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Sample records for identify potential indicators

  1. Identifying potential indicators of conservation value using natural heritage occurrence data.

    PubMed

    Pearman, Peter B; Penskar, Michael R; Schools, Edward H; Enander, Helen D

    2006-02-01

    Conservation planning based on the occurrence of rare species has been criticized as being too limited in scope to conserve biodiversity as a whole. Conversely, planning based on indicator taxa may lack sufficient focus to conserve those species in greatest need of conservation. An alternative approach is to identify a variety of species at risk that are associated with areas of conservation value, which is defined based on species-independent characteristics. We identified potential indicators of conservation value using occurrence data on species at risk and independent information on conservation value that incorporated indices of ecosystem integrity. We propose a taxonomically diverse group of indicator species that are strongly associated with areas of exceptional ecosystem integrity, to serve as a focus for further research and in planning for biodiversity conservation. We identify potential indicator species by defining a null model in which species at risk are equally associated with areas of high ecosystem integrity, then by conducting randomization tests to identify noncompliant species in the state of Michigan, USA. Areas of high ecosystem integrity are selected using criteria to flag (1) secure biotic communities with structural integrity and few exotic species, (2) natural areas subjected to expert review, (3) contiguous relict areas of forest interior, (4) contiguous areas of unmodified wetland, and (5) all these areas combined. We determine the spatial occurrence of species at risk using data from Michigan's statewide Natural Heritage database. The potential indicators include plants, insects, and birds. Their species identity and distribution of occurrences varies with the five scenarios, and together the species broadly cover the entire state. These species at risk, many of which occur throughout the Great Lakes region, may be used to identify additional areas potentially high in conservation value and to monitor their conservation. The ecological

  2. Visual Indicators on Vaccine Boxes as Early Warning Tools to Identify Potential Freeze Damage

    PubMed Central

    Angoff, Ronald; Wood, Jillian; Chernock, Maria C.; Tipping, Diane

    2015-01-01

    Background The aim of this study was to determine whether the use of visual freeze indicators on vaccines would assist health care providers in identifying vaccines that may have been exposed to potentially damaging temperatures. Methods Twenty-seven sites in Connecticut involved in the Vaccine for Children Program participated. In addition to standard procedures, visual freeze indicators (FREEZEmarker® L; Temptime Corporation, Morris Plains, NJ) were affixed to each box of vaccine that required refrigeration but must not be frozen. Temperatures were monitored twice daily. Results During the 24 weeks, all 27 sites experienced triggered visual freeze indicator events in 40 of the 45 refrigerators. A total of 66 triggered freeze indicator events occurred in all 4 types of refrigerators used. Only 1 of the freeze events was identified by a temperature-monitoring device. Temperatures recorded on vaccine data logs before freeze indicator events were within the 35°F to 46°F (2°C to 8°C) range in all but 1 instance. A total of 46,954 doses of freeze-sensitive vaccine were stored at the time of a visual freeze indicator event. Triggered visual freeze indicators were found on boxes containing 6566 doses (14.0% of total doses). Of all doses stored, 14,323 doses (30.5%) were of highly freeze-sensitive vaccine; 1789 of these doses (12.5%) had triggered indicators on the boxes. Conclusions Visual freeze indicators are useful in the early identification of freeze events involving vaccines. Consideration should be given to including these devices as a component of the temperature-monitoring system for vaccines. PMID:27330265

  3. Identifying Student Potential for ICT Entrepreneurship Using Myers-Briggs Personality Type Indicators

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Johnston, Kevin A.; Andersen, Barry K.; Davidge-Pitts, Jennifer; Ostensen-Saunders, Mark

    2009-01-01

    Literature relating to personality and entrepreneurship has focused primarily on personality characteristics of traditional entrepreneurs. The focus of this study was on personality characteristics and temperaments of potential Information and Communication Technology (ICT) entrepreneurs. The main objective of the study was to evaluate the…

  4. Identifying potential academic leaders

    PubMed Central

    White, David; Krueger, Paul; Meaney, Christopher; Antao, Viola; Kim, Florence; Kwong, Jeffrey C.

    2016-01-01

    Objective To identify variables associated with willingness to undertake leadership roles among academic family medicine faculty. Design Web-based survey. Bivariate and multivariable analyses (logistic regression) were used to identify variables associated with willingness to undertake leadership roles. Setting Department of Family and Community Medicine at the University of Toronto in Ontario. Participants A total of 687 faculty members. Main outcome measures Variables related to respondents’ willingness to take on various academic leadership roles. Results Of all 1029 faculty members invited to participate in the survey, 687 (66.8%) members responded. Of the respondents, 596 (86.8%) indicated their level of willingness to take on various academic leadership roles. Multivariable analysis revealed that the predictors associated with willingness to take on leadership roles were as follows: pursuit of professional development opportunities (odds ratio [OR] 3.79, 95% CI 2.29 to 6.27); currently holding at least 1 leadership role (OR 5.37, 95% CI 3.38 to 8.53); a history of leadership training (OR 1.86, 95% CI 1.25 to 2.78); the perception that mentorship is important for one’s current role (OR 2.25, 95% CI 1.40 to 3.60); and younger age (OR 0.97, 95% CI 0.95 to 0.99). Conclusion Willingness to undertake new or additional leadership roles was associated with 2 variables related to leadership experiences, 2 variables related to perceptions of mentorship and professional development, and 1 demographic variable (younger age). Interventions that support opportunities in these areas might expand the pool and strengthen the academic leadership potential of faculty members. PMID:27331226

  5. Direct and indirect indicators to identify potential leakage of contaminants associated with unconventional oil and gas development based on conceptual geochemical and isotopic monitoring approaches

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Humez, P.; Mayer, B.; Negrel, P. J.; Lions, J.; Lagneau, V.; Kloppmann, W.; Ing, J.; Becker, V.; Nightingale, M.

    2014-12-01

    The extraction of tightly bound natural gas and oil raises environmental concerns regarding shallow drinking water resources. These concerns include impacts of migration of contaminants through induced and natural fractures, drilling imperfections, wastewater discharge and accidental spills. Improved understanding of the fate and transport of contaminants through long-term monitoring, and sharing of data between industry, regulators and researchers will help to effectively manage risks for shallow water resources associated with the unconventional gas and oil industry. Based on the North-American experiences related to unconventional oil and gas resources and monitoring approaches developed in the Carbon Capture and Storage (CCS) context, we suggest conceptual models for monitoring the potential contamination of shallow aquifers overlying production zones. The strength of sensitive geochemical tracers is demonstrated based on conceptual approaches (e.g. diffusion model) and field and tracer studies (e.g. geochemical and isotopic monitoring) with three objectives: 1) characterize subsurface derived contaminants as direct geochemical and isotopic indicators; 2) assess geochemical processes enhanced by the fluid intrusion; 3) understand parameters and processes which could impact or alter the geochemical and isotopic signatures of the contaminants (e.g. microbial oxidation, migration or transport processes etc.) to determine indirect indicators of potential contaminant leakage. This comprehensive geochemical and isotope approach using direct and indirect indicators with the analyses of major and minor ions, trace elements, and δ11B, δ7Li, δ34SSO4, δ18OSO4, 87Sr/86Sr, δ18OH2O, and δ2HH2O values in the CO2FIELDLAB project (Humez et al., 2014) allowed discriminating reactive mechanisms from non-reactive mixing processes associated with gas leakage within a shallow aquifer. These and other results indicate that this conceptual approach is promising for monitoring

  6. Identifying indicators during pregnancy for child maltreatment.

    PubMed

    Thompson, Erika L; Thompson, Lindsay A; Black, Erik W; Esernio-Jenssen, Debra; Hardt, Nancy; Das, Rajeeb; Roth, Jeffrey

    2013-12-01

    To measure the effect of a short interpregnancy interval (IPI), along with other indicators routinely asked during pregnancy on later report of child maltreatment. We hypothesized that an IPI of <18 months was associated with increased risk of child maltreatment. This study was a secondary analysis of a linked population-based dataset from 2005 to 2007 in Florida. Data were derived from three sources: Birth Certificates, Healthy Start Prenatal Risk Screens, and the HomeSafeNet Database. Primary predictor variables were IPI, and mothers' evaluations of the timing of the pregnancy and perceptions of harm. Logistic regression analyses were used to estimate the odds of child maltreatment, adjusting for demographic and other known risk factors for maltreatment. The final study sample consisted of 85,258 multipara women-infant dyads with credible IPIs and with completed Healthy Start Prenatal Risk Screens. Seventeen percent of children had a report of child maltreatment in the first 5 years of life. An IPI of less than 18 months was associated with 18 % higher odds of maltreatment compared to an IPI of greater than 18 months (95 % CI 1.13, 1.23). Mothers' perception of harm and desire to be pregnant at a later time were also significantly associated with higher odds of maltreatment report (AOR = 2.43 95 % CI = 2.17, 2.71 and AOR = 1.18 95 % CI 1.13, 1.24, respectively). Ascertaining short IPI and asking pregnant and peripartum women about their perception of harm and desire for a longer birth spacing can alert obstetricians, family practitioners and pediatricians to potential child maltreatment.

  7. Identifying the potential rural optometrist.

    PubMed

    Kegel-Flom, P

    1976-09-01

    Rural optometrists were found to differ from urban optometrists in background, environmental attitude, and interest patterns. Attitude toward the urban environment and place of origin were the best predictors of an optometrist's practice location. When "urbanism" and "origin" were scaled and placed in a multiple regression equation to predict practice location, identification of an optometrist's location as rural or urban was highly accurate. Most importantly, scores on the equation were predictive of optometry students' future practice locations. A single cut-off point on the equation correctly identified 79% of students who entered rural or isolated small city practice and 81% of those who entered urban practice. The findings suggest that optometry students most likely to enter rural (or indeed urban) practice can be objectively identified early in, or even prior to, training. Such identification may assist educators in selecting and training optometrists who will deliver vision care to people in areas of greatest need.

  8. Imaging action potentials with calcium indicators.

    PubMed

    MacLean, Jason N; Yuste, Rafael

    2009-11-01

    The understanding of neuronal circuits has been, and will continue to be, greatly advanced by the simultaneous imaging of action potentials in neuronal ensembles. This protocol describes "bulk" loading of brain slices with acetoxymethyl (AM) ester calcium indicators in order to monitor action potential activity in large populations of neurons simultaneously. The imaging of calcium influx into neurons provides an indirect, but accurate, measure of action potential generation in individual neurons. Single-cell resolution, and thus the easy identification of every active cell, is the key advantage of the technique.

  9. Identifying node role in social network based on multiple indicators.

    PubMed

    Huang, Shaobin; Lv, Tianyang; Zhang, Xizhe; Yang, Yange; Zheng, Weimin; Wen, Chao

    2014-01-01

    It is a classic topic of social network analysis to evaluate the importance of nodes and identify the node that takes on the role of core or bridge in a network. Because a single indicator is not sufficient to analyze multiple characteristics of a node, it is a natural solution to apply multiple indicators that should be selected carefully. An intuitive idea is to select some indicators with weak correlations to efficiently assess different characteristics of a node. However, this paper shows that it is much better to select the indicators with strong correlations. Because indicator correlation is based on the statistical analysis of a large number of nodes, the particularity of an important node will be outlined if its indicator relationship doesn't comply with the statistical correlation. Therefore, the paper selects the multiple indicators including degree, ego-betweenness centrality and eigenvector centrality to evaluate the importance and the role of a node. The importance of a node is equal to the normalized sum of its three indicators. A candidate for core or bridge is selected from the great degree nodes or the nodes with great ego-betweenness centrality respectively. Then, the role of a candidate is determined according to the difference between its indicators' relationship with the statistical correlation of the overall network. Based on 18 real networks and 3 kinds of model networks, the experimental results show that the proposed methods perform quite well in evaluating the importance of nodes and in identifying the node role.

  10. Identifying Indicators Related to Constructs for Engineering Design Outcome

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Wilhelmsen, Cheryl A.; Dixon, Raymond A.

    2016-01-01

    This study ranked constructs articulated by Childress and Rhodes (2008) and identified the key indicators for each construct as a starting point to explore what should be included on an instrument to measure the engineering design process and outcomes of students in high schools that use the PLTW and EbDTM curricula in Idaho. A case-study design…

  11. Identifying Basketball Performance Indicators in Regular Season and Playoff Games

    PubMed Central

    García, Javier; Ibáñez, Sergio J.; De Santos, Raúl Martinez; Leite, Nuno; Sampaio, Jaime

    2013-01-01

    The aim of the present study was to identify basketball game performance indicators which best discriminate winners and losers in regular season and playoffs. The sample used was composed by 323 games of ACB Spanish Basketball League from the regular season (n=306) and from the playoffs (n=17). A previous cluster analysis allowed splitting the sample in balanced (equal or below 12 points), unbalanced (between 13 and 28 points) and very unbalanced games (above 28 points). A discriminant analysis was used to identify the performance indicators either in regular season and playoff games. In regular season games, the winning teams dominated in assists, defensive rebounds, successful 2 and 3-point field-goals. However, in playoff games the winning teams’ superiority was only in defensive rebounding. In practical applications, these results may help the coaches to accurately design training programs to reflect the importance of having different offensive set plays and also have specific conditioning programs to prepare for defensive rebounding. PMID:23717365

  12. Identifying potential PARIS homologs in D. melanogaster.

    PubMed

    Merzetti, E M; Staveley, B E

    2016-11-03

    Mitochondrial destruction leads to the formation of reactive oxygen species, increases cellular stress, causes apoptotic cell death, and involves a cascade of proteins including PARKIN, PINK1, and Mitofusin2. Mitochondrial biogenesis pathways depend upon the activity of the protein PGC-1α. These two processes are coordinated by the activity of a transcriptional repressor, Parkin interacting substrate (PARIS). The PARIS protein is degraded through the activity of the PARKIN protein, which in turn eliminates the transcriptional repression that PARIS imposes upon a downstream target, PGC-1α. Genes in this pathway have been implicated in Parkinson's disease, and there is a strong relationship between mitochondrial dysfunction and pre-mature neuron death. The identification of a PARIS homolog in Drosophila melanogaster would increase our understanding of the roles that PARIS and interacting genes play in higher organisms. We identified three potential PARIS homologs in D. melanogaster, one of which encodes a protein with similar domains to the Homo sapiens PARIS protein, CG15436. The Drosophila eye is formed from neuronal precursors, making it an ideal system to assay the effects of altered gene expression on neuronal tissue formation. The eye-specific expression of RNAi constructs for these genes revealed that both CG15269 and Crol caused neurodegenerative phenotypes, whereas CG15436 produced a phenotype similar to srl-EY. Crol-RNAi expression reduced mean lifespan when expressed in dopaminergic neurons, whereas CG15436-RNAi significantly increased lifespan. CG15436 was PARIS-like in both structure and function, and we characterized the effects of decreased gene expression in both the neuron-rich D. melanogaster eye and in dopaminergic neurons.

  13. Solution Potentials Indicate Aluminum-Alloy Tempers

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Danford, M. D.

    1985-01-01

    Report discusses use of solution potential as measure of temper of aluminum alloys. Technique based on fact that different tempers or heat treatments exhibit different solution potentials as function of aging time.

  14. Identifying early indicators in bipolar disorder: a qualitative study.

    PubMed

    Benti, Liliane; Manicavasagar, Vijaya; Proudfoot, Judy; Parker, Gordon

    2014-06-01

    The identification of early markers has become a focus for early intervention in bipolar disorder. Using a retrospective, qualitative methodology, the present study compares the early experiences of participants with bipolar disorder to those with unipolar depression up until their first diagnosed episode. The study focuses on differences in early home and school environments as well as putative differences in personality characteristics between the two groups. Finally we a compare and contrast prodromal symptoms in these two populations. Thirty-nine participants, 20 diagnosed with unipolar depression and 19 diagnosed with bipolar disorder, took part in the study. A semi-structured interview was developed to elicit information about participants' experiences prior to their first episode. Participants with bipolar disorder reported disruptive home environments, driven personality features, greater emotion dysregulation and adverse experiences during the school years, whereas participants with depression tended to describe more supportive home environments, and more compliant and introvert personality traits. Retrospective data collection and no corroborative evidence from other family members. No distinction was made between bipolar I and bipolar II disorder nor between melancholic and non-melancholic depression in the sample. Finally the study spanned over a 12-month period which does not allow for the possibility of diagnostic reassignment of some of the bipolar participants to the unipolar condition. These findings indicate that there may be benefits in combining both proximal and distal indicators in identifying a bipolar disorder phenotype which, in turn, may be relevant to the development of early intervention programs for young people with bipolar disorder.

  15. Skin Potential as an Indicator of Emotion

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Seligman, Linda

    1975-01-01

    The skin-potential responses of six college students were monitored while each was seen for 10 counseling sessions. Negative skin-potential responses were accompanied by feelings described as pleasant and released; positive responses were associated with unpleasant and inhibited feelings; and neutral responses were often associated with unpleasant…

  16. Life Potential as a Basic Demographic Indicator

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Goerlich, Francisco J.; Soler, Angel

    2013-01-01

    This paper proposes an indicator that integrates life expectancy with the demographic structure of the population for a given society. By doing this, we have a simple indicator of mortality and aging combined, which could be very useful for developed societies. As is widely known, life expectancy at birth is independent of the demographic…

  17. Identifying Potential Dropouts: A Research Report.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Martin, Donald L., Jr.

    While the educational structure seems to meet the needs of most students, a small but significant minority does not see the need to complete high school. To improve the identification of potential dropouts and describe the differences between dropouts and persisters, 536 Kentucky high school students and dropouts were studied. An unexpected…

  18. Identifying mechanistic indicators of childhood asthma from blood gene expression

    EPA Science Inventory

    Asthmatic individuals have been identified as a susceptible subpopulation for air pollutants. However, asthma represents a syndrome with multiple probable etiologies, and the identification of these asthma endotypes is critical to accurately define the most susceptible subpopula...

  19. Identifying Quality Indicators of SAE and FFA: A Delphi Approach

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Jenkins, Charles Cordell, III; Kitchel, Tracy

    2009-01-01

    The purpose of this study was to determine quality indicators for SAE and FFA according to 36 experts across the United States. This is a part of a larger study looking at all components of the traditional three-circle model. The study utilized the Delphi technique to garner expert opinion about quality indicators in Agricultural Education. For…

  20. Analysis of gene expression profile identifies potential biomarkers for atherosclerosis

    PubMed Central

    Liu, Luran; Liu, Yan; Liu, Chang; Zhang, Zhuobo; Du, Yaojun; Zhao, Hao

    2016-01-01

    The present study aimed to identify potential biomarkers for atherosclerosis via analysis of gene expression profiles. The microarray dataset no. GSE20129 was downloaded from the Gene Expression Omnibus database. A total of 118 samples from the peripheral blood of female patients was used, including 47 atherosclerotic and 71 non-atherosclerotic patients. The differentially expressed genes (DEGs) in the atherosclerosis samples were identified using the Limma package. Gene ontology term and Kyoto Encyclopedia of Genes and Genomes pathway analyses for DEGs were performed using the Database for Annotation, Visualization and Integrated Discovery tool. The recursive feature elimination (RFE) algorithm was applied for feature selection via iterative classification, and support vector machine classifier was used for the validation of prediction accuracy. A total of 430 DEGs in the atherosclerosis samples were identified, including 149 up- and 281 downregulated genes. Subsequently, the RFE algorithm was used to identify 11 biomarkers, whose receiver operating characteristic curves had an area under curve of 0.92, indicating that the identified 11 biomarkers were representative. The present study indicated that APH1B, JAM3, FBLN2, CSAD and PSTPIP2 may have important roles in the progression of atherosclerosis in females and may be potential biomarkers for early diagnosis and prognosis as well as treatment targets for this disease. PMID:27573188

  1. Identifying potential dropouts from college physics classes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wollman, Warren; Lawrenz, Frances

    Hudson and Rottman (1981) established that mathematics ability is probably a secondary factor influencing dropout from college physics courses. Other factors remain to be found for predicting who will drop out or at least have difficulty with the course. When mathematics ability is coupled with general indicators of performance (total GPA and ACT natural science), prediction of performance for those who complete the course is substantially improved. Moreover, discriminant analyses reveal who will have at least some difficulty, but not who will drop out. The problem of isolating specific weaknesses of students who have difficulty persists. Physics achievement appears to depend on mathematics ability only to the extent that students possess the ability to utilize mathematics knowledge for solving physics problems. Identification of the specific aspects of this ability as well as the specific deficiencies leading to dropout should be the object of future research. For the present, interviews might be more revealing than group testing methods.

  2. Identifying indicators through modified Delphi technique in polytechnics system

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Nashir, Irdayanti Mat; Mustapha, Ramlee; Yusoff, Abdullah

    2015-02-01

    This study aims to examine how the panel has been selected as experts in assessing indicators of innovative instructional leadership (IIL) administrator in polytechnics based on 222 items were obtained through previous studies. A total of eleven people were selected as the expert panels in a study where expert selection criteria based on their background in the leadership. Experts were interviewed separately. Interviews were carried out for a half hour in their offices. The data obtained were analyzed using Atlas Ti. Overall findings indicate experts agree that a total of 188 items and 14 indicators should be maintained in this innovative instructional leadership instruments and next by using Modified Delphi Technique. The instrument will then be analyzed to obtain findings on the perception of lecturers on every administrator innovative instructional leadership in their respective polytechnics.

  3. Chrysophyte cysts as potential environmental indicators.

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Adam, D.P.; Mahood, A.D.

    1981-01-01

    Many chrysophyte algae produce morphologically distinctive, siliceous, microscopic cysts during a resting stage of their life cycles; these cysts are often preserved in sediments. Scanning electron microscopy and Nomarski optics permit much more detailed observation of these cysts than was heretofore possible. Many cyst types are found only in specific habitats, such as montane lakes, wet meadows, ephemeral ponds, and Sphagnum bogs. In the samples studied, cysts seem to be most common in fluctuating fresh-water habitats of low to moderate pH and some winter freezing. Chrysophyte cysts have the potential to be a useful tool for modern environmental assessments and paleoecological studies of Cenozoic fresh-water lacustrine deposits. -from Authors

  4. Chrysophyte cysts as potential environmental indicators

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Adam, David P.; Mahood, Albert D.

    1981-01-01

    Many Chrysophyte algae produce morphologically distinctive, siliceous, microscopic cysts during a resting stage of their life cycles; these cysts are often preserved in sediments. Scanning electron microscopy and Nomarski optics permit much more detailed observation of these cysts than was heretofore possible. We have used an ecologic and biogeographic approach to study the distribution of cyst forms in sediments and have established that many cyst types are found only in specific habitats, such as montane lakes, wet meadows, ephemeral ponds, and Sphagnum bogs. In the samples we have studied, cysts seem to be most common in fluctuating fresh-water habitats of low to moderate pH and some winter freezing. Numerous taxonomic problems have yet to be resolved. We believe that chrysophyte cysts have the potential to become a useful tool for both modern environmental assessments and paleoecological studies of Cenozoic fresh-water lacustrine deposits.

  5. [Methylphenidate: pharmacology, indication and potential of abuse].

    PubMed

    Tagaya, Hirokuni

    2010-08-01

    Methylphenidate enhances dopaminergic neurotransmission in the central nervous system by same manner with cocaine and amphetamine that bind to the dopamine transporter and inhibit dopamine uptake. Methylphenidate improves social functions as well as clinical symptoms of patients suffered of narcolepsy and attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), though it has the potential of abuse. It is reported that approximately 4% of older teens and emerging adults in the US annually misusing methylphenidate. Non-medical/illegal use of methylphenidate causes many consequences including addiction, negative reactions and medical complications. Growing number of illegal trades of methylphenidate and medical complications caused by misuse of methylphenidate urged Japanese government to introduce regulations limiting access to prescribed methylphenidate in 2008.

  6. Selection indices to identify drought-tolerant grain sorghum cultivars.

    PubMed

    Menezes, C B; Ticona-Benavente, C A; Tardin, F D; Cardoso, M J; Bastos, E A; Nogueira, D W; Portugal, A F; Santos, C V; Schaffert, R E

    2014-11-27

    Twenty-five cultivars of grain sorghum [Sorghum bicolor (L.) Moench] were examined under both drought stress and normal conditions in 4 experiments. In each condition, genotypes were evaluated in a factorial experiment using a randomized complete block design with 3 replications. Eight drought tolerance indices including stability tolerance index, mean productivity (MP), geometric MP, harmonic mean, stress susceptibility index, tolerance index, yield index, and yield stability index were estimated for each genotype based on grain yield under drought (Ys) and irrigated conditions (Yp). The results indicated that there were positive and significant correlations among Yp and Ys with geometric MP, MP, harmonic mean, and stability tolerance index, indicating that these factors are better predictors of Yp and Ys than tolerance index, stress susceptibility index, yield stability index, and yield index. Based on adjusted means at Yp and Ys, indices geometric MP, MP, harmonic mean, and stability tolerance index, unweighted pair group method with arithmetic mean cluster and biplot analysis, the most tolerant cultivars were '9929020', '9929034', and 'N 95B'.

  7. Identifying Indicators of Written Expression Proficiency for Middle School Students.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Espin, Christine; Shin, Jongho; Deno, Stanley L.; Skare, Stacy; Robinson, Steven; Benner, Barb

    2000-01-01

    A study examined the reliability and validity of curriculum-based measurement indicators in written expression for 112 middle school students. The most reliable and valid predictor of student writing proficiency as measured by both teacher ratings and a district writing test was correct minus incorrect word sequences. (Contains references.)…

  8. Accomplishing structural change: identifying intermediate indicators of success.

    PubMed

    Miller, Robin Lin; Reed, Sarah J; Francisco, Vincent

    2013-03-01

    Coalitions are routinely employed across the United States as a method of mobilizing communities to improve local conditions that impact on citizens' well-being. Success in achieving specific objectives for environmental or structural community change may not quickly translate into improved population outcomes in the community, posing a dilemma for coalitions that pursue changes that focus on altering community conditions. Considerable effort by communities to plan for and pursue structural change objectives, without evidence of logical and appropriate intermediate markers of success could lead to wasted effort. Yet, the current literature provides little guidance on how coalitions might select intermediate indicators of achievement to judge their progress and the utility of their effort. The current paper explores the strengths and weaknesses of various indicators of intermediate success in creating structural changes among a sample of 13 coalitions organized to prevent exposure to HIV among high-risk adolescents in their local communities.

  9. Identifying indicators of reactivity for chemical reductants in sediments.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Huichun; Weber, Eric J

    2013-07-02

    To conduct site-specific exposure assessments for contaminants containing reducible functional groups, it is imperative to know the identity and reactivity of chemical reductants in natural sediments and to associate their reactivity with easily measurable sediment properties. For this purpose the reactivity, as defined by pseudofirst order reduction rate constants for p-cyanonitrobenzene (pCNB), was measured in twenty-one natural sediments of different origins that were incubated to attain both anoxic (less reducing) and anaerobic (microbially reducing) conditions. The reactivity of the anoxic sediments increased with pH and an increasing amount of Fe(II) added. A good electron balance between pCNB reduction and Fe(II) consumption was observed for anaerobic sediments of high solids loading (50 g/L), but not when solids loading was 5 g/L. Based on cluster and regression analysis, pCNB reactivity in the anaerobic sediments correlates strongly with aqueous Fe(II) concentrations for sediments with low organic carbon (OC) content (<4.2%), but with dissolved OC concentrations (DOC) for the sediments with high OC content (>6.4%). These observations indicate surface-associated Fe(II) and reduced DOC are the predominant reductants in the anaerobic sediments, and that aqueous Fe(II) and DOC will serve as readily measurable indicators of pCNB reactivity in these systems.

  10. Exome Sequencing Identifies Potentially Druggable Mutations in Nasopharyngeal Carcinoma

    PubMed Central

    Chow, Yock Ping; Tan, Lu Ping; Chai, San Jiun; Abdul Aziz, Norazlin; Choo, Siew Woh; Lim, Paul Vey Hong; Pathmanathan, Rajadurai; Mohd Kornain, Noor Kaslina; Lum, Chee Lun; Pua, Kin Choo; Yap, Yoke Yeow; Tan, Tee Yong; Teo, Soo Hwang; Khoo, Alan Soo-Beng; Patel, Vyomesh

    2017-01-01

    In this study, we first performed whole exome sequencing of DNA from 10 untreated and clinically annotated fresh frozen nasopharyngeal carcinoma (NPC) biopsies and matched bloods to identify somatically mutated genes that may be amenable to targeted therapeutic strategies. We identified a total of 323 mutations which were either non-synonymous (n = 238) or synonymous (n = 85). Furthermore, our analysis revealed genes in key cancer pathways (DNA repair, cell cycle regulation, apoptosis, immune response, lipid signaling) were mutated, of which those in the lipid-signaling pathway were the most enriched. We next extended our analysis on a prioritized sub-set of 37 mutated genes plus top 5 mutated cancer genes listed in COSMIC using a custom designed HaloPlex target enrichment panel with an additional 88 NPC samples. Our analysis identified 160 additional non-synonymous mutations in 37/42 genes in 66/88 samples. Of these, 99/160 mutations within potentially druggable pathways were further selected for validation. Sanger sequencing revealed that 77/99 variants were true positives, giving an accuracy of 78%. Taken together, our study indicated that ~72% (n = 71/98) of NPC samples harbored mutations in one of the four cancer pathways (EGFR-PI3K-Akt-mTOR, NOTCH, NF-κB, DNA repair) which may be potentially useful as predictive biomarkers of response to matched targeted therapies. PMID:28256603

  11. Identifying indicators of illegal behaviour: carnivore killing in human-managed landscapes

    PubMed Central

    St John, Freya A. V.; Keane, Aidan M.; Edwards-Jones, Gareth; Jones, Lauren; Yarnell, Richard W.; Jones, Julia P. G.

    2012-01-01

    Managing natural resources often depends on influencing people's behaviour, however effectively targeting interventions to discourage environmentally harmful behaviours is challenging because those involved may be unwilling to identify themselves. Non-sensitive indicators of sensitive behaviours are therefore needed. Previous studies have investigated people's attitudes, assuming attitudes reflect behaviour. There has also been interest in using people's estimates of the proportion of their peers involved in sensitive behaviours to identify those involved, since people tend to assume that others behave like themselves. However, there has been little attempt to test the potential of such indicators. We use the randomized response technique (RRT), designed for investigating sensitive behaviours, to estimate the proportion of farmers in north-eastern South Africa killing carnivores, and use a modified logistic regression model to explore relationships between our best estimates of true behaviour (from RRT) and our proposed non-sensitive indicators (including farmers' attitudes, and estimates of peer-behaviour). Farmers' attitudes towards carnivores, question sensitivity and estimates of peers' behaviour, predict the likelihood of farmers killing carnivores. Attitude and estimates of peer-behaviour are useful indicators of involvement in illicit behaviours and may be used to identify groups of people to engage in interventions aimed at changing behaviour. PMID:21795272

  12. Identifying indicators of illegal behaviour: carnivore killing in human-managed landscapes.

    PubMed

    St John, Freya A V; Keane, Aidan M; Edwards-Jones, Gareth; Jones, Lauren; Yarnell, Richard W; Jones, Julia P G

    2012-02-22

    Managing natural resources often depends on influencing people's behaviour, however effectively targeting interventions to discourage environmentally harmful behaviours is challenging because those involved may be unwilling to identify themselves. Non-sensitive indicators of sensitive behaviours are therefore needed. Previous studies have investigated people's attitudes, assuming attitudes reflect behaviour. There has also been interest in using people's estimates of the proportion of their peers involved in sensitive behaviours to identify those involved, since people tend to assume that others behave like themselves. However, there has been little attempt to test the potential of such indicators. We use the randomized response technique (RRT), designed for investigating sensitive behaviours, to estimate the proportion of farmers in north-eastern South Africa killing carnivores, and use a modified logistic regression model to explore relationships between our best estimates of true behaviour (from RRT) and our proposed non-sensitive indicators (including farmers' attitudes, and estimates of peer-behaviour). Farmers' attitudes towards carnivores, question sensitivity and estimates of peers' behaviour, predict the likelihood of farmers killing carnivores. Attitude and estimates of peer-behaviour are useful indicators of involvement in illicit behaviours and may be used to identify groups of people to engage in interventions aimed at changing behaviour.

  13. Identifying potential kidney donors using social networking web sites.

    PubMed

    Chang, Alexander; Anderson, Emily E; Turner, Hang T; Shoham, David; Hou, Susan H; Grams, Morgan

    2013-01-01

    Social networking sites like Facebook may be a powerful tool for increasing rates of live kidney donation. They allow for wide dissemination of information and discussion and could lessen anxiety associated with a face-to-face request for donation. However, sparse data exist on the use of social media for this purpose. We searched Facebook, the most popular social networking site, for publicly available English-language pages seeking kidney donors for a specific individual, abstracting information on the potential recipient, characteristics of the page itself, and whether potential donors were tested. In the 91 pages meeting inclusion criteria, the mean age of potential recipients was 37 (range: 2-69); 88% were US residents. Other posted information included the individual's photograph (76%), blood type (64%), cause of kidney disease (43%), and location (71%). Thirty-two percent of pages reported having potential donors tested, and 10% reported receiving a live-donor kidney transplant. Those reporting donor testing shared more potential recipient characteristics, provided more information about transplantation, and had higher page traffic. Facebook is already being used to identify potential kidney donors. Future studies should focus on how to safely, ethically, and effectively use social networking sites to inform potential donors and potentially expand live kidney donation.

  14. COLIPHAGES AS POTENTIAL VIRAL INDICATORS OF FECAL POLLUTION

    EPA Science Inventory

    Friedman, Stephanie D. In press. Coliphages as Potential Viral Indicators of Fecal Pollution (Abstract). To be presented at the SWS/GERS Fall Joint Society Meeting: Communication and Collaboration: Coastal Systems of the Gulf of Mexico and Southeastern United States, 6-9 October ...

  15. Urinary peptidomics identifies potential biomarkers for major depressive disorder.

    PubMed

    Wang, Ying; Chen, Jianjun; Chen, Liang; Zheng, Peng; Xu, Hong-Bo; Lu, Jia; Zhong, Jiaju; Lei, Yang; Zhou, Chanjuan; Ma, Qingwei; Li, Yan; Xie, Peng

    2014-06-30

    Major depressive disorder (MDD) is a debilitating psychiatric illness with no available objective laboratory-based diagnostic test. In this study, matrix-assisted laser desorption ionization time-of-flight mass spectrometry (MALDI-TOF MS)-based peptidomics was applied to identify potential urinary diagnostic biomarkers for MDD. A training set of 42 first-episode drug-naive MDD patients and 28 age- and gender-matched healthy controls (HC) was used to develop a peptide diagnostic pattern. Then, the diagnostic efficacy of this pattern was assessed in an independent blinded test set consisting of 24 MDD patients and 13 age- and gender-matched HC. A combination of five potential biomarkers was identified, yielding a sensitivity of 91.7% and specificity of 84.6% in the test set. Moreover, the protein precursors of four of the five peptides were identified by tandem mass spectrometric analysis: serum albumin, apolipoprotein A-I, protein AMBP, and basement membrane-specific heparan sulfate proteoglycan core protein. Taken together, the peptide pattern may be valuable for establishing an objective laboratory-based diagnostic test for MDD.

  16. Identifying psychophysiological indices of expert vs. novice performance in deadly force judgment and decision making

    PubMed Central

    Johnson, Robin R.; Stone, Bradly T.; Miranda, Carrie M.; Vila, Bryan; James, Lois; James, Stephen M.; Rubio, Roberto F.; Berka, Chris

    2014-01-01

    Objective: To demonstrate that psychophysiology may have applications for objective assessment of expertise development in deadly force judgment and decision making (DFJDM). Background: Modern training techniques focus on improving decision-making skills with participative assessment between trainees and subject matter experts primarily through subjective observation. Objective metrics need to be developed. The current proof of concept study explored the potential for psychophysiological metrics in deadly force judgment contexts. Method: Twenty-four participants (novice, expert) were recruited. All wore a wireless Electroencephalography (EEG) device to collect psychophysiological data during high-fidelity simulated deadly force judgment and decision-making simulations using a modified Glock firearm. Participants were exposed to 27 video scenarios, one-third of which would have justified use of deadly force. Pass/fail was determined by whether the participant used deadly force appropriately. Results: Experts had a significantly higher pass rate compared to novices (p < 0.05). Multiple metrics were shown to distinguish novices from experts. Hierarchical regression analyses indicate that psychophysiological variables are able to explain 72% of the variability in expert performance, but only 37% in novices. Discriminant function analysis (DFA) using psychophysiological metrics was able to discern between experts and novices with 72.6% accuracy. Conclusion: While limited due to small sample size, the results suggest that psychophysiology may be developed for use as an objective measure of expertise in DFDJM. Specifically, discriminant function measures may have the potential to objectively identify expert skill acquisition. Application: Psychophysiological metrics may create a performance model with the potential to optimize simulator-based DFJDM training. These performance models could be used for trainee feedback, and/or by the instructor to assess performance

  17. Student Teaching Behaviors Identified by a National Jury as Indicators of Success in Sixteen Competency Areas.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Snider, Sarah J.; Butefish, William L.

    This study identified specific student teacher behaviors which could indicate success in 16 teaching competency areas. Part 1 of the study, completed by student teaching supervisors, resulted in the identification of the student teaching behaviors considered to be indications of success in each of the 16 competency areas. Part 2 resulted in the…

  18. Identifying potential cancer driver genes by genomic data integration

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chen, Yong; Hao, Jingjing; Jiang, Wei; He, Tong; Zhang, Xuegong; Jiang, Tao; Jiang, Rui

    2013-12-01

    Cancer is a genomic disease associated with a plethora of gene mutations resulting in a loss of control over vital cellular functions. Among these mutated genes, driver genes are defined as being causally linked to oncogenesis, while passenger genes are thought to be irrelevant for cancer development. With increasing numbers of large-scale genomic datasets available, integrating these genomic data to identify driver genes from aberration regions of cancer genomes becomes an important goal of cancer genome analysis and investigations into mechanisms responsible for cancer development. A computational method, MAXDRIVER, is proposed here to identify potential driver genes on the basis of copy number aberration (CNA) regions of cancer genomes, by integrating publicly available human genomic data. MAXDRIVER employs several optimization strategies to construct a heterogeneous network, by means of combining a fused gene functional similarity network, gene-disease associations and a disease phenotypic similarity network. MAXDRIVER was validated to effectively recall known associations among genes and cancers. Previously identified as well as novel driver genes were detected by scanning CNAs of breast cancer, melanoma and liver carcinoma. Three predicted driver genes (CDKN2A, AKT1, RNF139) were found common in these three cancers by comparative analysis.

  19. Newer Approaches to Identify Potential Untoward Effects in Functional Foods.

    PubMed

    Marone, Palma Ann; Birkenbach, Victoria L; Hayes, A Wallace

    2016-01-01

    Globalization has greatly accelerated the numbers and variety of food and beverage products available worldwide. The exchange among greater numbers of countries, manufacturers, and products in the United States and worldwide has necessitated enhanced quality measures for nutritional products for larger populations increasingly reliant on functionality. These functional foods, those that provide benefit beyond basic nutrition, are increasingly being used for their potential to alleviate food insufficiency while enhancing quality and longevity of life. In the United States alone, a steady import increase of greater than 15% per year or 24 million shipments, over 70% products of which are food related, is regulated under the Food and Drug Administration (FDA). This unparalleled growth has resulted in the need for faster, cheaper, and better safety and efficacy screening methods in the form of harmonized guidelines and recommendations for product standardization. In an effort to meet this need, the in vitro toxicology testing market has similarly grown with an anticipatory 15% increase between 2010 and 2015 of US$1.3 to US$2.7 billion. Although traditionally occupying a small fraction of the market behind pharmaceuticals and cosmetic/household products, the scope of functional food testing, including additives/supplements, ingredients, residues, contact/processing, and contaminants, is potentially expansive. Similarly, as functional food testing has progressed, so has the need to identify potential adverse factors that threaten the safety and quality of these products.

  20. Potentials for Soil Enzyme as Indicators of Ecological Management

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Senwo, Z. N.; Manu, A.; Coleman, T. L.

    1997-01-01

    Activity measurements of selected soil enzymes (cellulase, glucosidase, amidohydrolase, phosphatase, arylsulfatase) involved in carbon, nitrogen, phosphorus, and sulfur cycling in the biosphere, hold potential as early and sensitive indicators of soil ecological stress and restoration, These measurements are advantageous because the procedures are simple, rapid, and reproducible over time. Enzyme activities are sensitive to short-term changes in soil and kind-use management. Enzyme activities have also been observed to be closely related to soil organic matter proposed as an index of soil quality.

  1. Potential of DNA sequences to identify zoanthids (Cnidaria: Zoantharia).

    PubMed

    Sinniger, Frederic; Reimer, James D; Pawlowski, Jan

    2008-12-01

    The order Zoantharia is known for its chaotic taxonomy and difficult morphological identification. One method that potentially could help for examining such troublesome taxa is DNA barcoding, which identifies species using standard molecular markers. The mitochondrial cytochrome oxidase subunit I (COI) has been utilized to great success in groups such as birds and insects; however, its applicability in many other groups is controversial. Recently, some studies have suggested that barcoding is not applicable to anthozoans. Here, we examine the use of COI and mitochondrial 16S ribosomal DNA for zoanthid identification. Despite the absence of a clear barcoding gap, our results show that for most of 54 zoanthid samples, both markers could separate samples to the species, or species group, level, particularly when easily accessible ecological or distributional data were included. Additionally, we have used the short V5 region of mt 16S rDNA to identify eight old (13 to 50 years old) museum samples. We discuss advantages and disadvantages of COI and mt 16S rDNA as barcodes for Zoantharia, and recommend that either one or both of these markers be considered for zoanthid identification in the future.

  2. Scavenging Rate Ecoassay: A Potential Indicator of Estuary Condition

    PubMed Central

    Porter, Augustine G.; Scanes, Peter R.

    2015-01-01

    Monitoring of estuary condition is essential due to the highly productive and often intensely impacted nature of these ecosystems. Assessment of the physico-chemical condition of estuaries is expensive and difficult due to naturally fluctuating water quality and biota. Assessing the vigour of ecosystem processes is an alternative method with potential to overcome much of the variability associated with physico-chemical measures. Indicators of estuary condition should have small spatial and temporal variability, have a predictable response to perturbation and be ecologically relevant. Here, we present tests of the first criterion, the spatio-temporal variability of a potential ecoassay measuring the rate of scavenging in estuaries. We hypothesised that the proposed scavenging ecoassay would not vary significantly among A) sites in an estuary, B) trips separated by weeks, or C) days in a trip. Because not all habitats are present in all estuaries, this test was undertaken in two habitats. When conducted over bare substrate there were occasional significant differences, but no discernible patterns, within levels of the experiment. When conducted over vegetated substrate, days within a trip did not vary significantly, but later trips experienced greater scavenging. This scavenging ecoassay shows potential as a tool for assessing the condition of estuarine ecosystems, and further exploration of this protocol is warranted by implementation in estuaries across a gradient of anthropogenic stress. PMID:26024225

  3. Barium as a potential indicator of phosphorus in agricultural runoff.

    PubMed

    Ahlgren, Joakim; Djodjic, Faruk; Wallin, Mats

    2012-01-01

    In many catchments, anthropogenic input of contaminants, and in particular phosphorus (P), into surface water is a mixture of agricultural and sewage runoff. Knowledge about the relative contribution from each of these sources is vital for mitigation of major environmental problems such as eutrophication. In this study, we investigated whether the distribution of trace elements in surface waters can be used to trace the contamination source. Water from three groups of streams was investigated: streams influenced only by agricultural runoff, streams influenced mainly by sewage runoff, and reference streams. Samples were collected at different flow regimes and times of year and analyzed for 62 elements using ICP-MS. Our results show that there are significant differences between the anthropogenic sources affecting the streams in terms of total element composition and individual elements, indicating that the method has the potential to trace anthropogenic impact on surface waters. The elements that show significant differences between sources are strontium (p < 0.001), calcium (p < 0.004), potassium (p < 0.001), magnesium (p < 0.001), boron (p < 0.001), rhodium (p = 0.001), and barium (p < 0.001). According to this study, barium shows the greatest potential as a tracer for an individual source of anthropogenic input to surface waters. We observed a strong relationship between barium and total P in the investigated samples (R(2) = 0.78), which could potentially be used to apportion anthropogenic sources of P and thereby facilitate targeting of mitigation practices.

  4. Scavenging rate ecoassay: a potential indicator of estuary condition.

    PubMed

    Porter, Augustine G; Scanes, Peter R

    2015-01-01

    Monitoring of estuary condition is essential due to the highly productive and often intensely impacted nature of these ecosystems. Assessment of the physico-chemical condition of estuaries is expensive and difficult due to naturally fluctuating water quality and biota. Assessing the vigour of ecosystem processes is an alternative method with potential to overcome much of the variability associated with physico-chemical measures. Indicators of estuary condition should have small spatial and temporal variability, have a predictable response to perturbation and be ecologically relevant. Here, we present tests of the first criterion, the spatio-temporal variability of a potential ecoassay measuring the rate of scavenging in estuaries. We hypothesised that the proposed scavenging ecoassay would not vary significantly among A) sites in an estuary, B) trips separated by weeks, or C) days in a trip. Because not all habitats are present in all estuaries, this test was undertaken in two habitats. When conducted over bare substrate there were occasional significant differences, but no discernible patterns, within levels of the experiment. When conducted over vegetated substrate, days within a trip did not vary significantly, but later trips experienced greater scavenging. This scavenging ecoassay shows potential as a tool for assessing the condition of estuarine ecosystems, and further exploration of this protocol is warranted by implementation in estuaries across a gradient of anthropogenic stress.

  5. Potential Metabolic Biomarkers to Identify Interstitial Lung Abnormalities

    PubMed Central

    Tan, Yong; Jia, Dongmei; Lin, Zhang; Guo, Baosheng; He, Bing; Lu, Cheng; Xiao, Cheng; Liu, Zhongdi; Zhao, Ning; Bian, Zhaoxiang; Zhang, Ge; Zhang, Weidong; Liu, Xinru; Lu, Aiping

    2016-01-01

    Determining sensitive biomarkers in the peripheral blood to identify interstitial lung abnormalities (ILAs) is essential for the simple early diagnosis of ILAs. This study aimed to determine serum metabolic biomarkers of ILAs and the corresponding pathogenesis. Three groups of subjects undergoing health screening, including healthy subjects, subjects with ILAs, and subjects who were healthy initially and with ILAs one year later (Healthy→ILAs), were recruited for this study. The metabolic profiles of all of the subjects’ serum were analyzed by liquid chromatography quadruple time-of-flight mass spectrometry. The metabolic characteristics of the ILAs subjects were discovered, and the corresponding biomarkers were predicted. The metabolomic data from the Healthy→ILAs subjects were collected for further verification. The results indicated that five serum metabolite alterations (up-regulated phosphatidylcholine, phosphatidic acid, betaine aldehyde and phosphatidylethanolamine, as well as down-regulated 1-acylglycerophosphocholine) were sensitive and reliable biomarkers for identifying ILAs. Perturbation of the corresponding biological pathways (RhoA signaling, mTOR/P70S6K signaling and phospholipase C signaling) might be at least partially responsible for the pathogenesis of ILAs. This study may provide a good template for determining the early diagnostic markers of subclinical disease status and for obtaining a better understanding of their pathogenesis. PMID:27438829

  6. Redox potential: An indicator of site productivity in forest management

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sajedi, Toktam; Prescott, Cindy; Lavkulich, Les

    2010-05-01

    Redox potential (Eh) is an integrated soil measurement that reflects several environmental conditions in the soil associated with aeration, moisture and carbon (organic matter) dynamics. Its measurement can be related to water table fluctuations, precipitation and landscape gradients, organic matter decomposition rates, nutrient dynamics, biological diversity and plant species distribution. Redox is an excellent indicator of soil biological processes, as it is largely a reflection of microbial activities which to a large extent govern carbon dynamics and nutrient cycling. Redox thus serves as an ecological indicator of site productivity at the ecosystem scale and may be used for management purposes as its magnitude can be altered by activities such as harvesting and drainage. A threshold value of 300 mv has been documented as the critical value below which anaerobic conditions in the soil develop. However, redox measurements and its impacts on ecosystem processes such as nutrient cycling and productivity, especially in forest ecosystems, have not received the attention that this "master" variable deserves, On northern Vancouver Island, Canada, regenerating stands of western redcedar-western hemlock (CH) sites exhibit symptoms of nutrient deficiencies and slow growth, but this phenomenon does not occur on adjacent western hemlock- amabalis fir (HA) sites. We tested the hypothesis that differences in nutrient supply and distribution of plant species was caused by differences in moisture regime and redox potential. Redox potential, pH, soil aeration depth (steel rods), organic matter thickness, bulk density, soil carbon store, plant species distribution and richness were measured at five old-growth and five 10-year-old cutover blocks. Results of investigations confirmed that CH forests were wetter, had redox values lower than the critical 300mv and a shallower aerated zone, compared with adjacent regenerating HA sites. Fifty percent of the CH plots had redox values

  7. Biologically controlled minerals as potential indicators of life

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Schwartz, D. E.; Mancinelli, R. L.; Kaneshiro, E.

    1991-01-01

    Minerals can be produced and deposited either by abiotic or biologic means. Regardless of their origin, mineral crystals reflect the environment conditions (e.g., temperature, pressure, chemical composition, and redox potential) present during crystal formation. Biologically-produced mineral crystals are grown or reworked under the control of their host organism and reflect an environment different from the abiotic environment. In addition, minerals of either biologic or abiotic origin have great longevities. For these reasons, biologically produced minerals have been proposed as biomarkers. Biomarkers are key morphological, chemical, and isotopic signatures of living systems that can be used to determine if life processes have occurred. Studies of biologically controlled minerals produced by the protist, Paramecium tetraurelia, were initiated since techniques have already been developed to culture them and isolate their crystalline material, and methods are already in place to analyze this material. Two direct crystalline phases were identified. One phase, whose chemical composition is high in Mg, was identified as struvite. The second phase, whose chemical composition is high in Ca, has not been previously found occurring naturally and may be considered a newly discovered material. Analyses are underway to determine the characteristics of these minerals in order to compare them with characteristics of these minerals in order to compare them with characteristics of minerals formed abiotically, but with the same chemical composition.

  8. The value of anthropometric indices for identifying women with features of metabolic syndrome

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    BMI is a widely used anthropometric measure for identifying CVD and metabolic syndrome (MetS) risk. Two new anthropometric indices are A Body Shape Index (ABSI) and Body Roundness Index (BRI) that may provide better correlations to features of MetS. Methods: Subject data were obtained from 91 over...

  9. Identifying Early Warning Indicators in Three Ohio School Districts. REL 2016-118

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Stuit, David; O'Cummings, Mindee; Norbury, Heather; Heppen, Jessica; Dhillon, Sonica; Lindsay, Jim; Zhu, Bo

    2016-01-01

    In partnership with the Midwest Dropout Prevention Research Alliance the study team used student-level data and a five-step process to identify the most accurate indicators of students' failure to graduate from high school on time. Student-level data came from attendance records, transcripts, and discipline records of grade 8 and 9 students in…

  10. A Method to Identify Estuarine Macroinvertebrate Pollution Indicator Species in the Virginian Biogeogarphic Province

    EPA Science Inventory

    Macroinvertebrates are commonly used as biomonitors to detect pollution impacts in estuaries. The goal of this research was to identify estuarine benthic invertebrates that could be used as indicator species to detect presence or absence of pollution in the Virginian Biogeograph...

  11. Potential theory, path integrals and the Laplacian of the indicator

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lange, Rutger-Jan

    2012-11-01

    This paper links the field of potential theory — i.e. the Dirichlet and Neumann problems for the heat and Laplace equation — to that of the Feynman path integral, by postulating the following seemingly ill-defined potential: V(x):=∓ {{σ^2}}/2nabla_x^2{1_{{xin D}}} where the volatility is the reciprocal of the mass (i.e. m = 1/ σ 2) and ħ = 1. The Laplacian of the indicator can be interpreted using the theory of distributions: it is the d-dimensional analogue of the Dirac δ'-function, which can formally be defined as partial_x^2{1_{x>0 }} . We show, first, that the path integral's perturbation series (or Born series) matches the classical single and double boundary layer series of potential theory, thereby connecting two hitherto unrelated fields. Second, we show that the perturbation series is valid for all domains D that allow Green's theorem (i.e. with a finite number of corners, edges and cusps), thereby expanding the classical applicability of boundary layers. Third, we show that the minus (plus) in the potential holds for the Dirichlet (Neumann) boundary condition; showing for the first time a particularly close connection between these two classical problems. Fourth, we demonstrate that the perturbation series of the path integral converges as follows:

    mode of convergence absorbed propagator reflected propagator convex domain alternating monotone
  12. Comparing the Ability of Anthropometric Indicators in Identifying Metabolic Syndrome in HIV Patients

    PubMed Central

    Beraldo, Rebeca Antunes; Meliscki, Gabriela Cristina; Silva, Bruna Ramos; Navarro, Anderson Marliere; Bollela, Valdes Roberto; Schmidt, André; Foss-Freitas, Maria Cristina

    2016-01-01

    Background Highly active antiretroviral therapy (HAART) can cause side effects in HIV patients, as the metabolic syndrome. Early identification of risk for development of cardiovascular diseases using available reliable and practical methods is fundamental. On this basis, the aim of this study was to compare the effectiveness of anthropometric indicators to identify metabolic syndrome in HIV patients on HAART. Methods It is a cross-sectional study. A number of 280 stable HIV patients were studied. It measured weight, height, waist circumference (WC), hip circumference (HP), thigh circumference (TC) and calculated body mass index (BMI), body adiposity index (BAI), waist to hip ratio (WHR) and waist to thigh ratio (WTR). There was also a performance of biochemical tests of lipid profile and fasting glucose. Systemic blood pressure was measured. The criteria proposed by the National Cholesterol Education Program III (NCEP-ATP III) to metabolic syndrome classification was used. Individuals were divided in groups with or without metabolic alterations and their anthropometric indicators were compared. Receiver operating characteristic (ROC) curves were designed for each anthropometric indicator using the metabolic syndrome classification to identify sensitivity and specificity. Results WC was a good tool to identify each metabolic disorder separately: total cholesterol (only females, p<0.05), triglycerides (only males, p<0.001), HDL cholesterol (p<0.05), LDL cholesterol (p<005) and fasting glycemic (p<005). WC also showed the best performance to identify metabolic syndrome in both genders (areas under the curve (AUCs): 0.79 and 0.76 for male and female, respectively), while BAI proved to be an inadequate indicator (AUCs: 0.63 and 0.67 for males and females), respectively, in this population. Conclusions The central adiposity measure (WC) had the best performance to identify metabolic syndrome, and it is a convenient, cheap and reliable tool that can be used in clinical

  13. Kernel Density Surface Modelling as a Means to Identify Significant Concentrations of Vulnerable Marine Ecosystem Indicators

    PubMed Central

    Kenchington, Ellen; Murillo, Francisco Javier; Lirette, Camille; Sacau, Mar; Koen-Alonso, Mariano; Kenny, Andrew; Ollerhead, Neil; Wareham, Vonda; Beazley, Lindsay

    2014-01-01

    The United Nations General Assembly Resolution 61/105, concerning sustainable fisheries in the marine ecosystem, calls for the protection of vulnerable marine ecosystems (VME) from destructive fishing practices. Subsequently, the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) produced guidelines for identification of VME indicator species/taxa to assist in the implementation of the resolution, but recommended the development of case-specific operational definitions for their application. We applied kernel density estimation (KDE) to research vessel trawl survey data from inside the fishing footprint of the Northwest Atlantic Fisheries Organization (NAFO) Regulatory Area in the high seas of the northwest Atlantic to create biomass density surfaces for four VME indicator taxa: large-sized sponges, sea pens, small and large gorgonian corals. These VME indicator taxa were identified previously by NAFO using the fragility, life history characteristics and structural complexity criteria presented by FAO, along with an evaluation of their recovery trajectories. KDE, a non-parametric neighbour-based smoothing function, has been used previously in ecology to identify hotspots, that is, areas of relatively high biomass/abundance. We present a novel approach of examining relative changes in area under polygons created from encircling successive biomass categories on the KDE surface to identify “significant concentrations” of biomass, which we equate to VMEs. This allows identification of the VMEs from the broader distribution of the species in the study area. We provide independent assessments of the VMEs so identified using underwater images, benthic sampling with other gear types (dredges, cores), and/or published species distribution models of probability of occurrence, as available. For each VME indicator taxon we provide a brief review of their ecological function which will be important in future assessments of significant adverse impact on these habitats here and

  14. Kernel density surface modelling as a means to identify significant concentrations of vulnerable marine ecosystem indicators.

    PubMed

    Kenchington, Ellen; Murillo, Francisco Javier; Lirette, Camille; Sacau, Mar; Koen-Alonso, Mariano; Kenny, Andrew; Ollerhead, Neil; Wareham, Vonda; Beazley, Lindsay

    2014-01-01

    The United Nations General Assembly Resolution 61/105, concerning sustainable fisheries in the marine ecosystem, calls for the protection of vulnerable marine ecosystems (VME) from destructive fishing practices. Subsequently, the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) produced guidelines for identification of VME indicator species/taxa to assist in the implementation of the resolution, but recommended the development of case-specific operational definitions for their application. We applied kernel density estimation (KDE) to research vessel trawl survey data from inside the fishing footprint of the Northwest Atlantic Fisheries Organization (NAFO) Regulatory Area in the high seas of the northwest Atlantic to create biomass density surfaces for four VME indicator taxa: large-sized sponges, sea pens, small and large gorgonian corals. These VME indicator taxa were identified previously by NAFO using the fragility, life history characteristics and structural complexity criteria presented by FAO, along with an evaluation of their recovery trajectories. KDE, a non-parametric neighbour-based smoothing function, has been used previously in ecology to identify hotspots, that is, areas of relatively high biomass/abundance. We present a novel approach of examining relative changes in area under polygons created from encircling successive biomass categories on the KDE surface to identify "significant concentrations" of biomass, which we equate to VMEs. This allows identification of the VMEs from the broader distribution of the species in the study area. We provide independent assessments of the VMEs so identified using underwater images, benthic sampling with other gear types (dredges, cores), and/or published species distribution models of probability of occurrence, as available. For each VME indicator taxon we provide a brief review of their ecological function which will be important in future assessments of significant adverse impact on these habitats here and elsewhere.

  15. Protocol for a scoping review study to identify and classify patient-centred quality indicators

    PubMed Central

    Jolley, Rachel J; Lorenzetti, Diane L; Manalili, Kimberly; Lu, Mingshan; Santana, Maria J

    2017-01-01

    Introduction The concept of patient-centred care (PCC) is changing the way healthcare is understood, accepted and delivered. The Institute of Medicine has defined PCC as 1 of its 6 aims to improve healthcare quality. However, in Canada, there are currently no nationwide standards in place for measuring and evaluating healthcare from a patient-centred approach. In this paper, we outline our scoping review protocol to systematically review published and unpublished literature specific to patient-centred quality indicators that have been implemented and evaluated across various care settings. Methods and analysis Arksey and O'Malley's scoping review methodology framework will guide the conduct of this scoping review. We will search electronic databases (MEDLINE, EMBASE, the Cochrane Library, Cumulative Index to Nursing and Allied Health Literature (CINAHL), PsycINFO, Social Work Abstracts, Social Services Abstracts), grey literature sources and the reference lists of key studies to identify studies appropriate for inclusion. 2 reviewers will independently screen all abstracts and full-text studies for inclusion. We will include any study which focuses on quality indicators in the context of PCC. All bibliographic data, study characteristics and indicators will be collected and analysed using a tool developed through an iterative process by the research team. Indicators will be classified according to a predefined conceptual framework and categorised and described using qualitative content analysis. Ethics and dissemination The scoping review will synthesise patient-centred quality indicators and their characteristics as described in the literature. This review will be the first step to formally identify what quality indicators have been used to evaluate PCC across the healthcare continuum, and will be used to inform a stakeholder consensus process exploring the development of a generic set of patient-centred quality indicators applicable to multiple care settings. The

  16. Using Social Media Data to Identify Potential Candidates for Drug Repurposing: A Feasibility Study

    PubMed Central

    Liu, Hongfang; Nambisan, Priya

    2016-01-01

    Background Drug repurposing (defined as discovering new indications for existing drugs) could play a significant role in drug development, especially considering the declining success rates of developing novel drugs. Typically, new indications for existing medications are identified by accident. However, new technologies and a large number of available resources enable the development of systematic approaches to identify and validate drug-repurposing candidates. Patients today report their experiences with medications on social media and reveal side effects as well as beneficial effects of those medications. Objective Our aim was to assess the feasibility of using patient reviews from social media to identify potential candidates for drug repurposing. Methods We retrieved patient reviews of 180 medications from an online forum, WebMD. Using dictionary-based and machine learning approaches, we identified disease names in the reviews. Several publicly available resources were used to exclude comments containing known indications and adverse drug effects. After manually reviewing some of the remaining comments, we implemented a rule-based system to identify beneficial effects. Results The dictionary-based system and machine learning system identified 2178 and 6171 disease names respectively in 64,616 patient comments. We provided a list of 10 common patterns that patients used to report any beneficial effects or uses of medication. After manually reviewing the comments tagged by our rule-based system, we identified five potential drug repurposing candidates. Conclusions To our knowledge, this is the first study to consider using social media data to identify drug-repurposing candidates. We found that even a rule-based system, with a limited number of rules, could identify beneficial effect mentions in patient comments. Our preliminary study shows that social media has the potential to be used in drug repurposing. PMID:27311964

  17. National variety trials identify clones with high potential

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Quality potato varieties are the backbone of a strong potato industry. Variety trials have been used to identify promising new varieties for well over a century. Trials are repeated and information collected over many years in order to confidently identify lines that may be well suited for productio...

  18. Field potential soil variability index to identify precision agriculture opportunity

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Precision agriculture (PA) technologies used for identifying and managing within-field variability are not widely used despite decades of advancement. Technological innovations in agronomic tools, such as canopy reflectance or electrical conductivity sensors, have created opportunities to achieve a ...

  19. Have panoramic indices the power to identify women with low BMD at the axial skeleton?

    PubMed

    Damilakis, John; Vlasiadis, Konstantinos

    2011-01-01

    The purpose of this study was to investigate whether panoramic mandibular indices i.e. mandibular cortical width (MCW), alveolar bone resorption degree (M/M ratio) and panoramic mandibular index (PMI) can be used as pre-selection tests to identify women with low bone mineral density (BMD) at the axial skeleton. MCW, PMI and M/M ratio were measured on dental panoramic radiographs in a group of 151 postmenopausal women aged 38-80 years. BMD at the lumbar spine and hip was measured by dual energy X-ray absorptiometry. BMD values were categorized as normal, osteopenic or osteoporotic according to the WHO classification. ROC analysis was used to determine cut-off values for MCW. MCW performed better than PMI and M/M ratio in its power to differentiate women with osteopenia or osteoporosis from healthy subjects. Cut-off values for the MCW estimated to detect women with T-score < -1 and those with T-score ≤ -2.5 identified a total of 45% and 34% of subjects respectively. Sensitivity and specificity was found to be low ranging between 55 and 70 for both cut-off values. Panoramic indices appear to have limited power in their ability to identify women with low BMD at the axial skeleton.

  20. Potential indicators of final ecosystem services in wetlands

    EPA Science Inventory

    Numerous and inconsistent lists of wetland ecosystem services exist because services are identified using ambiguous definitions or categorization schemes based around divergent or ambiguous objectives. A consistent and scientific approach would provide clarity and provide greater...

    1. Potential Utility of Actuarial Methods for Identifying Specific Learning Disabilities

      ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

      Benson, Nicholas; Newman, Isadore

      2010-01-01

      This article describes how actuarial methods can supplant discrepancy models and augment problem solving and Response to Intervention (RTI) efforts by guiding the process of identifying specific learning disabilities (SLD). Actuarial methods use routinized selection and execution of formulas derived from empirically established relationships to…

    2. IDENTIFYING POTENTIAL SOURCES OF BACKGROUND CONTAMINATION IN RT-PCR

      EPA Science Inventory

      Extraction of nucleic acids from low biomass samples, such as drinking water, is particularly sensitive to potential background contamination because the contaminating material is minimally diluted by the sample. The presence of bacterial DNA in Taq DNA polymerase is wel...

    3. Scoping review of potential quality indicators for hip fracture patient care

      PubMed Central

      Pitzul, Kristen B; Munce, Sarah E P; Perrier, Laure; Beaupre, Lauren; Morin, Suzanne N; McGlasson, Rhona; Jaglal, Susan B

      2017-01-01

      Objective The purpose of this study is to identify existing or potential quality of care indicators (ie, current indicators as well as process and outcome measures) in the acute or postacute period, or across the continuum of care for older adults with hip fracture. Design Scoping review. Setting All care settings. Search strategy English peer-reviewed studies published from January 2000 to January 2016 were included. Literature search strategies were developed, and the search was peer-reviewed. Two reviewers independently piloted all forms, and all articles were screened in duplicate. Results The search yielded 2729 unique articles, of which 302 articles were included (11.1%). When indicators (eg, in-hospital mortality, acute care length of stay) and potential indicators (eg, comorbidities developed in hospital, walking ability) were grouped by the outcome or process construct they were trying to measure, the most common constructs were measures of mortality (outcome), length of stay (process) and time-sensitive measures (process). There was heterogeneity in definitions within constructs between studies. There was also a paucity of indicators and potential indicators in the postacute period. Conclusions To improve quality of care for patients with hip fracture and create a more efficient healthcare system, mechanisms for the measurement of quality of care across the entire continuum, not just during the acute period, are required. Future research should focus on decreasing the heterogeneity in definitions of quality indicators and the development and implementation of quality indicators for the postacute period. PMID:28325859

    4. Using Click Chemistry to Identify Potential Drug Targets in Plasmodium

      DTIC Science & Technology

      2016-06-01

      the Plasmodium mammalian cycle . Identifying parasite proteins that are required for liver infection can lead to novel drugs against malaria. For the...mammalian cycle . Inhibiting this step can block malaria at an early step. However, few anti-malarials target liver infection by sporozoites. Our goal is...methods to synthesize TSP and TSP derivatives, we demonstrated that we could append a propargyl group to the piperidine ring nitrogen and that this

    5. Gene expression profiling in bladder cancer identifies potential therapeutic targets

      PubMed Central

      Hussain, Syed A.; Palmer, Daniel H.; Syn, Wing-Kin; Sacco, Joseph J.; Greensmith, Richard M.D.; Elmetwali, Taha; Aachi, Vijay; Lloyd, Bryony H.; Jithesh, Puthen V.; Arrand, John; Barton, Darren; Ansari, Jawaher; Sibson, D. Ross; James, Nicholas D.

      2017-01-01

      Despite advances in management, bladder cancer remains a major cause of cancer related complications. Characterisation of gene expression patterns in bladder cancer allows the identification of pathways involved in its pathogenesis, and may stimulate the development of novel therapies targeting these pathways. Between 2004 and 2005, cystoscopic bladder biopsies were obtained from 19 patients and 11 controls. These were subjected to whole transcript-based microarray analysis. Unsupervised hierarchical clustering was used to identify samples with similar expression profiles. Hypergeometric analysis was used to identify canonical pathways and curated networks having statistically significant enrichment of differentially expressed genes. Osteopontin (OPN) expression was validated by immunohistochemistry. Hierarchical clustering defined signatures, which differentiated between cancer and healthy tissue, muscle-invasive or non-muscle invasive cancer and healthy tissue, grade 1 and grade 3. Pathways associated with cell cycle and proliferation were markedly upregulated in muscle-invasive and grade 3 cancers. Genes associated with the classical complement pathway were downregulated in non-muscle invasive cancer. Osteopontin was markedly overexpressed in invasive cancer compared to healthy tissue. The present study contributes to a growing body of work on gene expression signatures in bladder cancer. The data support an important role for osteopontin in bladder cancer, and identify several pathways worthy of further investigation. PMID:28259975

    6. MODELING POTENTIAL PATHOGEN INFECTED WATERS UTILIZING LANDSCAPE INDICES

      EPA Science Inventory

      The federal Clean Water Act (CWA) requires states, territories and tribal lands to assess their waters on a biennial schedule and identify, list and prioritize impaired waters not meeting water quality standards. Once a water body is listed, the state is required to develop Tota...

    7. PREDICT‐PD: An online approach to prospectively identify risk indicators of Parkinson's disease

      PubMed Central

      Noyce, Alastair J.; R'Bibo, Lea; Peress, Luisa; Bestwick, Jonathan P.; Adams‐Carr, Kerala L.; Mencacci, Niccolo E.; Hawkes, Christopher H.; Masters, Joseph M.; Wood, Nicholas; Hardy, John; Giovannoni, Gavin; Lees, Andrew J.

      2017-01-01

      Background A number of early features can precede the diagnosis of Parkinson's disease (PD). Objective To test an online, evidence‐based algorithm to identify risk indicators of PD in the UK population. Methods Participants aged 60 to 80 years without PD completed an online survey and keyboard‐tapping task annually over 3 years, and underwent smell tests and genotyping for glucocerebrosidase (GBA) and leucine‐rich repeat kinase 2 (LRRK2) mutations. Risk scores were calculated based on the results of a systematic review of risk factors and early features of PD, and individuals were grouped into higher (above 15th centile), medium, and lower risk groups (below 85th centile). Previously defined indicators of increased risk of PD (“intermediate markers”), including smell loss, rapid eye movement–sleep behavior disorder, and finger‐tapping speed, and incident PD were used as outcomes. The correlation of risk scores with intermediate markers and movement of individuals between risk groups was assessed each year and prospectively. Exploratory Cox regression analyses with incident PD as the dependent variable were performed. Results A total of 1323 participants were recruited at baseline and >79% completed assessments each year. Annual risk scores were correlated with intermediate markers of PD each year and baseline scores were correlated with intermediate markers during follow‐up (all P values < 0.001). Incident PD diagnoses during follow‐up were significantly associated with baseline risk score (hazard ratio = 4.39, P = .045). GBA variants or G2019S LRRK2 mutations were found in 47 participants, and the predictive power for incident PD was improved by the addition of genetic variants to risk scores. Conclusions The online PREDICT‐PD algorithm is a unique and simple method to identify indicators of PD risk. © 2017 The Authors. Movement Disorders published by Wiley Periodicals, Inc. on behalf of International Parkinson and Movement

    8. Using Click Chemistry to Identify Potential Drug Targets in Plasmodium

      DTIC Science & Technology

      2015-04-01

      Release; Distribution Unlimited 13. SUPPLEMENTARY NOTES 14. ABSTRACT Sporozo ite infection of the liver is the first obl igate step of the Plasmodium...goal is to find drugs that prevent or control liver infection. Development of such drugs will be faci l itated by identification of parasite proteins...required for l iver infection. These proteins are potential drug targets for development of therapies that restrict Plasmodium liver infection. The

    9. Geospatial analysis identifies critical mineral-resource potential in Alaska

      USGS Publications Warehouse

      Karl, Susan; Labay, Keith; Jacques, Katherine; Landowski, Claire

      2017-03-03

      Alaska consists of more than 663,000 square miles (1,717,000 square kilometers) of land—more than a sixth of the total area of the United States—and large tracts of it have not been systematically studied or sampled for mineral-resource potential. Many regions of the State are known to have significant mineral-resource potential, and there are currently six operating mines in the State along with numerous active mineral exploration projects. The U.S. Geological Survey and the Alaska Division of Geological & Geophysical Surveys have developed a new geospatial tool that integrates and analyzes publicly available databases of geologic information and estimates the mineral-resource potential for critical minerals, which was recently used to evaluate Alaska. The results of the analyses highlight areas that have known mineral deposits and also reveal areas that were not previously considered to be prospective for these deposit types. These results will inform land management decisions by Federal, State, and private landholders, and will also help guide future exploration activities and scientific investigations in Alaska.

    10. Renal denervation: potential indications and review of trial data.

      PubMed

      Raphael, Claire E

      2014-12-01

      Renal sympathetic denervation is a novel, endovascular treatment with potential utility in resistant hypertension. First pioneered in humans in 2010, conflicting data exist regarding the efficacy of this treatment. This article will review the evidence to date, the scientific rationale for sympathetic denervation as a treatment for hypertension and consider other possible conditions where the therapy may be of benefit.

    11. The Ghrelin Axis in Disease; Potential Therapeutic Indications

      PubMed Central

      Nass, Ralf; Gaylinn, Bruce D.; Thorner, Michael O.

      2011-01-01

      Ghrelin, the natural ligand for the growth hormone (GH)-secretagogue receptor (GHS-R), is produced predominantly in the stomach. It is present in the circulation in two major forms, an acylated and an unacylated form, both of which have reported activities. Some of the best understood main effects of acylated ghrelin administration include anorexic effects, increased appetite and the stimulation of GH secretion. Ghrelin also seems to plays a role in glucose homeostasis, lipid metabolism and immune function. Based on its orexigenic and metabolic effects, ghrelin and ghrelin mimetics have potential benefit in antagonizing protein breakdown and weight loss in catabolic conditions such as cancer cachexia, renal, cardiac and pulmonary disease, and age-related frailty. Ghrelin also has potentially useful positive effects on cardiac function and gastric motility. Ghrelin antagonists may be of benefit to increase insulin sensitivity and potentiate weight loss. The following chapter presents some background on ghrelin and ghrelin assays and discusses some of the potential therapeutic approaches for the use of ghrelin, ghrelin mimetic compounds and ghrelin antagonists in clinical disease. PMID:21356273

    12. Seagrass epiphytes: useful indicator, potential biological criterion, or forlorn hope?

      EPA Science Inventory

      Epiphytes on seagrasses have been studied for more than 50 years, and proposed as an indicator of anthropogenic nutrient enrichment for over 30 years. Epiphytes have been correlated with seagrass declines, causally related to nutrient additions in both field and mesocosm experim...

    13. AN INDICATOR OF POTENTIAL STREAM WOOD CONTRIBUTION FOR RIPARIAN FORESTS

      EPA Science Inventory

      In northwestern Oregon a key function of riparian forests is to provide wood to the stream network. This function is a prominent feature of Federal and State forest practices in the region. Thus, defining indicators which are associated with this function are important for desi...

    14. Identifying improvement potentials in cement production with life cycle assessment.

      PubMed

      Boesch, Michael Elias; Hellweg, Stefanie

      2010-12-01

      Cement production is an environmentally relevant process responsible for 5% of total anthropogenic carbon dioxide emissions and 7% of industrial fuel use. In this study, life cycle assessment is used to evaluate improvement potentials in the cement production process in Europe and the USA. With a current fuel substitution rate of 18% in Europe and 11% in the USA, both regions have a substantial potential to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and save virgin resources by further increasing the coprocessing of waste fuels. Upgrading production technology would be particularly effective in the USA where many kiln systems with very low energy efficiency are still in operation. Using best available technology and a thermal substitution rate of 50% for fuels, greenhouse gas emissions could be reduced by 9% for Europe and 18% for the USA per tonne of cement. Since clinker production is the dominant pollution producing step in cement production, the substitution of clinker with mineral components such as ground granulated blast furnace slag or fly ash is an efficient measure to reduce the environmental impact. Blended cements exhibit substantially lower environmental footprints than Portland cement, even if the substitutes feature lower grindability and require additional drying and large transport distances. The highest savings in CO(2) emissions and resource consumption are achieved with a combination of measures in clinker production and cement blending.

    15. Nationwide Benthic Macroinvertebrate Assemblage Multimetric Indices: Identifying Inconsistencies and Limitations in Reporting Stream Impairment Status, USA

      NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

      Lau, J. K.; Lauer, T. E.

      2015-07-01

      The objective of this study was to identify the current status of stream water-quality assessment and reporting methods for four states in the Ohio River basin (Indiana, Ohio, Tennessee, and Virginia), as required by the 305(b) section of the United States (US) Clean Water Act. Specifically, we clarified the discrepancies that exist among stream-impairment status classified by benthic macroinvertebrate multimetric indices (MMIs) and depicted using Geographic Information Systems shapefiles. In addition, we provided guidance in solving some of the comparability problems that arise when developing state-specific MMIs and depicting stream-impairment status using Geographic Information Systems technology. The MMI variation among states and differences in shapefile formats resulted in a nationwide dataset, which cannot be directly compared. Incorporating the changes suggested in this study allow for a uniform assessment and reporting method nationwide. Successful implementation of these changes would strengthen the US Environmental Protection Agency efforts to identify impaired streams and sources of those impairments without the limitations of state-by-state .developed assessment methods.

    16. Nationwide benthic macroinvertebrate assemblage multimetric indices: identifying inconsistencies and limitations in reporting stream impairment status, USA.

      PubMed

      Lau, J K; Lauer, T E

      2015-07-01

      The objective of this study was to identify the current status of stream water-quality assessment and reporting methods for four states in the Ohio River basin (Indiana, Ohio, Tennessee, and Virginia), as required by the 305(b) section of the United States (US) Clean Water Act. Specifically, we clarified the discrepancies that exist among stream-impairment status classified by benthic macroinvertebrate multimetric indices (MMIs) and depicted using Geographic Information Systems shapefiles. In addition, we provided guidance in solving some of the comparability problems that arise when developing state-specific MMIs and depicting stream-impairment status using Geographic Information Systems technology. The MMI variation among states and differences in shapefile formats resulted in a nationwide dataset, which cannot be directly compared. Incorporating the changes suggested in this study allow for a uniform assessment and reporting method nationwide. Successful implementation of these changes would strengthen the US Environmental Protection Agency efforts to identify impaired streams and sources of those impairments without the limitations of state-by-state .developed assessment methods.

    17. Coupling groundwater modeling and biological indicators for identifying river/aquifer exchanges.

      PubMed

      Graillot, Didier; Paran, Frédéric; Bornette, Gudrun; Marmonier, Pierre; Piscart, Christophe; Cadilhac, Laurent

      2014-01-01

      Future climate changes and the resulting modifications in anthropogenic activities will alter the interactions between rivers and groundwater. The quantification of these hydraulic interactions is absolutely necessary for achieving sustainable water use and requires accurate analytical methodologies. This report proposes an interdisciplinary approach to the quantitative and qualitative characterization of hydraulic interactions between rivers and shallow aquifers, wherein it outlines the advantages of coupling groundwater modeling with biological markers. As a first step, we built independent diagnostic maps of hydrological exchanges at the sector scale on the basis of hydrogeological modeling and biological indicators. In a second step, these maps were compared to provide a quantitative and qualitative understanding of exchanges between groundwater and surface water. This comparison significantly improved the calibration of groundwater models through a better assessment of boundary zones. Our approach enabled us to identify the conditions under which it could be possible to use biological indicators instead of a large set of piezometric measures. The integration of such combined tools in a future decision support system will assist governmental authorities in proposing appropriate long-term water policies for the preservation of groundwater resources, such as for supplying potable water and/or mitigating pollution risks.

    18. IDENTIFYING POTENTIAL MARKERS OF THE SUN'S GIANT CONVECTIVE SCALE

      SciTech Connect

      McIntosh, Scott W.; Wang, Xin; Leamon, Robert J.; Scherrer, Philip H.

      2014-04-01

      Line-of-sight magnetograms from the Helioseismic and Magnetic Imager (HMI) of the Solar Dynamics Observatory (SDO) are analyzed using a diagnostic known as the magnetic range of influence (MRoI). The MRoI is a measure of the length over which a photospheric magnetogram is balanced and so its application gives the user a sense of the connective length scales in the outer solar atmosphere. The MRoI maps and histograms inferred from the SDO/HMI magnetograms primarily exhibit four scales: a scale of a few megameters that can be associated with granulation, a scale of a few tens of megameters that can be associated with super-granulation, a scale of many hundreds to thousands of megameters that can be associated with coronal holes and active regions, and a hitherto unnoticed scale that ranges from 100 to 250 Mm. We infer that this final scale is an imprint of the (rotationally driven) giant convective scale on photospheric magnetism. This scale appears in MRoI maps as well-defined, spatially distributed concentrations that we have dubbed ''g-nodes''. Furthermore, using coronal observations from the Atmospheric Imaging Assembly on SDO, we see that the vicinity of these g-nodes appears to be a preferred location for the formation of extreme-ultraviolet (and likely X-Ray) brightpoints. These observations and straightforward diagnostics offer the potential of a near real-time mapping of the Sun's largest convective scale, a scale that possibly reaches to the very bottom of the convective zone.

    19. Sublingual Delivery of Frovatriptan: An Indication of Potential Alternative Route

      PubMed Central

      Verma, Surajpal; Prasad, Shyam Baboo

      2014-01-01

      Frovatriptan, a 5-HT1B and 5-HT1D receptor agonist, is used for the treatment of acute migraine attack. This molecule is classified into second line therapy because of its slow onset of action (peak response obtained after 4 hours of administration) and low bioavailability (25%). Moreover, its therapy is the most costly among all triptans. Attempt has been made in present work to suggest a way out to fasten its onset of action and to enhance its bioavailability. Prepared tablets were evaluated by physicochemical tests, in vitro permeation studies, ex vivo permeation studies, and histopathological studies. Suitable mathematical calculations were performed to calculate the minimum amount of bioavailability that could be enhanced. Tablets containing chitosan (5% w/w) were found to give optimum results. Prepared tablets can double the bioavailability of frovatriptan and can initiate its response within 10 minutes of its administration. Suggestive alternative has the potential to increase the efficacy of frovatriptan for treating acute migraine attack. PMID:27433492

    20. Thrombopoietin: a potential diagnostic indicator of immune thrombocytopenia in pregnancy

      PubMed Central

      Zhang, Xu; Zhao, Yajing; Li, Xiaoqing; Han, Panpan; Jing, Fangmiao; Kong, Zhangyuan; Zhou, Hai; Qiu, Jihua; Li, Lizhen; Peng, Jun; Hou, Ming

      2016-01-01

      To evaluate whether the serum thrombopoietin levels in pregnancy-associated immune thrombocytopenia (ITP) differ from those in gestational thrombocytopenia, and reveal the possibility of thrombopoietin serving as a marker for differential diagnosis. Serum thrombopoietin concentration was determined in ITP in pregnancy (n = 35), gestational thrombocytopenia (n = 31), healthy pregnancy (n = 32), age-matched nonpregnant ITP (n = 32) and nonpregnant healthy controls (n = 35) by ELISA. The serum thrombopoietin level of ITP in pregnancy (1283 ± 646 pg/mL) was significantly higher than gestational thrombocytopenia (187 ± 64 pg/mL) (P < 0.01), although the platelet counts of these two disorders may overlap. Twenty-nine of 35 patients with ITP in pregnancy had thrombopoietin values >500 pg/mL, whereas none of the gestational thrombocytopenia patients' thrombopoietin levels exceeded 500 pg/mL. In addition, ITP in pregnancy presented a markedly higher thrombopoietin level than nonpregnant ITP (88 ± 41 pg/mL) (P < 0.01), indicating that the pathogenesis of pregnant and nonpregnant ITP was different. Our findings suggest that measurement of serum thrombopoietin concentration provides valuable diagnostic information for differentiating ITP in pregnancy from gestational thrombocytopenia. Thrombopoietin represents a reliable marker for ITP in pregnancy. PMID:26840092

    1. Thrombopoietin: a potential diagnostic indicator of immune thrombocytopenia in pregnancy.

      PubMed

      Zhang, Xu; Zhao, Yajing; Li, Xiaoqing; Han, Panpan; Jing, Fangmiao; Kong, Zhangyuan; Zhou, Hai; Qiu, Jihua; Li, Lizhen; Peng, Jun; Hou, Ming

      2016-02-16

      To evaluate whether the serum thrombopoietin levels in pregnancy-associated immune thrombocytopenia (ITP) differ from those in gestational thrombocytopenia, and reveal the possibility of thrombopoietin serving as a marker for differential diagnosis. Serum thrombopoietin concentration was determined in ITP in pregnancy (n = 35), gestational thrombocytopenia (n = 31), healthy pregnancy (n = 32), age-matched nonpregnant ITP (n = 32) and nonpregnant healthy controls (n = 35) by ELISA. The serum thrombopoietin level of ITP in pregnancy (1283 ± 646 pg/mL) was significantly higher than gestational thrombocytopenia (187 ± 64 pg/mL) (P < 0.01), although the platelet counts of these two disorders may overlap. Twenty-nine of 35 patients with ITP in pregnancy had thrombopoietin values >500 pg/mL, whereas none of the gestational thrombocytopenia patients' thrombopoietin levels exceeded 500 pg/mL. In addition, ITP in pregnancy presented a markedly higher thrombopoietin level than nonpregnant ITP (88 ± 41 pg/mL) (P < 0.01), indicating that the pathogenesis of pregnant and nonpregnant ITP was different. Our findings suggest that measurement of serum thrombopoietin concentration provides valuable diagnostic information for differentiating ITP in pregnancy from gestational thrombocytopenia. Thrombopoietin represents a reliable marker for ITP in pregnancy.

    2. Geochemical Indicators and Diatoms Identify the Inundation Limit of the 2010 Maule Tsunami

      NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

      Chague-Goff, C.; Goff, J. R.; Wong, H. K.; Cisternas, M.

      2013-05-01

      It has long been known that tsunamis inundate further than the limit of the sand deposit they leave behind, and that relying on the extent of the sandy sedimentary evidence is likely to result in an under-estimation of event magnitude and risk. However, the question remains about how to identify the real limit of tsunami inundation, particularly several months or more after the event. Here we report on a study carried out at a site on the Pacific coast of Chile south of Constitución in August 2010, nearly 6 months after the Mw 8.8 Maule tsunami. Eight pits were dug along a 480 m long shore-perpendicular transect, incorporating the area covered by tsunami sediment, a zone covered by a discontinuous and decomposing debris scatter up to the point of maximum inundation, and an area further landward from this point. The tsunami sand deposit extended from ~160 to 260 m inland and ranged in thickness from 22 to less than 1 cm at the limit of sediment deposition. It consisted of dark, generally well-sorted, coarse to medium sand. Logs, pumice and various organic debris were found up to a limit of tsunami inundation (380 m inland - confirmed by a local eye witness). New grass growth also covered the tsunami deposit and the field further inland. While the chemical composition of the tsunami deposit differed to that of the underlying soil, indicators of saltwater inundation were low in the sandy units, reflecting downward leaching and dilution by rainfall in the porous material in the 6 months since the tsunami. Concentrations of saltwater indicators (e.g. chloride, sulphate, bromide) were however elevated in the area covered by scattered debris up to the limit of tsunami inundation, suggesting preferential retention in organic-rich material. Marine and brackish-marine diatoms were found both in the sandy units and beyond, at the surface of the grass field, and occurred in higher concentrations than in the underlying soil. Both diatom assemblages and geochemical marine

    3. Fragmentation patterns of evergreen oak woodlands in Southwestern Iberia: identifying key spatial indicators.

      PubMed

      Costa, Augusta; Madeira, Manuel; Lima Santos, José; Plieninger, Tobias; Seixas, Júlia

      2014-01-15

      Mediterranean evergreen oak woodlands (composed of Quercus suber L. and Quercus rotundifolia Lam.) are becoming increasingly fragmented in the human-modified landscapes of Southwestern Portugal and Spain. Previous studies have largely neglected to assess the spatial changes of oak woodlands in relation to their surrounding landscape matrix, and to characterize and quantify woodland boundaries and edges. The present study aims to fill this gap by analyzing fragmentation patterns of oak woodlands over a 50-year period (1958-2007) in three landscapes. Using archived aerial imagery from 1958, 1995 and 2007, for two consecutive periods (1958-1995 and 1995-2007), we calculated a set of landscape metrics to compare woodland fragmentation over time. Our results indicated a continuous woodland fragmentation characterized by their edge dynamics. From 1958 to 2007, the replacement of open farmland by shrubland and by new afforestation areas in the oak woodland landscape surrounding matrix, led to the highest values for edge contrast length trends of 5.0 and 12.3, respectively. Linear discriminant analysis was performed to delineate fragmented woodland structures and identify metric variables that characterize woodland spatial configuration. The edge contrast length with open farmland showed a strong correlation with F1 (correlations ranging between 0.55 and 0.98) and may be used as a proxy for oak woodland mixedness in landscape matrix. The edge dynamics of oak woodlands may result in different patterns of oak recruitment and therefore, its study may be helpful in highlighting future baselines for the sustainable management of oak woodlands.

    4. Fractionation of polyphenol-enriched apple juice extracts to identify constituents with cancer chemopreventive potential.

      PubMed

      Zessner, Henriette; Pan, Lydia; Will, Frank; Klimo, Karin; Knauft, Jutta; Niewöhner, Regina; Hümmer, Wolfgang; Owen, Robert; Richling, Elke; Frank, Norbert; Schreier, Peter; Becker, Hans; Gerhauser, Clarissa

      2008-06-01

      Apples and apple juices are widely consumed and rich sources of phytochemicals. The aim of the present study was to determine which apple constituents contribute to potential chemopreventive activities, using a bioactivity-directed approach. A polyphenol-enriched apple juice extract was fractionated by various techniques. Extract and fractions were tested in a series of test systems indicative of cancer preventive potential. These test systems measured antioxidant effects, modulation of carcinogen metabolism, anti-inflammatory and antihormonal activities, and antiproliferative potential. Regression analyses indicated that 1,1-diphenyl-2-picrylhydrazyl (DPPH) radical scavenging potential correlated with the sum of low molecular weight (LMW) antioxidants (including chlorogenic acid, flavan-3-ols, and flavonols) and procyanidins, whereas peroxyl radicals were more effectively scavenged by LMW compounds than by procyanidins. Quercetin aglycone was identified as a potent Cyp1A inhibitor, whereas phloretin and (-)-epicatechin were the most potent cyclooxygenase 1 (Cox-1) inhibitors. Aromatase and Cyp1A inhibitory potential and cytotoxicity toward HCT116 colon cancer cells increased with increasing content in procyanidins. Overall, apple juice constituents belonging to different structural classes have distinct profiles of biological activity in these in vitro test systems. Since carcinogenesis is a complex process, combination of compounds with complementary activities may lead to enhanced preventive effects.

    5. Self-Selection Patterns of College Roommates as Identified by the Myers-Briggs Type Indicator.

      ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

      Anchors, W. Scott; Hale, John, Jr.

      1985-01-01

      Investigated patterns and processes by which students (N=422) made unassisted roommate pairings within residence halls using the Myers-Briggs Type Indicator. Results indicated introverts, intuitives, feelers, and perceivers each tended to self-select. (BL)

    6. Using Indices of Fidelity to Intervention Core Components to Identify Program Active Ingredients

      ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

      Abry, Tashia; Hulleman, Chris S.; Rimm-Kaufman, Sara E.

      2015-01-01

      Identifying the active ingredients of an intervention--intervention-specific components serving as key levers of change--is crucial for unpacking the intervention black box. Measures of intervention fidelity can be used to identify specific active ingredients, yet such applications are rare. We illustrate how fidelity measures can be used to…

    7. Characterization of potential mineralization in Afghanistan: four permissive areas identified using imaging spectroscopy data

      USGS Publications Warehouse

      King, Trude V.V.; Berger, Byron R.; Johnson, Michaela R.

      2014-01-01

      As part of the U.S. Geological Survey and Department of Defense Task Force for Business and Stability Operations natural resources revitalization activities in Afghanistan, four permissive areas for mineralization, Bamyan 1, Farah 1, Ghazni 1, and Ghazni 2, have been identified using imaging spectroscopy data. To support economic development, the areas of potential mineralization were selected on the occurrence of selected mineral assemblages mapped using the HyMap™ data (kaolinite, jarosite, hydrated silica, chlorite, epidote, iron-bearing carbonate, buddingtonite, dickite, and alunite) that may be indicative of past mineralization processes in areas with limited or no previous mineral resource studies. Approximately 30 sites were initially determined to be candidates for areas of potential mineralization. Additional criteria and material used to refine the selection and prioritization process included existing geologic maps, Landsat Thematic Mapper data, and published literature. The HyMapTM data were interpreted in the context of the regional geologic and tectonic setting and used the presence of alteration mineral assemblages to identify areas with the potential for undiscovered mineral resources. Further field-sampling, mapping, and supporting geochemical analyses are necessary to fully substantiate and verify the specific deposit types in the four areas of potential mineralization.

    8. Research Questions to Identify Ecological Indicators Most Useful for Linking Ecosystems and Human Wellbeing

      EPA Science Inventory

      Background/Question/Methods While the desirability of ecological indicators that foster social science interpretation and use as well as public comprehension is well established, guidelines for developing indicators that meet these needs are not as well developed. In the past f...

    9. Establishing and testing the "reuse potential" indicator for managing wastes as resources.

      PubMed

      Park, Joo Young; Chertow, Marian R

      2014-05-01

      This study advances contemporary ideas promoting the importance of managing wastes as resources such as closed-loop or circular material economies, and sustainable materials management by reinforcing the notion of a resource-based paradigm rather than a waste-based one. It features the creation of a quantitative tool, the "reuse potential indicator" to specify how "resource-like" versus how "waste-like" specific materials are on a continuum. Even with increasing attention to waste reuse and resource conservation, constant changes in product composition and complexity have left material managers without adequate guidance to make decisions about what is technically feasible to recover from the discard stream even before markets can be considered. The reuse potential indicator is developed to aid management decision-making about waste based not on perception but more objectively on the technical ability of the materials to be reused in commerce. This new indicator is based on the extent of technological innovation and commercial application of actual reuse approaches identified and cataloged. Coal combustion by-products (CCBs) provide the test case for calculating the reuse potential indicator. While CCBs are often perceived as wastes and then isolated in landfills or surface impoundments, there is also a century-long history in the industry of developing technologies to reuse CCBs. The recent statistics show that most CCBs generated in Europe and Japan are reused (90-95%), but only 40-45% of CCBs are used in the United States. According to the reuse potential calculation, however, CCBs in the United States have high technical reusability. Of the four CCBs examined under three different regulatory schemes, reuse potential for boiler slag and flue-gas desulfurization gypsum maintains a value greater than 0.8 on a 0-1 scale, indicating they are at least 80% resource-like. Under current regulation in the United States, both fly ash and bottom ash are 80-90% resource

    10. Gangs in Our Schools: Identifying Gang Indicators in Our School Population

      ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

      Struyk, Ruth

      2006-01-01

      Although teachers used to teach in the communities where they resided, they now commute to schools in other districts. For teachers who teach in districts that are culturally or ethnically different than their own, it may be a new experience of which to become aware or identify issues such as dealing with gang behavior. For other teachers, there…

    11. Essential Indicators Identifying Chronic Inorganic Mercury Intoxication: Pooled Analysis across Multiple Cross-Sectional Studies

      PubMed Central

      Doering, Stefan

      2016-01-01

      Background The continuous exposure to inorganic mercury vapour in artisanal small-scale gold mining (ASGM) areas leads to chronic health problems. It is therefore essential to have a quick, but reliable risk assessing tool to diagnose chronic inorganic mercury intoxication. This study re-evaluates the state-of-the-art toolkit to diagnose chronic inorganic mercury intoxication by analysing data from multiple pooled cross-sectional studies. The primary research question aims to reduce the currently used set of indicators without affecting essentially the capability to diagnose chronic inorganic mercury intoxication. In addition, a sensitivity analysis is performed on established biomonitoring exposure limits for mercury in blood, hair, urine and urine adjusted by creatinine, where the biomonitoring exposure limits are compared to thresholds most associated with chronic inorganic mercury intoxication in artisanal small-scale gold mining. Methods Health data from miners and community members in Indonesia, Tanzania and Zimbabwe were obtained as part of the Global Mercury Project and pooled into one dataset together with their biomarkers mercury in urine, blood and hair. The individual prognostic impact of the indicators on the diagnosis of mercury intoxication is quantified using logistic regression models. The selection is performed by a stepwise forward/backward selection. Different models are compared based on the Bayesian information criterion (BIC) and Cohen`s kappa is used to evaluate the level of agreement between the diagnosis of mercury intoxication based on the currently used set of indicators and the result based on our reduced set of indicators. The sensitivity analysis of biomarker exposure limits of mercury is based on a sequence of chi square tests. Results The variable selection in logistic regression reduced the number of medical indicators from thirteen to ten in addition to the biomarkers. The estimated level of agreement using ten of thirteen medical

    12. Using patient safety indicators to estimate the impact of potential adverse events on outcomes.

      PubMed

      Rivard, Peter E; Luther, Stephen L; Christiansen, Cindy L; Shibei Zhao; Loveland, Susan; Elixhauser, Anne; Romano, Patrick S; Rosen, Amy K

      2008-02-01

      The authors estimated the impact of potentially preventable patient safety events, identified by Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ) Patient Safety Indicators (PSIs), on patient outcomes: mortality, length of stay (LOS), and cost. The PSIs were applied to all acute inpatient hospitalizations at Veterans Health Administration (VA) facilities in fiscal 2001. Two methods-regression analysis and multivariable case matching- were used independently to control for patient and facility characteristics while predicting the effect of the PSI on each outcome. The authors found statistically significant (p < .0001) excess mortality, LOS, and cost in all groups with PSIs. The magnitude of the excess varied considerably across the PSIs. These VA findings are similar to those from a previously published study of nonfederal hospitals, despite differences between VA and non-VA systems. This study contributes to the literature measuring outcomes of medical errors and provides evidence that AHRQ PSIs may be useful indicators for comparison across delivery systems.

    13. Identifying Important Career Indicators of Undergraduate Geoscience Students Upon Completion of Their Degree

      NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

      Wilson, C. E.; Keane, C. M.; Houlton, H. R.

      2012-12-01

      The American Geosciences Institute (AGI) decided to create the National Geoscience Student Exit Survey in order to identify the initial pathways into the workforce for these graduating students, as well as assess their preparedness for entering the workforce upon graduation. The creation of this survey stemmed from a combination of experiences with the AGI/AGU Survey of Doctorates and discussions at the following Science Education Research Center (SERC) workshops: "Developing Pathways to Strong Programs for the Future", "Strengthening Your Geoscience Program", and "Assessing Geoscience Programs". These events identified distinct gaps in understanding the experiences and perspectives of geoscience students during one of their most profound professional transitions. Therefore, the idea for the survey arose as a way to evaluate how the discipline is preparing and educating students, as well as identifying the students' desired career paths. The discussions at the workshops solidified the need for this survey and created the initial framework for the first pilot of the survey. The purpose of this assessment tool is to evaluate student preparedness for entering the geosciences workforce; identify student decision points for entering geosciences fields and remaining in the geosciences workforce; identify geosciences fields that students pursue in undergraduate and graduate school; collect information on students' expected career trajectories and geosciences professions; identify geosciences career sectors that are hiring new graduates; collect information about salary projections; overall effectiveness of geosciences departments regionally and nationally; demonstrate the value of geosciences degrees to future students, the institutions, and employers; and establish a benchmark to perform longitudinal studies of geosciences graduates to understand their career pathways and impacts of their educational experiences on these decisions. AGI's Student Exit Survey went through

    14. Stocking density effects on broiler welfare: identifying sensitive ranges for different indicators.

      PubMed

      Buijs, S; Keeling, L; Rettenbacher, S; Van Poucke, E; Tuyttens, F A M

      2009-08-01

      Although stocking density is perceived as a topic of major importance, no consensus has been reached on what density would allow for good welfare. In the present study, the welfare of 4 replicates of birds stocked at 8, 19, 29, 40, 45, 51, 61, and 72 broilers per pen (or 6, 15, 23, 33, 35, 41, 47, and 56 kg actually achieved BW/m(2)) was studied using 6 welfare indicators. Density did not affect bursa weight, mortality, or concentrations of corticosterone metabolites in droppings but did influence leg health (P = 0.015) and footpad and hock dermatitis (P < 0.001) and tended to influence fearfulness (P = 0.078). However, not every increase in density or group size, or both, led to poorer welfare for the affected indicators: leg health and fearfulness showed unexpected peaks at intermediate densities. Furthermore, the indicators were influenced at different densities: leg strength showed a steep decrease from 6 to 23 kg/m(2), hock dermatitis rose from 35 to 56 kg/m(2), and footpad dermatitis and fearfulness were only significantly higher at the highest density of 56 kg/m(2). No threshold stocking density above which all aspects of welfare were suddenly altered was found in this study. Instead, different aspects of welfare were influenced at different densities or group sizes, or both. Thus, evaluating the effects of stocking density on welfare as a whole would require either identification of acceptable levels for each separate indicator or a weighting of the indicators in an integrated welfare score. A tentative attempt to such an integration, made using equal weights for all parameters, showed a decrease in welfare as density increased (P < 0.001). The lowest 2 densities (6 and 15 kg/m(2)) scored better than most middle densities (23, 33, 35, and 47 kg/m(2)), whereas all densities scored better than the highest density (56 kg/m(2)).

    15. Identifying Potential Recommendation Domains for Conservation Agriculture in Ethiopia, Kenya, and Malawi

      NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

      Tesfaye, Kindie; Jaleta, Moti; Jena, Pradyot; Mutenje, Munyaradzi

      2015-02-01

      Conservation agriculture (CA) is being promoted as an option for reducing soil degradation, conserving water, enhancing crop productivity, and maintaining yield stability. However, CA is a knowledge- and technology-intensive practice, and may not be feasible or may not perform better than conventional agriculture under all conditions and farming systems. Using high resolution (≈1 km2) biophysical and socioeconomic geospatial data, this study identified potential recommendation domains (RDs) for CA in Ethiopia, Kenya, and Malawi. The biophysical variables used were soil texture, surface slope, and rainfall while the socioeconomic variables were market access and human and livestock population densities. Based on feasibility and comparative performance of CA over conventional agriculture, the biophysical and socioeconomic factors were first used to classify cultivated areas into three biophysical and three socioeconomic potential domains, respectively. Combinations of biophysical and socioeconomic domains were then used to develop potential RDs for CA based on adoption potential within the cultivated areas. About 39, 12, and 5 % of the cultivated areas showed high biophysical and socioeconomic potential while 50, 39, and 21 % of the cultivated areas showed high biophysical and medium socioeconomic potential for CA in Malawi, Kenya, and Ethiopia, respectively. The results indicate considerable acreages of land with high CA adoption potential in the mixed crop-livestock systems of the studied countries. However, there are large differences among countries depending on biophysical and socio-economic conditions. The information generated in this study could be used for targeting CA and prioritizing CA-related agricultural research and investment priorities in the three countries.

    16. Identifying potential recommendation domains for conservation agriculture in Ethiopia, Kenya, and Malawi.

      PubMed

      Tesfaye, Kindie; Jaleta, Moti; Jena, Pradyot; Mutenje, Munyaradzi

      2015-02-01

      Conservation agriculture (CA) is being promoted as an option for reducing soil degradation, conserving water, enhancing crop productivity, and maintaining yield stability. However, CA is a knowledge- and technology-intensive practice, and may not be feasible or may not perform better than conventional agriculture under all conditions and farming systems. Using high resolution (≈1 km(2)) biophysical and socioeconomic geospatial data, this study identified potential recommendation domains (RDs) for CA in Ethiopia, Kenya, and Malawi. The biophysical variables used were soil texture, surface slope, and rainfall while the socioeconomic variables were market access and human and livestock population densities. Based on feasibility and comparative performance of CA over conventional agriculture, the biophysical and socioeconomic factors were first used to classify cultivated areas into three biophysical and three socioeconomic potential domains, respectively. Combinations of biophysical and socioeconomic domains were then used to develop potential RDs for CA based on adoption potential within the cultivated areas. About 39, 12, and 5% of the cultivated areas showed high biophysical and socioeconomic potential while 50, 39, and 21% of the cultivated areas showed high biophysical and medium socioeconomic potential for CA in Malawi, Kenya, and Ethiopia, respectively. The results indicate considerable acreages of land with high CA adoption potential in the mixed crop-livestock systems of the studied countries. However, there are large differences among countries depending on biophysical and socio-economic conditions. The information generated in this study could be used for targeting CA and prioritizing CA-related agricultural research and investment priorities in the three countries.

    17. An Attempt to Identify Indicators of Competence on Mechanical Maintenance Tasks.

      DTIC Science & Technology

      1979-01-01

      INDICATORS OF COMPETENCE ON MECHANICAL MAINTENANCE TASKS CHAPTER 1 INTRODUCTION BACKGROUND One responsibility of Army service schools is to certify trainee ...have two purposes: to provide feedback on the quality of training and to certify whether trainees are able to perform the tasks addressed in training...The most common problem with this approach is that there are too many tasks to conduct a hands-on test for each trainee on each task. Trainers

    18. Cluster analysis identifies aminoacid compositional features that indicate Toxoplasma gondii adhesin proteins

      PubMed Central

      Arenas, Ailan F; Salcedo, Gladys E; Moncada, Diego M; Erazo, Diego A; Osorio, Juan F; Gomez-Marin, Jorge E

      2012-01-01

      Toxoplasma gondii invade host cells using a multi-step process that depends on the regulated secretion of adhesions. To identify key primary sequence features of adhesins in this parasite, we analyze the relative frequency of individual amino acids, their dipeptide frequencies, and the polarity, polarizability and Van der Waals volume of the individual amino acids by using cluster analysis. This method identified cysteine as a key amino acid in the Toxoplasma adhesin group. The best vector algorithm of non-concatenated features was for 2 attributes: the single amino acid relative frequency and the dipeptide frequency. Polarity, polarizability and Van der Waals volume were not good classificatory attributes. Single amino acid attributes clustered unambiguously 67 apicomplexan hypothetical adhesins. This algorithm was also useful for clustering hypothetical Toxoplasma target host receptors. All of the cluster performances had over 70% sensitivity and 80% specificity. Compositional aminoacid data can be useful for improving machine learning-based prediction software when homology and structural data are not sufficient. PMID:23144551

    19. A methodological approach to identify external factors for indicator-based risk adjustment illustrated by a cataract surgery register

      PubMed Central

      2014-01-01

      Background Risk adjustment is crucial for comparison of outcome in medical care. Knowledge of the external factors that impact measured outcome but that cannot be influenced by the physician is a prerequisite for this adjustment. To date, a universal and reproducible method for identification of the relevant external factors has not been published. The selection of external factors in current quality assurance programmes is mainly based on expert opinion. We propose and demonstrate a methodology for identification of external factors requiring risk adjustment of outcome indicators and we apply it to a cataract surgery register. Methods Defined test criteria to determine the relevance for risk adjustment are “clinical relevance” and “statistical significance”. Clinical relevance of the association is presumed when observed success rates of the indicator in the presence and absence of the external factor exceed a pre-specified range of 10%. Statistical significance of the association between the external factor and outcome indicators is assessed by univariate stratification and multivariate logistic regression adjustment. The cataract surgery register was set up as part of a German multi-centre register trial for out-patient cataract surgery in three high-volume surgical sites. A total of 14,924 patient follow-ups have been documented since 2005. Eight external factors potentially relevant for risk adjustment were related to the outcome indicators “refractive accuracy” and “visual rehabilitation” 2–5 weeks after surgery. Results The clinical relevance criterion confirmed 2 (“refractive accuracy”) and 5 (“visual rehabilitation”) external factors. The significance criterion was verified in two ways. Univariate and multivariate analyses revealed almost identical external factors: 4 were related to “refractive accuracy” and 7 (6) to “visual rehabilitation”. Two (“refractive accuracy”) and 5 (“visual rehabilitation”) factors

    20. Indicators to Identify Trafficking in Human Beings for the Purpose of Organ Removal.

      PubMed

      de Jong, Jessica; Ambagtsheer, Frederike

      2016-02-01

      This article presents indicators to support transplant professionals, judicial and law enforcement authorities and victim support workers with the identification of trafficking in persons for the purpose of organ removal. It outlines the legal and illegal service providers that facilitate trafficking in human beings for the purpose of organ removal and guides the reader through the following criminal process: recruitment, transport, entrance, documents, housing, transplant, aftercare, and finance. Identification of illegal transplant activities by transplant professionals can support police and judiciary with the investigation, disruption, and prosecuting of trafficking networks.

    1. Indicators to Identify Trafficking in Human Beings for the Purpose of Organ Removal

      PubMed Central

      de Jong, Jessica; Ambagtsheer, Frederike

      2016-01-01

      Abstract This article presents indicators to support transplant professionals, judicial and law enforcement authorities and victim support workers with the identification of trafficking in persons for the purpose of organ removal. It outlines the legal and illegal service providers that facilitate trafficking in human beings for the purpose of organ removal and guides the reader through the following criminal process: recruitment, transport, entrance, documents, housing, transplant, aftercare, and finance. Identification of illegal transplant activities by transplant professionals can support police and judiciary with the investigation, disruption, and prosecuting of trafficking networks. PMID:27500249

    2. Novel high-throughput screen against Candida albicans identifies antifungal potentiators and agents effective against biofilms

      PubMed Central

      LaFleur, Michael D.; Lucumi, Edinson; Napper, Andrew D.; Diamond, Scott L.; Lewis, Kim

      2011-01-01

      Objectives Microbial adhesion and biofilms have important implications for human health and disease. Candida albicans is an opportunistic pathogen which forms drug-resistant biofilms that contribute to the recalcitrance of disease. We have developed a high-throughput screen for potentiators of clotrimazole, a common therapy for Candida infections, including vaginitis and thrush. The screen was performed against C. albicans biofilms grown in microtitre plates in order to target the most resilient forms of the pathogen. Methods Biofilm growth, in individual wells of 384-well plates, was measured using the metabolic indicator alamarBlue® and found to be very consistent and reproducible. This assay was used to test the effect of more than 120 000 small molecule compounds from the NIH Molecular Libraries Small Molecule Repository, and compounds that enhanced the activity of clotrimazole or acted on the biofilms alone were identified as hits. Results Nineteen compounds (0.016% hit rate) were identified and found to cause more than 30% metabolic inhibition of biofilms compared with clotrimazole alone, which had a modest effect on biofilm viability at the concentration tested. Hits were confirmed for activity against biofilms with dose–response measurements. Several compounds had increased activity in combination with clotrimazole, including a 1,3-benzothiazole scaffold that exhibited a >100-fold improvement against biofilms of three separate C. albicans isolates. Cytotoxicity experiments using human fibroblasts confirmed the presence of lead molecules with favourable antifungal activity relative to cytotoxicity. Conclusions We have validated a novel approach to identify antifungal potentiators and completed a high-throughput screen to identify small molecules with activity against C. albicans biofilms. These small molecules may specifically target the biofilm and make currently available antifungals more effective. PMID:21393183

    3. Chemical and structural indicators for large redox potentials in Fe-based positive electrode materials.

      PubMed

      Melot, Brent C; Scanlon, David O; Reynaud, Marine; Rousse, Gwenaëlle; Chotard, Jean-Noël; Henry, Marc; Tarascon, Jean-Marie

      2014-07-23

      Li-ion batteries have enabled a revolution in the way portable consumer-electronics are powered and will play an important role as large-scale electrochemical storage applications like electric vehicles and grid-storage are developed. The ability to identify and design promising new positive insertion electrodes will be vital in continuing to push Li-ion technology to its fullest potential. Utilizing a combination of computational tools and structural analysis, we report new indicators which will facilitate the recognition of phases with the desired redox potential. Most importantly of these, we find there is a strong correlation between the presence of Li ions sitting in close-proximity to the redox center of polyanionic phases and the open circuit voltage in Fe-based cathodes. This common structural feature suggests that the bonding associated with Li may have a secondary inductive effect which increases the ionic character of Fe bonds beyond what is typically expected based purely on arguments of electronegativity associated with the polyanionic group. This correlation is supported by ab initio calculations which show the Bader charge increases (reflecting an increased ionicity) in a nearly linear fashion with the experimental cell potentials. These features are demonstrated to be consistent across a wide variety of compositions and structures and should help to facilitate the design of new, high-potential, and environmentally sustainable insertion electrodes.

    4. A Program Evaluation Model: Using Bloom's Taxonomy to Identify Outcome Indicators in Outcomes-Based Program Evaluations

      ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

      McNeil, Rita C.

      2011-01-01

      Outcomes-based program evaluation is a systematic approach to identifying outcome indicators and measuring results against those indicators. One dimension of program evaluation is assessing the level of learner acquisition to determine if learning objectives were achieved as intended. The purpose of the proposed model is to use Bloom's Taxonomy to…

    5. Comparative proteomic profiling identifies potential prognostic factors for human clear cell renal cell carcinoma.

      PubMed

      Sun, Xiang; Zhang, Hongwei; Luo, Longhua; Zhong, Kezhao; Ma, Yushui; Fan, Linlin; Fu, Da; Wan, Lijuan

      2016-12-01

      The identification of markers for disease diagnostic, prognostic, or predictive purposes will have a great effect in improving patient management. Proteomic‑based approaches for biomarker discovery are promising strategies used in cancer research. In this study, we performed quantitative proteomic analysis on four patients including clear cell renal cell carcinoma (ccRCC) and paired adjacent non‑cancerous renal tissues using label‑free quantitative proteomics and liquid chromatography‑tandem mass spectrometry (LC‑MS/MS) to identify differentially expressed proteins. Among 3,061 identified non‑redundant proteins, we found that 210 proteins were differentially expressed (83 overexpressed and 127 underexpressed) in ccRCC tissue when compared with normal kidney tissues. Two most significantly dysregulated proteins (PCK1 and SNRPF) were chosen to be confirmed by western blotting. Pathway analysis of 210 differentially expressed proteins showed that dysregulated proteins are related to many cancer‑related biological processes such as oxidative phosphorylation, glycolysis and amino acid synthetic pathways. Online survival analysis indicated the prognostic value of these dysregulated proteins. In conclusion, we identified some potential diagnostic biomarkers for ccRCC and an in‑depth understanding of their involved biological pathways may help pave the way to discover new therapeutic strategies for ccRCC.

    6. Field-directed assembly of nanowires: identifying directors, disruptors and indices to maximize the device yield

      NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

      Sam, Mahshid; Moghimian, Nima; Bhiladvala, Rustom B.

      2015-12-01

      Individually-addressable nano-electro-mechanical (NEMS) devices have been used to demonstrate sensitive mass detection to the single-proton level, as well as neutral-particle mass spectrometry. The cost of individually securing or patterning such devices is proportional to their number or the chip area covered. This limits statistical support for new research, as well as paths to the commercial availability of extraordinarily sensitive instruments. Field-directed assembly of synthesized nanowires addresses this problem and shows potential for low-cost, large-area coverage with NEMS devices. For positive dielectrophoresis (pDEP) as the main assembly director, the space of field, geometric and material parameters is large, with combinations that can serve either as directors or disruptors for directed assembly. We seek parameter values to obtain the best yield, by introducing a rational framework to reduce trial-and-error. We show that sorting the disruptors by severity and eliminating those weakly coupled to the director, allows reduction of the parameter space. The remaining disruptors are then represented compactly by dimensionless parameters. In the example protocol chosen, a single dimensionless parameter, the yield index, allows minimization of disruptors by the choice of frequency. Following this, the voltage may be selected to maximize the yield. Using this framework, we obtained 94% pre-clamped and 88% post-clamped yield over 57000 nanowire sites. Organizing the parameter space using a director-disruptor framework, with economy introduced by non-dimensional parameters, provides a path to controllably decrease the effort and cost of manufacturing nanoscale devices. This should help in the commercialization of individually addressable nanodevices.Individually-addressable nano-electro-mechanical (NEMS) devices have been used to demonstrate sensitive mass detection to the single-proton level, as well as neutral-particle mass spectrometry. The cost of

    7. Thermal Field Indicator for Identifying Active Faults and its Instability From Laboratory Experiments

      NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

      Ma, J.; Liu, L.; Liu, P.; Ma, S.

      2007-12-01

      The relationship between the thermal filed and strain field during deformation of faults is the physical basis to clarify whether satellite infrared information and the ground temperature field can be used to study fault activity. This study attempts to discuss these problems by experiments in the laboratory. The two-direction servo-control system was used to load on the samples with compressional and extensional en echelon faults. An infrared thermal image system and a contact-type thermometer recorded synchronously variations of the bright temperature field of infrared radiation and temperature field during deformation of the rock specimens. A digital CCD camera and a soft ware based on the digital speckle correlation method (DSCM) was utilized to capture images and to analyze them, yielding processes of displacement and strain fields. The experimental result shows as follows: 1 The temperature is highest at the jog area of the compressional en echelon faults, whereas that is lowest at the extensional en echelon faults prior to failure of the jog area. The record by DSCM displays that the mean strain of the jog area is largest for the compressional en echelon faults, while that is smallest for the extensional en echelon faults. These mean that the temperature field has clear responses to the opposite stress states at the jog areas of two kinds of en echelon faults, providing an indicator for determining whether the fault segment has slid. 2 The en echelon faults experience two deformation stages from stress building up and fault propagating at the jog area to unstable sliding along the fault. Correspondingly the mechanism of heating-up is turned from strain heating into frictional heating. Three kinds of phenomena have been observed at the jog area and its vicinity during the stage of transformation. They are temperature drop, fast fluctuation of temperature, and pulses of temperature rising, respectively. Mechanism of these phenomena is discussed. 3 These

    8. Using Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs to Identify Indicators of Potential Mass Migration Events

      DTIC Science & Technology

      2016-03-23

      11 Figure 4: Migrant Risk Perception Curve ............................................................................ 12 Figure 5...37 Figure 24: Transparency International’s Corruption Perception Index vs Refugee Outflow Numbers...GDP ....................................................................... 43 Figure 29: Refugees Influx vs Corruption Perception Index

    9. A Procedure for Identifying and Surveying Potential Users of Public Libraries.

      ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

      D'Elia, George

      1980-01-01

      Describes a procedure for identifying a group of potential users from among current nonusers in a sample of adults drawn from the library's community. This procedure was designed for use in conducting marketing surveys for public libraries. (Author/CHC)

    10. Using a watershed-centric approach to identify potentially impacted beaches

      EPA Science Inventory

      Beaches can be affected by a variety of contaminants. Of particular concern are beaches impacted by human fecal contamination and urban runoff. This poster demonstrates a methodology to identify potentially impacted beaches using Geographic Information Systems (GIS). Since h...

    11. Use of genotoxicity tests in a TIE to identify chemicals potentially affecting human health

      SciTech Connect

      Goudey, J.S.; Shaw, R.D.; Swanson, S.M.; Nadeau, S.

      1995-12-31

      Imperial Oil operates a sour gas processing plant in southern Alberta that has, for the past several years, been the focus of considerable public and regulatory concern over perceived contamination of soils and groundwater on a nearby ranch. Elevated concentrations of DOC ({approximately}140 mg/L) have been received in groundwater underlying the plant site. Two process-related chemicals, sulfolane and diisopropanolamine (DIPA), had been previously identified as the primary components of the DOC plume, although the chemicals associated with 30% of the DOC could not be identified. A risk assessment was initiated in 1994 to determine whether off-site migration of sulfolane and DIPA or of other unidentified contaminants poses a risks to human health and/or ecological receptors. One component of the risk assessment included conducting a TIE to help identify the chemical(s) in contaminated groundwater underlying the gas plant that might adversely affect human health. Three endpoints were utilized in the TIE: MicroTox, SOS-Chromotest and the Ames test. MicroTox was used since it exhibited a response to whole groundwater from the site, while the genotoxicity tests were used because DIPA reportedly causes a response in the Ames test and because of the concern over potential human health affects arising from other unidentified contaminants. Results of the TIE indicated that the chemicals causing the toxicity in the groundwater sample were water soluble compounds, with similar characteristics to the process chemicals used at the gas plant and detected at high concentrations in groundwater from the plant site. These results provided additional evidence to help focus the risk assessment on the chemicals sulfolane and diisopropanolamine.

    12. Senescence marker protein 30 (SMP30) serves as a potential prognostic indicator in hepatocellular carcinoma

      PubMed Central

      Mo, Zhijing; Zheng, Shunxin; Lv, Zhilue; Zhuang, Yuan; Lan, Xiuwan; Wang, Feng; Lu, Xiaoling; Zhao, Yongxiang; Zhou, Sufang

      2016-01-01

      Senescence marker protein 30 (SMP30) has been identified as a tumor-related molecule of hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC). Its clinical significance and underlying mechanisms in HCC tissues, however, remain largely unexplored. We have demonstrated a preferentially expressed SMP30 in normal liver using a tissue microarray. By employing real-time quantitative PCR, two tissue microarrays and Oncomine database analysis, we have also shown that the SMP30 in HCC tissues has significantly reduced when compared with that in paired adjacent non-tumor tissues (P = 0.0037). The reduced expression of SMP30 is very noticeably related to larger tumor size (P = 0.012), enhanced TNM (P = 0.009) and worse survival (P < 0.0001) in HCC patients. The analyses using Cox regression have indicated that the decreased SMP30 expression is an independent risk to the reduced overall survival rate of HCC patients (P = 0.001), and the down-regulation of SMP30 in HCC might be mediated by DNA methylation. Moreover, genes co-expressed with SMP30 may affect the prognosis through apoptotic process, biological adhesion and blood coagulation by PANTHER analyses. Our studies have indicated that the SMP30 may serve as a candidate of HCC clinical prognostic marker and a potential therapeutic target. PMID:27991558

    13. Evaluation of indicated suicide risk prevention approaches for potential high school dropouts.

      PubMed Central

      Thompson, E A; Eggert, L L; Randell, B P; Pike, K C

      2001-01-01

      OBJECTIVES: This study evaluated the efficacy of 2 indicated preventive interventions, postintervention and at 9-month follow-up. METHODS: Drawn from a pool of potential high school dropouts, 460 youths were identified as being at risk for suicide and participated in 1 of 3 conditions randomly assigned by school: (1) Counselors CARE (C-CARE) (n = 150), a brief one-to-one assessment and crisis intervention; (2) Coping and Support Training (CAST) (n = 155), a small-group skills-building and social support intervention delivered with C-CARE; and (3) usual-care control (n = 155). Survey instruments were administered pre-intervention, following C-CARE (4 weeks), following CAST (10 weeks), and at a 9-month follow-up. RESULTS: Growth curve analyses showed significant rates of decline in attitude toward suicide and suicidal ideation associated with the experimental interventions. C-CARE and CAST, compared with usual care, also were effective in reducing depression and hopelessness. Among females, reductions in anxiety and anger were greater in response to the experimental programs. CAST was most effective in enhancing and sustaining personal control and problem-solving coping for males and females. CONCLUSIONS: School-based, indicated prevention approaches are feasible and effective for reducing suicidal behaviors and related emotional distress and for enhancing protective factors. PMID:11344882

    14. Analysis of the Methods Used for Identifying Potential School Dropouts. Final Report.

      ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

      Neyman, C. A., Jr.

      This final report analyzes the research methods used in the identification of potential dropouts. This program was administered under Title I (ESEA, 1965) in the District of Columbia (see also ED 049 319). Three forms were used in the evaluation of Title I students identified as potential dropouts during the school year 1967-68: (1) Student…

    15. A fibrinogen-related protein identified from hepatopancreas of crayfish is a potential pattern recognition receptor.

      PubMed

      Chen, Qiming; Bai, Suhua; Dong, Chaohua

      2016-09-01

      Fibrinogen-related protein (FREP) family is a large group of proteins containing fibrinogen-like (FBG) domain and plays multiple physiological roles in animals. However, their immune functions in crayfish are not fully explored. In the present study, a novel fibrinogen-like protein (designated as PcFBN1) was identified and characterized from hepatopancreas of red swamp crayfish Procambarus clarkii. The cDNA sequence of PcFBN1 contains an open reading frame (ORF) of 1353 bp encoding a protein of 450 amino acids. Sequence and structural analysis indicated that PcFBN1 contains an FBG domain in C-terminal and a putative signal peptide of 19 amino acids in N-terminal. Semi-quantitative PCR revealed that the main expression of PcFBN1 was observed in hepatopancreas and hemocyte. Temporal expression analysis exhibited that PcFBN1 expression could be significantly induced by heat-killed Aeromonas hydrophila. Tissue distribution and temporal change of PcFBN1 suggested that PcFBN1 may be involved in immune responses of red swamp crayfish. Recombinant PcFBN1 protein binds and agglutinates both gram-negative bacteria Escherichia coli and gram-positive bacteria Micrococcus lysodeikticus. Moreover, binding and agglutination is Ca(2+) dependent. Further analysis indicated that PcFBN1 recognizes some acetyl group-containing substance LPS and PGN. RNAi experiment revealed that PcFBN1 is required for bacterial clearance and survival from A. hydrophila infection. Reduction of PcFBN1 expression significantly decreased the survival and enhanced the number of A. hydrophila in the hemolymph. These results indicated that PcFBN1 plays an important role in the innate immunity of red swamp crayfish as a potential pattern recognition receptor.

    16. Surveillance methods for identifying, characterizing, and monitoring tobacco products: potential reduced exposure products as an example

      PubMed Central

      O’Connor, Richard J.; Cummings, K. Michael; Rees, Vaughan W.; Connolly, Gregory N.; Norton, Kaila J.; Sweanor, David; Parascandola, Mark; Hatsukami, Dorothy K.; Shields, Peter G.

      2015-01-01

      Tobacco products are widely sold and marketed, yet integrated data systems for identifying, tracking, and characterizing products are lacking. Tobacco manufacturers recently have developed potential reduction exposure products (PREPs) with implied or explicit health claims. Currently, a systematic approach for identifying, defining, and evaluating PREPs sold at the local, state or national levels in the US has not been developed. Identifying, characterizing, and monitoring new tobacco products could be greatly enhanced with a responsive surveillance system. This paper critically reviews available surveillance data sources for identifying and tracking tobacco products, including PREPs, evaluating strengths and weaknesses of potential data sources in light of their reliability and validity. Absent regulations mandating disclosure of product-specific information, it is likely that public health officials will need to rely on a variety of imperfect data sources to help identify, characterize, and monitor tobacco products, including PREPs. PMID:19959680

    17. A systems biology strategy to identify molecular mechanisms of action and protein indicators of traumatic brain injury.

      PubMed

      Yu, Chenggang; Boutté, Angela; Yu, Xueping; Dutta, Bhaskar; Feala, Jacob D; Schmid, Kara; Dave, Jitendra; Tawa, Gregory J; Wallqvist, Anders; Reifman, Jaques

      2015-02-01

      The multifactorial nature of traumatic brain injury (TBI), especially the complex secondary tissue injury involving intertwined networks of molecular pathways that mediate cellular behavior, has confounded attempts to elucidate the pathology underlying the progression of TBI. Here, systems biology strategies are exploited to identify novel molecular mechanisms and protein indicators of brain injury. To this end, we performed a meta-analysis of four distinct high-throughput gene expression studies involving different animal models of TBI. By using canonical pathways and a large human protein-interaction network as a scaffold, we separately overlaid the gene expression data from each study to identify molecular signatures that were conserved across the different studies. At 24 hr after injury, the significantly activated molecular signatures were nonspecific to TBI, whereas the significantly suppressed molecular signatures were specific to the nervous system. In particular, we identified a suppressed subnetwork consisting of 58 highly interacting, coregulated proteins associated with synaptic function. We selected three proteins from this subnetwork, postsynaptic density protein 95, nitric oxide synthase 1, and disrupted in schizophrenia 1, and hypothesized that their abundance would be significantly reduced after TBI. In a penetrating ballistic-like brain injury rat model of severe TBI, Western blot analysis confirmed our hypothesis. In addition, our analysis recovered 12 previously identified protein biomarkers of TBI. The results suggest that systems biology may provide an efficient, high-yield approach to generate testable hypotheses that can be experimentally validated to identify novel mechanisms of action and molecular indicators of TBI.

    18. The stingless bee species, Scaptotrigona aff. depilis, as a potential indicator of environmental pesticide contamination.

      PubMed

      de Souza Rosa, Annelise; I'Anson Price, Robbie; Ferreira Caliman, Maria Juliana; Pereira Queiroz, Elisa; Blochtein, Betina; Sílvia Soares Pires, Carmen; Imperatriz-Fonseca, Vera Lucia

      2015-08-01

      Neonicotinoids have the potential to enter the diet of pollinators that collect resources from contaminated plants. The species Scaptotrigona aff. depilis (Moure, 1942) can be a useful indicator of the prevalence of these chemicals in the environment. Using high-performance liquid chromatography-mass spectrometry, the authors devised a protocol for neonicotinoid residue extraction and detected the presence of neonicotinoids in the bee bodies. Thus, the authors consider this species to be a potential indicator of environmental contamination.

    19. Release of genetically engineered insects: a framework to identify potential ecological effects

      PubMed Central

      David, Aaron S; Kaser, Joe M; Morey, Amy C; Roth, Alexander M; Andow, David A

      2013-01-01

      Genetically engineered (GE) insects have the potential to radically change pest management worldwide. With recent approvals of GE insect releases, there is a need for a synthesized framework to evaluate their potential ecological and evolutionary effects. The effects may occur in two phases: a transitory phase when the focal population changes in density, and a steady state phase when it reaches a new, constant density. We review potential effects of a rapid change in insect density related to population outbreaks, biological control, invasive species, and other GE organisms to identify a comprehensive list of potential ecological and evolutionary effects of GE insect releases. We apply this framework to the Anopheles gambiae mosquito – a malaria vector being engineered to suppress the wild mosquito population – to identify effects that may occur during the transitory and steady state phases after release. Our methodology reveals many potential effects in each phase, perhaps most notably those dealing with immunity in the transitory phase, and with pathogen and vector evolution in the steady state phase. Importantly, this framework identifies knowledge gaps in mosquito ecology. Identifying effects in the transitory and steady state phases allows more rigorous identification of the potential ecological effects of GE insect release. PMID:24198955

    20. Release of genetically engineered insects: a framework to identify potential ecological effects.

      PubMed

      David, Aaron S; Kaser, Joe M; Morey, Amy C; Roth, Alexander M; Andow, David A

      2013-10-01

      Genetically engineered (GE) insects have the potential to radically change pest management worldwide. With recent approvals of GE insect releases, there is a need for a synthesized framework to evaluate their potential ecological and evolutionary effects. The effects may occur in two phases: a transitory phase when the focal population changes in density, and a steady state phase when it reaches a new, constant density. We review potential effects of a rapid change in insect density related to population outbreaks, biological control, invasive species, and other GE organisms to identify a comprehensive list of potential ecological and evolutionary effects of GE insect releases. We apply this framework to the Anopheles gambiae mosquito - a malaria vector being engineered to suppress the wild mosquito population - to identify effects that may occur during the transitory and steady state phases after release. Our methodology reveals many potential effects in each phase, perhaps most notably those dealing with immunity in the transitory phase, and with pathogen and vector evolution in the steady state phase. Importantly, this framework identifies knowledge gaps in mosquito ecology. Identifying effects in the transitory and steady state phases allows more rigorous identification of the potential ecological effects of GE insect release.

    1. Enterococcus phages as potential tool for identifying sewage inputs in the Great Lakes region

      USGS Publications Warehouse

      ,; K.Vijayavel,; Byappanahalli, Muruleedhara N.; J. Ebdon,; ,; H. Taylor,; ,; Whitman, Richard L.; ,; D.R. Kashian,

      2014-01-01

      Bacteriophages are viruses living in bacteria that can be used as a tool to detect fecal contamination in surface waters around the world. However, the lack of a universal host strain makes them unsuitable for tracking fecal sources. We evaluated the suitability of two newly isolated Enterococcus host strains (ENT-49 and ENT-55) capable for identifying sewage contamination in impacted waters by targeting phages specific to these hosts. Both host strains were isolated from wastewater samples and identified as E. faecium by 16S rRNA gene sequencing. Occurrence of Enterococcus phages was evaluated in sewage samples (n = 15) from five wastewater treatment plants and in fecal samples from twenty-two species of wild and domesticated animals (individual samples; n = 22). Levels of Enterococcus phages, F + coliphages, Escherichia coli and enterococci were examined from four rivers, four beaches, and three harbors. Enterococcus phages enumeration was at similar levels (Mean = 6.72 Log PFU/100 mL) to F + coliphages in all wastewater samples, but were absent from all non-human fecal sources tested. The phages infecting Enterococcus spp. and F + coliphages were not detected in the river samples (detection threshold < 10 PFU/100 mL), but were present in the beach and harbor samples (range = 1.83 to 2.86 Log PFU/100 mL). Slightly higher concentrations (range = 3.22 to 3.69 Log MPN/100 mL) of E. coli and enterococci when compared to F + coliphages and Enterococcus phages, were observed in the river, beach and harbor samples. Our findings suggest that the bacteriophages associated with these particular Enterococcus host strains offer potentially sensitive and human-source specific indicators of enteric pathogen risk.

    2. Analytical approaches to identify potential migrants in polyester-polyurethane can coatings.

      PubMed

      Louise Bradley, Emma; Driffield, Malcolm; Guthrie, James; Harmer, Nick; Thomas Oldring, Peter Kenneth; Castle, Laurence

      2009-12-01

      The safety of a polyester-polyurethane can coating has been assessed using a suite of complementary analytical methods to identify and estimate the concentrations of potential chemical migrants. The polyester was based on phthalic acids and aliphatic diols. The polyisocyanate cross-linking agent was 1-isocyanato-3-isocyanatomethyl-3,5,5-trimethyl cyclohexane homopolymer (IPDI) blocked with methylethylketone oxime (MEKO) to make a one-part formulation. The overall migrate, obtained using solvent extraction of cured films, comprised almost completely of 12 cyclic and one linear polyester oligomer up to molecular weight 800 and containing up to six monomer units. These 13 oligomers covered a total of 28 isomeric forms. Other minor components detected were plasticisers and surfactants as well as impurities present in the starting materials. There was no detectable residue of either the blocked isocyanate (<0.01 microg/dm(2)) used as the starting substance or the unblocked isocyanate (<0.02 microg/dm(2)). The level of extractable IPDI was used as an indicator of the completeness of cure in experimental coatings. These studies revealed that there was an influence of time, temperature and catalyst content. Polymerisation was also influenced by the additives used and by the ageing of the wet coating formulation over several months. These studies allow parameters to be specified to ensure that commercial production coatings receive a full cure giving low migration characteristics.

    3. Multiplatform molecular profiling identifies potentially targetable biomarkers in malignant phyllodes tumors of the breast.

      PubMed

      Gatalica, Zoran; Vranic, Semir; Ghazalpour, Anatole; Xiu, Joanne; Ocal, Idris Tolgay; McGill, John; Bender, Ryan P; Discianno, Erin; Schlum, Aaron; Sanati, Souzan; Palazzo, Juan; Reddy, Sandeep; Pockaj, Barbara

      2016-01-12

      Malignant phyllodes tumor is a rare breast malignancy with sarcomatous overgrowth and with limited effective treatment options for recurrent and metastatic cases. Recent clinical trials indicated a potential for anti-angiogenic, anti-EGFR and immunotherapeutic approaches for patients with sarcomas, which led us to investigate these and other targetable pathways in malignant phyllodes tumor of the breast. Thirty-six malignant phyllodes tumors (including 8 metastatic tumors with two cases having matched primary and metastatic tumors) were profiled using gene sequencing, gene copy number analysis, whole genome expression, and protein expression. Whole genome expression analysis demonstrated consistent over-expression of genes involved in angiogenesis including VEGFA, Angiopoietin-2, VCAM1, PDGFRA, and PTTG1. EGFR protein overexpression was observed in 26/27 (96%) of cases with amplification of the EGFR gene in 8/24 (33%) cases. Two EGFR mutations were identified including EGFRvIII and a presumed pathogenic V774M mutation, respectively. The most common pathogenic mutations included TP53 (50%) and PIK3CA (15%). Cases with matched primary and metastatic tumors harbored identical mutations in both sites (PIK3CA/KRAS and RB1 gene mutations, respectively). Tumor expression of PD-L1 immunoregulatory protein was observed in 3/22 (14%) of cases. Overexpression of molecular biomarkers of increased angiogenesis, EGFR and immune checkpoints provides novel targeted therapy options in malignant phyllodes tumors of the breast.

    4. Identifying Potential Mechanisms Enabling Acidophily in the Ammonia-Oxidizing Archaeon “Candidatus Nitrosotalea devanaterra”

      PubMed Central

      Sayavedra-Soto, Luis A.; Gallois, Nicolas; Schouten, Stefan; Stein, Lisa Y.; Prosser, James I.; Nicol, Graeme W.

      2016-01-01

      Ammonia oxidation is the first and rate-limiting step in nitrification and is dominated by two distinct groups of microorganisms in soil: ammonia-oxidizing archaea (AOA) and ammonia-oxidizing bacteria (AOB). AOA are often more abundant than AOB and dominate activity in acid soils. The mechanism of ammonia oxidation under acidic conditions has been a long-standing paradox. While high rates of ammonia oxidation are frequently measured in acid soils, cultivated ammonia oxidizers grew only at near-neutral pH when grown in standard laboratory culture. Although a number of mechanisms have been demonstrated to enable neutrophilic AOB growth at low pH in the laboratory, these have not been demonstrated in soil, and the recent cultivation of the obligately acidophilic ammonia oxidizer “Candidatus Nitrosotalea devanaterra” provides a more parsimonious explanation for the observed high rates of activity. Analysis of the sequenced genome, transcriptional activity, and lipid content of “Ca. Nitrosotalea devanaterra” reveals that previously proposed mechanisms used by AOB for growth at low pH are not essential for archaeal ammonia oxidation in acidic environments. Instead, the genome indicates that “Ca. Nitrosotalea devanaterra” contains genes encoding both a predicted high-affinity substrate acquisition system and potential pH homeostasis mechanisms absent in neutrophilic AOA. Analysis of mRNA revealed that candidate genes encoding the proposed homeostasis mechanisms were all expressed during acidophilic growth, and lipid profiling by high-performance liquid chromatography–mass spectrometry (HPLC-MS) demonstrated that the membrane lipids of “Ca. Nitrosotalea devanaterra” were not dominated by crenarchaeol, as found in neutrophilic AOA. This study for the first time describes a genome of an obligately acidophilic ammonia oxidizer and identifies potential mechanisms enabling this unique phenotype for future biochemical characterization. PMID:26896134

    5. Identifying Potential Mechanisms Enabling Acidophily in the Ammonia-Oxidizing Archaeon "Candidatus Nitrosotalea devanaterra".

      PubMed

      Lehtovirta-Morley, Laura E; Sayavedra-Soto, Luis A; Gallois, Nicolas; Schouten, Stefan; Stein, Lisa Y; Prosser, James I; Nicol, Graeme W

      2016-05-01

      Ammonia oxidation is the first and rate-limiting step in nitrification and is dominated by two distinct groups of microorganisms in soil: ammonia-oxidizing archaea (AOA) and ammonia-oxidizing bacteria (AOB). AOA are often more abundant than AOB and dominate activity in acid soils. The mechanism of ammonia oxidation under acidic conditions has been a long-standing paradox. While high rates of ammonia oxidation are frequently measured in acid soils, cultivated ammonia oxidizers grew only at near-neutral pH when grown in standard laboratory culture. Although a number of mechanisms have been demonstrated to enable neutrophilic AOB growth at low pH in the laboratory, these have not been demonstrated in soil, and the recent cultivation of the obligately acidophilic ammonia oxidizer "Candidatus Nitrosotalea devanaterra" provides a more parsimonious explanation for the observed high rates of activity. Analysis of the sequenced genome, transcriptional activity, and lipid content of "Ca Nitrosotalea devanaterra" reveals that previously proposed mechanisms used by AOB for growth at low pH are not essential for archaeal ammonia oxidation in acidic environments. Instead, the genome indicates that "Ca Nitrosotalea devanaterra" contains genes encoding both a predicted high-affinity substrate acquisition system and potential pH homeostasis mechanisms absent in neutrophilic AOA. Analysis of mRNA revealed that candidate genes encoding the proposed homeostasis mechanisms were all expressed during acidophilic growth, and lipid profiling by high-performance liquid chromatography-mass spectrometry (HPLC-MS) demonstrated that the membrane lipids of "Ca Nitrosotalea devanaterra" were not dominated by crenarchaeol, as found in neutrophilic AOA. This study for the first time describes a genome of an obligately acidophilic ammonia oxidizer and identifies potential mechanisms enabling this unique phenotype for future biochemical characterization.

    6. Potential Biomarkers of Fatigue Identified by Plasma Metabolome Analysis in Rats

      PubMed Central

      Kume, Satoshi; Yamato, Masanori; Tamura, Yasuhisa; Jin, Guanghua; Nakano, Masayuki; Miyashige, Yukiharu; Eguchi, Asami; Ogata, Yoshiyuki; Goda, Nobuhito; Iwai, Kazuhiro; Yamano, Emi; Watanabe, Yasuyoshi; Soga, Tomoyoshi; Kataoka, Yosky

      2015-01-01

      In the present study, prior to the establishment of a method for the clinical diagnosis of chronic fatigue in humans, we validated the utility of plasma metabolomic analysis in a rat model of fatigue using capillary electrophoresis-mass spectrometry (CE-MS). In order to obtain a fatigued animal group, rats were placed in a cage filled with water to a height of 2.2 cm for 5 days. A food-restricted group, in which rats were limited to 10 g/d of food (around 50% of the control group), was also assessed. The food-restricted group exhibited weight reduction similar to that of the fatigued group. CE-MS measurements were performed to evaluate the profile of food intake-dependent metabolic changes, as well as the profile in fatigue loading, resulting in the identification of 48 metabolites in plasma. Multivariate analyses using hierarchical clustering and principal component analysis revealed that the plasma metabolome in the fatigued group showed clear differences from those in the control and food-restricted groups. In the fatigued group, we found distinctive changes in metabolites related to branched-chain amino acid metabolism, urea cycle, and proline metabolism. Specifically, the fatigued group exhibited significant increases in valine, leucine, isoleucine, and 2-oxoisopentanoate, and significant decreases in citrulline and hydroxyproline compared with the control and food-restricted groups. Plasma levels of total nitric oxide were increased in the fatigued group, indicating systemic oxidative stress. Further, plasma metabolites involved in the citrate cycle, such as cis-aconitate and isocitrate, were reduced in the fatigued group. The levels of ATP were significantly decreased in the liver and skeletal muscle, indicative of a deterioration in energy metabolism in these organs. Thus, this comprehensive metabolic analysis furthered our understanding of the pathophysiology of fatigue, and identified potential diagnostic biomarkers based on fatigue pathophysiology. PMID

    7. Water Mites (Acari: Hydrachnida) of Ozark Streams - Abundance, Species Richness, and Potential as Environmental Indicators

      NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

      Radwell, A. J.; Brown, A. V.

      2005-05-01

      Because water mites are tightly linked to other stream metazoans through parasitism and predation, they are potentially effective indicators of environmental quality. Meiofauna (80 μm to 1 mm) were sampled from headwater riffles of 11 Ozark streams to determine relative abundance and densities of major meiofauna taxa. Water mites comprised 15.3% of the organisms collected exceeded only by chironomids (50.2%) and oligochaetes (17.8%), and mean water mite density among the 11 streams was 265 organisms per liter. The two streams that differed the most in environmental quality were sampled using techniques suitable for identification of species. An estimated 32 species from 20 genera and 13 families were found in the least disturbed stream; an estimated 19 species from 13 genera and 8 families were found in the most disturbed stream. This preliminary finding supports the notion that water mite species richness declines in response to environmental disturbance. Many species could only be identified as morphospecies of particular genera, but the ongoing taxonomic revision of Hydrachnida is expected to provide needed information. A collaborative effort between those interested in taxonomy/systematics of water mites and ecologists interested in the significance of water mites in aquatic communities could prove mutually beneficial.

    8. Bivalves as indicators of environmental variation and potential anthropogenic impacts in the southern Barents Sea

      PubMed Central

      Carroll, Michael L.; Johnson, Beverly J.; Henkes, Gregory A.; McMahon, Kelton W.; Voronkov, Andrey; Ambrose, William G.; Denisenko, Stanislav G.

      2009-01-01

      Identifying patterns and drivers of natural variability in populations is necessary to gauge potential effects of climatic change and the expected increases in commercial activities in the Arctic on communities and ecosystems. We analyzed growth rates and shell geochemistry of the circumpolar Greenland smooth cockle, Serripes groenlandicus, from the southern Barents Sea over almost 70 years between 1882 and 1968. The datasets were calibrated via annually-deposited growth lines, and growth, stable isotope (δ18O, δ13C), and trace elemental (Mg, Sr, Ba, Mn) patterns were linked to environmental variations on weekly to decadal scales. Standardized growth indices revealed an oscillatory growth pattern with a multi-year periodicity, which was inversely related to the North Atlantic Oscillation Index (NAO), and positively related to local river discharge. Up to 60% of the annual variability in the Ba/Ca could be explained by variations in river discharge at the site closest to the rivers, but the relationship disappeared at a more distant location. Patterns of δ18O, δ13C, and Sr/Ca together provide evidence that bivalve growth ceases at elevated temperatures during the fall and recommences at the coldest temperatures in the early spring, with the implication that food, rather than temperature, is the primary driver of bivalve growth. The multi-proxy approach of combining the annually integrated information from the growth results and higher resolution geochemical results yielded a robust interpretation of biophysical coupling in the region over temporal and spatial scales. We thus demonstrate that sclerochronological proxies can be useful retrospective analytical tools for establishing a baseline of ecosystem variability in assessing potential combined impacts of climatic change and increasing commercial activities on Arctic communities. PMID:19394657

    9. The identification of potential behavioural indicators of pain in periparturient sows.

      PubMed

      Ison, Sarah H; Jarvis, Susan; Rutherford, Kenneth M D

      2016-12-01

      Periparturient pain is a welfare concern and could contribute to piglet losses. This has led to studies investigating post-farrowing analgesia. A clear reduction in pain has not been demonstrated, partly due to a lack of pain indicators. This study quantified behaviours as potential pain indicators (PPIn) in sows: i) before, during and after farrowing, and ii) 2min before and after piglet births. Twenty-five sows were observed during and after, and ten pre-farrowing. Behaviour recorded included: 1) back leg forward (back leg pulled forward and/or in); 2) tremble (movement as if shivering); 3) back arch (leg(s) stretch forming an arched back); 4) paw (leg scraped in pawing motion); and 5) tail flick (tail moved rapidly up and down). Behaviours were analysed using generalized linear models and Spearman's rank correlations. All PPIn were rare or absent pre-farrowing, highest during farrowing, and back leg forward, tremble and back arch were greater in the early post-farrowing period. Several significant positive correlations between PPIn during and post-farrowing were found. Back arch, tail flick and paw were higher before than after a piglet birth, and were more frequent earlier in the birth order. Back leg forward and tremble did not differ before and after births, and tremble increased with birth order. These behaviours, which were absent or rare pre-farrowing, present during farrowing and were lower afterwards, and showed consistent individual variation, may be quantitatively associated with pain. Spontaneous behaviours could be used to test the efficacy of analgesics or identify sows that may benefit.

    10. Potentially Hazardous Co-orbiting Materials of Asteroid 138175 Identified by Interplanetary Field Enhancements

      NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

      Lai, Hairong; Russell, Christopher; Wei, Hanying; Delzanno, Gian Luca; Connors, Martin

      2014-05-01

      Interplanetary Field Enhancements (IFEs) were discovered almost 30 years ago in the PVO magnetic-field records. Our current understanding is that IFEs result from interactions between solar wind and clouds of nanometer-scale charged dust released in interplanetary collisions. These charged dust clouds are then accelerated by the solar wind and moving away from the Sun at near solar wind speed. This IFE formation hypothesis is supported by the discovery of co-orbiting materials associated with asteroid 2201 Oljato: IFE rate peaked when Oljato was close and IFE occurrence clustered in the longitudes near which the orbit of Oljato intersects the orbital plane of Venus. A followed up study with Venus Express observations suggested that the co-orbiting materials dissipated in 30 years At 1AU, based on ACE and Wind observations, IFEs have a significant cluster in the longitude range between 195° and 225°. Thus we use the same IFE technique to identify the 'parent' Near-Earth Objects of co-orbiting materials which should be responsible for those IFEs. There are more than 5000 JPL documented NEOs whose ecliptic plane crossings are near to or inside the Earth's orbit and whose orbital periods are less than five years. By comparing their trajectories, we find that the asteroid 138175 is a good candidate for the 'parent' body. This asteroid orbits the Sun in a 5.24° inclined elliptical orbit with a period of 367.96 days. Its descending node is at about 206°, where the IFE occurrence rate peaks. We also find that there is a spread of the IFE rate around the descending node, indicating that the co-orbiting materials have significant dispersion about the asteroid's orbit. The mass distribution of the associated IFEs indicates that most of the materials had a dimension of tens of meters before the collisions. Interplanetary objects in such size range are difficult to be identified by traditional surveys. Although asteroid 138175 itself has now been removed from the

    11. Which Anthropometric Indicators Identify a Pregnant Woman as Acutely Malnourished and Predict Adverse Birth Outcomes in the Humanitarian Context?

      PubMed Central

      Ververs, Mija-tesse; Antierens, Annick; Sackl, Anita; Staderini, Nelly; Captier, Valerie

      2013-01-01

      Currently there is no consensus on how to identify pregnant women as acutely malnourished and when to enroll them in nutritional programmes. Médecins Sans Frontières Switzerland undertook a literature review with the purpose of determining values of anthropometric indicators for acute malnutrition that are associated with adverse birth outcomes (such as low birth weight (LBW)), pre-term birth and intra-uterine growth retardation (IUGR). A literature search in PUBMED was done covering 1 January 1995 to 12 September 2012 with the key terms maternal anthropometry and pregnancy. The review focused on the humanitarian context. Mid-upper-arm circumference (MUAC) was identified as the preferential indicator of choice because of its relatively strong association with LBW, narrow range of cut-off values, simplicity of measurement (important in humanitarian settings) and it does not require prior knowledge of gestational age. The MUAC values below which most adverse effects were identified were <22 and <23 cm. A conservative cut-off of <23 cm is recommended to include most pregnant women at risk of LBW for their infants in the African and Asian contexts. PMID:23787989

    12. A Riemannian geometric mapping technique for identifying incompressible equivalents to subsonic potential flows

      NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

      German, Brian Joseph

      much the same way that general relativity ascribes gravitational forces to the curvature of space-time. Although the analogy with general relativity is fruitful, it is important not to overstate the similarities between compressibility and the physics of gravity, as the interest for this thesis is primarily in the mathematical framework and not physical phenomenology or epistemology. The thesis presents the philosophy and theory for the transformation method followed by a numerical method for practical solutions of equivalent incompressible flows over arbitrary closed profiles. The numerical method employs an iterative approach involving the solution of the equivalent incompressible flow with a panel method, the calculation of the metric tensor for the gauge transformation, and the solution of the curvilinear coordinate mapping to the canonical flow with a finite difference approach for the elliptic boundary value problem. This method is demonstrated for non-circulatory flow over a circular cylinder and both symmetric and lifting flows over a NACA 0012 profile. Results are validated with accepted subcritical full potential test cases available in the literature. For chord-preserving mapping boundary conditions, the results indicate that the equivalent incompressible profiles thicken with Mach number and develop a leading edge droop with increased angle of attack. Two promising areas of potential applicability of the method have been identified. The first is in airfoil inverse design methods leveraging incompressible flow knowledge including heuristics and empirical data for the potential field effects on viscous phenomena such as boundary layer transition and separation. The second is in aerodynamic testing using distorted similarity-scaled models.

    13. Evaluation of the Plot Method for Identifying Potentially Biased Test Items.

      ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

      Hambleton, Ronald K.; Rogers, H. Jane

      This report was designed to respond to two major methodological shortcomings in the item bias literature: (1) misfitting test models; and (2) the use of significance tests. Specifically, the goals of the research were to describe a newly developed method known as the "plot method" for identifying potentially biased test items and to…

    14. Leadership Succession in New South Wales Catholic Schools: Identifying Potential Principals.

      ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

      Dorman, Jeffrey P.; D'Arbon, Tony

      2003-01-01

      Reports on research conducted on leadership succession in New South Wales Catholic schools in order to identify potential principals using data collected from middle and senior management staff (n=943). Explains that short-term targeting of this population may be helpful, but impediments to leadership succession need to be addressed. (CMK)

    15. Optical redox ratio identifies metastatic potential-dependent changes in breast cancer cell metabolism

      PubMed Central

      Alhallak, Kinan; Rebello, Lisa G.; Muldoon, Timothy J.; Quinn, Kyle P.; Rajaram, Narasimhan

      2016-01-01

      The development of prognostic indicators of breast cancer metastatic risk could reduce the number of patients receiving chemotherapy for tumors with low metastatic potential. Recent evidence points to a critical role for cell metabolism in driving breast cancer metastasis. Endogenous fluorescence intensity of nicotinamide adenine dinucleotide (NADH) and flavin adenine dinucleotide (FAD) can provide a label-free method for assessing cell metabolism. We report the optical redox ratio of FAD/(FAD + NADH) of four isogenic triple-negative breast cancer cell lines with varying metastatic potential. Under normoxic conditions, the redox ratio increases with increasing metastatic potential (168FARN>4T07>4T1), indicating a shift to more oxidative metabolism in cells capable of metastasis. Reoxygenation following acute hypoxia increased the redox ratio by 43 ± 9% and 33 ± 4% in the 4T1 and 4T07 cells, respectively; in contrast, the redox ratio decreased 14 ± 7% in the non-metastatic 67NR cell line. These results demonstrate that the optical redox ratio is sensitive to the metabolic adaptability of breast cancer cells with high metastatic potential and could potentially be used to measure dynamic functional changes that are indicative of invasive or metastatic potential. PMID:27895979

    16. A spatial modeling approach to identify potential butternut restoration sites in Mammoth Cave National Park

      USGS Publications Warehouse

      Thompson, L.M.; Van Manen, F.T.; Schlarbaum, S.E.; DePoy, M.

      2006-01-01

      Incorporation of disease resistance is nearly complete for several important North American hardwood species threatened by exotic fungal diseases. The next important step toward species restoration would be to develop reliable tools to delineate ideal restoration sites on a landscape scale. We integrated spatial modeling and remote sensing techniques to delineate potential restoration sites for Butternut (Juglans cinerea L.) trees, a hardwood species being decimated by an exotic fungus, in Mammoth Cave National Park (MCNP), Kentucky. We first developed a multivariate habitat model to determine optimum Butternut habitats within MCNP. Habitat characteristics of 54 known Butternut locations were used in combination with eight topographic and land use data layers to calculate an index of habitat suitability based on Mahalanobis distance (D2). We used a bootstrapping technique to test the reliability of model predictions. Based on a threshold value for the D2 statistic, 75.9% of the Butternut locations were correctly classified, indicating that the habitat model performed well. Because Butternut seedlings require extensive amounts of sunlight to become established, we used canopy cover data to refine our delineation of favorable areas for Butternut restoration. Areas with the most favorable conditions to establish Butternut seedlings were limited to 291.6 ha. Our study provides a useful reference on the amount and location of favorable Butternut habitat in MCNP and can be used to identify priority areas for future Butternut restoration. Given the availability of relevant habitat layers and accurate location records, our approach can be applied to other tree species and areas. ?? 2006 Society for Ecological Restoration International.

    17. Bioorthogonal labeling cell-surface proteins expressed in pancreatic cancer cells to identify potential diagnostic/therapeutic biomarkers

      PubMed Central

      Haun, Randy S; Quick, Charles M; Siegel, Eric R; Raju, Ilangovan; Mackintosh, Samuel G; Tackett, Alan J

      2015-01-01

      To develop new diagnostic and therapeutic tools to specifically target pancreatic tumors, it is necessary to identify cell-surface proteins that may serve as potential tumor-specific targets. In this study we used an azido-labeled bioorthogonal chemical reporter to metabolically label N-linked glycoproteins on the surface of pancreatic cancer cell lines to identify potential targets that may be exploited for detection and/or treatment of pancreatic cancer. Labeled glycoproteins were tagged with biotin using click chemistry, purified by streptavidin-coupled magnetic beads, separated by gel electrophoresis, and identified by liquid chromatography-tandem mass spectrometry (MS). MS/MS analysis of peptides from 3 cell lines revealed 954 unique proteins enriched in the azido sugar samples relative to control sugar samples. A comparison of the proteins identified in each sample indicated 20% of these proteins were present in 2 cell lines (193 of 954) and 17 of the proteins were found in all 3 cell lines. Five of the 17 proteins identified in all 3 cell lines have not been previously reported to be expressed in pancreatic cancer; thus indicating that novel cell-surface proteins can be revealed through glycoprotein profiling. Western analysis of one of these glycoproteins, ecto-5′-nucleotidase (NT5E), revealed it is expressed in 8 out of 8 pancreatic cancer cell lines examined. Further, immunohistochemical analysis of human pancreatic tissues indicates NT5E is significantly overexpressed in pancreatic tumors compared to normal pancreas. Thus, we have demonstrated that metabolic labeling with bioorthogonal chemical reporters can be used to selectively enrich and identify novel cell-surface glycoproteins expressed in pancreatic ductal adenocarcinomas. PMID:26176765

    18. Anthropometric indices to identify metabolic syndrome and hypertriglyceridemic waist phenotype: a comparison between the three stages of adolescence

      PubMed Central

      Pereira, Patrícia Feliciano; de Faria, Franciane Rocha; de Faria, Eliane Rodrigues; Hermsdorff, Helen Hermana Miranda; Peluzio, Maria do Carmo Gouveia; Franceschini, Sylvia do Carmo Castro; Priore, Silvia Eloiza

      2015-01-01

      OBJECTIVE: To determine the prevalence of metabolic syndrome (MS) and the hypertriglyceridemic waist phenotype (HW) in a representative adolescent sample; as well as to establish which anthropometric indicator better identifies MS and HW, according to gender and adolescent age. METHODS: This cross sectional study had the participation of 800 adolescents (414 girls) from 10-19 years old. Anthropometric indicators (body mass index, waist perimeter, waist/stature ratio, waist/hip ratio, and central/peripheral skinfolds) were determined by standard protocols. For diagnosis of MS, the criteria proposed by de Ferranti et al. (2004) were used. HW was defined by the simultaneous presence of increased waist perimeter (>75th percentile for age and sex) and high triglycerides (>100 mg/dL). The ability of anthropometric indicators was evaluated by Receiver Operating Characteristic curve. RESULTS: The prevalence of MS was identical to HW (6.4%), without differences between genders and the adolescence phases. The waist perimeter showed higher area under the curve for the diagnosis of MS, except for boys with 17-19 years old, for whom the waist/stature ratio exhibited better performance. For diagnosing HW, waist perimeter also showed higher area under the curve, except for boys in initial and final phases, in which the waist/stature ratio obtained larger area under the curve. The central/peripheral skinfolds had the lowest area under the curve for the presence of both MS and HW phenotype. CONCLUSIONS: The waist perimeter and the waist/stature showed a better performance to identify MS and HW in both genders and in all three phases of adolescence. PMID:25913494

    19. Riverine threat indices to assess watershed condition and identify primary management capacity of agriculture natural resource management agencies.

      PubMed

      Fore, Jeffrey D; Sowa, Scott P; Galat, David L; Annis, Gust M; Diamond, David D; Rewa, Charles

      2014-03-01

      Managers can improve conservation of lotic systems over large geographies if they have tools to assess total watershed conditions for individual stream segments and can identify segments where conservation practices are most likely to be successful (i.e., primary management capacity). The goal of this research was to develop a suite of threat indices to help agriculture resource management agencies select and prioritize watersheds across Missouri River basin in which to implement agriculture conservation practices. We quantified watershed percentages or densities of 17 threat metrics that represent major sources of ecological stress to stream communities into five threat indices: agriculture, urban, point-source pollution, infrastructure, and all non-agriculture threats. We identified stream segments where agriculture management agencies had primary management capacity. Agriculture watershed condition differed by ecoregion and considerable local variation was observed among stream segments in ecoregions of high agriculture threats. Stream segments with high non-agriculture threats were most concentrated near urban areas, but showed high local variability. 60 % of stream segments in the basin were classified as under U.S. Department of Agriculture's Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) primary management capacity and most segments were in regions of high agricultural threats. NRCS primary management capacity was locally variable which highlights the importance of assessing total watershed condition for multiple threats. Our threat indices can be used by agriculture resource management agencies to prioritize conservation actions and investments based on: (a) relative severity of all threats, (b) relative severity of agricultural threats, and (c) and degree of primary management capacity.

    20. Potentially mineralizable nitrogen as a soil health indicator in a Long-Term Agroecosystem Research site

      Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

      Potentially mineralizable nitrogen (PMN) has demonstrated utility as a valuable soil health indicator. However, the relationship between the total PMN pool and nitrogen mineralization rates has not been well described. A better understanding of PMN dynamics in agroecosystems is essential for optimiz...

    1. Scientific Research in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia: Potential for Excellence and Indicators of Underdevelopment

      ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

      Alshayea, Ali

      2013-01-01

      This study analyzes the status of scientific research and development efforts in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, and then sheds lights on the potential for excellence in this area in terms of organization and structure, financing and partnership, and human resources. Accordingly, the study reviews both achievements and indicators of underdevelopment…

    2. Indications and potential sources of change in sand transport in the Brazos River, Texas

      USGS Publications Warehouse

      Dunn, David D.; Raines, Timothy H.

      2001-01-01

      Changes in the capacity of the Brazos River to transport sand can be identified within the context of Lane’s relation through changes in channel geometry, changes in the characteristics of suspended loads, and changes in discharge. The Brazos River channel has been undergoing continual adjustment since the 1940s. For a discharge of 5,000 cubic feet per second, the watersurface altitude has decreased 2 to 4 feet at the Hempstead and Richmond streamflow-gaging stations between 1940 and 1995. The characteristics of suspended-sediment samples at the Richmond streamflow-gaging station have changed between the periods 1969–81 and 1982– 95. The amount of sand-size sediment transported in suspension has decreased. The distribution of both daily and annual-peak discharges has changed. However, the computed annual loads of suspended sand indicate no statistically significant change in the median annual load.The transport of sand in the Brazos River depends on a complex set of factors, most of which are continually changing. Potential sources of change in sand transport in the Brazos River include the effects of reservoir construction, changes in land use, and instream sand and gravel mining. Extensive reservoir construction in the Brazos River Basin has reduced sand transport by trapping sediment and by reducing the magnitude of peak discharges. However, reductions in sand transport associated with reservoir construction apparently are compensated for by increases associated with tributary sediment inflow and localized bank erosion. The total area of harvested acres of non-hay crops in the lower Brazos River Basin during 1924–92 decreased more than 75 percent from about 32 percent to about 8 percent of the total area. Correspondingly, erosion potential has decreased substantially. Several sand and gravel mining sites are located on the Brazos River between Hempstead and Rosharon. The quantity of sediment extracted by instream sand and gravel mining operations could

    3. Structured methods for identifying and correcting potential human errors in aviation operations

      SciTech Connect

      Nelson, W.R.

      1997-10-01

      Human errors have been identified as the source of approximately 60% of the incidents and accidents that occur in commercial aviation. It can be assumed that a very large number of human errors occur in aviation operations, even though in most cases the redundancies and diversities built into the design of aircraft systems prevent the errors from leading to serious consequences. In addition, when it is acknowledged that many system failures have their roots in human errors that occur in the design phase, it becomes apparent that the identification and elimination of potential human errors could significantly decrease the risks of aviation operations. This will become even more critical during the design of advanced automation-based aircraft systems as well as next-generation systems for air traffic management. Structured methods to identify and correct potential human errors in aviation operations have been developed and are currently undergoing testing at the Idaho National Engineering and Environmental Laboratory (INEEL).

    4. Searching for Information Online: Using Big Data to Identify the Concerns of Potential Army Recruits

      DTIC Science & Technology

      2016-01-01

      personally sensitive or identifiable information. Other necessary capabili- ties include front-end tools that allow analysts to interact with data...search data available to the public; this offers several advantages. The aggre- gated data contains no personal information at all, potentially...and suggestions for similar searches that are popular, Stephens- Davidowitz (2014b) found that pregnant women across the world searched for such

    5. A Topology Potential-Based Method for Identifying Essential Proteins from PPI Networks.

      PubMed

      Li, Min; Lu, Yu; Wang, Jianxin; Wu, Fang-Xiang; Pan, Yi

      2015-01-01

      Essential proteins are indispensable for cellular life. It is of great significance to identify essential proteins that can help us understand the minimal requirements for cellular life and is also very important for drug design. However, identification of essential proteins based on experimental approaches are typically time-consuming and expensive. With the development of high-throughput technology in the post-genomic era, more and more protein-protein interaction data can be obtained, which make it possible to study essential proteins from the network level. There have been a series of computational approaches proposed for predicting essential proteins based on network topologies. Most of these topology based essential protein discovery methods were to use network centralities. In this paper, we investigate the essential proteins' topological characters from a completely new perspective. To our knowledge it is the first time that topology potential is used to identify essential proteins from a protein-protein interaction (PPI) network. The basic idea is that each protein in the network can be viewed as a material particle which creates a potential field around itself and the interaction of all proteins forms a topological field over the network. By defining and computing the value of each protein's topology potential, we can obtain a more precise ranking which reflects the importance of proteins from the PPI network. The experimental results show that topology potential-based methods TP and TP-NC outperform traditional topology measures: degree centrality (DC), betweenness centrality (BC), closeness centrality (CC), subgraph centrality (SC), eigenvector centrality (EC), information centrality (IC), and network centrality (NC) for predicting essential proteins. In addition, these centrality measures are improved on their performance for identifying essential proteins in biological network when controlled by topology potential.

    6. Potential ligand-binding residues in rat olfactory receptors identified by correlated mutation analysis

      NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

      Singer, M. S.; Oliveira, L.; Vriend, G.; Shepherd, G. M.

      1995-01-01

      A family of G-protein-coupled receptors is believed to mediate the recognition of odor molecules. In order to identify potential ligand-binding residues, we have applied correlated mutation analysis to receptor sequences from the rat. This method identifies pairs of sequence positions where residues remain conserved or mutate in tandem, thereby suggesting structural or functional importance. The analysis supported molecular modeling studies in suggesting several residues in positions that were consistent with ligand-binding function. Two of these positions, dominated by histidine residues, may play important roles in ligand binding and could confer broad specificity to mammalian odor receptors. The presence of positive (overdominant) selection at some of the identified positions provides additional evidence for roles in ligand binding. Higher-order groups of correlated residues were also observed. Each group may interact with an individual ligand determinant, and combinations of these groups may provide a multi-dimensional mechanism for receptor diversity.

    7. Evaluating the Potential Usefulness of new Hurricane Indices for Emergency Management and Other Decision Makers

      NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

      Jordan, M. R.; Clayson, C. A.

      2006-12-01

      Over the past 35 years, the Saffir-Simpson scale has used wind speed as a means for categorizing damage and surge risks associated with hurricanes. Time has shown, however, that hurricanes with the same wind speed do not necessarily cause equal damage values and storm-surge heights. Therefore, it is prudent to now consider a different method for categorizing storms so that emergency management officials in a coastal location can have a better idea as to the potential hazards posed by a particular hurricane. Recognizing this need, three new indices were developed by Lakshmi Kantha in 2005 for evaluating hurricane intensity, hurricane damage potential, and hurricane surge potential. This paper applies these indices to a twenty-year database (1986-2005) of Atlantic, U.S.-landfalling hurricanes and compares the relative indices to known damage estimates and surge heights. Some general conclusions will be made regarding the possible usefulness of these indices for emergency management officials in areas prone to landfalling tropical cyclones.

    8. A realistic assessment of the indicator potential of butterflies and other charismatic taxonomic groups.

      PubMed

      Fleishman, Erica; Murphy, Dennis D

      2009-10-01

      Charismatic groups of animals and plants often are proposed as sentinels of environmental status and trends. Nevertheless, many claims that a certain taxonomic group can provide more-general information on environmental quality are not evaluated critically. To address several of the many definitions of indicator species, we used butterflies to explore in some detail the attributes that affect implementation of indicators generically. There probably are few individual species, or sets of species, that can serve as scientifically valid, cost-effective measures of the status or trend of an environmental phenomenon that is difficult to measure directly. Nevertheless, there are species with distributions, abundances, or demographic characteristics that are responsive to known environmental changes. In this context, single or multiple species can serve as indicators when targets are defined explicitly, ecological relationships between the target and the putative indicators are well understood, and data are sufficient to differentiate between deterministic and stochastic responses. Although these situations exist, they are less common than might be apparent from an extensive and often confounded literature on indicators. Instead, the public appeal of charismatic groups may be driving much of their acclaim as indicators. The same taxon may not be appropriate for marketing a general conservation mission and for drawing strong inference about specific environmental changes. To provide insights into the progress of conservation efforts, it is essential to identify scientific and practical criteria for selection and application of indicators and then to examine whether a given taxonomic group meets those criteria.

    9. Exome sequencing of hepatocellular carcinomas identifies new mutational signatures and potential therapeutic targets.

      PubMed

      Schulze, Kornelius; Imbeaud, Sandrine; Letouzé, Eric; Alexandrov, Ludmil B; Calderaro, Julien; Rebouissou, Sandra; Couchy, Gabrielle; Meiller, Clément; Shinde, Jayendra; Soysouvanh, Frederic; Calatayud, Anna-Line; Pinyol, Roser; Pelletier, Laura; Balabaud, Charles; Laurent, Alexis; Blanc, Jean-Frederic; Mazzaferro, Vincenzo; Calvo, Fabien; Villanueva, Augusto; Nault, Jean-Charles; Bioulac-Sage, Paulette; Stratton, Michael R; Llovet, Josep M; Zucman-Rossi, Jessica

      2015-05-01

      Genomic analyses promise to improve tumor characterization to optimize personalized treatment for patients with hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC). Exome sequencing analysis of 243 liver tumors identified mutational signatures associated with specific risk factors, mainly combined alcohol and tobacco consumption and exposure to aflatoxin B1. We identified 161 putative driver genes associated with 11 recurrently altered pathways. Associations of mutations defined 3 groups of genes related to risk factors and centered on CTNNB1 (alcohol), TP53 (hepatitis B virus, HBV) and AXIN1. Analyses according to tumor stage progression identified TERT promoter mutation as an early event, whereas FGF3, FGF4, FGF19 or CCND1 amplification and TP53 and CDKN2A alterations appeared at more advanced stages in aggressive tumors. In 28% of the tumors, we identified genetic alterations potentially targetable by US Food and Drug Administration (FDA)-approved drugs. In conclusion, we identified risk factor-specific mutational signatures and defined the extensive landscape of altered genes and pathways in HCC, which will be useful to design clinical trials for targeted therapy.

    10. Exome sequencing of hepatocellular carcinomas identifies new mutational signatures and potential therapeutic targets

      SciTech Connect

      Schulze, Kornelius; Imbeaud, Sandrine; Letouzé, Eric; Alexandrov, Ludmil B.; Calderaro, Julien; Rebouissou, Sandra; Couchy, Gabrielle; Meiller, Clément; Shinde, Jayendra; Soysouvanh, Frederic; Calatayud, Anna-Line; Pinyol, Roser; Pelletier, Laura; Balabaud, Charles; Laurent, Alexis; Blanc, Jean-Frederic; Mazzaferro, Vincenzo; Calvo, Fabien; Villanueva, Augusto; Nault, Jean-Charles; Bioulac-Sage, Paulette; Stratton, Michael R.; Llovet, Josep M.; Zucman-Rossi, Jessica

      2015-03-30

      Our genomic analyses promise to improve tumor characterization to optimize personalized treatment for patients with hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC). Exome sequencing analysis of 243 liver tumors identified mutational signatures associated with specific risk factors, mainly combined alcohol and tobacco consumption and exposure to aflatoxin B1. We identified 161 putative driver genes associated with 11 recurrently altered pathways. Associations of mutations defined 3 groups of genes related to risk factors and centered on CTNNB1 (alcohol), TP53 (hepatitis B virus, HBV) and AXIN1. These analyses according to tumor stage progression identified TERT promoter mutation as an early event, whereasFGF3, FGF4, FGF19 or CCND1 amplification and TP53 and CDKN2A alterations appeared at more advanced stages in aggressive tumors. In 28% of the tumors, we identified genetic alterations potentially targetable by US Food and Drug Administration (FDA)–approved drugs. Finally, we identified risk factor–specific mutational signatures and defined the extensive landscape of altered genes and pathways in HCC, which will be useful to design clinical trials for targeted therapy.

    11. Exome sequencing of hepatocellular carcinomas identifies new mutational signatures and potential therapeutic targets

      DOE PAGES

      Schulze, Kornelius; Imbeaud, Sandrine; Letouzé, Eric; ...

      2015-03-30

      Our genomic analyses promise to improve tumor characterization to optimize personalized treatment for patients with hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC). Exome sequencing analysis of 243 liver tumors identified mutational signatures associated with specific risk factors, mainly combined alcohol and tobacco consumption and exposure to aflatoxin B1. We identified 161 putative driver genes associated with 11 recurrently altered pathways. Associations of mutations defined 3 groups of genes related to risk factors and centered on CTNNB1 (alcohol), TP53 (hepatitis B virus, HBV) and AXIN1. These analyses according to tumor stage progression identified TERT promoter mutation as an early event, whereasFGF3, FGF4, FGF19 or CCND1more » amplification and TP53 and CDKN2A alterations appeared at more advanced stages in aggressive tumors. In 28% of the tumors, we identified genetic alterations potentially targetable by US Food and Drug Administration (FDA)–approved drugs. Finally, we identified risk factor–specific mutational signatures and defined the extensive landscape of altered genes and pathways in HCC, which will be useful to design clinical trials for targeted therapy.« less

    12. The dissolved organic matter as a potential soil quality indicator in arable soils of Hungary.

      PubMed

      Filep, Tibor; Draskovits, Eszter; Szabó, József; Koós, Sándor; László, Péter; Szalai, Zoltán

      2015-07-01

      Although several authors have suggested that the labile fraction of soils could be a potential soil quality indicator, the possibilities and limitations of using the dissolved organic matter (DOM) fraction for this purpose have not yet been investigated. The objective of this study was to evaluate the hypothesis that DOM is an adequate indicator of soil quality. To test this, the soil quality indices (SQI) of 190 arable soils from a Hungarian dataset were estimated, and these values were compared to DOM parameters (DOC and SUVA254). A clear difference in soil quality was found between the soil types, with low soil quality for arenosols (average SQI 0.5) and significantly higher values for gleysols, vertisols, regosols, solonetzes and chernozems. The SQI-DOC relationship could be described by non-linear regression, while a linear connection was observed between SQI and SUVA. The regression equations obtained for the dataset showed only one relatively weak significant correlation between the variables, for DOC (R (2) = 0.157(***); n = 190), while non-significant relationships were found for the DOC and SUVA254 values. However, an envelope curve operated with the datasets showed the robust potential of DOC to indicate soil quality changes, with a high R (2) value for the envelope curve regression equation. The limitations to using the DOM fraction of soils as a quality indicator are due to the contradictory processes which take place in soils in many cases.

    13. Potential for diamond in kimberlites from Michigan and Montana as indicated by garnet xenocryst compositions

      USGS Publications Warehouse

      McGee, E.S.

      1988-01-01

      The Williams kimberlite in north-central Montana and the Lake Ellen kimberlite in northern Michigan contain diagnostic xenoliths and xenocrysts which indicate that diamonds may be present. To date, however, no diamonds have been reported from either locality. In this study, particular compositions of garnet xenocrysts which are associated with diamond elsewhere were sought as an indication of the potential for diamond in the Williams and Lake Ellen kimberlites. For this study, garnets were carefully selected for purple color in order to increase the chance of finding the subcalcic chrome-rich compositions that are associated with the presence of diamond. -Author

    14. A genomic strategy for the functional validation of colorectal cancer genes identifies potential therapeutic targets.

      PubMed

      Grade, Marian; Hummon, Amanda B; Camps, Jordi; Emons, Georg; Spitzner, Melanie; Gaedcke, Jochen; Hoermann, Patrick; Ebner, Reinhard; Becker, Heinz; Difilippantonio, Michael J; Ghadimi, B Michael; Beissbarth, Tim; Caplen, Natasha J; Ried, Thomas

      2011-03-01

      Genes that are highly overexpressed in tumor cells can be required for tumor cell survival and have the potential to be selective therapeutic targets. In an attempt to identify such targets, we combined a functional genomics and a systems biology approach to assess the consequences of RNAi-mediated silencing of overexpressed genes that were selected from 140 gene expression profiles from colorectal cancers (CRCs) and matched normal mucosa. In order to identify credible models for in-depth functional analysis, we first confirmed the overexpression of these genes in 25 different CRC cell lines. We then identified five candidate genes that profoundly reduced the viability of CRC cell lines when silenced with either siRNAs or short-hairpin RNAs (shRNAs), i.e., HMGA1, TACSTD2, RRM2, RPS2 and NOL5A. These genes were further studied by systematic analysis of comprehensive gene expression profiles generated following siRNA-mediated silencing. Exploration of these RNAi-specific gene expression signatures allowed the identification of the functional space in which the five genes operate and showed enrichment for cancer-specific signaling pathways, some known to be involved in CRC. By comparing the expression of the RNAi signature genes with their respective expression levels in an independent set of primary rectal carcinomas, we could recapitulate these defined RNAi signatures, therefore, establishing the biological relevance of our observations. This strategy identified the signaling pathways that are affected by the prominent oncogenes HMGA1 and TACSTD2, established a yet unknown link between RRM2 and PLK1 and identified RPS2 and NOL5A as promising potential therapeutic targets in CRC.

    15. Deep sequencing identifies viral and wasp genes with potential roles in replication of Microplitis demolitor Bracovirus.

      PubMed

      Burke, Gaelen R; Strand, Michael R

      2012-03-01

      Viruses in the genus Bracovirus (BV) (Polydnaviridae) are symbionts of parasitoid wasps that specifically replicate in the ovaries of females. Recent analysis of expressed sequence tags from two wasp species, Cotesia congregata and Chelonus inanitus, identified transcripts related to 24 different nudivirus genes. These results together with other data strongly indicate that BVs evolved from a nudivirus ancestor. However, it remains unclear whether BV-carrying wasps contain other nudivirus-like genes and what types of wasp genes may also be required for BV replication. Microplitis demolitor carries Microplitis demolitor bracovirus (MdBV). Here we characterized MdBV replication and performed massively parallel sequencing of M. demolitor ovary transcripts. Our results indicated that MdBV replication begins in stage 2 pupae and continues in adults. Analysis of prereplication- and active-replication-stage ovary RNAs yielded 22 Gb of sequence that assembled into 66,425 transcripts. This breadth of sampling indicated that a large percentage of genes in the M. demolitor genome were sequenced. A total of 41 nudivirus-like transcripts were identified, of which a majority were highly expressed during MdBV replication. Our results also identified a suite of wasp genes that were highly expressed during MdBV replication. Among these products were several transcripts with conserved roles in regulating locus-specific DNA amplification by eukaryotes. Overall, our data set together with prior results likely identify the majority of nudivirus-related genes that are transcriptionally functional during BV replication. Our results also suggest that amplification of proviral DNAs for packaging into BV virions may depend upon the replication machinery of wasps.

    16. Integrative exploration of genomic profiles for triple negative breast cancer identifies potential drug targets

      PubMed Central

      Wang, Xiaosheng; Guda, Chittibabu

      2016-01-01

      Abstract Background: Triple negative breast cancer (TNBC) is high-risk due to its rapid drug resistance and recurrence, metastasis, and lack of targeted therapy. So far, no molecularly targeted therapeutic agents have been clinically approved for TNBC. It is imperative that we discover new targets for TNBC therapy. Objectives: A large volume of cancer genomics data are emerging and advancing breast cancer research. We may integrate different types of TNBC genomic data to discover molecular targets for TNBC therapy. Data sources: We used publicly available TNBC tumor tissue genomic data in the Cancer Genome Atlas database in this study. Methods: We integratively explored genomic profiles (gene expression, copy number, methylation, microRNA [miRNA], and gene mutation) in TNBC and identified hyperactivated genes that have higher expression, more copy numbers, lower methylation level, or are targets of miRNAs with lower expression in TNBC than in normal samples. We ranked the hyperactivated genes into different levels based on all the genomic evidence and performed functional analyses of the sets of genes identified. More importantly, we proposed potential molecular targets for TNBC therapy based on the hyperactivated genes. Results: Some of the genes we identified such as FGFR2, MAPK13, TP53, SRC family, MUC family, and BCL2 family have been suggested to be potential targets for TNBC treatment. Others such as CSF1R, EPHB3, TRIB1, and LAD1 could be promising new targets for TNBC treatment. By utilizing this integrative analysis of genomic profiles for TNBC, we hypothesized that some of the targeted treatment strategies for TNBC currently in development are more likely to be promising, such as poly (ADP-ribose) polymerase inhibitors, while the others are more likely to be discouraging, such as angiogenesis inhibitors. Limitations: The findings in this study need to be experimentally validated in the future. Conclusion: This is a systematic study that combined 5

    17. Intraoperative radiotherapy in early stage breast cancer: potential indications and evidence to date

      PubMed Central

      Kirby, A M

      2015-01-01

      Following early results of recent studies of intraoperative radiotherapy (IORT) in the adjuvant treatment of patients with early breast cancer, the clinical utility of IORT is a subject of much recent debate within the breast oncology community. This review describes the intraoperative techniques available, the potential indications and the evidence to date pertaining to local control and toxicity. We also discuss any implications for current practice and future research. PMID:25734489

    18. Using high frequency consumption data to identify demand response potential for solar energy integration

      NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

      Jin, L.; Borgeson, S.; Fredman, D.; Hans, L.; Spurlock, A.; Todd, A.

      2015-12-01

      California's renewable portfolio standard (2012) requires the state to get 33% of its electricity from renewable sources by 2020. Increased share of variable renewable sources such as solar and wind in the California electricity system may require more grid flexibility to insure reliable power services. Such grid flexibility can be potentially provided by changes in end use electricity consumptions in response to grid conditions (demand-response). In the solar case, residential consumption in the late afternoon can be used as reserve capacity to balance the drop in solar generation. This study presents our initial attempt to identify, from a behavior perspective, residential demand response potentials in relation to solar ramp events using a data-driven approach. Based on hourly residential energy consumption data, we derive representative daily load shapes focusing on discretionary consumption with an innovative clustering analysis technique. We aggregate the representative load shapes into behavior groups in terms of the timing and rhythm of energy use in the context of solar ramp events. Households of different behavior groups that are active during hours with high solar ramp rates are identified for capturing demand response potential. Insights into the nature and predictability of response to demand-response programs are provided.

    19. An Indicator of Solid Waste Generation Potential for Illinois Using Principal Components Analysis and Geographic Information Systems.

      PubMed

      Dallas, M D; Kerzee, R G; Bing-Canar, J; Mensah, E K; Oroke, K G; Swager, R R

      1996-05-01

      An indicator of solid waste generation potential (SWGP) is proposed as a versatile means to assist the development of integrated solid waste (SW) management plans. The proposed indicator is based on key sodoeconomic variables for the State of Illinois which were found to be highly correlated with variables describing the SW stream of the State. The proposed indicator was derived by applying the principal components analysis (PCA) technique. The technique is used to merge the rank transformed socioeconomic variables into a single variable, the SWGP indicator, while maintaining the regional information of the original variables. An innovative aspect of this indicator approach is the use of the ordinal scale for all these diverse variables. The validity of this approach was assessed and the proposed indicator was found to be directly proportional to a composite variable describing the SW stream for the State of Illinois. The use of Geographic Information Systems (GIS) to depict the spatial distribution of the SWGP will help planners visualize the expected overall refuse generation pattern and to identify critical regions. In addition, the proposed indicator could be used as an instrument to validate the solid waste generation (SWG) quantities reported by counties to state agencies.

    20. The Potential for Spatial Distribution Indices to Signal Thresholds in Marine Fish Biomass

      PubMed Central

      Reuchlin-Hugenholtz, Emilie

      2015-01-01

      The frequently observed positive relationship between fish population abundance and spatial distribution suggests that changes in distribution can be indicative of trends in abundance. If contractions in spatial distribution precede declines in spawning stock biomass (SSB), spatial distribution reference points could complement the SSB reference points that are commonly used in marine conservation biology and fisheries management. When relevant spatial distribution information is integrated into fisheries management and recovery plans, risks and uncertainties associated with a plan based solely on the SSB criterion would be reduced. To assess the added value of spatial distribution data, we examine the relationship between SSB and four metrics of spatial distribution intended to reflect changes in population range, concentration, and density for 10 demersal populations (9 species) inhabiting the Scotian Shelf, Northwest Atlantic. Our primary purpose is to assess their potential to serve as indices of SSB, using fisheries independent survey data. We find that metrics of density offer the best correlate of spawner biomass. A decline in the frequency of encountering high density areas is associated with, and in a few cases preceded by, rapid declines in SSB in 6 of 10 populations. Density-based indices have considerable potential to serve both as an indicator of SSB and as spatially based reference points in fisheries management. PMID:25789624

    1. Hydrologic indicators of hot spots and hot moments of mercury methylation potential along river corridors

      USGS Publications Warehouse

      Singer, Michael B.; Harrison, Lee R.; Donovan, Patrick M.; Blum, Joel D.; Marvin-DiPasquale, Mark C.

      2016-01-01

      The biogeochemical cycling of metals and other contaminants in river-floodplain corridors is controlled by microbial activity responding to dynamic redox conditions. Riverine flooding thus has the potential to affect speciation of redox-sensitive metals such as mercury (Hg). Therefore, inundation history over a period of decades potentially holds information on past production of bioavailable Hg. We investigate this within a Northern California river system with a legacy of landscape-scale 19th century hydraulic gold mining. We combine hydraulic modeling, Hg measurements in sediment and biota, and first-order calculations of mercury transformation to assess the potential role of river floodplains in producing monomethylmercury (MMHg), a neurotoxin which accumulates in local and migratory food webs. We identify frequently inundated floodplain areas, as well as floodplain areas inundated for long periods. We quantify the probability of MMHg production potential (MPP) associated with hydrology in each sector of the river system as a function of the spatial patterns of overbank inundation and drainage, which affect long-term redox history of contaminated sediments. Our findings identify river floodplains as periodic, temporary, yet potentially important, loci of biogeochemical transformation in which contaminants may undergo change during limited periods of the hydrologic record. We suggest that inundation is an important driver of MPP in river corridors and that the entire flow history must be analyzed retrospectively in terms of inundation magnitude and frequency in order to accurately assess biogeochemical risks, rather than merely highlighting the largest floods or low-flow periods. MMHg bioaccumulation within the aquatic food web in this system may pose a major risk to humans and waterfowl that eat migratory salmonids, which are being encouraged to come up these rivers to spawn. There is a long-term pattern of MPP under the current flow regime that is likely to be

    2. Hydrologic indicators of hot spots and hot moments of mercury methylation potential along river corridors.

      PubMed

      Singer, Michael Bliss; Harrison, Lee R; Donovan, Patrick M; Blum, Joel D; Marvin-DiPasquale, Mark

      2016-10-15

      The biogeochemical cycling of metals and other contaminants in river-floodplain corridors is controlled by microbial activity responding to dynamic redox conditions. Riverine flooding thus has the potential to affect speciation of redox-sensitive metals such as mercury (Hg). Therefore, inundation history over a period of decades potentially holds information on past production of bioavailable Hg. We investigate this within a Northern California river system with a legacy of landscape-scale 19th century hydraulic gold mining. We combine hydraulic modeling, Hg measurements in sediment and biota, and first-order calculations of mercury transformation to assess the potential role of river floodplains in producing monomethylmercury (MMHg), a neurotoxin which accumulates in local and migratory food webs. We identify frequently inundated floodplain areas, as well as floodplain areas inundated for long periods. We quantify the probability of MMHg production potential (MPP) associated with hydrology in each sector of the river system as a function of the spatial patterns of overbank inundation and drainage, which affect long-term redox history of contaminated sediments. Our findings identify river floodplains as periodic, temporary, yet potentially important, loci of biogeochemical transformation in which contaminants may undergo change during limited periods of the hydrologic record. We suggest that inundation is an important driver of MPP in river corridors and that the entire flow history must be analyzed retrospectively in terms of inundation magnitude and frequency in order to accurately assess biogeochemical risks, rather than merely highlighting the largest floods or low-flow periods. MMHg bioaccumulation within the aquatic food web in this system may pose a major risk to humans and waterfowl that eat migratory salmonids, which are being encouraged to come up these rivers to spawn. There is a long-term pattern of MPP under the current flow regime that is likely to be

    3. Triangulation of the human, chimpanzee, and Neanderthal genome sequences identifies potentially compensated mutations.

      PubMed

      Zhang, Guojie; Pei, Zhang; Krawczak, Michael; Ball, Edward V; Mort, Matthew; Kehrer-Sawatzki, Hildegard; Cooper, David N

      2010-12-01

      Triangulation of the human, chimpanzee, and Neanderthal genome sequences with respect to 44,348 disease-causing or disease-associated missense mutations and 1,712 putative regulatory mutations listed in the Human Gene Mutation Database was employed to identify genetic variants that are apparently pathogenic in humans but which may represent a "compensated" wild-type state in at least one of the other two species. Of 122 such "potentially compensated mutations" (PCMs) identified, 88 were deemed "ancestral" on the basis that the reported wild-type Neanderthal nucleotide was identical to that of the chimpanzee. Another 33 PCMs were deemed to be "derived" in that the Neanderthal wild-type nucleotide matched the human but not the chimpanzee wild-type. For the remaining PCM, all three wild-type states were found to differ. Whereas a derived PCM would require compensation only in the chimpanzee, ancestral PCMs are useful as a means to identify sites of possible adaptive differences between modern humans on the one hand, and Neanderthals and chimpanzees on the other. Ancestral PCMs considered to be disease-causing in humans were identified in two Neanderthal genes (DUOX2, MAMLD1). Because the underlying mutations are known to give rise to recessive conditions in human, it is possible that they may also have been of pathological significance in Neanderthals. Hum Mutat 31:1-8, 2010. © 2010 Wiley-Liss, Inc.

    4. Using Helicopter Electromagnetic Surveys to Identify Potential Hazards at Mine Waste Impoundments

      SciTech Connect

      Hammack, R.W.

      2008-01-01

      In July 2003, helicopter electromagnetic surveys were conducted at 14 coal waste impoundments in southern West Virginia. The purpose of the surveys was to detect conditions that could lead to impoundment failure either by structural failure of the embankment or by the flooding of adjacent or underlying mine works. Specifically, the surveys attempted to: 1) identify saturated zones within the mine waste, 2) delineate filtrate flow paths through the embankment or into adjacent strata and receiving streams, and 3) identify flooded mine workings underlying or adjacent to the waste impoundment. Data from the helicopter surveys were processed to generate conductivity/depth images. Conductivity/depth images were then spatially linked to georeferenced air photos or topographic maps for interpretation. Conductivity/depth images were found to provide a snapshot of the hydrologic conditions that exist within the impoundment. This information can be used to predict potential areas of failure within the embankment because of its ability to image the phreatic zone. Also, the electromagnetic survey can identify areas of unconsolidated slurry in the decant basin and beneath the embankment. Although shallow, flooded mineworks beneath the impoundment were identified by this survey, it cannot be assumed that electromagnetic surveys can detect all underlying mines. A preliminary evaluation of the data implies that helicopter electromagnetic surveys can provide a better understanding of the phreatic zone than the piezometer arrays that are typically used.

    5. The indicator amino acid oxidation method identified limiting amino acids in two parenteral nutrition solutions in neonatal piglets.

      PubMed

      Brunton, Janet A; Shoveller, Anna K; Pencharz, Paul B; Ball, Ronald O

      2007-05-01

      Recent studies using the indicator amino acid oxidation (IAAO) technique in TPN-fed piglets and infants have been instrumental in defining parenteral amino acid requirements. None of the commercial products in use are ideal when assessed against these new data. Our objectives were to determine whether the oxidation of an indicator amino acid would decline with the addition of amino acids that were limiting in the diets of TPN-fed piglets, and to use this technique to identify limiting amino acids in a new amino acid profile. Piglets (n = 26) were randomized to receive TPN with amino acids provided by Vaminolact (VM) or by a new profile (NP). After 5 d of TPN administration, lysine oxidation was measured using a constant infusion of L- [1-(14)C]-lysine. Immediately following the first IAAO study, the piglets were further randomized within diet group to receive either 1) supplemental aromatic amino acids (AAA), 2) sulfur amino acids (SAA) or 3) both (AAA+SAA) (n = 4-5 per treatment group). A second IAAO study was carried out 18 h later. In the first IAAO study, lysine oxidation was high for both groups (18 vs. 21% for VM and NP, respectively, P = 0.055). The addition of AAA to VM induced a 30% decline in lysine oxidation compared with baseline (P < 0.01). Similarly, SAA added to NP lowered lysine oxidation by approximately 30% (P < 0.01). The application of the IAAO technique facilitates rapid evaluation of the amino acids that are limiting to protein synthesis in parenteral solutions.

    6. An event-related potential paradigm for identifying (rare negative) attitude stimuli that people intentionally misreport.

      PubMed

      Crites, Stephen L; Mojica, Andrew J; Corral, Guadalupe; Taylor, Jennifer H

      2010-09-01

      This experiment explored whether a late positive potential (LPP) of the event-related brain potential is useful for examining attitudes that people attempt to conceal. Participants identified a set of liked, neutral, and disliked people and viewed sequences consisting of either names or pictures of these people. Disliked people appeared rarely among liked people, and participants either: (1) always accurately reported their negative attitudes toward the people; (2) misreported negative attitudes as positive when they saw a picture of a disliked person; or (3) misreported negative attitudes as positive when they saw a name of a disliked person. Rare negative stimuli evoked a larger-amplitude LPP than frequent positive stimuli. Misreporting attitudes significantly reduced the amplitude difference between rare negative and frequent positive stimuli, though it remained significant.

    7. Genetic studies of plasma analytes identify novel potential biomarkers for several complex traits

      PubMed Central

      Deming, Yuetiva; Xia, Jian; Cai, Yefei; Lord, Jenny; Del-Aguila, Jorge L.; Fernandez, Maria Victoria; Carrell, David; Black, Kathleen; Budde, John; Ma, ShengMei; Saef, Benjamin; Howells, Bill; Bertelsen, Sarah; Bailey, Matthew; Ridge, Perry G.; Hefti, Franz; Fillit, Howard; Zimmerman, Earl A.; Celmins, Dzintra; Brown, Alice D.; Carrillo, Maria; Fleisher, Adam; Reeder, Stephanie; Trncic, Nadira; Burke, Anna; Tariot, Pierre; Reiman, Eric M.; Chen, Kewei; Sabbagh, Marwan N.; Beiden, Christine M.; Jacobson, Sandra A.; Sirrel, Sherye A.; Doody, Rachelle S.; Villanueva-Meyer, Javier; Chowdhury, Munir; Rountree, Susan; Dang, Mimi; Kowall, Neil; Killiany, Ronald; Budson, Andrew E.; Norbash, Alexander; Johnson, Patricia Lynn; Green, Robert C.; Marshall, Gad; Johnson, Keith A.; Sperling, Reisa A.; Snyder, Peter; Salloway, Stephen; Malloy, Paul; Correia, Stephen; Bernick, Charles; Munic, Donna; Stern, Yaakov; Honig, Lawrence S.; Bell, Karen L.; Relkin, Norman; Chaing, Gloria; Ravdin, Lisa; Paul, Steven; Flashman, Laura A.; Seltzer, Marc; Hynes, Mary L.; Santulli, Robert B.; Bates, Vernice; Capote, Horacio; Rainka, Michelle; Friedl, Karl; Murali Doraiswamy, P.; Petrella, Jeffrey R.; Borges-Neto, Salvador; James, Olga; Wong, Terence; Coleman, Edward; Schwartz, Adam; Cellar, Janet S.; Levey, Allan L.; Lah, James J.; Behan, Kelly; Scott Turner, Raymond; Johnson, Kathleen; Reynolds, Brigid; Pearlson, Godfrey D.; Blank, Karen; Anderson, Karen; Obisesan, Thomas O.; Wolday, Saba; Allard, Joanne; Lerner, Alan; Ogrocki, Paula; Tatsuoka, Curtis; Fatica, Parianne; Farlow, Martin R.; Saykin, Andrew J.; Foroud, Tatiana M.; Shen, Li; Faber, Kelly; Kim, Sungeun; Nho, Kwangsik; Marie Hake, Ann; Matthews, Brandy R.; Brosch, Jared R.; Herring, Scott; Hunt, Cynthia; Albert, Marilyn; Onyike, Chiadi; D’Agostino, Daniel; Kielb, Stephanie; Graff-Radford, Neill R; Parfitt, Francine; Kendall, Tracy; Johnson, Heather; Petersen, Ronald; Jack, Clifford R.; Bernstein, Matthew; Borowski, Bret; Gunter, Jeff; Senjem, Matt; Vemuri, Prashanthi; Jones, David; Kantarci, Kejal; Ward, Chad; Mason, Sara S.; Albers, Colleen S.; Knopman, David; Johnson, Kris; Chertkow, Howard; Hosein, Chris; Mintzer, Jacob; Spicer, Kenneth; Bachman, David; Grossman, Hillel; Mitsis, Effie; Pomara, Nunzio; Hernando, Raymundo; Sarrael, Antero; Potter, William; Buckholtz, Neil; Hsiao, John; Kittur, Smita; Galvin, James E.; Cerbone, Brittany; Michel, Christina A.; Pogorelec, Dana M.; Rusinek, Henry; de Leon, Mony J; Glodzik, Lidia; De Santi, Susan; Johnson, Nancy; Chuang-Kuo; Kerwin, Diana; Bonakdarpour, Borna; Weintraub, Sandra; Grafman, Jordan; Lipowski, Kristine; Mesulam, Marek-Marsel; Scharre, Douglas W.; Kataki, Maria; Adeli, Anahita; Kaye, Jeffrey; Quinn, Joseph; Silbert, Lisa; Lind, Betty; Carter, Raina; Dolen, Sara; Borrie, Michael; Lee, T-Y; Bartha, Rob; Martinez, Walter; Villena, Teresa; Sadowsky, Carl; Khachaturian, Zaven; Ott, Brian R.; Querfurth, Henry; Tremont, Geoffrey; Frank, Richard; Fleischman, Debra; Arfanakis, Konstantinos; Shah, Raj C.; deToledo-Morrell, Leyla; Sorensen, Greg; Finger, Elizabeth; Pasternack, Stephen; Rachinsky, Irina; Drost, Dick; Rogers, John; Kertesz, Andrew; Furst, Ansgar J.; Chad, Stevan; Yesavage, Jerome; Taylor, Joy L.; Lane, Barton; Rosen, Allyson; Tinklenberg, Jared; Black, Sandra; Stefanovic, Bojana; Caldwell, Curtis; Robin Hsiung, Ging-Yuek; Mudge, Benita; Assaly, Michele; Fox, Nick; Schultz, Susan K.; Boles Ponto, Laura L.; Shim, Hyungsub; Ekstam Smith, Karen; Burns, Jeffrey M.; Swerdlow, Russell H.; Brooks, William M.; Marson, Daniel; Griffith, Randall; Clark, David; Geldmacher, David; Brockington, John; Roberson, Erik; Natelson Love, Marissa; DeCarli, Charles; Carmichael, Owen; Olichney, John; Maillard, Pauline; Fletcher, Evan; Nguyen, Dana; Preda, Andrian; Potkin, Steven; Mulnard, Ruth A.; Thai, Gaby; McAdams-Ortiz, Catherine; Landau, Susan; Jagust, William; Apostolova, Liana; Tingus, Kathleen; Woo, Ellen; Silverman, Daniel H.S.; Lu, Po H.; Bartzokis, George; Thompson, Paul; Donohue, Michael; Thomas, Ronald G.; Walter, Sarah; Gessert, Devon; Brewer, James; Vanderswag, Helen; Sather, Tamie; Jiminez, Gus; Balasubramanian, Archana B.; Mason, Jennifer; Sim, Iris; Aisen, Paul; Davis, Melissa; Morrison, Rosemary; Harvey, Danielle; Thal, Lean; Beckett, Laurel; Neylan, Thomas; Finley, Shannon; Weiner, Michael W.; Hayes, Jacqueline; Rosen, Howard J.; Miller, Bruce L.; Perry, David; Massoglia, Dino; Brawman-Mentzer, Olga; Schuff, Norbert; Smith, Charles D.; Hardy, Peter; Sinha, Partha; Oates, Elizabeth; Conrad, Gary; Koeppe, Robert A.; Lord, Joanne L.; Heidebrink, Judith L.; Arnold, Steven E.; Karlawish, Jason H.; Wolk, David; Clark, Christopher M.; Trojanowki, John Q.; Shaw, Leslie M.; Lee, Virginia; Korecka, Magdalena; Figurski, Michal; Toga, Arthur W.; Crawford, Karen; Neu, Scott; Schneider, Lon S.; Pawluczyk, Sonia; Beccera, Mauricio; Teodoro, Liberty; Spann, Bryan M.; Womack, Kyle; Mathews, Dana; Quiceno, Mary; Foster, Norm; Montine, Tom; Fruehling, J. Jay; Harding, Sandra; Johnson, Sterling; Asthana, Sanjay; Carlsson, Cynthia M.; Petrie, Eric C.; Peskind, Elaine; Li, Gail; Porsteinsson, Anton P.; Goldstein, Bonnie S.; Martin, Kim; Makino, Kelly M.; Ismail, M. Saleem; Brand, Connie; Smith, Amanda; Ashok Raj, Balebail; Fargher, Kristin; Kuller, Lew; Mathis, Chet; Ann Oakley, Mary; Lopez, Oscar L.; Simpson, Donna M.; Sink, Kaycee M.; Gordineer, Leslie; Williamson, Jeff D.; Garg, Pradeep; Watkins, Franklin; Cairns, Nigel J.; Raichle, Marc; Morris, John C.; Householder, Erin; Taylor-Reinwald, Lisa; Holtzman, David; Ances, Beau; Carroll, Maria; Creech, Mary L.; Franklin, Erin; Mintun, Mark A.; Schneider, Stacy; Oliver, Angela; Duara, Ranjan; Varon, Daniel; Greig, Maria T.; Roberts, Peggy; Varma, Pradeep; MacAvoy, Martha G.; Carson, Richard E.; van Dyck, Christopher H.; Davies, Peter; Holtzman, David; Morris, John C.; Bales, Kelly; Pickering, Eve H.; Lee, Jin-Moo; Heitsch, Laura; Kauwe, John; Goate, Alison; Piccio, Laura; Cruchaga, Carlos

      2016-01-01

      Genome-wide association studies of 146 plasma protein levels in 818 individuals revealed 56 genome-wide significant associations (28 novel) with 47 analytes. Loci associated with plasma levels of 39 proteins tested have been previously associated with various complex traits such as heart disease, inflammatory bowel disease, Type 2 diabetes, and multiple sclerosis. These data suggest that these plasma protein levels may constitute informative endophenotypes for these complex traits. We found three potential pleiotropic genes: ABO for plasma SELE and ACE levels, FUT2 for CA19-9 and CEA plasma levels, and APOE for ApoE and CRP levels. We also found multiple independent signals in loci associated with plasma levels of ApoH, CA19-9, FetuinA, IL6r, and LPa. Our study highlights the power of biological traits for genetic studies to identify genetic variants influencing clinically relevant traits, potential pleiotropic effects, and complex disease associations in the same locus.

    8. Human enteric viruses--potential indicators for enhanced monitoring of recreational water quality.

      PubMed

      Updyke, Erin Allmann; Wang, Zi; Sun, Si; Connell, Christina; Kirs, Marek; Wong, Mayee; Lu, Yuanan

      2015-10-01

      Recreational waters contaminated with human fecal pollution are a public health concern, and ensuring the safety of recreational waters for public use is a priority of both the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). Current recreational water standards rely on fecal indicator bacteria (FIB) levels as indicators of human disease risk. However present evidence indicates that levels of FIB do not always correspond to the presence of other potentially harmful organisms, such as viruses. Thus, enteric viruses are currently tested as water quality indicators, but have yet to be successfully implemented in routine monitoring of water quality. This study utilized enteric viruses as possible alternative indicators of water quality to examine 18 different fresh and offshore recreational waters on O'ahu, Hawai'i, by using newly established laboratory techniques including highly optimized PCR, real time PCR, and viral infectivity assays. All sample sites were detected positive for human enteric viruses by PCR including enterovirus, norovirus genogroups I and II, and male specific FRNA coliphage. A six time-point seasonal study of enteric virus presence indicated significant variation in virus detection between the rainy and dry seasons. Quantitative PCR detected the presence of norovirus genogroup II at levels at which disease risk may occur, and there was no correlation found between enteric virus presence and FIB counts. Under the present laboratory conditions, no infectious viruses were detected from the samples PCR-positive for enteric viruses. These data emphasize both the need for additional indicators for improved monitoring of water quality, and the feasibility of using enteric viruses as these indicators.

    9. Genome-wide screening of indicator genes for assessing the potential carcinogenic risk of Nanjing city drinking water.

      PubMed

      Zhang, Rui; Cheng, Shupei; Li, Aimin; Sun, Jie; Zhang, Yan; Zhang, Xuxiang

      2011-07-01

      Effects of all pollutants existing in the Nanjing city drinking water (DWNC) on mouse gene transcription levels were measured to assess the DWNC carcinogenic risks and to identify candidate indicator genes for assessing and early warning the cancer risks. Transcriptional expression levels of 14,000 hepatic genes for the treatment group mice (Mus musculus, ICR) fed with DWNC for 90 days were detected using the GeneChip(®) Mouse Genome 430A 2.0 array. The analysis indicated that the transcriptional levels of 294 genes were up-regulated and 542 ones were down-regulated. Of these genes, 12 ones identified to be involved in at least five different types of cancers were further analyzed. An interrogation by Kyoto Encyclopedia of Genes and Genomes (KEGG) revealed that three (including ITGAV, CCND1 and SMAD2) of the 12 genes were mapped to pathway in cancer. Gene Ontology (GO) function annotation also showed that they were associated with the functional categories of cell cycle regulation, adhesion, apoptosis, signal transduction and so on which are closely implicated in tumorigenesis and progression. The correlations between the aberrant expressions of them and the genesis and progression of cancers have been further documented by a number of scientific researches. These results might demonstrate that the potential toxicity and carcinogenic risks were associated with DWNC. Moreover, ITGAV, CCND1 and SMAD2 were identified as the most likely candidate indicator genes for the assessment of the combined carcinogenic risk of all pollutants existing in DWNC.

    10. Ability of Dental Students in Spain to Identify Potentially Malignant Disorders and Oral Cancer.

      PubMed

      Cerero-Lapiedra, Rocío; Esparza-Gómez, Germán C; Casado-de la Cruz, Laura; Domínguez-Gordillo, Adelaida A; Corral-Linaza, César; Seoane-Romero, Juan M

      2015-08-01

      The aim of this study was to assess the ability of students at the School of Dentistry, Complutense University of Madrid, Spain, to diagnose oral cancer and other potentially malignant disorders, as well as to compare their ability at different stages of the learning process and evaluate their knowledge retention. Students were surveyed after they had studied oral medicine and oral pathology at two time points: midway through and near the end of their studies. The survey consisted of questions about 40 photographs of benign oral lesions, malignant oral lesions, and potentially malignant disorders. The response rate for all groups was greater than 70%. The results showed that these students' overall success rate in differentiating benign from malignant lesions averaged 73.9%. When the distinction for potentially malignant disorders was included, their average overall success rate decreased to 42.8% (p<0.001). Furthermore, the students' average success rate was at its lowest at the end of the dental program (p<0.001). Results from this study suggest that, given these students' difficulties in identifying potentially malignant disorders, an increased emphasis on cancer education in the dental curriculum may be needed for future practitioners to master this ability.

    11. Development of biological indices for identifying and evaluating impacts of pollutants on freshwater ecosystems. Final report, June 1975-October 1980

      SciTech Connect

      Cairns, J. Jr.; Cherry, D.S.

      1980-09-30

      The ten Research Areas reported included: (1) the development of functional indices for identifying and evaluating impacts of pollutants on Aufwuchs communities, (2) relationship of protozoan colonization rates to the eutrophication process, (3) testing of methods to determine the functioning of zooplankton communities subjected to entrainment stress, (4) the use of the first steps of detritus processing (microbial decomposition) as a technique for assessing pollutional stress on aquatic communities in a river system, (5) relationship of protozoan invasion and extinction rate to the eutrophication process, (6) extension of present early colonization studies to the simultaneous evaluation of natural environmental parameters and power plant effluents and application of the early colonization approach to microbial communities in streams of the New River drainage, (7) testing of single species-community responses of protozoans from selected heavy metals, (8) the effects of selected power plant pollutants on grazer utilization of Aufwuchs, (9) investigation of bioconcentration and bioaccumulation mechanisms of the Asiatic clam (Corbicula fluminea) populations in field artificial streams and laboratory microcosms with reference to physical chemistry and diet alterations, and (10) investigation of the homeostatic regulation in bluegill sunfish following acute hypothermal shock and to other power plant related effluents.

    12. Bacterial targets as potential indicators of diesel fuel toxicity in subantarctic soils.

      PubMed

      van Dorst, Josie; Siciliano, Steven D; Winsley, Tristrom; Snape, Ian; Ferrari, Belinda C

      2014-07-01

      Appropriate remediation targets or universal guidelines for polar regions do not currently exist, and a comprehensive understanding of the effects of diesel fuel on the natural microbial populations in polar and subpolar soils is lacking. Our aim was to investigate the response of the bacterial community to diesel fuel and to evaluate if these responses have the potential to be used as indicators of soil toxicity thresholds. We set up short- and long-exposure tests across a soil organic carbon gradient. Utilizing broad and targeted community indices, as well as functional genes involved in the nitrogen cycle, we investigated the bacterial community structure and its potential functioning in response to special Antarctic blend (SAB) diesel fuel. We found the primary effect of diesel fuel toxicity was a reduction in species richness, evenness, and phylogenetic diversity, with the resulting community heavily dominated by a few species, principally Pseudomonas. The decline in richness and phylogenetic diversity was linked to disruption of the nitrogen cycle, with species and functional genes involved in nitrification significantly reduced. Of the 11 targets we evaluated, we found the bacterial amoA gene indicative of potential ammonium oxidation, the most suitable indicator of toxicity. Dose-response modeling for this target generated an average effective concentration responsible for 20% change (EC20) of 155 mg kg(-1), which is consistent with previous Macquarie Island ecotoxicology assays. Unlike traditional single-species tolerance testing, bacterial targets allowed us to simultaneously evaluate more than 1,700 species from 39 phyla, inclusive of rare, sensitive, and functionally relevant portions of the community.

    13. Bacterial Targets as Potential Indicators of Diesel Fuel Toxicity in Subantarctic Soils

      PubMed Central

      van Dorst, Josie; Siciliano, Steven D.; Winsley, Tristrom; Snape, Ian

      2014-01-01

      Appropriate remediation targets or universal guidelines for polar regions do not currently exist, and a comprehensive understanding of the effects of diesel fuel on the natural microbial populations in polar and subpolar soils is lacking. Our aim was to investigate the response of the bacterial community to diesel fuel and to evaluate if these responses have the potential to be used as indicators of soil toxicity thresholds. We set up short- and long-exposure tests across a soil organic carbon gradient. Utilizing broad and targeted community indices, as well as functional genes involved in the nitrogen cycle, we investigated the bacterial community structure and its potential functioning in response to special Antarctic blend (SAB) diesel fuel. We found the primary effect of diesel fuel toxicity was a reduction in species richness, evenness, and phylogenetic diversity, with the resulting community heavily dominated by a few species, principally Pseudomonas. The decline in richness and phylogenetic diversity was linked to disruption of the nitrogen cycle, with species and functional genes involved in nitrification significantly reduced. Of the 11 targets we evaluated, we found the bacterial amoA gene indicative of potential ammonium oxidation, the most suitable indicator of toxicity. Dose-response modeling for this target generated an average effective concentration responsible for 20% change (EC20) of 155 mg kg−1, which is consistent with previous Macquarie Island ecotoxicology assays. Unlike traditional single-species tolerance testing, bacterial targets allowed us to simultaneously evaluate more than 1,700 species from 39 phyla, inclusive of rare, sensitive, and functionally relevant portions of the community. PMID:24771028

    14. An Empirical Comparison of Key Statistical Attributes Among Potential ICU Quality Indicators*

      PubMed Central

      Brown, Sydney E. S.; Ratcliffe, Sarah J.; Halpern, Scott D.

      2014-01-01

      Objective Good quality indicators should have face validity, relevance to patients, and be able to be measured reliably. Beyond these general requirements, good quality indicators should also have certain statistical properties, including sufficient variability to identify poor performers, relative insensitivity to severity adjustment, and the ability to capture what providers do rather than patients' characteristics. We assessed the performance of candidate indicators of ICU quality on these criteria. Indicators included ICU readmission, mortality, several length of stay outcomes, and the processes of venous-thromboembolism and stress ulcer prophylaxis provision. Design Retrospective cohort study Setting One hundred thirty-eight U.S. ICUs from 2001-2008 in the Project IMPACT database. Patients Two hundred sixty-eight thousand eight hundred twenty-four patients discharged from U.S. ICUs. Interventions None. Measurements and Main Results We assessed indicators' (1) variability across ICU-years; (2) degree of influence by patient vs. ICU and hospital characteristics using the Omega statistic; (3) sensitivity to severity adjustment by comparing the area under the receiver operating characteristic curve (AUC) between models including vs. excluding patient variables, and (4) correlation between risk adjusted quality indicators using a Spearman correlation. Large ranges of among-ICU variability were noted for all quality indicators, particularly for prolonged length of stay (4.7–71.3%) and the proportion of patients discharged home (30.6–82.0%), and ICU and hospital characteristics outweighed patient characteristics for stress ulcer prophylaxis (ω, 0.43; 95% CI, 0.34–0.54), venous thromboembolism prophylaxis (ω, 0.57; 95% CI, 0.53–0.61), and ICU readmissions (ω, 0.69; 95% CI, 0.52–0.90). Mortality measures were the most sensitive to severity adjustment (area under the receiver operating characteristic curve % difference, 29.6%); process measures were the

    15. Monoacylglycerol Lipase: A Novel Potential Therapeutic Target and Prognostic Indicator for Hepatocellular Carcinoma

      PubMed Central

      Zhang, Junyong; Liu, Zuojin; Lian, Zhengrong; Liao, Rui; Chen, Yi; Qin, Yi; Wang, Jinlong; Jiang, Qing; Wang, Xiaobo; Gong, Jianping

      2016-01-01

      Monoacylglycerol lipase (MAGL) is a key enzyme in lipid metabolism that is demonstrated to be involved in tumor progression through both energy supply of fatty acid (FA) oxidation and enhancing cancer cell malignance. The aim of this study was to investigate whether MAGL could be a potential therapeutic target and prognostic indicator for hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC). To evaluate the relationship between MAGL levels and clinical characteristics, a tissue microarray (TMA) of 353 human HCC samples was performed. MAGL levels in HCC samples were closely linked to the degree of malignancy and patient prognosis. RNA interference, specific pharmacological inhibitor JZL-184 and gene knock-in of MAGL were utilized to investigate the effects of MAGL on HCC cell proliferation, apoptosis, and invasion. MAGL played important roles in both proliferation and invasion of HCC cells through mechanisms that involved prostaglandin E2 (PGE2) and lysophosphatidic acid (LPA). JZL-184 administration significantly inhibited tumor growth in mice. Furthermore, we confirmed that promoter methylation of large tumor suppressor kinase 1 (LATS1) resulted in dysfunction of the Hippo signal pathway, which induced overexpression of MAGL in HCC. These results indicate that MAGL could be a potentially novel therapeutic target and prognostic indicator for HCC. PMID:27767105

    16. Hot spot analysis applied to identify ecosystem services potential in Lithuania

      NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

      Pereira, Paulo; Depellegrin, Daniel; Misiune, Ieva

      2016-04-01

      Hot spot analysis are very useful to identify areas with similar characteristics. This is important for a sustainable use of the territory, since we can identify areas that need to be protected, or restored. This is a great advantage in terms of land use planning and management, since we can allocate resources, reduce the economical costs and do a better intervention in the landscape. Ecosystem services (ES) are different according land use. Since landscape is very heterogeneous, it is of major importance understand their spatial pattern and where are located the areas that provide better ES and the others that provide less services. The objective of this work is to use hot-spot analysis to identify areas with the most valuable ES in Lithuania. CORINE land-cover (CLC) of 2006 was used as the main spatial information. This classification uses a grid of 100 m resolution and extracted a total of 31 land use types. ES ranking was carried out based on expert knowledge. They were asked to evaluate the ES potential of each different CLC from 0 (no potential) to 5 (very high potential). Hot spot analysis were evaluated using the Getis-ord test, which identifies cluster analysis available in ArcGIS toolbox. This tool identifies areas with significantly high low values and significant high values at a p level of 0.05. In this work we used hot spot analysis to assess the distribution of providing, regulating cultural and total (sum of the previous 3) ES. The Z value calculated from Getis-ord was used to statistical analysis to access the clusters of providing, regulating cultural and total ES. ES with high Z value show that they have a high number of cluster areas with high potential of ES. The results showed that the Z-score was significantly different among services (Kruskal Wallis ANOVA =834. 607, p<0.001). The Z score of providing services (0.096±2.239) were significantly higher than the total (0.093±2.045), cultural (0.080±1.979) and regulating (0.076±1.961). These

    17. Using Market Research to Characterize College Students and Identify Potential Targets for Influencing Health Behaviors.

      PubMed

      Berg, Carla J; Ling, Pamela M; Guo, Hongfei; Windle, Michael; Thomas, Janet L; Ahluwalia, Jasjit S; An, Lawrence C

      2010-12-01

      Marketing campaigns, such as those developed by the tobacco industry, are based on market research, which defines segments of a population by assessing psychographic characteristics (i.e., attitudes, interests). This study uses a similar approach to define market segments of college smokers, to examine differences in their health behaviors (smoking, drinking, binge drinking, exercise, diet), and to determine the validity of these segments. A total of 2,265 undergraduate students aged 18-25 years completed a 108-item online survey in fall 2008 assessing demographic, psychographic (i.e., attitudes, interests), and health-related variables. Among the 753 students reporting past 30-day smoking, cluster analysis was conducted using 21 psychographic questions and identified three market segments - Stoic Individualists, Responsible Traditionalists, and Thrill-Seeking Socializers. We found that segment membership was related to frequency of alcohol use, binge drinking, and limiting dietary fat. We then developed three messages targeting each segment and conducted message testing to validate the segments on a subset of 73 smokers representing each segment in spring 2009. As hypothesized, each segment indicated greater relevance and salience for their respective message. These findings indicate that identifying qualitatively different subgroups of young adults through market research may inform the development of engaging interventions and health campaigns targeting college students.

    18. Exome sequencing of hepatocellular carcinomas identifies new mutational signatures and potential therapeutic targets

      PubMed Central

      Alexandrov, Ludmil B; Calderaro, Julien; Rebouissou, Sandra; Couchy, Gabrielle; Meiller, Clément; Shinde, Jayendra; Soysouvanh, Frederic; Calatayud, Anna-Line; Pinyol, Roser; Pelletier, Laura; Balabaud, Charles; Laurent, Alexis; Blanc, Jean-Frederic; Mazzaferro, Vincenzo; Calvo, Fabien; Villanueva, Augusto; Nault, Jean-Charles; Bioulac-Sage, Paulette; Stratton, Michael R; Llovet, Josep M; Zucman-Rossi, Jessica

      2015-01-01

      Genomic analyses promise to improve tumor characterization in order to optimize personalized treatment for patients with hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC). Exome sequencing analysis of 243 liver tumors revealed mutational signatures associated with specific risk factors, mainly combined alcohol/tobacco consumption, and aflatoxin B1. We identified 161 putative driver genes associated with 11 recurrent pathways. Associations of mutations defined 3 groups of genes related to risk factors and centered on CTNNB1 (alcohol), TP53 (HBV), and AXIN1. Analyses according to tumor stage progression revealed TERT promoter mutation as an early event whereas FGF3, FGF4, FGF19/CCND1 amplification, TP53 and CDKN2A alterations, appeared at more advanced stages in aggressive tumors. In 28% of the tumors we identified genetic alterations potentially targetable by FDA-approved drugs. In conclusion, we identified risk factor-specific mutational signatures and defined the extensive landscape of altered genes and pathways in HCC which will be useful to design clinical trials for targeted therapy. PMID:25822088

    19. Proteomic Analysis of Saliva Identifies Potential Biomarkers for Orthodontic Tooth Movement

      PubMed Central

      Ellias, Mohd Faiz; Zainal Ariffin, Shahrul Hisham; Karsani, Saiful Anuar; Abdul Rahman, Mariati; Senafi, Shahidan; Megat Abdul Wahab, Rohaya

      2012-01-01

      Orthodontic treatment has been shown to induce inflammation, followed by bone remodelling in the periodontium. These processes trigger the secretion of various proteins and enzymes into the saliva. This study aims to identify salivary proteins that change in expression during orthodontic tooth movement. These differentially expressed proteins can potentially serve as protein biomarkers for the monitoring of orthodontic treatment and tooth movement. Whole saliva from three healthy female subjects were collected before force application using fixed appliance and at 14 days after 0.014′′ Niti wire was applied. Salivary proteins were resolved using two-dimensional gel electrophoresis (2DE) over a pH range of 3–10, and the resulting proteome profiles were compared. Differentially expressed protein spots were then identified by MALDI-TOF/TOF tandem mass spectrometry. Nine proteins were found to be differentially expressed; however, only eight were identified by MALDI-TOF/TOF. Four of these proteins—Protein S100-A9, immunoglobulin J chain, Ig alpha-1 chain C region, and CRISP-3—have known roles in inflammation and bone resorption. PMID:22919344

    20. Potential of calcium isotopes to identify fractionations in vegetation: experimental approach

      NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

      Cobert, F.; Schmitt, A.; Bourgade, P.; Stille, P.; Chabaux, F. J.; Badot, P.; Jaegler, T.

      2010-12-01

      -exchange reactions with the pectins in the cell walls of the conducting xylem. However, we also observe that bean organs from L4 experiment growing in nutrient solutions with lower Ca concentrations and low pH behave slightly differently and show reduced Ca isotopic fractionations compared with beans from the other experiments. All these results indicate that there is no simple correlation between Ca isotopic variations, Ca content and pH of the nutrient solution, and that also biological effects have to be involved. The data confirm the potential of the Ca isotopic system for tracing biological fractionations in natural ecosystems. Wiegand et al., (2005). Geophys. Res. Lett., 32, L11404 Page et al., (2008). Biogeochemistry, 88, 1-13 Cenki-Tok et al,. (2009). Geochim. Cosmochim. Acta, 73, 2215-2228 Holmden and Bélanger(2010). Geochim. Cosmochim. Acta, 74, 995-1015

    1. Identifying the potential loss of monitoring wells using an uncertainty analysis.

      PubMed

      Freedman, Vicky L; Waichler, Scott R; Cole, Charles R; Vermeul, Vince R; Bergeron, Marcel P

      2005-01-01

      From the mid-1940s through the 1980s, large volumes of waste water were discharged at the Hanford Site in southeastern Washington State, causing a large-scale rise (>20 m) in the water table. When waste water discharges ceased in 1988, ground water mounds began to dissipate. This caused a large number of wells to go dry and has made it difficult to monitor contaminant plume migration. To identify monitoring wells that will need replacement, a methodology has been developed using a first-order uncertainty analysis with UCODE, a nonlinear parameter estimation code. Using a three-dimensional, finite-element ground water flow code, key parameters were identified by calibrating to historical hydraulic head data. Results from the calibration period were then used to check model predictions by comparing monitoring wells' wet/dry status with field data. This status was analyzed using a methodology that incorporated the 0.3 cumulative probability derived from the confidence and prediction intervals. For comparison, a nonphysically based trend model was also used as a predictor of wells' wet/dry status. Although the numerical model outperformed the trend model, for both models, the central value of the intervals was a better predictor of a wet well status. The prediction interval, however, was more successful at identifying dry wells. Predictions made through the year 2048 indicated that 46% of the wells in the monitoring well network are likely to go dry in areas near the river and where the ground water mound is dissipating.

    2. Evaluating stakeholder participation in water management: intermediary outcomes as potential indicators for future resource management outcomes

      NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

      Carr, Gemma; Bloeschl, Guenter; Loucks, Daniel Pete

      2013-04-01

      Evaluation of participation programmes, projects and activities is essential to identify whether stakeholder involvement has been successful in achieving its aims. Aims may include an improvement in water resource management such as enhanced ecological functioning, an improvement in human wellbeing and economic conditions, or overcoming a conflict between interest groups. Evaluating against "interest-based" resource management criteria requires that a desirable outcome can be identified, agreed upon and be measured at the time of evaluation. In many water management situations where collaborative approaches are applied, multiple interests and objectives are present, or stakeholders have not yet identified their own positions and priorities. Even if a resource management objective has been identified and strategy agreed upon, resource management changes tend to emerge over longer timescales and evaluation frequently takes place before they can be recognised. Evaluating against resource management criteria may lead evaluators to conclude that a programme has failed because it has not achieved a resource management objective at the time of evaluation. This presents a critical challenge to researchers assessing the effectiveness of stakeholder participation programmes. One strategy to overcome this is to conduct "goal-free" evaluation to identify what the programme is actually achieving. An evaluation framework that includes intermediary outcomes that are both tangible achievements such as innovation, creation of new organisations, and shared information and knowledge, as well as intangible achievements such as trust and network development can be applied to more broadly assess a programme's success. Analysis of case-studies in the published literature for which a resource management outcome has been achieved shows that intermediary outcomes frequently precede resource management outcomes. They seem to emerge over shorter timescales than resource management outcomes

    3. Leveraging Concept-based Approaches to Identify Potential Phyto-therapies

      PubMed Central

      Sharma, Vivekanand; Sarkar, Indra Neil

      2013-01-01

      The potential of plant-based remedies has been documented in both traditional and contemporary biomedical literature. Such types of text sources may thus be sources from which one might identify potential plant-based therapies (“phyto-therapies”). Concept-based analytic approaches have been shown to uncover knowledge embedded within biomedical literature. However, to date there has been limited attention towards leveraging such techniques for the identification of potential phyto-therapies. This study presents concept-based analytic approaches for the retrieval and ranking of associations between plants and human diseases. Focusing on identification of phyto-therapies described in MEDLINE, both MeSH descriptors used for indexing and MetaMap inferred UMLS concepts are considered. Furthermore, the identification and ranking consider both direct (i.e., plant concepts directly correlated with disease concepts) and inferred (i.e., plant concepts associated with disease concepts based on shared signs and symptoms) relationships. Based on the two scoring methodologies used in this study, it was found that a vector space model approach outperformed probabilistic reliability based inferences. An evaluation of the approach is provided based on therapeutic interventions catalogued in both ClinicalTrials.gov and NDF-RT. The promising findings from this feasibility study highlight the challenges and applicability of concept-based analytic strategies for distilling phyto-therapeutic knowledge from text based knowledge sources like MEDLINE. PMID:23665360

    4. Event-related potential indices of workload in a single task paradigm

      NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

      Horst, R. L.; Munson, R. C.; Ruchkin, D. S.

      1984-01-01

      Many previous studies of both behavioral and physiological correlates of cognitive workload have burdened subjects with a contrived secondary task in order to assess the workload of a primary task. The present study investigated event-related potential (ERP) indices of workload in a single task paradigm. Subjects monitored changing digital readouts for values that went 'out-of-bounds'. The amplitude of a long-latency positivity in the ERPs elicited by readout changes increased with the number of readouts being monitored. This effect of workload on ERPs is reported, along with plans for additional analyses to address theoretical implications.

    5. The feasibility of two new anthropometric indices to identify hypertension in rural China: A cross-sectional study.

      PubMed

      Chang, Ye; Guo, Xiaofan; Guo, Liang; Li, Zhao; Li, Yuan; Sun, Yingxian

      2016-11-01

      Recently, 2 new anthropometric indices, the A Body Shape Index (ABSI) and Body Roundness Index (BRI), have been developed. Our study was to compare the associations between different anthropometric indices, including ABSI, BRI, body mass index (BMI), waist circumference (WC) and waist-to-hip ratio (WHR), and hypertension in a rural population of northeast China.This cross-sectional study was conducted in the rural areas of northeast China from January 2012 to August 2013 using a multistage, stratified random cluster-sampling scheme. All eligible permanent residents aged ≥35 years (a total of 14,016 individuals) in each village were invited to participate in the study. A final sample size of 11,345 (5253 males and 6092 females) were included in this study.All the 5 anthropometric measures were positively correlated with hypertension. The prevalence of hypertension increased across quartiles for ABSI, BMI, BRI, WC, and WHR. Multivariable logistic regression analysis of the presence of hypertension for the highest quartile versus the lowest quartile of each anthropometric measure, showed that BRI had the largest values of ORs (OR: 3.49, 95% CI: 2.86-4.21 in men; OR: 3.06, 95% CI: 2.56-3.67 in women) and ABSI had the smallest ORs (OR: 1.30, 95% CI: 1.06-1.58 in men; OR: 1.19, 95% CI: 1.04-1.34 in women). BRI had the highest AROCs for hypertension (AROC: 0.65, 95% CI: 0.64-0.67 for men and AROC: 0.68, 95% CI: 0.67-0.70 for women), while ABSI had the lowest AROCs for hypertension (AROC: 0.60, 95% CI: 0.58-0.61 for men and AROC: 0.59, 95% CI: 0.58-0.61 for women).Our results showed that ABSI, BMI, BRI, WC, and WHR were all associated with hypertension. ABSI showed the weakest association with hypertension, while BRI showed potential for use as an alternative obesity measure in assessment of hypertension.

    6. Identifying potential virulence determinants in viral haemorrhagic septicaemia virus (VHSV) for rainbow trout.

      PubMed

      Campbell, S; Collet, B; Einer-Jensen, K; Secombes, C J; Snow, M

      2009-11-09

      We identified viral haemorrhagic septicaemia virus (VHSV) isolates classified within Genotype Ib which are genetically similar (>99.4% glycoprotein amino acid identity) yet, based on their isolation history, were suspected to differ in virulence in juvenile rainbow trout. The virulence of an isolate recovered in 2000 from a viral haemorrhagic septicaemia disease episode in a marine rainbow trout farm in Sweden (SE-SVA-1033) was evaluated in juvenile rainbow trout via intraperitoneal injection and immersion challenge alongside 3 isolates recovered from wild-caught marine fish (DK-4p37, DK-5e59 and UKMLA98/6HE1) suspected of being of low pathogenicity to trout. Mortality data revealed that isolate SE-SVA-1033 caused VHSV-specific mortality in both intraperitoneal and immersion challenges (75.0 and 15.4%, respectively). The remaining Genotype Ib isolates caused significantly lower mortalities using the same experimental infection routes (<35.0 and <2.0%, respectively). Having identified VHSV isolates with clear differences in their pathogenicity, coding and inter-genic non-coding regions of 2 isolates (SE-SVA-1033 and DK-4p37) were determined and compared in order to identify potential markers responsible for the observed differences in virulence. Only 4 predicted amino acid substitutions were identified across the genome sequenced; these occurred in the N (R46G), G (S113G), NV (L12F) and L (S56A) proteins. These findings form the basis for further studies aimed at determining the biological significance of these mutations and suggest that small changes at the molecular level can cause significant changes in the virulence properties of VHSV isolates.

    7. Identifying potential conflict associated with oil and gas exploration in Texas state coastal waters: A multicriteria spatial analysis.

      PubMed

      Brody, Samuel D; Grover, Himanshu; Bernhardt, Sarah; Tang, Zhenghong; Whitaker, Bianca; Spence, Colin

      2006-10-01

      Recent interest in expanding offshore oil production within waters of the United States has been met with opposition by groups concerned with recreational, environmental, and aesthetic values associated with the coastal zone. Although the proposition of new oil platforms off the coast has generated conflict over how coastal resources should be utilized, little research has been conducted on where these user conflicts might be most intense and which sites might be most suitable for locating oil production facilities in light of the multiple, and often times, competing interests. In this article, we develop a multiple-criteria spatial decision support tool that identifies the potential degree of conflict associated with oil and gas production activities for existing lease tracts in the coastal margin of Texas. We use geographic information systems to measure and map a range of potentially competing representative values impacted by establishing energy extraction infrastructure and then spatially identify which leased tracts are the least contentious sites for oil and gas production in Texas state waters. Visual and statistical results indicate that oil and gas lease blocks within the study area vary in their potential to generate conflict among multiple stakeholders.

    8. Potential Coastal Pumped Hydroelectric Energy Storage Locations Identified using GIS-based Topographic Analysis

      NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

      Parsons, R.; Barnhart, C. J.; Benson, S. M.

      2013-12-01

      Large-scale electrical energy storage could accommodate variable, weather dependent energy resources such as wind and solar. Pumped hydroelectric energy storage (PHS) and compressed energy storage area (CAES) have life cycle energy and financial costs that are an order of magnitude lower than conventional electrochemical storage technologies. However PHS and CAES storage technologies require specific geologic conditions. Conventional PHS requires an upper and lower reservoir separated by at least 100 m of head, but no more than 10 km in horizontal distance. Conventional PHS also impacts fresh water supplies, riparian ecosystems, and hydrologic environments. A PHS facility that uses the ocean as the lower reservoir benefits from a smaller footprint, minimal freshwater impact, and the potential to be located near off shore wind resources and population centers. Although technologically nascent, today one coastal PHS facility exists. The storage potential for coastal PHS is unknown. Can coastal PHS play a significant role in augmenting future power grids with a high faction of renewable energy supply? In this study we employ GIS-based topographic analysis to quantify the coastal PHS potential of several geographic locations, including California, Chile and Peru. We developed automated techniques that seek local topographic minima in 90 m spatial resolution shuttle radar topography mission (SRTM) digital elevation models (DEM) that satisfy the following criteria conducive to PHS: within 10 km from the sea; minimum elevation 150 m; maximum elevation 1000 m. Preliminary results suggest the global potential for coastal PHS could be very significant. For example, in northern Chile we have identified over 60 locations that satisfy the above criteria. Two of these locations could store over 10 million cubic meters of water or several GWh of energy. We plan to report a global database of candidate coastal PHS locations and to estimate their energy storage capacity.

    9. Multi-trait BLUP model indicates sorghum hybrids with genetic potential for agronomic and nutritional traits.

      PubMed

      Almeida Filho, J E; Tardin, F D; Guimarães, J F R; Resende, M D V; Silva, F F; Simeone, M L; Menezes, C B; Queiroz, V A V

      2016-02-26

      The breeding of sorghum, Sorghum bicolor (L.) Moench, aimed at improving its nutritional quality, is of great interest, since it can be used as a highly nutritive alternative food source and can possibly be cultivated in regions with low rainfall. The objective of the present study was to evaluate the potential and genetic diversity of grain-sorghum hybrids for traits of agronomic and nutritional interest. To this end, the traits grain yield and flowering, and concentrations of protein, potassium, calcium, magnesium, sulfur, iron, manganese, and zinc in the grain were evaluated in 25 grain-sorghum hybrids, comprising 18 experimental hybrids of Embrapa Milho e Sorgo and seven commercial hybrids. The genetic potential was analyzed by a multi-trait best linear unbiased prediction (BLUP) model, and cluster analysis was accomplished by squared Mahalanobis distance using the predicted genotypic values. Hybrids 0306037 and 0306034 stood out in the agronomic evaluation. The hybrids with agronomic prominence, however, did not stand out for the traits related to the nutritional quality of the grain. Three clusters were formed from the dendrogram obtained with the unweighted pair group method with arithmetic mean method. From the results of the genotypic BLUP and the analysis of the dendrogram, hybrids 0577337, 0441347, 0307651, and 0306037 were identified as having the potential to establish a population that can aggregate alleles for all the evaluated traits of interest.

    10. Ecosystem greenspots: identifying potential drought, fire, and climate-change micro-refuges.

      PubMed

      Mackey, Brendan; Berry, Sandra; Hugh, Sonia; Ferrier, Simon; Harwood, Thomas D; Williams, Kristen J

      2012-09-01

      In response to climate change and other threatening processes there is renewed interest in the role of refugia and refuges. In bioregions that experience drought and fire, micro-refuges can play a vital role in ensuring the persistence of species. We develop and apply an approach to identifying potential micro-refuges based on a time series of remotely sensed vegetation greenness (fraction of photosynthetically active radiation intercepted by the sunlit canopy; fPAR). The primary data for this analysis were NASA MODIS 16-day L3 Global 250 m (MOD13Q1) satellite imagery. This method draws upon relevant ecological theory (source sink habitats, habitat templet) to calculate a micro-refuge index, which is analyzed for each of the major vegetation ecosystems in the case-study region (the Great Eastern Ranges of New South Wales, Australia). Potential ecosystem greenspots were identified, at a range of thresholds, based on an index derived from: the mean and coefficient of variance (COV) of fPAR over the 10-year time series; the minimum mean annual fPAR; and the COV of the 12 values of mean monthly fPAR. These greenspots were mapped and compared with (1) an index of vascular plant species composition, (2) environmental variables, and (3) protected areas. Potential micro-refuges were found within all vegetation ecosystem types. The total area of ecosystem greenspots within the upper 25% threshold was 48 406 ha; around 0.2% of the total area of native vegetation (23.9 x 10(6) ha) in the study region. The total area affected by fire was 3.4 x 10(6) ha. The results of the environmental diagnostic analysis suggest deterministic controls on the geographical distribution of potential micro-refuges that may continue to function under climate change. The approach is relevant to other regions of the world where the role of micro-refuges in the persistence of species is recognized, including across the world's arid zones and, in particular, for the Australian, southern African, and

    11. Accompanying indicators of plasma potential when using impedance probes in low density plasma

      NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

      Walker, David; Blackwell, David; Fernsler, Richard; Amatucci, William

      2016-09-01

      In earlier works, we used spheres of various sizes as impedance probes in demonstrating a method of determining plasma potential, φp, when the probe radius, rp, is much larger than λD. These works demonstrate a method of measuring plasma potential with an impedance probe by applying a small amplitude rf signal and tracking a minimum in Re (Zac) as a function of probe bias, Vb where Re (Zac) and Im(Zac) are available using a network analyzer through measurement of the reflection coefficient, Γ. However, for borderline cases where the requirement that rp >>λD begins to fail, Re (Zac) ( 1 /ne) can rise to k Ω's for even moderate levels of Vb, causing a large impedance mismatch with the network analyzer (Z0 = 50 Ω) . The purpose of the recent work is to demonstrate that Γ itself along with Im(Zac) and their derivatives are useful as accompanying indicators to Re (Zac) in these difficult cases. We will present experimental data along with model comparisons to demonstrate the usefulness and limits of the additional indicators. Work Supported by Naval Research Laboratory Base Program.

    12. Local indicators of climate change: The potential contribution of local knowledge to climate research

      PubMed Central

      Reyes-García, Victoria; Fernández-Llamazares, Álvaro; Guèze, Maximilien; Garcés, Ariadna; Mallo, Miguel; Vila-Gómez, Margarita; Vilaseca, Marina

      2016-01-01

      Local knowledge has been proposed as a place-based tool to ground-truth climate models and to narrow their geographic sensitivity. To assess the potential role of local knowledge in our quest to understand better climate change and its impacts, we first need to critically review the strengths and weaknesses of local knowledge of climate change and the potential complementarity with scientific knowledge. With this aim, we conducted a systematic, quantitative meta-analysis of published peer-reviewed documents reporting local indicators of climate change (including both local observations of climate change and observed impacts on the biophysical and the social systems). Overall, primary data on the topic are not abundant, the methodological development is incipient, and the geographical extent is unbalanced. On the 98 case studies documented, we recorded the mention of 746 local indicators of climate change, mostly corresponding to local observations of climate change (40%), but also to observed impacts on the physical (23%), the biological (19%), and the socioeconomic (18%) systems. Our results suggest that, even if local observations of climate change are the most frequently reported type of change, the rich and fine-grained knowledge in relation to impacts on biophysical systems could provide more original contributions to our understanding of climate change at local scale. PMID:27642368

    13. Local indicators of climate change: The potential contribution of local knowledge to climate research.

      PubMed

      Reyes-García, Victoria; Fernández-Llamazares, Álvaro; Guèze, Maximilien; Garcés, Ariadna; Mallo, Miguel; Vila-Gómez, Margarita; Vilaseca, Marina

      2016-01-01

      Local knowledge has been proposed as a place-based tool to ground-truth climate models and to narrow their geographic sensitivity. To assess the potential role of local knowledge in our quest to understand better climate change and its impacts, we first need to critically review the strengths and weaknesses of local knowledge of climate change and the potential complementarity with scientific knowledge. With this aim, we conducted a systematic, quantitative meta-analysis of published peer-reviewed documents reporting local indicators of climate change (including both local observations of climate change and observed impacts on the biophysical and the social systems). Overall, primary data on the topic are not abundant, the methodological development is incipient, and the geographical extent is unbalanced. On the 98 case studies documented, we recorded the mention of 746 local indicators of climate change, mostly corresponding to local observations of climate change (40%), but also to observed impacts on the physical (23%), the biological (19%), and the socioeconomic (18%) systems. Our results suggest that, even if local observations of climate change are the most frequently reported type of change, the rich and fine-grained knowledge in relation to impacts on biophysical systems could provide more original contributions to our understanding of climate change at local scale.

    14. An Australasian model license reassessment procedure for identifying potentially unsafe drivers.

      PubMed

      Fildes, Brian N; Charlton, Judith; Pronk, Nicola; Langford, Jim; Oxley, Jennie; Koppel, Sjaanie

      2008-08-01

      Most licensing jurisdictions in Australia currently employ age-based assessment programs as a means to manage older driver safety, yet available evidence suggests that these programs have no safety benefits. This paper describes a community referral-based model license re assessment procedure for identifying and assessing potentially unsafe drivers. While the model was primarily developed for assessing older driver fitness to drive, it could be applicable to other forms of driver impairment associated with increased crash risk. It includes a three-tier process of assessment, involving the use of validated and relevant assessment instruments. A case is argued that this process is a more systematic, transparent and effective process for managing older driver safety and thus more likely to be widely acceptable to the target community and licensing authorities than age-based practices.

    15. Identifying Multiple Potential Metabolic Cycles in Time-Series from Biolog Experiments

      PubMed Central

      Schaufler, Katharina; Tedin, Karsten; Vehkala, Minna; Corander, Jukka

      2016-01-01

      Biolog Phenotype Microarray (PM) is a technology allowing simultaneous screening of the metabolic behaviour of bacteria under a large number of different conditions. Bacteria may often undergo several cycles of metabolic activity during a Biolog experiment. We introduce a novel algorithm to identify these metabolic cycles in PM experimental data, thus increasing the potential of PM technology in microbiology. Our method is based on a statistical decomposition of the time-series measurements into a set of growth models. We show that the method is robust to measurement noise and captures accurately the biologically relevant signals from the data. Our implementation is made freely available as a part of an R package for PM data analysis and can be found at www.helsinki.fi/bsg/software/Biolog_Decomposition. PMID:27676629

    16. Positive selection moments identify potential functional residues in human olfactory receptors

      NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

      Singer, M. S.; Weisinger-Lewin, Y.; Lancet, D.; Shepherd, G. M.

      1996-01-01

      Correlated mutation analysis and molecular models of olfactory receptors have provided evidence that residues in the transmembrane domains form a binding pocket for odor ligands. As an independent test of these results, we have calculated positive selection moments for the alpha-helical sixth transmembrane domain (TM6) of human olfactory receptors. The moments can be used to identify residues that have been preferentially affected by positive selection and are thus likely to interact with odor ligands. The results suggest that residue 622, which is commonly a serine or threonine, could form critical H-bonds. In some receptors a dual-serine subsite, formed by residues 622 and 625, could bind hydroxyl determinants on odor ligands. The potential importance of these residues is further supported by site-directed mutagenesis in the beta-adrenergic receptor. The findings should be of practical value for future physiological studies, binding assays, and site-directed mutagenesis.

    17. Use of a latency-based demand assessment to identify potential demands for functional analyses.

      PubMed

      Call, Nathan A; Miller, Sarah J; Mintz, Joslyn Cynkus; Mevers, Joanna Lomas; Scheithauer, Mindy C; Eshelman, Julie E; Beavers, Gracie A

      2016-12-01

      Unlike potential tangible positive reinforcers, which are typically identified for inclusion in functional analyses empirically using preference assessments, demands are most often selected arbitrarily or based on caregiver report. The present study evaluated the use of a demand assessment with 12 participants who exhibited escape-maintained problem behavior. Participants were exposed to 10 demands, with aversiveness measured by average latency to the first instance of problem behavior. In subsequent functional analyses, results of a demand condition that included the demand with the shortest latency to problem behavior resulted in identification of an escape function for 11 of the participants. In contrast, a demand condition that included the demand with the longest latency resulted in identification of an escape function for only 5 participants. The implication of these findings is that for the remaining 7 participants, selection of the demand for the functional analysis without using the results of the demand assessment could have produced a false-negative finding.

    18. Identifying potential sources of Sudan I contamination in Capsicum fruits over its growth period.

      PubMed

      Wu, Naiying; Gao, Wei; Zhou, Li; Lian, Yunhe; Li, Fengfei; Han, Wenjie

      2015-04-15

      Sudan dyes in spices are often assumed to arise from cross-contamination or malicious addition. Here, experiments were carried out to identify the potential source of Sudan I-IV in Capsicum fruits through investigation of their contents in native Capsicum tissues, soils and associated agronomic materials. Sudan II-IV was not detected in any of the tested samples. Sudan I was found in almost all samples except for the mulching film. Sudan I concentrations decreased from stems to leaves and then to fruits or roots. Sudan I levels in soils were significantly elevated by vegetation treatment. These results exclude the possibility of soil as the main source for Sudan I contamination in Capsicum fruits. Further study found out pesticide and fertilizer constitutes the major source of Sudan I contamination. This work represents a preliminary step for a detailed Sudan I assessment to support Capsicum management and protection in the studied region.

    19. Evolutionary analysis of vision genes identifies potential drivers of visual differences between giraffe and okapi

      PubMed Central

      Agaba, Morris; Cavener, Douglas R.

      2017-01-01

      Background The capacity of visually oriented species to perceive and respond to visual signal is integral to their evolutionary success. Giraffes are closely related to okapi, but the two species have broad range of phenotypic differences including their visual capacities. Vision studies rank giraffe’s visual acuity higher than all other artiodactyls despite sharing similar vision ecological determinants with many of them. The extent to which the giraffe’s unique visual capacity and its difference with okapi is reflected by changes in their vision genes is not understood. Methods The recent availability of giraffe and okapi genomes provided opportunity to identify giraffe and okapi vision genes. Multiple strategies were employed to identify thirty-six candidate mammalian vision genes in giraffe and okapi genomes. Quantification of selection pressure was performed by a combination of branch-site tests of positive selection and clade models of selection divergence through comparing giraffe and okapi vision genes and orthologous sequences from other mammals. Results Signatures of selection were identified in key genes that could potentially underlie giraffe and okapi visual adaptations. Importantly, some genes that contribute to optical transparency of the eye and those that are critical in light signaling pathway were found to show signatures of adaptive evolution or selection divergence. Comparison between giraffe and other ruminants identifies significant selection divergence in CRYAA and OPN1LW. Significant selection divergence was identified in SAG while positive selection was detected in LUM when okapi is compared with ruminants and other mammals. Sequence analysis of OPN1LW showed that at least one of the sites known to affect spectral sensitivity of the red pigment is uniquely divergent between giraffe and other ruminants. Discussion By taking a systemic approach to gene function in vision, the results provide the first molecular clues associated with

    20. Indications for acceleration-dependent changes of membrane potential in the flagellate Euglena gracilis.

      PubMed

      Richter, P R; Schuster, M; Meyer, I; Lebert, M; Häder, D-P

      2006-12-01

      The effects of the calcium sequester EGTA on gravitactic orientation and membrane potential changes in the unicellular flagellate Euglena gracilis were investigated during a recent parabolic-flight experiment aboard of an Airbus A300. In the course of a flight parabola, an acceleration profile is achieved which yields subsequently about 20 s of hypergravity (1.8 g(n)), about 20 s of microgravity, and another 20 s of hypergravity phases. The movement behavior of the cells was investigated with real-time, computer-based image analysis. Membrane potential changes were detected with a newly developed photometer which measures absorption changes of the membrane potential-sensitive probe oxonol VI. To test whether the data obtained by the oxonol device were reliable, the signal of non-oxonol-labelled cells was recorded. In these samples, no absorption shift was detected. Changes of the oxonol VI signals indicate that the cells depolarize during acceleration (very obvious in the step from microgravity to hypergravity) and slightly hyperpolarize in microgravity, which can possibly be explained with the action of Ca-ATPases. These signals (mainly the depolarization) were significantly suppressed in the presence of EGTA (5 mM). Gravitaxis in parallel was also inhibited after addition of EGTA. Initially, negative gravitaxis was inverted into a positive one. Later, gravitaxis was almost undetectable.

    1. The Use of Three Long Non-Coding RNAs as Potential Prognostic Indicators of Astrocytoma.

      PubMed

      Zhi, Feng; Wang, Qiang; Xue, Lian; Shao, Naiyuan; Wang, Rong; Deng, Danni; Wang, Suinuan; Xia, Xiwei; Yang, Yilin

      2015-01-01

      Long noncoding RNAs (lncRNAs) are pervasively transcribed and play a key role in tumorigenesis. The aim of the study was to determine the lncRNA expression profile in astrocytomas and to assess its potential clinical value. We performed a three-step analysis to establish the lncRNA profile for astrocytoma: a) the lncRNA expression was examined on 3 astrocytomas as well as 3 NATs (normal adjacent tissues) using the lncRNA microarray; b) the top-hits were validated in 40 astrocytomas (WHO grade II-IV) by quantitative real time-PCR (qRT-PCR); c) the hits with significant differences were re-evaluated using qRT-PCR in 90 astrocytomas. Finally, 7 lncRNAs were found to have a significantly different expression profile in astrocytoma samples compared to the NAT samples. Unsupervised clustering analysis further revealed the potential of the 7-lncRNA profile to differentiate between tumors and NAT samples. The upregulation of ENST00000545440 and NR_002809 was associated with advanced clinical stages of astrocytoma. Using Kaplan-Meier survival analysis, we showed that the low expression of BC002811 or XLOC_010967, or the high expression of NR_002809 was significantly associated with poor patient survival. Moreover, Cox proportional hazard regression analysis revealed that this prognostic impact was independent of other clinicopathological factors. Our results indicate that the lncRNA profile may be a potential prognostic biomarker for the prediction of post-surgical outcomes.

    2. Identifying At-Risk Employees: Modeling Psychosocial Precursors of Potential Insider Threats

      SciTech Connect

      Greitzer, Frank L.; Kangas, Lars J.; Noonan, Christine F.; Dalton, Angela C.; Hohimer, Ryan E.

      2012-01-04

      In many insider crimes, managers and other coworkers observed that the offenders had exhibited signs of stress, disgruntlement, or other issues, but no alarms were raised. Barriers to using such psychosocial indicators include the inability to recognize the signs and the failure to record the behaviors so that they can be assessed. A psychosocial model was developed to assess an employee's behavior associated with an increased risk of insider abuse. The model is based on case studies and research literature on factors/correlates associated with precursor behavioral manifestations of individuals committing insider crimes. To test the model's agreement with human resources and management professionals, we conducted an experiment with positive results. If implemented in an operational setting, the model would be part of a set of management tools for employee assessment to identify employees who pose a greater insider threat.

    3. SWATH-based proteomics identified carbonic anhydrase 2 as a potential diagnosis biomarker for nasopharyngeal carcinoma

      PubMed Central

      Luo, Yanzhang; Mok, Tin Seak; Lin, Xiuxian; Zhang, Wanling; Cui, Yizhi; Guo, Jiahui; Chen, Xing; Zhang, Tao; Wang, Tong

      2017-01-01

      Nasopharyngeal carcinoma (NPC) is a serious threat to public health, and the biomarker discovery is of urgent needs. The data-independent mode (DIA) based sequential window acquisition of all theoretical fragment-ion spectra (SWATH) mass spectrometry (MS) has been proved to be precise in protein quantitation and efficient for cancer biomarker researches. In this study, we performed the first SWATH-MS analysis comparing the NPC and normal tissues. Spike-in stable isotope labeling by amino acids in cell culture (super-SILAC) MS was used as a shotgun reference. We identified and quantified 1414 proteins across all SWATH-MS analyses. We found that SWATH-MS had a unique feature to preferentially detect proteins with smaller molecular weights than either super-SILAC MS or human proteome background. With SWATH-MS, 29 significant differentially express proteins (DEPs) were identified. Among them, carbonic anhydrase 2 (CA2) was selected for further validation per novelty, MS quality and other supporting rationale. With the tissue microarray analysis, we found that CA2 had an AUC of 0.94 in differentiating NPC from normal tissue samples. In conclusion, SWATH-MS has unique features in proteome analysis, and it leads to the identification of CA2 as a potentially new diagnostic biomarker for NPC. PMID:28117408

    4. Exome Sequencing Identifies Potential Risk Variants for Mendelian Disorders at High Prevalence in Qatar

      PubMed Central

      Rodriguez-Flores, Juan L.; Fakhro, Khalid; Hackett, Neil R.; Salit, Jacqueline; Fuller, Jennifer; Agosto-Perez, Francisco; Gharbiah, Maey; Malek, Joel A.; Zirie, Mahmoud; Jayyousi, Amin; Badii, Ramin; Al-Marri, Ajayeb Al-Nabet; Chouchane, Lotfi; Stadler, Dora J.; Hunter-Zinck, Haley; Mezey, Jason G.; Crystal, Ronald G.

      2013-01-01

      Exome sequencing of families of related individuals has been highly successful in identifying genetic polymorphisms responsible for Mendelian disorders. Here, we demonstrate the value of the reverse approach, where we use exome sequencing of a sample of unrelated individuals to analyze allele frequencies of known causal mutations for Mendelian diseases. We sequenced the exomes of 100 individuals representing the three major genetic subgroups of the Qatari population (Q1 Bedouin, Q2 Persian-South Asian, Q3 African) and identified 37 variants in 33 genes with effects on 36 clinically significant Mendelian diseases. These include variants not present in 1000 Genomes and variants at high frequency when compared to 1000 Genomes populations. Several of these Mendelian variants were only segregating in one Qatari subpopulation, where the observed subpopulation specificity trends were confirmed in an independent population of 386 Qataris. Pre-marital genetic screening in Qatar tests for only 4 out of the 37, such that this study provides a set of Mendelian disease variants with potential impact on the epidemiological profile of the population that could be incorporated into the testing program if further experimental and clinical characterization confirms high penetrance. PMID:24123366

    5. Identifying potential misfit items in cognitive process of learning engineering mathematics based on Rasch model

      NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

      Ataei, Sh; Mahmud, Z.; Khalid, M. N.

      2014-04-01

      The students learning outcomes clarify what students should know and be able to demonstrate after completing their course. So, one of the issues on the process of teaching and learning is how to assess students' learning. This paper describes an application of the dichotomous Rasch measurement model in measuring the cognitive process of engineering students' learning of mathematics. This study provides insights into the perspective of 54 engineering students' cognitive ability in learning Calculus III based on Bloom's Taxonomy on 31 items. The results denote that some of the examination questions are either too difficult or too easy for the majority of the students. This analysis yields FIT statistics which are able to identify if there is data departure from the Rasch theoretical model. The study has identified some potential misfit items based on the measurement of ZSTD where the removal misfit item was accomplished based on the MNSQ outfit of above 1.3 or less than 0.7 logit. Therefore, it is recommended that these items be reviewed or revised to better match the range of students' ability in the respective course.

    6. BCIP: a gene-centered platform for identifying potential regulatory genes in breast cancer

      PubMed Central

      Wu, Jiaqi; Hu, Shuofeng; Chen, Yaowen; Li, Zongcheng; Zhang, Jian; Yuan, Hanyu; Shi, Qiang; Shao, Ningsheng; Ying, Xiaomin

      2017-01-01

      Breast cancer is a disease with high heterogeneity. Many issues on tumorigenesis and progression are still elusive. It is critical to identify genes that play important roles in the progression of tumors, especially for tumors with poor prognosis such as basal-like breast cancer and tumors in very young women. To facilitate the identification of potential regulatory or driver genes, we present the Breast Cancer Integrative Platform (BCIP, http://omics.bmi.ac.cn/bcancer/). BCIP maintains multi-omics data selected with strict quality control and processed with uniform normalization methods, including gene expression profiles from 9,005 tumor and 376 normal tissue samples, copy number variation information from 3,035 tumor samples, microRNA-target interactions, co-expressed genes, KEGG pathways, and mammary tissue-specific gene functional networks. This platform provides a user-friendly interface integrating comprehensive and flexible analysis tools on differential gene expression, copy number variation, and survival analysis. The prominent characteristic of BCIP is that users can perform analysis by customizing subgroups with single or combined clinical features, including subtypes, histological grades, pathologic stages, metastasis status, lymph node status, ER/PR/HER2 status, TP53 mutation status, menopause status, age, tumor size, therapy responses, and prognosis. BCIP will help to identify regulatory or driver genes and candidate biomarkers for further research in breast cancer. PMID:28327601

    7. Initial Experience in Single-Incision Transumbilical Laparoscopic Liver Resection: Indications, Potential Benefits, and Limitations

      PubMed Central

      Dapri, Giovanni; DiMarco, Livia; Cadière, Guy-Bernard; Donckier, Vincent

      2012-01-01

      Background. Single-incision transumbilical laparoscopic liver resection (SITLLR) has been recently described in limited series. We report our experience in SITLLR and discuss the future of this approach in terms of indications, potential benefits, and limitations, with a special reference to laparoscopic liver resection (LLR). Patients and Methods. Six patients underwent SITLLR. Indications were biliary cysts (3 cases), hydatid cysts (2), and colorectal liver metastasis (1). Procedures consisted in cysts unroofing, left lateral lobectomy, pericystectomy, and wedge resection. SITLLR was performed with 11 mm reusable trocar, 10 or 5 mm 30° scopes, 10 mm ultrasound probe, curved reusable instruments, and straight disposable bipolar shears. Results. Neither conversion to open surgery nor insertion of supplementary trocars was necessary. Median laparoscopic time was 105.5 minutes and median blood loss 275 mL. Median final umbilical scar length was 1.5 cm, and median length of stay was 4 days. No early or late complications occurred. Conclusion. SITLLR remains a challenging procedure. It is feasible in highly selected patients, requiring experience in hepatobiliary and laparoscopic surgery and skills in single-incision laparoscopy. Apart from cosmetic benefit, our experience and literature review did not show significant advantages if compared with multiport LLR, underlying that specific indications remain to be established. PMID:23082044

    8. Identifying the Potential Loss of Monitoring Wells Using an Uncertainty Analysis

      SciTech Connect

      Freedman, Vicky L.; Waichler, Scott R.; Cole, Charles R.; Vermeul, Vince R.; Bergeron, Marcel P.

      2005-11-01

      From the mid-1940s through the 1980s, large volumes of wastewater were discharged at the Hanford Site in southeastern Washington State, causing a large-scale rise (in excess of 20 m) in the water table. When wastewater discharges ceased in 1988, groundwater mounds began to dissipate. This caused a large number of wells to go dry and has made it difficult to monitor contaminant plume migration. To identify the wells that could potentially go dry, a first order uncertainty analysis was performed using a three-dimensional, finite element code (CFEST) coupled with UCODE, a nonlinear parameter estimation code. The analysis was conducted in four steps. First, key parameter values were identified by calibrating to historical hydraulic head data. Second, the model was tested for linearity, a strict requirement for representing output uncertainty. Third, results from the calibration period were used to verify model predictions by comparing monitoring wells? wet/dry status with field data. In the final step, predictions on the number and locations of dry wells were made through the year 2048. A non-physically based model that extrapolated trends at each individual well was also tested as a predictor of a well?s wet/dry status. Results demonstrated that when uncertainty in both parameter estimates and measurement error was considered, the CFEST-based model successfully predicted the majority of dry wells, outperforming the trend model. Predictions made through the year 2048 identified approximately 50% of the wells in the monitoring well network are likely to go dry, which can aid in decisions for their replacement.

    9. Omen: identifying potential spear-phishing targets before the email is sent.

      SciTech Connect

      Wendt, Jeremy Daniel.

      2013-07-01

      We present the results of a two year project focused on a common social engineering attack method called "spear phishing". In a spear phishing attack, the user receives an email with information specifically focused on the user. This email contains either a malware-laced attachment or a link to download the malware that has been disguised as a useful program. Spear phishing attacks have been one of the most effective avenues for attackers to gain initial entry into a target network. This project focused on a proactive approach to spear phishing. To create an effective, user-specific spear phishing email, the attacker must research the intended recipient. We believe that much of the information used by the attacker is provided by the target organization's own external website. Thus when researching potential targets, the attacker leaves signs of his research in the webserver's logs. We created tools and visualizations to improve cybersecurity analysts' abilities to quickly understand a visitor's visit patterns and interests. Given these suspicious visitors and log-parsing tools, analysts can more quickly identify truly suspicious visitors, search for potential spear-phishing targeted users, and improve security around those users before the spear phishing email is sent.

    10. Development of a Fire Risk Model to Identify Areas of Increased Potential for Fire Occurrences.

      PubMed

      Lehna, Carlee; Speller, Amanda; Hanchette, Carol; Fahey, Erin; Coty, Mary-Beth

      2016-01-01

      The purposes of this study were to use geographic information systems to create a cartographic risk model predicting areas of increased potential for fire occurrences and to validate the model. Seven literature-identified risk factors associated with burn injury were older than 65 years, non-white race, below high school education, low socioeconomic status, rented housing, year home built, and home value. Geographic information system methods were used in risk factor model development. Model validation occurred using residential county fire dispatch data and statistical analysis. Areas of high and severe risk were primarily located in the northwestern and central county regions. A strong correlation (r = .66) was found between risk model scores and fire incidence rates. Significant differences in mean fire rates by risk category (F (187,3) = 87.58, P < .0001) were found, with the exception of the low and medium risk categories. Fire incidence rates among census tracts showed positive spatial autocorrelation (Moran's I = 0.542, P < .0001) producing a map showing a significant cluster of high fire incidence in the northwestern region. The risk model has potential to lead to more targeted and effective fire prevention education programs. Such models would allow fire departments to focus limited resources in areas of highest fire risk.

    11. Airborne Quercus pollen in SW Spain: Identifying favourable conditions for atmospheric transport and potential source areas.

      PubMed

      Maya-Manzano, José María; Fernández-Rodríguez, Santiago; Smith, Matt; Tormo-Molina, Rafael; Reynolds, Andrew M; Silva-Palacios, Inmaculada; Gonzalo-Garijo, Ángela; Sadyś, Magdalena

      2016-11-15

      The pollen grains of Quercus spp. (oak trees) are allergenic. This study investigates airborne Quercus pollen in SW Spain with the aim identifying favourable conditions for atmospheric transport and potential sources areas. Two types of Quercus distribution maps were produced. Airborne Quercus pollen concentrations were measured at three sites located in the Extremadura region (SW Spain) for 3 consecutive years. The seasonal occurrence of Quercus pollen in the air was investigated, as well as days with pollen concentrations ≥80Pm(-3). The distance that Quercus pollen can be transported in appreciable numbers was calculated using clusters of back trajectories representing the air mass movement above the source areas (oak woodlands), and by using a state-of-the-art dispersion model. The two main potential sources of Quercus airborne pollen captured in SW Spain are Q. ilex subsp. ballota and Q. suber. The minimum distances between aerobiological stations and Quercus woodlands have been estimated as: 40km (Plasencia), 66km (Don Benito), 62km (Zafra) from the context of this study. Daily mean Quercus pollen concentration can exceed 1,700Pm(-3), levels reached not less than 24 days in a single year. High Quercus pollen concentration were mostly associated with moderate wind speed events (6-10ms(-1)), whereas that a high wind speed (16-20ms(-1)) seems to be associated with low concentrations.

    12. Structured methods for identifying and correcting potential human errors in space operations.

      PubMed

      Nelson, W R; Haney, L N; Ostrom, L T; Richards, R E

      1998-01-01

      Human performance plays a significant role in the development and operation of any complex system, and human errors are significant contributors to degraded performance, incidents, and accidents for technologies as diverse as medical systems, commercial aircraft, offshore oil platforms, nuclear power plants, and space systems. To date, serious accidents attributed to human error have fortunately been rare in space operations. However, as flight rates go up and the duration of space missions increases, the accident rate could increase unless proactive action is taken to identity and correct potential human errors in space operations. The Idaho National Engineering and Environmental Laboratory (INEEL) has developed and applied structured methods of human error analysis to identify potential human errors, assess their effects on system performance, and develop strategies to prevent the errors or mitigate their consequences. These methods are being applied in NASA-sponsored programs to the domain of commercial aviation, focusing on airplane maintenance and air traffic management. The application of human error analysis to space operations could contribute to minimize the risks associated with human error in the design and operation of future space systems.

    13. Predicting Fish Growth Potential and Identifying Water Quality Constraints: A Spatially-Explicit Bioenergetics Approach

      NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

      Budy, Phaedra; Baker, Matthew; Dahle, Samuel K.

      2011-10-01

      Anthropogenic impairment of water bodies represents a global environmental concern, yet few attempts have successfully linked fish performance to thermal habitat suitability and fewer have distinguished co-varying water quality constraints. We interfaced fish bioenergetics, field measurements, and Thermal Remote Imaging to generate a spatially-explicit, high-resolution surface of fish growth potential, and next employed a structured hypothesis to detect relationships among measures of fish performance and co-varying water quality constraints. Our thermal surface of fish performance captured the amount and spatial-temporal arrangement of thermally-suitable habitat for three focal species in an extremely heterogeneous reservoir, but interpretation of this pattern was initially confounded by seasonal covariation of water residence time and water quality. Subsequent path analysis revealed that in terms of seasonal patterns in growth potential, catfish and walleye responded to temperature, positively and negatively, respectively; crappie and walleye responded to eutrophy (negatively). At the high eutrophy levels observed in this system, some desired fishes appear to suffer from excessive cultural eutrophication within the context of elevated temperatures whereas others appear to be largely unaffected or even enhanced. Our overall findings do not lead to the conclusion that this system is degraded by pollution; however, they do highlight the need to use a sensitive focal species in the process of determining allowable nutrient loading and as integrators of habitat suitability across multiple spatial and temporal scales. We provide an integrated approach useful for quantifying fish growth potential and identifying water quality constraints on fish performance at spatial scales appropriate for whole-system management.

    14. Metagenomic Analysis Indicates Epsilonproteobacteria as a Potential Cause of Microbial Corrosion in Pipelines Injected with Bisulfite.

      PubMed

      An, Dongshan; Dong, Xiaoli; An, Annie; Park, Hyung S; Strous, Marc; Voordouw, Gerrit

      2016-01-01

      Sodium bisulfite (SBS) is used as an oxygen scavenger to decrease corrosion in pipelines transporting brackish subsurface water used in the production of bitumen by steam-assisted gravity drainage. Sequencing 16S rRNA gene amplicons has indicated that SBS addition increased the fraction of the sulfate-reducing bacteria (SRB) Desulfomicrobium, as well as of Desulfocapsa, which can also grow by disproportionating sulfite into sulfide, sulfur, and sulfate. SRB use cathodic H2, formed by reduction of aqueous protons at the iron surface, or use low potential electrons from iron and aqueous protons directly for sulfate reduction. In order to reveal the effects of SBS treatment in more detail, metagenomic analysis was performed with pipe-associated solids (PAS) scraped from a pipe section upstream (PAS-616P) and downstream (PAS-821TP) of the SBS injection point. A major SBS-induced change in microbial community composition and in affiliated hynL genes for the large subunit of [NiFe] hydrogenase was the appearance of sulfur-metabolizing Epsilonproteobacteria of the genera Sulfuricurvum and Sulfurovum. These are chemolithotrophs, which oxidize sulfide or sulfur with O2 or reduce sulfur with H2. Because O2 was absent, this class likely catalyzed reduction of sulfur (S(0)) originating from the metabolism of bisulfite with cathodic H2 (or low potential electrons and aqueous protons) originating from the corrosion of steel (Fe(0)). Overall this accelerates reaction of of S(0) and Fe(0) to form FeS, making this class a potentially powerful contributor to microbial corrosion. The PAS-821TP metagenome also had increased fractions of Deltaproteobacteria including the SRB Desulfomicrobium and Desulfocapsa. Altogether, SBS increased the fraction of hydrogen-utilizing Delta- and Epsilonproteobacteria in brackish-water-transporting pipelines, potentially stimulating anaerobic pipeline corrosion if dosed in excess of the intended oxygen scavenger function.

    15. Dipole potentials indicate restructuring of the membrane interface induced by gadolinium and beryllium ions

      NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

      Ermakov, Y. A.; Averbakh, A. Z.; Yusipovich, A. I.; Sukharev, S.

      2001-01-01

      The dipole component of the membrane boundary potential, phi(d), is an integral parameter that may report on the conformational state of the lipid headgroups and their hydration. In this work, we describe an experimental approach to measurements of the dipole potential changes, Deltaphi(d), and apply it in studies of Be(2+) and Gd(3+) interactions with membranes composed of phosphatidylserine (PS), phosphatidylcholine (PC), and their mixtures. Deltaphi(d) is determined as the difference between the changes of the total boundary potential, phi(b), measured by the IFC method in planar lipid membranes and the surface potential, phi(s), determined from the electrophoretic mobility of liposomes. The Gouy-Chapman-Stern formalism, combined with the condition of mass balance, well describes the ion equilibria for these high-affinity cations. For the adsorption of Be(2+) and Gd(3+) to PC membranes, and of Mg(2+) to PS membranes, the values of Deltaphi(b) and Deltaphi(s) are the same, indicative of no change of phi(d). Binding of Gd(3+) to PS-containing membranes induces changes of phi(d) of opposite signs depending on the density of ionized PS headgroups in the bilayer. At low density, the induced Deltaphi(d) is negative (-30 mV), consistent with the effect of dehydration of the surface. At maximal density (pure PS, neutral pH), adsorption of Be(2+) or Gd(3+) induces an increase of phi(d) of 35 or 140 mV, respectively. The onset of the strong positive dipole effect on PS membranes with Gd(3+) is observed near the zero charge point and correlates with a six-fold increase of membrane tension. The observed phenomena may reflect concerted reorientation of dipole moments of PS headgroups as a result of ion adsorption and lipid condensation. Their possible implications to in-vivo effects of these high-affinity ions are discussed.

    16. Metagenomic Analysis Indicates Epsilonproteobacteria as a Potential Cause of Microbial Corrosion in Pipelines Injected with Bisulfite

      PubMed Central

      An, Dongshan; Dong, Xiaoli; An, Annie; Park, Hyung S.; Strous, Marc; Voordouw, Gerrit

      2016-01-01

      Sodium bisulfite (SBS) is used as an oxygen scavenger to decrease corrosion in pipelines transporting brackish subsurface water used in the production of bitumen by steam-assisted gravity drainage. Sequencing 16S rRNA gene amplicons has indicated that SBS addition increased the fraction of the sulfate-reducing bacteria (SRB) Desulfomicrobium, as well as of Desulfocapsa, which can also grow by disproportionating sulfite into sulfide, sulfur, and sulfate. SRB use cathodic H2, formed by reduction of aqueous protons at the iron surface, or use low potential electrons from iron and aqueous protons directly for sulfate reduction. In order to reveal the effects of SBS treatment in more detail, metagenomic analysis was performed with pipe-associated solids (PAS) scraped from a pipe section upstream (PAS-616P) and downstream (PAS-821TP) of the SBS injection point. A major SBS-induced change in microbial community composition and in affiliated hynL genes for the large subunit of [NiFe] hydrogenase was the appearance of sulfur-metabolizing Epsilonproteobacteria of the genera Sulfuricurvum and Sulfurovum. These are chemolithotrophs, which oxidize sulfide or sulfur with O2 or reduce sulfur with H2. Because O2 was absent, this class likely catalyzed reduction of sulfur (S0) originating from the metabolism of bisulfite with cathodic H2 (or low potential electrons and aqueous protons) originating from the corrosion of steel (Fe0). Overall this accelerates reaction of of S0 and Fe0 to form FeS, making this class a potentially powerful contributor to microbial corrosion. The PAS-821TP metagenome also had increased fractions of Deltaproteobacteria including the SRB Desulfomicrobium and Desulfocapsa. Altogether, SBS increased the fraction of hydrogen-utilizing Delta- and Epsilonproteobacteria in brackish-water-transporting pipelines, potentially stimulating anaerobic pipeline corrosion if dosed in excess of the intended oxygen scavenger function. PMID:26858705

    17. Using event related potentials to identify a user's behavioural intention aroused by product form design.

      PubMed

      Ding, Yi; Guo, Fu; Zhang, Xuefeng; Qu, Qingxing; Liu, Weilin

      2016-07-01

      The capacity of product form to arouse user's behavioural intention plays a decisive role in further user experience, even in purchase decision, while traditional methods rarely give a fully understanding of user experience evoked by product form, especially the feeling of anticipated use of product. Behavioural intention aroused by product form designs has not yet been investigated electrophysiologically. Hence event related potentials (ERPs) were applied to explore the process of behavioural intention when users browsed different smart phone form designs with brand and price not taken into account for mainly studying the brain activity evoked by variety of product forms. Smart phone pictures with different anticipated user experience were displayed with equiprobability randomly. Participants were asked to click the left mouse button when certain picture gave them a feeling of behavioural intention to interact with. The brain signal of each participant was recorded by Curry 7.0. The results show that pictures with an ability to arouse participants' behavioural intention for further experience can evoke enhanced N300 and LPPs (late positive potentials) in central-parietal, parietal and occipital regions. The scalp topography shows that central-parietal, parietal and occipital regions are more activated. The results indicate that the discrepancy of ERPs can reflect the neural activities of behavioural intention formed or not. Moreover, amplitude of ERPs occurred in corresponding brain areas can be used to measure user experience. The exploring of neural correlated with behavioural intention provide an accurate measurement method of user's perception and help marketers to know which product can arouse users' behavioural intention, maybe taken as an evaluating indicator of product design.

    18. WHAT INFORMATION DO WE HAVE TO IDENTIFY AND EVALUATE ECOLOGICAL METRICS AND INDICATORS THAT DIRECTLY MATTER TO PEOPLE?

      EPA Science Inventory

      The use of ecological metrics and indicators that matter directly to people makes ecological information more useful. By more useful we mean in communication with people and for social and economic analysis. While the need to specify these metrics and indicators is a view widely ...

    19. Expression Profiling Identifies Bezafibrate as Potential Therapeutic Drug for Lung Adenocarcinoma

      PubMed Central

      Liu, Xinyan; Yang, Xiaoqin; Chen, Xinmei; Zhang, Yantao; Pan, Xuebin; Wang, Guiping; Ye, Yun

      2015-01-01

      Drug-induced gene expression patterns that invert disease profiles have recently been illustrated to be a new strategy for drug-repositioning. In the present study, we validated this approach and focused on prediction of novel drugs for lung adenocarcinoma (AC), for which there is a pressing need to find novel therapeutic compounds. Firstly, connectivity map (CMap) analysis computationally predicted bezafibrate as a putative compound against lung AC. Then this hypothesis was verified by in vitro assays of anti-proliferation and cell cycle arrest. In silico docking evidence indicated that bezafibrate could target cyclin dependent kinase 2(CDK2), which regulates progression through the cell cycle. Furthermore, we found that bezafibrate can significantly down-regulate the expression of CDK2 mRNA and p-CDK2. Using a nude mice xenograft model, we also found that bezafibrate could inhibit tumor growth of lung AC in vivo. In conclusion, this study proposed bezafibrate as a potential therapeutic option for lung AC patients, illustrating the potential of in silico drug screening. PMID:26535062

    20. Spontaneously hypertensive rats: a potential model to identify drugs for treatment of learning disorders.

      PubMed

      Meneses, A; Hong, E

      1998-04-01

      Spontaneously hypertensive rats (SHR) of 3 to 12 months of age learned and retrieved less information than normotensive Wistar-Kyoto rats (WKY), although no difference was found with animals from 18 and 24 months of age. The combined influence of hypertension and aging had an additive detrimental effect on cognitive functions. Notwithstanding these deficiencies in learning and memory, SHR have seldom been used as a model in the screening of drugs with therapeutic potential for treatment of disorders of cognitive processes. Moreover, the calcium channel blocker nimodipine has beneficial effects on learning in both aged and hypertensive animals and humans. However, no attempt has been made to investigate whether nimodipine can reverse the additive deleterious effects of aging and hypertension in the same subject. We recently reported that deteriorated animals (middle-aged and/or hypertensive) chronically treated with nimodipine (via osmotic minipumps) exhibit higher learning scores. This information indicates that nimodipine can reverse the impairing effects of either aging or hypertension on learning; the presence of the two conditions, however, produces a severe impairment that can be partially reversed by this drug. Therefore, we propose that mature and middle-aged SHR represent a model for the screening of potentially useful drugs in the treatment of learning disorders, probably associated with hypertension and/or aging. Nevertheless, it must be remembered that the SHR is a genetic model and the appearance of neural disturbances could be a parallel genetic phenomenon and not necessarily or exclusively related to hypertension per se.

    1. Self Potential as an indicator of biogeochemical transformations during active hydrocarbon biodegradation processes

      NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

      Ntarlagiannis, D.; Heenan, J. W.; Slater, L. D.; Atekwana, E. A.; Rossbach, S.; Beaver, C. L.; Revil, A.; Bekins, B. A.

      2015-12-01

      Self potential (SP) signals, collected from borehole installation at the National Crude Oil Spill Fate and Natural Attenuation Research Site at Bemidji (MN), show a strong bipolar anomaly centered around the smear zone where intense bioremediation is known to occur. Magnetic susceptibility (MS) and geochemical analysis of soil cores confirmed the presence of a magnetite layer at the smear zone. The observed anomaly is consistent with the operation of a bio-geobattery centered on the conductive magnetite. This bio-geobattery is not permanent, but instead periodically shuts down, while at other times it reaches a maximum potential difference of ~ 70mV. The transient operation of the bio-geobattery appears to be associated with changes in the gradient of the redox species in the vicinity of the magnetite layer. Microbiological analysis of the soil cores identified microbial species that can support the operation of a bio-geobattery with the anode located below the magnetite, and the cathode above the magnetite layer. Environmental conditions local to the smear zone (e.g. water table change, rain water infiltration) seem to change the microbial dynamics around the magnetite layer resulting in redox gradient changes, essentially turning 'on' and 'off' the bio-geobattery. This work provides strong field-scale evidence for the functioning of a biogeobattery resulting from long-term biodegradation of a crude oil spill.

    2. Identifying Key Issues and Potential Solutions for Integrated Arrival, Departure, Surface Operations by Surveying Stakeholder Preferences

      NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

      Aponso, Bimal; Coppenbarger, Richard A.; Jung, Yoon; Quon, Leighton; Lohr, Gary; O’Connor, Neil; Engelland, Shawn

      2015-01-01

      NASA's Aeronautics Research Mission Directorate (ARMD) collaborates with the FAA and industry to provide concepts and technologies that enhance the transition to the next-generation air-traffic management system (NextGen). To facilitate this collaboration, ARMD has a series of Airspace Technology Demonstration (ATD) sub-projects that develop, demonstrate, and transitions NASA technologies and concepts for implementation in the National Airspace System (NAS). The second of these sub-projects, ATD-2, is focused on the potential benefits to NAS stakeholders of integrated arrival, departure, surface (IADS) operations. To determine the project objectives and assess the benefits of a potential solution, NASA surveyed NAS stakeholders to understand the existing issues in arrival, departure, and surface operations, and the perceived benefits of better integrating these operations. NASA surveyed a broad cross-section of stakeholders representing the airlines, airports, air-navigation service providers, and industry providers of NAS tools. The survey indicated that improving the predictability of flight times (schedules) could improve efficiency in arrival, departure, and surface operations. Stakeholders also mentioned the need for better strategic and tactical information on traffic constraints as well as better information sharing and a coupled collaborative planning process that allows stakeholders to coordinate IADS operations. To assess the impact of a potential solution, NASA sketched an initial departure scheduling concept and assessed its viability by surveying a select group of stakeholders for a second time. The objective of the departure scheduler was to enable flights to move continuously from gate to cruise with minimal interruption in a busy metroplex airspace environment using strategic and tactical scheduling enhanced by collaborative planning between airlines and service providers. The stakeholders agreed that this departure concept could improve schedule

    3. RNA sequencing reveals differentially expressed genes as potential diagnostic and prognostic indicators of gallbladder carcinoma

      PubMed Central

      Jiang, Mingming; Fang, Meng; Ji, Jun; Wang, Aihua; Wang, Mengmeng; Jiang, Xiaoqing; Gao, Chunfang

      2015-01-01

      Gallbladder carcinoma (GBC) is a rare tumor with a dismal survival rate overall. Hence, there is an urgent need for exploring more specific and sensitive biomarkers for the diagnosis and treatment of GBC. At first, amplified total RNAs from two paired GBC tumors and adjacent non-tumorous tissues (ANTTs) were subjected to RNA sequencing. 161 genes were identified differentially expressed between tumors and ANTTs. Functional enrichment analysis indicated that the up-regulated genes in tumor were primarily associated with signaling molecules and enzyme modulators, and mainly involved in cell cycles and pathways in cancer. Twelve differentially expressed genes (DEGs) were further confirmed in another independent cohort of 35 GBC patients. Expression levels of BIRC5, TK1, TNNT1 and MMP9 were found to be positively related to postoperative relapse. There was also a significant correlation between BIRC5 expression and tumor-node-metastasis (TNM) stage. Besides, we observed a positive correlation between serum CA19–9 concentration and the expression levels of TNNT1, MMP9 and CLIC3. Survival analysis revealed that GBC patients with high TK1 and MMP9 expression levels had worse prognosis. These identified DEGs might not only be promising biomarkers for GBC diagnosis and prognosis, but also expedite the discovery of novel therapeutic strategies. PMID:25970782

    4. Conserved B-Cell Epitopes among Human Bocavirus Species Indicate Potential Diagnostic Targets

      PubMed Central

      Wang, Yaying; Zhou, Hongli; Wu, Chao; Paranhos-Baccalà, Gláucia; Vernet, Guy; Guo, Li; Wang, Jianwei

      2014-01-01

      Background Human bocavirus species 1–4 (HBoV1–4) have been associated with respiratory and enteric infections in children. However, the immunological mechanisms in response to HBoV infections are not fully understood. Though previous studies have shown cross-reactivities between HBoV species, the epitopes responsible for this phenomenon remain unknown. In this study, we used genomic and immunologic approaches to identify the reactive epitopes conserved across multiple HBoV species and explored their potential as the basis of a novel diagnostic test for HBoVs. Methodology/Principal Findings We generated HBoV1–3 VP2 gene fragment phage display libraries (GFPDLs) and used these libraries to analyze mouse antisera against VP2 protein of HBoV1, 2, and 3, and human sera positive for HBoVs. Using this approach, we mapped four epitope clusters of HBoVs and identified two immunodominant peptides–P1 (1MSDTDIQDQQPDTVDAPQNT20), and P2 (162EHAYPNASHPWDEDVMPDL180)–that are conserved among HBoV1–4. To confirm epitope immunogenicity, we immunized mice with the immunodominant P1 and P2 peptides identified in our screen and found that they elicited high titer antibodies in mice. These two antibodies could only recognize the VP2 of HBoV 1–4 in Western blot assays, rather than those of the two other parvoviruses human parvovirus B19 and human parvovirus 4 (PARV4). Based on our findings, we evaluated epitope-based peptide-IgM ELISAs as potential diagnostic tools for HBoVs IgM antibodies. We found that the P1+P2-IgM ELISA showed a higher sensitivity and specificity in HBoVs IgM detection than the assays using a single peptide. Conclusions/Significance The identification of the conserved B-cell epitopes among human bocavirus species contributes to our understanding of immunological cross-reactivities of HBoVs, and provides important insights for the development of HBoV diagnostic tools. PMID:24475201

    5. iTRAQ-Based Quantitative Proteomics Identifies Potential Regulatory Proteins Involved in Chicken Eggshell Brownness

      PubMed Central

      Wu, Guiqin; Shi, Fengying; Liu, Aiqiao; Yang, Ning

      2016-01-01

      Brown eggs are popular in many countries and consumers regard eggshell brownness as an important indicator of egg quality. However, the potential regulatory proteins and detailed molecular mechanisms regulating eggshell brownness have yet to be clearly defined. In the present study, we performed quantitative proteomics analysis with iTRAQ technology in the shell gland epithelium of hens laying dark and light brown eggs to investigate the candidate proteins and molecular mechanisms underlying variation in chicken eggshell brownness. The results indicated 147 differentially expressed proteins between these two groups, among which 65 and 82 proteins were significantly up-regulated in the light and dark groups, respectively. Functional analysis indicated that in the light group, the down-regulated iron-sulfur cluster assembly protein (Iba57) would decrease the synthesis of protoporphyrin IX; furthermore, the up-regulated protein solute carrier family 25 (mitochondrial carrier; adenine nucleotide translocator), member 5 (SLC25A5) and down-regulated translocator protein (TSPO) would lead to increased amounts of protoporphyrin IX transported into the mitochondria matrix to form heme with iron, which is supplied by ovotransferrin protein (TF). In other words, chickens from the light group produce less protoporphyrin IX, which is mainly used for heme synthesis. Therefore, the exported protoporphyrin IX available for eggshell deposition and brownness is reduced in the light group. The current study provides valuable information to elucidate variation of chicken eggshell brownness, and demonstrates the feasibility and sensitivity of iTRAQ-based quantitative proteomics analysis in providing useful insights into the molecular mechanisms underlying brown eggshell pigmentation. PMID:28006025

    6. Antioxidant Potential of a Polyherbal Antimalarial as an Indicator of Its Therapeutic Value

      PubMed Central

      Arrey Tarkang, Protus; Nwachiban Atchan, Achille Parfait; Kuiate, Jules-Roger; Okalebo, Faith Apoelot; Guantai, Anastasia Nkatha; Agbor, Gabriel Agbor

      2013-01-01

      Nefang is a polyherbal product composed of Mangifera indica (bark and leaf), Psidium guajava, Carica papaya, Cymbopogon citratus, Citrus sinensis, and Ocimum gratissimum (leaves), used for the treatment of malaria. Compounds with antioxidant activity are believed to modulate plasmodial infection. Antioxidant activity of the constituent aqueous plants extracts, in vitro, was evaluated using the 2,2-diphenyl-1-picrylhydrazyl (DPPH), total phenolic content (TPC), and ferric reducing antioxidant power (FRAP) methods and, in vivo, Nefang (100 and 500 mg kg−1) activity was evaluated in carbon tetrachloride-induced oxidative stressed Wistar rats. Superoxide dismutase, catalase activities, and lipid peroxidation by the malondialdehyde and total proteins assays were carried out. P. guajava, M. indica leaf, and bark extracts had the highest antioxidant properties in all three assays, with no statistically significant difference. Rats treated with the carbon tetrachloride had a statistically significant decrease in levels of triglycerides, superoxide dismutase, and catalase (P < 0.05) and increase in malondialdehyde activity, total protein levels, and liver and renal function markers, whereas rats treated with Nefang showed increased levels in the former and dose-dependent decrease towards normal levels in the later. These results reveal the constituent plants of Nefang that contribute to its in vivo antioxidant potential. This activity is a good indication of the therapeutic potential of Nefang. PMID:24454347

    7. Antioxidant potential of a polyherbal antimalarial as an indicator of its therapeutic value.

      PubMed

      Arrey Tarkang, Protus; Nwachiban Atchan, Achille Parfait; Kuiate, Jules-Roger; Okalebo, Faith Apoelot; Guantai, Anastasia Nkatha; Agbor, Gabriel Agbor

      2013-01-01

      Nefang is a polyherbal product composed of Mangifera indica (bark and leaf), Psidium guajava, Carica papaya, Cymbopogon citratus, Citrus sinensis, and Ocimum gratissimum (leaves), used for the treatment of malaria. Compounds with antioxidant activity are believed to modulate plasmodial infection. Antioxidant activity of the constituent aqueous plants extracts, in vitro, was evaluated using the 2,2-diphenyl-1-picrylhydrazyl (DPPH), total phenolic content (TPC), and ferric reducing antioxidant power (FRAP) methods and, in vivo, Nefang (100 and 500 mg kg(-1)) activity was evaluated in carbon tetrachloride-induced oxidative stressed Wistar rats. Superoxide dismutase, catalase activities, and lipid peroxidation by the malondialdehyde and total proteins assays were carried out. P. guajava, M. indica leaf, and bark extracts had the highest antioxidant properties in all three assays, with no statistically significant difference. Rats treated with the carbon tetrachloride had a statistically significant decrease in levels of triglycerides, superoxide dismutase, and catalase (P < 0.05) and increase in malondialdehyde activity, total protein levels, and liver and renal function markers, whereas rats treated with Nefang showed increased levels in the former and dose-dependent decrease towards normal levels in the later. These results reveal the constituent plants of Nefang that contribute to its in vivo antioxidant potential. This activity is a good indication of the therapeutic potential of Nefang.

    8. Phenology of Dasineura oxycoccana (Diptera: Cecidomyiidae) on cranberry and blueberry indicates potential for gene flow.

      PubMed

      Cook, Melissa A; Fitzpatrick, Sheila M; Roitberg, Bernard D

      2012-08-01

      Dasineura oxycoccana (Johnson) (Diptera: Cecidomyiidae) is a pest of cranberry, Vaccinium macrocarpon (Aiton) (Ericales: Ericaceae), and highbush blueberry, Vaccinium corymbosum (L.) (Ericales: Ericaceae), in North America. In British Columbia, Canada, D. oxycoccana was first found on highbush blueberry in 1991 and then on cranberry seven years later. Because many cranberry and highbush blueberry farms are adjacent to one another, we hypothesized that D. oxycoccana was moving from highbush blueberry onto cranberry. Cranberry and highbush blueberry differ in phenology, and adaptation to these different phenologies may result in host races or cryptic species on these two crops. We recognized the alternative hypothesis that D. oxycoccana had arrived as immature stages with cranberry vines imported from another region of North America. During spring and summer, we recorded the phenology of D. oxycoccana and the development of plant shoots from three cranberry and three highbush blueberry farms to determine whether the opportunity exists for successful movement of D. oxycoccana between the two crops. Our results show that D. oxycoccana from cranberry and highbush blueberry overlap in phenology for much of the season, indicating a high potential for movement and gene flow. However, differences were seen in number of larvae per shoot, location of pupae, and heat unit accumulation during larval development suggesting that instead there may be the potential for host race or cryptic species formation.

    9. Potential for early warning of maalria in India using NOAA-AVHRR based vegetation health indices

      NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

      Dhiman, R. C.; Kogan, Felix; Singh, Neeru; Singh, R. P.; Dash, A. P.

      Malaria is still a major public health problem in India with about 1 82 million cases annually and 1000 deaths As per World Health Organization WHO estimates about 1 3 million Disability Adjusted Life Years DALYs are lost annually due to malaria in India Central peninsular region of India is prone to malaria outbreaks Meteorological parameters changes in ecological conditions development of resistance in mosquito vectors development of resistance in Plasmodium falciparum parasite and lack of surveillance are the likely reasons of outbreaks Based on satellite data and climatic factors efforts have been made to develop Early Warning System EWS in Africa but there is no headway in this regard in India In order to find out the potential of NOAA satellite AVHRR derived Vegetation Condition Index VCI Temperature Condition Index TCI and a cumulative indicator Vegetation Health Index VHI were attempted to find out their potential for development of EWS Studies were initiated by analysing epidemiological data of malaria vis-a-vis VCI TCI and VHI from Bikaner and Jaisalmer districts of Rajasthan and Tumkur and Raichur districts of Karnataka Correlation coefficients between VCI and monthly malaria cases for epidemic years were computed Positive correlation 0 67 has been found with one-month lag between VCI and malaria incidence in respect of Tumkur while a negative correlation with TCI -0 45 is observed In Bikaner VCI is found to be negatively related -0 71 with malaria cases in epidemic year of 1994 Weekly

    10. National valuation of monarch butterflies indicates an untapped potential for incentive-based conservation

      USGS Publications Warehouse

      Diffendorfer, Jay E.; Loomis, John B.; Ries, Leslie; Oberhauser, Karen; Semmens, Darius; Semmens, Brice; Butterfield, Bruce; Bagstad, Ken; Goldstein, Josh; Wiederholt, Ruscena; Mattsson, Brady; Thogmartin, Wayne E.

      2013-01-01

      The annual migration of monarch butterflies (Danaus plexippus) has high cultural value and recent surveys indicate monarch populations are declining. Protecting migratory species is complex because they cross international borders and depend on multiple regions. Understanding how much, and where, humans place value on migratory species can facilitate market-based conservation approaches. We performed a contingent valuation study of monarchs to understand the potential for such approaches to fund monarch conservation. The survey asked U.S. respondents about the money they would spend, or have spent, growing monarch-friendly plants, and the amount they would donate to monarch conservation organizations. Combining planting payments and donations, the survey indicated U.S. households valued monarchs as a total one-time payment of $4.78–$6.64 billion, levels similar to many endangered vertebrate species. The financial contribution of even a small percentage of households through purchases or donations could generate new funding for monarch conservation through market-based approaches.

    11. SERPINA4 is a novel independent prognostic indicator and a potential therapeutic target for colorectal cancer

      PubMed Central

      Sun, Hui-Min; Mi, Yu-Shuai; Yu, Fu-Dong; Han, Yang; Liu, Xi-Sheng; Lu, Su; Zhang, Yu; Zhao, Sen-Lin; Ye, Ling; Liu, Ting-Ting; Yang, Dao-Hua; Sun, Xiao-Feng; Qin, Xue-Bin; Zhou, Zong-Guang; Tang, Hua-Mei; Peng, Zhi-Hai

      2016-01-01

      Serpina family A member 4 (SERPINA4), also known as kallistatin, exerts important effects in inhibiting tumor growth and angiogenesis in many malignancies. However, the precise role of SERPINA4 in CRC has not been fully elucidated. The present study aimed to investigate the expression of SERPINA4 and its clinical significance in CRC. Quantitative real-time polymerase chain reaction (qRT-PCR) and western blot analyses showed that the mRNA and protein expression of SERPINA4 in colorectal cancer (CRC) specimens was significantly decreased than that in adjacent normal mucosa. Immunohistochemistry (IHC) was conducted to characterize the expression pattern of SERPINA4 by using a tissue microarray (TMA) containing 327 archived paraffin-embedded CRC specimens. Statistical analyses revealed that decreased SERPINA4 expression was significantly associated with invasion depth, nodal involvement, distant metastasis, American Joint Committee on Cancer (AJCC) stage, and tumor differentiation. SERPINA4 was also an independent prognostic indicator of disease-free survival and overall survival in patients with CRC. Furthermore, the impact of altered SERPINA4 expression on CRC cells was analyzed with a series of in vitro and in vivo assays. The results demonstrated that SERPINA4 significantly inhibits malignant tumor progression and serves as a novel prognostic indicator and a potential therapeutic target for CRC. PMID:27648355

    12. Albumin Binding Function: The Potential Earliest Indicator for Liver Function Damage

      PubMed Central

      Ge, Penglei; Yang, Huayu; Lu, Jingfen; Liao, Wenjun; Du, Shunda; Xu, Yingli; Xu, Haifeng; Lu, Xin; Sang, Xinting; Zhong, Shouxian; Huang, Jiefu

      2016-01-01

      Background. Currently there is no indicator that can evaluate actual liver lesion for early stages of viral hepatitis, nonalcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD), and cirrhosis. Aim of this study was to investigate if albumin binding function could better reflect liver function in these liver diseases. Methods. An observational study was performed on 193 patients with early NAFLD, viral hepatitis, and cirrhosis. Cirrhosis patients were separated according to Child-Pugh score into A, B, and C subgroup. Albumin metal ion binding capacity (Ischemia-modified albumin transformed, IMAT) and fatty acid binding capacity (total binding sites, TBS) were detected. Results. Both IMAT and TBS were significantly decreased in patients with NAFLD and early hepatitis. In hepatitis group, they declined prior to changes of liver enzymes. IMAT was significantly higher in cirrhosis Child-Pugh class A group than hepatitis patients and decreased in Child-Pugh class B and class C patients. Both IMAT/albumin and TBS/albumin decreased significantly in hepatitis and NAFLD group patients. Conclusions. This is the first study to discover changes of albumin metal ion and fatty acid binding capacities prior to conventional biomarkers for liver damage in early stage of liver diseases. They may become potential earliest sensitive indicators for liver function evaluation. PMID:28101103

    13. Glycopatterns of Urinary Protein as New Potential Diagnosis Indicators for Diabetic Nephropathy

      PubMed Central

      Zhu, Hanyu; Liu, Moyan; Zhong, Yaogang; Shu, Jian; Fu, Xinle; Cai, Guangyan; Chen, Xiangmei; Geng, Wenjia; Yang, Xiaoli; Wu, Minghui

      2017-01-01

      Diabetic nephropathy is a major cause of chronic kidney disease and end-stage kidney disease. However, so little is known about alterations of the glycopatterns in urine with the development of diabetic nephropathy. Presently, we interrogated glycopatterns in urine specimens using a lectin microarray. The results showed that expression levels of Siaα2-6Gal/GalNAc recognized by SNA exhibited significantly increased tendency with the development of diabetic nephropathy; moreover, SNA blotting indicated glycoproteins (90 kDa, 70 kDa, and 40 kDa) in urine may contribute to this alteration. Furthermore, the glycopatterns of (GlcNAc)2–4 recognized by STL exhibited difference between diabetic and nondiabetic nephropathy. The results of urinary protein microarray fabricated by another 48 urine specimens also indicated (GlcNAc)2–4 is a potential indictor to differentiate the patients with diabetic nephropathy from nondiabetic nephropathy. Furtherly, STL blotting showed that the 50 kDa glycoproteins were correlated with this alteration. In conclusion, our data provide pivotal information to monitor the development of diabetic nephropathy and distinguish between diabetic nephropathy and nondiabetic renal disease based on precise alterations of glycopatterns in urinary proteins, but further studies are needed in this regard.

    14. A genetic database can be utilized to identify potential biomarkers for biphenotypic hepatocellular carcinoma-cholangiocarcinoma

      PubMed Central

      Mohan, Sachin; Grewal, Navjot; Elfant, Adam B.; Judge, Thomas A.

      2016-01-01

      Background Biphenotypic hepatocellular carcinoma-cholangiocarcinoma (HCC-CC) is an uncommon primary liver neoplasm. Due to limitations in radiologic imaging for the diagnosis of this condition, biopsy is a common method for diagnosis, which is invasive and holds potential complications. To identify alternative means for obtaining the diagnosis and assessing the prognosis of this condition, we evaluated biomarkers for biphenotypic HCC-CC using a genetic database. Methods To evaluate the genetic associations with each variable we utilized GeneCards®, The Human Gene Compendium (http://www.genecards.org). The results of our search were entered into the Pathway Interaction Database from the National Cancer Institute (PID-NCI) (http://pid.nci.nih.gov), to generate a biomolecule interaction map. Results The results of our query yielded 690 genes for HCC, 98 genes for CC and 50 genes for HCC-CC. Genes depicted in this analysis demonstrate the role of hormonal regulation, embryonic development, cell surface adhesion, cytokeratin stability, mucin production, metalloproteinase regulation, Ras signaling, metabolism and apoptosis. Examples of previously described markers included hepatocyte growth factor (HGF), mesenchymal epithelial transition (MET) and Kirsten rat sarcoma viral oncogene homolog (KRAS). Novel markers included phosphatidylinositol-4,5-bisphosphate 3-kinase, catalytic subunit alpha (PIK3CA), GPC3, choline kinase alpha (CHKA), prostaglandin-endoperoxide synthase 2 (PTGS2), telomerase reverse transcriptase (TERT), myeloid cell leukemia 1 (MCL1) and N-acetyltransferase 2 (NAT2). Conclusions GeneCards is a useful research tool in the genetic analysis of low frequency malignancies. Utilizing this tool we identified several biomarkers are methods for diagnosing HCC-CC. Finally, utilizing these methods, HCC-CC was found to be predominantly a subtype of CC. PMID:27563447

    15. Identify potential drugs for cardiovascular diseases caused by stress-induced genes in vascular smooth muscle cells

      PubMed Central

      Ciou, Jin-Shuei; Chen, Shun-Tsung; Chung, Yi; Tsai, Jeffrey J. P.; Kurubanjerdjit, Nilubon

      2016-01-01

      Background Abnormal proliferation of vascular smooth muscle cells (VSMC) is a major cause of cardiovascular diseases (CVDs). Many studies suggest that vascular injury triggers VSMC dedifferentiation, which results in VSMC changes from a contractile to a synthetic phenotype; however, the underlying molecular mechanisms are still unclear. Methods In this study, we examined how VSMC responds under mechanical stress by using time-course microarray data. A three-phase study was proposed to investigate the stress-induced differentially expressed genes (DEGs) in VSMC. First, DEGs were identified by using the moderated t-statistics test. Second, more DEGs were inferred by using the Gaussian Graphical Model (GGM). Finally, the topological parameters-based method and cluster analysis approach were employed to predict the last batch of DEGs. To identify the potential drugs for vascular diseases involve VSMC proliferation, the drug-gene interaction database, Connectivity Map (cMap) was employed. Success of the predictions were determined using in-vitro data, i.e. MTT and clonogenic assay. Results Based on the differential expression calculation, at least 23 DEGs were found, and the findings were qualified by previous studies on VSMC. The results of gene set enrichment analysis indicated that the most often found enriched biological processes are cell-cycle-related processes. Furthermore, more stress-induced genes, well supported by literature, were found by applying graph theory to the gene association network (GAN). Finally, we showed that by processing the cMap input queries with a cluster algorithm, we achieved a substantial increase in the number of potential drugs with experimental IC50 measurements. With this novel approach, we have not only successfully identified the DEGs, but also improved the DEGs prediction by performing the topological and cluster analysis. Moreover, the findings are remarkably validated and in line with the literature. Furthermore, the cMap and

    16. Cheap and Nasty? The Potential Perils of Using Management Costs to Identify Global Conservation Priorities

      PubMed Central

      McCreless, Erin; Visconti, Piero; Carwardine, Josie; Wilcox, Chris; Smith, Robert J.

      2013-01-01

      The financial cost of biodiversity conservation varies widely around the world and such costs should be considered when identifying countries to best focus conservation investments. Previous global prioritizations have been based on global models for protected area management costs, but this metric may be related to other factors that negatively influence the effectiveness and social impacts of conservation. Here we investigate such relationships and first show that countries with low predicted costs are less politically stable. Local support and capacity can mitigate the impacts of such instability, but we also found that these countries have less civil society involvement in conservation. Therefore, externally funded projects in these countries must rely on government agencies for implementation. This can be problematic, as our analyses show that governments in countries with low predicted costs score poorly on indices of corruption, bureaucratic quality and human rights. Taken together, our results demonstrate that using national-level estimates for protected area management costs to set global conservation priorities is simplistic, as projects in apparently low-cost countries are less likely to succeed and more likely to have negative impacts on people. We identify the need for an improved approach to develop global conservation cost metrics that better capture the true costs of avoiding or overcoming such problems. Critically, conservation scientists must engage with practitioners to better understand and implement context-specific solutions. This approach assumes that measures of conservation costs, like measures of conservation value, are organization specific, and would bring a much-needed focus on reducing the negative impacts of conservation to develop projects that benefit people and biodiversity. PMID:24260502

    17. Identifying potentially preventable emergency department visits by nursing home residents in the United States

      PubMed Central

      Burke, Robert E.; Rooks, Sean P.; Levy, Cari; Schwartz, Robert; Ginde, Adit A.

      2015-01-01

      Objectives To identify and describe potentially preventable emergency department (ED) visits by nursing home (NH) residents in the United States. These visits are important because they are common, frequently lead to hospitalization, and can be associated with significant cost to the patient and the health care system. Design Retrospective analysis of the 2005-2010 National Hospital Ambulatory Care Survey (NHAMCS), comparing ED visits by nursing home residents that did not lead to hospital admission (potentially preventable) to those that led to admission (less likely preventable). Setting Nationally representative sample of United States EDs; Federal hospitals and hospitals with less than six beds were excluded. Participants Older (age ≥65 years) nursing home residents with an ED visit during this time period. Measurements Patient demographics, ED visit information including testing performed, interventions (both procedures and medications) provided, and diagnoses treated. Results Older NH residents accounted for 3,857 of 208,956 ED visits during the time period of interest (1.8%). When weighted to be nationally representative, these represent 13.97 million ED visits, equivalent to 1.8 ED visits annually per NH resident in the United States. More than half of visits (53.5%) did not lead to hospital admission; of those discharged from the ED, 62.8% had normal vital signs on presentation and 18.9% did not have any diagnostic testing prior to ED discharge. Injuries were 1.78 times more likely to be discharged than admitted (44.8% versus 25.3%, respectively, p<0.001), while infections were 2.06 times as likely to be admitted as discharged (22.9% versus 11.1%, respectively). CT scans were performed in 25.4% and 30.1% of older NH residents who were discharged from the ED and admitted to the hospital, respectively, and more than 70% of these were CTs of the head. NH residents received centrally acting, sedating medications prior to ED discharge in 9.4% of visits

    18. What data should we collect? A framework for identifying indicators of ecosystem contributions to human well being

      EPA Science Inventory

      Ecological data enable a range of policy relevant analyses; the right ecological data enable ecosystem analyses to be linked to human well being making them more relevant and useful. The challenge we address is how to identify the right data. Our approach, founded on the “final e...

    19. Potential High-Temperature Shape-Memory Alloys Identified in the Ti(Ni,Pt) System

      NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

      Noebe, Ronald D.; Biles, Tiffany A.; Garg, Anita; Nathal, Michael V.

      2004-01-01

      "Shape memory" is a unique property of certain alloys that, when deformed (within certain strain limits) at low temperatures, will remember and recover to their original predeformed shape upon heating. It occurs when an alloy is deformed in the low-temperature martensitic phase and is then heated above its transformation temperature back to an austenitic state. As the material passes through this solid-state phase transformation on heating, it also recovers its original shape. This behavior is widely exploited, near room temperature, in commercially available NiTi alloys for connectors, couplings, valves, actuators, stents, and other medical and dental devices. In addition, there are limitless applications in the aerospace, automotive, chemical processing, and many other industries for materials that exhibit this type of shape-memory behavior at higher temperatures. But for high temperatures, there are currently no commercial shape-memory alloys. Although there are significant challenges to the development of high-temperature shape-memory alloys, at the NASA Glenn Research Center we have identified a series of alloy compositions in the Ti-Ni-Pt system that show great promise as potential high-temperature shape-memory materials.

    20. Identifying Hydrologic Flowpaths on Arctic Hillslopes Using Electrical Resistivity and Self Potential

      NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

      Voytek, E.; Rushlow, C. R.; Godsey, S.; Singha, K.

      2015-12-01

      Shallow subsurface flow is a dominant process controlling hillslope runoff generation, soil development, and solute reaction and transport. Despite their importance, the location and geometry of flowpaths are difficult to determine. In arctic environments, shallow subsurface flowpaths are limited to a thin zone of seasonal thaw above continuous permafrost, which is traditionally assumed to mimic to surface topography. Here we use a combined approach of electrical resistivity imaging (ERI) and self-potential measurements (SP) to map shallow subsurface flowpaths in and around water tracks, drainage features common to arctic hillslopes. ERI measurements delineate thawed zones in the subsurface that control flowpaths, while SP is sensitive to groundwater flow. We find that areas of low electrical resistivity in the water tracks are deeper than manual thaw depth estimates and variations from surface topography. This finding suggests that traditional techniques significantly underestimate active layer thaw and the extent of the flowpath network on arctic hillslopes. SP measurements identify complex 3-D flowpaths in the thawed zone. Our results lay the groundwork for investigations into the seasonal dynamics, hydrologic connectivity, and climate sensitivity of spatially distributed flowpath networks on arctic hillslopes.

    1. Identifying populations potentially exposed to agricultural pesticides using remote sensing and a Geographic Information System

      USGS Publications Warehouse

      Ward, M.H.; Nuckols, J.R.; Weigel, S. J.; Cantor, K.P.; Miller, Roger S.

      2000-01-01

      Pesticides used in agriculture may cause adverse health effects among the population living near agricultural areas. However, identifying the populations most likely to be exposed is difficult. We conducted a feasibility study to determine whether satellite imagery could be used to reconstruct historical crop patterns. We used historical Farm Service Agency records as a source of ground reference data to classify a late summer 1984 satellite image into crop species in a three-county area in south central Nebraska. Residences from a population-based epidemiologic study of non-Hodgkin lymphoma were located on the crop maps using a geographic information system (GIS). Corn, soybeans, sorghum, and alfalfa were the major crops grown in the study area. Eighty-five percent of residences could be located, and of these 22% had one of the four major crops within 500 m of the residence, an intermediate distance for the range of drift effects from pesticides applied in agriculture. We determined the proximity of residences to specific crop species and calculated crop-specific probabilities of pesticide use based on available data. This feasibility study demonstrated that remote sensing data and historical records on crop location can be used to create historical crop maps. The crop pesticides that were likely to have been applied can be estimated when information about crop-specific pesticide use is available. Using a GIS, zones of potential exposure to agricultural pesticides and proximity measures can be determined for residences in a study.

    2. Mitochondrial Membrane Potential Identifies Cells with Enhanced Stemness for Cellular Therapy.

      PubMed

      Sukumar, Madhusudhanan; Liu, Jie; Mehta, Gautam U; Patel, Shashank J; Roychoudhuri, Rahul; Crompton, Joseph G; Klebanoff, Christopher A; Ji, Yun; Li, Peng; Yu, Zhiya; Whitehill, Greg D; Clever, David; Eil, Robert L; Palmer, Douglas C; Mitra, Suman; Rao, Mahadev; Keyvanfar, Keyvan; Schrump, David S; Wang, Ena; Marincola, Francesco M; Gattinoni, Luca; Leonard, Warren J; Muranski, Pawel; Finkel, Toren; Restifo, Nicholas P

      2016-01-12

      Long-term survival and antitumor immunity of adoptively transferred CD8(+) T cells is dependent on their metabolic fitness, but approaches to isolate therapeutic T cells based on metabolic features are not well established. Here we utilized a lipophilic cationic dye tetramethylrhodamine methyl ester (TMRM) to identify and isolate metabolically robust T cells based on their mitochondrial membrane potential (ΔΨm). Comprehensive metabolomic and gene expression profiling demonstrated global features of improved metabolic fitness in low-ΔΨm-sorted CD8(+) T cells. Transfer of these low-ΔΨm T cells was associated with superior long-term in vivo persistence and an enhanced capacity to eradicate established tumors compared with high-ΔΨm cells. Use of ΔΨm-based sorting to enrich for cells with superior metabolic features was observed in CD8(+), CD4(+) T cell subsets, and long-term hematopoietic stem cells. This metabolism-based approach to cell selection may be broadly applicable to therapies involving the transfer of HSC or lymphocytes for the treatment of viral-associated illnesses and cancer.

    3. Transcriptome sequencing of HER2-positive breast cancer stem cells identifies potential prognostic marker.

      PubMed

      Lei, Bo; Zhang, Xian-Yu; Zhou, Jia-Peng; Mu, Guan-Nan; Li, Yi-Wen; Zhang, You-Xue; Pang, Da

      2016-11-01

      In cancer stem cell theory, breast cancer stem cells (BCSCs) are postulated to be the root cause of recurrence and metastasis in breast cancer. Discovery of new biomarkers and development of BCSC-targeted therapy are practical issues that urgently need to be addressed in the clinic. However, few breast cancer stem cell targets are known. Given that there are few BCSCs, performing transcriptome sequencing on them thus far has not been possible. With the emergence of single-cell sequencing technology, we have now undertaken such a study. We prepared single-cell suspensions, which were sorted using flow cytometry from breast tumor tissue and adjacent normal breast tissue from two HER2-positive patients. We obtained BCSCs, breast cancer cells, mammary cells, and CD44(+) mammary cells. Transcriptome sequencing was then performed on these four cell types. Using bioinformatics, we identified 404 differentially expressed BCSC genes from the HER2-positive tumors and preliminary explored transcriptome characteristics of BCSCs. Finally, by querying a public database, we found that CA12 was a novel prognostic biomarker in HER2-positive breast cancer, which also had prognostic value in all breast cancer types. In conclusion, our results suggest that CA12 may be associated with BCSCs, especially HER2-positive BCSCs, and is a potential novel therapeutic target and biomarker.

    4. Urine metabolomic analysis identifies potential biomarkers and pathogenic pathways in kidney cancer.

      PubMed

      Kim, Kyoungmi; Taylor, Sandra L; Ganti, Sheila; Guo, Lining; Osier, Michael V; Weiss, Robert H

      2011-05-01

      Kidney cancer is the seventh most common cancer in the Western world, its incidence is increasing, and it is frequently metastatic at presentation, at which stage patient survival statistics are grim. In addition, there are no useful biofluid markers for this disease, such that diagnosis is dependent on imaging techniques that are not generally used for screening. In the present study, we use metabolomics techniques to identify metabolites in kidney cancer patients' urine, which appear at different levels (when normalized to account for urine volume and concentration) from the same metabolites in nonkidney cancer patients. We found that quinolinate, 4-hydroxybenzoate, and gentisate are differentially expressed at a false discovery rate of 0.26, and these metabolites are involved in common pathways of specific amino acid and energetic metabolism, consistent with high tumor protein breakdown and utilization, and the Warburg effect. When added to four different (three kidney cancer-derived and one "normal") cell lines, several of the significantly altered metabolites, quinolinate, α-ketoglutarate, and gentisate, showed increased or unchanged cell proliferation that was cell line-dependent. Further evaluation of the global metabolomics analysis, as well as confirmation of the specific potential biomarkers using a larger sample size, will lead to new avenues of kidney cancer diagnosis and therapy.

    5. Use of alternative assays to identify and prioritize organophosphorus flame retardants for potential developmental and neurotoxicity.

      PubMed

      Behl, Mamta; Hsieh, Jui-Hua; Shafer, Timothy J; Mundy, William R; Rice, Julie R; Boyd, Windy A; Freedman, Jonathan H; Hunter, E Sidney; Jarema, Kimberly A; Padilla, Stephanie; Tice, Raymond R

      2015-01-01

      Due to their toxicity and persistence in the environment, brominated flame retardants (BFRs) are being phased out of commercial use, leading to the increased use of alternative chemicals such as the organophosphorus flame retardants (OPFRs). There is, however, limited information on the potential health effects of OPFRs. Due to the structural similarity of the OPFRs to organophosphorus insecticides, there is concern regarding developmental toxicity and neurotoxicity. In response, we evaluated a set of OPFRs (triphenyl phosphate [TPHP]), isopropylated phenyl phosphate [IPP], 2-ethylhexyl diphenyl phosphate [EHDP], tert-butylated phenyl diphenyl phosphate [BPDP], trimethyl phenyl phosphate [TMPP], isodecyl diphenyl phosphate [IDDP], (tris(1,3-dichloroisopropyl) phosphate [TDCIPP], and tris(2-chloroethyl)phosphate [TCEP]) in a battery of cell-based in vitro assays and alternative model organisms and compared the results to those obtained for two classical BFRs (3,3',5,5'-tetrabromobisphenol A [TBBPA] and 2,2'4,4'-brominated diphenyl ether [BDE-47]). The assays used evaluated the effects of chemicals on the differentiation of mouse embryonic stem cells, the proliferation and growth of human neural stem cells, rat neuronal growth and network activity, and development of nematode (Caenorhabditis elegans) and zebrafish (Danio rerio). All assays were performed in a concentration-response format, allowing for the determination of the point of departure (POD: the lowest concentration where a chemically-induced response exceeds background noise). The majority of OPFRs (8/9) were active in multiple assays in the range of 1-10 μM, most of which had comparable activity to the BFRs TBBPA and BDE-47. TCEP was negative in all assays. The results indicate that the replacement OPFRs, with the exception of TCEP, showed comparable activity to the two BFRs in the assays tested. Based on these results, more comprehensive studies are warranted to further characterize the potential hazard

    6. Soluble vascular cell adhesion molecular-1 is a potential biological indicator of hemophilic arthropathy

      PubMed Central

      Tseng, Yu-Hsin; Chiou, Shyh-Shin; Zeng, Yu-Sheng; Tsai, Shih-Pien; Chen, Chun-Shih; Liao, Yu-Mei; Lin, Pei-Chin

      2016-01-01

      Abstract Hemophilic arthropathy is the most common chronic complication in patients with hemophilia. The pathogenesis of hemophilic arthropathy involves the inflammatory processes associated with rheumatoid arthritis (RA). Determining the severity and/or progression of joint damage is crucial when evaluating the effect of treatment modalities. Identifying reliable biomarkers in the peripheral blood of patients with hemophilic arthropathy may be beneficial in clinical practice. Circulating soluble vascular cell adhesion molecule-1 (sVCAM-1), E-selectin, and P-selectin levels are elevated in patients with RA. Our study investigated whether these soluble adhesion molecules can be used as biological indicators in the course of joint damage in patients with hemophilia A. Patients with hemophilia A (mild, moderate, and severe) were enrolled. The plasma levels of sVCAM-1, E-selectin, and P-selectin in patients with hemophilia A and control were measured using specific enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay kits. Joint damages were evaluated using Pettersson scores. No statistically significant differences were observed in E-selectin and P-selectin levels between patients and controls. The sVCAM-1 level was significantly higher in patients with hemophilia A than in controls. The differences remained significant in patients with severe hemophilia A but not in patients with mild or moderate hemophilia A. The degree of hemophilic arthropathy was evaluated using Pettersson scores, and a score higher than 5 indicated marked arthropathy. Patients with more than 1 joint with marked arthropathy showed significantly higher sVCAM-1 levels. sVCAM-1 levels in patients with hemophilia A are associated with the severity of hemophilic arthropathy. PMID:27861372

    7. In Silico Screening Identifies a Novel Potential PARP1 Inhibitor Targeting Synthetic Lethality in Cancer Treatment

      PubMed Central

      Li, Jian; Zhou, Nan; Cai, Peiling; Bao, Jinku

      2016-01-01

      Synthetic lethality describes situations in which defects in two different genes or pathways together result in cell death. This concept has been applied to drug development for cancer treatment, as represented by Poly (ADP-ribose) polymerase (PARPs) inhibitors. In the current study, we performed a computational screening to discover new PARP inhibitors. Among the 11,247 compounds analyzed, one natural product, ZINC67913374, stood out by its superior performance in the simulation analyses. Compared with the FDA approved PARP1 inhibitor, olaparib, our results demonstrated that the ZINC67913374 compound achieved a better grid score (−86.8) and amber score (−51.42). Molecular dynamics simulations suggested that the PARP1-ZINC67913374 complex was more stable than olaparib. The binding free energy for ZINC67913374 was −177.28 kJ/mol while that of olaparib was −159.16 kJ/mol. These results indicated ZINC67913374 bound to PARP1 with a higher affinity, which suggest ZINC67913374 has promising potential for cancer drug development. PMID:26907257

    8. Identification of potential antioxidant indices by biogenic gold nanoparticles in hyperglycemic Wistar rats.

      PubMed

      Sengani, Manimegalai; V, Devi Rajeswari

      2017-03-01

      Oxidative stress is a crucial factor in diabetes, where the abnormal metabolic ambience leads to hyperglycemia resulting in the onset of several vascular complications. Under homeostasis, innate antioxidants efficiently inhibit the oxidative stress, thereby restrain further progression of diabetes. In the present study, a potential antioxidant marker was identified from hepatic tissue of diabetic Wistar rats after oral administration of biogenic gold nanoparticles (GNPs). Diabetic animals treated with GNPs showed increase in insulin level and subsequently reduced the concentration of blood glucose level to normal. Further, GNPs favoured to retain the hepatic enzymatic markers, serum lipid levels and followed by renal biochemical profile in the rats. In addition, GNPs treated rats displayed an elevated level of lipid peroxidation, superoxide dismutase, glutathione peroxidase, and catalase enzymatic activity. Consequently, GNPs treated rats showed diminished level of histological injury in the hepatic, renal, and pancreatic tissues. Taken together, these results suggested that among the several antioxidant enzymes, catalase elucidated the highest area under curve (AUC) with 0.80 accomplished by receiver operating characteristic (ROC) curve. Collectively, our findings enlighten that GNPs treated rat able to alleviate the hyperglycemic condition due to the enzymatic activity of catalase.

    9. Comparison of Sewage and Animal Fecal Microbiomes by Using Oligotyping Reveals Potential Human Fecal Indicators in Multiple Taxonomic Groups

      PubMed Central

      Fisher, Jenny C.; Eren, A. Murat; Green, Hyatt C.; Shanks, Orin C.; Morrison, Hilary G.; Vineis, Joseph H.; Sogin, Mitchell L.

      2015-01-01

      Most DNA-based microbial source tracking (MST) approaches target host-associated organisms within the order Bacteroidales, but the gut microbiota of humans and other animals contain organisms from an array of other taxonomic groups that might provide indicators of fecal pollution sources. To discern between human and nonhuman fecal sources, we compared the V6 regions of the 16S rRNA genes detected in fecal samples from six animal hosts to those found in sewage (as a proxy for humans). We focused on 10 abundant genera and used oligotyping, which can detect subtle differences between rRNA gene sequences from ecologically distinct organisms. Our analysis showed clear patterns of differential oligotype distributions between sewage and animal samples. Over 100 oligotypes of human origin occurred preferentially in sewage samples, and 99 human oligotypes were sewage specific. Sequences represented by the sewage-specific oligotypes can be used individually for development of PCR-based assays or together with the oligotypes preferentially associated with sewage to implement a signature-based approach. Analysis of sewage from Spain and Brazil showed that the sewage-specific oligotypes identified in U.S. sewage have the potential to be used as global alternative indicators of human fecal pollution. Environmental samples with evidence of prior human fecal contamination had consistent ratios of sewage signature oligotypes that corresponded to the trends observed for sewage. Our methodology represents a promising approach to identifying new bacterial taxa for MST applications and further highlights the potential of the family Lachnospiraceae to provide human-specific markers. In addition to source tracking applications, the patterns of the fine-scale population structure within fecal taxa suggest a fundamental relationship between bacteria and their hosts. PMID:26231648

    10. Evaluation of potential sources and transport mechanisms of fecal indicator bacteria to beach water, Murphy Park Beach, Door County, Wisconsin

      USGS Publications Warehouse

      Juckem, Paul F.; Corsi, Steven R.; McDermott, Colleen; Kleinheinz, Gregory; Fogarty, Lisa R.; Haack, Sheridan K.; Johnson, Heather E.

      2013-01-01

      Fecal Indicator Bacteria (FIB) concentrations in beach water have been used for many years as a criterion for closing beaches due to potential health concerns. Yet, current understanding of sources and transport mechanisms that drive FIB occurrence remains insufficient for accurate prediction of closures at many beaches. Murphy Park Beach, a relatively pristine beach on Green Bay in Door County, Wis., was selected for a study to evaluate FIB sources and transport mechanisms. Although the relatively pristine nature of the beach yielded no detection of pathogenic bacterial genes and relatively low FIB concentrations during the study period compared with other Great Lakes Beaches, its selection limited the number of confounding FIB sources and associated transport mechanisms. The primary sources of FIB appear to be internal to the beach rather than external sources such as rivers, storm sewer outfalls, and industrial discharges. Three potential FIB sources were identified: sand, swash-zone groundwater, and Cladophora mats. Modest correlations between FIB concentrations in these potential source reservoirs and FIB concentrations at the beach from the same day illustrate the importance of understanding transport mechanisms between FIB sources and the water column. One likely mechanism for transport and dispersion of FIB from sand and Cladophora sources appears to be agitation of Cladophora mats and erosion of beach sand due to storm activity, as inferred from storm indicators including turbidity, wave height, current speed, wind speed, sky visibility, 24-hour precipitation, and suspended particulate concentration. FIB concentrations in beach water had a statistically significant relation (p-value ‹0.05) with the magnitude of these storm indicators. In addition, transport of FIB in swash-zone groundwater into beach water appears to be driven by groundwater recharge associated with multiday precipitation and corresponding increased swash-zone groundwater discharge at

    11. Photobinding of drugs to cells as an indicator of potential photoallergy.

      PubMed

      Miranda, M A; Castell, J V; Gómez-Lechón, M J; Hernández, D; Martínez, L A

      1995-08-01

      The photobinding of drugs to cells has been investigated as a possible indicator of the photoallergic potential. Tiaprofenic acid (TA), carprofen (CP), benoxaprofen (BP) and ibuprofen (IP) were selected as test substances and human fibroblasts as model biological system. Radioactive labelling of the drugs was achieved through alkaline exchange of the alpha-carboxyl hydrogens by tritium, using (3)H(2)O as solvent. When the labelled compounds were co-irradiated with fibroblasts, TA gave rise to the highest amount of radioactivity covalently bound to cells. This also occurred, albeit to a lower extent, with CP and BP; by contrast, no effect was observed for IP. The observed rank order is in agreement with the available in vivo data. The time course of the process was determined for TA, distinguishing between covalent and non-covalent binding. The results, together with gas Chromatographie analyses of the irradiation mixtures and binding studies with TA and its major photoproduct decarboxytiaprofenic acid (decarboxy-TA) in the dark, indicated that most of the observed photobinding might be due to the photoproduct rather than to the parent drug. It is conceivable that hydrogen abstraction by the excited ketone could take place with proteins as reaction partners. This process would lead to the generation of a radical pair, whose coupling would result in the formation of a covalent bond. The contribution of this mechanistic pathway to the in vivo photobinding has to be considered when a lipophilic photoproduct is formed which, as for decarboxy-TA, still contains an active chromophore.

    12. Nuclear medicine in the acute clinical setting: indications, imaging findings, and potential pitfalls.

      PubMed

      Uliel, Livnat; Mellnick, Vincent M; Menias, Christine O; Holz, Andrew L; McConathy, Jonathan

      2013-01-01

      Nuclear medicine imaging provides valuable functional information that complements information obtained with anatomic imaging techniques in the evaluation of patients with specific acute clinical manifestations. Nuclear medicine studies are most often used in conjunction with other imaging modalities and as a problem-solving tool. Under certain circumstances a nuclear medicine study may be indicated as the first-line imaging modality, as in the case of renal scintigraphy for transplant dysfunction in the early postoperative period. Nuclear imaging may be preferred when a conventional first-line study is contraindicated or when it is important to minimize radiation exposure. The portability of nuclear imaging offers particular advantages for the evaluation of critically ill patients whose clinical condition is unstable and who cannot be safely transported out of the intensive care unit. The ability to visualize physiologic and pathophysiologic processes over relatively long time periods without adding to the patient's radiation exposure contributes to the high diagnostic sensitivity of several types of nuclear medicine studies. Viewing the acquired images in the cine mode adds to the value of these studies for diagnosing and characterizing dynamic abnormalities such as intermittent internal bleeding and bile or urine leakage. In this pictorial review, the spectrum of nuclear medicine studies commonly performed in the acute care setting is reviewed according to body systems and organs, with detailed descriptions of the indications, technical considerations, findings, and potential pitfalls of each type of study. Supplemental material available at http://radiographics.rsna.org/lookup/suppl/doi:10.1148/rg.332125098/-/DC1.

    13. A high-throughput phenotypic screen identifies clofazimine as a potential treatment for cryptosporidiosis.

      PubMed

      Love, Melissa S; Beasley, Federico C; Jumani, Rajiv S; Wright, Timothy M; Chatterjee, Arnab K; Huston, Christopher D; Schultz, Peter G; McNamara, Case W

      2017-02-01

      Cryptosporidiosis has emerged as a leading cause of non-viral diarrhea in children under five years of age in the developing world, yet the current standard of care to treat Cryptosporidium infections, nitazoxanide, demonstrates limited and immune-dependent efficacy. Given the lack of treatments with universal efficacy, drug discovery efforts against cryptosporidiosis are necessary to find therapeutics more efficacious than the standard of care. To date, cryptosporidiosis drug discovery efforts have been limited to a few targeted mechanisms in the parasite and whole cell phenotypic screens against small, focused collections of compounds. Using a previous screen as a basis, we initiated the largest known drug discovery effort to identify novel anticryptosporidial agents. A high-content imaging assay for inhibitors of Cryptosporidium parvum proliferation within a human intestinal epithelial cell line was miniaturized and automated to enable high-throughput phenotypic screening against a large, diverse library of small molecules. A screen of 78,942 compounds identified 12 anticryptosporidial hits with sub-micromolar activity, including clofazimine, an FDA-approved drug for the treatment of leprosy, which demonstrated potent and selective in vitro activity (EC50 = 15 nM) against C. parvum. Clofazimine also displayed activity against C. hominis-the other most clinically-relevant species of Cryptosporidium. Importantly, clofazimine is known to accumulate within epithelial cells of the small intestine, the primary site of Cryptosporidium infection. In a mouse model of acute cryptosporidiosis, a once daily dosage regimen for three consecutive days or a single high dose resulted in reduction of oocyst shedding below the limit detectable by flow cytometry. Recently, a target product profile (TPP) for an anticryptosporidial compound was proposed by Huston et al. and highlights the need for a short dosing regimen (< 7 days) and formulations for children < 2 years. Clofazimine

    14. A high-throughput phenotypic screen identifies clofazimine as a potential treatment for cryptosporidiosis

      PubMed Central

      Jumani, Rajiv S.; Wright, Timothy M.; Chatterjee, Arnab K.; Huston, Christopher D.; Schultz, Peter G.; McNamara, Case W.

      2017-01-01

      Cryptosporidiosis has emerged as a leading cause of non-viral diarrhea in children under five years of age in the developing world, yet the current standard of care to treat Cryptosporidium infections, nitazoxanide, demonstrates limited and immune-dependent efficacy. Given the lack of treatments with universal efficacy, drug discovery efforts against cryptosporidiosis are necessary to find therapeutics more efficacious than the standard of care. To date, cryptosporidiosis drug discovery efforts have been limited to a few targeted mechanisms in the parasite and whole cell phenotypic screens against small, focused collections of compounds. Using a previous screen as a basis, we initiated the largest known drug discovery effort to identify novel anticryptosporidial agents. A high-content imaging assay for inhibitors of Cryptosporidium parvum proliferation within a human intestinal epithelial cell line was miniaturized and automated to enable high-throughput phenotypic screening against a large, diverse library of small molecules. A screen of 78,942 compounds identified 12 anticryptosporidial hits with sub-micromolar activity, including clofazimine, an FDA-approved drug for the treatment of leprosy, which demonstrated potent and selective in vitro activity (EC50 = 15 nM) against C. parvum. Clofazimine also displayed activity against C. hominis–the other most clinically-relevant species of Cryptosporidium. Importantly, clofazimine is known to accumulate within epithelial cells of the small intestine, the primary site of Cryptosporidium infection. In a mouse model of acute cryptosporidiosis, a once daily dosage regimen for three consecutive days or a single high dose resulted in reduction of oocyst shedding below the limit detectable by flow cytometry. Recently, a target product profile (TPP) for an anticryptosporidial compound was proposed by Huston et al. and highlights the need for a short dosing regimen (< 7 days) and formulations for children < 2 years

    15. Wavelet entropy analysis of event-related potentials indicates modality-independent theta dominance.

      PubMed

      Yordanova, Juliana; Kolev, Vasil; Rosso, Osvaldo A; Schürmann, Martin; Sakowitz, Oliver W; Ozgören, Murat; Basar, Erol

      2002-05-30

      Sensory/cognitive stimulation elicits multiple electroencephalogram (EEG)-oscillations that may be partly or fully overlapping over the time axis. To evaluate co-existent multi-frequency oscillations, EEG responses to unimodal (auditory or visual) and bimodal (combined auditory and visual) stimuli were analyzed by applying a new method called wavelet entropy (WE). The method is based on the wavelet transform (WT) and quantifies entropy of short segments of the event-related brain potentials (ERPs). For each modality, a significant transient decrease of WE emerged in the post-stimulus EEG epoch indicating a highly-ordered state in the ERP. WE minimum was always determined by a prominent dominance of theta (4-8 Hz) ERP components over other frequency bands. Event-related 'transition to order' was most pronounced and stable at anterior electrodes, and after bimodal stimulation. Being consistently observed across different modalities, a transient theta-dominated state may reflect a processing stage that is obligatory for stimulus evaluation, during which interfering activations from other frequency networks are minimized.

    16. Enterococci as indicator of potential growth of Salmonella in fresh minced meat at retail.

      PubMed

      Hansen, Tina Beck; Nielsen, Niels L; Christensen, Bjarke Bak; Aabo, Søren

      2016-10-01

      The present study had the purpose of demonstrating a positive correlation between enterococci and Salmonella in minced pork and beef. Data from 2001 to 2002 from retail minced pork and beef in Denmark were used and the association between concentration of enterococci and prevalence and concentration of Salmonella was examined. A total of 2187 and 2747 samples of minced pork and beef, respectively, were collected from butcher shops and supermarkets throughout the country. In pork, 2.1% of all samples were positive for Salmonella whereas 1.5% of beef samples were positive. Among samples with ≥100 CFU/g of enterococci, prevalence of Salmonella positive samples was 3.4%, which was significantly higher than 1.2% observed in minced meat with less than 100 CFU/g of enterococci (P < 0.001). A positive association between occurrence of enterococci and presence of Salmonella in retail minced meat was supported as both prevalence and concentration of Salmonella in positive samples increased with increasing concentrations of enterococci in minced meat. From our data, we suggest that minced meat containing more than 500 enterococci per gram is suspected of having been exposed to temperatures allowing growth of Salmonella. This is to our knowledge the first report, which links presence of an indicator to potential growth of Salmonella.

    17. Joint spatial modeling to identify shared patterns among chronic related potentially preventable hospitalizations

      PubMed Central

      2014-01-01

      Background Rates of Potentially Preventable Hospitalizations (PPH) are used to evaluate access of territorially delimited populations to high quality ambulatory care. A common geographic pattern of several PPH would reflect the performance of healthcare providers. This study is aimed at modeling jointly the geographical variation in six chronic PPH conditions in one Spanish Autonomous Community for describing common and discrepant patterns, and to assess the relative weight of the common pattern on each condition. Methods Data on the 39,970 PPH hospital admissions for diabetes short term complications, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), congestive heart failure, dehydration, angina admission and adult asthma, between 2007 and 2009 were extracted from the Hospital Discharge Administrative Databases and assigned to one of the 240 Basic Health Zones. Rates and Standardized Hospitalization Ratios per geographic unit were estimated. The spatial analysis was carried out jointly for PPH conditions using Shared Component Models (SCM). Results The component shared by the six PPH conditions explained about the 36% of the variability of each PPH condition, ranging from the 25.9 for dehydration to 58.7 for COPD. The geographical pattern found in the latent common component identifies territorial clusters with particularly high risk. The specific risk pattern that each isolated PPH does not share with the common pattern for all six conditions show many non-significant areas for most PPH, but with some exceptions. Conclusions The geographical distribution of the risk of the PPH conditions is captured in a 36% by a unique latent pattern. The SCM modeling may be useful to evaluate healthcare system performance. PMID:24899214

    18. Altered Protein S-Glutathionylation Identifies a Potential Mechanism of Resistance to Acetaminophen-Induced Hepatotoxicity

      PubMed Central

      McGarry, David J.; Chakravarty, Probir; Wolf, C. Roland

      2015-01-01

      Acetaminophen (APAP) is the most commonly used over-the-counter analgesic. However, hepatotoxicity induced by APAP is a major clinical issue, and the factors that define sensitivity to APAP remain unclear. We have previously demonstrated that mice nulled for glutathione S-transferase Pi (GSTP) are resistant to APAP-induced hepatotoxicity. This study aims to exploit this difference to delineate pathways of importance in APAP toxicity. We used mice nulled for GSTP and heme oxygenase-1 oxidative stress reporter mice, together with a novel nanoflow liquid chromatography–tandem mass spectrometry methodology to investigate the role of oxidative stress, cell signaling, and protein S-glutathionylation in APAP hepatotoxicity. We provide evidence that the sensitivity difference between wild-type and Gstp1/2−/− mice is unrelated to the ability of APAP to induce oxidative stress, despite observing significant increases in c-Jun N-terminal kinase and extracellular signal-regulated kinase phosphorylation in wild-type mice. The major difference in response to APAP was in the levels of protein S-glutathionylation: Gstp1/2−/− mice exhibited a significant increase in the number of S-glutathionylated proteins compared with wild-type animals. Remarkably, these S-glutathionylated proteins are involved in oxidative phosphorylation, respiratory complexes, drug metabolism, and mitochondrial apoptosis. Furthermore, we found that S-glutathionylation of the rate-limiting glutathione-synthesizing enzyme, glutamate cysteine ligase, was markedly increased in Gstp1/2−/− mice in response to APAP. The data demonstrate that S-glutathionylation provides an adaptive response to APAP and, as a consequence, suggest that this is an important determinant in APAP hepatotoxicity. This work identifies potential novel avenues associated with cell survival for the treatment of chemical-induced hepatotoxicity. PMID:26311813

    19. Identifying and reducing potentially wrong immunoassay results even when plausible and "not-unreasonable".

      PubMed

      Ismail, Adel A A

      2014-01-01

      The primary role of the clinical laboratory is to report accurate results for diagnosis of disease and management of illnesses. This goal has, to a large extent been achieved for routine biochemical tests, but not for immunoassays which remained susceptible to interference from endogenous immunoglobulin antibodies, causing false, and clinically misleading results. Clinicians regard all abnormal results including false ones as "pathological" necessitating further investigations, or concluding iniquitous diagnosis. Even more seriously, "false-negative" results may wrongly exclude pathology, thus denying patients' necessary treatment. Analytical error rate in immunoassays is relatively high, ranging from 0.4% to 4.0%. Because analytical interference from endogenous antibodies is confined to individuals' sera, it can be inconspicuous, pernicious, sporadic, and insidious because it cannot be detected by internal or external quality assessment procedures. An approach based on Bayesian reasoning can enhance the robustness of clinical validation in highlighting potentially erroneous immunoassay results. When this rational clinical/statistical approach is followed by analytical affirmative follow-up tests, it can help identifying inaccurate and clinically misleading immunoassay data even when they appear plausible and "not-unreasonable." This chapter is largely based on peer reviewed articles associated with and related to this approach. The first section underlines (without mathematical equations) the dominance and misuse of conventional statistics and the underuse of Bayesian paradigm and shows that laboratorians are intuitively (albeit unwittingly) practicing Bayesians. Secondly, because interference from endogenous antibodies is method's dependent (with numerous formats and different reagents), it is almost impossible to accurately assess its incidence in all differently formulated immunoassays and for each analytes/biomarkers. However, reiterating the basic concepts

    20. Characterizing the successful student in general chemistry and physical science classes in terms of Jung's personality types as identified by the Myers-Briggs Type Indicator

      NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

      Riley, Wayne David

      1998-11-01

      A student's success in a science class can depend upon previous experiences, motivation, and the level of interest in the subject. Since psychological type is intrinsic to a person's whole being, it can be influential upon the student's motivation and interests. Thus, a study of student psychological types versus the level of success in a class, as measured by a percentage, has potential to uncover certain personality characteristics which may be helpful to or which may hinder a student's learning environment. This study was initiated, using the Myers-Briggs Type Indicator, to evaluate any correlation between a student's personality type and his/her performance in a science class. A total of 1041 students from three classes: Chemistry 121/122, Chemistry 112, Physical Science 100, volunteered for the study. An analysis of variance (ANOVA) was used to determine the levels of significance among sixteen personality types' averages. The results reveal that for the Chemistry 1121/122 course, the average score of the INTJ personality type was 5.1 to 12.6 points higher than every other personality type. The ANOVA identifies 3 personality types with averages significantly below the INTJ at the p < 0.05 significance level. The ANOVA analysis for the Chemistry 112 course identified significances between student scores at p = 0.08. The significance level for the differences among scores for the Physical Science 100 course was determined at a level of p = 0.02. Significance levels for p < 0.05 and <0.01 were identified between several groups in this course. The data suggest, that although personality type may not predict a particular student's success in a science class, students with certain personality traits may be favored in a chemistry class due the structure of the instruction and the presentation of the subject matter.

    1. Multi-analytical approach reveals potential microbial indicators in soil for sugarcane model systems

      DOE PAGES

      Navarrete, Acacio Aparecido; Diniz, Tatiana Rosa; Braga, Lucas Palma Perez; ...

      2015-06-09

      This study focused on the effects of organic and inorganic amendments and straw retention on the microbial biomass (MB) and taxonomic groups of bacteria in sugarcane-cultivated soils in a greenhouse mesocosm experiment monitored for gas emissions and chemical factors. The experiment consisted of combinations of synthetic nitrogen (N), vinasse (V; a liquid waste from ethanol production), and sugarcane-straw blankets. Increases in CO2-C and N2O-N emissions were identified shortly after the addition of both N and V to the soils, thus increasing MB nitrogen (MB-N) and decreasing MB carbon (MB-C) in the N+V-amended soils and altering soil chemical factors that weremore » correlated with the MB. Across 57 soil metagenomic datasets, Actinobacteria (31.5%), Planctomycetes (12.3%), Deltaproteobacteria (12.3%), Alphaproteobacteria (12.0%) and Betaproteobacteria (11.1%) were the most dominant bacterial groups during the experiment. Differences in relative abundance of metagenomic sequences were mainly revealed for Acidobacteria, Actinobacteria, Gammaproteobacteria and Verrucomicrobia with regard to N+V fertilization and straw retention. Differential abundances in bacterial groups were confirmed using 16S rRNA gene-targeted phylum-specific primers for real-time PCR analysis in all soil samples, whose results were in accordance with sequence data, except for Gammaproteobacteria. Actinobacteria were more responsive to straw retention with Rubrobacterales, Bifidobacteriales and Actinomycetales related to the chemical factors of N+V-amended soils. Acidobacteria subgroup 7 and Opitutae, a verrucomicrobial class, were related to the chemical factors of soils without straw retention as a surface blanket. Taken together, the results showed that MB-C and MB-N responded to changes in soil chemical factors and CO2-C and N2O-N emissions, especially for N+V-amended soils. The results also indicated that several taxonomic groups of bacteria, such as Acidobacteria, Actinobacteria and

    2. Multi-analytical approach reveals potential microbial indicators in soil for sugarcane model systems

      SciTech Connect

      Navarrete, Acacio Aparecido; Diniz, Tatiana Rosa; Braga, Lucas Palma Perez; Silva, Genivaldo Gueiros Zacarias; Franchini, Julio Cezar; Rossetto, Raffaella; Edwards, Robert Alan; Tsai, Siu Mui; Lehman, R. Michael

      2015-06-09

      This study focused on the effects of organic and inorganic amendments and straw retention on the microbial biomass (MB) and taxonomic groups of bacteria in sugarcane-cultivated soils in a greenhouse mesocosm experiment monitored for gas emissions and chemical factors. The experiment consisted of combinations of synthetic nitrogen (N), vinasse (V; a liquid waste from ethanol production), and sugarcane-straw blankets. Increases in CO2-C and N2O-N emissions were identified shortly after the addition of both N and V to the soils, thus increasing MB nitrogen (MB-N) and decreasing MB carbon (MB-C) in the N+V-amended soils and altering soil chemical factors that were correlated with the MB. Across 57 soil metagenomic datasets, Actinobacteria (31.5%), Planctomycetes (12.3%), Deltaproteobacteria (12.3%), Alphaproteobacteria (12.0%) and Betaproteobacteria (11.1%) were the most dominant bacterial groups during the experiment. Differences in relative abundance of metagenomic sequences were mainly revealed for Acidobacteria, Actinobacteria, Gammaproteobacteria and Verrucomicrobia with regard to N+V fertilization and straw retention. Differential abundances in bacterial groups were confirmed using 16S rRNA gene-targeted phylum-specific primers for real-time PCR analysis in all soil samples, whose results were in accordance with sequence data, except for Gammaproteobacteria. Actinobacteria were more responsive to straw retention with Rubrobacterales, Bifidobacteriales and Actinomycetales related to the chemical factors of N+V-amended soils. Acidobacteria subgroup 7 and Opitutae, a verrucomicrobial class, were related to the chemical factors of soils without straw retention as a surface blanket. Taken together, the results showed that MB-C and MB-N responded to changes in soil chemical factors and CO2-C and N2O-N emissions

    3. Multi-Analytical Approach Reveals Potential Microbial Indicators in Soil for Sugarcane Model Systems

      PubMed Central

      Navarrete, Acacio Aparecido; Diniz, Tatiana Rosa; Braga, Lucas Palma Perez; Silva, Genivaldo Gueiros Zacarias; Franchini, Julio Cezar; Rossetto, Raffaella; Edwards, Robert Alan; Tsai, Siu Mui

      2015-01-01

      This study focused on the effects of organic and inorganic amendments and straw retention on the microbial biomass (MB) and taxonomic groups of bacteria in sugarcane-cultivated soils in a greenhouse mesocosm experiment monitored for gas emissions and chemical factors. The experiment consisted of combinations of synthetic nitrogen (N), vinasse (V; a liquid waste from ethanol production), and sugarcane-straw blankets. Increases in CO2-C and N2O-N emissions were identified shortly after the addition of both N and V to the soils, thus increasing MB nitrogen (MB-N) and decreasing MB carbon (MB-C) in the N+V-amended soils and altering soil chemical factors that were correlated with the MB. Across 57 soil metagenomic datasets, Actinobacteria (31.5%), Planctomycetes (12.3%), Deltaproteobacteria (12.3%), Alphaproteobacteria (12.0%) and Betaproteobacteria (11.1%) were the most dominant bacterial groups during the experiment. Differences in relative abundance of metagenomic sequences were mainly revealed for Acidobacteria, Actinobacteria, Gammaproteobacteria and Verrucomicrobia with regard to N+V fertilization and straw retention. Differential abundances in bacterial groups were confirmed using 16S rRNA gene-targeted phylum-specific primers for real-time PCR analysis in all soil samples, whose results were in accordance with sequence data, except for Gammaproteobacteria. Actinobacteria were more responsive to straw retention with Rubrobacterales, Bifidobacteriales and Actinomycetales related to the chemical factors of N+V-amended soils. Acidobacteria subgroup 7 and Opitutae, a verrucomicrobial class, were related to the chemical factors of soils without straw retention as a surface blanket. Taken together, the results showed that MB-C and MB-N responded to changes in soil chemical factors and CO2-C and N2O-N emissions, especially for N+V-amended soils. The results also indicated that several taxonomic groups of bacteria, such as Acidobacteria, Actinobacteria and

    4. Multi-Analytical Approach Reveals Potential Microbial Indicators in Soil for Sugarcane Model Systems.

      PubMed

      Navarrete, Acacio Aparecido; Diniz, Tatiana Rosa; Braga, Lucas Palma Perez; Silva, Genivaldo Gueiros Zacarias; Franchini, Julio Cezar; Rossetto, Raffaella; Edwards, Robert Alan; Tsai, Siu Mui

      2015-01-01

      This study focused on the effects of organic and inorganic amendments and straw retention on the microbial biomass (MB) and taxonomic groups of bacteria in sugarcane-cultivated soils in a greenhouse mesocosm experiment monitored for gas emissions and chemical factors. The experiment consisted of combinations of synthetic nitrogen (N), vinasse (V; a liquid waste from ethanol production), and sugarcane-straw blankets. Increases in CO2-C and N2O-N emissions were identified shortly after the addition of both N and V to the soils, thus increasing MB nitrogen (MB-N) and decreasing MB carbon (MB-C) in the N+V-amended soils and altering soil chemical factors that were correlated with the MB. Across 57 soil metagenomic datasets, Actinobacteria (31.5%), Planctomycetes (12.3%), Deltaproteobacteria (12.3%), Alphaproteobacteria (12.0%) and Betaproteobacteria (11.1%) were the most dominant bacterial groups during the experiment. Differences in relative abundance of metagenomic sequences were mainly revealed for Acidobacteria, Actinobacteria, Gammaproteobacteria and Verrucomicrobia with regard to N+V fertilization and straw retention. Differential abundances in bacterial groups were confirmed using 16S rRNA gene-targeted phylum-specific primers for real-time PCR analysis in all soil samples, whose results were in accordance with sequence data, except for Gammaproteobacteria. Actinobacteria were more responsive to straw retention with Rubrobacterales, Bifidobacteriales and Actinomycetales related to the chemical factors of N+V-amended soils. Acidobacteria subgroup 7 and Opitutae, a verrucomicrobial class, were related to the chemical factors of soils without straw retention as a surface blanket. Taken together, the results showed that MB-C and MB-N responded to changes in soil chemical factors and CO2-C and N2O-N emissions, especially for N+V-amended soils. The results also indicated that several taxonomic groups of bacteria, such as Acidobacteria, Actinobacteria and

    5. Immunoproteomically identified GBAA_0345, alkyl hydroperoxide reductase subunit C is a potential target for multivalent anthrax vaccine.

      PubMed

      Kim, Yeon Hee; Kim, Kyung Ae; Kim, Yu-Ri; Choi, Min Kyung; Kim, Hye Kyeong; Choi, Ki Ju; Chun, Jeong-Hoon; Cha, Kiweon; Hong, Kee-Jong; Lee, Na Gyong; Yoo, Cheon-Kwon; Oh, Hee-Bok; Kim, Tae Sung; Rhie, Gi-eun

      2014-01-01

      Anthrax is caused by the spore-forming bacterium Bacillus anthracis, which has been used as a weapon for bioterrorism. Although current vaccines are effective, they involve prolonged dose regimens and often cause adverse reactions. High rates of mortality associated with anthrax have made the development of an improved vaccine a top priority. To identify novel vaccine candidates, we applied an immunoproteomics approach. Using sera from convalescent guinea pigs or from human patients with anthrax, we identified 34 immunogenic proteins from the virulent B. anthracis H9401. To evaluate vaccine candidates, six were expressed as recombinant proteins and tested in vivo. Two proteins, rGBAA_0345 (alkyl hydroperoxide reductase subunit C) and rGBAA_3990 (malonyl CoA-acyl carrier protein transacylase), have afforded guinea pigs partial protection from a subsequent virulent-spore challenge. Moreover, combined vaccination with rGBAA_0345 and rPA (protective antigen) exhibited an enhanced ability to protect against anthrax mortality. Finally, we demonstrated that GBAA_0345 localizes to anthrax spores and bacilli. Our results indicate that rGBAA_0345 may be a potential component of a multivalent anthrax vaccine, as it enhances the efficacy of rPA vaccination. This is the first time that sera from patients with anthrax have been used to interrogate the proteome of virulent B. anthracis vegetative cells.

    6. Daily electromyography in females with Parkinson's disease: a potential indicator of frailty.

      PubMed

      Roland, Kaitlyn P; Jones, Gareth R; Jakobi, Jennifer M

      2014-01-01

      Females with Parkinson's disease (PD) are at increased risk for frailty, yet are often excluded from frailty studies. Daily electromyography (EMG) recordings of muscle activity can dissociate stages of frailty and indicate functional decline in non-neurological conditions. The purpose of this investigation was to determine whether muscle activity can be used to identify frailty phenotypes in females with PD. EMG during a typical 6.5-h day was examined in biceps brachii, triceps brachii, vastus lateralis and biceps femoris on less-affected PD side. Muscle activity was quantified through burst (>2% maximum exertion, >0.1s) and gap characteristics (<1% maximum exertion, >0.1s). Differences across frailty phenotype (nonfrail, prefrail, frail) and muscle (biceps brachii, BB; triceps brachii, TB; vastus lateralis, VL; biceps femoris, BF) were evaluated with a 2-way repeated measure ANOVA for each burst/gap characteristic. Thirteen right-handed females (mean=67 ± 8 years) were classified as nonfrail (n = 4), prefrail (n = 6), and frail (n = 3) according to the Cardiovascular Health Study frailty index (CHSfi). Frail females had 73% decreased gaps and 48% increased burst duration compared with nonfrail. Decreased gaps may be interpreted as reduced muscle recovery time, which may result in earlier onset fatigue and eventually culminating in frailty. Longer burst durations suggest more muscle activity is required to initiate movement leading to slower movement time in frail females with PD. This is the first study to use EMG to dissociate frailty phenotypes in females with PD during routine daily activities and provides insight into how PD-associated motor declines contributes to frailty and functional decline.

    7. Li zoning in zircon as a potential geospeedometer and peak temperature indicator

      NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

      Trail, Dustin; Cherniak, Daniele J.; Watson, E. Bruce; Harrison, T. Mark; Weiss, Benjamin P.; Szumila, Ian

      2016-03-01

      . Discrete 10 μm concentration zones of Li within zircon may be partially preserved at 700 °C for tens to hundreds of years, and at 450 °C for millions of years. In this regard, Li zoning in zircon holds significant potential as a geospeedometer, and in some instances as a qualitative indicator of the maximum temperature experienced by the zircon.

    8. Potential New Genes for Resistance to Mycosphaerella Graminicola Identified in Triticum Aestivum x Lophopyrum Elongatum Disomic Substitution Lines

      Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

      Lophopyrum species carry many desirable agronomic traits, including disease resistance, which can be transferred to wheat by interspecific hybridizations. To identify potentially new genes for disease and insect resistance carried by individual Lophopyrum chromosomes, 19 of 21 possible wheat cultiv...

    9. Two rare aneutriploids in the unisexual Ambystoma (Amphibia, Caudata) identified by GISH indicating two different types of meiotic errors.

      PubMed

      Bi, K; Bogart, J P; Fu, J

      2007-01-01

      We report two types of aneutriploids in unisexual salamanders Ambystomalaterale-2jeffersonianum (LJJ) and Ambystoma 2 laterale-jeffersonianum (LLJ). One karyotype has 3n = 42: L27 (L8-); J15 (J8p+), and we suggest that it was induced by homoeologous pairing after premeiotic endomitosis followed by an unequal L8;J8 segregation. The second karyotype has 3n = 43: L14 (L10q); J29 (J12+), which can be explained by meiotic nondisjunction followed by unbalanced segregation. These two rare aneutriploids demonstrate two different types of meiotic errors that might help to explain the high mortality observed in this complex. Case one also indicates that contemporary intergenomic exchanges and homoeologous recombinations may occur after a premeiotic chromosome doubling event. Our study provides additional evidence for the extremely flexible reproduction of unisexual Ambystoma.

    10. Trehalose as an indicator of desiccation stress in Drosophila melanogaster larvae: A potential marker of anhydrobiosis

      SciTech Connect

      Thorat, Leena J.; Gaikwad, Sushama M.; Nath, Bimalendu B.

      2012-03-23

      Highlights: Black-Right-Pointing-Pointer First report confirming anhydrobiosis in Drosophila melanogaster larvae. Black-Right-Pointing-Pointer Trehalose synthesis and accumulation in larvae that hydrolyzed on rehydration. Black-Right-Pointing-Pointer Trehalose synthesis in concert with the enzymes involved in trehalose metabolism. Black-Right-Pointing-Pointer Inhibition of trehalose hydrolysis in presence of a specific trehalase inhibitor. Black-Right-Pointing-Pointer Trehalose proposed as a reliable marker for biomonitoring of climate change studies. -- Abstract: In the current scenario of global climate change, desiccation is considered as one of the major environmental stressors for the biota exposed to altered levels of ambient temperature and humidity. Drosophila melanogaster, a cosmopolitan terrestrial insect has been chosen as a humidity-sensitive bioindicator model for the present study since its habitat undergoes frequent stochastic and/or seasonally aggravated dehydration regimes. We report here for the first time the occurrence of anhydrobiosis in D. melanogaster larvae by subjecting them to desiccation stress under laboratory conditions. Larvae desiccated for ten hours at <5% relative humidity could enter anhydrobiosis and could revive upon rehydration followed by resumption of active metabolism. As revealed by FTIR and HPLC analyzes, our findings strongly indicated the synthesis and accumulation of trehalose in the desiccating larvae. Biochemical measurements pointed out the desiccation-responsive trehalose metabolic pathway that was found to be coordinated in concert with the enzymes trehalose 6-phosphate synthase and trehalase. Further, an inhibitor-based experimental approach using deoxynojirimycin, a specific trehalase inhibitor, demonstrated the pivotal role of trehalose in larval anhydrobiosis of D. melanogaster. We therefore propose trehalose as a potential marker for the assessment of anhydrobiosis in Drosophila. The present findings thus add

    11. Looking at Dauphiné twins in vein quartz as a potential paleostress indicator

      NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

      Sintubin, Manuel; Wenk, Hans-Rudolf

      2013-04-01

      Paleostress studies commonly call upon (1) a fault slip data inversion technique, (2) a calcite twin stress inversion technique, (3) recrystallized grain size piezometry for quartz, or (4) direct measurements of residual lattice strain. Recent advances in orientation imaging microscopy (OIM) using electron backscatter diffraction (EBSD) on a scanning electron microscope (SEM) have revealed that Dauphiné twinning is very common in quartz in naturally deformed quartz-bearing rocks in a wide range of tectonometamorphic conditions. It has long been known that mechanical Dauphiné twinning in quartz can be stress-induced. Based on the results of an extensive EBSD-OIM analysis on vein quartz, taken from well-studied early to late-orogenic veins in the High-Ardenne slate belt (Germany, Belgium), we explore the potential use of mechanical Dauphiné twins as a paleostress indicator, possibly completing our toolbox for reconstructing paleostresses in the Earth's crust. The vein quartz studied precipitated in low-grade tectonometamorphic conditions (~200-400°C), typical for the brittle-plastic transition zone at the base of the seismogenic crust (~7-15km). Quartz has only been weakly affected by low to moderate temperature (200 to 400°C) crystal-plastic deformation. The samples show grains with a high concentration of Dauphiné twin boundaries and others free of twin boundaries, thus being untwinned or completely twinned. This pattern depends on the crystallographic orientation. Twin boundaries are arrested by grain or subgrain boundaries, suggesting that Dauphiné twinning occurred on a pre-existing fabric that resulted from crystal-plastic deformation. An analysis of the orientation distribution of the rhombs in the twinned variant domains of individual quartz (sub-)grains reveals a particular preferred orientation of the poles to rhombs. We will discuss the possible significance of these observations with respect to paleostresses that may have caused the mechanical

    12. Karrikins Identified in Biochars Indicate Post-Fire Chemical Cues Can Influence Community Diversity and Plant Development

      PubMed Central

      Kochanek, Jitka; Flematti, Gavin R.

      2016-01-01

      Background Karrikins are smoke-derived compounds that provide strong chemical cues to stimulate seed germination and seedling growth. The recent discovery in Arabidopsis that the karrikin perception system may be present throughout angiosperms implies a fundamental plant function. Here, we identify the most potent karrikin, karrikinolide (KAR1), in biochars and determine its role in species unique plant responses. Methods Biochars were prepared by three distinct commercial-scale pyrolysis technologies using systematically selected source material and their chemical properties, including karrikinolide, were quantified. Dose-response assays determined the effects of biochar on seed germination for two model species that require karrikinolide to break dormancy (Solanum orbiculatum, Brassica tourneforttii) and on seedling growth using two species that display plasticity to karrikins, biochar and phytotoxins (Lactuca sativa, Lycopersicon esculentum). Multivariate analysis examined relationships between biochar properties and the plant phenotype. Findings and Conclusions Results showed that karrikin abundant biochars stimulated dormant seed germination and seedling growth via mechanisms analogous to post-fire chemical cues. The individual species response was associated with its sensitivity to karrikinolide and inhibitory compounds within the biochars. These findings are critical for understanding why biochar influences community composition and plant physiology uniquely for different species and reaffirms that future pyrolysis technologies promise by-products that concomitantly sequester carbon and enhance plant growth for ecological and broader plant related applications. PMID:27536995

    13. Using Smoke Injection in Drains to Identify Potential Preferential Pathways in a Drained Arable Field

      NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

      Nielsen, M. H.; Petersen, C. T.; Hansen, S.

      2014-12-01

      Macropores forming a continuous pathway between the soil surface and subsurface drains favour the transport of many contaminants from agricultural fields to surface waters. The smoke injection method presented by Shipitalo and Gibbs (2000) used for demonstrating and quantifying such pathways has been further developed and used on a drained Danish sandy loam. In order to identify the preferential pathways to drains, smoke was injected in three 1.15 m deep tile drains (total drain length 93 m), and smoke emitting macropores (SEMP) at the soil surface were counted and characterized as producing either strong or weak plumes compared to reference plumes from 3 and 6 mm wide tubes. In the two situations investigated in the present study - an early spring and an autumn situation, smoke only penetrated the soil surface layer via earthworm burrows located in a 1.0 m wide belt directly above the drain lines. However, it is known from previous studies that desiccation fractures in a dry summer situation also can contribute to the smoke pattern. The distance between SEMP measured along the drain lines was on average 0.46 m whereas the average spacing between SEMP with strong plumes was 2.3 m. Ponded water was applied in 6 cm wide rings placed above 52 burrows including 17 reference burrows which did not emit smoke. Thirteen pathways in the soil were examined using dye tracer and profile excavation. SEMP with strong plumes marked the entrance of highly efficient transport pathways conducting surface applied water and dye tracer into the drain. However, no single burrow was traced all the way from the surface into the drain, the dye patterns branched off in a network of other macropores. Water infiltration rates were significantly higher (P < 0.05) in SEMP with strong plumes (average rate: 247 mL min-1 n = 19) compared to SEMP with weak plumes (average rate: 87 mL min-1 n = 16) and no plumes (average rate: 56 mL min-1 n = 17). The results suggest that the smoke injection method

    14. Electrical potentials indicate stimulus expectancy in the brains of ants and bees.

      PubMed

      Ramón, Fidel; Gronenberg, Wulfila

      2005-03-01

      In vertebrates, and in humans in particular, so-called 'omitted stimulus potentials' can be electrically recorded from the brain or scalp upon repeated stimulation with simple stimuli such as light flashes. While standard evoked potentials follow each stimulus in a series, 'omitted stimulus potentials' occur when an additional stimulus is expected after the end of a stimulus series. These potentials represent neuronal plasticity and are assumed to be involved in basic cognitive processes. We recorded electroretinograms from the eyes and visually evoked potentials from central brain areas of honey bees and ants, social insects to which cognitive abilities have been ascribed and whose rich-behavioral repertoires include navigation, learning and memory. We demonstrate that omitted stimulus potentials occur in these insects. Omitted stimulus potentials in bees and ants show similar temporal characteristics to those found in crayfish and vertebrates, suggesting that common mechanisms may underlie this form of short-term neuronal plasticity.

    15. Anthropogenic waste indicators (AWIs), particularly PAHs and LABs, in Malaysian sediments: Application of aquatic environment for identifying anthropogenic pollution.

      PubMed

      Masood, Najat; Zakaria, Mohamad Pauzi; Halimoon, Normala; Aris, Ahmad Zaharin; Magam, Sami M; Kannan, Narayanan; Mustafa, Shuhaimi; Ali, Masni Mohd; Keshavarzifard, Mehrzad; Vaezzadeh, Vahab; Alkhadher, Sadeq Abdullah Abdo; Al-Odaini, Najat Ahmed

      2016-01-15

      Polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs) and linear alkylbenzenes (LABs) were used as anthropogenic markers of organic chemical pollution of sediments in the Selangor River, Peninsular Malaysia. This study was conducted on sediment samples from the beginning of the estuary to the upstream river during dry and rainy seasons. The concentrations of ƩPAHs and ƩLABs ranged from 203 to 964 and from 23 to 113 ng g(-1) dry weight (dw), respectively. In particular, the Selangor River was found to have higher sedimentary levels of PAHs and LABs during the wet season than in the dry season, which was primarily associated with the intensity of domestic wastewater discharge and high amounts of urban runoff washing the pollutants from the surrounding area. The concentrations of the toxic contaminants were determined according to the Sediment Quality Guidelines (SQGs). The PAH levels in the Selangor River did not exceed the SQGs, for example, the effects range low (ERL) value, indicating that they cannot exert adverse biological effects.

    16. Identifying a Physical Indicator of Suicide Risk: Non-Suicidal Self-Injury Scars Predict Suicidal Ideation and Suicide Attempts

      PubMed Central

      Burke, Taylor A.; Hamilton, Jessica L.; Cohen, Jonah N.; Stange, Jonathan P.; Alloy, Lauren B.

      2015-01-01

      Background Suicide risk is challenging to quantify due to reliance on self-report, which is limited by individuals’ lack of insight and the desire to conceal such intentions. Non-suicidal self-injury (NSSI) is one of the most robust predictors of suicidal ideation (SI) and suicide attempts (SA). Although NSSI often leads to permanent scarring, which can be assessed by objective physical examination, no research has examined whether scarring denotes tangible risk for SI and SA. The present study examined whether NSSI scar presence and number predict current SI and SA history. Further, we examined whether brooding would exacerbate the effects of NSSI scarring on SI or SA. Methods Young adults (N = 231; M = 21.24 years; 78% female) completed self-report questionnaires assessing SA history, frequency of NSSI, presence/number of NSSI scars, brooding, current depressive symptoms, and SI. Results NSSI scar presence and number predicted current SI and SA history after controlling for current depressive symptoms. Moreover, scar presence and number predicted current SI over and above the effects of SA history and NSSI frequency, method, and medical severity. Further, NSSI scar presence and number predicted SI more strongly among individuals with greater levels of brooding than among individuals with lower levels of brooding. Conclusions The presence and number of NSSI scars are objective physical indicators of risk for SI and SAs. Brooding may further heighten the risk of SI for individuals bearing NSSI scars. PMID:26773994

    17. Use of AIRSAR to identify woody shrub invasion and other indicators of desertification in the Jornada LTER

      NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

      Musick, H. Brad; Schaber, Gerald G.; Breed, Carol S.

      1995-01-01

      The replacement of semidesert grassland by woody shrubland is a widespread form of desertification. This change in physiognomy and species composition tends to sharply reduce the productivity of the land for grazing by domestic livestock, increase soil erosion and reduce soil fertility, and greatly alter many other aspects of ecosystem structure and functioning. Remote sensing methods are needed to assess and monitor shrubland encroachment. Detection of woody shrubs at low density would provide a particularly useful baseline on which to access changes, because an initially low shrub density often tends to increase even after cessation of the disturbance (e.g., overgrazing, drought, or fire suppression) responsible for triggering the initial stages of the invasion (Grover and Musick, 1990). Limited success has been achieved using optical remote sensing. In contrast to other forms of desertification, biomass does not consistently decrease with a shift from grassland to shrubland. Estimation of green vegetation amount (e.g., by NDVI) is thus of limited utility, unless the shrubs and herbaceous plants differ consistently in phenology and the area can be viewed during a season when only one of these is green. The objective of this study was to determine if the potential sensitivity of active microwave remote sensing to vegetation structure could be used to assess the degree of shrub invasion of grassland. Polarimetric Airborne Synthetic Aperture Radar (AIRSAR) data were acquired for a semiarid site containing varied mixtures of shrubs and herbaceous vegetation and compared with ground observations of vegetation type and other landsurface characteristics. In this preliminary report we examine the response of radar backscatter intensity to shrub density. The response of other multipolarization parameters will be examined in future work.

    18. Rapid, Potentially Automatable, Method Extract Biomarkers for HPLC/ESI/MS/MS to Detect and Identify BW Agents

      DTIC Science & Technology

      1997-11-01

      status can sometimes be reflected in the infectious potential or drug resistance of those pathogens. For example, in Mycobacterium tuberculosis ... Mycobacterium tuberculosis , its antibiotic resistance and prediction of pathogenicity amongst Mycobacterium spp. based on signature lipid biomarkers ...TITLE AND SUBTITLE Rapid, Potentially Automatable, Method Extract Biomarkers for HPLC/ESI/MS/MS to Detect and Identify BW Agents 5a. CONTRACT NUMBER 5b

    19. Relevant magnetic and soil parameters as potential indicators of soil conservation status of Mediterranean agroecosystems

      NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

      Quijano, Laura; Chaparro, Marcos A. E.; Marié, Débora C.; Gaspar, Leticia; Navas, Ana

      2014-09-01

      The main sources of magnetic minerals in soils unaffected by anthropogenic pollution are iron oxides and hydroxides derived from parent materials through soil formation processes. Soil magnetic minerals can be used as indicators of environmental factors including soil forming processes, degree of pedogenesis, weathering processes and biological activities. In this study measurements of magnetic susceptibility are used to detect the presence and the concentration of soil magnetic minerals in topsoil and bulk samples in a small cultivated field, which forms a hydrological unit that can be considered to be representative of the rainfed agroecosystems of Mediterranean mountain environments. Additional magnetic studies such as isothermal remanent magnetization (IRM), anhysteretic remanent magnetization (ARM) and thermomagnetic measurements are used to identify and characterize the magnetic mineralogy of soil minerals. The objectives were to analyse the spatial variability of the magnetic parameters to assess whether topographic factors, soil redistribution processes, and soil properties such as soil texture, organic matter and carbonate contents analysed in this study, are related to the spatial distribution pattern of magnetic properties. The medians of mass specific magnetic susceptibility at low frequency (χlf) were 36.0 and 31.1 × 10-8 m3 kg-1 in bulk and topsoil samples respectively. High correlation coefficients were found between the χlf in topsoil and bulk core samples (r = 0.951, p < 0.01). In addition, volumetric magnetic susceptibility was measured in situ in the field (κis) and values varied from 13.3 to 64.0 × 10-5 SI. High correlation coefficients were found between χlf in topsoil measured in the laboratory and volumetric magnetic susceptibility field measurements (r = 0.894, p < 0.01). The results obtained from magnetic studies such as IRM, ARM and thermomagnetic measurements show the presence of magnetite, which is the predominant magnetic carrier

    20. Wildlife Abundance and Diversity as Indicators of Tourism Potential in Northern Botswana.

      PubMed

      Winterbach, Christiaan W; Whitesell, Carolyn; Somers, Michael J

      2015-01-01

      Wildlife tourism can provide economic incentives for conservation. Due to the abundance of wildlife and the presence of charismatic species some areas are better suited to wildlife tourism. Our first objective was to develop criteria based on wildlife abundance and diversity to evaluate tourism potential in the Northern Conservation Zone of Botswana. Secondly we wanted to quantify and compare tourism experiences in areas with high and low tourism potential. We used aerial survey data to estimate wildlife biomass and diversity to determine tourism potential, while data from ground surveys quantified the tourist experience. Areas used for High Paying Low Volume tourism had significantly higher mean wildlife biomass and wildlife diversity than the areas avoided for this type of tourism. Only 22% of the Northern Conservation Zone has intermediate to high tourism potential. The areas with high tourism potential, as determined from the aerial survey data, provided tourists with significantly better wildlife sightings (ground surveys) than the low tourism potential areas. Even Low Paying tourism may not be economically viable in concessions that lack areas with intermediate to high tourism potential. The largest part of the Northern Conservation Zone has low tourism potential, but low tourism potential is not equal to low conservation value. Alternative conservation strategies should be developed to complement the economic incentive provided by wildlife-based tourism in Botswana.

    1. Wildlife Abundance and Diversity as Indicators of Tourism Potential in Northern Botswana

      PubMed Central

      Winterbach, Christiaan W.; Whitesell, Carolyn; Somers, Michael J.

      2015-01-01

      Wildlife tourism can provide economic incentives for conservation. Due to the abundance of wildlife and the presence of charismatic species some areas are better suited to wildlife tourism. Our first objective was to develop criteria based on wildlife abundance and diversity to evaluate tourism potential in the Northern Conservation Zone of Botswana. Secondly we wanted to quantify and compare tourism experiences in areas with high and low tourism potential. We used aerial survey data to estimate wildlife biomass and diversity to determine tourism potential, while data from ground surveys quantified the tourist experience. Areas used for High Paying Low Volume tourism had significantly higher mean wildlife biomass and wildlife diversity than the areas avoided for this type of tourism. Only 22% of the Northern Conservation Zone has intermediate to high tourism potential. The areas with high tourism potential, as determined from the aerial survey data, provided tourists with significantly better wildlife sightings (ground surveys) than the low tourism potential areas. Even Low Paying tourism may not be economically viable in concessions that lack areas with intermediate to high tourism potential. The largest part of the Northern Conservation Zone has low tourism potential, but low tourism potential is not equal to low conservation value. Alternative conservation strategies should be developed to complement the economic incentive provided by wildlife-based tourism in Botswana. PMID:26308859

    2. Quantification of Impervious Surfaces Along the Wasatch Front, Utah: AN Object-Based Image Analysis Approach to Identifying AN Indicator for Wetland Stress

      NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

      Leydsman-McGinty, E. I.; Ramsey, R. D.; McGinty, C.

      2013-12-01

      The Remote Sensing/GIS Laboratory at Utah State University, in cooperation with the United States Environmental Protection Agency, is quantifying impervious surfaces for three watershed sub-basins in Utah. The primary objective of developing watershed-scale quantifications of impervious surfaces is to provide an indicator of potential impacts to wetlands that occur within the Wasatch Front and along the Great Salt Lake. A geospatial layer of impervious surfaces can assist state agencies involved with Utah's Wetlands Program Plan (WPP) in understanding the impacts of impervious surfaces on wetlands, as well as support them in carrying out goals and actions identified in the WPP. The three watershed sub-basins, Lower Bear-Malad, Lower Weber, and Jordan, span the highly urbanized Wasatch Front and are consistent with focal areas in need of wetland monitoring and assessment as identified in Utah's WPP. Geospatial layers of impervious surface currently exist in the form of national and regional land cover datasets; however, these datasets are too coarse to be utilized in fine-scale analyses. In addition, the pixel-based image processing techniques used to develop these coarse datasets have proven insufficient in smaller scale or detailed studies, particularly when applied to high-resolution satellite imagery or aerial photography. Therefore, object-based image analysis techniques are being implemented to develop the geospatial layer of impervious surfaces. Object-based image analysis techniques employ a combination of both geospatial and image processing methods to extract meaningful information from high-resolution imagery. Spectral, spatial, textural, and contextual information is used to group pixels into image objects and then subsequently used to develop rule sets for image classification. eCognition, an object-based image analysis software program, is being utilized in conjunction with one-meter resolution National Agriculture Imagery Program (NAIP) aerial

    3. Identifying cold-water coral ecosystem by using benthic foraminiferal indicators: from active reefs to the geological record

      NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

      Margreth, Stephan; Rüggeberg, Andres; Gennari, Giordana; Spezzaferri, Silvia

      2010-05-01

      similarities. In particular, epifaunal-attached species such as Discanomalina coronata, Cibicides refulgens, and Lobatula lobatula dominate the assemblages with D. coronata restricted to living cold-water coral reefs facies only and/or in co-occurrence with coral fragments. In conclusion, our data suggest that although cold-water coral ecosystems occur at different latitudes, the associated foraminiferal assemblages are consistent from Norway to the Western Mediterranean. Thus they can be used to identify these ecosystems even in the geologic record, when the corals are often strongly dissolved like in the Alboran Sea. References: Margreth, S., Rüggeberg, A. and Spezzaferri, S., 2009. Benthic foraminifera as bioindicator for cold-water coral reef ecosystems along the Irish margin. Deep Sea Res. Part I, 56: 2216-2234. This study is funded by the Swiss National Foundation Projects 200020-117928 and 200021-111694.

    4. Identifying Potentially Hazardous Co-orbiting Material of Known NEOs Using Magnetic Signatures Produced in Destructive Collisions

      NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

      Lai, Hairong; Russell, Christopher; Jia, Yingdong; Wei, Hanying; Connors, Martin

      2015-04-01

      It is estimated that over 99% of near-Earth objects (NEOs) with diameters of about tens of meters are undiscovered. However, simulations show that they result in the most damage per year. Many of these bodies, produced in non-destructive collisions with larger well-characterized NEOs, are co-orbiting with their parent objects. Thereafter, scattering will occur due to gravitational perturbations when the co-orbiters have close encounters to any planets. Such gravitational scattering may not affect the orbits of the parent body. Therefore "safe" NEOs which have negligible impact probability with the Earth may be accompanied by potentially hazardous co-orbiting material. Those co-orbitals do reveal their existence in collisions with meteoroids, which are numerous and can be as small as tens of centimeters in diameter. Clouds of fine dust/gas particles released in such collisions become charged after generation and interact coherently with the solar wind electromagnetically. The interplanetary magnetic field is then perturbed. The resultant structures have been called interplanetary field enhancements (IFEs). They are readily identified when they pass spacecraft equipped with magnetometers. Although the co-orbitals responsible for the IFEs were disrupted in collisions, they are valid samples of the remaining co-orbiting material. Therefore, we can use IFEs to identify the spatial and mass distribution of such co-orbitals. With statistical studies of IFE occurrence, we identified asteroid 2201 Oljato and asteroid 138175 to have such co-orbiting material. The mass of the co-orbitals can be inferred by combining the results from observations and MHD simulations. Multi-spacecraft simultaneous observations measure the dimensions of the magnetic perturbations and the forces lifting them away from the Sun, while multi-fluid simulations give the accelerations of the perturbations. In summary, our technique not only helps us to identify which NEOs are accompanied by hazardous

    5. Just the Right Mix: Identifying Potential Dropouts in Montgomery County Public Schools Using an Early Warning Indicators Approach

      ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

      West, Thomas C.

      2013-01-01

      Each school year, roughly a thousand students drop out of Montgomery County (Maryland) Public Schools (MCPS). However, unlike other large, urban school districts where students who drop out skip school and are suspended often (Balfanz & Byrnes, 2010), students who drop out of MCPS are present in school; they just are not doing well…

    6. Identifying High Potential Well Targets with 3D Seismic and Mineralogy

      SciTech Connect

      Mellors, R. J.

      2015-10-30

      Seismic reflection the primary tool used in petroleum exploration and production, but use in geothermal exploration is less standard, in part due to cost but also due to the challenges in identifying the highly-permeable zones essential for economic hydrothermal systems [e.g. Louie et al., 2011; Majer, 2003]. Newer technology, such as wireless sensors and low-cost high performance computing, has helped reduce the cost and effort needed to conduct 3D surveys. The second difficulty, identifying permeable zones, has been less tractable so far. Here we report on the use of seismic attributes from a 3D seismic survey to identify and map permeable zones in a hydrothermal area.

    7. Biominerals on Mars: the potential for carbonates to be life indicators

      NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

      Stalport, Fabien; Person, Alain; Cabane, Michel; Ausset, Patrick; Coll, Patrice; Szopa, Cyril; Navarro-Gonzalez, Rafael

      The question of life on Mars remains open today because recent data provided by the Mars Express orbiter, the Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter and the twin rovers Spirit and Opportunity seem to indicate a past environment of Mars, with liquid water and mild temperatures, favourable for life. We also suggest that a better understanding of the biomineral formation processes, and the discrimination between them and their abiotic counterparts (i.e. minerals with the same chemical and mineralogical composition but formed by abiotic processes) should be considered as a promising approach in order to detect possible traces of a past Martian life. Moreover, biominerals may constitute fossil records of biological activities, which can survive for several millions or billions years, because they are among the oldest know traces of the biological activity on Earth. One of the properties of the biominerals, compared with their abiotic counterparts, is their faster crystalline speed of growing. The higher this speed is, the more the mineral crystallinity decreases, i.e. its crystal lattice will incorporate a significant number of impurities (crystalline defects, trace/minor elements and maybe organic matter). These impurities increase the crystal entropy and also the required energy to stabilize it: the crystal is then thermodynamically less stable. We then propose that the crystallinity differences between the biominerals and their abiotic counterparts induce specific physico-chemical behaviours. Among the analytical techniques capable to characterize this mineral property, we selected DTA-TG analysis (thermogravimetry coupled to differential thermal analysis). We suggest that the crystallinity is an influent parameter for the mineral thermal resistance. The temperature increase could be a "stressing" agent for the crystal lattices and it could involve behaviour differences between the biominerals and their abiotic counterparts. We then quantify this difference by comparing thermal

    8. Graduate Standards for Teachers: Final-Year Preservice Teachers Potentially Identify the Gaps

      ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

      Hudson, Suzanne M.; Hudson, Peter; Weatherby-Fell, Noelene L.; Shipway, Brad

      2016-01-01

      The Australian Professional Standards for Teachers (APST) were devised to identify the attributes, skills and practices required of teachers at various career stages. This study investigates final-year preservice teachers' self-reported confidence against the APST at the graduate career stage. This mixed-method study used a Likert scale survey and…

    9. Development of Normal Human Colonocyte Cultures to Identify a Carcinogenic Potential for Priority Disinfection Byproducts

      EPA Science Inventory

      Epidemiological studies have linked the consumption of disinfected surface waters to an increased risk of colorectal cancer. Of the approximately >600 disinfection byproducts (DBPs) identified, the US EPA regulates 11 DBPS for an increased risk of cancer. An in-depth mechanism-ba...

    10. Identifying Leadership Potential: The Process of Principals within a Charter School Network

      ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

      Waidelich, Lynn A.

      2012-01-01

      The importance of strong educational leadership for American K-12 schools cannot be overstated. As such, school districts need to actively recruit and develop leaders. One way to do so is for school officials to become more strategic in leadership identification and development. If contemporary leaders are strategic about whom they identify and…

    11. Identifying Carcinogenic Potentials of Drinking Water Disinfection Byproducts using Normal Human Colonocyte Cultures

      EPA Science Inventory

      Epidemiological studies have linked the consumption of disinfected surface waters to an increased risk of colorectal cancer. Approximately 600 byproducts (DBPs) have been identified for the major disinfectants currently in use and represent less than half of the total organic car...

    12. Effects of some heavy metals on the action potentials of an identified Helix pomatia photosensitive neuron.

      PubMed

      Kartelija, Gordana; Radenović, Lidija; Todorović, Natasa; Nedeljković, Miodrag

      2005-06-01

      In the photosensitive MB neuron in the left parietal ganglion of Helix pomatia, the onset of light prolongs significantly (by about 40%) the duration of the action potential. The broadening of the action potential after the onset of light was found to be due to its calcium component and could not be induced after blocking Ca(2+) channels by Cd(2+) and Pb(2+) and in absence of Ca(2+) in medium. The blocking effect of both compounds was reversible. It was found that CdCl(2) exhibited a more intense blocking effect than PbCl(2).

    13. VFA and ammonia from residential food waste as indicators of odor potential.

      PubMed

      Qamaruz-Zaman, N; Milke, M W

      2012-12-01

      Research was conducted to determine suitable chemical parameters as indicators of odor from decomposing food wastes. Prepared food scraps were stored in 18 l plastic buckets (2 kg wet weight each) at 20 °C and 8 °C to reproduce high and low temperature conditions. After 1, 3, 7, 10 and 14 days of storage, the odor from the buckets were marked to an intensity scale of 0 (no odor) to 5 (intense) and the corresponding leachate analyzed for volatile fatty acids, ammonia and total organic carbon. A linear relationship between odor intensity and the measured parameter indicates a suitable odor indicator. Odor intensified with longer storage period and warmer surroundings. The study found ammonia and isovaleric acid to be promising odor indicators. For this food waste mixture, offensive odors were emitted if the ammonia and isovaleric acid contents exceeded 360 mg/l and 940 mg/l, respectively.

    14. Cluster analysis of spontaneous preterm birth phenotypes identifies potential associations among preterm birth mechanisms

      PubMed Central

      Esplin, M Sean; Manuck, Tracy A.; Varner, Michael W.; Christensen, Bryce; Biggio, Joseph; Bukowski, Radek; Parry, Samuel; Zhang, Heping; Huang, Hao; Andrews, William; Saade, George; Sadovsky, Yoel; Reddy, Uma M.; Ilekis, John

      2015-01-01

      Objective We sought to employ an innovative tool based on common biological pathways to identify specific phenotypes among women with spontaneous preterm birth (SPTB), in order to enhance investigators' ability to identify to highlight common mechanisms and underlying genetic factors responsible for SPTB. Study Design A secondary analysis of a prospective case-control multicenter study of SPTB. All cases delivered a preterm singleton at SPTB ≤34.0 weeks gestation. Each woman was assessed for the presence of underlying SPTB etiologies. A hierarchical cluster analysis was used to identify groups of women with homogeneous phenotypic profiles. One of the phenotypic clusters was selected for candidate gene association analysis using VEGAS software. Results 1028 women with SPTB were assigned phenotypes. Hierarchical clustering of the phenotypes revealed five major clusters. Cluster 1 (N=445) was characterized by maternal stress, cluster 2 (N=294) by premature membrane rupture, cluster 3 (N=120) by familial factors, and cluster 4 (N=63) by maternal comorbidities. Cluster 5 (N=106) was multifactorial, characterized by infection (INF), decidual hemorrhage (DH) and placental dysfunction (PD). These three phenotypes were highly correlated by Chi-square analysis [PD and DH (p<2.2e-6); PD and INF (p=6.2e-10); INF and DH (p=0.0036)]. Gene-based testing identified the INS (insulin) gene as significantly associated with cluster 3 of SPTB. Conclusion We identified 5 major clusters of SPTB based on a phenotype tool and hierarchal clustering. There was significant correlation between several of the phenotypes. The INS gene was associated with familial factors underlying SPTB. PMID:26070700

    15. Parasites of the flounder Platichthys flesus (L.) from the German Bight, North Sea, and their potential use in ecosystem monitoring. A. Infection characteristics of potential indicator species

      NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

      Schmidt, V.; Zander, S.; Körting, W.; Steinhagen, D.

      2003-10-01

      As part of integrated biological-effect monitoring, the parasite fauna of the flounder Platichthys flesus (L.) was investigated at five locations in the German Bight, with a view to using parasite species as bio-indicators. Over a period of 6 years, parasites from 30 different taxa were identified, but only 7 taxa of the parasite community occurred regularly at all locations and in sufficient abundance that they could be considered as potential indicator species. These species were the ciliophoran Trichodina spp., the copepods Acanthochondria cornuta, Lepeophtheirus pectoralis and Lernaeocera branchialis, the helminths Zoogonoides viviparus and Cucullanus heterochrous and metacercaria of an unidentified digenean species. Infection characteristics of these parasites are presented, with a comparison of the results from individual sampling periods and those of the long-term data set. Natural influences on the infection levels, such as temporal variations, habitat conditions and host-related factors, were evaluated. All of these parasite species showed significant differences in their infection levels between the Elbe estuary, as the most polluted site, and the less polluted coastal and marine locations: Helgoland, Outer Eider estuary and Spiekeroog, especially in the long-term data set. Gradual differences between the Elbe, the Outer Eider and Helgoland, which were not detected in individual sampling periods, also became evident in the pooled-data set. These were found in the prevalence of Trichodina spp., A. cornuta, Z. viviparus and C. heterochrous. Although salinity is considered as the most important natural factor, influencing the distribution pattern of the majority of the potential indicator species, infection levels of most of these species differed between locations with similar salinity conditions. Infection levels corresponded to a contamination gradient (Elbe > Inner Eider, Outer Eider > Helgoland) established across the locations. Seasonal variation in

    16. A national effort to identify fry processing clones with low acrylamide-forming potential

      Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

      Acrylamide is a suspected human carcinogen. Processed potato products, such as chips and fries, contribute to dietary intake of acrylamide. One of the most promising approaches to reducing acrylamide consumption is to develop and commercialize new potato varieties with low acrylamide-forming potenti...

    17. Comparing OECD PISA Reading in English to Other Languages: Identifying Potential Sources of Non-Invariance

      ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

      Asil, Mustafa; Brown, Gavin T. L.

      2016-01-01

      The use of the Programme for International Student Assessment (PISA) across nations, cultures, and languages has been criticized. The key criticisms point to the linguistic and cultural biases potentially underlying the design of reading comprehension tests, raising doubts about the legitimacy of comparisons across economies. Our research focused…

    18. Utilization of solar energy in developing countries: Identifying some potential markets

      NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

      Hein, G. F.; Siddiqi, T. A.

      1978-01-01

      The potential use of solar electricity generated from photovoltaic cells is examined for nineteen developing nations. Energy and economic profiles are summarized for each country. A comparison is made between the use of autogeneration and photovoltaics in a rural area of Haiti.

    19. A Comparison between Survey and Verbal Choice Methods of Identifying Potential Reinforcers among Employees

      ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

      Wilder, David A; Therrien, Kelly; Wine, Byron

      2006-01-01

      Two methods of assessing preference for stimuli (i.e., potential reinforcers) were compared for adult administrative assistant employees. During Phase 1, a survey method and a verbal choice method of assessing preference for 6 stimuli were administered. During Phase 2, a coupon system was used to determine which categories of stimuli actually…

    20. Cooperative Development of the Digital Library: Identifying and Working with Potential Partners.

      ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

      Poland, Jean

      In a university environment, the library can benefit from interest in the digital future on the part of other concerned groups. Computer science departments are natural partners in the development of digital libraries. Professional societies, for-profit companies, and foundations are also potential sources of support. Cornell University Library…

    1. An Event-Related Potentials Study of Mental Rotation in Identifying Chemical Structural Formulas

      ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

      Huang, Chin-Fei; Liu, Chia-Ju

      2012-01-01

      The purpose of this study was to investigate how mental rotation strategies affect the identification of chemical structural formulas. This study conducted event-related potentials (ERPs) experiments. In addition to the data collected in the ERPs, a Chemical Structure Conceptual Questionnaire and interviews were also admin-istered for data…

    2. Combined single channel and single molecule detection identifies subunit composition of STIM1-activated transient receptor potential canonical (TRPC) channels.

      PubMed

      Asanov, Alexander; Sampieri, Alicia; Moreno, Claudia; Pacheco, Jonathan; Salgado, Alfonso; Sherry, Ryan; Vaca, Luis

      2015-01-01

      Depletion of intracellular calcium ion stores initiates a rapid cascade of events culminating with the activation of the so-called Store-Operated Channels (SOC) at the plasma membrane. Calcium influx via SOC is essential in the initiation of calcium-dependent intracellular signaling and for the refilling of internal calcium stores, ensuring the regeneration of the signaling cascade. In spite of the significance of this evolutionary conserved mechanism, the molecular identity of SOC has been the center of a heated controversy spanning over the last 20 years. Initial studies positioned some members of the transient receptor potential canonical (TRPC) channel superfamily of channels (with the more robust evidence pointing to TRPC1) as a putative SOC. Recent evidence indicates that Stromal Interacting Molecule 1 (STIM1) activates some members from the TRPC family of channels. However, the exact subunit composition of TRPC channels remains undetermined to this date. To identify the subunit composition of STIM1-activated TRPC channels, we developed novel method, which combines single channel electrophysiological measurements based on the patch clamp technique with single molecule fluorescence imaging. We termed this method Single ion Channel Single Molecule Detection technique (SC-SMD). Using SC-SMD method, we have obtained direct evidence of the subunit composition of TRPC channels activated by STIM1. Furthermore, our electrophysiological-imaging SC-SMD method provides evidence at the molecular level of the mechanism by which STIM1 and calmodulin antagonize to modulate TRPC channel activity.

    3. Steroid profiling in H295R cells to identify chemicals potentially disrupting the production of adrenal steroids.

      PubMed

      Strajhar, Petra; Tonoli, David; Jeanneret, Fabienne; Imhof, Raphaella M; Malagnino, Vanessa; Patt, Melanie; Kratschmar, Denise V; Boccard, Julien; Rudaz, Serge; Odermatt, Alex

      2017-04-15

      The validated OECD test guideline 456 based on human adrenal H295R cells promotes measurement of testosterone and estradiol production as read-out to identify potential endocrine disrupting chemicals. This study aimed to establish optimal conditions for using H295R cells to detect chemicals interfering with the production of key adrenal steroids. H295R cells' supernatants were characterized by liquid chromatography-mass spectrometry (LC-MS)-based steroid profiling, and the influence of experimental conditions including time and serum content was assessed. Steroid profiles were determined before and after incubation with reference compounds and chemicals to be tested for potential disruption of adrenal steroidogenesis. The H295R cells cultivated according to the OECD test guideline produced progestins, glucocorticoids, mineralocorticoids and adrenal androgens but only very low amounts of testosterone. However, testosterone contained in Nu-serum was metabolized during the 48h incubation. Thus, inclusion of positive and negative controls and a steroid profile of the complete medium prior to the experiment (t=0h) was necessary to characterize H295R cells' steroid production and indicate alterations caused by exposure to chemicals. Among the tested chemicals, octyl methoxycinnamate and acetyl tributylcitrate resembled the corticosteroid induction pattern of the positive control torcetrapib. Gene expression analysis revealed that octyl methoxycinnamate and acetyl tributylcitrate enhanced CYP11B2 expression, although less pronounced than torcetrapib. Further experiments need to assess the toxicological relevance of octyl methoxycinnamate- and acetyl tributylcitrate-induced corticosteroid production. In conclusion, the extended profiling and appropriate controls allow detecting chemicals that act on steroidogenesis and provide initial mechanistic evidence for prioritizing chemicals for further investigations.

    4. White spots in pharmaceutical pipelines-EMA identifies potential areas of unmet medical needs.

      PubMed

      Papaluca, Marisa; Greco, Martina; Tognana, Enrico; Ehmann, Falk; Saint-Raymond, Agnès

      2015-05-01

      Unmet medical needs are a priority for organizations such as the WHO and major public-private initiatives, such as Innovative Medicines Initiative, were established to speed up the development of better and safer medicines for patients. To assist such projects, the EMA in its 'Road Map to 2015' considered the mapping of unmet medical needs as a priority. This study has identified medical conditions for which the EMA could not identify developments in the pharmaceutical pipelines, that is, 'white spots'. Our analysis was made using external data sources as well as mining data of the EMA. The main areas for white spots were oncology, infectious diseases and certain psychiatric conditions. According to our data and a review of literature, in a number of these white spots, diagnostic tools may even be missing. The identification of those conditions will benefit stakeholders, including regulators, research funding bodies and patients' organizations.

    5. Fine-Mapping of Common Genetic Variants Associated with Colorectal Tumor Risk Identified Potential Functional Variants

      PubMed Central

      Gala, Manish; Abecasis, Goncalo; Bezieau, Stephane; Brenner, Hermann; Butterbach, Katja; Caan, Bette J.; Carlson, Christopher S.; Casey, Graham; Chang-Claude, Jenny; Conti, David V.; Curtis, Keith R.; Duggan, David; Gallinger, Steven; Haile, Robert W.; Harrison, Tabitha A.; Hayes, Richard B.; Hoffmeister, Michael; Hopper, John L.; Hudson, Thomas J.; Jenkins, Mark A.; Küry, Sébastien; Le Marchand, Loic; Leal, Suzanne M.; Newcomb, Polly A.; Nickerson, Deborah A.; Potter, John D.; Schoen, Robert E.; Schumacher, Fredrick R.; Seminara, Daniela; Slattery, Martha L.; Hsu, Li; Chan, Andrew T.; White, Emily; Berndt, Sonja I.; Peters, Ulrike

      2016-01-01

      Genome-wide association studies (GWAS) have identified many common single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) associated with colorectal cancer risk. These SNPs may tag correlated variants with biological importance. Fine-mapping around GWAS loci can facilitate detection of functional candidates and additional independent risk variants. We analyzed 11,900 cases and 14,311 controls in the Genetics and Epidemiology of Colorectal Cancer Consortium and the Colon Cancer Family Registry. To fine-map genomic regions containing all known common risk variants, we imputed high-density genetic data from the 1000 Genomes Project. We tested single-variant associations with colorectal tumor risk for all variants spanning genomic regions 250-kb upstream or downstream of 31 GWAS-identified SNPs (index SNPs). We queried the University of California, Santa Cruz Genome Browser to examine evidence for biological function. Index SNPs did not show the strongest association signals with colorectal tumor risk in their respective genomic regions. Bioinformatics analysis of SNPs showing smaller P-values in each region revealed 21 functional candidates in 12 loci (5q31.1, 8q24, 11q13.4, 11q23, 12p13.32, 12q24.21, 14q22.2, 15q13, 18q21, 19q13.1, 20p12.3, and 20q13.33). We did not observe evidence of additional independent association signals in GWAS-identified regions. Our results support the utility of integrating data from comprehensive fine-mapping with expanding publicly available genomic databases to help clarify GWAS associations and identify functional candidates that warrant more onerous laboratory follow-up. Such efforts may aid the eventual discovery of disease-causing variant(s). PMID:27379672

    6. Endothelial cell palmitoylproteomics identifies novel lipid modified targets and potential substrates for protein acyl transferases

      PubMed Central

      Marin, Ethan P.; Derakhshan, Behrad; Lam, TuKiet T.; Davalos, Alberto; Sessa, William C.

      2012-01-01

      Rationale Protein S-palmitoylation is the post-translational attachment of a saturated 16-carbon palmitic acid to a cysteine side chain via a thioester bond. Palmitoylation can affect protein localization, trafficking, stability, and function. The extent and roles of palmitoylation in endothelial cell (EC) biology is not well understood, in part due to technological limits on palmitoylprotein detection. Objective To develop a method using acyl-biotinyl exchange (ABE) technology coupled with mass spectrometry to globally isolate and identify palmitoylproteins in EC. Methods and Results More than 150 putative palmitoyl proteins were identified in EC using ABE and mass spectrometry. Among the novel palmitoylproteins identified is superoxide dismutase 1 (SOD1), an intensively studied enzyme that protects all cells from oxidative damage. Mutation of cysteine 6 prevents palmitoylation, leads to reduction in SOD1 activity in vivo and in vitro, and inhibits nuclear localization, thereby supporting a functional role for SOD1 palmitoylation. Moreover, we used ABE to search for substrates of particular protein acyl transferases in EC. We found that palmitoylation of the cell adhesion protein PECAM1 is dependent on the protein acyl transferase ZDHHC21. We show that knockdown of ZDHHC21 leads to reduced levels of PECAM1 at the cell surface. Conclusions Our data demonstrate the utility of EC palmitoylproteomics to reveal new insights into the role of this important post-translational lipid modification in EC biology. PMID:22496122

    7. Identifying potential engaging leaders within medical education: The role of positive influence on peers.

      PubMed

      Michalec, Barret; Veloski, J Jon; Hojat, Mohammadreza; Tykocinski, Mark L

      2014-08-26

      Abstract Background: Previous research has paid little to no attention towards exploring methods of identifying existing medical student leaders. Aim: Focusing on the role of influence and employing the tenets of the engaging leadership model, this study examines demographic and academic performance-related differences of positive influencers and if students who have been peer-identified as positive influencers also demonstrate high levels of genuine concern for others. Methods: Three separate fourth-year classes were asked to designate classmates that had significant positive influences on their professional and personal development. The top 10% of those students receiving positive influence nominations were compared with the other students on demographics, academic performance, and genuine concern for others. Results: Besides age, no demographic differences were found between positive influencers and other students. High positive influencers were not found to have higher standardized exam scores but did receive significantly higher clinical clerkship ratings. High positive influencers were found to possess a higher degree of genuine concern for others. Conclusion: The findings lend support to (a) utilizing the engaging model to explore leaders and leadership within medical education, (b) this particular method of identifying existing medical student leaders, and (c) return the focus of leadership research to the power of influence.

    8. Genomic analysis of adult B-ALL identifies potential markers of shorter survival.

      PubMed

      Patel, Shiven; Mason, Clinton C; Glenn, Martha J; Paxton, Christian N; South, Sara T; Cessna, Melissa H; Asch, Julie; Cobain, Erin F; Bixby, Dale L; Smith, Lauren B; Reshmi, Shalini; Gastier-Foster, Julie M; Schiffman, Joshua D; Miles, Rodney R

      2017-05-01

      B lymphoblastic leukemia (B-ALL) in adults has a higher risk of relapse and lower long-term survival than pediatric B-ALL, but data regarding genetic prognostic biomarkers are much more limited for adult patients. We identified 70 adult B-ALL patients from three institutions and performed genome-wide analysis via single nucleotide polymorphism (SNP) arrays on DNA isolated from their initial diagnostic sample and, when available, relapse bone marrow specimens to identify recurring copy number alterations (CNA). As B-cell developmental genes play a crucial role in this leukemia, we assessed such for recurrent deletions in diagnostic and relapse samples. We confirmed previous findings that the most prevalent deletions of these genes occur in CDKN2A, IKZF1, and PAX5, with several others at lower frequencies. Of the 16 samples having paired diagnostic and relapse samples, 5 showed new deletions in these recurrent B-cell related genes and 8 showed abolishment. Deletion of EBF1 heralded a significant negative prognostic impact on relapse free survival in univariate and multivariate analyses. The combination of both a CDKN2A/B deletion and an IKZF1 alteration (26% of cases) also showed a trend toward predicting worse overall survival compared to having only one or neither of these deletions. These findings add to the understanding of genomic influences on this comparably understudied disease cohort that upon further validation may help identify patients who would benefit from upfront treatment intensification.

    9. Drug screening in Scn1a zebrafish mutant identifies clemizole as a potential Dravet Syndrome treatment

      PubMed Central

      Baraban, Scott C.; Dinday, Matthew T.; Hortopan, Gabriela A.

      2013-01-01

      Dravet syndrome (DS) is a catastrophic pediatric epilepsy with severe intellectual disability, impaired social development and persistent drug-resistant seizures. One of its primary monogenic causes are mutations in Nav1.1 (SCN1A), a voltage-gated sodium channel. Here we characterise zebrafish Nav1.1 (scn1Lab) mutants originally identified in a chemical mutagenesis screen. Mutants exhibit spontaneous abnormal electrographic activity, hyperactivity and convulsive behaviors. Although scn1Lab expression is reduced, microarray analysis is remarkable for the small fraction of differentially expressed genes (~3%) and lack of compensatory expression changes in other scn subunits. Ketogenic diet, diazepam, valproate, potassium bromide and stiripentol attenuate mutant seizure activity; seven other antiepileptic drugs have no effect. A phenotype-based screen of 320 compounds identifies a US Food and Drug Administration-approved compound (clemizole) that inhibits convulsive behaviors and electrographic seizures. This approach represents a new direction in modeling pediatric epilepsy and could be used to identify novel therapeutics for any monogenic epilepsy disorder. PMID:24002024

    10. Vibrational stark effects to identify ion pairing and determine reduction potentials in electrolyte-free environments

      SciTech Connect

      Mani, Tomoyasu; Grills, David C.; Miller, John R.

      2015-01-02

      A recently-developed instrument for time-resolved infrared detection following pulse radiolysis has been used to measure the ν(C≡N) IR band of the radical anion of a CN-substituted fluorene in tetrahydrofuran. Specific vibrational frequencies can exhibit distinct frequency shifts due to ion-pairing, which can be explained in the framework of the vibrational Stark effect. Measurements of the ratio of free ions and ion-pairs in different electrolyte concentrations allowed us to obtain an association constant and free energy change for ion-pairing. As a result, this new method has the potential to probe the geometry of ion-pairing and allows the reduction potentials of molecules to be determined in the absence of electrolyte in an environment of low dielectric constant.

    11. Vibrational stark effects to identify ion pairing and determine reduction potentials in electrolyte-free environments

      DOE PAGES

      Mani, Tomoyasu; Grills, David C.; Miller, John R.

      2015-01-02

      A recently-developed instrument for time-resolved infrared detection following pulse radiolysis has been used to measure the ν(C≡N) IR band of the radical anion of a CN-substituted fluorene in tetrahydrofuran. Specific vibrational frequencies can exhibit distinct frequency shifts due to ion-pairing, which can be explained in the framework of the vibrational Stark effect. Measurements of the ratio of free ions and ion-pairs in different electrolyte concentrations allowed us to obtain an association constant and free energy change for ion-pairing. As a result, this new method has the potential to probe the geometry of ion-pairing and allows the reduction potentials of moleculesmore » to be determined in the absence of electrolyte in an environment of low dielectric constant.« less

    12. Electrophysiological (Event-Related Potentials) Indices of Cognitive Processing in Autistic Learners.

      ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

      Shibley, Ralph, Jr.; And Others

      Event-related Potentials (ERPs) were recorded to both auditory and visual stimuli from the scalps of nine autistic males and nine normal controls (all Ss between 12 and 22 years of age) to examine the differences in information processing strategies. Ss were tested on three different tasks: an auditory missing stimulus paradigm, a visual color…

    13. Reverse screening approach to identify potential anti-cancer targets of dipyridamole

      PubMed Central

      Ge, Shu-Min; Zhan, Dong-Ling; Zhang, Shu-Hua; Song, Li-Qiang; Han, Wei-Wei

      2016-01-01

      Dipyridamole (DIP) inhibits thrombus formation when given chronically, and causes vasodilation over a short time. To date, DIP can increase the anticancer drugs (5-fluorouracil, methotrexate, piperidine, vincristine) concentration in cancer cells and hence enhance the efficacy of treatment cancer. The inhibition of DIP may result in increased 5-fluorouracil efficacy and diminish the drug side effects. But the actual molecular targets remain unknown. In this study, reverse protein-ligands docking, and quantum mechanics were used to search for the potential molecular targets of DIP. The quantum mechanics calculation was performed by using Gaussian 03 program package. Reverse pharmacophore mapping was used to search for potential molecular target candidates for a given small molecule. The docking study was used for exploring the potential anti-cancer targets of dipyridamole. The two predicted binders with the statistically significant prediction are dihydropyrimidine dehydrogenase (DPD) (PDB Id: 1GTE) and human spindle checkpoint kinase Bub1 (PDB Id: 3E7E). Structure analysis suggests that electrostatic interaction and hydrogen bonding play an important role in their binding process. The strong functional linkage of DIP and 5FU supports our prediction. In conclusion, these results generate a tractable set of anticancer proteins. The exploration of polypharmacology will provide us new opportunities in treating systematic diseases, such as the cancers. The results would generate a tractable set of anticancer target proteins for future experimental validations. PMID:28077994

    14. Identifying the potential of changes to blood sample logistics using simulation.

      PubMed

      Jørgensen, Pelle; Jacobsen, Peter; Poulsen, Jørgen Hjelm

      2013-01-01

      Using simulation as an approach to display and improve internal logistics at hospitals has great potential. This study shows how a simulation model displaying the morning blood-taking round at a Danish public hospital can be developed and utilized with the aim of improving the logistics. The focus of the simulation was to evaluate changes made to the transportation of blood samples between wards and the laboratory. The average- (AWT) and maximum waiting time (MWT) from a blood sample was drawn at the ward until it was received at the laboratory, and the distribution of arrivals of blood samples in the laboratory were used as the evaluation criteria. Four different scenarios were tested and compared with the current approach: (1) Using AGVs (mobile robots), (2) using a pneumatic tube system, (3) using porters that are called upon, or (4) using porters that come to the wards every 45 minutes. Furthermore, each of the scenarios was tested in terms of what amount of resources would give the optimal result. The simulations showed a big improvement potential in implementing a new technology/mean for transporting the blood samples. The pneumatic tube system showed the biggest potential lowering the AWT and MWT with approx. 36% and 18%, respectively. Additionally, all of the scenarios had a more even distribution of arrivals except for porters coming to the wards every 45 min. As a consequence of the results obtained in the study, the hospital decided to implement a pneumatic tube system.

    15. Early Warning Implementation Guide: "Using the Massachusetts Early Warning Indicator System (EWIS) and Local Data to Identify, Diagnose, Support, and Monitor Students in Grades 1-12"

      ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

      Massachusetts Department of Elementary and Secondary Education, 2014

      2014-01-01

      The purpose of this guide is to provide information on how to use early warning data, including the Massachusetts Early Warning Indicator System (EWIS), to identify, diagnose, support and monitor students in grades 1-12. It offers educators an overview of EWIS and how to effectively use these data in conjunction with local data by following a…

    16. Acoustic Noise Alters Selective Attention Processes as Indicated by Direct Current (DC) Brain Potential Changes

      PubMed Central

      Trimmel, Karin; Schätzer, Julia; Trimmel, Michael

      2014-01-01

      Acoustic environmental noise, even of low to moderate intensity, is known to adversely affect information processing in animals and humans via attention mechanisms. In particular, facilitation and inhibition of information processing are basic functions of selective attention. Such mechanisms can be investigated by analyzing brain potentials under conditions of externally directed attention (intake of environmental information) versus internally directed attention (rejection of environmental stimuli and focusing on memory/planning processes). This study investigated brain direct current (DC) potential shifts—which are discussed to represent different states of cortical activation—of tasks that require intake and rejection of environmental information under noise. It was hypothesized that without background noise rejection tasks would show more positive DC potential changes compared to intake tasks and that under noise both kinds of tasks would show positive DC shifts as an expression of cortical inhibition caused by noise. DC potential shifts during intake and rejection tasks were analyzed at 16 standard locations in 45 persons during irrelevant speech or white noise vs. control condition. Without noise, rejection tasks were associated with more positive DC potential changes compared to intake tasks. During background noise, however, this difference disappeared and both kinds of tasks led to positive DC shifts. Results suggest—besides some limitations—that noise modulates selective attention mechanisms by switching to an environmental information processing and noise rejection mode, which could represent a suggested “attention shift”. Implications for fMRI studies as well as for public health in learning and performance environments including susceptible persons are discussed. PMID:25264675

    17. Acoustic noise alters selective attention processes as indicated by direct current (DC) brain potential changes.

      PubMed

      Trimmel, Karin; Schätzer, Julia; Trimmel, Michael

      2014-09-26

      Acoustic environmental noise, even of low to moderate intensity, is known to adversely affect information processing in animals and humans via attention mechanisms. In particular, facilitation and inhibition of information processing are basic functions of selective attention. Such mechanisms can be investigated by analyzing brain potentials under conditions of externally directed attention (intake of environmental information) versus internally directed attention (rejection of environmental stimuli and focusing on memory/planning processes). This study investigated brain direct current (DC) potential shifts-which are discussed to represent different states of cortical activation-of tasks that require intake and rejection of environmental information under noise. It was hypothesized that without background noise rejection tasks would show more positive DC potential changes compared to intake tasks and that under noise both kinds of tasks would show positive DC shifts as an expression of cortical inhibition caused by noise. DC potential shifts during intake and rejection tasks were analyzed at 16 standard locations in 45 persons during irrelevant speech or white noise vs. control condition. Without noise, rejection tasks were associated with more positive DC potential changes compared to intake tasks. During background noise, however, this difference disappeared and both kinds of tasks led to positive DC shifts. Results suggest-besides some limitations-that noise modulates selective attention mechanisms by switching to an environmental information processing and noise rejection mode, which could represent a suggested "attention shift". Implications for fMRI studies as well as for public health in learning and performance environments including susceptible persons are discussed.

    18. Essential role of Glu-C66 for menaquinol oxidation indicates transmembrane electrochemical potential generation by Wolinella succinogenes fumarate reductase

      PubMed Central

      Lancaster, C. Roy D.; Groß, Roland; Haas, Alexander; Ritter, Michaela; Mäntele, Werner; Simon, Jörg; Kröger, Achim

      2000-01-01

      Quinol:fumarate reductase (QFR) is a membrane protein complex that couples the reduction of fumarate to succinate to the oxidation of quinol to quinone, in a reaction opposite to that catalyzed by the related enzyme succinate:quinone reductase (succinate dehydrogenase). In the previously determined structure of QFR from Wolinella succinogenes, the site of fumarate reduction in the flavoprotein subunit A of the enzyme was identified, but the site of menaquinol oxidation was not. In the crystal structure, the acidic residue Glu-66 of the membrane spanning, diheme-containing subunit C lines a cavity that could be occupied by the substrate menaquinol. Here we describe that, after replacement of Glu-C66 with Gln by site-directed mutagenesis, the resulting mutant is unable to grow on fumarate and the purified enzyme lacks quinol oxidation activity. X-ray crystal structure analysis of the Glu-C66 → Gln variant enzyme at 3.1-Å resolution rules out any major structural changes compared with the wild-type enzyme. The oxidation-reduction potentials of the heme groups are not significantly affected. We conclude that Glu-C66 is an essential constituent of the menaquinol oxidation site. Because Glu-C66 is oriented toward a cavity leading to the periplasm, the release of two protons on menaquinol oxidation is expected to occur to the periplasm, whereas the uptake of two protons on fumarate reduction occurs from the cytoplasm. Thus our results indicate that the reaction catalyzed by W. succinogenes QFR generates a transmembrane electrochemical potential. PMID:11186225

    19. Follicular apoptosis in the mussel (Mytella strigata) as potential indicator of environmental stress in coastal ecosystems.

      PubMed

      Garcia-Gasca, Alejandra; Leal-Tarin, Beatriz; Rios-Sicairos, Julian; Hernandez-Cornejo, Rubi; Aguilar-Zarate, Gabriela; Betancourt-Lozano, Miguel

      2010-01-01

      Follicular apoptosis in the tropical mussel Mytella strigata was assessed in three coastal lagoons located in the southern Gulf of California, Mexico. Mussels were collected from three coastal lagoons associated with different scenarios of anthropogenic stress during one year. The gonad of each mussel was dissected, weighed, and sampled for histology and apoptosis analysis by TUNEL labeling. Two apoptotic indices were used: the apoptotic index of cells (AIC) based on the number of follicular cells in apoptosis in one thousand cells counted per gonad, and the apoptotic index of follicles (AIF) based on the number of follicular cells per follicle per gonad. Both indices showed high association with each other for all developmental stages, although AIF seemed to better discriminate among sites. Higher AIF and AIC were observed at the Urias Estuary (1.6 and 1.5 respectively) ranked as highly polluted, followed by Ensenada del Pabellon (0.82 and 0.95 respectively), ranked as moderately polluted, and the Teacapan Estuary (0.57 and 0.76 respectively) ranked as slightly polluted. Our data indicate that the apoptotic index in tropical mussels could be a useful indicator of environmental stress in coastal ecosystems; however, the ecological relevance of follicular apoptosis in polluted environments needs further investigation.

    20. On the Potential of Surfers to Monitor Environmental Indicators in the Coastal Zone

      PubMed Central

      Brewin, Robert J. W.; de Mora, Lee; Jackson, Thomas; Brewin, Thomas G.; Shutler, Jamie

      2015-01-01

      The social and economic benefits of the coastal zone make it one of the most treasured environments on our planet. Yet it is vulnerable to increasing anthropogenic pressure and climate change. Coastal management aims to mitigate these pressures while augmenting the socio-economic benefits the coastal region has to offer. However, coastal management is challenged by inadequate sampling of key environmental indicators, partly due to issues relating to cost of data collection. Here, we investigate the use of recreational surfers as platforms to improve sampling coverage of environmental indicators in the coastal zone. We equipped a recreational surfer, based in the south west United Kingdom (UK), with a temperature sensor and Global Positioning System (GPS) device that they used when surfing for a period of one year (85 surfing sessions). The temperature sensor was used to derive estimates of sea-surface temperature (SST), an important environmental indicator, and the GPS device used to provide sample location and to extract information on surfer performance. SST data acquired by the surfer were compared with data from an oceanographic station in the south west UK and with satellite observations. Our results demonstrate: (i) high-quality SST data can be acquired by surfers using low cost sensors; and (ii) GPS data can provide information on surfing performance that may help motivate data collection by surfers. Using recent estimates of the UK surfing population, and frequency of surfer participation, we speculate around 40 million measurements on environmental indicators per year could be acquired at the UK coastline by surfers. This quantity of data is likely to enhance coastal monitoring and aid UK coastal management. Considering surfing is a world-wide sport, our results have global implications and the approach could be expanded to other popular marine recreational activities for coastal monitoring of environmental indicators. PMID:26154173

    1. On the Potential of Surfers to Monitor Environmental Indicators in the Coastal Zone.

      PubMed

      Brewin, Robert J W; de Mora, Lee; Jackson, Thomas; Brewin, Thomas G; Shutler, Jamie

      2015-01-01

      The social and economic benefits of the coastal zone make it one of the most treasured environments on our planet. Yet it is vulnerable to increasing anthropogenic pressure and climate change. Coastal management aims to mitigate these pressures while augmenting the socio-economic benefits the coastal region has to offer. However, coastal management is challenged by inadequate sampling of key environmental indicators, partly due to issues relating to cost of data collection. Here, we investigate the use of recreational surfers as platforms to improve sampling coverage of environmental indicators in the coastal zone. We equipped a recreational surfer, based in the south west United Kingdom (UK), with a temperature sensor and Global Positioning System (GPS) device that they used when surfing for a period of one year (85 surfing sessions). The temperature sensor was used to derive estimates of sea-surface temperature (SST), an important environmental indicator, and the GPS device used to provide sample location and to extract information on surfer performance. SST data acquired by the surfer were compared with data from an oceanographic station in the south west UK and with satellite observations. Our results demonstrate: (i) high-quality SST data can be acquired by surfers using low cost sensors; and (ii) GPS data can provide information on surfing performance that may help motivate data collection by surfers. Using recent estimates of the UK surfing population, and frequency of surfer participation, we speculate around 40 million measurements on environmental indicators per year could be acquired at the UK coastline by surfers. This quantity of data is likely to enhance coastal monitoring and aid UK coastal management. Considering surfing is a world-wide sport, our results have global implications and the approach could be expanded to other popular marine recreational activities for coastal monitoring of environmental indicators.

    2. Gremlin 1 Identifies a Skeletal Stem Cell with Bone, Cartilage, and Reticular Stromal Potential

      PubMed Central

      Worthley, Daniel L.; Churchill, Michael; Compton, Jocelyn T.; Tailor, Yagnesh; Rao, Meenakshi; Si, Yiling; Levin, Daniel; Schwartz, Matthew G.; Uygur, Aysu; Hayakawa, Yoku; Gross, Stefanie; Renz, Bernhard W.; Setlik, Wanda; Martinez, Ashley N.; Chen, Xiaowei; Nizami, Saqib; Lee, Heon Goo; Kang, H. Paco; Caldwell, Jon-Michael; Asfaha, Samuel; Westphalen, C. Benedikt; Graham, Trevor; Jin, Guangchun; Nagar, Karan; Wang, Hongshan; Kheirbek, Mazen A.; Kolhe, Alka; Carpenter, Jared; Glaire, Mark; Nair, Abhinav; Renders, Simon; Manieri, Nicholas; Muthupalani, Sureshkumar; Fox, James G.; Reichert, Maximilian; Giraud, Andrew S.; Schwabe, Robert F.; Pradere, Jean-Phillipe; Walton, Katherine; Prakash, Ajay; Gumucio, Deborah; Rustgi, Anil K.; Stappenbeck, Thaddeus S.; Friedman, Richard A.; Gershon, Michael D.; Sims, Peter; Grikscheit, Tracy; Lee, Francis Y.; Karsenty, Gerard; Mukherjee, Siddhartha; Wang, Timothy C.

      2014-01-01

      The stem cells that maintain and repair the postnatal skeleton remain undefined. One model suggests that perisinusoidal mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs) give rise to osteoblasts, chondrocytes, marrow stromal cells, and adipocytes, although the existence of these cells has not been proven through fate-mapping experiments. We demonstrate here that expression of the bone morphogenetic protein (BMP) antagonist gremlin 1 defines a population of osteochondroreticular (OCR) stem cells in the bone marrow. OCR stem cells self-renew and generate osteoblasts, chondrocytes, and reticular marrow stromal cells, but not adipocytes. OCR stem cells are concentrated within the metaphysis of long bones not in the perisinusoidal space and are needed for bone development, bone remodeling, and fracture repair. Grem1 expression also identifies intestinal reticular stem cells (iRSCs) that are cells of origin for the periepithelial intestinal mesenchymal sheath. Grem1 expression identifies distinct connective tissue stem cells in both the bone (OCR stem cells) and the intestine (iRSCs). PMID:25594183

    3. Application of pulsed-field gel electrophoresis to identify potential outbreaks of campylobacteriosis in New Zealand.

      PubMed

      Gilpin, Brent; Cornelius, Angela; Robson, Beth; Boxall, Naomi; Ferguson, Alan; Nicol, Carolyn; Henderson, Tom

      2006-02-01

      Since 2002, New Zealand's incidence of campylobacteriosis has exceeded 300 cases per 100,000 people per annum. To evaluate genetic variation in human isolates, 183 Campylobacter isolates were collected from a single clinical laboratory in Christchurch: 77 during an 8-week period in spring, and the rest 3 months later over a second 8-week period in autumn. Isolates were identified to the species level and subtyped using Penner serotyping (Campylobacter jejuni only) and pulsed-field gel electrophoresis (PFGE) using both SmaI and KpnI. Approximately two-thirds of the isolates could be grouped into clusters of between 2 and 26 isolates with indistinguishable SmaI and KpnI patterns. Less than 10% of the isolates were of the same type between the two sampling periods. The epidemiological relevance of the PFGE clusters was supported by temporal clustering, some spatial clustering, and some statistically significant demographic similarities among cases in a cluster. Conversely, patient cases yielding isolates which did not cluster with isolates from other cases were more likely to report recent overseas travel and less likely to live within larger urban centers. To identify whether these clusters actually represent common-source outbreaks, however, would require the detailed, rapid, and reiterative epidemiological investigation of cases within a PFGE cluster. The combined and timely application of subtyping and epidemiological investigation would appear to be a promising strategy for understanding campylobacteriosis in New Zealand.

    4. Potential use of ionic species for identifying source land-uses of stormwater runoff.

      PubMed

      Lee, Dong Hoon; Kim, Jin Hwi; Mendoza, Joseph A; Lee, Chang-Hee; Kang, Joo-Hyon

      2017-02-01

      Identifying critical land-uses or source areas is important to prioritize resources for cost-effective stormwater management. This study investigated the use of information on ionic composition as a fingerprint to identify the source land-use of stormwater runoff. We used 12 ionic species in stormwater runoff monitored for a total of 20 storm events at five sites with different land-use compositions during the 2012-2014 wet seasons. A stepwise forward discriminant function analysis (DFA) with the jack-knifed cross validation approach was used to select ionic species that better discriminate the land-use of its source. Of the 12 ionic species, 9 species (K(+), Mg(2+), Na(+), NH4(+), Br(-), Cl(-), F(-), NO2(-), and SO4(2-)) were selected for better performance of the DFA. The DFA successfully differentiated stormwater samples from urban, rural, and construction sites using concentrations of the ionic species (70%, 95%, and 91% of correct classification, respectively). Over 80% of the new data cases were correctly classified by the trained DFA model. When applied to data cases from a mixed land-use catchment and downstream, the DFA model showed the greater impact of urban areas and rural areas respectively in the earlier and later parts of a storm event.

    5. A microarray model system identifies potential new target genes of the proto-oncogene HOX11.

      PubMed

      Hoffmann, Katrin; Dixon, Darcelle N; Greene, Wayne K; Ford, Jette; Taplin, Ross; Kees, Ursula R

      2004-12-01

      HOX11 is a homeobox gene originally identified at a chromosomal breakpoint in T-cell acute lymphoblastic leukemia (T-ALL). It is one of the most frequently deregulated genes in T-ALL, although the precise role of HOX11 in leukemogenesis as well as in normal development remains obscure. To gain more insight into the functional role of HOX11, we utilized a microarray model system to characterize the gene expression network that it directs. Using one of our T-ALL cell lines that had been stably transfected to express HOX11 and high-density oligonucleotide HG-U95A arrays, we identified a large number of differentially expressed genes in response to the enforced expression of HOX11. We focused on examining genes found to be up-regulated according to the microarray analysis and selected three putative target genes, NFKB2, SMARCD3, and NR4A3, for further investigation. We could not only confirm the up-regulation of NR4A3 by an independent method in all clones expressing HOX11, but luciferase reporter assays demonstrated that the effect that HOX11 exerted on the proximal promoter of NR4A3 was dependent on the presence of an intact homeodomain, providing support for the idea that HOX11 manifests its regulatory function via its action as a transcription factor.

    6. Combined expressional analysis, bioinformatics and targeted proteomics identify new potential therapeutic targets in glioblastoma stem cells.

      PubMed

      Stangeland, Biljana; Mughal, Awais A; Grieg, Zanina; Sandberg, Cecilie Jonsgar; Joel, Mrinal; Nygård, Ståle; Meling, Torstein; Murrell, Wayne; Vik Mo, Einar O; Langmoen, Iver A

      2015-09-22

      Glioblastoma (GBM) is both the most common and the most lethal primary brain tumor. It is thought that GBM stem cells (GSCs) are critically important in resistance to therapy. Therefore, there is a strong rationale to target these cells in order to develop new molecular therapies.To identify molecular targets in GSCs, we compared gene expression in GSCs to that in neural stem cells (NSCs) from the adult human brain, using microarrays. Bioinformatic filtering identified 20 genes (PBK/TOPK, CENPA, KIF15, DEPDC1, CDC6, DLG7/DLGAP5/HURP, KIF18A, EZH2, HMMR/RHAMM/CD168, NOL4, MPP6, MDM1, RAPGEF4, RHBDD1, FNDC3B, FILIP1L, MCC, ATXN7L4/ATXN7L1, P2RY5/LPAR6 and FAM118A) that were consistently expressed in GSC cultures and consistently not expressed in NSC cultures. The expression of these genes was confirmed in clinical samples (TCGA and REMBRANDT). The first nine genes were highly co-expressed in all GBM subtypes and were part of the same protein-protein interaction network. Furthermore, their combined up-regulation correlated negatively with patient survival in the mesenchymal GBM subtype. Using targeted proteomics and the COGNOSCENTE database we linked these genes to GBM signalling pathways.Nine genes: PBK, CENPA, KIF15, DEPDC1, CDC6, DLG7, KIF18A, EZH2 and HMMR should be further explored as targets for treatment of GBM.

    7. Sleep-related eye symptoms and their potential for identifying driver sleepiness.

      PubMed

      Filtness, Ashleigh J; Anund, Anna; Fors, Carina; Ahlström, Christer; Akerstedt, Torbjørn; Kecklund, Göran

      2014-10-01

      The majority of individuals appear to have insight into their own sleepiness, but there is some evidence that this does not hold true for all, for example treated patients with obstructive sleep apnoea. Identification of sleep-related symptoms may help drivers determine their sleepiness, eye symptoms in particular show promise. Sixteen participants completed four motorway drives on two separate occasions. Drives were completed during daytime and night-time in both a driving simulator and on the real road. Ten eye symptoms were rated at the end of each drive, and compared with driving performance and subjective and objective sleep metrics recorded during driving. 'Eye strain', 'difficulty focusing', 'heavy eyelids' and 'difficulty keeping the eyes open' were identified as the four key sleep-related eye symptoms. Drives resulting in these eye symptoms were more likely to have high subjective sleepiness and more line crossings than drives where similar eye discomfort was not reported. Furthermore, drivers having unintentional line crossings were likely to have 'heavy eyelids' and 'difficulty keeping the eyes open'. Results suggest that drivers struggling to identify sleepiness could be assisted with the advice 'stop driving if you feel sleepy and/or have heavy eyelids or difficulty keeping your eyes open'.

    8. Event-related brain potentials as indices of mental workload and attentional allocation

      NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

      Kramer, Arthur F.; Donchin, Emanuel; Wickens, Christopher D.

      1988-01-01

      Over the past decade considerable strides were made in explicating the antecedant conditions necessary for the elicitation, and the modulation of the amplitude and latency, of a number of components of the event-related brain potential (ERP). The focus of this report is on P300. The degree to which the psychophysiological measures contribute to issues in two real-world domains (communication devices for the motor impaired and the assessment of mental workload of aircraft pilots) are examined.

    9. Fog as a Potential Indicator of a Local Water Source in Valles Marineris

      NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

      Leung, Cecilia W. S.; Rafkin, Scot C. R.; McEwen, Alfred S.

      2016-10-01

      Images from Mars Express suggest that water ice fog may be present in Valles Marineris while absent from the surrounding plateau. Using a regional atmospheric model, we investigate planetary boundary layer processes and discuss the implications of these potential water ice fog. Results from our simulations show that the temperature inside Valles Marineris appears warmer relative to the plateaus outside at all times of day. From the modeled temperatures, we calculate saturation vapor pressures and saturation mixing to determine the amount of water vapor in the atmosphere for cloud formation. For a well-mixed atmosphere, saturated conditions in the canyon imply supersaturated conditions outside the canyon where it is colder. Consequently, low clouds should be everywhere. This is generally not the case. Based on potential fog observations inside the canyon, if we assume the plateau is just sub-saturated, and the canyon bottom is just saturated, the resulting difference in mixing ratios represents the minimum amount of vapor required for the atmosphere to be saturated, and for potential fog to form. Under these conditions, we determined that the air inside the canyon would require a 4-7 times enrichment in water vapor at saturation compared to outside the canyon. This suggests a local source of water vapor is required to explain water ice fog appearing within the confines of Valles Marineris on Mars.

    10. Ocean-bottom Pressure Signals as Potential Identifiers of Tsunami Earthquakes in the Near Field

      NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

      Salaree, A.; Okal, E. A.

      2015-12-01

      The real-time detection of "tsunami earthquakes" remains a challenge, especially in the near field. These events are characterized by an anomalously slow seismic rupture, with their true long-period seismic moment, and hence, tsunami potential, deceptively concealed from short-period waves and in particular felt accelerations. In the context of the deployment of long-period ocean-bottom sensors in epicentral areas, we explore simple but robust ways to quantify source parameters which could potentially lead to the real-time identification of tsunami earthquakes in the near field. We use records of 2011 Tohoku aftershocks on the JAMSTEC stations deployed off the coast of Japan in the wake of the mainshock. Because seismic phases are not resolvable at short distances, we simply consider an integrated measurement Ω of the square of pressure variations, sharing the philosophy of Boatwright and Choy's (1986) seismic energy, and compare this parameter, scaled to seismic moment, with other discriminants, such as Newman and Okal's (1998) energy-to-moment ratio, Θ, Okal et al.'s (2002) T-wave parameter Γ, or Okal's (2013) parameter Φ combining (in the far field) body-wave duration and energy. We also consider the duration of the pressure signal, and examine its relation to Ω.

    11. Molecular markers and imaging tools to identify malignant potential in Barrett's esophagus

      PubMed Central

      Bennett, Michael; Mashimo, Hiroshi

      2014-01-01

      Due to its rapidly rising incidence and high mortality, esophageal adenocarcinoma is a major public health concern, particularly in Western countries. The steps involved in the progression from its predisposing condition, gastroesophageal reflux disease, to its premalignant disorder, Barrett’s esophagus, and to cancer, are incompletely understood. Current screening and surveillance methods are limited by the lack of population-wide utility, incomplete sampling of standard biopsies, and subjectivity of evaluation. Advances in endoscopic ablation have raised the hope of effective therapy for eradication of high-risk Barrett’s lesions, but improvements are needed in determining when to apply this treatment and how to follow patients clinically. Researchers have evaluated numerous potential molecular biomarkers with the goal of detecting dysplasia, with varying degrees of success. The combination of biomarker panels with epidemiologic risk factors to yield clinical risk scoring systems is promising. New approaches to sample tissue may also be combined with these biomarkers for less invasive screening and surveillance. The development of novel endoscopic imaging tools in recent years has the potential to markedly improve detection of small foci of dysplasia in vivo. Current and future efforts will aim to determine the combination of markers and imaging modalities that will most effectively improve the rate of early detection of high-risk lesions in Barrett’s esophagus. PMID:25400987

    12. A potential to monitor nutrients as an indicator of rangeland quality using space borne remote sensing

      NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

      Ramoelo, A.; Cho, M. A.; Madonsela, S.; Mathieu, R.; van der Korchove, R.; Kaszta, Z.; Wolf, E.

      2014-02-01

      Global change consisting of land use and climate change could have huge impacts on food security and the health of various ecosystems. Leaf nitrogen (N) is one of the key factors limiting agricultural production and ecosystem functioning. Leaf N can be used as an indicator of rangeland quality which could provide information for the farmers, decision makers, land planners and managers. Leaf N plays a crucial role in understanding the feeding patterns and distribution of wildlife and livestock. Assessment of this vegetation parameter using conventional methods at landscape scale level is time consuming and tedious. Remote sensing provides a synoptic view of the landscape, which engenders an opportunity to assess leaf N over wider rangeland areas from protected to communal areas. Estimation of leaf N has been successful during peak productivity or high biomass and limited studies estimated leaf N in dry season. The objective of this study is to monitor leaf N as an indicator of rangeland quality using WorldView 2 satellite images in the north-eastern part of South Africa. Series of field work to collect samples for leaf N were undertaken in the beginning of May (end of wet season) and July (dry season). Several conventional and red edge based vegetation indices were computed. Simple regression was used to develop prediction model for leaf N. Using bootstrapping, indicator of precision and accuracy were analyzed to select a best model for the combined data sets (May and July). The may model for red edge based simple ratio explained over 90% of leaf N variations. The model developed from the combined data sets with normalized difference vegetation index explained 62% of leaf N variation, and this is a model used to estimate and map leaf N for two seasons. The study demonstrated that leaf N could be monitored using high spatial resolution with the red edge band capability.

    13. Identifying native-like protein structures using physics-based potentials.

      PubMed

      Dominy, Brian N; Brooks, Charles L

      2002-01-15

      As the field of structural genomics matures, new methods will be required that can accurately and rapidly distinguish reliable structure predictions from those that are more dubious. We present a method based on the CHARMM gas phase implicit hydrogen force field in conjunction with a generalized Born implicit solvation term that allows one to make such discrimination. We begin by analyzing pairs of threaded structures from the EMBL database, and find that it is possible to identify the misfolded structures with over 90% accuracy. Further, we find that misfolded states are generally favored by the solvation term due to the mispairing of favorable intramolecular ionic contacts. We also examine 29 sets of 29 misfolded globin sequences from Levitt's "Decoys 'R' Us" database generated using a sequence homology-based method. Again, we find that discrimination is possible with approximately 90% accuracy. Also, even in these less distorted structures, mispairing of ionic contacts results in a more favorable solvation energy for misfolded states. This is also found to be the case for collapsed, partially folded conformations of CspA and protein G taken from folding free energy calculations. We also find that the inclusion of the generalized Born solvation term, in postprocess energy evaluation, improves the correlation between structural similarity and energy in the globin database. This significantly improves the reliability of the hypothesis that more energetically favorable structures are also more similar to the native conformation. Additionally, we examine seven extensive collections of misfolded structures created by Park and Levitt using a four-state reduced model also contained in the "Decoys 'R' Us" database. Results from these large databases confirm those obtained in the EMBL and misfolded globin databases concerning predictive accuracy, the energetic advantage of misfolded proteins regarding the solvation component, and the improved correlation between energy

    14. Foxa2 identifies a cardiac progenitor population with ventricular differentiation potential

      PubMed Central

      Bardot, Evan; Calderon, Damelys; Santoriello, Francis; Han, Songyan; Cheung, Kakit; Jadhav, Bharati; Burtscher, Ingo; Artap, Stanley; Jain, Rajan; Epstein, Jonathan; Lickert, Heiko; Gouon-Evans, Valerie; Sharp, Andrew J.; Dubois, Nicole C.

      2017-01-01

      The recent identification of progenitor populations that contribute to the developing heart in a distinct spatial and temporal manner has fundamentally improved our understanding of cardiac development. However, the mechanisms that direct atrial versus ventricular specification remain largely unknown. Here we report the identification of a progenitor population that gives rise primarily to cardiovascular cells of the ventricles and only to few atrial cells (<5%) of the differentiated heart. These progenitors are specified during gastrulation, when they transiently express Foxa2, a gene not previously implicated in cardiac development. Importantly, Foxa2+ cells contribute to previously identified progenitor populations in a defined pattern and ratio. Lastly, we describe an analogous Foxa2+ population during differentiation of embryonic stem cells. Together, these findings provide insight into the developmental origin of ventricular and atrial cells, and may lead to the establishment of new strategies for generating chamber-specific cell types from pluripotent stem cells. PMID:28195173

    15. Use of laboratory and field testing to identify potential production problems in the Troll field

      SciTech Connect

      Hartley, R.; Jadid, M.B.

      1989-02-01

      The areal extent of the oil found in Troll made it clear at a very early stage in the field's appraisal that subsea wells would be required if the oil were developed. Owing to cooling in the subsea flowline, subsea wells can be expected to pose more production chemistry problems than would be expected with conventional platform wells. Consequently, a number of laboratory tests were carried out during the appraisal campaign to identify problems to be expected with scaling, foaming, emulsification, wax deposition, and hydrates. Dehydration and wax deposition tests were also carried out offshore during appraisal-well testing. These tests are described, together with the methods subsequently adopted to minimize future production problems.

    16. Integrative Analysis of Genomics and Transcriptome Data to Identify Potential Functional Genes of BMDs in Females.

      PubMed

      Chen, Yuan-Cheng; Guo, Yan-Fang; He, Hao; Lin, Xu; Wang, Xia-Fang; Zhou, Rou; Li, Wen-Ting; Pan, Dao-Yan; Shen, Jie; Deng, Hong-Wen

      2016-05-01

      Osteoporosis is known to be highly heritable. However, to date, the findings from more than 20 genome-wide association studies (GWASs) have explained less than 6% of genetic risks. Studies suggest that the missing heritability data may be because of joint effects among genes. To identify novel heritability for osteoporosis, we performed a system-level study on bone mineral density (BMD) by weighted gene coexpression network analysis (WGCNA), using the largest GWAS data set for BMD in the field, Genetic Factors for Osteoporosis Consortium (GEFOS-2), and a transcriptomic gene expression data set generated from transiliac bone biopsies in women. A weighted gene coexpression network was generated for 1574 genes with GWAS nominal evidence of association (p ≤ 0.05) based on dissimilarity measurement on the expression data. Twelve distinct gene modules were identified, and four modules showed nominally significant associations with BMD (p ≤ 0.05), but only one module, the yellow module, demonstrated a good correlation between module membership (MM) and gene significance (GS), suggesting that the yellow module serves an important biological role in bone regulation. Interestingly, through characterization of module content and topology, the yellow module was found to be significantly enriched with contractile fiber part (GO:044449), which is widely recognized as having a close relationship between muscle and bone. Furthermore, detailed submodule analyses of important candidate genes (HOMER1, SPTBN1) by all edges within the yellow module implied significant enrichment of functional connections between bone and cytoskeletal protein binding. Our study yielded novel information from system genetics analyses of GWAS data jointly with transcriptomic data. The findings highlighted a module and several genes in the model as playing important roles in the regulation of bone mass in females, which may yield novel insights into the genetic basis of osteoporosis. © 2016

    17. Kinase analysis in alcoholic hepatitis identifies p90RSK as a potential mediator of liver fibrogenesis

      PubMed Central

      Morales-Ibanez, Oriol; Affò, Silvia; Rodrigo-Torres, Daniel; Blaya, Delia; Millán, Cristina; Coll, Mar; Perea, Luis; Odena, Gemma; Knorpp, Thomas; Templin, Markus F; Moreno, Montserrat; Altamirano, José; Miquel, Rosa; Arroyo, Vicente; Ginès, Pere; Caballería, Juan; Sancho-Bru, Pau; Bataller, Ramon

      2015-01-01

      Objective Alcoholic hepatitis (AH) is often associated with advanced fibrosis, which negatively impacts survival. We aimed at identifying kinases deregulated in livers from patients with AH and advanced fibrosis in order to discover novel molecular targets. Design Extensive phosphoprotein analysis by reverse phase protein microarrays was performed in AH (n=12) and normal human livers (n=7). Ribosomal S6 kinase (p90RSK) hepatic expression was assessed by qPCR, Western blot and immunohistochemistry. Kaempferol was used as a selective pharmacological inhibitor of the p90RSK pathway to assess the regulation of experimentally-induced liver fibrosis and injury, using in vivo and in vitro approaches. Results Proteomic analysis identified p90RSK as one of the most deregulated kinases in AH. Hepatic p90RSK gene and protein expression was also upregulated in livers with chronic liver disease. Immunohistochemistry studies showed increased p90RSK staining in areas of active fibrogenesis in cirrhotic livers. Therapeutic administration of kaempferol to carbon tetrachloride-treated mice resulted in decreased hepatic collagen deposition, and expression of profibrogenic and proinflammatory genes, compared to vehicle administration. In addition, kaempferol reduced the extent of hepatocellular injury and degree of apoptosis. In primary hepatic stellate cells, kaempferol and small interfering RNA decreased activation of p90RSK, which in turn regulated key profibrogenic actions. In primary hepatocytes, kaempferol attenuated proapoptotic signalling. Conclusions p90RSK is upregulated in patients with chronic liver disease and mediates liver fibrogenesis in vivo and in vitro. These results suggest that the p90RSK pathway could be a new therapeutic approach for liver diseases characterised by advanced fibrosis. PMID:25652085

    18. Web-based Tool Identifies and Quantifies Potential Cost Savings Measures at the Hanford Site

      SciTech Connect

      Renevitz, Marisa J.; Peschong, Jon C.; Charboneau, Briant L.; Simpson, Brett C.

      2014-01-09

      The Technical Improvement system is an approachable web-based tool that is available to Hanford DOE staff, site contractors, and general support service contractors as part of the baseline optimization effort underway at the Hanford Site. Finding and implementing technical improvements are a large part of DOE’s cost savings efforts. The Technical Improvement dashboard is a key tool for brainstorming and monitoring the progress of submitted baseline optimization and potential cost/schedule efficiencies. The dashboard is accessible to users over the Hanford Local Area Network (HLAN) and provides a highly visual and straightforward status to management on the ideas provided, alleviating the need for resource intensive weekly and monthly reviews.

    19. Identifying potential environmental impacts of waste handling strategies in textile industry.

      PubMed

      Yacout, Dalia M M; Hassouna, M S

      2016-08-01

      Waste management is a successful instrument to minimize generated waste and improve environmental conditions. In spite of the large share of developing countries in the textile industry, limited information is available concerning the waste management strategies implemented for textiles on those countries and their environmental impacts. In the current study, two waste management approaches for hazardous solid waste treatment of acrylic fibers (landfill and incineration) were investigated. The main research questions were: What are the different impacts of each waste management strategy? Which waste management strategy is more ecofriendly? Life cycle assessment was employed in order to model the environmental impacts of each waste streaming approach separately then compare them together. Results revealed that incineration was the more ecofriendly approach. Highest impacts of both approaches were on ecotoxicity and carcinogenic potentials due to release of metals from pigment wastes. Landfill had an impact of 46.8 % on human health as compared to 28 % by incineration. Incineration impact on ecosystem quality was higher than landfill impact (68.4 and 51.3 %, respectively). As for resources category, incineration had a higher impact than landfill (3.5 and 2.0 %, respectively). Those impacts could be mitigated if state-of-the-art landfill or incinerator were used and could be reduced by applying waste to energy approaches for both management systems In conclusion, shifting waste treatment from landfill to incineration would decrease the overall environmental impacts and allow energy recovery. The potential of waste to energy approach by incineration with heat recovery could be considered in further studies. Future research is needed in order to assess the implementation of waste management systems and the preferable waste management strategies in the textile industry on developing countries.

    20. Gene expression-based chemical genomics identifies potential therapeutic drugs in hepatocellular carcinoma.

      PubMed

      Chen, Ming-Huang; Yang, Wu-Lung R; Lin, Kuan-Ting; Liu, Chia-Hung; Liu, Yu-Wen; Huang, Kai-Wen; Chang, Peter Mu-Hsin; Lai, Jin-Mei; Hsu, Chun-Nan; Chao, Kun-Mao; Kao, Cheng-Yan; Huang, Chi-Ying F

      2011-01-01

      Hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) is an aggressive tumor with a poor prognosis. Currently, only sorafenib is approved by the FDA for advanced HCC treatment; therefore, there is an urgent need to discover candidate therapeutic drugs for HCC. We hypothesized that if a drug signature could reverse, at least in part, the gene expression signature of HCC, it might have the potential to inhibit HCC-related pathways and thereby treat HCC. To test this hypothesis, we first built an integrative platform, the "Encyclopedia of Hepatocellular Carcinoma genes Online 2", dubbed EHCO2, to systematically collect, organize and compare the publicly available data from HCC studies. The resulting collection includes a total of 4,020 genes. To systematically query the Connectivity Map (CMap), which includes 6,100 drug-mediated expression profiles, we further designed various gene signature selection and enrichment methods, including a randomization technique, majority vote, and clique analysis. Subsequently, 28 out of 50 prioritized drugs, including tanespimycin, trichostatin A, thioguanosine, and several anti-psychotic drugs with anti-tumor activities, were validated via MTT cell viability assays and clonogenic assays in HCC cell lines. To accelerate their future clinical use, possibly through drug-repurposing, we selected two well-established drugs to test in mice, chlorpromazine and trifluoperazine. Both drugs inhibited orthotopic liver tumor growth. In conclusion, we successfully discovered and validated existing drugs for potential HCC therapeutic use with the pipeline of Connectivity Map analysis and lab verification, thereby suggesting the usefulness of this procedure to accelerate drug repurposing for HCC treatment.

    1. Assessment of the in vitro antimicrobial activity of Lactobacillus species for identifying new potential antibiotics.

      PubMed

      Dubourg, Grégory; Elsawi, Ziena; Raoult, Didier

      2015-11-01

      The bacteriocin-mediated antimicrobial properties of Lactobacillus spp. have been widely studied, leading to the use of these micro-organisms in the food industry as preservative agents against foodborne pathogens. In an era in which antibiotic resistance is becoming a public health issue, the antimicrobial activity of Lactobacillus spp. could be used for the discovery of new potential antibiotics. Thus, it is essential to have an accurate method of screening the production of antimicrobial agents by prokaryotes. Many in vitro assays have been published to date, largely concerning but not limited to Lactobacillus spp. However, these methods mainly use the spot-on-the-lawn method, which is prone to contamination during the overlay stage, with protocols using methanol vapours or the reverse side agar technique being applied to avoid such contamination. In this study, a method combining the spot-on-the-lawn and well diffusion methods was tested, permitting clear identification of inhibition zones from eight Lactobacillus spp. towards clinical isolates of 12 species (11 bacteria and 1 yeast) commonly found in human pathology. Lactobacillus plantarum CIP 106786 and Lactobacillus rhamnosus CSUR P567 exhibited the widest antimicrobial activity, whereas Lactobacillus acidophilus strain DSM 20079 was relatively inactive. In addition, the putative MIC(50) of L. rhamnosus against Proteus mirabilis was estimated at 1.1×10(9)CFU/mL using culture broth dilution. In conclusion, considering the increasing cultivable bacterial human repertoire, these findings open the way of an effective method to screen in vitro for the production of potential antimicrobial compounds.

    2. Teacher- and school-level predictors of teacher efficacy and burnout: identifying potential areas for support.

      PubMed

      Pas, Elise T; Bradshaw, Catherine P; Hershfeldt, Patricia A

      2012-02-01

      Although several studies relate low teacher efficacy and high burnout to the quality of instruction and students' academic achievement, there has been limited research examining factors that predict teacher efficacy and burnout. The current study employed a longitudinal, multilevel modeling approach to examine the influence of teacher- and school-level factors on the development of both teacher efficacy and burnout. Data were collected 3 times across 2 academic years from 600 teachers at 31 elementary schools. The results indicated that both teacher efficacy and burnout increased over time. Teacher preparedness and perceptions of teacher affiliation and leadership were significantly associated with both the intercept and growth of teacher efficacy and burnout; however, school-level factors were generally unrelated to both outcomes. Implications for screenings and teacher-targeted interventions are discussed.

    3. 40 CFR Table 5 to Subpart Jj of... - List of VHAP of Potential Concern Identified by Industry

      Code of Federal Regulations, 2012 CFR

      2012-07-01

      ... 40 Protection of Environment 11 2012-07-01 2012-07-01 false List of VHAP of Potential Concern Identified by Industry 5 Table 5 to Subpart JJ of Part 63 Protection of Environment ENVIRONMENTAL PROTECTION... SOURCE CATEGORIES (CONTINUED) National Emission Standards for Wood Furniture Manufacturing Operations...

    4. 40 CFR Table 5 to Subpart Jj of... - List of VHAP of Potential Concern Identified by Industry

      Code of Federal Regulations, 2011 CFR

      2011-07-01

      ... 40 Protection of Environment 10 2011-07-01 2011-07-01 false List of VHAP of Potential Concern Identified by Industry 5 Table 5 to Subpart JJ of Part 63 Protection of Environment ENVIRONMENTAL PROTECTION... SOURCE CATEGORIES (CONTINUED) National Emission Standards for Wood Furniture Manufacturing Operations...

    5. 40 CFR Table 5 to Subpart Jj of... - List of VHAP of Potential Concern Identified by Industry

      Code of Federal Regulations, 2013 CFR

      2013-07-01

      ... 40 Protection of Environment 11 2013-07-01 2013-07-01 false List of VHAP of Potential Concern Identified by Industry 5 Table 5 to Subpart JJ of Part 63 Protection of Environment ENVIRONMENTAL PROTECTION... SOURCE CATEGORIES (CONTINUED) National Emission Standards for Wood Furniture Manufacturing Operations...

    6. A NEW HIGH RESOLUTION MASS SPECTROMETRY TECHNIQUE FOR IDENTIFYING PHARMACEUTICALS AND POTENTIAL ENDOCRINE DISRUPTORS IN DRINKING WATER SOURCES

      EPA Science Inventory

      A New High Resolution Mass Spectrometry Technique for Identifying Pharmaceuticals and Potential Endocrine Disruptors in Drinking Water Sources

      Andrew H. Grange and G. Wayne Sovocool U.S.EPA, ORD, NERL, ESD, ECB, P.O. Box 93478, Las Vegas, NV 891933478

      Mass spectra...

    7. Results of an Assessment to Identify Potential Barriers to Sustainable Agriculture on American Indian Reservations in the Western United States

      ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

      Singletary, Loretta; Emm, Staci; Brummer, Fara Ann; Hill, George C.; Lewis, Steve; Hebb, Vicki

      2016-01-01

      Purpose: This paper reports the results of survey research conducted with tribal producers between 2011 and 2012 on 19 of the largest American Indian reservations in Idaho, Nevada, North Dakota, Oregon, South Dakota, and Washington. The purpose of the research was to identify potential barriers to sustainable agriculture on reservation lands. This…

    8. USE OF qRTPCR TO IDENTIFY POTENTIAL BIOMARKERS OF BROMATE EXPOSURE IN F344 MALE RAT KIDNEYS

      EPA Science Inventory

      Potassium bromate (KBrO3) is a drinking water disinfection by-product that is nephrotoxic and carcinogenic. To identify potential biomarkers of carcinogenicity, male F344 rats were chronically exposed to a carcinogenic dose (400mg/l) of KBrO3 in their drinking water. Kidneys were...

    9. Geostatistical Microscale Study of Magnetic Susceptibility in Soil Profile and Magnetic Indicators of Potential Soil Pollution.

      PubMed

      Zawadzki, Jarosław; Fabijańczyk, Piotr; Magiera, Tadeusz; Rachwał, Marzena

      Directional variograms, along the soil profile, can be useful and precise tool that can be used to increase the precision of the assessment of soil pollution. The detail analysis of spatial variability in the soil profile can be also an important part of the standardization of soil magnetometry as a screening method for an assessment of soil pollution related to the dust deposition. The goal of this study was to investigate the correlation between basic parameters of spatial correlations of magnetic susceptibility in the soil profile, such as a range of correlation and a sill, and selected magnetometric indicators of soil pollution. Magnetic indicators were an area under the curve of magnetic susceptibility versus a depth in the soil profile, values of magnetic susceptibility at depths ranging from 1 to 10 cm, and maximum and background values of magnetic susceptibility in the soil profile. These indicators were previously analyzed in the literature. The results showed that a range of correlation of magnetic susceptibility was significantly correlated with magnetic susceptibility measured at depths 1, 2, and 3 cm. It suggests that a range of correlation is a good measure of pollutants' dispersion in the soil profile. The sill of the variogram of magnetic susceptibility was found to be significantly correlated with the area under the curve of plot of magnetic susceptibility that is related to the soil pollution. In consequence, the parameters of microscale spatial variability of magnetic susceptibility in s soil profile are important measures that take into consideration the spatial aspect of s soil pollution.

    10. Corning Inc.: Proposed Changes at Glass Plant Indicate $26 Million in Potential Savings

      SciTech Connect

      2004-01-01

      In 2000, the Corning glass plant in Greenville, Ohio, consumed almost 114 million kWh of electricity and nearly 308,000 MMBtu of natural gas in its glassmaking processes for a total cost of approximately $6.4 million. A plant-wide assessment indicated that improvement projects could save nearly $26 million and reduce natural gas use by 122,900 MMBtu per year, reduce electrical use by 72,300,000 kWh per year, and reduce CO2 emissions by 180 million pounds per year.

    11. Potential Lung Nodules Identification for Characterization by Variable Multistep Threshold and Shape Indices from CT Images

      PubMed Central

      Iqbal, Saleem; Iqbal, Khalid; Shaukat, Arslan; Khanum, Aasia

      2014-01-01

      Computed tomography (CT) is an important imaging modality. Physicians, surgeons, and oncologists prefer CT scan for diagnosis of lung cancer. However, some nodules are missed in CT scan. Computer aided diagnosis methods are useful for radiologists for detection of these nodules and early diagnosis of lung cancer. Early detection of malignant nodule is helpful for treatment. Computer aided diagnosis of lung cancer involves lung segmentation, potential nodules identification, features extraction from the potential nodules, and classification of the nodules. In this paper, we are presenting an automatic method for detection and segmentation of lung nodules from CT scan for subsequent features extraction and classification. Contribution of the work is the detection and segmentation of small sized nodules, low and high contrast nodules, nodules attached with vasculature, nodules attached to pleura membrane, and nodules in close vicinity of the diaphragm and lung wall in one-go. The particular techniques of the method are multistep threshold for the nodule detection and shape index threshold for false positive reduction. We used 60 CT scans of “Lung Image Database Consortium-Image Database Resource Initiative” taken by GE medical systems LightSpeed16 scanner as dataset and correctly detected 92% nodules. The results are reproducible. PMID:25506388

    12. Potential lung nodules identification for characterization by variable multistep threshold and shape indices from CT images.

      PubMed

      Iqbal, Saleem; Iqbal, Khalid; Arif, Fahim; Shaukat, Arslan; Khanum, Aasia

      2014-01-01

      Computed tomography (CT) is an important imaging modality. Physicians, surgeons, and oncologists prefer CT scan for diagnosis of lung cancer. However, some nodules are missed in CT scan. Computer aided diagnosis methods are useful for radiologists for detection of these nodules and early diagnosis of lung cancer. Early detection of malignant nodule is helpful for treatment. Computer aided diagnosis of lung cancer involves lung segmentation, potential nodules identification, features extraction from the potential nodules, and classification of the nodules. In this paper, we are presenting an automatic method for detection and segmentation of lung nodules from CT scan for subsequent features extraction and classification. Contribution of the work is the detection and segmentation of small sized nodules, low and high contrast nodules, nodules attached with vasculature, nodules attached to pleura membrane, and nodules in close vicinity of the diaphragm and lung wall in one-go. The particular techniques of the method are multistep threshold for the nodule detection and shape index threshold for false positive reduction. We used 60 CT scans of "Lung Image Database Consortium-Image Database Resource Initiative" taken by GE medical systems LightSpeed16 scanner as dataset and correctly detected 92% nodules. The results are reproducible.

    13. Potential of a sequence-based antigenic distance measure to indicate equine influenza vaccine strain efficacy.

      PubMed

      Daly, Janet M; Elton, Debra

      2013-12-09

      The calculation of p(epitope) values, a sequence-based measure of antigenic distance between strains, was developed for human influenza. The potential to apply the p(epitope) value to equine influenza vaccine strain selection was assessed. There was a negative correlation between p(epitope) value and vaccine efficacy for pairs of vaccine and challenge strains used in cross-protection studies in ponies that just reached statistical significance (p=0.046) only if one pair of viruses was excluded from the analysis. Thus the p(epitope) value has potential to provide additional data to consider in the decision-making process for updating equine influenza vaccine strains. However, further work is required to define the epitopes of the equine H3N8 haemagglutinin protein recognised by equine antibodies, which could lead to refinement of the p(epitope) value calculation. Furthermore, other factors such as vaccine potency and virulence of circulating strains may also influence vaccine efficacy.

    14. Brain potentials indicate the effect of other observers' emotions on perceptions of facial attractiveness.

      PubMed

      Huang, Yujing; Pan, Xuwei; Mo, Yan; Ma, Qingguo

      2016-03-23

      Perceptions of facial attractiveness are sensitive to emotional expression of the perceived face. However, little is known about whether the emotional expression on the face of another observer of the perceived face may have an effect on perceptions of facial attractiveness. The present study used event-related potential technique to examine social influence of the emotional expression on the face of another observer of the perceived face on perceptions of facial attractiveness. The experiment consisted of two phases. In the first phase, a neutral target face was paired with two images of individuals gazing at the target face with smiling, fearful or neutral expressions. In the second phase, participants were asked to judge the attractiveness of the target face. We found that a target face was more attractive when other observers positively gazing at the target face in contrast to the condition when other observers were negative. Additionally, the results of brain potentials showed that the visual positive component P3 with peak latency from 270 to 330 ms was larger after participants observed the target face paired with smiling individuals than the target face paired with neutral individuals. These findings suggested that facial attractiveness of an individual may be influenced by the emotional expression on the face of another observer of the perceived face.

    15. Using self-organizing maps to identify potential halo white dwarfs.

      PubMed

      García-Berro, Enrique; Torres, Santiago; Isern, Jordi

      2003-01-01

      We present the results of an unsupervised classification of the disk and halo white dwarf populations in the solar neighborhood. The classification is done by merging the results of detailed Monte Carlo (MC) simulations, which reproduce very well the characteristics of the white dwarf populations in the solar neighborhood, with a catalogue of real stars. The resulting composite catalogue is analyzed using a competitive learning algorithm. In particular we have used the so-called self-organized map. The MC simulated stars are used as tracers and help in identifying the resulting clusters. The results of such an strategy turn out to be quite satisfactory, suggesting that this approach can provide an useful framework for analyzing large databases of white dwarfs with well determined kinematical, spatial and photometric properties once they become available in the next decade. Moreover, the results are of astrophysical interest as well, since a straightforward interpretation of several recent astronomical observations, like the detected microlensing events in the direction of the Magellanic Clouds, the possible detection of high proper motion white dwarfs in the Hubble Deep Field and the discovery of high velocity white dwarfs in the solar neighborhood, suggests that a fraction of the baryonic dark matter component of our galaxy could be in the form of old and dim halo white dwarfs.

    16. Yeast model identifies ENTPD6 as a potential non-obstructive azoospermia pathogenic gene

      PubMed Central

      Wang, Qian; Liu, Chao; Tang, Chaoming; Guo, Huiping; Liu, Yujiao; Wang, Lina; Zhao, Haichao; Shang, Yongliang; Wen, Yang; Lin, Yuan; Zhou, Tao; Zhou, Zuomin; Dong, Wen; Hu, Zhibin; Guo, Xuejiang; Sha, Jiahao; Li, Wei

      2015-01-01

      Approximately ten percent of male infertility is caused by non-obstructive azoospermia (NOA), but the etiologies of many NOA remain elusive. Recently, a genome-wide association study (GWAS) of NOA in Han Chinese men was conducted, and only a few genetic variants associated with NOA were found, which might have resulted from genetic heterogeneity. However, those variants that lack genome-wide significance might still be essential for fertility. Functional analysis of genes surrounding these variants in Drosophila identified some spermatogenesis-essential genes. As a complementary method of Drosophila screening, SK1 background Saccharomvces cerevisiae was used as a model to screen meiosis-related genes from the NOA GWAS data in this study. After functional screening, GDA1 (orthologous to humanENTPD6) was found to be a novel meiosis-related gene. The deletion of GDA1 resulted in the failure of yeast sporulation. Further investigations showed that Gda1p was important for pre-meiotic S phase entry. Interestingly, the meiotic role of Gda1p was dependent on its guanosine diphosphatase activity, but not it’s cytoplasmic, transmembrane or stem domains. These yeast data suggest that ENTPD6 may be a novel meiosis-associated NOA-related gene, and the yeast model provides a good approach to analyze GWAS results of NOA. PMID:26152596

    17. A Delphi exercise used to identify potential causes of variation in litter size of Ontario swine

      PubMed Central

      Dewey, Catherine E.; Martin, S. Wayne; Friendship, Robert M.; Kennedy, Brain

      1992-01-01

      Forty-eight people, considered to the swine experts, were asked to collaborate in a Delphi exercise to identify the factors which they believed affect litter size in Ontario swine. The panel included 16 animal scientists, 16 pork producers, and 16 veterinarians in swine practice. The ten factors with the highest ratings were parity of the sow, mycotoxins in the feed, infections with porcine parvovirus or Leptospira spp., breeding gilts on their second versus first observed estrus, the timing of breeding with respect to the onset of estrus, purebred versus crossbred sows, boar overuse (bred by a boar that was mated more than six times per week), pen versus hand mating, age of gilt when first bred, and body condition of the sow at the time of conception. The experts did not agree about the effect on litter size of the sow's previous lactation, factors ensuring adequate nutrient intake during lactation, health of the sow and the boar, breed of a purebred sow, or the ease of mating the sow. Key items in the use of the Delphi technique to arrive at a consensus are discussed. PMID:17423928

    18. Yeast model identifies ENTPD6 as a potential non-obstructive azoospermia pathogenic gene.

      PubMed

      Wang, Qian; Liu, Chao; Tang, Chaoming; Guo, Huiping; Liu, Yujiao; Wang, Lina; Zhao, Haichao; Shang, Yongliang; Wen, Yang; Lin, Yuan; Zhou, Tao; Zhou, Zuomin; Dong, Wen; Hu, Zhibin; Guo, Xuejiang; Sha, Jiahao; Li, Wei

      2015-07-08

      Approximately ten percent of male infertility is caused by non-obstructive azoospermia (NOA), but the etiologies of many NOA remain elusive. Recently, a genome-wide association study (GWAS) of NOA in Han Chinese men was conducted, and only a few genetic variants associated with NOA were found, which might have resulted from genetic heterogeneity. However, those variants that lack genome-wide significance might still be essential for fertility. Functional analysis of genes surrounding these variants in Drosophila identified some spermatogenesis-essential genes. As a complementary method of Drosophila screening, SK1 background Saccharomvces cerevisiae was used as a model to screen meiosis-related genes from the NOA GWAS data in this study. After functional screening, GDA1 (orthologous to humanENTPD6) was found to be a novel meiosis-related gene. The deletion of GDA1 resulted in the failure of yeast sporulation. Further investigations showed that Gda1p was important for pre-meiotic S phase entry. Interestingly, the meiotic role of Gda1p was dependent on its guanosine diphosphatase activity, but not it's cytoplasmic, transmembrane or stem domains. These yeast data suggest that ENTPD6 may be a novel meiosis-associated NOA-related gene, and the yeast model provides a good approach to analyze GWAS results of NOA.

    19. A genomic approach to susceptibility and pathogenesis leads to identifying potential novel therapeutic targets in androgenetic alopecia.

      PubMed

      Dey-Rao, R; Sinha, A A

      2017-03-02

      We studied genome-wide gene expression from bald and haired scalp of individuals to evaluate pathogenic mechanisms underlying the development and progression of androgenetic alopecia (AGA). Unbiased analyses revealed a "bald pathology" based signature. Ontology enrichment analyses of the differentially expressed genes (DEGs) underscored apoptosis, cell proliferation, perturbed neurological pathways, and WNT signaling as central drivers of the hair loss process. Interactome analysis uncovered several known and novel key transcriptional regulators potentially affecting disease pathogenesis both within and "hidden" from the dataset. One DEG mapped within one of the fourteen identified transcriptionally active "hot spots" across the genome and coincided with a previous AGA-associated gene. The remaining DEGs within the "hot spots" offer an additional set of potential disease linked loci that may help to guide future studies aimed at identifying disease risk genes. Finally, we used in silico analyses to identify five molecular targets for exploration in future AGA therapies.

    20. In silico approaches to identify the potential inhibitors of glutamate carboxypeptidase II (GCPII) for neuroprotection.

      PubMed

      Naushad, Shaik Mohammad; Janaki Ramaiah, M; Stanley, Balraj Alex; Prasanna Lakshmi, S; Vishnu Priya, J; Hussain, Tajamul; Alrokayan, Salman A; Kutala, Vijay Kumar

      2016-10-07

      To develop a potential inhibitor for glutamate carboxypeptidase II (GCPII) effective against all the eight common genetic variants reported, PyMOL molecular visualization system was used to generate models of variants using the crystal structure of GCPII i.e. 2OOT as a template. High-throughput virtual screening of 29 compounds revealed differential efficacy across the eight genetic variants (pIC50: 4.70 to 10.22). Pharmacophore analysis and quantitative structure-activity relationship (QSAR) studies revealed a urea-based N-acetyl aspartyl glutamate (NAAG) analogue as more potent inhibitor, which was effective across all the genetic variants of GCPII as evidenced by glide scores (-4.32 to -7.08) and protein-ligand interaction plots (13 interactions in wild GCPII). This molecule satisfied Lipinski rule of five and rule of three for drug-likeliness. Being a NAAG-analogue, this molecule might confer neuroprotection by inhibiting glutamatergic neurotransmission mediated by N-acetylated alpha-linked acidic dipeptidase (NAALADase), a splice variant of GCPII.

    1. Identifying potential clinical syndromes of hepatocellular carcinoma using PSO-based hierarchical feature selection algorithm.

      PubMed

      Ji, Zhiwei; Wang, Bing

      2014-01-01

      Hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) is one of the most common malignant tumors. Clinical symptoms attributable to HCC are usually absent, thus often miss the best therapeutic opportunities. Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) plays an active role in diagnosis and treatment of HCC. In this paper, we proposed a particle swarm optimization-based hierarchical feature selection (PSOHFS) model to infer potential syndromes for diagnosis of HCC. Firstly, the hierarchical feature representation is developed by a three-layer tree. The clinical symptoms and positive score of patient are leaf nodes and root in the tree, respectively, while each syndrome feature on the middle layer is extracted from a group of symptoms. Secondly, an improved PSO-based algorithm is applied in a new reduced feature space to search an optimal syndrome subset. Based on the result of feature selection, the causal relationships of symptoms and syndromes are inferred via Bayesian networks. In our experiment, 147 symptoms were aggregated into 27 groups and 27 syndrome features were extracted. The proposed approach discovered 24 syndromes which obviously improved the diagnosis accuracy. Finally, the Bayesian approach was applied to represent the causal relationships both at symptom and syndrome levels. The results show that our computational model can facilitate the clinical diagnosis of HCC.

    2. Cinderella's helping pigeons of the microbial world: The potential of testate amoebae for identifying cryptotephra.

      PubMed

      Delaine, Maxence; Fernández, Leonardo D; Armynot du Châtelet, Eric; Recourt, Philippe; Potdevin, Jean-Luc; Mitchell, Edward A D; Bernard, Nadine

      2016-09-01

      Cryptotephra (particles <125μm) is a key record for monitoring past and current volcanic activity. However, its extraction from the host sediment and analysis is often long and difficult because of its small size. Finding a simple method to extract cryptotephra from environmental samples would therefore make its analysis much easier. We hypothesized that arcellinid testate amoebae may hold such a potential. These free-living shelled protists are among the earliest microorganisms to colonize volcanic tephra, and build their shell by agglutinating minerals from their environment. We analyzed by X-ray Spectrometry the mineral signature of tephra from the 2011 Puyehue-Cordon Caulle Volcanic Complex (Chile) eruption ash fallout and compared it to that of the shells of 51 individual testate amoebae (three individuals from each of 17 species) from 13 samples collected at different distances from the active vent. The mineral composition of particles within shells closely matched that of similar size class particles from their environment. The capacity of testate amoebae to randomly use mineral grains from their environment makes it possible to use their shells to assess the mineral composition of cryptotephra from soil, peat or sediment samples. Testate amoebae therefore represent the microbial world's version of Cinderella's helping pigeons.

    3. The use of DRG for identifying clinical trials centers with high recruitment potential: a feasability study.

      PubMed

      Aegerter, Philippe; Bendersky, Noelle; Tran, Thi-Chien; Ropers, Jacques; Taright, Namik; Chatellier, Gilles

      2014-01-01

      Recruitment of large samples of patients is crucial for evidence level and efficacy of clinical trials (CT). Clinical Trial Recruitment Support Systems (CTRSS) used to estimate patient recruitment are generally specific to Hospital Information Systems and few were evaluated on a large number of trials. Our aim was to assess, on a large number of CT, the usefulness of commonly available data as Diagnosis Related Groups (DRG) databases in order to estimate potential recruitment. We used the DRG database of a large French multicenter medical institution (1.2 million inpatient stays and 400 new trials each year). Eligibility criteria of protocols were broken down into in atomic entities (diagnosis, procedures, treatments...) then translated into codes and operators recorded in a standardized form. A program parsed the forms and generated requests on the DRG database. A large majority of selection criteria could be coded and final estimations of number of eligible patients were close to observed ones (median difference = 25). Such a system could be part of the feasability evaluation and center selection process before the start of the clinical trial.

    4. Identifying the Potential for Robotics to Assist Older Adults in Different Living Environments

      PubMed Central

      Mitzner, Tracy L.; Chen, Tiffany L.; Kemp, Charles C.; Rogers, Wendy A.

      2014-01-01

      As the older adult population grows and becomes more diverse, so will their needs and preferences for living environments. Many adults over 65 years of age require some assistance [1, 2]; yet it is important for their feelings of well-being that the assistance not restrict their autonomy [3]. Not only is autonomy correlated with quality of life [4], autonomy enhancement may improve functionality [2, 5]. The goal of this paper is to provide guidance for the development of technology to enhance autonomy and quality of life for older adults. We explore the potential for robotics to meet these needs. We evaluated older adults' diverse living situations and the predictors of residential moves to higher levels of care in the United States. We also examined older adults' needs for assistance with activities of daily living (ADLs), instrumental activities of daily living (IADLs), and medical conditions when living independently or in a long-term care residence. By providing support for older adults, mobile manipulator robots may reduce need-driven, undesired moves from residences with lower levels of care (i.e., private homes, assisted living) to those with higher levels of care (i.e., skilled nursing). PMID:24729800

    5. Diversity and Biocatalytic Potential of Epoxide Hydrolases Identified by Genome Analysis†

      PubMed Central

      van Loo, Bert; Kingma, Jaap; Arand, Michael; Wubbolts, Marcel G.; Janssen, Dick B.

      2006-01-01

      Epoxide hydrolases play an important role in the biodegradation of organic compounds and are potentially useful in enantioselective biocatalysis. An analysis of various genomic databases revealed that about 20% of sequenced organisms contain one or more putative epoxide hydrolase genes. They were found in all domains of life, and many fungi and actinobacteria contain several putative epoxide hydrolase-encoding genes. Multiple sequence alignments of epoxide hydrolases with other known and putative α/β-hydrolase fold enzymes that possess a nucleophilic aspartate revealed that these enzymes can be classified into eight phylogenetic groups that all contain putative epoxide hydrolases. To determine their catalytic activities, 10 putative bacterial epoxide hydrolase genes and 2 known bacterial epoxide hydrolase genes were cloned and overexpressed in Escherichia coli. The production of active enzyme was strongly improved by fusion to the maltose binding protein (MalE), which prevented inclusion body formation and facilitated protein purification. Eight of the 12 fusion proteins were active toward one or more of the 21 epoxides that were tested, and they converted both terminal and nonterminal epoxides. Four of the new epoxide hydrolases showed an uncommon enantiopreference for meso-epoxides and/or terminal aromatic epoxides, which made them suitable for the production of enantiopure (S,S)-diols and (R)-epoxides. The results show that the expression of epoxide hydrolase genes that are detected by analyses of genomic databases is a useful strategy for obtaining new biocatalysts. PMID:16597997

    6. Development of a Novel Virtual Screening Cascade Protocol to Identify Potential Trypanothione Reductase Inhibitors

      PubMed Central

      2009-01-01

      The implementation of a novel sequential computational approach that can be used effectively for virtual screening and identification of prospective ligands that bind to trypanothione reductase (TryR) is reported. The multistep strategy combines a ligand-based virtual screening for building an enriched library of small molecules with a docking protocol (AutoDock, X-Score) for screening against the TryR target. Compounds were ranked by an exhaustive conformational consensus scoring approach that employs a rank-by-rank strategy by combining both scoring functions. Analysis of the predicted ligand−protein interactions highlights the role of bulky quaternary amine moieties for binding affinity. The scaffold hopping (SHOP) process derived from this computational approach allowed the identification of several chemotypes, not previously reported as antiprotozoal agents, which includes dibenzothiepine, dibenzooxathiepine, dibenzodithiepine, and polycyclic cationic structures like thiaazatetracyclo-nonadeca-hexaen-3-ium. Assays measuring the inhibiting effect of these compounds on T. cruzi and T. brucei TryR confirm their potential for further rational optimization. PMID:19296695

    7. A screen of the NIH Clinical Collection small molecule library identifies potential anti-coronavirus drugs.

      PubMed

      Cao, Jianzhong; Forrest, J Craig; Zhang, Xuming

      2015-02-01

      With the recent emergence of Middle East Respiratory Syndrome coronavirus in humans and the outbreak of devastating porcine epidemic diarrhea coronavirus in swine, therapeutic intervention is urgently needed. However, anti-coronavirus drugs currently are not available. In an effort to assist rapid development of anti-coronavirus drugs, here we screened the NIH Clinical Collection in cell culture using a luciferase reporter-expressing recombinant murine coronavirus. Of the 727 compounds screened, 84 were found to have a significant anti-coronavirus effect. Further experiments revealed that 51 compounds blocked virus entry while 19 others inhibited viral replication. Additional validation studies with the top 3 inhibitors (hexachlorophene, nitazoxanide and homoharringtonine) demonstrated robust anti-coronavirus activities (a reduction of 6 to 8log10 in virus titer) with an IC50 ranging from 11nM to 1.2μM. Furthermore, homoharringtonine and hexachlorophene exhibited broad antiviral activity against diverse species of human and animal coronaviruses. Since the NIH Clinical Collection consists of compounds that have already been through clinical trials, these small molecule inhibitors have a great potential for rapid development as anti-coronavirus drugs.

    8. Identifying solar energy potentials and intensifying the climate-friendly use of photovoltaics within urban areas.

      NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

      de Lange, N.

      2016-04-01

      Limited non-renewable fossil energy reserves and the essential ideas of sustainability have caused an increase in the demand for solar energy. The intensified use of renewable energy in Germany is primarily encouraged by the German renewable-energy-law. Solar panels mounted on roofs generate electricity using the energy radiated from the sun by taking advantage of the photovoltaic effect. However, not every roof is usable for power generation through solar energy. Therefore, web-based solar energy registers for multiple regions in Germany have been developed that provide detailed information on roofs suitable for carrying solar panels. The analyses are based on a digital object model derived from airborne laser scanning data of high accuracy and a fully automated technology to classify the points. First, roof points are separated according to their single roof sides and are converted into polygons. Then, exposure, slope, size of the roof, and particularly shading effects are computed to calculate the solar potential of each roof side. The web-GIS provides detailed information about the roof's suitability, such as the installable capacity and the expected generation of electricity. Thus, it helps house owners to calculate their investment and later revenues.

    9. CPTAC Investigators Identify Rogue Breast Tumor Proteins That Point To Potential Drug Therapies - Office of Cancer Clinical Proteomics Research

      Cancer.gov

      For patients with difficult-to-treat cancers, doctors increasingly rely on genomic testing of tumors to identify errors in the DNA that indicate a tumor can be targeted by existing therapies. But this approach overlooks rogue proteins that may be driving cancer cells and also could be targeted with existing treatments, according to research.

    10. Identifying patients with advanced chronic conditions for a progressive palliative care approach: a cross-sectional study of prognostic indicators related to end-of-life trajectories

      PubMed Central

      Amblàs-Novellas, J; Murray, S A; Espaulella, J; Martinez-Muñoz, M; Blay, C; Gómez-Batiste, X

      2016-01-01

      Objectives 2 innovative concepts have lately been developed to radically improve the care of patients with advanced chronic conditions (PACC): early identification of palliative care (PC) needs and the 3 end-of-life trajectories in chronic illnesses (acute, intermittent and gradual dwindling). It is not clear (1) what indicators work best for this early identification and (2) if specific clinical indicators exist for each of these trajectories. The objectives of this study are to explore these 2 issues. Setting 3 primary care services, an acute care hospital, an intermediate care centre and 4 nursing homes in a mixed urban–rural district in Barcelona, Spain. Participants 782 patients (61.5% women) with a positive NECPAL CCOMS-ICO test, indicating they might benefit from a PC approach. Outcome measures The characteristics and distribution of the indicators of the NECPAL CCOMS-ICO tool are analysed with respect to the 3 trajectories and have been arranged by domain (functional, nutritional and cognitive status, emotional problems, geriatric syndromes, social vulnerability and others) and according to their static (severity) and dynamic (progression) properties. Results The common indicators associated with early end-of-life identification are functional (44.3%) and nutritional (30.7%) progression, emotional distress (21.9%) and geriatric syndromes (15.7% delirium, 11.2% falls). The rest of the indicators showed differences in the associations per illness trajectories (p<0.05). 48.2% of the total cohort was identified as advanced frailty patients with no advanced disease criteria. Conclusions Dynamic indicators are present in the 3 trajectories and are especially useful to identify PACC for a progressive PC approach purpose. Most of the other indicators are typically associated with a specific trajectory. These findings can help clinicians improve the identification of patients for a palliative approach. PMID:27645556

    11. Drainage network extraction of Brazilian semiarid region with potential flood indication areas

      NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

      Rosim, Sergio; de Freitas Oliveira, João. Ricardo; de Oliveira Ortiz, Jussara; Cuellar, Miguel Zanic; Jardim, Alexandre Copertino

      2014-10-01

      This region has the particularity of, at the same time, coexisting with sporadic floods and scarcity of water. This situation requires complex studies involving water resources based on runoff of rain waters and on the courses of the rivers. For the extraction of drainage was carried out by using of the system for hydrological modeling treatment TerraHidro, developed by INPE's Image Processing Division. This system uses the PFS method for extraction of drainage, which has provided good results, enabling the reduction of the time spent on manual editing of drainage errors. TerraHidro has a tool called Height Above the Nearest Drainage (HAND) which gives information on potential flood areas. Elevation data were used in the Aster GDEM with spatial resolution of 30 meters for drainage extraction. A qualitative comparison was performed between drainage extracted by TerraHidro and drainage manually extracted by a specialist.

    12. Variations in Environmental Signals in Tree-Ring Indices in Trees with Different Growth Potential

      PubMed Central

      Hafner, Polona; Gričar, Jožica; Skudnik, Mitja; Levanič, Tom

      2015-01-01

      We analysed two groups of Quercus robur trees, growing at nearby plots with different micro-location condition (W-wet and D-dry) in the floodplain Krakovo forest, Slovenia. In the study we compared the growth response of two different tree groups to environmental variables, the potential signal stored in earlywood (EW) structure and the potential difference of the information stored in carbon isotope discrimination of EW and latewood (LW). For that purpose EW and LW widths and carbon isotope discrimination for the period 1970–2008 AD were measured. EW and LW widths were measured on stained microscopic slides and chronologies were standardised using the ARSTAN program. α-cellulose was extracted from pooled EW and LW samples and homogenized samples were further analysed using an elemental analyser and IRMS. We discovered that W oaks grew significantly better over the whole analysed period. The difference between D and W oaks was significant in all analysed variables with the exception of stable carbon isotope discrimination in latewood. In W oaks, latewood widths correlated with summer (June to August) climatic variables, while carbon isotope discrimination was more connected to River Krka flow during the summer. EW discrimination correlated with summer and autumn River Krka flow of the previous year, while latewood discrimination correlated with flow during the current year. In the case of D oaks, the environmental signal appears to be vague, probably due to less favourable growth conditions resulting in markedly reduced increments. Our study revealed important differences in responses to environmental factors between the two oak groups of different physiological conditions that are preconditioned by environmental stress. Environmental information stored in tree-ring features may vary, even within the same forest stand, and largely depends on the micro-environment. Our analysis confirmed our assumptions that separate EW and LW analysis of widths and carbon

    13. Spider Transcriptomes Identify Ancient Large-Scale Gene Duplication Event Potentially Important in Silk Gland Evolution.

      PubMed

      Clarke, Thomas H; Garb, Jessica E; Hayashi, Cheryl Y; Arensburger, Peter; Ayoub, Nadia A

      2015-06-08

      The evolution of specialized tissues with novel functions, such as the silk synthesizing glands in spiders, is likely an influential driver of adaptive success. Large-scale gene duplication events and subsequent paralog divergence are thought to be required for generating evolutionary novelty. Such an event has been proposed for spiders, but not tested. We de novo assembled transcriptomes from three cobweb weaving spider species. Based on phylogenetic analyses of gene families with representatives from each of the three species, we found numerous duplication events indicative of a whole genome or segmental duplication. We estimated the age of the gene duplications relative to several speciation events within spiders and arachnids and found that the duplications likely occurred after the divergence of scorpions (order Scorpionida) and spiders (order Araneae), but before the divergence of the spider suborders Mygalomorphae and Araneomorphae, near the evolutionary origin of spider silk glands. Transcripts that are expressed exclusively or primarily within black widow silk glands are more likely to have a paralog descended from the ancient duplication event and have elevated amino acid replacement rates compared with other transcripts. Thus, an ancient large-scale gene duplication event within the spider lineage was likely an important source of molecular novelty during the evolution of silk gland-specific expression. This duplication event may have provided genetic material for subsequent silk gland diversification in the true spiders (Araneomorphae).

    14. Identifying at-risk employees: A behavioral model for predicting potential insider threats

      SciTech Connect

      Greitzer, Frank L.; Kangas, Lars J.; Noonan, Christine F.; Dalton, Angela C.

      2010-09-01

      A psychosocial model was developed to assess an employee’s behavior associated with an increased risk of insider abuse. The model is based on case studies and research literature on factors/correlates associated with precursor behavioral manifestations of individuals committing insider crimes. In many of these crimes, managers and other coworkers observed that the offenders had exhibited signs of stress, disgruntlement, or other issues, but no alarms were raised. Barriers to using such psychosocial indicators include the inability to recognize the signs and the failure to record the behaviors so that they could be assessed by a person experienced in psychosocial evaluations. We have developed a model using a Bayesian belief network with the help of human resources staff, experienced in evaluating behaviors in staff. We conducted an experiment to assess its agreement with human resources and management professionals, with positive results. If implemented in an operational setting, the model would be part of a set of management tools for employee assessment that can raise an alarm about employees who pose higher insider threat risks. In separate work, we combine this psychosocial model’s assessment with computer workstation behavior to raise the efficacy of recognizing an insider crime in the making.

    15. Spider Transcriptomes Identify Ancient Large-Scale Gene Duplication Event Potentially Important in Silk Gland Evolution

      PubMed Central

      Clarke, Thomas H.; Garb, Jessica E.; Hayashi, Cheryl Y.; Arensburger, Peter; Ayoub, Nadia A.

      2015-01-01

      The evolution of specialized tissues with novel functions, such as the silk synthesizing glands in spiders, is likely an influential driver of adaptive success. Large-scale gene duplication events and subsequent paralog divergence are thought to be required for generating evolutionary novelty. Such an event has been proposed for spiders, but not tested. We de novo assembled transcriptomes from three cobweb weaving spider species. Based on phylogenetic analyses of gene families with representatives from each of the three species, we found numerous duplication events indicative of a whole genome or segmental duplication. We estimated the age of the gene duplications relative to several speciation events within spiders and arachnids and found that the duplications likely occurred after the divergence of scorpions (order Scorpionida) and spiders (order Araneae), but before the divergence of the spider suborders Mygalomorphae and Araneomorphae, near the evolutionary origin of spider silk glands. Transcripts that are expressed exclusively or primarily within black widow silk glands are more likely to have a paralog descended from the ancient duplication event and have elevated amino acid replacement rates compared with other transcripts. Thus, an ancient large-scale gene duplication event within the spider lineage was likely an important source of molecular novelty during the evolution of silk gland-specific expression. This duplication event may have provided genetic material for subsequent silk gland diversification in the true spiders (Araneomorphae). PMID:26058392

    16. Altered Transmission of HOX and Apoptotic SNPs Identify a Potential Common Pathway for Clubfoot

      PubMed Central

      Ester, Audrey R.; Weymouth, Katelyn S.; Burt, Amber; Wise, Carol; Scott, Allison; Gurnett, Christina A; Dobbs, Matthew B.; Blanton, Susan H.; Hecht, Jacqueline T.

      2009-01-01

      Clubfoot is a common birth defect that affects 135,000 newborns each year worldwide. It is characterized by equinus deformity of one or both feet and hypoplastic calf muscles. Despite numerous study approaches, the cause(s) remains poorly understood although a multifactorial etiology is generally accepted. We considered the HOXA and HOXD gene clusters and insulin-like growth factor binding protein 3 (IGFBP3) as candidate genes because of their important roles in limb and muscle morphogenesis. Twenty SNPs from the HOXA and HOXD gene clusters and 12 SNPs in IGFBP3 were genotyped in a sample composed of nonHispanic white and Hispanic multiplex and simplex families (discovery samples) and a second sample of nonHispanic white simplex trios (validation sample). Four SNPs (rs6668, rs2428431, rs3801776 and rs3779456) in the HOXA cluster demonstrated altered transmission in the discovery sample, but only rs3801776, located in the HOXA basal promoter region, showed altered transmission in both the discovery and validation samples (p=0.004 and p=0.028). Interestingly, HOXA9 is expressed in muscle during development. A SNP in IGFBP3, rs13223993, also showed altered transmission (p=0.003) in the discovery sample. Gene-gene interactions were identified between variants in HOXA, HOXD and IGFBP3 and with previously associated SNPs in mitochondrial-mediated apoptotic genes. The most significant interactions were found between CASP3 SNPS and variants in HOXA, HOXD and IGFBP3. These results suggest a biologic model for clubfoot in which perturbation of HOX and apoptotic genes together affect muscle and limb development, which may cause the downstream failure of limb rotation into a plantar grade position. PMID:19938081

    17. Assessing the potential of candidate DNA barcodes for identifying non-flowering seed plants.

      PubMed

      Pang, X; Luo, H; Sun, C

      2012-09-01

      In plants, matK and rbcL have been selected as core barcodes by the Consortium for the Barcode of Life (CBOL) Plant Working Group (PWG), and ITS/ITS2 and psbA-trnH were suggested as supplementary loci. Yet, research on DNA barcoding of non-flowering seed plants has been less extensive, and the evaluation of DNA barcodes in this division has been limited thus far. Here, we evaluated seven markers (psbA-trnH, matK, rbcL, rpoB, rpoC1, ITS and ITS2) from non-flowering seed plants. The usefulness of each region was assessed using four criteria: the success rate of PCR amplification, the differential intra- and inter-specific divergences, the DNA barcoding gap and the ability to discriminate species. Among the seven loci tested, ITS2 produced the best results in the barcoding of non-flowering seed plants. In addition, we compared the abilities of the five most-recommended markers (psbA-trnH, matK, rbcL, ITS and ITS2) to identify additional species using a large database of gymnosperms from GenBank. ITS2 remained effective for species identification in a wide range of non-flowering seed plants: for the 1531 samples from 608 species of 80 diverse genera, ITS2 correctly authenticated 66% of them at the species level. In conclusion, the ITS2 region can serve as a useful barcode to discriminate non-flowering seed plants, and this study will contribute valuable information for the barcoding of plant species.

    18. The Genus Neoceratium (Planktonic Dinoflagellates) as a Potential Indicator of Ocean Warming.

      PubMed

      Tunin-Ley, Alina; Lemée, Rodolphe

      2013-10-25

      Among the planktonic dinoflagellates, the species-rich genus Neoceratium has particularly remarkable features that include its easily recognizable outline and large size. This ubiquitous genus shows consistent presence in all plankton samples and has been a model for numerous studies since the end of the 19th century. It has already been described as a good candidate to monitor water masses and describe ocean circulation. We argue that the sensitivity displayed by Neoceratium to water temperature also makes it relevant as an indicator of ocean warming. The advantages and interests of using Neoceratium species to monitor climate change on a large scale are reassessed in view of recent advances in understanding their biology and ecology.

    19. Studies on cosmogenic nuclides in meteorites with regard to an application as potential depth indicators

      NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

      Sarafin, R.; Herpers, U.; Englert, P.; Wieler, R.; Signer, P.; Bonani, G.; Hofmann, H. J.; Morenzoni, E.; Nessi, M.; Suter, M.

      1986-01-01

      Measurements of stable and radioactive spallation products in meteorites allow to investigate their histories, especially with respect to the exposure to galactic cosmic ray particles and the pre-atmospheric size of the object. While the concentrations of spallation products lead to the determination of exposure and terrestrial ages, production rate ratios are characteristic for the location of the sample in the meteorite. So, one of the aims of this investigation on meteorites is to obtain depth indicators from suitable pairs of cosmogenic nuclides. Because of the different depth profiles for nuclide productions it is necessary to determine the concentrations of a larger number of spallation products in aliquots of a single small sample. Such same sample measurements of Be-10 and light noble gases were performed on 15 ordinary chondrites (7 H- and 8 L-chondrites. Be-10 was determined by accelerator mass spectrometry and the noble gases were measured by static mass spectrometry. The results are summarized and discussed.

    20. Value of the CT "capsular sign" as a potential indicator of acute adrenal ischemia.

      PubMed

      Moschetta, Marco; Telegrafo, Michele; Pignatelli, Armando; Stabile Ianora, Amato Antonio; Angelelli, Giuseppe

      2015-10-01

      Acute adrenal ischemia represents a rare cause of adrenal insufficiency which should be promptly diagnosed in order to preserve adrenal vitality and function. Our study aims to retrospectively evaluate the diagnostic accuracy of the CT capsular sign as an indicator of adrenal ischemia and its association with vascular involvement. Between January 2013 and January 2014, 69 consecutive patients (47 men, 22 women; mean age 46; range 22-67) with suspected adrenal insufficiency based on clinical and biochemical data underwent 320-row CT examination in our Emergency Department. Written informed consent was obtained for the CT examinations, and the institutional review board approval was obtained for our retrospective study. CT multi-planar images were retrospectively and independently analyzed by two radiologists searching for the patency of adrenal vessels, enlarged adrenals, the presence of the "capsular sign" represented by a peripheral subtle hyperdense line around a hypodense enlarged adrenal, and the presence of any periadrenal inflammatory changes. All CT findings were then compared with the surgical findings (n = 5), follow-up examinations (n = 20), or autopsy (n = 4). Sensitivity, specificity, diagnostic accuracy (DA), positive predictive value (PPV), and negative predictive value (NPV) were calculated for the "capsular sign" and were further evaluated by ROC analysis. Acute adrenal ischemia occurred in 29/69 patients (42 %), unilateral in 20, and bilateral in 9. Forty of sixty-nine patients (58 %) had no evidence of adrenal disease on CT. Thrombosis of the main adrenal vein was found in 20/29 (69 %) and non-venous ischemia in 9/29 (31 %). The capsular sign was found in 24/29 patients (83 %). Sensitivity, specificity, DA, PPV, and NPV values of 83, 100, 93, 100, and 89 %, respectively, were obtained. The capsular sign represents a CT indicator of acute adrenal ischemia, with a specificity of 100 % and leading to a prompt diagnosis in the early

    1. Using indicator kriging for the evaluation of arsenic potential contamination in an abandoned mining area (Portugal).

      PubMed

      Antunes, I M H R; Albuquerque, M T D

      2013-01-01

      Mining and mineral-processing activities can modify the environment in a variety of ways. Sulfide mineralization is notorious for producing waters with high metal contents. Arsenic is commonly associated with sulfide mineralization and is considered to be toxic in the environment at low levels. The studied abandoned mining area is located in central Portugal and the resulting tailings and rejected materials were deposited and exposed to the air and water for the last 50 years. Sixteen water sample-points were collected. One of these was collected outside the mining influence, with the aim of obtaining a reference background. The risk assessment, concerning the proximity to abandoned mineralized deposits, needs the evaluation of intrinsic and specific vulnerabilities aiming the quantification of the anthropogenic activities. In this study, two indicator variables were constructed. The first one (I(1)), a specific vulnerability, considers the arsenic water supply standard value (0.05 mg/L), and the probability of it being exceeded is dependent on the geologic and hydrological characteristics of the studied area and also on the anthropogenic activities. The second one (I(2)), an intrinsic vulnerability, considers arsenic background limit as cut-off value, and depends only on the geologic and hydro-geological characteristics of the studied area. At Segura, the arsenic water content found during December 2006 (1.190 mg/L) was higher than the arsenic water content detected in October 2006 (0.636 mg/L) which could be associated to the arsenic released from Fe oxy-hydroxide. At Segura abandoned mining area, the iso-probability maps of October 2006 and December 2006, show strong anomalies associated with the water drainage from abandoned mining activities. Near the village, the probability of exceeding the arsenic background value is high but lower than the probability of exceeding the arsenic water supply value. The arsenic anomalies indicate a high probability for water

    2. Martian impact crater ejecta morphologies and their potential as indicators of subsurface volatile distribution

      NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

      Barlow, Nadine G.

      1991-01-01

      Many martian impact craters ejecta morphologies suggestive of fluidization during ejecta emplacement. Impact into subsurface volatile reserviors (i.e., water, ice, CO2, etc.) is the mechanism favored by many scientists, although acceptance of this mechanism is not unanimous. In recent years, a number of studies were undertaken to better understand possible relationships between ejecta morphology and latitude, longitude, crater diameter, and terrain. These results suggest that subsurface volatiles do influence the formation of specific ejecta morphologies and may provide clues to the vertical and horizontal distribution of volatiles in more localized regions of Mars. The location of these volatile reservoirs will be important to humans exploring and settling Mars in the future. Qualitative descriptions of ejecta morphology and quantitative analyses of ejecta sinuosity and ejecta lobe areal extent from the basis of the studies. Ejecta morphology studies indicate that morphology is correlated with crater diameter and latitude, and, using depth-diameter relationships, these correlations strongly suggest that changes in morphology are related to transition among subsurface layers with varying amounts of volatiles. Ejecta sinuosity studies reveal correlations between degree of sinuosity (lobateness) and crater morphology, diameter, latitude, and terrain. Lobateness, together with variations in areal extent of the lobate ejecta blanket with morphology and latitude, probably depends most directly on the ejecta emplacement process. The physical parameters measured here can be compared with those predicted by existing ejecta emplacement models. Some of these parameters are best reproduced by models requiring incorporation of volatiles within the ejecta. However, inconsistencies between other parameters and the models indicate that more detailed modeling is necessary before the location of volatile reservoirs can be confidently predicted based on ejecta morphology studies

    3. A novel peptide mimotope identified as a potential immunosuppressive vaccine for organ transplantation.

      PubMed

      Chiang, Kuei-Chen; Shimada, Yayoi; Nakano, Toshiaki; Lai, Chia-Yun; Hsu, Li-Wen; Goto, Shigeru; Ohmori, Naoya; Mori, Kenji; Miyagi, Takamitsu; Kawamoto, Seiji; Ono, Kazuhisa; Chen, Chao-Long; Goto, Takeshi; Sato, Shuji

      2009-04-01

      We reported that anti-histone H1 autoantibody is one of the main immunosuppressive factors in serum that is induced after orthotopic liver transplantation in a rat tolerogenic model. We generated a novel anti-histone H1 IgM mAb produced by hybridoma 16G9 (16G9 mAb) that shows MLR-inhibitory activity. Identification of a functional epitope responsible for the immunosuppressive activity of 16G9 mAb may lead to the establishment of a novel therapeutic strategy. We used a combinatorial phage display peptide library to screen for peptides that bind to 16G9 mAb. Consequently, two peptides that bind to 16G9 mAb, SSV and LPQ, were selected from the library. The binding of 16G9 mAb to histone H1 was inhibited by SSV. SSV was recognized by rat tolerogenic post-orthotopic liver transplantation serum and the binding to SSV was inhibited by histone H1. Mice were immunized with keyhole limpet hemocyanin-conjugated SSV and LPQ. Abs induced by SSV immunization inhibited Con A-stimulated splenocyte proliferation, and the inhibition was neutralized by preincubation with SSV. Splenocytes stimulated by anti-CD3 Ab were inhibited by SSV-induced Abs using CFSE labeling. SSV immunization in rats before heterotopic heart transplantation resulted in significant prolonged allograft survival. These findings suggested that SSV is a functional histone H1-binding epitope for 16G9 mAb. SSV is capable of determining serum immunoreactivity against histone H1 as an index marker for tolerance. The inhibitory activity of SSV-induced Abs on blast cell proliferation and the prolonged graft survival that results from SSV immunization imply a potential for the development of an immunosuppressive vaccine.

    4. Declines in Crime and Teen Childbearing: Identifying Potential Explanations for Contemporaneous Trends

      PubMed Central

      Colen, Cynthia G.; Ramey, David M.; Browning, Christopher R.

      2016-01-01

      Objectives The previous 25 years have witnessed remarkable upheavals in the social landscape of the United States. Two of the most notable trends have been dramatic declines in levels of crime as well as teen childbearing. Much remains unknown about the underlying conditions that might be driving these changes. More importantly, we do not know if the same distal factors that are responsible for the drop in the crime rate are similarly implicated in falling rates of teen births. We examine four overarching potential explanations: fluctuations in economic opportunity, shifting population demographics, differences in state-level policies, and changes in expectations regarding health and mortality. Methods We combine state-specific data from existing secondary sources and model trajectories of violent crime, homicides, robberies, and teen fertility over a 20-year period from 1990 to 2010 using simultaneous fixed-effects regression models. Results We find that 4 of the 21 predictors examined - growth in the service sector of the labor market, increasing racial diversity especially among Hispanics, escalating levels of migration, and the expansion of family planning services to low-income women – offer the most convincing explanations for why rates of violent crime and teen births have been steadily decreasing over time. Moreover, we are able to account for almost a quarter of the joint declines in violent crime and teen births. Conclusions Our conclusions underscore the far reaching effects that aggregate level demographic conditions and policies are likely to have on important social trends that might, at first glance, seem unrelated. Furthermore, the effects of policy efforts designed to target outcomes in one area are likely to spill over into other domains. PMID:27695160

    5. COSMO-SkyMed potentiality to identify crop-specific behavior and monitor phenological parameters

      NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

      Guarini, Rocchina; Segalini, Federica; Mastronardi, Giovanni; Notarnicola, Claudia; Vuolo, Francesco; Dini, Luigi

      2014-10-01

      This work aims at investigating the capability of COSMO-SkyMed® (CSK®) constellation of Synthetic Aperture Radar (SAR) system to monitor the Leaf Area Index (LAI) of different crops. The experiment was conducted in the Marchfeld Region, an agricultural Austrian area, and focused on five crop species: sugar beet, soybean, potato, pea and corn. A linear regression analysis was carried out to assess the sensitivity of CSK® backscattering coefficients to crops changes base on LAI values. CSK® backscattering coefficients were averaged at a field scale (<σ°dB>) and were compared to the DEIMOS-1 derived values of estimated LAI. LAI were as well averaged over the corresponding fields (). CSK® data acquired at three polarizations (HH, VV and VH), four incidence angles (23°, 33°, 40° and 57°) and at different pixel spacings (2.5 m and 10 m) were tested to assess whether spatial resolution may influence results at a field scale and to find the best combination of polarizations and CSK® acquisition beams which indicate the highest sensitivity to crop LAI values. The preliminary results show that sugar beet can be well monitored (r = 0.72 - 0.80) by CSK® by using any of the polarization acquisition modes, at moderate to shallow incidence angles (33° - 57°). Slightly weaker correlations were found, at VH polarization only, between CSK® < σ°dB> and for potato (r = 0.65), pea (r = 0.65) and soybean (r = -0.83). Shallower view incidence angles seem to be preferable to steep ones in most cases. CSK® backscattering coefficients were no sensitive at all to LAI changes for already developed corn fields.

    6. A Pilot Genome-Wide Association Study Identifies Potential Metabolic Pathways Involved in Tinnitus

      PubMed Central

      Gilles, Annick; Van Camp, Guy; Van de Heyning, Paul; Fransen, Erik

      2017-01-01

      Tinnitus, the perception of an auditory phantom sound in the form of ringing, buzzing, roaring, or hissing in the absence of an external sound source, is perceived by ~15% of the population and 2.5% experiences a severely bothersome tinnitus. The contribution of genes on the development of tinnitus is still under debate. The current manuscript reports a pilot Genome Wide Association Study (GWAS) into tinnitus, in a small cohort of 167 independent tinnitus subjects, and 749 non-tinnitus controls, who were collected as part of a cross-sectional study. After genotyping, imputation, and quality checking, the association between the tinnitus phenotype and 4,000,000 single-nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) was tested followed by gene set enrichment analysis. None of the SNPs reached the threshold for genome-wide significance (p < 5.0e–8), with the most significant SNPs, situated outside coding genes, reaching a p-value of 3.4e–7. By using the Genetic Analysis of Complex Traits (GACT) software, the percentage of the variance explained by all SNPs in the GWAS was estimated to be 3.2%, indicating that additive genetic effects explain only a small fraction of the tinnitus phenotype. Despite the lack of genome-wide significant SNPs, which is, at least in part, due to the limited sample size of the current study, evidence was found for a genetic involvement in tinnitus. Gene set enrichment analysis showed several metabolic pathways to be significantly enriched with SNPs having a low p-value in the GWAS. These pathways are involved in oxidative stress, endoplasmatic reticulum (ER) stress, and serotonin reception mediated signaling. These results are a promising basis for further research into the genetic basis of tinnitus, including GWAS with larger sample sizes and considering tinnitus subtypes for which a greater genetic contribution is more likely. PMID:28303087

    7. A Complementary Bioinformatics Approach to Identify Potential Plant Cell Wall Glycosyltransferase-Encoding Genes1[w

      PubMed Central

      Egelund, Jack; Skjøt, Michael; Geshi, Naomi; Ulvskov, Peter; Petersen, Bent Larsen

      2004-01-01

      Plant cell wall (CW) synthesizing enzymes can be divided into the glycan (i.e. cellulose and callose) synthases, which are multimembrane spanning proteins located at the plasma membrane, and the glycosyltransferases (GTs), which are Golgi localized single membrane spanning proteins, believed to participate in the synthesis of hemicellulose, pectin, mannans, and various glycoproteins. At the Carbohydrate-Active enZYmes (CAZy) database where e.g. glucoside hydrolases and GTs are classified into gene families primarily based on amino acid sequence similarities, 415 Arabidopsis GTs have been classified. Although much is known with regard to composition and fine structures of the plant CW, only a handful of CW biosynthetic GT genes—all classified in the CAZy system—have been characterized. In an effort to identify CW GTs that have not yet been classified in the CAZy database, a simple bioinformatics approach was adopted. First, the entire Arabidopsis proteome was run through the Transmembrane Hidden Markov Model 2.0 server and proteins containing one or, more rarely, two transmembrane domains within the N-terminal 150 amino acids were collected. Second, these sequences were submitted to the SUPERFAMILY prediction server, and sequences that were predicted to belong to the superfamilies NDP-sugartransferase, UDP-glycosyltransferase/glucogen-phosphorylase, carbohydrate-binding domain, Gal-binding domain, or Rossman fold were collected, yielding a total of 191 sequences. Fifty-two accessions already classified in CAZy were discarded. The resulting 139 sequences were then analyzed using the Three-Dimensional-Position-Specific Scoring Matrix and mGenTHREADER servers, and 27 sequences with similarity to either the GT-A or the GT-B fold were obtained. Proof of concept of the present approach has to some extent been provided by our recent demonstration that two members of this pool of 27 non-CAZy-classified putative GTs are xylosyltransferases involved in synthesis of pectin

    8. “What is this?” Gesture as a potential cue to identify referents in discourse

      PubMed Central

      So, Wing Chee; Lim, Jia Yi

      2010-01-01

      This study explores whether caregivers follow the discourse-pragmatic principle of information status of referents (given vs. new) in their gestures and how children respond to their caregivers’ gestures. Chinese and American caregivers were videotaped while interacting spontaneously with their children. Their speech and gestures were coded for referential expressions. Even though Chinese caregivers gestured more often than American caregivers, we found that both groups produced more gestures when asking their children to identify new referents than when asking their children to identify given referents. In addition, both groups of children were sensitive to the gestures accompanying new referents and using these gestures to identify the referents. Thus, we conclude that gesture serves as a potential cue for both caregivers and children to identify referents according to the discourse-pragmatic principle of information status. PMID:22505785

    9. Stimulators and Activators of Soluble Guanylate Cyclase: Review and Potential Therapeutic Indications

      PubMed Central

      Nossaman, Bobby; Pankey, Edward; Kadowitz, Philip

      2012-01-01

      The heme-protein soluble guanylyl cyclase (sGC) is the intracellular receptor for nitric oxide (NO). sGC is a heterodimeric enzyme with α and β subunits and contains a heme moiety essential for binding of NO and activation of the enzyme. Stimulation of sGC mediates physiologic responses including smooth muscle relaxation, inhibition of inflammation, and thrombosis. In pathophysiologic states, NO formation and bioavailability can be impaired by oxidative stress and that tolerance to NO donors develops with continuous use. Two classes of compounds have been developed that can directly activate sGC and increase cGMP formation in pathophysiologic conditions when NO formation and bioavailability are impaired or when NO tolerance has developed. In this report, we review current information on the pharmacology of heme-dependent stimulators and heme-independent activators of sGC in animal and in early clinical studies and the potential role these compounds may have in the management of cardiovascular disease. PMID:22482042

    10. Clinical evoked potentials in neurology: a review of techniques and indications.

      PubMed

      Lascano, Agustina M; Lalive, Patrice H; Hardmeier, Martin; Fuhr, Peter; Seeck, Margitta

      2017-02-24

      Evoked potentials (EPs) are a powerful and cost-effective tool for evaluating the integrity and function of the central nervous system. Although imaging techniques, such as MRI, have recently become increasingly important in the diagnosis of neurological diseases, over the past 30 years, many neurologists have continued to employ EPs in specific clinical applications. This review presents an overview of the recent evolution of 'classical' clinical applications of EPs in terms of early diagnosis and disease monitoring and is an extension of a previous review published in this journal in 2005 by Walsh and collaborators. We also provide an update on emerging EPs based on gustatory, olfactory and pain stimulation that may be used as clinically relevant markers of neurodegenerative disorders such as Parkinson's disease, Alzheimer's disease and cortical or peripheral impaired pain perception. EPs based on multichannel electroencephalography recordings, known as high-density EPs, help to better differentiate between healthy subjects and patients and, moreover, they provide valuable spatial information regarding the site of the lesion. EPs are reliable disease-progression biomarkers of several neurological diseases, such as multiple sclerosis and other demyelinating disorders. Overall, EPs are excellent neurophysiological tools that will expand standard clinical practice in modern neurology.

    11. Beta/Gamma Oscillations and Event-Related Potentials Indicate Aberrant Multisensory Processing in Schizophrenia

      PubMed Central

      Balz, Johanna; Roa Romero, Yadira; Keil, Julian; Krebber, Martin; Niedeggen, Michael; Gallinat, Jürgen; Senkowski, Daniel

      2016-01-01

      Recent behavioral and neuroimaging studies have suggested multisensory processing deficits in patients with schizophrenia (SCZ). Thus far, the neural mechanisms underlying these deficits are not well understood. Previous studies with unisensory stimulation have shown altered neural oscillations in SCZ. As such, altered oscillations could contribute to aberrant multisensory processing in this patient group. To test this assumption, we conducted an electroencephalography (EEG) study in 15 SCZ and 15 control participants in whom we examined neural oscillations and event-related potentials (ERPs) in the sound-induced flash illusion (SIFI). In the SIFI multiple auditory stimuli that are presented alongside a single visual stimulus can induce the illusory percept of multiple visual stimuli. In SCZ and control participants we compared ERPs and neural oscillations between trials that induced an illusion and trials that did not induce an illusion. On the behavioral level, SCZ (55.7%) and control participants (55.4%) did not significantly differ in illusion rates. The analysis of ERPs revealed diminished amplitudes and altered multisensory processing in SCZ compared to controls around 135 ms after stimulus onset. Moreover, the analysis of neural oscillations revealed altered 25–35 Hz power after 100 to 150 ms over occipital scalp for SCZ compared to controls. Our findings extend previous observations of aberrant neural oscillations in unisensory perception paradigms. They suggest that altered ERPs and altered occipital beta/gamma band power reflect aberrant multisensory processing in SCZ. PMID:27999553

    12. Pharmacokinetics of the Antiviral Lectin Griffithsin Administered by Different Routes Indicates Multiple Potential Uses

      PubMed Central

      Barton, Christopher; Kouokam, J. Calvin; Hurst, Harrell; Palmer, Kenneth E.

      2016-01-01

      Griffithsin (GRFT) is a red alga-derived lectin with demonstrated broad spectrum antiviral activity against enveloped viruses, including severe acute respiratory syndrome–Coronavirus (SARS-CoV), Japanese encephalitis virus (JEV), hepatitis C virus (HCV), and herpes simplex virus-2 (HSV-2). However, its pharmacokinetic profile remains largely undefined. Here, Sprague Dawley rats were administered a single dose of GRFT at 10 or 20 mg/kg by intravenous, oral, and subcutaneous routes, respectively, and serum GRFT levels were measured at select time points. In addition, the potential for systemic accumulation after oral dosing was assessed in rats after 10 daily treatments with GRFT (20 or 40 mg/kg). We found that parenterally-administered GRFT in rats displayed a complex elimination profile, which varied according to administration routes. However, GRFT was not orally bioavailable, even after chronic treatment. Nonetheless, active GRFT capable of neutralizing HIV-Env pseudoviruses was detected in rat fecal extracts after chronic oral dosing. These findings support further evaluation of GRFT for pre-exposure prophylaxis against emerging epidemics for which specific therapeutics are not available, including systemic and enteric infections caused by susceptible enveloped viruses. In addition, GRFT should be considered for antiviral therapy and the prevention of rectal transmission of HIV-1 and other susceptible viruses. PMID:27999325

    13. Beta/Gamma Oscillations and Event-Related Potentials Indicate Aberrant Multisensory Processing in Schizophrenia.

      PubMed

      Balz, Johanna; Roa Romero, Yadira; Keil, Julian; Krebber, Martin; Niedeggen, Michael; Gallinat, Jürgen; Senkowski, Daniel

      2016-01-01

      Recent behavioral and neuroimaging studies have suggested multisensory processing deficits in patients with schizophrenia (SCZ). Thus far, the neural mechanisms underlying these deficits are not well understood. Previous studies with unisensory stimulation have shown altered neural oscillations in SCZ. As such, altered oscillations could contribute to aberrant multisensory processing in this patient group. To test this assumption, we conducted an electroencephalography (EEG) study in 15 SCZ and 15 control participants in whom we examined neural oscillations and event-related potentials (ERPs) in the sound-induced flash illusion (SIFI). In the SIFI multiple auditory stimuli that are presented alongside a single visual stimulus can induce the illusory percept of multiple visual stimuli. In SCZ and control participants we compared ERPs and neural oscillations between trials that induced an illusion and trials that did not induce an illusion. On the behavioral level, SCZ (55.7%) and control participants (55.4%) did not significantly differ in illusion rates. The analysis of ERPs revealed diminished amplitudes and altered multisensory processing in SCZ compared to controls around 135 ms after stimulus onset. Moreover, the analysis of neural oscillations revealed altered 25-35 Hz power after 100 to 150 ms over occipital scalp for SCZ compared to controls. Our findings extend previous observations of aberrant neural oscillations in unisensory perception paradigms. They suggest that altered ERPs and altered occipital beta/gamma band power reflect aberrant multisensory processing in SCZ.

    14. Foliar phenolics in sugar maple (Acer saccharum) as a potential indicator of tropospheric ozone pollution.

      PubMed

      Sager, E P S; Hutchinson, T C; Croley, T R

      2005-06-01

      Tropospheric O3 has been implicated in the declining health of forest ecosystems in Europe and North America and has been shown to have negative consequences on human health. We have measured tropospheric ozone (O3) in the lower canopy through the use of passive monitors located in five woodlots along a 150 km urban-rural transect, originating in the large urban complex of Toronto, Canada. We also sampled foliage from 10 mature sugar maple trees in each woodlot and measured the concentration of a number of phenolic compounds and macronutrients. O3 concentrations were highest in the two rural woodlots, located approximately 150 km downwind of Toronto, when compared to the woodlots found within the Greater Toronto Area. Foliar concentrations of three flavonoids, avicularin, isoquercitrin, and quercitrin, were significantly greater and nitrogen concentrations significantly lower at these same rural woodlots, suggesting some physiological disruption is occurring in those sites where exposure to tropospheric O3 is greater. We suggest that foliar phenolics of sugar maple may be a biochemical indicator of tropospheric ozone exposure.

    15. Complex forest dynamics indicate potential for slowing carbon accumulation in the southeastern United States

      PubMed Central

      Coulston, John W.; Wear, David N.; Vose, James M.

      2015-01-01

      Over the past century forest regrowth in Europe and North America expanded forest carbon (C) sinks and offset C emissions but future C accumulation is uncertain. Policy makers need insights into forest C dynamics as they anticipate emissions futures and goals. We used land use and forest inventory data to estimate how forest C dynamics have changed in the southeastern United States and attribute changes to land use, management, and disturbance causes. From 2007-2012, forests yielded a net sink of C because of net land use change (+6.48 Tg C yr−1) and net biomass accumulation (+75.4 Tg C yr−1). Forests disturbed by weather, insect/disease, and fire show dampened yet positive forest C changes (+1.56, +1.4, +5.48 Tg C yr−1, respectively). Forest cutting caused net decreases in C (−76.7 Tg C yr−1) but was offset by forest growth (+143.77 Tg C yr−1). Forest growth rates depend on age or stage of development and projected C stock changes indicate a gradual slowing of carbon accumulation with anticipated forest aging (a reduction of 9.5% over the next five years). Additionally, small shifts in land use transitions consistent with economic futures resulted in a 40.6% decrease in C accumulation. PMID:25614123

    16. Complex forest dynamics indicate potential for slowing carbon accumulation in the southeastern United States

      NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

      Coulston, John W.; Wear, David N.; Vose, James M.

      2015-01-01

      Over the past century forest regrowth in Europe and North America expanded forest carbon (C) sinks and offset C emissions but future C accumulation is uncertain. Policy makers need insights into forest C dynamics as they anticipate emissions futures and goals. We used land use and forest inventory data to estimate how forest C dynamics have changed in the southeastern United States and attribute changes to land use, management, and disturbance causes. From 2007-2012, forests yielded a net sink of C because of net land use change (+6.48 Tg C yr-1) and net biomass accumulation (+75.4 Tg C yr-1). Forests disturbed by weather, insect/disease, and fire show dampened yet positive forest C changes (+1.56, +1.4, +5.48 Tg C yr-1, respectively). Forest cutting caused net decreases in C (-76.7 Tg C yr-1) but was offset by forest growth (+143.77 Tg C yr-1). Forest growth rates depend on age or stage of development and projected C stock changes indicate a gradual slowing of carbon accumulation with anticipated forest aging (a reduction of 9.5% over the next five years). Additionally, small shifts in land use transitions consistent with economic futures resulted in a 40.6% decrease in C accumulation.

    17. Parasites of the grouper fish Epinephelus coioides (Serranidae) as potential environmental indicators in Indonesian coastal ecosystems.

      PubMed

      Kleinertz, S; Palm, H W

      2015-01-01

      A total of 195 Epinephelus coioides (Hamilton, 1822) were studied for fish parasites from Javanese (Segara Anakan lagoon) and Balinese waters. Up to 25 different parasite species belonging to the following taxa: one Ciliata, one Microsporea, five Digenea, one Monogenea, four Cestoda, four Nematoda, one Acanthocephala, one Hirudinea and seven Crustacea were identified with four new host and locality records. The dominant parasites included the monogenean Pseudorhabdosynochus lantauensis (53.3-97.1%), the nematode Spirophilometra endangae (23.3-42.9%), the digenean Didymodiclinus sp. (2.9-40.0%), the nematodes Philometra sp. (22.6-34.3%) and Raphidascaris sp. (2.9-28.6%), and the isopod Alcirona sp. (6.7-31.4%). Regional differences for E. coioides were found in terms of endoparasite diversity, total diversity according to Shannon-Wiener, Simpson index and Evenness. A comparison with published data from Sumatera revealed highest endoparasite diversity (Shannon-Wiener: 1.86/1.67-2.04) and lowest ectoparasite/endoparasite ratio (0.73/0.57-0.88) off the Balinese coast, followed by Lampung Bay, Sumatera (1.84; 0.67), off the coast of Segara Anakan lagoon (1.71; 0.71), and in the lagoon (0.30/0.19-0.66; 0.85/0.67-1.00). The presented data demonstrate the natural range of these parameters and parasite prevalences according to habitat and region, allowing adjustment of the scale that has been used in the visual integration of the parasite parameters into a star graph. The parasite fauna of E. coioides in Segara Anakan lagoon 'improved' from 2004 until 2008/09, possibly related to earlier oil spill events in 2002 and 2004. The use of grouper fish parasites as an early warning system for environmental change in Indonesian coastal ecosystems is discussed.

    18. Clinical applications of palifermin: amelioration of oral mucositis and other potential indications

      PubMed Central

      Vadhan-Raj, Saroj; Goldberg, Jenna D; Perales, Miguel-Angel; Berger, Dietmar P; Brink, Marcel RM

      2013-01-01

      Mucositis is one of the most significant toxicities in cancer patients undergoing cytotoxic treatment. It can have a negative impact on both quality of life and health economics. Severe oral mucositis can contribute to hospitalization, need for narcotic analgesics, total parentral nutrition, suboptimal delivery of anti-neoplastic treatment, and morbidity and mortality. Palifermin, a recombinant derivative of human keratinocyte growth factor, is the first active agent approved by the FDA for the prevention of severe oral mucositis in patients undergoing haematopoietic stem cell transplantation (HSCT). Several studies have also shown significant reduction in the incidence, severity and/or duration of oral mucositis in other high-risk settings such as concurrent chemoradiotherapy (CT/RT) for patients with head and neck cancer, and use of mucotoxic chemotherapeutic agents such as doxorubicin in sarcoma and fluorouracil for the treatment of colorectal cancer. The reduction in mucositis has translated into amelioration of symptoms and improvement in daily functioning as measured by patient-reported outcome in multiple studies. The clinical response to palifermin appears to be related in part to epithelial proliferation and mucosal thickening. Palifermin also has other potential clinical applications including the acceleration of immune reconstitution and inhibition of graft-versus-host disease in patients undergoing HSCT, and mitigation of dysphagia in lung cancer patients treated with concurrent CT/RT. Palifermin is generally well tolerated with mild-to-moderate skin and oral adverse events. Future studies may expand the use of palifermin into other areas that would benefit from its cytoprotective and regenerative effects. PMID:24251854

    19. Mycobacterium bovis DNA Detection in Colostrum as a Potential Indicator of Vaccination Effectiveness against Bovine Tuberculosis

      PubMed Central

      Herrera-Rodríguez, Sara E.; Gordiano-Hidalgo, María Alejandra; López-Rincón, Gonzálo; Bojorquez-Narváez, Luis; Padilla-Ramírez, Francisco Javier; Pereira-Suárez, Ana Laura; Flores-Valdez, Mario Alberto

      2013-01-01

      Bovine tuberculosis (bTB) remains a problem on many dairy farms in Mexico, as well as a public health risk. We previously found a high frequency of Mycobacterium bovis DNA in colostrum from dairy cows using a nested PCR to detect mpb70. Since there are no reliable in vivo tests to determine the effectiveness of booster Mycobacterium bovis BCG vaccination against bTB, in this work we monitored M. bovis DNA in colostrum by using this nested PCR. In order to decrease the risk of adverse reactions in animals likely containing viable M. bovis, a single application of BCG and a subunit vaccine (EEP-1) formulated with M. bovis culture filtrate proteins (CFP) and a copolymer as the adjuvant was performed in tuberculin skin test-negative cattle (TST−), while TST reactor animals (TST+) received EEP-1 only. Booster immunization using EEP-1 was applied to both groups, 2 months after primary vaccination to whole herds and 12 months later to lactating cows. Colostrum samples were collected from 6 farms where the cows were vaccinated over a 12-month period postvaccination and, for comparison, from one control farm where the cows were not vaccinated with comparable bTB prevalence. We observed an inverse relationship between the frequency of M. bovis DNA detection and time postvaccination at the first (P < 0.001) and second (P < 0.0001) 6-month periods. Additionally, the concentration of gamma interferon (IFN-γ) was higher in mpb70 PCR-positive colostrum samples (P = 0.0003). These results suggest that M. bovis DNA frequency in colostrum could be a potentially useful biomarker for bTB vaccine efficacy on commercial dairy farms. PMID:23425597

    20. Mycobacterium bovis DNA detection in colostrum as a potential indicator of vaccination effectiveness against bovine tuberculosis.

      PubMed

      Herrera-Rodríguez, Sara E; Gordiano-Hidalgo, María Alejandra; López-Rincón, Gonzálo; Bojorquez-Narváez, Luis; Padilla-Ramírez, Francisco Javier; Pereira-Suárez, Ana Laura; Flores-Valdez, Mario Alberto; Estrada-Chávez, Ciro

      2013-04-01

      Bovine tuberculosis (bTB) remains a problem on many dairy farms in Mexico, as well as a public health risk. We previously found a high frequency of Mycobacterium bovis DNA in colostrum from dairy cows using a nested PCR to detect mpb70. Since there are no reliable in vivo tests to determine the effectiveness of booster Mycobacterium bovis BCG vaccination against bTB, in this work we monitored M. bovis DNA in colostrum by using this nested PCR. In order to decrease the risk of adverse reactions in animals likely containing viable M. bovis, a single application of BCG and a subunit vaccine (EEP-1) formulated with M. bovis culture filtrate proteins (CFP) and a copolymer as the adjuvant was performed in tuberculin skin test-negative cattle (TST(-)), while TST reactor animals (TST(+)) received EEP-1 only. Booster immunization using EEP-1 was applied to both groups, 2 months after primary vaccination to whole herds and 12 months later to lactating cows. Colostrum samples were collected from 6 farms where the cows were vaccinated over a 12-month period postvaccination and, for comparison, from one control farm where the cows were not vaccinated with comparable bTB prevalence. We observed an inverse relationship between the frequency of M. bovis DNA detection and time postvaccination at the first (P < 0.001) and second (P < 0.0001) 6-month periods. Additionally, the concentration of gamma interferon (IFN-γ) was higher in mpb70 PCR-positive colostrum samples (P = 0.0003). These results suggest that M. bovis DNA frequency in colostrum could be a potentially useful biomarker for bTB vaccine efficacy on commercial dairy farms.

    1. High-Content Imaging Assays for Identifying Compounds that Generate Superoxide and Impair Mitochondrial Membrane Potential in Adherent Eukaryotic Cells.

      PubMed

      Billis, Puja; Will, Yvonne; Nadanaciva, Sashi

      2014-02-19

      Reactive oxygen species (ROS) are constantly produced in cells as a result of aerobic metabolism. When there is an excessive production of ROS and the cell's antioxidant defenses are overwhelmed, oxidative stress occurs. The superoxide anion is a type of ROS that is produced primarily in mitochondria but is also generated in other regions of the cell including peroxisomes, endoplasmic reticulum, plasma membrane, and cytosol. Here, a high-content imaging assay using the dye dihydroethidium is described for identifying compounds that generate superoxide in eukaryotic cells. A high-content imaging assay using the fluorescent dye tetramethylrhodamine methyl ester is also described to identify compounds that impair mitochondrial membrane potential in eukaryotic cells. The purpose of performing both assays is to identify compounds that (1) generate superoxide at lower concentrations than they impair mitochondrial membrane potential, (2) impair mitochondrial membrane potential at lower concentrations than they generate superoxide, (3) generate superoxide and impair mitochondrial function at similar concentrations, and (4) do not generate superoxide or impair mitochondrial membrane potential during the duration of the assays.

    2. Plant DNA: A new substrate for carbon stable isotope analysis and a potential paleoenvironmental indicator

      NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

      Jahren, H.; Petersen, G.; Seberg, O.

      2003-12-01

      The δ 13C value of fossil plant materials can be used to gain insight into the dominant photosynthetic pathway, as well as other environmental attributes, of ancient plant ecosystems. Nucleotide sequences from land-plant nucleic acids extracted from 400 ka sediments have been recognized as the oldest authenticated fossil DNA, making the inference of plant taxonomy possible in substrates devoid of plant macro- and microfossils. If the C isotope relationship between bulk plant tissue and associated plant nucleic acids were known, fossil plant nucleic acids could be analyzed for δ 13C values and used as land-plant isotopic substrates within mixed organic material. Toward this end, we present δ 13C analyses of nucleic acids isolated from 12 higher-plant species that span the full phylogenetic diversity of seed plants. Extracted nucleic acids were dominated by double-stranded DNA containing fragments of rbcL gene ˜ 350 base pairs in length. The C isotope compositions of plant nucleic acids were found to be enriched in 13C relative to bulk plant tissue by a constant value (1.39 ‰ ). This study represents the first comparison of the δ 13C value of nucleic acids to the δ 13C value of bulk tissue for multicellular organisms; our results contrasted with the minimal fractionations reported for microorganisms. Because the isotopic enrichment δ 13C is constant across tracheophytes, the δ 13C value of fossil plant DNA can be used as a paleoenvironmental indicator, eliminating the need for morphological recognition of fossil plant material in paleoenvironmental studies.

    3. Plant DNA: A new substrate for carbon stable isotope analysis and a potential paleoenvironmental indicator

      NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

      Jahren, A. Hope; Petersen, Gitte; Seberg, Ole

      2004-03-01

      The δ13C value of fossil plant materials can be used to gain insight into the dominant photosynthetic pathway, as well as other environmental attributes, of ancient plant ecosystems. Nucleotide sequences from land plant nucleic acids extracted from 400 ka fossil sediments have been recognized as the oldest authenticated fossil deoxyribonucleic acid (DNA), making the inference of plant taxonomy possible in substrates devoid of plant macrofossils and microfossils. If the C isotope relationship between bulk plant tissue and associated plant nucleic acids were known, fossil plant nucleic acids could be analyzed for δ13C value and used as land plant isotopic substrates within mixed organic material. Toward this end, we present δ13C analyses of nucleic acids isolated from 12 higher plant species that span the full phylogenetic diversity of seed plants. Extracted nucleic acids were dominated by double-stranded DNA containing fragments of rbcL gene ˜350 base pairs in length. The C isotope compositions of plant nucleic acids were found to be enriched in 13C relative to bulk plant tissue by a constant value = 1.39‰. This study represents the first comparison of the δ13C value of nucleic acids to the δ13C value of bulk tissue for multicellular organisms; our results contrasted with the minimal fractionations reported for microorganisms. Because the isotopic enrichment is constant across tracheophytes, the δ13C value of fossil plant DNA can be used as a paleoenvironmental indicator, eliminating the need for morphological recognition of fossil plant material in paleoenvironmental studies.

    4. Distribution and Potential Indicators of Hospitalized Cases of Neurocysticercosis and Epilepsy in Ecuador from 1996 to 2008

      PubMed Central

      Gabriël, Sarah; Benitez-Ortiz, Washington; Saegerman, Claude; Dorny, Pierre; Berkvens, Dirk; Abatih, Emmanuel Nji

      2015-01-01

      Background Epilepsy is one of the most common signs of Neurocysticercosis (NCC). In this study, spatial and temporal variations in the incidence of hospitalized cases (IHC) of epilepsy and NCC in Ecuadorian municipalities were analyzed. Additionally, potential socio-economic and landscape indicators were evaluated in order to understand in part the macro-epidemiology of the Taenia solium taeniasis/cysticercosis complex. Methodology Data on the number of hospitalized epilepsy and NCC cases by municipality of residence were obtained from morbidity-hospital systems in Ecuador. SatScan software was used to determine whether variations in the IHC of epilepsy and NCC in space and time. In addition, several socio-economic and landscape variables at municipality level were used to study factors intervening in the macro-epidemiology of these diseases. Negative Binomial regression models through stepwise selection and Bayesian Model Averaging (BMA) were used to explain the variations in the IHC of epilepsy and NCC. Principal findings Different clusters were identified through space and time. Traditional endemic zones for NCC and epilepsy, recognized in other studies were confirmed in our study. However, for both disorders more recent clusters were identified. Among municipalities, an increasing tendency for IHC of epilepsy, and a decreasing tendency for the IHC of NCC were observed over time. In contrast, within municipalities a positive linear relationship between both disorders was found. An increase in the implementation of systems for eliminating excrements would help to reduce the IHC of epilepsy by 1.00% (IC95%; 0.2%–1.8%) and by 5.12% (IC95%; 3.63%-6.59%) for the IHC of NCC. The presence of pig production was related to IHC of NCC. Conclusion/Significance Both disorders were related to the lack of an efficient system for eliminating excrements. Given the appearance of recent epilepsy clusters, these locations should be studied in depth to discriminate epilepsies due

    5. Predatory online behavior: modus operandi of convicted sex offenders in identifying potential victims and contacting minors over the internet.

      PubMed

      Malesky, L Alvin

      2007-01-01

      Sex offenders have used the Internet to identify and contact minors for sexual exploitation (Armagh, 1998; Hernandez, 2000; Lamb, 1998; Lanning, 1998). Yet little is known about how these individuals select their online victims. In order to gain a better understanding of this behavior, the online activity of 31 men who perpetrated or attempted to perpetrate contact sex offenses against minors they communicated with via the Internet, was examined. Three-fourths of the participants monitored chat room dialogue and almost one-half reviewed online profiles of minors in an attempt to identify potential victims. Recommendations to increase the online safety of children and adolescents are discussed.

    6. Fogs and Clouds are a Potential Indicator of a Local Water Source in Valles Marineris

      NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

      Leung, Cecilia W. S.; Rafkin, Scot C. R.; Stillman, David E.; McEwen, Alfred S.

      2016-04-01

      atmospheric origin of volatiles. If nocturnal clouds and fogs are present in Valles Marineris and not on the surrounding terrain, the modeled atmospheric thermal field points to an active source of water in the canyon. This source may be related to the water source for RSL and bolsters the hypothesis for a subsurface water reservoir. An atmospheric origin of water for RSL via deliquescence on salt requires an effective mechanism to trap water over small areas to support the estimated volumes of water in RSL. No such mechanism has been identified. However, there is evidence that the atmosphere still exerts control on the formation and activity of RSL through thermal effects. References: [1] McEwen, A. et al., (2011) Science, 333, 740-743. [2] McEwen, A. et al., (2014) Nature GeoSci, 7, 53-58. [3] Stillman, D. et al. (2016) Icarus, 265, 125-138. [4] McEwen, A. et al., (2015) EPSC, 786. [5] Wang., A. et al., 46th LPSC, #2483. [6] Möhlmann, D.T. et al. (2009) Planetary and Space Science, 57(14), 1987-1992. [7] Smith, M. (2008) AREPS 36, 191-219.

    7. Urban liveability: emerging lessons from Australia for exploring the potential for indicators to measure the social determinants of health.

      PubMed

      Badland, Hannah; Whitzman, Carolyn; Lowe, Melanie; Davern, Melanie; Aye, Lu; Butterworth, Iain; Hes, Dominique; Giles-Corti, Billie

      2014-06-01

      It has long been recognised that urban form impacts on health outcomes and their determinants. There is growing interest in creating indicators of liveability to measure progress towards achieving a wide range of policy outcomes, including enhanced health and wellbeing, and reduced inequalities. This review aimed to: 1) bring together the concepts of urban 'liveability' and social determinants of health; 2) synthesise the various liveability indicators developed to date; and 3) assess their quality using a health and wellbeing lens. Between 2011 and 2013, the research team reviewed 114 international academic and policy documents, as well as reports related to urban liveability. Overall, 233 indicators were found. Of these, 61 indicators were regarded as promising, 57 indicators needed further development, and 115 indicators were not useful for our purposes. Eleven domains of liveability were identified that likely contribute to health and wellbeing through the social determinants of health. These were: crime and safety; education; employment and income; health and social services; housing; leisure and culture; local food and other goods; natural environment; public open space; transport; and social cohesion and local democracy. Many of the indicators came from Australian sources; however most remain relevant from a 'global north' perspective. Although many indicators were identified, there was inconsistency in how these domains were measured. Few have been validated to assess their association with health and wellbeing outcomes, and little information was provided for how they should be applied to guide urban policy and practice. There is a substantial opportunity to further develop these measures to create a series of robust and evidence-based liveability indices, which could be linked with existing health and wellbeing data to better inform urban planning policies within Australia and beyond.

    8. Incidents of potential public health significance identified using national surveillance of US poison center data (2008–2012)

      PubMed Central

      LAW, R. K.; SHEIKH, S.; BRONSTEIN, A.; THOMAS, R.; SPILLER, H. A.; SCHIER, J. G.

      2015-01-01

      Background The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and the American Association of Poison Control Centers conduct national surveillance on data collected by US poison centers to identify incidents of potential public health significance (IPHS). The overarching goals of this collaboration are to improve CDC’s national surveillance capacity for public health threats, identify early markers of public health incidents and enhance situational awareness. The National Poison Data System (NPDS) is used as a surveillance system to automatically identify data anomalies. Purpose To characterize data anomalies and IPHS captured by national surveillance of poison center data over 5 years. Methods Data anomalies are identified through three surveillance methodologies: call-volume, clinical effect, and case-based. Anomalies are reviewed by a team of epidemiologists and clinical toxicologists to determine IPHS using standardized criteria. The authors reviewed IPHS identified by these surveillance activities from 2008 through 2012. Results Call-volume surveillance identified 384 IPHS; most were related to gas and fume exposures (n=229; 59.6%) with the most commonly implicated substance being carbon monoxide (CO) (n=92; 22.8%). Clinical-effect surveillance identified 138 IPHS; the majority were related to gas and fume exposures (n=58; 42.0%) and gastrointestinal complaints (n=84; 16.2%), and the most commonly implicated substance was CO (n=20; 14.4%). Among the 11 case-based surveillance definitions, the botulism case definition yielded the highest percentage of identified agent-specific illness. Conclusions A small proportion of data anomalies were designated as IPHS. Of these, CO releases were the most frequently reported IPHS and gastrointestinal syndromes were the most commonly reported illness manifestations. poison center data surveillance may be used as an approach to identify exposures, illnesses, and incidents of importance at the national and state level

    9. Physical examination of potential tissue donors: results of a risk management procedure to identify the critical elements of the physical examination.

      PubMed

      van Wijk, Marja J; van Geyt, Caroline; Laven, Audrey B H; Beele, Hilde; Bokhorst, Arlinke G

      2012-12-01

      To identify critical elements of physical examination (PE) of potential tissue donors that could help to improve the safety of tissue transplantation. Physical signs were identified that can indicate the presence of a contraindication mentioned in EU Directive 2006/17/EC and that can theoretically be detected at PE. A risk assessment was designed, according to the Failure Mode and Effects Analysis model. Signs were scored on several aspects, taking into account various control measures, either required in the EU Directive or additional non-required measures. 106 signs associated with general and tissue-specific contraindications were identified. Signs of advanced infection with HIV, hepatitis B/C and syphilis (n = 13, 12.3%) can be omitted, since these contraindications will be detected by the required serological testing. With the required control measures, risk priorities are unacceptably "high" for 17.3% of the signs. For 64.5% of the signs, additional control measures are possible, which result in acceptable risk priorities for all signs. This risk management procedure identified the minimal necessary content of PE in potential tissue donors. Furthermore, risks associated with tissue donation were elucidated and possible risk control measures were identified as well as their impact on the safety of tissue transplantation.

    10. Integrated Molecular Profiling of Human Gastric Cancer Identifies DDR2 as a Potential Regulator of Peritoneal Dissemination.

      PubMed

      Kurashige, Junji; Hasegawa, Takanori; Niida, Atsushi; Sugimachi, Keishi; Deng, Niantao; Mima, Kosuke; Uchi, Ryutaro; Sawada, Genta; Takahashi, Yusuke; Eguchi, Hidetoshi; Inomata, Masashi; Kitano, Seigo; Fukagawa, Takeo; Sasako, Mitsuru; Sasaki, Hiroki; Sasaki, Shin; Mori, Masaki; Yanagihara, Kazuyoshi; Baba, Hideo; Miyano, Satoru; Tan, Patrick; Mimori, Koshi

      2016-03-03

      Peritoneal dissemination is the most frequent, incurable metastasis occurring in patients with advanced gastric cancer (GC). However, molecular mechanisms driving peritoneal dissemination still remain poorly understood. Here, we aimed to provide novel insights into the molecular mechanisms that drive the peritoneal dissemination of GC. We performed combined expression analysis with in vivo-selected metastatic cell lines and samples from 200 GC patients to identify driver genes of peritoneal dissemination. The driver-gene functions associated with GC dissemination were examined using a mouse xenograft model. We identified a peritoneal dissemination-associated expression signature, whose profile correlated with those of genes related to development, focal adhesion, and the extracellular matrix. Among the genes comprising the expression signature, we identified that discoidin-domain receptor 2 (DDR2) as a potential regulator of peritoneal dissemination. The DDR2 was upregulated by the loss of DNA methylation and that DDR2 knockdown reduced peritoneal metastasis in a xenograft model. Dasatinib, an inhibitor of the DDR2 signaling pathway, effectively suppressed peritoneal dissemination. DDR2 was identified as a driver gene for GC dissemination from the combined expression signature and can potentially serve as a novel therapeutic target for inhibiting GC peritoneal dissemination.

    11. On the Design of Broad Based Screening Assays to Identify Potential Pharmacological Chaperones of Protein Misfolding Diseases†

      PubMed Central

      Naik, Subhashchandra; Zhang, Na; Gao, Phillip; Fisher, Mark T.

      2013-01-01

      Correcting aberrant folds that develop during protein folding disease states is now an active research endeavor that is attracting increasing attention from both academic and industrial circles. One particular approach focuses on developing or identifying small molecule correctors or pharmacological chaperones that specifically stabilize the native fold. Unfortunately, the limited screening platforms available to rapidly identify or validate potential drug candidates are usually inadequate or slow because the folding disease proteins in question are often transiently folded and/or aggregation-prone, complicating and/or interfering with the assay outcomes. In this review, we outline and discuss the numerous platform options currently being employed to identify small molecule therapeutics for folding diseases. Finally, we describe a new stability screening approach that is broad based and is easily applicable toward a very large number of both common and rare protein folding diseases. The label free screening method described herein couples the promiscuity of the GroEL binding to transient aggregation-prone hydrophobic folds with surface plasmon resonance enabling one to rapidly identify potential small molecule pharmacological chaperones. PMID:23339304

    12. PIPc study: development of indicators of potentially inappropriate prescribing in children (PIPc) in primary care using a modified Delphi technique

      PubMed Central

      Barry, Emma; O'Brien, Kirsty; Cooper, Janine; Redmond, Patrick; Hughes, Carmel M; Bennett, Kathleen; Fahey, Tom; Smith, Susan M

      2016-01-01

      Objective There is limited evidence regarding the quality of prescribing for children in primary care. Several prescribing criteria (indicators) have been developed to assess the appropriateness of prescribing in older and middle-aged adults but few are relevant to children. The objective of this study was to develop a set of prescribing indicators that can be applied to prescribing or dispensing data sets to determine the prevalence of potentially inappropriate prescribing in children (PIPc) in primary care settings. Design Two-round modified Delphi consensus method. Setting Irish and UK general practice. Participants A project steering group consisting of academic and clinical general practitioners (GPs) and pharmacists was formed to develop a list of indicators from literature review and clinical expertise. 15 experts consisting of GPs, pharmacists and paediatricians from the Republic of Ireland and the UK formed the Delphi panel. Results 47 indicators were reviewed by the project steering group and 16 were presented to the Delphi panel. In the first round of this exercise, consensus was achieved on nine of these indicators. Of the remaining seven indicators, two were removed following review of expert panel comments and discussion of the project steering group. The second round of the Delphi process focused on the remaining five indicators, which were amended based on first round feedback. Three indicators were accepted following the second round of the Delphi process and the remaining two indicators were removed. The final list consisted of 12 indicators categorised by respiratory system (n=6), gastrointestinal system (n=2), neurological system (n=2) and dermatological system (n=2). Conclusions The PIPc indicators are a set of prescribing criteria developed for use in children in primary care in the absence of clinical information. The utility of these criteria will be tested in further studies using prescribing databases. PMID:27601499

    13. A protocol for a scoping and qualitative study to identify and evaluate indications for damage control surgery and damage control interventions in civilian trauma patients

      PubMed Central

      Roberts, Derek J; Zygun, David A; Kirkpatrick, Andrew W; Ball, Chad G; Faris, Peter D; Bobrovitz, Niklas; Robertson, Helen Lee; Stelfox, H Thomas

      2014-01-01

      Introduction Initial abbreviated surgery with planned reoperation (damage control surgery) is frequently used for major trauma patients to rapidly control haemorrhage while limiting surgical stress. Although damage control surgery may decrease mortality risk among the severely injured, it may also be associated with several complications when inappropriately applied. We seek to scope the literature on trauma damage control surgery, identify its proposed indications, map and clarify their definitions, and examine the content and evidence on which they are based. We also seek to generate a comprehensive list of unique indications to inform an appropriateness rating process. Methods and analysis We will search 11 electronic bibliographic databases, included article bibliographies and grey literature sources for citations involving civilian trauma patients that proposed one or more indications for damage control surgery or a damage control intervention. Indications will be classified into a predefined conceptual framework and categorised and described using qualitative content analysis. Constant comparative methodology will be used to create, modify and test codes describing principal findings or injuries (eg, bilobar liver injury) and associated decision variables (eg, coagulopathy) that comprise the reported indications. After a unique list of codes have been developed, we will use the organisational system recommended by the RAND/University of California, Los Angeles (RAND-UCLA) Appropriateness Rating Method to group principal findings or injuries into chapters (subdivided by associated decision variables) according to broader clinical findings encountered during surgical practice (eg, major liver injury). Ethics and dissemination This study will constitute the first step in a multistep research programme aimed at developing appropriate, evidence-informed indications for damage control in civilian trauma patients. With use of an integrated knowledge translation

    14. Can inbound and domestic medical tourism improve your bottom line? Identifying the potential of a U.S. tourism market.

      PubMed

      Fottler, Myron D; Malvey, Donna; Asi, Yara; Kirchner, Sarah; Warren, Natalia A

      2014-01-01

      In large part due to current economic conditions and the political uncertainties of healthcare reform legislation, hospitals need to identify new sources of revenue. Two potentially untapped sources are inbound (international) and domestic (within the United States) medical tourists. This case study uses data from a large, urban healthcare system in the southeastern United States to quantify its potential market opportunities for medical tourism. The data were mined from electronic health records, and descriptive frequency analysis was used to provide a preliminary market assessment. This approach permits healthcare systems to move beyond anecdotal information and assess the relative market potential of their particular geographic area and the diagnostic services they offer for attracting inbound and domestic medical tourists. Implications for healthcare executives and guidance on how they can focus marketing efforts are discussed.

    15. Potentials for Indication of Potentially Harmful Toxic Algal Blooms Using PROBA1-CHRIS Hyperspectral Imagery- A Case Study in Burkina Faso

      NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

      Beiermann, Timo

      2010-12-01

      Toxic algal blooms are an issue affecting water quality and can cause harmful health impacts. The aim of the conducted case study is to assess such blooms by chlorophyll a and phycocyanin detection as indicators of the occurrence. Using demonstrated single reflectance ratio algorithms published as in [7] and processed with provided tools for hyperspectral Proba1-CHRIS imagery in a study site including Loumbila reservoir near Ouagadougou, capital of Burkina Faso to investigate potentials of this approach.

    16. Clonal analyses and gene profiling identify genetic biomarkers of the thermogenic potential of human brown and white preadipocytes.

      PubMed

      Xue, Ruidan; Lynes, Matthew D; Dreyfuss, Jonathan M; Shamsi, Farnaz; Schulz, Tim J; Zhang, Hongbin; Huang, Tian Lian; Townsend, Kristy L; Li, Yiming; Takahashi, Hirokazu; Weiner, Lauren S; White, Andrew P; Lynes, Maureen S; Rubin, Lee L; Goodyear, Laurie J; Cypess, Aaron M; Tseng, Yu-Hua

      2015-07-01

      Targeting brown adipose tissue (BAT) content or activity has therapeutic potential for treating obesity and the metabolic syndrome by increasing energy expenditure. However, both inter- and intra-individual differences contribute to heterogeneity in human BAT and potentially to differential thermogenic capacity in human populations. Here we generated clones of brown and white preadipocytes from human neck fat and characterized their adipogenic and thermogenic differentiation. We combined an uncoupling protein 1 (UCP1) reporter system and expression profiling to define novel sets of gene signatures in human preadipocytes that could predict the thermogenic potential of the cells once they were maturated. Knocking out the positive UCP1 regulators, PREX1 and EDNRB, in brown preadipocytes using CRISPR-Cas9 markedly abolished the high level of UCP1 in brown adipocytes differentiated from the preadipocytes. Finally, we were able to prospectively isolate adipose progenitors with great thermogenic potential using the cell surface marker CD29. These data provide new insights into the cellular heterogeneity in human fat and offer potential biomarkers for identifying thermogenically competent preadipocytes.

    17. Identifying Factors for Optimal Development of Health-Related Websites: A Delphi Study Among Experts and Potential Future Users

      PubMed Central

      van Osch, Liesbeth; de Vries, Hein

      2012-01-01

      Background The Internet has become a popular medium for offering tailored and targeted health promotion programs to the general public. However, suboptimal levels of program use in the target population limit the public health impact of these programs. Optimizing program development is considered as one of the main processes to increase usage rates. Objective To distinguish factors potentially related to optimal development of health-related websites by involving both experts and potential users. By considering and incorporating the opinions of experts and potential users in the development process, involvement in the program is expected to increase, consequently resulting in increased appreciation, lower levels of attrition, and higher levels of sustained use. Methods We conducted a systematic three-round Delphi study through the Internet. Both national and international experts (from the fields of health promotion, health psychology, e-communication, and technical Web design) and potential users were invited via email to participate. During this study an extensive list of factors potentially related to optimal development of health-related websites was identified, by focusing on factors related to layout, general and risk information provision, questionnaire use, additional services, and ease of use. Furthermore, we assessed the extent to which experts and potential users agreed on the importance of these factors. Differences as well as similarities among experts and potentials users were deduced. Results In total, 20 of 62 contacted experts participated in the first round (32% response rate); 60 of 200 contacted experts (30% response rate) and 210 potential users (95% response rate) completed the second-round questionnaire, and 32 of 60 contacted experts completed the third round (53% response rate). Results revealed important factors consented upon by experts and potential users (eg, ease of use, clear structure, and detailed health information provision), as

    18. CD109 is identified as a potential nasopharyngeal carcinoma biomarker using aptamer selected by cell-SELEX

      PubMed Central

      Jia, Wenting; Ren, Caiping; Wang, Lei; Zhu, Bin; Jia, Wei; Gao, Menghui; Zeng, Fei; Zeng, Liang; Xia, Xiaomeng; Zhang, Xiaobing; Fu, Ting; Li, Shasha; Du, Can; Jiang, Xingjun; Chen, Yuxiang; Tan, Weihong; Zhao, Zilong; Liu, Weidong

      2016-01-01

      Nasopharyngeal carcinoma (NPC) is one of the most prevailing cancers in southern China and southern Asia. Because of the nonspecific symptoms and lack of effective biomarker, most patients are diagnosed at advanced stages, resulting in poor 5-year survival rate. To identify a novel NPC biomarker facilitating early detection and effective therapy of NPC, a two-step strategy consisting of cancer cell-Systematic Evolution of Ligands by EXponential enrichment (cell-SELEX) procedure and aptamer-based purification approach was developed. Using cell-SELEX procedure, four aptamers (S3, S5, S12 and S27) differentiating the molecular differences between NPC cells and NP cells were successfully screened. Then, using aptamer-based protein purification, membrane protein CD109 was identified as the target of aptamer S3. CD109 protein was further identified to be over-expressed in NPC cell lines and clinic tissues, but not or low in NP cell line and clinic NP tissues, detected by western blot and immunohistochemistry experiments. Our study demonstrated that CD109 identified by cell-SELEX and aptamer-based purification strategy might be used as a potential NPC biomarker for early diagnosis and targeted therapy. PMID:27419372

    19. Secretome analysis identifies potential virulence factors of Diplodia corticola, a fungal pathogen involved in cork oak (Quercus suber) decline.

      PubMed

      Fernandes, Isabel; Alves, Artur; Correia, António; Devreese, Bart; Esteves, Ana Cristina

      2014-01-01

      The characterisation of the secretome of phytopathogenic fungi may contribute to elucidate the molecular mechanisms of pathogenesis. This is particularly relevant for Diplodia corticola, a fungal plant pathogen belonging to the family Botryosphaeriaceae, whose genome remains unsequenced. This phytopathogenic fungus is recognised as one of the most important pathogens of cork oak, being related to the decline of cork oak forests in the Iberian Peninsula. Unfortunately, secretome analysis of filamentous fungi is limited by the low protein concentration and by the presence of many interfering substances, such as polysaccharides, which affect the separation and analysis by 1D and 2D gel electrophoresis. We compared six protein extraction protocols concerning their suitability for further application with proteomic workflows. The protocols involving protein precipitation were the most efficient, with emphasis on TCA-acetone protocol, allowing us to identify the most abundant proteins on the secretome of this plant pathogen. Approximately 60% of the spots detected were identified, all corresponding to extracellular proteins. Most proteins identified were carbohydrate degrading enzymes and proteases that may be related to D. corticola pathogenicity. Although the secretome was assessed in a noninfection environment, potential virulence factors such as the putative glucan-β-glucosidase, neuraminidase, and the putative ferulic acid esterase were identified. The data obtained forms a useful basis for a deeper understanding of the pathogenicity and infection biology of D. corticola. Moreover, it will contribute to the development of proteomics studies on other members of the Botryosphaeriaceae.

    20. Identifying outcome-based indicators and developing a curriculum for a continuing medical education programme on rational prescribing using a modified Delphi process

      PubMed Central

      Esmaily, Hamideh M; Savage, Carl; Vahidi, Rezagoli; Amini, Abolghasem; Zarrintan, Mohammad Hossein; Wahlstrom, Rolf

      2008-01-01

      Background Continuing medical education (CME) is compulsory for physicians in Iran. Recent studies in Iran show that modifications of CME elements are necessary to improve the effectiveness of the educational programmes. Other studies point to an inappropriate, even irrational drug prescribing. Based on a needs assessment study regarding CME for general physicians in the East Azerbaijan province in Iran, rational prescribing practice was recognized as a high priority issue. Considering different educational methods, outcome-based education has been proposed as a suitable approach for CME. The purpose of the study was to obtain experts' consensus about appropriate educational outcomes of rational prescribing for general physicians in CME and developing curricular contents for this education. Methods The study consisted of two phases: The first phase was conducted using a two-round Delphi consensus process to identify the outcome-based educational indicators regarding rational prescribing for general physicians in primary care (GPs). In the second phase the agreed indicators were submitted to panels of experts for assessment and determination of content for a CME program in the field. Results Twenty one learning outcomes were identified through a modified Delphi process. The indicators were used by the panels of experts and six educational topics were determined for the CME programme and the curricular content of each was defined. The topics were 1) Principles of prescription writing, 2) Adverse drug reactions, 3) Drug interactions, 4) Injections, 5) Antibiotic therapy, and 6) Anti-inflammatory agents therapy. One of the topics was not directly related to any outcome, raising a question about the need for a discussion on constructive alignment. Conclusions Consensus on learning outcomes was achieved and an educational guideline was designed. Before suggesting widespread use in the country the educational package should be tested in the CME context. PMID:18510774

    1. The environmental "risky" region: identifying land degradation processes through integration of socio-economic and ecological indicators in a multivariate regionalization model.

      PubMed

      Salvati, Luca; Zitti, Marco

      2009-11-01

      Although several studies have assessed Land Degradation (LD) states in the Mediterranean basin through the use of composite indices, relatively few have evaluated the impact of specific LD drivers at the local scale. In this work, a computational strategy is introduced to define homogeneous areas at risk and the main factors acting as determinants of LD. The procedure consists of three steps and is applied to a set of ten environmental indicators available at the municipality scale in Latium, central Italy. A principal component analysis extracting latent patterns and simplifying data complexity was carried out on the original data matrix. Subsequently, a k-means cluster analysis was applied on a restricted number of meaningful, latent factors extracted by PCA in order to produce a classification of the study area into homogeneous regions. Finally, a stepwise discriminant analysis was performed to determine which indicators contributed the most to the definition of homogeneous regions. Three classes of "risky" regions were identified according to the main drivers of LD acting at the local scale. These include: (i) soil sealing (coupled with landscape fragmentation, fire risk, and related processes), (ii) soil salinization due to agricultural intensification, and (iii) soil erosion due to farmland depopulation and land abandonment in sloping areas. Areas at risk for LD covered 56 and 63% of the investigated areas in 1970 and 2000, respectively.

    2. The Environmental ``Risky'' Region: Identifying Land Degradation Processes Through Integration of Socio-Economic and Ecological Indicators in a Multivariate Regionalization Model

      NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

      Salvati, Luca; Zitti, Marco

      2009-11-01

      Although several studies have assessed Land Degradation (LD) states in the Mediterranean basin through the use of composite indices, relatively few have evaluated the impact of specific LD drivers at the local scale. In this work, a computational strategy is introduced to define homogeneous areas at risk and the main factors acting as determinants of LD. The procedure consists of three steps and is applied to a set of ten environmental indicators available at the municipality scale in Latium, central Italy. A principal component analysis extracting latent patterns and simplifying data complexity was carried out on the original data matrix. Subsequently, a k-means cluster analysis was applied on a restricted number of meaningful, latent factors extracted by PCA in order to produce a classification of the study area into homogeneous regions. Finally, a stepwise discriminant analysis was performed to determine which indicators contributed the most to the definition of homogeneous regions. Three classes of “risky” regions were identified according to the main drivers of LD acting at the local scale. These include: (i) soil sealing (coupled with landscape fragmentation, fire risk, and related processes), (ii) soil salinization due to agricultural intensification, and (iii) soil erosion due to farmland depopulation and land abandonment in sloping areas. Areas at risk for LD covered 56 and 63% of the investigated areas in 1970 and 2000, respectively.

    3. Mycobacterium growth indicator tube testing in conjunction with the AccuProbe or the AMPLICOR-PCR assay for detecting and identifying mycobacteria from sputum samples.

      PubMed Central

      Ichiyama, S; Iinuma, Y; Yamori, S; Hasegawa, Y; Shimokata, K; Nakashima, N

      1997-01-01

      We have compared the ability of the Mycobacterium Growth Indicator Tube (MGIT) system, a new culture method with an oxygen-sensitive fluorescent sensor, to recover mycobacteria from sputum samples with the abilities of egg-based medium and the Septi-Chek AFB system. We have also assessed the clinical utility of the AccuProbe or the AMPLICOR-PCR assay to directly identify Mycobacterium tuberculosis complex and M. avium-M. intracellulare complex (MAC) from positive MGITs. From 382 sputum samples, 99 isolates of M. tuberculosis complex and 20 isolates of MAC were recovered. The MGIT system had the highest recovery rates for M. tuberculosis complex (97.0%) and MAC (100%), compared to recovery rates of 51.5 and 65.0%, respectively, with the egg-based medium and 81.8 and 85.0%, respectively, with the Septi-Chek AFB system. The shortest recovery times were also achieved with the MGIT system: 16.6 days for M. tuberculosis complex and 12.0 days for MAC, compared to 27.1 and 20.1 days, respectively, with the egg-based medium and 21.4 and 13.2 days, respectively, with the Septi-Chek AFB system. The AccuProbe identified 74 (77.1%) of the 96 M. tuberculosis complex-positive MGITs and 17 (85.0%) of the 20 MAC-positive vials. The AMPLICOR system correctly identified 94 (97.9%) of the 96 M. tuberculosis complex-positive MGITs and all 20 MAC-positive vials. Therefore, the MGIT system used in conjunction with the AMPLICOR system is a rapid and sensitive method for detecting and identifying M. tuberculosis complex and MAC isolates from sputum samples. PMID:9230374

    4. Biochemical leaf traits as indicators of tolerance potential in tree species from the Brazilian Atlantic Forest against oxidative environmental stressors.

      PubMed

      Brandão, Solange E; Bulbovas, Patricia; Lima, Marcos E L; Domingos, Marisa

      2017-01-01

      The tolerance potential against the oxidative injury in native plants from forest ecosystems affected by environmental stressors depends on how efficiently they keep their pro-oxidant/antioxidant balance. Great variations in plant tolerance are expected, highlighting the higher relevance of measuring biochemical leaf trait indicators of oxidative injury in species with similar functions in the forest than in single species. The use of this functional approach seems very useful in the Brazilian Atlantic Forest because it still holds high plant diversity and was the focus of this study. We aimed at determining the tolerance potential of tree species from the Atlantic Forest remnants in SE Brazil against multiple oxidative environmental stressors. We assumed that pioneer tree species are more tolerant against oxidative stress than non-pioneer tree species and that their tolerance potential vary spatially in response to distinct combined effects of oxidative environmental stressors. The study was carried out in three Atlantic Forest remnants, which differ in physiognomy, species composition, climatic characteristics and air pollution exposure. Leaves of three pioneer and three non-pioneer species were collected from each forest remnant during wet (January 2015) and dry periods (June 2015), for analyses of non-enzymatic and enzymatic antioxidants and oxidative injury indicators. Both hypotheses were confirmed. The pioneer tree species displayed biochemical leaf traits (e.g. high levels of ascorbic acid, glutathione and carotenoids and lower lipid peroxidation) that indicate their higher potential tolerance against oxidative environmental stressors than non-pioneer species. The biochemical leaf traits of both successional groups of species varied between the forest remnants, in response to a linear combination of oxidative environmental stressors, from natural (relative humidity and temperature) and anthropogenic sources (ozone and nitrogen dioxide).

    5. Assessing the potential hazard of chemical substances for the terrestrial environment. Development of hazard classification criteria and quantitative environmental indicators.

      PubMed

      Tarazona, J V; Fresno, A; Aycard, S; Ramos, C; Vega, M M; Carbonell, G

      2000-03-20

      Hazard assessment constitutes an essential tool in order to evaluate the potential effects of chemical substances on organisms and ecosystems. It includes as a first step, hazard identification, which must detect the potential dangers of the substance (i.e. the kind of effects that the substance may produce), and a second step to quantify each danger and to set the expected dose/response relationships. Hazard assessment plays a key role in the regulation of chemical substances, including pollution control and sustainable development. However, the aquatic environment has largely received more attention than terrestrial ecosystems. This paper presents the extrapolation of several basic concepts from the aquatic to the terrestrial compartment, and suggests possibilities for their regulatory use. Two specific proposals are discussed. The first focuses on the scientific basis of the hazard identification-classification criteria included in the EU regulations and their extrapolation to the terrestrial environment. The second focuses on the OECD programme for environmental indicators and the development of a soil pollution pressure indicator to quantify the potential hazards for the soil compartment and its associated terrestrial ecosystem related to the toxic chemicals applied deliberately (i.e. pesticides) or not (i.e. heavy metals in sludge-based fertilisers; industrial spills) to the soil.

    6. A Systematic In Silico Search for Target Similarity Identifies Several Approved Drugs with Potential Activity against the Plasmodium falciparum Apicoplast

      PubMed Central

      Bispo, Nadlla Alves; Culleton, Richard; Silva, Lourival Almeida; Cravo, Pedro

      2013-01-01

      Most of the drugs in use against Plasmodium falciparum share similar modes of action and, consequently, there is a need to identify alternative potential drug targets. Here, we focus on the apicoplast, a malarial plastid-like organelle of algal source which evolved through secondary endosymbiosis. We undertake a systematic in silico target-based identification approach for detecting drugs already approved for clinical use in humans that may be able to interfere with the P. falciparum apicoplast. The P. falciparum genome database GeneDB was used to compile a list of ≈600 proteins containing apicoplast signal peptides. Each of these proteins was treated as a potential drug target and its predicted sequence was used to interrogate three different freely available databases (Therapeutic Target Database, DrugBank and STITCH3.1) that provide synoptic data on drugs and their primary or putative drug targets. We were able to identify several drugs that are expected to interact with forty-seven (47) peptides predicted to be involved in the biology of the P. falciparum apicoplast. Fifteen (15) of these putative targets are predicted to have affinity to drugs that are already approved for clinical use but have never been evaluated against malaria parasites. We suggest that some of these drugs should be experimentally tested and/or serve as leads for engineering new antimalarials. PMID:23555651

    7. Identifying and tracing potential energy surfaces of electronic excitations with specific character via their transition origins: application to oxirane.

      PubMed

      Li, Jian-Hao; Zuehlsdorff, T J; Payne, M C; Hine, N D M

      2015-05-14

      We show that the transition origins of electronic excitations identified by quantified natural transition orbital (QNTO) analysis can be employed to connect potential energy surfaces (PESs) according to their character across a wide range of molecular geometries. This is achieved by locating the switching of transition origins of adiabatic potential surfaces as the geometry changes. The transition vectors for analysing transition origins are provided by linear response time-dependent density functional theory (TDDFT) calculations under the Tamm-Dancoff approximation. We study the photochemical CO ring opening of oxirane as an example and show that the results corroborate the traditional Gomer-Noyes mechanism derived experimentally. The knowledge of specific states for the reaction also agrees well with that given by previous theoretical work using TDDFT surface-hopping dynamics that was validated by high-quality quantum Monte Carlo calculations. We also show that QNTO can be useful for considerably larger and more complex systems: by projecting the excitations to those of a reference oxirane molecule, the approach is able to identify and analyse specific excitations of a trans-2,3-diphenyloxirane molecule.

    8. Differential Gene Expression in the Meristem and during Early Fruit Growth of Pisum sativum L. Identifies Potential Targets for Breeding

      PubMed Central

      Smitha Ninan, Annu; Shah, Anish; Song, Jiancheng; Jameson, Paula E.

      2017-01-01

      For successful molecular breeding it is important to identify targets to the gene family level, and in the specific species of interest, in this case Pisum sativum L. The cytokinins have been identified as a key breeding target due to their influence on plant architecture, and on seed size and sink activity. We focused on the cytokinin biosynthetic gene family (the IPTs) and the gene family key to the destruction of cytokinins (the CKXs), as well as other gene families potentially affected by changing cytokinin levels. These included key meristem genes (WUS and BAM1) and the transporter gene families, sucrose transporters (SUTs) and amino acid permeases (AAPs). We used reverse transcription quantitative PCR (RT-qPCR) to monitor gene expression in the vegetative meristem and in pre- and post-fertilisation young pea fruits. PsWUS expression was specific to the shoot apical meristem while PsBAM1 was highly expressed in the shoot apical meristem (SAM) but was also expressed at a low level in the young fruit. Differential expression was shown between genes and within gene families for IPT, CKX, SUT, and AAP. PsCKX7 showed strong gene family member-specific expression in the SAM, and was also expressed in young pea fruits. We suggest that PsCKX7 is a potential target for downregulation via molecular breeding or gene editing. PMID:28212324

    9. Zebrafish: an emerging technology for in vivo pharmacological assessment to identify potential safety liabilities in early drug discovery

      PubMed Central

      Barros, T P; Alderton, W K; Reynolds, H M; Roach, A G; Berghmans, S

      2008-01-01

      The zebrafish is a well-established model organism used in developmental biology. In the last decade, this technology has been extended to the generation of high-value knowledge on safety risks of novel drugs. Indeed, the larval zebrafish appear to combine advantages of whole organism phenotypic assays and those (rapid production of results with minimal resource engagement) of in vitro high-throughput screening techniques. Thus, if appropriately evaluated, it can offer undeniable advantages in drug discovery for identification of target and off-target effects. Here, we review some applications of zebrafish to identify potential safety liabilities, particularly before lead/candidate selection. For instance, zebrafish cardiovascular system can be used to reveal decreases in heart rate and atrial–ventricular dissociation, which may signal human ether-a-go-go-related gene (hERG) channel blockade. Another main area of interest is the CNS, where zebrafish behavioural assays have been and are further being developed into screening platforms for assessment of locomotor activity, convulsant and proconvulsant liability, cognitive impairment, drug dependence potential and impaired visual and auditory functions. Zebrafish also offer interesting possibilities for evaluating effects on bone density and gastrointestinal function. Furthermore, available knowledge of the renal system in larval zebrafish can allow identification of potential safety issues of drug candidates on this often neglected area in early development platforms. Although additional validation is certainly needed, the zebrafish is emerging as a versatile in vivo animal model to identify off-target effects that need investigation and further clarification early in the drug discovery process to reduce the current, high degree of attrition in development. PMID:18552866

    10. SPLAT: Using Spectral Indices to Identify and Characterize Ultracool Stars, Brown Dwarfs and Exoplanets in Deep Surveys and as Companions to Nearby Stars

      NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

      Aganze, Christian; Burgasser, Adam J.; Martin, Eduardo; Konopacky, Quinn; Masters, Daniel C.

      2016-06-01

      The majority of ultracool dwarf stars and brown dwarfs currently known were identified in wide-field red optical and infrared surveys, enabling measures of the local, typically isolated, population in a relatively shallow (<100 pc radius) volume. Constraining the properties of the wider Galactic population (scale height, radial distribution, Population II sources), and close brown dwarf and exoplanet companions to nearby stars, requires specialized instrumentation, such as high-contrast, coronagraphic spectrometers (e.g., Gemini/GPI, VLT/Sphere, Project 1640); and deep spectral surveys (e.g., HST/WFC3 parallel fields, Euclid). We present a set of quantitative methodologies to identify and robustly characterize sources for these specific populations, based on templates and tools developed as part of the SpeX Prism Library Analysis Toolkit. In particular, we define and characterize specifically-tuned sets spectral indices that optimize selection of cool dwarfs and distinguish rare populations (subdwarfs, young planetary-mass objects) based on low-resolution, limited-wavelength-coverage spectral data; and present a template-matching classification method for these instruments. We apply these techniques to HST/WFC3 parallel fields data in the WISPS and HST-3D programs, where our spectral index set allows high completeness and low contamination for searches of late M, L and T dwarfs to distances out to ~3 kpc.The material presented here is based on work supported by the National Aeronautics and Space Administration under Grant No. NNX15AI75G.

    11. Identifying host sources, human health risk and indicators of Cryptosporidium and Giardia in a Canadian watershed influenced by urban and rural activities.

      PubMed

      Van Dyke, Michele I; Ong, Corinne S L; Prystajecky, Natalie A; Isaac-Renton, Judith L; Huck, Peter M

      2012-06-01

      Cryptosporidium and Giardia were characterized in a watershed in southern Ontario, Canada, over a 2½ year period. River samples were collected every two weeks, primarily near a municipal drinking water treatment plant intake. Cryptosporidium and Giardia were frequently detected with an overall occurrence rate of 88 and 97%, respectively. Giardia concentrations were higher than Cryptosporidium, with median values of 80 cysts 100 L(-1) and 12 oocysts 100 L(-1), respectively. Although pathogens rarely show a significant relationship with fecal or water quality indicators, this study determined that Cryptosporidium, but not Giardia, was significantly correlated with Escherichia coli, turbidity and river flow. There was no correlation between the two types of protozoa, and only Giardia showed a seasonal trend with higher concentrations at cold water temperatures. Cryptosporidium genotyping of all samples found that farm animals and wildlife were an important contributor of oocysts in the watershed, and that Cryptosporidium strains/genotypes of medium to high risk for human infection (C. hominis, C. parvum and C. ubiquitum) were detected in 16% of samples. This study was able to identify Cryptosporidium host sources and human health risk, and to identify differences between Cryptosporidium and Giardia occurrence in the watershed.

    12. Quantification of potential impurities by a stability indicating UV-HPLC method in niacinamide active pharmaceutical ingredient.

      PubMed

      Thomas, Saji; Bharti, Amber; Tharpa, Kalsang; Agarwal, Ashutosh

      2012-02-23

      A sensitive, stability indicating reverse phase UV-HPLC method has been developed for the quantitative determination of potential impurities of niacinamide active pharmaceutical ingredient. Efficient chromatographic separation was achieved on C18 stationary phase in isocratic mode using simple mobile phase. Forced degradation study confirmed that the newly developed method was specific and selective to the degradation products. Major degradation of the drug substance was found to occur under oxidative stress conditions to form niacinamide N-oxide. The method was validated according to ICH guidelines with respect to specificity, precision, linearity and accuracy. Regression analysis showed correlation coefficient value greater than 0.999 for niacinamide and its six impurities. Detection limit of impurities was in the range of 0.003-0.005% indicating the high sensitivity of the newly developed method. Accuracy of the method was established based on the recovery obtained between 93.3% and 113.3% for all impurities.

    13. Measurement of extravascular lung water using the single indicator method in patients: research and potential clinical value.

      PubMed

      Brown, Lisa M; Liu, Kathleen D; Matthay, Michael A

      2009-10-01

      Extravascular lung water includes all of the fluid within the lung but outside of the vasculature. Lung water increases as a result of increased hydrostatic vascular pressure or from an increase in lung endothelial and epithelial permeability or both. Experimentally, extravascular lung water has been measured gravimetrically. Clinically, the chest radiograph is used to determine whether extravascular lung water is present but is an insensitive instrument for determining the quantity of lung water. Bedside measurement of extravascular lung water in patients is now possible using a single indicator thermodilution method. This review critically evaluates the experimental and clinical evidence supporting the potential value of measuring extravascular lung water in patients using the single indicator method.

    14. Measurement of extravascular lung water using the single indicator method in patients: research and potential clinical value

      PubMed Central

      Liu, Kathleen D.; Matthay, Michael A.

      2009-01-01

      Extravascular lung water includes all of the fluid within the lung but outside of the vasculature. Lung water increases as a result of increased hydrostatic vascular pressure or from an increase in lung endothelial and epithelial permeability or both. Experimentally, extravascular lung water has been measured gravimetrically. Clinically, the chest radiograph is used to determine whether extravascular lung water is present but is an insensitive instrument for determining the quantity of lung water. Bedside measurement of extravascular lung water in patients is now possible using a single indicator thermodilution method. This review critically evaluates the experimental and clinical evidence supporting the potential value of measuring extravascular lung water in patients using the single indicator method. PMID:19617309

    15. Evaluating the potential of vegetation indices for winter wheat LAI estimation under different fertilization and water conditions

      NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

      Xie, Qiaoyun; Huang, Wenjiang; Dash, Jadunandan; Song, Xiaoyu; Huang, Linsheng; Zhao, Jinling; Wang, Renhong

      2015-12-01

      Leaf area index (LAI) is an important indicator for monitoring crop growth conditions and forecasting grain yield. Many algorithms have been developed for remote estimation of the leaf area index of vegetation, such as using spectral vegetation indices, inversion of radiative transfer models, and supervised learning techniques. Spectral vegetation indices, mathematical combination of reflectance bands, are widely used for LAI estimation due to their computational simplicity and their applications ranged from the leaf scale to the entire globe. However, in many cases, their applicability is limited to specific vegetation types or local conditions due to species specific nature of the relationship used to transfer the vegetation indices to LAI. The overall objective of this study is to investigate the most suitable vegetation index for estimating winter wheat LAI under eight different types of fertilizer and irrigation conditions. Regression models were used to estimate LAI using hyperspectral reflectance data from the Pushbroom Hyperspectral Imager (PHI) and in-situ measurements. Our results showed that, among six vegetation indices investigated, the modified soil-adjusted vegetation index (MSAVI) and the normalized difference vegetation index (NDVI) exhibited strong and significant relationships with LAI, and thus were sensitive across different nitrogen and water treatments. The modified triangular vegetation index (MTVI2) confirmed its potential on crop LAI estimation, although second to MSAVI and NDVI in our study. The enhanced vegetation index (EVI) showed moderate performance. However, the ratio vegetation index (RVI) and the modified simple ratio index (MSR) predicted the least accurate estimations of LAI, exposing the simple band ratio index's weakness under different treatment conditions. The results support the use of vegetation indices for a quick and effective LAI mapping procedure that is suitable for winter wheat under different management practices.

    16. Ecology of testate amoebae and their potential use as palaeohydrologic indicators from peatland in Sanjiang Plain, Northeast China

      NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

      Song, Lihong; Li, Hongkai; Wang, Kehong; Wu, Donghui; Wu, Haitao

      2014-12-01

      Testate amoebae are sensitive indicators of substrate moisture in peatlands. Over the last decades, they have been studied to reconstruct hydrological changes since the Holocene. However, these studies have been geographically restricted to North America and Europe. We conducted the first investigation of testate amoebae on the largest continental fresh water wetland in the Sanjiang Plain, China. The objectives of this study were to provide baseline data on the ecology of testate amoebae in the peatlands of Northeast China and to assess the potential of using them as environmental indicators in this ecosystem. We examined modern testate amoeba assemblages and species-environmental relationships at 46 microsites within 5 waterlogged depressions. The environmental parameters measured included: depth to water table, pH, and loss on ignition. The results showed that the dominant species were Trinema complanatum type, Euglypha rotunda type, Euglypha strigosa type, and Centropyxis cassis type. Redundancy analysis demonstrates that water table depth has the most important effect on testate amoeba assemblages, explaining 16.7% ( p = 0.002) of the total variance. pH was not a statistically significant factor for testate amoeba assemblages. Weighted averaging and weighted averaging partial least squares models were used to build transfer functions for depth to water table. The best performing transfer function was generated by the weighted averaging partial least squares model with an r 2 LOSO of 0.62 and RMSEPLOSO of 6.96 cm. Results indicate that testate amoebae in waterlogged depression peatland have the potential to be used as indicators for hydrological changes and for palaeohydrologic reconstructions in the Sanjiang Plain.

    17. Behavioral indicators of household decision-making and demand for sanitation and potential gains from social marketing in Ghana.

      PubMed

      Jenkins, Marion W; Scott, Beth

      2007-06-01

      Household demand for improved sanitation in developing countries is an important social and behavioral process with implications for public health, sanitation policy and planning, and sanitation design and technology development. This paper develops a behavioral approach to assess household demand for improved sanitation in Ghana. Adoption decision stages of preference, intention, and choice to install a toilet in Ghana are defined, measured in a survey, and used to estimate sanitation demand, identify factors affecting demand at each stage, and classify households by adoption stage to identify targeted demand-stimulation strategies. Results from a representative national sample of 536 households indicate that of 74% of households without any home sanitation, 31% have some likelihood of installing a toilet within the next year, but only 6% are very likely to do so; 62% had not considered the idea. Motivating and constraining factors are compared at each adoption stage and strategies likely to increase toilet installation in Ghana discussed. The approach is useful for assessing behavioral indicators of sanitation demand in developing countries and suggesting where marketing approaches can and cannot work to accelerate adoption of household sanitation improvements.

    18. Next-generation sequencing identifies high frequency of mutations in potentially clinically actionable genes in sebaceous carcinoma.

      PubMed

      Tetzlaff, Michael T; Singh, Rajesh R; Seviour, Elena G; Curry, Jonathan L; Hudgens, Courtney W; Bell, Diana; Wimmer, Daniel A; Ning, Jing; Czerniak, Bogdan A; Zhang, Li; Davies, Michael A; Prieto, Victor G; Broaddus, Russell R; Ram, Prahlad; Luthra, Rajyalakshmi; Esmaeli, Bita

      2016-09-01

      Sebaceous carcinoma (SC) is a rare but aggressive malignancy with frequent recurrence and metastases. Surgery is the mainstay of therapy, but effective systemic therapies are lacking because the molecular alterations driving SC remain poorly understood. To identify these, we performed whole-exome next-generation sequencing of 409 cancer-associated genes on 27 SCs (18 primary/locally recurrent ocular, 5 paired metastatic ocular, and 4 primary extraocular) from 20 patients. In ocular SC, we identified 139 non-synonymous somatic mutations (median/lesion 3; range 0-23). Twenty-five of 139 mutations (18%) occurred in potentially clinically actionable genes in 6 of 16 patients. The most common mutations were mutations in TP53 (n = 9), RB1 (n = 6), PIK3CA (n = 2), PTEN (n = 2), ERBB2 (n = 2), and NF1 (n = 2). TP53 and RB1 mutations were restricted to ocular SC and correlated with aberrant TP53 and RB protein expression. Systematic pathway analyses demonstrated convergence of these mutations to activation of the PI3K signalling cascade, and PI3K pathway activation was confirmed in tumours with PTEN and/or PIK3CA mutations. Considerable inter-tumoural heterogeneity was observed between paired primary and metastatic ocular SCs. In primary extraocular SC, we identified 77 non-synonymous somatic mutations (median/lesion 22.5; range 3-29). This overall higher mutational load was attributed to a microsatellite instability phenotype in three of four patients and somatically acquired mutations in mismatch repair genes in two of four patients. Eighteen of 77 mutations (23%) were in potentially clinically actionable genes in three of four patients, including BTK, FGFR2, PDGFRB, HRAS, and NF1 mutations. Identification of potentially clinically actionable mutations in 9 of 20 SC patients (45%) underscores the importance of next-generation sequencing to expand the spectrum of genotype-matched targeted therapies. Frequent activation of PI3K signalling pathways provides a strong

    19. Heat tolerance around flowering in wheat identified as a key trait for increased yield potential in Europe under climate change.

      PubMed

      Stratonovitch, Pierre; Semenov, Mikhail A

      2015-06-01

      To deliver food security for the 9 billon population in 2050, a 70% increase in world food supply will be required. Projected climatic and environmental changes emphasize the need for breeding strategies that delivers both a substantial increase in yield potential and resilience to extreme weather events such as heat waves, late frost, and drought. Heat stress around sensitive stages of wheat development has been identified as a possible threat to wheat production in Europe. However, no estimates have been made to assess yield losses due to increased frequency and magnitude of heat stress under climate change. Using existing experimental data, the Sirius wheat model was refined by incorporating the effects of extreme temperature during flowering and grain filling on accelerated leaf senescence, grain number, and grain weight. This allowed us, for the first time, to quantify yield losses resulting from heat stress under climate change. The model was used to optimize wheat ideotypes for CMIP5-based climate scenarios for 2050 at six sites in Europe with diverse climates. The yield potential for heat-tolerant ideotypes can be substantially increased in the future (e.g. by 80% at Seville, 100% at Debrecen) compared with the current cultivars by selecting an optimal combination of wheat traits, e.g. optimal phenology and extended duration of grain filling. However, at two sites, Seville and Debrecen, the grain yields of heat-sensitive ideotypes were substantially lower (by 54% and 16%) and more variable compared with heat-tolerant ideotypes, because the extended grain filling required for the increased yield potential was in conflict with episodes of high temperature during flowering and grain filling. Despite much earlier flowering at these sites, the risk of heat stress affecting yields of heat-sensitive ideotypes remained high. Therefore, heat tolerance in wheat is likely to become a key trait for increased yield potential and yield stability in southern Europe in the

    20. Heat tolerance around flowering in wheat identified as a key trait for increased yield potential in Europe under climate change

      PubMed Central

      Stratonovitch, Pierre; Semenov, Mikhail A.

      2015-01-01

      To deliver food security for the 9 billon population in 2050, a 70% increase in world food supply will be required. Projected climatic and environmental changes emphasize the need for breeding strategies that delivers both a substantial increase in yield potential and resilience to extreme weather events such as heat waves, late frost, and drought. Heat stress around sensitive stages of wheat development has been identified as a possible threat to wheat production in Europe. However, no estimates have been made to assess yield losses due to increased frequency and magnitude of heat stress under climate change. Using existing experimental data, the Sirius wheat model was refined by incorporating the effects of extreme temperature during flowering and grain filling on accelerated leaf senescence, grain number, and grain weight. This allowed us, for the first time, to quantify yield losses resulting from heat stress under climate change. The model was used to optimize wheat ideotypes for CMIP5-based climate scenarios for 2050 at six sites in Europe with diverse climates. The yield potential for heat-tolerant ideotypes can be substantially increased in the future (e.g. by 80% at Seville, 100% at Debrecen) compared with the current cultivars by selecting an optimal combination of wheat traits, e.g. optimal phenology and extended duration of grain filling. However, at two sites, Seville and Debrecen, the grain yields of heat-sensitive ideotypes were substantially lower (by 54% and 16%) and more variable compared with heat-tolerant ideotypes, because the extended grain filling required for the increased yield potential was in conflict with episodes of high temperature during flowering and grain filling. Despite much earlier flowering at these sites, the risk of heat stress affecting yields of heat-sensitive ideotypes remained high. Therefore, heat tolerance in wheat is likely to become a key trait for increased yield potential and yield stability in southern Europe in the

    1. Clinical Proteomics Identifies Urinary CD14 as a Potential Biomarker for Diagnosis of Stable Coronary Artery Disease

      PubMed Central

      Lee, Min-Yi; Huang, Chun-Hao; Kuo, Chao-Jen; Lin, Chen-Lung Steve; Lai, Wen-Ter; Chiou, Shyh-Horng

      2015-01-01

      Inflammation plays a key role in coronary artery disease (CAD) and other manifestations of atherosclerosis. Recently, urinary proteins were found to be useful markers for reflecting inflammation status of different organs. To identify potential biomarker for diagnosis of CAD, we performed one-dimensional SDS-gel electrophoresis followed by liquid chromatography coupled with tandem mass spectrometry (LC-MS/MS). Among the proteins differentially expressed in urine samples, monocyte antigen CD14 was found to be consistently expressed in higher amounts in the CAD patients as compared to normal controls. Using enzyme-linked immunosorbent assays to analyze the concentrations of CD14 in urine and serum, we confirmed that urinary CD14 levels were significantly higher in patients (n = 73) with multi-vessel and single vessel CAD than in normal control (n = 35) (P < 0.001). Logistic regression analysis further showed that urinary CD14 concentration level is associated with severity or number of diseased vessels and SYNTAX score after adjustment for potential confounders. Concomitantly, the proportion of CD14+ monocytes was significantly increased in CAD patients (59.7 ± 3.6%) as compared with healthy controls (14.9 ± 2.1%) (P < 0.001), implicating that a high level of urinary CD14 may be potentially involved in mechanism(s) leading to CAD pathogenesis. By performing shotgun proteomics, we further revealed that CD14-associated inflammatory response networks may play an essential role in CAD. In conclusion, the current study has demonstrated that release of CD14 in urine coupled with more CD14+ monocytes in CAD patients is significantly correlated with severity of CAD, pointing to the potential application of urinary CD14 as a novel noninvasive biomarker for large-scale diagnostic screening of susceptible CAD patients. PMID:25668619

    2. Profiling of the Tox21 Chemical Collection for Mitochondrial Function to Identify Compounds that Acutely Decrease Mitochondrial Membrane Potential

      PubMed Central

      Attene-Ramos, Matias S.; Huang, Ruili; Michael, Sam; Witt, Kristine L.; Richard, Ann; Tice, Raymond R.; Simeonov, Anton; Austin, Christopher P.

      2014-01-01

      Background: Mitochondrial dysfunction has been implicated in the pathogenesis of a variety of disorders including cancer, diabetes, and neurodegenerative and cardiovascular diseases. Understanding whether different environmental chemicals and druglike molecules impact mitochondrial function represents an initial step in predicting exposure-related toxicity and defining a possible role for such compounds in the onset of various diseases. Objectives: We sought to identify individual chemicals and general structural features associated with changes in mitochondrial membrane potential (MMP). Methods: We used a multiplexed [two end points in one screen; MMP and adenosine triphosphate (ATP) content] quantitative high throughput screening (qHTS) approach combined with informatics tools to screen the Tox21 library of 10,000 compounds (~ 8,300 unique chemicals) at 15 concentrations each in triplicate to identify chemicals and structural features that are associated with changes in MMP in HepG2 cells. Results: Approximately 11% of the compounds (913 unique compounds) decreased MMP after 1 hr of treatment without affecting cell viability (ATP content). In addition, 309 compounds decreased MMP over a concentration range that also produced measurable cytotoxicity [half maximal inhibitory concentration (IC50) in MMP assay/IC50 in viability assay ≤ 3; p < 0.05]. More than 11% of the structural clusters that constitute the Tox21 library (76 of 651 clusters) were significantly enriched for compounds that decreased the MMP. Conclusions: Our multiplexed qHTS approach allowed us to generate a robust and reliable data set to evaluate the ability of thousands of drugs and environmental compounds to decrease MMP. The use of structure-based clustering analysis allowed us to identify molecular features that are likely responsible for the observed activity. Citation: Attene-Ramos MS, Huang R, Michael S, Witt KL, Richard A, Tice RR, Simeonov A, Austin CP, Xia M. 2015. Profiling of the Tox

    3. Framework for identifying chemicals with structural features associated with the potential to act as developmental or reproductive toxicants.

      PubMed

      Wu, Shengde; Fisher, Joan; Naciff, Jorge; Laufersweiler, Michael; Lester, Cathy; Daston, George; Blackburn, Karen

      2013-12-16

      Developmental and reproductive toxicity (DART) end points are important hazard end points that need to be addressed in the risk assessment of chemicals to determine whether or not they are the critical effects in the overall risk assessment. These hazard end points are difficult to predict using current in silico tools because of the diversity of mechanisms of action that elicit DART effects and the potential for narrow windows of vulnerability. DART end points have been projected to consume the majority of animals used for compliance with REACH; thus, additional nonanimal predictive tools are urgently needed. This article presents an empirically based decision tree for determining whether or not a chemical has receptor-binding properties and structural features that are consistent with chemical structures known to have toxicity for DART end points. The decision tree is based on a detailed review of 716 chemicals (664 positive, 16 negative, and 36 with insufficient data) that have DART end-point data and are grouped into defined receptor binding and chemical domains. When tested against a group of chemicals not included in the training set, the decision tree is shown to identify a high percentage of chemicals with known DART effects. It is proposed that this decision tree could be used both as a component of a screening system to identify chemicals of potential concern and as a component of weight-of-evidence decisions based on structure-activity relationships (SAR) to fill data gaps without generating additional test data. In addition, the chemical groupings generated could be used as a starting point for the development of hypotheses for in vitro testing to elucidate mode of action and ultimately in the development of refined SAR principles for DART that incorporate mode of action (adverse outcome pathways).

    4. Planting sentinel European trees in eastern Asia as a novel method to identify potential insect pest invaders.

      PubMed

      Roques, Alain; Fan, Jian-Ting; Courtial, Béatrice; Zhang, Yan-Zhuo; Yart, Annie; Auger-Rozenberg, Marie-Anne; Denux, Olivier; Kenis, Marc; Baker, Richard; Sun, Jiang-Hua

      2015-01-01

      Quarantine measures to prevent insect invasions tend to focus on well-known pests but a large proportion of the recent invaders were not known to cause significant damage in their native range, or were not even known to science before their introduction. A novel method is proposed to detect new potential pests of woody plants in their region of origin before they are introduced to a new continent. Since Asia is currently considered to be the main supplier of insect invaders to Europe, sentinel trees were planted in China during 2007-2011 as an early warning tool to identify the potential for additional Asian insect species to colonize European trees. Seedlings (1-1.5 m tall) of five broadleaved (Quercus petraea, Q. suber, Q. ilex, Fagus sylvatica, and Carpinus betulus) and two conifer species (Abies alba and Cupressus sempervirens) were planted in blocks of 100 seedlings at two widely separated sites (one in a nursery near Beijing and the other in a forest environment near Fuyang in eastern China), and then regularly surveyed for colonization by insects. A total of 104 insect species, mostly defoliators, were observed on these new hosts, and at least six species were capable of larval development. Although a number of the insects observed were probably incidental feeders, 38 species had more than five colonization events, mostly infesting Q. petraea, and could be considered as being capable of switching to European trees if introduced to Europe. Three years was shown to be an appropriate duration for the experiment, since the rate of colonization then tended to plateau. A majority of the identified species appeared to have switched from agricultural crops and fruit trees rather than from forest trees. Although these results are promising, the method is not appropriate for xylophagous pests and other groups developing on larger trees. Apart from the logistical problems, the identification to species level of the specimens collected was a major difficulty. This

    5. A risk modelling approach for setting microbiological limits using enterococci as indicator for growth potential of Salmonella in pork.

      PubMed

      Bollerslev, Anne Mette; Nauta, Maarten; Hansen, Tina Beck; Aabo, Søren

      2017-01-02

      Microbiological limits are widely used in food processing as an aid to reduce the exposure to hazardous microorganisms for the consumers. However, in pork, the prevalence and concentrations of Salmonella are generally low and microbiological limits are not considered an efficient tool to support hygiene interventions. The objective of the present study was to develop an approach which could make it possible to define potential risk-based microbiological limits for an indicator, enterococci, in order to evaluate the risk from potential growth of Salmonella. A positive correlation between the concentration of enterococci and the prevalence and concentration of Salmonella was shown for 6640 pork samples taken at Danish cutting plants and retail butchers. The samples were collected in five different studies in 2001, 2002, 2010, 2011 and 2013. The observations that both Salmonella and enterococci are carried in the intestinal tract, contaminate pork by the same mechanisms and share similar growth characteristics (lag phase and maximum specific growth rate) at temperatures around 5-10°C, suggest a potential of enterococci to be used as an indicator of potential growth of Salmonella in pork. Elevated temperatures during processing will lead to growth of both enterococci and, if present, also Salmonella. By combining the correlation between enterococci and Salmonella with risk modelling, it is possible to predict the risk of salmonellosis based on the level of enterococci. The risk model used for this purpose includes the dose-response relationship for Salmonella and a reduction factor to account for preparation of the fresh pork. By use of the risk model, it was estimated that the majority of salmonellosis cases, caused by the consumption of pork in Denmark, is caused by the small fraction of pork products that has enterococci concentrations above 5logCFU/g. This illustrates that our approach can be used to evaluate the potential effect of different microbiological

    6. Leaching of Zinc Sulfide by Thiobacillus ferrooxidans: Experiments with a Controlled Redox Potential Indicate No Direct Bacterial Mechanism

      PubMed Central

      Fowler, T. A.; Crundwell, F. K.

      1998-01-01

      The role of Thiobacillus ferrooxidans in bacterial leaching of mineral sulfides is controversial. Much of the controversy is due to the fact that the solution conditions, especially the concentrations of ferric and ferrous ions, change during experiments. The role of the bacteria would be more easily discernible if the concentrations of ferric and ferrous ions were maintained at set values throughout the experimental period. In this paper we report results obtained by using the constant redox potential apparatus described previously (P. I. Harvey and F. K. Crundwell, Appl. Environ. Microbiol. 63:2586–2592, 1997). This apparatus is designed to control the redox potential in the leaching compartment of an electrolytic cell by reduction or oxidation of dissolved iron. By controlling the redox potential the apparatus maintains the concentrations of ferrous and ferric ions at their initial values. Experiments were conducted in the presence of T. ferrooxidans and under sterile conditions. Analysis of the conversion of zinc sulfide in the absence of the bacteria and analysis of the conversion of zinc sulfate in the presence of the bacteria produced the same results. This indicates that the only role of the bacteria under the conditions used is regeneration of ferric ions in solution. In this work we found no evidence that there is a direct mechanism for bacterial leaching. PMID:9758769

    7. Chemical reactivity indices and mechanism-based read-across for non-animal based assessment of skin sensitisation potential.

      PubMed

      Roberts, David W; Aptula, Aynur O; Patlewicz, Grace; Pease, Camilla

      2008-05-01

      The skin sensitisation potential of chemicals is currently assessed using in vivo methods where the murine local lymph node assay (LLNA) is typically the method of first choice. Current regulatory initiatives are driving the impetus for the use of in vitro/in silico alternative approaches to provide the relevant information needed for the effective assessment of skin sensitisation, for both hazard characterisation and risk assessment purposes. A chemical must undergo a number of steps for it to induce skin sensitisation but the main determining step is formation of a stable covalent association with carrier protein. The ability of a chemical to react covalently with carrier protein nucleophiles relates to both its electrophilic reactivity and its hydrophobicity. This paper focuses on quantitative indices of electrophilic reactivity with nucleophiles, in a chemical mechanism-of-action context, and compares and contrasts the experimental approaches available to generate reactivity data that are suitable for mathematical modelling and making predictions of skin sensitisation potential, using new chemistry data correlated against existing in vivo bioassay data. As such, the paper goes on to describe an illustrative example of how quantitative kinetic measures of reactivity can be usefully and simply applied to perform mechanism-based read-across that enables hazard characterisation of skin sensitisation potential. An illustration of the types of quantitative mechanistic models that could be built using databases of kinetic measures of reactivity, hydrophobicity and existing in vivo bioassay data is also given.

    8. Assessment of the extended Koopmans' theorem for the chemical reactivity: Accurate computations of chemical potentials, chemical hardnesses, and electrophilicity indices.

      PubMed

      Yildiz, Dilan; Bozkaya, Uğur

      2016-01-30

      The extended Koopmans' theorem (EKT) provides a straightforward way to compute ionization potentials and electron affinities from any level of theory. Although it is widely applied to ionization potentials, the EKT approach has not been applied to evaluation of the chemical reactivity. We present the first benchmarking study to investigate the performance of the EKT methods for predictions of chemical potentials (μ) (hence electronegativities), chemical hardnesses (η), and electrophilicity indices (ω). We assess the performance of the EKT approaches for post-Hartree-Fock methods, such as Møller-Plesset perturbation theory, the coupled-electron pair theory, and their orbital-optimized counterparts for the evaluation of the chemical reactivity. Especially, results of the orbital-optimized coupled-electron pair theory method (with the aug-cc-pVQZ basis set) for predictions of the chemical reactivity are very promising; the corresponding mean absolute errors are 0.16, 0.28, and 0.09 eV for μ, η, and ω, respectively.

    9. Single-sweep spectral analysis of contact heat evoked potentials: a novel approach to identify altered cortical processing after morphine treatment

      PubMed Central

      Hansen, Tine M; Graversen, Carina; Frøkjær, Jens B; Olesen, Anne E; Valeriani, Massimiliano; Drewes, Asbjørn M

      2015-01-01

      Aims The cortical response to nociceptive thermal stimuli recorded as contact heat evoked potentials (CHEPs) may be altered by morphine. However, previous studies have averaged CHEPs over multiple stimuli, which are confounded by jitter between sweeps. Thus, the aim was to assess single-sweep characteristics to identify alterations induced by morphine. Methods In a crossover study 15 single-sweep CHEPs were analyzed from 62 electroencephalography electrodes in 26 healthy volunteers before and after administration of morphine or placebo. Each sweep was decomposed by a continuous wavelet transform to obtain normalized spectral indices in the delta (0.5–4 Hz), theta (4–8 Hz), alpha (8–12 Hz), beta (12–32 Hz) and gamma (32–80 Hz) bands. The average distribution over all sweeps and channels was calculated for the four recordings for each volunteer, and the two recordings before treatments were assessed for reproducibility. Baseline corrected spectral indices after morphine and placebo treatments were compared to identify alterations induced by morphine. Results Reproducibility between baseline CHEPs was demonstrated. As compared with placebo, morphine decreased the spectral indices in the delta and theta bands by 13% (P = 0.04) and 9% (P = 0.007), while the beta and gamma bands were increased by 10% (P = 0.006) and 24% (P = 0.04). Conclusion The decreases in the delta and theta band are suggested to represent a decrease in the pain specific morphology of the CHEPs, which indicates a diminished pain response after morphine administration. Hence, assessment of spectral indices in single-sweep CHEPs can be used to study cortical mechanisms induced by morphine treatment. PMID:25556985

    10. Disappointing reliability of pulsatility indices to identify candidates for magnetic resonance imaging screening in population-based studies assessing prevalence of cerebral small vessel disease

      PubMed Central

      Del Brutto, Oscar H.; Mera, Robertino M.; Andrade, María de la Luz; Castillo, Pablo R.; Zambrano, Mauricio; Nader, Juan A.

      2015-01-01

      Background: Diagnosis of cerebral small vessel disease (SVD) is a challenge in remote areas where magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) is not available. Hospital-based studies in high-risk or stroke patients have found an association between the pulsatility index (PI) of intracranial arteries – as derived from transcranial Doppler (TCD) – and white matter hyperintensities (WMH) of presumed vascular origin. We aimed to assess the reliability of cerebral pulsatility indices to identify candidates for MRI screening in population-based studies assessing prevalence of SVD. Methods: A representative sample of stroke-free Atahualpa residents aged ≥65 years investigated with MRI underwent TCD. Using generalized linear models, we evaluated whether the PI of major intracranial arteries correlate with WMH (used as a proxy of diffuse SVD), after adjusting for demographics and cardiovascular risk factors. Results: Out of 70 participants (mean age 70.6 ± 4.6 years, 57% women), 28 (40%) had moderate-to-severe WMH. In multivariate models, there were no differences across categories of WMH in the mean PI of middle cerebral arteries (1.10 ± 0.16 vs. 1.22 ± 0.24, β: 0.065, 95% confidence interval (CI): −0.084–0.177, P = 0.474) or vertebrobasilar arteries (1.11 ± 0.16 vs. 1.29 ± 0.27, β: 0.066, 95% CI: −0.0024–0.156, P = 0.146). Conclusions: Cerebral PI should not be used to identify candidates for MRI screening in population-based studies assessing the burden of SVD. PMID:26167015

    11. Effect of arsenic on p53 mutation and occurrence of teratogenic salamanders: their potential as ecological indicators for arsenic contamination.

      PubMed

      Chang, Jin-Soo; Gu, Man Bock; Kim, Kyoung-Woong

      2009-05-01

      The p53 mutation in salamanders can be used as an indicator of arsenic contamination. The influence of arsenic exposure was studied on mutation of tumor suppressor gene in salamanders collected from several As-contaminated mine areas in Korea. Salamander eggs and larvae were exposed to arsenic in a toxicity test, and teratogenic salamanders found in heavy metal- and As-contaminated water from As-Bi mines were evaluated using PCR-SSCP to determine if they would be useful as an ecological indicator species. Changes in amino acids were shown to have occurred as a result of an arsenic-accumulating event that occurred after the DNA damage. In addition, both of the Hynobius leechii exposed groups were primarily affected by forms of skin damage, changes in the lateral tail/dorsal flexure and/or abnormality teratogenesis. Single-base sense mutation in codons 346 (AAG: Lys to ATG: Met), 224 (TTT: Phe to TTA: Leu), 211 (ATG: Met to AAG: Lys), 244 (TTT: Phe to TTTG: insertion), 245 (Glu GAG to Gln CAG) and 249 (TGT Cys to TGA stop) of the p53 gene were simultaneously found in mutated salamanders. Based on the results of our data illustrating the effect of arsenic exposure on the p53 mutation of salamanders in arsenic-contaminated mine areas, these mutated salamanders can be used as potential ecological indicators in the arsenic-contaminated ecosystems.

    12. Integrated analysis of genome-wide DNA methylation and gene expression profiles identifies potential novel biomarkers of rectal cancer