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  1. New findings on biological factors predicting addiction relapse vulnerability.

    PubMed

    Sinha, Rajita

    2011-10-01

    Relapse is a highly prevalent phenomenon in addiction. This paper examines the new research on identifying biological factors that contribute to addiction relapse risk. Prospective studies examining relapse risk are reviewed, and clinical, biological, and neural factors that predict relapse risk are identified. Clinical factors, patient-related factors, and subjective and behavioral measures such as depressive symptoms, stress, and drug craving all predict future relapse risk. Among biological measures, endocrine measures such as cortisol and cortisol/corticotropin (ACTH) ratio as a measure of adrenal sensitivity and serum brain-derived neurotrophic factor were also predictive of future relapse risk. Among neural measures, brain atrophy in the medial frontal regions and hyperreactivity of the anterior cingulate during withdrawal were identified as important in drug withdrawal and relapse risk. Caveats pertaining to specific drug abuse type and phase of addiction are discussed. Finally, significant implications of these findings for clinical practice are presented, with a specific focus on determining biological markers of relapse risk that may be used to identify those individuals who are most at risk of relapse in the clinic. Such markers may then be used to assess treatment response and develop specific treatments that will normalize these neural and biological sequelae so as to significantly improve relapse outcomes.

  2. How to Find Out in: Biology.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Kaplan, Doris F.

    This library handbook was designed for the student of biology. It lists some of the more useful materials and reference works basic to general research and gives their locations in the Fogler Library at the University of Maine. Materials are listed in six categories: (1) guides to the literature; (2) dictionaries and encyclopedias; (3) handbooks;…

  3. Findings

    MedlinePlus

    ... Issue All Issues Explore Findings by Topic Cell Biology Cellular Structures, Functions, Processes, Imaging, Stress Response Chemistry ... Glycobiology, Synthesis, Natural Products, Chemical Reactions Computers in Biology Bioinformatics, Modeling, Systems Biology, Data Visualization Diseases Cancer, ...

  4. Skin Cancer: Biology, Risk Factors & Treatment

    MedlinePlus

    ... turn Javascript on. Feature: Skin Cancer Skin Cancer: Biology, Risk Factors & Treatment Past Issues / Summer 2013 Table ... Articles Skin Cancer Can Strike Anyone / Skin Cancer: Biology, Risk Factors & Treatment / Timely Healthcare Checkup Catches Melanoma ...

  5. [Biology of von Willebrand factor].

    PubMed

    Girma, Jean-Pierre

    2006-01-01

    Von Willebrand factor (VWF) is a multimeric glycoprotein synthesized by megakaryocytes and endothelial cells. It is stored in platelets and endothelial cells and secreted towards subendothelium and plasma. VWF multimers consist of linear arrangements of identical subunits with a molecular weight of 270 kDa. The longest multimers reach more than 20 x 10(6) Da in storage granules. In the circulation, the multimer size is limited by the specific protease ADAMTS13. In primary hemostasis, VWF plays a key role as a molecular bridge in adhesion between platelets and subendothelium and between platelets during their aggregation. These functions, which involve the interaction with platelet glycoprotein lb, are mainly enhanced by VWF immobilization onto hydrophobic surfaces (collagen, cell membrane) and by high shear rates found in microcirculation and stenosed arteries. In these functions, the higher molecular weight forms are the most efficient. Under such hemodynamic conditions, proteolytic activity of ADAMTS13 is also optimal and limits the multimer size to about 15 x 10(6) Da as soon as their secretion. Thus ADAMTS13 appears as a key physiologic regulator of the VWF platelet functions. In the microcirculation, the lack of ADAMTS13 activity can result in the formation of VWF-rich platelet aggregates responsible for thrombotic thrombocytopenic purpura.

  6. Finding and Scaling Unstable Periodic Orbits in Biological Systems

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Moss, Frank

    1998-03-01

    Unstable periodic orbits (UPOs) of low order can be detected in noisy physical(D. Pierson and F. Moss, Phys. Rev. Lett.) 75, 2124 (1995)and biological(X. Pei and F. Moss, Nature) 379, 618 (1996) systems. The statistically based detection method extracts the number of encounters with UPOs of period p, and compares that with findings from surrogate files. UPOs can be distinguished from stable orbits. The results are expressed as a time evolving statistical measure, useful for analyzing short files from non-stationary systems. We show bifurcations between stable and unstable behavior in peripheral cold receptors, neurosecretory hypothalamic cells (both in rat) and electroreceptors in catfish(H.A. Braun, et al., J. Comp. Neurosci.), in press. Since only orbits of the lowest orders (p < 4) can be detected, a scaling is necessary to connect the experimentally observable orbits to the infinite set of UPOs which characterize dissipative chaos. A scaling due to C.-Y. Lai is calculated for the Henon map. Data from crayfish photoreceptor cells for p = 1 to 3 are consistent with this scaling.

  7. Effectiveness of Biologic Factors in Shoulder Disorders

    PubMed Central

    Giotis, Dimitrios; Aryaei, Ashkan; Vasilakakos, Theofanis; Paschos, Nikolaos K.

    2017-01-01

    Background: Shoulder pathology can cause significant pain, discomfort, and loss of function that all interfere with activities of daily living and may lead to poor quality of life. Primary osteoarthritis and rotator cuff diseases with its sequalae are the main culprits. Management of shoulder disorders using biological factors gained an increasing interest over the last years. This interest reveals the need of effective treatments for shoulder degenerative disorders, and highlights the importance of a comprehensive and detailed understanding of the rapidly increasing knowledge in the field. Methods: This study will describe most of the available biology-based strategies that have been recently developed, focusing on their effectiveness in animal and clinical studies. Results: Data from in vitro work will also be briefly presented; in order to further elucidate newly acquired knowledge regarding mechanisms of tissue degeneration and repair that would probably drive translational work in the next decade. The role of platelet rich-plasma, growth factors, stem cells and other alternative treatments will be described in an evidence-based approach, in an attempt to provide guidelines for their clinical application. Finally, certain challenges that biologic treatments face today will be described as an initiative for future strategies. Conclusion: The application of different growth factors and mesenchymal stem cells appears as promising approaches for enhancing biologic repair. However, data from clinical studies are still limited, and future studies need to improve understanding of the repair process in cellular and molecular level and evaluate the effectiveness of biologic factors in the management of shoulder disorders.

  8. Happiness & Health: The Biological Factors- Systematic Review Article

    PubMed Central

    DFARHUD, Dariush; MALMIR, Maryam; KHANAHMADI, Mohammad

    2014-01-01

    Abstract Happiness underlying factors are considerable from two dimensions: endogenic factors (biological, cognitive, personality and ethical sub-factors) and exogenic factors (behavioral, socialcultural, economical, geographical, life events and aesthetics sub-factors). Among all endogenic factors, biological sub-factors are the significant predictors of happiness. Existence of significant differences in temperament and happiness of infants is an indicator of biological influences. Therefore, this study aimed to consider biological factors that underlie happiness. At the first, all of the biological factors in relation with happiness were searched from following websites: PubMed, Wiley& Sons, Science direct (1990–2014). Then, the articles divided into five sub-groups (genetic, brain and neurotransmitters, endocrinology and hormones, physical health, morphology and physical attractiveness). Finally, a systematic review performed based on existing information. Results of studies on genetic factors indicated an average effectiveness of genetic about 35 -50 percent on happiness. In spite of difficulties in finding special genes, several genes distributed to emotion and mood. Neuroscience studies showed that some part of brain (e.g. amygdala, hipocamp and limbic system) and neurotransmitters (e.g. dopamine, serotonin, norepinefrine and endorphin) play a role in control of happiness. A few studies pointed to the role of cortisol and adrenaline (adrenal gland) and oxitocin (pituitary gland) in controlling happiness. Physical health and typology also concluded in most related studies to have a significant role in happiness. Therefore, according to previous research, it can be said that biological and health factors are critical in underlying happiness and its role in happiness is undeniable. PMID:26060713

  9. Happiness & Health: The Biological Factors- Systematic Review Article.

    PubMed

    Dfarhud, Dariush; Malmir, Maryam; Khanahmadi, Mohammad

    2014-11-01

    Happiness underlying factors are considerable from two dimensions: endogenic factors (biological, cognitive, personality and ethical sub-factors) and exogenic factors (behavioral, socialcultural, economical, geographical, life events and aesthetics sub-factors). Among all endogenic factors, biological sub-factors are the significant predictors of happiness. Existence of significant differences in temperament and happiness of infants is an indicator of biological influences. Therefore, this study aimed to consider biological factors that underlie happiness. At the first, all of the biological factors in relation with happiness were searched from following websites: PubMed, Wiley& Sons, Science direct (1990-2014). Then, the articles divided into five sub-groups (genetic, brain and neurotransmitters, endocrinology and hormones, physical health, morphology and physical attractiveness). Finally, a systematic review performed based on existing information. Results of studies on genetic factors indicated an average effectiveness of genetic about 35 -50 percent on happiness. In spite of difficulties in finding special genes, several genes distributed to emotion and mood. Neuroscience studies showed that some part of brain (e.g. amygdala, hipocamp and limbic system) and neurotransmitters (e.g. dopamine, serotonin, norepinefrine and endorphin) play a role in control of happiness. A few studies pointed to the role of cortisol and adrenaline (adrenal gland) and oxitocin (pituitary gland) in controlling happiness. Physical health and typology also concluded in most related studies to have a significant role in happiness. Therefore, according to previous research, it can be said that biological and health factors are critical in underlying happiness and its role in happiness is undeniable.

  10. Finding the key - cell biology and science education.

    PubMed

    Miller, Kenneth R

    2010-12-01

    No international research community, cell biology included, can exist without an educational community to renew and replenish it. Unfortunately, cell biology researchers frequently regard their work as independent of the process of education and see little reason to reach out to science teachers. For cell biology to continue to prosper, I argue that researchers must support education in at least three ways. First, we must view education and research as part of a single scientific community. Second, we should take advantage of new technologies to connect the research laboratory to the classroom. Finally, we must take the initiative in defending the integrity of science teaching, particularly when education is under attack for political or religious reasons.

  11. Finding Balance Between Biological Groundwater Treatment and Treated Injection Water

    SciTech Connect

    Carlson, Mark A.; Nielsen, Kellin R.; Byrnes, Mark E.; Simmons, Sally A.; Morse, John J.; Geiger, James B.; Watkins, Louis E.; McFee, Phillip M.; Martins, K.

    2015-01-14

    At the U.S. Department of Energy’s Hanford Site, CH2M HILL Plateau Remediation Company operates the 200 West Pump and Treat which was engineered to treat radiological and chemical contaminants in groundwater as a result of the site’s former plutonium production years. Fluidized bed bioreactors (FBRs) are used to remove nitrate, metals, and volatile organic compounds. Increasing nitrate concentrations in the treatment plant effluent and the presence of a slimy biomass (a typical microorganism response to stress) in the FBRs triggered an investigation of nutrient levels in the system. Little, if any, micronutrient feed was coming into the bioreactors. Additionally, carbon substrate (used to promote biological growth) was passing through to the injection wells, causing biological fouling of the wells and reduced specific injectivity. Adjustments to the micronutrient feed improved microorganism health, but the micronutrients were being overfed (particularly manganese) plugging the injection wells further. Injection well rehabilitation to restore specific injectivity required repeated treatments to remove the biological fouling and precipitated metal oxides. A combination of sulfamic and citric acids worked well to dissolve metal oxides and sodium hypochlorite effectively removed the biological growth. Intensive surging and development techniques successfully removed clogging material from the injection wells. Ultimately, the investigation and nutrient adjustments took months to restore proper balance to the microbial system and over a year to stabilize injection well capacities. Carefully tracking and managing the FBRs and well performance monitoring are critical to balancing the needs of the treatment system while reducing fouling mechanisms in the injection wells.

  12. Biological Factors Associated with Asperger Syndrome.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Rickarby, Geoff; And Others

    1991-01-01

    This paper reviews Asperger Syndrome, a form of developing autism with average intelligence, in 12 boys (ages 5 to late teens). Examination of family histories, medical history and findings, obstetric, and neonatal data found no common environmental factors and supports a brain damage hypothesis. (DB)

  13. Biological risk factors for deep vein trombosis.

    PubMed

    Vayá, Amparo; Mira, Yolanda; Martínez, Marcial; Villa, Piedad; Ferrando, Fernando; Estellés, Amparo; Corella, Dolores; Aznar, Justo

    2002-01-01

    Hypercoagulable states due either to inherited or acquired thrombotic risk factors are only present in approximately half of cases of DVT, but the causes in the other half, remain unknown. The importance of biological risk factors such as hyperlipidemia, hypofibrinolysis and hemorheological alterations in the pathogenesis of DVT has not been well established. In order to ascertain whether the above mentioned biological factors are associated with DVT and could constitute independent risk factors, we carried out a case-control study in 109 first DVT patients in whom inherited or acquired thrombophilic risk factors had been ruled out and 121 healthy controls age (42+/-15 years) and sex matched. From all the biological variables analyzed (cholesterol, triglycerides, glucose, fibrinogen, erythrocyte aggregation, hematocrit, plasma viscosity and PAI-1) only fibrinogen concentration reached a statistically significant difference on the comparison of means (290+/-73 mg/dl in cases vs 268+/-58 mg/dl in controls, p<0.05). After this continuous variables were dichotomized according to our reference values, the percentage of cases with cholesterolemia >220 mg/dl, hematocrit >45% and fibrinogen >300 mg/dl was higher in cases than in controls: 38% vs 22%; p<0.01; 43% vs 27%; p<0.05; 36% vs 23%; p<0.05, respectively. The percentage of cases with PAI-1 values >30 ng/ml, 37% vs 25% was borderline significant; p=0.055. Multivariate logistic regression analysis showed that cholesterolemia >220 mg/dl and fibrinogen >300 mg/dl constitute independent predictors of venous thrombotic risk. The adjusted OR's were 2.03 (95% CI; 1.12-3.70) for cholesterolemia and 1.94 (95% CI; 1.07-3.55) for fibrinogen. When these two variables combined DVT risk rose about fourfold (3.96; p<0.05). Our results suggest that hypercholesterolemia and hyperfibrinogenemia should be added to the list of known DVT risk factors and we recommend adopting measures to decrease these variables in the population with a

  14. Transcription factor binding energy vs. biological function

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Djordjevic, M.; Grotewold, E.

    2007-03-01

    Transcription factors (TFs) are proteins that bind to DNA and regulate expression of genes. Identification of transcription factor binding sites within the regulatory segments of genomic DNA is an important step towards understanding of gene regulatory networks. Recent theoretical advances that we developed [1,2], allow us to infer TF-DNA interaction parameters from in-vitro selection experiments [3]. We use more than 6000 binding sequences [3], assembled under controlled conditions, to obtain protein-DNA interaction parameters for a mammalian TF with up to now unprecedented accuracy. Can one accurately identify biologically functional TF binding sites (i.e. the binding sites that regulate gene expression), even with the best possible protein-DNA interaction parameters? To address this issue we i) compare our prediction of protein binding with gene expression data, ii) use evolutionary comparison between related mammalian genomes. Our results strongly suggest that in a genome there exists a large number of randomly occurring high energy binding sites that are not biologically functional. [1] M Djordjevic, submitted to Biomol. Eng. [2] M. Djordjevic and A. M. Sengupta, Phys. Biol. 3: 13, 2006. [3] E. Roulet et al., Nature Biotech. 20: 831, 2002.

  15. Social, Behavioral, and Biological Factors, and Sex Differences in Mortality

    PubMed Central

    ROGERS, RICHARD G.; EVERETT, BETHANY G.; SAINT ONGE, JARRON M.; KRUEGER, PATRICK M.

    2010-01-01

    Few studies have examined whether sex differences in mortality are associated with different distributions of risk factors or result from the unique relationships between risk factors and mortality for men and women. We extend previous research by systematically testing a variety of factors, including health behaviors, social ties, socioeconomic status, and biological indicators of health. We employ the National Health and Nutritional Examination Survey III Linked Mortality File and use Cox proportional hazards models to examine sex differences in adult mortality in the United States. Our findings document that social and behavioral characteristics are key factors related to the sex gap in mortality. Once we control for women’s lower levels of marriage, poverty, and exercise, the sex gap in mortality widens; and once we control for women’s greater propensity to visit with friends and relatives, attend religious services, and abstain from smoking, the sex gap in mortality narrows. Biological factors— including indicators of inflammation and cardiovascular risk—also inform sex differences in mortality. Nevertheless, persistent sex differences in mortality remain: compared with women, men have 30% to 83% higher risks of death over the follow-up period, depending on the covariates included in the model. Although the prevalence of risk factors differs by sex, the impact of those risk factors on mortality is similar for men and women. PMID:20879677

  16. Multidrug-resistant tuberculosis: epidemiology, risk factors and case finding.

    PubMed

    Caminero, J A

    2010-04-01

    Although the multidrug-resistant tuberculosis (MDR-TB) epidemic is a very recent problem, many studies have attempted to understand it. We now have good estimates of the current burden (approximately 500 000 MDR-TB cases worldwide), and following the introduction of potential MDR-TB control strategies projections of these figures are being estimated. The projected trends in tuberculosis (TB) and MDR-TB incidence vary. Risk factors for resistance can be divided into two categories: 1) those facilitating the selection of resistance in the community and 2) the specific conditions that appear to increase some patients' vulnerability to resistance. The epidemiological situation varies greatly across countries, principally due to poor treatment practices and poor implementation of control programmes in the past-and even today, to a lesser degree-and recent data have suggested that national TB programmes that use existing drugs efficiently can postpone and even reverse the MDR-TB epidemic. Other factors that have also contributed to this epidemic situation are analysed in this article. The recognition of factors leading to the epidemic in some regions and the identification of populations at risk will assist in focusing case-finding efforts. From an individual perspective, treatment failures with first-line rifampicin-containing regimens and contacts of MDR-TB cases have the highest rates of resistance. Patients previously treated for TB and the other risk factors analysed in this article should be prioritised in case finding.

  17. Parameterized Algorithmics for Finding Exact Solutions of NP-Hard Biological Problems.

    PubMed

    Hüffner, Falk; Komusiewicz, Christian; Niedermeier, Rolf; Wernicke, Sebastian

    2017-01-01

    Fixed-parameter algorithms are designed to efficiently find optimal solutions to some computationally hard (NP-hard) problems by identifying and exploiting "small" problem-specific parameters. We survey practical techniques to develop such algorithms. Each technique is introduced and supported by case studies of applications to biological problems, with additional pointers to experimental results.

  18. Genetic factors associated with longevity: a review of recent findings.

    PubMed

    Shadyab, Aladdin H; LaCroix, Andrea Z

    2015-01-01

    Given the rising rate of survival into advanced old age in the United States, achieving longevity and healthy aging is becoming increasingly important. Besides maintaining healthy lifestyle behaviors, positive aging outcomes may also be heritable, with estimates ranging from 20% to 35%. In this qualitative review, we summarize recent findings on genetic factors linked to longevity across different populations and study designs. Recent studies not only confirm the association of APOE with longevity in different populations, but also implicate several other pathways that may influence longevity including nitric oxide production, inflammation, immunity, and DNA damage response and repair. Recent evidence also suggests that mitochondrial DNA may play an important role in attaining longevity. Despite these implicated pathways, longevity may be a polygenic trait influenced by a complex interplay of multiple genes. Future genetic studies on aging would benefit from larger samples of long-lived individuals, birth-cohort matched controls, inclusion of different aging phenotypes (e.g., aging free of morbidities), and analysis of gender differences.

  19. Biological risk factors for suicidal behaviors: a meta-analysis

    PubMed Central

    Chang, B P; Franklin, J C; Ribeiro, J D; Fox, K R; Bentley, K H; Kleiman, E M; Nock, M K

    2016-01-01

    Prior studies have proposed a wide range of potential biological risk factors for future suicidal behaviors. Although strong evidence exists for biological correlates of suicidal behaviors, it remains unclear if these correlates are also risk factors for suicidal behaviors. We performed a meta-analysis to integrate the existing literature on biological risk factors for suicidal behaviors and to determine their statistical significance. We conducted a systematic search of PubMed, PsycInfo and Google Scholar for studies that used a biological factor to predict either suicide attempt or death by suicide. Inclusion criteria included studies with at least one longitudinal analysis using a biological factor to predict either of these outcomes in any population through 2015. From an initial screen of 2541 studies we identified 94 cases. Random effects models were used for both meta-analyses and meta-regression. The combined effect of biological factors produced statistically significant but relatively weak prediction of suicide attempts (weighted mean odds ratio (wOR)=1.41; CI: 1.09–1.81) and suicide death (wOR=1.28; CI: 1.13–1.45). After accounting for publication bias, prediction was nonsignificant for both suicide attempts and suicide death. Only two factors remained significant after accounting for publication bias—cytokines (wOR=2.87; CI: 1.40–5.93) and low levels of fish oil nutrients (wOR=1.09; CI: 1.01–1.19). Our meta-analysis revealed that currently known biological factors are weak predictors of future suicidal behaviors. This conclusion should be interpreted within the context of the limitations of the existing literature, including long follow-up intervals and a lack of tests of interactions with other risk factors. Future studies addressing these limitations may more effectively test for potential biological risk factors. PMID:27622931

  20. Findings.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Viadero, Debra; Coles, Adrienne D.

    1998-01-01

    Studies on race-based admissions, sports and sex, and religion and drugs suggest that: affirmative action policies were successful regarding college admissions; boys who play sports are more likely to be sexually active than their peers, with the opposite true for girls; and religion is a major factor in whether teens use cigarettes, alcohol, and…

  1. [Molecular biology of haemostasis: fibrinogen, factor XIII].

    PubMed

    Meyer, M

    2004-05-01

    Genetic defects of fibrinogen are caused by a broad spectrum of mutations in one of the three structural genes FGA, FGB and FGG. They result in complete or partial lack of plasma fibrinogen (a- or hypofibrinogenaemia) or in structural abnormalities affecting protein function (dysfibrinogenaemia). In contrast to afibrinogenaemia mainly caused by nonsense, frameshift, and splice site mutations resulting in substantially truncated polypeptide chains (mainly Aalpha), in hypo- and dysfibrinogenaemias missense mutations lead to the exchange of single amino acids as dominating underlying defect. In the cases with quantitative disorders, bleeding with various degrees of severity is generally observed. Dysfibrinogenaemia is associated with both bleeding or thrombosis or even a combination of haemorrhagic and thromboembolic symptoms. About one half of the dysfibrinogenaemic cases is clinically asymptomatic. The plasmatic factor XIII (FXIII) is a heterotetramer composed of two A and two B subunits encoded by two different genes. FXIII deficiency is associated with bleeding, wound dehiscence and recurrent spontaneous abortions. The most frequent form is caused by defects in the A subunit with a broad spectrum of underlying mutations. Defects of the B subunit are very rare and were molecularly elucidated in only a few cases.

  2. Finding off-targets, biological pathways, and target diseases for chymase inhibitors via structure-based systems biology approach.

    PubMed

    Arooj, Mahreen; Sakkiah, Sugunadevi; Cao, Guang Ping; Kim, Songmi; Arulalapperumal, Venkatesh; Lee, Keun Woo

    2015-07-01

    Off-target binding connotes the binding of a small molecule of therapeutic significance to a protein target in addition to the primary target for which it was proposed. Progressively such off-targeting is emerging to be regular practice to reveal side effects. Chymase is an enzyme of hydrolase class that catalyzes hydrolysis of peptide bonds. A link between heart failure and chymase is ascribed, and a chymase inhibitor is in clinical phase II for treatment of heart failure. However, the underlying mechanisms of the off-target effects of human chymase inhibitors are still unclear. Here, we develop a robust computational strategy that is applicable to any enzyme system and that allows the prediction of drug effects on biological processes. Putative off-targets for chymase inhibitors were identified through various structural and functional similarity analyses along with molecular docking studies. Finally, literature survey was performed to incorporate these off-targets into biological pathways and to establish links between pathways and particular adverse effects. Off-targets of chymase inhibitors are linked to various biological pathways such as classical and lectin pathways of complement system, intrinsic and extrinsic pathways of coagulation cascade, and fibrinolytic system. Tissue kallikreins, granzyme M, neutrophil elastase, and mesotrypsin are also identified as off-targets. These off-targets and their associated pathways are elucidated for the effects of inflammation, cancer, hemorrhage, thrombosis, and central nervous system diseases (Alzheimer's disease). Prospectively, our approach is helpful not only to better understand the mechanisms of chymase inhibitors but also for drug repurposing exercises to find novel uses for these inhibitors.

  3. Cell and molecular biology of epidermal growth factor receptor.

    PubMed

    Ceresa, Brian P; Peterson, Joanne L

    2014-01-01

    The epidermal growth factor receptor (EGFR) has been one of the most intensely studied cell surface receptors due to its well-established roles in developmental biology, tissue homeostasis, and cancer biology. The EGFR has been critical for creating paradigms for numerous aspects of cell biology, such as ligand binding, signal transduction, and membrane trafficking. Despite this history of discovery, there is a continual stream of evidence that only the surface has been scratched. New ways of receptor regulation continue to be identified, each of which is a potential molecular target for manipulating EGFR signaling and the resultant changes in cell and tissue biology. This chapter is an update on EGFR-mediated signaling, and describes some recent developments in the regulation of receptor biology.

  4. Biosynthesis, processing and secretion of von Willebrand factor: biological implications.

    PubMed

    de Wit, T R; van Mourik, J A

    2001-06-01

    von Willebrand factor is a multimeric plasma glycoprotein that is required for normal haemostasis. von Willebrand factor is synthesized by endothelial cells and megakaryocytes, and originates from its precursor pro-von Willebrand factor. The endoproteolytic processing of pro-von Willebrand factor results in mature von Willebrand factor and von Willebrand factor propeptide (also known as von Willebrand Ag II). In endothelial cells, the propeptide controls the polymerization and subsequent targeting of von Willebrand factor to the storage vesicles, the so-called Weibel-Palade bodies. Upon stimulation of the endothelial cells, the Weibel-Palade bodies are translocated to the plasma membrane of the cell, and mature von Willebrand factor and its propeptide are co-secreted. After release, these polypeptides have divergent fates and serve different biological functions. Mature von Willebrand factor both controls platelet adhesion and aggregation at sites of vascular injury and acts as a chaperone protein for coagulation factor VIII. The von Willebrand factor propeptide may serve a role in modulating inflammatory processes. This still growing body of information indicates that the biological function of the von Willebrand factor gene product is more diverse than was previously thought.

  5. Presumed Perinatal Stroke: Risk Factors, Clinical and Radiological Findings.

    PubMed

    Ilves, Pilvi; Laugesaar, Rael; Loorits, Dagmar; Kolk, Anneli; Tomberg, Tiiu; Lõo, Silva; Talvik, Inga; Kahre, Tiina; Talvik, Tiina

    2016-04-01

    It is unknown why some infants with perinatal stroke present clinical symptoms late during infancy and will be identified as infants with presumed perinatal stroke. The risk factors and clinical and radiological data of 42 infants with presumed perinatal stroke (69% with periventricular venous infarction and 31% with arterial ischemic stroke) from the Estonian Pediatric Stroke Database were reviewed. Children with presumed perinatal stroke were born at term in 95% of the cases and had had no risk factors during pregnancy in 43% of the cases. Children with periventricular venous infarction were born significantly more often (82%) vaginally (P = .0213) compared to children with arterial stroke (42%); nor did they require resuscitation (P = .0212) or had any neurological symptoms after birth (P = .0249). Periventricular venous infarction is the most common type of lesion among infants with the presumed perinatal stroke. Data suggest that the disease is of prenatal origin.

  6. [Rheumatoid factor or antinuclear antibodies as incidental finding].

    PubMed

    Biesen, R; Burmester, G-R; Hiepe, F

    2014-10-01

    Rheumatoid factor and antinuclear antibodies are detectable in many different conditions and are ordered by various specialities. The interpretation of results, however, is quite complex.The objective of this article is to help apply these tests correctly and enable an accurate interpretation of the test results. Furthermore, we describe the steps in the differential diagnostics for selecting those patients who need to be referred to a rheumatologist.

  7. Finding of the Low Molecular Weight Inhibitors of Resuscitation Promoting Factor Enzymatic and Resuscitation Activity

    PubMed Central

    Demina, Galina R.; Makarov, Vadim A.; Nikitushkin, Vadim D.; Ryabova, Olga B.; Vostroknutova, Galina N.; Salina, Elena G.; Shleeva, Margarita O.; Goncharenko, Anna V.; Kaprelyants, Arseny S.

    2009-01-01

    Background Resuscitation promoting factors (RPF) are secreted proteins involved in reactivation of dormant actinobacteria, including Mycobacterium tuberculosis. They have been considered as prospective targets for the development of new anti-tuberculosis drugs preventing reactivation of dormant tubercle bacilli, generally associated with latent tuberculosis. However, no inhibitors of Rpf activity have been reported so far. The goal of this study was to find low molecular weight compounds inhibiting the enzymatic and biological activities of Rpfs. Methodology/Principal Findings Here we describe a novel class of 2-nitrophenylthiocyanates (NPT) compounds that inhibit muralytic activity of Rpfs with IC50 1–7 µg/ml. Fluorescence studies revealed interaction of active NPTs with the internal regions of the Rpf molecule. Candidate inhibitors of Rpf enzymatic activity showed a bacteriostatic effect on growth of Micrococcus luteus (in which Rpf is essential for growth protein) at concentrations close to IC50. The candidate compounds suppressed resuscitation of dormant (“non-culturable”) cells of M. smegmatis at 1 µg/ml or delayed resuscitation of dormant M. tuberculosis obtained in laboratory conditions at 10 µg/ml. However, they did not inhibit growth of active mycobacteria under these concentrations. Conclusions/Significance NPT are the first example of low molecular weight compounds that inhibit the enzymatic and biological activities of Rpf proteins. PMID:20016836

  8. Muscle dysfunction in chronic obstructive pulmonary disease: update on causes and biological findings

    PubMed Central

    Pascual, Sergi; Casadevall, Carme; Orozco-Levi, Mauricio; Barreiro, Esther

    2015-01-01

    Respiratory and/or limb muscle dysfunction, which are frequently observed in chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) patients, contribute to their disease prognosis irrespective of the lung function. Muscle dysfunction is caused by the interaction of local and systemic factors. The key deleterious etiologic factors are pulmonary hyperinflation for the respiratory muscles and deconditioning secondary to reduced physical activity for limb muscles. Nonetheless, cigarette smoke, systemic inflammation, nutritional abnormalities, exercise, exacerbations, anabolic insufficiency, drugs and comorbidities also seem to play a relevant role. All these factors modify the phenotype of the muscles, through the induction of several biological phenomena in patients with COPD. While respiratory muscles improve their aerobic phenotype (percentage of oxidative fibers, capillarization, mitochondrial density, enzyme activity in the aerobic pathways, etc.), limb muscles exhibit the opposite phenotype. In addition, both muscle groups show oxidative stress, signs of damage and epigenetic changes. However, fiber atrophy, increased number of inflammatory cells, altered regenerative capacity; signs of apoptosis and autophagy, and an imbalance between protein synthesis and breakdown are rather characteristic features of the limb muscles, mostly in patients with reduced body weight. Despite that significant progress has been achieved in the last decades, full elucidation of the specific roles of the target biological mechanisms involved in COPD muscle dysfunction is still required. Such an achievement will be crucial to adequately tackle with this relevant clinical problem of COPD patients in the near-future. PMID:26623119

  9. Gibbs Recursive Sampler: finding transcription factor binding sites.

    PubMed

    Thompson, William; Rouchka, Eric C; Lawrence, Charles E

    2003-07-01

    The Gibbs Motif Sampler is a software package for locating common elements in collections of biopolymer sequences. In this paper we describe a new variation of the Gibbs Motif Sampler, the Gibbs Recursive Sampler, which has been developed specifically for locating multiple transcription factor binding sites for multiple transcription factors simultaneously in unaligned DNA sequences that may be heterogeneous in DNA composition. Here we describe the basic operation of the web-based version of this sampler. The sampler may be acces-sed at http://bayesweb.wadsworth.org/gibbs/gibbs.html and at http://www.bioinfo.rpi.edu/applications/bayesian/gibbs/gibbs.html. An online user guide is available at http://bayesweb.wadsworth.org/gibbs/bernoulli.html and at http://www.bioinfo.rpi.edu/applications/bayesian/gibbs/manual/bernoulli.html. Solaris, Solaris.x86 and Linux versions of the sampler are available as stand-alone programs for academic and not-for-profit users. Commercial licenses are also available. The Gibbs Recursive Sampler is distributed in accordance with the ISCB level 0 guidelines and a requirement for citation of use in scientific publications.

  10. Neutrophil biology and the next generation of myeloid growth factors.

    PubMed

    Dale, David C

    2009-01-01

    Neutrophils are the body's critical phagocytic cells for defense against bacterial and fungal infections; bone marrow must produce approximately 10 x 10(9) neutrophils/kg/d to maintain normal blood neutrophil counts. Production of neutrophils depends on myeloid growth factors, particularly granulocyte colony-stimulating factor (G-CSF). After the original phase of development, researchers modified these growth factors to increase their size and delay renal clearance, increase their biologic potency, and create unique molecules for business purposes. Pegylated G-CSF is a successful product of these efforts. Researchers have also tried to identify small molecules to serve as oral agents that mimic the parent molecules, but these programs have been less successful. In 2006, the European Medicines Agency established guidelines for the introduction of new biologic medicinal products claimed to be similar to reference products that had previously been granted marketing authorization in the European community, called bio-similars. Globally, new and copied versions of G-CSF and other myeloid growth factors are now appearing. Some properties of the myeloid growth factors are similar to other agents, offering opportunities for the development of alternative drugs and treatments. For example, recent research shows that hematopoietic progenitor cells can be mobilized with a chemokine receptor antagonist, chemotherapy, G-CSF, and granulocyte macrophage colony-stimulating factor. Advances in neutrophil biology coupled with better understanding and development of myeloid growth factors offer great promise for improving the care of patients with cancer and many other disorders.

  11. Assessing empathy in antisocial youth: factor analytic and validation findings.

    PubMed

    Whitt, Ahmed; Howard, Matthew O

    2013-02-01

    Relatively few researchers have examined empathy among antisocial youth, although adolescents may differ greatly in the nature and frequency of their offending behavior. In this investigation, exploratory and confirmatory factor analysis were used (1) to derive a brief empathy scale from the Psychopathic Personality Inventory-Short Version; (2) to assess the construct validity, internal consistency, and potential clinical utility of the derived empathy subscale; and (3) to identify key sociodemographic, psychosocial, and behavioral correlates of empathy in delinquent youth. The 707 adolescent residents of 27 Missouri Division of Youth Services rehabilitation facilities had a mean age of 15.5 yr. (SD = 1.2) and most (87%) were boys. Analysis suggested that the new measure possesses adequate psychometric properties and may be a useful addition to clinical assessments of antisocial youth.

  12. Conduct, Biological Factors and Adult Delinquency in a Longitudinal Perspective.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Magnusson, David

    In the course of a longitudinal research program conducted in Sweden, data were being collected on biological and psychological aspects of individual functioning and on environmental factors for a fairly large representative sample (approximately 1,000) of Swedish males and females between 10 and 27 years of age. Based on data from the…

  13. Impact of biological aging on arterial aging in American Indians: findings from the Strong Heart Family Study

    PubMed Central

    Peng, Hao; Zhu, Yun; Yeh, Fawn; Cole, Shelley A.; Best, Lyle G.; Lin, Jue; Blackburn, Elizabeth; Devereux, Richard B.; Roman, Mary J.; Lee, Elisa T.; Howard, Barbara V.; Zhao, Jinying

    2016-01-01

    Telomere length, a marker of biological aging, has been associated with cardiovascular disease (CVD). Increased arterial stiffness, an indicator of arterial aging, predicts adverse CVD outcomes. However, the relationship between telomere length and arterial stiffness is less well studied. Here we examined the cross-sectional association between leukocyte telomere length (LTL) and arterial stiffness in 2,165 American Indians in the Strong Heart Family Study (SHFS). LTL was measured by qPCR. Arterial stiffness was assessed by stiffness index β. The association between LTL and arterial stiffness was assessed by generalized estimating equation model, adjusting for sociodemographics (age, sex, education level), study site, metabolic factors (fasting glucose, lipids, systolic blood pressure, and kidney function), lifestyle (BMI, smoking, drinking, and physical activity), and prevalent CVD. Results showed that longer LTL was significantly associated with a decreased arterial stiffness (β=-0.070, P=0.007). This association did not attenuate after further adjustment for hsCRP (β=-0.071, P=0.005) or excluding participants with overt CVD (β=-0.068, P=0.012), diabetes (β=-0.070, P=0.005), or chronic kidney disease (β=-0.090, P=0.001). In summary, shorter LTL was significantly associated with an increased arterial stiffness, independent of known risk factors. This finding may shed light on the potential role of biological aging in arterial aging in American Indians. PMID:27540694

  14. Are there biological programming effects for psychological development? Findings from a study of Romanian adoptees.

    PubMed

    Rutter, Michael; O'Connor, Thomas G

    2004-01-01

    Associations between experiences and outcomes could be due to (a) continuation of adversity or (b) organismic changes, including experience-expectant and experience-adaptive developmental programming. The adoption into British families of children who had been reared in profoundly depriving institutions in Romania presented an opportunity to test mechanisms. Romanian children reared from infancy in very depriving institutions for periods up to 42 months were compared with 52 nondeprived UK-born children placed into adoptive families before the age of 6 months. The results at 6 years of age showed substantial normal cognitive and social functioning after the provision of family rearing but also major persistent deficits in a substantial minority. The pattern of findings suggests some form of early biological programming or neural damage stemming from institutional deprivation, but the heterogeneity in outcome indicates that the effects are not deterministic.

  15. CytoKavosh: A Cytoscape Plug-In for Finding Network Motifs in Large Biological Networks

    PubMed Central

    Razaghi Moghadam Kashani, Zahra; Salehzadeh-Yazdi, Ali; Khakabimamaghani, Sahand

    2012-01-01

    Network motifs are small connected sub-graphs that have recently gathered much attention to discover structural behaviors of large and complex networks. Finding motifs with any size is one of the most important problems in complex and large networks. It needs fast and reliable algorithms and tools for achieving this purpose. CytoKavosh is one of the best choices for finding motifs with any given size in any complex network. It relies on a fast algorithm, Kavosh, which makes it faster than other existing tools. Kavosh algorithm applies some well known algorithmic features and includes tricky aspects, which make it an efficient algorithm in this field. CytoKavosh is a Cytoscape plug-in which supports us in finding motifs of given size in a network that is formerly loaded into the Cytoscape work-space (directed or undirected). High performance of CytoKavosh is achieved by dynamically linking highly optimized functions of Kavosh's C++ to the Cytoscape Java program, which makes this plug-in suitable for analyzing large biological networks. Some significant attributes of CytoKavosh is efficiency in time usage and memory and having no limitation related to the implementation in motif size. CytoKavosh is implemented in a visual environment Cytoscape that is convenient for the users to interact and create visual options to analyze the structural behavior of a network. This plug-in can work on any given network and is very simple to use and generates graphical results of discovered motifs with any required details. There is no specific Cytoscape plug-in, specific for finding the network motifs, based on original concept. So, we have introduced for the first time, CytoKavosh as the first plug-in, and we hope that this plug-in can be improved to cover other options to make it the best motif-analyzing tool. PMID:22952659

  16. [Professional biological risk factors of health care workers].

    PubMed

    Gailiene, Greta; Cenenkiene, Regina

    2009-01-01

    Health care workers are attributed to the group at highest risk of biological factors, as they are daily exposed to fluids of the human body. The risk of sharps injuries and exposure to blood is associated with bloodborne infections. The aim of this study was to determine the frequency and type of professional biological risk factors, to evaluate the use of personal protective devices, application of immunoprophylaxis to health care workers in the surgical departments. METHODS. A retrospective study was carried out from January to June 2006. Data were collected in the surgical departments of Hospital of Kaunas University of Medicine. An anonymous questionnaire survey was performed. RESULTS. More than half (51.4%) of the respondents experienced sharps injuries, 62.1% were exposed to biological fluids, and 39.6% of the workers experienced both injury and exposure. In all cases, the hands were injured during sharps injuries. Exposure of healthy skin and eyes to biological fluids occurred in 63% and 20% of the cases, respectively. Majority of exposures were blood splashes (60%). Physicians most frequently experienced sharps injury during the surgery (79.3%), nurses - during the preparation of instruments (35.1%), supporting staff - disposing the waste (75.8%). Commonly physicians were injured by surgical needles (72.4%), nurses - by needlestick (72.4%), and supporting staff - by glass waste (60.6%). Majority of the respondents (86%) were not vaccinated with HB vaccine. No personal protective equipment was used by 14.5% of the respondents during sharps injuries and 5% during exposures. CONCLUSIONS. More than half of the respondents experienced sharps injury or exposure to biological fluids during the study period. Physicians and nurses experience sharps injury and exposure to biological fluids more commonly as compared to supporting staff. Hepatitis B vaccination is insufficient among health care workers.

  17. Biological Stability of Drinking Water: Controlling Factors, Methods, and Challenges.

    PubMed

    Prest, Emmanuelle I; Hammes, Frederik; van Loosdrecht, Mark C M; Vrouwenvelder, Johannes S

    2016-01-01

    Biological stability of drinking water refers to the concept of providing consumers with drinking water of same microbial quality at the tap as produced at the water treatment facility. However, uncontrolled growth of bacteria can occur during distribution in water mains and premise plumbing, and can lead to hygienic (e.g., development of opportunistic pathogens), aesthetic (e.g., deterioration of taste, odor, color) or operational (e.g., fouling or biocorrosion of pipes) problems. Drinking water contains diverse microorganisms competing for limited available nutrients for growth. Bacterial growth and interactions are regulated by factors, such as (i) type and concentration of available organic and inorganic nutrients, (ii) type and concentration of residual disinfectant, (iii) presence of predators, such as protozoa and invertebrates, (iv) environmental conditions, such as water temperature, and (v) spatial location of microorganisms (bulk water, sediment, or biofilm). Water treatment and distribution conditions in water mains and premise plumbing affect each of these factors and shape bacterial community characteristics (abundance, composition, viability) in distribution systems. Improved understanding of bacterial interactions in distribution systems and of environmental conditions impact is needed for better control of bacterial communities during drinking water production and distribution. This article reviews (i) existing knowledge on biological stability controlling factors and (ii) how these factors are affected by drinking water production and distribution conditions. In addition, (iii) the concept of biological stability is discussed in light of experience with well-established and new analytical methods, enabling high throughput analysis and in-depth characterization of bacterial communities in drinking water. We discussed, how knowledge gained from novel techniques will improve design and monitoring of water treatment and distribution systems in order

  18. Biological Stability of Drinking Water: Controlling Factors, Methods, and Challenges

    PubMed Central

    Prest, Emmanuelle I.; Hammes, Frederik; van Loosdrecht, Mark C. M.; Vrouwenvelder, Johannes S.

    2016-01-01

    Biological stability of drinking water refers to the concept of providing consumers with drinking water of same microbial quality at the tap as produced at the water treatment facility. However, uncontrolled growth of bacteria can occur during distribution in water mains and premise plumbing, and can lead to hygienic (e.g., development of opportunistic pathogens), aesthetic (e.g., deterioration of taste, odor, color) or operational (e.g., fouling or biocorrosion of pipes) problems. Drinking water contains diverse microorganisms competing for limited available nutrients for growth. Bacterial growth and interactions are regulated by factors, such as (i) type and concentration of available organic and inorganic nutrients, (ii) type and concentration of residual disinfectant, (iii) presence of predators, such as protozoa and invertebrates, (iv) environmental conditions, such as water temperature, and (v) spatial location of microorganisms (bulk water, sediment, or biofilm). Water treatment and distribution conditions in water mains and premise plumbing affect each of these factors and shape bacterial community characteristics (abundance, composition, viability) in distribution systems. Improved understanding of bacterial interactions in distribution systems and of environmental conditions impact is needed for better control of bacterial communities during drinking water production and distribution. This article reviews (i) existing knowledge on biological stability controlling factors and (ii) how these factors are affected by drinking water production and distribution conditions. In addition, (iii) the concept of biological stability is discussed in light of experience with well-established and new analytical methods, enabling high throughput analysis and in-depth characterization of bacterial communities in drinking water. We discussed, how knowledge gained from novel techniques will improve design and monitoring of water treatment and distribution systems in order

  19. 76 FR 15935 - Availability of an Environmental Assessment and Finding of No Significant Impact for a Biological...

    Federal Register 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014

    2011-03-22

    ... Significant Impact for a Biological Control Agent for Air Potato AGENCY: Animal and Plant Health Inspection... relative to the control of air potato (Dioscorea bulbifera). Based on its finding of no significant impact... biological control agent to reduce the severity of air potato (Dioscorea bulbifera) infestations. On...

  20. T-box transcription factors in cancer biology.

    PubMed

    Wansleben, Sabina; Peres, Jade; Hare, Shannagh; Goding, Colin R; Prince, Sharon

    2014-12-01

    The evolutionarily conserved T-box family of transcription factors have critical and well-established roles in embryonic development. More recently, T-box factors have also gained increasing prominence in the field of cancer biology where a wide range of cancers exhibit deregulated expression of T-box factors that possess tumour suppressor and/or tumour promoter functions. Of these the best characterised is TBX2, whose expression is upregulated in cancers including breast, pancreatic, ovarian, liver, endometrial adenocarcinoma, glioblastomas, gastric, uterine cervical and melanoma. Understanding the role and regulation of TBX2, as well as other T-box factors, in contributing directly to tumour progression, and especially in suppression of senescence and control of invasiveness suggests that targeting TBX2 expression or function alone or in combination with currently available chemotherapeutic agents may represent a therapeutic strategy for cancer.

  1. Cultural and biological factors modulate spatial biases over development.

    PubMed

    Girelli, Luisa; Marinelli, Chiara Valeria; Grossi, Giuseppe; Arduino, Lisa S

    2017-01-19

    Increasing evidence supports the contribution of both biological and cultural factors to visuospatial processing. The present study adds to the literature by exploring the interplay of perceptual and linguistic mechanisms in determining visuospatial asymmetries in adults (Experiment 1) and children (Experiment 2). In particular, pre-schoolers (3 and 5 year-olds), school-aged children (8 year-old), and adult participants were required to bisect different types of stimuli, that is, lines, words, and figure strings. In accordance with the literature, results yielded a leftward bias for lines and words and a rightward bias for figure strings, in adult participants. More critically, different biases were found for lines, words, and figure strings in children as a function of age, reflecting the impact of both cultural and biological factors on the processing of different visuospatial materials. Specifically, an adult-like pattern of results emerged only in the older group of children (8 year-old), but not in pre-schoolers. Results are discussed in terms of literacy, reading habits exposure, and biological maturation.

  2. PCSK9 inhibition to reduce cardiovascular disease risk: recent findings from the biology of PCSK9

    PubMed Central

    Tavori, Hagai; Giunzioni, Ilaria; Fazio, Sergio

    2015-01-01

    Purpose of review Review novel insights into the biology of proprotein convertase subtilisin/kexin 9 (PCSK9) that may explain the extreme efficiency of PCSK9 inhibition and the unexpected metabolic effects resulting from PCSK9 monoclonal antibody therapy, and may identify additional patients as target of therapy. Recent findings For over 20 years, the practical knowledge of cholesterol metabolism has centered around cellular mechanisms, and around the idea that statin therapy is the essential step to control metabolic abnormalities for cardiovascular risk management. This view has been embraced by the recent AHA/ACC guidelines, but is being challenged by recent studies including nonstatin medications and by the development of a new class of cholesterol-lowering agents that seems destined to early US Food and Drug Administration approval. The discovery of PCSK9 – a circulating protein that regulates hepatic low-density lipoprotein (LDL) receptor and serum LDL cholesterol levels – has led to a race for its therapeutic inhibition. Recent findings on PCSK9 regulation and pleiotropic effects will help identify additional patient groups likely to benefit from the inhibitory therapy and unravel the full potential of PCSK9 inhibition therapy. Summary Injectable human monoclonal antibodies to block the interaction between PCSK9 and LDL receptor are demonstrating extraordinary efficacy (LDL reductions of up to 70%) and almost the absence of any side-effects. A more moderate effect is seen on other lipoprotein parameters, with the exception of lipoprotein(a) levels. We describe mechanisms that can explain the effect on lipoprotein(a), predict a potential effect on postprandial triglyderides, and suggest a new category of patients for anti-PCSK9 therapy. PMID:25692926

  3. An algorithm for finding biologically significant features in microarray data based on a priori manifold learning.

    PubMed

    Hira, Zena M; Trigeorgis, George; Gillies, Duncan F

    2014-01-01

    Microarray databases are a large source of genetic data, which, upon proper analysis, could enhance our understanding of biology and medicine. Many microarray experiments have been designed to investigate the genetic mechanisms of cancer, and analytical approaches have been applied in order to classify different types of cancer or distinguish between cancerous and non-cancerous tissue. However, microarrays are high-dimensional datasets with high levels of noise and this causes problems when using machine learning methods. A popular approach to this problem is to search for a set of features that will simplify the structure and to some degree remove the noise from the data. The most widely used approach to feature extraction is principal component analysis (PCA) which assumes a multivariate Gaussian model of the data. More recently, non-linear methods have been investigated. Among these, manifold learning algorithms, for example Isomap, aim to project the data from a higher dimensional space onto a lower dimension one. We have proposed a priori manifold learning for finding a manifold in which a representative set of microarray data is fused with relevant data taken from the KEGG pathway database. Once the manifold has been constructed the raw microarray data is projected onto it and clustering and classification can take place. In contrast to earlier fusion based methods, the prior knowledge from the KEGG databases is not used in, and does not bias the classification process--it merely acts as an aid to find the best space in which to search the data. In our experiments we have found that using our new manifold method gives better classification results than using either PCA or conventional Isomap.

  4. Translating Lung Function Genome-Wide Association Study (GWAS) Findings: New Insights for Lung Biology.

    PubMed

    Kheirallah, A K; Miller, S; Hall, I P; Sayers, I

    2016-01-01

    Chronic respiratory diseases are a major cause of worldwide mortality and morbidity. Although hereditary severe deficiency of α1 antitrypsin (A1AD) has been established to cause emphysema, A1AD accounts for only ∼ 1% of Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD) cases. Genome-wide association studies (GWAS) have been successful at detecting multiple loci harboring variants predicting the variation in lung function measures and risk of COPD. However, GWAS are incapable of distinguishing causal from noncausal variants. Several approaches can be used for functional translation of genetic findings. These approaches have the scope to identify underlying alleles and pathways that are important in lung function and COPD. Computational methods aim at effective functional variant prediction by combining experimentally generated regulatory information with associated region of the human genome. Classically, GWAS association follow-up concentrated on manipulation of a single gene. However association data has identified genetic variants in >50 loci predicting disease risk or lung function. Therefore there is a clear precedent for experiments that interrogate multiple candidate genes in parallel, which is now possible with genome editing technology. Gene expression profiling can be used for effective discovery of biological pathways underpinning gene function. This information may be used for informed decisions about cellular assays post genetic manipulation. Investigating respiratory phenotypes in human lung tissue and specific gene knockout mice is a valuable in vivo approach that can complement in vitro work. Herein, we review state-of-the-art in silico, in vivo, and in vitro approaches that may be used to accelerate functional translation of genetic findings.

  5. 76 FR 8708 - Availability of an Environmental Assessment and Finding of No Significant Impact for a Biological...

    Federal Register 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014

    2011-02-15

    ... Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service Availability of an Environmental Assessment and Finding of No Significant Impact for a Biological Control Agent for Arundo donax AGENCY: Animal and Plant Health Inspection... and finding of no significant impact have been prepared by the Animal and Plant Health...

  6. "The role of oxytocin in psychiatric disorders: A review of biological and therapeutic research findings"

    PubMed Central

    Cochran, David; Fallon, Daniel; Hill, Michael; Frazier, Jean A.

    2014-01-01

    Oxytocin is a peptide hormone integral in parturition, milk let-down, and maternal behaviors that has been demonstrated in animal studies to be important in the formation of pair bonds and in social behaviors. This hormone is increasingly recognized as an important regulator of human social behaviors, including social decision making, evaluating and responding to social stimuli, mediating social interactions, and forming social memories. In addition, oxytocin is intricately involved in a broad array of neuropsychiatric functions, and may be a common factor important in multiple psychiatric disorders such as autism, schizophrenia, mood and anxiety disorders. This review article examines the extant literature on the evidence for oxytocin dysfunction in a variety of psychiatric disorders and highlights the need for further research to understand the complex role of the oxytocin system in psychiatric disease to pave the way for developing new therapeutic modalities. Articles were selected that involved human participants with various psychiatric disorders, either comparing oxytocin biology to healthy controls or examining the effects of exogenous oxytocin administration. PMID:24651556

  7. Human milk and formulae: neurotrophic and new biological factors.

    PubMed

    Serpero, Laura D; Frigiola, Alessandro; Gazzolo, Diego

    2012-03-01

    Mother milk is widely accepted to be a unique product believed to contain biological factors involved in the regulation of newborn optimal growth including brain when compared to milk-formula milks. In this setting, there is growing evidence that in milk-formula neuro-oxidative stress biomarkers, neurotrophic proteins and calcium binding proteins, known to be involved in a cascade of events leading to brain, cardiac and vascular development/damage, are to date lacking or at a lower concentration than breast milk. Therefore, this review is aimed at offering additional insights to the role in human milk of some selected biomarkers such as: i) neurotrophic factors such as Activin A; ii) Calcium binding protein such as S100B and, iii) heat shock protein known to be involved in oxidative stress response (namely hemeoxygenase-1, HO-1 or Heat shock Protein 32, HSP32).

  8. Finding Clarity by Fostering Confusion: Reflections on Teaching an Undergraduate Integrated Biological Systems Course

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Martin, Kirsten H.

    2015-01-01

    Undergraduate biology programs in smaller liberal arts colleges are increasingly becoming focused on health science fields. This narrowing of focus potentially decreases opportunities for these students to explore other sub-fields of biology. This perspectives article highlights how one small university in Connecticut decided to institute a…

  9. ATF2, a paradigm of the multifaceted regulation of transcription factors in biology and disease.

    PubMed

    Watson, Gregory; Ronai, Ze'ev; Lau, Eric

    2017-02-15

    Stringent transcriptional regulation is crucial for normal cellular biology and organismal development. Perturbations in the proper regulation of transcription factors can result in numerous pathologies, including cancer. Thus, understanding how transcription factors are regulated and how they are dysregulated in disease states is key to the therapeutic targeting of these factors and/or the pathways that they regulate. Activating transcription factor 2 (ATF2) has been studied in a number of developmental and pathological conditions. Recent findings have shed light on the transcriptional, post-transcriptional, and post-translational regulatory mechanisms that influence ATF2 function, and thus, the transcriptional programs coordinated by ATF2. Given our current knowledge of its multiple levels of regulation and function, ATF2 represents a paradigm for the mechanistic complexity that can regulate transcription factor function. Thus, increasing our understanding of the regulation and function of ATF2 will provide insights into fundamental regulatory mechanisms that influence how cells integrate extracellular and intracellular signals into a genomic response through transcription factors. Characterization of ATF2 dysfunction in the context of pathological conditions, particularly in cancer biology and response to therapy, will be important in understanding how pathways controlled by ATF2 or other transcription factors might be therapeutically exploited. In this review, we provide an overview of the currently known upstream regulators and downstream targets of ATF2.

  10. Factors Potentially Influencing Student Acceptance of Biological Evolution

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wiles, Jason R.

    This investigation explored scientific, religious, and otherwise nonscientific factors that may influence student acceptance of biological evolution and related concepts, how students perceived these factors to have influenced their levels of acceptance of evolution and changes therein, and what patterns arose among students' articulations of how their levels of acceptance of evolution may have changed. This exploration also measured the extent to which students' levels of acceptance changed following a treatment designed to address factors identified as potentially affecting student acceptance of evolution. Acceptance of evolution was measured using the MATE instrument (Rutledge and Warden, 1999; Rutledge and Sadler, 2007) among participants enrolled in a secondary-level academic program during the summer prior to their final year of high school and as they transitioned to the post-secondary level. Student acceptance of evolution was measured to be significantly higher than pre-treatment levels both immediately following and slightly over one year after treatment. Qualitative data from informal questionnaires, from formal course evaluations, and from semi-structured interviews of students engaged in secondary level education and former students at various stages of post-secondary education confirmed that the suspected factors were perceived by participants to have influenced their levels of acceptance of evolution. Furthermore, participant reports provided insight regarding the relative effects they perceived these factors to have had on their evolution acceptance levels. Additionally, many participants reported that their science teachers in public schools had avoided, omitted, or denigrated evolution during instruction, and several of these students expressed frustration regarding what they perceived to have been a lack of education of an important scientific principle. Finally, no students expressed feelings of being offended by having been taught about

  11. International biological standards for coagulation factors and inhibitors.

    PubMed

    Hubbard, Anthony R

    2007-04-01

    The use of international biological standards during the last 30 years has proved extremely successful in promoting global harmonization of estimates between laboratories and methods. Experience has led to the identification of physical criteria essential for standards to be suitable for long-term use. High precision of liquid filling coupled with low residual moisture and oxygen and the use of sealed glass ampoules have been found consistent with homogeneous and stable International Standards (ISs). Most plasma coagulation factors and inhibitors are calibrated in International Units (IU), which are defined as the amount of analyte in 1 mL of normal pooled plasma. Adoption of the IU has provided clarity in the definition of normal and abnormal states and has facilitated dose calculation for replacement therapy. The assay of like-versus-like materials (e.g., concentrate versus concentrate) has been found to improve interlaboratory agreement and there are now both plasma and concentrate ISs available for many coagulation factors and inhibitors. Studies into the assay of recombinant factor VIII have indicated that additional measures, such as modifications to assay methodology, are necessary to reduce interlaboratory variability. This experience may prove valuable in the future, when we have to deal increasingly with the challenges to standardization associated with the products of bioengineering.

  12. The epidermal growth factor receptor family: Biology driving targeted therapeutics

    PubMed Central

    Wieduwilt, M. J.; Moasser, M. M.

    2011-01-01

    The epidermal growth factor family of receptor tyrosine kinases (ErbBs) plays essential roles in regulating cell proliferation, survival, differentiation and migration. The ErbB receptors carry out both redundant and restricted functions in mammalian development and in the maintenance of tissues in the adult mammal. Loss of regulation of the ErbB receptors underlies many human diseases, most notably cancer. Our understanding of the function and complex regulation of these receptors has fueled the development of targeted therapeutic agents for human malignancies in the last 15 years. Here we review the biology of ErbB receptors, including their structure, signaling, regulation, and roles in development and disease, then briefly touch on their increasing roles as targets for cancer therapy. PMID:18259690

  13. 76 FR 13597 - Availability of an Environmental Assessment and Finding of No Significant Impact for a Biological...

    Federal Register 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014

    2011-03-14

    ... finding of no significant impact relative to the release of the hawkweed gall wasp, Aulacidea... hawkweed gall wasp, Aulacidea subterminalis, into the continental United States for the biological control... no significant impact (FONSI) regarding the release of the hawkweed gall wasp into the...

  14. Biologics formulation factors affecting metal leachables from stainless steel.

    PubMed

    Zhou, Shuxia; Schöneich, Christian; Singh, Satish K

    2011-03-01

    An area of increasing concern and scientific scrutiny is the potential contamination of drug products by leachables entering the product during manufacturing and storage. These contaminants may either have a direct safety impact on the patients or act indirectly through the alteration of the physicochemical properties of the product. In the case of biotherapeutics, trace amounts of metal contaminants can arise from various sources, but mainly from contact with stainless steel (ss). The effect of the various factors, buffer species, solution fill volume per unit contact surface area, metal chelators, and pH, on metal leachables from contact with ss over time were investigated individually. Three major metal leachables, iron, chromium, and nickel, were monitored by inductively coupled plasma-mass spectrometry because they are the major components of 316L ss. Iron was primarily used to evaluate the effect of each factor since it is the most abundant. It was observed that each studied factor exhibited its own effect on metal leachables from contact with ss. The effect of buffer species and pH exhibited temperature dependence over the studied temperature range. The metal leachables decreased with the increased fill volume (mL) per unit contact ss surface area (cm(2)) but a plateau was achieved at approximately 3 mL/cm(2). Metal chelators produced the strongest effect in facilitating metal leaching. In order to minimize the metal leachables and optimize biological product stability, each formulation factor must be evaluated for its impact, to balance its risk and benefit in achieving the target drug product shelf life.

  15. The College Student and Marijuana: Research Findings Concerning Adverse Biological and Psychological Effects.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Nicholi, Armand M., Jr.

    1983-01-01

    This paper focuses on current knowledge about adverse biological and psychological affects of marijuana use, with special reference to risks for college students. Short-term effects on intellectual functioning and perceptual-motor coordination and long-term effects on reproduction and motivation are highlighted. (PP)

  16. Clinical and Biological Risk Factors for Neuropsychological Impairment in Alcohol Use Disorder

    PubMed Central

    Ritz, Ludivine; Coulbault, Laurent; Lannuzel, Coralie; Boudehent, Céline; Segobin, Shailendra; Eustache, Francis; Vabret, François; Pitel, Anne Lise; Beaunieux, Hélène

    2016-01-01

    The effects of alcoholism on cognitive and motor functioning are heterogeneous. While the role of some factors (patterns of alcohol consumption, eating habits or associated liver disease) has been hypothesized, the origins of this heterogeneity remain difficult to establish. The goals of the present study were thus to identify the clinical and biological risk factors for alcohol-related neuropsychological impairments and to determine the threshold beyond which these risk factors can be considered significant. Thirty alcoholic patients and 15 healthy controls had a blood test and underwent a neuropsychological examination. Alcohol severity measures, and liver, thiamine and malnutrition variables, were included in logistic regression models to determine the risk factors for cognitive and motor impairments (executive functions, visuospatial abilities, verbal episodic memory, ataxia), as well as those related to the severity of patients’ overall neuropsychological profile (moderate or severe impairments). Liver fibrosis was found to be a risk factor for executive impairments and also for ataxia, when it was associated with long-term alcohol misuse and symptoms of withdrawal. Altered thiamine metabolism was solely predictive of verbal episodic memory impairments. This combination of biological abnormalities was associated with a profile of moderate neuropsychological impairments. Malnutrition was associated with a profile of more severe impairments. Malnutrition, altered liver function and thiamine metabolism explain, at least partially, the heterogeneity of alcohol-related neuropsychological impairments. Our findings could allow clinicians to identify patients at particular risk of severe neuropsychological impairments before the onset of irreversible and debilitating neurological complications. PMID:27617840

  17. [Chromium exposure biological indices and clinical findings in chromium plating industry (author's transl)].

    PubMed

    Franchini, I; Cavatorta, A; Mutti, A; Marcato, M; Bottazzi, D; Cigala, F

    1977-09-01

    According to the investigations carried out on workers of two chromium plating plants, the authors believe that chromium urinary excretion allows to determine the degree of its acute absorption. Moreover, the renal clearance of diffusible chromium allows the evaluation of chromium body burden and is related to the duration as well as to the severity of exposure. This interpretation is supported by the relation between the exposure biological indexes and the clinical and instrumental investigations which make possible the evaluation of lesions caused by chromium exposure, mostly concerning the respiratory system.

  18. Computerized image-searching method for finding correct patients for misfiled chest radiographs in a PACS server by use of biological fingerprints.

    PubMed

    Toge, Risa; Morishita, Junji; Sasaki, Yasuo; Doi, Kunio

    2013-07-01

    We have developed an automated image-searching method based on biological fingerprints for identifying correct patients in misfiled chest radiographs in a picture archiving and communication system (PACS) server. We used five biological fingerprints including distinctive anatomic structures in a misfiled chest radiograph of an unknown patient to find another image of the same patient stored with correct patient information in a PACS server. The correlation values were determined for the corresponding biological fingerprints in all images in the image server. The correlation indices as a measure of the overall similarity of the two images were determined from the summation of five correlation values and the combination of correlation values with the weighting factors. Finally, the correct patient was identified automatically by the image with the highest correlation index. By use of the summation of five correlation values as the correlation index, 78.0% (156/200) of the 200 patients for misfiled images were correctly identified in the database. When we applied the weighting factors for each biological fingerprint to determine the correlation index, the performance in identifying the correct patient was improved to 87.5% (175/200). An additional 5.0% (10/200) of images were included in the Top 10 ranking of the correlation index in the database. These cases could be identified manually by radiology personnel. We conclude that the automated image-searching method based on biological fingerprints with weighting factors would be useful for identification of the correct patient in the case of misfiled chest radiographs in a PACS server.

  19. Biological consequences of stress: conflicting findings on the association between job strain and blood pressure.

    PubMed

    Fornari, C; Ferrario, M; Menni, C; Sega, R; Facchetti, R; Cesana, G C

    2007-11-01

    The primary objective is to verify the relation between job strain and clinic blood pressure in a working population from the Milan municipality (1,909 men, 3,786 women) enrolled from 1992 to 1996. Job strain was investigated through the Karasek model. Clinic blood pressure was evaluated using standard procedures from the MONICA project. The association between the two was calculated controlling for age, education, smoking, body mass index, total and high-density lipoprotein (HDL) cholesterol. Significantly, associations were found for systolic blood pressure in men and for both systolic and diastolic blood pressure in women. However, these results do not reflect biological plausibility. The relationship between job strain and blood pressure is an unfinished business: sample characteristics and measurement methods should be carefully considered.

  20. Factors Moderating Children's Adjustment to Parental Separation: Findings from a Community Study in England

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Cheng, Helen; Dunn, Judy; O'Connor, Thomas G.; Golding, Jean

    2006-01-01

    Research findings show that there is marked variability in children's response to parental separation, but few studies identify the sources of this variation. This prospective longitudinal study examines the factors modifying children's adjustment to parental separation in a community sample of 5,635 families in England. Children's…

  1. An unsupervised learning approach to find ovarian cancer genes through integration of biological data

    PubMed Central

    2015-01-01

    Cancer is a disease characterized largely by the accumulation of out-of-control somatic mutations during the lifetime of a patient. Distinguishing driver mutations from passenger mutations has posed a challenge in modern cancer research. With the advanced development of microarray experiments and clinical studies, a large numbers of candidate cancer genes have been extracted and distinguishing informative genes out of them is essential. As a matter of fact, we proposed to find the informative genes for cancer by using mutation data from ovarian cancers in our framework. In our model we utilized the patient gene mutation profile, gene expression data and gene gene interactions network to construct a graphical representation of genes and patients. Markov processes for mutation and patients are triggered separately. After this process, cancer genes are prioritized automatically by examining their scores at their stationary distributions in the eigenvector. Extensive experiments demonstrate that the integration of heterogeneous sources of information is essential in finding important cancer genes. PMID:26328548

  2. HotPatch: A Statistical Approach to Finding Biologically Relevant Features on Protein Surfaces

    PubMed Central

    Pettit, Frank K.; Bare, Emiko; Tsai, Albert; Bowie, James U.

    2007-01-01

    We describe a fully automated algorithm for finding functional sites on protein structures. Our method finds surface patches of unusual physicochemical properties on protein structures, and estimates the patches’ probability of overlapping functional sites. Other methods for predicting the locations of specific types of functional sites exist, but in previous analyses, it has been difficult to compare methods when they are applied to different types of sites. Thus, we introduce a new statistical framework that enables rigorous comparisons of the usefulness of different physicochemical properties for predicting virtually any kind of functional site. The program’s statistical models were trained for 11 individual properties (electrostatics, concavity, hydrophobicity, etc.) and for 15 neural network combination properties, all optimized and tested on 15 diverse protein functions. To simulate what to expect if the program were run on proteins of unknown function, as might arise from structural genomics, we tested it on 618 proteins of diverse mixed functions. In the higher-scoring top half of all predictions, a functional residue could typically be found within the first 1.7 residues chosen at random. The program may or may not use partial information about the protein’s function type as an input, depending on which statistical model the user chooses to employ. If function type is used as an additional constraint, prediction accuracy usually increases, and is particularly good for enzymes, DNA-interacting sites, and oligomeric interfaces. The program can be accessed online at http://hotpatch.mbi.ucla.edu. PMID:17451744

  3. Mars - is it a habitable planet? - A biological approach to find answers to this question

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    de Vera, J. P.; Lorek, A.; Koncz, A.; Khan, A.; Schulze-Makuch, D.; Möhlmann, D.; Spohn, T.

    2012-12-01

    An overview on different experiments with photosynthetic organisms such as extremophilic microorganisms like lichens and cyanobacteria and even higher plants shows the different degrees of adaptation. The most resistant organisms can be found in tropic deserts and in polar and alpine habitats. The reason for their resistance can be explained by their occurrence in intensely irradiated, very dry and/or cold environments which are supposed to be as close as possible to Martian surface conditions. A systematically approach comparing measurements on photosynthetic activity of a variety of organisms in relation to measured environmental parameters obtained in Mars analog field sites with data collected from space exposed samples or during Mars simulation experiments will show differences and common results after analyzing the investigated organisms. Some of the investigated species were exposed during different experiments either directly to real space conditions on space exposure platforms like BIOPAN and EXPOSE-E on the International Space Station or to Mars simulation conditions in a Mars simulation chamber. Some of these species were also exposed to both of the extreme environmental conditions. In parallel environmental parameters were monitored in space and in the simulation chambers to get an impression about the influence of each of the tested parameters on metabolic activity. The outcome of this work might be relevant to classify e.g. Mars as a habitable planet by a new experimental and biological approach and to evaluate how bio-regenerative life supporting systems might be feasible and discuss the likelihood of terra forming Mars in the far future.

  4. Social and Behavioral Risk Marker Clustering Associated with Biological Risk Factors for Coronary Heart Disease: NHANES 2001–2004

    PubMed Central

    Everage, Nicholas J.; Linkletter, Crystal D.; Gjelsvik, Annie; McGarvey, Stephen T.; Loucks, Eric B.

    2014-01-01

    Background. Social and behavioral risk markers (e.g., physical activity, diet, smoking, and socioeconomic position) cluster; however, little is known whether clustering is associated with coronary heart disease (CHD) risk. Objectives were to determine if sociobehavioral clustering is associated with biological CHD risk factors (total cholesterol, HDL cholesterol, systolic blood pressure, body mass index, waist circumference, and diabetes) and whether associations are independent of individual clustering components. Methods. Participants included 4,305 males and 4,673 females aged ≥20 years from NHANES 2001–2004. Sociobehavioral Risk Marker Index (SRI) included a summary score of physical activity, fruit/vegetable consumption, smoking, and educational attainment. Regression analyses evaluated associations of SRI with aforementioned biological CHD risk factors. Receiver operator curve analyses assessed independent predictive ability of SRI. Results. Healthful clustering (SRI = 0) was associated with improved biological CHD risk factor levels in 5 of 6 risk factors in females and 2 of 6 risk factors in males. Adding SRI to models containing age, race, and individual SRI components did not improve C-statistics. Conclusions. Findings suggest that healthful sociobehavioral risk marker clustering is associated with favorable CHD risk factor levels, particularly in females. These findings should inform social ecological interventions that consider health impacts of addressing social and behavioral risk factors. PMID:24719858

  5. Human Factors Engineering and Ergonomics Analysis for the Canister Storage Building (CSB) Results and Findings

    SciTech Connect

    GARVIN, L.J.

    1999-09-20

    The purpose for this supplemental report is to follow-up and update the information in SNF-3907, Human Factors Engineering (HFE) Analysis: Results and Findings. This supplemental report responds to applicable U.S. Department of Energy Safety Analysis Report review team comments and questions. This Human Factors Engineering and Ergonomics (HFE/Erg) analysis was conducted from April 1999 to July 1999; SNF-3907 was based on analyses accomplished in October 1998. The HFE/Erg findings presented in this report and SNF-3907, along with the results of HNF-3553, Spent Nuclear Fuel Project, Final Safety Analysis Report, Annex A, ''Canister Storage Building Final Safety Analysis Report,'' Chapter A3.0, ''Hazards and Accidents Analyses,'' provide the technical basis for preparing or updating HNF-3553. Annex A, Chaptex A13.0, ''Human Factors Engineering.'' The findings presented in this report allow the HNF-3553 Chapter 13.0, ''Human Factors,'' to respond fully to the HFE requirements established in DOE Order 5480.23, Nuclear Safety Analysis Reports.

  6. Computational approaches to find the active binding sites of biological targets against busulfan.

    PubMed

    Karthick, T; Tandon, Poonam

    2016-06-01

    Determination of electrophilic and nucleophilic sites of a molecule is the primary task to find the active sites of the lead molecule. In the present study, the active sites of busulfan have been predicted by molecular electrostatic potential surface and Fukui function analysis with the help of dispersion corrected density functional theory. Similarly, the identification of active binding sites of the proteins against lead compound plays a vital role in the field of drug discovery. Rigid and flexible molecular docking approaches are used for this purpose. For rigid docking, Hex 8.0.0 software employing fast Fourier transform (FFT) algorithm has been used. The partial flexible blind docking simulations have been performed with AutoDock 4.2 software; where a Lamarckian genetic algorithm is employed. The results showed that the most electrophilic atoms of busulfan bind with the targets. It is clear from the docking studies that busulfan has inhibition capability toward the targets 12CA and 1BZM. Graphical Abstract Docking of ligand and protein.

  7. Factors on polygamy in sub-Saharan Africa: findings based on the Demographic and Health Surveys.

    PubMed

    Hayase, Y; Liaw, K L

    1997-09-01

    This study presents a brief review of the historical and cultural context of polygamy in sub-Saharan Africa and examines the sociodemographic factors that influence polygamous union formation. Data were obtained from the Demographic and Health Surveys in Ghana (1988), Senegal (1986), Kenya (1989), and Zimbabwe (1988-89). The sample was restricted to currently married or cohabitating women. The proportion of women in a polygamous union was 48% in Senegal, 31% in Ghana, 23% in Kenya, and 16% in Zimbabwe. The authors state that rates may have been higher in Senegal and Ghana due to the higher involvement of women in the cultivation of root crops and trading at local markets. Rate differences indicated a greater proportion of men and women with no education and Muslim affiliation in the high polygamy countries of Senegal and Ghana in West Africa compared to Kenya and Zimbabwe. Single factor analysis was performed for the effects of women's formal education, men's formal education, religion, urbanization, current age, age at first marriage, and ethnicity. Multivariate analysis by country indicated the importance of rising husbands' education and the lack of significance of women's education. As husband's education rose to the secondary level, polygamy declined. Other significant factors were religion, ethnicity, and current age, which was the most important factor. In Ghana, the effect of husbands' education overwhelmed the effect of women's education. Current age was the most important explanatory factor, followed by religion. In Kenya, both women's and men's education, ethnicity, urbanization, and age were significant factors. Ethnicity was the most important factor. In Zimbabwe, every factor was significant. Women's education was the most important factor. Findings reveal different prevalence of polygamy and different effects of sociodemographic factors.

  8. Sedimentary selenium as a causal factor for adverse biological effects: Toxicity thresholds and stream modeling

    SciTech Connect

    Va Derveer, W.; Canton, S.

    1995-12-31

    Selenium (Se) in the aquatic environment exhibits a strong association with particulate organic matter and as a result, measurements of waterborne concentration can be an unreliable predictor of bioaccumulation and adverse effects. Particulate-bound Se, typically measured as sedimentary Se, has been repeatedly implicated as a causal factor for Se bioaccumulation and subsequent potential for reproductive failures in fish and/or birds at sites receiving coal-fired power plant and refinery effluents as well as irrigation drainage. In fact, the premise that adverse biological effects are largely induced by sedimentary Se satisfies all of Hill`s criteria for a causal association. Despite these findings, most efforts to control Se continue to focus on waterborne concentrations because sedimentary toxicity thresholds are largely unknown. Sedimentary Se and associated biological effects data from studies of Se-bearing industrial effluent and irrigation drainage were compiled to initiate development of biological effects thresholds, The probability of adverse effects on fish or birds appears to be low up to a sedimentary Se concentration of about 2.8 {micro}g/g dry weight and high at 6.4 {micro}g/g dry weight (10th and 50th percentile of effects data, respectively). In addition, a preliminary regression model was derived for predicting dissolved to sedimentary Se transfer in streams as an interactive function of site-specific sedimentary organic carbon content (R{sup 2} = 0,870, p < 0.001) based on irrigation drainage studies in Colorado. This dissolved Se interaction with sedimentary organic carbon provides a possible explanation for the variable biological response to waterborne Se-organic-rich sites are predisposed to greater Se bioaccumulation and subsequent biological effects than organic-poor sites.

  9. Bioprospecting Finds the Toughest Biological Material: Extraordinary Silk from a Giant Riverine Orb Spider

    PubMed Central

    Agnarsson, Ingi; Kuntner, Matjaž; Blackledge, Todd A.

    2010-01-01

    . This hypothesis predicts that rapid change in material properties of silk co-occurred with ecological shifts within the genus, and can thus be tested by combining material science, behavioral observations, and phylogenetics. Our findings highlight the potential benefits of natural history–informed bioprospecting to discover silks, as well as other materials, with novel and exceptional properties to serve as models in biomimicry. PMID:20856804

  10. Childhood Trauma Questionnaire (CTQ) in Brazilian Samples of Different Age Groups: Findings from Confirmatory Factor Analysis

    PubMed Central

    Grassi-Oliveira, Rodrigo; Cogo-Moreira, Hugo; Salum, Giovanni Abrahão; Brietzke, Elisa; Viola, Thiago Wendt; Manfro, Gisele Gus; Kristensen, Christian Haag; Arteche, Adriane Xavier

    2014-01-01

    The Childhood Trauma Questionnaire (CTQ) is internationally accepted as a key tool for the assessment of childhood abuse and neglect experiences. However, there are relative few psychometric studies available and some authors have proposed two different factor solutions. We examined the dimensional structure and internal consistency of the Brazilian version of the CTQ. A total of 1,925 participants from eight different clinical and non-clinical samples including adolescents, adults and elders were considered in this study. First, we performed Confirmatory Factor Analysis to investigate the goodness of fit of the two proposed competitive factor structure models for the CTQ. We also investigated the internal consistency of all factors. Second, multi-group analyses were used to investigate measurement invariance and population heterogeneity across age groups and sex. Our findings revealed that the alternative factor structure as opposed to the original factor structure was the most appropriate model within adolescents and adults Brazilian samples. We provide further evidence for the validity and reliability of the CTQ within the Brazilian samples and report that the alternative model showed an improvement in fit indexes and may be a better alternative over the original model. PMID:24475237

  11. Fact-finding survey of actual garbage discharged from dormitory and its biological anaerobic-aerobic treatment.

    PubMed

    Imai, T; Ukita, M; Sekine, M; Fukagawa, M; Nakanishi, H

    2000-01-01

    The objective of this study is to find a possibility of complete treatment of garbage and resource recovery (production of methane from available utility of carbon resource in garbage) by biological treatment process. As the first step, a fact-finding survey of actual garbage discharged from the dormitory of the Ube National College of Technology (equivalent to 300 population) was carried out. Second, the combined biological anaerobic-aerobic treatment, i.e. combination of upflow anaerobic sludge blanket (UASB) process and aerobic membrane bioreactor (AMB) process, was applied to the garbage treatment. The applicability and efficiency of this system were investigated in this study. The survey results showed that the composition and quantity of garbage from a student dormitory changed slightly during a week due to the change of the menu, however, they remained almost unchanged during the entire experimental period. The experimental results showed high biodegradability of the garbage, and demonstrated its suitability for methane production. The soluble nitrogen removal was high: over 97%. No excess sludge was wasted from the system. A high treatment efficiency of simultaneous organic carbon and nitrogen was obtained. The possibility of complete treatment of garbage with this process has been positively demonstrated by this study.

  12. Method for Finding Metabolic Properties Based on the General Growth Law. Liver Examples. A General Framework for Biological Modeling

    PubMed Central

    Shestopaloff, Yuri K.

    2014-01-01

    We propose a method for finding metabolic parameters of cells, organs and whole organisms, which is based on the earlier discovered general growth law. Based on the obtained results and analysis of available biological models, we propose a general framework for modeling biological phenomena and discuss how it can be used in Virtual Liver Network project. The foundational idea of the study is that growth of cells, organs, systems and whole organisms, besides biomolecular machinery, is influenced by biophysical mechanisms acting at different scale levels. In particular, the general growth law uniquely defines distribution of nutritional resources between maintenance needs and biomass synthesis at each phase of growth and at each scale level. We exemplify the approach considering metabolic properties of growing human and dog livers and liver transplants. A procedure for verification of obtained results has been introduced too. We found that two examined dogs have high metabolic rates consuming about 0.62 and 1 gram of nutrients per cubic centimeter of liver per day, and verified this using the proposed verification procedure. We also evaluated consumption rate of nutrients in human livers, determining it to be about 0.088 gram of nutrients per cubic centimeter of liver per day for males, and about 0.098 for females. This noticeable difference can be explained by evolutionary development, which required females to have greater liver processing capacity to support pregnancy. We also found how much nutrients go to biomass synthesis and maintenance at each phase of liver and liver transplant growth. Obtained results demonstrate that the proposed approach can be used for finding metabolic characteristics of cells, organs, and whole organisms, which can further serve as important inputs and constraints for many applications in biology (such as protein expression), biotechnology (synthesis of substances), and medicine. PMID:24940740

  13. Merging Worlds of Nanomaterials and Biological Environment: Factors Governing Protein Corona Formation on Nanoparticles and Its Biological Consequences

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Foroozandeh, Parisa; Aziz, Azlan Abdul

    2015-05-01

    Protein corona has became a prevalent subject in the field of nanomedicine owing to its diverse role in determining the efficiency, efficacy, and the ultimate biological fate of the nanomaterials used as a tool to treat and diagnose various diseases. For instance, protein corona formation on the surface of nanoparticles can modify its physicochemical properties and interfere with its intended functionalities in the biological microenvironments. As such, much emphasis should be placed in understanding these complex phenomena that occur at the bio-nano interface. The main aim of this review is to present different factors that are influencing protein-nanoparticle interaction such as physicochemical properties of nanoparticle ( i.e., size and size distribution, shape, composition, surface chemistry, and coatings) and the effect of biological microenvironments. Apart from that, the effect of ignored factors at the bio-nano interface such as temperature, plasma concentration, plasma gradient effect, administration route, and cell observer were also addressed.

  14. Toward finding a universally applicable parameterization of the β factor for Relaxed Eddy Accumulation applications

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Vogl, Teresa; Hrdina, Amy; Thomas, Christoph

    2016-04-01

    The traditional eddy covariance (EC) technique requires the use of fast responding sensors (≥ 10 Hz) that do not exist for many chemical species found in the atmosphere. In this case, the Relaxed Eddy Accumulation (REA) method offers a means to calculate fluxes of trace gases and other scalar quantities (Businger and Oncley, 1990) and was originally derived from the eddy accumulation method (EA) first proposed by Desjardins (1972). While REA lessens the requirements for sensors and sampling and thus offers practical appeal, it introduces a dependence of the computed flux from a proportionality factor β. The accuracy of the REA fluxes hinges upon the correct determination of β, which was found to vary between 0.40 and 0.63 (Milne et al., 1999, Ammann and Meixner, 2002, Ruppert et al., 2006). However, formulating a universally valid parameterization for β instead of empirical evaluation has remained a conundrum and has been a main limitation for REA. In this study we take a fresh look at the dependencies and mathematical models of β by analyzing eddy covariance (EC) data and REA simulations for two field experiments in drastically contrasting environments: an exclusively physically driven environment in the Dry Valleys of Antarctica, and a biologically active system in a grassland in Germany. The main objective is to work toward a model parameterization for β that can be applied over wide range of surface conditions and forcings without the need for empirical evaluation, which is not possible for most REA applications. Our study discusses two different models to define β: (i) based upon scalar-scalar similarity, in which a different scalar is measured with fast-response sensors as a proxy for the scalar of interest, here referred to as β0; and (ii) computed solely from the vertical wind statistics, assuming a linear relationship between the scalar of interest and the vertical wind speed, referred to as βw. Results are presented for the carbon

  15. Occupational risk factors and pancreatic cancer: a review of recent findings.

    PubMed

    Andreotti, Gabriella; Silverman, Debra T

    2012-01-01

    Several occupational exposures have been linked to excess risk of pancreatic cancer; however, most associations are not well established. The objective of this review article is to report on the more recently published studies (1998-2010), and provide a summary of the most consistently reported occupational risk factors for pancreatic cancer, including exposure to chlorinated hydrocarbon compounds, pesticides, polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs), metals, nitrosamines, radiation, various airborne particles, and employment in sedentary occupations. We conclude that the strongest and most consistent findings linking occupational exposures with pancreatic cancer risk to date are for chlorinated hydrocarbons and PAHs.

  16. Human telomere biology: A contributory and interactive factor in aging, disease risks, and protection.

    PubMed

    Blackburn, Elizabeth H; Epel, Elissa S; Lin, Jue

    2015-12-04

    Telomeres are the protective end-complexes at the termini of eukaryotic chromosomes. Telomere attrition can lead to potentially maladaptive cellular changes, block cell division, and interfere with tissue replenishment. Recent advances in the understanding of human disease processes have clarified the roles of telomere biology, especially in diseases of human aging and in some aging-related processes. Greater overall telomere attrition predicts mortality and aging-related diseases in inherited telomere syndrome patients, and also in general human cohorts. However, genetically caused variations in telomere maintenance either raise or lower risks and progression of cancers, in a highly cancer type-specific fashion. Telomere maintenance is determined by genetic factors and is also cumulatively shaped by nongenetic influences throughout human life; both can interact. These and other recent findings highlight both causal and potentiating roles for telomere attrition in human diseases.

  17. Do Sophisticated Epistemic Beliefs Predict Meaningful Learning? Findings from a Structural Equation Model of Undergraduate Biology Learning

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Lee, Silvia Wen-Yu; Liang, Jyh-Chong; Tsai, Chin-Chung

    2016-01-01

    This study investigated the relationships among college students' epistemic beliefs in biology (EBB), conceptions of learning biology (COLB), and strategies of learning biology (SLB). EBB includes four dimensions, namely "multiple-source," "uncertainty," "development," and "justification." COLB is further…

  18. Anatomic findings in revision endoscopic sinus surgery: Case series and review of contributory factors

    PubMed Central

    Bewick, Jessica; Egro, Francesco M.; Masterson, Liam; Javer, Amin R.

    2016-01-01

    Background: It is recognized that patients who undergo endoscopic sinus surgery (ESS) do not always achieve control of their disease. The causes are multifactorial; variations in surgical practice have been identified as possible factors in refractory disease. Objective: To reflect on the frequent anatomic findings of patients with chronic rhinosinusitis (CRS) who require revision ESS. Methods: A retrospective review of patients who required revision ESS at a tertiary institution over a 3-year period. Patients for whom maximal medical therapy failed for CRS underwent computed tomography of the paranasal sinuses and image-guided surgery. Surgical records of anatomic findings were reviewed and analyzed. Results: Over 3 years, a total of 75 patients underwent revision procedures, 28% of all ESS performed in the unit. The most frequent finding was a residual uncinate process in 64% of the patients (n = 48); other findings included a maxillary antrostomy not based on the natural ostium of the maxillary sinus in 47% (n = 35), an oversized antrostomy in 29% (n = 22), resected middle turbinates in 35% (n = 26), middle meatal stenosis in 15% (n = 11), synechiae in 29% (n = 22), and osteitic bone that required drilling in 13% (n = 10). Conclusion: Surgical technique can give rise to anatomic variations that may prevent adequate mucociliary clearance and medication delivery, which leads to failure in ESS in patients with CRS. This study demonstrated the surgical findings encountered in revision ESS that should be highlighted in the training of Ear, Nose and Throat surgeons to help prevent primary failure and reduce health care costs. PMID:28107148

  19. Factors associated with Taiwanese lesbians' breast health-care behavior and intentions: Qualitative interview findings.

    PubMed

    Wang, Ya-Ching; Griffiths, Jane; Grande, Gunn

    2016-08-11

    This article presents the qualitative findings of a mixed-methods study that explored factors influencing lesbians' breast health-care behavior and intentions. A total of 37 semi-structured face-to-face interviews were conducted among women who self-identified as lesbians or women who partnered with the same gender who were aged 20 years or above in four areas of Taiwan (North, Central, South, and East Taiwan) between August 2012 and October 2012. Interviews were audio recorded with participants' consent. The interviews were analyzed using constant comparative analysis with Nvivo audio-coding support. Four themes were identified to be strongly associated with the lesbians' breast health-care behavior and their intentions, namely, gender identity, gender role expression, partners' support, and concerns about health-care providers' reactions. Important barriers to the women's breast health-care behavior and intentions were masculine identity ("T-identity" in Taiwan), masculine appearance, concerns about health-care providers' lack of knowledge of multiple gender diversity, and their attitudes toward lesbians. Conversely, their partners' support was a factor facilitating the women's breast health-care behavior and intentions, particularly for the T-identity lesbians. These findings suggest the significance of and need for culturally competent care and are important for improving Taiwanese lesbians' breast health.

  20. Ecological, Social and Biological Risk Factors for Continued Trypanosoma cruzi Transmission by Triatoma dimidiata in Guatemala

    PubMed Central

    Bustamante, Dulce M.; De Urioste-Stone, Sandra M.; Juárez, José G.; Pennington, Pamela M.

    2014-01-01

    Background Chagas disease transmission by Triatoma dimidiata persists in Guatemala and elsewhere in Central America under undefined ecological, biological and social (eco-bio-social) conditions. Methodology Eco-bio-social risk factors associated with persistent domiciliary infestation were identified by a cross-sectional survey and qualitative participatory methods. Quantitative and qualitative data were generated regarding Trypanosoma cruzi reservoirs and triatomine hosts. Blood meal analysis and infection of insects, dogs and rodents were determined. Based on these data, multimodel inference was used to identify risk factors for domestic infestation with the greatest relative importance (>0.75). Principal Findings Blood meal analysis showed that 64% of 36 bugs fed on chickens, 50% on humans, 17% on dogs; 24% of 34 bugs fed on Rattus rattus and 21% on Mus musculus. Seroprevalence among 80 dogs was 37%. Eight (17%) of 46 M. musculus and three (43%) of seven R. rattus from households with infected triatomines were infected with T. cruzi Distinct Typing Unit I. Results from interviews and participatory meetings indicated that vector control personnel and some householders perceived chickens roosting and laying eggs in the house as bug infestation risk factors. House construction practices were seen as a risk factor for bug and rodent infestation, with rodents being perceived as a pest by study participants. Multimodel inference showed that house infestation risk factors of high relative importance are dog density, mouse presence, interior wall plaster condition, dirt floor, tile roofing and coffee tree presence. Conclusions/Significance Persistent house infestation is closely related to eco-bio-social factors that maintain productive T. dimidiata habitats associated with dogs, chickens and rodents. Triatomine, dog and rodent infections indicate active T. cruzi transmission. Integrated vector control methods should include actions that consider the role of

  1. Factors influencing biological treatment of MTBE contaminated ground water

    SciTech Connect

    Stringfellow, William T.; Hines Jr., Robert D.; Cockrum, Dirk K.; Kilkenny, Scott T.

    2001-09-14

    Methyl tert-butyl ether (MTBE) contamination has complicated the remediation of gasoline contaminated sites. Many sites are using biological processes for ground water treatment and would like to apply the same technology to MTBE. However, the efficiency and reliability of MTBE biological treatment is not well documented. The objective of this study was to examine the operational and environmental variables influencing MTBE biotreatment. A fluidized bed reactor was installed at a fuel transfer station and used to treat ground water contaminated with MTBE and gasoline hydrocarbons. A complete set of chemical and operational data was collected during this study and a statistical approach was used to determine what variables were influencing MTBE treatment efficiency. It was found that MTBE treatment was more sensitive to up-set than gasoline hydrocarbon treatment. Events, such as excess iron accumulation, inhibited MTBE treatment, but not hydrocarbon treatment. Multiple regression analysis identified biomass accumulation and temperature as the most important variables controlling the efficiency of MTBE treatment. The influent concentration and loading of hydrocarbons, but not MTBE, also impacted MTBE treatment efficiency. The results of this study suggest guidelines for improving MTBE treatment. Long cell retention times in the reactor are necessary for maintaining MTBE treatment. The onset of nitrification only occurs when long cell retention times have been reached and can be used as an indicator in fixed film reactors that conditions favorable to MTBE treatment exist. Conversely, if the reactor can not nitrify, it is unlikely to have stable MTBE treatment.

  2. Identification of biological and environmental risk factors for language delay: The Let's Talk STEPS study.

    PubMed

    Korpilahti, Pirjo; Kaljonen, Anne; Jansson-Verkasalo, Eira

    2016-02-01

    The aim of this population-based study was to identify demographic factors for language delays at an early age. The risk analysis covered 11 biological and 8 environmental factors. The mothers' concerns regarding language development were also examined. A total of 226 children from a Finnish cohort study were invited to participate in language assessments at 36 months. The test results for word finding and language comprehension were compared with parental questionnaires about children's vocabulary at 13 and 24 months. Regression analysis revealed that the father's social class (t=-2.79, p=0.006) and working full time (t=-2.86, p=0.005) significantly predicted children's language delay. In addition, language comprehension was significantly predicted by the mother's social class (t=-2.06, p=0.041) and by gender, with an advantage to girls (t=-2.71, p=0.008). Vocabulary at 24 months was a powerful predictor for lexical development (t=4.58, p<0.0001) and language comprehension (t=4.85, p<0.0001) at 36 months. Mothers' concerns were correlated with children's limited lexicons as early as 24 months (r=0.31, p<0.0001) and poor language comprehension (r=-0.35, p<0.0001) at 36 months. Mothers were especially concerned if the parents needed special education during school years. At the population-level, gender was the most powerful biological factor in predicting language delays. Similarly, both parents' social status had predictive value for the child's language development. In addition, it was found that the mother's concern about her child's slow language acquisition should be taken into account when making decisions regarding special support.

  3. Biological and behavioral factors modify biomarkers of arsenic exposure in a U.S. population.

    PubMed

    Calderon, Rebecca L; Hudgens, Edward E; Carty, Cara; He, Bin; Le, X Chris; Rogers, John; Thomas, David J

    2013-10-01

    Although consumption of drinking water contaminated with inorganic arsenic is usually considered the primary exposure route, aggregate exposure to arsenic depends on direct consumption of water, use of water in food preparation, and the presence in arsenicals in foods. To gain insight into the effects of biological and behavioral factors on arsenic exposure, we determined arsenic concentrations in urine and toenails in a U.S. population that uses public or private water supplies containing inorganic arsenic. Study participants were 904 adult residents of Churchill County, Nevada, whose home tap water supplies contained <3 to about 1200 µg of arsenic per liter. Biomarkers of exposure for this study were summed urinary concentrations of inorganic arsenic and its methylated metabolites (speciated arsenical), of all urinary arsenicals (total arsenical), and of all toenail arsenicals (total arsenical). Increased tap water arsenic concentration and consumption were associated with significant upward trends for urinary speciated and total and toenail total arsenical concentrations. Significant gender differences in concentrations of speciated and total arsenicals in urine and toenails reflected male-female difference in water intake. Both recent and higher habitual seafood consumption significantly increased urinary total but not speciated arsenical concentration. In a stepwise general linear model, seafood consumption significantly predicted urinary total arsenical but not urinary speciated or toenail total arsenical concentrations. Smoking behavior significantly predicted urinary speciated or total arsenical concentration. Gender, tap water arsenic concentration, and primary drinking water source significantly predicted urinary speciated and total concentrations and toenail total arsenical concentrations. These findings confirm the primacy of home tap water as a determinant of arsenic concentration in urine and toenails. However, biological and behavioral factors can

  4. Factors moderating children's adjustment to parental separation: findings from a community study in England.

    PubMed

    Cheng, Helen; Dunn, Judy; O'connor, Thomas G; Golding, Jean

    2006-04-01

    Research findings show that there is marked variability in children's response to parental separation, but few studies identify the sources of this variation. This prospective longitudinal study examines the factors modifying children's adjustment to parental separation in a community sample of 5,635 families in England. Children's behavioral/emotional problems were assessed when children were aged 47 and 81 months; marital quality, maternal depression, socioeconomic circumstances, and demographic variables were assessed prior to the separation from maternal report. Results indicated that 346 mothers separated from their partners in the 3-year period. Preseparation differences were found for measures of family process and parent risk factors, with effect sizes ranging from small to trivial. Parental separation was associated with a significant but modest increase in behavioral/emotional problems, independent of marital quality, maternal depression, socioeconomic circumstances, and demographic variables. Moderation analyses showed that children of cohabiting parents had a greater increase in adjustment problems following parental separation than children of married parents. Further research elucidating the factors that moderate children's adjustment to parental separation is needed to improve our understanding of who may most likely benefit from preventive interventions.

  5. Neurotrophic factors and CNS disorders: findings in rodent models of depression and schizophrenia.

    PubMed

    Angelucci, Francesco; Mathé, Aleksander A; Aloe, Luigi

    2004-01-01

    Nerve growth factor (NGF) and brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) are proteins involved in neuronal survival and plasticity of dopaminergic, cholinergic and serotonergic neurons in the central nervous system (CNS). Loss of neurons in specific brain regions has been found in depression and schizophrenia, and this chapter summarizes the findings of altered neurotrophins in animal models of those two disorders under baseline condition and following antidepressive and antipsychotic treatments. In a model of depression (Flinders sensitive line/Flinders resistant line; FSL/FRL rats), increased NGF and BDNF concentrations were found in frontal cortex of female, and in occipital cortex of male 'depressed' FSL compared to FRL control rats. Using the same model, the effects of electroconvulsive stimuli (ECS) and chronic lithium treatment on brain NGF, BDNF and glial cell line-derived neurotrophic factors were investigated. ECS and lithium altered the brain concentrations of neurotrophic factors in the hippocampus, frontal cortex, occipital cortex and striatum. ECS mimic the effects of electroconvulsive therapy (ECT) that is an effective treatment for depression and also schizophrenia. Since NGF and BDNF may also be changed in the CNS of animal models of schizophrenia, we investigated whether treatment with antipsychotic drugs (haloperidol, risperidone, and olanzapine) affects the constitutive levels of NGF and BDNF in the CNS. Both typical and atypical antipsychotic drugs altered the regional brain levels of NGF and BDNF. Other studies also demonstrated that these drugs differentially altered neurotrophin mRNAs. Overall, these studies indicate that alteration of brain level of NGF and BDNF could constitute part of the biochemical alterations induced by antipsychotic drugs.

  6. New insights into the biology of tissue factor pathway inhibitor

    PubMed Central

    MARONEY, S. A.; MAST, A. E.

    2015-01-01

    Summary Tissue factor pathway inhibitor (TFPI) dampens the initiation of blood coagulation by inhibiting two potent procoagulant complexes, tissue factor–factor VIIa (TF–FVIIa) and early forms of prothrombinase. TFPI isoforms, TFPIα and TFPIβ, result from alternative splicing of mRNA, producing distinct C-terminal ends of the two proteins. Both isoforms inhibit TF–FVIIa, but only TFPIα can inhibit early forms of prothrombinase by binding of its positively charged C-terminus with high affinity to the acidic B-domain exosite of FVa, which is generated upon activation by FXa. TFPIα and TFPIβ are produced in cultured human endothelial cells, while platelets contain only TFPIα. Knowledge of the anticoagulant mechanisms and tissue expression patterns of TFPIα and TFPIβ have improved our understanding of the phenotypes observed in different mouse models of TFPI deficiency, the east Texas bleeding disorder, and the development of pharmaceutical agents that block TFPI function to treat hemophilia. PMID:26149025

  7. How motif environment influences transcription factor search dynamics: Finding a needle in a haystack

    PubMed Central

    Dror, Iris; Rohs, Remo

    2016-01-01

    Transcription factors (TFs) have to find their binding sites, which are distributed throughout the genome. Facilitated diffusion is currently the most widely accepted model for this search process. Based on this model the TF alternates between one‐dimensional sliding along the DNA, and three‐dimensional bulk diffusion. In this view, the non‐specific associations between the proteins and the DNA play a major role in the search dynamics. However, little is known about how the DNA properties around the motif contribute to the search. Accumulating evidence showing that TF binding sites are embedded within a unique environment, specific to each TF, leads to the hypothesis that the search process is facilitated by favorable DNA features that help to improve the search efficiency. Here, we review the field and present the hypothesis that TF‐DNA recognition is dictated not only by the motif, but is also influenced by the environment in which the motif resides. PMID:27192961

  8. Molecular and cellular biology of von Willebrand factor.

    PubMed

    Denis, Cécile V

    2002-01-01

    von Willebrand factor (VWF) is a plasma protein that performs 2 main functions in hemostasis: it mediates platelet adhesion to the injured vessel wall, and it carries and protects coagulation factor VIII. VWF is synthesized through a multistep process in endothelial cells and megakaryocytes as a very large polymer composed of identical disulfide-linked 250-kd subunits. In endothelial cells, VWF not only directs the formation of its own storage granules, the Weibel-Palade bodies, but it also acts as a chaperone molecule to direct other proteins, such as P-selectin, into these granules. Upon stimulation of the endothelium, the Weibel-Palade bodies will be translocated to the plasma membrane, and their contents will be secreted into the plasma milieu. The expression of VWF can be regulated at different levels by a number of genetic and environmental factors, resulting in control of its activity. New roles for VWF, especially in inflammatory processes, have recently been suggested, indicating that some aspects of this well-studied protein remain to be investigated.

  9. Learner, Text, and Context Factors on Conceptual Change in Biology

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Trevors, Gregory

    This thesis investigated how instructional environments might be optimally designed for all students to restructure prior knowledge and learn counter-intuitive science concepts, referred to as conceptual change. Three independent variables were examined in relation to real-time cognitive processes and subsequent learning outcomes: a learner characteristic (students' beliefs about knowledge and knowing, or epistemic beliefs), a property of instructional texts (refutational text structures), and a variable of instructional contexts (reading goals). Fifty-one university students with misconceptions in biological evolution were classified as espousing either absolutistic or evaluativist epistemic beliefs. Participants were randomly assigned to receive a refutational or expository texts and a global comprehension or elaborative interrogation reading goal in a 2x2 nested design. Data on think aloud responses while reading and open-ended essays post-reading were collected. Results reveal that refutations enriched conceptual evolutionary knowledge but failed to foster restructuring of misconceptions. Epistemic beliefs were related to cognitive processing, with evaluativists adapting their processes according to instructional texts. Reading goals likewise enriched conceptual knowledge and did not revise misconceptions, but no interaction between assigned goals and epistemic beliefs was observed. Theoretical and practical implications are discussed.

  10. Men's attitudes toward breastfeeding: findings from the 2007 Texas Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System.

    PubMed

    Vaaler, Margaret L; Castrucci, Brian C; Parks, Sharyn E; Clark, Jamie; Stagg, Julie; Erickson, Tracy

    2011-02-01

    Past research on breastfeeding demonstrates that male partners' support is a significant factor in mothers' decisions to breastfeed. This study explored the diversity of men's opinions about breastfeeding, for the purpose of increasing breastfeeding support among men. This study used the Texas sample of the 2007 Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System (BRFSS) to examine whether men's attitudes toward breastfeeding varied by their demographic characteristics and whether fathers' breastfeeding attitudes were related to couples' choice of infant feeding method. Descriptive statistics and linear regression estimated the influence of each demographic characteristic on breastfeeding attitudes. Among a subsample of fathers, multinomial logistic regression analyzed the influence of men's breastfeeding attitudes on their choice of infant feeding method. Findings showed that Spanish-speaking Hispanic men were most likely to agree that breastfeeding had social limitations (e.g. interfere with social life) for mothers, yet they viewed public images of breastfeeding as more acceptable compared with other men. In comparison to U.S.-born men, foreign-born men were in greater agreement that employers should accommodate breastfeeding. Among fathers, support of public images of breastfeeding and attitudes toward employers' accommodations were positively associated with the choice to use breast milk. Men's ethnicity, country of origin, education level, and socioeconomic status all contribute to different norms and expectations about breastfeeding. Men's attitudes about public images of breastfeeding and employers' accommodations for breastfeeding mothers influence the choice of breast milk as the sole infant-feeding method.

  11. Peripheral blood metabolic and inflammatory factors as biomarkers to ocular findings in diabetic macular edema

    PubMed Central

    Sala-Puigdollers, Anna; Matas, Jessica; Vinagre, Irene; Ríos, José; Adán, Alfredo

    2017-01-01

    Aims To study the association between peripheral blood metabolic and inflammatory factors and presence of diabetic macular edema (DME) and its related anatomic features in type 2 diabetic mellitus (T2DM) patients. Material and methods Observational cross-sectional study on a proof of concept basis. Seventy-six T2DM included patients were divided based on the presence (n = 58) or absence of DME (n = 18) according to optical coherence tomography (OCT). Ultra-widefield fluorescein angiography (UWFA) was performed in DME patients. Fasting peripheral blood sample testing included glycemia, glycated hemoglobin, creatinin and lipid levels among others. Serum levels of a broad panel of cytokines and inflammatory mediators were also analysed. OCT findings included central subfoveal thickness, diffuse retinal thickness (DRT), cystoid macular edema (CME), serous retinal detachment and epirretinal membrane. UWFA items included pattern of DME, presence of peripheral retinal ischemia and enlarged foveal avascular zone (FAZ). Results Metabolic and inflammatory factors did not statistically differ between groups. However, several inflammatory mediators did associate to certain ocular items of DME cases: IL-6 was significantly higher in patients with DRT (p = 0.044), IL-10 was decreased in patients with CME (p = 0.012), and higher IL-8 (p = 0.031) and VEGF levels (p = 0.031) were observed in patients with enlarged FAZ. Conclusion Inflammatory and metabolic peripheral blood factors in T2DM may not be differentially associated to DME when compared to non-DME cases. However, some OCT and UWFA features of DME such as DRT, CME and enlarged FAZ may be associated to certain systemic inflammatory mediators. PMID:28328965

  12. 50 CFR 23.63 - What factors are considered in making a finding that an animal is bred in captivity?

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2010 CFR

    2010-10-01

    ... finding that an animal is bred in captivity? 23.63 Section 23.63 Wildlife and Fisheries UNITED STATES FISH... Findings § 23.63 What factors are considered in making a finding that an animal is bred in captivity? (a... means an ensemble of captive wildlife used for reproduction. (c) Bred-in-captivity criteria. For...

  13. 76 FR 42675 - Availability of an Environmental Assessment and Finding of No Significant Impact for a Biological...

    Federal Register 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014

    2011-07-19

    ... Significant Impact for a Biological Control Agent for Hemlock Woolly Adelgid AGENCY: Animal and Plant Health... biological control agent to reduce the severity of hemlock woolly adelgid (Adelges tsugae, HWA) infestations... release of this biological control agent into the continental United States. \\1\\ To view the notice,...

  14. Students' application of a biological concept: Factors affecting consistency

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Palmer, David

    1996-12-01

    This study investigated factors affecting students' ability to apply consistently the concept of adaptations (i.e., characteristics which suit an organism to its environment). Individual interviews were carried out with 74 Year 10 students, of whom only 47% showed an understanding of the concept. These students were asked to indicate on a list of living and non-living items which ones whould have adaptations. It was found that they were more likely to apply the concept to vertebrates than to other types of living things. In addition, many students appeared to be unable to separate consistently the idea of “adaptations as characteristics” from the other everyday and scientific meanings of the terms “adapt” and “adaptation”.

  15. Synthesis and Biological Evaluation of Manassantin Analogues for Hypoxia-Inducible Factor 1α Inhibition.

    PubMed

    Kwon, Do-Yeon; Lee, Hye Eun; Weitzel, Douglas H; Park, Kyunghye; Lee, Sun Hee; Lee, Chen-Ting; Stephenson, Tesia N; Park, Hyeri; Fitzgerald, Michael C; Chi, Jen-Tsan; Mook, Robert A; Dewhirst, Mark W; Lee, You Mie; Hong, Jiyong

    2015-10-08

    To cope with hypoxia, tumor cells have developed a number of adaptive mechanisms mediated by hypoxia-inducible factor 1 (HIF-1) to promote angiogenesis and cell survival. Due to significant roles of HIF-1 in the initiation, progression, metastasis, and resistance to treatment of most solid tumors, a considerable amount of effort has been made to identify HIF-1 inhibitors for treatment of cancer. Isolated from Saururus cernuus, manassantins A (1) and B (2) are potent inhibitors of HIF-1 activity. To define the structural requirements of manassantins for HIF-1 inhibition, we prepared and evaluated a series of manassantin analogues. Our SAR studies examined key regions of manassantin's structure in order to understand the impact of these regions on biological activity and to define modifications that can lead to improved performance and drug-like properties. Our efforts identified several manassantin analogues with reduced structural complexity as potential lead compounds for further development. Analogues MA04, MA07, and MA11 down-regulated hypoxia-induced expression of the HIF-1α protein and reduced the levels of HIF-1 target genes, including cyclin-dependent kinase 6 (Cdk6) and vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF). These findings provide an important framework to design potent and selective HIF-1α inhibitors, which is necessary to aid translation of manassantin-derived natural products to the clinic as novel therapeutics for cancers.

  16. Synthesis and Biological Evaluation of Manassantin Analogues for Hypoxia-Inducible Factor 1α Inhibition

    PubMed Central

    2015-01-01

    To cope with hypoxia, tumor cells have developed a number of adaptive mechanisms mediated by hypoxia-inducible factor 1 (HIF-1) to promote angiogenesis and cell survival. Due to significant roles of HIF-1 in the initiation, progression, metastasis, and resistance to treatment of most solid tumors, a considerable amount of effort has been made to identify HIF-1 inhibitors for treatment of cancer. Isolated from Saururus cernuus, manassantins A (1) and B (2) are potent inhibitors of HIF-1 activity. To define the structural requirements of manassantins for HIF-1 inhibition, we prepared and evaluated a series of manassantin analogues. Our SAR studies examined key regions of manassantin’s structure in order to understand the impact of these regions on biological activity and to define modifications that can lead to improved performance and drug-like properties. Our efforts identified several manassantin analogues with reduced structural complexity as potential lead compounds for further development. Analogues MA04, MA07, and MA11 down-regulated hypoxia-induced expression of the HIF-1α protein and reduced the levels of HIF-1 target genes, including cyclin-dependent kinase 6 (Cdk6) and vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF). These findings provide an important framework to design potent and selective HIF-1α inhibitors, which is necessary to aid translation of manassantin-derived natural products to the clinic as novel therapeutics for cancers. PMID:26394152

  17. Making the Grade in Undergraduate Biology Courses: Factors that Distinguish High and Low Achievers.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Nist, Sherrie L.; And Others

    The factors that influence the performance of undergraduate students in introductory biology courses were studied, considering cognitive, metacognitive, and behavioral factors. From 612 participants volunteering, 52 consistent high performers and 57 consistent low performers were selected. Information was collected on their study habits,…

  18. Biological factors contributing to bark and ambrosia beetle species diversification.

    PubMed

    Gohli, Jostein; Kirkendall, Lawrence R; Smith, Sarah M; Cognato, Anthony I; Hulcr, Jiri; Jordal, Bjarte H

    2017-03-03

    The study of species diversification can identify the processes that shape patterns of species richness across the tree of life. Here we perform comparative analyses of species diversification using a large dataset of bark beetles. Three examined covariates - permanent inbreeding (sibling mating), fungus farming, and major host type - represent a range of factors that may be important for speciation. We studied the association of these covariates with species diversification while controlling for evolutionary lag on adaptation. All three covariates were significantly associated with diversification, but fungus farming showed conflicting patterns between different analyses. Genera that exhibited interspecific variation in host type had higher rates of species diversification, which may suggest that host switching is a driver of species diversification or that certain host types or forest compositions facilitate colonization and thus allopatric speciation. Because permanent inbreeding is thought to facilitate dispersal, the positive association of permanent inbreeding on diversification rates suggests that dispersal ability may contribute to species richness. Bark beetles are ecologically unique; however, our results indicate that their impressive species diversity is largely driven by mechanisms shown to be important for many organism groups. This article is protected by copyright. All rights reserved.

  19. Biochemical and biological properties of the nerve growth factor receptor

    SciTech Connect

    Taniuchi, M.

    1988-01-01

    We have utilized a monoclonal antibody (192-IgG) to study the rat nerve growth factor receptor. After intraocular injection, {sup 125}I-192-IgG was retrogradely transported in sympathetic neuronal axons to the superior cervical ganglion. When the sciatic nerve was ligated to induce the accumulation of axonally transported materials, 192-IgG immunostaining was observed on both sides of the ligature, indicating that NGF receptors are transported in both orthograde and retrograde directions. By using {sup 125}I-NGF crosslinking and 192-IgG immunoprecipitation, we detected receptor molecules throughout the rat brain, thereby supporting the hypothesis that NGF is active in the central nervous system. We also discovered that sciatic nerve transection leads to a dramatic increase in the amount of NGF receptor found in the distal portion of the nerve. Immunostaining revealed that all Schwann cells in the distal axotomized nerve were expressing NGF receptors. We examined phosphorylation of NGF receptor in cultured sympathetic neurons and PC12 cells. We also examined pharmacological effects of 192-IgG. Systemic injection of 192-IgG into neonatal rats caused a permanent partial sympathectomy in a dose-dependent manner; a maximum of 50% of the cells were killed.

  20. Biological, Psychological, and Sociocultural Factors Contributing to the Drive for Muscularity in Weight-Training Men.

    PubMed

    Schneider, Catharina; Rollitz, Laura; Voracek, Martin; Hennig-Fast, Kristina

    2016-01-01

    The drive for muscularity and associated behaviors (e.g., exercising and dieting) are of growing importance for men in Western societies. In its extreme form, it can lead to body image concerns and harmful behaviors like over-exercising and the misuse of performance-enhancing substances. Therefore, investigating factors associated with the drive for muscularity, especially in vulnerable populations like bodybuilders and weight trainers can help identify potential risk and protective factors for body image problems. Using a biopsychosocial framework, the aim of the current study was to explore different factors associated with drive for muscularity in weight-training men. To this purpose, German-speaking male weight trainers (N = 248) completed an online survey to determine the extent to which biological, psychological, and sociocultural factors contribute to drive for muscularity and its related attitudes and behaviors. Using multiple regression models, findings showed that media ideal body internalization was the strongest positive predictor for drive for muscularity, while age (M = 25.9, SD = 7.4) held the strongest negative association with drive for muscularity. Dissatisfaction with muscularity, but not with body fat, was related to drive for muscularity. The fat-free mass index, a quantification of the actual degree of muscularity of a person, significantly predicted drive for muscularity-related behavior but not attitudes. Body-related aspects of self-esteem, but not global self-esteem, were significant negative predictors of drive for muscularity. Since internalization of media body ideals presented the highest predictive value for drive for muscularity, these findings suggest that media body ideal internalizations may be a risk factor for body image concerns in men, leading, in its most extreme form to disordered eating or muscle dysmorphia. Future research should investigate the relations between drive for muscularity, age, body composition

  1. Biological, Psychological, and Sociocultural Factors Contributing to the Drive for Muscularity in Weight-Training Men

    PubMed Central

    Schneider, Catharina; Rollitz, Laura; Voracek, Martin; Hennig-Fast, Kristina

    2016-01-01

    The drive for muscularity and associated behaviors (e.g., exercising and dieting) are of growing importance for men in Western societies. In its extreme form, it can lead to body image concerns and harmful behaviors like over-exercising and the misuse of performance-enhancing substances. Therefore, investigating factors associated with the drive for muscularity, especially in vulnerable populations like bodybuilders and weight trainers can help identify potential risk and protective factors for body image problems. Using a biopsychosocial framework, the aim of the current study was to explore different factors associated with drive for muscularity in weight-training men. To this purpose, German-speaking male weight trainers (N = 248) completed an online survey to determine the extent to which biological, psychological, and sociocultural factors contribute to drive for muscularity and its related attitudes and behaviors. Using multiple regression models, findings showed that media ideal body internalization was the strongest positive predictor for drive for muscularity, while age (M = 25.9, SD = 7.4) held the strongest negative association with drive for muscularity. Dissatisfaction with muscularity, but not with body fat, was related to drive for muscularity. The fat-free mass index, a quantification of the actual degree of muscularity of a person, significantly predicted drive for muscularity-related behavior but not attitudes. Body-related aspects of self-esteem, but not global self-esteem, were significant negative predictors of drive for muscularity. Since internalization of media body ideals presented the highest predictive value for drive for muscularity, these findings suggest that media body ideal internalizations may be a risk factor for body image concerns in men, leading, in its most extreme form to disordered eating or muscle dysmorphia. Future research should investigate the relations between drive for muscularity, age, body composition

  2. Factors associated with small-scale agricultural machinery adoption in Bangladesh: Census findings.

    PubMed

    Mottaleb, Khondoker Abdul; Krupnik, Timothy J; Erenstein, Olaf

    2016-08-01

    There is strong advocacy for agricultural machinery appropriate for smallholder farmers in South Asia. Such 'scale-appropriate' machinery can increase returns to land and labour, although the still substantial capital investment required can preclude smallholder ownership. Increasing machinery demand has resulted in relatively well-developed markets for rental services for tillage, irrigation, and post-harvest operations. Many smallholders thereby access agricultural machinery that may have otherwise been cost prohibitive to purchase through fee-for-service arrangements, though opportunity for expansion remains. To more effectively facilitate the development and investment in scale-appropriate machinery, there is a need to better understand the factors associated with agricultural machinery purchases and service provision. This paper first reviews Bangladesh's historical policy environment that facilitated the development of agricultural machinery markets. It then uses recent Bangladesh census data from 814,058 farm households to identify variables associated with the adoption of the most common smallholder agricultural machinery - irrigation pumps, threshers, and power tillers (mainly driven by two-wheel tractors). Multinomial probit model results indicate that machinery ownership is positively associated with household assets, credit availability, electrification, and road density. These findings suggest that donors and policy makers should focus not only on short-term projects to boost machinery adoption. Rather, sustained emphasis on improving physical and civil infrastructure and services, as well as assuring credit availability, is also necessary to create an enabling environment in which the adoption of scale-appropriate farm machinery is most likely.

  3. Diurnal rhythmicity in biological processes involved in bioavailability of functional food factors.

    PubMed

    Tsurusaki, Takashi; Sakakibara, Hiroyuki; Aoshima, Yoshiki; Yamazaki, Shunsuke; Sakono, Masanobu; Shimoi, Kayoko

    2013-05-01

    In the past few decades, many types of functional factors have been identified in dietary foods; for example, flavonoids are major groups widely distributed in the plant kingdom. However, the absorption rates of the functional food factors are usually low, and many of these are difficult to be absorbed in the intact forms because of metabolization by biological processes during absorption. To gain adequate beneficial effects, it is therefore mandatory to know whether functional food factors are absorbed in sufficient quantity, and then reach target organs while maintaining beneficial effects. These are the reasons why the bioavailability of functional food factors has been well investigated using rodent models. Recently, many of the biological processes have been reported to follow diurnal rhythms recurring every 24 h. Therefore, absorption and metabolism of functional food factors influenced by the biological processes may vary with time of day. Consequently, the evaluation of the bioavailability of functional food factors using rodent models should take into consideration the timing of consumption. In this review, we provide a perspective overview of the diurnal rhythm of biological processes involved in the bioavailability of functional food factors, particularly flavonoids.

  4. Impact of different economic factors on biological invasions on the global scale.

    PubMed

    Lin, Wen; Cheng, Xinyue; Xu, Rumei

    2011-04-13

    Social-economic factors are considered as the key to understand processes contributing to biological invasions. However, there has been few quantified, statistical evidence on the relationship between economic development and biological invasion on a worldwide scale. Herein, using principal factor analysis, we investigated the relationship between biological invasion and economic development together with biodiversity for 91 economies throughout the world. Our result indicates that the prevalence of invasive species in the economies can be well predicted by economic factors (R(2) = 0.733). The impact of economic factors on the occurrence of invasive species for low, lower-middle, upper-middle and high income economies are 0%, 34.3%, 46.3% and 80.8% respectively. Greenhouse gas emissions (CO(2), Nitrous oxide, Methane and Other greenhouse gases) and also biodiversity have positive relationships with the global occurrence of invasive species in the economies on the global scale. The major social-economic factors that are correlated to biological invasions are different for various economies, and therefore the strategies for biological invasion prevention and control should be different.

  5. On finding and using identifiable parameter combinations in nonlinear dynamic systems biology models and COMBOS: a novel web implementation.

    PubMed

    Meshkat, Nicolette; Kuo, Christine Er-zhen; DiStefano, Joseph

    2014-01-01

    Parameter identifiability problems can plague biomodelers when they reach the quantification stage of development, even for relatively simple models. Structural identifiability (SI) is the primary question, usually understood as knowing which of P unknown biomodel parameters p1,…, pi,…, pP are-and which are not-quantifiable in principle from particular input-output (I-O) biodata. It is not widely appreciated that the same database also can provide quantitative information about the structurally unidentifiable (not quantifiable) subset, in the form of explicit algebraic relationships among unidentifiable pi. Importantly, this is a first step toward finding what else is needed to quantify particular unidentifiable parameters of interest from new I-O experiments. We further develop, implement and exemplify novel algorithms that address and solve the SI problem for a practical class of ordinary differential equation (ODE) systems biology models, as a user-friendly and universally-accessible web application (app)-COMBOS. Users provide the structural ODE and output measurement models in one of two standard forms to a remote server via their web browser. COMBOS provides a list of uniquely and non-uniquely SI model parameters, and-importantly-the combinations of parameters not individually SI. If non-uniquely SI, it also provides the maximum number of different solutions, with important practical implications. The behind-the-scenes symbolic differential algebra algorithms are based on computing Gröbner bases of model attributes established after some algebraic transformations, using the computer-algebra system Maxima. COMBOS was developed for facile instructional and research use as well as modeling. We use it in the classroom to illustrate SI analysis; and have simplified complex models of tumor suppressor p53 and hormone regulation, based on explicit computation of parameter combinations. It's illustrated and validated here for models of moderate complexity, with

  6. Challenges in Implementing Technology-Rich Curricular High School Biology Materials: First Year Findings from the "Exploring Life" Project.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Price, Betsy; Cates, Ward M.; Bodzin, Alex

    Eighteen high school biology teachers from a stratified sample of 13 distinct geographical United States regions participated in evaluation of the first year prototypes of Exploring Life, a biology program that includes a textbook with an accompanying Internet component and wet-lab investigations. Web activities explain and reinforce the text and…

  7. Analysis of environmental factors determining development and succession in biological soil crusts.

    PubMed

    Lan, Shubin; Wu, Li; Zhang, Delu; Hu, Chunxiang

    2015-12-15

    Biological soil crusts play important ecological functions in arid and semi-arid regions, while different crust successional patterns appeared in different regions. Therefore in this study, the environmental conditions between Shapotou (with cyanobacterial, lichen and moss crusts) and Dalate Banner (with only cyanobacterial and moss crusts) regions of China were compared to investigate why lichen crusts only appeared in Shapotou; at the same time, artificial moss inoculation was conducted to find out the environmental factors promoting crust succession to moss stage. The results showed lichen crusts always developed from cyanobacterial crusts, which provide not only the stable soil surface, but also the biomass basis for lichen formation; furthermore, addition of crust physicochemical characteristics (primarily silt content) play a facilitating effect on lichen emergence (R(2)=0.53). The inoculation experiment demonstrated early crust soil surface and enough water holding content (>4%) provided the essential guarantee for moss germination. Our results show that there is heterogeneity in crust succession in different regions, which may be mainly affected by the ambient soil microenvironments. It is concluded that a positive feedback mechanism is expected between crust succession and ambient soil microenvironments; while a negative feedback mechanism forms between crust succession and free living cyanobacteria and algae.

  8. An analysis of the structure of the compound biological effectiveness factor

    PubMed Central

    Ono, Koji

    2016-01-01

    This report is an analysis of the structure of the compound biological effectiveness (CBE) factor. The value of the CBE factor previously reported was revalued for the central nervous system, skin and lung. To describe the structure, the following terms are introduced: the vascular CBE (v-CBE), intraluminal CBE (il-CBE), extraluminal CBE (el-CBE) and non-vascular CBE (nv-CBE) factors and the geometric biological factor (GBF), i.e. the contributions that are derived from the total dose to the vasculature, each dose to vasculature from the intraluminal side and the extraluminal side, the dose to the non-vascular tissue and the factor to calculate el-CBE from il-CBE, respectively. The el-CBE factor element was also introduced to relate il-CBE to el-CBE factors. A CBE factor of 0.36 for disodium mercaptoundecahydrododecaborate (BSH) for the CNS was independent of the 10B level in the blood; however, that for p-Boron-L-phenylalanine (BPA) increased with the 10B level ratio of the normal tissue to the blood (N/B). The CBE factor was expressed as follows: factor = 0.32 + N/B × 1.65. The factor of 0.32 at 0 of N/B was close to the CBE factor for BSH. GBFs had similar values, between BSH and BPA, 1.39 and 1.52, respectively. The structure of the CBE factor for BPA to the lung was also elucidated based on this idea. The factor is described as follows: CBE factor = 0.32 + N/B × 1.80. By this elucidation of the structure of the CBE factor, it is expected that basic and clinical research into boron neutron capture therapy will progress. PMID:27021218

  9. 50 CFR 23.61 - What factors are considered in making a non-detriment finding?

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2011 CFR

    2011-10-01

    ..., EXPORTATION, AND IMPORTATION OF WILDLIFE AND PLANTS (CONTINUED) CONVENTION ON INTERNATIONAL TRADE IN... sustainable use. (2) The removal of the animal or plant from the wild is part of a biologically based... sustainable-use management plan has been established, the removal of the animal or plant from the wild...

  10. 50 CFR 23.61 - What factors are considered in making a non-detriment finding?

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2012 CFR

    2012-10-01

    ... sustainable use. (2) The removal of the animal or plant from the wild is part of a biologically based... sustainable-use management plan has been established, the removal of the animal or plant from the wild would...: From wild-collected to born or propagated in a controlled environment to bred in captivity...

  11. 50 CFR 23.61 - What factors are considered in making a non-detriment finding?

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2014 CFR

    2014-10-01

    ... sustainable use. (2) The removal of the animal or plant from the wild is part of a biologically based... sustainable-use management plan has been established, the removal of the animal or plant from the wild would...: From wild-collected to born or propagated in a controlled environment to bred in captivity...

  12. 50 CFR 23.61 - What factors are considered in making a non-detriment finding?

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2013 CFR

    2013-10-01

    ... sustainable use. (2) The removal of the animal or plant from the wild is part of a biologically based... sustainable-use management plan has been established, the removal of the animal or plant from the wild would...: From wild-collected to born or propagated in a controlled environment to bred in captivity...

  13. 78 FR 14509 - Availability of an Environmental Assessment and Finding of No Significant Impact for a Biological...

    Federal Register 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014

    2013-03-06

    ...), where it causes needle loss, abortion of buds, and the eventual death of infested trees. On August 3... biological control agent into the eastern United States. \\1\\ To view the notice, EA, and FONSI go to...

  14. Cocaine Use among the College Age Group: Biological and Psychological Effects--Clinical and Laboratory Research Findings.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Nicholi, Armand M., Jr.

    1984-01-01

    Knowledge about cocaine's effect on the human mind and body is limited and not clearly documented. This article discusses various biological and psychological effects of the drug based on clinical and laboratory studies of man. (Author/DF)

  15. PTSD in Court II: Risk factors, endophenotypes, and biological underpinnings in PTSD.

    PubMed

    Young, Gerald

    The second article in the series of three for the journal on "PTSD in Court" especially concerns the biological bases that have been found to be associated with PTSD (posttraumatic stress disorder). The cohering concepts in this section relate to risk factors; candidate genes; polygenetics; "gene×environment" interactions; epigenetics; endophenotypes; biomarkers; and connective networks both structurally and functionally (in terms of intrinsic connectivity networks, ICNs, including the DMN, SN, and CEN; that is, default mode, salience, and central executive networks, respectively). Risk factors related to PTSD include pre-event, event- and post-event ones. Some of the genes related to PTSD include: FKBP5, 5-HTTLPR, and COMT (which are, respectively, FK506-binding protein 5 gene, serotonin-transporter linked polymorphic region, catechol-O-methyl-transferase). These genetic findings give an estimate of 30% for the genetic influence on PTSD. The typical brain regions involved in PTSD include the amygdala, hippocampus, and prefrontal cortex, along with the insula. Causal models of behavior are multifactorial and biopsychosocial, and these types of models apply to PTSD, as well. The paper presents a multilevel systems model of psychopathology, including PTSD, which involves three levels - a top-down psychological construct one, a bottom-up symptom connection one, and a middle one involving symptom appraisal. Legally, causality refers to the event at issue needing to meet the bar of being materially contributory to the outcome. Finally, this section of the article reviews empirically-supported therapies for PTSD and the dangers of not receiving treatment for it.

  16. Factors associated with the prescription of "traditional" or "biological" systemic treatment in psoriasis.

    PubMed

    Tabolli, Stefano; Paradisi, Andrea; Giannantoni, Patrizia; Gubinelli, Emanuela; Abeni, Damiano

    2015-02-01

    Abstract The choice of an adequate psoriasis treatment is critical to good disease management and to overall patient health. It is estimated that about 20-30% of patients requires systemic treatment: "traditional" (methotrexate, acitretina and cyclosporin) or "biological" (etanercept, adalimumab and infliximab). Clinical records of 784 outpatients with psoriasis were analyzed. 51.5% received traditional treatments and 48.5% a biological treatment. Males were 67.8% of patients. Psoriatic arthritis was observed in 37.3%. Females and younger patients were more likely to receive biological treatments. No differences were observed for Body Mass Index or for presence of comorbidities. Patients with psoriatic arthritis were also more frequently prescribed biological drug treatment. In a multivariate logistic regression model, only the older age-group (≥60 years) had a statistically significant OR (p=0.001) with a reduction of about 80% the likelihood of receiving biological treatment compared to the younger age-group (<40 years). Patients with a PASI score ≥20 and patients with arthritis have a probability to be prescribed biologics about five times higher than the other patients. In conclusion, younger age, psoriatic arthritis and the previous use of systemic drugs are factors associated with the use of biological treatment rather than the traditional systemic drugs.

  17. Biophysical and biological factors determining the ability to achieve long-term cryobiological preservation

    SciTech Connect

    Mazur, P.

    1997-12-01

    The BESTCapsule will maintain appropriate biological specimens for decades or centuries at cryogenic temperatures in the living state. Maintenance at temperatures below {approximately} {minus}140 C is not a problem. No ordinary chemical reactions in aqueous solutions can occur. The only source of damage will be the slow accumulation of physical damage to DNA from background ionizing radiation. But this source of damage should not become serious in less than a millennium. Rather, the main problem in cryopreservation is to devise procedures for cooling the biological specimens to {minus}196 C and returning them to normal temperatures without inflicting lethal injury. Regardless of the cell type, there are certain encompassing biophysical factors and constraints that determine whether they will survive or die during freezing and thawing. Superimposed on these may be special biological factors that apply to specific cell types. This paper will emphasize the former and give illustrative examples of the latter.

  18. Biological and Sociocultural Factors during the School Years Predicting Women's Lifetime Educational Attainment

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Hendrick, C. Emily; Cohen, Alison K.; Deardorff, Julianna; Cance, Jessica D.

    2016-01-01

    Background: Lifetime educational attainment is an important predictor of health and well-being for women in the United States. In this study, we examine the roles of sociocultural factors in youth and an understudied biological life event, pubertal timing, in predicting women's lifetime educational attainment. Methods: Using data from the National…

  19. Factor structure of the Psychopathic Personality Inventory (PPI): findings from a large incarcerated sample.

    PubMed

    Neumann, Craig S; Malterer, Melanie B; Newman, Joseph P

    2008-06-01

    Exploratory factor analysis (EFA) of the Psychopathic Personality Inventory (PPI; S. O. Lilienfeld, 1990; S. O. Lilienfeld & B. P. Andrews, 1996) with a community sample has suggested that the PPI subscales may comprise 2 higher order factors (S. D. Benning, C. J. Patrick, B. M. Hicks, D. M. Blonigen, & R. F. Krueger, 2003). However, substantive and structural evidence raises concerns about the viability of this 2-factor model, particularly in offender populations. The authors attempted to replicate the S. D. Benning et al. 2-factor solution using a large (N = 1,224) incarcerated male sample. Confirmatory factor analysis of this model resulted in poor model fit. Similarly, using the same EFA procedures as did S. D. Benning et al., the authors found little evidence for a 2-factor model. When they followed the recommendations of J.-W. van Prooijen and W. A. van der Kloot (2001) for recovering EFA solutions, model fit results provided some evidence that a 3-factor EFA solution could be recovered via confirmatory factor analysis.

  20. Factor Structure of the Psychopathic Personality Inventory (PPI): Findings from a Large Incarcerated Sample

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Neumann, Craig S.; Malterer, Melanie B.; Newman, Joseph P.

    2008-01-01

    Exploratory factor analysis (EFA) of the Psychopathic Personality Inventory (PPI; S. O. Lilienfeld, 1990; S. O. Lilienfeld & B. P. Andrews, 1996) with a community sample has suggested that the PPI subscales may comprise 2 higher order factors (S. D. Benning, C. J. Patrick, B. M. Hicks, D. M. Blonigen, & R. F. Krueger, 2003). However,…

  1. Biologically active molecules regulating the IgE antibody system: biochemical and biological comparisons of suppressive factor of allergy (SFA) and enhancing factor of allergy (EFA).

    PubMed

    Katz, D H; Chen, S S; Liu, F T; Bogowitz, C A; Katz, L R

    1984-01-01

    Studies in recent years directed at unraveling the complex regulatory mechanisms controlling IgE antibody production have demonstrated the existence of soluble factors that exert selective regulatory effects on the IgE antibody system. In addition, the demonstration of IgE-specific Fc receptors (FcR epsilon) on B and T lymphocytes, especially after exposure to high concentrations of IgE either in vivo or in vitro, has provided increasingly strong indications of an important role for such cells in the overall control of the IgE system. In our own laboratory, we have been studying soluble regulatory factors known as suppressive factor of allergy (SFA) and enhancing factor of allergy (EFA), which were initially identified by their selective, and opposing, regulatory effects on in vivo IgE responses in inbred mice. More recently, in an in vitro system in which it is possible to induce the de novo expression of FcR epsilon on lymphocytes cultured in the presence of monoclonal IgE, we reported that concomitant exposure of such cultured cells to SFA selectively blocked the induction of FcR epsilon expression. In the present study, we have extended these investigations by making a direct comparison between certain biological properties and biochemical characteristics of SFA and EFA. We found that SFA and EFA can be distinguished biochemically on the basis of size, SFA falling in the range of 30,000 daltons or so, and EFA falling in the range of 15,000 daltons. In examining their biological properties, we unexpectedly found that although SFA-enriched and EFA-enriched fractions exert dramatically distinct biological effects on in vivo IgE antibody synthesis (as implied by their names), the two respective active fractions are totally indistinguishable in their inhibitory effects on IgE-mediated induction of FcR epsilon + lymphocytes in vitro when intact spleen cell populations are exposed to monoclonal IgE. That the active entities in SFA and EFA responsible for inhibition of

  2. Time of farmers' exposure to biological factors in agricultural working environment.

    PubMed

    Mołocznik, Anna

    2004-01-01

    Working time in conditions of exposure to hazardous factors is an important element indispensable for the evaluation of human exposure in the working environment. Agricultural work is accompanied by co-occurrence of many risk factors threatening farmers' health, e.g. dust, elements of the thermal environment, noise, vibration, chemical and biological agents. Biological factors cause diseases with contagious, allergic or immuno-toxic backgrounds which constitute the majority of farmers' occupational diseases registered in Poland. Exposure to hazardous factors in agricultural working environment is due to contact with plants, animals and organic wastes, more precisely--with microbes, plant and animal particles present in aerogenic agricultural dust, as well as pathogens of contagious and invasive diseases present in contaminated soil, water and plants. Data concerning the duration of farmers' exposure to biological and other factors of the working environment were obtained with the use of the Private Farmer Work Chart. Time-schedule observations concerned an annual work cycle. The study covered 30 farms with the following production profiles: plant (Group A), animal (Group B) and mixed production (Group C). The total working time was: in Group A - from 106-163 % of the legal working time; in Group B - from 75-147 %; in Group C - from 136-167 %. Among 48 work activities contributing to the full working cycle among the farmers examined, 15 activities were accompanied by 5 factors. These were mainly field activities which covered plant harvesting and fertilizing, chemical plant protection, as well as cultivation activities. Agricultural dust and elements of the thermal environment were the environmental factors most frequently accompanying agricultural work, followed by contact with biological factors, noise, vibration, and chemical agents. Biological factors are a specific element associated with 19 work activities, mainly the spreading of manure, animal breeding and

  3. In-Class Use of Laptop Computers to Enhance Engagement within an Undergraduate Biology Curriculum: Findings and Lessons Learned

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Poling, Kirsten; Smit, Julie; Higgs, Dennis

    2013-01-01

    Laptop computers were provided for use in three biology classes with differing formats (a second year lecture course of 100 students, a third/fourth year lecture course of 50 students, and a second year course with greater than 250 students, in groups of 25 during the laboratory portion of the class) to assess their impact on student learning and…

  4. Exploring the Factors Related to Acceptance of Evolutionary Theory among Turkish Preservice Biology Teachers: Toward a More Informative Conceptual Ecology for Biological Evolution

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Deniz, Hasan; Donnelly, Lisa A.; Yilmaz, Irfan

    2008-01-01

    In this study, using multiple regression analysis, we aimed to explore the factors related to acceptance of evolutionary theory among preservice Turkish biology teachers using conceptual ecology for biological evolution as a theoretical lens. We aimed to determine the extent to which we can account for the variance in acceptance of evolutionary…

  5. Determinants of male health: the interaction of biological and social factors

    PubMed Central

    de Kretser, David M.

    2010-01-01

    This review discusses the social and biological factors that may influence male development from conception to adulthood and also underlie the development of health disorders. It will provide assistance to those who may be considering the formulation of a male health policy. It aims to emphasize that social determinants function on a biological background that is profoundly influenced by a male's genome, inherited from his parents. The importance of the male-specific reproductive disorders is emphasized, but these also affect somatic structures through the secretion of androgens secreted from the testes. In turn, the function of the cardiovascular and nervous systems can significantly influence reproductive processes such as erectile dysfunction. PMID:20364153

  6. Biological and socio-cultural factors during the school years predicting women’s lifetime educational attainment

    PubMed Central

    Hendrick, C. Emily; Cohen, Alison K.; Deardorff, Julianna

    2015-01-01

    BACKGROUND Lifetime educational attainment is an important predictor of health and well-being for women in the United States. In the current study, we examine the roles of socio-cultural factors in youth and an understudied biological life event, pubertal timing, in predicting women’s lifetime educational attainment. METHODS Using data from the National Longitudinal Survey of Youth 1997 cohort (N = 3889), we conducted sequential multivariate linear regression analyses to investigate the influences of macro-level and family-level socio-cultural contextual factors in youth (region of country, urbanicity, race/ethnicity, year of birth, household composition, mother’s education, mother’s age at first birth) and early menarche, a marker of early pubertal development, on women’s educational attainment after age 24. RESULTS Pubertal timing and all socio-cultural factors in youth, other than year of birth, predicted women’s lifetime educational attainment in bivariate models. Family factors had the strongest associations. When family factors were added to multivariate models, geographic region in youth and pubertal timing were no longer significant. CONCLUSION Our findings provide additional evidence that family factors should be considered when developing comprehensive and inclusive interventions in childhood and adolescence to promote lifetime educational attainment among girls. PMID:26830508

  7. The importance of biological factors affecting trace metal concentration as revealed from accumulation patterns in co-occurring terrestrial invertebrates.

    PubMed

    Hendrickx, Frederik; Maelfait, Jean-Pierre; Bogaert, Nicolas; Tojal, Catarina; Du Laing, Gijs; Tack, Filip M G; Verloo, Marc G

    2004-01-01

    As physicochemical properties of the soil highly influence the bioavailable fraction of a particular trace metal, measured metal body burdens in a particular species are often assumed to be more reliable estimators of the contamination of the biota. To test this we compared the Cd, Cu and Zn content of three spiders (generalist predators) and two amphipods (detritivores), co-occurring in seven tidal marshes along the river Schelde, between each other and with the total metal concentrations and the concentrations of four sequential extractions of the soils. Correlations were significant in only one case and significant site x species interactions for all metals demonstrate that factors affecting metal concentration were species and site specific and not solely determined by site specific characteristics. These results emphasize that site and species specific biological factors might be of the utmost importance in determining the contamination of the biota, at least for higher trophic levels. A hypothetical example clarifies these findings.

  8. Factors Affecting Children's Judgement of Culturally Deviant Acts: Findings from an International School in Japan

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Kutsuki, Aya; Tanaka, Yumi

    2016-01-01

    This study explored the relationship between perceptions of culturally deviant acts and multicultural experiences of elementary-school children attending an international school in Japan. Findings indicated that children judged a Japanese harsher than a foreigner, irrespective of the children's age. It was also found that younger children were…

  9. Applying Effective Instruction Research Findings in Teacher Education: Six Influencing Factors.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Gee, Elsie W.

    This preliminary report provides an overview of the Applying Research to Teacher Education (ARTE) Research Utilization in Elementary Teacher Education (RUETE) study which began in 1982 and will continue through 1985. ARTE: RUETE explores specific processes for incorporating recent research findings of effective instruction into preservice…

  10. Teacher Related Factors Influencing Students' Enrollment in Biology Subject in Public Secondary Schools in Meru Central Sub County in Kenya

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Kirima, Teresia Mugure; Kinyua, Susan Muthoni

    2016-01-01

    This study examined teacher related factors influencing students' enrollment in Biology subject in public secondary schools in Meru Central Sub County in Kenya. The study utilized the descriptive survey research design on a target population of 9,859 respondents consisting of 9,748 Biology students, 62 trained Biology teachers and 49 Heads of…

  11. Psychologic and Biologic Factors Associated with Fatigue in Patients with Persistent Radiculopathy

    PubMed Central

    Starkweather, Angela

    2013-01-01

    Fatigue is a common symptom associated with neuropathic pain (NP) and can have negative consequences on psychosocial functioning, physical endurance, and quality of life. Recent evidence indicates that immune activation modulated through the increased release of proinflammatory cytokines can predict fatigue in some patient populations. Although earlier studies have shown that immune activation is a pathophysiologic feature of NP, there have been no studies to examine the relationship between immune activation and fatigue in persons with NP. Therefore, the purpose of this exploratory study was to: 1) determine the relationships among fatigue, pain, psychosocial factors, and selected biologic markers of immune activation (interleukin [IL] 6 and soluble IL-6 receptor [sIL-6R]) in participants with persistent radiculopathy; and 2) determine the differences in these variables based on fatigue severity. Participants (n = 80) were classified according to their level of fatigue as low (27.5%), moderate (32.5%), or high (40%), and significant differences were found between fatigue categories (p =.001). Multivariate analyses of variance revealed that individuals with moderate to high levels of fatigue differed from those with the lowest levels of fatigue in psychologic distress, depressive symptoms, IL-6, and sIL-6R, whereas the differences between moderate and high levels of fatigue were significant for psychologic distress and sIL-6R only. The findings suggest that immune activation affects fatigue severity and possibly other behavioral responses, offering important information when providing care to patients with persistent radiculopathy. The integration of biobehavioral nursing interventions in pain management may have a greater impact on quality of life than treatment focused only on pain. PMID:23452526

  12. Finding of Correction Factor and Dimensional Error in Bio-AM Model by FDM Technique

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Manmadhachary, Aiamunoori; Ravi Kumar, Yennam; Krishnanand, Lanka

    2016-06-01

    Additive Manufacturing (AM) is the swift manufacturing process, in which input data can be provided from various sources like 3-Dimensional (3D) Computer Aided Design (CAD), Computed Tomography (CT), Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI) and 3D scanner data. From the CT/MRI data can be manufacture Biomedical Additive Manufacturing (Bio-AM) models. The Bio-AM model gives a better lead on preplanning of oral and maxillofacial surgery. However manufacturing of the accurate Bio-AM model is one of the unsolved problems. The current paper demonstrates error between the Standard Triangle Language (STL) model to Bio-AM model of dry mandible and found correction factor in Bio-AM model with Fused Deposition Modelling (FDM) technique. In the present work dry mandible CT images are acquired by CT scanner and supplied into a 3D CAD model in the form of STL model. Further the data is sent to FDM machine for fabrication of Bio-AM model. The difference between Bio-AM to STL model dimensions is considered as dimensional error and the ratio of STL to Bio-AM model dimensions considered as a correction factor. This correction factor helps to fabricate the AM model with accurate dimensions of the patient anatomy. These true dimensional Bio-AM models increasing the safety and accuracy in pre-planning of oral and maxillofacial surgery. The correction factor for Dimension SST 768 FDM AM machine is 1.003 and dimensional error is limited to 0.3 %.

  13. Perceptions of Factors Influencing Healthful Food Consumption Behavior in the Lower Mississippi Delta: Focus Group Findings

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    McGee, Bernestine B.; Richardson, Valerie; Johnson, Glenda S.; Thornton, Alma; Johnson, Crystal; Yadrick, Kathleen; Ndirangu, Murugi; Goolsby, Susan; Watkins, Debra; Simpson, Pippa M.; Hyman, Edith; Stigger, Flavelia; Bogle, Margaret L.; Kramer, Tim R.; Strickland, Earline; McCabe-Sellers, Beverly

    2008-01-01

    Objective: To identify perceptions of Lower Mississippi Delta (LMD) residents regarding factors that influence a change in healthful food consumption behavior to assist in planning sustainable nutrition interventions in the LMD. Design: Nine focus groups were conducted with LMD residents in 9 counties in Arkansas, Louisiana, and Mississippi. One…

  14. Enhancing Coping and Supporting Protective Factors after a Disaster: Findings From a Quasi-Experimental Study

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Powell, Tara; Thompson, Sanna J.

    2016-01-01

    Objective: This article presents the Journey of Hope (JoH), a school-based intervention for children who have experienced a collective trauma such as a natural disaster. Through the use of group work, the JoH focuses on building coping skills and enhancing protective factors to help children recover. Method: This quasi-experimental research…

  15. Factors related to taste sensitivity in elderly: cross-sectional findings from SONIC study.

    PubMed

    Uota, M; Ogawa, T; Ikebe, K; Arai, Y; Kamide, K; Gondo, Y; Masui, Y; Ishizaki, T; Inomata, C; Takeshita, H; Mihara, Y; Maeda, Y

    2016-12-01

    The sense of taste is important, as it allows for assessment of nutritional value, as well as safety and quality of foods, with several factors suggested to be associated with taste sensitivity. However, comprehensive variables regarding taste and related factors have not been utilised in previous studies for assessments of sensitivity. In the present study, we performed cross-sectional analyses of taste sensitivity and related factors in geriatric individuals who participated in the SONIC Study. We analysed 2 groups divided by age, 69-71 years (young-old, n = 687) and 79-81 years (old-old, n = 621), and performed a general health assessment, an oral examination and determination of taste sensitivity. Contributing variables were selected by univariate analysis and then subjected to multivariate logistic regression analysis. In both groups, females showed significantly better sensitivity for bitter and sour tastes. Additionally, higher cognitive scores for subjects with a fine taste for salty were commonly seen in both groups, while smoking, drinking, hypertension, number of teeth, stimulated salivary flow salt intake and years of education were also shown to be associated with taste sensitivity. We found gender and cognitive status to be major factors affecting taste sensitivity in geriatric individuals.

  16. Gene-Environment Interplay in Internalizing Disorders: Consistent Findings across Six Environmental Risk Factors

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Hicks, Brian M.; Dirago, Ana C.; Iacono, William G.; McGue, Matt

    2009-01-01

    Background: Behavior genetic methods can help to elucidate gene-environment (G-E) interplay in the development of internalizing (INT) disorders (i.e., major depression and anxiety disorders). To date, however, no study has conducted a comprehensive analysis examining multiple environmental risk factors with the purpose of delineating general…

  17. Social Factors and Healthy Aging: Findings from the Louisiana Healthy Aging Study (LHAS)

    PubMed Central

    Cherry, Katie E.; Brown, Jennifer Silva; Kim, Sangkyu; Jazwinski, S. Michal

    2016-01-01

    Social behaviors are associated with health outcomes in later life. The authors examined relationships among social and physical activities and health in a lifespan sample of adults (N = 771) drawn from the Louisiana Healthy Aging Study (LHAS). Four age groups were compared: younger (21-44 years), middle-aged (45-64 years), older (65-84 years), and oldest-old adults (85 to 101 years). Linear regression analyses indicated that physical activity, hours spent outside of the house, and social support were significantly associated with self-reported health, after controlling for sociodemographic factors. Number of clubs was significantly associated with objective health status, after controlling for sociodemographic factors. These data indicate that social and physical activities remain an important determinant of self-perceived health into very late adulthood. Implications of these data for current views on successful aging are discussed. PMID:27034910

  18. Causal factors of corporate crime in Taiwan: qualitative and quantitative findings.

    PubMed

    Mon, Wei-Teh

    2002-04-01

    Street crimes are a primary concern of most criminologists in Taiwan. In recent years, however, crimes committed by corporations have increased greatly in this country. Employing the empirical approach to collect data about causal factors of corporate crime, the research presented in this article is the first systematic empirical study concerning corporate crime in Taiwan. The research sample was selected from a corporation with a criminal record of pollution caused by the release of toxic chemicals into the environment and a corporation with no criminal record. Questionnaire survey and interviews of corporate employees and managers were conducted, and secondary data were collected from official agencies. This research indicated the causal factors of corporate crime as follows: the failure of government regulation, lack of corporate self-regulation, lack of public concern about corporate crime, corporate mechanistic structure, and the low self-control tendency of corporate managers.

  19. Social Factors and Healthy Aging: Findings from the Louisiana Healthy Aging Study (LHAS).

    PubMed

    Cherry, Katie E; Brown, Jennifer Silva; Kim, Sangkyu; Jazwinski, S Michal

    2016-02-01

    Social behaviors are associated with health outcomes in later life. The authors examined relationships among social and physical activities and health in a lifespan sample of adults (N = 771) drawn from the Louisiana Healthy Aging Study (LHAS). Four age groups were compared: younger (21-44 years), middle-aged (45-64 years), older (65-84 years), and oldest-old adults (85 to 101 years). Linear regression analyses indicated that physical activity, hours spent outside of the house, and social support were significantly associated with self-reported health, after controlling for sociodemographic factors. Number of clubs was significantly associated with objective health status, after controlling for sociodemographic factors. These data indicate that social and physical activities remain an important determinant of self-perceived health into very late adulthood. Implications of these data for current views on successful aging are discussed.

  20. Interpersonal violence on college campuses: understanding risk factors and working to find solutions.

    PubMed

    Littleton, Heather

    2014-10-01

    This commentary discusses the contributions of Drs. Antonia Abbey and Catherine Kaukinen to our understanding of risk factors for sexual and physical aggression among college students. Major contributions of their work are outlined. These include Abbey's contributions to our understanding of trajectories of sexually aggressive behavior among college men, risk factors for engaging in sexual aggression among men, and the role of alcohol in sexual aggression. In addition, Kaukinen's work has increased our understanding of the frequency of violence in college dating relationships as well as the association of violent relationships with health risk behaviors. Directions for future research are also outlined including a need to identify trajectories of violence risk as well as a need to understand the complex interrelationships among health risk behaviors and interpersonal violence. Finally, implications for practice and university policy are discussed, including a focus on the development of effective preventive strategies and proactive responses to violence.

  1. Human Factors and ISS Medical Systems: Highlights of Procedures and Equipment Findings

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Byrne, V. E.; Hudy, C.; Smith, D.; Whitmore, M.

    2005-01-01

    As part of the Space Human Factors Engineering Critical Questions Roadmap, a three year Technology Development Project (TDP) was funded by NASA Headquarters to examine emergency medical procedures on ISS. The overall aim of the emergency medical procedures project was to determine the human factors issues in the procedures, training, communications and equipment, and to recommend solutions that will improve the survival rate of crewmembers in the event of a medical emergency. Currently, each ISS crew remains on orbit for six month intervals. As there is not standing requirement for a physician crewmember, during such time, the maintenance of crew health is dependant on individual crewmembers. Further, in the event of an emergency, crew will need to provide prolonged maintenance care, as well as emergency treatment, to an injured crewmember while awaiting transport to Earth. In addition to the isolation of the crew, medical procedures must be carried out within the further limitations imposed by the physical environment of the space station. For example, in order to administer care on ISS without the benefit of gravity, the Crew Medical Officers (CMOs) must restrain the equipment required to perform the task, restrain the injured crewmember, and finally, restrain themselves. Both the physical environment and the physical space available further limit the technology that can be used onboard. Equipment must be compact, yet able to withstand high levels of radiation and function without gravity. The focus here is to highlight the human factors impacts from our three year project involving the procedures and equipment areas that have been investigated and provided valuable to ISS and provide groundwork for human factors requirements for medical applications for exploration missions.

  2. Atherosclerosis risk factors in American Indians with Alzheimer disease: preliminary findings.

    PubMed

    Weiner, Myron F; Rosenberg, Roger N; Womack, Kyle B; Svetlik, Doris A; Fuller, Carey; Fields, Julie; Hynan, Linda S

    2008-01-01

    Factors predisposing to and associated with atherosclerosis may impact the onset and progression of Alzheimer disease (AD). The high prevalence of atherosclerosis and associated risk factors in American Indians makes them ideal subjects to test this association. We compared frequency of history of hypertension, myocardial infarction, stroke, diabetes, and high cholesterol in 34 American Indians with AD with 34 age-matched American Indian controls, and 34 age-matched whites with probable AD. We also measured waist size, height, and weight, and acquired blood for determination of plasma homocysteine and apolipoprotein E genotype. The 3 groups did not differ significantly in age or sex. History of hypertension and diabetes was significantly more common among American Indian AD patients than Indian controls or whites with AD. The 3 groups did not differ in history of stroke or myocardial infarction. Body mass index was significantly greater in both Indian groups than the white AD group. Plasma homocysteine levels were greater, but not significantly so, in the Indian AD than the Indian control group. Thus, there is preliminary evidence of a modest association between history of hypertension and diabetes and AD in a small sample of American Indians. This suggests that changes in lifestyle factors could influence the expression of AD in American Indians.

  3. Estimating Escherichia coli loads in streams based on various physical, chemical, and biological factors

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dwivedi, Dipankar; Mohanty, Binayak P.; Lesikar, Bruce J.

    2013-05-01

    Microbes have been identified as a major contaminant of water resources. Escherichia coli is a commonly used indicator organism. It is well recognized that the fate of E. coli in surface water systems is governed by multiple physical, chemical, and biological factors. The aim of this work is to provide insight into the physical, chemical, and biological factors along with their interactions that are critical in the estimation of E. coli loads in surface streams. There are various models to predict E. coli loads in streams, but they tend to be system- or site-specific or overly complex without enhancing our understanding of these factors. Hence, based on available data, a Bayesian neural network (BNN) is presented for estimating E. coli loads based on physical, chemical, and biological factors in streams. The BNN has the dual advantage of overcoming the absence of quality data (with regard to consistency in data) and determination of mechanistic model parameters by employing a probabilistic framework. This study evaluates whether the BNN model can be an effective alternative tool to mechanistic models for E. coli load estimation in streams. For this purpose, a comparison with a traditional model (load estimator (LOADEST), U.S. Geological Survey) is conducted. The models are compared for estimated E. coli loads based on available water quality data in Plum Creek, Texas. All the model efficiency measures suggest that overall E. coli load estimations by the BNN model are better than the E. coli load estimations by the LOADEST model on all the three occasions (threefold cross validation). Thirteen factors were used for estimating E. coli loads with the exhaustive feature selection technique, which indicated that 6 of 13 factors are important for estimating E. coli loads. Physical factors included temperature and dissolved oxygen; chemical factors include phosphate and ammonia; and biological factors include suspended solids and chlorophyll. The results highlight that

  4. Estimating Escherichia coli loads in streams based on various physical, chemical, and biological factors

    PubMed Central

    Dwivedi, Dipankar; Mohanty, Binayak P.; Lesikar, Bruce J.

    2013-01-01

    Microbes have been identified as a major contaminant of water resources. Escherichia coli (E. coli) is a commonly used indicator organism. It is well recognized that the fate of E. coli in surface water systems is governed by multiple physical, chemical, and biological factors. The aim of this work is to provide insight into the physical, chemical, and biological factors along with their interactions that are critical in the estimation of E. coli loads in surface streams. There are various models to predict E. coli loads in streams, but they tend to be system or site specific or overly complex without enhancing our understanding of these factors. Hence, based on available data, a Bayesian Neural Network (BNN) is presented for estimating E. coli loads based on physical, chemical, and biological factors in streams. The BNN has the dual advantage of overcoming the absence of quality data (with regards to consistency in data) and determination of mechanistic model parameters by employing a probabilistic framework. This study evaluates whether the BNN model can be an effective alternative tool to mechanistic models for E. coli loads estimation in streams. For this purpose, a comparison with a traditional model (LOADEST, USGS) is conducted. The models are compared for estimated E. coli loads based on available water quality data in Plum Creek, Texas. All the model efficiency measures suggest that overall E. coli loads estimations by the BNN model are better than the E. coli loads estimations by the LOADEST model on all the three occasions (three-fold cross validation). Thirteen factors were used for estimating E. coli loads with the exhaustive feature selection technique, which indicated that six of thirteen factors are important for estimating E. coli loads. Physical factors included temperature and dissolved oxygen; chemical factors include phosphate and ammonia; biological factors include suspended solids and chlorophyll. The results highlight that the LOADEST model

  5. Factors which influence Texas biology teachers' decisions to emphasize fundamental concepts of evolution

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bilica, Kimberly Lynn

    emphasis that Texas biology teachers currently as well as prefer to place on fundamental evolution concepts in relationship to specific belief factors which influence biology teachers' curricular decisions.

  6. Biochemistry and biology of the inducible multifunctional transcription factor TFII-I.

    PubMed

    Roy, A L

    2001-08-22

    An animal cell has the capability to respond to a variety of external signals through cell surface receptors. The response is usually manifested in terms of altered gene expression in the nucleus. Thus, in modern molecular and cell biology, it has become important to understand how the communication between extracellular signals and nuclear gene transcription is achieved. Originally discovered as a basal factor required for initiator-dependent transcription in vitro, recent evidence suggests that TFII-I is also an inducible multifunctional transcription factor that is activated in response to a variety of extracellular signals and translocates to the nucleus to turn on signal-induced genes. Here I review the biochemical and biological properties of TFII-I and related proteins in nuclear gene transcription, signal transduction and genetic disorders.

  7. Specific language disorders and season of birth: underlying environmental factors or chance findings?

    PubMed

    Ghezzo, Alessandro; Chiappedi, Matteo; Ballerini, Antonina; Seragni, Giorgio; Zanette, Michela; Conti, Chiara; Stefanini, Maria Chiara; Ferrari-Ginevra, Oreste; Spelta, Patrizia; Angelini, Lucia; Beghi, Ettore

    2012-01-01

    The medical records of 358 children and adolescents with specific language disorders (SLD; 122 girls and 236 boys) seen in rehabilitation centers from Northern and Central Italy were examined to compare season of birth in these cases to those of the Italian population. Exposure was calculated using univariate and multivariate odds ratios (ORs) and 95% confidence intervals (CIs). Compared to the Italian population, patients with SLD had a 1.67 (95% CI [1.35-2.07]) chance of birth in October-December. Independent predictors were younger age at inclusion and being firstborn. Different neurobiological hypotheses can be drawn to explain these findings.

  8. Growth factors and myometrium: biological effects in uterine fibroid and possible clinical implications

    PubMed Central

    Ciarmela, Pasquapina; Islam, Md. Soriful; Reis, Fernando M.; Gray, Peter C.; Bloise, Enrrico; Petraglia, Felice; Vale, Wylie; Castellucci, Mario

    2011-01-01

    BACKGROUND Growth factors are proteins secreted by a number of cell types that are capable of modulating cellular growth, proliferation and cellular differentiation. It is well accepted that uterine cellular events such as proliferation and differentiation are regulated by sex steroids and their actions in target tissues are mediated by local production of growth factors acting through paracrine and/or autocrine mechanisms. Myometrial mass is ultimately modified in pregnancy as well as in tumour conditions such as leiomyoma and leiomyosarcoma. Leiomyomas, also known as fibroids, are benign tumours of the uterus, considered to be one of the most frequent causes of infertility in reproductive years in women. METHODS For this review, we searched the database MEDLINE and Google Scholar for articles with content related to growth factors acting on myometrium; the findings are hereby reviewed and discussed. RESULTS Different growth factors such as epidermal growth factor (EGF), transforming growth factor-α (TGF-α), heparin-binding EGF (HB-EGF), acidic fibroblast growth factor (aFGF), basic fibroblast growth factor (bFGF), vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF), insulin-like growth factor (IGF), platelet-derived growth factor (PDGF) and TGF-β perform actions in myometrium and in leiomyomas. In addition to these growth factors, activin and myostatin have been recently identified in myometrium and leiomyoma. CONCLUSIONS Growth factors play an important role in the mechanisms involved in myometrial patho-physiology. PMID:21788281

  9. The contribution of occupational factors to social inequalities in health: findings from the national French SUMER survey.

    PubMed

    Niedhammer, Isabelle; Chastang, Jean-François; David, Simone; Kelleher, Cecily

    2008-12-01

    Social inequalities in health have long been demonstrated, but the understanding of these inequalities remains unclear. Work and its related occupational factors may contribute to these inequalities. The objective of this study was to study the contribution of work factors using an integrated approach (including all types of exposures) to social inequalities in three health outcomes: poor self-reported health, long sickness absence, and work injury. Respondents were 14,241 men and 10,245 women drawn from a survey of the national French working population (response rate: 96.5%). Work factors included job characteristics, and occupational exposures of the physical, ergonomic, biological, chemical, and psychosocial work environment. All work factors were measured through expert evaluation by occupational physicians, except psychosocial work factors, which were self-reported. Strong social gradients were found for all work factors, except for psychological demands, workplace bullying, and aggression from the public. Marked social gradients were also observed for the health outcomes studied, blue collar workers being more likely to report poor self-reported health, long sickness absence, and work injury. The social differences in health were reduced strongly after adjustment for work factors (psychological demands excluded) by 24-58% according to sex and health outcomes. The strongest impacts were found for decision latitude, ergonomic, physical, and chemical exposures, as well as for work schedules. A detailed analysis allowed us to identify more precisely the contributing occupational factors. It suggests that concerted prevention of occupational risk factors would be useful not only to improve health at work, but also to reduce social inequalities in health.

  10. On finding bicliques in bipartite graphs: a novel algorithm and its application to the integration of diverse biological data types

    PubMed Central

    2014-01-01

    Background Integrating and analyzing heterogeneous genome-scale data is a huge algorithmic challenge for modern systems biology. Bipartite graphs can be useful for representing relationships across pairs of disparate data types, with the interpretation of these relationships accomplished through an enumeration of maximal bicliques. Most previously-known techniques are generally ill-suited to this foundational task, because they are relatively inefficient and without effective scaling. In this paper, a powerful new algorithm is described that produces all maximal bicliques in a bipartite graph. Unlike most previous approaches, the new method neither places undue restrictions on its input nor inflates the problem size. Efficiency is achieved through an innovative exploitation of bipartite graph structure, and through computational reductions that rapidly eliminate non-maximal candidates from the search space. An iterative selection of vertices for consideration based on non-decreasing common neighborhood sizes boosts efficiency and leads to more balanced recursion trees. Results The new technique is implemented and compared to previously published approaches from graph theory and data mining. Formal time and space bounds are derived. Experiments are performed on both random graphs and graphs constructed from functional genomics data. It is shown that the new method substantially outperforms the best previous alternatives. Conclusions The new method is streamlined, efficient, and particularly well-suited to the study of huge and diverse biological data. A robust implementation has been incorporated into GeneWeaver, an online tool for integrating and analyzing functional genomics experiments, available at http://geneweaver.org. The enormous increase in scalability it provides empowers users to study complex and previously unassailable gene-set associations between genes and their biological functions in a hierarchical fashion and on a genome-wide scale. This practical

  11. Metadiscourse markers in biological research articles and journal impact factor: Non-native writers vs. native writers.

    PubMed

    Gholami, Javad; Ilghami, Roghayeh

    2016-07-08

    Metadiscourse markers (MDMs) are lexical resources that writers employ to organize their discourse and state their stance towards the content or the reader. This study investigated the frequency with which interactive and interactional MDMs were employed in biological research articles (RAs). It also explored the possible relationship between the frequency of these markers and Impact Factor (IF) of journals as an index of quality. Moreover, it aimed at finding out the difference(s) between two groups of authors (Iranian and American) in their use of these markers. Forty biological RAs published in years 2008-2011 written by Iranian non-native authors and published in four ISI journals with different IFs and 40 articles with the same characteristics published by American native authors were selected and examined for the use of the markers. The results showed that there was a strong positive correlation between the frequency of MDMs and IF of the journals. Regarding the frequency of MDMs, it was observed that Iranian authors employed interactive and interactional markers slightly more than their American counterparts. These results may provisionally confirm the considerable role of MDMs in enhancing the coherence and organization of articles for possible publication in high-impact journals. © 2016 by The International Union of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, 44(4):349-360, 2016.

  12. Risk factors for colorectal cancer in man induce aberrant crypt foci in rats: Preliminary findings

    PubMed Central

    Yang, Kai; Fard, Sara; Furrer, Rudolf; Archer, Michael C.; Bruce, W. Robert; Lip, HoYin; Mehta, Rhea; O'Brien, Peter J.; Giacca, Adria; Ward, Wendy E.; Femia, A. Pietro; Caderni, Giovanna; Medline, Alan; Banks, Kate

    2016-01-01

    ABSTRACT Epidemiological studies have demonstrated clear associations between specific dietary and environmental risk factors and incidence of colorectal cancer, but the mechanisms responsible for these associations are not known. An animal model could facilitate such an understanding. Both genotoxic and nongenotoxic carcinogens induce aberrant crypt foci (ACF) in the colons of F344 rats. F344 rats were provided with diets that contained putative risk factors for CRC: low calcium and low vitamin D, high iron, high fructose, and decreased light (UV) exposure or a control diet for 14 wk. The rats were then assessed with biochemical measures and by topological examination for evidence of colon abnormalities. Circulating ionized calcium was decreased from 2.85 to 1.69 mmol/L, and ACF were increased from 0.7 to 13.6 lesions/colon (both P < 0.001). Rats exposed to the multiple environmental conditions associated with colon cancer, developed ACF similar to the heterogeneous or ill-defined ACF in the human colon. Heterogeneous ACF are the most frequently seen in humans and are also seen in rats shortly after exposure to the non-genotoxic colon carcinogen, dextransulfate sodium. The rodent model could be used to assess the pathways from diet and environment to colon cancer and to provide guidance for clinical studies. PMID:26709971

  13. Toward a unified theory of childhood trauma and psychosis: A comprehensive review of epidemiological, clinical, neuropsychological and biological findings.

    PubMed

    Misiak, Błażej; Krefft, Maja; Bielawski, Tomasz; Moustafa, Ahmed A; Sąsiadek, Maria M; Frydecka, Dorota

    2017-02-16

    There is a growing body of research focused on the relationship between childhood trauma and the risk of developing psychosis. Numerous studies, including many large-scale population-based studies, controlling for possible mediating variables, provide persuasive evidence of a dose-response association and are indicative of a causal relationship. Existing evidence supports the specificity model, showing differential associations between particular adversities and clinical symptoms, with cumulative adversity causing less favorable clinical and functional outcomes in psychotic patients. To date, several psychological and biological models have been proposed to search for underlying developmental trajectories leading to the onset of psychosis, influencing psychopathological manifestation and negative functional outcomes due to a history of childhood trauma. In this article, we provide a unified review on the relationship between childhood trauma and psychosis by integrating results of epidemiological, clinical, neuropsychological and biological studies. The question whether psychosis with a positive history of childhood trauma should be considered as a new psychotic phenotype, requiring specific therapeutic interventions, warrants further investigation.

  14. The master role of microphthalmia-associated transcription factor in melanocyte and melanoma biology.

    PubMed

    Kawakami, Akinori; Fisher, David E

    2017-03-06

    Certain transcription factors have vital roles in lineage development, including specification of cell types and control of differentiation. Microphthalmia-associated transcription factor (MITF) is a key transcription factor for melanocyte development and differentiation. MITF regulates expression of numerous pigmentation genes to promote melanocyte differentiation, as well as fundamental genes for maintaining cell homeostasis, including genes encoding proteins involved in apoptosis (eg, BCL2) and the cell cycle (eg, CDK2). Loss-of-function mutations of MITF cause Waardenburg syndrome type IIA, whose phenotypes include depigmentation due to melanocyte loss, whereas amplification or specific mutation of MITF can be an oncogenic event that is seen in a subset of familial or sporadic melanomas. In this article, we review basic features of MITF biological function and highlight key unresolved questions regarding this remarkable transcription factor.Laboratory Investigation advance online publication, 6 March 2017; doi:10.1038/labinvest.2017.9.

  15. Multiple impacts of epilepsy and contributing factors: findings from an ethnographic study in Vietnam

    PubMed Central

    Aydemir, Nuran; Vu Trung, Dang; Snape, Dee; Baker, Gus A; Jacoby, Ann

    2009-01-01

    We investigated issues related to treatment, impact of epilepsy, attitudes toward epilepsy and disclosure in Vietnam by using in depth interviews with people with epilepsy (PWE) and their family members. We found that although participants prefer Western treatment methods more than traditional ones, they experience problems in accessing different kinds of anti-epileptic drugs (AEDs) and higher-level treatment facilities and with respect to treatment expenses. The impact of epilepsy can be observed in a wide range of daily living activities which include working, education, marriage prospects and family formation. Although both families and society at large do not hold negative attitudes toward epilepsy, most PWE reported a sense of burden to others. Both PWE and family members generally prefer disclosing epilepsy rather than concealing it from others. Our findings strongly suggest a need for different types of AEDs, and supporting information for PWE, family members and general public about epilepsy. PMID:19800851

  16. Finding imaging patterns of structural covariance via Non-Negative Matrix Factorization.

    PubMed

    Sotiras, Aristeidis; Resnick, Susan M; Davatzikos, Christos

    2015-03-01

    In this paper, we investigate the use of Non-Negative Matrix Factorization (NNMF) for the analysis of structural neuroimaging data. The goal is to identify the brain regions that co-vary across individuals in a consistent way, hence potentially being part of underlying brain networks or otherwise influenced by underlying common mechanisms such as genetics and pathologies. NNMF offers a directly data-driven way of extracting relatively localized co-varying structural regions, thereby transcending limitations of Principal Component Analysis (PCA), Independent Component Analysis (ICA) and other related methods that tend to produce dispersed components of positive and negative loadings. In particular, leveraging upon the well known ability of NNMF to produce parts-based representations of image data, we derive decompositions that partition the brain into regions that vary in consistent ways across individuals. Importantly, these decompositions achieve dimensionality reduction via highly interpretable ways and generalize well to new data as shown via split-sample experiments. We empirically validate NNMF in two data sets: i) a Diffusion Tensor (DT) mouse brain development study, and ii) a structural Magnetic Resonance (sMR) study of human brain aging. We demonstrate the ability of NNMF to produce sparse parts-based representations of the data at various resolutions. These representations seem to follow what we know about the underlying functional organization of the brain and also capture some pathological processes. Moreover, we show that these low dimensional representations favorably compare to descriptions obtained with more commonly used matrix factorization methods like PCA and ICA.

  17. Effects of lexical factors on lexical access among typical language-learning children and children with word-finding difficulties.

    PubMed

    Newman, Rochelle S; German, Diane J

    2002-09-01

    This investigation studied the influence of lexical factors, known to impact lexical access in adults, on the word retrieval of children. Participants included 320 typical and atypical (word-finding difficulties) language-learning children, ranging in age from 7 to 12 years. Lexical factors examined included word frequency, age-of-acquisition, neighborhood density, neighborhood frequency, and stress pattern. Findings indicated that these factors did influence lexical access in children. Words which were high in frequency and neighborhood frequency, low in neighborhood density and age-of-acquisition, and which contained the typical stress pattern for the language were easier to name. Further, the number of neighbors that were more frequent than the target word also had an effect on the word's ease of retrieval. Significant interactions indicated that age-of-acquisition effects decreased with maturation for typically-learning children whereas these effects continued to impact the lexical access of children with word-finding difficulties across the ages studied, suggesting that these children's difficulties in accessing words may have prevented them from developing strong access paths to these words. These findings support a view of lexical access in which access paths to words become strengthened with successful use.

  18. Factors that predict the use or non-use of virtual dissection by high school biology teachers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cockerham, William

    2001-07-01

    With the advent of computers into scholastic classrooms, virtual dissection has become a potential educational tool in high school biology lab settings. Utilizing non-experimental survey research methodology, this study attempted to identify factors that may influence high school biology teachers to use or not to use a virtual dissection. A 75-item research survey instrument consisting of both demographic background and Likert style questions was completed by 215 high school members of the National Association of Biology Teachers. The survey responses provided data to answer the research questions concerning the relationship between the likelihood of a high school biology teacher using a virtual dissection and a number of independent variables from the following three categories: (a) demographics, (b) attitude and experience, and (c) resources and support. These data also allowed for the determination of a demographic profile of the sample population. The demographic profile showed the sample population of high school biology teachers to be two-thirds female, mature, highly educated and very experienced. Analysis of variance and Pearson product moment correlational statistics were used to determine if there was a relationship between high school biology teachers' likelihood to use a virtual dissection and the independent variables. None of the demographic or resource and support independent variables demonstrated a strong relationship to the dependent variable of teachers' likelihood to use a virtual dissection. Three of the attitude and experience independent variables showed a statistically significant (p < .05) relationship to teachers' likelihood to use a virtual dissection: attitude toward virtual dissection, previous use of a virtual dissection and intention to use a real animal dissection. These findings may indicate that teachers are using virtual dissection as a supplement rather than a substitute. It appears that those concerned with promoting virtual

  19. Finding and defining the natural automata acting in living plants: Toward the synthetic biology for robotics and informatics in vivo

    PubMed Central

    Kawano, Tomonori; Bouteau, François; Mancuso, Stefano

    2012-01-01

    The automata theory is the mathematical study of abstract machines commonly studied in the theoretical computer science and highly interdisciplinary fields that combine the natural sciences and the theoretical computer science. In the present review article, as the chemical and biological basis for natural computing or informatics, some plants, plant cells or plant-derived molecules involved in signaling are listed and classified as natural sequential machines (namely, the Mealy machines or Moore machines) or finite state automata. By defining the actions (states and transition functions) of these natural automata, the similarity between the computational data processing and plant decision-making processes became obvious. Finally, their putative roles as the parts for plant-based computing or robotic systems are discussed. PMID:23336016

  20. Finding Mouse Models of Human Lymphomas and Leukemia’s using The Jackson Laboratory Mouse Tumor Biology Database

    PubMed Central

    Begley, Dale A.; Sundberg, John P.; Krupke, Debra M.; Neuhauser, Steven B.; Bult, Carol J.; Eppig, Janan T.; Morse, Herbert C.; Ward, Jerrold M.

    2015-01-01

    Many mouse models have been created to study hematopoietic cancer types. There are over thirty hematopoietic tumor types and subtypes, both human and mouse, with various origins, characteristics and clinical prognoses. Determining the specific type of hematopoietic lesion produced in a mouse model and identifying mouse models that correspond to the human subtypes of these lesions has been a continuing challenge for the scientific community. The Mouse Tumor Biology Database (MTB; http://tumor.informatics.jax.org) is designed to facilitate use of mouse models of human cancer by providing detailed histopathologic and molecular information on lymphoma subtypes, including expertly annotated, on line, whole slide scans, and providing a repository for storing information on and querying these data for specific lymphoma models. PMID:26302176

  1. A systems biology perspective on the role of WRKY transcription factors in drought responses in plants.

    PubMed

    Tripathi, Prateek; Rabara, Roel C; Rushton, Paul J

    2014-02-01

    Drought is one of the major challenges affecting crop productivity and yield. However, water stress responses are notoriously multigenic and quantitative with strong environmental effects on phenotypes. It is also clear that water stress often does not occur alone under field conditions but rather in conjunction with other abiotic stresses such as high temperature and high light intensities. A multidisciplinary approach with successful integration of a whole range of -omics technologies will not only define the system, but also provide new gene targets for both transgenic approaches and marker-assisted selection. Transcription factors are major players in water stress signaling and some constitute major hubs in the signaling webs. The main transcription factors in this network include MYB, bHLH, bZIP, ERF, NAC, and WRKY transcription factors. The role of WRKY transcription factors in abiotic stress signaling networks is just becoming apparent and systems biology approaches are starting to define their places in the signaling network. Using systems biology approaches, there are now many transcriptomic analyses and promoter analyses that concern WRKY transcription factors. In addition, reports on nuclear proteomics have identified WRKY proteins that are up-regulated at the protein level by water stress. Interactomics has started to identify different classes of WRKY-interacting proteins. What are often lacking are connections between metabolomics, WRKY transcription factors, promoters, biosynthetic pathways, fluxes and downstream responses. As more levels of the system are characterized, a more detailed understanding of the roles of WRKY transcription factors in drought responses in crops will be obtained.

  2. Prognostic factors in neuroendocrine carcinoma: biological markers are more useful than histomorphological markers

    PubMed Central

    Freis, Patricia; Graillot, Emmanuelle; Rousset, Pascal; Hervieu, Valérie; Chardon, Laurence; Lombard-Bohas, Catherine; Walter, Thomas

    2017-01-01

    Gastroenteropancreatic neuroendocrine carcinomas (GEP-NEC) are a very aggressive type of cancer, for which prognostic factors are lacking. We analysed clinical and histomorphological prognostic markers of overall survival (OS), completed with a record of biological and haematological data of patients diagnosed between December 2002 and December 2015. The median OS was 16 months (95% CI 13.9–18.1). After univariate analysis, performance status (PS) ≥ 2 and stage IV were associated with a worse outcome (9 months and 14 months, respectively), as well as patients with lactate dehydrogenase (LDH) and aspartate aminotransferase (AST) levels ≥ 2 ULN (9 months and 8 months, respectively). After multivariate analysis, LDH and AST levels were the only factors that remained significantly associated with better survival: HR 0.36 (p = 0.04) and 0.31 (p = 0.03), respectively. When patients had elevated LDH and AST levels, OS was 20 months, when they had high LDH or AST levels, 13 months and 8 months in the group with low LDH and AST levels (p < 0.001). Therefore, biological data appeared to be more relevant prognostic factors than usual factors described in other studies (PS, stage, and Ki-67). Considering LDH and AST levels at diagnosis could help physicians to predict survival and to stratify patients for clinical trials. PMID:28074897

  3. Factors facilitating a national quality registry to aid clinical quality improvement: findings of a national survey

    PubMed Central

    Eldh, Ann Catrine; Wallin, Lars; Fredriksson, Mio; Vengberg, Sofie; Winblad, Ulrika; Halford, Christina; Dahlström, Tobias

    2016-01-01

    Objectives While national quality registries (NQRs) are suggested to provide opportunities for systematic follow-up and learning opportunities, and thus clinical improvements, features in registries and contexts triggering such processes are not fully known. This study focuses on one of the world's largest stroke registries, the Swedish NQR Riksstroke, investigating what aspects of the registry and healthcare organisations facilitate or hinder the use of registry data in clinical quality improvement. Methods Following particular qualitative studies, we performed a quantitative survey in an exploratory sequential design. The survey, including 50 items on context, processes and the registry, was sent to managers, physicians and nurses engaged in Riksstroke in all 72 Swedish stroke units. Altogether, 242 individuals were presented with the survey; 163 responded, representing all but two units. Data were analysed descriptively and through multiple linear regression. Results A majority (88%) considered Riksstroke data to facilitate detection of stroke care improvement needs and acknowledged that their data motivated quality improvements (78%). The use of Riksstroke for quality improvement initiatives was associated (R2=0.76) with ‘Colleagues’ call for local results’ (p=<0.001), ‘Management Request of Registry data’ (p=<0.001), and it was said to be ‘Simple to explain the results to colleagues’ (p=0.02). Using stepwise regression, ‘Colleagues’ call for local results’ was identified as the most influential factor. Yet, while 73% reported that managers request registry data, only 39% reported that their colleagues call for the unit's Riksstroke results. Conclusions While an NQR like Riksstroke demonstrates improvement needs and motivates stakeholders to make progress, local stroke care staff and managers need to engage to keep the momentum going in terms of applying registry data when planning, performing and evaluating quality initiatives. PMID

  4. Gastroduodenal Complications After Concurrent Chemoradiation Therapy in Patients With Hepatocellular Carcinoma: Endoscopic Findings and Risk Factors

    SciTech Connect

    Chon, Young Eun; Seong, Jinsil; Kim, Beom Kyung; Cha, Jihye; Kim, Seung Up; Park, Jun Yong; Ahn, Sang Hoon; Han, Kwang-Hyub; Chon, Chae Yoon; Shin, Sung Kwan; Kim, Do Young

    2011-12-01

    Purpose: Concurrent chemoradiation therapy (CCRT) is useful in advanced hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC), but little is known about radiation-induced gastroduodenal complications following therapy. To determine risk factors, we investigated the prevalence and patterns of gastroduodenal complications following CCRT using endoscopy. Methods and Materials: Enrolled in the study were 123 patients treated with CCRT for unresectable HCC between January 1998 and December 2005. Radiation-induced gastroduodenal complications were defined as radiation gastritis/duodenitis, radiation gastric/duodenal ulcer, or other gastroduodenal toxicity associated with radiation, based on Common Terminology Criteria for Adverse Events (CTCAE 3.0). Serious gastroduodenal complications were defined as events occurring within 12 months from completion of CCRT, those requiring prompt therapeutic intervention, or symptoms equivalent to Grade 3 or 4 radiation-related gastroduodenal toxicity, including nausea or vomiting, based on CTCAE 3.0. Results: A month after completion of CCRT, 65 (52.8%) patients displayed endoscopic evidence of radiation-induced gastroduodenal complications. Radiation gastric and duodenal ulcers were found in 32 (26.0%) and 20 (16.3%) patients, respectively; radiation gastritis and duodenitis were found in 50 (40.7%) and 42 (34.1%) patients, respectively. Radiation-related bleeding was observed in 13 patients (10.6%). Serious gastroduodenal complications occurred in 18 patients (14.6%) and were significantly more frequent in patients with liver cirrhosis than in those without cirrhosis (p = 0.043). There were no radiation-related deaths. Conclusions: Endoscopically detectable radiation-induced gastroduodenal complications were common in HCC following CCRT. Although serious complications were uncommon, the frequency was higher in patients with liver cirrhosis; thus, these patients should be closely monitored when receiving CCRT.

  5. Risk factors, microbiological findings and outcomes of necrotizing fasciitis in New Zealand: a retrospective chart review

    PubMed Central

    2012-01-01

    Background The incidence and mortality from necrotizing fasciitis (NF) are increasing in New Zealand (NZ). Triggered by a media report that traditional Samoan tattooing was causing NF, we conducted a chart review to investigate the role of this and other predisposing and precipitating factors and to document NF microbiology, complications and interventions in NZ. Methods We conducted a retrospective review of 299 hospital charts of patients discharged with NF diagnosis codes in eight hospitals in NZ between 2000 and 2006. We documented and compared by ethnicity the prevalence of predisposing and precipitating conditions, bacteria isolated, complications and interventions used. Results Out of 299 charts, 247 fulfilled the case definition. NF was most common in elderly males. Diabetes was the most frequent co-morbid condition, followed by obesity. Nearly a quarter of patients were taking non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAID). Traditional Samoan tattooing was an uncommon cause. Streptococcus pyogenes and Staphylococcus aureus were the two commonly isolated bacteria. Methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus was implicated in a relatively small number of cases. Shock, renal failure, coagulation abnormality and multi-organ dysfunction were common complications. More than 90% of patients underwent surgical debridement, 56% were admitted to an intensive care unit (ICU) and slightly less than half of all patients had blood product transfusion. One in six NF cases had amputations and 23.5% died. Conclusion This chart review found that the highest proportion of NF cases was elderly males with co-morbidities, particularly diabetes and obesity. Tattooing was an uncommon precipitating event. The role of NSAID needs further exploration. NF is a serious disease with severe complications, high case fatality and considerable use of health care resources. PMID:23234429

  6. Stability and biological activity evaluations of PEGylated human basic fibroblast growth factor

    PubMed Central

    Hadadian, Shahin; Shamassebi, Dariush Norouzian; Mirzahoseini, Hasan; Shokrgozar, Mohamad Ali; Bouzari, Saeid; Sepahi, Mina

    2015-01-01

    Background: Human basic fibroblast growth factor (hBFGF) is a heparin-binding growth factor and stimulates the proliferation of a wide variety of cells and tissues causing survival properties and its stability and biological activity improvements have received much attention. Materials and Methods: In the present work, hBFGF produced by engineered Escherichia coli and purified by cation exchange and heparin affinity chromatography, was PEGylated under appropriate condition employing 10 kD polyethylene glycol. The PEGylated form was separated by size exclusion chromatography. Structural, biological activity, and stability evaluations were performed using Fourier transform infrared (FITR) spectroscopy, 3-(4,5-dimethylthiazol-2yl)-2,5-diphenyltetrazolium bromide (MTT) assay and effect denaturing agent, respectively. Results: FITR spectroscopy revealed that both PEGylated and native forms had the same structures. MTT assay showed that PEGyalated form had a 30% reduced biological activity. Fluorescence spectrophotometry indicated that the PEGylated form denatured at higher concentrations of guanidine HCl (1.2 M) compared with native, which denatured at 0.8 M guanidine HCl. Conclusions: PEGylation of hBFGF makes it more stable against denaturing agent but reduces its bioactivity up to 30%. PMID:26605215

  7. Vitamin D, Fibroblast Growth Factor 23 and Incident Cognitive Impairment: Findings from the REGARDS Study

    PubMed Central

    Panwar, Bhupesh; Judd, Suzanne E.; Howard, Virginia J.; Jenny, Nancy S.; Wadley, Virginia G.

    2016-01-01

    Vitamin D protects against cognitive decline in animals but evidence in humans has been inconsistent. Fibroblast growth factor 23 (FGF23) is a hormone that inhibits vitamin D activation yet few studies examined whether FGF23 is associated with cognitive impairment. The objective of this study was to examine associations of 25(OH)D and FGF23 with incident cognitive impairment in the Reasons for Geographic and Racial Differences in Stroke (REGARDS) study, a cohort of black and white adults ≥45 years old. FGF23 and 25(OH)D were measured in 474 incident impairment cases and 561 controls. In multivariable-adjusted models, there were no significant associations of FGF23 with incident cognitive impairment. In analyses using clinically-relevant categories of 25(OH)D (< 20 ng/ml, 20–29.9 ng/ml, ≥30 ng/ml), there was no statistically significant association of lower 25(OH)D concentrations with odds of incident cognitive impairment in models adjusted for demographic, clinical, and laboratory variables and season of blood draw (tertile 1 [≥30 ng/ml] reference; tertile 2 [20–29.9 ng/ml], odds ratio [OR] 0.96, 95%CI 0.67, 1.38; tertile 3 [<20 ng/ml] OR 1.26, 95%CI 0.83, 1.91). When 25(OH)D was modeled as race-specific tertiles, there were no significant associations of 25(OH)D with incident cognitive impairment in whites, whereas lower 25(OH)D was associated with higher odds in blacks (tertile 1 [>23 ng/ml] reference; tertile 2 [15–23 ng/ml], OR 2.96, 95%CI 1.48,5.94; tertile 3 [<15 ng/ml] OR 2.40, 95%CI 1.07,5.40) in the fully adjusted model. In this cohort of older adults, lower race-specific tertiles of 25(OH)D were associated with higher incidence of cognitive impairment in black individuals but not white individuals. These data suggest that treating low 25(OH)D may be a novel strategy for addressing racial disparities in neurocognitive outcomes. PMID:27812184

  8. A multi-functional role of interferon regulatory factor-8 in solid tumor and myeloid cell biology.

    PubMed

    Abrams, Scott I

    2010-03-01

    Understanding mechanisms of tumor escape are critically important not only to improving our knowledge of cancer biology, but also for the overall development of more effective anti-neoplastic therapies. Our laboratory focuses on mechanisms of apoptotic resistance, with emphasis on Fas loss of function as an important determinant of tumor progression. Our work in solid tumor systems has led to the identification of interferon regulatory factor-8 (IRF-8) as a differentially expressed gene important for tumor cell response to cytotoxicity, including Fas-mediated apoptosis and host-anti-tumor immunosurveillance mechanisms. Although IRF-8 was originally identified in the regulation of normal and neoplastic myeloid cell development, these findings revealed a new functional role for IRF-8 in non-hematopoietic malignancies and establish a molecular basis for its potential manipulation during cancer therapy.

  9. Identification of Factors Influencing the Restoration of Cyanobacteria-Dominated Biological Soil Crusts

    PubMed Central

    Bu, Chongfeng; Wu, Shufang; Yang, Yongsheng; Zheng, Mingguo

    2014-01-01

    Biological soil crusts (BSCs) cover >35% of the Earth’s land area and contribute to important ecological functions in arid and semiarid ecosystems, including erosion reduction, hydrological cycling, and nutrient cycling. Artificial rapid cultivation of BSCs can provide a novel alternative to traditional biological methods for controlling soil and water loss such as the planting of trees, shrubs, and grasses. At present, little is known regarding the cultivation of BSCs in the field due to lack of knowledge regarding the influencing factors that control BSCs growth. Thus, we determined the effects of various environmental factors (shade; watering; N, P, K, and Ca concentrations) on the growth of cyanobacteria-dominated BSCs from the Sonoran Desert in the southwestern United States. The soil surface changes and chlorophyll a concentrations were used as proxies of BSC growth and development. After 4 months, five factors were found to impact BSC growth with the following order of importance: NH4NO3 ≈ watering frequency>shading>CaCO3 ≈ KH2PO4. The soil water content was the primary positive factor affecting BSC growth, and BSCs that were watered every 5 days harbored greater biomass than those watered every 10 days. Groups that received NH4NO3 consistently exhibited poor growth, suggesting that fixed N amendment may suppress BSC growth. The effect of shading on the BSC biomass was inconsistent and depended on many factors including the soil water content and availability of nutrients. KH2PO4 and CaCO3 had nonsignificant effects on BSC growth. Collectively, our results indicate that the rapid restoration of BSCs can be controlled and realized by artificial “broadcasting” cultivation through the optimization of environmental factors. PMID:24625498

  10. Selected factors associated with achievement of biology preparatory students and their follow-up to higher level biology courses

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Biermann, Carol A.; Sarinsky, Gary B.

    This study was undertaken to determine whether a biology preparatory course given at an urban community college was helping students to develop the proper skills and background necessary for them to successfully complete follow-up courses in biology. A group of students who enrolled in a biology preparatory course, and subsequently, a follow-up anatomy and physiology or general biology course (experimental group) was compared to a group of students who should have registered for the preparatory course, but who enrolled directly into the anatomy and physiology or general biology course (control group). It was shown that there was no significant difference in their anatomy and physiology or general biology grades. Furthermore, only 16% of the initial group of preparatory students enrolled in and passed a follow-up biology course. Examination of the preparatory group using discriminant analysis ascertained that mathematics score was the principle discriminator between pass/fail groups. A stepwise multiple regression analysis of the variables explaining the preparatory grade showed that mathematics score, reading score, and type of high school degree explained 33% of the variance. Of the students who did pass the preparatory course and enrolled in a follow-up biology class, their preparatory grade was a good predictor of their achievement (measured by follow-up course grade), as determined by multiple regression.

  11. [Effect of backwashing on dominant microorganism stabilization of BEAC filter controlled by the biological factors].

    PubMed

    Liu, Shui; Li, Wei-guang; Gao, Yu-nan; Wang, Guang-zhi; Zhang, Duo-ying; Xie, Feng-bo; Gan, Shi-xin

    2009-12-01

    Six kinds of dominant microorganism used for the bioenhancement activated carbon(BEAC) filter were investigated for the study of backwashing effect on microorganism stabilization. The pilot plant results showed the average biomass loss was 15.47% when only water backwashing invited during the start-up period and air-water scour backwashing invited during stabilization operation period. The optimal backwashing parameters were determined by the biological factor of biomass respiration potential (BRP). The optimal air flow rate for the BEAC filter was 8-10 L/(m2 x s) under which conditions the biomass and biological activity of the dominant microorganism had the minimum variation before and after backwashing. The SEM and PCR-DGGE photos showed that the biomass of dominant microorganism after air-water scour backwashing decreased during start-up period and retained stability during stabilization operation period.

  12. Study of the biological effectiveness of a nanosilver-epidermal growth factor sustained-release carrier.

    PubMed

    Zhou, Jian-DA; Wang, Shao-Hua; Liu, Rui; Zhou, Chun-Jiao; Cao, Ke; Liu, Jin-Yan; Chen, Yao; Chen, Feng-Hua

    2013-04-01

    The aim of the present study was to elucidate the biological effectiveness and character of a nanosilver-epidermal growth factor (EGF) sustained-release carrier. This was synthesized using the self-assembly method and then characterized by transmission electron microscopy and UV spectrophotometry. The biological activity of the sustained release carrier was determined through cytological, bacteriological and wound-healing experiments. The results showed that the nanosilver-EGF sustained-release carrier was well dispersed with uniform particle size and that it had good antibacterial properties similar to those of nanosilver. The nanosilver-EGF sustained-release carrier is superior to EGFs in effectively promoting cell division and proliferation. The results of the wound-healing experiments provide evidence of its curative effects.

  13. Biologic markers of breast cancer in nipple aspirate fluid and nipple discharge are associated with clinical findings1

    PubMed Central

    Sauter, Edward R.; Wagner-Mann, Colette; Ehya, Hormoz; Klein-Szanto, Andres

    2007-01-01

    Background The aim of this prospective study was to assess predictive markers in nipple aspirate fluid (NAF) and pathologic nipple discharge (PND) collected prior to excisional breast biopsy, as well as clinical factors available prior to biopsy, with histopathologic results in women with a radiographically suspicious and/or palpable breast lesion. Methods 208 NAF samples from 191 women were evaluated for the following candidate predictive proteins and cellular markers: prostate-specific antigen (PSA), human glandular kallikrein 2 (hK2), basic fibroblast growth factor (bFGF), S phase fraction (SPF), DNA index, and cytology. Clinical factors included whether or not the lesion was palpable, menopausal status, history of pregnancy, history of birth control or hormone replacement use, and PND. Results Considering all women, bFGF (p=0.005) and SPF (0.031) were associated, and abnormal cytology approached an association (p=0.056) with the presence of breast cancer. Women with PND were less likely to have breast cancer (4 vs. 37%, p<0.001) or palpable lesions (10 vs.43%, p < 0.001), were younger, had lower PSA levels (p=0.046), and were more likely to have atypical NAF cytology (p=0.002). Excluding PND, increased age, postmenopause (both p<0.01), high bFGF (p=0.004) and low PSA (p=0.05) were associated with cancer. The best breast cancer predictive model included cytology, bFGF, and age (88% sensitive and 57% specific). When the data were divided by menopausal status, the optimal models, which included NAF hK2 or PSA and age, were 100% sensitive and 41% specific in pre- vs. 93% sensitive and 12% specific in predicting breast cancer in postmenopausal women. Conclusion NAF and clinical biomarkers are sensitive predictors of whether a breast contains cancer, and may ultimately help guide treatment. Future studies to determine the optimal combination of predictive markers are warranted. PMID:17317033

  14. Finding biomarkers in non-model species: literature mining of transcription factors involved in bovine embryo development

    PubMed Central

    2012-01-01

    Background Since processes in well-known model organisms have specific features different from those in Bos taurus, the organism under study, a good way to describe gene regulation in ruminant embryos would be a species-specific consideration of closely related species to cattle, sheep and pig. However, as highlighted by a recent report, gene dictionaries in pig are smaller than in cattle, bringing a risk to reduce the gene resources to be mined (and so for sheep dictionaries). Bioinformatics approaches that allow an integration of available information on gene function in model organisms, taking into account their specificity, are thus needed. Besides these closely related and biologically relevant species, there is indeed much more knowledge of (i) trophoblast proliferation and differentiation or (ii) embryogenesis in human and mouse species, which provides opportunities for reconstructing proliferation and/or differentiation processes in other mammalian embryos, including ruminants. The necessary knowledge can be obtained partly from (i) stem cell or cancer research to supply useful information on molecular agents or molecular interactions at work in cell proliferation and (ii) mouse embryogenesis to supply useful information on embryo differentiation. However, the total number of publications for all these topics and species is great and their manual processing would be tedious and time consuming. This is why we used text mining for automated text analysis and automated knowledge extraction. To evaluate the quality of this “mining”, we took advantage of studies that reported gene expression profiles during the elongation of bovine embryos and defined a list of transcription factors (or TF, n = 64) that we used as biological “gold standard”. When successful, the “mining” approach would identify them all, as well as novel ones. Methods To gain knowledge on molecular-genetic regulations in a non model organism, we offer an approach based on

  15. Epidermal growth factor and hepatocyte growth factor receptors collaborate to induce multiple biological responses in bovine mammary epithelial cells.

    PubMed

    Accornero, P; Martignani, E; Miretti, S; Starvaggi Cucuzza, L; Baratta, M

    2009-08-01

    The aim of this work was to explore whether epidermal growth factor (EGF) and hepatocyte growth factor (HGF) could increase the biological responses of a mammary epithelial cell line of bovine origin when added simultaneously. We also investigated a possible molecular mechanism underlying this cooperation. The development of mammary gland requires several circulating and locally produced hormones. Hepatocyte growth factor and its tyrosine kinase receptor, mesenchymal-epithelial transition factor (MET), are expressed and temporally regulated during mammary development and differentiation. Epidermal growth factor receptor and its ligands have also been implicated in the growth and morphogenesis of the mammary epithelium. Both EGF and HGF seem to exert a morphogenic program in this tissue; therefore, we hypothesized that these cytokines could act cooperatively in bovine mammary epithelial cells. We have already shown that the bovine BME-UV cell line, a nontumorigenic mammary epithelial line, expresses both MET and EGF receptor. Simultaneous treatment with HGF and EGF elicited an increase in proliferation, dispersion, degradation of extracellular matrix, and motility. Following EGF treatment, BME-UV mammary cells exhibited an increase in MET expression at both the mRNA and protein levels. Long-term treatment of BME-UV cells with HGF and EGF together increased the level of activation of the extracellular signal-regulated kinase 1/2 and protein kinase B signaling pathways when compared with HGF or EGF alone. These data outline a possible cooperative role of the EGF and HGF pathways and indicate that cross-talk between their respective receptors may modulate mammary gland development in the cow.

  16. Macrophage Migration Inhibitory Factor (MIF): Biological Activities and Relation with Cancer.

    PubMed

    Nobre, Camila Cristina Guimarães; de Araújo, Josélio Maria Galvão; Fernandes, Thales Allyrio Araújo de Medeiros; Cobucci, Ricardo Ney Oliveira; Lanza, Daniel Carlos Ferreira; Andrade, Vânia Sousa; Fernandes, José Veríssimo

    2016-10-23

    Macrophage migration inhibitory factor (MIF) emerged in recent years as an important inflammation mediator, playing a prominent role in the pathogenesis of various types of malignant neoplasm. MIF is a glycoprotein that presents a wide spectrum of biological activities and exerts a complex interaction with various cellular signaling pathways, causing imbalance of homeostasis. Experimental and clinical studies show that high levels of MIF are found in almost all types of human cancers and are implicated in seemingly all stages of development of the tumors. The production of MIF is triggered through an autocrine signal emitted by tumor cells, and stimulates the production of cytokines, chemokines, and growth as well as angiogenic factors that lead to growth of the tumor, increasing its aggressiveness and metastatic potential. MIF is produced by virtually all types of human body cells, in response to stress caused by different factors, leading to pathological conditions such as chronic inflammation and immunomodulation with suppression of immune surveillance and of immune response against tumors, angiogenesis, and carcinogenesis. In this review, we present recent advances on the biological activity of MIF, the signaling pathways with which it is involved and their role in tumorigenesis.

  17. The Caveolin‐3 G56S sequence variant of unknown significance: Muscle biopsy findings and functional cell biological analysis

    PubMed Central

    Kollipara, Laxmikanth; Zahedi, René P.; Beckmann, Alf; Mohanadas, Nilane; Bauer, Hartmut; Häusler, Martin; Thoma, Stéphanie; Kress, Wolfram; Senderek, Jan; Weis, Joachim

    2016-01-01

    1 Purpose In the era of next‐generation sequencing, we are increasingly confronted with sequence variants of unknown significance. This phenomenon is also known for variations in Caveolin‐3 and can complicate the molecular diagnosis of the disease. Here, we aimed to study the ambiguous character of the G56S Caveolin‐3 variant. 2 Experimental design A comprehensive approach combining genetic and morphological studies of muscle derived from carriers of the G56S Caveolin‐3 variant were carried out and linked to biochemical assays (including phosphoblot studies and proteome profiling) and morphological investigations of cultured myoblasts. 3 Results Muscles showed moderate chronic myopathic changes in all carriers of the variant. Myogenic RCMH cells expressing the G56S Caveolin‐3 protein presented irregular Caveolin‐3 deposits within the Golgi in addition to a regular localization of the protein to the plasma membrane. This result was associated with abnormal findings on the ultra‐structural level. Phosphoblot studies revealed that G56S affects EGFR‐signaling. Proteomic profiling demonstrated alterations in levels of physiologically relevant proteins which are indicative for antagonization of G56S Caveolin‐3 expression. Remarkably, some proteomic alterations were enhanced by osmotic/mechanical stress. 4 Conclusions and clinical relevance Our studies suggest that G56S might influence the manifestation of myopathic changes upon the presence of additional cellular stress burden. Results of our studies moreover improve the current understanding of (genetic) causes of myopathic disorders classified as caveolinopathies. PMID:27739254

  18. Recent advances in the structural molecular biology of Ets transcription factors: interactions, interfaces and inhibition.

    PubMed

    Cooper, Christopher D O; Newman, Joseph A; Gileadi, Opher

    2014-02-01

    The Ets family of eukaryotic transcription factors is based around the conserved Ets DNA-binding domain. Although their DNA-binding selectivity is biochemically and structurally well characterized, structures of homodimeric and ternary complexes point to Ets domains functioning as versatile protein-interaction modules. In the present paper, we review the progress made over the last decade to elucidate the structural mechanisms involved in modulation of DNA binding and protein partner selection during dimerization. We see that Ets domains, although conserved around a core architecture, have evolved to utilize a variety of interaction surfaces and binding mechanisms, reflecting Ets domains as dynamic interfaces for both DNA and protein interaction. Furthermore, we discuss recent advances in drug development for inhibition of Ets factors, and the roles structural biology can play in their future.

  19. Familial monoclonal gammopathy of undetermined significance and multiple myeloma: epidemiology, risk factors, and biological characteristics.

    PubMed

    Greenberg, Alexandra J; Rajkumar, S Vincent; Vachon, Celine M

    2012-06-07

    Monoclonal gammopathy of undetermined significance (MGUS), a precursor to multiple myeloma (MM), is one of the most common premalignant conditions in the general population. The cause of MGUS is largely unknown. Recent studies show that there is an increased prevalence of MGUS in blood relatives of persons with lymphoproliferative and plasma cell proliferative disorders, suggesting presence of shared underlying genetic influences. In the past few years, additional studies have examined risk factors and biologic characteristics that may contribute to the increased prevalence of MGUS among relatives of probands with MGUS, MM, and other blood malignancies. This article reviews the known epidemiology and risk factors for familial MGUS and myeloma, the risk of lymphoproliferative disorders and other malignancies among blood-relatives of patients with MGUS and MM, and discusses future directions for research.

  20. Structure, expression, and biological function of INSM1 transcription factor in neuroendocrine differentiation

    PubMed Central

    Lan, Michael S.; Breslin, Mary B.

    2009-01-01

    Zinc-finger transcription factors are DNA-binding proteins that are implicated in many diverse biological functions. INSM1 (formerly IA-1) contains five zinc-finger motifs and functions as a transcription factor. INSM1 protein structure is highly conserved in homologues of different species. It is predominantly expressed in developing neuroendocrine tissues and the nervous system in mammals. INSM1 represents an important player in early embryonic neurogenesis. In pancreatic endocrine cell differentiation, Ngn3 first activates INSM1 and subsequently NeuroD/β2. Conversely, INSM1 exerts a feedback mechanism to suppress NeuroD/β2 and its own gene expression. INSM1 gene ablation in the mouse results in the impairment of pancreatic endocrine cell maturation. Further, deletion of INSM1 severely impairs catecholamine biosynthesis and secretion from the adrenal gland that results in early embryonic lethality. Genetically, INSM1 acts as a downstream factor of Mash 1 and Phox2b in the differentiation of the sympatho-adrenal lineage. In the developing neocortex, mouse embryos lacking INSM1 expression contain half the number of basal progenitors and show a reduction in cortical plate radial thickness. Cell signaling studies reveal that INSM1 contributes to the induction of cell cycle arrest/exit necessary to facilitate cellular differentiation. INSM1 is highly expressed in tumors of neuroendocrine origin. Hence, its promoter could serve as a tumor-specific promoter that drives a specific targeted cancer gene therapy for the treatment of neuroendocrine tumors. Taken together, all of these features of INSM1 strongly support its role as an important regulator during neuroendocrine differentiation.—Lan, M. S., Breslin, M. B. Structure, expression, and biological function of INSM1 transcription factor in neuroendocrine differentiation. PMID:19246490

  1. Impact of environmental factors and biological soil crust types on soil respiration in a desert ecosystem.

    PubMed

    Feng, Wei; Zhang, Yuqing; Jia, Xin; Wu, Bin; Zha, Tianshan; Qin, Shugao; Wang, Ben; Shao, Chenxi; Liu, Jiabin; Fa, Keyu

    2014-01-01

    The responses of soil respiration to environmental conditions have been studied extensively in various ecosystems. However, little is known about the impacts of temperature and moisture on soils respiration under biological soil crusts. In this study, CO2 efflux from biologically-crusted soils was measured continuously with an automated chamber system in Ningxia, northwest China, from June to October 2012. The highest soil respiration was observed in lichen-crusted soil (0.93 ± 0.43 µmol m-2 s-1) and the lowest values in algae-crusted soil (0.73 ± 0.31 µmol m-2 s-1). Over the diurnal scale, soil respiration was highest in the morning whereas soil temperature was highest in the midday, which resulted in diurnal hysteresis between the two variables. In addition, the lag time between soil respiration and soil temperature was negatively correlated with the soil volumetric water content and was reduced as soil water content increased. Over the seasonal scale, daily mean nighttime soil respiration was positively correlated with soil temperature when moisture exceeded 0.075 and 0.085 m3 m-3 in lichen- and moss-crusted soil, respectively. However, moisture did not affect on soil respiration in algae-crusted soil during the study period. Daily mean nighttime soil respiration normalized by soil temperature increased with water content in lichen- and moss-crusted soil. Our results indicated that different types of biological soil crusts could affect response of soil respiration to environmental factors. There is a need to consider the spatial distribution of different types of biological soil crusts and their relative contributions to the total C budgets at the ecosystem or landscape level.

  2. Production of feline leukemia inhibitory factor with biological activity in Escherichia coli.

    PubMed

    Kanegi, R; Hatoya, S; Tsujimoto, Y; Takenaka, S; Nishimura, T; Wijewardana, V; Sugiura, K; Takahashi, M; Kawate, N; Tamada, H; Inaba, T

    2016-07-15

    Leukemia inhibitory factor (LIF) is a cytokine which is essential for oocyte and embryo development, embryonic stem cell, and induced pluripotent stem cell maintenance. Leukemia inhibitory factor improves the maturation of oocytes in the human and the mouse. However, feline LIF (fLIF) cloning and effects on oocytes during IVM have not been reported. Thus, we cloned complete cDNA of fLIF and examined its biological activity and effects on oocytes during IVM in the domestic cat. The aminoacid sequence of fLIF revealed a homology of 81% or 92% with that of mouse or human. The fLIF produced by pCold TF DNA in Escherichia coli was readily soluble and after purification showed bioactivity in maintaining the undifferentiated state of mouse embryonic stem cells and enhancing the proliferation of human erythrocyte leukemia cells. Furthermore, 10- and 100-ng/mL fLIF induced cumulus expansion with or without FSH and EGF (P < 0.05). The rate of metaphase II oocytes was also improved with 100-ng/mL fLIF (P < 0.05). We therefore confirmed the successful production for the first time of biologically active fLIF and revealed its effects on oocytes during IVM in the domestic cat. Feline LIF will further improve reproduction and stem cell research in the feline family.

  3. Association of biological, psychological and lifestyle risk factors for eating disturbances in adolescents.

    PubMed

    Gutiérrez, Teresa; Espinoza, Paola; Penelo, Eva; Mora, Marisol; González, Marcela L; Rosés, Rocío; Raich, Rosa M

    2015-06-01

    We aimed to assess the association of several risk factors for eating disturbances in adolescents. Participants were 448 girls and boys aged 12-15 years. Being female, higher body mass index, internalisation of standard of appearance, perfectionism, body dissatisfaction, number of lifetime addictive behaviours and lower self-esteem were associated with higher eating disturbance scores, whereas frequency of sedentary behaviours and physical activity were not (R(2) ⩾ 41%). Findings suggest the need to guide prevention efforts towards the broad spectrum of individual potentially modifiable factors. A non-specific comprehensive perspective may be adequate to prevent problems related to weight, body image and drug use.

  4. An evaluation of a foundational course in high school biology as measured by cognitive and affective factors

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rudolph, Cynthia Thompson

    There is little written about the use of foundational courses in high school science. This study seeks to identify if a foundational course in high school biology improves student outcomes as measured by Biology I EOC exam proficiency scale scores and student growth. Efforts were made to determine differences in cognitive skill areas and affective/conative skill areas as students progress from the foundational course of Greenhouse Biology (GH Bio) to Biology I. Three years of test score data from over 15,000 student participants are evaluated, as well as extant survey data from biology teachers and district student scheduling personnel. Findings from the study indicate GH Bio does make a difference in academic outcomes in students taking the foundational course before taking the Biology I course, and subsequently, the Biology I EOC exam. Findings also show there are cognitive, affective, and conative differences between the GH Bio students and their non-GH Bio peers while in Biology I. The study also seeks to determine why some students are scheduled for GH Bio and others are not. Findings indicate there are variances as to the reasons and intent for scheduling students into GH Bio. Some students who could benefit from the course are not being scheduled into the course.

  5. Factors Associated with Self-Injurious Behaviors in Children with Autism Spectrum Disorder: Findings from Two Large National Samples.

    PubMed

    Soke, G N; Rosenberg, S A; Hamman, R F; Fingerlin, T; Rosenberg, C R; Carpenter, L; Lee, L C; Giarelli, E; Wiggins, L D; Durkin, M S; Reynolds, A; DiGuiseppi, C

    2017-02-01

    In this study, we explored potential associations among self-injurious behaviors (SIB) and a diverse group of protective and risk factors in children with autism spectrum disorder from two databases: Autism and Developmental Disabilities Monitoring (ADDM) Network and the Autism Speaks-Autism Treatment Network (AS-ATN). The presence of SIB was determined from children's records in ADDM and a parent questionnaire in AS-ATN. We used multiple imputation to account for missing data and a non-linear mixed model with site as a random effect to test for associations. Despite differences between the two databases, similar associations were found; SIB were associated with developmental, behavioral, and somatic factors. Implications of these findings are discussed in relation to possible etiology, future longitudinal studies, and clinical practice.

  6. Risk factors for venous thromboembolism in cancer: novel findings from the Vienna Cancer and Thrombosis Study (CATS).

    PubMed

    Königsbrügge, Oliver; Pabinger, Ingrid; Ay, Cihan

    2014-05-01

    Venous thromboembolism (VTE) occurs frequently in patients with cancer and contributes to elevated morbidity and mortality. Risk factors for the occurrence of VTE events in patients with cancer have been investigated in numerous clinical studies. For now more than 10 years, the Vienna Cancer and Thrombosis Study (CATS) has focused on the identification of parameters predictive of future VTE occurrence. CATS has contributed to new findings, which may help identify patients at high risk of developing VTE, by means of biomarkers (such as D-dimer, prothrombin fragment 1+2, soluble P-selectin, platelet count, coagulation factor VIII activity, thrombin generation potential, etc.). The association of tissue factor bearing microparticles and the mean platelet volume with the risk of VTE was also elaborately investigated in the framework of CATS. More recently CATS has researched clinical and clinicopathologic parameters which contribute to identification of patients at risk of VTE. The type of cancer is one of the most important risk factor for VTE occurrence. Also the stage of cancer and the histological grade of a tumor have been found to be associated with the occurrence of cancer-related VTE. In further investigations, venous diseases including a history of previous VTE, a history of superficial thrombophlebitis and the presence of varicose veins, have been associated with the risk of VTE in CATS.

  7. Nutritional, socioeconomic, and reproductive factors in relation to female breast cancer mortality: findings from a cross-national study.

    PubMed

    Hebert, J R; Rosen, A

    1996-01-01

    Using data from 66 countries, we conducted an international comparison study to identify the most important predictors of female breast cancer mortality rates. This study was unique in that it included data on per capita tobacco disappearance, alcohol consumption, socioeconomic status (SES), reproductive factors, and a wide array of nutritional data. Results of correlation and single independent-variable linear regression models indicated that breast cancer mortality was most strongly associated with dietary factors typically associated with affluence, especially animal products. The strongest negative (i.e., protective) associations were with those variables related to increased fertility and population growth. A multiple linear regression that accounted for all important predictors simultaneously explained 91% of the variability in mortality rates across these countries. This model indicated a strong positive association between breast cancer mortality and calories from animal sources. Fish and cereal products as well as annual percentage growth in population appeared to exert protective effects. Despite the limitations of this type of analysis, the observed effect of high meat and animal product consumption, the major contributor to variability in dietary fat, as well as the protective effect of increased fertility are consistent with the known biology of breast cancer. The protective effect of fish and cereal consumption that we observed will require further study.

  8. Biology of Bone Tissue: Structure, Function, and Factors That Influence Bone Cells.

    PubMed

    Florencio-Silva, Rinaldo; Sasso, Gisela Rodrigues da Silva; Sasso-Cerri, Estela; Simões, Manuel Jesus; Cerri, Paulo Sérgio

    2015-01-01

    Bone tissue is continuously remodeled through the concerted actions of bone cells, which include bone resorption by osteoclasts and bone formation by osteoblasts, whereas osteocytes act as mechanosensors and orchestrators of the bone remodeling process. This process is under the control of local (e.g., growth factors and cytokines) and systemic (e.g., calcitonin and estrogens) factors that all together contribute for bone homeostasis. An imbalance between bone resorption and formation can result in bone diseases including osteoporosis. Recently, it has been recognized that, during bone remodeling, there are an intricate communication among bone cells. For instance, the coupling from bone resorption to bone formation is achieved by interaction between osteoclasts and osteoblasts. Moreover, osteocytes produce factors that influence osteoblast and osteoclast activities, whereas osteocyte apoptosis is followed by osteoclastic bone resorption. The increasing knowledge about the structure and functions of bone cells contributed to a better understanding of bone biology. It has been suggested that there is a complex communication between bone cells and other organs, indicating the dynamic nature of bone tissue. In this review, we discuss the current data about the structure and functions of bone cells and the factors that influence bone remodeling.

  9. Brain responses to biological motion predict treatment outcome in young adults with autism receiving Virtual Reality Social Cognition Training: Preliminary findings.

    PubMed

    Yang, Y J Daniel; Allen, Tandra; Abdullahi, Sebiha M; Pelphrey, Kevin A; Volkmar, Fred R; Chapman, Sandra B

    2017-03-29

    Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) is characterized by remarkable heterogeneity in social, communication, and behavioral deficits, creating a major barrier in identifying effective treatments for a given individual with ASD. To facilitate precision medicine in ASD, we utilized a well-validated biological motion neuroimaging task to identify pretreatment biomarkers that can accurately forecast the response to an evidence-based behavioral treatment, Virtual Reality-Social Cognition Training (VR-SCT). In a preliminary sample of 17 young adults with high-functioning ASD, we identified neural predictors of change in emotion recognition after VR-SCT. The predictors were characterized by the pretreatment brain activations to biological vs. scrambled motion in the neural circuits that support (a) language comprehension and interpretation of incongruent auditory emotions and prosody, and (b) processing socio-emotional experience and interpersonal affective information, as well as emotional regulation. The predictive value of the findings for individual adults with ASD was supported by regression-based multivariate pattern analyses with cross validation. To our knowledge, this is the first pilot study that shows neuroimaging-based predictive biomarkers for treatment effectiveness in adults with ASD. The findings have potentially far-reaching implications for developing more precise and effective treatments for ASD.

  10. Signaling by the tumor necrosis factor receptor superfamily in B-cell biology and disease.

    PubMed

    Rickert, Robert C; Jellusova, Julia; Miletic, Ana V

    2011-11-01

    Members of the tumor necrosis factor receptor superfamily (TNFRSF) participate prominently in B-cell maturation and function. In particular, B-cell activating factor belonging to the TNF family receptor (BAFF-R), B-cell maturation antigen (BCMA), and transmembrane activator and calcium modulator and cyclophilin ligand interactor (TACI) play critical roles in promoting B-cell survival at distinct stages of development by engaging a proliferation-inducing ligand (APRIL) and/or BAFF. CD40 is also essential for directing the humoral response to T-cell-dependent antigens. Signaling by the TNFRSF is mediated primarily, albeit not exclusively, via the TNFR-associated factor (TRAF) proteins and activation of the canonical and/or non-canonical nuclear factor-κB (NF-κB) pathways. Dysregulated signaling by TNFRSF members can promote B-cell survival and proliferation, causing autoimmunity and neoplasia. In this review, we present a current understanding of the functions of and distinctions between APRIL/BAFF signaling by their respective receptors expressed on particular B-cell subsets. These findings are compared and contrasted with CD40 signaling, which employs similar signaling conduits to achieve distinct cellular outcomes in the context of the germinal center response. We also underscore how new findings and conceptual insights into TNFRSF signaling are facilitating the understanding of B-cell malignancies and autoimmune diseases.

  11. Electrical injuries. Biological values measurements as a prediction factor of local evolution in electrocutions lesions

    PubMed Central

    Teodoreanu, R; Popescu, SA; Lascar, I

    2014-01-01

    Abstract Rationale. Taking into account the incidence and the severity of electrocutions, we consider it extremely necessary to find effective, appropriate and particularized therapeutic solutions aimed at improving the survival, decreasing the mortality, ensuring a superior functional and aesthetic effect and facilitating the social reintegration. Given the severity of the general condition of the electrically injured patient and the fact that any worsening of the lesions has a systemic echo, the selection of the timing for re-excision is very important. The postponement of the surgical timing can break the precarious metabolic equilibrium and can hasten the installation of the multisystem organ failure (MSOF). Objective. The study is intended to establish a possible connection between the clinical evolution of the electrically injured patient and the dynamics of three important biological parameters, able to provide data concerning the therapeutic attitude to be followed. The patients with a diagnostic of high-voltage electrocution, who will be admitted to the Clinic, will be followed for a period of 2 years. The parameters to be followed daily will be: - Creatin-kinase, as a marker of muscular damage - Hemoglobin, as a marker of tissue oxygenation - Leukocytes, as an indicator of a possible septic evolution. The therapeutic alternatives, including the administration of antiplatelet drugs will be studied. Methods and Results. In the period October 2010-June 2013 a total of 12 cases of high-voltage electrocution were admitted in our clinic. Among these, some could be placed in the study of 7 cases, as the remaining patients died within the first 24 hours of hospitalization due to the endured lesions. All the patients were admitted to the ICU ward that supported the treatment and monitoring until their stabilization, at which time they were transferred to the ward. All the patients received anti-thromboxane treatment from their admission (injectable NSAIDs

  12. Effects of an Educational Experience Incorporating an Inventory of Factors Potentially Influencing Student Acceptance of Biological Evolution

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Wiles, Jason R.; Alters, Brian

    2011-01-01

    This investigation provides an extensive review of scientific, religious, and otherwise non-scientific factors that may influence student acceptance of biological evolution. We also measure the extent to which students' levels of acceptance changed following an educational experience designed to address an inclusive inventory of factors identified…

  13. Predicting protein-protein interactions from multimodal biological data sources via nonnegative matrix tri-factorization.

    PubMed

    Wang, Hua; Huang, Heng; Ding, Chris; Nie, Feiping

    2013-04-01

    Protein interactions are central to all the biological processes and structural scaffolds in living organisms, because they orchestrate a number of cellular processes such as metabolic pathways and immunological recognition. Several high-throughput methods, for example, yeast two-hybrid system and mass spectrometry method, can help determine protein interactions, which, however, suffer from high false-positive rates. Moreover, many protein interactions predicted by one method are not supported by another. Therefore, computational methods are necessary and crucial to complete the interactome expeditiously. In this work, we formulate the problem of predicting protein interactions from a new mathematical perspective--sparse matrix completion, and propose a novel nonnegative matrix factorization (NMF)-based matrix completion approach to predict new protein interactions from existing protein interaction networks. Through using manifold regularization, we further develop our method to integrate different biological data sources, such as protein sequences, gene expressions, protein structure information, etc. Extensive experimental results on four species, Saccharomyces cerevisiae, Drosophila melanogaster, Homo sapiens, and Caenorhabditis elegans, have shown that our new methods outperform related state-of-the-art protein interaction prediction methods.

  14. Prognostic factors, predictive markers and cancer biology: the triad for successful oral cancer chemoprevention.

    PubMed

    Monteiro de Oliveira Novaes, Jose Augusto; William, William N

    2016-10-01

    Oral squamous cell carcinomas represent a significant cancer burden worldwide. Unfortunately, chemoprevention strategies investigated to date have failed to produce an agent considered standard of care to prevent oral cancers. Nonetheless, recent advances in clinical trial design may streamline drug development in this setting. In this manuscript, we review some of these improvements, including risk prediction tools based on molecular markers that help select patients most suitable for chemoprevention. We also discuss the opportunities that novel preclinical models and modern molecular profiling techniques will bring to the prevention field in the near future, and propose a clinical trials framework that incorporates molecular prognostic factors, predictive markers and cancer biology as a roadmap to improve chemoprevention strategies for oral cancers.

  15. [Tumor necrosis factor alfa in cardiovascular diseases: molecular biology and genetics].

    PubMed

    Fragoso Lona, José Manuel; Sierra Martínez, Mónica; Vargas Alarcón, Gilberto; Barrios Rodas, Angélica; Ramírez Bello, Julián

    2013-01-01

    Cardiovascular diseases are a major public health problem globally. In 1997, cardiovascular disease caused 41% of deaths in the United States. It has been reported that about 60 million people in the United States have some form of cardiovascular disease. These entities are chronic conditions initiated by a dysregulation of the immune response. One gene and its protein product -tumor necrosis factor a (TNF-α)- a powerful pleiotropic cytokine with multiple cellular functions, plays a role in the inflammation, initiation, development, susceptibility, severity, and response to treatment, etc. of coronary artery disease (CAD). The focus of the present review is to summarize recent evidence showing the biological role of TNF-α in the initiation and progression of endothelial dysfunction and complications of atherosclerosis, and as a genetic variation of TNF-α confer susceptibility, severity, and treatment response in CAD: ST-segment elevation myocardial infarction and non-ST segment elevation myocardial infarction, unstable angina, and coronary restenosis.

  16. Sex differences in parking are affected by biological and social factors.

    PubMed

    Wolf, Claudia C; Ocklenburg, Sebastian; Oren, Beyza; Becker, Cordula; Hofstätter, Andrea; Bös, Christa; Popken, Markus; Thorstensen, Truls; Güntürkün, Onur

    2010-07-01

    The stereotype of women's limited parking skills is deeply anchored in modern culture. Although laboratory tests prove men's average superiority in visuospatial tasks and parking requires complex, spatial skills, underlying mechanisms remain unexplored. Here, we investigated performance of beginners (nine women, eight men) and more experienced drivers (21 women, 27 men) at different parking manoeuvres. Furthermore, subjects conducted the mental rotation test and self-assessed their parking skills. We show that men park more accurately and especially faster than women. Performance is related to mental rotation skills and self-assessment in beginners, but only to self-assessment in more experienced drivers. We assume that, due to differential feedback, self-assessment incrementally replaces the controlling influence of mental rotation, as parking is trained with increasing experience. Results suggest that sex differences in spatial cognition persist in real-life situations, but that socio-psychological factors modulate the biological causes of sex differences.

  17. Prediction of Small Bowel Obstruction Caused by Bezoars Using Risk Factor Categories on Multidetector Computed Tomographic Findings

    PubMed Central

    Kuang, Lian-qin; Cheng, Cheng

    2016-01-01

    Objectives. The aim of this study was to detect factors associated with small bowel obstruction (SBO) caused by bezoars on multidetector computed tomographic findings. Methods. We retrospectively reviewed 61 patients who had bezoars in the small bowels on MDCT. The patients were divided into SBO patients group and non-SBO patients group. The mean values of the diameter, volume, and CT attenuation as well as location and characteristics of the bezoars were compared between the two groups. Multivariate analysis was performed to determine factors associated with SBO. Results. There were 32 patients (52.5%) in the SBO group and 29 patients (47.5%) in the non-SBO group. The bezoars in the SBO group had greater values of each mean diameter and mean volume than those in the non-SBO group (3.2 ± 0.5 cm versus 1.6 ± 0.7 cm, P < 0.0001, 14.9 ± 6.4 cm3 versus 2.5 ± 2.7 cm3, P < 0.0001, resp.) and had a lower CT attenuation than the non-SBO group (55.5 ± 23.4 versus 173.0 ± 68.0, P < 0.0001). The SBO group had higher prevalence of phytobezoar appearance (75.0% versus 10.3%, P < 0.0001). Major diameters of bezoar and phytobezoar were significant independent risk factors associated with SBO (odds ratio = 36.09, 8.26, resp., and P = 0.0004, 0.044, resp.). Conclusions. Major diameter of bezoar or phytobezoar is a potential risk factor associated with SBO. PMID:27403434

  18. Climatic, tectonic, and biological factors affecting the oxidation state of the atmosphere and oceans: Implications for Phanerozoic O2 evolution

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ozaki, K.; Tajika, E.

    2015-12-01

    The Earth's atmosphere and oceans have seen fundamental changes in its oxidation state in response to the climatic, tectonic and geochemical variations. Over the past decade, several geochemical proxies have led to significant progress in understanding the paleredox states of ancient oceans. However, a quantitative interpretation of these data for atmospheric O2 levels remain unclear because the relationship between atmospheric O2 levels (pO2) and oceanic redox state depends on several environmental factors, such as terrestrial weathering rate, sea-level stands, and sinking rate of particulate organic matter (POM) in the water column and so on. It is widely thought that the redox-dependent P cycling also plays a crucial role in regulating pO2 because it acts as a negative feedback on a geological timescale. It is important that strength of this feedback for a given pO2 is also modulated by environmental factors, affecting not only O2 levels at steady state but also its susceptibility to environmental changes. In this study, a quantitative role of environmental factors in the oxidation state of Earth's surface environment is evaluated with an oceanic biogeochemical cycle model (CANOPS) coupled with global C cycle model, which enables us to understand the ancient CO2 and O2 evolution. Our results demonstrate that atmospheric O2 level at steady state is affected by CO2 input flux from Earth's interior via changes in biogeochemical cycles, but its response is modulated by several internal factors such as shelf area and POM sinking rate. We also found that early Paleozoic atmospheric O2 levels before the advent of land plant would be determined so that oceans may locate at the "edge of anoxia (EoA)" where the redox-dependency of marine P cycle plays a crucial role in regulating O2 cycle, and that POM sinking rate has a great impact on the EoA. Our findings provide insights into the O2 cycle over the Phanerozoic in response to the climatic and tectonic variations and

  19. Factors in seventh grade academics associated with performance levels on the tenth grade biology end of course test in selected middle and high schools in northwest Georgia

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ward, Jennifer Henry

    This study attempted to identify factors in seventh grade academics that are associated with overall success in tenth grade biology. The study addressed the following research questions: Are there significant differences in performance levels in seventh grade Criterion Referenced Competency Test (CRCT) scores in science, math, reading, and language arts associated with performance categories in tenth grade biology End of Course Test (EOCT) and the following demographic variables : gender, ethnicity, socioeconomic status, disability category, and English language proficiency level? Is there a relationship among the categorical variables on the tenth grade biology EOCT and the same five demographic variables? Retrospective causal comparative research was used on a representative sample from the middle schools in three North Georgia counties who took the four CRCTs in the 2006-2007 school year, and took the biology EOCT in the 2009-2010 school year. Chi square was used to determine the relationships of the various demographic variables on three biology EOCT performance categories. Twoway ANOVA determined relationships between the seventh grade CRCT scores of students in the various demographic groups and their performance levels on the biology EOCT. Students' performance levels on the biology EOCT matched their performance levels on the seventh grade CRCTs consistently. Females performed better than males on all seventh grade CRCTs. Black and Hispanic students did worse than White and Asian/Asian Indian students on the math CRCT. Students living in poverty did worse on reading and language arts CRCTs than students who were better off. Special education students did worse on science, reading, and language arts CRCTs than students not receiving special education services. English language learners did worse than native English speakers on all seventh grade CRCTs. These findings suggest that remedial measures may be taken in the seventh grade that could impact

  20. Biological characterization of human fibroblast-derived mitogenic factors for human melanocytes.

    PubMed Central

    Imokawa, G; Yada, Y; Morisaki, N; Kimura, M

    1998-01-01

    To clarify the paracrine linkage between human fibroblasts and melanocytes in cutaneous pigmentation, we studied the effects of human fibroblast-derived factors on the proliferation of human melanocytes. In medium conditioned for 4 days with human fibroblast culture, factors were produced that markedly stimulated DNA synthesis of human melanocytes. The stimulatory effect was higher in medium conditioned with fibroblasts from aged skin than in medium conditioned with fibroblasts from young skin, and was interrupted by inhibitors of tyrosine kinase, such as tyrphostin, genistein and herbimycin, but not by inhibitors of protein kinases C and A, such as H-7 and phloretin. The conditioned medium was also capable of activating mitogen-activated protein kinase of human melanocytes, with old fibroblasts being more effective than young ones. Analysis of factors released into the conditioned medium revealed that levels of hepatocyte growth factor (HGF) and stem cell factor (SCF) were increased in old-fibroblast-conditioned medium compared with young-fibroblast-conditioned medium. In contrast, levels of basic fibroblast growth factor (bFGF) were similar in both media. When the conditioned medium was treated with HGF antibody with or without SCF antibody, the increase in DNA synthesis by human melanocytes was decreased to 20% of the elevated level, whereas antibodies to bFGF had no effect. Analysis of the medium conditioned for 4 days after cytokine application demonstrated that, of the cytokines tested, interleukin 1alpha and tumour necrosis factor alpha are highly effective in stimulating HGF secretion by old fibroblasts. HGF and SCF, but not bFGF, were markedly increased in culture medium in the presence of IL-1alpha, and this stimulatory effect was confined to young human fibroblasts. These findings suggest that SCF and HGF derived from human fibroblasts may play a part in regulating cutaneous pigmentation during inflammation and aging. PMID:9494091

  1. 5th National Audit Project (NAP5) on accidental awareness during general anaesthesia: summary of main findings and risk factors.

    PubMed

    Pandit, J J; Andrade, J; Bogod, D G; Hitchman, J M; Jonker, W R; Lucas, N; Mackay, J H; Nimmo, A F; O'Connor, K; O'Sullivan, E P; Paul, R G; Palmer, J H M G; Plaat, F; Radcliffe, J J; Sury, M R J; Torevell, H E; Wang, M; Hainsworth, J; Cook, T M

    2014-10-01

    We present the main findings of the 5th National Audit Project (NAP5) on accidental awareness during general anaesthesia (AAGA). Incidences were estimated using reports of accidental awareness as the numerator, and a parallel national anaesthetic activity survey to provide denominator data. The incidence of certain/probable and possible accidental awareness cases was ~1:19,600 anaesthetics (95% confidence interval 1:16,700-23,450). However, there was considerable variation across subtypes of techniques or subspecialities. The incidence with neuromuscular block (NMB) was ~1:8200 (1:7030-9700), and without, it was ~1:135,900 (1:78,600-299,000). The cases of AAGA reported to NAP5 were overwhelmingly cases of unintended awareness during NMB. The incidence of accidental awareness during Caesarean section was ~1:670 (1:380-1300). Two-thirds (82, 66%) of cases of accidental awareness experiences arose in the dynamic phases of anaesthesia, namely induction of and emergence from anaesthesia. During induction of anaesthesia, contributory factors included: use of thiopental, rapid sequence induction, obesity, difficult airway management, NMB, and interruptions of anaesthetic delivery during movement from anaesthetic room to theatre. During emergence from anaesthesia, residual paralysis was perceived by patients as accidental awareness, and commonly related to a failure to ensure full return of motor capacity. One-third (43, 33%) of accidental awareness events arose during the maintenance phase of anaesthesia, mostly due to problems at induction or towards the end of anaesthesia. Factors increasing the risk of accidental awareness included: female sex, age (younger adults, but not children), obesity, anaesthetist seniority (junior trainees), previous awareness, out-of-hours operating, emergencies, type of surgery (obstetric, cardiac, thoracic), and use of NMB. The following factors were not risk factors for accidental awareness: ASA physical status, race, and use or omission

  2. Anti-tumor necrosis factor treatment in cherubism--clinical, radiological and histological findings in two children.

    PubMed

    Hero, M; Suomalainen, A; Hagström, J; Stoor, P; Kontio, R; Alapulli, H; Arte, S; Toiviainen-Salo, S; Lahdenne, P; Mäkitie, O

    2013-01-01

    Cherubism is a rare and disfiguring genetic disorder with excessive bone resorption and multilocular lesions in the mandible and/or maxilla. The disease-causing gain-of-function mutations in the SH3-binding protein 2 (SH3BP2) gene result in increased myeloid cell responses to macrophage colony stimulating factor and RANK ligand, formation of hyperactive osteoclasts (giant cells), and hyper-reactive macrophages that produce excessive amounts of the inflammatory cytokine tumor necrosis factor α (TNF-α). Recent findings in the cherubism mouse model suggest that TNF-α plays a major role in disease pathogenesis and that removal of TNF-α prevents development of the bone phenotype. We treated two children with cherubism with the TNF-α antagonist adalimumab for approximately 2.5 years and collected extensive clinical, radiological and histological follow-up data during the treatment. Histologically the treatment resulted in a significant reduction in the number of multinucleated giant cells and TNF-α staining positivity in both patients. As evaluated by computed tomography and magnetic resonance imaging, the lesions in Patient 1 showed either moderate enlargement (mandibular symphysis) or remained stable (mandibular rami and body, the maxilla). In Patient 2, the lesions in mandibular symphysis showed enlargement during the first 8 months of treatment, and thereafter the lesions remained unchanged. Bone formation and resorption markers remained unaffected. The treatment was well tolerated. Based on our findings, TNF-α antagonist may decrease the formation of pathogenic giant cells, but does not result in lesion regression or prevent lesion expansion in active cherubism. TNF-α modulator treatment thus does not appear to provide sufficient amelioration for patients suffering from cherubism.

  3. Influence of Biological Factors on Connectivity Patterns for Concholepas concholepas (loco) in Chile

    PubMed Central

    Garavelli, Lysel; Colas, François; Verley, Philippe; Kaplan, David Michael; Yannicelli, Beatriz; Lett, Christophe

    2016-01-01

    In marine benthic ecosystems, larval connectivity is a major process influencing the maintenance and distribution of invertebrate populations. Larval connectivity is a complex process to study as it is determined by several interacting factors. Here we use an individual-based, biophysical model, to disentangle the effects of such factors, namely larval vertical migration, larval growth, larval mortality, adults fecundity, and habitat availability, for the marine gastropod Concholepas concholepas (loco) in Chile. Lower transport success and higher dispersal distances are observed including larval vertical migration in the model. We find an overall decrease in larval transport success to settlement areas from northern to southern Chile. This spatial gradient results from the combination of current direction and intensity, seawater temperature, and available habitat. From our simulated connectivity patterns we then identify subpopulations of loco along the Chilean coast, which could serve as a basis for spatial management of this resource in the future. PMID:26751574

  4. Influence of Biological Factors on Connectivity Patterns for Concholepas concholepas (loco) in Chile.

    PubMed

    Garavelli, Lysel; Colas, François; Verley, Philippe; Kaplan, David Michael; Yannicelli, Beatriz; Lett, Christophe

    2016-01-01

    In marine benthic ecosystems, larval connectivity is a major process influencing the maintenance and distribution of invertebrate populations. Larval connectivity is a complex process to study as it is determined by several interacting factors. Here we use an individual-based, biophysical model, to disentangle the effects of such factors, namely larval vertical migration, larval growth, larval mortality, adults fecundity, and habitat availability, for the marine gastropod Concholepas concholepas (loco) in Chile. Lower transport success and higher dispersal distances are observed including larval vertical migration in the model. We find an overall decrease in larval transport success to settlement areas from northern to southern Chile. This spatial gradient results from the combination of current direction and intensity, seawater temperature, and available habitat. From our simulated connectivity patterns we then identify subpopulations of loco along the Chilean coast, which could serve as a basis for spatial management of this resource in the future.

  5. Studies on the biological effects of ozone: 10. Release of factors from ozonated human platelets.

    PubMed

    Valacchi, G; Bocci, V

    1999-01-01

    In a previous work we have shown that heparin, in the presence of ozone (O3), promotes a dose-dependent platelet aggregation, while after Ca2+ chelation with citrate, platelet aggregation is almost negligible. These results led us to think that aggregation may enhance the release of platelet components. We have here shown that indeed significantly higher amount of platelet-derived growth factor (PDGF), transforming growth factor beta1 (TGF-beta1) and interleukin-8 (IL-8) are released in a dose-dependent manner after ozonation of heparinised platelet-rich plasma samples. These findings may explain the enhanced healing of torpid ulcers in patients with chronic limb ischemia treated with O3 autohaemoteraphy (O3-AHT).

  6. Studies on the biological effects of ozone: 10. Release of factors from ozonated human platelets.

    PubMed Central

    Valacchi, G; Bocci, V

    1999-01-01

    In a previous work we have shown that heparin, in the presence of ozone (O3), promotes a dose-dependent platelet aggregation, while after Ca2+ chelation with citrate, platelet aggregation is almost negligible. These results led us to think that aggregation may enhance the release of platelet components. We have here shown that indeed significantly higher amount of platelet-derived growth factor (PDGF), transforming growth factor beta1 (TGF-beta1) and interleukin-8 (IL-8) are released in a dose-dependent manner after ozonation of heparinised platelet-rich plasma samples. These findings may explain the enhanced healing of torpid ulcers in patients with chronic limb ischemia treated with O3 autohaemoteraphy (O3-AHT). PMID:10704074

  7. Cosmetics alter biologically-based factors of beauty: evidence from facial contrast.

    PubMed

    Jones, Alex L; Russell, Richard; Ward, Robert

    2015-02-28

    The use of cosmetics by women seems to consistently increase their attractiveness. What factors of attractiveness do cosmetics alter to achieve this? Facial contrast is a known cue to sexual dimorphism and youth, and cosmetics exaggerate sexual dimorphisms in facial contrast. Here, we demonstrate that the luminance contrast pattern of the eyes and eyebrows is consistently sexually dimorphic across a large sample of faces, with females possessing lower brow contrasts than males, and greater eye contrast than males. Red-green and yellow-blue color contrasts were not found to differ consistently between the sexes. We also show that women use cosmetics not only to exaggerate sexual dimorphisms of brow and eye contrasts, but also to increase contrasts that decline with age. These findings refine the notion of facial contrast, and demonstrate how cosmetics can increase attractiveness by manipulating factors of beauty associated with facial contrast.

  8. Prevalence, risk factor analysis, and hematological findings of hemoplasma infection in domestic cats from Valdivia, Southern Chile.

    PubMed

    Walker Vergara, Romina; Morera Galleguillos, Francisco; Gómez Jaramillo, Marcelo; Pereira Almosny, Nadia Regina; Arauna Martínez, Pía; Grob Behne, Paulina; Acosta-Jamett, Gerardo; Müller, Ananda

    2016-06-01

    Four distinct cat hemoplasma species are recognized worldwide. However, this is the first study to investigate the prevalence, risk factors, and hematological findings of hemoplasmas in cats from Chile. Complete blood count and 16S rRNA real-time PCR for cat hemoplasma species were performed in 384 blood samples from domestic cats in Valdivia, Chile. Among the 384 samples the species-specific prevalence was as follows: 'Candidatus Mycoplasma haemominutum' (7.8%), Mycoplasma haemofelis (4.4%), 'Candidatus Mycoplasma turicensis' (1%), 'Ca. M. haemominutum'+M. haemofelis (0.78%), 'Ca. M. haemominutum'+'Ca. M. turicensis' (0.52%), 'Ca. M. haemominutum'+'Candidatus Mycoplasma haematoparvum' (0.26%) and 'Ca. M. haemominutum'+M. haemofelis+'Ca. M. haematoparvum' (0.26%). Male sex, older age, outdoor access, and FIV status were risk factors for hemoplasmosis. Mycoplasma haemofelis-positive cats had higher mean corpuscular volume and monocyte count. Four hemoplasma species circulate in the cat population of Valdivia. 'Candidatus M. turicensis' and 'Ca. M. haematoparvum' have been reported for the first time in Chilean cats.

  9. A systematic review of qualitative findings on factors enabling and deterring uptake of HIV testing in Sub-Saharan Africa

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    Background Despite Sub-Saharan Africa (SSA) being the epicenter of the HIV epidemic, uptake of HIV testing is not optimal. While qualitative studies have been undertaken to investigate factors influencing uptake of HIV testing, systematic reviews to provide a more comprehensive understanding are lacking. Methods Using Noblit and Hare’s meta-ethnography method, we synthesised published qualitative research to understand factors enabling and deterring uptake of HIV testing in SSA. We identified 5,686 citations out of which 56 were selected for full text review and synthesised 42 papers from 13 countries using Malpass’ notion of first-, second-, and third-order constructs. Results The predominant factors enabling uptake of HIV testing are deterioration of physical health and/or death of sexual partner or child. The roll-out of various HIV testing initiatives such as ‘opt-out’ provider-initiated HIV testing and mobile HIV testing has improved uptake of HIV testing by being conveniently available and attenuating fear of HIV-related stigma and financial costs. Other enabling factors are availability of treatment and social network influence and support. Major barriers to uptake of HIV testing comprise perceived low risk of HIV infection, perceived health workers’ inability to maintain confidentiality and fear of HIV-related stigma. While the increasingly wider availability of life-saving treatment in SSA is an incentive to test, the perceived psychological burden of living with HIV inhibits uptake of HIV testing. Other barriers are direct and indirect financial costs of accessing HIV testing, and gender inequality which undermines women’s decision making autonomy about HIV testing. Despite differences across SSA, the findings suggest comparable factors influencing HIV testing. Conclusions Improving uptake of HIV testing requires addressing perception of low risk of HIV infection and perceived inability to live with HIV. There is also a need to continue

  10. Shape changes induced by biologically active peptides and nerve growth factor in blood platelets of rabbits.

    PubMed

    Gudat, F; Laubscher, A; Otten, U; Pletscher, A

    1981-11-01

    1 Nerve growth factor (NGF), substance P (SP) and thymopoietin all caused shape change reactions of rapid onset in rabbit platelets. NGF had the highest maximal effect, and SP the lowest EC50 (concentration causing half maximal shape change). The action of SP was reversible within 5 min, whereas that of NGF lasted for at least 1 h. A series of other peptides were inactive. 2 After preincubation of platelets with SP, a second application of SP no longer caused a shape change reaction, whereas the effect of NGF was not influenced. 3 An oxidized NGF-derivative without biological activity did not cause a shape change reaction, neither did epidermal growth factor. 4 Prostaglandin E1 (PGE1) and pretreatment of the platelets with 3% butanol, which counteract the shape changes caused by 5-hydroxytryptamine (5-HT) and adenosine 3',5'-diphosphate, also antagonized those induced by NGF and SP. Neither heparin nor methysergide, an antagonist of 5-HT-receptors, influenced the shape change induced by NGF or SP. The action of NGF was also antagonized by a specific antibody to NGF. 5 Thymopoietin, like the basic polypeptide polyornithine (mol. wt. 40,000) was not antagonized by PGE1 and butanol. Heparin, which counteracted the effect of polyornithine, did not influence that of thymopoietin. 6 In conclusion, different modes of action are involved in the shape change of blood platelets induced by polypeptides and proteins. SP and NGF may act by stimulating specific membrane receptors.

  11. Modeling post-fledging survival of lark buntings in response to ecological and biological factors

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Yackel Adams, A.A.; Skagen, S.K.; Savidge, J.A.

    2006-01-01

    We evaluated the influences of several ecological, biological, and methodological factors on post-fledging survival of a shortgrass prairie bird, the Lark Bunting (Calamospiza melanocorys). We estimated daily post-fledging survival (n = 206, 82 broods) using radiotelemetry and color bands to track fledglings. Daily survival probabilities were best explained by drought intensity, time in season (quadratic trend), ages a??3 d post-fledging, and rank given drought intensity. Drought intensity had a strong negative effect on survival. Rank was an important predictor of fledgling survival only during the severe drought of 2002 when the smallest fledglings had lower survival. Recently fledged young (ages a??3 d post-fledging) undergoing the transition from nest to surrounding habitat experienced markedly lower survival, demonstrating the vulnerable nature of this time period. Survival was greater in mid and late season than early season, corresponding to our assumptions of food availability. Neither mark type nor sex of attending parent influenced survival. The model-averaged product of the 22-d survival calculated using mean rank and median value of time in season was 0.360 A? 0.08 in 2001 and 0.276 A? 0.08 in 2002. Survival estimates that account for age, condition of young, ecological conditions, and other factors are important for parameterization of realistic population models. Biologists using population growth models to elucidate mechanisms of population declines should attempt to estimate species-specific of post-fledging survival rather than use generalized estimates.

  12. Factoring genetic determinism: An analysis of sociobiological discourse and debate and their presentations in biology textbooks

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Schifellite, Carmen James

    This thesis is about Sociobiology, especially human sociobiological discourse, and its emergence as a paradigm especially through the formulations of E. O. Wilson. It asks two distinct and related questions. The first question asks why and how has the general project of Wilsonian or determinist human sociobiology has maintained its appeal and continued to garner popularity and support despite the many cogent and detailed critiques. The second question, covered in part two of this thesis, asks how the sociobiological controversy is presented in three Biology textbooks. Part one of this work examines the development of human sociobiology and its related disciplines and the debates that have arisen around this paradigm. It chronicles how this Wilsonian human sociobiological discourse constructs its legitimacy, the major issues critics have raised and recent developments in human sociobiology and related fields. It also suggests modified epistemological positions and avenues of critique. As such, this work utilizes theory developed within utilizes theory developed within science studies, hegemony studies, discourse theory, textual analysis, and science education. Part Two examines three textbooks used in Ontario Academic Courses (OAC's) in Biology in high school in grade thirteen in Ontario. These texts are similar if not identical to textbooks used in introductory biology courses in universities in North America. This textual analysis, examines how the textbooks portray sociobiology and the related fields of Genetics, Evolutionary theory and the Nature of Science itself. This analysis provides a way both to gauge the influence of Wilsonian human and non-human sociobiological discourse and to gauge the ways in which this controversial issue is handled by the texts. This analysis finds that all three textbooks fail to use sociobiology as an example of a scientific controversy to engage students in a discussion of this topic. They also fail to engage students in any of

  13. Biological activity in Technosols as a key factor of their structure

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Watteau, Françoise; Villemin, Geneviève; Bouchard, Adeline; Monserié, Marie-France; Séré, Geoffroy; Schwartz, Christophe; Morel, Jean-Louis

    2010-05-01

    )availability. HAP also contributed to the aggregation of technogenic constituents in Technosol 1. The biological activity generated by the presence of exogenous organic matter is thus in short (0-2 years) and mean (30 years) terms, a key factor of the structuration and by there of the pedogenesis of Technosols.

  14. The association of non-accidental trauma with historical factors, exam findings and diagnostic testing during the initial trauma evaluation.

    PubMed

    Escobar, Mauricio A; Auerbach, Marc; Flynn-O'Brien, Katherine; Tiyyagura, Gunjan; Borgman, Matthew A; Duffy, Susan J; Falcone, Kelly; Burke, Rita; Cox, John M; Maguire, Sabine

    2017-03-23

    Early identification of non-accidental trauma (NAT) is a critical component of pediatric trauma care. Literature searches were conducted related to the association of NAT with seven key areas: history, exam findings (burns, oral trauma, bruising) and imaging (fractures, abdominal and brain injuries). When available, odds ratios (OR) with 95% confidence intervals (CI) for associations with NAT are presented. Systematic reviews have been published in six of the seven key areas and are described. The operational definition of NAT was widely variable across studies, prohibiting meta-analysis. Select highly associated findings included bruising in a pre-mobile child, clustering of bruises (OR 4.0, CI 2.5-6.4), petechiae (OR 9.3, CI 2.9-30.2), chemical burns 24.6 (4.94-135); contact burns 5.2 (1.6-22.9); scald burns 17.4 (6.4-72), burns to hand 1.8 (1.3-2.6), feet 6.3 (4.6-8.6), buttocks 3.1 (2.2-4.5), and perineum 2.5 (1.7-3.7), subdural hematoma (OR 8.2, 6.1-11), hypoxic ischemic injury (OR 4.2, CI 0.6-2.7), and retinal hemorrhages (OR 14.7, CI 6.4 to 33.6) among others. Of note, hollow viscus injuries, particularly duodenal injuries in children < 4 years were indicative of NAT. While there is substantial research on factors associated with NAT, future work is needed to standardize the definition of NAT for investigation and practice, such that evidence-based guidelines can be created to inform trauma providers when a comprehensive NAT evaluation is indicated.

  15. Important factors in predicting mortality outcome from stroke: findings from the Anglia Stroke Clinical Network Evaluation Study

    PubMed Central

    O. Bachmann, Max; Loke, Yoon Kong; D. Musgrave, Stanley; Price, Gill M.; Hale, Rachel; Metcalf, Anthony Kneale; Turner, David A.; Day, Diana J.; A. Warburton, Elizabeth; Potter, John F.

    2017-01-01

    Abstract Background although variation in stroke service provision and outcomes have been previously investigated, it is less well known what service characteristics are associated with reduced short- and medium-term mortality. Methods data from a prospective multicentre study (2009–12) in eight acute regional NHS trusts with a catchment population of about 2.6 million were used to examine the prognostic value of patient-related factors and service characteristics on stroke mortality outcome at 7, 30 and 365 days post stroke, and time to death within 1 year. Results a total of 2,388 acute stroke patients (mean (standard deviation) 76.9 (12.7) years; 47.3% men, 87% ischaemic stroke) were included in the study. Among patients characteristics examined increasing age, haemorrhagic stroke, total anterior circulation stroke type, higher prestroke frailty, history of hypertension and ischaemic heart disease and admission hyperglycaemia predicted 1-year mortality. Additional inclusion of stroke service characteristics controlling for patient and service level characteristics showed varying prognostic impact of service characteristics on stroke mortality over the disease course during first year after stroke at different time points. The most consistent finding was the benefit of higher nursing levels; an increase in one trained nurses per 10 beds was associated with reductions in 30-day mortality of 11–28% (P < 0.0001) and in 1-year mortality of 8–12% (P < 0.001). Conclusions there appears to be consistent and robust evidence of direct clinical benefit on mortality up to 1 year after acute stroke of higher numbers of trained nursing staff over and above that of other recognised mortality risk factors. PMID:28181626

  16. Dairy food intake is positively associated with cardiovascular health: findings from Observation of Cardiovascular Risk Factors in Luxembourg study.

    PubMed

    Crichton, Georgina E; Alkerwi, Ala'a

    2014-12-01

    Conflicting findings have been reported about dairy food consumption and risk for cardiovascular disease. Furthermore, few studies have examined dairy food intake in relation to cardiovascular health and the incorporation of lifestyle factors such as diet and physical activity. This study examined whether dairy food consumption was associated with cardiovascular health, recently defined by the American Heart Association. Data were analyzed from 1352 participants from the Observation of Cardiovascular Risk Factors in Luxembourg survey. A validated food frequency questionnaire was used to measure intakes of milk, yogurt, cheese, dairy desserts, ice cream, and butter. Seven cardiovascular health metrics were assessed: smoking, body mass index, physical activity, diet, total cholesterol, blood pressure, and fasting plasma glucose. A total cardiovascular health score (CHS) was determined by summing the total number of health metrics at ideal levels. It was hypothesized that greater dairy food consumption (both low fat and whole fat) would be associated with better global cardiovascular health, as indicated by a higher CHS. Total dairy food intake was positively associated with the CHS. Higher intakes of whole fat milk, yogurt, and cheese were associated with better cardiovascular health. Even when controlling for demographic and dietary variables, those who consumed at least 5 servings per week of these dairy products had a significantly higher CHS than those who consumed these products less frequently. Higher total whole fat dairy food intake was also associated with other positive health behaviors, including being a nonsmoker, consuming the suggested dietary intakes of recommended foods, and having a normal body mass index. Increased dairy food consumption was associated with better cardiovascular health.

  17. Biological and physical factors controlling aggregate stability under different climatic conditions in Southern Spain.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ángel Gabarrón-Galeote, Miguel; Damián Ruiz-Sinoga, Jose; Francisco Martinez-Murillo, Juan; Lavee, Hanoch

    2013-04-01

    Soil aggregation is a key factor determining the soil structure. The presence of stable aggregates is essential to maintain a good soil structure, that in turn plays an important role in sustaining agricultural productivity and preserving environmental quality. A wide range of physical and biological soil components are involved in the aggregate formation and stabilization, namely clay mineral content; the quantity and quality of organic matter, that can be derived from plants, fungal hyphae, microorganism and soil animals; and the soil water content. Climatic conditions, through their effect on soil water content, vegetation cover and organic matter content, are supposed to affect soil aggregation. Thus the main objective of this research is to analyse the effect of organic matter, clay content and soil water content on aggregate stability along a climatic transect in Southern Spain. This study was conducted in four catchments along a pluviometric gradient in the South of Spain (rainfall depth decreases from west to east from more than 1000 mm year-1 to less than 300 mm year-1) and was based on a methodology approximating the climatic gradient in Mediterranean conditions. The selected sites shared similar conditions of geology, topography and soil use, which allowed making comparisons among them and relating the differences to the pluviometric conditions. In February 2007, 250 disturbed and undisturbed samples from the first 5cm of the soil were collected along the transect. We measured the aggregate stability, organic matter, clay content and bulk density of every sample. In the field we measured rainfall, air temperature, relative humidity, wind speed, wind direction, solar radiation, potential evapotranspiration, soil water content, vegetation cover and presence of litter. Our results suggest that aggregate stability is a property determined by a great number of highly variable factors, which can make extremely difficult to predict its behavior taking in

  18. Key Findings from Preclinical and Clinical Drug Interaction Studies Presented in New Drug and Biological License Applications Approved by the Food and Drug Administration in 2014.

    PubMed

    Yu, Jingjing; Ritchie, Tasha K; Zhou, Zhu; Ragueneau-Majlessi, Isabelle

    2016-01-01

    Regulatory approval documents contain valuable information, often not published, to assess the drug-drug interaction (DDI) profile of newly marketed drugs. This analysis aimed to systematically review all drug metabolism, transport, pharmacokinetics, and DDI data available in the new drug applications and biologic license applications approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration in 2014, using the University of Washington Drug Interaction Database, and to highlight the significant findings. Among the 30 new drug applications and 11 biologic license applications reviewed, 35 new molecular entities (NMEs) were well characterized with regard to drug metabolism, transport, and/or organ impairment and were fully analyzed in this review. In vitro, a majority of the NMEs were found to be substrates or inhibitors/inducers of at least one drug metabolizing enzyme or transporter. In vivo, when NMEs were considered as victim drugs, 16 NMEs had at least one in vivo DDI study with a clinically significant change in exposure (area under the time-plasma concentration curve or Cmax ratio ≥2 or ≤0.5), with 6 NMEs shown to be sensitive substrates of cytochrome P450 enzymes (area under the time-plasma concentration curve ratio ≥5 when coadministered with potent inhibitors): paritaprevir and naloxegol (CYP3A), eliglustat (CYP2D6), dasabuvir (CYP2C8), and tasimelteon and pirfenidone (CYP1A2). As perpetrators, seven NMEs showed clinically significant inhibition involving both enzymes and transporters, although no clinically significant induction was observed. Physiologically based pharmacokinetic modeling and pharmacogenetics studies were used for six and four NMEs, respectively, to optimize dosing recommendations in special populations and/or multiple impairment situations. In addition, the pharmacokinetic evaluations in patients with hepatic or renal impairment provided useful quantitative information to support drug administration in these fragile populations.

  19. Factors influencing legacy pollutant accumulation in alpine osprey: biology, topography, or melting glaciers?

    PubMed

    Elliott, John E; Levac, Joshua; Guigueno, Mélanie F; Shaw, D Patrick; Wayland, Mark; Morrissey, Christy A; Muir, Derek C G; Elliott, Kyle H

    2012-09-04

    Persistent organic pollutants (POPs) can be transported long distances and deposited into alpine environments via cold trapping and snow scavenging processes. Here we examined biotic and abiotic factors determining contaminant variability of wildlife in alpine ecosystems. We measured POPs in eggs and plasma of an apex predator, the osprey (Pandion haliaetus) breeding in 15 mountainous watersheds across a broad latitudinal, longitudinal and altitudinal range in western Canada. After accounting for proximate biotic factors such as trophic level (δ(15)N) and carbon source (δ(13)C), variability in contaminant concentrations, including ΣDDT (sum of trichlorodiphenylethane-related compounds), toxaphene, hexachlorobenzene (HCB), total chlordane, and ΣPCBs (polychlorinated biphenyls) in osprey tissues was explained by interactions among relative size of watersheds, water bodies, elevation, and glacial input. ΣDDT in nestling plasma, for example, decreased with lake elevation, probably as a result of local past inputs from agricultural or public health usage at lower altitude sites. In contrast, toxaphene, never used as an insecticide in western Canada, increased with elevation and year-round snow and ice cover in both plasma and eggs, indicating long-range atmospheric sources as dominant for toxaphene. Lower chlorinated PCBs in plasma tended to decrease with elevation and ice cover consistent with published data and model outcomes. Temporal trends of POPs in osprey eggs are coincident with some modeled predictions of release from melting glaciers due to climate change. Currently we suggest that contaminants largely are released through annual snowpack melt and deposited in large lower elevation lakes, or some smaller lakes with poor drainage. Our study highlights the importance of understanding how biological processes integrate physical when studying the environmental chemistry of wildlife.

  20. Environmental factors influencing biological rhythms in newborns: From neonatal intensive care units to home.

    PubMed

    Bueno, Clarissa; Menna-Barreto, Luiz

    2016-01-01

    Photic and non-photic environmental factors are suggested to modulate the development of circadian rhythms in infants. Our aim is to evaluate the development of biological rhythms (circadian or ultradian) in newborns in transition from Neonatal Intensive Care Units (NICU) to home and along the first 6 months of life, to identify masking and entraining environment factors along development. Ten newborns were evaluated in their last week inside the NICU and in the first week after being delivered home; 6 babies were also followed until 6 months of corrected age. Activity, recorded with actimeters, wrist temperature and observed sleep and feeding behavior were recorded continuously along their last week inside the NICU and in the first week at home and also until 6 months of corrected age for the subjects who remained in the study. Sleep/wake and activity/rest cycle showed ultradian patterns and the sleep/wake was strongly influenced by the 3 h feeding schedule inside the NICU, while wrist temperature showed a circadian pattern that seemed no to be affected by environmental cycles. A circadian rhythm emerges for sleep/wake behavior in the first week at home, whereas the 3 h period vanishes. Both activity/rest and wrist temperature presented a sudden increase in the contribution of the circadian component immediately after babies were delivered home, also suggesting a masking effect of the NICU environment. We found a positive correlation of postconceptional age and the increase in the daily component of activity and temperature along the following 6 months, while feeding behavior became arrhythmic.

  1. Streptococcus gallolyticus infection in colorectal cancer and association with biological and clinical factors

    PubMed Central

    Andres-Franch, Maria; Galiana, Antonio; Sanchez-Hellin, Victoria; Ochoa, Enrique; Hernandez-Illan, Eva; Lopez-Garcia, Pilar; Castillejo, Adela; Castillejo, Maria Isabel; Barbera, Victor Manuel; Garcia-Dura, Josefa; Gomez-Romero, Francisco Javier; Royo, Gloria; Soto, Jose Luis

    2017-01-01

    There is an unambiguous association of Streptococcus gallolyticus infection with colorectal cancer, although there is limited information about epidemiology or interaction between molecular and environmental factors. We performed an original quantitative analysis of S. gallolyticus in unselected colorectal cancer patients (n = 190) and their association with clinical, pathological tumor molecular profiles (microsatellite instability, hypermethylator phenotype and chromosomal instability pathways), and other biological factors in colorectal tumor and normal tissues (cytomegalovirus and Epstein-Barr virus infection). We developed a new quantitative method to assess bacterial load. Analytical validation was reached with a very high sensitivity and specificity. Our results showed a 3.2% prevalence of S. gallolyticus infection in our unselected cohort of colorectal cancer cases (6/190). The average S. gallolyticus copy number was 7,018 (range 44–34,585). No previous reports relating to S. gallolyticus infection have been published for unselected cohorts of patients. Finally, and despite a low prevalence of S. gallolyticus in this study, we were able to define a specific association with tumor tissue (p = 0.03) and with coinfection with Epstein-Barr virus (p = 0.042; OR: 9.49; 95% IC: 1.1–82.9). The prevalence data provided will be very useful in the design of future studies, and will make it possible to estimate the sample size needed to assess precise objectives. In conclusion, our results show a low prevalence of S. gallolyticus infection in unselected colorectal cancer patients and an association of positive S. gallolyticus infection with tumor tissue and Epstein-Barr virus coinfection. Further studies will be needed to definitively assess the prevalence of S. gallolyticus in colorectal cancer and the associated clinicopathological and molecular profiles. PMID:28355283

  2. Childhood maltreatment as a risk factor for COPD: findings from a population-based survey of Canadian adults

    PubMed Central

    Shields, Margot E; Hovdestad, Wendy E; Gilbert, Charles P; Tonmyr, Lil E

    2016-01-01

    Objective The aim of this study was to examine the associations between childhood maltreatment (CM) and COPD in adulthood. Methods Data were from 15,902 respondents to the 2012 Canadian Community Health Survey – Mental Health. Multiple logistic regression models were used to examine associations between CM and COPD and the role of smoking and mental and substance use variables as mediators in associations. Results COPD in adulthood was related to CM, with associations differing by sex. Among females, COPD was related to childhood physical abuse (CPA), childhood sexual abuse, and childhood exposure to intimate partner violence, but in the fully adjusted models, the association with CPA did not persist. Among males, COPD was related to childhood exposure to intimate partner violence and severe and frequent CPA, but these associations did not persist in the fully adjusted models. Conclusion Results from this study establish CM as a risk factor for COPD in adulthood. A large part of the association is attributable to cigarette smoking, particularly for males. These findings underscore the importance of interventions to prevent CM as well as programs to assist victims of CM in dealing with tobacco addiction. PMID:27822027

  3. New Findings in eNOS gene and Thalidomide Embryopathy Suggest pre-transcriptional effect variants as susceptibility factors.

    PubMed

    Kowalski, Thayne Woycinck; Fraga, Lucas Rosa; Tovo-Rodrigues, Luciana; Sanseverino, Maria Teresa Vieira; Hutz, Mara Helena; Schuler-Faccini, Lavínia; Vianna, Fernanda Sales Luiz

    2016-03-23

    Antiangiogenic properties of thalidomide have created an interest in the use of the drug in treatment of cancer. However, thalidomide is responsible for thalidomide embryopathy (TE). A lack of knowledge regarding the mechanisms of thalidomide teratogenesis acts as a barrier in the aim to synthesize a safer analogue of thalidomide. Recently, our group detected a higher frequency of alleles that impair the pro-angiogenic mechanisms of endothelial nitric oxide synthase (eNOS), coded by the NOS3 gene. In this study we evaluated variable number tandem repeats (VNTR) functional polymorphism in intron 4 of NOS3 in individuals with TE (38) and Brazilians without congenital anomalies (136). Haplotypes were estimated for this VNTR with previously analyzed polymorphisms, rs2070744 (-786C > T) and rs1799983 (894T > G), in promoter region and exon 7, respectively. Haplotypic distribution was different between the groups (p = 0.007). Alleles -786C (rs2070744) and 4b (VNTR), associated with decreased NOS3 expression, presented in higher frequency in TE individuals (p = 0.018; OR = 2.57; IC = 1.2-5.8). This association was not identified with polymorphism 894T > G (p = 0.079), which influences eNOS enzymatic activity. These results suggest variants in NOS3, with pre-transcriptional effects as susceptibility factors, influencing the risk TE development. This finding generates insight for a new approach to research that pursues a safer analogue.

  4. The Burden and Determinants of Non Communicable Diseases Risk Factors in Nepal: Findings from a Nationwide STEPS Survey

    PubMed Central

    Neupane, Sushhama; Vaidya, Abhinav; Dhimal, Meghnath; Dhakal, Purushottam; Rana, Sangeeta; Bhusal, Chop Lal; Lohani, Guna Raj; Paulin, Frank Herbert; Garg, Renu Madanlal; Guthold, Regina; Cowan, Melanie; Riley, Leanne Margaret; Karki, Khem Bahadur

    2015-01-01

    Background World Health Organization (WHO) estimates for deaths attributed to Non Communicable Diseases (NCDs) in Nepal have risen from 51% in 2010 to 60% in 2014. This study assessed the distribution and determinants of NCD risk factors among the Nepalese adult population. Methods and Findings A nationally representative cross-sectional survey was conducted from Jan to June 2013 on the prevalence of NCD risk factors using the WHO NCD STEPS instrument. A multistage cluster sampling method was used to randomly select the 4,200 respondents. The adjusted prevalence ratio (APR) was used to assess the determinants of NCD risk factors using a Poisson regression model. The prevalence of current smoking (last 30 days) was 19% (95%CI:16.6-20.6), and harmful alcohol consumption (≥60 g of pure alcohol for men and ≥40 g of pure alcohol for women on an average day) was 2% (95%CI:1.4-2.9). Almost all (99%, 95%CI:98.3-99.3) of the respondents consumed less than five servings of fruits and vegetables combined on an average day and 3% (95%CI:2.7-4.3) had low physical activity. Around 21% (95%CI:19.3-23.7) were overweight or obese (BMI≥25). The prevalence of raised blood pressure (SBP≥140 mm of Hg or DBP≥90 mm of Hg) and raised blood glucose (fasting blood glucose ≥126 mg/dl), including those on medication were 26% (95%CI:23.6-28.0) and 4% (95%CI:2.9-4.5) respectively. Almost one quarter of respondents, 23% (95%CI:20.5-24.9), had raised total cholesterol (total cholesterol ≥190 mg/dl or under current medication for raised cholesterol). he study revealed a lower prevalence of smoking among women than men (APR:0.30; 95%CI:0.25-0.36), and in those who had higher education levels compared to those with no formal education (APR:0.39; 95%CI:0.26-0.58). Harmful alcohol use was also lower in women than men (APR:0.26; 95%CI:0.14-0.48), and in Terai residents compared to hill residents (APR:0.16; 95%CI:0.07-0.36). Physical inactivity was lower among women than men (APR:0.55; 95

  5. Characterization of the action of epidermal growth factor in three different biological systems

    SciTech Connect

    Woost, P.G.

    1986-01-01

    In general, these studies characterized in each system one or more of the following aspects of EGF's biological action: EGF binding, EGF-induced phosphorylation, or EGF-stimulated DNA synthesis. In human corneal fibroblasts (HCF), EGF binds to specific, saturable, high affinity receptors and stimulated (/sup 3/H)-thymidine incorporation, and in vitro measurement of DNA synthesis, approximately 2.5 fold above control cultures, with maximal stimulation occurring at approximately 1 nM EGF. In addition, fibroblasts growth factor (FGF) and insulin stimulated maximal (/sup 3/H)-thymidine incorporation in HCF at approximately 100 ng ml/sup -1/ and 1 nM, respectively. In combination with dexamethasone (5 nM), the stimulation of (/sup 3/H)-thymidine incorporation by EGF was maintained. However, dexamethasone abolished the stimulatory action of FGF. Highly purified preparations of human placental outer cell membranes and intracellular organelles were assayed for functional EGF binding proteins (EGF-receptors). Functionality of a protein was determined by covalent labeling with (/sup 125/I)-EGF and EGF-stimulated autophosphorylation.

  6. Relationship between biological factors and catastrophizing and clinical outcomes for female patients with knee osteoarthritis

    PubMed Central

    Ikemoto, Tatsunori; Miyagawa, Hirofumi; Shiro, Yukiko; Arai, Young-Chang Park; Akao, Machiko; Murotani, Kenta; Ushida, Takahiro; Deie, Masataka

    2017-01-01

    AIM To investigate the correlations between clinical outcomes and biopsychological variables in female patients with knee osteoarthritis (OA). METHODS Seventy-seven patients with symptomatic knee OA were enrolled in this study. We investigated the age, body mass index (BMI), pain catastrophizing scale (PCS) and radiographic severity of bilateral knees using a Kellgren-Lawrence (K-L) grading system of the subjects. Subsequently, a multiple linear regression was conducted to determine which variables best correlated with main outcomes of knee OA, which were pain severity, moving capacity by measuring timed-up-and-go test and Japanese Knee Osteoarthritis Measure (JKOM). RESULTS We found that the significant contributor to pain severity was PCS (β = 0.555) and BMI (β = 0.239), to moving capacity was K-L grade (β = 0.520) and to PCS (β = 0.313), and to a JKOM score was PCS (β = 0.485) and K-L grade (β = 0.421), respectively. CONCLUSION The results suggest that pain catastrophizing as well as biological factors were associated with clinical outcomes in female patients with knee OA, irrespective of radiographic severity. PMID:28361021

  7. Circumventing furin enhances factor VIII biological activity and ameliorates bleeding phenotypes in hemophilia models

    PubMed Central

    Siner, Joshua I.; Samelson-Jones, Benjamin J.; Crudele, Julie M.; French, Robert A.; Lee, Benjamin J.; Zhou, Shanzhen; Merricks, Elizabeth; Raymer, Robin; Camire, Rodney M.; Arruda, Valder R.

    2016-01-01

    Processing by the proprotein convertase furin is believed to be critical for the biological activity of multiple proteins involved in hemostasis, including coagulation factor VIII (FVIII). This belief prompted the retention of the furin recognition motif (amino acids 1645–1648) in the design of B-domain–deleted FVIII (FVIII-BDD) products in current clinical use and in the drug development pipeline, as well as in experimental FVIII gene therapy strategies. Here, we report that processing by furin is in fact deleterious to FVIII-BDD secretion and procoagulant activity. Inhibition of furin increases the secretion and decreases the intracellular retention of FVIII-BDD protein in mammalian cells. Our new variant (FVIII-ΔF), in which this recognition motif is removed, efficiently circumvents furin. FVIII-ΔF demonstrates increased recombinant protein yields, enhanced clotting activity, and higher circulating FVIII levels after adeno-associated viral vector–based liver gene therapy in a murine model of severe hemophilia A (HA) compared with FVIII-BDD. Moreover, we observed an amelioration of the bleeding phenotype in severe HA dogs with sustained therapeutic FVIII levels after FVIII-ΔF gene therapy at a lower vector dose than previously employed in this model. The immunogenicity of FVIII-ΔF did not differ from that of FVIII-BDD as a protein or a gene therapeutic. Thus, contrary to previous suppositions, FVIII variants that can avoid furin processing are likely to have enhanced translational potential for HA therapy. PMID:27734034

  8. Factors associated with computer and Internet technology implementation in biology, chemistry, and physics education in Turkish secondary schools

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ozer, Melike

    The main purposes of the research were to identify computer and Internet use by biology, chemistry and physics teachers in Turkish secondary schools and identify factors associated with computer and Internet technology. To this end, survey documents were sent by the Provincial Directorate of National Education to 250 selected schools' administrators for further distribution. Administrators were asked to complete the "Computer and Internet Use: School Survey," and to distribute the "Science Teacher Computer and Internet Use" surveys to the two teachers who teach science class. Surveys were then returned to the General Directorate of Educational Technologies. Research findings showed that computer and Internet use has not occurred effectively. Computers were first introduced to Turkish schools in 1984; unfortunately the current situation of computer and Internet use in science education is not at the projected earlier point in time. Considering the fact that science teachers' participation in technology-related professional development program is higher than other subject teachers, the use of computer and Internet technologies in Turkish secondary schools is still at its early stages. Lack of computer knowledge and not knowing how to integrate computers into education were the major factors reported. With regard to computer and Internet use, a regression model for Turkish schools, which includes access and knowledge, explains a large part of the variance in study results. There was a significant relationship between computer attitude (computer liking, usefulness, and confidence) and computer and Internet use. Although there was a significant negative relationship between Internet and computer uses and the attitudinal component, computer anxiety, it did not deter individuals from expressing a desire to engage in computer use in education.

  9. Behavioral, Biological, and Demographic Risk and Protective Factors for New HIV Infections among Youth, Rakai, Uganda

    PubMed Central

    Santelli, John S.; Edelstein, Zoe R.; Mathur, Sanyukta; Wei, Ying; Zhang, Wenfei; Orr, Mark G.; Higgins, Jenny A.; Nalugoda, Fred; Gray, Ron H.; Wawer, Maria J.; Serwadda, David M.

    2013-01-01

    Background Prevalence of HIV infection is considerable among youth, although data on risk factors for new (incident) infections is limited. We examined incidence of HIV infection and risk and protective factors among youth in rural Uganda, including the role of gender and social transitions. Methods Participants were sexually experienced youth (15–24 years-old) enrolled in the Rakai Community Cohort Study,1999–2008 (n=6741). Poisson regression with robust standard errors was used to estimate incident rate ratios (IRR) and 95% confidence intervals (CI) of incident HIV infection. Results HIV incidence was greater among young women than young men (14.1 vs. 8.3 per 1000 person-years, respectively); this gender disparity was greater among teens (14.9 vs. 3.6). Beyond behavioral (multiple partners and concurrency) and biological factors (sexually transmitted infection (STI) symptoms), social transitions such as marriage and staying in school influenced HIV risk. In multivariate analyses among women, HIV incidence was associated with living in a trading village [adjusted IRR (aIRR) = 1.48; 95% CI: 1.04 to 2.11], being a student (aIRR = 0.22; 95% CI: 0.07 to 0.72), current marriage (aIRR = 0.55; 95% CI: 0.37 to 0.81), former marriage (aIRR = 1.73; 95% CI: 1.01 to 2.96), having multiple partners, and sexually transmitted infection symptoms. Among men, new infections were associated with former marriage (aIRR = 5.57; 95% CI: 2.51 to 12.36), genital ulceration (aIRR = 3.56; 95% CI: 1.97 to 6.41), and alcohol use (aIRR = 2.08; 95% CI: 1.15 to 3.77). Conclusions During the third decade of the HIV epidemic in Uganda, HIV incidence remains considerable among youth, with young women particularly at risk. The risk for new infections was strongly shaped by social transitions such as leaving school, entrance into marriage, and marital dissolution; the impact of marriage was different for young men than women. PMID:23535293

  10. Evaluation of the biological differences of canine and human factor VIII in gene delivery: Implications in human hemophilia treatment

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    The canine is the most important large animal model for testing novel hemophilia A(HA) treatment. It is often necessary to use canine factor VIII (cFIII) gene or protein for the evaluation of HA treatment in the canine model. However, the different biological properties between cFVIII and human FVII...

  11. Critical-Thinking Grudge Match: Biology vs. Chemistry--Examining Factors That Affect Thinking Skill in Nonmajors Science

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Quitadamo, Ian J.; Kurtz, Martha J.; Cornell, Caitlyn Nicole; Griffith, Lindsay; Hancock, Julie; Egbert, Brandi

    2011-01-01

    Chemistry students appear to bring significantly higher critical-thinking skill to their nonmajors course than do biology students. Knowing student preconceptions and thinking ability is essential to learning growth and effective teaching. Of the factors investigated, ethnicity and high school physics had the largest impact on critical-thinking…

  12. Meat science and muscle biology symposium: In utero factors that influence postnatal muscle growth, carcass composition, and meat quality

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    The Meat Science and Muscle Biology Symposium titled “In utero factors that influence postnatal muscle growth, carcass composition, and meat quality” was held at the Joint Annual Meeting in Phoenix, AZ, July 15 to 19, 2012. The goal of this symposium was to highlight research on the impact of fetal...

  13. The Adult Learning Open University Determinants (ALOUD) Study: Biological and Psychological Factors Associated with Learning Performance in Adult Distance Education

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Neroni, Joyce; Gijselaers, Hieronymus J. M.; Kirschner, Paul A.; Groot, Renate H. M.

    2015-01-01

    Learning is crucial for everyone. The association between biological (eg, sleep, nutrition) and psychological factors (eg, test anxiety, goal orientation) and learning performance has been well established for children, adolescents and college students in traditional education. Evidence for these associations for adult distance students is lacking…

  14. [Mechanisms underlying physiological functions of food factors via non-specific interactions with biological proteins].

    PubMed

    Murakami, Akira

    2015-01-01

      We previously reported that zerumbone, a sesquiterpene found in Zingiber zerumbet SMITH, showed notable cancer preventive effects in various organs of experimental rodents. This agent up-regulated nuclear factor-E2-related factor (Nrf2)-dependent expressions of anti-oxidative and xenobiotics-metabolizing enzymes, leading to an increased self-defense capacity. On the other hand, zerumbone markedly suppressed the expression of cyclooxygenase-2, an inducible pro-inflammatory enzyme, by disrupting mRNA stabilizing processes. Binding experiments using a biotin derivative of zerumbone demonstrated that Keap1, an Nrf2 repressive protein, is one of its major binding proteins that promotes their dissociation for inducing Nrf2 transactivation. We then generated a specific antibody against zerumbone-modified proteins and found that zerumbone modified numerous cellular proteins in a non-specific manner, with global distribution of the modified proteins seen not only in cytoplasm but also the nucleus. Based on those observations, zerumbone was speculated to cause proteo-stress, a notion supported by previous findings that it increased the C-terminus of Hsc70 interacting protein-dependent protein ubiquitination and also promoted aggresome formation. Interestingly, zerumbone counteracted proteo-stress and heat stress via up-regulation of the protein quality control systems (PQCs), e.g., heat shock proteins (HSPs), ubiquitin-proteasome, and autophagy. Meanwhile, several phytochemicals, including ursolic acid and curcumin, were identified as marked HSP70 inducers, whereas most nutrients tested were scarcely active. Recent studies have revealed that PQCs play important roles in the prevention of many lifestyle related diseases, such as cancer, thus non-specific binding of phytochemicals to cellular proteins may be a novel and unique mechanism underlying their physiological activities.

  15. New Findings in eNOS gene and Thalidomide Embryopathy Suggest pre-transcriptional effect variants as susceptibility factors

    PubMed Central

    Kowalski, Thayne Woycinck; Fraga, Lucas Rosa; Tovo-Rodrigues, Luciana; Sanseverino, Maria Teresa Vieira; Hutz, Mara Helena; Schuler-Faccini, Lavínia; Vianna, Fernanda Sales Luiz

    2016-01-01

    Antiangiogenic properties of thalidomide have created an interest in the use of the drug in treatment of cancer. However, thalidomide is responsible for thalidomide embryopathy (TE). A lack of knowledge regarding the mechanisms of thalidomide teratogenesis acts as a barrier in the aim to synthesize a safer analogue of thalidomide. Recently, our group detected a higher frequency of alleles that impair the pro-angiogenic mechanisms of endothelial nitric oxide synthase (eNOS), coded by the NOS3 gene. In this study we evaluated variable number tandem repeats (VNTR) functional polymorphism in intron 4 of NOS3 in individuals with TE (38) and Brazilians without congenital anomalies (136). Haplotypes were estimated for this VNTR with previously analyzed polymorphisms, rs2070744 (−786C > T) and rs1799983 (894T > G), in promoter region and exon 7, respectively. Haplotypic distribution was different between the groups (p = 0.007). Alleles −786C (rs2070744) and 4b (VNTR), associated with decreased NOS3 expression, presented in higher frequency in TE individuals (p = 0.018; OR = 2.57; IC = 1.2–5.8). This association was not identified with polymorphism 894T > G (p = 0.079), which influences eNOS enzymatic activity. These results suggest variants in NOS3, with pre-transcriptional effects as susceptibility factors, influencing the risk TE development. This finding generates insight for a new approach to research that pursues a safer analogue. PMID:27004986

  16. Quantifying the contributions of behavioral and biological risk factors to socioeconomic disparities in coronary heart disease incidence: the MORGEN study.

    PubMed

    Kershaw, Kiarri N; Droomers, Mariël; Robinson, Whitney R; Carnethon, Mercedes R; Daviglus, Martha L; Monique Verschuren, W M

    2013-10-01

    Quantifying the impact of different modifiable behavioral and biological risk factors on socioeconomic disparities in coronary heart disease (CHD) may help inform targeted, population-specific strategies to reduce the unequal distribution of the disease. Previous studies have used analytic approaches that limit our ability to disentangle the relative contributions of these risk factors to CHD disparities. The goal of this study was to assess mediation of the effect of low education on incident CHD by multiple risk factors simultaneously. Analyses are based on 15,067 participants of the Dutch Monitoring Project on Risk Factors for Chronic Diseases aged 20-65 years examined 1994-1997 and followed for events until January 1, 2008. Path analysis was used to quantify and test mediation of the low education-CHD association by behavioral (current cigarette smoking, heavy alcohol use, poor diet, and physical inactivity) and biological (obesity, hypertension, diabetes, and hypercholesterolemia) risk factors. Behavioral and biological risk factors accounted for 56.6 % (95 % CI 42.6-70.8 %) of the low education-incident CHD association. Smoking was the strongest mediator, accounting for 27.3 % (95 % CI 17.7-37.4 %) of the association, followed by obesity (10.2 %; 95 % CI 4.5-16.1 %), physical inactivity (6.3 %; 95 % CI 2.7-10.0 %), and hypertension (5.3 %; 95 % CI: 2.8-8.0 %). In summary, in a Dutch cohort, the majority of the relationship between low education and incident CHD was mediated by traditional behavioral and biological risk factors. Addressing barriers to smoking cessation, blood pressure and weight management, and physical activity may be the most effective approaches to eliminating socioeconomic inequalities in CHD.

  17. Biological and analytical variations of 16 parameters related to coagulation screening tests and the activity of coagulation factors.

    PubMed

    Chen, Qian; Shou, Weiling; Wu, Wei; Guo, Ye; Zhang, Yujuan; Huang, Chunmei; Cui, Wei

    2015-04-01

    To accurately estimate longitudinal changes in individuals, it is important to take into consideration the biological variability of the measurement. The few studies available on the biological variations of coagulation parameters are mostly outdated. We confirmed the published results using modern, fully automated methods. Furthermore, we added data for additional coagulation parameters. At 8:00 am, 12:00 pm, and 4:00 pm on days 1, 3, and 5, venous blood was collected from 31 healthy volunteers. A total of 16 parameters related to coagulation screening tests as well as the activity of coagulation factors were analyzed; these included prothrombin time, fibrinogen (Fbg), activated partial thromboplastin time, thrombin time, international normalized ratio, prothrombin time activity, activated partial thromboplastin time ratio, fibrin(-ogen) degradation products, as well as the activity of factor II, factor V, factor VII, factor VIII, factor IX, and factor X. All intraindividual coefficients of variation (CVI) values for the parameters of the screening tests (except Fbg) were less than 5%. Conversely, the CVI values for the activity of coagulation factors were all greater than 5%. In addition, we calculated the reference change value to determine whether a significant difference exists between two test results from the same individual.

  18. Model-Based Analysis of the Role of Biological, Hydrological and Geochemical Factors Affecting Uranium Bioremediation

    SciTech Connect

    Zhao, Jiao; Scheibe, Timothy D.; Mahadevan, Radhakrishnan

    2011-01-24

    Uranium contamination is a serious concern at several sites motivating the development of novel treatment strategies such as the Geobacter-mediated reductive immobilization of uranium. However, this bioremediation strategy has not yet been optimized for the sustained uranium removal. While several reactive-transport models have been developed to represent Geobacter-mediated bioremediation of uranium, these models often lack the detailed quantitative description of the microbial process (e.g., biomass build-up in both groundwater and sediments, electron transport system, etc.) and the interaction between biogeochemical and hydrological process. In this study, a novel multi-scale model was developed by integrating our recent model on electron capacitance of Geobacter (Zhao et al., 2010) with a comprehensive simulator of coupled fluid flow, hydrologic transport, heat transfer, and biogeochemical reactions. This mechanistic reactive-transport model accurately reproduces the experimental data for the bioremediation of uranium with acetate amendment. We subsequently performed global sensitivity analysis with the reactive-transport model in order to identify the main sources of prediction uncertainty caused by synergistic effects of biological, geochemical, and hydrological processes. The proposed approach successfully captured significant contributing factors across time and space, thereby improving the structure and parameterization of the comprehensive reactive-transport model. The global sensitivity analysis also provides a potentially useful tool to evaluate uranium bioremediation strategy. The simulations suggest that under difficult environments (e.g., highly contaminated with U(VI) at a high migration rate of solutes), the efficiency of uranium removal can be improved by adding Geobacter species to the contaminated site (bioaugmentation) in conjunction with the addition of electron donor (biostimulation). The simulations also highlight the interactive effect of

  19. Influence of biological and ecological factors on hematological values in wild Little Penguins, Eudyptula minor.

    PubMed

    Sergent, N; Rogers, T; Cunningham, M

    2004-07-01

    Clinical hematology and biochemistry are recognized as useful aids in health diagnosis in birds. The Little Penguin (Eudyptula minor) is endemic to Australia and numbers are declining due to a number of factors including declining health. This 2-year study on both Bowen and Lion Island populations aimed at assessing the potential causes of their declining health. Blood was collected from a total of 294 adult Little Penguins. R.B.C., Hb, P.C.V., M.C.V., M.C.H., M.C.H.C., W.B.C. and differential counts, thrombocytes and T.P.P. were measured. Multiple regression was used to identify relationships between hematological values and the following predictor variables: site, season, sex, time held prior to sampling and body condition. Values obtained showed some differences compared to the values for other penguin species reported in the literature. P.C.V., R.B.C., Hb, M.C.H.C. and T.P.P. showed major differences in comparison with a previous study on little penguins. Considering the influence of predictor variables, it appeared that: P.C.V., R.B.C., M.C.V., M.C.H., M.C.H.C. varied according to seasons; P.C.V., R.B.C., M.C.H., T.P.P. were correlated to body condition; P.C.V. was higher in birds on Bowen Island compared to birds on Lion Island; and T.P.P. was higher in females. These ecological and biological predictor variables have a strong influence upon hematological values. As a consequence, they must be taken into consideration when interpreting results of future studies.

  20. The insulin-like growth factor-I receptor (IGF-IR) in breast cancer: biology and treatment strategies.

    PubMed

    Motallebnezhad, Morteza; Aghebati-Maleki, Leili; Jadidi-Niaragh, Farhad; Nickho, Hamid; Samadi-Kafil, Hosein; Shamsasenjan, Karim; Yousefi, Mehdi

    2016-09-01

    Breast cancer is the most common cancer and the second leading cause of cancer-related deaths among women worldwide. Although patients are often diagnosed in the early and curable stages, the treatment of metastatic breast cancer remains a major clinical challenge. The combination of chemotherapy with new targeting agents, such as bevacizumab, is helpful in improving patient survival; however, novel treatment strategies are required to improve clinical outcomes. The insulin-like growth factor-I receptor (IGF-IR) is a tyrosine kinase cell surface receptor which is involved in the regulation of cell growth and metabolism. Previous studies have shown that activation of the IGF-IR signaling pathway promotes proliferation, survival, and metastasis of breast cancer cells. Additionally, overexpression of IGF-IR is associated with breast cancer cell resistance to anticancer therapies. Recently, IGF-IR has been introduced as a marker of stemness in breast cancer cells and there is also accumulating evidence that IGF-IR contributes to the establishment and maintenance of breast cancer epithelial-mesenchymal transition (EMT). Therefore, pharmacological or molecular targeting of IGF-IR could be a promising strategy, in the treatment of patients with breast cancer, particularly in order to circumvent the therapeutic resistance and targeting breast cancer stem/progenitors. Currently, many strategies have been developed for targeting IGF-IR, some have entered clinical trials and some are in preclinical stages for breast cancer therapy. In this review, we will first discuss on the biology of IGF-IR in an attempt to find the role of this receptor in breast cancer and then discuss about therapeutic strategies to target this receptor.

  1. Brain metastasis in human epidermal growth factor receptor 2-positive breast cancer: from biology to treatment

    PubMed Central

    Koo, Taeryool

    2016-01-01

    Overexpression of human epidermal growth factor receptor 2 (HER2) is found in about 20% of breast cancer patients. With treatment using trastuzumab, an anti-HER2 monoclonal antibody, systemic control is improved. Nonetheless, the incidence of brain metastasis does not be improved, rather seems to be increased in HER2-positive breast cancer. The mainstay treatment for brain metastases is radiotherapy. According to the number of metastatic lesions and performance status of patients, radiosurgery or whole brain radiotherapy can be performed. The concurrent use of a radiosensitizer further improves intracranial control. Due to its large molecular weight, trastuzumab has a limited ability to cross the blood-brain barrier. However, small tyrosine kinase inhibitors such as lapatinib, has been noted to be a promising agent that can be used as a radiosensitizer to affect HER2-positive breast cancer. This review will outline general management of brain metastases and will focus on preclinical findings regarding the radiosensitizing effect of small molecule HER2 targeting agents. PMID:27104161

  2. Fission Yeast CSL Transcription Factors: Mapping Their Target Genes and Biological Roles

    PubMed Central

    Převorovský, Martin; Oravcová, Martina; Tvarůžková, Jarmila; Zach, Róbert; Folk, Petr; Půta, František; Bähler, Jürg

    2015-01-01

    Background Cbf11 and Cbf12, the fission yeast CSL transcription factors, have been implicated in the regulation of cell-cycle progression, but no specific roles have been described and their target genes have been only partially mapped. Methodology/Principal Findings Using a combination of transcriptome profiling under various conditions and genome-wide analysis of CSL-DNA interactions, we identify genes regulated directly and indirectly by CSL proteins in fission yeast. We show that the expression of stress-response genes and genes that are expressed periodically during the cell cycle is deregulated upon genetic manipulation of cbf11 and/or cbf12. Accordingly, the coordination of mitosis and cytokinesis is perturbed in cells with genetically manipulated CSL protein levels, together with other specific defects in cell-cycle progression. Cbf11 activity is nutrient-dependent and Δcbf11-associated defects are mitigated by inactivation of the protein kinase A (Pka1) and stress-activated MAP kinase (Sty1p38) pathways. Furthermore, Cbf11 directly regulates a set of lipid metabolism genes and Δcbf11 cells feature a stark decrease in the number of storage lipid droplets. Conclusions/Significance Our results provide a framework for a more detailed understanding of the role of CSL proteins in the regulation of cell-cycle progression in fission yeast. PMID:26366556

  3. Socioeconomic Factors and Leukocyte Telomere Length In A Multi-Ethnic Sample: Findings From The Multi-Ethnic Study of Atherosclerosis (MESA)

    PubMed Central

    Carroll, Judith E.; Diez-Roux, Ana V.; Adler, Nancy E.; Seeman, Teresa E.

    2012-01-01

    Previous findings have linked lower socioeconomic status (SES) with elevated morbidity and mortality. Leukocyte telomere length (LTL), which also has been associated with age-related disease morbidity and mortality, is a marker of aging at the cellular level, making it a valuable early biomarker of risk and an indicator of biological age. It is hypothesized that SES will be associated with LTL, indicating that SES influences disease risk by accelerating biological aging. In the present sample we test for associations of childhood SES and adult SES (i.e. education, income, home ownership) with LTL, and examine whether these associations vary by racial/ethnic group. Analyses on 963 subjects (18.7% White, 53% Hispanics, and 28.5% African American) from the Stress ancillary study of the Multi-Ethnic Study of Atherosclerosis revealed a significant difference in LTL between home owners and renters in Hispanic and White participants (p < .05), but not amongst African Americans (p = .98). There were no linear associations of adult education or family income with LTL, however, there was an inverse association between father’s education and LTL (p = .03). These findings suggest that for Whites and Hispanics renting vs. owning a home is associated with an older biological age; however we did not replicate previous findings linking education with LTL. PMID:23142704

  4. CloudNMF: a MapReduce implementation of nonnegative matrix factorization for large-scale biological datasets.

    PubMed

    Liao, Ruiqi; Zhang, Yifan; Guan, Jihong; Zhou, Shuigeng

    2014-02-01

    In the past decades, advances in high-throughput technologies have led to the generation of huge amounts of biological data that require analysis and interpretation. Recently, nonnegative matrix factorization (NMF) has been introduced as an efficient way to reduce the complexity of data as well as to interpret them, and has been applied to various fields of biological research. In this paper, we present CloudNMF, a distributed open-source implementation of NMF on a MapReduce framework. Experimental evaluation demonstrated that CloudNMF is scalable and can be used to deal with huge amounts of data, which may enable various kinds of a high-throughput biological data analysis in the cloud. CloudNMF is freely accessible at http://admis.fudan.edu.cn/projects/CloudNMF.html.

  5. Non-tumor necrosis factor-based biologic therapies for rheumatoid arthritis: present, future, and insights into pathogenesis

    PubMed Central

    Paula, Filipe Seguro; Alves, José Delgado

    2014-01-01

    The way rheumatoid arthritis is treated has changed dramatically with the introduction of anti-tumor necrosis factor (anti-TNF) biologics. Nevertheless, many patients still have less than adequate control of their disease activity even with these therapeutic regimens, and current knowledge fails to explain all the data already gathered. There is now a wide range of drugs from different classes of biologic disease-modifying anti-rheumatic drugs available (and soon this number will increase significantly), that provides the opportunity to address each patient as a particular case and thereby optimize medical intervention. Currently available biologics for the treatment of rheumatoid arthritis apart from anti-TNF-based therapies are reviewed, along with an analysis of the new insights they provide into the pathogenesis of the disease and a discussion of future prospects in the area. PMID:24353404

  6. An integrated model of transcription factor diffusion shows the importance of intersegmental transfer and quaternary protein structure for target site finding.

    PubMed

    Schmidt, Hugo G; Sewitz, Sven; Andrews, Steven S; Lipkow, Karen

    2014-01-01

    We present a computational model of transcription factor motion that explains both the observed rapid target finding of transcription factors, and how this motion influences protein and genome structure. Using the Smoldyn software, we modelled transcription factor motion arising from a combination of unrestricted 3D diffusion in the nucleoplasm, sliding along the DNA filament, and transferring directly between filament sections by intersegmental transfer. This presents a fine-grain picture of the way in which transcription factors find their targets two orders of magnitude faster than 3D diffusion alone allows. Eukaryotic genomes contain sections of nucleosome free regions (NFRs) around the promoters; our model shows that the presence and size of these NFRs can be explained as their acting as antennas on which transcription factors slide to reach their targets. Additionally, our model shows that intersegmental transfer may have shaped the quaternary structure of transcription factors: sequence specific DNA binding proteins are unusually enriched in dimers and tetramers, perhaps because these allow intersegmental transfer, which accelerates target site finding. Finally, our model shows that a 'hopping' motion can emerge from 3D diffusion on small scales. This explains the apparently long sliding lengths that have been observed for some DNA binding proteins observed in vitro. Together, these results suggest that transcription factor diffusion dynamics help drive the evolution of protein and genome structure.

  7. [Lymphocytic alveolitis in the early stages of HIV infection: correlation with biological and prognostic factors].

    PubMed

    Quint, L; Autran, B; Guillon, J M; Parrot, A; Denis, M; Debre, P; Mayaud, C M; Akoun, G M

    1992-01-01

    Broncho-alveolar lavage was performed to assess the degree of pulmonary lymphocytic alveolitis in 32 asymptomatic patients who were infected with the Human Immunodeficiency Virus (VIH). The patients were stages II and III of the CDC classification and the aim of the study was to determine the frequency, nature and prognostic role of the findings. 62.5% of the subjects (20/32) presented with a lymphocytic alveolitis which consisted predominantly of CD8 lymphocyte (64.3 +/- 3.5%), in the absence of an opportunistic infection or broncho-pulmonary tumours. Two sub-populations of alveolar CD8 were shown at comparable levels, a) sub-population CD8+D44+ (22.1 +/- 5%), in whom we showed the possession of cytotoxic activity in particular specific for VIH; b) sub-population CD8+CD57+ (19.6 +/- 3%) which we have shown to be capable in vitro of inhibiting the effector phase of cytotoxic activity of CD8+D44+ alveolar cells specific for VIH. In this group of 32 patients the occurrence of an alveolitis was not correlated with the usual prognostic factors of infection by VIH measured simultaneously with broncho-alveolar lavage (the level of CD4+ blood lymphocytes, and the beta 2-plasma microglobulins and the presence of p24 antigenaemia). In addition the level of CD4 lymphocytes supperior to 400/mm3 and of beta 2-microglobulins less then 3 mg/l whether a lymphocytic alveolitis was there or not confirmed the relatively poorly developed state of the VIH infection in these asymptomatic patients. Also the occurrence of a lymphocytic alveolitis did not seem to be linked to progression of the disease in the group of patients studied.(ABSTRACT TRUNCATED AT 250 WORDS)

  8. Factors predicting the use of technology: findings from the Center for Research and Education on Aging and Technology Enhancement (CREATE).

    PubMed

    Czaja, Sara J; Charness, Neil; Fisk, Arthur D; Hertzog, Christopher; Nair, Sankaran N; Rogers, Wendy A; Sharit, Joseph

    2006-06-01

    The successful adoption of technology is becoming increasingly important to functional independence. The present article reports findings from the Center for Research and Education on Aging and Technology Enhancement (CREATE) on the use of technology among community-dwelling adults. The sample included 1,204 individuals ranging in age from 18-91 years. All participants completed a battery that included measures of demographic characteristics, self-rated health, experience with technology, attitudes toward computers, and component cognitive abilities. Findings indicate that the older adults were less likely than younger adults to use technology in general, computers, and the World Wide Web. The results also indicate that computer anxiety, fluid intelligence, and crystallized intelligence were important predictors of the use of technology. The relationship between age and adoption of technology was mediated by cognitive abilities, computer self-efficacy, and computer anxiety. These findings are discussed in terms of training strategies to promote technology adoption.

  9. Factors Predicting the Use of Technology: Findings From the Center for Research and Education on Aging and Technology Enhancement (CREATE)

    PubMed Central

    Czaja, Sara J.; Charness, Neil; Fisk, Arthur D.; Hertzog, Christopher; Nair, Sankaran N.; Rogers, Wendy A.; Sharit, Joseph

    2006-01-01

    The successful adoption of technology is becoming increasingly important to functional independence. The present article reports findings from the Center for Research and Education on Aging and Technology Enhancement (CREATE) on the use of technology among community-dwelling adults. The sample included 1,204 individuals ranging in age from 18–91 years. All participants completed a battery that included measures of demographic characteristics, self-rated health, experience with technology, attitudes toward computers, and component cognitive abilities. Findings indicate that the older adults were less likely than younger adults to use technology in general, computers, and the World Wide Web. The results also indicate that computer anxiety, fluid intelligence, and crystallized intelligence were important predictors of the use of technology. The relationship between age and adoption of technology was mediated by cognitive abilities, computer self-efficacy, and computer anxiety. These findings are discussed in terms of training strategies to promote technology adoption. PMID:16768579

  10. Ethno-Specific Risk Factors for Adverse Pregnancy Outcomes: Findings from the Born in Bradford Cohort Study.

    PubMed

    Stacey, Tomasina; Prady, Stephanie; Haith-Cooper, Melanie; Downe, Soo; Simpson, Nigel; Pickett, Kate

    2016-07-01

    Objectives Preterm birth (PTB) and small for gestational age (SGA) are major causes of perinatal mortality and morbidity. Previous studies indicated a range of risk factors associated with these poor outcomes, including maternal psychosocial and economic wellbeing. This paper will explore a range of psycho-social and economic factors in an ethnically diverse population. Methods The UK's Born in Bradford cohort study recruited pregnant women attending a routine antenatal appointment at 26-28 weeks' gestation at the Bradford Royal Infirmary (2007-2010). This analysis includes 9680 women with singleton live births who completed the baseline questionnaire. Data regarding maternal socio-demographic and mental health were recorded. Outcome data were collected prospectively, and analysed using multivariate regression models. The primary outcomes measured were: PTB (<37 weeks' gestation) and SGA (<10th customised centile). Results After adjustment for socio-demographic and medical factors, financial strain was associated with a 45 % increase in PTB (OR 1.45: 95 % CI 1.06-1.98). Contrary to expectation, maternal distress in Pakistani women was negatively associated with SGA (OR 0.65: CI 0.48-0.88). Obesity in White British women was protective for PTB (OR 0.67: CI 0.45-0.98). Previously recognized risk factors, such as smoking in pregnancy and hypertension, were confirmed. Conclusions This study confirms known risk factors for PTB and SGA, along with a new variable of interest, financial strain. It also reveals a difference in the risk factors between ethnicities. In order to develop appropriate targeted preventative strategies to improve perinatal outcome in disadvantaged groups, a greater understanding of ethno-specific risk factors is required.

  11. [Factors influencing uptake of influenza vaccination in healthcare workers. Findings from a study in a general hospital].

    PubMed

    Castella, A; Argentero, P A; Lanszweert, A

    2009-01-01

    Despite recommendations, influenza vaccination coverage in health professionals remains low throughout the world. In order to identify reasons for adherence or refusal we conducted a study within our hospital by means of interview questionnaires which were distributed to health care workers to reveal factors influencing acceptance or refusal of vaccination and to get suggestions to improve vaccination coverage. There is good overlap between our results and data obtainable from international literature: the main motivating factor for vaccination is personal protection against influenza, while only a significantly smaller part gave protection of patients as a reason. The main factors for not adhering to vaccination are belief the vaccine is not effective, influenza-related sick leave, fear of adverse effects and lack of availability. These data point out the need for more information concerning the importance of influenza infection within risk groups, the safety and effectiveness of the vaccine. Further, it is suitable to increase availability of the vaccine free of charge.

  12. The Nature of Field Independence: Percentiles and Factor Structure of the Finding Embedded Figures Test--Research Edition.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Melancon, Janet G.; Thompson, Bruce

    This study investigated the nature of field independence by exploring the structure underlying responses to Forms A and B of a multiple-choice measure of field-independence, the Finding Embedded Figures Test (FEFT). Subjects included 302 students (52.7% male) enrolled in mathematics courses at a university in the southern United States. Students…

  13. Using ANN to predict E. coli accumulation in coves based on interaction amongst various physical, chemical and biological factors

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dwivedi, D.; Mohanty, B. P.; Lesikar, B. J.

    2008-12-01

    The accumulation of Escherichia Coli (E. coli) in canals, coves and streams is the result of a number of interacting processes operating at multiple spatial and temporal scales. Fate and transport of E. coli in surface water systems is governed by different physical, chemical, and biological processes. Various models developed to quantify each of these processes occurring at different scales are not so far pooled into a single predictive model. At present, very little is known about the fate and transport of E. coli in the environment. We hypothesize that E. coli population heterogeneity in canals and coves is affected by physical factors (average stream width and/ depth, secchi depth, flow and flow severity, day since precipitation, aquatic vegetation, solar radiation, dissolved and total suspended solids etc.); chemical factors (basic water quality, nutrients, organic compounds, pH, and toxicity etc.); and biological factors (type of bacterial strain, predation, and antagonism etc.). The specific objectives of this study are to: (1) examine the interactions between E. coli and various coupled physical, chemical and biological factors; (2) examine the interactions between E. coli and toxic organic pollutants and other pathogens (viruses); and (3) evaluate qualitatively the removal efficiency of E. coli. We suggest that artificial neural networks (ANN) may be used to provide a possible solution to this problem. To demonstrate the application of the approach, we develop an ANN representing E. coli accumulation in two polluted sites at Lake Granbury in the upper part of the Brazos River in North Central Texas. The graphical structure of ANN explicitly represents cause- and-effect relationship between system variables. Each of these relationships can then be quantified independently using an approach suitable for the type and scale of information available. Preliminary results revealed that E. coli concentrations in canals show seasonal variations regardless of change

  14. Summary of Effects of Biological Factors on Sex-Related Differences in Mathematics Achievement.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Sherman, Julia

    Critically reviewed evidence relevant to hypotheses of biological sources of sex-related cognitive differences as they relate to mathematics achievement include the following: explanations based on the assumption of greater variability in male cognitive performance; sex-related differences in serum urate; effects of estrogens compared to androgens…

  15. Factors Influencing Academic Performance of Students Enrolled in a Lower Division Cell Biology Core Course

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Soto, Julio G.; Anand, Sulekha

    2009-01-01

    Students' performance in two semesters of our Cell Biology course was examined for this study. Teaching strategies, behaviors, and pre-course variables were analyzed with respect to students' performance. Pre-semester and post-semester surveys were administered to ascertain students' perceptions about class difficulty, amount of study and effort…

  16. 50 CFR 23.64 - What factors are considered in making a finding that a plant is artificially propagated?

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2014 CFR

    2014-10-01

    ... INTERNATIONAL TRADE IN ENDANGERED SPECIES OF WILD FAUNA AND FLORA (CITES) Factors Considered in Making Certain... conditions means a nonnatural environment that is intensively manipulated by human intervention for the... survival of the species in the wild. (3) Is maintained in sufficient quantities for propagation so as...

  17. 50 CFR 23.64 - What factors are considered in making a finding that a plant is artificially propagated?

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2012 CFR

    2012-10-01

    ... INTERNATIONAL TRADE IN ENDANGERED SPECIES OF WILD FAUNA AND FLORA (CITES) Factors Considered in Making Certain... conditions means a nonnatural environment that is intensively manipulated by human intervention for the... survival of the species in the wild. (3) Is maintained in sufficient quantities for propagation so as...

  18. 50 CFR 23.64 - What factors are considered in making a finding that a plant is artificially propagated?

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2013 CFR

    2013-10-01

    ... INTERNATIONAL TRADE IN ENDANGERED SPECIES OF WILD FAUNA AND FLORA (CITES) Factors Considered in Making Certain... conditions means a nonnatural environment that is intensively manipulated by human intervention for the... survival of the species in the wild. (3) Is maintained in sufficient quantities for propagation so as...

  19. Is Low Self-Esteem a Risk Factor for Depression? Findings from a Longitudinal Study of Mexican-Origin Youth

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Orth, Ulrich; Robins, Richard W.; Widaman, Keith F.; Conger, Rand D.

    2014-01-01

    We examined the relation between low self-esteem and depression using longitudinal data from a sample of 674 Mexican-origin early adolescents who were assessed at age 10 and 12 years. Results supported the vulnerability model, which states that low self-esteem is a prospective risk factor for depression. Moreover, results suggested that the…

  20. Test Anxiety and the Validity of Cognitive Tests: A Confirmatory Factor Analysis Perspective and Some Empirical Findings

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Wicherts, Jelte M.; Scholten, Annemarie Zand

    2010-01-01

    The validity of cognitive ability tests is often interpreted solely as a function of the cognitive abilities that these tests are supposed to measure, but other factors may be at play. The effects of test anxiety on the criterion related validity (CRV) of tests was the topic of a recent study by Reeve, Heggestad, and Lievens (2009) (Reeve, C. L.,…

  1. Factors Associated with Self-Injurious Behaviors in Children with Autism Spectrum Disorder: Findings from Two Large National Samples

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Soke, G. N.; Rosenberg, S. A.; Hamman, R. F.; Fingerlin, T.; Rosenberg, C. R.; Carpenter, L.; Lee, L. C.; Giarelli, E.; Wiggins, L. D.; Durkin, M. S.; Reynolds, A.; DiGuiseppi, C.

    2017-01-01

    In this study, we explored potential associations among self-injurious behaviors (SIB) and a diverse group of protective and risk factors in children with autism spectrum disorder from two databases: Autism and Developmental Disabilities Monitoring (ADDM) Network and the Autism Speaks-Autism Treatment Network (AS-ATN). The presence of SIB was…

  2. Differences in risk factors for self-harm with and without suicidal intent: Findings from the ALSPAC cohort

    PubMed Central

    Mars, Becky; Heron, Jon; Crane, Catherine; Hawton, Keith; Kidger, Judi; Lewis, Glyn; Macleod, John; Tilling, Kate; Gunnell, David

    2014-01-01

    Background There is a lack of consensus about whether self-harm with suicidal intent differs in aetiology and prognosis from non-suicidal self-harm, and whether they should be considered as different diagnostic categories. Method Participants were 4799 members of the Avon Longitudinal Study of Parents and Children (ALSPAC), a UK population-based birth cohort who completed a postal questionnaire on self-harm with and without suicidal intent at age 16 years. Multinomial logistic regression analyses were used to examine differences in the risk factor profiles of individuals who self-harmed with and without suicidal intent. Results Many risk factors were common to both behaviours, but associations were generally stronger in relation to suicidal self-harm. This was particularly true for mental health problems; compared to those with non-suicidal self-harm, those who had harmed with suicidal intent had an increased risk of depression (OR 3.50[95% CI 1.64, 7.43]) and anxiety disorder (OR 3.50[95% CI 1.72, 7.13]). Higher IQ and maternal education were risk factors for non-suicidal self-harm but not suicidal self-harm. Risk factors that appeared specific to suicidal self-harm included lower IQ and socioeconomic position, physical cruelty to children in the household and parental self-harm. Limitations i) There was some loss to follow-up, ii) difficulty in measuring suicidal intent, iii) we cannot rule out the possibility of reverse causation for some exposure variables, iv) we were unable to identify the subgroup that had only ever harmed with suicidal intent. Conclusion Self-harm with and without suicidal intent are overlapping behaviours but with some distinct characteristics, indicating the importance of fully exploring vulnerability factors, motivations, and intentions in adolescents who self harm. PMID:25108277

  3. Studies of acute and chronic radiation injury at the Biological and Medical Research Division, Argonne National Laboratory, 1953-1970: Description of individual studies, data files, codes, and summaries of significant findings

    SciTech Connect

    Grahn, D.; Fox, C.; Wright, B.J.; Carnes, B.A.

    1994-05-01

    Between 1953 and 1970, studies on the long-term effects of external x-ray and {gamma} irradiation on inbred and hybrid mouse stocks were carried out at the Biological and Medical Research Division, Argonne National Laboratory. The results of these studies, plus the mating, litter, and pre-experimental stock records, were routinely coded on IBM cards for statistical analysis and record maintenance. Also retained were the survival data from studies performed in the period 1943-1953 at the National Cancer Institute, National Institutes of Health, Bethesda, Maryland. The card-image data files have been corrected where necessary and refiled on hard disks for long-term storage and ease of accessibility. In this report, the individual studies and data files are described, and pertinent factors regarding caging, husbandry, radiation procedures, choice of animals, and other logistical details are summarized. Some of the findings are also presented. Descriptions of the different mouse stocks and hybrids are included in an appendix; more than three dozen stocks were involved in these studies. Two other appendices detail the data files in their original card-image format and the numerical codes used to describe the animal`s exit from an experiment and, for some studies, any associated pathologic findings. Tabular summaries of sample sizes, dose levels, and other variables are also given to assist investigators in their selection of data for analysis. The archive is open to any investigator with legitimate interests and a willingness to collaborate and acknowledge the source of the data and to recognize appropriate conditions or caveats.

  4. Determination of scattering coefficient considering wavelength and absorption dependence of anisotropy factor measured by polarized beam for biological tissues

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Fukutomi, D.; Ishii, K.; Awazu, K.

    2015-12-01

    Anisotropy factor g, one of the optical properties of biological tissues, is the most important parameter to accurately determine scattering coefficient μs in the inverse Monte Carlo (iMC) simulation. It has been reported that g has wavelength and absorption dependence, however, there are few attempts in order to calculate μs of biological tissue considering the wavelength and absorption dependence of g. In this study, the scattering angular distributions of biological tissue phantoms were measured in order to determine g by using goniometric measurements with three polarization conditions at strongly and weakly absorbing wavelengths of hemoglobin. Then, optical properties, especially, μs were measured by integrating sphere measurements and iMC simulation in order to confirm the influence of measured g on optical properties in comparison of with general value of g (0.9) for soft biological tissue. Consequently, it was found that μs was overestimated at strongly absorbing wavelength, however, μs was underestimated at weakly absorbing wavelength if the g was not considered its wavelength and absorption dependence.

  5. Risk factors associated with lifetime suicide attempts in bipolar I patients: findings from a French National Cohort.

    PubMed

    Azorin, Jean-Michel; Kaladjian, Arthur; Adida, Marc; Hantouche, Elie; Hameg, Ahcene; Lancrenon, Sylvie; Akiskal, Hagop Souren

    2009-01-01

    Risk factors that may be associated with suicide attempts in bipolar disorder are still a matter of debate. We compared demographic, illness course, clinical, and temperamental features of suicide attempters vs those of nonattempters in a large sample of bipolar I patients admitted for an index manic episode. One thousand ninety patients (attempters = 382, nonattempters = 708) were included in the study. Multivariate analysis evidenced 8 risk factors associated with lifetime suicide attempts as follows: multiple hospitalizations, depressive or mixed polarity of first episode, presence of stressful life events before illness onset, younger age at onset, no free intervals between episodes, female sex, higher number of previous episodes, and cyclothymic temperament. These characteristics may help identify subjects at risk for suicide attempt throughout the course of bipolar disorder. We finally propose to integrate such characteristics into a stress-diathesis model of suicidal behavior, adapted to bipolar patients.

  6. Social and Environmental Factors Related to Smoking Cessation among Mothers: Findings from the Geographic Research on Welling (Grow) Study

    PubMed Central

    Castro, Yessenia; Heck, Katherine; Forster, Jean L.; Widome, Rachel; Cubbin, Catherine

    2015-01-01

    Objectives The current study examined associations between race/ethnicity and psychosocial/environmental factors with current smoking status, and whether psychosocial/environmental factors accounted for racial differences in smoking status in a population-based sample of mothers in California. Methods Cross-sectional data from 542 women with a history of smoking were used. Analyses adjusted for age, partner status, and educational attainment. Results In models adjusted for sociodemographics, black women had significantly lower odds, and Latina immigrants had significantly higher odds of being a former smoker compared to white women. Persons smoking in the home, having a majority of friends who smoke, having perceptions of their neighborhood as being somewhat or very unsafe, and experiencing food insecurity were associated with decreased odds of being a former smoker. When these variables were entered into a single model, only being a Latina immigrant and having a majority of friends who smoke were significantly associated with smoking status. Conclusions Black women demonstrated a notable disparity compared with white women in smoking status, accounted for by psychosocial/environmental factors. Immigrant Latinas demonstrated notable success in ever quitting smoking. Social networks may be important barriers to smoking cessation among women. PMID:26450549

  7. Characterization of Psychological and Biological Factors in an Animal Model of Warrior Stress

    DTIC Science & Technology

    2013-07-26

    determine whether and how psychological and physiological systems interact in response to simultaneous exposure to more than one type of stress... social support. If the physiological and/or psychological response is compromised in some way (e.g., overactive or underactive), then physical or...is now thought of as a stress psychobiologist because of his consideration of the interaction between psychological, environmental, and biological

  8. A Systems Biology Approach to Link Nuclear Factor Kappa B Activation with Lethal Prostate Cancer

    DTIC Science & Technology

    2012-05-01

    progression of prostate cancer to a lethal disease . We aim to identify patients with lethal prostate cancer using a systems biology approach focused on...activation which are associated with lethal disease . (Months 1 to 18) Task 1A: Perform gene profiling of tumors and determine whether a set of genes and...panel to be assessed for correlation with lethal disease . (Month 1 to 18) Accomplishments: In the first 12 months of the grant we have (i

  9. [Biological, chemical, and radiation factors in the classification of medical waste].

    PubMed

    Rusakov, N V; Korotkova, G I; Orlov, A Iu; Kadyrov, D E

    2011-01-01

    The current classification of medical waste does not consider the sanitary-and-chemical hazard of epidemiologically dangerous and extremely dangerous medical waste (classes B and C). According to the results of the studies performed, the authors propose the improved classification of medical waste, which makes it possible to take into account not only infectious, radiation, and toxicological, but also sanitary-and-chemical hazards (toxicity, carcinogenicity, mutagenicity, and biological activity) of medical waste.

  10. Clinical factors associated with statins prescription in acute ischemic stroke patients: findings from the Lombardia Stroke Registry

    PubMed Central

    2014-01-01

    Background Statins, due to their well-established pleiotropic effects, have noteworthy benefits in stroke prevention. Despite this, a significant proportion of high-risk patients still do not receive the recommended therapeutic regimens, and many others discontinue treatment after being started on them. The causes of non-adherence to current guidelines are multifactorial, and depend on both physicians and patients. The aim of this study is to identify the factors influencing statin prescription at Stroke Unit (SU) discharge. Methods This study included 12,750 patients enrolled on the web-based Lombardia Stroke Registry (LRS) from July 2009 to April 2012 and discharged alive, with a diagnosis of ischemic stroke or transient ischemic attack (TIA) and without contra-indication to statin therapy. By logistic regression analysis and classification trees, we evaluated the impact of demographic data, risk factors, tPA treatment, in-hospital procedures and complications on statin prescription rate at discharge. Results We observed a slight increase in statins prescription during the study period (from 39.1 to 43.9%). Lower age, lower stroke severity and prestroke disability, the presence of atherothrombotic/lacunar risk factors, a diagnosis of non-cardioembolic stroke, tPA treatment, the absence of in-hospital complications, with the sole exception of hypertensive fits and hyperglycemia, were the patient-related predictors of adherence to guidelines by physicians. Overall, dyslipidemia appears as the leading factor, while TOAST classification does not reach statistical significance. Conclusions In our region, Lombardia, adherence to guidelines in statin prescription at Stroke Unit discharge is very different from international goals. The presence of dyslipidemia remains the main factor influencing statin prescription, while the presence of well-defined atherosclerotic etiopathogenesis of stroke does not enhance statin prescription. Some uncertainties about the risk

  11. Tandem repeats discovery service (TReaDS) applied to finding novel cis-acting factors in repeat expansion diseases

    PubMed Central

    2012-01-01

    Background Tandem repeats are multiple duplications of substrings in the DNA that occur contiguously, or at a short distance, and may involve some mutations (such as substitutions, insertions, and deletions). Tandem repeats have been extensively studied also for their association with the class of repeat expansion diseases (mostly affecting the nervous system). Comparative studies on the output of different tools for finding tandem repeats highlighted significant differences among the sets of detected tandem repeats, while many authors pointed up how critical it is the right choice of parameters. Results In this paper we present TReaDS - Tandem Repeats Discovery Service, a tandem repeat meta search engine. TReaDS forwards user requests to several state of the art tools for finding tandem repeats and merges their outcome into a single report, providing a global, synthetic, and comparative view of the results. In particular, TReaDS allows the user to (i) simultaneously run different algorithms on the same data set, (ii) choose for each algorithm a different setting of parameters, and (iii) obtain a report that can be downloaded for further, off-line, investigations. We used TReaDS to investigate sequences associated with repeat expansion diseases. Conclusions By using the tool TReaDS we discover that, for 27 repeat expansion diseases out of a currently known set of 29, long fuzzy tandem repeats are covering the expansion loci. Tests with control sets confirm the specificity of this association. This finding suggests that long fuzzy tandem repeats can be a new class of cis-acting elements involved in the mechanisms leading to the expansion instability. We strongly believe that biologists can be interested in a tool that, not only gives them the possibility of using multiple search algorithm at the same time, with the same effort exerted in using just one of the systems, but also simplifies the burden of comparing and merging the results, thus expanding our

  12. Heart disease occurs in a biological, psychological, and social matrix: cardiac risk factors, symptom presentation, and recovery as illustrative examples.

    PubMed

    Suls, Jerry; Martin, René

    2011-04-01

    Despite the basic premise of behavioral medicine that understanding and treatment of physical well-being require a full appreciation of the confluence of micro-, molar-, and macro-variables, the field tends to focus on linear, causal relationships. In this paper, we argue that more attention be given to a dynamic matrix approach, which assumes that biological, psychological, and social elements are interconnected and continually influence each other (consistent with the biopsychosocial model). To illustrate, the authors draw from their independent and collaborative research programs on overlapping cardiac risk factors, symptom interpretation, and treatment delay for cardiac care and recovery from heart disease. "Cabling" across biological, psychological, and social variables is considered as a transformative strategy for medicine and the other health-related disciplines.

  13. Clinical characteristics and risk factors for Kraepelinian subtype of schizophrenia: replication of previous findings and relation to summer birth.

    PubMed

    Bralet, Marie-Cécile; Loas, Gwenolé; Yon, Valerie; Maréchal, V

    2002-08-30

    The aims of the study were: (1) to replicate findings that patients with Kraepelinian schizophrenia constitute a distinct subgroup and (2) to examine the relationship between season of birth and the Kraepelinian subtype. Thirty-one Kraepelinian patients, defined on the basis of a longitudinal criterion--at least 5 years of continuous and complete dependence on others to maintain the basic necessities of life, including food, clothing and shelter--were compared with 279 non-Kraepelinian schizophrenic patients. All patients met ICD-10 criteria for schizophrenia and were evaluated with the Positive and Negative Syndrome Scale. Kraepelinian schizophrenic patients had more negative symptoms and were more disorganized than non-Kraepelinian patients. Positive and anxious-depressive symptoms did not differ between the two groups. Among Kraepelinian patients, there was an excess number of births in the month of July. These findings are consistent with previous reports that Kraepelinian patients could have a disease with an etiopathophysiology separate from that of other schizophrenic patients.

  14. Predictive power of individual factors and clinical learning experience on academic success: findings from a longitudinal study.

    PubMed

    Dante, Angelo; Fabris, Stefano; Palese, Alvisa

    2015-01-01

    Academic failure is the inability of a nursing student to graduate or to complete the nursing degree on time. This longitudinal cohort study, involving 2 Italian universities, documents the effects of selected individual variables and the quality of the clinical learning experience as perceived by students on academic success. Factors related to the clinical learning experience were the quality of the supervisory relationship, pedagogical atmosphere, and commitment of the ward related to the level of personalized nursing care delivered and clarity of nursing documentation.

  15. Physiological functions and underlying mechanisms of fibroblast growth factor (FGF) family members: recent findings and implications for their pharmacological application.

    PubMed

    Imamura, Toru

    2014-01-01

    Despite their name, fibroblast growth factors (FGFs) are multifunctional regulators affecting a wide variety of physiological events. This review summarizes our recent studies on FGFs from mechanistic, physiological and application-oriented viewpoints. These include studies on the importance of βKlotho and glycosaminoglycans for the signaling of hormonal FGFs (FGF21 and FGF19); the physiological role of a paracrine FGF (FGF18) in hair cycle regulation; and the development of a stable, chimeric FGF protein composed of FGF1 and FGF2 domains suitable for radioprotection.

  16. Transforming growth factor alpha: mutation of aspartic acid 47 and leucine 48 results in different biological activities.

    PubMed Central

    Lazar, E; Watanabe, S; Dalton, S; Sporn, M B

    1988-01-01

    To study the relationship between the primary structure of transforming growth factor alpha (TGF-alpha) and some of its functional properties (competition with epidermal growth factor (EGF) for binding to the EGF receptor and induction of anchorage-independent growth), we introduced single amino acid mutations into the sequence for the fully processed, 50-amino-acid human TGF-alpha. The wild-type and mutant proteins were expressed in a vector by using a yeast alpha mating pheromone promoter. Mutations of two amino acids that are conserved in the family of the EGF-like peptides and are located in the carboxy-terminal part of TGF-alpha resulted in different biological effects. When aspartic acid 47 was mutated to alanine or asparagine, biological activity was retained; in contrast, substitutions of this residue with serine or glutamic acid generated mutants with reduced binding and colony-forming capacities. When leucine 48 was mutated to alanine, a complete loss of binding and colony-forming abilities resulted; mutation of leucine 48 to isoleucine or methionine resulted in very low activities. Our data suggest that these two adjacent conserved amino acids in positions 47 and 48 play different roles in defining the structure and/or biological activity of TGF-alpha and that the carboxy terminus of TGF-alpha is involved in interactions with cellular TGF-alpha receptors. The side chain of leucine 48 appears to be crucial either indirectly in determining the biologically active conformation of TGF-alpha or directly in the molecular recognition of TGF-alpha by its receptor. PMID:3285178

  17. Interleukin-6 Is a Risk Factor for Atrial Fibrillation in Chronic Kidney Disease: Findings from the CRIC Study.

    PubMed

    Amdur, Richard L; Mukherjee, Monica; Go, Alan; Barrows, Ian R; Ramezani, Ali; Shoji, Jun; Reilly, Muredach P; Gnanaraj, Joseph; Deo, Raj; Roas, Sylvia; Keane, Martin; Master, Steve; Teal, Valerie; Soliman, Elsayed Z; Yang, Peter; Feldman, Harold; Kusek, John W; Tracy, Cynthia M; Raj, Dominic S

    2016-01-01

    Atrial fibrillation (AF) is the most common sustained arrhythmia in patients with chronic kidney disease (CKD). In this study, we examined the association between inflammation and AF in 3,762 adults with CKD, enrolled in the Chronic Renal Insufficiency Cohort (CRIC) study. AF was determined at baseline by self-report and electrocardiogram (ECG). Plasma concentrations of interleukin(IL)-1, IL-1 Receptor antagonist, IL-6, tumor necrosis factor (TNF)-α, transforming growth factor-β, high sensitivity C-Reactive protein, and fibrinogen, measured at baseline. At baseline, 642 subjects had history of AF, but only 44 had AF in ECG recording. During a mean follow-up of 3.7 years, 108 subjects developed new-onset AF. There was no significant association between inflammatory biomarkers and past history of AF. After adjustment for demographic characteristics, comorbid conditions, laboratory values, echocardiographic variables, and medication use, plasma IL-6 level was significantly associated with presence of AF at baseline (Odds ratio [OR], 1.61; 95% confidence interval [CI], 1.21 to 2.14; P = 0.001) and new-onset AF (OR, 1.25; 95% CI, 1.02 to 1.53; P = 0.03). To summarize, plasma IL-6 level is an independent and consistent predictor of AF in patients with CKD.

  18. Interleukin-6 Is a Risk Factor for Atrial Fibrillation in Chronic Kidney Disease: Findings from the CRIC Study

    PubMed Central

    Amdur, Richard L.; Mukherjee, Monica; Go, Alan; Barrows, Ian R.; Ramezani, Ali; Shoji, Jun; Reilly, Muredach P.; Gnanaraj, Joseph; Deo, Raj; Roas, Sylvia; Keane, Martin; Master, Steve; Teal, Valerie; Soliman, Elsayed Z.; Yang, Peter; Feldman, Harold; Kusek, John W.; Tracy, Cynthia M.; Raj, Dominic S.

    2016-01-01

    Atrial fibrillation (AF) is the most common sustained arrhythmia in patients with chronic kidney disease (CKD). In this study, we examined the association between inflammation and AF in 3,762 adults with CKD, enrolled in the Chronic Renal Insufficiency Cohort (CRIC) study. AF was determined at baseline by self-report and electrocardiogram (ECG). Plasma concentrations of interleukin(IL)-1, IL-1 Receptor antagonist, IL-6, tumor necrosis factor (TNF)-α, transforming growth factor-β, high sensitivity C-Reactive protein, and fibrinogen, measured at baseline. At baseline, 642 subjects had history of AF, but only 44 had AF in ECG recording. During a mean follow-up of 3.7 years, 108 subjects developed new-onset AF. There was no significant association between inflammatory biomarkers and past history of AF. After adjustment for demographic characteristics, comorbid conditions, laboratory values, echocardiographic variables, and medication use, plasma IL-6 level was significantly associated with presence of AF at baseline (Odds ratio [OR], 1.61; 95% confidence interval [CI], 1.21 to 2.14; P = 0.001) and new-onset AF (OR, 1.25; 95% CI, 1.02 to 1.53; P = 0.03). To summarize, plasma IL-6 level is an independent and consistent predictor of AF in patients with CKD. PMID:26840403

  19. Cytokine profiles of seventeen cytokines, growth factors and chemokines in cord blood and its relation to perinatal clinical findings.

    PubMed

    Takahashi, Naoto; Uehara, Ritei; Kobayashi, Mami; Yada, Yukari; Koike, Yasunori; Kawamata, Ryou; Odaka, Jun; Honma, Yoko; Momoi, Mariko Y

    2010-03-01

    Few papers have investigated the cytokine profiles of multiple cytokines in cord blood. We obtained cord blood samples from 224 infants admitted to our neonatal intensive care unit. Cytokine profiles of 17 cytokines were investigated using cytometric bead array technology. We found a wide variety of cytokines of various levels which ranged from 0.59pg/ml (in Interleukin (IL)-4) to 222.0pg/ml (in macrophage inflammatory protein-1beta. Pro-inflammatory cytokines were highly correlated with each other and with granulocyte-colony stimulating factor and IL-8. On the contrary, IL-5, IL-13, and IL-17 did not show any significant correlation with other cytokines. Several maternal factors were strongly related to several cytokines in cord blood. IL-6, IL-8 and monocyte chemotactic protein-1 were closely related to certain neonatal diseases in preterm neonates. Some cytokines may be regulated independently of each other, while others appear to work as a network affecting physiological and pathological conditions in the fetus.

  20. Risk Factors for Long-Term Homelessness: Findings From a Longitudinal Study of First-Time Homeless Single Adults

    PubMed Central

    Caton, Carol L. M.; Dominguez, Boanerges; Schanzer, Bella; Hasin, Deborah S.; Shrout, Patrick E.; Felix, Alan; McQuistion, Hunter; Opler, Lewis A.; Hsu, Eustace

    2005-01-01

    Objectives. We examined risk factors for long-term homelessness among newly homeless men and women who were admitted to New York City shelters in 2001 and 2002. Methods. Interviews were conducted with 377 study participants upon entry into the shelter and at 6-month intervals for 18 months. Standardized assessments of psychiatric diagnosis, symptoms, and coping skills; social and family history; and service use were analyzed. Kaplan—Meier survival analysis and Cox regression were used to examine the association between baseline assessments and duration of homelessness. Results. Eighty-one percent of participants returned to community housing during the follow-up period; the median duration of homelessness was 190 days. Kaplan—Meier survival analysis showed that a shorter duration of homelessness was associated with younger age, current or recent employment, earned income, good coping skills, adequate family support, absence of a substance abuse treatment history, and absence of an arrest history. Cox regression showed that older age group P<.05) and arrest history (P<.01) were the strongest predictors of a longer duration of homelessness. Conclusions. Identification of risk factors for long-term homelessness can guide efforts to reduce lengths of stay in homeless shelters and to develop new preventive interventions. PMID:16131638

  1. Community-Based Strategy to Prevent Deliberate Self-Harm in Adolescence: An Inquiry to Find Risk Factors at School

    PubMed Central

    Remaschi, Laura; Cecchini, Cristina; Meringolo, Patrizia

    2015-01-01

    Background: Self-harm behaviors consist of parasuicidal behaviors, which represent “a deliberate destruction of body tissue, with or without suicidal intent”. A theoretical model is the Experiential Avoidance Model. The most frequent risk factors are school distress, poor social integration, poor social and family support, drugs use, sexual abuse, altered sense of life and death, bad relationship with the body and unsolved body mentalization process. Objectives: The objective of the present study was to perform an analysis of risk factors for self-harm behaviors, to help plan preventive actions. Patients and Methods: One questionnaire with specific scales was employed for students, whereas three semi-structured interviews were employed for teachers, all on distress perception and self-harm in school. Results: Data analysis confirms an association between self- cutting and alcohol use, sexual harassments, school dropout, threatening people, incommunicability with family members and negative relationship with the body and suicide attempts, with a clear tendency for males. In the interviews, teachers highlight self-injury as a dysfunctional relationship with the body and observe several risk markers of psychological distress. Conclusions: The results confirm the available literature data, while noting that self-harming is a preponderantly male behavior. The results also signal the need to create opportunities to instruct teachers to combat the resistances and stereotypes of psychological distress. PMID:25883916

  2. Phosphorylation of the growth factors bFGF, NGF and BDNF: a prerequisite for their biological activity.

    PubMed

    Klumpp, Susanne; Kriha, Dorothee; Bechmann, Gunther; Maassen, Alexander; Maier, Sandra; Pallast, Stefanie; Hoell, Patrick; Krieglstein, Josef

    2006-01-01

    The aim of this work was to test whether growth factors such as basic fibroblast growth factor (bFGF), nerve growth factor (NGF) and brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) undergo autophosphorylation and whether this affects their biological activity. Incubation of those growth factors with [gamma-(32)P]ATP resulted in phosphorylation in vitro. The phosphate bond was resistant to alkaline pH, yet acid-labile. Addition of alkaline phosphatase resulted in time and protein dependent dephosphorylation. Concomitantly, alkaline phosphatase abolished the neuroprotective effect of those growth factors upon oxygen and glucose deprivation and upon staurosporine-induced cell death. For those studies, we were using primary cultures of cortical and hippocampal neurons from embryonic and neonatal rats. Incubation of bFGF with non-hydrolyzable ATP-gammaS resulted in phosphorylation and in neuroprotection resistant to alkaline phosphatase. We conclude that bFGF, NGF and BDNF undergo autophosphorylation on site(s) other than serine, threonine, tyrosine and/or ATP-binding, and that this binding of phosphate is essential for neuroprotection in vivo.

  3. Rates of, and risk factors for, severe infections in patients with systemic autoimmune diseases receiving biological agents off-label

    PubMed Central

    2011-01-01

    Introduction The purpose of this observational study was to analyze the rates, characteristics and associated risk factors of severe infections in patients with systemic autoimmune diseases (SAD) who were treated off-label with biological agents in daily practice. Methods The BIOGEAS registry is an ongoing Spanish prospective cohort study investigating the long-term safety and efficacy of the off-label use of biological agents in adult patients with severe, refractory SAD. Severe infections were defined according to previous studies as those that required intravenous treatment or that led to hospitalization or death. Patients contributed person-years of follow-up for the period in which they were treated with biological agents. Results A total of 344 patients with SAD treated with biological agents off-label were included in the Registry until July 2010. The first biological therapies included rituximab in 264 (77%) patients, infliximab in 37 (11%), etanercept in 21 (6%), adalimumab in 19 (5%), and 'other' agents in 3 (1%). Forty-five severe infections occurred in 37 patients after a mean follow-up of 26.76 months. These infections resulted in four deaths. The crude rate of severe infections was 90.9 events/1000 person-years (112.5 for rituximab, 76.9 for infliximab, 66.9 for adalimumab and 30.5 for etanercept respectively). In patients treated with more than two courses of rituximab, the crude rate of severe infection was 226.4 events/1000 person-years. A pathogen was identified in 24 (53%) severe infections. The most common sites of severe infection were the lower respiratory tract (39%), bacteremia/sepsis (20%) and the urinary tract (16%). There were no significant differences relating to gender, SAD, agent, other previous therapies, number of previous immunosuppressive agents received or other therapies administered concomitantly. Cox regression analysis showed that age (P = 0.015) was independently associated with an increased risk of severe infection

  4. In Between or in the Middle of Everything — How to Find the Pathway for a Small Department Library During Multiple Internal and External Change Factors

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Akerholt, L. N.; Christensen, A.

    2010-10-01

    The Astrophysics Library is one of the smallest libraries at the University of Oslo, serving 10 masters students and approximately 50 academic employees at the Department of Theoretical Astrophysics. But the small size does not reduce the pressure on the institution when it comes to internal and external change factors. Change factors are understood as circumstances which influence the department library, but are outside the control of normal library routines.In this paper we explore these change factors and try to establish a strategy to find our "path" for the future. We find that internal change factors are quite easily handled, given enough time and proper funding, while the nature of external change factors makes it harder to decide on a future course.To illustrate the pressure exerted on the department library we give a brief summation of the challenges we have met regarding internal and external change factors. Our experiences indicate that we should establish closer cooperation with the academic staff and students, and also call for an improved communication strategy towards other institutions such as the Museum of University History as well as the National Library of Norway. We explore new forms of communication and suggest developing these in collaboration with the academic staff.

  5. High HIV Burden in Men Who Have Sex with Men across Colombia’s Largest Cities: Findings from an Integrated Biological and Behavioral Surveillance Study

    PubMed Central

    Rubio Mendoza, Martha Lucía; Jacobson, Jerry Owen; Morales-Miranda, Sonia; Sierra Alarcón, Clara Ángela; Luque Núñez, Ricardo

    2015-01-01

    Background Among Latin America’s concentrated HIV epidemics, little is known about men who have sex with men (MSM) in Colombia, the region’s third largest country. To date, surveillance studies have been limited to Bogota, while 80% of HIV cases and deaths originate from Colombia’s other cities and departments. The extent to which interventions should prioritize MSM outside of Bogota is unknown. Methods We recruited 2603 MSM using respondent-driven sampling from seven of Colombia’s largest cities. HIV prevalence was estimated by site from dried blood spot samples. Behavioral data were collected through face-to-face interviews and risk factors for HIV infection analyzed using weighted, multi-level logistical regression models accounting for recruitment patterns. Results Across cities, HIV prevalence averaged 15%, varied from 6% to 24% and was highest in Cali, Bogota, and Barranquilla. In the past 12 months, 65% of MSM had ≥ 5 casual male partners and 23% had a female partner. Across partnerships (i.e., casual, stable, and commercial), the proportion of MSM engaging in unprotected sex was ≥ 52% with male partners and ≥ 66% with female partners. Self-reported history of STI (24%) and past-year illicit drug use (38%) were also common. In multivariate analysis, age ≥ 35 (adjusted odds ratio [AOR], 19.2) and 25–39 (AOR, 5.6) relative to ≤ 18–24 years, identifying as homosexual relative to heterosexual (AOR 0.1), meeting casual partners on the Internet (adjusted odds ratio [AOR], 3.1) and age of sexual debut of ≤ 13 years (AOR, 3.1) predicted HIV infection. HIV testing and prevention messaging reached just 24% of MSM in the past year. Conclusions Findings support consistently elevated HIV burden among MSM throughout Colombia’s largest cities and a need for enhanced behavioral prevention and HIV testing, emphasizing men who use the Internet as well as physical venues to meet sex partners. PMID:26252496

  6. Hot ortho-biologic topics at AAOS 2011†: platelet-rich plasma and related growth factors generate excitement.

    PubMed

    Hoggatt, Julie

    2011-06-01

    Several hot topics relating to ortho-biologics were discussed at the 2011 Annual Meeting of the American Academy of Orthopedic Surgery (AAOS) in San Diego this February. Injecting a patient's own platelet-rich plasma (PRP) prior to orthopedic surgery was an important topic, and had its own forum devoted to debating its uses and merit. PRP use has been promoted by equipment companies such as MTF Sports Medicine, Biomet, and Arteriocyte, but others are likely to take advantage of the trend of increasing PRP use by developing a proprietary injectable that mixes PRP with certain growth factors. One possible addition would be a recombinant platelet-derived growth factor (rhPDGF-BB, becaplermin) being developed by BioMimetic Therapeutics for its bone graft product. On the topic of viscosupplementation, the US's only single-injection product, Genzyme's SynviscOne®, was noticeably missing from the exhibit hall at AAOS, but an abstract comparing the single- and multiple-injection viscosupplementation techniques demonstrated that single-injection acts faster and is longer lasting. New bone morphogenetic protein formulations may improve healing of bone fractures. Molecular diagnostics may be used to predict periprosthetic joint infection, allowing orthopedic medicine to be more personalized. A diagnostic that can be used on a large scale has not yet been identified. † Adapted and reproduced from Hoggatt J. Hot Ortho-Biologic Topics at AAOS 2011: Platelet-Rich Plasma and Related Growth Factors Generate Excitement. inThought Research, 2011 Feb 28.

  7. Indirect role of microRNAs and transcription factors in the regulation of important cancer genes: A network biology approach.

    PubMed

    Ahmadi, M; Jafari, R; Marashi, S A; Farazmand, A

    2015-10-30

    Cancer is one of the leading causes of death worldwide. Although the mechanisms of gene regulation in cancer have been the subject of intense investigation during the last decades, the precise role of regulatory processes in cancer is largely unknown. More specifically, it is not completely understood how microRNAs and transcription factors regulate and influence the cancer-related processes. In the present study, using cancer-specific biological networks we examine the role of microRNAs and transcription factors (TFs) in regulation of important cancer genes. The importance measures which are used in this study consider both network structure information and biological data on miRNA- and TF-based gene regulation. By analyzing cancer-specific PPI, signaling and metabolic networks, it was shown that microRNAs and transcription factors tend to regulate those genes which are in the neighborhood of important components of cancer-specific PPI, signaling, and metabolic networks. The role of microRNAs was found to be particularly important, which confirms our previously-published results on the importance of microRNAs in detecting important network components. Moreover, we highlight that the miRNAs appear to apply their function via regulating the "neighbors" of important cancer genes, which implies their indirect role in cancer, and presumably, in fine-tuning the effect of other cancer-related genes.

  8. Alcohol use among adults in Uganda: findings from the countrywide non-communicable diseases risk factor cross-sectional survey

    PubMed Central

    Kabwama, Steven Ndugwa; Ndyanabangi, Sheila; Mutungi, Gerald; Wesonga, Ronald; Bahendeka, Silver K.; Guwatudde, David

    2016-01-01

    Background There are limited data on levels of alcohol use in most sub-Saharan African countries. Objective We analyzed data from Uganda's non-communicable diseases risk factor survey conducted in 2014, to identify alcohol use prevalence and associated factors. Design The survey used the World Health Organization STEPS tool to collect data, including the history of alcohol use. Alcohol users were categorized into low-, medium-, and high-end users. Participants were also classified as having an alcohol-use-related disorder if, over the past 12 months, they were unable to stop drinking alcohol once they had started drinking, and/or failed to do what was normally expected of them because of drinking alcohol, and/or needed an alcoholic drink first in the morning to get going after a heavy drinking session the night before. Weighted logistic regression analysis was used to identify factors associated with medium- to high-end alcohol use. Results Of the 3,956 participants, 1,062 (26.8%) were current alcohol users, including 314 (7.9%) low-end, 246 (6.2%) medium-end, and 502 (12.7%) high-end users. A total of 386 (9.8%) were classified as having an alcohol-use-related disorder. Male participants were more likely to be medium- to high-end alcohol users compared to females; adjusted odds ratio (AOR)=2.34 [95% confidence interval (CI)=1.88–2.91]. Compared to residents in eastern Uganda, participants in central and western Uganda were more likely to be medium- to high-end users; AOR=1.47 (95% CI=1.01–2.12) and AOR=1.89 (95% CI=1.31–2.72), respectively. Participants aged 30–49 years and those aged 50–69 years were more likely to be medium- to high-end alcohol users, compared to those aged 18–29 years, AOR=1.49 (95% CI=1.16–1.91) and AOR=2.08 (95% CI=1.52–2.84), respectively. Conclusions The level of alcohol use among adults in Uganda is high, and 9.8% of the adult population has an alcohol-use-related disorder. PMID:27491961

  9. Sexual desire, distress, and associated factors in premenopausal women: preliminary findings from the hypoactive sexual desire disorder registry for women.

    PubMed

    Connor, Megan K; Maserejian, Nancy N; De Rogatis, Leonard; Meston, Cindy M; Gerstenberger, Eric P; Rosen, Raymond C

    2011-01-01

    This article presents data from a validation sample of 390 premenopausal women clinically diagnosed with hypoactive sexual desire disorder (HSDD) enrolled in the HSDD Registry for Women. Participants completed validated measures of sexual distress (e.g., Female Sexual Distress Scale Revised, Question 13) and sexual function including desire (e.g., Female Sexual Function Index). Results showed that lower levels of desire in these women were associated with diminished sexual satisfaction, increased sexually related distress, and fatigue or stress in the women's lives. In addition, the level of distress related to sexual desire decreased with age. The authors conclude that even among women with clinically diagnosed HSDD, the level of sexually related distress varies with situational factors, such as stress and fatigue.

  10. Sampler of findings from the 1986 national mortality followback survey on risk factors, disability, and health care.

    PubMed

    Seeman, I

    1992-01-01

    The National Center for Health Statistics conducted a mortality followback survey of a national probability sample drawn from all deaths of U.S. adults in 1986 and an oversampling of deaths of persons with selected characteristics. Responses were received from the next of kin or other close relatives of 16,598 adult decedents (88.6 percent). Data were collected through a mail questionnaire, followed by telephone or personal interviews with nonrespondents. Data were also collected from the hospitals and other health care facilities used by the decedent in the last year of life. Illustrative results are presented on the four major subject areas studied: risk factors for premature death, disability and care in the last year of life, socioeconomic differentials, and the reliability of selected items reported on the death certificate. Researchers are encouraged to explore the data tape to pursue indepth epidemiologic studies.

  11. Design of Recombinant Stem Cell Factor macrophage Colony Stimulating Factor Fusion Proteins and their Biological Activity In Vitro

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chen, Tao; Yang, Jie; Wang, Yuelang; Zhan, Chenyang; Zang, Yuhui; Qin, Junchuan

    2005-05-01

    Stem cell factor (SCF) and macrophage colony stimulating factor (M-CSF) can act in synergistic way to promote the growth of mononuclear phagocytes. SCF-M-CSF fusion proteins were designed on the computer using the Homology and Biopolymer modules of the software packages InsightII. Several existing crystal structures were used as templates to generate models of the complexes of receptor with fusion protein. The structure rationality of the fusion protein incorporated a series of flexible linker peptide was analyzed on InsightII system. Then, a suitable peptide GGGGSGGGGSGG was chosen for the fusion protein. Two recombinant SCF-M-CSF fusion proteins were generated by construction of a plasmid in which the coding regions of human SCF (1-165aa) and M-CSF (1-149aa) cDNA were connected by this linker peptide coding sequence followed by subsequent expression in insect cell. The results of Western blot and activity analysis showed that these two recombinant fusion proteins existed as a dimer with a molecular weight of 84 KD under non-reducing conditions and a monomer of 42 KD at reducing condition. The results of cell proliferation assays showed that each fusion protein induced a dose-dependent proliferative response. At equimolar concentration, SCF/M-CSF was about 20 times more potent than the standard monomeric SCF in stimulating TF-1 cell line growth, while M-CSF/SCF was 10 times of monomeric SCF. No activity difference of M-CSF/SCF or SCF/M-CSF to M-CSF (at same molar) was found in stimulating the HL-60 cell linear growth. The synergistic effect of SCF and M-CSF moieties in the fusion proteins was demonstrated by the result of clonogenic assay performed with human bone mononuclear, in which both SCF/M-CSF and M-CSF/SCF induced much higher number of CFU-M than equimolar amount of SCF or M-CSF or that of two cytokines mixture.

  12. Structural characterization and biological activity of recombinant human epidermal growth factor proteins with different N-terminal sequences.

    PubMed

    Svoboda, M; Bauhofer, A; Schwind, P; Bade, E; Rasched, I; Przybylski, M

    1994-05-18

    The primary structures and molecular homogeneity of recombinant human epidermal growth factors from different suppliers were characterized and their biological activities evaluated by a standard DNA synthesis assay. Molecular weight determinations using 252Cf-plasma-desorption and electrospray mass spectrometry in combination with N- and C-terminal sequence analysis and determination of intramolecular disulfide bridges revealed that one recombinant protein had the correct human-identical structure (54 aa residues; 6347 Da). In contrast, a second recombinant protein (7020 Da) was found to contain a pentapeptide (KKYPR) insert following its N-terminal methionine. This structural variant showed a significant reduction in its capacity to stimulate DNA synthesis.

  13. Indoor Thermal Factors and Symptoms in Office Workers: Findings from the U.S. EPA BASE Study

    SciTech Connect

    Mendell, Mark; Mirer, Anna

    2008-06-01

    Some prior research in office buildings has associated higher indoor temperatures even within the recommended thermal comfort range with increased worker symptoms. We reexamined this relationship in data from 95 office buildings in the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency's Building Assessment Survey and Evaluation (BASE) Study. We investigated relationships between building-related symptoms and thermal metrics constructed from real-time measurements. We estimated odds ratios (ORs) and 95percent confidence intervals in adjusted logistic regression models with general estimating equations, overall and by season. Winter indoor temperatures spanned the recommended winter comfort range; summer temperatures were mostly colder than the recommended summer range. Increasing indoor temperatures, overall, were associated with increases in few symptoms. Higher winter indoor temperatures, however, were associated with increases in all symptoms analyzed. Higher summer temperatures, above 23oC, were associated with decreases in most symptoms. Humidity ratio, a metric of absolute humidity, showed few clear associations. Thus, increased symptoms with higher temperatures within the thermal comfort range were found only in winter. In summer, buildings were overcooled, and only the higher observed temperatures were within the comfort range; these were associated with decreased symptoms. Confirmation of these findings would suggest that thermal management guidelines consider health effects as well as comfort.

  14. Factors affecting the flight capacity of Tetrastichus planipennisi (Hymenoptera: Eulophidae), a classical biological control agent of Agrilus planipennis (Coleoptera: Buprestidae).

    PubMed

    Fahrner, Samuel J; Lelito, Jonathan P; Blaedow, Karen; Heimpel, George E; Aukema, Brian H

    2014-12-01

    The dispersal characteristics of a biological control agent can have direct implications on the ability of that agent to control populations of a target host. Tetrastichus planipennisi Yang (Hymenoptera: Eulophidae) is a parasitic wasp native to eastern Asia that has been introduced into the United States as part of a classical biological control program against the emerald ash borer Agrilus planipennis Fairmaire (Coleoptera: Buprestidae). We used computer-monitored flight mills to investigate the role of age, feeding status, mating status, and size on the flight capacity of female T. planipennisi over a 24-h period. We also compared flight capacity between sexes. Flight distance of female T. planipennisi representative of populations released in the biological control program averaged 1.26 km in 24 h with a maximum flight of just over 7 km. Median flight distance, however, was 422 m. The flight capacity of females fed a honey-water solution was 41× that of females provided only water, who flew very little. Larger females were capable of flying farther distances, but age did not affect the flight capacity of females up to 70 d posteclosion. Females dispersed 6× farther than did their smaller, male counterparts. The implications of our findings to host-parasitoid interactions and release protocols for distributing T. planipennisi are discussed.

  15. How do etiological factors can explain the different clinical features of patients with differentiated thyroid cancer and their histopathological findings?

    PubMed

    Pagano, Loredana; Mele, Chiara; Arpaia, Debora; Samà, Maria Teresa; Caputo, Marina; Ippolito, Serena; Peirce, Carmela; Prodam, Flavia; Valente, Guido; Ciancia, Giuseppe; Aimaretti, Gianluca; Biondi, Bernadette

    2017-04-01

    The aim was to retrospectively analyse the clinical-histopathological characteristics of patients with newly diagnosis of differentiated thyroid cancer (DTC) referred to two Italian centres, one in Northern and the other in Southern Italy, between 2000 and 2013. 1081 patients were included and subdivided into two groups: group A (474 patients from Novara) and group B (607 patients from Naples). The group A came from the industrial area of Novara, while the Group B came from the areas around Vesuvius and Campi Flegrei. The two groups were comparable for iodine levels, body mass index, diagnostic timing and clinical procedures. For all patients, demographic and clinical data were collected. No difference was found in gender, whereas the age at diagnosis was later in the group A (group A 53.1 ± 15.16 years, group B 41.9 ± 14.25 years, p < 0.001). In both groups, the most frequent histotype was papillary thyroid cancer (PTC) with prevalence of follicular variant in group A (p < 0.0001) and classical variant in group B (p < 0.0001). Aggressive histological features were mainly seen in group A (bilaterality p < 0.0001, multifocality p < 0.0001 and thyroid capsular invasion p < 0.0001). Microcarcinomas were more frequent in group A (p < 0.0001) but mostly characterized by bilaterality (p < 0.001) and multifocality (p < 0.04). In both groups, tumour-associated thyroiditis showed a significant increase over the years (group A p < 0.05, group B p < 0.04). Environmental factors could justify the differences found in our study. These preliminary data should stimulate the need for an Italian Cancer Registry of DTC in order to allow an epidemiological characterization, allowing the identification of specific etiological factors and an improvement in the management of the disease.

  16. Magnitude of Cardiovascular Risk Factors in Rural and Urban Areas in Benin: Findings from a Nationwide Steps Survey

    PubMed Central

    Houehanou, Yessito Corine Nadège; Lacroix, Philippe; Mizehoun, Gbedecon Carmelle; Preux, Pierre-Marie; Marin, Benoit; Houinato, Dismand Stephan

    2015-01-01

    Data on variations in the frequency of cardiovascular risk factors (CVRF) in sub-Saharan populations are limited, particularly with regard to Benin. Objective To describe and compare the prevalences of CVRF in urban and rural populations of Benin. Methods Subjects were drawn from participants in the Benin Steps survey, a nationwide cross-sectional study conducted in 2008 using the World Health Organisation (WHO) stepwise approach to surveillance of chronic disease risk factors. Subjects aged above 24 and below 65 years were recruited using a five-stage random sampling process within households. Sociodemographic data, behavioral data along with medical history of high blood pressure and diabetes mellitus were collected in Step 1. Anthropometric parameters and blood pressure were measured in Step 2. Blood glucose and cholesterol levels were measured in Step 3. CVRF were defined according to WHO criteria. The prevalences of CVRF were assessed and the relationships between each CVRF and the area of residence (urban or rural), were evaluated using multivariable logistic regression models. Results Of the 6762 subjects included in the study, 2271 were from urban areas and 4491 were from rural areas. High blood pressure was more prevalent in urban than in rural areas, 29.9% (95% confidence intervals (95% CI): 27.4, 32.5) and 27.5% (95% CI: 25.6, 29.5) respectively, p = 0.001 (p-value after adjustment for age and gender). Obesity was more prevalent in urban than in rural areas, 16.4% (95% CI: 14.4, 18.4) and 5.9% (95% CI: 5.1, 6.7), p<0.001. Diabetes was more prevalent in urban than in rural areas, 3.3% (95% CI: 2.1, 4.5) and 1.8% (95% CI: 1.2, 2.4), p = 0.004. Conversely, daily tobacco smoking was more prevalent in rural than in urban areas, 9.3% (95% CI: 8.1, 10.4) and 4.3% (95% CI: 3.1, 5.6), p<0.001. No differences in raised blood cholesterol were noted between the two groups. Conclusion According to our data, CVRF are prevalent among adults in Benin, and variations

  17. Effects of estrogen receptor antagonist on biological behavior and expression of growth factors in the prolactinoma MMQ cell line.

    PubMed

    Lv, Hongtao; Li, Chuzhong; Gui, Songbai; Sun, Meizhen; Li, Dan; Zhang, Yazhuo

    2011-04-01

    The relationship between estrogen and pituitary prolactinoma is well documented. The biological effects of estrogen are mainly mediated by estrogen receptor α (ERα). Several lines of evidence demonstrate that growth factors such as pituitary tumor transforming gene (PTTG), basic fibroblast growth factor (bFGF), transforming growth factor β1 (TGFβ1), transforming growth factor β3 (TGFβ3), and transforming growth factor β receptor type II (TGFβRII) play an important role in prolactinoma pathogenesis induced by estrogen, but the relationship between ERα and such growth factors is still unclear. The aims of this study are to investigate the functional role of ERα in proliferation, prolactin (PRL) secretion, and expression of the above-mentioned growth factors in MMQ cells in the absence of estrogen and to discuss the feasibility of using an estrogen receptor antagonist to treat prolactinoma. Fulvestrant, a "pure" antiestrogen without any estrogen-like activity, was used to block expression of ERα in the MMQ cell line. Proliferation and PRL secretion of MMQ cells were measured using CellTiter 96(®) AQueous One Solution Cell Proliferation Assay (MTS) and the enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA) method. Levels of ERα, PTTG, bFGF, TGFβ1, TGFβ3, and TGFβRII were analyzed by real-time polymerase chain reaction (PCR) and Western blot. Fulvestrant significantly inhibited cell proliferation (up to 60.80%) and PRL secretion (up to 77.95%), and changed expression of TGFβ3 and TGFβRII in the absence of estrogen. In conclusion, ERα plays an important functional role in proliferation and PRL secretion of pituitary prolactinomas and also can change expression of some growth factors even under the condition of no estrogen. Fulvestrant could potentially be an effective therapy for treating such tumors.

  18. Common Virulence Factors and Tissue Targets of Entomopathogenic Bacteria for Biological Control of Lepidopteran Pests

    PubMed Central

    Castagnola, Anaïs; Stock, S. Patricia

    2014-01-01

    This review focuses on common insecticidal virulence factors from entomopathogenic bacteria with special emphasis on two insect pathogenic bacteria Photorhabdus (Proteobacteria: Enterobacteriaceae) and Bacillus (Firmicutes: Bacillaceae). Insect pathogenic bacteria of diverse taxonomic groups and phylogenetic origin have been shown to have striking similarities in the virulence factors they produce. It has been suggested that the detection of phage elements surrounding toxin genes, horizontal and lateral gene transfer events, and plasmid shuffling occurrences may be some of the reasons that virulence factor genes have so many analogs throughout the bacterial kingdom. Comparison of virulence factors of Photorhabdus, and Bacillus, two bacteria with dissimilar life styles opens the possibility of re-examining newly discovered toxins for novel tissue targets. For example, nematodes residing in the hemolymph may release bacteria with virulence factors targeting neurons or neuromuscular junctions. The first section of this review focuses on toxins and their context in agriculture. The second describes the mode of action of toxins from common entomopathogens and the third draws comparisons between Gram positive and Gram negative bacteria. The fourth section reviews the implications of the nervous system in biocontrol. PMID:24634779

  19. Systems Pharmacogenomics Finds RUNX1 Is an Aspirin-Responsive Transcription Factor Linked to Cardiovascular Disease and Colon Cancer.

    PubMed

    Voora, Deepak; Rao, A Koneti; Jalagadugula, Gauthami S; Myers, Rachel; Harris, Emily; Ortel, Thomas L; Ginsburg, Geoffrey S

    2016-09-01

    Aspirin prevents cardiovascular disease and colon cancer; however aspirin's inhibition of platelet COX-1 only partially explains its diverse effects. We previously identified an aspirin response signature (ARS) in blood consisting of 62 co-expressed transcripts that correlated with aspirin's effects on platelets and myocardial infarction (MI). Here we report that 60% of ARS transcripts are regulated by RUNX1 - a hematopoietic transcription factor - and 48% of ARS gene promoters contain a RUNX1 binding site. Megakaryocytic cells exposed to aspirin and its metabolite (salicylic acid, a weak COX-1 inhibitor) showed up regulation in the RUNX1 P1 isoform and MYL9, which is transcriptionally regulated by RUNX1. In human subjects, RUNX1 P1 expression in blood and RUNX1-regulated platelet proteins, including MYL9, were aspirin-responsive and associated with platelet function. In cardiovascular disease patients RUNX1 P1 expression was associated with death or MI. RUNX1 acts as a tumor suppressor gene in gastrointestinal malignancies. We show that RUNX1 P1 expression is associated with colon cancer free survival suggesting a role for RUNX1 in aspirin's protective effect in colon cancer. Our studies reveal an effect of aspirin on RUNX1 and gene expression that may additionally explain aspirin's effects in cardiovascular disease and cancer.

  20. Is low self-esteem a risk factor for depression? Findings from a longitudinal study of Mexican-origin youth.

    PubMed

    Orth, Ulrich; Robins, Richard W; Widaman, Keith F; Conger, Rand D

    2014-02-01

    We examined the relation between low self-esteem and depression using longitudinal data from a sample of 674 Mexican-origin early adolescents who were assessed at age 10 and 12 years. Results supported the vulnerability model, which states that low self-esteem is a prospective risk factor for depression. Moreover, results suggested that the vulnerability effect of low self-esteem is driven, for the most part, by general evaluations of worth (i.e., global self-esteem), rather than by domain-specific evaluations of academic competence, physical appearance, and competence in peer relationships. The only domain-specific self-evaluation that showed a prospective effect on depression was honesty-trustworthiness. The vulnerability effect of low self-esteem held for male and female adolescents, for adolescents born in the United States versus Mexico, and across different levels of pubertal status. Finally, the vulnerability effect held when we controlled for several theoretically relevant 3rd variables (i.e., social support, maternal depression, stressful events, and relational victimization) and for interactive effects between self-esteem and the 3rd variables. The present study contributes to an emerging understanding of the link between self-esteem and depression and provides much needed data on the antecedents of depression in ethnic minority populations.

  1. Factors that predict financial sustainability of community coalitions: five years of findings from the PROSPER partnership project.

    PubMed

    Greenberg, Mark T; Feinberg, Mark E; Johnson, Lesley E; Perkins, Daniel F; Welsh, Janet A; Spoth, Richard L

    2015-01-01

    This study is a longitudinal investigation of the Promoting School-community-university Partnerships to Enhance Resilience (PROSPER) partnership model designed to evaluate the level of sustainability funding by community prevention teams, including which factors impact teams' generation of sustainable funding. Community teams were responsible for choosing, implementing with quality, and sustaining evidence-based programs (EBPs) intended to reduce substance misuse and promote positive youth and family development. Fourteen US rural communities and small towns were studied. Data were collected from PROSPER community team members (N = 164) and prevention coordinators (N = 10) over a 5-year period. Global and specific aspects of team functioning were assessed over six waves. Outcome measures were the total funds (cash and in-kind) raised to implement prevention programs. All 14 community teams were sustained for the first 5 years. However, there was substantial variability in the amount of funds raised, and these differences were predicted by earlier and concurrent team functioning and by team sustainability planning. Given the sufficient infrastructure and ongoing technical assistance provided by the PROSPER partnership model, local sustainability of EBPs is achievable.

  2. Factors underlying inadequate parents’ awareness regarding pediatrics immunization: findings of cross-sectional study in Mosul- Iraq

    PubMed Central

    2014-01-01

    Background Since last 100 years, immunization rate is one of the best public health outcome and service indicators. However, the immunization system is still imperfect; there are many countries that still have unvaccinated children. Parental decisions regarding immunization are very important to improve immunization rate. The aim of this study is to evaluate the association between parental knowledge-practice (KP) regarding immunization with family and immunization providers’ factors. Methods This is a prospective cross-sectional study design. Immunization knowledge and practices among 528 Iraqi parents were evaluated through validated questionnaire. Familial data and immunization provider’s characteristics were collected from parents through interview. Results More than half of respondents/study population (66.1%) have adequate knowledge- practice scores. Significant associations were noted for knowledge-practice groups with father’s education level, mother’s education level, mother’s age at delivery, number of preschool children, parents gender, family income, provider types, and birth place (p < 0.05). Conclusion Immunization campaigns and awareness are required to improve parents’ knowledge and practice regarding immunization. The study results reinforce recommendations for use of educational programmes to improve the immunization knowledge and practice. PMID:24485194

  3. Is Low Self-Esteem a Risk Factor for Depression? Findings from a Longitudinal Study of Mexican-Origin Youth

    PubMed Central

    Orth, Ulrich; Robins, Richard W.; Widaman, Keith F.; Conger, Rand D.

    2013-01-01

    We examined the relation between low self-esteem and depression using longitudinal data from a sample of 674 Mexican-origin early adolescents who were assessed at age 10 and 12 years. Results supported the vulnerability model, which states that low self-esteem is a prospective risk factor for depression. Moreover, results suggested that the vulnerability effect of low self-esteem is driven, for the most part, by general evaluations of worth (i.e., global self-esteem), rather than by domain-specific evaluations of academic competence, physical appearance, and competence in peer relationships. The only domain-specific self-evaluation that showed a prospective effect on depression was honesty–trustworthiness. The vulnerability effect of low self-esteem held for male and female adolescents, for adolescents born in the United States vs. Mexico, and across different levels of pubertal status. Finally, the vulnerability effect held when we controlled for several theoretically relevant third variables (i.e., social support, maternal depression, stressful events, and relational victimization), and for interactive effects between self-esteem and the third variables. The present study contributes to an emerging understanding of the link between self-esteem and depression and provides much needed data on the antecedents of depression in ethnic minority populations. PMID:23895172

  4. Sociodemographic differentials of selected noncommunicable diseases risk factors among adults in Matlab, Bangladesh: findings from a WHO STEPS survey.

    PubMed

    Razzaque, Abdur; Nahar, Lutfun; Abu Haider Mohammad Golam Mustafa; Karar Zunaid Ahsan; Mohammad Shafiqul Islam; Yunus, Mohammad

    2011-04-01

    The study examined noncommunicable diseases risk factors among adults 25 to 64 years old of the Matlab Health and Demographic Surveillance System using World Health Organization STEP-wise methodology. The prevalence of smoking was found to be very high for males (53.9%) and it increased initially with age, whereas smoking was almost nil for females (0.8%). About 30% each of males and females used smokeless tobacco and its consumption increased with age. Consumption of vegetable/fruit is very low in this population (90% below recommended level), whereas one third of males and two thirds of female have low levels of physical activities. The raised blood pressure was more prevalent among females than in males (21.0% vs 12.5%, respectively) and the same was true for being overweight (13.9% vs 10.3%, respectively). Raised blood pressure increased with age but overweight did not vary by age for males, whereas it increased initially for females. Smoking (males) and use of smokeless tobacco decreased with increase in education, but both blood pressure and overweight increased.

  5. Factors associated with exclusive breastfeeding in Timor-Leste: findings from Demographic and Health Survey 2009-2010.

    PubMed

    Khanal, Vishnu; da Cruz, Jonia Lourenca Nunes Brites; Karkee, Rajendra; Lee, Andy H

    2014-04-22

    Exclusive breastfeeding is known to have nutritional and health benefits. This study investigated factors associated with exclusive breastfeeding among infants aged five months or less in Timor-Leste. The latest data from the national Demographic and Health Survey 2009-2010 were analyzed by binary logistic regression. Of the 975 infants included in the study, overall 49% (95% confidence interval 45.4% to 52.7%) were exclusively breastfed. The exclusive breastfeeding prevalence declined with increasing infant age, from 68.0% at less than one month to 24.9% at five months. Increasing infant age, mothers with a paid occupation, who perceived their newborn as non-average size, and residence in the capital city Dili, were associated with a lower likelihood of exclusive breastfeeding. On the other hand, women who could decide health-related matters tended to breastfeed exclusively, which was not the case for others whose decisions were made by someone else. The results suggested the need of breastfeeding promotion programs to improve the exclusive breastfeeding rate. Antenatal counseling, peer support network, and home visits by health workers could be feasible options to promote exclusive breastfeeding given that the majority of births occur at home.

  6. Magnesium and cardiovascular biology: an important link between cardiovascular risk factors and atherogenesis.

    PubMed

    Altura, B M; Altura, B T

    1995-01-01

    In this review, a rationale is presented for how hypercholesterolemia, hypertension, diabetes mellitus, end-stage renal disease, renal dialysis, and prolonged stress can all lead to atherosclerosis, ischemic heart disease, and stroke. The data indicate that Mg deficiency caused either by poor diet and/or errors in Mg metabolism may be a missing link between diverse cardiovascular risk factors and atherosclerosis. Data from our laboratories and others indicate that reduction in extracellular and intracellular free Mg ions (Mg2+) can induce an entire array of pathophysiological phenomena known to be important in atherogenesis, that is, vasospasm, increased vascular reactivity, elevation in [Ca2+]i, formation of proinflammatory agents, oxygen radicals, platelet aggegation, reduction in cardiac bioenergetics, cardiac failure, oxidation of lipoproteins, gender-related modulation of endothelial-derived relaxing factor/NO, changes in membrane fatty acid saturation, changes in membrane plasmalogens and N-phospholipids (suggesting changes in intracellular phospholipid signals), and probably transcription factors.

  7. Mixing regime as a key factor to determine DON formation in drinking water biological treatment.

    PubMed

    Lu, Changqing; Li, Shuai; Gong, Song; Yuan, Shoujun; Yu, Xin

    2015-11-01

    Dissolved organic nitrogen (DON) can act as precursor of nitrogenous disinfection by-products formed during chlorination disinfection. The performances of biological fluidized bed (continuous stirred tank reactor, CSTR) and bio-ceramic filters (plug flow reactor, PFR) were compared in this study to investigate the influence of mixing regime on DON formation in drinking water treatment. In the shared influent, DON ranged from 0.71mgL(-1) to 1.20mgL(-1). The two biological fluidized bed reactors, named BFB1 (mechanical stirring) and BFB2 (air agitation), contained 0.12 and 0.19mgL(-1) DON in their effluents, respectively. Meanwhile, the bio-ceramic reactors, labeled as BCF1 (no aeration) and BCF2 (with aeration), had 1.02 and 0.81mgL(-1) DON in their effluents, respectively. Comparative results showed that the CSTR mixing regime significantly reduced DON formation. This particular reduction was further investigated in this study. The viable/total microbial biomass was determined with propidium monoazide quantitative polymerase chain reaction (PMA-qPCR) and qPCR, respectively. The results of the investigation demonstrated that the microbes in BFB2 had higher viability than those in BCF2. The viable bacteria decreased more sharply than the total bacteria along the media depth in BCF2, and DON in BCF2 accumulated in the deeper media. These phenomena suggested that mixing regime determined DON formation by influencing the distribution of viable, total biomass, and ratio of viable biomass to total biomass.

  8. Transcription factor co-repressors in cancer biology: roles and targeting.

    PubMed

    Battaglia, Sebastiano; Maguire, Orla; Campbell, Moray J

    2010-06-01

    Normal transcription displays a high degree of flexibility over the choice, timing and magnitude of mRNA expression levels that tend to oscillate and cycle. These processes allow for combinatorial actions, feedback control and fine-tuning. A central role has emerged for the transcriptional co-repressor proteins such as NCOR1, NCOR2/SMRT, CoREST and CTBPs, to control the actions of many transcriptional factors, in large part, by recruitment and activation of a range of chromatin remodeling enzymes. Thus, co-repressors and chromatin remodeling factors are recruited to transcription factors at specific promoter/enhancer regions and execute changes in the chromatin structure. The specificity of this recruitment is controlled in a spatial-temporal manner. By playing a central role in transcriptional control, as they move and target transcription factors, co-repressors act as a key driver in the epigenetic economy of the nucleus. Co-repressor functions are selectively distorted in malignancy, by both loss and gain of function and contribute to the generation of transcriptional rigidity. Features of transcriptional rigidity apparent in cancer cells include the distorted signaling of nuclear receptors and the WNTs/beta-catenin axis. Understanding and predicting the consequences of altered co-repressor expression patterns in cancer cells has diagnostic and prognostic significance, and also have the capacity to be targeted through selective epigenetic therapies.

  9. Efficient synthesis of human type alpha transforming growth factor: its physical and biological characterization.

    PubMed Central

    Tam, J P; Sheikh, M A; Solomon, D S; Ossowski, L

    1986-01-01

    Human transforming growth factor type alpha (TGF-alpha) was synthesized by a stepwise solid-phase method with an overall yield of 26%. Synthetic TGF-alpha, consisting of 50 amino acid residues deduced from a cDNA precursor sequence, was purified in a single HPLC step. The homogeneity and primary structure were confirmed by several criteria including Edman degradation and mass spectrometry. Synthetic TGF-alpha was as active as murine epidermal growth factor in binding to the epidermal growth factor receptor and in stimulation of anchorage-dependent and of anchorage-independent growth of normal indicator cells in culture. Synthetic TGF-alpha stimulated plasminogen activator production in A 431 and HeLa cells; the stimulation was similar to that induced by epidermal growth factor. Furthermore, synthetic human TGF-alpha showed similar immunoreactivity when compared with rat TGF-alpha. Thus, the 50-amino acid TGF-alpha is likely to be the bioactive principle produced and secreted by tumor cell lines. PMID:3490662

  10. Physical and biological factors influencing environmental sources of fecal indicator bacteria in surface water

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Whitman, Richard L.; Nevers, Meredith B.; Przybyla-Kelly, Katarzyna; Byappanahalli, Muruleedhara N.; Sadowsky, Michael J.; Whitman, Richard L.

    2011-01-01

    This paper describes the environmental populations of faecal indicator bacteria, and the processes by which these populations become nonpoint sources and influence nearshore water quality. The different possible sources of these indicator bacteria are presented. These include groundwater, springs and seeps, aquatic sediments, beach sand, birds, Cladophora and plant wrack. Also discussed are the environmental factors (moisture, sunlight, temperature and salinity) influencing their survival.

  11. Structural Biology of Tumor Necrosis Factor Demonstrated for Undergraduates Instruction by Computer Simulation

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Roy, Urmi

    2016-01-01

    This work presents a three-dimensional (3D) modeling exercise for undergraduate students in chemistry and health sciences disciplines, focusing on a protein-group linked to immune system regulation. Specifically, the exercise involves molecular modeling and structural analysis of tumor necrosis factor (TNF) proteins, both wild type and mutant. The…

  12. Association of serum intact fibroblast growth factor 23 with left ventricular mass and different echocardiographic findings in patients on hemodialysis

    PubMed Central

    Nassiri, Amir Ahmad; Safar-Pour, Reza; Ahmadi, Ali; Tohidi, Maryam; Kashani, Babak Sharif; Esfehani, Fatemeh; Alatab, Soudabeh

    2016-01-01

    Abstract Objectives To determine the association of fibroblast growth factor 23 (FGF23) with left ventricular hypertrophy (LVH) through the assessment of left ventricular (LV) mass and left ventricular mass index (LVMI) in patients on hemodialysis, this study was done. Methods All patients on hemodialysis who are older than 18 years and in whom hemodialysis vintage was at least 6 months were enrolled. All patients were on hemodialysis thrice a week for 4 h using low-flux dialysis filters, polysulfone membranes, reverse osmosis purified water, and bicarbonate-base hemodialysis solution. The exclusion criteria were any respiratory illness or pulmonary infection, cigarette smoking, and the presence of pericarditis or pericardial effusion. Additionally, patients with a known coronary artery disease, any form of cardiac arrhythmias, any cardiomyopathy or severe valvular heart disease diagnosed by echocardiography, acute congestive heart failure (CHF), and acute myocardial infarction were not included. Echocardiography was conducted by an experienced operator for all the enrolled patients using the ACUSON SC2000™ ultrasound system transducer (Siemens), with a frequency bandwidth of: 1.5–3.5 MHz. Patients were considered to have LVH if the LVMI was greater than 134 g/m2 for men and greater than 110 g/m2 for women. Results A total of 61 patients (19 female and 42 male) were enrolled to the study. Mean (± SD) age of the patients was 59.6 ± 13.1 years. The median duration of hemodialysis was 23 (range: 6–120) months. The median predialysis level of FGF23 was 1,977 pg/mL (range: 155–8,870). LVH was seen in 73.8% of the patients (n = 45) and of them 66.7% were male. There was a statistically significant direct correlation between FGF23 and left ventricle diameter in end systole (LVDs) (r = 0.29, P = 0.027). However, the association of FGF23 with LV mass, LVMI, and left ventricular ejection fraction (LVEF) was not significant. Conclusion This study does not show the

  13. Microbiological study of bacteriophage induction in the presence of chemical stress factors in enhanced biological phosphorus removal (EBPR).

    PubMed

    Motlagh, Amir Mohaghegh; Bhattacharjee, Ananda S; Goel, Ramesh

    2015-09-15

    Polyphosphate accumulating organisms (PAOs) are responsible for carrying the enhanced biological phosphorus removal (EBPR). Although the EBPR process is well studied, the failure of EBPR performance at both laboratory and full-scale plants has revealed a lack of knowledge about the ecological and microbiological aspects of EBPR processes. Bacteriophages are viruses that infect bacteria as their sole host. Bacteriophage infection of polyphosphate accumulating organisms (PAOs) has not been considered as a main contributor to biological phosphorus removal upsets. This study examined the effects of different stress factors on the dynamics of bacteriophages and the corresponding effects on the phosphorus removal performance in a lab-scale EBPR system. The results showed that copper (heavy metal), cyanide (toxic chemical), and ciprofloxacin (antibiotic), as three different anthropogenic stress factors, can induce phages integrated onto bacterial genomes (i.e. prophages) in an enriched EBPR sequencing batch reactor, resulting in a decrease in the polyphosphate kinase gene ppk1 clades copy number, phosphorus accumulation capacity, and phosphorus removal performance. This study opens opportunities for further research on the effects of bacteriophages in nutrient cycles both in controlled systems such as wastewater treatment plants and natural ecosystems.

  14. Evolutionary malignant resistance of cells to damaging factors as common biological defence mechanism in neoplastic development. Review of conception.

    PubMed

    Monceviciute-Eringiene, E

    2000-09-01

    Cells have some inborn resistance to harmful factors, which could be called physiological or natural resistance. The mechanisms of multixenobiotic resistance (MXR) and multidrug resistance (MDR) have common features in the formation of acquired resistance in microorganisms, carcinogenesis, tumour metastases and chemotherapy or irradiation. ATP-dependent membrane P-glycoprotein, as an MDR efflux pump, glutathione S-transferases and other products of evolutionary resistance-related genes arised for exportation and detoxification of cytotoxic xenobiotics and drugs are transmitted from bacteria to man. On the one hand, this evolutionary MXR as a common biological defence mechanism is a "driving" power to conserve homeostasis of cells, tissues and organs. On the other hand, mutation, selection and simplification of properties are the causes of functional and morphological changes in tumour cells which regress to a more primitive mode of existence (atavism) for adaptation to survival. In the present work are presented data on the forms of E. coli resistant to antibiotics and of sarcoma 45 resistant to alkylic preparations. They may be helpful in revealing the causes of resistance and acquired accelerated growth of cells. The development of tumours as fibromas 14-15 years following injection of a vital dye trypan blue into human skin supports our conception that neoplastic growth is a particular case of the evolutionary resistance of cells adapted to the damaging factors. So, tumour cells adopting the enhancement mechanisms of general biological persistent resistance, i. e. undergoing repeated cycles of malignancy enhancement, adapt themselves to survive under the changed unfavourable conditions.

  15. Factors influencing the utilization of research findings by health policy-makers in a developing country: the selection of Mali's essential medicines

    PubMed Central

    Albert, Michael A; Fretheim, Atle; Maïga, Diadié

    2007-01-01

    Background Research findings are increasingly being recognized as an important input in the formation of health policy. There is concern that research findings are not being utilized by health policy-makers to the extent that they could be. The factors influencing the utilization of various types of research by health policy-makers are beginning to emerge in the literature, however there is still little known about these factors in developing countries. The object of this study was to explore these factors by examining the policy-making process for a pharmaceutical policy common in developing countries; an essential medicines list. Methods A study of the selection and updating of Mali's national essential medicines list was undertaken using qualitative methods. In-depth semi-structured interviews and a natural group discussion were held with national policy-makers, most specifically members of the national commission that selects and updates the country's list. The resulting text was analyzed using a phenomenological approach. A document analysis was also performed. Results Several factors emerged from the textual data that appear to be influencing the utilization of health research findings for these policy-makers. These factors include: access to information, relevance of the research, use of research perceived as a time consuming process, trust in the research, authority of those who presented their view, competency in research methods, priority of research in the policy process, and accountability. Conclusion Improving the transfer of research to policy will require effort on the part of researchers, policy-makers, and third parties. This will include: collaboration between researchers and policy-makers, increased production and dissemination of relevant and useful research, and continued and improved technical support from networks and multi-national organizations. Policy-makers from developing countries will then be better equipped to make informed decisions

  16. Identification of Extracellular Matrix Components and Biological Factors in Micronized Dehydrated Human Amnion/Chorion Membrane.

    PubMed

    Lei, Jennifer; Priddy, Lauren B; Lim, Jeremy J; Massee, Michelle; Koob, Thomas J

    2017-02-01

    Objective: The use of bioactive extracellular matrix (ECM) grafts such as amniotic membranes is an attractive treatment option for enhancing wound repair. In this study, the concentrations, activity, and distribution of matrix components, growth factors, proteases, and inhibitors were evaluated in PURION(®) Processed, micronized, dehydrated human amnion/chorion membrane (dHACM; MiMedx Group, Inc.). Approach: ECM components in dHACM tissue were assessed by using immunohistochemical staining, and growth factors, cytokines, proteases, and inhibitors were quantified by using single and multiplex ELISAs. The activities of proteases that were native to the tissue were determined via gelatin zymography and EnzChek(®) activity assay. Results: dHACM tissue contained the ECM components collagens I and IV, hyaluronic acid, heparin sulfate proteoglycans, fibronectin, and laminin. In addition, numerous growth factors, cytokines, chemokines, proteases, and protease inhibitors that are known to play a role in the wound-healing process were quantified in dHACM. Though matrix metalloproteinases (MMPs) were present in dHACM tissues, inhibitors of MMPs overwhelmingly outnumbered the MMP enzymes by an overall molar ratio of 28:1. Protease activity assays revealed that the MMPs in the tissue existed primarily either in their latent form or complexed with inhibitors. Innovation: This is the first study to characterize components that function in wound healing, including inhibitor and protease content and activity, in micronized dHACM. Conclusion: A variety of matrix components and growth factors, as well as proteases and their inhibitors, were identified in micronized dHACM, providing a better understanding of how micronized dHACM tissue can be used to effectively promote wound repair.

  17. Biochemistry and biology of the inducible multifunctional transcription factor TFII-I: 10 years later.

    PubMed

    Roy, Ananda L

    2012-01-15

    Exactly twenty years ago TFII-I was discovered as a biochemical entity that was able to bind to and function via a core promoter element called the Initiator (Inr). Since then several different properties of this signal-induced multifunctional factor were discovered. Here I update these ever expanding functions of TFII-I--focusing primarily on the last ten years since the first review appeared in this journal.

  18. Biological effects of tolerable level chronic boron intake on transcription factors.

    PubMed

    Orenay Boyacioglu, Seda; Korkmaz, Mehmet; Kahraman, Erkan; Yildirim, Hatice; Bora, Selin; Ataman, Osman Yavuz

    2017-01-01

    The mechanism of boron effect on human transcription and translation has not been fully understood. In the current study it was aimed to reveal the role of boron on the expression of certain transcription factors that play key roles in many cellular pathways on human subjects chronically exposed to low amounts of boron. The boron concentrations in drinking water samples were 1.57±0.06mg/l for boron group while the corresponding value for the control group was 0.016±0.002mg/l. RNA isolation was performed using PAX gene RNA kit on the blood samples from the subjects. The RNA was then reverse transcribed into cDNA and analyzed using the Human Transcription Factors RT(2) Profiler™ PCR Arrays. While the boron amount in urine was detected as 3.56±1.47mg/day in the boron group, it was 0.72±0.30mg/day in the control group. Daily boron intake of the boron and control groups were calculated to be 6.98±3.39 and 1.18±0.41mg/day, respectively. The expression levels of the transcription factor genes were compared between the boron and control groups and no statistically significant difference was detected (P>0.05). The data suggest that boron intake at 6.98±3.39mg/day, which is the dose at which beneficial effects might be seen, does not result in toxicity at molecular level since the expression levels of transcription factors are not changed. Although boron intake over this level will seem to increase RNA synthesis, further examination of the topic is needed using new molecular epidemiological data.

  19. Biologic significance of constitutive and subliminal growth factor production by bone marrow stroma.

    PubMed

    Kittler, E L; McGrath, H; Temeles, D; Crittenden, R B; Kister, V K; Quesenberry, P J

    1992-06-15

    The "stromal" or adherent cells of long-term murine Dexter explant bone marrow cultures provide the best in vitro model of the bone marrow microenvironment. Colony-stimulating factor-1 (CSF-1) is produced constitutively by these cells and is easily detected, but most investigators have not found constitutive production of the other hemolymphopoietic cytokines. We have previously reported the detection of granulocyte-macrophage-CSF (GM-CSF) in murine stromal cultures and its induction by the lectin Pokeweed mitogen. The present studies analyzing stromal cytokine messenger RNA (mRNA) production by standard Northern blot analysis show constitutive production of mRNAs for CSF-1, GM-CSF, granulocyte-CSF (G-CSF), c-kit ligand (KL), and interleukin-6 (IL-6), but not IL-3, IL-4, or IL-5 by 3-week irradiated or nonirradiated murine Dexter stromal cells. Exposure of stromal cells to Pokeweed mitogen or IL-1 16 hours before RNA harvest induces the messages for GM-CSF, G-CSF, KL, and IL-6, but not IL-3, IL-4, IL-5, or CSF-1. Polymerase chain reaction amplification of cDNA made with reverse transcriptase from stromal RNA using two separate sets of IL-3-specific primers shows the presence of IL-3 message in irradiated stromal cells, which is only detectable with this more sensitive technique. The factor-dependent cell lines FDC-P1 and 32D are supported by the stromal cells without the addition of exogenous growth factors, demonstrating a cytokine activity in these cultures that is inhibited by the addition of anti-IL-3 or anti-GM-CSF antibodies. These data indicate that murine Dexter stromal cells constitutively produce CSF-1, GM-CSF, G-CSF, IL-6, KL, and IL-3. This growth factor production could explain the support of granulocyte, macrophage, and megakaryocyte production and stem cell maintenance in Dexter-type long-term murine bone marrow cultures.

  20. Identification of Extracellular Matrix Components and Biological Factors in Micronized Dehydrated Human Amnion/Chorion Membrane

    PubMed Central

    Lei, Jennifer; Priddy, Lauren B.; Lim, Jeremy J.; Massee, Michelle; Koob, Thomas J.

    2017-01-01

    Objective: The use of bioactive extracellular matrix (ECM) grafts such as amniotic membranes is an attractive treatment option for enhancing wound repair. In this study, the concentrations, activity, and distribution of matrix components, growth factors, proteases, and inhibitors were evaluated in PURION® Processed, micronized, dehydrated human amnion/chorion membrane (dHACM; MiMedx Group, Inc.). Approach: ECM components in dHACM tissue were assessed by using immunohistochemical staining, and growth factors, cytokines, proteases, and inhibitors were quantified by using single and multiplex ELISAs. The activities of proteases that were native to the tissue were determined via gelatin zymography and EnzChek® activity assay. Results: dHACM tissue contained the ECM components collagens I and IV, hyaluronic acid, heparin sulfate proteoglycans, fibronectin, and laminin. In addition, numerous growth factors, cytokines, chemokines, proteases, and protease inhibitors that are known to play a role in the wound-healing process were quantified in dHACM. Though matrix metalloproteinases (MMPs) were present in dHACM tissues, inhibitors of MMPs overwhelmingly outnumbered the MMP enzymes by an overall molar ratio of 28:1. Protease activity assays revealed that the MMPs in the tissue existed primarily either in their latent form or complexed with inhibitors. Innovation: This is the first study to characterize components that function in wound healing, including inhibitor and protease content and activity, in micronized dHACM. Conclusion: A variety of matrix components and growth factors, as well as proteases and their inhibitors, were identified in micronized dHACM, providing a better understanding of how micronized dHACM tissue can be used to effectively promote wound repair. PMID:28224047

  1. Prenatal stress is a vulnerability factor for altered morphology and biological activity of microglia cells

    PubMed Central

    Ślusarczyk, Joanna; Trojan, Ewa; Głombik, Katarzyna; Budziszewska, Bogusława; Kubera, Marta; Lasoń, Władysław; Popiołek-Barczyk, Katarzyna; Mika, Joanna; Wędzony, Krzysztof; Basta-Kaim, Agnieszka

    2015-01-01

    Several lines of evidence suggest that the dysregulation of the immune system is an important factor in the development of depression. Microglia are the resident macrophages of the central nervous system and a key player in innate immunity of the brain. We hypothesized that prenatal stress (an animal model of depression) as a priming factor could affect microglial cells and might lead to depressive-like disturbances in adult male rat offspring. We investigated the behavioral changes (sucrose preference test, Porsolt test), the expression of C1q and CD40 mRNA and the level of microglia (Iba1 positive) in 3-month-old control and prenatally stressed male offspring rats. In addition, we characterized the morphological and biochemical parameters of potentially harmful (NO, iNOS, IL-1β, IL-18, IL-6, TNF-α, CCL2, CXCL12, CCR2, CXCR4) and beneficial (insulin-like growth factor-1 (IGF-1), brain derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF)) phenotypes in cultures of microglia obtained from the cortices of 1–2 days old control and prenatally stressed pups. The adult prenatally stressed rats showed behavioral (anhedonic- and depression-like) disturbances, enhanced expression of microglial activation markers and an increased number of Iba1-immunopositive cells in the hippocampus and frontal cortex. The morphology of glia was altered in cultures from prenatally stressed rats, as demonstrated by immunofluorescence microscopy. Moreover, in these cultures, we observed enhanced expression of CD40 and MHC II and release of pro-inflammatory cytokines, including IL-1β, IL-18, TNF-α and IL-6. Prenatal stress significantly up-regulated levels of the chemokines CCL2, CXCL12 and altered expression of their receptors, CCR2 and CXCR4 while IGF-1 production was suppressed in cultures of microglia from prenatally stressed rats. Our results suggest that prenatal stress may lead to excessive microglia activation and contribute to the behavioral changes observed in depression in adulthood. PMID

  2. Pharmaco-therapeutic challenges in cancer biology with focus on the immune- system related risk factors.

    PubMed

    Dembic, Zlatko

    2014-01-01

    Over the past, progress has always been achieved in therapy of various human diseases with the introduction of novel methodologies from basic to clinical research. Recent advances in techniques, especially DNA sequencing and methylation analyses, faster miniaturized proteomics and live cellular stainings, are opening a new era in cancer research. Perhaps the difference this time can be envisaged as the beginning of the long-sought individualization of forthcoming cancer therapies. Cancer has complex genetic susceptibility that is wider than previously thought. Apart from genes encoding six functional capabilities of cancer - independent growth, avoidance of apoptosis, immortalization, multi-drug resistance, neovascularization, and invasiveness - predisposition includes four more factors that promote genome instability, inflammation, deregulation of metabolism as well as evasion of destruction by the immune system. The underlying genetic events, i.e. base-pair DNA mutations, are not the sole factors in cancer development. Additional novel controls of gene expression have been found in the epigenetic machinery, which has been increasingly important in assessing cancer risk in recent years. The predisposing factors, including their regulatory elements, are bona fide potential new targets in prospective cancer pharmacotherapy.

  3. Chemical and biological factors in the control of Brucella and brucellosis.

    PubMed

    Gamazo, Carlos; Lecároz, María Concepción; Prior, Sandra; Vitas, Ana Isabel; Campanero, Miguel Angel; Irache, Juan Manuel; Blanco-Prieto, María José

    2006-10-01

    Brucellosis is a highly contagious bacterial zoonosis that affects millions of people worldwide. Brucella is highly infectious, especially when aerosolized. The infection induces severe protracted diseases, which are both debilitating and incapacitating, hence, Brucella melitensis has been considered a potential biological warfare agent. In the battle against Brucella, it is crucial to know its chemical-structure and biochemistry-metabolic characteristics. It is well known that Brucella, as well as many other intracellular bacterial pathogens, has evolved to survive and even proliferate within monocytes and macrophages cells. Depending on the route of entry (complement, Fc, lectin or fibronectin receptors), the fate of the bacteria will vary; it may even segregate from the endocytic route towards the endoplasmic reticulum. This intracellular "non regular" behaviour of Brucella makes treatment difficult. Most antibiotics, although effective in vitro, do not actively pass through cellular membranes, or, once inside, may not reach the discrete intracellular niche where the bacteria is hidden. Therefore, complete eradication of the microorganisms is difficult to achieve, and the incidence of relapses is rather high. Taking these data into consideration, this review will evaluate the past, current and new trends in the control of brucellosis, paying special attention to the drug delivery systems as potential vectors for targeting these intracellular sites where the organisms are located.

  4. Expression analysis of angiogenic growth factors and biological axis CXCL12/CXCR4 axis in idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis.

    PubMed

    Antoniou, Katerina M; Soufla, Giannoula; Lymbouridou, Rena; Economidou, Foteini; Lasithiotaki, Ismini; Manousakis, Manolis; Drositis, Ioannis; Spandidos, Demetrios A; Siafakas, Nikolaos M

    2010-01-01

    Idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis (IPF) is associated with aberrant repair, persistence of collagen deposition, and the development of vascular remodeling. However, the role of angiogenesis in the pathogenesis of IPF is still undetermined. The aim of this study was to evaluate the combined mRNA expression of vascular endothelial growth factor A (VEGFA), fibroblast growth factor 2 (FGF2), insulin-like growth factor 1 (IGF1) epidermal growth factor (EGF), and its receptor (EGFR) in lung tissue obtained from IPF patients. We have also investigated the expression of chemokine CXCL12/stromal cell-derived factor-1 (SDF-1) and its receptor, CXCR4, to identify alterations that maybe implicated in the pathogenesis of IPF. The subjects studied consisted of two distinct groups: patients with IPF (n = 25) and subjects (control) undergoing thoracic surgery for reasons other than interstitial lung disease (n = 10). Expression analysis of the aforementioned growth factors and biological axis CXCL12/CXR4 analysis were performed using real-time RT-PCR. IGF-1, EGF, and FGF2 mRNA levels are significantly decreased in the patients compared to the controls (p = 0.028, p = 0.023 and p = 0.009, respectively). SDF1-TR1 and SDF1-TR2 transcript levels were significantly lower in patients compared to controls (p = 0.017 and p = 0.001). Significant coexpression of VEGF mRNA with IGF mRNA was observed in the group of the patients (p = 0.017). An additional coexpression of VEGF mRNA with SDF1-TR1 mRNA was demonstrated(p = 0.030). Our results show a downregulation in angiogenetic mechanisms in IPF. However, our results should be further verified by measuring other angiogenetic pathways in more samples.

  5. Systems Biology Model of Interactions between Tissue Growth Factors and DNA Damage Pathways: Low Dose Response and Cross-Talk in TGFβ and ATM Signaling

    SciTech Connect

    Cucinotta, Francis A

    2016-09-01

    The etiology of radiation carcinogenesis has been described in terms of aberrant changes that span several levels of biological organization. Growth factors regulate many important cellular and tissue functions including apoptosis, differentiation and proliferation. A variety of genetic and epigenetic changes of growth factors have been shown to contribute to cancer initiation and progression. It is known that cellular and tissue damage to ionizing radiation is in part initiated by the production of reactive oxygen species, which can activate cytokine signaling, and the DNA damage response pathways, most notably the ATM signaling pathway. Recently the transforming growth factor β (TGFβ) pathway has been shown to regulate or directly interact with the ATM pathway in the response to radiation. The relevance of this interaction with the ATM pathway is not known although p53 becomes phosphorylated and DNA damage responses are involved. However, growth factor interactions with DNA damage responses have not been elucidated particularly at low doses and further characterization of their relationship to cancer processes is warranted. Our goal will be to use a systems biology approach to mathematically and experimentally describe the low dose responses and cross-talk between the ATM and TGFβ pathways initiated by low and high LET radiation. We will characterize ATM and TGFβ signaling in epithelial and fibroblast cells using 2D models and ultimately extending to 3D organotypic cell culture models to begin to elucidate possible differences that may occur for different cell types and/or inter-cellular communication. We will investigate the roles of the Smad and Activating transcription factor 2 (ATF2) proteins as the potential major contributors to crosstalk between the TGFβ and ATM pathways, and links to cell cycle control and/or the DNA damage response, and potential differences in their responses at low and high doses. We have developed various experimental approaches

  6. Systems Biology Model of Interactions Between Tissue Growth Factors and DNA Damage Pathways: Low Dose Response and Cross-Talk in TGFbeta and ATM Signaling

    SciTech Connect

    O'Neill, Peter; Anderson, Jennifer

    2014-10-02

    The etiology of radiation carcinogenesis has been described in terms of aberrant changes that span several levels of biological organization. Growth factors regulate many important cellular and tissue functions including apoptosis, differentiation and proliferation. A variety of genetic and epigenetic changes of growth factors have been shown to contribute to cancer initiation and progression. It is known that cellular and tissue damage to ionizing radiation is in part initiated by the production of reactive oxygen species, which can activate cytokine signaling, and the DNA damage response pathways, most notably the ATM signaling pathway. Recently the transforming growth factor β (TGFβ) pathway has been shown to regulate or directly interact with the ATM pathway in the response to radiation. The relevance of this interaction with the ATM pathway is not known although p53 becomes phosphorylated and DNA damage responses are involved. However, growth factor interactions with DNA damage responses have not been elucidated particularly at low doses and further characterization of their relationship to cancer processes is warranted. Our goal will be to use a systems biology approach to mathematically and experimentally describe the low dose responses and cross-talk between the ATM and TGFβ pathways initiated by low and high LET radiation. We will characterize ATM and TGFβ signaling in epithelial and fibroblast cells using 2D models and ultimately extending to 3D organotypic cell culture models to begin to elucidate possible differences that may occur for different cell types and/or inter-cellular communication. We will investigate the roles of the Smad and Activating transcription factor 2 (ATF2) proteins as the potential major contributors to cross- talk between the TGFβ and ATM pathways, and links to cell cycle control and/or the DNA damage response, and potential differences in their responses at low and high doses. We have developed various experimental

  7. Comparative biology of sperm factors and fertilization-induced calcium signals across the animal kingdom.

    PubMed

    Kashir, Junaid; Deguchi, Ryusaku; Jones, Celine; Coward, Kevin; Stricker, Stephen A

    2013-10-01

    Fertilization causes mature oocytes or eggs to increase their concentrations of intracellular calcium ions (Ca²⁺) in all animals that have been examined, and such Ca²⁺ elevations, in turn, provide key activating signals that are required for non-parthenogenetic development. Several lines of evidence indicate that the Ca²⁺ transients produced during fertilization in mammals and other taxa are triggered by soluble factors that sperm deliver into oocytes after gamete fusion. Thus, for a broad-based analysis of Ca²⁺ dynamics during fertilization in animals, this article begins by summarizing data on soluble sperm factors in non-mammalian species, and subsequently reviews various topics related to a sperm-specific phospholipase C, called PLCζ, which is believed to be the predominant activator of mammalian oocytes. After characterizing initiation processes that involve sperm factors or alternative triggering mechanisms, the spatiotemporal patterns of Ca²⁺ signals in fertilized oocytes or eggs are compared in a taxon-by-taxon manner, and broadly classified as either a single major transient or a series of repetitive oscillations. Both solitary and oscillatory types of fertilization-induced Ca²⁺ signals are typically propagated as global waves that depend on Ca²⁺ release from the endoplasmic reticulum in response to increased concentrations of inositol 1,4,5-trisphosphate (IP₃). Thus, for taxa where relevant data are available, upstream pathways that elevate intraoocytic IP3 levels during fertilization are described, while other less-common modes of producing Ca²⁺ transients are also examined. In addition, the importance of fertilization-induced Ca²⁺ signals for activating development is underscored by noting some major downstream effects of these signals in various animals.

  8. Influence of Space-Flight Factors on the Properties of Microorganisms, Producers of Biologically Active Substances

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Krasheninnikova, T. K.; Kanaeva, E. N.; Ukraintsev, A. D.; Smolyanaya, G. L.; Kuznetsov, N. V.; Panasyuk, M. I.; Shcherbakov, G. Ya.

    2001-07-01

    The following substances were isolated under the influence of space-flight factors in cosmic experiments aboard the Mirorbital station: an MIB-90 monoisolant, which is distinguished by its morphological and biochemical properties and enhanced productivity, was isolated from the Bacillus thuringiensis ssp. Kurstaki var. Z-52culture, which is a producer of the plant protection agent Lepidocide; and MIA-74 and MIP-89 monoisolants, which are highly active toward heavy petroleum fractions (C23 C33), were isolated from the Arthrobacter OC-1culture, which is a producer of biodegradants for petroleum.

  9. From animal to molecule: aspects of the biology of insulin-like growth factors.

    PubMed Central

    Gilmour, R. S.; Prosser, C. G.; Fleet, I. R.; Cocco, L.; Saunders, J. C.; Brown, K. D.; Corps, A. N.

    1988-01-01

    The synthesis of IGF-II mRNA in sheep foetal tissues is considerably higher than IGF-I. IGF-II probably has a paracrine role in the foetus; however it is likely that IGF-I originates mainly from the foetal liver and has an endocrine function. Although in the adult system IGF-I is tightly bound to serum carrier proteins it is potentially biologically active. Galactopoiesis in the goat mammary gland provides a useful model for demonstrating the importance of circulating IGF-I as a mediator of GH action. Ligand-receptor interactions involved in the stimulation of Swiss 3T3 fibroblasts by IGF-I, II and insulin were examined. It was found that the potency of binding to type I receptors was IGF-I greater than IGF-II much greater than insulin by competitive binding assays and chemical cross-linking studies, and that some cell lines secrete an IGF binding protein which is specific for IGF-I and II and which acts as an inhibitor in cellular binding assays. Maximal stimulation of DNA synthesis induced by IGF-I, II and insulin in the presence of synergising mitogens were similar. While the actions of the IGFs were consistent with type I receptor binding insulin appeared to act through its own receptor. The reduction of EGF receptor affinity following the addition of IGF-I and insulin to 3T3 cells may involve a protein kinase that is not sensitive to phorbol esters. 3T3 cell nuclei contain endogenous inositol phospholipids and their corresponding kinases and monoesterases.(ABSTRACT TRUNCATED AT 250 WORDS) Images Figure 4 Figure 6 PMID:2855464

  10. Challenge of investigating biologically relevant functions of virulence factors in bacterial pathogens.

    PubMed Central

    Moxon, R; Tang, C

    2000-01-01

    Recent innovations have increased enormously the opportunities for investigating the molecular basis of bacterial pathogenicity, including the availability of whole-genome sequences, techniques for identifying key virulence genes, and the use of microarrays and proteomics. These methods should provide powerful tools for analysing the patterns of gene expression and function required for investigating host-microbe interactions in vivo. But, the challenge is exacting. Pathogenicity is a complex phenotype and the reductionist approach does not adequately address the eclectic and variable outcomes of host-microbe interactions, including evolutionary dynamics and ecological factors. There are difficulties in distinguishing bacterial 'virulence' factors from the many determinants that are permissive for pathogenicity, for example those promoting general fitness. A further practical problem for some of the major bacterial pathogens is that there are no satisfactory animal models or experimental assays that adequately reflect the infection under investigation. In this review, we give a personal perspective on the challenge of characterizing how bacterial pathogens behave in vivo and discuss some of the methods that might be most relevant for understanding the molecular basis of the diseases for which they are responsible. Despite the powerful genomic, molecular, cellular and structural technologies available to us, we are still struggling to come to grips with the question of 'What is a pathogen?' PMID:10874737

  11. Platelet-derived growth factor is a potent biologic response modifier of T cells

    PubMed Central

    1991-01-01

    Freshly isolated lymph node (LN) cells cultured in serum-containing medium were restricted to produce primarily interleukin 2 (IL-2) subsequent to T cell activation. Only minimal amounts of IL-4, IL-5, or interferon gamma (IFN-gamma) were produced under these conditions. Similar populations of LN cells cultured in serum-free medium were able to produce a variety of lymphokines after T cell activation, with the relative quantities of each species being dependent upon the lymphoid organ source of the lymphocytes. A similar relationship in the patterns of lymphokines produced by activated T cell hybridomas maintained under serum-free conditions was also observed, whereas activation in serum- supplemented media resulted in a predominant restriction to the secretion of IL-2. Additional studies determined that the entity in serum responsible for restricting T cell function in vitro was platelet- derived growth factor (PDGF). The PDGF-BB isoform was established to be the most active in the regulation of T cell function, enhancing IL-2 while depressing the production of IL-4, IL-5, and IFN-gamma at concentrations below 1 ng/ml. PDGF-AB was also found to be quite active, however, this isoform of PDGF was incapable of influencing IFN- gamma production at the concentrations tested. PDGF-AA was very weakly active. It therefore appears that PDGF, acting primarily through a beta receptor subunit (either alpha/beta- or beta/beta-type receptors) is able to influence profoundly the behavior of T cells, with some of its modulatory effects exhibiting isoform specificity. This is reflected by an enhancement in the production of IL-2, while simultaneously depressing the secretion of IL-4, IL-5, and IFN-gamma (PDGF-BB only) after T cell activation. Kinetic studies, where cell supernatants were analyzed both 24 and 48 h after T cell activation, suggested that "desensitization" to PDGF influences can occur naturally in vitro. Those species of lymphokines that were inhibited by PDGF over

  12. The African honey bee: factors contributing to a successful biological invasion.

    PubMed

    Scott Schneider, Stanley; DeGrandi-Hoffman, Gloria; Smith, Deborah Roan

    2004-01-01

    The African honey bee subspecies Apis mellifera scutellata has colonized much of the Americas in less than 50 years and has largely replaced European bees throughout its range in the New World. The African bee therefore provides an excellent opportunity to examine the factors that influence invasion success. We provide a synthesis of recent research on the African bee, concentrating on its ability to displace European honey bees. Specifically, we consider (a) the genetic composition of the expanding population and the symmetry of gene flow between African and European bees, (b) the mechanisms that favor the preservation of the African genome, and (c) the possible range and impact of the African bee in the United States.

  13. The chemical and biological factors associated with ecosystem recovery from copper stress as exemplified by microcosms

    SciTech Connect

    Meador, J.P.

    1988-01-01

    The process of recovery from severe toxicant stress was examined in microcosms exposed to copper. The variables, algal and animal abundance, nutrient uptake, oxygen change, pH alkalinity, and the concentrations of total, dissolved, and ionic copper and dissolved organic carbon (DOC) were measured. Several process studies confirmed microcosm observations that algal metabolism was responsible for variation in pH and DOC concentration. It was demonstrated that these two parameters had a large influence on copper speciation and were responsible for ecosystem recovery. A complete three-factor, 48 hour bioassay was performed to assess the effects and interactions of DOC, pH and total copper on copper toxicity to Daphnia magma. A model using these 3 variables was developed which explained 84% of the variation in the determination of ionic copper. Mortality of Daphnia magma was modeled by using ionic copper as the dependent variable which explained 86% to 79% of the variation (at 24 and 48 hours). Variations in total copper concentration produced temporal variations in ecosystem recovery and the species dominance. Dissolved copper concentrations were correlated with pH values and consistently decreased to around 200 ppb (3:1 {mu}M) before algal recovery commenced. Dissolved copper concentrations were inadequate in explaining Daphnia magma toxicity when based on LC50 values. In this system, algal biomass, as an adsorbant, was shown to be insignificant in controlling copper toxicity. Alkalinity, which can be a major factor in copper speciation and toxicity, was also unimportant. It was determined that Daphnia magma populations were not inhibited when fed the copper-tolerant algal species, Oocystis pusilla, grown in a solution with a high copper concentration. Also, exposure to a high dissolved copper concentration did not confer resistance to copper toxicity in Daphnia magma.

  14. Effects of an Educational Experience Incorporating an Inventory of Factors Potentially Influencing Student Acceptance of Biological Evolution

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wiles, Jason R.; Alters, Brian

    2011-12-01

    This investigation provides an extensive review of scientific, religious, and otherwise non-scientific factors that may influence student acceptance of biological evolution. We also measure the extent to which students' levels of acceptance changed following an educational experience designed to address an inclusive inventory of factors identified as potentially affecting student acceptance of evolution (n = 81, pre-test/post-test) n = 37, one-year longitudinal). Acceptance of evolution was measured using the Measure of Acceptance of the Theory of Evolution (MATE) instrument among participants enrolled in a secondary-level academic programme during the summer prior to their final year of high school and as they transitioned to the post-secondary level. Student acceptance of evolution was measured to be significantly higher than initial levels both immediately following and over one year after the educational experience. Results reported herein carry implications for future quantitative and qualitative research as well as for cross-disciplinary instruction plans related to evolutionary science and non-scientific factors which may influence student understanding of evolution.

  15. Receptor binding and cellular uptake studies of macrophage migration inhibitory factor (MIF): use of biologically active labeled MIF derivatives.

    PubMed

    Kleemann, Robert; Grell, Matthias; Mischke, Ralf; Zimmermann, Gudrun; Bernhagen, Jürgen

    2002-03-01

    Macrophage migration inhibitory factor (MIF) is a pleiotropic cytokine for which a receptor has not been identified. That MIF has intracellular functions has been suggested by its enzymatic activity and constitutive expression profile. The discovery of functional MIF-c-Jun activation domain binding protein 1 (JAB1) binding has confirmed this notion and indicated that nonreceptor-based signaling mechanisms are important for MIF function. Here, we have generated and tested several biologically active labeled MIF derivatives to further define target protein binding by MIF and its cellular uptake characteristics. (35)S-MIF, biotinylated MIF, and fluoresceinated MIF were demonstrated to exhibit full biologic activity. Neither by applying a standard iodinated MIF preparation nor by using the biologically active (35)S-MIF derivative in receptor-binding studies were we able to measure any receptor-binding activity on numerous cells, confirming that uptake of MIF into target cells and MIF signaling can occur by receptor-independent pathways. When MIF derivatives were applied in cellular uptake studies, MIF was found to be endocytosed into both immune and nonimmune cells and targeted to the cytosol and lysosomes. The entry of MIF was temperature and energy dependent and was inhibited by monodansylcadaverine but not by ouabain. Endocytosed biotin-MIF bound JAB1 not only in macrophages, as shown previously, but also in nonimmune cells. A tagged MIF construct, MIF-enhanced green fluorescent protein (EGFP), was shown to be a valuable tool, as EGFP constructs of critical MIF cysteine mutants exhibited identical cellular localization properties to those of wild-type MIF (wtMIF). Our results indicate that MIF membrane receptors are not widely expressed, if at all, and suggest that the cellular uptake of MIF occurs by nonreceptor-mediated endocytosis rather than penetration. All the derivatives investigated, except for iodinated MIF, represent valuable tools for further MIF target

  16. Evidence of market-driven size-selective fishing and the mediating effects of biological and institutional factors

    PubMed Central

    Reddy, Sheila M. W.; Wentz, Allison; Aburto-Oropeza, Octavio; Maxey, Martin; Nagavarapu, Sriniketh; Leslie, Heather M.

    2014-01-01

    Market demand is often ignored or assumed to lead uniformly to the decline of resources. Yet little is known about how market demand influences natural resources in particular contexts, or the mediating effects of biological or institutional factors. Here, we investigate this problem by examining the Pacific red snapper (Lutjanus peru) fishery around La Paz, Mexico, where medium or “plate-sized” fish are sold to restaurants at a premium price. If higher demand for plate-sized fish increases the relative abundance of the smallest (recruit size class) and largest (most fecund) fish, this may be a market mechanism to increase stocks and fishermen’s revenues. We tested this hypothesis by estimating the effect of prices on the distribution of catch across size classes using daily records of prices and catch. We linked predictions from this economic choice model to a staged-based model of the fishery to estimate the effects on the stock and revenues from harvest. We found that the supply of plate-sized fish increased by 6%, while the supply of large fish decreased by 4% as a result of a 13% price premium for plate-sized fish. This market-driven size selection increased revenues (14%) but decreased total fish biomass (−3%). However, when market-driven size selection was combined with limited institutional constraints, both fish biomass (28%) and fishermen’s revenue (22%) increased. These results show that the direction and magnitude of the effects of market demand on biological populations and human behavior can depend on both biological attributes and institutional constraints. Fisheries management may capitalize on these conditional effects by implementing size-based regulations when economic and institutional incentives will enhance compliance, as in the case we describe here, or by creating compliance enhancing conditions for existing regulations. PMID:23865225

  17. Determination of the scattering coefficient of biological tissue considering the wavelength and absorption dependence of the anisotropy factor

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Fukutomi, Daichi; Ishii, Katsunori; Awazu, Kunio

    2016-04-01

    The anisotropy factor g, one of the optical properties of biological tissues, has a strong influence on the calculation of the scattering coefficient μ s in inverse Monte Carlo (iMC) simulations. It has been reported that g has the wavelength and absorption dependence; however, few attempts have been made to calculate μ s using g values by taking the wavelength and absorption dependence into account. In this study, the angular distributions of scattered light for biological tissue phantoms containing hemoglobin as a light absorber were measured by a goniometric optical setup at strongly (405 nm) and weakly (664 nm) absorbing wavelengths to obtain g. Subsequently, the optical properties were calculated with the measured values of g by integrating sphere measurements and an iMC simulation, and compared with the results obtained with a conventional g value of 0.9. The μ s values with measured g were overestimated at the strongly absorbing wavelength, but underestimated at the weakly absorbing wavelength if 0.9 was used in the iMC simulation.

  18. The activation of fibroblast growth factors by heparin: synthesis, structure, and biological activity of heparin-like oligosaccharides.

    PubMed

    de Paz, J L; Angulo, J; Lassaletta, J M; Nieto, P M; Redondo-Horcajo, M; Lozano, R M; Giménez-Gallego, G; Martín-Lomas, M

    2001-09-03

    An effective strategy has been designed for the synthesis of oligosaccharides of different sizes structurally related to the regular region of heparin; this is illustrated by the preparation of hexasaccharide 1 and octasaccharide 2. This synthetic strategy provides the oligosaccharide sequence containing a D-glucosamine unit at the nonreducing end that is not available either by enzymatic or chemical degradation of heparin. It may permit, after slight modifications, the preparation of oligosaccharide fragments with different charge distribution as well. NMR spectroscopy and molecular dynamics simulations have shown that the overall structure of 1 in solution is a stable right-hand helix with four residues per turn. Hexasaccharide 1 and, most likely, octasaccharide 2 are, therefore, chemically well-defined structural models of naturally occurring heparin-like oligosaccharides for use in binding and biological activity studies. Both compounds 1 and 2 induce the mitogenic activity of acid fibroblast growth factor (FGF1), with the half-maximum activating concentration of 2 being equivalent to that of heparin. Sedimentation equilibrium analysis with compound 2 suggests that heparin-induced FGF1 dimerization is not an absolute requirement for biological activity.

  19. The biological factors influence on the conversion of mineral components of Extremely Arid Desert Soils (Kazakhstan)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kutovaya, Olga; Vasilenko, Elena; Lebedeva, Marina; Tkhakakhova, Azida

    2013-04-01

    Extremely arid soils of stony deserts (hamadas) along the southern periphery of the Ili Depression are considered to be analogous to extremely arid soils of Mongolia, also named as "ultra-arid primitive gray-brown soils." In general, the morphology of extremely arid soils of hamadas in the Ili Depression is similar to that of the soils of stony deserts in other parts of the world, including the Gobi, Atacama, and Tarim deserts. The diagnostics of the active communities of microorganisms were performed according to the method of Rybalkina-Kononenko. The exact identification of the living forms of microorganisms to the species level is not always possible with the use of this method. However, it allows us to study the physiological role of the microorganisms and their ecological functions, including the relationships with the soil matrix and other organisms. In particular, it is possible to estimate the contribution of the microorganisms to the transformation of mineral soil components. The obtained materials allow us to conclude that the extremely arid desert soils are characterized by the very high biological activity during short periods of the increased soil moistening after rare and strong rains. The diversity of living forms is very considerable; both prokaryotes (cyanobacteria, actinomycetes, and iron bacteria) and protists (green algae, diatoms, and dinoflagellates) are developed in the soil. Thus, during a short period after the rains, these microorganisms pass from the stage of anabiosis to the stage of active growth and reproduction. Then, upon drying of the soil, the biotic activity of the soil slows down and, finally, terminates. The organisms remain in the state of anabiosis until the next rain. During the period of active growth, the microorganisms compose a specific consortium of different species and exert a profound impact on the soil properties. They participate in the transformation of the soil minerals with the formation of amorphous substances

  20. Factors influencing the movement biology of migrant songbirds confronted with an ecological barrier

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Smolinsky, J. A.; Diehl, Robert H.; Radzio, T. A.; Delaney, D. K.; Moore, F. R

    2013-01-01

    Whether or not a migratory songbird embarks on a long-distance flight across an ecological barrier is likely a response to a number of endogenous and exogenous factors. During autumn 2008 and 2009, we used automated radio tracking to investigate how energetic condition, age, and weather influenced the departure timing and direction of Swainson’s thrushes (Catharus ustulatus) during migratory stopover along the northern coast of the Gulf of Mexico. Most birds left within 1 h after sunset on the evening following capture. Those birds that departed later on the first night or remained longer than 1 day were lean. Birds that carried fat loads sufficient to cross the Gulf of Mexico generally departed in a seasonally appropriate southerly direction, whereas lean birds nearly always flew inland in a northerly direction. We did not detect an effect of age or weather on departures. The decision by lean birds to reorient movement inland may reflect the suitability of the coastal stopover site for deposition of fuel stores and the motivation to seek food among more extensive forested habitat away from the barrier.

  1. Primary structure of rat insulin-like growth factor-I and its biological activities.

    PubMed

    Tamura, K; Kobayashi, M; Ishii, Y; Tamura, T; Hashimoto, K; Nakamura, S; Niwa, M; Zapf, J

    1989-04-05

    Rat insulin-like growth factor-I (IGF-I), a serum polypeptide with growth promoting activity, was isolated from rat serum by a combination of acid/ethanol extraction, affinity chromatography, and a series of reversed phase high performance liquid chromatography, cation exchange, and reversed phase. All peptide fragments produced by chymotrypsin digestion of reduced and carboxymethylated rat IGF-I were amino acid sequenced and compared with the sequence of human IGF-I. Three out of 70 of the rat amino acid residues differed from those of human IGF-I as follows: Asp20----Pro, Ser35----Ile and Ala67----Thr. Purified rat IGF-I cross-reacted with polyclonal anti-human IGF-I antibody 75% as compared to human IGF-I, but it cross-reacted only 3% with monoclonal anti-human IGF-I antibody. Thus, it is possible to monitor the metabolic fate of human IGF-I, when injected into rats, without interference by endogenous rat IGF-I. Rat IGF-I showed 65% activity in the radioreceptor, 28.6% activity in the lipogenesis and 22.5% activity in the free fatty acid release inhibition assays as compared to human IGF-I on a protein quantity basis.

  2. Environmental and biological factors influencing the UV-C resistance of Listeria monocytogenes.

    PubMed

    Gayán, E; Serrano, M J; Pagán, R; Álvarez, I; Condón, S

    2015-04-01

    In this investigation, the effect of microbiological factors (strain, growth phase, exposition to sublethal stresses, and photorepair ability), treatment medium characteristics (pH, water activity, and absorption coefficient), and processing parameters (dose and temperature) on the UV resistance of Listeria monocytogenes was studied. The dose to inactivate 99.99% of the initial population of the five strains tested ranged from 21.84 J/mL (STCC 5672) to 14.66 J/mL (STCC 4031). The UV inactivation of the most resistant strain did not change in different growth phases and after exposure to sublethal heat, acid, basic, and oxidative shocks. The pH and water activity of the treatment medium did not affect the UV resistance of L. monocytogenes, whereas the inactivation rate decreased exponentially with the absorption coefficient. The lethal effect of UV radiation increased synergistically with temperature between 50 and 60 °C (UV-H treatment). A UV-H treatment of 27.10 J/mL at 55 °C reached 2.99 and 3.69 Log10 inactivation cycles of L. monocytogenes in orange juice and vegetable broth, and more than 5 Log10 cycles in apple juice and chicken broth. This synergistic effect opens the possibility to design UV combined processes for the pasteurization of liquid foods with high absorptivity.

  3. Biological effects of targeted inactivation of hepatocyte growth factor-like protein in mice.

    PubMed Central

    Bezerra, J A; Carrick, T L; Degen, J L; Witte, D; Degen, S J

    1998-01-01

    Hepatocyte growth factor-like protein (HGFL) is a liver-derived serum glycoprotein involved in cell proliferation and differentiation, and is proposed to have a fundamental role in embryogenesis, fertility, hematopoiesis, macrophage activation, and tissue repair. To assess the in vivo effects of total loss of HGFL, we generated mice with targeted disruption of the gene resulting in loss of the protein. Disruption of the HGFL gene allowed for normal embryogenesis, and followed a Mendelian pattern of genetic transmission. Mice homozygous for the targeted allele (HGFL-/- mice) are fertile, and grow to adulthood without obvious phenotypic abnormalities in unchallenged animals, except for development of lipid-containing cytoplasmic vacuoles in hepatocytes throughout the liver lobules. These histologic changes are not accompanied by discernible changes in synthetic or excretory hepatic functions. Hematopoiesis appears unaltered, and although macrophage activation is delayed in the absence of HGFL, migration to the peritoneal cavity upon challenge with thioglycollate was similar in HGFL-/- and wild-type mice. Challenged with incision to skin, HGFL-/- mice display normal wound healing. These data demonstrate that HGFL is not essential for embryogenesis, fertility, or wound healing. HGFL-deficient mice will provide a valuable means to assess the role of HGFL in hepatic and systemic responses to inflammatory and infectious stimuli in vivo. PMID:9486989

  4. Sources and biology of regulatory factors active on mouse myeloid leukemic cells

    SciTech Connect

    Metcalf, D.

    1982-01-01

    The action of serum or cells in enforcing differentiation in mouse myelomonocytic leukemic cells was monitored in agar cultures of WEHI-3B leukemic cells. The repeated intravenous injection of 5 ..mu..g endotoxin initially increased serum differentiating activity but after the third injection responses to further injections decreased markedly. Congenitally athymic (nude) mice exhibited normal rises in serum differentiating activity when injected with endotoxin but C3H HeJ mice failed to respond to challenge with purified lipid A. Whole body irradiation up to 1,200 rads did not increase serum differentiating activity but did not suppress responses to challenge injection of endotoxin. Coculture of WEHI-3B cells with peritoneal cells from normal or irradiated BALB/c mice caused marked granulocytic differentiation in WEHI-3B colonies. This effect was not seen if leukemic cells were cultured with thymus, spleen, or bone marrow cells. The serum halflife of the factor in postendotoxin serum enforcing differentiation of WEHI-3B cells was shown to be 1.5-2.3 hr.

  5. Sediment studies of the biological factors controlling the reduction of U(VI).

    SciTech Connect

    Lovley, derek, R.

    2004-08-04

    Studies were conducted primarily with sediments, both in laboratory incubations and in a field experiment, with supporting studies with pure cultures. To our knowledge the sediment studies were the first on microbial U(VI) reduction in actual uranium-contaminated subsurface sediments, under conditions that mimic those found in situ. Important findings included: (1) U(VI) reduction is a biotic process in subsurface sediments. (2) U(VI) reduction can be stimulated most effectively with the addition of acetate. Although it had been speculated that microbial U(VI) reduction might be capable of this type of environmental remediation ever since the discovery of microbial U(VI) reduction, this had not been previously demonstrated under environmentally relevant conditions. (3) U(VI) is reduced concurrently with Fe(III) and prior to sulfate reduction. U(VI) and Fe(III) reduction proceeded concurrently, accompanied by a dramatic enrichment in organisms in the Geobacteraceae. Sulfate-reducing microorganisms do not appear to be important components of the microbial community reducing U(VI) in these subsurface sediments. (4) Nitrate has important influences on U(VI) reduction. Nitrate inhibits the reduction of metals until nitrate is depleted. Fe(III)-reducing microorganisms such as Geobacter metallireducens and Desulfitobacterium species can oxidize Fe(II) with the reduction of nitrate which is an important consideration because our previous studies have demonstrated that freshly precipitated Fe(III) oxides can reoxidize U(IV) to U(VI). The discovery that G. metallireducens can ''run backwards'' and oxidize U(IV) when nitrate is present reveals another mechanism preventing precipitation of U(IV) in the presence of nitrate as well as potential novel strategy for removing uranium from the subsurface after a site has been remediated. (5) Importance of understanding Fe(III) forms available for microbial reduction. Fe(III) is orders of magnitude more abundant than U(VI) as an

  6. Biologic Roles of Estrogen Receptor-β and Insulin-Like Growth Factor-2 in Triple-Negative Breast Cancer

    PubMed Central

    Elshimali, Yahya; Garbán, Hermes; Elashoff, David; Vadgama, Jaydutt; Goodglick, Lee

    2015-01-01

    Triple-negative breast cancer (TNBC) occurs in 10–15% of patients yet accounts for almost half of all breast cancer deaths. TNBCs lack expression of estrogen and progesterone receptors and HER-2 overexpression and cannot be treated with current targeted therapies. TNBCs often occur in African American and younger women. Although initially responsive to some chemotherapies, TNBCs tend to relapse and metastasize. Thus, it is critical to find new therapeutic targets. A second ER gene product, termed ERβ, in the absence of ERα may be such a target. Using human TNBC specimens with known clinical outcomes to assess ERβ expression, we find that ERβ1 associates with significantly worse 5-year overall survival. Further, a panel of TNBC cell lines exhibit significant levels of ERβ protein. To assess ERβ effects on proliferation, ERβ expression in TNBC cells was silenced using shRNA, resulting in a significant reduction in TNBC proliferation. ERβ-specific antagonists similarly suppressed TNBC growth. Growth-stimulating effects of ERβ may be due in part to downstream actions that promote VEGF, amphiregulin, and Wnt-10b secretion, other factors associated with tumor promotion. In vivo, insulin-like growth factor-2 (IGF-2), along with ERβ1, is significantly expressed in TNBC and stimulates high ERβ mRNA in TNBC cells. This work may help elucidate the interplay of metabolic and growth factors in TNBC. PMID:25874233

  7. Cytogenetic findings in lung cancer that illuminate its biological history from adenomatous hyperplasia to bronchioalveolar carcinoma to adenocarcinoma: A case report.

    PubMed

    Bettio, Daniela; Cariboni, Umberto; Venci, Anna; Valente, Marialuisa; Spaggiari, Paola; Alloisio, Marco

    2012-12-01

    The biological and chronological evolution of lung cancer remain to be fully elucidated. A multi-step carcinogenesis hypothesis suggests a progression from atypical adenomatous hyperplasia (AAH) through bronchioalveolar carcinoma (BAC) to invasive adenocarcinoma (AC), but to date this has not been formally demonstrated. We report a case of a patient diagnosed by computed tomography (CT) with lung cancer in the superior right lobe who also presented with a pure ground-glass opacity (GGO) in the inferior lobe, while the middle lobe appeared normal. Following pneumonectomy, cytogenetic analysis successfully performed on spontaneous metaphases obtained by the direct method from samples of the three lung lobes showed the presence of three clonal cell populations, each progressively having increased karyotype complexity. Fluorescence in situ hybridization (FISH), performed using ALK (2p23) break probe and ALK/EML4 t(2;2);inv(2) fusion probe, showed a normal pattern for all specimens. Histological evaluation confirmed the presence of AC in the superior right lobe and classified the GGO lesion as BAC and the normal tissue of the middle lobe as AAH. To the best of our knowledge, this is the first case in which the cytogenetic study of spontaneous metaphases showed a clear clonal relationship among AC, BAC and AAH present simultaneously in different lobes of the same lung. This case appears to indicate that the entire lung was somehow predisposed to a neoplastic transformation starting with a diffuse AAH characterized by high proliferative activity. Moreover, the 5q13 region involved in the translocation shared by BAC and AC contains at least 4 genes encoding important regulators of the cell cycle that may be considered new molecular markers of lung cancer.

  8. The molecular and biological analysis of ixodid ticks histamine release factors.

    PubMed

    Mulenga, Albert; Azad, Abdu F

    2005-01-01

    We previously described a Dermacentor varibialis (DV) cDNA that encodes a ubiquitously expressed and tick saliva-secreted functional histamine release factor (HRF) homolog. In this study gene specific primers based on DVHRF open reading frame nucleotide sequence were utilized to amplify three orthologs, from the wood tick, D. andersoni (DA), the black legged tick, the southern cattle tick, Boophilus microplus (BM) and the lone star tick, Amblyomma americanum (AA). At nucleotide level, sequence comparisons revealed 98 89 and 84% similarity to DVHRF for DAHRF, AAHRF and BMHRF, respectively, while predicted polypeptide comparisons revealed 98, 96 and 91% similarity for DAHRF, AAHRF and BMHRF respectively. Phylogenetically, the tick HRF clade, while distinct (100% bootstrap value), is closely related to other arthropods, but distantly related to vertebrate and protozoan clades. Consistent with sequence similarity analysis, a DVHRF-specific northern blotting probe hybridized a approximately 900 base pair (bp) mRNA band on all RNA blots. Likewise a mouse polyclonal antibody to E. coli-expressed recombinant (r) DVHRF, cross-reacted baculovirus-expressed non-fusion rAAHRF, rDAHRF, and rBMHRF. As revealed by northern blotting analysis of larvae and nymph RNA, DVHRF mRNA is expressed in both immature and mature ticks indicating that its transcription is not developmentally regulated. Unlike rHRF/TCTP proteins of other organisms, the calcium-binding function may not be conserved for tick HRF homologs as revealed by the 45CaCl2+ overlay assay. Apparent global expression of DVHRF and its orthologs make this protein family an ideal target antigen for development of novel tick control strategies targeting multiple tick species.

  9. The epidermal growth factor receptor/Erb-B/HER family in normal and malignant breast biology.

    PubMed

    Eccles, Suzanne A

    2011-01-01

    The EGFR/Erb-B receptor tyrosine kinases each play distinct and complementary roles in normal breast development. The four receptors form both homodimers and heterodimers in response to binding by ligands which show selectivity for one or more of the receptors (except Erb-B2). Together with the additional flexibility generated by the formation of different dimer pairs, these signalling networks play key roles in directing a variety of both autocrine and paracrine cellular responses. Complex two-way interactions between mammary epithelial cells and the surrounding stroma direct proliferation, duct formation, branching and terminal differentiation during puberty, pregnancy and lactation, with each receptor and ligand fulfilling distinct roles. Caricatures of the normal role of EGFR/Erb-B signalling resulting in aberrant cellular responses are seen in breast cancers, where over-expression and/or (less commonly) mutation of one or more of the receptors results in enhanced cell proliferation, motility, release of proteases and angiogenic factors. Given their importance in tumour progression, compared with most normal adult tissues and their links with resistance to chemotherapy and anti-endocrine therapy, Erb-B receptors (most notably Erb-B2) have been exploited as therapeutic targets. Monoclonal antibodies (e.g. trastuzumab, pertuzumab) and small molecule tyrosine kinase inhibitors (e.g. lapatinib, afatinib) have shown significant clinical responses in some breast cancer subtypes. Additional approaches include targeted toxins or drugs, peptide vaccines, immunRNase and chaperone inhibitors to deplete Erb-B2 protein levels. Greater understanding of the full spectrum of Erb-B-mediated signalling pathways and their misregulation in breast cancer will provide additional strategies to control malignant progression.

  10. The water factor and mortality from ischemic heart disease: a review and possible explanations for inconsistent findings with additional data from Manitoba.

    PubMed

    Abu-Zeid, H A

    1979-01-01

    The question of the relationship between water hardness and mortality from cardiovascular diseases is far from being settled. Marked discrepancies in the results of various studies in this area exist and there is a great need for closer examination of the reliability of measuring water hardness and other water characteristics. There is also a need for standardizing these measurements and for accounting for certain important questions in designing studies of this nature. This article reviews the results of various studies on the "water factor," points out their discrepancies, presents additional evidence from the Province of Manitoba against the "water factor;" and explains possible sources for discrepancies in the findings of various studies. Based on the evidence so far available, it is too early to universally accept the "water story" and to make recommendations for discouraging the softening of hard water as a measure for preventing cardiovascular disease mortality.

  11. First Evaluation of the Biologic Effectiveness Factors of Boron Neutron Capture Therapy (BNCT) in a Human Colon Carcinoma Cell Line

    SciTech Connect

    Dagrosa, Maria Alejandra; Crivello, Martin; Perona, Marina; Thorp, Silvia; Santa Cruz, Gustavo Alberto; Pozzi, Emiliano; Casal, Mariana; Thomasz, Lisa; Cabrini, Romulo; Kahl, Steven; Juvenal, Guillermo Juan; Pisarev, Mario Alberto

    2011-01-01

    Purpose: DNA lesions produced by boron neutron capture therapy (BNCT) and those produced by gamma radiation in a colon carcinoma cell line were analyzed. We have also derived the relative biologic effectiveness factor (RBE) of the neutron beam of the RA-3- Argentine nuclear reactor, and the compound biologic effectiveness (CBE) values for p-boronophenylalanine ({sup 10}BPA) and for 2,4-bis ({alpha},{beta}-dihydroxyethyl)-deutero-porphyrin IX ({sup 10}BOPP). Methods and Materials: Exponentially growing human colon carcinoma cells (ARO81-1) were distributed into the following groups: (1) BPA (10 ppm {sup 10}B) + neutrons, (2) BOPP (10 ppm {sup 10}B) + neutrons, (3) neutrons alone, and (4) gamma rays ({sup 60}Co source at 1 Gy/min dose-rate). Different irradiation times were used to obtain total absorbed doses between 0.3 and 5 Gy ({+-}10%) (thermal neutrons flux = 7.5 10{sup 9} n/cm{sup 2} sec). Results: The frequency of micronucleated binucleated cells and the number of micronuclei per micronucleated binucleated cells showed a dose-dependent increase until approximately 2 Gy. The response to gamma rays was significantly lower than the response to the other treatments (p < 0.05). The irradiations with neutrons alone and neutrons + BOPP showed curves that did not differ significantly from, and showed less DNA damage than, irradiation with neutrons + BPA. A decrease in the surviving fraction measured by 3-(4,5-dimetiltiazol-2-il)-2,5-difeniltetrazolium bromide (MTT) assay as a function of the absorbed dose was observed for all the treatments. The RBE and CBE factors calculated from cytokinesis block micronucleus (CBMN) and MTT assays were, respectively, the following: beam RBE: 4.4 {+-} 1.1 and 2.4 {+-} 0.6; CBE for BOPP: 8.0 {+-} 2.2 and 2.0 {+-} 1; CBE for BPA: 19.6 {+-} 3.7 and 3.5 {+-} 1.3. Conclusions: BNCT and gamma irradiations showed different genotoxic patterns. To our knowledge, these values represent the first experimental ones obtained for the RA-3 in a

  12. Key Factors Controlling the Growth of Biological Soil Crusts: Towards a Protocol to Produce Biocrusts in Greenhouse Facilities

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Velasco Ayuso, Sergio; María Giraldo Silva, Ana; Nelson, Corey; Barger, Nichole; Antoninka, Anita; Bowker, Matthew; Garcia-Pichel, Ferran

    2016-04-01

    Biological soil crusts (= biocrusts) are topsoil communities comprise of, but not limited to, cyanobacteria, algae, lichens, and mosses that grow intimately associated with soil particles in drylands. Biocrusts have central ecological roles in these areas as sources of carbon and nutrients, and efficiently retain water and prevent soil erosion, which improves soil structure and promotes soil fertility. However, human activities, such as cattle grazing, hiking or military training, are rapidly striking biocrusts. Although it is well known that the inoculation with cyanobacteria or lichens can enhance the recovery of biocrusts in degraded soils, little is known about the factors that control their growth rates. Using soil and inocula from four different sites located in one cold desert (Utah) and in one hot desert (New Mexico), we performed a fractional factorial experiment involving seven factors (water, light, P, N, calcium carbonate, trace metals and type of inoculum) to screen their effects on the growth of biocrusts. After four months, we measured the concentration of chlorophyll a, and we discovered that water, light and P, N or P+N were the most important factors controlling the growth of biocrusts. In the experimental treatments involving these three factors we measured a similar concentration of chlorophyll a (or even higher) to this found in the field locations. Amplification of the 16S rRNA gene segment using universal bacteria primers revealed a microbial community composition in the biocrusts grown that closely corresponds to initial measurements made on inocula. In summary, based on our success in obtaining biocrust biomass from natural communities in greenhouse facilities, without significantly changing its community composition at the phylum and cyanobacterial level, we are paving the road to propose a protocol to produce a high quality-nursed inoculum aiming to assist restoration of arid and semi-arid ecosystems affected by large-scale disturbances.

  13. A Comparison between 18F-FDG PET/CT Imaging and Biological and Radiological Findings in Restaging of Hepatoblastoma Patients

    PubMed Central

    Treglia, Giorgio; Pagano, Manuela; Fania, Piercarlo; Basso, Maria Eleonora; Fagioli, Franca; Ficola, Umberto

    2013-01-01

    Background. In this study we retrospectively evaluated if 18F-FDG-PET/CT provided incremental diagnostic information over CI in a group of hepatoblastoma patients performing restaging. Procedure. Nine patients (mean age: 5.9 years; range: 3.1–12 years) surgically treated for hepatoblastoma were followed up by clinical examination, serum α-FP monitoring, and US. CI (CT or MRI) and PET/CT were performed in case of suspicion of relapse. Fine-needle aspiration biopsies (FNAB) were carried out for final confirmation if the results of CI, PET/CT, and/or α-FP levels were suggestive of relapse. PET/CT and CI findings were analyzed for comparison purposes, using FNAB as reference standard. Results. α-FP level was suggestive of disease recurrence in 8/9 patients. Biopsy was performed in 8/9 cases. CI and PET/CT resulted to be concordant in 5/9 patients (CI identified recurrence of disease, but 18F-FDG-PET/CT provided a better definition of disease extent); in 4/9 cases, CI diagnostic information resulted in negative findings, whereas PET/CT correctly detected recurrence of disease. 18F-FDG-PET/CT showed an agreement of 100% (8/8) with FNAB results. Conclusions. 18F-FDG-PET/CT scan seems to better assess HB patients with respect to CI and may provide incremental diagnostic value in the restaging of this group of patients. PMID:24063012

  14. [TRIGLYCERIDE LEVELS AS A RISK FACTOR DURING PREGNANCY; BIOLOGICAL MODELING; SYSTEMATIC REVIEW].

    PubMed

    Aguilar Cordero, María José; Baena García, Laura; Sánchez López, Antonio Manuel; Guisado Barrilao, Rafael; Hermoso Rodríguez, Enrique; Mur Villar, Norma; Capel Tuñón, Manuel

    2015-08-01

    Introducción: algunas de las patologías que se pueden presentar en el embarazo (diabetes gestacional, hipertensión y preeclampsia) se están relacionando con un aumento del riesgo de padecer enfermedades cardiovasculares a lo largo de la vida. Esto se debe tener en cuenta en las futuras valoraciones de la salud de las mujeres. Uno de los biomarcadores más importantes en las enfermedades cardiovasculares es el nivel de triglicéridos, que experimenta un importante cambio durante la gestación. Objetivo: el objetivo de esta revisión es analizar los estudios que han investigado los niveles de triglicéridos durante el embarazo como factor de riesgo cardiovascular en las últimas semanas de gestación y en el parto. Métodos: se ha efectuado una búsqueda sistemática y se seleccionaron 14 artículos específicos sobre el tema, siguiendo las directrices PRISMA. Resultados: en el embarazo normal tiene lugar un descenso del nivel de lípidos en las primeras semanas, seguido de un aumento progresivo, especialmente notable a partir de la semana 12 de gestación. Este incremento de las concentraciones plasmáticas de lípidos circulantes se produce de forma lineal, hasta alcanzar un pico máximo unos días antes del parto. Esta subida se debe al aumento de los niveles de estrógenos y a la resistencia a la insulina. También se ha relacionado con los niveles de prolactina. Conclusiones: a través de la presente revisión se ha podido constatar la relación del aumento de los triglicéridos en algunas de las patologías o alteraciones más frecuentes en los embarazos de riesgo, en las que se produce una elevación significativamente mayor que en los embarazos normales. Es en este contexto en el que el modelado biológico puede cobrar una relevancia especial, facilitando la creación de modelos y curvas de percentiles aplicables a la población, y que permitan un seguimiento de los cambios en la trigliceridemia, que acaben señalando aquellas situaciones que pasan a ser

  15. Physicochemical and biological factors controlling water column metabolism in Sundarbans estuary, India

    PubMed Central

    2012-01-01

    Background Sundarbans is the single largest deltaic mangrove forest in the world, formed at estuarine phase of the Ganges - Brahmaputra river system. Primary productivity of marine and coastal phytoplankton contributes to 15% of global oceanic production. But unfortunately estuarine dynamics of tropical and subtropical estuaries have not yet received proper attention in spite of the fact that they experience considerable anthropogenic interventions and a baseline data is required for any future comparison. This study is an endeavor to this end to estimate the primary productivity (gross and net), community respiration and nitrification rates in different rivers and tidal creeks around Jharkhali island, a part of Sundarbans estuary surrounded by the mangrove forest during a period of three years starting from November’08 to October’11. Results Various physical and chemical parameters of water column like pH, temperature, conductivity, dissolved oxygen, turbidity, suspended particulate matter, secchi disc index, tidal fluctuation and tidal current velocity, standing crop and nutrients were measured along with water column productivity. Relationship of net water column productivity with algal biomass (standing crop), nutrient loading and turbidity were determined experimentally. Correlations of bacterial abundance with community respiration and nitrification rates were also explored. Annual integrated phytoplankton production rate of this tidal estuary was estimated to be 151.07 gC m-2 y-1. Gross primary productivity showed marked inter annual variation being lowest in monsoon and highest in postmonsoon period. Conclusion Average primary production was a function of nutrient loading and light penetration in the water column. High aquatic turbidity, conductivity and suspended particulate matter were the limiting factors to attenuate light penetration with negative influence on primary production. Community respiration and nitrification rates of the estuary were

  16. The Impact of Personality Factors and Preceding User Comments on the Processing of Research Findings on Deep Brain Stimulation: A Randomized Controlled Experiment in a Simulated Online Forum

    PubMed Central

    Feinkohl, Insa; Flemming, Danny; Cress, Ulrike

    2016-01-01

    Background Laypeople frequently discuss medical research findings on Web-based platforms, but little is known about whether they grasp the tentativeness that is inherent in these findings. Potential influential factors involved in understanding medical tentativeness have hardly been assessed to date. Objective The research presented here aimed to examine the effects of personality factors and of other users’ previous contributions in a Web-based forum on laypeople’s understanding of the tentativeness of medical research findings, using the example of research on deep brain stimulation. Methods We presented 70 university students with an online news article that reported findings on applying deep brain stimulation as a novel therapeutic method for depression, which participants were unfamiliar with. In a randomized controlled experiment, we manipulated the forum such that the article was either accompanied by user comments that addressed the issue of tentativeness, by comments that did not address this issue, or the article was accompanied by no comments at all. Participants were instructed to write their own individual user comments. Their scientific literacy, epistemological beliefs, and academic self-efficacy were measured. The outcomes measured were perceived tentativeness and tentativeness addressed in the participants’ own comments. Results More sophisticated epistemological beliefs enhanced the perception of tentativeness (standardized β=.26, P=.034). Greater scientific literacy (stand. β=.25, P=.025) and greater academic self-efficacy (stand. β=.31, P=.007) were both predictors of a more extensive discussion of tentativeness in participants’ comments. When forum posts presented in the experiment addressed the issue of tentativeness, participants’ subsequent behavior tended to be consistent with what they had read in the forum, F 2,63=3.66; P=.049, ηp 2=.092. Conclusions Students’ understanding of the tentativeness of research findings on deep

  17. Comparison of toxaphene congeners levels in five seal species from eastern Canada: what is the importance of biological factors?

    PubMed

    Gouteux, Bruno; Lebeuf, Michel; Hammill, Mike O; Muir, Derek C G; Gagné, Jean-Pierre

    2005-03-15

    Environmentally relevant chlorobornanes (CHBs) were measured in blubber samples of harbor (Phoca vitulina), gray (Halichoerus grypus), harp (Phoca groenlandica), and hooded seals (Cystophora cristata) sampled in different part of the St. Lawrence marine ecosystem (SLME) and ringed seals (Phoca hispida) sampled in the eastern Canadian Arctic waters. The purpose of this study was to compare the levels of six CHBs (Parlar-26, -40/-41, -44, -50, and -62) among the five seal species. Seal species could be separated into three groups based on their respective sigmaCHB mean concentrations (+/-standard error): gray (49+/-3.9 ng/g lipid weight) and harbor (80+/-20 ng/g lipid weight) seals were more contaminated than ringed seals (18+/-7.6 ng/g lipid weight) but less contaminated than harp (370+/-87 ng/g lipid weight) and hooded (680+/-310 ng/g lipid weight) seals. These differences are not expected to be related to different sources of toxaphene contamination, since both the SLME and the eastern Canadian Arctic environments are thought to be mainly contaminated via atmospheric transportfrom the southeastern part of the United States. Thus, biological factors such as sex, age, nutritive condition, metabolism capacity, and diet of the animals collected were considered. Results reported in this study indicated that the diet is likely the main factor accounting for interspecies variations in toxaphene contamination in seals from eastern Canada.

  18. Differential response of Pichia guilliermondii spoilage isolates to biological and physico-chemical factors prevailing in Patagonian wine fermentations.

    PubMed

    Lopes, Christian A; Sáez, Julieta S; Sangorrín, Marcela P

    2009-07-01

    Pichia guilliermondii can produce volatile phenols in the initial stages of wine fermentation; however, its response to different wine stress conditions has been poorly studied. In this work, we present an analysis of the response of 23 P. guilliermondii indigenous isolates to physical and chemical wine stress factors and to indigenous wine killer yeasts. Principal coordinates analysis (PCoA), based on data obtained from response patterns, was carried out to evaluate the relationships among the isolates. Major differences among the isolates were detected in media plates containing 8% ethanol and in those containing 280 g/L glucose. PCoA identified 3 clusters of isolates with different stress response patterns, indicating a relationship between the tolerance to these compounds and the origin of the isolates. Pichia guilliermondii isolates were sensitive to the toxins produced by the species Hanseniaspora uvarum, Metschnikowia pulcherrima, Wickerhamomyces anomala (ex Pichia anomala), and Pichia kluyveri, with a maximum level of sensitivity against W. anomala (91% on average). Those isolates obtained from fermenting must proved to be more resistant to killer yeasts than those obtained from grape surfaces. The combined evaluation of the response to physico-chemical and biological factors presented in this work could be a useful standard protocol for the evaluation of the potential spoilage capacity of yeasts in winemaking.

  19. Azadirachtin interacts with the tumor necrosis factor (TNF) binding domain of its receptors and inhibits TNF-induced biological responses.

    PubMed

    Thoh, Maikho; Kumar, Pankaj; Nagarajaram, Hampathalu A; Manna, Sunil K

    2010-02-19

    The role of azadirachtin, an active component of a medicinal plant Neem (Azadirachta indica), on TNF-induced cell signaling in human cell lines was investigated. Azadirachtin blocks TNF-induced activation of nuclear factor kappaB (NF-kappaB) and also expression of NF-kappaB-dependent genes such as adhesion molecules and cyclooxygenase 2. Azadirachtin inhibits the inhibitory subunit of NF-kappaB (IkappaB alpha) phosphorylation and thereby its degradation and RelA (p65) nuclear translocation. It blocks IkappaB alpha kinase (IKK) activity ex vivo, but not in vitro. Surprisingly, azadirachtin blocks NF-kappaB DNA binding activity in transfected cells with TNF receptor-associated factor (TRAF)2, TNF receptor-associated death domain (TRADD), IKK, or p65, but not with TNFR, suggesting its effect is at the TNFR level. Azadirachtin blocks binding of TNF, but not IL-1, IL-4, IL-8, or TNF-related apoptosis-inducing ligand (TRAIL) with its respective receptors. Anti-TNFR antibody or TNF protects azadirachtin-mediated down-regulation of TNFRs. Further, in silico data suggest that azadirachtin strongly binds in the TNF binding site of TNFR. Overall, our data suggest that azadirachtin modulates cell surface TNFRs thereby decreasing TNF-induced biological responses. Thus, azadirachtin exerts an anti-inflammatory response by a novel pathway, which may be beneficial for anti-inflammatory therapy.

  20. Cadmium contamination of tissues and organs of delphinids species (Stenella attenuata)--influence of biological and ecological factors

    SciTech Connect

    Andre, J.M.; Amiard, J.C.; Amiard-Triquet, C.; Boudou, A.; Ribeyre, F. )

    1990-12-01

    Based on a sample of 27 dolphins (Stenella attenuata) captured in the Eastern tropical zone of the Pacific Ocean, this study was carried out to analyze the cadmium accumulation levels and distribution in 12 organs or tissue samples. The average cadmium concentrations were between 0.2 mg Cd.kg-1 in the brain and muscle and 48 mg Cd.kg-1 in the kidneys. For most of organs and tissues the average values were between 1 and 5 mg Cd.kg-1. Kidneys, liver, muscle, and intestine contained almost 85% of the total cadmium burden of all tissues considered in this study. Most of the biological and ecological factors taken into account (age, sex, total weight, and length of the dolphins, weight of the organs, place and date of capture) interacted with the cadmium concentrations and burdens in the collected organs or tissues. Three factors appear to be of prime importance: age, body weight, and geographical location of the area of capture.

  1. Decorin Interacts with Connective Tissue Growth Factor (CTGF)/CCN2 by LRR12 Inhibiting Its Biological Activity*

    PubMed Central

    Vial, Cecilia; Gutiérrez, Jaime; Santander, Cristian; Cabrera, Daniel; Brandan, Enrique

    2011-01-01

    Fibrotic disorders are the end point of many chronic diseases in different tissues, where an accumulation of the extracellular matrix occurs, mainly because of the action of the connective tissue growth factor (CTGF/CCN2). Little is known about how this growth factor activity is regulated. We found that decorin null myoblasts are more sensitive to CTGF than wild type myoblasts, as evaluated by the accumulation of fibronectin or collagen III. Decorin added exogenously negatively regulated CTGF pro-fibrotic activity and the induction of actin stress fibers. Using co-immunoprecipitation and in vitro interaction assays, decorin and CTGF were shown to interact in a saturable manner with a Kd of 4.4 nm. This interaction requires the core protein of decorin. Experiments using the deletion mutant decorin indicated that the leucine-rich repeats (LRR) 10–12 are important for the interaction with CTGF and the negative regulation of the cytokine activity, moreover, a peptide derived from the LRR12 was able to inhibit CTGF-decorin complex formation and CTGF activity. Finally, we showed that CTGF specifically induced the synthesis of decorin, suggesting a mechanism of autoregulation. These results suggest that decorin interacts with CTGF and regulates its biological activity. PMID:21454550

  2. Bright versus dim ambient light affects subjective well-being but not serotonin-related biological factors.

    PubMed

    Stemer, Bettina; Melmer, Andreas; Fuchs, Dietmar; Ebenbichler, Christoph; Kemmler, Georg; Deisenhammer, Eberhard A

    2015-10-30

    Light falling on the retina is converted into an electrical signal which stimulates serotonin synthesis. Previous studies described an increase of plasma and CNS serotonin levels after bright light exposure. Ghrelin and leptin are peptide hormones which are involved in the regulation of hunger/satiety and are related to serotonin. Neopterin and kynurenine are immunological markers which are also linked to serotonin biosynthesis. In this study, 29 healthy male volunteers were exposed to bright (5000lx) and dim (50lx) light conditions for 120min in a cross-over manner. Subjective well-being and hunger as well as various serotonin associated plasma factors were assessed before and after light exposure. Subjective well-being showed a small increase under bright light and a small decrease under dim light, resulting in a significant interaction between light condition and time. Ghrelin concentrations increased significantly under both light conditions, but there was no interaction between light and time. Correspondingly, leptin decreased significantly under both light conditions. Hunger increased significantly with no light-time interaction. We also found a significant decrease of neopterin, tryptophan and tyrosine levels, but no interaction between light and time. In conclusion, ambient light was affecting subjective well-being rather than serotonin associated biological factors.

  3. Biological Correlates of Intimate Partner Violence Perpetration

    PubMed Central

    Pinto, Lavinia A.; Sullivan, Eric L.; Rosenbaum, Alan; Wyngarden, Nicole; Umhau, John C.; Miller, Mark W.; Taft, Casey T.

    2013-01-01

    An extensive literature documents biological correlates of general aggression, but there has been less focus on biological correlates of intimate partner violence (IPV). The purpose of this review is to summarize the research literature to date that has reported on biological factors in IPV perpetration. We review the existing literature on four domains of biological processes that have been examined with respect to IPV perpetration, including: head injury and neuropsychology; psychophysiology; neurochemistry, metabolism and endocrinology; and genetics. We critique the literature, discuss the clinical relevance of research findings, and provide some recommendations for future biologically-oriented IPV research. PMID:23393423

  4. Do citations and impact factors relate to the real numbers in publications? A case study of citation rates, impact, and effect sizes in ecology and evolutionary biology.

    PubMed

    Lortie, Christopher J; Aarssen, Lonnie W; Budden, Amber E; Leimu, Roosa

    2013-02-01

    Metrics of success or impact in academia may do more harm than good. To explore the value of citations, the reported efficacy of treatments in ecology and evolution from close to 1,500 publications was examined. If citation behavior is rationale, i.e. studies that successfully applied a treatment and detected greater biological effects are cited more frequently, then we predict that larger effect sizes increases study relative citation rates. This prediction was not supported. Citations are likely thus a poor proxy for the quantitative merit of a given treatment in ecology and evolutionary biology-unlike evidence-based medicine wherein the success of a drug or treatment on human health is one of the critical attributes. Impact factor of the journal is a broader metric, as one would expect, but it also unrelated to the mean effect sizes for the respective populations of publications. The interpretation by the authors of the treatment effects within each study differed depending on whether the hypothesis was supported or rejected. Significantly larger effect sizes were associated with rejection of a hypothesis. This suggests that only the most rigorous studies reporting negative results are published or that authors set a higher burden of proof in rejecting a hypothesis. The former is likely true to a major extent since only 29 % of the studies rejected the hypotheses tested. These findings indicate that the use of citations to identify important papers in this specific discipline-at least in terms of designing a new experiment or contrasting treatments-is of limited value.

  5. Modulation of circulating angiogenic factors and tumor biology by aerobic training in breast cancer patients receiving neoadjuvant chemotherapy.

    PubMed

    Jones, Lee W; Fels, Diane R; West, Miranda; Allen, Jason D; Broadwater, Gloria; Barry, William T; Wilke, Lee G; Masko, Elisabeth; Douglas, Pamela S; Dash, Rajesh C; Povsic, Thomas J; Peppercorn, Jeffrey; Marcom, P Kelly; Blackwell, Kimberly L; Kimmick, Gretchen; Turkington, Timothy G; Dewhirst, Mark W

    2013-09-01

    Aerobic exercise training (AET) is an effective adjunct therapy to attenuate the adverse side-effects of adjuvant chemotherapy in women with early breast cancer. Whether AET interacts with the antitumor efficacy of chemotherapy has received scant attention. We carried out a pilot study to explore the effects of AET in combination with neoadjuvant doxorubicin-cyclophosphamide (AC+AET), relative to AC alone, on: (i) host physiology [exercise capacity (VO2 peak), brachial artery flow-mediated dilation (BA-FMD)], (ii) host-related circulating factors [circulating endothelial progenitor cells (CEP) cytokines and angiogenic factors (CAF)], and (iii) tumor phenotype [tumor blood flow ((15)O-water PET), tissue markers (hypoxia and proliferation), and gene expression] in 20 women with operable breast cancer. AET consisted of three supervised cycle ergometry sessions/week at 60% to 100% of VO2 peak, 30 to 45 min/session, for 12 weeks. There was significant time × group interactions for VO2 peak and BA-FMD, favoring the AC+AET group (P < 0.001 and P = 0.07, respectively). These changes were accompanied by significant time × group interactions in CEPs and select CAFs [placenta growth factor, interleukin (IL)-1β, and IL-2], also favoring the AC+AET group (P < 0.05). (15)O-water positron emission tomography (PET) imaging revealed a 38% decrease in tumor blood flow in the AC+AET group. There were no differences in any tumor tissue markers (P > 0.05). Whole-genome microarray tumor analysis revealed significant differential modulation of 57 pathways (P < 0.01), including many that converge on NF-κB. Data from this exploratory study provide initial evidence that AET can modulate several host- and tumor-related pathways during standard chemotherapy. The biologic and clinical implications remain to be determined.

  6. Significant effects of birth-related biological factors on pre-adolescent nutritional status among rural Sundanese in West Java, Indonesia.

    PubMed

    Sekiyama, Makiko; Ohtsuka, Ryutaro

    2005-07-01

    The Sundanese inhabiting West Java, the second largest ethnic group in Indonesia, are characterized by a high prevalence of child malnutrition, together with high fertility. Based on an anthropometric measurement and interview survey of 310 children aged 5-12 years in a rural Sundanese village, this study examined the relative significance of the effects of eight biological, eight socioeconomic status (SES) and four health behavioural factors on their Z scores for height-for-age (HAZ) and weight-for-age (WAZ) in particular. Three biological factors, i.e. birth interval, birth weight and mother's body weight, and one SES factor, i.e. mother's occupation, were selected as the predictors of the two Z scores by regression analysis, indicating more significant effects of the biological factors than the other factors. This pattern is judged to occur in less-developed and high-fertility populations. Since these two Z scores were worse in the subject children than in the under-5-year-old children from the same village, more attention should be paid to the long-lasting effects of birth-related biological factors up to pre-adolescent ages, as an insufficient nutritional status tends to damage growth and health in adolescence and adulthood.

  7. Machismo, Marianismo, and Negative Cognitive-Emotional Factors: Findings From the Hispanic Community Health Study/Study of Latinos Sociocultural Ancillary Study.

    PubMed

    Nuñez, Alicia; González, Patricia; Talavera, Gregory A; Sanchez-Johnsen, Lisa; Roesch, Scott C; Davis, Sonia M; Arguelles, William; Womack, Veronica Y; Ostrovsky, Natania W; Ojeda, Lizette; Penedo, Frank J; Gallo, Linda C

    2016-11-01

    There is limited research on the traditional Hispanic male and female gender roles of machismo and marianismo, respectively, in relation to negative cognitions and emotions. Given the vulnerability of Hispanics to negative cognitions and emotions, it is important to examine sociocultural correlates of emotional distress. Therefore, we examined associations of machismo and marianismo with negative cognitive-emotional factors (i.e., depression symptoms; cynical hostility; and trait anxiety and anger) in the Hispanic Community Health Study/Study of Latinos Sociocultural Ancillary Study, a cross-sectional cohort study of sociocultural and psychosocial correlates of cardiometabolic health. Participants were aged 18-74 years and self-identified as Hispanic of Central American, Cuban, Dominican, Mexican, Puerto Rican, South American, and other Hispanic background (N = 4,426). Results revealed that specific components of machismo (traditional machismo) and marianismo (family and spiritual pillar dimensions) were associated with higher levels of negative cognitions and emotions after adjusting for socio-demographic factors (p < .05); these associations remained consistent across sex, Hispanic background group, and acculturation. Findings can inform mental health interventions and contribute to our understanding of the importance of gender role socialization in the context of self-reported negative cognitive-emotional factors in Hispanics.

  8. Evaluation of the biological differences of canine and human factor VIII in gene delivery: implications in human hemophilia treatment

    PubMed Central

    Wang, Qizhao; Dong, Biao; Firrman, Jenni; Wu, Wenman; Roberts, Sean; Moore, Andrea Rossi; Liu, LinShu; Chin, Mario P.S.; Diao, Yong; Kost, Joseph; Xiao, Weidong

    2016-01-01

    The canine is the most important large animal model for testing novel hemophilia A(HA) treatment. It is often necessary to use canine factor VIII (cFIII) gene or protein for the evaluation of HA treatment in the canine model. However, the different biological properties between cFVIII and human FVIII(hFVIII) indicated that the development of novel HA treatment may require careful characterization of non-human FVIII. To investigate whether the data obtained using cFVIII can translate to HA treatment in human, we analyzed the differential biological properties of canine heavy chain (cHC) and light chain (cLC) by comparing with human HC (hHC) and LC (hLC). The secretion of cHC was 5~30 fold higher than hHC, with or without LCs. cHC+hLC group exhibited ~18-fold increase in coagulation activity compared with hHC+hLC delivery by recombinant adeno-associated viral vectors. Unlike hHC, the secretion of cHC was independent of LCs. cLC improves the specific activity of FVIII by 2~3-fold compared with hLC. Moreover, the cLC but not cHC, contributes the high stability of cFVIII. Our results suggested that the cFVIII expression results in the canine model should be interpreted with caution as the cHC secreted more efficiently than hHC and cLC exhibited a more active and stable phenotype than hLC. PMID:27064790

  9. Evaluation of the biological differences of canine and human factor VIII in gene delivery: implications in human hemophilia treatment.

    PubMed

    Wang, Q; Dong, B; Firrman, J; Wu, W; Roberts, S; Moore, A R; Liu, L S; Chin, M P S; Diao, Y; Kost, J; Xiao, W

    2016-07-01

    The canine is the most important large animal model for testing novel hemophilia A (HA) treatment. It is often necessary to use canine factor VIII (cFIII) gene or protein for the evaluation of HA treatment in the canine model. However, different biological properties between cFVIII and human FVIII (hFVIII) indicated that the development of novel HA treatment may require careful characterization of non-human FVIII. To investigate whether the data obtained using cFVIII can translate to HA treatment in human, we analyzed the differential biological properties of canine heavy chain (cHC) and light chain (cLC) by comparing with human heavy chain (hHC) and light chain (hLC). The secretion of cHC was 5-30-fold higher than hHC, with or without light chains (LCs). cHC+hLC group exhibited ~18-fold increase in coagulation activity compared with hHC+hLC delivery by recombinant adeno-associated viral vectors. Unlike hHC, the secretion of cHC was independent of LCs. cLC improves the specific activity of FVIII by two- to threefold compared with hLC. Moreover, the cLC, but not cHC, contributes to the higher stability of cFVIII. Our results suggested that the cFVIII expression results in the canine model should be interpreted with caution as the cHC secreted more efficiently than hHC and cLC exhibited a more active and stable phenotype than hLC.

  10. Biological characteristics and epidermal growth factor receptor tyrosine kinase inhibitors efficacy of EGFR mutation and its subtypes in lung adenocarcinoma.

    PubMed

    Lu, Rong-Li; Hu, Cheng-Ping; Yang, Hua-Ping; Li, Yuan-Yuan; Gu, Qi-Hua; Wu, Lielin

    2014-04-01

    Mutation of epidermal growth factor receptor (EGFR) gene has been reported to be present in lung adenocarcinoma (LAC). In this study, we extensively investigated the impact of patients' biological characteristics on EGFR mutation and the impact of EGFR mutation subtypes on targeted therapy of advanced LAC. We examined EGFR exons18to21status in169 LAC patients by direct sequencing to study the impact of patients' biological characteristics on the EGFR mutational spectrum. And then, 59 patients with advanced LAC harboring EGFR exon 19 deletions(del 19) or exon 21 point mutation(L858R) mutations received first-line treatment of gefitinib or erlotinib, the efficacy of treatment, and the progression-free survival (PFS) of these patients were recorded. The frequency of the EGFR mutation and its subtypes and the variables associated with the EGFR mutation after removing the confound factors were investigated by the logistic analysis using all samples (n = 169). The EGFR mutation was significantly associated with well-differentiated tumor and excessive household cooking fumes(P < 0.05). The deletions in exon 19 were more frequently associated with well-differentiated tumor (P < 0.05). The overall frequency of the EGFR mutation was 49 %. Then the impact of EGFR mutation subtypes on targeted therapy were investigated by the retrospective analysis on 59 advanced LAC patients with del 19 or L858R mutations and treated first-line with erlotinib or gefitinib. The deletions in exon 19 got longer PFS (P < 0.05). But there were no differences in PFS between erlotinib therapy and gefitinib therapy. EGFR mutations were more frequently in high tumor differentiation and excessive household cooking fumes LAC. The del 19 mutation rate is relatively high with a high differentiation degree in advanced lung adenocarcinoma. The deletions in exon 19 may benefit more from first-line targeted therapy of advanced LAC compared with exon 21 point mutation L858R. There was no

  11. Rock Finding

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Rommel-Esham, Katie; Constable, Susan D.

    2006-01-01

    In this article, the authors discuss a literature-based activity that helps students discover the importance of making detailed observations. In an inspiring children's classic book, "Everybody Needs a Rock" by Byrd Baylor (1974), the author invites readers to go "rock finding," laying out 10 rules for finding a "perfect" rock. In this way, the…

  12. The 5th National Audit Project (NAP5) on accidental awareness during general anaesthesia: summary of main findings and risk factors.

    PubMed

    Pandit, J J; Andrade, J; Bogod, D G; Hitchman, J M; Jonker, W R; Lucas, N; Mackay, J H; Nimmo, A F; O'Connor, K; O'Sullivan, E P; Paul, R G; Palmer, J H MacG; Plaat, F; Radcliffe, J J; Sury, M R J; Torevell, H E; Wang, M; Hainsworth, J; Cook, T M

    2014-10-01

    We present the main findings of the 5th National Audit Project on accidental awareness during general anaesthesia. Incidences were estimated using reports of accidental awareness as the numerator, and a parallel national anaesthetic activity survey to provide denominator data. The incidence of certain/probable and possible accidental awareness cases was ~1:19 600 anaesthetics (95% CI 1:16 700-23 450). However, there was considerable variation across subtypes of techniques or subspecialties. The incidence with neuromuscular blockade was ~1:8200 (1:7030-9700), and without it was ~1:135 900 (1:78 600-299 000). The cases of accidental awareness during general anaesthesia reported to 5th National Audit Project were overwhelmingly cases of unintended awareness during neuromuscular blockade. The incidence of accidental awareness during caesarean section was ~1:670 (1:380-1300). Two thirds (82, 66%) of cases of accidental awareness experiences arose in the dynamic phases of anaesthesia, namely induction of and emergence from anaesthesia. During induction of anaesthesia, contributory factors included: use of thiopental; rapid sequence induction; obesity; difficult airway management; neuromuscular blockade; and interruptions of anaesthetic delivery during movement from anaesthetic room to theatre. During emergence from anaesthesia, residual paralysis was perceived by patients as accidental awareness, and commonly related to a failure to ensure full return of motor capacity. One third (43, 33%) of accidental awareness events arose during the maintenance phase of anaesthesia, most due to problems at induction or towards the end of anaesthesia. Factors increasing the risk of accidental awareness included: female sex; age (younger adults, but not children); obesity; anaesthetist seniority (junior trainees); previous awareness; out-of-hours operating; emergencies; type of surgery (obstetric, cardiac, thoracic); and use of neuromuscular blockade. The following factors were

  13. Novel factors in the pathogenesis of psoriasis and potential drug candidates are found with systems biology approach.

    PubMed

    Manczinger, Máté; Kemény, Lajos

    2013-01-01

    Psoriasis is a multifactorial inflammatory skin disease characterized by increased proliferation of keratinocytes, activation of immune cells and susceptibility to metabolic syndrome. Systems biology approach makes it possible to reveal novel important factors in the pathogenesis of the disease. Protein-protein, protein-DNA, merged (containing both protein-protein and protein-DNA interactions) and chemical-protein interaction networks were constructed consisting of differentially expressed genes (DEG) between lesional and non-lesional skin samples of psoriatic patients and/or the encoded proteins. DEGs were determined by microarray meta-analysis using MetaOMICS package. We used STRING for protein-protein, CisRED for protein-DNA and STITCH for chemical-protein interaction network construction. General network-, cluster- and motif-analysis were carried out in each network. Many DEG-coded proteins (CCNA2, FYN, PIK3R1, CTGF, F3) and transcription factors (AR, TFDP1, MEF2A, MECOM) were identified as central nodes, suggesting their potential role in psoriasis pathogenesis. CCNA2, TFDP1 and MECOM might play role in the hyperproliferation of keratinocytes, whereas FYN may be involved in the disturbed immunity in psoriasis. AR can be an important link between inflammation and insulin resistance, while MEF2A has role in insulin signaling. A controller sub-network was constructed from interlinked positive feedback loops that with the capability to maintain psoriatic lesional phenotype. Analysis of chemical-protein interaction networks detected 34 drugs with previously confirmed disease-modifying effects, 23 drugs with some experimental evidences, and 21 drugs with case reports suggesting their positive or negative effects. In addition, 99 unpublished drug candidates were also found, that might serve future treatments for psoriasis.

  14. Biologic Activity of Autologous, Granulocyte-Macrophage Colony Stimulating Factor Secreting Alveolar Soft Parts Sarcoma and Clear Cell Sarcoma Vaccines

    PubMed Central

    Goldberg, John; Fisher, David E.; Demetri, George D.; Neuberg, Donna; Allsop, Stephen A.; Fonseca, Catia; Nakazaki, Yukoh; Nemer, David; Raut, Chandrajit P.; George, Suzanne; Morgan, Jeffrey A.; Wagner, Andrew J.; Freeman, Gordon J.; Ritz, Jerome; Lezcano, Cecilia; Mihm, Martin; Canning, Christine; Hodi, F. Stephen; Dranoff, Glenn

    2015-01-01

    Purpose Alveolar soft parts sarcoma (ASPS) and clear cell sarcoma (CCS) are rare mesenchymal malignancies driven by chromosomal translocations that activate members of the microphthalmia transcription factor (MITF) family. However, in contrast to malignant melanoma, little is known about their immunogenicity. To learn more about the host response to ASPS and CCS, we conducted a phase I clinical trial of vaccination with irradiated, autologous sarcoma cells engineered by adenoviral mediated gene transfer to secrete granulocyte-macrophage colony stimulating factor (GM-CSF). Experimental Design Metastatic tumors from ASPS and CCS patients were resected, processed to single cell suspensions, transduced with a replication defective adenoviral vector encoding GM-CSF, and irradiated. Immunizations were administered subcutaneously and intradermally weekly times three and then every other week. Results Vaccines were successfully manufactured for 11 of the 12 enrolled patients. Eleven subjects received from 3 to 13 immunizations. Toxicities were restricted to grade 1–2 skin reactions at inoculation sites. Vaccination elicited local dendritic cell infiltrates and stimulated T cell mediated delayed type-hypersensitivity reactions to irradiated, autologous tumor cells. Antibody responses to tissue-type plasminogen activator (tTPA) and angiopoietins-1/2 were detected. Tumor biopsies showed programmed death-1 (PD-1) positive CD8+ T cells in association with PD ligand-1 (PD-L1) expressing sarcoma cells. No tumor regressions were observed. Conclusions Vaccination with irradiated, GM-CSF secreting autologous sarcoma cell vaccines is feasible, safe, and biologically active. Concurrent targeting of angiogenic cytokines and antagonism of the PD-1 negative regulatory pathway might intensify immune-mediated tumor destruction. PMID:25805798

  15. Skin parasitism by Paratrichosoma recurvum in wild American crocodiles and its relation to environmental and biological factors.

    PubMed

    Charruau, Pierre; Pérez-Flores, Jonathan S; Labarre, Didier

    2017-01-24

    Paratrichosma spp. are capillarid worms that parasitize the abdominal skin of crocodiles. They are likely not a threat to crocodiles' health, but they affect the skins' commercial value. No successful treatment exists against this parasite, and present knowledge of its life cycle is limited. Herein we report new information on Paratrichosoma recurvum occurrence in wild American crocodiles Crocodylus acutus from Mexican Caribbean islands and its relation to environmental (water salinity, temperature, climatic events) and biological (body condition) factors. The percentage of parasitized crocodiles (30.3%) is among the highest recorded in wild crocodilian populations. Small (<40.8 cm total length [TL]) and large (>270 cm TL) crocodiles are less parasitized, probably due to the characteristics of their skin or of the parasite life cycle. Two individuals appeared to have eliminated worms naturally between their capture and recapture. The thorax-abdomen is the most parasitized area of the body of crocodiles. The risk of infection is not associated with the sex of the crocodile, but there was a difference in the proportion of parasitized crocodiles between sites, which could be related to different environmental conditions. The body condition of a crocodile does not seem to be affected by the parasite. Climatic events and water temperature show no effect on the parasitism of crocodiles, but salinity could have an effect. The infection of crocodiles by P. recurvum could depend more on an individual's behavior than on environmental conditions.

  16. Preparation of biologically active platelet-derived growth factor type BB from a fusion protein expressed in Escherichia coli

    SciTech Connect

    Hoppe, J.; Weich, H.A.; Eichner, W. )

    1989-04-04

    Preparations of the mitogen platelet-derived growth factor (PDGF) from human platelets contain two related polypeptides termed A chain and B chain. PDGF-B is highly homologous to a portion of p28{sup v-sis}, the transforming protein of simian sarcoma virus. The authors have studied the mitogenic potential of a PDGF-BB-like homodimer by expressing the sequence coding for the mature part of PDGF-B in Escherichia coli. Expression was achieved as cro-{beta}-gal-PDGF-B fusion protein which was exclusively found in the inclusion bodies. A monomeric PDGF-B fragment shortened by 12 amino acid residues from the NH{sub 2} terminus was excised from the fusion protein by CNBr cleavage. After protection of thiols by S-sulfonation, this fragment was purified by gel permeation chromatography and reversed-phase high-performance liquid chromatography. This monomeric protein was dimerized in the presence of a mixture of reduced and oxidized glutathione to yield biologically active rPDGF-BB with an overall yield of {approx}0.7 mg of rPDGF-BB/L of culture. Escherichia coli rPDGF-BB stimulated ({sup 3}H)thymidine incorporation into AKR2B fibroblast at concentrations of about 1 ng/mL.

  17. Understanding public responses to chemical, biological, radiological and nuclear incidents--driving factors, emerging themes and research gaps.

    PubMed

    Krieger, Kristian; Amlôt, Richard; Rogers, M Brooke

    2014-11-01

    This paper discusses the management of public responses to incidents involving chemical, biological, radiological and nuclear materials (CBRN). Given the extraordinary technical and operational challenges of a response to a CBRN release including, but not limited to, hazard detection and identification, casualty decontamination and multi-agency co-ordination, it is not surprising that public psychological and behavioural responses to such incidents have received limited attention by scholars and practitioners alike. As a result, a lack of understanding about the role of the public in effective emergency response constitutes a major gap in research and practice. This limitation must be addressed as a CBRN release has the potential to have wide-reaching psychological and behavioural impacts which, in turn, impact upon public morbidity and mortality rates. This paper addresses a number of key issues: why public responses matter; how responses have been conceptualised by practitioners; what factors have been identified as influencing public responses to a CBRN release and similar extreme events, and what further analysis is needed in order to generate a better understanding of public responses to inform the management of public responses to a CBRN release.

  18. Expression of biologically recombinant human acidic fibroblast growth factor in Arabidopsis thaliana seeds via oleosin fusion technology.

    PubMed

    Yang, Jing; Guan, Lili; Guo, Yongxin; Du, Linna; Wang, Fawei; Wang, Yanfang; Zhen, Lu; Wang, Qingman; Zou, Deyi; Chen, Wei; Yu, Lei; Li, Haiyan; Li, Xiaokun

    2015-07-15

    The potential of oleosins to act as carriers for recombinant foreign proteins in plant cells has been established. Using the oleosin fusion technology, the protein can be targeted to oil bodies in oilseeds by fusing it to the N- or C-terminus of oleosin. In this study, aFGF was expressed in Arabidopsis thaliana seeds via oleosin fusion technology. A plant-preferred aFGF gene was synthesized by optimizing codon usage and was fused to the C-terminus of the A. thaliana 18.5kDa oleosin gene. The fusion gene was driven by the phaseolin promoter to confer seed-specific expression of the human acidic fibroblast growth factor in A. thaliana. The T-DNA region of the recombinant plasmid pKO-aFGF was introduced into the genome of Arabidopsis thaliana by the floral dip method. The aFGF protein expression was confirmed by SDS-PAGE and western blotting. The biological activity showed that oil bodies fused to aFGF stimulated NIH/3T3 cell proliferation activity.

  19. Insecure attachment style as a vulnerability factor for depression: recent findings in a community-based study of Malay single and married mothers.

    PubMed

    Abdul Kadir, Nor Ba'yah; Bifulco, Antonia

    2013-12-30

    The role of marital breakdown in women's mental health is of key concern in Malaysia and internationally. A cross-sectional questionnaire study of married and separated/divorced and widowed women examined insecure attachment style as an associated risk factor for depression among 1002 mothers in an urban community in Malaysia. A previous report replicated a UK-based vulnerability-provoking agent model of depression involving negative evaluation of self (NES) and negative elements in close relationships (NECRs) interacting with severe life events to model depression. This article reports on the additional contribution of insecure attachment style to the model using the Vulnerable Attachment Style Questionnaire (VASQ). The results showed that VASQ scores were highly correlated with NES, NECR and depression. A multiple regression analysis of depression with backward elimination found that VASQ scores had a significant additional effect. Group comparisons showed different risk patterns for single and married mothers. NES was the strongest risk factor for both groups, with the 'anxious style' subset of the VASQ being the best additional predictor for married mothers and the total VASQ score (general attachment insecurity) for single mothers. The findings indicate that attachment insecurity adds to a psychosocial vulnerability model of depression among mothers cross-culturally and is important in understanding and identifying risk.

  20. Associations of maternal 25-hydroxyvitamin D in pregnancy with offspring cardiovascular risk factors in childhood and adolescence: findings from the Avon Longitudinal Study of Parents and Children

    PubMed Central

    Williams, Dylan M; Fraser, Abigail; Fraser, William D; Hyppönen, Elina; Davey Smith, George; Deanfield, John; Hingorani, Aroon; Sattar, Naveed; Lawlor, Debbie A

    2013-01-01

    Objective Lower maternal vitamin D status in pregnancy may be associated with increased offspring cardiovascular risk in later life, but evidence for this is scant. We examined associations of maternal total 25-hydroxyvitamin D (25(OH)D) in pregnancy with offspring cardiovascular risk factors assessed in childhood and adolescence. Design A longitudinal, prospective study. Setting The study was based on data from mother–offspring pairs in the Avon Longitudinal Study of Parents and Children (ALSPAC), a UK prospective population-based birth cohort (N=4109). Outcome measures Offspring cardiovascular risk factors were measured in childhood (mean age 9.9 years) and in adolescence (mean age 15.4 years): blood pressure, lipids, apolipoproteins (at 9.9 years only), glucose and insulin (at 15.4 years only), C reactive protein (CRP), and interleukin 6 (at 9.9 years only) were measured. Results After adjustments for potential confounders (maternal age, education, body mass index (BMI), smoking, physical activity, parity, socioeconomic position, ethnicity, and offspring gestational age at 25(OH)D sampling; gender, age, and BMI at outcome assessment), maternal 25(OH)D was inversely associated with systolic blood pressure (−0.48 mm Hg difference per 50 nmol/L increase in 25(OH)D; 95% CI −0.95 to −0.01), Apo-B (−0.01 mg/dL difference; 95% CI −0.02 to −0.001), and CRP (−6.1% difference; 95% CI −11.5% to −0.3%) at age 9.9 years. These associations were not present for risk factors measured at 15.4 years, with the exception of a weak inverse association with CRP (−5.5% difference; 95% CI −11.4% to 0.8%). There was no strong evidence of associations with offspring triglycerides, glucose or insulin. Conclusions Our findings suggest that fetal exposure to 25(OH)D is unlikely to influence cardiovascular risk factors of individuals later in life. PMID:24125739

  1. CSF 5-HIAA and DST non-suppression--orthogonal biologic risk factors for suicide in male mood disorder inpatients.

    PubMed

    Jokinen, Jussi; Nordström, Anna-Lena; Nordström, Peter

    2009-01-30

    Two biomarkers of suicide risk; non-suppression in the dexamethasone suppression test (DST) and low 5-hydroxyindoleacetic acid (5-HIAA) in the cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) have been reported to be predictors of suicide in mood disorders. The interrelation of the two systems seems to be different in suicide attempters compared with depressed inpatients who have not made a suicide attempt, indicating that the two biomarkers may be seen as independent. This investigation examined the interrelation of low CSF 5-HIAA and DST non-suppression in suicide victims with mood disorder. Fifty-eight mood disorder inpatients not receiving any treatment with antidepressants underwent lumbar puncture and the DST. Plasma cortisol levels at 8:00 a.m., 4:00 p.m. and 11:00 p.m. were analysed in relation to CSF 5-HIAA. All patients were followed up for causes of death and suicides were verified with death certificates. During follow-up (mean 21 years), 11 (19%) patients had committed suicide. In male suicide victims (n=6), the serum cortisol level at 4:00 p.m. showed a significant positive correlation with CSF 5-HIAA. Low CSF 5-HIAA predicted all early suicides (within 1 year), whereas all males who committed suicide after 1 year were DST non-suppressors. In female suicide victims (n=5), the post-DST serum cortisol did not correlate with CSF 5-HIAA. Low CSF 5-HIAA and DST non-suppression are orthogonal biologic risk factors for suicide in male mood disorder inpatients. CSF 5-HIAA is associated with short-term suicide risk; dysregulation of the hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal axis seems to be a long-term suicide predictor.

  2. Clinical Findings and Pain Symptoms as Potential Risk Factors for Chronic TMD: Descriptive Data and Empirically Identified Domains from the OPPERA Case-Control Study

    PubMed Central

    Ohrbach, Richard; Fillingim, Roger B.; Mulkey, Flora; Gonzalez, Yoly; Gordon, Sharon; Gremillion, Henry; Lim, Pei-Feng; Ribeiro-Dasilva, Margarete; Greenspan, Joel D.; Knott, Charles; Maixner, William; Slade, Gary

    2011-01-01

    Clinical characteristics might be associated with temporomandibular disorders (TMD) because they are antecedent risk factors that increase the likelihood of a healthy person developing the condition or because they represent signs or symptoms of either subclinical or overt TMD. In this baseline case-control study of the multisite Orofacial Pain: Prospective Evaluation and Risk Assessment (OPPERA) project, 1,633 controls and 185 cases with chronic, painful TMD completed questionnaires and received clinical examinations. Odds ratios measuring association between each clinical factor and TMD were computed, with adjustment for study-site as well as age, sex, and race/ethnicity. Compared to controls, TMD cases reported more trauma, greater parafunction, more headaches and other pain disorders, more functional limitation in using the jaw, more nonpain symptoms in the facial area, more temporomandibular joint noises and jaw locking, more neural or sensory medical conditions, and worse overall medical status. They also exhibited on examination reduced jaw mobility, more joint noises, and a greater number of painful masticatory, cervical, and body muscles upon palpation. The results indicated that TMD cases differ substantially from controls across almost all variables assessed. Future analyses of follow-up data will determine whether these clinical characteristics predict increased risk for developing first-onset pain-related TMD Perspective Clinical findings from OPPERA’s baseline case-control study indicate significant differences between chronic TMD cases and controls with respect to trauma history, parafunction, other pain disorders, health status, and clinical examination data. Future analyses will examine their contribution to TMD onset. PMID:22074750

  3. Use of anti-tumor necrosis factor biologics in the treatment of rheumatoid arthritis does not change human T-lymphotropic virus type 1 markers: a case series.

    PubMed

    Umekita, Kunihiko; Umeki, Kazumi; Miyauchi, Shunichi; Ueno, Shiro; Kubo, Kazuyoshi; Kusumoto, Norio; Takajo, Ichiro; Nagatomo, Yasuhiro; Okayama, Akihiko

    2015-09-01

    Anti-tumor necrosis factor (anti-TNF) biologics are effective in the treatment of rheumatoid arthritis (RA); however, it is still not clear whether this treatment promotes the development of malignancies such as lymphoma. Human T-lymphotropic virus type 1 (HTLV-1), which is a causative agent of adult T-cell lymphoma (ATL), is prevalent in Japan. Many HTLV-1-positive patients with RA are assumed to exist; however, there have thus far been no reports on the effect of anti-TNF biologics on HTLV-1-positive patients. We analyzed the response to treatment with anti-TNF biologics and change of HTLV-1 markers in two cases of RA. The two cases showed no response based on the European League Against of Rheumatism response criteria 60-96 weeks after administration of anti-TNF biologics (infliximab and etanercept). No signs of ATL were observed and HTLV-1 markers, such as proviral load and clonality of HTLV-1-infected cells, showed no significant change in either of two cases. Therefore, treatment with anti-TNF biologics did not induce activation of HTLV-1, although the effect on RA was not as effective as in HTLV-1-negative patients in this limited study. Further long-term study with a greater number of patients is necessary to clarify the safety and efficacy of anti-TNF biologics in HTLV-1-positive patients with RA.

  4. Biological and Environmental Correlates of Developmental Outcomes of Prematurely Born Infants in Early Adolescence.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Levy-Shiff, Rachel; And Others

    1994-01-01

    Examined the role of biological factors, such as perinatal complications, and psychological factors, such as maternal attitudes, in predicting developmental outcomes in preterm children. Findings support the main effects model of biological and environmental factors in explaining developmental psychopathology, but also the interactional model, as…

  5. Factors affecting uncertainty in lung nodule volume estimation with CT: comparisons of findings from two estimation methods in a phantom study

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Li, Qin; Gavrielides, Marios A.; Zeng, Rongping; Myers, Kyle J.; Sahiner, Berkman; Petrick, Nicholas

    2015-03-01

    This work aimed to compare two different types of volume estimation methods (a model-based and a segmentationbased method) in terms of identifying factors affecting measurement uncertainty. Twenty-nine synthetic nodules with varying size, radiodensity, and shape were placed in an anthropomorphic thoracic phantom and scanned with a 16- detector row CT scanner. Ten repeat scans were acquired using three exposures and two slice collimations, and were reconstructed with varying slice thicknesses. Nodule volumes were estimated from the reconstructed data using a matched-filter and a segmentation approach. Log transformed volumes were used to obtain measurement error with truth obtained through micro-CT. ANOVA and multiple linear regression were applied to measurement error to identify significant factors affecting volume estimation for each method. Root mean square of measurement errors (RMSE) for meaningful subgroups, repeatability coefficients (RC) for different imaging protocols, and reproducibility coefficients (RDC) for thin and thick collimation conditions were evaluated. Results showed that for both methods, nodule size, shape and slice thickness were significant factors. Collimation was significant for the matched-filter method. RMSEs for matched-filter measurements were in general smaller than segmentation. To achieve RMSE on the order of 15% or less for {5, 8, 9, 10mm} nodules, the corresponding maximum allowable slice thicknesses were {3, 5, 5, 5mm} for the matched-filter and {0.8, 3, 3, 3mm} for the segmentation method. RCs showed similar patterns for both methods, increasing with slice thickness. For 8-10mm nodules, the measurements were highly repeatable provided the slice thickness was ≤3mm, regardless of method and across varying acquisition conditions. RDCs were lower for thin collimation than thick collimation protocols. While RDC of matched filter volume estimation results was always lower than segmentation results, for 8-10mm nodules with thin

  6. Atypical radiological findings in achondroplasia with uncommon mutation of the fibroblast growth factor receptor-3 (FGFR-3) gene (Gly to Cys transition at codon 375)

    SciTech Connect

    Nishimuri, Gen; Fukushima, Yoshimitsu; Ohashi, Hirofumi; Ikegawa, Shiro

    1995-11-20

    The recent discovery of mutations in the FGFR-3 (fibroblast growth factor receptor-3) gene (FGFR3) as the cause of achondroplasia has provided new insight into understanding genetic diseases. It was surprising from the viewpoint of molecular genetics that most patients with achondroplasia showed the same mutation at nucleotide 1138, leading to a single amino acid substitution from glycine to arginine at codon 380 (Gly380Arg). All 39 patients examined by two groups had the Gly380Arg; 38 patients and the other demonstrated a G to A and a G to C transition at nucleotide 1138, respectively. Subsequently another group disclosed a G to A transition at the same nucleotide 1138 in 21/23 patients of diverse ethnic origin, although mutations were not identified in two patients. To date, a total of 193 patients with the mutation of the G380Arg have been reported; a single patient with another mutation resulting in a substitution from glycine to cysteine at codon 375 (Gly375Cys) has been described. The presence of this common mutation is consistent with the clinical fact that achondroplastic individuals show less phenotypic variability than is unusual for autosomal dominant diseases. We encountered a Japanese boy with the Gly375Cys. His mother with achondroplasia has the same mutation. The molecular investigation of these patients was reported elsewhere. Here we report the clinical and radiological findings in this boy who demonstrated some atypical manifestations from those of typical achondroplasia. 8 refs., 1 fig.

  7. The prevalence of unplanned pregnancy and associated factors in Britain: findings from the third National Survey of Sexual Attitudes and Lifestyles (Natsal-3)

    PubMed Central

    Wellings, Kaye; Jones, Kyle G; Mercer, Catherine H; Tanton, Clare; Clifton, Soazig; Datta, Jessica; Copas, Andrew J; Erens, Bob; Gibson, Lorna J; Macdowall, Wendy; Sonnenberg, Pam; Phelps, Andrew; Johnson, Anne M

    2013-01-01

    Summary Background Unplanned pregnancy is a key public health indicator. We describe the prevalence of unplanned pregnancy, and associated factors, in a general population sample in Britain (England, Scotland, and Wales). Method We did a probability sample survey, the third National Survey of Sexual Attitudes and Lifestyles (Natsal-3), of 15 162 men and women aged 16–74 years in Britain, including 5686 women of child-bearing age (16–44 years) who were included in the pregnancy analysis, between Sept 6, 2010, and Aug 31, 2012. We describe the planning status of pregnancies with known outcomes in the past year, and report the annual population prevalence of unplanned pregnancy, using a validated, multicriteria, multi-outcome measure (the London Measure of Unplanned Pregnancy). We set the findings in the context of secular trends in reproductive health-related events, and patterns across the life course. Findings 9·7% of women aged 16–44 years had pregnancies with known outcome in the year before interview, of which 16·2% (95% CI 13·1–19·9) scored as unplanned, 29·0% (25·2–33·2) as ambivalent, and 54·8% (50·3–59·2) as planned, giving an annual prevalence estimate for unplanned pregnancy of 1·5% (1·2–1·9). Pregnancies in women aged 16–19 years were most commonly unplanned (45·2% [30·8–60·5]). However, most unplanned pregnancies were in women aged 20–34 years (62·4% [50·2–73·2]). Factors strongly associated with unplanned pregnancy were first sexual intercourse before 16 years of age (age-adjusted odds ratio 2·85 [95% CI 1·77–4·57], current smoking (2·47 [1·46–4·18]), recent use of drugs other than cannabis (3·41 [1·64–7·11]), and lower educational attainment. Unplanned pregnancy was also associated with lack of sexual competence at first sexual intercourse (1·90 [1·14–3·08]), reporting higher frequency of sex (2·11 [1·25–3·57] for five or more times in the past 4 weeks), receiving sex education mainly

  8. Finding food

    PubMed Central

    Forsyth, Ann; Lytle, Leslie; Riper, David Van

    2011-01-01

    A significant amount of travel is undertaken to find food. This paper examines challenges in measuring access to food using Geographic Information Systems (GIS), important in studies of both travel and eating behavior. It compares different sources of data available including fieldwork, land use and parcel data, licensing information, commercial listings, taxation data, and online street-level photographs. It proposes methods to classify different kinds of food sales places in a way that says something about their potential for delivering healthy food options. In assessing the relationship between food access and travel behavior, analysts must clearly conceptualize key variables, document measurement processes, and be clear about the strengths and weaknesses of data. PMID:21837264

  9. Radiologic Findings and Patient Factors Associated with 30-Day Mortality after Surgical Evacuation of Subdural Hematoma in Patients Less Than 65 Years Old

    PubMed Central

    Han, Myung-Hoon; Ryu, Je Il; Kim, Choong Hyun; Kim, Jae Min; Cheong, Jin Hwan; Yi, Hyeong-Joong

    2017-01-01

    Objective The purpose of this study is to evaluate the associations between 30-day mortality and various radiological and clinical factors in patients with traumatic acute subdural hematoma (SDH). During the 11-year study period, young patients who underwent surgery for SDH were followed for 30 days. Patients who died due to other medical comorbidities or other organ problems were not included in the study population. Methods From January 1, 2004 to December 31, 2014, 318 consecutive surgically-treated traumatic acute SDH patients were registered for the study. The Kaplan–Meier method was used to analyze 30-day survival rates. We also estimated the hazard ratios of various variables in order to identify the independent predictors of 30-day mortality. Results We observed a negative correlation between 30-day mortality and Glasgow coma scale score (per 1-point score increase) (hazard ratio [HR], 0.60; 95% confidence interval [CI], 0.52–0.70; p<0.001). In addition, use of antithrombotics (HR, 2.34; 95% CI, 1.27–4.33; p=0.008), history of diabetes mellitus (HR, 2.28; 95% CI, 1.20–4.32; p=0.015), and accompanying traumatic subarachnoid hemorrhage (hazard ratio, 2.13; 95% CI, 1.27–3.58; p=0.005) were positively associated with 30-day mortality. Conclusion We found significant associations between short-term mortality after surgery for traumatic acute SDH and lower Glasgow Coma Scale scores, use of antithrombotics, history of diabetes mellitus, and accompanying traumatic subarachnoid hemorrhage at admission. We expect these findings to be helpful for selecting patients for surgical treatment of traumatic acute SDH, and for making accurate prognoses. PMID:28264246

  10. Substitution of lysine for arginine at position 42 of human transforming growth factor-alpha eliminates biological activity without changing internal disulfide bonds.

    PubMed Central

    Defeo-Jones, D; Tai, J Y; Vuocolo, G A; Wegrzyn, R J; Schofield, T L; Riemen, M W; Oliff, A

    1989-01-01

    Transforming growth factor-alpha (TGF-alpha) is a growth-promoting protein that binds to the epidermal growth factor (EGF) receptor. To identify critical residues that govern TGF-alpha-EGF receptor binding, we prepared site-specific substitution mutants of TGF-alpha. Mutant proteins were tested in receptor-binding and mitogenesis assays. Semiconservative substitutions at positions 4, 12, 18, and 45 decreased biological activity 2.1- to 14-fold. The conservative substitution of lysine for arginine at position 42 completely eliminated biological activity. Amino acid composition analysis of proteolytic fragments from TGF-alpha and the Lys-42 mutant indicated that these proteins contained the same disulfide bonds. These studies suggest that arginine 42 may be a contact point for TGF-alpha-EGF receptor interaction. PMID:2506441

  11. OVERVIEW AND FINDINGS FROM THE RELIGIOUS ORDERS STUDY

    PubMed Central

    Bennett, David A.; Schneider, Julie A.; Arvanitakis, Zoe; Wilson, Robert S.

    2012-01-01

    The Religious Orders Study is a longitudinal clinical-pathologic cohort study of aging and Alzheimer’s disease (AD). In this manuscript, we summarize the study methods including the study design and describe the clinical evaluation, assessment of risk factors, collection of ante-mortem biological specimens, brain autopsy and collection of selected post-mortem data. The results: 1) review the relation of neuropathologic indices to clinical diagnoses and cognition proximate to death; 2) examine the relation of risk factors to clinical outcomes; 3) examine the relation of risk factors to measures of neuropathology; and 4) summarize additional study findings. We then discuss and contextualize the study findings. PMID:22471860

  12. Metadiscourse Markers in Biological Research Articles and Journal Impact Factor: Non-Native Writers vs. Native Writers

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Gholami, Javad; Ilghami, Roghayeh

    2016-01-01

    Metadiscourse markers (MDMs) are lexical resources that writers employ to organize their discourse and state their stance towards the content or the reader. This study investigated the frequency with which interactive and interactional MDMs were employed in biological research articles (RAs). It also explored the possible relationship between the…

  13. Success Factors in Curriculum Innovation: The Case of Mathematics, Physics, Chemistry and Biology in Secondary Education in the Netherlands.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Vermeulen, Ard; And Others

    This paper reports on a theoretical and empirical study into curriculum innovation in secondary education in the Netherlands focusing on mathematics, physics, chemistry, and biology. Curriculum specialists, subject specialists, researchers, policy makers, and teachers were interviewed for the study. Results indicate that mathematics had the most…

  14. Psychometric properties of the UCLA PTSD reaction index. part II: investigating factor structure findings in a national clinic-referred youth sample.

    PubMed

    Elhai, Jon D; Layne, Christopher M; Steinberg, Alan M; Brymer, Melissa J; Briggs, Ernestine C; Ostrowski, Sarah A; Pynoos, Robert S

    2013-02-01

    We examined the underlying factor structure of the UCLA PTSD Reaction Index (PTSD-RI) using data from 6,591 children/adolescents exposed to trauma, presenting for treatment at any of 54 National Child Traumatic Stress Network (NCTSN) centers. Using confirmatory factor analysis, we tested the 3-factor DSM-IV PTSD model, 2 separate 4-factor models (Dysphoria vs. Emotional Numbing) and a recently conceptualized 5-factor Dysphoric Arousal model. We found a slight, but significant advantage for the Dysphoria model over the Emotional Numbing model on the PTSD-RI, with a difference in Bayesian information criterion (BIC) values of 81 points. As with several recent studies of adult trauma victims, we found a slight advantage for the Dysphoric Arousal model over the other models on the PTSD-RI, with BIC differences exceeding 300 points. Retaining the Dysphoric Arousal model, we tested the convergent validity of the PTSD-RI factors against subscales of the Trauma Symptom Checklist for Children. Supporting the convergent validity of the PTSD-RI, in the Dysphoric Arousal model, the dysphoric arousal factor related most strongly to anger, whereas the emotional numbing factor related most strongly to depression, and anxious arousal factor related most strongly to anxiety. Results support the use of the PTSD-RI for evaluating PTSD among youth.

  15. Systems interface biology

    PubMed Central

    Doyle, Francis J; Stelling, Jörg

    2006-01-01

    The field of systems biology has attracted the attention of biologists, engineers, mathematicians, physicists, chemists and others in an endeavour to create systems-level understanding of complex biological networks. In particular, systems engineering methods are finding unique opportunities in characterizing the rich behaviour exhibited by biological systems. In the same manner, these new classes of biological problems are motivating novel developments in theoretical systems approaches. Hence, the interface between systems and biology is of mutual benefit to both disciplines. PMID:16971329

  16. Systems interface biology.

    PubMed

    Doyle, Francis J; Stelling, Jörg

    2006-10-22

    The field of systems biology has attracted the attention of biologists, engineers, mathematicians, physicists, chemists and others in an endeavour to create systems-level understanding of complex biological networks. In particular, systems engineering methods are finding unique opportunities in characterizing the rich behaviour exhibited by biological systems. In the same manner, these new classes of biological problems are motivating novel developments in theoretical systems approaches. Hence, the interface between systems and biology is of mutual benefit to both disciplines.

  17. An analysis of factors influencing the teaching of evolution and creation by Arizona high school biology teachers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Jorstad, Susan

    2002-09-01

    This study examined the amount of emphasis given by Arizona high school biology teachers to the topics of evolutionary theory and special creation, as explanations for the origin and diversity of life on earth. A questionnaire was mailed to all Arizona public high school biology teachers in March of 2000, to gather data on teachers' classroom practices and attitudes towards evolution and creation, information on teachers' educational and professional backgrounds, their religious preferences, and any perceptions of pressure regarding the teaching of evolution or creation from outside sources. Sixty-five percent (final n = 419) of the questionnaires were returned. Analysis confirmed that, while a strong majority (96%) of Arizona teachers gave some coverage to evolutionary theory, a significant proportion (33%) reported fewer than three class periods per semester in which evolution was a major topic; 10% left it out entirely. Fourteen percent of the teachers reported that they gave moderate-to-strong emphasis to religious explanations of the origins and diversity of life. It was unclear whether this was presented as an alternative scientific theory, or as religion or philosophy. Between ten and thirty percent also rejected the scientific validity of evolutionary theory, rejected the evolution of humans from ape-like ancestors, thought that religious explanations should be taught as part of high school biology classes, or agreed that creationism has a valid scientific foundation. The amount of emphasis given evolution by a teacher correlated positively with teaching experience, number of college classes in evolutionary biology taken by the teacher, the amount of in-service training a teacher had had on teaching evolutionary theory, and age. It correlated negatively with membership in Conservative Christian religious denominations and with degree of religious fervor. Interestingly, the possession of a degree in biological sciences (e.g., versus a degree in education

  18. Cloning of anti-lPS factor cDNA from Tachypleus tridentatus, expression in Bombyx mori larvae and its biological activity in vitro.

    PubMed

    Wang, Dong-Ning; Liu, Jie-Wu; Yang, Guan-Zhen; Zhang, Wei-Jie; Wu, Xiang-Fu

    2002-05-01

    In this article we report the cloning and expression of a cDNA encoding Tachypleus anti-lipopolysaccharide (LPS) factor, which is of interest for use as a potential inhibitor of the common core subunit of Gram-negative bacterial endotoxins. First, two degenerate primers were designed based on the sequence homology of anti-LPS factors purified from different species of horseshoe crab. The total RNA was extracted from amebocytes of Tachypleus tridentatus. The cDNA was then obtained by using the RT-PCR methods. Second, the cDNA of Tachypleus anti-LPS factor (TALF) was expressed in Bombyx mori larvae using baculovirus expression system, which showed a yield of up to 600 mg/L. Last, we determined the biological activity of the recombinant proteins by LPS neutralization assay and bacteriostatic assay in vitro.

  19. Is chondroitin sulfate responsible for the biological effects attributed to the GC protein-derived Macrophage Activating Factor (GcMAF)?

    PubMed

    Ruggiero, Marco; Reinwald, Heinz; Pacini, Stefania

    2016-09-01

    We hypothesize that a plasma glycosaminoglycan, chondroitin sulfate, may be responsible for the biological and clinical effects attributed to the Gc protein-derived Macrophage Activating Factor (GcMAF), a protein that is extracted from human blood. Thus, Gc protein binds chondroitin sulfate on the cell surface and such an interaction may occur also in blood, colostrum and milk. This interpretation would solve the inconsistencies encountered in explaining the effects of GcMAF in vitro and in vivo. According to our model, the Gc protein or the GcMAF bind to chondroitin sulfate both on the cell surface and in bodily fluids, and the resulting multimolecular complexes, under the form of oligomers trigger a transmembrane signal or, alternatively, are internalized and convey the signal directly to the nucleus thus eliciting the diverse biological effects observed for both GcMAF and chondroitin sulfate.

  20. A biological question and a balanced (orthogonal) design: the ingredients to efficiently analyze two-color microarrays with Confirmatory Factor Analysis

    PubMed Central

    Crijns, Anne PG; Gerbens, Frans; Plantinga, A Edo D; Meersma, Gert Jan; de Jong, Steven; Hofstra, Robert MW; de Vries, Elisabeth GE; van der Zee, Ate GJ; de Bock, Geertruida H; te Meerman, Gerard J

    2006-01-01

    Background Factor analysis (FA) has been widely applied in microarray studies as a data-reduction-tool without any a-priori assumption regarding associations between observed data and latent structure (Exploratory Factor Analysis). A disadvantage is that the representation of data in a reduced set of dimensions can be difficult to interpret, as biological contrasts do not necessarily coincide with single dimensions. However, FA can also be applied as an instrument to confirm what is expected on the basis of pre-established hypotheses (Confirmatory Factor Analysis, CFA). We show that with a hypothesis incorporated in a balanced (orthogonal) design, including 'SelfSelf' hybridizations, dye swaps and independent replications, FA can be used to identify the latent factors underlying the correlation structure among the observed two-color microarray data. An orthogonal design will reflect the principal components associated with each experimental factor. We applied CFA to a microarray study performed to investigate cisplatin resistance in four ovarian cancer cell lines, which only differ in their degree of cisplatin resistance. Results Two latent factors, coinciding with principal components, representing the differences in cisplatin resistance between the four ovarian cancer cell lines were easily identified. From these two factors 315 genes associated with cisplatin resistance were selected, 199 genes from the first factor (False Discovery Rate (FDR): 19%) and 152 (FDR: 24%) from the second factor, while both gene sets shared 36. The differential expression of 16 genes was validated with reverse transcription-polymerase chain reaction. Conclusion Our results show that FA is an efficient method to analyze two-color microarray data provided that there is a pre-defined hypothesis reflected in an orthogonal design. PMID:16968534

  1. The Contributions of Unhealthy Lifestyle Factors to Apparent Resistant Hypertension: Findings from the REasons for Geographic And Racial Differences in Stroke (REGARDS) Study

    PubMed Central

    Shimbo, Daichi; Levitan, Emily B.; Booth, John N.; Calhoun, David A.; Judd, Suzanne E.; Lackland, Daniel T.; Safford, Monika M.; Oparil, Suzanne; Muntner, Paul

    2013-01-01

    Objectives Unhealthy lifestyle factors may contribute to apparent treatment resistant hypertension (aTRH). We examined associations of unhealthy lifestyle factors with aTRH in individuals taking antihypertensive medications from three or more classes. Methods Participants (n=2,602) taking three or more antihypertensive medication classes were identified from the population-based REasons for Geographic And Racial Differences in Stroke (REGARDS) study. aTRH was defined as having systolic/diastolic blood pressure ≥140/90 mmHg despite the use of three or more antihypertensive medication classes or the use of four or more classes to achieve blood pressure control. Lifestyle factors included obesity, physical inactivity, current smoking, heavy alcohol consumption, a low DASH diet score and high sodium-to-potassium (Na/K) intake. Results Among participants taking three or more antihypertensive medication classes, 1,293 (49.7%) participants had aTRH. The prevalence of unhealthy lifestyle factors in participants with and without aTRH was 55.2% and 51.7% respectively for obesity, 42.2% and 40.5% for physical inactivity, 11.3% and 11.5% for current smoking, 3.1% and 4.0% for heavy alcohol consumption, 23.1% and 21.5% for low DASH diet score, and 25.4% and 24.4% for high Na/K intake. After adjustment for age, sex, race, and geographic region of residence, none of the unhealthy lifestyle factors was associated with aTRH. The associations between each unhealthy lifestyle factor and aTRH remained non-significant after additional adjustment for education, income, depressive symptoms, total calorie intake, and co-morbidities. Conclusions Unhealthy lifestyle factors did not have independent associations with aTRH among individuals taking three or more antihypertensive medication classes. PMID:23303356

  2. Validation and Application of the Survey of Teaching Beliefs and Practices for Undergraduates (STEP-U): Identifying Factors Associated with Valuing Important Workplace Skills among Biology Students.

    PubMed

    Marbach-Ad, Gili; Rietschel, Carly; Thompson, Katerina V

    2016-01-01

    We present a novel assessment tool for measuring biology students' values and experiences across their undergraduate degree program. Our Survey of Teaching Beliefs and Practices for Undergraduates (STEP-U) assesses the extent to which students value skills needed for the workplace (e.g., ability to work in groups) and their experiences with teaching practices purported to promote such skills (e.g., group work). The survey was validated through factor analyses in a large sample of biology seniors (n = 1389) and through response process analyses (five interviewees). The STEP-U skills items were characterized by two underlying factors: retention (e.g., memorization) and transfer (e.g., knowledge application). Multiple linear regression models were used to examine relationships between classroom experiences, values, and student characteristics (e.g., gender, cumulative grade point average [GPA], and research experience). Student demographic and experiential factors predicted the extent to which students valued particular skills. Students with lower GPAs valued retention skills more than those with higher GPAs. Students with research experience placed greater value on scientific writing and interdisciplinary understanding. Greater experience with specific teaching practices was associated with valuing the corresponding skills more highly. The STEP-U can provide feedback vital for designing curricula that better prepare students for their intended postgraduate careers.

  3. Genome-Wide Mapping of Binding Sites Reveals Multiple Biological Functions of the Transcription Factor Cst6p in Saccharomyces cerevisiae

    PubMed Central

    Bergenholm, David

    2016-01-01

    ABSTRACT In the model eukaryote Saccharomyces cerevisiae, the transcription factor Cst6p has been reported to play important roles in several biological processes. However, the genome-wide targets of Cst6p and its physiological functions remain unknown. Here, we mapped the genome-wide binding sites of Cst6p at high resolution. Cst6p binds to the promoter regions of 59 genes with various biological functions when cells are grown on ethanol but hardly binds to the promoter at any gene when cells are grown on glucose. The retarded growth of the CST6 deletion mutant on ethanol is attributed to the markedly decreased expression of NCE103, encoding a carbonic anhydrase, which is a direct target of Cst6p. The target genes of Cst6p have a large overlap with those of stress-responsive transcription factors, such as Sko1p and Skn7p. In addition, a CST6 deletion mutant growing on ethanol shows hypersensitivity to oxidative stress and ethanol stress, assigning Cst6p as a new member of the stress-responsive transcriptional regulatory network. These results show that mapping of genome-wide binding sites can provide new insights into the function of transcription factors and highlight the highly connected and condition-dependent nature of the transcriptional regulatory network in S. cerevisiae. PMID:27143390

  4. Validation and Application of the Survey of Teaching Beliefs and Practices for Undergraduates (STEP-U): Identifying Factors Associated with Valuing Important Workplace Skills among Biology Students

    PubMed Central

    Marbach-Ad, Gili; Rietschel, Carly; Thompson, Katerina V.

    2016-01-01

    We present a novel assessment tool for measuring biology students’ values and experiences across their undergraduate degree program. Our Survey of Teaching Beliefs and Practices for Undergraduates (STEP-U) assesses the extent to which students value skills needed for the workplace (e.g., ability to work in groups) and their experiences with teaching practices purported to promote such skills (e.g., group work). The survey was validated through factor analyses in a large sample of biology seniors (n = 1389) and through response process analyses (five interviewees). The STEP-U skills items were characterized by two underlying factors: retention (e.g., memorization) and transfer (e.g., knowledge application). Multiple linear regression models were used to examine relationships between classroom experiences, values, and student characteristics (e.g., gender, cumulative grade point average [GPA], and research experience). Student demographic and experiential factors predicted the extent to which students valued particular skills. Students with lower GPAs valued retention skills more than those with higher GPAs. Students with research experience placed greater value on scientific writing and interdisciplinary understanding. Greater experience with specific teaching practices was associated with valuing the corresponding skills more highly. The STEP-U can provide feedback vital for designing curricula that better prepare students for their intended postgraduate careers. PMID:27856547

  5. Factors influencing health care access perceptions and care-seeking behaviors of immigrant Latino sexual minority men and transgender individuals: Baseline findings from the HOLA intervention study

    PubMed Central

    Tanner, AE; Reboussin, BA; Mann, L; Ma, A; Song, E; Alonzo, J; Rhodes, SD

    2014-01-01

    Little is known about immigrant Latino sexual minorities' health seeking behaviors. This study examined factors associated with perceptions of access and actual care behaviors among this population in North Carolina. Methods A community-based participatory research partnership recruited 180 Latino sexual minority men and transgender individuals within preexisting social networks to participate in a sexual health intervention. Mixed-effects logistic regression models examined factors influencing health care access perceptions and use of services (HIV testing and routine check-ups). Results Results indicate that perceptions of access and actual care behaviors are low and affected by individual and structural factors, including: years living in NC, reported poor general health, perceptions of discrimination, micro-, meso-, and macro-level barriers, and residence in a Medically Underserved Area. Discussion To improve Latino sexual minority health, focus must be placed on multiple levels, individual characteristics (e.g., demographics), clinic factors (e.g., provider competence and clinic environment), and structural factors (e.g., discrimination). PMID:25418235

  6. Contaminants in Buildings and Occupied Spaces as Risk Factors forOccupant Symptoms in U.S. Office Buildings: Findings from the U.S. EPABASE Study

    SciTech Connect

    Mendell, M.J.; Mirer, A.; Lei-Gomez, Q.

    2007-08-01

    Nonspecific building-related symptoms among occupants of modern office buildings worldwide are common and may be associated with important reductions in work performance, but their etiology remains uncertain. Most reported research into environmental risk factors for these symptoms has focused on ventilation system-related factors, dampness, and particle removal through filtration and cleaning, with relatively few studies of other potential sources of indoor contaminants. We analyzed data collected by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) from a representative sample of 100 large U.S. office buildings--the Building Assessment and Survey Evaluation (BASE) study--using multivariate-adjusted logistic regression models with generalized estimating equations. We estimated odds ratios (ORs) and 95% confidence intervals (CIs) for associations between seven building-related symptom outcomes and a diverse set of potential indoor and outdoor sources for indoor pollutants. Although most of the investigated risk factors showed no apparent association with building-related symptoms, some interesting associations resulted. Increased prevalence of symptoms was associated with carpets older than one year (lower respiratory symptoms), non-carpeted floors (upper and lower respiratory symptoms), older furniture (eye and skin symptoms), infrequent vacuuming (upper respiratory, eye, and skin symptoms and headache), and masonry exterior walls (cough, eye symptoms, and fatigue/concentration difficulty). For the many potential risk factors assessed, almost none had been investigated previously, and many associations found here may have been by chance. Additional confirmatory research focused on risk factors initially identified here is needed, using more objective measures of health outcomes and risk factors or exposures.

  7. Transforming growth factor Beta family: insight into the role of growth factors in regulation of fracture healing biology and potential clinical applications.

    PubMed

    Poniatowski, Łukasz A; Wojdasiewicz, Piotr; Gasik, Robert; Szukiewicz, Dariusz

    2015-01-01

    The transforming growth factor beta (TGF-β) family forms a group of three isoforms, TGF-β1, TGF-β2, and TGF-β3, with their structure formed by interrelated dimeric polypeptide chains. Pleiotropic and redundant functions of the TGF-β family concern control of numerous aspects and effects of cell functions, including proliferation, differentiation, and migration, in all tissues of the human body. Amongst many cytokines and growth factors, the TGF-β family is considered a group playing one of numerous key roles in control of physiological phenomena concerning maintenance of metabolic homeostasis in the bone tissue. By breaking the continuity of bone tissue, a spread-over-time and complex bone healing process is initiated, considered a recapitulation of embryonic intracartilaginous ossification. This process is a cascade of local and systemic phenomena spread over time, involving whole cell lineages and various cytokines and growth factors. Numerous in vivo and in vitro studies in various models analysing cytokines and growth factors' involvement have shown that TGF-β has a leading role in the fracture healing process. This paper sums up current knowledge on the basis of available literature concerning the role of the TGF-β family in the fracture healing process.

  8. Transforming Growth Factor Beta Family: Insight into the Role of Growth Factors in Regulation of Fracture Healing Biology and Potential Clinical Applications

    PubMed Central

    Poniatowski, Łukasz A.; Gasik, Robert

    2015-01-01

    The transforming growth factor beta (TGF-β) family forms a group of three isoforms, TGF-β1, TGF-β2, and TGF-β3, with their structure formed by interrelated dimeric polypeptide chains. Pleiotropic and redundant functions of the TGF-β family concern control of numerous aspects and effects of cell functions, including proliferation, differentiation, and migration, in all tissues of the human body. Amongst many cytokines and growth factors, the TGF-β family is considered a group playing one of numerous key roles in control of physiological phenomena concerning maintenance of metabolic homeostasis in the bone tissue. By breaking the continuity of bone tissue, a spread-over-time and complex bone healing process is initiated, considered a recapitulation of embryonic intracartilaginous ossification. This process is a cascade of local and systemic phenomena spread over time, involving whole cell lineages and various cytokines and growth factors. Numerous in vivo and in vitro studies in various models analysing cytokines and growth factors' involvement have shown that TGF-β has a leading role in the fracture healing process. This paper sums up current knowledge on the basis of available literature concerning the role of the TGF-β family in the fracture healing process. PMID:25709154

  9. When might an operative complication be regarded as acceptable? Part 1: Surgical factors that influence courts when finding fault during litigation

    PubMed Central

    Blackburn, S; Biggs, H

    2015-01-01

    In cases where surgeons face litigation over operative misadventure, the result of a trial is uncertain. In order to identify factors in cases of surgical litigation that have influenced the final decision of the courts, we have reviewed recent reported cases, noting both surgical and evidential influences on outcome. Taken together, these reveal that among other influential factors, the acceptability of more than one reasonable operative approach, the court’s approach to inappropriate delegation and the uncertainties of expert evidence all play a role in the determination of the case. PMID:25723684

  10. Sexual assault and posttraumatic stress disorder: a review of the biological, psychological and sociological factors and treatments.

    PubMed

    Chivers-Wilson, Kaitlin A

    2006-07-01

    Sexual assault occurs with alarming frequency in Canada. The prevalence of Posttraumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) in assault survivors is drastically higher than the national prevalence of the disorder, which is a strong indication that the current therapies for sexual-assault-related PTSD are in need of improvement. Increasing knowledge and understanding of the pathologies associated with rape trauma in biological, psychological and sociological domains will help to develop more effective treatments for survivors. A dysregulation of the Hypothalamic-Pituitary-Adrenal (HPA) axis is observed in survivors of sexual assault and this may be a fundamental cause of the structural and functional abnormalities contributing to PTSD symptoms. Pharmacotherapies are available to treat PTSD; however, they are often inadequate or unwanted by the survivor. Psychological health is compromised following interpersonal trauma and many psychological therapies are available, but with varying efficacy. A person's cognitions have a dramatic effect on the onset, severity, and progress of PTSD following sexual assault. Sociological impacts of assault influence the development of PTSD through victim-blaming attitudes and the perpetuation of rape myths. Perceived positive regard and early social support is shown to be important to successful recovery. Education is vital in rape prevention and to foster a supportive environment for survivors. The biological, psychological and sociological impacts and treatments should not remain mutually exclusive. A better appreciation of the biopsychosocial repercussions of sexual assault will aid in developing a more holistic and individualized therapy to help alleviate the physical and emotional pain following the trauma of rape.

  11. Altered growth factor sensitivity in EL2 rat fibroblasts: influence of this biological characteristic on cell growth.

    PubMed

    Di Francesco, P; Testa, E P; Testa, U; Liboi, E

    1989-06-01

    Extensive evidence indicate that platelet-derived growth factor (PDGF) and epidermal growth factor (EGF) play a key role in the stimulation of the 3T3 fibroblast replication: in this connection, PDGF and EGF act as a competence and a progression factor, respectively. We have previously demonstrated that EGF alone leads density-arrested EL2 rat fibroblasts to synthesize DNA and proliferate in serum-free cultures. Here, we have analyzed the role of EGF in the control of EL2 cell proliferation. Our data show a dose-related effect of EGF on DNA synthesis and cell growth, with maximal stimulation for both parameters at 20 ng/ml. On the other hand, autocrine production of PDGF or PDGF-like substances by EL2 cells is seemingly excluded by experiments with anti-PDGF serum or medium conditioned by EL2 fibroblasts. EGF binding studies show that EL2 cells possess high affinity EGF receptors, at a density level 3 to 4-fold higher than other fibroblastic lines. In addition, EL2 cells show a normal down-regulation of EGF receptors, following exposure to EGF, but PDGF, fibroblast growth factor (FGF), transforming growth factor beta (TGF beta) and bombesin have not decreased the affinity of EGF receptor for its ligand. Moreover, in EL2 cells, the EGF is able to induce the synthesis of putative intracellular regulatory proteins that govern the PDGF-induced competence in 3T3 cells. Our data indicate that EGF in EL2 cells may act as both a competence and a progression factor, via induction of the mechanisms, regulated in other cell lines by cooperation between different growth factors.(ABSTRACT TRUNCATED AT 250 WORDS)

  12. Factors from the Structure of Intellect Model Associated with Gifted Adolescents' Problem Finding in Science: Research with Westinghouse Science Talent Search Winners.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Subotnik, Rena F.

    1988-01-01

    A study of 147 Westinghouse Science Talent Search winners classified 57 subjects as independent problem finders. They were asked to select five of the 31 factors in Guilford's Structure of Intellect model which best described the process of choosing their research question. Implications for educating secondary science students are discussed. (VW)

  13. Changes and socioeconomic factors associated with attitudes towards domestic violence among Vietnamese women aged 15-49: findings from the Multiple Indicator Cluster Surveys, 2006-2011.

    PubMed

    Trinh, Oanh Thi Hoang; Oh, Juhwan; Choi, Sugy; To, Kien Gia; Do, Dung Van

    2016-01-01

    Background Understanding factors associated with domestic violence-supportive attitudes among Vietnamese women is important for designing effective policies to prevent this behavior. Previous studies have largely overlooked risk factors associated with domestic violence-supportive attitudes by women in Vietnam. Objective This paper explores and identifies socioeconomic factors that contribute to domestic violence-supportive attitudes among Vietnamese women using data from the Multiple Indicator Cluster Surveys (MICS). Design Secondary data from two cross-sectional studies (MICS 3, 2006, and MICS 4, 2011) with representative samples (9,471 and 11,663 women, respectively) in Vietnam were analyzed. The prevalence of supportive attitudes toward domestic violence and associations with age, residence region, area, education level, household wealth index, ethnicity, and marital status were estimated using descriptive statistics and multivariate Poisson models, giving estimates of relative risk. Results Overall, the prevalence of acceptance of domestic violence declined between 2006 and 2011 in Vietnam (65.1% vs. 36.1%). Socioeconomic factors associated with women's condoning of domestic violence were age, wealth, education level, and living area. In particular, younger age and low educational attainment were key factors associated with violence-supportive attitudes, and these associations have become stronger over time. Conclusion Higher educational attainment in women is an important predictor of women's attitudes toward domestic violence. To date, Doi Moi and the Vietnamese government's commitment to the Millennium Development Goals may have positively contributed to lowering the acceptance of domestic violence. Tailored interventions that focus on education will be important in further changing attitudes toward domestic violence.

  14. Suicidal ideation among Métis adult men and women – associated risk and protective factors: findings from a nationally representative survey

    PubMed Central

    Kumar, Mohan B.; Walls, Melissa; Janz, Teresa; Hutchinson, Peter; Turner, Tara; Graham, Catherine

    2012-01-01

    Objective To determine the prevalence of suicidal ideation among Métis men and women (20–59 years) and identify its associated risk and protective factors using data from the nationally representative Aboriginal Peoples Survey (2006). Study design Secondary analysis of previously collected data from a nationally representative cross-sectional survey. Results Across Canada, lifetime suicidal ideation was reported by an estimated 13.3% (or an estimated 34,517 individuals) of the total population of 20-to-59-year-old Métis. Of those who ideated, 46.2% reported a lifetime suicide attempt and 6.0% indicated that they had attempted suicide in the previous 12 months. Prevalence of suicidal ideation was higher among Métis men than in men who did not report Aboriginal identity in examined jurisdictions. Métis women were more likely to report suicidal ideation compared with Métis men (14.9% vs. 11.5%, respectively). Métis women and men had some common associated risk and protective factors such as major depressive episode, history of self-injury, perceived Aboriginal-specific community issues, divorced status, high mobility, self-rated thriving health, high self-esteem and positive coping ability. However, in Métis women alone, heavy frequent drinking, history of foster care experience and lower levels of social support were significant associated risk factors of suicidal ideation. Furthermore, a significant interaction was observed between social support and major depressive episode. Among Métis men, history of ever smoking was the sole unique associated risk factor. Conclusion The higher prevalence of suicidal ideation among Métis women compared with Métis men and the observed gender differences in associations with some associated risk and protective factors suggest the need for gender-responsive programming to address suicidal ideation. PMID:22901287

  15. Changes and socioeconomic factors associated with attitudes towards domestic violence among Vietnamese women aged 15–49: findings from the Multiple Indicator Cluster Surveys, 2006–2011

    PubMed Central

    Trinh, Oanh Thi Hoang; Oh, Juhwan; Choi, Sugy; To, Kien Gia; Van Do, Dung

    2016-01-01

    Background Understanding factors associated with domestic violence-supportive attitudes among Vietnamese women is important for designing effective policies to prevent this behavior. Previous studies have largely overlooked risk factors associated with domestic violence-supportive attitudes by women in Vietnam. Objective This paper explores and identifies socioeconomic factors that contribute to domestic violence–supportive attitudes among Vietnamese women using data from the Multiple Indicator Cluster Surveys (MICS). Design Secondary data from two cross-sectional studies (MICS 3, 2006, and MICS 4, 2011) with representative samples (9,471 and 11,663 women, respectively) in Vietnam were analyzed. The prevalence of supportive attitudes toward domestic violence and associations with age, residence region, area, education level, household wealth index, ethnicity, and marital status were estimated using descriptive statistics and multivariate Poisson models, giving estimates of relative risk. Results Overall, the prevalence of acceptance of domestic violence declined between 2006 and 2011 in Vietnam (65.1% vs. 36.1%). Socioeconomic factors associated with women's condoning of domestic violence were age, wealth, education level, and living area. In particular, younger age and low educational attainment were key factors associated with violence-supportive attitudes, and these associations have become stronger over time. Conclusion Higher educational attainment in women is an important predictor of women's attitudes toward domestic violence. To date, Doi Moi and the Vietnamese government's commitment to the Millennium Development Goals may have positively contributed to lowering the acceptance of domestic violence. Tailored interventions that focus on education will be important in further changing attitudes toward domestic violence. PMID:26950567

  16. Biologic enhancement of cartilage repair: the role of platelet-rich plasma and other commercially available growth factors.

    PubMed

    Cugat, Ramon; Cuscó, Xavier; Seijas, Roberto; Álvarez, Pedro; Steinbacher, Gilbert; Ares, Oscar; Wang-Saegusa, Ana; García-Balletbó, Montserrat

    2015-04-01

    In part, people's quality of life depends on the "health" of their cartilage because its damage or deterioration causes pain that limits mobility and reduces autonomy. Predisposing genetic factors and modern-life environmental factors, such as diet, excessive physical exercise, or the absence of any physical exercise, in addition to injuries that can occur, all contribute to the onset and development of chronic degenerative diseases such as osteoarthritis. Regenerative medicine focuses on the repair, replacement, or regeneration of cells, tissues, or organs to restore impaired function from any cause, including congenital defects, disease, and trauma.

  17. The impact of plasma rich in growth factors on clinical and biological factors involved in healing processes after third molar extraction.

    PubMed

    Mozzati, Marco; Martinasso, Germana; Pol, Renato; Polastri, Carolina; Cristiano, Antonio; Muzio, Giuliana; Canuto, Rosa

    2010-12-01

    Extraction of an impacted mandibular third molar is a common surgical procedure, although it still leads to several postoperative symptoms and complications. The study assessed the efficacy of autologous plasma rich in growth factors (PRGF) in the healing process by checking the difference of tissue cytokines and other healing factors produced by the mucosa after extraction between sites treated with PRGF and control sites and, at the same time, by evaluating the clinical efficacy of PRGF in terms of reduced pain and facial swelling. This study was a split-mouth study, in which the patient becomes his/her own control, to eliminate any individual response differences toward PRGF treatment. The parameters regarding inflammation and subsequent wound healing were all significantly higher at PRGF sites than at control sites. The increase at PRGF sites of the two proinflammatory cytokines evaluated, interleukin (IL)-1β and IL-6, was accompanied by the increase of two anti-inflammatory cytokines, IL-10 and transforming growth factor-β. Furthermore, IL-1β and IL-6 induce fibroblast and keratinocyte proliferation, important events in wound healing. Postoperative pain and the swelling, measured at all experimental times, were reduced in the presence of PRGF.

  18. A survey of DNA motif finding algorithms

    PubMed Central

    Das, Modan K; Dai, Ho-Kwok

    2007-01-01

    Background Unraveling the mechanisms that regulate gene expression is a major challenge in biology. An important task in this challenge is to identify regulatory elements, especially the binding sites in deoxyribonucleic acid (DNA) for transcription factors. These binding sites are short DNA segments that are called motifs. Recent advances in genome sequence availability and in high-throughput gene expression analysis technologies have allowed for the development of computational methods for motif finding. As a result, a large number of motif finding algorithms have been implemented and applied to various motif models over the past decade. This survey reviews the latest developments in DNA motif finding algorithms. Results Earlier algorithms use promoter sequences of coregulated genes from single genome and search for statistically overrepresented motifs. Recent algorithms are designed to use phylogenetic footprinting or orthologous sequences and also an integrated approach where promoter sequences of coregulated genes and phylogenetic footprinting are used. All the algorithms studied have been reported to correctly detect the motifs that have been previously detected by laboratory experimental approaches, and some algorithms were able to find novel motifs. However, most of these motif finding algorithms have been shown to work successfully in yeast and other lower organisms, but perform significantly worse in higher organisms. Conclusion Despite considerable efforts to date, DNA motif finding remains a complex challenge for biologists and computer scientists. Researchers have taken many different approaches in developing motif discovery tools and the progress made in this area of research is very encouraging. Performance comparison of different motif finding tools and identification of the best tools have proven to be a difficult task because tools are designed based on algorithms and motif models that are diverse and complex and our incomplete understanding of

  19. Cataloguing of Potential HIV Susceptibility Factors during the Menstrual Cycle of Pig-Tailed Macaques by Using a Systems Biology Approach

    PubMed Central

    Burgener, A.; Bosinger, S. E.; Tharp, G. K.; Guenthner, P. C.; Patel, N. B.; Birse, K.; Hanson, D. L.; Westmacott, G. R.; Henning, T. R.; Radzio, J.; Garcia-Lerma, J. G.; Ball, T. B.; McNicholl, J. M.; Kersh, E. N.

    2015-01-01

    ABSTRACT Our earlier studies with pig-tailed macaques demonstrated various simian-human immunodeficiency virus (SHIV) susceptibilities during the menstrual cycle, likely caused by cyclic variations in immune responses in the female genital tract. There is concern that high-dose, long-lasting, injectable progestin-based contraception could mimic the high-progesterone luteal phase and predispose women to human immunodeficiency type 1 (HIV-1) acquisition and transmission. In this study, we adopted a systems biology approach employing proteomics (tandem mass spectrometry), transcriptomics (RNA microarray hybridization), and other specific protein assays (enzyme-linked immunosorbent assays and multiplex chemokine and cytokine measurements) to characterize the effects of hormonal changes on the expression of innate factors and secreted proteins in the macaque vagina. Several antiviral factors and pathways (including acute-phase response signaling and complement system) were overexpressed in the follicular phase. Conversely, during the luteal phase there were factors overexpressed (including moesins, syndecans, and integrins, among others) that could play direct or indirect roles in enhancing HIV-1 infection. Thus, our study showed that specific pathways and proteins or genes might work in tandem to regulate innate immunity, thus fostering further investigation and future design of approaches to help counter HIV-1 acquisition in the female genital tract. IMPORTANCE HIV infection in women is poorly understood. High levels of the hormone progesterone may make women more vulnerable to infection. This could be the case during the menstrual cycle, when using hormone-based birth control, or during pregnancy. The biological basis for increased HIV vulnerability is not known. We used an animal model with high risk for infection during periods of high progesterone. Genital secretions and tissues during the menstrual cycle were studied. Our goal was to identify biological factors

  20. Screening of Fungi for Biological Control of a Triatomine Vector of Chagas Disease: Temperature and Trypanosome Infection as Factors

    PubMed Central

    Garcia, Aline R. M.; Rocha, Adriana de Paula; Moreira, Camila C.; Rocha, Silma L.; Guarneri, Alessandra A.; Elliot, Simon L.

    2016-01-01

    Entomopathogenic fungi have been investigated as an alternative tool for controlling various insects, including triatomine vectors of the protozoan Trypanosoma cruzi, the etiological agent of Chagas disease. Here we tested the pathogenicity and virulence of ten isolates of the fungi Metarhizium spp. and Beauveria bassiana against Rhodnius prolixus and found all of the isolates to be virulent. We used two isolates (URPE-11 Metarhizium anisopliae and ENT-1 Beauveria bassiana) for further screening based on their prolific sporulation in vitro (an important property of fungal biopesticides). We characterized their virulences in a dose-response experiment and then examined virulence across a range of temperatures (21, 23, 27 and 30°C). We found isolate ENT-1 to maintain higher levels of virulence over these temperatures than URPE-11. We therefore used B. bassiana ENT-1 in the final experiment in which we examined the survival of insects parasitized with T. cruzi and then infected with this fungus (once again over a range of temperatures). Contrary to our expectations, the survival of insects challenged with the pathogenic fungus was greater when they had previously been infected with the parasite T. cruzi than when they had not (independent of temperature). We discuss these results in terms of aspects of the biologies of the three organisms. In practical terms, we concluded that, while we have fungal isolates of potential interest for development as biopesticides against R. prolixus, we have identified what could be a critical problem for this biological tool: the parasite T. cruzi appears to confer a measure of resistance to the insect against the potential biopesticide agent so use of this fungus as a biopesticide could lead to selection for vector competence. PMID:27855217

  1. Screening of Fungi for Biological Control of a Triatomine Vector of Chagas Disease: Temperature and Trypanosome Infection as Factors.

    PubMed

    Garcia, Aline R M; Rocha, Adriana de Paula; Moreira, Camila C; Rocha, Silma L; Guarneri, Alessandra A; Elliot, Simon L

    2016-11-01

    Entomopathogenic fungi have been investigated as an alternative tool for controlling various insects, including triatomine vectors of the protozoan Trypanosoma cruzi, the etiological agent of Chagas disease. Here we tested the pathogenicity and virulence of ten isolates of the fungi Metarhizium spp. and Beauveria bassiana against Rhodnius prolixus and found all of the isolates to be virulent. We used two isolates (URPE-11 Metarhizium anisopliae and ENT-1 Beauveria bassiana) for further screening based on their prolific sporulation in vitro (an important property of fungal biopesticides). We characterized their virulences in a dose-response experiment and then examined virulence across a range of temperatures (21, 23, 27 and 30°C). We found isolate ENT-1 to maintain higher levels of virulence over these temperatures than URPE-11. We therefore used B. bassiana ENT-1 in the final experiment in which we examined the survival of insects parasitized with T. cruzi and then infected with this fungus (once again over a range of temperatures). Contrary to our expectations, the survival of insects challenged with the pathogenic fungus was greater when they had previously been infected with the parasite T. cruzi than when they had not (independent of temperature). We discuss these results in terms of aspects of the biologies of the three organisms. In practical terms, we concluded that, while we have fungal isolates of potential interest for development as biopesticides against R. prolixus, we have identified what could be a critical problem for this biological tool: the parasite T. cruzi appears to confer a measure of resistance to the insect against the potential biopesticide agent so use of this fungus as a biopesticide could lead to selection for vector competence.

  2. The foundations of space biology and medicine. Volume 2: Ecological and physiological bases of space biology and medicine. Part 3: Effect on the organism of dynamic flight factors. Chapter 1: Principles of gravitational biology

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Smith, A. H.

    1972-01-01

    The physical principles of gravitation are discussed, such as gravitational and intertial forces, weight and mass, weightlessness, size and scale effects, scale limits of gravitational effects, and gravity as a biogenic factor. The behavior of the accelerative force gravitation, is described. This law proposes and quantifies the mutual gravitational attraction existing between all bodies of matter, the force being proportional to the product of masses, and inversely related to the square of the distance separating them. Gravity orientation, chronic acceleration, and hematology are examined. Systematic responses, such as circulation and renal functions, are also considered, along with animal response to a decreased acceleration field and physiology of hyper- and hypodynamic fields.

  3. The Role of Biological and Social Factors in the Cause of Mental Retardation Associated with Parental Alcoholism.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Moskovkina, A. G.; Sagdullaev, A. A.

    1990-01-01

    Discusses research into parental alcoholism as the cause of fetal alcohol syndrome (FAS). Reports that a study examined the family history of children in 18 schools in the Soviet Union. Concludes that intellectual deficiencies can be traced to various genetic and environmental factors. Calls for early intervention to prevent intellectual…

  4. Evaluation of biogeographical factors in the native range to improve the success of biological control agents in the introduced range

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Biogeographical factors associated with Arundo donax in its native range were evaluated in reference to its key herbivore, an armored scale, Rhizaspidiotus donacis. Climate modeling from location data in Spain and France accurately predicted the native range of the scale in the warmer, drier parts o...

  5. Gender-Specific Associations between Socioeconomic Status and Psychological Factors and Metabolic Syndrome in the Korean Population: Findings from the 2013 Korean National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey

    PubMed Central

    Cho, Kyoung Im; Je, Hyung Gon; Jang, Jae Sik; Park, Yong Hyun

    2016-01-01

    We aimed to assess the gender-specific associations between psychological factors and socioeconomic status (SES) and metabolic syndrome (MetS) in Korean adults. We examined 4,689 Korean adults aged 20–79 years who participated in the 2013 Korean National Health Examination and Nutrition Survey. With regard to SES, occupation status (none, manual, and nonmanual), marital status (single, married, divorced, and widowed), and psychological factors (detection of stress, depressive symptoms, and suicidal thoughts) were determined via questionnaires. Compared with married men, single and divorced men exhibited ORs (95% confidence interval [CIs]) for MetS of 0.45 (0.31–0.65) and 1.61 (1.02–2.55), respectively, after adjusting for covariates. However, this association was not significant in women. Compared with those in the lowest household income group and least educated group in women, the ORs for MetS in the highest income group and the most educated group were 0.63 (CI 0.46–0.86) and 0.46 (CI 0.32–0.67), respectively. Suicidal thoughts in men (OR 1.64, CI 1.03–2.61) and perceived stress in women (OR 1.26, CI 1.01–1.59) were associated with MetS. In this study, MetS has gender-specific associations with lower SES and psychological factors. Thus, gender-specific public health interventions based on SES and psychological factors are needed to prevent and treat MetS and reduce additional cardiovascular disease risk. PMID:28050556

  6. What factors are associated with recent intimate partner violence? findings from the WHO multi-country study on women's health and domestic violence

    PubMed Central

    2011-01-01

    Background Intimate partner violence (IPV) against women is a global public health and human rights concern. Despite a growing body of research into risk factors for IPV, methodological differences limit the extent to which comparisons can be made between studies. We used data from ten countries included in the WHO Multi-country Study on Women's Health and Domestic Violence to identify factors that are consistently associated with abuse across sites, in order to inform the design of IPV prevention programs. Methods Standardised population-based household surveys were done between 2000 and 2003. One woman aged 15-49 years was randomly selected from each sampled household. Those who had ever had a male partner were asked about their experiences of physically and sexually violent acts. We performed multivariate logistic regression to identify predictors of physical and/or sexual partner violence within the past 12 months. Results Despite wide variations in the prevalence of IPV, many factors affected IPV risk similarly across sites. Secondary education, high SES, and formal marriage offered protection, while alcohol abuse, cohabitation, young age, attitudes supportive of wife beating, having outside sexual partners, experiencing childhood abuse, growing up with domestic violence, and experiencing or perpetrating other forms of violence in adulthood, increased the risk of IPV. The strength of the association was greatest when both the woman and her partner had the risk factor. Conclusions IPV prevention programs should increase focus on transforming gender norms and attitudes, addressing childhood abuse, and reducing harmful drinking. Development initiatives to improve access to education for girls and boys may also have an important role in violence prevention. PMID:21324186

  7. Gender-Specific Associations between Socioeconomic Status and Psychological Factors and Metabolic Syndrome in the Korean Population: Findings from the 2013 Korean National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey.

    PubMed

    Cho, Kyoung Im; Kim, Bo Hyun; Je, Hyung Gon; Jang, Jae Sik; Park, Yong Hyun

    2016-01-01

    We aimed to assess the gender-specific associations between psychological factors and socioeconomic status (SES) and metabolic syndrome (MetS) in Korean adults. We examined 4,689 Korean adults aged 20-79 years who participated in the 2013 Korean National Health Examination and Nutrition Survey. With regard to SES, occupation status (none, manual, and nonmanual), marital status (single, married, divorced, and widowed), and psychological factors (detection of stress, depressive symptoms, and suicidal thoughts) were determined via questionnaires. Compared with married men, single and divorced men exhibited ORs (95% confidence interval [CIs]) for MetS of 0.45 (0.31-0.65) and 1.61 (1.02-2.55), respectively, after adjusting for covariates. However, this association was not significant in women. Compared with those in the lowest household income group and least educated group in women, the ORs for MetS in the highest income group and the most educated group were 0.63 (CI 0.46-0.86) and 0.46 (CI 0.32-0.67), respectively. Suicidal thoughts in men (OR 1.64, CI 1.03-2.61) and perceived stress in women (OR 1.26, CI 1.01-1.59) were associated with MetS. In this study, MetS has gender-specific associations with lower SES and psychological factors. Thus, gender-specific public health interventions based on SES and psychological factors are needed to prevent and treat MetS and reduce additional cardiovascular disease risk.

  8. Vitamin D as a Resilience Factor, Helpful for Survival of Potentially Fatal Conditions: A Hypothesis Emerging from Recent Findings of the ESTHER Cohort Study and the CHANCES Consortium

    PubMed Central

    Schöttker, Ben; Brenner, Hermann

    2015-01-01

    There is debate on whether vitamin D deficiency is a risk factor for major chronic diseases and premature death or whether observed associations were just confounded by general health status. Here, we review recent results from the Epidemiologische Studie zu Chancen der Verhütung, Früherkennung und optimierten Therapie chronischer Erkrankungen in der älteren Bevölkerung (ESTHER) cohort study and the Consortium on Heatlh and Ageing: Network of Cohorts from Europe and the United States (CHANCES) that suggest that vitamin D deficiency may not be a risk factor for the development of cardiovascular diseases and cancer but may be a risk factor for fatal instances of these diseases. Furthermore, analyses comprehensively adjusted for the health status showed that the association of vitamin D and mortality was very likely not confounded by general health status. These results suggest that vitamin D could be a marker of resilience to fatality of potentially fatal diseases. Sufficient vitamin D serum concentrations may be needed to regulate the response of the immune system when it is challenged by severe diseases to prevent a fatal course of the disease. If this hypothesis can be verified through basic research studies and adequately designed randomized controlled trials, it could have important public health implications because vitamin D deficiency is very common worldwide, and interventions could be implemented easily. PMID:25954901

  9. Vitamin D as a Resilience Factor, Helpful for Survival of Potentially Fatal Conditions: A Hypothesis Emerging from Recent Findings of the ESTHER Cohort Study and the CHANCES Consortium.

    PubMed

    Schöttker, Ben; Brenner, Hermann

    2015-05-06

    There is debate on whether vitamin D deficiency is a risk factor for major chronic diseases and premature death or whether observed associations were just confounded by general health status. Here, we review recent results from the Epidemiologische Studie zu Chancen der Verhütung, Früherkennung und optimierten Therapie chronischer Erkrankungen in der älteren Bevölkerung (ESTHER) cohort study and the Consortium on Heatlh and Ageing: Network of Cohorts from Europe and the United States (CHANCES) that suggest that vitamin D deficiency may not be a risk factor for the development of cardiovascular diseases and cancer but may be a risk factor for fatal instances of these diseases. Furthermore, analyses comprehensively adjusted for the health status showed that the association of vitamin D and mortality was very likely not confounded by general health status. These results suggest that vitamin D could be a marker of resilience to fatality of potentially fatal diseases. Sufficient vitamin D serum concentrations may be needed to regulate the response of the immune system when it is challenged by severe diseases to prevent a fatal course of the disease. If this hypothesis can be verified through basic research studies and adequately designed randomized controlled trials, it could have important public health implications because vitamin D deficiency is very common worldwide, and interventions could be implemented easily.

  10. What Factors Are Related to Success on Conditional Release/Discharge? Findings from the New Orleans Forensic Aftercare Clinic: 2002–2013

    PubMed Central

    Manguno-Mire, Gina M.; Coffman, Kelly L.; DeLand, Sarah M.; Thompson, John W.; Myers, Leann

    2015-01-01

    The present study investigated the empirically based factors that predicted success on conditional release among a sample of individuals conditionally discharged in Louisiana. Not guilty by reason of insanity acquittees and individuals on conditional release/discharge for incompetency to stand trial were included in the study. Success on conditional release was defined as maintenance of conditional release during the study period. Recidivism (arrest on new charges) and incidents were empirically evaluated. Success on conditional release was maintained in over 70% of individuals. Recidivism was low, with only five arrests on new charges. Success on conditional release was predicted by financial resources, not having a personality disorder, and having fewer total incidents in the program. After controlling for the influence of other variables, having an incident on conditional release was predicted by a substance use diagnosis and being released from jail. Individuals conditionally released from jail showed fewer number of days to first incident (67 vs. 575 days) compared with individuals discharged from the hospital. These data provide support for the successful management of forensic patients in the community via conditional release, although they highlight specific factors that should be considered when developing community-based release programming. Conditional release programs should consider empirical factors in the development of risk assessment and risk management approaches to improve successful maintenance of community-based forensic treatment alternatives. PMID:25328070

  11. What factors are related to success on conditional release/discharge? Findings from the New Orleans forensic aftercare clinic: 2002-2013.

    PubMed

    Manguno-Mire, Gina M; Coffman, Kelly L; DeLand, Sarah M; Thompson, John W; Myers, Leann

    2014-09-01

    The present study investigated the empirically based factors that predicted success on conditional release among a sample of individuals conditionally discharged in Louisiana. Not guilty by reason of insanity acquittees and individuals on conditional release/discharge for incompetency to stand trial were included in the study. Success on conditional release was defined as maintenance of conditional release during the study period. Recidivism (arrest on new charges) and incidents were empirically evaluated. Success on conditional release was maintained in over 70% of individuals. Recidivism was low, with only five arrests on new charges. Success on conditional release was predicted by financial resources, not having a personality disorder, and having fewer total incidents in the program. After controlling for the influence of other variables, having an incident on conditional release was predicted by a substance use diagnosis and being released from jail. Individuals conditionally released from jail showed fewer number of days to first incident (67 vs. 575 days) compared with individuals discharged from the hospital. These data provide support for the successful management of forensic patients in the community via conditional release, although they highlight specific factors that should be considered when developing community-based release programming. Conditional release programs should consider empirical factors in the development of risk assessment and risk management approaches to improve successful maintenance of community-based forensic treatment alternatives.

  12. Are fit indices really fit to estimate the number of factors with categorical variables? Some cautionary findings via Monte Carlo simulation.

    PubMed

    Garrido, Luis Eduardo; Abad, Francisco José; Ponsoda, Vicente

    2016-03-01

    An early step in the process of construct validation consists of establishing the fit of an unrestricted "exploratory" factorial model for a prespecified number of common factors. For this initial unrestricted model, researchers have often recommended and used fit indices to estimate the number of factors to retain. Despite the logical appeal of this approach, little is known about the actual accuracy of fit indices in the estimation of data dimensionality. The present study aimed to reduce this gap by systematically evaluating the performance of 4 commonly used fit indices-the comparative fit index (CFI), the Tucker-Lewis index (TLI), the root mean square error of approximation (RMSEA), and the standardized root mean square residual (SRMR)-in the estimation of the number of factors with categorical variables, and comparing it with what is arguably the current golden rule, Horn's (1965) parallel analysis. The results indicate that the CFI and TLI provide nearly identical estimations and are the most accurate fit indices, followed at a step below by the RMSEA, and then by the SRMR, which gives notably poor dimensionality estimates. Difficulties in establishing optimal cutoff values for the fit indices and the general superiority of parallel analysis, however, suggest that applied researchers are better served by complementing their theoretical considerations regarding dimensionality with the estimates provided by the latter method.

  13. Compilation of selected marine radioecological data for the US Subseabed Program: Summaries of available radioecological concentration factors and biological half-lives

    SciTech Connect

    Gomez, L.S.; Marietta, M.G.; Jackson, D.W.

    1987-04-01

    The US Subseabed Disposal Program has compiled an extensive concentration factor and biological half-life data base from the international marine radioecological literature. A microcomputer-based data management system has been implemented to provide statistical and graphic summaries of these data. The data base is constructed in a manner which allows subsets to be sorted using a number of interstudy variables such as organism category, tissue/organ category, geographic location (for in situ studies), and several laboratory-related conditions (e.g., exposure time and exposure concentration). This report updates earlier reviews and provides summaries of the tabulated data. In addition to the concentration factor/biological half-life data base, we provide an outline of other published marine radioecological works. Our goal is to present these data in a form that enables those concerned with predictive assessment of radiation dose in the marine environment to make a more judicious selection of data for a given application. 555 refs., 19 figs., 7 tabs.

  14. Objectively-measured physical activity in children is influenced by social indicators rather than biological lifecourse factors: Evidence from a Brazilian cohort.

    PubMed

    Knuth, Alan G; Silva, Inácio Crochemore M; van Hees, Vincent T; Cordeira, Kelly; Matijasevich, Alícia; Barros, Aluísio J D; Santos, Iná; Ekelund, Ulf; Hallal, Pedro Curi

    2017-04-01

    The aim of this study was to examine the longitudinal influences of early life social and biological indicators on objectively measured physical activity. All newborns in 2004 in the city of Pelotas, Southern Brazil were enrolled in a birth cohort study. At the age of 6years, a follow-up visit included objective assessment of overall physical activity (summarized in milli-g, 1mg=0.001g) by tri-axial wrist worn accelerometry. The associations between early life exposures, such as type of delivery, parity, birth weight, preterm delivery, maternal physical activity, socioeconomic position, and overall physical activity were examined. Valid accelerometry data were obtained from 2604 children (78.2% of the eligible individuals). Girls were less active than boys (β=-8.65mg; 95% CI -10.0; -7.30). Higher socioeconomic position was related to lower activity levels (β=-9.69mg. 95% CI -12.45; -6.93) and a similar association was found with maternal schooling. No associations were found with birthweight, type of delivery or preterm delivery. This study provides evidence for the role of some social factors in explaining children's physical activity behaviors, and minimizes the influence of some early life biological factors at determining physical activity levels.

  15. Expression profile, clinical significance, and biological function of insulin-like growth factor 2 messenger RNA-binding proteins in non-small cell lung cancer.

    PubMed

    Shi, Run; Yu, Xinnian; Wang, Yajing; Sun, Jing; Sun, Qi; Xia, Wenjie; Dong, Gaochao; Wang, Anpeng; Gao, Zhaojia; Jiang, Feng; Xu, Lin

    2017-04-01

    Insulin-like growth factor 2 messenger RNA-binding proteins have been described to associate with malignant process in many cancers. However, the role of insulin-like growth factor 2 messenger RNA-binding protein family has not been thoroughly elucidated in non-small cell lung cancer. This study was to investigate the expression profile, clinical significance, and biological function of insulin-like growth factor 2 messenger RNA-binding proteins family in non-small cell lung cancer. The expression levels of IGF2BP1-IGF2BP3 in tumor and adjacent normal tissues were determined, and association with clinicopathological features and overall survival was investigated by analyzing The Cancer Genome Atlas lung cancer database. Proliferation, migration, invasion assays, and flow-cytometry analysis were used to investigate the biological function in vitro. Insulin-like growth factor 2 messenger RNA-binding protein expression levels were significantly increased in non-small cell lung cancer compared to adjacent normal lung tissues. Chi-square test indicated that IGF2BP1 and IGF2BP3 expressions correlated with some meaningful clinical characteristics in non-small cell lung cancer. Kaplan-Meier analysis showed that high-level expression of IGF2BP1 or IGF2BP3 predicted poor overall survival in lung adenocarcinoma patients. Multivariate regression analysis showed that high level of IGF2BP3 was an independent risk factor for poor prognosis in lung adenocarcinoma patients (hazard ratio = 1.616, p = 0.017). In vitro, knockdown of IGF2BP3 inhibited lung adenocarcinoma cell proliferation by inducing cell cycle arrest and apoptosis, and undermined abilities of migration and invasion, and overexpression of IGF2BP3 could promote malignant phenotypes in lung adenocarcinoma cells. Our study revealed that expression of insulin-like growth factor 2 messenger RNA-binding proteins was widely upregulated and correlated with some certain clinicopathological features in non-small cell

  16. Studies on the biological effects of ozone: 2. Induction of tumor necrosis factor (TNF-alpha) on human leucocytes

    SciTech Connect

    Paulesu, L.; Luzzi, E.; Bocci, V. )

    1991-10-01

    The effect of ozone as a probable inducer of tumor necrosis factor (TNF-alpha) has been investigated on human blood and on Ficoll-purified blood mononuclear cells (PBMC). Samples were exposed at different ozone concentrations ranging from 2.2 to 108 micrograms/ml and incubated at 37 degrees C in an 95% air-5% CO2 atmosphere. At predetermined times, all cell supernatants were tested for TNF activity and some PBMC cultures were examined for DNA synthesis. The authors have shown that ozone concentration is critical in terms of TNF production and of cell mitogenesis and that, owing to the presence of erythrocytes, higher ozone concentrations are required to be effective in blood than in PBMC. Because ozonization of blood is a procedure followed in several European countries for the treatment of viral diseases and tumors, the release of factors with antiviral and immunomodulatory activities by leukocytes may explain the mechanism of action of ozone and of autohemotherapy.

  17. Exploring the impact of early life factors on inequalities in risk of overweight in UK children: findings from the UK Millennium Cohort Study

    PubMed Central

    Massion, Samuel; Wickham, Sophie; Pearce, Anna; Barr, Ben; Law, Catherine; Taylor-Robinson, David

    2016-01-01

    Background Overweight and obesity in childhood are socially patterned, with higher prevalence in more disadvantaged populations, but it is unclear to what extent early life factors attenuate the social inequalities found in childhood overweight/obesity. Methods We estimated relative risks (RRs) for being overweight (combining with obesity) at age 11 in 11 764 children from the UK Millennium Cohort Study (MCS) according to socio-economic circumstances (SEC). Early life risk factors were explored to assess if they attenuated associations between SECs and overweight. Results 28.84% of children were overweight at 11 years. Children of mothers with no academic qualifications were more likely to be overweight (RR 1.72, 95% CI 1.48 to 2.01) compared to children of mothers with degrees and higher degrees. Controlling for prenatal, perinatal, and early life characteristics (particularly maternal pre-pregnancy overweight and maternal smoking during pregnancy) reduced the RR for overweight to 1.44, 95% CI 1.23 to 1.69 in the group with the lowest academic qualifications compared to the highest. Conclusions We observed a clear social gradient in overweight 11-year-old children using a representative UK sample. Moreover, we identified specific early life risk factors, including maternal smoking during pregnancy and maternal pre-pregnancy overweight, that partially account for the social inequalities found in childhood overweight. Policies to support mothers to maintain a healthy weight, breastfeed and abstain from smoking during pregnancy are important to improve maternal and child health outcomes, and our study provides some evidence that they may also help to address the continuing rise in inequalities in childhood overweight. PMID:27162002

  18. Prevalence of Low Testosterone and Predisposing Risk Factors in Men With Type 1 Diabetes Mellitus: Findings From the DCCT/EDIC

    PubMed Central

    Holt, Sarah K.; Lopushnyan, Natalya; Hotaling, James; Sarma, Aruna V.; Dunn, Rodney L.; Cleary, Patricia A.; Braffett, Barbara H.; Gatcomb, Patricia; Martin, Catherine; Herman, William H.

    2014-01-01

    Context: Previous studies have demonstrated lower testosterone concentrations in men with type 2 diabetes mellitus. Data in men with type 1 diabetes mellitus (T1DM) are limited. Objective: Our objective was to determine the prevalence of low testosterone in men with T1DM and identify predisposing factors. Design, Setting, and Participants: This was a cross-sectional study of men with T1DM participating in UroEDIC (n = 641), an ancillary study of urologic complications in the Epidemiology of Diabetes Interventions and Complications (EDIC). Main Outcome Measures: Total serum testosterone levels were measured using mass spectrometry, and SHBG levels were measured using sandwich immunoassay on samples from EDIC year 17/18. Calculated free testosterone was determined using an algorithm incorporating binding constants for albumin and SHBG. Low testosterone was defined as total testosterone <300 mg/dL. Multivariate regression models were used to compare age, body mass index, factors related to diabetes treatment and control, and diabetic complications with testosterone levels. Results: Mean age was 51 years. Sixty-one men (9.5%) had testosterone <300 mg/dL. Decreased testosterone was significantly associated with obesity (P < .01), older age (P < .01) and decreased SHBG (P < .001). Insulin dose was inversely associated with calculated free testosterone (P = .02). Hypertension retained a significant adjusted association with lower testosterone (P = .05). There was no observed significant relationship between lower testosterone and nephropathy, peripheral neuropathy, and autonomic neuropathy measures. Conclusion: The men with T1DM in the EDIC cohort do not appear to have a high prevalence of androgen deficiency. Risk factors associated with low testosterone levels in this population are similar to the general population. PMID:25013994

  19. Physical inactivity is a strong risk factor for stroke in the oldest old: Findings from a multi-ethnic population (the Northern Manhattan Study).

    PubMed

    Willey, Joshua Z; Moon, Yeseon P; Sacco, Ralph L; Greenlee, Heather; Diaz, Keith M; Wright, Clinton B; Elkind, Mitchell Sv; Cheung, Yuen K

    2017-02-01

    Background The fastest growing segment of the population is those age ≥80 who have the highest stroke incidence. Risk factor management is complicated by polypharmacy-related adverse events. Aims To characterize the impact of physical inactivity for stroke by age in a multi-ethnic prospective cohort study (NOMAS, n = 3298). Methods Leisure time physical activity was assessed by a validated questionnaire and our primary exposure was physical inactivity (PI). Participants were followed annually for incident stroke. We fit Cox-proportional hazard models to calculate hazard ratios and 95% confidence intervals (HR 95% CI) for the association of PI and other risk factors with risk of stroke including two-way interaction terms between the primary exposures and age (<80 vs. ≥80). Results The mean age was 69 ± 10.3 years and 562 (17%) were ≥80 at enrolment. PI was common in the cohort (40.8%). Over a median of 14 years, we found 391 strokes. We found a significant interaction of age ≥80 on the risk of stroke with PI ( p = 0.03). In stratified models, PI versus any activity (adjusted HR 1.60, 95%CI 1.05-2.42) was associated with an increased risk of stroke among those ≥80. Conclusion Physical inactivity is a treatable risk factor for stroke among those older than age 80. Improving activity may reduce the risk of stroke in this segment of the population.

  20. Factors related to receipt of non-cancer-related transurethral prostatectomy: findings from a large prospective study of 106 769 middle-aged and older Australian men

    PubMed Central

    Joshy, Grace; Soga, Kay; Korda, Rosemary J; Patel, Manish I; Banks, Emily

    2017-01-01

    Background Transurethral prostatectomy (TURP) is a common surgical intervention for chronic lower urinary tract symptoms (LUTS). Little large-scale evidence exists on factors related to receipt of non-cancer-related TURP. Methods A prospective study of men aged ≥45 years participating in the 45 and Up Study, a large Australian cohort study, without prior prostatectomy and/or bowel/genital/urinary-tract cancer; questionnaire data were linked to hospitalisations and deaths. HRs for TURP were estimated in relation to multiple factors, adjusting for confounders. Results There were 3416 incident TURPs among 106 769 men (median follow-up 5.8 years), with rates of 1.8, 5.3, 9.1 and 11.4/1000 person-years for ages 45–54, 55–64, 65–74 and ≥75 years, respectively. Age-adjusted rates of TURP varied markedly according to baseline LUTS from 2.2/1000 person-years with no/mild symptoms to 30.7/1000 person-years with severe symptoms. Annual household income ≥$70 000 versus <$20 000, having private health insurance and living in major cities were associated with higher TURP rates; there were no significant differences according to baseline diabetes, stroke, high blood pressure or cardiovascular disease. Men reporting severe versus no physical functioning limitation, high versus low psychological distress or poor versus excellent self-rated health were 36–51% more likely to undergo procedures overall, but were 24–37% less likely to undergo procedures following additional adjustment for need (baseline LUTS). Conclusions TURP rates were most strongly related to baseline LUTS and age, consistent with appropriate health services targeting. Lower TURP rates in men experiencing socioeconomic disadvantage and with poor health/disability, after accounting for baseline LUTS, suggest inequity and factors such as frailty and risks related to surgery. PMID:28179415

  1. Domestic violence against women as a risk factor for depressive and anxiety disorders: findings from domestic violence household survey in Tehran, Iran.

    PubMed

    Ahmadzad-Asl, Masoud; Davoudi, Farnoush; Zarei, Noushin; Mohammad-Sadeghi, Homa; Rasoulian, Maryam

    2016-10-01

    Domestic violence (DV) especially intimate partner violence is a global health problem responsible for significant part of burden of diseases in women. Mental health problems such as depression and anxiety are possibly results and resulted in IPV. To investigate correlation between IPV and depression and anxiety among married women, in a household survey of married women in Tehran, Iran, at summer 2011, we recruited 615 samples with cluster sampling method and they are directly asked about experience of 23 different types of physical and non-physical IPV during marital life and last 12 months. Depression and anxiety were assessed by Beck depression inventory II (BDI) and Beck Anxiety inventory (BAI). Multinominal regression model was used to assess the independent relationship of factor on IPV. Mean (±SE) age and duration of marriage were 42.6 ± 0.9 and 22 ± 0.8, respectively. Non-physical violence and physical violence during marital life reported in 77.2 and 35.1 %. Clinically significant depression and anxiety was reported in 15.3 and 32.7 % of women, respectively. The odds ratio (95 % CI) of clinically significant depression and anxiety in DV victims were 5.8 (2.3-14.6) and 2.6 (1.6-4.3). DV as a social factor is significantly correlated factor with depression and anxiety. Comprehensive view and collaborative work to detect and address social determinants of mental illness like DV is a crucial point in mental health promotion programs.

  2. Micro-level economic factors and incentives in Children’s energy balance related behaviours - findings from the ENERGY European cross-section questionnaire survey

    PubMed Central

    2012-01-01

    Background To date, most research on obesogenic environments facing school children has focused on physical and socio-cultural environments. The role of economic factors has been investigated to a much lesser extent. Our objective was to explore the association of micro-level economic factors and incentives with sports activities and intake of soft drinks and fruit juice in 10-12 year-old school children across Europe, and to explore price sensitivity in children’s soft drink consumption and correlates of this price sensitivity. Methods Data for the study originate from a cross-sectional survey undertaken in seven European countries (Belgium, Greece, Hungary, Netherlands, Norway, Slovenia and Spain) in 2010 among 10-12 year-old school children and their parents. In total, 7234 child questionnaires and 6002 parent questionnaires were completed. The child questionnaire included questions addressing self-reported weekly intake of soft drinks and fruit juices and time spent on sports activities, perception of parental support for sports activities, use of pocket money for soft drinks and perceived price responsiveness. Parent questionnaires included questions addressing the role of budget and price considerations in decisions regarding children’s sports activities, soft drink consumption, home practices and rules and socio-demographic background variables. Data were analysed using multiple linear regression and discrete-choice (ordered probit) modelling. Results Economic factors were found to be associated with children’s sports participation and sugary drink consumption, explaining 27% of the variation in time for sports activities, and 27% and 12% of the variation in the children’s soft drink and juice consumption, respectively. Parents’ financial support was found to be an important correlate (Beta =0.419) of children’s sports activities. Children’s pocket money was a strong correlate (Beta =21.034) of soft drink consumption. The majority of the

  3. Household trends in access to improved water sources and sanitation facilities in Vietnam and associated factors: findings from the Multiple Indicator Cluster Surveys, 2000-2011.

    PubMed

    Tuyet-Hanh, Tran Thi; Lee, Jong-Koo; Oh, Juhwan; Van Minh, Hoang; Ou Lee, Chul; Hoan, Le Thi; Nam, You-Seon; Long, Tran Khanh

    2016-01-01

    Background Despite progress made by the Millennium Development Goal (MDG) number 7.C, Vietnam still faces challenges with regard to the provision of access to safe drinking water and basic sanitation. Objective This paper describes household trends in access to improved water sources and sanitation facilities separately, and analyses factors associated with access to improved water sources and sanitation facilities in combination. Design Secondary data from the Vietnam Multiple Indicator Cluster Survey in 2000, 2006, and 2011 were analyzed. Descriptive statistics and tests of significance describe trends over time in access to water and sanitation by location, demographic and socio-economic factors. Binary logistic regressions (2000, 2006, and 2011) describe associations between access to water and sanitation, and geographic, demographic, and socio-economic factors. Results There have been some outstanding developments in access to improved water sources and sanitation facilities from 2000 to 2011. In 2011, the proportion of households with access to improved water sources and sanitation facilities reached 90% and 77%, respectively, meeting the 2015 MDG targets for safe drinking water and basic sanitation set at 88% and 75%, respectively. However, despite these achievements, in 2011, only 74% of households overall had access to combined improved drinking water and sanitation facilities. There were also stark differences between regions. In 2011, only 47% of households had access to both improved water and sanitation facilities in the Mekong River Delta compared with 94% in the Red River Delta. In 2011, households in urban compared to rural areas were more than twice as likely (odds ratio [OR]: 2.2; 95% confidence interval [CI]: 1.9-2.5) to have access to improved water and sanitation facilities in combination, and households in the highest compared with the lowest wealth quintile were over 40 times more likely (OR: 42.3; 95% CI: 29.8-60.0). Conclusions More efforts

  4. A geographic comparison of the resting site fidelity behaviour in an intertidal limpet: Correlation with biological and physical factors

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Nuñez, Jesús D.; Ocampo, Emiliano H.; Cledón, Maximiliano

    2014-05-01

    Many organisms vary their behaviour in response to environmental change. In stressful habitats motile organisms often exhibit behavioural patterns that are consistent with stress-minimizing strategies. In the present study we analysed the proportions of individuals with strong site fidelity and distances travelled by “unfaithful” individuals from their home scar at different temporal and spatial scales in the intertidal gastropod Siphonaria lessoni. We also assessed the behavioural response of S. lessoni to biological pressures such as conspecific population density and food availability (assessed by measures of chlorophyll a). The experiments were carried out in the arid climate of Patagonia on the rocky intertidal of Las Grutas (LG), and in the humid climate of The Pampas on the rocky intertidal of Mar del Plata (MDP) Argentina. At each site, shells of five hundred animals were marked with epoxy paint. Movement was measured as distance to a reference point after periods of one, five and ten days. Our results showed a positive relationship between food availability, site fidelity and distance to home scar for almost all observation days, but no relationship between population density and behavioural variables. Limpets in LG were more “faithful” than in MDP. Unfaithful limpets had the same mean displacement for all days and seasons except for Spring day-1 where MDP was higher than in LG and in Autumn day-10 where MDP was smaller than LG. The present results thus show differential response behaviour in intertidal limpets probably driven by the environmental conditions in which they live.

  5. Cholesterol-based cationic lipids for gene delivery: contribution of molecular structure factors to physico-chemical and biological properties.

    PubMed

    Sheng, Ruilong; Luo, Ting; Li, Hui; Sun, Jingjing; Wang, Zhao; Cao, Amin

    2014-04-01

    In this work, we prepared a series of cholesterol-based cationic (Cho-cat) lipids bearing cholesterol hydrophobe, natural amino acid headgroups (lysine/histidine) and linkage (carbonate ester/ether) bonds. In which, the natural amino acid headgroups made dominant contribution to their physico-chemical and biological properties. Among the lipids, the l-lysine headgroup bearing lipids (Cho-es/et-Lys) showed higher pDNA binding affinity and were able to form larger sized and higher surface charged lipoplexes than that of l-histidine headgroup bearing lipids (Cho-es/et-His), they also demonstrated higher transfection efficacy and higher membrane disruption capacities than that of their l-histidine headgroup bearing counterparts. However, compared to the contributions of the headgroups, the (carbonate ester/ether) linkage bonds showed much less affects. Besides, it could be noted that, Cho-es/et-Lys lipids exhibited very high luciferase gene transfection efficiency that almost reached the transfection level of "gold standard" bPEI-25k, made them potential transfection reagents for practical application. Moreover, the results facilitated the understanding for the structure-activity relationship of the cholesterol-based cationic lipids, and also paved a simple and efficient way for achieving high transfection efficiency by modification of suitable headgroups on lipid gene carriers.

  6. The discovery of Hepatocyte Growth Factor (HGF) and its significance for cell biology, life sciences and clinical medicine

    PubMed Central

    NAKAMURA, Toshikazu; MIZUNO, Shinya

    2010-01-01

    It has been more than 25 years since HGF was discovered as a mitogen of hepatocytes. HGF is produced by stromal cells, and stimulates epithelial cell proliferation, motility, morphogenesis and angiogenesis in various organs via tyrosine phosphorylation of its receptor, c-Met. In fetal stages, HGF-neutralization, or c-Met gene destruction, leads to hypoplasia of many organs, indicating that HGF signals are essential for organ development. Endogenous HGF is required for self-repair of injured livers, kidneys, lungs and so on. In addition, HGF exerts protective effects on epithelial and non-epithelial organs (including the heart and brain) via anti-apoptotic and anti-inflammatory signals. During organ diseases, plasma HGF levels significantly increased, while anti-HGF antibody infusion accelerated tissue destruction in rodents. Thus, endogenous HGF is required for minimization of diseases, while insufficient production of HGF leads to organ failure. This is the reason why HGF supplementation produces therapeutic outcomes under pathological conditions. Moreover, emerging studies delineated key roles of HGF during tumor metastasis, while HGF-antagonism leads to anti-tumor outcomes. Taken together, HGF-based molecules, including HGF-variants, HGF-fragments and c-Met-binders are available as regenerative or anti-tumor drugs. Molecular analysis of the HGF-c-Met system could provide bridges between basic biology and clinical medicine. PMID:20551596

  7. Dietary Very Long Chain Saturated Fatty Acids and Metabolic Factors: Findings from the Korea National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey 2013

    PubMed Central

    Lee, Youn Sue; Cho, Yoonsu

    2015-01-01

    The present study was aim to evaluate the association between very long chain saturated fatty acids (VLSFAs) and metabolic syndrome (MetS) in Korean population. The study population were recruited from the Korea National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey VI (2013). Using the cross-sectional study design, socio-demographic factors, medical history, and clinical measurements were investigated according to quartiles of VLSFAs intake. The associations between each and sum of VLSFAs intake and MetS were assessed by logistic regression. The result indicated that higher intake of VLSFAs was significantly associated with favorable metabolic status, including lower levels of circulating triglyceride (TG) (p < 0.05). Additionally, subjects with higher intake of arachidic acid and total VLSFAs were negatively associated with MetS risk compared to subjects with lower intake of those fatty acids (p < 0.05). In conclusion, dietary VLSFAs intake was associated with metabolic risk factors and lower risk of MetS in Korean population. PMID:26251837

  8. Dietary Very Long Chain Saturated Fatty Acids and Metabolic Factors: Findings from the Korea National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey 2013.

    PubMed

    Lee, Youn Sue; Cho, Yoonsu; Shin, Min-Jeong

    2015-07-01

    The present study was aim to evaluate the association between very long chain saturated fatty acids (VLSFAs) and metabolic syndrome (MetS) in Korean population. The study population were recruited from the Korea National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey VI (2013). Using the cross-sectional study design, socio-demographic factors, medical history, and clinical measurements were investigated according to quartiles of VLSFAs intake. The associations between each and sum of VLSFAs intake and MetS were assessed by logistic regression. The result indicated that higher intake of VLSFAs was significantly associated with favorable metabolic status, including lower levels of circulating triglyceride (TG) (p < 0.05). Additionally, subjects with higher intake of arachidic acid and total VLSFAs were negatively associated with MetS risk compared to subjects with lower intake of those fatty acids (p < 0.05). In conclusion, dietary VLSFAs intake was associated with metabolic risk factors and lower risk of MetS in Korean population.

  9. Risk Factors for Decreased Quality of Life in Thyroid Cancer Survivors: Initial Findings from the North American Thyroid Cancer Survivorship Study

    PubMed Central

    James, Benjamin; Nagar, Sapna; Kaplan, Sharone; Seng, Vanessa; Ahsan, Habibul; Angelos, Peter; Kaplan, Edwin L.; Guerrero, Marlon A.; Kuo, Jennifer H.; Lee, James A.; Mitmaker, Elliot J.; Moalem, Jacob; Ruan, Daniel T.; Shen, Wen T.; Grogan, Raymon H.

    2015-01-01

    Background: The prevalence of thyroid cancer survivors is rising rapidly due to the combination of an increasing incidence, high survival rates, and a young age at diagnosis. The physical and psychosocial morbidity of thyroid cancer has not been adequately described, and this study therefore sought to improve the understanding of the impact of thyroid cancer on quality of life (QoL) by conducting a large-scale survivorship study. Methods: Thyroid cancer survivors were recruited from a multicenter collaborative network of clinics, national survivorship groups, and social media. Study participants completed a validated QoL assessment tool that measures four morbidity domains: physical, psychological, social, and spiritual effects. Data were also collected on participant demographics, medical comorbidities, tumor characteristics, and treatment modalities. Results: A total of 1174 participants with thyroid cancer were recruited. Of these, 89.9% were female, with an average age of 48 years, and a mean time from diagnosis of five years. The mean overall QoL was 5.56/10, with 0 being the worst. Scores for each of the sub-domains were 5.83 for physical, 5.03 for psychological, 6.48 for social, and 5.16 for spiritual well-being. QoL scores begin to improve five years after diagnosis. Female sex, young age at diagnosis, and lower educational attainment were highly predictive of decreased QoL. Conclusion: Thyroid cancer diagnosis and treatment can result in a decreased QoL. The present findings indicate that better tools to measure and improve thyroid cancer survivor QoL are needed. The authors plan to follow-up on these findings in the near future, as enrollment and data collection are ongoing. PMID:26431811

  10. Biological and chemical factors driving the temporal distribution of cyanobacteria and heterotrophic bacteria in a eutrophic lake (West Lake, China).

    PubMed

    Song, Hao; Xu, Jiahui; Lavoie, Michel; Fan, Xiaoji; Liu, Guangfu; Sun, Liwei; Fu, Zhengwei; Qian, Haifeng

    2017-02-01

    Physico-chemical parameters, hydrological conditions, and microbial interactions can affect the growth and persistence of cyanobacteria, but the interacting effects among these bloom-forming factors are still poorly known. This hampers our capacity to predict the occurrence of cyanobacterial bloom accurately. Here, we studied the relationship between temperature, N and P cycles, and the microbial community abundance and diversity at 0.5 m under the surface of West Lake (China) from January 21 to November 20, 2015, in order to better understand the key factors regulating temporal changes in the cyanobacterial community. Using high throughput sequencing of the 16S rRNA gene V3-V4 region, we studied the diversity and abundance of bacteria. In parallel, we measured physico-chemical parameters and followed the abundance of key genes involved in N fixation, denitrification, and nutrient uptake. Multivariate analyses suggest that P concentration and water temperature are the key factors controlling the outbreak of summer cyanobacterial bloom. RT-qPCR analyses of the bacterial community and measurements of the copy number of denitrification-related gene (nirK, nosZ, nirS) show that denitrification potential and denitrifying bacteria relative abundance (Pseudomonas and Bacillus) increased in concert with diazotrophic cyanobacterial genera (Anabaena, Nostoc, Aphanizomenon flos-aquae) and the common bloom-forming non-diazotrophic cyanobacterium genus Microcystis. The present study brings new insights on the complex interplay between physico-chemical parameters, heterotrophic bacterial community composition, nitrogen cycle, and cyanobacteria dominance in a eutrophic lake.

  11. Production and secretion of biologically active human granulocyte-macrophage colony stimulating factor in transgenic tomato suspension cultures.

    PubMed

    Kwon, Tae-Ho; Kim, Young-Sook; Lee, Jae-Hwa; Yang, Moon-Sik

    2003-09-01

    A complementary DNA encoding human granulocyte-macrophage colony stimulating factor (hGM-CSF) was cloned and introduced into tomato (Lycopersicon esculentum cv. Seokwang) using Agrobacterium-mediated transformation. Genomic PCR and Northern blot analysis demonstrated the integration of the construction into the plant nuclear genome and expression of the hGM-CSF in transgenic tomato. The cell suspension culture was established from leaf-derived calli of the transgenic tomato plants transformed with the hGM-CSF gene. Recombinant hGM-CSF was synthesized by the transgenic cell culture and secreted into the growth medium at 45 microg l(-1) after 10 d' cultivation.

  12. Psychosocial-Environmental Risk Factors for Suicide Attempts in Adolescents with Suicidal Ideation: Findings from a Sample of 73,238 Adolescents.

    PubMed

    Kim, Sun Mi; Baek, Ji Hyun; Han, Doug Hyun; Lee, Young Sik; Yurgelun-Todd, Deborah A

    2015-08-01

    We determined risk factors that discriminate between suicide attempt (SA) adolescents and suicidal ideation only (SI only) adolescents using data from the 2010 Korea Youth Risk Behavior Web-based Survey (12-19 years; N = 73,238). In males, heavy alcohol use, drug use, and high perceived sadness/hopelessness showed significant effects on the presence of SA versus the presence of SI only. In females, along with these variables, low academic achievement, poor perceived health status, high perceived stress, and unhealthy coping strategy were also significantly related to the presence of SA versus SI only. Therefore, clinical interventions targeting adolescents' psychological distress are warranted to prevent suicide.

  13. Influence of Exposure to Chronic Persistent Low-Dose Ionizing Radiation on the Tumor Biology of Clear-Cell Renal-Cell Carcinoma. An Immunohistochemical and Morphometric Study of Angiogenesis and Vascular Related Factors.

    PubMed

    Ruiz-Saurí, Amparo; Valencia-Villa, Gerardo; Romanenko, Alina; Pérez, Jesús; García, Raúl; García, Heydi; Benavent, José; Sancho-Tello, María; Carda, Carmen; Llombart-Bosch, Antonio

    2016-10-01

    Increased angiogenesis is related to boosted growth and malignancy in carcinomas. "Chronic Persistent Low-Dose Ionizing Radiation" (CPLDIR) exposure increases incidence and aggressive behavior of clear-cell renal-cell carcinoma (CCRCC). The aim was to study the biology of angiogenesis, including microvessel density (MVD), in human clear-cell renal-cell carcinomas (CCRCC) originating from a radio-contaminated geographical area (Ukraine) and to compare with similar tumors diagnosed in non-contaminated regions of Europe (Spain, Valencia) and Latin America (Colombia, Barranquilla). MVD was comparatively examined in 124 patients diagnosed with CCRCC from three geographical areas by means of digital micro-imaging and computerized analysis. Additionally, 50 adult normal kidneys were used for controls (autopsy kidneys from Valencia and Barranquilla). Furthermore, an immunohistochemical study of several vascular related growth factors was undertaken using a similar methodology. MVD as well as VEFG are the most discriminating factors associated with an aggressive behavior of CCRCC. Their expression increased in proportion to the level of exposure to chronic low-dose ionizing radiation in Ukrainian patients in the 25 years since the Chernobyl accident substantiated by comparison with the two control groups of renal carcinomas present in non-irradiated areas (Spain and Colombia). No major biological differences relating to angiogenesis appear to exist between the CCRCC diagnosed in two distant geographical areas of the world. HIF-1α expression was similar in all groups, with no statistical significance. Present findings demonstrate the existence of a significant relationship between MVD and VEGF in CCRCC: an increased expression of VEGF is associated with a high level of angiogenesis.

  14. Prevalence and risk factors for self-reported diabetes among adult men and women in India: findings from a national cross-sectional survey

    PubMed Central

    Agrawal, Sutapa; Ebrahim, Shah

    2011-01-01

    Objective We examined the distribution of diabetes and modifiable risk factors to provide data to aid diabetes prevention programmes in India. Design Population-based cross-sectional survey of men and women included in India's third National Family Health Survey (NFHS-3, 2005–2006). Setting The sample is a multistage cluster sample with an overall response rate of 98 %. All states of India are represented in the sample (except the small Union Territories), covering more than 99 % of the country's population. Subjects Women (n 99 574) and men (n 56 742) aged 20–49 years residing in the sample households. Results Prevalence of diabetes was 1598/100 000 (95 % CI 1462, 1735) among men and 1054/100 000 (95 % CI 974, 1134) among women in India. Rural–urban and marked geographic variation were found with higher rates in south and north-eastern India. Weekly and daily fish intake contributed to a significantly higher risk of diabetes among both women and men. Risks of diabetes increased with increased BMI, age and wealth status of both women and men, but no effects of the consumption of milk/curd, vegetables, eggs, television watching, alcohol consumption or smoking were found. Daily consumption of pulse/beans or fruits was associated with a significantly reduced risk of diabetes among women, whereas non-significant inverse associations were observed in the case of men. Conclusions Prevalence was underestimated using self-reports. The wide variation in self-reported diabetes is unlikely to be due entirely to reporting biases or access to health care, and indicates that modifiable risk factors exist. Prevention of diabetes should focus on obesity and target specific socio-economic groups in India. PMID:22050916

  15. Consumption of ready-made meals and increased risk of obesity: findings from the Observation of Cardiovascular Risk Factors in Luxembourg (ORISCAV-LUX) study.

    PubMed

    Alkerwi, Ala'a; Crichton, Georgina E; Hébert, James R

    2015-01-28

    The consumption of ready-made meals, such as pre-packaged dishes, available at grocery stores and fast-food restaurants, is a habit related to our modern fast-paced lives. No study has examined the association of daily ready-made meal consumption with diet quality or health-related outcomes. The present study aimed to investigate the association between self-reported ready-made meal consumption and diet quality, as measured by compliance with dietary recommendations and with a set of adiposity measures, in a nationally representative sample of 1352 subjects, aged 18-69 years, participating in the nationwide population-based ORISCAV-LUX (Observation of Cardiovascular Risk Factors in Luxembourg) survey. The daily consumption of ready-made meals was calculated as follows: frequency of consumption × portion size × number of portions consumed. The sum of the daily consumption values of the eleven pre-packaged dishes included in the FFQ represented the total daily consumption of ready-made meals (g/d) for each participant. About 97% of the participants reported daily consumption of ready-made meals. The intake was highly prevalent in men living alone and varied according to education level. Ready-made meal consumption provided >7% of total daily energy. The fractions (%) of macro- and micronutrients derived from daily consumption of ready-made meals varied from 10% for total cholesterol to 0.65% for total fibre. Increased consumption of ready-made meals was found to be independently associated with abdominal obesity. On controlling for age, sex, socio-economic status and lifestyle factors, daily consumption of ready-made meals was found to be associated with higher energy intake and with poor compliance with national nutritional recommendations, and hence it could plausibly increase the risk of central obesity and fat deposition.

  16. Profile of a drunk driver and risk factors for drunk driving. Findings in roadside testing in the province of Uusimaa in Finland 1990-2008.

    PubMed

    Portman, M; Penttilä, A; Haukka, J; Rajalin, S; Eriksson, C J P; Gunnar, T; Koskimaa, H; Kuoppasalmi, K

    2013-09-10

    The aim of the present study was to define the profile of a drunk driver and to determine risk factors for drunk driving by analyzing data on both sober and drunk drivers. Systematic roadside surveys have been carried out in Southern Finland for over 18 years, with 20,000-30,000 drivers breath tested annually. During the study period, 1241 drunk drivers were caught (legal blood alcohol limit 0.50‰). The comparison material consisted of 3407 sober drivers. The surveys were designed to further investigate demographic features and driving habits of drivers. The prevalence of drunk driving has been 0.2% over the time period, with only random variations. According to the data, a typical drunk driver is a man aged 40-49 who has a valid driving license and drives his own car, usually alone, with a blood alcohol concentration (BAC) of 1.0‰. He has a job and is married or cohabiting. The profile remained consistent throughout the study period. The risk of drunk driving was found to be five times higher for men than for women. Divorcees and widow(er)s had a substantially higher risk factor for being caught drunk driving than married drivers. Drunk drivers are most likely to be caught by roadside testing on Saturday mornings. During the study period the blood alcohol limit for aggravated drunk driving was lowered in 1994 from 1.5 to 1.2‰. In 2004 the taxation of alcohol beverages was reduced by 30%. Neither of these measures affected the prevalence of drunk driving or the mean BAC of drunk drivers (p=0.63).

  17. Association of Sociodemographic Factors, Smoking-Related Beliefs, and Smoking Restrictions With Intention to Quit Smoking in Korean Adults: Findings From the ITC Korea Survey

    PubMed Central

    Myung, Seung-Kwon; Seo, Hong Gwan; Cheong, Yoo-Seock; Park, Sohee; Lee, Wonkyong B; Fong, Geoffrey T

    2012-01-01

    Background Few studies have reported the factors associated with intention to quit smoking among Korean adult smokers. This study aimed to examine sociodemographic characteristics, smoking-related beliefs, and smoking-restriction variables associated with intention to quit smoking among Korean adult smokers. Methods We used data from the International Tobacco Control Korea Survey, which was conducted from November through December 2005 by using random-digit dialing and computer-assisted telephone interviewing of male and female smokers aged 19 years or older in 16 metropolitan areas and provinces of Korea. We performed univariate analysis and multiple logistic regression analysis to identify predictors of intention to quit. Results A total of 995 respondents were included in the final analysis. Of those, 74.9% (n = 745) intended to quit smoking. In univariate analyses, smokers with an intention to quit were younger, smoked fewer cigarettes per day, had a higher annual income, were more educated, were more likely to have a religious affiliation, drank less alcohol per week, were less likely to have self-exempting beliefs, and were more likely to have self-efficacy beliefs regarding quitting, to believe that smoking had damaged their health, and to report that smoking was never allowed anywhere in their home. In multiple logistic regression analysis, higher education level, having a religious affiliation, and a higher self-efficacy regarding quitting were significantly associated with intention to quit. Conclusions Sociodemographic factors, smoking-related beliefs, and smoking restrictions at home were associated with intention to quit smoking among Korean adults. PMID:22186157

  18. Release of the angiogenic cytokine vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF) from platelets: significance for VEGF measurements and cancer biology.

    PubMed

    Banks, R E; Forbes, M A; Kinsey, S E; Stanley, A; Ingham, E; Walters, C; Selby, P J

    1998-03-01

    Vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF) is a potent angiogenic factor with a key role in several pathological processes, including tumour vascularization. Our preliminary observations indicated higher VEGF concentrations in serum samples than in matched plasma samples. We have now demonstrated that this difference is due to the presence of VEGF within platelets and its release upon their activation during coagulation. In eight healthy volunteers, serum VEGF concentrations ranged from 76 to 854 pg ml(-1) and were significantly higher (P < 0.01) than the matched citrated plasma VEGF concentrations, which ranged from < 9 to 42 pg ml(-1). Using platelet-rich plasma, mean (s.d.) platelet VEGF contents of 0.56 (0.36) pg of VEGF 10(-6) platelets were found. Immunocytochemistry demonstrated the cytoplasmic presence of VEGF within megakaryocytes and other cell types within the bone marrow. From examination of the effects of blood sample processing on circulating VEGF concentrations, it is apparent that for accurate measurements, citrated plasma processed within 1 h of venepuncture should be used. Serum is completely unsuitable. The presence of VEGF within platelets has implications for processes involving platelet and endothelial cell interactions. e.g. wound healing, and in tumour metastasis, when platelets adhering to circulating tumour cells may release VEGF at points of adhesion to endothelium, leading to hyperpermeability and extravasation of cells.

  19. Quality Assessment of Panax notoginseng from Different Regions through the Analysis of Marker Chemicals, Biological Potency and Ecological Factors

    PubMed Central

    Zhang, Ding-kun; Wang, Yan-hui; Li, Gang; Yan, Gui-lin; Cao, Li-juan; Xiao, Xiao-he; Huang, Lu-qi; Wang, Jia-bo

    2016-01-01

    Panax notoginseng (Burk.) F.H. Chen, called Sanqi in China, is a perennial herb that has been used as a medicinal herb in traditional Chinese medicine for more than 400 years. Because notoginseng is included in many proprietary Chinese medicines, the quality of notoginseng directly affects its efficacy and safety. However, considering the complex and special growth environment requirements of notoginseng, it is insufficient to evaluate its quality based solely on the analysis of marker chemicals. Thus, in this study, we tried to evaluate the quality of notoginseng with integrated indicators: (1) the concentration of five marker chemicals, notoginsenoside R1, ginsenoside Rg1, ginsenoside Re, ginsenoside Rb1 and ginsenoside Rd; (2) the anticoagulant activity (ACA); and (3) twenty-one ecological factors (e.g., longitude, latitude, elevation and soil data). Using these 27 parameters, notoginseng from different regions could be distinguished effectively, indicating a remarkable divergence of quality. A correlation analysis showed that variations of the ecological factors were closely associated with the saponins content and biopotency. For instance, the total nitrogen (TN), alkali hydrolysis nitrogen (AHN) and rapidly available potassium (RAPT) were significantly correlated with ACA, and RAPT was significantly correlated with the content of ginsenoside Rd and notoginsenoside R1. The results demonstrated that the high-quality notoginseng was produced from the emerging regions such as Kunming, Qujing and Honghe, which had higher ACA and saponin content than the notoginseng produced in traditional regions such as Wenshan and Baise. PMID:27723805

  20. Chronic disease, risk factors and disability in adults aged 50 and above living with and without HIV: findings from the Wellbeing of Older People Study in Uganda

    PubMed Central

    Mugisha, Joseph O.; Schatz, Enid J.; Randell, Madeleine; Kuteesa, Monica; Kowal, Paul; Negin, Joel; Seeley, Janet

    2016-01-01

    Background Data on the prevalence of chronic conditions, their risk factors, and their associations with disability in older people living with and without HIV are scarce in sub-Saharan Africa. Objectives In older people living with and without HIV in sub-Saharan Africa: 1) to describe the prevalence of chronic conditions and their risk factors and 2) to draw attention to associations between chronic conditions and disability. Methods Cross-sectional individual-level survey data from people aged 50 years and over living with and without HIV were analyzed from three study sites in Uganda. Diagnoses of chronic conditions were made through self-report, and disability was determined using the WHO Disability Assessment Schedule (WHODAS). We used ordered logistic regression and calculated predicted probabilities to show differences in the prevalence of multiple chronic conditions across HIV status, age groups, and locality. We used linear regression to determine associations between chronic conditions and the WHODAS. Results In total, 471 participants were surveyed; about half the respondents were living with HIV. The prevalence of chronic obstructive pulmonary disease and eye problems (except for those aged 60–69 years) was higher in the HIV-positive participants and increased with age. The prevalence of diabetes and angina was higher in HIV-negative participants. The odds of having one or more compared with no chronic conditions were higher in women (OR 1.6, 95% CI 1.1–2.3) and in those aged 70 years and above (OR 2.1, 95% CI 1.2–3.6). Sleep problems (coefficient 14.2, 95% CI 7.3–21.0) and depression (coefficient 9.4, 95% CI 1.2–17.0) were strongly associated with higher disability scores. Conclusion Chronic conditions are common in older adults and affect their functioning. Many of these conditions are not currently addressed by health services in Uganda. There is a need to revise health care policy and practice in Uganda to consider the health needs of

  1. New approach to optimize operational conditions for the biological treatment of a high-strength thiocyanate and ammonium waste: pH as key factor.

    PubMed

    Lay-Son, Meiling; Drakides, Christian

    2008-02-01

    Biological treatment of coke and steel-processing wastewaters has to satisfy both industrial economic needs and environmental protection regulations. Nevertheless, as some of the pollutants contained in these waters or produced during the treatment are highly toxic, an effective and safe treatment has proved to be difficult to obtain. This paper reports the study of a biological method for the treatment of wastewaters containing free cyanide, thiocyanate and ammonium (NH4). Laboratory-scale activated-sludge reactors were fed with a synthetic solution reproducing a steel-processing industrial wastewater and inoculated with the same industrial bacterial seeding used on-site (Ecosynergie Inc.). The results demonstrated that free cyanide and thiocyanate were efficiently degraded. Nevertheless, thiocyanate degradation and nitrification processes were actually inhibited by the free ammonia form (NH3) in place of the ionized NH4 form (NH4+) currently dosed and often unproperly named "ammonia" [IUPAC, 1997. In: McNaught, A.D., Wilkinson, A. (compilers). Compendium of Chemical Terminology. Royal Society of Chemistry, Cambridge, UK]. Optimum degradation rates were obtained for very narrow ranges of ammonia nitrogen (NH3-N) concentrations. This result can be explained by the role of pH, which mainly controls the NH3/NH4 equilibrium. Pollutants and NH3 concentrations influenced degradation rates of main pollutants. This influence was determined and expressed through elementary equations. Although the Michaelis-Menten equation could have been used to describe thiocyanate degradation, a Haldane-inhibition model was used to satisfactorily describe cyanide degradation. On the other hand, a slightly modified Haldane model was applied to describe both NH4 oxidation using NH3-N as substrate and thiocyanate degradation using NH3-N as inhibitor. These findings emphasize the role of pH on degradation rates and allow one to optimize operational conditions in the biological treatment of

  2. Acellular biological tissues containing inherent glycosaminoglycans for loading basic fibroblast growth factor promote angiogenesis and tissue regeneration.

    PubMed

    Lai, Po-Hong; Chang, Yen; Chen, Sung-Ching; Wang, Chung-Chi; Liang, Huang-Chien; Chang, Wei-Chun; Sung, Hsing-Wen

    2006-09-01

    It was found in our previous study that acellular tissues derived from bovine pericardia consist primarily of insoluble collagen, elastin, and tightly bound glycosaminoglycans (GAGs). It is speculated that the inherent GAGs in acellular tissues may serve as a reservoir for loading basic fibroblast growth factor (bFGF) and promote angiogenesis and tissue regeneration. This study was therefore designed to investigate effects of the content of GAGs in acellular bovine pericardia on the binding of bFGF and its release profile in vitro while its stimulation in angiogenesis and tissue regeneration in vivo were evaluated subcutaneously in a rat model. To control the content of GAGs, acellular tissues were treated additionally with hyaluronidase for 1 (Hase-D1), 3 (Hase-D3), or 5 days (Hase-D5). The in vitro results indicated that a higher content of GAGs in the acellular tissue resulted in an increase in bFGF binding and in a more gradual and sustained release of the growth factor. The in vivo results obtained at 1 week postoperatively showed that the density and the depth of neo-vessels infiltrated into the acellular tissue loaded with bFGF (acellular/bFGF) were significantly greater than the other test samples. At 1 month postoperatively, vascularized neo-connective tissues were found to fill the pores within each test sample, particularly for the acellular/bFGF tissue. These results suggested that the sustained release of bFGF from the acellular/ bFGF tissue continued to be effective in enhancing angiogenesis and generation of new tissues. In conclusion, the inherent GAGs present in acellular tissues may be used for binding and sustained release of bFGF to enhance angiogenesis and tissue regeneration.

  3. Effect of Erica sp. honey against microorganisms of clinical importance: study of the factors underlying this biological activity.

    PubMed

    Feás, Xesus; Iglesias, Antonio; Rodrigues, Sandra; Estevinho, Leticia M

    2013-04-11

    This study aimed to determine the factors (phenolic compounds, flavonoids, sugars or H2O2) that contribute the most to the antimicrobial activity of heather honey samples against four yeasts and four bacteria with medical importance. To discard the effect of H2O2 in the antimicrobial activity, catalase was added. To evaluate the osmotic pressure's effect, artificial honey was also used. Phenolic compounds and flavonoids were determined and Pearson's correlation analysis was performed to assess whether these correlated with antimicrobial activity. The amount of phenolic compounds ranged from 630.89 ± 5.21 GAE kg-1 to 718.92 ± 4.41 GAE kg-1, while the flavonoids varied between 450.72 ± 5.67 CAE kg-1 and 673.98 ± 4.33 CAE kg-1. For the bacteria, the minimum inhibitory concentration (MIC) of the honey without catalase ranged from 1.01 ± 0.50% to 10.00 ± 4.72% and was between 2.00 ± 0.94% and 13.27 ± 5.23% for honey with catalase. Concerning the yeasts, the MICs was between 13.16 ± 4.08% and 20.00 ± 5.09% for honey without catalase and between 14.95 ± 4.16% and 25.67 ± 5.50% for honey with catalase. The elucidation of the antimicrobial factors and action mechanisms is essential for the correct use of honey in therapeutic applications.

  4. Factors influencing choices for colorectal cancer screening among previously unscreened African and Caucasian Americans: findings from a triangulation mixed methods investigation.

    PubMed

    Ruffin, Mack T; Creswell, John W; Jimbo, Masahito; Fetters, Michael D

    2009-04-01

    We investigated factors that influence choice of colorectal cancer (CRC) screening test and assessed the most- and least-preferred options among fecal occult blood testing (FOBT), flexible sigmoidoscopy, colonoscopy, and double contrast barium enema among adults with varied race, gender, and geographic region demographics. Mixed methods data collection consisted of 10 focus group interviews and a survey of the 93 focus group participants. Participants were >or=50 years of age and reported not having been screened for colorectal cancer in the last ten years. Analyses examined differences by race, gender, and geographic location. Participants had modest knowledge about CRC and there were fewer correct answers to knowledge questions by African Americans. Participants recognized value of early detection, and identified health symptoms and their doctor's recommendation as influential for obtaining CRC screening. They chose colonoscopy and FOBT as the most preferred tests, while barium enema was least preferred. The analysis revealed intra-group variations in preference, though there were no significant differences by race, gender, or location. Openness of discussing this sensitive topic, lack of knowledge about colorectal cancer and screening costs, and diversity of preferences expressed within study groups suggest the importance of patient-physician dialogue about colorectal cancer screening options. New approaches to promoting colorectal cancer screening need to explore methods to facilitate patients establishing and expressing preferences among the screening options.

  5. Psychological factors predict adherence to methotrexate in rheumatoid arthritis; findings from a systematic review of rates, predictors and associations with patient-reported and clinical outcomes

    PubMed Central

    Bluett, James; Barton, Anne; Hyrich, Kimme L; Cordingley, Lis; Verstappen, Suzanne M M

    2016-01-01

    Treatment response to methotrexate (MTX) for rheumatoid arthritis (RA) is not universal and non-adherence may partially explain this. The aims of this systematic review were to: (1) summarise existing rates of adherence to MTX, (2) identify predictors of adherence to MTX, and (3) assess the association between non-adherence and patient outcomes. The authors conducted a systematic search of papers published from January 1980 to February 2015 in PubMed, PsycINFO, EMBASE and CINAHL databases. Studies were eligible for inclusion if: (1) MTX was used as monotherapy or in combination with other therapies, (2) MTX was used in an RA or inflammatory polyarthritis population, (3) adherence was defined and measured as the extent to which patients followed their MTX regimen during the period of prescription, and (4) it was an