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Sample records for fine-tuning molecular energy

  1. Researchers fine-tune production of energy crops

    SciTech Connect

    Parish, D.J. )

    1990-04-01

    Renewable energy sources, plant materials that can be processed into liquid fuels, are becoming increasingly important as fossil fuel sources dwindle and environmental impacts of releasing fossilized carbon into the atmosphere become more evident. But which plant species provide the most material and can be grown on land not used to produce food, feed, and fiber Switchgrass exceeds all other herbaceous species we have tested in production of biomass on marginal sites in the Virginia Piedmont reports David J. Parrish, Virginia Tech (Blacksburg, VA) professor of crop and soil environmental sciences. In a study sponsored by the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) at Virginia Tech, graduate student Steven Nagle, Parrish, professor Dale Wolf, and associate professor W.L. Daniels are comparing the biomass productivity of switchgrass, weeping lovegrass, and tall fescue. Since 1985, the crops - selected for their marginal crop value - have been grown on 12 sites in the Virginia Piedmont. Planting was done using no-till procedures that slice but do not turn the soil, because the sites are subject to erosion. The two warm-season grasses are harvested once a year, the fescue twice. Switchgrass has been the most productive on clay soils, and lovegrass on sandy soil. In a second DOE-sponsored study - this one by graduate student Preston Sullivan, Parish, Wolf, Daniels, and Nagle - the Virginia Tech researchers have begun to investigate planting winter-annual legumes in with switchgrass as a source of nitrogen to reduce cost of production, and as a means to increase biomass. In the fall of 1988, crimson clover, arrowleaf clover, and hairy vetch were planted into the switchgrass stubble. Other plots of switchgrass are being provided with various levels of nitrogen fertilizer to compare those yields with legume-planted plots. Crimson clover had provided the most fall growth, but by mid-May 1989, the hairy vetch had produced a dense webbing of biomass over the new switchgrass.

  2. Evident Improvement of Electrochemical Water Oxidation by Fine Tuning the Structure of Tetradentate N4 Ligands of Molecular Copper Catalysts.

    PubMed

    Shen, Junyu; Wang, Mei; Gao, Jinsuo; Han, Hongxian; Liu, Hong; Sun, Licheng

    2017-09-03

    Two copper complexes, [L1Cu(OH2)](BF4)2 [1, L1 = N,N'-dimethyl-N,N'-bis(pyridin-2-ylmethyl)-1,2-diaminoethane] and [L2Cu(OH2)](BF4)2 [2, L2 = 2,7-bis(2-pyridyl)-3,6-diaza-2,6-octadiene], were prepared as molecular water oxidation catalysts. Complex 1 displayed an overpotential (η) of 1.07 V at 1 mA cm-2 and an observed rate constant (kobs) of 13.5 s-1 at η 1.0 V in pH 9.0 phosphate buffer solution, while 2 exhibited a significantly smaller η (0.70 V) to reach 1 mA cm-2 and a higher kobs (50.4 s-1) than 1 under identical test conditions. Additionally, 2 displayed a better stability than 1 in controlled potential electrolysis experiments in a Faradaic efficiency of 94% for O2 evolution at 1.58 V, when a casing tube was used for Pt cathode. The possible mechanism for 1- and 2-catalyzed O2 evolution reactions is discussed based on the experimental evidence. These comparative results indicate that fine tuning structures of tetradentate N4 ligands can bring about significant change in the performance of copper complexes for electrochemical water oxidation. © 2017 WILEY-VCH Verlag GmbH & Co. KGaA, Weinheim.

  3. Perspective. Extremely fine tuning of doping enabled by combinatorial molecular-beam epitaxy

    DOE PAGES

    Wu, J.; Bozovic, I.

    2015-04-06

    Chemical doping provides an effective method to control the electric properties of complex oxides. However, the state-of-art accuracy in controlling doping is limited to about 1%. This hampers elucidation of the precise doping dependences of physical properties and phenomena of interest, such as quantum phase transitions. Using the combinatorial molecular beam epitaxy, we improve the accuracy in tuning the doping level by two orders of magnitude. We illustrate this novel method by two examples: a systematic investigation of the doping dependence of interface superconductivity, and a study of the competing ground states in the vicinity of the insulator-to-superconductor transition.

  4. Perspective: Extremely fine tuning of doping enabled by combinatorial molecular-beam epitaxy

    SciTech Connect

    Wu, J.; Božović, I.

    2015-06-01

    Chemical doping provides an effective method to control the electric properties of complex oxides. However, the state-of-art accuracy in controlling doping is limited to about 1%. This hampers elucidation of the precise doping dependences of physical properties and phenomena of interest, such as quantum phase transitions. Using the combinatorial molecular beam epitaxy, we improve the accuracy in tuning the doping level by two orders of magnitude. We illustrate this novel method by two examples: a systematic investigation of the doping dependence of interface superconductivity, and a study of the competing ground states in the vicinity of the insulator-to-superconductor transition.

  5. A family of enantiopure Fe(III)4 single molecule magnets: fine tuning of energy barrier by remote substituent.

    PubMed

    Zhu, Yuan-Yuan; Cui, Chang; Qian, Kang; Yin, Ji; Wang, Bing-Wu; Wang, Zhe-Ming; Gao, Song

    2014-08-21

    A new family of enantiopure star-shaped Fe(III)4 single-molecule magnets (SMMs) with the general formula [Fe4(L(K))6] (H2L = (R or S)-2-((2-hydroxy-1-phenylethylimino methyl)phenol); K = H (), Cl (), Br (), I (), and t-Bu ()), were structurally and magnetically characterized. Complex was reported in our previous paper (Chem. Commun., 2011, 47, 8049-8051). Detailed magnetic measurements and a systematic magneto-structural correlation study revealed that the SMM properties of this series of compounds can be finely tuned by the remote substituent of the ligands. Although the change in the coordination environment of the central Fe(3+) ions is very small, the properties of SMM behavior are changed considerably. All five complexes display frequency dependence of the ac susceptibility. However, the χ peaks of complexes and cannot be observed down to 0.5 K. The fitted anisotropy energy barriers (Ueff) of complexes , , and were 5.9, 7.1, and 11.0 K, respectively. Moreover, the hysteresis loops of these three complexes can be also observed around 0.5 K. Magneto-structural correlation analyses revealed that the coordination symmetry of the central Fe(3+) ion and the intermolecular interaction are two key factors affecting the SMM properties. Deviation to a trigonal prism coordination environment and the existence of intermolecular interactions between neighboring clusters may both reduce the anisotropy energy barriers.

  6. Fine tuning of optical transition energy of twisted bilayer graphene via interlayer distance modulation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    del Corro, Elena; Peña-Alvarez, Miriam; Sato, Kentaro; Morales-Garcia, Angel; Bousa, Milan; Mračko, Michal; Kolman, Radek; Pacakova, Barbara; Kavan, Ladislav; Kalbac, Martin; Frank, Otakar

    2017-02-01

    Twisted bilayer graphene (tBLG) represents a family of unique materials with optoelectronic properties tuned by the rotation angle between the two layers. The presented work shows an additional way of tweaking the electronic structure of tBLG by modifying the interlayer distance, for example by a small uniaxial out-of-plane compression. We have focused on the optical transition energy, which shows a clear dependence on the interlayer distance, both experimentally and theoretically.

  7. Fine-tuning terminal solvent ligands to rationally enhance the energy barrier in dinuclear dysprosium single-molecule magnets.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Kun; Yuan, Chen; Guo, Fu-Sheng; Zhang, Yi-Quan; Wang, Yao-Yu

    2016-12-20

    In search of simple approaches to rationally enhance the energy barriers in polynuclear dysprosium single-molecule magnets, a new system containing two structurally closely related dinuclear dysprosium complexes, namely [Dy2(L)2(DBM)2(DMF)2] (1) and [Dy2(L)2(DBM)2(DMA)2]·2DMA (2) (HDBM = dibenzoylmethane, H2L = 2-hydroxy-N'-(2-hydroxy-3-methoxybenzylidene)benzohydrazide), is introduced and the structure-dependent magnetic properties are investigated. The two complexes display only slight variations in the coordination geometries of the Dy(iii) ion but display remarkably different magnetic behaviors. By replacing the DMF (dimethylformamide) ligand in complex 1 with DMA (dimethylacetamide) in 2 while retaining the same coordination atoms, we were able to create a 3-fold enhancement in the energy barrier, from 24 K for complex 1 to 77 K for complex 2. Complete-active-space self-consistent field (CASSCF) calculations revealed that the charge distribution surrounding the Dy(iii) centers in 1 and 2 is the key factor in determining the relaxation properties of the SMMs. The introduction of an electron-donating CH3 group in DMA to replace the hydrogen in DMF resulted in a larger average charge along the magnetic axes of complex 2 compared to complex 1, which resulted in a stronger easy-axis ligand field, thus increasing the energy difference between the ground and the first excited states of complex 2. This work presents a simple method to rationally enhance the energy barrier in polynuclear lanthanide SMMs through fine-tuning of the electrostatic potential of the atoms along the magnetic axis.

  8. Design of Far-Red Sensitizing Squaraine Dyes Aiming Towards the Fine Tuning of Dye Molecular Structure.

    PubMed

    Morimoto, Takuya; Fujikawa, Naotaka; Ogomi, Yuhei; Pandey, Shyam S; Ma, Tingli; Hayase, Shuzi

    2016-04-01

    Model squaraine dyes having sharp and narrow absorptions mainly in the far-red wavelength region has been logically designed, synthesized and used for their application as sensitizer in the dyesensitized solar cells (DSSC). In order to have fine control on energetics, dyes having same mother core and alkyl chain length varying only in molecular symmetry and position of substituent were designed. It has been found that even keeping all other structural factor constant, only positional variation of substituent leads to not only in the variation of energetics by 0.1 eV but affects the photovoltaic characteristics also. Optimum concentration of dye de-aggregating agent was found to be 100 times with respect to the sensitizing dye concentration. Amongst dyes utilized in this work best performance was obtained for unsymmetrical dye SQ-40 giving a photoconversion efficiency of 4.01% under simulated solar irradiation at global AM 1.5.

  9. Revisiting fine-tuning in the MSSM

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ross, Graham G.; Schmidt-Hoberg, Kai; Staub, Florian

    2017-03-01

    We evaluate the amount of fine-tuning in constrained versions of the minimal supersymmetric standard model (MSSM), with different boundary conditions at the GUT scale. Specifically we study the fully constrained version as well as the cases of non-universal Higgs and gaugino masses. We allow for the presence of additional non-holomorphic soft-terms which we show further relax the fine-tuning. Of particular importance is the possibility of a Higgsino mass term and we discuss possible origins for such a term in UV complete models. We point out that loop corrections typically lead to a reduction in the fine-tuning by a factor of about two compared to the estimate at tree-level, which has been overlooked in many recent works. Taking these loop corrections into account, we discuss the impact of current limits from SUSY searches and dark matter on the fine-tuning. Contrary to common lore, we find that the MSSM fine-tuning can be as small as 10 while remaining consistent with all experimental constraints. If, in addition, the dark matter abundance is fully explained by the neutralino LSP, the fine-tuning can still be as low as ˜ 20 in the presence of additional non-holomorphic soft-terms. We also discuss future prospects of these models and find that the MSSM will remain natural even in the case of a non-discovery in the foreseeable future.

  10. Approaching {lambda} without fine-tuning

    SciTech Connect

    Matarrese, Sabino; Baccigalupi, Carlo; Perrotta, Francesca

    2004-09-15

    We address the fine-tuning problem of dark energy cosmologies which arises when the dark energy density needs to initially lie in a narrow range in order for its present value to be consistent with observations. As recently noticed, this problem becomes particularly severe in canonical quintessence scenarios, when trying to reproduce the behavior of a cosmological constant, i.e., when the dark energy equation of state w{sub Q} approaches -1: these models may be reconciled with a large basin of attraction only by requiring a rapid evolution of w{sub Q} at low redshifts, which is in conflict with the most recent estimates from type Ia Supernovae discovered by Hubble space telescope. Next, we focus on scalar-tensor theories of gravity, discussing the implications of a coupling between the quintessence scalar field and the Ricci scalar ('extended quintessence'). We show that, even if the equation of state today is very close to -1, by virtue of the scalar-tensor coupling the quintessence trajectories still possess the attractive feature which allows to reach the present level of cosmic acceleration starting by a set of initial conditions which covers tens of orders of magnitude; this effect, entirely of gravitational origin, represents a new important consequence of the possible coupling between dark energy and gravity. We illustrate this effect in typical extended quintessence scenarios.

  11. Fine tuning and MOND in a metamaterial "multiverse".

    PubMed

    Smolyaninov, Igor I; Smolyaninova, Vera N

    2017-08-14

    We consider the recently suggested model of a multiverse based on a ferrofluid. When the ferrofluid is subjected to a modest external magnetic field, the nanoparticles inside the ferrofluid form small hyperbolic metamaterial domains, which from the electromagnetic standpoint behave as individual "Minkowski universes" exhibiting different "laws of physics", such as different strength of effective gravity, different versions of modified Newtonian dynamics (MOND) and different radiation lifetimes. When the ferrofluid "multiverse" is populated with atomic or molecular species, and these species are excited using an external laser source, the radiation lifetimes of atoms and molecules in these "universes" depend strongly on the individual physical properties of each "universe" via the Purcell effect. Some "universes" are better fine-tuned than others to sustain the excited states of these species. Thus, the ferrofluid-based metamaterial "multiverse" may be used to study models of MOND and to illustrate the fine-tuning mechanism in cosmology.

  12. Understanding the Fine Tuning in Our Universe

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Cohen, Bernard L.

    2008-01-01

    It is often stated that the physical properties of our universe are "fine tuned"--that is, they must be almost exactly as they are to make the development of intelligent life possible. The implications of this statement, called the "anthropic principle," have been widely discussed in a philosophical context, but the scientific basis for the…

  13. Understanding the Fine Tuning in Our Universe

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Cohen, Bernard L.

    2008-01-01

    It is often stated that the physical properties of our universe are "fine tuned"--that is, they must be almost exactly as they are to make the development of intelligent life possible. The implications of this statement, called the "anthropic principle," have been widely discussed in a philosophical context, but the scientific basis for the…

  14. Fine-Tuning in a Design Experiment

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Ho, Foo Him; Toh, Pee Choon; Toh, Tin Lam

    2013-01-01

    Quek, Tay, Toh, Leong, and Dindyal (2011) proposed that a design-theory-practice troika should always be considered for a designed package to be acceptable to the research users who, in this case, are teachers and schools. This paper describes the fine-tuning to the MProSE problem-solving design made by the teachers in the school after first round…

  15. Fine-tuning in DBI inflationary mechanism

    SciTech Connect

    Chen, Xingang

    2008-12-15

    We show a model-independent fine-tuning issue in the DBI inflationary mechanism. DBI inflation requires a warp factor h small enough to sufficiently slow down the inflation. On the other hand, the Einstein equation in extra dimensions under the inflationary background deforms the warp space on the IR side. Generically these two locations coincide with each other, spoiling the DBI inflation. The origin and tuning of this 'h problem' is closely related, through the AdS/CFT duality, to those of the well-known '{eta} problem' in the slow-roll inflationary mechanism.

  16. Pre - big bang inflation requires fine tuning

    SciTech Connect

    Turner, Michael S.; Weinberg, Erick J.

    1997-10-01

    The pre-big-bang cosmology inspired by superstring theories has been suggested as an alternative to slow-roll inflation. We analyze, in both the Jordan and Einstein frames, the effect of spatial curvature on this scenario and show that too much curvature --- of either sign --- reduces the duration of the inflationary era to such an extent that the flatness and horizon problems are not solved. Hence, a fine-tuning of initial conditions is required to obtain enough inflation to solve the cosmological problems.

  17. Efficient Charge Transfer and Fine-Tuned Energy Level Alignment in a THF-Processed Fullerene-Free Organic Solar Cell with 11.3% Efficiency.

    PubMed

    Zheng, Zhong; Awartani, Omar M; Gautam, Bhoj; Liu, Delong; Qin, Yunpeng; Li, Wanning; Bataller, Alexander; Gundogdu, Kenan; Ade, Harald; Hou, Jianhui

    2017-02-01

    Fullerene-free organic solar cells show over 11% power conversion efficiency, processed by low toxic solvents. The applied donor and acceptor in the bulk heterojunction exhibit almost the same highest occupied molecular orbital level, yet exhibit very efficient charge creation. © 2016 WILEY-VCH Verlag GmbH & Co. KGaA, Weinheim.

  18. Low fine-tuning in Yukawa-deflected gauge mediation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ahmed, Waqas; Calibbi, Lorenzo; Li, Tianjun; Mustafayev, Azar; Raza, Shabbar

    2017-05-01

    We discuss a class of models with gauge-mediated supersymmetry-breaking characterized by a nonunified messenger sector inducing nonstandard gaugino mass ratios, as well as by additional contributions to the soft mass terms from a matter-messenger coupling. The well-known effect of this coupling is to generate A-terms at one-loop level, hence raising the Higgs mass without relying on superheavy stops. At the same time, a hierarchy between Wino and gluino masses, as induced by the nonunified messenger fields, can greatly lower the radiative corrections to the Higgs soft mass term driven by the high-energy parameters, thus reducing the fine-tuning. We search for models with low fine-tuning within this scenario, and we discuss the spectrum, collider phenomenology, constraints, and prospects of the found solutions. We find that some setups are accessible or already excluded by searches at the Large Hadron Collider, and all our scenarios with a tuning better than about 2% can be tested at the International Linear Collider.

  19. Nonsingular multidimensional cosmologies without fine tuning

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bronnikov, Kirill A.; Fabris, Julio C.

    2002-09-01

    Exact cosmological solutions for effective actions in D dimensions inspired by the tree-level superstring action are studied. For a certain range of free parameters existing in the model, nonsingular bouncing solutions are found. Among them, of particular interest can be open hyperbolic models, in which, without any fine tuning, the internal scale factor and the dilaton field (connected with string coupling in string theories) tend to constant values at late times. A cosmological singularity is avoided due to nonminimal dilaton-gravity coupling and, for D>11, due to pure imaginary nature of the dilaton, which conforms to currently discussed unification models. The existence of such and similar solutions supports the opinion that the Universe had never undergone a stage driven by full-scale quantum gravity.

  20. Fine tuning of cytosolic Ca 2+ oscillations

    PubMed Central

    Dupont, Geneviève; Combettes, Laurent

    2016-01-01

    Ca 2+ oscillations, a widespread mode of cell signaling, were reported in non-excitable cells for the first time more than 25 years ago. Their fundamental mechanism, based on the periodic Ca 2+ exchange between the endoplasmic reticulum and the cytoplasm, has been well characterized. However, how the kinetics of cytosolic Ca 2+ changes are related to the extent of a physiological response remains poorly understood. Here, we review data suggesting that the downstream targets of Ca 2+ are controlled not only by the frequency of Ca 2+ oscillations but also by the detailed characteristics of the oscillations, such as their duration, shape, or baseline level. Involvement of non-endoplasmic reticulum Ca 2+ stores, mainly mitochondria and the extracellular medium, participates in this fine tuning of Ca 2+ oscillations. The main characteristics of the Ca 2+ exchange fluxes with these compartments are also reviewed. PMID:27630768

  1. A cyclic universe approach to fine tuning

    DOE PAGES

    Alexander, Stephon; Cormack, Sam; Gleiser, Marcelo

    2016-04-05

    We present a closed bouncing universe model where the value of coupling constants is set by the dynamics of a ghost-like dilatonic scalar field. We show that adding a periodic potential for the scalar field leads to a cyclic Friedmann universe where the values of the couplings vary randomly from one cycle to the next. While the shuffling of values for the couplings happens during the bounce, within each cycle their time-dependence remains safely within present observational bounds for physically-motivated values of the model parameters. Our model presents an alternative to solutions of the fine tuning problem based on stringmore » landscape scenarios. (C) 2016 The Authors. Published by Elsevier B.V. This is an open access article under the CC BY license (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/). Funded by SCOAP(3).« less

  2. Relaxion cosmology and the price of fine-tuning

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Di Chiara, Stefano; Kannike, Kristjan; Marzola, Luca; Racioppi, Antonio; Raidal, Martti; Spethmann, Christian

    2016-05-01

    The relaxion scenario presents an intriguing extension of the standard model in which the particle introduced to solve to the strong C P problem, the axion, also achieves the dynamical relaxation of the Higgs boson mass term. In this work we complete this framework by proposing a scenario of inflationary cosmology that is consistent with all the observational constraints: the relaxion hybrid inflation with an asymmetric waterfall. In our scheme, the vacuum energy of the inflaton drives inflation in a natural way while the relaxion slow rolls. The constraints on the present inflationary observables are then matched through a subsequent inflationary epoch driven by the inflaton. We quantify the amount of fine-tuning of the proposed inflation scenario, concluding that the inflaton sector severely decreases the naturalness of the theory.

  3. Fine-tuning challenges for the matter bounce scenario

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Levy, Aaron M.

    2017-01-01

    A bouncing universe with a long period of contraction during which the average density is pressureless (the same equation of state as matter) as cosmologically observable scales exit the Hubble horizon has been proposed as an explanation for producing a nearly scale-invariant spectrum of adiabatic scalar perturbations. A well-known problem with this scenario is that, unless suppressed, the energy density associated with anisotropy grows to dominate that of the pressureless matter, so the matter-like phase is unstable. Previous models introduced an ekpyrotic phase after the matter-like phase to prevent the anisotropy from generating chaotic mixmaster behavior. In this work, though, we point out that, unless the anisotropy is suppressed first, the matter-like phase will never start and that suppressing the anisotropy requires extraordinary, exponential fine-tuning.

  4. Fine tuning of activity for nanoscale catalysts.

    SciTech Connect

    Strmcnik, D.; van derVliet, D.; Lucas, C.; Karapetrov, G.; Markovic, N.; Stamenkovic, V.; Materials Science Division

    2008-01-01

    similar levels of catalytic enhancement have been established for corresponding nanoscale materials. In addition to electronic properties we have found how catalytic activity could be affected by the arrangement of surface defects on nanoscale surfaces. Ability to control surface and near surface catalyst properties enables fine tuning of catalytic activity and stability of nanoscale surfaces.

  5. The fine tuning of carotenoid-chlorophyll interactions in light-harvesting complexes: an important requisite to guarantee efficient photoprotection via triplet-triplet energy transfer in the complex balance of the energy transfer processes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Di Valentin, Marilena; Carbonera, Donatella

    2017-08-01

    Triplet-triplet energy transfer (TTET) from the chlorophyll to the carotenoid triplet state is the process exploited by photosynthetic systems to protect themselves from singlet oxygen formation under light-stress conditions. A deep comprehension of the molecular strategies adopted to guarantee TTET efficiency, while at the same time maintaining minimal energy loss and efficient light-harvesting capability, is still lacking. The paramagnetic nature of the triplet state makes electron paramagnetic resonance (EPR) the method of choice when investigating TTET. In this review, we focus on our extended comparative study of two photosynthetic antenna complexes, the Peridinin-chlorophyll a-protein of dinoflagellates and the light-harvesting complex II of higher plants, in order to point out important aspects of the molecular design adopted in the photoprotection strategy. We have demonstrated that a proper analysis of the EPR data allows one to identify the pigments involved in TTET and, consequently, gain an insight into the structure of the photoprotective sites. The structural information has been complemented by a detailed description of the electronic structure provided by hyperfine spectroscopy. All these elements represent the fundamental building blocks toward a deeper understanding of the requirements for efficient photoprotection, which is fundamental to guarantee the prolonged energy conversion action of photosynthesis.

  6. P2 receptor web: complexity and fine-tuning.

    PubMed

    Volonté, Cinzia; Amadio, Susanna; D'Ambrosi, Nadia; Colpi, Monica; Burnstock, Geoffrey

    2006-10-01

    The present review offers a new perspective on a family of receptors, termed P2 receptors, specific for nucleoside tri- and diphosphates of purines/pyrimidines. We emphasize here that while decoding the inputs of various related extracellular ligands, P2 receptors are a clear example of increasing biological complexity. They are represented by 7 ionotropic P2X and 8 metabotropic P2Y receptors; they have very heterogeneous ligands and binding characteristics, molecular properties, transduction mechanisms, cellular localization and protein-protein interactions. While the reason for this sophistication is unknown, a few compelling issues emerge while looking at such a rich variety. We ask, for instance, why so many different receptor subtypes are necessary for triggering biological properties and functions, and if these receptors are more than the sum of their single entities. A first possibility is that newly synthesized P2 proteins are casually located on the cell surface (stochastic hypothesis). Alternatively, distinct subunits are engaged on different cell phenotypes by genetic control (genetic determinism) and/or selective recruitment under physiopathological conditions and epigenetic stimuli (epigenetic determinism). Nevertheless, an appropriate way to both dissect the vast biological scenario and molecular complexity among P2 receptors and to integrate and upgrade their assortment is to regard them as a "combinatorial receptor web", that is, a dynamic architecture of P2 proteins demonstrating economic efficiency and involving a process of "fine-tuning", a mechanism which endorses the dynamic nature of all biological reactions. In the present analysis, we stimulate a scientific query about what contributes to such a vast P2 receptor sophistication.

  7. The Doctoral Comprehensive Examination: Fine-Tuning the Process.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Loughead, Teri Olisky

    1997-01-01

    Uses Bloom's Taxonomy of Educational Objectives to fine-tune the process of designing, preparing for, evaluating, and providing feedback about the doctoral comprehensive examination. Examines the purpose and objectives of comprehensive examinations, curriculum design, preparation for the exam, test item development, evaluation criteria, and…

  8. Dark interactions and cosmological fine-tuning

    SciTech Connect

    Quartin, Miguel; Calvao, Mauricio O; Joras, Sergio E; Reis, Ribamar R R; Waga, Ioav E-mail: orca@if.ufrj.br E-mail: ribamar@if.ufrj.br

    2008-05-15

    Cosmological models involving an interaction between dark matter and dark energy have been proposed in order to solve the so-called coincidence problem. Different forms of coupling have been studied, but there have been claims that observational data seem to narrow (some of) them down to something annoyingly close to the {Lambda}CDM (CDM: cold dark matter) model, thus greatly reducing their ability to deal with the problem in the first place. The smallness problem of the initial energy density of dark energy has also been a target of cosmological models in recent years. Making use of a moderately general coupling scheme, this paper aims to unite these different approaches and shed some light on whether this class of models has any true perspective in suppressing the aforementioned issues that plague our current understanding of the universe, in a quantitative and unambiguous way.

  9. Why Cosmic Fine-Tuning Needs to BE Explained

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Manson, Neil Alan

    Discoveries in modern physics and Big Bang cosmology indicate that if either the initial conditions of the universe or the physical laws governing its development had differed even slightly, life could never have developed. It is for this reason that the universe is said to be ``fine-tuned'' for life. I argue that cosmic fine-tuning, which some want to dismiss as the way things just happen to be, in fact needs to be explained. In Chapter One I provide an overview of the evidence that the universe is fine-tuned for life. In Chapter Two I present a set of sufficient conditions for a fact's needing to be explained. The conditions are that the fact is improbable and that a ``tidy'' explanation of it is available. A tidy explanation of a fact is considerably less improbable than that fact and makes the obtaining of that fact considerably less improbable. Chapters Three, Four, and Five are devoted to showing that cosmic Chapter Three I argue that the universe's being finely tuned for life can meaningfully be considered improbable. In Chapter Four I claim that there is at least one tidy explanation of cosmic fine-tuning: that the universe was created by some sort of extramundane designer. In Chapters Four and Five I respond to three objections. The first is that the design hypothesis is ad hoc. The second is that we have no reason to believe a supernatural designer would prefer life-permitting cosmoi to other possible cosmoi and that our tendency to believe otherwise is the result of anthropocentrism. The third is that the design hypothesis never buys us an explanatory advantage.

  10. The Fine-Tuning of the Universe for Intelligent Life

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Barnes, L. A.

    2012-06-01

    The fine-tuning of the universe for intelligent life has received a great deal of attention in recent years, both in the philosophical and scientific literature. The claim is that in the space of possible physical laws, parameters and initial conditions, the set that permits the evolution of intelligent life is very small. I present here a review of the scientific literature, outlining cases of fine-tuning in the classic works of Carter, Carr and Rees, and Barrow and Tipler, as well as more recent work. To sharpen the discussion, the role of the antagonist will be played by Victor Stenger's recent book The Fallacy of Fine-Tuning: Why the Universe is Not Designed for Us. Stenger claims that all known fine-tuning cases can be explained without the need for a multiverse. Many of Stenger's claims will be found to be highly problematic. We will touch on such issues as the logical necessity of the laws of nature; objectivity, invariance and symmetry; theoretical physics and possible universes; entropy in cosmology; cosmic inflation and initial conditions; galaxy formation; the cosmological constant; stars and their formation; the properties of elementary particles and their effect on chemistry and the macroscopic world; the origin of mass; grand unified theories; and the dimensionality of space and time. I also provide an assessment of the multiverse, noting the significant challenges that it must face. I do not attempt to defend any conclusion based on the fine-tuning of the universe for intelligent life. This paper can be viewed as a critique of Stenger's book, or read independently.

  11. Microglia and synapse interactions: fine tuning neural circuits and candidate molecules

    PubMed Central

    Miyamoto, Akiko; Wake, Hiroaki; Moorhouse, Andrew J.; Nabekura, Junichi

    2013-01-01

    Brain function depends critically on the interactions among the underlying components that comprise neural circuits. This includes coordinated activity in pre-synaptic and postsynaptic neuronal elements, but also in the non-neuronal elements such as glial cells. Microglia are glial cells in the central nervous system (CNS) that have well-known roles in neuronal immune function, responding to infections and brain injury and influencing the progress of neurodegenerative disorders. However, microglia are also surveyors of the healthy brain, continuously extending and retracting their processes and making contacts with pre- and postsynaptic elements of neural circuits, a process that clearly consumes considerable energy. Pruning of synapses during development and in response to injury has also been documented, and we propose that this extensive surveillance of the brain parenchyma in adult healthy brain results in similar “fine-tuning” of neural circuits. A reasonable extension is that a dysfunction of such a homeostatic role of microglia could be a primary cause of neuronal disease. Indeed, neuronal functions including cognition, personality, and information processing are affected by immune status. In this review we focus on the interactions between microglia and synapses, the possible cellular and molecular mechanisms that mediate such contacts, and the possible implications these interactions may have in the fine tuning of neural circuits that is so important for physiological brain function. PMID:23720611

  12. Metabolomic profiling reveals a finely tuned, starvation-induced metabolic switch in Trypanosoma cruzi epimastigotes.

    PubMed

    Barisón, María Julia; Rapado, Ludmila Nakamura; Merino, Emilio F; Furusho Pral, Elizabeth Mieko; Mantilla, Brian Suarez; Marchese, Letícia; Nowicki, Cristina; Silber, Ariel Mariano; Cassera, Maria Belen

    2017-05-26

    Trypanosoma cruzi, the etiological agent of Chagas disease, is a protozoan parasite with a complex life cycle involving a triatomine insect and mammals. Throughout its life cycle, the T. cruzi parasite faces several alternating events of cell division and cell differentiation in which exponential and stationary growth phases play key biological roles. It is well accepted that arrest of the cell division in the epimastigote stage, both in the midgut of the triatomine insect and in vitro, is required for metacyclogenesis, and it has been previously shown that the parasites change the expression profile of several proteins when entering this quiescent stage. However, little is known about the metabolic changes that epimastigotes undergo before they develop into the metacyclic trypomastigote stage. We applied targeted metabolomics to measure the metabolic intermediates in the most relevant pathways for energy metabolism and oxidative imbalance in exponentially growing and stationary growth-arrested epimastigote parasites. We show for the first time that T. cruzi epimastigotes transitioning from the exponential to the stationary phase exhibit a finely tuned adaptive metabolic mechanism that enables switching from glucose to amino acid consumption, which is more abundant in the stationary phase. This metabolic plasticity appears to be crucial for survival of the T. cruzi parasite in the myriad different environmental conditions to which it is exposed during its life cycle. © 2017 by The American Society for Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, Inc.

  13. Stop search with acceptable fine-tuning in Susy models

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ćiçi, Ali; Ün, Cem Salih; Kirca, Zerrin

    2017-02-01

    Supersymmetry (SUSY) is one of the forefront candidates for the models beyond the Standard Model (SM) in resolving the gauge hierarchy problem by proposing new supersymmetric partners for the SM fields. In SUSY, stop, the supersymmetric partner of top quark, is of a special importance, since it cancels the largest quadratic contributions to the Higgs boson mass from top quark loop. Despite heavy stop mass requirement from the Higgs boson searches and fine-tuning demands, it is still possible to find stops of mass about a few hundred GeV, even as light as top quark. In this study, we search for light stop solutions within the SUSY Grand Unified Theory (GUT) models in light of acceptable fine-tuning and current experimental constraints. Afterwards, we analyze the possible signals through which the implications can be tested at the Large Hadron Collider (LHC) experiments.

  14. Cosmologically Safe QCD Axion without Fine-Tuning

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yamada, Masaki; Yanagida, Tsutomu T.; Yonekura, Kazuya

    2016-02-01

    Although QCD axion models are widely studied as solutions to the strong C P problem, they generically confront severe fine-tuning problems to guarantee the anomalous Peccei-Quinn (PQ) symmetry. In this Letter, we propose a simple QCD axion model without any fine-tunings. We introduce an extra dimension and a pair of extra quarks living on two branes separately, which is also charged under a bulk Abelian gauge symmetry. We assume a monopole condensation on our brane at an intermediate scale, which implies that the extra quarks develop chiral symmetry breaking and the PQ symmetry is broken. In contrast to Kim's original model, our model explains the origin of the PQ symmetry thanks to the extra dimension and avoids the cosmological domain wall problem because of chiral symmetry breaking in Abelian gauge theory.

  15. Cosmologically Safe QCD Axion without Fine-Tuning.

    PubMed

    Yamada, Masaki; Yanagida, Tsutomu T; Yonekura, Kazuya

    2016-02-05

    Although QCD axion models are widely studied as solutions to the strong CP problem, they generically confront severe fine-tuning problems to guarantee the anomalous Peccei-Quinn (PQ) symmetry. In this Letter, we propose a simple QCD axion model without any fine-tunings. We introduce an extra dimension and a pair of extra quarks living on two branes separately, which is also charged under a bulk Abelian gauge symmetry. We assume a monopole condensation on our brane at an intermediate scale, which implies that the extra quarks develop chiral symmetry breaking and the PQ symmetry is broken. In contrast to Kim's original model, our model explains the origin of the PQ symmetry thanks to the extra dimension and avoids the cosmological domain wall problem because of chiral symmetry breaking in Abelian gauge theory.

  16. Towards understanding fine-tuning in fundamental physics

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Larsen, Grant Edward

    The standard models of particle physics and cosmology are enjoying wild success, but are beset by surprising features. Chief among these are the mysterious smallness of general relativity's cosmological constant (known as the cosmological constant "problem"), and the mysteriously tremendous strength of all other forces relative to gravity (known as the hierarchy "problem"). Both are instances of a physically relevant quantity that (due to quantum effects) is a sum of many (unknown) quantities; in both cases, these summands seem to cancel out to remarkable precision to give a much smaller sum, a phenomenon called fine-tuning. The size of the cosmological constant has proved robust against explanation on the grounds of physical principles like symmetry. Such explanations of the electroweak/gravity hierarchy abound, but recent experimental efforts have ruled many of them out, or forced them to introduce new fine-tuning. In both cases, arguments about selection effects and priors have emerged. Here, a dialectic approach is taken to understanding this apparent fine-tuning in nature: First, symmetry is employed. Supersymmetry famously resolves the hierarchy problem, but is under siege by increasing experimental constraints ruling out much of its natural parameter space. A class of supersymmetry models with supersymmetry broken at a low scale is proposed which evade experimental constraints without needing fine-tuning. The key ingredient is some anti-correlation between supersymmetry-breaking effects and electroweak-breaking effects on a field, e.g. if the symmetry-breaking fields are localized at different points along an extra dimension. Then, a careful argument employing selection effects and Bayesian reasoning is undertaken to show that the size of the cosmological constant is not surprising. Previous such arguments have suggested many different probability measures on the space of different possibilities, but a careful review of quantum mechanics shows a unique

  17. Adiponectin fine-tuning of liver regeneration dynamics revealed through cellular network modeling.

    PubMed

    Correnti, Jason M; Cook, Daniel; Aksamitiene, Edita; Swarup, Aditi; Ogunnaike, Babatunde; Vadigepalli, Rajanikanth; Hoek, Jan B

    2014-11-10

    Following partial hepatectomy, the liver initiates a regenerative program involving hepatocyte priming and replication driven by coordinated cytokine and growth factor actions. We investigated the mechanisms underlying Adiponectin's (Adn) regulation of liver regeneration through modulation of these mediators. Adn-/- mice showed delayed onset of hepatocyte replication, but accelerated cell cycle progression relative to wild-type mice, suggesting Adn has multiple effects fine-tuning the kinetics of liver regeneration. We developed a computational model describing the molecular and physiological kinetics of liver regeneration in Adn-/- mice. We employed this computational model to evaluate the underlying regulatory mechanisms. Our analysis predicted that Adn is required for an efficient early cytokine response to partial hepatectomy, but is inhibitory to later growth factor actions. Consistent with this prediction, Adn knockout reduced hepatocyte responses to IL-6 during the priming phase, but enhanced growth factor levels through peak hepatocyte replication. By contrast, supraphysiological concentrations of Adn resulting from rosiglitazone treatment suppressed regeneration by reducing growth factor levels during S phase, consistent with computational predictions. Together, these results revealed that Adn fine-tunes the progression of liver regeneration through dynamically modulating molecular mediator networks and cellular interactions within the liver. This article is protected by copyright. All rights reserved.

  18. Adiponectin fine-tuning of liver regeneration dynamics revealed through cellular network modelling.

    PubMed

    Correnti, Jason M; Cook, Daniel; Aksamitiene, Edita; Swarup, Aditi; Ogunnaike, Babatunde; Vadigepalli, Rajanikanth; Hoek, Jan B

    2015-01-15

    Following partial hepatectomy, the liver initiates a regenerative programme involving hepatocyte priming and replication driven by the coordinated actions of cytokine and growth factors. We investigated the mechanisms underlying adiponectin's (Adn) regulation of liver regeneration through modulation of these mediators. Adn(-/-) mice showed delayed onset of hepatocyte replication, but accelerated cell cycle progression relative to wild-type mice, suggesting Adn has multiple effects fine-tuning the kinetics of liver regeneration. We developed a computational model describing the molecular and physiological kinetics of liver regeneration in Adn(-/-) mice. We employed this computational model to evaluate the underlying regulatory mechanisms. Our analysis predicted that Adn is required for an efficient early cytokine response to partial hepatectomy, but is inhibitory to later growth factor actions. Consistent with this prediction, Adn knockout reduced hepatocyte responses to interleukin-6 during the priming phase, but enhanced growth factor levels through peak hepatocyte replication. By contrast, supraphysiological concentrations of Adn resulting from rosiglitazone treatment suppressed regeneration by reducing growth factor levels during S phase, consistent with computational predictions. Together, these results revealed that Adn fine-tunes the progression of liver regeneration through dynamically modulating molecular mediator networks and cellular interactions within the liver.

  19. Modern Cosmology and Anthropic Fine-Tuning: Three approaches

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Collins, Robin

    The anthropic fine-tuning of the cosmos refers to the claim that the laws of nature, the constants of physics, and the initial conditions of the universe must be set to an enormous degree of precision for embodied conscious agents to exist. Three major responses have been offered to this fine-tuning: the multiverse explanation; theism; and the claim that it is just a brute fact that requires no further explanation. In this chapter, I will consider each explanation in turn, and provide some novel arguments for the superiority of a theistic or related explanation. In the last section, I will show how whether or not one adopts a theistic or related explanation can significantly influence what features of the universe one considers in need of further scientific explanation, and the type of scientific explanation that one should find satisfactory. In particular, I will argue that in some cases atheism, not theism, serves as a science stopper in discouraging a search for deeper scientific explanations of phenomena.

  20. Hearing aid fine-tuning based on Dutch descriptions.

    PubMed

    Thielemans, Thijs; Pans, Donné; Chenault, Michelene; Anteunis, Lucien

    2017-07-01

    The aim of this study was to derive an independent fitting assistant based on expert consensus. Two questions were asked: (1) what (Dutch) terms do hearing impaired listeners use nowadays to describe their specific hearing aid fitting problems? (2) What is the expert consensus on how to resolve these complaints by adjusting hearing aid parameters? Hearing aid dispensers provided descriptors that impaired listeners use to describe their reactions to specific hearing aid fitting problems. Hearing aid fitting experts were asked "How would you adjust the hearing aid if its user reports that the aid sounds…?" with the blank filled with each of the 40 most frequently mentioned descriptors. 112 hearing aid dispensers and 15 hearing aid experts. The expert solution with the highest weight value was considered the best solution for that descriptor. Principal component analysis (PCA) was performed to identify a factor structure in fitting problems. Nine fitting problems could be identified resulting in an expert-based, hearing aid manufacturer independent, fine-tuning fitting assistant for clinical use. The construction of an expert-based, hearing aid manufacturer independent, fine-tuning fitting assistant to be used as an additional tool in the iterative fitting process is feasible.

  1. An intramolecular disulfide bond designed in myoglobin fine-tunes both protein structure and peroxidase activity.

    PubMed

    Wu, Lei-Bin; Yuan, Hong; Zhou, Hu; Gao, Shu-Qin; Nie, Chang-Ming; Tan, Xiangshi; Wen, Ge-Bo; Lin, Ying-Wu

    2016-06-15

    Disulfide bond plays crucial roles in stabilization of protein structure and in fine-tuning protein functions. To explore an approach for rational heme protein design, we herein rationally introduced a pair of cysteines (F46C/M55C) into the scaffold of myoglobin (Mb), mimicking those in native neuroglobin. Molecular modeling suggested that it is possible for Cys46 and Cys55 to form an intramolecular disulfide bond, which was confirmed experimentally by ESI-MS analysis, DTNB reaction and CD spectrum. Moreover, it was shown that the spontaneously formed disulfide bond of Cys46-Cys55 fine-tunes not only the heme active site structure, but also the protein functions. The substitution of Phe46 with Ser46 in F46S Mb destabilizes the protein while facilitates H2O2 activation. Remarkably, the formation of an intramolecular disulfide bond of Cys46-Cys55 in F46C/M55C Mb improves the protein stability and regulates the heme site to be more favorable for substrate binding, resulting in enhanced peroxidase activity. This study provides valuable information of structure-function relationship for heme proteins regulated by an intramolecular disulfide bond, and also suggests that construction of such a covalent bond is useful for design of functional heme proteins. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  2. Fine-tuning tomato agronomic properties by computational genome redesign.

    PubMed

    Carrera, Javier; Fernández Del Carmen, Asun; Fernández-Muñoz, Rafael; Rambla, Jose Luis; Pons, Clara; Jaramillo, Alfonso; Elena, Santiago F; Granell, Antonio

    2012-01-01

    Considering cells as biofactories, we aimed to optimize its internal processes by using the same engineering principles that large industries are implementing nowadays: lean manufacturing. We have applied reverse engineering computational methods to transcriptomic, metabolomic and phenomic data obtained from a collection of tomato recombinant inbreed lines to formulate a kinetic and constraint-based model that efficiently describes the cellular metabolism from expression of a minimal core of genes. Based on predicted metabolic profiles, a close association with agronomic and organoleptic properties of the ripe fruit was revealed with high statistical confidence. Inspired in a synthetic biology approach, the model was used for exploring the landscape of all possible local transcriptional changes with the aim of engineering tomato fruits with fine-tuned biotechnological properties. The method was validated by the ability of the proposed genomes, engineered for modified desired agronomic traits, to recapitulate experimental correlations between associated metabolites.

  3. Fine-Tuning Tomato Agronomic Properties by Computational Genome Redesign

    PubMed Central

    Carrera, Javier; Fernández del Carmen, Asun; Fernández-Muñoz, Rafael; Rambla, Jose Luis; Pons, Clara; Jaramillo, Alfonso; Elena, Santiago F.; Granell, Antonio

    2012-01-01

    Considering cells as biofactories, we aimed to optimize its internal processes by using the same engineering principles that large industries are implementing nowadays: lean manufacturing. We have applied reverse engineering computational methods to transcriptomic, metabolomic and phenomic data obtained from a collection of tomato recombinant inbreed lines to formulate a kinetic and constraint-based model that efficiently describes the cellular metabolism from expression of a minimal core of genes. Based on predicted metabolic profiles, a close association with agronomic and organoleptic properties of the ripe fruit was revealed with high statistical confidence. Inspired in a synthetic biology approach, the model was used for exploring the landscape of all possible local transcriptional changes with the aim of engineering tomato fruits with fine-tuned biotechnological properties. The method was validated by the ability of the proposed genomes, engineered for modified desired agronomic traits, to recapitulate experimental correlations between associated metabolites. PMID:22685389

  4. Myosin phosphatase Fine-tunes Zebrafish Motoneuron Position during Axonogenesis

    PubMed Central

    Granato, Michael

    2016-01-01

    During embryogenesis the spinal cord shifts position along the anterior-posterior axis relative to adjacent tissues. How motor neurons whose cell bodies are located in the spinal cord while their axons reside in adjacent tissues compensate for such tissue shift is not well understood. Using live cell imaging in zebrafish, we show that as motor axons exit from the spinal cord and extend through extracellular matrix produced by adjacent notochord cells, these cells shift several cell diameters caudally. Despite this pronounced shift, individual motoneuron cell bodies stay aligned with their extending axons. We find that this alignment requires myosin phosphatase activity within motoneurons, and that mutations in the myosin phosphatase subunit mypt1 increase myosin phosphorylation causing a displacement between motoneuron cell bodies and their axons. Thus, we demonstrate that spinal motoneurons fine-tune their position during axonogenesis and we identify the myosin II regulatory network as a key regulator. PMID:27855159

  5. Fine-tuning Structures from Molecules to Nanophases: Insight into the Origin of Superior Organic Photovoltaic Efficiency

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chen, Wei; Darling, Seth

    2012-02-01

    Organic photovoltaics (OPV) represent one of the most promising technologies for next-generation solar energy conversion due to their low-cost and scalability. To realize this potential, efficiencies must be improved for which a deeper understanding of the nanoscale morphology and molecular organization is required. Using the state-of-the-art PTB series of conjugated copolymers synthesized at the University of Chicago, we probed the internal structure of these materials both in solution and in films containing polymer/fullerene blends using a suite of tools spearheaded by neutron and x-ray scattering and, thereby, conceive the structural evolution from solution to thin films. Fine-tuning molecular structures via selective atomic replacement on the main chain of PTB copolymers, we gained unique insights into the structure-performance relationships, especially key features such as intermixing of polymers with fullerenes. Progress established in the course of these structural and morphological characterizations outline above will serve as the foundation for further improving the efficiency of polymer solar cells to realize their large-scale commercial use.

  6. viral silencing suppressors: Tools forged to fine-tune host-pathogen coexistence.

    PubMed

    Csorba, Tibor; Kontra, Levente; Burgyán, József

    2015-05-01

    RNA silencing is a homology-dependent gene inactivation mechanism that regulates a wide range of biological processes including antiviral defense. To deal with host antiviral responses viruses evolved mechanisms to avoid or counteract this, most notably through expression of viral suppressors of RNA silencing. Besides working as silencing suppressors, these proteins may also fulfill other functions during infection. In many cases the interplay between the suppressor function and other "unrelated" functions remains elusive. We will present host factors implicated in antiviral pathways and summarize the current status of knowledge about the diverse viral suppressors' strategies acting at various steps of antiviral silencing in plants. Besides, we will consider the multi-functionality of these versatile proteins and related biochemical processes in which they may be involved in fine-tuning the plant-virus interaction. Finally, we will present the current applications and discuss perspectives of the use of these proteins in molecular biology and biotechnology.

  7. Dosage compensation in Drosophila melanogaster: epigenetic fine-tuning of chromosome-wide transcription.

    PubMed

    Conrad, Thomas; Akhtar, Asifa

    2012-01-18

    Dosage compensation is an epigenetic mechanism that normalizes gene expression from unequal copy numbers of sex chromosomes. Different organisms have evolved alternative molecular solutions to this task. In Drosophila melanogaster, transcription of the single male X chromosome is upregulated by twofold in a process orchestrated by the dosage compensation complex. Despite this conceptual simplicity, dosage compensation involves multiple coordinated steps to recognize and activate the entire X chromosome. We are only beginning to understand the intriguing interplay between multiple levels of local and long-range chromatin regulation required for the fine-tuned transcriptional activation of a heterogeneous gene population. This Review highlights the known facts and open questions of dosage compensation in D. melanogaster.

  8. Pentagone internalises glypicans to fine-tune multiple signalling pathways

    PubMed Central

    Norman, Mark; Vuilleumier, Robin; Springhorn, Alexander; Gawlik, Jennifer; Pyrowolakis, George

    2016-01-01

    Tight regulation of signalling activity is crucial for proper tissue patterning and growth. Here we investigate the function of Pentagone (Pent), a secreted protein that acts in a regulatory feedback during establishment and maintenance of BMP/Dpp morphogen signalling during Drosophila wing development. We show that Pent internalises the Dpp co-receptors, the glypicans Dally and Dally-like protein (Dlp), and propose that this internalisation is important in the establishment of a long range Dpp gradient. Pent-induced endocytosis and degradation of glypicans requires dynamin- and Rab5, but not clathrin or active BMP signalling. Thus, Pent modifies the ability of cells to trap and transduce BMP by fine-tuning the levels of the BMP reception system at the plasma membrane. In addition, and in accordance with the role of glypicans in multiple signalling pathways, we establish a requirement of Pent for Wg signalling. Our data propose a novel mechanism by which morphogen signalling is regulated. DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.7554/eLife.13301.001 PMID:27269283

  9. Fine tuning points of generating function construction for linear recursions

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yolcu, Bahar; Demiralp, Metin

    2014-10-01

    Recursions are quite important mathematical tools since many systems are mathematically modelled to ultimately take us to these equations because of their rather easy algebraic natures. They fit computer programming needs quite well in many circumstances to produce solutions. However, it is generally desired to find the asymptotic behaviour of the general term in the relevant sequence for convergence and therefore practicality issues. One of the general tendencies to find the general term asymptotic behaviour, when its ordering number grows unboundedly, is the integral representation over a generating function which does not depend on individual sequence elements. This is tried to be done almost for all types of recursions, even though the linear cases gain more importance than the others because they can be more effectively investigated by using many linear algebraic tools. Despite this may seem somehow to be rather trivial, there are a lot of theoretical fine tuning issues in the construction of true integral representations over true intervals on real axis or paths in complex domains. This work is devoted to focus on this issue starting from scratch for better understanding of the matter. The example cases are chosen to best illuminate the situations to get information for future generalization even though the work can be considered at somehow introductory level.

  10. ''Fine tuning'' programmable pacemakers using the MUGA study

    SciTech Connect

    Videen, J.S.; Huang, S.K.; Bazgan, I.D.; Mechling, E.; Patton, D.D.

    1985-05-01

    Programmable pacemakers (PPM) can be programmed to sense, stimulate, or inhibit atrial (A) and/or ventricular (V) electrical activity, and include variable A-V delays and other options. Selecting the optimum combination of settings for an individual patient can be a formidable task in the absence of noninvasive, objective, quantifiable measures of cardiac function. The authors attempt to determine whether the MUGA study could be adapted to such a task. MUGA studies were performed on 13 patients (pts) with PPM who had varying degrees of A-V block, during various settings of the PPM's. Studies were carried out 5-10 min. after pacing mode and A-V delay were changed, with the pt resting and supine. All 5 MUGA studies were carried out after a single injection of Tc-99m labeled autologous red blood cells. The results show that the VDD mode brings about a higher left ventricular ejection fraction (LVEF) and cardiac output (CO) than the DVI mode, and that either of these dual-chamber pacing modes produces a higher LVEF and CO than single-chamber pacing (VVI). Furthermore, a longer A-V delay was shown to improve LVEF and CO in patients with initially low LVEF. The MUGA study is simple, noninvasive, objective, and quantifiable, and can easily be repeated several times following a single injection. It can be used to ''fine tune'' programmable pacemakers for optimum hemodynamic performance.

  11. Fine tuning chloroplast movements through physical interactions between phototropins

    PubMed Central

    Sztatelman, Olga; Łabuz, Justyna; Hermanowicz, Paweł; Banaś, Agnieszka Katarzyna; Bażant, Aneta; Zgłobicki, Piotr; Aggarwal, Chhavi; Nadzieja, Marcin; Krzeszowiec, Weronika; Strzałka, Wojciech; Gabryś, Halina

    2016-01-01

    Phototropins are plant photoreceptors which regulate numerous responses to blue light, including chloroplast relocation. Weak blue light induces chloroplast accumulation, whereas strong light leads to an avoidance response. Two Arabidopsis phototropins are characterized by different light sensitivities. Under continuous light, both can elicit chloroplast accumulation, but the avoidance response is controlled solely by phot2. As well as continuous light, brief light pulses also induce chloroplast displacements. Pulses of 0.1s and 0.2s of fluence rate saturating the avoidance response lead to transient chloroplast accumulation. Longer pulses (up to 20s) trigger a biphasic response, namely transient avoidance followed by transient accumulation. This work presents a detailed study of transient chloroplast responses in Arabidopsis. Phototropin mutants display altered chloroplast movements as compared with the wild type: phot1 is characterized by weaker responses, while phot2 exhibits enhanced chloroplast accumulation, especially after 0.1s and 0.2s pulses. To determine the cause of these differences, the abundance and phosphorylation levels of both phototropins, as well as the interactions between phototropin molecules are examined. The formation of phototropin homo- and heterocomplexes is the most plausible explanation of the observed phenomena. The physiological consequences of this interplay are discussed, suggesting the universal character of this mechanism that fine-tunes plant reactions to blue light. Additionally, responses in mutants of different protein phosphatase 2A subunits are examined to assess the role of protein phosphorylation in signaling of chloroplast movements. PMID:27406783

  12. Fine-tuning of macrophage activation using synthetic rocaglate derivatives

    PubMed Central

    Bhattacharya, Bidisha; Chatterjee, Sujoy; Devine, William G.; Kobzik, Lester; Beeler, Aaron B.; Porco, John A.; Kramnik, Igor

    2016-01-01

    Drug-resistant bacteria represent a significant global threat. Given the dearth of new antibiotics, host-directed therapies (HDTs) are especially desirable. As IFN-gamma (IFNγ) plays a central role in host resistance to intracellular bacteria, including Mycobacterium tuberculosis, we searched for small molecules to augment the IFNγ response in macrophages. Using an interferon-inducible nuclear protein Ipr1 as a biomarker of macrophage activation, we performed a high-throughput screen and identified molecules that synergized with low concentration of IFNγ. Several active compounds belonged to the flavagline (rocaglate) family. In primary macrophages a subset of rocaglates 1) synergized with low concentrations of IFNγ in stimulating expression of a subset of IFN-inducible genes, including a key regulator of the IFNγ network, Irf1; 2) suppressed the expression of inducible nitric oxide synthase and type I IFN and 3) induced autophagy. These compounds may represent a basis for macrophage-directed therapies that fine-tune macrophage effector functions to combat intracellular pathogens and reduce inflammatory tissue damage. These therapies would be especially relevant to fighting drug-resistant pathogens, where improving host immunity may prove to be the ultimate resource. PMID:27086720

  13. Spectral Fine Tuning of Cyanine Dyes: Electron Donor-Acceptor Substituted Analogues of Thiazole Orange†

    PubMed Central

    Rastede, Elizabeth E.; Tanha, Matteus; Yaron, David; Watkins, Simon C.; Waggoner, Alan S.; Armitage, Bruce A.

    2015-01-01

    The introduction of electron donor and acceptor groups at strategic locations on a fluorogenic cyanine dye allows fine-tuning of the absorption and emission spectra while preserving the ability of the dye to bind to biomolecular hosts such as double-stranded DNA and a single-chain antibody fragment originally selected for binding to the parent unsubstituted dye, thiazole orange (TO). The observed spectral shifts are consistent with calculated HOMO-LUMO energy gaps and reflect electron density localization on the quinoline half of TO in the LUMO. A dye bearing donating methoxy and withdrawing trifluoromethyl groups on the benzothiazole and quinoline rings, respectively, shifts the absorption spectrum to sufficiently longer wavelengths to allow excitation at green wavelengths as opposed to the parent dye, which is optimally excited in the blue. PMID:26171668

  14. Zipf's Law and Criticality in Multivariate Data without Fine-Tuning

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Schwab, David J.; Nemenman, Ilya; Mehta, Pankaj

    2014-08-01

    The joint probability distribution of states of many degrees of freedom in biological systems, such as firing patterns in neural networks or antibody sequence compositions, often follows Zipf's law, where a power law is observed on a rank-frequency plot. This behavior has been shown to imply that these systems reside near a unique critical point where the extensive parts of the entropy and energy are exactly equal. Here, we show analytically, and via numerical simulations, that Zipf-like probability distributions arise naturally if there is a fluctuating unobserved variable (or variables) that affects the system, such as a common input stimulus that causes individual neurons to fire at time-varying rates. In statistics and machine learning, these are called latent-variable or mixture models. We show that Zipf's law arises generically for large systems, without fine-tuning parameters to a point. Our work gives insight into the ubiquity of Zipf's law in a wide range of systems.

  15. Fine tuning chloroplast movements through physical interactions between phototropins.

    PubMed

    Sztatelman, Olga; Łabuz, Justyna; Hermanowicz, Paweł; Banaś, Agnieszka Katarzyna; Bażant, Aneta; Zgłobicki, Piotr; Aggarwal, Chhavi; Nadzieja, Marcin; Krzeszowiec, Weronika; Strzałka, Wojciech; Gabryś, Halina

    2016-09-01

    Phototropins are plant photoreceptors which regulate numerous responses to blue light, including chloroplast relocation. Weak blue light induces chloroplast accumulation, whereas strong light leads to an avoidance response. Two Arabidopsis phototropins are characterized by different light sensitivities. Under continuous light, both can elicit chloroplast accumulation, but the avoidance response is controlled solely by phot2. As well as continuous light, brief light pulses also induce chloroplast displacements. Pulses of 0.1s and 0.2s of fluence rate saturating the avoidance response lead to transient chloroplast accumulation. Longer pulses (up to 20s) trigger a biphasic response, namely transient avoidance followed by transient accumulation. This work presents a detailed study of transient chloroplast responses in Arabidopsis. Phototropin mutants display altered chloroplast movements as compared with the wild type: phot1 is characterized by weaker responses, while phot2 exhibits enhanced chloroplast accumulation, especially after 0.1s and 0.2s pulses. To determine the cause of these differences, the abundance and phosphorylation levels of both phototropins, as well as the interactions between phototropin molecules are examined. The formation of phototropin homo- and heterocomplexes is the most plausible explanation of the observed phenomena. The physiological consequences of this interplay are discussed, suggesting the universal character of this mechanism that fine-tunes plant reactions to blue light. Additionally, responses in mutants of different protein phosphatase 2A subunits are examined to assess the role of protein phosphorylation in signaling of chloroplast movements. © The Author 2016. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the Society for Experimental Biology.

  16. SUSY models under siege: LHC constraints and electroweak fine-tuning

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Baer, Howard; Barger, Vernon; Mickelson, Dan; Padeffke-Kirkland, Maren

    2014-06-01

    Recent null results from LHC8 supersymmetry (SUSY) searches along with the discovery of a standard model (SM)-like Higgs boson with mass mh≃125.5 GeV indicates sparticle masses in the TeV range, causing tension with conventional measures of electroweak fine-tuning. We propose a simple fine-tuning rule which should be followed under any credible evaluation of fine-tuning. We believe that overestimates of electroweak fine-tuning by conventional measures all arise from violations of this rule. We show that to gain accord with the fine-tuning rule, then both the Higgs mass and the traditional ΔBG fine-tuning measures reduce to the model-independent electroweak fine-tuning measure ΔEW. This occurs by combining dependent contributions to mZ or mh into independent units. Then, using ΔEW, we evaluate EW fine-tuning for a variety of SUSY models including mSUGRA, NUHM1, NUHM2, mGMSB, mAMSB, hyper-charged AMSB, gaugino AMSB and nine cases of mixed moduli-anomaly (mirage) mediated SUSY breaking models while respecting LHC Higgs mass and B-decay constraints (we do not impose LHC8 sparticle mass constraints due to the possibility of compressed spectra within many of these models). We find mSUGRA, mGMSB and the AMSB models all to be highly fine-tuned. The NUHM1 model is moderately fine-tuned while NUHM2 which allows for radiatively driven naturalness (RNS) allows for fine-tuning at a meager 10% level in the case where m(Higgsinos)˜100-200 GeV and the TeV-scale top squarks are well mixed. Models with RNS may or may not be detectable at LHC14. A √s ˜500 GeV e+e- collider will be required to make a definitive search for the requisite light Higgsinos.

  17. Multiple excitatory and inhibitory neural signals converge to fine-tune Caenorhabditis elegans feeding to food availability

    PubMed Central

    Dallière, Nicolas; Bhatla, Nikhil; Luedtke, Zara; Ma, Dengke K.; Woolman, Jonathan; Walker, Robert J.; Holden-Dye, Lindy; O’Connor, Vincent

    2016-01-01

    How an animal matches feeding to food availability is a key question for energy homeostasis. We addressed this in the nematode Caenorhabditis elegans, which couples feeding to the presence of its food (bacteria) by regulating pharyngeal activity (pumping). We scored pumping in the presence of food and over an extended time course of food deprivation in wild-type and mutant worms to determine the neural substrates of adaptive behavior. Removal of food initially suppressed pumping but after 2 h this was accompanied by intermittent periods of high activity. We show pumping is fine-tuned by context-specific neural mechanisms and highlight a key role for inhibitory glutamatergic and excitatory cholinergic/peptidergic drives in the absence of food. Additionally, the synaptic protein UNC-31 [calcium-activated protein for secretion (CAPS)] acts through an inhibitory pathway not explained by previously identified contributions of UNC-31/CAPS to neuropeptide or glutamate transmission. Pumping was unaffected by laser ablation of connectivity between the pharyngeal and central nervous system indicating signals are either humoral or intrinsic to the enteric system. This framework in which control is mediated through finely tuned excitatory and inhibitory drives resonates with mammalian hypothalamic control of feeding and suggests that fundamental regulation of this basic animal behavior may be conserved through evolution from nematode to human.—Dallière, N., Bhatla, N., Luedtke, Z., Ma, D. K., Woolman, J., Walker, R. J., Holden-Dye, L., O’Connor, V. Multiple excitatory and inhibitory neural signals converge to fine-tune Caenorhabditis elegans feeding to food availability. PMID:26514165

  18. Fine-tuning the metallic core-shell nanostructures for plasmonic perovskite solar cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tang, Mingyao; Zhou, Lin; Gu, Shuai; Zhu, Weidong; Wang, Yang; Xu, Jun; Deng, Zhengtao; Yu, Tao; Lu, Zhenda; Zhu, Jia

    2016-10-01

    Plasmonic nanostructures have been widely applied in various types of solar cells for improving light absorption and therefore energy conversion efficiency. In this work, we demonstrate that Au@SiO2 core-shell nanorods with finely tuned aspect ratios are highly beneficial for the CH3NH3PbI3 perovskite solar cell, with the simultaneous enhancement of solar absorption and external quantum efficiency across a broad range of wavelength, which can contribute to the increased cross-sectional scattering and spectrally absorbing energy density. Therefore, a 16.1% improvement (from 12.4% to 14.4%) of the maximal external quantum efficiency can be achieved by such structures, accompanied with a 13.5% improvement (from 20.0 to 22.7 mA/cm2) of the maximal short-circuit current density and little improvement of the open-circuit voltage and fill factor. Our findings also provide a general guideline to design solar cell structures with thinner absorber layers and improve the absorption in other poorly light-absorbing devices like lead free perovskite solar cells as well.

  19. Fine-tuning somatostatin receptor signalling by agonist-selective phosphorylation and dephosphorylation: IUPHAR Review 5

    PubMed Central

    Schulz, Stefan; Lehmann, Andreas; Kliewer, Andrea; Nagel, Falko

    2014-01-01

    The biological actions of somatostatin are mediated by a family of five GPCRs, named sst1 to sst5. Somatostatin receptors exhibit equally high-binding affinities to their natural ligand somatostatin-14 and largely overlapping distributions. The overexpression of somatostatin receptors in human tumours is the molecular basis for diagnostic and therapeutic application of the stable somatostatin analogues octreotide, lanreotide and pasireotide. The efficiency of somatostatin receptor signalling is tightly regulated and ultimately limited by the coordinated phosphorylation and dephosphorylation of intracellular carboxyl-terminal serine and threonine residues. Here, we review and discuss recent progress in the generation and application of phosphosite-specific antibodies for human sst2 and sst5 receptors. These phosphosite-specific antibodies are unique tools to monitor the spatial and temporal dynamics of receptors phosphorylation and dephosphorylation. Using a combined approach of phosphosite-specific antibodies and siRNA knock-down screening, relevant kinases and phosphatases were identified. Emerging evidence suggests distinct mechanisms of agonist-selective fine-tuning for individual somatostatin receptors. The recently uncovered differences in phosphorylation and dephosphorylation of these receptors may hence be of physiological significance in mediating responses to acute, persistent or repeated stimuli in a variety of target tissues. PMID:24328848

  20. Reducing the fine-tuning of gauge-mediated SUSY breaking

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Casas, J. Alberto; Moreno, Jesús M.; Robles, Sandra; Rolbiecki, Krzysztof

    2016-08-01

    Despite their appealing features, models with gauge-mediated supersymmetry breaking (GMSB) typically present a high degree of fine-tuning, due to the initial absence of the top trilinear scalar couplings, A_t=0. In this paper, we carefully evaluate such a tuning, showing that is worse than per mil in the minimal model. Then, we examine some existing proposals to generate A_t≠ 0 term in this context. We find that, although the stops can be made lighter, usually the tuning does not improve (it may be even worse), with some exceptions, which involve the generation of A_t at one loop or tree level. We examine both possibilities and propose a conceptually simplified version of the latter; which is arguably the optimum GMSB setup (with minimal matter content), concerning the fine-tuning issue. The resulting fine-tuning is better than one per mil, still severe but similar to other minimal supersymmetric standard model constructions. We also explore the so-called "little A_t^2/m^2 problem", i.e. the fact that a large A_t-term is normally accompanied by a similar or larger sfermion mass, which typically implies an increase in the fine-tuning. Finally, we find the version of GMSB for which this ratio is optimized, which, nevertheless, does not minimize the fine-tuning.

  1. Metalloprotease OMA1 Fine-tunes Mitochondrial Bioenergetic Function and Respiratory Supercomplex Stability

    PubMed Central

    Bohovych, Iryna; Fernandez, Mario R.; Rahn, Jennifer J.; Stackley, Krista D.; Bestman, Jennifer E.; Anandhan, Annadurai; Franco, Rodrigo; Claypool, Steven M.; Lewis, Robert E.; Chan, Sherine S. L.; Khalimonchuk, Oleh

    2015-01-01

    Mitochondria are involved in key cellular functions including energy production, metabolic homeostasis, and apoptosis. Normal mitochondrial function is preserved by several interrelated mechanisms. One mechanism – intramitochondrial quality control (IMQC) – is represented by conserved proteases distributed across mitochondrial compartments. Many aspects and physiological roles of IMQC components remain unclear. Here, we show that the IMQC protease Oma1 is required for the stability of the respiratory supercomplexes and thus balanced and tunable bioenergetic function. Loss of Oma1 activity leads to a specific destabilization of respiratory supercomplexes and consequently to unbalanced respiration and progressive respiratory decline in yeast. Similarly, experiments in cultured Oma1-deficient mouse embryonic fibroblasts link together impeded supercomplex stability and inability to maintain proper respiration under conditions that require maximal bioenergetic output. Finally, transient knockdown of OMA1 in zebrafish leads to impeded bioenergetics and morphological defects of the heart and eyes. Together, our biochemical and genetic studies in yeast, zebrafish and mammalian cells identify a novel and conserved physiological role for Oma1 protease in fine-tuning of respiratory function. We suggest that this unexpected physiological role is important for cellular bioenergetic plasticity and may contribute to Oma1-associated disease phenotypes in humans. PMID:26365306

  2. Fibroblast Growth Factor 21 Protects against Atherosclerosis via Fine-Tuning the Multiorgan Crosstalk

    PubMed Central

    Jin, Leigang; Lin, Zhuofeng

    2016-01-01

    Fibroblast growth factor 21 (FGF21) is a metabolic hormone with pleiotropic effects on energy metabolism and insulin sensitivity. Besides its antiobese and antidiabetic activity, FGF21 also possesses the protective effects against atherosclerosis. Circulating levels of FGF21 are elevated in patients with atherosclerosis, macrovascular and microvascular complications of diabetes, possibly due to a compensatory upregulation. In apolipoprotein E-deficient mice, formation of atherosclerotic plaques is exacerbated by genetic depletion of FGF21, but is attenuated upon replenishment with recombinant FGF21. However, the blood vessel is not the direct target of FGF21, and the antiatherosclerotic activity of FGF21 is attributed to its actions in adipose tissues and liver. In adipocytes, FGF21 promotes secretion of adiponectin, which in turn acts directly on blood vessels to reduce endothelial dysfunction, inhibit proliferation of smooth muscle cells and block conversion of macrophages to foam cells. Furthermore, FGF21 suppresses cholesterol biosynthesis and attenuates hypercholesterolemia by inhibiting the transcription factor sterol regulatory element-binding protein-2 in hepatocytes. The effects of FGF21 on elevation of adiponectin and reduction of hypercholesterolemia are also observed in a phase-1b clinical trial in patients with obesity and diabetes. Therefore, FGF21 exerts its protection against atherosclerosis by fine-tuning the interorgan crosstalk between liver, brain, adipose tissue, and blood vessels. PMID:26912152

  3. Fine-tuned Bee-Flower Coevolutionary State Hidden within Multiple Pollination Interactions

    PubMed Central

    Shimizu, Akira; Dohzono, Ikumi; Nakaji, Masayoshi; Roff, Derek A.; Miller III, Donald G.; Osato, Sara; Yajima, Takuya; Niitsu, Shûhei; Utsugi, Nozomu; Sugawara, Takashi; Yoshimura, Jin

    2014-01-01

    Relationships between flowers and pollinators are generally considered cases of mutualism since both agents gain benefits. Fine-tuned adaptations are usually found in the form of strict one-to-one coevolution between species. Many insect pollinators are, however, considered generalists, visiting numerous kinds of flowers, and many flower species (angiosperms) are also considered generalists, visited by many insect pollinators. We here describe a fine-tuned coevolutionary state of a flower-visiting bee that collects both nectar and pollen from an early spring flower visited by multiple pollinators. Detailed morphology of the bee proboscis is shown to be finely adjusted to the floral morphology and nectar production of the flower. Behavioral observations also confirm the precision of this mutualism. Our results suggest that a fine-tuned one-to-one coevolutionary state between a flower species and a pollinator species might be common, but frequently overlooked, in multiple flower-pollinator interactions. PMID:24496444

  4. Localized electrical fine tuning of passive microwave and radio frequency devices

    DOEpatents

    Findikoglu, Alp T.

    2001-04-10

    A method and apparatus for the localized electrical fine tuning of passive multiple element microwave or RF devices in which a nonlinear dielectric material is deposited onto predetermined areas of a substrate containing the device. An appropriate electrically conductive material is deposited over predetermined areas of the nonlinear dielectric and the signal line of the device for providing electrical contact with the nonlinear dielectric. Individual, adjustable bias voltages are applied to the electrically conductive material allowing localized electrical fine tuning of the devices. The method of the present invention can be applied to manufactured devices, or can be incorporated into the design of the devices so that it is applied at the time the devices are manufactured. The invention can be configured to provide localized fine tuning for devices including but not limited to coplanar waveguides, slotline devices, stripline devices, and microstrip devices.

  5. Fine-tuning in GGM and the 126 GeV Higgs particle

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lalak, Zygmunt; Lewicki, Marek

    2013-05-01

    In this paper we reanalyze the issue of fine-tuning in supersymmetric models which feature Generalized Gauge Mediation (GGM) in the light of recent measurement of the mass of the light Higgs particle and taking into account available data on the value of the muon magnetic moment {g_{μ }}-2 . We consider GGM models with 3, 5 and 6 input parameters and reduce the fine-tuning by assuming simple relations between them at the high scale. We are able to find solutions which give the correct value of the light Higgs mass and are less fine-tuned than models with standard gauge mediation (and with gravity mediation), however one never finds fine-tung measure lower than about 102 if one neglects the data on {g_{μ }}-2 and and about four times more if one takes the constraint given by {g_{μ }}-2 into account. In general the current {g_{μ }}-2 data push the models towards the high fine-tuning region. It is interesting to note, that once one removes the contributions to the finetuning induced by μ and B μ , then in the case with neglected {g_{μ }}-2 constraint one can easily find realistic vacua with fine-tuning of order 1 or lower, while the fine-tung remains always large when the {g_{μ }}-2 constraint is enforced. One should note, that in the last case even a small shift of the light Higgs mass towards smaller values both reduces fine-tuning and helps to improve agreement of a model with {g_{μ }}-2 data.

  6. Fine-Tuning Language Policy in Hong Kong Education: Stakeholders' Perceptions, Practices and Challenges

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Chan, Jim Y. H.

    2014-01-01

    The present study evaluates the impact of the fine-tuning medium of instruction (MOI) policy in Hong Kong in the early stages of its implementation. It explores the key stakeholders' perspectives on a school-based policy via a case study, which gathered multiple sources of qualitative data (i.e. focus groups/interviews, open-ended questionnaires,…

  7. Cdc5-Dependent Asymmetric Localization of Bfa1 Fine-Tunes Timely Mitotic Exit

    PubMed Central

    Bahk, Young Yil; Song, Kiwon

    2012-01-01

    In budding yeast, the major regulator of the mitotic exit network (MEN) is Tem1, a GTPase, which is inhibited by the GTPase-activating protein (GAP), Bfa1/Bub2. Asymmetric Bfa1 localization to the bud-directed spindle pole body (SPB) during metaphase also controls mitotic exit, but the molecular mechanism and function of this localization are not well understood, particularly in unperturbed cells. We identified four novel Cdc5 target residues within the Bfa1 C-terminus: 452S, 453S, 454S, and 559S. A Bfa1 mutant in which all of these residues had been changed to alanine (Bfa14A) persisted on both SPBs at anaphase and was hypo-phosphorylated, despite retaining its GAP activity for Tem1. A Bfa1 phospho-mimetic mutant in which all of these residues were switched to aspartate (Bfa14D) always localized asymmetrically to the SPB. These observations demonstrate that asymmetric localization of Bfa1 is tightly linked to its Cdc5-dependent phosphorylation, but not to its GAP activity. Consistent with this, in kinase-defective cdc5-2 cells Bfa1 was not phosphorylated and localized to both SPBs, whereas Bfa14D was asymmetrically localized. BFA14A cells progressed through anaphase normally but displayed delayed mitotic exit in unperturbed cell cycles, while BFA14D cells underwent mitotic exit with the same kinetics as wild-type cells. We suggest that Cdc5 induces the asymmetric distribution of Bfa1 to the bud-directed SPB independently of Bfa1 GAP activity at anaphase and that Bfa1 asymmetry fine-tunes the timing of MEN activation in unperturbed cell cycles. PMID:22253605

  8. A versatile apparatus for the fine-tuned synthesis of cluster-based materials

    SciTech Connect

    Fischer, A. Kruk, R.; Hahn, H.

    2015-02-15

    In this paper, a custom-designed experimental setup for the fine-tuned synthesis of various cluster–based materials is presented. Providing custom-designed deposition stages and special sample holders it offers a high degree of control over the sample characteristics such as the cluster size, cluster amounts, and sample homogeneity in combination with high sample purity. The system is capable of producing thin films of pure clusters and various cluster-matrix combinations with cluster sizes ranging from single atoms up to aggregates of several thousand atoms. Two custom-designed deposition stages are available, one utilizes the full cluster beam, yielding micrograms of pure clusters within a few hours and the second one uses mass-separated clusters (mass-resolution between 2% and 10%), yielding nanograms of pure clusters in the same timescale. Furthermore, at the second deposition stage, a variety of matrix materials can be co-deposited at a controlled sample temperature between 153 K and 673 K. In order to prove the capabilities of the apparatus, a series of experiments with Fe clusters embedded in Ag matrices with different volume fractions of clusters were carried out. Energy dispersive X-ray spectroscopy measurements revealed that the amount of deposited clusters as well as the sample homogeneity can be controlled with an outstanding accuracy of 10%. Additional measurements of the magnetic properties indicated the presence of separated clusters for volume fractions of clusters around 2 volume percent (vol. %), while above this concentration (10 vol. %) a partial aggregation of the clusters was observed. It was also shown that the resulting thin films are nearly oxygen free, which ascertains that oxygen sensitive materials can be safely handled in this newly developed apparatus.

  9. Novel players fine-tune plant trade-offs.

    PubMed

    Gimenez-Ibanez, Selena; Boter, Marta; Solano, Roberto

    2015-01-01

    Jasmonates (JAs) are essential signalling molecules that co-ordinate the plant response to biotic and abiotic challenges, as well as co-ordinating several developmental processes. Huge progress has been made over the last decade in understanding the components and mechanisms that govern JA perception and signalling. The bioactive form of the hormone, (+)-7-iso-jasmonyl-L-isoleucine (JA-Ile), is perceived by the COI1-JAZ co-receptor complex. JASMONATE ZIM DOMAIN (JAZ) proteins also act as direct repressors of transcriptional activators such as MYC2. In the emerging picture of JA-Ile perception and signalling, COI1 operates as an E3 ubiquitin ligase that upon binding of JA-Ile targets JAZ repressors for degradation by the 26S proteasome, thereby derepressing transcription factors such as MYC2, which in turn activate JA-Ile-dependent transcriptional reprogramming. It is noteworthy that MYCs and different spliced variants of the JAZ proteins are involved in a negative regulatory feedback loop, which suggests a model that rapidly turns the transcriptional JA-Ile responses on and off and thereby avoids a detrimental overactivation of the pathway. This chapter highlights the most recent advances in our understanding of JA-Ile signalling, focusing on the latest repertoire of new targets of JAZ proteins to control different sets of JA-Ile-mediated responses, novel mechanisms of negative regulation of JA-Ile signalling, and hormonal cross-talk at the molecular level that ultimately determines plant adaptability and survival.

  10. EARLY FLOWERING3 Redundancy Fine-Tunes Photoperiod Sensitivity.

    PubMed

    Rubenach, Andrew J S; Hecht, Valérie; Vander Schoor, Jacqueline K; Liew, Lim Chee; Aubert, Gregoire; Burstin, Judith; Weller, James L

    2017-04-01

    Three pea (Pisum sativum) loci controlling photoperiod sensitivity, HIGH RESPONSE (HR), DIE NEUTRALIS (DNE), and STERILE NODES (SN), have recently been shown to correspond to orthologs of Arabidopsis (Arabidopsis thaliana) circadian clock genes EARLY FLOWERING3 (ELF3), ELF4, and LUX ARRHYTHMO, respectively. A fourth pea locus, PHOTOPERIOD (PPD), also contributes to the photoperiod response in a similar manner to SN and DNE, and recessive ppd mutants on a spring-flowering hr mutant background show early, photoperiod-insensitive flowering. However, the molecular identity of PPD has so far remained elusive. Here, we show that the PPD locus also has a role in maintenance of diurnal and circadian gene expression rhythms and identify PPD as an ELF3 co-ortholog, termed ELF3b Genetic interactions between pea ELF3 genes suggest that loss of PPD function does not affect flowering time in the presence of functional HR, whereas PPD can compensate only partially for the lack of HR These results provide an illustration of how gene duplication and divergence can generate potential for the emergence of more subtle variations in phenotype that may be adaptively significant. © 2017 American Society of Plant Biologists. All Rights Reserved.

  11. Carbohydrate-binding modules: fine-tuning polysaccharide recognition

    PubMed Central

    2004-01-01

    The enzymic degradation of insoluble polysaccharides is one of the most important reactions on earth. Despite this, glycoside hydrolases attack such polysaccharides relatively inefficiently as their target glycosidic bonds are often inaccessible to the active site of the appropriate enzymes. In order to overcome these problems, many of the glycoside hydrolases that utilize insoluble substrates are modular, comprising catalytic modules appended to one or more non-catalytic CBMs (carbohydrate-binding modules). CBMs promote the association of the enzyme with the substrate. In view of the central role that CBMs play in the enzymic hydrolysis of plant structural and storage polysaccharides, the ligand specificity displayed by these protein modules and the mechanism by which they recognize their target carbohydrates have received considerable attention since their discovery almost 20 years ago. In the last few years, CBM research has harnessed structural, functional and bioinformatic approaches to elucidate the molecular determinants that drive CBM–carbohydrate recognition. The present review summarizes the impact structural biology has had on our understanding of the mechanisms by which CBMs bind to their target ligands. PMID:15214846

  12. Fine-tuning criteria for inflation and the search for primordial gravitational waves

    SciTech Connect

    Bird, Simeon; Peiris, Hiranya V.; Easther, Richard

    2008-10-15

    We revisit arguments that simple models of inflation with a small red tilt in the scalar power spectrum generically yield an observable tensor spectrum. We show that criteria for fine-tuning based upon the algebraic simplicity of the potential depend strongly upon the explicit assumptions they incorporate, particularly regarding the end of inflation. In addition, some models with algebraically simple potentials require carefully tuned initial field configurations, and not all types of fine-tuning are identifiable via the algebraic simplicity of the potential. Conversely, in the absence of a strong prior on the mechanism that ends inflation, we demonstrate the existence of potentials with vanishingly small tensor amplitudes which are natural in terms of both their algebraic form and initial conditions. We thus argue that proposed experiments (CMBPol or BBO) which make highly sensitive measurements of the tensor amplitude cannot definitively rule out the inflationary paradigm.

  13. Death receptors on reactive astrocytes: a key role in the fine tuning of brain inflammation?

    PubMed

    Dietrich, Pierre-Yves; Walker, Paul R; Saas, Philippe

    2003-02-25

    Immune responses protect the CNS against pathogens. However, the fact that there is little dispensable tissue in the brain makes regulation necessary to avoid disastrous immune-mediated damage. Astrocytes respond vigorously to any brain injury (e.g., tumor, stroke, AD, MS, HIV) and are postulated to play an important role in the fine tuning of brain inflammation. The authors propose that astrocytes use death receptors to modulate pro- and anti-inflammatory effects.

  14. An Undecanuclear Ferrimagnetic Cu9Dy2 Single Molecule Magnet Achieved through Ligand Fine-Tuning.

    PubMed

    Kühne, Irina A; Kostakis, George E; Anson, Christopher E; Powell, Annie K

    2016-05-02

    We describe the concept of increasing the nuclearity of a previously reported high-spin Cu5Gd2 core using a "fine-tuning" ligand approach. Thus, two Cu9Ln2 coordination clusters, with Ln = Dy (1) and Gd (2), were synthesized with the Gd compound having a ground spin state of (17)/2 and the Dy analogue showing single-molecule-magnet behavior in zero field.

  15. Controlling the fine-tuning problem with singlet scalar dark matter

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chakraborty, Indrani; Kundu, Anirban

    2013-03-01

    Assuming that no other conventional new physics is found immediately at the LHC, we investigate how just the consistent solution of the scalar mass hierarchy problem points towards the minimal necessary field content. We show that to ameliorate the fine-tuning problem, one needs to introduce more scalar degrees of freedom. The simplest solution is one or more real singlets (with the possibility of combining two of them in a complex singlet), which may act as viable cold dark matter candidates, because the constraints on the scalar potential disfavor any mixing between the new scalar(s) with the SM doublet. Furthermore, the fine-tuning problem of the new scalars necessitates the introduction of vectorlike fermions. Thus, singlet scalar(s) and vector fermions are minimal enhancements over the Standard Model to alleviate the fine-tuning problem. We also show that the model predicts Landau poles for all the scalar couplings, whose positions depend only on the number of such singlets. Thus, introduction of some new physics at that scale becomes inevitable. We also discuss how the model confronts the LHC constraints and the latest XENON100 data.

  16. Fine-tuned grayscale optofluidic maskless lithography for three-dimensional freeform shape microstructure fabrication.

    PubMed

    Song, Suk-Heung; Kim, Kibeom; Choi, Sung-Eun; Han, Sangkwon; Lee, Ho-Suk; Kwon, Sunghoon; Park, Wook

    2014-09-01

    This article presents free-floating three-dimensional (3D) microstructure fabrication in a microfluidic channel using direct fine-tuned grayscale image lithography. The image is designed as a freeform shape and is composed of gray shades as light-absorbing features. Gray shade levels are modulated through multiple reflections of light in a digital micromirror device (DMD) to produce different height formations. Whereas conventional photolithography has several limitations in producing grayscale colors on photomask features, our method focuses on a maskless, single-shot process for fabrication of freeform 3D micro-scale shapes. The fine-tuned gray image is designed using an 8-bit grayscale color; thus, each pixel is capable of displaying 256 gray shades. The pattern of the UV light reflecting on the DMD is transferred to a photocurable resin flowing through a microfluidic channel. Here, we demonstrate diverse free-floating 3D microstructure fabrication using fine-tuned grayscale image lithography. Additionally, we produce polymeric microstructures with locally embedded gray encoding patterns, such as grayscale-encoded microtags. This functional microstructure can be applied to a biophysical detection system combined with 3D microstructures. This method would be suitable for fabricating 3D microstructures that have a specific morphology to be used for particular biological or medical applications.

  17. Fine-Tuning of Mast Cell Activation by FcεRIβ Chain

    PubMed Central

    Ra, Chisei; Nunomura, Satoshi; Okayama, Yoshimichi

    2012-01-01

    Mast cells play a key role in allergic reaction and disorders through the high affinity receptor for IgE (FcεRI) which is primarily activated by IgE and antigen complex. In humans, mast cells express two types of FcεRI on the cell surface, tetrameric αβγ2 and trimeric αγ2, whereas in mice, the tetrameric αβγ2 type is exclusively expressed. In human allergic inflammation lesions, mast cells increase in number and preferentially express the αβγ2 type FcεRI. By contrast, in the lesion of non-allergic inflammation, mast cells mainly express the αγ2type. Since the β chain amplifies the expression and signaling of FcεRI, mast cell effector functions and allergic reaction in vivo are enhanced in the presence of the β chain. In contrast, a truncated β chain-isoform (βT) inhibits FcεRI surface expression. The human FcεRIβ gene contains seven exons and a repressor element located in the forth intron, through which FcεRIβ transcription is repressed in the presence of GM-CSF. Regarding the additional signal regulatory function of the β chain, the β chain ITAM has dual (positive and negative) functions in the regulation of the mast cell activation. Namely, the FcεRIβ chain ITAM enhances the mast cell activation signal triggered by a low-intensity (weak) stimulation whereas it suppresses the signal triggered by high-intensity (strong) stimulation. In an oxazolone-induced mouse CHS model, IgE-mediated mast cell activation is required and the β chain ITAM is crucially involved. Adenosine receptor, one of the GPCRs, triggers a synergistic degranulation response with FcεRI in mast cells, for which the β chain ITAM critically plays positive role, possibly reflecting the in vivo allergic response. These regulatory functions of the FcεRIβ ITAM finely tune FcεRI-induced mast cell activation depending on the stimulation strength, enabling the FcεRIβ chain to become a potential molecular target for the development of new strategies for therapeutic

  18. Self-replicating RNA vaccine functionality modulated by fine-tuning of polyplex delivery vehicle structure.

    PubMed

    Démoulins, Thomas; Ebensen, Thomas; Schulze, Kai; Englezou, Pavlos C; Milona, Panagiota; Pelliccia, Maria; Guzmán, Carlos A; Ruggli, Nicolas; McCullough, Kenneth C

    2017-09-18

    The major limitations with large and complex self-amplifying RNA vaccines (RepRNA) are RNase-sensitivity and inefficient translation in dendritic cells (DCs). Condensing RepRNA with polyethylenimine (PEI) gave positive in vitro readouts, but was largely inferior to virus-like replicon particles (VRP) or direct electroporation. In the present study, we improved such polyplex formulation and determined that fine-tuning of the polyplex structure is essential for ensuring efficacious translation. Thereby, three parameters dominate: (i) PEI molecular weight (MW); (ii) RepRNA:PEI (weight:weight) ratio; and (iii) inclusion of cell penetrating peptides (CPPs). Seven commercially available linear PEIs (MW 2500-250,000) were classified as strong, intermediate or low for their aptitude at complexing and protecting RepRNA for delivery into porcine blood DCs. Inclusion of (Arg)9 or TAT(57-57) CPPs further modified the translation readouts, but varied for different gene expressions. Dependent on the formulation, translation of the gene of interest (GOI) inserted into the RepRNA (luciferase, or influenza virus hemagglutinin or nucleoprotein) could decrease, while the RepRNA structural gene (E2) translation increased. This was noted in the porcine SK6 cell line, as well as both porcine and, for the first time, human DCs. Two formulations - [Rep/PEI-4000 (1:3)] and [Rep/PEI-40,000 (1:2)/(Arg)9] were efficacious in vivo in mice and pigs, where specific CD8(+) T and CD4(+) T-cell responses against the GOI-encoded antigen were observed for the first time. The results demonstrate that different polyplex formulations differ in their interaction with the RepRNA such that only certain genes can be translated. Thus, delivery of these large self-replicating RNA molecules require definition with respect to translation of different genes, rather than just the GOI as is the norm, for identifying optimal delivery for the desired immune activation in vivo. Copyright © 2017. Published by

  19. How conventional measures overestimate electroweak fine-tuning in supersymmetric theory

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Baer, Howard; Barger, Vernon; Mickelson, Dan

    2013-11-01

    The lack of evidence for superparticles at the CERN LHC, along with the rather high value of the Higgs boson mass, has sharpened the perception that what remains of supersymmetric model parameter space suffers a high degree of electroweak fine-tuning (EWFT). We compare three different measures of fine-tuning in supersymmetric models. First, ΔHS measures a subset of terms containing large log contributions to mZ (and mh) that are inevitable in models defined at scales much higher than the electroweak scale. Second, the traditional ΔBG measures fractional variation in mZ against fractional variation of model parameters and allows for correlations among high scale parameters which are not included in ΔHS. Third, the model-independent ΔEW measures how naturally a model can generate the measured value of mZ=91.2GeV (or mh) in terms of weak scale parameters alone. We hypothesize an overarching ultimate theory (UTH) wherein the high scale soft terms are all correlated. The UTH might be contained within the more general effective supersymmetry theories which are popular in the literature. In the case of ΔHS, EWFT can be grossly overestimated by neglecting additional nonindependent terms which lead to large cancellations. In the case of ΔBG, EWFT can be overestimated by applying the measure to the effective theories instead of to the UTH. The measure ΔEW allows for the possibility of parameter correlations which should be present in the UTH and, since it is model independent, provides the same value of EWFT for the effective theories as should occur for the UTH. We find that the well-known minimal supergravity model/constrained minimal supersymmetric model is fine-tuned under all three measures so that it is unlikely to contain the UTH. The nonuniversal Higgs model NUHM2 appears fine-tuned with ΔHS,BG≳103. But since ΔEW can be as small as 7 (corresponding to 14% fine-tuning), it may contain the UTH for parameter ranges which allow for low true EWFT.

  20. Fine-tuning problems in quantum field theory and Lorentz invariance: A scalar-fermion model with a physical momentum cutoff

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cortés, J. L.; López-Sarrión, Justo

    2017-05-01

    In this paper, we study the consistency of having Lorentz invariance as a low energy approximation within the quantum field theory framework. A model with a scalar and a fermion field is used to show how a Lorentz invariance violating high momentum scale, a physical cutoff rendering the quantum field theory finite, can be made compatible with a suppression of Lorentz invariance violations at low momenta. The fine tuning required to get this suppression and to have a light scalar particle in the spectrum are determined at one loop.

  1. An Ensemble of Fine-Tuned Convolutional Neural Networks for Medical Image Classification.

    PubMed

    Kumar, Ashnil; Kim, Jinman; Lyndon, David; Fulham, Michael; Feng, Dagan

    2017-01-01

    The availability of medical imaging data from clinical archives, research literature, and clinical manuals, coupled with recent advances in computer vision offer the opportunity for image-based diagnosis, teaching, and biomedical research. However, the content and semantics of an image can vary depending on its modality and as such the identification of image modality is an important preliminary step. The key challenge for automatically classifying the modality of a medical image is due to the visual characteristics of different modalities: some are visually distinct while others may have only subtle differences. This challenge is compounded by variations in the appearance of images based on the diseases depicted and a lack of sufficient training data for some modalities. In this paper, we introduce a new method for classifying medical images that uses an ensemble of different convolutional neural network (CNN) architectures. CNNs are a state-of-the-art image classification technique that learns the optimal image features for a given classification task. We hypothesise that different CNN architectures learn different levels of semantic image representation and thus an ensemble of CNNs will enable higher quality features to be extracted. Our method develops a new feature extractor by fine-tuning CNNs that have been initialized on a large dataset of natural images. The fine-tuning process leverages the generic image features from natural images that are fundamental for all images and optimizes them for the variety of medical imaging modalities. These features are used to train numerous multiclass classifiers whose posterior probabilities are fused to predict the modalities of unseen images. Our experiments on the ImageCLEF 2016 medical image public dataset (30 modalities; 6776 training images, and 4166 test images) show that our ensemble of fine-tuned CNNs achieves a higher accuracy than established CNNs. Our ensemble also achieves a higher accuracy than methods in

  2. Fine-tuning and vacuum stability in the Wilsonian effective action

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Krajewski, Tomasz; Lalak, Zygmunt

    2015-10-01

    We have computed the Wilsonian effective action in a simple model with a spontaneously broken chiral parity. The Wilsonian running of relevant parameters makes it possible to discuss in a consistent manner the issues of fine-tuning and the stability of the scalar potential. This has been compared with the standard picture based on a Gell-Mann-Low running. Since the Wilsonian running automatically includes integration of heavy degrees of freedom, the running differs markedly from the Gell-Mann-Low version. Similar behavior can be observed: the scalar mass-squared parameter and the quartic coupling can change sign from a positive to a negative one, due to the running which causes a spontaneous symmetry breaking or an instability in the renormalizable part of the potential for a given range of scales. However, care must be taken when drawing conclusions, because of the truncation of higher-dimension operators. Taking the scalar field's amplitude near the cutoff Λ may cancel the suppression due to the scale, and only the suppression due to small couplings partially justifies the truncation in this region. Also, when taking the cutoff higher, to include larger amplitudes of the fields, the higher-order irrelevant operators, whose coefficients grow with the scale, may affect the conclusion about the stability. The Gell-Mann-Low running allows one to resume relatively easily a class of operators corresponding to large logarithms to the form of the renormalization group equation improved effective potential which is valid over a huge range of scales. In the Wilsonian approach this would correspond to following the running of a large number of irrelevant operators, which is technically problematic. As for the issue of the fine-tuning, since in the Wilsonian approach power-law terms are not subtracted, one can clearly observe the quadratic sensitivity of a fine-tuning measure to the change of the cutoff scale. The Wilsonian version of the radiative symmetry

  3. Group I Metabotropic Glutamate Receptor Interacting Proteins: Fine-Tuning Receptor Functions in Health and Disease

    PubMed Central

    Kalinowska, Magdalena; Francesconi, Anna

    2016-01-01

    Group I metabotropic glutamate receptors mediate slow excitatory neurotransmission in the central nervous system and are critical to activity-dependent synaptic plasticity, a cellular substrate of learning and memory. Dysregulated receptor signaling is implicated in neuropsychiatric conditions ranging from neurodevelopmental to neurodegenerative disorders. Importantly, group I metabotropic glutamate receptor signaling functions can be modulated by interacting proteins that mediate receptor trafficking, expression and coupling efficiency to signaling effectors. These interactions afford cell- or pathway-specific modulation to fine-tune receptor function, thus representing a potential target for pharmacological interventions in pathological conditions. PMID:27296642

  4. Auto-Regulatory RNA Editing Fine-Tunes mRNA Re-Coding and Complex Behaviour in Drosophila

    PubMed Central

    Savva, Yiannis A.; Jepson, James E.C; Sahin, Asli; Sugden, Arthur U.; Dorsky, Jacquelyn S.; Alpert, Lauren; Lawrence, Charles; Reenan, Robert A.

    2014-01-01

    Auto-regulatory feedback loops are a common molecular strategy used to optimize protein function. In Drosophila many mRNAs involved in neuro-transmission are re-coded at the RNA level by the RNA editing enzyme dADAR, leading to the incorporation of amino acids that are not directly encoded by the genome. dADAR also re-codes its own transcript, but the consequences of this auto-regulation in vivo are unclear. Here we show that hard-wiring or abolishing endogenous dADAR auto-regulation dramatically remodels the landscape of re-coding events in a site-specific manner. These molecular phenotypes correlate with altered localization of dADAR within the nuclear compartment. Furthermore, auto-editing exhibits sexually dimorphic patterns of spatial regulation and can be modified by abiotic environmental factors. Finally, we demonstrate that modifying dAdar auto-editing affects adaptive complex behaviors. Our results reveal the in vivo relevance of auto-regulatory control over post-transcriptional mRNA re-coding events in fine-tuning brain function and organismal behavior. PMID:22531175

  5. Facile Access to Twisted Intramolecular Charge-Transfer Fluorogens Bearing Highly Pretwisted Donor-Acceptor Systems Together with Readily Fine-Tuned Charge-Transfer Characters.

    PubMed

    Luo, Yanju; Wang, Yan; Chen, Shiqi; Wang, Ning; Qi, Yige; Zhang, Xiaogen; Yang, Minghui; Huang, Yan; Li, Ming; Yu, Junsheng; Luo, Daibing; Lu, Zhiyun

    2017-05-01

    Twisted intramolecular charge-transfer (TICT) fluorogens bearing highly pretwisted geometries and readily-fine-tuned charge-transfer characters are quite promising sensor and electroluminescence (EL) materials. In this study, by using 4-aryloxy-1,8-naphthalimide derivatives as the molecular framework, it is demonstrated for the first time that a CO bond could serve as the central bond to construct new TICT D-A systems. Photophysical and quantum chemical studies confirm that rotation around central CO bonds is responsible for the formation of a stable TICT state in these compounds. More importantly, owing to the structural adjustability of the aryl moiety and the strong steric interactions between the naphthalimide and the aryl ring systems, these compounds can display readily-fine-tuned TICT characters, hence exhibiting an adjustable solvent polarity threshold for aggregation-induced emission (AIE) activity, and could be AIE-active even in less-polar toluene and nonpolar cyclohexane. Furthermore, these compounds could possess highly-pretwisted ground-state geometries, hence could show good EL performance. The findings reveal a facile but effective molecular constructive strategy for versatile, high-performance optoelectronic TICT compounds. © 2017 WILEY-VCH Verlag GmbH & Co. KGaA, Weinheim.

  6. Fine-tune lens-heating-induced focus drift with different process and illumination settings

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cui, Yuanting

    2001-09-01

    This study is to establish the relationship of lens heating (LH) performance with related process variables and develop the methodology for reducing LH induced focus drift for different products based on ASML LH algorithms and experiment data. Focus drift data is collected at certain LH machine constants for different process settings, such as different clear window images (CLW) in stepper jobs, different exposure doses, reticle transmission rates, and substrates. The further study is done at different illumination settings to establish the correlation between NA/sigma settings, focus drift and LH scaling factors ((mu) 1 (mu) 2). The characteristic (mu) 1, (mu) 2 -- NA/Ill relationship for this i-line stepper is generated using production batches. LH machine constants are fine-tuned based on the Poly layer for 0.30 micrometer Logic Mix-mode, 0.30 micrometer SRAM and 0.35 micrometer Embedded SRAM products. This work provides an accurate and practical way to fine-tune LH for all the i-line/DUV steppers based on the critical layer of representative products in a foundry fab.

  7. Fine-tuning convolutional deep features for MRI based brain tumor classification

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ahmed, Kaoutar B.; Hall, Lawrence O.; Goldgof, Dmitry B.; Liu, Renhao; Gatenby, Robert A.

    2017-03-01

    Prediction of survival time from brain tumor magnetic resonance images (MRI) is not commonly performed and would ordinarily be a time consuming process. However, current cross-sectional imaging techniques, particularly MRI, can be used to generate many features that may provide information on the patient's prognosis, including survival. This information can potentially be used to identify individuals who would benefit from more aggressive therapy. Rather than using pre-defined and hand-engineered features as with current radiomics methods, we investigated the use of deep features extracted from pre-trained convolutional neural networks (CNNs) in predicting survival time. We also provide evidence for the power of domain specific fine-tuning in improving the performance of a pre-trained CNN's, even though our data set is small. We fine-tuned a CNN initially trained on a large natural image recognition dataset (Imagenet ILSVRC) and transferred the learned feature representations to the survival time prediction task, obtaining over 81% accuracy in a leave one out cross validation.

  8. Fine-tuning with brane-localized flux in 6D supergravity

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Niedermann, Florian; Schneider, Robert

    2016-02-01

    There are claims in the literature that the cosmological constant problem could be solved in a braneworld model with two large (micron-sized) supersymmetric extra dimensions. The mechanism relies on two basic ingredients: first, the cosmological constant only curves the compact bulk geometry into a rugby shape while the 4D curvature stays flat. Second, a brane-localized flux term is introduced in order to circumvent Weinberg's fine-tuning argument, which otherwise enters here through a backdoor via the flux quantization condition. In this paper, we show that the latter mechanism does not work in the way it was designed: the only localized flux coupling that guarantees a flat on-brane geometry is one which preserves the scale invariance of the bulk theory. Consequently, Weinberg's argument applies, making a fine-tuning necessary again. The only remaining window of opportunity lies within scale invariance breaking brane couplings, for which the tuning could be avoided. Whether the corresponding 4D curvature could be kept under control and in agreement with the observed value will be answered in our companion paper [1].

  9. Nonparametric Fine Tuning of Mixtures: Application to Non-Life Insurance Claims Distribution Estimation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sardet, Laure; Patilea, Valentin

    When pricing a specific insurance premium, actuary needs to evaluate the claims cost distribution for the warranty. Traditional actuarial methods use parametric specifications to model claims distribution, like lognormal, Weibull and Pareto laws. Mixtures of such distributions allow to improve the flexibility of the parametric approach and seem to be quite well-adapted to capture the skewness, the long tails as well as the unobserved heterogeneity among the claims. In this paper, instead of looking for a finely tuned mixture with many components, we choose a parsimonious mixture modeling, typically a two or three-component mixture. Next, we use the mixture cumulative distribution function (CDF) to transform data into the unit interval where we apply a beta-kernel smoothing procedure. A bandwidth rule adapted to our methodology is proposed. Finally, the beta-kernel density estimate is back-transformed to recover an estimate of the original claims density. The beta-kernel smoothing provides an automatic fine-tuning of the parsimonious mixture and thus avoids inference in more complex mixture models with many parameters. We investigate the empirical performance of the new method in the estimation of the quantiles with simulated nonnegative data and the quantiles of the individual claims distribution in a non-life insurance application.

  10. Non-volatile resonance modes of a photonic cavity in diamond produced by fine-tuning

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lozovik, A.; Tordjman, M.; Meyler, B.; Bayn, I.; Salzman, J.; Kalish, R.

    2016-10-01

    Methods of fine-tuning the properties of 1D triangular nanobeam diamond based photonic devices, with the aim of enhancing the photon collection efficiency at predetermined wavelengths at ambient temperature, are described. Delicate control of the physical dimensions of the device, which is required to obtain these advantages, is achieved by the deposition of HfO2 monolayers (thickening) and by H2 plasma etching (thinning). These shift the optical properties of the thus-treated photonic crystal to the red and to the blue, respectively. The methods described here demonstrate a practical and straight-forward way to fine-tune the diamond photonic nanocavity into resonance with the zero-phonon line of the Nitrogen-Vacancy (NV-) centers at room temperature with the availability to be kept storable. This approach paves the way to obtain a non-volatile nanobeam structure available at a desired predetermined resonance mode for a subsequent usage of the NV- emission in ambient conditions. It may find valuable applications in diamond-based quantum computing and communications.

  11. Anthropic Reasoning about Fine-Tuning, and Neoclassical Cosmology: Providence, Omnipresence, and Observation Selection Theory

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Walker, Theodore, Jr.

    2011-10-01

    Anthropic reasoning about observation selection effects upon the appearance of cosmic providential fine-tuning (fine-tuning that provides for life) is often motivated by a desire to avoid theological implications (implications favoring the idea of a divine cosmic provider) without appealing to sheer lucky-for-us-cosmic-jackpot happenstance and coincidence. Cosmic coincidence can be rendered less incredible by appealing to a multiverse context. Cosmic providence can be rendered non-theological by appealing to an agent-less providential purpose, or by appealing to less-than-omnipresent/local providers, such as alien intelligences creating life- providing baby universes. Instead of choosing either cosmic coincidence or cosmic providence, as though they were mutually exclusive; it is better to accept both. Neoclassical thought accepts coincidence and providence, plus many local providers and one omnipresent provider. Moreover, fundamental observation selection theory should distinguish the many local observers of some events from the one omnipresent observer of all events. Accepting both coincidence and providence avoids classical theology (providence without coincidence) and classical atheism (coincidence without providence), but not neoclassical theology (providence with coincidence). Cosmology cannot avoid the idea of an all-inclusive omnipresent providential dice-throwing living-creative whole of reality, an idea essential to neoclassical theology, and to neoclassical cosmology.

  12. Activation of oxygen-mediating pathway using copper ions: fine-tuning of growth kinetics in gold nanorod overgrowth.

    PubMed

    Liu, Wenqi; Zhang, Hui; Wen, Tao; Yan, Jiao; Hou, Shuai; Shi, Xiaowei; Hu, Zhijian; Ji, Yinglu; Wu, Xiaochun

    2014-10-21

    Growth kinetics plays an important role in the shape control of nanocrystals (NCs). Herein, we presented a unique way to fine-tune the growth kinetics via oxidative etching activated by copper ions. For the overgrowth of gold nanorods (Au NRs), competitive adsorption of dissolved oxygen on rod surface was found to slow down the overgrowth rate. Copper ions were able to remove the adsorbed oxygen species from the Au surface via oxidative etching, thus exposing more reaction sites for Au deposition. In this way, copper ions facilitated the overgrowth process. Furthermore, Cu(2+) rather than Cu(+) acted as the catalyst for the oxidative etching. Comparative study with Ag(+) indicated that Cu(2+) cannot regulate NC shapes via an underpotential deposition mechanism. In contrast, Ag(+) led to the formation of Au tetrahexahedra (THH) and a slight decrease of the growth rate at similar growth conditions. Combining the distinct roles of the two ions enabled elongated THH to be produced. Copper ions activating the O2 pathway suggested that dissolved oxygen has a strong affinity for the Au surface. Moreover, the results of NC-sensitized singlet oxygen ((1)O2) indicated that the absorbed oxygen species on the surface of Au NCs bounded with low-index facets mainly existed in the form of molecular O2.

  13. A three-component signalling system fine-tunes expression kinetics of HPPK responsible for folate synthesis by positive feedback loop during stress response of Xanthomonas campestris.

    PubMed

    Wang, Fang-Fang; Deng, Chao-Ying; Cai, Zhen; Wang, Ting; Wang, Li; Wang, Xiao-Zheng; Chen, Xiao-Ying; Fang, Rong-Xiang; Qian, Wei

    2014-07-01

    During adaptation to environments, bacteria employ two-component signal transduction systems, which contain histidine kinases and response regulators, to sense and respond to exogenous and cellular stimuli in an accurate spatio-temporal manner. Although the protein phosphorylation process between histidine kinase and response regulator has been well documented, the molecular mechanism fine-tuning phosphorylation levels of response regulators is comparatively less studied. Here we combined genetic and biochemical approaches to reveal that a hybrid histidine kinase, SreS, is involved in the SreK-SreR phosphotransfer process to control salt stress response in the bacterium Xanthomonas campestris. The N-terminal receiver domain of SreS acts as a phosphate sink by competing with the response regulator SreR to accept the phosphoryl group from the latter's cognate histidine kinase SreK. This regulatory process is critical for bacterial survival because the dephosphorylated SreR protein participates in activating one of the tandem promoters (P2) at the 5' end of the sreK-sreR-sreS-hppK operon, and then modulates a transcriptional surge of the stress-responsive gene hppK, which is required for folic acid synthesis. Therefore, our study dissects the biochemical process of a positive feedback loop in which a 'three-component' signalling system fine-tunes expression kinetics of downstream genes. © 2013 Society for Applied Microbiology and John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  14. Radiative natural supersymmetry: Reconciling electroweak fine-tuning and the Higgs boson mass

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Baer, Howard; Barger, Vernon; Huang, Peisi; Mickelson, Dan; Mustafayev, Azar; Tata, Xerxes

    2013-06-01

    Models of natural supersymmetry seek to solve the little hierarchy problem by positing a spectrum of light Higgsinos ≲200-300GeV and light top squarks ≲600GeV along with very heavy squarks and TeV-scale gluinos. Such models have low electroweak fine-tuning and satisfy the LHC constraints. However, in the context of the minimal supersymmetric standard model, they predict too low a value of mh, are frequently in conflict with the measured b→sγ branching fraction, and the relic density of thermally produced Higgsino-like weakly interacting massive particles (WIMPs) falls well below dark matter measurements. We propose a framework dubbed radiative natural supersymmetry (RNS), which can be realized within the minimal supersymmetric standard model (avoiding the addition of extra exotic matter) and which maintains features such as gauge coupling unification and radiative electroweak symmetry breaking. The RNS model can be generated from supersymmetry (SUSY) grand unified theory type models with nonuniversal Higgs masses. Allowing for high-scale soft SUSY breaking Higgs mass mHu>m0 leads to automatic cancellations during renormalization group running and to radiatively-induced low fine-tuning at the electroweak scale. Coupled with large mixing in the top-squark sector, RNS allows for fine-tuning at the 3%-10% level with TeV-scale top squarks and a 125 GeV light Higgs scalar h. The model allows for at least a partial solution to the SUSY flavor, CP, and gravitino problems since first-/second-generation scalars (and the gravitino) may exist in the 10-30 TeV regime. We outline some possible signatures for RNS at the LHC, such as the appearance of low invariant mass opposite-sign isolated dileptons from gluino cascade decays. The smoking gun signature for RNS is the appearance of light Higgsinos at a linear e+e- collider. If the strong CP problem is solved by the Peccei-Quinn mechanism, then RNS naturally accommodates mixed axion-Higgsino cold dark matter, where the

  15. Phenotypic flexibility of gape anatomy fine-tunes the aquatic prey-capture system of newts.

    PubMed

    Van Wassenbergh, Sam; Heiss, Egon

    2016-07-07

    A unique example of phenotypic flexibility of the oral apparatus is present in newts (Salamandridae) that seasonally change between an aquatic and a terrestrial habitat. Newts grow flaps of skin between their upper and lower jaws, the labial lobes, to partly close the corners of the mouth when they adopt an aquatic lifestyle during their breeding season. Using hydrodynamic simulations based on μCT-scans and cranial kinematics during prey-capture in the smooth newt (Lissotriton vulgaris), we showed that this phenotypic flexibility is an adaptive solution to improve aquatic feeding performance: both suction distance and suction force increase by approximately 15% due to the labial lobes. As the subsequent freeing of the corners of the mouth by resorption of the labial lobes is assumed beneficial for the terrestrial capture of prey by the tongue, this flexibility of the mouth fine-tunes the process of capturing prey throughout the seasonal switching between water and land.

  16. Phenotypic flexibility of gape anatomy fine-tunes the aquatic prey-capture system of newts

    PubMed Central

    Van Wassenbergh, Sam; Heiss, Egon

    2016-01-01

    A unique example of phenotypic flexibility of the oral apparatus is present in newts (Salamandridae) that seasonally change between an aquatic and a terrestrial habitat. Newts grow flaps of skin between their upper and lower jaws, the labial lobes, to partly close the corners of the mouth when they adopt an aquatic lifestyle during their breeding season. Using hydrodynamic simulations based on μCT-scans and cranial kinematics during prey-capture in the smooth newt (Lissotriton vulgaris), we showed that this phenotypic flexibility is an adaptive solution to improve aquatic feeding performance: both suction distance and suction force increase by approximately 15% due to the labial lobes. As the subsequent freeing of the corners of the mouth by resorption of the labial lobes is assumed beneficial for the terrestrial capture of prey by the tongue, this flexibility of the mouth fine-tunes the process of capturing prey throughout the seasonal switching between water and land. PMID:27383663

  17. Phenotypic flexibility of gape anatomy fine-tunes the aquatic prey-capture system of newts

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    van Wassenbergh, Sam; Heiss, Egon

    2016-07-01

    A unique example of phenotypic flexibility of the oral apparatus is present in newts (Salamandridae) that seasonally change between an aquatic and a terrestrial habitat. Newts grow flaps of skin between their upper and lower jaws, the labial lobes, to partly close the corners of the mouth when they adopt an aquatic lifestyle during their breeding season. Using hydrodynamic simulations based on μCT-scans and cranial kinematics during prey-capture in the smooth newt (Lissotriton vulgaris), we showed that this phenotypic flexibility is an adaptive solution to improve aquatic feeding performance: both suction distance and suction force increase by approximately 15% due to the labial lobes. As the subsequent freeing of the corners of the mouth by resorption of the labial lobes is assumed beneficial for the terrestrial capture of prey by the tongue, this flexibility of the mouth fine-tunes the process of capturing prey throughout the seasonal switching between water and land.

  18. Lorentz invariance and quantum gravity: an additional fine-tuning problem?

    PubMed

    Collins, John; Perez, Alejandro; Sudarsky, Daniel; Urrutia, Luis; Vucetich, Héctor

    2004-11-05

    Trying to combine standard quantum field theories with gravity leads to a breakdown of the usual structure of space time at around the Planck length, 1.6x10(-35) m, with possible violations of Lorentz invariance. Calculations of preferred-frame effects in quantum gravity have further motivated high precision searches for Lorentz violation. Here, we explain that combining known elementary particle interactions with a Planck-scale preferred frame gives rise to Lorentz violation at the percent level, some 20 orders of magnitude higher than earlier estimates, unless the bare parameters of the theory are unnaturally strongly fine tuned. Therefore an important task is not just the improvement of the precision of searches for violations of Lorentz invariance, but also the search for theoretical mechanisms for automatically preserving Lorentz invariance.

  19. Spontaneous fine-tuning to environment in many-species chemical reaction networks

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Horowitz, Jordan M.; England, Jeremy L.

    2017-07-01

    A chemical mixture that continually absorbs work from its environment may exhibit steady-state chemical concentrations that deviate from their equilibrium values. Such behavior is particularly interesting in a scenario where the environmental work sources are relatively difficult to access, so that only the proper orchestration of many distinct catalytic actors can power the dissipative flux required to maintain a stable, far-from-equilibrium steady state. In this article, we study the dynamics of an in silico chemical network with random connectivity in an environment that makes strong thermodynamic forcing available only to rare combinations of chemical concentrations. We find that the long-time dynamics of such systems are biased toward states that exhibit a fine-tuned extremization of environmental forcing.

  20. Post-fabrication fine-tuning of photonic crystal quantum well infrared photodetectors

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Schartner, S.; Kalchmair, S.; Andrews, A. M.; Klang, P.; Schrenk, W.; Strasser, G.

    2009-06-01

    Photonic crystal (PC) devices require high fabrication accuracy for on demand positioning of resonances. We describe post-fabrication fine-tuning of a PC quantum well infrared photodetector (QWIP) by sidewall-deposition of silicon nitride. The PC resonance was shifted over a bandwidth of 43 cm-1. From photoresponse measurements we calculated a tuning coefficient of ∂ν/∂dSiN=-0.06 cm-1/nm. The QWIP responsivity did not suffer from nitride absorption while the PC resonance increased by a factor of 1.6. This shows that post-fabrication tuning by dielectric deposition with, e.g., silicon nitride is a feasible method to achieve precise implementations of PC devices.

  1. Fine-tuning by strigolactones of root response to low phosphate.

    PubMed

    Kapulnik, Yoram; Koltai, Hinanit

    2016-03-01

    Strigolactones are plant hormones that regulate the development of different plant parts. In the shoot, they regulate axillary bud outgrowth and in the root, root architecture and root-hair length and density. Strigolactones are also involved with communication in the rhizosphere, including enhancement of hyphal branching of arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi. Here we present the role and activity of strigolactones under conditions of phosphate deprivation. Under these conditions, their levels of biosynthesis and exudation increase, leading to changes in shoot and root development. At least for the latter, these changes are likely to be associated with alterations in auxin transport and sensitivity. On the other hand, strigolactones may positively affect plant-mycorrhiza interactions and thereby promote phosphate acquisition by the plant. Strigolactones may be a way for plants to fine-tune their growth pattern under phosphate deprivation.

  2. Fine-Tuning the Properties of Doped Multifunctional Materials by Controlled Reduction of Dopants.

    PubMed

    Barroux, Hugo; Jiang, Tengfei; Paul, Camille; Massuyeau, Florian; Génois, Romain; Gordon, Elijah E; Whangbo, Myung-Hwan; Jobic, Stéphane; Gautier, Romain

    2017-03-02

    The physical properties of doped multifunctional compounds are commonly tuned by controlling the amount of dopants, but this control is limited because all the properties are influenced simultaneously by this single parameter. Here, we present a strategy that enables the fine-tuning of a specific combination of properties by controlling the reduction of dopants. The feasibility of this approach was demonstrated by optimizing the near-IR photoluminescence of strontium titanate SrTiO3 :Ni for potential applications in biomedicine for a range of absorbance in the visible/near-IR region. We discussed how material properties, such as luminescence, conductivity, or photocatalytic properties can be designed by carefully controlling the ratio of dopants in different oxidation states.

  3. How SUMOylation Fine-Tunes the Fanconi Anemia DNA Repair Pathway

    PubMed Central

    Coleman, Kate E.; Huang, Tony T.

    2016-01-01

    Fanconi anemia (FA) is a rare human genetic disorder characterized by developmental defects, bone marrow failure and cancer predisposition, primarily due to a deficiency in the repair of DNA interstrand crosslinks (ICLs). ICL repair through the FA DNA repair pathway is a complicated multi-step process, involving at least 19 FANC proteins and coordination of multiple DNA repair activities, including homologous recombination, nucleotide excision repair and translesion synthesis (TLS). SUMOylation is a critical regulator of several DNA repair pathways, however, the role of this modification in controlling the FA pathway is poorly understood. Here, we summarize recent advances in the fine-tuning of the FA pathway by small ubiquitin-like modifier (SUMO)-targeted ubiquitin ligases (STUbLs) and other SUMO-related interactions, and discuss the implications of these findings in the design of novel therapeutics for alleviating FA-associated condition, including cancer. PMID:27148358

  4. Origin of the fundamental plane of elliptical galaxies in the Coma cluster without fine-tuning

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chiu, Mu-Chen; Ko, Chung-Ming; Shu, Chenggang

    2017-03-01

    Thirty years after the discovery of the fundamental plane, explanations of the tilt of the fundamental plane with respect to the virial plane are still in need of fine-tuning. In this paper, we try to explore the origin of this tilt from the perspective of modified Newtonian dynamics (MOND) by applying the 16 Coma galaxies available in J. Thomas et al. [Mon. Not. R. Astron. Soc. 415, 545 (2011), 10.1111/j.1365-2966.2011.18725.x]. Based on the mass models that can reproduce de Vaucouleurs' law closely, we find that the tilt of the traditional fundamental plane is naturally explained by the simple form of the MONDian interpolating function, if we assume a well motivated choice of anisotropic velocity distribution, and adopt the Kroupa or Salpeter stellar mass-to-light ratio. Our analysis does not necessarily rule out a varying stellar mass-to-light ratio.

  5. Resazurin Live Cell Assay: Setup and Fine-Tuning for Reliable Cytotoxicity Results.

    PubMed

    Rodríguez-Corrales, José Á; Josan, Jatinder S

    2017-01-01

    In vitro cytotoxicity tests allow for fast and inexpensive screening of drug efficacy prior to in vivo studies. The resazurin assay (commercialized as Alamar Blue(®)) has been extensively utilized for this purpose in 2D and 3D cell cultures, and high-throughput screening. However, improper or lack of assay validation can generate unreliable results and limit reproducibility. Herein, we report a detailed protocol for the optimization of the resazurin assay to determine relevant analytical (limits of detection, quantification, and linear range) and biological (growth kinetics) parameters, and, thus, provide accurate cytotoxicity results. Fine-tuning of the resazurin assay will allow accurate and fast quantification of cytotoxicity for drug discovery. Unlike more complicated methods (e.g., mass spectrometry), this assay utilizes fluorescence spectroscopy and, thus, provides a less costly alternative to observe changes in the reductase proteome of the cells.

  6. A voltage-dependent chloride channel fine-tunes photosynthesis in plants

    PubMed Central

    Herdean, Andrei; Teardo, Enrico; Nilsson, Anders K.; Pfeil, Bernard E.; Johansson, Oskar N.; Ünnep, Renáta; Nagy, Gergely; Zsiros, Ottó; Dana, Somnath; Solymosi, Katalin; Garab, Győző; Szabó, Ildikó; Spetea, Cornelia; Lundin, Björn

    2016-01-01

    In natural habitats, plants frequently experience rapid changes in the intensity of sunlight. To cope with these changes and maximize growth, plants adjust photosynthetic light utilization in electron transport and photoprotective mechanisms. This involves a proton motive force (PMF) across the thylakoid membrane, postulated to be affected by unknown anion (Cl−) channels. Here we report that a bestrophin-like protein from Arabidopsis thaliana functions as a voltage-dependent Cl− channel in electrophysiological experiments. AtVCCN1 localizes to the thylakoid membrane, and fine-tunes PMF by anion influx into the lumen during illumination, adjusting electron transport and the photoprotective mechanisms. The activity of AtVCCN1 accelerates the activation of photoprotective mechanisms on sudden shifts to high light. Our results reveal that AtVCCN1, a member of a conserved anion channel family, acts as an early component in the rapid adjustment of photosynthesis in variable light environments. PMID:27216227

  7. Phase lock acquisition system having FLL for coarse tuning and PLL for fine tuning

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Caldwell, S. P.; Decker, M. J.; Jelen, R. A.

    1986-04-01

    The acquisition of phase lock to a reference frequency by a signal acquisition system is accomplished using a voltage controlled oscillator, a wideband frequency discriminator, a prepositioning circuit, and a phase lock loop. The voltage controlled oscillator is prepositioned within a loop bandwidth of the reference frequency by the prepositioning circuit and the wide band frequency discriminator which provide coarse tuning. The voltage controlled oscillator achieves phase lock with the reference frequency when it receives the fine tune signal from the phase lock loop. Using both the discriminator and the phase lock loop allows fast acquisition without the need to calibrate the voltage controlled oscillator. Since the discriminator pull-in range is much larger than the phase-lock loop bandwidth, the number of bits can be much smaller than in acquisition circuit using a digital prepositioning circuit alone.

  8. Fine-tuning the size and minimizing the noise of solid-state nanopores.

    PubMed

    Beamish, Eric; Kwok, Harold; Tabard-Cossa, Vincent; Godin, Michel

    2013-10-31

    Solid-state nanopores have emerged as a versatile tool for the characterization of single biomolecules such as nucleic acids and proteins. However, the creation of a nanopore in a thin insulating membrane remains challenging. Fabrication methods involving specialized focused electron beam systems can produce well-defined nanopores, but yield of reliable and low-noise nanopores in commercially available membranes remains low and size control is nontrivial. Here, the application of high electric fields to fine-tune the size of the nanopore while ensuring optimal low-noise performance is demonstrated. These short pulses of high electric field are used to produce a pristine electrical signal and allow for enlarging of nanopores with subnanometer precision upon prolonged exposure. This method is performed in situ in an aqueous environment using standard laboratory equipment, improving the yield and reproducibility of solid-state nanopore fabrication.

  9. Fine-tuning the Size and Minimizing the Noise of Solid-state Nanopores

    PubMed Central

    Beamish, Eric; Kwok, Harold; Tabard-Cossa, Vincent; Godin, Michel

    2013-01-01

    Solid-state nanopores have emerged as a versatile tool for the characterization of single biomolecules such as nucleic acids and proteins1. However, the creation of a nanopore in a thin insulating membrane remains challenging. Fabrication methods involving specialized focused electron beam systems can produce well-defined nanopores, but yield of reliable and low-noise nanopores in commercially available membranes remains low2,3 and size control is nontrivial4,5. Here, the application of high electric fields to fine-tune the size of the nanopore while ensuring optimal low-noise performance is demonstrated. These short pulses of high electric field are used to produce a pristine electrical signal and allow for enlarging of nanopores with subnanometer precision upon prolonged exposure. This method is performed in situ in an aqueous environment using standard laboratory equipment, improving the yield and reproducibility of solid-state nanopore fabrication. PMID:24300128

  10. Spontaneous fine-tuning to environment in many-species chemical reaction networks.

    PubMed

    Horowitz, Jordan M; England, Jeremy L

    2017-07-18

    A chemical mixture that continually absorbs work from its environment may exhibit steady-state chemical concentrations that deviate from their equilibrium values. Such behavior is particularly interesting in a scenario where the environmental work sources are relatively difficult to access, so that only the proper orchestration of many distinct catalytic actors can power the dissipative flux required to maintain a stable, far-from-equilibrium steady state. In this article, we study the dynamics of an in silico chemical network with random connectivity in an environment that makes strong thermodynamic forcing available only to rare combinations of chemical concentrations. We find that the long-time dynamics of such systems are biased toward states that exhibit a fine-tuned extremization of environmental forcing.

  11. Improved transgene expression fine-tuning in mammalian cells using a novel transcription-translation network.

    PubMed

    Malphettes, Laetitia; Fussenegger, Martin

    2006-08-05

    Following the discovery of RNA interference (RNAi) and related phenomena, novel regulatory processes, attributable to small non-protein-coding RNAs, continue to emerge. Capitalizing on the ability of artificial short interfering RNAs (siRNAs) to trigger degradation of specific target transcripts, and thereby silence desired gene expression, we designed and characterized a generic transcription-translation network in which it is possible to fine-tune heterologous protein production by coordinated transcription and translation interventions using macrolide and tetracycline antibiotics. Integration of siRNA-specific target sequences (TAGs) into the 5' or 3' untranslated regions (5'UTR, 3'UTR) of a desired constitutive transcription unit rendered transgene-encoded protein (erythropoietin, EPO; human placental alkaline phosphatase, SEAP; human vascular endothelial growth factor 121, VEGF(121)) production in mammalian cells responsive to siRNA levels that can be fine-tuned by macrolide-adjustable RNA polymerase II- or III-dependent promoters. Coupling of such macrolide-responsive siRNA-triggered translation control with tetracycline-responsive transcription of tagged transgene mRNAs created an antibiotic-adjustable two-input transcription-translation network characterized by elimination of detectable leaky expression with no reduction in maximum protein production levels. This transcription-translation network revealed transgene mRNA depletion to be dependent on siRNA and mRNA levels and that translation control was able to eliminate basal expression inherent to current transcription control modalities. Coupled transcription-translation circuitries have the potential to lead the way towards composite artificial regulatory networks, to enable complex therapeutic interventions in future biopharmaceutical manufacturing, gene therapy and tissue engineering initiatives.

  12. Synthetic Core Promoters as Universal Parts for Fine-Tuning Expression in Different Yeast Species.

    PubMed

    Portela, Rui M C; Vogl, Thomas; Kniely, Claudia; Fischer, Jasmin E; Oliveira, Rui; Glieder, Anton

    2017-03-17

    Synthetic biology and metabolic engineering experiments frequently require the fine-tuning of gene expression to balance and optimize protein levels of regulators or metabolic enzymes. A key concept of synthetic biology is the development of modular parts that can be used in different contexts. Here, we have applied a computational multifactor design approach to generate de novo synthetic core promoters and 5' untranslated regions (UTRs) for yeast cells. In contrast to upstream cis-regulatory modules (CRMs), core promoters are typically not subject to specific regulation, making them ideal engineering targets for gene expression fine-tuning. 112 synthetic core promoter sequences were designed on the basis of the sequence/function relationship of natural core promoters, nucleosome occupancy and the presence of short motifs. The synthetic core promoters were fused to the Pichia pastoris AOX1 CRM, and the resulting activity spanned more than a 200-fold range (0.3% to 70.6% of the wild type AOX1 level). The top-ten synthetic core promoters with highest activity were fused to six additional CRMs (three in P. pastoris and three in Saccharomyces cerevisiae). Inducible CRM constructs showed significantly higher activity than constitutive CRMs, reaching up to 176% of natural core promoters. Comparing the activity of the same synthetic core promoters fused to different CRMs revealed high correlations only for CRMs within the same organism. These data suggest that modularity is maintained to some extent but only within the same organism. Due to the conserved role of eukaryotic core promoters, this rational design concept may be transferred to other organisms as a generic engineering tool.

  13. Synthetic Core Promoters as Universal Parts for Fine-Tuning Expression in Different Yeast Species

    PubMed Central

    2016-01-01

    Synthetic biology and metabolic engineering experiments frequently require the fine-tuning of gene expression to balance and optimize protein levels of regulators or metabolic enzymes. A key concept of synthetic biology is the development of modular parts that can be used in different contexts. Here, we have applied a computational multifactor design approach to generate de novo synthetic core promoters and 5′ untranslated regions (UTRs) for yeast cells. In contrast to upstream cis-regulatory modules (CRMs), core promoters are typically not subject to specific regulation, making them ideal engineering targets for gene expression fine-tuning. 112 synthetic core promoter sequences were designed on the basis of the sequence/function relationship of natural core promoters, nucleosome occupancy and the presence of short motifs. The synthetic core promoters were fused to the Pichia pastoris AOX1 CRM, and the resulting activity spanned more than a 200-fold range (0.3% to 70.6% of the wild type AOX1 level). The top-ten synthetic core promoters with highest activity were fused to six additional CRMs (three in P. pastoris and three in Saccharomyces cerevisiae). Inducible CRM constructs showed significantly higher activity than constitutive CRMs, reaching up to 176% of natural core promoters. Comparing the activity of the same synthetic core promoters fused to different CRMs revealed high correlations only for CRMs within the same organism. These data suggest that modularity is maintained to some extent but only within the same organism. Due to the conserved role of eukaryotic core promoters, this rational design concept may be transferred to other organisms as a generic engineering tool. PMID:27973777

  14. Fine-Tuning Medium-of-Instruction Policy in Hong Kong: Acquisition of Language and Content-Based Subject Knowledge

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Poon, Anita Y. K.; Lau, Connie M. Y.

    2016-01-01

    Facing a dramatic decline in English standards over the past decade, the Hong Kong Government introduced the "Fine-tuning Medium of Instruction (MOI) policy" in 2010 to address the grievances arising from different sectors in the community. Integrating content and language has become popular in second/foreign language teaching in recent…

  15. Fine-Tuning Medium-of-Instruction Policy in Hong Kong: Acquisition of Language and Content-Based Subject Knowledge

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Poon, Anita Y. K.; Lau, Connie M. Y.

    2016-01-01

    Facing a dramatic decline in English standards over the past decade, the Hong Kong Government introduced the "Fine-tuning Medium of Instruction (MOI) policy" in 2010 to address the grievances arising from different sectors in the community. Integrating content and language has become popular in second/foreign language teaching in recent…

  16. Fine tuning of the quantum criticality in the heavy fermion superlattices CeRhIn5/YbRhIn5

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Endo, Ryota; Toda, Rintaro; Hanaoka, Yousuke; Shimozawa, Masaaki; Yamashita, Takuya; Shimoyama, Yusuke; Kasahara, Shigeru; Tokiwa, Yoshi; Kasahara, Yuiti; Shibauchi, Takasada; Terashima, Takahito; Matsuda, Yuji

    2015-03-01

    Bulk CeRhIn5 shows an antiferromagnetic order at TN = 3.8 K. Using molecular beam epitaxy, we fabricate artificial superlattices CeRhIn5 (m) /YbRhIn5(7) (m = 2, 3, 4, 5, 9) containing m layers of CeRhIn5 alternating with seven layers of the nonmagnetic metal YbRhIn5. With decreasing m, TN is seriously reduced and nearly vanishes at the m = 3, indicating the dimensional tuning of the quantum criticality. When the magnetic field is applied to m = 3 superlattice perpendicular to the plane, T-linear resistivity, a hallmark of non-Fermi liquid, persists down to 50 mK, demonstrating the fine tuning of the quantum critical point

  17. Fine-tuned PEGylation of chitosan to maintain optimal siRNA-nanoplex bioactivity.

    PubMed

    Guţoaia, Andra; Schuster, Liane; Margutti, Simona; Laufer, Stefan; Schlosshauer, Burkhard; Krastev, Rumen; Stoll, Dieter; Hartmann, Hanna

    2016-06-05

    Polyethylene glycol (PEG) is a widely used modification for drug delivery systems. It reduces undesired interaction with biological components, aggregation of complexes and serves as a hydrophilic linker of ligands for targeted drug delivery. However, PEGylation can also lead to undesired changes in physicochemical characteristics of chitosan/siRNA nanoplexes and hamper gene silencing. To address this conflicting issue, PEG-chitosan copolymers were synthesized with stepwise increasing degrees of PEG substitution (1.5% to 8.0%). Subsequently formed PEG-chitosan/siRNA nanoplexes were characterized physicochemically and biologically. The results showed that small ratios of chitosan PEGylation did not affect nanoplex stability and density. However, higher PEGylation ratios reduced nanoplex size and charge, as well as cell uptake and final siRNA knockdown efficiency. Therefore, we recommend fine-tuning of PEGylation ratios to generate PEG-chitosan/siRNA delivery systems with maximum bioactivity. The degree of PEGylation for chitosan/siRNA nanoplexes should be kept low in order to maintain optimal nanoplex efficiency.

  18. Fine-tuning the ubiquitin code at DNA double-strand breaks: deubiquitinating enzymes at work

    PubMed Central

    Citterio, Elisabetta

    2015-01-01

    Ubiquitination is a reversible protein modification broadly implicated in cellular functions. Signaling processes mediated by ubiquitin (ub) are crucial for the cellular response to DNA double-strand breaks (DSBs), one of the most dangerous types of DNA lesions. In particular, the DSB response critically relies on active ubiquitination by the RNF8 and RNF168 ub ligases at the chromatin, which is essential for proper DSB signaling and repair. How this pathway is fine-tuned and what the functional consequences are of its deregulation for genome integrity and tissue homeostasis are subject of intense investigation. One important regulatory mechanism is by reversal of substrate ubiquitination through the activity of specific deubiquitinating enzymes (DUBs), as supported by the implication of a growing number of DUBs in DNA damage response processes. Here, we discuss the current knowledge of how ub-mediated signaling at DSBs is controlled by DUBs, with main focus on DUBs targeting histone H2A and on their recent implication in stem cell biology and cancer. PMID:26442100

  19. Activity-dependent relocation of the axon initial segment fine-tunes neuronal excitability.

    PubMed

    Grubb, Matthew S; Burrone, Juan

    2010-06-24

    In neurons, the axon initial segment (AIS) is a specialized region near the start of the axon that is the site of action potential initiation. The precise location of the AIS varies across and within different neuronal types, and has been linked to cells' information-processing capabilities; however, the factors determining AIS position in individual neurons remain unknown. Here we show that changes in electrical activity can alter the location of the AIS. In dissociated hippocampal cultures, chronic depolarization with high extracellular potassium moves multiple components of the AIS, including voltage-gated sodium channels, up to 17 mum away from the soma of excitatory neurons. This movement reverses when neurons are returned to non-depolarized conditions, and depends on the activation of T- and/or L-type voltage-gated calcium channels. The AIS also moved distally when we combined long-term LED (light-emitting diode) photostimulation with sparse neuronal expression of the light-activated cation channel channelrhodopsin-2; here, burst patterning of activity was successful where regular stimulation at the same frequency failed. Furthermore, changes in AIS position correlate with alterations in current thresholds for action potential spiking. Our results show that neurons can regulate the position of an entire subcellular structure according to their ongoing levels and patterns of electrical activity. This novel form of activity-dependent plasticity may fine-tune neuronal excitability during development.

  20. Hydrothermal growth of ZnO nanowire arrays: fine tuning by precursor supersaturation

    DOE PAGES

    Yan, Danhua; Cen, Jiajie; Zhang, Wenrui; ...

    2016-12-20

    In this paper, we develop a technique that fine tunes the hydrothermal growth of ZnO nanowires to address the difficulties in controlling their growth in a conventional one-pot hydrothermal method. In our technique, precursors are separately and slowly supplied with the assistance of a syringe pump, through the entire course of the growth. Compared to the one-pot method, the significantly lowered supersaturation of precursors helps eliminating competitive homogeneous nucleation and improves the reproducibility. The supersaturation degree can be readily tuned by the precursor quantity and injection rate, thus forming ZnO nanowire arrays of various geometries and packing densities in amore » highly controllable fashion. The precise control of ZnO nanowire growth enables systematic studies on the correlation between the material's properties and its morphology. Finally, in this work, ZnO nanowire arrays of various morphologies are studied as photoelectrochemical (PEC) water splitting photoanodes, in which we establish clear correlations between the water splitting performance and the nanowires' size, shape, and packing density.« less

  1. Drosophila SETDB1 and caspase cooperatively fine-tune cell fate determination of sensory organ precursor.

    PubMed

    Shinoda, Natsuki; Obata, Fumiaki; Zhang, Liu; Miura, Masayuki

    2016-04-01

    Drosophila produce a constant number of mechanosensory bristles called macrochaetae (MC), which develop from sensory organ precursor (SOP) cells within a proneural cluster (PNC). However, what ensures the precise determination of SOP cells remains to be elucidated. In this study, we conducted RNAi screening in PNC for genes involved in epigenetic regulation. We identified a H3K9 histone methyltransferase, SETDB1/eggless, as a regulator of SOP development. Knockdown of SETDB1 in PNC led to additional SOPs. We further tested the relationship between SETDB1 and non-apoptotic function of caspase on SOP development. Reinforcing caspase activation by heterozygous Drosophila inhibitor of apoptosis protein 1 (DIAP1) mutation rescued ectopic SOP development caused by SETDB1 knockdown. Knockdown of SETDB1, however, had little effect on caspase activity. Simultaneous loss of SETDB1 and caspase activity resulted in further increase in MC, indicating that the two components work cooperatively. Our study suggests the fine-tuning mechanisms for SOP development by epigenetic methyltransferase and non-apoptotic caspase function.

  2. Finely tuning MOFs towards high-performance post-combustion CO2 capture materials.

    PubMed

    Wang, Qian; Bai, Junfeng; Lu, Zhiyong; Pan, Yi; You, Xiaozeng

    2016-01-11

    CO2 capture science and technology, particularly for the post-combustion CO2 capture, has become one of very important research fields, due to great concern of global warming. Metal-organic frameworks (MOFs) with a unique feature of structural fine-tunability, unlike the traditional porous solid materials, can provide many and powerful platforms to explore high-performance adsorbents for post-combustion CO2 capture. Until now, several strategies for finely tuning MOF structures have been developed, in which either the larger quadrupole moment and polarizability of CO2 are considered: metal ion change (I), functional groups attachment (II) and functional group insertion (III), vary the electronic nature of the pore surface; or targeting the smaller kinetic diameter of CO2 over N2 is focused on: framework interpenetration (IV), ligand shortening (V) and coordination site shifting (VI) contract the pore size of frameworks to improve their CO2 capture properties. In this review, from the viewpoint of synthetic materials scientists/chemists, we would like to introduce and summarize these strategies based upon recent work published by other groups and ourselves.

  3. Fine tuning of social integration by two myrmecophiles of the ponerine army ant, Leptogenys distinguenda.

    PubMed

    Witte, Volker; Foitzik, Susanne; Hashim, Rosli; Maschwitz, Ulrich; Schulz, Stefan

    2009-03-01

    Myrmecophiles are animals that live in close association with ants and that frequently develop elaborate mechanisms to infiltrate their well-defended host societies. We compare the social integration strategies of two myrmecophilic species, the spider, Gamasomorpha maschwitzi, and the newly described silverfish, Malayatelura ponerophila gen. n. sp. n., into colonies of the ponerine army ant, Leptogenys distinguenda (Emery) (Hymenoptera: Formicidae). Both symbionts use chemical mimicry through adoption of host cuticular hydrocarbons. Exchange experiments between L. distinguenda and an undetermined Leptogenys species demonstrate that reduced aggression toward alien ants and increased social acceptance occurred with individuals of higher chemical similarity in their cuticular hydrocarbon profiles. We found striking differences in chemical and behavioral strategies between the two myrmecophiles. Spider cuticular hydrocarbon profiles were chemically less similar to the host than silverfish profiles were. Nevertheless, spiders received significantly fewer attacks from host ants and survived longer in laboratory colonies, whereas silverfish were treated with high aggression and were killed more frequently. When discovered and confronted by the host, silverfish tended to escape and were chased aggressively, whereas spiders remained in contact with the confronting host ant until aggression ceased. Thus, spiders relied less on chemical mimicry but were nevertheless accepted more frequently by the host on the basis of behavioral mechanisms. These findings give insights into the fine tuning of social integration mechanisms and show the significance of qualitative differences among strategies.

  4. Tissue-Specific Regulation of Gibberellin Signaling Fine-Tunes Arabidopsis Iron-Deficiency Responses.

    PubMed

    Wild, Michael; Davière, Jean-Michel; Regnault, Thomas; Sakvarelidze-Achard, Lali; Carrera, Esther; Lopez Diaz, Isabel; Cayrel, Anne; Dubeaux, Guillaume; Vert, Grégory; Achard, Patrick

    2016-04-18

    Iron is an essential element for most living organisms. Plants acquire iron from the rhizosphere and have evolved different biochemical and developmental responses to adapt to a low-iron environment. In Arabidopsis, FIT encodes a basic helix-loop-helix transcription factor that activates the expression of iron-uptake genes in root epidermis upon iron deficiency. Here, we report that the gibberellin (GA)-signaling DELLA repressors contribute substantially in the adaptive responses to iron-deficient conditions. When iron availability decreases, DELLAs accumulate in the root meristem, thereby restraining root growth, while being progressively excluded from epidermal cells in the root differentiation zone. Such DELLA exclusion from the site of iron acquisition relieves FIT from DELLA-dependent inhibition and therefore promotes iron uptake. Consistent with this mechanism, expression of a non-GA-degradable DELLA mutant protein in root epidermis interferes with iron acquisition. Hence, spatial distribution of DELLAs in roots is essential to fine-tune the adaptive responses to iron availability.

  5. The Parametric Study and Fine-Tuning of Bow-Tie Slot Antenna with Loaded Stub

    PubMed Central

    2017-01-01

    A printed Bow-Tie slot antenna with loaded stub is proposed and the effects of changing the dimensions of the slot area, the stub and load sizes are considered in this paper. These parameters have a considerable effect on the antenna characteristics as well as its performance. An in-depth parametric study of these dimensions is presented. This paper proposes the necessary conditions for initial approximation of dimensions needed to design this antenna. In order to achieve the desired performance of the antenna fine tuning of all sizes of these parameters is required. The parametric studies used in this paper provide proper trends for initiation and tuning the design. A prototype of the antenna for 1.7GHz to 2.6GHz band is fabricated. Measurements conducted verify that the designed antenna has wideband characteristics with 50% bandwidth around the center frequency of 2.1GHz. Conducted measurements for reflection coefficient (S11) and radiation pattern also validate our simulation results. PMID:28114354

  6. The Parametric Study and Fine-Tuning of Bow-Tie Slot Antenna with Loaded Stub.

    PubMed

    Shafiei, M M; Moghavvemi, Mahmoud; Wan Mahadi, Wan Nor Liza

    2017-01-01

    A printed Bow-Tie slot antenna with loaded stub is proposed and the effects of changing the dimensions of the slot area, the stub and load sizes are considered in this paper. These parameters have a considerable effect on the antenna characteristics as well as its performance. An in-depth parametric study of these dimensions is presented. This paper proposes the necessary conditions for initial approximation of dimensions needed to design this antenna. In order to achieve the desired performance of the antenna fine tuning of all sizes of these parameters is required. The parametric studies used in this paper provide proper trends for initiation and tuning the design. A prototype of the antenna for 1.7GHz to 2.6GHz band is fabricated. Measurements conducted verify that the designed antenna has wideband characteristics with 50% bandwidth around the center frequency of 2.1GHz. Conducted measurements for reflection coefficient (S11) and radiation pattern also validate our simulation results.

  7. Hydrothermal growth of ZnO nanowire arrays: fine tuning by precursor supersaturation

    SciTech Connect

    Yan, Danhua; Cen, Jiajie; Zhang, Wenrui; Orlov, Alexander; Liu, Mingzhao

    2016-12-20

    In this paper, we develop a technique that fine tunes the hydrothermal growth of ZnO nanowires to address the difficulties in controlling their growth in a conventional one-pot hydrothermal method. In our technique, precursors are separately and slowly supplied with the assistance of a syringe pump, through the entire course of the growth. Compared to the one-pot method, the significantly lowered supersaturation of precursors helps eliminating competitive homogeneous nucleation and improves the reproducibility. The supersaturation degree can be readily tuned by the precursor quantity and injection rate, thus forming ZnO nanowire arrays of various geometries and packing densities in a highly controllable fashion. The precise control of ZnO nanowire growth enables systematic studies on the correlation between the material's properties and its morphology. Finally, in this work, ZnO nanowire arrays of various morphologies are studied as photoelectrochemical (PEC) water splitting photoanodes, in which we establish clear correlations between the water splitting performance and the nanowires' size, shape, and packing density.

  8. Lidar Applications for Fine Tuning Forest Inventory Estimates in the Nonforest and Understory Carbon Pools

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Johnson, K. D.; Birdsey, R.; Huang, W.; Dolan, K. A.; Finley, A. O.; Domke, G. M.; Russell, M.; ONeil-Dunne, J.; Dubayah, R.; Hurtt, G. C.

    2016-12-01

    The Forest Inventory and Analysis (FIA) program within the USDA Forest Service maintains permanent sample plots that provide valuable data for robust and consistent estimates of major forest carbon pools in the United States, and are currently used for official estimates to the greenhouse gas inventories compiled by EPA and reported to the UNFCCC and other entities. Nonetheless, there exist some carbon accounting gaps and indirectly measured pools that may be improved. Carbon in both "trees outside forest" and the understory is not currently measured directly in FIA plots. Understory carbon is predicted as a portion of total aboveground biomass, rather than from measurements of shrub, forbs or graminoid mass. In the current study, lidar data obtained at FIA plot locations was used to predict carbon in "trees outside forest" and the understory in the forests of Pennsylvania, Maryland, and Delaware, USA, potentially improving current estimates. Results indicate that carbon in "trees outside forests" represent a significant and under-estimated stock in this region. Understory carbon remains difficult to quantify at the plot level, but meaningful relationships with lidar canopy height (a proxy for stand succession) suggest that reliable population estimates may be aided by lidar data. Fine tuning these estimates is important, not only for improving the accuracy of estimates, but also for reconciling estimates with independently created forest carbon maps.

  9. Hypothermia Promotes Interleukin-22 Expression and Fine-Tunes Its Biological Activity.

    PubMed

    Chichelnitskiy, Evgeny; Himmelseher, Britta; Bachmann, Malte; Pfeilschifter, Josef; Mühl, Heiko

    2017-01-01

    Disturbed homeostasis as a result of tissue stress can provoke leukocyte responses enabling recovery. Since mild hypothermia displays specific clinically relevant tissue-protective properties and interleukin (IL)-22 promotes healing at host/environment interfaces, effects of lowered ambient temperature on IL-22 were studied. We demonstrate that a 5-h exposure of endotoxemic mice to 4°C reduces body temperature by 5.0° and enhances splenic and colonic il22 gene expression. In contrast, tumor necrosis factor-α and IL-17A were not increased. In vivo data on IL-22 were corroborated using murine splenocytes and human peripheral blood mononuclear cells (PBMC) cultured upon 33°C and polyclonal T cell activation. Upregulation by mild hypothermia of largely T-cell-derived IL-22 in PBMC required monocytes and associated with enhanced nuclear T-cell nuclear factor of activated T cells (NFAT)-c2. Notably, NFAT antagonism by cyclosporin A or FK506 impaired IL-22 upregulation at normothermia and entirely prevented its enhanced expression upon hypothermic culture conditions. Data suggest that intact NFAT signaling is required for efficient IL-22 induction upon normothermic and hypothermic conditions. Hypothermia furthermore boosted early signal transducer and activator of transcription 3 activation by IL-22 and shaped downstream gene expression in epithelial-like cells. Altogether, data indicate that hypothermia supports and fine-tunes IL-22 production/action, which may contribute to regulatory properties of low ambient temperature.

  10. Fine-tuned Remote Laser Welding of Aluminum to Copper with Local Beam Oscillation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Fetzer, Florian; Jarwitz, Michael; Stritt, Peter; Weber, Rudolf; Graf, Thomas

    Local beam oscillation in remote laser welding of aluminum to copper was investigated. Sheets of 1 mm thickness were welded in overlap configuration with aluminum as top material. The laser beam was scanned in a sinusoidal mode perpendicular to the direction of feed and the influence of the oscillation parameters frequency and amplitude on the weld geometry was investigated. Scanning frequencies up to 1 kHz and oscillation amplitudes in the range from 0.25 mm to 1 mm were examined. Throughout the experiments the laser power and the feed rate were kept constant. A decrease of welding depth with amplitude and frequency is found. The scanning amplitude had a strong influence and allowed coarse setting of the welding depth into the lower material, while the frequency allowed fine tuning in the order of 10% of the obtained depth. The oscillation parameters were found to act differently on the aluminum sheet compared to copper sheet regarding the amount of fused material. It is possible to influence the geometry of the fused zones separately for both sheets. Therefore the average composition in the weld can be set with high precision via the oscillation parameters. A setting of the generated intermetallics in the weld zone is possible without adjustment of laser power and feed rate.

  11. Statistical-Mechanical Analysis of Pre-training and Fine Tuning in Deep Learning

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ohzeki, Masayuki

    2015-03-01

    In this paper, we present a statistical-mechanical analysis of deep learning. We elucidate some of the essential components of deep learning — pre-training by unsupervised learning and fine tuning by supervised learning. We formulate the extraction of features from the training data as a margin criterion in a high-dimensional feature-vector space. The self-organized classifier is then supplied with small amounts of labelled data, as in deep learning. Although we employ a simple single-layer perceptron model, rather than directly analyzing a multi-layer neural network, we find a nontrivial phase transition that is dependent on the number of unlabelled data in the generalization error of the resultant classifier. In this sense, we evaluate the efficacy of the unsupervised learning component of deep learning. The analysis is performed by the replica method, which is a sophisticated tool in statistical mechanics. We validate our result in the manner of deep learning, using a simple iterative algorithm to learn the weight vector on the basis of belief propagation.

  12. Fungal Endophytes as a Metabolic Fine-Tuning Regulator for Wine Grape

    PubMed Central

    Huang, Zhi-Yu; Yang, Wei-Xi; Zhang, Han-Bo; Huang, Li-Hua; Ren, An-Yun; Shan, Hui

    2016-01-01

    Endophytes proved to exert multiple effects on host plants, including growth promotion, stress resistance. However, whether endophytes have a role in metabolites shaping of grape has not been fully understood. Eight endophytic fungal strains which originally isolated from grapevines were re-inoculated to field-grown grapevines in this study, and their effects on both leaves and berries of grapevines at maturity stage were assessed, with special focused on secondary metabolites and antioxidant activities. High-density inoculation of all these endophytic fungal strains modified the physio-chemical status of grapevine to different degrees. Fungal inoculations promoted the content of reducing sugar (RS), total flavonoids (TF), total phenols (TPh), trans-resveratrol (Res) and activities of phenylalanine ammonia-lyase (PAL), in both leaves and berries of grapevine. Inoculation of endophytic fungal strains, CXB-11 (Nigrospora sp.) and CXC-13 (Fusarium sp.) conferred greater promotion effects in grape metabolic re-shaping, compared to other used fungal strains. Additionally, inoculation of different strains of fungal endophytes led to establish different metabolites patterns of wine grape. The work implies the possibility of using endophytic fungi as fine-tuning regulator to shape the quality and character of wine grape. PMID:27656886

  13. Design and Fine-tuning Redox Potentials of Metalloproteins Involved in Electron Transfer in Bioenergetics

    PubMed Central

    Hosseinzadeh, Parisa; Lu, Yi

    2015-01-01

    Redox potentials are the major contributors to controlling the ET rates and thus regulating ET processes in the bioenergetics. To maximize the efficiency of the ET process, one needs to master the art of tuning of the E°, especially metalloproteins, as they represent major classes of ET proteins. In this review, we first describe the importance of tuning E° of ET centers, including the metalloproteins described above, and its role in regulating the ET in bioenergetic processes including photosynthesis and respiration. The major focus of this review is to summarize recent work in designing the ET centers, namely cupredoxins, cytochromes, and iron-sulfur proteins, and examples in design of protein networks involved these ET centers. We then discuss the factors that affect redox potentials of these ET centers including metal ion, the ligands to metal center and interactions beyond the primary ligand, especially non-covalent secondary coordination sphere interactions. We gave examples of strategies to fine-tune the redox potential using both natural and unnatural amino acids and native and nonnative cofactors. Several case studies are used to illustrate recent successes in this area. Outlooks for future endeavors are also provided. PMID:26301482

  14. Finely tuned response of native prey to an invasive predator in a freshwater system.

    PubMed

    Bourdeau, Paul E; Pangle, Kevin L; Reed, Emily M; Peacor, Scott D

    2013-07-01

    Lack of shared evolutionary history reduces the expectation that native prey will detect and respond to invasive predators. Four mechanisms may explain the adaptive response that is nevertheless seen in various systems: prey may perceive the invasive predator through cue similarity with preexisting predators, cues of conspecifics eaten by the invasive predator, a learned response based on experience with the invasive predator (e.g., cue association), and cues from the invasive predator that are specific to it. We performed laboratory experiments in which zooplankton (Daphnia mendotae) responded adaptively to the zooplanktivore Bythotrephes longimanus (migrating downward), showed no response to taxonomically similar predatory cladocerans, and responded adaptively to more taxonomically distant native fish (migrating downward) and native shrimp (migrating upward). Conspecific cues associated with Bythotrephes predation actually reduced the response of D. mendotae to Bythotrephes. Combined with previous experiments that rule out learning, our experiments rule out the first three mechanisms above, demonstrating that D. mendotae respond to cues specific to and produced directly by Bythotrephes. This finely tuned response may be retained from an ancestral species that coevolved with Bythotrephes in its native range, or may have rapidly evolved due to strong selection by the invasive predator.

  15. Redirecting abiraterone metabolism to fine-tune prostate cancer anti-androgen therapy.

    PubMed

    Li, Zhenfei; Alyamani, Mohammad; Li, Jianneng; Rogacki, Kevin; Abazeed, Mohamed; Upadhyay, Sunil K; Balk, Steven P; Taplin, Mary-Ellen; Auchus, Richard J; Sharifi, Nima

    2016-05-26

    Abiraterone blocks androgen synthesis and prolongs survival in patients with castration-resistant prostate cancer, which is otherwise driven by intratumoral androgen synthesis. Abiraterone is metabolized in patients to Δ(4)-abiraterone (D4A), which has even greater anti-tumour activity and is structurally similar to endogenous steroidal 5α-reductase substrates, such as testosterone. Here, we show that D4A is converted to at least three 5α-reduced and three 5β-reduced metabolites in human serum. The initial 5α-reduced metabolite, 3-keto-5α-abiraterone, is present at higher concentrations than D4A in patients with prostate cancer taking abiraterone, and is an androgen receptor agonist, which promotes prostate cancer progression. In a clinical trial of abiraterone alone, followed by abiraterone plus dutasteride (a 5α-reductase inhibitor), 3-keto-5α-abiraterone and downstream metabolites were depleted by the addition of dutasteride, while D4A concentrations rose, showing that dutasteride effectively blocks production of a tumour-promoting metabolite and permits D4A accumulation. Furthermore, dutasteride did not deplete the three 5β-reduced metabolites, which were also clinically detectable, demonstrating the specific biochemical effects of pharmacological 5α-reductase inhibition on abiraterone metabolism. Our findings suggest a previously unappreciated and biochemically specific method of clinically fine-tuning abiraterone metabolism to optimize therapy.

  16. Community-integrated omics links dominance of a microbial generalist to fine-tuned resource usage

    PubMed Central

    Muller, Emilie E. L.; Pinel, Nicolás; Laczny, Cédric C.; Hoopmann, Michael R.; Narayanasamy, Shaman; Lebrun, Laura A.; Roume, Hugo; Lin, Jake; May, Patrick; Hicks, Nathan D.; Heintz-Buschart, Anna; Wampach, Linda; Liu, Cindy M.; Price, Lance B.; Gillece, John D.; Guignard, Cédric; Schupp, James M.; Vlassis, Nikos; Baliga, Nitin S.; Moritz, Robert L.; Keim, Paul S.; Wilmes, Paul

    2014-01-01

    Microbial communities are complex and dynamic systems that are primarily structured according to their members’ ecological niches. To investigate how niche breadth (generalist versus specialist lifestyle strategies) relates to ecological success, we develop and apply an integrative workflow for the multi-omic analysis of oleaginous mixed microbial communities from a biological wastewater treatment plant. Time- and space-resolved coupled metabolomic and taxonomic analyses demonstrate that the community-wide lipid accumulation phenotype is associated with the dominance of the generalist bacterium Candidatus Microthrix spp. By integrating population-level genomic reconstructions (reflecting fundamental niches) with transcriptomic and proteomic data (realised niches), we identify finely tuned gene expression governing resource usage by Candidatus Microthrix parvicella over time. Moreover, our results indicate that the fluctuating environmental conditions constrain the accumulation of genetic variation in Candidatus Microthrix parvicella likely due to fitness trade-offs. Based on our observations, niche breadth has to be considered as an important factor for understanding the evolutionary processes governing (microbial) population sizes and structures in situ. PMID:25424998

  17. Core formation in dwarf haloes with self-interacting dark matter: no fine-tuning necessary

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Elbert, Oliver D.; Bullock, James S.; Garrison-Kimmel, Shea; Rocha, Miguel; Oñorbe, Jose; Peter, Annika H. G.

    2015-10-01

    We investigate the effect of self-interacting dark matter (SIDM) on the density profiles of Vmax ≃ 40km s-1 isolated dwarf dark matter haloes - the scale of relevance for the too big to fail problem (TBTF) - using very high resolution cosmological zoom simulations. Each halo has millions of particles within its virial radius. We find that SIDM models with cross-sections per unit mass spanning the range σ/m = 0.5-50 cm2 g-1 alleviate TBTF and produce constant-density cores of size 300-1000 pc, comparable to the half-light radii of M⋆ ˜ 105 - 7 M⊙ dwarfs. The largest, lowest density cores develop for cross-sections in the middle of this range, σ/m ˜ 5-10 cm2 g-1. Our largest SIDM cross-section run (σ/m = 50 cm2 g-1) develops a slightly denser core owing to mild core-collapse behaviour, but it remains less dense than the cold dark matter case and retains a constant-density core profile. Our work suggests that SIDM cross-sections as large or larger than 50 cm2 g-1 remain viable on velocity scales of dwarf galaxies (vrms ˜ 40 km s-1). The range of SIDM cross-sections that alleviate TBTF and the cusp/core problem spans at least two orders of magnitude and therefore need not be particularly fine-tuned.

  18. Fine-tuning optical and electronic properties of graphene oxide for highly efficient perovskite solar cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Liu, Tongfa; Kim, Dongcheon; Han, Hongwei; Mohd Yusoff, Abd. Rashid Bin; Jang, Jin

    2015-06-01

    Simplifying the process of fine-tuning the electronic and optical properties of graphene oxide (GO) is of importance in order to fully utilize it as the hole interfacial layer (HIL). We introduced silver trifluoromethanesulfonate (AgOTf), an inorganic chemical dopant, that tunes and controls the properties of single-layered GO films synthesized by chemical vapor deposition. The morphology, work function, mobility, sheet resistance, and transmittance of the GO film were systematically tuned by various doping concentrations. We further developed a solution-processable low-temperature hole interfacial layer (HIL) poly(3,4-ethylenedioxythiophene):poly(styrenesulfonate) (PEDOT:PSS):AgOTf-doped GO HIL in highly efficient perovskite solar cells. The PEDOT:PSS:AgOTf-doped GO HIL grants the desirable charge-collection in the HIL allowing the entire device to be prepared at temperatures less than 120 °C. The fabricated perovskite solar cells utilize a rigid substrate and demonstrate compelling photovoltaic performance with a power conversion efficiency (PCE) of 11.90%. Moreover, flexible devices prepared using a polyethylene terephthalate (PET)/ITO demonstrate a PCE of 9.67%, while ITO-free flexible devices adopting PET/aluminum doped zinc oxide (AZO)/silver (Ag)/AZO demonstrate a PCE of 7.97%. This study shows that the PEDOT:PSS:AgOTf-doped GO HIL has significant potential to contribute to the development of low-cost solar cells.

  19. Fine-tuning optical and electronic properties of graphene oxide for highly efficient perovskite solar cells.

    PubMed

    Liu, Tongfa; Kim, Dongcheon; Han, Hongwei; Yusoff, Abd Rashid bin Mohd; Jang, Jin

    2015-06-28

    Simplifying the process of fine-tuning the electronic and optical properties of graphene oxide (GO) is of importance in order to fully utilize it as the hole interfacial layer (HIL). We introduced silver trifluoromethanesulfonate (AgOTf), an inorganic chemical dopant, that tunes and controls the properties of single-layered GO films synthesized by chemical vapor deposition. The morphology, work function, mobility, sheet resistance, and transmittance of the GO film were systematically tuned by various doping concentrations. We further developed a solution-processable low-temperature hole interfacial layer (HIL) poly(3,4-ethylenedioxythiophene):poly(styrenesulfonate) ( PSS):AgOTf-doped GO HIL in highly efficient perovskite solar cells. The PSS:AgOTf-doped GO HIL grants the desirable charge-collection in the HIL allowing the entire device to be prepared at temperatures less than 120 °C. The fabricated perovskite solar cells utilize a rigid substrate and demonstrate compelling photovoltaic performance with a power conversion efficiency (PCE) of 11.90%. Moreover, flexible devices prepared using a polyethylene terephthalate (PET)/ITO demonstrate a PCE of 9.67%, while ITO-free flexible devices adopting PET/aluminum doped zinc oxide (AZO)/silver (Ag)/AZO demonstrate a PCE of 7.97%. This study shows that the PSS:AgOTf-doped GO HIL has significant potential to contribute to the development of low-cost solar cells.

  20. Neuronal Target Identification Requires AHA-1-Mediated Fine-Tuning of Wnt Signaling in C. elegans

    PubMed Central

    Zhang, Jingyan; Li, Xia; Jevince, Angela R.; Guan, Liying; Wang, Jiaming; Hall, David H.; Huang, Xun; Ding, Mei

    2013-01-01

    Electrical synaptic transmission through gap junctions is a vital mode of intercellular communication in the nervous system. The mechanism by which reciprocal target cells find each other during the formation of gap junctions, however, is poorly understood. Here we show that gap junctions are formed between BDU interneurons and PLM mechanoreceptors in C. elegans and the connectivity of BDU with PLM is influenced by Wnt signaling. We further identified two PAS-bHLH family transcription factors, AHA-1 and AHR-1, which function cell-autonomously within BDU and PLM to facilitate the target identification process. aha-1 and ahr-1 act genetically upstream of cam-1. CAM-1, a membrane-bound receptor tyrosine kinase, is present on both BDU and PLM cells and likely serves as a Wnt antagonist. By binding to a cis-regulatory element in the cam-1 promoter, AHA-1 enhances cam-1 transcription. Our study reveals a Wnt-dependent fine-tuning mechanism that is crucial for mutual target cell identification during the formation of gap junction connections. PMID:23825972

  1. Fine tuning of optical signals in nanoporous anodic alumina photonic crystals by apodized sinusoidal pulse anodisation.

    PubMed

    Santos, Abel; Law, Cheryl Suwen; Chin Lei, Dominique Wong; Pereira, Taj; Losic, Dusan

    2016-11-03

    In this study, we present an advanced nanofabrication approach to produce gradient-index photonic crystal structures based on nanoporous anodic alumina. An apodization strategy is for the first time applied to a sinusoidal pulse anodisation process in order to engineer the photonic stop band of nanoporous anodic alumina (NAA) in depth. Four apodization functions are explored, including linear positive, linear negative, logarithmic positive and logarithmic negative, with the aim of finely tuning the characteristic photonic stop band of these photonic crystal structures. We systematically analyse the effect of the amplitude difference (from 0.105 to 0.840 mA cm(-2)), the pore widening time (from 0 to 6 min), the anodisation period (from 650 to 950 s) and the anodisation time (from 15 to 30 h) on the quality and the position of the characteristic photonic stop band and the interferometric colour of these photonic crystal structures using the aforementioned apodization functions. Our results reveal that a logarithmic negative apodisation function is the most optimal approach to obtain unprecedented well-resolved and narrow photonic stop bands across the UV-visible-NIR spectrum of NAA-based gradient-index photonic crystals. Our study establishes a fully comprehensive rationale towards the development of unique NAA-based photonic crystal structures with finely engineered optical properties for advanced photonic devices such as ultra-sensitive optical sensors, selective optical filters and all-optical platforms for quantum computing.

  2. Calmodulin-mediated signal transduction pathways in Arabidopsis are fine-tuned by methylation.

    PubMed

    Banerjee, Joydeep; Magnani, Roberta; Nair, Meera; Dirk, Lynnette M; DeBolt, Seth; Maiti, Indu B; Houtz, Robert L

    2013-11-01

    Calmodulin N-methyltransferase (CaM KMT) is an evolutionarily conserved enzyme in eukaryotes that transfers three methyl groups to a highly conserved lysyl residue at position 115 in calmodulin (CaM). We sought to elucidate whether the methylation status of CaM plays a role in CaM-mediated signaling pathways by gene expression analyses of CaM KMT and phenotypic characterization of Arabidopsis thaliana lines wherein CaM KMT was overexpressed (OX), partially silenced, or knocked out. CaM KMT was expressed in discreet spatial and tissue-specific patterns, most notably in root tips, floral buds, stamens, apical meristems, and germinating seeds. Analysis of transgenic plants with genetic dysfunction in CaM KMT revealed a link between the methylation status of CaM and root length. Plants with suppressed CaM methylation had longer roots and CaM KMT OX lines had shorter roots than wild type (Columbia-0). CaM KMT was also found to influence the root radial developmental program. Protein microarray analyses revealed a number of proteins with specificity for methylated forms of CaM, providing candidate functional intermediates between the observed phenotypes and the target pathways. This work demonstrates that the functionality of the large CaM family in plants is fine-tuned by an overarching methylation mechanism.

  3. Calmodulin-Mediated Signal Transduction Pathways in Arabidopsis Are Fine-Tuned by Methylation[W

    PubMed Central

    Banerjee, Joydeep; Magnani, Roberta; Nair, Meera; Dirk, Lynnette M.; DeBolt, Seth; Maiti, Indu B.; Houtz, Robert L.

    2013-01-01

    Calmodulin N-methyltransferase (CaM KMT) is an evolutionarily conserved enzyme in eukaryotes that transfers three methyl groups to a highly conserved lysyl residue at position 115 in calmodulin (CaM). We sought to elucidate whether the methylation status of CaM plays a role in CaM-mediated signaling pathways by gene expression analyses of CaM KMT and phenotypic characterization of Arabidopsis thaliana lines wherein CaM KMT was overexpressed (OX), partially silenced, or knocked out. CaM KMT was expressed in discreet spatial and tissue-specific patterns, most notably in root tips, floral buds, stamens, apical meristems, and germinating seeds. Analysis of transgenic plants with genetic dysfunction in CaM KMT revealed a link between the methylation status of CaM and root length. Plants with suppressed CaM methylation had longer roots and CaM KMT OX lines had shorter roots than wild type (Columbia-0). CaM KMT was also found to influence the root radial developmental program. Protein microarray analyses revealed a number of proteins with specificity for methylated forms of CaM, providing candidate functional intermediates between the observed phenotypes and the target pathways. This work demonstrates that the functionality of the large CaM family in plants is fine-tuned by an overarching methylation mechanism. PMID:24285794

  4. Maternal expression of communicative intentions and pragmatic fine tuning in early infancy.

    PubMed

    Rivero, Magda

    2010-12-01

    This study focuses on pragmatic characteristics of infant-directed speech and pragmatic fine tuning during the first 18 months of life. The subjects of the study were a mother-child dyad involved in a longitudinal/observational study in a familial context. Audiovisual recordings were transcribed according to the conventions of the Child Language Data Exchange System (MacWhinney, 2000; MacWhinney & Snow, 1990). The Ninio and Wheeler's (1988) system for coding communicative intentions was adapted. The results of this research show that most of the communicative exchanges identified at 14, 20 and 32 months by Snow, Pan, Imbens-Bailey, and Herman (1996) appear in mother-child interaction from the beginning, while other communicative interchanges appear later. With respect to speech acts, the results highlight, from an early age, the general tendencies discussed by Snow et al. and some novelties. Interestingly, changes in some pragmatic measures were identified around 8 months of age, and the appearance of new communicative interchanges also took place around this age. These changes are interpreted as maternal adjustments to the child's communicative competence.

  5. Redirecting abiraterone metabolism to fine tune prostate cancer anti-androgen therapy

    PubMed Central

    Li, Zhenfei; Alyamani, Mohammad; Li, Jianneng; Rogacki, Kevin; Abazeed, Mohamed; Upadhyay, Sunil K.; Balk, Steven P.; Taplin, Mary-Ellen; Auchus, Richard J.; Sharifi, Nima

    2016-01-01

    Abiraterone blocks androgen synthesis and prolongs survival in castration-resistant prostate cancer, which is otherwise driven by intratumoral androgen synthesis1,2. Abiraterone is metabolized in patients to D4A, which has even greater anti-tumor activity and structural similarities to endogenous steroidal 5α-reductase substrates, such as testosterone3. Here, we show that D4A is converted to at least 3 5α-reduced and 3 5β-reduced metabolites. The initial 5α-reduced metabolite, 3-keto-5α-abi, is more abundant than D4A in patients with prostate cancer taking abiraterone, and is an androgen receptor (AR) agonist, which promotes prostate cancer progression. In a clinical trial of abiraterone alone, followed by abiraterone plus dutasteride (a 5α-reductase inhibitor), 3-keto-5α-abi and downstream metabolites are depleted, while D4A concentrations rise, effectively blocking production of a tumor-promoting metabolite and permitting D4A accumulation. Furthermore, dutasteride does not deplete three 5β-reduced metabolites, which were also clinically detectable, demonstrating the specific biochemical effects of pharmacologic 5α-reductase inhibition on abiraterone metabolism. Our findings suggest a previously unappreciated and biochemically specific method of clinically fine-tuning abiraterone metabolism to optimize therapy. PMID:27225130

  6. Maximizing T2-exchange in Dy3+DOTA-(amide)X chelates: Fine-tuning the water molecule exchange rate for enhanced T2 contrast in MRI

    PubMed Central

    Soesbe, Todd C.; Ratnakar, S. James; Milne, Mark; Zhang, Shanrong; Do, Quyen N.; Kovacs, Zoltan; Sherry, A. Dean

    2014-01-01

    Purpose The water molecule exchange rates in a series of DyDOTA-(amide)X chelates were fine-tuned to maximize the effects of T2-exchange line broadening and improve T2 contrast. Methods Four DyDOTA-(amide)X chelates having a variable number of glycinate side-arms were prepared and characterized as T2-exchange agents. The non-exchanging DyTETA chelate was also used to measure the bulk water T2 reduction due solely to T2*. The total transverse relaxivity (r2tot) at 22, 37, and 52 °C for each chelate was measured in vitro at 9.4 T (400 MHz) by fitting plots of total T2−1 versus concentration. The water molecule exchange rates for each complex were measured by fitting 17O line-width versus temperature data taken at 9.4 T (54.3 MHz). Results The measured transverse relaxivities due to water molecule exchange (r2ex) and bound water lifetimes (τM) were in excellent agreement with Swift-Connick theory, with DyDOTA-(gly)3 giving the largest r2ex = 11.8 s−1 mM−1 at 37 °C. Conclusion By fine-tuning the water molecule exchange rate at 37 °C, the transverse relaxivity has been increased by 2 to 30 times compared to previously studied Dy3+-based chelates. Polymerization or dendrimerization of the optimal chelate could yield a highly sensitive, molecule-sized T2 contrast agent for improved molecular imaging applications. PMID:24390729

  7. Timing is everything: Fine-tuned molecular machines orchestrate paramyxovirus entry

    PubMed Central

    Bose, Sayantan; Jardetzky, Theodore S.; Lamb, Robert A.

    2015-01-01

    The Paramyxoviridae include some of the great and ubiquitous disease-causing viruses of humans and animals. In most paramyxoviruses, two viral membrane glycoproteins, fusion protein (F) and receptor binding protein (HN, H or G) mediate a concerted process of recognition of host cell surface molecules followed by fusion of viral and cellular membranes, resulting in viral nucleocapsid entry into the cytoplasm. The interactions between the F and HN, H or G viral glycoproteins and host molecules are critical in determining host range, virulence and spread of these viruses. Recently, atomic structures, together with biochemical and biophysical studies, have provided major insights into how these two viral glycoproteins successfully interact with host receptors on cellular membranes and initiate the membrane fusion process to gain entry into cells. These studies highlight the conserved core mechanisms of paramyxovirus entry that provide the fundamental basis for rational anti-viral drug design and vaccine development. PMID:25771804

  8. Timing is everything: Fine-tuned molecular machines orchestrate paramyxovirus entry

    SciTech Connect

    Bose, Sayantan; Jardetzky, Theodore S.; Lamb, Robert A.

    2015-05-15

    The Paramyxoviridae include some of the great and ubiquitous disease-causing viruses of humans and animals. In most paramyxoviruses, two viral membrane glycoproteins, fusion protein (F) and receptor binding protein (HN, H or G) mediate a concerted process of recognition of host cell surface molecules followed by fusion of viral and cellular membranes, resulting in viral nucleocapsid entry into the cytoplasm. The interactions between the F and HN, H or G viral glycoproteins and host molecules are critical in determining host range, virulence and spread of these viruses. Recently, atomic structures, together with biochemical and biophysical studies, have provided major insights into how these two viral glycoproteins successfully interact with host receptors on cellular membranes and initiate the membrane fusion process to gain entry into cells. These studies highlight the conserved core mechanisms of paramyxovirus entry that provide the fundamental basis for rational anti-viral drug design and vaccine development. - Highlights: • New structural and functional insights into paramyxovirus entry mechanisms. • Current data on paramyxovirus glycoproteins suggest a core conserved entry mechanism. • Diverse mechanisms preventing premature fusion activation exist in these viruses. • Precise spacio-temporal interplay between paramyxovirus glycoproteins initiate entry.

  9. Photoassisted photoluminescence fine-tuning of gold nanodots through free radical-mediated ligand-assembly

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tseng, Yu-Ting; Cherng, Rochelle; Harroun, Scott G.; Yuan, Zhiqin; Lin, Tai-Yuan; Wu, Chien-Wei; Chang, Huan-Tsung; Huang, Chih-Ching

    2016-05-01

    In this study, we have developed a simple photoassisted ligand assembly to fine-tune the photoluminescence (PL) of (11-mercaptoundecyl)-N,N,N-trimethylammonium bromide-capped gold nanodots (11-MUTAB-Au NDs). The 11-MUTAB-Au NDs (size: ca. 1.8 nm), obtained from the reaction of gold nanoparticles (ca. 3 nm) and 11-MUTAB, exhibited weak, near-infrared (NIR) PL at 700 nm with a quantum yield (QY) of 0.37% upon excitation at 365 nm. The PL QY of the Au NDs increased to 11.43% after reaction with 11-mercaptoundecanoic acid (11-MUA) for 30 min under ultraviolet (UV) light, which was accompanied by a PL wavelength shift to the green region (~520 nm). UV-light irradiation accelerates 11-MUA assembly on the 11-MUTABAu NDs (11-MUA/11-MUTAB-Au NDs) through a radical-mediated reaction. Furthermore, the PL wavelength of the 11-MUA/11-MUTAB-Au NDs can be switched to 640 nm via cysteamine under UV-light irradiation. We propose that the PL of the Au NDs with NIR and visible emissions was originally from the surface thiol-Au complexes and the Au core, respectively. These dramatically different optical properties of the Au NDs were due to variation in the surface ligands, as well as the densities and surface oxidant states of the surface Au atoms/ions. These effects can be controlled by assembling surface thiol ligands and accelerated by UV irradiation.In this study, we have developed a simple photoassisted ligand assembly to fine-tune the photoluminescence (PL) of (11-mercaptoundecyl)-N,N,N-trimethylammonium bromide-capped gold nanodots (11-MUTAB-Au NDs). The 11-MUTAB-Au NDs (size: ca. 1.8 nm), obtained from the reaction of gold nanoparticles (ca. 3 nm) and 11-MUTAB, exhibited weak, near-infrared (NIR) PL at 700 nm with a quantum yield (QY) of 0.37% upon excitation at 365 nm. The PL QY of the Au NDs increased to 11.43% after reaction with 11-mercaptoundecanoic acid (11-MUA) for 30 min under ultraviolet (UV) light, which was accompanied by a PL wavelength shift to the green region

  10. Selective loss of fine tuning of Gq/11 signaling by RGS2 protein exacerbates cardiomyocyte hypertrophy.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Wei; Anger, Thomas; Su, Jialin; Hao, Jianming; Xu, Xiaomei; Zhu, Ming; Gach, Agnieszka; Cui, Lei; Liao, Ronglih; Mende, Ulrike

    2006-03-03

    Alterations in cardiac G protein-mediated signaling, most prominently G(q/11) signaling, are centrally involved in hypertrophy and heart failure development. Several RGS proteins that can act as negative regulators of G protein signaling are expressed in the heart, but their functional roles are still poorly understood. RGS expression changes have been described in hypertrophic and failing hearts. In this study, we report a marked decrease in RGS2 (but not other major cardiac RGS proteins (RGS3-RGS5)) that occurs prior to hypertrophy development in different models with enhanced G(q/11) signaling (transgenic expression of activated Galpha(q)(*) and pressure overload due to aortic constriction). To assess functional consequences of selective down-regulation of endogenous RGS2, we identified targeting sequences for effective RGS2 RNA interference and used lipid-based transfection to achieve uptake of fluorescently labeled RGS2 small interfering RNA in >90% of neonatal and adult ventricular myocytes. Endogenous RGS2 expression was dose-dependently suppressed (up to 90%) with no major change in RGS3-RGS5. RGS2 knockdown increased phenylephrine- and endothelin-1-induced phospholipase Cbeta stimulation in both cell types and exacerbated the hypertrophic effect (increase in cell size and radiolabeled protein) in neonatal myocytes, with no major change in G(q/11)-mediated ERK1/2, p38, or JNK activation. Taken together, this study demonstrates that endogenous RGS2 exerts functionally important inhibitory restraint on G(q/11)-mediated phospholipase Cbeta activation and hypertrophy in ventricular myocytes. Our findings point toward a potential pathophysiological role of loss of fine tuning due to selective RGS2 down-regulation in G(q/11)-mediated remodeling. Furthermore, this study shows the feasibility of effective RNA interference in cardiomyocytes using lipid-based small interfering RNA transfection.

  11. Fine-tuning of NADH oxidase decreases byproduct accumulation in respiration deficient xylose metabolic Saccharomyces cerevisiae

    PubMed Central

    2014-01-01

    Background Efficiently utilizing all available carbon from lignocellulosic feedstock presents a major barrier to the production of economically feasible biofuel. Previously, to enable xylose utilization, we introduced a cofactor-dependent xylose reductase (XR) and xylitol dehydrogenase (XDH) pathway, or a cofactor-independent xylose isomerase (XI) pathway, into Saccharomyces cerevisiae. The resulting strains metabolized xylose with high efficiency. However, in both pathway recombinant strains, the cofactor imbalance caused accumulation of the byproducts glycerol and/or xylitol and reduced the ethanol production efficiency. Results In this study, we introduced NADH oxidase from Lactococcus lactis into both XI and XR-XDH pathway recombinant strains. To reduce byproduct accumulation while maintaining xylose metabolism, we optimized the expression level of NADH oxidase by comparing its expression under the control of different promoters and plasmids. In recombinant XI strains, NADH oxidase was expressed at different levels, regulated by the GPD2 promoter or TEF1 promoter in the 2 μ plasmid. The expression under the control of GPD2 promoter decreased glycerol production by 84% and increased the ethanol yield and specific growth rate by 8% and 12%, respectively. In contrast, in the recombinant XR-XDH strains, such expression level was not efficient enough to decrease the byproduct accumulation. Therefore, higher NADH oxidase expression levels were tested. In the strain expressing NADH oxidase under the control of the TEF1 promoter in the centromeric plasmids, xylitol and glycerol production were reduced by 60% and 83%, respectively, without significantly affecting xylose consumption. Conclusions By fine-tuning NADH oxidase expression, we decreased the glycerol or/and xylitol production in both recombinant XI and XR-XDH xylose-metabolizing yeast strains. The optimal NADH oxidase expression levels depend on metabolic pathways. Similar cofactor engineering strategies

  12. A role for TRIANGULAR HULL1 in fine-tuning spikelet morphogenesis in rice.

    PubMed

    Sato, Dai-Suke; Ohmori, Yoshihiro; Nagashima, Haruka; Toriba, Taiyo; Hirano, Hiro-Yuki

    2014-01-01

    The lemma and palea, which enclose the pistil, stamens, and lodicules, are the most conspicuous organs in the rice spikelet. We isolated a mutant line (ng6569) in which the lemma and palea were narrower than those of the wild type, and found that the mutant had a defect in TRIANGULAR HULL1 (TH1), which encodes a nuclear protein with an ALOG domain. Detailed morphological analysis indicated that the th1 mutation caused a reduction in the size of tubercles, which are convex structures on the surface of the lemma and palea. This reduction was more pronounced in the apical region of the lemma than in the basal region, resulting in the formation of a beak-like spikelet. By contrast, the number of tubercle rows and their spatial distribution on the lemma were not affected in the th1 mutant. Thus, the TH1 gene seems to be involved in fine-tuning the morphogenesis of the lemma and palea. In situ hybridization analysis revealed that TH1 was highly expressed in the primordia of the lemma and palea, but only weakly expressed in the primordia of the sterile lemma and rudimentary glume. We then examined the effect of th1 mutation on the lemma-like structure formed in the long sterile lemma/glume1 (g1) and extra glume1 (eg1) mutants. The result showed that the th1 mutation strongly affected the morphology of the extra lemma of eg1, but had no significant effect on the transformed lemma of g1.

  13. Conformational Fine-Tuning of Pore-Forming Peptide Potency and Selectivity

    PubMed Central

    2015-01-01

    To better understand the sequence–structure–function relationships that control the activity and selectivity of membrane-permeabilizing peptides, we screened a peptide library, based on the archetypal pore-former melittin, for loss-of-function variants. This was accomplished by assaying library members for failure to cause leakage of entrapped contents from synthetic lipid vesicles at a peptide-to-lipid ratio of 1:20, 10-fold higher than the concentration at which melittin efficiently permeabilizes the same vesicles. Surprisingly, about one-third of the library members are inactive under these conditions. In the negative peptides, two changes of hydrophobic residues to glycine were especially abundant. We show that loss-of-function activity can be completely recapitulated by a single-residue change of the leucine at position 16 to glycine. Unlike the potently cytolytic melittin, the loss-of-function peptides, including the single-site variant, are essentially inactive against phosphatidylcholine vesicles and multiple types of eukaryotic cells. Loss of function is shown to result from a shift in the binding–folding equilibrium away from the active, bound, α-helical state toward the inactive, unbound, random-coil state. Accordingly, the addition of anionic lipids to synthetic lipid vesicles restored binding, α-helical secondary structure, and potent activity of the “negative” peptides. While nontoxic to mammalian cells, the single-site variant has potent bactericidal activity, consistent with the anionic nature of bacterial membranes. The results show that conformational fine-tuning of helical pore-forming peptides is a powerful way to modulate their activity and selectivity. PMID:26632653

  14. Quasi-Yukawa unification and fine-tuning in U(1) extended SSM

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hiçyılmaz, Yaşar; Ceylan, Meltem; Altaş, Aslı; Solmaz, Levent; Ün, Cem Salih

    2016-11-01

    We consider the low scale implications in the U(1 ) ' extended minimal supersymmetric Standard Model (UMSSM). We restrict the parameter space such that the lightest supersymmetric particle (LSP) is always the lightest neutralino. In addition, we impose quasi-Yukawa unification (QYU) at the grand unification scale (MGUT). QYU strictly requires the ratios among the Yukawa couplings as yt/yb˜1.2 , yτ/yb˜1.4 , and yt/yτ˜0.8 . We find that the need for fine-tuning over the fundamental parameter space of QYU is in the acceptable range (ΔEW≤1 03), even if the universal boundary conditions are imposed at MGUT, in contrast to CMSSM and nonuniversal Higgs masses. The UMSSM with universal boundary conditions yields heavy stops (mt ˜≳2.5 TeV ), gluinos (mg ˜≳2 TeV ), and squarks from the first two families (mq ˜≳4 TeV ). Similarly, the stau mass is bounded from below at about 1.5 TeV. Despite this heavy spectrum, we find ΔEW≳300 , which is much lower than that needed for the minimal supersymmetric models. In addition, the UMSSM yields a relatively small μ term, and the LSP neutralino is mostly formed by the Higgsinos of mass ≳700 GeV . We also obtain bino-like dark matter of mass about 400 GeV. The wino is usually found to be heavier than Higgsinos and binos, but there is a small region where μ ˜M1˜M2˜1 TeV . We also identify a chargino-neutralino coannihilation channel and A -resonance solutions which reduce the relic abundance of LSP neutralinos down to the ranges compatible with the current WMAP and Planck measurements.

  15. Finely tuned regulation of the aromatic amine degradation pathway in Escherichia coli.

    PubMed

    Zeng, Ji; Spiro, Stephen

    2013-11-01

    FeaR is an AraC family regulator that activates transcription of the tynA and feaB genes in Escherichia coli. TynA is a periplasmic topaquinone- and copper-containing amine oxidase, and FeaB is a cytosolic NAD-linked aldehyde dehydrogenase. Phenylethylamine, tyramine, and dopamine are oxidized by TynA to the corresponding aldehydes, releasing one equivalent of H2O2 and NH3. The aldehydes can be oxidized to carboxylic acids by FeaB, and (in the case of phenylacetate) can be further degraded to enter central metabolism. Thus, phenylethylamine can be used as a carbon and nitrogen source, while tyramine and dopamine can be used only as sources of nitrogen. Using genetic, biochemical and computational approaches, we show that the FeaR binding site is a TGNCA-N8-AAA motif that occurs in 2 copies in the tynA and feaB promoters. We show that the coactivator for FeaR is the product rather than the substrate of the TynA reaction. The feaR gene is upregulated by carbon or nitrogen limitation, which we propose reflects regulation of feaR by the cyclic AMP receptor protein (CRP) and the nitrogen assimilation control protein (NAC), respectively. In carbon-limited cells grown in the presence of a TynA substrate, tynA and feaB are induced, whereas in nitrogen-limited cells, only the tynA promoter is induced. We propose that tynA and feaB expression is finely tuned to provide the FeaB activity that is required for carbon source utilization and the TynA activity required for nitrogen and carbon source utilization.

  16. Cell-Specific Fine-Tuning of Neuronal Excitability by Differential Expression of Modulator Protein Isoforms

    PubMed Central

    Jepson, James; Sheldon, Amanda; Shahidullah, Mohammad; Fei, Hong; Koh, Kyunghee

    2013-01-01

    SLOB (SLOWPOKE-binding protein) modulates the Drosophila SLOWPOKE calcium-activated potassium channel. We have shown previously that SLOB deletion or RNAi knockdown decreases excitability of neurosecretory pars intercerebralis (PI) neurons in the adult Drosophila brain. In contrast, we found that SLOB deletion/knockdown enhances neurotransmitter release from motor neurons at the fly larval neuromuscular junction, suggesting an increase in excitability. Because two prominent SLOB isoforms, SLOB57 and SLOB71, modulate SLOWPOKE channels in opposite directions in vitro, we investigated whether divergent expression patterns of these two isoforms might underlie the differential modulation of excitability in PI and motor neurons. By performing detailed in vitro and in vivo analysis, we found strikingly different modes of regulatory control by the slob57 and slob71 promoters. The slob71, but not slob57, promoter contains binding sites for the Hunchback and Mirror transcriptional repressors. Furthermore, several core promoter elements that are absent in the slob57 promoter coordinately drive robust expression of a luciferase vector by the slob71 promoter in vitro. In addition, we visualized the expression patterns of the slob57 and slob71 promoters in vivo and found clear spatiotemporal differences in promoter activity. SLOB57 is expressed prominently in adult PI neurons, whereas larval motor neurons exclusively express SLOB71. In contrast, at the larval neuromuscular junction, SLOB57 expression appears to be restricted mainly to a subset of glial cells. Our results illustrate how the use of alternative transcriptional start sites within an ion channel modulator locus coupled with functionally relevant alternative splicing can be used to fine-tune neuronal excitability in a cell-specific manner. PMID:24133277

  17. The S1 helix critically regulates the finely tuned gating of Kv11.1 channels

    PubMed Central

    Phan, Kevin; Ng, Chai Ann; David, Erikka; Shishmarev, Dmitry; Kuchel, Philip W.; Vandenberg, Jamie I.; Perry, Matthew D.

    2017-01-01

    Congenital mutations in the cardiac Kv11.1 channel can cause long QT syndrome type 2 (LQTS2), a heart rhythm disorder associated with sudden cardiac death. Mutations act either by reducing protein expression at the membrane and/or by perturbing the intricate gating properties of Kv11.1 channels. A number of clinical LQTS2-associated mutations have been reported in the first transmembrane segment (S1) of Kv11.1 channels, but the role of this region of the channel is largely unexplored. In part, this is due to problems defining the extent of the S1 helix, as a consequence of its low sequence homology with other Kv family members. Here, we used NMR spectroscopy and electrophysiological characterization to show that the S1 of Kv11.1 channels extends seven helical turns, from Pro-405 to Phe-431, and is flanked by unstructured loops. Functional analysis suggests that pre-S1 loop residues His-402 and Tyr-403 play an important role in regulating the kinetics and voltage dependence of channel activation and deactivation. Multiple residues within the S1 helix also play an important role in fine-tuning the voltage dependence of activation, regulating slow deactivation, and modulating C-type inactivation of Kv11.1 channels. Analyses of LQTS2-associated mutations in the pre-S1 loop or S1 helix of Kv11.1 channels demonstrate perturbations to both protein expression and most gating transitions. Thus, S1 region mutations would reduce both the action potential repolarizing current passed by Kv11.1 channels in cardiac myocytes, as well as the current passed in response to premature depolarizations that normally helps protect against the formation of ectopic beats. PMID:28280240

  18. Lysine succinylation of Mycobacterium tuberculosis isocitrate lyase (ICL) fine-tunes the microbial resistance to antibiotics.

    PubMed

    Zhou, Mingliang; Xie, Longxiang; Yang, Zhaozhen; Zhou, Jiahai; Xie, Jianping

    2017-04-01

    Lysine succinylation (Ksucc) is a newly identified protein posttranslational modification (PTM), which may play an important role in cellular physiology. However, the role of lysine succinylation in antibiotic resistance remains elusive. Isocitrate lyase (ICL) is crucial for broad-spectrum antibiotics tolerance in Mycobacterium tuberculosis (Mtb). We previously found that MtbICL (Rv0467) has at least three succinylated lysine residues, namely K189, K322, and K334.To explore the effect of succinylation on the activity of MtbICL, mutants' mimicry of the lysine succinylation were generated by site-directed mutagenesis. ICL-K189E mutant strain is more sensitive than the wild-type to rifampicin and streptomycin, but not isoniazid. For the in vitro activity of the purified isocitrate lyase, only K189E mutant showed significantly decreased activity. Crystal structure analysis showed that Lys189 Glu dramatically increased the pKa of Glu188 and decreased the pKa of Lys190, whereas had negligible effect on other residues within 5 Å as well as disruption of the electrostatic interaction between Lys189 and Glu182, which might prevent the closure of the active site loop and cause severe reduction of the enzyme activity. Considering the genetic, biochemical, and crystallographical evidences together, the succinylation of specific ICL residue can fine-tune the bacterial resistance to selected antibiotics. The decreased enzymatic activity resulting from the succinylation-changed electrostatic interaction might underlie this phenotype. This study provided the first insight into the link between lysine succinylation and antibiotic resistance.

  19. The Formation of Uranus and Neptune: Fine-tuning in Core Accretion

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Frelikh, Renata; Murray-Clay, Ruth A.

    2017-09-01

    Uranus and Neptune are ice giants with ∼15% atmospheres by mass, which places them in a category intermediate between rocky planets and gas giants. These atmospheres are too massive to have been primarily outgassed, but they never underwent runaway gas accretion. The ice giants never reached critical core mass ({M}{crit}) in a full gas disk, but their cores are ≳ {M}{crit}, suggesting that their envelopes were mainly accreted at the end of the disk lifetime. Pebble accretion calls into question traditional slow atmospheric growth during this phase. We show that the full-sized ice giants predominantly accreted gas from a disk depleted by at least a factor of ∼100. Such a disk dissipates in ≲105 years. Why would both cores stay subcritical for the entire ∼Myr disk lifetime, only to reach {M}{crit} in the final 105 years? This is fine tuned. Ice giants in the outer disk have atmospheric mass fractions comparable to the disk gas-to-solid ratio during the bulk of their gas accretion. This point in disk evolution coincides with a dynamical upheaval: the gas loses its ability to efficiently damp the core random velocities, allowing them to be gravitationally excited by Jupiter and Saturn. We suggest that the ice giants’ cores began growing on closer-in orbits (staying subcritical), and migrated out during this dynamical instability. There, their orbits circularized after accreting much of their mass in solids. Finally, they accreted their envelopes from a depleted nebula, where the sparseness of feeding-zone gas prevented runaway.

  20. Fine-tuned evaluation of olfactory function in patients operated for nasal polyposis.

    PubMed

    Sonnet, Marie-Hortense; Nguyen, Duc Trung; Nguyen-Thi, Phi-Linh; Arous, Fabien; Jankowski, Roger; Rumeau, Cécile

    2017-07-01

    Given the forced-choice procedure of the identification test, patients with profound anosmia are more likely to have higher identification scores by chance than patients with hyposmia or normosmia. This may be a confusing factor when assessing the sense of smell, which alters the appreciation of real olfaction improvement. The aim of this study was to fine-tune the results of the identification Sniffin' Sticks test before and 6 weeks after surgery using the real identification score. A total of 133 patients underwent the Identification (I) and Threshold (T) tests the day before and 6 weeks after nasalization surgery. The scores of the identification test, called I G (global identification), were ranked from 0 to 16. Patients had to specify if their forced-choice answers were given either surely or randomly, called I H (hazard identification). The real score of identification I R was obtained as follow: I R = I G - I H. Patients with an immeasurable threshold according to the T test were more prone to give randomly correct answers. On the basis of I G scores, 43.6% of patients remained hypo-anosmic after surgery compared to 72.9% before surgery. Using I R scores, only 3.8% of patients remained anosmic (I R = 0) at 6 weeks after surgery. Hence, patients with real anosmia (I R = 0) were less prone to improve their olfaction than patients with I R > 0. The analysis of random factor when using identification test allows differentiating a real anosmia from a hyposmia. An I G ≤ 4 could be considered as a profound/real anosmia or a severe hyposmia. This procedure cannot, however, replace the forced-choice method in odor identification testing.

  1. New approach to assess sperm DNA fragmentation dynamics: Fine-tuning mathematical models.

    PubMed

    Ortiz, Isabel; Dorado, Jesús; Morrell, Jane; Gosálvez, Jaime; Crespo, Francisco; Jiménez, Juan M; Hidalgo, Manuel

    2017-01-01

    Sperm DNA fragmentation (sDF) has been proved to be an important parameter in order to predict in vitro the potential fertility of a semen sample. Colloid centrifugation could be a suitable technique to select those donkey sperm more resistant to DNA fragmentation after thawing. Previous studies have shown that to elucidate the latent damage of the DNA molecule, sDF should be assessed dynamically, where the rate of fragmentation between treatments indicates how resistant the DNA is to iatrogenic damage. The rate of fragmentation is calculated using the slope of a linear regression equation. However, it has not been studied if sDF dynamics fit this model. The objectives of this study were to evaluate the effect of different after-thawing centrifugation protocols on sperm DNA fragmentation and elucidate the most accurate mathematical model (linear regression, exponential or polynomial) for DNA fragmentation over time in frozen-thawed donkey semen. After submitting post-thaw semen samples to no centrifugation (UDC), sperm washing (SW) or single layer centrifugation (SLC) protocols, sDF values after 6 h of incubation were significantly lower in SLC samples than in SW or UDC. Coefficient of determination (R(2)) values were significantly higher for a second order polynomial model than for linear or exponential. The highest values for acceleration of fragmentation (aSDF) were obtained for SW, followed by SLC and UDC. SLC after thawing seems to preserve longer DNA longevity in comparison to UDC and SW. Moreover, the fine-tuning of models has shown that sDF dynamics in frozen-thawed donkey semen fit a second order polynomial model, which implies that fragmentation rate is not constant and fragmentation acceleration must be taken into account to elucidate hidden damage in the DNA molecule.

  2. Causes and consequences of repeatability, flexibility and individual fine-tuning of migratory timing in pike.

    PubMed

    Tibblin, Petter; Forsman, Anders; Borger, Tobias; Larsson, Per

    2016-01-01

    Many organisms undertake migrations between foraging and breeding habitats and while it is assumed that reproductive timing affects fitness, little is known about the degree of individual consistency, and about the causes and consequences of individual variation in migratory timing in organisms other than birds. Here, we report on a 6-year mark-recapture study, including 2048 individuals, of breeding migration in anadromous pike (Esox lucius), an iteroparous top-predatory fish that displays homing behaviour. By repeated sampling across years at a breeding site, we first quantify individual variation both within and between breeding events and then investigate phenotypic correlates and fitness consequences of arrival timing to the breeding site. Our data demonstrate that males arrive before females, that large males arrive later than small males, that the timing of breeding migration varies among years and that individuals are consistent in their timing across years relative to other individuals in the population. Furthermore, data on return rates indicate that arrival time is under stabilizing viability selection, and that individuals who are more flexible in their timing of arrival during the first reproductive years survive longer compared with less flexible individuals. Finally, longitudinal data demonstrate that individuals consistently fine-tune their arrival timing across years, showing that the timing of arrival to breeding sites is influenced by experience. These findings represent rare evidence of how between- and within-individual variations in migratory timing across breeding events are correlated with phenotypic and fitness traits in an ecologically important keystone species. Our results emphasize the importance of considering variation in migratory timing both between and within individuals in studies investigating the fitness consequences of migratory behaviour and have implications for future management. © 2015 The Authors. Journal of Animal

  3. Leaf color is fine-tuned on the solar spectra to avoid strand direct solar radiation.

    PubMed

    Kume, Atsushi; Akitsu, Tomoko; Nasahara, Kenlo Nishida

    2016-07-01

    The spectral distributions of light absorption rates by intact leaves are notably different from the incident solar radiation spectra, for reasons that remain elusive. Incident global radiation comprises two main components; direct radiation from the direction of the sun, and diffuse radiation, which is sunlight scattered by molecules, aerosols and clouds. Both irradiance and photon flux density spectra differ between direct and diffuse radiation in their magnitude and profile. However, most research has assumed that the spectra of photosynthetically active radiation (PAR) can be averaged, without considering the radiation classes. We used paired spectroradiometers to sample direct and diffuse solar radiation, and obtained relationships between the PAR spectra and the absorption spectra of photosynthetic pigments and organs. As monomers in solvent, the spectral absorbance of Chl a decreased with the increased spectral irradiance (W m(-2) nm(-1)) of global PAR at noon (R(2) = 0.76), and was suitable to avoid strong spectral irradiance (λmax = 480 nm) rather than absorb photon flux density (μmol m(-2) s(-1) nm(-1)) efficiently. The spectral absorption of photosystems and the intact thallus and leaves decreased linearly with the increased spectral irradiance of direct PAR at noon (I dir-max), where the wavelength was within the 450-650 nm range (R(2) = 0.81). The higher-order structure of photosystems systematically avoided the strong spectral irradiance of I dir-max. However, when whole leaves were considered, leaf anatomical structure and light scattering in leaf tissues made the leaves grey bodies for PAR and enabled high PAR use efficiency. Terrestrial green plants are fine-tuned to spectral dynamics of incident solar radiation and PAR absorption is increased in various structural hierarchies.

  4. Body appendages fine-tune posture and moments in freely manoeuvring fruit flies.

    PubMed

    Berthé, Ruben; Lehmann, Fritz-Olaf

    2015-10-01

    The precise control of body posture by turning moments is key to elevated locomotor performance in flying animals. Although elevated moments for body stabilization are typically produced by wing aerodynamics, animals also steer using drag on body appendages, shifting their centre of body mass, and changing moments of inertia caused by active alterations in body shape. To estimate the instantaneous contribution of each of these components for posture control in an insect, we three-dimensionally reconstructed body posture and movements of body appendages in freely manoeuvring fruit flies (Drosophila melanogaster) by high-speed video and experimentally scored drag coefficients of legs and body trunk at low Reynolds number. The results show that the sum of leg- and abdomen-induced yaw moments dominates wing-induced moments during 17% of total flight time but is, on average, 7.2-times (roll, 3.4-times) smaller during manoeuvring. Our data reject a previous hypothesis on synergistic moment support, indicating that drag on body appendages and mass-shift inhibit rather than support turning moments produced by the wings. Numerical modelling further shows that hind leg extension alters the moments of inertia around the three main body axes of the animal by not more than 6% during manoeuvring, which is significantly less than previously reported for other insects. In sum, yaw, pitch and roll steering by body appendages probably fine-tune turning behaviour and body posture, without providing a significant advantage for posture stability and moment support. Motion control of appendages might thus be part of the insect's trimming reflexes, which reduce imbalances in moment generation caused by unilateral wing damage and abnormal asymmetries of the flight apparatus. © 2015. Published by The Company of Biologists Ltd.

  5. Molecular vibrational energy flow

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gruebele, M.; Bigwood, R.

    This article reviews some recent work in molecular vibrational energy flow (IVR), with emphasis on our own computational and experimental studies. We consider the problem in various representations, and use these to develop a family of simple models which combine specific molecular properties (e.g. size, vibrational frequencies) with statistical properties of the potential energy surface and wavefunctions. This marriage of molecular detail and statistical simplification captures trends of IVR mechanisms and survival probabilities beyond the abilities of purely statistical models or the computational limitations of full ab initio approaches. Of particular interest is IVR in the intermediate time regime, where heavy-atom skeletal modes take over the IVR process from hydrogenic motions even upon X H bond excitation. Experiments and calculations on prototype heavy-atom systems show that intermediate time IVR differs in many aspects from the early stages of hydrogenic mode IVR. As a result, IVR can be coherently frozen, with potential applications to selective chemistry.

  6. Local temperature fine-tunes the timing of spring migration in birds.

    PubMed

    Tøttrup, Anders P; Rainio, Kalle; Coppack, Timothy; Lehikoinen, Esa; Rahbek, Carsten; Thorup, Kasper

    2010-09-01

    Evidence for climate-driven phenological changes is rapidly increasing at all trophic levels. Our current poor knowledge of the detailed control of bird migration from the level of genes and hormonal control to direct physiological and behavioral responses hampers our ability to understand and predict consequences of climatic change for migratory birds. In order to better understand migration phenology and adaptation in environmental changes, we here assess the scale at which weather affects timing of spring migration in passerine birds. We use three commonly used proxies of spring-time climatic conditions: (1) vegetation "greenness" (NDVI) in Europe, (2) local spring temperatures in northern Europe, and (3) the North Atlantic Oscillation Index (NAO) as predictors of the phenology of avian migration as well as the strength of their effect on different subsets of populations and the dependence of correlations on species-specific migratory strategy. We analyze phenological patterns of the entire spring migration period in 12 Palaearctic passerine species, drawing on long-term data collected at three locations along a longitudinal gradient situated close to their northern European breeding area. Local temperature was the best single predictor of phenology with the highest explanatory power achieved in combination with NAO. Furthermore, early individuals are more affected by climatic variation compared to individuals on later passage, indicating that climatic change affects subsets of migratory populations differentially. Species wintering closer to the breeding areas were affected more than were those travelling longer distances and this pattern was strongest for the earliest subsets of the population. Overall, our results suggest that at least early subsets of the population are affected by local conditions and early birds use local conditions to fine-tune the date of their spring arrival while individuals arriving later are driven by other factors than local

  7. Fine-tuning of whispering gallery modes in on-chip silica microdisk resonators within a full spectral range

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Henze, Rico; Pyrlik, Christoph; Thies, Andreas; Ward, Jonathan M.; Wicht, Andreas; Benson, Oliver

    2013-01-01

    We investigate an efficient method for fine-tuning whispering gallery mode resonances in disk-type silica microresonators to reach an arbitrary frequency within the free spectral range of the system. This method is based on a post-production hydrofluoric acid etching process to precisely resize the radius of such microresonators. We show the effectiveness of this approach by tuning their resonance frequency within 10 GHz of specific hydrogen cyanide reference lines (P16, P18). This technique allows for simple and exact matching of narrow-linewidth lasers or spectroscopic lines with the high-Q resonances of on-chip silica microresonators.

  8. The CCR4 deadenylase acts with Nanos and Pumilio in the fine-tuning of Mei-P26 expression to promote germline stem cell self-renewal.

    PubMed

    Joly, Willy; Chartier, Aymeric; Rojas-Rios, Patricia; Busseau, Isabelle; Simonelig, Martine

    2013-01-01

    Translational regulation plays an essential role in Drosophila ovarian germline stem cell (GSC) biology. GSC self-renewal requires two translational repressors, Nanos (Nos) and Pumilio (Pum), which repress the expression of differentiation factors in the stem cells. The molecular mechanisms underlying this translational repression remain unknown. Here, we show that the CCR4 deadenylase is required for GSC self-renewal and that Nos and Pum act through its recruitment onto specific mRNAs. We identify mei-P26 mRNA as a direct and major target of Nos/Pum/CCR4 translational repression in the GSCs. mei-P26 encodes a protein of the Trim-NHL tumor suppressor family that has conserved functions in stem cell lineages. We show that fine-tuning Mei-P26 expression by CCR4 plays a key role in GSC self-renewal. These results identify the molecular mechanism of Nos/Pum function in GSC self-renewal and reveal the role of CCR4-NOT-mediated deadenylation in regulating the balance between GSC self-renewal and differentiation.

  9. Using membrane composition to fine-tune the pKa of an optical liposome pH sensor.

    PubMed

    Clear, Kasey J; Virga, Katelyn; Gray, Lawrence; Smith, Bradley D

    2016-04-14

    Liposomes containing membrane-anchored pH-sensitive optical probes are valuable sensors for monitoring pH in various biomedical samples. The dynamic range of the sensor is maximized when the probe pKa is close to the expected sample pH. While some biomedical samples are close to neutral pH there are several circumstances where the pH is 1 or 2 units lower. Thus, there is a need to fine-tune the probe pKa in a predictable way. This investigation examined two lipid-conjugated optical probes, each with appended deep-red cyanine dyes containing indoline nitrogen atoms that are protonated in acid. The presence of anionic phospholipids in the liposomes stabilized the protonated probes and increased the probe pKa values by < 1 unit. The results show that rational modification of the membrane composition is a general non-covalent way to fine-tune the pKa of an optical liposome sensor for optimal pH sensing performance.

  10. The WD40 Domain Protein MSI1 Functions in a Histone Deacetylase Complex to Fine-Tune Abscisic Acid Signaling.

    PubMed

    Mehdi, Saher; Derkacheva, Maria; Ramström, Margareta; Kralemann, Lejon; Bergquist, Jonas; Hennig, Lars

    2016-01-01

    MSI1 belongs to a family of histone binding WD40-repeat proteins. Arabidopsis thaliana contains five genes encoding MSI1-like proteins, but their functions in diverse chromatin-associated complexes are poorly understood. Here, we show that MSI1 is part of a histone deacetylase complex. We copurified HISTONE DEACETYLASE19 (HDA19) with MSI1 and transcriptional regulatory SIN3-like proteins and provide evidence that MSI1 and HDA19 associate into the same complex in vivo. These data suggest that MSI1, HDA19, and HISTONE DEACETYLATION COMPLEX1 protein form a core complex that can integrate various SIN3-like proteins. We found that reduction of MSI1 or HDA19 causes upregulation of abscisic acid (ABA) receptor genes and hypersensitivity of ABA-responsive genes. The MSI1-HDA19 complex fine-tunes ABA signaling by binding to the chromatin of ABA receptor genes and by maintaining low levels of acetylation of histone H3 at lysine 9, thereby affecting the expression levels of ABA receptor genes. Reduced MSI1 or HDA19 levels led to increased tolerance to salt stress corresponding to the increased ABA sensitivity of gene expression. Together, our results reveal the presence of an MSI1-HDA19 complex that fine-tunes ABA signaling in Arabidopsis.

  11. The lesson of causal discovery algorithms for quantum correlations: causal explanations of Bell-inequality violations require fine-tuning

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wood, Christopher J.; Spekkens, Robert W.

    2015-03-01

    An active area of research in the fields of machine learning and statistics is the development of causal discovery algorithms, the purpose of which is to infer the causal relations that hold among a set of variables from the correlations that these exhibit . We apply some of these algorithms to the correlations that arise for entangled quantum systems. We show that they cannot distinguish correlations that satisfy Bell inequalities from correlations that violate Bell inequalities, and consequently that they cannot do justice to the challenges of explaining certain quantum correlations causally. Nonetheless, by adapting the conceptual tools of causal inference, we can show that any attempt to provide a causal explanation of nonsignalling correlations that violate a Bell inequality must contradict a core principle of these algorithms, namely, that an observed statistical independence between variables should not be explained by fine-tuning of the causal parameters. In particular, we demonstrate the need for such fine-tuning for most of the causal mechanisms that have been proposed to underlie Bell correlations, including superluminal causal influences, superdeterminism (that is, a denial of freedom of choice of settings), and retrocausal influences which do not introduce causal cycles.

  12. Expression analysis of aquaporins from desert truffle mycorrhizal symbiosis reveals a fine-tuned regulation under drought.

    PubMed

    Navarro-Ródenas, Alfonso; Bárzana, Gloria; Nicolás, Emilio; Carra, Andrea; Schubert, Andrea; Morte, Asunción

    2013-09-01

    We have performed the isolation, functional characterization, and expression analysis of aquaporins in roots and leaves of Helianthemum almeriense, in order to evaluate their roles in tolerance to water deficit. Five cDNAs, named HaPIP1;1, HaPIP1;2, HaPIP2;1, HaPIP2;2, and HaTIP1;1, were isolated from H. almeriense. A phylogenetic analysis of deduced proteins confirmed that they belong to the water channel proteins family. The HaPIP1;1, HaPIP2;1, and HaTIP1;1 genes encode functional water channel proteins, as indicated by expression assays in Saccharomyces cerevisiae, showing divergent roles in the transport of water, CO2, and NH3. The expression patterns of the genes isolated from H. almeriense and of a previously described gene from Terfezia claveryi (TcAQP1) were analyzed in mycorrhizal and nonmycorrhizal plants cultivated under well-watered or drought-stress conditions. Some of the studied aquaporins were subjected to fine-tuned expression only under drought-stress conditions. A beneficial effect on plant physiological parameters was observed in mycorrhizal plants with respect to nonmycorrhizal ones. Moreover, stress induced a change in the mycorrhizal type formed, which was more intracellular under drought stress. The combination of a high intracellular colonization, together with the fine-tuned expression of aquaporins could result in a morphophysiological adaptation of this symbiosis to drought conditions.

  13. Fine-tuning of xylose metabolism in genetically engineered Saccharomyces cerevisiae by scattered integration of xylose assimilation genes.

    PubMed

    Zuo, Qi; Zhao, Xin-Qing; Xiong, Liang; Liu, Hai-Jun; Xu, You-Hai; Hu, Shi-Yang; Ma, Zhong-Yi; Zhu, Qing-Wei; Bai, Feng-Wu

    2013-10-18

    Manipulation of multiple genes is a common experience in metabolic engineering and synthetic biology studies. Chromosome integration of multiple genes in one single position is always performed, however, there is so far no study on the integration of multiple genes separately in various positions (here in after referred to as "scattered integration") and its effect on fine-tuning of cellular metabolism. In this study, scattered integration of the xylose assimilation genes PsXR, PsXDH and ScXK was investigated in Saccharomyces cerevisiae, and transcription analysis of these genes as well as their enzyme activities were compared with those observed when the genes were integrated into one single site (defined as "tandem integration" here). Not only notable differences in transcription levels and enzyme activities were observed when the genes were integrated by the two strategies, but also change of the cofactor preference of PsXR gene was validated. Xylose fermentation was further studied with the strains developed with these strategies, and elevated xylose utilization rate was obtained in the scattered integration strain. These results proved that by positioning multiple genes on different chromosomes, fine-tuning of cellular metabolism could be achieved in recombinant S. cerevisiae.

  14. Fine tuning a well-oiled machine: Influence of NK1.1 and NKG2D on NKT cell development and function

    PubMed Central

    Joshi, Sunil K.; Lang, Mark L.

    2013-01-01

    Natural Killer T cells (NKT) represent a group of CD1d-restricted T-lineage cells that that provide a functional interface between innate and adaptive immune responses in infectious disease, cancer, allergy and autoimmunity. There have been remarkable advances in understanding the molecular events that underpin NKT development in the thymus and in the complex array of functions in the periphery. Most functional studies have focused on activation of T cell antigen receptors expressed by NKT cells and their responses to CD1d presentation of glycolipid and related antigens. Receiving less attention has been several molecules that are hallmarks of Natural Killer (NK) cells, but nonetheless expressed by NKT cells. These include several activating and inhibitory receptors that may fine-tune NKT development and survival, as well as activation via antigen receptors. Herein, we review the possible roles of the NK1.1 and NKG2D receptors in regulating development and function of NKT cells in health and disease. We suggest that pharmacological alteration of NKT activity should consider the potential complexities commensurate with NK1.1 and NKG2D expression. PMID:23800654

  15. Direct flow cytometry measurements reveal a fine-tuning of symbiotic cell dynamics according to the host developmental needs in aphid symbiosis

    PubMed Central

    Simonet, Pierre; Duport, Gabrielle; Gaget, Karen; Weiss-Gayet, Michèle; Colella, Stefano; Febvay, Gérard; Charles, Hubert; Viñuelas, José; Heddi, Abdelaziz; Calevro, Federica

    2016-01-01

    Endosymbiotic associations constitute a driving force in the ecological and evolutionary diversification of metazoan organisms. Little is known about whether and how symbiotic cells are coordinated according to host physiology. Here, we use the nutritional symbiosis between the insect pest, Acyrthosiphon pisum, and its obligate symbiont, Buchnera aphidicola, as a model system. We have developed a novel approach for unculturable bacteria, based on flow cytometry, and used this method to estimate the absolute numbers of symbionts at key stages of aphid life. The endosymbiont population increases exponentially throughout nymphal development, showing a growing rate which has never been characterized by indirect molecular techniques. Using histology and imaging techniques, we have shown that the endosymbiont-bearing cells (bacteriocytes) increase significantly in number and size during the nymphal development, and clustering in the insect abdomen. Once adulthood is reached and the laying period has begun, the dynamics of symbiont and host cells is reversed: the number of endosymbionts decreases progressively and the bacteriocyte structure degenerates during insect aging. In summary, these results show a coordination of the cellular dynamics between bacteriocytes and primary symbionts and reveal a fine-tuning of aphid symbiotic cells to the nutritional demand imposed by the host physiology throughout development. PMID:26822159

  16. MicroRNA-29 Fine-tunes the Expression of Key FOXA2-Activated Lipid Metabolism Genes and Is Dysregulated in Animal Models of Insulin Resistance and Diabetes

    PubMed Central

    Kurtz, C. Lisa; Peck, Bailey C.E.; Fannin, Emily E.; Beysen, Carine; Miao, Ji; Landstreet, Stuart R.; Ding, Shengli; Turaga, Vandana; Lund, P. Kay; Turner, Scott; Biddinger, Sudha B.; Vickers, Kasey C.

    2014-01-01

    MicroRNAs (miRNAs) have emerged as biomarkers of metabolic status, etiological factors in complex disease, and promising drug targets. Recent reports suggest that miRNAs are critical regulators of pathways underlying the pathophysiology of type 2 diabetes. In this study, we demonstrate by deep sequencing and real-time quantitative PCR that hepatic levels of Foxa2 mRNA and miR-29 are elevated in a mouse model of diet-induced insulin resistance. We also show that Foxa2 and miR-29 are significantly upregulated in the livers of Zucker diabetic fatty (fa/fa) rats and that the levels of both returned to normal upon treatment with the insulin-sensitizing agent pioglitazone. We present evidence that miR-29 expression in human hepatoma cells is controlled in part by FOXA2, which is known to play a critical role in hepatic energy homeostasis. Moreover, we demonstrate that miR-29 fine-tunes FOXA2-mediated activation of key lipid metabolism genes, including PPARGC1A, HMGCS2, and ABHD5. These results suggest that miR-29 is an important regulatory factor in normal metabolism and may represent a novel therapeutic target in type 2 diabetes and related metabolic syndromes. PMID:24722248

  17. MicroRNA-29 fine-tunes the expression of key FOXA2-activated lipid metabolism genes and is dysregulated in animal models of insulin resistance and diabetes.

    PubMed

    Kurtz, C Lisa; Peck, Bailey C E; Fannin, Emily E; Beysen, Carine; Miao, Ji; Landstreet, Stuart R; Ding, Shengli; Turaga, Vandana; Lund, P Kay; Turner, Scott; Biddinger, Sudha B; Vickers, Kasey C; Sethupathy, Praveen

    2014-09-01

    MicroRNAs (miRNAs) have emerged as biomarkers of metabolic status, etiological factors in complex disease, and promising drug targets. Recent reports suggest that miRNAs are critical regulators of pathways underlying the pathophysiology of type 2 diabetes. In this study, we demonstrate by deep sequencing and real-time quantitative PCR that hepatic levels of Foxa2 mRNA and miR-29 are elevated in a mouse model of diet-induced insulin resistance. We also show that Foxa2 and miR-29 are significantly upregulated in the livers of Zucker diabetic fatty (fa/fa) rats and that the levels of both returned to normal upon treatment with the insulin-sensitizing agent pioglitazone. We present evidence that miR-29 expression in human hepatoma cells is controlled in part by FOXA2, which is known to play a critical role in hepatic energy homeostasis. Moreover, we demonstrate that miR-29 fine-tunes FOXA2-mediated activation of key lipid metabolism genes, including PPARGC1A, HMGCS2, and ABHD5. These results suggest that miR-29 is an important regulatory factor in normal metabolism and may represent a novel therapeutic target in type 2 diabetes and related metabolic syndromes.

  18. Post-LHC7 fine-tuning in the minimal supergravity/CMSSM model with a 125 GeV Higgs boson

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Baer, Howard; Barger, Vernon; Huang, Peisi; Mickelson, Dan; Mustafayev, Azar; Tata, Xerxes

    2013-02-01

    The recent discovery of a 125 GeV Higgs-like resonance at LHC, coupled with the lack of evidence for weak scale supersymmetry (SUSY), has severely constrained SUSY models such as minimal supergravity (mSUGRA)/CMSSM. As LHC probes deeper into SUSY model parameter space, the little hierarchy problem—how to reconcile the Z and Higgs boson mass scale with the scale of SUSY breaking—will become increasingly exacerbated unless a sparticle signal is found. We evaluate two different measures of fine-tuning in the mSUGRA/CMSSM model. The more stringent of these, ΔHS, includes effects that arise from the high-scale origin of the mSUGRA parameters while the second measure, ΔEW, is determined only by weak scale parameters: hence, it is universal to any model with the same particle spectrum and couplings. Our results incorporate the latest constraints from LHC7 sparticle searches, LHCb limits from Bs→μ+μ- and also require a light Higgs scalar with mh˜123-127GeV. We present fine-tuning contours in the m0 vs m1/2 plane for several sets of A0 and tan⁡β values. We also present results for ΔHS and ΔEW from a scan over the entire viable model parameter space. We find a ΔHS≳103, or at best 0.1%, fine-tuning. For the less stringent electroweak fine-tuning, we find ΔEW≳102, or at best 1%, fine-tuning. Two benchmark points are presented that have the lowest values of ΔHS and ΔEW. Our results provide a quantitative measure for ascertaining whether or not the remaining mSUGRA/CMSSM model parameter space is excessively fine-tuned and so could provide impetus for considering alternative SUSY models.

  19. Fine-tuning of magnetic and microfluidic viscous forces for specific magnetic bead-based immunocomplex formation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cornaglia, M.; Tekin, H. C.; Lehnert, T.; Gijs, M. A. M.

    2013-08-01

    We investigate the working principle of a novel type of microfluidic sandwich immunoassay, as used for the detection of biomarkers. The heterogeneous assay is based on the specific interactions between an array of functionalized superparamagnetic beads and a flow of secondary superparamagnetic beads that carry the antigens and are simultaneously used as detection labels. We identify the main forces governing the immunoassay performance and develop a combined finite element method/analytical model to predict and control these forces. The clue for the improved assay specificity is in the fine-tuning of inter-bead magnetic dipolar and microfluidic viscous forces, which allows strongly reducing non-specific interactions, while enhancing the specific formation of immunocomplexes. We exploit our theoretical model to explain the enhanced sensitivity of magnetic bead-based immunoassay experiments performed in microfluidic chips.

  20. Functional Role of PPARs in Ruminants: Potential Targets for Fine-Tuning Metabolism during Growth and Lactation

    PubMed Central

    Chen, Shuowen; Khan, Muhammad J.; Loor, Juan J.

    2013-01-01

    Characterization and biological roles of the peroxisome proliferator-activated receptor (PPAR) isotypes are well known in monogastrics, but not in ruminants. However, a wealth of information has accumulated in little more than a decade on ruminant PPARs including isotype tissue distribution, response to synthetic and natural agonists, gene targets, and factors affecting their expression. Functional characterization demonstrated that, as in monogastrics, the PPAR isotypes control expression of genes involved in lipid metabolism, anti-inflammatory response, development, and growth. Contrary to mouse, however, the PPARγ gene network appears to controls milk fat synthesis in lactating ruminants. As in monogastrics, PPAR isotypes in ruminants are activated by long-chain fatty acids, therefore, making them ideal candidates for fine-tuning metabolism in this species via nutrients. In this regard, using information accumulated in ruminants and monogastrics, we propose a model of PPAR isotype-driven biological functions encompassing key tissues during the peripartal period in dairy cattle. PMID:23737762

  1. Single Heteroatom Fine-Tuning of the Emissive Properties in Organoboron Complexes with 7-(Azaheteroaryl)indole Systems.

    PubMed

    Más-Montoya, Miriam; Usea, Laura; Espinosa Ferao, Arturo; Montenegro, María F; Ramírez de Arellano, Carmen; Tárraga, Alberto; Rodríguez-López, José N; Curiel, David

    2016-04-15

    The application of organoboron compounds as light-absorbing or light-emitting species in areas as relevant as organic electronics or biomedicine has motivated the search for new materials which contribute to the progress of those applications. This article reports the synthesis of four-coordinate boron complexes based on the unexplored 7-(azaheteroaryl)indole ligands. An easy synthetic approach has enabled the fine-tuning of the electronic structure of the organoboron species by modifying a heteroaromatic component in the conjugated system. Furthermore, a comprehensive characterization by X-ray diffraction, absorption and emission spectroscopy, both in solution and in the solid state, cyclic voltammetry, and computational methods has evidenced the utility of this simple strategy. Large Stokes shifts have been achieved in solid thin-films which show a range of emitted light from blue to orange. The synthesized compounds have been used as biocompatible fluorophores in cell bioimaging.

  2. Fine-tuning the electrostatic properties of an alkali-linked organic adlayer on a metal substrate.

    PubMed

    Floris, Andrea; Comisso, Alessio; De Vita, Alessandro

    2013-09-24

    The performance of modern organic electronic devices is often determined by the electronic level alignment at a metal-organic interface. This property can be controlled by introducing an interfacial electrostatic dipole via the insertion of a stable interlayer between the metallic and the organic phases. Here, we use density functional theory to investigate the electrostatic properties of an assembled structure formed by alkali metals coadsorbed with 7,7,8,8-tetracyanoquinodimethane (TCNQ) molecules on a Ag(100) substrate. We find that the interfacial dipole buildup is regulated by the interplay of adsorption energetics, steric constraints and charge transfer effects, so that choosing chemical substitutions within TCNQ and different alkali metals provides a rich playground to control the systems' electrostatics and in particular fine-tune its work-function shift.

  3. Fine-tuning of a radical-based reaction by radical S-adenosyl-L-methionine tryptophan lyase.

    PubMed

    Sicoli, Giuseppe; Mouesca, Jean-Marie; Zeppieri, Laura; Amara, Patricia; Martin, Lydie; Barra, Anne-Laure; Fontecilla-Camps, Juan C; Gambarelli, Serge; Nicolet, Yvain

    2016-03-18

    The radical S-adenosyl-L-methionine tryptophan lyase NosL converts L-tryptophan into 3-methylindolic acid, which is a precursor in the synthesis of the thiopeptide antibiotic nosiheptide. Using electron paramagnetic resonance spectroscopy and multiple L-tryptophan isotopologues, we trapped and characterized radical intermediates that indicate a carboxyl fragment migration mechanism for NosL. This is in contrast to a proposed fragmentation-recombination mechanism that implied Cα-Cβ bond cleavage of L-tryptophan. Although NosL resembles related tyrosine lyases, subtle substrate motions in its active site are responsible for a fine-tuned radical chemistry, which selects the Cα-C bond for disruption. This mechanism highlights evolutionary adaptation to structural constraints in proteins as a route to alternative enzyme function. Copyright © 2016, American Association for the Advancement of Science.

  4. Knowledge based functions for routine use at a German university hospital setting: the issue of fine tuning.

    PubMed Central

    Bürkle, T.; Prokosch, H. U.; Hussak, G.; Dudeck, J.

    1997-01-01

    In this paper we present the introduction of knowledge based functions into clinical routine at Giessen University Hospital. For this purpose a therapy planning module at the medical intensive care unit has been extensively redesigned in order to support the structured documentation of drug prescriptions. After introduction of this new HIS component in January 1996 research has been initiated to establish a basic drug therapy knowledge base. The main components of a knowledge based system have been fully incorporated into the hospital information system WING and are in routine use since December 1996. During a pre-production phase warnings of reminder functions were logged and reviewed by an interdisciplinary team in order to adapt the system to the actual clinical environment. The paper describes experiences during this fine tuning and adaptation process which was necessary to bring a small set of knowledge modules into clinical routine. PMID:9357589

  5. Fine-Tuning the Antimicrobial Profile of Biocompatible Gold Nanoparticles by Sequential Surface Functionalization Using Polyoxometalates and Lysine

    PubMed Central

    Daima, Hemant K.; Selvakannan, P. R.; Shukla, Ravi; Bhargava, Suresh K.; Bansal, Vipul

    2013-01-01

    Antimicrobial action of nanomaterials is typically assigned to the nanomaterial composition, size and/or shape, whereas influence of complex corona stabilizing the nanoparticle surface is often neglected. We demonstrate sequential surface functionalization of tyrosine-reduced gold nanoparticles (AuNPsTyr) with polyoxometalates (POMs) and lysine to explore controlled chemical functionality-driven antimicrobial activity. Our investigations reveal that highly biocompatible gold nanoparticles can be tuned to be a strong antibacterial agent by fine-tuning their surface properties in a controllable manner. The observation from the antimicrobial studies on a gram negative bacterium Escherichia coli were further validated by investigating the anticancer properties of these step-wise surface-controlled materials against A549 human lung carcinoma cells, which showed a similar toxicity pattern. These studies highlight that the nanomaterial toxicity and biological applicability are strongly governed by their surface corona. PMID:24147146

  6. Fine-tuning of process conditions to improve product uniformity of polystyrene particles used for wind tunnel velocimetry

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Ray, Asit K.

    1990-01-01

    Monodisperse polymer particles (having uniform diameter) were used for the last two decades in physical, biological, and chemical sciences. In NASA Langley Research Center monodisperse polystyrene particles are used in wind tunnel laser velocimeters. These polystyrene (PS) particles in latex form were formulated at the Engineering Laboratory of FENGD using emulsion-free emulsion polymerization. Monodisperse PS latices particles having different particle diameters were formulated and useful experimental data involving effects of process conditions on particle size were accumulated. However, similar process conditions and chemical recipes for polymerization of styrene monomer have often yielded monodisperse particles having varying diameters. The purpose was to improve the PS latex product uniformity by fine-tuning the process parameters based on the knowledge of suspension and emulsion polymerization.

  7. A low-phase-noise ring oscillator with coarse and fine tuning in a standard CMOS process

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Haijun, Gao; Lingling, Sun; Xiaofei, Kuang; Liheng, Lou

    2012-07-01

    A low-phase-noise wideband ring oscillator with coarse and fine tuning techniques implemented in a standard 65 nm CMOS process is presented. Direct frequency modulation in the ring oscillator is analyzed and a switched capacitor array is introduced to produce the lower VCO gain required to suppress this effect. A two-dimensional high-density stacked MOM-capacitor was adopted as the switched capacitor to make the proposed ring VCO compatible with standard CMOS processes. The designed ring VCO exhibits an output frequency from 480 to 1100 MHz, resulting in a tuning range of 78%, and the measured phase noise is -120 dBc/Hz @ 1 MHz at 495 MHz output. The VCO core consumes 3.84 mW under a 1.2 V supply voltage and the corresponding FOM is -169 dBc/Hz.

  8. MicroRNA inhibition fine-tunes and provides robustness to the restriction point switch of the cell cycle

    PubMed Central

    del Rosario, Ricardo C. H.; Damasco, Joseph Ray Clarence G.; Aguda, Baltazar D.

    2016-01-01

    The restriction point marks a switch in G1 from growth factor-dependent to growth factor-independent progression of the cell cycle. The proper regulation of this switch is important for normal cell processes; aberrations could result in a number of diseases such as cancer, neurodegenerative disorders, stroke and myocardial infarction. To further understand the regulation of the restriction point, we extended a mathematical model of the Rb-E2F pathway to include members of the microRNA cluster miR-17-92. Our mathematical analysis shows that microRNAs play an essential role in fine-tuning and providing robustness to the switch. We also demonstrate how microRNA regulation can steer cells in or out of cancer states. PMID:27610602

  9. Investigation of double-mode operation and fast fine tuning properties of a grating-coupled external cavity diode laser configuration

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bayrakli, Ismail

    2017-01-01

    Double-mode operation and fast piezo fine tuning properties of a gain chip on a thermoelectric cooler in an external cavity are investigated. A widely course double-mode tuning range of 120 nm for the spectral range between 1470 and 1590 nm is achieved by rotating the diffraction gratings forming a double Littrow-type configuration. A fast piezo fine tuning range over 7cm-1 (1.5 nm, 210 GHz) in a single-mode operation is obtained by scanning the external cavity length with scan rates up to 0.5 kHz.

  10. Fine-tuning the onset of myogenesis by homeobox proteins that interact with the Myf5 limb enhancer.

    PubMed

    Daubas, Philippe; Duval, Nathalie; Bajard, Lola; Langa Vives, Francina; Robert, Benoît; Mankoo, Baljinder S; Buckingham, Margaret

    2015-11-04

    Skeletal myogenesis in vertebrates is initiated at different sites of skeletal muscle formation during development, by activation of specific control elements of the myogenic regulatory genes. In the mouse embryo, Myf5 is the first myogenic determination gene to be expressed and its spatiotemporal regulation requires multiple enhancer sequences, extending over 120 kb upstream of the Mrf4-Myf5 locus. An enhancer, located at -57/-58 kb from Myf5, is responsible for its activation in myogenic cells derived from the hypaxial domain of the somite, that will form limb muscles. Pax3 and Six1/4 transcription factors are essential activators of this enhancer, acting on a 145-bp core element. Myogenic progenitor cells that will form the future muscle masses of the limbs express the factors necessary for Myf5 activation when they delaminate from the hypaxial dermomyotome and migrate into the forelimb bud, however they do not activate Myf5 and the myogenic programme until they have populated the prospective muscle masses. We show that Msx1 and Meox2 homeodomain-containing transcription factors bind in vitro and in vivo to specific sites in the 145-bp element, and are implicated in fine-tuning activation of Myf5 in the forelimb. Msx1, when bound between Pax and Six sites, prevents the binding of these key activators, thus inhibiting transcription of Myf5 and consequent premature myogenic differentiation. Meox2 is required for Myf5 activation at the onset of myogenesis via direct binding to other homeodomain sites in this sequence. Thus, these homeodomain factors, acting in addition to Pax3 and Six1/4, fine-tune the entry of progenitor cells into myogenesis at early stages of forelimb development.

  11. In response to partial plant shading, the lack of phytochrome A does not directly induce leaf senescence but alters the fine-tuning of chlorophyll biosynthesis.

    PubMed

    Brouwer, Bastiaan; Gardeström, Per; Keech, Olivier

    2014-07-01

    Phytochrome is thought to control the induction of leaf senescence directly, however, the signalling and molecular mechanisms remain unclear. In the present study, an ecophysiological approach was used to establish a functional connection between phytochrome signalling and the physiological processes underlying the induction of leaf senescence in response to shade. With shade it is important to distinguish between complete and partial shading, during which either the whole or only a part of the plant is shaded, respectively. It is first shown here that, while PHYB is required to maintain chlorophyll content in a completely shaded plant, only PHYA is involved in maintaining the leaf chlorophyll content in response to partial plant shading. Second, it is shown that leaf yellowing associated with strong partial shading in phyA-mutant plants actually correlates to a decreased biosynthesis of chlorophyll rather than to an increase of its degradation. Third, it is shown that the physiological impact of this decreased biosynthesis of chlorophyll in strongly shaded phyA-mutant leaves is accompanied by a decreased capacity to adjust the Light Compensation Point. However, the increased leaf yellowing in phyA-mutant plants is not accompanied by an increase of senescence-specific molecular markers, which argues against a direct role of PHYA in inducing leaf senescence in response to partial shade. In conclusion, it is proposed that PHYA, but not PHYB, is essential for fine-tuning the chlorophyll biosynthetic pathway in response to partial shading. In turn, this mechanism allows the shaded leaf to adjust its photosynthetic machinery to very low irradiances, thus maintaining a positive carbon balance and repressing the induction of leaf senescence, which can occur under prolonged periods of shade. © The Author 2014. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the Society for Experimental Biology.

  12. In response to partial plant shading, the lack of phytochrome A does not directly induce leaf senescence but alters the fine-tuning of chlorophyll biosynthesis

    PubMed Central

    Brouwer, Bastiaan; Gardeström, Per; Keech, Olivier

    2014-01-01

    Phytochrome is thought to control the induction of leaf senescence directly, however, the signalling and molecular mechanisms remain unclear. In the present study, an ecophysiological approach was used to establish a functional connection between phytochrome signalling and the physiological processes underlying the induction of leaf senescence in response to shade. With shade it is important to distinguish between complete and partial shading, during which either the whole or only a part of the plant is shaded, respectively. It is first shown here that, while PHYB is required to maintain chlorophyll content in a completely shaded plant, only PHYA is involved in maintaining the leaf chlorophyll content in response to partial plant shading. Second, it is shown that leaf yellowing associated with strong partial shading in phyA-mutant plants actually correlates to a decreased biosynthesis of chlorophyll rather than to an increase of its degradation. Third, it is shown that the physiological impact of this decreased biosynthesis of chlorophyll in strongly shaded phyA-mutant leaves is accompanied by a decreased capacity to adjust the Light Compensation Point. However, the increased leaf yellowing in phyA-mutant plants is not accompanied by an increase of senescence-specific molecular markers, which argues against a direct role of PHYA in inducing leaf senescence in response to partial shade. In conclusion, it is proposed that PHYA, but not PHYB, is essential for fine-tuning the chlorophyll biosynthetic pathway in response to partial shading. In turn, this mechanism allows the shaded leaf to adjust its photosynthetic machinery to very low irradiances, thus maintaining a positive carbon balance and repressing the induction of leaf senescence, which can occur under prolonged periods of shade. PMID:24604733

  13. Fine-tuning of atomic point charges: Classical simulations of pyridine in different environments

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Macchiagodena, Marina; Mancini, Giordano; Pagliai, Marco; Del Frate, Gianluca; Barone, Vincenzo

    2017-06-01

    A correct description of electrostatic contributions in force fields for classical simulations is mandatory for an accurate modeling of molecular interactions in pure liquids or solutions. Here, we propose a new protocol for point charge fitting, aimed to take into the proper account different polarization effects due to the environment employing virtual sites and tuning the point charge within the polarizable continuum model framework. The protocol has been validated by means of molecular dynamics simulations on pure pyridine liquid and on pyridine aqueous solution, reproducing a series of experimental observables and providing the information for their correct interpretation at atomic level.

  14. Over 11% Efficiency in Tandem Polymer Solar Cells Featured by a Low-Band-Gap Polymer with Fine-Tuned Properties.

    PubMed

    Zheng, Zhong; Zhang, Shaoqing; Zhang, Jianqi; Qin, Yunpeng; Li, Wanning; Yu, Runnan; Wei, Zhixiang; Hou, Jianhui

    2016-07-01

    Highly efficient polymer solar cells with tandem structure are fabricated by using two excellent photovoltaic polymers and a highly transparent intermediate recombination layer. Power conversion efficiencies over 11% can be realized featured by a low-band-gap polymer with fine-tuned properties.

  15. 9-fluorenemethanol: an internal electron donor to fine tune olefin polymerization activity.

    PubMed

    Gnanakumar, Edwin S; Rao Chokkapu, Eswara; Kunjir, Shrikant; Ajithkumar, T G; Rajamohanan, P R; Chakraborty, Debashis; Gopinath, Chinnakonda S

    2014-06-28

    A new MgCl2 based molecular adduct has been synthesized with 9-fluorenemethanol (9FM) as a novel internal electron donor (IED), along with ethanol (EtOH) (MgCl2·n9FM·xEtOH). The above molecular adduct has been subjected to a variety of structural, spectroscopic and morphological characterization techniques. The results of the solid state (13)C CPMAS NMR technique suggests the coordination of 9FM to MgCl2. Observation of a low angle diffraction peak at 2θ = 5.7° (d = 15.5 Å) underscores the coordination of 9FM along the z-axis, and ethanol in the molecular adduct. Active Ziegler-Natta catalysts were prepared by two different synthesis methods; the conventional method to obtain a high surface area active catalyst, and other one with 9FM as an integral part of the active catalyst in order to study the influence of 9FM as an IED over the active sites. The active catalysts were also characterized thoroughly with different analytical tools. The XRD results show (003) facets of δ-MgCl2 (α-MgCl2) for the conventional (non-conventional) titanated catalyst. Results of the ethylene polymerization activity study reveals that the conventionally prepared highly porous active catalyst shows 1.7-2.5 times higher activity than the non-conventional prepared catalyst; however, the latter shows a low molecular weight distribution and confirms the role of the Lewis base as an IED.

  16. MicroRNA-15a fine-tunes the level of Delta-like 1 homolog (DLK1) in proliferating 3T3-L1 preadipocytes

    SciTech Connect

    Andersen, Ditte C.; Schneider, Mikael; Eskildsen, Tilde; Teisner, Borge; and others

    2010-06-10

    Delta like 1 homolog (Dlk1) exists in both transmembrane and soluble molecular forms, and is implicated in cellular growth and plays multiple roles in development, tissue regeneration, and cancer. Thus, DLK1 levels are critical for cell function, and abnormal DLK1 expression can be lethal; however, little is known about the underlying mechanisms. We here report that miR-15a modulates DLK1 levels in preadipocytes thus providing a mechanism for DLK1 regulation that further links it to cell cycle arrest and cancer since miR-15a is deregulated in these processes. In preadipocytes, miR-15a increases with cell density, and peaks at the same stage where membrane DLK1{sup M} and soluble DLK1{sup S} are found at maximum levels. Remarkably, miR-15a represses the amount of all Dlk1 variants at the mRNA level but also the level of DLK1{sup M} protein while it increases the amount of DLK1{sup S} supporting a direct repression of DLK1 and a parallel effect on the protease that cleaves off the DLK1 from the membrane. In agreement with previous studies, we found that miR-15a represses cell numbers, but additionally, we report that miR-15a also increases cell size. Conversely, anti-miR-15a treatment decreases cell size while increasing cell numbers, scenarios that were completely rescued by addition of purified DLK1{sup S}. Our data thus imply that miR-15a regulates cell size and proliferation by fine-tuning Dlk1 among others, and further emphasize miR-15a and DLK1 levels to play important roles in growth signaling networks.

  17. Fine tuning the ionic liquid-vacuum outer atomic surface using ion mixtures.

    PubMed

    Villar-Garcia, Ignacio J; Fearn, Sarah; Ismail, Nur L; McIntosh, Alastair J S; Lovelock, Kevin R J

    2015-03-28

    Ionic liquid-vacuum outer atomic surfaces can be created that are remarkably different from the bulk composition. In this communication we demonstrate, using low-energy ion scattering (LEIS), that for ionic liquid mixtures the outer atomic surface shows significantly more atoms from anions with weaker cation-anion interactions (and vice versa).

  18. Fine Tuning of Chlorophyll Spectra by Protein-Induced Ring Deformation.

    PubMed

    Bednarczyk, Dominika; Dym, Orly; Prabahar, Vadivel; Peleg, Yoav; Pike, Douglas H; Noy, Dror

    2016-06-06

    The ability to tune the light-absorption properties of chlorophylls by their protein environment is the key to the robustness and high efficiency of photosynthetic light-harvesting proteins. Unfortunately, the intricacy of the natural complexes makes it very difficult to identify and isolate specific protein-pigment interactions that underlie the spectral-tuning mechanisms. Herein we identify and demonstrate the tuning mechanism of chlorophyll spectra in type II water-soluble chlorophyll binding proteins from Brassicaceae (WSCPs). By comparing the molecular structures of two natural WSCPs we correlate a shift in the chlorophyll red absorption band with deformation of its tetrapyrrole macrocycle that is induced by changing the position of a nearby tryptophan residue. We show by a set of reciprocal point mutations that this change accounts for up to 2/3 of the observed spectral shift between the two natural variants. © 2016 WILEY-VCH Verlag GmbH & Co. KGaA, Weinheim.

  19. Stellar helium burning in other universes: A solution to the triple alpha fine-tuning problem

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Adams, Fred C.; Grohs, Evan

    2017-01-01

    Motivated by the possible existence of other universes, with different values for the fundamental constants, this paper considers stellar models in universes where 8Be is stable. Many previous authors have noted that stars in our universe would have difficulty producing carbon and other heavy elements in the absence of the well-known 12C resonance at 7.6 MeV. This resonance is necessary because 8Be is unstable in our universe, so that carbon must be produced via the triple alpha reaction to achieve the requisite abundance. Although a moderate change in the energy of the resonance (200-300 keV) will indeed affect carbon production, an even smaller change in the binding energy of beryllium (∼100 keV) would allow 8Be to be stable. A stable isotope with A = 8 would obviate the need for the triple alpha process in general, and the 12C resonance in particular, for carbon production. This paper explores the possibility that 8Be can be stable in other universes. Simple nuclear considerations indicate that bound states can be realized, with binding energy ∼ 0.1 - 1 MeV, if the fundamental constants vary by a ∼ few - 10 %. In such cases, 8Be can be synthesized through helium burning, and 12C can be produced later through nuclear burning of beryllium. This paper focuses on stellar models that burn helium into beryllium; once the universe in question has a supply of stable beryllium, carbon production can take place during subsequent evolution in the same star or in later stellar generations. Using both a semi-analytic stellar structure model as well as a state-of-the-art stellar evolution code, we find that viable stellar configurations that produce beryllium exist over a wide range of parameter space. Finally, we demonstrate that carbon can be produced during later evolutionary stages.

  20. EARLY FLOWERING3 Redundancy Fine-Tunes Photoperiod Sensitivity1[OPEN

    PubMed Central

    Rubenach, Andrew J.S.; Vander Schoor, Jacqueline K.; Aubert, Gregoire; Burstin, Judith

    2017-01-01

    Three pea (Pisum sativum) loci controlling photoperiod sensitivity, HIGH RESPONSE (HR), DIE NEUTRALIS (DNE), and STERILE NODES (SN), have recently been shown to correspond to orthologs of Arabidopsis (Arabidopsis thaliana) circadian clock genes EARLY FLOWERING3 (ELF3), ELF4, and LUX ARRHYTHMO, respectively. A fourth pea locus, PHOTOPERIOD (PPD), also contributes to the photoperiod response in a similar manner to SN and DNE, and recessive ppd mutants on a spring-flowering hr mutant background show early, photoperiod-insensitive flowering. However, the molecular identity of PPD has so far remained elusive. Here, we show that the PPD locus also has a role in maintenance of diurnal and circadian gene expression rhythms and identify PPD as an ELF3 co-ortholog, termed ELF3b. Genetic interactions between pea ELF3 genes suggest that loss of PPD function does not affect flowering time in the presence of functional HR, whereas PPD can compensate only partially for the lack of HR. These results provide an illustration of how gene duplication and divergence can generate potential for the emergence of more subtle variations in phenotype that may be adaptively significant. PMID:28202598

  1. Fine tuning of the temporal expression of HTLV-1 and HTLV-2

    PubMed Central

    Cavallari, Ilaria; Rende, Francesca; Bender, Cecilia; Romanelli, Maria G.; D'Agostino, Donna M.; Ciminale, Vincenzo

    2013-01-01

    Human T-cell leukemia virus types 1 and 2 (HTLV-1 and HTLV-2) are delta retroviruses that share a common overall genetic organization, splicing pattern, and ability to infect and immortalize T-cells in vitro. However, HTLV-1 and HTLV-2 exhibit a clearly distinct pathogenic potential in infected patients. To find clues to the possible viral determinants of the biology of these viruses, recent studies investigated the timing of expression and the intracellular compartmentalization of viral transcripts in ex-vivo samples from infected patients. Results of these studies revealed a common overall pattern of expression of HTLV-1 and -2 with a two-phase kinetics of expression and a nuclear accumulation of minus-strand transcripts. Studies in cells transfected with HTLV-1 molecular clones demonstrated the strict Rex-dependency of this “two-phase” kinetics. These studies also highlighted interesting differences in the relative abundance of transcripts encoding the Tax and Rex regulatory proteins, and that of the accessory proteins controlling Rex expression and function, thus suggesting a potential basis for the different pathobiology of the two viruses. PMID:24032027

  2. Fine tuning of reactive oxygen species homeostasis regulates primed immune responses in Arabidopsis.

    PubMed

    Pastor, Victoria; Luna, Estrella; Ton, Jurriaan; Cerezo, Miguel; García-Agustín, Pilar; Flors, Victor

    2013-11-01

    Selected stimuli can prime the plant immune system for a faster and stronger defense reaction to pathogen attack. Pretreatment of Arabidopsis with the chemical agent β-aminobutyric acid (BABA) augmented H2O2 and callose production after induction with the pathogen-associated molecular pattern (PAMP) chitosan, or inoculation with the necrotrophic fungus Plectosphaerella cucumerina. However, BABA failed to prime H2O2 and callose production after challenge with the bacterial PAMP Flg22. Analysis of Arabidopsis mutants in reactive oxygen species (ROS) production (rbohD) or ROS scavenging (pad2, vtc1, and cat2) suggested a regulatory role for ROS homeostasis in priming of chitosan- and P. cucumerina-inducible callose and ROS. Moreover, rbohD and pad2 were both impaired in BABA-induced resistance against P. cucumerina. Gene expression analysis revealed direct induction of NADPH/respiratory burst oxidase protein D (RBOHD), γ-glutamylcysteine synthetase 1 (GSH1), and vitamin C defective 1 (VTC1) genes after BABA treatment. Conversely, ascorbate peroxidase 1 (APX1) transcription was repressed by BABA after challenge with chitosan or P. cucumerina, probably to provide a more oxidized environment in the cell and facilitate augmented ROS accumulation. Measuring ratios between reduced and oxidized glutathione confirmed that augmented defense expression in primed plants is associated with a more oxidized cellular status. Together, our data indicate that an altered ROS equilibrium is required for augmented defense expression in primed plants.

  3. Sequence variation between 462 human individuals fine-tunes functional sites of RNA processing.

    PubMed

    Ferreira, Pedro G; Oti, Martin; Barann, Matthias; Wieland, Thomas; Ezquina, Suzana; Friedländer, Marc R; Rivas, Manuel A; Esteve-Codina, Anna; Rosenstiel, Philip; Strom, Tim M; Lappalainen, Tuuli; Guigó, Roderic; Sammeth, Michael

    2016-09-12

    Recent advances in the cost-efficiency of sequencing technologies enabled the combined DNA- and RNA-sequencing of human individuals at the population-scale, making genome-wide investigations of the inter-individual genetic impact on gene expression viable. Employing mRNA-sequencing data from the Geuvadis Project and genome sequencing data from the 1000 Genomes Project we show that the computational analysis of DNA sequences around splice sites and poly-A signals is able to explain several observations in the phenotype data. In contrast to widespread assessments of statistically significant associations between DNA polymorphisms and quantitative traits, we developed a computational tool to pinpoint the molecular mechanisms by which genetic markers drive variation in RNA-processing, cataloguing and classifying alleles that change the affinity of core RNA elements to their recognizing factors. The in silico models we employ further suggest RNA editing can moonlight as a splicing-modulator, albeit less frequently than genomic sequence diversity. Beyond existing annotations, we demonstrate that the ultra-high resolution of RNA-Seq combined from 462 individuals also provides evidence for thousands of bona fide novel elements of RNA processing-alternative splice sites, introns, and cleavage sites-which are often rare and lowly expressed but in other characteristics similar to their annotated counterparts.

  4. ABA signalling is fine-tuned by antagonistic HAB1 variants.

    PubMed

    Wang, Zhijuan; Ji, Hongtao; Yuan, Bingjian; Wang, Shuangfeng; Su, Chao; Yao, Bin; Zhao, Hongtao; Li, Xia

    2015-09-25

    Group A protein type 2C phosphatases (PP2Cs) are negative regulators of abscisic acid (ABA) signalling and plant adaptation to stress. However, our knowledge of the regulation of PP2C activity is limited. Here we report that the PP2C HAB1 undergoes alternative splicing to produce two splice variants, which encode HAB1.1 and HAB1.2, that play opposing roles in ABA-mediated seed germination and ABA-mediated post-germination developmental arrest. HAB1.2 is predominately formed in the presence of ABA and prevents seed germination and post-germinative growth. HAB1.2 interacts with OST1, but cannot inhibit OST1 kinase activity; thus, it functions as a positive regulator of ABA signalling. We also identified an RNA-recognition motif-containing protein, RBM25, as a potential regulator of HAB1 alternative splicing and molecular diversity. Our results reveal a mechanism for turning ABA signalling on and off and for plant adaptation to abiotic stress.

  5. Sequence variation between 462 human individuals fine-tunes functional sites of RNA processing

    PubMed Central

    Ferreira, Pedro G.; Oti, Martin; Barann, Matthias; Wieland, Thomas; Ezquina, Suzana; Friedländer, Marc R.; Rivas, Manuel A.; Esteve-Codina, Anna; Estivill, Xavier; Guigó, Roderic; Dermitzakis, Emmanouil; Antonarakis, Stylianos; Meitinger, Thomas; Strom, Tim M; Palotie, Aarno; François Deleuze, Jean; Sudbrak, Ralf; Lerach, Hans; Gut, Ivo; Syvänen, Ann-Christine; Gyllensten, Ulf; Schreiber, Stefan; Rosenstiel, Philip; Brunner, Han; Veltman, Joris; Hoen, Peter A.C.T; Jan van Ommen, Gert; Carracedo, Angel; Brazma, Alvis; Flicek, Paul; Cambon-Thomsen, Anne; Mangion, Jonathan; Bentley, David; Hamosh, Ada; Rosenstiel, Philip; Strom, Tim M; Lappalainen, Tuuli; Guigó, Roderic; Sammeth, Michael

    2016-01-01

    Recent advances in the cost-efficiency of sequencing technologies enabled the combined DNA- and RNA-sequencing of human individuals at the population-scale, making genome-wide investigations of the inter-individual genetic impact on gene expression viable. Employing mRNA-sequencing data from the Geuvadis Project and genome sequencing data from the 1000 Genomes Project we show that the computational analysis of DNA sequences around splice sites and poly-A signals is able to explain several observations in the phenotype data. In contrast to widespread assessments of statistically significant associations between DNA polymorphisms and quantitative traits, we developed a computational tool to pinpoint the molecular mechanisms by which genetic markers drive variation in RNA-processing, cataloguing and classifying alleles that change the affinity of core RNA elements to their recognizing factors. The in silico models we employ further suggest RNA editing can moonlight as a splicing-modulator, albeit less frequently than genomic sequence diversity. Beyond existing annotations, we demonstrate that the ultra-high resolution of RNA-Seq combined from 462 individuals also provides evidence for thousands of bona fide novel elements of RNA processing—alternative splice sites, introns, and cleavage sites—which are often rare and lowly expressed but in other characteristics similar to their annotated counterparts. PMID:27617755

  6. Sequence variation between 462 human individuals fine-tunes functional sites of RNA processing

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ferreira, Pedro G.; Oti, Martin; Barann, Matthias; Wieland, Thomas; Ezquina, Suzana; Friedländer, Marc R.; Rivas, Manuel A.; Esteve-Codina, Anna; Estivill, Xavier; Guigó, Roderic; Dermitzakis, Emmanouil; Antonarakis, Stylianos; Meitinger, Thomas; Strom, Tim M.; Palotie, Aarno; François Deleuze, Jean; Sudbrak, Ralf; Lerach, Hans; Gut, Ivo; Syvänen, Ann-Christine; Gyllensten, Ulf; Schreiber, Stefan; Rosenstiel, Philip; Brunner, Han; Veltman, Joris; Hoen, Peter A. C. T.; Jan van Ommen, Gert; Carracedo, Angel; Brazma, Alvis; Flicek, Paul; Cambon-Thomsen, Anne; Mangion, Jonathan; Bentley, David; Hamosh, Ada; Rosenstiel, Philip; Strom, Tim M.; Lappalainen, Tuuli; Guigó, Roderic; Sammeth, Michael

    2016-09-01

    Recent advances in the cost-efficiency of sequencing technologies enabled the combined DNA- and RNA-sequencing of human individuals at the population-scale, making genome-wide investigations of the inter-individual genetic impact on gene expression viable. Employing mRNA-sequencing data from the Geuvadis Project and genome sequencing data from the 1000 Genomes Project we show that the computational analysis of DNA sequences around splice sites and poly-A signals is able to explain several observations in the phenotype data. In contrast to widespread assessments of statistically significant associations between DNA polymorphisms and quantitative traits, we developed a computational tool to pinpoint the molecular mechanisms by which genetic markers drive variation in RNA-processing, cataloguing and classifying alleles that change the affinity of core RNA elements to their recognizing factors. The in silico models we employ further suggest RNA editing can moonlight as a splicing-modulator, albeit less frequently than genomic sequence diversity. Beyond existing annotations, we demonstrate that the ultra-high resolution of RNA-Seq combined from 462 individuals also provides evidence for thousands of bona fide novel elements of RNA processing—alternative splice sites, introns, and cleavage sites—which are often rare and lowly expressed but in other characteristics similar to their annotated counterparts.

  7. Fine-tuning of synaptic upscaling at excitatory synapses by endocannabinoid signaling is mediated via the CB1 receptor

    PubMed Central

    Song, Yunping; Zhang, Jian; Chen, Chu

    2015-01-01

    The endocannabinoid 2-arachidonoylglycerol (2-AG) functions as a retrograde signaling molecule mediating synaptic transmission and plasticity at both inhibitory and excitatory synapses. However, little is known about whether 2-AG signaling is involved in homeostatic regulation of miniature synaptic events at excitatory synapses in response to activity deprivation. Here, we report that chronic blockade of firing by tetrodotoxin (TTX) for two days resulted in increases both in the frequency and amplitude of spontaneous miniature excitatory postsynaptic currents (mEPSCs) in cultured mouse hippocampal neurons. However, treatment with 2-AG alone or JZL184, a potent and selective inhibitor for monoacylglycerol lipase (MAGL) that hydrolyzes 2-AG, induced a CB1 receptor-dependent reduction of the frequency of mEPSCs, but not the amplitude. The TTX-increased frequency was blunted by 2-AG or JZL184 and this effect was eliminated by pharmacological or genetic inhibition of CB1 receptors. In addition, TTX still increased frequency and amplitude of mEPSCs in the presence of CB1 receptor inhibition. Our results suggest that while endocannabinoids are not required for induction of synaptic scaling at excitatory glutamate synapses after chronic activity deprivation, 2-AG signaling may play a role in fine-tuning of synaptic strengths via presynaptically-expressed CB1 receptors. PMID:26541090

  8. 5-Azacytidine-induced Protein 2 (AZI2) Regulates Bone Mass by Fine-tuning Osteoclast Survival*

    PubMed Central

    Maruyama, Kenta; Fukasaka, Masahiro; Uematsu, Satoshi; Takeuchi, Osamu; Kondo, Takeshi; Saitoh, Tatsuya; Martino, Mikaël M.; Akira, Shizuo

    2015-01-01

    5-Azacytidine-induced protein 2 (AZI2) is a TNF receptor (TNFR)-associated factor family member-associated NF-κB activator-binding kinase 1-binding protein that regulates the production of IFNs. A previous in vitro study showed that AZI2 is involved in dendritic cell differentiation. However, the roles of AZI2 in immunity and its pleiotropic functions are unknown in vivo. Here we report that AZI2 knock-out mice exhibit normal dendritic cell differentiation in vivo. However, we found that adult AZI2 knock-out mice have severe osteoporosis due to increased osteoclast longevity. We revealed that the higher longevity of AZI2-deficient osteoclasts is due to an augmented activation of proto-oncogene tyrosine-protein kinase Src (c-Src), which is a critical player in osteoclast survival. We found that AZI2 inhibits c-Src activity by regulating the activation of heat shock protein 90 (Hsp90), a chaperone involved in c-Src dephosphorylation. Furthermore, we demonstrated that AZI2 indirectly inhibits c-Src by interacting with the Hsp90 co-chaperone Cdc37. Strikingly, administration of a c-Src inhibitor markedly prevented bone loss in AZI2 knock-out mice. Together, these findings indicate that AZI2 regulates bone mass by fine-tuning osteoclast survival. PMID:25691576

  9. Finely Tuned Asymmetric Platinum(IV) Anticancer Complexes: Structure-Activity Relationship and Application as Orally Available Prodrugs.

    PubMed

    Yap, Siew Qi; Chin, Chee Fei; Hong Thng, Agnes Hwee; Pang, Yi Yun; Ho, Han Kiat; Ang, Wee Han

    2017-02-20

    Platinum(IV) bis-carboxylates are highly versatile prodrug scaffolds with different axial ligands that can be functionalized while keeping the platinum(II) pharmacophore intact. Using a sequential acylation strategy, we developed a class of Pt(IV) prodrugs of cisplatin with contrasting lipophilic and hydrophilic ligands. We investigated their stability, reduction rates, lipophilicity, aqueous solubility, and antiproliferative efficacies, and assessed for correlations among the parameters that could be useful in drug design. We showed that compounds with high lipophilicity result in better antiproliferative effects in vitro and in vivo, with one of the three compounds tested showing better efficacy than satraplatin against an animal model of colorectal cancer, owing to its higher solubility and lower reduction rates. Our asymmetric Pt(IV) prodrugs may pave the way for a highly predictable, fine-tuned class of orally available Pt(IV) prodrugs for the treatment of colorectal cancer. © 2017 Wiley-VCH Verlag GmbH & Co. KGaA, Weinheim.

  10. Fine Tuning of MOF-505 Analogues To Reduce Low-Pressure Methane Uptake and Enhance Methane Working Capacity.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Mingxing; Zhou, Wei; Pham, Tony; Forrest, Katherine A; Liu, Wenlong; He, Yabing; Wu, Hui; Yildirim, Taner; Chen, Banglin; Space, Brian; Pan, Yi; Zaworotko, Michael J; Bai, Junfeng

    2017-09-11

    We present a crystal engineering strategy to fine tune the pore chemistry and CH4 -storage performance of a family of isomorphic MOFs based upon PCN-14. These MOFs exhibit similar pore size, pore surface, and surface area (around 3000 m(2)  g(-1) ) and were prepared with the goal to enhance CH4 working capacity. [Cu2 (L2)(H2 O)2 ]n (NJU-Bai 41: NJU-Bai for Nanjing University Bai's group), [Cu2 (L3)(H2 O)2 ]n (NJU-Bai 42), and [Cu2 (L4)(DMF)2 ]n (NJU-Bai 43) were prepared and we observed that the CH4 volumetric working capacity and volumetric uptake values are influenced by subtle changes in structure and chemistry. In particular, the CH4 working capacity of NJU-Bai 43 reaches 198 cm(3) (STP: 273.15 K, 1 atm) cm(-3) at 298 K and 65 bar, which is amongst the highest reported for MOFs under these conditions and is much higher than the corresponding value for PCN-14 (157 cm(3) (STP) cm(-3) ). © 2017 Wiley-VCH Verlag GmbH & Co. KGaA, Weinheim.

  11. Transcriptional control of flavonoid biosynthesis: fine-tuning of the MYB-bHLH-WD40 (MBW) complex.

    PubMed

    Li, Shutian

    2014-01-01

    Flavonoids are plant secondary polyphenolic metabolites and fulfil many vital biological functions, offering a valuable metabolic and genetic model for studying transcriptional control of gene expression. Arabidopsis thaliana mainly accumulates 3 types of flavonoids, including flavonols, anthocyanins, and proanthocyanidins (PAs). Flavonoid biosynthesis involves a multitude of well-characterized enzymatic and regulatory proteins. Three R2R3-MYB proteins (MYB11, MYB12, and MYB111) control flavonol biosynthesis via activating the early biosynthetic steps, whereas the production of anthocyanins and PAs requires the MYB-bHLH-WD40 (MBW) complex to activate the late biosynthetic genes. Additional regulators of flavonoid biosynthesis have recently come to light, which interact with R2R3-MYBs or bHLHs to organize or disrupt the formation of the MBW complex, leading to enhanced or compromised flavonoid production. This mini-review gives an overview of how these novel players modulate flavonoid metabolism and thus plant developmental processes and further proposes a fine-tuning mechanism to complete the complex regulatory network controlling flavonoid biosynthesis.

  12. miR-17-92 fine-tunes MYC expression and function to ensure optimal B cell lymphoma growth

    PubMed Central

    Mihailovich, Marija; Bremang, Michael; Spadotto, Valeria; Musiani, Daniele; Vitale, Elena; Varano, Gabriele; Zambelli, Federico; Mancuso, Francesco M.; Cairns, David A.; Pavesi, Giulio; Casola, Stefano; Bonaldi, Tiziana

    2015-01-01

    The synergism between c-MYC and miR-17-19b, a truncated version of the miR-17-92 cluster, is well-documented during tumor initiation. However, little is known about miR-17-19b function in established cancers. Here we investigate the role of miR-17-19b in c-MYC-driven lymphomas by integrating SILAC-based quantitative proteomics, transcriptomics and 3′ untranslated region (UTR) analysis upon miR-17-19b overexpression. We identify over one hundred miR-17-19b targets, of which 40% are co-regulated by c-MYC. Downregulation of a new miR-17/20 target, checkpoint kinase 2 (Chek2), increases the recruitment of HuR to c-MYC transcripts, resulting in the inhibition of c-MYC translation and thus interfering with in vivo tumor growth. Hence, in established lymphomas, miR-17-19b fine-tunes c-MYC activity through a tight control of its function and expression, ultimately ensuring cancer cell homeostasis. Our data highlight the plasticity of miRNA function, reflecting changes in the mRNA landscape and 3′ UTR shortening at different stages of tumorigenesis. PMID:26555894

  13. Angiogenic sprouting requires the fine tuning of endothelial cell cohesion by the Raf-1/Rok-α complex.

    PubMed

    Wimmer, Reiner; Cseh, Botond; Maier, Barbara; Scherrer, Karina; Baccarini, Manuela

    2012-01-17

    Sprouting angiogenesis, crucial for the development of new blood vessels, is a prime example of collective migration in which endothelial cells migrate as a group joined via cadherin-containing adherens junctions (AJ). The actomyosin apparatus is connected to AJ and generates contractile forces, which, depending on their strength and duration, increase or decrease cell cohesion. Thus, appropriate spatiotemporal control of junctional myosin is critical, but the mechanisms underlying it are incompletely understood. We show that Raf-1 is an essential component of this regulatory network and that its ablation impairs endothelial cell cohesion, sprouting, and tumor-induced angiogenesis. Mechanistically, Raf-1 is recruited to VE-cadherin complexes by a mechanism involving the small G protein Rap1 and is required to bring the Rho effector Rok-α to nascent AJs. This Raf-1-mediated fine tuning of Rok-α signaling allows the activation of junctional myosin and the timely maturation of AJ essential for maintaining cell cohesion during sprouting angiogenesis. Copyright © 2012 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  14. Disulfide-activated protein kinase G Iα regulates cardiac diastolic relaxation and fine-tunes the Frank-Starling response.

    PubMed

    Scotcher, Jenna; Prysyazhna, Oleksandra; Boguslavskyi, Andrii; Kistamas, Kornel; Hadgraft, Natasha; Martin, Eva D; Worthington, Jenny; Rudyk, Olena; Rodriguez Cutillas, Pedro; Cuello, Friederike; Shattock, Michael J; Marber, Michael S; Conte, Maria R; Greenstein, Adam; Greensmith, David J; Venetucci, Luigi; Timms, John F; Eaton, Philip

    2016-10-26

    The Frank-Starling mechanism allows the amount of blood entering the heart from the veins to be precisely matched with the amount pumped out to the arterial circulation. As the heart fills with blood during diastole, the myocardium is stretched and oxidants are produced. Here we show that protein kinase G Iα (PKGIα) is oxidant-activated during stretch and this form of the kinase selectively phosphorylates cardiac phospholamban Ser16-a site important for diastolic relaxation. We find that hearts of Cys42Ser PKGIα knock-in (KI) mice, which are resistant to PKGIα oxidation, have diastolic dysfunction and a diminished ability to couple ventricular filling with cardiac output on a beat-to-beat basis. Intracellular calcium dynamics of ventricular myocytes isolated from KI hearts are altered in a manner consistent with impaired relaxation and contractile function. We conclude that oxidation of PKGIα during myocardial stretch is crucial for diastolic relaxation and fine-tunes the Frank-Starling response.

  15. The TORC1 effector kinase Npr1 fine tunes the inherent activity of the Mep2 ammonium transport protein.

    PubMed

    Boeckstaens, Mélanie; Llinares, Elisa; Van Vooren, Pascale; Marini, Anna Maria

    2014-01-01

    The TORC1 complex controls cell growth upon integrating nutritional signals including amino-acid availability. TORC1 notably adapts the plasma membrane protein content by regulating arrestin-mediated endocytosis of amino-acid transporters. Here we demonstrate that TORC1 further fine tunes the inherent activity of the ammonium transport protein, Mep2, a yeast homologue of mammalian Rhesus factors, independently of arrestin-mediated endocytosis. The TORC1 effector kinase Npr1 and the upstream TORC1 regulator Npr2 control Mep2 transport activity by phospho-silencing a carboxy-terminal autoinhibitory domain. Under poor nitrogen supply, Npr1 enables Mep2 S457 phosphorylation and thus ammonium transport activity. Supplementation of the preferred nitrogen source glutamine leads to Mep2 inactivation and instant S457 dephosphorylation via plasma membrane Psr1 and Psr2 redundant phosphatases. This study underscores that TORC1 also adjusts nutrient permeability to regulate cell growth in a fast and flexible response to environmental perturbation, establishing a hierarchy in the transporters to be degraded, inactivated or maintained active at the plasma membrane.

  16. A Negative Feedback Loop between PHYTOCHROME INTERACTING FACTORs and HECATE Proteins Fine-Tunes Photomorphogenesis in Arabidopsis

    PubMed Central

    Zhu, Ling; Bu, Qingyun; Shen, Hui; Dang, Jonathan

    2016-01-01

    The phytochrome interacting factors (PIFs), a small group of basic helix-loop-helix transcription factors, repress photomorphogenesis both in the dark and light. Light signals perceived by the phytochrome family of photoreceptors induce rapid degradation of PIFs to promote photomorphogenesis. Here, we show that HECATE (HEC) proteins, another small group of HLH proteins, antagonistically regulate PIFs to promote photomorphogenesis. HEC1 and HEC2 heterodimerize with PIF family members. PIF1, HEC1, and HEC2 genes are spatially and temporally coexpressed, and HEC2 is localized in the nucleus. hec1, hec2, and hec3 single mutants and the hec1 hec2 double mutant showed hyposensitivity to light-induced seed germination and accumulation of chlorophyll and carotenoids, hallmark processes oppositely regulated by PIF1. HEC2 inhibits PIF1 target gene expression by directly heterodimerizing with PIF1 and preventing DNA binding and transcriptional activation activity of PIF1. Conversely, PIFs directly activate the expression of HEC1 and HEC2 in the dark, and light reduces the expression of these HECs possibly by degrading PIFs. HEC2 is partially degraded in the dark through the ubiquitin/26S-proteasome pathway and is stabilized by light. HEC2 overexpression also reduces the light-induced degradation of PIF1. Taken together, these data suggest that PIFs and HECs constitute a negative feedback loop to fine-tune photomorphogenesis in Arabidopsis thaliana. PMID:27073231

  17. Large-Scale Phenomics Identifies Primary and Fine-Tuning Roles for CRKs in Responses Related to Oxidative Stress

    PubMed Central

    Rayapuram, Channabasavangowda; Idänheimo, Niina; Hunter, Kerri; Kimura, Sachie; Merilo, Ebe; Vaattovaara, Aleksia; Oracz, Krystyna; Kaufholdt, David; Pallon, Andres; Anggoro, Damar Tri; Glów, Dawid; Lowe, Jennifer; Zhou, Ji; Mohammadi, Omid; Puukko, Tuomas; Albert, Andreas; Lang, Hans; Ernst, Dieter; Kollist, Hannes; Brosché, Mikael; Durner, Jörg; Borst, Jan Willem; Collinge, David B.; Karpiński, Stanisław; Lyngkjær, Michael F.; Robatzek, Silke; Wrzaczek, Michael; Kangasjärvi, Jaakko

    2015-01-01

    Cysteine-rich receptor-like kinases (CRKs) are transmembrane proteins characterized by the presence of two domains of unknown function 26 (DUF26) in their ectodomain. The CRKs form one of the largest groups of receptor-like protein kinases in plants, but their biological functions have so far remained largely uncharacterized. We conducted a large-scale phenotyping approach of a nearly complete crk T-DNA insertion line collection showing that CRKs control important aspects of plant development and stress adaptation in response to biotic and abiotic stimuli in a non-redundant fashion. In particular, the analysis of reactive oxygen species (ROS)-related stress responses, such as regulation of the stomatal aperture, suggests that CRKs participate in ROS/redox signalling and sensing. CRKs play general and fine-tuning roles in the regulation of stomatal closure induced by microbial and abiotic cues. Despite their great number and high similarity, large-scale phenotyping identified specific functions in diverse processes for many CRKs and indicated that CRK2 and CRK5 play predominant roles in growth regulation and stress adaptation, respectively. As a whole, the CRKs contribute to specificity in ROS signalling. Individual CRKs control distinct responses in an antagonistic fashion suggesting future potential for using CRKs in genetic approaches to improve plant performance and stress tolerance. PMID:26197346

  18. Fnr (EtrA) acts as a fine-tuning regulator of anaerobic metabolism in Shewanella oneidensis MR-1

    SciTech Connect

    Cruz-Garza, Claribel; Murray, Alison E.; Rodrigues, Jorge L.M.; Gralnick, Jeffrey A.; McCue, Lee Ann; Romine, Margaret F.; Loffler, F. E.; Tiedje, James M.

    2011-03-30

    EtrA in Shewanella oneidensis MR-1, a model organism for study of adaptation to varied redox niches, shares 73.6% and 50.8% amino acid sequence identity with the oxygen-sensing regulators Fnr in E. coli and Anr in Pseudomonas aeruginosa, respectively; however, its regulatory role of anaerobic metabolism in Shewanella spp. is not well understood. The expression of the nap genes, nrfA, cymA and hcp was significantly reduced in etrA deletion mutant EtrA7-1; however, limited anaerobic growth and nitrate reduction occurred, suggesting that multiple regulators control nitrate reduction in this strain. Dimethyl sulfoxide (DMSO) and fumarate reductase gene expression was down regulated at least 2-fold and the EtrA7-1 mutant grew poorly with fumarate and dimethyl sulfoxide (DMSO), suggesting both respiratory pathways are under EtrA control. Transcript analysis further suggested a role of EtrA in prophage activation and down regulation of genes implicated in aerobic metabolism. In contrast to previous studies that attributed a minor regulatory role to EtrA in Shewanella spp., this study demonstrates that EtrA acts as a global transcriptional regulator and confers physiological advantages to strain MR-1 under certain growth conditions. In conjunction with other regulators, EtrA fine-tunes the expression of genes involved in anaerobic metabolism in S. oneidensis strain MR-1.

  19. Comparative phosphoproteome profiling reveals a function of the STN8 kinase in fine-tuning of cyclic electron flow (CEF)

    PubMed Central

    Reiland, Sonja; Finazzi, Giovanni; Endler, Anne; Willig, Adrian; Baerenfaller, Katja; Grossmann, Jonas; Gerrits, Bertran; Rutishauser, Dorothea; Gruissem, Wilhelm; Rochaix, Jean-David; Baginsky, Sacha

    2011-01-01

    Important aspects of photosynthetic electron transport efficiency in chloroplasts are controlled by protein phosphorylation. Two thylakoid-associated kinases, STN7 and STN8, have distinct roles in short- and long-term photosynthetic acclimation to changes in light quality and quantity. Although some substrates of STN7 and STN8 are known, the complexity of this regulatory kinase system implies that currently unknown substrates connect photosynthetic performance with the regulation of metabolic and regulatory functions. We performed an unbiased phosphoproteome-wide screen with Arabidopsis WT and stn8 mutant plants to identify unique STN8 targets. The phosphorylation status of STN7 was not affected in stn8, indicating that kinases other than STN8 phosphorylate STN7 under standard growth conditions. Among several putative STN8 substrates, PGRL1-A is of particular importance because of its possible role in the modulation of cyclic electron transfer. The STN8 phosphorylation site on PGRL1-A is absent in both monocotyledonous plants and algae. In dicots, spectroscopic measurements with Arabidopsis WT, stn7, stn8, and stn7/stn8 double-mutant plants indicate a STN8-mediated slowing down of the transition from cyclic to linear electron flow at the onset of illumination. This finding suggests a possible link between protein phosphorylation by STN8 and fine-tuning of cyclic electron flow during this critical step of photosynthesis, when the carbon assimilation is not commensurate to the electron flow capacity of the chloroplast. PMID:21768351

  20. Disulfide-activated protein kinase G Iα regulates cardiac diastolic relaxation and fine-tunes the Frank–Starling response

    PubMed Central

    Scotcher, Jenna; Prysyazhna, Oleksandra; Boguslavskyi, Andrii; Kistamas, Kornel; Hadgraft, Natasha; Martin, Eva D.; Worthington, Jenny; Rudyk, Olena; Rodriguez Cutillas, Pedro; Cuello, Friederike; Shattock, Michael J.; Marber, Michael S.; Conte, Maria R.; Greenstein, Adam; Greensmith, David J.; Venetucci, Luigi; Timms, John F.; Eaton, Philip

    2016-01-01

    The Frank–Starling mechanism allows the amount of blood entering the heart from the veins to be precisely matched with the amount pumped out to the arterial circulation. As the heart fills with blood during diastole, the myocardium is stretched and oxidants are produced. Here we show that protein kinase G Iα (PKGIα) is oxidant-activated during stretch and this form of the kinase selectively phosphorylates cardiac phospholamban Ser16—a site important for diastolic relaxation. We find that hearts of Cys42Ser PKGIα knock-in (KI) mice, which are resistant to PKGIα oxidation, have diastolic dysfunction and a diminished ability to couple ventricular filling with cardiac output on a beat-to-beat basis. Intracellular calcium dynamics of ventricular myocytes isolated from KI hearts are altered in a manner consistent with impaired relaxation and contractile function. We conclude that oxidation of PKGIα during myocardial stretch is crucial for diastolic relaxation and fine-tunes the Frank–Starling response. PMID:27782102

  1. Fine-tuning of DDES and IDDES formulations to the k-ω shear stress transport model

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gritskevich, M. S.; Garbaruk, A. V.; Menter, F. R.

    2013-06-01

    Modifications are proposed of two recently developed hybrid CFD (computational fluid dynamics) strategies, Delayed Detached Eddy Simulation (DDES), and DDES with Improved wall-modeling capability (IDDES). The modifications are aimed at fine-tuning of these approaches to the k-ω SST (shear stress transport) background RANS (Reynolds-averaged Navier-Stokes) model. The first one includes recalibrated empirical constants in the shielding function of the Spalart-Allmaras (SA) based DDES which are shown to be suboptimal (not providing a needed level of elimination of the Model Stress Depletion (MSD)) for the SST-based DDES model. For the SST-IDDES variant, in addition to that, a simplification of the original SA-based formulation is proposed, which does not cause any visible degradation of the model performance. Both modifications are extensively tested on a range of attached and separated flows (developed channel, backward-facing step, periodic hills, wall-mounted hump, and hydrofoil with trailing edge separation).

  2. Fine tuning of Rac1 and RhoA alters cuspal shapes by remolding the cellular geometry.

    PubMed

    Li, Liwen; Tang, Qinghuang; Nakamura, Takashi; Suh, Jun-Gyo; Ohshima, Hayato; Jung, Han-Sung

    2016-11-28

    The anatomic and functional combinations of cusps and lophs (ridges) define the tooth shape of rodent molars, which distinguishes species. The species-specific cusp patterns result from the spatiotemporal induction of enamel knots (EKs), which require precisely controlled cellular behavior to control the epithelial invagination. Despite the well-defined roles of EK in cusp patterning, the determinants of the ultimate cuspal shapes and involvement of epithelial cellular geometry are unknown. Using two typical tooth patterns, the lophodont in gerbils and the bunodont in mice, we showed that the cuspal shape is determined by the dental epithelium at the cap stage, whereas the cellular geometry in the inner dental epithelium (IDE) is correlated with the cuspal shape. Intriguingly, fine tuning Rac1 and RhoA interconvert cuspal shapes between two species by remolding the cellular geometry. Either inhibition of Rac1 or ectopic expression of RhoA could region-distinctively change the columnar shape of IDE cells in gerbils to drive invagination to produce cusps. Conversely, RhoA reduction in mice inhibited invagination and developed lophs. Furthermore, we found that Rac1 and RhoA modulate the choices of cuspal shape by coordinating adhesion junctions, actin distribution, and fibronectin localization to drive IDE invagination.

  3. The role of post-translational modifications in fine-tuning BLM helicase function during DNA repair

    PubMed Central

    Böhm, Stefanie; Bernstein, Kara Anne

    2014-01-01

    RecQ-like helicases are a highly conserved family of proteins which are critical for preserving genome integrity. Genome instability is considered a hallmark of cancer and mutations within three of the five human RECQ genes cause hereditary syndromes that are associated with cancer predisposition. The human RecQ-like helicase BLM has a central role in DNA damage signaling, repair, replication, and telomere maintenance. BLM and its budding yeast orthologue Sgs1 unwind double-stranded DNA intermediates. Intriguingly, BLM functions in both a pro- and anti-recombinogenic manner upon replicative damage, acting on similar substrates. Thus, BLM activity must be intricately controlled to prevent illegitimate recombination events that could have detrimental effects on genome integrity. In recent years it has become evident that post-translational modifications (PTMs) of BLM allow a fine-tuning of its function. To date, BLM phosphorylation, ubiquitination, and SUMOylation have been identified, in turn regulating its subcellular localization, protein-protein interactions, and protein stability. In this review, we will discuss the cellular context of when and how these different modifications of BLM occur. We will reflect on the current model of how PTMs control BLM function during DNA damage repair and compare this to what is known about post-translational regulation of the budding yeast orthologue Sgs1. Finally, we will provide an outlook towards future research, in particular to dissect the cross-talk between the individual PTMs on BLM. PMID:25150915

  4. Fine-Tuning Translation Kinetics Selection as the Driving Force of Codon Usage Bias in the Hepatitis A Virus Capsid

    PubMed Central

    Aragonès, Lluís; Guix, Susana; Ribes, Enric; Bosch, Albert; Pintó, Rosa M.

    2010-01-01

    Hepatitis A virus (HAV), the prototype of genus Hepatovirus, has several unique biological characteristics that distinguish it from other members of the Picornaviridae family. Among these, the need for an intact eIF4G factor for the initiation of translation results in an inability to shut down host protein synthesis by a mechanism similar to that of other picornaviruses. Consequently, HAV must inefficiently compete for the cellular translational machinery and this may explain its poor growth in cell culture. In this context of virus/cell competition, HAV has strategically adopted a naturally highly deoptimized codon usage with respect to that of its cellular host. With the aim to optimize its codon usage the virus was adapted to propagate in cells with impaired protein synthesis, in order to make tRNA pools more available for the virus. A significant loss of fitness was the immediate response to the adaptation process that was, however, later on recovered and more associated to a re-deoptimization rather than to an optimization of the codon usage specifically in the capsid coding region. These results exclude translation selection and instead suggest fine-tuning translation kinetics selection as the underlying mechanism of the codon usage bias in this specific genome region. Additionally, the results provide clear evidence of the Red Queen dynamics of evolution since the virus has very much evolved to re-adapt its codon usage to the environmental cellular changing conditions in order to recover the original fitness. PMID:20221432

  5. Control of Wnt5b secretion by Wntless modulates chondrogenic cell proliferation through fine-tuning fgf3 expression.

    PubMed

    Wu, Bo-Tsung; Wen, Shih-Hsien; Hwang, Sheng-Ping L; Huang, Chang-Jen; Kuan, Yung-Shu

    2015-06-15

    Wnts and Fgfs regulate various tissues development in vertebrates. However, how regional Wnt or Fgf activities are established and how they interact in any given developmental event is elusive. Here, we investigated the Wnt-mediated craniofacial cartilage development in zebrafish and found that fgf3 expression in the pharyngeal pouches is differentially reduced along the anteroposterior axis in wnt5b mutants and wntless (wls) morphants, but its expression is normal in wnt9a and wnt11 morphants. Introducing fgf3 mRNAs rescued the cartilage defects in Wnt5b- and Wls-deficient larvae. In wls morphants, endogenous Wls expression is not detectable but maternally deposited Wls is present in eggs, which might account for the lack of axis defects in wls morphants. Secretion of endogenous Wnt5b but not Wnt11 was affected in the pharyngeal tissue of Wls morphants, indicating that Wls is not involved in every Wnt secretion event. Furthermore, cell proliferation but not apoptosis in the developing jaw was affected in Wnt5b- and Wls-deficient embryos. Therefore, Wnt5b requires Wls for its secretion and regulates the proliferation of chondrogenic cells through fine-tuning the expression of fgf3 during jaw cartilage development.

  6. Fine tuning of Rac1 and RhoA alters cuspal shapes by remolding the cellular geometry

    PubMed Central

    Li, Liwen; Tang, Qinghuang; Nakamura, Takashi; Suh, Jun-Gyo; Ohshima, Hayato; Jung, Han-Sung

    2016-01-01

    The anatomic and functional combinations of cusps and lophs (ridges) define the tooth shape of rodent molars, which distinguishes species. The species-specific cusp patterns result from the spatiotemporal induction of enamel knots (EKs), which require precisely controlled cellular behavior to control the epithelial invagination. Despite the well-defined roles of EK in cusp patterning, the determinants of the ultimate cuspal shapes and involvement of epithelial cellular geometry are unknown. Using two typical tooth patterns, the lophodont in gerbils and the bunodont in mice, we showed that the cuspal shape is determined by the dental epithelium at the cap stage, whereas the cellular geometry in the inner dental epithelium (IDE) is correlated with the cuspal shape. Intriguingly, fine tuning Rac1 and RhoA interconvert cuspal shapes between two species by remolding the cellular geometry. Either inhibition of Rac1 or ectopic expression of RhoA could region-distinctively change the columnar shape of IDE cells in gerbils to drive invagination to produce cusps. Conversely, RhoA reduction in mice inhibited invagination and developed lophs. Furthermore, we found that Rac1 and RhoA modulate the choices of cuspal shape by coordinating adhesion junctions, actin distribution, and fibronectin localization to drive IDE invagination. PMID:27892530

  7. Fine-tuning the stimulation of MLL1 methyltransferase activity by a histone H3-based peptide mimetic

    SciTech Connect

    Avdic, Vanja; Zhang, Pamela; Lanouette, Sylvain; Voronova, Anastassia; Skerjanc, Ilona; Couture, Jean-Francois

    2011-08-24

    The SET1 family of methyltransferases carries out the bulk of histone H3 Lys-4 methylation in vivo. One of the common features of this family is the regulation of their methyltransferase activity by a tripartite complex composed of WDR5, RbBP5, and Ash2L. To selectively probe the role of the SET1 family of methyltransferases, we have developed a library of histone H3 peptide mimetics and report herein the characterization of an N{alpha} acetylated form of histone H3 peptide (N{alpha}H3). Binding and inhibition studies reveal that the addition of an acetyl moiety to the N terminus of histone H3 significantly enhances its binding to WDR5 and prevents the stimulation of MLL1 methyltransferase activity by the WDR5-RbBP5-Ash2L complex. The crystal structure of N{alpha}H3 in complex with WDR5 reveals that a high-affinity hydrophobic pocket accommodates the binding of the acetyl moiety. These results provide the structural basis to control WDR5-RbBP5-Ash2L-MLL1 activity and a tool to manipulate stem cell differentiation programs.-Avdic, V., Zhang, P., Lanouette, S., Voronova, A., Skerjanc, I., Couture, J.-F. Fine-tuning the stimulation of MLL1 methyltransferase activity by a histone H3-based peptide mimetic.

  8. Fine-tuning the space, time, and host distribution of mycobacteria in wildlife

    PubMed Central

    2011-01-01

    molecular typing for surveys at small spatial and temporal scales. PMID:21288321

  9. Fine-tune the spectrum of indium-tin-oxide nanorod arrays in the visible range

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Guo, Peijun; Diroll, Benjamin T.; Ketterson, John B.; Schaller, Richard D.; Chang, Robert P. H.

    2016-09-01

    All-optical modulation of light using metallic nanostructures can potentially enable processing of information with speed in the terahertz range. This is because the optical nonlinearity of metals dictated by the electron-phonon coupling is intrinsically fast. Nobel metals have achieved great success to this end due to their superior plasmonic properties in the visible. However, each type of noble metals only works in a specific wavelength range and therefore broadband spectral response covering the wide visible spectrum can be a challenge. Here we introduce indium-tin-oxide nanorod arrays (ITO-NRAs) which exhibit broadband response covering the visible spectrum. We show that the static spectral response of ITO-NRAs does not depend on the incident polarization and is insensitive to whether the lattice is a square or a rectangle. We further demonstrate that the transmission spectrum can be slightly shifted by changing the sample temperature, as well as adjusting the doping concentration which can be achieved by annealing the sample in oxygen rich environments. When pumped by an optical pulse with photon energy above the bandgap, the transmission can be modified in the entire visible range. These preliminary results show that ITONRAs offer unique opportunities for all-optical modulation in optical frequencies.

  10. Ethylene-Regulated Glutamate Dehydrogenase Fine-Tunes Metabolism during Anoxia-Reoxygenation.

    PubMed

    Tsai, Kuen-Jin; Lin, Chih-Yu; Ting, Chen-Yun; Shih, Ming-Che

    2016-11-01

    Ethylene is an essential hormone in plants that is involved in low-oxygen and reoxygenation responses. As a key transcription factor in ethylene signaling, ETHYLENE INSENSITIVE3 (EIN3) activates targets that trigger various responses. However, most of these targets are still poorly characterized. Through analyses of our microarray data and the published Arabidopsis (Arabidopsis thaliana) EIN3 chromatin immunoprecipitation sequencing data set, we inferred the putative targets of EIN3 during anoxia-reoxygenation. Among them, GDH2, which encodes one subunit of glutamate dehydrogenase (GDH), was chosen for further studies for its role in tricarboxylic acid cycle replenishment. We demonstrated that both GDH1 and GDH2 are induced during anoxia and reoxygenation and that this induction is mediated via ethylene signaling. In addition, the results of enzymatic assays showed that the level of GDH during anoxia-reoxygenation decreased in the ethylene-insensitive mutants ein2-5 and ein3eil1 Global metabolite analysis indicated that the deamination activity of GDH might regenerate 2-oxoglutarate, which is a cosubstrate that facilitates the breakdown of alanine by alanine aminotransferase when reoxygenation occurs. Moreover, ineffective tricarboxylic acid cycle replenishment, disturbed carbohydrate metabolism, reduced phytosterol biosynthesis, and delayed energy regeneration were found in gdh1gdh2 and ethylene mutants during reoxygenation. Taken together, these data illustrate the essential role of EIN3-regulated GDH activity in metabolic adjustment during anoxia-reoxygenation.

  11. Small regulatory RNAs and the fine-tuning of plant–bacteria interactions.

    PubMed

    Harfouche, Lamia; Haichar, Feth el Zahar; Achouak, Wafa

    2015-04-01

    Small regulatory RNAs (sRNAs) play a key role in many physiological and adaptive responses in bacteria. Faced with rapidly changing environments, it is more advantageous for bacteria to use sRNA-mediated responses than regulation by protein transcriptional factors, as sRNAs act at the post-transcriptional level and require less energy and time for their synthesis and turnover. The use of RNA deep sequencing has provided hundreds of sRNA candidates in different bacterial species that interact with plants. Here, we review the most recent results for the involvement of bacterial sRNAs in beneficial as well as deleterious plant–bacteria interactions. We describe the current view for the role of sRNAs, which are suggested to improve competition for both niches and resources in plant-interacting bacteria. These sRNAs also help plant-associated bacteria individually adapt to the rapidly changing conditions to which they are exposed, during different stages of this interaction.

  12. Fine tuning of process parameters for improving briquette production from palm kernel shell gasification waste.

    PubMed

    Bazargan, Alireza; Rough, Sarah L; McKay, Gordon

    2017-05-05

    Palm kernel shell biochars (PKSB) ejected as residues from a gasifier have been used for solid fuel briquette production. With this approach, palm kernel shells can be used for energy production twice: first, by producing rich syngas during gasification; second, by compacting the leftover residues from gasification into high calorific value briquettes. Herein, the process parameters for the manufacture of PKSB biomass briquettes via compaction are optimized. Two possible optimum process scenarios are considered. In the first, the compaction speed is increased from 0.5 to 10 mm/s, the compaction pressure is decreased from 80 Pa to 40 MPa, the retention time is reduced from 10 s to zero, and the starch binder content of the briquette is halved from 0.1 to 0.05 kg/kg. With these adjustments, the briquette production rate increases by more than 20-fold; hence capital and operational costs can be reduced and the service life of compaction equipment can be increased. The resulting product satisfactorily passes tensile (compressive) crushing strength and impact resistance tests. The second scenario involves reducing the starch weight content to 0.03 kg/kg, while reducing the compaction pressure to a value no lower than 60 MPa. Overall, in both cases, the PKSB biomass briquettes show excellent potential as a solid fuel with calorific values on par with good-quality coal. CHNS: carbon, hydrogen, nitrogen, sulfur; FFB: fresh fruit bunch(es); HHV: higher heating value [J/kg]; LHV: lower heating value [J/kg]; PKS: palm kernel shell(s); PKSB: palm kernel shell biochar(s); POME: palm oil mill effluent; RDF: refuse-derived fuel; TGA: thermogravimetric analysis.

  13. Catecholamines as immunomodulators: a role for adrenoceptor-mediated mechanisms in fine tuning of T-cell development.

    PubMed

    Leposavić, Gordana; Pilipović, Ivan; Radojević, Katarina; Pesić, Vesna; Perisić, Milica; Kosec, Dusko

    2008-12-15

    In its simplest form, effective T cell-mediated immunity emanates from the expansion of specific T cells activated in response to antigen. In establishing and maintaining the peripheral T-cell pool, the thymus plays a critical role. It does so by providing a microenvironment within which T-cell precursors proliferate, differentiate and undergo selection processes to create a fully functional population of major histocompatibility complex restricted, self-tolerant T cells. The control of the thymic function involves intrathymic, as well as sympathetic nervous and endocrine system signalling. In addition to postganglionic noradrenergic fibres, both thymic lymphoid and non-lymphoid cells, including epithelial cells and macrophages, have been demonstrated to express tyrosine hydroxylase (TH), and suggested to form a local non-neural catecholaminergic cell network. A higher level of noradrenaline has been found in male than in female rat thymi, and a role of gonadal hormones in providing this dimorphism has been demonstrated. In addition, thymic lymphoid and non-lymphoid cells, including those expressing TH, have been found to bear beta- and alpha1-adrenoceptors (ARs) and a role of gonadal hormones in regulation of, at least, beta-AR density and signalling has been suggested. These findings have also entailed conclusion that catecholamines (CAs) influence T-cell development, not only via neurocrine/endocrine, but also via autocrine/paracrine action. Generally, CAs have been shown to exert an inhibitory influence on thymopoiesis. Role of alpha1- and beta-AR-mediated mechanisms in maintaining thymic homeostasis and in fine tuning of both conventional and regulatory T-cell development is discussed in the manuscript.

  14. Fine-Tuning of the Cpx Envelope Stress Response Is Required for Cell Wall Homeostasis in Escherichia coli

    PubMed Central

    Delhaye, Antoine; Collet, Jean-François

    2016-01-01

    ABSTRACT The envelope of Gram-negative bacteria is an essential compartment that constitutes a protective and permeability barrier between the cell and its environment. The envelope also hosts the cell wall, a mesh-like structure made of peptidoglycan (PG) that determines cell shape and provides osmotic protection. Since the PG must grow and divide in a cell-cycle-synchronized manner, its synthesis and remodeling are tightly regulated. Here, we discovered that PG homeostasis is intimately linked to the levels of activation of the Cpx system, an envelope stress response system traditionally viewed as being involved in protein quality control in the envelope. We first show that Cpx is activated when PG integrity is challenged and that this activation provides protection to cells exposed to antibiotics inhibiting PG synthesis. By rerouting the outer membrane lipoprotein NlpE, a known Cpx activator, to a different envelope subcompartment, we managed to manipulate Cpx activation levels. We found that Cpx overactivation leads to aberrant cellular morphologies, to an increased sensitivity to β-lactams, and to dramatic division and growth defects, consistent with a loss of PG homeostasis. Remarkably, these phenotypes were largely abrogated by the deletion of ldtD, a Cpx-induced gene involved in noncanonical PG cross-linkage, suggesting that this transpeptidase is an important link between PG homeostasis and the Cpx system. Altogether our data show that fine-tuning of an envelope quality control system constitutes an important layer of regulation of the highly organized cell wall structure. PMID:26908573

  15. The S1 Helix Critically Regulates the Finely-tuned Gating of Kv11.1 Channels.

    PubMed

    Phan, Kevin; Ng, Chai Ann; David, Erikka; Shishmarev, Dmitry; Kuchel, Philip W; Vandenberg, Jamie I; Perry, Matthew D

    2017-03-09

    Congenital mutations in the cardiac Kv11.1 channel can cause long QT syndrome type 2 (LQTS2), a heart rhythm disorder associated with sudden cardiac death. Mutations act either by reducing protein expression at the membrane, and/or by perturbing the intricate gating properties of Kv11.1 channels. A number of clinical LQTS2-associated mutations have been reported in the first transmembrane segment (S1) of Kv11.1 channels but the role of this region of the channel is largely unexplored. In part this is due to problems defining the extent of the S1 helix, as a consequence of its low sequence homology with other Kv family members. Here we used NMR spectroscopy and electrophysiological characterization to show that the S1 of Kv11.1 channels extends seven helical turns, from Pro405 to Phe431, and is flanked by unstructured loops. Functional analysis suggests that pre-S1 loop residues His402 and Tyr403 play an important role in regulating the kinetics and voltage dependence of channel activation and deactivation. Multiple residues within the S1 helix also play an important role in fine-tuning the voltage dependence of activation, regulating slow deactivation, and modulating C-type inactivation of Kv11.1 channels. Analyses of LQTS2-associated mutations in the pre-S1 loop or S1 helix of Kv11.1 channels demonstrate perturbations to both protein expression and most gating transitions. Thus S1 region mutations would reduce both the action potential repolarizing current passed by Kv11.1 channels in cardiac myocytes, as well as the current passed in response to premature depolarizations that normally helps protect against the formation of ectopic beats.

  16. Fine-tuning of Hh signaling by the RNA-binding protein Quaking to control muscle development.

    PubMed

    Lobbardi, Riadh; Lambert, Guillaume; Zhao, Jue; Geisler, Robert; Kim, Hyejeong R; Rosa, Frederic M

    2011-05-01

    The development of the different muscles within the somite is a complex process that involves the Hedgehog (Hh) signaling pathway. To specify the proper number of muscle cells and organize them spatially and temporally, the Hh signaling pathway needs to be precisely regulated at different levels, but only a few factors external to the pathway have been described. Here, we report for the first time the role of the STAR family RNA-binding protein Quaking A (QkA) in somite muscle development. We show in zebrafish that the loss of QkA function affects fast muscle fiber maturation as well as Hh-induced muscle derivative specification and/or morphogenesis. Mosaic analysis reveals that fast fiber maturation depends on the activity of QkA in the environment of fast fiber progenitors. We further show that Hh signaling requires QkA activity for muscle development. By an in silico approach, we screened the 3'UTRs of known Hh signaling component mRNAs for the Quaking response element and found the transcription factor Gli2a, a known regulator of muscle fate development. Using destabilized GFP as a reporter, we show that the gli2a mRNA 3'UTR is a functional QkA target. Consistent with this notion, the loss of QkA function rescued slow muscle fibers in yot mutant embryos, which express a dominant-negative Gli2a isoform. Thus, our results reveal a new mechanism to ensure muscle cell fate diversity by fine-tuning of the Hh signaling pathway via RNA-binding proteins.

  17. Fine-Tuning the Activity of Metal-Organic Framework-Supported Cobalt Catalysts for the Oxidative Dehydrogenation of Propane.

    PubMed

    Li, Zhanyong; Peters, Aaron W; Platero-Prats, Ana E; Liu, Jian; Kung, Chung-Wei; Noh, Hyunho; DeStefano, Matthew R; Schweitzer, Neil M; Chapman, Karena W; Hupp, Joseph T; Farha, Omar K

    2017-10-04

    Few-atom cobalt-oxide clusters, when dispersed on a Zr-based metal-organic framework (MOF) NU-1000, have been shown to be active for the oxidative dehydrogenation (ODH) of propane at low temperatures (< 230 °C), affording a selective and stable propene production catalyst. In our current work, a series of promoter ions with varying Lewis acidity, including Ni(II), Zn(II), Al(III), Ti(IV) and Mo(VI), are anchored as metal-oxide,hydroxide clusters to NU-1000 followed by Co(II) ion deposition, yielding a series of NU-1000-supported bimetallic-oxo,hydroxo,aqua clusters. Using difference envelope density (DED) analyses, the spatial locations of the promoter ions and catalytic cobalt ions are determined. For all samples the promoter ions are sited between pairs of Zr6 nodes along the MOF c axis whereas the location of the cobalt ions varies with the promoter ions. These NU-1000-supported bimetallic-oxide clusters are active for propane ODH after thermal activation under O2 to open a cobalt coordination site and to oxidize Co(II) to Co(III), as evidenced by operando X-ray absorption spectroscopy at the Co K-edge. In accord with the decreasing Lewis acidity of the promoter ion, catalytic activity increases in the order: Mo(VI)fine-tune the structure-dependent activity of MOF-supported heterogeneous catalysts. Coupled with mechanistic studies-computational or experimental-this ability may translate into informed prediction of improved catalysts for propane ODH and other chemical reactions.

  18. Fine-Tuning Motile Cilia and Flagella: Evolution of the Dynein Motor Proteins from Plants to Humans at High Resolution

    PubMed Central

    Kollmar, Martin

    2016-01-01

    The flagellum is a key innovation linked to eukaryogenesis. It provides motility by regulated cycles of bending and bend propagation, which are thought to be controlled by a complex arrangement of seven distinct dyneins in repeated patterns of outer- (OAD) and inner-arm dynein (IAD) complexes. Electron tomography showed high similarity of this axonemal repeat pattern across ciliates, algae, and animals, but the diversity of dynein sequences across the eukaryotes has not yet comprehensively been resolved and correlated with structural data. To shed light on the evolution of the axoneme I performed an exhaustive analysis of dyneins using the available sequenced genome data. Evidence from motor domain phylogeny allowed expanding the current set of nine dynein subtypes by eight additional isoforms with, however, restricted taxonomic distributions. I confirmed the presence of the nine dyneins in all eukaryotic super-groups indicating their origin predating the last eukaryotic common ancestor. The comparison of the N-terminal tail domains revealed a most likely axonemal dynein origin of the new classes, a group of chimeric dyneins in plants/algae and Stramenopiles, and the unique domain architecture and origin of the outermost OADs present in green algae and ciliates but not animals. The correlation of sequence and structural data suggests the single-headed class-8 and class-9 dyneins to localize to the distal end of the axonemal repeat and the class-7 dyneins filling the region up to the proximal heterodimeric IAD. Tracing dynein gene duplications across the eukaryotes indicated ongoing diversification and fine-tuning of flagellar functions in extant taxa and species. PMID:27880711

  19. Tomato Yield Heterosis Is Triggered by a Dosage Sensitivity of the Florigen Pathway That Fine-Tunes Shoot Architecture

    PubMed Central

    Jiang, Ke; Liberatore, Katie L.; Park, Soon Ju; Alvarez, John P.; Lippman, Zachary B.

    2013-01-01

    The superiority of hybrids has long been exploited in agriculture, and although many models explaining “heterosis” have been put forth, direct empirical support is limited. Particularly elusive have been cases of heterozygosity for single gene mutations causing heterosis under a genetic model known as overdominance. In tomato (Solanum lycopersicum), plants carrying mutations in SINGLE FLOWER TRUSS (SFT) encoding the flowering hormone florigen are severely delayed in flowering, become extremely large, and produce few flowers and fruits, but when heterozygous, yields are dramatically increased. Curiously, this overdominance is evident only in the background of “determinate” plants, in which the continuous production of side shoots and inflorescences gradually halts due to a defect in the flowering repressor SELF PRUNING (SP). How sp facilitates sft overdominance is unclear, but is thought to relate to the opposing functions these genes have on flowering time and shoot architecture. We show that sft mutant heterozygosity (sft/+) causes weak semi-dominant delays in flowering of both primary and side shoots. Using transcriptome sequencing of shoot meristems, we demonstrate that this delay begins before seedling meristems become reproductive, followed by delays in subsequent side shoot meristems that, in turn, postpone the arrest of shoot and inflorescence production. Reducing SFT levels in sp plants by artificial microRNAs recapitulates the dose-dependent modification of shoot and inflorescence production of sft/+ heterozygotes, confirming that fine-tuning levels of functional SFT transcripts provides a foundation for higher yields. Finally, we show that although flowering delays by florigen mutant heterozygosity are conserved in Arabidopsis, increased yield is not, likely because cyclical flowering is absent. We suggest sft heterozygosity triggers a yield improvement by optimizing plant architecture via its dosage response in the florigen pathway. Exploiting

  20. Fine-tune optical absorption and light emitting behavior of the CdS/PVA hybridized film nanocomposite

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Heiba, Z. K.; Mohamed, Mohamed Bakr; Imam, N. G.

    2017-05-01

    CdS nanoparticles (NPs) nucleated at different temperatures were composited with PVA to control and fine-tune optical absorption and emission of the nano-hybrid composite by varying the sizes of the CdS NPs which in turn depends on the nucleation temperature. The implanting of CdS NPs into PVA matrix was confirmed by XRD hand in hand with absorption and photoluminescence spectroscopic techniques. UV/VIS absorption spectra confirm the formation of hybridized film CdS/PVA nanocomposite with refractive index in the range of 2-4. UV/VIS measurements were also used in calculating different optical and dielectric parameters such as refractive index, extinction coefficient, dielectric constants, and optical conductivity. The optical parameters varied with the incorporation of CdS NPs within PVA matrix; accordingly, the optical constants of the nanocomposite films could be controlled by size of CdS content. Tauc's relation was used to determine the optical band gap and to determine the type of electronic transition. It is found that the direct allowed transition is more probable in CdS/PVA nanocomposite film of direct band gap around 3.8 eV. Blue and green light emissions from CdS/PVA nanocomposite film have been observed. Further, the PL studies indicated the emission peak observed at UV band represents band to band transition, while the blue and green emissions could be assigned to the optical transition of the first excitonic state of the CdS NPs and emission from interstitial sulfur respectively. The blue shift in the PL spectra was parallel to the shift observed in UV/VIS spectra. Because of its excellent fluorescence and highly transparent performance, the composite film of CdS nucleated at 200 °C was found to be suitable for bio-related applications such as bio-labeling, bio-imaging, drug delivery, and LEDs as well as a window layer in solar cell.

  1. Energy Ordering of Molecular Orbitals

    PubMed Central

    2016-01-01

    Orbitals are invaluable in providing a model of bonding in molecules or between molecules and surfaces. Most present-day methods in computational chemistry begin by calculating the molecular orbitals of the system. To what extent have these mathematical objects analogues in the real world? To shed light on this intriguing question, we employ a photoemission tomography study on monolayers of 3,4,9,10-perylene-tetracarboxylic acid dianhydride (PTCDA) grown on three Ag surfaces. The characteristic photoelectron angular distribution enables us to assign individual molecular orbitals to the emission features. When comparing the resulting energy positions to density functional calculations, we observe deviations in the energy ordering. By performing complete active space calculations (CASSCF), we can explain the experimentally observed orbital ordering, suggesting the importance of static electron correlation beyond a (semi)local approximation. On the other hand, our results also show reality and robustness of the orbital concept, thereby making molecular orbitals accessible to experimental observations. PMID:27935313

  2. Listeria monocytogenes 10403S Arginine Repressor ArgR Finely Tunes Arginine Metabolism Regulation under Acidic Conditions

    PubMed Central

    Cheng, Changyong; Dong, Zhimei; Han, Xiao; Sun, Jing; Wang, Hang; Jiang, Li; Yang, Yongchun; Ma, Tiantian; Chen, Zhongwei; Yu, Jing; Fang, Weihuan; Song, Houhui

    2017-01-01

    Listeria monocytogenes is able to colonize human and animal intestinal tracts and to subsequently cross the intestinal barrier, causing systemic infection. For successful establishment of infection, L. monocytogenes must survive the low pH environment of the stomach. L. monocytogenes encodes a functional ArgR, a transcriptional regulator belonging to the ArgR/AhrC arginine repressor family. We aimed at clarifying the specific functions of ArgR in arginine metabolism regulation, and more importantly, in acid tolerance of L. monocytogenes. We showed that ArgR in the presence of 10 mM arginine represses transcription and expression of the argGH and argCJBDF operons, indicating that L. monocytogenes ArgR plays the classical role of ArgR/AhrC family proteins in feedback inhibition of the arginine biosynthetic pathway. Notably, transcription and expression of arcA (encoding arginine deiminase) and sigB (encoding an alternative sigma factor B) were also markedly repressed by ArgR when bacteria were exposed to pH 5.5 in the absence of arginine. However, addition of arginine enabled ArgR to derepress the transcription and expression of these two genes. Electrophoretic mobility shift assays showed that ArgR binds to the putative ARG boxes in the promoter regions of argC, argG, arcA, and sigB. Reporter gene analysis with gfp under control of the argG promoter demonstrated that ArgR was able to activate the argG promoter. Unexpectedly, deletion of argR significantly increased bacterial survival in BHI medium adjusted to pH 3.5 with lactic acid. We conclude that this phenomenon is due to activation of arcA and sigB. Collectively, our results show that L. monocytogenes ArgR finely tunes arginine metabolism through negative transcriptional regulation of the arginine biosynthetic operons and of the catabolic arcA gene in an arginine-independent manner during lactic acid-induced acid stress. ArgR also appears to activate catabolism as well as sigB transcription by anti

  3. Improving putrescine production by Corynebacterium glutamicum by fine-tuning ornithine transcarbamoylase activity using a plasmid addiction system.

    PubMed

    Schneider, Jens; Eberhardt, Dorit; Wendisch, Volker F

    2012-07-01

    Corynebacterium glutamicum shows a great potential for the production of the polyamide monomer putrescine (1,4-diaminobutane). Previously, we constructed the putrescine-producing strain PUT1 by deletion of argF, the gene for ornithine transcarbamoylase (OTC), and argR, encoding the L-arginine repressor, combined with heterologous expression of the Escherichia coli gene for L-ornithine decarboxylase SpeC. As a consequence of argF deletion, this strain requires supplementation of L-arginine and shows growth-decoupled putrescine production. To avoid costly supplementation with L-arginine and the strong feedback inhibition of the key enzyme N-acetylglutamate kinase (ArgB) by L-arginine, a plasmid addiction system for low-level argF expression was developed. By fine-tuning argF expression through modifications of the promoter, the translational start codon and/or the ribosome binding site, high productivity and titer could be obtained. OTC activity varied almost thousandfold between 960 and 1 mU mg⁻¹ resulting in putrescine yields on glucose from less than 0.001 up to 0.26 g g⁻¹, the highest yield in bacteria reported to date. The most promising strain, designated PUT21, was characterized comprehensively. PUT21 strain grew with a rate of 0.19 h⁻¹ in mineral salt medium without the need for L-arginine supplementation and produced putrescine with a yield of 0.16 g g⁻¹ glucose at a volumetric productivity of 0.57 g L⁻¹ h⁻¹ and a specific productivity of 0.042 g g⁻¹ h⁻¹. The carbon balance suggested that no major unidentified by-product was produced. Compared to the first-generation strain PUT1, the putrescine yield observed with PUT21 was increased by 60%. In fed-batch cultivation with C. glutamicum PUT21, a putrescine titer of 19 g L⁻¹ at a volumetric productivity of 0.55 g L⁻¹ h⁻¹ and a yield of 0.16 g g⁻¹ glucose could be achieved. Moreover, while plasmid segregation of the initial strain required antibiotic selection

  4. Fine Tuning of Redox Networks on Multiheme Cytochromes from Geobacter sulfurreducens Drives Physiological Electron/Proton Energy Transduction

    PubMed Central

    Morgado, Leonor; Dantas, Joana M.; Bruix, Marta; Londer, Yuri Y.; Salgueiro, Carlos A.

    2012-01-01

    The bacterium Geobacter sulfurreducens (Gs) can grow in the presence of extracellular terminal acceptors, a property that is currently explored to harvest electricity from aquatic sediments and waste organic matter into microbial fuel cells. A family composed of five triheme cytochromes (PpcA-E) was identified in Gs. These cytochromes play a crucial role by bridging the electron transfer from oxidation of cytoplasmic donors to the cell exterior and assisting the reduction of extracellular terminal acceptors. The detailed thermodynamic characterization of such proteins showed that PpcA and PpcD have an important redox-Bohr effect that might implicate these proteins in the e−/H+ coupling mechanisms to sustain cellular growth. The physiological relevance of the redox-Bohr effect in these proteins was studied by determining the fractional contribution of each individual redox-microstate at different pH values. For both proteins, oxidation progresses from a particular protonated microstate to a particular deprotonated one, over specific pH ranges. The preferred e−/H+ transfer pathway established by the selected microstates indicates that both proteins are functionally designed to couple e−/H+ transfer at the physiological pH range for cellular growth. PMID:22899897

  5. Experimental Profiling of a Non-truncated Focused Gaussian Beam and Fine-tuning of the Quadratic Phase in the Fresnel Gaussian Shape Invariant

    SciTech Connect

    S., Juan Manuel Franco; Cywiak, Moises; Cywiak, David; Mourad, Idir

    2015-06-24

    A homodyne profiler is used for recording the intensity distribution of focused non-truncated Gaussian beams. The spatial distributions are obtained at planes in the vicinity of the back-focal plane of a focusing lens placed at different distances from a He–Ne laser beam with a Gaussian intensity profile. Comparisons of the experimental data with those obtained from the analytical equations for an ideal focusing lens allow us to propose formulae to fine-tune the quadratic term in the Fresnel Gaussian shape invariant at each interface of the propagated field. Furthermore, we give analytical expressions to calculate adequately the propagation of the field through an optical system.

  6. Fine tuning of tissues' viscosity and surface tension through contractility suggests a new role for α-catenin.

    PubMed

    Stirbat, Tomita Vasilica; Mgharbel, Abbas; Bodennec, Selena; Ferri, Karine; Mertani, Hichem C; Rieu, Jean-Paul; Delanoë-Ayari, Hélène

    2013-01-01

    What governs tissue organization and movement? If molecular and genetic approaches are able to give some answers on these issues, more and more works are now giving a real importance to mechanics as a key component eventually triggering further signaling events. We chose embryonic cell aggregates as model systems for tissue organization and movement in order to investigate the origin of some mechanical constraints arising from cells organization. Steinberg et al. proposed a long time ago an analogy between liquids and tissues and showed that indeed tissues possess a measurable tissue surface tension and viscosity. We question here the molecular origin of these parameters and give a quantitative measurement of adhesion versus contractility in the framework of the differential interfacial tension hypothesis. Accompanying surface tension measurements by angle measurements (at vertexes of cell-cell contacts) at the cell/medium interface, we are able to extract the full parameters of this model: cortical tensions and adhesion energy. We show that a tunable surface tension and viscosity can be achieved easily through the control of cell-cell contractility compared to cell-medium one. Moreover we show that α-catenin is crucial for this regulation to occur: these molecules appear as a catalyser for the remodeling of the actin cytoskeleton underneath cell-cell contact, enabling a differential contractility between the cell-medium and cell-cell interface to take place.

  7. Enhancement of magnetic domain topologies in Co/Pt thin films by fine tuning the magnetic field path throughout the hysteresis loop

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Westover, Andrew S.; Chesnel, Karine; Hatch, Kelsey; Salter, Philip; Hellwig, Olav

    2016-02-01

    We have studied the influence of magnetic history on the topology of perpendicular magnetic domains in a thin ferromagnetic film made of [Co(8 Å)/Pt(7 Å)]50 multilayers. More specifically, we have followed the morphological changes in the domain pattern when applying a magnetic field perpendicular to the layer, throughout minor and major magnetization loops, and in the resulting remanent state. We carried out this study by using MFM microscopy with an in-situ magnetic field. We find that the morphology of the magnetic domain pattern is greatly influenced by the magnetic history of the material and that some features, such as the degree of bubbliness (i.e., the extent of bubble domain formation) and density of isolated domains can be enhanced by fine tuning the magnetic field path within the major hysteresis loop towards different remanent states. In particular, we see how hysteresis is correlated to irreversible changes in the domain morphology. More interestingly, we find that the magnetic domain morphology at remanence can be changed from an interconnected labyrinthine stripe state to a state of many separated bubble domains by fine tuning the magnitude of the field previously applied to the material. These results agree well with other findings, such as the magnetic reversal behavior and magnetic memory effects in Co/Pt multilayers, and provide opportunities for potential technological applications.

  8. Inorganic and Organometallic Molecular Wires for Single-Molecule Devices.

    PubMed

    Tanaka, Yuya; Kiguchi, Manabu; Akita, Munetaka

    2017-04-06

    Recent developments of single-molecule conductance measurements allow us to understand fundamental conducting properties of molecular wires. While a wide variety of organic molecular wires have been studied so far, inorganic and organometallic molecular wires have received much less attention. However, molecular wires with transition-metal atoms show interesting features and functions distinct from those of organic wires. These properties originate mainly from metal-ligand dπ-pπ interactions and metal-metal d-d interactions. Thanks to the rich combination of metal atoms and supporting ligands, frontier orbital energies of the molecular wires can be finely tuned to lead to highly conducting molecular wires. Moreover, the unique electronic structures of metal complexes are susceptible to subtle environmental changes, leading to potential functional molecular devices. This article reviews recent advances in the single-molecule conductance study of inorganic and organometallic molecular wires. © 2017 Wiley-VCH Verlag GmbH & Co. KGaA, Weinheim.

  9. Fine Tuning of the Anisotropy Barrier by Ligand Substitution Observed in Linear {Dy2 Ni2 } Clusters.

    PubMed

    Li, Yan; Shang, Qiu; Zhang, Yi-Quan; Yang, En-Cui; Zhao, Xiao-Jun

    2016-12-23

    Three new heterometallic single-molecule magnets (SMMs), [Dy2 Ni2 (bipy)2 (RC6 H4 COO)10 ] [bipy=2,2'-bipyridine, R=H (1), CH3 (2), and NO2 (3)], are synthesized solvothermally with different 3-substituted benzoate ligands (RC6 H4 COO(-) ), and are characterized both structurally and magnetically. Structural analyses reveal that the three entities are structurally analogous, exhibiting an approximately linear {Dy2 Ni2 } core bridged by ten carboxylate moieties from the RC6 H4 COO(-) ligands. A noncoordinating substituent group attached on the phenyl ring results in minor geometry distortions of 1-3, but causes a significant decrease in the Mulliken atomic charge on the axially shortest O donor through inductive and/or conjugative effects. Weak intramolecular ferromagnetic (for Dy(III) ⋅⋅⋅Dy(III) ) and antiferromagnetic (for Dy(III) ⋅⋅⋅Ni(II) ) interactions with slightly different coupling strengths are observed in 1-3 at low temperatures, and the effective anisotropy barriers to block the magnetization reversal are 39.9, 25.9, and 2.8 cm(-1) , respectively, under zero direct-current field. Ab initio calculations reveal that ligand substitution by the noncoordinating electron-withdrawing/electron-donating group can give rise to good modulation of the energy gap between the two lowest Kramers doublets, as well as the orientation of the local easy axis of the Dy(III) ion magnetization. The directions of the local easy axis of the Dy(III) ion can further influence the dipole spin-spin interaction and the molecular anisotropy of the entire molecule, which, together with the energy separation between the ground and first excited ground states, become the significant factors determining the effective anisotropy barrier heights of 1-3. These important results demonstrate that the charge distributions of the ligand-field environments play essential roles in SMM performance, which should be considered seriously and utilized efficiently during the rational

  10. Applying high-resolution sequence stratigraphic tools to the Texas continental margin to fine-tune conventional sequence stratigraphic models and improve reservoir prediction

    SciTech Connect

    Anderson, J.A.; Banfield, L.A.; Eckles, B.J.

    1996-12-31

    A regional sequence stratigraphic study of the Texas continental margin resulted in an improved understanding of Pleistocene-Holocene eustatic sea level fluctuations and their influence on depositional environments associated with several distinct systems: the Colorado/Brazos system, the Texas interfluve region, and the Rio Grande system. The dataset consists of approximately 7500 kilometers of high-resolution seismic profiloes, 200 borehole descriptions, and 12 sediment cores. The study involved analysis of three independent variables to better constrain Pleistocene-Holocene sea level history: coastal onlap derived from high-resolution seismic profiles; oxygen isotope data determined from selected sediment cores; and paleoenvironmental data developed from high-resolution micropaleontologic analyses. Combined lithologic data and seismic facies analysis is used to map the distribution of major depositional systems on the shelf during one complete glacial eustatic cycle. Our study provided anopportunity to fine tune conventional stratigraphic models with regard to the distribution of potential reservoirs relative to regionally mappable stratigraphic surfaces.

  11. Applying high-resolution sequence stratigraphic tools to the Texas continental margin to fine-tune conventional sequence stratigraphic models and improve reservoir prediction

    SciTech Connect

    Anderson, J.A.; Banfield, L.A.; Eckles, B.J. )

    1996-01-01

    A regional sequence stratigraphic study of the Texas continental margin resulted in an improved understanding of Pleistocene-Holocene eustatic sea level fluctuations and their influence on depositional environments associated with several distinct systems: the Colorado/Brazos system, the Texas interfluve region, and the Rio Grande system. The dataset consists of approximately 7500 kilometers of high-resolution seismic profiloes, 200 borehole descriptions, and 12 sediment cores. The study involved analysis of three independent variables to better constrain Pleistocene-Holocene sea level history: coastal onlap derived from high-resolution seismic profiles; oxygen isotope data determined from selected sediment cores; and paleoenvironmental data developed from high-resolution micropaleontologic analyses. Combined lithologic data and seismic facies analysis is used to map the distribution of major depositional systems on the shelf during one complete glacial eustatic cycle. Our study provided anopportunity to fine tune conventional stratigraphic models with regard to the distribution of potential reservoirs relative to regionally mappable stratigraphic surfaces.

  12. Fine-Tuning of Polymeric Resins and Their Interfaces with Amorphous Calcium Phosphate. A Strategy for Designing Effective Remineralizing Dental Composites.

    PubMed

    Antonucci, Joseph M; Skrtic, Drago

    2010-09-01

    For over a decade our group has been designing, preparing and evaluating bioactive, remineralizing composites based on amorphous calcium phosphate (ACP) fillers embedded in polymerized methacrylate resin matrices. In these studies a major focus has been on exploring structure-property relationships of the matrix phase of these composites on their anti-cariogenic potential. The main challenges were to gain a better understanding of polymer matrix/filler interfacial properties through controlling the surface properties of the fillers or through fine-tuning of the resin matrix. In this work, we describe the effect of chemical structure and composition of the resin matrices on some of the critical physicochemical properties of the copolymers and their ACP composites. Such structure-property studies are essential in formulating clinically effective products, and this knowledge base is likely to have strong impact on the future design of therapeutic materials, appropriate for mineral restoration in defective tooth structures.

  13. Fine-Tuning of Polymeric Resins and Their Interfaces with Amorphous Calcium Phosphate. A Strategy for Designing Effective Remineralizing Dental Composites

    PubMed Central

    Antonucci, Joseph M.; Skrtic, Drago

    2011-01-01

    For over a decade our group has been designing, preparing and evaluating bioactive, remineralizing composites based on amorphous calcium phosphate (ACP) fillers embedded in polymerized methacrylate resin matrices. In these studies a major focus has been on exploring structure-property relationships of the matrix phase of these composites on their anti-cariogenic potential. The main challenges were to gain a better understanding of polymer matrix/filler interfacial properties through controlling the surface properties of the fillers or through fine-tuning of the resin matrix. In this work, we describe the effect of chemical structure and composition of the resin matrices on some of the critical physicochemical properties of the copolymers and their ACP composites. Such structure-property studies are essential in formulating clinically effective products, and this knowledge base is likely to have strong impact on the future design of therapeutic materials, appropriate for mineral restoration in defective tooth structures. PMID:21283507

  14. Metabolic control of respiratory levels in coenzyme Q biosynthesis-deficient Escherichia coli strains leading to fine-tune aerobic lactate fermentation.

    PubMed

    Wu, Hui; Bennett, George N; San, Ka-Yiu

    2015-08-01

    A novel strategy to finely control the electron transfer chain (ETC) activity of Escherichia coli was established. In this study, the fine-tuning of the ubiquinone biosynthesis pathway was applied to further controlling ETC function in coenzyme Q8 biosynthesis-deficient E. coli strains, HW108 and HW109, which contain mutations in ubiE and ubiG, respectively. A competing pathway on the intermediate substrates of the Q8 synthesis pathway, catalyzed by diphosphate:4-hydroxybenzoate geranyltransferase (PGT-1) of Lithospermum erythrorhizon, was introduced into these mutant strains. A nearly theoretical yield of lactate production can be achieved under fully aerobic conditions via an in vivo, genetically fine-tunable means to further control the activity of the ETC of the Q8 biosynthesis-deficient E. coli strains.

  15. SpxA1 and SpxA2 Act Coordinately To Fine-Tune Stress Responses and Virulence in Streptococcus pyogenes

    PubMed Central

    Port, Gary C.; Cusumano, Zachary T.; Tumminello, Paul R.

    2017-01-01

    ABSTRACT SpxA is a unique transcriptional regulator highly conserved among members of the phylum Firmicutes that binds RNA polymerase and can act as an antiactivator. Why some Firmicutes members have two highly similar SpxA paralogs is not understood. Here, we show that the SpxA paralogs of the pathogen Streptococcus pyogenes, SpxA1 and SpxA2, act coordinately to regulate virulence by fine-tuning toxin expression and stress resistance. Construction and analysis of mutants revealed that SpxA1− mutants were defective for growth under aerobic conditions, while SpxA2− mutants had severely attenuated responses to multiple stresses, including thermal and oxidative stresses. SpxA1− mutants had enhanced resistance to the cationic antimicrobial molecule polymyxin B, while SpxA2− mutants were more sensitive. In a murine model of soft tissue infection, a SpxA1− mutant was highly attenuated. In contrast, the highly stress-sensitive SpxA2− mutant was hypervirulent, exhibiting more extensive tissue damage and a greater bacterial burden than the wild-type strain. SpxA1− attenuation was associated with reduced expression of several toxins, including the SpeB cysteine protease. In contrast, SpxA2− hypervirulence correlated with toxin overexpression and could be suppressed to wild-type levels by deletion of speB. These data show that SpxA1 and SpxA2 have opposing roles in virulence and stress resistance, suggesting that they act coordinately to fine-tune toxin expression in response to stress. SpxA2− hypervirulence also shows that stress resistance is not always essential for S. pyogenes pathogenesis in soft tissue. PMID:28351920

  16. Fine Tuning of Nanocrystal and Pore Sizes of TiO2 Submicrospheres toward High Performance Dye-Sensitized Solar Cells.

    PubMed

    Li, Zhao-Qian; Ding, Yong; Mo, Li-E; Hu, Lin-Hua; Wu, Ji-Huai; Dai, Song-Yuan

    2015-10-14

    In general, the properties and performance of mesoporous TiO2 are greatly dependent on its crystal size, crystallinity, porosity, surface area, and morphology; in this regard, design and fine-tuning the crystal and pore sizes of the TiO2 submicrospheres and investigating the effect of these factors on the properties and photoelectric performance of dye-sensitized solar cells (DSSCs) is essential. In this work, uniform TiO2 submicrospheres were synthesized by a two-step procedure containing hydrolysis and solvothermal process. The crystal and pore sizes of the TiO2 submicrospheres were fine-tuned and controlled in a narrow range by adjusting the quantity of NH4OH during the solvothermal process. The effect of crystal and pore size of TiO2 submicrosphere on the performance of the DSSCs and their properties including dye-loading capacity, light scattering effect, power conversion efficiency (PCE), incident photon-to-electron conversion efficiencies (IPCEs), and electron recombination were compared and analyzed. The results show that increasing pore size plays a more significant role in improving the dye-loading capacity and PCE than increasing surface area, and an overall PCE value of 8.62% was obtained for the device with a 7.0 μm film thickness based on the TiO2 submicrospheres treated with 0.6 mL of NH4OH. Finally, the best TiO2 submicrosphere based photoanode film was optimized by TiCl4 treatment, and increasing film thickness and a remarkable PCE up to 11.11% were achieved.

  17. Mean excitation energies for molecular ions

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Jensen, Phillip W. K.; Sauer, Stephan P. A.; Oddershede, Jens; Sabin, John R.

    2017-03-01

    The essential material constant that determines the bulk of the stopping power of high energy projectiles, the mean excitation energy, is calculated for a range of smaller molecular ions using the RPA method. It is demonstrated that the mean excitation energy of both molecules and atoms increase with ionic charge. However, while the mean excitation energies of atoms also increase with atomic number, the opposite is the case for mean excitation energies for molecules and molecular ions. The origin of these effects is explained by considering the spectral representation of the excited state contributing to the mean excitation energy.

  18. Conference on Children and Television: Worldwide Fine Tuning for Children, University of Miami, Parts I and II. Transcript of the Panel Discussion on the Television Series "Big Blue Marble"

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Brown, Les; And Others

    This paper describes the proceedings of a conference on children and television, "Worldwide Fine Tuning for Children," held on 11 February 1977 by the University of Miami Department of Communications. The purpose of the conference was to survey the world of television as experienced by children and to explore how communications experts,…

  19. Conference on Children and Television: Worldwide Fine Tuning for Children, University of Miami, Parts I and II. Transcript of the Panel Discussion on the Television Series "Big Blue Marble"

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Brown, Les; And Others

    This paper describes the proceedings of a conference on children and television, "Worldwide Fine Tuning for Children," held on 11 February 1977 by the University of Miami Department of Communications. The purpose of the conference was to survey the world of television as experienced by children and to explore how communications experts,…

  20. Improving Electrocatalysts for O2 Reduction by Fine-Tuning the Pt-Support Interaction: Pt Monolayer on the Surfaces of a Pd3Fe(111) Single-Crystal Alloy

    SciTech Connect

    Zhou, W.P.; Yang, X.; Vukmirovic, M.B.; Koel, B.E.; Jiao, J.; Peng, G.; Mavrikakis, M.; Adzic, R.R.

    2009-09-09

    We improved the effectiveness of Pt monolayer electrocatalysts for the oxygen-reduction reaction (ORR) using a novel approach to fine-tuning the Pt monolayer interaction with its support, exemplified by an annealed Pd{sub 3}Fe(111) single-crystal alloy support having a segregated Pd layer. Low-energy ion scattering and low-energy electron diffraction studies revealed that a segregated Pd layer, with the same structure as Pd (111), is formed on the surface of high-temperature-annealed Pd{sub 3}Fe(111). This Pd layer is considerably more active than Pd(111); its ORR kinetics is comparable to that of a Pt(111) surface. The enhanced catalytic activity of the segregated Pd layer compared to that of bulk Pd apparently reflects the modification of Pd surface's electronic properties by underlying Fe. The Pd{sub 3}Fe(111) suffers a large loss in ORR activity when the subsurface Fe is depleted by potential cycling (i.e., repeated excursions to high potentials in acid solutions). The Pd{sub 3}Fe(111) surface is an excellent substrate for a Pt monolayer ORR catalyst, as verified by its enhanced ORR kinetics on PT{sub ML}/Pd/Pd{sub 3}Fe(111). Our density functional theory studies suggest that the observed enhancement of ORR activity originates mainly from the destabilization of OH binding and the decreased Pt-OH coverage on the Pt/Pd/Pd{sub 3}Fe(111) surface. The activity of Pt{sub ML}/Pd(111) and Pt(111) is limited by OH removal, whereas the activity of Pt{sub ML}/Pd/Pd{sub 3}Fe(111) is limited by the O-O bond scission, which places these two surfaces on the two sides of the volcano plot.

  1. Improving Electrocatalysts for O2 Reduction by Fine-Tuning the Pt-Support Interaction: Pt Monolayer on the Surfaces of a Pd3Fe(111) Single-Crystal Alloy

    SciTech Connect

    Zhou, Wei-Ping; Yang, Xiaofang; Vukmirovic, Miomir B.; Koel, Bruce E.; Jiao, Jiao; Peng, Guowen; Mavrikakis, Manos; Adzic, Radoslav R.

    2009-09-09

    We improved the effectiveness of Pt monolayer electrocatalysts for the oxygen-reduction reaction (ORR) using a novel approach to fine-tuning the Pt monolayer interaction with its support, exemplified by an annealed Pd3Fe(111) single-crystal alloy support having a segregated Pd layer. Low-energy ion scattering and low-energy electron diffraction studies revealed that a segregated Pd layer, with the same structure as Pd (111), is formed on the surface of high-temperature-annealed Pd3Fe(111). This Pd layer is considerably more active than Pd(111); its ORR kinetics is comparable to that of a Pt(111) surface. The enhanced catalytic activity of the segregated Pd layer compared to that of bulk Pd apparently reflects the modification of Pd surface’s electronic properties by underlying Fe. The Pd3Fe(111) suffers a large loss in ORR activity when the subsurface Fe is depleted by potential cycling (i.e., repeated excursions to high potentials in acid solutions). The Pd3Fe(111) surface is an excellent substrate for a Pt monolayer ORR catalyst, as verified by its enhanced ORR kinetics on PTML/Pd/Pd3Fe(111). Our density functional theory studies suggest that the observed enhancement of ORR activity originates mainly from the destabilization of OH binding and the decreased Pt-OH coverage on the Pt/Pd/Pd3Fe(111) surface. The activity of PtML/Pd(111) and Pt(111) is limited by OH removal, whereas the activity of PtML/Pd/Pd3Fe(111) is limited by the O-O bond scission, which places these two surfaces on the two sides of the volcano plot.

  2. Manipulation of peptide conformations by fine-tuning of the environment and/or the primary sequence.

    PubMed

    Li, S C; Kim, P K; Deber, C M

    1995-06-01

    The widely observed phenomenon that peptides are capable of adopting multiple conformations in different environments suggests that secondary structure formation in a peptide segment is a process involving not only the peptide itself but also the surrounding solvent media. The influence of the primary sequence and the molecular environment on peptide conformations are now investigated using synthetic peptides of amino acid sequence H2N-(Ser-Lys)2-Ala-X-Gly-Ala-X-Gly-Trp-Ala-X-Gly-(Lys-Ser)3-OH, where X = Ile or Val. These two peptides, namely 3I (X = Ile) and 3V (X = Val), are found to lack defined secondary structure in aqueous buffer. However, discrete conformational states, e.g., alpha-helices and beta-sheets, are readily generated and interconverted for both peptides when the buffer is modulated with the addition of methanol, sodium dodecyl sulfate (SDS) micelles, or phospholipid vesicles. The role of the primary sequence in affecting peptide conformations is manifested in that peptides 3I and 3V, which differ respectively in their content of beta-branched Ile or Val residues, differ in their secondary structures at monomeric concentrations in 2 mM SDS and in mixed lipid vesicles of phosphatidic acid and phosphatidylcholine. The overall results suggest that peptide segments can be conformationally flexible entities poised to react to minor modulation in either the molecular environment or the primary sequence, a circumstance that may be relevant to protein functioning and folding.

  3. Multipotent Genetic Suppression of Retrotransposon-Induced Mutations by Nxf1 through Fine-Tuning of Alternative Splicing

    PubMed Central

    Concepcion, Dorothy; Flores-García, Lisbeth; Hamilton, Bruce A.

    2009-01-01

    Cellular gene expression machinery has coevolved with molecular parasites, such as viruses and transposons, which rely on host cells for their expression and reproduction. We previously reported that a wild-derived allele of mouse Nxf1 (Tap), a key component of the host mRNA nuclear export machinery, suppresses two endogenous retrovirus-induced mutations and shows suggestive evidence of positive selection. Here we show that Nxf1CAST suppresses a specific and frequent class of intracisternal A particle (IAP)-induced mutations, including Ap3d1mh2J, a model for Hermansky-Pudlak syndrome, and Atcayhes, an orthologous gene model for Cayman ataxia, among others. The molecular phenotype of suppression includes ∼two-fold increase in the level of correctly-spliced mRNA and a decrease in mutant-specific, alternatively-processed RNA accumulating from the inserted allele. Insertional mutations involving ETn and LINE elements are not suppressed, demonstrating a high degree of specificity to this suppression mechanism. These results implicate Nxf1 in some instances of pre-mRNA processing, demonstrate the useful range of Nxf1CAST alleles for manipulating existing mouse models of disease, and specifically imply a low functional threshold for therapeutic benefit in Cayman ataxia. PMID:19436707

  4. A new direction in dye-sensitized solar cells redox mediator development: in situ fine-tuning of the cobalt(II)/(III) redox potential through Lewis base interactions.

    PubMed

    Kashif, Muhammad K; Axelson, Jordan C; Duffy, Noel W; Forsyth, Craig M; Chang, Christopher J; Long, Jeffrey R; Spiccia, Leone; Bach, Udo

    2012-10-10

    Dye-sensitized solar cells (DSCs) are an attractive renewable energy technology currently under intense investigation. In recent years, one area of major interest has been the exploration of alternatives to the classical iodide/triiodide redox shuttle, with particular attention focused on cobalt complexes with the general formula [Co(L)(n)](2+/3+). We introduce a new approach to designing redox mediators that involves the application of [Co(PY5Me(2))(MeCN)](2+/3+) complexes, where PY5Me(2) is the pentadentate ligand, 2,6-bis(1,1-bis(2-pyridyl)ethyl)pyridine. It is shown, by X-ray crystallography, that the axial acetonitrile (MeCN) ligand can be replaced by more strongly coordinating Lewis bases (B) to give complexes with the general formula [Co(PY5Me(2))(B)](2+/3+), where B = 4-tert-butylpyridine (tBP) or N-methylbenzimidazole (NMBI). These commonly applied DSC electrolyte components are used for the first time to fine-tune the potential of the redox couple to the requirements of the dye through coordinative interactions with the Co(II/III) centers. Application of electrolytes based on the [Co(PY5Me(2))(NMBI)](2+/3+) complex in combination with a commercially available organic sensitizer has enabled us to attain DSC efficiencies of 8.4% and 9.2% at a simulated light intensity of 100% sun (1000 W m(-2) AM1.5 G) and at 10% sun, respectively, higher than analogous devices applying the [Co(bpy)(3)](2+/3+) redox couple, and an open circuit voltage (V(oc)) of almost 1.0 V at 100% sun for devices constructed with the tBP complex.

  5. A Fine-Tuned Fluorinated MOF Addresses the Needs for Trace CO2 Removal and Air Capture Using Physisorption.

    PubMed

    Bhatt, Prashant M; Belmabkhout, Youssef; Cadiau, Amandine; Adil, Karim; Shekhah, Osama; Shkurenko, Aleksander; Barbour, Leonard J; Eddaoudi, Mohamed

    2016-07-27

    The development of functional solid-state materials for carbon capture at low carbon dioxide (CO2) concentrations, namely, from confined spaces (<0.5%) and in particular from air (400 ppm), is of prime importance with respect to energy and environment sustainability. Herein, we report the deliberate construction of a hydrolytically stable fluorinated metal-organic framework (MOF), NbOFFIVE-1-Ni, with the appropriate pore system (size, shape, and functionality), ideal for the effective and energy-efficient removal of trace carbon dioxide. Markedly, the CO2-selective NbOFFIVE-1-Ni exhibits the highest CO2 gravimetric and volumetric uptake (ca. 1.3 mmol/g and 51.4 cm(3) (STP) cm(-3)) for a physical adsorbent at 400 ppm of CO2 and 298 K. Practically, NbOFFIVE-1-Ni offers the complete CO2 desorption at 328 K under vacuum with an associated moderate energy input of 54 kJ/mol, typical for the full CO2 desorption in conventional physical adsorbents but considerably lower than chemical sorbents. Noticeably, the contracted square-like channels, affording the close proximity of the fluorine centers, permitted the enhancement of the CO2-framework interactions and subsequently the attainment of an unprecedented CO2 selectivity at very low CO2 concentrations. The precise localization of the adsorbed CO2 at the vicinity of the periodically aligned fluorine centers, promoting the selective adsorption of CO2, is evidenced by the single-crystal X-ray diffraction study on NbOFFIVE-1-Ni hosting CO2 molecules. Cyclic CO2/N2 mixed-gas column breakthrough experiments under dry and humid conditions corroborate the excellent CO2 selectivity under practical carbon capture conditions. Pertinently, the notable hydrolytic stability positions NbOFFIVE-1-Ni as the new benchmark adsorbent for direct air capture and CO2 removal from confined spaces.

  6. Fine-tuning Nanocarriers Specifically toward Cargo: A Competitive Study on Solubilizing Related Photosensitizers for Photodynamic Therapy.

    PubMed

    Wieczorek, Sebastian; Remmler, Dario; Masini, Tiziana; Kochovski, Zdravko; Hirsch, Anna K H; Börner, Hans G

    2017-03-15

    Tailor-made drug solubilizers are studied based on peptide-poly(ethylene glycol) conjugates, which exhibit peptide segments constituting binding motifs for the small-molecule drugs of interest to render them water-soluble. Suitable 7mer peptides are selected via combinatorial means by screening large one-bead-one-compound (OBOC) peptide libraries. The capability of the screening method to read out structural detail of the drugs is investigated by comparing three related photosensitizers (Chlorin E6 (Ce6), Pheophorbide A (Pba) and meta-tetra(hydroxyphenyl)chlorin (m-THPC), which are applicable for photodynamic cancer therapy. The screening procedure delivers de novo solubilizers that show the best solubilization efficiency for the drug the screening is performed with. While molecular recognition events between peptide and drug are not expected to be found, significant binding capacity differences of, e.g., the Ce6-solubilizer for Pba are suggesting selectivity in drug binding, even among structurally closely related drugs. Cyro-Electron microscopy revealed the formation of colloidal aggregates between drug moieties and peptide conjugates. Insights into relevant amino acids in the identified peptide sequences are gained by studying capacities of systematic point mutations (alanine scans), enabling understanding of drug-binding motifs. These reveal the importance of sequence positioning of appropriate H-bonding between polar functional groups of the peptide and the drugs, which agrees well with computational binding studies performed on drug/peptide model complexes.

  7. Positive and Negative Regulatory Mechanisms for Fine-Tuning Cellularity and Functions of Medullary Thymic Epithelial Cells

    PubMed Central

    Akiyama, Taishin; Tateishi, Ryosuke; Akiyama, Nobuko; Yoshinaga, Riko; Kobayashi, Tetsuya J.

    2015-01-01

    Self-tolerant T cells and regulatory T cells develop in the thymus. A wide variety of cell–cell interactions in the thymus is required for the differentiation, proliferation, and repertoire selection of T cells. Various secreted and cell surface molecules expressed in thymic epithelial cells (TECs) mediate these processes. Moreover, cytokines expressed by cells of hematopoietic origin regulate the cellularity of TECs. Tumor necrosis factor (TNF) family RANK ligand, lymphotoxin, and CD40 ligand, expressed in T cells and innate lymphoid cells (ILCs), promote the differentiation and proliferation of medullary TECs (mTECs) that play critical roles in the induction of immune tolerance. A recent study suggests that interleukin-22 (IL-22) produced by ILCs promotes regeneration of TECs after irradiation. Intriguingly, tumor growth factor-β and osteoprotegerin limit cellularity of mTECs, thereby attenuating regulatory T cell generation. We will review recent insights into the molecular basis for cell–cell interactions regulating differentiation and proliferation of mTECs and also discuss about a perspective on use of mathematical models for understanding this complicated system. PMID:26441966

  8. Identification of key phosphorylation sites in PTH1R that determine arrestin3 binding and fine-tune receptor signaling

    PubMed Central

    Zindel, Diana; Engel, Sandra; Bottrill, Andrew R.; Pin, Jean-Philippe; Prézeau, Laurent; Tobin, Andrew B.; Bünemann, Moritz; Krasel, Cornelius; Butcher, Adrian J.

    2016-01-01

    The parathyroid hormone receptor 1 (PTH1R) is a member of family B of G-protein-coupled receptors (GPCRs), predominantly expressed in bone and kidney where it modulates extracellular Ca2+ homeostasis and bone turnover. It is well established that phosphorylation of GPCRs constitutes a key event in regulating receptor function by promoting arrestin recruitment and coupling to G-protein-independent signaling pathways. Mapping phosphorylation sites on PTH1R would provide insights into how phosphorylation at specific sites regulates cell signaling responses and also open the possibility of developing therapeutic agents that could target specific receptor functions. Here, we have used mass spectrometry to identify nine sites of phosphorylation in the C-terminal tail of PTH1R. Mutational analysis revealed identified two clusters of serine and threonine residues (Ser489–Ser495 and Ser501–Thr506) specifically responsible for the majority of PTH(1–34)-induced receptor phosphorylation. Mutation of these residues to alanine did not affect negatively on the ability of the receptor to couple to G-proteins or activate extracellular-signal-regulated kinase 1/2. Using fluorescence resonance energy transfer and bioluminescence resonance energy transfer to monitor PTH(1–34)-induced interaction of PTH1R with arrestin3, we show that the first cluster Ser489–Ser495 and the second cluster Ser501–Thr506 operated in concert to mediate both the efficacy and potency of ligand-induced arrestin3 recruitment. We further demonstrate that Ser503 and Thr504 in the second cluster are responsible for 70% of arrestin3 recruitment and are key determinants for interaction of arrestin with the receptor. Our data are consistent with the hypothesis that the pattern of C-terminal tail phosphorylation on PTH1R may determine the signaling outcome following receptor activation. PMID:27623777

  9. Fine-Tuning of the Carbon Dioxide Capture Capability of Diamine-Grafted Metal-Organic Framework Adsorbents Through Amine Functionalization.

    PubMed

    Jo, Hyuna; Lee, Woo Ram; Kim, Nam Woo; Jung, Hyun; Lim, Kwang Soo; Kim, Jeong Eun; Kang, Dong Won; Lee, Hanyeong; Hiremath, Vishwanath; Seo, Jeong Gil; Jin, Hailian; Moon, Dohyun; Han, Sang Soo; Hong, Chang Seop

    2017-02-08

    A combined sonication and microwave irradiation procedure provides the most effective functionalization of ethylenediamine (en) and branched primary diamines of 1-methylethylenediamine (men) and 1,1-dimethylethylenediamine (den) onto the open metal sites of Mg2 (dobpdc) (1). The CO2 capacities of the advanced adsorbents 1-en and 1-men under simulated flue gas conditions are 19 wt % and 17.4 wt %, respectively, which are the highest values reported among amine-functionalized metal-organic frameworks (MOFs) to date. Moreover, 1-den exhibits both a significant working capacity (12.2 wt %) and superb CO2 uptake (11 wt %) at 3 % CO2 . Additionally, this framework showcases the superior recyclability; ultrahigh stability after exposure to O2 , moisture, and SO2 ; and exceptional CO2 adsorption capacity under humid conditions, which are unprecedented among MOFs. We also elucidate that the performance of CO2 adsorption can be controlled by the structure of the diamine ligands grafted such as the number of amine end groups or the presence of side groups, which provides the first systematic and comprehensive demonstration of fine-tuning of CO2 uptake capability using different amines.

  10. Sox2 in the dermal papilla niche controls hair growth by fine-tuning Bmp signaling in differentiating hair shaft progenitors

    PubMed Central

    Clavel, Carlos; Grisanti, Laura; Zemla, Roland; Rezza, Amelie; Barros, Rita; Sennett, Rachel; Mazloom, Amin; Chung, Chi-Yeh; Cai, Xiaoqiang; Cai, Chen-Leng; Pevny, Larysa; Nicolis, Silvia; Ma’ayan, Avi; Rendl, Michael

    2012-01-01

    SUMMARY How dermal papilla (DP) niche cells regulate hair follicle progenitors to control hair growth remains unclear. Using Tbx18Cre to target embryonic DP precursors, we ablate the transcription factor Sox2 early and efficiently, resulting in diminished hair shaft outgrowth. We find that DP niche expression of Sox2 controls the migration rate of differentiating hair shaft progenitors. Transcriptional profiling of Sox2 null DPs reveals increased Bmp6 and decreased Bmp inhibitor Sostdc1, a direct Sox2 transcriptional target. Subsequently, we identify upregulated Bmp signaling in knockout hair shaft progenitors and demonstrate that Bmps inhibit cell migration, an effect that can be attenuated by Sostdc1. A shorter and Sox2-negative hair type lacks Sostdc1 in the DP and shows reduced migration and increased Bmp activity of hair shaft progenitors. Collectively, our data identify Sox2 as a key regulator of hair growth that controls progenitor migration by fine-tuning Bmp-mediated mesenchymal-epithelial crosstalk. PMID:23153495

  11. Fine tuning of emission property of white light-emitting diodes by quantum-dot-coating on YAG:Ce nanophosphors

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kong, Dal Sung; Kim, Min Jeong; Song, Hee Jo; Cho, In Sun; Jeong, Sohee; Shin, Hyunjung; Lee, Sangwook; Jung, Hyun Suk

    2016-08-01

    We report fine tuning of emission color of Ce-doped yttrium aluminum garnet (Y3Al5O12:Ce3+, YAG:Ce) nanophosphor-based white light-emitting diodes (WLED), by coating CdSe/CdS/ZnS quantum dots (QDs) onto the surface of the YAG:Ce nanoparticles via surface functionalization of both the QDs and the YAG:Ce. Mixture of bromo-functionalized QDs and amino-functionalized YAG:Ce nanoparticles results in conformal coating of the QDs onto the YAG:Ce nanoparticles (QD@YAG:Ce). By varying the QD to YAG:Ce weight ratios, the luminescence spectra of the QD@YAG:Ce are tuned. A high-quality warm-white-light emission is achieved by appropriate combination of the yellow and red emissions from the QD@YAG:Ce, and the blue emission from InGaN LED chip. However, without surface functionalization, irregular mixtures of YAG:Ce and QDs are formed, which consequently make it hard to control the emission spectra. This study demonstrates a promising way to prepare uniformly QD-coated nanophosphors and an approach to control the emission spectra the nanophosphors.

  12. Full phosphorescent white-light organic light-emitting diodes with improved color stability and efficiency by fine tuning primary emission contributions

    SciTech Connect

    Hua, Wang E-mail: wanghua001@tyut.edu.cn; Du, Xiaogang; Su, Wenming E-mail: wanghua001@tyut.edu.cn; Zhang, Dongyu; Lin, Wenjing

    2014-02-15

    In this paper, a novel type of white-light organic light emitting diode (OLED) with high color stability was reported, in which the yellow-light emission layer of (4,4{sup ′}-N,N{sup ′}-dicarbazole)biphenyl (CBP) : tris(2-phenylquinoline-C2,N{sup ′})iridium(III) (Ir(2-phq){sub 3}) was sandwiched by double blue-light emission layers of 1,1-bis-[(di-4-tolylamino)pheny1]cyclohexane (TAPC) : bis[4,6-(di-fluorophenyl)-pyridinato-N,C2{sup ′}]picolinate (FIrpic) and tris[3-(3-pyridyl)mesityl]borane (3TPYMB):FIrpic. And, it exhibited the maximum current efficiency of 33.1 cd/A, the turn-on voltage at about 3 V and the maximum luminance in excess of 20000 cd/m{sup 2}. More important, it realized very stable white-light emission, and its CIE(x, y) coordinates only shift from (0.34, 0.37) to (0.33, 0.37) as applied voltage increased from 5 V to 12 V. It is believed that the new scheme in emission layer of white-light OLED can fine tune the contribution of primary emission with applied voltage changed, resulting in high quality white-light OLED.

  13. Plasma Membrane CRPK1-Mediated Phosphorylation of 14-3-3 Proteins Induces Their Nuclear Import to Fine-Tune CBF Signaling during Cold Response.

    PubMed

    Liu, Ziyan; Jia, Yuxin; Ding, Yanglin; Shi, Yiting; Li, Zhen; Guo, Yan; Gong, Zhizhong; Yang, Shuhua

    2017-04-06

    In plant cells, changes in fluidity of the plasma membrane may serve as the primary sensor of cold stress; however, the precise mechanism and how the cell transduces and fine-tunes cold signals remain elusive. Here we show that the cold-activated plasma membrane protein cold-responsive protein kinase 1 (CRPK1) phosphorylates 14-3-3 proteins. The phosphorylated 14-3-3 proteins shuttle from the cytosol to the nucleus, where they interact with and destabilize the key cold-responsive C-repeat-binding factor (CBF) proteins. Consistent with this, the crpk1 and 14-3-3κλ mutants show enhanced freezing tolerance, and transgenic plants overexpressing 14-3-3λ show reduced freezing tolerance. Further study shows that CRPK1 is essential for the nuclear translocation of 14-3-3 proteins and for 14-3-3 function in freezing tolerance. Thus, our study reveals that the CRPK1-14-3-3 module transduces the cold signal from the plasma membrane to the nucleus to modulate CBF stability, which ensures a faithfully adjusted response to cold stress of plants. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  14. Listeria monocytogenes CadC regulates cadmium efflux and fine-tunes lipoprotein localization to escape the host immune response and promote infection.

    PubMed

    Pombinho, Rita; Camejo, Ana; Vieira, Ana; Reis, Olga; Carvalho, Filipe; Almeida, Maria Teresa; Pinheiro, Jorge Campos; Sousa, Sandra; Cabanes, Didier

    2017-03-23

    Listeria monocytogenes (Lm) is a major intracellular human foodborne bacterial pathogen. We previously revealed Lm-cadC as highly expressed during mouse infection. Here we show that Lm-CadC is a sequence-specific, DNA-binding and cadmium-dependent regulator of CadA, an efflux pump conferring cadmium resistance. CadC, but not CadA, is required for Lm infection in vivo. Interestingly, CadC also directly represses lspB, a gene encoding a lipoprotein signal peptidase whose expression appears detrimental for infection. lspB overexpression promotes the release of the LpeA lipoprotein to the extracellular medium, inducing TNF- and IL-6 expression, thus impairing Lm survival in macrophages. We propose that Lm uses CadC to repress lspB expression during infection to avoid LpeA exposure to the host immune system, diminishing inflammatory cytokine expression and promoting intramacrophage survival and virulence. CadC appears as the first metal efflux pump regulator repurposed during infection to fine-tune lipoprotein processing and host responses.

  15. Fine-tuning of NFκB by Glycogen Synthase Kinase 3β directs the fate of glomerular podocytes upon injury

    PubMed Central

    Bao, Hui; Ge, Yan; Peng, Ai; Gong, Rujun

    2014-01-01

    NFκB is regulated by a myriad of signaling cascades including glycogen synthase kinase (GSK) 3β and plays a Janus role in podocyte injury. In vitro, lipopolysaccharide or adriamycin elicited podocyte injury and cytoskeletal disruption, associated with NFκB activation and induced expression of NFκB target molecules, including pro-survival Bcl-xL and podocytopathic mediators like MCP-1, cathepsin L and B7-1. Broad range inhibition of NFκB diminished the expression of all NFκB target genes, restored cytoskeleton integrity, but potentiated apoptosis. In contrast, blockade of GSK3β by lithium or TDZD-8, mitigated the expression of podocytopathic mediators, ameliorated podocyte injury, but barely affected Bcl-xL expression or sensitized apoptosis. Mechanistically, GSK3β was sufficient and essential for RelA/p65 phosphorylation specifically at serine 467, which specifies the expression of selective NFκB target molecules, including podocytopathic mediators, but not Bcl-xL. In vivo, lithium or TDZD-8 therapy improved podocyte injury and proteinuria in mice treated with lipopolysaccharide or adriamycin, concomitant with suppression of podocytopathic mediators but retained Bcl-xL in glomerulus. Broad range inhibition of NFκB conferred similar but much weakened antiproteinuric and podoprotective effects accompanied with a blunted glomerular expression of Bcl-xL and marked podocyte apoptosis. Thus, the GSK3β dictated fine-tuning of NFκB may serve as a novel therapeutic target for podocytopathy. PMID:25629551

  16. Preserved fine-tuning of face perception and memory: evidence from the own-race bias in high- and low-performing older adults

    PubMed Central

    Komes, Jessica; Schweinberger, Stefan R.; Wiese, Holger

    2014-01-01

    Previous research suggests specific deficits in face perception and memory in older adults, which could reflect a dedifferentiation in the context of a general broadening of cognitive architecture with advanced age. Such dedifferentiation could manifest in a less specialized face processing system. A promising tool to investigate the fine-tuning of face processing in older age is the own-race bias (ORB), a phenomenon reflecting more accurate memory for own-relative to other-race faces, which is related to an expertise-based specialization of early perceptual stages. To investigate whether poor face memory in older age is accompanied by reduced expertise-based specialization of face processing, we assessed event-related brain potential correlates of the ORB in high- vs. low-performing older adults (mean age = 69 years; N = 24 per group). Intriguingly, both older groups demonstrated an equivalent pattern of a behavioral ORB, and a parallel increase in N170 for other-race faces, reflecting less efficient early perceptual processing for this face category. Group differences only emerged independent of face ethnicity: whereas low-performers exhibited a right-lateralized N170, high-performers showed a more bilateral response. This finding may suggest a compensatory mechanism counteracting age-related decline in face perception enabling more efficient encoding into memory in high performers. Overall, our results demonstrate that even a less efficient face processing system in older adults can exhibit preserved expertise-related specialization toward own-race faces. PMID:24772080

  17. Fine-Tuning of the Coordination Environment To Regulate the Magnetic Behavior in Solvent/Anion-Dependent Dy(III) Compounds: Synthesis, Structure, Magnetism, and Ab Initio Calculations.

    PubMed

    Sun, Lin; Zhang, Sheng; Qiao, Chengfang; Chen, Sanping; Yin, Bing; Wang, Wenyuan; Wei, Qing; Xie, Gang; Gao, Shengli

    2016-10-17

    It is crucial to understand and elucidate the self-assembly mechanism in solution systems for the construction of Dy(III)-based single-molecule magnets (SMMs). Herein, through fine-tuning of the anion and solvent, we prepared three nine-coordinate mononuclear dysprosium compounds, [Dy(2,3'-pcad)(NO3)2(CH3OH)2] (1), [Dy(2,3'-Hpcad)2(H2O)3]·3Cl·5H2O (2), and [Dy(2,3'-pcad)(NO3)(H2O)4]·NO3·H2O (3) [2,3'-Hpcad = N(3)-(2-pyridoyl)-3-pyridinecarboxamidrazone]. The reactions of formation for 1-3 are in situ thermodynamically monitored by isothermal titration calorimetry. Magnetic data analysis reveals that 2 shows SMM behavior under a zero direct-current (dc) field, whereas 1 and 3 exhibit distinct slow magnetic relaxation processes upon a 1200 Oe dc field. To deeply understand the different magnetic behaviors, the magnetic anisotropy of 1-3 has been systematically studied by ab initio calculations, which is consistent with the experimental observations. Moreover, the semiconductor behaviors of 1-3 have been investigated by experimental measurements of UV-vis spectroscopy.

  18. Enzymatic profiling of cellulosomal enzymes from the human gut bacterium, Ruminococcus champanellensis, reveals a fine-tuned system for cohesin-dockerin recognition.

    PubMed

    Moraïs, Sarah; Ben David, Yonit; Bensoussan, Lizi; Duncan, Sylvia H; Koropatkin, Nicole M; Martens, Eric C; Flint, Harry J; Bayer, Edward A

    2016-02-01

    Ruminococcus champanellensis is considered a keystone species in the human gut that degrades microcrystalline cellulose efficiently and contains the genetic elements necessary for cellulosome production. The basic elements of its cellulosome architecture, mainly cohesin and dockerin modules from scaffoldins and enzyme-borne dockerins, have been characterized recently. In this study, we cloned, expressed and characterized all of the glycoside hydrolases that contain a dockerin module. Among the 25 enzymes, 10 cellulases, 4 xylanases, 3 mannanases, 2 xyloglucanases, 2 arabinofuranosidases, 2 arabinanases and one β-glucanase were assessed for their comparative enzymatic activity on their respective substrates. The dockerin specificities of the enzymes were examined by ELISA, and 80 positives out of 525 possible interactions were detected. Our analysis reveals a fine-tuned system for cohesin-dockerin specificity and the importance of diversity among the cohesin-dockerin sequences. Our results imply that cohesin-dockerin pairs are not necessarily assembled at random among the same specificity types, as generally believed for other cellulosome-producing bacteria, but reveal a more organized cellulosome architecture. Moreover, our results highlight the importance of the cellulosome paradigm for cellulose and hemicellulose degradation by R. champanellensis in the human gut. © 2015 Society for Applied Microbiology and John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  19. 3′-UTR engineering to improve soluble expression and fine-tuning of activity of cascade enzymes in Escherichia coli

    PubMed Central

    Song, Ji-Won; Woo, Ji-Min; Jung, Gyoo Yeol; Bornscheuer, Uwe T.; Park, Jin-Byung

    2016-01-01

    3′-Untranslated region (3′UTR) engineering was investigated to improve solubility of heterologous proteins (e.g., Baeyer-Villiger monooxygenases (BVMOs)) in Escherichia coli. Insertion of gene fragments containing putative RNase E recognition sites into the 3′UTR of the BVMO genes led to the reduction of mRNA levels in E. coli. Importantly, the amounts of soluble BVMOs were remarkably enhanced resulting in a proportional increase of in vivo catalytic activities. Notably, this increase in biocatalytic activity correlated to the number of putative RNase E endonucleolytic cleavage sites in the 3′UTR. For instance, the biotransformation activity of the BVMO BmoF1 (from Pseudomonas fluorescens DSM50106) in E. coli was linear to the number of RNase E cleavage sites in the 3′UTR. In summary, 3′UTR engineering can be used to improve the soluble expression of heterologous enzymes, thereby fine-tuning the enzyme activity in microbial cells. PMID:27406241

  20. Pore radius fine tuning of a silica matrix (MCM-41) based on the synthesis of alumina nanolayers with different thicknesses by atomic layer deposition

    SciTech Connect

    Zemtsova, Elena G. Arbenin, Andrei Yu.; Plotnikov, Alexander F.; Smirnov, Vladimir M.

    2015-03-15

    The authors investigated a new approach to modify the surface of the mesoporous silica matrix MCM-41. This approach is based on manipulating the chemical composition of the porous surface layer and also on fine tuning the pore radius by applying the atomic layer deposition (ALD) technique. The synthesis of alumina nanolayers was performed on the planar and the porous matrix (MCM-41) by the ALD technique using aluminum tri-sec-butoxide and water as precursors. The authors show that one cycle on silicon, using aluminum tri-sec-butoxide and water as precursors, results in a 1–1.2 Å increase in alumina nanolayer thickness. This is comparable to the increase in thickness per cycle for other precursors such as trimethylaluminum and aluminum chloride. The authors show that the synthesis of an Al{sub 2}O{sub 3} nanolayer on the pore surface of the mesoporous silica matrix MCM-41 by the ALD technique results in a regular change in the porous structure of the samples. The specific porosity (ml/g) of the MCM-41 was 0.95 and that of MCM-41 after 5 ALD cycles was 0.39. The pore diameter (nm) of MCM-41 was 3.3 and that of MCM-41 after 5 ALD cycles was 2.3.

  1. Capability for Fine Tuning of the Refractive Index Sensing Properties of Long-Period Gratings by Atomic Layer Deposited Al2O3 Overlays

    PubMed Central

    Śmietana, Mateusz; Myśliwiec, Marcin; Mikulic, Predrag; Witkowski, Bartłomiej S.; Bock, Wojtek J.

    2013-01-01

    This work presents an application of thin aluminum oxide (Al2O3) films obtained using atomic layer deposition (ALD) for fine tuning the spectral response and refractive-index (RI) sensitivity of long-period gratings (LPGs) induced in optical fibers. The technique allows for an efficient and well controlled deposition at monolayer level (resolution ∼ 0.12 nm) of excellent quality nano-films as required for optical sensors. The effect of Al2O3 deposition on the spectral properties of the LPGs is demonstrated experimentally and numerically. We correlated both the increase in Al2O3 thickness and changes in optical properties of the film with the shift of the LPG resonance wavelength and proved that similar films are deposited on fibers and oxidized silicon reference samples in the same process run. Since the thin overlay effectively changes the distribution of the cladding modes and thus also tunes the device's RI sensitivity, the tuning can be simply realized by varying number of cycles, which is proportional to thickness of the high-refractive-index (n > 1.6 in infrared spectral range) Al2O3 film. The advantage of this approach is the precision in determining the film properties resulting in RI sensitivity of the LPGs. To the best of our knowledge, this is the first time that an ultra-precise method for overlay deposition has been applied on LPGs for RI tuning purposes and the results have been compared with numerical simulations based on LP mode approximation.

  2. Fine-Tuning of the Actin Cytoskeleton and Cell Adhesion During Drosophila Development by the Unconventional Guanine Nucleotide Exchange Factors Myoblast City and Sponge.

    PubMed

    Biersmith, Bridget; Wang, Zong-Heng; Geisbrecht, Erika R

    2015-06-01

    The evolutionarily conserved Dock proteins function as unconventional guanine nucleotide exchange factors (GEFs). Upon binding to engulfment and cell motility (ELMO) proteins, Dock-ELMO complexes activate the Rho family of small GTPases to mediate a diverse array of biological processes, including cell motility, apoptotic cell clearance, and axon guidance. Overlapping expression patterns and functional redundancy among the 11 vertebrate Dock family members, which are subdivided into four families (Dock A, B, C, and D), complicate genetic analysis. In both vertebrate and invertebrate systems, the actin dynamics regulator, Rac, is the target GTPase of the Dock-A subfamily. However, it remains unclear whether Rac or Rap1 are the in vivo downstream GTPases of the Dock-B subfamily. Drosophila melanogaster is an excellent genetic model organism for understanding Dock protein function as its genome encodes one ortholog per subfamily: Myoblast city (Mbc; Dock A) and Sponge (Spg; Dock B). Here we show that the roles of Spg and Mbc are not redundant in the Drosophila somatic muscle or the dorsal vessel. Moreover, we confirm the in vivo role of Mbc upstream of Rac and provide evidence that Spg functions in concert with Rap1, possibly to regulate aspects of cell adhesion. Together these data show that Mbc and Spg can have different downstream GTPase targets. Our findings predict that the ability to regulate downstream GTPases is dependent on cellular context and allows for the fine-tuning of actin cytoskeletal or cell adhesion events in biological processes that undergo cell morphogenesis.

  3. The Catalytic and Non-catalytic Functions of the Brahma Chromatin-Remodeling Protein Collaborate to Fine-Tune Circadian Transcription in Drosophila

    PubMed Central

    Kwok, Rosanna S.; Li, Ying H.; Lei, Anna J.; Edery, Isaac; Chiu, Joanna C.

    2015-01-01

    Daily rhythms in gene expression play a critical role in the progression of circadian clocks, and are under regulation by transcription factor binding, histone modifications, RNA polymerase II (RNAPII) recruitment and elongation, and post-transcriptional mechanisms. Although previous studies have shown that clock-controlled genes exhibit rhythmic chromatin modifications, less is known about the functions performed by chromatin remodelers in animal clockwork. Here we have identified the Brahma (Brm) complex as a regulator of the Drosophila clock. In Drosophila, CLOCK (CLK) is the master transcriptional activator driving cyclical gene expression by participating in an auto-inhibitory feedback loop that involves stimulating the expression of the main negative regulators, period (per) and timeless (tim). BRM functions catalytically to increase nucleosome density at the promoters of per and tim, creating an overall restrictive chromatin landscape to limit transcriptional output during the active phase of cycling gene expression. In addition, the non-catalytic function of BRM regulates the level and binding of CLK to target promoters and maintains transient RNAPII stalling at the per promoter, likely by recruiting repressive and pausing factors. By disentangling its catalytic versus non-catalytic functions at the promoters of CLK target genes, we uncovered a multi-leveled mechanism in which BRM fine-tunes circadian transcription. PMID:26132408

  4. Sox2 in the dermal papilla niche controls hair growth by fine-tuning BMP signaling in differentiating hair shaft progenitors.

    PubMed

    Clavel, Carlos; Grisanti, Laura; Zemla, Roland; Rezza, Amelie; Barros, Rita; Sennett, Rachel; Mazloom, Amin Reza; Chung, Chi-Yeh; Cai, Xiaoqiang; Cai, Chen-Leng; Pevny, Larysa; Nicolis, Silvia; Ma'ayan, Avi; Rendl, Michael

    2012-11-13

    How dermal papilla (DP) niche cells regulate hair follicle progenitors to control hair growth remains unclear. Using Tbx18(Cre) to target embryonic DP precursors, we ablate the transcription factor Sox2 early and efficiently, resulting in diminished hair shaft outgrowth. We find that DP niche expression of Sox2 controls the migration speed of differentiating hair shaft progenitors. Transcriptional profiling of Sox2 null DPs reveals increased Bmp6 and decreased BMP inhibitor Sostdc1, a direct Sox2 transcriptional target. Subsequently, we identify upregulated BMP signaling in knockout hair shaft progenitors and demonstrate that Bmp6 inhibits cell migration, an effect that can be attenuated by Sostdc1. A shorter and Sox2-negative hair type lacks Sostdc1 in the DP and shows reduced migration and increased BMP activity of hair shaft progenitors. Collectively, our data identify Sox2 as a key regulator of hair growth that controls progenitor migration by fine-tuning BMP-mediated mesenchymal-epithelial crosstalk.

  5. Fine-Tuning of the Actin Cytoskeleton and Cell Adhesion During Drosophila Development by the Unconventional Guanine Nucleotide Exchange Factors Myoblast City and Sponge

    PubMed Central

    Biersmith, Bridget; Wang, Zong-Heng; Geisbrecht, Erika R.

    2015-01-01

    The evolutionarily conserved Dock proteins function as unconventional guanine nucleotide exchange factors (GEFs). Upon binding to engulfment and cell motility (ELMO) proteins, Dock–ELMO complexes activate the Rho family of small GTPases to mediate a diverse array of biological processes, including cell motility, apoptotic cell clearance, and axon guidance. Overlapping expression patterns and functional redundancy among the 11 vertebrate Dock family members, which are subdivided into four families (Dock A, B, C, and D), complicate genetic analysis. In both vertebrate and invertebrate systems, the actin dynamics regulator, Rac, is the target GTPase of the Dock-A subfamily. However, it remains unclear whether Rac or Rap1 are the in vivo downstream GTPases of the Dock-B subfamily. Drosophila melanogaster is an excellent genetic model organism for understanding Dock protein function as its genome encodes one ortholog per subfamily: Myoblast city (Mbc; Dock A) and Sponge (Spg; Dock B). Here we show that the roles of Spg and Mbc are not redundant in the Drosophila somatic muscle or the dorsal vessel. Moreover, we confirm the in vivo role of Mbc upstream of Rac and provide evidence that Spg functions in concert with Rap1, possibly to regulate aspects of cell adhesion. Together these data show that Mbc and Spg can have different downstream GTPase targets. Our findings predict that the ability to regulate downstream GTPases is dependent on cellular context and allows for the fine-tuning of actin cytoskeletal or cell adhesion events in biological processes that undergo cell morphogenesis. PMID:25908317

  6. A general and high yielding fragment coupling synthesis of heteroatom-bridged calixarenes and the unprecedented examples of calixarene cavity fine-tuned by bridging heteroatoms.

    PubMed

    Wang, Mei-Xiang; Yang, Hai-Bo

    2004-12-01

    A number of aza- and/or oxo-bridged calix[2]arene[2]triazines have been synthesized through an unusually high yielding and efficient fragment coupling approach starting from cyanuric chloride and resorcinol, 3-aminophenol, m-phenylenediamine, and N,N'-dimethyl-m-phenylenediamine. These novel macrocycles, which belong to the next generation of calixarenes or cyclophanes, form a unique cavity that is resulted from two isolated benzene planes and two bis-heteroatom-conjugated triazine planes in a 1,3-alternate fashion. The nature of the bridging heteroatoms, i.e., combination of the electronic, conjugative, and steric effects of the nitrogen and oxygen atoms, strongly regulates the cavity size, generating a set of fine-tuned cavities in which the distance between two benzene rings at the upper rim ranges from 5.011 to 7.979 A. The multiple intermolecular hydrogen bond interactions among N,N'-dimethylated tetraazacalix[2]arene[2]triazines and among tetraazacalix[2]arene[2]triazines lead to the formation of infinite one-dimensional chain structure and two-dimensional zigzag layered structure, respectively, in the solid state. The ease of preparation and further chemical manipulations, and the readily tunable cavity structures render these aza- and/or oxo-bridged calix[2]arene[2]triazines the unique platforms in the study of supramolecular chemistry.

  7. Listeria monocytogenes CadC regulates cadmium efflux and fine-tunes lipoprotein localization to escape the host immune response and promote infection.

    PubMed

    Pombinho, Rita; Camejo, Ana; Vieira, Ana; Reis, Olga; Carvalho, Filipe; Almeida, Maria Teresa; Pinheiro, Jorge Campos; Sousa, Sandra; Cabanes, Didier

    2017-03-09

    Listeria monocytogenes (Lm) is a major intracellular human foodborne bacterial pathogen. We previously revealed Lm-cadC as highly expressed during mouse infection. Here we show that Lm-CadC is a sequence-specific, DNA-binding and cadmium-dependent regulator of CadA, an efflux pump conferring cadmium resistance. CadC, but not CadA, is required for Lm infection in vivo. Interestingly, CadC also directly represses lspB, a gene encoding a lipoprotein signal peptidase whose expression appears detrimental for infection. lspB overexpression promotes the release of the LpeA lipoprotein to the extracellular medium, inducing TNF- and IL-6 expression, thus impairing Lm survival in macrophages. We propose that Lm uses CadC to repress lspB expression during infection to avoid LpeA exposure to the host immune system, diminishing inflammatory cytokine expression and promoting intramacrophage survival and virulence. CadC appears as the first metal efflux pump regulator repurposed during infection to fine-tune lipoprotein processing and host responses.

  8. Nicotinic modulation of glutamate receptor function at nerve terminal level: a fine-tuning of synaptic signals.

    PubMed

    Marchi, Mario; Grilli, Massimo; Pittaluga, Anna M

    2015-01-01

    This review focuses on a specific interaction occurring between the nicotinic cholinergic receptors (nAChRs) and the glutamatergic receptors (GluRs) at the nerve endings level. We have employed synaptosomes in superfusion and supplemented and integrated our findings with data obtained using techniques from molecular biology and immuno-cytochemistry, and the assessment of receptor trafficking. In particular, we characterize the following: (1) the direct and unequivocal localization of native α-amino-3-hydroxy-5-methyl-4-isoxazolepropionic acid (AMPA) and N-methyl-D-aspartate (NMDA) glutamatergic receptors on specific nerve terminals, (2) their pharmacological characterization and functional co-localization with nAChRs on the same nerve endings, and (3) the existence of synergistic or antagonistic interactions among them. Indeed, in the rat nucleus accumbens (NAc), the function of some AMPA and NMDA receptors present on the dopaminergic and glutamatergic nerve terminals can be regulated negatively or positively in response to a brief activation of nAChRs. This effect occurs rapidly and involves the trafficking of AMPA and NMDA receptors. The event takes place also at very low concentrations of nicotine and involves the activation of several nAChRs subtypes. This dynamic control by cholinergic nicotinic system of glutamatergic NMDA and AMPA receptors might therefore represent an important neuronal presynaptic adaptation associated with nicotine administration. The understanding of the role of these nicotine-induced functional changes might open new and interesting perspectives both in terms of explaining the mechanisms that underlie some of the effects of nicotine addiction and in the development of new drugs for smoking cessation.

  9. Calreticulin is a fine tuning molecule in epibrassinolide-induced apoptosis through activating endoplasmic reticulum stress in colon cancer cells.

    PubMed

    Obakan-Yerlikaya, Pinar; Arisan, Elif Damla; Coker-Gurkan, Ajda; Adacan, Kaan; Ozbey, Utku; Somuncu, Berna; Baran, Didem; Palavan-Unsal, Narcin

    2017-06-01

    Epibrassinolide (EBR), a member of brassinostreoids plant hormones with cell proliferation promoting role in plants, is a natural polyhydroxysteroid with structural similarity to steroid hormones of vertebrates. EBR has antiproliferative and apoptosis-inducing effect in various cancer cells. Although EBR has been shown to affect survival and mitochondria-mediated apoptosis pathways in a p53-independent manner, the exact molecular targets of EBR are still under investigation. Our recent SILAC (Stable Isotope Labeling by Amino Acids in Cell Culture) data showed that the most significantly altered protein after EBR treatment was calreticulin (CALR). CALR, a chaperone localized in endoplasmic reticulum (ER) lumen, plays role in protein folding and buffering Ca(2+) ions. The alteration of CALR may cause ER stress and unfolded protein response correspondingly the induction of apoptosis. Unfolded proteins are conducted to 26S proteasomal degradation following ubiquitination. Our study revealed that EBR treatment caused ER stress and UPR by altering CALR expression causing caspase-dependent apoptosis in HCT 116, HT29, DLD-1, and SW480 colon cancer cells. Furthermore, 48 h EBR treatment did not caused UPR in Fetal Human Colon cells (FHC) and Mouse Embryonic Fibroblast cells (MEF). In addition our findings showed that HCT 116 colon cancer cells lacking Bax and Puma expression still undergo UPR and related apoptosis. CALR silencing and rapamycin co-treatment prevented EBR-induced UPR and apoptosis, whereas 26S proteasome inhibition further increased the effect of EBR in colon cancer cells. All these findings showed that EBR is an ER stress and apoptotic inducer in colon cancer cells without affecting non-malignant cells. © 2017 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  10. Potential energy hypersurface and molecular flexibility

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Koča, Jaroslav

    1993-02-01

    The molecular flexibility phenomenon is discussed from the conformational potential energy(hyper) surface (PES) point of view. Flexibility is considered as a product of three terms: thermodynamic, kinetic and geometrical. Several expressions characterizing absolute and relative molecular flexibility are introduced, depending on a subspace studied of the entire conformational space, energy level E of PES as well as absolute temperature. Results obtained by programs DAISY, CICADA and PANIC in conjunction with molecular mechanics program MMX for flexibility analysis of isopentane, 2,2-dimethylpentane and isohexane molecules are introduced.

  11. Photoisomerization of a maleonitrile-type salen Schiff base and its application in fine-tuning infinite coordination polymers.

    PubMed

    Lin, Chun-Wei; Chou, Pi-Tai; Liao, Yong-Hong; Lin, Ying-Chih; Chen, Ching-Ting; Chen, Yu-Chun; Lai, Chin-Hung; Chen, Bo-So; Liu, Yi-Hung; Wang, Chih-Chieh; Ho, Mei-Lin

    2010-03-22

    Strategically designed salen ligand 2,3-bis[4-(di-p-tolylamino)-2-hydroxybenzylideneamino]maleonitrile (1), which has pronounced excited-state charge-transfer properties, shows a previously unrecognized form of photoisomerization. On electronic excitation (denoted by an asterisk), 1Z*-->1E isomerization takes place by rotation about the C2--C3 bond, which takes on single-bond character due to the charge-transfer reaction. The isomerization takes place nonadiabatically from the excited-state (1Z) to the ground-state (1E) potential-energy surface in the singlet manifold; 1Z and 1E are neither thermally inconvertible at ambient temperature (25-30 degrees C), nor does photoinduced reverse 1E*-->1Z (or 1Z*) isomerization occur. Isomers 1Z and 1E show very different coordination chemistry towards a Zn(II) precursor. More prominent coordination chemistry is evidenced by a derivative of 1 bearing a carboxyl group, namely, N,N'-dicyanoethenebis(salicylideneimine)dicarboxylic acid (2). Applying 2Z and its photoinduced isomer 2E as building blocks, we then demonstrate remarkable differences in morphology (sphere- and needlelike nanostructure, respectively) of their infinite coordination polymers with Zn(II).

  12. Fine-tuning Philippine transactions

    SciTech Connect

    Vitale, R.

    1994-11-01

    Expanding the power generation and distribution capability of the Philippines remains a top priority of the Philippine government. It is therefore not surprising that a number of the most significant legislative initiatives approved by the Philippine legislature in the past few years have been designed to encourage these activities in particular. There are several recent, significant statutes that will affect both power and non-power projects undertaken in the Philippines.

  13. Fine-Tuning Teacher Evaluation

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Marshall, Kim

    2012-01-01

    As many states and districts rethink teacher supervision and evaluation, the team at the Measures of Effective Teaching (MET) Project, funded by the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, has analyzed thousands of lesson videotapes and studied the shortcomings of current practices. The tentative conclusion: Teachers should be evaluated on three…

  14. The weak, fine-tuned binding of ubiquitous transcription factors to the Il-2 enhancer contributes to its T cell-restricted activity.

    PubMed Central

    Hentsch, B; Mouzaki, A; Pfeuffer, I; Rungger, D; Serfling, E

    1992-01-01

    The T lymphocyte-specific enhancers of the murine and human Interleukin 2 (Il-2) genes harbour several binding sites for ubiquitous transcription factors. All these sites for the binding of AP-1, NF-kB or Oct-1 are non-canonical sites, i.e. they differ in one or a few base pairs from consensus sequences for the optimal binding of these factors. Although the factors bind weakly to these sites, the latter are functionally important because their mutation to non-binding sites results in a decrease of inducible activity of the Il-2 enhancer. Conversion of three sites to canonical binding sites of Octamer factors, AP-1 and NF-kB results in a drastic increase in enhancer activity and the induction of the Il-2 enhancer in non-T cells, such as B cell lines, murine L cells and human HeLa cells. The introduction of two or three canonical sites into the enhancer leads to a further increase of its activity. Il-2 enhancer induction is also observed in B cells when the concentration of AP-1 and Oct factors increases as a result of cotransfections with FosB and Octamer expression plasmids. When Il-2 enhancer constructs carrying canonical factor binding sites were injected into Xenopus oocytes the strong binding of ubiquitous factors substantially overcomes the silencing effect of negatively acting factors present in resting primary T lymphocytes. These results suggest a fine-tuned interplay between ubiquitous and lymphoid-specific factors binding to and transactivating the Il-2 enhancer and show that the binding affinity of ubiquitous factors to the enhancer contributes to its cell-type specific activity. Moreover, we believe that a dramatic increase of transcriptional activity brought about by single point mutations at strategic important factor binding sites may also have relevance to the activation of nuclear oncogenes. Images PMID:1614851

  15. Fine Tuning of CaV1.3 Ca2+ channel properties in adult inner hair cells positioned in the most sensitive region of the Gerbil Cochlea.

    PubMed

    Zampini, Valeria; Johnson, Stuart L; Franz, Christoph; Knipper, Marlies; Holley, Matthew C; Magistretti, Jacopo; Russo, Giancarlo; Marcotti, Walter; Masetto, Sergio

    2014-01-01

    Hearing relies on faithful signal transmission by cochlear inner hair cells (IHCs) onto auditory fibres over a wide frequency and intensity range. Exocytosis at IHC ribbon synapses is triggered by Ca(2+) inflow through Ca(V)1.3 (L-type) Ca(2+) channels. We investigated the macroscopic (whole-cell) and elementary (cell-attached) properties of Ca(2+) currents in IHCs positioned at the middle turn (frequency ∼ 2 kHz) of the adult gerbil cochlea, which is their most sensitive hearing region. Using near physiological recordings conditions (body temperature and a Na(+) based extracellular solution), we found that the macroscopic Ca(2+) current activates and deactivates very rapidly (time constant below 1 ms) and inactivates slowly and only partially. Single-channel recordings showed an elementary conductance of 15 pS, a sub-ms latency to first opening, and a very low steady-state open probability (Po: 0.024 in response to 500-ms depolarizing steps at ∼-18 mV). The value of Po was significantly larger (0.06) in the first 40 ms of membrane depolarization, which corresponds to the time when most Ca(2+) channel openings occurred clustered in bursts (mean burst duration: 19 ms). Both the Po and the mean burst duration were smaller than those previously reported in high-frequency basal IHCs. Finally, we found that middle turn IHCs are likely to express about 4 times more Ca(2+) channels per ribbon than basal cells. We propose that middle-turn IHCs finely-tune Ca(V)1.3 Ca(2+) channel gating in order to provide reliable information upon timing and intensity of lower-frequency sounds.

  16. Fine-tuning of histone H3 Lys4 methylation during pseudohyphal differentiation by the CDK submodule of RNA polymerase II.

    PubMed

    Law, Michael J; Ciccaglione, Kerri

    2015-02-01

    Transcriptional regulation is dependent upon the interactions between the RNA pol II holoenzyme complex and chromatin. RNA pol II is part of a highly conserved multiprotein complex that includes the core mediator and CDK8 subcomplex. In Saccharomyces cerevisiae, the CDK8 subcomplex, composed of Ssn2p, Ssn3p, Ssn8p, and Srb8p, is thought to play important roles in mediating transcriptional control of stress-responsive genes. Also central to transcriptional control are histone post-translational modifications. Lysine methylation, dynamically balanced by lysine methyltransferases and demethylases, has been intensively studied, uncovering significant functions in transcriptional control. A key question remains in understanding how these enzymes are targeted during stress response. To determine the relationship between lysine methylation, the CDK8 complex, and transcriptional control, we performed phenotype analyses of yeast lacking known lysine methyltransferases or demethylases in isolation or in tandem with SSN8 deletions. We show that the RNA pol II CDK8 submodule components SSN8/SSN3 and the histone demethylase JHD2 are required to inhibit pseudohyphal growth-a differentiation pathway induced during nutrient limitation-under rich conditions. Yeast lacking both SSN8 and JHD2 constitutively express FLO11, a major regulator of pseudohyphal growth. Interestingly, deleting known FLO11 activators including FLO8, MSS11, MFG1, TEC1, SNF1, KSS1, and GCN4 results in a range of phenotypic suppression. Using chromatin immunoprecipitation, we found that SSN8 inhibits H3 Lys4 trimethylation independently of JHD2 at the FLO11 locus, suggesting that H3 Lys4 hypermethylation is locking FLO11 into a transcriptionally active state. These studies implicate the CDK8 subcomplex in fine-tuning H3 Lys4 methylation levels during pseudohyphal differentiation. Copyright © 2015 by the Genetics Society of America.

  17. Enhancing signal to noise ratio by fine-tuning tapers of cladded/uncladded buffer rods in ultrasonic time domain reflectometry in smelters.

    PubMed

    Viumdal, Håkon; Mylvaganam, Saba

    2014-03-01

    Buffer rods (BR) as waveguides in ultrasonic time domain reflectometry (TDR) can somewhat extend the range of industrial applications of ultrasonics. Level, temperature and flow measurements involving elevated temperatures, corrosive fluids and generally harsh environments are some of the applications in which conventional ultrasonic transducers cannot be used directly in contact with the media. In such cases, BRs with some design modifications can make ultrasonic TDR measurements possible with limited success. This paper deals with TDR in conjunction with distance measurements in extremely hot fluids, using conventional ultrasonic transducers in combination with BRs. When using BRs in the ultrasonic measurement systems in extreme temperatures, problems associated with size and the material of the buffer, have to be addressed. The resonant frequency of the transducer and the relative size of the transducer with respect to the diameter of BR are also important parameters influencing the signal to noise ratio (SNR) of the signal processing system used in the ultrasonic TDR. This paper gives an overview of design aspects related to the BRs with special emphasis on tapers and cladding used on BRs. As protective cladding, zirconium oxide-yttrium oxide composite was used, with its proven thermal stability in withstanding temperatures in rocket and jet engines up to 1650 °C. In general a BR should guide the signals through to the medium and from and back to the transducer without excessive attenuation and at the same time not exacerbate the noise in the measurement system. The SNR is the decisive performance indicator to consider in the design of BR based ultrasonic TDR, along with appropriate transducer, with suitable size and operating frequency. This work presents and analyses results from extensive experiments related to fine-tuning both geometry of and signals in cladded/uncladded BRs used in high temperature ultrasonic TDR with focus on overall performance based on

  18. Arabidopsis AtHB7 and AtHB12 evolved divergently to fine tune processes associated with growth and responses to water stress.

    PubMed

    Ré, Delfina A; Capella, Matías; Bonaventure, Gustavo; Chan, Raquel L

    2014-05-31

    Arabidopsis AtHB7 and AtHB12 transcription factors (TFs) belong to the homeodomain-leucine zipper subfamily I (HD-Zip I) and present 62% amino acid identity. These TFs have been associated with the control of plant development and abiotic stress responses; however, at present it is not completely understood how AtHB7 and AtHB12 regulate these processes. By using different expression analysis approaches, we found that AtHB12 is expressed at higher levels during early Arabidopsis thaliana development whereas AtHB7 during later developmental stages. Moreover, by analysing gene expression in single and double Arabidopsis mutants and in transgenic plants ectopically expressing these TFs, we discovered a complex mechanism dependent on the plant developmental stage and in which AtHB7 and AtHB12 affect the expression of each other. Phenotypic analysis of transgenic plants revealed that AtHB12 induces root elongation and leaf development in young plants under standard growth conditions, and seed production in water-stressed plants. In contrast, AtHB7 promotes leaf development, chlorophyll levels and photosynthesis and reduces stomatal conductance in mature plants. Moreover AtHB7 delays senescence processes in standard growth conditions. We demonstrate that AtHB7 and AtHB12 have overlapping yet specific roles in several processes related to development and water stress responses. The analysis of mutant and transgenic plants indicated that the expression of AtHB7 and AtHB12 is regulated in a coordinated manner, depending on the plant developmental stage and the environmental conditions. The results suggested that AtHB7 and AtHB12 evolved divergently to fine tune processes associated with development and responses to mild water stress.

  19. Arabidopsis AtHB7 and AtHB12 evolved divergently to fine tune processes associated with growth and responses to water stress

    PubMed Central

    2014-01-01

    Background Arabidopsis AtHB7 and AtHB12 transcription factors (TFs) belong to the homeodomain-leucine zipper subfamily I (HD-Zip I) and present 62% amino acid identity. These TFs have been associated with the control of plant development and abiotic stress responses; however, at present it is not completely understood how AtHB7 and AtHB12 regulate these processes. Results By using different expression analysis approaches, we found that AtHB12 is expressed at higher levels during early Arabidopsis thaliana development whereas AtHB7 during later developmental stages. Moreover, by analysing gene expression in single and double Arabidopsis mutants and in transgenic plants ectopically expressing these TFs, we discovered a complex mechanism dependent on the plant developmental stage and in which AtHB7 and AtHB12 affect the expression of each other. Phenotypic analysis of transgenic plants revealed that AtHB12 induces root elongation and leaf development in young plants under standard growth conditions, and seed production in water-stressed plants. In contrast, AtHB7 promotes leaf development, chlorophyll levels and photosynthesis and reduces stomatal conductance in mature plants. Moreover AtHB7 delays senescence processes in standard growth conditions. Conclusions We demonstrate that AtHB7 and AtHB12 have overlapping yet specific roles in several processes related to development and water stress responses. The analysis of mutant and transgenic plants indicated that the expression of AtHB7 and AtHB12 is regulated in a coordinated manner, depending on the plant developmental stage and the environmental conditions. The results suggested that AtHB7 and AtHB12 evolved divergently to fine tune processes associated with development and responses to mild water stress. PMID:24884528

  20. Fine Tuning of CaV1.3 Ca2+ Channel Properties in Adult Inner Hair Cells Positioned in the Most Sensitive Region of the Gerbil Cochlea

    PubMed Central

    Zampini, Valeria; Johnson, Stuart L.; Franz, Christoph; Knipper, Marlies; Holley, Matthew C.; Magistretti, Jacopo; Russo, Giancarlo; Marcotti, Walter; Masetto, Sergio

    2014-01-01

    Hearing relies on faithful signal transmission by cochlear inner hair cells (IHCs) onto auditory fibres over a wide frequency and intensity range. Exocytosis at IHC ribbon synapses is triggered by Ca2+ inflow through CaV1.3 (L-type) Ca2+ channels. We investigated the macroscopic (whole-cell) and elementary (cell-attached) properties of Ca2+ currents in IHCs positioned at the middle turn (frequency ∼2 kHz) of the adult gerbil cochlea, which is their most sensitive hearing region. Using near physiological recordings conditions (body temperature and a Na+ based extracellular solution), we found that the macroscopic Ca2+ current activates and deactivates very rapidly (time constant below 1 ms) and inactivates slowly and only partially. Single-channel recordings showed an elementary conductance of 15 pS, a sub-ms latency to first opening, and a very low steady-state open probability (Po: 0.024 in response to 500-ms depolarizing steps at ∼−18 mV). The value of Po was significantly larger (0.06) in the first 40 ms of membrane depolarization, which corresponds to the time when most Ca2+ channel openings occurred clustered in bursts (mean burst duration: 19 ms). Both the Po and the mean burst duration were smaller than those previously reported in high-frequency basal IHCs. Finally, we found that middle turn IHCs are likely to express about 4 times more Ca2+ channels per ribbon than basal cells. We propose that middle-turn IHCs finely-tune CaV1.3 Ca2+ channel gating in order to provide reliable information upon timing and intensity of lower-frequency sounds. PMID:25409445

  1. Surface charge fine tuning of reversed-phase/weak anion-exchange type mixed-mode stationary phases for milder elution conditions.

    PubMed

    Zimmermann, Aleksandra; Horak, Jeannie; Sánchez-Muñoz, Orlando L; Lämmerhofer, Michael

    2015-08-28

    A series of new mixed-mode reversed-phase/weak anion-exchange (RP/WAX) phases have been synthesized by immobilization of N-undecenyl-3-α-aminotropane onto thiol-modified silica gel by thiol-ene click chemistry and subsequent introduction of acidic thiol-endcapping functionalities of different type and surface densities. Click chemistry allowed to adjust a controlled surface concentration of the RP/WAX ligand in such a way that a sufficient quantity of residual thiols remained unmodified which have been capped by thiol click with either 3-butenoic acid or allylsulfonic acid as co-ligands. In another embodiment, performic acid oxidation of N-undecenyl-3-α-aminotropane-derivatized thiol-modified silica gave a RP/WAX phase with high density of sulfonic acid end-capping groups. ζ-Potential determinations confirmed the fine-tuned pI of these mixed-mode stationary phases which was shifted from 9.5 to 8.2, 7.8, and 6.5 with 3-butenoic acid and allylsulfonic acid end-capping as well as performic acid oxidation. For acidic solutes, the co-ionic endcapping leads to strongly reduced retention times and clearly allowed elution of these analytes under lower ionic strength thus milder elution conditions. In spite of the acidic endcapping, the new mixed-mode phases maintained their hydrophobic and anion-exchange selectivity as well as their multimodal nature featuring RP and HILIC elution domains at acetonitrile percentages below and above 50%, respectively. Column classification by principal component analysis of an extended retention map in comparison to a set of polar commercial and in-house synthesized stationary phases confirmed complementarity of the new mixed-mode phases with respect to HILIC, polar RP, amino and commercial mixed-mode phases.

  2. Molecular energies from an incremental fragmentation method

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Meitei, Oinam Romesh; Heßelmann, Andreas

    2016-02-01

    The systematic molecular fragmentation method by Collins and Deev [J. Chem. Phys. 125, 104104 (2006)] has been used to calculate total energies and relative conformational energies for a number of small and extended molecular systems. In contrast to the original approach by Collins, we have tested the accuracy of the fragmentation method by utilising an incremental scheme in which the energies at the lowest level of the fragmentation are calculated on an accurate quantum chemistry level while lower-cost methods are used to correct the low-level energies through a high-level fragmentation. In this work, the fragment energies at the lowest level of fragmentation were calculated using the random-phase approximation (RPA) and two recently developed extensions to the RPA while the incremental corrections at higher levels of the fragmentation were calculated using standard density functional theory (DFT) methods. The complete incremental fragmentation method has been shown to reproduce the supermolecule results with a very good accuracy, almost independent on the molecular type, size, or type of decomposition. The fragmentation method has also been used in conjunction with the DFT-SAPT (symmetry-adapted perturbation theory) method which enables a breakdown of the total nonbonding energy contributions into individual interaction energy terms. Finally, the potential problems of the method connected with the use of capping hydrogen atoms are analysed and two possible solutions are supplied.

  3. Molecular energies from an incremental fragmentation method.

    PubMed

    Meitei, Oinam Romesh; Heßelmann, Andreas

    2016-02-28

    The systematic molecular fragmentation method by Collins and Deev [J. Chem. Phys. 125, 104104 (2006)] has been used to calculate total energies and relative conformational energies for a number of small and extended molecular systems. In contrast to the original approach by Collins, we have tested the accuracy of the fragmentation method by utilising an incremental scheme in which the energies at the lowest level of the fragmentation are calculated on an accurate quantum chemistry level while lower-cost methods are used to correct the low-level energies through a high-level fragmentation. In this work, the fragment energies at the lowest level of fragmentation were calculated using the random-phase approximation (RPA) and two recently developed extensions to the RPA while the incremental corrections at higher levels of the fragmentation were calculated using standard density functional theory (DFT) methods. The complete incremental fragmentation method has been shown to reproduce the supermolecule results with a very good accuracy, almost independent on the molecular type, size, or type of decomposition. The fragmentation method has also been used in conjunction with the DFT-SAPT (symmetry-adapted perturbation theory) method which enables a breakdown of the total nonbonding energy contributions into individual interaction energy terms. Finally, the potential problems of the method connected with the use of capping hydrogen atoms are analysed and two possible solutions are supplied.

  4. Vibrational energy transfer in shocked molecular crystals.

    PubMed

    Hooper, Joe

    2010-01-07

    We consider the process of establishing thermal equilibrium behind an ideal shock front in molecular crystals and its possible role in initiating chemical reaction at high shock pressures. A new theory of equilibration via multiphonon energy transfer is developed to treat the scattering of shock-induced phonons into internal molecular vibrations. Simple analytic forms are derived for the change in this energy transfer at different Hugoniot end states following shock compression. The total time required for thermal equilibration is found to be an order of magnitude or faster than proposed in previous work; in materials representative of explosive molecular crystals, equilibration is predicted to occur within a few picoseconds following the passage of an ideal shock wave. Recent molecular dynamics calculations are consistent with these time scales. The possibility of defect-induced temperature localization due purely to nonequilibrium phonon processes is studied by means of a simple model of the strain field around an inhomogeneity. The specific case of immobile straight dislocations is studied, and a region of enhanced energy transfer on the order of 5 nm is found. Due to the rapid establishment of thermal equilibrium, these regions are unrelated to the shock sensitivity of a material but may allow temperature localization at high shock pressures. Results also suggest that if any decomposition due to molecular collisions is occurring within the shock front itself, these collisions are not enhanced by any nonequilibrium thermal state.

  5. Molecular Motion and Energy Migration in Polymers.

    DTIC Science & Technology

    1984-12-01

    RD-RIO? 371 MOLECULAR NOTION AND ENERGY MIGRATION IN POLYMERS(U) 1/1 ROYAL INSTITUTION OF GREAT BRITAIN LONDON ( ENGLAND ) D PHILLIPS DEC 94 DRJR37-92...as well. Of course, the extent to which these YH-excitons are localised is not known; probably over 6-7 repeat units . (Fig. 2 sumarises the

  6. Development of Molecular Electrocatalysts for Energy Storage

    SciTech Connect

    DuBois, Daniel L.

    2014-02-20

    Molecular electrocatalysts can play an important role in energy storage and utilization reactions needed for intermittent renewable energy sources. This manuscript describes three general themes that our laboratories have found useful in the development of molecular electrocatalysts for reduction of CO2 to CO and for H2 oxidation and production. The first theme involves a conceptual partitioning of catalysts into first, second, and outer coordination spheres. This is illustrated with the design of electrocatalysts for CO2 reduction to CO using first and second coordination spheres and for H2 production catalysts using all three coordination spheres. The second theme focuses on the development of thermodynamic models that can be used to design catalysts to avoid high energy and low energy intermediates. In this research, new approaches to the measurement of thermodynamic hydride donor and acceptor abilities of transition metal complexes were developed. Combining this information with other thermodynamic information such as pKa values and redox potentials led to more complete thermodynamic descriptions of transition metal hydride, dihydride, and related species. Relationships extracted from this information were then used to develop models that are powerful tools for predicting and understanding the relative free energies of intermediates in catalytic reactions. The third theme is the control of proton movement during electrochemical fuel generation and utilization reactions. This research involves the incorporation of pendant amines in the second coordination sphere that can facilitate H-H bond heterolysis and heteroformation, intramolecular and intermolecular proton transfer steps, and the coupling of proton and electron transfer steps. Studies also indicate an important role for outer coordination sphere in the delivery of protons to the second coordination sphere. Understanding these proton transfer reactions and their

  7. Molecularly Engineered Energy Materials, an Energy Frontier Research Center

    SciTech Connect

    Ozolins, Vidvuds

    2016-09-28

    Molecularly Engineered Energy Materials (MEEM) was established as an interdisciplinary cutting-edge UCLA-based research center uniquely equipped to attack the challenge of rationally designing, synthesizing and testing revolutionary new energy materials. Our mission was to achieve transformational improvements in the performance of materials via controlling the nano-and mesoscale structure using selectively designed, earth-abundant, inexpensive molecular building blocks. MEEM has focused on materials that are inherently abundant, can be easily assembled from intelligently designed building blocks (molecules, nanoparticles), and have the potential to deliver transformative economic benefits in comparison with the current crystalline-and polycrystalline-based energy technologies. MEEM addressed basic science issues related to the fundamental mechanisms of carrier generation, energy conversion, as well as transport and storage of charge and mass in tunable, architectonically complex materials. Fundamental understanding of these processes will enable rational design, efficient synthesis and effective deployment of novel three-dimensional material architectures for energy applications. Three interrelated research directions were initially identified where these novel architectures hold great promise for high-reward research: solar energy generation, electrochemical energy storage, and materials for CO2 capture. Of these, the first two remained throughout the project performance period, while carbon capture was been phased out in consultation and with approval from BES program manager.

  8. Inadequate fine-tuning of protein synthesis and failure of amino acid homeostasis following inhibition of the ATPase VCP/p97

    PubMed Central

    Parzych, K; Chinn, T M; Chen, Z; Loaiza, S; Porsch, F; Valbuena, G N; Kleijnen, M F; Karadimitris, A; Gentleman, E; Keun, H C; Auner, H W

    2015-01-01

    The cellular mechanisms that control protein degradation may constitute a non-oncogenic cancer cell vulnerability and, therefore, a therapeutic target. Although this proposition is supported by the clinical success of proteasome inhibitors in some malignancies, most cancers are resistant to proteasome inhibition. The ATPase valosin-containing protein (VCP; p97) is an essential regulator of protein degradation in multiple pathways and has emerged as a target for cancer therapy. We found that pharmacological depletion of VCP enzymatic activity with mechanistically different inhibitors robustly induced proteotoxic stress in solid cancer and multiple myeloma cells, including cells that were insensitive, adapted, or clinically resistant to proteasome inhibition. VCP inhibition had an impact on two key regulators of protein synthesis, eukaryotic initiation factor 2α (eIF2α) and mechanistic target of rapamycin complex 1 (mTORC1), and attenuated global protein synthesis. However, a block on protein translation that was itself cytotoxic alleviated stress signaling and reduced cell death triggered by VCP inhibition. Some of the proteotoxic effects of VCP depletion depended on the eIF2α phosphatase, protein phosphatase 1 regulatory subunit 15A (PPP1R15A)/PP1c, but not on mTORC1, although there appeared to be cross-talk between them. Thus, cancer cell death following VCP inhibition was linked to inadequate fine-tuning of protein synthesis and activity of PPP1R15A/PP1c. VCP inhibitors also perturbed intracellular amino acid levels, activated eukaryotic translation initiation factor 2α kinase 4 (EIF2AK4), and enhanced cellular dependence on amino acid supplies, consistent with a failure of amino acid homeostasis. Many of the observed effects of VCP inhibition differed from the effects triggered by proteasome inhibition or by protein misfolding. Thus, depletion of VCP enzymatic activity triggers cancer cell death in part through inadequate regulation of protein synthesis and

  9. Modulation of the Substitution Pattern of 5-Aryl-2-Aminoimidazoles Allows Fine-Tuning of Their Antibiofilm Activity Spectrum and Toxicity

    PubMed Central

    Peeters, Elien; Hooyberghs, Geert; Robijns, Stijn; Waldrant, Kai; De Weerdt, Ami; Delattin, Nicolas; Liebens, Veerle; Kucharíková, Soňa; Tournu, Hélène; Verstraeten, Natalie; Dovgan, Barbara; Girandon, Lenart; Fröhlich, Mirjam; De Brucker, Katrijn; Michiels, Jan; Cammue, Bruno P. A.; Thevissen, Karin; Vanderleyden, Jozef; Van der Eycken, Erik

    2016-01-01

    We previously synthesized several series of compounds, based on the 5-aryl-2-aminoimidazole scaffold, that showed activity preventing the formation of Salmonella enterica serovar Typhimurium and Pseudomonas aeruginosa biofilms. Here, we further studied the activity spectrum of a number of the most active N1- and 2N-substituted 5-aryl-2-aminoimidazoles against a broad panel of biofilms formed by monospecies and mixed species of bacteria and fungi. An N1-substituted compound showed very strong activity against the biofilms formed by Gram-negative and Gram-positive bacteria and the fungus Candida albicans but was previously shown to be toxic against various eukaryotic cell lines. In contrast, 2N-substituted compounds were nontoxic and active against biofilms formed by Gram-negative bacteria and C. albicans but had reduced activity against biofilms formed by Gram-positive bacteria. In an attempt to develop nontoxic compounds with potent activity against biofilms formed by Gram-positive bacteria for application in antibiofilm coatings for medical implants, we synthesized novel compounds with substituents at both the N1 and 2N positions and tested these compounds for antibiofilm activity and toxicity. Interestingly, most of these N1-,2N-disubstituted 5-aryl-2-aminoimidazoles showed very strong activity against biofilms formed by Gram-positive bacteria and C. albicans in various setups with biofilms formed by monospecies and mixed species but lost activity against biofilms formed by Gram-negative bacteria. In light of application of these compounds as anti-infective coatings on orthopedic implants, toxicity against two bone cell lines and the functionality of these cells were tested. The N1-,2N-disubstituted 5-aryl-2-aminoimidazoles in general did not affect the viability of bone cells and even induced calcium deposition. This indicates that modulating the substitution pattern on positions N1 and 2N of the 5-aryl-2-aminoimidazole scaffold allows fine-tuning of both the

  10. Codon optimization of xylA gene for recombinant glucose isomerase production in Pichia pastoris and fed-batch feeding strategies to fine-tune bioreactor performance.

    PubMed

    Ata, Özge; Boy, Erdem; Güneş, Hande; Çalık, Pınar

    2015-05-01

    The objectives of this work are the optimization of the codons of xylA gene from Thermus thermophilus to enhance the production of recombinant glucose isomerase (rGI) in P. pastoris and to investigate the effects of feeding strategies on rGI production. Codons of xylA gene from T. thermophilus were optimized, ca. 30 % of the codons were replaced with those with higher frequencies according to the codon usage bias of P. pastoris, codon optimization resulted in a 2.4-fold higher rGI activity. To fine-tune bioreactor performance, fed-batch bioreactor feeding strategies were designed as continuous exponential methanol feeding with pre-calculated feeding rate based on the pre-determined specific growth rate, and fed-batch methanol-stat feeding. Six feeding strategies were designed, as follows: (S1) continuous exponential methanol- and pulse- sorbitol feeding; (S2) continuous exponential methanol- and peptone- feeding; (S3) continuous exponential methanol- and pulse- mannitol feeding; (S4) continuous exponential methanol- and peptone- feeding and pulse-mannitol feeding; (S5) methanol-stat feeding by keeping methanol concentration at 5 g L(-1); and, (S6) methanol-stat feeding by keeping methanol concentration at 5 g L(-1) and pulse-mannitol feeding. The highest cell and rGI activity was attained as 117 g L(-1) at t = 66 h and 32530 U L(-1) at t = 53 h, in strategy-S5. The use of the co-substrate mannitol does not increase the rGI activity in methanol-stat feeding, where 4.1-fold lower rGI activity was obtained in strategy-S6. The overall cell yield on total substrate was determined at t = 53 h as 0.21 g g(-1) in S5 strategy.

  11. Modulation of the Substitution Pattern of 5-Aryl-2-Aminoimidazoles Allows Fine-Tuning of Their Antibiofilm Activity Spectrum and Toxicity.

    PubMed

    Peeters, Elien; Hooyberghs, Geert; Robijns, Stijn; Waldrant, Kai; De Weerdt, Ami; Delattin, Nicolas; Liebens, Veerle; Kucharíková, Soňa; Tournu, Hélène; Verstraeten, Natalie; Dovgan, Barbara; Girandon, Lenart; Fröhlich, Mirjam; De Brucker, Katrijn; Van Dijck, Patrick; Michiels, Jan; Cammue, Bruno P A; Thevissen, Karin; Vanderleyden, Jozef; Van der Eycken, Erik; Steenackers, Hans P

    2016-11-01

    We previously synthesized several series of compounds, based on the 5-aryl-2-aminoimidazole scaffold, that showed activity preventing the formation of Salmonella enterica serovar Typhimurium and Pseudomonas aeruginosa biofilms. Here, we further studied the activity spectrum of a number of the most active N1- and 2N-substituted 5-aryl-2-aminoimidazoles against a broad panel of biofilms formed by monospecies and mixed species of bacteria and fungi. An N1-substituted compound showed very strong activity against the biofilms formed by Gram-negative and Gram-positive bacteria and the fungus Candida albicans but was previously shown to be toxic against various eukaryotic cell lines. In contrast, 2N-substituted compounds were nontoxic and active against biofilms formed by Gram-negative bacteria and C. albicans but had reduced activity against biofilms formed by Gram-positive bacteria. In an attempt to develop nontoxic compounds with potent activity against biofilms formed by Gram-positive bacteria for application in antibiofilm coatings for medical implants, we synthesized novel compounds with substituents at both the N1 and 2N positions and tested these compounds for antibiofilm activity and toxicity. Interestingly, most of these N1-,2N-disubstituted 5-aryl-2-aminoimidazoles showed very strong activity against biofilms formed by Gram-positive bacteria and C. albicans in various setups with biofilms formed by monospecies and mixed species but lost activity against biofilms formed by Gram-negative bacteria. In light of application of these compounds as anti-infective coatings on orthopedic implants, toxicity against two bone cell lines and the functionality of these cells were tested. The N1-,2N-disubstituted 5-aryl-2-aminoimidazoles in general did not affect the viability of bone cells and even induced calcium deposition. This indicates that modulating the substitution pattern on positions N1 and 2N of the 5-aryl-2-aminoimidazole scaffold allows fine-tuning of both the

  12. Inadequate fine-tuning of protein synthesis and failure of amino acid homeostasis following inhibition of the ATPase VCP/p97.

    PubMed

    Parzych, K; Chinn, T M; Chen, Z; Loaiza, S; Porsch, F; Valbuena, G N; Kleijnen, M F; Karadimitris, A; Gentleman, E; Keun, H C; Auner, H W

    2015-12-31

    The cellular mechanisms that control protein degradation may constitute a non-oncogenic cancer cell vulnerability and, therefore, a therapeutic target. Although this proposition is supported by the clinical success of proteasome inhibitors in some malignancies, most cancers are resistant to proteasome inhibition. The ATPase valosin-containing protein (VCP; p97) is an essential regulator of protein degradation in multiple pathways and has emerged as a target for cancer therapy. We found that pharmacological depletion of VCP enzymatic activity with mechanistically different inhibitors robustly induced proteotoxic stress in solid cancer and multiple myeloma cells, including cells that were insensitive, adapted, or clinically resistant to proteasome inhibition. VCP inhibition had an impact on two key regulators of protein synthesis, eukaryotic initiation factor 2α (eIF2α) and mechanistic target of rapamycin complex 1 (mTORC1), and attenuated global protein synthesis. However, a block on protein translation that was itself cytotoxic alleviated stress signaling and reduced cell death triggered by VCP inhibition. Some of the proteotoxic effects of VCP depletion depended on the eIF2α phosphatase, protein phosphatase 1 regulatory subunit 15A (PPP1R15A)/PP1c, but not on mTORC1, although there appeared to be cross-talk between them. Thus, cancer cell death following VCP inhibition was linked to inadequate fine-tuning of protein synthesis and activity of PPP1R15A/PP1c. VCP inhibitors also perturbed intracellular amino acid levels, activated eukaryotic translation initiation factor 2α kinase 4 (EIF2AK4), and enhanced cellular dependence on amino acid supplies, consistent with a failure of amino acid homeostasis. Many of the observed effects of VCP inhibition differed from the effects triggered by proteasome inhibition or by protein misfolding. Thus, depletion of VCP enzymatic activity triggers cancer cell death in part through inadequate regulation of protein synthesis and

  13. Functional Characterization of MODY2 Mutations Highlights the Importance of the Fine-Tuning of Glucokinase and Its Role in Glucose Sensing

    PubMed Central

    García-Herrero, Carmen-María; Rubio-Cabezas, Oscar; Azriel, Sharona; Gutierrez-Nogués, Angel; Aragonés, Angel; Vincent, Olivier; Campos-Barros, Angel; Argente, Jesús; Navas, María-Angeles

    2012-01-01

    Glucokinase (GK) acts as a glucose sensor in the pancreatic beta-cell and regulates insulin secretion. Heterozygous mutations in the human GK-encoding GCK gene that reduce the activity index increase the glucose-stimulated insulin secretion threshold and cause familial, mild fasting hyperglycaemia, also known as Maturity Onset Diabetes of the Young type 2 (MODY2). Here we describe the biochemical characterization of five missense GK mutations: p.Ile130Thr, p.Asp205His, p.Gly223Ser, p.His416Arg and p.Ala449Thr. The enzymatic analysis of the corresponding bacterially expressed GST-GK mutant proteins show that all of them impair the kinetic characteristics of the enzyme. In keeping with their position within the protein, mutations p.Ile130Thr, p.Asp205His, p.Gly223Ser, and p.His416Arg strongly decrease the activity index of GK, affecting to one or more kinetic parameters. In contrast, the p.Ala449Thr mutation, which is located in the allosteric activator site, does not affect significantly the activity index of GK, but dramatically modifies the main kinetic parameters responsible for the function of this enzyme as a glucose sensor. The reduced Kcat of the mutant (3.21±0.28 s−1 vs 47.86±2.78 s−1) is balanced by an increased glucose affinity (S0.5 = 1.33±0.08 mM vs 7.86±0.09 mM) and loss of cooperativity for this substrate. We further studied the mechanism by which this mutation impaired GK kinetics by measuring the differential effects of several competitive inhibitors and one allosteric activator on the mutant protein. Our results suggest that this mutation alters the equilibrium between the conformational states of glucokinase and highlights the importance of the fine-tuning of GK and its role in glucose sensing. PMID:22291974

  14. Gene expression analyses in tomato near isogenic lines provide evidence for ethylene and abscisic acid biosynthesis fine-tuning during arbuscular mycorrhiza development.

    PubMed

    Fracetto, Giselle Gomes Monteiro; Peres, Lázaro Eustáquio Pereira; Lambais, Marcio Rodrigues

    2017-07-01

    colonization in tomato roots, indicating that, besides hormonal interactions, a fine-tuning of each hormone level is required for AM development.

  15. Learning molecular energies using localized graph kernels.

    PubMed

    Ferré, Grégoire; Haut, Terry; Barros, Kipton

    2017-03-21

    Recent machine learning methods make it possible to model potential energy of atomic configurations with chemical-level accuracy (as calculated from ab initio calculations) and at speeds suitable for molecular dynamics simulation. Best performance is achieved when the known physical constraints are encoded in the machine learning models. For example, the atomic energy is invariant under global translations and rotations; it is also invariant to permutations of same-species atoms. Although simple to state, these symmetries are complicated to encode into machine learning algorithms. In this paper, we present a machine learning approach based on graph theory that naturally incorporates translation, rotation, and permutation symmetries. Specifically, we use a random walk graph kernel to measure the similarity of two adjacency matrices, each of which represents a local atomic environment. This Graph Approximated Energy (GRAPE) approach is flexible and admits many possible extensions. We benchmark a simple version of GRAPE by predicting atomization energies on a standard dataset of organic molecules.

  16. Learning molecular energies using localized graph kernels

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ferré, Grégoire; Haut, Terry; Barros, Kipton

    2017-03-01

    Recent machine learning methods make it possible to model potential energy of atomic configurations with chemical-level accuracy (as calculated from ab initio calculations) and at speeds suitable for molecular dynamics simulation. Best performance is achieved when the known physical constraints are encoded in the machine learning models. For example, the atomic energy is invariant under global translations and rotations; it is also invariant to permutations of same-species atoms. Although simple to state, these symmetries are complicated to encode into machine learning algorithms. In this paper, we present a machine learning approach based on graph theory that naturally incorporates translation, rotation, and permutation symmetries. Specifically, we use a random walk graph kernel to measure the similarity of two adjacency matrices, each of which represents a local atomic environment. This Graph Approximated Energy (GRAPE) approach is flexible and admits many possible extensions. We benchmark a simple version of GRAPE by predicting atomization energies on a standard dataset of organic molecules.

  17. Development of molecular electrocatalysts for energy storage.

    PubMed

    DuBois, Daniel L

    2014-04-21

    Molecular electrocatalysts can play an important role in energy storage and utilization reactions needed for intermittent renewable energy sources. This manuscript describes three general themes that our laboratories have found useful in the development of molecular electrocatalysts for reduction of CO2 to CO and for H2 oxidation and production. The first theme involves a conceptual partitioning of catalysts into first, second, and outer coordination spheres. This is illustrated with the design of electrocatalysts for CO2 reduction to CO using first and second coordination spheres and for H2 production catalysts using all three coordination spheres. The second theme focuses on the development of thermodynamic models that can be used to design catalysts to avoid high- and low-energy intermediates. In this research, new approaches to the measurement of thermodynamic hydride donor and acceptor abilities of transition-metal complexes were developed. Combining this information with other thermodynamic information such as pKa values and redox potentials led to more complete thermodynamic descriptions of transition-metal hydride, dihydride, and related species. Relationships extracted from this information were then used to develop models that are powerful tools for predicting and understanding the relative free energies of intermediates in catalytic reactions. The third theme is control of proton movement during electrochemical fuel generation and utilization reactions. This research involves the incorporation of pendant amines in the second coordination sphere that can facilitate H-H bond heterolysis and heteroformation, intra- and intermolecular proton-transfer steps, and coupling of proton- and electron-transfer steps. Studies also indicate an important role for the outer coordination sphere in the delivery of protons to the second coordination sphere. Understanding these proton-transfer reactions and their associated energy barriers is key to the design of faster and

  18. Fine-tuning of age integrating magnetostratigraphy, radiocarbon dating, and carbonate cyclicity: Example of lacustrine sediments from Heqing basin (Yunnan, China) covering the past 1 Myr

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hu, Shouyun; Goddu, Srinivasa Rao; Appel, Erwin; Verosub, Ken

    2007-05-01

    convincing Milankovitch spectrum of whole-core carbonate data. The Fourier spectra of whole-core carbonate and susceptibility time series calibrated by the optimum age model show clear Milankovitch cyclicities (95, 41, 23, and 19 kyr) indicating that a global palaeoclimatic signal is recorded. According to this result the Heqing core spans almost the complete past 1 Myr (5-1001 ka). Detailed depth-to-age conversion is listed. The optimum age model can be used as a fine-tuned time basis for interpreting the existing data set of palaeoclimatic proxies which have been already measured for this sequence.

  19. Scalable Quantum Simulation of Molecular Energies

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    O'Malley, P. J. J.; Babbush, R.; Kivlichan, I. D.; Romero, J.; McClean, J. R.; Barends, R.; Kelly, J.; Roushan, P.; Tranter, A.; Ding, N.; Campbell, B.; Chen, Y.; Chen, Z.; Chiaro, B.; Dunsworth, A.; Fowler, A. G.; Jeffrey, E.; Lucero, E.; Megrant, A.; Mutus, J. Y.; Neeley, M.; Neill, C.; Quintana, C.; Sank, D.; Vainsencher, A.; Wenner, J.; White, T. C.; Coveney, P. V.; Love, P. J.; Neven, H.; Aspuru-Guzik, A.; Martinis, J. M.

    2016-07-01

    We report the first electronic structure calculation performed on a quantum computer without exponentially costly precompilation. We use a programmable array of superconducting qubits to compute the energy surface of molecular hydrogen using two distinct quantum algorithms. First, we experimentally execute the unitary coupled cluster method using the variational quantum eigensolver. Our efficient implementation predicts the correct dissociation energy to within chemical accuracy of the numerically exact result. Second, we experimentally demonstrate the canonical quantum algorithm for chemistry, which consists of Trotterization and quantum phase estimation. We compare the experimental performance of these approaches to show clear evidence that the variational quantum eigensolver is robust to certain errors. This error tolerance inspires hope that variational quantum simulations of classically intractable molecules may be viable in the near future.

  20. Learning molecular energies using localized graph kernels

    DOE PAGES

    Ferré, Grégoire; Haut, Terry Scot; Barros, Kipton Marcos

    2017-03-21

    We report that recent machine learning methods make it possible to model potential energy of atomic configurations with chemical-level accuracy (as calculated from ab initio calculations) and at speeds suitable for molecular dynamics simulation. Best performance is achieved when the known physical constraints are encoded in the machine learning models. For example, the atomic energy is invariant under global translations and rotations; it is also invariant to permutations of same-species atoms. Although simple to state, these symmetries are complicated to encode into machine learning algorithms. In this paper, we present a machine learning approach based on graph theory that naturallymore » incorporates translation, rotation, and permutation symmetries. Specifically, we use a random walk graph kernel to measure the similarity of two adjacency matrices, each of which represents a local atomic environment. This Graph Approximated Energy (GRAPE) approach is flexible and admits many possible extensions. Finally, we benchmark a simple version of GRAPE by predicting atomization energies on a standard dataset of organic molecules.« less

  1. Molecular Mechanisms of Taste Recognition: Considerations about the Role of Saliva

    PubMed Central

    Fábián, Tibor Károly; Beck, Anita; Fejérdy, Pál; Hermann, Péter; Fábián, Gábor

    2015-01-01

    The gustatory system plays a critical role in determining food preferences and food intake, in addition to nutritive, energy and electrolyte balance. Fine tuning of the gustatory system is also crucial in this respect. The exact mechanisms that fine tune taste sensitivity are as of yet poorly defined, but it is clear that various effects of saliva on taste recognition are also involved. Specifically those metabolic polypeptides present in the saliva that were classically considered to be gut and appetite hormones (i.e., leptin, ghrelin, insulin, neuropeptide Y, peptide YY) were considered to play a pivotal role. Besides these, data clearly indicate the major role of several other salivary proteins, such as salivary carbonic anhydrase (gustin), proline-rich proteins, cystatins, alpha-amylases, histatins, salivary albumin and mucins. Other proteins like glucagon-like peptide-1, salivary immunoglobulin-A, zinc-α-2-glycoprotein, salivary lactoperoxidase, salivary prolactin-inducible protein and salivary molecular chaperone HSP70/HSPAs were also expected to play an important role. Furthermore, factors including salivary flow rate, buffer capacity and ionic composition of saliva should also be considered. In this paper, the current state of research related to the above and the overall emerging field of taste-related salivary research alongside basic principles of taste perception is reviewed. PMID:25782158

  2. Energy transformation in molecular electronic systems

    SciTech Connect

    Kasha, M.

    1985-07-25

    Our new optical pumping spectroscopy (steady state, and double-laser pulse) allows the production and study of the unstable rare tautomer in its ground and excited states, including picosecond dynamic studies. Molecules under study here included 7-azaindole (model for biological purines), 3-hydroxyflavone (model for plant flavones), lumichrome, and other heterocyclics. New detailed molecular mechanisms for proton transfer are derived, especially with catalytic assisting molecules. A new proton-transfer laser of extraordinary efficiency has become a side dividend, possibly worth of industrial development. The excited and highly reactive singlet molecular oxygen species /sup 1/..delta../sub g/) has proven to be ubiquitous in chemical peroxide systems and in physically excited sensitizer-oxygen systems. Hyperbaric oxygen mechanisms in biology probably involve singlet oxygen. We have undertaken a spectroscopic study of tris - dibenzoylmethane chelates of Al, Gd, Eu, and Yb trivalent ions. These chelates offer a variety of electronic behaviors, from Z-effects on ..pi..-electron spin-orbital coupling (Al, Gd) to Weissman intramolecular energy transfer to 4f mestable levels (Eu, Gd). Elegant new spectroscopic resolution at 77K permits separation of tautomeric, parasitic self-absorption, dissociation, and cage effects to be resolved. 18 refs., 4 figs.

  3. Energy transformation in molecular electronic systems

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kasha, M.

    1985-07-01

    Our new optical pumping spectroscopy allows the production and study of the unstable rate tautomer in its ground and excited states, including picosecond dynamic studies. Molecules under study here included 7-azaindole 3-hydroxyflavone, lumichrome, and other heterocyclics. New detailed molecular mechanisms for proton transfer are derived, especially with catalytic assisting molecules. A new proton-transfer laser of extraordinary efficiency has become a side dividend, possibly worthy of industrial development. The excited and highly reactive singlet molecular oxygen species (1) DELTA sub g has proven to be ubiquitous in chemical peroxide systems and in physically excited sensitizer-oxygen systems. Hyperbaric oxygen mechanisms in biology probably involve singlet oxygen. We have undertaken a spectroscopic study of trisdibenzoylmethane chelates of Al, Gd, Eu, and Yb trivalent ions. These chelates offer a variety of electronic behaviors, from Z-effects on (PI)--electron spin-orbital coupling (Al, Gd) to Weissman intramolecular energy transfer to 4f mestable levels (Eu, Gd). Elegant new spectroscopic resolution at 77K permits separation of tautomeric, parasitic self-absorption, dissociation, and cage effects to be resolved.

  4. Metal-organic Frameworks as A Tunable Platform for Designing Functional Molecular Materials

    PubMed Central

    Wang, Cheng; Liu, Demin

    2013-01-01

    Metal-organic frameworks (MOFs), also known as coordination polymers, represent an interesting class of crystalline molecular materials that are synthesized by combining metal-connecting points and bridging ligands. The modular nature of and mild conditions for MOF synthesis have permitted the rational structural design of numerous MOFs and the incorporation of various functionalities via constituent building blocks. The resulting designer MOFs have shown promise for applications in a number of areas, including gas storage/separation, nonlinear optics/ferroelectricity, catalysis, energy conversion/storage, chemical sensing, biomedical imaging, and drug delivery. The structure-property relationships of MOFs can also be readily established by taking advantage of the knowledge of their detailed atomic structures, which enables fine-tuning of their functionalities for desired applications. Through the combination of molecular synthesis and crystal engineering MOFs thus present an unprecedented opportunity for the rational and precise design of functional materials. PMID:23944646

  5. Fine tuning of the PCDTBT-OR:PC71BM blend nanoscale phase separation via selective solvent annealing toward high-performance polymer photovoltaics

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Meng, Bin; Fang, Gang; Fu, Yingying; Xie, Zhiyuan; Wang, Lixiang

    2013-12-01

    Solution-processable polymer solar cells show great promise for providing a cost-effective route to create lightweight and flexible solar energy conversion devices. The photoactive layer comprising the conjugated polymer donor and fullerene derivative acceptor must be optimized to form bicontinuous nanoscale phase separation in order for efficient exciton dissociation and charge collection due to the short exciton diffusion length of organic semiconductors. The donor polymer poly[9-(heptadecan-9-yl)-9H-carbazole- 2,7-diyl-alt-(5,6-bis(hexyloxy)-4,7-di(thiophen-2- yl)benzo[c][1,2,5]thiadiazole)-5,5-diyl] (PCDTBT-OR) has a deeper highest occupied molecular orbital level compared to its counterpart PCDTBT, and shows promise in increasing the open-circuit voltage and power conversion efficiency (PCE) of polymer solar cells. The phase separation evolution of the PCDTBT-OR:PC71BM blend with various weight ratios under tetrahydrofuran (THF) vapor annealing and its influence on the photovoltaic performance is investigated in detail. It is found that THF vapor annealing can promote the acceptor PC71BM aggregation from the donor PCDTBT-OR matrix to form nanoscale donor/acceptor phase separation for efficient exciton dissociation and charge collection depending on the donor/acceptor weight ratio and the annealing time. The THF vapor-annealed PCDTBT-OR:PC71BM solar cells exhibit remarkable enhancement, with a PCE of 7.01% compared to 3.25% of the as-cast solar cells with the same active layer thickness. This work provides a general methodology to construct nano-interpenetrating networks for homogeneous polymer/fullerene blends and is potentially applicable to the roll-to-roll manufacturing of polymer solar cells.

  6. Fine tuning of the PCDTBT-OR:PC71BM blend nanoscale phase separation via selective solvent annealing toward high-performance polymer photovoltaics.

    PubMed

    Meng, Bin; Fang, Gang; Fu, Yingying; Xie, Zhiyuan; Wang, Lixiang

    2013-12-06

    Solution-processable polymer solar cells show great promise for providing a cost-effective route to create lightweight and flexible solar energy conversion devices. The photoactive layer comprising the conjugated polymer donor and fullerene derivative acceptor must be optimized to form bicontinuous nanoscale phase separation in order for efficient exciton dissociation and charge collection due to the short exciton diffusion length of organic semiconductors. The donor polymer poly[9-(heptadecan-9-yl)-9H-carbazole- 2,7-diyl-alt-(5,6-bis(hexyloxy)-4,7-di(thiophen-2- yl)benzo[c][1,2,5]thiadiazole)-5,5-diyl] (PCDTBT-OR) has a deeper highest occupied molecular orbital level compared to its counterpart PCDTBT, and shows promise in increasing the open-circuit voltage and power conversion efficiency (PCE) of polymer solar cells. The phase separation evolution of the PCDTBT-OR:PC71BM blend with various weight ratios under tetrahydrofuran (THF) vapor annealing and its influence on the photovoltaic performance is investigated in detail. It is found that THF vapor annealing can promote the acceptor PC71BM aggregation from the donor PCDTBT-OR matrix to form nanoscale donor/acceptor phase separation for efficient exciton dissociation and charge collection depending on the donor/acceptor weight ratio and the annealing time. The THF vapor-annealed PCDTBT-OR:PC71BM solar cells exhibit remarkable enhancement, with a PCE of 7.01% compared to 3.25% of the as-cast solar cells with the same active layer thickness. This work provides a general methodology to construct nano-interpenetrating networks for homogeneous polymer/fullerene blends and is potentially applicable to the roll-to-roll manufacturing of polymer solar cells.

  7. Orbital Energy Levels in Molecular Hydrogen. A Simple Approach.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Willis, Christopher J.

    1988-01-01

    Described are the energetics involved in the formation of molecular hydrogen using concepts that should be familiar to students beginning the study of molecular orbital theory. Emphasized are experimental data on ionization energies. Included are two-electron atomic and molecular systems. (CW)

  8. Use of molecular stoichiometry to estimate vibrational energy

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Edward Grice, M.; Politzer, Peter

    1995-10-01

    Using a data base of molecular vibrational energies computed by a density functional procedure, temperature-dependent relationships have been developed which permit these energies to be accurately estimated from molecular stoichoimetry. This should significantly facilitate the calculation of reaction energetics.

  9. To (TGF)β or not to (TGF)β: Fine-tuning of Smad Signaling Via Post-Translational Modifications

    PubMed Central

    Wrighton, Katharine H.; Feng, Xin-Hua

    2008-01-01

    Summary Smad proteins are key signal transducers for the TGF-β superfamily and are frequently inactivated in human cancers, yet the molecular basis of how their levels and activities are regulated remains unclear. Recent progress, discussed herein, illustrates the critical roles of Smad post-translational modifications in the cellular outcome to TGF-β signaling. PMID:18387785

  10. Multi-TeV Gamma-Ray Observation from the Crab Nebula Using the Tibet-III Air Shower Array Finely Tuned by the Cosmic Ray Moon's Shadow

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Amenomori, M.; Bi, X. J.; Chen, D.; Cui, S. W.; Danzengluobu; Ding, L. K.; Ding, X. H.; Fan, C.; Feng, C. F.; Feng, Zhaoyang; Feng, Z. Y.; Gao, X. Y.; Geng, Q. X.; Guo, H. W.; He, H. H.; He, M.; Hibino, K.; Hotta, N.; Hu, Haibing; Hu, H. B.; Huang, J.; Huang, Q.; Jia, H. Y.; Kajino, F.; Kasahara, K.; Katayose, Y.; Kato, C.; Kawata, K.; Labaciren; Le, G. M.; Li, A. F.; Li, J. Y.; Lou, Y.-Q.; Lu, H.; Lu, S. L.; Meng, X. R.; Mizutani, K.; Mu, J.; Munakata, K.; Nagai, A.; Nanjo, H.; Nishizawa, M.; Ohnishi, M.; Ohta, I.; Onuma, H.; Ouchi, T.; Ozawa, S.; Ren, J. R.; Saito, T.; Saito, T. Y.; Sakata, M.; Sako, T. K.; Shibata, M.; Shiomi, A.; Shirai, T.; Sugimoto, H.; Takita, M.; Tan, Y. H.; Tateyama, N.; Torii, S.; Tsuchiya, H.; Udo, S.; Wang, B.; Wang, H.; Wang, X.; Wang, Y.; Wang, Y. G.; Wu, H. R.; Xue, L.; Yamamoto, Y.; Yan, C. T.; Yang, X. C.; Yasue, S.; Ye, Z. H.; Yu, G. C.; Yuan, A. F.; Yuda, T.; Zhang, H. M.; Zhang, J. L.; Zhang, N. J.; Zhang, X. Y.; Zhang, Y.; Zhang, Yi; Zhaxisangzhu; Zhou, X. X.

    2009-02-01

    The Tibet-III air shower array, consisting of 533 scintillation detectors, has been operating successfully at Yangbajing in Tibet, China since 1999. Using the data set collected by this array from 1999 November through 2005 November, we obtained the energy spectrum of γ-rays from the Crab Nebula, expressed by a power law as (dJ/dE) = (2.09 ± 0.32) × 10-12(E/3 TeV)-2.96±0.14 cm-2 s-1 TeV-1 in the energy range of 1.7-40 TeV. This result is consistent with other independent γ-ray observations by imaging air Cherenkov telescopes. In this paper, we carefully checked and tuned the performance of the Tibet-III array using data on the Moon's shadow in comparison with a detailed Monte Carlo (MC) simulation. The shadow is shifted to the west of the Moon's apparent position as an effect of the geomagnetic field, although the extent of this displacement depends on the primary energy of positively charged cosmic rays. This finding enables us to estimate the systematic error in determining the primary energy from its shower size. This error is estimated to be less than ±12% in our experiment. This energy scale estimation is the first attempt among cosmic ray experiments at ground level. The systematic pointing error is also estimated to be smaller than 0fdg011. The deficit rate and the position of the Moon's shadow are shown to be very stable within a statistical error of ±6% year by year. This guarantees the long-term stability of pointlike source observation with the Tibet-III array. These systematic errors are adequately taken into account in our study of the Crab Nebula.

  11. Molecular Slater Integrals for Electronic Energy Calculations

    DTIC Science & Technology

    2010-10-15

    Facultad de Ciencias . Departamento de Quı́mica Fı́sica Aplicada. C-XIV. Abstract The algorithms for computing molecular integrals with Slater functions...and propulsion sciences research programs. This extension requires a thorough revision on the performance of the algorithms currently available and

  12. Localization of energy on the molecular scale

    SciTech Connect

    Lindenberg, K.; Brown, D.W.

    1997-12-31

    We discuss the spontaneous localization of vibrational energy in translationally invariant anharmonic chains at finite temperatures. In addition to the familiar energy-driven coherent mechanisms, which are rapidly degraded by thermal fluctuations, we identify the entropy-driven phenomenon we call {open_quotes}stochastic localization{close_quotes}, within which we include a number of characteristics of soft anharmonic oscillators in thermal equilibrium. Principal among these are a tendency for soft oscillators to spend more time at higher energies than comparable harmonic oscillators, and for high-energy fluctuations in soft oscillators to persist for longer times than lower-energy fluctuations, leading to a tendency for energy fluctuations to be organized into {open_quotes}bursts{close_quotes} separated by intervals of relative quiet. We illustrate the effects of stochastic localization on a bistable impurity embedded in a chain of soft oscillators by comparing it to an impurity embedded in a harmonic chain. Effects on transition rates at a given system energy can be quite dramatic.

  13. Dynamics of Dark Energy

    SciTech Connect

    Copeland, Edmund J.

    2007-11-20

    I briefly review attempts that have been made to model dark energy. These include models of a cosmological constant, dynamical models where a scalar field may be responsible for the observed late time acceleration through to the possibility that we are not fully in control of the gravity sector and the acceleration may be some manifestation of modified gravity. In all cases we will see some degree of fine tuning is required with the current models.

  14. The Ratio of 2-AG to Its Isomer 1-AG as an Intrinsic Fine Tuning Mechanism of CB1 Receptor Activation

    PubMed Central

    Dócs, Klaudia; Mészár, Zoltán; Gonda, Sándor; Kiss-Szikszai, Attila; Holló, Krisztina; Antal, Miklós; Hegyi, Zoltán

    2017-01-01

    Endocannabinoids are pleiotropic lipid messengers that play pro-homeostatic role in cellular physiology by strongly influencing intracellular Ca2+ concentration through the activation of cannabinoid receptors. One of the best-known endocannabinoid ‘2-AG’ is chemically unstable in aqueous solutions, thus its molecular rearrangement, resulting in the formation of 1-AG, may influence 2-AG-mediated signaling depending on the relative concentration and potency of the two isomers. To predict whether this molecular rearrangement may be relevant in physiological processes and in experiments with 2-AG, here we studied if isomerization of 2-AG has an impact on 2-AG-induced, CB1-mediated Ca2+ signaling in vitro. We found that the isomerization-dependent drop in effective 2-AG concentration caused only a weak diminution of Ca2+ signaling in CB1 transfected COS7 cells. We also found that 1-AG induces Ca2+ transients through the activation of CB1, but its working concentration is threefold higher than that of 2-AG. Decreasing the concentration of 2-AG in parallel to the prevention of 1-AG formation by rapid preparation of 2-AG solutions, caused a significant diminution of Ca2+ signals. However, various mixtures of the two isomers in a fix total concentration – mimicking the process of isomerization over time – attenuated the drop in 2-AG potency, resulting in a minor decrease in CB1 mediated Ca2+ transients. Our results indicate that release of 2-AG into aqueous medium is accompanied by its isomerization, resulting in a drop of 2-AG concentration and simultaneous formation of the similarly bioactive isomer 1-AG. Thus, the relative concentration of the two isomers with different potency and efficacy may influence CB1 activation and the consequent biological responses. In addition, our results suggest that 1-AG may play role in stabilizing the strength of cannabinoid signal in case of prolonged 2-AG dependent cannabinoid mechanisms. PMID:28265242

  15. State-to-state dynamics of molecular energy transfer

    SciTech Connect

    Gentry, W.R.

    1991-10-01

    This report discusses: energy transfer from vibrationally excited states of the ground electronic state in molecular iodine + helium collisions; state-to-state vibrational and rotational excitation of glyoxal; rotational excitation of molecular iodine; and rotational excitation of p-Difluorobenzene. 11 figs. (LSP)

  16. The diatom Phaeodactylum tricornutum adjusts nonphotochemical fluorescence quenching capacity in response to dynamic light via fine-tuned Lhcx and xanthophyll cycle pigment synthesis.

    PubMed

    Lepetit, Bernard; Gélin, Gautier; Lepetit, Mariana; Sturm, Sabine; Vugrinec, Sascha; Rogato, Alessandra; Kroth, Peter G; Falciatore, Angela; Lavaud, Johann

    2017-04-01

    Diatoms contain a highly flexible capacity to dissipate excessively absorbed light by nonphotochemical fluorescence quenching (NPQ) based on the light-induced conversion of diadinoxanthin (Dd) into diatoxanthin (Dt) and the presence of Lhcx proteins. Their NPQ fine regulation on the molecular level upon a shift to dynamic light conditions is unknown. We investigated the regulation of Dd + Dt amount, Lhcx gene and protein synthesis and NPQ capacity in the diatom Phaeodactylum tricornutum after a change from continuous low light to 3 d of sine (SL) or fluctuating (FL) light conditions. Four P. tricornutum strains with different NPQ capacities due to different expression of Lhcx1 were included. All strains responded to dynamic light comparably, independently of initial NPQ capacity. During SL, NPQ capacity was strongly enhanced due to a gradual increase of Lhcx2 and Dd + Dt amount. During FL, cells enhanced their NPQ capacity on the first day due to increased Dd + Dt, Lhcx2 and Lhcx3; already by the second day light acclimation was accomplished. While quenching efficiency of Dt was strongly lowered during SL conditions, it remained high throughout the whole FL exposure. Our results highlight a more balanced and cost-effective photoacclimation strategy of P. tricornutum under FL than under SL conditions.

  17. Surface Immobilization of Molecular Electrocatalysts for Energy Conversions.

    PubMed

    Bullock, Morris; Das, Atanu K; Appel, Aaron M

    2017-02-08

    Electrocatalysts are critically important for a secure energy future, as they facilitate the conversion between electrical and chemical energy. Molecular catalysts offer precise control of structure that enables understanding of structure-reactivity relationships, which can be difficult to achieve with heterogeneous catalysts. Molecular electrocatalysts can be immobilized on surfaces by covalent bonds or through non-covalent interactions. Advantages of surface immobilization include the need for less catalyst, avoidance of bimolecular decomposition pathways, and easier determination of catalyst lifetime. This mini-review highlights surface immobilization of molecular electrocatalysts for reduction of O2, oxidation of H2O, production of H2, and reduction of CO2.

  18. Nondynamical correlation energy in model molecular systems

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chojnacki, Henryk

    The hypersurfaces for the deprotonation processes have been studied at the nonempirical level for H3O+, NH+4, PH+4, and H3S+ cations within their correlation consistent basis set. The potential energy curves were calculated and nondynamical correlation energies analyzed. We have found that the restricted Hartree-Fock wavefunction leads to the improper dissociation limit and, in the three latest cases requires multireference description. We conclude that these systems may be treated as a good models for interpretation of the proton transfer mechanism as well as for testing one-determinantal or multireference cases.

  19. Different Soluble Forms of the Interleukin-6 Family Signal Transducer gp130 Fine-tune the Blockade of Interleukin-6 Trans-signaling.

    PubMed

    Wolf, Janina; Waetzig, Georg H; Chalaris, Athena; Reinheimer, Torsten M; Wege, Henning; Rose-John, Stefan; Garbers, Christoph

    2016-07-29

    Soluble forms of the IL-6 receptor (sIL-6R) bind to the cytokine IL-6 with similar affinity as the membrane-bound IL-6R. IL-6·sIL-6R complexes initiate IL-6 trans-signaling via activation of the ubiquitously expressed membrane-bound β-receptor glycoprotein 130 (gp130). Inhibition of IL-6 trans-signaling has been shown to be favorable in numerous inflammatory diseases. Furthermore, different soluble forms of gp130 (sgp130) exist that, together with the sIL-6R, are thought to form a buffer for IL-6 in the blood. However, a functional role for the different sgp130 forms has not been described to date. Here we demonstrate that the metalloproteases ADAM10 and ADAM17 can produce sgp130 by ectodomain shedding of gp130, even though this mechanism only accounts for a minor proportion of sgp130 in the circulation. We further show that full-length sgp130 and the shorter forms sgp130-rheumatoid arthritis-associated peptide (RAPS) and sgp130-E10 are differentially expressed in a cell type- specific manner. Remarkably, full-length sgp130 is expressed by monocytes, but this expression is completely lost during differentiation into macrophages in vitro Using genetically engineered murine pre-B cells that secrete different forms of sgp130, we found that these secreted sgp130 proteins are able to prevent trans-signaling-driven cell proliferation of the secreting cells, whereas conditioned supernatant from these cells failed to block IL-6 trans-signaling in other cells. Thus, our data suggest that the different sgp130 forms are released from cells into their immediate surroundings and appear to form cell-associated gradients to modulate their own susceptibility for IL-6 trans-signaling. © 2016 by The American Society for Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, Inc.

  20. Fine tuning of emission color of iridium(III) complexes from yellow to red via substituent effect on 2-phenylbenzothiazole ligands: synthesis, photophysical, electrochemical and DFT study.

    PubMed

    Li, Ming; Zeng, Hui; Meng, Yanyan; Sun, Huiqin; Liu, Song; Lu, Zhiyun; Huang, Yan; Pu, Xuemei

    2011-07-21

    Four novel iridium(III) complexes bearing biphenyl (7a-7c) or fluorenyl (7d) modified benzothiazole cyclometallate ligands are synthesized. In comparison with the yellow parent complex, bis(2-phenylbenzothiozolato-N,C(2')) iridium(III) (acetylacetonate) [(pbt)(2)Ir(acac)] (λ(PLmax) = 557 nm, φ(PL) = 0.26), 7a-7d show 20-43 nm bathochromic shifted orange or red phosphorescence in solution, with maximum photoluminescence (PL) quantum yield of 0.62, and PL lifetime of 1.8-2.0 μs. Meanwhile, the resulting complexes also exhibit intense orange or red phosphorescence of λ(PLmax) = 588-611 nm in solid films. The complex 7c with two tert-butyl substituents possesses the highest phosphorescent efficiency both in dilute solution and thin solid films, therefore may be a prospective candidate for both doping and host emitting electrophosphorescent material. Furthermore, despite the observation of severe oxygen quenching for 7a-7d in solution, 7a and 7c even show efficient emission intensity quenching by oxygen in their solid state due to the existence of void channels in crystals; consequently, they are promising molecular oxygen sensor reagents. Electrochemical measurement and DFT calculation results suggest that all these chelates own declined LUMOs of 0.1 eV relative to that of (pbt)(2)Ir(acac) owing to the contribution of the phenyl substituents; whereas only 7d shows a more destabilized HOMO (∼0.1 eV) compared with the parent chelate.

  1. Low Energy Inelastic Atomic and Molecular Collisions.

    DTIC Science & Technology

    1981-04-15

    oemey A 17 mca mem ewa) atomic collisions deuterium molecular Collisions hydrogen argon .. excitation C argon Ions Ion beams LU & AinVIACt~ re- o sed a...1981). The intent of this work., described in our proposal, was toI obtain sufficient resolution of phosphorus, sulfur and argon L-x rays under single...collision, there are other intense VUV lines as well: the dominant ones observed in the 500-1100 A range were emission from the 2p excitation of neutral He

  2. Molecular Beam Studies of Low Energy Reactions.

    DTIC Science & Technology

    1983-03-31

    COMPLETING PORN . REPORT NUMBER 1 2. GOVT ACCESSION NO. S. RECIPIENT’S CATALOG NUMBER A D A Oaq J- 4. TITLE (And Subtitle) . TYPE OF REPORT & PERIOD COVERED...Gatlinburg, Tenn . in 1981. 2+ c) Studies were made of the charge transfer reaction Ar + Ar 4 2+ Ar + Ar at relative energies from 2 to 1000 eV. Reasons for

  3. Supersymmetric Model-Building in the Era of LHC Data: From Struggles with Naturalness to the Simple Delights of Fine-Tuning

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zorawski, Thomas

    The Standard Model (SM) of particle physics has withstood decades of experimental tests, making it the crowning achievement of 20th century physics. However, it is not a complete description of nature. Observations have revealed that most of the matter in the universe is not of the baryonic form described in the SM but rather something else known as dark matter. The SM also has theoretical shortcomings: 1) No explanation for the widely-varying masses of different particles (flavor puzzle); 2) Failure of the couplings that characterize the strength of the three SM forces to unify at a high energy scale; 3) Instability of the Higgs mass (hierarchy problem). The simplest version of supersymmetry (SUSY) introduces a partner for each SM particle, resulting in the Minimal Supersymmetric Standard Model (MSSM). The lightest of these is stable and an appealing dark matter candidate, and the extra particle content yields good gauge coupling unification. Most model-building, however, has been inspired by the natural solution that the MSSM provides to the hierarchy problem when the superpartner masses are close to the weak scale, leading to the paradigm of the Natural (weak-scale) MSSM. Although the first run of the Large Hadron Collider (LHC) did not operate at the design energy, the data is already in tension with the idea of naturalness, as the bounds on some superpartner masses in vanilla models are significantly above the weak scale. We address this by constructing a hybrid of the two most appealing SUSY breaking mechanisms (gauge and anomaly mediation) that compresses part of the superpartner spectrum and reduces experimental sensitivity, thereby loosening the constraints. Nonetheless, the recent discovery of a Higgs-like particle at the LHC with a mass around 125 GeV that can only be obtained in the weak-scale MSSM with fairly heavy superpartners casts serious doubt on naturalness. It does, however, point in the direction of a different paradigm in the MSSM known as

  4. Fine Tuning of Multicolored Photoluminescence in Crystalline Magnetic Materials Constructed of Trimetallic EuxTb1-x[Co(CN)6] Cyanido-Bridged Chains.

    PubMed

    Chorazy, Szymon; Kumar, Kunal; Nakabayashi, Koji; Sieklucka, Barbara; Ohkoshi, Shin-Ichi

    2017-05-01

    Coordination compounds built of trivalent lanthanide ions have been demonstrated as promising solid-state materials for diverse photoluminescent applications and as attractive magnetic objects with the prospective application in information storage and spintronics. We present a synthetic methodology in which both luminescent and magnetic functionalities are induced within lanthanide-based coordination polymers by the application of hexacyanocobaltate(III) anions and 3-hydroxypyridine (3-OHpy), both coordinated to 4f-metal ions modulating the lanthanide-centered properties. We report a series of trimetallic cyanido-bridged chains {[Eu(III)xTb(III)1-x(3-OHpy)2(H2O)4][Co(III)(CN)6]}·H2O (x = 1, 0.8, 0.5, 0.4, 0.3, 0.2, 0.1, 0; compounds 1, 2, ..., 7, 8). They reveal tunable visible photoluminescence ranging from green, through yellow and orange, to red color depending on the composition of material and the wavelength of UV excitation light. Such multicolored emission is realized by the adjusted ratio between red emissive Eu(3+) and green emissive Tb(3+) and by the selection of wavelengths of UV light controlling the intensities of Eu- and Tb-based components of visible luminescence. The photoluminescence is enhanced by the energy-transfer (ET) process from [Co(III)(CN)6](3-) and 3-OHpy to lanthanides, and the efficiencies of ET to Eu and Tb play an important role in the switchable emission. The whole family, 1-8, exhibits temperature-dependent paramagnetism due to the intrinsic property of lanthanide(3+) ions. Tb-containing 2-8 reveal the field-induced slow relaxation of magnetization due to the magnetic anisotropy of Tb(3+). Moreover, the compounds built of large amounts of Tb reveal the double relaxation, the faster of a typical Tb(III) single-ion origin, and the slower originating from the magnetic dipole-magnetic dipole interactions between neighboring Tb(III) centers. Compound 2, which can be considered as a magnetically diluted sample, exhibits almost single

  5. Fine-Tuning of Photoautotrophic Protein Production by Combining Promoters and Neutral Sites in the Cyanobacterium Synechocystis sp. Strain PCC 6803

    PubMed Central

    Berla, Bertram M.

    2015-01-01

    Cyanobacteria are photosynthetic cell factories that use solar energy to convert CO2 into useful products. Despite this attractive feature, the development of tools for engineering cyanobacterial chassis has lagged behind that for heterotrophs such as Escherichia coli or Saccharomyces cerevisiae. Heterologous genes in cyanobacteria are often integrated at presumptively “neutral” chromosomal sites, with unknown effects. We used transcriptome sequencing (RNA-seq) data for the model cyanobacterium Synechocystis sp. strain PCC 6803 to identify neutral sites from which no transcripts are expressed. We characterized the two largest such sites on the chromosome, a site on an endogenous plasmid, and a shuttle vector by integrating an enhanced yellow fluorescent protein (EYFP) expression cassette expressed from either the Pcpc560 or the Ptrc1O promoter into each locus. Expression from the endogenous plasmid was as much as 14-fold higher than that from the chromosome, with intermediate expression from the shuttle vector. The expression characteristics of each locus correlated predictably with the promoters used. These findings provide novel, characterized tools for synthetic biology and metabolic engineering in cyanobacteria. PMID:26209663

  6. Hydration Free Energies of Molecular Ions from Theory and Simulation.

    PubMed

    Misin, Maksim; Fedorov, Maxim V; Palmer, David S

    2016-02-11

    We present a theoretical/computational framework for accurate calculation of hydration free energies of ionized molecular species. The method is based on a molecular theory, 3D-RISM, combined with a recently developed pressure correction (PC+). The 3D-RISM/PC+ model can provide ∼3 kcal/mol hydration free energy accuracy for a large variety of ionic compounds, provided that the Galvani potential of water is taken into account. The results are compared with direct atomistic simulations. Several methodological aspects of hydration free energy calculations for charged species are discussed.

  7. Photon Upconversion and Molecular Solar Energy Storage by Maximizing the Potential of Molecular Self-Assembly.

    PubMed

    Kimizuka, Nobuo; Yanai, Nobuhiro; Morikawa, Masa-Aki

    2016-11-29

    The self-assembly of functional molecules into ordered molecular assemblies and the fulfillment of potentials unique to their nanotomesoscopic structures have been one of the central challenges in chemistry. This Feature Article provides an overview of recent progress in the field of molecular self-assembly with the focus on the triplet-triplet annihilation-based photon upconversion (TTA-UC) and supramolecular storage of photon energy. On the basis of the integration of molecular self-assembly and photon energy harvesting, triplet energy migration-based TTA-UC has been achieved in varied molecular systems. Interestingly, some molecular self-assemblies dispersed in solution or organogels revealed oxygen barrier properties, which allowed TTA-UC even under aerated conditions. The elements of molecular self-assembly were also introduced to the field of molecular solar thermal fuel, where reversible photoliquefaction of ionic crystals to ionic liquids was found to double the molecular storage capacity with the simultaneous pursuit of switching ionic conductivity. A future prospect in terms of innovating molecular self-assembly toward molecular systems chemistry is also discussed.

  8. Energy Transformation in Molecular Electronic Systems

    SciTech Connect

    Kasha, Michael

    1999-05-17

    This laboratory has developed many new ideas and methods in the electronic spectroscopy of molecules. This report covers the contract period 1993-1995. A number of the projects were completed in 1996, and those papers are included in the report. The DOE contract was terminated at the end of 1995 owing to a reorganizational change eliminating nationally the projects under the Office of Health and Environmental Research, U. S. Department of Energy.

  9. Nonequilibrium Molecular Energy Coupling and Conversion Mechanisms

    DTIC Science & Technology

    2016-08-28

    N2(v=1) + N2(w-1), due to overpopulation of high vibrational levels, N2(w>2), during the discharge pulse. This results in net vibrational energy...transfer to the low levels in the afterglow, transient overpopulation of N2(v=1), and increase of the “first level” N2 vibrational temperature...it can be seen that the overall trend of transient overpopulation of v=1 and gradual decay of higher level DISTRIBUTION A: Distribution approved for

  10. Fine-tuning the fruit-tracking hypothesis: spatiotemporal links between fruit availability and fruit consumption by birds in Andean mountain forests.

    PubMed

    Blendinger, Pedro G; Ruggera, Román A; Núñez Montellano, M Gabriela; Macchi, Leandro; Zelaya, Patricia V; Álvarez, M Eva; Martín, Eduardo; Acosta, Oriana Osinaga; Sánchez, Rocío; Haedo, Josefina; Boots, Mike

    2012-11-01

    described fruit-frugivore relationships better than traditional measurements. Moreover, we show that covariation between frugivore abundance, frequency of fruit consumption and fruit availability must be included in the fruit-tracking hypothesis framework to demonstrate (or reject) spatiotemporal fruit tracking. We propose that estimation of nutrient and energy availability in fruits could be a new frontier to understanding the forces driving foraging decisions that lead to fruit tracking.

  11. Low Molecular Weight Norbornadiene Derivatives for Molecular Solar‐Thermal Energy Storage

    PubMed Central

    Quant, Maria; Lennartson, Anders; Dreos, Ambra; Kuisma, Mikael; Erhart, Paul; Börjesson, Karl

    2016-01-01

    Abstract Molecular solar‐thermal energy storage systems are based on molecular switches that reversibly convert solar energy into chemical energy. Herein, we report the synthesis, characterization, and computational evaluation of a series of low molecular weight (193–260 g mol−1) norbornadiene–quadricyclane systems. The molecules feature cyano acceptor and ethynyl‐substituted aromatic donor groups, leading to a good match with solar irradiation, quantitative photo‐thermal conversion between the norbornadiene and quadricyclane, as well as high energy storage densities (396–629 kJ kg−1). The spectroscopic properties and energy storage capability have been further evaluated through density functional theory calculations, which indicate that the ethynyl moiety plays a critical role in obtaining the high oscillator strengths seen for these molecules. PMID:27492997

  12. Low Molecular Weight Norbornadiene Derivatives for Molecular Solar-Thermal Energy Storage.

    PubMed

    Quant, Maria; Lennartson, Anders; Dreos, Ambra; Kuisma, Mikael; Erhart, Paul; Börjesson, Karl; Moth-Poulsen, Kasper

    2016-09-05

    Molecular solar-thermal energy storage systems are based on molecular switches that reversibly convert solar energy into chemical energy. Herein, we report the synthesis, characterization, and computational evaluation of a series of low molecular weight (193-260 g mol(-1) ) norbornadiene-quadricyclane systems. The molecules feature cyano acceptor and ethynyl-substituted aromatic donor groups, leading to a good match with solar irradiation, quantitative photo-thermal conversion between the norbornadiene and quadricyclane, as well as high energy storage densities (396-629 kJ kg(-1) ). The spectroscopic properties and energy storage capability have been further evaluated through density functional theory calculations, which indicate that the ethynyl moiety plays a critical role in obtaining the high oscillator strengths seen for these molecules. © 2016 The Authors. Published by Wiley-VCH Verlag GmbH & Co. KGaA.

  13. Energy Aspects of Thermal Molecular Switching: Molecular Thermal Hysteresis of Helicene Oligomers.

    PubMed

    Shigeno, Masanori; Kushida, Yo; Yamaguchi, Masahiko

    2015-07-20

    Molecular switching is a phenomenon by which a molecule reversibly changes its structure and state in response to external stimuli or energy. Herein, molecular switching is discussed from thermodynamic and kinetic aspects in terms of energy supply with an emphasis on the thermal switching exhibited by helicene oligomers. It includes the inversion of relative thermodynamic stability induced by temperature changes and molecular thermal hysteresis in a closed system. The thermal phenomenon associated with the oligomers involves population/concentration changes between metastable states under nonequilibrium thermodynamic control.

  14. Energy dissipation in an adaptive molecular circuit

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wang, Shou-Wen; Lan, Yueheng; Tang, Lei-Han

    2015-07-01

    The ability to monitor nutrient and other environmental conditions with high sensitivity is crucial for cell growth and survival. Sensory adaptation allows a cell to recover its sensitivity after a transient response to a shift in the strength of extracellular stimulus. The working principles of adaptation have been established previously based on rate equations which do not consider fluctuations in a thermal environment. Recently, Lan et al (2012 Nat. Phys. 8 422-8) performed a detailed analysis of a stochastic model for the Escherichia coli sensory network. They showed that accurate adaptation is possible only when the system operates in a nonequilibrium steady-state (NESS). They further proposed an energy-speed-accuracy (ESA) trade-off relation. We present here analytic results on the NESS of the model through a mapping to a one-dimensional birth-death process. An exact expression for the entropy production rate is also derived. Based on these results, we are able to discuss the ESA relation in a more general setting. Our study suggests that the adaptation error can be reduced exponentially as the methylation range increases. Finally, we show that a nonequilibrium phase transition exists in the infinite methylation range limit, despite the fact that the model contains only two discrete variables.

  15. Electron energy-loss spectra in molecular fluorine

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Nishimura, H.; Cartwright, D. C.; Trajmar, S.

    1979-01-01

    Electron energy-loss spectra in molecular fluorine, for energy losses from 0 to 17.0 eV, have been taken at incident electron energies of 30, 50, and 90 eV and scattering angles from 5 to 140 deg. Features in the spectra above 11.5 eV energy loss agree well with the assignments recently made from optical spectroscopy. Excitations of many of the eleven repulsive valence excited electronic states are observed and their location correlates reasonably well with recent theoretical results. Several of these excitations have been observed for the first time and four features, for which there are no identifications, appear in the spectra.

  16. Study on Properties of Energy Spectra of the Molecular Crystals

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pang, Xiao-Feng; Chen, Xiang-Rong

    The energy-spectra of nonlinear vibration of molecular crystals such as acetanilide have been calculated by using discrete nonlinear Schrödinger equation appropriate to the systems, containing various interactions. The energy levels including higher excited states are basically consistent with experimental values obtained by infrared absorption and Raman scattering in acetanilide. We further give the features of distribution of the energy-spectra for the acetanilide. Using the energy spectra we also explained well experimental results obtained by Careri et al..

  17. Molecular dynamics simulation of threshold displacement energies in zircon

    SciTech Connect

    Moreira, Pedro A.; Devanathan, Ramaswami; Yu, Jianguo; Weber, William J.

    2009-10-15

    Molecular-dynamics simulations were used to examine the displacement threshold energy (Ed) surface for Zr, Si and O in zircon using two different interatomic potentials. For each sublattice, the simulation was repeated from different initial conditions to estimate the uncertainty in the calculated value of Ed. The displacement threshold energies vary considerably with crystallographic direction and sublattice. The average displacement energy calculated with a recently developed transferable potential is about 120 and 60 eV for cations and anions, respectively. The oxygen displacement energy shows good agreement with experimental estimates in ceramics.

  18. Fine tunings for inflation with simple potentials

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Izawa, K.-I.

    2014-11-01

    We continue to investigate possible parameter choices for primordial inflation with simple potentials such as power-law and two-term potentials. We examine the amount of parameter tuning required to make the slow-roll inflation eternal. In particular, we adopt the critical coupling for marginally eternal inflation and see whether realistic primordial inflation is attainable under such a parameter choice. It turns out that potentials with mass scale of grand unification provide, after tuning, consistent results with experimental data so that the considered tuning is allowed observationally. Namely, the primordial inflation is possibly marginal in such a setup.

  19. Fine-Tuning Your Ensemble's Jazz Style.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Garcia, Antonio J.

    1991-01-01

    Proposes instructional strategies for directors of jazz groups, including guidelines for developing of skills necessary for good performance. Includes effective methods for positive changes in ensemble style. Addresses jazz group problems such as beat, tempo, staying in tune, wind power, and solo/ensemble lines. Discusses percussionists, bassists,…

  20. Strigolactones fine-tune the root system.

    PubMed

    Rasmussen, Amanda; Depuydt, Stephen; Goormachtig, Sofie; Geelen, Danny

    2013-10-01

    Strigolactones were originally discovered to be involved in parasitic weed germination, in mycorrhizal association and in the control of shoot architecture. Despite their clear role in rhizosphere signaling, comparatively less attention has been given to the belowground function of strigolactones on plant development. However, research has revealed that strigolactones play a key role in the regulation of the root system including adventitious roots, primary root length, lateral roots, root hairs and nodulation. Here, we review the recent progress regarding strigolactone regulation of the root system and the antagonism and interplay with other hormones.

  1. Fine Tuning Gene Expression: The Epigenome

    PubMed Central

    Mohtat, Davoud; Susztak, Katalin

    2011-01-01

    An epigenetic trait is a stably inherited phenotype resulting from changes in a chromosome without alterations in the DNA sequence. Epigenetic modifications, such as; DNA methylation, together with covalent modification of histones, are thought to alter chromatin density and accessibility of the DNA to cellular machinery, thereby modulating the transcriptional potential of the underlying DNA sequence. As epigenetic marks under environmental influence, epigenetics provides an added layer of variation that might mediate the relationship between genotype and internal and external environmental factors. Integration of our knowledge in genetics, epigenomics and genomics with the use of systems biology tools may present investigators with new powerful tools to study many complex human diseases such as kidney disease. PMID:21044758

  2. Riboregulators: Fine-Tuning Virulence in Shigella.

    PubMed

    Fris, Megan E; Murphy, Erin R

    2016-01-01

    Within the past several years, RNA-mediated regulation (ribo-regulation) has become increasingly recognized for its importance in controlling critical bacterial processes. Regulatory RNA molecules, or riboregulators, are perpetually responsive to changes within the micro-environment of a bacterium. Notably, several characterized riboregulators control virulence in pathogenic bacteria, as is the case for each riboregulator characterized to date in Shigella. The timing of virulence gene expression and the ability of the pathogen to adapt to rapidly changing environmental conditions is critical to the establishment and progression of infection by Shigella species; ribo-regulators mediate each of these important processes. This mini review will present the current state of knowledge regarding RNA-mediated regulation in Shigella by detailing the characterization and function of each identified riboregulator in these pathogens.

  3. Resistive Fine Tuning of Resonant Circuit

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Mclyman, C. W.

    1985-01-01

    Simple fixed-inductance/fixed-capacitance tank circuit modified for fine adjustment of resonant frequency by addition of small inductance with potentiometer across it. Additional winding built into full winding as integral part or added externally. Technique provides quick way of tuning reactance out of power-transformer circuit to maximize power transfer or to adjust frequency of oscillator. Applications include rotary transformers, servo amplifiers, and analog computer modules.

  4. Riboregulators: Fine-Tuning Virulence in Shigella

    PubMed Central

    Fris, Megan E.; Murphy, Erin R.

    2016-01-01

    Within the past several years, RNA-mediated regulation (ribo-regulation) has become increasingly recognized for its importance in controlling critical bacterial processes. Regulatory RNA molecules, or riboregulators, are perpetually responsive to changes within the micro-environment of a bacterium. Notably, several characterized riboregulators control virulence in pathogenic bacteria, as is the case for each riboregulator characterized to date in Shigella. The timing of virulence gene expression and the ability of the pathogen to adapt to rapidly changing environmental conditions is critical to the establishment and progression of infection by Shigella species; ribo-regulators mediate each of these important processes. This mini review will present the current state of knowledge regarding RNA-mediated regulation in Shigella by detailing the characterization and function of each identified riboregulator in these pathogens. PMID:26858941

  5. State-to-state dynamics of molecular energy transfer

    SciTech Connect

    Gentry, W.R.; Giese, C.F.

    1993-12-01

    The goal of this research program is to elucidate the elementary dynamical mechanisms of vibrational and rotational energy transfer between molecules, at a quantum-state resolved level of detail. Molecular beam techniques are used to isolate individual molecular collisions, and to control the kinetic energy of collision. Lasers are used both to prepare specific quantum states prior to collision by stimulated-emission pumping (SEP), and to measure the distribution of quantum states in the collision products by laser-induced fluorescence (LIF). The results are interpreted in terms of dynamical models, which may be cast in a classical, semiclassical or quantum mechanical framework, as appropriate.

  6. Mechanism of Fine-tuning pH Sensors in Proprotein Convertases: IDENTIFICATION OF A pH-SENSING HISTIDINE PAIR IN THE PROPEPTIDE OF PROPROTEIN CONVERTASE 1/3.

    PubMed

    Williamson, Danielle M; Elferich, Johannes; Shinde, Ujwal

    2015-09-18

    The propeptides of proprotein convertases (PCs) regulate activation of cognate protease domains by sensing pH of their organellar compartments as they transit the secretory pathway. Earlier experimental work identified a conserved histidine-encoded pH sensor within the propeptide of the canonical PC, furin. To date, whether protonation of this conserved histidine is solely responsible for PC activation has remained unclear because of the observation that various PC paralogues are activated at different organellar pH values. To ascertain additional determinants of PC activation, we analyzed PC1/3, a paralogue of furin that is activated at a pH of ∼5.4. Using biophysical, biochemical, and cell-based methods, we mimicked the protonation status of various histidines within the propeptide of PC1/3 and examined how such alterations can modulate pH-dependent protease activation. Our results indicate that whereas the conserved histidine plays a crucial role in pH sensing and activation of this protease an additional histidine acts as a "gatekeeper" that fine-tunes the sensitivity of the PC1/3 propeptide to facilitate the release inhibition at higher proton concentrations when compared with furin. Coupled with earlier analyses that highlighted the enrichment of the amino acid histidine within propeptides of secreted eukaryotic proteases, our work elucidates how secreted proteases have evolved to exploit the pH of the secretory pathway by altering the spatial juxtaposition of titratable groups to regulate their activity in a spatiotemporal fashion.

  7. Transcriptomics of the interaction between the monopartite phloem-limited geminivirus tomato yellow leaf curl Sardinia virus and Solanum lycopersicum highlights a role for plant hormones, autophagy and plant immune system fine tuning during infection.

    PubMed

    Miozzi, Laura; Napoli, Chiara; Sardo, Luca; Accotto, Gian Paolo

    2014-01-01

    Tomato yellow leaf curl Sardinia virus (TYLCSV), a DNA virus belonging to the genus Begomovirus, causes severe losses in tomato crops. It infects only a limited number of cells in the vascular tissues, making difficult to detect changes in host gene expression linked to its presence. Here we present the first microarray study of transcriptional changes induced by the phloem-limited geminivirus TYLCSV infecting tomato, its natural host. The analysis was performed on the midrib of mature leaves, a material naturally enriched in vascular tissues. A total of 2206 genes were up-regulated and 1398 were down-regulated in infected plants, with an overrepresentation of genes involved in hormone metabolism and responses, nucleic acid metabolism, regulation of transcription, ubiquitin-proteasome pathway and autophagy among those up-regulated, and in primary and secondary metabolism, phosphorylation, transcription and methylation-dependent chromatin silencing among those down-regulated. Our analysis showed a series of responses, such as the induction of GA- and ABA-responsive genes, the activation of the autophagic process and the fine tuning of the plant immune system, observed only in TYLCSV-tomato compatible interaction so far. On the other hand, comparisons with transcriptional changes observed in other geminivirus-plant interactions highlighted common host responses consisting in the deregulation of biotic stress responsive genes, key enzymes in the ethylene biosynthesis and methylation cycle, components of the ubiquitin proteasome system and DNA polymerases II. The involvement of conserved miRNAs and of solanaceous- and tomato-specific miRNAs in geminivirus infection, investigated by integrating differential gene expression data with miRNA targeting data, is discussed.

  8. Photoswitchable Molecular Rings for Solar-Thermal Energy Storage.

    PubMed

    Durgun, E; Grossman, Jeffrey C

    2013-03-21

    Solar-thermal fuels reversibly store solar energy in the chemical bonds of molecules by photoconversion, and can release this stored energy in the form of heat upon activation. Many conventional photoswichable molecules could be considered as solar thermal fuels, although they suffer from low energy density or short lifetime in the photoinduced high-energy metastable state, rendering their practical use unfeasible. We present a new approach to the design of chemistries for solar thermal fuel applications, wherein well-known photoswitchable molecules are connected by different linker agents to form molecular rings. This approach allows for a significant increase in both the amount of stored energy per molecule and the stability of the fuels. Our results suggest a range of possibilities for tuning the energy density and thermal stability as a function of the type of the photoswitchable molecule, the ring size, or the type of linkers.

  9. A molecularly based theory for electron transfer reorganization energy.

    PubMed

    Zhuang, Bilin; Wang, Zhen-Gang

    2015-12-14

    Using field-theoretic techniques, we develop a molecularly based dipolar self-consistent-field theory (DSCFT) for charge solvation in pure solvents under equilibrium and nonequilibrium conditions and apply it to the reorganization energy of electron transfer reactions. The DSCFT uses a set of molecular parameters, such as the solvent molecule's permanent dipole moment and polarizability, thus avoiding approximations that are inherent in treating the solvent as a linear dielectric medium. A simple, analytical expression for the free energy is obtained in terms of the equilibrium and nonequilibrium electrostatic potential profiles and electric susceptibilities, which are obtained by solving a set of self-consistent equations. With no adjustable parameters, the DSCFT predicts activation energies and reorganization energies in good agreement with previous experiments and calculations for the electron transfer between metallic ions. Because the DSCFT is able to describe the properties of the solvent in the immediate vicinity of the charges, it is unnecessary to distinguish between the inner-sphere and outer-sphere solvent molecules in the calculation of the reorganization energy as in previous work. Furthermore, examining the nonequilibrium free energy surfaces of electron transfer, we find that the nonequilibrium free energy is well approximated by a double parabola for self-exchange reactions, but the curvature of the nonequilibrium free energy surface depends on the charges of the electron-transferring species, contrary to the prediction by the linear dielectric theory.

  10. A molecularly based theory for electron transfer reorganization energy

    SciTech Connect

    Zhuang, Bilin; Wang, Zhen-Gang

    2015-12-14

    Using field-theoretic techniques, we develop a molecularly based dipolar self-consistent-field theory (DSCFT) for charge solvation in pure solvents under equilibrium and nonequilibrium conditions and apply it to the reorganization energy of electron transfer reactions. The DSCFT uses a set of molecular parameters, such as the solvent molecule’s permanent dipole moment and polarizability, thus avoiding approximations that are inherent in treating the solvent as a linear dielectric medium. A simple, analytical expression for the free energy is obtained in terms of the equilibrium and nonequilibrium electrostatic potential profiles and electric susceptibilities, which are obtained by solving a set of self-consistent equations. With no adjustable parameters, the DSCFT predicts activation energies and reorganization energies in good agreement with previous experiments and calculations for the electron transfer between metallic ions. Because the DSCFT is able to describe the properties of the solvent in the immediate vicinity of the charges, it is unnecessary to distinguish between the inner-sphere and outer-sphere solvent molecules in the calculation of the reorganization energy as in previous work. Furthermore, examining the nonequilibrium free energy surfaces of electron transfer, we find that the nonequilibrium free energy is well approximated by a double parabola for self-exchange reactions, but the curvature of the nonequilibrium free energy surface depends on the charges of the electron-transferring species, contrary to the prediction by the linear dielectric theory.

  11. Calculation of molecular free energies in classical potentials

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Farhi, Asaf; Singh, Bipin

    2016-02-01

    Free energies of molecules can be calculated by quantum chemistry computations or by normal mode classical calculations. However, the first can be computationally impractical for large molecules and the second is based on the assumption of harmonic dynamics. We present a novel, accurate and complete calculation of molecular free energies in standard classical potentials. In this method we transform the molecule by relaxing potential terms which depend on the coordinates of a group of atoms in that molecule and calculate the free energy difference associated with the transformation. Then, since the transformed molecule can be treated as non-interacting systems, the free energy associated with these atoms is analytically or numerically calculated. This two-step calculation can be applied to calculate free energies of molecules or free energy difference between (possibly large) molecules in a general environment. We demonstrate the method in free energy calculations for methanethiol and butane molecules in vacuum and solvent. We suggest the potential application of free energy calculation of chemical reactions in classical molecular simulations.

  12. On the physical interpretation of the nuclear molecular orbital energy.

    PubMed

    Charry, Jorge; Pedraza-González, Laura; Reyes, Andrés

    2017-06-07

    Recently, several groups have extended and implemented molecular orbital (MO) schemes to simultaneously obtain wave functions for electrons and selected nuclei. Many of these schemes employ an extended Hartree-Fock approach as a first step to find approximate electron-nuclear wave functions and energies. Numerous studies conducted with these extended MO methodologies have explored various effects of quantum nuclei on physical and chemical properties. However, to the best of our knowledge no physical interpretation has been assigned to the nuclear molecular orbital energy (NMOE) resulting after solving extended Hartree-Fock equations. This study confirms that the NMOE is directly related to the molecular electrostatic potential at the position of the nucleus.

  13. Molecular ion sources for low energy semiconductor ion implantation (invited).

    PubMed

    Hershcovitch, A; Gushenets, V I; Seleznev, D N; Bugaev, A S; Dugin, S; Oks, E M; Kulevoy, T V; Alexeyenko, O; Kozlov, A; Kropachev, G N; Kuibeda, R P; Minaev, S; Vizir, A; Yushkov, G Yu

    2016-02-01

    Smaller semiconductors require shallow, low energy ion implantation, resulting space charge effects, which reduced beam currents and production rates. To increase production rates, molecular ions are used. Boron and phosphorous (or arsenic) implantation is needed for P-type and N-type semiconductors, respectively. Carborane, which is the most stable molecular boron ion leaves unacceptable carbon residue on extraction grids. A self-cleaning carborane acid compound (C4H12B10O4) was synthesized and utilized in the ITEP Bernas ion source resulting in large carborane ion output, without carbon residue. Pure gaseous processes are desired to enable rapid switch among ion species. Molecular phosphorous was generated by introducing phosphine in dissociators via 4PH3 = P4 + 6H2; generated molecular phosphorous in a pure gaseous process was then injected into the HCEI Calutron-Bernas ion source, from which P4(+) ion beams were extracted. Results from devices and some additional concepts are described.

  14. Molecular ion sources for low energy semiconductor ion implantation (invited)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hershcovitch, A.; Gushenets, V. I.; Seleznev, D. N.; Bugaev, A. S.; Dugin, S.; Oks, E. M.; Kulevoy, T. V.; Alexeyenko, O.; Kozlov, A.; Kropachev, G. N.; Kuibeda, R. P.; Minaev, S.; Vizir, A.; Yushkov, G. Yu.

    2016-02-01

    Smaller semiconductors require shallow, low energy ion implantation, resulting space charge effects, which reduced beam currents and production rates. To increase production rates, molecular ions are used. Boron and phosphorous (or arsenic) implantation is needed for P-type and N-type semiconductors, respectively. Carborane, which is the most stable molecular boron ion leaves unacceptable carbon residue on extraction grids. A self-cleaning carborane acid compound (C4H12B10O4) was synthesized and utilized in the ITEP Bernas ion source resulting in large carborane ion output, without carbon residue. Pure gaseous processes are desired to enable rapid switch among ion species. Molecular phosphorous was generated by introducing phosphine in dissociators via 4PH3 = P4 + 6H2; generated molecular phosphorous in a pure gaseous process was then injected into the HCEI Calutron-Bernas ion source, from which P4+ ion beams were extracted. Results from devices and some additional concepts are described.

  15. Generalized Potential Energy Finite Elements for Modeling Molecular Nanostructures.

    PubMed

    Chatzieleftheriou, Stavros; Adendorff, Matthew R; Lagaros, Nikos D

    2016-10-24

    The potential energy of molecules and nanostructures is commonly calculated in the molecular mechanics formalism by superimposing bonded and nonbonded atomic energy terms, i.e. bonds between two atoms, bond angles involving three atoms, dihedral angles involving four atoms, nonbonded terms expressing the Coulomb and Lennard-Jones interactions, etc. In this work a new, generalized numerical simulation is presented for studying the mechanical behavior of three-dimensional nanostructures at the atomic scale. The energy gradient and Hessian matrix of such assemblies are usually computed numerically; a potential energy finite element model is proposed herein where these two components are expressed analytically. In particular, generalized finite elements are developed that express the interactions among atoms in a manner equivalent to that invoked in simulations performed based on the molecular dynamics method. Thus, the global tangent stiffness matrix for any nanostructure is formed as an assembly of the generalized finite elements and is directly equivalent to the Hessian matrix of the potential energy. The advantages of the proposed model are identified in terms of both accuracy and computational efficiency. In the case of popular force fields (e.g., CHARMM), the computation of the Hessian matrix by implementing the proposed method is of the same order as that of the gradient. This analysis can be used to minimize the potential energy of molecular systems under nodal loads in order to derive constitutive laws for molecular systems where the entropy and solvent effects are neglected and can be approximated as solids, such as double stranded DNA nanostructures. In this context, the sequence dependent stretch modulus for some typical base pairs step is calculated.

  16. Surface chemical reactions induced by well-controlled molecular beams: translational energy and molecular orientation control.

    PubMed

    Okada, Michio

    2010-07-07

    I review our recent studies of chemical reactions on single-crystalline Cu and Si surfaces induced by hyperthermal oxygen molecular beams and by oriented molecular beams, respectively. Studies of oxide formation on Cu induced by hyperthermal molecular beams suggest that the translational energy of the incident molecules plays a significant role. The use of hyperthermal molecular beams enables us to open up new chemical reaction paths, and to develop new methods for the fabrication of thin films. Oriented molecular beams also demonstrate the possibility for controlling surface chemical reactions by varying the orientation of the incident molecules. The steric effects found on Si surfaces hint at new ways of achieving material fabrication on Si surfaces. Controlling the initial conditions of incoming molecules is a powerful tool for creating new materials on surfaces with well-controlled chemical reactions. © 2010 IOP Publishing Ltd

  17. Collision Induced Dissociation and Energy Transfer in Molecular Hydroge

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mandy, Margot E.

    2006-06-01

    Molecular hydrogen is a significant constituent in giant molecular clouds in the interstellar medium. Shocks in these clouds are associated with star formation. The cooling of the shocks is governed by competition of collisional energy transfer and dissociation with radiative cooling by quadrupole emission. Thus a detailed understanding of collisional behaviour of molecular hydrogen is needed. Work in this group has examined energy transfer and dissociation in molecular energy transfer as the result of collisions with H, D, He, and H2. Using quasiclassical trajectories and chemically accurate ab initio potentials state-to-state rate coefficients have been determined. The uncertainties of the cross sections are propagated rigourously to give uncertainties of the rate coefficients and the rate coefficients are parameterized as a function of temperature. Comparisons with quantum calculations are discussed and the proposed website is described.This work was supported by a grant from the Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada. The calculations were carried out using the high performance computing facility jointly supported by the Canadian Foundation for Innovation, the British Columbia Knowledge Development Fund, and Silicon Graphics at the University of Northern British Columbia.

  18. Energy conserving, linear scaling Born-Oppenheimer molecular dynamics.

    PubMed

    Cawkwell, M J; Niklasson, Anders M N

    2012-10-07

    Born-Oppenheimer molecular dynamics simulations with long-term conservation of the total energy and a computational cost that scales linearly with system size have been obtained simultaneously. Linear scaling with a low pre-factor is achieved using density matrix purification with sparse matrix algebra and a numerical threshold on matrix elements. The extended Lagrangian Born-Oppenheimer molecular dynamics formalism [A. M. N. Niklasson, Phys. Rev. Lett. 100, 123004 (2008)] yields microcanonical trajectories with the approximate forces obtained from the linear scaling method that exhibit no systematic drift over hundreds of picoseconds and which are indistinguishable from trajectories computed using exact forces.

  19. Machine learning of accurate energy-conserving molecular force fields.

    PubMed

    Chmiela, Stefan; Tkatchenko, Alexandre; Sauceda, Huziel E; Poltavsky, Igor; Schütt, Kristof T; Müller, Klaus-Robert

    2017-05-01

    Using conservation of energy-a fundamental property of closed classical and quantum mechanical systems-we develop an efficient gradient-domain machine learning (GDML) approach to construct accurate molecular force fields using a restricted number of samples from ab initio molecular dynamics (AIMD) trajectories. The GDML implementation is able to reproduce global potential energy surfaces of intermediate-sized molecules with an accuracy of 0.3 kcal mol(-1) for energies and 1 kcal mol(-1) Å̊(-1) for atomic forces using only 1000 conformational geometries for training. We demonstrate this accuracy for AIMD trajectories of molecules, including benzene, toluene, naphthalene, ethanol, uracil, and aspirin. The challenge of constructing conservative force fields is accomplished in our work by learning in a Hilbert space of vector-valued functions that obey the law of energy conservation. The GDML approach enables quantitative molecular dynamics simulations for molecules at a fraction of cost of explicit AIMD calculations, thereby allowing the construction of efficient force fields with the accuracy and transferability of high-level ab initio methods.

  20. Combining configurational energies and forces for molecular force field optimization

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Vlcek, Lukas; Sun, Weiwei; Kent, Paul R. C.

    2017-10-01

    While quantum chemical simulations have been increasingly used as an invaluable source of information for atomistic model development, the high computational expenses typically associated with these techniques often limit thorough sampling of the systems of interest. It is therefore of great practical importance to use all available information as efficiently as possible, and in a way that allows for consistent addition of constraints that may be provided by macroscopic experiments. Here we propose a simple approach that combines information from configurational energies and forces generated in a molecular dynamics simulation to increase the effective number of samples. Subsequently, this information is used to optimize a molecular force field by minimizing the statistical distance similarity metric. We illustrate the methodology on an example of a trajectory of configurations generated in equilibrium molecular dynamics simulations of argon and water and compare the results with those based on the force matching method.

  1. Free energy landscape and molecular pathways of gas hydrate nucleation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bi, Yuanfei; Porras, Anna; Li, Tianshu

    2016-12-01

    Despite the significance of gas hydrates in diverse areas, a quantitative knowledge of hydrate formation at a molecular level is missing. The impediment to acquiring this understanding is primarily attributed to the stochastic nature and ultra-fine scales of nucleation events, posing a great challenge for both experiment and simulation to explore hydrate nucleation. Here we employ advanced molecular simulation methods, including forward flux sampling (FFS), pB histogram analysis, and backward flux sampling, to overcome the limit of direct molecular simulation for exploring both the free energy landscape and molecular pathways of hydrate nucleation. First we test the half-cage order parameter (H-COP) which we developed for driving FFS, through conducting the pB histogram analysis. Our results indeed show that H-COP describes well the reaction coordinates of hydrate nucleation. Through the verified order parameter, we then directly compute the free energy landscape for hydrate nucleation by combining both forward and backward flux sampling. The calculated stationary distribution density, which is obtained independently of nucleation theory, is found to fit well against the classical nucleation theory (CNT). Subsequent analysis of the obtained large ensemble of hydrate nucleation trajectories show that although on average, hydrate formation is facilitated by a two-step like mechanism involving a gradual transition from an amorphous to a crystalline structure, there also exist nucleation pathways where hydrate crystallizes directly, without going through the amorphous stage. The CNT-like free energy profile and the structural diversity suggest the existence of multiple active transition pathways for hydrate nucleation, and possibly also imply the near degeneracy in their free energy profiles among different pathways. Our results thus bring a new perspective to the long standing question of how hydrates crystallize.

  2. Machine learning of accurate energy-conserving molecular force fields

    PubMed Central

    Chmiela, Stefan; Tkatchenko, Alexandre; Sauceda, Huziel E.; Poltavsky, Igor; Schütt, Kristof T.; Müller, Klaus-Robert

    2017-01-01

    Using conservation of energy—a fundamental property of closed classical and quantum mechanical systems—we develop an efficient gradient-domain machine learning (GDML) approach to construct accurate molecular force fields using a restricted number of samples from ab initio molecular dynamics (AIMD) trajectories. The GDML implementation is able to reproduce global potential energy surfaces of intermediate-sized molecules with an accuracy of 0.3 kcal mol−1 for energies and 1 kcal mol−1 Å̊−1 for atomic forces using only 1000 conformational geometries for training. We demonstrate this accuracy for AIMD trajectories of molecules, including benzene, toluene, naphthalene, ethanol, uracil, and aspirin. The challenge of constructing conservative force fields is accomplished in our work by learning in a Hilbert space of vector-valued functions that obey the law of energy conservation. The GDML approach enables quantitative molecular dynamics simulations for molecules at a fraction of cost of explicit AIMD calculations, thereby allowing the construction of efficient force fields with the accuracy and transferability of high-level ab initio methods. PMID:28508076

  3. Energy versus free-energy conservation in first-principles molecular dynamics

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wentzcovitch, Renata M.; Martins, José Luís; Allen, Philip B.

    1992-05-01

    In applying first-principles molecular dynamics to metals, a fictitious temperature is usefully assigned to the electronic (Fermi-Dirac) occupation functions. This avoids instabilities associated with fluctuations in these occupations during the minimization of the energy density functional. Because these occupations vary with the ionic motion, they give rise to an extra contribution in addition to the usual Hellmann-Feynman forces. If this extra force is omitted, energy is not conserved. We point out, however, that ionic kinetic energy plus electronic free energy is conserved, and argue that this yields a sensible and realistic conservative dynamics.

  4. Monte Carlo simulation of energy deposition by low-energy electrons in molecular hydrogen

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Heaps, M. G.; Furman, D. R.; Green, A. E. S.

    1975-01-01

    A set of detailed atomic cross sections has been used to obtain the spatial deposition of energy by 1-20-eV electrons in molecular hydrogen by a Monte Carlo simulation of the actual trajectories. The energy deposition curve (energy per distance traversed) is quite peaked in the forward direction about the entry point for electrons with energies above the threshold of the electronic states, but the peak decreases and broadens noticeably as the electron energy decreases below 10 eV (threshold for the lowest excitable electronic state of H2). The curve also assumes a very symmetrical shape for energies below 10 eV, indicating the increasing importance of elastic collisions in determining the shape of the curve, although not the mode of energy deposition.

  5. Energy conservation in molecular dynamics simulations of classical systems.

    PubMed

    Toxvaerd, Søren; Heilmann, Ole J; Dyre, Jeppe C

    2012-06-14

    Classical Newtonian dynamics is analytic and the energy of an isolated system is conserved. The energy of such a system, obtained by the discrete "Verlet" algorithm commonly used in molecular dynamics simulations, fluctuates but is conserved in the mean. This is explained by the existence of a "shadow Hamiltonian" H [S. Toxvaerd, Phys. Rev. E 50, 2271 (1994)], i.e., a Hamiltonian close to the original H with the property that the discrete positions of the Verlet algorithm for H lie on the analytic trajectories of H. The shadow Hamiltonian can be obtained from H by an asymptotic expansion in the time step length. Here we use the first non-trivial term in this expansion to obtain an improved estimate of the discrete values of the energy. The investigation is performed for a representative system with Lennard-Jones pair interactions. The simulations show that inclusion of this term reduces the standard deviation of the energy fluctuations by a factor of 100 for typical values of the time step length. Simulations further show that the energy is conserved for at least one hundred million time steps provided the potential and its first four derivatives are continuous at the cutoff. Finally, we show analytically as well as numerically that energy conservation is not sensitive to round-off errors.

  6. Forces on nuclei moving on autoionizing molecular potential energy surfaces.

    PubMed

    Moiseyev, Nimrod

    2017-01-14

    Autoionization of molecular systems occurs in diatomic molecules and in small biochemical systems. Quantum chemistry packages enable calculation of complex potential energy surfaces (CPESs). The imaginary part of the CPES is associated with the autoionization decay rate, which is a function of the molecular structure. Molecular dynamics simulations, within the framework of the Born-Oppenheimer approximation, require the definition of a force field. The ability to calculate the forces on the nuclei in bio-systems when autoionization takes place seems to rely on an understanding of radiative damages in RNA and DNA arising from the release of slow moving electrons which have long de Broglie wavelengths. This work addresses calculation of the real forces on the nuclei moving on the CPES. By using the transformation of the time-dependent Schrödinger equation, previously used by Madelung, we proved that the classical forces on nuclei moving on the CPES correlated with the gradient of the real part of the CPES. It was proved that the force on the nuclei of the metastable molecules is time independent although the probability to detect metastable molecules exponentially decays. The classical force is obtained from the transformed Schrödinger equation when ℏ=0 and the Schrödinger equation is reduced to the classical (Newtonian) equations of motion. The forces on the nuclei regardless on what potential energy surface they move (parent CPES or product real PESs) vary in time due to the autoionization process.

  7. Forces on nuclei moving on autoionizing molecular potential energy surfaces

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Moiseyev, Nimrod

    2017-01-01

    Autoionization of molecular systems occurs in diatomic molecules and in small biochemical systems. Quantum chemistry packages enable calculation of complex potential energy surfaces (CPESs). The imaginary part of the CPES is associated with the autoionization decay rate, which is a function of the molecular structure. Molecular dynamics simulations, within the framework of the Born-Oppenheimer approximation, require the definition of a force field. The ability to calculate the forces on the nuclei in bio-systems when autoionization takes place seems to rely on an understanding of radiative damages in RNA and DNA arising from the release of slow moving electrons which have long de Broglie wavelengths. This work addresses calculation of the real forces on the nuclei moving on the CPES. By using the transformation of the time-dependent Schrödinger equation, previously used by Madelung, we proved that the classical forces on nuclei moving on the CPES correlated with the gradient of the real part of the CPES. It was proved that the force on the nuclei of the metastable molecules is time independent although the probability to detect metastable molecules exponentially decays. The classical force is obtained from the transformed Schrödinger equation when ℏ =0 and the Schrödinger equation is reduced to the classical (Newtonian) equations of motion. The forces on the nuclei regardless on what potential energy surface they move (parent CPES or product real PESs) vary in time due to the autoionization process.

  8. Ecological role of energy taxis in microorganisms.

    PubMed

    Alexandre, Gladys; Greer-Phillips, Suzanne; Zhulin, Igor B

    2004-02-01

    Motile microorganisms rapidly respond to changes in various physico-chemical gradients by directing their motility to more favorable surroundings. Energy generation is one of the most important parameters for the survival of microorganisms in their environment. Therefore it is not surprising that microorganisms are able to monitor changes in the cellular energy generating processes. The signal for this behavioral response, which is called energy taxis, originates within the electron transport system. By coupling energy metabolism and behavior, energy taxis is fine-tuned to the environment a cell finds itself in and allows efficient adaptation to changing conditions that affect cellular energy levels. Thus, energy taxis provides cells with a versatile sensory system that enables them to navigate to niches where energy generation is optimized. This behavior is likely to govern vertical species stratification and the active migration of motile cells in response to shifting gradients of electron donors and/or acceptors which are observed within microbial mats, sediments and soil pores. Energy taxis has been characterized in several species and might be widespread in the microbial world. Genome sequencing revealed that many microorganisms from aquatic and soil environments possess large numbers of chemoreceptors and are likely to be capable of energy taxis. In contrast, species that have a fewer number of chemoreceptors are often found in specific, confined environments, where relatively constant environmental conditions are expected. Future studies focusing on characterizing behavioral responses in species that are adapted to diverse environmental conditions should unravel the molecular mechanisms underlying sensory behavior in general and energy taxis in particular. Such knowledge is critical to a better understanding of the ecological role of energy taxis.

  9. Molecular ion sources for low energy semiconductor ion implantation (invited)

    SciTech Connect

    Hershcovitch, A.; Gushenets, V. I.; Bugaev, A. S.; Oks, E. M.; Vizir, A.; Yushkov, G. Yu.; Seleznev, D. N.; Kulevoy, T. V.; Kozlov, A.; Kropachev, G. N.; Kuibeda, R. P.; Minaev, S.; Dugin, S.; Alexeyenko, O.

    2016-02-15

    Smaller semiconductors require shallow, low energy ion implantation, resulting space charge effects, which reduced beam currents and production rates. To increase production rates, molecular ions are used. Boron and phosphorous (or arsenic) implantation is needed for P-type and N-type semiconductors, respectively. Carborane, which is the most stable molecular boron ion leaves unacceptable carbon residue on extraction grids. A self-cleaning carborane acid compound (C{sub 4}H{sub 12}B{sub 10}O{sub 4}) was synthesized and utilized in the ITEP Bernas ion source resulting in large carborane ion output, without carbon residue. Pure gaseous processes are desired to enable rapid switch among ion species. Molecular phosphorous was generated by introducing phosphine in dissociators via 4PH{sub 3} = P{sub 4} + 6H{sub 2}; generated molecular phosphorous in a pure gaseous process was then injected into the HCEI Calutron-Bernas ion source, from which P{sub 4}{sup +} ion beams were extracted. Results from devices and some additional concepts are described.

  10. Calculating Free Energies Using Scaled-Force Molecular Dynamics Algorithm

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Darve, Eric; Wilson, Micahel A.; Pohorille, Andrew

    2000-01-01

    One common objective of molecular simulations in chemistry and biology is to calculate the free energy difference between different states of the system of interest. Examples of problems that have such an objective are calculations of receptor-ligand or protein-drug interactions, associations of molecules in response to hydrophobic, and electrostatic interactions or partition of molecules between immiscible liquids. Another common objective is to describe evolution of the system towards a low energy (possibly the global minimum energy), 'native' state. Perhaps the best example of such a problem is folding of proteins or short RNA molecules. Both types of problems share the same difficulty. Often, different states of the system are separated by high energy barriers, which implies that transitions between these states are rare events. This, in turn, can greatly impede exploration of phase space. In some instances this can lead to 'quasi non-ergodicity', whereby a part of phase space is inaccessible on timescales of the simulation. A host of strategies has been developed to improve efficiency of sampling the phase space. For example, some Monte Carlo techniques involve large steps which move the system between low-energy regions in phase space without the need for sampling the configurations corresponding to energy barriers (J-walking). Most strategies, however, rely on modifying probabilities of sampling low and high-energy regions in phase space such that transitions between states of interest are encouraged. Perhaps the simplest implementation of this strategy is to increase the temperature of the system. This approach was successfully used to identify denaturation pathways in several proteins, but it is clearly not applicable to protein folding. It is also not a successful method for determining free energy differences. Finally, the approach is likely to fail for systems with co-existing phases, such as water-membrane systems, because it may lead to spontaneous

  11. Calculating Free Energies Using Scaled-Force Molecular Dynamics Algorithm

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Darve, Eric; Wilson, Micahel A.; Pohorille, Andrew

    2000-01-01

    One common objective of molecular simulations in chemistry and biology is to calculate the free energy difference between different states of the system of interest. Examples of problems that have such an objective are calculations of receptor-ligand or protein-drug interactions, associations of molecules in response to hydrophobic, and electrostatic interactions or partition of molecules between immiscible liquids. Another common objective is to describe evolution of the system towards a low energy (possibly the global minimum energy), 'native' state. Perhaps the best example of such a problem is folding of proteins or short RNA molecules. Both types of problems share the same difficulty. Often, different states of the system are separated by high energy barriers, which implies that transitions between these states are rare events. This, in turn, can greatly impede exploration of phase space. In some instances this can lead to 'quasi non-ergodicity', whereby a part of phase space is inaccessible on timescales of the simulation. A host of strategies has been developed to improve efficiency of sampling the phase space. For example, some Monte Carlo techniques involve large steps which move the system between low-energy regions in phase space without the need for sampling the configurations corresponding to energy barriers (J-walking). Most strategies, however, rely on modifying probabilities of sampling low and high-energy regions in phase space such that transitions between states of interest are encouraged. Perhaps the simplest implementation of this strategy is to increase the temperature of the system. This approach was successfully used to identify denaturation pathways in several proteins, but it is clearly not applicable to protein folding. It is also not a successful method for determining free energy differences. Finally, the approach is likely to fail for systems with co-existing phases, such as water-membrane systems, because it may lead to spontaneous

  12. Quantum mechanics/molecular mechanics dual Hamiltonian free energy perturbation.

    PubMed

    Polyak, Iakov; Benighaus, Tobias; Boulanger, Eliot; Thiel, Walter

    2013-08-14

    The dual Hamiltonian free energy perturbation (DH-FEP) method is designed for accurate and efficient evaluation of the free energy profile of chemical reactions in quantum mechanical/molecular mechanical (QM/MM) calculations. In contrast to existing QM/MM FEP variants, the QM region is not kept frozen during sampling, but all degrees of freedom except for the reaction coordinate are sampled. In the DH-FEP scheme, the sampling is done by semiempirical QM/MM molecular dynamics (MD), while the perturbation energy differences are evaluated from high-level QM/MM single-point calculations at regular intervals, skipping a pre-defined number of MD sampling steps. After validating our method using an analytic model potential with an exactly known solution, we report a QM/MM DH-FEP study of the enzymatic reaction catalyzed by chorismate mutase. We suggest guidelines for QM/MM DH-FEP calculations and default values for the required computational parameters. In the case of chorismate mutase, we apply the DH-FEP approach in combination with a single one-dimensional reaction coordinate and with a two-dimensional collective coordinate (two individual distances), with superior results for the latter choice.

  13. Quantum mechanics/molecular mechanics dual Hamiltonian free energy perturbation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Polyak, Iakov; Benighaus, Tobias; Boulanger, Eliot; Thiel, Walter

    2013-08-01

    The dual Hamiltonian free energy perturbation (DH-FEP) method is designed for accurate and efficient evaluation of the free energy profile of chemical reactions in quantum mechanical/molecular mechanical (QM/MM) calculations. In contrast to existing QM/MM FEP variants, the QM region is not kept frozen during sampling, but all degrees of freedom except for the reaction coordinate are sampled. In the DH-FEP scheme, the sampling is done by semiempirical QM/MM molecular dynamics (MD), while the perturbation energy differences are evaluated from high-level QM/MM single-point calculations at regular intervals, skipping a pre-defined number of MD sampling steps. After validating our method using an analytic model potential with an exactly known solution, we report a QM/MM DH-FEP study of the enzymatic reaction catalyzed by chorismate mutase. We suggest guidelines for QM/MM DH-FEP calculations and default values for the required computational parameters. In the case of chorismate mutase, we apply the DH-FEP approach in combination with a single one-dimensional reaction coordinate and with a two-dimensional collective coordinate (two individual distances), with superior results for the latter choice.

  14. Electronic excitation of molecular hydrogen by low-energy electrons

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hargreaves, Leigh

    2016-09-01

    Molecular hydrogen is the most abundant element in the universe, particularly in interstellar plasmas such as atmospheres of gas giant planets and stars. Electron collision data for hydrogen is critical to interpreting the spectroscopy of interstellar objects, as well as being of applied value for modelling technological plasmas. Hydrogen is also fundamentally interesting, as while highly accurate wave functions for this simple molecule are available, providing an accurate, ab initio, treatment the collision dynamics has proven challenging, on account of the need to have a complete description of channel coupling and polarization effects. To date, no single theoretical approach has been able to replicate experimental results across all transitions and incident energies, while the experimental database that is available is far from complete and not all available measurements are in satisfactory agreement. In this talk, we present differential and integral cross section measurements for electronic excitation cross sections for molecular hydrogen by low-energy electron impact. The data were measured at incident energies below 20eV, using a well-tested crossed beam apparatus and employing a moveable gas source approach to ensure that background contributions to the scattering are accurately accounted for. These measurements are compared with new theoretical results employing the convergent close coupling approach.

  15. Photochemical energy conversion: from molecular dyads to solar cells.

    PubMed

    Durrant, James R; Haque, Saif A; Palomares, Emilio

    2006-08-21

    Photochemical approaches to solar energy conversion are currently making rapid progress, increasing not only academic but also commercial interest in molecular-based photovoltaic solar cells. This progress has been achieved not only by increased understanding of the physics and physical chemistry of device function but also through advances in chemical and materials synthesis and processing, which now allows the design and fabrication of increasingly sophisticated device structures organised on the nanometer length scale. In this feature article, we review some progress in this field, focusing in particular upon the electron-transfer dynamics which underlie the function of dye-sensitised, nanocrystalline solar cells. The article starts by building upon the parallels between the function of such devices and the function of simple donor/acceptor molecular systems in solution. We then go on to discuss the optimisation of device function, and in particular the use of self-assembly-based strategies to control interfacial electron-transfer kinetics.

  16. Single-molecule fluorescence resonance energy transfer in molecular biology.

    PubMed

    Sasmal, Dibyendu K; Pulido, Laura E; Kasal, Shan; Huang, Jun

    2016-12-08

    Single-molecule fluorescence resonance energy transfer (smFRET) is a powerful technique for studying the conformation dynamics and interactions of individual biomolecules. In this review, we describe the concept and principle of smFRET, illustrate general instrumentation and microscopy settings for experiments, and discuss the methods and algorithms for data analysis. Subsequently, we review applications of smFRET in protein conformational changes, ion channel open-close properties, receptor-ligand interactions, nucleic acid structure regulation, vesicle fusion, and force induced conformational dynamics. Finally, we discuss the main limitations of smFRET in molecular biology.

  17. Neural Signaling Metabolites May Modulate Energy Use in Hibernation.

    PubMed

    Drew, Kelly L; Frare, Carla; Rice, Sarah A

    2017-01-01

    Despite an epidemic in obesity and metabolic syndrome limited means exist to effect adiposity or metabolic rate other than life style changes. Here we review evidence that neural signaling metabolites may modulate thermoregulatory pathways and offer novel means to fine tune energy use. We extend prior reviews on mechanisms that regulate thermogenesis and energy use in hibernation by focusing primarily on the neural signaling metabolites adenosine, AMP and glutamate.

  18. Equiparatition of energy for turbulent astrophysical fluids: Accounting for the unseen energy in molecular clouds

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Zweibel, Ellen G.; Mckee, Christopher F.

    1995-01-01

    Molecular clouds are observed to be partially supported by turbulent pressure. The kinetic energy of the turbulence is directly measurable, but the potential energy, which consists of magnetic, thermal, and gravitational potential energy, is largly unseen. We have extended previous results on equipartition between kinetic and potential energy to show that it is likely to be a very good approximation in molecular clouds. We have used two separate approaches to demonstrate this result: For small-amplitude perturbations of a static equilibrium, we have used the energy principle analysis of Bernstein et al. (1958); this derivation applies to perturbations of arbitary wavelength. To treat perturbations of a nonstatic equilibrium, we have used the Lagrangian analysis of Dewar (1970); this analysis applies only to short-wavelength perturbations. Both analysis assume conservation of energy. Wave damping has only a small effect on equipartition if the wave frequency is small compared to the neutral-ion collision frequency; for the particular case we considered, radiative losses have no effect on equipartition. These results are then incorporated in a simple way into analyses of cloud equilibrium and global stability. We discuss the effect of Alfvenic turbulence on the Jeans mass and show that it has little effect on the magnetic critical mass.

  19. Molecular understanding of mutagenicity using potential energy methods

    SciTech Connect

    Broyde, S.; Shapiro, R.

    1992-07-01

    Our objective, has been to elucidate on a molecular level, at atomic resolution, the structures of DNAs modified by 2-aminofluorene and its N-acetyl derivative, 2-acetylaminofluorene (AAF). The underlying hypothesis is that DNA replicates with reduced fidelity when its normal right-handed B-structure is altered, and one result is a higher mutation rate. This change in structure may occur normally at a low incidence, for example by the formation of hairpin loops in appropriate sequences, but it may be enhanced greatly after covalent modification by a mutagenic substance. We use computational methods and have been able to incorporate the first data from NMR studies in our calculations. Computational approaches are important because x-ray and spectroscopic studies have not succeeded in producing atomic resolution views of mutagen and carcinogen-oligonucleotide adducts. The specific methods that we employ are minimized potential energy calculations using the torsion angle space molecular mechanics program DUPLEX to yield static views. Molecular dynamics simulations, with full solvent and salt, of the important static structures are carried out with the program AMBER; this yields mobile views in a medium that mimics the natural aqueous environment of the cell as well as can be done with current available computing resources.

  20. Intramolecular vibrational energy redistribution in bridged azulene-anthracene compounds: Ballistic energy transport through molecular chains

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Schwarzer, D.; Kutne, P.; Schröder, C.; Troe, J.

    2004-07-01

    Intramolecular vibrational energy flow in excited bridged azulene-anthracene compounds is investigated by time-resolved pump-probe laser spectroscopy. The bridges consist of molecular chains and are of the type (CH2)m with m up to 6 as well as (CH2OCH2)n (n=1,2) and CH2SCH2. After light absorption into the azulene S1 band and subsequent fast internal conversion, excited molecules are formed where the vibrational energy is localized at the azulene side. The vibrational energy transfer through the molecular bridge to the anthracene side and, finally, to the surrounding medium is followed by probing the red edge of the azulene S3 absorption band at 300 nm and/or the anthracene S1 absorption band at 400 nm. In order to separate the time scales for intramolecular and intermolecular energy transfer, most of the experiments were performed in supercritical xenon where vibrational energy transfer to the bath is comparably slow. The intramolecular equilibration proceeds in two steps. About 15%-20% of the excitation energy leaves the azulene side within a short period of 300 fs. This component accompanies the intramolecular vibrational energy redistribution (IVR) within the azulene chromophore and it is caused by dephasing of normal modes contributing to the initial local excitation of the azulene side and extending over large parts of the molecule. Later, IVR in the whole molecule takes place transferring vibrational energy from the azulene through the bridge to the anthracene side and thereby leading to microcanonical equilibrium. The corresponding time constants τIVR for short bridges increase with the chain length. For longer bridges consisting of more than three elements, however, τIVR is constant at around 4-5 ps. Comparison with molecular dynamics simulations suggests that the coupling of these chains to the two chromophores limits the rate of intramolecular vibrational energy transfer. Inside the bridges the energy transport is essentially ballistic and, therefore

  1. Effects of the initial molecular states in a high-energy scattering of molecular beams

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Leonas, V. B.; Rodionov, I. D.

    Research is reported on direct study of potential energy surfaces (PES) by measuring the vibrational-rotational transition differential cross sections. A laser fluorescence technique is proving to be promising in gaining such data in experiments with molecular beams (Leonas and Rodionov, 1982, in Russian). Since the laser fluorescence technique is still being developed, there is obviously interest in extracting information on PES from the data without selection (particularly of final states). For this, one needs dynamic manifestations of the components of the molecular PES in the state-averaged scattering cross sections. The theoretical prediction and experimental discovery of such an effect in the differential cross section averaged by final states are discussed for small scattering angles corresponding to interaction energies of 1 to 20 eV. The vibrational rainbow (VR) effect is explained by the nonadiabatic vibrational transitions influencing the scattering dynamics during the collision time. In the case of experiments with selection, the intramolecular motion effect on the transition cross section are also of interest because the absence of such an effect leads to an invariancy of experimental data so that they yield less information. Data are treated on the total rotational transition cross sections which have been recently published by Itoh, Kobayashi, and Kaneko (1981), as experimental observations of intramolecular motion effects in high-energy scattering.

  2. Harnessing Reversible Electronic Energy Transfer: From Molecular Dyads to Molecular Machines.

    PubMed

    Denisov, Sergey A; Yu, Shinlin; Pozzo, Jean-Luc; Jonusauskas, Gediminas; McClenaghan, Nathan D

    2016-06-17

    Reversible electronic energy transfer (REET) may be instilled in bi-/multichromophoric molecule-based systems, following photoexcitation, upon judicious structural integration of matched chromophores. This leads to a new set of photophysical properties for the ensemble, which can be fully characterized by steady-state and time-resolved spectroscopic methods. Herein, we take a comprehensive look at progress in the development of this type of supermolecule in the last five years, which has seen systems evolve from covalently tethered dyads to synthetic molecular machines, exemplified by two different pseudorotaxanes. Indeed, REET holds promise in the control of movement in molecular machines, their assembly/disassembly, as well as in charge separation. © 2016 WILEY-VCH Verlag GmbH & Co. KGaA, Weinheim.

  3. Molecular potential energy surfaces for interstellar chemistry and fusion applications

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Braams, Bastiaan J.; Huang, Xinchuan; Jin, Zhong; Xie, Zhen; Zhang, Xiubin; Bowman, Joel M.; Sharma, Amit Raj; Scheider, Ralf

    2006-04-01

    In the Born-Oppenheimer approximation the electronic Schr"odinger equation is solved given the nuclear positions as parameters, and this defines the potential energy surface. We have used computational invariant theory and the MAGMA computer algebra system as an aid to develop representations for the potential energy and dipole moment surfaces that are fully invariant under permutations of like nuclei, extending an approach that for 3-body and 4-body systems has a long history, e.g. [J. N. Murrell et al. Molecular Potential Energy Functions, Wiley, 1984]. A many-body (cluster) expansion is used to describe reaction complexes. The methods have been applied in an almost routine way for systems of up to 7 nuclei, including several molecules that are of interest for interstellar chemistry and for the issue of hydrocarbon breakdown in fusion edge plasma: H5^+, CH5, CH5^+, C2H3^+, and their fragments, with C2H5^+ on the way. The mathematical and computional methods and the hydrocarbon applications will be presented.

  4. Ab initio molecular dynamics calculations of ion hydration free energies.

    PubMed

    Leung, Kevin; Rempe, Susan B; von Lilienfeld, O Anatole

    2009-05-28

    We apply ab initio molecular dynamics (AIMD) methods in conjunction with the thermodynamic integration or "lambda-path" technique to compute the intrinsic hydration free energies of Li(+), Cl(-), and Ag(+) ions. Using the Perdew-Burke-Ernzerhof functional, adapting methods developed for classical force field applications, and with consistent assumptions about surface potential (phi) contributions, we obtain absolute AIMD hydration free energies (DeltaG(hyd)) within a few kcal/mol, or better than 4%, of Tissandier et al.'s [J. Phys. Chem. A 102, 7787 (1998)] experimental values augmented with the SPC/E water model phi predictions. The sums of Li(+)/Cl(-) and Ag(+)/Cl(-) AIMD DeltaG(hyd), which are not affected by surface potentials, are within 2.6% and 1.2 % of experimental values, respectively. We also report the free energy changes associated with the transition metal ion redox reaction Ag(+)+Ni(+)-->Ag+Ni(2+) in water. The predictions for this reaction suggest that existing estimates of DeltaG(hyd) for unstable radiolysis intermediates such as Ni(+) may need to be extensively revised.

  5. Calculations of Solvation Free Energy through Energy Reweighting from Molecular Mechanics to Quantum Mechanics.

    PubMed

    Jia, Xiangyu; Wang, Meiting; Shao, Yihan; König, Gerhard; Brooks, Bernard R; Zhang, John Z H; Mei, Ye

    2016-02-09

    In this work, the solvation free energies of 20 organic molecules from the 4th Statistical Assessment of the Modeling of Proteins and Ligands (SAMPL4) have been calculated. The sampling of phase space is carried out at a molecular mechanical level, and the associated free energy changes are estimated using the Bennett Acceptance Ratio (BAR). Then the quantum mechanical (QM) corrections are computed through the indirect Non-Boltzmann Bennett's acceptance ratio (NBB) or the thermodynamics perturbation (TP) method. We show that BAR+TP gives a minimum analytic variance for the calculated solvation free energy at the Gaussian limit and performs slightly better than NBB in practice. Furthermore, the expense of the QM calculations in TP is only half of that in NBB. We also show that defining the biasing potential as the difference of the solute-solvent interaction energy, instead of the total energy, can converge the calculated solvation free energies much faster but possibly to different values. Based on the experimental solvation free energies which have been published before, it is discovered in this study that BLYP yields better results than MP2 and some other later functionals such as B3LYP, M06-2X, and ωB97X-D.

  6. A molecular view of DNA-conjugated nanoparticle association energies

    SciTech Connect

    Lequieu, Joshua P.; Hinckley, Daniel M.; de Pablo, Juan J.

    2015-03-14

    Nanoparticles functionalized with short sequences of DNA represent a promising platform for customizable self assembly. Though much recent research has focused on the phase behavior and assembly of these structures, little has been done to precisely characterize the pairwise interaction between particles. Here we present a detailed calculation of the association between DNA-nanoparticle conjugates using 3SPN. 2, a coarse-grained model of DNA that accounts for molecular structure and base-pairing. We compare our results to those obtained experimentally using mm sized particles and analyze the free energy surfaces that characterize interparticle hybridization. Next, we study the importance of three-body effects and their impact on particle association and melting. Lastly, we explore the observation by Park et al. [Nature, 451, 553 (2008)] that DNA-nanoparticle crystallization can be inhibited by the deletion of a single nucleotide. Using our model, we suggest that the role of this nucleotide is to disrupt frustration.

  7. Exploring the free energy surface using ab initio molecular dynamics

    SciTech Connect

    Samanta, Amit; Morales, Miguel A.; Schwegler, Eric

    2016-04-22

    Efficient exploration of the configuration space and identification of metastable structures are challenging from both computational as well as algorithmic perspectives. Here, we extend the recently proposed orderparameter aided temperature accelerated sampling schemes to efficiently and systematically explore free energy surfaces, and search for metastable states and reaction pathways within the framework of density functional theory based molecular dynamics. The sampling method is applied to explore the relevant parts of the configuration space in prototypical materials SiO2 and Ti to identify the different metastable structures corresponding to different phases in these materials. In addition, we use the string method in collective variables to study the melting pathways in the high pressure cotunnite phase of SiO2 and the hcp to fcc phase transition in Ti.

  8. Exploring the free energy surface using ab initio molecular dynamics

    SciTech Connect

    Samanta, Amit; Morales, Miguel A.; Schwegler, Eric

    2016-04-22

    Efficient exploration of the configuration space and identification of metastable structures are challenging from both computational as well as algorithmic perspectives. Here, we extend the recently proposed orderparameter aided temperature accelerated sampling schemes to efficiently and systematically explore free energy surfaces, and search for metastable states and reaction pathways within the framework of density functional theory based molecular dynamics. The sampling method is applied to explore the relevant parts of the configuration space in prototypical materials SiO2 and Ti to identify the different metastable structures corresponding to different phases in these materials. In addition, we use the string method in collective variables to study the melting pathways in the high pressure cotunnite phase of SiO2 and the hcp to fcc phase transition in Ti.

  9. Exploring the free energy surface using ab initio molecular dynamics

    DOE PAGES

    Samanta, Amit; Morales, Miguel A.; Schwegler, Eric

    2016-04-22

    Efficient exploration of the configuration space and identification of metastable structures are challenging from both computational as well as algorithmic perspectives. Here, we extend the recently proposed orderparameter aided temperature accelerated sampling schemes to efficiently and systematically explore free energy surfaces, and search for metastable states and reaction pathways within the framework of density functional theory based molecular dynamics. The sampling method is applied to explore the relevant parts of the configuration space in prototypical materials SiO2 and Ti to identify the different metastable structures corresponding to different phases in these materials. In addition, we use the string method inmore » collective variables to study the melting pathways in the high pressure cotunnite phase of SiO2 and the hcp to fcc phase transition in Ti.« less

  10. Footprinting molecular electrostatic potential surfaces for calculation of solvation energies.

    PubMed

    Calero, Christian Solis; Farwer, Jochen; Gardiner, Eleanor J; Hunter, Christopher A; Mackey, Mark; Scuderi, Serena; Thompson, Stuart; Vinter, Jeremy G

    2013-11-07

    A liquid is composed of an ensemble of molecules that populate a large number of different states, so calculation of the solvation energy of a molecule in solution requires a method for summing the interactions with the environment over all of these states. The surface site interaction model for the properties of liquids at equilibrium (SSIMPLE) simplifies the surface of a molecule to a discrete number of specific interaction sites (SSIPs). The thermodynamic properties of these interaction sites can be characterised experimentally, for example, through measurement of association constants for the formation of simple complexes that feature a single H-bonding interaction. Correlation of experimentally determined solution phase H-bond parameters with gas phase ab initio calculations of maxima and minima on molecular electrostatic potential surfaces (MEPS) provides a method for converting gas phase calculations on isolated molecules to parameters that can be used to estimate solution phase interaction free energies. This approach has been generalised using a footprinting technique that converts an MEPS into a discrete set of SSIPs (each described by a polar interaction parameter, εi). These SSIPs represent the molecular recognition properties of the entire surface of the molecule. For example, water is described by four SSIPs, two H-bond donor sites and two H-bond acceptor sites. A liquid mixture is described as an ensemble of SSIPs that represent the components of the mixture at appropriate concentrations. Individual SSIPs are assumed to be independent, so speciation of SSIP contacts can be calculated based on properties of the individual SSIP interactions, which are given by the sum of a polar (εiεj) and a non-polar (E(vdW)) interaction term. Results are presented for calculation the free energies of transfer of a range of organic molecules from the pure liquid into water, from the pure liquid into n-hexadecane, from n-hexadecane into water, from n-octanol into

  11. Photoinduced Charge and Energy Transfer Processes in Molecular Aggregates

    SciTech Connect

    John F. Endicott

    2009-10-20

    This project involved the experimental probing of the electronic excited states generated by photoinduced (center-to-center) electron and energy transfer processes in several classes of transition metal donor/acceptor (D/A) complexes. Some of the general properties inferred from these studies should be useful in the design of new systems for energy conversion applications. Pursuit of the project goals has involved the determination of electron transfer efficiencies and the detailed study of variations in the electronic spectra of D/A complexes. This has resulted in the study of some very fundamental issues of photoinduced charge transfer and the identification of some of the constraints on its efficiency. The experimental studies of the competition between the degradative non-radiative unimolecular relaxation of transition metal excited states and their transfer of charge from these excited states to external acceptors have involved a range of techniques such as transient decay kinetics, photoacoustic calorimetry and transient or stationary state spectroscopy. The substrates synthesized for these studies were selected to provide model systems, or series of model systems to probe the validity of models of electronic excited states and their reactivity. The work during the last few years has focused largely, but not exclusively, on the use of emission spectral band shapes to probe the properties of charge transfer (CT) excited states. Bandshape variations are one of the very few approaches for systematically probing electronic excited states and good band shape resolution is necessary in order to gain information about the structural variations that correlate with excited state reactivity. Differences in molecular structure correlate with differences in chemical reactivity, and the variations in emission bandshapes are well known to relate to variations in the molecular structural differences between the excited and ground electronic states. However, it is has been

  12. Origin of non-Gaussian site energy disorder in molecular aggregates

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rancova, Olga; Jakučionis, Mantas; Valkunas, Leonas; Abramavicius, Darius

    2017-04-01

    Gaussian site energy disorder is an ad hoc concept usually implemented in simulations of excitation dynamics in molecular systems. In this letter we suggest a mechanism which may cause correlated static energy disorder in a broad range of molecular systems. Our approach leads to non-Gaussian site energy distribution, which strongly affects statistical properties of exciton wavefunctions and consequently changes material functional characteristics.

  13. Molecular mimicry of photosynthetic energy and electron transfer

    SciTech Connect

    Gust, D.; Moore, T.A.; Moore, A.L. )

    1993-04-01

    Proper application of reaction design considerations can yield artificial photosynthetic devices which credibility mimic the three natural photochemical processes. One approach is to use pigments and electron donors and acceptors related to those found in natural photosynthesis (and thus presumably optimal for that system), but to replace the protein with covalent bonds as an organizing precept. Molecular pentads described herein exemplify the success of this approach. At the heart of these molecules, are two covalently linked synthetic porphyrin moieties (P-P). One of these models for chlorophyll is attached to a carotenoid polyene (C), whereas the other is linked to a rigid diquinone (Q-Q). As discussed later in this paper, excitation of such a pentad is followed by photoinitiated electron transfer steps which ultimately give a C[sup [center dot]+]-P-P-Q-Q[sup [center dot]-] charge-separated state. Depending upon the structure of the pentad and the conditions, these states are formed with quantum yields of up to 0.83, have lifetimes approaching 0.5 ms, and store about one-half of the energy of the exciting singlet state. Related photosynthesis mimics display singlet-singlet energy transfer from carotenoid polyenes to porphyrins and among porphyrin chromophores, and rapid quenching of porphyrin triplet states by attached carotenoids. How have the structures of these and other successful artificial reaction centers evolved, and what will be the next steps in their development The authors will address these questions from the point of view of photoinitiated electron transfer, and then singlet and triplet energy transfer will briefly be considered. 37 refs., 4 figs.

  14. Diffusion energy profiles in silica mesoporous molecular sieves modelled with the fragment molecular orbital method

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Roskop, Luke; Fedorov, Dmitri G.; Gordon, Mark S.

    2013-07-01

    The fragment molecular orbital (FMO) method is used to model truncated portions of mesoporous silica nanoparticle (MSN) pores. The application of the FMO/RHF (restricted Hartree-Fock) method to MCM-41 type MSNs is discussed and an error analysis is given. The FMO/RHF method is shown to reliably approximate the RHF energy (error ∼0.2 kcal/mol), dipole moment (error ∼0.2 debye) and energy gradient (root mean square [RMS] error ∼0.2 × 10-3 a.u./bohr). Several FMO fragmentation schemes are employed to provide guidance for future applications to MSN models. An MSN pore model is functionalised with (phenyl)propyl substituents and the diffusion barrier for benzene passing through the pore is computed by the FMO/RHF-D method with the Grimme dispersion correction (RHF-D). For the reaction coordinates examined here, the maximum FMO/RHF-D interaction energies range from -0.3 to -5.8 kcal/mol.

  15. Molecular clock integration of brown adipose tissue formation and function

    PubMed Central

    Nam, Deokhwa; Yechoor, Vijay K.; Ma, Ke

    2016-01-01

    Abstract The circadian clock is an essential time-keeping mechanism that entrains internal physiology to environmental cues. Despite the well-established link between the molecular clock and metabolic homeostasis, an intimate interplay between the clock machinery and the metabolically active brown adipose tissue (BAT) is only emerging. Recently, we came to appreciate that the formation and metabolic functions of BAT, a key organ for body temperature maintenance, are under an orchestrated circadian clock regulation. Two complementary studies from our group uncover that the cell-intrinsic clock machinery exerts concerted control of brown adipogenesis with consequent impacts on adaptive thermogenesis, which adds a previously unappreciated temporal dimension to the regulatory mechanisms governing BAT development and function. The essential clock transcriptional activator, Bmal1, suppresses adipocyte lineage commitment and differentiation, whereas the clock repressor, Rev-erbα, promotes these processes. This newly discovered temporal mechanism in fine-tuning BAT thermogenic capacity may enable energy utilization and body temperature regulation in accordance with external timing signals during development and functional recruitment. Given the important role of BAT in whole-body metabolic homeostasis, pharmacological interventions targeting the BAT-modulatory activities of the clock circuit may offer new avenues for the prevention and treatment of metabolic disorders, particularly those associated with circadian dysregulation. PMID:27385482

  16. Elucidating energy and electron transfer dynamics within molecular assemblies for solar energy conversion

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Morseth, Zachary Aaron

    The use of sunlight to make chemical fuels (i.e. solar fuels) is an attractive approach in the quest to develop sustainable energy sources. Using nature as a guide, assemblies for artificial photosynthesis will need to perform multiple functions. They will need to be able to harvest light across a broad region of the solar spectrum, transport excited-state energy to charge-separation sites, and then transport and store redox equivalents for use in the catalytic reactions that produce chemical fuels. This multifunctional behavior will require the assimilation of multiple components into a single macromolecular system. A wide variety of different architectures including porphyrin arrays, peptides, dendrimers, and polymers have been explored, with each design posing unique challenges. Polymer assemblies are attractive due to their relative ease of production and facile synthetic modification. However, their disordered nature gives rise to stochastic dynamics not present in more ordered assemblies. The rational design of assemblies requires a detailed understanding of the energy and electron transfer events that follow light absorption, which can occur on timescales ranging from femtoseconds to hundreds of microseconds, necessitating the use of sophisticated techniques. We have used a combination of time-resolved absorption and emission spectroscopies with observation times that span nine orders of magnitude to follow the excited-state evolution within single-site and polymer-based molecular assemblies. We complement experimental observations with electronic structure calculations, molecular dynamics simulations, and kinetic modeling to develop a microscopic view of these dynamics. This thesis provides an overview of work on single-site molecular assemblies and polymers decorated with pendant chromophores, both in solution and on surfaces. This work was made possible through extensive collaboration with Dr. Kirk Schanze's and Dr. John Reynolds' research groups who

  17. Emissive Molecular Aggregates and Energy Migration in Luminescent Solar Concentrators.

    PubMed

    Banal, James L; Zhang, Bolong; Jones, David J; Ghiggino, Kenneth P; Wong, Wallace W H

    2017-01-17

    of chromophores exhibiting aggregation-induced emission (AIE) behavior are attractive candidates for LSC applications. Strategic application of AIE chromophores has led to the development of the first organic-based transparent solar concentrator that harvests UV light as well as the demonstration of reabsorption reduction by taking advantage of energy migration processes between chromophores. Further developments led us to the application of perylene diimides using an energy migration/energy transfer approach. To prevent concentration quenching, a molecularly insulated perylene diimide with bulky substituents attached to the imide positions was designed and synthesized. By combining the insulated perylene diimide with a commercial perylene dye as an energy donor-acceptor emitter pair, detrimental luminescence reabsorption was reduced while achieving a high chromophore concentration for efficient light absorption. This Account reviews and reinspects some of our recent work and the improvements in the field of LSCs.

  18. Energy landscape of LeuT from molecular simulations

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gur, Mert; Zomot, Elia; Cheng, Mary Hongying; Bahar, Ivet

    2015-12-01

    The bacterial sodium-coupled leucine transporter (LeuT) has been broadly used as a structural model for understanding the structure-dynamics-function of mammalian neurotransmitter transporters as well as other solute carriers that share the same fold (LeuT fold), as the first member of the family crystallographically resolved in multiple states: outward-facing open, outward-facing occluded, and inward-facing open. Yet, a complete picture of the energy landscape of (sub)states visited along the LeuT transport cycle has been elusive. In an attempt to visualize the conformational spectrum of LeuT, we performed extensive simulations of LeuT dimer dynamics in the presence of substrate (Ala or Leu) and co-transported Na+ ions, in explicit membrane and water. We used both conventional molecular dynamics (MD) simulations (with Anton supercomputing machine) and a recently introduced method, collective MD, that takes advantage of collective modes of motions predicted by the anisotropic network model. Free energy landscapes constructed based on ˜40 μs trajectories reveal multiple substates occluded to the extracellular (EC) and/or intracellular (IC) media, varying in the levels of exposure of LeuT to EC or IC vestibules. The IC-facing transmembrane (TM) helical segment TM1a shows an opening, albeit to a smaller extent and in a slightly different direction than that observed in the inward-facing open crystal structure. The study provides insights into the spectrum of conformational substates and paths accessible to LeuT and highlights the differences between Ala- and Leu-bound substates.

  19. Energy landscape of LeuT from molecular simulations.

    PubMed

    Gur, Mert; Zomot, Elia; Cheng, Mary Hongying; Bahar, Ivet

    2015-12-28

    The bacterial sodium-coupled leucine transporter (LeuT) has been broadly used as a structural model for understanding the structure-dynamics-function of mammalian neurotransmitter transporters as well as other solute carriers that share the same fold (LeuT fold), as the first member of the family crystallographically resolved in multiple states: outward-facing open, outward-facing occluded, and inward-facing open. Yet, a complete picture of the energy landscape of (sub)states visited along the LeuT transport cycle has been elusive. In an attempt to visualize the conformational spectrum of LeuT, we performed extensive simulations of LeuT dimer dynamics in the presence of substrate (Ala or Leu) and co-transported Na(+) ions, in explicit membrane and water. We used both conventional molecular dynamics (MD) simulations (with Anton supercomputing machine) and a recently introduced method, collective MD, that takes advantage of collective modes of motions predicted by the anisotropic network model. Free energy landscapes constructed based on ∼40 μs trajectories reveal multiple substates occluded to the extracellular (EC) and/or intracellular (IC) media, varying in the levels of exposure of LeuT to EC or IC vestibules. The IC-facing transmembrane (TM) helical segment TM1a shows an opening, albeit to a smaller extent and in a slightly different direction than that observed in the inward-facing open crystal structure. The study provides insights into the spectrum of conformational substates and paths accessible to LeuT and highlights the differences between Ala- and Leu-bound substates.

  20. Energy landscape of LeuT from molecular simulations

    PubMed Central

    Gur, Mert; Zomot, Elia; Cheng, Mary Hongying; Bahar, Ivet

    2015-01-01

    The bacterial sodium-coupled leucine transporter (LeuT) has been broadly used as a structural model for understanding the structure-dynamics-function of mammalian neurotransmitter transporters as well as other solute carriers that share the same fold (LeuT fold), as the first member of the family crystallographically resolved in multiple states: outward-facing open, outward-facing occluded, and inward-facing open. Yet, a complete picture of the energy landscape of (sub)states visited along the LeuT transport cycle has been elusive. In an attempt to visualize the conformational spectrum of LeuT, we performed extensive simulations of LeuT dimer dynamics in the presence of substrate (Ala or Leu) and co-transported Na+ ions, in explicit membrane and water. We used both conventional molecular dynamics (MD) simulations (with Anton supercomputing machine) and a recently introduced method, collective MD, that takes advantage of collective modes of motions predicted by the anisotropic network model. Free energy landscapes constructed based on ∼40 μs trajectories reveal multiple substates occluded to the extracellular (EC) and/or intracellular (IC) media, varying in the levels of exposure of LeuT to EC or IC vestibules. The IC-facing transmembrane (TM) helical segment TM1a shows an opening, albeit to a smaller extent and in a slightly different direction than that observed in the inward-facing open crystal structure. The study provides insights into the spectrum of conformational substates and paths accessible to LeuT and highlights the differences between Ala- and Leu-bound substates. PMID:26723619

  1. Managing molecular diversity.

    PubMed

    Perez, Juan J

    2005-02-01

    The present work provides an overview of the different methods used in molecular diversity analysis. Issues like identifying voids in proprietary databases, reducing the number of redundancies present in databases, or designing focused libraries by grouping compounds similar to a template with the aim to fine tune its properties, are potent diversity analysis tools that may be used to optimize molecules based on their properties and specifically, to speed up the process of lead discovery and optimization. The present work describes first methods that are used to describe molecular systems. This is followed by a section devoted to describe different measures of similarity between molecules, to finish with a description of different methods used to select subsets molecules according to the constraints imposed. The final section deals with the validation of these methods, based on different studies available in the literature.

  2. Exploring the free energy surface using ab initio molecular dynamics

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Samanta, Amit; Morales, Miguel A.; Schwegler, Eric

    2016-04-01

    Efficient exploration of configuration space and identification of metastable structures in condensed phase systems are challenging from both computational and algorithmic perspectives. In this regard, schemes that utilize a set of pre-defined order parameters to sample the relevant parts of the configuration space [L. Maragliano and E. Vanden-Eijnden, Chem. Phys. Lett. 426, 168 (2006); J. B. Abrams and M. E. Tuckerman, J. Phys. Chem. B 112, 15742 (2008)] have proved useful. Here, we demonstrate how these order-parameter aided temperature accelerated sampling schemes can be used within the Born-Oppenheimer and the Car-Parrinello frameworks of ab initio molecular dynamics to efficiently and systematically explore free energy surfaces, and search for metastable states and reaction pathways. We have used these methods to identify the metastable structures and reaction pathways in SiO2 and Ti. In addition, we have used the string method [W. E, W. Ren, and E. Vanden-Eijnden, Phys. Rev. B 66, 052301 (2002); L. Maragliano et al., J. Chem. Phys. 125, 024106 (2006)] within the density functional theory to study the melting pathways in the high pressure cotunnite phase of SiO2 and the hexagonal closed packed to face centered cubic phase transition in Ti.

  3. Free energy barrier for molecular motions in bistable [2]rotaxane molecular electronic devices.

    PubMed

    Kim, Hyungjun; Goddard, William A; Jang, Seung Soon; Dichtel, William R; Heath, James R; Stoddart, J Fraser

    2009-03-12

    Donor-acceptor binding of the pi-electron-poor cyclophane cyclobis(paraquat-p-phenylene) (CBPQT(4+)) with the pi-electron-rich tetrathiafulvalene (TTF) and 1,5-dioxynaphthalene (DNP) stations provides the basis for electrochemically switchable, bistable [2]rotaxanes, which have been incorporated and operated within solid-state devices to form ultradense memory circuits (ChemPhysChem 2002, 3, 519-525; Nature 2007, 445, 414-417) and nanoelectromechanical systems. The rate of CBPQT(4+) shuttling at each oxidation state of the [2]rotaxane dictates critical write-and-retention time parameters within the devices, which can be tuned through chemical synthesis. To validate how well computational chemistry methods can estimate these rates for use in designing new devices, we used molecular dynamics simulations to calculate the free energy barrier for the shuttling of the CBPQT(4+) ring between the TTF and the DNP. The approach used here was to calculate the potential of mean force along the switching pathway, from which we calculated free energy barriers. These calculations find a turn-on time after the rotaxane is doubly oxidized of approximately 10(-7) s (suggesting that the much longer experimental turn-on time is determined by the time scale of oxidization). The return barrier from the DNP to the TTF leads to a predicted lifetime of 2.1 s, which is compatible with experiments.

  4. High energy particle collisions near black holes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zaslavskii, O. B.

    2016-10-01

    If two geodesic particles collide near a rotating black hole, their energy in the centre of mass frame Ec.m. can become unbound under certain conditions (the so-called BSW effect). The special role is played here by so-called critical geodesics when one of particles has fine-tuned energy and angular momentum. The nature of geodesics reveals itself also in fate of the debris after collisions. One of particles moving to a remote observer is necessarily near-critical. We discuss, when such a collision can give rise not only unboud Ec.m. but also unbound Killing energy E (so-called super-Penrose process).

  5. Molecular approaches to solar energy conversion: the energetic cost of charge separation from molecular-excited states.

    PubMed

    Durrant, James R

    2013-08-13

    This review starts with a brief overview of the technological potential of molecular-based solar cell technologies. It then goes on to focus on the core scientific challenge associated with using molecular light-absorbing materials for solar energy conversion, namely the separation of short-lived, molecular-excited states into sufficiently long-lived, energetic, separated charges capable of generating an external photocurrent. Comparisons are made between different molecular-based solar cell technologies, with particular focus on the function of dye-sensitized photoelectrochemical solar cells as well as parallels with the function of photosynthetic reaction centres. The core theme of this review is that generating charge carriers with sufficient lifetime and a high quantum yield from molecular-excited states comes at a significant energetic cost-such that the energy stored in these charge-separated states is typically substantially less than the energy of the initially generated excited state. The role of this energetic loss in limiting the efficiency of solar energy conversion by such devices is emphasized, and strategies to minimize this energy loss are compared and contrasted.

  6. Can we avoid dark energy?

    PubMed

    Zibin, James P; Moss, Adam; Scott, Douglas

    2008-12-19

    The idea that we live near the center of a large, nonlinear void has attracted attention recently as an alternative to dark energy or modified gravity. We show that an appropriate void profile can fit both the latest cosmic microwave background and supernova data. However, this requires either a fine-tuned primordial spectrum or a Hubble rate so low as to rule these models out. We also show that measurements of the radial baryon acoustic scale can provide very strong constraints. Our results present a serious challenge to void models of acceleration.

  7. Transiting the molecular potential energy surface along low energy pathways: the TRREAT algorithm.

    PubMed

    Campañá, Carlos; Miller, Ronald E

    2013-11-05

    The Transition Rapidly exploring Random Eigenvector Assisted Tree (TRREAT) algorithm is introduced to perform searches along low curvature pathways on a potential energy surface (PES). The method combines local curvature information about the PES with an iterative Rapidly exploring Random Tree algorithm (LaValle, Computer Science Department, Iowa State University, 1998, TR98-11) that quickly searches high-dimensional spaces for feasible pathways between local minima. Herein, the method is applied to identifying conformational changes of molecular systems using Cartesian coordinates while avoiding a priori definition of collective variables. We analyze the pathway identification problem for alanine dipeptide, cyclohexane and glycine using nonreactive and reactive forcefields. We show how TRREAT-identified pathways can be used as valuable input guesses for double-ended methods such as the Nudged Elastic Band when ascertaining transition state energies. This method can be utilized to improve/extend the reaction databases that lie at the core of automatic chemical reaction mechanism generator software currently developed to build kinetic models of chemical reactions. Copyright © 2013 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  8. Molecular dynamics simulations of threshold displacement energies in Fe

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Nordlund, K.; Wallenius, J.; Malerba, L.

    2006-05-01

    We compare systematically the threshold displacement energy surface of 11 interatomic potentials in Fe. We discuss in detail different possible definitions of threshold displacement energies, and how they relate to different kinds of experimental threshold displacement energies. We compare the threshold results to experiments, and find that none of the 11 tested potentials agrees fully with experiments. However, all the potentials predict some qualitative features in the same way, most importantly that the threshold energy surface close to the 1 0 0 crystal direction is flat and that the largest threshold energies occur around very roughly the 1 2 3 crystal direction.

  9. Molecular effects on turbulent diffusion and energy in a low speed closed flow

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Akpovo, Charlemagne C.; Johnson, Joseph A.; Chabi Orou, Jean B.

    2008-05-01

    The coefficient of turbulent diffusion and the total turbulent energy are determined during the compression phase of a motored internal combustion engine with varying flow conditions and using intake gases with varying molecular weights. These turbulent parameters change with time and with intake gas molecular weight. However, under all flow conditions, both parameters first increase and then decrease with increasing molecular weight. In addition, a direct correlation is observed between the average values of the coefficient of turbulent diffusion and the average values of the total turbulent energy, irrespective of the molecular weight.

  10. Molecular Breeding of Sorghum bicolor, A Novel Energy Crop.

    PubMed

    Ordonio, Reynante; Ito, Yusuke; Morinaka, Yoichi; Sazuka, Takashi; Matsuoka, Makoto

    2016-01-01

    Currently, molecular breeding is regarded as an important tool for the improvement of many crop species. However, in sorghum, recently heralded as an important bioenergy crop, progress in this field has been relatively slow and limited. In this review, we present existing efforts targeted at genetic characterization of sorghum mutants. We also comprehensively review the different attempts made toward the isolation of genes involved in agronomically important traits, including the dissection of some sorghum quantitative trait loci (QTLs). We also explore the current status of the use of transgenic techniques in sorghum, which should be crucial for advancing sorghum molecular breeding. Through this report, we provide a useful benchmark to help assess how much more sorghum genomics and molecular breeding could be improved.

  11. Molecular frame Auger electron energy spectrum from N2

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cryan, J. P.; Glownia, J. M.; Andreasson, J.; Belkacem, A.; Berrah, N.; Blaga, C. I.; Bostedt, C.; Bozek, J.; Cherepkov, N. A.; DiMauro, L. F.; Fang, L.; Gessner, O.; Gühr, M.; Hajdu, J.; Hertlein, M. P.; Hoener, M.; Kornilov, O.; Marangos, J. P.; March, A. M.; McFarland, B. K.; Merdji, H.; Messerschmidt, M.; Petrović, V. S.; Raman, C.; Ray, D.; Reis, D. A.; Semenov, S. K.; Trigo, M.; White, J. L.; White, W.; Young, L.; Bucksbaum, P. H.; Coffee, R. N.

    2012-03-01

    Here we present the first angle-resolved, non-resonant (normal) Auger spectra for impulsively aligned nitrogen molecules. We have measured the angular pattern of Auger electron emission following K-shell photoionization by 1.1 keV photons from the Linac Coherent Light Source (LCLS). Using strong-field-induced molecular alignment to make molecular frame measurements is equally effective for both repulsive and quasi-bound final states. The capability to resolve Auger emission angular distributions in the molecular frame of reference provides a new tool for spectral assignments in congested Auger electron spectra that takes advantage of the symmetries of the final diction states. Based on our experimental results and theoretical predictions, we propose the assignment of the spectral features in the Auger electron spectrum.

  12. Properties of Energy Spectra of Molecular Crystals Investigated by Nonlinear Theory

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pang, Xiao-Feng; Zhang, Huai-Wu

    We calculate the quantum energy spectra of molecular crystals, such as acetanilide, by using discrete nonlinear Schrodinger equation, containing various interactions, appropriate to the systems. The energy spectra consist of many energy bands, in each energy band there are a lot of energy levels including some higher excited states. The result of energy spectrum is basically consistent with experimental values obtained by infrared absorption and Raman scattering in acetanilide and can also explain some experimental results obtained by Careri et al. Finally, we further discuss the influences of variously characteristic parameters on the energy spectra of the systems.

  13. Energy transformation in molecular electronic systems. Progress report

    SciTech Connect

    Kasha, M.

    1984-01-01

    Intramolecular Porton Transfer: Amplified spontaneous emission and laser action has been discovered in 3-hydroxyflavone. Proton transfer is also being studied in flavins (lumichrome) and DNA purines (adenine and guanine). Singlet Molecular Oxygen Studies: Excited-state studies are underway. (DLC)

  14. The molecular photo-cell: quantum transport and energy conversion at strong non-equilibrium.

    PubMed

    Ajisaka, Shigeru; Žunkovič, Bojan; Dubi, Yonatan

    2015-02-09

    The molecular photo-cell is a single molecular donor-acceptor complex attached to electrodes and subject to external illumination. Besides the obvious relevance to molecular photo-voltaics, the molecular photo-cell is of interest being a paradigmatic example for a system that inherently operates in out-of-equilibrium conditions and typically far from the linear response regime. Moreover, this system includes electrons, phonons and photons, and environments which induce coherent and incoherent processes, making it a challenging system to address theoretically. Here, using an open quantum systems approach, we analyze the non-equilibrium transport properties and energy conversion performance of a molecular photo-cell, including both coherent and incoherent processes and treating electrons, photons, and phonons on an equal footing. We find that both the non-equilibrium conditions and decoherence play a crucial role in determining the performance of the photovoltaic conversion and the optimal energy configuration of the molecular system.

  15. The Molecular Photo-Cell: Quantum Transport and Energy Conversion at Strong Non-Equilibrium

    PubMed Central

    Ajisaka, Shigeru; Žunkovič, Bojan; Dubi, Yonatan

    2015-01-01

    The molecular photo-cell is a single molecular donor-acceptor complex attached to electrodes and subject to external illumination. Besides the obvious relevance to molecular photo-voltaics, the molecular photo-cell is of interest being a paradigmatic example for a system that inherently operates in out-of-equilibrium conditions and typically far from the linear response regime. Moreover, this system includes electrons, phonons and photons, and environments which induce coherent and incoherent processes, making it a challenging system to address theoretically. Here, using an open quantum systems approach, we analyze the non-equilibrium transport properties and energy conversion performance of a molecular photo-cell, including both coherent and incoherent processes and treating electrons, photons, and phonons on an equal footing. We find that both the non-equilibrium conditions and decoherence play a crucial role in determining the performance of the photovoltaic conversion and the optimal energy configuration of the molecular system. PMID:25660494

  16. Designing metal hydride complexes for water splitting reactions: a molecular electrostatic potential approach.

    PubMed

    Sandhya, K S; Suresh, Cherumuttathu H

    2014-08-28

    The hydridic character of octahedral metal hydride complexes of groups VI, VII and VIII has been systematically studied using molecular electrostatic potential (MESP) topography. The absolute minimum of MESP at the hydride ligand (Vmin) and the MESP value at the hydride nucleus (VH) are found to be very good measures of the hydridic character of the hydride ligand. The increasing/decreasing electron donating feature of the ligand environment is clearly reflected in the increasing/decreasing negative character of Vmin and VH. The formation of an outer sphere metal hydride-water complex showing the HH dihydrogen interaction is supported by the location and the value of Vmin near the hydride ligand. A higher negative MESP suggested lower activation energy for H2 elimination. Thus, MESP features provided a way to fine-tune the ligand environment of a metal-hydride complex to achieve high hydridicity for the hydride ligand. The applicability of an MESP based hydridic descriptor in designing water splitting reactions is tested for group VI metal hydride model complexes of tungsten.

  17. Influence of Copolyester Composition on Adhesion to Soda-Lime Glass via Molecular Dynamics Simulations.

    PubMed

    Hanson, Ben; Hofmann, John; Pasquinelli, Melissa A

    2016-06-01

    Copolyesters are a subset of polymers that have the desirable properties of strength and clarity while retaining chemical resistance, and are thus potential candidates for enhancing the impact resistance of soda-lime glass. Adhesion between the polymer and the glass relates to the impact performance of the system, as well as the longevity of the bond between the polymer and the glass under various conditions. Modifying the types of diols and diacids present in the copolyester provides a method for fine-tuning the physical properties of the polymer. In this study, we used molecular dynamics (MD) simulations to examine the influence of the chemical composition of the polymers on adhesion of polymer film laminates to two soda-lime glass surfaces, one tin-rich and one oxygen-rich. By calculating properties such as adhesion energies and contact angles, these results provide insights into how the polymer-glass interaction is impacted by the polymer composition, temperature, and other factors such as the presence of free volume or pi stacking. These results can be used to optimize the adhesion of copolyester films to glass surfaces.

  18. Sulphur hexaflouride: low energy (e,2e) experiments and molecular three-body distorted wave theory

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Nixon, Kate L.; Murray, Andrew J.; Chaluvadi, H.; Ning, C. G.; Colgan, James; Madison, Don H.

    2016-10-01

    Experimental and theoretical triple differential ionisation cross-sections (TDCSs) are presented for the highest occupied molecular orbital of sulphur hexafluoride. These measurements were performed in the low energy regime, with outgoing electron energies ranging from 5 to 40 eV in a coplanar geometry, and with energies of 10 and 20 eV in a perpendicular geometry. Complementary theoretical predictions of the TDCS were calculated using the molecular three-body distorted wave formalism. Calculations were performed using a proper average over molecular orientations as well as the orientation-averaged molecular orbital approximation. This more sophisticated model was found to be in closer agreement with the experimental data, however neither model accurately predicts the TDCS over all geometries and energies.

  19. Ginzburg-Landau free energy for molecular fluids: Determination and coarse-graining

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Desgranges, Caroline; Delhommelle, Jerome

    2017-02-01

    Using molecular simulation, we determine Ginzburg-Landau free energy functions for molecular fluids. To this aim, we extend the Expanded Wang-Landau method to calculate the partition functions, number distributions and Landau free energies for Ar,CO2 and H2O . We then parametrize a coarse-grained free energy function of the density order parameter and assess the performance of this free energy function on its ability to model the onset of criticality in these systems. The resulting parameters can be readily used in hybrid atomistic/continuum simulations that connect the microscopic and mesoscopic length scales.

  20. Electron Transport Modeling of Molecular Nanoscale Bridges Used in Energy Conversion Schemes

    SciTech Connect

    Dunietz, Barry D

    2016-08-09

    The goal of the research program is to reliably describe electron transport and transfer processes at the molecular level. Such insight is essential for improving molecular applications of solar and thermal energy conversion. We develop electronic structure models to study (1) photoinduced electron transfer and transport processes in organic semiconducting materials, and (2) charge and heat transport through molecular bridges. We seek fundamental understanding of key processes, which lead to design new experiments and ultimately to achieve systems with improved properties.

  1. Electron Transport Modeling of Molecular Nanoscale Bridges Used in Energy Conversion Schemes

    SciTech Connect

    Dunietz, Barry D.

    2016-08-09

    The goal of the research program is to reliably describe electron transport and transfer processes at the molecular level. Such insight is essential for improving molecular applications of solar and thermal energy conversion. We develop electronic structure models to study (1) photoinduced electron transfer and transport processes in organic semiconducting materials, and (2) charge and heat transport through molecular bridges. We seek fundamental understanding of key processes, which lead to design new experiments and ultimately to achieve systems with improved properties.

  2. Molecular dynamics algorithm enforcing energy conservation for microcanonical simulations.

    PubMed

    Salueña, Clara; Avalos, Josep Bonet

    2014-05-01

    A reversible algorithm [enforced energy conservation (EEC)] that enforces total energy conservation for microcanonical simulations is presented. The key point is the introduction of the discrete-gradient method to define the forces from the conservative potentials, instead of the direct use of the force field at the actual position of the particle. We have studied the performance and accuracy of the EEC in two cases, namely Lennard-Jones fluid and a simple electrolyte model. Truncated potentials that usually induce inaccuracies in energy conservation are used. In particular, the reaction field approach is used in the latter. The EEC is able to preserve energy conservation for a long time, and, in addition, it performs better than the Verlet algorithm for these kinds of simulations.

  3. Mechanochemical Energy Transduction during the Main Rotary Step in the Synthesis Cycle of F1-ATPase.

    PubMed

    Czub, Jacek; Wieczór, Miłosz; Prokopowicz, Bartosz; Grubmüller, Helmut

    2017-03-09

    F1-ATPase is a highly efficient molecular motor that can synthesize ATP driven by a mechanical torque. Its ability to function reversibly in either direction requires tight mechanochemical coupling between the catalytic domain and the rotating central shaft, as well as temporal control of substrate binding and product release. Despite great efforts and significant progress, the molecular details of this synchronized and fine-tuned energy conversion mechanism are not fully understood. Here, we use extensive molecular dynamics simulations to reconcile recent single-molecule experiments with structural data and provide a consistent thermodynamic, kinetic and mechanistic description of the main rotary substep in the synthetic cycle of mammalian ATP synthase. The calculated free energy profiles capture a discrete pattern in the rotation of the central γ-shaft, with a metastable intermediate located-consistently with recent experimental findings-at 70° relative to the X-ray position. We identify this rotary step as the ATP-dependent substep, and find that the associated free energy input supports the mechanism involving concurrent nucleotide binding and release. During the main substep, our simulations show no significant opening of the ATP-bound β subunit; instead, we observe that mechanical energy is transmitted to its nucleotide binding site, thus lowering the affinity for ATP. Simultaneously, the empty subunit assumes a conformation that enables the enzyme to harness the free energy of ADP binding to drive ATP release. Finally, we show that ligand exchange is regulated by a checkpoint mechanism, an apparent prerequisite for high efficiency in protein nanomotors.

  4. Environmental Molecular Sciences Laboratory Operations System: Version 4.0 - system requirements specification

    SciTech Connect

    Kashporenko, D.

    1996-07-01

    This document is intended to provide an operations standard for the Environmental Molecular Sciences Laboratory OPerations System (EMSL OPS). It is directed toward three primary audiences: (1) Environmental Molecular Sciences Laboratory (EMSL) facility and operations personnel; (2) laboratory line managers and staff; and (3) researchers, equipment operators, and laboratory users. It is also a statement of system requirements for software developers of EMSL OPS. The need for a finely tuned, superior research environment as provided by the US Department of Energy`s (DOE) Environmental Molecular Sciences Laboratory has never been greater. The abrupt end of the Cold War and the realignment of national priorities caused major US and competing overseas laboratories to reposition themselves in a highly competitive research marketplace. For a new laboratory such as the EMSL, this means coming into existence in a rapidly changing external environment. For any major laboratory, these changes create funding uncertainties and increasing global competition along with concomitant demands for higher standards of research product quality and innovation. While more laboratories are chasing fewer funding dollars, research ideas and proposals, especially for molecular-level research in the materials and biological sciences, are burgeoning. In such an economically constrained atmosphere, reduced costs, improved productivity, and strategic research project portfolio building become essential to establish and maintain any distinct competitive advantage. For EMSL, this environment and these demands require clear operational objectives, specific goals, and a well-crafted strategy. Specific goals will evolve and change with the evolution of the nature and definition of DOE`s environmental research needs. Hence, EMSL OPS is designed to facilitate migration of these changes with ease into every pertinent job function, creating a facile {open_quotes}learning organization.{close_quotes}

  5. Binding energy calculations for hevein-carbohydrate interactions using expanded ensemble molecular dynamics simulations

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Koppisetty, Chaitanya A. K.; Frank, Martin; Lyubartsev, Alexander P.; Nyholm, Per-Georg

    2015-01-01

    Accurate estimation of protein-carbohydrate binding energies using computational methods is a challenging task. Here we report the use of expanded ensemble molecular dynamics (EEMD) simulation with double decoupling for estimation of binding energies of hevein, a plant lectin with its monosaccharide and disaccharide ligands GlcNAc and (GlcNAc)2, respectively. In addition to the binding energies, enthalpy and entropy components of the binding energy are also calculated. The estimated binding energies for the hevein-carbohydrate interactions are within the range of ±0.5 kcal of the previously reported experimental binding data. For comparison, binding energies were also estimated using thermodynamic integration, molecular dynamics end point calculations (MM/GBSA) and the expanded ensemble methodology is seen to be more accurate. To our knowledge, the method of EEMD simulations has not been previously reported for estimating biomolecular binding energies.

  6. Quality Assessment of Predicted Protein Models Using Energies Calculated by the Fragment Molecular Orbital Method.

    PubMed

    Simoncini, David; Nakata, Hiroya; Ogata, Koji; Nakamura, Shinichiro; Zhang, Kam Yj

    2015-02-01

    Protein structure prediction directly from sequences is a very challenging problem in computational biology. One of the most successful approaches employs stochastic conformational sampling to search an empirically derived energy function landscape for the global energy minimum state. Due to the errors in the empirically derived energy function, the lowest energy conformation may not be the best model. We have evaluated the use of energy calculated by the fragment molecular orbital method (FMO energy) to assess the quality of predicted models and its ability to identify the best model among an ensemble of predicted models. The fragment molecular orbital method implemented in GAMESS was used to calculate the FMO energy of predicted models. When tested on eight protein targets, we found that the model ranking based on FMO energies is better than that based on empirically derived energies when there is sufficient diversity among these models. This model diversity can be estimated prior to the FMO energy calculations. Our result demonstrates that the FMO energy calculated by the fragment molecular orbital method is a practical and promising measure for the assessment of protein model quality and the selection of the best protein model among many generated.

  7. High-Energy Molecular Beam Source Using a Small Shock Tube: Evaluation of Convergent Type Design

    SciTech Connect

    Yoshimoto, Y.; Miyoshi, N.; Kinefuchi, I.; Takagi, S.; Matsumoto, Y.; Shimizu, K.

    2011-05-20

    Molecular beam source using a small shock tube has the potential to frequently generate high energy molecular beam in a range of 1-5 eV without any undesirable impurities. We measured shock Mach numbers in 2 and 4-mm-diameter straight tubes to know about the propagation of shock wave in a very small shock tube. In addition, we measured shock Mach numbers in convergent shock tubes of which diameters linearly decrease from 4 mm to 2 mm, which demonstrated the possibility of a convergent shock tube to generate higher energy molecular beam than straight one.

  8. Molecular Mechanisms Regulating TGF-β-Induced Foxp3 Expression

    PubMed Central

    Xu, Lili; Kitani, Atsushi; Strober, Warren

    2013-01-01

    Molecular mechanisms regulating TGF-β induction of Foxp3 expression and thus induction of iTregs has been the focus of a great deal of study in recent years. It has become clear that this process is influenced by a number of factors as perhaps might be predicted by the fact that there is an overarching need of the immune system to fine-tune response to environmental antigens. In this review we discuss these mechanisms, with the aim of presenting a broad picture of how the various observations fit together to form an integrated regulatory regime. PMID:20404810

  9. Efficient Radioisotope Energy Transfer by Gold Nanoclusters for Molecular Imaging.

    PubMed

    Volotskova, Olga; Sun, Conroy; Stafford, Jason H; Koh, Ai Leen; Ma, Xiaowei; Cheng, Zhen; Cui, Bianxiao; Pratx, Guillem; Xing, Lei

    2015-08-26

    Beta-emitting isotopes Fluorine-18 and Yttrium-90 are tested for their potential to stimulate gold nanoclusters conjugated with blood serum proteins (AuNCs). AuNCs excited by either medical radioisotope are found to be highly effective ionizing radiation energy transfer mediators, suitable for in vivo optical imaging. AuNCs synthesized with protein templates convert beta-decaying radioisotope energy into tissue-penetrating optical signals between 620 and 800 nm. Optical signals are not detected from AuNCs incubated with Technetium-99m, a pure gamma emitter that is used as a control. Optical emission from AuNCs is not proportional to Cerenkov radiation, indicating that the energy transfer between the radionuclide and AuNC is only partially mediated by Cerenkov photons. A direct Coulombic interaction is proposed as a novel and significant mechanism of energy transfer between decaying radionuclides and AuNCs. © 2015 WILEY-VCH Verlag GmbH & Co. KGaA, Weinheim.

  10. Ecotin-Like ISP of L. major Promastigotes Fine-Tunes Macrophage Phagocytosis by Limiting the Pericellular Release of Bradykinin from Surface-Bound Kininogens: A Survival Strategy Based on the Silencing of Proinflammatory G-Protein Coupled Kinin B2 and B1 Receptors

    PubMed Central

    Svensjö, Erik; Vellasco, Lucas; Scharfstein, Julio

    2014-01-01

    Inhibitors of serine peptidases (ISPs) expressed by Leishmania major enhance intracellular parasitism in macrophages by targeting neutrophil elastase (NE), a serine protease that couples phagocytosis to the prooxidative TLR4/PKR pathway. Here we investigated the functional interplay between ISP-expressing L. major and the kallikrein-kinin system (KKS). Enzymatic assays showed that NE inhibitor or recombinant ISP-2 inhibited KKS activation in human plasma activated by dextran sulfate. Intravital microscopy in the hamster cheek pouch showed that topically applied L. major promastigotes (WT and Δisp2/3 mutants) potently induced plasma leakage through the activation of bradykinin B2 receptors (B2R). Next, using mAbs against kininogen domains, we showed that these BK-precursor proteins are sequestered by L. major promastigotes, being expressed at higher % in the Δisp2/3 mutant population. Strikingly, analysis of the role of kinin pathway in the phagocytic uptake of L. major revealed that antagonists of B2R or B1R reversed the upregulated uptake of Δisp2/3 mutants without inhibiting macrophage internalization of WT L. major. Collectively, our results suggest that L. major ISP-2 fine-tunes macrophage phagocytosis by inhibiting the pericellular release of proinflammatory kinins from surface bound kininogens. Ongoing studies should clarify whether L. major ISP-2 subverts TLR4/PKR-dependent prooxidative responses of macrophages by preventing activation of G-protein coupled B2R/B1R. PMID:25294952

  11. Commentary on: "Redirecting abiraterone metabolism to fine-tune prostate cancer anti-androgen therapy." Li Z, Alyamani M, Li J, Rogacki K, Abazeed M, Upadhyay SK, Balk SP, Taplin ME, Auchus RJ, Sharifi N. Nature. 2016 May 25;533(7604):547-51.

    PubMed

    Lee, Byron H

    2017-09-01

    Abiraterone blocks androgen synthesis and prolongs survival in patients with castration-resistant prostate cancer, which is otherwise driven by intratumoral androgen synthesis. Abiraterone is metabolized in patients to Δ(4)-abiraterone (D4A), which has even greater antitumour activity and is structurally similar to endogenous steroidal 5α-reductase substrates, such as testosterone. Here, we show that D4A is converted to at least three 5α-reduced and three 5β-reduced metabolites in human serum. The initial 5α-reduced metabolite, 3-keto-5α-abiraterone, is present at higher concentrations than D4A in patients with prostate cancer taking abiraterone, and is an androgen receptor agonist, which promotes prostate cancer progression. In a clinical trial of abiraterone alone, followed by abiraterone plus dutasteride (a 5α-reductase inhibitor), 3-keto-5α-abiraterone and downstream metabolites were depleted by the addition of dutasteride, while D4A concentrations rose, showing that dutasteride effectively blocks production of a tumor-promoting metabolite and permits D4A accumulation. Furthermore, dutasteride did not deplete the three 5β-reduced metabolites, which were also clinically detectable, demonstrating the specific biochemical effects of pharmacological 5α-reductase inhibition on abiraterone metabolism. Our findings suggest a previously unappreciated and biochemically specific method of clinically fine-tuning abiraterone metabolism to optimize therapy. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  12. Unraveling the binding mechanism of polyoxyethylene sorbitan esters with bovine serum albumin: a novel theoretical model based on molecular dynamic simulations.

    PubMed

    Delgado-Magnero, Karelia H; Valiente, Pedro A; Ruiz-Peña, Miriam; Pérez-Gramatges, Aurora; Pons, Tirso

    2014-04-01

    To gain a better understanding of the interactions governing the binding mechanism of proteins with non-ionic surfactants, the association processes of Tween 20 and Tween 80 with the bovine serum albumin (BSA) protein were investigated using molecular dynamics (MD) simulations. Protein:surfactant molar ratios were chosen according to the critical micelle concentration (CMC) of each surfactant in the presence of BSA. It was found that both the hydrophilic and the hydrophobic groups of the BSA equally contribute to the surface area of interaction with the non-ionic surfactants. A novel theoretical model for the interactions between BSA and these surfactants at the atomic level is proposed, where both surfactants bind to non-specific domains of the BSA three-dimensional structure mainly through their polyoxyethylene groups, by hydrogen bonds and van der Waals interactions. This is well supported by the strong electrostatic and van der Waals interaction energies obtained in the calculations involving surfactant polyoxyethylene groups and different protein regions. The results obtained from the MD simulations suggest that the formation of surfactant clusters over the BSA structure, due to further cooperative self-assembly of Tween molecules, could increase the protein conformational stability. These results extend the current knowledge on molecular interactions between globular proteins and non-ionic surfactants, and contribute to the fine-tuning design of protein formulations using polysorbates as excipients for minimizing the undesirable effects of protein adsorption and aggregation.

  13. Fast and accurate modeling of molecular atomization energies with machine learning.

    PubMed

    Rupp, Matthias; Tkatchenko, Alexandre; Müller, Klaus-Robert; von Lilienfeld, O Anatole

    2012-02-03

    We introduce a machine learning model to predict atomization energies of a diverse set of organic molecules, based on nuclear charges and atomic positions only. The problem of solving the molecular Schrödinger equation is mapped onto a nonlinear statistical regression problem of reduced complexity. Regression models are trained on and compared to atomization energies computed with hybrid density-functional theory. Cross validation over more than seven thousand organic molecules yields a mean absolute error of ∼10  kcal/mol. Applicability is demonstrated for the prediction of molecular atomization potential energy curves.

  14. The 1999 Conference on Molecular Energy Transfer (COMET XVI)

    DTIC Science & Technology

    1999-07-14

    Parmenter 1971 COMET II Cambridge (UK) Anthony Callear 1973 GRC New Hampshire C . Bradley Moore 1975 COMET IV Loccum (Germany) Peter Toennies 1977 GRC New...Effect in Electron Transmission through Organized Thin Films 12:20-12:40 Hot topic: C . Menzel, H. Zacharias Internal energy of neutral ammonia...slow molecules D. R. Herschbach 1-2 p.2 Quantum dynamics of polyatomic reactions D. C . Clary 1-3 p.3 Product state-resolved stereodynamics of the

  15. Electronic structure, molecular bonding and potential energy surfaces

    SciTech Connect

    Ruedenberg, K.

    1993-12-01

    By virtue of the universal validity of the generalized Born-Oppenheimer separation, potential energy surfaces (PES`) represent the central conceptual as well as quantitative entities of chemical physics and provide the basis for the understanding of most physicochemical phenomena in many diverse fields. The research in this group deals with the elucidation of general properties of PES` as well as with the quantitative determination of PES` for concrete systems, in particular pertaining to reactions involving carbon, oxygen, nitrogen and hydrogen molecules.

  16. Discovery and optimization of triazine derivatives as ROCK1 inhibitors: molecular docking, molecular dynamics simulations and free energy calculations.

    PubMed

    Shen, Mingyun; Zhou, Shunye; Li, Youyong; Pan, Peichen; Zhang, Liling; Hou, Tingjun

    2013-03-01

    Rho-associated protein kinases (ROCK1 and ROCK2) are promising targets for a number of diseases, including cardiovascular disorders, nervous system diseases, cancers, etc. Recently, we have successfully identified a ROCK1 inhibitor (1) with the triazine core. In order to gain a deeper insight into the microscopic binding of this inhibitor with ROCK1 and design derivatives with improved potency, the interactions between ROCK1 and a series of triazine/pyrimidine-based inhibitors were studied by using an integrated computational protocol that combines molecular docking, molecular dynamics (MD) simulations, binding free energy calculations, and binding energy decomposition analysis. First, three docking protocols, rigid receptor docking, induced fit docking, QM-polarized ligand docking, were used to determine the binding modes of the studied inhibitors in the active site of ROCK1. The results illustrate that rigid receptor docking achieves the best performance to rank the binding affinities of the studied inhibitors. Then, based on the predicted structures from molecular docking, MD simulations and MM/GBSA free energy calculations were employed to determine the dynamic binding process and compare the binding modes of the inhibitors with different activities. The binding free energies predicted by MM/GBSA are in good agreement with the experimental bioactivities, and the analysis of the individual energy terms suggests that the van der Waals interaction is the major driving force for ligand binding. In addition, the residue-inhibitor interaction spectra were obtained by the MM/GBSA free energy decomposition analysis, and the important residues for achieving strong binding were highlighted, which affords important guidance for the rational design of novel ROCK inhibitors. Finally, a variety of derivatives of inhibitor 1 were designed and four of them showed promising potency according to the predictions. We expect that our study can provide significant insight into the

  17. Molecular simulations of ultra-low-energy nitrogen ion bombardment of A-DNA in vacuum.

    PubMed

    Ngaojampa, Chanisorn; Nimmanpipug, Piyarat; Yu, Liangdeng; Anuntalabhochai, Somboon; Lee, Vannajan Sanghiran

    2010-02-26

    For investigating mechanisms involved in low-energy ion beam induced mutation, besides experiments using low-energy and low-fluence ions to bombard naked DNA, molecular simulations were carried out as an effort towards the insight in molecular interactions between ions and DNA. In the current study, Monte Carlo (MC) and molecular dynamics (MD) simulations were applied. The results of MC simulations provide some clues about the interaction energies and sites of preference of N-ion bombardment on an A-DNA short duplex strand. MD simulations of a single N-ion moving towards the same DNA strand with different linear velocities corresponding to bombardment energies of 0.1, 1, 10 and 100 eV revealed information about changes in bond lengths and visibly distorted structures of bombarded nucleotides. The simulations demonstrated that ion-bombardment-induced DNA change in structure was not a random but preferential effect. Copyright 2009 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  18. Realizing molecular pixel system for full-color fluorescence reproduction: RGB-emitting molecular mixture free from energy transfer crosstalk.

    PubMed

    Kwon, Ji Eon; Park, Sanghyuk; Park, Soo Young

    2013-07-31

    A full-color molecular pixel system is realized for the first time using simple mixtures composed of RGB-emitting excited-state intramolecular proton transfer (ESIPT) dyes, each of which has delicately tailored Stokes shift and independent emission capability completely free from energy transfer crosstalk between them. It is demonstrated that the whole range of emission colors enclosed within the RGB color triangle on the CIE 1931 diagram is predictable and conveniently reproducible from the RGB molecular pixels not only in the solution but also in the polymer film. It must be noted that mixing ratios to reproduce the desired color coordinates can be precisely calculated on the basis of additive color theory according to their molecular pixel behavior.

  19. Structural and energy properties of interstitial molecular hydrogen in single-crystal silicon

    SciTech Connect

    Melnikov, V. V.

    2015-06-15

    The structural and energy characteristics of interstitial molecular hydrogen in single-crystal silicon are theoretically studied. The dependence of the potential energy of the system on the position and orientation of the interstitial defect is investigated, and the mechanism of interaction of a hydrogen molecule with a silicon crystal is considered. A three-dimensional model is employed to calculate the energy spectrum of H{sub 2} in Si, and the obtained dispersion law is analyzed.

  20. Electrostatically driven second-sphere ligand switch between high and low reorganization energy forms of native cytochrome c.

    PubMed

    Alvarez-Paggi, Damián; Castro, María A; Tórtora, Verónica; Castro, Laura; Radi, Rafael; Murgida, Daniel H

    2013-03-20

    We have employed a combination of protein film voltammetry, time-resolved vibrational spectroelectrochemistry and molecular dynamics simulations to evaluate the electron-transfer reorganization free energy (λ) of cytochrome c (Cyt) in electrostatic complexes that mimic some basic features of protein-protein and protein-lipid interactions. The results reveal the existence of two native-like conformations of Cyt that present significantly different λ values. Conversion from the high to the low λ forms is triggered by electrostatic interactions, and involves the rupture of a weak H-bond between first- (M80) and second-sphere (Y67) ligands of the heme iron, as a distinctive feature of the conformational switch. The two flexible Ω loops operate as transducers of the electrostatic signal. This fine-tuning effect is abolished in the Y67F Cyt mutant, which presents a λ value similar to the WT protein in electrostatic complexes. We propose that interactions of Cyt with the natural redox partner proteins activate a similar mechanism to minimize the reorganization energy of interprotein electron transfer.

  1. Quantum Mechanical Molecular Interactions for Calculating the Excitation Energy in Molecular Environments: A First-Order Interacting Space Approach

    PubMed Central

    Hasegawa, Jun-ya; Yanai, Kazuma; Ishimura, Kazuya

    2015-01-01

    Intermolecular interactions regulate the molecular properties in proteins and solutions such as solvatochromic systems. Some of the interactions have to be described at an electronic-structure level. In this study, a commutator for calculating the excitation energy is used for deriving a first-order interacting space (FOIS) to describe the environmental response to solute excitation. The FOIS wave function for a solute-in-solvent cluster is solved by second-order perturbation theory. The contributions to the excitation energy are decomposed into each interaction and for each solvent. PMID:25393373

  2. Gate-controlled energy barrier at a graphene/molecular semiconductor junction

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Parui, S.; Pietrobon, L.; Ciudad, D.; Velez, S.; Sun, X.; Stoliar, P.; Casanova, F.; Hueso, L. E.

    The formation of an energy barrier at a metal/molecular semiconductor junction is both a ubiquitous phenomenon as well as the subject of intense research in order to improve the performance of molecular semiconductor-based electronic and optoelectronic devices. For these devices, a junction with a large energy barrier provides rectification, leading to a diode behavior, whereas a relatively small energy barrier provides nearly-ohmic behavior, resulting in efficient carrier injection (extraction) into the molecular semiconductor. Typically, a specific metal/molecular semiconductor combination leads to a fixed energy barrier; therefore, the possibility of a gate-controlled energy barrier is very appealing for advanced applications. Here, we present a graphene/C60 junction-based vertical field-effect transistor in which we demonstrate control of the interfacial energy-barrier such that the junction switches from a highly rectifying diode at negative gate voltages to a nearly-ohmic behavior at positive gate voltages and at room temperature. We extract an energy-barrier modulation of up to 660 meV, a transconductance of up to five orders of magnitude and a gate-modulated photocurrent.

  3. 2013 MOLECULAR ENERGY TRANSFER GORDON RESEARCH CONFERENCE (JANUARY 13-18, 2013 - VENTURA BEACH MARRIOTT, VENTURA CA

    SciTech Connect

    Reid, Scott A.

    2012-10-18

    Sessions covered all areas of molecular energy transfer, with 10 sessions of talks and poster sessions covering the areas of :  Energy Transfer in Inelastic and Reactive Scattering  Energy Transfer in Photoinitiated and Unimolecular Reactions  Non-adiabatic Effects in Energy Transfer  Energy Transfer at Surfaces and Interfaces  Energy Transfer in Clusters, Droplets, and Aerosols  Energy Transfer in Solution and Solid  Energy Transfer in Complex Systems  Energy Transfer: New vistas and horizons  Molecular Energy Transfer: Where Have We Been and Where are We Going?

  4. Advanced Nanostructured Molecular Sieves for Energy Efficient Industrial Separations

    SciTech Connect

    Kunhao Li, Michael Beaver

    2012-01-18

    Due to the very small relative volatility difference between propane and propylene, current propane/propylene separation by distillation requires very tall distillation towers (150-250 theoretical plates) and large reflux ratios (up to 15), which is considered to be the most energy consuming large-scale separation process. Adsorptive separation processes are widely considered to be more energy-efficient alternatives to distillation. However, slow diffusion kinetics/mass transport rate through the adsorbent bed often limits the performance of such processes, so further improvements are possible if intra-particle mass transfer rates can be improved. Rive Technology, Inc. is developing and commercializing its proprietary mesoporous zeolite technology for catalysis and separation. With well-controlled intracrystalline mesoporosity, diffusion kinetics through such mesoporous zeolite based catalysts is much improved relative to conventional zeolites, leading to significantly better product selectivity. This 'proof-of-principle' project (DE-EE0003470) is intended to demonstrate that Rive mesoporous zeolite technology can be extended and applied in adsorptive propane/propylene separation and lead to significant energy saving compared to the current distillation process. In this project, the mesoporous zeolite Y synthesis technology was successfully extended to X and A zeolites that are more relevant to adsorbent applications. Mesoporosity was introduced to zeolite X and A for the first time while maintaining adequate adsorption capacity. Zeolite adsorbents were tested for liquid phase separation performance using a pulse flow test unit and the test results show that the separation selectivity of the mesoporous zeolite adsorbent is much closer to optimal for a Simulated Moving Bed (SMB) separation process and the enhanced mesoporosity lead to >100% increase of overall mass transport rate for propane and propylene. These improvements will significantly improve the

  5. Molecular design of aminopolynitroazole-based high-energy materials.

    PubMed

    Ghule, Vikas D; Srinivas, Dharavath; Sarangapani, Radhakrishnan; Jadhav, Pandurang M; Tewari, Surya P

    2012-07-01

    The density functional theory (DFT) was employed to calculate the energetic properties of several aminopolynitroazoles. The calculations were performed to study the effect of amino and nitro substituents on the heats of formation, densities, detonation performances, thermal stabilities, and sensitivity characteristics of azoles. DFT-B3LYP, DFT-B3PW91, and MP2 methods utilizing the basis sets 6-31 G* and 6-311 G (2df, 3p) were adopted to predict HOFs via designed isodesmic reactions. All of the designed aminopolynitroazoles had heats of formation of >220 kJ mol(-1). The crystal densities of the aminopolynitroazoles were predicted with the cvff force field. All of the energetic azoles had densities of >1.83 g/cm(3). The detonation velocities and pressures were evaluated using the Kamlet-Jacobs equations, utilizing the predicted densities and heats of formation. It was found that aminopolynitroazoles have a detonation velocity of about 9.1 km/s and detonation pressure of 36 GPa. The bond dissociation energies for the C-NO(2) and N-NO(2) bonds were analyzed to investigate the stabilities of the designed molecules. The charge on the nitro group was used to assess impact sensitivity in the present study. The results obtained imply that the designed molecules are stable and are expected to be candidates for high-energy materials (HEMs).

  6. Measurement and Analysis of Rotational Energy of Nitrogen Molecular Beam by REMPI

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mori, H.; Yamaguchi, H.; Kataoka, K.; Sugiyama, N.; Ide, K.; Niimi, T.

    2008-12-01

    Molecular beams are powerful tools for diagnoses of solid surfaces and gas-surface interaction tests. Unfortunately, there are very few reports about experimental analysis of internal energy distribution (e.g. rotational energy) of molecular beams of diatomic or polyatomic molecules, because measurement of internal energy distribution is very difficult. Spectroscopic measurement techniques based on resonantly enhanced multiphoton ionization (REMPI) is very powerful for measurement in highly rarefied gas flows. In this study, the REMPI method is applied to measurement of rotational energy distribution of nitrogen molecular beams. The REMPI spectrum of the molecular beam indicates the rotational temperature higher than the translational temperature of 7.2 K estimated by assuming isentropic flows. The O and P branches of the REMPI spectrum correspond to the rotational temperature of 30 K, but the S branch of the spectrum deviates from that at 30 K. It seems to be because the non-equilibrium rotational energy distribution of the molecular beam deviates from the Boltzmann distribution.

  7. Measurement and Analysis of Rotational Energy of Nitrogen Molecular Beam by REMPI

    SciTech Connect

    Mori, H.; Yamaguchi, H.; Kataoka, K.; Sugiyama, N.; Ide, K.; Niimi, T.

    2008-12-31

    Molecular beams are powerful tools for diagnoses of solid surfaces and gas-surface interaction tests. Unfortunately, there are very few reports about experimental analysis of internal energy distribution (e.g. rotational energy) of molecular beams of diatomic or polyatomic molecules, because measurement of internal energy distribution is very difficult. Spectroscopic measurement techniques based on resonantly enhanced multiphoton ionization (REMPI) is very powerful for measurement in highly rarefied gas flows. In this study, the REMPI method is applied to measurement of rotational energy distribution of nitrogen molecular beams. The REMPI spectrum of the molecular beam indicates the rotational temperature higher than the translational temperature of 7.2 K estimated by assuming isentropic flows. The O and P branches of the REMPI spectrum correspond to the rotational temperature of 30 K, but the S branch of the spectrum deviates from that at 30 K. It seems to be because the non-equilibrium rotational energy distribution of the molecular beam deviates from the Boltzmann distribution.

  8. Molecular mechanism of energy conservation in polysulfide respiration

    SciTech Connect

    Jormakka, Mika; Yokoyama, Ken; Yano, Takahiro; Tamakoshi, Masatada; Akimoto, Satoru; Shimamura, Tatsuro; Curmi, Paul; Iwata, So

    2008-09-03

    Bacterial polysulfide reductase (PsrABC) is an integral membrane protein complex responsible for quinone-coupled reduction of polysulfide, a process important in extreme environments such as deep-sea vents and hot springs. We determined the structure of polysulfide reductase from Thermus thermophilus at 2.4-{angstrom} resolution, revealing how the PsrA subunit recognizes and reduces its unique polyanionic substrate. The integral membrane subunit PsrC was characterized using the natural substrate menaquinone-7 and inhibitors, providing a comprehensive representation of a quinone binding site and revealing the presence of a water-filled cavity connecting the quinone binding site on the periplasmic side to the cytoplasm. These results suggest that polysulfide reductase could be a key energy-conserving enzyme of the T. thermophilus respiratory chain, using polysulfide as the terminal electron acceptor and pumping protons across the membrane via a previously unknown mechanism.

  9. Impact-parameter dependence of the energy loss of fast molecular clusters in hydrogen

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Fadanelli, R. C.; Grande, P. L.; Schiwietz, G.

    2008-03-01

    The electronic energy loss of molecular clusters as a function of impact parameter is far less understood than atomic energy losses. For instance, there are no analytical expressions for the energy loss as a function of impact parameter for cluster ions. In this work, we describe two procedures to evaluate the combined energy loss of molecules: Ab initio calculations within the semiclassical approximation and the coupled-channels method using atomic orbitals; and simplified models for the electronic cluster energy loss as a function of the impact parameter, namely the molecular perturbative convolution approximation (MPCA, an extension of the corresponding atomic model PCA) and the molecular unitary convolution approximation (MUCA, a molecular extension of the previous unitary convolution approximation UCA). In this work, an improved ansatz for MPCA is proposed, extending its validity for very compact clusters. For the simplified models, the physical inputs are the oscillators strengths of the target atoms and the target-electron density. The results from these models applied to an atomic hydrogen target yield remarkable agreement with their corresponding ab initio counterparts for different angles between cluster axis and velocity direction at specific energies of 150 and 300 keV/u.

  10. Theoretical study of substitution effects on molecular reorganization energy in organic semiconductors.

    PubMed

    Geng, Hua; Niu, Yingli; Peng, Qian; Shuai, Zhigang; Coropceanu, Veaceslav; Brédas, Jean-Luc

    2011-09-14

    Chemical substitutions are powerful molecular design tools to enhance the performance of organic semiconductors, for instance, to improve solubility, intermolecular stacking, or film quality. However, at the microscopic level, substitutions in general tend to increase the molecular reorganization energy and thus decrease the intrinsic charge-carrier mobility. Through density functional theory calculations, we elucidate strategies that could be followed to reduce the reorganization energy upon chemical substitution. Specific examples are given here for hole-transport materials including indolo-carbazoles and several triarylamine derivatives. Through decomposition of the total reorganization energy into the internal coordinate space, we are able to identify the molecular segment that provides the most important contributions to the reorganization energy. It is found that when substitution reduces (enhances) the amplitude of the relevant frontier molecular orbital in that segment, the total reorganization energy decreases (increases). In particular, chlorination at appropriate positions can significantly reduce the reorganization energy. Several other substituents are shown to play a similar role, to a greater or lesser extent. © 2011 American Institute of Physics

  11. Ab initio potential energy and dipole moment surfaces for CS2: determination of molecular vibrational energies.

    PubMed

    Pradhan, Ekadashi; Carreón-Macedo, José-Luis; Cuervo, Javier E; Schröder, Markus; Brown, Alex

    2013-08-15

    The ground state potential energy and dipole moment surfaces for CS2 have been determined at the CASPT2/C:cc-pVTZ,S:aug-cc-pV(T+d)Z level of theory. The potential energy surface has been fit to a sum-of-products form using the neural network method with exponential neurons. A generic interface between neural network potential energy surface fitting and the Heidelberg MCTDH software package is demonstrated. The potential energy surface has also been fit using the potfit procedure in MCTDH. For fits to the low-energy regions of the potential, the neural network method requires fewer parameters than potfit to achieve high accuracy; global fits are comparable between the two methods. Using these potential energy surfaces, the vibrational energies have been computed for the four most abundant CS2 isotopomers. These results are compared to experimental and previous theoretical data. The current potential energy surfaces are shown to accurately reproduce the low-lying vibrational energies within a few wavenumbers. Hence, the potential energy and dipole moments surfaces will be useful for future study on the control of quantum dynamics in CS2.

  12. Foraging on the potential energy surface: A swarm intelligence-based optimizer for molecular geometry

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wehmeyer, Christoph; Falk von Rudorff, Guido; Wolf, Sebastian; Kabbe, Gabriel; Schärf, Daniel; Kühne, Thomas D.; Sebastiani, Daniel

    2012-11-01

    We present a stochastic, swarm intelligence-based optimization algorithm for the prediction of global minima on potential energy surfaces of molecular cluster structures. Our optimization approach is a modification of the artificial bee colony (ABC) algorithm which is inspired by the foraging behavior of honey bees. We apply our modified ABC algorithm to the problem of global geometry optimization of molecular cluster structures and show its performance for clusters with 2-57 particles and different interatomic interaction potentials.

  13. Bayesian Energy Landscape Tilting: Towards Concordant Models of Molecular Ensembles

    PubMed Central

    Beauchamp, Kyle A.; Pande, Vijay S.; Das, Rhiju

    2014-01-01

    Predicting biological structure has remained challenging for systems such as disordered proteins that take on myriad conformations. Hybrid simulation/experiment strategies have been undermined by difficulties in evaluating errors from computational model inaccuracies and data uncertainties. Building on recent proposals from maximum entropy theory and nonequilibrium thermodynamics, we address these issues through a Bayesian energy landscape tilting (BELT) scheme for computing Bayesian hyperensembles over conformational ensembles. BELT uses Markov chain Monte Carlo to directly sample maximum-entropy conformational ensembles consistent with a set of input experimental observables. To test this framework, we apply BELT to model trialanine, starting from disagreeing simulations with the force fields ff96, ff99, ff99sbnmr-ildn, CHARMM27, and OPLS-AA. BELT incorporation of limited chemical shift and 3J measurements gives convergent values of the peptide’s α, β, and PPII conformational populations in all cases. As a test of predictive power, all five BELT hyperensembles recover set-aside measurements not used in the fitting and report accurate errors, even when starting from highly inaccurate simulations. BELT’s principled framework thus enables practical predictions for complex biomolecular systems from discordant simulations and sparse data. PMID:24655513

  14. Calculations of molecular ionization energies using a self-consistent-charge Hartree-Fock-Slater method

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Rosen, A.; Ellis, D. E.; Adachi, H.; Averill, F. W.

    1976-01-01

    A numerical-variational method for performing self-consistent molecular calculations in the Hartree-Fock-Slater (HFS) model is presented. Molecular wavefunctions are expanded in terms of basis sets constructed from numerical HFS solutions of selected one-center atomlike problems. Binding energies and wavefunctions for the molecules are generated using a discrete variational method for a given molecular potential. In the self-consistent-charge (SCC) approximation to the complete self-consistent-field (SCF) method, results of a Mulliken population analysis of the molecular eigenfunctions are used in each iteration to produce 'atomic' occupation numbers. The simplest SCC potential is then obtained from overlapping spherical atomlike charge distributions. Molecular ionization energies are calculated using the transition-state procedure; results are given for CO, H2O, H2S, AlCl, InCl, and the Ni5O surface complex. Agreement between experimental and theoretical ionization energies for the free-molecule valence levels is generally within 1 eV. The simple SCC procedure gives a reasonably good approximation to the molecular potential, as shown by comparison with experiment, and with complete SCF calculations for CO, H2O, and H2S.

  15. Theoretical investigation of energy storage in atomic and molecular systems: Metastable molecular fuels

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Saxon, Roberta P.

    1990-12-01

    Ion-pair species bound by the coulomb attraction between a stable positive and stable negative ion have been investigated theoretically as candidate high-energy fuels that could form the basis of new propulsion schemes. Theoretical results for H3O, Li3H, and H3F are presented along with specific impulse, I(sub sp), predictions based on calculated energies. The ion-pair local minimum on the first excited potential surface of H3O is found to be unstable with respect to dissociation to H2 + H + O. The ion-pair state of H3F has a double degenerate imaginary frequency. These results support the general conclusion that ion-pair states based on the H3 cation will not be stable because back-charge transfer to H3(+) leads to neutral H3, which is unstable with respect to H2 + H. However, the ion-pair state of Li3H is found to be a local minimum with a very small barrier to conversion to the lower energy planar form. Even the lowest energy form of Li3H as an additive to hydrogen is predicted to provide a 16 percent improvement in I(sub sp).

  16. Molecular shape and the energetics of chemisorption: From simple to complex energy landscapes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Huang, David M.; Harrowell, Peter

    2012-07-01

    We enumerate all local minima of the energy landscape for model rigid adsorbates characterized by three or four equivalent binding sites (e.g., thiol groups) on a close-packed (111) surface of a face-centered-cubic crystal. We show that the number of energy minima increases linearly with molecular size with a rate of increase that depends on the degree of registry between the molecule shape and the surface structure. The sparseness of energy minima and the large variations in the center-of-mass positions of these minima vs molecular size for molecules that are incommensurate with the surface suggests a strong coupling in these molecules between surface mobility and shape or size fluctuations resulting from molecular vibrations. We also find that the variation in the binding energy with respect to molecular size decreases more rapidly with molecular size for molecules with a higher degree of registry with the surface. This indicates that surface adsorption should be better able to distinguish molecules by size if the molecules are incommensurate with the surface.

  17. Universal lower bound on the free-energy cost of molecular measurements

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Das, Suman G.; Rao, Madan; Iyengar, Garud

    2017-06-01

    The living cell uses a variety of molecular receptors to read and process chemical signals that vary in space and time. We model the dynamics of such molecular level measurements as Markov processes in steady state, with a coupling between the receptor and the signal. We prove exactly that, when the signal dynamics is not perturbed by the receptors, the free energy consumed by the measurement process is lower bounded by a quantity proportional to the mutual information. Our result is completely independent of the receptor architecture and dependent on signal properties alone, and therefore holds as a general principle for molecular information processing.

  18. Hierarchical particle swarm optimizer for minimizing the non-convex potential energy of molecular structure.

    PubMed

    Cheung, Ngaam J; Shen, Hong-Bin

    2014-11-01

    The stable conformation of a molecule is greatly important to uncover the secret of its properties and functions. Generally, the conformation of a molecule will be the most stable when it is of the minimum potential energy. Accordingly, the determination of the conformation can be solved in the optimization framework. It is, however, not an easy task to achieve the only conformation with the lowest energy among all the potential ones because of the high complexity of the energy landscape and the exponential computation increasing with molecular size. In this paper, we develop a hierarchical and heterogeneous particle swarm optimizer (HHPSO) to deal with the problem in the minimization of the potential energy. The proposed method is evaluated over a scalable simplified molecular potential energy function with up to 200 degrees of freedom and a realistic energy function of pseudo-ethane molecule. The experimental results are compared with other six PSO variants and four genetic algorithms. The results show HHPSO is significantly better than the compared PSOs with p-value less than 0.01277 over molecular potential energy function. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  19. Development of Ultra Small Shock Tube for High Energy Molecular Beam Source

    SciTech Connect

    Miyoshi, Nobuya; Nagata, Shuhei; Kinefuchi, Ikuya; Shimizu, Kazuya; Matsumoto, Yoichiro; Takagi, Shu

    2008-12-31

    A molecular beam source exploiting a small shock tube is described for potential generation of high energy beam in a range of 1-5 eV without any undesirable impurities. The performance of a non-diaphragm type shock tube with an inner diameter of 2 mm was evaluated by measuring the acceleration and attenuation process of shock waves. With this shock tube installed in a molecular beam source, we measured the time-of-flight distributions of shock-heated beams, which demonstrated the ability of controlling the beam energy with the initial pressure ratio of the shock tube.

  20. Phosphorescent Molecular Butterflies with Controlled Potential-Energy Surfaces and Their Application as Luminescent Viscosity Sensor.

    PubMed

    Zhou, Chenkun; Yuan, Lin; Yuan, Zhao; Doyle, Nicholas Kelly; Dilbeck, Tristan; Bahadur, Divya; Ramakrishnan, Subramanian; Dearden, Albert; Huang, Chen; Ma, Biwu

    2016-09-06

    We report precise manipulation of the potential-energy surfaces (PESs) of a series of butterfly-like pyrazolate-bridged platinum binuclear complexes, by synthetic control of the electronic structure of the cyclometallating ligand and the steric bulkiness of the pyrazolate bridging ligand. Color tuning of dual emission from blue/red, to green/red and red/deep red were achieved for these phosphorescent molecular butterflies, which have two well-controlled energy minima on the PESs. The environmentally dependent photoluminescence of these molecular butterflies enabled their application as self-referenced luminescent viscosity sensor.

  1. A New Maximum Likelihood Approach for Free Energy Profile Construction from Molecular Simulations

    PubMed Central

    Lee, Tai-Sung; Radak, Brian K.; Pabis, Anna; York, Darrin M.

    2013-01-01

    A novel variational method for construction of free energy profiles from molecular simulation data is presented. The variational free energy profile (VFEP) method uses the maximum likelihood principle applied to the global free energy profile based on the entire set of simulation data (e.g from multiple biased simulations) that spans the free energy surface. The new method addresses common obstacles in two major problems usually observed in traditional methods for estimating free energy surfaces: the need for overlap in the re-weighting procedure and the problem of data representation. Test cases demonstrate that VFEP outperforms other methods in terms of the amount and sparsity of the data needed to construct the overall free energy profiles. For typical chemical reactions, only ~5 windows and ~20-35 independent data points per window are sufficient to obtain an overall qualitatively correct free energy profile with sampling errors an order of magnitude smaller than the free energy barrier. The proposed approach thus provides a feasible mechanism to quickly construct the global free energy profile and identify free energy barriers and basins in free energy simulations via a robust, variational procedure that determines an analytic representation of the free energy profile without the requirement of numerically unstable histograms or binning procedures. It can serve as a new framework for biased simulations and is suitable to be used together with other methods to tackle with the free energy estimation problem. PMID:23457427

  2. A New Maximum Likelihood Approach for Free Energy Profile Construction from Molecular Simulations.

    PubMed

    Lee, Tai-Sung; Radak, Brian K; Pabis, Anna; York, Darrin M

    2013-01-08

    A novel variational method for construction of free energy profiles from molecular simulation data is presented. The variational free energy profile (VFEP) method uses the maximum likelihood principle applied to the global free energy profile based on the entire set of simulation data (e.g from multiple biased simulations) that spans the free energy surface. The new method addresses common obstacles in two major problems usually observed in traditional methods for estimating free energy surfaces: the need for overlap in the re-weighting procedure and the problem of data representation. Test cases demonstrate that VFEP outperforms other methods in terms of the amount and sparsity of the data needed to construct the overall free energy profiles. For typical chemical reactions, only ~5 windows and ~20-35 independent data points per window are sufficient to obtain an overall qualitatively correct free energy profile with sampling errors an order of magnitude smaller than the free energy barrier. The proposed approach thus provides a feasible mechanism to quickly construct the global free energy profile and identify free energy barriers and basins in free energy simulations via a robust, variational procedure that determines an analytic representation of the free energy profile without the requirement of numerically unstable histograms or binning procedures. It can serve as a new framework for biased simulations and is suitable to be used together with other methods to tackle with the free energy estimation problem.

  3. Prediction of fine-tuned promoter activity from DNA sequence

    PubMed Central

    Siwo, Geoffrey; Rider, Andrew; Tan, Asako; Pinapati, Richard; Emrich, Scott; Chawla, Nitesh; Ferdig, Michael

    2016-01-01

    The quantitative prediction of transcriptional activity of genes using promoter sequence is fundamental to the engineering of biological systems for industrial purposes and understanding the natural variation in gene expression. To catalyze the development of new algorithms for this purpose, the Dialogue on Reverse Engineering Assessment and Methods (DREAM) organized a community challenge seeking predictive models of promoter activity given normalized promoter activity data for 90 ribosomal protein promoters driving expression of a fluorescent reporter gene. By developing an unbiased modeling approach that performs an iterative search for predictive DNA sequence features using the frequencies of various k-mers, inferred DNA mechanical properties and spatial positions of promoter sequences, we achieved the best performer status in this challenge. The specific predictive features used in the model included the frequency of the nucleotide G, the length of polymeric tracts of T and TA, the frequencies of 6 distinct trinucleotides and 12 tetranucleotides, and the predicted protein deformability of the DNA sequence. Our method accurately predicted the activity of 20 natural variants of ribosomal protein promoters (Spearman correlation r = 0.73) as compared to 33 laboratory-mutated variants of the promoters (r = 0.57) in a test set that was hidden from participants. Notably, our model differed substantially from the rest in 2 main ways: i) it did not explicitly utilize transcription factor binding information implying that subtle DNA sequence features are highly associated with gene expression, and ii) it was entirely based on features extracted exclusively from the 100 bp region upstream from the translational start site demonstrating that this region encodes much of the overall promoter activity. The findings from this study have important implications for the engineering of predictable gene expression systems and the evolution of gene expression in naturally occurring biological systems. PMID:27347373

  4. Prediction of fine-tuned promoter activity from DNA sequence.

    PubMed

    Siwo, Geoffrey; Rider, Andrew; Tan, Asako; Pinapati, Richard; Emrich, Scott; Chawla, Nitesh; Ferdig, Michael

    2016-01-01

    The quantitative prediction of transcriptional activity of genes using promoter sequence is fundamental to the engineering of biological systems for industrial purposes and understanding the natural variation in gene expression. To catalyze the development of new algorithms for this purpose, the Dialogue on Reverse Engineering Assessment and Methods (DREAM) organized a community challenge seeking predictive models of promoter activity given normalized promoter activity data for 90 ribosomal protein promoters driving expression of a fluorescent reporter gene. By developing an unbiased modeling approach that performs an iterative search for predictive DNA sequence features using the frequencies of various k-mers, inferred DNA mechanical properties and spatial positions of promoter sequences, we achieved the best performer status in this challenge. The specific predictive features used in the model included the frequency of the nucleotide G, the length of polymeric tracts of T and TA, the frequencies of 6 distinct trinucleotides and 12 tetranucleotides, and the predicted protein deformability of the DNA sequence. Our method accurately predicted the activity of 20 natural variants of ribosomal protein promoters (Spearman correlation r = 0.73) as compared to 33 laboratory-mutated variants of the promoters (r = 0.57) in a test set that was hidden from participants. Notably, our model differed substantially from the rest in 2 main ways: i) it did not explicitly utilize transcription factor binding information implying that subtle DNA sequence features are highly associated with gene expression, and ii) it was entirely based on features extracted exclusively from the 100 bp region upstream from the translational start site demonstrating that this region encodes much of the overall promoter activity. The findings from this study have important implications for the engineering of predictable gene expression systems and the evolution of gene expression in naturally occurring biological systems.

  5. Musicians have fine-tuned neural distinction of speech syllables

    PubMed Central

    Parbery-Clark, Alexandra; Tierney, Adam; Strait, Dana L.; Kraus, Nina

    2012-01-01

    One of the benefits musicians derive from their training is an increased ability to detect small differences between sounds. Here, we asked whether musicians’ experience discriminating sounds on the basis of small acoustic differences confers advantages in the subcortical differentiation of closely-related speech sounds (e.g., /ba/ and /ga/), distinguishable only by their harmonic spectra (i.e., their second formant trajectories). Although the second formant is particularly important for distinguishing stop consonants, auditory brainstem neurons do not phase-lock to its frequency range (above 1000 Hz). Instead, brainstem nuclei convert this high-frequency content into neural response timing differences. As such, speech tokens with higher formant frequencies elicit earlier brainstem responses than those with lower formant frequencies. By measuring the degree to which subcortical response timing differs to the speech syllables /ba/, /da/, and /ga/ in adult musicians and nonmusicians, we reveal that musicians demonstrate enhanced subcortical discrimination of closely related speech sounds. Furthermore, the extent of subcortical consonant discrimination correlates with speech-in-noise perception. Taken together, these findings show a musician enhancement for the neural processing of speech and reveal a biological mechanism contributing to musicians’ enhanced speech perception. PMID:22634507

  6. Fine tuning by miRNAs in development

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    McHale, Peter; Levine, Erel; Levine, Herbert

    2007-03-01

    The unique role played by microRNA in a developing embryo is a topic of much current research interest. One possibility is that microRNA diffuse within a developing tissue, acting as communicators between different cells. Here we pursue this possibility in two different contexts. The first case occurs when the transcription profiles of the microRNA and its target are spatially anticorrelated, as for example is the case in the iab4-Ubx system in fly. Conversely, in the second context the two transcription profiles are correlated in space, as may be the case for the mir10-Hoxb4 system in mouse. In each context we identify a major function for a mobile miRNA. In the first, miRNA serve to induce an all-or-nothing response of the mRNA profile to its morphogen by generating a sharp boundary between domains of high and (ultimately) low target expression. In the second, miRNA amplify polarity in the target expression pattern by removing residual mRNAs. Importantly, our model predicts that these two functions require very different type of diffusion. While our results are highly quantitative, we propose ways of realizing them in experiments, taking into account limitations of standard experimental techniques.

  7. Fine tuning of graphene-metal adhesion by surface alloying.

    PubMed

    Alfè, D; Pozzo, M; Miniussi, E; Günther, S; Lacovig, P; Lizzit, S; Larciprete, R; Santos Burgos, B; Menteş, T O; Locatelli, A; Baraldi, A

    2013-01-01

    We show that bimetallic surface alloying provides a viable route for governing the interaction between graphene and metal through the selective choice of the elemental composition of the surface alloy. This concept is illustrated by an experimental and theoretical characterization of the properties of graphene on a model PtRu surface alloy on Ru(0001), with a concentration of Pt atoms in the first layer between 0 and 50%. The progressive increase of the Pt content determines the gradual detachment of graphene from the substrate, which results from the modification of the carbon orbital hybridization promoted by Pt. Alloying is also found to affect the morphology of graphene, which is strongly corrugated on bare Ru, but becomes flat at a Pt coverage of 50%. The method here proposed can be readily extended to several supports, thus opening the way to the conformal growth of graphene on metals and to a full tunability of the graphene-substrate interaction.

  8. Fine Tuning Cell Migration by a Disintegrin and Metalloproteinases

    PubMed Central

    Theodorou, K.

    2017-01-01

    Cell migration is an instrumental process involved in organ development, tissue homeostasis, and various physiological processes and also in numerous pathologies. Both basic cell migration and migration towards chemotactic stimulus consist of changes in cell polarity and cytoskeletal rearrangement, cell detachment from, invasion through, and reattachment to their neighboring cells, and numerous interactions with the extracellular matrix. The different steps of immune cell, tissue cell, or cancer cell migration are tightly coordinated in time and place by growth factors, cytokines/chemokines, adhesion molecules, and receptors for these ligands. This review describes how a disintegrin and metalloproteinases interfere with several steps of cell migration, either by proteolytic cleavage of such molecules or by functions independent of proteolytic activity. PMID:28260841

  9. Fine Tuning Cell Migration by a Disintegrin and Metalloproteinases.

    PubMed

    Dreymueller, D; Theodorou, K; Donners, M; Ludwig, A

    2017-01-01

    Cell migration is an instrumental process involved in organ development, tissue homeostasis, and various physiological processes and also in numerous pathologies. Both basic cell migration and migration towards chemotactic stimulus consist of changes in cell polarity and cytoskeletal rearrangement, cell detachment from, invasion through, and reattachment to their neighboring cells, and numerous interactions with the extracellular matrix. The different steps of immune cell, tissue cell, or cancer cell migration are tightly coordinated in time and place by growth factors, cytokines/chemokines, adhesion molecules, and receptors for these ligands. This review describes how a disintegrin and metalloproteinases interfere with several steps of cell migration, either by proteolytic cleavage of such molecules or by functions independent of proteolytic activity.

  10. Spanish "fine tuning" of language to describe depression and anxiety.

    PubMed

    Noguera, Antonio; Centeno, Carlos; Carvajal, Ana; Tejedor, María Angustias Portela; Urdiroz, Juliana; Martínez, Marina

    2009-08-01

    On screening tools for emotional distress, the terms "depression" and "anxiety" are commonly used for patients with advanced cancer. However, these terms could have negative connotations in Spanish such that cultural and unexpected differences in perception may invalidate or skew the results of the screening if the best terms are not chosen. The goal of this study was to determine the best expression that can be used to explore anxiety and depression in Spanish. A prospective study of 100 Spanish-speaking patients was performed. Spanish patients with cancer completed the Hospital Anxiety and Depression Scale (HADS) and six Verbal Numerical Scales (VNS) exploring the level of anxiety using the terms ansioso (anxious), nervioso (nervous), or intranquilo (uneasy/disquiet), and the level of depression using the terms deprimido (depressed), desanimado (discouraged), or triste (sad). The correlation, sensitivity, and specificity for all the VNS and HADS (8 and 11 cutoff points) were analyzed. The correlation (Spearman rho) between HADS and the anxiety VNS was r = 0.557 using "anxious"; r = 0.603 using "nervous"; and r = 0.594 using "uneasy." The correlation for the depression VNS was r = 0.662 using "depression"; r = 0.759 using "discouraged" and r = 0.596 using "sad"; alpha < 0.001 was used in all VNS. A cutoff point of 4 of 10 for any term used to explore anxiety achieved the best levels for sensitivity (0.80) and specificity (0.70). The term "discouraged" with a cutoff point of 4 of 10 shows a sensitivity of 0.89, a specificity of 0.84, as well as a predictive positive value of 0.77 and a negative value of 0.93. In Spanish, the term desanimado seems to be more suitable in screening for depression. Alternate terms could be used to explore anxiety in Spanish. Exploring depression with simple questions in Spanish achieves greater accuracy than the same approach to exploring anxiety.

  11. Silicon quantum dots: fine-tuning to maturity.

    PubMed

    Morello, Andrea

    2015-12-18

    Quantum dots in semiconductor heterostructures provide one of the most flexible platforms for the study of quantum phenomena at the nanoscale. The surging interest in using quantum dots for quantum computation is forcing researchers to rethink fabrication and operation methods, to obtain highly tunable dots in spin-free host materials, such as silicon. Borselli and colleagues report in Nanotechnology the fabrication of a novel Si/SiGe double quantum dot device, which combines an ultra-low disorder Si/SiGe accumulation-mode heterostructure with a stack of overlapping control gates, ensuring tight confining potentials and exquisite tunability. This work signals the technological maturity of silicon quantum dots, and their readiness to be applied to challenging projects in quantum information science.

  12. tRNA concentration fine tunes protein solubility.

    PubMed

    Fedyunin, Ivan; Lehnhardt, Lothar; Böhmer, Nadine; Kaufmann, Paul; Zhang, Gong; Ignatova, Zoya

    2012-09-21

    Clusters of codons pairing to low-abundance tRNAs synchronize the translation with co-translational folding of single domains in multidomain proteins. Although proven with some examples, the impact of the ribosomal speed on the folding and solubility on a global, cell-wide level remains elusive. Here we show that upregulation of three low-abundance tRNAs in Escherichia coli increased the aggregation propensity of several cellular proteins as a result of an accelerated elongation rate. Intriguingly, alterations in the concentration of the natural tRNA pool compromised the solubility of various chaperones consequently rendering the solubility of some chaperone-dependent proteins.

  13. Fine-tuning Food Safety Objectives and risk assessment.

    PubMed

    Havelaar, Arie H; Nauta, Maarten J; Jansen, Jaap T

    2004-05-15

    Food Safety Objectives (FSOs) have been proposed as a practical tool to translate public health targets for food safety into tolerable levels of pathogens in a food product. The FSO concept is subject to intensive debate, and has not been developed in detail. We evaluate the proposed definition of FSOs and their implementation from the perspective of Quantitative Microbiological Risk Assessment (QMRA). The relationship between QMRA and FSOs is illustrated by a model for the public health risk of Shiga-producing Escherichia coli in steak tartare. We conclude that the proposed definition of FSOs needs to be modified to properly account for variability in and uncertainty about the contamination of food with pathogenic microorganisms and emphasize that both prevalence and concentration of pathogens must be considered. For this purpose, we propose the P-D equivalence curve, a simple graphical tool to separate "tolerable" from "non-tolerable" combinations of prevalence and concentration (dose).

  14. Fine tuning GPS clock estimation in the MCS

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Hutsell, Steven T.

    1995-01-01

    With the completion of a 24 operational satellite constellation, GPS is fast approaching the critical milestone, Full Operational Capability (FOC). Although GPS is well capable of providing the timing accuracy and stability figures required by system specifications, the GPS community will continue to strive for further improvements in performance. The GPS Master Control Station (MCS) recently demonstrated that timing improvements are always composite Clock, and hence, Kalman Filter state estimation, providing a small improvement to user accuracy.

  15. Fine-tuned shuttles for bone morphogenetic proteins.

    PubMed

    Wharton, Kristi A; Serpe, Mihaela

    2013-08-01

    Bone morphogenetic proteins (BMPs) are potent secreted signaling factors that trigger phosphorylation of Smad transcriptional regulators through receptor complex binding at the cell-surface. Resulting changes in target gene expression impact critical cellular responses during development and tissue homeostasis. BMP activity is tightly regulated in time and space by secreted modulators that control BMP extracellular distribution and availability for receptor binding. Such extracellular regulation is key for BMPs to function as morphogens and/or in the formation of morphogen activity gradients. Here, we review shuttling systems utilized to control the distribution of BMP ligands in tissue of various geometries, developing under different temporal constraints. We discuss the biological advantages for employing specific strategies for BMP shuttling and roles of varied ligand forms.

  16. Fine-Tuning the Wilson-Bappu Effect

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gomez, T.; Wallerstein, G.

    2011-12-01

    We have used the re-reduced Hipparcos parallaxes and extensive new observations from various sources to investigate the details of the Ca II emission line width vs. Mv relation first noted in Wilson & Vainu Bappu (1957). Only stars whose parallaxes exceed their probably error by at least a factor of 5 were used. The full range of Mv now extends from Mv =+14 to -5. Small but well defined deviations from a linear relationship are clearly present. The data have also been separately plotted for each luminosity class from V to Ib. Main sequence stars show significant curvature from Mv = 14 to 8. Stars of class III show a very nice linear curve. The supergiants, almost all of which are of class Ib, show the greatest scatter as originally noted by Wallerstein et al. (1999). For those stars the Wilson-Bappu Effect is not a useful method for deriving Mv. We discus the shape of the dispersion in log W0 at a given Mv and show that it is asymmetric. Individual measurements of logW0 are more likely to be above the mean rather than below it. This is probably due to intermittent activity that enhances the width of the Ca II emission line.

  17. Fine-Tuning ADAS Algorithm Parameters for Optimizing Traffic ...

    EPA Pesticide Factsheets

    With the development of the Connected Vehicle technology that facilitates wirelessly communication among vehicles and road-side infrastructure, the Advanced Driver Assistance Systems (ADAS) can be adopted as an effective tool for accelerating traffic safety and mobility optimization at various highway facilities. To this end, the traffic management centers identify the optimal ADAS algorithm parameter set that enables the maximum improvement of the traffic safety and mobility performance, and broadcast the optimal parameter set wirelessly to individual ADAS-equipped vehicles. After adopting the optimal parameter set, the ADAS-equipped drivers become active agents in the traffic stream that work collectively and consistently to prevent traffic conflicts, lower the intensity of traffic disturbances, and suppress the development of traffic oscillations into heavy traffic jams. Successful implementation of this objective requires the analysis capability of capturing the impact of the ADAS on driving behaviors, and measuring traffic safety and mobility performance under the influence of the ADAS. To address this challenge, this research proposes a synthetic methodology that incorporates the ADAS-affected driving behavior modeling and state-of-the-art microscopic traffic flow modeling into a virtually simulated environment. Building on such an environment, the optimal ADAS algorithm parameter set is identified through an optimization programming framework to enable th

  18. Forecasting RVF Outbreaks-FineTuning a Model

    USDA-ARS?s Scientific Manuscript database

    An outbreak of Rift Valley Fever, causing severe illness in more than 600 people, resulting in more than 150 deaths, occurred in several locations in Kenya from November 2006 until early March 2007. The symposium (I and II) will review the epidemic and present findings from the multi-faceted invest...

  19. A "New" ERIC Thesaurus, Fine Tuned for Searching.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Booth, Barbara

    1979-01-01

    Notes the history of the ERIC indexing vocabulary and the Identifier Cleanup undertaken to reduce scattering in the identifier field. Described in detail is the Vocabulary Improvement Project to review and revise the controlled vocabulary and produce a new Thesaurus of ERIC Descriptors. (CWM)

  20. Fine tuning of graphene properties by modification with aryl halogens.

    PubMed

    Bouša, D; Pumera, M; Sedmidubský, D; Šturala, J; Luxa, J; Mazánek, V; Sofer, Z

    2016-01-21

    Graphene and its derivatives belong to one of the most intensively studied materials. The radical reaction using halogen derivatives of arene-diazonium salts can be used for effective control of graphene's electronic properties. In our work we investigated the influence of halogen atoms (fluorine, chlorine, bromine and iodine) as well as their position on the benzene ring towards the electronic and electrochemical properties of modified graphenes. The electronegativity as well as the position of the halogen atoms on the benzene ring has crucial influence on graphene's properties due to the inductive and mesomeric effects. The results of resistivity measurement are in good agreement with the theoretical calculations of electron density within chemically modified graphene sheets. Such simple chemical modifications of graphene can be used for controllable and scalable synthesis of graphene with tunable transport properties.