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Sample records for identifying potential environmental

  1. 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.

  2. 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

  3. Gene expression profiling to identify the toxicities and potentially relevant human disease outcomes associated with environmental heavy metal exposure.

    PubMed

    Korashy, Hesham M; Attafi, Ibraheem M; Famulski, Konrad S; Bakheet, Saleh A; Hafez, Mohammed M; Alsaad, Abdulaziz M S; Al-Ghadeer, Abdul Rahman M

    2017-02-01

    Heavy metals are the most commonly encountered toxic substances that increase susceptibility to various diseases after prolonged exposure. We have previously shown that healthy volunteers living near a mining area had significant contamination with heavy metals associated with significant changes in the expression of some detoxifying genes, xenobiotic metabolizing enzymes, and DNA repair genes. However, alterations of most of the molecular target genes associated with diseases are still unknown. Thus, the aims of this study were to (a) evaluate the gene expression profile and (b) identify the toxicities and potentially relevant human disease outcomes associated with long-term human exposure to environmental heavy metals in mining area using microarray analysis. For this purpose, 40 healthy male volunteers who were residents of a heavy metal-polluted area (Mahd Al-Dhahab city, Saudi Arabia) and 20 healthy male volunteers who were residents of a non-heavy metal-polluted area were included in the study. Total RNA was isolated from whole blood using PAXgene Blood RNA tubes and then reversed transcribed and hybridized to the gene array using the Affymetrix U219 GeneChip. Microarray analysis showed about 2129 genes were identified and differentially altered, among which a shared set of 425 genes was differentially expressed in the heavy metal-exposed groups. Ingenuity pathway analysis revealed that the most altered gene-regulated diseases in heavy metal-exposed groups included hematological and developmental disorders and mostly renal and urological diseases. Quantitative real-time polymerase chain reaction closely matched the microarray data for some genes tested. Importantly, changes in gene-related diseases were attributed to alterations in the genes encoded for protein synthesis. Renal and urological diseases were the diseases that were most frequently associated with the heavy metal-exposed group. Therefore, there is a need for further studies to validate these

  4. 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.

  5. Identifying potential areas for biofuel production and evaluating the environmental effects: a case study of the James River Basin in the Midwestern United States

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Wu, Yiping; Liu, Shu-Guang; Li, Zhengpeng

    2012-01-01

    Biofuels are now an important resource in the United States because of the Energy Independence and Security Act of 2007. Both increased corn growth for ethanol production and perennial dedicated energy crop growth for cellulosic feedstocks are potential sources to meet the rising demand for biofuels. However, these measures may cause adverse environmental consequences that are not yet fully understood. This study 1) evaluates the long-term impacts of increased frequency of corn in the crop rotation system on water quantity and quality as well as soil fertility in the James River Basin and 2) identifies potential grasslands for cultivating bioenergy crops (e.g. switchgrass), estimating the water quality impacts. We selected the soil and water assessment tool, a physically based multidisciplinary model, as the modeling approach to simulate a series of biofuel production scenarios involving crop rotation and land cover changes. The model simulations with different crop rotation scenarios indicate that decreases in water yield and soil nitrate nitrogen (NO3-N) concentration along with an increase in NO3-N load to stream water could justify serious concerns regarding increased corn rotations in this basin. Simulations with land cover change scenarios helped us spatially classify the grasslands in terms of biomass productivity and nitrogen loads, and we further derived the relationship of biomass production targets and the resulting nitrogen loads against switchgrass planting acreages. The suggested economically efficient (planting acreage) and environmentally friendly (water quality) planting locations and acreages can be a valuable guide for cultivating switchgrass in this basin. This information, along with the projected environmental costs (i.e. reduced water yield and increased nitrogen load), can contribute to decision support tools for land managers to seek the sustainability of biofuel development in this region.

  6. Identifying environmental correlates of intraspecific genetic variation.

    PubMed

    Harrisson, K A; Yen, J D L; Pavlova, A; Rourke, M L; Gilligan, D; Ingram, B A; Lyon, J; Tonkin, Z; Sunnucks, P

    2016-09-01

    Genetic variation is critical to the persistence of populations and their capacity to adapt to environmental change. The distribution of genetic variation across a species' range can reveal critical information that is not necessarily represented in species occurrence or abundance patterns. We identified environmental factors associated with the amount of intraspecific, individual-based genetic variation across the range of a widespread freshwater fish species, the Murray cod Maccullochella peelii. We used two different approaches to statistically quantify the relative importance of predictor variables, allowing for nonlinear relationships: a random forest model and a Bayesian approach. The latter also accounted for population history. Both approaches identified associations between homozygosity by locus and both disturbance to the natural flow regime and mean annual flow. Homozygosity by locus was negatively associated with disturbance to the natural flow regime, suggesting that river reaches with more disturbed flow regimes may support larger, more genetically diverse populations. Our findings are consistent with the hypothesis that artificially induced perennial flows in regulated channels may provide greater and more consistent habitat and reduce the frequency of population bottlenecks that can occur frequently under the highly variable and unpredictable natural flow regime of the system. Although extensive river regulation across eastern Australia has not had an overall positive effect on Murray cod numbers over the past century, regulation may not represent the primary threat to Murray cod survival. Instead, pressures other than flow regulation may be more critical to the persistence of Murray cod (for example, reduced frequency of large floods, overfishing and chemical pollution).

  7. 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.

  8. Identifying environmental sounds: a multimodal mapping study

    PubMed Central

    Tomasino, Barbara; Canderan, Cinzia; Marin, Dario; Maieron, Marta; Gremese, Michele; D'Agostini, Serena; Fabbro, Franco; Skrap, Miran

    2015-01-01

    Our environment is full of auditory events such as warnings or hazards, and their correct recognition is essential. We explored environmental sounds (ES) recognition in a series of studies. In study 1 we performed an Activation Likelihood Estimation (ALE) meta-analysis of neuroimaging experiments addressing ES processing to delineate the network of areas consistently involved in ES processing. Areas consistently activated in the ALE meta-analysis were the STG/MTG, insula/rolandic operculum, parahippocampal gyrus and inferior frontal gyrus bilaterally. Some of these areas truly reflect ES processing, whereas others are related to design choices, e.g., type of task, type of control condition, type of stimulus. In study 2 we report on 7 neurosurgical patients with lesions involving the areas which were found to be activated by the ALE meta-analysis. We tested their ES recognition abilities and found an impairment of ES recognition. These results indicate that deficits of ES recognition do not exclusively reflect lesions to the right or to the left hemisphere but both hemispheres are involved. The most frequently lesioned area is the hippocampus/insula/STG. We made sure that any impairment in ES recognition would not be related to language problems, but reflect impaired ES processing. In study 3 we carried out an fMRI study on patients (vs. healthy controls) to investigate how the areas involved in ES might be functionally deregulated because of a lesion. The fMRI evidenced that controls activated the right IFG, the STG bilaterally and the left insula. We applied a multimodal mapping approach and found that, although the meta-analysis showed that part of the left and right STG/MTG activation during ES processing might in part be related to design choices, this area was one of the most frequently lesioned areas in our patients, thus highlighting its causal role in ES processing. We found that the ROIs we drew on the two clusters of activation found in the left and in

  9. 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…

  10. A procedure for identifying significant environmental aspects in sea ports.

    PubMed

    Darbra, R M; Ronza, A; Stojanovic, T A; Wooldridge, C; Casal, J

    2005-08-01

    A new methodology has been designed to identify and rank the significant environmental aspects in sea ports. The main objective of the Strategic Overview of Significant Environmental Aspects (SOSEA) is to help port managers to identify significant environmental aspects and to reinforce the awareness about them in order to prioritise work in environmental management. Developed in close collaboration with port environmental managers and tested in a set of ports, it is a user-friendly tool that can be applied in approximately half a working day. It is based on ISO 14001 vocabulary and requirements and it can be considered as the base for the implementation of any Environmental Management System for port communities.

  11. Identifying Environmental Contributions to Autism: Provocative Clues and False Leads

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Lawler, Cindy P.; Croen, Lisa A.; Grether, Judith K.; Van de Water, Judy

    2004-01-01

    The potential role of environmental factors in autism spectrum disorders (ASD) is an area of emerging interest within the public and scientific communities. The high degree of heritability of ASD suggests that environmental influences are likely to operate through their interaction with genetic susceptibility during vulnerable periods of…

  12. Using Environmental Correlations to Identify Loci Underlying Local Adaptation

    PubMed Central

    Coop, Graham; Witonsky, David; Di Rienzo, Anna; Pritchard, Jonathan K.

    2010-01-01

    Loci involved in local adaptation can potentially be identified by an unusual correlation between allele frequencies and important ecological variables or by extreme allele frequency differences between geographic regions. However, such comparisons are complicated by differences in sample sizes and the neutral correlation of allele frequencies across populations due to shared history and gene flow. To overcome these difficulties, we have developed a Bayesian method that estimates the empirical pattern of covariance in allele frequencies between populations from a set of markers and then uses this as a null model for a test at individual SNPs. In our model the sample frequencies of an allele across populations are drawn from a set of underlying population frequencies; a transform of these population frequencies is assumed to follow a multivariate normal distribution. We first estimate the covariance matrix of this multivariate normal across loci using a Monte Carlo Markov chain. At each SNP, we then provide a measure of the support, a Bayes factor, for a model where an environmental variable has a linear effect on the transformed allele frequencies compared to a model given by the covariance matrix alone. This test is shown through power simulations to outperform existing correlation tests. We also demonstrate that our method can be used to identify SNPs with unusually large allele frequency differentiation and offers a powerful alternative to tests based on pairwise or global FST. Software is available at http://www.eve.ucdavis.edu/gmcoop/. PMID:20516501

  13. Environmental Perchlorate Exposure: Potential Adverse Thyroid Effects

    PubMed Central

    Leung, Angela M.; Pearce, Elizabeth N.; Braverman, Lewis E.

    2014-01-01

    Purpose of review This review will present a general overview of the sources, human studies, and proposed regulatory action regarding environmental perchlorate exposure. Recent findings Some recent studies have reported significant associations between urinary perchlorate concentrations, thyroid dysfunction, and decreased infant IQ in groups who would be particularly susceptible to perchlorate effects. An update regarding the recent proposed regulatory actions and potential costs surrounding amelioration of perchlorate contamination is provided. Summary The potential adverse thyroidal effects of environmental perchlorate exposure remain controversial, and further research is needed to further define its relationship to human health among pregnant and lactating women and their infants. PMID:25106002

  14. Potential environmental implications of nanoscale zero-valent iron particles for environmental remediation

    PubMed Central

    Jang, Min-Hee; Lim, Myunghee; Hwang, Yu Sik

    2014-01-01

    Objectives Nanoscale zero-valent iron (nZVI) particles are widely used in the field of various environmental contaminant remediation. Although the potential benefits of nZVI are considerable, there is a distinct need to identify any potential risks after environmental exposure. In this respect, we review recent studies on the environmental applications and implications of nZVI, highlighting research gaps and suggesting future research directions. Methods Environmental application of nZVI is briefly summarized, focusing on its unique properties. Ecotoxicity of nZVI is reviewed according to type of organism, including bacteria, terrestrial organisms, and aquatic organisms. The environmental fate and transport of nZVI are also summarized with regards to exposure scenarios. Finally, the current limitations of risk determination are thoroughly provided. Results The ecotoxicity of nZVI depends on the composition, concentration, size and surface properties of the nanoparticles and the experimental method used, including the species investigated. In addition, the environmental fate and transport of nZVI appear to be complex and depend on the exposure duration and the exposure conditions. To date, field-scale data are limited and only short-term studies using simple exposure methods have been conducted. Conclusions In this regard, the primary focus of future study should be on 1) the development of an appropriate and valid testing method of the environmental fate and ecotoxicity of reactive nanoparticles used in environmental applications and 2) assessing their potential environmental risks using in situ field scale applications. PMID:25518840

  15. 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.

  16. Potential environmental effects of energy conservation measures in northwest industries

    SciTech Connect

    Baechler, M C; Gygi, K F; Hendrickson, P L

    1992-01-01

    The Bonneville Power Administration (Bonneville) has identified 101 plants in the Pacific Northwest that account for 80% of the region's industrial electricity consumption. These plants offer a precise target for a conservation program. PNL determined that most of these 101 plants were represented by 11 major industries. We then reviewed 36 major conservation technologies used in these 11 industrial settings to determine their potential environmental impacts. Energy efficiency technologies designed for industrial use may result in direct or indirect environmental impacts. Effects may result from the production of the conservation measure technology, changes in the working environment due to different energy and material requirements, or changes to waste streams. Industry type, work-place conditions, worker training, and environmental conditions inside and outside the plant are all key variables that may affect environmental outcomes. To address these issues this report has three objectives: Describe potential conservation measures that Bonneville may employ in industrial programs and discuss potential primary impacts. Characterize industrial systems and processes where the measure may be employed and describe general environmental issues associated with each industry type. Review environmental permitting, licensing, and other regulatory actions required for industries and summarize the type of information available from these sources for further analysis.

  17. Potential environmental problems of photovoltaic energy technology

    SciTech Connect

    Hendrey, G.R.; Moskowitz, P.D.; Patten, D.; Berry, W.; Conway, H.L.

    1980-01-01

    Separate abstracts were prepared for the ten papers of this proceedings of a workshop held at Brookhaven National Laboratory in 1980. The purposes of this proceedings are to provide a preliminary identificaton and assessment of environmental hazards which might be realistically associated with growth of the photovoltaic industry, and to provide a reference for environmental considerations by obtaining a 1980 state-of-the-art assessment of growth anticipated for the industry. Currently the industry is considered to be in the early stages of development and several possible technological options are available for large-scale manufacturing as the industry grows. Estimates of the industrial emissions of materials considered to be potentially harmful in the environment were obtained by several different analytical methods. (KRM)

  18. A screening approach for identifying environmental justice issues in environmental impact statements

    SciTech Connect

    Schexnayder, S.S.

    1995-12-01

    Executive Order 12898 and the accompanying memorandum addressed to Federal agency heads, both issued on February 11, 1994, require NEPA processes to incorporate environmental justice. The NEPA processes affected are: (1) public involvement formats, (2) analyses of potential impacts. The Executive Order clearly indicates that research strategies and mitigation measure should be developed with the input of the populations mentioned in the Executive Order, i.e., minority and low-income populations. However, an enhanced public involvement process may not occur because the NEPA activity may have been underway before the Executive Order was issued or because the agency chooses not to change traditional public participation mechanisms. It is also possible that enhanced mechanisms may not effectively elicit involvement. In either case, analysis that considers environmental justice must proceed. These analyses could be highly data-intensive--requiring new or modified methodological approaches-- and time-intensive, particularly if the process elements of the executive order are interpreted broadly, Federal agencies and NEPA project managers already have expressed concern about the potential cost of conducting exhaustive environmental justice related analyses where they may not be warranted. Also, the time and resources required to conduct a full environmental justice analysis is counter to recent trends to streamline the NEPA process. In light of this, a process to screen for indicators of the potential for environmental justice issues has been developed. The method incorporates separate screens for human health impacts, socioeconomic impacts, and social structural impacts. Positive results of any screen indicates the need for full-scale, environmental-justice-related analysis of that category of impact. The screen is intended as a useful tool in implementing environmental justice in environmental impact statements.

  19. 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.

  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. Development of a GIS for environmental assessment incorporating known potential environmental hazards and remote sensing

    SciTech Connect

    Shaffer, D.L.; Roth, M.J.S.; Ruggles, R.

    1996-12-31

    The development of a Geographic Information System (GIS) application to evaluate potential environmental hazards within the Bushkill watershed in Northampton County, Pennsylvania, is described by the authors. Information identifying hazardous materials used by businesses within the watershed was obtained from databases of the Environmental Protection Agency. These databases were supplemented and updated by visual reconnaissance and by a review of current tax maps, zoning information and aerial photographs. Information regarding the use or storage of substances considered hazardous was collected from various agencies as well as any known violations of environmental regulations by the businesses. Geographic information including remotely sensed data and maps of surface water bodies, geology and soil types was also obtained for the study area. A GIS was used to integrate the geographic information with the hazardous substance database resulting in a tool for use in environmental site assessments, planning for subsequent site characterization, and for environmental educational purposes.

  2. Characterizing the Estrogenic Potential of 1060 Environmental ...

    EPA Pesticide Factsheets

    In order to detect environmental chemicals that pose a risk of endocrine disruption, high-throughput screening (HTS) tests capable of testing thousands of environmental chemicals are needed. Alteration of estrogen signaling has been implicated in a variety of adverse health effects including cancer promotion, reproductive deficits, and vascular effects. Here we investigate the estrogenic potential of 1060 chemicals of environmental relevance using a real-time measure of growth kinetics by electrode impedance in the estrogen-responsive human ductal carcinoma, T47D cell line. Cells were treated in concentration response and measurements of cellular impedance were recorded every hour for six days. Progestens, androgens, and mineralocortocoids (progesterone, dihydrotestosterone, aldosterone) invoked a biphasic impedance signature that contrasted with the anticipated exponential impedance observed in response to known estrogen receptor agonists (17β-estradiol, genestein, bisphenol-A, nonylphenol, 4-tert-octylphenol). Several compounds, including bisphenol-A, and genestein caused impedance comparable to that of 17β-estradiol, although at much higher concentrations. Additionally, trenbolone and cyproterone acetate invoked the characteristic biphasic signature observed with other endogenous steroid hormones. The continuous real-time nature of this assay allows for the rapid detection of differential growth characteristics not easily detected by traditional cell prol

  3. Potential environmental impacts of future halocarbon emissions

    SciTech Connect

    Holmes, K.J.; Ellis, J.H.

    1996-08-01

    An integrated analysis of future halocarbon emissions and their environmental impacts shows that strict global compliance is required if the Montreal Protocol is to accomplish the goal of eliminating the lower stratospheric ozone hole. This analysis is integrated in the sense that demographic, economic, and regulatory processes controlling future production were linked explicitly to the technological factors translating production into emissions and the environmental processes transforming emissions into environmental impacts. Given current models of halocarbon transformation and atmospheric response, this research suggests that if a small percentage of nations continues to expand production at modest rates, the ozone hole will not be eliminated. In addition, high growth rate assumptions for halocarbon production by noncompliance nations will result in significantly increased ozone depletion. This research also shows that the continued use of small amounts of ozone-depleting substances for essential uses and the failure to adequately replace all ozone-depleting substances can eliminate the possibility of returning the atmosphere to pre-ozone hole conditions. The global climate change potential of halocarbons is fairly small if growth rates for chlorofluorocarbon substitutes remain low. If growth rates return to precontrol levels, these substitutes could contribute significantly to global climate change. 41 refs., 3 figs., 3 tabs.

  4. Identifying ontogenetic, environmental and individual components of forest tree growth

    PubMed Central

    Chaubert-Pereira, Florence; Caraglio, Yves; Lavergne, Christian; Guédon, Yann

    2009-01-01

    Background and Aims This study aimed to identify and characterize the ontogenetic, environmental and individual components of forest tree growth. In the proposed approach, the tree growth data typically correspond to the retrospective measurement of annual shoot characteristics (e.g. length) along the trunk. Methods Dedicated statistical models (semi-Markov switching linear mixed models) were applied to data sets of Corsican pine and sessile oak. In the semi-Markov switching linear mixed models estimated from these data sets, the underlying semi-Markov chain represents both the succession of growth phases and their lengths, while the linear mixed models represent both the influence of climatic factors and the inter-individual heterogeneity within each growth phase. Key Results On the basis of these integrative statistical models, it is shown that growth phases are not only defined by average growth level but also by growth fluctuation amplitudes in response to climatic factors and inter-individual heterogeneity and that the individual tree status within the population may change between phases. Species plasticity affected the response to climatic factors while tree origin, sampling strategy and silvicultural interventions impacted inter-individual heterogeneity. Conclusions The transposition of the proposed integrative statistical modelling approach to cambial growth in relation to climatic factors and the study of the relationship between apical growth and cambial growth constitute the next steps in this research. PMID:19684021

  5. 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.

  6. 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

  7. Identifying environmental safety and health requirements for an Environmental Restoration Management Contractor

    SciTech Connect

    Beckman, W.H.; Cossel, S.C.; Alhadeff, N.; Porco, D.J.; Lindamood, S.B.; Beers, J.A.

    1993-10-01

    The purpose of the Standards/Requirements Identification Program, developed partially in response to the Defense Nuclear Facilities Safety Board Recommendation 90-2, was to identify applicable requirements that established the Environmental Restoration Management Contractor`s (ERMC) responsibilities and authorities under the Environmental Restoration Management Contract, determine the adequacy of these requirements, ascertain a baseline level of compliance with them, and implement a maintenance program that would keep the program current as requirements or compliance levels change. The resultant Standards/Requirements Identification Documents (S/RIDs) consolidate the applicable requirements. These documents govern the development of procedures and manuals to ensure compliance with the requirements. Twenty-four such documents, corresponding with each functional area identified at the site, are to be issued. These requirements are included in the contractor`s management plan.

  8. 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

  9. 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.

  10. 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.

  11. 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.

  12. OXPHOS-Dependent Cells Identify Environmental Disruptors of Mitochondrial Function

    EPA Science Inventory

    Mitochondrial dysfunction is associated with numerous chronic diseases including metabolic syndrome. Environmental chemicals can impair mitochondrial function through numerous mechanisms such as membrane disruption, complex inhibition and electron transport chain uncoupling. Curr...

  13. 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.

  14. Identifying Deficiencies in the Environmental Chemistry Educational Literature

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hoa Tran, Thi; Bigger, Stephen W.; Kruger, Tony; Orbell, John D.; Buddhadasa, Saman; Barone, Sebastian

    2001-12-01

    Saman Buddhadasa and Sebastian Barone Australian Government Analytical Laboratories, South Melbourne, Victoria 3205, Australia A survey of environmental chemistry laboratory experiments published during the period 1969-2000 in the mainstream chemical education journals, The Journal of Chemical Education and Education in Chemistry, was conducted. The experiments were categorized as being related to the environmental domains of air, water, or soil. Using the same timeframe, a similar survey was carried out for commonly used environmental chemistry textbooks, assessing the relative number of pages devoted to the same areas. The data obtained from both analyses indicate that the area of soil is seriously underrepresented in the environmental chemistry educational literature. This suggests a need to develop more environmental chemistry educational material (in the form of published laboratory experiments and textbook material) related to soil chemistry and soil contamination. To provide a basis for optimizing the level of integration in the design of such experiments, the publications surveyed were categorized according to how they integrate the four traditional subfields of chemistry --organic, inorganic, physical, and analytical.

  15. Potential Environmental Factors in Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis

    PubMed Central

    Oskarsson, Björn; Horton, D. Kevin; Mitsumoto, Hiroshi

    2015-01-01

    Summary The current state of research in environmental risk factors of ALS has provided many intriguing possible associations. Yet only one-smoking is at this time firmly established. The methodologic difficulties with studying a rare disease that occurs late in life, which could be related to exposures many decades ago, make relationships dauntingly difficult to prove. Despite continued improvement in methodology, significant challenges remain. The diagnostic criteria for ALS are complicated and there are continued efforts to improve them. As they are, the criteria do not yet capture all people with ALS, which further complicates epidemiologic studies. It is hoped that larger datasets with better characterization of different clinical features and laboratory markers will provide more robust estimates of risk factors in ALS in the years to come. A better understanding of environmental risk factors could help reduce exposures and it is hoped markedly reduce ALS incidence over time. Epidemiologic research is critical to advance this field, but the relative rarity of ALS and the current notion that exposures may affect the risk of ALS only decades later make such projects complex with many challenges. One US project of great potential is the National ALS Registry. It is a congressionally-mandated prospective population-based registry encompassing the entire US population. In addition to quantifying the incidence, prevalence, and demographics of ALS in the US, another main goal of the Registry is to examine the risk factors for the disease through online risk factor modules. There are currently 17 different risk factor modules that persons with ALS can complete including, but not limited to, cigarette smoking, alcohol consumption, military service history, occupational history, and a family history of ALS. Since the Registry's launch in October 2010, over 45,000 online risk factor modules have been completed. To our knowledge, this is the largest and most

  16. Potential effects of environmental regulatory procedures on geothermal development

    SciTech Connect

    Beeland, G.V.; Boies, D.B.

    1981-01-01

    The potential effects of several types of applicable environmental regulatory procedures on geothermal development were assessed, and particular problem areas were identified. The possible impact of procedures adopted pursuant to the following Federal statutes were analyzed: Clean Air Act; Clean Water Act; Safe Drinking Water Act; and Resource Conservation and Recovery Act. State regulations applicable, or potentially applicable, to geothermal facilities were also reviewed to determine: permit information requirements; pre-permit air or water quality monitoring requirements; effect of mandated time frames for permit approval; and potential for exemption of small facilities. The regulations of the following states were covered in the review: Alaska; Arizona; California; Colorado; Hawaii; Idaho; Montana; Nevada; New Mexico; Oregon; Utah; Washington; and Wyoming. (MHR)

  17. Assessing potential future environmental legal events

    SciTech Connect

    Tonn, B.; Petrich, C.

    1997-10-28

    This report addresses the topic of environmental citizenship in the United States. The term refers to responsibilities each of us have with respect to helping our communities and nation make sound environmental decisions. This research centers on the citizens and what we ought to be doing, as opposed to what the government ought to be doing for us, to improve environmental citizenship. This report examines four central questions: What are the requirements (i.e., responsibilities) of citizenship vis-a-vis environmental decision- making processes; what constraints limit people`s ability to meet these requirements; what does our form of governance do to help or hinder in meeting these requirements; and what recommendations can be put forth to improve public participation in environmental decision making?

  18. An overview of algae biofuel production and potential environmental impact.

    PubMed

    Menetrez, Marc Y

    2012-07-03

    Algae are among the most potentially significant sources of sustainable biofuels in the future of renewable energy. A feedstock with virtually unlimited applicability, algae can metabolize various waste streams (e.g., municipal wastewater, carbon dioxide from industrial flue gas) and produce products with a wide variety of compositions and uses. These products include lipids, which can be processed into biodiesel; carbohydrates, which can be processed into ethanol; and proteins, which can be used for human and animal consumption. Algae are commonly genetically engineered to allow for advantageous process modification or optimization. However, issues remain regarding human exposure to algae-derived toxins, allergens, and carcinogens from both existing and genetically modified organisms (GMOs), as well as the overall environmental impact of GMOs. A literature review was performed to highlight issues related to the growth and use of algal products for generating biofuels. Human exposure and environmental impact issues are identified and discussed, as well as current research and development activities of academic, commercial, and governmental groups. It is hoped that the ideas contained in this paper will increase environmental awareness of issues surrounding the production of algae and will help the algae industry develop to its full potential.

  19. 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...

  20. 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).

  1. The role of Life Cycle Assessment in identifying and reducing environmental impacts of CCS

    SciTech Connect

    Sathre, Roger; Masanet, Eric; Cain, Jennifer; Chester, Mikhail

    2011-04-20

    Life Cycle Assessment (LCA) should be used to assist carbon capture and sequestration (CCS) planners to reduce greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions and avoid unintended environmental trade-offs. LCA is an analytical framework for determining environmental impacts resulting from processes, products, and services. All life cycle stages are evaluated including raw material sourcing, processing, operation, maintenance, and component end-of-life, as well as intermediate stages such as transportation. In recent years a growing number of LCA studies have analyzed CCS systems. We reviewed 50+ LCA studies, and selected 11 studies that compared the environmental performance of 23 electric power plants with and without CCS. Here we summarize and interpret the findings of these studies. Regarding overall climatemitigation effectiveness of CCS, we distinguish between the capture percentage of carbon in the fuels, the net carbon dioxide (CO2) emission reduction, and the net GHG emission reduction. We also identify trade-offs between the climate benefits and the potential increased non-climate impacts of CCS. Emissions of non-CO2 flue gases such as NOx may increase due to the greater throughput of fuel, and toxicity issues may arise due to the use of monoethanolamine (MEA) capture solvent, resulting in ecological and human health impacts. We discuss areas where improvements in LCA data or methods are needed. The decision to implement CCS should be based on knowledge of the overall environmental impacts of the technologies, not just their carbon capture effectiveness. LCA will be an important tool in providing that knowledge.

  2. 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 ...

  3. Framework for Identifying Key Environmental Concerns in Marine Renewable Energy Projects- Appendices

    SciTech Connect

    Kramer, Sharon; Previsic, Mirko; Nelson, Peter; Woo, Sheri

    2010-06-17

    Marine wave and tidal energy technology could interact with marine resources in ways that are not well understood. As wave and tidal energy conversion projects are planned, tested, and deployed, a wide range of stakeholders will be engaged; these include developers, state and federal regulatory agencies, environmental groups, tribal governments, recreational and commercial fishermen, and local communities. Identifying stakeholders’ environmental concerns in the early stages of the industry’s development will help developers address and minimize potential environmental effects. Identifying important concerns will also assist with streamlining siting and associated permitting processes, which are considered key hurdles by the industry in the U.S. today. In September 2008, RE Vision consulting, LLC was selected by the Department of Energy (DoE) to conduct a scenario-based evaluation of emerging hydrokinetic technologies. The purpose of this evaluation is to identify and characterize environmental impacts that are likely to occur, demonstrate a process for analyzing these impacts, identify the “key” environmental concerns for each scenario, identify areas of uncertainty, and describe studies that could address that uncertainty. This process is intended to provide an objective and transparent tool to assist in decision-making for siting and selection of technology for wave and tidal energy development. RE Vision worked with H. T. Harvey & Associates, to develop a framework for identifying key environmental concerns with marine renewable technology. This report describes the results of this study. This framework was applied to varying wave and tidal power conversion technologies, scales, and locations. The following wave and tidal energy scenarios were considered: 4 wave energy generation technologies 3 tidal energy generation technologies 3 sites: Humboldt coast, California (wave); Makapu’u Point, Oahu, Hawaii (wave); and the Tacoma Narrows, Washington (tidal

  4. Vibrio parahaemolyticus Strains of Pandemic Serotypes Identified from Clinical and Environmental Samples from Jiangsu, China

    PubMed Central

    Li, Jingjiao; Xue, Feng; Yang, Zhenquan; Zhang, Xiaoping; Zeng, Dexin; Chao, Guoxiang; Jiang, Yuan; Li, Baoguang

    2016-01-01

    Vibrio parahaemolyticus has emerged as a major foodborne pathogen in China, Japan, Thailand, and other Asian countries. In this study, 72 strains of V. parahaemolyticus were isolated from clinical and environmental samples between 2006 and 2014 in Jiangsu, China. The serotypes and six virulence genes including thermostable direct hemolysin (TDR) and TDR-related hemolysin (TRH) genes were assessed among the isolates. Twenty five serotypes were identified and O3:K6 was one of the dominant serotypes. The genetic diversity was assessed by multilocus sequence typing (MLST) analysis, and 48 sequence types (STs) were found, suggesting this V. parahaemolyticus group is widely dispersed and undergoing rapid evolution. A total of 25 strains of pandemic serotypes such as O3:K6, O5:K17, and O1:KUT were identified. It is worth noting that the pandemic serotypes were not exclusively identified from clinical samples, rather, nine strains were also isolated from environmental samples; and some of these strains harbored several virulence genes, which may render those strains pathogenicity potential. Therefore, the emergence of these “environmental” pandemic V. parahaemolyticus strains may poses a new threat to the public health in China. Furthermore, six novel serotypes and 34 novel STs were identified among the 72 isolates, indicating that V. parahaemolyticus were widely distributed and fast evolving in the environment in Jiangsu, China. The findings of this study provide new insight into the phylogenic relationship between V. parahaemolyticus strains of pandemic serotypes from clinical and environmental sources and enhance the MLST database; and our proposed possible O- and K- antigen evolving paths of V. parahaemolyticus may help understand how the serotypes of this dispersed bacterial population evolve. PMID:27303379

  5. 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…

  6. 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...

  7. 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

  8. 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

  9. 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

  10. 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.

  11. Potential Environmental Effects of Aircraft Emissions.

    DTIC Science & Technology

    1979-10-15

    Impact Assessment Program in 1975 and to provide a comprehensive discussion of the current modeling results. Assessments are made of the potential...developed in other countries and that new SSTs might be developed in the U. S. in the future, the Climatic Impact Assessment Program (CLAP) was...the CIAP studies, a concurrent and independent study was conducted by the Climatic Impact Committee of the National Academy of Sciences, and their

  12. 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

  13. Molecular Modeling of Environmentally Important Processes: Reduction Potentials

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Lewis, Anne; Bumpus, John A.; Truhlar, Donald G.; Cramer, Christopher J.

    2004-01-01

    The increasing use of computational quantum chemistry in the modeling of environmentally important processes is described. The employment of computational quantum mechanics for the prediction of oxidation-reduction potential for solutes in an aqueous medium is discussed.

  14. 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.

  15. Potential Environmental Impacts of Army Laser Operations: An Overview

    DTIC Science & Technology

    1983-06-01

    Aberdeen Proving Ground, MD 21010. AUTHORITY CRDEC ltr, 29 Mar 1990 THIS PAGE IS UNCLASSIFIED AD CHEMICAL S SYSTEMS LA1BORATORY US Army Armament Research ...and Development Command Aberdeen Proving Ground, Maryland 21010 Lii TECHNICAL REPORT ARCSL-TR-83066 POTENTIAL ENVIRONMENTAL MIACTS OF ARMY LASER...PERIOD COVERED Technical Report POTENTIAL ENVIRONMENTAL IMPACTS OF ARMY LASER 25 March 1982 - 30 June 1983 OPERATIONS. AN OVERVIEW *. PERFORMING ORG

  16. 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...

  17. 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...

  18. 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...

  19. Potential Application of Environmental Noise Recordings in Geoarchaeological Site Characterization

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Di Luzio, E.

    2015-12-01

    Environmental noise recordings are commonly applied in seismic microzonation studies. By calculating the H/V spectral ratio, the fundamental frequency of soft terrains overlying a rigid bedrock can be determined (Nakamura (1989). In such a simple two-layer system, equation f = n Vs/4H (1) links the resonance frequency "f" to the thickness "H" and shear waves velocity "Vs "of the resonating layer. In recent years, this methodology has been applied generally to obtain information on the seismostratigraphy of an investigated site in different environmental context. In this work, its potential application in the characterization of archaeological features hosted in shallow geological levels is discussed. Field cases are identified in the Appia Antica archaeological site which is placed in central Italy. Here, acknowledged targets correspond to: i) empty tanks carved by the Romans into Cretaceous limestone in the IV-III cen. BC and ii): the basaltic stone paving of the ancient road track which is locally buried beneath colluvial deposits. Narrowly-spaced recordings of environmental noise were carried using a portable digital seismograph equipped with three electrodynamic orthogonal sensors (velocimeters) responding in the band 0.1 ÷1024 Hz and adopting a sampling frequency of 256 Hz.. Results are discussed in terms of absolute H/V values and related distribution maps in the very high-frequency interval of 10-40Hz. In the tanks hosting area, interpolation of H/V maximum values around 13Hz matches caves location and alignment, which is also evidenced by clear inversions (H/V<1) at lower frequencies (10-1Hz). Correlation between H/V peaks and the top surface of the buried stone paving along the prosecution of the road track is even more straightforward. Finally, the depth variations of the tank roofs and the basaltic paving were reconstructed combining in equation (1) results of noise recordings with borehole data and geophysical surveys (SASW analysis).

  20. Exergy: its potential and limitations in environmental science and technology.

    PubMed

    Dewulf, Jo; Van Langenhove, Herman; Muys, Bart; Bruers, Stijn; Bakshi, Bhavik R; Grubb, Geoffrey F; Paulus, D M; Sciubba, Enrico

    2008-04-01

    New technologies, either renewables-based or not, are confronted with both economic and technical constraints. Their development takes advantage of considering the basic laws of economics and thermodynamics. With respect to the latter, the exergy concept pops up. Although its fundamentals, that is, the Second Law of Thermodynamics, were already established in the 1800s, it is only in the last years that the exergy concept has gained a more widespread interest in process analysis, typically employed to identify inefficiencies. However, exergy analysis today is implemented far beyond technical analysis; it is also employed in environmental, (thermo)economic, and even sustainability analysis of industrial systems. Because natural ecosystems are also subjected to the basic laws of thermodynamics, it is another subject of exergy analysis. After an introduction on the concept itself, this review focuses on the potential and limitations of the exergy conceptin (1) ecosystem analysis, utilized to describe maximum storage and maximum dissipation of energy flows (2); industrial system analysis: from single process analysis to complete process chain analysis (3); (thermo)economic analysis, with extended exergy accounting; and (4) environmental impact assessment throughout the whole life cycle with quantification of the resource intake and emission effects. Apart from technical system analysis, it proves that exergy as a tool in environmental impact analysis may be the most mature field of application, particularly with respect to resource and efficiency accounting, one of the major challenges in the development of sustainable technology. Far less mature is the exergy analysis of natural ecosystems and the coupling with economic analysis, where a lively debate is presently going on about the actual merits of an exergy-based approach.

  1. 42 CFR 137.301 - How are project and program environmental review costs identified?

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2010 CFR

    2010-10-01

    ... 42 Public Health 1 2010-10-01 2010-10-01 false How are project and program environmental review... HUMAN SERVICES INDIAN HEALTH SERVICE, DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH AND HUMAN SERVICES TRIBAL SELF-GOVERNANCE Construction Nepa Process § 137.301 How are project and program environmental review costs identified? (a)...

  2. Review of oil and HNS accidental spills in Europe: identifying major environmental monitoring gaps and drawing priorities.

    PubMed

    Neuparth, T; Moreira, S M; Santos, M M; Reis-Henriques, M A

    2012-06-01

    The European Atlantic area has been the scene of a number of extensive shipping incidents with immediate and potential long-term impacts to marine ecosystems. The occurrence of accidental spills at sea requires an effective response that must include a well executed monitoring programme to assess the environmental contamination and damage of the affected marine habitats. Despite a number of conventions and protocols developed by international and national authorities that focused on the preparedness and response to oil and HNS spills, much remains to be done, particularly in relation to the effectiveness of the environmental monitoring programmes implemented after oil and HNS spills. Hence, the present study reviews the status of the environmental monitoring programmes established following the major spill incidents over the last years in European waters, aiming at identifying the key monitoring gaps and drawing priorities for an effective environmental monitoring of accidental spills.

  3. Mars Environmental Compatibility Assessment (MECA): Identifying the Hazards of the Martian Soil

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Meloy, T. P.; Hecht, M. H.; Anderson, M. S.; Frant, M. A.; Fuerstenau, S. D.; Keller, H. U.; Markiewicz, W. J.; Marshall, J.; Pike, W. T.; Quate, C. F.

    1999-01-01

    Sometime in the next decade NASA will decide whether to send a human expedition to explore the planet Mars. The Mars Environmental Compatibility Assessment (MECA) has been selected by NASA to evaluate the Martian environment for soil and dust hazards to human exploration. The integrated MECA payload contains three elements: a wet-chemistry laboratory, a microscopy station, and enhancements to a lander robot-arm system incorporating arrays of material patches and an electrometer to identify triboelectric charging during soil excavation. The wet-chemistry laboratory will evaluate samples of Martian soil in water to determine the total dissolved solids, redox potential, pH, and quantify the concentration of many soluble ions using ion-selective electrodes. These electrodes can detect potentially dangerous heavy-metal ions, emitted pathogenic gases, and the soil's corrosive potential. MECA's microscopy station combines optical and atomic-force microscopy with a robot-arm camera to provide imaging over nine orders of magnitude, from meters to nanometers. Soil particle properties including size, shape, color, hardness, adhesive potential (electrostatic and magnetic), will be determined on the microscope stage using an ar-ray of sample receptacles and collection substrates, and an abrasion tool,. The simple, rugged atomic-force microscope will image in the submicron size range and has the capability of performing a particle-by-particle analysis of the dust and soil. Although selected by NASA's Human Exploration and Development of Space Enterprise, the MECA instrument suite also has the capability to address basic geology, paleoclimate, and exobiology issues. To understand both contemporaneous and ancient processes on Mars, the mineralogical, petrological, and reactivity of Martian surface materials should be constrained: the NMCA experiment will shed light on these quantities through its combination of chemistry and microscopy. On Earth, the earliest forms of life are

  4. A system for ranking environmental restoration potential release sites

    SciTech Connect

    Aamodt, P.; Bradbury, D.; Maassen, L.

    1994-12-31

    In this paper, we present a site ranking system created to establish remediation priorities at groups of potential release sites administered by the Environmental Management/Environmental Restoration Program at Los Alamos and Sandia National Laboratories. The system is easily implemented and is cost- and time-efficient. Relative rankings can be established for potential risk, pathways, and receptors. The system employs questionnaires that yielded numerical results that are readily handled by computerized databases. The system has proved highly workable during trials at Los Alamos. We believe that the system is particularly useful in cases where remediation priorities must be justified to the general public.

  5. 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

  6. AN INTEGRATED NETWORK APPROACH TO IDENTIFYING BIOLOGICAL PATHWAYS AND ENVIRONMENTAL EXPOSURE INTERACTIONS IN COMPLEX DISEASES

    PubMed Central

    DARABOS, CHRISTIAN; QIU, JINGYA; MOORE, JASON H.

    2015-01-01

    Complex diseases are the result of intricate interactions between genetic, epigenetic and environmental factors. In previous studies, we used epidemiological and genetic data linking environmental exposure or genetic variants to phenotypic disease to construct Human Phenotype Networks and separately analyze the effects of both environment and genetic factors on disease interactions. To better capture the intricacies of the interactions between environmental exposure and the biological pathways in complex disorders, we integrate both aspects into a single “tripartite” network. Despite extensive research, the mechanisms by which chemical agents disrupt biological pathways are still poorly understood. In this study, we use our integrated network model to identify specific biological pathway candidates possibly disrupted by environmental agents. We conjecture that a higher number of co-occurrences between an environmental substance and biological pathway pair can be associated with a higher likelihood that the substance is involved in disrupting that pathway. We validate our model by demonstrating its ability to detect known arsenic and signal transduction pathway interactions and speculate on candidate cell-cell junction organization pathways disrupted by cadmium. The validation was supported by distinct publications of cell biology and genetic studies that associated environmental exposure to pathway disruption. The integrated network approach is a novel method for detecting the biological effects of environmental exposures. A better understanding of the molecular processes associated with specific environmental exposures will help in developing targeted molecular therapies for patients who have been exposed to the toxicity of environmental chemicals. PMID:26776169

  7. Integrated Bioinformatics, Environmental Epidemiologic and Genomic Approaches to Identify Environmental and Molecular Links between Endometriosis and Breast Cancer

    PubMed Central

    Roy, Deodutta; Morgan, Marisa; Yoo, Changwon; Deoraj, Alok; Roy, Sandhya; Yadav, Vijay Kumar; Garoub, Mohannad; Assaggaf, Hamza; Doke, Mayur

    2015-01-01

    We present a combined environmental epidemiologic, genomic, and bioinformatics approach to identify: exposure of environmental chemicals with estrogenic activity; epidemiologic association between endocrine disrupting chemical (EDC) and health effects, such as, breast cancer or endometriosis; and gene-EDC interactions and disease associations. Human exposure measurement and modeling confirmed estrogenic activity of three selected class of environmental chemicals, polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs), bisphenols (BPs), and phthalates. Meta-analysis showed that PCBs exposure, not Bisphenol A (BPA) and phthalates, increased the summary odds ratio for breast cancer and endometriosis. Bioinformatics analysis of gene-EDC interactions and disease associations identified several hundred genes that were altered by exposure to PCBs, phthalate or BPA. EDCs-modified genes in breast neoplasms and endometriosis are part of steroid hormone signaling and inflammation pathways. All three EDCs–PCB 153, phthalates, and BPA influenced five common genes—CYP19A1, EGFR, ESR2, FOS, and IGF1—in breast cancer as well as in endometriosis. These genes are environmentally and estrogen responsive, altered in human breast and uterine tumors and endometriosis lesions, and part of Mitogen Activated Protein Kinase (MAPK) signaling pathways in cancer. Our findings suggest that breast cancer and endometriosis share some common environmental and molecular risk factors. PMID:26512648

  8. A hypervariable genomic island identified in clinical and environmental Mycobacterium avium subsp. hominissuis isolates from Germany.

    PubMed

    Sanchini, Andrea; Semmler, Torsten; Mao, Lei; Kumar, Narender; Dematheis, Flavia; Tandon, Kshitij; Peddireddy, Vidyullatha; Ahmed, Niyaz; Lewin, Astrid

    2016-11-01

    Mycobacterium avium subsp. hominissuis (MAH) is an opportunistic human pathogen widespread in the environment. Genomic islands (GI)s represent a part of the accessory genome of bacteria and influence virulence, drug-resistance or fitness and trigger bacterial evolution. We previously identified a novel GI in four MAH genomes. Here, we further explored this GI in a larger collection of MAH isolates from Germany (n=41), including 20 clinical and 21 environmental isolates. Based on comparative whole genome analysis, we detected this GI in 39/41 (95.1%) isolates. Although all these GIs integrated in the same insertion hotspot, there is high variability in the genetic structure of this GI: eight different types of GI have been identified, designated A-H (sized 6.2-73.3kb). These GIs were arranged as single GI (23/41, 56.1%), combination of two different GIs (14/41, 34.1%) or combination of three different GIs (2/41, 4.9%) in the insertion hotspot. Moreover, two GI types shared more than 80% sequence identity with sequences of M. canettii, responsible for Tuberculosis. A total of 253 different genes were identified in all GIs, among which the previously documented virulence-related genes mmpL10 and mce. The diversity of the GI and the sequence similarity with other mycobacteria suggests cross-species transfer, involving also highly pathogenic species. Shuffling of potential virulence genes such as mmpL10 via this GI may create new pathogens that can cause future outbreaks.

  9. Identifying the role of conservation biology for solving the environmental crisis.

    PubMed

    Dalerum, Fredrik

    2014-11-01

    Humans are altering their living environment to an extent that could cause environmental collapse. Promoting change into environmental sustainability is therefore urgent. Despite a rapid expansion in conservation biology, appreciation of underlying causes and identification of long-term solutions have largely been lacking. I summarized knowledge regarding the environmental crisis, and argue that the most important contributions toward solutions come from economy, political sciences, and psychology. Roles of conservation biology include providing environmental protection until sustainable solutions have been found, evaluating the effectiveness of implemented solutions, and providing societies with information necessary to align effectively with environmental values. Because of the potential disciplinary discrepancy between finding long-term solutions and short-term protection, we may face critical trade-offs between allocations of resources toward achieving sustainability. Since biological knowledge is required for such trade-offs, an additional role for conservation biologists may be to provide guidance toward finding optimal strategies in such trade-offs.

  10. 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.

  11. Mapping environmental injustices: pitfalls and potential of geographic information systems in assessing environmental health and equity.

    PubMed Central

    Maantay, Juliana

    2002-01-01

    Geographic Information Systems (GIS) have been used increasingly to map instances of environmental injustice, the disproportionate exposure of certain populations to environmental hazards. Some of the technical and analytic difficulties of mapping environmental injustice are outlined in this article, along with suggestions for using GIS to better assess and predict environmental health and equity. I examine 13 GIS-based environmental equity studies conducted within the past decade and use a study of noxious land use locations in the Bronx, New York, to illustrate and evaluate the differences in two common methods of determining exposure extent and the characteristics of proximate populations. Unresolved issues in mapping environmental equity and health include lack of comprehensive hazards databases; the inadequacy of current exposure indices; the need to develop realistic methodologies for determining the geographic extent of exposure and the characteristics of the affected populations; and the paucity and insufficiency of health assessment data. GIS have great potential to help us understand the spatial relationship between pollution and health. Refinements in exposure indices; the use of dispersion modeling and advanced proximity analysis; the application of neighborhood-scale analysis; and the consideration of other factors such as zoning and planning policies will enable more conclusive findings. The environmental equity studies reviewed in this article found a disproportionate environmental burden based on race and/or income. It is critical now to demonstrate correspondence between environmental burdens and adverse health impacts--to show the disproportionate effects of pollution rather than just the disproportionate distribution of pollution sources. PMID:11929725

  12. Mapping environmental injustices: pitfalls and potential of geographic information systems in assessing environmental health and equity.

    PubMed

    Maantay, Juliana

    2002-04-01

    Geographic Information Systems (GIS) have been used increasingly to map instances of environmental injustice, the disproportionate exposure of certain populations to environmental hazards. Some of the technical and analytic difficulties of mapping environmental injustice are outlined in this article, along with suggestions for using GIS to better assess and predict environmental health and equity. I examine 13 GIS-based environmental equity studies conducted within the past decade and use a study of noxious land use locations in the Bronx, New York, to illustrate and evaluate the differences in two common methods of determining exposure extent and the characteristics of proximate populations. Unresolved issues in mapping environmental equity and health include lack of comprehensive hazards databases; the inadequacy of current exposure indices; the need to develop realistic methodologies for determining the geographic extent of exposure and the characteristics of the affected populations; and the paucity and insufficiency of health assessment data. GIS have great potential to help us understand the spatial relationship between pollution and health. Refinements in exposure indices; the use of dispersion modeling and advanced proximity analysis; the application of neighborhood-scale analysis; and the consideration of other factors such as zoning and planning policies will enable more conclusive findings. The environmental equity studies reviewed in this article found a disproportionate environmental burden based on race and/or income. It is critical now to demonstrate correspondence between environmental burdens and adverse health impacts--to show the disproportionate effects of pollution rather than just the disproportionate distribution of pollution sources.

  13. Neighborhood deprivation affects children's mental health: environmental risks identified in a genetic design.

    PubMed

    Caspi, A; Taylor, A; Moffitt, T E; Plomin, R

    2000-07-01

    The possibility that neighborhood conditions affect children's development has captured much attention because of its implications for prevention. But does growing up in deprived neighborhoods matter above and beyond a genetic liability to behavior problems, if genetically vulnerable families tend to concentrate in poor neighborhoods? A nationwide study of 2-year-old twins shows that children in deprived neighborhoods were at increased risk for emotional and behavioral problems over and above any genetic liability. Environmental factors shared by members of a family accounted for 20% of the population variation in children's behavior problems, and neighborhood deprivation accounted for 5% of this family-wide environmental effect. The results suggest that the link between poor neighborhoods and children's mental health may be a true environmental effect, and demonstrate that genetic designs are environmentally informative and can be used to identify modifiable risk factors for promoting child health.

  14. Noble metals: a toxicological appraisal of potential new environmental contaminants.

    PubMed Central

    Brubaker, P E; Moran, J P; Bridbord, K; Hueter, F G

    1975-01-01

    The public health benefits expected by reducing known hazardous emissions from mobile sources should not be compromised by increasing levels of other potentially hazardous unregulated emissions. Catalytic converters are going to be used to meet the statutory requirements on carbon monoxide and hydrocarbon emissions from light duty motor vehicles. Platinum and palladium metals are the catalytic materials to be used in these emission control devices. Preliminary experimental evidence and analysis of the impact of these control devices on the future use and demand for platinum indicates that this metal may appear at detectable levels in the environment by the end of this decade. At the present time, platinum and palladium are not present in the public environment and represent potentially new environmental contaminants as a consequence of use of this new abatement control technology. There is relatively little information available to adequately assess the potential health hazards that may be associated with exposure to these metals and their compounds. Analysis of the environmental problems and concerns associated with possible new environmental contaminants are discussed. Limited estimates are made on community exposure by use of a meteorological dispersion model. Biodegradation potential and attention is also given to the limited toxicological information available. PMID:50939

  15. Potential environmental benefits of prospective genetic changes in broiler traits.

    PubMed

    Leinonen, I; Williams, A G; Kyriazakis, I

    2016-02-01

    A system approach-based Life Cycle Assessment (LCA) framework, combined with a simple mechanistic model of bird energy balance was used to predict the potential effects of 15 y prospective broiler breeding on the environmental impacts of the standard UK broiler production system. The year 2014 Ross 308 genotype was used as a baseline, and a future scenario was specified from rates of genetic improvement predicted by the industry. The scenario included changes in the traits of growth rate (reducing the time to reach a target weight 2.05 kg from 34 d to 27 d), body lipid content, carcass yield, mortality and the number of chicks produced by a breeder hen. Diet composition was adjusted in order to accommodate the future nutrient requirements of the birds following the genetic change. The results showed that predicted changes in biological performance due to selective breeding could lead to reduced environmental impacts of the broiler production chain, most notably in the Eutrophication Potential (by 12%), Acidification Potential (by 10%) and Abiotic Resource Use (by 9%) and Global Warming Potential (by 9%). These reductions were mainly caused by the reduced maintenance energy requirement and thus lower feed intake, resulting from the shorter production cycle, together with the increased carcass yield. However, some environmental benefits were limited by the required changes in feed composition (e.g., increased inclusion of soy meal and vegetable oil) as a result of the changes in bird nutrient requirements. This study is the first one aiming to link the mechanistic animal modeling approach to predicted genetic changes in order to produce quantitative estimates of the future environmental impacts of broiler production. Although a more detailed understanding on the mechanisms of the potential changes in bird performance and their consequences on feeding and husbandry would be still be needed, the modeling framework produced in this study provides a starting point for

  16. 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.

  17. Environmentally induced epigenetic toxicity: potential public health concerns

    PubMed Central

    Marczylo, Emma L.; Jacobs, Miriam N.; Gant, Timothy W.

    2016-01-01

    Abstract Throughout our lives, epigenetic processes shape our development and enable us to adapt to a constantly changing environment. Identifying and understanding environmentally induced epigenetic change(s) that may lead to adverse outcomes is vital for protecting public health. This review, therefore, examines the present understanding of epigenetic mechanisms involved in the mammalian life cycle, evaluates the current evidence for environmentally induced epigenetic toxicity in human cohorts and rodent models and highlights the research considerations and implications of this emerging knowledge for public health and regulatory toxicology. Many hundreds of studies have investigated such toxicity, yet relatively few have demonstrated a mechanistic association among specific environmental exposures, epigenetic changes and adverse health outcomes in human epidemiological cohorts and/or rodent models. While this small body of evidence is largely composed of exploratory in vivo high-dose range studies, it does set a precedent for the existence of environmentally induced epigenetic toxicity. Consequently, there is worldwide recognition of this phenomenon, and discussion on how to both guide further scientific research towards a greater mechanistic understanding of environmentally induced epigenetic toxicity in humans, and translate relevant research outcomes into appropriate regulatory policies for effective public health protection. PMID:27278298

  18. Delphi analysis: a technique for identifying and ranking environmental and natural resource policy issues

    SciTech Connect

    Leitch, J.A.; Leistritz, F.L.

    1984-01-01

    A Delphi-type survey and a consensus-building workshop were carried out to identify the most significant natural resource issues and problems emerging in the Great Plains and Rocky Mountain states. Approximately 107 issues initially were identified through a literature search and an inquiry Delphi round. Delphi round enabled the list to be narrowed to 25 issues. While consensus was found on the top 25 issues as a group, neither the Delphi panel nor the workshop participants agreed on the top five. Specific issues related to water and energy comprised the majority of those identified as most significant. Overall, the Delphi method appears to be a powerful and flexible tool for evaluating emerging environmental issues and problems. The analysis suggests that Delphi findings are quite robust with respect to minor changes in panel composition. Delphi thus appears to be an approach that may find increasing application in environmental policy analysis. 11 references, 3 figures, 4 tables.

  19. Identifying environmental health priorities in underserved populations: a study of rural versus urban communities

    PubMed Central

    Bernhard, M.C.; Evans, M.B.; Kent, S.T.; Johnson, E.; Threadgill, S.L.; Tyson, S.; Becker, S.M.; Gohlke, J.M.

    2013-01-01

    Objectives Understanding and effectively addressing persistent health disparities in minority communities requires a clear picture of members’ concerns and priorities. This study was intended to engage residents in urban and rural communities in order to identify environmental health priorities. Specific emphasis was placed on how the communities defined the term environment, their perceptions of environmental exposures as affecting their health, specific priorities in their communities, and differences in urban versus rural populations. Study design A community-engaged approach was used to develop and implement focus groups and compare environmental health priorities in urban versus rural communities. Methods A total of eight focus groups were conducted: four in rural and four in urban communities. Topics included defining the term environment, how the environment may affect health, and environmental priorities within their communities, using both open discussion and a predefined list. Data were analysed both qualitatively and quantitatively to identify patterns and trends. Results There were important areas of overlap in priorities between urban and rural communities; both emphasized the importance of the social environment and shared a concern over air pollution from industrial sources. In contrast, for urban focus groups, abandoned houses and their social and physical sequelae were a high priority while concerns about adequate sewer and water services and road maintenance were high priorities in rural communities. Conclusions This study was able to identify environmental health priorities in urban versus rural minority communities. In contrast to some previous risk perception research, the results of this study suggest prioritization of tangible, known risks in everyday life instead of rare, disaster-related events, even in communities that have recently experienced devastating damage from tornadoes. The findings can help inform future efforts to study

  20. Potential for use of environmental factors in urban planning

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Teixeira da Silva, Ricardo; van der Ploeg, Martine; van Delden, Hedwig; Fleskens, Luuk

    2016-04-01

    Projections for population growth estimate, on top of the current 7.4 billion world population, an increase of 2 billion people for the next 40 years. It is also projected that 66 per cent of the world population in 2050 will live in urban areas. To accommodate the urban population growth cities are changing continuously land cover to urban areas. Such changes are a threat for natural resources and food production systems stability and capability to provide food and other functions. However, little has been done concerning a rational soil management for food production in urban and peri-urban areas. This study focuses on the assessment of soil lost due to urban expansion and discusses the potential loss regarding the quality of the soil for food production and environmental functions. It is relevant to increase the knowledge on the role of soils in peri-urban areas and in the interaction of physical, environmental and social factors. The methodology consists of assessing the soil quality in and around urban and peri-urban areas. It focuses particularly on the physical properties and the environmental factors, for two periods of time and account the potential losses due to urban expansion. This project is on-going, therefore current advances will be presented and will look for a discussion on the contribution of soil quality for decision-making and land management in urban and peri-urban areas.

  1. Mitochondrial membrane potential: a novel biomarker of oxidative environmental stress.

    PubMed Central

    Vayssier-Taussat, Muriel; Kreps, Sarah E; Adrie, Christophe; Dall'Ava, Josette; Christiani, David; Polla, Barbara S

    2002-01-01

    Epidemiologic analyses, traditionally based on long-term cohort or case-control studies, provide retrospective causal associations between exposure to a particular environmental stressor and an exposure-related disease end point. Recent research initiatives have propelled a shift toward exploring molecular epidemiology and molecular biological markers (biomarkers) as a means of providing more immediate, quantitative risk assessment of potentially deleterious environmental exposures. We compared, in normal human monocytes isolated from the blood of healthy donors, variations in Hsp70 expression and mitochondrial membrane potential (delta psi m) in response to exposure to either tobacco smoke or gamma-irradiation, two models for environmentally mediated oxidant exposure. On the basis of its mechanistic specificity for oxidants and little baseline variation in cells from distinct individuals, we propose that delta psi m represents a selective in vitro and in vivo biomarker for oxidant exposure. delta psi m may be used to gauge risks associated with oxidant-mediated air pollution and radiation. PMID:11882482

  2. Identifying the Effects of Environmental and Policy Change Interventions on Healthy Eating

    PubMed Central

    Bowen, Deborah J.; Barrington, Wendy E.; Beresford, Shirley A.A.

    2015-01-01

    Obesity has been characterized as a disease. Strategies to change the incidence and prevalence of this disease include a focus on changing physical and social environments, over and above individual-level strategies, using a multilevel or systems approach. We focus our attention on evidence published between 2008 and 2013 on the effectiveness of interventions in nutrition environments, i.e., environmental interventions designed to influence the intake of healthful foods and amount of energy consumed. An overarching socioecological framework that has guided much of this research was used to characterize different types of environmental strategies. Intervention examples in each area of the framework are provided with a discussion of key findings and related conceptual and methodological issues. The emphasis in this review is on adults, but clearly this literature is only one part of the picture. Much research has been focused on child-specific interventions, including environmental interventions. Some evidence suggests effectiveness of policy-based or other types of interventions that aim to regulate or restructure environments to promote healthy dietary choices, and these strategies would apply to both children and adults. Opportunities to evaluate these policy changes in adults’ social and physical environments are rare. Much of the existing research has been with children. As conceptual and methodological issues continue to be identified and resolved, we hope that future research in this domain will identify environmental strategies that can be included in intervention toolboxes to build healthy nutrition environments for both adults and children. PMID:25785891

  3. Identifying the effects of environmental and policy change interventions on healthy eating.

    PubMed

    Bowen, Deborah J; Barrington, Wendy E; Beresford, Shirley A A

    2015-03-18

    Obesity has been characterized as a disease. Strategies to change the incidence and prevalence of this disease include a focus on changing physical and social environments, over and above individual-level strategies, using a multilevel or systems approach. We focus our attention on evidence published between 2008 and 2013 on the effectiveness of interventions in nutrition environments, i.e., environmental interventions designed to influence the intake of healthful foods and amount of energy consumed. An overarching socioecological framework that has guided much of this research was used to characterize different types of environmental strategies. Intervention examples in each area of the framework are provided with a discussion of key findings and related conceptual and methodological issues. The emphasis in this review is on adults, but clearly this literature is only one part of the picture. Much research has been focused on child-specific interventions, including environmental interventions. Some evidence suggests effectiveness of policy-based or other types of interventions that aim to regulate or restructure environments to promote healthy dietary choices, and these strategies would apply to both children and adults. Opportunities to evaluate these policy changes in adults' social and physical environments are rare. Much of the existing research has been with children. As conceptual and methodological issues continue to be identified and resolved, we hope that future research in this domain will identify environmental strategies that can be included in intervention toolboxes to build healthy nutrition environments for both adults and children.

  4. Potential environmental impacts of offshore UK geological CO2 storage

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Carruthers, Kit; Wilkinson, Mark; Butler, Ian B.

    2016-04-01

    Geological carbon dioxide storage in the United Kingdom (UK) will almost certainly be entirely offshore, with storage for over 100 years' worth of UK CO2 output from industry and power generation in offshore depleted hydrocarbon fields and sandstone formations. Storage capacity can be limited by the increase in formation water pressure upon CO2 injection, therefore removal and disposal of formation waters ('produced waters') can control formation water pressures, and increase CO2 storage capacity. Formation waters could also be produced during CO2-Enhanced Oil Recovery (CO2-EOR). The precedent from current UK North Sea hydrocarbon extraction is to 'overboard' produced waters into the ocean, under current regulations. However, laboratory and field scale studies, with an emphasis on the effects on onshore shallow potable groundwaters, have shown that CO2 dissolution in formation waters during injection and storage acidifies the waters and promotes mobilisation from the reservoir sandstones of major and trace elements into solution, including heavy metals. Eight of these elements are specifically identified in the UK as potentially hazardous to the marine environment (As, Cd, Cr, Cu, Hg, Ni, Pb, Zn). A comparison was made between the concentrations of these eight trace elements in the results of laboratory batch leaching experiments of reservoir rock in CO2-rich saline solutions and overboarded waters from current offshore UK hydrocarbon production. This showed that, taking the North Sea as a whole, the experimental results fall within the range of concentrations of current oil and gas activities. However, on a field-by-field basis, concentrations may be enhanced with CO2 storage, such that they are higher than waters normally produced from a particular field. Lead, nickel and zinc showed the greatest concentration increases in the experiments with the addition of CO2, with the other five elements of interest not showing any strong trends with respect to enhanced CO2

  5. Environmental engineering of navigation infrastructure: a survey of existing practices, challenges, and potential opportunities.

    PubMed

    Fredette, Thomas J; Foran, Christy M; Brasfield, Sandra M; Suedel, Burton C

    2012-01-01

    Navigation infrastructure such as channels, jetties, river training structures, and lock-and-dam facilities are primary components of a safe and efficient water transportation system. Planning for such infrastructure has until recently involved efforts to minimize impacts on the environment through a standardized environmental assessment process. More recently, consistent with environmental sustainability concepts, planners have begun to consider how such projects can also be constructed with environmental enhancements. This study examined the existing institutional conditions within the US Army Corps of Engineers and cooperating federal agencies relative to incorporating environmental enhancements into navigation infrastructure projects. The study sought to (1) investigate institutional attitudes towards the environmental enhancement of navigation infrastructure (EENI) concept, (2) identify potential impediments to implementation and solutions to such impediments, (3) identify existing navigation projects designed with the express intent of enhancing environmental benefit in addition to the primary project purpose, (4) identify innovative ideas for increasing environmental benefits for navigation projects, (5) identify needs for additional technical information or research, and (6) identify laws, regulations, and policies that both support and hinder such design features. The principal investigation tool was an Internet-based survey with 53 questions. The survey captured a wide range of perspectives on the EENI concept including ideas, concerns, research needs, and relevant laws and policies. Study recommendations included further promotion of the concept of EENI to planners and designers, documentation of existing projects, initiation of pilot studies on some of the innovative ideas provided through the survey, and development of national goals and interagency agreements to facilitate implementation.

  6. 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)

  7. 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...

  8. Potentials and Limitations of Wireless Sensor Networks for Environmental

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bumberger, J.; Remmler, P.; Hutschenreuther, T.; Toepfer, H.; Dietrich, P.

    2013-12-01

    Understanding and dealing with environmental challenges worldwide requires suitable interdisciplinary methods and a level of expertise to be able to implement these solutions, so that the lifestyles of future generations can be secured in the years to come. To characterize environmental systems it is necessary to identify and describe processes with suitable methods. Environmental systems are often characterized by their high heterogeneity, so individual measurements for their complete representation are often not sufficient. The application of wireless sensor networks in terrestrial and aquatic ecosystems offer significant benefits as a better consideration of the local test conditions becomes possible. This can be essential for the monitoring of heterogeneous environmental systems. Significant advantages in the application of wireless sensor networks are their self-organizing behaviour, resulting in a major reduction in installation and operation costs and time. In addition, a point measurement with a sensor is significantly improved by measuring at several points. It is also possible to perform analog and digital signal processing and computation on the basis of the measured data close to the sensor. Hence, a significant reduction of the data to be transmitted can be achieved which leads to a better energy management of sensor nodes. Furthermore, their localization via satellite, the miniaturization of the nodes and long-term energy self-sufficiency are current topics under investigation. In this presentation, the possibilities and limitations of the applicability of wireless sensor networks for long-term environmental monitoring are presented. To underline the importance of this future technology, example concepts are given in the field of near-surface geothermics, groundwater observation, measurement of spatial radiation intensity and air humidity on soils, measurement of matter fluxes, greenhouse gas measurement, and landslide monitoring.

  9. Environmental Health Related Socio-Spatial Inequalities: Identifying “Hotspots” of Environmental Burdens and Social Vulnerability

    PubMed Central

    Shrestha, Rehana; Flacke, Johannes; Martinez, Javier; van Maarseveen, Martin

    2016-01-01

    Differential exposure to multiple environmental burdens and benefits and their distribution across a population with varying vulnerability can contribute heavily to health inequalities. Particularly relevant are areas with high cumulative burdens and high social vulnerability termed as “hotspots”. This paper develops an index-based approach to assess these multiple burdens and benefits in combination with vulnerability factors at detailed intra-urban level. The method is applied to the city of Dortmund, Germany. Using non-spatial and spatial methods we assessed inequalities and identified “hotspot” areas in the city. We found modest inequalities burdening higher vulnerable groups in Dortmund (CI = −0.020 at p < 0.05). At the detailed intra-urban level, however, inequalities showed strong geographical patterns. Large numbers of “hotspots” exist in the northern part of the city compared to the southern part. A holistic assessment, particularly at a detailed local level, considering both environmental burdens and benefits and their distribution across the population with the different vulnerability, is essential to inform environmental justice debates and to mobilize local stakeholders. Locating “hotspot” areas at this detailed spatial level can serve as a basis to develop interventions that target vulnerable groups to ensure a health conducive equal environment. PMID:27409625

  10. Using peat for energy: Potential environmental restraints. Overview

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Reed, R. M.; Voorhees, L. D.; Mulholland, P. J.

    Serious consideration is being given to using peat as an energy resource in Minnesota, North Carolina, Florida, and some New England States. Potential environmental constraints for using peat as an energy resource are associated with disruption of important regional wetland ecosystems. Mining peatlands may significantly modify ground and surface water hydrology, degrade water quality in downstream receiving systems, contribute to the deterioration of local air quality, disrupt or eliminate plant and animal populations having specialized requirements and limited distributions, and destroy unique wetland ecosystems representing important scientific and educational resources. Careful selection of peatlands to be developed and application of appropriate mitigation and monitoring programs will be necessary to offset these impacts.

  11. 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…

  12. Prioritizing chemicals for environmental management in China based on screening of potential risks

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yu, Xiangyi; Mao, Yan; Sun, Jinye; Shen, Yingwa

    2014-03-01

    The rapid development of China's chemical industry has created increasing pressure to improve the environmental management of chemicals. To bridge the large gap between the use and safe management of chemicals, we performed a comprehensive review of the international methods used to prioritize chemicals for environmental management. By comparing domestic and foreign methods, we confirmed the presence of this gap and identified potential solutions. Based on our literature review, we developed an appropriate screening method that accounts for the unique characteristics of chemical use within China. The proposed method is based on an evaluation using nine indices of the potential hazard posed by a chemical: three environmental hazard indices (persistence, bioaccumulation, and eco-toxicity), four health hazard indices (acute toxicity, carcinogenicity, mutagenicity, and reproductive and developmental toxicity), and two environmental exposure hazard indices (chemical amount and utilization pattern). The results of our screening agree with results of previous efforts from around the world, confirming the validity of the new system. The classification method will help decisionmakers to prioritize and identify the chemicals with the highest environmental risk, thereby providing a basis for improving chemical management in China.

  13. Coral bleaching: a potential biomarker of environmental stress.

    PubMed

    Meehan, W J; Ostrander, G K

    1997-04-25

    Coral bleaching refers to the loss of symbiotic algae by host corals, or to the loss of pigmentation by the algae themselves, causing corals to appear white or "bleached." Some corals may regain algae or pigmentation and survive, but when bleaching is severe the host coral dies. Coral bleaching events have increased dramatically in the last two decades, and coral reefs throughout the world have been extensively degraded as a result. This article reviews coral bleaching for investigators working in the field of toxicology and environmental health, a group of scientists not normally exposed to this issue. Several environmental stressors have been correlated with bleaching, including fluctuations in sea surface temperatures and salinity, increased sedimentation, increased solar radiation, and contaminants such as oil and herbicides. Molecular mechanisms of bleaching are only beginning to be investigated and are thus far poorly understood. Toxicologists have the potential to make significant contributions toward understanding anthropogenic aspects of coral bleaching and elucidating molecular mechanisms of this important environmental problem.

  14. Biosensor Zebrafish Provide New Insights into Potential Health Effects of Environmental Estrogens

    PubMed Central

    Lee, Okhyun; Takesono, Aya; Tada, Masazumi; Kudoh, Tetsuhiro

    2012-01-01

    Background: Environmental estrogens alter hormone signaling in the body that can induce reproductive abnormalities in both humans and wildlife. Available testing systems for estrogens are focused on specific systems such as reproduction. Crucially, however, the potential for significant health impacts of environmental estrogen exposures on a variety of body systems may have been overlooked. Objective: Our aim was to develop and apply a sensitive transgenic zebrafish model to assess real-time effects of environmental estrogens on signaling mechanisms in a whole body system for use in integrated health assessments. Methods: We created a novel transgenic biosensor zebrafish containing an estrogen-inducible promoter derived with multiple tandem estrogen responsive elements (EREs) and a Gal4ff-UAS system for enhanced response sensitivity. Results: Using our novel estrogen-responsive transgenic (TG) zebrafish, we identified target tissues for environmental estrogens; these tissues have very high sensitivity even at environmentally relevant concentrations. Exposure of the TG fish to estrogenic endocrine-disrupting chemicals (EDCs) induced specific expression of green fluorescent protein (GFP) in a wide variety of tissues including the liver, heart, skeletal muscle, otic vesicle, forebrain, lateral line, and ganglions, most of which have not been established previously as targets for estrogens in fish. Furthermore, we found that different EDCs induced GFP expression with different tissue response patterns and time trajectories, suggesting different potential health effects. Conclusion: We have developed a powerful new model for understanding toxicological effects, mechanisms, and health impacts of environmental estrogens in vertebrates. PMID:22510978

  15. 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

  16. Environmental effects on the identified natural frequencies of the Dowling Hall Footbridge

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Moser, Peter; Moaveni, Babak

    2011-10-01

    Continuous monitoring of structural vibrations is becoming increasingly common as sensors and data acquisition systems become more affordable, and as system and damage identification methods develop. In vibration-based structural health monitoring, the dynamic modal parameters of a structure are usually used as damage-sensitive features. The modal parameters are often sensitive to changing environmental conditions such as temperature, humidity, or excitation amplitude. Environmental conditions can have as large an effect on the modal parameters as significant structural damage, so these effects should be accounted for before applying damage identification methods. This paper presents results from a continuous monitoring system installed on the Dowling Hall Footbridge on the campus of Tufts University. Significant variability in the identified natural frequencies is observed; these changes in natural frequency are strongly correlated with temperature. Several nonlinear models are proposed to represent the relationship between the identified natural frequencies and measured temperatures. The final model is then validated using independent sets of measured data. Finally, confidence intervals are estimated for the identified natural frequencies as a function of temperature. The ratio of observed outliers to the expected rate of outliers based on the confidence level can be used as a damage detection index.

  17. High Incidence of Mammalian Orthoreovirus Identified by Environmental Surveillance in Taiwan

    PubMed Central

    Huang, Sheng-Wen; Yang, Jyh-Yuan; Wang, Jen-Ren

    2015-01-01

    Wild poliovirus (WPV) persists in diverse locales worldwide, spreading outward from endemic areas. In response to the international threat of WPV transmission and changes in the national vaccination policy, we established an environmental surveillance system to monitor the circulation of wild and vaccine-related poliovirus in Taiwan. From July 2012 to December 2013, we collected sewage specimens every month from 10 sewage treatment plants located throughout Taiwan. The specimens were concentrated by the two-phase separation method and then inoculated into L20B, RD, and A549 cells for virus isolation. Viral isolates were identified and serotyped by immunofluorescence assay or molecular analysis. A total of 300 sewage samples were collected, and the results showed 163 samples (54.3%) were positive for virus, and 268 isolates were identified. Among these, 75 samples (25%) were positive for enterovirus (EV), but no poliovirus was found. In addition, 92 isolates were identified as enteroviruses and the most common serotypes were coxsackievirus B4, coxsackievirus B3, and coxsackievirus B2. Interestingly, 102 (34%) and 82 (27.3%) specimens were positive for mammalian orthoreovirus (MRV) and adenovirus, respectively. This study confirmed that sewage surveillance can be a useful additional modality for monitoring the possible presence of wild-type or vaccine-derived poliovirus in wastewater, and can indicate the current types of viruses circulating in the population. Furthermore, since MRV was found in children with acute necrotizing encephalopathy and meningitis, the high incidence of MRV detected by environmental surveillance warrants further investigation. PMID:26555962

  18. Environmental Association Analyses Identify Candidates for Abiotic Stress Tolerance in Glycine soja, the Wild Progenitor of Cultivated Soybeans

    PubMed Central

    Anderson, Justin E.; Kono, Thomas J. Y.; Stupar, Robert M.; Kantar, Michael B.; Morrell, Peter L.

    2016-01-01

    Natural populations across a species range demonstrate population structure owing to neutral processes such as localized origins of mutations and migration limitations. Selection also acts on a subset of loci, contributing to local adaptation. An understanding of the genetic basis of adaptation to local environmental conditions is a fundamental goal in basic biological research. When applied to crop wild relatives, this same research provides the opportunity to identify adaptive genetic variation that may be used to breed for crops better adapted to novel or changing environments. The present study explores an ex situ conservation collection, the USDA germplasm collection, genotyped at 32,416 SNPs to identify population structure and test for associations with bioclimatic and biophysical variables in Glycine soja, the wild progenitor of Glycine max (soybean). Candidate loci were detected that putatively contribute to adaptation to abiotic stresses. The identification of potentially adaptive variants in this ex situ collection may permit a more targeted use of germplasm collections. PMID:26818076

  19. Environmental Association Analyses Identify Candidates for Abiotic Stress Tolerance in Glycine soja, the Wild Progenitor of Cultivated Soybeans.

    PubMed

    Anderson, Justin E; Kono, Thomas J Y; Stupar, Robert M; Kantar, Michael B; Morrell, Peter L

    2016-04-07

    Natural populations across a species range demonstrate population structure owing to neutral processes such as localized origins of mutations and migration limitations. Selection also acts on a subset of loci, contributing to local adaptation. An understanding of the genetic basis of adaptation to local environmental conditions is a fundamental goal in basic biological research. When applied to crop wild relatives, this same research provides the opportunity to identify adaptive genetic variation that may be used to breed for crops better adapted to novel or changing environments. The present study explores an ex situ conservation collection, the USDA germplasm collection, genotyped at 32,416 SNPs to identify population structure and test for associations with bioclimatic and biophysical variables in Glycine soja, the wild progenitor of Glycine max (soybean). Candidate loci were detected that putatively contribute to adaptation to abiotic stresses. The identification of potentially adaptive variants in this ex situ collection may permit a more targeted use of germplasm collections.

  20. Environmental potential of carbon dioxide utilization in the polyurethane supply chain.

    PubMed

    von der Assen, Niklas; Sternberg, André; Kätelhön, Arne; Bardow, André

    2015-01-01

    Potential environmental benefits have been identified for the utilization of carbon dioxide (CO2) as a feedstock for polyurethanes (PUR). CO2 can be utilized in the PUR supply chain in a wide variety of ways ranging from direct CO2 utilization for polyols as a PUR precursor, to indirect CO2 utilization for basic chemicals in the PUR supply chain. In this paper, we present a systematic exploration and environmental evaluation of all direct and indirect CO2 utilization options for flexible and rigid PUR foams. The analysis is based on an LCA-based PUR supply chain optimization model using linear programming to identify PUR production with minimal environmental impacts. The direct utilization of CO2 for polyols allows for large specific impact reductions of up to 4 kg CO2-eq. and 2 kg oil-eq. per kg CO2 utilized, but the amounts of CO2 that can be utilized are limited to 0.30 kg CO2 per kg PUR. The amount of CO2 utilized can be increased to up to 1.7 kg CO2 per kg PUR by indirect CO2 utilization in the PUR supply chain. Indirect CO2 utilization requires hydrogen (H2). The environmental impacts of H2 production strongly affect the impact of indirect CO2 utilization in PUR. To achieve optimal environmental performance under the current fossil-based H2 generation, PUR production can only utilize much less CO2 than theoretically possible. Thus, utilizing as much CO2 in the PUR supply chain as possible is not always environmentally optimal. Clean H2 production is required to exploit the full CO2 utilization potential for environmental impact reduction in PUR production.

  1. 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

  2. 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.

  3. Enhancing the Department of Defense's Capability to Identify Environmental Exposures Into the 21st Century.

    PubMed

    Lindler, Luther E

    2015-10-01

    Military service members come in contact with a wide range of hazardous substances especially during deployment. The identification of service member's with potential exposures to infectious diseases and environmental toxic substances has been a problem for the U.S. military almost since the formation of the services and continues to be an issue today. In June and July of 2013, the Armed Forces Health Surveillance Center sponsored two meetings to address the need by the Department of Defense to perform retrospective exposure analysis that would support military force health protection efforts. The first meeting included medical professionals who were familiar with health problems that followed potential environmental or infectious disease exposures but that the military health system was unprepared to address. The second group was composed of technical experts who were asked to suggest potential material and nonmaterial solutions to address the needs of the military public health community. This supplement to Military Medicine includes the outcome of these two meetings, descriptions of some of the Department of Defense biorepositories including the large serum repository housed at Armed Forces Health Surveillance Center and discussion of additional topics related to the establishment and use of biorepositories that would support public health practice in the 21st century.

  4. Castor bean (Ricinus communis L.) as a potential environmental bioindicator.

    PubMed

    Mendes, M G; Santos Junior, C D; Dias, A C C; Bonetti, A M

    2015-10-21

    Biomonitoring of air quality using living organisms is a very interesting approach to environmental impact assessment. Organisms with a vast distribution, such as plants, are widely used for these purposes. The castor bean (Ricinus communis L.) is an oleaginous plant that can potentially be used as a bioindicator plant owing to its rapid growth and large leaves, which have a wide surface area of contact with the air and the pollutants therein. This study investigated the the bioindicator potential of the castor bean by performing several tests. We observed statistically significant differences in the concentrations of chlorophyll a and b in the leaves of plants in polluted areas compared to that in the control group plants, which were located in a pollution-free area. Leaves of plants in the former group had higher peroxidase activity and showed a greater buffering ability than those of plants in the control group. The pKa values obtained via buffering capacity tests, revealed the presence of aminoazobenzene (an industrial dye) in leaves of R. communis. Genotoxicity was evaluated through the comet assay technique and revealed that other than some differences in DNA fragmentation, there is no statistically significant difference in this parameter between places analyzed. Our data indicate that R. communis can be a highly useful biological indicator. Further, we hypothesized that the castor bean can be a potential candidate for phytoremediation owing its physiological buffering capacity when exposed to substantial pollution.

  5. CO2 Sequestration in Unmineable Coal Seams: Potential Environmental Impacts

    SciTech Connect

    Hedges, S.W.; Soong, Yee; McCarthy Jones, J.R.; Harrison, D.K.; Irdi, G.A.; Frommell, E.A.; Dilmore, R.M.; Pique, P.J.; Brown, T.D

    2005-09-01

    An initial investigation into the potential environmental impacts of CO2 sequestration in unmineable coal seams has been conducted, focusing on changes in the produced water during enhanced coalbed methane (ECBM) production using a CO2 injection process (CO2-ECBM). Two coals have been used in this study, the medium volatile bituminous Upper Freeport coal (APCS 1) of the Argonne Premium Coal Samples series, and an as-mined Pittsburgh #8 coal, which is a high volatile bituminous coal. Coal samples were reacted with either synthetic produced water or field collected produced water and gaseous carbon dioxide at 40 οC and 50 bar to evaluate the potential for mobilizing toxic metals during CO2-ECBM/sequestration. Microscopic and x-ray diffraction analysis of the post-reaction coal samples clearly show evidence of chemical reaction, and chemical analysis of the produced water shows substantial changes in composition. These results suggest that changes to the produced water chemistry and the potential for mobilizing toxic trace elements from coalbeds are important factors to be considered when evaluating deep, unmineable coal seams for CO2 sequestration.

  6. A two-scale system to identify environmental risk of chemical industry clusters.

    PubMed

    Huang, Lei; Wan, Wenbo; Li, Fengying; Li, Bing; Yang, Jie; Bi, Jun

    2011-02-15

    Recent reform policies in China have spurred rapid industrial development. This has led to a large increase in chemical accidents, which may have catastrophic impacts on the local population and environment. As industrial facilities become more complex, it becomes more difficult to control and mitigate the risks associated with chemical accidents. In this study, we propose a two-scale system for assessing the environmental risk level of chemical industry clusters. A series of risk early warning indices for both the plant-specific level and regional clusters level are used in this system. Firstly, at the enterprise scale, a risk early warning index is constructed using inputs such as the presence of hazardous materials, the operation of critical plant equipment and the efficiency of extant management techniques. Secondly, an index for quantifying risks on regional scales depends on environmental, economic, and social conditions as well as the specific enterprises' components. As an illustration, the system is applied to a case study involving a five-plant chemical industry cluster in Jiangsu province, China. A geographical information system-based methodology is used to obtain a composite index score for each mesh of the five plants. The results prove that the proposed two-scale early warning system can efficiently identify environmental risk and help guide emergency responses at both the enterprise and cluster level.

  7. Potential Environmental Benefits from Increased Use of Bioenergy in China

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Fan, Shuyang; Freedman, Bill; Gao, Jixi

    2007-09-01

    Because of its large population and rapidly growing economy, China is confronting a serious energy shortage and daunting environmental problems. An increased use of fuels derived from biomass could relieve some demand for nonrenewable sources of energy while providing environmental benefits in terms of cleaner air and reduced emissions of greenhouse gases. In 2003, China generated about 25.9 × 108 metric tons of industrial waste (liquid + solid), 14.7 × 108 metric tons/year (t/y) of manure (livestock + human), 7.1 × 108 t/y of crop residues and food-processing byproducts, 2 × 108 t/y of fuelwood and wood manufacturing residues, and 1.5 × 108 t/y of municipal waste. Biofuels derived from these materials could potentially displace the use of about 4.12 × 108 t/y of coal and 3.75 × 106 t/y of petroleum. An increased bioenergy use of this magnitude would help to reduce the emissions of key air pollutants: SO2 by 11.6 × 106 t/y, NOX by 1.48 × 106 t/y, CO2 by 1.07 × 109 t/y, and CH4 by 50 × 106 t/y. The reduced SO2 emissions would be equivalent to 54% of the national emissions in 2003, whereas those for CO2 are 30%. It is important to recognize, however, that large increases in the use of biomass fuels also could result in socioeconomic and environmental problems such as less production of food and damage caused to natural habitats.

  8. Potential environmental benefits from increased use of bioenergy in China.

    PubMed

    Fan, Shuyang; Freedman, Bill; Gao, Jixi

    2007-09-01

    Because of its large population and rapidly growing economy, China is confronting a serious energy shortage and daunting environmental problems. An increased use of fuels derived from biomass could relieve some demand for nonrenewable sources of energy while providing environmental benefits in terms of cleaner air and reduced emissions of greenhouse gases. In 2003, China generated about 25.9 x 10(8) metric tons of industrial waste (liquid + solid), 14.7 x 10(8) metric tons/year (t/y) of manure (livestock + human), 7.1 x 10(8) t/y of crop residues and food-processing byproducts, 2 x 10(8) t/y of fuelwood and wood manufacturing residues, and 1.5 x 10(8) t/y of municipal waste. Biofuels derived from these materials could potentially displace the use of about 4.12 x 10(8) t/y of coal and 3.75 x 10(6) t/y of petroleum. An increased bioenergy use of this magnitude would help to reduce the emissions of key air pollutants: SO(2 )by 11.6 x 10(6) t/y, NO(X) by 1.48 x 10(6) t/y, CO2 by 1.07 x 10(9) t/y, and CH4 by 50 x 10(6) t/y. The reduced SO(2) emissions would be equivalent to 54% of the national emissions in 2003, whereas those for CO2 are 30%. It is important to recognize, however, that large increases in the use of biomass fuels also could result in socioeconomic and environmental problems such as less production of food and damage caused to natural habitats.

  9. Scale-dependent complementarity of climatic velocity and environmental diversity for identifying priority areas for conservation under climate change.

    PubMed

    Carroll, Carlos; Roberts, David R; Michalak, Julia L; Lawler, Joshua J; Nielsen, Scott E; Stralberg, Diana; Hamann, Andreas; Mcrae, Brad H; Wang, Tongli

    2017-03-07

    As most regions of the earth transition to altered climatic conditions, new methods are needed to identify refugia and other areas whose conservation would facilitate persistence of biodiversity under climate change. We compared several common approaches to conservation planning focused on climate resilience over a broad range of ecological settings across North America and evaluated how commonalities in the priority areas identified by different methods varied with regional context and spatial scale. Our results indicate that priority areas based on different environmental diversity metrics differed substantially from each other and from priorities based on spatiotemporal metrics such as climatic velocity. Refugia identified by diversity or velocity metrics were not strongly associated with the current protected area system, suggesting the need for additional conservation measures including protection of refugia. Despite the inherent uncertainties in predicting future climate, we found that variation among climatic velocities derived from different general circulation models and emissions pathways was less than the variation among the suite of environmental diversity metrics. To address uncertainty created by this variation, planners can combine priorities identified by alternative metrics at a single resolution and downweight areas of high variation between metrics. Alternately, coarse-resolution velocity metrics can be combined with fine-resolution diversity metrics in order to leverage the respective strengths of the two groups of metrics as tools for identification of potential macro- and microrefugia that in combination maximize both transient and long-term resilience to climate change. Planners should compare and integrate approaches that span a range of model complexity and spatial scale to match the range of ecological and physical processes influencing persistence of biodiversity and identify a conservation network resilient to threats operating at

  10. 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

  11. Convergent transcriptomics and proteomics of environmental enrichment and cocaine identifies novel therapeutic strategies for addiction.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Yafang; Crofton, Elizabeth J; Fan, Xiuzhen; Li, Dingge; Kong, Fanping; Sinha, Mala; Luxon, Bruce A; Spratt, Heidi M; Lichti, Cheryl F; Green, Thomas A

    2016-12-17

    Transcriptomic and proteomic approaches have separately proven effective at identifying novel mechanisms affecting addiction-related behavior; however, it is difficult to prioritize the many promising leads from each approach. A convergent secondary analysis of proteomic and transcriptomic results can glean additional information to help prioritize promising leads. The current study is a secondary analysis of the convergence of recently published separate transcriptomic and proteomic analyses of nucleus accumbens (NAc) tissue from rats subjected to environmental enrichment vs. isolation and cocaine self-administration vs. saline. Multiple bioinformatics approaches (e.g. Gene Ontology (GO) analysis, Ingenuity Pathway Analysis (IPA), and Gene Set Enrichment Analysis (GSEA)) were used to interrogate these rich data sets. Although there was little correspondence between mRNA vs. protein at the individual target level, good correspondence was found at the level of gene/protein sets, particularly for the environmental enrichment manipulation. These data identify gene sets where there is a positive relationship between changes in mRNA and protein (e.g. glycolysis, ATP synthesis, translation elongation factor activity, etc.) and gene sets where there is an inverse relationship (e.g. ribosomes, Rho GTPase signaling, protein ubiquitination, etc.). Overall environmental enrichment produced better correspondence than cocaine self-administration. The individual targets contributing to mRNA and protein effects were largely not overlapping. As a whole, these results confirm that robust transcriptomic and proteomic data sets can provide similar results at the gene/protein set level even when there is little correspondence at the individual target level and little overlap in the targets contributing to the effects.

  12. 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…

  13. 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)

  14. Environmental surface cleanliness and the potential for contamination during handwashing.

    PubMed

    Griffith, Christopher J; Malik, Rifhat; Cooper, Rose A; Looker, Nick; Michaels, Barry

    2003-04-01

    Effective handwashing (including drying) is important in infection control. The ability of the various stages of handwashing to decrease skin-surface microbial counts has been documented. However, an important element, environmental surface cleanliness, and the potential for contamination of hands during the process has not been well studied or quantified. An examination of the adenosine triphosphate (a measure of residual organic soil), bacterial, and staphylococcal load on ward handwash station surfaces, which could be touched during handwashing, is reported. Hand contact surfaces tested consisted of approximately 620 each of: faucet handles, soap dispenser activator mechanisms, and folded paper-towel dispenser exits. Failure rates in excess of benchmark clean values were higher with adenosine triphosphate assays than microbial counts. This could indicate the presence of a higher level of general organic debris (eg, skin cells) as opposed to microbial contamination or could reflect greater assay sensitivity. Faucet handles were more likely to be contaminated and be in excess of benchmark values than paper-towel dispenser exits. However, the latter are likely to be the final surface touched during the handwashing process and overall nearly 20% were above microbiologic benchmark values. Many of the organisms isolated were staphylococci and the results are discussed within the context of microbial cross-contamination and potential pathogen spread.

  15. Spatial epidemiology of blastomycosis hospitalizations: detecting clusters and identifying environmental risk factors.

    PubMed

    Seitz, Amy E; Adjemian, Jennifer; Steiner, Claudia A; Prevots, D Rebecca

    2015-06-01

    Blastomycosis is a disease caused by endemic fungi that ranges from severe pulmonary or disseminated to mild or asymptomatic. Environmental factors associated with it are not well described throughout the endemic area. We used the intramural State Inpatient Database from the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality and ArcMap GIS to identify geographic high-risk clusters of blastomycosis hospitalizations in 13 states in the US endemic regions (AR, IA, IL, IN, KY, LA, MI, MN, MO, MS, OH, TN, and WI). We then used logistic regression to identify risk factors associated with these high-risk clusters. We describe six clusters of counties in which there was an elevated incidence of blastomycosis hospitalizations. We identified maximum mean annual temperature, percentage of persons aged ≥65 years, and mercury and copper soil content as being associated with high-risk clusters. Specifically, the odds of a county being part of a high-risk cluster was associated with increasing percentage of population over age 65, decreasing maximum temperature, increasing mercury, and decreasing copper soil content. Healthcare providers should be aware of these high-risk areas so that blastomycosis can be included, as appropriate, in a differential diagnosis for patients currently or previously residing in these areas.

  16. Potential roles of noncoding RNAs in environmental epigenetic transgenerational inheritance.

    PubMed

    Yan, Wei

    2014-12-01

    "Epigenetic transgenerational inheritance" (ETI) has been defined as germline (sperm or egg) transmission of epigenetic information between generations in the absence of direct exposures or genetic manipulations. Among reported cases of ETI in mammals, the majority are induced by environmental factors, including environmental toxicants [e.g. agricultural fungicide vinclozolin, plastic additive bisphenol A, pesticide methoxychlor, dioxin, di-(2-ethylhexyl) phthalate, dichlorodiphenyltrichloroethane, and hydrocarbons] and poor nutritional conditions. Although the ETI phenomenon is well established, the underlying mechanism remains elusive. Putative epimutations, including changes in DNA methylation and histone modification patterns, have been reported, but it remains unclear how these epimutations are formed in the first place, and how they are memorized in the germline and then get transmitted to subsequent generations. Based on recent advances in our understanding of regulatory noncoding RNAs (ncRNAs), I propose that ncRNAs are involved in ETI, during both the initial epimutation formation and the subsequent germline transmission of epimutations. ncRNAs can function at epigenetic levels by affecting DNA methylation and histone modifications, thereby changing gene transcriptional activities, which can lead to an altered mRNA transcriptome associated with a disease phenotype. Alternatively, novel or altered ncRNA expression can cause dysregulated post-transcriptional regulation, thus directly affecting the mRNA transcriptome and inducing a disease phenotype. Sperm-borne ncRNAs are potential mediators for epigenetic memory across generations, but they alone may not be sufficient for stable transmission of epimutations across generations. Overall, research on ncRNAs in the context of ETI is urgently needed to shed light on the underlying mechanism of ETI.

  17. Calculations supporting evaluation of potential environmental standards for Yucca Mountain

    SciTech Connect

    Duguid, J.O.; Andrews, R.W.; Brandstetter, E.; Dale, T.F.; Reeves, M.

    1994-04-01

    The Energy Policy Act of 1992, Section 801 (US Congress, 1992) provides for the US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to contract the National Academy of Sciences (NAS) to conduct a study and provide findings and recommendations on reasonable standards for the disposal of high-level wastes at the Yucca Mountain site. The NAS study is to provide findings and recommendations which include, among other things, whether a health-based standard based on dose to individual members of the public from releases to the accessible environment will provide a reasonable standard for the protection of the health and safety of the public. The EPA, based upon and consistent with the findings and recommendations of the NAS, is required to promulgate standards for protection of the public from releases from radioactive materials stored or disposed of in a repository at the Yucca Mountain site. This document presents a number of different ``simple`` analyses of undisturbed repository performance that are intended to provide input to those responsible for setting appropriate environmental standards for a potential repository at the Yucca Mountain site in Nevada. Each of the processes included in the analyses has been simplified to capture the primary significance of that process in containing or isolating the waste from the biosphere. In these simplified analyses, the complex waste package interactions were approximated by a simple waste package ``failure`` distribution which is defined by the initiation and rate of waste package ``failures``. Similarly, releases from the waste package and the engineered barrier system are controlled by the very near field environment and the presence and rate of advective and diffusive release processes. Release was approximated by either a simple alteration-controlled release for the high solubility radionuclides and either a diffusive or advective-controlled release for the solubility-limited radionuclides.

  18. Environmental toxicity and radioactivity assessment of a titanium-processing residue with potential for environmental use.

    PubMed

    Wendling, Laura A; Binet, Monique T; Yuan, Zheng; Gissi, Francesca; Koppel, Darren J; Adams, Merrin S

    2013-07-01

    Thorough examination of the physicochemical characteristics of a Ti-processing residue was undertaken, including mineralogical, geochemical, and radiochemical characterization, and an investigation of the environmental toxicity of soft-water leachate generated from the residue. Concentrations of most metals measured in the leachate were low; thus, the residue is unlikely to leach high levels of potentially toxic elements on exposure to low-ionic strength natural waters. Relative to stringent ecosystem health-based guidelines, only chromium concentrations in the leachate exceeded guideline concentrations for 95% species protection; however, sulfate was present at concentrations known to cause toxicity. It is likely that the high concentration of calcium and extreme water hardness of the leachate reduced the bioavailability of some elements. Geochemical modeling of the leachate indicated that calcium and sulfate concentrations were largely controlled by gypsum mineral dissolution. The leachate was not toxic to the microalga Chlorella sp., the cladoceran Ceriodaphnia dubia, or the estuarine bacterium Vibrio fischeri. The Ti-processing residue exhibited an absorbed dose rate of 186 nGy/h, equivalent to an annual dose of 1.63 mGy and an annual effective dose of 0.326 mGy. In summary, the results indicate that the Ti-processing residue examined is suitable for productive use as an environmental amendment following 10 to 100 times dilution to ameliorate potential toxic effects due to chromium or sulfate.

  19. 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

  20. 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.

  1. Genome sequencing reveals the environmental origin of enterococci and potential biomarkers for water quality monitoring.

    PubMed

    Weigand, Michael R; Ashbolt, Nicholas J; Konstantinidis, Konstantinos T; Santo Domingo, Jorge W

    2014-04-01

    Enterococci are common members of the gut microbiome and their ease of culturing has facilitated worldwide use as indicators of fecal pollution of waters. However, enterococci were recently shown to persist in environmental habitats, often in the absence of fecal input, potentially confounding water quality assays. Toward resolving this issue and providing a more complete picture of natural enterococci diversity, 11 isolates of Enterococcus faecalis recovered from freshwater watersheds (environmental) were sequenced and compared to 59 available enteric genomes. Phenotypically and phylogenetically the environmental E. faecalis were indistinguishable from their enteric counterparts. However, distinct environmental- and enteric-associated gene signatures, encoding mostly accessory nutrient utilization pathways, were detected among the variable genes. Specifically, a nickel uptake operon was over-represented in environmental genomes, while genes for utilization of sugars thought to be abundant in the gut such as xylose were over-represented in enteric genomes. The distribution and phylogeny of these identified signatures suggest that ancestors of E. faecalis resided in extra-enteric habitats, challenging the prevailing commensal view of enterococci ecology. Thus, habitat-associated gene content changes faster than core genome phylogeny and may include biomarkers for reliably detecting fecal contaminants for improved microbial water quality monitoring.

  2. 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

  3. 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.

  4. Developments in the EPA Computational Toxicology Program to Identify Environmental Endocrine Disruptors ( Environmental Endocrine Disruptors Gordon Conference)

    EPA Science Inventory

    Presentation at the Environmental Endocrine Disruptors Gordon Conference in Newry, ME June 22, 2016 to give an overview of the use of high throughput screening and high throughput toxicokinetics to build models for endocrine disruption by environmental chemicals for estrogen rece...

  5. 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.

  6. 76 FR 21938 - Potential Environmental Impacts of the Proposed Runway 13 Extension and Associated Actions for...

    Federal Register 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014

    2011-04-19

    ... Policy Act (NEPA) of 1969, as amended, FAA Orders 1050.1E, ``Environmental Impacts: Policies and... resources identified in accordance with FAA Order 1050.1E, Environmental Impacts: Policies and...

  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. Identifying and assessing the application of ecosystem services approaches in environmental policies and decision making.

    PubMed

    Van Wensem, Joke; Calow, Peter; Dollacker, Annik; Maltby, Lorraine; Olander, Lydia; Tuvendal, Magnus; Van Houtven, George

    2017-01-01

    The presumption is that ecosystem services (ES) approaches provide a better basis for environmental decision making than do other approaches because they make explicit the connection between human well-being and ecosystem structures and processes. However, the existing literature does not provide a precise description of ES approaches for environmental policy and decision making, nor does it assess whether these applications will make a difference in terms of changing decisions and improving outcomes. We describe 3 criteria that can be used to identify whether and to what extent ES approaches are being applied: 1) connect impacts all the way from ecosystem changes to human well-being, 2) consider all relevant ES affected by the decision, and 3) consider and compare the changes in well-being of different stakeholders. As a demonstration, we then analyze retrospectively whether and how the criteria were met in different decision-making contexts. For this assessment, we have developed an analysis format that describes the type of policy, the relevant scales, the decisions or questions, the decision maker, and the underlying documents. This format includes a general judgment of how far the 3 ES criteria have been applied. It shows that the criteria can be applied to many different decision-making processes, ranging from the supranational to the local scale and to different parts of decision-making processes. In conclusion we suggest these criteria could be used for assessments of the extent to which ES approaches have been and should be applied, what benefits and challenges arise, and whether using ES approaches made a difference in the decision-making process, decisions made, or outcomes of those decisions. Results from such studies could inform future use and development of ES approaches, draw attention to where the greatest benefits and challenges are, and help to target integration of ES approaches into policies, where they can be most effective. Integr Environ

  9. Residential energy use in Mexico: Structure, evolution, environmental impacts, and savings potential

    SciTech Connect

    Masera, O.; Friedmann, R.; deBuen, O.

    1993-05-01

    This article examines the characteristics of residential energy use in Mexico, its environmental impacts, and the savings potential of the major end-uses. The main options and barriers to increase the efficiency of energy use are discussed. The energy analysis is based on a disaggregation of residential energy use by end-uses. The dynamics of the evolution of the residential energy sector during the past 20 years are also addressed when the information is available. Major areas for research and for innovative decision-making are identified and prioritized.

  10. Maximizing colonial waterbirds' breeding events using identified ecological thresholds and environmental flow management.

    PubMed

    Bino, Gilad; Steinfeld, Celine; Kingsford, Richard T

    2014-01-01

    Global wetland biodiversity loss continues unabated, driven by increased demand for freshwater. A key strategy for conservation management of freshwater systems is to maintain the quantity and quality of the natural water regimes, including the frequency and timing of flows. Formalizing an ecological model depicting the key ecological components and the underlying processes of cause and effect is required for successful conservation management. Models linking hydrology with ecological responses can prove to be an invaluable tool for robust decision-making of environmental flows. Here, we explored alternative water management strategies and identified maximal strategies for successful long-term management of colonial waterbirds in the Macquarie Marshes, Australia. We modeled fluctuations in breeding abundances of 10 colonial waterbird species over the past quarter century (1986-2010). Clear relationships existed between flows and breeding, both in frequencies and total abundances, with a strong linear relationship for flows > 200 GL. Thresholds emerged for triggering breeding events in all 10 species, but these varied among species. Three species displayed a sharp threshold response between 100 GL and 250 GL. These had a breeding probability of 0.5 when flows were > 180 GL and a 0.9 probability of breeding with flows > 350 GL. The remaining species had a probability greater than 0.5 of breeding with flows > 400 GL. Using developed models, we examined the effects of five environmental flow management strategies on the variability of flows and subsequent likelihood of breeding. Management to different target volumes of environmental flows affected overall and specific breeding probabilities. The likelihood of breeding for all 10 colonial waterbirds increased from a regulated historical mean (+/-SD) of 0.36 +/- 0.09 to 0.53 +/- 0.14, an improvement of 47.5% +/- 18.7%. Management of complex ecosystems depends on good understanding of the responses of organisms to the

  11. 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.

  12. 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.

  13. 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

  14. Environmental stressors during space flight: potential effects on body temperature

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Jauchem, J. R.

    1988-01-01

    1. Organisms may be affected by many environmental factors during space flight, e.g., acceleration, weightlessness, decreased pressure, changes in oxygen tension, radiofrequency radiation and vibration. 2. Previous studies of change in body temperature--one response to these environmental factors--are reviewed. 3. Conditions leading to heat stress and hypothermia are discussed.

  15. Potential Perils of Changing Environmental Context on Examination Scores

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Van Der Wege, Mija; Barry, Leslie A.

    2008-01-01

    Environmental context can affect memory retrieval in a wide range of situations. The authors investigate the relationship between the location of a collegiate final examination and student performance. Although several other studies have looked at the impact of environmental context on test taking, this study does so in a real-world environment,…

  16. Identifying the decision to be supported: a review of papers from environmental modelling and software

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Sojda, Richard S.; Chen, Serena H.; El Sawah, Sondoss; Guillaume, Joseph H.A.; Jakeman, A.J.; Lautenbach, Sven; McIntosh, Brian S.; Rizzoli, A.E.; Seppelt, Ralf; Struss, Peter; Voinov, Alexey; Volk, Martin

    2012-01-01

    Two of the basic tenets of decision support system efforts are to help identify and structure the decisions to be supported, and to then provide analysis in how those decisions might be best made. One example from wetland management would be that wildlife biologists must decide when to draw down water levels to optimise aquatic invertebrates as food for breeding ducks. Once such a decision is identified, a system or tool to help them make that decision in the face of current and projected climate conditions could be developed. We examined a random sample of 100 papers published from 2001-2011 in Environmental Modelling and Software that used the phrase “decision support system” or “decision support tool”, and which are characteristic of different sectors. In our review, 41% of the systems and tools related to the water resources sector, 34% were related to agriculture, and 22% to the conservation of fish, wildlife, and protected area management. Only 60% of the papers were deemed to be reporting on DSS. This was based on the papers reviewed not having directly identified a specific decision to be supported. We also report on the techniques that were used to identify the decisions, such as formal survey, focus group, expert opinion, or sole judgment of the author(s). The primary underlying modelling system, e.g., expert system, agent based model, Bayesian belief network, geographical information system (GIS), and the like was categorised next. Finally, since decision support typically should target some aspect of unstructured decisions, we subjectively determined to what degree this was the case. In only 23% of the papers reviewed, did the system appear to tackle unstructured decisions. This knowledge should be useful in helping workers in the field develop more effective systems and tools, especially by being exposed to the approaches in different, but related, disciplines. We propose that a standard blueprint for reporting on DSS be developed for

  17. Desk Reference to the Toolkit for Assessing Potential Allegations of Environmental Injustice

    EPA Pesticide Factsheets

    This document provides an overview of tools and other reference materials to assist U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) personnel in assessing and addressing potential allegations of environmental injustice.

  18. 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.

  19. Evaluating the mobility potential of antibiotic resistance genes in environmental resistomes without metagenomics

    PubMed Central

    Pärnänen, Katariina; Karkman, Antti; Tamminen, Manu; Lyra, Christina; Hultman, Jenni; Paulin, Lars; Virta, Marko

    2016-01-01

    Antibiotic resistance genes are ubiquitous in the environment. However, only a fraction of them are mobile and able to spread to pathogenic bacteria. Until now, studying the mobility of antibiotic resistance genes in environmental resistomes has been challenging due to inadequate sensitivity and difficulties in contig assembly of metagenome based methods. We developed a new cost and labor efficient method based on Inverse PCR and long read sequencing for studying mobility potential of environmental resistance genes. We applied Inverse PCR on sediment samples and identified 79 different MGE clusters associated with the studied resistance genes, including novel mobile genetic elements, co-selected resistance genes and a new putative antibiotic resistance gene. The results show that the method can be used in antibiotic resistance early warning systems. In comparison to metagenomics, Inverse PCR was markedly more sensitive and provided more data on resistance gene mobility and co-selected resistances. PMID:27767072

  20. Panel 1: medical surveillance prior to, during, and following potential environmental exposures.

    PubMed

    Brix, Kelley; O'Donnell, Francis L

    2011-07-01

    This review assesses the Department of Defense approach to medical surveillance of environmental exposures during deployments. Seven steps in the process are reviewed: (1) exposure assessment, (2) identification of the target population, (3) surveillance for current exposures, (4) surveillance for long-term effects, (5) record keeping for environmental data, (6) analysis of surveillance data, and (7) communication of results. Exposures need to be evaluated as soon as they are recognized, and potentially exposed individuals should be identified at the time of the exposure. Long-term health surveillance relies primarily on electronic medical records. Department of Defense databases are powerful resources for surveillance for service members, up until the time of separation. The Millennium Cohort Study is tracking the health status of 150,000 service members for 21 years, including after separation. Risk communication principles should be incorporated when reporting surveillance results. Often, there are several interested audiences, in addition to military leaders and service members.

  1. 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.

  2. 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

  3. 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.

  4. 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.

  5. 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.

  6. Identifying and managing adverse environmental health effects: 2. Outdoor air pollution

    PubMed Central

    Abelsohn, Alan; Stieb, David; Sanborn, Margaret D.; Weir, Erica

    2002-01-01

    AIR POLLUTION CONTRIBUTES TO PREVENTABLE ILLNESS AND DEATH. Subgroups of patients who appear to be more sensitive to the effects of air pollution include young children, the elderly and people with existing chronic cardiac and respiratory disease such as chronic obstructive pulmonary disease and asthma. It is unclear whether air pollution contributes to the development of asthma, but it does trigger asthma episodes. Physicians are in a position to identify patients at particular risk of health effects from air pollution exposure and to suggest timely and appropriate actions that these patients can take to protect themselves. A simple tool that uses the CH2OPD2 mnemonic (Community, Home, Hobbies, Occupation, Personal habits, Diet and Drugs) can help physicians take patients' environmental exposure histories to assess those who may be at risk. As public health advocates, physicians contribute to the primary prevention of illness and death related to air pollution in the population. In this article we review the origins of air pollutants, the pathophysiology of health effects, the burden of illness and the clinical implications of smog exposure using the illustrative case of an adolescent patient with asthma. PMID:12000251

  7. A New Bayesian Method to Identify the Environmental Factors That Influence Recent Migration

    PubMed Central

    Faubet, Pierre; Gaggiotti, Oscar E.

    2008-01-01

    We present a new multilocus genotype method that makes inferences about recent immigration rates and identifies the environmental factors that are more likely to explain observed gene flow patterns. It also estimates population-specific inbreeding coefficients, allele frequencies, and local population FST's and performs individual assignments. We generate synthetic data sets to determine the region of the parameter space where our method is and is not able to provide accurate estimates. Our simulation study indicates that reliable results can be obtained when the global level of genetic differentiation (FST) is >1%, the number of loci is only 10, and sample sizes are of the order of 50 individuals per population. We illustrate our method by applying it to Pakistani human data, considering altitude and geographic distance as explanatory factors. Our results suggest that altitude explains better the genetic data than geographic distance. Additionally, they show that southern low-altitude populations have higher migration rates than northern high-altitude ones. PMID:18245344

  8. 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.

  9. 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.

  10. 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

  11. 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.

  12. 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.

  13. Human predisposition to cognitive impairment and its relation with environmental exposure to potentially toxic elements.

    PubMed

    Cabral Pinto, Marina M S; Marinho-Reis, A Paula; Almeida, Agostinho; Ordens, Carlos M; Silva, Maria M V G; Freitas, Sandra; Simões, Mário R; Moreira, Paula I; Dinis, Pedro A; Diniz, M Luísa; Ferreira da Silva, Eduardo A; Condesso de Melo, M Teresa

    2017-03-09

    New lines of evidence suggest that less than 10% of neurodegenerative diseases have a strict genetic aetiology and other factors may be prevalent. Environmental exposures to potentially toxic elements appear to be a risk factor for Parkinson's, Alzheimer's and sclerosis diseases. This study proposes a multidisciplinary approach combining neurosciences, psychology and environmental sciences while integrating socio-economic, neuropsychological, environmental and health data. We present the preliminary results of a neuropsychological assessment carried out in elderly residents of the industrial city of Estarreja. A battery of cognitive tests and a personal questionnaire were administered to the participants. Multivariate analysis and multiple linear regression analysis were used to identify potential relationships between the cognitive status of the participants and environmental exposure to potentially toxic elements. The results suggest a relationship between urinary PTEs levels and the incidence of cognitive disorders. They also point towards water consumption habits and profession as relevant factors of exposure. Linear regression models show that aluminium (R (2) = 38%), cadmium (R (2) = 11%) and zinc (R (2) = 6%) are good predictors of the scores of the Mini-Mental State Examination cognitive test. Median contents (µg/l) in groundwater are above admissible levels for drinking water for aluminium (371), iron (860), manganese (250), and zinc (305). While the World Health Organization does not provide health-based reference values for aluminium, results obtained from this study suggest that it may have an important role in the cognitive status of the elderly. Urine proved to be a suitable biomarker of exposure both to elements with low and high excretion rates.

  14. 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.

  15. 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

  16. Permafrost as palaeo-environmental archive - potentials and limitations

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Schirrmeister, L.; Wetterich, S.; Meyer, H.; Grosse, G.; Schwamborn, G.; Siegert, C.

    2009-04-01

    temperatures, mean winter temperatures, mean Juli temperatures, precipitation, humidity, soil climate and chemistry, hydrology and hydrochemistry of waters). The general potential of permafrost archives includes spatial (circumarctic, high arctic to boreal zones) and temporal (Mid Pleistocene to modern) environmental gradients. Lateral cross sections contain information about permafrost degradation during interglacial periods, the aggradation of ice-rich sequences during stadial and interstadial periods, and extreme changes in periglacial hydrology during the late Quaternary. The spatial reconstruction of ancient landscapes is possible by detailed study of kilometer-long coastal exposures. Temporally relative high resolution (about 50 years) isotope data from ice wedges reflect the Late Pleistocene to Holocene climate transition. Using transfer functions for pollen, plant macro remains or chironomids, the numerical estimation of palaeo-climate data (temperature and precipitation) is possible. The limitations of permafrost archives are the frequent lack of continuous sequences due to thermokarst or thermo-erosion events. Local stratigraphies are sometimes difficult to correlate on a regional scale because of permafrost degradation and neotectonic influence on the accumulative/erosive environment in some regions. Until now there are still uncertainties for comparing different geochronological methods, some of them related to unknown influences of permafrost processes on chemical and physical parameters important to the age determination technique. Due to strong cryoturbation patterns and sometimes challenging sampling situations on near-vertical frozen exposures the geochronological resolution in permafrost sequences is usually lower than in lacustrine sequences or glacial ice cores. Eventually, as for any other archive, we need to consider the effect of local versus regional signals derived from the palaeo-ecological interpretation of fossil records.

  17. 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

  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. 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.

  20. 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

  1. Bisphenol A (BPA) in China: a review of sources, environmental levels, and potential human health impacts.

    PubMed

    Huang, Y Q; Wong, C K C; Zheng, J S; Bouwman, H; Barra, R; Wahlström, B; Neretin, L; Wong, M H

    2012-07-01

    Bisphenol A (BPA), identified as an endocrine disruptor, is an industrially important chemical that is used as a raw material in the manufacture of many products such as engineering plastics (e.g., epoxy resins/polycarbonate plastics), food cans (i.e., lacquer coatings), and dental composites/sealants. The demand and production capacity of BPA in China have grown rapidly. This trend will lead to much more BPA contamination in the environmental media and in the general population in China. This paper reviews the current literature concerning the pollution status of BPA in China (the mainland, Hong Kong, and Taiwan) and its potential impact on human health. Due to potential human health risks from long-term exposure to BPA, body burden of the contaminant should be monitored.

  2. Using a Physical Education Environmental Survey to Identify Areas of Concern and Improve Conditions

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Hill, Grant; Hulbert, George

    2007-01-01

    School environmental conditions can impact learning in physical educational classes. It is important for schools to control environmental health hazards, not only to promote a conducive school learning environment, but to also reduce associated health risks. To help physical education leaders determine the quality of physical education facilities…

  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. 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.

  5. Identifying the dominant metabolic strategies used by microorganisms within basalt-hosted, anoxic deep subsurface basement fluids via environmental genomics

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rappe, M. S.; Jungbluth, S.; Carr, S. A.; Lin, H. T.; Hsieh, C. C.; Nigro, O. D.; Steward, G. F.; Orcutt, B.

    2014-12-01

    A microbial ecosystem distinct from both overlying sediments and bottom seawater lies within the basaltic crust of the Juan de Fuca Ridge flank. The metabolic potential and genomic characteristics of microbes residing in fluids of this remote, anoxic region of the subsurface ocean were investigated using environmental DNA extracted from large-volume fluid samples obtained from advanced borehole observatories installed at two recently drilled IODP Boreholes, U1362A and U1362B. Fluids were collected from the deep (204 meters sub-basement) horizon of Borehole U1362A and shallow (40 meters sub-basement) horizon of Borehole U1362B and used to generate 503 and 705 million base-pairs of genomic DNA sequence data, respectively. Phylogenetically informative genes revealed that the community structure recovered via metagenomics was generally consistent with that obtained previously by 16S rRNA gene sequencing and was dominated by uncultivated bacterial lineages of Proteobacteria, Nitrospirae, Candidate Division OP8 (Aminicenantes), Thermotoga and archaeal groups THSCG, MCG (Bathyarchaeota), MBGE, and Archaeoglobus. Genes involved in phage integration, chemotaxis, nitrate reduction, methanogenesis, and amino acid degradation were all detected, revealing potentially dynamic microbial communities. Putative sulfate reduction genes were discovered within previously identified Firmicutes lineage Candidatus Desulforudis, along with other groups (e.g. Archaeoglobus). Significant metagenome assembly resulted in 72 and 105 contigs of >100 Kbp from U1362B and U1362A, respectively, including 1137, 977 and 356 Kbp-long contigs from Candidate Division OP8 residing in U1362B. These assemblies have revealed novel metabolic potential within abundant members of the deep subsurface microbial community, which can be directly related to their survival in the deep oceanic crust.

  6. Education in Environmental Remote Sensing: Potentials and Problems.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Kiefer, Ralph W.; Lillesand, Thomas M.

    1983-01-01

    Discusses remote sensing principles and applications and the status and needs of remote sensing education in the United States. A summary of the fundamental policy issues that will determine remote sensing's future role in environmental and resource managements is included. (Author/BC)

  7. 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.

  8. 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.

  9. 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.

  10. 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

  11. 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.

  12. 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.

  13. 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.

  14. 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

  15. 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

  16. Sediment Toxicity Identification Evaluations (TIEs): Manipulating Bioavailability to Whole Organisms to Identify Environmental Toxins

    EPA Science Inventory

    Toxicity tests are a common method for determining whether sediment contaminants represent an environmental risk. Toxicity tests indicate if contaminants in sediments are bioavailable and capable of causing adverse biological effects to whole aquatic organisms. Several environmen...

  17. Identifying environmental risk factors of cholera in a coastal area with geospatial technologies.

    PubMed

    Xu, Min; Cao, Chunxiang; Wang, Duochun; Kan, Biao

    2014-12-29

    Satellites contribute significantly to environmental quality and public health. Environmental factors are important indicators for the prediction of disease outbreaks. This study reveals the environmental factors associated with cholera in Zhejiang, a coastal province of China, using both Remote Sensing (RS) and Geographic information System (GIS). The analysis validated the correlation between the indirect satellite measurements of sea surface temperature (SST), sea surface height (SSH) and ocean chlorophyll concentration (OCC) and the local cholera magnitude based on a ten-year monthly data from the year 1999 to 2008. Cholera magnitude has been strongly affected by the concurrent variables of SST and SSH, while OCC has a one-month time lag effect. A cholera prediction model has been established based on the sea environmental factors. The results of hot spot analysis showed the local cholera magnitude in counties significantly associated with the estuaries and rivers.

  18. Identifying Environmental Risk Factors of Cholera in a Coastal Area with Geospatial Technologies

    PubMed Central

    Xu, Min; Cao, Chunxiang; Wang, Duochun; Kan, Biao

    2014-01-01

    Satellites contribute significantly to environmental quality and public health. Environmental factors are important indicators for the prediction of disease outbreaks. This study reveals the environmental factors associated with cholera in Zhejiang, a coastal province of China, using both Remote Sensing (RS) and Geographic information System (GIS). The analysis validated the correlation between the indirect satellite measurements of sea surface temperature (SST), sea surface height (SSH) and ocean chlorophyll concentration (OCC) and the local cholera magnitude based on a ten-year monthly data from the year 1999 to 2008. Cholera magnitude has been strongly affected by the concurrent variables of SST and SSH, while OCC has a one-month time lag effect. A cholera prediction model has been established based on the sea environmental factors. The results of hot spot analysis showed the local cholera magnitude in counties significantly associated with the estuaries and rivers. PMID:25551518

  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. 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

  1. 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

  2. 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.

  3. 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

  4. Bed and toilet height as potential environmental risk factors.

    PubMed

    Capezuti, Elizabeth; Wagner, Laura; Brush, Barbara L; Boltz, Marie; Renz, Susan; Secic, Michelle

    2008-02-01

    Seat height that is too high (> 120% of lower leg length [LLL]) or too low (< 80% of LLL) can impede safe transfer and result in falls. This study examines the difference between LLL of frail nursing home residents and the height of their toilets and beds in the lowest position, compares the patient or environmental characteristics of those able to transfer from the bed or toilet to those who cannot, and determines the relationship of patient or environmental characteristics to bed-related falls. A retrospective observational design using secondary data from 263 nursing home residents finds that bed height of three fourths of participants was greater than 140% of LLL, whereas toilet height of more than half was 100% to 120% of LLL. Increased fall risk is associated with increased age, shorter length of stay, normal lower extremity range of motion, less cognitive impairment, more behavioral symptoms, and no complaints of pain during exam.

  5. Potential environmental impact of a hydrogen economy on the stratosphere.

    PubMed

    Tromp, Tracey K; Shia, Run-Lie; Allen, Mark; Eiler, John M; Yung, Y L

    2003-06-13

    The widespread use of hydrogen fuel cells could have hitherto unknown environmental impacts due to unintended emissions of molecular hydrogen, including an increase in the abundance of water vapor in the stratosphere (plausibly by as much as approximately 1 part per million by volume). This would cause stratospheric cooling, enhancement of the heterogeneous chemistry that destroys ozone, an increase in noctilucent clouds, and changes in tropospheric chemistry and atmosphere-biosphere interactions.

  6. 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.

  7. 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.

  8. 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.

  9. 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.

  10. 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.

  11. 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.

  12. UMEL: a new regression tool to identify measurement peaks in LIDAR/DIAL systems for environmental physics applications.

    PubMed

    Gelfusa, M; Gaudio, P; Malizia, A; Murari, A; Vega, J; Richetta, M; Gonzalez, S

    2014-06-01

    Recently, surveying large areas in an automatic way, for early detection of both harmful chemical agents and forest fires, has become a strategic objective of defence and public health organisations. The Lidar and Dial techniques are widely recognized as a cost-effective alternative to monitor large portions of the atmosphere. To maximize the effectiveness of the measurements and to guarantee reliable monitoring of large areas, new data analysis techniques are required. In this paper, an original tool, the Universal Multi Event Locator, is applied to the problem of automatically identifying the time location of peaks in Lidar and Dial measurements for environmental physics applications. This analysis technique improves various aspects of the measurements, ranging from the resilience to drift in the laser sources to the increase of the system sensitivity. The method is also fully general, purely software, and can therefore be applied to a large variety of problems without any additional cost. The potential of the proposed technique is exemplified with the help of data of various instruments acquired during several experimental campaigns in the field.

  13. UMEL: A new regression tool to identify measurement peaks in LIDAR/DIAL systems for environmental physics applications

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gelfusa, M.; Gaudio, P.; Malizia, A.; Murari, A.; Vega, J.; Richetta, M.; Gonzalez, S.

    2014-06-01

    Recently, surveying large areas in an automatic way, for early detection of both harmful chemical agents and forest fires, has become a strategic objective of defence and public health organisations. The Lidar and Dial techniques are widely recognized as a cost-effective alternative to monitor large portions of the atmosphere. To maximize the effectiveness of the measurements and to guarantee reliable monitoring of large areas, new data analysis techniques are required. In this paper, an original tool, the Universal Multi Event Locator, is applied to the problem of automatically identifying the time location of peaks in Lidar and Dial measurements for environmental physics applications. This analysis technique improves various aspects of the measurements, ranging from the resilience to drift in the laser sources to the increase of the system sensitivity. The method is also fully general, purely software, and can therefore be applied to a large variety of problems without any additional cost. The potential of the proposed technique is exemplified with the help of data of various instruments acquired during several experimental campaigns in the field.

  14. An Overview of Algae Biofuel Production and Potential Environmental Impact

    EPA Science Inventory

    Algae are among the most potentially significant sources of sustainable biofuels in the future of renewable energy. A feedstock with virtually unlimited applicability, algae can metabolize various waste streams (e.g., municipal wastewater, carbon dioxide from industrial flue gas)...

  15. An investigation of gene-environment interactions between 47 newly identified breast cancer susceptibility loci and environmental risk factors

    PubMed Central

    Rudolph, Anja; Milne, Roger L.; Truong, Thérèse; Knight, Julia A.; Seibold, Petra; Flesch-Janys, Dieter; Behrens, Sabine; Eilber, Ursula; Bolla, Manjeet K.; Wang, Qin; Dennis, Joe; Dunning, Alison M.; Shah, Mitul; Munday, Hannah R.; Darabi, Hatef; Eriksson, Mikael; Brand, Judith S.; Olson, Janet; Vachon, Celine M.; Hallberg, Emily; Castelao, J. Esteban; Carracedo, Angel; Torres, Maria; Li, Jingmei; Humphreys, Keith; Cordina-Duverger, Emilie; Menegaux, Florence; Flyger, Henrik; Nordestgaard, Børge G.; Nielsen, Sune F.; Yesilyurt, Betul T.; Floris, Giuseppe; Leunen, Karin; Engelhardt, Ellen G.; Broeks, Annegien; Rutgers, Emiel J.; Glendon, Gord; Mulligan, Anna Marie; Cross, Simon; Reed, Malcolm; Gonzalez-Neira, Anna; Perez, José Ignacio Arias; Provenzano, Elena; Apicella, Carmel; Southey, Melissa C.; Spurdle, Amanda; Investigators, kConFab; Group, AOCS; Häberle, Lothar; Beckmann, Matthias W.; Ekici, Arif B.; Dieffenbach, Aida Karina; Arndt, Volker; Stegmaier, Christa; McLean, Catriona; Baglietto, Laura; Chanock, Stephen J.; Lissowska, Jolanta; Sherman, Mark E.; Brüning, Thomas; Hamann, Ute; Ko, Yon-Dschun; Orr, Nick; Schoemaker, Minouk; Ashworth, Alan; Kosma, Veli-Matti; Kataja, Vesa; Hartikainen, Jaana M.; Mannermaa, Arto; Swerdlow, Anthony; Giles, Graham G.; Brenner, Hermann; Fasching, Peter A.; Chenevix-Trench, Georgia; Hopper, John; Benítez, Javier; Cox, Angela; Andrulis, Irene L.; Lambrechts, Diether; Gago-Dominguez, Manuela; Couch, Fergus; Czene, Kamila; Bojesen, Stig E.; Easton, Doug F.; Schmidt, Marjanka K.; Guénel, Pascal; Hall, Per; Pharoah, Paul D. P.; Garcia-Closas, Montserrat; Chang-Claude, Jenny

    2014-01-01

    A large genotyping project within the Breast Cancer Association Consortium (BCAC) recently identified 41 associations between single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) and overall breast cancer (BC) risk. We investigated whether the effects of these 41 SNPs, as well as six SNPs associated with estrogen receptor (ER) negative BC risk are modified by 13 environmental risk factors for BC. Data from 22 studies participating in BCAC were pooled, comprising up to 26,633 cases and 30,119 controls. Interactions between SNPs and environmental factors were evaluated using an empirical Bayes-type shrinkage estimator. Six SNPs showed interactions with associated p-values (pint) <1.1×10−3. None of the observed interactions was significant after accounting for multiple testing. The Bayesian False Discovery Probability was used to rank the findings, which indicated three interactions as being noteworthy at 1% prior probability of interaction. SNP rs6828523 was associated with increased ER-negative BC risk in women ≥170cm (OR=1.22, p=0.017), but inversely associated with ER-negative BC risk in women <160cm (OR=0.83, p=0.039, pint=1.9×10−4). The inverse association between rs4808801 and overall BC risk was stronger for women who had had four or more pregnancies (OR=0.85, p=2.0×10−4), and absent in women who had had just one (OR=0.96, p=0.19, pint = 6.1×10−4). SNP rs11242675 was inversely associated with overall BC risk in never/former smokers (OR=0.93, p=2.8×10−5), but no association was observed in current smokers (OR=1.07, p=0.14, pint = 3.4×10−4). In conclusion, recently identified breast cancer susceptibility loci are not strongly modified by established risk factors and the observed potential interactions require confirmation in independent studies. PMID:25227710

  16. Investigation of gene-environment interactions between 47 newly identified breast cancer susceptibility loci and environmental risk factors.

    PubMed

    Rudolph, Anja; Milne, Roger L; Truong, Thérèse; Knight, Julia A; Seibold, Petra; Flesch-Janys, Dieter; Behrens, Sabine; Eilber, Ursula; Bolla, Manjeet K; Wang, Qin; Dennis, Joe; Dunning, Alison M; Shah, Mitul; Munday, Hannah R; Darabi, Hatef; Eriksson, Mikael; Brand, Judith S; Olson, Janet; Vachon, Celine M; Hallberg, Emily; Castelao, J Esteban; Carracedo, Angel; Torres, Maria; Li, Jingmei; Humphreys, Keith; Cordina-Duverger, Emilie; Menegaux, Florence; Flyger, Henrik; Nordestgaard, Børge G; Nielsen, Sune F; Yesilyurt, Betul T; Floris, Giuseppe; Leunen, Karin; Engelhardt, Ellen G; Broeks, Annegien; Rutgers, Emiel J; Glendon, Gord; Mulligan, Anna Marie; Cross, Simon; Reed, Malcolm; Gonzalez-Neira, Anna; Arias Perez, José Ignacio; Provenzano, Elena; Apicella, Carmel; Southey, Melissa C; Spurdle, Amanda; Häberle, Lothar; Beckmann, Matthias W; Ekici, Arif B; Dieffenbach, Aida Karina; Arndt, Volker; Stegmaier, Christa; McLean, Catriona; Baglietto, Laura; Chanock, Stephen J; Lissowska, Jolanta; Sherman, Mark E; Brüning, Thomas; Hamann, Ute; Ko, Yon-Dschun; Orr, Nick; Schoemaker, Minouk; Ashworth, Alan; Kosma, Veli-Matti; Kataja, Vesa; Hartikainen, Jaana M; Mannermaa, Arto; Swerdlow, Anthony; Giles, Graham G; Brenner, Hermann; Fasching, Peter A; Chenevix-Trench, Georgia; Hopper, John; Benítez, Javier; Cox, Angela; Andrulis, Irene L; Lambrechts, Diether; Gago-Dominguez, Manuela; Couch, Fergus; Czene, Kamila; Bojesen, Stig E; Easton, Doug F; Schmidt, Marjanka K; Guénel, Pascal; Hall, Per; Pharoah, Paul D P; Garcia-Closas, Montserrat; Chang-Claude, Jenny

    2015-03-15

    A large genotyping project within the Breast Cancer Association Consortium (BCAC) recently identified 41 associations between single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) and overall breast cancer (BC) risk. We investigated whether the effects of these 41 SNPs, as well as six SNPs associated with estrogen receptor (ER) negative BC risk are modified by 13 environmental risk factors for BC. Data from 22 studies participating in BCAC were pooled, comprising up to 26,633 cases and 30,119 controls. Interactions between SNPs and environmental factors were evaluated using an empirical Bayes-type shrinkage estimator. Six SNPs showed interactions with associated p-values (pint ) <1.1 × 10(-3) . None of the observed interactions was significant after accounting for multiple testing. The Bayesian False Discovery Probability was used to rank the findings, which indicated three interactions as being noteworthy at 1% prior probability of interaction. SNP rs6828523 was associated with increased ER-negative BC risk in women ≥170 cm (OR = 1.22, p = 0.017), but inversely associated with ER-negative BC risk in women <160 cm (OR = 0.83, p = 0.039, pint = 1.9 × 10(-4) ). The inverse association between rs4808801 and overall BC risk was stronger for women who had had four or more pregnancies (OR = 0.85, p = 2.0 × 10(-4) ), and absent in women who had had just one (OR = 0.96, p = 0.19, pint = 6.1 × 10(-4) ). SNP rs11242675 was inversely associated with overall BC risk in never/former smokers (OR = 0.93, p = 2.8 × 10(-5) ), but no association was observed in current smokers (OR = 1.07, p = 0.14, pint = 3.4 × 10(-4) ). In conclusion, recently identified BC susceptibility loci are not strongly modified by established risk factors and the observed potential interactions require confirmation in independent studies.

  17. Using Canonical Correlation Analysis to Identify Environmental Attitude Groups: Considerations for National Forest Planning in the Southwestern U.S.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Prera, Alejandro J.; Grimsrud, Kristine M.; Thacher, Jennifer A.; McCollum, Dan W.; Berrens, Robert P.

    2014-10-01

    As public land management agencies pursue region-specific resource management plans, with meaningful consideration of public attitudes and values, there is a need to characterize the complex mix of environmental attitudes in a diverse population. The contribution of this investigation is to make use of a unique household, mail/internet survey data set collected in 2007 in the Southwestern United States (Region 3 of the U.S. Forest Service). With over 5,800 survey responses to a set of 25 Public Land Value statements, canonical correlation analysis is able to identify 7 statistically distinct environmental attitudinal groups. We also examine the effect of expected changes in regional demographics on overall environmental attitudes, which may help guide in the development of socially acceptable long-term forest management policies. Results show significant support for conservationist management policies and passive environmental values, as well as a greater role for stakeholder groups in generating consensus for current and future forest management policies.

  18. Nanoparticles: Their potential toxicity, waste and environmental management

    SciTech Connect

    Bystrzejewska-Piotrowska, Grazyna Golimowski, Jerzy; Urban, Pawel L.

    2009-09-15

    This literature review discusses specific issues related to handling of waste containing nanomaterials. The aims are (1) to highlight problems related to uncontrolled release of nanoparticles to the environment through waste disposal, and (2) to introduce the topics of nanowaste and nanotoxicology to the waste management community. Many nanoparticles used by industry contain heavy metals, thus toxicity and bioaccumulation of heavy metals contained in nanoparticles may become important environmental issues. Although bioavailability of heavy metals contained in nanoparticles can be lower than those present in soluble form, the toxicity resulting from their intrinsic nature (e.g. their size, shape or density) may be significant. An approach to the treatment of nanowaste requires understanding of all its properties - not only chemical, but also physical and biological. Progress in nanowaste management also requires studies of the environmental impact of the new materials. The authors believe Amara's law is applicable to the impact of nanotechnologies, and society might overestimate the short-term effects of these technologies, while underestimating the long-term effects. It is necessary to have basic information from companies about the level and nature of nanomaterials produced or emitted and about the expectation of the life cycle time of nanoproducts as a basis to estimate the level of nanowaste in the future. Without knowing how companies plan to use and store recycled and nonrecycled nanomaterials, development of regulations is difficult. Tagging of nanoproducts is proposed as a means to facilitate separation and recovery of nanomaterials.

  19. Potential applications of environmental sampling and analysis for the IAEA

    SciTech Connect

    Raber, E.

    1993-03-01

    This objective of this paper is to address the usefulness of envirorunental sampling and analysis in support of the IAEA. In particular, whether state-of-the-art analytical methods may provide detection of undeclared nuclear activities. It is important to emphasize that envirorunental sampling offers the IAEA a method of improving the assurance that a particular facility has no ongoing undeclared nuclear activities. It is suggested as a supplement to the existing IAEA safeguards inspections and activities. Enviromental sampling with appropriate analytical techniques can detect unknown activity fairly well, but it is not very reliable for determining how much or when activity has actually occured. Additionally, it is important to point out that the cost of such an envirorunental sampling program needs to be balanced with the confidence provided to detect undeclared nuclear activities. Environmental sampling wig probably not allow the IAEA to reduce or eliminate some of its existing baseline activities. The addition of an environmental sampling and analysis program will entail a cost of its own, and adding such a program may not reduce IAEA total costs. The overall cost of such a program will depend on the level of confidence required, (e.g. number and type of samples and analyses), the Quality Assurance plan to be implemented and the number of sites to be inspected. A more detailed cost analysis is not within the scope of this paper.

  20. 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

  1. 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

  2. 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.

  3. 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.

  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. RNA-Based Methods Increase the Detection of Fecal Bacteria and Fecal Identifiers in Environmental Waters

    EPA Science Inventory

    We evaluated the use of qPCR RNA-based methods in the detection of fecal bacteria in environmental waters. We showed that RNA methods can increase the detection of fecal bacteria in multiple water matrices. The data suggest that this is a viable alternative for the detection of a...

  7. Mercury from mineral deposits and potential environmental impact

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Rytuba, J.J.

    2003-01-01

    Mercury deposits are globally distributed in 26 mercury mineral belts. Three types of mercury deposits occur in these belts: silica-carbonate, hot-spring, and Almaden. Mercury is also produced as a by-product from several types of gold-silver and massive sulfide deposits, which account for 5% of the world's production. Other types of mineral deposits can be enriched in mercury and mercury phases present are dependent on deposit type. During processing of mercury ores, secondary mercury phases form and accumulate in mine wastes. These phases are more soluble than cinnabar, the primary ore mineral, and cause mercury deposits to impact the environment more so than other types of ore deposits enriched in mercury. Release and transport of mercury from mine wastes occur primarily as mercury-enriched particles and colloids. Production from mercury deposits has decreased because of environmental concerns, but by-product production from other mercury-enriched mineral deposits remains important.

  8. 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

  9. Potential environmental effects of pack stock on meadow ecosystems of the Sierra Nevada, USA

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Ostoja, Steven M.; Brooks, Matthew L.; Moore, Peggy E.; Berlow, Eric L.; Robert Blank,; Roche, Jim; Chase, Jennifer T.; Sylvia Haultain,

    2014-01-01

    Pack and saddle stock, including, but not limited to domesticated horses, mules, and burros, are used to support commercial, private and administrative activities in the Sierra Nevada. The use of pack stock has become a contentious and litigious issue for land management agencies in the region inter alia due to concerns over effects on the environment. The potential environmental effects of pack stock on Sierra Nevada meadow ecosystems are reviewed and it is concluded that the use of pack stock has the potential to influence the following: (1) water nutrient dynamics, sedimentation, temperature, and microbial pathogen content; (2) soil chemistry, nutrient cycling, soil compaction and hydrology; (3) plant individuals, populations and community dynamics, non-native invasive species, and encroachment of woody species; and (4) wildlife individuals, populations and communities. It is considered from currently available information that management objectives of pack stock should include the following: minimise bare ground, maximise plant cover, maintain species composition of native plants, minimise trampling, especially on wet soils and stream banks, and minimise direct urination and defecation by pack stock into water. However, incomplete documentation of patterns of pack stock use and limited past research limits current understanding of the effects of pack stock, especially their effects on water, soils and wildlife. To improve management of pack stock in this region, research is needed on linking measurable monitoring variables (e.g. plant cover) with environmental relevancy (e.g. soil erosion processes, wildlife habitat use), and identifying specific environmental thresholds of degradation along gradients of pack stock use in Sierra Nevada meadows.

  10. Transglutaminases in Dysbiosis As Potential Environmental Drivers of Autoimmunity

    PubMed Central

    Lerner, Aaron; Aminov, Rustam; Matthias, Torsten

    2017-01-01

    Protein-glutamine γ-glutamyltransferases (transglutaminases, Tgs) belong to the class of transferases. They catalyze the formation of an isopeptide bond between the acyl group at the end of the side chain of protein- or peptide-bound glutamine residues and the first order 𝜀-amine groups of protein- or peptide-bound lysine. The Tgs are considered to be universal protein cross-linkers, and they play an essential role in a number of human diseases. In this review, we discuss mainly the bacterial Tgs in terms of the functionality of the enzymes and a potential role they may play in bacterial survival. Since microbial transglutaminases (mTgs) are functionally similar to the human homologs, they may be involved in the human disease provocation. We suggest here a potential involvement of Tgs in the pathologies such as autoimmune diseases. In this hypothesis, the endogenous mTgs that are secreted by the gut microbiota, especially in a dysbiotic configuration, are potential drivers of systemic autoimmunity, via the enzymatic posttranslational modification of peptides in the gut lumen. These mTg activities directed toward cross-linking of naïve proteins can potentially generate neo-epitopes that are not only immunogenic but may also activate some immune response cascades leading to the pathological autoimmune processes. PMID:28174571

  11. Potential health and environmental effects of trace elements and radionuclides from increased coal utilization.

    PubMed Central

    Van Hook, R I

    1979-01-01

    This report addresses the effects of coal-derived trace and radioactive elements. A summary of our current understanding of health and environmental effects of trace and radioactive elements released during coal mining, cleaning, combustion, and ash disposal is presented. Physical and biological transport phenomena which are important in determining organism exposure are also discussed. Biological concentration and transformation as well as synergistic and antagonistic actions among trace contaminants are discussed in terms of their importance in mobility, persistence, availability, and ultimate toxicity. The consequences of implementing the President's National Energy Plan are considered in terms of the impact of the NEP in 1985 and 2000 on the potential effects of trace and radioactive elements from the coal fuel cycle. Areas of needed research are identified in specific recommendations. PMID:540619

  12. 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.

  13. 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.

  14. 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.

  15. 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.

  16. 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.

  17. 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.

  18. 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.

  19. 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.

  20. Environmental Niche Modelling of Phlebotomine Sand Flies and Cutaneous Leishmaniasis Identifies Lutzomyia intermedia as the Main Vector Species in Southeastern Brazil

    PubMed Central

    Meneguzzi, Viviane Coutinho; dos Santos, Claudiney Biral; Leite, Gustavo Rocha; Fux, Blima; Falqueto, Aloísio

    2016-01-01

    Cutaneous leishmaniasis (CL) is caused by a protozoan of the genus Leishmania and is transmitted by sand flies. The state of Espírito Santo (ES), an endemic area in southeast Brazil, has shown a considerably high prevalence in recent decades. Environmental niche modelling (ENM) is a useful tool for predicting potential disease risk. In this study, ENM was applied to sand fly species and CL cases in ES to identify the principal vector and risk areas of the disease. Sand flies were collected in 466 rural localities between 1997 and 2013 using active and passive capture. Insects were identified to the species level, and the localities were georeferenced. Twenty-one bioclimatic variables were selected from WorldClim. Maxent was used to construct models projecting the potential distribution for five Lutzomyia species and CL cases. ENMTools was used to overlap the species and the CL case models. The Kruskal–Wallis test was performed, adopting a 5% significance level. Approximately 250,000 specimens were captured, belonging to 43 species. The area under the curve (AUC) was considered acceptable for all models. The slope was considered relevant to the construction of the models for all the species identified. The overlay test identified Lutzomyia intermedia as the main vector of CL in southeast Brazil. ENM tools enable an analysis of the association among environmental variables, vector distributions and CL cases, which can be used to support epidemiologic and entomological vigilance actions to control the expansion of CL in vulnerable areas. PMID:27783641

  1. THE USE OF SPATIAL ANALYTICAL TECHNIQUES TO IDENTIFY POTENTIAL BROWNFIELDS SITES

    EPA Science Inventory

    Brownfields are abandoned, idled, or underutilized properties where expansion or redevelopment is complicated by real or perceived environmental contamination. Most Brownfields sites are located in urban, commercial, and industrial areas. Under the Brownfields Program, the United...

  2. Environmental Trigger(s) of Type 1 Diabetes: Why So Difficult to Identify?

    PubMed Central

    2015-01-01

    Type 1 diabetes (T1D) is one of the most common chronic diseases with childhood onset, and the disease has increased two- to fivefold over the past half century by as yet unknown means. T1D occurs when the body's immune system turns against itself so that, in a very specific and targeted way, it destroys the pancreatic β-cells. T1D results from poorly defined interactions between susceptibility genes and environmental determinants. In contrast to the rapid progress in finding T1D genes, identification and confirmation of environmental determinants remain a formidable challenge. This review article will focus on factors which have to be evaluated and decision to take before starting a new prospective cohort study. Considering all the large ongoing prospective studies, new and more conclusive data than that obtained so far should instead come from international collaboration on the ongoing cohort studies. PMID:25883954

  3. Identifying the Environmental Conditions Favouring West Nile Virus Outbreaks in Europe

    PubMed Central

    Metz, Markus; Rosà, Roberto; Marini, Giovanni; Chadwick, Elizabeth; Neteler, Markus

    2015-01-01

    West Nile Virus (WNV) is a globally important mosquito borne virus, with significant implications for human and animal health. The emergence and spread of new lineages, and increased pathogenicity, is the cause of escalating public health concern. Pinpointing the environmental conditions that favour WNV circulation and transmission to humans is challenging, due both to the complexity of its biological cycle, and the under-diagnosis and reporting of epidemiological data. Here, we used remote sensing and GIS to enable collation of multiple types of environmental data over a continental spatial scale, in order to model annual West Nile Fever (WNF) incidence across Europe and neighbouring countries. Multi-model selection and inference were used to gain a consensus from multiple linear mixed models. Climate and landscape were key predictors of WNF outbreaks (specifically, high precipitation in late winter/early spring, high summer temperatures, summer drought, occurrence of irrigated croplands and highly fragmented forests). Identification of the environmental conditions associated with WNF outbreaks is key to enabling public health bodies to properly focus surveillance and mitigation of West Nile virus impact, but more work needs to be done to enable accurate predictions of WNF risk. PMID:25803814

  4. Identifying the environmental conditions favouring West Nile Virus outbreaks in Europe.

    PubMed

    Marcantonio, Matteo; Rizzoli, Annapaola; Metz, Markus; Rosà, Roberto; Marini, Giovanni; Chadwick, Elizabeth; Neteler, Markus

    2015-01-01

    West Nile Virus (WNV) is a globally important mosquito borne virus, with significant implications for human and animal health. The emergence and spread of new lineages, and increased pathogenicity, is the cause of escalating public health concern. Pinpointing the environmental conditions that favour WNV circulation and transmission to humans is challenging, due both to the complexity of its biological cycle, and the under-diagnosis and reporting of epidemiological data. Here, we used remote sensing and GIS to enable collation of multiple types of environmental data over a continental spatial scale, in order to model annual West Nile Fever (WNF) incidence across Europe and neighbouring countries. Multi-model selection and inference were used to gain a consensus from multiple linear mixed models. Climate and landscape were key predictors of WNF outbreaks (specifically, high precipitation in late winter/early spring, high summer temperatures, summer drought, occurrence of irrigated croplands and highly fragmented forests). Identification of the environmental conditions associated with WNF outbreaks is key to enabling public health bodies to properly focus surveillance and mitigation of West Nile virus impact, but more work needs to be done to enable accurate predictions of WNF risk.

  5. Identifying the groundwater basin boundaries, using environmental isotopes: a case study

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Demiroğlu, Muhterem

    2016-12-01

    Groundwater, which is renewable under current climatic conditions separately from other natural sources, in fact is a finite resource in terms of quality and fossil groundwater. Researchers have long emphasized the necessity of exploiting, operating, conserving and managing groundwater in an efficient and sustainable manner with an integrated water management approach. The management of groundwater needs reliable information about changes on groundwater quantity and quality. Environmental isotopes are the most important tools to provide this support. No matter which method we use to calculate the groundwater budget and flow equations, we need to determine boundary conditions or the physical boundaries of the domain. The Groundwater divide line or basin boundaries that separate the two adjacent basin recharge areas from each other must be drawn correctly to be successful in defining complex groundwater basin boundary conditions. Environmental isotope data, as well as other methods provide support for determining recharge areas of the aquifers, especially for karst aquifers, residence time and interconnections between aquifer systems. This study demonstrates the use of environmental isotope data to interpret and correct groundwater basin boundaries giving as an example the Yeniçıkrı basin within the main Sakarya basin.

  6. Optoelectronic methods in potential application in monitoring of environmental conditions

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mularczyk-Oliwa, Monika; Bombalska, Aneta; Kwaśny, Mirosław; Kopczyński, Krzysztof; Włodarski, Maksymilian; Kaliszewski, Miron; Kostecki, Jerzy

    2016-12-01

    Allergic rhinitis, also known as hay fever is a type of inflammation which occurs when the immune system overreacts to allergens in the air. It became the most common disease among people. It became important to monitor air content for the presence of a particular type of allergen. For the purposes of environmental monitoring there is a need to widen the group of traditional methods of identification of pollen for faster and more accurate research systems. The aim of the work was the characterization and classification of certain types of plant pollens by using laser optical methods, which were supported by the chemmometrics. Several species of pollen were examined, for which a database of spectral characteristics was created, using LIF, Raman scattering and FTIR methods. Spectral database contains characteristics of both common allergens and pollen of minor importance. Based on registered spectra, statistical analysis was made, which allows the classification of the tested pollen species. For the study of the emission spectra Nd:YAG laser was used with the fourth harmonic generation (266 nm) and GaN diode laser (375 nm). For Raman scattering spectra spectrometer Nicolet IS-50 with a excitation wavelength of 1064 nm was used. The FTIR spectra, recorded in the mid infrared1 range (4000-650 cm-1) were collected with use of transmission mode (KBr pellet), ATR and DRIFT.

  7. Potential impact of environmental bacteriophages in spreading antibiotic resistance genes.

    PubMed

    Muniesa, Maite; Colomer-Lluch, Marta; Jofre, Juan

    2013-06-01

    The idea that bacteriophage transduction plays a role in the horizontal transfer of antibiotic resistance genes is gaining momentum. Such transduction might be vital in horizontal transfer from environmental to human body-associated biomes and here we review many lines of evidence supporting this notion. It is well accepted that bacteriophages are the most abundant entities in most environments, where they have been shown to be quite persistent. This fact, together with the ability of many phages to infect bacteria belonging to different taxa, makes them suitable vehicles for gene transfer. Metagenomic studies confirm that substantial percentages of the bacteriophage particles present in most environments contain bacterial genes, including mobile genetic elements and antibiotic resistance genes. When specific genes of resistance to antibiotics are detected by real-time PCR in the bacteriophage populations of different environments, only tenfold lower numbers of these genes are observed, compared with those found in the corresponding bacterial populations. In addition, the antibiotic resistance genes from these bacteriophages are functional and generate resistance to the bacteria when these genes are transfected. Finally, reports about the transduction of antibiotic resistance genes are on the increase.

  8. Potential environmental functions of widespread, abundant, uncultured marine archaea

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lloyd, K. G.; Schreiber, L.; Petersen, D. G.; Schramm, A.; Jorgensen, B.

    2012-12-01

    The vast majority of marine subsurface microorganisms are uncultivated, and therefore have unknown metabolisms. Much of the prokaryotes present in the marine subsurface are archaea, and, in turn, much of the archaea fall into the Miscellaneous Crenarchaeotal Group. These organisms are widely distributed globally and are phylogenetically diverse, comprising 17 distinct subgroups, defined by 16S rRNA genes (Kubo et al. 2012). The subgroups do not seem to have any well-defined environmental distribution (i.e., they are all present in different types of marine and terrestrial environments). However, the abundance of sequences from a certain environment type differs among subgroups, and may provide clues to their role in these environments. We sequenced the genome of a single cell of MCG extracted directly from marine sediments. Although coverage was low (~30%), the data quality was high. Conserved genes show that MCG is deeply branching within the newly named "Thaumarchaeota", and contains a complete pathway for the degradation or extracellular proteins. A further search through metagenomic data shows that this process may be widespread in marine sediments. We hypothesize that MCG archaea may be important in anaerobic protein decomposition in marine sediments. Reference Kubo et al., 2012. Archaea of the Miscellaneous Crenarchaeotal Group (MCG) are abundant, diverse, and widespread in marine sediments. ISME Journal, in press, doi:10.1038/ismej.2012.37.

  9. 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

  10. 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

  11. 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

  12. Miniaturized redox potential probe for in situ environmental monitoring.

    PubMed

    Jang, Am; Lee, Jin-Hwan; Bhadri, Prashant R; Kumar, Suresh A; Timmons, William; Beyette, Fred R; Papautsky, Ian; Bishop, Paul L

    2005-08-15

    The need for accurate, robust in situ microscale monitoring of oxidation-reduction potentials (ORP) is required for continuous soil pore water quality monitoring. We are developing a suite of self-contained microelectrodes that can be used in the environment, such as at Superfund sites, to monitor ORP in contaminated soils and sediments. This paper presents details on our development of microelectrode sensor arrays for ORP measurements. The electrochemical performance of these ORP electrodes was fully characterized by measuring redox potentials in standard solutions. It found that the newly developed integrated ORP microelectrodes produced a very stable voltage response (the corresponding rate of the integrated microelectrode potential change was in the range of 0.6-1.1 mV/min), even when the measurement was carried out outside of a Faraday cage where signals from most conventional microelectrodes are usually inhibited by external electrical nose. These new microelectrodes were easier to fabricate and were more robust than conventional microelectrodes. The tip size of the integrated ORP microelectrode was approximately 200 nm square, with a taper angle of approximately 20 degrees and a length of 57 microm. The integrated ORP microelectrode exhibited better signal stability and substantially shorter response times (from less than a few milliseconds to 30 s, depending on the standard solution used) than the commercial millielectrode (a few minutes). Compared with the slope of the commercial millelectrode, the slope of the integrated microelectrode (61.5 mV/pH) was closerto the ideal slope against quinhydrone calibration solutions. Therefore, it is to be expected that the newly developed ORP microelectrode may have wider applications in contaminated soils, biofilms, and sediments.

  13. 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

  14. 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.

  15. 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

  16. 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

  17. 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

  18. 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.

  19. Triclosan: Current Status, Occurrence, Environmental Risks and Bioaccumulation Potential

    PubMed Central

    Dhillon, Gurpreet Singh; Kaur, Surinder; Pulicharla, Rama; Brar, Satinder Kaur; Cledón, Maximiliano; Verma, Mausam; Surampalli, Rao Y.

    2015-01-01

    Triclosan (TCS) is a multi-purpose antimicrobial agent used as a common ingredient in everyday household personal care and consumer products. The expanded use of TCS provides a number of pathways for the compound to enter the environment and it has been detected in sewage treatment plant effluents; surface; ground and drinking water. The physico-chemical properties indicate the bioaccumulation and persistence potential of TCS in the environment. Hence, there is an increasing concern about the presence of TCS in the environment and its potential negative effects on human and animal health. Nevertheless, scarce monitoring data could be one reason for not prioritizing TCS as emerging contaminant. Conventional water and wastewater treatment processes are unable to completely remove the TCS and even form toxic intermediates. Considering the worldwide application of personal care products containing TCS and inefficient removal and its toxic effects on aquatic organisms, the compound should be considered on the priority list of emerging contaminants and its utilization in all products should be regulated. PMID:26006133

  20. Intimations of the Potential Environmental Impact of Urbanization

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wolman, M. G.

    2006-05-01

    Roughly fifty years ago the hydrologic literature began to reflect growing recognition of the potential impact of urbanization on the environment. Documented impacts ranged from the urban heat island of several degrees Fahrenheit to doubling of the cross-sectional area of urban stream channels. Observers noted a broad spectrum of changes. Peak stages of small floods increased along with their volume and frequency. Increasing direct runoff was accompanied by decreasing elevation of the groundwater table. As the impermeable surface of streets and roof tops expands, sediment concentration declines as bank erosion, not the land surface, becomes the dominant source of supply. Runoff from streets and storm drains in places proved to be comparable to effluent from secondary treatment plants often containing pathogens as well as organics, salts, and metals. Ameliorating or reversing the negative hydrologic impacts has proven difficult. Creative design encompassing channel morphology and the scaling and disposition of reservoirs is the requisite mantra, not restoration. Unfortunately, hierarchical drainage nets and random spatial and temporal characteristics of precipitation events are generally incompatible with sequential land development and equity in storage requirements for individual parcels of land. Nevertheless, in the last half-century the image of urban rivers has been transformed from drainage ditch to potential aesthetic treasure.

  1. Triclosan: current status, occurrence, environmental risks and bioaccumulation potential.

    PubMed

    Dhillon, Gurpreet Singh; Kaur, Surinder; Pulicharla, Rama; Brar, Satinder Kaur; Cledón, Maximiliano; Verma, Mausam; Surampalli, Rao Y

    2015-05-22

    Triclosan (TCS) is a multi-purpose antimicrobial agent used as a common ingredient in everyday household personal care and consumer products. The expanded use of TCS provides a number of pathways for the compound to enter the environment and it has been detected in sewage treatment plant effluents; surface; ground and drinking water. The physico-chemical properties indicate the bioaccumulation and persistence potential of TCS in the environment. Hence, there is an increasing concern about the presence of TCS in the environment and its potential negative effects on human and animal health. Nevertheless, scarce monitoring data could be one reason for not prioritizing TCS as emerging contaminant. Conventional water and wastewater treatment processes are unable to completely remove the TCS and even form toxic intermediates. Considering the worldwide application of personal care products containing TCS and inefficient removal and its toxic effects on aquatic organisms, the compound should be considered on the priority list of emerging contaminants and its utilization in all products should be regulated.

  2. Gauging the Potential of Socially Critical Environmental Education (EE): Examining Local Environmental Problems through Children's Perspective

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Tsoubaris, Dimitris; Georgopoulos, Aleksandros

    2013-01-01

    The objective of this qualitative research work is to detect the needs, aspirations and feelings of pupils experiencing local environmental problems and elaborate them through the prism of a socially critical educational approach. Semi-structured focus group interviews are used as a research method applied to four primary schools located near…

  3. 40 CFR Table 5 to Subpart Jj of... - List of VHAP of Potential Concern Identified by Industry

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2014 CFR

    2014-07-01

    ... by Industry CAS No. Chemical name EPA de minimis, tons/yr 68122 Dimethyl formamide 1.0 50000 Formaldehyde 0.2 75092 Methylene chloride 4.0 79469 2-Nitropropane 1.0 78591 Isophorone 0.7 1000425 Styrene... Identified by Industry 5 Table 5 to Subpart JJ of Part 63 Protection of Environment ENVIRONMENTAL...

  4. 40 CFR Table 5 to Subpart Jj of... - List of VHAP of Potential Concern Identified by Industry

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2010 CFR

    2010-07-01

    ... by Industry CAS No. Chemical name EPA de minimis, tons/yr 68122 Dimethyl formamide 1.0 50000 Formaldehyde 0.2 75092 Methylene chloride 4.0 79469 2-Nitropropane 1.0 78591 Isophorone 0.7 1000425 Styrene... Identified by Industry 5 Table 5 to Subpart JJ of Part 63 Protection of Environment ENVIRONMENTAL...

  5. Sources of Environmental Risk to Human Populations Across the Caribbean: Potential Use of Remote Sensing

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Jevtic, M.; Vorosmarty, C. J.

    2012-12-01

    To support the well-being of the society, people rely on the environment for wide variety of resources and services, among which are those that provide protection from climate extremes and other natural hazards. Degraded ecosystems and loss of such services can have catastrophic effects on humanity. In order to prevent damage and loss, timely response is necessary when extreme weather and hazardous events occur, and, therefore, reliable monitoring, early warning, and strategic planning systems are needed. To do so requires first an identification of the critical geophysical and socioeconomic sources of environmental risk to human populations. In our study we focus on the Caribbean region and analyze more than 80 variables over the period from 1968 to 2011. Systematic linear and multiple linear regression analyses have shown that a combination of both physical and social science variables results in the highest risk and that areas where ecosystems are stressed are subject to higher threats. We have identified the critical components of risk: population density, GDP, forest area, permanent cropland and average yearly precipitation as the best indicators of potential damage. These variables hold the potential for being monitored through high resolution satellite imagery and data and we explore its potential use in the strategic planning context of weather-related hazards reduction.

  6. Evaluating environmental modeling and sampling data with biomarker data to identify sources and routes of exposure

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Shin, Hyeong-Moo; McKone, Thomas E.; Bennett, Deborah H.

    2013-04-01

    Exposure to environmental chemicals results from multiple sources, environmental media, and exposure routes. Ideally, modeled exposures should be compared to biomonitoring data. This study compares the magnitude and variation of modeled polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs) exposures resulting from emissions to outdoor and indoor air and estimated exposure inferred from biomarker levels. Outdoor emissions result in both inhalation and food-based exposures. We modeled PAH intake doses using U.S. EPA's 2002 National Air Toxics Assessment (NATA) county-level emissions data for outdoor inhalation, the CalTOX model for food ingestion (based on NATA emissions), and indoor air concentrations from field studies for indoor inhalation. We then compared the modeled intake with the measured urine levels of hydroxy-PAH metabolites from the 2001-2002 National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey (NHANES) survey as quantifiable human intake of PAH parent-compounds. Lognormal probability plots of modeled intakes and estimated intakes inferred from biomarkers suggest that a primary route of exposure to naphthalene, fluorene, and phenanthrene for the U.S. population is likely inhalation from indoor sources. For benzo(a)pyrene, the predominant exposure route is likely from food ingestion resulting from multi-pathway transport and bioaccumulation due to outdoor emissions. Multiple routes of exposure are important for pyrene. We also considered the sensitivity of the predicted exposure to the proportion of the total naphthalene production volume emitted to the indoor environment. The comparison of PAH biomarkers with exposure variability estimated from models and sample data for various exposure pathways supports that both indoor and outdoor models are needed to capture the sources and routes of exposure to environmental contaminants.

  7. Identifying determinants of Oncomelania hupensis habitats and assessing the effects of environmental control strategies in the plain regions with the waterway network of China at the microscale.

    PubMed

    Qiu, Juan; Li, Rendong; Xu, Xingjian; Yu, Chuanhua; Xia, Xin; Hong, Xicheng; Chang, Bianrong; Yi, Fengjia; Shi, Yuanyuan

    2014-06-01

    This study aims to identify the landscape ecological determinants related to Oncomelania hupensis distribution, map the potential high risk of O. hupensis habitats at the microscale, and assess the effects of two environmental control strategies. Sampling was performed on 242 snail sites and 726 non-snail sites throughout Qianjiang City, Hubei Province, China. An integrated approach of landscape pattern analysis coupled with multiple logistic regression modeling was applied to investigate the effects of environmental factors on snail habitats. The risk probability of snail habitats positively correlated with patch fractal dimension (FD), paddy farm land proportion, and wetness index but inversely correlated with categorized normalized difference vegetation index (NDVI) and elevation. These findings indicate that FD can identify irregular features (e.g., irrigation ditches) in plain regions and that a moderate NDVI increases the microscale risk probability. Basing on the observed determinants, we predicted a map showing high-risk areas of snail habitats and simulated the effects of conduit hardening and paddy farming land rotation to dry farming land. The two approaches were confirmed effective for snail control. These findings provide an empirical basis for health professionals in local schistosomiasis control stations to identify priority areas and promising environmental control strategies for snail control and prevention.

  8. Identifying Determinants of Oncomelania hupensis Habitats and Assessing the Effects of Environmental Control Strategies in the Plain Regions with the Waterway Network of China at the Microscale

    PubMed Central

    Qiu, Juan; Li, Rendong; Xu, Xingjian; Yu, Chuanhua; Xia, Xin; Hong, Xicheng; Chang, Bianrong; Yi, Fengjia; Shi, Yuanyuan

    2014-01-01

    This study aims to identify the landscape ecological determinants related to Oncomelania hupensis distribution, map the potential high risk of O. hupensis habitats at the microscale, and assess the effects of two environmental control strategies. Sampling was performed on 242 snail sites and 726 non-snail sites throughout Qianjiang City, Hubei Province, China. An integrated approach of landscape pattern analysis coupled with multiple logistic regression modeling was applied to investigate the effects of environmental factors on snail habitats. The risk probability of snail habitats positively correlated with patch fractal dimension (FD), paddy farm land proportion, and wetness index but inversely correlated with categorized normalized difference vegetation index (NDVI) and elevation. These findings indicate that FD can identify irregular features (e.g., irrigation ditches) in plain regions and that a moderate NDVI increases the microscale risk probability. Basing on the observed determinants, we predicted a map showing high-risk areas of snail habitats and simulated the effects of conduit hardening and paddy farming land rotation to dry farming land. The two approaches were confirmed effective for snail control. These findings provide an empirical basis for health professionals in local schistosomiasis control stations to identify priority areas and promising environmental control strategies for snail control and prevention. PMID:25003174

  9. Potential Guidelines for Conducting and Reporting Environmental Education Research: Quantitative Methods of Inquiry.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Smith-Sebasto, N. J.

    2001-01-01

    Presents potential guidelines for conducting and reporting environmental education research using quantitative methods of inquiry that were developed during a 10-hour (1-1/2 day) workshop sponsored by the North American Commission on Environmental Education Research during the 1998 annual meeting of the North American Association for Environmental…

  10. Hydraulic fracturing water use variability in the United States and potential environmental implications.

    PubMed

    Gallegos, Tanya J; Varela, Brian A; Haines, Seth S; Engle, Mark A

    2015-07-01

    A U.S. map of water volumes used to hydraulically fracture oil and gas wells, 2011-2014Hydraulic fracturing water volumes differ regionally across the U.S.Discussion of variation in water use and potential environmental implications.

  11. Mapping the Racial Inequality in Place: Using Youth Perceptions to Identify Unequal Exposure to Neighborhood Environmental Hazards

    PubMed Central

    Teixeira, Samantha; Zuberi, Anita

    2016-01-01

    Black youth are more likely than white youth to grow up in poor, segregated neighborhoods. This racial inequality in the neighborhood environments of black youth increases their contact with hazardous neighborhood environmental features including violence and toxic exposures that contribute to racial inequality in youth health and well-being. While the concept of neighborhood effects has been studied at length by social scientists, this work has not been as frequently situated within an environmental justice (EJ) paradigm. The present study used youth perceptions gained from in-depth interviews with youth from one Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania neighborhood to identify neighborhood environmental health hazards. We then mapped these youth-identified features to examine how they are spatially and racially distributed across the city. Our results suggest that the intersection of race and poverty, neighborhood disorder, housing abandonment, and crime were salient issues for youth. The maps show support for the youths’ assertions that the environments of black and white individuals across the city of Pittsburgh differ in noteworthy ways. This multi-lens, mixed-method analysis was designed to challenge some of the assumptions we make about addressing environmental inequality using youths’ own opinions on the issue to drive our inquiry. PMID:27571086

  12. 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...

  13. USING A GEOGRAPHIC INFORMATION SYSTEM TO IDENTIFY AREAS WITH POTENTIAL FOR OFF-TARGET PESTICIDE EXPOSURE

    EPA Science Inventory

    In many countries, numerous tests are required as part of the risk assessment process before chemical registration to protect human health and the environment from unintended effects of chemical releases. Most of these tests are not based on ecological or environmental relevance ...

  14. Potential pitfalls of relying on hydrogen sulfide (H2S) production to identify Salmonella in feed

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Salmonella can be difficult to assess and isolate in poultry feed due to stress, uneven distribution and poor growth. Previous studies have shown that several strains of Salmonella can be affected by environmental changes, resulting in H2S-negative colonies. This is a major concern, as H2S productio...

  15. Using in Vitro High Throughput Screening Assays to Identify Potential Endocrine-Disrupting Chemicals

    EPA Science Inventory

    Over the past 20 years, an increased focus on detecting environmental chemicals posing a risk of adverse effects due to endocrine disruption has driven the creation of the U.S. EPA Endocrine Disruptor Screening Program (EDSP). Thousands of chemicals are subject to the EDSP, whic...

  16. Potential Environmental and Environmental-Health Implications of the SAFRR Tsunami Scenario in California: Chapter F in The SAFRR (Science Application for Risk Reduction) Tsunami Scenario

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Plumlee, Geoffrey S.; Morman, Suzette A.; San Juan, Carma

    2013-01-01

    If human populations are successfully evacuated prior to the tsunami arrival, there would be no or limited numbers of drownings, other casualties, or related injuries, wounds, and infections. Immediately after the tsunami, human populations away from the inundation zone could be transiently exposed to airborne gases, smoke, and ash from tsunamigenic fires. Cleanup and disposal, particularly of hazardous materials, would pose substantial logistical challenges and economic costs. Given the high value of the coastal residential and commercial properties in the inundation zone, it can be postulated that there would be substantial insurance claims for environmental restoration, mold mitigation, disposal of debris that contains hazardous materials, and costs of litigation related to environmental liability. Post-tsunami cleanup, if done with appropriate mitigation (for example, dust control), personal protection, and disposal measures, would help reduce the potential for cleanup-worker and resident exposures to toxicants and pathogens in harbor waters, debris, soils, ponded waters, and buildings. A number of other steps can be taken by governments, businesses, and residents to help reduce the environmental impacts of tsunamis and to recover more quickly from these environmental impacts. For example, development of State and local policies that foster rapid assessment of potential contamination, as well as rapid decision making for disposal options should hazardous debris or sediment be identified, would help enhance recovery by speeding cleanup.

  17. An aggregate analysis of personal care products in the environment: Identifying the distribution of environmentally-relevant concentrations.

    PubMed

    Hopkins, Zachary R; Blaney, Lee

    2016-01-01

    Over the past 3-4 decades, per capita consumption of personal care products (PCPs) has steadily risen, resulting in increased discharge of the active and inactive ingredients present in these products into wastewater collection systems. PCPs comprise a long list of compounds employed in toothpaste, sunscreen, lotions, soaps, body washes, and insect repellants, among others. While comprehensive toxicological studies are not yet available, an increasing body of literature has shown that PCPs of all classes can impact aquatic wildlife, bacteria, and/or mammalian cells at low concentrations. Ongoing research efforts have identified PCPs in a variety of environmental compartments, including raw wastewater, wastewater effluent, surface water, wastewater solids, sediment, groundwater, and drinking water. Here, an aggregate analysis of over 5000 reported detections was conducted to better understand the distribution of environmentally-relevant PCP concentrations in, and between, these compartments. The distributions were used to identify whether aggregated environmentally-relevant concentration ranges intersected with available toxicity data. For raw wastewater, wastewater effluent, and surface water, a clear overlap was present between the 25th-75th percentiles and identified toxicity levels. This analysis suggests that improved wastewater treatment of antimicrobials, UV filters, and polycyclic musks is required to prevent negative impacts on aquatic species.

  18. 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

  19. Endocrine-Disrupting Chemicals and Oil and Natural Gas Operations: Potential Environmental Contamination and Recommendations to Assess Complex Environmental Mixtures

    PubMed Central

    Kassotis, Christopher D.; Tillitt, Donald E.; Lin, Chung-Ho; McElroy, Jane A.; Nagel, Susan C.

    2015-01-01

    Background Hydraulic fracturing technologies, developed over the last 65 years, have only recently been combined with horizontal drilling to unlock oil and gas reserves previously deemed inaccessible. Although these technologies have dramatically increased domestic oil and natural gas production, they have also raised concerns for the potential contamination of local water supplies with the approximately 1,000 chemicals that are used throughout the process, including many known or suspected endocrine-disrupting chemicals. Objectives We discuss the need for an endocrine component to health assessments for drilling-dense regions in the context of hormonal and antihormonal activities for chemicals used. Methods We discuss the literature on a) surface and groundwater contamination by oil and gas extraction operations, and b) potential human exposure, particularly in the context of the total hormonal and antihormonal activities present in surface and groundwater from natural and anthropogenic sources; we also discuss initial analytical results and critical knowledge gaps. Discussion In light of the potential for environmental release of oil and gas chemicals that can disrupt hormone receptor systems, we recommend methods for assessing complex hormonally active environmental mixtures. Conclusions We describe a need for an endocrine-centric component for overall health assessments and provide information supporting the idea that using such a component will help explain reported adverse health trends as well as help develop recommendations for environmental impact assessments and monitoring programs. Citation Kassotis CD, Tillitt DE, Lin CH, McElroy JA, Nagel SC. 2016. Endocrine-disrupting chemicals and oil and natural gas operations: potential environmental contamination and recommendations to assess complex environmental mixtures. Environ Health Perspect 124:256–264; http://dx.doi.org/10.1289/ehp.1409535 PMID:26311476

  20. Environmental characterization of two potential locations at Hanford for a new production reactor

    SciTech Connect

    Watson, E.C.; Becker, C.D.; Fitzner, R.E.; Gano, K.A.; Imhoff, K.L.; McCallum, R.F.; Myers, D.A.; Page, T.L.; Price, K.R.; Ramsdell, J.V.; Rice D.G.; Schreiber D.L.; Skumatz L.A.; Sommer D.J.; Tawil J.J.; Wallace R.W.; Watson D.G.

    1984-09-01

    This report describes various environmental aspects of two areas on the Hanford Site that are potential locations for a New Production Reactor (NPR). The area known as the Skagit Hanford Site is considered the primary or reference site. The second area, termed the Firehouse Site, is considered the alternate site. The report encompasses an environmental characterization of these two potential NPR locations. Eight subject areas are covered: geography and demography; ecology; meteorology; hydrology; geology; cultural resources assessment; economic and social effects of station construction and operation; and environmental monitoring. 80 refs., 68 figs., 109 tabs.

  1. Envisioning a metropolitan foodshed: potential environmental consequences of increasing food-crop production around Chicago

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bowen, E. E.; Martin, P. A.; Schuble, T. J.

    2009-12-01

    Nationwide, cities are increasingly developing policies aimed at greater sustainability, particularly focusing on reducing environmental impact. Such policies commonly emphasize more efficiently using energy to decrease the greenhouse gas (GHG) footprint of the city. However, most plans ignore the food system as a factor in regional energy use and GHG emissions. Yet, the food system in the United States accounts for ~20% of per capita greenhouse gas emissions. Local, sustainable food production is cited as one strategy for mitigating GHG emissions of large metropolitan areas. “Sustainable” for regional agriculture is often identified as small-scale, diversified food crop production using best practices management. Localized food production (termed “foodshed”) using sustainable agriculture could mitigate climate change in multiple ways: (1) energy and therefore CO2-intensive portions of the conventional food system might be replaced by local, lower-input food production resulting in carbon offsets; (2) increased regional carbon storage might result from well-managed food crop production vs. commodity crop production; and (3) averted N2O emissions might result from closing nutrient cycles on agricultural lands following changes in management practices. The broader implications for environmental impact of widespread conversion to sustainable food crop agriculture, however, remain largely unknown. We examine the Chicago metropolitan region to quantify the impact of increased local food production on regional energy efficiency and GHG emissions. Geospatial analysis is used to quantify the resource potential for establishing a Chicago metropolitan foodshed. A regional foodshed is defined by minimizing cost through transportation mode (road, rail, or water) and maximizing the production potential of different soil types. Simple biogeochemical modeling is used to predict changes in N2O emissions and nutrient flows following changes in land management practices

  2. Integrating human health and environmental health into the DPSIR framework: a tool to identify research opportunities for sustainable and healthy communities.

    PubMed

    Yee, Susan H; Bradley, Patricia; Fisher, William S; Perreault, Sally D; Quackenboss, James; Johnson, Eric D; Bousquin, Justin; Murphy, Patricia A

    2012-12-01

    The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency has recently realigned its research enterprise around the concept of sustainability. Scientists from across multiple disciplines have a role to play in contributing the information, methods, and tools needed to more fully understand the long-term impacts of decisions on the social and economic sustainability of communities. Success will depend on a shift in thinking to integrate, organize, and prioritize research within a systems context. We used the Driving forces-Pressures-State-Impact-Response (DPSIR) framework as a basis for integrating social, cultural, and economic aspects of environmental and human health into a single framework. To make the framework broadly applicable to sustainability research planning, we provide a hierarchical system of DPSIR keywords and guidelines for use as a communication tool. The applicability of the integrated framework was first tested on a public health issue (asthma disparities) for purposes of discussion. We then applied the framework at a science planning meeting to identify opportunities for sustainable and healthy communities research. We conclude that an integrated systems framework has many potential roles in science planning, including identifying key issues, visualizing interactions within the system, identifying research gaps, organizing information, developing computational models, and identifying indicators.

  3. 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

  4. 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

    This study aims to better understand the role of vegetation on the Ca cycle at the level of the critical zone of the Earth, in order to specify the mechanisms controlling the Ca absorption by plants at the rock/plant interface. To do this, we performed experiments using hydroponic plant cultures in a way that we could control the cooccuring geochemical and biological processes and determine the impact of the nutritive solution on the Ca cycle within plants. A dicotyledon and calcicole plant with rapid growth, the French bean (Phaseolus vulgaris L.), has been chosen to have access to one complete growth cycle. Several experiments have been conducted with two Ca concentrations, 5 (L) and 60 (H) ppm and two pH values (4 and 6) in the nutritive solution, for which the Ca concentration was maintained constant, so its Ca content is considered to be infinite. We determined Ca concentrations and isotopic ratios in the nutritive solution and in different organs (main roots, secondary roots, old and young stems, old and young leaves and fruits) at two different growth stages (10 days and 6 weeks). Our results show, in accord with previously published field studies, that the bean organs are all enriched in the light 40Ca isotope compared to the nutritive solution (e.g. Wigand et al., 2005; Page et al., 2008; Cenki-Tok et al., 2009; Holmden and Bélanger, 2010). We identify two fractionation levels. The first occurs during the uptake of the nutrient elements by the lateral roots. This implies that the main mechanisms of light isotope enrichments in the plant are due to electrochemical gradient transport processes taking place at this interface. The second fractionation can be observed within the plant itself and is due to the nature of the considered organ itself. Indeed structural reservoirs (primary roots, stem, reproductive organs) incorporate more the light 40Ca isotope compared to the transfer reservoirs (lateral roots, xylem sap, leaves). This could be linked to ion

  5. Identifying built environmental patterns using cluster analysis and GIS: Relationships with walking, cycling and body mass index in French adults

    PubMed Central

    2012-01-01

    Background Socio-ecological models suggest that both individual and neighborhood characteristics contribute to facilitating health-enhancing behaviors such as physical activity. Few European studies have explored relationships between local built environmental characteristics, recreational walking and cycling and weight status in adults. The aim of this study was to identify built environmental patterns in a French urban context and to assess associations with recreational walking and cycling behaviors as performed by middle-aged adult residents. Methods We used a two-step procedure based on cluster analysis to identify built environmental patterns in the region surrounding Paris, France, using measures derived from Geographic Information Systems databases on green spaces, proximity facilities (destinations) and cycle paths. Individual data were obtained from participants in the SU.VI.MAX cohort; 1,309 participants residing in the Ile-de-France in 2007 were included in this analysis. Associations between built environment patterns, leisure walking/cycling data (h/week) and measured weight status were assessed using multinomial logistic regression with adjustment for individual and neighborhood characteristics. Results Based on accessibility to green spaces, proximity facilities and availability of cycle paths, seven built environmental patterns were identified. The geographic distribution of built environmental patterns in the Ile-de-France showed that a pattern characterized by poor spatial accessibility to green spaces and proximity facilities and an absence of cycle paths was found only in neighborhoods in the outer suburbs, whereas patterns characterized by better spatial accessibility to green spaces, proximity facilities and cycle paths were more evenly distributed across the region. Compared to the reference pattern (poor accessibility to green areas and facilities, absence of cycle paths), subjects residing in neighborhoods characterized by high

  6. Infrared Spectroscopy of Pollen Identifies Plant Species and Genus as Well as Environmental Conditions

    PubMed Central

    Zimmermann, Boris; Kohler, Achim

    2014-01-01

    Background It is imperative to have reliable and timely methodologies for analysis and monitoring of seed plants in order to determine climate-related plant processes. Moreover, impact of environment on plant fitness is predominantly based on studies of female functions, while the contribution of male gametophytes is mostly ignored due to missing data on pollen quality. We explored the use of infrared spectroscopy of pollen for an inexpensive and rapid characterization of plants. Methodology The study was based on measurement of pollen samples by two Fourier transform infrared techniques: single reflectance attenuated total reflectance and transmission measurement of sample pellets. The experimental set, with a total of 813 samples, included five pollination seasons and 300 different plant species belonging to all principal spermatophyte clades (conifers, monocotyledons, eudicots, and magnoliids). Results The spectroscopic-based methodology enables detection of phylogenetic variations, including the separation of confamiliar and congeneric species. Furthermore, the methodology enables measurement of phenotypic plasticity by the detection of inter-annual variations within the populations. The spectral differences related to environment and taxonomy are interpreted biochemically, specifically variations of pollen lipids, proteins, carbohydrates, and sporopollenins. The study shows large variations of absolute content of nutrients for congenital species pollinating in the same environmental conditions. Moreover, clear correlation between carbohydrate-to-protein ratio and pollination strategy has been detected. Infrared spectral database with respect to biochemical variation among the range of species, climate and biogeography will significantly improve comprehension of plant-environment interactions, including impact of global climate change on plant communities. PMID:24748390

  7. X-ray absorption spectroscopy identifies calcium-uranyl-carbonate complexes at environmental concentrations.

    SciTech Connect

    Kelly, S. D.; Kemner, K. M.; Brooks, S. C.; Biosciences Division; ORNL

    2007-01-01

    Current research on bioremediation of uranium-contaminated groundwater focuses on supplying indigenous metal-reducing bacteria with the appropriate metabolic requirements to induce microbiological reduction of soluble uranium(VI) to poorly soluble uranium(IV). Recent studies of uranium(VI) bioreduction in the presence of environmentally relevant levels of calcium revealed limited and slowed uranium(VI) reduction and the formation of a Ca-UO{sub 2}-CO{sub 3} complex. However, the stoichiometry of the complex is poorly defined and may be complicated by the presence of a Na-UO{sub 2}-CO{sub 3} complex. Such a complex might exist even at high calcium concentrations, as some UO{sub 2}-CO{sub 3} complexes will still be present. The number of calcium and/or sodium atoms coordinated to a uranyl carbonate complex will determine the net charge of the complex. Such a change in aqueous speciation of uranium(VI) in calcareous groundwater may affect the fate and transport properties of uranium. In this paper, we present the results from X-ray absorption fine structure (XAFS) measurements of a series of solutions containing 50 {micro}M uranium(VI) and 30 mM sodium bicarbonate, with various calcium concentrations of 0-5 mM. Use of the data series reduces the uncertainty in the number of calcium atoms bound to the UO{sub 2}-CO{sub 3} complex to approximately 0.6 and enables spectroscopic identification of the Na-UO{sub 2}-CO{sub 3} complex. At nearly neutral pH values, the numbers of sodium and calcium atoms bound to the uranyl triscarbonate species are found to depend on the calcium concentration, as predicted by speciation calculations.

  8. X-ray Absorption Spectroscopy Identifies Calcium-Uranyl-Carbonate Complexes at Environmental Concentrations

    SciTech Connect

    Kelly, Shelly D; Kemner, Kenneth M; Brooks, Scott C

    2007-01-01

    Current research on bioremediation of uranium-contaminated groundwater focuses on supplying indigenous metal-reducing bacteria with the appropriate metabolic requirements to induce microbiological reduction of soluble uranium(VI) to poorly soluble uranium(IV). Recent studies of uranium(VI) bioreduction in the presence of environmentally relevant levels of calcium revealed limited and slowed uranium(VI) reduction and the formation of a Ca-UO2-CO3 complex. However, the stoichiometry of the complex is poorly defined and may be complicated by the presence of a Na-UO2-CO3 complex. Such a complex might exist even at high calcium concentrations, as some UO2-CO3 complexes will still be present. The number of calcium and/or sodium atoms coordinated to a uranyl carbonate complex will determine the net charge of the complex. Such a change in aqueous speciation of uranium(VI) in calcareous groundwater may affect the fate and transport properties of uranium. In this paper, we present the results from X-ray absorption fine structure (XAFS) measurements of a series of solutions containing 50 lM uranium(VI) and 30 mM sodium bicarbonate, with various calcium concentrations of 0-5 mM. Use of the data series reduces the uncertainty in the number of calcium atoms bound to the UO2-CO3 complex to approximately 0.6 and enables spectroscopic identification of the Na-UO2-CO3 complex. At nearly neutral pH values, the numbers of sodium and calcium atoms bound to the uranyl triscarbonate species are found to depend on the calcium concentration, as predicted by speciation calculations.

  9. Identifying gene coexpression networks underlying the dynamic regulation of wood-forming tissues in Populus under diverse environmental conditions.

    PubMed

    Zinkgraf, Matthew; Liu, Lijun; Groover, Andrew; Filkov, Vladimir

    2017-03-01

    Trees modify wood formation through integration of environmental and developmental signals in complex but poorly defined transcriptional networks, allowing trees to produce woody tissues appropriate to diverse environmental conditions. In order to identify relationships among genes expressed during wood formation, we integrated data from new and publically available datasets in Populus. These datasets were generated from woody tissue and include transcriptome profiling, transcription factor binding, DNA accessibility and genome-wide association mapping experiments. Coexpression modules were calculated, each of which contains genes showing similar expression patterns across experimental conditions, genotypes and treatments. Conserved gene coexpression modules (four modules totaling 8398 genes) were identified that were highly preserved across diverse environmental conditions and genetic backgrounds. Functional annotations as well as correlations with specific experimental treatments associated individual conserved modules with distinct biological processes underlying wood formation, such as cell-wall biosynthesis, meristem development and epigenetic pathways. Module genes were also enriched for DNase I hypersensitivity footprints and binding from four transcription factors associated with wood formation. The conserved modules are excellent candidates for modeling core developmental pathways common to wood formation in diverse environments and genotypes, and serve as testbeds for hypothesis generation and testing for future studies.

  10. Substrate interferences in identifying flammable liquids in food, environmental and biological samples: case studies.

    PubMed

    Borusiewicz, Rafal

    2015-05-01

    The analysis of samples for traces of ignitable liquids is most often connected with suspected arson cases. In such cases, samples taken from the point of origin of the fire are analyzed for the presence of ignitable liquids. However, sometimes, in cases not connected with arson, there is a need to detect and identify traces of ignitable liquids. Three examples of such cases are given in this paper. Aqueous samples (polluted water, juice and blood) were analyzed using a procedure routinely used in the analyses of fire debris. The procedure consists of passive adsorption of volatile organic compounds on Tenax, followed by thermal desorption and chromatographic analysis. Results showed that analysis of such untypical samples may be connected with unusual matrix effects, not frequently encountered in fire debris samples.

  11. 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

  12. Estimating juniper cover from NAIP imagery and evaluating relationships between potential cover and environmental variables

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Juniper management is constrained by limited tools to estimate juniper cover and potential cover at stand closure across landscapes. We evaluated if remotely sensed imagery (NAIP) could be used to estimate juniper cover and if environmental characteristic could be used to determine potential junipe...

  13. Environmental pollutants, diet, physical activity, body size, and breast cancer: where do we stand in research to identify opportunities for prevention?

    PubMed

    Brody, Julia Green; Rudel, Ruthann A; Michels, Karin B; Moysich, Kirsten B; Bernstein, Leslie; Attfield, Kathleen R; Gray, Sharon

    2007-06-15

    Breast cancer is the most common invasive cancer in women worldwide and the leading cause of death in US women in mid-life. Treatment has adverse effects, adding to the importance of finding modifiable risk factors. At the invitation of Susan G. Komen for the Cure, we reviewed studies of breast cancer and environmental pollutants, diet (assessed prospectively), body size, and physical activity, and animal studies that identify chemicals as potential mammary carcinogens. Databases developed in the review include information on 216 chemicals that increased mammary gland tumors in animal studies and 450 epidemiologic studies (accessible at www.silentspring.org/sciencereview and www.komen.org/environment). Exposure to potential mammary carcinogens is widespread from chemicals found in consumer products, air and drinking water pollution, food, and women's workplaces. Epidemiologic studies have included only a small number of chemicals identified as mammary carcinogens or as hormone disruptors, which may have implications for breast cancer; however, evidence is emerging for associations between breast cancer and polychlorinated biphenyls, polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons, and organic solvents. Prospective diet studies have not revealed consistent associations with breast cancer. Improved exposure assessment methods will help advance future human studies of both diet and environmental pollutants. Studies of physical activity show that it is protective. In the same vein as evidence-based medicine, messages for patients, policymakers, and the public should support decision-making based on the strength of current evidence; such messages might address exposure reduction for some pollutants. Investments in research on environmental factors in breast cancer have potentially large public health benefits.

  14. Niche Divergence versus Neutral Processes: Combined Environmental and Genetic Analyses Identify Contrasting Patterns of Differentiation in Recently Diverged Pine Species

    PubMed Central

    Moreno-Letelier, Alejandra; Ortíz-Medrano, Alejandra; Piñero, Daniel

    2013-01-01

    Background and Aims Solving relationships of recently diverged taxa, poses a challenge due to shared polymorphism and weak reproductive barriers. Multiple lines of evidence are needed to identify independently evolving lineages. This is especially true of long-lived species with large effective population sizes, and slow rates of lineage sorting. North American pines are an interesting group to test this multiple approach. Our aim is to combine cytoplasmic genetic markers with environmental information to clarify species boundaries and relationships of the species complex of Pinus flexilis, Pinus ayacahuite, and Pinus strobiformis. Methods Mitochondrial and chloroplast sequences were combined with previously obtained microsatellite data and contrasted with environmental information to reconstruct phylogenetic relationships of the species complex. Ecological niche models were compared to test if ecological divergence is significant among species. Key Results and Conclusion Separately, both genetic and ecological evidence support a clear differentiation of all three species but with different topology, but also reveal an ancestral contact zone between P. strobiformis and P. ayacahuite. The marked ecological differentiation of P. flexilis suggests that ecological speciation has occurred in this lineage, but this is not reflected in neutral markers. The inclusion of environmental traits in phylogenetic reconstruction improved the resolution of internal branches. We suggest that combining environmental and genetic information would be useful for species delimitation and phylogenetic studies in other recently diverged species complexes. PMID:24205167

  15. Feasibility of Deploying Inhaler Sensors to Identify the Impacts of Environmental Triggers and Built Environment Factors on Asthma Short-Acting Bronchodilator Use

    PubMed Central

    Su, Jason G.; Barrett, Meredith A.; Henderson, Kelly; Humblet, Olivier; Smith, Ted; Sublett, James W.; Nesbitt, LaQuandra; Hogg, Chris; Van Sickle, David; Sublett, James L.

    2016-01-01

    Background: Epidemiological asthma research has relied upon self-reported symptoms or healthcare utilization data, and used the residential address as the primary location for exposure. These data sources can be temporally limited, spatially aggregated, subjective, and burdensome for the patient to collect. Objectives: First, we aimed to test the feasibility of collecting rescue inhaler use data in space–time using electronic sensors. Second, we aimed to evaluate whether these data have the potential to identify environmental triggers and built environment factors associated with rescue inhaler use and to determine whether these findings would be consistent with the existing literature. Methods: We utilized zero-truncated negative binomial models to identify triggers associated with inhaler use, and implemented three sensitivity analyses to validate our findings. Results: Electronic sensors fitted on metered dose inhalers tracked 5,660 rescue inhaler use events in space and time for 140 participants from 13 June 2012 to 28 February 2014. We found that the inhaler sensors were feasible in passively collecting objective rescue inhaler use data. We identified several environmental triggers with a positive and significant association with inhaler use, including: AQI, PM10, weed pollen, and mold. Conversely, the spatial distribution of tree cover demonstrated a negative and significant association with inhaler use. Conclusions: Utilizing a sensor to capture the signal of rescue inhaler use in space–time offered a passive and objective signal of asthma activity. This approach enabled detailed analyses to identify environmental triggers and built environment factors that are associated with asthma symptoms beyond the residential address. The application of these new technologies has the potential to improve our surveillance and understanding of asthma. Citation: Su JG, Barrett MA, Henderson K, Humblet O, Smith T, Sublett JW, Nesbitt L, Hogg C, Van Sickle D, Sublett JL

  16. 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.

  17. Identifying energy and carbon footprint optimization potentials of a sludge treatment line with Life Cycle Assessment.

    PubMed

    Remy, C; Lesjean, B; Waschnewski, J

    2013-01-01

    This study exemplifies the use of Life Cycle Assessment (LCA) as a tool to quantify the environmental impacts of processes for wastewater treatment. In a case study, the sludge treatment line of a large wastewater treatment plant (WWTP) is analysed in terms of cumulative energy demand and the emission of greenhouse gases (carbon footprint). Sludge treatment consists of anaerobic digestion, dewatering, drying, and disposal of stabilized sludge in mono- or co-incineration in power plants or cement kilns. All relevant forms of energy demand (electricity, heat, chemicals, fossil fuels, transport) and greenhouse gas emissions (fossil CO(2), CH(4), N(2)O) are accounted in the assessment, including the treatment of return liquor from dewatering in the WWTP. Results show that the existing process is positive in energy balance (-162 MJ/PE(COD) * a) and carbon footprint (-11.6 kg CO(2)-eq/PE(COD) * a) by supplying secondary products such as electricity from biogas production or mono-incineration and substituting fossil fuels in co-incineration. However, disposal routes for stabilized sludge differ considerably in their energy and greenhouse gas profiles. In total, LCA proves to be a suitable tool to support future investment decisions with information of environmental relevance on the impact of wastewater treatment, but also urban water systems in general.

  18. Endocrine-disrupting chemicals and oil and natural gas operations: Potential environmental contamination and recommendations to assess complex environmental mixtures

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Kassotis, Christopher D.; Tillitt, Donald E.; Lin, Chung-Ho; McElroy, Jane A.; Nagel, Susan C.

    2016-01-01

    Background: Hydraulic fracturing technologies, developed over the last 65 years, have only recently been combined with horizontal drilling to unlock oil and gas reserves previously deemed inaccessible. While these technologies have dramatically increased domestic oil and natural gas production, they have also raised concerns for the potential contamination of local water supplies with the approximately 1,000 chemicals used throughout the process, including many known or suspected endocrine-disrupting chemicals.Objectives: We discuss the need for an endocrine component to health assessments for drilling-dense regions in the context of hormonal and anti-hormonal activities for chemicals used.Methods: We discuss the literature on 1) surface and ground water contamination by oil and gas extraction operations, and 2) potential human exposure, particularly in context of the total hormonal and anti-hormonal activities present in surface and ground water from natural and anthropogenic sources, with initial analytical results and critical knowledge gaps discussed.Discussion: In light of the potential for environmental release of oil and gas chemicals that can disrupt hormone receptor systems, we recommend methods for assessing complex hormonally active environmental mixtures.Conclusions: We describe a need for an endocrine-centric component for overall health assessments and provide supporting information that using this may help explain reported adverse health trends as well as help develop recommendations for environmental impact assessments and monitoring programs.

  19. Mercury Isotopes as Proxies to Identify Sources and Environmental Impacts of Mercury in Sphalerites

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yin, Runsheng; Feng, Xinbin; Hurley, James P.; Krabbenhoft, David P.; Lepak, Ryan F.; Hu, Ruizhong; Zhang, Qian; Li, Zhonggen; Bi, Xianwu

    2016-01-01

    During the past few years, evidence of mass independent fractionation (MIF) for mercury (Hg) isotopes have been reported in the Earth’s surface reservoirs, mainly assumed to be formed during photochemical processes. However, the magnitude of Hg-MIF in interior pools of the crust is largely unknown. Here, we reported significant variation in Hg-MIF signature (Δ199Hg: ‑0.24 ~ + 0.18‰) in sphalerites collected from 102 zinc (Zn) deposits in China, indicating that Hg-MIF can be recorded into the Earth’s crust during geological recycling of crustal material. Changing magnitudes of Hg-MIF signals were observed in Zn deposits with different formations, evidence that Hg isotopes (especially Hg-MIF) can be a useful tracer to identify sources (syngenetic and epigenetic) of Hg in mineral deposits. The average isotopic composition in studied sphalerites (δ202Hgaverage: ‑0.58‰ Δ199Hgaverage: +0.03‰) may be used to fingerprint Zn smelting activities, one of the largest global Hg emission sources.

  20. Mercury Isotopes as Proxies to Identify Sources and Environmental Impacts of Mercury in Sphalerites

    PubMed Central

    Yin, Runsheng; Feng, Xinbin; Hurley, James P.; Krabbenhoft, David P.; Lepak, Ryan F.; Hu, Ruizhong; Zhang, Qian; Li, Zhonggen; Bi, Xianwu

    2016-01-01

    During the past few years, evidence of mass independent fractionation (MIF) for mercury (Hg) isotopes have been reported in the Earth’s surface reservoirs, mainly assumed to be formed during photochemical processes. However, the magnitude of Hg-MIF in interior pools of the crust is largely unknown. Here, we reported significant variation in Hg-MIF signature (Δ199Hg: −0.24 ~ + 0.18‰) in sphalerites collected from 102 zinc (Zn) deposits in China, indicating that Hg-MIF can be recorded into the Earth’s crust during geological recycling of crustal material. Changing magnitudes of Hg-MIF signals were observed in Zn deposits with different formations, evidence that Hg isotopes (especially Hg-MIF) can be a useful tracer to identify sources (syngenetic and epigenetic) of Hg in mineral deposits. The average isotopic composition in studied sphalerites (δ202Hgaverage: −0.58‰; Δ199Hgaverage: +0.03‰) may be used to fingerprint Zn smelting activities, one of the largest global Hg emission sources. PMID:26728705

  1. 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…

  2. 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...

  3. 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…

  4. 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...

  5. 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).

  6. 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

  7. Identified molecular mechanism of interaction between environmental risk factors and differential expression genes in cartilage of Kashin-Beck disease.

    PubMed

    Yu, Fang-Fang; Zhang, Yan-Xiang; Zhang, Lian-He; Li, Wen-Rong; Guo, Xiong; Lammi, Mikko J

    2016-12-01

    As environmental risk factors (ERFs) play an important role in the pathogenesis of Kashin-Beck disease (KBD), it is important to identify the interaction between ERFs and differentially expression genes (DEGs) in KBD. The environmental response genes (ERGs) were analyzed in cartilage of KBD in comparison to normal controls.We searched 5 English and 3 Chinese databases from inception to September 2015, to identify case-control studies that examined ERFs for KBD using integrative meta-analysis and systematic review. Total RNA was isolated from articular cartilage of KBD patients and healthy controls. Human whole genome microarray chip (Agilent) was used to analyze the amplified, labeled, and hybridized total RNA, and the validated microarray data were partially verified using real-time quantitative polymerase chain reaction (qRT-PCR). The ERGs were derived from the Comparative Toxicogenomics Database. The identified ERGs were subjected to KEGG pathway enrichment, biological process (BP), and interaction network analyses using the Database for Annotation, Visualization and Integrated Discovery (DAVID) v6.7, and STRING.The trace elements (selenium and iodine), vitamin E, and polluted grains (T-2 toxin/HT-2 toxin, deoxynivalenol, and nivalenol) were identified as the ERFs for KBD using meta-analysis and review. We identified 21 upregulated ERGs and 7 downregulated ERGs in cartilage with KBD compared with healthy controls, which involved in apoptosis, metabolism, and growth and development. KEGG pathway enrichment analysis found that 2 significant pathways were involved with PI3K-Akt signaling pathway and P53 signaling pathway, and gene ontology function analysis found 3 BPs involved with apoptosis, death, and cell death in KBD cartilage.According to previous results and our own research, we suggest that the trace element selenium and vitamin E induce PI3K-Akt signaling pathway and the mycotoxins (T-2 toxin/HT-2 toxin and DON) induce P53 signaling pathway, contributing

  8. Identified molecular mechanism of interaction between environmental risk factors and differential expression genes in cartilage of Kashin–Beck disease

    PubMed Central

    Yu, Fang-Fang; Zhang, Yan-Xiang; Zhang, Lian-He; Li, Wen-Rong; Guo, Xiong; Lammi, Mikko J.

    2016-01-01

    Abstract As environmental risk factors (ERFs) play an important role in the pathogenesis of Kashin–Beck disease (KBD), it is important to identify the interaction between ERFs and differentially expression genes (DEGs) in KBD. The environmental response genes (ERGs) were analyzed in cartilage of KBD in comparison to normal controls. We searched 5 English and 3 Chinese databases from inception to September 2015, to identify case–control studies that examined ERFs for KBD using integrative meta-analysis and systematic review. Total RNA was isolated from articular cartilage of KBD patients and healthy controls. Human whole genome microarray chip (Agilent) was used to analyze the amplified, labeled, and hybridized total RNA, and the validated microarray data were partially verified using real-time quantitative polymerase chain reaction (qRT-PCR). The ERGs were derived from the Comparative Toxicogenomics Database. The identified ERGs were subjected to KEGG pathway enrichment, biological process (BP), and interaction network analyses using the Database for Annotation, Visualization and Integrated Discovery (DAVID) v6.7, and STRING. The trace elements (selenium and iodine), vitamin E, and polluted grains (T-2 toxin/HT-2 toxin, deoxynivalenol, and nivalenol) were identified as the ERFs for KBD using meta-analysis and review. We identified 21 upregulated ERGs and 7 downregulated ERGs in cartilage with KBD compared with healthy controls, which involved in apoptosis, metabolism, and growth and development. KEGG pathway enrichment analysis found that 2 significant pathways were involved with PI3K-Akt signaling pathway and P53 signaling pathway, and gene ontology function analysis found 3 BPs involved with apoptosis, death, and cell death in KBD cartilage. According to previous results and our own research, we suggest that the trace element selenium and vitamin E induce PI3K-Akt signaling pathway and the mycotoxins (T-2 toxin/HT-2 toxin and DON) induce P53 signaling pathway

  9. 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...

  10. 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…

  11. 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.

  12. 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…

  13. 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…

  14. 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…

  15. 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…

  16. Identifying the role of environmental drivers in organic carbon export from a forested peat catchment.

    PubMed

    Ryder, Elizabeth; de Eyto, Elvira; Dillane, Mary; Poole, Russell; Jennings, Eleanor

    2014-08-15

    Carbon export in streams draining peat catchments represents a potential loss of carbon from long-term stores to downstream aquatic systems and ultimately, through mineralisation, to the atmosphere. There is now a large body of evidence that dissolved organic carbon (DOC) export has increased significantly in recent decades at many sites, although there is still debate about the drivers of this increase. In this study, DOC export and particulate organic carbon (POC) export were quantified from a forested peatland catchment in the west of Ireland over two years at a fine temporal resolution. The principle drivers of change in stream DOC and POC concentrations were investigated using a general additive modelling (GAM) approach. The study period included drought conditions in the early summer of 2010 and clearfelling of some commercial forestry in early 2011. The results indicated that annual loads of 9.5 t DOC km(2) year(-1) and 6.2 t POC km(2) year(-1) were exported from the catchment in 2010. This combined annual load of 15.7 t C km(2) year(-1) would represent between 0.01% and 0.02% of typical estimates for peat soil carbon storage in the region. Soil temperature, river discharge and drought explained 59.7% the deviance in DOC concentrations, while soil temperature, river discharge, and rainfall were the significant drivers of variation in POC concentrations, explaining 58.3% of deviance. Although clearfelling was not a significant factor in either model, large spikes in POC export occurred in 2011 after the first forestry clearance. The results illustrate the complexity of the interactions between climate and land management in driving stream water carbon export. They also highlight the sensitivity of peatland carbon stores to changes in temperature and precipitation, which are projected to be more extreme and variable under future climate scenarios.

  17. Principal components analysis to identify influences on research communication and engagement during an environmental disaster

    PubMed Central

    Winters, Charlene A; Moore, Colleen F; Kuntz, Sandra W; Weinert, Clarann; Hernandez, Tanis; Black, Brad

    2016-01-01

    Objectives To discern community attitudes towards research engagement in Libby, Montana, the only Superfund site for which a public health emergency has been declared. Study design Survey study of convenience samples of residents near the Libby, Montana Superfund site. Participants Residents of the Libby, Montana area were recruited from a local retail establishment (N=120, survey 1) or a community event (N=127, survey 2). Measures Two surveys were developed in consultation with a Community Advisory Panel. Results Principal components of survey 1 showed four dimensions of community members' attitudes towards research engagement: (1) researcher communication and contributions to the community, (2) identity and affiliation of the researchers requesting participation, (3) potential personal barriers, including data confidentiality, painful or invasive procedures and effects on health insurance and (4) research benefits for the community, oneself or family. The score on the first factor was positively related to desire to participate in research (r=0.31, p=0.01). Scores on factors 2 and 3 were higher for those with diagnosis of asbestos-related disease (ARD) in the family (Cohen's d=0.41, 0.57). Survey 2 also found more positive attitudes towards research when a family member had ARD (Cohen's d=0.48). Conclusions Principal components analysis shows different dimensions of attitudes towards research engagement. The different dimensions are related to community members' desire to be invited to participate in research, awareness of past research in the community and having been screened or diagnosed with a health condition related to the Superfund contaminant. PMID:27507235

  18. Exposure potential of salt marsh units in Edwin B. Forsythe National Wildlife Refuge to environmental health stressors

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Defne, Zafer; Ganju, Neil Kamal; Jones, Daniel K.; Reilly, Timothy J.; Aquino, Kimberly C.; Carbo, Chelsea L.; Kaufhold, Erika E.; Benzel, William M.; Fisher, Shawn C.; Griffin, Dale W.; Iwanowicz, Luke R.; Loftin, Keith A.

    2017-01-01

    Natural and anthropogenic contaminants, pathogens, and viruses are found in soils and sediments throughout the United States. Enhanced dispersion and concentration of these environmental health stressors in coastal regions can result from sea level rise and storm-derived disturbances. The combination of existing environmental health stressors and those mobilized by natural or anthropogenic disasters could adversely impact the health and resilience of coastal communities and ecosystems. This dataset displays the exposure potential to environmental health stressors in the Edwin B. Forsythe National Wildlife Refuge (EBFNWR), which spans over Great Bay, Little Egg Harbor, and Barnegat Bay in New Jersey, USA. Exposure potential is calculated with the Sediment-bound Contaminant Resiliency and Response (SCoRR) ranking system (Reilly and others, 2015) designed to define baseline and post-event sediment-bound environmental health stressors. Facilities obtained from the Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) Toxic Release Inventory (TRI) and Facility Registry Service (FRS) databases were ranked based on their potential contaminant hazard. Ranks were based in part on previous work by Olsen and others (2013), literature reviews, and an expert review panel. A 2000 meter search radius was used to identify nearby ranked facility locations. As part of the Hurricane Sandy Science Plan, the U.S. Geological Survey has started a Wetland Synthesis Project to expand National Assessment of Coastal Change Hazards and forecast products to coastal wetlands. The intent is to provide federal, state, and local managers with tools to estimate their vulnerability and ecosystem service potential. For this purpose, the response and resilience of coastal wetlands to physical factors need to be assessed in terms of the ensuing change to their vulnerability and ecosystem services. EBFNWR was selected as a pilot study area.

  19. How to assess species richness along single environmental gradients? Implications of potential versus realized species distributions.

    PubMed

    van Goethem, Thomas M W J; Huijbregts, Mark A J; Wamelink, G W Wieger; Schipper, Aafke M

    2015-05-01

    Quantifying relationships between species richness and single environmental factors is challenging as species richness typically depends on multiple environmental factors. Recently, various methods have been proposed to tackle this challenge. Using a dataset comprising field observations of grassland vegetation and measured pH values, we compared three methods for deriving species richness response curves. One of the methods estimates species richness close to the maximum species richness observed at the sites, whereas the other two provide estimates of the potential species richness along the environmental gradient. Our response curves suggest that potential species richness of grasslands is slightly more sensitive to acidification than realized plant species richness. However, differences in corresponding environmental quality standards (EQS) for acidification were small compared to intrinsic spatial differences in natural soil pH, indicating that natural background values are more important to consider in the derivation of EQS for pH than methodological differences between the three approaches.

  20. 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.

  1. 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.

  2. 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

  3. Establishing an in vivo assay system to identify components involved in environmental RNA interference in the western corn rootworm.

    PubMed

    Miyata, Keita; Ramaseshadri, Parthasarathy; Zhang, Yuanji; Segers, Gerrit; Bolognesi, Renata; Tomoyasu, Yoshinori

    2014-01-01

    The discovery of environmental RNA interference (RNAi), in which gene expression is suppressed via feeding with double-stranded RNA (dsRNA) molecules, opened the door to the practical application of RNAi-based techniques in crop pest management. The western corn rootworm (WCR, Diabrotica virgifera virgifera) is one of the most devastating corn pests in North America. Interestingly, WCR displays a robust environmental RNAi response, raising the possibility of applying an RNAi-based pest management strategy to this pest. Understanding the molecular mechanisms involved in the WCR environmental RNAi process will allow for determining the rate limiting steps involved with dsRNA toxicity and potential dsRNA resistance mechanisms in WCR. In this study, we have established a two-step in vivo assay system, which allows us to evaluate the involvement of genes in environmental RNAi in WCR. We show that laccase 2 and ebony, critical cuticle pigmentation/tanning genes, can be used as marker genes in our assay system, with ebony being a more stable marker to monitor RNAi activity. In addition, we optimized the dsRNA dose and length for the assay, and confirmed that this assay system is sensitive to detect well-known RNAi components such as Dicer-2 and Argonaute-2. We also evaluated two WCR sid1- like (sil) genes with this assay system. This system will be useful to quickly survey candidate systemic RNAi genes in WCR, and also will be adaptable for a genome-wide RNAi screening to give us an unbiased view of the environmental/systemic RNAi pathway in WCR.

  4. Establishing an In Vivo Assay System to Identify Components Involved in Environmental RNA Interference in the Western Corn Rootworm

    PubMed Central

    Miyata, Keita; Ramaseshadri, Parthasarathy; Zhang, Yuanji; Segers, Gerrit; Bolognesi, Renata; Tomoyasu, Yoshinori

    2014-01-01

    The discovery of environmental RNA interference (RNAi), in which gene expression is suppressed via feeding with double-stranded RNA (dsRNA) molecules, opened the door to the practical application of RNAi-based techniques in crop pest management. The western corn rootworm (WCR, Diabrotica virgifera virgifera) is one of the most devastating corn pests in North America. Interestingly, WCR displays a robust environmental RNAi response, raising the possibility of applying an RNAi-based pest management strategy to this pest. Understanding the molecular mechanisms involved in the WCR environmental RNAi process will allow for determining the rate limiting steps involved with dsRNA toxicity and potential dsRNA resistance mechanisms in WCR. In this study, we have established a two-step in vivo assay system, which allows us to evaluate the involvement of genes in environmental RNAi in WCR. We show that laccase 2 and ebony, critical cuticle pigmentation/tanning genes, can be used as marker genes in our assay system, with ebony being a more stable marker to monitor RNAi activity. In addition, we optimized the dsRNA dose and length for the assay, and confirmed that this assay system is sensitive to detect well-known RNAi components such as Dicer-2 and Argonaute-2. We also evaluated two WCR sid1- like (sil) genes with this assay system. This system will be useful to quickly survey candidate systemic RNAi genes in WCR, and also will be adaptable for a genome-wide RNAi screening to give us an unbiased view of the environmental/systemic RNAi pathway in WCR. PMID:25003334

  5. 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.

  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. Identifying potential receptors and routes of contaminant exposure in the traditional territory of the Ouje-Bougoumou Cree: land use and a geographical information system.

    PubMed

    Tsuji, Leonard J S; Manson, Harry; Wainman, Bruce C; Vanspronsen, Eric P; Shecapio-Blacksmith, Joseph; Rabbitskin, Tommy

    2007-04-01

    Great concern has been raised with respect to the 13 traplines that constitute the traditional territory of the Ouje-Bougoumou Cree located in the James Bay region of northern Quebec, Canada, with respect to mine wastes originating from three local mines. As a result, an "Integrative Risk Assessment" was initiated consisting of three interrelated components: a comprehensive human health study, an assessment of the existing ecological/environmental database, and a land use/potential sites of concern study. In this paper, we document past and present land use in the traditional territory of the Ouje-Bougoumou Cree for 72 heads of households, including 13 tallymen, and use a Geographic Information System (GIS) to layer harvest/hunting and gathering/collecting data over known mining areas and potential sites of concern. In this way, potential receptors of contamination and routes of human exposure were identified. Areas of overlap with respect to land use activity and mining operations were relatively extensive for certain harvesting activities (e.g., beaver, Castor canadensis and various species of game birds), less so for fish harvesting (all species) and water collection, and relatively restrictive for large mammal harvesting and collection of fire wood (and other collection activities). Potential receptors of contaminants associated with mining activity (e.g., fish and small mammals) and potential routes of exposure (e.g., ingestion of contaminated game and drinking of contaminated water) were identified.

  11. 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.

  12. 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

  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. Environmental assessment of two different crop systems in terms of biomethane potential production.

    PubMed

    Bacenetti, Jacopo; Fusi, Alessandra; Negri, Marco; Guidetti, Riccardo; Fiala, Marco

    2014-01-01

    The interest in renewable energy sources has gained great importance in Europe due to the need to reduce fossil energy consumption and greenhouse gas emissions, as required by the Renewable Energy Directive (RED) of the European Parliament. The production of energy from energy crops appears to be consistent with RED. The environmental impact related to this kind of energy primarily originates from crop cultivation. This research aimed to evaluate the environmental impact of different crop systems for biomass production: single and double crop. The environmental performances of maize and maize plus wheat were assessed from a life cycle perspective. Two alternative scenarios considering different yields, crop management, and climatic conditions, were also addressed. One normal cubic metre of potential methane was chosen as a functional unit. Methane potential production data were obtained through lab experimental tests. For both of the crop systems, the factors that have the greatest influence on the overall environmental burden are: fertilizer emissions, diesel fuel emissions, diesel fuel production, and pesticide production. Notwithstanding the greater level of methane potential production, the double crop system appears to have the worse environmental performance with respect to its single crop counterpart. This result is due to the bigger quantity of inputs needed for the double crop system. Therefore, the greater amount of biomass (silage) obtained through the double crop system is less than proportional to the environmental burden that results from the bigger quantity of inputs requested for double crop.

  16. Identifying unprotected and potentially at risk plant communities in the western USA

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Wright, R.G.; Scott, J.M.; Mann, S.; Murray, M.

    2001-01-01

    We analyzed the conservation status of 73 vegetation cover types distributed across a 1.76 million km2 region in 10 states of the western USA. We found that 25 vegetation cover types had at least 10% of their area in nature reserves. These were generally plant communities located at higher elevations and thus more commonly associated with national parks and wilderness areas. All but three of the remaining 48 cover types occurred with sufficient area on publically owned lands in the region to imply that transforming land management intent on these lands could also increase their protection. We also analyzed the level of protection afforded each cover type across its entire geographic distribution in the region. Most cover types that were at least minimally protected in total across the region were also at least minimally protected in most areas of their occurrence. Our results show that there is a realistic opportunity to design a system of biodiversity reserves in this region that represent the full range of environmental conditions in which the various plant communities occur. Conducting this type of broad-scale analysis is a necessary first step in that process and provides a database for others to work from. Published by Elsevier Science Ltd.

  17. 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

  18. 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.

  19. 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.

  20. 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.

  1. 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.

  2. 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.

  3. 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'.

  4. 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

  5. Metagenomic Analyses Reveal That Energy Transfer Gene Abundances Can Predict the Syntrophic Potential of Environmental Microbial Communities

    PubMed Central

    Oberding, Lisa; Gieg, Lisa M.

    2016-01-01

    Hydrocarbon compounds can be biodegraded by anaerobic microorganisms to form methane through an energetically interdependent metabolic process known as syntrophy. The microorganisms that perform this process as well as the energy transfer mechanisms involved are difficult to study and thus are still poorly understood, especially on an environmental scale. Here, metagenomic data was analyzed for specific clusters of orthologous groups (COGs) related to key energy transfer genes thus far identified in syntrophic bacteria, and principal component analysis was used in order to determine whether potentially syntrophic environments could be distinguished using these syntroph related COGs as opposed to universally present COGs. We found that COGs related to hydrogenase and formate dehydrogenase genes were able to distinguish known syntrophic consortia and environments with the potential for syntrophy from non-syntrophic environments, indicating that these COGs could be used as a tool to identify syntrophic hydrocarbon biodegrading environments using metagenomic data. PMID:27681901

  6. Characterization and Potential Environmental Risks of Leachate from Shredded Rubber Mulches

    PubMed Central

    Kanematsu, Masakazu; Hayashi, Ai; Denison, Michael S.; Young, Thomas M.

    2009-01-01

    In order to determine whether shredded rubber mulches (RM) posed water quality risks when used in stormwater best management practices (BMPs) such as bioretention basins, batch leaching tests were conducted to identify and quantify constituents in leachates from RM such as metal ions, nutrients, total organic carbon (TOC), and aryl hydrocarbon receptor (AhR) activity (determined by the chemically activated luciferase gene expression (CALUX) bioassay) at varied temperature and initial pH values. The results indicate that aqueous extracts of RM contain high concentrations of zinc (Zn) compared with wood mulches (WM), and its concentration increased at lower pH and higher temperature. Although methanol extracts of RM displayed high AhR activity, none of the aqueous extracts of RM had significant activity. Hence, while unknown constituents that have significant AhR activity are present in RM, they appear to be not measurably extracted by water under environmental conditions relevant for stormwater (5 < pH < 9, 10 < T < 40°C). Our results suggests that organic constituents in water extracts of RM which have AhR activity may not be of significant concern while leaching of Zn from RM appears to be a potentially larger water quality issue for RM. PMID:19450864

  7. Characterization and potential environmental risks of leachate from shredded rubber mulches.

    PubMed

    Kanematsu, Masakazu; Hayashi, Ai; Denison, Michael S; Young, Thomas M

    2009-08-01

    In order to determine whether shredded rubber mulches (RM) pose water quality risks when used in stormwater best management practices (BMPs) such as bioretention basins, batch leaching tests were conducted to identify and quantify constituents in leachates from RM such as metal ions, nutrients, total organic carbon (TOC), and aryl hydrocarbon receptor (AhR) activity (determined by the chemically activated luciferase gene expression (CALUX) bioassay) at varied temperature and initial pH values. The results indicate that aqueous extracts of RM contain high concentrations of zinc (Zn) compared with wood mulches (WM), and its concentration increased at lower pH and higher temperature. Although methanol extracts of RM displayed high AhR activity, none of the aqueous extracts of RM had significant activity. Hence, while unknown constituents that have significant AhR activity are present in RM, they appear to be not measurably extracted by water under environmental conditions relevant for stormwater (5potentially larger water quality issue for RM.

  8. 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

  9. 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.

  10. 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

  11. 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.

  12. 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

  13. 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

  14. 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.

  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. 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

  18. 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

  19. 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.

  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. 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.

  3. 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

  4. Report: Potential environmental impact of exempt site materials - a case study of bituminous road planings and waste soils.

    PubMed

    Bark, Marjorie; Bland, Michael; Grimes, Sue

    2009-09-01

    The use of waste materials for ecological benefit, agricultural improvement or as part of construction works are often exempt from waste management control in order to maximize the reuse of material that would otherwise be disposed of to landfill. It is important, however, to determine whether there is potential for such waste to cause environmental harm in the context of the basis for granting exemptions under the relevant framework objective to ensure that waste is recovered or disposed of without risk to water, air, soil, plants or animals. The potential for environmental harm was investigated by leaching studies on two wastes commonly found at exempt sites: bituminous road planings and waste soils. For bituminous road planings, the organic components of the waste were identified by their solubility in organic solvents but these components would have low environmental impact in terms of bioavailability. Leaching studies of the heavy metals copper, lead and zinc, into the environment, under specific conditions and particularly those modelling acid rain and landfill leachate conditions showed that, except for copper, the amounts leached fell within Waste Acceptance Criteria compliance limits for defining waste as inert waste. The fact that the amount of copper leached was greater than the Waste Acceptance Criteria level suggests that either additional testing of wastes regarded as exempt should be carried out to ensure that they are in analytical compliance or that legislation should allow for the potential benefits of reuse to supersede deviations from analytical compliance.

  5. Geochemical and ecotoxicological assessment of iron- and steel-making slags for potential use in environmental applications.

    PubMed

    Wendling, Laura A; Binet, Monique T; Yuan, Zheng; Gissi, Francesca; Koppel, Darren J; Adams, Merrin S

    2013-11-01

    Prior to the productive use of iron- and steel-making slags as environmental amendments, a risk assessment supported by material characterization concomitant with leaching and ecotoxicological testing is necessary. Five iron- and steel-making slags were characterized geochemically, and the leachability of their elemental constituents was assessed. The toxicity of slag leachate to microalgae (Chlorella sp.), cladocerans (Ceriodaphnia dubia), and bacteria (Vibrio fischeri) was related to elemental composition. Slag leachates with the highest concentrations of dissolved elements were the most toxic (10% effective concentration [EC10] ∼1%), whereas those with the lowest concentrations of elements were the least toxic (EC10 63-85%). It was not possible to determine which elements caused the observed toxicity; however, comparisons with contaminant guidelines and published toxicity data identified several elements of potential environmental concern. Low to moderate activities were measured for radionuclides in the U and Th decay chains in slags. Based on these data, some of the slags examined herein are potentially suitable for use as environmental amendments following ≥10 times dilution to ameliorate potential toxic effects because of leachate pH.

  6. Identifying/Quantifying Environmental Trade-offs Inherent in GHG Reduction Strategies for Coal-Fired Power.

    PubMed

    Schivley, Greg; Ingwersen, Wesley W; Marriott, Joe; Hawkins, Troy R; Skone, Timothy J

    2015-07-07

    Improvements to coal power plant technology and the cofired combustion of biomass promise direct greenhouse gas (GHG) reductions for existing coal-fired power plants. Questions remain as to what the reduction potentials are from a life cycle perspective and if it will result in unintended increases in impacts to air and water quality and human health. This study provides a unique analysis of the potential environmental impact reductions from upgrading existing subcritical pulverized coal power plants to increase their efficiency, improving environmental controls, cofiring biomass, and exporting steam for industrial use. The climate impacts are examined in both a traditional-100 year GWP-method and a time series analysis that accounts for emission and uptake timing over the life of the power plant. Compared to fleet average pulverized bed boilers (33% efficiency), we find that circulating fluidized bed boilers (39% efficiency) may provide GHG reductions of about 13% when using 100% coal and reductions of about 20-37% when cofiring with 30% biomass. Additional greenhouse gas reductions from combined heat and power are minimal if the steam coproduct displaces steam from an efficient natural gas boiler. These upgrades and cofiring biomass can also reduce other life cycle impacts, although there may be increased impacts to water quality (eutrophication) when using biomass from an intensely cultivated source. Climate change impacts are sensitive to the timing of emissions and carbon sequestration as well as the time horizon over which impacts are considered, particularly for long growth woody biomass.

  7. 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...

  8. 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…

  9. 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...

  10. 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

  11. 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.

  12. 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

  13. 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

  14. 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.

  15. 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.

  16. Mysid crustaceans as potential test organisms for the evaluation of environmental endocrine disruption: a review.

    PubMed

    Verslycke, Tim A; Fockedey, Nancy; McKenney, Charles L; Roast, Stephen D; Jones, Malcolm B; Mees, Jan; Janssen, Colin R

    2004-05-01

    Anthropogenic chemicals that disrupt the hormonal systems (endocrine disruptors) of wildlife species recently have become a widely investigated and politically charged issue. Invertebrates account for roughly 95% of all animals, yet surprisingly little effort has been made to understand their value in signaling potential environmental endocrine disruption. This omission largely can be attributed to the high diversity of invertebrates and the shortage of fundamental knowledge of their endocrine systems. Insects and crustaceans are exceptions and, as such, appear to be excellent candidates for evaluating the environmental consequences of chemically induced endocrine disruption. Mysid shrimp (Crustacea: Mysidacea) may serve as a viable surrogate for many crustaceans and have been put forward as suitable test organisms for the evaluation of endocrine disruption by several researchers and regulatory bodies (e.g., the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency). Despite the long-standing use of mysids in toxicity testing, little information exists on their endocrinology, and few studies have focused on the potential of these animals for evaluating the effects of hormone-disrupting compounds. Therefore, the question remains as to whether the current standardized mysid endpoints can be used or adapted to detect endocrine disruption, or if new procedures must be developed, specifically directed at evaluating hormone-regulated endpoints in these animals. This review summarizes the ecological importance of mysids in estuarine and marine ecosystems, their use in toxicity testing and environmental monitoring, and their endocrinology and important hormone-regulated processes to highlight their potential use in assessing environmental endocrine disruption.

  17. 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.

  18. 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.

  19. 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.

  20. 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

  1. 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

  2. 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

  3. 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

  4. 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.

  5. 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.

  6. Identifying Environmental and Social Factors Predisposing to Pathological Gambling Combining Standard Logistic Regression and Logic Learning Machine.

    PubMed

    Parodi, Stefano; Dosi, Corrado; Zambon, Antonella; Ferrari, Enrico; Muselli, Marco

    2017-03-02

    Identifying potential risk factors for problem gambling (PG) is of primary importance for planning preventive and therapeutic interventions. We illustrate a new approach based on the combination of standard logistic regression and an innovative method of supervised data mining (Logic Learning Machine or LLM). Data were taken from a pilot cross-sectional study to identify subjects with PG behaviour, assessed by two internationally validated scales (SOGS and Lie/Bet). Information was obtained from 251 gamblers recruited in six betting establishments. Data on socio-demographic characteristics, lifestyle and cognitive-related factors, and type, place and frequency of preferred gambling were obtained by a self-administered questionnaire. The following variables associated with PG were identified: instant gratification games, alcohol abuse, cognitive distortion, illegal behaviours and having started gambling with a relative or a friend. Furthermore, the combination of LLM and LR indicated the presence of two different types of PG, namely: (a) daily gamblers, more prone to illegal behaviour, with poor money management skills and who started gambling at an early age, and (b) non-daily gamblers, characterised by superstitious beliefs and a higher preference for immediate reward games. Finally, instant gratification games were strongly associated with the number of games usually played. Studies on gamblers habitually frequently betting shops are rare. The finding of different types of PG by habitual gamblers deserves further analysis in larger studies. Advanced data mining algorithms, like LLM, are powerful tools and potentially useful in identifying risk factors for PG.

  7. 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

  8. 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.

  9. 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.

  10. Assessing the Potential Environmental Consequences of a New Energetic Material: A Phased Approach

    DTIC Science & Technology

    2007-12-01

    Melting point • Ionization potential (2) QSAR approaches can also be used to estimate toxicological impact. Toxicity QSAR models can often... TOXICOLOGY STUDY NO. 87-XE-03N3-05 ASSESSING THE POTENTIAL ENVIRONMENTAL CONSEQUENCES OF A NEW ENERGETIC MATERIAL: A PHASED APPROACH...SEPTEMBER 2005 Published: December 2007 Approved for public release; distribution unlimited. Toxicology Study No. 87-XE-03N3-05

  11. Big Data in Chemical Toxicity Research: The Use of High-Throughput Screening Assays To Identify Potential Toxicants

    PubMed Central

    2015-01-01

    High-throughput screening (HTS) assays that measure the in vitro toxicity of environmental compounds have been widely applied as an alternative to in vivo animal tests of chemical toxicity. Current HTS studies provide the community with rich toxicology information that has the potential to be integrated into toxicity research. The available in vitro toxicity data is updated daily in structured formats (e.g., deposited into PubChem and other data-sharing web portals) or in an unstructured way (papers, laboratory reports, toxicity Web site updates, etc.). The information derived from the current toxicity data is so large and complex that it becomes difficult to process using available database management tools or traditional data processing applications. For this reason, it is necessary to develop a big data approach when conducting modern chemical toxicity research. In vitro data for a compound, obtained from meaningful bioassays, can be viewed as a response profile that gives detailed information about the compound’s ability to affect relevant biological proteins/receptors. This information is critical for the evaluation of complex bioactivities (e.g., animal toxicities) and grows rapidly as big data in toxicology communities. This review focuses mainly on the existing structured in vitro data (e.g., PubChem data sets) as response profiles for compounds of environmental interest (e.g., potential human/animal toxicants). Potential modeling and mining tools to use the current big data pool in chemical toxicity research are also described. PMID:25195622

  12. Big data in chemical toxicity research: the use of high-throughput screening assays to identify potential toxicants.

    PubMed

    Zhu, Hao; Zhang, Jun; Kim, Marlene T; Boison, Abena; Sedykh, Alexander; Moran, Kimberlee

    2014-10-20

    High-throughput screening (HTS) assays that measure the in vitro toxicity of environmental compounds have been widely applied as an alternative to in vivo animal tests of chemical toxicity. Current HTS studies provide the community with rich toxicology information that has the potential to be integrated into toxicity research. The available in vitro toxicity data is updated daily in structured formats (e.g., deposited into PubChem and other data-sharing web portals) or in an unstructured way (papers, laboratory reports, toxicity Web site updates, etc.). The information derived from the current toxicity data is so large and complex that it becomes difficult to process using available database management tools or traditional data processing applications. For this reason, it is necessary to develop a big data approach when conducting modern chemical toxicity research. In vitro data for a compound, obtained from meaningful bioassays, can be viewed as a response profile that gives detailed information about the compound's ability to affect relevant biological proteins/receptors. This information is critical for the evaluation of complex bioactivities (e.g., animal toxicities) and grows rapidly as big data in toxicology communities. This review focuses mainly on the existing structured in vitro data (e.g., PubChem data sets) as response profiles for compounds of environmental interest (e.g., potential human/animal toxicants). Potential modeling and mining tools to use the current big data pool in chemical toxicity research are also described.

  13. 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.

  14. 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

  15. 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

  16. Childhood Obesity Prevention in Childcare Settings: the Potential of Policy and Environmental Change Interventions.

    PubMed

    Lessard, Laura; Breck, Andrew

    2015-06-01

    Current obesity rates in young children are a serious public health concern; developing and implementing obesity prevention interventions in childcare settings is a promising avenue to address this issue. In recent years, there has been increasing focus on environmental and policy change interventions for this setting. Improving access to and quality of outdoor play spaces and implementing the Nutrition and Physical Activity Self-Assessment for Child Care (NAP SACC) are two promising environmental change strategies in this setting. Laws at the local, state, and federal level have also been implemented; New York City and Delaware are two jurisdictions that have passed policies and provided preliminary evidence of the potential of policy interventions to change child outcomes. A combination of programmatic, environmental, and policy change strategies will likely be most effective in maximizing the potential of childcare settings to promote healthy weight in children.

  17. 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

  18. Health Impact Assessment Practice and Potential for Integration within Environmental Impact and Strategic Environmental Assessments in Italy

    PubMed Central

    Linzalone, Nunzia; Assennato, Giorgio; Ballarini, Adele; Cadum, Ennio; Cirillo, Mario; Cori, Liliana; De Maio, Francesca; Musmeci, Loredana; Natali, Marinella; Rieti, Sabrina; Soggiu, Maria Eleonora; Bianchi, Fabrizio

    2014-01-01

    Avoiding or minimizing potential environmental impact is the driving idea behind protecting a population’s health via Environmental Impact Assessments (EIAs) and Strategic Environmental Assessments (SEAs). However, both are often carried out without any systematic approach. This paper describes the findings of a review of HIA, EIA and SEA experiences carried out by the authors, who act as institutional competent subjects at the national and regional levels in Italy. The analysis of how health is tackled in EIA and SEA procedures could support the definition of a protocol for the integration of HIA with EIA and SEA. Although EIA and SEA approaches include the aim of protecting health, significant technical and methodological gaps are present when assessing health systematically, and their basic principles regarding assessment are unsatisfactory for promoting and addressing healthcare concepts stated by the WHO. HIA is still poorly integrated into the decision-making process, screening and monitoring phases are only occasionally implemented, and operational details are not well-defined. The collaborative approach of institutions involved in environment and health is a core element in a systematic advancement toward supporting effective decisions and effective protection of the environment and health. At the Italian national level, the definition of guidelines and tools for HIA, also in relation with EIA and SEA, is of great interest. PMID:25493391

  19. MYSID CRUSTACEANS AS POTENTIAL TEST ORGANISMS FOR THE EVALUATION OF ENVIRONMENTAL ENDOCRINE DISRUPTORS: A REVIEW

    EPA Science Inventory

    Verslycke, Tim A., Nancy Fockedey, Charles L. McKenney, Jr., Stephen D. Roast, Malcolm B. Jones, Jan Mees and Colin R. Janssen. 2004. Mysid Crustaceans as Potential Test Organisms for the Evaluation of Environmental Endocrine Disruption: A Review. Environ. Toxicol. Chem. 23(5):12...

  20. HOLISTIC APPROACH FOR ASSESSING THE PRESENCE AND POTENTIAL IMPACTS OF WATERBORNE ENVIRONMENTAL CONTAMINANTS

    EPA Science Inventory

    As an integral part of our continuing research in environmental quality assessment approaches, we have developed a variety of passive integrative sampling devices widely applicable for use in defining the presence and potential impacts of a broad array of contaminants. The semipe...

  1. “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

  2. 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.

  3. Comparable measures of cognitive function in human infants and laboratory animals to identify environmental health risks to children.

    PubMed Central

    Sharbaugh, Carolyn; Viet, Susan Marie; Fraser, Alexa; McMaster, Suzanne B

    2003-01-01

    The importance of including neurodevelopmental end points in environmental studies is clear. A validated measure of cognitive function in human infants that also has a homologous or parallel test in laboratory animal studies will provide a valuable approach for large-scale studies. Such a comparable test will allow researchers to observe the effect of environmental neurotoxicants in animals and relate those findings to humans. In this article, we present the results of a review of post-1990, peer-reviewed literature and current research examining measures of cognitive function that can be applied to both human infants (0-12 months old) and laboratory animals. We begin with a discussion of the definition of cognitive function and important considerations in cross-species research. We then describe identified comparable measures, providing a description of the test in human infants and animal subjects. Available information on test reliability, validity, and population norms, as well as test limitations and constraints, is also presented. PMID:14527843

  4. Mining environmental high-throughput sequence data sets to identify divergent amplicon clusters for phylogenetic reconstruction and morphotype visualization.

    PubMed

    Gimmler, Anna; Stoeck, Thorsten

    2015-08-01

    Environmental high-throughput sequencing (envHTS) is a very powerful tool, which in protistan ecology is predominantly used for the exploration of diversity and its geographic and local patterns. We here used a pyrosequenced V4-SSU rDNA data set from a solar saltern pond as test case to exploit such massive protistan amplicon data sets beyond this descriptive purpose. Therefore, we combined a Swarm-based blastn network including 11 579 ciliate V4 amplicons to identify divergent amplicon clusters with targeted polymerase chain reaction (PCR) primer design for full-length small subunit of the ribosomal DNA retrieval and probe design for fluorescence in situ hybridization (FISH). This powerful strategy allows to benefit from envHTS data sets to (i) reveal the phylogenetic position of the taxon behind divergent amplicons; (ii) improve phylogenetic resolution and evolutionary history of specific taxon groups; (iii) solidly assess an amplicons (species') degree of similarity to its closest described relative; (iv) visualize the morphotype behind a divergent amplicons cluster; (v) rapidly FISH screen many environmental samples for geographic/habitat distribution and abundances of the respective organism and (vi) to monitor the success of enrichment strategies in live samples for cultivation and isolation of the respective organisms.

  5. Identifying High-Risk Populations of Tuberculosis Using Environmental Factors and GIS Based Multi-Criteria Decision Making Method

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rasam, A. R. Abdul; Shariff, N. M.; Dony, J. F.

    2016-09-01

    Development of an innovative method to enhance the detection of tuberculosis (TB) in Malaysia is the latest agenda of the Ministry of Health. Therefore, a geographical information system (GIS) based index model is proposed as an alternative method for defining potential high-risk areas of local TB cases at Section U19, Shah Alam. It is adopted a spatial multi-criteria decision making (MCDM) method for ranking environmental risk factors of the disease in a standardised five-score scale. Scale 1 and 5 illustrate the lowest and the highest risk of the TB spread respectively, while scale from 3 to 5 is included as a potential risk level. These standardised scale values are then combined with expert normalised weights (0 to 1) to calculate the overall index values and produce a TB ranked map using a GIS overlay analysis and weighted linear combination. It is discovered that 71.43% of the Section is potential as TB high risk areas particularly at urban and densely populated settings. This predictive result is also reliable with the current real cases in 2015 by 76.00% accuracy. A GIS based MCDM method has demonstrated analytical capabilities in targeting high-risk spots and TB surveillance monitoring system of the country, but the result could be strengthened by applying other uncertainty assessment method.

  6. 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.

  7. Speciation Methods Used to Assess Potential Health Effects of Toxic Metals in Environmental Materials

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Wolf, Ruth E.; Morman, Suzette A.; Plumlee, Geoffrey S.

    2008-01-01

    Assessing potential exposures to toxic metals or metalloids such as arsenic and chromium in environmental materials is important in protecting public health. The chemical form of an element in, or released from, a material is also important, since some forms, such as Cr(VI), are more toxic than others, for example, Cr(III). We have used a variety of procedures to assess potential exposures to hexavalent chromium in ash and burned soils from October 2007 southern California wildfires. Synthetic lung-fluid and de-ionized water extractions simulate release in the lungs and potential environmental releases due to rainfall. Extracts were analyzed for specific chromium and arsenic species using HPLC-ICP-MS methodology. Results indicate that the highly oxidizing environment in wildfires promotes some chromium conversion to Cr(VI), and that the caustic alkalinity of ash enhances Cr(VI) release and stability in lung fluids and rainfall.

  8. A brief overview of the potential environmental hazards of ionic liquids.

    PubMed

    Bubalo, Marina Cvjetko; Radošević, Kristina; Redovniković, Ivana Radojčić; Halambek, Jasna; Srček, Višnja Gaurina

    2014-01-01

    Over past decades ionic liquids, a promising alternative to traditional organic solvents, have been dramatically expanding in popularity as a new generation of chemicals with potential uses in various areas in industry. In the literature these compounds have often been referred to as environmentally friendly; however, in recent years the perception of their greenness dramatically changed as the scientific community began to proactively assess the risk of their application based on the entire life-cycle. This review gives a brief overview of the current knowledge regarding the potential risks linked to the application of ionic liquids - from preparation to their disposal, with special emphasis on their potential environmental impacts and future directions in designing inherently safer ionic liquids.

  9. Chemical and biological methods for the analysis and remediation of environmental contaminants frequently identified at superfund sites

    SciTech Connect

    Melinda Christine Wiles

    2004-08-15

    Substantial environmental contamination has occurred from coal tar creosote and pentachlorophenol (C5P) in wood preserving solutions. The present studies focused on the characterization and remediation of these contaminants. The first objective was to delineate a sequence of biological changes caused by chlorinated phenol (CP) exposure. The second study was to develop multi-functional sorbents to remediate CPs and other components of wood preserving waste from groundwater. Following water remediation, the final aim of this work was to explore the safety of the parent clay minerals as potential enterosorbents for contaminants ingested in water and food. Based on evaluations of toxicity and neutron activation analysis of tissues, no significant differences were observed between animals receiving clay supplements and control animals, with the exception of slightly decreased brain Rb in animals ingesting clay. Overall, the results suggest that neither clay mineral, at relatively high dietary concentrations, influences mineral uptake or utilization in the pregnant rat. 420 refs., 28 figs, 15 tabs.

  10. 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

  11. Substance flow analysis and assessment of environmental exposure potential for triclosan in mainland China.

    PubMed

    Huang, Chu-Long; Ma, Hwong-Wen; Yu, Chang-Ping

    2014-11-15

    Triclosan (TCS) is a widely-used antimicrobial agent in many consumer products around the world, and China is a major producer and consumer of TCS. In this study substance flow analysis (SFA) was used to construct a static model of anthropogenic TCS metabolism in China in 2008. The systematic SFA results were used to determine possible exposure pathways and trends in environmental exposure potential through different pathways. TCS discharged in wastewater mainly flowed into surface water sediment, ocean, and soil, where it accumulates in aquatic and agricultural products that may pose a higher risk to human health than brief exposure during consumption. Only 22% of TCS discharged was removed in the built environment with the remainder discharged into the natural environment, indicating that anthropogenic TCS metabolism in China is unsustainable. Per capita TCS consumption increased 209% from 2003 to 2012, resulting in increased discharge and accumulation in the environment. If current trends continue, it will increase to 713 mg capita(-1) yr(-1) in 2015 and 957 mg capita(-1) yr(-1) in 2020. Accordingly, annual environmental exposure potential will increase from 388 mg capita(-1) in 2008 to 557 mg capita(-1) in 2015 and 747 mg capita(-1) in 2020, indicating an increasing trend of exposure to environmental TCS. Results of Pearson correlation analysis suggested that feasible countermeasures to reduce environmental exposure potential for triclosan would include encouraging the development of small cities, raising awareness of health risks, nurturing environmentally-friendly consumer values, and improving the environmental performance of TCS-containing products.

  12. Pile Driving at the New Bridge at Tappan Zee: Potential Environmental Impacts.

    PubMed

    Popper, Arthur N; Moese, Mark; Rollino, John; Krebs, Justin; Racca, Roberto; Martin, Bruce; Zeddies, David; MacGillivray, Alexander; Jacobs, Fred

    2016-01-01

    A new bridge will be constructed to replace the aging Tappan Zee Bridge over the Hudson River in New York. Construction will potentially result in hydroacoustic impacts to the local fish fauna. As a consequence, a substantial environmental impact analysis had to be conducted to obtain construction permits. This paper describes the process of environmental analysis and some of the results of the studies that led up to the final permitting. The process included modeling of pile-driving acoustics, analysis of river ambient noise, analysis of test piling, and observations on fish behavior during these tests.

  13. Space Toxicology: Environmental Health Considerations during Spaceflight Operations and Potential Paths for Research

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Khan-Mayberry, Noreen N.; Sundaresan, Alemalu

    2009-01-01

    Space Toxicology is a specialized discipline for spaceflight, space habitation and occupation of celestial bodies including planets, moons and asteroids [1]. Astronaut explorers face unique challenges to their health while working and living with limited resources for rescue and medical care during space operation. At its core the practice of space toxicology to identify, assess and predict potential chemical contaminants and limit the astronaut s exposure to these environmental factors in order to protect crew health. Space toxicologists are also charged with setting safe exposure limits that will protect the astronaut against a multitude of chemical exposures, in a physiologically altered state. In order to maintain sustained occupation in space, toxicological risks are gauged and managed within the context of isolation, continual exposures, reuse of air and water, limited rescue options, and the necessary use of highly toxic compounds required for propulsion. As the space program move towards human presence and exploration other celestial bodies in situ toxicological risks, such as inhalation of unusual and/or reactive mineral dusts must also be analyzed and controlled. Placing humans for long-term presence in space creates several problems and challenges to the long-term health of the crew, such as bone-loss and immunological challenges and has spurred research into acute, chronic and episodic exposure of the pulmonary system to mineral dusts [2]. NASA has demonstrated that lunar soil contains several types of reactive dusts, including an extremely fine respirable component. In order to protect astronaut health, NASA is now investigating the toxicity of this unique class of dusts. Understanding how these reactive components behave "biochemically" in a moisture-rich pulmonary environment will aid in determining how toxic these particles are to humans. The data obtained from toxicological examination of lunar dusts will determine the human risk criteria for lunar

  14. Potential environmental contaminant risks to avian species at important bird areas in the northeastern United States

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Rattner, B.A.; Ackerson, B.K.

    2007-01-01

    Environmental contaminants, acting at molecular through population levels of biological organization, can have profound effects upon birds. A screening level risk assessment was conducted that examined potential contaminant threats at 52 Important Bird Areas (IBAs) in the northeastern Atlantic coast drainage. Using geographic information system methodology, data layers describing or integrating pollutant hazards (impaired waters, fish or wildlife consumption advisories, toxic release inventory data, estimated pesticide use and hazard) were overlaid on buffered IBA boundaries, and the relative contaminant threat for each site was ranked. The 10 sites identified as having the greatest contaminant threats included Jefferson National Forest, Stewart B. McKinney National Wildlife Refuge, Great Dismal Swamp National Wildlife Refuge, Blue Ridge Parkway, Shenandoah National Park, Adirondack Park, Edwin B. Forsythe National Wildlife Refuge, George Washington National Forest, Green Mountain National Forest, and Long Island Piping Plover Beaches. These sites accounted for over 50% of the entire study area, and in general had moderate to high percentages of impaired waters, fish consumption advisories related to mercury and PCBs, and were located in counties with substantial application rates of pesticides known to be toxic to birds. Avian species at these IBAs include Federally endangered Roseate terns (Sterna dougallii), threatened piping plovers (Charadrius melodus), neotropical migrants, Bicknell?s thrush (Catharus bicknelli), Swainson?s warbler (Limnothlypis swainsonii) and wintering brant geese (Branta bernicla). Extant data for free-ranging birds from the Contaminant Exposure and Effects--Terrestrial Vertebrates database were examined within the buffered boundaries of each IBA, and for a moderate number of sites there was qualitative concordance between the perceived risk and actual contaminant exposure data. However, several of the IBAs with substantial contaminant

  15. 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.

  16. 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

  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. Cellulolytic potential under environmental changes in microbial communities from grassland litter

    PubMed Central

    Berlemont, Renaud; Allison, Steven D.; Weihe, Claudia; Lu, Ying; Brodie, Eoin L.; Martiny, Jennifer B. H.; Martiny, Adam C.

    2014-01-01

    In many ecosystems, global changes are likely to profoundly affect microorganisms. In Southern California, changes in precipitation and nitrogen deposition may influence the composition and functional potential of microbial communities and their resulting ability to degrade plant material. To test whether such environmental changes impact the distribution of functional groups involved in leaf litter degradation, we determined how the genomic diversity of microbial communities in a semi-arid grassland ecosystem changed under reduced precipitation or increased N deposition. We monitored communities seasonally over a period of 2 years to place environmental change responses into the context of natural variation. Fungal and bacterial communities displayed strong seasonal patterns, Fungi being mostly detected during the dry season whereas Bacteria were common during wet periods. Most putative cellulose degraders were associated with 33 bacterial genera and predicted to constitute 18% of the microbial community. Precipitation reduction reduced bacterial abundance and cellulolytic potential whereas nitrogen addition did not affect the cellulolytic potential of the microbial community. Finally, we detected a strong correlation between the frequencies of genera of putative cellulose degraders and cellulase genes. Thus, microbial taxonomic composition was predictive of cellulolytic potential. This work provides a framework for how environmental changes affect microorganisms responsible for plant litter deconstruction. PMID:25505459

  19. Cellulolytic potential under environmental changes in microbial communities from grassland litter

    SciTech Connect

    Berlemont, Renaud; Allison, Steven D.; Weihe, Claudia; Lu, Ying; Brodie, Eoin L.; Martiny, Jennifer B. H.; Martiny, Adam C.

    2014-11-25

    In many ecosystems, global changes are likely to profoundly affect microorganisms. In Southern California, changes in precipitation and nitrogen deposition may influence the composition and functional potential of microbial communities and their resulting ability to degrade plant material. To test whether such environmental changes impact the distribution of functional groups involved in leaf litter degradation, we determined how the genomic diversity of microbial communities in a semi-arid grassland ecosystem changed under reduced precipitation or increased N deposition. We monitored communities seasonally over a period of 2 years to place environmental change responses into the context of natural variation. Fungal and bacterial communities displayed strong seasonal patterns, Fungi being mostly detected during the dry season whereas Bacteria were common during wet periods. Most putative cellulose degraders were associated with 33 bacterial genera and predicted to constitute 18% of the microbial community. Precipitation reduction reduced bacterial abundance and cellulolytic potential whereas nitrogen addition did not affect the cellulolytic potential of the microbial community. Finally, we detected a strong correlation between the frequencies of genera of putative cellulose degraders and cellulase genes. Thus, microbial taxonomic composition was predictive of cellulolytic potential. This work provides a framework for how environmental changes affect microorganisms responsible for plant litter deconstruction.

  20. Cellulolytic potential under environmental changes in microbial communities from grassland litter

    DOE PAGES

    Berlemont, Renaud; Allison, Steven D.; Weihe, Claudia; ...

    2014-11-25

    In many ecosystems, global changes are likely to profoundly affect microorganisms. In Southern California, changes in precipitation and nitrogen deposition may influence the composition and functional potential of microbial communities and their resulting ability to degrade plant material. To test whether such environmental changes impact the distribution of functional groups involved in leaf litter degradation, we determined how the genomic diversity of microbial communities in a semi-arid grassland ecosystem changed under reduced precipitation or increased N deposition. We monitored communities seasonally over a period of 2 years to place environmental change responses into the context of natural variation. Fungal andmore » bacterial communities displayed strong seasonal patterns, Fungi being mostly detected during the dry season whereas Bacteria were common during wet periods. Most putative cellulose degraders were associated with 33 bacterial genera and predicted to constitute 18% of the microbial community. Precipitation reduction reduced bacterial abundance and cellulolytic potential whereas nitrogen addition did not affect the cellulolytic potential of the microbial community. Finally, we detected a strong correlation between the frequencies of genera of putative cellulose degraders and cellulase genes. Thus, microbial taxonomic composition was predictive of cellulolytic potential. This work provides a framework for how environmental changes affect microorganisms responsible for plant litter deconstruction.« less

  1. 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.

  2. Environmental potentials of policy instruments to mitigate nutrient emissions in Chinese livestock production.

    PubMed

    Zheng, Chaohui; Liu, Yi; Bluemling, Bettina; Mol, Arthur P J; Chen, Jining

    2015-01-01

    To minimize negative environmental impact of livestock production, policy-makers face a challenge to design and implement more effective policy instruments for livestock farmers at different scales. This research builds an assessment framework on the basis of an agent-based model, named ANEM, to explore nutrient mitigation potentials of five policy instruments, using pig production in Zhongjiang county, southwest China, as the empirical filling. The effects of different policy scenarios are simulated and compared using four indicators and differentiating between small, medium and large scale pig farms. Technology standards, biogas subsidies and information provisioning prove to be the most effective policies, while pollution fees and manure markets fail to environmentally improve manure management in pig livestock farming. Medium-scale farms are the more relevant scale category for a more environmentally sound development of Chinese livestock production. A number of policy recommendations are formulated as conclusion, as well as some limitations and prospects of the simulations are discussed.

  3. Potential CERCLA reauthorization issues relevant to US DOE`s Environmental Restoration Program

    SciTech Connect

    Siegel, M.R.; McKinney, M.D.; Jaksch, J.A.; Dailey, R.L.

    1993-02-01

    The Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation, and Liability Act (CERCLA) is currently scheduled to be reauthorized in 1994. The US Department of Energy (DOE) has a significant stake in CERCLA reauthorization. CERCLA, along with its implementing regulation, the National Contingency Plan (NCP), is the principal legal authority governing DOE`s environmental restoration program. The manner in which CERCLA-related issues are identified, evaluated, and dispatched may have a substantial impact on DOE`s ability to conduct its environmental restoration program. A number of issues that impact DOE`s environmental restoration program could be addressed through CERCLA reauthorization. These issues include the need to (1) address how the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) should be integrated into DOE CERCLA actions, (2) facilitate the streamlining of the Superfund process at DOE sites, (3) address the conflicts between the requirements of CERCLA and the Resource Conservation and Recovery Act (RCRA) that are especially relevant to DOE, (4) examine the criteria for waiving applicable or relevant and appropriate requirements (ARARs) at DOE sites, and (5) delineate the appropriate use of institutional controls at DOE sites.

  4. The potential of current- and wind-driven transport for environmental management of the Baltic Sea.

    PubMed

    Soomere, Tarmo; Döös, Kristofer; Lehmann, Andreas; Meier, H E Markus; Murawski, Jens; Myrberg, Kai; Stanev, Emil

    2014-02-01

    The ever increasing impact of the marine industry and transport on vulnerable sea areas puts the marine environment under exceptional pressure and calls for inspired methods for mitigating the impact of the related risks. We describe a method for preventive reduction of remote environmental risks caused by the shipping and maritime industry that are transported by surface currents and wind impact to the coasts. This method is based on characterizing systematically the damaging potential of the offshore areas in terms of potential transport to vulnerable regions of an oil spill or other pollution that has occurred in a particular area. The resulting maps of probabilities of pollution to be transported to the nearshore and the time it takes for the pollution to reach the nearshore are used to design environmentally optimized fairways for the Gulf of Finland, Baltic Proper, and south-western Baltic Sea.

  5. Identification of Chromobacterium violaceum genes with potential biotechnological application in environmental detoxification.

    PubMed

    Carepo, Marta S P; Azevedo, Juliana S Nina de; Porto, Jorge I R; Bentes-Sousa, Alexandra R; Batista, Jacqueline da Silva; Silva, Artur L C da; Schneider, Maria P C

    2004-03-31

    Chromobacterium violaceum is a Gram-negative bacterium found in a wide variety of tropical and subtropical ecosystems. The complete genome sequence of C. violaceum ATCC 12472 is now available, and it has considerable biotechnological potential for various applications, such as environmental detoxification, as well as medical and agricultural use. We examined the biotechnological potential of C. violaceum for environmental detoxification. Three operons, comprising the ars operon, involved in arsenic resistance, the cyn operon, involved in cyanate detoxification, and the hcn operon, encoding a cyanase, responsible for biogenic production of cyanide, as well as an open reading frame, encoding an acid dehalogenase, were analyzed in detail. Probable catalytic mechanisms for the enzymes were determined, based on amino acid sequence comparisons and on published structural information for these types of proteins.

  6. Potential problems with environmental sound barriers when used in mitigating surface transportation noise.

    PubMed

    Arenas, Jorge P

    2008-11-01

    The public, increasingly well-informed about the problem of excessive noise, is taking actions for the development of new transport infrastructure projects and improvement of existing infrastructure. In addition, many countries have implemented mandatory Environmental Impact Assessment procedures. As a result, the construction of sound barriers has become a common measure, which can be used by an agency to mitigate potentially significant noise impacts. A sound barrier, eventually, will become part of the surrounding landscape and could be a cause of impact for ecosystems, the road users and those who live alongside the road. Basically, this article discusses these potential effects in the context of environmental assessment procedures. In addition, results of a pilot survey conducted at a residential area affected by the construction of a barrier are presented. Although most residents felt that sleeping conditions improved after the barrier was built, most important negative reactions are the loss of sunlight and visual impact.

  7. Catalytic potential of selected metal ions for bioleaching, and potential techno-economic and environmental issues: A critical review.

    PubMed

    Pathak, Ashish; Morrison, Liam; Healy, Mark Gerard

    2017-04-01

    Bioleaching is considered to be a low-cost, eco-friendly technique for leaching valuable metals from a variety of matrixes. However, the inherent slow dissolution kinetics and low metal leaching yields have restricted its wider commercial applicability. Recent advancements in bio-hydrometallurgy have suggested that these critical issues can be successfully alleviated through the addition of a catalyst. The catalyzing properties of a variety of metals ions (Ag(+), Hg(++), Bi(+++), Cu(++), Co(++) etc.) during bioleaching have been successfully demonstrated. In this article, the role and mechanisms of these metal species in catalyzing bioleaching from different minerals (chalcopyrite, complex sulfides, etc.) and waste materials (spent batteries) are reviewed, techno-economic and environmental challenges associated with the use of metals ions as catalysts are identified, and future prospectives are discussed. Based on the analysis, it is suggested that metal ion-catalyzed bioleaching will play a key role in the development of future industrial bio-hydrometallurgical processes.

  8. 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.

  9. Predicting the Potential for Invasive Species Establishment by Using Environmental Tolerance Data

    DTIC Science & Technology

    2010-05-01

    ERDC/TN ANSRP-10-2 May 2010 1 Predicting the Potential for Invasive Species Establishment by Using Environmental Tolerance Data by Judy F...world where common carp have established , thus increasing the likelihood that the species would become estab- lished and widespread throughout the...Carp), Limnoperna fortunei (Asian mussel) and Potamopyrgus antipodarum (New Zealand mud snail) (Chen et al. 2007; Loo et al. 2007). A GARP model was

  10. Assessing the Potential Environmental Consequences of a New Energetic Material: A Phased Approach, September 2005

    DTIC Science & Technology

    2007-12-01

    there are no reliable alternatives to animal testing in the determination of toxicity. QSARs are only as reliable as the corroborating toxicological ...2) QSAR approaches can also be used to estimate toxicological impact. Toxicity QSAR models can often predict many toxicity parameters without... Toxicology Study No. 87-XE-03N3-05, Assessing the Potential Environmental Consequences of a New Energetic Material: A Phased Approach, September 2005 1

  11. Fiber contamination of vermiculites: a potential occupational and environmental health hazard.

    PubMed

    Moatamed, F; Lockey, J E; Parry, W T

    1986-10-01

    Vermiculite ores from Montana, Virginia, and South Africa have been analyzed for the presence of amphibole contamination. Fibrous actinolite was found in unexpanded Montana vermiculite ore at a maximum concentration of 2.0%. The fibers persisted in the expanded ore at a maximum concentration of 0.6%. Actinolite was also found in the Virginia vermiculite ore but at a lower concentration and mostly as cleavage fragments with low length-to-width ratios. South African ore contained rare anthophyllite fibers also with low length-to-width ratios. Vermiculite ores have the potential for amphibole contamination and can represent potential health hazards without proper occupational and environmental control measures.

  12. Fiber contamination of vermiculites: a potential occupational and environmental health hazard

    SciTech Connect

    Moatamed, F.; Lockey, J.E.; Parry, W.T.

    1986-10-01

    Vermiculite ores from Montana, Virginia, and South Africa have been analyzed for the presence of amphibole contamination. Fibrous actinolite was found in unexpanded Montana vermiculite ore at a maximum concentration of 0.2%. The fibers persisted in the expanded ore at a maximum concentration of 0.6%. Actinolite was also found in the Virginia vermiculite ore but at a lower concentration and mostly as cleavage fragments with low length-to-width ratios. South African ore contained rare anthophyllite fibers also with low length-to-width ratios. Vermiculite ores have the potential for amphibole contamination and can represent potential health hazards without proper occupational and environmental control measures.

  13. 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

  14. 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

  15. 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.

  16. Exploring the potential environmental functions of viable but non-culturable bacteria.

    PubMed

    Su, Xiaomei; Chen, Xi; Hu, Jinxing; Shen, Chaofeng; Ding, Linxian

    2013-12-01

    A conventional plate count is the most commonly employed method to estimate the number of living bacteria in environmental samples. In fact, judging the level of viable culture by plate count is limited, because it is often several orders of magnitude less than the number of living bacteria actually present. Most of the bacteria are in "viable but non-culturable" (VBNC) state, whose cells are intact and alive and can resuscitate when surrounding conditions are more favorable. The most exciting recent development in resuscitating VBNC bacteria is a bacterial cytokine, namely, the resuscitation-promoting factor (Rpf), secreted by Micrococcus luteus, which promotes the resuscitation and growth of high G+C Gram-positive organisms, including some species of the genus Mycobacterium. However, most of studies deal with VBNC bacteria only from the point of view of medicine and epidemiology. It is therefore of great significance to research whether these VBNC state bacteria also possess some useful environmental capabilities, such as degradation, flocculation, etc. Further studies are needed to elucidate the possible environmental role of the VBNC bacteria, rather than only considering their role as potential pathogens from the point view of epidemiology and public health. We have studied the resuscitation of these VBNC bacteria in polluted environments by adding culture supernatant containing Rpf from M. luteus, and it was found that, as a huge microbial resource, VBNC bacteria could provide important answers to dealing with existing problems of environmental pollution. This mini-review will provide new insight for considering the potentially environmental functions of VBNC bacteria.

  17. 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

  18. A framework to gauge the epidemic potential of plant pathogens in environmental reservoirs: the example of kiwifruit canker.

    PubMed

    Bartoli, Claudia; Lamichhane, Jay Ram; Berge, Odile; Guilbaud, Caroline; Varvaro, Leonardo; Balestra, Giorgio M; Vinatzer, Boris A; Morris, Cindy E

    2015-02-01

    New economically important diseases on crops and forest trees emerge recurrently. An understanding of where new pathogenic lines come from and how they evolve is fundamental for the deployment of accurate surveillance methods. We used kiwifruit bacterial canker as a model to assess the importance of potential reservoirs of new pathogenic lineages. The current kiwifruit canker epidemic is at least the fourth outbreak of the disease on kiwifruit caused by Pseudomonas syringae in the mere 50 years in which this crop has been cultivated worldwide, with each outbreak being caused by different genetic lines of the bacterium. Here, we ask whether strains in natural (non-agricultural) environments could cause future epidemics of canker on kiwifruit. To answer this question, we evaluated the pathogenicity, endophytic colonization capacity and competitiveness on kiwifruit of P. syringae strains genetically similar to epidemic strains and originally isolated from aquatic and subalpine habitats. All environmental strains possessing an operon involved in the degradation of aromatic compounds via the catechol pathway grew endophytically and caused symptoms in kiwifruit vascular tissue. Environmental and epidemic strains showed a wide host range, revealing their potential as future pathogens of a variety of hosts. Environmental strains co-existed endophytically with CFBP 7286, an epidemic strain, and shared about 20 virulence genes, but were missing six virulence genes found in all epidemic strains. By identifying the specific gene content in genetic backgrounds similar to known epidemic strains, we developed criteria to assess the epidemic potential and to survey for such strains as a means of forecasting and managing disease emergence.

  19. 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

  20. Prioritizing agricultural pesticides used in South Africa based on their environmental mobility and potential human health effects.

    PubMed

    Dabrowski, James Michael; Shadung, Justinus Madimetja; Wepener, Victor

    2014-01-01

    South Africa is the largest user of pesticides in sub-Saharan Africa and many studies have highlighted the occurrence of pesticides in water resources. Poor management of water treatment facilities in combination with a relatively high dependency on untreated water from boreholes and rivers creates the potential for exposure of human communities to pesticides and their associated health effects. Pesticide use, physicochemical and toxicity data was therefore used to prioritize pesticides in terms of their potential risk to human health. After eliminating pesticides used in very low quantities, four indices were used to prioritize active ingredients applied in excess of 1000 kg per annum; the quantity index (QI) which ranked pesticides in terms of the quantity of their use; the toxicity potential index (TP) which ranked pesticides according to scores derived for their potential to cause five health effects (endocrine disruption, carcinogenicity, teratogenicity, mutagenicity and neurotoxicity); hazard potential index (HP) which multiplied the TP by an exposure potential score determined by the GUS index for each pesticide (to provide an indication of environmental hazard); and weighted hazard potential (WHP), which multiplied the HP for a pesticide by the ratio of its use to the total use of all pesticides in the country. The top 25 pesticides occurring in each of these indices were identified as priority pesticides, resulting in a combined total of 69 priority pesticides. A principal component analysis identified the indices that were most important in determining why a specific pesticide was included in the final priority list. As crop specific application pesticide use data was available it was possible to identify crops to which priority pesticides were applied to. Furthermore it was possible to prioritize crops in terms of the specific pesticide applied to the crop (by expressing the WHP as a ratio of the total amount of pesticide applied to the crop to the total

  1. Potential External Contamination with Bisphenol A and Other Ubiquitous Organic Environmental Chemicals during Biomonitoring Analysis: An Elusive Laboratory Challenge

    PubMed Central

    Ye, Xiaoyun; Zhou, Xiaoliu; Hennings, Ryan; Kramer, Joshua

    2013-01-01

    Background: Biomonitoring studies are conducted to assess internal dose (i.e., body burden) to environmental chemicals. However, because of the ubiquitous presence in the environment of some of these chemicals, such as bisphenol A (BPA), external contamination during handling and analysis of the biospecimens collected for biomonitoring evaluations could compromise the reported concentrations of such chemicals. Objectives: We examined the contamination with the target analytes during analysis of biological specimens in biomonitoring laboratories equipped with state-of-the-art analytical instrumentation. Discussions: We present several case studies using the quantitative determination of BPA and other organic chemicals (i.e., benzophenone-3, triclosan, parabens) in human urine, milk, and serum to identify potential contamination sources when the biomarkers measured are ubiquitous environmental contaminants. Conclusions: Contamination with target analytes during biomonitoring analysis could result from solvents and reagents, the experimental apparatus used, the laboratory environment, and/or even the analyst. For biomonotoring data to be valid—even when obtained from high-quality analytical methods and good laboratory practices—the following practices must be followed to identify and track unintended contamination with the target analytes during analysis of the biological specimens: strict quality control measures including use of laboratory blanks; replicate analyses; engineering controls (e.g., clean rooms, biosafety cabinets) as needed; and homogeneous matrix-based quality control materials within the expected concentration ranges of the study samples. PMID:23458838

  2. Identifying environmental variables explaining genotype-by-environment interaction for body weight of rainbow trout (Onchorynchus mykiss): reaction norm and factor analytic models

    PubMed Central

    2014-01-01

    Background Identifying the relevant environmental variables that cause GxE interaction is often difficult when they cannot be experimentally manipulated. Two statistical approaches can be applied to address this question. When data on candidate environmental variables are available, GxE interaction can be quantified as a function of specific environmental variables using a reaction norm model. Alternatively, a factor analytic model can be used to identify the latent common factor that explains GxE interaction. This factor can be correlated with known environmental variables to identify those that are relevant. Previously, we reported a significant GxE interaction for body weight at harvest in rainbow trout reared on three continents. Here we explore their possible causes. Methods Reaction norm and factor analytic models were used to identify which environmental variables (age at harvest, water temperature, oxygen, and photoperiod) may have caused the observed GxE interaction. Data on body weight at harvest was recorded on 8976 offspring reared in various locations: (1) a breeding environment in the USA (nucleus), (2) a recirculating aquaculture system in the Freshwater Institute in West Virginia, USA, (3) a high-altitude farm in Peru, and (4) a low-water temperature farm in Germany. Akaike and Bayesian information criteria were used to compare models. Results The combination of days to harvest multiplied with daily temperature (Day*Degree) and photoperiod were identified by the reaction norm model as the environmental variables responsible for the GxE interaction. The latent common factor that was identified by the factor analytic model showed the highest correlation with Day*Degree. Day*Degree and photoperiod were the environmental variables that differed most between Peru and other environments. Akaike and Bayesian information criteria indicated that the factor analytical model was more parsimonious than the reaction norm model. Conclusions Day*Degree and

  3. Genetic Structure and Potential Environmental Determinants of Local Genetic Diversity in Japanese Honeybees (Apis cerana japonica)

    PubMed Central

    Nagamitsu, Teruyoshi; Yasuda, Mika; Saito-Morooka, Fuki; Inoue, Maki N.; Nishiyama, Mio; Goka, Koichi; Sugiura, Shinji; Maeto, Kaoru; Okabe, Kimiko; Taki, Hisatomo

    2016-01-01

    Declines in honeybee populations have been a recent concern. Although causes of the declines remain unclear, environmental factors may be responsible. We focused on the potential environmental determinants of local populations of wild honeybees, Apis cerana japonica, in Japan. This subspecies has little genetic variation in terms of its mitochondrial DNA sequences, and genetic variations at nuclear loci are as yet unknown. We estimated the genetic structure and environmental determinants of local genetic diversity in nuclear microsatellite genotypes of fathers and mothers, inferred from workers collected at 139 sites. The genotypes of fathers and mothers showed weak isolation by distance and negligible genetic structure. The local genetic diversity was high in central Japan, decreasing toward the peripheries, and depended on the climate and land use characteristics of the sites. The local genetic diversity decreased as the annual precipitation increased, and increased as the proportion of urban and paddy field areas increased. Positive effects of natural forest area, which have also been observed in terms of forager abundance in farms, were not detected with respect to the local genetic diversity. The findings suggest that A. cerana japonica forms a single population connected by gene flow in its main distributional range, and that climate and landscape properties potentially affect its local genetic diversity. PMID:27898704

  4. 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

  5. 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.

  6. 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

  7. Suitable Environmental Ranges for Potential Coral Reef Habitats in the Tropical Ocean

    PubMed Central

    Guan, Yi; Hohn, Sönke; Merico, Agostino

    2015-01-01

    Coral reefs are found within a limited range of environmental conditions or tolerance limits. Estimating these limits is a critical prerequisite for understanding the impacts of climate change on the biogeography of coral reefs. Here we used the diagnostic model ReefHab to determine the current environmental tolerance limits for coral reefs and the global distribution of potential coral reef habitats as a function of six factors: temperature, salinity, nitrate, phosphate, aragonite saturation state, and light. To determine these tolerance limits, we extracted maximum and minimum values of all environmental variables in corresponding locations where coral reefs are present. We found that the global, annually averaged tolerance limits for coral reefs are 21.7—29.6 °C for temperature, 28.7—40.4 psu for salinity, 4.51 μmol L-1 for nitrate, 0.63 μmol L-1 for phosphate, and 2.82 for aragonite saturation state. The averaged minimum light intensity in coral reefs is 450 μmol photons m-2 s-1. The global area of potential reef habitats calculated by the model is 330.5 × 103 km2. Compared with previous studies, the tolerance limits for temperature, salinity, and nutrients have not changed much, whereas the minimum value of aragonite saturation in coral reef waters has decreased from 3.28 to 2.82. The potential reef habitat area calculated with ReefHab is about 121×103 km2 larger than the area estimated from the charted reefs, suggesting that the growth potential of coral reefs is higher than currently observed. PMID:26030287

  8. High-Throughput Carbon Substrate Profiling of Mycobacterium ulcerans Suggests Potential Environmental Reservoirs

    PubMed Central

    Militello, Muriel; Drancourt, Michel

    2017-01-01

    Background Mycobacterium ulcerans is a close derivative of Mycobacterium marinum and the agent of Buruli ulcer in some tropical countries. Epidemiological and environmental studies pointed towards stagnant water ecosystems as potential sources of M. ulcerans, yet the ultimate reservoirs remain elusive. We hypothesized that carbon substrate determination may help elucidating the spectrum of potential reservoirs. Methodology/Principal findings In a first step, high-throughput phenotype microarray Biolog was used to profile carbon substrates in one M. marinum and five M. ulcerans strains. A total of 131/190 (69%) carbon substrates were metabolized by at least one M. ulcerans strain, including 28/190 (15%) carbon substrates metabolized by all five M. ulcerans strains of which 21 substrates were also metabolized by M. marinum. In a second step, 131 carbon substrates were investigated, through a bibliographical search, for their known environmental sources including plants, fruits and vegetables, bacteria, algae, fungi, nematodes, mollusks, mammals, insects and the inanimate environment. This analysis yielded significant association of M. ulcerans with bacteria (p = 0.000), fungi (p = 0.001), algae (p = 0.003) and mollusks (p = 0.007). In a third step, the Medline database was cross-searched for bacteria, fungi, mollusks and algae as potential sources of carbon substrates metabolized by all tested M. ulcerans; it indicated that 57% of M. ulcerans substrates were associated with bacteria, 18% with alga, 11% with mollusks and 7% with fungi. Conclusions This first report of high-throughput carbon substrate utilization by M. ulcerans would help designing media to isolate and grow this pathogen. Furthermore, the presented data suggest that potential M. ulcerans environmental reservoirs might be related to micro-habitats where bacteria, fungi, algae and mollusks are abundant. This should be followed by targeted investigations in Buruli ulcer endemic regions. PMID:28095422

  9. Suitable environmental ranges for potential coral reef habitats in the tropical ocean.

    PubMed

    Guan, Yi; Hohn, Sönke; Merico, Agostino

    2015-01-01

    Coral reefs are found within a limited range of environmental conditions or tolerance limits. Estimating these limits is a critical prerequisite for understanding the impacts of climate change on the biogeography of coral reefs. Here we used the diagnostic model ReefHab to determine the current environmental tolerance limits for coral reefs and the global distribution of potential coral reef habitats as a function of six factors: temperature, salinity, nitrate, phosphate, aragonite saturation state, and light. To determine these tolerance limits, we extracted maximum and minimum values of all environmental variables in corresponding locations where coral reefs are present. We found that the global, annually averaged tolerance limits for coral reefs are 21.7-29.6 °C for temperature, 28.7-40.4 psu for salinity, 4.51 μmol L-1 for nitrate, 0.63 μmol L-1 for phosphate, and 2.82 for aragonite saturation state. The averaged minimum light intensity in coral reefs is 450 μmol photons m-2 s-1. The global area of potential reef habitats calculated by the model is 330.5 × 103 km2. Compared with previous studies, the tolerance limits for temperature, salinity, and nutrients have not changed much, whereas the minimum value of aragonite saturation in coral reef waters has decreased from 3.28 to 2.82. The potential reef habitat area calculated with ReefHab is about 121×103 km2 larger than the area estimated from the charted reefs, suggesting that the growth potential of coral reefs is higher than currently observed.

  10. Exploratory study of some potential environmental impacts of CO2 sequestration in unmineable coal seams

    SciTech Connect

    Hedges, S.W.; Soong, Y.; Jones, R.J.; Harrison, D.K.; Irdi, G.A.; Frommell, E.A.; Dilmore, R.M.; White, C.M.

    2007-01-01

    An initial investigation into the potential environmental impacts of CO2 sequestration in unmineable coal seams has been conducted, focusing on changes in the produced water during enhanced coalbed methane (ECBM) production, using a CO2 injection process (CO2-ECBM). A high volatile bituminous coal, Pittsburgh No. 8, was reacted with synthetic produced water and gaseous carbon dioxide at 40°C and 50 bar to evaluate the potential for mobilisation of toxic metals during CO2-ECBM/sequestration. Microscopic and X-ray diffraction analysis of the post-reaction coal samples clearly show evidence of chemical reaction and chemical analysis of the synthetic produced water shows substantial changes in composition. These results suggest that changes to the produced water chemistry and the potential for mobilising toxic trace elements from coal beds are important factors to be considered when evaluating deep, unmineable coal seams for CO2 sequestration.

  11. 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

  12. Polymerase chain reaction-based screening method applicable universally to environmental haloarchaea and halobacteria for identifying polyhydroxyalkanoate producers among them.

    PubMed

    Mahansaria, Riddhi; Choudhury, Jayanta Debabrata; Mukherjee, Joydeep

    2015-09-01

    The existing techniques for detection of polyhydroxyalkanoates (PHA) in halophilic archaea/bacteria are either imprecise or require prior PHA production before screening. The proposed method involves amplification of the approximately 280-300 bp conserved region of Class III PHA synthase (phaC) gene of halophiles using the primers codehopCF and codehopCR (Han et al. Appl Environ Microb 76:7811-7819, 2010). In this study, the best reaction condition was ascertained after repeated trials. This developed method was tested on nine haloarchaeal and halobacterial type strains and 28 environmental halophilic archaea and bacteria isolated from the salt pans of the east and west coasts of India. 29 strains were found to be phaC-positive, while eight were found to be phaC-negative although they appeared PHA positive through conventional Nile Red staining. 16S rRNA-based phylogenetic analysis identified 9 haloarchaeal and 9 halobacterial species as novel PHA producers. Multiple sequence alignment of the phaC gene-derived amino acid sequences showed that only 7 amino acid residues were conserved within all four classes of phaC enzymes, whereas 61 amino acids were identical among the phaC enzyme specific to the haloarchaeal and halobacterial strains presently investigated. All phaC-positive strains produced PHA in standard nutrient deficient medium, whereas the phaC-negative strains did not accumulate any PHA as detected by gas chromatography and nuclear magnetic resonance analyses, thus proving the precision of the developed method and elimination of false positives seen with the traditional Nile Red staining procedure.

  13. Identifying coherent patterns of environmental change between multiple, multivariate records: an application to four 1000-year diatom records from Victoria, Australia

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tyler, Jonathan J.; Mills, Keely; Barr, Cameron; Sniderman, J. M. Kale; Gell, Peter A.; Karoly, David J.

    2015-07-01

    Empirical orthogonal functions (EOFs) of indirect archives of environmental change are increasingly used to identify coherent trends between palaeoclimate records, to separate externally forced patterns from locally driven idiosyncrasies. Lake sediments are particularly suited to such syntheses: they are abundant in most landscapes and record a wide array of information, yet local complexities often conceal or confuse the climate signal recorded at individual sites. Lake sediment parameters usually exhibit non-linear, multivariate and indirect responses to climate, therefore identifying coherent patterns between two or more lake records presents a complex challenge. Ideally, the selection of representative variables should be non-subjective and inclusive of as many different variables as possible, allowing for unexpected correlations between sites. In order to meet such demands, we propose a two-tier ordination procedure whereby site-specific (local) ordinations, obtained using Detrended Correspondence Analysis (DCA), are nested within a second, regional EOF. Using the local DCAs as representative variables allows the retention of a larger fraction of variance from each site, removes any subjectivity from variable selection and retains the potential for observing multiple, coherent signals from within and between each dataset. We explore this potential using four decadally resolved diatom records from volcanic lakes in Western Victoria, Australia. The records span the 1000 years prior to European settlement in CE 1803. Our analyses reveal at least two coherent patterns of ecological change that are manifest in each of the four datasets, patterns which may have been overlooked by a single-variable, empirical orthogonal function approach. This intra-site coherency provides a valuable step towards understanding multi-decadal hydroclimate variability in southeastern Australia.

  14. Appraisal of potential environmental risks associated with human antibiotic consumption in Turkey.

    PubMed

    Turkdogan, F Ilter; Yetilmezsoy, Kaan

    2009-07-15

    A comprehensive analysis of Turkish antibiotic data was conducted to evaluate potential environmental risks associated with antibiotic consumption in Turkey for year 2007. Antibiotics were defined for systemic use or group J01 of the WHO Anatomical Therapeutic Chemical (ATC) classification system. Total emissions and prescriptions for each ATC group were classified separately into 17 different J01 categories and three forms of medication (capsule/tablets, injectables and suspensions). Capsules and tablets were found as the most emitted form of medication in year 2007, with a total emission rate of about 585.5 tons/year (76%). Total antibiotic emission rates including all forms of medications were determined to be about 664.2 tons/year (86%) and 110.1 tons/year (14%) for adult and pediatric patients, respectively. An environmental risk assessment of 8 human antibiotics was conducted according to the EU draft guidance (CEC/III/5504/94, draft 6, version 4) and the risk was indicated by the ratio of predicted environmental concentration (PEC) to predicted no effect concentration (PNEC) for the aquatic environment. Available acute and chronic toxicity data were collected from the open peer-reviewed literature to derive PNEC. Risk quotients (PEC/PNEC) were then calculated for 8 pharmaceutical substances. PEC/PNEC ratio exceeded 1.0 for beta-lactams (cephalosporins and penicillins), fluoroquinolones, macrolides and aminoglycosides. The findings of this study concluded that the release of these compounds from wastewater treatment plants may potentially be of an important environmental concern based on today's use of antibiotics in Turkey.

  15. Environmental Enteric Dysfunction Is Associated With Poor Linear Growth and Can Be Identified by Host Fecal mRNAs

    PubMed Central

    Ordiz, Maria Isabel; Shaikh, Nurmohammad; Trehan, Indi; Maleta, Ken; Stauber, Jennifer; Shulman, Robert; Devaraj, Sridevi; Tarr, Phillip I.; Manary, Mark J.

    2016-01-01

    ABSTRACT Objective: Environmental enteric dysfunction (EED) can be assessed by the lactulose:mannitol (L:M) test. Our objective was to determine if selected host fecal transcripts were correlated with EED, and whether transcripts and clinical characteristics could be used to predict EED in rural African children. Methods: Demographic and sanitation characteristics, along with L:M testing and host fecal transcript analyses from 798 asymptomatic Malawian children aged 12 to 61 months were compared with linear growth over the subsequent 3 months. Fecal host mRNA analysis included quantification of expression of 18 transcripts associated with L:M. Permeability was categorized as normal (L:M ≤ 0.15), moderate (0.15potentially contaminated water source, and a recent history of diarrhea were associated with severe EED. A random forest model using CD53, HLA-DRA, MUC12, and TNF was 84% sensitive for severe EED and 83% sensitive for no EED. Conclusions: Selected host fecal transcripts can be used in a random forest model as a noninvasive biomarker for categories of EED in rural African children. PMID:27347722

  16. Maternal Expressed Emotion Predicts Children's Antisocial Behavior Problems: Using Monozygotic-Twin Differences to Identify Environmental Effects on Behavioral Development

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Caspi, Avshalom; Moffitt, Terrie E.; Morgan, Julia; Rutter,Michael; Taylor,Alan; Arseneault, Louise; Tully, Lucy; Jacobs, Catherine; Kim-Cohen, Julia

    2004-01-01

    If maternal expressed emotion is an environmental risk factor for children's antisocial behavior problems, it should account for behavioral differences between siblings growing up in the same family even after genetic influences on children's behavior problems are taken into account. This hypothesis was tested in the Environmental Risk…

  17. Potential bud bank responses to apical meristem damage and environmental variables: matching or complementing axillary meristems?

    PubMed

    Klimešová, Jitka; Malíková, Lenka; Rosenthal, Jonathan; Šmilauer, Petr

    2014-01-01

    Soil nutrients, dormant axillary meristem availability, and competition can influence plant tolerance to damage. However, the role of potential bud banks (adventitious meristems initiated only after injury) is not known. Examining Central European field populations of 22 species of short-lived monocarpic herbs exposed to various sources of damage, we hypothesized that: (1) with increasing injury severity, the number of axillary branches would decrease, due to axillary meristem limitation, whereas the number of adventitious shoots (typically induced by severe injury) would increase; (2) favorable environmental conditions would allow intact plants to branch more, resulting in stronger axillary meristem limitation than in unfavorable conditions; and (3) consequently, adventitious sprouting would be better enabled in favorable than unfavorable conditions. We found strong support for the first hypothesis, only limited support for the second, and none for the third. Our results imply that whereas soil nutrients and competition marginally influence plant tolerance to damage, potential bud banks enable plants to overcome meristem limitation from severe damage, and therefore better tolerate it. All the significant effects were found in intraspecific comparisons, whereas interspecific differences were not found. Monocarpic plants with potential bud banks therefore represent a distinct strategy occupying a narrow environmental niche. The disturbance regime typical for this niche remains to be examined, as do the costs associated with the banks of adventitious and axillary reserve meristems.

  18. Experimental investigation to evaluate the potential environmental hazards of photovoltaic panels.

    PubMed

    Tammaro, Marco; Salluzzo, Antonio; Rimauro, Juri; Schiavo, Simona; Manzo, Sonia

    2016-04-05

    Recently the potential environmental hazard of photovoltaic modules together with their management as waste has attracted the attention of scientists. Particular concern is aroused by the several metals contained in photovoltaic panels whose potential release in the environment were scarcely investigated. Here, for the first time, the potential environmental hazard of panels produced in the last 30 years was investigated through the assessment of up to 18 releasable metals. Besides, the corresponding ecotoxicological effects were also evaluated. Experimental data were compared with the current European and Italian law limits for drinking water, discharge on soil and landfill inert disposal in order to understand the actual pollution load. Results showed that less than 3% of the samples respected all law limits and around 21% was not ecotoxic. By considering the technological evolutions in manufacturing, we have shown that during the years crystalline silicon panels have lower tendency to release hazardous metals with respect to thin film panels. In addition, a prediction of the amounts of lead, chromium, cadmium and nickel releasable from next photovoltaic waste was performed. The prevision up to 2050 showed high amounts of lead (30t) and cadmium (2.9t) releasable from crystalline and thin film panels respectively.

  19. 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

  20. Potential environmental impacts of light-emitting diodes (LEDs): metallic resources, toxicity, and hazardous waste classification.

    PubMed

    Lim, Seong-Rin; Kang, Daniel; Ogunseitan, Oladele A; Schoenung, Julie M

    2011-01-01

    Light-emitting diodes (LEDs) are advertised as environmentally friendly because they are energy efficient and mercury-free. This study aimed to determine if LEDs engender other forms of environmental and human health impacts, and to characterize variation across different LEDs based on color and intensity. The objectives are as follows: (i) to use standardized leachability tests to examine whether LEDs are to be categorized as hazardous waste under existing United States federal and California state regulations; and (ii) to use material life cycle impact and hazard assessment methods to evaluate resource depletion and toxicity potentials of LEDs based on their metallic constituents. According to federal standards, LEDs are not hazardous except for low-intensity red LEDs, which leached Pb at levels exceeding regulatory limits (186 mg/L; regulatory limit: 5). However, according to California regulations, excessive levels of copper (up to 3892 mg/kg; limit: 2500), Pb (up to 8103 mg/kg; limit: 1000), nickel (up to 4797 mg/kg; limit: 2000), or silver (up to 721 mg/kg; limit: 500) render all except low-intensity yellow LEDs hazardous. The environmental burden associated with resource depletion potentials derives primarily from gold and silver, whereas the burden from toxicity potentials is associated primarily with arsenic, copper, nickel, lead, iron, and silver. Establishing benchmark levels of these substances can help manufacturers implement design for environment through informed materials substitution, can motivate recyclers and waste management teams to recognize resource value and occupational hazards, and can inform policymakers who establish waste management policies for LEDs.

  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. Community-level physiological profiling analyses show potential to identify the copiotrophic bacteria present in soil environments

    PubMed Central

    Lladó, Salvador; Baldrian, Petr

    2017-01-01

    Community-level physiological profiling (CLPP) analyses from very diverse environments are frequently used with the aim of characterizing the metabolic versatility of whole environmental bacterial communities. While the limitations of the methodology for the characterization of whole communities are well known, we propose that CLPP combined with high-throughput sequencing and qPCR can be utilized to identify the copiotrophic, fast-growing fraction of the bacterial community of soil environments, where oligotrophic taxa are usually dominant. In the present work we have used this approach to analyze samples of litter and soil from a coniferous forest in the Czech Republic using BIOLOG GN2 plates. Monosaccharides and amino acids were utilized significantly faster than other C substrates, such as organic acids, in both litter and soil samples. Bacterial biodiversity in CLPP wells was significantly lower than in the original community, independently of the carbon source. Bacterial communities became highly enriched in taxa that typically showed low abundance in the original soil, belonging mostly to the Gammaproteobacteria and the genus Pseudomonas, indicating that the copiotrophic strains, favoured by the high nutrient content, are rare in forest litter and soil. In contrast, taxa abundant in the original samples were rarely found to grow at sufficient rates under the CLPP conditions. Our results show that CLPP is useful to detect copiotrophic bacteria from the soil environments and that bacterial growth is substrate specific. PMID:28170446

  3. A literature review of connectedness to nature and its potential for environmental management.

    PubMed

    Restall, Brian; Conrad, Elisabeth

    2015-08-15

    Understanding how people's relationships with nature form, how they influence personal values and attitudes, and what behavioural implications they may have could provide more insight into how connectedness to nature (CNT) can effectively contribute to environmental management goals. This paper undertakes a review of literature published over the past decade (2002-2011) on SCOPUS; and describes the current state of knowledge regarding CNT, assesses any efforts towards the spatial mapping of CNT for environmental management, and identifies measures of CNT defined in the broader literature. This review suggests that there is quite some overlap in the literature on CNT concepts, and that more effort needs to be made towards multi-disciplinary research which explores how CNT can be useful to environmental planning and conservation research on the field. It also further corroborates the need and relevance of applying more social and affective strategies to promote conservation behaviour. The main progress in CNT theory seems to have been made in the development of measurement tools, and it is clear that there is a strong convergent validity amongst the different measures due to their similarity, and functional associations. Further efforts towards the exploration of multi-dimensional measures is recommended since they consistently stand out as showing better results. The geographic visualisation of CNT constructs is another area of research that deserves attention since it can provide a unique point of view towards guiding participatory protected area planning and management.

  4. 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).

  5. 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

  6. 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

  7. 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.

  8. Integrated analysis of genome-wide DNA methylation and gene expression profiles identifies potential novel biomarkers of rectal cancer

    PubMed Central

    Zhang, Jinning; Zhou, Yuhui; Dang, Shuwei; Chen, Hongsheng; Wu, Qiong; Liu, Ming

    2016-01-01

    DNA methylation was regarded as the promising biomarker for rectal cancer diagnosis. However, the optimal methylation biomarkers with ideal diagnostic performance for rectal cancer are still limited. To identify new molecular markers for rectal cancer, we mapped DNA methylation and transcriptomic profiles in the six rectal cancer and paired normal samples. Further analysis revealed the hypermethylated probes in cancer prone to be located in gene promoter. Meanwhile, transcriptome analysis presented 773 low-expressed and 1,161 over-expressed genes in rectal cancer. Correction analysis identified a panel of 36 genes with an inverse correlation between methylation and gene expression levels, including 10 known colorectal cancer related genes. From the other 26 novel marker genes, GFRA1 and GSTM2 were selected for further analysis on the basis of their biological functions. Further experiment analysis confirmed their methylation and expression status in a larger number (44) of rectal cancer samples, and ROC curves showed higher AUC than SEPT9, which has been used as a biomarker in rectal cancer. Our data suggests that aberrant DNA methylation of contiguous CpG sites in methylation array may be potential diagnostic markers of rectal cancer. PMID:27566576

  9. In Silico Repositioning-Chemogenomics Strategy Identifies New Drugs with Potential Activity against Multiple Life Stages of Schistosoma mansoni

    PubMed Central

    Neves, Bruno J.; Braga, Rodolpho C.; Bezerra, José C. B.; Cravo, Pedro V. L.; Andrade, Carolina H.

    2015-01-01

    Morbidity and mortality caused by schistosomiasis are serious public health problems in developing countries. Because praziquantel is the only drug in therapeutic use, the risk of drug resistance is a concern. In the search for new schistosomicidal drugs, we performed a target-based chemogenomics screen of a dataset of 2,114 proteins to identify drugs that are approved for clinical use in humans that may be active against multiple life stages of Schistosoma mansoni. Each of these proteins was treated as a potential drug target, and its amino acid sequence was used to interrogate three databases: Therapeutic Target Database (TTD), DrugBank and STITCH. Predicted drug-target interactions were refined using a combination of approaches, including pairwise alignment, conservation state of functional regions and chemical space analysis. To validate our strategy, several drugs previously shown to be active against Schistosoma species were correctly predicted, such as clonazepam, auranofin, nifedipine, and artesunate. We were also able to identify 115 drugs that have not yet been experimentally tested against schistosomes and that require further assessment. Some examples are aprindine, gentamicin, clotrimazole, tetrabenazine, griseofulvin, and cinnarizine. In conclusion, we have developed a systematic and focused computer-aided approach to propose approved drugs that may warrant testing and/or serve as lead compounds for the design of new drugs against schistosomes. PMID:25569258

  10. In silico repositioning-chemogenomics strategy identifies new drugs with potential activity against multiple life stages of Schistosoma mansoni.

    PubMed

    Neves, Bruno J; Braga, Rodolpho C; Bezerra, José C B; Cravo, Pedro V L; Andrade, Carolina H

    2015-01-01

    Morbidity and mortality caused by schistosomiasis are serious public health problems in developing countries. Because praziquantel is the only drug in therapeutic use, the risk of drug resistance is a concern. In the search for new schistosomicidal drugs, we performed a target-based chemogenomics screen of a dataset of 2,114 proteins to identify drugs that are approved for clinical use in humans that may be active against multiple life stages of Schistosoma mansoni. Each of these proteins was treated as a potential drug target, and its amino acid sequence was used to interrogate three databases: Therapeutic Target Database (TTD), DrugBank and STITCH. Predicted drug-target interactions were refined using a combination of approaches, including pairwise alignment, conservation state of functional regions and chemical space analysis. To validate our strategy, several drugs previously shown to be active against Schistosoma species were correctly predicted, such as clonazepam, auranofin, nifedipine, and artesunate. We were also able to identify 115 drugs that have not yet been experimentally tested against schistosomes and that require further assessment. Some examples are aprindine, gentamicin, clotrimazole, tetrabenazine, griseofulvin, and cinnarizine. In conclusion, we have developed a systematic and focused computer-aided approach to propose approved drugs that may warrant testing and/or serve as lead compounds for the design of new drugs against schistosomes.

  11. In Silico Approach To Identify Potential Thyroid Hormone Disruptors among Currently Known Dust Contaminants and Their Metabolites.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Jin; Kamstra, Jorke H; Ghorbanzadeh, Mehdi; Weiss, Jana M; Hamers, Timo; Andersson, Patrik L

    2015-08-18

    Thyroid hormone disrupting chemicals (THDCs) interfere with the thyroid hormone system and may induce multiple severe physiological disorders. Indoor dust ingestion is a major route of THDCs exposure in humans, and one of the molecular targets of these chemicals is the hormone transporter transthyretin (TTR). To virtually screen indoor dust contaminants and their metabolites for THDCs targeting TTR, we developed a quantitative structure-activity relationship (QSAR) classification model. The QSAR model was applied to an in-house database including 485 organic dust contaminants reported from literature data and their 433 in silico derived metabolites. The model predicted 37 (7.6%) dust contaminants and 230 (53.1%) metabolites as potential TTR binders. Four new THDCs were identified after testing 23 selected parent dust contaminants in a radio-ligand TTR binding assay; 2,2',4,4'-tetrahydroxybenzophenone, perfluoroheptanesulfonic acid, 3,5,6-trichloro-2-pyridinol, and 2,4,5-trichlorophenoxyacetic acid. These chemicals competitively bind to TTR with 50% inhibition (IC50) values at or below 10 μM. Molecular docking studies suggested that these THDCs interacted similarly with TTR via the residue Ser117A, but their binding poses were dissimilar to the endogenous ligand T4. This study identified new THDCs using an in silico approach in combination with bioassay testing and highlighted the importance of metabolic activation for TTR binding.

  12. Cross-comparison of the genome sequences from human, chimpanzee, Neanderthal and a Denisovan hominin identifies novel potentially compensated mutations.

    PubMed

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

    2011-07-01

    The recent publication of the draft genome sequences of the Neanderthal and a ∼50,000-year-old archaic hominin from Denisova Cave in southern Siberia has ushered in a new age in molecular archaeology. We previously cross-compared the human, chimpanzee and Neanderthal genome sequences with respect to a set of disease-causing/disease-associated missense and regulatory mutations (Human Gene Mutation Database) and succeeded in identifying genetic variants which, although apparently pathogenic in humans, may represent a 'compensated' wild-type state in at least one of the other two species. Here, in an attempt to identify further 'potentially compensated mutations' (PCMs) of interest, we have compared our dataset of disease-causing/disease-associated mutations with their corresponding nucleotide positions in the Denisovan hominin, Neanderthal and chimpanzee genomes. Of the 15 human putatively disease-causing mutations that were found to be compensated in chimpanzee, Denisovan or Neanderthal, only a solitary F5 variant (Val1736Met) was specific to the Denisovan. In humans, this missense mutation is associated with activated protein C resistance and an increased risk of thromboembolism and recurrent miscarriage. It is unclear at this juncture whether this variant was indeed a PCM in the Denisovan or whether it could instead have been associated with disease in this ancient hominin.

  13. Achieving Land, Energy, and Environmental Compatibility: Utility-Scale Solar Energy Potential and Land-Use in California

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hoffacker, M. K.; Hernandez, R. R.; Field, C. B.

    2013-12-01

    Solar energy is an archetype renewable energy technology with great potential to reduce greenhouse gas emissions when substituted for carbon-intensive energy. Utility-scale solar energy (USSE; i.e., > 1 MW) necessitates large quantities of space making the efficient use of land for USSE development critical to realizing its full potential. However, studies elucidating the interaction between land-use and utility-scale solar energy (USSE) are limited. In this study, we assessed 1) the theoretical and technical potential of terrestrial-based USSE systems, and 2) land-use and land-cover change impacts from actual USSE installations (> 20 MW; planned, under construction, operating), using California as a case study due to its early adoption of renewable energy systems, unique constraints on land availability, immense energy demand, and vast natural resources. We used topo-climatic (e.g., slope, irradiance), infrastructural (e.g., proximity to transmission lines), and ecological constraints (e.g., threatened and endangered species) to determine highly favorable, favorable, and unfavorable locations for USSE and to assess its technical potential. We found that the theoretical potential of photovoltaic (PV) and concentrating solar power (CSP) in California is 26,097 and 29,422 kWh/m2/day, respectively. We identified over 150 planned, under construction, and operating USSE installations in California, ranging in size from 20 to 1,000 MW. Currently, 29% are located on shrub- and scrublands, 23% on cultivated crop land, 13% on pasture/hay areas, 11% on grassland/herbaceous and developed open space, and 7% in the built environment. Understanding current land-use decisions of USSE systems and assessing its future potential can be instructive for achieving land, energy, and environmental compatibility, especially for other global regions that share similar resource demands and limitations.

  14. Vitamin-D Deficiency As a Potential Environmental Risk Factor in Multiple Sclerosis, Schizophrenia, and Autism

    PubMed Central

    Kočovská, Eva; Gaughran, Fiona; Krivoy, Amir; Meier, Ute-Christiane

    2017-01-01

    In this short review, we want to summarize the current findings on the role of vitamin-D in multiple sclerosis (MS), schizophrenia, and autism. Many studies have highlighted hypovitaminosis-D as a potential environmental risk factor for a variety of conditions such as MS, asthma, cardiovascular disease, and, more recently, psychiatric diseases. However, whether hypovitaminosis-D is a potential causative factor for the development or activity in these conditions or whether hypovitaminosis-D may be due to increased vitamin-D consumption by an activated immune system (reverse causation) is the focus of intense research. Here, we will discuss current evidence exploring the role of vitamin-D in MS, schizophrenia, and autism and its impact on adaptive and innate immunity, antimicrobial defense, the microbiome, neuroinflammation, behavior, and neurogenesis. More work is needed to gain insight into its role in the underlying pathophysiology of these conditions as it may offer attractive means of intervention and prevention.

  15. Environmental assessment of the potential effects of aquifer thermal energy storage systems on microorganisms in groundwater

    SciTech Connect

    Hicks, R.J.; Stewart, D.L.

    1988-03-01

    The primary objective of this study was to evaluate the potential environmental effects (both adverse and beneficials) of aquifer thermal energy storage (ATES) technology pertaining to microbial communities indigenous to subsurface environments (i.e., aquifers) and the propagation, movement, and potential release of pathogenic microorganisms (specifically, Legionella) within ATES systems. Seasonal storage of thermal energy in aquifers shows great promise to reduce peak demand; reduce electric utility load problems; contribute to establishing favorable economics for district heating and cooling systems; and reduce pollution from extraction, refining, and combustion of fossil fuels. However, concerns that the widespread implementation of this technology may have adverse effects on biological systems indigeneous to aquifers, as well as help to propagate and release pathogenic organisms that enter thee environments need to be resolved. 101 refs., 2 tabs.

  16. Hydrologic modeling to screen potential environmental management methods for malaria vector control in Niger

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gianotti, Rebecca L.; Bomblies, Arne; Eltahir, Elfatih A. B.

    2009-08-01

    This paper describes the first use of Hydrology-Entomology and Malaria Transmission Simulator (HYDREMATS), a physically based distributed hydrology model, to investigate environmental management methods for malaria vector control in the Sahelian village of Banizoumbou, Niger. The investigation showed that leveling of topographic depressions where temporary breeding habitats form during the rainy season, by altering pool basin microtopography, could reduce the pool persistence time to less than the time needed for establishment of mosquito breeding, approximately 7 days. Undertaking soil surface plowing can also reduce pool persistence time by increasing the infiltration rate through an existing pool basin. Reduction of the pool persistence time to less than the rainfall interstorm period increases the frequency of pool drying events, removing habitat for subadult mosquitoes. Both management approaches could potentially be considered within a given context. This investigation demonstrates that management methods that modify the hydrologic environment have significant potential to contribute to malaria vector control in water-limited, Sahelian Africa.

  17. Experimental antibiotic treatment identifies potential pathogens of white band disease in the endangered Caribbean coral Acropora cervicornis.

    PubMed

    Sweet, M J; Croquer, A; Bythell, J C

    2014-08-07

    of the other potential pathogens identified in this study.

  18. Genetic analysis of fin development in zebrafish identifies furin and hemicentin1 as potential novel fraser syndrome disease genes.

    PubMed

    Carney, Thomas J; Feitosa, Natália Martins; Sonntag, Carmen; Slanchev, Krasimir; Kluger, Johannes; Kiyozumi, Daiji; Gebauer, Jan M; Coffin Talbot, Jared; Kimmel, Charles B; Sekiguchi, Kiyotoshi; Wagener, Raimund; Schwarz, Heinz; Ingham, Phillip W; Hammerschmidt, Matthias

    2010-04-15

    Using forward genetics, we have identified the genes mutated in two classes of zebrafish fin mutants. The mutants of the first class are characterized by defects in embryonic fin morphogenesis, which are due to mutations in a Laminin subunit or an Integrin alpha receptor, respectively. The mutants of the second class display characteristic blistering underneath the basement membrane of the fin epidermis. Three of them are due to mutations in zebrafish orthologues of FRAS1, FREM1, or FREM2, large basement membrane protein encoding genes that are mutated in mouse bleb mutants and in human patients suffering from Fraser Syndrome, a rare congenital condition characterized by syndactyly and cryptophthalmos. Fin blistering in a fourth group of zebrafish mutants is caused by mutations in Hemicentin1 (Hmcn1), another large extracellular matrix protein the function of which in vertebrates was hitherto unknown. Our mutant and dose-dependent interaction data suggest a potential involvement of Hmcn1 in Fraser complex-dependent basement membrane anchorage. Furthermore, we present biochemical and genetic data suggesting a role for the proprotein convertase FurinA in zebrafish fin development and cell surface shedding of Fras1 and Frem2, thereby allowing proper localization of the proteins within the basement membrane of forming fins. Finally, we identify the extracellular matrix protein Fibrillin2 as an indispensable interaction partner of Hmcn1. Thus we have defined a series of zebrafish mutants modelling Fraser Syndrome and have identified several implicated novel genes that might help to further elucidate the mechanisms of basement membrane anchorage and of the disease's aetiology. In addition, the novel genes might prove helpful to unravel the molecular nature of thus far unresolved cases of the human disease.

  19. ION COMPOSITION ELUCIDATION (ICE): A HIGH RESOLUTION MASS SPECTROMETRIC TOOL FOR IDENTIFYING ORGANIC COMPOUNDS IN COMPLEX EXTRACTS OF ENVIRONMENTAL SAMPLES

    EPA Science Inventory


    Unidentified Organic Compounds. For target analytes, standards are purchased, extraction and clean-up procedures are optimized, and mass spectra and retention times for the chromatographic separation are obtained for comparison to the target compounds in environmental sample ...

  20. Integrating Demographic, Clinical,and Environmental Exposure Information to Identify Genomic Biomarkers Associated With Subtypes of Childhood Asthma

    EPA Science Inventory

    Childhood asthma is a multifactorial disease with a disturbingly high incidence in urbanized areas. The pathogenesis of asthma is poorly understood due to the complex relationship between genetic susceptibility and modulating environmental factors. The Mechanistic Indicators of C...

  1. A systems biology approach to identify intelligence quotient score-related genomic regions, and pathways relevant to potential therapeutic treatments

    PubMed Central

    Zhao, Min; Kong, Lei; Qu, Hong

    2014-01-01

    Although the intelligence quotient (IQ) is the most popular intelligence test in the world, little is known about the underlying biological mechanisms that lead to the differences in human. To improve our understanding of cognitive processes and identify potential biomarkers, we conducted a comprehensive investigation of 158 IQ-related genes selected from the literature. A genomic distribution analysis demonstrated that IQ-related genes were enriched in seven regions of chromosome 7 and the X chromosome. In addition, these genes were enriched in target lists of seven transcription factors and sixteen microRNAs. Using a network-based approach, we further reconstructed an IQ-related pathway from known human pathway interaction data. Based on this reconstructed pathway, we incorporated enriched drugs and described the importance of dopamine and norepinephrine systems in IQ-related biological process. These findings not only reveal several testable genes and processes related to IQ scores, but also have potential therapeutic implications for IQ-related mental disorders. PMID:24566931

  2. A Target-Based Whole Cell Screen Approach To Identify Potential Inhibitors of Mycobacterium tuberculosis Signal Peptidase

    PubMed Central

    2016-01-01

    The general secretion (Sec) pathway is a conserved essential pathway in bacteria and is the primary route of protein export across the cytoplasmic membrane. During protein export, the signal peptidase LepB catalyzes the cleavage of the signal peptide and subsequent release of mature proteins into the extracellular space. We developed a target-based whole cell assay to screen for potential inhibitors of LepB, the sole signal peptidase in Mycobacterium tuberculosis, using a strain engineered to underexpress LepB (LepB-UE). We screened 72,000 compounds against both the Lep-UE and wild-type (wt) strains. We identified the phenylhydrazone (PHY) series as having higher activity against the LepB-UE strain. We conducted a limited structure–activity relationship determination around a representative PHY compound with differential activity (MICs of 3.0 μM against the LepB-UE strain and 18 μM against the wt); several analogues were less potent against the LepB overexpressing strain. A number of chemical modifications around the hydrazone moiety resulted in improved potency. Inhibition of LepB activity was observed for a number of compounds in a biochemical assay using cell membrane fraction derived from M. tuberculosis. Compounds did not increase cell permeability, dissipate membrane potential, or inhibit an unrelated mycobacterial enzyme, suggesting a specific mode of action related to the LepB secretory mechanism. PMID:27642770

  3. Genomic analysis identified a potential novel molecular mechanism for high-altitude adaptation in sheep at the Himalayas

    PubMed Central

    Gorkhali, Neena Amatya; Dong, Kunzhe; Yang, Min; Song, Shen; Kader, Adiljian; Shrestha, Bhola Shankar; He, Xiaohong; Zhao, Qianjun; Pu, Yabin; Li, Xiangchen; Kijas, James; Guan, Weijun; Han, Jianlin; Jiang, Lin; Ma, Yuehui

    2016-01-01

    Sheep has successfully adapted to the extreme high-altitude Himalayan region. To identify genes underlying such adaptation, we genotyped genome-wide single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) of four major sheep breeds living at different altitudes in Nepal and downloaded SNP array data from additional Asian and Middle East breeds. Using a di value-based genomic comparison between four high-altitude and eight lowland Asian breeds, we discovered the most differentiated variants at the locus of FGF-7 (Keratinocyte growth factor-7), which was previously reported as a good protective candidate for pulmonary injuries. We further found a SNP upstream of FGF-7 that appears to contribute to the divergence signature. First, the SNP occurred at an extremely conserved site. Second, the SNP showed an increasing allele frequency with the elevated altitude in Nepalese sheep. Third, the electrophoretic mobility shift assays (EMSA) analysis using human lung cancer cells revealed the allele-specific DNA-protein interactions. We thus hypothesized that FGF-7 gene potentially enhances lung function by regulating its expression level in high-altitude sheep through altering its binding of specific transcription factors. Especially, FGF-7 gene was not implicated in previous studies of other high-altitude species, suggesting a potential novel adaptive mechanism to high altitude in sheep at the Himalayas. PMID:27444145

  4. An Investigation of Circumbinary Planet Orbital Stability and Habitability to Identify Potential Planetary Systems with Several Habitable Planets

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mason, Paul A.; Zuluaga, Jorge; Cuartas, Pablo A.

    2015-08-01

    The census of planets orbiting the center of mass of binary stars is rapidly growing. The question of stability for circumbinary planets has been the focus of much recent research. We review this work and present results of new simulations, from which we find criteria for the long term stability of exoplanets orbiting binaries. We are especially concerned with the potential stability of planets in habitable zones surrounding binaries. For this purpose, we merge a long-term orbital stability study with an analysis of the rotational evolution of the stellar components. The stellar evolution and rotational study enables estimates of stellar activity, and the effects on the magnetospheres and atmospheres of planets over the course of history for a potentially habitable circumbinary planet. We find that the long-term orbital stability of circumbinary habitable zone depends sensitively on the initial orbit of the binary and on the masses of the stars. We find that stellar twins (binary mass ratio ~ 1) and binaries with circular orbits provide the most stable solutions. However, if the binary orbit evolves too rapidly, planets may be lost due to changes in resonance locations. A subset of binaries are identified possessing both stable orbital solutions for multiple planets in the habitable zone and reduced stellar aggression due to tidal torqueing of the stellar rotation.

  5. Potential environmental and human health impacts of rechargeable lithium batteries in electronic waste.

    PubMed

    Kang, Daniel Hsing Po; Chen, Mengjun; Ogunseitan, Oladele A

    2013-05-21

    Rechargeable lithium-ion (Li-ion) and lithium-polymer (Li-poly) batteries have recently become dominant in consumer electronic products because of advantages associated with energy density and product longevity. However, the small size of these batteries, the high rate of disposal of consumer products in which they are used, and the lack of uniform regulatory policy on their disposal means that lithium batteries may contribute substantially to environmental pollution and adverse human health impacts due to potentially toxic materials. In this research, we used standardized leaching tests, life-cycle impact assessment (LCIA), and hazard assessment models to evaluate hazardous waste classification, resource depletion potential, and toxicity potentials of lithium batteries used in cellphones. Our results demonstrate that according to U.S. federal regulations, defunct Li-ion batteries are classified hazardous due to their lead (Pb) content (average 6.29 mg/L; σ = 11.1; limit 5). However, according to California regulations, all lithium batteries tested are classified hazardous due to excessive levels of cobalt (average 163,544 mg/kg; σ = 62,897; limit 8000), copper (average 98,694 mg/kg; σ = 28,734; limit 2500), and nickel (average 9525 mg/kg; σ = 11,438; limit 2000). In some of the Li-ion batteries, the leached concentrations of chromium, lead, and thallium exceeded the California regulation limits. The environmental impact associated with resource depletion and human toxicity is mainly associated with cobalt, copper, nickel, thallium, and silver, whereas the ecotoxicity potential is primarily associated with cobalt, copper, nickel, thallium, and silver. However, the relative contribution of aluminum and lithium to human toxicity and ecotoxicity could not be estimated due to insufficient toxicity data in the models. These findings support the need for stronger government policy at the local, national, and international levels to encourage recovery, recycling, and

  6. Identifying Active Faults in Northeast North America Using Hypocenters and Multiscale Edge Wavelet Analyses of Potential Fields

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Carpenter, K.; Horowitz, F.; Ebinger, C. J.; Navarrete, L. C.; Diaz-Etchevehere, D.

    2015-12-01

    Multiscale edge Poisson wavelet analyses of potential field data ("worms") have a physical interpretation as the locations of lateral boundaries in a source distribution that exactly generates the observed field. The worm technique is therefore well-suited to analyses of crustal-scale stuctures that could be reactivated by tectonic stress or by fluid injection processes, providing new tools to analyze existing continental-scale data sets. Northeastern North America (US, Canada) hosts potentially damaging intraplate earthquakes, yet many of the Proterozoic structures are covered by thick sedimentary sequences or dense vegetation, and crustal structure is relatively poorly known.For the purpose of extending basement structure beneath the Appalachian basin and establishing a consistent regional basis for comparison, we use worms to identify steeply dipping structures in compiled gravity and magnetic anomaly data sets. We compare results to intraplate earthquake locations to assess seismic hazards. Clearly, not all locations of lateral boundaries are faults, and we do not expect all faults to have shown activity in the ~50 years of seismic records available. However, proximity statistics between hypocenters and worms are of interest since they assist in the identification and location of a subset of potentially active faults. We compare structures of lateral mass-density or magnetization contrast with locations of earthquake hypocenters cataloged from the ISC, the NEIC, and the ANF from the EarthScope Transportable Array. We develop a GIS based method for calculating hypocenter/worm proximity, and we will show statistics and maps from this method for the region at the meeting.

  7. Human Leptospirosis Infection in Fiji: An Eco-epidemiological Approach to Identifying Risk Factors and Environmental Drivers for Transmission

    PubMed Central

    Lau, Colleen L.; Watson, Conall H.; Lowry, John H.; David, Michael C.; Craig, Scott B.; Wynwood, Sarah J.; Kama, Mike; Nilles, Eric J.

    2016-01-01

    Leptospirosis is an important zoonotic disease in the Pacific Islands. In Fiji, two successive cyclones and severe flooding in 2012 resulted in outbreaks with 576 reported cases and 7% case-fatality. We conducted a cross-sectional seroprevalence study and used an eco-epidemiological approach to characterize risk factors and drivers for human leptospirosis infection in Fiji, and aimed to provide an evidence base for improving the effectiveness of public health mitigation and intervention strategies. Antibodies indicative of previous or recent infection were found in 19.4% of 2152 participants (81 communities on the 3 main islands). Questionnaires and geographic information systems data were used to assess variables related to demographics, individual behaviour, contact with animals, socioeconomics, living conditions, land use, and the natural environment. On multivariable logistic regression analysis, variables associated with the presence of Leptospira antibodies included male gender (OR 1.55), iTaukei ethnicity (OR 3.51), living in villages (OR 1.64), lack of treated water at home (OR 1.52), working outdoors (1.64), living in rural areas (OR 1.43), high poverty rate (OR 1.74), living <100m from a major river (OR 1.41), pigs in the community (OR 1.54), high cattle density in the district (OR 1.04 per head/sqkm), and high maximum rainfall in the wettest month (OR 1.003 per mm). Risk factors and drivers for human leptospirosis infection in Fiji are complex and multifactorial, with environmental factors playing crucial roles. With global climate change, severe weather events and flooding are expected to intensify in the South Pacific. Population growth could also lead to more intensive livestock farming; and urbanization in developing countries is often associated with urban and peri-urban slums where diseases of poverty proliferate. Climate change, flooding, population growth, urbanization, poverty and agricultural intensification are important drivers of zoonotic

  8. Human Leptospirosis Infection in Fiji: An Eco-epidemiological Approach to Identifying Risk Factors and Environmental Drivers for Transmission.

    PubMed

    Lau, Colleen L; Watson, Conall H; Lowry, John H; David, Michael C; Craig, Scott B; Wynwood, Sarah J; Kama, Mike; Nilles, Eric J

    2016-01-01

    Leptospirosis is an important zoonotic disease in the Pacific Islands. In Fiji, two successive cyclones and severe flooding in 2012 resulted in outbreaks with 576 reported cases and 7% case-fatality. We conducted a cross-sectional seroprevalence study and used an eco-epidemiological approach to characterize risk factors and drivers for human leptospirosis infection in Fiji, and aimed to provide an evidence base for improving the effectiveness of public health mitigation and intervention strategies. Antibodies indicative of previous or recent infection were found in 19.4% of 2152 participants (81 communities on the 3 main islands). Questionnaires and geographic information systems data were used to assess variables related to demographics, individual behaviour, contact with animals, socioeconomics, living conditions, land use, and the natural environment. On multivariable logistic regression analysis, variables associated with the presence of Leptospira antibodies included male gender (OR 1.55), iTaukei ethnicity (OR 3.51), living in villages (OR 1.64), lack of treated water at home (OR 1.52), working outdoors (1.64), living in rural areas (OR 1.43), high poverty rate (OR 1.74), living <100m from a major river (OR 1.41), pigs in the community (OR 1.54), high cattle density in the district (OR 1.04 per head/sqkm), and high maximum rainfall in the wettest month (OR 1.003 per mm). Risk factors and drivers for human leptospirosis infection in Fiji are complex and multifactorial, with environmental factors playing crucial roles. With global climate change, severe weather events and flooding are expected to intensify in the South Pacific. Population growth could also lead to more intensive livestock farming; and urbanization in developing countries is often associated with urban and peri-urban slums where diseases of poverty proliferate. Climate change, flooding, population growth, urbanization, poverty and agricultural intensification are important drivers of zoonotic

  9. Activation of vegetated parabolic dunes into mobile barchans under potential environmental change scenarios

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yan, Na; Baas, Andreas C. W.

    2016-04-01

    Parabolic dunes are a quintessential example of the co-evolution of soil, landform, and vegetation, and they are found around the world, on coasts, river valleys, lake shores, and margins of deserts and steppes. These areas are often sensitive to changes in natural and anthropogenic forcings and socio-economic activities. Some studies have indicated parabolic dunes can lose vegetation and transform into barchan and transverse dunes by environmental change such as decreased precipitation or lowered water table, as well as anthropogenic stress such as increased burning and grazing. These transformations and shifts between states of eco-geomorphic systems may have significant implications on land management and social-economic development. This study utilises the Extended-DECAL - parameterised by field measurements of dune topography and vegetation characteristics combined with remote sensing - to explore how increases in drought stress, wind strength, and grazing stress may lead to the activation of stabilised parabolic dunes into highly mobile barchans. The modelling results show that the mobility of an initial parabolic dune at the outset of perturbations determines to a large extent the capacity of a system to absorb the environmental change, and a slight increase in vegetation cover of an initial parabolic dune can increase the activation threshold significantly. Plants with a higher deposition tolerance increase the activation threshold for the climatic impact and sand transport rate, whereas the erosion tolerance of plants influences the patterns of resulting barchans. The change in the characteristics of eco-geomorphic interaction zones may indirectly reflect the dune stability and predict an