Science.gov

Sample records for deathly drool evolutionary

  1. Deathly drool: evolutionary and ecological basis of septic bacteria in Komodo dragon mouths.

    PubMed

    Bull, J J; Jessop, Tim S; Whiteley, Marvin

    2010-06-21

    Komodo dragons, the world's largest lizard, dispatch their large ungulate prey by biting and tearing flesh. If a prey escapes, oral bacteria inoculated into the wound reputedly induce a sepsis that augments later prey capture by the same or other lizards. However, the ecological and evolutionary basis of sepsis in Komodo prey acquisition is controversial. Two models have been proposed. The "bacteria as venom" model postulates that the oral flora directly benefits the lizard in prey capture irrespective of any benefit to the bacteria. The "passive acquisition" model is that the oral flora of lizards reflects the bacteria found in carrion and sick prey, with no relevance to the ability to induce sepsis in subsequent prey. A third model is proposed and analyzed here, the "lizard-lizard epidemic" model. In this model, bacteria are spread indirectly from one lizard mouth to another. Prey escaping an initial attack act as vectors in infecting new lizards. This model requires specific life history characteristics and ways to refute the model based on these characteristics are proposed and tested. Dragon life histories (some details of which are reported here) prove remarkably consistent with the model, especially that multiple, unrelated lizards feed communally on large carcasses and that escaping, wounded prey are ultimately fed on by other lizards. The identities and evolutionary histories of bacteria in the oral flora may yield the most useful additional insights for further testing the epidemic model and can now be obtained with new technologies.

  2. Deathly Drool: Evolutionary and Ecological Basis of Septic Bacteria in Komodo Dragon Mouths

    PubMed Central

    Bull, J. J.; Jessop, Tim S.; Whiteley, Marvin

    2010-01-01

    Komodo dragons, the world's largest lizard, dispatch their large ungulate prey by biting and tearing flesh. If a prey escapes, oral bacteria inoculated into the wound reputedly induce a sepsis that augments later prey capture by the same or other lizards. However, the ecological and evolutionary basis of sepsis in Komodo prey acquisition is controversial. Two models have been proposed. The “bacteria as venom” model postulates that the oral flora directly benefits the lizard in prey capture irrespective of any benefit to the bacteria. The “passive acquisition” model is that the oral flora of lizards reflects the bacteria found in carrion and sick prey, with no relevance to the ability to induce sepsis in subsequent prey. A third model is proposed and analyzed here, the “lizard-lizard epidemic” model. In this model, bacteria are spread indirectly from one lizard mouth to another. Prey escaping an initial attack act as vectors in infecting new lizards. This model requires specific life history characteristics and ways to refute the model based on these characteristics are proposed and tested. Dragon life histories (some details of which are reported here) prove remarkably consistent with the model, especially that multiple, unrelated lizards feed communally on large carcasses and that escaping, wounded prey are ultimately fed on by other lizards. The identities and evolutionary histories of bacteria in the oral flora may yield the most useful additional insights for further testing the epidemic model and can now be obtained with new technologies. PMID:20574514

  3. Deathly drool: evolutionary and ecological basis of septic bacteria in Komodo dragon mouths.

    PubMed

    Bull, J J; Jessop, Tim S; Whiteley, Marvin

    2010-01-01

    Komodo dragons, the world's largest lizard, dispatch their large ungulate prey by biting and tearing flesh. If a prey escapes, oral bacteria inoculated into the wound reputedly induce a sepsis that augments later prey capture by the same or other lizards. However, the ecological and evolutionary basis of sepsis in Komodo prey acquisition is controversial. Two models have been proposed. The "bacteria as venom" model postulates that the oral flora directly benefits the lizard in prey capture irrespective of any benefit to the bacteria. The "passive acquisition" model is that the oral flora of lizards reflects the bacteria found in carrion and sick prey, with no relevance to the ability to induce sepsis in subsequent prey. A third model is proposed and analyzed here, the "lizard-lizard epidemic" model. In this model, bacteria are spread indirectly from one lizard mouth to another. Prey escaping an initial attack act as vectors in infecting new lizards. This model requires specific life history characteristics and ways to refute the model based on these characteristics are proposed and tested. Dragon life histories (some details of which are reported here) prove remarkably consistent with the model, especially that multiple, unrelated lizards feed communally on large carcasses and that escaping, wounded prey are ultimately fed on by other lizards. The identities and evolutionary histories of bacteria in the oral flora may yield the most useful additional insights for further testing the epidemic model and can now be obtained with new technologies. PMID:20574514

  4. Drooling

    MedlinePlus

    ... Allergies Heartburn or GERD (reflux) Poisoning (especially by pesticides) Pregnancy (may be due to pregnancy side effects, such as nausea or reflux) Reaction to snake or insect venom Swollen adenoids Use of certain medicines Drooling ...

  5. Drooling in Parkinson's Disease: a review

    PubMed Central

    Srivanitchapoom, Prachaya; Pandey, Sanjay; Hallett, Mark

    2014-01-01

    Parkinson's disease (PD) is a neurodegenerative disease causing both motor and non-motor symptoms. Drooling, an excessive pooling and spillover of saliva out of the oral cavity, is one of the non-motor symptoms in PD patients that produces various negative physical and psychosocial consequences for patients and their caregivers. At present, the pathophysiology of drooling in PD is not completely certain; however, impaired intra-oral salivary clearance is likely the major contributor. There are neither standard diagnostic criteria nor standard severity assessment tools for evaluating drooling in PD. In accordance with the possible pathophysiology, dopaminergic agents have been used to improve salivary clearance; however, these agents are not completely effective in controlling drooling. Various pharmacological and nonpharmacological treatment options have been studied. Local injection with botulinum toxin serotypes A and B into major salivary glands is most effective to reduce drooling. Future research to explore the exact pathophysiology and develop standard diagnostic criteria and standard severity assessment tools are needed to formulate specific treatment options and improve patient care. PMID:25200111

  6. Evolutionary games of condensates in coupled birth-death processes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Weber, Markus F.; Knebel, Johannes; Krueger, Torben; Frey, Erwin

    2015-03-01

    Condensation phenomena occur in many systems, both in a classical and a quantum mechanical context. Typically, the entities that constitute a system collectively concentrate in one distinct state during condensation. For example, cooling of an equilibrated bosonic gas may lead to condensation into the quantum ground state. Notably, the mathematical theory of this Bose-Einstein condensation is not limited to quantum theory but was also successfully applied to condensation in random networks. In our work, we follow the opposite path. We apply the theory of evolutionary dynamics to describe condensation in a bosonic system that is driven and dissipative. It was shown that the system may condense into multiple quantum states, but into which states has remained elusive. We find that vanishing of relative entropy production determines these states. We illuminate the physical principles underlying the condensation and show that the condensates do not need to be static but may engage in ``evolutionary games'' with exchange of particles. On the mathematical level, the condensation is described by coupled birth-death processes. The generic structure of these processes implies that our results also apply to condensation in other systems, ranging from population biology to chemical kinetics.

  7. Historical review of die drool phenomenon during plastics extrusion

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Musil, Jan; Zatloukal, Martin

    2013-04-01

    Die drool phenomenon is defined as unwanted spontaneous accumulation of extruded polymer melt on open faces of extrusion die during extrusion process. Such accumulated material builds up on the die exit and frequently or continually sticks onto the extruded product and thus damages it. Since die drool appears, extrusion process must be shut down and die exit must be manually cleaned which is time and money consuming. Although die drool is complex phenomenon and its formation mechanism is not fully understood yet, variety of proposed explanations of its formation mechanism and also many ways to its elimination can be found in open literature. Our review presents in historical order breakthrough works in the field of die drool research, shows many ways to suppress it, introduces methods for its quantitative evaluation and composition analysis and summarizes theories of die drool formation mechanism which can be helpful for extrusion experts.

  8. Comparing Drools and ontology reasoning approaches for telecardiology decision support.

    PubMed

    Van Hille, Pascal; Jacques, Julie; Taillard, Julien; Rosier, Arnaud; Delerue, David; Burgun, Anita; Dameron, Olivier

    2012-01-01

    Implantable cardioverter defibrillators can generate numerous alerts. Automatically classifying these alerts according to their severity hinges on the CHA2DS2VASc score. It requires some reasoning capabilities for interpreting the patient's data. We compared two approaches for implementing the reasoning module. One is based on the Drools engine, and the other is based on semantic web formalisms. Both were valid approaches with correct performances. For a broader domain, their limitations are the number and complexity of Drools rules and the performances of ontology-based reasoning, which suggests using the ontology for automatically generating a part of the Drools rules.

  9. Drooling, saliva production, and swallowing in cerebral palsy.

    PubMed

    Senner, Jill E; Logemann, Jerilyn; Zecker, Steven; Gaebler-Spira, Deborah

    2004-12-01

    Fourteen participants (six females, eight males) ranging in age from 7 years 11 months to 18 years 2 months (mean 11y 7mo) with a confirmed diagnosis of spastic cerebral palsy (CP) were included in the study. Participants included those who drooled (CP+, n=14); age- and sex-matched children with spastic CP who were dry to mild and never to infrequent droolers (CP-, n=14) as well as typically developing peers (CTRL, n=14) served as controls. Frequency of swallowing was measured by using simultaneous cervical ausculation and videotaping of the head and neck. Saliva production was measured with the Saxon test, a simple gauze-chewing procedure. In addition, Pediatric Evaluation of Disability Inventory (PEDI), Test of Nonverbal Intelligence-3 (TONI-3), dysarthria severity scale, and Gross Motor Function Classification System (GMFCS) scores were obtained for each participant. Both groups of participants with CP tended to swallow less frequently than typically developing participants and tended to produce less saliva than typically developing controls; however, these differences were not statistically significant. No correlation was found between amount of saliva produced and amount drooled (r=0.245). An analysis of variance (ANOVA) conducted on the PEDI functional skills mean scores indicated significant differences between the three groups (F(2,39)=23.522,p<0.0001). Likewise, an ANOVA conducted on the TONI-3 scores revealed statistically significant differences between the three groups (F(2,39)=31.761, p<0.0001). A Spearman's rho correlation indicated that GMFCS scores were not significantly correlated with drooling severity (Spearman's rho correlation=0.3951,p=0.037). Drooling severity was found to be positively correlated with dysarthria severity (Spearman's rho correlation=0.82,p<0.0001). These findings suggest that drooling in patients with CP is related to swallowing difficulties rather than hypersalivation. PMID:15581152

  10. An investigation of the relationship of drooling with nutrition and head control in individuals with quadriparetic cerebral palsy

    PubMed Central

    Taş, Seda Ayaz; Çankaya, Tamer

    2015-01-01

    [Purpose] The aim of the present study was to investigate the relationship of drooling, nutrition, and head control in individuals with quadriparetic cerebral palsy. [Subjects and Methods] Fifty-six individuals between the ages 2 and 15 diagnosed with spastic quadriparetic cerebral palsy and their families/caretakers were included in the study. Drooling severity and frequency of individuals was evaluated by using the scale developed by Thomas-Stonell and Greenberg (Drooling Severity and Frequency Scale). Individuals having a drooling severity value of 1 were included in the not drooling group (group 2) (n=27). Individuals having a drooling severity of 2, 3, 4, or 5 were included in the drooling group (group 1) (n=29). The evaluations were applied to both groups. [Results] There were significant differences between the two groups in terms of gestational age, nutrition behavior, eating abilities, head control, gagging, nutritional status (inadequate nutrition, normal nutrition, over weight-obese), and low weight. It was established that as head control increased, drooling severity diminished, and as drooling severity increased, BMI index decreased. Independence of eating ability was found to be greater in the group having better drooling control. [Conclusion] In the present study, it was determined that drooling control affected nutritional functions and that drooling control was affected by head control. PMID:26696723

  11. Prevalence and Predictors of Drooling in 7- to 14-Year-Old Children with Cerebral Palsy: A Population Study

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Reid, Susan M.; McCutcheon, Jennifer; Reddihough, Dinah S.; Johnson, Hilary

    2012-01-01

    Aim: To establish a prevalence estimate for drooling and explore factors associated with drooling in a population sample of children with cerebral palsy (CP) aged 7 to 14 years living in Victoria, Australia. Method: A self-report questionnaire was used to collect data on drooling from parents of children born between 1996 and 2001, and registered…

  12. An evolutionary concept analysis of school violence: from bullying to death.

    PubMed

    Jones, Sandra N; Waite, Roberta; Clements, Paul Thomas

    2012-03-01

    School violence has evolved into an identifiably pervasive public health problem. Adverse consequences of school violence vary from bullying to death. In 2007, 457,700 youth (ages 12-18) were victims of serious crimes with 34% occurring on school grounds or on the way to school. A concept analysis of school violence can expand and enhance awareness of the pervasive phenomenon of school violence. Rodgers and Knafl (1993) evolutionary concept analysis method was used to provide a guiding framework for examination of school violence. Related manuscripts from the extant interdisciplinary school violence literature were obtained from relevant health science databases, the Education Resources Information Center, and various governmental and specialty websites within the contemporary time frame of 2000-2010. Analysis revealed the enormous scope and complexity of the problem of school violence including bullying, physical fighting, weapon carrying, alcohol/substance use and street gang presence on school property, school-associated violent death, safe schools legislation, and violence prevention strategies. Forensic nurses across practice settings are uniquely positioned to intervene to improve health of these youth through identification, assessment, treatment, and referral.

  13. [Sialorrhea: hypersalivation and drooling. An underestimated problem in medical practice].

    PubMed

    Boros, Ildikó; Keszler, Péter

    2006-06-01

    On the contrary to hyposalivation/xerostomia there is a little attention paid in the literature for discussing the problem of the patient having too much saliva. In most of cases, pathogenesis of sialorrhea is not known. Due to the small number of patients involved in the studies it is difficult to get exact data. In addition to that, there is no consensus either on the terminology of sialorrhea or a preferable method which should be used to achieve the best diagnostic and therapeutic approaches. Sialorrhea may occur in all age groups of population either as a consequence of increased salivary gland secretion or oral incontinence and impaired swallowing. Based on a recently published paper hypersalivation should be considered as the primary form of sialorrhea, and drooling corresponds to its secondary form. Each condition may seriously affect the physical activity, the functioning of different organs, communication, the psychosocial status of the patients. Based on a wide horizon of published data this review is focused on the terminology, methods of assessment, etiology, frequency, symptoms, and therapy of sialorrhea with special emphasis on its dental aspects.

  14. Upgraded Technology for Contingent Stimulation of Mouth Wiping by Two Persons with Drooling and Profound Developmental Disabilities

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Lancioni, Giulio E.; Singh, Nirbhay N.; O'Reilly, Mark F.; Sigafoos, Jeff; Pichierri, Sabrina; Oliva, Doretta

    2009-01-01

    Many persons with developmental and physical disabilities experience drooling (i.e., loss of saliva from the mouth). Technology was recently developed to help two of these persons reduce the negative effects of drooling by increasing mouth-wiping responses. This study upgraded our initial approach and tested it with the two persons who we…

  15. Behavioral Treatment of Drooling: A Methodological Critique of the Literature with Clinical Guidelines and Suggestions for Future Research

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Van der Burg, Jan J. W.; Didden, Robert; Jongerius, Peter H.; Rotteveel, Jan J.

    2007-01-01

    Many children with mental retardation and developmental disabilities suffer from the consequences of chronic drooling. Behavioral treatment for drooling should be considered before other, more intrusive treatments such as medication and surgery are implemented. However, empirical studies on behavioral procedures are scarce. This article reviews 19…

  16. Oral glycopyrrolate for the treatment of chronic severe drooling caused by neurological disorders in children.

    PubMed

    Evatt, Marian L

    2011-01-01

    Excessive drooling may complicate the care of children with chronic neurological conditions by socially isolating both patients and families and by causing secondary dermatitis and infection. Normal control of saliva requires normal integrity of oral structures, normal oropharyngeal sensation, and motor functioning, as well as normal cognitive awareness and rate of salivary production. Glycopyrrolate is an anticholinergic medication with a quaternary structure that recently received Food and Drug Administration approval to treat sialorrhea due to neurological problems in children ages 3-16 years. This review summarizes the few published studies of safety and efficacy of glycopyrrolate for drooling in children with chronic neurological conditions.

  17. [Death].

    PubMed

    Ribas, Jordi Domingo

    2003-12-01

    Intercultural factors are essential for reflection. In this article, the authors deals with a more direct vision on the special edition about Grief and Mourning, about the topic which lies in the depths of all of our consciences: death and the question what lies beyond death? The author provides us elements to reflect about concepts, some accepted in various cases, rejected in others, but always polemical, which help us to penetrate farther into the real mystery of life: death and what follows death.

  18. Elimination of Drooling by an Adolescent Student with Autism Attending Public High School

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Kay, Shannon; Harchik, Alan E.; Luiselli, James K.

    2006-01-01

    We evaluated a multicomponent intervention that successfully eliminated drooling by a 17-year-old student with autism who attended a public high school. The student was taught to perform compensatory responses (wiping his mouth and swallowing saliva), received positive reinforcement for having a "dry mouth," and was given opportunities to monitor…

  19. A Descriptive Analysis of Studies on Behavioural Treatment of Drooling (1970-2005)

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Van der Burg, Jan J. W.; Didden, Robert; Jongerius, Peter H.; Rotteveel, Jan J.

    2007-01-01

    A descriptive analysis was conducted on studies on the behavioural treatment of drooling (published between 1970 and 2005). The 17 articles that met the inclusion criteria described 53 participants (mean age 14y 7mo, [SD 4y 9mo]; range 6-28y). Sex of 87% of the participants was reported: 28 male, 18 female. For 60% of the participants the degree…

  20. Birth, death and horizontal transfer of the fumonisin biosynthetic gene cluster during the evolutionary diversification of Fusarium.

    PubMed

    Proctor, Robert H; Van Hove, François; Susca, Antonia; Stea, Gaetano; Busman, Mark; van der Lee, Theo; Waalwijk, Cees; Moretti, Antonio; Ward, Todd J

    2013-10-01

    Fumonisins are a family of carcinogenic secondary metabolites produced by members of the Fusarium fujikuroi species complex (FFSC) and rare strains of Fusarium oxysporum. In Fusarium, fumonisin biosynthetic genes (FUM) are clustered, and the cluster is uniform in gene organization. Here, sequence analyses indicated that the cluster exists in five different genomic contexts, defining five cluster types. In FUM gene genealogies, evolutionary relationships between fusaria with different cluster types were largely incongruent with species relationships inferred from primary-metabolism (PM) gene genealogies, and FUM cluster types are not trans-specific. In addition, synonymous site divergence analyses indicated that three FUM cluster types predate diversification of FFSC. The data are not consistent with balancing selection or interspecific hybridization, but they are consistent with two competing hypotheses: (i) multiple horizontal transfers of the cluster from unknown donors to FFSC recipients and (ii) cluster duplication and loss (birth and death). Furthermore, low levels of FUM gene divergence in F. bulbicola, an FFSC species, and F. oxysporum provide evidence for horizontal transfer of the cluster from the former, or a closely related species, to the latter. Thus, uniform gene organization within the FUM cluster belies a complex evolutionary history that has not always paralleled the evolution of Fusarium.

  1. Games of life and death: antibiotic resistance and production through the lens of evolutionary game theory.

    PubMed

    Conlin, Peter L; Chandler, Josephine R; Kerr, Benjamin

    2014-10-01

    In this review, we demonstrate how game theory can be a useful first step in modeling and understanding interactions among bacteria that produce and resist antibiotics. We introduce the basic features of evolutionary game theory and explore model microbial systems that correspond to some classical games. Each game discussed defines a different category of social interaction with different resulting population dynamics (exclusion, coexistence, bistability, cycling). We then explore how the framework can be extended to incorporate some of the complexity of natural microbial communities. Overall, the game theoretical perspective helps to guide our expectations about the evolution of some forms of antibiotic resistance and production because it makes clear the precise nature of social interaction in this context.

  2. Diagnosis and Management of Drooling in Children With Progressive Dystonia: A Case Series of Patients With MEGDEL Syndrome.

    PubMed

    Blommaert, Dorian; van Hulst, Karen; Hoogen, Frank J A van den; Erasmus, Corrie E; Wortmann, Saskia B

    2016-09-01

    Drooling is a common problem in children with progressive dystonia. The authors noted a 58% incidence of drooling in 22/38 children with MEGDEL, a rare neurodegenerative cause of dystonia and report on the clinical course of four patients. Drooling of varying severity and subsequent respiratory problems were treated at the authors' multidisciplinary saliva-control outpatient clinic. One patient improved on antireflux medication, the second after medication with drooling as side effect was changed. Two other patients underwent salivary gland surgery, one of whom significantly improved; the other died shortly after surgery. The heterogeneity of the cases presented shows the need for stepwise and personalized treatment. The authors recommend the following: (1) optimize the treatment of the underlying neurological condition and replace medication that stimulates saliva secretion; (2) treat constipation, scoliosis, and gastroesophageal reflux if there is still a risk of chronic aspiration of saliva; (3) perform more intense/invasive treatment (botulinum toxin, salivary gland surgery). PMID:27229007

  3. Evolutionary analysis of the mammalian M1 aminopeptidases reveals conserved exon structure and gene death.

    PubMed

    Maynard, Karen Beasley; Smith, Shannon A; Davis, Anthony C; Trivette, Andrew; Seipelt-Thiemann, Rebecca L

    2014-11-15

    The members of the M1 aminopeptidase family share conserved domains, yet show functional divergence within the family as a whole. In order to better understand this family, this study analyzed the mammalian members in depth at exon, gene, and protein levels. The twelve human members, eleven rat members, and eleven mouse members were first analyzed in multiple alignments to visualize both reported and unreported conserved domains. Phylogenetic trees were then generated for humans, rats, mice, and all mammals to determine how closely related the homologs were and to gain insight to the divergence in the family members. This produced three groups with similarity within the family. Next, a synteny study was completed to determine the present locations of the genes and changes that had occurred. It became apparent that gene death likely resulted in the lack of one member in mouse and rat. Finally, an in-depth analysis of the exon structure revealed that nine members of the human family and eight in mouse, are highly conserved within the exon structure. Taken together, these results indicate that the M1 aminopeptidase family is a divergent family with three subgroups and that genetic evidence mirrors categorization of the family by enzymatic function.

  4. Evolutionary timescale of monocots determined by the fossilized birth-death model using a large number of fossil records.

    PubMed

    Eguchi, Satoshi; Tamura, Minoru N

    2016-05-01

    Although the phylogenetic relationships between monocot orders are sufficiently understood, a timescale of their evolution is needed. Several studies on molecular clock dating are available, but their results have been biased by their calibration schemes. Recently, the fossilized birth-death model, a type of Bayesian dating method, was proposed, and it does not require prior calibration and allows the use all available fossils. Using this model, we conducted divergence-time estimations of monocots to explore their evolutionary timeline without calibration bias. This is the first application of this model to seed plants. The dataset contained the matK and rbcL chloroplast genes of 118 monocot genera covering all extant orders. We employed information from 247 monocot fossils, which exceeded previous dating analyses that used a maximum of 12 monocot fossils. The crown group of monocots was dated to approximately the Late Jurassic-Early Cretaceous periods, and most extant monocot orders were estimated to diverge throughout the Early Cretaceous. Our results overlapped with the divergence time of insect lineages, such as beetles and flies, suggesting an association with pollinators in early monocot evolution. In addition, we proposed three new orders based on divergence time: Orchidales separated from Asparagales and Tofieldiales and Arales separated from Aslimatales. PMID:27061096

  5. Acute colonic pseudo-obstruction in a child taking trihexyphenidyl for drooling: Prescribers beware.

    PubMed

    Begbie, F; Walker, G; Kubba, H; Sabharwal, A

    2015-06-01

    Colonic pseudo-obstruction (Ogilvie's Syndrome) in children is relatively uncommon. We report an unusual case of colonic pseudo-obstruction in an 8-year-old child with cerebral palsy and long-term hypomotility issues being treated for drooling with the anticholinergic medication trihexyphenidyl. He presented as an emergency with severe abdominal distension, abdominal tenderness and vomiting. An emergency laparotomy revealed colonic dilatation and a defunctioning ileostomy was created. To our knowledge, this is the first case reporting colonic pseudo-obstruction as a possible complication of treatment with trihexyphenidyl. We suggest prescribers should exercise caution when prescribing trihexyphenidyl in patients with long-term intestinal hypomotility issues.

  6. Use of a Mouth-Wiping Response to Reduce Drooling by Two Persons with Profound Developmental Disabilities

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Lancioni, Giulio E.; Singh, Nirbhay N.; O'Reilly, Mark F.; Sigafoos, Jeff; Pichierri, Sabrina; Iaffaldano, Daniela; Latrofa, Alessandra; Oliva, Doretta

    2008-01-01

    Two men with profound developmental disabilities used a mouth-wiping response instrumental to reduce drooling via a micro-switch-based program (i.e., a program in which the response was automatically monitored and followed by positive stimulation). The wiping response was performed via a napkin or a handkerchief placed inside a belt pocket. The…

  7. Two Persons with Multiple Disabilities Use a Mouth-Drying Response to Reduce the Effects of Their Drooling

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Lancioni, Giulio E.; Singh, Nirbhay N.; O'Reilly, Mark F.; Sigafoos, Jeff; Oliva, Doretta; Smaldone, Angela; La Martire, Maria L.

    2009-01-01

    These two studies involved a boy and a man with multiple disabilities, who were taught to use a mouth-drying response to reduce the effects of their drooling. Both studies relied on microswitch technology to monitor the drying response and follow it with positive stimulation (i.e., during intervention). In Study I, the boy performed the drying…

  8. Comparing the Effect of Botulinum Toxin Type B Injection at Different Dosages for Patient with Drooling due to Brain Lesion

    PubMed Central

    Park, Hee Dong; Park, Sang Jun; Choi, Yong Min

    2012-01-01

    Objective To investigate Botulinum toxin type B (BNT-B) injection's effect and duration depending on dose for patients with brain lesion. Method Twenty one patients with brain lesion and severe drooling were included and divided into three groups. All patients received conventional dysphagia therapy. Group A patients (n=7) received an injection of 1,500 units and group B patients (n=7) received an injection of 2,500 units of BNT-B in submandibular gland under ultrasound guidance. Group C patients (n=7) received conventional dysphagia therapy. Saliva secretion was assessed quantitatively at baseline and at weeks 1, 2, 4, 8, and 12. The severity and frequency of drooling was assessed using the Drooling Quotient (DQ) by patients and/or caregivers. Results Group A and B reported a distinct improvement of the symptoms within 2 weeks after BNT-B injection. Compared to the baseline, the mean amount of saliva decreased significantly throughout the study. However, there was no meaningful difference between the two groups. The greatest reductions were achieved at 2 weeks and lasted up to 8 weeks after BNT-B injection. Group C did not show any differences. Conclusion Local injection of 1,500 units of BNT-B into salivary glands under ultrasonic guidance proved to be a safe and effective dose for drooling in patient with brain lesion, as did 2,500 units. PMID:23342318

  9. Executing medical logic modules expressed in ArdenML using Drools.

    PubMed

    Jung, Chai Young; Sward, Katherine A; Haug, Peter J

    2012-01-01

    The Arden Syntax is an HL7 standard language for representing medical knowledge as logic statements. Despite nearly 2 decades of availability, Arden Syntax has not been widely used. This has been attributed to the lack of a generally available compiler to implement the logic, to Arden's complex syntax, to the challenges of mapping local data to data references in the Medical Logic Modules (MLMs), or, more globally, to the general absence of decision support in healthcare computing. An XML representation (ArdenML) may partially address the technical challenges. MLMs created in ArdenML can be converted into executable files using standard transforms written in the Extensible Stylesheet Language Transformation (XSLT) language. As an example, we have demonstrated an approach to executing MLMs written in ArdenML using the Drools business rule management system. Extensions to ArdenML make it possible to generate a user interface through which an MLM developer can test for logical errors. PMID:22180871

  10. Executing medical logic modules expressed in ArdenML using Drools.

    PubMed

    Jung, Chai Young; Sward, Katherine A; Haug, Peter J

    2012-01-01

    The Arden Syntax is an HL7 standard language for representing medical knowledge as logic statements. Despite nearly 2 decades of availability, Arden Syntax has not been widely used. This has been attributed to the lack of a generally available compiler to implement the logic, to Arden's complex syntax, to the challenges of mapping local data to data references in the Medical Logic Modules (MLMs), or, more globally, to the general absence of decision support in healthcare computing. An XML representation (ArdenML) may partially address the technical challenges. MLMs created in ArdenML can be converted into executable files using standard transforms written in the Extensible Stylesheet Language Transformation (XSLT) language. As an example, we have demonstrated an approach to executing MLMs written in ArdenML using the Drools business rule management system. Extensions to ArdenML make it possible to generate a user interface through which an MLM developer can test for logical errors.

  11. Evolutionary dynamics of the 5S rDNA gene family in the mussel Mytilus: mixed effects of birth-and-death and concerted evolution.

    PubMed

    Freire, Ruth; Arias, Alberto; Insua, Ana M; Méndez, Josefina; Eirín-López, José M

    2010-05-01

    In higher eukaryotes, the gene family encoding the 5S ribosomal RNA (5S rRNA) has been used (together with histones) to showcase the archetypal example of a gene family subject to concerted evolution. However, recent studies have revealed conspicuous features challenging the predictions of this model, including heterogeneity of repeat units, the presence of functional 5S gene variants as well as the existence of 5S rDNA divergent pseudogenes lacking traces of homogenization. In the present work, we have broadened the scope in the evolutionary study of ribosomal gene families by studying the 5S rRNA family in mussels, a model organism which stands out among other animals due to the heterogeneity it displays regarding sequence and organization. To this end, 48 previously unknown 5S rDNA units (coding and spacer regions) were sequenced in five mussel species, leading to the characterization of two new types of units (referred to here as small-beta 5S rDNA and gamma-5S rDNA) coexisting in the genome with alpha and beta rDNA units. The intense genetic dynamics of this family is further supported by the first description of an association between gamma-5S rDNA units and tRNA genes. Molecular evolutionary and phylogenetic analyses revealed an extensive lack of homology among spacer sequences belonging to different rDNA types, suggesting the presence of independent evolutionary pathways leading to their differentiation. Overall, our results suggest that the long-term evolution of the 5S rRNA gene family in mussels is most likely mediated by a mixed mechanism involving the generation of genetic diversity through birth-and-death, followed by a process of local homogenization resulting from concerted evolution in order to maintain the genetic identities of the different 5S units, probably after their transposition to independent chromosomal locations.

  12. Onabotulinumtoxin A Treatment of Drooling in Children with Cerebral Palsy: A Prospective, Longitudinal Open-Label Study

    PubMed Central

    Møller, Eigild; Pedersen, Søren Anker; Vinicoff, Pablo Gustavo; Bardow, Allan; Lykkeaa, Joan; Svendsen, Pia; Bakke, Merete

    2015-01-01

    The aim of this prospective open-label study was to treat disabling drooling in children with cerebral palsy (CP) with onabotulinumtoxin A (A/Ona, Botox®) into submandibular and parotid glands and find the lowest effective dosage and least invasive method. A/Ona was injected in 14 children, Mean age 9 years, SD 3 years, under ultrasonic guidance in six successive Series, with at least six months between injections. Doses and gland involvement increased from Series A to F (units (U) per submandibular/parotid gland: A, 10/0; B, 15/0; C, 20/0; D, 20/20; E, 30/20; and F, 30/30). The effect was assessed 2, 4, 8, 12, and 20 weeks after A/Ona (drooling problems (VAS), impact (0–7), treatment effect (0–5), unstimulated whole saliva (UWS) flow and composition)) and analyzed by two-way ANOVA. The effect was unchanged–moderate in A to moderate–marked in F. Changes in all parameters were significant in E and F, but with swallowing problems ≤5 weeks in 3 of 28 treatments. F had largest VAS and UWS reduction (64% and 49%). We recommend: Start with dose D A/Ona (both submandibular and parotid glands and a total of 80 U) and increase to E and eventually F (total 120 U) without sufficient response. PMID:26134257

  13. Promoting Mouth-Drying Responses to Reduce Drooling Effects by Persons with Intellectual and Multiple Disabilities: A Study of Two Cases

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Lancioni, Giulio E.; Singh, Nirbhay N.; O'Reilly, Mark F.; Sigafoos, Jeff; Oliva, Doretta; Smaldone, Angela; La Martire, Maria L.; Pichierri, Sabrina; Groeneweg, Jop

    2011-01-01

    This study assessed the use of microswitch technology to promote mouth-drying responses and thereby reduce the effects of drooling by two adults with severe intellectual and multiple disabilities. Mouth-drying responses were performed via a special napkin that contained pressure sensors, a microprocessor and an MP3 to monitor the responses and…

  14. New Techniques for Augmenting Saliva Collection: Bacon Rules and Lozenge Drools

    PubMed Central

    Miočević, Olga; Warner, Melissa C.; Slowey, Paul D.; Shirtcliff, Elizabeth A.

    2015-01-01

    Purpose Saliva is a reliable, noninvasive, and cost-effective alternative to biomarkers measured in other biological fluids. Within certain populations, saliva sampling may be difficult because of insufficient saliva flow, which may compromise disease diagnosis or research integrity. Methods to improve flow rates (eg, administering citric acid, chewing gum, or collecting cotton) may compromise biomarker integrity, especially if the methods involve the presence of a collection aid in the oral cavity. Anecdotal strategies (eg, looking at pictures of food or imagining food) have not been evaluated to date. In this study, we evaluate whether 2 novel collection techniques improve saliva flow or interfere with assay of common biomarkers (ie, cortisol, dehydroepiandrosterone, and testosterone). We evaluate an over-the-counter anhydrous crystalline maltose lozenge intended to increase saliva production for patients with xerostomia long after the lozenge dissolves. We then evaluate whether the smell of freshly cooked bacon stimulates a pavlovian-type reflex. Methods Saliva was collected from 27 healthy young adults (aged 20-34 years; 12 men) on a basal day and a lozenge day, providing 5 samples at 15-minute intervals. Twenty participants then returned for the bacon day condition, providing 2 saliva samples with an interval of 15 minutes between samples. Collection times required to generate 2 mL of saliva across collection strategies were recorded, and then saliva samples were assayed for cortisol, dehydroepiandrosterone, and testosterone. Findings Repeated analysis of variance measures revealed that both the lozenges and bacon significantly decreased collection time compared with the passive drool collection on the basal day. No significant effects were found related to the quantification of cortisol, testosterone, or dehydroepiandrosterone when comparing lozenge or bacon to the basal day. In addition, bivariate correlations revealed that concentrations from time

  15. Modeling and executing electronic health records driven phenotyping algorithms using the NQF Quality Data Model and JBoss® Drools Engine.

    PubMed

    Li, Dingcheng; Endle, Cory M; Murthy, Sahana; Stancl, Craig; Suesse, Dale; Sottara, Davide; Huff, Stanley M; Chute, Christopher G; Pathak, Jyotishman

    2012-01-01

    With increasing adoption of electronic health records (EHRs), the need for formal representations for EHR-driven phenotyping algorithms has been recognized for some time. The recently proposed Quality Data Model from the National Quality Forum (NQF) provides an information model and a grammar that is intended to represent data collected during routine clinical care in EHRs as well as the basic logic required to represent the algorithmic criteria for phenotype definitions. The QDM is further aligned with Meaningful Use standards to ensure that the clinical data and algorithmic criteria are represented in a consistent, unambiguous and reproducible manner. However, phenotype definitions represented in QDM, while structured, cannot be executed readily on existing EHRs. Rather, human interpretation, and subsequent implementation is a required step for this process. To address this need, the current study investigates open-source JBoss® Drools rules engine for automatic translation of QDM criteria into rules for execution over EHR data. In particular, using Apache Foundation's Unstructured Information Management Architecture (UIMA) platform, we developed a translator tool for converting QDM defined phenotyping algorithm criteria into executable Drools rules scripts, and demonstrated their execution on real patient data from Mayo Clinic to identify cases for Coronary Artery Disease and Diabetes. To the best of our knowledge, this is the first study illustrating a framework and an approach for executing phenotyping criteria modeled in QDM using the Drools business rules management system. PMID:23304325

  16. Modeling and executing electronic health records driven phenotyping algorithms using the NQF Quality Data Model and JBoss® Drools Engine.

    PubMed

    Li, Dingcheng; Endle, Cory M; Murthy, Sahana; Stancl, Craig; Suesse, Dale; Sottara, Davide; Huff, Stanley M; Chute, Christopher G; Pathak, Jyotishman

    2012-01-01

    With increasing adoption of electronic health records (EHRs), the need for formal representations for EHR-driven phenotyping algorithms has been recognized for some time. The recently proposed Quality Data Model from the National Quality Forum (NQF) provides an information model and a grammar that is intended to represent data collected during routine clinical care in EHRs as well as the basic logic required to represent the algorithmic criteria for phenotype definitions. The QDM is further aligned with Meaningful Use standards to ensure that the clinical data and algorithmic criteria are represented in a consistent, unambiguous and reproducible manner. However, phenotype definitions represented in QDM, while structured, cannot be executed readily on existing EHRs. Rather, human interpretation, and subsequent implementation is a required step for this process. To address this need, the current study investigates open-source JBoss® Drools rules engine for automatic translation of QDM criteria into rules for execution over EHR data. In particular, using Apache Foundation's Unstructured Information Management Architecture (UIMA) platform, we developed a translator tool for converting QDM defined phenotyping algorithm criteria into executable Drools rules scripts, and demonstrated their execution on real patient data from Mayo Clinic to identify cases for Coronary Artery Disease and Diabetes. To the best of our knowledge, this is the first study illustrating a framework and an approach for executing phenotyping criteria modeled in QDM using the Drools business rules management system.

  17. Remembering the evolutionary Freud.

    PubMed

    Young, Allan

    2006-03-01

    Throughout his career as a writer, Sigmund Freud maintained an interest in the evolutionary origins of the human mind and its neurotic and psychotic disorders. In common with many writers then and now, he believed that the evolutionary past is conserved in the mind and the brain. Today the "evolutionary Freud" is nearly forgotten. Even among Freudians, he is regarded to be a red herring, relevant only to the extent that he diverts attention from the enduring achievements of the authentic Freud. There are three ways to explain these attitudes. First, the evolutionary Freud's key work is the "Overview of the Transference Neurosis" (1915). But it was published at an inopportune moment, forty years after the author's death, during the so-called "Freud wars." Second, Freud eventually lost interest in the "Overview" and the prospect of a comprehensive evolutionary theory of psychopathology. The publication of The Ego and the Id (1923), introducing Freud's structural theory of the psyche, marked the point of no return. Finally, Freud's evolutionary theory is simply not credible. It is based on just-so stories and a thoroughly discredited evolutionary mechanism, Lamarckian use-inheritance. Explanations one and two are probably correct but also uninteresting. Explanation number three assumes that there is a fundamental difference between Freud's evolutionary narratives (not credible) and the evolutionary accounts of psychopathology that currently circulate in psychiatry and mainstream journals (credible). The assumption is mistaken but worth investigating.

  18. Evolutionary thinking

    PubMed Central

    Hunt, Tam

    2014-01-01

    Evolution as an idea has a lengthy history, even though the idea of evolution is generally associated with Darwin today. Rebecca Stott provides an engaging and thoughtful overview of this history of evolutionary thinking in her 2013 book, Darwin's Ghosts: The Secret History of Evolution. Since Darwin, the debate over evolution—both how it takes place and, in a long war of words with religiously-oriented thinkers, whether it takes place—has been sustained and heated. A growing share of this debate is now devoted to examining how evolutionary thinking affects areas outside of biology. How do our lives change when we recognize that all is in flux? What can we learn about life more generally if we study change instead of stasis? Carter Phipps’ book, Evolutionaries: Unlocking the Spiritual and Cultural Potential of Science's Greatest Idea, delves deep into this relatively new development. Phipps generally takes as a given the validity of the Modern Synthesis of evolutionary biology. His story takes us into, as the subtitle suggests, the spiritual and cultural implications of evolutionary thinking. Can religion and evolution be reconciled? Can evolutionary thinking lead to a new type of spirituality? Is our culture already being changed in ways that we don't realize by evolutionary thinking? These are all important questions and Phipps book is a great introduction to this discussion. Phipps is an author, journalist, and contributor to the emerging “integral” or “evolutionary” cultural movement that combines the insights of Integral Philosophy, evolutionary science, developmental psychology, and the social sciences. He has served as the Executive Editor of EnlightenNext magazine (no longer published) and more recently is the co-founder of the Institute for Cultural Evolution, a public policy think tank addressing the cultural roots of America's political challenges. What follows is an email interview with Phipps. PMID:26478766

  19. Evolutionary awareness.

    PubMed

    Gorelik, Gregory; Shackelford, Todd K

    2014-08-27

    In this article, we advance the concept of "evolutionary awareness," a metacognitive framework that examines human thought and emotion from a naturalistic, evolutionary perspective. We begin by discussing the evolution and current functioning of the moral foundations on which our framework rests. Next, we discuss the possible applications of such an evolutionarily-informed ethical framework to several domains of human behavior, namely: sexual maturation, mate attraction, intrasexual competition, culture, and the separation between various academic disciplines. Finally, we discuss ways in which an evolutionary awareness can inform our cross-generational activities-which we refer to as "intergenerational extended phenotypes"-by helping us to construct a better future for ourselves, for other sentient beings, and for our environment.

  20. Death imagery and death anxiety.

    PubMed

    McDonald, R T; Hilgendorf, W A

    1986-01-01

    This study investigated the relationship between positive/negative death imagery and death anxiety. Subjects were 179 undergraduate students at a large, private, midwestern university. Results reveal that on five measures of death anxiety the subjects with low death anxiety scores had significantly more positive death images than did those with high death anxiety scores. The few subjects who imagined death to be young (N = 14) had a significantly more positive image of death than those who perceived it to be an old person. Death was seen as male by 92% of the male respondents and 74% of the female respondents. Significant differences in death imagery and death anxiety were found between subjects enrolled in an introductory psychology course and those enrolled in a thanatology course. No sex differences in death anxiety or positive/negative death imagery were found.

  1. Evolutionary medicine.

    PubMed

    Swynghedauw, B

    2004-04-01

    Nothing in biology makes sense except in the light of evolution. Evolutionary, or darwinian, medicine takes the view that contemporary diseases result from incompatibility between the conditions under which the evolutionary pressure had modified our genetic endowment and the lifestyle and dietary habits in which we are currently living, including the enhanced lifespan, the changes in dietary habits and the lack of physical activity. An evolutionary trait express a genetic polymorphism which finally improve fitness, it needs million years to become functional. A limited genetic diversity is a necessary prerequisite for evolutionary medicine. Nevertheless, search for a genetic endowment would become nearly impossible if the human races were genetically different. From a genetic point of view, homo sapiens, is homogeneous, and the so-called human races have only a socio-economic definition. Historically, Heart Failure, HF, had an infectious origin and resulted from mechanical overload which triggered mechanoconversion by using phylogenically ancient pleiotropic pathways. Adaptation was mainly caused by negative inotropism. Recently, HF was caused by a complex remodelling caused by the trophic effects of mechanics, ischemia, senescence, diabetes and, neurohormones. The generally admitted hypothesis is that cancers were largely caused by a combination of modern reproductive and dietary lifestyles mismatched with genotypic traits, plus the longer time available for a confrontation. Such a concept is illustrated for skin and breast cancers, and also for the link between cancer risk and dietary habits.

  2. Scalable and High-Throughput Execution of Clinical Quality Measures from Electronic Health Records using MapReduce and the JBoss® Drools Engine

    PubMed Central

    Peterson, Kevin J.; Pathak, Jyotishman

    2014-01-01

    Automated execution of electronic Clinical Quality Measures (eCQMs) from electronic health records (EHRs) on large patient populations remains a significant challenge, and the testability, interoperability, and scalability of measure execution are critical. The High Throughput Phenotyping (HTP; http://phenotypeportal.org) project aligns with these goals by using the standards-based HL7 Health Quality Measures Format (HQMF) and Quality Data Model (QDM) for measure specification, as well as Common Terminology Services 2 (CTS2) for semantic interpretation. The HQMF/QDM representation is automatically transformed into a JBoss® Drools workflow, enabling horizontal scalability via clustering and MapReduce algorithms. Using Project Cypress, automated verification metrics can then be produced. Our results show linear scalability for nine executed 2014 Center for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) eCQMs for eligible professionals and hospitals for >1,000,000 patients, and verified execution correctness of 96.4% based on Project Cypress test data of 58 eCQMs. PMID:25954459

  3. Cot Deaths.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Tyrrell, Shelagh

    1985-01-01

    Addresses the tragedy of crib deaths, giving particular attention to causes, prevention, and medical research on Sudden Infant Death Syndrome (SIDS). Gives anecdotal accounts of coping strategies used by parents and families of SIDS infants. (DT)

  4. Death duties

    PubMed Central

    Myers, Kathryn A.; Eden, David

    2007-01-01

    PROBLEM BEING ADDRESSED Family physicians are often called upon to pronounce and certify the deaths of patients. Inadequate knowledge of the Coroners Act (in the province of Ontario) and of the correct process of certifying death can make physicians uncomfortable when confronted with these tasks. OBJECTIVE OF PROGRAM To educate family physicians about how to perform the administrative tasks required of them when patients die. PROGRAM DESCRIPTION The program included an educational video, a tutorial outlining the process of death certification, and discussion with a regional coroner about key features of the Coroners Act. In small groups, participants worked through cases of patient deaths in which they were asked to determine whether a coroner needed to be involved, to determine the manner of death, and to complete a mock death certificate for each case. CONCLUSION All participants reported a high level of satisfaction with the workshop and thought the main objective of the program had been achieved. Results of a test given 3 months after the workshop showed substantial improvement in participants’ knowledge of the coroner’s role and of the process of death certification. PMID:17872782

  5. Neonatal Death

    MedlinePlus

    ... story First Candle Centering Corporation The Compassionate Friends Star Legacy Foundation Last reviewed: November, 2015 Neonatal death ... story First Candle Centering Corporation The Compassionate Friends Star Legacy Foundation Last reviewed: November, 2015 Complications & Loss ...

  6. Programmed cell death in protists.

    PubMed

    Deponte, Marcel

    2008-07-01

    Programmed cell death in protists does not seem to make sense at first sight. However, apoptotic markers in unicellular organisms have been observed in all but one of the six/eight major groups of eukaryotes suggesting an ancient evolutionary origin of this regulated process. This review summarizes the available data on apoptotic markers in non-opisthokonts and elucidates potential functions and evolution of programmed cell death. A newly discovered family of caspase-like proteases, the metacaspases, is considered to exert the function of caspases in unicellular organisms. Important results on metacaspases, however, showed that they cannot be always correlated to the measured proteolytic activity during protist cell death. Thus, a major challenge for apoptosis research in a variety of protists remains the identification of the molecular cell death machinery.

  7. Physcomitrella patens activates reinforcement of the cell wall, programmed cell death and accumulation of evolutionary conserved defence signals, such as salicylic acid and 12-oxo-phytodienoic acid, but not jasmonic acid, upon Botrytis cinerea infection.

    PubMed

    Ponce De León, Inés; Schmelz, Eric A; Gaggero, Carina; Castro, Alexandra; Álvarez, Alfonso; Montesano, Marcos

    2012-10-01

    The moss Physcomitrella patens is an evolutionarily basal model system suitable for the analysis of plant defence responses activated after pathogen assault. Upon infection with the necrotroph Botrytis cinerea, several defence mechanisms are induced in P. patens, including the fortification of the plant cell wall by the incorporation of phenolic compounds and the induced expression of related genes. Botrytis cinerea infection also activates the accumulation of reactive oxygen species and cell death with hallmarks of programmed cell death in moss tissues. Salicylic acid (SA) levels also increase after fungal infection, and treatment with SA enhances transcript accumulation of the defence gene phenylalanine ammonia-lyase (PAL) in P. patens colonies. The expression levels of the genes involved in 12-oxo-phytodienoic acid (OPDA) synthesis, including lipoxygenase (LOX) and allene oxide synthase (AOS), increase in P. patens gametophytes after pathogen assault, together with a rise in free linolenic acid and OPDA concentrations. However, jasmonic acid (JA) could not be detected in healthy or infected tissues of this plant. Our results suggest that, although conserved defence signals, such as SA and OPDA, are synthesized and are probably involved in the defence response of P. patens against B. cinerea infection, JA production appears to be missing. Interestingly, P. patens responds to OPDA and methyl jasmonate by reducing moss colony growth and rhizoid length, suggesting that jasmonate perception is present in mosses. Thus, P. patens can provide clues with regard to the evolution of different defence pathways in plants, including signalling and perception of OPDA and jasmonates in nonflowering and flowering plants.

  8. Evolutionary theories of aging and longevity.

    PubMed

    Gavrilov, Leonid A; Gavrilova, Natalia S

    2002-02-01

    The purpose of this article is to provide students and researchers entering the field of aging studies with an introduction to the evolutionary theories of aging, as well as to orient them in the abundant modern scientific literature on evolutionary gerontology. The following three major evolutionary theories of aging are discussed: 1) the theory of programmed death suggested by August Weismann, 2) the mutation accumulation theory of aging suggested by Peter Medawar, and 3) the antagonistic pleiotropy theory of aging suggested by George Williams. We also discuss a special case of the antagonistic pleiotropy theory, the disposable soma theory developed by Tom Kirkwood and Robin Holliday. The theories are compared with each other as well as with recent experimental findings. At present the most viable evolutionary theories are the mutation accumulation theory and the antagonistic pleiotropy theory; these theories are not mutually exclusive, and they both may become a part of a future unifying theory of aging. Evolutionary theories of aging are useful because they open new opportunities for further research by suggesting testable predictions, but they have also been harmful in the past when they were used to impose limitations on aging studies. At this time, the evolutionary theories of aging are not ultimate completed theories, but rather a set of ideas that themselves require further elaboration and validation. This theoretical review article is written for a wide readership. PMID:12806021

  9. The meaning of birth and death (in macroevolutionary birth-death models).

    PubMed

    Ezard, Thomas H G; Pearson, Paul N; Aze, Tracy; Purvis, Andy

    2012-02-23

    Birth-death models are central to much macroevolutionary theory. The fundamental parameters of these models concern durations. Different species concepts realize different species durations because they represent different ideas of what birth (speciation) and death (extinction) mean. Here, we use Cenozoic macroperforate planktonic foraminifera as a case study to ask: what are the dynamical consequences of changing the definition of birth and death? We show strong evidence for biotic constraints on diversification using evolutionary species, but less with morphospecies. Discussing reasons for this discrepancy, we emphasize that clarity of species concept leads to clarity of meaning when interpreting macroevolutionary birth-death models. PMID:21900313

  10. [Accompany death].

    PubMed

    Salvador Borrell, Montserrat

    2010-11-01

    One of the roles of nursing is to take care of the patients in terminal situation. The time, the experience, the formation, and the personal and professional attitudes that the nurse has will propitiate that taking care of moribund patients might turn into one of the more rewarding human experiences in life. There for, it is indispensable that nurses assume death as a natural and inevitable reality to achieve. The principal aim of the study is to evaluate the competence of confrontation and the autoefficiency of the welfare among nurses who work with adult patients at the end of the life. Descriptive study realized in the units of Oncology, Hametology and Palliative Care of the following centers: La Fe, Clínico, Dr. Peset, H. General, Arnau de Vilanova and Dr. Moliner de Portacoelli in Valencia (Spain). The following instruments were used: the Bugen Scale of confrontation of the Death (1980-1981) and the Robbins Scale of Autoefficiency (1992). Data suggests that major coping gives major autoeffciency and vice versa. The realized study opens numerous questions, specially related with training and the burden of preparation along the whole professional career, in order to achieve competence for coping and autoefficiency.

  11. [Evolution of evolutionary physiology].

    PubMed

    Natochin, Iu V

    2008-09-01

    In 19th century and at the beginning 20th century, reports appeared in the field of comparative and ontogenetic physiology and the value of these methods for understanding of evolution of functions. The term "evolutionary physiology" was suggested by A. N. Severtsov in 1914. In the beginning of 30s, in the USSR, laboratories for researches in problems of evolutionary physiology were created, the results of these researches having been published. In 1956 in Leningrad, the Institute of Evolutionary Physiology was founded by L. A. Orbeli. He formulates the goals and methods of evolutionary physiology. In the following half a century, the evolutionary physiology was actively developed. The evolutionary physiology solves problems of evolution of function of functions evolution, often involving methods of adjacent sciences, including biochemistry, morphology, molecular biology.

  12. On evolutionary causes and evolutionary processes.

    PubMed

    Laland, Kevin N

    2015-08-01

    In this essay I consider how biologists understand 'causation' and 'evolutionary process', drawing attention to some idiosyncrasies in the use of these terms. I suggest that research within the evolutionary sciences has been channeled in certain directions and not others by scientific conventions, many of which have now become counterproductive. These include the views (i) that evolutionary processes are restricted to those phenomena that directly change gene frequencies, (ii) that understanding the causes of both ecological change and ontogeny is beyond the remit of evolutionary biology, and (iii) that biological causation can be understood by a dichotomous proximate-ultimate distinction, with developmental processes perceived as solely relevant to proximate causation. I argue that the notion of evolutionary process needs to be broadened to accommodate phenomena such as developmental bias and niche construction that bias the course of evolution, but do not directly change gene frequencies, and that causation in biological systems is fundamentally reciprocal in nature. This article is part of a Special Issue entitled: In Honor of Jerry Hogan.

  13. Invariant death

    PubMed Central

    Frank, Steven A.

    2016-01-01

    In nematodes, environmental or physiological perturbations alter death’s scaling of time. In human cancer, genetic perturbations alter death’s curvature of time. Those changes in scale and curvature follow the constraining contours of death’s invariant geometry. I show that the constraints arise from a fundamental extension to the theories of randomness, invariance and scale. A generalized Gompertz law follows. The constraints imposed by the invariant Gompertz geometry explain the tendency of perturbations to stretch or bend death’s scaling of time. Variability in death rate arises from a combination of constraining universal laws and particular biological processes. PMID:27785361

  14. Programmed cell death in the plant immune system

    PubMed Central

    Coll, N S; Epple, P; Dangl, J L

    2011-01-01

    Cell death has a central role in innate immune responses in both plants and animals. Besides sharing striking convergences and similarities in the overall evolutionary organization of their innate immune systems, both plants and animals can respond to infection and pathogen recognition with programmed cell death. The fact that plant and animal pathogens have evolved strategies to subvert specific cell death modalities emphasizes the essential role of cell death during immune responses. The hypersensitive response (HR) cell death in plants displays morphological features, molecular architectures and mechanisms reminiscent of different inflammatory cell death types in animals (pyroptosis and necroptosis). In this review, we describe the molecular pathways leading to cell death during innate immune responses. Additionally, we present recently discovered caspase and caspase-like networks regulating cell death that have revealed fascinating analogies between cell death control across both kingdoms. PMID:21475301

  15. Encountering Death: Structured Activities for Death Awareness.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Welch, Ira David; And Others

    This book is intended to be used as a supplement to standard textbooks on death and dying for college students. Chapter 1 "Encountering Death in the Self" builds the foundation for increased self-awareness for the study of death and dying. Chapter 2 "Encountering Death in the Family" provides activities which are appropriate for a wide variety of…

  16. Polymorphic Evolutionary Games.

    PubMed

    Fishman, Michael A

    2016-06-01

    In this paper, I present an analytical framework for polymorphic evolutionary games suitable for explicitly modeling evolutionary processes in diploid populations with sexual reproduction. The principal aspect of the proposed approach is adding diploid genetics cum sexual recombination to a traditional evolutionary game, and switching from phenotypes to haplotypes as the new game׳s pure strategies. Here, the relevant pure strategy׳s payoffs derived by summing the payoffs of all the phenotypes capable of producing gametes containing that particular haplotype weighted by the pertinent probabilities. The resulting game is structurally identical to the familiar Evolutionary Games with non-linear pure strategy payoffs (Hofbauer and Sigmund, 1998. Cambridge University Press), and can be analyzed in terms of an established analytical framework for such games. And these results can be translated into the terms of genotypic, and whence, phenotypic evolutionary stability pertinent to the original game.

  17. Evolutionary tree reconstruction

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Cheeseman, Peter; Kanefsky, Bob

    1990-01-01

    It is described how Minimum Description Length (MDL) can be applied to the problem of DNA and protein evolutionary tree reconstruction. If there is a set of mutations that transform a common ancestor into a set of the known sequences, and this description is shorter than the information to encode the known sequences directly, then strong evidence for an evolutionary relationship has been found. A heuristic algorithm is described that searches for the simplest tree (smallest MDL) that finds close to optimal trees on the test data. Various ways of extending the MDL theory to more complex evolutionary relationships are discussed.

  18. Evolutionary biology of language.

    PubMed Central

    Nowak, M A

    2000-01-01

    Language is the most important evolutionary invention of the last few million years. It was an adaptation that helped our species to exchange information, make plans, express new ideas and totally change the appearance of the planet. How human language evolved from animal communication is one of the most challenging questions for evolutionary biology The aim of this paper is to outline the major principles that guided language evolution in terms of mathematical models of evolutionary dynamics and game theory. I will discuss how natural selection can lead to the emergence of arbitrary signs, the formation of words and syntactic communication. PMID:11127907

  19. Evolutionary Mechanisms for Loneliness

    PubMed Central

    Cacioppo, John T.; Cacioppo, Stephanie; Boomsma, Dorret I.

    2013-01-01

    Robert Weiss (1973) conceptualized loneliness as perceived social isolation, which he described as a gnawing, chronic disease without redeeming features. On the scale of everyday life, it is understandable how something as personally aversive as loneliness could be regarded as a blight on human existence. However, evolutionary time and evolutionary forces operate at such a different scale of organization than we experience in everyday life that personal experience is not sufficient to understand the role of loneliness in human existence. Research over the past decade suggests a very different view of loneliness than suggested by personal experience, one in which loneliness serves a variety of adaptive functions in specific habitats. We review evidence on the heritability of loneliness and outline an evolutionary theory of loneliness, with an emphasis on its potential adaptive value in an evolutionary timescale. PMID:24067110

  20. Evolutionary behavioral genetics

    PubMed Central

    Zietsch, Brendan P.; de Candia, Teresa R; Keller, Matthew C.

    2014-01-01

    We describe the scientific enterprise at the intersection of evolutionary psychology and behavioral genetics—a field that could be termed Evolutionary Behavioral Genetics—and how modern genetic data is revolutionizing our ability to test questions in this field. We first explain how genetically informative data and designs can be used to investigate questions about the evolution of human behavior, and describe some of the findings arising from these approaches. Second, we explain how evolutionary theory can be applied to the investigation of behavioral genetic variation. We give examples of how new data and methods provide insight into the genetic architecture of behavioral variation and what this tells us about the evolutionary processes that acted on the underlying causal genetic variants. PMID:25587556

  1. Rethinking evolutionary individuality

    PubMed Central

    Ereshefsky, Marc; Pedroso, Makmiller

    2015-01-01

    This paper considers whether multispecies biofilms are evolutionary individuals. Numerous multispecies biofilms have characteristics associated with individuality, such as internal integrity, division of labor, coordination among parts, and heritable adaptive traits. However, such multispecies biofilms often fail standard reproductive criteria for individuality: they lack reproductive bottlenecks, are comprised of multiple species, do not form unified reproductive lineages, and fail to have a significant division of reproductive labor among their parts. If such biofilms are good candidates for evolutionary individuals, then evolutionary individuality is achieved through other means than frequently cited reproductive processes. The case of multispecies biofilms suggests that standard reproductive requirements placed on individuality should be reconsidered. More generally, the case of multispecies biofilms indicates that accounts of individuality that focus on single-species eukaryotes are too restrictive and that a pluralistic and open-ended account of evolutionary individuality is needed. PMID:26039982

  2. Death Education and Death Fear Reduction

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Mueller, Mary Louise

    1976-01-01

    The study examined the possibility of reducing the fear of death in early adolescents through a 12-lesson unit designed to assist the student to achieve an attitude of integration toward life and death. (NQ)

  3. The major evolutionary transitions.

    PubMed

    Szathmáry, E; Smith, J M

    1995-03-16

    There is no theoretical reason to expect evolutionary lineages to increase in complexity with time, and no empirical evidence that they do so. Nevertheless, eukaryotic cells are more complex than prokaryotic ones, animals and plants are more complex than protists, and so on. This increase in complexity may have been achieved as a result of a series of major evolutionary transitions. These involved changes in the way information is stored and transmitted.

  4. Sudden infant death syndrome

    MedlinePlus

    Crib death; SIDS ... However, SIDS is still a major cause of death in infants under 1 year old. Thousands of ... affects boys more often than girls. Most SIDS deaths occur in the winter. The following may increase ...

  5. Death: 'nothing' gives insight.

    PubMed

    Ettema, Eric J

    2013-08-01

    According to a widely accepted belief, we cannot know our own death--death means 'nothing' to us. At first sight, the meaning of 'nothing' just implies the negation or absence of 'something'. Death then simply refers to the negation or absence of life. As a consequence, however, death has no meaning of itself. This leads to an ontological paradox in which death is both acknowledged and denied: death is … nothing. In this article, I investigate whether insight into the ontological paradox of the nothingness of death can contribute to a good end-of-life. By analysing Aquinas', Heidegger's and Derrida's understanding of death as nothingness, I explore how giving meaning to death on different ontological levels connects to, and at the same time provides resistance against, the harsh reality of death. By doing so, I intend to demonstrate that insight into the nothingness of death can count as a framework for a meaningful dealing with death.

  6. Proteomics in evolutionary ecology.

    PubMed

    Baer, B; Millar, A H

    2016-03-01

    Evolutionary ecologists are traditionally gene-focused, as genes propagate phenotypic traits across generations and mutations and recombination in the DNA generate genetic diversity required for evolutionary processes. As a consequence, the inheritance of changed DNA provides a molecular explanation for the functional changes associated with natural selection. A direct focus on proteins on the other hand, the actual molecular agents responsible for the expression of a phenotypic trait, receives far less interest from ecologists and evolutionary biologists. This is partially due to the central dogma of molecular biology that appears to define proteins as the 'dead-end of molecular information flow' as well as technical limitations in identifying and studying proteins and their diversity in the field and in many of the more exotic genera often favored in ecological studies. Here we provide an overview of a newly forming field of research that we refer to as 'Evolutionary Proteomics'. We point out that the origins of cellular function are related to the properties of polypeptide and RNA and their interactions with the environment, rather than DNA descent, and that the critical role of horizontal gene transfer in evolution is more about coopting new proteins to impact cellular processes than it is about modifying gene function. Furthermore, post-transcriptional and post-translational processes generate a remarkable diversity of mature proteins from a single gene, and the properties of these mature proteins can also influence inheritance through genetic and perhaps epigenetic mechanisms. The influence of post-transcriptional diversification on evolutionary processes could provide a novel mechanistic underpinning for elements of rapid, directed evolutionary changes and adaptations as observed for a variety of evolutionary processes. Modern state-of the art technologies based on mass spectrometry are now available to identify and quantify peptides, proteins, protein

  7. Applying evolutionary anthropology.

    PubMed

    Gibson, Mhairi A; Lawson, David W

    2015-01-01

    Evolutionary anthropology provides a powerful theoretical framework for understanding how both current environments and legacies of past selection shape human behavioral diversity. This integrative and pluralistic field, combining ethnographic, demographic, and sociological methods, has provided new insights into the ultimate forces and proximate pathways that guide human adaptation and variation. Here, we present the argument that evolutionary anthropological studies of human behavior also hold great, largely untapped, potential to guide the design, implementation, and evaluation of social and public health policy. Focusing on the key anthropological themes of reproduction, production, and distribution we highlight classic and recent research demonstrating the value of an evolutionary perspective to improving human well-being. The challenge now comes in transforming relevance into action and, for that, evolutionary behavioral anthropologists will need to forge deeper connections with other applied social scientists and policy-makers. We are hopeful that these developments are underway and that, with the current tide of enthusiasm for evidence-based approaches to policy, evolutionary anthropology is well positioned to make a strong contribution.

  8. Paleoanthropology and evolutionary theory.

    PubMed

    Tattersall, Ian

    2012-01-01

    Paleoanthropologists of the first half of the twentieth century were little concerned either with evolutionary theory or with the technicalities and broader implications of zoological nomenclature. In consequence, the paleoanthropological literature of the period consisted largely of a series of descriptions accompanied by authoritative pronouncements, together with a huge excess of hominid genera and species. Given the intellectual flimsiness of the resulting paleoanthropological framework, it is hardly surprising that in 1950 the ornithologist Ernst Mayr met little resistance when he urged the new postwar generation of paleoanthropologists to accept not only the elegant reductionism of the Evolutionary Synthesis but a vast oversimplification of hominid phylogenetic history and nomenclature. Indeed, the impact of Mayr's onslaught was so great that even when developments in evolutionary biology during the last quarter of the century brought other paleontologists to the realization that much more has been involved in evolutionary histories than the simple action of natural selection within gradually transforming lineages, paleoanthropologists proved highly reluctant to follow. Even today, paleoanthropologists are struggling to reconcile an intuitive realization that the burgeoning hominid fossil record harbors a substantial diversity of species (bringing hominid evolutionary patterns into line with that of other successful mammalian families), with the desire to cram a huge variety of morphologies into an unrealistically minimalist systematic framework. As long as this theoretical ambivalence persists, our perception of events in hominid phylogeny will continue to be distorted.

  9. Applying Evolutionary Anthropology

    PubMed Central

    Gibson, Mhairi A; Lawson, David W

    2015-01-01

    Evolutionary anthropology provides a powerful theoretical framework for understanding how both current environments and legacies of past selection shape human behavioral diversity. This integrative and pluralistic field, combining ethnographic, demographic, and sociological methods, has provided new insights into the ultimate forces and proximate pathways that guide human adaptation and variation. Here, we present the argument that evolutionary anthropological studies of human behavior also hold great, largely untapped, potential to guide the design, implementation, and evaluation of social and public health policy. Focusing on the key anthropological themes of reproduction, production, and distribution we highlight classic and recent research demonstrating the value of an evolutionary perspective to improving human well-being. The challenge now comes in transforming relevance into action and, for that, evolutionary behavioral anthropologists will need to forge deeper connections with other applied social scientists and policy-makers. We are hopeful that these developments are underway and that, with the current tide of enthusiasm for evidence-based approaches to policy, evolutionary anthropology is well positioned to make a strong contribution. PMID:25684561

  10. Ecological and evolutionary traps

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Schlaepfer, Martin A.; Runge, M.C.; Sherman, P.W.

    2002-01-01

    Organisms often rely on environmental cues to make behavioral and life-history decisions. However, in environments that have been altered suddenly by humans, formerly reliable cues might no longer be associated with adaptive outcomes. In such cases, organisms can become 'trapped' by their evolutionary responses to the cues and experience reduced survival or reproduction. Ecological traps occur when organisms make poor habitat choices based on cues that correlated formerly with habitat quality. Ecological traps are part of a broader phenomenon, evolutionary traps, involving a dissociation between cues that organisms use to make any behavioral or life-history decision and outcomes normally associated with that decision. A trap can lead to extinction if a population falls below a critical size threshold before adaptation to the novel environment occurs. Conservation and management protocols must be designed in light of, rather than in spite of, the behavioral mechanisms and evolutionary history of populations and species to avoid 'trapping' them.

  11. Evolutionary Debunking Arguments

    PubMed Central

    Kahane, Guy

    2011-01-01

    Evolutionary debunking arguments (EDAs) are arguments that appeal to the evolutionary origins of evaluative beliefs to undermine their justification. This paper aims to clarify the premises and presuppositions of EDAs—a form of argument that is increasingly put to use in normative ethics. I argue that such arguments face serious obstacles. It is often overlooked, for example, that they presuppose the truth of metaethical objectivism. More importantly, even if objectivism is assumed, the use of EDAs in normative ethics is incompatible with a parallel and more sweeping global evolutionary debunking argument that has been discussed in recent metaethics. After examining several ways of responding to this global debunking argument, I end by arguing that even if we could resist it, this would still not rehabilitate the current targeted use of EDAs in normative ethics given that, if EDAs work at all, they will in any case lead to a truly radical revision of our evaluative outlook. PMID:21949447

  12. Human nutrition: evolutionary perspectives.

    PubMed

    Barnicot, N A

    2005-01-01

    In recent decades, much new evidence relating to the ape forerunners of modern humans has come to hand and diet appears to be an important factor. At some stage, there must have been a transition from a largely vegetarian ape diet to a modern human hunting economy providing significant amounts of meat. On an even longer evolutionary time scale the change was more complex. The mechanisms of evolutionary change are now better understood than they were in Darwin's time, thanks largely to great advances in genetics, both experimental and theoretical. It is virtually certain that diet, as a major component of the human environment, must have exerted evolutionary effects, but researchers still have little good evidence. PMID:17393680

  13. Children and Death.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Brennan, Andrew J. J.

    Health professionals and educators should develop their abilities to educate about death and to comfort the bereaved. Due to lower death rates, the lack of philosophical religious views, and distorted perceptions of death contributed by television, death has become a mystery instead of a segment of the common experience. Particularly when a child…

  14. Investigating human evolutionary history

    PubMed Central

    WOOD, BERNARD

    2000-01-01

    We rely on fossils for the interpretation of more than 95% of our evolutionary history. Fieldwork resulting in the recovery of fresh fossil evidence is an important component of reconstructing human evolutionary history, but advances can also be made by extracting additional evidence for the existing fossil record, and by improving the methods used to interpret the fossil evidence. This review shows how information from imaging and dental microstructure has contributed to improving our understanding of the hominin fossil record. It also surveys recent advances in the use of the fossil record for phylogenetic inference. PMID:10999269

  15. The fastest evolutionary trajectory

    PubMed Central

    Traulsen, Arne; Iwasa, Yoh; Nowak, Martin A.

    2008-01-01

    Given two mutants, A and B, separated by n mutational steps, what is the evolutionary trajectory which allows a homogeneous population of A to reach B in the shortest time? We show that the optimum evolutionary trajectory (fitness landscape) has the property that the relative fitness increase between any two consecutive steps is constant. Hence, the optimum fitness landscape between A and B is given by an exponential function. Our result is precise for small mutation rates and excluding back mutations. We discuss deviations for large mutation rates and including back mutations. For very large mutation rates, the optimum fitness landscape is flat and has a single peak at type B. PMID:17900629

  16. Hybridization facilitates evolutionary rescue

    PubMed Central

    Stelkens, Rike B; Brockhurst, Michael A; Hurst, Gregory D D; Greig, Duncan

    2014-01-01

    The resilience of populations to rapid environmental degradation is a major concern for biodiversity conservation. When environments deteriorate to lethal levels, species must evolve to adapt to the new conditions to avoid extinction. Here, we test the hypothesis that evolutionary rescue may be enabled by hybridization, because hybridization increases genetic variability. Using experimental evolution, we show that interspecific hybrid populations of Saccharomyces yeast adapt to grow in more highly degraded environments than intraspecific and parental crosses, resulting in survival rates far exceeding those of their ancestors. We conclude that hybridization can increase evolutionary responsiveness and that taxa able to exchange genes with distant relatives may better survive rapid environmental change. PMID:25558281

  17. The child and the fear of death.

    PubMed

    Mitchell, N L; Schulman, K R

    1981-10-01

    The central hypothesis of this paper is that the innate fear of death in the human being is universal and that the child, least of all, is immune to death fear and its symbolic representation. This cuts across all ages and developmental levels. This paper is not concerned with the empirical knowledge of death, an area that has been extensively explored by others such as Nagy (1948), Piaget (1929), and Anthony (1940).Examination of the child and his relationship to death is important in order to reach the truth and understand the human meaning of the fear of death.The child's conception of himself and his relationship to the world is an ironic paradox. On one hand, he feels endowed with magical feelings of omnipotence. This feeling is the main defense against the fear of death. On the other hand, his wishes, both benevolent and malevolent, have power independent of him to influence events. The concept of chance is alien, and the differentiation between objective and wishful causation is obscured. Thus, the way in which the child perceives his world makes the terror of death more formidable.SEVERAL CONCLUSIONS ARE REACHED IN THIS PAPER: (1) that even in childhood, loss, endings, separations, and death are core concerns of the individual; (2) that fear of death in children is intensified by the absence of the intellectual equipment and the absence of the necessary defense mechanisms essential for comprehending the experience of loss; and (3) that repression of the fear of death is an evolutionary process which has its origin in childhood. PMID:7310912

  18. The Child and the Fear of Death

    PubMed Central

    Mitchell, Nelli L.; Schulman, Karen R.

    1981-01-01

    The central hypothesis of this paper is that the innate fear of death in the human being is universal and that the child, least of all, is immune to death fear and its symbolic representation. This cuts across all ages and developmental levels. This paper is not concerned with the empirical knowledge of death, an area that has been extensively explored by others such as Nagy (1948), Piaget (1929), and Anthony (1940). Examination of the child and his relationship to death is important in order to reach the truth and understand the human meaning of the fear of death. The child's conception of himself and his relationship to the world is an ironic paradox. On one hand, he feels endowed with magical feelings of omnipotence. This feeling is the main defense against the fear of death. On the other hand, his wishes, both benevolent and malevolent, have power independent of him to influence events. The concept of chance is alien, and the differentiation between objective and wishful causation is obscured. Thus, the way in which the child perceives his world makes the terror of death more formidable. Several conclusions are reached in this paper: (1) that even in childhood, loss, endings, separations, and death are core concerns of the individual; (2) that fear of death in children is intensified by the absence of the intellectual equipment and the absence of the necessary defense mechanisms essential for comprehending the experience of loss; and (3) that repression of the fear of death is an evolutionary process which has its origin in childhood. PMID:7310912

  19. EVOLUTIONARY FOUNDATIONS FOR MOLECULAR MEDICINE

    PubMed Central

    Nesse, Randolph M.; Ganten, Detlev; Gregory, T. Ryan; Omenn, Gilbert S.

    2015-01-01

    Evolution has long provided a foundation for population genetics, but many major advances in evolutionary biology from the 20th century are only now being applied in molecular medicine. They include the distinction between proximate and evolutionary explanations, kin selection, evolutionary models for cooperation, and new strategies for tracing phylogenies and identifying signals of selection. Recent advances in genomics are further transforming evolutionary biology and creating yet more opportunities for progress at the interface of evolution with genetics, medicine, and public health. This article reviews 15 evolutionary principles and their applications in molecular medicine in hopes that readers will use them and others to speed the development of evolutionary molecular medicine. PMID:22544168

  20. Origins of evolutionary transitions.

    PubMed

    Clarke, Ellen

    2014-04-01

    An 'evolutionary transition in individuality' or 'major transition' is a transformation in the hierarchical level at which natural selection operates on a population. In this article I give an abstract (i.e. level-neutral and substrate-neutral) articulation of the transition process in order to precisely understand how such processes can happen, especially how they can get started. PMID:24736161

  1. Evolutionary Developmental Psychology.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Geary, David C.; Bjorklund, David F.

    2000-01-01

    Describes evolutionary developmental psychology as the study of the genetic and ecological mechanisms that govern the development of social and cognitive competencies common to all human beings and the epigenetic (gene-environment interactions) processes that adapt these competencies to local conditions. Outlines basic assumptions and domains of…

  2. Evolutionary developmental psychology.

    PubMed

    King, Ashley C; Bjorklund, David F

    2010-02-01

    The field of evolutionary developmental psychology can potentially broaden the horizons of mainstream evolutionary psychology by combining the principles of Darwinian evolution by natural selection with the study of human development, focusing on the epigenetic effects that occur between humans and their environment in a way that attempts to explain how evolved psychological mechanisms become expressed in the phenotypes of adults. An evolutionary developmental perspective includes an appreciation of comparative research and we, among others, argue that contrasting the cognition of humans with that of nonhuman primates can provide a framework with which to understand how human cognitive abilities and intelligence evolved. Furthermore, we argue that several aspects of childhood (e.g., play and immature cognition) serve both as deferred adaptations as well as imparting immediate benefits. Intense selection pressure was surely exerted on childhood over human evolutionary history and, as a result, neglecting to consider the early developmental period of children when studying their later adulthood produces an incomplete picture of the evolved adaptations expressed through human behavior and cognition.

  3. Learning: An Evolutionary Analysis

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Swann, Joanna

    2009-01-01

    This paper draws on the philosophy of Karl Popper to present a descriptive evolutionary epistemology that offers philosophical solutions to the following related problems: "What happens when learning takes place?" and "What happens in human learning?" It provides a detailed analysis of how learning takes place without any direct transfer of…

  4. Evolutionary pattern search algorithms

    SciTech Connect

    Hart, W.E.

    1995-09-19

    This paper defines a class of evolutionary algorithms called evolutionary pattern search algorithms (EPSAs) and analyzes their convergence properties. This class of algorithms is closely related to evolutionary programming, evolutionary strategie and real-coded genetic algorithms. EPSAs are self-adapting systems that modify the step size of the mutation operator in response to the success of previous optimization steps. The rule used to adapt the step size can be used to provide a stationary point convergence theory for EPSAs on any continuous function. This convergence theory is based on an extension of the convergence theory for generalized pattern search methods. An experimental analysis of the performance of EPSAs demonstrates that these algorithms can perform a level of global search that is comparable to that of canonical EAs. We also describe a stopping rule for EPSAs, which reliably terminated near stationary points in our experiments. This is the first stopping rule for any class of EAs that can terminate at a given distance from stationary points.

  5. Evolutionary Theories of Detection

    SciTech Connect

    Fitch, J P

    2005-04-29

    Current, mid-term and long range technologies for detection of pathogens and toxins are briefly described in the context of performance metrics and operational scenarios. Predictive (evolutionary) and speculative (revolutionary) assessments are given with trade-offs identified, where possible, among competing performance goals.

  6. [Schizophrenia and evolutionary psychopathology].

    PubMed

    Kelemen, Oguz; Kéri, Szabolcs

    2007-01-01

    Evolution can shape any characteristic appearing as a phenotype that is genetically rooted and possesses a long history. The stress-diathesis model suggests that psychiatric disorders have some genetic roots, and therefore the theory of evolution may be relevant for psychiatry. Schizophrenia is present in every human culture with approximately the same incidence. The great evolutionary paradox is: how can such illness persist despite fundamental reproductive disadvantages? Since the 1960s, several evolutionary explanations have been raised to explain the origins of schizophrenia. This article reviews all the major evolutionary theories about the possible origins of this disease. On the one hand, some researchers have proposed that schizophrenia is an evolutionary disadvantageous byproduct of human brain evolution (e.g. the evolution of hemispheric specialization, social brain or language skills). On the other hand, others have suggested that a compensatory advantage must exist either in the biological system of patients with schizophrenia (e.g. resistance against infectious diseases), or within the social domain (e.g. greater creativity of the relatives). According to some theories, shamanism and religion demonstrate some similarities to psychosis and provide clues regarding the origins of schizophrenia. At the end of this article we discuss this last theory in detail listing arguments for and against.

  7. Evolutionary Theory under Fire.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Lewin, Roger

    1980-01-01

    Summarizes events of a conference on evolutionary biology in Chicago entitled: "Macroevolution." Reviews the theory of modern synthesis, a term used to explain Darwinism in terms of population biology and genetics. Issues presented at the conference are discussed in detail. (CS)

  8. Evolutionary dynamics of taxonomic structure

    PubMed Central

    Foote, Michael

    2012-01-01

    The distribution of species among genera and higher taxa has largely untapped potential to reveal among-clade variation in rates of origination and extinction. The probability distribution of the number of species within a genus is modelled with a stochastic, time-homogeneous birth–death model having two parameters: the rate of species extinction, μ, and the rate of genus origination, γ, each scaled as a multiple of the rate of within-genus speciation, λ. The distribution is more sensitive to γ than to μ, although μ affects the size of the largest genera. The species : genus ratio depends strongly on both γ and μ, and so is not a good diagnostic of evolutionary dynamics. The proportion of monotypic genera, however, depends mainly on γ, and so may provide an index of the genus origination rate. Application to living marine molluscs of New Zealand shows that bivalves have a higher relative rate of genus origination than gastropods. This is supported by the analysis of palaeontological data. This concordance suggests that analysis of living taxonomic distributions may allow inference of macroevolutionary dynamics even without a fossil record. PMID:21865239

  9. Is death-feigning adaptive? Heritable variation in fitness difference of death-feigning behaviour.

    PubMed Central

    Miyatake, Takahisa; Katayama, Kohji; Takeda, Yukari; Nakashima, Akiko; Sugita, Atsushi; Mizumoto, Makoto

    2004-01-01

    The adaptation of death-feigning (thanatosis), a subject that has been overlooked in evolutionary biology, was inferred in a model prey-and-predator system. We studied phenotypic variation among individuals, fitness differences, and the inheritance of death-feigning behaviour in the red flour beetle, Tribolium castaneum (Herbst) (Coleoptera: Tenebrionidae). Two-way artificial selections for the duration of death-feigning, over 10 generations, showed a clear direct response in the trait and a correlated response in the frequency of death-feigning, thus indicating variation and inheritance of death-feigning behaviour. A comparison of the two selected strains with divergent frequencies of death-feigning showed a significant difference in the fitness for survival when a model predator, a female Adanson jumper spider, Hasarius adansoni Audouin (Araneomophae: Salticidae), was presented to the beetles. The frequency of predation was lower among beetles from strains selected for long-duration than among those for short-duration death-feigning. The results indicate the possibility of the evolution of death-feigning under natural selection. PMID:15539355

  10. Thinking about Death Reduces Delay Discounting

    PubMed Central

    Kelley, Nicholas J.; Schmeichel, Brandon J.

    2015-01-01

    The current study tested competing predictions regarding the effect of mortality salience on delay discounting. One prediction, based on evolutionary considerations, was that reminders of death increase the value of the present. Another prediction, based in part on construal level theory, was that reminders of death increase the value of the future. One-hundred eighteen participants thought about personal mortality or a control topic and then completed an inter-temporal choice task pitting the chance to gain $50 now against increasingly attractive rewards three months later. Consistent with the hypothesis inspired by construal theory, participants in the mortality salience condition traded $50 now for $66.67 in three months, whereas participants in the dental pain salience condition required $72.84 in three months in lieu of $50 now. Thus, participants in the mortality salience condition discounted future monetary gains less than other participants, suggesting that thoughts of death may increase the subjective value of the future. PMID:26630664

  11. Concept analysis of good death in terminally ill patients.

    PubMed

    Granda-Cameron, Clara; Houldin, Arlene

    2012-12-01

    The purpose of this concept analysis of good death was to examine the attributes of a good death and explore the changes of the concept over time and its impact on terminally ill patients. The method used for this analysis was the Rodgers' evolutionary method. A literature search was completed using Medline Ovid and Journal Storage (JSTOR).The findings describe the evolution of the good death concept over time from the prehistoric era followed by premodern, modern, and postmodern times. In addition, information is presented about surrogate terms, attributes, antecedents, and consequences associated with good death followed by analysis and discussion of the findings. General attributes of a good death include pain and symptom management, awareness of death, patient's dignity, family presence, family support, and communication among patient, family, and health care providers. PMID:22363039

  12. Concept analysis of good death in terminally ill patients.

    PubMed

    Granda-Cameron, Clara; Houldin, Arlene

    2012-12-01

    The purpose of this concept analysis of good death was to examine the attributes of a good death and explore the changes of the concept over time and its impact on terminally ill patients. The method used for this analysis was the Rodgers' evolutionary method. A literature search was completed using Medline Ovid and Journal Storage (JSTOR).The findings describe the evolution of the good death concept over time from the prehistoric era followed by premodern, modern, and postmodern times. In addition, information is presented about surrogate terms, attributes, antecedents, and consequences associated with good death followed by analysis and discussion of the findings. General attributes of a good death include pain and symptom management, awareness of death, patient's dignity, family presence, family support, and communication among patient, family, and health care providers.

  13. Virulence in malaria: an evolutionary viewpoint.

    PubMed Central

    Mackinnon, Margaret J; Read, Andrew F

    2004-01-01

    Malaria parasites cause much morbidity and mortality to their human hosts. From our evolutionary perspective, this is because virulence is positively associated with parasite transmission rate. Natural selection therefore drives virulence upwards, but only to the point where the cost to transmission caused by host death begins to outweigh the transmission benefits. In this review, we summarize data from the laboratory rodent malaria model, Plasmodium chabaudi, and field data on the human malaria parasite, P. falciparum, in relation to this virulence trade-off hypothesis. The data from both species show strong positive correlations between asexual multiplication, transmission rate, infection length, morbidity and mortality, and therefore support the underlying assumptions of the hypothesis. Moreover, the P. falciparum data show that expected total lifetime transmission of the parasite is maximized in young children in whom the fitness cost of host mortality balances the fitness benefits of higher transmission rates and slower clearance rates, thus exhibiting the hypothesized virulence trade-off. This evolutionary explanation of virulence appears to accord well with the clinical and molecular explanations of pathogenesis that involve cytoadherence, red cell invasion and immune evasion, although direct evidence of the fitness advantages of these mechanisms is scarce. One implication of this evolutionary view of virulence is that parasite populations are expected to evolve new levels of virulence in response to medical interventions such as vaccines and drugs. PMID:15306410

  14. Evolutionary biology of cancer.

    PubMed

    Crespi, Bernard; Summers, Kyle

    2005-10-01

    Cancer is driven by the somatic evolution of cell lineages that have escaped controls on replication and by the population-level evolution of genes that influence cancer risk. We describe here how recent evolutionary ecological studies have elucidated the roles of predation by the immune system and competition among normal and cancerous cells in the somatic evolution of cancer. Recent analyses of the evolution of cancer at the population level show how rapid changes in human environments have augmented cancer risk, how strong selection has frequently led to increased cancer risk as a byproduct, and how anticancer selection has led to tumor-suppression systems, tissue designs that slow somatic evolution, constraints on morphological evolution and even senescence itself. We discuss how applications of the tools of ecology and evolutionary biology are poised to revolutionize our understanding and treatment of this disease.

  15. Evolutionary Determinants of Cancer

    PubMed Central

    Greaves, Mel

    2015-01-01

    ‘Nothing in biology makes sense except in the light of evolution’ Th. Dobzhansky, 1973 Our understanding of cancer is being transformed by exploring clonal diversity, drug resistance and causation within an evolutionary framework. The therapeutic resilience of advanced cancer is a consequence of its character as complex, dynamic and adaptive ecosystem engendering robustness, underpinned by genetic diversity and epigenetic plasticity. The risk of mutation-driven escape by self-renewing cells is intrinsic to multicellularity but is countered by multiple restraints facilitating increasing complexity and longevity of species. But our own has disrupted this historical narrative by rapidly escalating intrinsic risk. Evolutionary principles illuminate these challenges and provide new avenues to explore for more effective control. PMID:26193902

  16. Evolutionary game theory

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Smith, John Maynard

    1986-10-01

    It is often the case that the best thing for an animal or plant to do depends on what other members of the population are doing. In more technical language, the fitnesses of different phenotypes are frequency-dependent. Evolutionary game theory has been developed to analyse such cases. In this paper I aim to do three things. First, I describe the concepts of evolutionary game theory in the context of a simple game, the Hawk-Dove game, and compare them with the concepts of classical game theory originating with Von Neumann and Morgenstern (1953) [1]. Second, I list some of the applications of the theory. Finally, I suggest how the theory can tell us something about the evolution of learning.

  17. Sudden Infant Death Syndrome

    MedlinePlus

    Sudden infant death syndrome (SIDS) is the sudden, unexplained death of an infant younger than one year old. Some people call ... boys, African Americans, and American Indian/Alaska Native infants have a higher risk of SIDS. Although health ...

  18. Predicting evolutionary dynamics

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Balazsi, Gabor

    We developed an ordinary differential equation-based model to predict the evolutionary dynamics of yeast cells carrying a synthetic gene circuit. The predicted aspects included the speed at which the ancestral genotype disappears from the population; as well as the types of mutant alleles that establish in each environmental condition. We validated these predictions by experimental evolution. The agreement between our predictions and experimental findings suggests that cellular and population fitness landscapes can be useful to predict short-term evolution.

  19. Evolutionary theory of cancer.

    PubMed

    Attolini, Camille Stephan-Otto; Michor, Franziska

    2009-06-01

    As Theodosius Dobzhansky famously noted in 1973, "Nothing in biology makes sense except in the light of evolution," and cancer is no exception to this rule. Our understanding of cancer initiation, progression, treatment, and resistance has advanced considerably by regarding cancer as the product of evolutionary processes. Here we review the literature of mathematical models of cancer evolution and provide a synthesis and discussion of the field.

  20. Suicide on death row.

    PubMed

    Lester, David; Tartaro, Christine

    2002-09-01

    The suicide rate on death row for the period 1976 through 1999 was found to be high (113 per 100,000 per year), some five times higher than the suicide rate for the male population of the United States. The death row suicide rate was predicted by features of the death row population (negatively with the population on death row) and by social indicators of the society as a whole (negatively with birth and divorce rates and positively with marriage rates).

  1. No life without death.

    PubMed

    Krammer, Peter H; Kamiński, Marcin; Kiessling, Michael; Gülow, Karsten

    2007-01-01

    Apoptosis-programed cell death-is the most common form of death in the body. Once apoptosis is induced, proper execution of the cell death program requires the coordinated activation and execution of multiple molecular processes. Here, we describe the pathways and the basic components of the death-inducing machinery. Since apoptosis is a key regulator of tissue homeostasis, an imbalance of apoptosis results in severe diseases like cancer, autoimmunity, and AIDS.

  2. Evolutionary theory and teleology.

    PubMed

    O'Grady, R T

    1984-04-21

    The order within and among living systems can be explained rationally by postulating a process of descent with modification, effected by factors which are extrinsic or intrinsic to the organisms. Because at the time Darwin proposed his theory of evolution there was no concept of intrinsic factors which could evolve, he postulated a process of extrinsic effects--natural selection. Biological order was thus seen as an imposed, rather than an emergent, property. Evolutionary change was seen as being determined by the functional efficiency (adaptedness) of the organism in its environment, rather than by spontaneous changes in intrinsically generated organizing factors. The initial incompleteness of Darwin's explanatory model, and the axiomatization of its postulates in neo-Darwinism, has resulted in a theory of functionalism, rather than structuralism. As such, it introduces an unnecessary teleology which confounds evolutionary studies and reduces the usefulness of the theory. This problem cannot be detected from within the neo-Darwinian paradigm because the different levels of end-directed activity--teleomatic, teleonomic, and teleological--are not recognized. They are, in fact, considered to influence one another. The theory of nonequilibrium evolution avoids these problems by returning to the basic principles of biological order and developing a structuralist explanation of intrinsically generated change. Extrinsic factors may affect the resultant evolutionary pattern, but they are neither necessary nor sufficient for evolution to occur.

  3. Evolutionary mysteries in meiosis.

    PubMed

    Lenormand, Thomas; Engelstädter, Jan; Johnston, Susan E; Wijnker, Erik; Haag, Christoph R

    2016-10-19

    Meiosis is a key event of sexual life cycles in eukaryotes. Its mechanistic details have been uncovered in several model organisms, and most of its essential features have received various and often contradictory evolutionary interpretations. In this perspective, we present an overview of these often 'weird' features. We discuss the origin of meiosis (origin of ploidy reduction and recombination, two-step meiosis), its secondary modifications (in polyploids or asexuals, inverted meiosis), its importance in punctuating life cycles (meiotic arrests, epigenetic resetting, meiotic asymmetry, meiotic fairness) and features associated with recombination (disjunction constraints, heterochiasmy, crossover interference and hotspots). We present the various evolutionary scenarios and selective pressures that have been proposed to account for these features, and we highlight that their evolutionary significance often remains largely mysterious. Resolving these mysteries will likely provide decisive steps towards understanding why sex and recombination are found in the majority of eukaryotes.This article is part of the themed issue 'Weird sex: the underappreciated diversity of sexual reproduction'.

  4. Asymmetric Evolutionary Games

    PubMed Central

    McAvoy, Alex; Hauert, Christoph

    2015-01-01

    Evolutionary game theory is a powerful framework for studying evolution in populations of interacting individuals. A common assumption in evolutionary game theory is that interactions are symmetric, which means that the players are distinguished by only their strategies. In nature, however, the microscopic interactions between players are nearly always asymmetric due to environmental effects, differing baseline characteristics, and other possible sources of heterogeneity. To model these phenomena, we introduce into evolutionary game theory two broad classes of asymmetric interactions: ecological and genotypic. Ecological asymmetry results from variation in the environments of the players, while genotypic asymmetry is a consequence of the players having differing baseline genotypes. We develop a theory of these forms of asymmetry for games in structured populations and use the classical social dilemmas, the Prisoner’s Dilemma and the Snowdrift Game, for illustrations. Interestingly, asymmetric games reveal essential differences between models of genetic evolution based on reproduction and models of cultural evolution based on imitation that are not apparent in symmetric games. PMID:26308326

  5. Evolutionary consequences of autopolyploidy.

    PubMed

    Parisod, Christian; Holderegger, Rolf; Brochmann, Christian

    2010-04-01

    Autopolyploidy is more common in plants than traditionally assumed, but has received little attention compared with allopolyploidy. Hence, the advantages and disadvantages of genome doubling per se compared with genome doubling coupled with hybridizations in allopolyploids remain unclear. Autopolyploids are characterized by genomic redundancy and polysomic inheritance, increasing effective population size. To shed light on the evolutionary consequences of autopolyploidy, we review a broad range of studies focusing on both synthetic and natural autopolyploids encompassing levels of biological organization from genes to evolutionary lineages. The limited evidence currently available suggests that autopolyploids neither experience strong genome restructuring nor wide reorganization of gene expression during the first generations following genome doubling, but that these processes may become more important in the longer term. Biogeographic and ecological surveys point to an association between the formation of autopolyploid lineages and environmental change. We thus hypothesize that polysomic inheritance may provide a short-term evolutionary advantage for autopolyploids compared to diploid relatives when environmental change enforces range shifts. In addition, autopolyploids should possess increased genome flexibility, allowing them to adapt and persist across heterogeneous landscapes in the long run. PMID:20070540

  6. Evolutionary mysteries in meiosis.

    PubMed

    Lenormand, Thomas; Engelstädter, Jan; Johnston, Susan E; Wijnker, Erik; Haag, Christoph R

    2016-10-19

    Meiosis is a key event of sexual life cycles in eukaryotes. Its mechanistic details have been uncovered in several model organisms, and most of its essential features have received various and often contradictory evolutionary interpretations. In this perspective, we present an overview of these often 'weird' features. We discuss the origin of meiosis (origin of ploidy reduction and recombination, two-step meiosis), its secondary modifications (in polyploids or asexuals, inverted meiosis), its importance in punctuating life cycles (meiotic arrests, epigenetic resetting, meiotic asymmetry, meiotic fairness) and features associated with recombination (disjunction constraints, heterochiasmy, crossover interference and hotspots). We present the various evolutionary scenarios and selective pressures that have been proposed to account for these features, and we highlight that their evolutionary significance often remains largely mysterious. Resolving these mysteries will likely provide decisive steps towards understanding why sex and recombination are found in the majority of eukaryotes.This article is part of the themed issue 'Weird sex: the underappreciated diversity of sexual reproduction'. PMID:27619705

  7. Dreams of Death.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Barrett, Deirdre

    1989-01-01

    Examined frequency and characteristics of overt dreams of dying among healthy young adults. Dreams of dying were found to be rare but distinctive content category, representing overwhelmingly pleasant dreams. Over one-half of death dreams involved lengthy afterlife sequence, remainder focused on process of death. Death dreams of these healthy…

  8. Evolutionary Design in Biology

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wiese, Kay C.

    Much progress has been achieved in recent years in molecular biology and genetics. The sheer volume of data in the form of biological sequences has been enormous and efficient methods for dealing with these huge amounts of data are needed. In addition, the data alone does not provide information on the workings of biological systems; hence much research effort has focused on designing mathematical and computational models to address problems from molecular biology. Often, the terms bioinformatics and computational biology are used to refer to the research fields concerning themselves with designing solutions to molecular problems in biology. However, there is a slight distinction between bioinformatics and computational biology: the former is concerned with managing the enormous amounts of biological data and extracting information from it, while the latter is more concerned with the design and development of new algorithms to address problems such as protein or RNA folding. However, the boundary is blurry, and there is no consistent usage of the terms. We will use the term bioinformatics to encompass both fields. To cover all areas of research in bioinformatics is beyond the scope of this section and we refer the interested reader to [2] for a general introduction. A large part of what bioinformatics is concerned about is evolution and function of biological systems on a molecular level. Evolutionary computation and evolutionary design are concerned with developing computational systems that "mimic" certain aspects of natural evolution (mutation, crossover, selection, fitness). Much of the inner workings of natural evolutionary systems have been copied, sometimes in modified format into evolutionary computation systems. Artificial neural networks mimic the functioning of simple brain cell clusters. Fuzzy systems are concerned with the "fuzzyness" in decision making, similar to a human expert. These three computational paradigms fall into the category of

  9. On evolutionary systems.

    PubMed

    Alvarez de Lorenzana, J M; Ward, L M

    1987-01-01

    This paper develops a metatheoretical framework for understanding evolutionary systems (systems that develop in ways that increase their own variety). The framework addresses shortcomings seen in other popular systems theories. It concerns both living and nonliving systems, and proposes a metahierarchy of hierarchical systems. Thus, it potentially addresses systems at all descriptive levels. We restrict our definition of system to that of a core system whose parts have a different ontological status than the system, and characterize the core system in terms of five global properties: minimal length interval, minimal time interval, system cycle, total receptive capacity, and system potential. We propose two principles through the interaction of which evolutionary systems develop. The Principle of Combinatorial Expansion describes how a core system realizes its developmental potential through a process of progressive differentiation of the single primal state up to a limit stage. The Principle of Generative Condensation describes how the components of the last stage of combinatorial expansion condense and become the environment for and components of new, enriched systems. The early evolution of the Universe after the "big bang" is discussed in light of these ideas as an example of the application of the framework.

  10. On evolutionary systems.

    PubMed

    Alvarez de Lorenzana, J M; Ward, L M

    1987-01-01

    This paper develops a metatheoretical framework for understanding evolutionary systems (systems that develop in ways that increase their own variety). The framework addresses shortcomings seen in other popular systems theories. It concerns both living and nonliving systems, and proposes a metahierarchy of hierarchical systems. Thus, it potentially addresses systems at all descriptive levels. We restrict our definition of system to that of a core system whose parts have a different ontological status than the system, and characterize the core system in terms of five global properties: minimal length interval, minimal time interval, system cycle, total receptive capacity, and system potential. We propose two principles through the interaction of which evolutionary systems develop. The Principle of Combinatorial Expansion describes how a core system realizes its developmental potential through a process of progressive differentiation of the single primal state up to a limit stage. The Principle of Generative Condensation describes how the components of the last stage of combinatorial expansion condense and become the environment for and components of new, enriched systems. The early evolution of the Universe after the "big bang" is discussed in light of these ideas as an example of the application of the framework. PMID:3689299

  11. Evolutionary models of binaries

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    van Rensbergen, Walter; Mennekens, Nicki; de Greve, Jean-Pierre; Jansen, Kim; de Loore, Bert

    2011-07-01

    We have put on CDS a catalog containing 561 evolutionary models of binaries: J/A+A/487/1129 (Van Rensbergen+, 2008). The catalog covers a grid of binaries with a B-type primary at birth, different values for the initial mass ratio and a wide range of initial orbital periods. The evolution was calculated with the Brussels code in which we introduced the spinning up and the creation of a hot spot on the gainer or its accretion disk, caused by impacting mass coming from the donor. When the kinetic energy of fast rotation added to the radiative energy of the hot spot exceeds the binding energy, a fraction of the transferred matter leaves the system: the evolution is liberal during a short lasting era of rapid mass transfer. The spin-up of the gainer was modulated using both strong and weak tides. The catalog shows the results for both types. For comparison, we included the evolutionary tracks calculated with the conservative assumption. Binaries with an initial primary below 6 Msolar show hardly any mass loss from the system and thus evolve conservatively. Above this limit differences between liberal and conservative evolution grow with increasing initial mass of the primary star.

  12. Evolutionary status of Polaris

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Fadeyev, Yu. A.

    2015-05-01

    Hydrodynamic models of short-period Cepheids were computed to determine the pulsation period as a function of evolutionary time during the first and third crossings of the instability strip. The equations of radiation hydrodynamics and turbulent convection for radial stellar pulsations were solved with the initial conditions obtained from the evolutionary models of Population I stars (X = 0.7, Z = 0.02) with masses from 5.2 to 6.5 M⊙ and the convective core overshooting parameter 0.1 ≤ αov ≤ 0.3. In Cepheids with period of 4 d the rate of pulsation period change during the first crossing of the instability strip is over 50 times larger than that during the third crossing. Polaris is shown to cross the instability strip for the first time and to be the fundamental mode pulsator. The best agreement between the predicted and observed rates of period change was obtained for the model with mass of 5.4 M⊙ and the overshooting parameter αov = 0.25. The bolometric luminosity and radius are L = 1.26 × 103 L⊙ and R = 37.5 R⊙, respectively. In the HR diagram, Polaris is located at the red edge of the instability strip.

  13. The Effects of Death Education.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Freitag, Carl B.; Hassler, Shawn David

    Although fear of death is recorded in the writings of the oldest major religions, the study of death and the fear of death have only occurred for the last few decades. Death education courses have grown in number since the early 1970's. College students participated in an investigation of the effects of death education on death anxiety by…

  14. Spore: Spawning Evolutionary Misconceptions?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bean, Thomas E.; Sinatra, Gale M.; Schrader, P. G.

    2010-10-01

    The use of computer simulations as educational tools may afford the means to develop understanding of evolution as a natural, emergent, and decentralized process. However, special consideration of developmental constraints on learning may be necessary when using these technologies. Specifically, the essentialist (biological forms possess an immutable essence), teleological (assignment of purpose to living things and/or parts of living things that may not be purposeful), and intentionality (assumption that events are caused by an intelligent agent) biases may be reinforced through the use of computer simulations, rather than addressed with instruction. We examine the video game Spore for its depiction of evolutionary content and its potential to reinforce these cognitive biases. In particular, we discuss three pedagogical strategies to mitigate weaknesses of Spore and other computer simulations: directly targeting misconceptions through refutational approaches, targeting specific principles of scientific inquiry, and directly addressing issues related to models as cognitive tools.

  15. Brain Death and Islam

    PubMed Central

    Ziad-Miller, Amna; Elamin, Elamin M.

    2014-01-01

    How one defines death may vary. It is important for clinicians to recognize those aspects of a patient’s religious beliefs that may directly influence medical care and how such practices may interface with local laws governing the determination of death. Debate continues about the validity and certainty of brain death criteria within Islamic traditions. A search of PubMed, Scopus, EMBASE, Web of Science, PsycNet, Sociological Abstracts, DIALOGUE ProQuest, Lexus Nexus, Google, and applicable religious texts was conducted to address the question of whether brain death is accepted as true death among Islamic scholars and clinicians and to discuss how divergent opinions may affect clinical care. The results of the literature review inform this discussion. Brain death has been acknowledged as representing true death by many Muslim scholars and medical organizations, including the Islamic Fiqh Academies of the Organization of the Islamic Conference and the Muslim World League, the Islamic Medical Association of North America, and other faith-based medical organizations as well as legal rulings by multiple Islamic nations. However, consensus in the Muslim world is not unanimous, and a sizable minority accepts death by cardiopulmonary criteria only. PMID:25287999

  16. Conflicting Thoughts about Death

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Harris, Paul L.

    2011-01-01

    Most research on children's conception of death has probed their understanding of its biological aspects: its inevitability, irreversibility and terminal impact. Yet many adults subscribe to a religious conception implying that death marks the beginning of a new life. Two recent empirical studies confirm that in the course of development, children…

  17. Death Acceptance through Ritual

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Reeves, Nancy C.

    2011-01-01

    This article summarizes the author's original research, which sought to discover the elements necessary for using death-related ritual as a psychotherapeutic technique for grieving people who experience their grief as "stuck," "unending," "maladaptive," and so on. A "death-related ritual" is defined as a ceremony, directly involving at least 1…

  18. Near-death experiences.

    PubMed

    Blackmore, S J

    1996-02-01

    Reactions to claims of near-death experiences (NDE) range from the popular view that this must be evidence for life after death, to outright rejection of the experiences as, at best, drug induced hallucinations or, at worse, pure invention. Twenty years, and much research, later, it is clear that neither extreme is correct.

  19. The Psychology of Death

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Fields, B. Celestine

    1976-01-01

    Forty-eight black men and women living and/or attending school in the St. Louis and Washington, D.C. areas responded to questionnaires concerning feelings, attitudes, emotions, etc. towards death and dying. It is concluded that blacks see death as a very significant happening; and that although in some areas blacks have become Americanized in…

  20. Death Writ Large

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Kastenbaum, Robert

    2004-01-01

    Mainstream thanatology has devoted its efforts to improving the understanding, care, and social integration of people who are confronted with life-threatening illness or bereavement. This article suggests that it might now be time to expand the scope and mission to include large-scale death and death that occurs through complex and multi-domain…

  1. Near-death experiences.

    PubMed Central

    Blackmore, S J

    1996-01-01

    Reactions to claims of near-death experiences (NDE) range from the popular view that this must be evidence for life after death, to outright rejection of the experiences as, at best, drug induced hallucinations or, at worse, pure invention. Twenty years, and much research, later, it is clear that neither extreme is correct. PMID:8683504

  2. Mozart's illnesses and death.

    PubMed Central

    Davies, P J

    1983-01-01

    Throughout his life Mozart suffered frequent attacks of tonsillitis. In 1784 he developed post-streptococcal Schönlein-Henoch syndrome which caused chronic glomerular nephritis and chronic renal failure. His fatal illness was due to Schönlein-Henoch purpura, with death from cerebral haemorrhage and bronchopneumonia. Venesection(s) may have contributed to his death. PMID:6352940

  3. Reflections on Death Education

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Riskey, Raymond J.

    1977-01-01

    The author comments on the need to discuss death openly in the classroom, noting that engaging students with the idea of coming to grips with the fact of their own death can prepare them for living, working, and loving more fully. (SH)

  4. SUICIDE ON DEATH ROW.

    PubMed

    Tartaro, Christine; Lester, David

    2015-12-01

    For the period 1976-2011, the suicide rate on death rows in the United States was only weakly (and non-significantly) associated with the marriage, birth, divorce, and unemployment rates in the general population. Possible explanations for why social indicators in the larger society might be associated with the behavior of prisoners on death row were discussed. PMID:26595302

  5. The Sociology of Death

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Fulton, Robert

    1977-01-01

    When we start to look at the issues associated with dying and death, we must do so in terms of the broadest parameters imaginable. Presented at the Conference on Death and Dying: Education, Counseling, and Care, December 1-3, 1976, Orlando, Florida. (Author)

  6. Programmed cell death

    SciTech Connect

    1995-12-31

    The purpose of this conference to provide a multidisciplinary forum for exchange of state-of-the-art information on the role programmed cell death plays in normal development and homeostasis of many organisms. This volume contains abstracts of papers in the following areas: invertebrate development; immunology/neurology; bcl-2 family; biochemistry; programmed cell death in viruses; oncogenesis; vertebrate development; and diseases.

  7. Natural death while driving.

    PubMed

    Oström, M; Eriksson, A

    1987-07-01

    Of sudden natural deaths while driving, 126 occurred during 1980 through 1985 in the northern half of Sweden. The mean age of the 69 car driver victims was 59 years, considerably higher than that of traumatic car deaths, and all but 2 were males. The mean age of 57 operators of other vehicles was 66 years, and of these, 6 were women. Seven car drivers were stricken during commercial employment. Most accidents occurred during daytime and the distribution of the weekdays was fairly even. Ischemic heart disease accounted for 112 deaths, and other cardiovascular diseases for an additional 9 deaths. Only 1/5 of the victims experienced previous symptoms of disease. Out of at least 31 other persons at risk in the car deaths, only 2 passengers suffered minor injuries. The trauma in the deceased was in most cases minor in both car and other vehicle deaths. Property damage was also minimal. At least 1/3 of the drivers were able to stop the car before becoming unconscious. In none of the car cases was alcohol detected in the blood, while alcohol was identified in at least 2 of the other vehicle victims. The findings here agree with previous studies that natural deaths at the wheel are fairly uncommon, and that the risk for other persons is not significant. The value of adequate postmortem examinations of drivers dying in traffic is stressed--natural deaths can otherwise be overlooked. PMID:3612079

  8. Death Obsession in Palestinians

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Abdel-Khalek, Ahmed M.; Al-Arja, Nahida S.; Abdalla, Taysir

    2006-01-01

    The authors explored death obsession level and correlates among a sample (N=601) of Palestinians living in the city of Beit Jala, the village of Al-Khader, and the Aida refugee camp in the Bethlehem area. They live in war conditions; the houses of half of them have been demolished. The Death Obsession Scale (DOS) was administered. Its alpha…

  9. Child Development and Evolutionary Psychology.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Bjorklund, David F.; Pellegrini, Anthony D.

    2000-01-01

    Argues that an evolutionary account provides insight into developmental function and individual differences. Outlines some assumptions of evolutionary psychology related to development. Introduces the developmental systems approach, differential influence of natural selection at different points in ontogeny, and development of evolved…

  10. Open Issues in Evolutionary Robotics.

    PubMed

    Silva, Fernando; Duarte, Miguel; Correia, Luís; Oliveira, Sancho Moura; Christensen, Anders Lyhne

    2016-01-01

    One of the long-term goals in evolutionary robotics is to be able to automatically synthesize controllers for real autonomous robots based only on a task specification. While a number of studies have shown the applicability of evolutionary robotics techniques for the synthesis of behavioral control, researchers have consistently been faced with a number of issues preventing the widespread adoption of evolutionary robotics for engineering purposes. In this article, we review and discuss the open issues in evolutionary robotics. First, we analyze the benefits and challenges of simulation-based evolution and subsequent deployment of controllers versus evolution on real robotic hardware. Second, we discuss specific evolutionary computation issues that have plagued evolutionary robotics: (1) the bootstrap problem, (2) deception, and (3) the role of genomic encoding and genotype-phenotype mapping in the evolution of controllers for complex tasks. Finally, we address the absence of standard research practices in the field. We also discuss promising avenues of research. Our underlying motivation is the reduction of the current gap between evolutionary robotics and mainstream robotics, and the establishment of evolutionary robotics as a canonical approach for the engineering of autonomous robots.

  11. Observability in dynamic evolutionary models.

    PubMed

    López, I; Gámez, M; Carreño, R

    2004-02-01

    In the paper observability problems are considered in basic dynamic evolutionary models for sexual and asexual populations. Observability means that from the (partial) knowledge of certain phenotypic characteristics the whole evolutionary process can be uniquely recovered. Sufficient conditions are given to guarantee observability for both sexual and asexual populations near an evolutionarily stable state.

  12. Death in Denmark.

    PubMed Central

    Evans, M

    1990-01-01

    Does it matter that the hearts of 'brainstem dead' patients may persist in beating spontaneously? Hostile reactions, to the Danish inclusion of cardiac criteria in the determination of death, betray reductionist views of human life at the core of 'brainstem' conceptions of death. Such views (whether centred on neurological function or on abstractions concerning 'personhood') supplant the richness of human life and death with the poverty of essentialism: and mask the lethal nature of beating-heart organ retrieval. The affirmation of cardiac criteria for death is not an alternative form of essentialism as some critics suppose, but part of an understanding of human life and death which rejects essentialism altogether. The spontaneously persistent heartbeat does not constitute human life, but most certainly counts for it. PMID:2287015

  13. Death in Denmark.

    PubMed

    Evans, M

    1990-12-01

    Does it matter that the hearts of 'brainstem dead' patients may persist in beating spontaneously? Hostile reactions, to the Danish inclusion of cardiac criteria in the determination of death, betray reductionist views of human life at the core of 'brainstem' conceptions of death. Such views (whether centred on neurological function or on abstractions concerning 'personhood') supplant the richness of human life and death with the poverty of essentialism: and mask the lethal nature of beating-heart organ retrieval. The affirmation of cardiac criteria for death is not an alternative form of essentialism as some critics suppose, but part of an understanding of human life and death which rejects essentialism altogether. The spontaneously persistent heartbeat does not constitute human life, but most certainly counts for it.

  14. How competition affects evolutionary rescue

    PubMed Central

    Osmond, Matthew Miles; de Mazancourt, Claire

    2013-01-01

    Populations facing novel environments can persist by adapting. In nature, the ability to adapt and persist will depend on interactions between coexisting individuals. Here we use an adaptive dynamic model to assess how the potential for evolutionary rescue is affected by intra- and interspecific competition. Intraspecific competition (negative density-dependence) lowers abundance, which decreases the supply rate of beneficial mutations, hindering evolutionary rescue. On the other hand, interspecific competition can aid evolutionary rescue when it speeds adaptation by increasing the strength of selection. Our results clarify this point and give an additional requirement: competition must increase selection pressure enough to overcome the negative effect of reduced abundance. We therefore expect evolutionary rescue to be most likely in communities which facilitate rapid niche displacement. Our model, which aligns to previous quantitative and population genetic models in the absence of competition, provides a first analysis of when competitors should help or hinder evolutionary rescue. PMID:23209167

  15. Evolutionary Games of Multiplayer Cooperation on Graphs.

    PubMed

    Peña, Jorge; Wu, Bin; Arranz, Jordi; Traulsen, Arne

    2016-08-01

    There has been much interest in studying evolutionary games in structured populations, often modeled as graphs. However, most analytical results so far have only been obtained for two-player or linear games, while the study of more complex multiplayer games has been usually tackled by computer simulations. Here we investigate evolutionary multiplayer games on graphs updated with a Moran death-Birth process. For cycles, we obtain an exact analytical condition for cooperation to be favored by natural selection, given in terms of the payoffs of the game and a set of structure coefficients. For regular graphs of degree three and larger, we estimate this condition using a combination of pair approximation and diffusion approximation. For a large class of cooperation games, our approximations suggest that graph-structured populations are stronger promoters of cooperation than populations lacking spatial structure. Computer simulations validate our analytical approximations for random regular graphs and cycles, but show systematic differences for graphs with many loops such as lattices. In particular, our simulation results show that these kinds of graphs can even lead to more stringent conditions for the evolution of cooperation than well-mixed populations. Overall, we provide evidence suggesting that the complexity arising from many-player interactions and spatial structure can be captured by pair approximation in the case of random graphs, but that it need to be handled with care for graphs with high clustering. PMID:27513946

  16. Religion's evolutionary landscape: counterintuition, commitment, compassion, communion.

    PubMed

    Atran, Scott; Norenzayan, Ara

    2004-12-01

    Religion is not an evolutionary adaptation per se, but a recurring cultural by-product of the complex evolutionary landscape that sets cognitive, emotional, and material conditions for ordinary human interactions. Religion exploits only ordinary cognitive processes to passionately display costly devotion to counterintuitive worlds governed by supernatural agents. The conceptual foundations of religion are intuitively given by task-specific panhuman cognitive domains, including folkmechanics, folkbiology, and folkpsychology. Core religious beliefs minimally violate ordinary notions about how the world is, with all of its inescapable problems, thus enabling people to imagine minimally impossible supernatural worlds that solve existential problems, including death and deception. Here the focus is on folkpsychology and agency. A key feature of the supernatural agent concepts common to all religions is the triggering of an "Innate Releasing Mechanism," or "agency detector," whose proper (naturally selected) domain encompasses animate objects relevant to hominid survival--such as predators, protectors, and prey--but which actually extends to moving dots on computer screens, voices in wind, and faces on clouds. Folkpsychology also crucially involves metarepresentation, which makes deception possible and threatens any social order. However, these same metacognitive capacities provide the hope and promise of open-ended solutions through representations of counterfactual supernatural worlds that cannot be logically or empirically verified or falsified. Because religious beliefs cannot be deductively or inductively validated, validation occurs only by ritually addressing the very emotions motivating religion. Cross-cultural experimental evidence encourages these claims.

  17. Evolutionary Games of Multiplayer Cooperation on Graphs.

    PubMed

    Peña, Jorge; Wu, Bin; Arranz, Jordi; Traulsen, Arne

    2016-08-01

    There has been much interest in studying evolutionary games in structured populations, often modeled as graphs. However, most analytical results so far have only been obtained for two-player or linear games, while the study of more complex multiplayer games has been usually tackled by computer simulations. Here we investigate evolutionary multiplayer games on graphs updated with a Moran death-Birth process. For cycles, we obtain an exact analytical condition for cooperation to be favored by natural selection, given in terms of the payoffs of the game and a set of structure coefficients. For regular graphs of degree three and larger, we estimate this condition using a combination of pair approximation and diffusion approximation. For a large class of cooperation games, our approximations suggest that graph-structured populations are stronger promoters of cooperation than populations lacking spatial structure. Computer simulations validate our analytical approximations for random regular graphs and cycles, but show systematic differences for graphs with many loops such as lattices. In particular, our simulation results show that these kinds of graphs can even lead to more stringent conditions for the evolution of cooperation than well-mixed populations. Overall, we provide evidence suggesting that the complexity arising from many-player interactions and spatial structure can be captured by pair approximation in the case of random graphs, but that it need to be handled with care for graphs with high clustering.

  18. Evolutionary Games of Multiplayer Cooperation on Graphs

    PubMed Central

    Arranz, Jordi; Traulsen, Arne

    2016-01-01

    There has been much interest in studying evolutionary games in structured populations, often modeled as graphs. However, most analytical results so far have only been obtained for two-player or linear games, while the study of more complex multiplayer games has been usually tackled by computer simulations. Here we investigate evolutionary multiplayer games on graphs updated with a Moran death-Birth process. For cycles, we obtain an exact analytical condition for cooperation to be favored by natural selection, given in terms of the payoffs of the game and a set of structure coefficients. For regular graphs of degree three and larger, we estimate this condition using a combination of pair approximation and diffusion approximation. For a large class of cooperation games, our approximations suggest that graph-structured populations are stronger promoters of cooperation than populations lacking spatial structure. Computer simulations validate our analytical approximations for random regular graphs and cycles, but show systematic differences for graphs with many loops such as lattices. In particular, our simulation results show that these kinds of graphs can even lead to more stringent conditions for the evolution of cooperation than well-mixed populations. Overall, we provide evidence suggesting that the complexity arising from many-player interactions and spatial structure can be captured by pair approximation in the case of random graphs, but that it need to be handled with care for graphs with high clustering. PMID:27513946

  19. [Drooling therapy in children with neurological disorders].

    PubMed

    Táboas-Pereira, M Andrea; Paredes-Mercado, Cecilia; Alonso-Curcó, Xènia; Badosa-Pagès, Joaquim; Muchart, Jordi; Póo, Pilar

    2015-07-16

    Introduccion. La sialorrea es la incapacidad para retener la saliva dentro de la boca y su progresion al tracto digestivo, y es un problema frecuente en pacientes pediatricos con patologia neurologica, por lo que se estan utilizando diferentes medidas para su tratamiento. Objetivo. Evaluar la eficacia y seguridad del trihexifenidilo, la escopolamina y la infiltracion de toxina botulinica en el tratamiento del babeo en niños con patologia neurologica. Pacientes y metodos. Es un estudio de tipo abierto y prospectivo. Incluye pacientes atendidos en el servicio de neurologia que presentaban babeo excesivo, con repercusion en su calidad de vida, entre 2009 y 2013. Resultados. En 46 pacientes se indico tratamiento con trihexifenidilo oral, y se obtuvo buena respuesta en 15 (32,6%), tres con efecto transitorio y el resto mantenido. Presentaron efectos secundarios tres pacientes (6,5%). De los 11 pacientes a los que se indicaron parches de escopolamina, se hallo efecto beneficioso en cuatro (36,36%), uno fue retirado por falta de eficacia y seis por efectos secundarios. Veinticinco pacientes fueron infiltrados con toxina botulinica, con disminucion significativa del babeo en 16 (64%) tras la primera infiltracion. No observamos cambios significativos en nueve casos. Solo uno presento efectos secundarios (disfagia leve). Conclusiones. Por no haber una opcion terapeutica totalmente eficaz para los pacientes con sialorrea, recomendamos iniciar el tratamiento con trihexifenidilo; como segunda opcion, los parches de escopolamina, y como tercera opcion, la toxina botulinica. La infiltracion de toxina botulinica en glandulas salivales se muestra como una alternativa eficaz y segura segun nuestra serie.

  20. Effects of Death Education on Conscious and Unconscious Death Anxiety.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Hayslip, Bert, Jr.; And Others

    1994-01-01

    Adults (n=162) varying in extent of participation in didactic or experiential forms of death education versus those who had no such exposure to death and dying-related issues completed measures of conscious and unconscious death fears. Findings suggest that didactic death education was effective in altering death anxiety, although effects were…

  1. [Death experience. Antidote against fear to death].

    PubMed

    Fericgla, Josep M

    2003-12-01

    Fortunately, anthropology has brought to our modern society a higher interest for mankind's cultural dimension and the values which each people employ in order to make sense out of the changes which occur during our lives. It is this cultural dimension which permits men to develop our innate capacities and to become humans. However, in order to achieve this, we need experiences which are codified and interpreted by a values system which each individual has made his/her own. Some of these experiences take place inside cultural mores constructed expressly so that they are useful for one's lifestyle; these are known as rites. A rite, therefore, is an experience which leaves an impression, which implies social and biographical changes, which provides meaning to human beings' universal interests. Nonetheless, since rites usually are organized by diverse religions, it is convenient, as we enter the 21st Century, to speak about Experiences which Activate Structures as means to approach, to come to grasp with, some of the great causes of anxiety in humans: death and insanity. These Experiences which Activate Structures allow us to subjectively experiment, to conquer our fears and to be more conscious of our here and our now. Workshops on the Living Integration of One's Own Death are included in this context as an appropriate forum through which to approach death with knowledge and serenity, inducing changes in our own lifestyle as well and helping us to overcome situations of existential blockage.

  2. Unusual sudden death.

    PubMed Central

    Warren, J. V.

    1985-01-01

    In contrast to usual sudden death seen in the course of coronary artery disease, individuals dying suddenly from other causes form a complex array of situations. In some the causes are readily identifiable. No simple pattern is available to identify the potential candidate, but on review of the many causes some moves by the physician may be helpful. For example, a more complete physical evaluation of young individuals participating in competitive athletics is in order. This is particularly true if the athlete reports an episode of unexplained syncope. This may well be the warning of a propensity towards sudden death under physical and emotional stress. Knowledge of the specific problems in underwater swimming and diving, in high altitude exposure and in various circumstances such as certain weight reduction diets and industrial exposures may lead to control of some types of unusual sudden death. Clearly, more studies are needed to give answers in so called crib death. As the incidence of usual sudden death falls, these unusual forms of sudden death will represent a more important fraction of sudden death in general. PMID:6537674

  3. RNA based evolutionary optimization.

    PubMed

    Schuster, P

    1993-12-01

    The notion of an RNA world has been introduced for a prebiotic scenario that is dominated by RNA molecules and their properties, in particular their capabilities to act as templates for reproduction and as catalysts for several cleavage and ligation reactions of polynucleotides and polypeptides. This notion is used here also for simple experimental assays which are well suited to study evolution in the test tube. In molecular evolution experiments fitness is determined in essence by the molecular structures of RNA molecules. Evidence is presented for adaptation to environment in cell-free media. RNA based molecular evolution experiments have led to interesting spin-offs in biotechnology, commonly called 'applied molecular evolution', which make use of Darwinian trial-and-error strategies in order to synthesize new pharmacological compounds and other advanced materials on a biological basis. Error-propagation in RNA replication leads to formation of mutant spectra called 'quasispecies'. An increase in the error rate broadens the mutant spectrum. There exists a sharply defined threshold beyond which heredity breaks down and evolutionary adaptation becomes impossible. Almost all RNA viruses studied so far operate at conditions close to this error threshold. Quasispecies and error thresholds are important for an understanding of RNA virus evolution, and they may help to develop novel antiviral strategies. Evolution of RNA molecules can be studied and interpreted by considering secondary structures. The notion of sequence space introduces a distance between pairs of RNA sequences which is tantamount to counting the minimal number of point mutations required to convert the sequences into each other. The mean sensitivity of RNA secondary structures to mutation depends strongly on the base pairing alphabet: structures from sequences which contain only one base pair (GC or AU are much less stable against mutation than those derived from the natural (AUGC) sequences

  4. Programmed Cell Death in Unicellular Phytoplankton.

    PubMed

    Bidle, Kay D

    2016-07-11

    Unicellular, planktonic, prokaryotic and eukaryotic photoautotrophs (phytoplankton) have an ancient evolutionary history on Earth during which time they have played key roles in the regulation of marine food webs, biogeochemical cycles, and Earth's climate. Since they represent the basis of aquatic ecosystems, the manner in which phytoplankton die critically determines the flow and fate of photosynthetically fixed organic matter (and associated elements), ultimately constraining nutrient flow. Programmed cell death (PCD) and associated pathway genes, which are triggered by a variety of abiotic (nutrient, light, osmotic) and biotic (virus infection, allelopathy) environmental stresses, have an integral grip on cell fate, and have shaped the ecological success and evolutionary trajectory of diverse phytoplankton lineages. A combination of physiological, biochemical, and genetic techniques in model algal systems has demonstrated a conserved molecular and mechanistic framework of stress surveillance, signaling, and death activation pathways, involving collective and coordinated participation of organelles, redox enzymes, metabolites, and caspase-like proteases. This mechanistic understanding has provided insight into the integration of sensing and transduction of stress signals into cellular responses, and the mechanistic interfaces between PCD, cell stress and virus infection pathways. It has also provided insight into the evolution of PCD in unicellular photoautotrophs, the impact of PCD on the fate of natural phytoplankton assemblages and its role in aquatic biogeochemical cycles. PMID:27404255

  5. Programmed Cell Death in Unicellular Phytoplankton.

    PubMed

    Bidle, Kay D

    2016-07-11

    Unicellular, planktonic, prokaryotic and eukaryotic photoautotrophs (phytoplankton) have an ancient evolutionary history on Earth during which time they have played key roles in the regulation of marine food webs, biogeochemical cycles, and Earth's climate. Since they represent the basis of aquatic ecosystems, the manner in which phytoplankton die critically determines the flow and fate of photosynthetically fixed organic matter (and associated elements), ultimately constraining nutrient flow. Programmed cell death (PCD) and associated pathway genes, which are triggered by a variety of abiotic (nutrient, light, osmotic) and biotic (virus infection, allelopathy) environmental stresses, have an integral grip on cell fate, and have shaped the ecological success and evolutionary trajectory of diverse phytoplankton lineages. A combination of physiological, biochemical, and genetic techniques in model algal systems has demonstrated a conserved molecular and mechanistic framework of stress surveillance, signaling, and death activation pathways, involving collective and coordinated participation of organelles, redox enzymes, metabolites, and caspase-like proteases. This mechanistic understanding has provided insight into the integration of sensing and transduction of stress signals into cellular responses, and the mechanistic interfaces between PCD, cell stress and virus infection pathways. It has also provided insight into the evolution of PCD in unicellular photoautotrophs, the impact of PCD on the fate of natural phytoplankton assemblages and its role in aquatic biogeochemical cycles.

  6. Unnatural sudden infant death

    PubMed Central

    Meadow, R.

    1999-01-01

    AIM—To identify features to help paediatricians differentiate between natural and unnatural infant deaths.
METHOD—Clinical features of 81 children judged by criminal and family courts to have been killed by their parents were studied. Health and social service records, court documents, and records from meetings with parents, relatives, and social workers were studied.
RESULTS—Initially, 42 children had been certified as dying from sudden infant death syndrome (SIDS), and 29 were given another cause of natural death. In 24 families, more than one child died; 58died before the age of 6 months and most died in the afternoon or evening. Seventy per cent had experienced unexplained illnesses; over half were admitted to hospital within the previous month, and 15 had been discharged within 24 hours of death. The mother, father, or both were responsible for death in 43, five, and two families, respectively. Most homes were disadvantaged—no regular income, receiving income support—and mothers smoked. Half the perpetrators had a history of somatising or factitious disorder. Death was usually by smothering and 43% of children had bruises, petechiae, or blood on the face.
CONCLUSIONS—Although certain features are indicative of unnatural infant death, some are also associated with SIDS. Despite the recent reduction in numbers of infants dying suddenly, inadequacies in the assessment of their deaths exist. Until a thorough postmortem examination is combined with evaluation of the history and circumstances of death by an experienced paediatrician, most cases of covert fatal abuse will go undetected. The term SIDS requires revision or abandonment.

 PMID:10325752

  7. Eaten to death

    PubMed Central

    Nelson, Charles; Baehrecke, Eric H.

    2014-01-01

    Macro-autophagy (hereafter referred to as autophagy) delivers cytoplasmic material to the lysosome for degradation, and has been implicated in many cellular processes, including stress, infection, survival, and death. While the regulation and role that autophagy plays in stress, infection, and survival is apparent, the regulation of and role that autophagy has during cell death remains relatively unclear. In this review, we highlight what is known about the role that autophagy can play during physiological cell death, and discuss the implications of better understanding cellular destruction that involves autophagy. PMID:25323556

  8. [Brain death and thanatology].

    PubMed

    Zwierlein, E

    1993-09-01

    New technologies in medicine dramatically open a twilight-zone of ignorance between life and death. The argument shows that the present definition of brain death as the death of a human person is a convention with a specific philosophy behind. You will meet the problem with more accuracy when referring to an ethics of intransparence that allows an individual decision with respect to certain qualified conditions. Only from this starting-point the informed ex ante consent for an organ donation seems to become the only conclusive but at the same time justified decision.

  9. Death writ large.

    PubMed

    Kastenbaum, Robert

    2004-05-01

    Mainstream thanatology has devoted its efforts to improving the understanding, care, and social integration of people who are confronted with life-threatening illness or bereavement. This article suggests that it might now be time to expand the scope and mission to include large-scale death and death that occurs through complex and multi-domain processes. Obstacles to developing a systematic macrothanatology are identified. The 9-11-01 terrorist attacks on America are discussed as an example of mass death with complex correlates and consequences. Other examples are taken from the realms of war, disease, disaster, and extinction.

  10. Evolutionary theory, psychiatry, and psychopharmacology.

    PubMed

    Stein, Dan J

    2006-07-01

    Darwin's seminal publications in the nineteenth century laid the foundation for an evolutionary approach to psychology and psychiatry. Advances in 20th century evolutionary theory facilitated the development of evolutionary psychology and psychiatry as recognized areas of scientific investigation. In this century, advances in understanding the molecular basis of evolution, of the mind, and of psychopathology, offer the possibility of an integrated approach to understanding the proximal (psychobiological) and distal (evolutionary) mechanisms of interest to psychiatry and psychopharmacology. There is, for example, growing interest in the question of whether specific genetic variants mediate psychobiological processes that have evolutionary value in specific contexts, and of the implications of this for understanding the vulnerability to psychopathology and for considering the advantages and limitations of pharmacotherapy. The evolutionary value, and gene-environmental mediation, of early life programming is potentially a particularly rich area of investigation. Although evolutionary approaches to psychology and to medicine face important conceptual and methodological challenges, current work is increasingly sophisticated, and may prove to be an important foundational discipline for clinicians and researchers in psychiatry and psychopharmacology.

  11. Children's Death Concepts and Ethnicity.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Wass, Hannelore; Towry, Betty J.

    1980-01-01

    Relationships between death concepts of Black and White children and their racial status were examined. Lower-middle-class elementary children completed a four-item questionnaire on death. Most children defined death as the end of living and listed physical causes as the explanation of death. In general, children's death concepts were similar.…

  12. Evolutionary stability of mixed strategies on graphs

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Li, Yan; Liu, Xinsheng; Claussen, Jens Christian

    2016-07-01

    Up to the present time, the study of evolutionary dynamics mostly focused on pure strategy games in finite discrete strategy space, either in well-mixed or structured populations. In this paper, we study mixed strategy games in continuous strategy space on graphs of degree k. Each player is arranged on a vertex of the graph. The edges denote the interaction between two individuals. In the limit of weak selection, we first derive the payoff functions of two mixed strategies under three different updating rules, named birth-death, death-birth and imitation. Then we obtain the conditions for a strategy being a continuously stable strategy (CSS), and we also confirm that the equilibrium distribution corresponding to the CSS is neighborhood attracting and strongly uninvadable. Finally, we apply our theory to the prisoner’s dilemma and the snowdrift game to obtain possible CSS. Simulations are performed for the two special games and the results are well consistent with the conclusions we made.

  13. Death and Grief

    MedlinePlus

    ... for Parents for Kids for Teens Teens Home Body Mind Sexual Health Food & Fitness Diseases & Conditions Infections Q& ... a death or loss. Grief can affect our body, mind, emotions, and spirit. People might notice or show ...

  14. Hitler's Death Camps.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Wieser, Paul

    1995-01-01

    Presents a high school lesson on Hitler's death camps and the widespread policy of brutality and oppression against European Jews. Includes student objectives, instructional procedures, and a chart listing the value of used clothing taken from the Jews. (CFR)

  15. Eighth Amendment & Death Penalty.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Shortall, Joseph M.; Merrill, Denise W.

    1987-01-01

    Presents a lesson on capital punishment for juveniles based on three hypothetical cases. The goal of the lesson is to have students understand the complexities of decisions regarding the death penalty for juveniles. (JDH)

  16. Death and Wheatgrass

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Coleman, Jon T.

    2005-01-01

    The death of his father prompts the author and university professor to reflect on the acts of grieving and teaching. He offers a tribute to his deceased father while commenting on the importance of teaching in his life.

  17. Autoerotic deaths: four cases.

    PubMed

    Cooke, C T; Cadden, G A; Margolius, K A

    1994-07-01

    We describe the circumstances and post mortem medical findings of 4 unusual fatalities where death occurred during autoerotic practice. Three cases occurred in young to middle-aged men--hanging, electrocution and inhalation of a zucchini. The manner of death in each was accidental. The fourth case was an elderly man who died of ischemic heart disease, apparently whilst masturbating with a vacuum cleaner and a hair dryer.

  18. Lineage‐specific genomics: Frequent birth and death in the human genome

    PubMed Central

    2016-01-01

    Frequent evolutionary birth and death events have created a large quantity of biologically important, lineage‐specific DNA within mammalian genomes. The birth and death of DNA sequences is so frequent that the total number of these insertions and deletions in the human population remains unknown, although there are differences between these groups, e.g. transposable elements contribute predominantly to sequence insertion. Functional turnover – where the activity of a locus is specific to one lineage, but the underlying DNA remains conserved – can also drive birth and death. However, this does not appear to be a major driver of divergent transcriptional regulation. Both sequence and functional turnover have contributed to the birth and death of thousands of functional promoters in the human and mouse genomes. These findings reveal the pervasive nature of evolutionary birth and death and suggest that lineage‐specific regions may play an important but previously underappreciated role in human biology and disease. PMID:27231054

  19. Funerals against death

    PubMed Central

    Bailey, Tara; Walter, Tony

    2016-01-01

    While anthropological studies in non-Western societies show how funerals protect the community from the threat of death, sociological studies of British funerals have so far focused on meanings for the private family. The article reports on results from a Mass Observation directive – the first British study to focus specifically on the entire funeral congregation – and shows how attendees experience the contemporary life-centred funeral as a symbolic conquest of death. While the eulogy’s accuracy is important, even more so – at least for some – is its authenticity, namely that the speaker has personal knowledge of the deceased. Whereas Davies analyses the power of professionally delivered ritual words against death, our data reveals how admired is the courage exercised by non-professionals in speaking against death, however faltering their words. Further, the very presence of a congregation whose members have known the deceased in diverse ways embodies a configurational eulogy, which we term relationships against death. We thus argue that funerals symbolically conquer death not only through words delivered by ritual specialists, but also through those who knew the deceased congregating and speaking. PMID:27019605

  20. Autophagic cell death exists

    PubMed Central

    Clarke, Peter G.H.; Puyal, Julien

    2012-01-01

    The term autophagic cell death (ACD) initially referred to cell death with greatly enhanced autophagy, but is increasingly used to imply a death-mediating role of autophagy, as shown by a protective effect of autophagy inhibition. In addition, many authors require that autophagic cell death must not involve apoptosis or necrosis. Adopting these new and restrictive criteria, and emphasizing their own failure to protect human osteosarcoma cells by autophagy inhibition, the authors of a recent Editor’s Corner article in this journal argued for the extreme rarity or nonexistence of autophagic cell death. We here maintain that, even with the more stringent recent criteria, autophagic cell death exists in several situations, some of which were ignored by the Editor’s Corner authors. We reject their additional criterion that the autophagy in ACD must be the agent of ultimate cell dismantlement. And we argue that rapidly dividing mammalian cells such as cancer cells are not the most likely situation for finding pure ACD. PMID:22652592

  1. Classification of cell death

    PubMed Central

    Kroemer, G; Galluzzi, L; Vandenabeele, P; Abrams, J; Alnemri, ES; Baehrecke, EH; Blagosklonny, MV; El-Deiry, WS; Golstein, P; Green, DR; Hengartner, M; Knight, RA; Kumar, S; Lipton, SA; Malorni, W; Nuñez, G; Peter, ME; Tschopp, J; Yuan, J; Piacentini, M; Zhivotovsky, B; Melino, G

    2009-01-01

    Different types of cell death are often defined by morphological criteria, without a clear reference to precise biochemical mechanisms. The Nomenclature Committee on Cell Death (NCCD) proposes unified criteria for the definition of cell death and of its different morphologies, while formulating several caveats against the misuse of words and concepts that slow down progress in the area of cell death research. Authors, reviewers and editors of scientific periodicals are invited to abandon expressions like ‘percentage apoptosis’ and to replace them with more accurate descriptions of the biochemical and cellular parameters that are actually measured. Moreover, at the present stage, it should be accepted that caspase-independent mechanisms can cooperate with (or substitute for) caspases in the execution of lethal signaling pathways and that ‘autophagic cell death’ is a type of cell death occurring together with (but not necessarily by) autophagic vacuolization. This study details the 2009 recommendations of the NCCD on the use of cell death-related terminology including ‘entosis’, ‘mitotic catastrophe’, ‘necrosis’, ‘necroptosis’ and ‘pyroptosis’. PMID:18846107

  2. Death obsession in Palestinians.

    PubMed

    Abdel-Khalek, Ahmed M; Al-Arja, Nahida S; Abdalla, Taysir

    2006-04-01

    The authors explored death obsession level and correlates among a sample (N = 601) of Palestinians living in the city of Beit Jala, the village of Al-Khader, and the Aida refugee camp in the Bethlehem area. They live in war conditions; the houses of half of them have been demolished. The Death Obsession Scale (DOS) was administered. Its alpha reliability was .92, denoting high internal consistency. Among women, it yielded 1 factor, (General Death Obsession), whereas among men it yielded 3 factors: Death Rumination, Death Dominance, and Death Idea Repetition. Palestinian men and women attained significantly lower DOS mean scores than participants from 4 Arab countries: Egypt, Kuwait, Syria, and Lebanon in 7 out of 8 comparisons. However, Palestinian women had significantly higher DOS mean score than their Spanish, American and British counterparts, whereas Palestinian men had significantly higher mean DOS score than Spanish peers. The low DOS scores of Palestinians, in proportion to other Arab samples, may reflect their adaptation to strife and violence.

  3. Evolutionary rescue beyond the models

    PubMed Central

    Gomulkiewicz, Richard; Shaw, Ruth G.

    2013-01-01

    Laboratory model systems and mathematical models have shed considerable light on the fundamental properties and processes of evolutionary rescue. But it remains to determine the extent to which these model-based findings can help biologists predict when evolution will fail or succeed in rescuing natural populations that are facing novel conditions that threaten their persistence. In this article, we present a prospectus for transferring our basic understanding of evolutionary rescue to wild and other non-laboratory populations. Current experimental and theoretical results emphasize how the interplay between inheritance processes and absolute fitness in changed environments drive population dynamics and determine prospects of extinction. We discuss the challenge of inferring these elements of the evolutionary rescue process in field and natural settings. Addressing this challenge will contribute to a more comprehensive understanding of population persistence that combines processes of evolutionary rescue with developmental and ecological mechanisms. PMID:23209173

  4. Army ants: an evolutionary bestseller?

    PubMed

    Berghoff, Stefanie M

    2003-09-01

    Army ants are characterized by a complex combination of behavioral and morphological traits. Molecular data now indicate that army ant behavior has a unique evolutionary origin and has been conserved for over more than 100 million years.

  5. Evolutionary constraints or opportunities?

    PubMed Central

    Sharov, Alexei A.

    2014-01-01

    Natural selection is traditionally viewed as a leading factor of evolution, whereas variation is assumed to be random and non-directional. Any order in variation is attributed to epigenetic or developmental constraints that can hinder the action of natural selection. In contrast I consider the positive role of epigenetic mechanisms in evolution because they provide organisms with opportunities for rapid adaptive change. Because the term “constraint” has negative connotations, I use the term “regulated variation” to emphasize the adaptive nature of phenotypic variation, which helps populations and species to survive and evolve in changing environments. The capacity to produce regulated variation is a phenotypic property, which is not described in the genome. Instead, the genome acts as a switchboard, where mostly random mutations switch “on” or “off” preexisting functional capacities of organism components. Thus, there are two channels of heredity: informational (genomic) and structure-functional (phenotypic). Functional capacities of organisms most likely emerged in a chain of modifications and combinations of more simple ancestral functions. The role of DNA has been to keep records of these changes (without describing the result) so that they can be reproduced in the following generations. Evolutionary opportunities include adjustments of individual functions, multitasking, connection between various components of an organism, and interaction between organisms. The adaptive nature of regulated variation can be explained by the differential success of lineages in macro-evolution. Lineages with more advantageous patterns of regulated variation are likely to produce more species and secure more resources (i.e., long-term lineage selection). PMID:24769155

  6. Evolutionary constraints or opportunities?

    PubMed

    Sharov, Alexei A

    2014-04-22

    Natural selection is traditionally viewed as a leading factor of evolution, whereas variation is assumed to be random and non-directional. Any order in variation is attributed to epigenetic or developmental constraints that can hinder the action of natural selection. In contrast I consider the positive role of epigenetic mechanisms in evolution because they provide organisms with opportunities for rapid adaptive change. Because the term "constraint" has negative connotations, I use the term "regulated variation" to emphasize the adaptive nature of phenotypic variation, which helps populations and species to survive and evolve in changing environments. The capacity to produce regulated variation is a phenotypic property, which is not described in the genome. Instead, the genome acts as a switchboard, where mostly random mutations switch "on" or "off" preexisting functional capacities of organism components. Thus, there are two channels of heredity: informational (genomic) and structure-functional (phenotypic). Functional capacities of organisms most likely emerged in a chain of modifications and combinations of more simple ancestral functions. The role of DNA has been to keep records of these changes (without describing the result) so that they can be reproduced in the following generations. Evolutionary opportunities include adjustments of individual functions, multitasking, connection between various components of an organism, and interaction between organisms. The adaptive nature of regulated variation can be explained by the differential success of lineages in macro-evolution. Lineages with more advantageous patterns of regulated variation are likely to produce more species and secure more resources (i.e., long-term lineage selection).

  7. Evolutionary constraints or opportunities?

    PubMed

    Sharov, Alexei A

    2014-09-01

    Natural selection is traditionally viewed as a leading factor of evolution, whereas variation is assumed to be random and non-directional. Any order in variation is attributed to epigenetic or developmental constraints that can hinder the action of natural selection. In contrast I consider the positive role of epigenetic mechanisms in evolution because they provide organisms with opportunities for rapid adaptive change. Because the term "constraint" has negative connotations, I use the term "regulated variation" to emphasize the adaptive nature of phenotypic variation, which helps populations and species to survive and evolve in changing environments. The capacity to produce regulated variation is a phenotypic property, which is not described in the genome. Instead, the genome acts as a switchboard, where mostly random mutations switch "on" or "off" preexisting functional capacities of organism components. Thus, there are two channels of heredity: informational (genomic) and structure-functional (phenotypic). Functional capacities of organisms most likely emerged in a chain of modifications and combinations of more simple ancestral functions. The role of DNA has been to keep records of these changes (without describing the result) so that they can be reproduced in the following generations. Evolutionary opportunities include adjustments of individual functions, multitasking, connection between various components of an organism, and interaction between organisms. The adaptive nature of regulated variation can be explained by the differential success of lineages in macro-evolution. Lineages with more advantageous patterns of regulated variation are likely to produce more species and secure more resources (i.e., long-term lineage selection).

  8. Molluscan Evolutionary Genomics

    SciTech Connect

    Simison, W. Brian; Boore, Jeffrey L.

    2005-12-01

    In the last 20 years there have been dramatic advances in techniques of high-throughput DNA sequencing, most recently accelerated by the Human Genome Project, a program that has determined the three billion base pair code on which we are based. Now this tremendous capability is being directed at other genome targets that are being sampled across the broad range of life. This opens up opportunities as never before for evolutionary and organismal biologists to address questions of both processes and patterns of organismal change. We stand at the dawn of a new 'modern synthesis' period, paralleling that of the early 20th century when the fledgling field of genetics first identified the underlying basis for Darwin's theory. We must now unite the efforts of systematists, paleontologists, mathematicians, computer programmers, molecular biologists, developmental biologists, and others in the pursuit of discovering what genomics can teach us about the diversity of life. Genome-level sampling for mollusks to date has mostly been limited to mitochondrial genomes and it is likely that these will continue to provide the best targets for broad phylogenetic sampling in the near future. However, we are just beginning to see an inroad into complete nuclear genome sequencing, with several mollusks and other eutrochozoans having been selected for work about to begin. Here, we provide an overview of the state of molluscan mitochondrial genomics, highlight a few of the discoveries from this research, outline the promise of broadening this dataset, describe upcoming projects to sequence whole mollusk nuclear genomes, and challenge the community to prepare for making the best use of these data.

  9. Evolutionary status of Be stars

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zorec, J.; Frémat, Y.; Cidale, L.

    2004-12-01

    Fundamental parameters of nearly 50 field Be stars have been determined. Correcting these parameters from gravity darkening effects induced the fast rotation, we deduced the evolutionary phase of the studied stars. We show that the evolutionary phase at which appear the Be phenomenon is mass dependent: the smaller the stellar mass the elder the phase in the main sequence at which the Be phenomenon seem to appear.

  10. Xylem cell death: emerging understanding of regulation and function.

    PubMed

    Bollhöner, Benjamin; Prestele, Jakob; Tuominen, Hannele

    2012-02-01

    Evolutionary, as well as genetic, evidence suggests that vascular development evolved originally as a cell death programme that allowed enhanced movement of water in the extinct protracheophytes, and that secondary wall formation in the water-conducting cells evolved afterwards, providing mechanical support for effective long-distance transport of water. The extant vascular plants possess a common regulatory network to coordinate the different phases of xylem maturation, including secondary wall formation, cell death, and finally autolysis of the cell contents, by the action of recently identified NAC domain transcription factors. Consequently, xylem cell death is an inseparable part of the xylem maturation programme, making it difficult to uncouple cell death mechanistically from secondary wall formation, and thus identify the key factors specifically involved in regulation of cell death. Current knowledge suggests that the necessary components for xylem cell death are produced early during xylem differentiation, and cell death is prevented through the action of inhibitors and storage of hydrolytic enzymes in inactive forms in compartments such as the vacuole. Bursting of the central vacuole triggers autolytic hydrolysis of the cell contents, which ultimately leads to cell death. This cascade of events varies between the different xylem cell types. The water-transporting tracheary elements rely on a rapid cell death programme, with hydrolysis of cell contents taking place for the most part, if not entirely, after vacuolar bursting, while the xylem fibres disintegrate cellular contents at a slower pace, well before cell death. This review includes a detailed description of cell morphology, function of plant growth regulators, such as ethylene and thermospermine, and the action of hydrolytic nucleases and proteases during cell death of the different xylem cell types.

  11. [Deaths in hotels].

    PubMed

    Risse, Manfred; Weilbächer, Nadine; Birngruber, Christoph; Verhoff, Marcel A

    2010-01-01

    There are no verified statistics about deaths occurring in hotels, and only a few cases have been described in the literature. A recent case induced us to conduct a systematic search for deaths in hotels in the autopsy reports of the Institute of Legal Medicine in Giessen for the period from 1968 to 2009. This search yielded 22 evaluable cases in which persons had been found dead or had died in hotels. Data evaluated in the study were sex and age of the deceased, reason for the stay in the hotel and cause of death. Among the deaths, 18 were males and 4 females and the average age was 41 and 40 years respectively. 6 of the male guests had died from a natural and 10 from a non-natural cause. In the remaining two cases, the cause of death could not be determined, but as there was no evidence that another party had been involved, the cases were not further investigated. Of the 4 female guests, 3 had died of a natural cause; in one case, the cause of death remained unclear even after morphological and toxicological investigations. Surprisingly, a third of the men were found to be temporarily living in hotels due to social circumstances. This was not true for any of the women. Our retrospective analysis is based on a comparatively small number of deaths in what were mostly hotels in small to medium-sized towns. Interestingly, the gender ratio of 18:4 for deceased men and women was significantly higher than the usual gender ratio of 2:1 found for forensic autopsies. To be able to draw further conclusions, a greater number of cases would have to be analysed, for example by recruiting additional case files from other institutes of legal medicine. This would also open up the option of investigating possible regional variations.

  12. Marriage: an evolutionary perspective.

    PubMed

    Weisfeld, Glenn E; Weisfeld, Carol C

    2002-12-01

    Marriage is universal, and pair bonding is found in other species too with highly dependent young. So marriage functions as a reproductive social arrangement that traditionally involved the extended family. The sexes are not identical in their biological contributions to children's survival, so they seek somewhat different attributes in a mate. Men seek a young, attractive, sexually faithful bride. Women seek a man who is older, taller, and (as in many other species) socially dominant. Both sexes prefer a kind, healthy, attractive, similar mate who is emotionally attached to them. A spouse who fails to maintain sufficiently high mate value is vulnerable to divorce. Infertility and sexual dissatisfaction predict divorce, as does death of a child, but the more children, the stabler the marriage. Cross-cultural data suggest that cruel or subdominant men (e.g., poor providers) and unfaithful women are prone to divorce. Marriages in which the wife dominates the husband in economic contributions, nonverbal behavior, and decision making tend to be less satisfying. In societies in which wives are economically independent of husbands, divorce rates are high. As women's economic power has risen with industrialization, divorce rates have climbed. Economic and fitness considerations also help explain cultural differences in polygyny, age at marriage, arranged marriage, concern with the bride's sexual chastity, and marriage ceremonies. Other factors also affect marital dynamics, such as state subsidies to families, the sex ratio, and influence of the couple's parents.

  13. Toward a theory of evolutionary computation.

    PubMed

    Eberbach, Eugene

    2005-10-01

    We outline a theory of evolutionary computation using a formal model of evolutionary computation--the Evolutionary Turing Machine--which is introduced as the extension of the Turing Machine model. Evolutionary Turing Machines provide a better and a more complete model for evolutionary computing than conventional Turing Machines, algorithms, and Markov chains. The convergence and convergence rate are defined and investigated in terms of this new model. The sufficient conditions needed for the completeness and optimality of evolutionary search are investigated. In particular, the notion of the total optimality as an instance of the multiobjective optimization of the Universal Evolutionary Turing Machine is introduced. This provides an automatic way to deal with the intractability of evolutionary search by optimizing the quality of solutions and search costs simultaneously. Based on a new model a very flexible classification of optimization problem hardness for the evolutionary techniques is proposed. The expressiveness of evolutionary computation is investigated. We show that the problem of the best evolutionary algorithm is undecidable independently of whether the fitness function is time dependent or fixed. It is demonstrated that the evolutionary computation paradigm is more expressive than Turing Machines, and thus the conventional computer science based on them. We show that an Evolutionary Turing Machine is able to solve nonalgorithmically the halting problem of the Universal Turing Machine and, asymptotically, the best evolutionary algorithm problem. In other words, the best evolutionary algorithm does not exist, but it can be potentially indefinitely approximated using evolutionary techniques.

  14. Programed Death is Favored by Natural Selection in Spatial Systems.

    PubMed

    Werfel, Justin; Ingber, Donald E; Bar-Yam, Yaneer

    2015-06-12

    Standard evolutionary theories of aging and mortality, implicitly based on mean-field assumptions, hold that programed mortality is untenable, as it opposes direct individual benefit. We show that in spatial models with local reproduction, programed deaths instead robustly result in long-term benefit to a lineage, by reducing local environmental resource depletion via spatiotemporal patterns causing feedback over many generations. Results are robust to model variations, implying that direct selection for shorter life span may be quite widespread in nature.

  15. Adolescent Russian roulette deaths.

    PubMed

    Collins, Kim A

    2010-03-01

    Adolescence, between the ages of 10 and 19 years, is a unique period both physically and emotionally. During this time of life, individuals are known to experiment and engage in risky behavior, sometimes with unforeseen morbidity and mortality. We also see suicide emerge as a manner of death in this age group. The most common method is gunshot wound and sometimes in the form of Russian roulette. Few studies have looked at deaths by Russian roulette, the victims, and scenarios. In particular, no study examines the adolescent victim of Russian roulette. To better understand and classify this entity, adolescent Russian roulette autopsy cases over a 20-year period were examined looking at the victims, scenarios, autopsy findings, cause and manner of death, and the weapons. All victims were males, ages 13 to 19 years, with a Black-to-White ratio of 1:1. No victim had a previous psychiatric history. Toxicology was positive for alcohol and/or marijuana in 50% of the victims. Friends were present when the victim shot himself which occurred in the home the majority of the time. In all but 1 case, premeditation of the game was involved as the victim provided the weapon for the roulette. The cause of death was gunshot wound to the head (6 to the right side, 1 to the mouth, 1 to the forehead), and the manner of death was suicide in 6 cases and accident in 2 cases. A review of the literature discusses the adolescent victim, suicide, and Russian roulette.

  16. Perspectives on Death: An Experiential Course on Death Education.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Stefan, Edwin S.

    1978-01-01

    Describes and evaluates a college psychology course on death education (thanatology). Course objectives were to help students become aware of the feelings involved in facing death, encourage discussion on the subject of death, motivate students to change their attitudes about death, and encourage practical planning for funeral arrangements.…

  17. Death Threat and Death Concerns in the College Student.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Tobacyk, Jerome; Eckstein, Daniel

    1980-01-01

    Thanatology students reported significantly lesser death threat and significantly greater death concerns. Trait anxiety was found to be a significant predictor of change in death threat in the Thanatology Group, with lesser anxiety associated with greater decline in death threat. (Author)

  18. The Impact of Death Education on Fear of Death and Death Anxiety Among Human Services Students.

    PubMed

    McClatchey, Irene Searles; King, Steve

    2015-01-01

    Human services professionals will undoubtedly work with the dying and bereaved populations at one time or other. Yet, they are poorly prepared to do so since death education, that is, lessons about the human and emotional aspects of death, its implications, and subsequent bereavement issues, is often not part of their curriculum. This nonequivalent comparison group study (N = 86) examined death fear and death anxiety among human services students before and after receiving death education using the Multidimensional Fear of Death Scale. The results showed a statistically significant decrease in death anxiety among the group of students who participated in death education compared to those who did not.

  19. [Sexuality and death].

    PubMed

    Sapetti, Adrián

    2006-01-01

    It is intented to show two apparently antithetic poles: Sexuality and Death, in fact interpenetrate themselves, disguising the fear of death, or the desire to die, Eros' world. Different expressions of culture are analyzed, especially the one known as The Profane Time, the time for work, which is characterized by the submission to interdicts (prohibitions) and, on the other hand, the Time for Joy or The Sacred Time, characterized by the transgression of such prohibitions. Its relationship with the interdicts'violations in the sexual as well as in the death arena is analyzed in order to connect the human being's fear in the presence of the unrestraint, the overflow and the abandonment of the time established for work that would imply free sexuality. The latter is connected with some conclusions that could be considered useful in the field of Sexual Therapies, with a certain critical look at the mechanist settlement applied to those treatments.

  20. [Sudden infant death syndrome].

    PubMed

    Espinosa Morett, A; Shkurovich, M; Carlos Ugartechea, J; Mallet Arelano, A; Salmón Rodríguez, L E

    1976-01-01

    This report is based on a review of the present situation of the sudden infant death syndrome through the presentation of four cases studied at the Unidad de Pediatría, Hospital General de México, S.S.A. All cases were in apparent good health before death. All babies were less than ten months of age. In three cases, necropsy was not performed, and the other one did not show significant abnormalities at the post-mortem examination. A complete review of the literature was made including: historical, epidemiological, genetic, clinical and pathological aspects. Special emphasis is made on the pathophysiology of the syndrome during MOR phase of sleep and muscular hypertrophy of the lungs arteriolae suggesting chronic hypoxia which are the most relevant theories in the sudden infant death syndrome. Psychological aspects and the family management by the physician and detection of possible future victims of the syndrome are finally discussed. PMID:973858

  1. Cocaine-related deaths.

    PubMed

    Lora-Tamayo, C; Tena, T; Rodriguez, A

    1994-07-15

    Cocaine availability has been increasing in Spain in the past few years. A review of all the toxicological analyses carried out at the Madrid Department of the Instituto Nacional de Toxicología, with subjects who had died of drugs from 1990 to 1992, found 533 persons who had cocaine in their blood and/or tissues; 450 (84%) deaths involved cocaine and heroin together whereas 83 (16%) deaths involved cocaine with an absence of heroin. This paper reports the circumstances, cocaine and benzoylecgonine concentrations in the blood and other toxicological findings for the two major groups of deaths where cocaine was found with an absence of heroin, i.e., possible overdose cases (35 cases) and traffic accidents (23 cases).

  2. Infant deaths in slings.

    PubMed

    Madre, Chrystèle; Rambaud, Caroline; Avran, David; Michot, Charlotte; Sachs, Philippe; Dauger, Stéphane

    2014-12-01

    Although the incidence of sudden unexpected death in infancy (SUDI) decreased markedly after campaigns to promote supine positioning during sleeping, it has remained unchanged over the last decade. Epidemiological data suggest a role for new causes such as suffocation, asphyxia, and entrapment. Health authorities in several countries have issued warnings about slings used to carry infants. However, few reports of infant deaths in slings have been published in medical journals. Our paediatric intensive care unit has admitted two infants who experienced cardiorespiratory arrest while carried in a sling. Diagnostic investigations including a post-mortem examination established asphyxia as the mechanism of death. In conclusion, baby slings may carry a risk of SUDI, either by compression of the baby into a forward-flexed position or by direct suffocation. European recommendations for the cautious use of baby slings should be disseminated to families and professionals involved in caring for infants, as done recently in Australia, Canada, and the USA. PMID:24343674

  3. Death on Denali

    PubMed Central

    Wilson, Rodman; Mills, William J.; Rogers, Donald R.; Propst, Michael T.

    1978-01-01

    Between 1903 and 1975 about 1 percent of climbers on Mount McKinley (Denali) and Mount Foraker in Alaska died. In 1976 a total of ten (1.7 percent) of 587 mountaineers died, but this rate of death was not significantly higher than previously. Nineteen percent of climbers in 1976 suffered major or minor injuries, illness or death. Acute mountain sickness (AMS), frostbite and fractures were common. Thirty-three rescues or retrievals of bodies were mounted at a cost of more than $82,000. Inexperience (particularly with arctic mountaineering), poor leadership, faulty equipment and undue reliance on rescue by helicopter contributed to the alarming incidence of accident, illness and death on big peaks in Mount McKinley National Park in 1976. PMID:664648

  4. [Near death experiences].

    PubMed

    Rubia Vila, Francisco José

    2012-01-01

    Near Death Experiences are those accounted by people who after being clinically dead return to life spontaneously or after reanimation. These experiences have been used traditionally to support the belief in the existence of the soul and of life after death. However, today neuroscience tries to explain these experiences from the scientific point of view, i.e. explaining them based on their brain substrates. Their resemblance to mystic experiences and to altered states of consciousness seems to indicate that they may be produced by hyperactivity of limbic structures caused by anoxia or hypercapnia.

  5. [Near death experiences].

    PubMed

    Rubia Vila, Francisco José

    2012-01-01

    Near Death Experiences are those accounted by people who after being clinically dead return to life spontaneously or after reanimation. These experiences have been used traditionally to support the belief in the existence of the soul and of life after death. However, today neuroscience tries to explain these experiences from the scientific point of view, i.e. explaining them based on their brain substrates. Their resemblance to mystic experiences and to altered states of consciousness seems to indicate that they may be produced by hyperactivity of limbic structures caused by anoxia or hypercapnia. PMID:24294729

  6. [The death of Cleopatra].

    PubMed

    Guillemain, Bernard

    2009-01-01

    The image of a queen bitten by a snake is controversial and the facts, such as the swiftness of her death and her servants, and scientific experiments are in favour of a deadly poisoning. The author reminds that in the ancient texts the snake had sacred virtues and it was a symbolic image to embellish the suicide of the one who was sentenced to death by the Romans. Octaves set up the myth of a fatal bite which became an iconographic image for the cinema.

  7. Teaching about the Death Penalty.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Ryan, John Paul; Eden, John Michael

    1998-01-01

    Examines the reasons for the death penalty, the reasons why the death penalty attracts so much attention, whether the death penalty is applied consistently, and the evidence that the application of the death penalty may be racially biased. Provides an accompanying article on "Teaching Ideas" by Ronald A. Banaszak. (CMK)

  8. Evolutionary inevitability of sexual antagonism.

    PubMed

    Connallon, Tim; Clark, Andrew G

    2014-02-01

    Sexual antagonism, whereby mutations are favourable in one sex and disfavourable in the other, is common in natural populations, yet the root causes of sexual antagonism are rarely considered in evolutionary theories of adaptation. Here, we explore the evolutionary consequences of sex-differential selection and genotype-by-sex interactions for adaptation in species with separate sexes. We show that sexual antagonism emerges naturally from sex differences in the direction of selection on phenotypes expressed by both sexes or from sex-by-genotype interactions affecting the expression of such phenotypes. Moreover, modest sex differences in selection or genotype-by-sex effects profoundly influence the long-term evolutionary trajectories of populations with separate sexes, as these conditions trigger the evolution of strong sexual antagonism as a by-product of adaptively driven evolutionary change. The theory demonstrates that sexual antagonism is an inescapable by-product of adaptation in species with separate sexes, whether or not selection favours evolutionary divergence between males and females.

  9. Evolutionary genetics of maternal effects

    PubMed Central

    Wolf, Jason B.; Wade, Michael J.

    2016-01-01

    Maternal genetic effects (MGEs), where genes expressed by mothers affect the phenotype of their offspring, are important sources of phenotypic diversity in a myriad of organisms. We use a single‐locus model to examine how MGEs contribute patterns of heritable and nonheritable variation and influence evolutionary dynamics in randomly mating and inbreeding populations. We elucidate the influence of MGEs by examining the offspring genotype‐phenotype relationship, which determines how MGEs affect evolutionary dynamics in response to selection on offspring phenotypes. This approach reveals important results that are not apparent from classic quantitative genetic treatments of MGEs. We show that additive and dominance MGEs make different contributions to evolutionary dynamics and patterns of variation, which are differentially affected by inbreeding. Dominance MGEs make the offspring genotype‐phenotype relationship frequency dependent, resulting in the appearance of negative frequency‐dependent selection, while additive MGEs contribute a component of parent‐of‐origin dependent variation. Inbreeding amplifies the contribution of MGEs to the additive genetic variance and, therefore enhances their evolutionary response. Considering evolutionary dynamics of allele frequency change on an adaptive landscape, we show that this landscape differs from the mean fitness surface, and therefore, under some condition, fitness peaks can exist but not be “available” to the evolving population. PMID:26969266

  10. The major synthetic evolutionary transitions.

    PubMed

    Solé, Ricard

    2016-08-19

    Evolution is marked by well-defined events involving profound innovations that are known as 'major evolutionary transitions'. They involve the integration of autonomous elements into a new, higher-level organization whereby the former isolated units interact in novel ways, losing their original autonomy. All major transitions, which include the origin of life, cells, multicellular systems, societies or language (among other examples), took place millions of years ago. Are these transitions unique, rare events? Have they instead universal traits that make them almost inevitable when the right pieces are in place? Are there general laws of evolutionary innovation? In order to approach this problem under a novel perspective, we argue that a parallel class of evolutionary transitions can be explored involving the use of artificial evolutionary experiments where alternative paths to innovation can be explored. These 'synthetic' transitions include, for example, the artificial evolution of multicellular systems or the emergence of language in evolved communicating robots. These alternative scenarios could help us to understand the underlying laws that predate the rise of major innovations and the possibility for general laws of evolved complexity. Several key examples and theoretical approaches are summarized and future challenges are outlined.This article is part of the themed issue 'The major synthetic evolutionary transitions'. PMID:27431528

  11. The major synthetic evolutionary transitions.

    PubMed

    Solé, Ricard

    2016-08-19

    Evolution is marked by well-defined events involving profound innovations that are known as 'major evolutionary transitions'. They involve the integration of autonomous elements into a new, higher-level organization whereby the former isolated units interact in novel ways, losing their original autonomy. All major transitions, which include the origin of life, cells, multicellular systems, societies or language (among other examples), took place millions of years ago. Are these transitions unique, rare events? Have they instead universal traits that make them almost inevitable when the right pieces are in place? Are there general laws of evolutionary innovation? In order to approach this problem under a novel perspective, we argue that a parallel class of evolutionary transitions can be explored involving the use of artificial evolutionary experiments where alternative paths to innovation can be explored. These 'synthetic' transitions include, for example, the artificial evolution of multicellular systems or the emergence of language in evolved communicating robots. These alternative scenarios could help us to understand the underlying laws that predate the rise of major innovations and the possibility for general laws of evolved complexity. Several key examples and theoretical approaches are summarized and future challenges are outlined.This article is part of the themed issue 'The major synthetic evolutionary transitions'.

  12. Environmental changes bridge evolutionary valleys

    PubMed Central

    Steinberg, Barrett; Ostermeier, Marc

    2016-01-01

    In the basic fitness landscape metaphor for molecular evolution, evolutionary pathways are presumed to follow uphill steps of increasing fitness. How evolution can cross fitness valleys is an open question. One possibility is that environmental changes alter the fitness landscape such that low-fitness sequences reside on a hill in alternate environments. We experimentally test this hypothesis on the antibiotic resistance gene TEM-15 β-lactamase by comparing four evolutionary strategies shaped by environmental changes. The strategy that included initial steps of selecting for low antibiotic resistance (negative selection) produced superior alleles compared with the other three strategies. We comprehensively examined possible evolutionary pathways leading to one such high-fitness allele and found that an initially deleterious mutation is key to the allele’s evolutionary history. This mutation is an initial gateway to an otherwise relatively inaccessible area of sequence space and participates in higher-order, positive epistasis with a number of neutral to slightly beneficial mutations. The ability of negative selection and environmental changes to provide access to novel fitness peaks has important implications for natural evolutionary mechanisms and applied directed evolution. PMID:26844293

  13. Evolutionary foundations for cancer biology

    PubMed Central

    Aktipis, C Athena; Nesse, Randolph M

    2013-01-01

    New applications of evolutionary biology are transforming our understanding of cancer. The articles in this special issue provide many specific examples, such as microorganisms inducing cancers, the significance of within-tumor heterogeneity, and the possibility that lower dose chemotherapy may sometimes promote longer survival. Underlying these specific advances is a large-scale transformation, as cancer research incorporates evolutionary methods into its toolkit, and asks new evolutionary questions about why we are vulnerable to cancer. Evolution explains why cancer exists at all, how neoplasms grow, why cancer is remarkably rare, and why it occurs despite powerful cancer suppression mechanisms. Cancer exists because of somatic selection; mutations in somatic cells result in some dividing faster than others, in some cases generating neoplasms. Neoplasms grow, or do not, in complex cellular ecosystems. Cancer is relatively rare because of natural selection; our genomes were derived disproportionally from individuals with effective mechanisms for suppressing cancer. Cancer occurs nonetheless for the same six evolutionary reasons that explain why we remain vulnerable to other diseases. These four principles—cancers evolve by somatic selection, neoplasms grow in complex ecosystems, natural selection has shaped powerful cancer defenses, and the limitations of those defenses have evolutionary explanations—provide a foundation for understanding, preventing, and treating cancer. PMID:23396885

  14. The major synthetic evolutionary transitions

    PubMed Central

    Solé, Ricard

    2016-01-01

    Evolution is marked by well-defined events involving profound innovations that are known as ‘major evolutionary transitions'. They involve the integration of autonomous elements into a new, higher-level organization whereby the former isolated units interact in novel ways, losing their original autonomy. All major transitions, which include the origin of life, cells, multicellular systems, societies or language (among other examples), took place millions of years ago. Are these transitions unique, rare events? Have they instead universal traits that make them almost inevitable when the right pieces are in place? Are there general laws of evolutionary innovation? In order to approach this problem under a novel perspective, we argue that a parallel class of evolutionary transitions can be explored involving the use of artificial evolutionary experiments where alternative paths to innovation can be explored. These ‘synthetic’ transitions include, for example, the artificial evolution of multicellular systems or the emergence of language in evolved communicating robots. These alternative scenarios could help us to understand the underlying laws that predate the rise of major innovations and the possibility for general laws of evolved complexity. Several key examples and theoretical approaches are summarized and future challenges are outlined. This article is part of the themed issue ‘The major synthetic evolutionary transitions’. PMID:27431528

  15. Structural symmetry in evolutionary games

    PubMed Central

    McAvoy, Alex; Hauert, Christoph

    2015-01-01

    In evolutionary game theory, an important measure of a mutant trait (strategy) is its ability to invade and take over an otherwise-monomorphic population. Typically, one quantifies the success of a mutant strategy via the probability that a randomly occurring mutant will fixate in the population. However, in a structured population, this fixation probability may depend on where the mutant arises. Moreover, the fixation probability is just one quantity by which one can measure the success of a mutant; fixation time, for instance, is another. We define a notion of homogeneity for evolutionary games that captures what it means for two single-mutant states, i.e. two configurations of a single mutant in an otherwise-monomorphic population, to be ‘evolutionarily equivalent’ in the sense that all measures of evolutionary success are the same for both configurations. Using asymmetric games, we argue that the term ‘homogeneous’ should apply to the evolutionary process as a whole rather than to just the population structure. For evolutionary matrix games in graph-structured populations, we give precise conditions under which the resulting process is homogeneous. Finally, we show that asymmetric matrix games can be reduced to symmetric games if the population structure possesses a sufficient degree of symmetry. PMID:26423436

  16. Evolutionary genomics of environmental pollution.

    PubMed

    Whitehead, Andrew

    2014-01-01

    Chemical toxins have been a persistent source of evolutionary challenges throughout the history of life, and deep within the genomic storehouse of evolutionary history lay ancient adaptations to diverse chemical poisons. However, the rate of change of contemporary environments mediated by human-introduced pollutants is rapidly screening this storehouse and severely testing the adaptive potential of many species. In this chapter, we briefly review the deep history of evolutionary adaptation to environmental toxins, and then proceed to describe the attributes of stressors and populations that may facilitate contemporary adaptation to pollutants introduced by humans. We highlight that phenotypes derived to enable persistence in polluted habitats may be multi-dimensional, requiring global genome-scale tools and approaches to uncover their mechanistic basis, and include examples of recent progress in the field. The modern tools of genomics offer promise for discovering how pollutants interact with genomes on physiological timescales, and also for discovering what genomic attributes of populations may enable resistance to pollutants over evolutionary timescales. Through integration of these sophisticated genomics tools and approaches with an understanding of the deep historical forces that shaped current populations, a more mature understanding of the mechanistic basis of contemporary ecological-evolutionary dynamics should emerge.

  17. Evolutionary genetics of maternal effects.

    PubMed

    Wolf, Jason B; Wade, Michael J

    2016-04-01

    Maternal genetic effects (MGEs), where genes expressed by mothers affect the phenotype of their offspring, are important sources of phenotypic diversity in a myriad of organisms. We use a single-locus model to examine how MGEs contribute patterns of heritable and nonheritable variation and influence evolutionary dynamics in randomly mating and inbreeding populations. We elucidate the influence of MGEs by examining the offspring genotype-phenotype relationship, which determines how MGEs affect evolutionary dynamics in response to selection on offspring phenotypes. This approach reveals important results that are not apparent from classic quantitative genetic treatments of MGEs. We show that additive and dominance MGEs make different contributions to evolutionary dynamics and patterns of variation, which are differentially affected by inbreeding. Dominance MGEs make the offspring genotype-phenotype relationship frequency dependent, resulting in the appearance of negative frequency-dependent selection, while additive MGEs contribute a component of parent-of-origin dependent variation. Inbreeding amplifies the contribution of MGEs to the additive genetic variance and, therefore enhances their evolutionary response. Considering evolutionary dynamics of allele frequency change on an adaptive landscape, we show that this landscape differs from the mean fitness surface, and therefore, under some condition, fitness peaks can exist but not be "available" to the evolving population. PMID:26969266

  18. Lifespan Attitudes toward Death.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Walker, Gail; Maiden, Robert

    To more fully understand how attitudes toward death and dying develop and change across the lifespan, 90 male and female subjects between the ages of 2 and 18 years and 90 male and female subjects between the ages of 18 and 97 were administered questionnaires and interviews about dying. The results revealed that children's attitudes were…

  19. Digital Language Death

    PubMed Central

    Kornai, András

    2013-01-01

    Of the approximately 7,000 languages spoken today, some 2,500 are generally considered endangered. Here we argue that this consensus figure vastly underestimates the danger of digital language death, in that less than 5% of all languages can still ascend to the digital realm. We present evidence of a massive die-off caused by the digital divide. PMID:24167559

  20. Children's Concepts of Death.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Kane, Barbara

    1979-01-01

    A total of 122 middle-class White boys and girls aged 3 through 12 years were interviewed to determine the nature and the development of their concepts of death and the impact of experience on those concepts. (Author/BH)

  1. Death of a Leader.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    McLaughlin, Thomas E.

    1994-01-01

    When Issaquah (Washington) superintendent, after battling a brain tumor, entered the hospital for the last time, school district had to develop a crisis plan to deal with the possible death of the superintendent. A contingency planning team developed a telephone tree for school officials to keep in close contact with teachers and administrators.…

  2. Sudden Infant Death Syndrome.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Barnett, Henry L.; And Others

    There is a growing body of evidence that Sudden Infant Death Syndrome (SIDS) victims are not completely normal and healthy, as was once believed. A variety of new information from several disciplines strongly suggests that the infant who dies suddenly and unexpectedly may do so because of subtle developmental, neurologic, cardiorespiratory, and…

  3. Death Penalty in America.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Clifford, Amie L.

    1997-01-01

    Examines the legal and moral issues, controversies, and unique trial procedures involved with the death penalty. Discusses the 1972 landmark Supreme Court decision that resulted in many states abolishing this punishment, only to reintroduce it later with different provisions. Reviews the controversial case of Sam Sheppard. (MJP)

  4. The Death Penalty.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Crockett, Mark

    1990-01-01

    Provides a lesson plan on the Eighth Amendment to the U.S. Constitution and the imposition of the death penalty. Focuses on the controversy concerning capital punishment and stimulates critical thinking in an analysis and discussion of eight hypothetical situations. Includes suggestions for readings, videotapes, and writing assignments. (NL)

  5. Death in Contemporary America.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Feifel, Herman, Ed.

    1982-01-01

    In five articles, considers the history and nature of death in America. Discusses dilemmas that face the helping professions as a consequence of improving medical capability. Highlights the effects of social change upon the mourning experience. Discusses the hospice movement. (RC)

  6. Psychiatry on death row.

    PubMed

    Hussain, A H; Tozman, S

    1978-03-01

    The authors present the personal experiences of an attending physician in a Death Row in Ceylon (Sri-Lanka). Aspects of the execution scenario are presented and discussed with its implications for the protagonists: the condemned, witnesses, standers-by, authorities and society-at large.

  7. Evolutionary psychology and intelligence research.

    PubMed

    Kanazawa, Satoshi

    2010-01-01

    This article seeks to unify two subfields of psychology that have hitherto stood separately: evolutionary psychology and intelligence research/differential psychology. I suggest that general intelligence may simultaneously be an evolved adaptation and an individual-difference variable. Tooby and Cosmides's (1990a) notion of random quantitative variation on a monomorphic design allows us to incorporate heritable individual differences in evolved adaptations. The Savanna-IQ Interaction Hypothesis, which is one consequence of the integration of evolutionary psychology and intelligence research, can potentially explain why less intelligent individuals enjoy TV more, why liberals are more intelligent than conservatives, and why night owls are more intelligent than morning larks, among many other findings. The general approach proposed here will allow us to integrate evolutionary psychology with any other aspect of differential psychology.

  8. Evolutionary engineering for industrial microbiology.

    PubMed

    Vanee, Niti; Fisher, Adam B; Fong, Stephen S

    2012-01-01

    Superficially, evolutionary engineering is a paradoxical field that balances competing interests. In natural settings, evolution iteratively selects and enriches subpopulations that are best adapted to a particular ecological niche using random processes such as genetic mutation. In engineering desired approaches utilize rational prospective design to address targeted problems. When considering details of evolutionary and engineering processes, more commonality can be found. Engineering relies on detailed knowledge of the problem parameters and design properties in order to predict design outcomes that would be an optimized solution. When detailed knowledge of a system is lacking, engineers often employ algorithmic search strategies to identify empirical solutions. Evolution epitomizes this iterative optimization by continuously diversifying design options from a parental design, and then selecting the progeny designs that represent satisfactory solutions. In this chapter, the technique of applying the natural principles of evolution to engineer microbes for industrial applications is discussed to highlight the challenges and principles of evolutionary engineering.

  9. Theoretical developments in evolutionary computation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Fogel, David B.

    1999-11-01

    Recent developments in the theory of evolutionary computation offer evidence and proof that overturns several conventionally held beliefs. In particular, the no free lunch theorem and other related theorems show that there can be no best evolutionary algorithm, and that no particular variation operator or selection mechanism provides a general advantage over another choice. Furthermore, the fundamental nature of the notion of schema processing is called into question by recent theory that shows that the schema theorem does not hold when schema fitness is stochastic. Moreover, the analysis that underlies schema theory, namely the k- armed bandit analysis, does not generate a sampling plan that yields an optimal allocation of trials, as has been suggested in the literature for almost 25 years. The importance of these new findings is discussed in the context of future progress in the field of evolutionary computation.

  10. Neuronal boost to evolutionary dynamics

    PubMed Central

    de Vladar, Harold P.; Szathmáry, Eörs

    2015-01-01

    Standard evolutionary dynamics is limited by the constraints of the genetic system. A central message of evolutionary neurodynamics is that evolutionary dynamics in the brain can happen in a neuronal niche in real time, despite the fact that neurons do not reproduce. We show that Hebbian learning and structural synaptic plasticity broaden the capacity for informational replication and guided variability provided a neuronally plausible mechanism of replication is in place. The synergy between learning and selection is more efficient than the equivalent search by mutation selection. We also consider asymmetric landscapes and show that the learning weights become correlated with the fitness gradient. That is, the neuronal complexes learn the local properties of the fitness landscape, resulting in the generation of variability directed towards the direction of fitness increase, as if mutations in a genetic pool were drawn such that they would increase reproductive success. Evolution might thus be more efficient within evolved brains than among organisms out in the wild. PMID:26640653

  11. Neuronal boost to evolutionary dynamics.

    PubMed

    de Vladar, Harold P; Szathmáry, Eörs

    2015-12-01

    Standard evolutionary dynamics is limited by the constraints of the genetic system. A central message of evolutionary neurodynamics is that evolutionary dynamics in the brain can happen in a neuronal niche in real time, despite the fact that neurons do not reproduce. We show that Hebbian learning and structural synaptic plasticity broaden the capacity for informational replication and guided variability provided a neuronally plausible mechanism of replication is in place. The synergy between learning and selection is more efficient than the equivalent search by mutation selection. We also consider asymmetric landscapes and show that the learning weights become correlated with the fitness gradient. That is, the neuronal complexes learn the local properties of the fitness landscape, resulting in the generation of variability directed towards the direction of fitness increase, as if mutations in a genetic pool were drawn such that they would increase reproductive success. Evolution might thus be more efficient within evolved brains than among organisms out in the wild.

  12. Evolutionary models of interstellar chemistry

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Prasad, Sheo S.

    1987-01-01

    The goal of evolutionary models of interstellar chemistry is to understand how interstellar clouds came to be the way they are, how they will change with time, and to place them in an evolutionary sequence with other celestial objects such as stars. An improved Mark II version of an earlier model of chemistry in dynamically evolving clouds is presented. The Mark II model suggests that the conventional elemental C/O ratio less than one can explain the observed abundances of CI and the nondetection of O2 in dense clouds. Coupled chemical-dynamical models seem to have the potential to generate many observable discriminators of the evolutionary tracks. This is exciting, because, in general, purely dynamical models do not yield enough verifiable discriminators of the predicted tracks.

  13. Death understanding and fear of death in young children.

    PubMed

    Slaughter, Virginia; Griffiths, Maya

    2007-10-01

    The purpose of this study was to test whether the developmental acquisition of a mature concept of death, that is, understanding death as a biological event, affects young children's fear of death. Ninety children between the ages of 4 and 8 participated in an interview study in which their understanding of death and their fear of death were both assessed. Levels of general anxiety were also measured via parent report. A regression analysis indicated that more mature death understanding was associated with lower levels of death fear, when age and general anxiety were controlled. These data provide some empirical support for the widely held belief that discussing death and dying in biological terms is the best way to alleviate fear of death in young children.

  14. An inquiry into evolutionary inquiry

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Donovan, Samuel S.

    2005-11-01

    While evolution education has received a great deal of attention within the science education research community it still poses difficult teaching and learning challenges. Understanding evolutionary biology has been given high priority in national science education policy because of its role in coordinating our understanding of the life sciences, its importance in our intellectual history, its role in the perception of humans' position in nature, and its impact on our current medical, agricultural, and conservation practices. The rhetoric used in evolution education policy statements emphasizes familiarity with the nature of scientific inquiry as an important learning outcome associated with understanding evolution but provide little guidance with respect to how one might achieve this goal. This dissertation project explores the nature of evolutionary inquiry and how understanding the details of disciplinary reasoning can inform evolution education. The first analysis involves recasting the existing evolution education research literature to assess educational outcomes related to students ability to reason about data using evolutionary biology methods and models. This is followed in the next chapter by a detailed historical and philosophical characterization of evolutionary biology with the goal of providing a richer context for considering what exactly it is we want students to know about evolution as a discipline. Chapter 4 describes the development and implementation of a high school evolution curriculum that engages students with many aspects of model based reasoning. The final component of this reframing of evolution education involves an empirical study characterizing students' understanding of evolutionary biology as a modeling enterprise. Each chapter addresses a different aspect of evolution education and explores the implications of foregrounding disciplinary reasoning as an educational outcome. The analyses are coordinated with one another in the sense

  15. The evolutionary psychology of violence.

    PubMed

    Goetz, Aaron T

    2010-02-01

    This paper reviews theory and research on the evolutionary psychology of violence. First, I examine evidence suggesting that humans have experienced an evolutionary history of violence. Next, I discuss violence as a context-sensitive strategy that might have provided benefits to our ancestors under certain circumstances. I then focus on the two most common forms of violence that plague humans -violence over status contests and intimate partner violence- outlining psychological mechanisms involved in each. Finally, I suggest that greater progress will be made by shifting the study from contexts to mechanisms.

  16. The evolutionary psychology of hunger.

    PubMed

    Al-Shawaf, Laith

    2016-10-01

    An evolutionary psychological perspective suggests that emotions can be understood as coordinating mechanisms whose job is to regulate various psychological and physiological programs in the service of solving an adaptive problem. This paper suggests that it may also be fruitful to approach hunger from this coordinating mechanism perspective. To this end, I put forward an evolutionary task analysis of hunger, generating novel a priori hypotheses about the coordinating effects of hunger on psychological processes such as perception, attention, categorization, and memory. This approach appears empirically fruitful in that it yields a bounty of testable new hypotheses.

  17. The evolutionary psychology of hunger.

    PubMed

    Al-Shawaf, Laith

    2016-10-01

    An evolutionary psychological perspective suggests that emotions can be understood as coordinating mechanisms whose job is to regulate various psychological and physiological programs in the service of solving an adaptive problem. This paper suggests that it may also be fruitful to approach hunger from this coordinating mechanism perspective. To this end, I put forward an evolutionary task analysis of hunger, generating novel a priori hypotheses about the coordinating effects of hunger on psychological processes such as perception, attention, categorization, and memory. This approach appears empirically fruitful in that it yields a bounty of testable new hypotheses. PMID:27328100

  18. Deep evolutionary origins of neurobiology

    PubMed Central

    Mancuso, Stefano

    2009-01-01

    It is generally assumed, both in common-sense argumentations and scientific concepts, that brains and neurons represent late evolutionary achievements which are present only in more advanced animals. Here we overview recently published data clearly revealing that our understanding of bacteria, unicellular eukaryotic organisms, plants, brains and neurons, rooted in the Aristotelian philosophy is flawed. Neural aspects of biological systems are obvious already in bacteria and unicellular biological units such as sexual gametes and diverse unicellular eukaryotic organisms. Altogether, processes and activities thought to represent evolutionary ‘recent’ specializations of the nervous system emerge rather to represent ancient and fundamental cell survival processes. PMID:19513267

  19. Evolutionary Dynamics of Biological Games

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Nowak, Martin A.; Sigmund, Karl

    2004-02-01

    Darwinian dynamics based on mutation and selection form the core of mathematical models for adaptation and coevolution of biological populations. The evolutionary outcome is often not a fitness-maximizing equilibrium but can include oscillations and chaos. For studying frequency-dependent selection, game-theoretic arguments are more appropriate than optimization algorithms. Replicator and adaptive dynamics describe short- and long-term evolution in phenotype space and have found applications ranging from animal behavior and ecology to speciation, macroevolution, and human language. Evolutionary game theory is an essential component of a mathematical and computational approach to biology.

  20. Do "near death experiences" occur only near death?

    PubMed

    Gabbard, G O; Twemlow, S W; Jones, F C

    1981-06-01

    Near deaths experiences are being reported with increasing frequency, but whether the constellation of factors comprising these experiences is unique to near death situations is unknown. This investigation compared near death experiences to other out-of-body experiences to determine if there are unique features associated with near death experiences. Our results indicate that there are no characteristics which are exclusive to near death situations, but our analysis of t-tests is highly suggestive of a number of distinguishing features which differentiate near death experiences from other out-of-body experiences.

  1. Near-death experiences and the psychology of death.

    PubMed

    Tassell-Matamua, Natasha A

    Little is known about the psychological phenomenology of death. Reported across known history and in all cultures by those who have died or been close to death, NDEs challenge objective-mechanistic models by suggesting the phenomenology of death may involve a variety of complex psychological processes. This article discusses three notable characteristics of the NDE--loss of the fear of death, psychological sequelae, and complex conscious abilities--supporting this claim. The implications these have for advancing societal understandings of death are discussed, and their pragmatic application for professions where death is frequently encountered, such as palliative care, is addressed.

  2. [Selective "death programs" or pleiotropic"life programs"? Looking for programmed cell death in the light of evolution].

    PubMed

    Ameisen, Jean-Claude

    2005-01-01

    "Nothing in biology makes sense except in the light of evolution", wrote Theodosius Dobzhansky, one of the founders of the Modern Synthesis that led to the unification of evolutionary theory and genetics in the midst of the 20th century. Programmed cell death is a genetically regulated process of cell suicide that is central to the development, homeostasis and integrity of multicellular organisms. Conversely, the dysregulation of mechanisms controlling cell suicide plays a role in the pathogenesis of a wide range of diseases. While great progress has been achieved in the unveiling of the molecular mechanisms of programmed cell death, a new, and somehow puzzling level of complexity has recently begun to emerge, suggesting i) that several different self destruction pathways may exist and operate in parallel in our cells, and ii) that molecular effectors of cell suicide might also perform other functions unrelated to cell death induction and crucial to cell survival, such as cell differentiation, metabolism, and the regulation of the cell cycle. These new findings, with important physiopathological and therapeutic implications, seem at odds with the paradigm of programmed cell death derived from the studies of Caenorhabditis elegans, which led to the concept of the existence of selective, bona fide death genes that emerged and became selected for their sole capacity to execute or repress cell death. In this review, I will argue that this new level of complexity might only make sense and be understood when considered in a broader evolutionary context than that of our phylogenetic divergence from C. elegans. A new view of the regulated cell death pathways emerges when one attempts to ask the question of when and how they may have become selected during a timeline of 4 billion years, at the level of ancestral single-celled organisms, including the bacteria. I will argue that there may be no such thing as a bona fide genetic cell death program. Rather, in the framework of

  3. The Evolving Theory of Evolutionary Radiations.

    PubMed

    Simões, M; Breitkreuz, L; Alvarado, M; Baca, S; Cooper, J C; Heins, L; Herzog, K; Lieberman, B S

    2016-01-01

    Evolutionary radiations have intrigued biologists for more than 100 years, and our understanding of the patterns and processes associated with these radiations continues to grow and evolve. Recently it has been recognized that there are many different types of evolutionary radiation beyond the well-studied adaptive radiations. We focus here on multifarious types of evolutionary radiations, paying special attention to the abiotic factors that might trigger diversification in clades. We integrate concepts such as exaptation, species selection, coevolution, and the turnover-pulse hypothesis (TPH) into the theoretical framework of evolutionary radiations. We also discuss other phenomena that are related to, but distinct from, evolutionary radiations that have relevance for evolutionary biology.

  4. A Conserved Core of Programmed Cell Death Indicator Genes Discriminates Developmentally and Environmentally Induced Programmed Cell Death in Plants.

    PubMed

    Olvera-Carrillo, Yadira; Van Bel, Michiel; Van Hautegem, Tom; Fendrych, Matyáš; Huysmans, Marlies; Simaskova, Maria; van Durme, Matthias; Buscaill, Pierre; Rivas, Susana; S Coll, Nuria; Coppens, Frederik; Maere, Steven; Nowack, Moritz K

    2015-12-01

    A plethora of diverse programmed cell death (PCD) processes has been described in living organisms. In animals and plants, different forms of PCD play crucial roles in development, immunity, and responses to the environment. While the molecular control of some animal PCD forms such as apoptosis is known in great detail, we still know comparatively little about the regulation of the diverse types of plant PCD. In part, this deficiency in molecular understanding is caused by the lack of reliable reporters to detect PCD processes. Here, we addressed this issue by using a combination of bioinformatics approaches to identify commonly regulated genes during diverse plant PCD processes in Arabidopsis (Arabidopsis thaliana). Our results indicate that the transcriptional signatures of developmentally controlled cell death are largely distinct from the ones associated with environmentally induced cell death. Moreover, different cases of developmental PCD share a set of cell death-associated genes. Most of these genes are evolutionary conserved within the green plant lineage, arguing for an evolutionary conserved core machinery of developmental PCD. Based on this information, we established an array of specific promoter-reporter lines for developmental PCD in Arabidopsis. These PCD indicators represent a powerful resource that can be used in addition to established morphological and biochemical methods to detect and analyze PCD processes in vivo and in planta.

  5. Euryhalinity in an evolutionary context

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Schultz, Eric T.; McCormick, Stephen D.; McCormick, Stephen D.; Farrell, Anthony Peter; Brauner, Colin J.

    2013-01-01

    This chapter focuses on the evolutionary importance and taxonomic distribution of euryhalinity. Euryhalinity refers to broad halotolerance and broad halohabitat distribution. Salinity exposure experiments have demonstrated that species vary tenfold in their range of tolerable salinity levels, primarily because of differences in upper limits. Halotolerance breadth varies with the species’ evolutionary history, as represented by its ordinal classification, and with the species’ halohabitat. Freshwater and seawater species tolerate brackish water; their empirically-determined fundamental haloniche is broader than their realized haloniche, as revealed by the halohabitats they occupy. With respect to halohabitat distribution, a minority of species (<10%) are euryhaline. Habitat-euryhalinity is prevalent among basal actinopterygian fishes, is largely absent from orders arising from intermediate nodes, and reappears in the most derived taxa. There is pronounced family-level variability in the tendency to be halohabitat-euryhaline, which may have arisen during a burst of diversification following the Cretaceous-Palaeogene extinction. Low prevalence notwithstanding, euryhaline species are potent sources of evolutionary diversity. Euryhalinity is regarded as a key innovation trait whose evolution enables exploitation of new adaptive zone, triggering cladogenesis. We review phylogenetically-informed studies that demonstrate freshwater species diversifying from euryhaline ancestors through processes such as landlocking. These studies indicate that some euryhaline taxa are particularly susceptible to changes in halohabitat and subsequent diversification, and some geographic regions have been hotspots for transitions to freshwater. Comparative studies on mechanisms among multiple taxa and at multiple levels of biological integration are needed to clarify evolutionary pathways to, and from, euryhalinity.

  6. Erotomanic stalking in evolutionary perspective.

    PubMed

    Brüne, Martin

    2003-01-01

    Erotomania, the delusion of being loved by another person, comprises marked sex differences concerning prevalence rates and behavior. Whereas traditional psychiatry has considered erotomania to be almost entirely restricted to women, recent studies have revealed that criminal offenses associated with the condition occur much more frequently in men. The main hypothesis of this article is that these findings may be explained in terms of evolutionary theory. Erotomania, accordingly, may be viewed as a pathological variant of a specific sexual strategy that evolved under selection pressures of the human environment of evolutionary adaptedness. The overt behavior is related to the pursuit of long-term mating, its potentially beneficial effect on inclusive fitness of the individual, and disparate strategies of the sexes to ensure sexual fidelity of the potential partner. Therefore, the evolutionary approach provides a plausible explanation as to why forensically relevant erotomania prevails in men. The pathological process of delusional misinterpretation of perceived signals from the social environment itself may result from poor reality testing due to a failure of social meta-cognition. The evolutionary perspective may provide additional insights into the nature of sex-specific behaviors and may improve our understanding of forensically relevant behaviors. PMID:12579619

  7. Evolutionary Psychology and Intelligence Research

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Kanazawa, Satoshi

    2010-01-01

    This article seeks to unify two subfields of psychology that have hitherto stood separately: evolutionary psychology and intelligence research/differential psychology. I suggest that general intelligence may simultaneously be an evolved adaptation and an individual-difference variable. Tooby and Cosmides's (1990a) notion of random quantitative…

  8. Current Issues in Evolutionary Paleontology.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Scully, Erik Paul

    1987-01-01

    Describes some of the contributions made by the field of paleontology to theories in geology and biology. Suggests that the two best examples of modern evolutionary paleontology relate to the theory of punctuated equilibria, and the possibility that mass extinctions may be cyclic. (TW)

  9. Evolutionary Perspective in Child Growth

    PubMed Central

    Hochberg, Ze’ev

    2011-01-01

    Hereditary, environmental, and stochastic factors determine a child’s growth in his unique environment, but their relative contribution to the phenotypic outcome and the extent of stochastic programming that is required to alter human phenotypes is not known because few data are available. This is an attempt to use evolutionary life-history theory in understanding child growth in a broad evolutionary perspective, using the data and theory of evolutionary predictive adaptive growth-related strategies. Transitions from one life-history phase to the next have inherent adaptive plasticity in their timing. Humans evolved to withstand energy crises by decreasing their body size, and evolutionary short-term adaptations to energy crises utilize a plasticity that modifies the timing of transition from infancy into childhood, culminating in short stature in times of energy crisis. Transition to juvenility is part of a strategy of conversion from a period of total dependence on the family and tribe for provision and security to self-supply, and a degree of adaptive plasticity is provided and determines body composition. Transition to adolescence entails plasticity in adapting to energy resources, other environmental cues, and the social needs of the maturing adolescent to determine life-span and the period of fecundity and fertility. Fundamental questions are raised by a life-history approach to the unique growth pattern of each child in his given genetic background and current environment. PMID:23908815

  10. Evolutionary perspective in child growth.

    PubMed

    Hochberg, Ze'ev

    2011-07-01

    Hereditary, environmental, and stochastic factors determine a child's growth in his unique environment, but their relative contribution to the phenotypic outcome and the extent of stochastic programming that is required to alter human phenotypes is not known because few data are available. This is an attempt to use evolutionary life-history theory in understanding child growth in a broad evolutionary perspective, using the data and theory of evolutionary predictive adaptive growth-related strategies. Transitions from one life-history phase to the next have inherent adaptive plasticity in their timing. Humans evolved to withstand energy crises by decreasing their body size, and evolutionary short-term adaptations to energy crises utilize a plasticity that modifies the timing of transition from infancy into childhood, culminating in short stature in times of energy crisis. Transition to juvenility is part of a strategy of conversion from a period of total dependence on the family and tribe for provision and security to self-supply, and a degree of adaptive plasticity is provided and determines body composition. Transition to adolescence entails plasticity in adapting to energy resources, other environmental cues, and the social needs of the maturing adolescent to determine life-span and the period of fecundity and fertility. Fundamental questions are raised by a life-history approach to the unique growth pattern of each child in his given genetic background and current environment.

  11. Death from Nitrous Oxide.

    PubMed

    Bäckström, Björn; Johansson, Bengt; Eriksson, Anders

    2015-11-01

    Nitrous oxide is an inflammable gas that gives no smell or taste. It has a history of abuse as long as its clinical use, and deaths, although rare, have been reported. We describe two cases of accidental deaths related to voluntary inhalation of nitrous oxide, both found dead with a gas mask covering the face. In an attempt to find an explanation to why the victims did not react properly to oncoming hypoxia, we performed experiments where a test person was allowed to breath in a closed system, with or without nitrous oxide added. Vital signs and gas concentrations as well as subjective symptoms were recorded. The experiments indicated that the explanation to the fact that neither of the descendents had reacted to oncoming hypoxia and hypercapnia was due to the inhalation of nitrous oxide. This study raises the question whether nitrous oxide really should be easily, commercially available. PMID:26258592

  12. Death by necrosis

    PubMed Central

    Syntichaki, Popi; Tavernarakis, Nektarios

    2002-01-01

    Cells suffer necrotic death when exposed to extreme environmental conditions, adverse and excessive stimuli, or when deleterious mutations are encoded in their genetic material. Unlike apoptosis, which involves a highly regulated and elaborate network of biochemical events and cascades, necrosis has been considered generally to be a chaotic decadence process that effects the inexorable demise of cells otherwise not destined to die. This grim prospect is now slowly being overturned, mostly by exciting new findings in two simple model organisms, Caenorhabditis elegans and Drosophila melanogaster. Despite the wide spectrum of necrosis-initiating conditions, evidence is accumulating that execution of necrotic or neurodegenerative cell death may be carried out by a finite common set of mechanisms. PMID:12101090

  13. Atypical autoerotic deaths

    SciTech Connect

    Gowitt, G.T.; Hanzlick, R.L. )

    1992-06-01

    So-called typical' autoerotic fatalities are the result of asphyxia due to mechanical compression of the neck, chest, or abdomen, whereas atypical' autoeroticism involves sexual self-stimulation by other means. The authors present five atypical autoerotic fatalities that involved the use of dichlorodifluoromethane, nitrous oxide, isobutyl nitrite, cocaine, or compounds containing 1-1-1-trichloroethane. Mechanisms of death are discussed in each case and the pertinent literature is reviewed.

  14. Fear of death.

    PubMed

    Penson, Richard T; Partridge, Rosamund A; Shah, Muhammad A; Giansiracusa, David; Chabner, Bruce A; Lynch, Thomas J

    2005-02-01

    Shortly before his death in 1995, Kenneth B. Schwartz, a cancer patient at Massachusetts General Hospital (MGH) founded The Kenneth B. Schwartz Center at MGH. The Schwartz Center is a nonprofit organization dedicated to supporting and advancing compassionate health care delivery, which provides hope to the patient and support to caregivers and encourages the healing process. The center sponsors the Schwartz Center Rounds, a monthly multidisciplinary forum where caregivers reflect on important psychosocial issues faced by patients, their families, and their caregivers, and gain insight and support from fellow staff members. For many, cancer is synonymous with death. Fearing death is a rational response. For too long, medicine has ignored this primeval fear. Increasingly, clinicians recognize and address end-of-life issues, facing patients' and our own emotional vulnerabilities in order to connect and explore problems and fears. Listening and learning from the patient guides us as we acknowledge much of the mystery that still surrounds the dying process. Rarely is there a simple or right answer. An empathetic response to suffering patients is the best support. Support is vital in fostering the adjustment of patients. A silent presence may prove more helpful than well-meant counsel for many patients. Through an examination of eight caregiver narratives of their patients' experiences, the role of the health care provider in the dying process, particularly in regard to challenging fear, is reviewed.

  15. Computational Physics and Evolutionary Dynamics

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Fontana, Walter

    2000-03-01

    One aspect of computational physics deals with the characterization of statistical regularities in materials. Computational physics meets biology when these materials can evolve. RNA molecules are a case in point. The folding of RNA sequences into secondary structures (shapes) inspires a simple biophysically grounded genotype-phenotype map that can be explored computationally and in the laboratory. We have identified some statistical regularities of this map and begin to understand their evolutionary consequences. (1) ``typical shapes'': Only a small subset of shapes realized by the RNA folding map is typical, in the sense of containing shapes that are realized significantly more often than others. Consequence: evolutionary histories mostly involve typical shapes, and thus exhibit generic properties. (2) ``neutral networks'': Sequences folding into the same shape are mutationally connected into a network that reaches across sequence space. Consequence: Evolutionary transitions between shapes reflect the fraction of boundary shared by the corresponding neutral networks in sequence space. The notion of a (dis)continuous transition can be made rigorous. (3) ``shape space covering'': Given a random sequence, a modest number of mutations suffices to reach a sequence realizing any typical shape. Consequence: The effective search space for evolutionary optimization is greatly reduced, and adaptive success is less dependent on initial conditions. (4) ``plasticity mirrors variability'': The repertoire of low energy shapes of a sequence is an indicator of how much and in which ways its energetically optimal shape can be altered by a single point mutation. Consequence: (i) Thermodynamic shape stability and mutational robustness are intimately linked. (ii) When natural selection favors the increase of stability, extreme mutational robustness -- to the point of an evolutionary dead-end -- is produced as a side effect. (iii) The hallmark of robust shapes is modularity.

  16. Cyanobacterial toxins: biosynthetic routes and evolutionary roots.

    PubMed

    Dittmann, Elke; Fewer, David P; Neilan, Brett A

    2013-01-01

    Cyanobacteria produce an unparalleled variety of toxins that can cause severe health problems or even death in humans, and wild or domestic animals. In the last decade, biosynthetic pathways have been assigned to the majority of the known toxin families. This review summarizes current knowledge about the enzymatic basis for the production of the hepatotoxins microcystin and nodularin, the cytotoxin cylindrospermopsin, the neurotoxins anatoxin and saxitoxin, and the dermatotoxin lyngbyatoxin. Elucidation of the biosynthetic pathways of the toxins has paved the way for the development of molecular techniques for the detection and quantification of the producing cyanobacteria in different environments. Phylogenetic analyses of related clusters from a large number of strains has also allowed for the reconstruction of the evolutionary scenarios that have led to the emergence, diversification, and loss of such gene clusters in different strains and genera of cyanobacteria. Advances in the understanding of toxin biosynthesis and evolution have provided new methods for drinking-water quality control and may inspire the development of techniques for the management of bloom formation in the future.

  17. Evolutionary stability of mixed strategies on graphs

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Li, Yan; Liu, Xinsheng; Claussen, Jens Christian

    2016-07-01

    Up to the present time, the study of evolutionary dynamics mostly focused on pure strategy games in finite discrete strategy space, either in well-mixed or structured populations. In this paper, we study mixed strategy games in continuous strategy space on graphs of degree k. Each player is arranged on a vertex of the graph. The edges denote the interaction between two individuals. In the limit of weak selection, we first derive the payoff functions of two mixed strategies under three different updating rules, named birth–death, death–birth and imitation. Then we obtain the conditions for a strategy being a continuously stable strategy (CSS), and we also confirm that the equilibrium distribution corresponding to the CSS is neighborhood attracting and strongly uninvadable. Finally, we apply our theory to the prisoner’s dilemma and the snowdrift game to obtain possible CSS. Simulations are performed for the two special games and the results are well consistent with the conclusions we made.

  18. Death Sentences: A Content Analysis of Children's Death Literature

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Poling, Devereaux A.; Hupp, Julie M.

    2008-01-01

    A multidimensional concept of death must include biological, sociocultural, and emotional components. Children glean information about death in many ways, one of which is through books. In this study, the authors compared the 3 dimensions of death-related information (irreversibility, inevitability, nonfunctionality) in 24 young children's picture…

  19. A Death in the Family: Death as a Zen Concept

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Black, Helen K.; Rubinstein, Robert L.

    2013-01-01

    This study is based on original research that explored family reaction to the death of an elderly husband and father. We interviewed 34 families (a family included a widow and two adult biological children) approximately 6 to 10 months after the death. In one-on-one interviews, we discussed family members' initial reaction to the death, how the…

  20. The birth-and-death evolution of multigene families revisited.

    PubMed

    Eirín-López, J M; Rebordinos, L; Rooney, A P; Rozas, J

    2012-01-01

    For quite some time, scientists have wondered how multigene families come into existence. Over the last several decades, a number of genomic and evolutionary mechanisms have been discovered that shape the evolution, structure and organization of multigene families. While gene duplication represents the core process, other phenomena such as pseudogene formation, gene loss, recombination and natural selection have been found to act in varying degrees to shape the evolution of gene families. How these forces influence the fate of gene duplicates has ultimately led molecular evolutionary biologists to ask the question: How and why do some duplicates gain new functions, whereas others deteriorate into pseudogenes or even get deleted from the genome? What ultimately lies at the heart of this question is the desire to understand how multigene families originate and diversify. The birth-and-death model of multigene family evolution provides a framework to answer this question. However, the growing availability of molecular data has revealed a much more complex scenario in which the birth-and-death process interacts with different mechanisms, leading to evolutionary novelty that can be exploited by a species as means for adaptation to various selective challenges. Here we provide an up-to-date review into the role of the birth-and-death model and the relevance of its interaction with forces such as genomic drift, selection and concerted evolution in generating and driving the evolution of different archetypal multigene families. We discuss the scientific evidence supporting the notion of birth-and-death as the major mechanism guiding the long-term evolution of multigene families.

  1. Childhood Deaths from Physical Abuse.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Kasim, Mohd. Sham; and Others

    1995-01-01

    This paper describes 30 cases of childhood deaths caused by physical abuse in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia. Data presented include ethnic origins, age, causes of death, identity of perpetrators, and marital situation of parents. (DB)

  2. The time of death's badness.

    PubMed

    Johansson, Jens

    2012-10-01

    Those who endorse the view that death is in some cases bad for the deceased--a view that, as I shall explain, has considerable bearing on many bioethical issues--need to address the following, Epicurean question: When is death bad for the one who dies? The two most popular answers are "before death" (priorism) and "after death" (subsequentism). Part of the support for these two views consists in the idea that a third answer, "at no time" (atemporalism), makes death unsatisfyingly different from other evils. I argue that this objection is mistaken, and that priorism and subsequentism face problems that atemporalism avoids. Moreover, I argue that if it is nonetheless insisted that we must find a time at which my death is bad for me, we can appeal to periods that begin before my death and end after my death. I end with some implications for posthumous harm.

  3. Life, Death, and Second Chances

    MedlinePlus

    ... Home Current Issue Past Issues Special Section Life, Death, and Second Chances Past Issues / Fall 2007 Table ... New Asthma Guidelines: What You Should Know / Life, Death, and Second Chances / Asthma Research: The NIH-NJRC ...

  4. Sudden Infant Death Syndrome (SIDS)

    MedlinePlus

    ... Information Clinical Trials Resources and Publications Sudden Infant Death Syndrome (SIDS): Condition Information Skip sharing on social ... Share this: Page Content SIDS is the sudden death of an infant younger than 1 year of ...

  5. Death in Denmark: a reply.

    PubMed Central

    Lamb, D

    1991-01-01

    This reply to Martyn Evans's support for a cardiac-centered concept of death attempts to meet some objections to the brainstem definition of death. Evans's appeal to Wittgenstein's philosophy is also criticised. PMID:1870081

  6. Death in Denmark: a reply.

    PubMed

    Lamb, D

    1991-06-01

    This reply to Martyn Evans's support for a cardiac-centered concept of death attempts to meet some objections to the brainstem definition of death. Evans's appeal to Wittgenstein's philosophy is also criticised.

  7. Evolutionary branching under multi-dimensional evolutionary constraints.

    PubMed

    Ito, Hiroshi; Sasaki, Akira

    2016-10-21

    The fitness of an existing phenotype and of a potential mutant should generally depend on the frequencies of other existing phenotypes. Adaptive evolution driven by such frequency-dependent fitness functions can be analyzed effectively using adaptive dynamics theory, assuming rare mutation and asexual reproduction. When possible mutations are restricted to certain directions due to developmental, physiological, or physical constraints, the resulting adaptive evolution may be restricted to subspaces (constraint surfaces) with fewer dimensionalities than the original trait spaces. To analyze such dynamics along constraint surfaces efficiently, we develop a Lagrange multiplier method in the framework of adaptive dynamics theory. On constraint surfaces of arbitrary dimensionalities described with equality constraints, our method efficiently finds local evolutionarily stable strategies, convergence stable points, and evolutionary branching points. We also derive the conditions for the existence of evolutionary branching points on constraint surfaces when the shapes of the surfaces can be chosen freely. PMID:27444402

  8. Self-related consequences of death fear and death denial.

    PubMed

    Cozzolino, Philip J; Blackie, Laura E R; Meyers, Lawrence S

    2014-01-01

    This study explores self-related outcomes (e.g., esteem, self-concept clarity, existential well-being) as a function of the interaction between self-reported levels of death fear and death denial. Consistent with the idea that positive existential growth can come from individuals facing, rather than denying, their mortality (Cozzolino, 2006 ), the authors observed that not fearing and denying death can bolster important positive components of the self. That is, individuals low in death denial and death fear evidenced an enhanced self that is valued, clearly conceived, efficacious, and that has meaning and purpose.

  9. DEATH CONCERN AND DEATH OBSESSION IN IRANIAN NURSES.

    PubMed

    Dadfar, Mahboubeh; Lester, David

    2015-06-01

    The goal of the present study was to examine whether nurses had increased death concern and death obsession compared to non-nursing staff. A Death Concern Scale and a Death Obsession Scale, translated into Persian, were administered to 56 female Iranian nurses (55% in their 30s) and compared to 56 female hospital staff members (45% in their 30s). The two groups did not differ significantly in their scores on either scale. It is, therefore, recommended that death education programs in hospitals be given to all staff, nursing and non-nursing.

  10. Decoding cell death signals in liver inflammation.

    PubMed

    Brenner, Catherine; Galluzzi, Lorenzo; Kepp, Oliver; Kroemer, Guido

    2013-09-01

    Inflammation can be either beneficial or detrimental to the liver, depending on multiple factors. Mild (i.e., limited in intensity and destined to resolve) inflammatory responses have indeed been shown to exert consistent hepatoprotective effects, contributing to tissue repair and promoting the re-establishment of homeostasis. Conversely, excessive (i.e., disproportionate in intensity and permanent) inflammation may induce a massive loss of hepatocytes and hence exacerbate the severity of various hepatic conditions, including ischemia-reperfusion injury, systemic metabolic alterations (e.g., obesity, diabetes, non-alcoholic fatty liver disorders), alcoholic hepatitis, intoxication by xenobiotics and infection, de facto being associated with irreversible liver damage, fibrosis, and carcinogenesis. Both liver-resident cells (e.g., Kupffer cells, hepatic stellate cells, sinusoidal endothelial cells) and cells that are recruited in response to injury (e.g., monocytes, macrophages, dendritic cells, natural killer cells) emit pro-inflammatory signals including - but not limited to - cytokines, chemokines, lipid messengers, and reactive oxygen species that contribute to the apoptotic or necrotic demise of hepatocytes. In turn, dying hepatocytes release damage-associated molecular patterns that-upon binding to evolutionary conserved pattern recognition receptors-activate cells of the innate immune system to further stimulate inflammatory responses, hence establishing a highly hepatotoxic feedforward cycle of inflammation and cell death. In this review, we discuss the cellular and molecular mechanisms that account for the most deleterious effect of hepatic inflammation at the cellular level, that is, the initiation of a massive cell death response among hepatocytes.

  11. Death of an Adult Child

    MedlinePlus

    ... iGive.com Purchase Through AmazonSmile Contact Us Donate Death of an Adult Child The death of any child, regardless of cause or age, ... the situations that may have caused their child’s death. Judgmental statements from others indicating that the child ...

  12. Helping Students Cope with Death.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Rodabough, Tillman

    1980-01-01

    Classroom teachers need to understand the broad differences that exist between a child's perception of death and that of an adult and should be prepared to confront and cope with the effects of death and grief upon students. Children's perceptions of death and ways in which the teacher can help the child with his grief are described. (JN)

  13. Winning the Race with Death.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Goodman, Lisl M.

    The hypothesis of a negative relationship between level of self-actualization and fear of death was based on the assumption that people are not afraid of death per se but of the incompleteness of their lives. Fear of death was furthermore assumed to inhibit orientation toward the future, thereby restricting movement toward achievement and…

  14. Teaching about Death to Undergraduates.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Pine, Vanderlyn R.; And Others

    Development, implementation, and teaching of a college-level course on dying and death are described. The authors review their own experiences in becoming involved with death education and describe teaching methods, problems, and content of their current course in dying and death at the State University of New York, College at New Paltz. Because…

  15. Death: Realism in Children's Books.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Danielson, Kathy Everts

    In the past, books for children treated death fearfully, morbidly, and didactically, but now children's literature treats death in a more realistic manner and is sensitive to its emotional aspects. Current theories suggest that children perceive death differently at various ages. G. P. Koocher (1973) used J. Piaget's cognitive stages as the basis…

  16. Deaths: Final Data for 1998.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Murphy, Sherry L.

    2000-01-01

    This report presents final 1998 data on U.S. deaths and death rates according to demographic and medical characteristics such as age, sex, race, Hispanic origin, marital status, educational attainment, injury at work, state of residence, and cause of death. Trends and patterns in general mortality, life expectancy, and infant and maternal…

  17. Changing Breton Responses to Death.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Badone, Ellen

    1988-01-01

    Based on fieldwork conducted in Brittany, France, during 1983 and 1984, discusses changes in Breton responses to death which have accompanied modernization and economic development. Suggests that familiarity with death and acceptance of it are being replaced by the "denial of death" characteristic of contemporary Western culture. Notes parallel…

  18. Nonequivalence of updating rules in evolutionary games under high mutation rates

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kaiping, G. A.; Jacobs, G. S.; Cox, S. J.; Sluckin, T. J.

    2014-10-01

    Moran processes are often used to model selection in evolutionary simulations. The updating rule in Moran processes is a birth-death process, i. e., selection according to fitness of an individual to give birth, followed by the death of a random individual. For well-mixed populations with only two strategies this updating rule is known to be equivalent to selecting unfit individuals for death and then selecting randomly for procreation (biased death-birth process). It is, however, known that this equivalence does not hold when considering structured populations. Here we study whether changing the updating rule can also have an effect in well-mixed populations in the presence of more than two strategies and high mutation rates. We find, using three models from different areas of evolutionary simulation, that the choice of updating rule can change model results. We show, e. g., that going from the birth-death process to the death-birth process can change a public goods game with punishment from containing mostly defectors to having a majority of cooperative strategies. From the examples given we derive guidelines indicating when the choice of the updating rule can be expected to have an impact on the results of the model.

  19. Quantitative evolutionary dynamics using high-resolution lineage tracking.

    PubMed

    Levy, Sasha F; Blundell, Jamie R; Venkataram, Sandeep; Petrov, Dmitri A; Fisher, Daniel S; Sherlock, Gavin

    2015-03-12

    Evolution of large asexual cell populations underlies ∼30% of deaths worldwide, including those caused by bacteria, fungi, parasites, and cancer. However, the dynamics underlying these evolutionary processes remain poorly understood because they involve many competing beneficial lineages, most of which never rise above extremely low frequencies in the population. To observe these normally hidden evolutionary dynamics, we constructed a sequencing-based ultra high-resolution lineage tracking system in Saccharomyces cerevisiae that allowed us to monitor the relative frequencies of ∼500,000 lineages simultaneously. In contrast to some expectations, we found that the spectrum of fitness effects of beneficial mutations is neither exponential nor monotonic. Early adaptation is a predictable consequence of this spectrum and is strikingly reproducible, but the initial small-effect mutations are soon outcompeted by rarer large-effect mutations that result in variability between replicates. These results suggest that early evolutionary dynamics may be deterministic for a period of time before stochastic effects become important.

  20. Body cooling after death.

    PubMed

    Kuehn, L A; Tikuisis, P; Livingstone, S; Limmer, R

    1980-09-01

    In the analyses of cases of death in cold air environments, it is often of interest to determine the time required for the body of the individual to cool to ambient temperature. Usually such determinations have been based on Newton's law of cooling. This paper describes a case history in which this technique was experimentally tested and consequently abandoned in favour of a more complex biophysical model which more accurately described the thermo-physical events inherent in body cooling. This model is recommended for determination of the times required for various body parts to cool to ambient environmental temperatures.

  1. Computer implants and death.

    PubMed

    Gert, Bernard

    2009-01-01

    Although a patient whose whole brain has ceased to function may have his heart, lungs, and other organs continue to function if they are connected to the appropriate machines, the patient is still dead and the machines can be disconnected. In the future, nanotechnology, or other technology, may allow putting implants in the brainstem that can keep a patient's heart, lungs and other organs functioning, even though the whole natural brain has ceased to function. It would be useful to consider how this technology might affect the criterion of death before it is actually available.

  2. Sudden death of entanglement.

    PubMed

    Yu, Ting; Eberly, J H

    2009-01-30

    A new development in the dynamical behavior of elementary quantum systems is the surprising discovery that correlation between two quantum units of information called qubits can be degraded by environmental noise in a way not seen previously in studies of dissipation. This new route for dissipation attacks quantum entanglement, the essential resource for quantum information as well as the central feature in the Einstein-Podolsky-Rosen so-called paradox and in discussions of the fate of Schrödinger's cat. The effect has been labeled ESD, which stands for early-stage disentanglement or, more frequently, entanglement sudden death. We review recent progress in studies focused on this phenomenon.

  3. Happiness and Death Distress: Two Separate Factors

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Abdel-Khalek, Ahmed M.

    2005-01-01

    The aim of the present study was to explore the relationship between happiness and death distress (death anxiety, death depression, and death obsession) in 275 volunteer Kuwaiti undergraduates. They responded to the Oxford Happiness Inventory, the Death Anxiety Scale, the Arabic Scale of Death Anxiety, the Death Depression Scale-Revised, and the…

  4. Evolutionary inspirations for drug discovery.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Hong-Yu; Chen, Ling-Ling; Li, Xue-Juan; Zhang, Jian

    2010-10-01

    Conceptual innovations are needed to address the challenge of 'more investments, fewer drugs' in the pharmaceutical industry. Since the publication of The Origin of Species by Charles Darwin 150 years ago, evolution has been a central concept in biology. In this article, we show that evolutionary concepts are also helpful to streamline the drug-discovery pipeline through facilitating the discovery of targets and drug candidates. Furthermore, the antioxidant paradox can be addressed by an evolutionary methodology. Through examining the evolved biological roles of natural polyphenols (which dominate current antioxidant drug discovery), we reveal that polyphenols (particularly flavonoids) are not evolved for scavenging free radicals. This finding provides new clues to understanding why the strong in vitro antioxidant activities of polyphenols cannot be translated into in vivo effects. Polyphenols have evolved a superior ability to bind various proteins, so we also argue that they are good starting points for multi-target drugs. PMID:20724009

  5. Evolutionary model of stock markets

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kaldasch, Joachim

    2014-12-01

    The paper presents an evolutionary economic model for the price evolution of stocks. Treating a stock market as a self-organized system governed by a fast purchase process and slow variations of demand and supply the model suggests that the short term price distribution has the form a logistic (Laplace) distribution. The long term return can be described by Laplace-Gaussian mixture distributions. The long term mean price evolution is governed by a Walrus equation, which can be transformed into a replicator equation. This allows quantifying the evolutionary price competition between stocks. The theory suggests that stock prices scaled by the price over all stocks can be used to investigate long-term trends in a Fisher-Pry plot. The price competition that follows from the model is illustrated by examining the empirical long-term price trends of two stocks.

  6. Ultimate Realities: Deterministic and Evolutionary

    PubMed Central

    Moxley, Roy A

    2007-01-01

    References to ultimate reality commonly turn up in the behavioral literature as references to determinism. However, this determinism is often difficult to interpret. There are different kinds of determinisms as well as different kinds of ultimate realities for a behaviorist to consider. To clarify some of the issues involved, the views of ultimate realities are treated as falling along a continuum, with extreme views of complete indeterminism and complete determinism at either end and various mixes in between. Doing so brings into play evolutionary realities and the movement from indeterminism to determinism, as in Peirce's evolutionary cosmology. In addition, this framework helps to show how the views of determinism by B. F. Skinner and other behaviorists have shifted over time. PMID:22478489

  7. Evolutionary inspirations for drug discovery.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Hong-Yu; Chen, Ling-Ling; Li, Xue-Juan; Zhang, Jian

    2010-10-01

    Conceptual innovations are needed to address the challenge of 'more investments, fewer drugs' in the pharmaceutical industry. Since the publication of The Origin of Species by Charles Darwin 150 years ago, evolution has been a central concept in biology. In this article, we show that evolutionary concepts are also helpful to streamline the drug-discovery pipeline through facilitating the discovery of targets and drug candidates. Furthermore, the antioxidant paradox can be addressed by an evolutionary methodology. Through examining the evolved biological roles of natural polyphenols (which dominate current antioxidant drug discovery), we reveal that polyphenols (particularly flavonoids) are not evolved for scavenging free radicals. This finding provides new clues to understanding why the strong in vitro antioxidant activities of polyphenols cannot be translated into in vivo effects. Polyphenols have evolved a superior ability to bind various proteins, so we also argue that they are good starting points for multi-target drugs.

  8. Evolutionary speed of species invasions.

    PubMed

    García-Ramos, Gisela; Rodríguez, Diego

    2002-04-01

    Successful invasion may depend of the capacity of a species to adjust genetically to a spatially varying environment. This research modeled a species invasion by examining the interaction between a quantitative genetic trait and population density. It assumed: (I) a quantitative genetic trait describes the adaptation of an individual to its local ecological conditions; (2) populations far from the local optimum grow more slowly than those near the optimum; and (3) the evolution of a trait depends on local population density, because differences in local population densities cause asymmetrical gene flow. This genetics-density interaction determined the propagation speed of populations. Numerical simulations showed that populations spread by advancing as two synchronic traveling waves, one for population density and one for trait adaptation. The form of the density wave was a step front that advances homogenizing populations at their carrying capacity; the adaptation wave was a curve with finite slope that homogenizes populations at full adaptation. The largest speed of population expansion, for a dimensionless analysis, corresponded to an almost homogeneous spatial environment when this model approached an ecological description such as the Fisher-Skellam's model. A large genetic response also favored faster speeds. Evolutionary speeds, in a natural scale, showed a wide range of rates that were also slower compared to models that only consider demographics. This evolutionary speed increased with high heritability, strong stabilizing selection, and high intrinsic growth rate. It decreased for steeper environmental gradients. Also indicated was an optimal dispersal rate over which evolutionary speed declined. This is expected because dispersal moves individuals further, but homogenizes populations genetically, making them maladapted. The evolutionary speed was compared to observed data. Furthermore, a moderate increase in the speed of expansion was predicted for

  9. Exaptation, adaptation, and evolutionary psychology.

    PubMed

    Schulz, Armin

    2013-01-01

    One of the most well known methodological criticisms of evolutionary psychology is Gould's claim that the program pays too much attention to adaptations, and not enough to exaptations. Almost as well known is the standard rebuttal of that criticism: namely, that the study of exaptations in fact depends on the study of adaptations. However, as I try to show in this paper, it is premature to think that this is where this debate ends. First, the notion of exaptation that is commonly used in this debate is different from the one that Gould and Vrba originally defined. Noting this is particularly important, since, second, the standard reply to Gould's criticism only works if the criticism is framed in terms of the former notion of exaptation, and not the latter. However, third, this ultimately does not change the outcome of the debate much, as evolutionary psychologists can respond to the revamped criticism of their program by claiming that the original notion of exaptation is theoretically and empirically uninteresting. By discussing these issues further, I also seek to determine, more generally, which ways of approaching the adaptationism debate in evolutionary biology are useful, and which not.

  10. Cancer research meets evolutionary biology

    PubMed Central

    Pepper, John W; Scott Findlay, C; Kassen, Rees; Spencer, Sabrina L; Maley, Carlo C

    2009-01-01

    There is increasing evidence that Darwin's theory of evolution by natural selection provides insights into the etiology and treatment of cancer. On a microscopic scale, neoplastic cells meet the conditions for evolution by Darwinian selection: cell reproduction with heritable variability that affects cell survival and replication. This suggests that, like other areas of biological and biomedical research, Darwinian theory can provide a general framework for understanding many aspects of cancer, including problems of great clinical importance. With the availability of raw molecular data increasing rapidly, this theory may provide guidance in translating data into understanding and progress. Several conceptual and analytical tools from evolutionary biology can be applied to cancer biology. Two clinical problems may benefit most from the application of Darwinian theory: neoplastic progression and acquired therapeutic resistance. The Darwinian theory of cancer has especially profound implications for drug development, both in terms of explaining past difficulties, and pointing the way toward new approaches. Because cancer involves complex evolutionary processes, research should incorporate both tractable (simplified) experimental systems, and also longitudinal observational studies of the evolutionary dynamics of cancer in laboratory animals and in human patients. Cancer biology will require new tools to control the evolution of neoplastic cells. PMID:25567847

  11. Evolutionary routes to stable ownership.

    PubMed

    Hare, D; Reeve, H K; Blossey, B

    2016-06-01

    Ownership can evolve in potentially any species. Drawing on insights from across disciplines, we distinguish between possession and ownership and present species-neutral criteria for ownership, defined as respect for possession. We use a variant of the tug-of-war evolutionary game to demonstrate how ownership can evolve in the form of a new, biologically realistic strategy, Restraint With Retaliation (RWR). In our game, resource holding potential (RHP) is assumed to be equal between interactants, and resource holding asymmetry determines whether ownership is adaptive. RWR will be evolutionarily stable when the ratio of resource holdings between interactants is relatively low, but not when this ratio is sufficiently high. We offer RWR as one evolutionary route to ownership among many, and discuss how ownership unites previously described behavioural phenomena across taxa. We propose that some but not all mechanisms of territory formation and maintenance can be considered ownership, and show that territories are not the only resources that can be owned. We argue that ownership can be a powerful cooperative solution to tragedies of the commons and problems of collective action throughout the biological world. We advance recent scholarship that has begun to investigate the biological importance of ownership, and we call for a comprehensive account of its evolutionary logic and taxonomic distribution. We propose that ownership should be considered a fundamental, unifying biological phenomenon. PMID:26991035

  12. Evolutionary routes to stable ownership.

    PubMed

    Hare, D; Reeve, H K; Blossey, B

    2016-06-01

    Ownership can evolve in potentially any species. Drawing on insights from across disciplines, we distinguish between possession and ownership and present species-neutral criteria for ownership, defined as respect for possession. We use a variant of the tug-of-war evolutionary game to demonstrate how ownership can evolve in the form of a new, biologically realistic strategy, Restraint With Retaliation (RWR). In our game, resource holding potential (RHP) is assumed to be equal between interactants, and resource holding asymmetry determines whether ownership is adaptive. RWR will be evolutionarily stable when the ratio of resource holdings between interactants is relatively low, but not when this ratio is sufficiently high. We offer RWR as one evolutionary route to ownership among many, and discuss how ownership unites previously described behavioural phenomena across taxa. We propose that some but not all mechanisms of territory formation and maintenance can be considered ownership, and show that territories are not the only resources that can be owned. We argue that ownership can be a powerful cooperative solution to tragedies of the commons and problems of collective action throughout the biological world. We advance recent scholarship that has begun to investigate the biological importance of ownership, and we call for a comprehensive account of its evolutionary logic and taxonomic distribution. We propose that ownership should be considered a fundamental, unifying biological phenomenon.

  13. How evolutionary thinking affects people's ideas about aging interventions.

    PubMed

    Mitteldorf, Josh

    2006-01-01

    Evolutionary theory has guided the development of antiaging interventions in some conscious and some unconscious ways. It is a standard assumption that the body's health has been optimized by natural selection, and that the most benign and promising medical strategies should support the body's efforts to maintain itself. The very concept of natural healing is a reflection of evolutionary thinking about health. Meanwhile, a developing body of experimental evidence points to the startling hypothesis that aging is a metabolic program, under genetic control we are programmed for death. Evolution has provided that the aging program can be abated in times of stress, e.g., caloric restriction. CR mimetics are already recognized as a promising avenue for antiaging research. Beyond this, there are two ancient mechanisms of programmed death in protists that have survived half a billion years of evolution, and still figure in the aging of vertebrates today. These are apoptosis and replicative senescence via telomere truncation. Most researchers have been wary of modifying these mechanisms because they are known to play a stopgap role in cancer prevention. But intriguing evidence suggests that, despite some counter-carcinogenic function, the net result of both these mechanisms may be to shorten lifespan. Thus, interventions that suppress apoptosis and that preserve telomeres may be promising avenues for life extension research. A third element of the body's self-destruction program co-opts the inflammation response. Epidemiological evidence suggests that NSAIDs including aspirin protect against atherosclerosis, arthritis, and some forms of cancer. It may be that aging engages an autoimmune response that can be modified by drugs acting more narrowly on this same pathway. The existence of an evolutionary program that controls aging from the top down supports a new optimism concerning the types of antiaging interventions that are possible, and the likelihood that simple

  14. PDT: death pathways

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kessel, David

    2007-02-01

    Cellular targets of photodynamic therapy include mitochondria, lysosomes, the endoplasmic reticulum (ER) and the plasma membrane. PDT can evoke necrosis, autophagy and apoptosis, or combinations of these, depending on the PDT dose, the site(s) of photodamage and the cellular phenotype. It has been established that loss of viability occurs even when the apoptotic program is inhibited. Studies assessing effects of ER or mitochondrial photodamage, involving loss of Bcl-2 function, indicate that low-dose PDT elicited a rapid autophagic response in L1210 cells. This was attributed to the ability of autophagy to recycle photodamaged organelles, and there was partial protection from loss of viability. This effect was not observed in L1210/Atg7, where autophagy was silenced. At higher PDT doses, apoptotic cells were observed within 60 min in both cell lines, but more so in L1210. The ability of L1210 cells to undergo autophagy did not offer protection from cell death at the higher PDT dose. Previous studies had indicated that autophagy can contribute to cell death, since L1210 cells that do not undergo an initial apoptotic response often contain multiple autophagic vacuoles 24 hr later. With L1210/Atg7, apoptosis alone may account for the loss of viability at an LD 90 PDT dose.

  15. Sudden infant death syndrome.

    PubMed

    Adams, Stephen M; Ward, Chad E; Garcia, Karla L

    2015-06-01

    Sudden infant death syndrome (SIDS) is the sudden unexpected death of a child younger than one year during sleep that cannot be explained after a postmortem evaluation including autopsy, a thorough history, and scene evaluation. The incidence of SIDS has decreased more than 50% in the past 20 years, largely as a result of the Back to Sleep campaign. The most important risk factors relate to the sleep environment. Prone and side sleeping positions are significantly more dangerous than the supine position. Bed sharing with a parent is strongly correlated with an increased risk of SIDS, especially in infants younger than 12 weeks. Apparent life-threatening events are not a risk factor for SIDS. Parents should place infants on their backs to sleep, should not share a bed, and should avoid exposing the infant to tobacco smoke. Other risk-reducing measures include using a firm crib mattress, breastfeeding, keeping vaccinations up to date, avoiding overheating due to overbundling, avoiding soft bedding, and considering the use of a pacifier during sleep once breastfeeding is established. One consequence of the Back to Sleep campaign is a significant increase in the incidence of occipital flattening. Infants who develop a flat spot should be placed with the head facing alternating directions each time he or she is put to bed. Supervised prone positioning while the infant is awake, avoiding excessive use of carriers, and upright positioning while awake are also recommended. PMID:26034855

  16. Defining senescence and death.

    PubMed

    Thomas, Howard; Ougham, Helen J; Wagstaff, Carol; Stead, Anthony D

    2003-04-01

    This article evaluates features of leaf and flower senescence that are shared with, or are different from, those of other terminal events in plant development. Alterations of plastid structure and function in senescence are often reversible and it is argued that such changes represent a process of transdifferentiation or metaplasia rather than deterioration. It may be that the irreversible senescence of many flowers and some leaves represents the loss of ancestral plasticity during evolution. Reversibility serves to distinguish senescence fundamentally from programmed cell death (PCD), as does the fact that viability is essential for the initiation and progress of cell senescence. Senescence (particularly its timing and location) requires new gene transcription, but the syndrome is also subject to significant post- transcriptional and post-translational regulation. The reversibility of senescence must relate to the plastic, facultative nature of underlying molecular controls. Senescence appears to be cell-autonomous, though definitive evidence is required to substantiate this. The vacuole plays at least three key roles in the development of senescing cells: it defends the cell against biotic and abiotic damage, thus preserving viability, it accumulates metabolites with other functions, such as animal attractants, and it terminates senescence by becoming autolytic and facilitating true cell death. The mechanisms of PCD in plants bear a certain relation to those of apoptosis, and some processes, such as nucleic acid degradation, are superficially similar to aspects of the senescence syndrome. It is concluded that, in terms of physiological components and their controls, senescence and PCD are at best only distantly related.

  17. Stressing mitosis to death.

    PubMed

    Burgess, Andrew; Rasouli, Mina; Rogers, Samuel

    2014-01-01

    The final stage of cell division (mitosis), involves the compaction of the duplicated genome into chromatid pairs. Each pair is captured by microtubules emanating from opposite spindle poles, aligned at the metaphase plate, and then faithfully segregated to form two identical daughter cells. Chromatids that are not correctly attached to the spindle are detected by the constitutively active spindle assembly checkpoint (SAC). Any stress that prevents correct bipolar spindle attachment, blocks the satisfaction of the SAC, and induces a prolonged mitotic arrest, providing the cell time to obtain attachment and complete segregation correctly. Unfortunately, during mitosis repairing damage is not generally possible due to the compaction of DNA into chromosomes, and subsequent suppression of gene transcription and translation. Therefore, in the presence of significant damage cell death is instigated to ensure that genomic stability is maintained. While most stresses lead to an arrest in mitosis, some promote premature mitotic exit, allowing cells to bypass mitotic cell death. This mini-review will focus on the effects and outcomes that common stresses have on mitosis, and how this impacts on the efficacy of mitotic chemotherapies. PMID:24926440

  18. Anticipatory Mechanisms in Evolutionary Living Systems

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dubois, Daniel M.; Holmberg, Stig C.

    2010-11-01

    This paper deals firstly with a revisiting of Darwin's theory of Natural Selection. Darwin in his book never uses the word "evolution", but shows a clear position about mutability of species. Darwin's Natural Selection was mainly inspired by the anticipatory Artificial Selection by humans in domestication, and the Malthus struggle for existence. Darwin showed that the struggle for existence leads to the preservation of the most divergent offspring of any one species. He cited several times the canon of "Natura non facit saltum". He spoke about the origin of life from some one primordial form, into which life was first breathed. Finally, Darwin made anticipation about the future researches in psychology. This paper cites the work of Ernst Mayr who was the first, after 90 years of an intense scientific debate, to present a new and stable Darwinian paradigm as the "Evolutionary Synthesis" in 1942. To explain what is life, the Living Systems Theory (LST) by J. G. Miller is presented. It is showed that the Autopoietic Systems Theory of Varela et al is also a fundamental component of living systems. In agreement with Darwin, the natural selection is a necessary condition for transformation of biological systems, but is not a sufficient condition. Thus, in this paper we conjecture that an anticipatory evolutionary mechanism exists with the genetic code that is a self-replicating and self-modifying anticipatory program. As demonstrated by Nobel laureate McClintock, evolution in genomes is programmed. The word "program" comes from "pro-gram" meaning to write before, by anticipation, and means a plan for the programming of a mechanism, or a sequence of coded instructions that can be inserted into a mechanism, or a sequence of coded instructions, as genes of behavioural responses, that is part of an organism. For example, cell death may be programmed by what is called the apoptosis. This definitively is a great breakthrough in our understanding of biological evolution. Hence

  19. Neuropeptide Y receptor gene y6: multiple deaths or resurrections?

    PubMed

    Starbäck, P; Wraith, A; Eriksson, H; Larhammar, D

    2000-10-14

    The neuropeptide Y family of G-protein-coupled receptors consists of five cloned members in mammals. Four genes give rise to functional receptors in all mammals investigated. The y6 gene is a pseudogene in human and pig and is absent in rat, but generates a functional receptor in rabbit and mouse and probably in the collared peccary (Pecari tajacu), a distant relative of the pig family. We report here that the guinea pig y6 gene has a highly distorted nucleotide sequence with multiple frame-shift mutations. One evolutionary scenario may suggest that y6 was inactivated before the divergence of the mammalian orders and subsequently resurrected in some lineages. However, the pseudogene mutations seem to be distinct in human, pig, and guinea pig, arguing for separate inactivation events. In either case, the y6 gene has a quite unusual evolutionary history with multiple independent deaths or resurrections.

  20. Behavior of chickens prior to death from sudden death syndrome.

    PubMed

    Newberry, R C; Gardiner, E E; Hunt, J R

    1987-09-01

    A study was made to determine if chickens dying from sudden death syndrome (SDS) showed any unusual behavioral characteristics during the final 12 h preceding death. Continuous video recordings were made of floor pens of 50 to 120 individually marked male broiler chickens between 3 and 10 wk of age. Behavioral data were obtained from video tapes played back following death of chickens from SDS. Analysis of the video tapes revealed no significant differences between 10 SDS chickens and their matched controls in the frequencies or proportions of time spent in each of 19 different behavioral activities. All SDS chickens exhibited a sudden attack prior to death lasting an average of 53 s and characterized by loss of balance, violent flapping, and strong muscular contractions. There was no evidence that death was preceded by a particular environmental or behavioral event. It was concluded that there were no consistent behavioral symptoms which could be used to identify SDS chickens prior to death. PMID:3684869

  1. Death Valley, California

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    1994-01-01

    This is an image of Death Valley, California, centered at 36.629 degrees north latitude, 117.069 degrees west longitude. The image shows Furnace Creek alluvial fan and Furnace Creek Ranch at the far right, and the sand dunes near Stove Pipe Wells at the center. The dark fork-shaped feature between Furnace Creek fan and the dunes is a smooth flood-plain which encloses Cottonball Basin. The bright dots near the center of the image are corner refectors that have been set-up to calibrate the radar as the Shuttle passes overhead with the SIR-C/X-SAR system. The Jet Propulsion Laboratory alternative photo number is P-43883.

  2. [Cancer treatment and death studies].

    PubMed

    Shimazono, Susumu

    2009-10-01

    In the West, death studies has become a new academic area since around 1970. The driving force is the hospice movement. People now ask questions such as how to care for dying people and their relatives. Because the main clients in hospice and palliative care are cancer patients, cancer treatment and death studies are closely linked to each other. The rise of death studies is connected with the awareness of the limits of modern medicine. Medical staffs are forced to learn how to care for those patients facing death. But modern medicine has put exclusive emphasis on biomedical treatment to cure. Contemporary medicine is becoming more and more aware of the psychological and spiritual needs of the patient. Today medicine and medical education have to incorporate the perspectives from death studies, learning how human beings facing death can live a better life not only in physical terms but also in psychological, social and spiritual terms.

  3. A primatological perspective on death.

    PubMed

    Anderson, James R

    2011-05-01

    Some questions that arise from observations of responses to dead and dying individuals by nonhuman primates are discussed, focusing on psychological issues. The phenomenon of transport and care of dead infants is reviewed, along with the consequences of the mother dying for orphaned offspring. It is argued that particular attention should be paid to how the context of a death affects individuals, for example, traumatic accidental or predation-induced death versus peaceful death following illness. Some primates kill others of their own or other species, which raises additional questions about death awareness and empathy. Observations from both the field and captivity can contribute toward a better understanding of the psychological meaning of death for primates. Some aspects of death awareness recognized by developmental psychologists might help guide research efforts in this area.

  4. Lethal mutagenesis and evolutionary epidemiology.

    PubMed

    Martin, Guillaume; Gandon, Sylvain

    2010-06-27

    The lethal mutagenesis hypothesis states that within-host populations of pathogens can be driven to extinction when the load of deleterious mutations is artificially increased with a mutagen, and becomes too high for the population to be maintained. Although chemical mutagens have been shown to lead to important reductions in viral titres for a wide variety of RNA viruses, the theoretical underpinnings of this process are still not clearly established. A few recent models sought to describe lethal mutagenesis but they often relied on restrictive assumptions. We extend this earlier work in two novel directions. First, we derive the dynamics of the genetic load in a multivariate Gaussian fitness landscape akin to classical quantitative genetics models. This fitness landscape yields a continuous distribution of mutation effects on fitness, ranging from deleterious to beneficial (i.e. compensatory) mutations. We also include an additional class of lethal mutations. Second, we couple this evolutionary model with an epidemiological model accounting for the within-host dynamics of the pathogen. We derive the epidemiological and evolutionary equilibrium of the system. At this equilibrium, the density of the pathogen is expected to decrease linearly with the genomic mutation rate U. We also provide a simple expression for the critical mutation rate leading to extinction. Stochastic simulations show that these predictions are accurate for a broad range of parameter values. As they depend on a small set of measurable epidemiological and evolutionary parameters, we used available information on several viruses to make quantitative and testable predictions on critical mutation rates. In the light of this model, we discuss the feasibility of lethal mutagenesis as an efficient therapeutic strategy.

  5. Evolutionary Constraints to Viroid Evolution

    PubMed Central

    Elena, Santiago F.; Gómez, Gustavo; Daròs, José-Antonio

    2009-01-01

    We suggest that viroids are trapped into adaptive peaks as the result of adaptive constraints. The first one is imposed by the necessity to fold into packed structures to escape from RNA silencing. This creates antagonistic epistases, which make future adaptive trajectories contingent upon the first mutation and slow down the rate of adaptation. This second constraint can only be surpassed by increasing genetic redundancy or by recombination. Eigen’s paradox imposes a limit to the increase in genome complexity in the absence of mechanisms reducing mutation rate. Therefore, recombination appears as the only possible route to evolutionary innovation in viroids. PMID:21994548

  6. Metabolism at evolutionary optimal States.

    PubMed

    Rabbers, Iraes; van Heerden, Johan H; Nordholt, Niclas; Bachmann, Herwig; Teusink, Bas; Bruggeman, Frank J

    2015-01-01

    Metabolism is generally required for cellular maintenance and for the generation of offspring under conditions that support growth. The rates, yields (efficiencies), adaptation time and robustness of metabolism are therefore key determinants of cellular fitness. For biotechnological applications and our understanding of the evolution of metabolism, it is necessary to figure out how the functional system properties of metabolism can be optimized, via adjustments of the kinetics and expression of enzymes, and by rewiring metabolism. The trade-offs that can occur during such optimizations then indicate fundamental limits to evolutionary innovations and bioengineering. In this paper, we review several theoretical and experimental findings about mechanisms for metabolic optimization. PMID:26042723

  7. Evolutionary shaping of demographic schedules

    PubMed Central

    Wachter, Kenneth W.; Steinsaltz, David; Evans, Steven N.

    2014-01-01

    Evolutionary processes of natural selection may be expected to leave their mark on age patterns of survival and reproduction. Demographic theory includes three main strands—mutation accumulation, stochastic vitality, and optimal life histories. This paper reviews the three strands and, concentrating on mutation accumulation, extends a mathematical result with broad implications concerning the effect of interactions between small age-specific effects of deleterious mutant alleles. Empirical data from genomic sequencing along with prospects for combining strands of theory hold hope for future progress. PMID:25024186

  8. The Evolutionary Biology of Poxviruses

    PubMed Central

    Hughes, Austin L.; Irausquin, Stephanie; Friedman, Robert

    2009-01-01

    The poxviruses (family Poxviridae) are a family of double-stranded viruses including several species that infect humans and their domestic animals, most notably Variola virus (VARV), the causative agent of smallpox. The evolutionary biology of these viruses poses numerous questions, for which we have only partial answers at present. Here we review evidence regarding the origin of poxviruses, the frequency of host transfer in poxvirus history, horizontal transfer of host genes to poxviruses, and the population processes accounting for patterns of nucleotide sequence polymorphism. PMID:19833230

  9. Policy folklists and evolutionary theory

    PubMed Central

    O’Neill, Barry

    2014-01-01

    Policy folklists present a set of alleged historical facts seen as relevant to some social issue. Although the validity of these folklists is dubious, leaders and writers circulate them in the media, variants arise, and the lists continue on, sometimes for decades. Folklists are repeated because their messages are appealing and their users are credible. Because folklists are on the record, we can examine their origins and changes. This report draws an analogy with evolutionary theory and suggests that biological mechanisms of self-repair, boundary maintenance, plasticity, speciation, and predation have significant interpretations for folklists, and clarify how the lists win the credence of otherwise skeptical people. PMID:25024210

  10. Metabolism at Evolutionary Optimal States

    PubMed Central

    Rabbers, Iraes; van Heerden, Johan H.; Nordholt, Niclas; Bachmann, Herwig; Teusink, Bas; Bruggeman, Frank J.

    2015-01-01

    Metabolism is generally required for cellular maintenance and for the generation of offspring under conditions that support growth. The rates, yields (efficiencies), adaptation time and robustness of metabolism are therefore key determinants of cellular fitness. For biotechnological applications and our understanding of the evolution of metabolism, it is necessary to figure out how the functional system properties of metabolism can be optimized, via adjustments of the kinetics and expression of enzymes, and by rewiring metabolism. The trade-offs that can occur during such optimizations then indicate fundamental limits to evolutionary innovations and bioengineering. In this paper, we review several theoretical and experimental findings about mechanisms for metabolic optimization. PMID:26042723

  11. Introduced species as evolutionary traps

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Schlaepfer, Martin A.; Sherman, P.W.; Blossey, B.; Runge, M.C.

    2005-01-01

    Invasive species can alter environments in such a way that normal behavioural decision-making rules of native species are no longer adaptive. The evolutionary trap concept provides a useful framework for predicting and managing the impact of harmful invasive species. We discuss how native species can respond to changes in their selective regime via evolution or learning. We also propose novel management strategies to promote the long-term co-existence of native and introduced species in cases where the eradication of the latter is either economically or biologically unrealistic.

  12. Historical change and evolutionary theory.

    PubMed

    Masters, Roger D

    2007-09-01

    Despite advances in fields like genetics, evolutionary psychology, and human behavior and evolution--which generally focus on individual or small group behavior from a biological perspective--evolutionary biology has made little impact on studies of political change and social history. Theories of natural selection often seem inapplicable to human history because our social behavior is embedded in language (which makes possible the concepts of time and social identity on which what we call "history" depends). Peter Corning's Holistic Darwinism reconceptualizes evolutionary biology, making it possible to go beyond the barriers separating the social and natural sciences. Corning focuses on two primary processes: "synergy" (complex multivariate interactions at multiple levels between a species and its environment) and "cybernetics" (the information systems permitting communication between individuals and groups over time). Combining this frame of reference with inclusive fitness theory, it is possible to answer the most important (and puzzling) question in human history: How did a species that lived for millennia in hunter-gatherer bands form centralized states governing large populations of non-kin (including multi-ethnic empires as well as modern nation-states)? The fragility and contemporary ethnic violence in Kenya and the Congo should suffice as evidence that these issues need to be taken seriously. To explain the rise and fall of states as well as changes in human laws and customs--the core of historical research--it is essential to show how the provision of collective goods can overcome the challenge of self-interest and free-riding in some instances, yet fail to do so in others. To this end, it is now possible to consider how a state providing public goods can--under circumstances that often include effective leadership--contribute to enhanced inclusive fitness of virtually all its members. Because social behavior needs to adapt to ecology, but ecological

  13. Historical change and evolutionary theory.

    PubMed

    Masters, Roger D

    2007-09-01

    Despite advances in fields like genetics, evolutionary psychology, and human behavior and evolution--which generally focus on individual or small group behavior from a biological perspective--evolutionary biology has made little impact on studies of political change and social history. Theories of natural selection often seem inapplicable to human history because our social behavior is embedded in language (which makes possible the concepts of time and social identity on which what we call "history" depends). Peter Corning's Holistic Darwinism reconceptualizes evolutionary biology, making it possible to go beyond the barriers separating the social and natural sciences. Corning focuses on two primary processes: "synergy" (complex multivariate interactions at multiple levels between a species and its environment) and "cybernetics" (the information systems permitting communication between individuals and groups over time). Combining this frame of reference with inclusive fitness theory, it is possible to answer the most important (and puzzling) question in human history: How did a species that lived for millennia in hunter-gatherer bands form centralized states governing large populations of non-kin (including multi-ethnic empires as well as modern nation-states)? The fragility and contemporary ethnic violence in Kenya and the Congo should suffice as evidence that these issues need to be taken seriously. To explain the rise and fall of states as well as changes in human laws and customs--the core of historical research--it is essential to show how the provision of collective goods can overcome the challenge of self-interest and free-riding in some instances, yet fail to do so in others. To this end, it is now possible to consider how a state providing public goods can--under circumstances that often include effective leadership--contribute to enhanced inclusive fitness of virtually all its members. Because social behavior needs to adapt to ecology, but ecological

  14. Evolutionary dynamics on interdependent populations

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gómez-Gardeñes, Jesús; Gracia-Lázaro, Carlos; Floría, Luis Mario; Moreno, Yamir

    2012-11-01

    Although several mechanisms can promote cooperative behavior, there is no general consensus about why cooperation survives when the most profitable action for an individual is to defect, especially when the population is well mixed. Here we show that when a replicator such as evolutionary game dynamics takes place on interdependent networks, cooperative behavior is fixed on the system. Remarkably, we analytically and numerically show that this is even the case for well-mixed populations. Our results open the path to mechanisms able to sustain cooperation and can provide hints for controlling its rise and fall in a variety of biological and social systems.

  15. [Genetics of sudden unexplained death].

    PubMed

    Campuzano, Oscar; Allegue, Catarina; Brugada, Ramon

    2014-03-20

    Sudden unexplained death is defined by death without a conclusive diagnosis after autopsy and it is responsible for a large percentage of sudden deaths. The progressive interaction between genetics and forensics in post-mortem studies has identified inheritable alterations responsible for pathologies associated with arrhythmic sudden death. The genetic diagnosis of the deceased enables the undertaking of preventive measures in family members, many of them asymptomatic but at risk. The implications of this multidisciplinary translational medical approach are complex, requiring the dedication of a specialized team.

  16. Programmed cell death in neurodevelopment.

    PubMed

    Yamaguchi, Yoshifumi; Miura, Masayuki

    2015-02-23

    Programmed cell death (PCD) is an evolutionarily conserved contributor to nervous system development. In the vertebrate peripheral nervous system, PCD is the basis of the neurotrophic theory, whereby cell death results from a surplus of neurons relative to target and competition for neurotrophic factors. In addition to stochastic cell death, PCD can be intrinsically determined by cell lineage or position and timing in both invertebrate and vertebrate central nervous systems. The underlying PCD molecular mechanisms include intrinsic transcription factor cascades and regulators of competence/susceptibility to cell death. Here, we provide a framework for understanding neural PCD from its regulation to its functions.

  17. Deaths of amateur scuba divers.

    PubMed

    Obafunwa, J O; Busuttil, A; Purdue, B

    1994-04-01

    Four scuba diving deaths investigated by the Forensic Medicine Unit, University of Edinburgh Medical School, are reported. The pathological investigation of such deaths requires that a detailed history of the events prior to death is obtained and that the site of the accident is fully examined with underwater photographic recording where possible. The diving suits, breathing apparatus and other diving accessories also have to be examined carefully by experts and a complete autopsy with toxicological and histological examination is essential. The causes and mechanisms of death are discussed, as are the importance of special autopsy techniques and investigations. Possible interpretative problems are highlighted.

  18. [The need for death education].

    PubMed

    Deeken, A

    1992-08-01

    "Death Education" is at the same time "Life Education." For many years I have endeavored to create an awareness of the need for death education in Japan. In this paper I would like to stress the necessity of death education for the following three groups. 1. For medical personnel. Three objectives of death education: 1) Learn to understand the fears and anxieties of the patients facing death and try to reduce their excessive fears and anxieties. 2) Familiarize yourself with the ethical issues related to terminal care and try to establish a warm relationship based on trust and continue communication with the dying patient till the end. 2. For patients. 1) Be aware that the time of your life is limited and try to discover the preciousness of the remaining time. Meditate on the uniqueness of your own death. 2) Finish your unfinished business, reevaluate your human relationships and benefit from a life review therapy. 3) Remove the taboo on death, arrange your own funeral and consider the possibility of another life after death. 3. For the patient's family and friends. 1) Continue warm communication with the dying patient till the end. 2) Prepare for your own bereavement and grief. 3) Try to make your own grief process an opportunity for personal growth. When a cure is no longer possible for a dying patient, the focus of our endeavors should be loving care of the person. Death education can help us to provide better terminal care during the final stage of life.

  19. The death of a person.

    PubMed

    Hershenov, David B

    2006-04-01

    Drawing upon Lynne Baker's idea of the person derivatively possessing the properties of a constituting organism, I argue that even if persons aren't identical to living organisms, they can each literally die a biological death. Thus we can accept that we're not essentially organisms and can still die without having to admit that there are two concepts and criteria of death as Jeff McMahan and Robert Veatch do. Furthermore, we can accept James Bernat's definition of "death" without having to insist, as he does, that persons are identical to organisms or that persons can only die metaphorical deaths.

  20. [Genetics of sudden unexplained death].

    PubMed

    Campuzano, Oscar; Allegue, Catarina; Brugada, Ramon

    2014-03-20

    Sudden unexplained death is defined by death without a conclusive diagnosis after autopsy and it is responsible for a large percentage of sudden deaths. The progressive interaction between genetics and forensics in post-mortem studies has identified inheritable alterations responsible for pathologies associated with arrhythmic sudden death. The genetic diagnosis of the deceased enables the undertaking of preventive measures in family members, many of them asymptomatic but at risk. The implications of this multidisciplinary translational medical approach are complex, requiring the dedication of a specialized team. PMID:24018251

  1. Genes from scratch--the evolutionary fate of de novo genes.

    PubMed

    Schlötterer, Christian

    2015-04-01

    Although considered an extremely unlikely event, many genes emerge from previously noncoding genomic regions. This review covers the entire life cycle of such de novo genes. Two competing hypotheses about the process of de novo gene birth are discussed as well as the high death rate of de novo genes. Despite the high death rate, some de novo genes are retained and remain functional, even in distantly related species, through their integration into gene networks. Further studies combining gene expression with ribosome profiling in multiple populations across different species will be instrumental for an improved understanding of the evolutionary processes operating on de novo genes.

  2. Death Attitudes among Mid-Life Women.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Richardson, Virginia; Sands, Roberta

    1987-01-01

    Examined death attitudes among 74 female college reentry students aged 30 through 49. Found relationships between: (1) developmental factors and death concern, death as interpersonal loss, and death as dimension of time; (2) age and death anticipation; and (3) income and death denial. Results suggest importance of considering both developmental…

  3. Programmed Death in Bacteria

    PubMed Central

    Lewis, Kim

    2000-01-01

    Programmed cell death (PCD) in bacteria plays an important role in developmental processes, such as lysis of the mother cell during sporulation of Bacillus subtilis and lysis of vegetative cells in fruiting body formation of Myxococcus xanthus. The signal transduction pathway leading to autolysis of the mother cell includes the terminal sporulation sigma factor EςK, which induces the synthesis of autolysins CwlC and CwlH. An activator of autolysin in this and other PCD processes is yet to be identified. Autolysis plays a role in genetic exchange in Streptococcus pneumoniae, and the gene for the major autolysin, lytA, is located in the same operon with recA. DNA from lysed cells is picked up by their neighbors and recombined into the chromosome by RecA. LytA requires an unknown activator controlled by a sensory kinase, VncS. Deletion of vncS inhibits autolysis and also decreases killing by unrelated antibiotics. This observation suggests that PCD in bacteria serves to eliminate damaged cells, similar to apoptosis of defective cells in metazoa. The presence of genes affecting survival without changing growth sensitivity to antibiotics (vncS, lytA, hipAB, sulA, and mar) indicates that bacteria are able to control their fate. Elimination of defective cells could limit the spread of a viral infection and donate nutrients to healthy kin cells. An altruistic suicide would be challenged by the appearance of asocial mutants without PCD and by the possibility of maladaptive total suicide in response to a uniformly present lethal factor or nutrient depletion. It is proposed that a low rate of mutation serves to decrease the probability that asocial mutants without PCD will take over the population. It is suggested that PCD is disabled in persistors, rare cells that are resistant to killing, to ensure population survival. It is suggested that lack of nutrients leads to the stringent response that suppresses PCD, producing a state of tolerance to antibiotics, allowing cells to

  4. Conceptual Barriers to Progress Within Evolutionary Biology.

    PubMed

    Laland, Kevin N; Odling-Smee, John; Feldman, Marcus W; Kendal, Jeremy

    2009-08-01

    In spite of its success, Neo-Darwinism is faced with major conceptual barriers to further progress, deriving directly from its metaphysical foundations. Most importantly, neo-Darwinism fails to recognize a fundamental cause of evolutionary change, "niche construction". This failure restricts the generality of evolutionary theory, and introduces inaccuracies. It also hinders the integration of evolutionary biology with neighbouring disciplines, including ecosystem ecology, developmental biology, and the human sciences. Ecology is forced to become a divided discipline, developmental biology is stubbornly difficult to reconcile with evolutionary theory, and the majority of biologists and social scientists are still unhappy with evolutionary accounts of human behaviour. The incorporation of niche construction as both a cause and a product of evolution removes these disciplinary boundaries while greatly generalizing the explanatory power of evolutionary theory.

  5. The Evolving Theory of Evolutionary Radiations.

    PubMed

    Simões, M; Breitkreuz, L; Alvarado, M; Baca, S; Cooper, J C; Heins, L; Herzog, K; Lieberman, B S

    2016-01-01

    Evolutionary radiations have intrigued biologists for more than 100 years, and our understanding of the patterns and processes associated with these radiations continues to grow and evolve. Recently it has been recognized that there are many different types of evolutionary radiation beyond the well-studied adaptive radiations. We focus here on multifarious types of evolutionary radiations, paying special attention to the abiotic factors that might trigger diversification in clades. We integrate concepts such as exaptation, species selection, coevolution, and the turnover-pulse hypothesis (TPH) into the theoretical framework of evolutionary radiations. We also discuss other phenomena that are related to, but distinct from, evolutionary radiations that have relevance for evolutionary biology. PMID:26632984

  6. Expressing death risk as condensed life experience and death intensity.

    PubMed

    Ioannidis, John P A

    2013-08-01

    Some risk exposures, including many medical and surgical procedures, typically carry hazards of death that are difficult to convey and appreciate in absolute terms. I propose presenting the death risk as a condensed life experience (i.e., the equivalent amount of life T that would carry the same cumulative mortality hazard for a person of the same age and sex based on life tables). For example, if the risk of death during an elective 1-hour procedure is 0.01%, and same-age and same-sex people have a 0.01% death risk over 1 month, one can inform the patient that "this procedure carries the same death risk as living 1 month of normal life." Comparative standards from other risky activities or from a person with the same disease at the same stage and same predictive profile could also be used. A complementary metric that may be useful to consider is the death intensity. The death intensity λ is the hazard function that shows the fold-risk estimate of dying compared with the reference person. The death intensity can vary substantially for different phases of the event, operation, or procedure (e.g., intraoperative, early postoperative, late postoperative), and this variability may also be useful to convey. T will vary depending on the time window for which it is computed. I present examples for calculating T and λ using literature data on accidents, ascent to Mount Everest, and medical and surgical procedures.

  7. History of brain death as death: 1968 to the present.

    PubMed

    De Georgia, Michael A

    2014-08-01

    The concept of brain death was formulated in 1968 in the landmark report A Definition of Irreversible Coma. While brain death has been widely accepted as a determination of death throughout the world, many of the controversies that surround it have not been settled. Some may be rooted in a misconstruction about the history of brain death. The concept evolved as a result of the convergence of several parallel developments in the second half of the 20th century including advances in resuscitation and critical care, research into the underlying physiology of consciousness, and growing concerns about technology, medical futility, and the ethics of end of life care. Organ transplantation also developed in parallel, and though it clearly benefited from a new definition of death, it was not a principal driving force in its creation. Since 1968, the concept of brain death has been extensively analyzed, debated, and reworked. Still there remains much misunderstanding and confusion, especially in the general public. In this comprehensive review, I will trace the evolution of the definition of brain death as death from 1968 to the present, providing background, history and context. PMID:24930367

  8. History of brain death as death: 1968 to the present.

    PubMed

    De Georgia, Michael A

    2014-08-01

    The concept of brain death was formulated in 1968 in the landmark report A Definition of Irreversible Coma. While brain death has been widely accepted as a determination of death throughout the world, many of the controversies that surround it have not been settled. Some may be rooted in a misconstruction about the history of brain death. The concept evolved as a result of the convergence of several parallel developments in the second half of the 20th century including advances in resuscitation and critical care, research into the underlying physiology of consciousness, and growing concerns about technology, medical futility, and the ethics of end of life care. Organ transplantation also developed in parallel, and though it clearly benefited from a new definition of death, it was not a principal driving force in its creation. Since 1968, the concept of brain death has been extensively analyzed, debated, and reworked. Still there remains much misunderstanding and confusion, especially in the general public. In this comprehensive review, I will trace the evolution of the definition of brain death as death from 1968 to the present, providing background, history and context.

  9. Language as an evolutionary system

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Brighton, Henry; Smith, Kenny; Kirby, Simon

    2005-09-01

    John Maynard Smith and Eörs Szathmáry argued that human language signified the eighth major transition in evolution: human language marked a new form of information transmission from one generation to another [Maynard Smith J, Szathmáry E. The major transitions in evolution. Oxford: Oxford Univ. Press; 1995]. According to this view language codes cultural information and as such forms the basis for the evolution of complexity in human culture. In this article we develop the theory that language also codes information in another sense: languages code information on their own structure. As a result, languages themselves provide information that influences their own survival. To understand the consequences of this theory we discuss recent computational models of linguistic evolution. Linguistic evolution is the process by which languages themselves evolve. This article draws together this recent work on linguistic evolution and highlights the significance of this process in understanding the evolution of linguistic complexity. Our conclusions are that: (1) the process of linguistic transmission constitutes the basis for an evolutionary system, and (2), that this evolutionary system is only superficially comparable to the process of biological evolution.

  10. The Evolutionary Puzzle of Suicide

    PubMed Central

    Aubin, Henri-Jean; Berlin, Ivan; Kornreich, Charles

    2013-01-01

    Mechanisms of self-destruction are difficult to reconcile with evolution’s first rule of thumb: survive and reproduce. However, evolutionary success ultimately depends on inclusive fitness. The altruistic suicide hypothesis posits that the presence of low reproductive potential and burdensomeness toward kin can increase the inclusive fitness payoff of self-removal. The bargaining hypothesis assumes that suicide attempts could function as an honest signal of need. The payoff may be positive if the suicidal person has a low reproductive potential. The parasite manipulation hypothesis is founded on the rodent—Toxoplasma gondii host-parasite model, in which the parasite induces a “suicidal” feline attraction that allows the parasite to complete its life cycle. Interestingly, latent infection by T. gondii has been shown to cause behavioral alterations in humans, including increased suicide attempts. Finally, we discuss how suicide risk factors can be understood as nonadaptive byproducts of evolved mechanisms that malfunction. Although most of the mechanisms proposed in this article are largely speculative, the hypotheses that we raise accept self-destructive behavior within the framework of evolutionary theory. PMID:24351787

  11. Evolutionary dynamics on random structures

    SciTech Connect

    Fraser, S.M.; Reidys, C.M. |

    1997-04-01

    In this paper the authors consider the evolutionary dynamics of populations of sequences, under a process of selection at the phenotypic level of structures. They use a simple graph-theoretic representation of structures which captures well the properties of the mapping between RNA sequences and their molecular structure. Each sequence is assigned to a structure by means of a sequence-to-structure mapping. The authors make the basic assumption that every fitness landscape can be factorized through the structures. The set of all sequences that map into a particular random structure can then be modeled as a random graph in sequence space, the so-called neutral network. They analyze in detail how an evolving population searches for new structures, in particular how they switch from one neutral network to another. They verify that transitions occur directly between neutral networks, and study the effects of different population sizes and the influence of the relatedness of the structures on these transitions. In fitness landscapes where several structures exhibit high fitness, the authors then study evolutionary paths on the structural level taken by the population during its search. They present a new way of expressing structural similarities which are shown to have relevant implications for the time evolution of the population.

  12. Exploration dynamics in evolutionary games.

    PubMed

    Traulsen, Arne; Hauert, Christoph; De Silva, Hannelore; Nowak, Martin A; Sigmund, Karl

    2009-01-20

    Evolutionary game theory describes systems where individual success is based on the interaction with others. We consider a system in which players unconditionally imitate more successful strategies but sometimes also explore the available strategies at random. Most research has focused on how strategies spread via genetic reproduction or cultural imitation, but random exploration of the available set of strategies has received less attention so far. In genetic settings, the latter corresponds to mutations in the DNA, whereas in cultural evolution, it describes individuals experimenting with new behaviors. Genetic mutations typically occur with very small probabilities, but random exploration of available strategies in behavioral experiments is common. We term this phenomenon "exploration dynamics" to contrast it with the traditional focus on imitation. As an illustrative example of the emerging evolutionary dynamics, we consider a public goods game with cooperators and defectors and add punishers and the option to abstain from the enterprise in further scenarios. For small mutation rates, cooperation (and punishment) is possible only if interactions are voluntary, whereas moderate mutation rates can lead to high levels of cooperation even in compulsory public goods games. This phenomenon is investigated through numerical simulations and analytical approximations.

  13. Behavior Trees for Evolutionary Robotics.

    PubMed

    Scheper, Kirk Y W; Tijmons, Sjoerd; de Visser, Cornelis C; de Croon, Guido C H E

    2016-01-01

    Evolutionary Robotics allows robots with limited sensors and processing to tackle complex tasks by means of sensory-motor coordination. In this article we show the first application of the Behavior Tree framework on a real robotic platform using the evolutionary robotics methodology. This framework is used to improve the intelligibility of the emergent robotic behavior over that of the traditional neural network formulation. As a result, the behavior is easier to comprehend and manually adapt when crossing the reality gap from simulation to reality. This functionality is shown by performing real-world flight tests with the 20-g DelFly Explorer flapping wing micro air vehicle equipped with a 4-g onboard stereo vision system. The experiments show that the DelFly can fully autonomously search for and fly through a window with only its onboard sensors and processing. The success rate of the optimized behavior in simulation is 88%, and the corresponding real-world performance is 54% after user adaptation. Although this leaves room for improvement, it is higher than the 46% success rate from a tuned user-defined controller. PMID:26606468

  14. Behavior Trees for Evolutionary Robotics.

    PubMed

    Scheper, Kirk Y W; Tijmons, Sjoerd; de Visser, Cornelis C; de Croon, Guido C H E

    2016-01-01

    Evolutionary Robotics allows robots with limited sensors and processing to tackle complex tasks by means of sensory-motor coordination. In this article we show the first application of the Behavior Tree framework on a real robotic platform using the evolutionary robotics methodology. This framework is used to improve the intelligibility of the emergent robotic behavior over that of the traditional neural network formulation. As a result, the behavior is easier to comprehend and manually adapt when crossing the reality gap from simulation to reality. This functionality is shown by performing real-world flight tests with the 20-g DelFly Explorer flapping wing micro air vehicle equipped with a 4-g onboard stereo vision system. The experiments show that the DelFly can fully autonomously search for and fly through a window with only its onboard sensors and processing. The success rate of the optimized behavior in simulation is 88%, and the corresponding real-world performance is 54% after user adaptation. Although this leaves room for improvement, it is higher than the 46% success rate from a tuned user-defined controller.

  15. Physical foundations of evolutionary theory

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Annila, Arto; Salthe, Stanley

    2010-10-01

    The theory of evolution by natural selection is herein subsumed by the 2nd law of thermodynamics. The mathematical form of evolutionary theory is based on a re-examination of the probability concept that underlies statistical physics. Probability regarded as physical must include, in addition to isoenergic combinatorial configurations, also energy in conditional circumstances. Consequently, entropy as an additive logarithmic probability measure is found to be a function of the free energy, and the process toward the maximum entropy state is found equivalent to evolution toward the free energy minimum in accordance with the basic maxim of chemical thermodynamics. The principle of increasing entropy when given as an equation of motion reveals that expansion, proliferation, differentiation, diversification, and catalysis are all ways for a system to evolve toward the stationary state in its respective surroundings. Intriguingly, the equation of evolution cannot be solved when there remain degrees of freedom to consume the free energy, and hence evolutionary trajectories of a non-Hamiltonian system remain intractable. Finally, when to-and-from flows of energy are balanced between a system and its surroundings, the system is at the Lyapunov-stable stationary state. The principle of maximal energy dispersal, equivalent to the maximal rate of entropy production, gives rise to the ubiquitous characteristics, conventions, and regularities found in nature, where thermodynamics makes no demarcation line between animate and inanimate.

  16. Evolutionary expansion of the Monogenea.

    PubMed

    Kearn, G C

    1994-12-01

    The evolutionary expansion of the monogeneans has taken place in parallel with the diversification of the fish-like vertebrates. In this article the main trends in monogenean evolution are traced from a hypothetical skin-parasitic ancestor on early vertebrates. Special consideration is given to the following topics: early divergence between skin feeders and blood feeders; diversification and specialization of the haptor for attachment to skin; transfer from host to host, viviparity and the success of the gyrodactylids; predation on skin parasites and camouflage; colonization of the buccal and branchial cavities; diversification and specialization of the haptor for attachment to the gills; phoresy in gill parasites; the development of endoparasitism and the origin of the cestodes; the success of dactylogyroidean gill parasites; the uniqueness of the polyopisthocotyleans; ovoviviparity and the colonization of the tetrapods. Host specificity has been the guiding force of coevolution between monogeneans and their vertebrate hosts, but the establishment of monogeneans on unrelated hosts sharing the same environment (host-switching) may have been underestimated. Host-switching has provided significant opportunities for evolutionary change of direction and is probably responsible for the establishment of monogeneans on cephalopod molluscs, on the hippopotamus and possibly on chelonians. There are indications that host-switching may be more common in monogeneans that spread by direct transfer of adults/juveniles from host to host. A limitation on the further expansion of monogeneans is the need for water for the dispersal of the infective larva (oncomiracidium).

  17. Measuring Evolutionary Isolation for Conservation.

    PubMed

    Redding, David W; Mazel, Florent; Mooers, Arne Ø

    2014-01-01

    Conservation planning needs to account for limited resources when choosing those species on which to focus attention and resources. Currently, funding is biased to small sections of the tree of life, such as raptors and carnivores. One new approach for increasing the diversity of species under consideration considers how many close relatives a species has in its evolutionary tree. At least eleven different ways to measure this characteristic on phylogenies for the purposes of setting species-specific priorities for conservation have been proposed. We find that there is much redundancy within the current set, with three pairs of metrics being essentially identical. Non-redundant metrics represent different trade-offs between the unique evolutionary history represented by a species verses its average distance to all other species. Depending on which metric is used, species priority lists can differ as much as 85% for the top 100 species. We call for some consensus on the theory behind these metrics and suggest that all future developments are compared to the current published set, and offer scripts to aid such comparisons.

  18. Evolutionary potential games on lattices

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Szabó, György; Borsos, István

    2016-04-01

    Game theory provides a general mathematical background to study the effect of pair interactions and evolutionary rules on the macroscopic behavior of multi-player games where players with a finite number of strategies may represent a wide scale of biological objects, human individuals, or even their associations. In these systems the interactions are characterized by matrices that can be decomposed into elementary matrices (games) and classified into four types. The concept of decomposition helps the identification of potential games and also the evaluation of the potential that plays a crucial role in the determination of the preferred Nash equilibrium, and defines the Boltzmann distribution towards which these systems evolve for suitable types of dynamical rules. This survey draws parallel between the potential games and the kinetic Ising type models which are investigated for a wide scale of connectivity structures. We discuss briefly the applicability of the tools and concepts of statistical physics and thermodynamics. Additionally the general features of ordering phenomena, phase transitions and slow relaxations are outlined and applied to evolutionary games. The discussion extends to games with three or more strategies. Finally we discuss what happens when the system is weakly driven out of the "equilibrium state" by adding non-potential components representing games of cyclic dominance.

  19. [Evolutionary endocrinology: a pending matter].

    PubMed

    Zafón, Carles

    2012-01-01

    Twenty years have passed since the foundational article of what is now known as evolutionary medicine (EM) was published. This young medical discipline examines, following Darwinian principles, susceptibility to certain diseases and how we react to them. In short, EM analyzes the final cause of the disease from a historical perspective. Over the years, EM has been introduced in various medical areas in very different ways. While it has found a role in some fields such as infectious diseases and oncology, its contribution in other areas has been quite limited. In endocrinology, EM has only gained prominence as a basis for the so-called "diseases of civilization", including diabetes mellitus and obesity. However, many experts suggest that it may have a much higher potential. The aim of this paper is to provide a view about what evolutionary medicine is. Some examples of how EM may contribute to progress of our specialty are also given. There is no doubt that evolution enriches medicine, but medicine also offers knowledge to evolution. PMID:22113050

  20. Evolutionary development of tensegrity structures.

    PubMed

    Lobo, Daniel; Vico, Francisco J

    2010-09-01

    Contributions from the emerging fields of molecular genetics and evo-devo (evolutionary developmental biology) are greatly benefiting the field of evolutionary computation, initiating a promise of renewal in the traditional methodology. While direct encoding has constituted a dominant paradigm, indirect ways to encode the solutions have been reported, yet little attention has been paid to the benefits of the proposed methods to real problems. In this work, we study the biological properties that emerge by means of using indirect encodings in the context of form-finding problems. A novel indirect encoding model for artificial development has been defined and applied to an engineering structural-design problem, specifically to the discovery of tensegrity structures. This model has been compared with a direct encoding scheme. While the direct encoding performs similarly well to the proposed method, indirect-based results typically outperform the direct-based results in aspects not directly linked to the nature of the problem itself, but to the emergence of properties found in biological organisms, like organicity, generalization capacity, or modularity aspects which are highly valuable in engineering. PMID:20619314

  1. The evolutionary puzzle of suicide.

    PubMed

    Aubin, Henri-Jean; Berlin, Ivan; Kornreich, Charles

    2013-12-09

    Mechanisms of self-destruction are difficult to reconcile with evolution's first rule of thumb: survive and reproduce. However, evolutionary success ultimately depends on inclusive fitness. The altruistic suicide hypothesis posits that the presence of low reproductive potential and burdensomeness toward kin can increase the inclusive fitness payoff of self-removal. The bargaining hypothesis assumes that suicide attempts could function as an honest signal of need. The payoff may be positive if the suicidal person has a low reproductive potential. The parasite manipulation hypothesis is founded on the rodent-Toxoplasma gondii host-parasite model, in which the parasite induces a "suicidal" feline attraction that allows the parasite to complete its life cycle. Interestingly, latent infection by T. gondii has been shown to cause behavioral alterations in humans, including increased suicide attempts. Finally, we discuss how suicide risk factors can be understood as nonadaptive byproducts of evolved mechanisms that malfunction. Although most of the mechanisms proposed in this article are largely speculative, the hypotheses that we raise accept self-destructive behavior within the framework of evolutionary theory.

  2. Exploration dynamics in evolutionary games.

    PubMed

    Traulsen, Arne; Hauert, Christoph; De Silva, Hannelore; Nowak, Martin A; Sigmund, Karl

    2009-01-20

    Evolutionary game theory describes systems where individual success is based on the interaction with others. We consider a system in which players unconditionally imitate more successful strategies but sometimes also explore the available strategies at random. Most research has focused on how strategies spread via genetic reproduction or cultural imitation, but random exploration of the available set of strategies has received less attention so far. In genetic settings, the latter corresponds to mutations in the DNA, whereas in cultural evolution, it describes individuals experimenting with new behaviors. Genetic mutations typically occur with very small probabilities, but random exploration of available strategies in behavioral experiments is common. We term this phenomenon "exploration dynamics" to contrast it with the traditional focus on imitation. As an illustrative example of the emerging evolutionary dynamics, we consider a public goods game with cooperators and defectors and add punishers and the option to abstain from the enterprise in further scenarios. For small mutation rates, cooperation (and punishment) is possible only if interactions are voluntary, whereas moderate mutation rates can lead to high levels of cooperation even in compulsory public goods games. This phenomenon is investigated through numerical simulations and analytical approximations. PMID:19124771

  3. Major evolutionary transitions in individuality

    PubMed Central

    West, Stuart A.; Fisher, Roberta M.; Gardner, Andy; Kiers, E. Toby

    2015-01-01

    The evolution of life on earth has been driven by a small number of major evolutionary transitions. These transitions have been characterized by individuals that could previously replicate independently, cooperating to form a new, more complex life form. For example, archaea and eubacteria formed eukaryotic cells, and cells formed multicellular organisms. However, not all cooperative groups are en route to major transitions. How can we explain why major evolutionary transitions have or haven’t taken place on different branches of the tree of life? We break down major transitions into two steps: the formation of a cooperative group and the transformation of that group into an integrated entity. We show how these steps require cooperation, division of labor, communication, mutual dependence, and negligible within-group conflict. We find that certain ecological conditions and the ways in which groups form have played recurrent roles in driving multiple transitions. In contrast, we find that other factors have played relatively minor roles at many key points, such as within-group kin discrimination and mechanisms to actively repress competition. More generally, by identifying the small number of factors that have driven major transitions, we provide a simpler and more unified description of how life on earth has evolved. PMID:25964342

  4. DED: Database of Evolutionary Distances.

    PubMed

    Veeramachaneni, Vamsi; Makalowski, Wojciech

    2005-01-01

    A large database of homologous sequence alignments with good estimates of evolutionary distances can be a valuable resource for molecular evolutionary studies and phylogenetic research in particular. We recently created a database containing 159,921 transcripts from human, mouse, rat, zebrafish and fugu species. Approximately 1,000 homology groups were identified with the help of Ensembl homology evidence. At the macro-level, the database allows us to answer queries of the form: 1. What is the average k-distance between 5' untranslated regions of human and mouse? 2. List the 10 groups with the highest K(a)/K(s) ratio between mouse and rat. 3. List all identical proteins between human and rat. Researchers interested in specific proteins can use a simple web interface to retrieve the homology groups of interest, examine all pairwise distances between members of the group and study the conservation of exon-intron gene structures using a graphical interface. The database is available at http://warta.bio.psu.edu/DED/.

  5. Evolutionary development of tensegrity structures.

    PubMed

    Lobo, Daniel; Vico, Francisco J

    2010-09-01

    Contributions from the emerging fields of molecular genetics and evo-devo (evolutionary developmental biology) are greatly benefiting the field of evolutionary computation, initiating a promise of renewal in the traditional methodology. While direct encoding has constituted a dominant paradigm, indirect ways to encode the solutions have been reported, yet little attention has been paid to the benefits of the proposed methods to real problems. In this work, we study the biological properties that emerge by means of using indirect encodings in the context of form-finding problems. A novel indirect encoding model for artificial development has been defined and applied to an engineering structural-design problem, specifically to the discovery of tensegrity structures. This model has been compared with a direct encoding scheme. While the direct encoding performs similarly well to the proposed method, indirect-based results typically outperform the direct-based results in aspects not directly linked to the nature of the problem itself, but to the emergence of properties found in biological organisms, like organicity, generalization capacity, or modularity aspects which are highly valuable in engineering.

  6. An introduction to evolutionary developmental psychology.

    PubMed

    Machluf, Karin; Liddle, James R; Bjorklund, David F

    2014-04-29

    Evolutionary developmental psychology represents a synthesis of modern evolutionary theory and developmental psychology. Here we introduce the special issue on evolutionary developmental psychology by briefly discussing the history of this field and then summarizing the variety of topics that are covered. In this special issue, leading researchers provide a collection of theoretical and empirical articles that highlight recent findings and propose promising areas for future research.

  7. [Near-death experiences].

    PubMed

    Bonilla, Ernesto

    2011-03-01

    Near-death experiences (NDE) are lucid events that take place when a person is so physically compromised that he would die if its condition does not improve. He is unconscious, without heartbeats and breath, and with a flat-line electroencephalogram. NDE may include some of the following elements: Out of the body experiences or separation of consciousness from the physical body, increase in sensory perception and intense emotions, travel into or through a tunnel, encounter with a brilliant light and mystical beings, deceased relatives or friends, a sense of alteration in time and space, visualization of unworldly realms and a special knowledge, encounter with a barrier or boundary, and a return to the body, either voluntary or involuntary. The fact that children NDE are similar to adult NDE is an evidence that these experiences are real and not due to pre-existing beliefs, cultural influences or previous experiences in the present life. The characteristics of NDE are similar worldwide. No evidence supports the physiological, psychological, neurochemical, and neuroanatomical hypothesis proposed to explain the NDE. Multifactorial models, based on the combination of all of them (brain anoxia or hypoxia, release of serotonin, endorphins and ketamine-like compounds) have also been proposed. Although physiological, psychological, and socio-cultural factors could interact in the NDE, the hypothesis proposed consist essentially in unsupported speculations about what might be happening during the NDE.

  8. Evolutionary psychology: its programs, prospects, and pitfalls.

    PubMed

    Neher, Andrew

    2006-01-01

    The emerging specialty of evolutionary psychology presents a challenge to mainstream psychology. It proposes that cognitive, notjust more fundamental, traits in humans are grounded in dedicated evolutionary programs. Specifically, it maintains that the common assumption in psychology-that the complexities of our psyches have been largely freed from evolutionary constraints and are instead based in a general learning capacity-is mistaken. The major premises of evolutionary psychology are examined in light of arguments and evidence presented by both supporters and detractors. Although some of these premises are well grounded, others are questionable and limit the development of the specialty and its integration into mainstream psychology.

  9. An introduction to comparative evolutionary psychology.

    PubMed

    Vonk, Jennifer; Shackelford, Todd K

    2013-07-18

    Previously we (Vonk and Shackelford, 2012, in press) proposed an integration of comparative psychology and evolutionary psychology into a new field of "comparative evolutionary psychology." This integrative discipline incorporates principles from ethology, ecology, biology, anthropology, and psychology, broadly defined. We present in this special issue a collection of original empirical and theoretical review articles in which leading researchers propose ways to successfully integrate comparative and evolutionary approaches within their particular areas of study. We showcase the key contributions of these articles and highlight several empirical and theoretical challenges, as well as key future directions, for comparative evolutionary psychology.

  10. Child murder by parents and evolutionary psychology.

    PubMed

    Friedman, Susan Hatters; Cavney, James; Resnick, Phillip J

    2012-12-01

    This article explores the contribution of evolutionary theory to the understanding of causation and motive in filicide cases and also reviews special issues in the forensic evaluation of alleged perpetrators of filicide. Evolutionary social psychology seeks to understand the context in which our brains evolved, to understand human behaviors. The authors propose evolutionary theory as a framework theory to meaningfully appreciate research about filicide. Using evolutionary psychology as a theoretical lens, this article reviews the research on filicide over the past 40 years, and describes epidemiologic and typologic studies of filicide, and theoretical analyses from a range of disciplines.

  11. Child murder by parents and evolutionary psychology.

    PubMed

    Friedman, Susan Hatters; Cavney, James; Resnick, Phillip J

    2012-12-01

    This article explores the contribution of evolutionary theory to the understanding of causation and motive in filicide cases and also reviews special issues in the forensic evaluation of alleged perpetrators of filicide. Evolutionary social psychology seeks to understand the context in which our brains evolved, to understand human behaviors. The authors propose evolutionary theory as a framework theory to meaningfully appreciate research about filicide. Using evolutionary psychology as a theoretical lens, this article reviews the research on filicide over the past 40 years, and describes epidemiologic and typologic studies of filicide, and theoretical analyses from a range of disciplines. PMID:23107563

  12. Evolutionary triangulation: informing genetic association studies with evolutionary evidence.

    PubMed

    Huang, Minjun; Graham, Britney E; Zhang, Ge; Harder, Reed; Kodaman, Nuri; Moore, Jason H; Muglia, Louis; Williams, Scott M

    2016-01-01

    Genetic studies of human diseases have identified many variants associated with pathogenesis and severity. However, most studies have used only statistical association to assess putative relationships to disease, and ignored other factors for evaluation. For example, evolution is a factor that has shaped disease risk, changing allele frequencies as human populations migrated into and inhabited new environments. Since many common variants differ among populations in frequency, as does disease prevalence, we hypothesized that patterns of disease and population structure, taken together, will inform association studies. Thus, the population distributions of allelic risk variants should reflect the distributions of their associated diseases. Evolutionary Triangulation (ET) exploits this evolutionary differentiation by comparing population structure among three populations with variable patterns of disease prevalence. By selecting populations based on patterns where two have similar rates of disease that differ substantially from a third, we performed a proof of principle analysis for this method. We examined three disease phenotypes, lactase persistence, melanoma, and Type 2 diabetes mellitus. We show that for lactase persistence, a phenotype with a simple genetic architecture, ET identifies the key gene, lactase. For melanoma, ET identifies several genes associated with this disease and/or phenotypes related to it, such as skin color genes. ET was less obviously successful for Type 2 diabetes mellitus, perhaps because of the small effect sizes in known risk loci and recent environmental changes that have altered disease risk. Alternatively, ET may have revealed new genes involved in conferring disease risk for diabetes that did not meet nominal GWAS significance thresholds. We also compared ET to another method used to filter for phenotype associated genes, population branch statistic (PBS), and show that ET performs better in identifying genes known to associate with

  13. Evolutionary triangulation: informing genetic association studies with evolutionary evidence.

    PubMed

    Huang, Minjun; Graham, Britney E; Zhang, Ge; Harder, Reed; Kodaman, Nuri; Moore, Jason H; Muglia, Louis; Williams, Scott M

    2016-01-01

    Genetic studies of human diseases have identified many variants associated with pathogenesis and severity. However, most studies have used only statistical association to assess putative relationships to disease, and ignored other factors for evaluation. For example, evolution is a factor that has shaped disease risk, changing allele frequencies as human populations migrated into and inhabited new environments. Since many common variants differ among populations in frequency, as does disease prevalence, we hypothesized that patterns of disease and population structure, taken together, will inform association studies. Thus, the population distributions of allelic risk variants should reflect the distributions of their associated diseases. Evolutionary Triangulation (ET) exploits this evolutionary differentiation by comparing population structure among three populations with variable patterns of disease prevalence. By selecting populations based on patterns where two have similar rates of disease that differ substantially from a third, we performed a proof of principle analysis for this method. We examined three disease phenotypes, lactase persistence, melanoma, and Type 2 diabetes mellitus. We show that for lactase persistence, a phenotype with a simple genetic architecture, ET identifies the key gene, lactase. For melanoma, ET identifies several genes associated with this disease and/or phenotypes related to it, such as skin color genes. ET was less obviously successful for Type 2 diabetes mellitus, perhaps because of the small effect sizes in known risk loci and recent environmental changes that have altered disease risk. Alternatively, ET may have revealed new genes involved in conferring disease risk for diabetes that did not meet nominal GWAS significance thresholds. We also compared ET to another method used to filter for phenotype associated genes, population branch statistic (PBS), and show that ET performs better in identifying genes known to associate with

  14. Death Competence: An Ethical Imperative

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Gamino, Louis A.; Ritter, R. Hal, Jr.

    2012-01-01

    The authors argued that death competence, defined as specialized skill in tolerating and managing clients' problems related to dying, death, and bereavement, is a necessary prerequisite for ethical practice in grief counseling. A selected review of the literature tracing the underpinnings of this concept reveals how a robust construct of death…

  15. Death Outlook and Social Issues.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Feifel, Herman; Schag, Daniel

    1980-01-01

    Examined the hypothesis that there is a relationship between outlook on death and orientation toward mercy killing, abortion, suicide, and euthanasia. Some relationships between death attitudes and perspectives on the social issues emphasized the need to consider specific circumstances as well as abstract concepts. (Author)

  16. Parthanatos, a messenger of death.

    PubMed

    David, Karen Kate; Andrabi, Shaida Ahmad; Dawson, Ted Murray; Dawson, Valina Lynn

    2009-01-01

    Poly-ADP-ribose polymerase-1 (PARP-1)'s roles in the cell span from maintaining life to inducing death. The processes PARP-1 is involved in include DNA repair, DNA transcription, mitosis, and cell death. Of PARP-1's different cellular functions, its role in cell death is of particular interest to designing therapies for diseases. Genetic deletion of PARP-1 revealed that PARP-1 overactivation underlies cell death in models of stroke, diabetes, inflammation and neurodegeneration. Since interfering with PARP-1 mediated cell death will be clinically beneficial, great effort has been invested into understanding mechanisms downstream of PARP-1 overactivation. Recent evidence shows that poly-ADP ribose (PAR) polymer itself can act as a cell death effector downstream of PARP-1. We coined the term parthanatos after Thanatos, the personification of death in Greek mythology, to refer to PAR-mediated cell death. In this review, we will present evidence and questions raised by these recent findings, and summarize the proposed mechanisms by which PARP-1 overactivation kills. It is evident that further understanding of parthanatos opens up new avenues for therapy in ameliorating diseases related to PARP-1 overactivation. PMID:19273119

  17. Death: A Part of Life.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Otero, George G.; Harris, Zoanne

    This two-part curriculum unit includes 20 slides depicting Days of the Dead in Mexico and the United States. The unit is designed to help middle school students compare customs and practices associated with death throughout the world in a way that promotes understanding of the values and needs that produce and are reinforced by death rituals and…

  18. Decoding cell death signals in liver inflammation.

    PubMed

    Brenner, Catherine; Galluzzi, Lorenzo; Kepp, Oliver; Kroemer, Guido

    2013-09-01

    Inflammation can be either beneficial or detrimental to the liver, depending on multiple factors. Mild (i.e., limited in intensity and destined to resolve) inflammatory responses have indeed been shown to exert consistent hepatoprotective effects, contributing to tissue repair and promoting the re-establishment of homeostasis. Conversely, excessive (i.e., disproportionate in intensity and permanent) inflammation may induce a massive loss of hepatocytes and hence exacerbate the severity of various hepatic conditions, including ischemia-reperfusion injury, systemic metabolic alterations (e.g., obesity, diabetes, non-alcoholic fatty liver disorders), alcoholic hepatitis, intoxication by xenobiotics and infection, de facto being associated with irreversible liver damage, fibrosis, and carcinogenesis. Both liver-resident cells (e.g., Kupffer cells, hepatic stellate cells, sinusoidal endothelial cells) and cells that are recruited in response to injury (e.g., monocytes, macrophages, dendritic cells, natural killer cells) emit pro-inflammatory signals including - but not limited to - cytokines, chemokines, lipid messengers, and reactive oxygen species that contribute to the apoptotic or necrotic demise of hepatocytes. In turn, dying hepatocytes release damage-associated molecular patterns that-upon binding to evolutionary conserved pattern recognition receptors-activate cells of the innate immune system to further stimulate inflammatory responses, hence establishing a highly hepatotoxic feedforward cycle of inflammation and cell death. In this review, we discuss the cellular and molecular mechanisms that account for the most deleterious effect of hepatic inflammation at the cellular level, that is, the initiation of a massive cell death response among hepatocytes. PMID:23567086

  19. Uniformity in brain death criteria.

    PubMed

    Shemie, Sam D; Baker, Andrew

    2015-04-01

    Despite well-described international variabilities in brain death practices, de facto there already exists a minimum international clinical standard for the diagnosis of brain death. This remains rooted in the Harvard criteria and based on the characteristics of a permanently nonfunctioning brain. Medicine is evolving toward a single unified determination of death based on the cessation of brain function subsequent to catastrophic brain injury or circulatory arrest. Clarity in lexicon could be established, including movement toward functional definitions and away from anatomically based terms such as cardiac and brain death that erroneously imply death of the organ. The cessation of clinical functions of the brain that will not resume is determined by the absence of capacity for consciousness, centrally mediated motor responses, brainstem reflexes, and capacity to breathe. A known proximate cause and the absence of confounding or reversible conditions must be confirmed. Regional medical, legal, cultural, religious, or socioeconomic factors may require testing beyond this minimal clinical standard. PMID:25839725

  20. When Brain Death Belies Belief.

    PubMed

    Yanke, Greg; Rady, Mohamed Y; Verheijde, Joseph L

    2016-12-01

    The case of Jahi McMath has reignited a discussion concerning how society should define death. Despite pronouncing McMath brain dead based on the American Academy of Neurology criteria, the court ordered continued mechanical ventilation to accommodate the family's religious beliefs. Recent case law suggests that the potential for a successful challenge to the neurologic criteria of death provisions of the Uniform Determination of Death Act are greater than ever in the majority of states that have passed religious freedom legislation. As well, because standard ethical claims regarding brain death are either patently untrue or subject to legitimate dispute, those whose beliefs do not comport with the brain death standard should be able to reject it. PMID:27541016

  1. Scalable computing for evolutionary genomics.

    PubMed

    Prins, Pjotr; Belhachemi, Dominique; Möller, Steffen; Smant, Geert

    2012-01-01

    Genomic data analysis in evolutionary biology is becoming so computationally intensive that analysis of multiple hypotheses and scenarios takes too long on a single desktop computer. In this chapter, we discuss techniques for scaling computations through parallelization of calculations, after giving a quick overview of advanced programming techniques. Unfortunately, parallel programming is difficult and requires special software design. The alternative, especially attractive for legacy software, is to introduce poor man's parallelization by running whole programs in parallel as separate processes, using job schedulers. Such pipelines are often deployed on bioinformatics computer clusters. Recent advances in PC virtualization have made it possible to run a full computer operating system, with all of its installed software, on top of another operating system, inside a "box," or virtual machine (VM). Such a VM can flexibly be deployed on multiple computers, in a local network, e.g., on existing desktop PCs, and even in the Cloud, to create a "virtual" computer cluster. Many bioinformatics applications in evolutionary biology can be run in parallel, running processes in one or more VMs. Here, we show how a ready-made bioinformatics VM image, named BioNode, effectively creates a computing cluster, and pipeline, in a few steps. This allows researchers to scale-up computations from their desktop, using available hardware, anytime it is required. BioNode is based on Debian Linux and can run on networked PCs and in the Cloud. Over 200 bioinformatics and statistical software packages, of interest to evolutionary biology, are included, such as PAML, Muscle, MAFFT, MrBayes, and BLAST. Most of these software packages are maintained through the Debian Med project. In addition, BioNode contains convenient configuration scripts for parallelizing bioinformatics software. Where Debian Med encourages packaging free and open source bioinformatics software through one central project

  2. Scalable computing for evolutionary genomics.

    PubMed

    Prins, Pjotr; Belhachemi, Dominique; Möller, Steffen; Smant, Geert

    2012-01-01

    Genomic data analysis in evolutionary biology is becoming so computationally intensive that analysis of multiple hypotheses and scenarios takes too long on a single desktop computer. In this chapter, we discuss techniques for scaling computations through parallelization of calculations, after giving a quick overview of advanced programming techniques. Unfortunately, parallel programming is difficult and requires special software design. The alternative, especially attractive for legacy software, is to introduce poor man's parallelization by running whole programs in parallel as separate processes, using job schedulers. Such pipelines are often deployed on bioinformatics computer clusters. Recent advances in PC virtualization have made it possible to run a full computer operating system, with all of its installed software, on top of another operating system, inside a "box," or virtual machine (VM). Such a VM can flexibly be deployed on multiple computers, in a local network, e.g., on existing desktop PCs, and even in the Cloud, to create a "virtual" computer cluster. Many bioinformatics applications in evolutionary biology can be run in parallel, running processes in one or more VMs. Here, we show how a ready-made bioinformatics VM image, named BioNode, effectively creates a computing cluster, and pipeline, in a few steps. This allows researchers to scale-up computations from their desktop, using available hardware, anytime it is required. BioNode is based on Debian Linux and can run on networked PCs and in the Cloud. Over 200 bioinformatics and statistical software packages, of interest to evolutionary biology, are included, such as PAML, Muscle, MAFFT, MrBayes, and BLAST. Most of these software packages are maintained through the Debian Med project. In addition, BioNode contains convenient configuration scripts for parallelizing bioinformatics software. Where Debian Med encourages packaging free and open source bioinformatics software through one central project

  3. Facility Death Review of Maternal and Neonatal Deaths in Bangladesh

    PubMed Central

    Biswas, Animesh; Rahman, Fazlur; Eriksson, Charli; Halim, Abdul; Dalal, Koustuv

    2015-01-01

    Objectives To explore the experiences, acceptance, and effects of conducting facility death review (FDR) of maternal and neonatal deaths and stillbirths at or below the district level in Bangladesh. Methods This was a qualitative study with healthcare providers involved in FDRs. Two districts were studied: Thakurgaon district (a pilot district) and Jamalpur district (randomly selected from three follow-on study districts). Data were collected between January and November 2011. Data were collected from focus group discussions, in-depth interviews, and document review. Hospital administrators, obstetrics and gynecology consultants, and pediatric consultants and nurses employed in the same departments of the respective facilities participated in the study. Content and thematic analyses were performed. Results FDR for maternal and neonatal deaths and stillbirths can be performed in upazila health complexes at sub-district and district hospital levels. Senior staff nurses took responsibility for notifying each death and conducting death reviews with the support of doctors. Doctors reviewed the FDRs to assign causes of death. Review meetings with doctors, nurses, and health managers at the upazila and district levels supported the preparation of remedial action plans based on FDR findings, and interventions were planned accordingly. There were excellent examples of improved quality of care at facilities as a result of FDR. FDR also identified gaps and challenges to overcome in the near future to improve maternal and newborn health. Discussion FDR of maternal and neonatal deaths is feasible in district and upazila health facilities. FDR not only identifies the medical causes of a maternal or neonatal death but also explores remediable gaps and challenges in the facility. FDR creates an enabled environment in the facility to explore medical causes of deaths, including the gaps and challenges that influence mortality. FDRs mobilize health managers at upazila and district

  4. Sudden natural death masquerading as accidental death - a case report.

    PubMed

    Praveen, S; Kamath, Sulatha; Usha, M; Akshith

    2015-03-01

    Things are not always what they seem at first sight. One should always be on the watch for more than presents itself as the main issue in the investigation of crime. Whenever a person dies at the scene of accident, it is inferred that the accident caused the death. But that does not mean that the inference is correct. A person who was suspected to have met with a road traffic accident after autopsy turned out to be a case of sudden natural death due to acute haemorrhagic pancreatitis. The case is reported as it is of medico-legal interest because a natural death appeared to be due to a traffic accident.

  5. Evolutionary Adaptations to Dietary Changes

    PubMed Central

    Luca, F.; Perry, G.H.; Di Rienzo, A.

    2014-01-01

    Through cultural innovation and changes in habitat and ecology, there have been a number of major dietary shifts in human evolution, including meat eating, cooking, and those associated with plant and animal domestication. The identification of signatures of adaptations to such dietary changes in the genome of extant primates (including humans) may shed light not only on the evolutionary history of our species, but also on the mechanisms that underlie common metabolic diseases in modern human populations. In this review, we provide a brief overview of the major dietary shifts that occurred during hominin evolution, and we discuss the methods and approaches used to identify signals of natural selection in patterns of sequence variation. We then review the results of studies aimed at detecting the genetic loci that played a major role in dietary adaptations and conclude by outlining the potential of future studies in this area. PMID:20420525

  6. Alcoholism's evolutionary and cultural origins.

    PubMed

    Abel, Ernest L

    2010-12-01

    Alcoholism's heritability has been convincingly documented but the question of why a disorder that is so damaging to the individual and to society should continue to persist is still baffling. A widely held assumption is that whatever genotype is involved, its components must originally have conferred survival value else it would never have evolved. The corollary to that assumption is that when conditions favoring that genotype changed, the former advantages became detrimental. However, the genotype has persisted because it does not affect sexual function, if at all, until after peak productive years. An appreciation of the evolutionary biology and the historical-cultural context associated with alcohol consumption may lead not only to a better understanding of this disorder but to treatment alternatives based on that understanding.

  7. The evolutionary origins of friendship.

    PubMed

    Seyfarth, Robert M; Cheney, Dorothy L

    2012-01-01

    Convergent evidence from many species reveals the evolutionary origins of human friendship. In horses, elephants, hyenas, dolphins, monkeys, and chimpanzees, some individuals form friendships that last for years. Bonds occur among females, among males, or between males and females. Genetic relatedness affects friendships. In species where males disperse, friendships are more likely among females. If females disperse, friendships are more likely among males. Not all friendships, however, depend on kinship; many are formed between unrelated individuals. Friendships often involve cooperative interactions that are separated in time. They depend, at least in part, on the memory and emotions associated with past interactions. Applying the term "friendship" to animals is not anthropomorphic: Many studies have shown that the animals themselves recognize others' relationships. Friendships are adaptive. Male allies have superior competitive ability and improved reproductive success; females with the strongest, most enduring friendships experience less stress, higher infant survival, and live longer. PMID:21740224

  8. Evolutionary Industrial Physical Model Generation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Carrascal, Alberto; Alberdi, Amaia

    Both complexity and lack of knowledge associated to physical processes makes physical models design an arduous task. Frequently, the only available information about the physical processes are the heuristic data obtained from experiments or at best a rough idea on what are the physical principles and laws that underlie considered physical processes. Then the problem is converted to find a mathematical expression which fits data. There exist traditional approaches to tackle the inductive model search process from data, such as regression, interpolation, finite element method, etc. Nevertheless, these methods either are only able to solve a reduced number of simple model typologies, or the given black-box solution does not contribute to clarify the analyzed physical process. In this paper a hybrid evolutionary approach to search complex physical models is proposed. Tests carried out on a real-world industrial physical process (abrasive water jet machining) demonstrate the validity of this approach.

  9. Bacterial Actins? An Evolutionary Perspective

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Doolittle, Russell F.; York, Amanda L.

    2003-01-01

    According to the conventional wisdom, the existence of a cytoskeleton in eukaryotes and its absence in prokaryotes constitute a fundamental divide between the two domains of life. An integral part of the dogma is that a cytoskeleton enabled an early eukaryote to feed upon prokaryotes, a consequence of which was the occasional endosymbiosis and the eventual evolution of organelles. Two recent papers present compelling evidence that actin, one of the principal components of a cytoskeleton, has a homolog in Bacteria that behaves in many ways like eukaryotic actin. Sequence comparisons reveml that eukaryotic actin and the bacterial homolog (mreB protein), unlike many other proteins common to eukaryotes and Bacteria, have very different and more highly extended evolutionary histories.

  10. Genomic clocks and evolutionary timescales

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Blair Hedges, S.; Kumar, Sudhir

    2003-01-01

    For decades, molecular clocks have helped to illuminate the evolutionary timescale of life, but now genomic data pose a challenge for time estimation methods. It is unclear how to integrate data from many genes, each potentially evolving under a different model of substitution and at a different rate. Current methods can be grouped by the way the data are handled (genes considered separately or combined into a 'supergene') and the way gene-specific rate models are applied (global versus local clock). There are advantages and disadvantages to each of these approaches, and the optimal method has not yet emerged. Fortunately, time estimates inferred using many genes or proteins have greater precision and appear to be robust to different approaches.

  11. EPR: an Advanced Evolutionary Design

    SciTech Connect

    Czech, Juergen; Bouteille, Francois; Hudson, Greg

    2004-07-01

    This paper presents the main features of the EPR, an evolutionary design product that builds on French N4 plants (Chooz and Civaux) and Konvoi, the most recent reactor series built in Germany. This Franco-German project was driven by a common French and German desire to cooperate in several areas. In January 2001, Framatome SA and Siemens AG merged their nuclear activities to form Framatome ANP with three regional entities in France, Germany and the USA. The recent decision of Teollisuuden Voima Oy (TVO) to select the EPR for construction in Olkiluoto of the fifth Nuclear Power Plant in Finland gave a new impetus to the project. Framatome ANP is committed to put the FOAK EPR in commercial operation on May 1, 2009. This challenging time schedule will set a new reference for 'Generation III +' LWR's. (authors)

  12. Evolutionary adaptations to dietary changes.

    PubMed

    Luca, F; Perry, G H; Di Rienzo, A

    2010-08-21

    Through cultural innovation and changes in habitat and ecology, there have been a number of major dietary shifts in human evolution, including meat eating, cooking, and those associated with plant and animal domestication. The identification of signatures of adaptations to such dietary changes in the genome of extant primates (including humans) may shed light not only on the evolutionary history of our species, but also on the mechanisms that underlie common metabolic diseases in modern human populations. In this review, we provide a brief overview of the major dietary shifts that occurred during hominin evolution, and we discuss the methods and approaches used to identify signals of natural selection in patterns of sequence variation. We then review the results of studies aimed at detecting the genetic loci that played a major role in dietary adaptations and conclude by outlining the potential of future studies in this area. PMID:20420525

  13. Evolutionary genomics of dog domestication.

    PubMed

    Wayne, Robert K; vonHoldt, Bridgett M

    2012-02-01

    We review the underlying principles and tools used in genomic studies of domestic dogs aimed at understanding the genetic changes that have occurred during domestication. We show that there are two principle modes of evolution within dogs. One primary mode that accounts for much of the remarkable diversity of dog breeds is the fixation of discrete mutations of large effect in individual lineages that are then crossed to various breed groupings. This transfer of mutations across the dog evolutionary tree leads to the appearance of high phenotypic diversity that in actuality reflects a small number of major genes. A second mechanism causing diversification involves the selective breeding of dogs within distinct phenotypic or functional groups, which enhances specific group attributes such as heading or tracking. Such progressive selection leads to a distinct genetic structure in evolutionary trees such that functional and phenotypic groups cluster genetically. We trace the origin of the nuclear genome in dogs based on haplotype-sharing analyses between dogs and gray wolves and show that contrary to previous mtDNA analyses, the nuclear genome of dogs derives primarily from Middle Eastern or European wolves, a result more consistent with the archeological record. Sequencing analysis of the IGF1 gene, which has been the target of size selection in small breeds, further supports this conclusion. Finally, we discuss how a black coat color mutation that evolved in dogs has transformed North American gray wolf populations, providing a first example of a mutation that appeared under domestication and selectively swept through a wild relative. PMID:22270221

  14. Evolutionary History of Tissue Kallikreins

    PubMed Central

    Pavlopoulou, Athanasia; Pampalakis, Georgios; Michalopoulos, Ioannis; Sotiropoulou, Georgia

    2010-01-01

    The gene family of human kallikrein-related peptidases (KLKs) encodes proteins with diverse and pleiotropic functions in normal physiology as well as in disease states. Currently, the most widely known KLK is KLK3 or prostate-specific antigen (PSA) that has applications in clinical diagnosis and monitoring of prostate cancer. The KLK gene family encompasses the largest contiguous cluster of serine proteases in humans which is not interrupted by non-KLK genes. This exceptional and unique characteristic of KLKs makes them ideal for evolutionary studies aiming to infer the direction and timing of gene duplication events. Previous studies on the evolution of KLKs were restricted to mammals and the emergence of KLKs was suggested about 150 million years ago (mya). In order to elucidate the evolutionary history of KLKs, we performed comprehensive phylogenetic analyses of KLK homologous proteins in multiple genomes including those that have been completed recently. Interestingly, we were able to identify novel reptilian, avian and amphibian KLK members which allowed us to trace the emergence of KLKs 330 mya. We suggest that a series of duplication and mutation events gave rise to the KLK gene family. The prominent feature of the KLK family is that it consists of tandemly and uninterruptedly arrayed genes in all species under investigation. The chromosomal co-localization in a single cluster distinguishes KLKs from trypsin and other trypsin-like proteases which are spread in different genetic loci. All the defining features of the KLKs were further found to be conserved in the novel KLK protein sequences. The study of this unique family will further assist in selecting new model organisms for functional studies of proteolytic pathways involving KLKs. PMID:21072173

  15. Evolutionary history of exon shuffling.

    PubMed

    França, Gustavo S; Cancherini, Douglas V; de Souza, Sandro J

    2012-06-01

    Exon shuffling has been characterized as one of the major evolutionary forces shaping both the genome and the proteome of eukaryotes. This mechanism was particularly important in the creation of multidomain proteins during animal evolution, bringing a number of functional genetic novelties. Here, genome information from a variety of eukaryotic species was used to address several issues related to the evolutionary history of exon shuffling. By comparing all protein sequences within each species, we were able to characterize exon shuffling signatures throughout metazoans. Intron phase (the position of the intron regarding the codon) and exon symmetry (the pattern of flanking introns for a given exon or block of adjacent exons) were features used to evaluate exon shuffling. We confirmed previous observations that exon shuffling mediated by phase 1 introns (1-1 exon shuffling) is the predominant kind in multicellular animals. Evidence is provided that such pattern was achieved since the early steps of animal evolution, supported by a detectable presence of 1-1 shuffling units in Trichoplax adhaerens and a considerable prevalence of them in Nematostella vectensis. In contrast, Monosiga brevicollis, one of the closest relatives of metazoans, and Arabidopsis thaliana, showed no evidence of 1-1 exon or domain shuffling above what it would be expected by chance. Instead, exon shuffling events are less abundant and predominantly mediated by phase 0 introns (0-0 exon shuffling) in those non-metazoan species. Moreover, an intermediate pattern of 1-1 and 0-0 exon shuffling was observed for the placozoan T. adhaerens, a primitive animal. Finally, characterization of flanking intron phases around domain borders allowed us to identify a common set of symmetric 1-1 domains that have been shuffled throughout the metazoan lineage.

  16. Evolutionary principles and their practical application

    PubMed Central

    Hendry, Andrew P; Kinnison, Michael T; Heino, Mikko; Day, Troy; Smith, Thomas B; Fitt, Gary; Bergstrom, Carl T; Oakeshott, John; Jørgensen, Peter S; Zalucki, Myron P; Gilchrist, George; Southerton, Simon; Sih, Andrew; Strauss, Sharon; Denison, Robert F; Carroll, Scott P

    2011-01-01

    Evolutionary principles are now routinely incorporated into medicine and agriculture. Examples include the design of treatments that slow the evolution of resistance by weeds, pests, and pathogens, and the design of breeding programs that maximize crop yield or quality. Evolutionary principles are also increasingly incorporated into conservation biology, natural resource management, and environmental science. Examples include the protection of small and isolated populations from inbreeding depression, the identification of key traits involved in adaptation to climate change, the design of harvesting regimes that minimize unwanted life-history evolution, and the setting of conservation priorities based on populations, species, or communities that harbor the greatest evolutionary diversity and potential. The adoption of evolutionary principles has proceeded somewhat independently in these different fields, even though the underlying fundamental concepts are the same. We explore these fundamental concepts under four main themes: variation, selection, connectivity, and eco-evolutionary dynamics. Within each theme, we present several key evolutionary principles and illustrate their use in addressing applied problems. We hope that the resulting primer of evolutionary concepts and their practical utility helps to advance a unified multidisciplinary field of applied evolutionary biology. PMID:25567966

  17. Toward a unifying framework for evolutionary processes

    PubMed Central

    Paixão, Tiago; Badkobeh, Golnaz; Barton, Nick; Çörüş, Doğan; Dang, Duc-Cuong; Friedrich, Tobias; Lehre, Per Kristian; Sudholt, Dirk; Sutton, Andrew M.; Trubenová, Barbora

    2015-01-01

    The theory of population genetics and evolutionary computation have been evolving separately for nearly 30 years. Many results have been independently obtained in both fields and many others are unique to its respective field. We aim to bridge this gap by developing a unifying framework for evolutionary processes that allows both evolutionary algorithms and population genetics models to be cast in the same formal framework. The framework we present here decomposes the evolutionary process into its several components in order to facilitate the identification of similarities between different models. In particular, we propose a classification of evolutionary operators based on the defining properties of the different components. We cast several commonly used operators from both fields into this common framework. Using this, we map different evolutionary and genetic algorithms to different evolutionary regimes and identify candidates with the most potential for the translation of results between the fields. This provides a unified description of evolutionary processes and represents a stepping stone towards new tools and results to both fields. PMID:26215686

  18. Oversimplifying Evolutionary Psychology Leads to Explanatory Gaps

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Tate, Chuck; Ledbetter, Jay N.

    2010-01-01

    Comments on Evolutionary psychology: Controversies, questions, prospects, and limitations by Confer et al. They argued that SST cannot explain the existence of either homosexuality or suicide within the human species. We contend that a sufficiently nuanced evolutionary position has no difficulties explaining either phenomenon. Also in this…

  19. Evolutionary Biology in the Medical School Curriculum.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Neese, Randolph M.; Schiffman, Joshua D.

    2003-01-01

    Presents a study in which a questionnaire was given to deans at North American medical schools to determine which aspects of evolutionary biology are included in the curricula and the factors that influence this. Suggests that most future physicians should learn evolutionary biology as undergraduates if they are to learn it at all. (Author/NB)

  20. Algorithmic Mechanism Design of Evolutionary Computation

    PubMed Central

    Pei, Yan

    2015-01-01

    We consider algorithmic design, enhancement, and improvement of evolutionary computation as a mechanism design problem. All individuals or several groups of individuals can be considered as self-interested agents. The individuals in evolutionary computation can manipulate parameter settings and operations by satisfying their own preferences, which are defined by an evolutionary computation algorithm designer, rather than by following a fixed algorithm rule. Evolutionary computation algorithm designers or self-adaptive methods should construct proper rules and mechanisms for all agents (individuals) to conduct their evolution behaviour correctly in order to definitely achieve the desired and preset objective(s). As a case study, we propose a formal framework on parameter setting, strategy selection, and algorithmic design of evolutionary computation by considering the Nash strategy equilibrium of a mechanism design in the search process. The evaluation results present the efficiency of the framework. This primary principle can be implemented in any evolutionary computation algorithm that needs to consider strategy selection issues in its optimization process. The final objective of our work is to solve evolutionary computation design as an algorithmic mechanism design problem and establish its fundamental aspect by taking this perspective. This paper is the first step towards achieving this objective by implementing a strategy equilibrium solution (such as Nash equilibrium) in evolutionary computation algorithm. PMID:26257777

  1. Evolutionary principles and their practical application.

    PubMed

    Hendry, Andrew P; Kinnison, Michael T; Heino, Mikko; Day, Troy; Smith, Thomas B; Fitt, Gary; Bergstrom, Carl T; Oakeshott, John; Jørgensen, Peter S; Zalucki, Myron P; Gilchrist, George; Southerton, Simon; Sih, Andrew; Strauss, Sharon; Denison, Robert F; Carroll, Scott P

    2011-03-01

    Evolutionary principles are now routinely incorporated into medicine and agriculture. Examples include the design of treatments that slow the evolution of resistance by weeds, pests, and pathogens, and the design of breeding programs that maximize crop yield or quality. Evolutionary principles are also increasingly incorporated into conservation biology, natural resource management, and environmental science. Examples include the protection of small and isolated populations from inbreeding depression, the identification of key traits involved in adaptation to climate change, the design of harvesting regimes that minimize unwanted life-history evolution, and the setting of conservation priorities based on populations, species, or communities that harbor the greatest evolutionary diversity and potential. The adoption of evolutionary principles has proceeded somewhat independently in these different fields, even though the underlying fundamental concepts are the same. We explore these fundamental concepts under four main themes: variation, selection, connectivity, and eco-evolutionary dynamics. Within each theme, we present several key evolutionary principles and illustrate their use in addressing applied problems. We hope that the resulting primer of evolutionary concepts and their practical utility helps to advance a unified multidisciplinary field of applied evolutionary biology.

  2. [Current concepts on sudden death].

    PubMed

    Asensio, Enrique; Narváez, René; Dorantes, Joel; Oseguera, Jorge; Orea, Arturo; Hernández, PabloR; Rebollar, Verónica; Mont, Lluís; Brugada, Josep

    2005-01-01

    Sudden death is defined as the death occurring less than one hour before the onset of the patient's symptoms. It is a severe condition considered a public health issue in several countries and in ours, it accounts for 33 000 to 53 000 annual deaths mainly related to ischemic heart disease. The main cause of sudden death are severe ventricular arrhythmias, but determining what patients are at risk for such an episode is complex, that is why risk stratification is usually a low cost-effective intervention. In the present study, we describe different sudden death risk-stratification strategies. Different sudden death treatment strategies regarding general population have different success rates in different countries, nevertheless, among select high risk populations; the best therapy currently available is the automatic implantable cardioverter-defibrillator. We also discuss other treatment options. In Mexico it is deemed necessary to do an important effort for the early detection, prevention and treatment of sudden death in order to limit the consequences of this problem. PMID:15892455

  3. Hypochondriasis and fear of death.

    PubMed

    Noyes, Russell; Stuart, Scott; Longley, Susan L; Langbehn, Douglas R; Happel, Rachel L

    2002-08-01

    Although fear of death has been linked to hypochondriasis, the relationship of this fear to the disorder has received little study. To address this deficiency, we administered a fear of death scale along with measures of hypochondriasis, including the Whiteley Index and Somatic Symptom Inventory, to 162 general medical outpatients. Partial correlations, controlling for age, between the fear of death scale and both the Whiteley Index and Somatic Symptom Inventory were strongly positive. A factor analysis of the fear of death scale yielded three dimensions-fear of dying, loss of meaning, and fear of separation-that were also highly correlated with hypochondriasis. Fear of death and hypochondriasis showed comparable relationships to age and gender as well as to personality dimensions measured by the NEO Five-Factor Inventory. Fear of death appears to be an integral part of hypochondriasis. Its presence lends support to three models of hypochondriasis-the perceptual, existential, and interpersonal-that correspond to the dimensions of fear of death.

  4. Psychosocial Aspects of the Sudden Infant Death Syndrome ("Cot Death").

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Bluglass, Kerry

    1981-01-01

    Reviews literature on reactions of parents and siblings to Sudden Infant Death Syndrome (SIDS). The prospects for prolonged, adverse reactions are considered, and professional concerns regarding abnormal adaptation are noted. (Author/DB)

  5. The Molecular Ecophysiology of Programmed Cell Death in Marine Phytoplankton

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bidle, Kay D.

    2015-01-01

    Planktonic, prokaryotic, and eukaryotic photoautotrophs (phytoplankton) share a diverse and ancient evolutionary history, during which time they have played key roles in regulating marine food webs, biogeochemical cycles, and Earth's climate. Because phytoplankton represent the basis of marine ecosystems, the manner in which they die critically determines the flow and fate of photosynthetically fixed organic matter (and associated elements), ultimately constraining upper-ocean biogeochemistry. Programmed cell death (PCD) and associated pathway genes, which are triggered by a variety of nutrient stressors and are employed by parasitic viruses, play an integral role in determining the cell fate of diverse photoautotrophs in the modern ocean. Indeed, these multifaceted death pathways continue to shape the success and evolutionary trajectory of diverse phytoplankton lineages at sea. Research over the past two decades has employed physiological, biochemical, and genetic techniques to provide a novel, comprehensive, mechanistic understanding of the factors controlling this key process. Here, I discuss the current understanding of the genetics, activation, and regulation of PCD pathways in marine model systems; how PCD evolved in unicellular photoautotrophs; how it mechanistically interfaces with viral infection pathways; how stress signals are sensed and transduced into cellular responses; and how novel molecular and biochemical tools are revealing the impact of PCD genes on the fate of natural phytoplankton assemblages.

  6. Evolutionary theory in letters to the editor.

    PubMed

    Silva, Eric Orion; Lowe, Clayton Cory

    2015-05-01

    This research note presents the results of a content analysis of 234 letters to the editors that discuss evolutionary theory and were published in American newspapers. We find that letters to the editor both support and hinder the cause of teaching evolutionary theory in American secondary schools. On the one hand, anti-evolutionary theory messages are marginalized in the letters section. This marginalization signals a low level of legitimacy for creationism. It might also contribute to the sense of tension that sustains creationist identities. On the other hand, relatively few letters explicitly note the fact that scientists or the scientific community accept evolution. Interestingly, the obscuration of the scientific community's support for evolutionary theory occurs both in letters supporting and opposing evolutionary theory.

  7. Evolutionary theory in letters to the editor.

    PubMed

    Silva, Eric Orion; Lowe, Clayton Cory

    2015-05-01

    This research note presents the results of a content analysis of 234 letters to the editors that discuss evolutionary theory and were published in American newspapers. We find that letters to the editor both support and hinder the cause of teaching evolutionary theory in American secondary schools. On the one hand, anti-evolutionary theory messages are marginalized in the letters section. This marginalization signals a low level of legitimacy for creationism. It might also contribute to the sense of tension that sustains creationist identities. On the other hand, relatively few letters explicitly note the fact that scientists or the scientific community accept evolution. Interestingly, the obscuration of the scientific community's support for evolutionary theory occurs both in letters supporting and opposing evolutionary theory. PMID:25540333

  8. Evolutionary rescue in a changing world.

    PubMed

    Carlson, Stephanie M; Cunningham, Curry J; Westley, Peter A H

    2014-09-01

    Evolutionary rescue occurs when adaptive evolutionary change restores positive growth to declining populations and prevents extinction. Here we outline the diagnostic features of evolutionary rescue and distinguish this phenomenon from demographic and genetic rescue. We then synthesize the rapidly accumulating theoretical and experimental studies of evolutionary rescue, highlighting the demographic, genetic, and extrinsic factors that affect the probability of rescue. By doing so, we clarify the factors to target through management and conservation. Additionally, we identify several putative cases of evolutionary rescue in nature, but conclude that compelling evidence remains elusive. We conclude with a horizon scan of where the field might develop, highlighting areas of potential application, and suggest areas where experimental evaluation will help to evaluate theoretical predictions. PMID:25038023

  9. The emergence of an `evolutionary geomorphology'?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Steiger, Johannes; Corenblit, Dov

    2012-09-01

    Earth surface processes and landforms are modified through the actions of many microorganisms, plants and animals. As organism-driven landform modifications are sometimes to the advantage of the organism, some of these landform features have become adaptive functional components of ecosystems, concurrently affecting and responding to ecological and evolutionary processes. These recent eco-evolutionary insights, focused on feedback among geomorphologic, ecological and evolutionary processes, are currently leading to the emergence of what has been called an `evolutionary geomorphology', with explicit consideration of feedbacks among the evolution of organisms, ecosystem structure and function and landform organization at the Earth surface. Here we provide an overview in the form of a commentary of this emerging sub-discipline in geosciences and ask whether the use of the term `evolutionary geomorphology' is appropriate or rather misleading.

  10. Do Psychological Sex Differences Reflect Evolutionary Bisexual Partitioning?

    PubMed

    Trofimova, Irina

    2015-01-01

    This article analyzes sex differences in communicative and exploratory abilities and mental disabilities from the rarely discussed perspective of sex differences in the shape of phenotypic distributions. The article reviews the most consistent findings related to such differences and compares them with the evolutionary theory of sex (ETS). The ETS considers sexual dimorphism as a functional specialization of a species into 2 partitions: variational and conservational. The analysis suggests that male superiority in risk and sensation seeking and physical abilities; higher rates of psychopathy, dyslexia, and autism; and higher birth and accidental death rates reflects the systemic variational function of the male sex. Female superiority in verbal abilities, lawfulness, socialization, empathy, and agreeableness is presented as a reflection of the systemic conservational function of the female sex. From this perspective psychological sex differences in communicative and exploratory abilities might not just be an accidental result of sexual selection or labor distribution in early humans. It might reflect a global functional differentiation tendency within a species to expand its phenotypic diversity and at the same time to conserve beneficial features in the species' behavior. The article also offers an addition to the ETS by suggesting that the male sex (variable partition) plays an evolutionary role in pruning of the redundant excesses in a species' bank of beneficial characteristics despite resistance from the conservational partition. PMID:26721176

  11. The evolutionary history of lethal metastatic prostate cancer.

    PubMed

    Gundem, Gunes; Van Loo, Peter; Kremeyer, Barbara; Alexandrov, Ludmil B; Tubio, Jose M C; Papaemmanuil, Elli; Brewer, Daniel S; Kallio, Heini M L; Högnäs, Gunilla; Annala, Matti; Kivinummi, Kati; Goody, Victoria; Latimer, Calli; O'Meara, Sarah; Dawson, Kevin J; Isaacs, William; Emmert-Buck, Michael R; Nykter, Matti; Foster, Christopher; Kote-Jarai, Zsofia; Easton, Douglas; Whitaker, Hayley C; Neal, David E; Cooper, Colin S; Eeles, Rosalind A; Visakorpi, Tapio; Campbell, Peter J; McDermott, Ultan; Wedge, David C; Bova, G Steven

    2015-04-16

    Cancers emerge from an ongoing Darwinian evolutionary process, often leading to multiple competing subclones within a single primary tumour. This evolutionary process culminates in the formation of metastases, which is the cause of 90% of cancer-related deaths. However, despite its clinical importance, little is known about the principles governing the dissemination of cancer cells to distant organs. Although the hypothesis that each metastasis originates from a single tumour cell is generally supported, recent studies using mouse models of cancer demonstrated the existence of polyclonal seeding from and interclonal cooperation between multiple subclones. Here we sought definitive evidence for the existence of polyclonal seeding in human malignancy and to establish the clonal relationship among different metastases in the context of androgen-deprived metastatic prostate cancer. Using whole-genome sequencing, we characterized multiple metastases arising from prostate tumours in ten patients. Integrated analyses of subclonal architecture revealed the patterns of metastatic spread in unprecedented detail. Metastasis-to-metastasis spread was found to be common, either through de novo monoclonal seeding of daughter metastases or, in five cases, through the transfer of multiple tumour clones between metastatic sites. Lesions affecting tumour suppressor genes usually occur as single events, whereas mutations in genes involved in androgen receptor signalling commonly involve multiple, convergent events in different metastases. Our results elucidate in detail the complex patterns of metastatic spread and further our understanding of the development of resistance to androgen-deprivation therapy in prostate cancer. PMID:25830880

  12. 38 CFR 3.211 - Death.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2013 CFR

    2013-07-01

    ... 38 Pensions, Bonuses, and Veterans' Relief 1 2013-07-01 2013-07-01 false Death. 3.211 Section 3..., Compensation, and Dependency and Indemnity Compensation Evidence Requirements § 3.211 Death. Death should be... community where death occurred. (2) A copy of a coroner's report of death or a verdict of a coroner's...

  13. 38 CFR 3.211 - Death.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2010 CFR

    2010-07-01

    ... 38 Pensions, Bonuses, and Veterans' Relief 1 2010-07-01 2010-07-01 false Death. 3.211 Section 3..., Compensation, and Dependency and Indemnity Compensation Evidence Requirements § 3.211 Death. Death should be... community where death occurred. (2) A copy of a coroner's report of death or a verdict of a coroner's...

  14. 32 CFR 700.815 - Deaths.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2011 CFR

    2011-07-01

    ... 32 National Defense 5 2011-07-01 2011-07-01 false Deaths. 700.815 Section 700.815 National Defense... § 700.815 Deaths. The commanding officer, in the event of the death of any person within his or her command, shall ensure that the cause of death and the circumstances under which death occurred...

  15. 32 CFR 700.815 - Deaths.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2010 CFR

    2010-07-01

    ... 32 National Defense 5 2010-07-01 2010-07-01 false Deaths. 700.815 Section 700.815 National Defense... § 700.815 Deaths. The commanding officer, in the event of the death of any person within his or her command, shall ensure that the cause of death and the circumstances under which death occurred...

  16. 32 CFR 700.815 - Deaths.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2013 CFR

    2013-07-01

    ... 32 National Defense 5 2013-07-01 2013-07-01 false Deaths. 700.815 Section 700.815 National Defense... § 700.815 Deaths. The commanding officer, in the event of the death of any person within his or her command, shall ensure that the cause of death and the circumstances under which death occurred...

  17. 32 CFR 700.815 - Deaths.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2012 CFR

    2012-07-01

    ... 32 National Defense 5 2012-07-01 2012-07-01 false Deaths. 700.815 Section 700.815 National Defense... § 700.815 Deaths. The commanding officer, in the event of the death of any person within his or her command, shall ensure that the cause of death and the circumstances under which death occurred...

  18. 38 CFR 3.211 - Death.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2012 CFR

    2012-07-01

    ... 38 Pensions, Bonuses, and Veterans' Relief 1 2012-07-01 2012-07-01 false Death. 3.211 Section 3..., Compensation, and Dependency and Indemnity Compensation Evidence Requirements § 3.211 Death. Death should be... community where death occurred. (2) A copy of a coroner's report of death or a verdict of a coroner's...

  19. 38 CFR 3.211 - Death.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2014 CFR

    2014-07-01

    ... 38 Pensions, Bonuses, and Veterans' Relief 1 2014-07-01 2014-07-01 false Death. 3.211 Section 3..., Compensation, and Dependency and Indemnity Compensation Evidence Requirements § 3.211 Death. Death should be... community where death occurred. (2) A copy of a coroner's report of death or a verdict of a coroner's...

  20. 38 CFR 3.211 - Death.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2011 CFR

    2011-07-01

    ... 38 Pensions, Bonuses, and Veterans' Relief 1 2011-07-01 2011-07-01 false Death. 3.211 Section 3..., Compensation, and Dependency and Indemnity Compensation Evidence Requirements § 3.211 Death. Death should be... community where death occurred. (2) A copy of a coroner's report of death or a verdict of a coroner's...

  1. 32 CFR 700.815 - Deaths.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2014 CFR

    2014-07-01

    ... 32 National Defense 5 2014-07-01 2014-07-01 false Deaths. 700.815 Section 700.815 National Defense... § 700.815 Deaths. The commanding officer, in the event of the death of any person within his or her command, shall ensure that the cause of death and the circumstances under which death occurred...

  2. Attitudes Toward Death, Anxiety, and Social Desirability

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Dickstein, Louis S.

    1978-01-01

    Undergraduates (34 males and 34 females) completed four scales of attitudes toward death including the Death Concern Scale, Templer Death Anxiety Scale, Tolor and Reznikoff Death Anxiety Scale, and Fear of Death and Dying Scale. Four scales showed moderate commonality reflecting 35 percent variance for males and females. (Author)

  3. Preventable childhood deaths in Wolverhampton.

    PubMed Central

    Moore, A

    1986-01-01

    A retrospective survey was undertaken of all deaths in children under 5 in the borough of Wolverhampton over the years 1976-82. Cause of death was classified in terms of preventability and possibly preventable deaths studied in more detail. Birth weight in the study group was significantly lower than that of the local population; there was no difference in ethnic origin, but there were significantly more Asian girls than Asian boys. The association between potentially preventable death and various socioeconomic indicators in the electoral wards in the borough was investigated. A significant association was found between mortality and overcrowding, lack of household amenities, unemployment, lack of car ownership, and households where the head was born in the new Commonwealth or Pakistan. PMID:3092970

  4. Distressing near-death experiences.

    PubMed

    Greyson, B; Bush, N E

    1992-02-01

    Most reported near-death experiences include profound feelings of peace, joy, and cosmic unity. Less familiar are the reports following close brushes with death of experiences that are partially or entirely unpleasant, frightening, or frankly hellish. While little is known about the antecedents or aftereffects of these distressing experiences, there appear to be three distinct types, involving (1) phenomenology similar to peaceful near-death experiences but interpreted as unpleasant, (2) a sense of nonexistence or eternal void, or (3) graphic hellish landscapes and entities. While the first type may eventually convert to a typical peaceful experience, the relationship of all three types to prototypical near-death experiences merits further study. The effect of the distressing experience in the lives of individuals deserves exploration, as the psychological impact may be profound and long-lasting.

  5. Childhood, Death, and Cognitive Development

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Koocher, Gerald P.

    1973-01-01

    Explored children's conceptions of death from a Piagetian framework. Significant changes in the direction of more realistic attitudes by children were noted as levels of cognitive development advanced. (DP)

  6. Actual innocence: is death different?

    PubMed

    Acker, James R

    2009-01-01

    Supreme Court jurisprudence relies heavily on the premise that "death is different" from other criminal sanctions, and that capital cases entail commensurately demanding standards of reliability. Although invoked most frequently with respect to sentencing, both precedent and logic suggest that heightened reliability applies as well to guilt determination in capital trials. Nevertheless, recurrent and highly visible wrongful convictions in capital cases have affected public opinion, contributed to a precipitous decline in new death sentences, and led to calls for reforms designed to guard against the risk of executing innocent persons. This article examines the implications of the "death is different" doctrine for the problem of wrongful convictions in both capital and non-capital cases. It argues that innovations designed to enhance reliability in the special context of death-penalty prosecutions are important in their own right, but relevant new safeguards also should extend to criminal cases generally, where innocent people are similarly at risk and wrongful convictions are far more prevalent.

  7. Spinal reflexes in brain death.

    PubMed

    Beckmann, Yesim; Çiftçi, Yeliz; Incesu, Tülay Kurt; Seçil, Yaprak; Akhan, Galip

    2014-12-01

    Spontaneous and reflex movements have been described in brain death and these unusual movements might cause uncertainties in diagnosis. In this study we evaluated the presence of spinal reflexes in patients who fulfilled the criteria for brain death. Thirty-two (22 %) of 144 patients presented unexpected motor movements spontaneously or during examinations. These patients exhibited the following signs: undulating toe, increased deep tendon reflexes, plantar responses, Lazarus sign, flexion-withdrawal reflex, facial myokymia, neck-arm flexion, finger jerks and fasciculations. In comparison, there were no significant differences in age, sex, etiology of brain death and hemodynamic laboratory findings in patients with and without reflex motor movement. Spinal reflexes should be well recognized by physicians and it should be born in mind that brain death can be determined in the presence of spinal reflexes.

  8. Treating the condemned to death.

    PubMed

    Sargent, D A

    1986-12-01

    Psychiatrists should refrain from treating mentally ill prisoners on death row in order to restore their "competency to be executed." Such "treatment" renders them double agents, in the service of the state as well as the prisoner. Participation in an act that will bring about a prisoner's death is expressly forbidden by the AMA Code of Ethics. It recalls the behavior of Nazi physicians, who used their professional skills not to heal but to kill.

  9. New insights into autophagic cell death in the gypsy moth Lymantria dispar: a proteomic approach.

    PubMed

    Malagoli, Davide; Boraldi, Federica; Annovi, Giulia; Quaglino, Daniela; Ottaviani, Enzo

    2009-04-01

    Autophagy is an evolutionary ancient process based on the activity of genes conserved from yeast to metazoan taxa. Whereas its role as a mechanism to provide energy during cell starvation is commonly accepted, debate continues about the occurrence of autophagy as a means specifically activated to achieve cell death. The IPLB-LdFB insect cell line, derived from the larval fat body of the lepidoptera Lymantria dispar, represents a suitable model to address this question, as both autophagic and apoptotic cell death can be induced by various stimuli. Using morphological and functional approaches, we have observed that the culture medium conditioned by IPLB-LdFB cells committed to death by the ATPase inhibitor oligomycin A stimulates autophagic cell death in untreated IPLB-LdFB cells. Moreover, proteomic analysis of the conditioned media suggests that, in IPLB-LdFB cells, oligomycin A promotes a shift towards lipid metabolism, increases oxidative stress and specifically directs the cells towards autophagic activity.

  10. In the shadow of death.

    PubMed

    Meissner, W W

    1995-08-01

    Death dogged Vincent's footsteps throughout his life, and formed a core component of his unconscious fantasy system. It cast a lugubrious shadow over all of his undertakings--he found little joy and less love in life. It found its way onto his canvases, both directly--the grinning death's head--and indirectly. It found expression in his portrayals of sowers and reapers, in his representations of trees--especially the highly symbolic treatments of cypresses--in the menacing crows hovering over storm-darkened fields of wheat, and finally in the images of Christ, suffering and dead, held in the embrace of a loving and grieving mother. If death was a bottomless pit that haunted him with its terrors, it was also a siren song that drew him ever closer to his destiny, ever closer to the edge of the pit. The power of that attraction lies in his identification with the dead Vincent whose place he had taken and whose name he bore. It was through that identification, and through the passageway of suffering and death that he would surcease in the arms of a loving and accepting mother whose warm embrace he had sought throughout his odyssey, but in vain. It was to be gained only in and through death. It was only through death that he would find rest from his pain and would gain the heavenly reward of his suffering in eternal love and bliss. PMID:8545507

  11. In the shadow of death.

    PubMed

    Meissner, W W

    1995-08-01

    Death dogged Vincent's footsteps throughout his life, and formed a core component of his unconscious fantasy system. It cast a lugubrious shadow over all of his undertakings--he found little joy and less love in life. It found its way onto his canvases, both directly--the grinning death's head--and indirectly. It found expression in his portrayals of sowers and reapers, in his representations of trees--especially the highly symbolic treatments of cypresses--in the menacing crows hovering over storm-darkened fields of wheat, and finally in the images of Christ, suffering and dead, held in the embrace of a loving and grieving mother. If death was a bottomless pit that haunted him with its terrors, it was also a siren song that drew him ever closer to his destiny, ever closer to the edge of the pit. The power of that attraction lies in his identification with the dead Vincent whose place he had taken and whose name he bore. It was through that identification, and through the passageway of suffering and death that he would surcease in the arms of a loving and accepting mother whose warm embrace he had sought throughout his odyssey, but in vain. It was to be gained only in and through death. It was only through death that he would find rest from his pain and would gain the heavenly reward of his suffering in eternal love and bliss.

  12. Evolutionary psychology. Controversies, questions, prospects, and limitations.

    PubMed

    Confer, Jaime C; Easton, Judith A; Fleischman, Diana S; Goetz, Cari D; Lewis, David M G; Perilloux, Carin; Buss, David M

    2010-01-01

    Evolutionary psychology has emerged over the past 15 years as a major theoretical perspective, generating an increasing volume of empirical studies and assuming a larger presence within psychological science. At the same time, it has generated critiques and remains controversial among some psychologists. Some of the controversy stems from hypotheses that go against traditional psychological theories; some from empirical findings that may have disturbing implications; some from misunderstandings about the logic of evolutionary psychology; and some from reasonable scientific concerns about its underlying framework. This article identifies some of the most common concerns and attempts to elucidate evolutionary psychology's stance pertaining to them. These include issues of testability and falsifiability; the domain specificity versus domain generality of psychological mechanisms; the role of novel environments as they interact with evolved psychological circuits; the role of genes in the conceptual structure of evolutionary psychology; the roles of learning, socialization, and culture in evolutionary psychology; and the practical value of applied evolutionary psychology. The article concludes with a discussion of the limitations of current evolutionary psychology.

  13. Maximum likelihood inference of reticulate evolutionary histories.

    PubMed

    Yu, Yun; Dong, Jianrong; Liu, Kevin J; Nakhleh, Luay

    2014-11-18

    Hybridization plays an important role in the evolution of certain groups of organisms, adaptation to their environments, and diversification of their genomes. The evolutionary histories of such groups are reticulate, and methods for reconstructing them are still in their infancy and have limited applicability. We present a maximum likelihood method for inferring reticulate evolutionary histories while accounting simultaneously for incomplete lineage sorting. Additionally, we propose methods for assessing confidence in the amount of reticulation and the topology of the inferred evolutionary history. Our method obtains accurate estimates of reticulate evolutionary histories on simulated datasets. Furthermore, our method provides support for a hypothesis of a reticulate evolutionary history inferred from a set of house mouse (Mus musculus) genomes. As evidence of hybridization in eukaryotic groups accumulates, it is essential to have methods that infer reticulate evolutionary histories. The work we present here allows for such inference and provides a significant step toward putting phylogenetic networks on par with phylogenetic trees as a model of capturing evolutionary relationships. PMID:25368173

  14. Evolutionary indirect effects of biological invasions.

    PubMed

    Lau, Jennifer A

    2012-09-01

    Just as ecological indirect effects can have a wide range of consequences for community structure and ecosystem function, theory suggests that evolutionary indirect effects can also influence community dynamics and the outcome of species interactions. There is little empirical evidence documenting such effects, however. Here, I use a multi-generation selection experiment in the field to investigate: (1) how the exotic plant Medicago polymorpha and the exotic insect herbivore Hypera brunneipennis affect the evolution of anti-herbivore resistance traits in the native plant Lotus wrangelianus and (2) how observed Lotus evolutionary responses to Hypera alter interactions between Lotus and other members of the herbivore community. In one of two study populations, I document rapid evolutionary changes in Lotus resistance to Hypera in response to insecticide treatments that experimentally reduced Hypera abundance, and in response to Medicago-removal treatments that also reduced Hypera abundance. These evolutionary changes in response to Hypera result in reduced attack by aphids. Thus, an evolutionary change caused by one herbivore species alters interactions with other herbivore taxa, an example of an eco-evolutionary feedback. Given that many traits mediate interactions with multiple species, the effects of evolutionary changes in response to one key biotic selective agent may often cascade through interaction webs to influence additional community members.

  15. The Evolutionary Origins of Hierarchy.

    PubMed

    Mengistu, Henok; Huizinga, Joost; Mouret, Jean-Baptiste; Clune, Jeff

    2016-06-01

    Hierarchical organization-the recursive composition of sub-modules-is ubiquitous in biological networks, including neural, metabolic, ecological, and genetic regulatory networks, and in human-made systems, such as large organizations and the Internet. To date, most research on hierarchy in networks has been limited to quantifying this property. However, an open, important question in evolutionary biology is why hierarchical organization evolves in the first place. It has recently been shown that modularity evolves because of the presence of a cost for network connections. Here we investigate whether such connection costs also tend to cause a hierarchical organization of such modules. In computational simulations, we find that networks without a connection cost do not evolve to be hierarchical, even when the task has a hierarchical structure. However, with a connection cost, networks evolve to be both modular and hierarchical, and these networks exhibit higher overall performance and evolvability (i.e. faster adaptation to new environments). Additional analyses confirm that hierarchy independently improves adaptability after controlling for modularity. Overall, our results suggest that the same force-the cost of connections-promotes the evolution of both hierarchy and modularity, and that these properties are important drivers of network performance and adaptability. In addition to shedding light on the emergence of hierarchy across the many domains in which it appears, these findings will also accelerate future research into evolving more complex, intelligent computational brains in the fields of artificial intelligence and robotics. PMID:27280881

  16. The Evolutionary Origins of Hierarchy.

    PubMed

    Mengistu, Henok; Huizinga, Joost; Mouret, Jean-Baptiste; Clune, Jeff

    2016-06-01

    Hierarchical organization-the recursive composition of sub-modules-is ubiquitous in biological networks, including neural, metabolic, ecological, and genetic regulatory networks, and in human-made systems, such as large organizations and the Internet. To date, most research on hierarchy in networks has been limited to quantifying this property. However, an open, important question in evolutionary biology is why hierarchical organization evolves in the first place. It has recently been shown that modularity evolves because of the presence of a cost for network connections. Here we investigate whether such connection costs also tend to cause a hierarchical organization of such modules. In computational simulations, we find that networks without a connection cost do not evolve to be hierarchical, even when the task has a hierarchical structure. However, with a connection cost, networks evolve to be both modular and hierarchical, and these networks exhibit higher overall performance and evolvability (i.e. faster adaptation to new environments). Additional analyses confirm that hierarchy independently improves adaptability after controlling for modularity. Overall, our results suggest that the same force-the cost of connections-promotes the evolution of both hierarchy and modularity, and that these properties are important drivers of network performance and adaptability. In addition to shedding light on the emergence of hierarchy across the many domains in which it appears, these findings will also accelerate future research into evolving more complex, intelligent computational brains in the fields of artificial intelligence and robotics.

  17. The Evolutionary Origins of Hierarchy

    PubMed Central

    Huizinga, Joost; Clune, Jeff

    2016-01-01

    Hierarchical organization—the recursive composition of sub-modules—is ubiquitous in biological networks, including neural, metabolic, ecological, and genetic regulatory networks, and in human-made systems, such as large organizations and the Internet. To date, most research on hierarchy in networks has been limited to quantifying this property. However, an open, important question in evolutionary biology is why hierarchical organization evolves in the first place. It has recently been shown that modularity evolves because of the presence of a cost for network connections. Here we investigate whether such connection costs also tend to cause a hierarchical organization of such modules. In computational simulations, we find that networks without a connection cost do not evolve to be hierarchical, even when the task has a hierarchical structure. However, with a connection cost, networks evolve to be both modular and hierarchical, and these networks exhibit higher overall performance and evolvability (i.e. faster adaptation to new environments). Additional analyses confirm that hierarchy independently improves adaptability after controlling for modularity. Overall, our results suggest that the same force–the cost of connections–promotes the evolution of both hierarchy and modularity, and that these properties are important drivers of network performance and adaptability. In addition to shedding light on the emergence of hierarchy across the many domains in which it appears, these findings will also accelerate future research into evolving more complex, intelligent computational brains in the fields of artificial intelligence and robotics. PMID:27280881

  18. Natural pedagogy as evolutionary adaptation

    PubMed Central

    Csibra, Gergely; Gergely, György

    2011-01-01

    We propose that the cognitive mechanisms that enable the transmission of cultural knowledge by communication between individuals constitute a system of ‘natural pedagogy’ in humans, and represent an evolutionary adaptation along the hominin lineage. We discuss three kinds of arguments that support this hypothesis. First, natural pedagogy is likely to be human-specific: while social learning and communication are both widespread in non-human animals, we know of no example of social learning by communication in any other species apart from humans. Second, natural pedagogy is universal: despite the huge variability in child-rearing practices, all human cultures rely on communication to transmit to novices a variety of different types of cultural knowledge, including information about artefact kinds, conventional behaviours, arbitrary referential symbols, cognitively opaque skills and know-how embedded in means-end actions. Third, the data available on early hominin technological culture are more compatible with the assumption that natural pedagogy was an independently selected adaptive cognitive system than considering it as a by-product of some other human-specific adaptation, such as language. By providing a qualitatively new type of social learning mechanism, natural pedagogy is not only the product but also one of the sources of the rich cultural heritage of our species. PMID:21357237

  19. The Year in Evolutionary Biology

    PubMed Central

    Bataillon, Thomas; Bailey, Susan F

    2014-01-01

    The rates and properties of new mutations affecting fitness have implications for a number of outstanding questions in evolutionary biology. Obtaining estimates of mutation rates and effects has historically been challenging, and little theory has been available for predicting the distribution of fitness effects (DFE); however, there have been recent advances on both fronts. Extreme-value theory predicts the DFE of beneficial mutations in well-adapted populations, while phenotypic fitness landscape models make predictions for the DFE of all mutations as a function of the initial level of adaptation and the strength of stabilizing selection on traits underlying fitness. Direct experimental evidence confirms predictions on the DFE of beneficial mutations and favors distributions that are roughly exponential but bounded on the right. A growing number of studies infer the DFE using genomic patterns of polymorphism and divergence, recovering a wide range of DFE. Future work should be aimed at identifying factors driving the observed variation in the DFE. We emphasize the need for further theory explicitly incorporating the effects of partial pleiotropy and heterogeneity in the environment on the expected DFE. PMID:24891070

  20. Evolutionary games in the multiverse.

    PubMed

    Gokhale, Chaitanya S; Traulsen, Arne

    2010-03-23

    Evolutionary game dynamics of two players with two strategies has been studied in great detail. These games have been used to model many biologically relevant scenarios, ranging from social dilemmas in mammals to microbial diversity. Some of these games may, in fact, take place between a number of individuals and not just between two. Here we address one-shot games with multiple players. As long as we have only two strategies, many results from two-player games can be generalized to multiple players. For games with multiple players and more than two strategies, we show that statements derived for pairwise interactions no longer hold. For two-player games with any number of strategies there can be at most one isolated internal equilibrium. For any number of players with any number of strategies , there can be at most isolated internal equilibria. Multiplayer games show a great dynamical complexity that cannot be captured based on pairwise interactions. Our results hold for any game and can easily be applied to specific cases, such as public goods games or multiplayer stag hunts.

  1. Evolutionary games in the multiverse

    PubMed Central

    Gokhale, Chaitanya S.; Traulsen, Arne

    2010-01-01

    Evolutionary game dynamics of two players with two strategies has been studied in great detail. These games have been used to model many biologically relevant scenarios, ranging from social dilemmas in mammals to microbial diversity. Some of these games may, in fact, take place between a number of individuals and not just between two. Here we address one-shot games with multiple players. As long as we have only two strategies, many results from two-player games can be generalized to multiple players. For games with multiple players and more than two strategies, we show that statements derived for pairwise interactions no longer hold. For two-player games with any number of strategies there can be at most one isolated internal equilibrium. For any number of players with any number of strategies , there can be at most isolated internal equilibria. Multiplayer games show a great dynamical complexity that cannot be captured based on pairwise interactions. Our results hold for any game and can easily be applied to specific cases, such as public goods games or multiplayer stag hunts. PMID:20212124

  2. Evolutionary optimization of protein folding.

    PubMed

    Debès, Cédric; Wang, Minglei; Caetano-Anollés, Gustavo; Gräter, Frauke

    2013-01-01

    Nature has shaped the make up of proteins since their appearance, [Formula: see text]3.8 billion years ago. However, the fundamental drivers of structural change responsible for the extraordinary diversity of proteins have yet to be elucidated. Here we explore if protein evolution affects folding speed. We estimated folding times for the present-day catalog of protein domains directly from their size-modified contact order. These values were mapped onto an evolutionary timeline of domain appearance derived from a phylogenomic analysis of protein domains in 989 fully-sequenced genomes. Our results show a clear overall increase of folding speed during evolution, with known ultra-fast downhill folders appearing rather late in the timeline. Remarkably, folding optimization depends on secondary structure. While alpha-folds showed a tendency to fold faster throughout evolution, beta-folds exhibited a trend of folding time increase during the last [Formula: see text]1.5 billion years that began during the "big bang" of domain combinations. As a consequence, these domain structures are on average slow folders today. Our results suggest that fast and efficient folding of domains shaped the universe of protein structure. This finding supports the hypothesis that optimization of the kinetic and thermodynamic accessibility of the native fold reduces protein aggregation propensities that hamper cellular functions. PMID:23341762

  3. Evolutionary advantages of adaptive rewarding

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Szolnoki, Attila; Perc, Matjaž

    2012-09-01

    Our well-being depends on both our personal success and the success of our society. The realization of this fact makes cooperation an essential trait. Experiments have shown that rewards can elevate our readiness to cooperate, but since giving a reward inevitably entails paying a cost for it, the emergence and stability of such behavior remains elusive. Here we show that allowing for the act of rewarding to self-organize in dependence on the success of cooperation creates several evolutionary advantages that instill new ways through which collaborative efforts are promoted. Ranging from indirect territorial battle to the spontaneous emergence and destruction of coexistence, phase diagrams and the underlying spatial patterns reveal fascinatingly rich social dynamics that explain why this costly behavior has evolved and persevered. Comparisons with adaptive punishment, however, uncover an Achilles heel of adaptive rewarding, coming from over-aggression, which in turn hinders optimal utilization of network reciprocity. This may explain why, despite its success, rewarding is not as firmly embedded into our societal organization as punishment.

  4. Evolutionary games in the multiverse.

    PubMed

    Gokhale, Chaitanya S; Traulsen, Arne

    2010-03-23

    Evolutionary game dynamics of two players with two strategies has been studied in great detail. These games have been used to model many biologically relevant scenarios, ranging from social dilemmas in mammals to microbial diversity. Some of these games may, in fact, take place between a number of individuals and not just between two. Here we address one-shot games with multiple players. As long as we have only two strategies, many results from two-player games can be generalized to multiple players. For games with multiple players and more than two strategies, we show that statements derived for pairwise interactions no longer hold. For two-player games with any number of strategies there can be at most one isolated internal equilibrium. For any number of players with any number of strategies , there can be at most isolated internal equilibria. Multiplayer games show a great dynamical complexity that cannot be captured based on pairwise interactions. Our results hold for any game and can easily be applied to specific cases, such as public goods games or multiplayer stag hunts. PMID:20212124

  5. Computational and evolutionary aspects of language.

    PubMed

    Nowak, Martin A; Komarova, Natalia L; Niyogi, Partha

    2002-06-01

    Language is our legacy. It is the main evolutionary contribution of humans, and perhaps the most interesting trait that has emerged in the past 500 million years. Understanding how darwinian evolution gives rise to human language requires the integration of formal language theory, learning theory and evolutionary dynamics. Formal language theory provides a mathematical description of language and grammar. Learning theory formalizes the task of language acquisition it can be shown that no procedure can learn an unrestricted set of languages. Universal grammar specifies the restricted set of languages learnable by the human brain. Evolutionary dynamics can be formulated to describe the cultural evolution of language and the biological evolution of universal grammar.

  6. A novel classification system for evolutionary aging theories.

    PubMed

    Trindade, Lucas S; Aigaki, Toshiro; Peixoto, Alexandre A; Balduino, Alex; Mânica da Cruz, Ivana B; Heddle, Jonathan G

    2013-01-01

    Theories of lifespan evolution are a source of confusion amongst aging researchers. After a century of aging research the dispute over whether the aging process is active or passive persists and a comprehensive and universally accepted theoretical model remains elusive. Evolutionary aging theories primarily dispute whether the aging process is exclusively adapted to favor the kin or exclusively non-adapted to favor the individual. Interestingly, contradictory data and theories supporting both exclusively programmed and exclusively non-programmed theories continue to grow. However, this is a false dichotomy; natural selection favors traits resulting in efficient reproduction whether they benefit the individual or the kin. Thus, to understand the evolution of aging, first we must understand the environment-dependent balance between the advantages and disadvantages of extended lifespan in the process of spreading genes. As described by distinct theories, different niches and environmental conditions confer on extended lifespan a range of fitness values varying from highly beneficial to highly detrimental. Here, we considered the range of fitness values for extended lifespan and develop a fitness-based framework for categorizing existing theories. We show that all theories can be classified into four basic types: secondary (beneficial), maladaptive (neutral), assisted death (detrimental), and senemorphic aging (varying between beneficial to detrimental). We anticipate that this classification system will assist with understanding and interpreting aging/death by providing a way of considering theories as members of one of these classes rather than consideration of their individual details.

  7. A Conserved Core of Programmed Cell Death Indicator Genes Discriminates Developmentally and Environmentally Induced Programmed Cell Death in Plants1[OPEN

    PubMed Central

    Van Bel, Michiel; Van Hautegem, Tom; Fendrych, Matyáš; Simaskova, Maria; van Durme, Matthias; Buscaill, Pierre; Rivas, Susana; S. Coll, Nuria; Maere, Steven

    2015-01-01

    A plethora of diverse programmed cell death (PCD) processes has been described in living organisms. In animals and plants, different forms of PCD play crucial roles in development, immunity, and responses to the environment. While the molecular control of some animal PCD forms such as apoptosis is known in great detail, we still know comparatively little about the regulation of the diverse types of plant PCD. In part, this deficiency in molecular understanding is caused by the lack of reliable reporters to detect PCD processes. Here, we addressed this issue by using a combination of bioinformatics approaches to identify commonly regulated genes during diverse plant PCD processes in Arabidopsis (Arabidopsis thaliana). Our results indicate that the transcriptional signatures of developmentally controlled cell death are largely distinct from the ones associated with environmentally induced cell death. Moreover, different cases of developmental PCD share a set of cell death-associated genes. Most of these genes are evolutionary conserved within the green plant lineage, arguing for an evolutionary conserved core machinery of developmental PCD. Based on this information, we established an array of specific promoter-reporter lines for developmental PCD in Arabidopsis. These PCD indicators represent a powerful resource that can be used in addition to established morphological and biochemical methods to detect and analyze PCD processes in vivo and in planta. PMID:26438786

  8. Exploring Children's Understanding of Death: Through Drawings and the Death Concept Questionnaire

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Bonoti, Fotini; Leondari, Angeliki; Mastora, Adelais

    2013-01-01

    To investigate whether children's understanding of the concept of death varies as a function of death experience and age, 52 children aged 7, 9, and 11 years (26 had a personal death experience), drew a picture reflecting the meaning of the word death and completed the Death Concept Questionnaire for examination of Human and Animal Death. The…

  9. Sudden Unexpected Death in Infancy: place and time of death

    PubMed Central

    Glasgow, JFT; Thompson, AJ; Ingram, PJ

    2006-01-01

    In recent years, many babies who die of Sudden Unexpected Death in Infancy (SUDI) in Northern Ireland are found dead in bed – i.e. co-sleeping – with an adult. In order to assess its frequency autopsy reports between April 1996 and August 2001 were reviewed and linked to temporal factors. The day and month of death, and the place where the baby was found were compared to a reference population of infant deaths between one week of age and the second birthday. Although the rate of SUDI was lower than the UK average, 43 cases of SUDI were identified, and two additional deaths with virtually identical autopsy findings that were attributed to asphyxia caused by suffocation due to overlaying. Thirty-two of the 45 (71%) were less than four months of age. In 30 of the 45 cases (67%) the history stated that the baby was bed sharing with others; 19 died sleeping in an adult bed, and 11 on a sofa or armchair. In 16 of the 30 (53%) there were at least two other people sharing the sleeping surface, and in one case, three. SUDI was twice as frequent at weekends (found dead Saturday – Monday mornings) compared to weekdays (p<0.02), and significantly more common compared to reference deaths (p<0.002). Co-sleeping deaths were also more frequent at weekends. Almost half of all SUDI (49%) occurred in the summer months – more than twice the frequency of reference deaths. While sharing a place of sleep per se may not increase the risk of death, our findings may be linked to factors such as habitual smoking, consumption of alcohol or illicit drugs as reported in case-control studies. In advising parents on safer childcare practices, health professionals must be knowledgeable of current research and when, for example, giving advice on co-sleeping this needs to be person-specific cognisant of the risks within a household. New and better means of targeting such information needs to be researched if those with higher risk life-styles are to be positively influenced. PMID:16457407

  10. How mutation affects evolutionary games on graphs.

    PubMed

    Allen, Benjamin; Traulsen, Arne; Tarnita, Corina E; Nowak, Martin A

    2012-04-21

    Evolutionary dynamics are affected by population structure, mutation rates and update rules. Spatial or network structure facilitates the clustering of strategies, which represents a mechanism for the evolution of cooperation. Mutation dilutes this effect. Here we analyze how mutation influences evolutionary clustering on graphs. We introduce new mathematical methods to evolutionary game theory, specifically the analysis of coalescing random walks via generating functions. These techniques allow us to derive exact identity-by-descent (IBD) probabilities, which characterize spatial assortment on lattices and Cayley trees. From these IBD probabilities we obtain exact conditions for the evolution of cooperation and other game strategies, showing the dual effects of graph topology and mutation rate. High mutation rates diminish the clustering of cooperators, hindering their evolutionary success. Our model can represent either genetic evolution with mutation, or social imitation processes with random strategy exploration.

  11. [Evolutionary medicine: an emergent basic science].

    PubMed

    Spotorno, Angel E

    2005-02-01

    Evolutionary Medicine is an emergent basic science that offers new and varied perspectives to the comprehension of human health. The application of classic evolutionary theories (descent with modification, and natural selection) to the human organism, to its pathogens, and their mutual co-evolution, provides new explanations about why we get sick, how we can prevent this, and how we can heal. Medicine has focused mainly on the proximate or immediate causes of diseases and the treatment of symptoms, and very little on its evolutionary or mediate causes. For instance, the present human genome and phenotypes are essentially paleolithic ones: they are not adapted to modern life style, thus favoring the so-called diseases of civilization (ie: ateroesclerosis, senescence, myopia, phobias, panic attacks, stress, reproductive cancers). With the evolutionary approach, post-modern medicine is detecting better the vulnerabilities, restrictions, biases, adaptations and maladaptations of human body, its actual diseases, and its preventions.

  12. Evolutionary fire ecology: lessons learned from pines.

    PubMed

    Pausas, Juli G

    2015-05-01

    Macroevolutionary studies of the genus Pinus provide the oldest current evidence of fire as an evolutionary pressure on plants and date back to ca. 125 million years ago (Ma). Microevolutionary studies show that fire traits are variable within and among populations, especially among those subject to different fire regimes. In addition, there is increasing evidence of an inherited genetic basis to variability in fire traits. Added together, pines provide compelling evidence that fire can exert an evolutionary pressure on plants and, thus, shape biodiversity. In addition, evolutionary fire ecology is providing insights to improve the management of pine forests under changing conditions. The lessons learned from pines may guide research on the evolutionary ecology of other taxa.

  13. Teaching Evolutionary Theory as General Education.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Todd, Paul

    1984-01-01

    Provides a rationale for including evolution as part of a college general education curriculum, discussing the content of evolutionary theory, instructional principles, Darwin's contributions, evolution and religion, and the relationship of evolution with current events. (DMM)

  14. A Philosophical Perspective on Evolutionary Systems Biology

    PubMed Central

    Soyer, Orkun S.; Siegal, Mark L.

    2015-01-01

    Evolutionary systems biology (ESB) is an emerging hybrid approach that integrates methods, models, and data from evolutionary and systems biology. Drawing on themes that arose at a cross-disciplinary meeting on ESB in 2013, we discuss in detail some of the explanatory friction that arises in the interaction between evolutionary and systems biology. These tensions appear because of different modeling approaches, diverse explanatory aims and strategies, and divergent views about the scope of the evolutionary synthesis. We locate these discussions in the context of long-running philosophical deliberations on explanation, modeling, and theoretical synthesis. We show how many of the issues central to ESB’s progress can be understood as general philosophical problems. The benefits of addressing these philosophical issues feed back into philosophy too, because ESB provides excellent examples of scientific practice for the development of philosophy of science and philosophy of biology. PMID:26085823

  15. Variant evolutionary trees under phenotypic variance.

    PubMed

    Nishimura, Kinya; Isoda, Yutaka

    2004-01-01

    Evolutionary branching, which is a coevolutionary phenomenon of the development of two or more distinctive traits from a single trait in a population, is the issue of recent studies on adaptive dynamics. In previous studies, it was revealed that trait variance is a minimum requirement for evolutionary branching, and that it does not play an important role in the formation of an evolutionary pattern of branching. Here we demonstrate that the trait evolution exhibits various evolutionary branching paths starting from an identical initial trait to different evolutional terminus traits as determined by only changing the assumption of trait variance. The key feature of this phenomenon is the topological configuration of equilibria and the initial point in the manifold of dimorphism from which dimorphic branches develop. This suggests that the existing monomorphic or polymorphic set in a population is not an unique inevitable consequence of an identical initial phenotype.

  16. Evolutionary origins of leadership and followership.

    PubMed

    Van Vugt, Mark

    2006-01-01

    Drawing upon evolutionary logic, leadership is reconceptualized in terms of the outcome of strategic interactions among individuals who are following different, yet complementary, decision rules to solve recurrent coordination problems. This article uses the vast psychological literature on leadership as a database to test several evolutionary hypotheses about the origins of leadership and followership in humans. As expected, leadership correlates with initiative taking, trait measures of intelligence, specific task competencies, and several indicators of generosity. The review finds no link between leadership and dominance. The evolutionary analysis accounts for reliable age, health, and sex differences in leadership emergence. In general, evolutionary theory provides a useful, integrative framework for studying leader-follower relationships and generates various novel research hypotheses.

  17. Evolutionary interaction networks of insect pathogenic fungi.

    PubMed

    Boomsma, Jacobus J; Jensen, Annette B; Meyling, Nicolai V; Eilenberg, Jørgen

    2014-01-01

    Lineages of insect pathogenic fungi are concentrated in three major clades: Hypocreales (several genera), Entomophthoromycota (orders Entomophthorales and Neozygitales), and Onygenales (genus Ascosphaera). Our review focuses on aspects of the evolutionary biology of these fungi that have remained underemphasized in previous reviews. To ensure integration with the better-known domains of insect pathology research, we followed a conceptual framework formulated by Tinbergen, asking complementary questions on mechanism, ontogeny, phylogeny, and adaptation. We aim to provide an introduction to the merits of evolutionary approaches for readers with a background in invertebrate pathology research and to make the insect pathogenic fungi more accessible as model systems for evolutionary biologists. We identify a number of questions in which fundamental research can offer novel insights into the evolutionary forces that have shaped host specialization and life-history traits such as spore number and size, somatic growth rate, toxin production, and interactions with host immune systems.

  18. How Evolutionary Biologists Reconstruct History: Patterns & Processes

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Cooper, Robert A.

    2004-01-01

    Focusing on specific modes of evolutionally inquiry is important for students to achieve a mature understanding about evolutionary biology. Presenting evolution as rhetoric of conclusions would only confuse the minds of students.

  19. Scheduling Earth Observing Satellites with Evolutionary Algorithms

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Globus, Al; Crawford, James; Lohn, Jason; Pryor, Anna

    2003-01-01

    We hypothesize that evolutionary algorithms can effectively schedule coordinated fleets of Earth observing satellites. The constraints are complex and the bottlenecks are not well understood, a condition where evolutionary algorithms are often effective. This is, in part, because evolutionary algorithms require only that one can represent solutions, modify solutions, and evaluate solution fitness. To test the hypothesis we have developed a representative set of problems, produced optimization software (in Java) to solve them, and run experiments comparing techniques. This paper presents initial results of a comparison of several evolutionary and other optimization techniques; namely the genetic algorithm, simulated annealing, squeaky wheel optimization, and stochastic hill climbing. We also compare separate satellite vs. integrated scheduling of a two satellite constellation. While the results are not definitive, tests to date suggest that simulated annealing is the best search technique and integrated scheduling is superior.

  20. Evolutionary medicine: its scope, interest and potential

    PubMed Central

    Stearns, Stephen C.

    2012-01-01

    This review is aimed at readers seeking an introductory overview, teaching courses and interested in visionary ideas. It first describes the range of topics covered by evolutionary medicine, which include human genetic variation, mismatches to modernity, reproductive medicine, degenerative disease, host–pathogen interactions and insights from comparisons with other species. It then discusses priorities for translational research, basic research and health management. Its conclusions are that evolutionary thinking should not displace other approaches to medical science, such as molecular medicine and cell and developmental biology, but that evolutionary insights can combine with and complement established approaches to reduce suffering and save lives. Because we are on the cusp of so much new research and innovative insights, it is hard to estimate how much impact evolutionary thinking will have on medicine, but it is already clear that its potential is enormous. PMID:22933370

  1. Evolutionary contingency and SETI revisited

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cirkovic, Milan M.

    2014-07-01

    The well-known argument against the Search for ExtraTerrestrial Intelligence (SETI) due to George Gaylord Simpson is re-analyzed almost half a century later, in the light of our improved understanding of preconditions for the emergence of life and intelligence brought about by the ongoing "astrobiological revolution". Simpson's argument has been enormously influential, in particular in biological circles, and it arguably fueled the most serious opposition to SETI programmes and their funding. I argue that both proponents and opponents of Simpson's argument have occasionally mispresented its core content. Proponents often oversimplify it as just another consequence of biological contingency, thus leaving their position open to general arguments limiting the scope of contingency in evolution (such as the recent argument of Geerat Vermeij based on selection effects in the fossil record). They also tend to neglect that the argument has been presented as essentially atemporal, while referring to entities and processes that are likely to change over time; this has become even less justifiable as our astrobiological knowledge increased in recent years. Opponents have failed to see that the weaknesses in Simpson's position could be removed by restructuring of the argument; I suggest one way of such restructuring, envisioned long ago in the fictional context by Stanislaw Lem. While no firm consensus has emerged on the validity of Simpson's argument so far, I suggest that, contrary to the original motivation, today it is less an anti-SETI argument, and more an astrobiological research programme. In this research programme, SETI could be generalized into a platform for testing some of the deepest assumptions about evolutionary continuity and the relative role of contingency versus convergence on unprecedented spatial and temporal scales.

  2. Wolbachia versus dengue: Evolutionary forecasts.

    PubMed

    Bull, James J; Turelli, Michael

    2013-01-01

    A novel form of biological control is being applied to the dengue virus. The agent is the maternally transmitted bacterium Wolbachia, naturally absent from the main dengue vector, the mosquito Aedes aegypti. Three Wolbachia-based control strategies have been proposed. One is suppression of mosquito populations by large-scale releases of males incompatible with native females; this intervention requires ongoing releases. The other interventions transform wild mosquito populations with Wolbachia that spread via the frequency-dependent fitness advantage of Wolbachia-infected females; those interventions potentially require just a single, local release for area-wide disease control. One of these latter strategies uses Wolbachia that shortens mosquito life, indirectly preventing viral maturation/transmission. The other strategy uses Wolbachia that block viral transmission. All interventions can be undermined by viral, bacterial or mosquito evolution; viral virulence in humans may also evolve. We examine existing theory, experiments and comparative evidence to motivate predictions about evolutionary outcomes. (i) The life-shortening strategy seems the most likely to be thwarted by evolution. (ii) Mosquito suppression has a reasonable chance of working locally, at least in the short term, but long-term success over large areas is challenging. (iii) Dengue blocking faces strong selection for viral resistance but may well persist indefinitely at some level. Virulence evolution is not mathematically predictable, but comparative data provide no precedent for Wolbachia increasing dengue virulence. On balance, our analysis suggests that the considerable possible benefits of these technologies outweigh the known negatives, but the actual risk is largely unknown. PMID:24481199

  3. Evolutionary transgenomics: prospects and challenges

    PubMed Central

    Correa, Raul; Baum, David A.

    2015-01-01

    Many advances in our understanding of the genetic basis of species differences have arisen from transformation experiments, which allow us to study the effect of genes from one species (the donor) when placed in the genetic background of another species (the recipient). Such interspecies transformation experiments are usually focused on candidate genes – genes that, based on work in model systems, are suspected to be responsible for certain phenotypic differences between the donor and recipient species. We suggest that the high efficiency of transformation in a few plant species, most notably Arabidopsis thaliana, combined with the small size of typical plant genes and their cis-regulatory regions allow implementation of a screening strategy that does not depend upon a priori candidate gene identification. This approach, transgenomics, entails moving many large genomic inserts of a donor species into the wild type background of a recipient species and then screening for dominant phenotypic effects. As a proof of concept, we recently conducted a transgenomic screen that analyzed more than 1100 random, large genomic inserts of the Alabama gladecress Leavenworthia alabamica for dominant phenotypic effects in the A. thaliana background. This screen identified one insert that shortens fruit and decreases A. thaliana fertility. In this paper we discuss the principles of transgenomic screens and suggest methods to help minimize the frequencies of false positive and false negative results. We argue that, because transgenomics avoids committing in advance to candidate genes it has the potential to help us identify truly novel genes or cryptic functions of known genes. Given the valuable knowledge that is likely to be gained, we believe the time is ripe for the plant evolutionary community to invest in transgenomic screens, at least in the mustard family Brassicaceae where many species are amenable to efficient transformation. PMID:26579137

  4. Evolutionary Design of Controlled Structures

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Masters, Brett P.; Crawley, Edward F.

    1997-01-01

    Basic physical concepts of structural delay and transmissibility are provided for simple rod and beam structures. Investigations show the sensitivity of these concepts to differing controlled-structures variables, and to rational system modeling effects. An evolutionary controls/structures design method is developed. The basis of the method is an accurate model formulation for dynamic compensator optimization and Genetic Algorithm based updating of sensor/actuator placement and structural attributes. One and three dimensional examples from the literature are used to validate the method. Frequency domain interpretation of these controlled structure systems provide physical insight as to how the objective is optimized and consequently what is important in the objective. Several disturbance rejection type controls-structures systems are optimized for a stellar interferometer spacecraft application. The interferometric designs include closed loop tracking optics. Designs are generated for differing structural aspect ratios, differing disturbance attributes, and differing sensor selections. Physical limitations in achieving performance are given in terms of average system transfer function gains and system phase loss. A spacecraft-like optical interferometry system is investigated experimentally over several different optimized controlled structures configurations. Configurations represent common and not-so-common approaches to mitigating pathlength errors induced by disturbances of two different spectra. Results show that an optimized controlled structure for low frequency broadband disturbances achieves modest performance gains over a mass equivalent regular structure, while an optimized structure for high frequency narrow band disturbances is four times better in terms of root-mean-square pathlength. These results are predictable given the nature of the physical system and the optimization design variables. Fundamental limits on controlled performance are discussed

  5. Regulated cell death in AKI.

    PubMed

    Linkermann, Andreas; Chen, Guochun; Dong, Guie; Kunzendorf, Ulrich; Krautwald, Stefan; Dong, Zheng

    2014-12-01

    AKI is pathologically characterized by sublethal and lethal damage of renal tubules. Under these conditions, renal tubular cell death may occur by regulated necrosis (RN) or apoptosis. In the last two decades, tubular apoptosis has been shown in preclinical models and some clinical samples from patients with AKI. Mechanistically, apoptotic cell death in AKI may result from well described extrinsic and intrinsic pathways as well as ER stress. Central converging nodes of these pathways are mitochondria, which become fragmented and sensitized to membrane permeabilization in response to cellular stress, resulting in the release of cell death-inducing factors. Whereas apoptosis is known to be regulated, tubular necrosis was thought to occur by accident until recent work unveiled several RN subroutines, most prominently receptor-interacting protein kinase-dependent necroptosis and RN induced by mitochondrial permeability transition. Additionally, other cell death pathways, like pyroptosis and ferroptosis, may also be of pathophysiologic relevance in AKI. Combination therapy targeting multiple cell-death pathways may, therefore, provide maximal therapeutic benefits. PMID:24925726

  6. Glutathione in Cancer Cell Death

    PubMed Central

    Ortega, Angel L.; Mena, Salvador; Estrela, Jose M.

    2011-01-01

    Glutathione (L-γ-glutamyl-L-cysteinyl-glycine; GSH) in cancer cells is particularly relevant in the regulation of carcinogenic mechanisms; sensitivity against cytotoxic drugs, ionizing radiations, and some cytokines; DNA synthesis; and cell proliferation and death. The intracellular thiol redox state (controlled by GSH) is one of the endogenous effectors involved in regulating the mitochondrial permeability transition pore complex and, in consequence, thiol oxidation can be a causal factor in the mitochondrion-based mechanism that leads to cell death. Nevertheless GSH depletion is a common feature not only of apoptosis but also of other types of cell death. Indeed rates of GSH synthesis and fluxes regulate its levels in cellular compartments, and potentially influence switches among different mechanisms of death. How changes in gene expression, post-translational modifications of proteins, and signaling cascades are implicated will be discussed. Furthermore, this review will finally analyze whether GSH depletion may facilitate cancer cell death under in vivo conditions, and how this can be applied to cancer therapy. PMID:24212662

  7. Death, mourning, and medical progress.

    PubMed

    Callahan, Daniel

    2009-01-01

    A number of changes can be observed in the way people are coming to think about death, mourning, and medical progress. The palliative care movement was initiated some 30 years ago to respond to widespread ignorance or neglect of pain relief for the dying, which was then coming to public attention and becoming a key part of the nascent hospice movement. Yet if an important feature of the latter movement was acceptance of the reality of death, in recent years there has emerged a blending of clinical treatment and hospice care, a kind of compromise with the idea of death as an inevitability. Meanwhile, the combination of real progress in forestalling death and the matching medical and media hype about past and coming victories over mortality mean that death itself is coming to be seen as a biological accident, a contingent event, not a fixed given. People die now because of bad luck, indifference to good living habits, unfortunate genetics, and the like, or because they have the misfortune of dying before a cure for their fatal disease is at hand. Mourning likewise is changing. The old custom of the deceased being laid out in their living rooms, followed by a funeral, has long given way to a movement away from public funerals to private ones followed later by a memorial ceremony. No more dead bodies on display to grieve over, but soothing ceremonies of remembrance.

  8. Nonterrorist suicidal deaths involving explosives.

    PubMed

    Shields, Lisa B E; Hunsaker, Donna M; Hunsaker, John C; Humbert, Karl A

    2003-06-01

    Suicidal deaths involving explosives unconnected to terrorism are rare. The investigation of deaths from explosive devices requires a multidisciplinary collaborative effort, as demonstrated in this study. Reported are 2 cases of nonterrorist suicidal explosive-related deaths with massive craniocerebral destruction. The first case involves a 20-year-old man who was discovered in the basement apartment of his father's home seconds after an explosion. At the scene investigators recovered illegal improvised power-technique explosive devices, specifically M-100s, together with the victim's handwritten suicide note. The victim exhibited extensive craniofacial injuries, which medicolegal officials attributed to the decedent's intentionally placing one of these devices in his mouth. The second case involves a 46-year-old man who was found by his wife at his home. In the victim's facial wound, investigators recovered portions of a detonator blasting cap attached to electrical lead wires extending to his right hand. A suicide note was discovered at the scene. The appropriate collection of physical evidence at the scene of the explosion and a detailed examination of the victim's history is as important as documentation of injury patterns and recovery of trace evidence at autopsy. A basic understanding of the variety of explosive devices is also necessary. This investigatory approach greatly enhances the medicolegal death investigator's ability to reconstruct the fatal event as a means of separating accidental and homicidal explosive-related deaths from this uncommon form of suicide.

  9. Humanism and multiculturalism: an evolutionary alliance.

    PubMed

    Comas-Diaz, Lillian

    2012-12-01

    Humanism and multiculturalism are partners in an evolutionary alliance. Humanistic and multicultural psychotherapies have historically influenced each other. Humanism represents the third force in psychotherapy, while multiculturalism embodies the fourth developmental stage. Multiculturalism embraces humanistic values grounded in collective and social justice contexts. Examples of multicultural humanistic constructs include contextualism, holism, and liberation. Certainly, the multicultural-humanistic connection is a necessary shift in the evolution of psychotherapy. Humanism and multiculturalism participate in the development of an inclusive and evolutionary psychotherapy. PMID:23205825

  10. Evolutionary Game Theory Analysis of Tumor Progression

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wu, Amy; Liao, David; Sturm, James; Austin, Robert

    2014-03-01

    Evolutionary game theory applied to two interacting cell populations can yield quantitative prediction of the future densities of the two cell populations based on the initial interaction terms. We will discuss how in a complex ecology that evolutionary game theory successfully predicts the future densities of strains of stromal and cancer cells (multiple myeloma), and discuss the possible clinical use of such analysis for predicting cancer progression. Supported by the National Science Foundation and the National Cancer Institute.

  11. Ecological aspects of the evolutionary processes.

    PubMed

    Bock, Walter J

    2003-03-01

    Darwin in his On the Origin of species made it clear that evolutionary change depends on the combined action of two different causes, the first being the origin of genetically based phenotypic variation in the individual organisms comprising the population and the second being the action of selective agents of the external environment placing demands on the individual organisms. For over a century following Darwin, most evolutionists focused on the origin of inherited variation and its transmission; many workers continue to regard genetics to be the core of evolutionary theory. Far less attention has been given to the exact nature of the selective agents with most evolutionists still treating this cause imprecisely to the detriment of our understanding of both nomological and historical evolutionary theory. Darwin was vague in the meaning of his new concept of "Natural Selection," using it interchangeably as one of the causes for evolutionary change and as the final outcome (= evolutionary change). In 1930, natural selection was defined clearly as "non-random, differential reproduction of genes" by R. Fisher and J.B.S. Haldane which is a statement of the outcome of evolutionary process and which omits mention of the causes bringing about this change. Evolutionists quickly accepted this outcome definition of natural selection, and have used interchangeably selection both as a cause and as the result of evolutionary change, causing great confusion. Herein, the details will be discussed of how the external environment (i.e., the environment-phenotype interaction) serves as selective agents and exerts demands on the phenotypic organisms. Included are the concepts of fitness and of the components of fitness (= adaptations) which are respectively (a) survival, (b) direct reproductive and (c) indirect reproductive features. Finally, it will be argued that historical-narrative analyses of organisms, including classification and phylogenetic history, are possible only with

  12. Humanism and multiculturalism: an evolutionary alliance.

    PubMed

    Comas-Diaz, Lillian

    2012-12-01

    Humanism and multiculturalism are partners in an evolutionary alliance. Humanistic and multicultural psychotherapies have historically influenced each other. Humanism represents the third force in psychotherapy, while multiculturalism embodies the fourth developmental stage. Multiculturalism embraces humanistic values grounded in collective and social justice contexts. Examples of multicultural humanistic constructs include contextualism, holism, and liberation. Certainly, the multicultural-humanistic connection is a necessary shift in the evolution of psychotherapy. Humanism and multiculturalism participate in the development of an inclusive and evolutionary psychotherapy.

  13. Life Experience with Death: Relation to Death Attitudes and to the Use of Death-Related Memories

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Bluck, Susan; Dirk, Judith; Mackay, Michael M.; Hux, Ashley

    2008-01-01

    The study examines the relation of death experience to death attitudes and to autobiographical memory use. Participants (N = 52) completed standard death attitude measures and wrote narratives about a death-related autobiographical memory and (for comparison) a memory of a low point. Self-ratings of the memory narratives were used to assess their…

  14. Characterizing behavioural 'characters': an evolutionary framework.

    PubMed

    Araya-Ajoy, Yimen G; Dingemanse, Niels J

    2014-02-01

    Biologists often study phenotypic evolution assuming that phenotypes consist of a set of quasi-independent units that have been shaped by selection to accomplish a particular function. In the evolutionary literature, such quasi-independent functional units are called 'evolutionary characters', and a framework based on evolutionary principles has been developed to characterize them. This framework mainly focuses on 'fixed' characters, i.e. those that vary exclusively between individuals. In this paper, we introduce multi-level variation and thereby expand the framework to labile characters, focusing on behaviour as a worked example. We first propose a concept of 'behavioural characters' based on the original evolutionary character concept. We then detail how integration of variation between individuals (cf. 'personality') and within individuals (cf. 'individual plasticity') into the framework gives rise to a whole suite of novel testable predictions about the evolutionary character concept. We further propose a corresponding statistical methodology to test whether observed behaviours should be considered expressions of a hypothesized evolutionary character. We illustrate the application of our framework by characterizing the behavioural character 'aggressiveness' in wild great tits, Parus major.

  15. Evolutionary cell biology: two origins, one objective.

    PubMed

    Lynch, Michael; Field, Mark C; Goodson, Holly V; Malik, Harmit S; Pereira-Leal, José B; Roos, David S; Turkewitz, Aaron P; Sazer, Shelley

    2014-12-01

    All aspects of biological diversification ultimately trace to evolutionary modifications at the cellular level. This central role of cells frames the basic questions as to how cells work and how cells come to be the way they are. Although these two lines of inquiry lie respectively within the traditional provenance of cell biology and evolutionary biology, a comprehensive synthesis of evolutionary and cell-biological thinking is lacking. We define evolutionary cell biology as the fusion of these two eponymous fields with the theoretical and quantitative branches of biochemistry, biophysics, and population genetics. The key goals are to develop a mechanistic understanding of general evolutionary processes, while specifically infusing cell biology with an evolutionary perspective. The full development of this interdisciplinary field has the potential to solve numerous problems in diverse areas of biology, including the degree to which selection, effectively neutral processes, historical contingencies, and/or constraints at the chemical and biophysical levels dictate patterns of variation for intracellular features. These problems can now be examined at both the within- and among-species levels, with single-cell methodologies even allowing quantification of variation within genotypes. Some results from this emerging field have already had a substantial impact on cell biology, and future findings will significantly influence applications in agriculture, medicine, environmental science, and synthetic biology.

  16. Extinction as the loss of evolutionary history

    PubMed Central

    Erwin, Douglas H.

    2008-01-01

    Current plant and animal diversity preserves at most 1–2% of the species that have existed over the past 600 million years. But understanding the evolutionary impact of these extinctions requires a variety of metrics. The traditional measurement is loss of taxa (species or a higher category) but in the absence of phylogenetic information it is difficult to distinguish the evolutionary depth of different patterns of extinction: the same species loss can encompass very different losses of evolutionary history. Furthermore, both taxic and phylogenetic measures are poor metrics of morphologic disparity. Other measures of lost diversity include: functional diversity, architectural components, behavioral and social repertoires, and developmental strategies. The canonical five mass extinctions of the Phanerozoic reveals the loss of different, albeit sometimes overlapping, aspects of loss of evolutionary history. The end-Permian mass extinction (252 Ma) reduced all measures of diversity. The same was not true of other episodes, differences that may reflect their duration and structure. The construction of biodiversity reflects similarly uneven contributions to each of these metrics. Unraveling these contributions requires greater attention to feedbacks on biodiversity and the temporal variability in their contribution to evolutionary history. Taxic diversity increases after mass extinctions, but the response by other aspects of evolutionary history is less well studied. Earlier views of postextinction biotic recovery as the refilling of empty ecospace fail to capture the dynamics of this diversity increase. PMID:18695248

  17. Assessment of student conceptions of evolutionary trees

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Blacquiere, Luke

    Biologists use evolutionary trees to depict hypotheses about the relationships among taxa. Trees possess lines that represent lineages, internal nodes that represent where lineages become evolutionarily isolated from one another and terminal nodes that represent the taxa under consideration. Interpreting a tree (i.e., "tree-thinking") is an important skill for biologists yet many students struggle when reading evolutionary trees. Common documented misconceptions include using morphological similarity, internal node counting or terminal node proximity, instead of identifying the internal node that represents a most recent common ancestor (MRCA), to determine relationships among taxa. I developed an instrument to assess whether students were using common ancestry or another, non-scientific, strategy to determine relationships among taxa. The study is the first to explicitly test hypotheses about how students approach reading evolutionary trees. To test the hypotheses an instrument was developed. The instrument is the first reliable and valid assessment testing student understanding of how to use most recent common ancestor to interpret evolutionary relationships in tree diagrams. Instructors can use the instrument as a diagnostic tool enabling them to help students learn this challenging concept. This study shows that, contrary to the assertion that students hold misconceptions about evolutionary trees made in the literature, students do not consistently use erroneous strategies when interpreting trees. This study suggests that a constructivist perspective of cognitive structure describes students' conception of evolutionary trees more closely than a misconception perspective.

  18. Evolution of apoptosis-like programmed cell death in unicellular protozoan parasites.

    PubMed

    Kaczanowski, Szymon; Sajid, Mohammed; Reece, Sarah E

    2011-01-01

    Apoptosis-like programmed cell death (PCD) has recently been described in multiple taxa of unicellular protists, including the protozoan parasites Plasmodium, Trypanosoma and Leishmania. Apoptosis-like PCD in protozoan parasites shares a number of morphological features with programmed cell death in multicellular organisms. However, both the evolutionary explanations and mechanisms involved in parasite PCD are poorly understood. Explaining why unicellular organisms appear to undergo 'suicide' is a challenge for evolutionary biology and uncovering death executors and pathways is a challenge for molecular and cell biology. Bioinformatics has the potential to integrate these approaches by revealing homologies in the PCD machinery of diverse taxa and evaluating their evolutionary trajectories. As the molecular mechanisms of apoptosis in model organisms are well characterised, and recent data suggest similar mechanisms operate in protozoan parasites, key questions can now be addressed. These questions include: which elements of apoptosis machinery appear to be shared between protozoan parasites and multicellular taxa and, have these mechanisms arisen through convergent or divergent evolution? We use bioinformatics to address these questions and our analyses suggest that apoptosis mechanisms in protozoan parasites and other taxa have diverged during their evolution, that some apoptosis factors are shared across taxa whilst others have been replaced by proteins with similar biochemical activities.

  19. Experiencing death: an insider's perspective.

    PubMed

    Paulson, Steve; Fenwick, Peter; Neal, Mary; Nelson, Kevin; Parnia, Sam

    2014-11-01

    For millennia, human beings have wondered what happens after death. What is the first-person experience of dying and being brought back to life? Technological advances in resuscitation science have now added an intriguing new chapter to the literature of out-of-body or near-death experiences by eliciting detailed and vivid accounts of those who have approached the threshold of death. Steve Paulson, executive producer and host of To the Best of Our Knowledge, moderated a discussion that included neurologist Kevin Nelson, neuropsychiatrist Peter Fenwick, emergency medicine expert Sam Parnia, and orthopedic surgeon and drowning survivor Mary Neal; they share some remarkable stories and discuss how they analyze such experiences in light of their own backgrounds and training. The following is an edited transcript of the discussion from December 11, 2013, 7:00-8:30 PM, at the New York Academy of Sciences in New York City.

  20. Sudden death of effective entanglement

    SciTech Connect

    Roszak, K.; Horodecki, P.; Horodecki, R.

    2010-04-15

    Sudden death of entanglement is a well-known effect resulting from the finite volume of separable states. We study the case when the observer has a limited measurement capability and analyze the effective entanglement (i.e., entanglement minimized over the output data). We show that in the well-defined system of two quantum dots monitored by single-electron transistors, one may observe a sudden death of effective entanglement when real, physical entanglement is still alive. For certain measurement setups, this occurs even for initial states for which sudden death of physical entanglement is not possible at all. The principles of the analysis may be applied to other analogous scenarios, such as estimation of the parameters arising from quantum process tomography.

  1. Deaths from asphyxia among fisherman.

    PubMed

    Glass, R I; Ford, R; Allegra, D T; Markel, H L

    1980-11-14

    On July 19, 1978, two crewmen aboard a shrimp trawler died and the captain was hospitalized after being exposed to a toxic atmosphere in the ship's hold. Examination of the Coast Guard records of deaths at sea since 1970 led to the identification of 11 incidents involving 32 deaths by asphyxia. All deaths occurred in the unventilated holds of ships in warm waters and during warm months of the year. Asphyxia in the unventilated holds of ships is an underrecognized hazard. We recommend that fishermen be informed of this hazard, that ships' holds be ventilated before they are entered, and that safety protocols be provided to rescuers of persons found unconscious in a ship's hold.

  2. Cervical cancer: a preventable death.

    PubMed

    Nour, Nawal M

    2009-01-01

    Cervical cancer kills 260,000 women annually, and nearly 85% of these deaths occur in developing nations, where it is the leading cause of cancer deaths in women. Disparities of health and poverty play a large role in this high mortality rate. Whereas routine Papanicolaou and human papillomavirus (HPV) testing has dramatically reduced cervical cancer deaths in Western nations, without proper infrastructure, facilities, and medical training, the rates of cervical cancer in developing nations will remain high. Studies on HPV DNA testing and the low-technology method of "screen and treat" are promising. In addition, reducing the cost and increasing the availability of HPV vaccines in developing nations brings hope and promise to the next generation of women. PMID:20111660

  3. Cell Death in Genome Evolution

    PubMed Central

    Teng, Xinchen; Hardwick, J. Marie

    2015-01-01

    Inappropriate survival of abnormal cells underlies tumorigenesis. Most discoveries about programmed cell death have come from studying model organisms. Revisiting the experimental contexts that inspired these discoveries helps explain confounding biases that inevitably accompany such discoveries. Amending early biases has added a newcomer to the collection of cell death models. Analysis of gene-dependent death in yeast revealed the surprising influence of single gene mutations on subsequent eukaryotic genome evolution. Similar events may influence the selection for mutations during early tumorigenesis. The possibility that an early random mutation might drive the selection for a cancer driver mutation is conceivable but difficult to demonstrate. This was tested in yeast, revealing that mutation of almost any gene appears to specify the selection for a new second mutation. Some human tumors contain pairs of mutant genes homologous to co-occurring mutant genes in yeast. Here we consider how yeast again provide novel insights into tumorigenesis. PMID:25725369

  4. Deaths of teenagers in car crashes: a child death review.

    PubMed

    Jones, Sarah J; Heatman, Beverley

    2016-08-01

    MVCs are a leading cause of death and disability for teenagers. In Wales, a child death review process has been established to carry out thematic reviews of deaths; this approach is believed to highlight opportunities for prevention that individual case review could not. Cases were 13-year-old to 17-year-old Welsh residents who died as car drivers or passengers between 1 January 2006 and 31 December 2010. An expert panel was convened to review these cases. 28 MVCs occurred and 34 13-17 year olds died; 24 males, 10 females. 51 vehicles were involved; 23 driven by 17-year-old to 19-year-old males. 19 of the 28 MVCs occurred between 21:00 and 05:00. The risk factors identified were consistent with global research on MVC deaths and injuries to teenagers. However, there is a lack of effective interventions to tackle these in the UK. It is recommended that the implementation of Graduated Driver Licensing is considered. PMID:26251467

  5. Constructions of Death and Levels of Death Fear.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Epting, Franz R.; And Others

    1979-01-01

    Fear of death was measured in 60 subjects at conscious, fantasy and nonconscious levels using two different instruments. Most individuals were seen as denying fear at a conscious level, being ambivalent at mid-level, and exhibiting a fear pattern at the nonconscious level. (BP)

  6. Psychiatry and the death penalty.

    PubMed

    Kastrup, M

    1988-12-01

    Mentally ill people are not to be judged by the same rules as the mentally fit. Prisoners evaluated medically unfit for execution must undergo psychiatric treatment until their mental health is restored. Psychiatrists are placed in an ethical dilemma when asked to judge the mental health of prisoners on death row. A high prevalence of psychiatric and neurological disorders are reported on death row. Health professionals have an important role in implementing codes of ethics prohibiting any involvement in the execution process. Resolutions have already been passed by several associations including the World Medical Association, the American Psychiatric Association and Nordic medical associations.

  7. Dealing with death and dying.

    PubMed

    McFarland, K F; Rollins, E C; Gonzalez, M F; Rhoades, D R

    1994-03-01

    We instituted two thanatology seminars for medical students and residents which emphasized feelings more than objective data. The seminars began with students filling out a death certificate on themselves. Eighty-four per cent predicted that their own probable cause of death would be from an acute illness. Discussion and reflection on this experience helped them realize how difficult it would be to deal with a chronic illness. By answering a question about what they were most grateful for, they became aware that they valued family and friends most highly. We believe that this experience legitimized feelings which form the basis of empathy.

  8. Evolutionary Biology Instruction: What Students Gain from Learning through Inquiry.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Dremock, Fae, Ed.

    2002-01-01

    This bulletin features articles on real world evolutionary biology, revolutionary classroom science, a review of new curricula in evolutionary biology, and the use of case studies to illustrate points in evolutionary biology. The articles are: (1) "'Real World' Evolutionary Biology: A Pragmatic Quest. Interview with BioQUEST's John Jungck" (Harvey…

  9. 22 CFR 192.51 - Death benefit.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2012 CFR

    2012-04-01

    ... 22 Foreign Relations 1 2012-04-01 2012-04-01 false Death benefit. 192.51 Section 192.51 Foreign... or Death § 192.51 Death benefit. (a) The Secretary of State or Agency Head may provide for payment, by the employing agency, of a death benefit to the surviving dependents of any eligible...

  10. 38 CFR 21.7280 - Death benefit.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2010 CFR

    2010-07-01

    ... 38 Pensions, Bonuses, and Veterans' Relief 2 2010-07-01 2010-07-01 false Death benefit. 21.7280... Bill-Active Duty) Approval of Courses § 21.7280 Death benefit. (a) Overview. VA will pay a death benefit under 38 U.S.C. ch. 30 when an individual's death meets the criteria of this section;...

  11. 38 CFR 21.7280 - Death benefit.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2012 CFR

    2012-07-01

    ... 38 Pensions, Bonuses, and Veterans' Relief 2 2012-07-01 2012-07-01 false Death benefit. 21.7280... Bill-Active Duty) Approval of Courses § 21.7280 Death benefit. (a) Overview. VA will pay a death benefit under 38 U.S.C. ch. 30 when an individual's death meets the criteria of this section;...

  12. 38 CFR 3.460 - Death pension.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2011 CFR

    2011-07-01

    ... 38 Pensions, Bonuses, and Veterans' Relief 1 2011-07-01 2011-07-01 false Death pension. 3.460..., Compensation, and Dependency and Indemnity Compensation Apportionments § 3.460 Death pension. Death pension... individual case in accordance with § 3.451. (b) Section 306 and old-law death pension. Appointment...

  13. 38 CFR 3.460 - Death pension.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2014 CFR

    2014-07-01

    ... 38 Pensions, Bonuses, and Veterans' Relief 1 2014-07-01 2014-07-01 false Death pension. 3.460..., Compensation, and Dependency and Indemnity Compensation Apportionments § 3.460 Death pension. Death pension... individual case in accordance with § 3.451. (b) Section 306 and old-law death pension. Appointment...

  14. 22 CFR 192.51 - Death benefit.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2014 CFR

    2014-04-01

    ... 22 Foreign Relations 1 2014-04-01 2014-04-01 false Death benefit. 192.51 Section 192.51 Foreign... or Death § 192.51 Death benefit. (a) The Secretary of State or Agency Head may provide for payment, by the employing agency, of a death benefit to the surviving dependents of any eligible...

  15. 22 CFR 192.51 - Death benefit.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2010 CFR

    2010-04-01

    ... 22 Foreign Relations 1 2010-04-01 2010-04-01 false Death benefit. 192.51 Section 192.51 Foreign... or Death § 192.51 Death benefit. (a) The Secretary of State or Agency Head may provide for payment, by the employing agency, of a death benefit to the surviving dependents of any eligible...

  16. 22 CFR 192.51 - Death benefit.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2011 CFR

    2011-04-01

    ... 22 Foreign Relations 1 2011-04-01 2011-04-01 false Death benefit. 192.51 Section 192.51 Foreign... or Death § 192.51 Death benefit. (a) The Secretary of State or Agency Head may provide for payment, by the employing agency, of a death benefit to the surviving dependents of any eligible...

  17. 38 CFR 3.460 - Death pension.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2010 CFR

    2010-07-01

    ... 38 Pensions, Bonuses, and Veterans' Relief 1 2010-07-01 2010-07-01 false Death pension. 3.460..., Compensation, and Dependency and Indemnity Compensation Apportionments § 3.460 Death pension. Death pension... individual case in accordance with § 3.451. (b) Section 306 and old-law death pension. Appointment...

  18. 38 CFR 3.460 - Death pension.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2013 CFR

    2013-07-01

    ... 38 Pensions, Bonuses, and Veterans' Relief 1 2013-07-01 2013-07-01 false Death pension. 3.460..., Compensation, and Dependency and Indemnity Compensation Apportionments § 3.460 Death pension. Death pension... individual case in accordance with § 3.451. (b) Section 306 and old-law death pension. Appointment...

  19. 38 CFR 3.460 - Death pension.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2012 CFR

    2012-07-01

    ... 38 Pensions, Bonuses, and Veterans' Relief 1 2012-07-01 2012-07-01 false Death pension. 3.460..., Compensation, and Dependency and Indemnity Compensation Apportionments § 3.460 Death pension. Death pension... individual case in accordance with § 3.451. (b) Section 306 and old-law death pension. Appointment...

  20. 38 CFR 21.7280 - Death benefit.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2013 CFR

    2013-07-01

    ... 38 Pensions, Bonuses, and Veterans' Relief 2 2013-07-01 2013-07-01 false Death benefit. 21.7280... Bill-Active Duty) Approval of Courses § 21.7280 Death benefit. (a) Overview. VA will pay a death benefit under 38 U.S.C. ch. 30 when an individual's death meets the criteria of this section;...

  1. 38 CFR 21.7280 - Death benefit.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2011 CFR

    2011-07-01

    ... 38 Pensions, Bonuses, and Veterans' Relief 2 2011-07-01 2011-07-01 false Death benefit. 21.7280... Bill-Active Duty) Approval of Courses § 21.7280 Death benefit. (a) Overview. VA will pay a death benefit under 38 U.S.C. ch. 30 when an individual's death meets the criteria of this section;...

  2. 38 CFR 21.7280 - Death benefit.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2014 CFR

    2014-07-01

    ... 38 Pensions, Bonuses, and Veterans' Relief 2 2014-07-01 2014-07-01 false Death benefit. 21.7280... Bill-Active Duty) Approval of Courses § 21.7280 Death benefit. (a) Overview. VA will pay a death benefit under 38 U.S.C. ch. 30 when an individual's death meets the criteria of this section;...

  3. 22 CFR 192.51 - Death benefit.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2013 CFR

    2013-04-01

    ... 22 Foreign Relations 1 2013-04-01 2013-04-01 false Death benefit. 192.51 Section 192.51 Foreign... or Death § 192.51 Death benefit. (a) The Secretary of State or Agency Head may provide for payment, by the employing agency, of a death benefit to the surviving dependents of any eligible...

  4. Can Suicide Be a Good Death?

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Lester, David

    2006-01-01

    The issue of whether suicide can be a good death was separated into two different questions: (1) can suicide be an appropriate death, and (2) can suicide be a rational death? Several definitions of an "appropriate" death were proposed, and suicide was seen as potentially appropriate. Similarly, several criteria for rationality were proposed and…

  5. Metaphysical Beliefs as Predictors of Death Anxiety.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Naidu, R. K.; Sinha, Ambalika

    1992-01-01

    Investigated impact of four metaphysical beliefs (existence of God, attributes of God, afterlife, consequences of suffering) on death anxiety. Householders (n=120), one-half of whom lived in high exposure to death sight areas, responded to pictures depicting death and nondeath scenes to measure death anxiety. Subjects from low exposure areas…

  6. Multidimensional Treatment of Fear of Death.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Hoelter, Jon W.

    1979-01-01

    Presents a multidimensional conception of fear of death and provides subscales for measuring suggested dimensions (fear of the dying process, of the dead, of being destroyed, for significant others, of the unknown, of conscious death, for body after death, and of premature death). Evidence for construct validity is provided. (Author/BEF)

  7. Death Perception in People with Suicidal Tendencies.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    George, Veronique; Dussaucy, Edith

    The perception of death gradually develops in a child's mind, reaching maturity at about 8 or 9 years of age. A mature death concept usually means a definition which includes the perception of death as a natural process, its finality, its irreversibility, and its universality. A study was undertaken to improve knowledge about the death concept.…

  8. Evolutionary dynamics of microsatellite DNA.

    PubMed

    Schlötterer, C

    2000-09-01

    polymorphic markers are available. Nevertheless, the application of microsatellites to population genetic questions requires a more detailed understanding of the mutation processes of microsatellite DNA as the evolutionary time frames covered in population genetics are often too long to allow novel microsatellite mutations to be ignored. Additional interest in the evolution of microsatellite DNA comes from the discovery that trinucleotide repeats, a special class of microsatellites, are involved in human neurodegenerative diseases (e.g., fragile X and Huntington's disease). A detailed understanding of the processes underlying microsatellite instability is therefore an important contribution toward a better understanding of these human neurodegenerative diseases.

  9. Deaths due to Unknown Foodborne Agents

    PubMed Central

    2004-01-01

    This study reviews the available evidence on unknown pathogenic agents transmitted in food and examines the methods that have been used to estimate that such agents cause 3,400 deaths per year in the United States. The estimate of deaths was derived from hospital discharge and death certificate data on deaths attributed to gastroenteritis of unknown cause. Fatal illnesses due to unknown foodborne agents do not always involve gastroenteritis, and gastroenteritis may not be accurately diagnosed or reported on hospital charts or death certificates. The death estimate consequently omitted deaths from unknown foodborne agents that do not cause gastroenteritis and likely overstated the number of deaths from agents that cause gastroenteritis. Although the number of deaths from unknown foodborne agents is uncertain, the possible economic cost of these deaths is so large that increased efforts to identify the causal agents are warranted. PMID:15498153

  10. Evolutionary theory of ageing and the problem of correlated Gompertz parameters.

    PubMed

    Burger, Oskar; Missov, Trifon I

    2016-11-01

    The Gompertz mortality model is often used to evaluate evolutionary theories of ageing, such as the Medawar-Williams' hypothesis that high extrinsic mortality leads to faster ageing. However, fits of the Gompertz mortality model to data often find the opposite result that mortality is negatively correlated with the rate of ageing. This negative correlation has been independently discovered in several taxa and is known in actuarial studies of ageing as the Strehler-Mildvan correlation. We examine the role of mortality selection in determining late-life variation in susceptibility to death, which has been suggested to be the cause of this negative correlation. We demonstrate that fixed-frailty models that account for heterogeneity in frailty do not remove the correlation and that the correlation is an inherent statistical property of the Gompertz distribution. Linking actuarial and biological rates of ageing will continue to be a pressing challenge, but the Strehler-Mildvan correlation itself should not be used to diagnose any biological, physiological, or evolutionary process. These findings resolve some key tensions between theory and data that affect evolutionary and biological studies of ageing and mortality. Tests of evolutionary theories of ageing should include direct measures of physiological performance or condition.

  11. Transmissible cancers in an evolutionary context.

    PubMed

    Ujvari, Beata; Papenfuss, Anthony T; Belov, Katherine

    2016-07-01

    Cancer is an evolutionary and ecological process in which complex interactions between tumour cells and their environment share many similarities with organismal evolution. Tumour cells with highest adaptive potential have a selective advantage over less fit cells. Naturally occurring transmissible cancers provide an ideal model system for investigating the evolutionary arms race between cancer cells and their surrounding micro-environment and macro-environment. However, the evolutionary landscapes in which contagious cancers reside have not been subjected to comprehensive investigation. Here, we provide a multifocal analysis of transmissible tumour progression and discuss the selection forces that shape it. We demonstrate that transmissible cancers adapt to both their micro-environment and macro-environment, and evolutionary theories applied to organisms are also relevant to these unique diseases. The three naturally occurring transmissible cancers, canine transmissible venereal tumour (CTVT) and Tasmanian devil facial tumour disease (DFTD) and the recently discovered clam leukaemia, exhibit different evolutionary phases: (i) CTVT, the oldest naturally occurring cell line is remarkably stable; (ii) DFTD exhibits the signs of stepwise cancer evolution; and (iii) clam leukaemia shows genetic instability. While all three contagious cancers carry the signature of ongoing and fairly recent adaptations to selective forces, CTVT appears to have reached an evolutionary stalemate with its host, while DFTD and the clam leukaemia appear to be still at a more dynamic phase of their evolution. Parallel investigation of contagious cancer genomes and transcriptomes and of their micro-environment and macro-environment could shed light on the selective forces shaping tumour development at different time points: during the progressive phase and at the endpoint. A greater understanding of transmissible cancers from an evolutionary ecology perspective will provide novel avenues for

  12. Regulated Cell Death in AKI

    PubMed Central

    Chen, Guochun; Dong, Guie; Kunzendorf, Ulrich; Krautwald, Stefan

    2014-01-01

    AKI is pathologically characterized by sublethal and lethal damage of renal tubules. Under these conditions, renal tubular cell death may occur by regulated necrosis (RN) or apoptosis. In the last two decades, tubular apoptosis has been shown in preclinical models and some clinical samples from patients with AKI. Mechanistically, apoptotic cell death in AKI may result from well described extrinsic and intrinsic pathways as well as ER stress. Central converging nodes of these pathways are mitochondria, which become fragmented and sensitized to membrane permeabilization in response to cellular stress, resulting in the release of cell death–inducing factors. Whereas apoptosis is known to be regulated, tubular necrosis was thought to occur by accident until recent work unveiled several RN subroutines, most prominently receptor-interacting protein kinase–dependent necroptosis and RN induced by mitochondrial permeability transition. Additionally, other cell death pathways, like pyroptosis and ferroptosis, may also be of pathophysiologic relevance in AKI. Combination therapy targeting multiple cell-death pathways may, therefore, provide maximal therapeutic benefits. PMID:24925726

  13. Ordinal Position and Death Concerns.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Eckstein, Daniel; Tobacyk, Jerome

    The relationship between birth order and how a person deals with death is investigated. Both theoretical and empirical evidence indicates that birth order influences how a person deals with life tasks. First-borns appear more achievement-oriented than their younger siblings, as exemplified by the fact that disproportionately greater numbers of…

  14. Anaphylactic deaths in asthmatic patients.

    PubMed

    Settipane, G A

    1989-01-01

    We reviewed seven documented deaths to peanuts and two near deaths. We excluded hearsay undocumented deaths to peanuts. Peanut allergy is one of the most common food allergies and probably the most common cause of death by food anaphylaxis in the United States. About one-third of peanut-sensitive patients have severe reactions to peanuts. Asthmatics with peanut sensitivity appear more likely to develop fatal reactions probably because of the exquisite sensitivity that asthamatics have to chemical mediators of anaphylaxis. Severe reactions occur within a few minutes of ingestion and these patients must carry preloaded epinephrine syringes, antihistamines, and medic-alert bracelets. Treatment should include repeated doses of epinephrine, antihistamines and corticosteroids as well as availability of oxygen, mechanical methods to open airways, vasopressors, and intravenous fluids. Hidden sources of peanuts such as chili, egg rolls, cookies, candy, and pastry should be recognized and identified. Scratch/prick test to peanuts are highly diagnostic. Peanut is one of the most sensitive food allergens known requiring only a few milligrams to cause a reaction. In some individuals, even contact of peanut with unbroken skin can cause an immediate local reaction. Unfortunately, peanut reaction is not outgrown and remains a life-long threat.

  15. Reconstructing Death in Postmodern Society.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Kastenbaum, Robert

    1993-01-01

    Examines interaction between emerging thanatological movement and its sociohistorical context. Notes that thanatology will take on new shape as individuals and society attempt to cope with postmodernistic forces and deconstructive mentality. Considers prospect for authentic solidarity against distress in reconstructed death system. (Author/NB)

  16. Navigating the valley of death

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dacey, James

    2014-11-01

    Taking an innovation from the lab to the market is hard in any discipline, but physics start-ups face some unique challenges crossing the so-called "valley of death". James Dacey speaks to scientists and business professionals in the Boston area of the US who have dared to take on this journey.

  17. Attitudes on Death and Dying.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Andrus, Charles E.

    This paper explored attitudes toward death and dying revealed through interviews with members of the clergy, the medical profession, funeral directors, nursing home residents, and selected others. The sampling was small and results are not intended to be representative of the groups to which these people belong. Rather, the study may be used as a…

  18. The Experience of Near Death

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Sabom, M. B.; Kreutziger, S.

    1977-01-01

    Reported phenomena occurring in people encountering near-death situations have recently stimulated considerable public interest. In an informal survey, few professionals who care for critically ill patients were aware of these occurrences. Approximately 50 patients with documented near-fatal encounters were interviewed to confirm the existence and…

  19. Psychology and death. Meaningful rediscovery.

    PubMed

    Feifel, H

    1990-04-01

    The place of death in psychology is reviewed historically. Leading causes for its being slighted as an area of investigation during psychology's early years are presented. Reasons for its rediscovery in the mid-1950s as a legitimate sector for scientific inquiry are then discussed, along with some vicissitudes encountered in carrying out research in the field. This is followed by a description of principal empirical findings, clinical perceptions, and perspectives emerging from work in the thanatological realm. The probability that such urgent social issues as abortion, acquired immunodeficiency syndrome (AIDS), and euthanasia, and such destructive behaviors as drug abuse, alcoholism, and certain acts of violence are associated with attitudes toward death offers a challenge to psychology to enhance the vitality of human response to maladaptive conduct and loss. Recognition of personal mortality is a major entryway to self-knowledge. Although death is manifestly too complex to be the special sphere of any one discipline, psychology's position as an arena in which humanist and physicist-engineer cultures intersect provides us with a meaningful opportunity to advance our comprehension of how death can serve life. PMID:2186680

  20. Death Penalty Issues Following Atkins

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Patton, James R.; Keyes, Denis W.

    2006-01-01

    In light of the U.S. Supreme Court's 2002 landmark decision in "Atkins v. Virginia," a diagnosis of mild mental retardation has taken on a life and death significance for people who are the most deeply involved in criminal justice. As such, each aspect of the mental retardation definition (American Association on Mental Retardation, 2002) is a…

  1. Reading Guidance: Death and Grief.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Smith, Alice Gullen

    1989-01-01

    Gives guidelines for the librarian using reading guidance (similar to bibliotherapy). Provides a nine-item annotated bibliography of novels for children and adolescents on the subject of death and grief. Appends an embryo list of categories suitable for content analysis of any file librarians might wish to keep on books suitable for use in this…

  2. Confidential inquiry into malaria deaths.

    PubMed Central

    Dürrheim, D. N.; Frieremans, S.; Kruger, P.; Mabuza, A.; de Bruyn, J. C.

    1999-01-01

    The results of a confidential inquiry into mortality attributed to malaria in South Africa's Mpumalanga Province are being used to guide the design of strategies for improving the management of cases and reducing the probability of deaths from the disease. PMID:10212518

  3. Caspase-independent cell deaths.

    PubMed

    Lockshin, Richard A; Zakeri, Zahra

    2002-12-01

    A very common and the best understood of the mechanisms of physiological cell death is apoptosis, resulting from the activation, through either of two primary pathways, of site-specific proteases called caspases. There are, however, many other routes to cell death, prominently including autophagy and proteasomal degradation of critical constituents of cells. These routes are frequently seen in experimental situations in which initiator or effector caspases are inhibited or blocked through genetic means, but they are also encountered during normal physiological and pathological processes. Most frequently, autophagic or proteasomal degradation is used to eliminate massive cytoplasm of very large cells, especially post-mitotic cells, and these pathways are prominent even though caspase genes, messages, and pro-enzymes are found in the cells. These forms of cell death are fully physiological and not simply a default pathway for a defective cell; and they are distinct from necrosis. We do not yet understand the extent to which the pathways are linked, what mechanisms trigger the caspase-independent deaths, and how the choices are made.

  4. Human evolutionary history and contemporary evolutionary theory provide insight when assessing cultural group selection.

    PubMed

    Fuentes, Agustin; Kissel, Marc

    2016-01-01

    Richerson et al. provide a much needed roadmap for assessing cultural group selection (CGS) theory and for applying it to understanding variation between contemporary human groups. However, the current proposal lacks connection to relevant evidence from the human evolutionary record and requires a better integration with contemporary evolutionary theory. The article also misapplies the F st statistic. PMID:27562510

  5. EvoluCode: Evolutionary Barcodes as a Unifying Framework for Multilevel Evolutionary Data.

    PubMed

    Linard, Benjamin; Nguyen, Ngoc Hoan; Prosdocimi, Francisco; Poch, Olivier; Thompson, Julie D

    2012-01-01

    Evolutionary systems biology aims to uncover the general trends and principles governing the evolution of biological networks. An essential part of this process is the reconstruction and analysis of the evolutionary histories of these complex, dynamic networks. Unfortunately, the methodologies for representing and exploiting such complex evolutionary histories in large scale studies are currently limited. Here, we propose a new formalism, called EvoluCode (Evolutionary barCode), which allows the integration of different evolutionary parameters (eg, sequence conservation, orthology, synteny …) in a unifying format and facilitates the multilevel analysis and visualization of complex evolutionary histories at the genome scale. The advantages of the approach are demonstrated by constructing barcodes representing the evolution of the complete human proteome. Two large-scale studies are then described: (i) the mapping and visualization of the barcodes on the human chromosomes and (ii) automatic clustering of the barcodes to highlight protein subsets sharing similar evolutionary histories and their functional analysis. The methodologies developed here open the way to the efficient application of other data mining and knowledge extraction techniques in evolutionary systems biology studies. A database containing all EvoluCode data is available at: http://lbgi.igbmc.fr/barcodes.

  6. [Death certificates of women in childbearing age: search for maternal deaths].

    PubMed

    Gil, Mariana Marcos; Gomes-Sponholz, Flavia Azevedo

    2013-01-01

    In Brazil, there is a lack of complete records on death certificates, and its reliability is questioned, especially for causes attributed to pregnancy and childbirth. We investigated, based on death certificates of women in reproductive age, any fields for identifying maternal deaths. Documentary research, conducted in hospital records. We analyzed in death certificates, maternal and no maternal deaths, inconclusive deaths and hidden deaths. To analyze the underlying causes of death we used ICD 10th Revision. Of the 301 death certificates reviewed, 60% had the fields 43/44 completed, and 40% had these fields blank and/or ignored. We found 58.5% of no maternal deaths, 2% of maternal deaths and 39.5% inconclusive. The analysis of inconclusive deaths allowed us to classify 4.3% as hidden deaths. To overcome the incompletitudes of civil registries, it is necessary that all health professionals be committed to the reliability of the information, so the priority target could be reached.

  7. Exploring evolutionary constraints is a task for an integrative evolutionary biology.

    PubMed

    Brakefield, P M; Roskam, J C

    2006-12-01

    Judging by the volume of writings about evolutionary constraints, they are an important topic in evolutionary biology. However, their involvement in shaping patterns of evolutionary change from morphological stasis to adaptive radiation remains contentious. This is at least in part because of the paucity of robust analyses of potential examples of constraints, whether of a more absolute or a relative nature. Here, we argue that what is needed to explore the type of constraints and bias on evolutionary change that may emerge from the way in which phenotypic variation is generated is an integrative approach applied to systems that can be tackled at different levels of biological organization. This is illustrated using research on the evolution of patterns in butterfly wing eyespots that has applied a combination of evolutionary genetics and evo-devo to an emerging model species with the beginnings of a comparative approach to describe patterns of variability among the extant taxa of two species-rich genera. PMID:17109328

  8. Exploring evolutionary constraints is a task for an integrative evolutionary biology.

    PubMed

    Brakefield, P M; Roskam, J C

    2006-12-01

    Judging by the volume of writings about evolutionary constraints, they are an important topic in evolutionary biology. However, their involvement in shaping patterns of evolutionary change from morphological stasis to adaptive radiation remains contentious. This is at least in part because of the paucity of robust analyses of potential examples of constraints, whether of a more absolute or a relative nature. Here, we argue that what is needed to explore the type of constraints and bias on evolutionary change that may emerge from the way in which phenotypic variation is generated is an integrative approach applied to systems that can be tackled at different levels of biological organization. This is illustrated using research on the evolution of patterns in butterfly wing eyespots that has applied a combination of evolutionary genetics and evo-devo to an emerging model species with the beginnings of a comparative approach to describe patterns of variability among the extant taxa of two species-rich genera.

  9. Religiosity and the Construction of Death in Turkish Death Announcements, 1970-2009

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Ergin, Murat

    2012-01-01

    Death and rituals performed after death reflect and reproduce social distinctions despite death's popular reputation as a great leveler. This study examines expressions of religiosity and constructions of death in Turkish death announcements, paying particular attention to gendered, ethnic, and temporal variations as well as markers of status and…

  10. Evolutionary-thinking in agricultural weed management.

    PubMed

    Neve, Paul; Vila-Aiub, Martin; Roux, Fabrice

    2009-12-01

    Agricultural weeds evolve in response to crop cultivation. Nevertheless, the central importance of evolutionary ecology for understanding weed invasion, persistence and management in agroecosystems is not widely acknowledged. This paper calls for more evolutionarily-enlightened weed management, in which management principles are informed by evolutionary biology to prevent or minimize weed adaptation and spread. As a first step, a greater knowledge of the extent, structure and significance of genetic variation within and between weed populations is required to fully assess the potential for weed adaptation. The evolution of resistance to herbicides is a classic example of weed adaptation. Even here, most research focuses on describing the physiological and molecular basis of resistance, rather than conducting studies to better understand the evolutionary dynamics of selection for resistance. We suggest approaches to increase the application of evolutionary-thinking to herbicide resistance research. Weed population dynamics models are increasingly important tools in weed management, yet these models often ignore intrapopulation and interpopulation variability, neglecting the potential for weed adaptation in response to management. Future agricultural weed management can benefit from greater integration of ecological and evolutionary principles to predict the long-term responses of weed populations to changing weed management, agricultural environments and global climate.

  11. Three Laws in Darwinian Evolutionary Theory

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ao, Ping

    2006-03-01

    Recent works to formulate laws in Darwinian evolutionary dynamics will be discussed. Specifically, three laws which form a consistent mathematical framework for the evolutionary dynamics in biology will be spelt out. The second law is most quantitative and is explicitly expressed in the unique form of a stochastic differential equation. Salient features of Darwinian evolutionary dynamics are captured by this law: the probabilistic nature of evolution, ascendancy, and the adaptive landscape. Four dynamical elements are introduced in this formulation: the ascendant matrix, the transverse matrix, the Wright evolutionary potential, and the stochastic drive. The first law may be regarded as a special case of the second law. It gives the reference point to discuss the evolutionary dynamics. The third law describes the relationship between the focused level of description to its lower and higher ones, and defines the dichotomy of deterministic and stochastic drives. It is an acknowledgement of the hierarchical structure in biology. A new interpretation of Fisher's fundamental theorem of natural selection is provided in terms of the F-Theorem. Ref. P. Ao, Physics of Life Reviews 2 (2005) 117-156.

  12. Evolutionary accounts of human behavioural diversity

    PubMed Central

    Brown, Gillian R.; Dickins, Thomas E.; Sear, Rebecca; Laland, Kevin N.

    2011-01-01

    Human beings persist in an extraordinary range of ecological settings, in the process exhibiting enormous behavioural diversity, both within and between populations. People vary in their social, mating and parental behaviour and have diverse and elaborate beliefs, traditions, norms and institutions. The aim of this theme issue is to ask whether, and how, evolutionary theory can help us to understand this diversity. In this introductory article, we provide a background to the debate surrounding how best to understand behavioural diversity using evolutionary models of human behaviour. In particular, we examine how diversity has been viewed by the main subdisciplines within the human evolutionary behavioural sciences, focusing in particular on the human behavioural ecology, evolutionary psychology and cultural evolution approaches. In addition to differences in focus and methodology, these subdisciplines have traditionally varied in the emphasis placed on human universals, ecological factors and socially learned behaviour, and on how they have addressed the issue of genetic variation. We reaffirm that evolutionary theory provides an essential framework for understanding behavioural diversity within and between human populations, but argue that greater integration between the subfields is critical to developing a satisfactory understanding of diversity. PMID:21199836

  13. The Evolutionary History of Lethal Metastatic Prostate Cancer

    PubMed Central

    Gundem, Gunes; Van Loo, Peter; Kremeyer, Barbara; Alexandrov, Ludmil B.; Tubio, Jose M.C.; Papaemmanuil, Elli; Brewer, Daniel S.; Kallio, Heini M.L.; Högnäs, Gunilla; Annala, Matti; Kivinummi, Kati; Goody, Victoria; Latimer, Calli; O’Meara, Sarah; Dawson, Kevin J.; Isaacs, William; Emmert-Buck, Michael R; Nykter, Matti; Kote-Jarai, Zsofia; Whitaker, Hayley C.; Neal, David E.; Cooper, Colin S.; Eeles, Rosalind A.; Visakorpi, Tapio; Campbell, Peter J.

    2015-01-01

    Cancers emerge from an on-going Darwinian evolutionary process, often leading to multiple competing subclones within a single primary tumour1-4. This evolutionary process culminates in the formation of metastases, which is the cause of 90% of cancer-related deaths5. However, despite its clinical importance, little is known about the principles governing the dissemination of cancer cells to distant organs. Although the hypothesis that each metastasis originates from a single tumour cell is generally supported6-8, recent studies using mouse models of cancer demonstrated the existence of polyclonal seeding from and inter-clonal cooperation between multiple subclones9,10. In this study, we sought definitive evidence for the existence of polyclonal seeding in human malignancy and to establish the clonal relationship among different metastases in the context of androgen-deprived metastatic prostate cancer. Using whole genome sequencing, we characterised multiple metastases arising from prostate tumours in ten patients. Integrated analyses of subclonal architecture revealed the patterns of metastatic spread in unprecedented detail. Metastasis-to-metastasis spread was found to be common, either through de novo monoclonal seeding of daughter metastases or, in five cases, through the transfer of multiple tumour clones between metastatic sites. Lesions affecting tumour suppressor genes usually occur as single events, whereas mutations in genes involved in androgen receptor signalling commonly involve multiple, convergent events in different metastases. Our results elucidate in detail the complex patterns of metastatic spread and further our understanding of the development of resistance to androgen deprivation therapy in prostate cancer. PMID:25830880

  14. Comparative evolutionary psychology of sperm competition.

    PubMed

    Shackelford, Todd K; Goetz, Aaron T

    2006-05-01

    A comparative evolutionary psychological perspective predicts that species that recurrently faced similar adaptive problems may have evolved similar psychological mechanisms to solve these problems. Sperm competition provides an arena in which to assess the heuristic value of such a comparative evolutionary perspective. The sperm competition that results from female infidelity and polyandry presents a similar class of adaptive problems for individuals across many species. The authors first describe mechanisms of sperm competition in insects and in birds. They suggest that the adaptive problems and evolved solutions in these species provide insight into human anatomy, physiology, psychology, and behavior. The authors then review recent theoretical and empirical arguments for the existence of sperm competition in humans and discuss proposed adaptations in humans that have analogs in insects or birds. The authors conclude by highlighting the heuristic value of a comparative evolutionary psychological approach in this field.

  15. Evolutionary psychology: the emperor's new paradigm.

    PubMed

    Buller, David J

    2005-06-01

    For some evolutionary psychology is merely a field of inquiry, but for others it is a robust paradigm involving specific theories about the nature and evolution of the human mind. Proponents of this paradigm claim to have made several important discoveries regarding the evolved architecture of the mind. Highly publicized discoveries include a cheater-detection module, a psychological sex difference in jealousy, and motivational mechanisms underlying parental love and its lapses, which purportedly result in child maltreatment. In this article, I argue that the empirical evidence for these "discoveries" is inconclusive, at best. I suggest that, as the reigning paradigm in evolutionary psychology has produced questionable results, the evolutionary study of human psychology is still in need of a guiding paradigm.

  16. Towards a postmodern synthesis of evolutionary biology.

    PubMed

    Koonin, Eugene V

    2009-03-15

    In 2009, we are celebrating the 200th anniversary of Charles Darwin and the 150th jubilee of his masterpiece, the Origin of Species. Darwin developed the first coherent and compelling narrative of biological evolution and thus founded evolutionary biology-and modern biology in general, remembering the famous dictum of Dobzhansky. It is, however, counter-productive, and ultimately, a disservice to Darwin's legacy, to define modern evolutionary biology as neo-Darwinism. The current picture of evolution, informed, in particular, by results of comparative genomics and systems biology, is by far more complex than that presented in the Origin of Species, so that Darwinian principles, including natural selection, are incorporated into the evolving new synthesis as important but certainly not all-embracing tenets. This expansion of evolutionary biology does not denigrate Darwin in the least but rather emphasizes the fertility of his ideas. PMID:19242109

  17. Incorporating evolutionary processes into population viability models.

    PubMed

    Pierson, Jennifer C; Beissinger, Steven R; Bragg, Jason G; Coates, David J; Oostermeijer, J Gerard B; Sunnucks, Paul; Schumaker, Nathan H; Trotter, Meredith V; Young, Andrew G

    2015-06-01

    We examined how ecological and evolutionary (eco-evo) processes in population dynamics could be better integrated into population viability analysis (PVA). Complementary advances in computation and population genomics can be combined into an eco-evo PVA to offer powerful new approaches to understand the influence of evolutionary processes on population persistence. We developed the mechanistic basis of an eco-evo PVA using individual-based models with individual-level genotype tracking and dynamic genotype-phenotype mapping to model emergent population-level effects, such as local adaptation and genetic rescue. We then outline how genomics can allow or improve parameter estimation for PVA models by providing genotypic information at large numbers of loci for neutral and functional genome regions. As climate change and other threatening processes increase in rate and scale, eco-evo PVAs will become essential research tools to evaluate the effects of adaptive potential, evolutionary rescue, and locally adapted traits on persistence.

  18. Atavisms: medical, genetic, and evolutionary implications.

    PubMed

    Tomić, Nenad; Meyer-Rochow, Victor Benno

    2011-01-01

    Traits expected to be lost in the evolutionary history of a species occasionally reappear apparently out of the blue. Such traits as extra nipples or tails in humans, hind limbs in whales, teeth in birds, or wings in wingless stick insects remind us that certain genetic information is not completely lost, but can be reactivated. Atavisms seem to violate one of the central evolutionary principles, known as Dollo's law, that "an organism is unable to return, even partially, to a previous stage already realized in the ranks of its ancestors." Although it is still not clear what triggers and controls the reactivation of dormant traits, atavisms are a challenge to evolutionary biologists and geneticists. This article presents some of the more striking examples of atavisms, discusses some of the currently controversial issues like human quadrupedalism, and reviews the progress made in explaining some of the mechanisms that can lead to atavistic features. PMID:21857125

  19. Modeling the evolutionary demographic processes for geomedicine

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lushnikov, A. A.; Kagan, A. I.; Gvishiani, A. D.; Lyubovtseva, Yu. S.

    2014-12-01

    We describe the principles for constructing evolutionary demographic models for geomedical statistics. Several variants of evolutionary models are proposed: (1) a model of the evolution of a closed population taking into account distribution by age, (2) a model that takes into account the morbidity and difference in mortality for groups of patients and healthy individuals, (3) a model that takes into account the distribution of different age groups by fertile ability, (4) a migration model that takes into account the population exchange between several localities, and (5) a model of the propagation of infectious diseases. Each model depends on a group of parameters determined from the medical and demographic state of the population. We discuss the possible application of the proposed evolutionary models to geomedical statistics.

  20. Do we need an extended evolutionary synthesis?

    PubMed

    Pigliucci, Massimo

    2007-12-01

    The Modern Synthesis (MS) is the current paradigm in evolutionary biology. It was actually built by expanding on the conceptual foundations laid out by its predecessors, Darwinism and neo-Darwinism. For sometime now there has been talk of a new Extended Evolutionary Synthesis (EES), and this article begins to outline why we may need such an extension, and how it may come about. As philosopher Karl Popper has noticed, the current evolutionary theory is a theory of genes, and we still lack a theory of forms. The field began, in fact, as a theory of forms in Darwin's days, and the major goal that an EES will aim for is a unification of our theories of genes and of forms. This may be achieved through an organic grafting of novel concepts onto the foundational structure of the MS, particularly evolvability, phenotypic plasticity, epigenetic inheritance, complexity theory, and the theory of evolution in highly dimensional adaptive landscapes. PMID:17924956