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Sample records for improved isolation protocol

  1. An Improved Protocol for Intact Chloroplasts and cpDNA Isolation in Conifers

    PubMed Central

    Vieira, Leila do Nascimento; Faoro, Helisson; Fraga, Hugo Pacheco de Freitas; Rogalski, Marcelo; de Souza, Emanuel Maltempi; de Oliveira Pedrosa, Fábio; Nodari, Rubens Onofre; Guerra, Miguel Pedro

    2014-01-01

    Background Performing chloroplast DNA (cpDNA) isolation is considered a major challenge among different plant groups, especially conifers. Isolating chloroplasts in conifers by such conventional methods as sucrose gradient and high salt has not been successful. So far, plastid genome sequencing protocols for conifer species have been based mainly on long-range PCR, which is known to be time-consuming and difficult to implement. Methodology/Principal Findings We developed a protocol for cpDNA isolation using three different conifer families: Araucaria angustifolia and Araucaria bidwilli (Araucariaceae), Podocarpus lambertii (Podocarpaceae) and Pinus patula (Pinaceae). The present protocol is based on high salt isolation buffer followed by saline Percoll gradient. Combining these two strategies allowed enhanced chloroplast isolation, along with decreased contamination caused by polysaccharides, polyphenols, proteins, and nuclear DNA in cpDNA. Microscopy images confirmed the presence of intact chloroplasts in high abundance. This method was applied to cpDNA isolation and subsequent sequencing by Illumina MiSeq (2×250 bp), using only 50 ng of cpDNA. Reference-guided chloroplast genome mapping showed that high average coverage was achieved for all evaluated species: 24.63 for A. angustifolia, 135.97 for A. bidwilli, 1196.10 for P. lambertii, and 64.68 for P. patula. Conclusion Results show that this improved protocol is suitable for enhanced quality and yield of chloroplasts and cpDNA isolation from conifers, providing a useful tool for studies that require isolated chloroplasts and/or whole cpDNA sequences. PMID:24392157

  2. An improved protocol for isolation and culturing of mouse spermatogonial stem cells.

    PubMed

    Baazm, Maryam; Abolhassani, Farid; Abbasi, Mahdi; Habibi Roudkenar, Mehryar; Amidi, Fardin; Beyer, Cordian

    2013-08-01

    Spermatogonial stem cells (SSCs) represent a unique testicular cell type that has the capacity for proliferating, differentiating, and transmitting genetic information. This particular cell type is a strong focus of stem cell research, with isolation and maintenance of SSCs as an important issue. Therefore, we attempted to optimize SSCs handling and to analyze different media and feeder layers, such as adult and embryonic Sertoli cells. The expression patterns of SSC-specific proteins (α6 and β1 integrins, Stra8, and DAZL) and restoration of spermatogenesis were chosen as parameters to demonstrate the efficacy of the protocol. SSCs were isolated from testes of 3- to 6-day-old mice using a magnetic activated cell-sorting system and Thy-1 antibody. After enrichment, SSCs were cultured for 7 days with different media and feeder layers. Then, SSCs were transplanted to recipient mice. Culturing on adult and embryonic Sertoli cells and in the presence of different growth factors [glial cell line-derived neurotrophic factor (GDNF), GDNF family receptor α1 (GFR-α1), and basic fibroblast growth factor (bFGF) resulted in an undifferentiated SSC phenotype with typical stem cell characteristics observed in vivo. The established co-culture model could help to improve the recovery and quality of stem cell preparation of mammalian testis.

  3. An improved protocol for the preparation and restriction enzyme digestion of pulsed-field gel electrophoresis agarose plugs for the analysis of Legionella isolates.

    PubMed

    Chang, Bin; Amemura-Maekawa, Junko; Watanabe, Haruo

    2009-01-01

    Pulsed-field gel electrophoresis (PFGE), which determines the genomic relatedness of isolates, is currently used for the epidemiological investigation of infectious agents such as bacteria. In particular, this method has been used for the epidemiological investigation of Legionella outbreaks. However, it takes 4 days to complete a Legionella-PFGE analysis. Due to partial digestion and DNA damage, the reproducibility of the obtained fragment digestion patterns is poor for this pathogen. In this study, we report an improved protocol that takes only 2 days to complete and that allows clear discrimination of the restriction profile with higher reproducibility than that previously achieved.

  4. Protocols for cofactor isolation of nitrogenase.

    PubMed

    Fay, Aaron W; Lee, Chi-Chung; Wiig, Jared A; Hu, Yilin; Ribbe, Markus W

    2011-01-01

    The iron-molybdenum cofactor (FeMoco) of the nitrogenase MoFe protein has remained a focal point in the field of bioinorganic chemistry for decades. This unique metal cluster has long been regarded as the actual site of dinitrogen reduction, and it is structurally complex and chemically unprecedented. A detailed characterization of the isolated FeMoco is crucial for elucidating the physiochemical properties of this biologically important cofactor. Such a study requires an effective technique to extract FeMoco intact, and in high yield, from the MoFe protein. A method involving the acid treatment of the MoFe protein and the subsequent extraction of FeMoco into an organic solvent was developed over 30 years ago and has been improved upon ever since. FeMoco isolated by this strategy is catalytically active and spectrally interesting, which provides a useful platform for future structure-function analyses of this unique cofactor. A general working protocol for FeMoco isolation is described in this chapter, along with some of the major modifications reported in the past years.

  5. Protocol for miRNA isolation from biofluids.

    PubMed

    Lekchnov, Evgeny A; Zaporozhchenko, Ivan A; Morozkin, Evgeny S; Bryzgunova, Olga E; Vlassov, Valentin V; Laktionov, Pavel P

    2016-04-15

    MicroRNAs (miRNAs) have been identified as promising biomarkers in cancer and other diseases. Packaging of miRNAs into vesicles and complexes with proteins ensures their stability in biological fluids but also complicates their isolation. Conventional protocols used to isolate cell-free RNA are generally successful in overcoming these difficulties; however, they are costly, labor-intensive, or heavily reliant on the use of hazardous chemicals. Here we describe a protocol that is suitable for isolating miRNAs from biofluids, including blood plasma and urine. The protocol is based on precipitation of proteins, denaturation of miRNA-containing complexes with octanoic acid and guanidine isothiocyanate, and subsequent purification of miRNA on spin columns. The efficacy of miRNA extraction by phenol-chloroform extraction, miRCURY RNA isolation kit--biofluids (Exiqon), and the proposed protocol was compared by quantitative reverse-transcription PCR of miR-16 and miR-126. The proposed protocol was slightly more effective for isolating miRNA from plasma and significantly superior to the other two methods for miRNA isolation from urine. Spectrophotometry and SDS-PAGE data suggest that the disparity in performance between miRCURY Biofluids and the proposed protocol can be attributed to differences in precipitation mechanisms, as confirmed by the retention of different proteins in the supernatant.

  6. REHABILITATION PROTOCOL AFTER ISOLATED POSTERIOR CRUCIATE LIGAMENT RECONSTRUCTION

    PubMed Central

    de Paula Leite Cury, Ricardo; Kiyomoto, Henry Dan; Rosal, Gustavo Fogolin; Bryk, Flávio Fernandes; de Oliveira, Victor Marques; de Camargo, Osmar Pedro Arbix

    2015-01-01

    To create a rehabilitation protocol following reconstruction of the posterior cruciate ligament (PCL), through a literature review. The literature review was conducted in the Medline and Embase databases, to search for data on biomechanical concepts and analyses relating to the posterior cruciate ligament of the knee. The search strategy was set up using the following rules: problem or injury in association with anatomical location terms; or surgical intervention procedure in association with rehabilitation terms. We began the process in this manner and subsequently introduced restrictions on certain terms to improve the search specificity. To design the protocol, a table was created for better data assessment, based on the time that elapsed between surgery and the start of physiotherapy. A rehabilitation protocol was created to improve weight-bearing control in the initial weeks after surgery, with the aid of a knee brace. Our aim was to achieve gains in total range of motion of the knee, which should be attained by the third month, thereby avoiding contractures resulting from the tissue healing process. Strengthening exercises and sensory-motor training were guided accordingly, thus avoiding overload on the graft and respecting the healing phases. The protocol proposed through this review was based on the current evidence relating to this subject. PMID:27047844

  7. An improved key agreement protocol based on chaos

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wang, Xingyuan; Zhao, Jianfeng

    2010-12-01

    Cryptography based on chaos theory has developed fast in the past few years, but most of the researches focus on secret key cryptography. There are few public key encryption algorithms and cryptographic protocols based on chaos, which are also of great importance for network security. We introduce an enhanced key agreement protocol based on Chebyshev chaotic map. Utilizing the semi-group property of Chebyshev polynomials, the proposed key exchange algorithm works like Diffie-Hellman algorithm. The improved protocol overcomes the drawbacks of several previously proposed chaotic key agreement protocols. Both analytical and experimental results show that it is effective and secure.

  8. Comparison between modified DNA extraction protocols and commercial isolation kits in grapevine (Vitis vinifera L.).

    PubMed

    Akkurt, M

    2012-08-13

    Various protocols have been developed and used for DNA extraction in grapevine. However, owing to the long duration of the isolation steps in previously developed protocols, researchers have preferred to use isolation kits for studies in recent years. In our study, the DNA yield and purity obtained using six methods--namely three DNA isolation protocols and three commercial DNA isolation kits--were compared. Modifications were made and the isolation steps were shortened in the previously developed DNA isolation protocols to achieve more rapid and practical protocols. The samples were taken from plants grown under vineyard and greenhouse conditions in two periods during spring and autumn. The best results among the six DNA isolation methods were discussed. The results were also supported with polymerase chain reaction analyses conducted with isolated DNAs.

  9. A quantitative telomeric chromatin isolation protocol identifies different telomeric states

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Grolimund, Larissa; Aeby, Eric; Hamelin, Romain; Armand, Florence; Chiappe, Diego; Moniatte, Marc; Lingner, Joachim

    2013-11-01

    Telomere composition changes during tumourigenesis, aging and in telomere syndromes in a poorly defined manner. Here we develop a quantitative telomeric chromatin isolation protocol (QTIP) for human cells, in which chromatin is cross-linked, immunopurified and analysed by mass spectrometry. QTIP involves stable isotope labelling by amino acids in cell culture (SILAC) to compare and identify quantitative differences in telomere protein composition of cells from various states. With QTIP, we specifically enrich telomeric DNA and all shelterin components. We validate the method characterizing changes at dysfunctional telomeres, and identify and validate known, as well as novel telomere-associated polypeptides including all THO subunits, SMCHD1 and LRIF1. We apply QTIP to long and short telomeres and detect increased density of SMCHD1 and LRIF1 and increased association of the shelterins TRF1, TIN2, TPP1 and POT1 with long telomeres. Our results validate QTIP to study telomeric states during normal development and in disease.

  10. An Accurate Link Correlation Estimator for Improving Wireless Protocol Performance

    PubMed Central

    Zhao, Zhiwei; Xu, Xianghua; Dong, Wei; Bu, Jiajun

    2015-01-01

    Wireless link correlation has shown significant impact on the performance of various sensor network protocols. Many works have been devoted to exploiting link correlation for protocol improvements. However, the effectiveness of these designs heavily relies on the accuracy of link correlation measurement. In this paper, we investigate state-of-the-art link correlation measurement and analyze the limitations of existing works. We then propose a novel lightweight and accurate link correlation estimation (LACE) approach based on the reasoning of link correlation formation. LACE combines both long-term and short-term link behaviors for link correlation estimation. We implement LACE as a stand-alone interface in TinyOS and incorporate it into both routing and flooding protocols. Simulation and testbed results show that LACE: (1) achieves more accurate and lightweight link correlation measurements than the state-of-the-art work; and (2) greatly improves the performance of protocols exploiting link correlation. PMID:25686314

  11. Protocol for simultaneous isolation of three important banana allergens.

    PubMed

    Nikolic, Jasna; Mrkic, Ivan; Grozdanovic, Milica; Popovic, Milica; Petersen, Arnd; Jappe, Uta; Gavrovic-Jankulovic, Marija

    2014-07-01

    Banana fruit (Musa acuminata) has become an important food allergen source in recent years. So far, 5 IgE reactive banana proteins have been identified, and the major allergens are: Mus a 2 (a class I chitinase, 31kDa), Mus a 4 (thaumatin-like protein, 21kDa), and Mus a 5 (β-1,3-glucanase, 33kDa). Due to variations in allergen expression levels, diagnostic reagents for food allergy can be improved by using individual allergen components instead of banana allergen extracts. The purpose of this study was to optimize the purification protocol of the three major allergens present in banana fruit: Mus a 2, Mus a 4 and Mus a 5. By employing a three-step purification protocol (a combination of anion-exchange, cation-exchange and reversed-phase chromatography) three important banana allergens were obtained in sufficient yield and high purity. Characterization of the purified proteins was performed by both biochemical (2-D PAGE, mass fingerprint and N-terminal sequencing) and immunochemical (immunoblot) methods. IgE reactivity to the purified allergens was tested by employing sera of five allergic patients. The purified allergens displayed higher sensitivity in IgE detection than the routinely used extracts. The three purified allergens are good candidates for reagents in component-based diagnosis of banana allergy.

  12. Algorithms for improved performance in cryptographic protocols.

    SciTech Connect

    Schroeppel, Richard Crabtree; Beaver, Cheryl Lynn

    2003-11-01

    Public key cryptographic algorithms provide data authentication and non-repudiation for electronic transmissions. The mathematical nature of the algorithms, however, means they require a significant amount of computation, and encrypted messages and digital signatures possess high bandwidth. Accordingly, there are many environments (e.g. wireless, ad-hoc, remote sensing networks) where public-key requirements are prohibitive and cannot be used. The use of elliptic curves in public-key computations has provided a means by which computations and bandwidth can be somewhat reduced. We report here on the research conducted in an LDRD aimed to find even more efficient algorithms and to make public-key cryptography available to a wider range of computing environments. We improved upon several algorithms, including one for which a patent has been applied. Further we discovered some new problems and relations on which future cryptographic algorithms may be based.

  13. Adult Rhabdomyosarcoma Survival Improved With Treatment on Multimodality Protocols

    SciTech Connect

    Gerber, Naamit Kurshan; Wexler, Leonard H.; Singer, Samuel; Alektiar, Kaled M.; Keohan, Mary Louise; Shi, Weiji; Zhang, Zhigang; Wolden, Suzanne

    2013-05-01

    Purpose: Rhabdomyosarcoma (RMS) is a pediatric sarcoma rarely occurring in adults. For unknown reasons, adults with RMS have worse outcomes than do children. Methods and Materials: We analyzed data from all patients who presented to Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center between 1990 and 2011 with RMS diagnosed at age 16 or older. One hundred forty-eight patients met the study criteria. Ten were excluded for lack of adequate data. Results: The median age was 28 years. The histologic diagnoses were as follows: embryonal 54%, alveolar 33%, pleomorphic 12%, and not otherwise specified 2%. The tumor site was unfavorable in 67% of patients. Thirty-three patients (24%) were at low risk, 61 (44%) at intermediate risk, and 44 (32%) at high risk. Forty-six percent were treated on or according to a prospective RMS protocol. The 5-year rate of overall survival (OS) was 45% for patients with nonmetastatic disease. The failure rates at 5 years for patients with nonmetastatic disease were 34% for local failure and 42% for distant failure. Among patients with nonmetastatic disease (n=94), significant factors associated with OS were histologic diagnosis, site, risk group, age, and protocol treatment. On multivariate analysis, risk group and protocol treatment were significant after adjustment for age. The 5-year OS was 54% for protocol patients versus 36% for nonprotocol patients. Conclusions: Survival in adult patients with nonmetastatic disease was significantly improved for those treated on RMS protocols, most of which are now open to adults.

  14. IMPROVED ISOLATION & ELECTROSPINNING OF ZEIN

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    The major historical use of zein, the predominant corn protein, has been in the fibers market. In order to evaluate new formulations of zein in the fibers market a simple means of isolating and generating fibers is necessary. We have evaluated the ability to electrospin zein from numerous solvents...

  15. The improvement and simulation for LEACH clustering routing protocol

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ji, Ai-guo; Zhao, Jun-xiang

    2017-01-01

    An energy-balanced unequal multi-hop clustering routing protocol LEACH-EUMC is proposed in this paper. The candidate cluster head nodes are elected firstly, then they compete to be formal cluster head nodes by adding energy and distance factors, finally the date are transferred to sink through multi-hop. The results of simulation show that the improved algorithm is better than LEACH in network lifetime, energy consumption and the amount of data transmission.

  16. Improvements to the NIST network time protocol servers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Levine, Judah

    2008-12-01

    The National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) operates 22 network time servers at various locations. These servers respond to requests for time in a number of different formats and provide time stamps that are directly traceable to the NIST atomic clock ensemble in Boulder. The link between the servers at locations outside of the NIST Boulder Laboratories and the atomic clock ensemble is provided by the Automated Computer Time Service (ACTS) system, which has a direct connection to the clock ensemble and which transmits time information over dial-up telephone lines with a two-way protocol to measure the transmission delay. I will discuss improvements to the ACTS servers and to the time servers themselves. These improvements have resulted in an improvement of almost an order of magnitude in the performance of the system.

  17. Improving security of the ping-pong protocol

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zawadzki, Piotr

    2013-01-01

    A security layer for the asymptotically secure ping-pong protocol is proposed and analyzed in the paper. The operation of the improvement exploits inevitable errors introduced by the eavesdropping in the control and message modes. Its role is similar to the privacy amplification algorithms known from the quantum key distribution schemes. Messages are processed in blocks which guarantees that an eavesdropper is faced with a computationally infeasible problem as long as the system parameters are within reasonable limits. The introduced additional information preprocessing does not require quantum memory registers and confidential communication is possible without prior key agreement or some shared secret.

  18. Quality: performance improvement, teamwork, information technology and protocols.

    PubMed

    Coleman, Nana E; Pon, Steven

    2013-04-01

    Using the Institute of Medicine framework that outlines the domains of quality, this article considers four key aspects of health care delivery which have the potential to significantly affect the quality of health care within the pediatric intensive care unit. The discussion covers: performance improvement and how existing methods for reporting, review, and analysis of medical error relate to patient care; team composition and workflow; and the impact of information technologies on clinical practice. Also considered is how protocol-driven and standardized practice affects both patients and the fiscal interests of the health care system.

  19. Protocol for Isolating the Mouse Circle of Willis.

    PubMed

    Hur, Justine Claire; Blaise, Régis; Limon, Isabelle

    2016-10-22

    The cerebral arterial circle (circulus arteriosus cerebri) or circle of Willis (CoW) is a circulatory anastomosis surrounding the optic chiasma and hypothalamus that supplies blood to the brain and surrounding structures. It has been implicated in several cerebrovascular disorders, including cerebral amyloid angiopathy (CAA)-associated vasculopathies, intracranial atherosclerosis and intracranial aneurysms. Studies of the molecular mechanisms underlying these diseases for the identification of novel drug targets for their prevention require animal models. Some of these models may be transgenic, whereas others will involve isolation of the cerebro-vasculature, including the CoW.The method described here is suitable for CoW isolation in any mouse lineage and has considerable potential for screening (expression of genes, protein production, posttranslational protein modifications, secretome analysis, etc.) studies on the large vessels of the mouse cerebro-vasculature. It can also be used for ex vivo studies, by adapting the organ bath system developed for isolated mouse olfactory arteries.

  20. An improved pyrite pretreatment protocol for kinetic and isotopic studies

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mirzoyan, Natella; Kamyshny, Alexey; Halevy, Itay

    2014-05-01

    An improved pyrite pretreatment protocol for kinetic and isotopic studies Natella Mirzoyan1, Alexey Kamyshny Jr.2, Itay Halevy1 1Earth and Planetary Sciences, Weizmann Institute of Science, Rehovot 76100, Israel 2Geological and Environmental Sciences, Ben-Gurion University of the Negev, Beer Sheva 84105, Israel Pyrite is one of the most abundant and widespread of the sulfide minerals with a central role in biogeochemical cycles of iron and sulfur. Due to its diverse roles in the natural and anthropogenic sulfur cycle, pyrite has been extensively studied in various experimental investigations of the kinetics of its dissolution and oxidation, the isotopic fractionations associated with these reactions, and the microbiological processes involved. Pretreatment of pyrite for removal of oxidation impurities to prevent experimental artifacts and inaccuracies is often practiced. While numerous pyrite-cleaning methods have been used in experiments, a common pyrite pretreatment method, often used to investigate pyrite chemistry by the isotopic fractionations associated with it, includes several rinses by HCl, acetone and deionized water. Elemental sulfur (S0) is a common product of incomplete pyrite oxidation. Removal of S0 is desirable to avoid experimental biases associated with its participation in pyrite transformations, but is more complicated than the removal of sulfate. Although rinsing with an organic solvent is in part aimed at removing S0, to the best of our knowledge, the extraction efficiency of S0 in existing protocols has not been assessed. We have developed and tested a new protocol for elemental sulfur removal from the surface of pyrite by ultrasonication with warm acetone. Our data demonstrate the presence of large fractions of S0 on untreated pyrite particle surfaces, of which only approximately 60% was removed by the commonly used pretreatment method. The new protocol described here was found to be more efficient at S0 removal than the commonly used method

  1. An improved protocol for DNA extraction from alkaline soil and sediment samples for constructing metagenomic libraries.

    PubMed

    Verma, Digvijay; Satyanarayana, T

    2011-09-01

    An improved single-step protocol has been developed for extracting pure community humic substance-free DNA from alkaline soils and sediments. The method is based on direct cell lysis in the presence of powdered activated charcoal and polyvinylpolypyrrolidone followed by precipitation with polyethyleneglycol and isopropanol. The strategy allows simultaneous isolation and purification of DNA while minimizing the loss of DNA with respect to other available protocols for metagenomic DNA extraction. Moreover, the purity levels are significant, which are difficult to attain with any of the methods reported in the literature for DNA extraction from soils. The DNA thus extracted was free from humic substances and, therefore, could be processed for restriction digestion, PCR amplification as well as for the construction of metagenomic libraries.

  2. An improved arbitrated quantum signature protocol based on the key-controlled chained CNOT encryption

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhang, Long; Sun, Hong-Wei; Zhang, Ke-Jia; Jia, Heng-Yue

    2017-03-01

    In this paper, a new quantum encryption based on the key-controlled chained CNOT operations, which is named KCCC encryption, is proposed. With the KCCC encryption, an improved arbitrated quantum signature (AQS) protocol is presented. Compared with the existing protocols, our protocol can effectively prevent forgery attacks and disavowal attacks. Moreover, only single state is required in the protocol. We hope it is helpful to further research in the design of AQS protocols in future.

  3. A Hybrid Quorum Protocol for Improved Availability, Capacity, Load and Reduced Overhead

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pandey, Parul; Tripathi, Maheshwari

    2016-12-01

    Data replication is playing a vital role in the design of distributed information systems. This paper presents a novel and efficient distributed algorithm for managing replicated data and for better performance and availability. This paper presents an extension to existing wheel protocol for improved performance. Wheel protocol imposes a logical wheel structure on the set of copies of an object and gives smallest read quorum. In addition to small read quorum size for read intensive applications, it is necessary to have good write availability as well. This paper proposes two hybrid wheel protocols, which superimpose logarithmic and ring protocols on top of the wheel protocol. It shows that, both protocols help in improving write availability, read capacity, load and message overhead and also compare their performances with wheel and other protocols. Hybrid protocols expand usage of wheel protocol to different type of applications.

  4. Isolation of Listeria monocytogenes from Food and Water: Official and Experimental Protocols.

    PubMed

    Azizoglu, Reha O; Gorski, Lisa; Kathariou, Sophia

    2014-05-01

    Listeria monocytogenes is frequently encountered in foods but often at low concentrations and typically in the presence of other microbiota, including nonpathogenic Listeria spp. The potential of L. monocytogenes to cause severe human disease mandates sensitive, accurate, and rapid detection in foods. Isolation of L. monocytogenes from foods is critical, not only for routine surveillance, but also for epidemiologic investigations. Isolation of the pathogen from water (especially surface water used for irrigation) is similarly important, as produce has been implicated in listeriosis outbreaks and contaminated water can be involved in contamination of produce. This unit provides basic protocols for the isolation of L. monocytogenes from foods and water.

  5. Isolation and purification of rabbit mesenchymal stem cells using an optimized protocol.

    PubMed

    Lin, Chunbo; Shen, Maorong; Chen, Weiping; Li, Xiaofeng; Luo, Daoming; Cai, Jinhong; Yang, Yuan

    2015-11-01

    Mesenchymal stem cells were first isolated and grown in vitro by Friedenstein over 40 yr ago; however, their isolation remains challenging as they lack unique markers for identification and are present in very small quantities in mesenchymal tissues and bone marrow. Using whole marrow samples, common methods for mesenchymal stem cell isolation are the adhesion method and density gradient fractionation. The whole marrow sample adhesion method still results in the nonspecific isolation of mononuclear cells, and activation and/or potential loss of target cells. Density gradient fractionation methods are complicated, and may result in contamination with toxic substances that affect cell viability. In the present study, we developed an optimized protocol for the isolation and purification of mesenchymal stem cells based on the principles of hypotonic lysis and natural sedimentation.

  6. Improving outpatient safety through effective electronic communication: a study protocol

    PubMed Central

    Hysong, Sylvia J; Sawhney, Mona K; Wilson, Lindsey; Sittig, Dean F; Esquivel, Adol; Watford, Monica; Davis, Traber; Espadas, Donna; Singh, Hardeep

    2009-01-01

    Background Health information technology and electronic medical records (EMRs) are potentially powerful systems-based interventions to facilitate diagnosis and treatment because they ensure the delivery of key new findings and other health related information to the practitioner. However, effective communication involves more than just information transfer; despite a state of the art EMR system, communication breakdowns can still occur. [1-3] In this project, we will adapt a model developed by the Systems Engineering Initiative for Patient Safety (SEIPS) to understand and improve the relationship between work systems and processes of care involved with electronic communication in EMRs. We plan to study three communication activities in the Veterans Health Administration's (VA) EMR: electronic communication of abnormal imaging and laboratory test results via automated notifications (i.e., alerts); electronic referral requests; and provider-to-pharmacy communication via computerized provider order entry (CPOE). Aim Our specific aim is to propose a protocol to evaluate the systems and processes affecting outcomes of electronic communication in the computerized patient record system (related to diagnostic test results, electronic referral requests, and CPOE prescriptions) using a human factors engineering approach, and hence guide the development of interventions for work system redesign. Design This research will consist of multiple qualitative methods of task analysis to identify potential sources of error related to diagnostic test result alerts, electronic referral requests, and CPOE; this will be followed by a series of focus groups to identify barriers, facilitators, and suggestions for improving the electronic communication system. Transcripts from all task analyses and focus groups will be analyzed using methods adapted from grounded theory and content analysis. PMID:19781075

  7. The effect of different isolation protocols on detection and molecular characterization of Campylobacter from poultry.

    PubMed

    Ugarte-Ruiz, M; Wassenaar, T M; Gómez-Barrero, S; Porrero, M C; Navarro-Gonzalez, N; Domínguez, L

    2013-11-01

    We determined whether different methods to isolate Campylobacter (including the ISO standard 10272:2006-1) affected the genotypes detectable from poultry, at three points during slaughter: caecal content, neck skin and meat. Carcasses from 28 independent flocks were thus sampled (subset A). In addition, ten neck skin samples from four flocks, ten caecal samples from ten different flocks and ten unrelated meat samples obtained from local supermarkets were collected (subset B). Campylobacter was isolated using eight different protocols: with and without enrichment using Bolton broth, Preston broth or Campyfood broth (CFB), followed by culture on either modified Charcoal Cefoperazone Deoxycholate Agar (mCCDA) or Campyfood agar (CFA). All obtained isolates were genotyped for flaA-SVR, and over half of the isolates were also typed by MLST. The strain richness, as a measure of number of detected fla-genotypes, obtained from subset A neck skin and caecal samples was higher than that of meat samples. In half of the cases, within a flock, at least one identical fla-genotype was obtained at all three slaughter stages, suggestive of autologous contamination of carcasses. Enrichment reduced the observed richness of isolates, while CFA plates increased richness compared to mCCDA plates, irrespective of inclusion of an enrichment step. Because the isolation protocol used influences both the yield and the fla-genotype richness obtained from poultry, this variable should be taken into account when different studies are being compared.

  8. An improved method for isolation of epithelial and stromal cells from the human endometrium

    PubMed Central

    MASUDA, Ayako; KATOH, Noriko; NAKABAYASHI, Kazuhiko; KATO, Kiyoko; SONODA, Kenzo; KITADE, Mari; TAKEDA, Satoru; HATA, Kenichiro; TOMIKAWA, Junko

    2016-01-01

    We aimed to improve the efficiency of isolating endometrial epithelial and stromal cells (EMECs and EMSCs) from the human endometrium. We revealed by immunohistochemical staining that the large tissue fragments remaining after collagenase treatment, which are usually discarded after the first filtration in the conventional protocol, consisted of glandular epithelial and stromal cells. Therefore, we established protease treatment and cell suspension conditions to dissociate single cells from the tissue fragments and isolated epithelial (EPCAM-positive) and stromal (CD13-positive) cells by fluorescence-activated cell sorting. Four independent experiments showed that, on average, 1.2 × 106 of EMECs and 2.8 × 106 EMSCs were isolated from one hysterectomy specimen. We confirmed that the isolated cells presented transcriptomic features highly similar to those of epithelial and stromal cells obtained by the conventional method. Our improved protocol facilitates future studies to better understand the molecular mechanisms underlying the dynamic changes of the endometrium during the menstrual cycle. PMID:26853786

  9. Improvement on "Quantum Key Agreement Protocol with Maximally Entangled States"

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chong, Song-Kong; Tsai, Chia-Wei; Hwang, Tzonelih

    2011-06-01

    Recently, Hsueh and Chen [in Proceedings of the 14th Information Security Conference, National Taiwan University of Science and Technology, Taipei, pp. 236-242, 2004] proposed a quantum key agreement (QKA) protocol with maximally entangled states. Their protocol allows two users to negotiate a secret key in such a way that no one can predetermine the shared key alone. This study points out two security flaws in their protocol: (1) a legitimate but malicious user can fully control the shared key alone; (2) an eavesdropper can obtain the shared key without being detected. A possible solution is presented to avoid these attacks and also Tsai et al.'s CNOT attack [in Proceedings of the 20th Cryptology and Information Security Conference, National Chiao Tung University, Hsinchu, pp. 210-213, 2010] on Hsueh and Chen protocol to obtain the shared key without being detected.

  10. Hypertension Improvement Project (HIP): study protocol and implementation challenges

    PubMed Central

    Dolor, Rowena J; Yancy, William S; Owen, William F; Matchar, David B; Samsa, Gregory P; Pollak, Kathryn I; Lin, Pao-Hwa; Ard, Jamy D; Prempeh, Maxwell; McGuire, Heather L; Batch, Bryan C; Fan, William; Svetkey, Laura P

    2009-01-01

    Background Hypertension affects 29% of the adult U.S. population and is a leading cause of heart disease, stroke, and kidney failure. Despite numerous effective treatments, only 53% of people with hypertension are at goal blood pressure. The chronic care model suggests that blood pressure control can be achieved by improving how patients and physicians address patient self-care. Methods and design This paper describes the protocol of a nested 2 × 2 randomized controlled trial to test the separate and combined effects on systolic blood pressure of a behavioral intervention for patients and a quality improvement-type intervention for physicians. Primary care practices were randomly assigned to the physician intervention or to the physician control condition. Physician randomization occurred at the clinic level. The physician intervention included training and performance monitoring. The training comprised 2 internet-based modules detailing both the JNC-7 hypertension guidelines and lifestyle modifications for hypertension. Performance data were collected for 18 months, and feedback was provided to physicians every 3 months. Patient participants in both intervention and control clinics were individually randomized to the patient intervention or to usual care. The patient intervention consisted of a 6-month behavioral intervention conducted by trained interventionists in 20 group sessions, followed by 12 monthly phone contacts by community health advisors. Follow-up measurements were performed at 6 and 18 months. The primary outcome was the mean change in systolic blood pressure at 6 months. Secondary outcomes were diastolic blood pressure and the proportion of patients with adequate blood pressure control at 6 and 18 months. Discussion Overall, 8 practices (4 per treatment group), 32 physicians (4 per practice; 16 per treatment group), and 574 patients (289 control and 285 intervention) were enrolled. Baseline characteristics of patients and providers and the

  11. Used protocols for isolation and propagation of ovarian stem cells, different cells with different traits.

    PubMed

    Yazdekhasti, Hossein; Rajabi, Zahra; Parvari, Soraya; Abbasi, Mehdi

    2016-10-20

    Although existence of ovarian stem cells (OSCs) in mammalian postnatal ovary is still under controversy, however, it has been almost accepted that OSCs are contributing actively to folliculogenesis and neo-oogenesis. Recently, various methods with different efficacies have been employed for OSCs isolation from ovarian tissue, which these methods could be chosen depends on aim of isolation and accessible equipments and materials in lab. Although isolated OSCs from different methods have various traits and characterizations, which might become from their different nature and origin, however these stem cells are promising source for woman infertility treatment or source of energy for women with a history of repeat IVF failure in near future. This review has brought together and summarized currently used protocols for isolation and propagation of OSCs in vitro.

  12. An Improved RSA Based User Authentication and Session Key Agreement Protocol Usable in TMIS.

    PubMed

    Amin, Ruhul; Biswas, G P

    2015-08-01

    Recently, Giri et al.'s proposed a RSA cryptosystem based remote user authentication scheme for telecare medical information system and claimed that the protocol is secure against all the relevant security attacks. However, we have scrutinized the Giri et al.'s protocol and pointed out that the protocol is not secure against off-line password guessing attack, privileged insider attack and also suffers from anonymity problem. Moreover, the extension of password guessing attack leads to more security weaknesses. Therefore, this protocol needs improvement in terms of security before implementing in real-life application. To fix the mentioned security pitfalls, this paper proposes an improved scheme over Giri et al.'s scheme, which preserves user anonymity property. We have then simulated the proposed protocol using widely-accepted AVISPA tool which ensures that the protocol is SAFE under OFMC and CL-AtSe models, that means the same protocol is secure against active and passive attacks including replay and man-in-the-middle attacks. The informal cryptanalysis has been also presented, which confirmed that the proposed protocol provides well security protection on the relevant security attacks. The performance analysis section compares the proposed protocol with other existing protocols in terms of security and it has been observed that the protocol provides more security and achieves additional functionalities such as user anonymity and session key verification.

  13. DNA isolation protocol for the medicinal plant lemon balm (Melissa officinalis, Lamiaceae).

    PubMed

    Ghaffariyan, S; Mohammadi, S A; Aharizad, S

    2012-04-27

    Lemon balm (Melissa officinalis) is a medicinal plant that is widely used as a sedative or calmant, spasmolytic and antibacterial agent and sleep aid. This has led to a high demand for lemon balm products, resulting in the extinction of this species in some of its natural habitats. Molecular techniques have increasingly been used in plant diversity conservation and isolation of PCR amplifiable genomic DNA is an important pre-requisite. Lemon balm contains high levels of polyphenols and polysaccharides, which pose a major challenge for the isolation of high-quality DNA. We compared different genomic DNA extraction protocols, including traditional phenol-chloroform DNA extraction protocols and two commercial kits for DNA purification for their ability to produce good-quality DNA from fresh leaves of five lemon balm genotypes. Quality and quantity of the DNA samples were determined using 0.8% agarose gel electrophoresis and a spectrophotometer. The DNA purity was further confirmed by PCR amplification using barley retrotransposon LTR base primers. The spectral quality of DNA as measured by the A(260)/A(280) ratio ranged from 1.46 to 2.37. The Fermentase genomic DNA purification kit and the CTAB extraction protocol using PVP and ammonium acetate to overcome the high levels of polyphenols and polysaccharides yielded high-quality DNA with a mean A(260)/A(280) ratio of 1.87. The quantity of DNA and its PCR purity were similar with all the protocols, but considering the time and cost required for extraction of DNA from a large number of samples, the CTAB protocol using PVP and ammonium acetate is suitable for lemon balm.

  14. Comparative evaluation of three lignin isolation protocols for various wood species.

    PubMed

    Guerra, Anderson; Filpponen, Ilari; Lucia, Lucian A; Argyropoulos, Dimitris S

    2006-12-27

    Milled wood lignin (MWL), cellulolytic enzyme lignin (CEL), and enzymatic mild acidolysis lignin (EMAL) were isolated from different wood species and characterized by various techniques. The EMAL protocol offered gravimetric lignin yields 2-5 times greater than those of the corresponding MWL and CEL. The purities of the EMALs were 3.75-10.6% higher than those of their corresponding CELs, depending upon the wood species from which they were isolated. Molecular weight analyses showed that the EMAL protocol isolates lignin fractions that are not accessed by the other procedures evaluated, while 31P NMR spectroscopy revealed that MWL is more condensed and bears more phenolic hydroxyl groups than EMAL and CEL. The yields and purities of EMAL, MWL, and CEL from hardwood were greater than those obtained for the examined softwoods. Structural details obtained by DFRC (derivatization followed by reductive cleavage)/31P NMR revealed different contents of condensed and uncondensed beta-O-aryl ether structures, dibenzodioxocins, and condensed and uncondensed phenolic hydroxyl and carboxylic acid groups within lignins isolated from different wood species.

  15. A protocol for the culture and isolation of murine synovial fibroblasts

    PubMed Central

    Zhao, Jinjun; Ouyang, Qingqing; Hu, Ziyou; Huang, Qin; Wu, Jing; Wang, Ran; Yang, Min

    2016-01-01

    The culture of synovial fibroblasts (SFs) is one of the most effective tools for investigating the pathology and physiology of synovial tissues and should prove useful for identifying the importance of SFs in disease as well as for the development of novel therapeutic approaches for several chronic joint diseases, such as rheumatoid arthritis. However, thus far, a detailed protocol for the primary culture and isolation of murine SFs has not been established. Therefore, the present study describes an easy and convenient method for isolating and culturing SFs from C57BL/6 mice. This protocol can be divided into 4 stages: Isolation of synovial tissues, isolation of SFs, seeding of SFs for growth in culture and purity analysis of SFs using the four cell markers, vimentin, cluster of differentiation 90.2 (CD90.2; Thy-1.2), intracellular adhesion molecule 1 (CD54) and vascular cell adhesion molecule 1 (CD106). This method is efficient and a purified population of SFs can be obtained 10 days after the initiation of culture. PMID:27446536

  16. An improved protocol to study the plant cell wall proteome

    PubMed Central

    Printz, Bruno; Dos Santos Morais, Raphaël; Wienkoop, Stefanie; Sergeant, Kjell; Lutts, Stanley; Hausman, Jean-Francois; Renaut, Jenny

    2015-01-01

    Cell wall proteins were extracted from alfalfa stems according to a three-steps extraction procedure using sequentially CaCl2, EGTA, and LiCl-complemented buffers. The efficiency of this protocol for extracting cell wall proteins was compared with the two previously published methods optimized for alfalfa stem cell wall protein analysis. Following LC-MS/MS analysis the three-steps extraction procedure resulted in the identification of the highest number of cell wall proteins (242 NCBInr identifiers) and gave the lowest percentage of non-cell wall proteins (about 30%). However, the three protocols are rather complementary than substitutive since 43% of the identified proteins were specific to one protocol. This three-step protocol was therefore selected for a more detailed proteomic characterization using 2D-gel electrophoresis. With this technique, 75% of the identified proteins were shown to be fraction-specific and 72.7% were predicted as belonging to the cell wall compartment. Although, being less sensitive than LC-MS/MS approaches in detecting and identifying low-abundant proteins, gel-based approaches are valuable tools for the differentiation and relative quantification of protein isoforms and/or modified proteins. In particular isoforms, having variations in their amino-acid sequence and/or carrying different N-linked glycan chains were detected and characterized. This study highlights how the extracting protocols as well as the analytical techniques devoted to the study of the plant cell wall proteome are complementary and how they may be combined to elucidate the dynamism of the plant cell wall proteome in biological studies. Data are available via ProteomeXchange with identifier PXD001927. PMID:25914713

  17. Security improvement on an anonymous key agreement protocol based on chaotic maps

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Xue, Kaiping; Hong, Peilin

    2012-07-01

    In 2009, Tseng et al. proposed a password sharing and chaotic map based key agreement protocol (Tseng et al.'s protocol). They claimed that the protocol provided mutual authentication between a server and a user, and allowed the user to anonymously interact with the server to establish a shared session key. However, in 2011, Niu et al. have proved that Tseng et al.'s protocol cannot guarantee user anonymity and protocol security when there is an internal adversary who is a legitimate user. Also it cannot provide perfect forward secrecy. Then Niu et al. introduced a trust third party (TTP) into their protocol designing (Niu et al.'s protocol). But according to our research, Niu et al.'s protocol is found to have several unsatisfactory drawbacks. Based on reconsidering Tseng et al.'s protocol without introducing TTP, we give some improvements to meet the original security and performance requirements. Meanwhile our proposed protocol overcomes the security flaws of Tseng et al.'s protocol.

  18. Cryptanalysis and improvement of quantum secure communication network protocol with entangled photons for mobile communications

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gao, Gan

    2014-12-01

    Recently, a communication protocol called controlled bidirectional quantum secret direct communication for mobile networks was proposed by Chou et al (2014 Mobile Netw. Appl. 19 121). We study the security of the proposed communication protocol and find that it is not secure. The controller, Telecom Company, may eavesdrop secret messages from mobile devices without being detected. Finally, we give a possible improvement of the communication protocol.

  19. Cryptanalysis and improvement of a quantum private set intersection protocol

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cheng, Xiaogang; Guo, Ren; Chen, Yonghong

    2017-02-01

    A recent Quantum Private Set Intersection (QPSI) scheme is crypt-analyzed. The original claimed communication overhead is shown to be not accurate. And the original security definition is passive and not fair. To ensure fairness, a passive third party is introduced. It is also shown that unconditional fairness of QPSI protocol is impossible. Since otherwise, it would violate a well-known impossible quantum cryptography result.

  20. A Xenogeneic-Free Protocol for Isolation and Expansion of Human Adipose Stem Cells for Clinical Uses

    PubMed Central

    Escobedo-Lucea, Carmen; Bellver, Carmen; Gandia, Carolina; Sanz-Garcia, Andres; Esteban, Francisco J.; Mirabet, Vicente; Forte, Giancarlo; Moreno, Isabel; Lezameta, Melissa; Ayuso-Sacido, Angel; Garcia-Verdugo, José M.

    2013-01-01

    Human adipose stem cells (hASCs) play a crucial role in the fields of regenerative medicine and tissue engineering for different reasons: the abundance of adipose tissue, their easy harvesting, the ability to multipotent differentiation and the fact that they do not trigger allogeneic blood response or secrete cytokines that act as immunosuppressants. The vast majority of protocols use animal origin reagents, with the underlying risk of transmitting infections by non-human pathogens. We have designed a protocol to isolate and maintain the properties of hASCs avoiding xenogeneic reagents. These changes not only preserve hASCs morphology, but also increase cell proliferation and maintain their stem cell marker profile. On the other hand, human serum albumin (HSA), Tryple® and human Serum (HS), do not affect hASCs multipotent differentiation ability. The amendments introduced do not trigger modifications in the transcriptional profile of hASCs, alterations in key biochemical pathways or malignization. Thus, we have proven that it is possible to isolate and maintain hASCs avoiding animal reagents and, at the same time, preserving crucial culture parameters during long term culture. Thereby we have revealed a novel and effective tool for the improvement of clinical, cell-based therapies. PMID:23874459

  1. Inter-comparison of NIOSH and IMPROVE protocols for OC and EC determination: implications for inter-protocol data conversion

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wu, Cheng; Huang, X. H. Hilda; Ng, Wai Man; Griffith, Stephen M.; Zhen Yu, Jian

    2016-09-01

    Organic carbon (OC) and elemental carbon (EC) are operationally defined by analytical methods. As a result, OC and EC measurements are protocol dependent, leading to uncertainties in their quantification. In this study, more than 1300 Hong Kong samples were analyzed using both National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH) thermal optical transmittance (TOT) and Interagency Monitoring of Protected Visual Environment (IMPROVE) thermal optical reflectance (TOR) protocols to explore the cause of EC disagreement between the two protocols. EC discrepancy mainly (83 %) arises from a difference in peak inert mode temperature, which determines the allocation of OC4NSH, while the rest (17 %) is attributed to a difference in the optical method (transmittance vs. reflectance) applied for the charring correction. Evidence shows that the magnitude of the EC discrepancy is positively correlated with the intensity of the biomass burning signal, whereby biomass burning increases the fraction of OC4NSH and widens the disagreement in the inter-protocol EC determination. It is also found that the EC discrepancy is positively correlated with the abundance of metal oxide in the samples. Two approaches (M1 and M2) that translate NIOSH TOT OC and EC data into IMPROVE TOR OC and EC data are proposed. M1 uses direct relationship between ECNSH_TOT and ECIMP_TOR for reconstruction: M1 : ECIMP_TOR = a × ECNSH_TOT + b; while M2 deconstructs ECIMP_TOR into several terms based on analysis principles and applies regression only on the unknown terms: M2 : ECIMP_TOR = AECNSH + OC4NSH - (a × PCNSH_TOR + b), where AECNSH, apparent EC by the NIOSH protocol, is the carbon that evolves in the He-O2 analysis stage, OC4NSH is the carbon that evolves at the fourth temperature step of the pure helium analysis stage of NIOSH, and PCNSH_TOR is the pyrolyzed carbon as determined by the NIOSH protocol. The implementation of M1 to all urban site data (without considering seasonal specificity

  2. Improving the security of protocols of quantum key agreement solely using Bell states and Bell measurement

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhu, Zhen-Chao; Hu, Ai-Qun; Fu, An-Min

    2015-11-01

    In a recent study, Shukla et al. (Quantum Inf Process 13:2391-2405, 2014) proposed two quantum key agreement protocols based on Bell state and Bell measurement, and they claimed that their two protocols were secure. However, in this study, we will show that the three-party protocol they proposed is not secure. Any participant in the protocol can directly obtain other two participants' secret keys. More seriously, two dishonest participants in the protocol can conclude to determine the shared key alone. Furthermore, we will show that there is another minor flaw in their two protocols; that is, eavesdroppers can flip any bit of the final key without introducing any error. In the end, some possible improvements are proposed to avoid these flaws.

  3. Improving security in the Fiber Distributed Data Interface (FDDI) protocol

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Jones, Benjamin E.

    1992-09-01

    The arrival of high speed packet switched fiber optic LAN's has allowed local area design architectures to be used for larger metropolitan area network (MAN) implementations. The current LAN security mechanisms used in larger and faster fiber optic LAN's and MAN's are often inappropriate or unacceptable for use with emerging applications. The protocol of the Fiber Distributed Data Interface (FDDI) standard provides a natural means for message integrity and availability verification. However, privacy in FDDI is facilitated at higher layers through a generic LAN standard. This thesis proposes a modification to the FDDI protocol implemented at the medium access control (MAC) sublayer, which integrates a confidentiality mechanism for data transfer. The modification provides a simple comprehensive security package to meet the high performance needs of current and emerging applications. In the proposed modification, the inherent properties of the ring are exploited using a unique Central Key Translator to distribute initial session keys. A symmetric bit stream cipher based on modulo2 addition is used for encryption/decryption by the transmitting and receiving stations. Part of the plain text from transmitted message frames is used as feedback to generate new session keys.

  4. Optimized Protocol for Isolation of Multipotent Mesenchymal Stromal Cells from Human Umbilical Cord.

    PubMed

    Romanov, Yu A; Balashova, E E; Volgina, N E; Kabaeva, N V; Dugina, T N; Sukhikh, G T

    2015-11-01

    Extraembryonic tissues, in particular, umbilical cord stroma are promising sources of multipotent mesenchymal stromal cells for regenerative medicine. In recent years, methods for isolation of mesenchymal stromal cells from different compartments of the umbilical cords based on enzymatic disaggregation of the tissue or on tissue explants have been proposed. Here we propose a protocol of isolation of multipotent mesenchymal stromal cells from the whole umbilical cord that combines the advantages of each approach and ensures sufficient cell yield for further experimental and clinical applications. A combination of short-term incubation of tissue fragments on cold collagenase solution followed by their culturing in the form of explants significantly increased the yield of cells with high proliferative activity, typical pluripotent mesenchymal stromal cell phenotype, and preserved differentiation capacity.

  5. Development of an efficient protocol of RNA isolation from recalcitrant tree tissues.

    PubMed

    Wang, Xuchu; Tian, Weimin; Li, Yinxin

    2008-01-01

    Isolation of RNA from recalcitrant tree tissues has been problematic due to large amounts of secondary metabolites and interfering compounds in their cells. We have developed an efficient RNA extraction method, which yielded high-quality RNA preparations from tissues of the lychee tree. The method reported here utilized EDTA, LSS, and CTAB to successfully inhibit RNase activities. It was found that a high ionic strength brought about by 2 M NaCl was necessary. In addition, secondary metabolites and other interfering compounds were effectively removed using sodium borate and PVPP under a deoxidized condition. The quality of purified RNA was tested by both RACE and Northern blotting analysis, ensuring that the RNA could be used for subsequent gene expression analysis. This method has been successfully applied to purify RNA from 15 other plant species. In conclusion, the protocol reported here is expected to have excellent applications for RNA isolation from recalcitrant plant tissues.

  6. Protocols for nuclei isolation and nuclear protein extraction from the resurrection plant Xerophyta viscosa for proteomic studies.

    PubMed

    Abdalla, Kamal Omer; Thomson, Jennifer Ann; Rafudeen, Muhammad Suhail

    2009-01-15

    The plant nucleus is an important subcellular organelle but the isolation of pure and enriched nuclei from plants and subsequent extraction of nuclear proteins for proteomic studies is challenging. Here, we present protocols for nuclei isolation and nuclear protein extraction from the resurrection plant, Xerophyta viscosa, and show optimization and modification of the most critical steps.

  7. Laboratory diagnosis of contagious ecthyma: comparison of different PCR protocols with virus isolation in cell culture.

    PubMed

    Kottaridi, Christine; Nomikou, Kiki; Lelli, Rossella; Markoulatos, Panayotis; Mangana, Olga

    2006-06-01

    A new polymerase chain reaction (PCR) assay for rapid diagnosis of contagious ecthyma was designed and applied to 21 clinical samples from Greece. This assay, which detects a highly conserved gene from the parapox genome, was evaluated for its sensitivity and specificity in order to be considered as a useful diagnostic tool. A comparative study with two published PCR protocols one using primers PPP1-PPP3, PPP1-PPP4 which targets putative virion envelope gene B2L and the other using VIR1-VIR2 primers which amplifies ORF virus interferon resistant (VIR) gene, as well as cell culture virus neutralization assay was carried out. All samples tested were amplified successfully with the PCR protocol established in the laboratory. The combination of primers PPP1-PPP3 and PPP1-PPP4 in a semi-nested PCR gave a positive result in 20 of 21 samples while primers VIR1-VIR2 failed to amplify successfully 7 of 21 samples. The diagnostic value of parapox viral DNA amplification was also compared with the results of virus isolation by cell culture and was positive in three samples that the virus isolation was obtained.

  8. Isolation of exosomes by differential centrifugation: Theoretical analysis of a commonly used protocol

    PubMed Central

    Livshts, Mikhail A.; Khomyakova, Elena; Evtushenko, Evgeniy G.; Lazarev, Vassili N.; Kulemin, Nikolay A.; Semina, Svetlana E.; Generozov, Edward V.; Govorun, Vadim M.

    2015-01-01

    Exosomes, small (40–100 nm) extracellular membranous vesicles, attract enormous research interest because they are carriers of disease markers and a prospective delivery system for therapeutic agents. Differential centrifugation, the prevalent method of exosome isolation, frequently produces dissimilar and improper results because of the faulty practice of using a common centrifugation protocol with different rotors. Moreover, as recommended by suppliers, adjusting the centrifugation duration according to rotor K-factors does not work for “fixed-angle” rotors. For both types of rotors – “swinging bucket” and “fixed-angle” – we express the theoretically expected proportion of pelleted vesicles of a given size and the “cut-off” size of completely sedimented vesicles as dependent on the centrifugation force and duration and the sedimentation path-lengths. The proper centrifugation conditions can be selected using relatively simple theoretical estimates of the “cut-off” sizes of vesicles. Experimental verification on exosomes isolated from HT29 cell culture supernatant confirmed the main theoretical statements. Measured by the nanoparticle tracking analysis (NTA) technique, the concentration and size distribution of the vesicles after centrifugation agree with those theoretically expected. To simplify this “cut-off”-size-based adjustment of centrifugation protocol for any rotor, we developed a web-calculator. PMID:26616523

  9. Isolation of exosomes by differential centrifugation: Theoretical analysis of a commonly used protocol

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Livshts, Mikhail A.; Khomyakova, Elena; Evtushenko, Evgeniy G.; Lazarev, Vassili N.; Kulemin, Nikolay A.; Semina, Svetlana E.; Generozov, Edward V.; Govorun, Vadim M.

    2015-11-01

    Exosomes, small (40-100 nm) extracellular membranous vesicles, attract enormous research interest because they are carriers of disease markers and a prospective delivery system for therapeutic agents. Differential centrifugation, the prevalent method of exosome isolation, frequently produces dissimilar and improper results because of the faulty practice of using a common centrifugation protocol with different rotors. Moreover, as recommended by suppliers, adjusting the centrifugation duration according to rotor K-factors does not work for “fixed-angle” rotors. For both types of rotors - “swinging bucket” and “fixed-angle” - we express the theoretically expected proportion of pelleted vesicles of a given size and the “cut-off” size of completely sedimented vesicles as dependent on the centrifugation force and duration and the sedimentation path-lengths. The proper centrifugation conditions can be selected using relatively simple theoretical estimates of the “cut-off” sizes of vesicles. Experimental verification on exosomes isolated from HT29 cell culture supernatant confirmed the main theoretical statements. Measured by the nanoparticle tracking analysis (NTA) technique, the concentration and size distribution of the vesicles after centrifugation agree with those theoretically expected. To simplify this “cut-off”-size-based adjustment of centrifugation protocol for any rotor, we developed a web-calculator.

  10. An improved lookup protocol model for peer-to-peer networks

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Fan, Wei; Ye, Dongfen

    2011-12-01

    With the development of the peer-to-peer (P2P) technology, file sharing is becoming the hottest, fastest growing application on the Internet. Although we can benefit from different protocols separately, our research shows that if there exists a proper model, most of the seemingly different protocols can be classified to a same framework. In this paper, we propose an improved Chord arithmetic based on the binary tree for P2P networks. We perform extensive simulations to study our proposed protocol. The results show that the improved Chord reduces the average lookup path length without increasing the joining and departing complexity.

  11. Protocol for Maximizing Energy Savings and Indoor Environmental Quality Improvements when Retrofiting Apartments

    SciTech Connect

    Noris, Federico; Delp, William W.; Vermeer, Kimberly; Adamkiewicz, Gary; Singer, Brett C.; Fisk, William J.

    2012-06-18

    The current focus on building energy retrofit provides an opportunity to simultaneously improve indoor environmental quality (IEQ). Toward this end, we developed a protocol for selecting packages of retrofits that both save energy and improve IEQ in apartments. The protocol specifies the methodology for selecting retrofits from a candidate list while addressing expected energy savings, IEQ impacts, and costs in an integrated manner. Interviews, inspections and measurements are specified to collect the needed input information. The protocol was applied to 17 apartments in three buildings in two different climates within California. Diagnostic measurements and surveys conducted before and after retrofit implementation indicate enhanced apartment performance.

  12. Protocol for maximizing energy savings and indoor environmental quality improvements when retrofitting apartments

    SciTech Connect

    Noris, Federico; Delp, William W.; Vermeer, Kimberly; Adamkiewicz, Gary; Singer, Brett C.; Fisk, William J.

    2013-06-01

    The current focus on building energy retrofit provides an opportunity to simultaneously improve indoor environmental quality (IEQ). Toward this end, we developed a protocol for selecting packages of retrofits that both save energy and improve IEQ in apartments. The protocol specifies the methodology for selecting retrofits from a candidate list while addressing expected energy savings, IEQ impacts, and costs in an integrated manner. Interviews, inspections and measurements are specified to collect the needed input information. The protocol was applied to 17 apartments in three buildings in two different climates within California. Diagnostic measurements and surveys conducted before and after retrofit implementation indicate enhanced apartment performance.

  13. Intelligent QoS routing algorithm based on improved AODV protocol for Ad Hoc networks

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Huibin, Liu; Jun, Zhang

    2016-04-01

    Mobile Ad Hoc Networks were playing an increasingly important part in disaster reliefs, military battlefields and scientific explorations. However, networks routing difficulties are more and more outstanding due to inherent structures. This paper proposed an improved cuckoo searching-based Ad hoc On-Demand Distance Vector Routing protocol (CSAODV). It elaborately designs the calculation methods of optimal routing algorithm used by protocol and transmission mechanism of communication-package. In calculation of optimal routing algorithm by CS Algorithm, by increasing QoS constraint, the found optimal routing algorithm can conform to the requirements of specified bandwidth and time delay, and a certain balance can be obtained among computation spending, bandwidth and time delay. Take advantage of NS2 simulation software to take performance test on protocol in three circumstances and validate the feasibility and validity of CSAODV protocol. In results, CSAODV routing protocol is more adapt to the change of network topological structure than AODV protocol, which improves package delivery fraction of protocol effectively, reduce the transmission time delay of network, reduce the extra burden to network brought by controlling information, and improve the routing efficiency of network.

  14. High Hydrostatic Pressure Pretreatment of Whey Protein Isolates Improves Their Digestibility and Antioxidant Capacity

    PubMed Central

    Iskandar, Michèle M.; Lands, Larry C.; Sabally, Kebba; Azadi, Behnam; Meehan, Brian; Mawji, Nadir; Skinner, Cameron D.; Kubow, Stan

    2015-01-01

    Whey proteins have well-established antioxidant and anti-inflammatory bioactivities. High hydrostatic pressure processing of whey protein isolates increases their in vitro digestibility resulting in enhanced antioxidant and anti-inflammatory effects. This study compared the effects of different digestion protocols on the digestibility of pressurized (pWPI) and native (nWPI) whey protein isolates and the antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties of the hydrolysates. The pepsin-pancreatin digestion protocol was modified to better simulate human digestion by adjusting temperature and pH conditions, incubation times, enzymes utilized, enzyme-to-substrate ratio and ultrafiltration membrane molecular weight cut-off. pWPI showed a significantly greater proteolysis rate and rate of peptide appearance regardless of digestion protocol. Both digestion methods generated a greater relative abundance of eluting peptides and the appearance of new peptide peaks in association with pWPI digestion in comparison to nWPI hydrolysates. Hydrolysates of pWPI from both digestion conditions showed enhanced ferric-reducing antioxidant power relative to nWPI hydrolysates. Likewise, pWPI hydrolysates from both digestion protocols showed similar enhanced antioxidant and anti-inflammatory effects in a respiratory epithelial cell line as compared to nWPI hydrolysates. These findings indicate that regardless of considerable variations of in vitro digestion protocols, pressurization of WPI leads to more efficient digestion that improves its antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties. PMID:28231198

  15. New research and tools lead to improved earthquake alerting protocols

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Wald, David J.

    2009-01-01

    What’s the best way to get alerted about the occurrence and potential impact of an earthquake? The answer to that question has changed dramatically of late, in part due to improvements in earthquake science, and in part by the implementation of new research in the delivery of earthquake information

  16. A DNA extraction protocol for improved DNA yield from individual mosquitoes

    PubMed Central

    Nieman, Catelyn C.; Yamasaki, Youki; Collier, Travis C.; Lee, Yoosook

    2015-01-01

    Typical DNA extraction protocols from commercially available kits provide an adequate amount of DNA from a single individual mosquito sufficient for PCR-based assays. However, next-generation sequencing applications and high-throughput SNP genotyping assays exposed the limitation of DNA quantity one usually gets from a single individual mosquito. Whole genome amplification could alleviate the issue but it also creates bias in genome representation. While trying to find alternative DNA extraction protocols for improved DNA yield, we found that a combination of the tissue lysis protocol from Life Technologies and the DNA extraction protocol from Qiagen yielded a higher DNA amount than the protocol using the Qiagen or Life Technologies kit only. We have not rigorously tested all the possible combinations of extraction protocols; we also only tested this on mosquito samples. Therefore, our finding should be noted as a suggestion for improving people’s own DNA extraction protocols and not as an advertisement of a commercially available product. PMID:26937269

  17. An efficient protocol for tissue sampling and DNA isolation from the stem bark of Leguminosae trees.

    PubMed

    Novaes, R M L; Rodrigues, J G; Lovato, M B

    2009-02-03

    Traditionally, molecular studies of plant species have used leaves as the source of DNA. However, sampling leaves from tall tree species can be quite difficult and expensive. We developed a sequence of procedures for using stem bark as a source of DNA from Leguminosae trees of the Atlantic Forest and the Cerrado. Leguminosae is an important species-rich family in these two highly diverse and endangered biomes. A modified CTAB protocol for DNA isolation is described, and details of the procedures for sampling and storage of the bark are given. The procedures were initially developed for three species, and then their applicability for 15 other species was evaluated. DNA of satisfactory quality was obtained from the bark of all species. The amounts of DNA obtained from leaves were slightly higher than from bark samples, while its purity was the same. Storing the bark frozen or by drying in silica gel yielded similar results. Polymerase chain reaction amplification worked for both plastid and nuclear genomes. This alternative for isolating DNA from bark samples of trees facilitates field work with these tree species.

  18. Improved regeneration and transformation protocols for three strawberry cultivars.

    PubMed

    Zakaria, Hossam; Hussein, Gihan M; Abdel-Hadi, Abdel-Hadi A; Abdallah, Naglaa A

    2014-01-01

    Strawberry (Fragaria × ananassa) is an economically important soft fruit crop with polyploid genome which makes the breeding of new cultivars difficult. Simple and efficient method for transformation and regeneration is required for cultivars improvement in strawberry. In the present study, adventitious shoot regeneration has been investigated in three cultivated strawberry plants, i.e., Festival, Sweet Charly and Florida via direct organogenesis using the in vitro juvenile leaves as explants. Explants were collected after sub-culturing on a propagation medium composed of MS supplemented with 0.5 mg/l BA; 0.1 mg/l GA3 and 0.1 mg/l IBA. To select the suitable organogenesis, the explants of the three cultivars were cultured on MS medium supplemented with different concentrations of TDZ (1, 2, 3, and 4 mg/l), then incubated at a temperature of 22 °C ± 2. Medium containing 2 mg/l TDZ revealed the best regeneration efficiency with the three cultivars (72% for Festival, and 73% for Sweet Charly and Florida). After 4 weeks, the produced shoots were cultured on MS medium with different concentrations of BA and Kin to enhance shoot elongation. Results showed that the medium containing 1.5 mg/l BA and 0.5 mg/l Kin revealed highest elongation efficiency (88% and 94%) for Festival and Sweet Charly, respectively. On the other hand, medium containing 1.5 mg/l BA and 0.1 mg/l Kin showed highest elongation efficiency (90%) in Florida. Elongated shoots were successfully rooted on MS medium containing 1.5 mg/l NAA. Furthermore, transformation of the two cultivars, Festival and Sweet Charly, has been established via Agrobacterium strain LBA44404 containing the plasmid pISV2678 with gus-intron and bar genes. Three days post co-cultivation, GUS activity was screening using the histochemical assay. The results showed 16% and 18% of the tested plant materials has changed into blue color for Festival and Sweet Charly, respectively. Out of 120 explants only 13 shoots were developed on

  19. Isolated Teres Major Rupture: A case report with a suggested dedicated imaging protocol and review of the literature

    PubMed Central

    Fitzpatrick, Darren; Cagle, Paul; Flatow, Evan

    2016-01-01

    Isolated injuries to the teres major muscle occur in competitive sporting activities such as baseball pitching, hockey and tennis. We report a similar event of a physically fit man sustaining an isolated teres major rupture while waterskiing. Non-operative management was chosen, with pain resolution and no appreciable functional limitations at follow up. Because teres major muscle injury was suspected at the time of imaging, we present a dedicated imaging protocol to optimize assessment for teres major injury. PMID:27200170

  20. Isolating Spermathecae and Determining Mating Status of Drosophila suzukii: A Protocol for Tissue Dissection and Its Applications

    PubMed Central

    Avanesyan, Alina; Jaffe, Benjamin D.; Guédot, Christelle

    2017-01-01

    The spotted wing drosophila, Drosophila suzukii (Diptera: Drosophilidae), is an emerging invasive pest, which attacks a wide variety of fruits and berries. Although previous studies have focused on different aspects of D. suzukii reproductive biology, there are no protocols available for determining the mating status of D. suzukii females and drosophilids in general. In this study, a step-by-step protocol for tissue dissection, isolating spermathecae, and determining the mating status of females was developed specifically for D. suzukii. This protocol is an effective and relatively quick method for determining female mating status. It has important applications from exploring reproductive output of D. suzukii females to understanding the biology of D. suzukii winter morph, which presumably plays the main role in the overwintering of this invasive species. We demonstrated applicability of this protocol for both field collected flies and flies reared in the lab, including fly specimens stored on a long-term basis. PMID:28287438

  1. Improving International-Level Chess Players' Performance with an Acceptance-Based Protocol: Preliminary Findings

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Ruiz, Francisco J.; Luciano, Carmen

    2012-01-01

    This study compared an individual, 4-hr intervention based on acceptance and commitment therapy (ACT) versus a no-contact control condition in improving the performance of international-level chess players. Five participants received the brief ACT protocol, with each matched to another chess player with similar characteristics in the control…

  2. Substance Abuse Treatment And Family Therapy. A Treatment Improvement Protocol (TIP) Series 39

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Gilbert, Jonathan Max; Oliff, Helen; Sutton, David; Bartlett, Catalina; Henderson, Randi

    2004-01-01

    This Treatment Improvement Protocol (TIP) addresses substance abuse treatment in the context of family therapy. TIPs are best-practice guidelines for the treatment of substance use disorders that make the latest research in substance abuse treatment available to counselors and educators. The content was generated by a panel of experts in the…

  3. Substance Abuse Treatment: Group Therapy. Treatment Improvement Protocol (TIP) Series 41

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Gilbert, Jonathan Max; Hills, Susan; Rife, Mary Lou

    2005-01-01

    This Treatment Improvement Protocol (TIP) presents an overview of the role and efficacy of group therapy in substance abuse treatment. TIPs are best-practice guidelines for the treatment of substance use disorders that make the latest research in substance abuse treatment available to counselors and educators. The content was generated by a panel…

  4. Addressing Viral Hepatitis in People with Substance Use Disorders. Treatment Improvement Protocol (TIP) Series 53

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration, 2011

    2011-01-01

    Treatment Improvement Protocols (TIPs) are developed by the Center for Substance Abuse Treatment (CSAT), part of the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) within the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS). Each TIP involves the development of topic-specific best-practice guidelines for the prevention and…

  5. An improved protocol for the Pd-catalyzed alpha-arylation of aldehydes with aryl halides.

    PubMed

    Martín, Rubén; Buchwald, Stephen L

    2008-10-16

    An improved protocol for the Pd-catalyzed alpha-arylation of aldehydes with aryl halides has been developed. The new catalytic system allows for the coupling of an array of substrates including challenging electron-rich aryl bromides and less reactive aryl chlorides. The utility of this method has been demonstrated in a new total synthesis of (+/-)-sporochnol.

  6. Substance Abuse Treatment for Persons with Co-Occurring Disorders. Treatment Improvement Protocol (TIP) Series 42

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration, 2005

    2005-01-01

    Treatment Improvement Protocols (TIPs), developed by the Center for Substance Abuse Treatment (CSAT), part of the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) within the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS), are best-practice guidelines for the treatment of substance use disorders. CSAT draws on the experience…

  7. Substance Abuse Treatment For Adults in the Criminal Justice System. Treatment Improvement Protocol (TIP) Series 44

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Bartlett, Catalina; Dinsmore, Janet; Gilbert, J. Max; Kornblum, Annette; Latham, Joyce; Oliff, Helen; Paisner, Susan; Sutton, David

    2005-01-01

    This Treatment Improvement Protocol (TIP) provides guidelines for counselors and criminal justice personnel who treat offenders with substance use disorders. TIPs are best-practice guidelines that make the latest research in substance abuse treatment available to counselors and educators. The content was generated by a panel of experts in the…

  8. A Post-operative Feeding Protocol to Improve Outcomes for Neonates With Critical Congenital Heart Disease.

    PubMed

    Newcombe, Jennifer; Fry-Bowers, Eileen

    2017-01-04

    Neonates with critical congenital heart disease (CCHD) are vulnerable to malnutrition during the post-operative period due to hypermetabolism and hypercatabolism. To improve nutritional outcomes during hospitalization, a nurse led post-operative enteral feeding protocol was implemented at a large U.S. children's hospital. During an eight-month implementation period, twenty-one neonates met protocol inclusion criteria. Days for neonates to achieve goal caloric feedings (120kcal/kg/day) were decreased. A one-way repeated measures analysis of variance showed serum albumin levels and serial anthropometric measurements improved significantly throughout hospitalization (p<0.005). Results from this quality improvement project show standardizing nutritional care for neonates with CCHD during the post-operative period is an effective way to improve nutritional outcomes and shorten length of hospital stay.

  9. Protocol to cryopreserve and isolate nuclei from adipose tissue without dimethyl sulfoxide.

    PubMed

    Almeida, M M; Caires, L C J; Musso, C M; Campos, J M S; Maranduba, C M C; Macedo, G C; Mendonça, J P R F; Garcia, R M G

    2014-12-19

    Cryopreservation injuries involve nuclear DNA damage. A protocol for cryopreserving and isolating adipocyte nuclei is proposed. Adipose tissue samples were directly analyzed (NoCRYO-0h), or stored at -196°C for 7 days without 10% dimethyl sulfoxide (DMSO) (CRYO-WO-DMSO) or with DMSO (CRYO-W-DMSO). To determine the effect of DMSO on cryopreservation treatment, adipose tissue samples were stored at 4°C for 24 h with 10% DMSO (NoCRYO-W-DMSO-24h) and without (NoCRYO-WO-DMSO-24h). Samples were processed in isolation buffer, and nuclear integrity was measured by flow cytometry. The coefficient of variation, forward scatter, side scatter, and number of nuclei analyzed were evaluated. Pea (Pisum sativum) was used to measure the amount of DNA. All groups contained similar amounts of DNA to previously reported values and a satisfactory number of nuclei were analyzed. CRYO-W-DMSO presented a higher coefficient of variation (3.19 ± 0.09) compared to NoCRYO-0h (1.85 ± 0.09) and CRYO-WO-DMSO (2.02 ± 0.02). The coefficient of variation was increased in NoCRYO-W-DMSO-24h (3.80 ± 0.01) compared to NoCRYO-WO-DMSO-24h (2.46 ± 0.03). These results relate DMSO presence to DNA damage independently of the cryopreservation process. CRYO-W-DMSO showed increased side scatter (93.46 ± 5.03) compared to NoCRYO-0h (41.13 ± 3.19) and CRYO-WO-DMSO (48.01 ± 2.28), indicating that cryopreservation with DMSO caused chromatin condensation and/or nuclear fragmentation. CRYO-W-DMSO and CRYO-WO-DMSO presented lower forward scatter (186.33 ± 9.33 and 196.89 ± 26.86, respectively) compared to NoCRYO-0h (322.80 ± 3.36), indicating that cryopreservation reduced nuclei size. Thus, a simple method for cryopreservation and isolation of adipocyte nuclei causing less damage to DNA integrity was proposed.

  10. Protocols for Improvement of Black Pepper (Piper nigrum L.) Utilizing Biotechnological Tools.

    PubMed

    Nirmal Babu, K; Divakaran, Minoo; Yamuna, G; Ravindran, P N; Peter, K V

    2016-01-01

    Black pepper, Piper nigrum L., the "King of spices" is the most widely used spice growing in the South-Western region of India. The humid tropical evergreen forest bordering the Malabar Coast (Western Ghats is one of the hot spot areas of plant bio-diversity on earth) is its center of origin and diversity. However, the crop faces constraints like rampant fungal and viral diseases, lack of disease free planting material, hence biotechnological tools can be utilized to address these problems and strides have been made successfully. The standardization of micropropagation, somatic embryogenesis, in vitro conservation, protoplast isolation, and genetic transformation protocols are described here. The protocols could be utilized to achieve similar goals in the related species of Piper too.

  11. An improved authenticated key agreement protocol for telecare medicine information system.

    PubMed

    Liu, Wenhao; Xie, Qi; Wang, Shengbao; Hu, Bin

    2016-01-01

    In telecare medicine information systems (TMIS), identity authentication of patients plays an important role and has been widely studied in the research field. Generally, it is realized by an authenticated key agreement protocol, and many such protocols were proposed in the literature. Recently, Zhang et al. pointed out that Islam et al.'s protocol suffers from the following security weaknesses: (1) Any legal but malicious patient can reveal other user's identity; (2) An attacker can launch off-line password guessing attack and the impersonation attack if the patient's identity is compromised. Zhang et al. also proposed an improved authenticated key agreement scheme with privacy protection for TMIS. However, in this paper, we point out that Zhang et al.'s scheme cannot resist off-line password guessing attack, and it fails to provide the revocation of lost/stolen smartcard. In order to overcome these weaknesses, we propose an improved protocol, the security and authentication of which can be proven using applied pi calculus based formal verification tool ProVerif.

  12. Efficient protocol for isolation and purification of different soyasaponins from soy hypocotyls.

    PubMed

    Zhao, Dayun; Yan, Mingxia; Huang, Yuai; Sun, Xiangjun

    2012-12-01

    Soyasaponins are naturally occurring triterpenoid glycosides associated with many biological activities. The aim of the present study was to develop an effective method for isolation and purification of differently glycosylated, acetylated, and 2,3-dihydro-2,5-dihydroxy-6-methyl-4H-pyran-4-one (DDMP)-conjugated soyasaponins from soy hypocotyls. Both gel filtration using Sephadex LH-20 chromatography (Amersham Pharmacia Biotech AB; elution phase: methanol, flow rate: 3.0 mL/min, sample loading: 60 mg) and high-speed countercurrent chromatography (stationary phase: n-butanol-acetic acid (5.0%, v/v), mobile phase: water flow rate: 3.0 mL/min, sample loading: 100 mg) could effectively fractionate isoflavones and soyasaponins from the crude extract with yield of soyasaponin complexes 20.5 mg and 22.3 mg, respectively. After fractionation, the soyasaponin complexes could be purified further using preparative HPLC to separate individuals. A total of nine soyasaponins, triacetyl soyasaponin Ab (yield 1.55%, HPLC purity >98%), Aa (2.68%, >99%), Ab (18.53%, >98%), Ae (0.85%, >98%), Ba (0.63%, >91%), Af (1.12%, >85%), Bb (3.45%, >98%) and Be (0.59%, >76.8%) were obtained. DDMP-conjugated groups, αg (2.06%, >85%), βg (7.59%, >85%), and γg (0.29%, >85%) that were very labile even in mild conditions, were also collected. The method described here can be used as an effective protocol to separate different soyasaponins occurring in the original sample.

  13. A Reliable Protocol for the Isolation of Viable, Chondrogenically Differentiated Human Mesenchymal Stem Cells from High-Density Pellet Cultures

    PubMed Central

    Ullah, Mujib; Hamouda, Houda; Stich, Stefan; Sittinger, Michael

    2012-01-01

    Abstract Administration of chondrogenically differentiated mesenchymal stem cells (MSC) is discussed as a promising approach for the regenerative treatment of injured or diseased cartilage. The high-density pellet culture is the standard culture for chondrogenic differentiation, but cells in pellets secrete extracellular matrix (ECM) that they become entrapped in. Protocols for cell isolation from pellets often result in cell damage and dedifferentiation towards less differentiated MSC. Therefore, our aim was to develop a reliable protocol for the isolation of viable, chondrogenically differentiated MSC from high-density pellet cultures. Human bone marrow MSC were chondrogenically stimulated with transforming growth factor-β3, and the cartilaginous structure of the pellets was verified by alcian blue staining of cartilage proteoglycans, antibody staining of cartilage collagen type II, and quantitative real-time reverse-transcription polymerase chain reaction of the marker genes COL2A1 and SOX9. Trypsin and collagenases II and P were tested alone or in combination, and for different concentrations and times, to find a protocol for optimized pellet digestion. Whereas trypsin was not able to release viable cells, 90-min digestion with 300 U of collagenase II, 20 U of collagenase P, and 2 mM CaCl2 worked quite well and resulted in about 2.5×105 cells/pellet. The protocol was further optimized for the separation of released cells and ECM from each other. Cells were alcian blue and collagen type II positive and expressed COL2A1 and SOX9, verifying a chondrogenic character. However, they had different morphological shapes. The ECM was also uniformly alcian blue and collagen type II positive but showed different organizational and structural forms. To conclude, our protocol allows the reliable isolation of a defined number of viable, chondrogenically differentiated MSC from high-density pellet cultures. Such cells, as well as the ECM components, are of interest as

  14. Protocol to Isolate a Large Amount of Functional Oligodendrocyte Precursor Cells from the Cerebral Cortex of Adult Mice and Humans

    PubMed Central

    Medina-Rodríguez, Eva María; Arenzana, Francisco Javier; Bribián, Ana; de Castro, Fernando

    2013-01-01

    During development, oligodendrocytes are generated from oligodendrocyte precursor cells (OPCs), a cell type that is a significant proportion of the total cells (3-8%) in the adult central nervous system (CNS) of both rodents and humans. Adult OPCs are responsible for the spontaneous remyelination that occurs in demyelinating diseases like Multiple Sclerosis (MS) and they constitute an interesting source of cells for regenerative therapy in such conditions. However, there is little data regarding the neurobiology of adult OPCs isolated from mice since an efficient method to isolate them has yet to be established. We have designed a protocol to obtain viable adult OPCs from the cerebral cortex of different mouse strains and we have compared its efficiency with other well-known methods. In addition, we show that this protocol is also useful to isolate functional OPCs from human brain biopsies. Using this method we can isolate primary cortical OPCs in sufficient quantities so as to be able to study their survival, maturation and function, and to facilitate an evaluation of their utility in myelin repair. PMID:24303061

  15. A protocol for exosome isolation and characterization: evaluation of ultracentrifugation, density-gradient separation, and immunoaffinity capture methods.

    PubMed

    Greening, David W; Xu, Rong; Ji, Hong; Tauro, Bow J; Simpson, Richard J

    2015-01-01

    Exosomes are 40-150 nm extracellular vesicles that are released from a multitude of cell types, and perform diverse cellular functions including intercellular communication, antigen presentation, and transfer of tumorigenic proteins, mRNA and miRNA. Exosomes are important regulators of the cellular niche, and their altered characteristics in many diseases, such as cancer, suggest their importance for diagnostic and therapeutic applications, and as drug delivery vehicles. Exosomes have been purified from biological fluids and in vitro cell cultures using a variety of strategies and techniques. In this chapter, we reveal the protocol and key insights into the isolation, purification and characterization of exosomes, distinct from shed microvesicles and apoptotic blebs. Using the colorectal cancer cell line LIM1863 as a cell model, a comprehensive evaluation of exosome isolation methods including ultracentrifugation (UC-Exos), OptiPrep™ density-based separation (DG-Exos), and immunoaffinity capture using anti-EpCAM-coated magnetic beads (IAC-Exos) were examined. All exosome isolation methodologies contained 40-150 nm vesicles based on electron microscopy, and positive for exosome markers (Alix, TSG101, HSP70) based on immunoblotting. This protocol employed a proteomic profiling approach to characterize the protein composition of exosomes, and label-free spectral counting to evaluate the effectiveness of each method in exosome isolation. Based on the number of MS/MS spectra identified for exosome markers and proteins associated with their biogenesis, trafficking, and release, IAC-Exos was shown to be the most effective method to isolate exosomes. However, the use of density-based separation (DG-Exos) provides significant advantages for exosome isolation when the use of immunoaffinity capture is limited (due to antibody availability and suitability of exosome markers).

  16. Protocol for Isolation of Primary Human Hepatocytes and Corresponding Major Populations of Non-parenchymal Liver Cells.

    PubMed

    Kegel, Victoria; Deharde, Daniela; Pfeiffer, Elisa; Zeilinger, Katrin; Seehofer, Daniel; Damm, Georg

    2016-03-30

    Beside parenchymal hepatocytes, the liver consists of non-parenchymal cells (NPC) namely Kupffer cells (KC), liver endothelial cells (LEC) and hepatic Stellate cells (HSC). Two-dimensional (2D) culture of primary human hepatocyte (PHH) is still considered as the "gold standard" for in vitro testing of drug metabolism and hepatotoxicity. It is well-known that the 2D monoculture of PHH suffers from dedifferentiation and loss of function. Recently it was shown that hepatic NPC play a central role in liver (patho-) physiology and the maintenance of PHH functions. Current research focuses on the reconstruction of in vivo tissue architecture by 3D- and co-culture models to overcome the limitations of 2D monocultures. Previously we published a method to isolate human liver cells and investigated the suitability of these cells for their use in cell cultures in Experimental Biology and Medicine(1). Based on the broad interest in this technique the aim of this article was to provide a more detailed protocol for the liver cell isolation process including a video, which will allow an easy reproduction of this technique. Human liver cells were isolated from human liver tissue samples of surgical interventions by a two-step EGTA/collagenase P perfusion technique. PHH were separated from the NPC by an initial centrifugation at 50 x g. Density gradient centrifugation steps were used for removal of dead cells. Individual liver cell populations were isolated from the enriched NPC fraction using specific cell properties and cell sorting procedures. Beside the PHH isolation we were able to separate KC, LEC and HSC for further cultivation. Taken together, the presented protocol allows the isolation of PHH and NPC in high quality and quantity from one donor tissue sample. The access to purified liver cell populations could allow the creation of in vivo like human liver models.

  17. Impact of cell lines included in enterovirus isolation protocol on perception of nonpolio enterovirus species C diversity.

    PubMed

    Adeniji, Johnson Adekunle; Faleye, Temitope Oluwasegun Cephas

    2014-10-01

    There has been under-reporting of nonpolio enterovirus species Cs (NPESCs) in Nigeria despite the fact that most isolates recovered from the Nigerian vaccine derived poliovirus serotype 2 (VDPV2) outbreak were recombinants with nonstructural region of NPESC origin. It has been suggested that cell lines included in enterovirus isolation protocols might account for this phenomenon and this study examined this suggestion. Fifteen environmental samples concentrated previously and analysed using L20B and RD cell lines as part of the poliovirus environmental surveillance (ES) program in Nigeria were randomly selected and inoculated into two cell lines (MCF-7 and LLC-MK2). Isolates were identified as enteroviruses and species C members using different RT-PCR assays, culture in L20B cell line and sequencing of partial VP1. Forty-eight (48) isolates were recovered from the 15 samples, 47 (97.9%) of which were enteroviruses. Of the enteroviruses, 32 (68.1%) belonged to enterovirus species C (EC) of which 19 (40.4%) were polioviruses and 13 (27.7%) were NPESC members. All 13 NPESC isolates were recovered on MCF-7. Results of the study show that NPESCs are circulating in Nigeria and their under-reporting was due to the combination of cell lines used for enterovirus isolation in previous reports.

  18. An Improved Quantum Information Hiding Protocol Based on Entanglement Swapping of χ-type Quantum States

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Xu, Shu-Jiang; Chen, Xiu-Bo; Wang, Lian-Hai; Ding, Qing-Yan; Zhang, Shu-Hui

    2016-06-01

    In 2011, Qu et al. proposed a quantum information hiding protocol based on the entanglement swapping of χ-type quantum states. Because a χ-type state can be described by the 4-particle cat states which have good symmetry, the possible output results of the entanglement swapping between a given χ-type state and all of the 16 χ-type states are divided into 8 groups instead of 16 groups of different results when the global phase is not considered. So it is difficult to read out the secret messages since each result occurs twice in each line (column) of the secret messages encoding rule for the original protocol. In fact, a 3-bit instead of a 4-bit secret message can be encoded by performing two unitary transformations on 2 particles of a χ-type quantum state in the original protocol. To overcome this defect, we propose an improved quantum information hiding protocol based on the general term formulas of the entanglement swapping among χ-type states. Supported by the National Natural Science Foundation of China under Grant Nos. 61572297, 61303199, 61272514, and 61373131, the Shandong Provincial Natural Science Foundation of China under Grant Nos. ZR2013FM025, ZR2013FQ001, ZR2014FM003, and ZY2015YL018, the Shandong Provincial Outstanding Research Award Fund for Young Scientists of China under Grant Nos. BS2015DX006 and BS2014DX007, the National Development Foundation for Cryptological Research, China under Grant No. MMJJ201401012, the Priority Academic Program Development of Jiangsu Higher Education Institutions and Jiangsu Collaborative Innovation Center on Atmospheric Environment and Equipment Technology Funds, and the Shandong Academy of Sciences Youth Fund Project, China under Grant Nos. 2015QN003 and 2013QN007

  19. Treatment Protocols to Reduce Injury and Improve Stone Breakage in SWL

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    McAteer, James A.; Evan, Andrew P.; Connors, Bret A.; Pishchalnikov, Yuri A.; Williams, James C.; Lingeman, James E.

    2008-09-01

    Here we provide a capsule summary of key observations showing that adverse effects can be reduced and stone breakage outcomes can be improved by the choice of the treatment protocol used in SWL. The take home message is—technique in lithotripsy can be used to significant advantage. SW-rate is key, and so is the sequence of SW delivery. Patient studies have shown that stone breakage is significantly improved at 60SW/min compared to a rate of 120SW/min, and laboratory experiments with pigs show that acute SWL injury to the kidney can be reduced dramatically by further slowing the SW firing rate to 30SW/min. The sequence of SW administration has a profound effect on the kidney, and renal injury is significantly reduced when the treatment protocol incorporates a priming dose of SW's followed by a brief pause before treatment is resumed. Continued developments in lithotripsy technology are welcome and will hopefully lead to improved SWL systems. Current experience suggests, however, that technology is not a substitute for expert technique, and attention to the fundamentals of SW delivery is essential to achieve the best possible outcomes regardless of the lithotripter at hand.

  20. Rate allocation protocol using competitive pricing for improving performance of multicast sessions

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Levy, Zohar; Dolev, Danny

    1998-10-01

    Rate allocation using the Max-Min fairness criterion may highly discriminate against multicast and long unicast sessions and may lead to sever network underutilization. In this paper, we present a solution for rate allocation that is based on competitive pricing. The resultant allocation increases fairness towards multicast sessions and improves network utilization considerably. The solution requires no re-routing of sessions. The economy on which we base our solution is simple enough, enabling its implementation for practical use. We present a distributed asynchronous protocol suitable for the ATM ABR service, which achieves the economy's allocation efficiently and with short convergence time.

  1. New ruthenium-based protocol for cleavage of terminal olefins to primary alcohols: improved synthesis of a bicyclic nucleoside.

    PubMed

    Sharma, Pawan K; Nielsen, Poul

    2004-08-20

    A new protocol for the oxidative cleavage of terminal alkenes to give exclusively primary alcohols in high yields is introduced. The protocol is based on RuO4-mediated dihydroxylation, NaIO4-mediated diol cleavage, and NaBH4-mediated reduction, but the introduction of a reducing step before the diol cleavage removes the formation of byproducts and improves the yield significantly. The new protocol has been developed and used for the improved preparation of a [3.2.0]bicycloarabinonucleoside with important potential in antisense and antigene technology.

  2. Does the presence of a condition-specific obstetric protocol lead to detectable improvements in pregnancy outcomes?

    PubMed Central

    Bailit, Jennifer L.; Grobman, William; McGee, Paula; Reddy, Uma M.; Wapner, Ronald J.; Varner, Michael W.; Thorp, John M.; Leveno, Kenneth J.; Iams, Jay D.; Tita, Alan T. N.; Saade, George; Sorokin, Yoram; Rouse, Dwight J.; Blackwell, Sean C.

    2015-01-01

    Objective To evaluate whether the presence of condition-specific obstetric protocols within a hospital was associated with better maternal and neonatal outcomes. Study Design Cohort study of a random sample of deliveries performed at 25 hospitals over three years. Condition-specific protocols were collected from all hospitals and categorized independently by two authors. Data on maternal and neonatal outcomes, as well as data necessary for risk adjustment were collected. Risk-adjusted outcomes were compared according to whether the patient delivered in a hospital with condition-specific obstetric protocols at the time of delivery. Results Hemorrhage-specific protocols were not associated with a lower rate of postpartum hemorrhage or with fewer cases of EBL >1000cc. Similarly, in the presence of a shoulder dystocia protocol, there were no differences in the frequency of shoulder dystocia or number of shoulder dystocia maneuvers used. Conversely, preeclampsia-specific protocols were associated with fewer ICU admissions (OR 0.28, 95% CI 0.18–0.44) and fewer cases of severe maternal hypertension (OR 0.86, 95% CI 0.77–0.96). Conclusion The presence of condition-specific obstetric protocols was not consistently shown to be associated with improved risk-adjusted outcomes. Our study would suggest that the presence or absence of a protocol does not matter and regulations to require protocols are not fruitful. PMID:25659468

  3. Development of an improved vaccine evaluation protocol to compare the efficacy of Newcastle disease vaccines.

    PubMed

    Cardenas-Garcia, Stivalis; Diel, Diego G; Susta, Leonardo; Lucio-Decanini, Eduardo; Yu, Qingzhong; Brown, Corrie C; Miller, Patti J; Afonso, Claudio L

    2015-03-01

    While there is typically 100% survivability in birds challenged with vNDV under experimental conditions, either with vaccines formulated with a strain homologous or heterologous (different genotype) to the challenge virus, vaccine deficiencies are often noted in the field. We have developed an improved and more stringent protocol to experimentally evaluate live NDV vaccines, and showed for the first time under experimental conditions that a statistically significant reduction in mortality can be detected with genotype matched vaccines. Using both vaccine evaluation protocols (traditional and improved), birds were challenged with a vNDV of genotype XIII and the efficacy of live heterologous (genotype II) and homologous (genotype XIII) NDV vaccines was compared. Under traditional vaccination conditions there were no differences in survival upon challenge, but the homologous vaccine induced significantly higher levels of antibodies specific to the challenge virus. With the more stringent challenge system (multiple vaccine doses and early challenge with high titers of vNDV), the birds administered the homologous vaccine had superior humoral responses, reduced clinical signs, and reduced mortality levels than those vaccinated with the heterologous vaccine. These results provide basis for the implementation of more sensitive methods to evaluate vaccine efficacy.

  4. A Standardized Shift Handover Protocol: Improving Nurses’ Safe Practice in Intensive Care Units

    PubMed Central

    Malekzadeh, Javad; Mazluom, Seyed Reza; Etezadi, Toktam; Tasseri, Alireza

    2013-01-01

    Introduction: For maintaining the continuity of care and improving the quality of care, effective inter-shift information communication is necessary. Any handover error can endanger patient safety. Despite the importance of shift handover, there is no standard handover protocol in our healthcare settings. Methods: In this one-group pretest-posttest quasi-experimental study conducted in spring and summer of 2011, we recruited a convenience sample of 56 ICU nurses. The Nurses’ Safe Practice Evaluation Checklist was used for data collection. The Content Validity Index and the inter-rater correlation coefficient of the checklist was 0.92 and 89, respectively. We employed the SPSS 11.5 software and the Mc Nemar and paired-samples t test for data analysis. Results: Study findings revealed that nurses’ mean score on the Safe Practice Evaluation Checklist increased significantly from 11.6 (2.7) to 17.0 (1.8) (P < 0.001). Conclusion: using a standard handover protocol for communicating patient’s needs and information improves nurses’ safe practice in the area of basic nursing care. PMID:25276725

  5. Development and validation of a PulseNet standardized protocol for subtyping isolates of Cronobacter species.

    PubMed

    Brengi, Silvina P; O'Brien, Stephen B; Pichel, Mariana; Iversen, Carol; Arduino, Matthew; Binsztein, Norma; Jensen, Bette; Pagotto, Franco; Ribot, Efrain M; Stephan, Roger; Cernela, Nicole; Cooper, Kara; Fanning, Séamus

    2012-09-01

    Cronobacter (formerly known as Enterobacter sakazakii) is a genus comprising seven species regarded as opportunistic pathogens that can be found in a wide variety of environments and foods, including powdered infant formula (PIF). Cronobacter sakazakii, the major species of this genus, has been epidemiologically linked to cases of bacteremia, meningitis in neonates, and necrotizing enterocolitis, and contaminated PIF has been identified as an important source of infection. Robust and reproducible subtyping methods are required to aid in the detection and investigation, of foodborne outbreaks. In this study, a pulsed-field gel electrophoresis (PFGE) protocol was developed and validated for subtyping Cronobacter species. It was derived from an existing modified PulseNet protocol, wherein XbaI and SpeI were the primary and secondary restriction enzymes used, generating an average of 14.7 and 20.3 bands, respectively. The PFGE method developed was both reproducible and discriminatory for subtyping Cronobacter species.

  6. Using shadow page cache to improve isolated drivers performance.

    PubMed

    Zheng, Hao; Dong, Xiaoshe; Wang, Endong; Chen, Baoke; Zhu, Zhengdong; Liu, Chengzhe

    2015-01-01

    With the advantage of the reusability property of the virtualization technology, users can reuse various types and versions of existing operating systems and drivers in a virtual machine, so as to customize their application environment. In order to prevent users' virtualization environments being impacted by driver faults in virtual machine, Chariot examines the correctness of driver's write operations by the method of combining a driver's write operation capture and a driver's private access control table. However, this method needs to keep the write permission of shadow page table as read-only, so as to capture isolated driver's write operations through page faults, which adversely affect the performance of the driver. Based on delaying setting frequently used shadow pages' write permissions to read-only, this paper proposes an algorithm using shadow page cache to improve the performance of isolated drivers and carefully study the relationship between the performance of drivers and the size of shadow page cache. Experimental results show that, through the shadow page cache, the performance of isolated drivers can be greatly improved without impacting Chariot's reliability too much.

  7. The protocol for the isolation and cryopreservation of osteoclast precursors from mouse bone marrow and spleen.

    PubMed

    Boraschi-Diaz, Iris; Komarova, Svetlana V

    2016-01-01

    Osteoclasts are responsible for physiological bone remodeling as well as pathological bone destruction in osteoporosis, periodontitis and rheumatoid arthritis, and thus represent a pharmacological target for drug development. We aimed to characterize and compare the cytokine-induced osteoclastogenesis of bone marrow and spleen precursors. Established protocols used to generate osteoclasts from bone marrow were modified to examine osteoclastogenesis of the spleen cells of healthy mice. Osteoclast formation was successfully induced from spleen precursors using receptor activator of nuclear factor κB ligand (50 ng/ml) and macrophage colony stimulating factor (50 ng/ml). Compared to bone marrow cultures, differentiation from spleen required a longer cultivation time (9 days for spleen, as compared to 5 days for marrow cultures) and a higher plating density of non-adherent cells (75,000/cm(2) for spleen, as compared to 50,000/cm(2) for bone marrow). Osteoclasts generated from spleen precursors expressed osteoclast marker genes calcitonin receptor, cathepsin K and matrix metalloproteinase 9 and were capable of resorbing hydroxyapatite. The differentiation capacity of spleen and bone marrow precursors was comparable for BALB/c, C57BL/6 and FVB mice. We also developed and tested a cryopreservation protocol for the osteoclast precursors. While 70-80 % of cells were lost during the first week of freezing, during the subsequent 5 weeks the losses were within 2-5 % per week. Osteoclastogenesis from the recovered bone marrow precursors was successful up to 5 weeks after freezing. Spleen precursors retained their osteoclastogenic capacity for 1 week after freezing, but not thereafter. The described protocol is useful for the studies of genetically modified animals as well as for screening new osteoclast-targeting therapeutics.

  8. An improved method of isolating fetal human retinal pigment epithelium.

    PubMed

    Castillo, B V; Little, C W; del Cerro, C; del Cerro, M

    1995-08-01

    The purpose of this study was to develop an improved method of isolating fetal human retinal pigment epithelium (RPE) for tissue culture or transplantation. Fetal human eyes ranging from 8 to 20 wks of gestation were collected and stored in Optisol solution. Under a dissecting microscope, an incision was made behind the ora serrata and extended circumferentially to remove the anterior segment. The vitreous was withdrawn, and the neural retina was carefully detached from the RPE. The sclera then was teased away from the choroid-RPE. The choroid-RPE was treated with 2% dispase in DMEM + 20 mM HEPES at 37 degrees C for 25 min. While still in dispase, the RPE was separated from the choroid using a pair of fine tipped jeweler's forceps under dark-field. An intact sheet of RPE could be separated from the choroid after treatment with dispase. No choroidal contamination was present as determined by light microscopy or cell culture. In vitro, the isolated RPE cells demonstrated classic cobblestone phenotype and expressed cytokeratin. This technique provides an easy and reliable method for isolating pure sheets of fetal human RPE. It also allows utilization of the neural retina of the same eye for other purposes, as the neural retina is not exposed to the enzymatic digestion. These features make this method especially useful for RPE and retinal transplantation; such an application is already underway.

  9. Improved selective medium for the isolation of Treponema hyodysenteriae.

    PubMed Central

    Kunkle, R A; Kinyon, J M

    1988-01-01

    An agar medium with improved selection for Treponema hyodysenteriae was developed. Cultures of T. hyodysenteriae and T. innocens, feces from 11 clinically normal pigs, and colonic contents from 6 pigs with gross lesions consistent with swine dysentery were diluted in phosphate-buffered saline and plated on Trypticase soy agar (BBL Microbiology Systems, Cockeysville, Md.) with 5% citrated bovine blood (TSA), TSA with 400 micrograms of spectinomycin per ml (TSA-S400), TSA-S400 with 25 micrograms each of colistin and vancomycin per ml, and TSA with 5% pig feces extract and five antimicrobial agents (spiramycin, rifampin, vancomycin, colistin, and spectinomycin) (BJ). Viable numbers of T. hydodysenteriae grown on BJ were virtually identical to those for TSA, TSA-S400, and TSA-S400 with colistin and vancomycin. Pure cultures of four isolates of T. hyodysenteriae and three isolates of T. innocens were sustained through six subcultures on BJ. Fecal floras were completely inhibited on BJ for 14 of 17 fecal samples from both groups of pigs. A total of 461 colonic specimens from naturally occurring cases of porcine intestinal disease were plated on TSA-S400 and BJ. T. hyodysenteriae was isolated on both TSA-S400 and BJ for 69 specimens and on BJ alone for an additional 19 specimens. PMID:3235663

  10. Cryptanalysis and Improvement for the Quantum Private Comparison Protocol Based on Triplet Entangled State and Single-Particle Measurement

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ting, Xu; Tian-Yu, Ye

    2017-03-01

    Quantum private comparison (QPC) aims to accomplish the equality comparison of secret inputs from two users on the basis of not leaking their contents out. Recently, Chen et al. proposed the QPC protocol based on triplet GHZ state and single-particle measurement (Optics Communications 283, 1561-1565 (2010)). In this paper, they suggested the standard model of a semi-honest third party (TP) for the first time, and declared that their protocol is secure. Subsequently, Lin et al. pointed out that in Chen et al.'s protocol, one user can extract the other user's secret without being discovered by performing the intercept-resend attack, and suggested two corresponding improvements (Optics Communications 284, 2412-2414 (2011)). However, Yang et al. first pointed out that the model of TP adopted by both Chen et al.'s protocol and Lin et al.'s improved protocols is unreasonable, and thought that a practical TP may also try any possible means to steal the users' secrets except being corrupted by the adversary including the dishonest user (Quantum Inf Process 12, 877-885 (2013). In this paper, after taking the possible attacks from TP into account, we propose the eavesdropping strategy of TP toward Lin et al.'s improved protocols and suggest two feasible solutions accordingly.

  11. Gene fishing: the use of a simple protocol to isolate multiple homeodomain classes from diverse invertebrate taxa.

    PubMed

    Lee, Shannon E; Gates, Ruth D; Jacobs, David K

    2003-04-01

    Comparison of relevant gene sequence and functional data is central to understanding the evolution of metazoan development. The conservation of portions of regulatory genes, such as homeoboxes, allows for the design of PCR-based sequence isolation and amplification strategies. Here we describe a simple protocol that uses a degenerate primer pair to isolate a variety of homeobox-containing genes from diverse metazoan taxa. In a nonexhaustive survey, we have isolated 28 gene sequence fragments from 15 taxa, representing eight invertebrate phyla (Mollusca, Echiura, Annelida, Platyhelminth, Acoela, Ctenophora, Cnidaria, and Porifera). Based on BLAST and parsimony analyses, these gene fragments affiliate with several gene groups (PAIRED-like, HOX, and ParaHOX) and several single genes, including pancreas/duodenum homeoboxes (Pdx), empty spiracles (ems/Emx), gastrulation brain homeoboxes (Gbx), hematopoietically expressed homeoboxes (HEX), brain specific homeobox (bsh/BarH1/BarH2), NK-1 (NK-1/s59/slouch), and ladybird (Lbl/Lbe/Lbx). In several cases, these fragments represent the first reported orthologue for the phylum or superphyletic group (i.e., Lophotrochozoa).

  12. Fluorescence-Activated Cell Sorting (FACS) Protocol for Podocyte Isolation in Adult Zebrafish.

    PubMed

    Bates, Thomas J D; Naumann, Uta; Englert, Christoph

    2016-01-01

    Zebrafish is becoming a very important model for studying human diseases. The conserved structure of the nephrons in the kidney allows the user to answer questions relating to study human kidney disorders. Wt1a-expressing podocytes are the most important cells within the glomeruli of adult zebrafish. In order to understand the molecular characteristics of these cells, within damage models, we have established a method for isolating them.

  13. Improving the efficiency of single and multiple teleportation protocols based on the direct use of partially entangled states

    SciTech Connect

    Fortes, Raphael; Rigolin, Gustavo

    2013-09-15

    We push the limits of the direct use of partially pure entangled states to perform quantum teleportation by presenting several protocols in many different scenarios that achieve the optimal efficiency possible. We review and put in a single formalism the three major strategies known to date that allow one to use partially entangled states for direct quantum teleportation (no distillation strategies permitted) and compare their efficiencies in real world implementations. We show how one can improve the efficiency of many direct teleportation protocols by combining these techniques. We then develop new teleportation protocols employing multipartite partially entangled states. The three techniques are also used here in order to achieve the highest efficiency possible. Finally, we prove the upper bound for the optimal success rate for protocols based on partially entangled Bell states and show that some of the protocols here developed achieve such a bound. -- Highlights: •Optimal direct teleportation protocols using directly partially entangled states. •We put in a single formalism all strategies of direct teleportation. •We extend these techniques for multipartite partially entangle states. •We give upper bounds for the optimal efficiency of these protocols.

  14. New protocol for the isolation of nitrocellulose from gunpowders: utility in their identification.

    PubMed

    López-López, María; de la Ossa, María Angeles Fernández; Galindo, Jorge Sáiz; Ferrando, Jose Luis; Vega, Alfonso; Torre, Mercedes; García-Ruiz, Carmen

    2010-06-15

    In this work, a new approach for the isolation of nitrocellulose from smokeless gunpowders has been developed. A multistep solvent extraction method was needed to purify nitrocellulose contained in gunpowders. For single-base or double-base gunpowders six consecutive solvent extractions were selected: three extractions with methanol (to remove nitroglycerin, 2,4-dinitrotoluene, ethyl-centralite, diphenylamine, and diphenylamine derivatives); one extraction with dichloromethane (to remove colorants and plasticizers of organic nature); one extraction with methanol (to facilitate a final polar extraction); and one extraction with water (to remove ionic components) were necessary at 35 degrees C. For the triple-base gunpowder studied, eight solvent extractions were needed due to a high concentration of the water-soluble nitroguanidine was present. In addition to the same five initial phases used for the single-base and double-base gunpowders, three water extraction phases at a higher temperature (75 degrees C instead of 35 degrees C) were also needed. A final step to solubilize nitrocellulose in methyl ethyl ketone was used to remove inert components (mainly graphite). Nitrocellulose isolated from these propellants was characterized by Fourier-Transformed Infrared Spectroscopy (FTIR spectroscopy). The same FTIR spectra were observed for nitrocelluloses isolated from different types of gunpowders. A comparison of FTIR spectra of nitrocellulose samples of different nitration degree evidenced that the bands regions most affected by this factor were: 3600-3400cm(-1), corresponding to the stretching vibrations of residual hydroxyl groups; 1200-1000cm(-1), attributed to the valence vibrations nuCO of the glucopyranose cycle; and 750-690cm(-1), assigned to vibrations of the nitrate group. In both cases, the bands appearing in these regions were more pronounced in the spectra of nitrocellulose samples of low nitration degree.

  15. Isolating the Unique Effects of the Unified Protocol Treatment Modules Using Single Case Experimental Design.

    PubMed

    Sauer-Zavala, Shannon; Cassiello-Robbins, Clair; Conklin, Laren R; Bullis, Jacqueline R; Thompson-Hollands, Johanna; Kennedy, Katherine A

    2017-03-01

    The Unified Protocol (UP) for the Transdiagnostic Treatment of Emotional Disorders is a cognitive-behavioral intervention designed to treat the range of anxiety, depressive, and related disorders. Thus far, the UP treatment modules have only been studied when they are delivered in their entirety and presented in a standard sequence. To personalize the presentation of the UP modules for a given patient's presentation (e.g., providing the modules in a varied order, dropping irrelevant modules), it is first necessary to establish that each module leads to change in the skill it is designed to promote, and that these changes can occur in the absence of the other modules. Using a multiple baseline design in accordance with the single-case reporting guidelines in behavioral interventions (SCRIBE), eight patients with heterogeneous emotional disorders were randomly assigned to a 1- or 3-week baseline assessment phase followed by four sessions of one of four UP modules (psychoeducation, emotional awareness, cognitive flexibility, and countering emotional behaviors). Results provide preliminary support for the notion that each UP module under study leads to change in its associated skill in the absence of the other modules (five of eight patients demonstrated reliable change in the module-specific skill). In addition, exploratory analyses suggest that the emotion awareness training and cognitive flexibility modules appeared to exhibit change specific to their associated skills, psychoeducation, and countering emotional behaviors demonstrated somewhat more broad-based change across skills.

  16. Learning from positively deviant wards to improve patient safety: an observational study protocol

    PubMed Central

    Baxter, Ruth; Taylor, Natalie; Kellar, Ian; Lawton, Rebecca

    2015-01-01

    Introduction Positive deviance is an asset-based approach to improvement which has recently been adopted to improve quality and safety within healthcare. The approach assumes that solutions to problems already exist within communities. Certain groups or individuals identify these solutions and succeed despite having the same resources as others. Within healthcare, positive deviance has previously been applied at individual or organisational levels to improve specific clinical outcomes or processes of care. This study explores whether the positive deviance approach can be applied to multidisciplinary ward teams to address the broad issue of patient safety among elderly patients. Methods and analysis Preliminary work analysed National Health Service (NHS) Safety Thermometer data from 34 elderly medical wards to identify 5 ‘positively deviant’ and 5 matched ‘comparison’ wards. Researchers are blinded to ward status. This protocol describes a multimethod, observational study which will (1) assess the concurrent validity of identifying positively deviant elderly medical wards using NHS Safety Thermometer data and (2) generate hypotheses about how positively deviant wards succeed. Patient and staff perceptions of safety will be assessed on each ward using validated surveys. Correlation and ranking analyses will explore whether this survey data aligns with the routinely collected NHS Safety Thermometer data. Staff focus groups and researcher fieldwork diaries will be completed and qualitative thematic content analysis will be used to generate hypotheses about the strategies, behaviours, team cultures and dynamics that facilitate the delivery of safe patient care. The acceptability and sustainability of strategies identified will also be explored. Ethics and dissemination The South East Scotland Research Ethics Committee 01 approved this study (reference: 14/SS/1085) and NHS Permissions were granted from all trusts. Findings will be published in peer

  17. Experimental Protocol for Biodiesel Production with Isolation of Alkenones as Coproducts from Commercial Isochrysis Algal Biomass

    PubMed Central

    O'Neil, Gregory W.; Williams, John R.; Wilson-Peltier, Julia; Knothe, Gerhard; Reddy, Christopher M.

    2016-01-01

    The need to replace petroleum fuels with alternatives from renewable and more environmentally sustainable sources is of growing importance. Biomass-derived biofuels have gained considerable attention in this regard, however first generation biofuels from edible crops like corn ethanol or soybean biodiesel have generally fallen out of favor. There is thus great interest in the development of methods for the production of liquid fuels from domestic and superior non-edible sources. Here we describe a detailed procedure for the production of a purified biodiesel from the marine microalgae Isochrysis. Additionally, a unique suite of lipids known as polyunsaturated long-chain alkenones are isolated in parallel as potentially valuable coproducts to offset the cost of biodiesel production. Multi-kilogram quantities of Isochrysis are purchased from two commercial sources, one as a wet paste (80% water) that is first dried prior to processing, and the other a dry milled powder (95% dry). Lipids are extracted with hexanes in a Soxhlet apparatus to produce an algal oil ("hexane algal oil") containing both traditional fats (i.e., triglycerides, 46-60% w/w) and alkenones (16-25% w/w). Saponification of the triglycerides in the algal oil allows for separation of the resulting free fatty acids (FFAs) from alkenone-containing neutral lipids. FFAs are then converted to biodiesel (i.e., fatty acid methyl esters, FAMEs) by acid-catalyzed esterification while alkenones are isolated and purified from the neutral lipids by crystallization. We demonstrate that biodiesel from both commercial Isochrysis biomasses have similar but not identical FAME profiles, characterized by elevated polyunsaturated fatty acid contents (approximately 40% w/w). Yields of biodiesel were consistently higher when starting from the Isochrysis wet paste (12% w/w vs. 7% w/w), which can be traced to lower amounts of hexane algal oil obtained from the powdered Isochrysis product. PMID:27404113

  18. A History of the Improvement of Internet Protocols Over Satellites Using ACTS

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Allman, Mark; Kruse, Hans; Ostermann, Shawn

    2000-01-01

    This paper outlines the main results of a number of ACTS experiments on the efficacy of using standard Internet protocols over long-delay satellite channels. These experiments have been jointly conducted by NASAs Glenn Research Center and Ohio University over the last six years. The focus of our investigations has been the impact of long-delay networks with non-zero bit-error rates on the performance of the suite of Internet protocols. In particular, we have focused on the most widely used transport protocol, the Transmission Control Protocol (TCP), as well as several application layer protocols. This paper presents our main results, as well as references to more verbose discussions of our experiments.

  19. A childhood chemotherapy protocol improves overall survival among adults with T-lymphoblastic lymphoma

    PubMed Central

    Xia, Zhong-jun; Chen, Xiao-qin; Geng, Qi-rong; Wang, Wei-da; Wang, Liang; Lu, Yue

    2016-01-01

    A broadly accepted standard treatment for adult T-lymphoblastic lymphoma (T-LBL) has not yet been defined. To address that issue, we retrospectively compared three chemotherapy regimens used to treat 110 adult patients with newly diagnosed T-LBL. These included two adult regimens (ECOG2993 and hyper-CVAD) and a childhood regimen (BFM-90). These intensive drug regimens are mainly used to treat childhood and adult acute lymphoblastic leukemia. They included induction, consolidation, and maintenance chemotherapy protocols and were administered over the course of 2 years. Seventy-five patients (80%) achieved a complete remission (CR). Within a median follow-up time of 31 months (range: 5–152 months), the 5-year overall survival (OS) and progression-free survival (PFS) rates were 47.7% (95% CI, 35.0–69.8%) and 45.7% (95% CI, 27.6–56.6%), respectively. Shorter survival was associated with age > 40 years, poor ECOG PS and bone marrow involvement. Elevated lactic dehydrogenase (LDH) level, Ann Arbor stage and International Prognostic Index (IPI) score had no prognostic value. The childhood chemotherapy regimen improved CR and the overall survival rate more than the adult regimen in patients aged < 40 years. PMID:27150061

  20. An improved control mode for the ping-pong protocol operation in imperfect quantum channels

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zawadzki, Piotr

    2015-07-01

    Quantum direct communication (QDC) can bring confidentiality of sensitive information without any encryption. A ping-pong protocol, a well-known example of entanglement-based QDC, offers asymptotic security in a perfect quantum channel. However, it has been shown (Wójcik in Phys Rev Lett 90(15):157901, 2003. doi:10.1103/PhysRevLett.90.157901) that it is not secure in the presence of losses. Moreover, legitimate parities cannot rely on dense information coding due to possible undetectable eavesdropping even in the perfect setting (Pavičić in Phys Rev A 87(4):042326, 2013. doi:10.1103/PhysRevA.87.042326). We have identified the source of the above-mentioned weaknesses in the incomplete check of the EPR pair coherence. We propose an improved version of the control mode, and we discuss its relation to the already-known attacks that undermine the QDC security. It follows that the new control mode detects these attacks with high probability and independently on a quantum channel type. As a result, an asymptotic security of the QDC communication can be maintained for imperfect quantum channels, also in the regime of dense information coding.

  1. Improvement of halophilic cellulase production from locally isolated fungal strain

    PubMed Central

    Gunny, Ahmad Anas Nagoor; Arbain, Dachyar; Jamal, Parveen; Gumba, Rizo Edwin

    2014-01-01

    Halophilic cellulases from the newly isolated fungus, Aspergillus terreus UniMAP AA-6 were found to be useful for in situ saccharification of ionic liquids treated lignocelluloses. Efforts have been taken to improve the enzyme production through statistical optimization approach namely Plackett–Burman design and the Face Centered Central Composite Design (FCCCD). Plackett–Burman experimental design was used to screen the medium components and process conditions. It was found that carboxymethylcellulose (CMC), FeSO4·7H2O, NaCl, MgSO4·7H2O, peptone, agitation speed and inoculum size significantly influence the production of halophilic cellulase. On the other hand, KH2PO4, KOH, yeast extract and temperature had a negative effect on enzyme production. Further optimization through FCCCD revealed that the optimization approach improved halophilic cellulase production from 0.029 U/ml to 0.0625 U/ml, which was approximately 2.2-times greater than before optimization. PMID:26150755

  2. Single prokaryotic cell isolation and total transcript amplification protocol for transcriptomic analysis.

    PubMed

    Kang, Yun; McMillan, Ian; Norris, Michael H; Hoang, Tung T

    2015-07-01

    Until recently, transcriptome analyses of single cells have been confined to eukaryotes. The information obtained from single-cell transcripts can provide detailed insight into spatiotemporal gene expression, and it could be even more valuable if expanded to prokaryotic cells. Transcriptome analysis of single prokaryotic cells is a recently developed and powerful tool. Here we describe a procedure that allows amplification of the total transcript of a single prokaryotic cell for in-depth analysis. This is performed by using a laser-capture microdissection instrument for single-cell isolation, followed by reverse transcription via Moloney murine leukemia virus, degradation of chromosomal DNA with McrBC and DpnI restriction enzymes, single-stranded cDNA (ss-cDNA) ligation using T4 polynucleotide kinase and CircLigase, and polymerization of ss-cDNA to double-stranded cDNA (ds-cDNA) by Φ29 polymerase. This procedure takes ∼5 d, and sufficient amounts of ds-cDNA can be obtained from single-cell RNA template for further microarray analysis.

  3. Simple and rapid protocol for the isolation of PCR-amplifiable DNA from medicinal plants.

    PubMed

    Alatar, A A; Mahmoud, M A; Al-Sohaibani, S A; Abd-Elsalam, K A

    2012-02-13

    Medicinal plant species has a valuable economic importance because of its usage as pharmaceuticals, nutritional, as well as its use in popular medication. For DNA-based techniques, nanogram quantities of the purified DNA are requisite to amplify and yield sufficient amounts of PCR products. SDS-based DNA isolation method was used to extract DNA from 11 species of different aromatic and medicinal plants collected from Saudi Arabia. Three hundred milligrams of fresh shredded plant material was necessary. The DNA purity was further confirmed by agarose gel, restriction endonuclease digestion and microsatellite primed-polymerase chain reaction (MP-PCR). DNA yields ranged from 10-20 μg (in 100-μL elution volumes) from all plant material evaluated. The DNA obtained was free of any contaminating proteins, polysaccharides and colored pigments. The extracted genomic DNA was found suitable for restriction digestion and PCR amplification. Our experimental procedure provides an easy, suitable, non-toxic, cheap, and quick process for the amplification of DNA from medical plant tissue.

  4. On the Improvement of Free-Energy Calculation from Steered Molecular Dynamics Simulations Using Adaptive Stochastic Perturbation Protocols

    PubMed Central

    Perišić, Ognjen; Lu, Hui

    2014-01-01

    The potential of mean force (PMF) calculation in single molecule manipulation experiments performed via the steered molecular dynamics (SMD) technique is a computationally very demanding task because the analyzed system has to be perturbed very slowly to be kept close to equilibrium. Faster perturbations, far from equilibrium, increase dissipation and move the average work away from the underlying free energy profile, and thus introduce a bias into the PMF estimate. The Jarzynski equality offers a way to overcome the bias problem by being able to produce an exact estimate of the free energy difference, regardless of the perturbation regime. However, with a limited number of samples and high dissipation the Jarzynski equality also introduces a bias. In our previous work, based on the Brownian motion formalism, we introduced three stochastic perturbation protocols aimed at improving the PMF calculation with the Jarzynski equality in single molecule manipulation experiments and analogous computer simulations. This paper describes the PMF reconstruction results based on full-atom molecular dynamics simulations, obtained with those three protocols. We also want to show that the protocols are applicable with the second-order cumulant expansion formula. Our protocols offer a very noticeable improvement over the simple constant velocity pulling. They are able to produce an acceptable estimate of PMF with a significantly reduced bias, even with very fast perturbation regimes. Therefore, the protocols can be adopted as practical and efficient tools for the analysis of mechanical properties of biological molecules. PMID:25232859

  5. Clinical Guidelines for the Use of Buprenorphine in the Treatment of Opioid Addiction. Treatment Improvement Protocol (TIP) Series 40

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Boone, Margaret; Brown, Nancy J.; Moon, Mary A.; Schuman, Deborah J.; Thomas, Josephine; Wright, Denise L.

    2004-01-01

    This Treatment Improvement Protocol (TIP) addresses the clinical use of buprenorphine in the treatment of opioid addiction. TIPs are best-practice guidelines for the treatment of substance use disorders that make the latest research in substance abuse treatment available to counselors and educators. The content was generated by a panel of experts…

  6. Communications protocol

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Zhou, Xiaoming (Inventor); Baras, John S. (Inventor)

    2010-01-01

    The present invention relates to an improved communications protocol which increases the efficiency of transmission in return channels on a multi-channel slotted Alohas system by incorporating advanced error correction algorithms, selective retransmission protocols and the use of reserved channels to satisfy the retransmission requests.

  7. The Agricultural Model Intercomparison and Improvement Project (AgMIP): Protocols and Pilot Studies

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Rosenzweig, C.; Jones, J. W.; Hatfield, J. L.; Ruane, A. C.; Boote, K. J.; Thorburn, P.; Antle, J. M.; Nelson, G. C.; Porter, C.; Janssen, S.; Asseng, S.; Basso, B.; Ewert, F.; Wallach, D.; Baigorria, G.; Winter, J. M.

    2012-01-01

    The Agricultural Model Intercomparison and Improvement Project (AgMIP) is a major international effort linking the climate, crop, and economic modeling communities with cutting-edge information technology to produce improved crop and economic models and the next generation of climate impact projections for the agricultural sector. The goals of AgMIP are to improve substantially the characterization of world food security due to climate change and to enhance adaptation capacity in both developing and developed countries. Analyses of the agricultural impacts of climate variability and change require a transdisciplinary effort to consistently link state-of-the-art climate scenarios to crop and economic models. Crop model outputs are aggregated as inputs to regional and global economic models to determine regional vulnerabilities, changes in comparative advantage, price effects, and potential adaptation strategies in the agricultural sector. Climate, Crop Modeling, Economics, and Information Technology Team Protocols are presented to guide coordinated climate, crop modeling, economics, and information technology research activities around the world, along with AgMIP Cross-Cutting Themes that address uncertainty, aggregation and scaling, and the development of Representative Agricultural Pathways (RAPs) to enable testing of climate change adaptations in the context of other regional and global trends. The organization of research activities by geographic region and specific crops is described, along with project milestones. Pilot results demonstrate AgMIP's role in assessing climate impacts with explicit representation of uncertainties in climate scenarios and simulations using crop and economic models. An intercomparison of wheat model simulations near Obregón, Mexico reveals inter-model differences in yield sensitivity to [CO2] with model uncertainty holding approximately steady as concentrations rise, while uncertainty related to choice of crop model increases with

  8. Systematic study of cell isolation from bovine nucleus pulposus: Improving cell yield and experiment reliability.

    PubMed

    Lee, Juliana T Y; Cheung, Kenneth M C; Leung, Victor Y L

    2015-12-01

    Differences in matrix compositions in human nucleus pulposus (NP) clinical samples demand different cell isolation protocols for optimal results but there is no clear guide about this to date. Sub-optimal protocols may result in low cell yield, limited reliability of results or even failure of experiments. Cell yield, viability and attachment of cells isolated from bovine NP tissue with different protocols were estimated by cell counting, Trypan blue staining and cell culturing respectively. RNA was extracted from isolated cells and quantified by Nanodrop spectrometry and RT-qPCR. Higher collagenase concentration, longer digestion duration and pronase pre-treatment increased the cell yield. Cell viability remained high (<5% dead cells) even after 0.2% collagenase treatment for overnight. NP cells remained to have high ACAN, COL2A1, CDH2, KRT18, and KRT19 expression compared to muscle cells for different cell isolation conditions tested. Digestion by collagenase alone without the use of pronase could isolate cells from human degenerated NP tissue but clusters of cells were observed. We suggest the use of the disappearance of tissue as an indirect measure of cells released. This study provides a guide for researchers to decide the parameters involved in NP cell isolation for optimal outcome.

  9. Improving glycopeptide synthesis: a convenient protocol for the preparation of beta-glycosylamines and the synthesis of glycopeptides.

    PubMed

    Hackenberger, Christian P R; O'Reilly, Mary K; Imperiali, Barbara

    2005-04-29

    [reaction: see text] Herein we apply a recently introduced protocol using ammonium carbamate in methanol to the amination of crude chitobiose leading to 1,beta-aminochitobiose. This simple, one-step procedure allows a facile preparation of unstable glycosylamines in contrast to the commonly implemented ammonium bicarbonate based amination of water-soluble carbohydrates. The new amination protocol leads to an improved synthesis of the key chitobiosyl-asparagine building block for the SPPS of glycopeptides. The utility of the method is demonstrated with the synthesis of a 39-amino acid glycoprotein.

  10. Improving adherence to web-based cessation programs: a randomized controlled trial study protocol

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    Background Reducing smoking prevalence is a public health priority that can save more lives and money than almost any other known preventive intervention. Internet interventions have the potential for enormous public health impact given their broad reach and effectiveness. However, most users engage only minimally with even the best designed websites, diminishing their impact due to an insufficient ‘dose’. Two approaches to improve adherence to Internet cessation programs are integrating smokers into an online social network and providing free nicotine replacement therapy (NRT). Active participation in online communities is associated with higher rates of cessation. Integrating smokers into an online social network can increase support and may also increase utilization of cessation tools and NRT. Removing barriers to NRT may increase uptake and adherence, and may also increase use of online cessation tools as smokers look for information and support while quitting. The combination of both strategies may exert the most powerful effects on adherence compared to either strategy alone. Methods/Design This study compares the efficacy of a smoking cessation website (WEB) alone and in conjunction with free NRT and a social network (SN) protocol designed to integrate participants into the online community. Using a 2 (SN, no SN) x 2 (NRT, no NRT) randomized, controlled factorial design with repeated measures at baseline, 3 months, and 9 months, this study will recruit N = 4,000 new members of an internet cessation program and randomize them to: 1) WEB, 2) WEB + SN, 3) WEB + NRT, or 4) WEB + SN + NRT. Hypotheses are that all interventions will outperform WEB and that WEB + SN + NRT will outperform WEB + NRT and WEB + SN on 30-day point prevalence abstinence at 9 months. Exploratory analyses will examine theory-driven hypotheses about the mediators and moderators of outcome. Discussion Addressing adherence in internet cessation programs is critical and timely to leverage

  11. Clinically Practical Magnetic Resonance Protocol for Improved Specificity in Breast Cancer Diagnosis

    DTIC Science & Technology

    2005-06-01

    NUMBER OF PAGES 19a. NAME OF RESPONSIBLE PERSON USAMRMC a. REPORT U b . ABSTRACT U c. THIS PAGE U UU 37 19b. TELEPHONE NUMBER...recruitment and MRI/MRS scanning protocol, Months 1-6: a. Interacting with radiologists and surgeons at breast care center. b . Preparing...125 patients with the MRI/MRS protocol. b . Creating and maintaining data base for MR data and biopsy results. c. Coordinating between research

  12. Cryptanalysis and improvement of authentication and key agreement protocols for telecare medicine information systems.

    PubMed

    Islam, S K Hafizul; Khan, Muhammad Khurram

    2014-10-01

    Recently, many authentication protocols have been presented using smartcard for the telecare medicine information system (TMIS). In 2014, Xu et al. put forward a two-factor mutual authentication with key agreement protocol using elliptic curve cryptography (ECC). However, the authors have proved that the protocol is not appropriate for practical use as it has many problems (1) it fails to achieve strong authentication in login and authentication phases; (2) it fails to update the password correctly in the password change phase; (3) it fails to provide the revocation of lost/stolen smartcard; and (4) it fails to protect the strong replay attack. We then devised an anonymous and provably secure two-factor authentication protocol based on ECC. Our protocol is analyzed with the random oracle model and demonstrated to be formally secured against the hardness assumption of computational Diffie-Hellman problem. The performance evaluation demonstrated that our protocol outperforms from the perspective of security, functionality and computation costs over other existing designs.

  13. Improving the performance of community health workers in humanitarian emergencies: a realist evaluation protocol for the PIECES programme

    PubMed Central

    Gilmore, Brynne; Adams, Ben Jack; Bartoloni, Alex; Alhaydar, Bana; McAuliffe, Eilish; Raven, Joanna; Taegtmeyer, Miriam; Vallières, Frédérique

    2016-01-01

    Introduction Understanding what enhances the motivation and performance of community health workers (CHWs) in humanitarian emergencies represents a key research gap within the field of human resources for health. This paper presents the research protocol for the Performance ImprovEment of CHWs in Emergency Settings (PIECES) research programme. Enhancing Learning and Research in Humanitarian Action (ELRHA) funded the development of this protocol as part of their Health in Humanitarian Crises (R2HC) call (No.19839). PIECES aims to understand what factors improve the performance of CHWs in level III humanitarian emergencies. Methods and analysis The suggested protocol uses a realist evaluation with multiple cases across the 3 country sites: Turkey, Iraq and Lebanon. Working with International Medical Corps (IMC), an initial programme theory was elicited through literature and document reviews, semistructured interviews and focus groups with IMC programme managers and CHWs. Based on this initial theory, this protocol proposes a combination of semistructured interviews, life histories and critical incident narratives, surveys and latent variable modelling of key constructs to explain how contextual factors work to trigger mechanisms for specific outcomes relating to IMC's 300+ CHWs' performance. Participants will also include programme staff, CHWs and programme beneficiaries. Realist approaches will be used to better understand ‘what works, for whom and under what conditions’ for improving CHW performance within humanitarian contexts. Ethics and dissemination Trinity College Dublin's Health Policy and Management/Centre for Global Health Research Ethics Committee gave ethical approval for the protocol development phase. For the full research project, additional ethical approval will be sought from: Université St. Joseph (Lebanon), the Ethics Committee of the Ministry of Health in Baghdad (Iraq) and the Middle East Technical University (Turkey). Dissemination

  14. Study of accent-based music speech protocol development for improving voice problems in stroke patients with mixed dysarthria.

    PubMed

    Kim, Soo Ji; Jo, Uiri

    2013-01-01

    Based on the anatomical and functional commonality between singing and speech, various types of musical elements have been employed in music therapy research for speech rehabilitation. This study was to develop an accent-based music speech protocol to address voice problems of stroke patients with mixed dysarthria. Subjects were 6 stroke patients with mixed dysarthria and they received individual music therapy sessions. Each session was conducted for 30 minutes and 12 sessions including pre- and post-test were administered for each patient. For examining the protocol efficacy, the measures of maximum phonation time (MPT), fundamental frequency (F0), average intensity (dB), jitter, shimmer, noise to harmonics ratio (NHR), and diadochokinesis (DDK) were compared between pre and post-test and analyzed with a paired sample t-test. The results showed that the measures of MPT, F0, dB, and sequential motion rates (SMR) were significantly increased after administering the protocol. Also, there were statistically significant differences in the measures of shimmer, and alternating motion rates (AMR) of the syllable /K$\\inve$/ between pre- and post-test. The results indicated that the accent-based music speech protocol may improve speech motor coordination including respiration, phonation, articulation, resonance, and prosody of patients with dysarthria. This suggests the possibility of utilizing the music speech protocol to maximize immediate treatment effects in the course of a long-term treatment for patients with dysarthria.

  15. An improved method to isolate lichen algae by gel filtration.

    PubMed

    Pérez, M J; Vicente, C; Legaz, M E

    1985-08-01

    Photobiont cells of the lichen Evernia prunastri have completely been separated from their fungal partner by filtration through a bed of Sepharose 2B. Both mannitol and ribitol have been quantified by gas-liquid chromatography in the different steps of the isolation procedure. Absence of mannitol, which is exclusively produced by the mycobiont, has been used as the best probe to monitor isolation.

  16. Isolation of 1E4 IgM Anti-Fasciola hepatica Rediae Monoclonal Antibody from Ascites: Comparison of Two Purification Protocols.

    PubMed

    Alba, Annia; Marcet, Ricardo; Otero, Oscar; Hernández, Hilda M; Figueredo, Mabel; Sarracent, Jorge

    2016-02-01

    Purification of immunoglobulin M (IgM) antibodies could be challenging, and is often characterized by the optimization of the purification protocol to best suit the particular features of the molecule. Here, two different schemes were compared to purify, from ascites, the 1E4 IgM monoclonal antibody (mAb) previously raised against the stage of redia of the trematode Fasciola hepatica. This immunoglobulin is used as capture antibody in an immunoenzymatic assay to detect parasite ongoing infection in its intermediate hosts. The first purification protocol of the 1E4 mAb involved two chromatographic steps: an affinity chromatography on a Concanavalin A matrix followed by size exclusion chromatography. An immunoaffinity chromatography was selected as the second protocol for one-step purification of the antibody using the crude extract of adult parasites coupled to a commercial matrix. Immunoreactivity of the fractions during purification schemes was assessed by indirect immunoenzymatic assays against the crude extract of F. hepatica rediae, while purity was estimated by protein electrophoresis. Losses on the recovery of the antibody isolated by the first purification protocol occurred due to protein precipitation during the concentration of the sample and to low resolution of the size exclusion molecular chromatography step regarding this particular immunoglobulin. The immunoaffinity chromatography using F. hepatica antigens as ligands proved to be the most suitable protocol yielding a pure and immunoreactive antibody. The purification protocols used are discussed regarding efficiency and difficulties.

  17. Improving accessibility of trust guidelines and protocols at the Great Western Hospital, Swindon.

    PubMed

    Robertson, Ian; Smith, Abigail; Tucker, Jennifer; Cilia, Erica; Chen, Kangni; Marion, Rose; Nesbitt, Julian; Ramcharitar, Steve; Cathiavadi Greamspet, Mala

    2014-01-01

    Trust guidelines and policies outline recommendations for the management of common clinical and non-clinical situations, serving to standardise best practice. Prior to this project, there was no consolidated location for these documents. Lack of organisational structure and inadequate search functionality within the trust intranet led to time wasted locating information, acting outside of recognised best practice, and ultimately potentially compromising patient safety. We surveyed 55 junior doctors, 95% of respondents were dependent on guidelines on a daily basis. 20% spending greater than 5 minutes to locate protocols and 38% unable to locate some relevant documents at all. We analysed the time taken for junior doctors to locate six randomly selected protocols. Pre-intervention mean time was 133 seconds (on six occasions doctors were unable to locate the guideline). All trust guidelines and protocols currently available on the intranet were collated, consolidated, and renamed according to content. These were then re-alphabetised and new search terms linked to each document. Existing links were then uploaded and a single web page made available via the trust intranet homepage. The new page was publicised by email, posters and interdepartmental presentations. In our post intervention survey, 97% of respondents were aware of the project and had made use of the page. All protocols were located during re-testing with 90% of those resurveyed stating it was easier to locate protocols. Overall, a reduction in the time and number of clicks required to locate protocols was demonstrated: mean time 16 seconds vs 133 seconds pre-intervention (n=60). 53% of guidelines located in <30s and 86% <2 minutes.

  18. How blockchain-timestamped protocols could improve the trustworthiness of medical science

    PubMed Central

    Irving, Greg; Holden, John

    2016-01-01

    Trust in scientific research is diminished by evidence that data are being manipulated. Outcome switching, data dredging and selective publication are some of the problems that undermine the integrity of published research. Methods for using blockchain to provide proof of pre-specified endpoints in clinical trial protocols were first reported by Carlisle. We wished to empirically test such an approach using a clinical trial protocol where outcome switching has previously been reported. Here we confirm the use of blockchain as a low cost, independently verifiable method to audit and confirm the reliability of scientific studies. PMID:27239273

  19. How blockchain-timestamped protocols could improve the trustworthiness of medical science.

    PubMed

    Irving, Greg; Holden, John

    2016-01-01

    Trust in scientific research is diminished by evidence that data are being manipulated. Outcome switching, data dredging and selective publication are some of the problems that undermine the integrity of published research. Methods for using blockchain to provide proof of pre-specified endpoints in clinical trial protocols were first reported by Carlisle. We wished to empirically test such an approach using a clinical trial protocol where outcome switching has previously been reported. Here we confirm the use of blockchain as a low cost, independently verifiable method to audit and confirm the reliability of scientific studies.

  20. Vibration isolation for line of sight performance improvement

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Rodden, J. J.; Dougherty, H. J.; Haile, W. B.

    1987-01-01

    Diagrams of the Reaction Wheel Assembly (RWA) are presented along with charts and graphs illustrating jitter error model, induced vibration tests, radial displacement transfer function, and axial displacement power spectra density. The RWA isolator specification requirements are listed.

  1. Modified CTAB and TRIzol protocols improve RNA extraction from chemically complex Embryophyta1

    PubMed Central

    Jordon-Thaden, Ingrid E.; Chanderbali, Andre S.; Gitzendanner, Matthew A.; Soltis, Douglas E.

    2015-01-01

    Premise of the study: Here we present a series of protocols for RNA extraction across a diverse array of plants; we focus on woody, aromatic, aquatic, and other chemically complex taxa. Methods and Results: Ninety-one taxa were subjected to RNA extraction with three methods presented here: (1) TRIzol/TURBO DNA-free kits using the manufacturer’s protocol with the addition of sarkosyl; (2) a combination method using cetyltrimethylammonium bromide (CTAB) and TRIzol/sarkosyl/TURBO DNA-free; and (3) a combination of CTAB and QIAGEN RNeasy Plant Mini Kit. Bench-ready protocols are given. Conclusions: After an iterative process of working with chemically complex taxa, we conclude that the use of TRIzol supplemented with sarkosyl and the TURBO DNA-free kit is an effective, efficient, and robust method for obtaining RNA from 100 mg of leaf tissue of land plant species (Embryophyta) examined. Our protocols can be used to provide RNA of suitable stability, quantity, and quality for transcriptome sequencing. PMID:25995975

  2. Towards an improved LAI collection protocol via simulated field-based PAR sensing

    DOE PAGES

    Yao, Wei; Van Leeuwen, Martin; Romanczyk, Paul; ...

    2016-07-14

    In support of NASA’s next-generation spectrometer—the Hyperspectral Infrared Imager (HyspIRI)—we are working towards assessing sub-pixel vegetation structure from imaging spectroscopy data. Of particular interest is Leaf Area Index (LAI), which is an informative, yet notoriously challenging parameter to efficiently measure in situ. While photosynthetically-active radiation (PAR) sensors have been validated for measuring crop LAI, there is limited literature on the efficacy of PAR-based LAI measurement in the forest environment. This study (i) validates PAR-based LAI measurement in forest environments, and (ii) proposes a suitable collection protocol, which balances efficiency with measurement variation, e.g., due to sun flecks and various-sized canopymore » gaps. A synthetic PAR sensor model was developed in the Digital Imaging and Remote Sensing Image Generation (DIRSIG) model and used to validate LAI measurement based on first-principles and explicitly-known leaf geometry. Simulated collection parameters were adjusted to empirically identify optimal collection protocols. Furthermore, these collection protocols were then validated in the field by correlating PAR-based LAI measurement to the normalized difference vegetation index (NDVI) extracted from the “classic” Airborne Visible Infrared Imaging Spectrometer (AVIRIS-C) data (R2 was 0.61). The results indicate that our proposed collecting protocol is suitable for measuring the LAI of sparse forest (LAI < 3–5 ( m2/m2)).« less

  3. Towards an improved LAI collection protocol via simulated field-based PAR sensing

    SciTech Connect

    Yao, Wei; Van Leeuwen, Martin; Romanczyk, Paul; van Aardt, Jan; Kelbe, David

    2016-07-14

    In support of NASA’s next-generation spectrometer—the Hyperspectral Infrared Imager (HyspIRI)—we are working towards assessing sub-pixel vegetation structure from imaging spectroscopy data. Of particular interest is Leaf Area Index (LAI), which is an informative, yet notoriously challenging parameter to efficiently measure in situ. While photosynthetically-active radiation (PAR) sensors have been validated for measuring crop LAI, there is limited literature on the efficacy of PAR-based LAI measurement in the forest environment. This study (i) validates PAR-based LAI measurement in forest environments, and (ii) proposes a suitable collection protocol, which balances efficiency with measurement variation, e.g., due to sun flecks and various-sized canopy gaps. A synthetic PAR sensor model was developed in the Digital Imaging and Remote Sensing Image Generation (DIRSIG) model and used to validate LAI measurement based on first-principles and explicitly-known leaf geometry. Simulated collection parameters were adjusted to empirically identify optimal collection protocols. Furthermore, these collection protocols were then validated in the field by correlating PAR-based LAI measurement to the normalized difference vegetation index (NDVI) extracted from the “classic” Airborne Visible Infrared Imaging Spectrometer (AVIRIS-C) data (R2 was 0.61). The results indicate that our proposed collecting protocol is suitable for measuring the LAI of sparse forest (LAI < 3–5 ( m2/m2)).

  4. Towards an Improved LAI Collection Protocol via Simulated and Field-Based PAR Sensing

    PubMed Central

    Yao, Wei; Kelbe, David; van Leeuwen, Martin; Romanczyk, Paul; van Aardt, Jan

    2016-01-01

    In support of NASA’s next-generation spectrometer—the Hyperspectral Infrared Imager (HyspIRI)—we are working towards assessing sub-pixel vegetation structure from imaging spectroscopy data. Of particular interest is Leaf Area Index (LAI), which is an informative, yet notoriously challenging parameter to efficiently measure in situ. While photosynthetically-active radiation (PAR) sensors have been validated for measuring crop LAI, there is limited literature on the efficacy of PAR-based LAI measurement in the forest environment. This study (i) validates PAR-based LAI measurement in forest environments, and (ii) proposes a suitable collection protocol, which balances efficiency with measurement variation, e.g., due to sun flecks and various-sized canopy gaps. A synthetic PAR sensor model was developed in the Digital Imaging and Remote Sensing Image Generation (DIRSIG) model and used to validate LAI measurement based on first-principles and explicitly-known leaf geometry. Simulated collection parameters were adjusted to empirically identify optimal collection protocols. These collection protocols were then validated in the field by correlating PAR-based LAI measurement to the normalized difference vegetation index (NDVI) extracted from the “classic” Airborne Visible Infrared Imaging Spectrometer (AVIRIS-C) data (R2 was 0.61). The results indicate that our proposed collecting protocol is suitable for measuring the LAI of sparse forest (LAI < 3–5 (m2/m2)). PMID:27428969

  5. Towards an Improved LAI Collection Protocol via Simulated and Field-Based PAR Sensing.

    PubMed

    Yao, Wei; Kelbe, David; Leeuwen, Martin van; Romanczyk, Paul; Aardt, Jan van

    2016-07-14

    In support of NASA's next-generation spectrometer-the Hyperspectral Infrared Imager (HyspIRI)-we are working towards assessing sub-pixel vegetation structure from imaging spectroscopy data. Of particular interest is Leaf Area Index (LAI), which is an informative, yet notoriously challenging parameter to efficiently measure in situ. While photosynthetically-active radiation (PAR) sensors have been validated for measuring crop LAI, there is limited literature on the efficacy of PAR-based LAI measurement in the forest environment. This study (i) validates PAR-based LAI measurement in forest environments, and (ii) proposes a suitable collection protocol, which balances efficiency with measurement variation, e.g., due to sun flecks and various-sized canopy gaps. A synthetic PAR sensor model was developed in the Digital Imaging and Remote Sensing Image Generation (DIRSIG) model and used to validate LAI measurement based on first-principles and explicitly-known leaf geometry. Simulated collection parameters were adjusted to empirically identify optimal collection protocols. These collection protocols were then validated in the field by correlating PAR-based LAI measurement to the normalized difference vegetation index (NDVI) extracted from the "classic" Airborne Visible Infrared Imaging Spectrometer (AVIRIS-C) data ( R 2 was 0.61). The results indicate that our proposed collecting protocol is suitable for measuring the LAI of sparse forest (LAI < 3-5 ( m 2 / m 2 )).

  6. Improving post-stroke dysphagia outcomes through a standardized and multidisciplinary protocol: an exploratory cohort study.

    PubMed

    Gandolfi, Marialuisa; Smania, Nicola; Bisoffi, Giulia; Squaquara, Teresa; Zuccher, Paola; Mazzucco, Sara

    2014-12-01

    Stroke is a major cause of dysphagia. Few studies to date have reported on standardized multidisciplinary protocolized approaches to the management of post-stroke dysphagia. The aim of this retrospective cohort study was to evaluate the impact of a standardized multidisciplinary protocol on clinical outcomes in patients with post-stroke dysphagia. We performed retrospective chart reviews of patients with post-stroke dysphagia admitted to the neurological ward of Verona University Hospital from 2004 to 2008. Outcomes after usual treatment for dysphagia (T- group) were compared versus outcomes after treatment under a standardized diagnostic and rehabilitative multidisciplinary protocol (T+ group). Outcome measures were death, pneumonia on X-ray, need for respiratory support, and proportion of patients on tube feeding at discharge. Of the 378 patients admitted with stroke, 84 had dysphagia and were enrolled in the study. A significantly lower risk of in-hospital death (odds ratio [OR] 0.20 [0.53-0.78]), pneumonia (OR 0.33 [0.10-1.03]), need for respiratory support (OR 0.48 [0.14-1.66]), and tube feeding at discharge (OR 0.30 [0.09-0.91]) was recorded for the T+ group (N = 39) as compared to the T- group (N = 45). The adjusted OR showed no difference between the two groups for in-hospital death and tube feeding at discharge. Use of a standardized multidisciplinary protocolized approach to the management of post-stroke dysphagia may significantly reduce rates of aspiration pneumonia, in-hospital mortality, and tube feeding in dysphagic stroke survivors. Consistent with the study's exploratory purposes, our findings suggest that the multidisciplinary protocol applied in this study offers an effective model of management of post-stroke dysphagia.

  7. Cryptanalysis and improvement of quantum broadcast communication and authentication protocol with a quantum one-time pad

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Liu, Zhi-Hao; Chen, Han-Wu

    2016-08-01

    The security of quantum broadcast communication (QBC) and authentication protocol based on Greenberger-Horne-Zeilinger (GHZ) state and quantum one-time pad is analyzed. It is shown that there are some security issues in this protocol. Firstly, an external eavesdropper can take the intercept-measure-resend attack strategy to eavesdrop on 0.369 bit of every bit of the identity string of each receiver without being detected. Meanwhile, 0.524 bit of every bit of the secret message can be eavesdropped on without being detected. Secondly, an inner receiver can take the intercept-measure-resend attack strategy to eavesdrop on half of the identity string of the other’s definitely without being checked. In addition, an alternative attack called the CNOT-operation attack is discussed. As for the multi-party QBC protocol, the attack efficiency increases with the increase of the number of users. Finally, the QBC protocol is improved to a secure one. Project supported by the National Natural Science Foundation of China (Grant Nos. 61502101 and 61170321), the Natural Science Foundation of Jiangsu Province, China (Grant No. BK20140651), the Research Fund for the Doctoral Program of Higher Education, China (Grant No. 20110092110024), and the Project Funded by PAPD and CICAEET.

  8. Innovative Approaches Using Lichen Enriched Media to Improve Isolation and Culturability of Lichen Associated Bacteria

    PubMed Central

    Biosca, Elena G.; Flores, Raquel; Santander, Ricardo D.; Díez-Gil, José Luis; Barreno, Eva

    2016-01-01

    Lichens, self-supporting mutualistic associations between a fungal partner and one or more photosynthetic partners, also harbor non-photosynthetic bacteria. The diversity and contribution of these bacteria to the functioning of lichen symbiosis have recently begun to be studied, often by culture-independent techniques due to difficulties in their isolation and culture. However, culturing as yet unculturable lichenic bacteria is critical to unravel their potential functional roles in lichen symbiogenesis, to explore and exploit their biotechnological potential and for the description of new taxa. Our objective was to improve the recovery of lichen associated bacteria by developing novel isolation and culture approaches, initially using the lichen Pseudevernia furfuracea. We evaluated the effect of newly developed media enriched with novel lichen extracts, as well as the influence of thalli washing time and different disinfection and processing protocols of thalli. The developed methodology included: i) the use of lichen enriched media to mimic lichen nutrients, supplemented with the fungicide natamycin; ii) an extended washing of thalli to increase the recovery of ectolichenic bacteria, thus allowing the disinfection of thalli to be discarded, hence enhancing endolichenic bacteria recovery; and iii) the use of an antioxidant buffer to prevent or reduce oxidative stress during thalli disruption. The optimized methodology allowed significant increases in the number and diversity of culturable bacteria associated with P. furfuracea, and it was also successfully applied to the lichens Ramalina farinacea and Parmotrema pseudotinctorum. Furthermore, we provide, for the first time, data on the abundance of culturable ecto- and endolichenic bacteria that naturally colonize P. furfuracea, R. farinacea and P. pseudotinctorum, some of which were only able to grow on lichen enriched media. This innovative methodology is also applicable to other microorganisms inhabiting these

  9. A novel multi-locus sequence typing (MLST) protocol for Leuconostoc lactis isolates from traditional dairy products in China and Mongolia

    PubMed Central

    2014-01-01

    Background Economically, Leuconostoc lactis is one of the most important species in the genus Leuconostoc. It plays an important role in the food industry including the production of dextrans and bacteriocins. Currently, traditional molecular typing approaches for characterisation of this species at the isolate level are either unavailable or are not sufficiently reliable for practical use. Multilocus sequence typing (MLST) is a robust and reliable method for characterising bacterial and fungal species at the molecular level. In this study, a novel MLST protocol was developed for 50 L. lactis isolates from Mongolia and China. Results Sequences from eight targeted genes (groEL, carB, recA, pheS, murC, pyrG, rpoB and uvrC) were obtained. Sequence analysis indicated 20 different sequence types (STs), with 13 of them being represented by a single isolate. Phylogenetic analysis based on the sequences of eight MLST loci indicated that the isolates belonged to two major groups, A (34 isolates) and B (16 isolates). Linkage disequilibrium analyses indicated that recombination occurred at a low frequency in L. lactis, indicating a clonal population structure. Split-decomposition analysis indicated that intraspecies recombination played a role in generating genotypic diversity amongst isolates. Conclusions Our results indicated that MLST is a valuable tool for typing L. lactis isolates that can be used for further monitoring of evolutionary changes and population genetics. PMID:24912963

  10. Butterfly survival on an isolated island by improved grip.

    PubMed

    Duplouy, Anne; Hanski, Ilkka

    2013-04-23

    On small isolated islands, natural selection is expected to reduce the dispersal capacity of organisms, as short distances do not require a high rate of dispersal, which might lead to accidental emigration from the population. In addition, individuals foregoing the high cost of maintaining flight capacity may instead allocate resources to other functions. However, in butterflies and many other insects, flight is necessary not only for dispersal but also for most other activities. A weakly flying individual would probably do worse and have an elevated rather than reduced probability of accidental emigration. Here, we report results consistent with the hypothesis that a butterfly population on an isolated island, instead of having lost its flight capacity, has evolved better grip to resist the force of wind and to avoid being blown off the island. Our study suggests that local adaptation has occurred in this population in spite of its very small size (Ne ∼ 100), complete isolation, low genetic variation and high genetic load.

  11. Implementing Protocols to Improve Patient Safety in the Medical Imaging Department.

    PubMed

    Carrizales, Gwen; Clark, Kevin R

    2015-01-01

    Patient safety is a focal point in healthcare because of recent changes issued by CMS. Hospital reimbursement rates have fallen, and these reimbursement rates are governed by CMS mandates regarding patient safety procedures. Reimbursement changes are reflected in the National Patient Safety Goals (NPSGs) administered annually by The Joint Commission. Medical imaging departments have multiple areas of patient safety concerns including effective handoff communication, proper patient identification, and safe medication/contrast administration. This literature review examines those areas of patient safety within the medical imaging department and reveals the need for continued protocol and policy changes to keep patients safe.

  12. IMPROVED COMPUTATIONAL NEUTRONICS METHODS AND VALIDATION PROTOCOLS FOR THE ADVANCED TEST REACTOR

    SciTech Connect

    David W. Nigg; Joseph W. Nielsen; Benjamin M. Chase; Ronnie K. Murray; Kevin A. Steuhm

    2012-04-01

    The Idaho National Laboratory (INL) is in the process of modernizing the various reactor physics modeling and simulation tools used to support operation and safety assurance of the Advanced Test Reactor (ATR). Key accomplishments so far have encompassed both computational as well as experimental work. A new suite of stochastic and deterministic transport theory based reactor physics codes and their supporting nuclear data libraries (HELIOS, KENO6/SCALE, NEWT/SCALE, ATTILA, and an extended implementation of MCNP5) has been installed at the INL. Corresponding models of the ATR and ATRC are now operational with all five codes, demonstrating the basic feasibility of the new code packages for their intended purpose. Of particular importance, a set of as-run core depletion HELIOS calculations for all ATR cycles since August 2009 was successfully completed during 2011. This demonstration supported a decision late in the year to proceed with the phased incorporation of the HELIOS methodology into the ATR fuel cycle management process beginning in 2012. On the experimental side of the project, new hardware was fabricated, measurement protocols were finalized, and the first four of six planned physics code validation experiments based on neutron activation spectrometry were conducted at the ATRC facility. Data analysis for the first three experiments, focused on characterization of the neutron spectrum in one of the ATR flux traps, has been completed. The six experiments will ultimately form the basis for a flexible, easily-repeatable ATR physics code validation protocol that is consistent with applicable ASTM standards.

  13. A New Cecal Slurry Preparation Protocol with Improved Long-Term Reproducibility for Animal Models of Sepsis

    PubMed Central

    Starr, Marlene E.; Steele, Allison M.; Saito, Mizuki; Hacker, Bill J.; Evers, B. Mark; Saito, Hiroshi

    2014-01-01

    Sepsis, a life-threatening systemic inflammatory response syndrome induced by infection, is widely studied using laboratory animal models. While cecal-ligation and puncture (CLP) is considered the gold standard model for sepsis research, it may not be preferable for experiments comparing animals of different size or under different dietary regimens. By comparing cecum size, shape, and cecal content characteristics in mice under different experimental conditions (aging, diabetes, pancreatitis), we show that cecum variability could be problematic for some CLP experiments. The cecal slurry (CS) injection model, in which the cecal contents of a laboratory animal are injected intraperitoneally to other animals, is an alternative method for inducing polymicrobial sepsis; however, the CS must be freshly prepared under conventional protocols, which is a major disadvantage with respect to reproducibility and convenience. The objective of this study was to develop an improved CS preparation protocol that allows for long-term storage of CS with reproducible results. Using our new CS preparation protocol we found that bacterial viability is maintained for at least 6 months when the CS is prepared in 15% glycerol-PBS and stored at -80°C. To test sepsis-inducing efficacy of stored CS stocks, various amounts of CS were injected to young (4–6 months old), middle-aged (12–14 months old), and aged (24–26 months old) male C57BL/6 mice. Dose- and age-dependent mortality was observed with high reproducibility. Circulating bacteria levels strongly correlated with mortality suggesting an infection-mediated death. Further, injection with heat-inactivated CS resulted in acute hypothermia without mortality, indicating that CS-mediated death is not due to endotoxic shock. This new CS preparation protocol results in CS stocks which are durable for freezing preservation without loss of bacterial viability, allowing experiments to be performed more conveniently and with higher

  14. Improving Station Performance by Building Isolation Walls in the Tunnel

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Jia, Yan; Horn, Nikolaus; Leohardt, Roman

    2014-05-01

    Conrad Observatory is situated far away from roads and industrial areas on the Trafelberg in Lower Austria. At the end of the seismic tunnel, the main seismic instrument of the Observatory with a station code CONA is located. This station is one of the most important seismic stations in the Austrian Seismic Network (network code OE). The seismic observatory consists of a 145m long gallery and an underground laboratory building with several working areas. About 25 meters away from the station CONA, six temporary seismic stations were implemented for research purposes. Two of them were installed with the same equipment as CONA, while the remaining four stations were set up with digitizers having lower noise and higher resolution (Q330HR) and sensors with the same type (STS-2). In order to prevent possible disturbances by air pressure and temperature fluctuation, three walls were built inside of the tunnel. The first wall is located ca 63 meters from the tunnel entrance, while a set of double walls with a distance of 1.5 meters is placed about 53 meters from the first isolation wall but between the station CONA and the six temporary stations. To assess impact of the isolation walls on noise reduction and detection performance, investigations are conducted in two steps. The first study is carried out by comparing the noise level and detection performance between the station CONA behind the double walls and the stations in front of the double walls for verifying the noise isolation by the double walls. To evaluate the effect of the single wall, station noise level and detection performance were studied by comparing the results before and after the installation of the wall. Results and discussions will be presented. Additional experiment is conducted by filling insulation material inside of the aluminium boxes of the sensors (above and around the sensors). This should help us to determine an optimal insulation of the sensors with respect to pressure and temperature

  15. An improved method for isolating viruses from asymptomatic carrier fish

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Amend, Donald F.; Pietsch, John P.

    1972-01-01

    This paper describes a method using elevated levels of penicillin, streptomycin, and nystatin instead of filters to control bacteria and mold contaminants in specimens processed for virus isolation. Filters were shown to significantly reduce the virus concentration. Virus and tissue cultures were not affected by this procedure. In field tests nearly three times more specimens were positive for virus with this method than with the widely used filter technique. Moreover, the cost of materials was less. This method is recommended for inspection and certification purposes.

  16. An optimised protocol to isolate high-quality genomic DNA from seed tissues streamlines the workflow to obtain direct estimates of seed dispersal distances in gymnosperms.

    PubMed

    García, C; Escribano-Ávila, G

    2016-05-01

    Genotyping of maternally derived seed tissues from georefered seeds that moved away from their source tree yield direct estimates of seed dispersal distances when the location and the genotype of the fruiting tree are available. These estimates are instrumental in forecasting the response of plant communities to drivers of global change, such as fragmentation or the expansion of invasive species. Obtaining robust assessments of seed dispersal distances requires comparing reliable multilocus genotypes of maternally derived seed tissues and fruiting trees, as previously shown for angiosperm species. However, robust estimates of seed dispersal distances based on direct methods are rare in non-model gymnosperms due to the difficulty in isolating high quality DNA from inconspicuous maternally derived seed tissues. These tissues tend to yield low DNA quantities that increase the frequency of genotyping errors. Here, we deliver a step-by-step visual protocol used to identify and isolate different seed tissues of interest for dispersal studies: embryos (2n, bi-parentally derived), seed coats (2n, maternally derived), and megagametophytes (n, maternally derived). We also provide an optimised lab protocol used to obtain multilocus genotypes from the target seed tissue. These broadly applicable protocols proved successful both in avoiding contamination among different seed tissues and providing reliable multilocus genotypes.

  17. Improved pose and affinity predictions using different protocols tailored on the basis of data availability

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Prathipati, Philip; Nagao, Chioko; Ahmad, Shandar; Mizuguchi, Kenji

    2016-09-01

    The D3R 2015 grand drug design challenge provided a set of blinded challenges for evaluating the applicability of our protocols for pose and affinity prediction. In the present study, we report the application of two different strategies for the two D3R protein targets HSP90 and MAP4K4. HSP90 is a well-studied target system with numerous co-crystal structures and SAR data. Furthermore the D3R HSP90 test compounds showed high structural similarity to existing HSP90 inhibitors in BindingDB. Thus, we adopted an integrated docking and scoring approach involving a combination of both pharmacophoric and heavy atom similarity alignments, local minimization and quantitative structure activity relationships modeling, resulting in the reasonable prediction of pose [with the root mean square deviation (RMSD) values of 1.75 Å for mean pose 1, 1.417 Å for the mean best pose and 1.85 Å for the mean all poses] and affinity (ROC AUC = 0.702 at 7.5 pIC50 cut-off and R = 0.45 for 180 compounds). The second protein, MAP4K4, represents a novel system with limited SAR and co-crystal structure data and little structural similarity of the D3R MAP4K4 test compounds to known MAP4K4 ligands. For this system, we implemented an exhaustive pose and affinity prediction protocol involving docking and scoring using the PLANTS software which considers side chain flexibility together with protein-ligand fingerprints analysis assisting in pose prioritization. This protocol through fares poorly in pose prediction (with the RMSD values of 4.346 Å for mean pose 1, 4.69 Å for mean best pose and 4.75 Å for mean all poses) and produced reasonable affinity prediction (AUC = 0.728 at 7.5 pIC50 cut-off and R = 0.67 for 18 compounds, ranked 1st among 80 submissions).

  18. An Improved Mobility-Based Control Protocol for Tolerating Clone Failures in Wireless Sensor Networks

    PubMed Central

    Zhou, Yuping; Xiong, Naixue; Tan, Mingxin; Huang, Rufeng; Kleonbet, Jon

    2016-01-01

    Nowadays, with the ubiquitous presence of the Internet of Things industry, the application of emerging sensor networks has become a focus of public attention. Unattended sensor nodes can be comprised and cloned to destroy the network topology. This paper proposes a novel distributed protocol and management technique for the detection of mobile replicas to tolerate node failures. In our scheme, sensors’ location claims are forwarded to obtain samples only when the corresponding witnesses meet. Meanwhile, sequential tests of statistical hypotheses are applied to further detect the cloned node by witnesses. The combination of randomized detection based on encountering and sequential tests drastically reduces the routing overhead and false positive/negative rate for detection. Theoretical analysis and simulation results show the detection efficiency and reasonable overhead of the proposed method. PMID:27886054

  19. Improving Packet Delivery Performance of Publish/Subscribe Protocols in Wireless Sensor Networks

    PubMed Central

    Davis, Ernesto García; Calveras, Anna; Demirkol, Ilker

    2013-01-01

    MQTT-S and CoAP are two protocols able to use the publish/subscribe model in Wireless Sensor Networks (WSNs). The high scalability provided by the publish/subscribe model may incur a high packet loss and therefore requires an efficient reliability mechanism to cope with this situation. The reliability mechanism of MQTT-S and CoAP employs a method which defines a fixed value for the retransmission timeout (RTO). This article argues that this method is not efficient for deploying publish/subscribe in WSN, because it may be unable to recover a packet, therefore resulting in a lower packet delivery ratio (PDR) at the subscriber nodes. This article proposes and evaluates an adaptive RTO method, which consists in using a Smooth Round-trip Time and multiplying it by a constant parameter (K). Thanks to this method, the reliability mechanism of MQTT-S and CoAP would be able to react properly to packet loss and would also be lightweight in terms of energy, memory and computing for sensor nodes where these resources are critical. We present a detailed evaluation of the effects of the K value on the calculation of the adaptive RTO method. We also establish the setting for obtaining the highest PDR on the subscriber nodes for single-hop and multi-hop scenarios. The results for single-hop scenario show that use of the appropriate K value for the adaptive RTO method increases the PDR up to 76% for MQTT-S and up to 38% for CoAP when compared with the use of fixed RTO method for both protocols, respectively. Meanwhile the same comparison for multi-hop scenario, the adaptive RTO method increases the PDR up to 36% for MQTT-S and up to 14% for CoAP. PMID:23291579

  20. Improving packet delivery performance of publish/subscribe protocols in wireless sensor networks.

    PubMed

    Davis, Ernesto García; Calveras, Anna; Demirkol, Ilker

    2013-01-04

    MQTT-S and CoAP are two protocols able to use the publish/subscribe model in Wireless Sensor Networks (WSNs). The high scalability provided by the publish/subscribe model may incur a high packet loss and therefore requires an efficient reliability mechanism to cope with this situation. The reliability mechanism of MQTT-S and CoAP employs a method which defines a fixed value for the retransmission timeout (RTO). This article argues that this method is not efficient for deploying publish/subscribe in WSN, because it may be unable to recover a packet, therefore resulting in a lower packet delivery ratio (PDR) at the subscriber nodes. This article proposes and evaluates an adaptive RTO method, which consists in using a Smooth Round-trip Time and multiplying it by a constant parameter (K). Thanks to this method, the reliability mechanism of MQTT-S and CoAP would be able to react properly to packet loss and would also be lightweight in terms of energy, memory and computing for sensor nodes where these resources are critical. We present a detailed evaluation of the effects of the K value on the calculation of the adaptive RTO method. We also establish the setting for obtaining the highest PDR on the subscriber nodes for single-hop and multi-hop scenarios. The results for single-hop scenario show that use of the appropriate K value for the adaptive RTO method increases the PDR up to 76% for MQTT-S and up to 38% for CoAP when compared with the use of fixed RTO method for both protocols, respectively. Meanwhile the same comparison for multi-hop scenario, the adaptive RTO method increases the PDR up to 36% for MQTT-S and up to 14% for CoAP.

  1. A Protocol for Improved Measurement of Arterial Flow Rate in Preclinical Ultrasound

    PubMed Central

    Kenwright, D. A.; Thomson, A. J. W.; Hadoke, P. W. F.; Anderson, T.; Moran, C. M.; Gray, G. A.; Hoskins, P. R.

    2015-01-01

    Purpose: To describe a protocol for the measurement of blood flow rate in small animals and to compare flow rate measurements against measurements made using a transit time flowmeter. Materials and Methods: Measurements were made in rat and mice using a Visualsonics Vevo 770 scanner. The flow rate in carotid and femoral arteries was calculated from the time-average maximum velocity and vessel diameter. A correction factor was applied to correct for the overestimation of velocity arising from geometric spectral broadening. Invasive flow rate measurements were made using a Transonics system. Results: Measurements were achieved in rat carotid and femoral arteries and in mouse carotid arteries. Image quality in the mouse femoral artery was too poor to obtain diameter measurements. The applied correction factor in practice was 0.71–0.77. The diameter varied by 6–18% during the cardiac cycle. There was no overall difference in the flow rate measured using ultrasound and using transit-time flowmeters. The flow rates were comparable with those previously reported in the literature. There was wide variation in flow rates in the same artery in individual animals. Transit-time measurements were associated with changes of a factor of 10 during the typical 40 min measurement period, associated with probe movement, vessel spasm, vessel kinking and other effects. Conclusion: A protocol for the measurement of flow rate in arteries in small animals has been described and successfully used in rat carotid and femoral arteries and in mouse carotid arteries. The availability of a noninvasive procedure for flow rate measurement avoids the problems with changes in flow associated with an invasive procedure. PMID:27689153

  2. Recovery of human DNA profiles from poached deer remains part 2: improved recovery protocol without the need for LCN analysis.

    PubMed

    Tobe, Shanan S; Bailey, Stuart; Govan, James; Welch, Lindsey A

    2013-03-01

    Although poaching is a common wildlife crime, the high and prohibitive cost of specialised animal testing means that many cases are left un-investigated. We previously described a novel approach to wildlife crime investigation that looked at the identification of human DNA on poached animal remains (Tobe, Govan and Welch, 2011). Human DNA was successfully isolated and amplified from simulated poaching incidents, however a low template protocol was required which made this method unsuitable for use in many laboratories. We now report on an optimised recovery and amplification protocol which removes the need for low template analysis. Samples from 10 deer (40 samples total - one from each leg) analysed in the original study were re-analysed in the current study with an additional 11 deer samples. Four samples analysed using Chelex did not show any results and a new method was devised whereby the available DNA was concentrated. By combining the DNA extracts from all tapings of the same deer remains followed by concentration, the recovered quantity of human DNA was found to be 29.5pg±43.2pg, 31× greater than the previous study. The use of the Investigator Decaplex SE (QIAGEN) STR kit provided better results in the form of more complete profiles than did the AmpFℓSTR® SGM Plus® kit at 30cycles (Applied Biosystems). Re-analysis of the samples from the initial study using the new, optimised protocol resulted in an average increase of 18% of recovered alleles. Over 17 samples, 71% of the samples analysed using the optimised protocol showed sufficient amplification for comparison to a reference profile and gave match probabilities ranging from 7.7690×10(-05) to 2.2706×10(-14). The removal of low template analysis means this optimised method provides evidence of high probative value and is suitable for immediate use in forensic laboratories. All methods and techniques used are standard and are compatible with current SOPs. As no high cost non-human DNA analysis is

  3. Improvement and scale-down of a Trichoderma reesei shake flask protocol to microtiter plates enables high-throughput screening.

    PubMed

    Giese, Heiner; Kruithof, Paulien; Meier, Kristina; Sieben, Michaela; Antonov, Elena; Hommes, Ronald W J; Büchs, Jochen

    2014-12-01

    Nowadays, high-throughput screening is essential for determining the best microbial strains and fermentation conditions. Although microtiter plates allow higher throughput in screening than shake flasks, they do not guarantee sufficient oxygen supply if operated at unsuitable conditions. This is especially the case in viscous fermentations, potentially leading to poor liquid movement and surface growth. Therefore, in this study, two aims were pursued. First, an industrial Trichoderma reesei shake flask protocol is improved with respect to oxygen supply and production. Second, this improved shake flask protocol is scaled down into microtiter plate under consideration of similar oxygen supply. For this purpose, the respiration activity monitoring system (RAMOS) was applied. An approach based on a sulfite system was introduced to ensure equal maximum oxygen transfer capacities (OTRmax) in microtiter plates and shake flasks. OTRmax-values of 250 mL shake flasks and 24-well microtiter plates were determined in a wide range of operating conditions. These sulfite datasets were used to identify operating conditions leading to the same oxygen supply for T. reesei in shake flasks and 24-well microtiter plates. For 24-well microtiter plates, the shake flask OTRmax of 20 mmol/L/h of an industrial protocol was obtained under the following optimal operating conditions: 1 mL filling volume per well, 200 rpm shaking frequency and 50 mm shaking diameter. With these conditions almost identical oxygen transfer rates and product concentrations were measured in both scales. The proposed approach is a fast and accurate means to scale-down established screening procedures into microtiter plates to achieve high-throughput.

  4. Improving the Sandia Test Protocols with Advanced Inverter Functionality Testing of INV3, VV11, FW21, and L/HVRT

    SciTech Connect

    Johnson, Jay Dean

    2013-11-01

    Sandia National Laboratories has created a test protocol for IEC TR 61850-90-7 advanced distributed energy resource (DER) functions, titled "Test Protocols for Advanced Inverter Interoperability Functions," often referred to as the Sandia Test Protocols. This document is currently in draft form, but has been shared with stakeholders around the world with the ultimate goal of collaborating to create a consensus set of test protocols which can be then incorporated into an International Electrotechnical Commission (IEC) and/or Underwriters Laboratories (UL) certification standard. The protocols are designed to ensure functional interoperability of DER (primarily photovoltaic (PV) inverters and energy storage systems) as specified by the IEC technical report through communication and electrical tests. In this report, Sandia exercises the electrical characterization portion of the test protocols for four functions: constant power factor (INV3), volt-var (VV11), frequency-watt (FW21), and Low and High Voltage Ride Through (L/HVRT). The goal of the tests reported here was not to characterize the performance of the equipment under test (EUT), but rather to (a) exercise the draft Sandia Test Protocols in order to identify any revisions needed in test procedures, conditions, or equipment and (b) gain experience with state-of-the-art DER equipment to determine if the tests put unrealistic or overly aggressive requirements on EUT operation. In performing the work according to the current versions of the protocols, Sandia was able to identify weaknesses in the current versions and suggest improvements to the test protocols.

  5. Protocol Improvements for Low Concentration DNA-Based Bioaerosol Sampling and Analysis

    PubMed Central

    Ng, Chun Kiat; Miller, Dana; Cao, Bin

    2015-01-01

    Introduction As bioaerosol research attracts increasing attention, there is a need for additional efforts that focus on method development to deal with different environmental samples. Bioaerosol environmental samples typically have very low biomass concentrations in the air, which often leaves researchers with limited options in choosing the downstream analysis steps, especially when culture-independent methods are intended. Objectives This study investigates the impacts of three important factors that can influence the performance of culture-independent DNA-based analysis in dealing with bioaerosol environmental samples engaged in this study. The factors are: 1) enhanced high temperature sonication during DNA extraction; 2) effect of sampling duration on DNA recoverability; and 3) an alternative method for concentrating composite samples. In this study, DNA extracted from samples was analysed using the Qubit fluorometer (for direct total DNA measurement) and quantitative polymerase chain reaction (qPCR). Results and Findings The findings suggest that additional lysis from high temperature sonication is crucial: DNA yields from both high and low biomass samples increased up to 600% when the protocol included 30-min sonication at 65°C. Long air sampling duration on a filter media was shown to have a negative impact on DNA recoverability with up to 98% of DNA lost over a 20-h sampling period. Pooling DNA from separate samples during extraction was proven to be feasible with margins of error below 30%. PMID:26619279

  6. An improved technique for isolating codominant compound microsatellite markers.

    PubMed

    Lian, Chunlan L; Abdul Wadud, Md; Geng, Qifang; Shimatani, Kenichiro; Hogetsu, Taizo

    2006-07-01

    An approach for developing codominant polymorphic markers (compound microsatellite (SSR) markers), with substantial time and cost savings, is introduced in this paper. In this technique, fragments flanked by a compound SSR sequence at one end were amplified from the constructed DNA library using compound SSR primer (AC)6(AG)5 or (TC)6(AC)5 and an adaptor primer for the suppression-PCR. A locus-specific primer was designed from the sequence flanking the compound SSR. The primer pairs of the locus-specific and compound SSR primers were used as a compound SSR marker. Because only one locus-specific primer was needed for design of each marker and only a common compound SSR primer was needed as the fluorescence-labeled primer for analyzing all the compound SSR markers, this approach substantially reduced the cost of developing codominant markers and analyzing their polymorphism. We have demonstrated this technique for Dendropanax trifidus and easily developed 11 codominant markers with high polymorphism for D. trifidus. Use of the technique for successful isolation of codominant compound SSR markers for several other plant species is currently in progress.

  7. Network protocol changes can improve DisCom WAN performance : evaluating TCP modifications and SCTP in the ASC tri-lab environment.

    SciTech Connect

    Tolendino, Lawrence F.; Hu, Tan Chang

    2005-06-01

    The Advanced Simulation and Computing (ASC) Distance Computing (DisCom) Wide Area Network (WAN) is a high performance, long distance network environment that is based on the ubiquitous TCP/IP protocol set. However, the Transmission Control Protocol (TCP) and the algorithms that govern its operation were defined almost two decades ago for a network environment vastly different from the DisCom WAN. In this paper we explore and evaluate possible modifications to TCP that purport to improve TCP performance in environments like the DisCom WAN. We also examine a much newer protocol, SCTP (Stream Control Transmission Protocol) that claims to provide reliable network transport while also implementing multi-streaming, multi-homing capabilities that are appealing in the DisCom high performance network environment. We provide performance comparisons and recommendations for continued development that will lead to network communications protocol implementations capable of supporting the coming ASC Petaflop computing environments.

  8. Equine chorionic gonadotropin improves the efficacy of a timed artificial insemination protocol in buffalo during the nonbreeding season.

    PubMed

    Carvalho, N A T; Soares, J G; Porto Filho, R M; Gimenes, L U; Souza, D C; Nichi, M; Sales, J S; Baruselli, P S

    2013-02-01

    Two experiments were conducted to evaluate the effects of equine chorionic gonadotropin (eCG) treatment on ovarian follicular response, luteal function, and pregnancy in buffaloes subjected to a timed artificial insemination (TAI) protocol during the nonbreeding season. In experiment 1, 59 buffalo cows were randomly assigned to two groups (with and without eCG). On the first day of the synchronization protocol (Day 0), cows received an intravaginal progesterone (P4) device plus 2.0 mg estradiol benzoate im. On Day 9, the P4 device was removed, all cows were given 0.150 mg PGF(2α) im, and half were given 400 IU eCG im. On Day 11, all cows were given 10 μg of buserelin acetate im (GnRH). Transrectal ultrasonography of the ovaries was performed on Days 0 and 9 to determine the presence and diameter of the largest follicle; between Days 11 and 14 (12 hours apart), to evaluate the dominant follicle diameter and the interval from device removal to ovulation; and on Days 16, 20, and 24 to measure CL diameter. Blood samples were collected on Days 16, 20, and 24 to measure serum P4. In experiment 2, 256 buffaloes were assigned to the same treatments described in experiment 1, and TAI was performed 16 hours after GnRH treatment. Pregnancy diagnosis was performed by ultrasonography 30 days after TAI. Treatment with eCG increased the maximum diameter of dominant follicles (P = 0.09), ovulation rate (P = 0.05), CL diameter (P = 0.03), and P4 concentrations (P = 0.01) 4 days after TAI, and pregnancy per AI (52.7%, 68/129 vs. 39.4%, 50/127; P = 0.03). Therefore, eCG improved ovarian follicular response, luteal function during the subsequent diestrus, and fertility for buffalo subjected to a TAI synchronization protocol during the nonbreeding season.

  9. Development of a training protocol to improve reading performance in peripheral vision

    PubMed Central

    Yu, Deyue; Legge, Gordon E.; Park, Heejung; Gage, Emily; Chung, Susana T. L.

    2009-01-01

    People with central-field loss must use peripheral vision for reading. Previous studies have shown that reading performance in peripheral vision can improve with extensive practice on a trigram letter-recognition task. The present study compared training on this task with training on two other character-based tasks (lexical decision and RSVP (Rapid Serial Visual Presentation) reading) which might plausibly produce more improvement in peripheral reading speed. Twenty-eight normally sighted young adults were trained at 10° in the lower visual field in a pre/post design. All three training methods produced significant improvements in reading speed, with average gains of 39% for lexical-decision, 54% for trigram letter-recognition, and 72% for RSVP training. Although the RSVP training was most effective, the lexical-decision task has the advantage of easy self administration making it more practical for home-based training. PMID:19819251

  10. Trial protocol OPPTIMUM– Does progesterone prophylaxis for the prevention of preterm labour improve outcome?

    PubMed Central

    2012-01-01

    Background Preterm birth is a global problem, with a prevalence of 8 to 12% depending on location. Several large trials and systematic reviews have shown progestogens to be effective in preventing or delaying preterm birth in selected high risk women with a singleton pregnancy (including those with a short cervix or previous preterm birth). Although an improvement in short term neonatal outcomes has been shown in some trials these have not consistently been confirmed in meta-analyses. Additionally data on longer term outcomes is limited to a single trial where no difference in outcomes was demonstrated at four years of age of the child, despite those in the “progesterone” group having a lower incidence of preterm birth. Methods/Design The OPPTIMUM study is a double blind randomized placebo controlled trial to determine whether progesterone prophylaxis to prevent preterm birth has long term neonatal or infant benefit. Specifically it will study whether, in women with singleton pregnancy and at high risk of preterm labour, prophylactic vaginal natural progesterone, 200 mg daily from 22 – 34 weeks gestation, compared to placebo, improves obstetric outcome by lengthening pregnancy thus reducing the incidence of preterm delivery (before 34 weeks), improves neonatal outcome by reducing a composite of death and major morbidity, and leads to improved childhood cognitive and neurosensory outcomes at two years of age. Recruitment began in 2009 and is scheduled to close in Spring 2013. As of May 2012, over 800 women had been randomized in 60 sites. Discussion OPPTIMUM will provide further evidence on the effectiveness of vaginal progesterone for prevention of preterm birth and improvement of neonatal outcomes in selected groups of women with singleton pregnancy at high risk of preterm birth. Additionally it will determine whether any reduction in the incidence of preterm birth is accompanied by improved childhood outcome. Trial registration ISRCTN14568373 PMID

  11. Implementing performance improvement in New Zealand emergency departments: the six hour time target policy national research project protocol

    PubMed Central

    2012-01-01

    Background In May 2009, the New Zealand government announced a new policy aimed at improving the quality of Emergency Department care and whole hospital performance. Governments have increasingly looked to time targets as a mechanism for improving hospital performance and from a whole system perspective, using the Emergency Department waiting time as a performance measure has the potential to see improvements in the wider health system. However, the imposition of targets may have significant adverse consequences. There is little empirical work examining how the performance of the wider hospital system is affected by such a target. This project aims to answer the following questions: How has the introduction of the target affected broader hospital performance over time, and what accounts for these changes? Which initiatives and strategies have been successful in moving hospitals towards the target without compromising the quality of other care processes and patient outcomes? Is there a difference in outcomes between different ethnic and age groups? Which initiatives and strategies have the greatest potential to be transferred across organisational contexts? Methods/design The study design is mixed methods; combining qualitative research into the behaviour and practices of specific case study hospitals with quantitative data on clinical outcomes and process measures of performance over the period 2006-2012. All research activity is guided by a Kaupapa Māori Research methodological approach. A dynamic systems model of acute patient flows was created to frame the study. Consequences of the target (positive and negative) will be explored by integrating analyses and insights gained from the quantitative and qualitative streams of the study. Discussion At the time of submission of this protocol, the project has been underway for 12 months. This time was necessary to finalise both the case study sites and the secondary outcomes through key stakeholder consultation. We

  12. Improvement of Electrical Stimulation Protocol for Simultaneous Measurement of Extracellular Potential with On-Chip Multi-Electrode Array System

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kaneko, Tomoyuki; Nomura, Fumimasa; Hattori, Akihiro; Yasuda, Kenji

    2012-06-01

    Cardiotoxicity testing with a multi-electrode array (MEA) system requires the stable beating of cardiomyocytes for the measurement of the field potential duration (FPD), because different spontaneous beating rates cause different responses of FPD prolongation induced by drugs, and the beating rate change effected by drugs complicates the FPD prolongation assessment. We have developed an on-chip MEA system with electrical stimulation for the measurement of the FPD during the stable beating of human embryonic stem (ES) cell-derived cardiomyocyte clusters. Using a conventional bipolar stimulation protocol, we observed such large artifacts in electrical stimulation that we could not estimate the FPD quantitatively. Therefore, we improved the stimulation protocol by using sequential rectangular pulses in which the positive and negative stimulation voltages and number of pulses could be changed flexibly. The balanced voltages and number of pulses for sequential rectangular pulses enabled the recording of small negative artifacts only, which hardly affected the FPD measurement of human-ES-cell-derived cardiomyocyte clusters. These conditions of electrical stimulation are expected to find applications for the control of constant beating for cardiotoxicity testing.

  13. Development of an improved vaccine evaluation protocol to compare the efficacy of Newcastle disease vaccines

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    The failure to control and to eradicate Newcastle Disease (ND) with vaccination alone in countries where the etiological agent of the disease, virulent Newcastle Disease Virus (vNDV) is endemic underscores the need to improve the efficacy of currently available NDV vaccines and vaccination approache...

  14. The agricultural model intercomparison and improvement project (AgMIP): Protocols and pilot studies

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    The Agricultural Model Intercomparison and Improvement Project (AgMIP) is a distributed climate-scenario simulation research activity for historical period model intercomparison and future climate change conditions with participation of multiple crop and agricultural economic model groups around the...

  15. MObile Technology for Improved Family Planning Services (MOTIF): study protocol for a randomised controlled trial

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    Background Providing women with contraceptive methods following abortion is important to reduce repeat abortion rates, yet evidence for effective post-abortion family planning interventions are limited. This protocol outlines the evaluation of a mobile phone-based intervention using voice messages to support post-abortion family planning in Cambodia. Methods/Design A single blind randomised controlled trial of 500 participants. Clients aged 18 or over, attending for abortion at four Marie Stopes International clinics in Cambodia, owning a mobile phone and not wishing to have a child at the current time are randomised to the mobile phone-based intervention or control (standard care) with a 1:1 allocation ratio. The intervention comprises a series of six automated voice messages to remind clients about available family planning methods and provide a conduit for additional support. Clients can respond to message prompts to request a phone call from a counsellor, or alternatively to state they have no problems. Clients requesting to talk to a counsellor, or who do not respond to the message prompts, receive a call from a Marie Stopes International Cambodia counsellor who provides individualised advice and support regarding family planning. The duration of the intervention is 3 months. The control group receive existing standard of care without the additional mobile phone-based support. We hypothesise that the intervention will remind clients about contraceptive methods available, identify problems with side effects early and provide support, and therefore increase use of post-abortion family planning, while reducing discontinuation and unsafe method switching. Participants are assessed at baseline and at 4 months. The primary outcome measure is use of an effective modern contraceptive method at 4 months post abortion. Secondary outcome measures include contraception use, pregnancy and repeat abortion over the 4-month post-abortion period. Risk ratios will be used as

  16. Protocol: Optimised methodology for isolation of nuclei from leaves of species in the Solanaceae and Rosaceae families

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    In this study, a protocol is described for rapid preparation of an enriched, reasonably pure fraction of nuclear proteins from the leaves of tobacco (Nicotiana tabacum), potato (Solanum tuberosum) and apple (Malus domestica). The protocol gives reproducible results and can be carried out quickly in 2 hours. Tissue extracts clarified with filtration were treated with non-ionic detergent (Triton X-100) to lyse membranes of contaminating organelles. Nuclei were collected from a 60% Percoll layer of density gradient following low-speed centrifugation. Western blot analysis using antibodies to marker proteins of organelles indicated that the nuclear protein fractions were highly enriched and free or nearly free of proteins from the endoplasmic reticulum and chloroplasts. PMID:23886449

  17. A modified ultra-long pituitary downregulation protocol improved endometrial receptivity and clinical outcome for infertile patients with polycystic ovarian syndrome

    PubMed Central

    GONG, FEI; LI, XIHONG; ZHANG, SHUNJI; MA, HAINAN; CAI, SUFEN; LI, JUAN; LIN, GE; LU, GUANGXIU

    2015-01-01

    There are currently various protocols for in vitro fertilization (IVF). For patients with polycystic ovarian syndrome (PCOS), an optimized protocol for the downregulation of pituitary follicle stimulating hormone and luteinizing hormone via gonadotropin-releasing hormone agonist (GnRHa) remains a challenge. In the present study, the primary endpoint of an ultra-long and a conventional long GnRHa protocol for intracytoplasmic sperm injection/IVF treatments of patients with PCOS was retrospectively compared. In the modified ultra-long protocol group, endometrial thickness, morphology, and blood flow were significantly improved, as compared with in the conventional long protocol group. Furthermore, the serum progestogen (P) concentrations and P/estrogen (E2) [(Px1,000/E2)] ratio on the day of human chorionic gonadotrophin administration were significantly decreased in the modified ultra-long downregulation group, whereas the pregnancy and implantation rates were significantly higher. There were no significant differences in the average number of obtained oocytes, good quality embryo rates, cancel rates, fertilization rates, abortion rates, serious ovarian hyperstimulation syndrome incidences, ectopic pregnancy rates or gonadotropin (Gn) dosages between the two groups. These results suggest that the modified ultra-long protocol plus human menopausal Gn medication may be superior to the conventional long protocol, and may lead to improved implantation and pregnancy outcomes for infertile patients with PCOS. PMID:26640563

  18. A modified ultra-long pituitary downregulation protocol improved endometrial receptivity and clinical outcome for infertile patients with polycystic ovarian syndrome.

    PubMed

    Gong, Fei; Li, Xihong; Zhang, Shunji; Ma, Hainan; Cai, Sufen; Li, Juan; Lin, G E; Lu, Guangxiu

    2015-11-01

    There are currently various protocols for in vitro fertilization (IVF). For patients with polycystic ovarian syndrome (PCOS), an optimized protocol for the downregulation of pituitary follicle stimulating hormone and luteinizing hormone via gonadotropin-releasing hormone agonist (GnRHa) remains a challenge. In the present study, the primary endpoint of an ultra-long and a conventional long GnRHa protocol for intracytoplasmic sperm injection/IVF treatments of patients with PCOS was retrospectively compared. In the modified ultra-long protocol group, endometrial thickness, morphology, and blood flow were significantly improved, as compared with in the conventional long protocol group. Furthermore, the serum progestogen (P) concentrations and P/estrogen (E2) [(Px1,000/E2)] ratio on the day of human chorionic gonadotrophin administration were significantly decreased in the modified ultra-long downregulation group, whereas the pregnancy and implantation rates were significantly higher. There were no significant differences in the average number of obtained oocytes, good quality embryo rates, cancel rates, fertilization rates, abortion rates, serious ovarian hyperstimulation syndrome incidences, ectopic pregnancy rates or gonadotropin (Gn) dosages between the two groups. These results suggest that the modified ultra-long protocol plus human menopausal Gn medication may be superior to the conventional long protocol, and may lead to improved implantation and pregnancy outcomes for infertile patients with PCOS.

  19. Improving the efficiency of isolated microspore culture in six-row spring barley: I-optimization of key physical factors.

    PubMed

    Esteves, Patricio; Belzile, François

    2014-06-01

    An improved isolated microspore culture protocol alleviating the recalcitrance typically observed in six-row spring barley was developed by optimizing four key physical factors to increase embryogenesis and reduce albinism. Doubled haploid (DH) plants are completely homozygous individuals that can be generated in just a few months via androgenesis in vitro. DHs are useful tools in genetic research and in plant breeding. Isolated microspore culture (IMC) is the most efficient way to produce DHs, but a strong genotype dependency imposes limitations to its wide application. Six-row, spring barley genotypes are considered as particularly recalcitrant due to a low frequency of embryogenesis and a high rate of albinism. Seeking to develop an efficient IMC protocol for this type of barley, we explored four important factors: (1) the harvest stage of immature spikes, (2) the type of pretreatment applied, (3) the osmotic potential in the induction medium, and (4) the plating density of microspores. This work was first performed using four barley genotypes: two typical six-row spring cultivars (ACCA and Léger), a two-row spring (Gobernadora) and a two-row winter (Igri) cultivar. First, by optimizing the harvest stage for each genotype we obtained a twofold to fourfold increase in the yield of embryogenic microspores. Second, two pretreatments (0.3 M mannitol for 2 days, or a combination of cold and heat over 15 days) both performed significantly better than the commonly used cold pretreatment (28 days at 4 °C). Third, an induction medium-containing mannitol (32 g/l) doubled green plant regeneration. Fourth, a plating density of 10(6) microspores/ml yielded the highest number of green regenerated plants. Our most important findings were then confirmed using sets of F1s from a six-row, spring-type breeding program.

  20. A Comparative Analysis of Transmission Control Protocol Improvement Techniques over Space-Based Transmission Media

    DTIC Science & Technology

    2006-03-01

    www.c4isrjournal.com/story.php?F=852484. Durst , Robert C., Gregory J. Miller, and Eric J. Travis. “TCP Extensions for Space Communications.” Wireless Networks...Corporation, MCI, NASA, and the DoD ( Durst , Miller, and Travis, 1997:389). As with most TCP improvement efforts, SCPS-TP was created to overcome...Selective Negative Acknowledgements (SNACKs), TCP Timestamps, window scale modifications, and the TCP Vegas congestion control algorithms ( Durst , Miller

  1. Text Messaging to Improve Hypertension Medication Adherence in African Americans: BPMED Intervention Development and Study Protocol

    PubMed Central

    Artinian, Nancy T; Schwiebert, Loren; Yarandi, Hossein; Levy, Phillip D

    2015-01-01

    Background Hypertension (HTN) is a major public health concern in the United States, with almost 78 million Americans age 20 years and over suffering from the condition. Moreover, HTN is a key risk factor for health disease and stroke. African Americans disproportionately shoulder the burdens of HTN, with greater prevalence, disease severity, earlier onset, and more HTN-related complications than age-matched whites. Medication adherence for the treatment of HTN is poor, with estimates indicating that only about half of hypertensive patients are adherent to prescribed medication regimens. Although no single intervention for improving medication adherence has emerged as superior to others, text message medication reminders have the potential to help improve medication adherence in African Americans with uncontrolled HTN as mobile phone adoption is very high in this population. Objective The purpose of this two-phased study was to develop (Phase I) and test in a randomized controlled trial (RCT) (Phase II) a text message system, BPMED, to improve the quality of medication management through increasing medication adherence in African Americans with uncontrolled HTN. Methods In Phase I, we recruited 16 target end-users from a primary care clinic, to assist in the development of BPMED through participating in one of three focus groups. Focus groups sought to gain patient perspectives on HTN, medication adherence, mobile phone use, and the use of text messaging to support medication adherence. Potential intervention designs were presented to participants, and feedback on the designs was solicited. In Phase II, we conducted two pilot RCTs to determine the feasibility, acceptability, and preliminary efficacy of BPMED in primary care and emergency department settings. Both pilot studies recruited approximately 60 participants, who were randomized equally between usual care and the BPMED intervention. Results Although data collection is now complete, data analysis from the

  2. An improved protocol for sequencing of repetitive genomic regions and structural variations using mutagenesis and next generation sequencing.

    PubMed

    Sipos, Botond; Massingham, Tim; Stütz, Adrian M; Goldman, Nick

    2012-01-01

    The rise of Next Generation Sequencing (NGS) technologies has transformed de novo genome sequencing into an accessible research tool, but obtaining high quality eukaryotic genome assemblies remains a challenge, mostly due to the abundance of repetitive elements. These also make it difficult to study nucleotide polymorphism in repetitive regions, including certain types of structural variations. One solution proposed for resolving such regions is Sequence Assembly aided by Mutagenesis (SAM), which relies on the fact that introducing enough random mutations breaks the repetitive structure, making assembly possible. Sequencing many different mutated copies permits the sequence of the repetitive region to be inferred by consensus methods. However, this approach relies on molecular cloning in order to isolate and amplify individual mutant copies, making it hard to scale-up the approach for use in conjunction with high-throughput sequencing technologies. To address this problem, we propose NG-SAM, a modified version of the SAM protocol that relies on PCR and dilution steps only, coupled to a NGS workflow. NG-SAM therefore has the potential to be scaled-up, e.g. using emerging microfluidics technologies. We built a realistic simulation pipeline to study the feasibility of NG-SAM, and our results suggest that under appropriate experimental conditions the approach might be successfully put into practice. Moreover, our simulations suggest that NG-SAM is capable of reconstructing robustly a wide range of potential target sequences of varying lengths and repetitive structures.

  3. A Comprehensive Protocol for Improving the Description of Saprolegniales (Oomycota): Two Practical Examples (Saprolegnia aenigmatica sp. nov. and Saprolegnia racemosa sp. nov.)

    PubMed Central

    Sandoval-Sierra, Jose Vladimir; Diéguez-Uribeondo, Javier

    2015-01-01

    The description, identification and classification of organisms are the pillar in biodiversity and evolutionary studies. The fungal-like organism Saprolegnia contains important animal pathogens. However, its taxonomy is weak, making it difficult to perform further studies. This problem mainly arises from the unavailability of suitable holotypes. We propose a standardized protocol for describing Saprolegnia spp. that includes good cultural practices and proper holotype preservation. In order to illustrate this new proposal, we describe two species, Saprolegnia aenigmatica sp. nov. and Saprolegnia racemosa sp. nov., based on the recently described molecular operational taxonomic units (MOTUs), phylogenetic relationships, and the analyses of morphological features. We show that they belong to two different MOTUs that are grouped into two sister clades. Morphologically, we find that S. racemosa exhibits a species-specific character, i.e., aggrupation of oogonia in racemes, while S. aenigmatica does not have any specific characters. Analyses of a combined set of characters, i.e., length and breadth of sporangia, length/breadth ratio (l/b) of oogonia, cyst and oospore diameter, and the number of oospores per oogomium, allow distinguishing these two species. To improve Saprolegnia taxonomy, we propose to incorporate into the protologue: (i) several isolates of the new species; (ii) the rDNA sequences to compare them to data-bases of Saprolegnia sequences of reference; (iii) a phylogenetic analysis to check relationships with other species; (iv) to preserve holotypes in absolute ethanol and to include lyophilized material from holotype; and (v) the ex-type as a pure culture from single-spore isolates stored in at least two different collections. PMID:26186364

  4. A Mediterranean Diet to Improve Cardiovascular and Cognitive Health: Protocol for a Randomised Controlled Intervention Study.

    PubMed

    Wade, Alexandra T; Davis, Courtney R; Dyer, Kathryn A; Hodgson, Jonathan M; Woodman, Richard J; Keage, Hannah A D; Murphy, Karen J

    2017-02-16

    The Mediterranean diet has demonstrated efficacy for improving cardiovascular and cognitive health. However, a traditional Mediterranean diet delivers fewer serves of dairy and less dietary calcium than is currently recommended in Australia, which may limit long-term sustainability. The present study aims to evaluate whether a Mediterranean diet with adequate dairy and calcium can improve cardiovascular and cognitive function in an at-risk population, and thereby reduce risk of cardiovascular disease (CVD) and cognitive decline. A randomised, controlled, parallel, crossover design trial will compare a Mediterranean diet supplemented with dairy foods against a low-fat control diet. Forty participants with systolic blood pressure above 120 mmHg and at least two other risk factors of CVD will undertake each dietary intervention for eight weeks, with an eight-week washout period between interventions. Systolic blood pressure will be the primary measure of interest. Secondary outcomes will include measures of cardiometabolic health, dietary compliance, cognitive function, assessed using the Cambridge Neuropsychological Test Automated Battery (CANTAB), psychological well-being and dementia risk. This research will provide empirical evidence as to whether the Mediterranean diet can be modified to provide recommended dairy and calcium intakes while continuing to deliver positive effects for cardiovascular and cognitive health. The findings will hold relevance for the field of preventative healthcare and may contribute to revisions of national dietary guidelines.

  5. A Mediterranean Diet to Improve Cardiovascular and Cognitive Health: Protocol for a Randomised Controlled Intervention Study

    PubMed Central

    Wade, Alexandra T.; Davis, Courtney R.; Dyer, Kathryn A.; Hodgson, Jonathan M.; Woodman, Richard J.; Keage, Hannah A. D.; Murphy, Karen J.

    2017-01-01

    The Mediterranean diet has demonstrated efficacy for improving cardiovascular and cognitive health. However, a traditional Mediterranean diet delivers fewer serves of dairy and less dietary calcium than is currently recommended in Australia, which may limit long-term sustainability. The present study aims to evaluate whether a Mediterranean diet with adequate dairy and calcium can improve cardiovascular and cognitive function in an at-risk population, and thereby reduce risk of cardiovascular disease (CVD) and cognitive decline. A randomised, controlled, parallel, crossover design trial will compare a Mediterranean diet supplemented with dairy foods against a low-fat control diet. Forty participants with systolic blood pressure above 120 mmHg and at least two other risk factors of CVD will undertake each dietary intervention for eight weeks, with an eight-week washout period between interventions. Systolic blood pressure will be the primary measure of interest. Secondary outcomes will include measures of cardiometabolic health, dietary compliance, cognitive function, assessed using the Cambridge Neuropsychological Test Automated Battery (CANTAB), psychological well-being and dementia risk. This research will provide empirical evidence as to whether the Mediterranean diet can be modified to provide recommended dairy and calcium intakes while continuing to deliver positive effects for cardiovascular and cognitive health. The findings will hold relevance for the field of preventative healthcare and may contribute to revisions of national dietary guidelines. PMID:28212320

  6. Improving community ambulation after hip fracture: protocol for a randomised, controlled trial

    PubMed Central

    Orwig, D; Mangione, KK; Baumgarten, M; Terrin, M; Fortinsky, R; Kenny, AM; Gruber-Baldini, AL; Beamer, B; Tosteson, ANA; Shardell, M; Magder, L; Binder, E; Koval, K; Resnick, B; Craik, RL; Magaziner, J

    2017-01-01

    , or if the participant has low potential to benefit from the interventions. Interventions Participants are randomly assigned to one of two multi-component treatment groups: PUSH or PULSE. PUSH is based on aerobic conditioning, specificity of training, and muscle overload, while PULSE includes transcutaneous electrical nerve stimulation, flexibility activities, and active range of motion exercises. Participants in both groups receive 32 visits in their place of residence from a study physiotherapist (two visits per week on non-consecutive days for 16 weeks). The physiotherapists’ adherence to the treatment protocol, and the participants’ receipt of the prescribed activities are assessed. Participants also receive counselling from a registered dietician and vitamin D, calcium and multivitamin supplements during the 16-week intervention period. Measurements The primary outcome (community ambulation) is the ability to walk 300 m or more in 6 minutes, as assessed by the 6-minute walk test, at 16 weeks after randomisation. Other measures at 16 and 40 weeks include cost-effectiveness, endurance, dynamic balance, walking speed, quadriceps strength, lower extremity function, activities of daily living, balance confidence, quality of life, physical activity, depressive symptoms, increase of ≥ 50 m in distance walked in 6 minutes, cognitive status, and nutritional status. Analysis Analyses for all aims will be performed according to the intention-to-treat paradigm. Except for testing of the primary hypothesis, all statistical tests will be two-sided and not adjusted for multiple comparisons. The test of the primary hypothesis (comparing groups on the proportion who are community ambulators at 16 weeks after randomisation) will be based on a one-sided 0.025-level hypothesis test using a procedure consisting of four interim analyses and one final analysis with critical values chosen by a Hwang-Shih-Decani alpha-spending function. Analyses will be performed to test group

  7. Intervention to improve social and family support for caregivers of dependent patients: ICIAS study protocol

    PubMed Central

    2014-01-01

    Background Despite the existence of formal professional support services, informal support (mainly family members) continues to be the main source of eldercare, especially for those who are dependent or disabled. Professionals on the primary health care are the ideal choice to educate, provide psychological support, and help to mobilize social resources available to the informal caregiver. Controversy remains concerning the efficiency of multiple interventions, taking a holistic approach to both the patient and caregiver, and optimum utilization of the available community resources. .For this reason our goal is to assess whether an intervention designed to improve the social support for caregivers effectively decreases caregivers burden and improves their quality of life. Methods/design Design: Controlled, multicentre, community intervention trial, with patients and their caregivers randomized to the intervention or control group according to their assigned Primary Health Care Team (PHCT). Study area: Primary Health Care network (9 PHCTs). Study participants: Primary informal caregivers of patients receiving home health care from participating PHCTs. Sample: Required sample size is 282 caregivers (141 from PHCTs randomized to the intervention group and 141 from PHCTs randomized to the control group. Intervention: a) PHCT professionals: standardized training to implement caregivers intervention. b) Caregivers: 1 individualized counselling session, 1 family session, and 4 educational group sessions conducted by participating PHCT professionals; in addition to usual home health care visits, periodic telephone follow-up contact and unlimited telephone support. Control: Caregivers and dependent patients: usual home health care, consisting of bimonthly scheduled visits, follow-up as needed, and additional attention upon request. Data analysis Dependent variables: Caregiver burden (short-form Zarit test), caregivers’ social support (Medical Outcomes Study), and

  8. Protocol for using mixed methods and process improvement methodologies to explore primary care receptionist work

    PubMed Central

    Litchfield, Ian; Gale, Nicola; Burrows, Michael; Greenfield, Sheila

    2016-01-01

    Introduction The need to cope with an increasingly ageing and multimorbid population has seen a shift towards preventive health and effective management of chronic disease. This places general practice at the forefront of health service provision with an increased demand that impacts on all members of the practice team. As these pressures grow, systems become more complex and tasks delegated across a broader range of staff groups. These include receptionists who play an essential role in the successful functioning of the surgery and are a major influence on patient satisfaction. However, they do so without formal recognition of the clinical implications of their work or with any requirements for training and qualifications. Methods and analysis Our work consists of three phases. The first will survey receptionists using the validated Work Design Questionnaire to help us understand more precisely the parameters of their role; the second involves the use of iterative focus groups to help define the systems and processes within which they work. The third and final phase will produce recommendations to increase the efficiency and safety of the key practice processes involving receptionists and identify the areas and where receptionists require targeted support. In doing so, we aim to increase job satisfaction of receptionists, improve practice efficiency and produce better outcomes for patients. Ethics and dissemination Our work will be disseminated using conferences, workshops, trade journals, electronic media and through a series of publications in the peer reviewed literature. At the very least, our work will serve to prompt discussion on the clinical role of receptionists and assess the advantages of using value streams in conjunction with related tools for process improvement. PMID:27852720

  9. AN IMPROVED CELL ISOLATION METHOD FOR FLOW CYTOMETRIC AND FUNCTIONAL ANALYSES OF CUTANEOUS WOUND LEUKOCYTES

    PubMed Central

    Brubaker, Aleah L.; Schneider, David F.; Palmer, Jessica L.; Faunce, Douglas E.; Kovacs, Elizabeth J.

    2011-01-01

    Isolation of leukocytes from full-thickness excisional wounds has proven to be a difficult process that results in poor cell yield and holds significant limitations for functional assays. Given the increased interest in the isolation, characterization and functional measurements of wound-derived cell populations, herein we describe a method for preparing wound cell suspensions with an improved yield that enables both phenotypic and functional assessments. PMID:21889511

  10. A decade of improvements in Mimiviridae and Marseilleviridae isolation from amoeba.

    PubMed

    Pagnier, Isabelle; Reteno, Dorine-Gaelle Ikanga; Saadi, Hanene; Boughalmi, Mondher; Gaia, Morgan; Slimani, Meriem; Ngounga, Tatsiana; Bekliz, Meriem; Colson, Philippe; Raoult, Didier; La Scola, Bernard

    2013-01-01

    Since the isolation of the first giant virus, the Mimivirus, by T.J. Rowbotham in a cooling tower in Bradford, UK, and after its characterisation by our group in 2003, we have continued to develop novel strategies to isolate additional strains. By first focusing on cooling towers using our original time-consuming procedure, we were able to isolate a new lineage of giant virus called Marseillevirus and a new Mimivirus strain called Mamavirus. In the following years, we have accumulated the world's largest unique collection of giant viruses by improving the use of antibiotic combinations to avoid bacterial contamination of amoeba, developing strategies of preliminary screening of samples by molecular methods, and using a high-throughput isolation method developed by our group. Based on the inoculation of nearly 7,000 samples, our collection currently contains 43 strains of Mimiviridae (14 in lineage A, 6 in lineage B, and 23 in lineage C) and 17 strains of Marseilleviridae isolated from various environments, including 3 of human origin. This study details the procedures used to build this collection and paves the way for the high-throughput isolation of new isolates to improve the record of giant virus distribution in the environment and the determination of their pangenome.

  11. Triton Hodge Test: Improved Protocol for Modified Hodge Test for Enhanced Detection of NDM and Other Carbapenemase Producers

    PubMed Central

    Pasteran, Fernando; Gonzalez, Lisandro J.; Albornoz, Ezequiel; Bahr, Guillermo; Vila, Alejandro J.

    2015-01-01

    Accurate detection of carbapenemase-producing Gram-negative bacilli is of utmost importance for the control of nosocomial spread and the initiation of appropriate antimicrobial therapy. The modified Hodge test (MHT), a carbapenem inactivation assay, has shown poor sensitivity in detecting the worldwide spread of New Delhi metallo-β-lactamase (NDM). Recent studies demonstrated that NDM is a lipoprotein anchored to the outer membrane in Gram-negative bacteria, unlike all other known carbapenemases. Here we report that membrane anchoring of β-lactamases precludes detection of carbapenemase activity by the MHT. We also show that this limitation can be overcome by the addition of Triton X-100 during the test, which allows detection of NDM. We propose an improved version of the assay, called the Triton Hodge test (THT), which allows detection of membrane-bound carbapenemases with the addition of this nonionic surfactant. This test was challenged with a panel of 185 clinical isolates (145 carrying known carbapenemase-encoding genes and 40 carbapenemase nonproducers). The THT displayed test sensitivity of >90% against NDM-producing clinical isolates, while improving performance against other carbapenemases. Ertapenem provided the highest sensitivity (97 to 100%, depending on the type of carbapenemase), followed by meropenem (92.5 to 100%). Test specificity was not affected by the addition of Triton (87.5% and 92.5% with ertapenem and meropenem, respectively). This simple inexpensive test confers a large improvement to the sensitivity of the MHT for the detection of NDM and other carbapenemases. PMID:26719442

  12. Triton Hodge Test: Improved Protocol for Modified Hodge Test for Enhanced Detection of NDM and Other Carbapenemase Producers.

    PubMed

    Pasteran, Fernando; Gonzalez, Lisandro J; Albornoz, Ezequiel; Bahr, Guillermo; Vila, Alejandro J; Corso, Alejandra

    2016-03-01

    Accurate detection of carbapenemase-producing Gram-negative bacilli is of utmost importance for the control of nosocomial spread and the initiation of appropriate antimicrobial therapy. The modified Hodge test (MHT), a carbapenem inactivation assay, has shown poor sensitivity in detecting the worldwide spread of New Delhi metallo-β-lactamase (NDM). Recent studies demonstrated that NDM is a lipoprotein anchored to the outer membrane in Gram-negative bacteria, unlike all other known carbapenemases. Here we report that membrane anchoring of β-lactamases precludes detection of carbapenemase activity by the MHT. We also show that this limitation can be overcome by the addition of Triton X-100 during the test, which allows detection of NDM. We propose an improved version of the assay, called the Triton Hodge test (THT), which allows detection of membrane-bound carbapenemases with the addition of this nonionic surfactant. This test was challenged with a panel of 185 clinical isolates (145 carrying known carbapenemase-encoding genes and 40 carbapenemase nonproducers). The THT displayed test sensitivity of >90% against NDM-producing clinical isolates, while improving performance against other carbapenemases. Ertapenem provided the highest sensitivity (97 to 100%, depending on the type of carbapenemase), followed by meropenem (92.5 to 100%). Test specificity was not affected by the addition of Triton (87.5% and 92.5% with ertapenem and meropenem, respectively). This simple inexpensive test confers a large improvement to the sensitivity of the MHT for the detection of NDM and other carbapenemases.

  13. One-day pulsed-field gel electrophoresis protocol for rapid determination of emetic Bacillus cereus isolates.

    PubMed

    Kaminska, Paulina S; Fiedoruk, Krzysztof; Jankowska, Dominika; Mahillon, Jacques; Nowosad, Karol; Drewicka, Ewa; Zambrzycka, Monika; Swiecicka, Izabela

    2015-04-01

    Bacillus cereus, the Gram-positive and spore-forming ubiquitous bacterium, may cause emesis as the result of food intoxication with cereulide, a heat-stable emetic toxin. Rapid determination of cereulide-positive B. cereus isolates is of highest importance due to consequences of this intoxication for human health and life. Here we present a 1-day pulsed-field gel electrophoresis for emetic B. cereus isolates, which allows rapid and efficient determination of their genomic relatedness and helps determining the source of intoxication in case of outbreaks caused by these bacilli.

  14. Manual-Protocol Inspired Technique for Improving Automated MR Image Segmentation during Label Fusion

    PubMed Central

    Bhagwat, Nikhil; Pipitone, Jon; Winterburn, Julie L.; Guo, Ting; Duerden, Emma G.; Voineskos, Aristotle N.; Lepage, Martin; Miller, Steven P.; Pruessner, Jens C.; Chakravarty, M. Mallar

    2016-01-01

    Recent advances in multi-atlas based algorithms address many of the previous limitations in model-based and probabilistic segmentation methods. However, at the label fusion stage, a majority of algorithms focus primarily on optimizing weight-maps associated with the atlas library based on a theoretical objective function that approximates the segmentation error. In contrast, we propose a novel method—Autocorrecting Walks over Localized Markov Random Fields (AWoL-MRF)—that aims at mimicking the sequential process of manual segmentation, which is the gold-standard for virtually all the segmentation methods. AWoL-MRF begins with a set of candidate labels generated by a multi-atlas segmentation pipeline as an initial label distribution and refines low confidence regions based on a localized Markov random field (L-MRF) model using a novel sequential inference process (walks). We show that AWoL-MRF produces state-of-the-art results with superior accuracy and robustness with a small atlas library compared to existing methods. We validate the proposed approach by performing hippocampal segmentations on three independent datasets: (1) Alzheimer's Disease Neuroimaging Database (ADNI); (2) First Episode Psychosis patient cohort; and (3) A cohort of preterm neonates scanned early in life and at term-equivalent age. We assess the improvement in the performance qualitatively as well as quantitatively by comparing AWoL-MRF with majority vote, STAPLE, and Joint Label Fusion methods. AWoL-MRF reaches a maximum accuracy of 0.881 (dataset 1), 0.897 (dataset 2), and 0.807 (dataset 3) based on Dice similarity coefficient metric, offering significant performance improvements with a smaller atlas library (< 10) over compared methods. We also evaluate the diagnostic utility of AWoL-MRF by analyzing the volume differences per disease category in the ADNI1: Complete Screening dataset. We have made the source code for AWoL-MRF public at: https://github.com/CobraLab/AWoL-MRF. PMID

  15. Improved protocol for somatic embryogenesis and calcium alginate encapsulation in Anethum graveolens L.: a medicinal herb.

    PubMed

    Dhir, Richa; Shekhawat, G S; Alam, Afroz

    2014-08-01

    An improved procedure has been developed for efficient somatic embryogenesis in Anethum graveolens. Green friable embryogenic callus was obtained from hypocotyl segments on medium augmented with 2,4-dichlorophenoxyacetic acid (2,4-D). The highest embryogenic callus induction frequency of 87 % was obtained on Murashige and Skoog (MS) medium containing 1.13 μM 2,4-D. At lower concentration of 2,4-D (0.34 μM) callus turned dark in color and slow growing. Embryogenic cultures (76 %) responded with a mean number of 43 globular and 18 heart stage embryos. Somatic embryo maturation and subsequent conversion into plantlets took place on MS lacking growth regulators. Maximum number of somatic embryos developed on MS medium was 128.3 (per flask) and a plantlet conversion of 82 % was observed. Calcium alginate beads were produced by encapsulating somatic embryos. Highest percent germination (83 %) was observed on 0.8 % agar solidified MS medium with the plantlets acquiring an average length of 2.1 cm. Encapsulated somatic embryos could be stored at 4 °C up to 60 days with a conversion frequency of 49.3 %. Highest protein and proline content has been observed in embryogenic callus with small globular embryos. During morphological differentiation of the somatic embryos, changes in the antioxidant enzymatic system were observed. Superoxide dismutase (SOD) activity increased during initial stages and decreased catalase (CAT), peroxidase (POD), and ascorbate peroxidase (APX) activities were detected.

  16. New 'monolithic' templates and improved protocols for soft lithography and microchip fabrication

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pallandre, Antoine; Pal, Debjani; de Lambert, Bertrand; Viovy, Jean-Louis; Fütterer, Claus

    2006-05-01

    We report a new method for fast prototyping and fabrication of polydimethylsiloxane (PDMS) and plastic microfluidic chips. These methods share in common the preparation of monolithic masters which includes the fabrication of the planar support, the 'negative pattern' of the microchannels and the fluidic connectors. The monolithic templates are extremely robust compared to conventional ones made of silicon and SU-8, and easier to produce and cheaper than all-silicon or electroplated templates. In contrast to the above-mentioned methods, our process allows one to cast both micrometre- (e.g. the microchannel) and millimetre-sized structures (e.g. the fluidic connection to the outer world) in a single fabrication step. The 'monolithic template' strategy can be used to fabricate both elastomeric (e.g. poly(dimethyl siloxane (PDMS)) polyester thermoset masters and glassy polymeric (e.g. cyclic olefin copolymer (COC)) devices. In this study we also report on one step fabrication of elastomer chips and on surface modifications of the above mentioned monolithically fabricated masters in order to improve separation of the chip from the template.

  17. MHealth to Improve Measles Immunization in Guinea-Bissau: Study Protocol for a Randomized Controlled Trial

    PubMed Central

    Ravn, Henrik; Batista, Celso Soares Pereira; Rodrigues, Amabelia

    2016-01-01

    Background Recent studies have revealed a low measles vaccination (MV) rate in the Republic of Guinea-Bissau (West Africa) that has not increased in accordance with the increasing coverage of other vaccinations. Measles is the deadliest of all childhood rash/fever illnesses and spreads easily, implying that if the vaccination coverage is declining there is a significant risk of new measles outbreaks [27]. Meanwhile, mobile health (mHealth; the use of mobile phones for health interventions) has generated much enthusiasm, and shown potential in improving health service delivery in other contexts. Objective The aim of this study is to evaluate the efficiency of mHealth as a tool for improving MV coverage while contributing to the mHealth evidence base. Methods This study will take place at three health centers in different regions of Guinea-Bissau. Participants, defined as mothers of the children receiving the MV, will be enrolled when they arrive with their children at the health center to receive the Bacillus Calmette-Guérin vaccination, usually within one month of the child’s birth. Enrolment will continue until a study population of 990 children has been reached. The participants will be randomly assigned to a control arm or one of two intervention arms. Each of the three groups will have 330 participants, distributed equally between health centers. Participants in the first intervention arm will receive a scheduled short message service (SMS) text message reminding them of the MV. Participants in the second intervention arm will receive a voice call in addition to the SMS message, while the control arm will receive no interventions. The MV is scheduled to be administered at 9 months of age. Although the vaccine would still be effective after 12 months, local policy in Guinea-Bissau prevents children aged >12 months from receiving the vaccination, and thus the study will follow-up with participants after the children reach 12 months of age. Children who have

  18. Efficacy of interventions to improve physical activity levels in individuals with stroke: a systematic review protocol

    PubMed Central

    Aguiar, Larissa Tavares; Martins, Júlia Caetano; Nadeau, Sylvie; Britto, Raquel Rodrigues; Teixeira-Salmela, Luci F; Faria, Christina D C M

    2017-01-01

    Introduction Stroke is a leading health problem worldwide and an important cause of disability. Stroke survivors show low levels of physical activity, and increases in physical activity levels may improve function and health status. Therefore, the aims are to identify which interventions that have been employed to increase physical activity levels with stroke survivors, to verify their efficacy and to identify the gaps in the literature. Methods and analysis A systematic review of randomised controlled trials that investigated the efficacy of interventions aiming at increasing physical activity levels of stroke survivors will be conducted. Electronic searches will be performed in the MEDLINE, Physiotherapy Evidence Database (PEDro), Excerpta Medica (EMBASE), Literatura Latino-Americana e do Caribe em Ciências da Saúde (LILACS) and Scientific Electronic Library Online (SCIELO) databases. Hand searches of the reference lists of the included studies or relevant reviews will also be employed. Two independent reviewers will screen all the retrieved titles, abstracts and full texts. A third reviewer will be referred to solve any disagreements. The quality of the included studies will be assessed by the PEDro Rating Scale. This systematic review will also include a qualitative synthesis. Meta-analyses will be performed, if the studies are sufficiently homogeneous. This review will follow the Preferred Reporting Items for Systematic Review and Meta-Analysis (PRISMA) statement. The quality of the evidence regarding physical activity will be assessed, according to the Grading of Recommendations Assessment, Development and Evaluation (GRADE). Discussion This systematic review will provide information on which interventions are effective for increasing physical activity levels of stroke survivors. This evidence may be important for clinical decision-making and will allow the identification of gaps in the literature that may be useful for the definition of future research

  19. Characterization of Human Monocyte-derived Dendritic Cells by Imaging Flow Cytometry: A Comparison between Two Monocyte Isolation Protocols.

    PubMed

    Figueroa, Gloria; Parira, Tiyash; Laverde, Alejandra; Casteleiro, Gianna; El-Mabhouh, Amal; Nair, Madhavan; Agudelo, Marisela

    2016-10-18

    Dendritic cells (DCs) are antigen presenting cells of the immune system that play a crucial role in lymphocyte responses, host defense mechanisms, and pathogenesis of inflammation. Isolation and study of DCs have been important in biological research because of their distinctive features. Although they are essential key mediators of the immune system, DCs are very rare in blood, accounting for approximately 0.1 - 1% of total blood mononuclear cells. Therefore, alternatives for isolation methods rely on the differentiation of DCs from monocytes isolated from peripheral blood mononuclear cells (PBMCs). The utilization of proper isolation techniques that combine simplicity, affordability, high purity, and high yield of cells is imperative to consider. In the current study, two distinct methods for the generation of DCs will be compared. Monocytes were selected by adherence or negatively enriched using magnetic separation procedure followed by differentiation into DCs with IL-4 and GM-CSF. Monocyte and MDDC viability, proliferation, and phenotype were assessed using viability dyes, MTT assay, and CD11c/ CD14 surface marker analysis by imaging flow cytometry. Although the magnetic separation method yielded a significant higher percentage of monocytes with higher proliferative capacity when compared to the adhesion method, the findings have demonstrated the ability of both techniques to simultaneously generate monocytes that are capable of proliferating and differentiating into viable CD11c+ MDDCs after seven days in culture. Both methods yielded > 70% CD11c+ MDDCs. Therefore, our results provide insights that contribute to the development of reliable methods for isolation and characterization of human DCs.

  20. Telerehabilitation to improve outcomes for people with stroke: study protocol for a randomised controlled trial

    PubMed Central

    2012-01-01

    contribute to a functional decline following discharge from formal rehabilitation. Best practice guidelines recommend a prolonged period of rehabilitation, however this is expensive and therefore not undertaken in most publicly funded centres. An effective, cost-effective, and preference-sensitive therapy using basic technology to assist programme delivery may improve patient autonomy as they leave formal rehabilitation and return home. Trial registration ACTRN12612000464864 PMID:23216861

  1. Efficiency of four secondary enrichment protocols in differentiation and isolation of Listeria spp. and Listeria monocytogenes from smoked fish processing chains.

    PubMed

    Duarte, G; Vaz-Velho, M; Capell, C; Gibbs, P

    1999-11-15

    Four secondary enrichment protocols (conventional methods: UVM II, Fraser 24 h and Fraser 48 h: Impedimetric method: Listeria electrical detection medium) were studied for their ability to isolate Listeria spp. and Listeria monocytogenes from fish and environmental samples collected along the processing chain of cold-smoked fish. From all methods, Listeria spp. and L. monocytogenes were respectively present in 56 and 34 of 315 samples analysed. Fraser broth incubated for 48 h gave the fewest false negative Listeria spp. results [4/56; (7.1%)], but concurrently only 15/34 (44.1%) samples were correctly identified as containing L. monocytogenes, Listeria electrical detection (LED) medium detected only 36/56 (64.3%) Listeria spp. positive samples. Despite this lower isolation rate, LED identified 20/34 (58.8%) L. monocytogenes positive samples correctly and gave fewer false positive results. The overall conclusion was that more than one isolation method is needed to accurately estimate L. monocytogenes contamination rates.

  2. An Improved Culture Method for Selective Isolation of Campylobacter jejuni from Wastewater

    PubMed Central

    Kim, Jinyong; Oh, Euna; Banting, Graham S.; Braithwaite, Shannon; Chui, Linda; Ashbolt, Nicholas J.; Neumann, Norman F.; Jeon, Byeonghwa

    2016-01-01

    Campylobacter jejuni is one of the leading foodborne pathogens worldwide. C. jejuni is isolated from a wide range of foods, domestic animals, wildlife, and environmental sources. The currently available culture-based isolation methods are not highly effective for wastewater samples due to the low number of C. jejuni in the midst of competing bacteria. To detect and isolate C. jejuni from wastewater samples, in this study, we evaluated a few different enrichment conditions using five different antibiotics (i.e., cefoperazone, vancomycin, trimethoprim, polymyxin B, and rifampicin), to which C. jejuni is intrinsically resistant. The selectivity of each enrichment condition was measured with Ct value using quantitative real-time PCR, and multiplex PCR to determine Campylobacter species. In addition, the efficacy of Campylobacter isolation on different culture media after selective enrichment was examined by growing on Bolton and Preston agar plates. The addition of polymyxin B, rifampicin, or both to the Bolton selective supplements enhanced the selective isolation of C. jejuni. The results of 16S rDNA sequencing also revealed that Enterococcus spp. and Pseudomonas aeruginosa are major competing bacteria in the enrichment conditions. Although it is known to be difficult to isolate Campylobacter from samples with heavy contamination, this study well exhibited that the manipulation of antibiotic selective pressure improves the isolation efficiency of fastidious Campylobacter from wastewater. PMID:27617011

  3. Improvement of Longevity and Viability of Sperm Cells Isolated from Pollen of Zea mays L. 1

    PubMed Central

    Zhang, Guichang; Williams, Connie M.; Campenot, Mary K.; McGann, Locksley E.; Cass, David D.

    1992-01-01

    Our previous studies showed that the common maize (Zea mays L.) sperm isolation medium (Brewbaker and Kwack salts in 0.44 m sucrose without buffering) caused cell lysis in vitro. In an attempt to remedy this situation, 6 sugars, 10 buffers, 5 pH values, and 3 membrane protective agents were screened to improve longevity and viability of isolated Zea mays sperm cells as estimated by hemacytometry and flow cytometry. Use of 0.55 m galactose in the isolation solution increased sperm yield by 2.5-fold compared with sucrose, and suspension of isolated sperm cells in the galactose solution gave the best longevity among the six sugars. Buffering the galactose solution with 2 mm 2-(N-morpholino)ethanesulfonic acid significantly improved longevity, whereas other buffers had no effect or decreased the longevity and/or viability. Among the five pH values tested (5.0, 6.0, 6.7, 7.0, and 8.0), pH 6.7 appeared to be optimal for maintenance of both longevity and viability. Screening of membrane protectants showed that cysteine caused a rapid decrease in cell viability and increased lysis, whereas dithiothreitol increased the cell numbers but lowered their viability. Addition of 0.1% bovine serum albumin increased cell numbers and viability, and about 70% of the cells remained viable after 72 h of suspension. Cell longevity and viability were also improved in 0.44 m sucrose when the solution was conditioned with 2-(N-morpholino)ethanesulfonic acid and bovine serum albumin. Use of 2-(N-morpholino)ethanesulfonic acid and bovine serum albumin inthe isolation and suspension medium significantly improved the viability and longevity of sperm cells isolated from Zea mays pollen. PMID:16652985

  4. A Qualitative Study of the Treatment Improvement Protocols (TIPs): An Assessment of the Use of TIPs by Individuals Affiliated with the Addiction Technology Transfer Centers (ATTCs).

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Hayashi, Susan W.; Suzuki, Marcia; Hubbard, Susan M.; Huang, Judy Y.; Cobb, Anita M.

    2003-01-01

    Evaluated the Addiction Technology Transfer Centers (ATTCs) of the Center for Substance Abuse Treatment (CSAT) as a means of diffusion of innovations, focusing on use of the Treatment Improvement Protocols (TIPs). Qualitative studies at 6 ATTCs that included 57 interviews show that the CSAT is at the forefront of providing resources to the…

  5. Improvement in the quality of the cardiac vein images by optimizing the scan protocol of multidetector-row computed tomography.

    PubMed

    Hara, Tetsuya; Yamashiro, Kohei; Okajima, Katsunori; Hayashi, Takatoshi; Kajiya, Teishi

    2009-11-01

    The present study aimed at optimizing the scan protocol for multidetector-row computed tomography (MDCT) to adequately visualize coronary veins. Circulation time (Cir.T) was defined as the time period from the injection of contrast media into the coronary artery to the pervasion of the contrast media into the coronary sinus as observed by coronary angiography. We investigated the relation between the Cir.T and echocardiographic parameters in 64 patients. The left ventricular end-diastolic diameter (LVDd) and left ventricular end-systolic diameter (LVDs) were correlated with the Cir.T (r = 0.58, P < 0.0001, and r = 0.60, P < 0.0001 respectively). In addition, the left ventricular ejection fraction (LVEF) was negatively correlated with the Cir.T (r = 0.48, P < 0.0001). The average Cir. T was longer in patients with LVEF < 35% (8.0 s vs 6.7 s; P < 0.05) or LVDd > 55 mm (7.9 s vs 6.2 s; P < 0.05) than in the other patients. The quality of the MDCT images of the coronary veins obtained at different scan timings (coronary artery phase and 10 s or 15 s after the coronary artery phase) were graded and classified into four categories (0 = worst, 3 = best) in 25 patients with LVEF < 35%. The delays of 10 and 15 s after the coronary artery phase significantly improved the mean image quality (P < 0.05). The Cir.T was prolonged in patients with low LVEF and LV dilation. An appropriate delay improved the quality of the MDCT images of the coronary veins in patients with LV dysfunction.

  6. Rational approaches to improving the isolation of endophytic actinobacteria from Australian native trees.

    PubMed

    Kaewkla, Onuma; Franco, Christopher M M

    2013-02-01

    In recent years, new actinobacterial species have been isolated as endophytes of plants and shrubs and are sought after both for their role as potential producers of new drug candidates for the pharmaceutical industry and as biocontrol inoculants for sustainable agriculture. Molecular-based approaches to the study of microbial ecology generally reveal a broader microbial diversity than can be obtained by cultivation methods. This study aimed to improve the success of isolating individual members of the actinobacterial population as pure cultures as well as improving the ability to characterise the large numbers obtained in pure culture. To achieve this objective, our study successfully employed rational and holistic approaches including the use of isolation media with low concentrations of nutrients normally available to the microorganism in the plant, plating larger quantities of plant sample, incubating isolation plates for up to 16 weeks, excising colonies when they are visible and choosing Australian endemic trees as the source of the actinobacteria. A hierarchy of polyphasic methods based on culture morphology, amplified 16S rRNA gene restriction analysis and limited sequencing was used to classify all 576 actinobacterial isolates from leaf, stem and root samples of two eucalypts: a Grey Box and Red Gum, a native apricot tree and a native pine tree. The classification revealed that, in addition to 413 Streptomyces spp., isolates belonged to 16 other actinobacterial genera: Actinomadura (two strains), Actinomycetospora (six), Actinopolymorpha (two), Amycolatopsis (six), Gordonia (one), Kribbella (25), Micromonospora (six), Nocardia (ten), Nocardioides (11), Nocardiopsis (one), Nonomuraea (one), Polymorphospora (two), Promicromonospora (51), Pseudonocardia (36), Williamsia (two) and a novel genus Flindersiella (one). In order to prove novelty, 12 strains were characterised fully to the species level based on polyphasic taxonomy. One strain represented a novel

  7. A filtration-based protocol to isolate human plasma membrane-derived vesicles and exosomes from blood plasma.

    PubMed

    Grant, Ryan; Ansa-Addo, Ephraim; Stratton, Dan; Antwi-Baffour, Samuel; Jorfi, Samireh; Kholia, Sharad; Krige, Lizelle; Lange, Sigrun; Inal, Jameel

    2011-08-31

    The methods of Plasma Membrane-derived Vesicle (PMV) isolation and quantification vary considerably in the literature and a new standard needs to be defined. This study describes a novel filtration method to isolate PMVs in plasma, which avoids high speed centrifugation, and to quantify them using a Becton Dickinson (BD) FACS Calibur™ flow cytometer, as annexin V-positive vesicles, larger than 0.2 μm in diameter. Essentially microvesicles (which comprise a mixture of PMVs and exosomes) from citrate plasma were sonicated to break up clumped exosomes, and filtered using Millipore 0.1 μm pore size Hydrophilic Durapore membranes in Swinnex 13 mm filter holders. Phosphatidylserine-positive PMVs detected with annexin V-PE were quantified using combined labelling and gating strategies in conjunction with Polysciences Polybead Microspheres (0.2 μm) and BDTrucount tubes. The PMV absolute count was calculated on the analysis template using the Trucount tube lot number information and expressed in PMV count/ml. Having estimated a normal reference range (0.51×10(5)-2.82×10(5) PMVs/ml) from a small sample of human donors, using the developed method, the effect of certain variables was investigated. Variations such as freezing of samples and gender status did not significantly alter the PMV absolute count, and with age plasma PMV levels were only marginally reduced. Smokers appeared to have reduced PMV levels. Nicotine, as for calpeptin was shown to dose-dependently (from 10 up to 50 μM) reduce levels of early apoptosis in THP-1 monocytes and to decrease the level of PMV release. Fasting individuals had 2-3 fold higher PMV absolute counts compared to non-fasting subjects.

  8. The Microgravity Isolation Mount (MGIM): A Columbus facility for improving the microgravity quality of payloads

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Owen, R. G.; Jones, D. I.; Owens, A. R.; Roberts, G.; Hadfield, P.

    1992-01-01

    The Microgravity Isolation Mount (MGIM) is a facility for providing active vibration isolation for sensitive experiments on the Columbus Attached Laboratory and the Columbus Free-Flying Laboratory. The facility is designed to be accommodated in a standard Columbus rack, and it iterfaces with existing rack utility services. The design is based on a non-contact strategy, whereby the payload 'floats' inside the rack, and its position is controlled by a number of magnetic actuators. The main advantage of using this non-contact strategy is the improved microgravity quality available. The overall design of the facility and a description of its elements are given.

  9. Optimizing isolation protocol of organic carbon and elemental carbon for 14C analysis using fine particulate samples

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Liu, Junwen; Li, Jun; Ding, Ping; Zhang, Yanlin; Liu, Di; Shen, Chengde; Zhang, Gan

    2017-04-01

    Radiocarbon (14C) analysis is a unique tool that can be used to directly apportion organic carbon (OC) and elemental carbon (EC) into fossil and non-fossil fractions. In this study, a coupled carbon analyzer and high-vacuum setup was established to collect atmospheric OC and EC. We thoroughly investigated the correlations between 14C levels and mass recoveries of OC and EC using urban PM2.5 samples collected from a city in central China and found that: (1) the 14C signal of the OC fraction collected in the helium phase of the EUSSAR_2 protocol (200 °C for 120 s, 300 °C for 150 s, 450 °C for 180 s, and 650 °C for 180 s) was representative of the entire OC fraction, with a relative error of approximately 6%, and (2) after thermal treatments of 120 s at 200 °C, 150 s at 300 °C, and 180 s at 475 °C in an oxidative atmosphere (10% oxygen, 90% helium) and 180 s at 650 °C in helium, the remaining EC fraction sufficiently represented the 14C level of the entire EC, with a relative error of <10%. The average recovery of the OC and EC fractions for 14C analysis was 64± 7% (n = 5) and 87 ± 5% (n = 5), respectively. The fraction of modern carbon in the OC and EC of reference material (RM) 8785 was 0.564 ± 0.013 and 0.238 ± 0.006, respectively. Analysis of 14C levels in four selected PM2.5 samples in Xinxiang, China revealed that the relative contribution of fossil sources in OC and EC in the PM2.5 samples were 50.5± 5.8% and 81.4± 2.6%, respectively, which are comparable to findings in previous studies conducted in other Chinese cities. We confirmed that most urban EC derives from fossil fuel combustion processes, whereas both fossil and non-fossil sources have comparable and important impacts on OC. Our results suggested that water-soluble organic carbon (WSOC) and its pyrolytic carbon can be completely removed before EC collection via the method employed in this study.

  10. Roles of Smartphone App Use in Improving Social Capital and Reducing Social Isolation.

    PubMed

    Cho, Jaehee

    2015-06-01

    This study investigated the relationships among smartphone app use, social capital, and social isolation. It focused on two different smartphone apps--communication and social networking site (SNS) apps--and their effects on bonding and bridging social capital. Generational differences in smartphone use were also considered. Results from hierarchical regression analyses indicated that individuals' use of communication apps was helpful for increasing social capital and that this effect of using communication apps was stronger among those of the millennial generation than among older users. Moreover, bonding and bridging social capital was found to reduce individuals' social isolation significantly. These results imply the notable role of smartphone apps in reducing social isolation and improving the personal lives of individuals.

  11. Facile mechanical shaking method is an improved isolation approach for islet preparation and transplantation

    PubMed Central

    Yin, Nina; Chen, Tao; Yu, Yuling; Han, Yongming; Yan, Fei; Zheng, Zhou; Chen, Zebin

    2016-01-01

    Successful islet isolation is crucial for islet transplantation and cell treatment for type 1 diabetes. Current isolation methods are able to obtain 500–1,000 islets per rat, which results in a waste of ≥50% of total islets. In the present study, a facile mechanical shaking method for improving islet yield (up to 1,500 per rat) was developed and summarized, which was demonstrated to be more effective than the existing well-established stationary method. The present results showed that isolated islets have a maximum yield of 1,326±152 when shaking for 15 min for the fully-cannulated pancreas. For both fully-cannulated and half-cannulated pancreas in the presence of rat DNAse inhibitor, the optimal shaking time was amended to 20 min with a further increased yield of 1,344±134 and 1,286±124 islets, respectively. Furthermore, the majority of the isolated islets were morphologically intact with a well-defined surface and almost no central necrotic zone, which suggested that the condition of islets obtained via the mechanical shaking method was consistent with the stationary method. Islet size distribution was also calculated and it was demonstrated that islets from the stationary method exhibited the same size distribution as the non-cannulated group, which had more larger islets than the fully-cannulated and half-cannulated groups isolated via the shaking method. In addition, the results of glucose challenge showed that the refraction index of each group was >2.5, which indicated the well-preserved function of isolated islets. Furthermore, the transplanted islets exhibited a therapeutic effect after 1 day of transplantation; however, they failed to control blood glucose levels after ~7 days of transplantation. In conclusion, these results demonstrated that the facile mechanical shaking method may markedly improve the yield of rat islet isolation, and in vitro and in vivo investigation demonstrated the well-preserved function of isolated islets in the control of

  12. Downhill Running-Based Overtraining Protocol Improves Hepatic Insulin Signaling Pathway without Concomitant Decrease of Inflammatory Proteins.

    PubMed

    da Rocha, Alisson L; Pereira, Bruno C; Pauli, José R; Cintra, Dennys E; de Souza, Claudio T; Ropelle, Eduardo R; da Silva, Adelino S R

    2015-01-01

    The purpose of this study was to verify the effects of overtraining (OT) on insulin, inflammatory and gluconeogenesis signaling pathways in the livers of mice. Rodents were divided into control (CT), overtrained by downhill running (OTR/down), overtrained by uphill running (OTR/up) and overtrained by running without inclination (OTR). Rotarod, incremental load, exhaustive and grip force tests were used to evaluate performance. Thirty-six hours after a grip force test, the livers were extracted for subsequent protein analyses. The phosphorylation of insulin receptor beta (pIRbeta), glycogen synthase kinase 3 beta (pGSK3beta) and forkhead box O1 (pFoxo1) increased in OTR/down versus CT. pGSK3beta was higher in OTR/up versus CT, and pFoxo1 was higher in OTR/up and OTR versus CT. Phosphorylation of protein kinase B (pAkt) and insulin receptor substrate 1 (pIRS-1) were higher in OTR/up versus CT and OTR/down. The phosphorylation of IκB kinase alpha and beta (pIKKalpha/beta) was higher in all OT protocols versus CT, and the phosphorylation of stress-activated protein kinases/Jun amino-terminal kinases (pSAPK-JNK) was higher in OTR/down versus CT. Protein levels of peroxisome proliferator-activated receptor-gamma coactivator 1alpha (PGC-1alpha) and hepatocyte nuclear factor 4alpha (HNF-4alpha) were higher in OTR versus CT. In summary, OTR/down improved the major proteins of insulin signaling pathway but up-regulated TRB3, an Akt inhibitor, and its association with Akt.

  13. Improved Detection by Next-Generation Sequencing of Pyrazinamide Resistance in Mycobacterium tuberculosis Isolates.

    PubMed

    Maningi, Nontuthuko E; Daum, Luke T; Rodriguez, John D; Mphahlele, Matsie; Peters, Remco P H; Fischer, Gerald W; Chambers, James P; Fourie, P Bernard

    2015-12-01

    The technical limitations of common tests used for detecting pyrazinamide (PZA) resistance in Mycobacterium tuberculosis isolates pose challenges for comprehensive and accurate descriptions of drug resistance in patients with multidrug-resistant tuberculosis (MDR-TB). In this study, a 606-bp fragment (comprising the pncA coding region plus the promoter) was sequenced using Ion Torrent next-generation sequencing (NGS) to detect associated PZA resistance mutations in 88 recultured MDR-TB isolates from an archived series collected in 2001. These 88 isolates were previously Sanger sequenced, with 55 (61%) designated as carrying the wild-type pncA gene and 33 (37%) showing mutations. PZA susceptibility of the isolates was also determined using the Bactec 460 TB system and the Wayne test. In this study, isolates were recultured and susceptibility testing was performed in Bactec 960 MGIT. Concordance between NGS and MGIT results was 93% (n = 88), and concordance values between the Bactec 460, the Wayne test, or pncA gene Sanger sequencing and NGS results were 82% (n = 88), 83% (n = 88), and 89% (n = 88), respectively. NGS confirmed the majority of pncA mutations detected by Sanger sequencing but revealed several new and mixed-strain mutations that resolved discordancy in other phenotypic results. Importantly, in 53% (18/34) of these isolates, pncA mutations were located in the 151 to 360 region and warrant further exploration. In these isolates, with their known resistance to rifampin, NGS of pncA improved PZA resistance detection sensitivity to 97% and specificity to 94% using NGS as the gold standard and helped to resolve discordant results from conventional methodologies.

  14. Using Green Star Metrics to Optimize the Greenness of Literature Protocols for Syntheses

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Duarte, Rita C. C.; Ribeiro, M. Gabriela T. C.; Machado, Adélio A. S. C.

    2015-01-01

    A procedure to improve the greenness of a synthesis, without performing laboratory work, using alternative protocols available in the literature is presented. The greenness evaluation involves the separate assessment of the different steps described in the available protocols--reaction, isolation, and purification--as well as the global process,…

  15. The Ontological Perspectives of the Semantic Web and the Metadata Harvesting Protocol: Applications of Metadata for Improving Web Search.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Fast, Karl V.; Campbell, D. Grant

    2001-01-01

    Compares the implied ontological frameworks of the Open Archives Initiative Protocol for Metadata Harvesting and the World Wide Web Consortium's Semantic Web. Discusses current search engine technology, semantic markup, indexing principles of special libraries and online databases, and componentization and the distinction between data and…

  16. Improved methods in Agrobacterium-mediated transformation of almond using positive (mannose/pmi) or negative (kanamycin resistance) selection-based protocols.

    PubMed

    Ramesh, Sunita A; Kaiser, Brent N; Franks, Tricia; Collins, Graham; Sedgley, Margaret

    2006-08-01

    A protocol for Agrobacterium-mediated transformation with either kanamycin or mannose selection was developed for leaf explants of the cultivar Prunus dulcis cv. Ne Plus Ultra. Regenerating shoots were selected on medium containing 15 muM kanamycin (negative selection), while in the positive selection strategy, shoots were selected on 2.5 g/l mannose supplemented with 15 g/l sucrose. Transformation efficiencies based on PCR analysis of individual putative transformed shoots from independent lines relative to the initial numbers of leaf explants tested were 5.6% for kanamycin/nptII and 6.8% for mannose/pmi selection, respectively. Southern blot analysis on six randomly chosen PCR-positive shoots confirmed the presence of the nptII transgene in each, and five randomly chosen lines identified to contain the pmi transgene by PCR showed positive hybridisation to a pmi DNA probe. The positive (mannose/pmi) and the negative (kanamycin) selection protocols used in this study have greatly improved transformation efficiency in almond, which were confirmed with PCR and Southern blot. This study also demonstrates that in almond the mannose/pmi selection protocol is appropriate and can result in higher transformation efficiencies over that of kanamycin/nptII selection protocols.

  17. Improved isolation of Chlamydia trachomatis from a low-prevalence population by using polyethylene glycol.

    PubMed

    Gibson, J P; Egerer, R M; Wiedbrauk, D L

    1993-02-01

    The effect of polyethylene glycol (PEG) on the isolation of Chlamydia trachomatis was evaluated in our laboratory. Initial range-finding experiments demonstrated that the number of chlamydial inclusion bodies increased with increasing PEG concentrations. However, PEG concentrations above 10.5% became progressively more toxic to the McCoy cell monolayers. When 50 frozen clinical Chlamydia isolates were inoculated onto McCoy cell cultures with and without 7% PEG, the PEG-treated cultures produced three- to fivefold more chlamydial inclusions than cultures without PEG. This enhancement was also observed when 1,144 fresh clinical specimens from a low-prevalence population were tested. With fresh clinical specimens, PEG-treated cultures produced two- to sixfold more inclusions than standard cultures. The addition of 7% PEG to the chlamydial overlay medium significantly increased the number of inclusions in each culture, improved the sensitivity of the culture, and decreased the probability of missing a weakly positive specimen.

  18. Improving safety of salami by application of bacteriocins produced by an autochthonous Lactobacillus curvatus isolate.

    PubMed

    de Souza Barbosa, Matheus; Todorov, Svetoslav Dimitrov; Ivanova, Iskra; Chobert, Jean-Marc; Haertlé, Thomas; de Melo Franco, Bernadette Dora Gombossy

    2015-04-01

    The aims of this study were to isolate LAB with anti-Listeria activity from salami samples, characterize the bacteriocin/s produced by selected isolates, semi-purify them and evaluate their effectiveness for the control of Listeria monocytogenes during manufacturing of salami in a pilot scale. Two isolates (differentiated by RAPD-PCR) presented activity against 22 out of 23 L. monocytogenes strains for bacteriocin MBSa2, while the bacteriocin MBSa3 inhibited all 23 strains in addition to several other Gram-positive bacteria for both antimicrobials and were identified as Lactobacillus curvatus based on 16S rRNA sequencing. A three-step purification procedure indicated that both strains produced the same two active peptides (4457.9 Da and 4360.1 Da), homlogous to sakacins P and X, respectively. Addition of the semi-purified bacteriocins produced by Lb. curvatus MBSa2 to the batter for production of salami, experimentally contaminated with L. monocytogenes (10(4)-10(5) CFU/g), caused 2 log and 1.5 log reductions in the counts of the pathogen in the product after 10 and 20 days respectively, highlighting the interest for application of these bacteriocins to improve safety of salami during its manufacture.

  19. Improved isolation of archeomagnetic signals by combined low temperature and alternating field demagnetization

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Borradaile, Graham J.; Lagroix, France; Trimble, Dale

    2001-09-01

    Conventional alternating field (AF) demagnetization of the magnetite-bearing claystone foundations of a Saxon or late medieval lime kiln in Lincolnshire, England fail to isolate stable characteristic remanences, or remanences compatible with possible contemporary geomagnetic field orientations. Consolidation of the material prevented thermal demagnetization. When low temperature demagnetization (LTD) precedes AF demagnetization, however, the vector plots show a stable characteristic (primary) component. Magnetic anisotropy measurements show that the LTD did not significantly disturb the mineral fabric of the claystone, that the mineral fabric did not deflect the palaeofield, and that AF demagnetization did not induce a field-impressed anisotropy during the experiments. Anisotropy of low-field magnetic susceptibility (AMS) is affected by all minerals, and therefore the anisotropy of the magnetite was isolated by measuring anisotropy of anhysteretic remanence (AARM); this is of more relevance in evaluating the potential for palaeofield deflection. Thus, we conclude that LTD preceding AF demagnetization is responsible for improving the isolation of a characteristic remanence, which then favours a late medieval age for the kiln foundation.

  20. Association between Pseudonocardia symbionts and Atta leaf-cutting ants suggested by improved isolation methods.

    PubMed

    Marsh, Sarah E; Poulsen, Michael; Gorosito, Norma B; Pinto-Tomás, Adrián; Masiulionis, Virginia E; Currie, Cameron R

    2013-03-01

    Fungus-growing ants associate with multiple symbiotic microbes, including Actinobacteria for production of antibiotics. The best studied of these bacteria are within the genus Pseudonocardia, which in most fungus-growing ants are conspicuously visible on the external cuticle of workers. However, given that fungus-growing ants in the genus Atta do not carry visible Actinobacteria on their cuticle, it is unclear if this genus engages in the symbiosis with Pseudonocardia. Here we explore whether improving culturing techniques can allow for successful isolation of Pseudonocardia from Atta cephalotes leaf-cutting ants. We obtained Pseudonocardia from 9 of 11 isolation method/colony component combinations from all 5 colonies intensively sampled. The most efficient technique was bead-beating workers in phosphate buffer solution, then plating the suspension on carboxymethylcellulose medium. Placing these strains in a fungus-growing ant-associated Pseudonocardia phylogeny revealed that while some strains grouped with clades of Pseudonocardia associated with other genera of fungus-growing ants, a large portion of the isolates fell into two novel phylogenetic clades previously not identified from this ant-microbe symbiosis. Our findings suggest that Pseudonocardia may be associated with Atta fungus-growing ants, potentially internalized, and that localizing the symbiont and exploring its role is necessary to shed further light on the association.

  1. Salvinorins D-F, new neoclerodane diterpenoids from Salvia divinorum, and an improved method for the isolation of salvinorin A.

    PubMed

    Munro, Thomas A; Rizzacasa, Mark A

    2003-05-01

    Three new neoclerodane diterpenoids, salvinorins D-F (4-6), have been isolated from the leaves of Salvia divinorum. The structures were elucidated by chemical and spectroscopic methods, particularly 1D and 2D NMR. A simplified isolation method using chromatography on activated carbon also gave improved yields of the controlled substance salvinorin A (1) and of salvinorin C (3).

  2. Improved hypothermic short-term storage of isolated mouse islets by adding serum to preservation solutions.

    PubMed

    Kimura, Yasuko; Okitsu, Teru; Xibao, Liu; Teramae, Hiroki; Okonogi, Atsuhito; Toyoda, Kentaro; Uemoto, Shinji; Fukushima, Masanori

    2013-01-01

    Preserving isolated islets at low temperature appears attractive because it can keep islet quantity comparable to freshly isolated islets. In this study, we evaluated the effect of serum as an additive to preservation solutions on islet quality after short-term hypothermic storage. Isolated mouse islets were preserved at 4°C in University of Wisconsin solution (UW) alone, UW with serum, M-Kyoto solution (MK) alone or MK with serum. We then assessed islet quantity, morphology, viability and function in vitro as well as in vivo. Islet quantity after storage in all four solutions was well maintained for up to 120 h. However, islets functioned for different duration; glucose-stimulated insulin release assay revealed that the duration was 72 h when islets were stored in UW with serum and MK with serum, but only 24 h in UW alone, and the islet function disappeared immediately in MK alone. Viability assay confirmed that more than 70% islet cells survived for up to 48 h when islets are preserved in UW with serum and MK with serum, but the viability decreased rapidly in UW alone and MK alone. In in vivo bioassays using 48-h preserved isogeneic islets, all recipient mice restored normal blood glucose concentrations by transplants preserved in UW with serum or MK with serum, whereas 33.3% recipients and no recipient restored diabetes by transplants preserved in UW alone and in MK alone respectively. Adding serum to both UW and MK improves their capability to store isolated islets by maintaining islet functional viability.

  3. Improved oil recovery using bacteria isolated from North Sea petroleum reservoirs

    SciTech Connect

    Davey, R.A.; Lappin-Scott, H.

    1995-12-31

    During secondary oil recovery, water is injected into the formation to sweep out the residual oil. The injected water, however, follows the path of least resistance through the high-permeability zones, leaving oil in the low-permeability zones. Selective plugging of these their zones would divert the waterflood to the residual oil and thus increase the life of the well. Bacteria have been suggested as an alternative plugging agent to the current method of polymer injection. Starved bacteria can penetrate deeply into rock formations where they attach to the rock surfaces, and given the right nutrients can grow and produce exo-polymer, reducing the permeability of these zones. The application of microbial enhanced oil recovery has only been applied to shallow, cool, onshore fields to date. This study has focused on the ability of bacteria to enhance oil recovery offshore in the North Sea, where the environment can be considered extreme. A screen of produced water from oil reservoirs (and other extreme subterranean environments) was undertaken, and two bacteria were chosen for further work. These two isolates were able to grow and survive in the presence of saline formation waters at a range of temperatures above 50{degrees}C as facultative anaerobes. When a solution of isolates was passed through sandpacks and nutrients were added, significant reductions in permeabilities were achieved. This was confirmed in Clashach sandstone at 255 bar, when a reduction of 88% in permeability was obtained. Both isolates can survive nutrient starvation, which may improve penetration through the reservoir. Thus, the isolates show potential for field trials in the North Sea as plugging agents.

  4. Optimized Protocols for In Vitro Maturation of Rat Oocytes Dramatically Improve Their Developmental Competence to a Level Similar to That of Ovulated Oocytes.

    PubMed

    Jiao, Guang-Zhong; Cui, Wei; Yang, Rui; Lin, Juan; Gong, Shuai; Lian, Hua-Yu; Sun, Ming-Ju; Tan, Jing-He

    2016-02-01

    The developmental capacity of in vitro-matured (IVM) oocytes is markedly lower than that of their in vivo-matured (IVO) counterparts, suggesting the need for optimization of IVM protocols in different species. There are few studies on IVM of rat oocytes, and there are even fewer attempts to improve ooplasmic maturation compared to those reported in other species. Furthermore, rat oocytes are well known to undergo spontaneous activation (SA) after leaving the oviduct; however, whether IVM rat oocytes have lower SA rates than IVO oocytes and can potentially be used for nuclear transfer is unknown. In this study, we investigated the effects of maturation protocols on cytoplasmic maturation of IVM rat oocytes and observed the possibility to reduce SA by using IVM rat oocytes. Ooplasmic maturation was assessed using multiple markers, including pre- and postimplantation development, meiotic progression, CG redistribution, redox state, and the expression of developmental potential- and apoptosis-related genes. The results showed that the best protocol consisting of modified Tissue Culture Medium-199 (TCM-199) supplemented with cysteamine/cystine and the cumulus cell monolayer dramatically improved the developmental competence of rat oocytes and supported both pre- and postimplantation development and other ooplasmic maturation makers to levels similar to that observed in ovulated oocytes. Rates of SA were significantly lower in IVM oocytes than in IVO oocytes when observed at the same intervals after nuclear maturation. In conclusion, we have optimized protocols for IVM of rat oocytes that sustain ooplasmic maturation to a level similar to ovulated oocytes. The results suggest that IVM rat oocytes might be used to reduce SA for rat cloning.

  5. Effectiveness of a Vestibular Rehabilitation Protocol to Improve the Health-Related Quality of Life and Postural Balance in Patients with Vertigo.

    PubMed

    Tsukamoto, Heloísa Freiria; Costa, Viviane de Souza Pinho; Silva, Rubens Alexandre da; Pelosi, Gislaine Garcia; Marchiori, Luciana Lozza de Moraes; Vaz, Cláudia Regina Sanches; Fernandes, Karen Barros Parron

    2015-07-01

    Introduction Dizziness can be characterized as a balance disorder that causes discomfort, leading to several functional limitations. Currently, vestibular rehabilitation has been highlighted as a possible treatment. Objective Analyze the effects of completing a vestibular rehabilitation treatment protocol on quality of life and postural balance in patients with vestibular complaints, as well as to compare these effects between the patients taking or not taking antivertigo drugs. Methods A nonrandomized controlled trial was performed with 20 patients previously diagnosed with vestibular diseases. Information regarding vertigo symptoms, quality of life as assessed through the Dizziness Handicap Inventory, visual analog scale of dizziness, and stabilometry using force platform was collected. Patients were treated for 12 weeks by a custom protocol. The sample was divided into two groups according to the use (medicated group, n = 9) or not (control group, n = 11) of antivertigo drugs. Results There was improvement in quality of life (p < 0.001) and intensity of dizziness (p = 0.003) with the intervention. An improvement of postural balance was observed through functional tests. However, no statistically significant difference was noted in stabilometry. When both groups were compared, no statistically significant differences between the variations of the variables analyzed were found in the re-evaluation session. Conclusion Quality of life and postural balance are improved with intervention. However, this improvement is not associated with pharmacologic treatment.

  6. Effectiveness of a Vestibular Rehabilitation Protocol to Improve the Health-Related Quality of Life and Postural Balance in Patients with Vertigo

    PubMed Central

    Tsukamoto, Heloísa Freiria; Costa, Viviane de Souza Pinho; Silva, Rubens Alexandre da; Pelosi, Gislaine Garcia; Marchiori, Luciana Lozza de Moraes; Vaz, Cláudia Regina Sanches; Fernandes, Karen Barros Parron

    2015-01-01

    Introduction Dizziness can be characterized as a balance disorder that causes discomfort, leading to several functional limitations. Currently, vestibular rehabilitation has been highlighted as a possible treatment. Objective Analyze the effects of completing a vestibular rehabilitation treatment protocol on quality of life and postural balance in patients with vestibular complaints, as well as to compare these effects between the patients taking or not taking antivertigo drugs. Methods A nonrandomized controlled trial was performed with 20 patients previously diagnosed with vestibular diseases. Information regarding vertigo symptoms, quality of life as assessed through the Dizziness Handicap Inventory, visual analog scale of dizziness, and stabilometry using force platform was collected. Patients were treated for 12 weeks by a custom protocol. The sample was divided into two groups according to the use (medicated group, n = 9) or not (control group, n = 11) of antivertigo drugs. Results There was improvement in quality of life (p < 0.001) and intensity of dizziness (p = 0.003) with the intervention. An improvement of postural balance was observed through functional tests. However, no statistically significant difference was noted in stabilometry. When both groups were compared, no statistically significant differences between the variations of the variables analyzed were found in the re-evaluation session. Conclusion Quality of life and postural balance are improved with intervention. However, this improvement is not associated with pharmacologic treatment. PMID:26157499

  7. Improving care for victims: a study protocol of the evaluation of a centre for sexual and family violence

    PubMed Central

    Zijlstra, E; LoFoWong, S; Hutschemaekers, G; Lagro-Janssen, A

    2016-01-01

    Introduction Worldwide, sexual and family violence are highly prevalent problems. Victims of sexual and family violence often do not seek formal help in the acute phase. When they do seek help, they encounter a system of scattered care. For this reason, a centre for sexual and family violence was launched in Nijmegen, the Netherlands. The centre provides multidisciplinary care for victims of acute sexual and/or family violence. With the study described in this study protocol, we want to evaluate the implementation process and the reach of the Center for Sexual and Family Violence Nijmegen (CSFVN). Methods and analysis We will conduct a mixed-methods study including quantitative and qualitative methods of data collection and analysis. Data about the implementation process will be obtained via semistructured interviews and focus group discussions. Content analysis will be done in software program Atlas.ti. Analysis of file data will be undertaken to assess the reach of the CSFVN (patient characteristics and characteristics of the care they received). The data will be analysed in SPSS. Ethics and dissemination The Medical Ethics Committee of the Radboud University Nijmegen Medical Center approved the study protocol under file number 2012–1218. Dissemination will be done by submitting scientific articles to academic peer-reviewed journals. We will present the results at relevant international, national and local conferences and meetings. We will send press releases to relevant media. We will share the results with the network of assault centres in the Netherlands. PMID:27619828

  8. Shock wave therapy associated with eccentric strengthening versus isolated eccentric strengthening for Achilles insertional tendinopathy treatment: a double-blinded randomised clinical trial protocol

    PubMed Central

    Mansur, Nacime Salomão Barbachan; Faloppa, Flávio; Belloti, João Carlos; Ingham, Sheila J McNeill; Matsunaga, Fabio Teruo; dos Santos, Paulo Roberto Dias; dos Santos, Bruno Schiefer; Carrazzone, Oreste Lemos; Peixoto, Gabriel; Aoyama, Bruno Takeshi; Tamaoki, Marcel Jun Sugawara

    2017-01-01

    Background There is no consensus regarding the treatment of Achilles insertional tendinopathies. Eccentric training remains the main choice in the conservative treatment of this illness; however, the good results in the management of non-insertional Achilles tendinopathy were not replicated in the insertional condition. Low energy shock wave therapy has been described as an alternative to these patients, but has yet to be empirically tested. Hypothesis Shock wave therapy, adjunctive to the eccentric strengthening protocol, will improve measures of pain and function. Design Double blind, placebo-controlled, parallel groups, randomised clinical trial. Materials and methods 93 patients with a diagnosis of chronic insertional tendinopathy, referred from primary or secondary healthcare services, will be assessed and enrolled in this study. They will be divided into two groups (randomised by sequentially numbered identical envelopes, which will be administered serially to participants), one containing the combination of low energy shock wave and eccentric exercises, as treatment and the other comprehending the exercises and the placebo treatment (an apparatus placed in the therapeutic head). The assessments will occur in 2, 4, 6, 12 and 24 weeks. Patients will be evaluated primarily by the Victorian Institute of Sport Assessment-Achilles questionnaire and secondarily by the visual analogue scale, Algometry, the American Orthopedic Foot and Ankle Society scale, the Foot and Ankle Outcome Score and the 12-item Short Form Health Survey. We will use comparison of two proportions via relative frequency analysis, the Pearson Correlation the χ2 test and the analysis of variance for statistical analyses. Discussion This study intends to demonstrate if the association of the eccentric exercise programme with the shock wave therapy can produce good results regarding the treatment of the Achilles insertional tendinopathy. In an attempt to prevent the high costs and complications

  9. Patient education interventions to improve physical activity in patients with intermittent claudication: a protocol for a systematic mixed-studies review

    PubMed Central

    Abaraogu, Ukachukwu Okoroafor; Dall, Philippa Margaret; Seenan, Christopher Andrew

    2016-01-01

    Introduction Peripheral arterial disease (PAD) and intermittent claudication (IC) decrease an individual's capacity to engage in physical activity (PA) with potentially negative effects on PA behaviour. Strategies to improve PA among this population may provide a range of positive health benefits. We present a protocol to assess the components of patient education interventions that improve PA capacity and PA behaviour in patients with PAD and IC. Methods and analysis Published peer-reviewed studies will be searched in the following databases: CINAHL, the Cochrane Library, OVID, ProQuest, AMED, MEDLINE, PsycINFO, Web of Science Core Collection and PEDro, to identify literature investigating the effect of patient education on PA of patients with PAD and IC, or studies that investigated patients' perceptions or experience with these interventions. Two authors will independently perform screening for study eligibility, result synthesis and then appraise study quality. For interventions without follow-up, primary outcome measures will include change in PA capacity, or change in free-living PA behaviour; where there was a follow-up postintervention, the primary outcome will be rate of adherence to PA behaviour improvement. A three-phase sequential explanatory synthesis of mixed studies will be employed to answer the research questions. Homogenous quantitative data will be analysed using a random-effects model of meta-analysis with results presented as relative risk for dichotomous outcomes and as weighted or standardised means for continuous outcomes. Qualitative data will be analysed using thematic synthesis. This review protocol is reported according to the Preferred Reporting Items for Systematic review and Meta-Analysis Protocols (PRISMA-P) 2015 guidelines. Trial registration number CRD42015027314. PMID:27207628

  10. Improved derivatization protocol for simultaneous determination of alkylphenol ethoxylates and brominated flame retardants followed by gas chromatography-mass spectrometry analyses.

    PubMed

    Chokwe, T B; Okonkwo, J O; Sibali, L L; Ncube, E J

    2014-01-01

    An improved derivatization protocol for the simultaneous determination of alkylphenol ethoxylates and brominated flame retardants with heptafluorobutyric anhydride under triethylamine amine base was investigated. The derivatization reaction was completed in 30 min at 50 °C using hexane as solvent. Under these conditions, it was observed that alkylphenol ethoxylates and tetrabromobisphenol A were derivatized successfully in the presence of hexabromocyclododecane, lower congeners of polybrominated biphenyls and polybrominated diphenyl ethers. The improved protocol was applied to the recover of the analytes of interest from a simulated water sample after solid phase extraction. The recoveries achieved were above 60%. The limit of detection and limit of quantification ranged from 0.01-0.20 and 0.05-0.66 μg L(-1), respectively. The improved derivatization procedure was also successfully applied to determine trace amounts of these compounds in environmental water samples. The concentrations of the targeted analytes from the environmental samples were determined from limit of quantification. The levels of the targeted compounds in the environmental samples ranged from nd-7.63 ±2.83 μg L(-1).

  11. Development of an Improved Selective and Differential Medium for Isolation of Salmonella spp.

    PubMed Central

    Park, Sang-Hyun; Ryu, Sangryeol

    2012-01-01

    We describe an improved selective, differential, and cost-effective medium, XA medium, which contains d-arabinose, to facilitate the selective isolation of Salmonella spp. The sensitivity and the specificity of XA medium were compared to those of xylose lysine desoxycholate agar (XLD) using stock cultures and naturally contaminated food samples. XA medium and XLD were evaluated with a total of 82 Salmonella and 69 non-Salmonella stock cultures. Of 82 strains of Salmonella spp. tested, 76 produced a characteristic black colony on XA medium and XLD. The remaining 6 strains belonged to Salmonella enterica serovars Berta (n = 1), Paratyphi A (n = 1), Gallinarum (n = 2), and Pullorum (n = 2). The sensitivities of XA medium and XLD were identical (92.7%). Citrobacter freundii (n = 21) and Proteus mirabilis (n = 21) stock cultures produced black colonies on XLD, whereas only 4 strains of P. mirabilis appeared as black colonies on XA medium. In the second phase of the study, a total of 180 food samples were cultured onto XA medium and XLD after selective enrichment. The sensitivities of XA medium and XLD were equal (100%), and a total of 6 Salmonella strains were isolated from the 180 food samples. The specificity of XA medium (92.0%) was superior to that of XLD (73.0%), with a total of 14 and 47 false-positive results found on XA medium and XLD, respectively. On the basis of its good specificity, XA medium is useful for the isolation of Salmonella spp. from food samples. PMID:22814469

  12. Isolation and identification of bacteria to improve the strength of concrete.

    PubMed

    Krishnapriya, S; Venkatesh Babu, D L; G, Prince Arulraj

    2015-05-01

    The objective of this research work is to isolate and identify calcite precipitating bacteria and to check the suitability of these bacteria for use in concrete to improve its strength. Bacteria to be incorporated in concrete should be alkali resistant to endure the high pH of concrete and endospore forming to withstand the mechanical stresses induced in concrete during mixing. They must exhibit high urease activity to precipitate calcium carbonate in the form of calcite. Bacterial strains were isolated from alkaline soil samples of a cement factory and were tested for urease activity, potential to form endospores and precipitation of calcium carbonate. Based on these results, three isolates were selected and identified by 16S rRNA gene sequencing. They were identified as Bacillus megaterium BSKAU, Bacillus licheniformis BSKNAU and Bacillus flexus BSKNAU. The results were compared with B. megaterium MTCC 1684 obtained from Microbial Type Culture Collection and Gene Bank, Chandigarh, India. Experimental work was carried out to assess the influence of bacteria on the compressive strength and tests revealed that bacterial concrete specimens showed enhancement in compressive strength. The efficiency of bacteria toward crack healing was also tested. Substantial increase in strength and complete healing of cracks was observed in concrete specimens cast with B. megaterium BSKAU, B. licheniformis BSKNAU and B. megaterium MTCC 1684. This indicates the suitability of these bacterial strains for use in concrete. The enhancement of strength and healing of cracks can be attributed to the filling of cracks in concrete by calcite which was visualized by scanning electron microscope.

  13. Enriched environment increases neurogenesis and improves social memory persistence in socially isolated adult mice.

    PubMed

    Monteiro, Brisa M M; Moreira, Fabrício A; Massensini, André R; Moraes, Márcio F D; Pereira, Grace S

    2014-02-01

    Social memory consists of the information necessary to identify and recognize cospecifics and is essential to many forms of social interaction. Social memory persistence is strongly modulated by the animal's experiences. We have shown in previous studies that social isolation (SI) in adulthood impairs social memory persistence and that an enriched environment (EE) prevents this impairment. However, the mechanisms involved in the effects of SI and EE on social memory persistence remain unknown. We hypothesized that the mechanism by which SI and EE affect social memory persistence is through their modulation of neurogenesis. To investigate this hypothesis, adult mice were submitted to 7 days of one of the following conditions: group-housing in a standard (GH) or enriched environment (GH+EE); social isolation in standard (SI) or enriched environment (SI+EE). We observed an increase in the number of newborn neurons in the dentate gyrus of the hippocampus (DG) and glomerular layer of the olfactory bulb (OB) in both GH+EE and SI+EE mice. However, this increase of newborn neurons in the granule cell layer of the OB was restricted to the GH+EE group. Furthermore, both SI and SI+EE groups showed less neurogenesis in the mitral layer of the OB. Interestingly, the performance of the SI mice in the buried food-finding task was inferior to that of the GH mice. To further analyze whether increased neurogenesis is in fact the mechanism by which the EE improves social memory persistence in SI mice, we administered the mitotic inhibitor AraC or saline directly into the lateral ventricles of the SI+EE mice. We found that the AraC treatment decreased cell proliferation in both the DG and OB, and impaired social memory persistence in the SI+EE mice. Taken together, our results strongly suggest that neurogenesis is what supports social memory persistence in socially isolated mice.

  14. Improved tandem affinity purification tag and methods for isolation of protein heterocomplexes from plants.

    PubMed

    Rohila, Jai S; Chen, Mei; Cerny, Ronald; Fromm, Michael E

    2004-04-01

    A synthetic gene encoding the tandem affinity purification (TAP) tag has been constructed, and the TAP tag assayed for its effects on expression levels and subcellular localization by fusion to green fluorescent protein (GFP) as well as for its effects on steroid-dependent translocation to the nucleus and transcription when fused to a hybrid glucocorticoid receptor. A nuclear localization signal (NLS) was detected in the calmodulin-binding protein (CBP) domain and removed by mutation to improve the usefulness of the TAP tag. Additionally, purification improvements were made, including inhibition of a co-purifying protease, and adding a protein cross-linking step to increase the recovery of interacting proteins. The improved synthetic TAP tag gene and methods were used to isolate proteins interacting with the hybrid glucocorticoid receptor and to identify them by mass spectrometry. The two proteins identified, HSP70 and HSP90, are known to interact with the glucocorticoid receptor in vivo in mammalian cells and in vitro in plants.

  15. The Use of Variable Q1 Isolation Windows Improves Selectivity in LC-SWATH-MS Acquisition.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Ying; Bilbao, Aivett; Bruderer, Tobias; Luban, Jeremy; Strambio-De-Castillia, Caterina; Lisacek, Frédérique; Hopfgartner, Gérard; Varesio, Emmanuel

    2015-10-02

    As tryptic peptides and metabolites are not equally distributed along the mass range, the probability of cross fragment ion interference is higher in certain windows when fixed Q1 SWATH windows are applied. We evaluated the benefits of utilizing variable Q1 SWATH windows with regards to selectivity improvement. Variable windows based on equalizing the distribution of either the precursor ion population (PIP) or the total ion current (TIC) within each window were generated by an in-house software, swathTUNER. These two variable Q1 SWATH window strategies outperformed, with respect to quantification and identification, the basic approach using a fixed window width (FIX) for proteomic profiling of human monocyte-derived dendritic cells (MDDCs). Thus, 13.8 and 8.4% additional peptide precursors, which resulted in 13.1 and 10.0% more proteins, were confidently identified by SWATH using the strategy PIP and TIC, respectively, in the MDDC proteomic sample. On the basis of the spectral library purity score, some improvement warranted by variable Q1 windows was also observed, albeit to a lesser extent, in the metabolomic profiling of human urine. We show that the novel concept of "scheduled SWATH" proposed here, which incorporates (i) variable isolation windows and (ii) precursor retention time segmentation further improves both peptide and metabolite identifications.

  16. Improvement of polyvinyl alcohol properties by adding nanocrystalline cellulose isolated from banana pseudostems.

    PubMed

    Pereira, André Luís S; do Nascimento, Diego M; Souza Filho, Men de Sá M; Morais, João Paulo S; Vasconcelos, Niedja F; Feitosa, Judith P A; Brígida, Ana Iraidy S; Rosa, Morsyleide de F

    2014-11-04

    Cellulose nanocrystals (CNCs) isolated from banana pseudostems fibers (BPF) of the Pacovan variety were used as fillers in a polyvinyl alcohol (PVOH) matrix to yield a nanocomposite. The fibers from the external fractions of the BPF were alkaline bleached and hydrolyzed under acidic conditions (H2SO4 62% w/w, 70 min, 45 °C) to obtain CNCs with a length (L) of 135.0 ± 12.0 nm and a diameter (D) of 7.2 ± 1.9 nm to yield an aspect ratio (L/D) of 21.2. The CNCs were applied to PVOH films at different concentrations (0%, 1%, 3%, and 5% w/w, dry basis). With higher concentrations of CNCs, the water-vapor barrier of the films increased, while the optical properties changed very little. Increasing the concentration of the CNCs up to 3% significantly improved the mechanical properties of the nanocomposite.

  17. Isolation and Characterization of Brewer's Yeast Variants with Improved Fermentation Performance under High-Gravity Conditions▿

    PubMed Central

    Blieck, Lies; Toye, Geert; Dumortier, Françoise; Verstrepen, Kevin J.; Delvaux, Freddy R.; Thevelein, Johan M.; Van Dijck, Patrick

    2007-01-01

    To save energy, space, and time, today's breweries make use of high-gravity brewing in which concentrated medium (wort) is fermented, resulting in a product with higher ethanol content. After fermentation, the product is diluted to obtain beer with the desired alcohol content. While economically desirable, the use of wort with an even higher sugar concentration is limited by the inability of brewer's yeast (Saccharomyces pastorianus) to efficiently ferment such concentrated medium. Here, we describe a successful strategy to obtain yeast variants with significantly improved fermentation capacity under high-gravity conditions. We isolated better-performing variants of the industrial lager strain CMBS33 by subjecting a pool of UV-induced variants to consecutive rounds of fermentation in very-high-gravity wort (>22° Plato). Two variants (GT336 and GT344) showing faster fermentation rates and/or more-complete attenuation as well as improved viability under high ethanol conditions were identified. The variants displayed the same advantages in a pilot-scale stirred fermenter under high-gravity conditions at 11°C. Microarray analysis identified several genes whose altered expression may be responsible for the superior performance of the variants. The role of some of these candidate genes was confirmed by genetic transformation. Our study shows that proper selection conditions allow the isolation of variants of commercial brewer's yeast with superior fermentation characteristics. Moreover, it is the first study to identify genes that affect fermentation performance under high-gravity conditions. The results are of interest to the beer and bioethanol industries, where the use of more-concentrated medium is economically advantageous. PMID:17158628

  18. Isolation and characterization of brewer's yeast variants with improved fermentation performance under high-gravity conditions.

    PubMed

    Blieck, Lies; Toye, Geert; Dumortier, Françoise; Verstrepen, Kevin J; Delvaux, Freddy R; Thevelein, Johan M; Van Dijck, Patrick

    2007-02-01

    To save energy, space, and time, today's breweries make use of high-gravity brewing in which concentrated medium (wort) is fermented, resulting in a product with higher ethanol content. After fermentation, the product is diluted to obtain beer with the desired alcohol content. While economically desirable, the use of wort with an even higher sugar concentration is limited by the inability of brewer's yeast (Saccharomyces pastorianus) to efficiently ferment such concentrated medium. Here, we describe a successful strategy to obtain yeast variants with significantly improved fermentation capacity under high-gravity conditions. We isolated better-performing variants of the industrial lager strain CMBS33 by subjecting a pool of UV-induced variants to consecutive rounds of fermentation in very-high-gravity wort (>22 degrees Plato). Two variants (GT336 and GT344) showing faster fermentation rates and/or more-complete attenuation as well as improved viability under high ethanol conditions were identified. The variants displayed the same advantages in a pilot-scale stirred fermenter under high-gravity conditions at 11 degrees C. Microarray analysis identified several genes whose altered expression may be responsible for the superior performance of the variants. The role of some of these candidate genes was confirmed by genetic transformation. Our study shows that proper selection conditions allow the isolation of variants of commercial brewer's yeast with superior fermentation characteristics. Moreover, it is the first study to identify genes that affect fermentation performance under high-gravity conditions. The results are of interest to the beer and bioethanol industries, where the use of more-concentrated medium is economically advantageous.

  19. Application of a standardised protocol for hepatic venous pressure gradient measurement improves quality of readings and facilitates reduction of variceal bleeding in cirrhotics

    PubMed Central

    Tey, Tze Tong; Gogna, Apoorva; Irani, Farah Gillan; Too, Chow Wei; Lo, Hoau Gong Richard; Tan, Bien Soo; Tay, Kiang Hiong; Lui, Hock Foong; Chang, Pik Eu Jason

    2016-01-01

    INTRODUCTION Hepatic venous pressure gradient (HVPG) measurement is recommended for prognostic and therapeutic indications in centres with adequate resources and expertise. Our study aimed to evaluate the quality of HVPG measurements at our centre before and after introduction of a standardised protocol, and the clinical relevance of the HVPG to variceal bleeding in cirrhotics. METHODS HVPG measurements performed at Singapore General Hospital from 2005–2013 were retrospectively reviewed. Criteria for quality HVPG readings were triplicate readings, absence of negative pressure values and variability of ≤ 2 mmHg. The rate of variceal bleeding was compared in cirrhotics who achieved a HVPG response to pharmacotherapy (reduction of the HVPG to < 12 mmHg or by ≥ 20% of baseline) and those who did not. RESULTS 126 HVPG measurements were performed in 105 patients (mean age 54.7 ± 11.4 years; 55.2% men). 80% had liver cirrhosis and 20% had non-cirrhotic portal hypertension (NCPH). The mean overall HVPG was 13.5 ± 7.2 mmHg, with a significant difference between the cirrhosis and NCPH groups (p < 0.001). The proportion of quality readings significantly improved after the protocol was introduced. HVPG response was achieved in 28 (33.3%, n = 84) cirrhotics. Nine had variceal bleeding over a median follow-up of 29 months. The rate of variceal bleeding was significantly lower in HVPG responders compared to nonresponders (p = 0.025). CONCLUSION The quality of HVPG measurements in our centre improved after the introduction of a standardised protocol. A HVPG response can prognosticate the risk of variceal bleeding in cirrhotics. PMID:26996384

  20. Early Intervention with a Parent-Delivered Massage Protocol Directed at Tactile Abnormalities Decreases Severity of Autism and Improves Child-to-Parent Interactions: A Replication Study

    PubMed Central

    Silva, Louisa M. T.; Gabrielsen, Kristen R.; Budden, Sarojini S.; Buenrostro, Martha; Horton, Gretchen

    2015-01-01

    Tactile abnormalities are severe and universal in preschool children with autism. They respond well to treatment with a daily massage protocol directed at tactile abnormalities (QST massage for autism). Treatment is based on a model for autism proposing that tactile impairment poses a barrier to development. Two previous randomized controlled trials evaluating five months of massage treatment reported improvement of behavior, social/communication skills, and tactile and other sensory symptoms. This is the first report from a two-year replication study evaluating the protocol in 103 preschool children with autism. Parents gave daily treatment; trained staff gave weekly treatment and parent support. Five-month outcomes replicated earlier studies and showed normalization of receptive language (18%, P = .03), autistic behavior (32%, P = .006), total sensory abnormalities (38%, P = .0000005), tactile abnormalities (49%, P = .0002), and decreased autism severity (medium to large effect size, P = .008). In addition, parents reported improved child-to-parent interactions, bonding, and decreased parenting stress (44%, P = .00008). Early childhood special education programs are tasked with addressing sensory abnormalities and engaging parents in effective home programs. Until now, they have lacked research-based methods to do so. This program fulfills the need. It is recommended to parents and ECSE programs (ages 3–5) at autism diagnosis. PMID:25878901

  1. Improved functional properties of glycosylated soy protein isolate using D-glucose and xanthan gum.

    PubMed

    Li, Ruiqi; Hettiarachchy, Navam; Rayaprolu, Srinivas; Davis, Mike; Eswaranandam, Satchithanandam; Jha, Alok; Chen, Pengyin

    2015-09-01

    Functional properties of the soy protein need to improve to have better applications in food industry. Alkali extracted and acid precipitated soy protein isolate (SPI) was glycosylated using D-glucose (G) and Xanthan gum (X) via Maillard reaction to improve solubility. The effects of SPI to G and SPI to X ratios (SPI:G = 2:1, 1:1, and 1:2; SPI:X = 100:1 and 10:1) and incubation time (0, 6, 12, and 24 h) on the solubility and functional properties of glycosylated SPI were evaluated. The SPI:G ratio of 1:2 yielded a maximum degree of glycosylation of 71.1 %. The solubility of SPI after glycosylation significantly increased (P < 0.05) at pH 4.0-8.0 compared to SPI alone. Although the emulsion stability of glycosylated SPIs has not significantly increased (P > 0.05), the emulsifying activity improved significantly (P < 0.05). Glycosylation with SPI-X at a ratio of 10: 1 showed maximum emulsifying activity of 191.6 m(2)/g (SPI alone: 66.3 m(2)/g). Moreover, the SPI:X (ratio of 100:1) showed the maximum foaming activity (205 mL) compared to SPI alone (155 mL). The foaming stability of SPI (2.6 %) increased to 5.5 and 8.2 % when using xanthan gum at the ratio of 100:1 and 10:1, respectively. Glycosylated SPI with enhanced emulsifying and foaming properties has potential to improve the functional quality of the food products.

  2. Improving the communication reliability of body sensor networks based on the IEEE 802.15.4 protocol.

    PubMed

    Gomes, Diogo; Afonso, José A

    2014-03-01

    Body sensor networks (BSNs) enable continuous monitoring of patients anywhere, with minimum constraints to daily life activities. Although the IEEE 802.15.4 and ZigBee(®) (ZigBee Alliance, San Ramon, CA) standards were mainly developed for use in wireless sensors network (WSN) applications, they are also widely used in BSN applications because of device characteristics such as low power, low cost, and small form factor. However, compared with WSNs, BSNs present some very distinctive characteristics in terms of traffic and mobility patterns, heterogeneity of the nodes, and quality of service requirements. This article evaluates the suitability of the carrier sense multiple access-collision avoidance protocol, used by the IEEE 802.15.4 and ZigBee standards, for data-intensive BSN applications, through the execution of experimental tests in different evaluation scenarios, in order to take into account the effects of contention, clock drift, and hidden nodes on the communication reliability. Results show that the delivery ratio may decrease substantially during transitory periods, which can last for several minutes, to a minimum of 90% with retransmissions and 13% without retransmissions. This article also proposes and evaluates the performance of the BSN contention avoidance mechanism, which was designed to solve the identified reliability problems. This mechanism was able to restore the delivery ratio to 100% even in the scenario without retransmissions.

  3. Effect of hydrogen peroxide on improving the heat stability of whey protein isolate solutions.

    PubMed

    Sutariya, Suresh; Patel, Hasmukh

    2017-05-15

    Whey protein isolate (WPI) solutions (12.8%w/w protein) were treated with varying concentrations of H2O2 in the range of 0-0.144 H2O2 to protein ratios (HTPR) by the addition of the required quantity of H2O2 and deionized water. The samples were analyzed for heat stability, rheological properties, denaturation level of β-lactoglobulin (β-LG) and α-lactalbumin (α-LA). The samples treated with H2O2 concentration >0.072 (HTPR) showed significant improvement in the heat stability, and decreased whey protein denaturation and aggregation. The WPI solution treated with H2O2 (>0.072 HTPR) remained in the liquid state after heat treatment at 120°C, whereas the control samples formed gel upon heat treatment. Detailed analysis of these samples suggested that the improvement in the heat stability of H2O2 treated WPI solution was attributed to the significant reduction in the sulfhydryl-disulfide interchange reaction during denaturation of β-LG and α-LA.

  4. Engineered antibody CH2 domains binding to nucleolin: Isolation, characterization and improvement of aggregation.

    PubMed

    Li, De-Zhi; Gong, Rui; Zheng, Jun; Chen, Xi-Hai; Dimitrov, Dimiter S; Zhao, Qi

    2017-02-12

    Smaller recombinant antibody fragments are now emerging as alternatives of conventional antibodies. Especially, immunoglobulin (Ig) constant CH2 domain and engineered CH2 with improved stability are promising as scaffolds for selection of specific binders to various antigens. We constructed a yeast display library based on an engineered human IgG1 CH2 scaffold with diversified loop regions. A group of CH2 binders were isolated from this yeast display library by panning against nucleolin, which is a tumor-associated antigen involved in cell proliferation, tumor cell growth and angiogenesis. Out of 20 mutants, we selected 3 clones exhibiting relatively high affinities to nucleolin on yeasts. However, recombinant CH2 mutants aggregated when they were expressed. To find the mechanism of the aggregation, we employed computational prediction approaches through structural homology models of CH2 binders. The analysis of potential aggregation prone regions (APRs) and solvent accessible surface areas (ASAs) indicated two hydrophobic residues, Val264 and Leu309, in the β-sheet, in which replacement of both charged residues led to significantly decrease of the protein aggregation. The newly identified CH2 binders could be improved to use as candidate therapeutics or research reagents in the future.

  5. A manual-based individual therapy to improve metacognition in schizophrenia: protocol of a multi-center RCT

    PubMed Central

    2014-01-01

    Background Metacognitive dysfunction has been widely recognized as a feature of schizophrenia. As it is linked with deficits in several aspects of daily life functioning, improvement of metacognition may lead to improvement in functioning. Individual psychotherapy might be a useful form of treatment to improve metacognition in patients with schizophrenia; multiple case reports and a pilot study show promising results. The present study aims to measure the effectiveness of an individual, manual-based therapy (Metacognitive Reflection and Insight Therapy, MERIT) in improving metacognition in patients with schizophrenia. We also want to examine if improvement in metacognitive abilities is correlated with improvements in aspects of daily life functioning namely social functioning, experience of symptoms, quality of life, depression, work readiness, insight and experience of stigma. Methods/Design MERIT is currently evaluated in a multicenter randomized controlled trial. Thirteen therapists in six mental health institutions in the Netherlands participate in this study. Patients are randomly assigned to either MERIT or the control condition: treatment as usual (TAU). Discussion If proven effective, MERIT can be a useful addition to the care for schizophrenia patients. The design brings along some methodological difficulties, these issues are addressed in the discussion of this paper. Trial registration Current Controlled Trials: ISRCTN16659871. PMID:24490942

  6. Robust Optimization of Biological Protocols

    PubMed Central

    Flaherty, Patrick; Davis, Ronald W.

    2015-01-01

    When conducting high-throughput biological experiments, it is often necessary to develop a protocol that is both inexpensive and robust. Standard approaches are either not cost-effective or arrive at an optimized protocol that is sensitive to experimental variations. We show here a novel approach that directly minimizes the cost of the protocol while ensuring the protocol is robust to experimental variation. Our approach uses a risk-averse conditional value-at-risk criterion in a robust parameter design framework. We demonstrate this approach on a polymerase chain reaction protocol and show that our improved protocol is less expensive than the standard protocol and more robust than a protocol optimized without consideration of experimental variation. PMID:26417115

  7. Continuous Improvement and the Safety Case for the Waste Isolation Pilot Plant Geologic Repository - 13467

    SciTech Connect

    Van Luik, Abraham; Patterson, Russell; Nelson, Roger; Leigh, Christi

    2013-07-01

    The Waste Isolation Pilot Plant (WIPP) is a geologic repository 2150 feet (650 m) below the surface of the Chihuahuan desert near Carlsbad, New Mexico. WIPP permanently disposes of transuranic waste from national defense programs. Every five years, the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) submits an application to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to request regulatory-compliance re-certification of the facility for another five years. Every ten years, DOE submits an application to the New Mexico Environment Department (NMED) for the renewal of its hazardous waste disposal permit. The content of the applications made by DOE to the EPA for re-certification, and to the NMED for permit-renewal, reflect any optimization changes made to the facility, with regulatory concurrence if warranted by the nature of the change. DOE points to such changes as evidence for its having taken seriously its 'continuous improvement' operations and management philosophy. Another opportunity for continuous improvement is to look at any delta that may exist between the re-certification and re-permitting cases for system safety and the consensus advice on the nature and content of a safety case as being developed and published by the Nuclear Energy Agency's Integration Group for the Safety Case (IGSC) expert group. DOE at WIPP, with the aid of its Science Advisor and teammate, Sandia National Laboratories, is in the process of discerning what can be done, in a reasonably paced and cost-conscious manner, to continually improve the case for repository safety that is being made to the two primary regulators on a recurring basis. This paper will discuss some aspects of that delta and potential paths forward to addressing them. (authors)

  8. Optimising text messaging to improve adherence to web-based smoking cessation treatment: a randomised control trial protocol

    PubMed Central

    Graham, Amanda L; Jacobs, Megan A; Cohn, Amy M; Cha, Sarah; Abroms, Lorien C; Papandonatos, George D; Whittaker, Robyn

    2016-01-01

    Introduction Millions of smokers use the Internet for smoking cessation assistance each year; however, most smokers engage minimally with even the best designed websites. The ubiquity of mobile devices and their effectiveness in promoting adherence in other areas of health behaviour change make them a promising tool to address adherence in Internet smoking cessation interventions. Text messaging is used by most adults, and messages can proactively encourage use of a web-based intervention. Text messaging can also be integrated with an Internet intervention to facilitate the use of core Internet intervention components. Methods and analysis We identified four aspects of a text message intervention that may enhance its effectiveness in promoting adherence to a web-based smoking cessation programme: personalisation, integration, dynamic tailoring and message intensity. Phase I will use a two-level full factorial design to test the impact of these four experimental features on adherence to a web-based intervention. The primary outcome is a composite metric of adherence that incorporates general utilisation metrics (eg, logins, page views) and specific feature utilisation shown to predict abstinence. Participants will be N=860 adult smokers who register on an established Internet cessation programme and enrol in its text message programme. Phase II will be a two-arm randomised trial to compare the efficacy of the web-based cessation programme alone and in conjunction with the optimised text messaging intervention on 30-day point prevalence abstinence at 9 months. Phase II participants will be N=600 adult smokers who register to use an established Internet cessation programme and enrol in text messaging. Secondary analyses will explore whether adherence mediates the effect of treatment condition on outcome. Ethics and dissemination This protocol was approved by Chesapeake IRB. We will disseminate study results through peer-reviewed manuscripts and conference

  9. Antithrombotic stewardship: a multidisciplinary team approach towards improving antithrombotic therapy outcomes during and after hospitalisation: a study protocol

    PubMed Central

    Dreijer, Albert R; Kruip, Marieke J H A; Diepstraten, Jeroen; Polinder, Suzanne; Brouwer, Rolf; Leebeek, Frank W G; Vulto, Arnold G; van den Bemt, Patricia M L A

    2016-01-01

    Introduction Antithrombotic therapy carries high risks for patient safety. Antithrombotics belong to the top 5 medications involved in potentially preventable hospital admissions related to medication. To provide a standard for antithrombotic therapy and stress the importance of providing optimal care to patients on antithrombotic therapy, the Landelijke Standaard Ketenzorg Antistolling (LSKA; Dutch guideline on integrated antithrombotic care) was drafted. However, the mere publication of this guideline does not guarantee its implementation. This may require a multidisciplinary team effort. Therefore, we designed a study aiming to determine the influence of hospital-based antithrombotic stewardship on the effect and safety of antithrombotic therapy outcomes during and after hospitalisation. Methods and analysis In this study, the effect of the implementation of a multidisciplinary antithrombotic team is compared with usual care using a pre-post study design. The study is performed at the Erasmus University Medical Center Rotterdam and the Reinier de Graaf Hospital Delft. Patients who are or will be treated with antithrombotics are included in the study. We aim to include 1900 patients, 950 in each hospital. Primary outcome is the proportion of patients with a composite end point consisting of ≥1 bleeding or ≥1 thrombotic event from the beginning of antithrombotic therapy (or hospitalisation) until 3 months after hospitalisation. Bleeding is defined according to the International Society of Thrombosis and Haemostasis (ISTH) classification. A thrombotic event is defined as any objectively confirmed arterial or venous thrombosis, including acute myocardial infarction or stroke for arterial thrombosis and deep venous thrombosis or pulmonary embolism or venous thrombosis. An economic evaluation is performed to determine whether the implementation of the multidisciplinary antithrombotic team will be cost-effective. Ethics and dissemination This protocol was

  10. Performance improvements of MOEMS-based diffractive arrays: address isolation and optical switching

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Panaman, Ganesh; Madison, Seth; Sano, Michael; Castracane, James

    2005-01-01

    Micro-Opto-Electro-Mechanical Systems (MOEMS) have found a variety of applications in fields such as telecommunications, spectroscopy and display technology. MOEMS-based optical switching is currently under investigation for the increased flexibility that such devices provide for reconfiguration of the I/O network for inter-chip communication applications. This potential not only adds an additional degree of freedom for adjustment of transmitter/receiver links but also allows for fine alignment of individual channels in the network link. Further, this use of diffractive arrays for specific applications combines beam steering/adjustment capabilities with the inherent wavelength dependence of the diffractive approach for channel separation and de-multiplexing. Research and development has been concentrated on the progression from single MOEMS components to parallel arrays integrated with optical source arrays for a successful feasibility demonstration. Successful development of such an approach will have a major impact of the next generation communication protocols. This paper will focus on the current status of the MOEMS research program for Free Space Optical inter-chip communication at the College of NanoScale Science and Engineering, University at Albany-SUNY (CNSE). New versions of diffractive arrays stemming from the basic MEMS Compound Grating (MCG; patent #5,999,319) have been produced through various fabrication methods including the MUMPs process1. Most MEMS components relying on electrostatic actuation tend to require high actuation voltages (>20V) compared to the typical 5V levels prevalent in conventional integrated circuits. The specific goal is to yield improved performance while minimizing the power consumption of the components. Structural modifications through the variation in the ruling/electrode spacing distance and array wiring layout through individually addressable gratings have been studied to understand effects on the actuation voltage and

  11. Molecular typing of Japanese field isolates and live commercial vaccine strain of Mycoplasma synoviae using improved pulsed-field gel electrophoresis and vlhA gene sequencing.

    PubMed

    Harada, Kazuki; Kijima-Tanaka, Mayumi; Uchiyama, Mariko; Yamamoto, Tomoko; Oishi, Koji; Arao, Megumi; Takahashi, Toshio

    2009-12-01

    In the present study, pulsed-field gel electrophoresis (PFGE) and vlhA gene sequence analysis were applied and verified for typing the Mycoplasma synoviae live vaccine MS-H strain and field isolates from diseased chickens in Japan. The previously published PFGE protocol using SmaI digestion could not allow the discrimination of two of the 11 M. synoviae field isolates from the vaccine strain and had relatively low discrimination power (D = 0.885). On the other hand, our new PFGE protocols using BlnI and BamHI digestions as well as the vlhA sequence analysis allowed the discrimination of all 11 M. synoviae field isolates from the vaccine strain. In addition, these PFGE protocols using BlnI and BamHI digestions generated unique fragment patterns in epidemiologically unrelated isolates, including those with identical SmaI-digested patterns or vlhA gene sequences (D = 0.987 and 1.000, respectively), and generated indistinguishable or closely related patterns in epidemiologically related isolates. Therefore, we believe that they would be useful tools to determine whether M. synoviae clinical isolates from diseased chickens are derived from the vaccine strain or wild-type strain and to further elucidate the epidemiology of M. synoviae infection.

  12. Investigating the organisational impacts of quality improvement: a protocol for a realist evaluation of improvement approaches drawing on the Resource Based View of the Firm

    PubMed Central

    Burton, Christopher R; Rycroft Malone, Jo; Robert, Glenn; Willson, Alan; Hopkins, Angela

    2014-01-01

    Introduction Little is understood about the role of quality improvement in enabling health organisations to survive and thrive in the contemporary context of financial and economic challenges. We will draw on the theoretical foundations of the ‘Resource Based View of the Firm’ (RBV) to develop insights into why health organisations engage in improvement work, how impacts are conceptualised, and ‘what works’ in delivering these impacts. Specifically, RBV theorises that the mix and use of resources across different organisations may explain differences in performance. Whether improvement work influences these resources is unclear. Methods and analysis Case study research will be conducted across health organisations participating in four approaches to improvement, including: a national improvement programme; a multiorganisational partnership around implementation; an organisational strategy for quality improvement; and a coproduction project designed to enhance the experience of a clinical service from the perspective of patients. Data will comprise in-depth interviews with key informants, observation of key events and documents; analysed within and then across cases. Adopting a realist perspective, the core tenets of RBV will be evaluated as a programme theory, focusing on the interplay between organisational conditions and behavioural or resource responses that are reported through engagement in improvement. Ethics and dissemination The study has been approved by Bangor University Ethics Committee. The investigation will not judge the relative merits of different approaches to healthcare quality improvement. Rather, we will develop unique insights into the organisational consequences, and dependencies of quality improvement, providing an opportunity to add to the explanatory potential of RBV in this and other contexts. In addition to scientific and lay reports of the study findings, research outputs will include a framework for constructing the economic

  13. Spatial and temporal variability of compound-specific stable isotope (CSSI) biomarkers in soil and sediment tracing: towards improved sampling protocols

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Reiffarth, Dominic; Petticrew, Ellen; Owens, Philip; Lobb, David

    2016-04-01

    The use of CSSI in biomarkers, specifically fatty acids and derivatives thereof, has recently been investigated as a potential tracer in soil and sediment fingerprinting. The use of CSSIs is of interest because of the potential to discern sediment providence based on land use, which is often difficult or not possible with other tracing techniques alone, such as geochemistry and fallout radionuclides. However, challenges exist in producing a representative sample of potential source materials. This presentation focuses on the development of improved protocols for sample collection. The data presented here are part of a larger investigation into using CSSIs as tracers in an agricultural watershed (South Tobacco Creek) in southern Manitoba, Canada. Extensive sampling was performed throughout the 2012 and 2013 growing seasons in several locations within the watershed, with a focus on capturing within and between field spatial and temporal variability in one particular sub-watershed (the "Stepler" watershed). The Stepler watershed provided a unique opportunity to perform sampling in a natural environment where agricultural crops were hydrologically separated, thereby allowing for a sampling regime of transects strategically placed with little influence from nearby crops. A portion of the data which has been analyzed, showing temporal and spatial variability in terms of carbon stable isotope signal, biomarker concentrations and soil organic carbon, is presented. As CSSI protocols for tracing are still in development, these data aid in determining the robustness of the technique as well as helping to inform sampling approaches.

  14. Human endothelial colony-forming cells expanded with an improved protocol are a useful endothelial cell source for scaffold-based tissue engineering.

    PubMed

    Denecke, Bernd; Horsch, Liska D; Radtke, Stefan; Fischer, Johannes C; Horn, Peter A; Giebel, Bernd

    2015-11-01

    One of the major challenges in tissue engineering is to supply larger three-dimensional (3D) bioengineered tissue transplants with sufficient amounts of nutrients and oxygen and to allow metabolite removal. Consequently, artificial vascularization strategies of such transplants are desired. One strategy focuses on endothelial cells capable of initiating new vessel formation, which are settled on scaffolds commonly used in tissue engineering. A bottleneck in this strategy is to obtain sufficient amounts of endothelial cells, as they can be harvested only in small quantities directly from human tissues. Thus, protocols are required to expand appropriate cells in sufficient amounts without interfering with their capability to settle on scaffold materials and to initiate vessel formation. Here, we analysed whether umbilical cord blood (CB)-derived endothelial colony-forming cells (ECFCs) fulfil these requirements. In a first set of experiments, we showed that marginally expanded ECFCs settle and survive on different scaffold biomaterials. Next, we improved ECFC culture conditions and developed a protocol for ECFC expansion compatible with 'Good Manufacturing Practice' (GMP) standards. We replaced animal sera with human platelet lysates and used a novel type of tissue-culture ware. ECFCs cultured under the new conditions revealed significantly lower apoptosis and increased proliferation rates. Simultaneously, their viability was increased. Since extensively expanded ECFCs could still settle on scaffold biomaterials and were able to form tubular structures in Matrigel assays, we conclude that these ex vivo-expanded ECFCs are a novel, very potent cell source for scaffold-based tissue engineering.

  15. Determining Specificity of Motor Imagery Training for Upper Limb Improvement in Chronic Stroke Patients: A Training Protocol and Pilot Results

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Craje, Celine

    2010-01-01

    Motor imagery (MI) refers to the mental rehearsal of a movement without actual motor output. MI training has positive effects on upper limb recovery after stroke. However, until now it is unclear whether this effect is specific to the trained task or a more general motor skill improvement. This study was set up to advance our insights into the…

  16. The Internal Coherence Assessment Protocol & Developmental Framework: Building the Organizational Capacity for Instructional Improvement in Schools. Research Paper

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Elmore, Richard F.; Forman, Michelle L.; Stosich, Elizabeth L.; Bocala, Candice

    2014-01-01

    Purpose: In this paper we describe the Internal Coherence (IC) model of assessment and professional development, a set of clinical tools and practices designed to help practitioners foster the organizational conditions required for whole-school instructional improvement. Proposed Conceptual Argument: We argue that the data captured by the IC…

  17. Improved Picture Naming in Chronic Aphasia after Tms to Part of Right Broca's Area: An Open-Protocol Study

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Naeser, M.A.; Martin, P.I.; Nicholas, M.; Baker, E.H.; Seekins, H.; Kobayashi, M.; Theoret, H.; Fregni, F.; Maria-Tormos, J.; Kurland, J.; Doron, K.W.; Pascual-Leone, A.

    2005-01-01

    Functional imaging studies with nonfluent aphasia patients have observed ''over-activation'' in right (R) language homologues. This may represent a maladaptive strategy; suppression may result in language improvement. We applied slow, 1 Hz repetitive transcranial magnetic stimulation (rTMS) to an anterior portion of R Broca's homologue daily, for…

  18. A multi-level system quality improvement intervention to reduce racial disparities in hypertension care and control: study protocol

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    Background Racial disparities in blood pressure control have been well documented in the United States. Research suggests that many factors contribute to this disparity, including barriers to care at patient, clinician, healthcare system, and community levels. To date, few interventions aimed at reducing hypertension disparities have addressed factors at all of these levels. This paper describes the design of Project ReD CHiP (Reducing Disparities and Controlling Hypertension in Primary Care), a multi-level system quality improvement project. By intervening on multiple levels, this project aims to reduce disparities in blood pressure control and improve guideline concordant hypertension care. Methods Using a pragmatic trial design, we are implementing three complementary multi-level interventions designed to improve blood pressure measurement, provide patient care management services and offer expanded provider education resources in six primary care clinics in Baltimore, Maryland. We are staggering the introduction of the interventions and will use Statistical Process Control (SPC) charting to determine if there are changes in outcomes at each clinic after implementation of each intervention. The main hypothesis is that each intervention will have an additive effect on improvements in guideline concordant care and reductions in hypertension disparities, but the combination of all three interventions will result in the greatest impact, followed by blood pressure measurement with care management support, blood pressure measurement with provider education, and blood pressure measurement only. This study also examines how organizational functioning and cultural competence affect the success of the interventions. Discussion As a quality improvement project, Project ReD CHiP employs a novel study design that specifically targets multi-level factors known to contribute to hypertension disparities. To facilitate its implementation and improve its sustainability, we have

  19. Does early intervention improve outcomes in physiotherapy management of lumbar radicular syndrome? A mixed-methods study protocol

    PubMed Central

    Walters, Stephen J; Baxter, Susan

    2017-01-01

    Introduction Lumbar radicular syndrome (LRS) can be a painful and debilitating condition. The optimum management strategies and their timing remain elusive despite extensive research. Surgery provides good short-term outcomes but has concomitant risks and costs. Physiotherapy is commonly practised for patients with LRS but its effects remain equivocal and there is a lack of consensus on the type, duration and timing of physiotherapy intervention. There is a lack of high-quality evidence into new and innovative management strategies and the timings of those strategies for LRS. This pilot trial is an essential preliminary to a definitive randomised controlled trial (RCT) assessing the effectiveness and cost-effectiveness of early physiotherapy intervention for patients with LRS. The study will test the protocol, the intervention, the use of outcome measures and the ability to set-up and run the trial to enable refinement of a future definitive RCT. Methods and analysis This is a mixed-methods study encompassing an external pilot RCT with integrated qualitative interviews with patients, clinicians and other key stakeholders. 80 patients will be recruited from primary care and randomised, after consent into 1 of 2 groups. Both groups will receive individually tailored, goal orientated physiotherapy. The usual care group will begin their physiotherapy 6 weeks after randomisation and the intervention group at 2 weeks after randomisation. Outcome measures will primarily be feasibility parameters including the ability to recruit and retain patients and to deliver the intervention. Data will be collected at baseline, and 6, 12 and 26 weeks following randomisation. Ethics and dissemination The study has received favourable ethical review from the East of Scotland Research Ethics Service (EoSRES) on the 20 August 2015 (15/ES/0130). Recruitment began on the 1 March 2016 and is expected to close in January 2017. Data collection is anticipated to be complete in July 2017

  20. Communication complexity protocols for qutrits

    SciTech Connect

    Tamir, Boaz

    2007-03-15

    Consider a function where its entries are distributed among many parties. Suppose each party is allowed to send only a limited amount of information to a referee. The referee can use a classical protocol to compute the value of the global function. Is there a quantum protocol improving the results of all classical protocols? In a recent work Brukner et al. showed the deep connection between such problems and the theory of Bell inequalities. Here we generalize the theory to trits. There, the best classical protocol fails whereas the quantum protocol yields the correct answer.

  1. Glutathione Ethyl Ester Supplementation during Pancreatic Islet Isolation Improves Viability and Transplant Outcomes in a Murine Marginal Islet Mass Model

    PubMed Central

    Raposo do Amaral, Alexandre S.; Pawlick, Rena L.; Rodrigues, Erika; Costal, Flavia; Pepper, Andrew; Ferreira Galvão, Flávio H.; Correa-Giannella, Maria Lucia; Shapiro, A. M.James

    2013-01-01

    Background The success of pancreatic islet transplantation still faces many challenges, mainly related to cell damage during islet isolation and early post-transplant. The increased generation of reactive oxygen species (ROS) during islet isolation and the consumption of antioxidant defenses appear to be an important pathway related to islet damage. Methodology/Principal Findings In the present study we evaluated whether supplementation of glutathione-ethyl-ester (GEE) during islet isolation could improve islet viability and transplant outcomes in a murine marginal islet mass model. We also cultured human islets for 24 hours in standard CMRL media with or without GEE supplementation. Supplementation of GEE decreased the content of ROS in isolated islets, leading to a decrease in apoptosis and maintenance of islet viability. A higher percentage of mice transplanted with a marginal mass of GEE treated islets became euglycemic after transplant. The supplementation of 20 mM GEE in cultured human islets significantly reduced the apoptosis rate in comparison to untreated islets. Conclusions/Significance GEE supplementation was able to decrease the apoptosis rate and intracellular content of ROS in isolated islets and might be considered a potential intervention to improve islet viability during the isolation process and maintenance in culture before islet transplantation. PMID:23424628

  2. A lectin-based isolation/enrichment strategy for improved coverage of N-glycan analysis.

    PubMed

    Guan, Feng; Tan, Zengqi; Li, Xiang; Pang, Xingchen; Zhu, Yunlin; Li, Dongliang; Yang, Ganglong

    2015-10-30

    Glycomics provides an increasingly useful research tool as the genomes and proteomes of more and more animal species are elucidated. In view of the general complexity and heterogeneity of glycans, improved depth-of-coverage and sensitivity are required for glycosylation analysis. In this study, we established the lectin-based isolation/enrichment strategy for total glycomic information. Specific lectins are added onto the filter to capture corresponding glycans prior to release of N-glycans by peptide N-glycosidase F (PNGase F). Non-bound glycans and bound glycans are released and analyzed by matrix-assisted laser desorption/ionization time-of-flight mass spectrometry (MALDI-TOF-MS), respectively. Application of the strategy to chicken ovalbumin, normal mouse mammary epithelial cells (NMuMG), and human serum resulted in detection of 5, 6, and 11 additional N-glycan structures, respectively. The strategy facilitates identification of intact N-glycans in biological samples, and can be extended to detailed analysis of O-glycome or glycoproteome.

  3. Simultaneous Deposition of Mass Selected Anions and Cations: Improvements in Ion Delivery for Matrix Isolation Experiments

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Goodrich, Michael E.; Moore, David T.

    2016-06-01

    A focus of the research in our group has been to develop improved methods for ion delivery in matrix isolation experiments. We have previously reported a method to co-deposit low energy, mass selected metal anions and a rare gas counter cation.a A modification allowing for mass selection of both the anion and cation will be discussed. Results from preliminary experiments of mass selected, low energy Cu- and SF5+ will also be highlighted. To our knowledge, these experiments are the first time two mass selected beams of ions have been simultaneously deposited into a cryogenic matrix. Co-deposition of the ions into an argon matrix doped with 0.02% CO at 20K resulted in the observation of bands assigned to SF5+ and anionic copper carbonyl complexes, Cu(CO)n- (n=1-3). Upon irradiation of the matrix with a narrow band, blue LED, the copper carbonyl complexes are converted to the neutral analogues, while the fate of the photodetached electrons can be directly tracked, as a decrease of the SF5+ band and a growth of the neutral SF5 band are observed. aLudwig, R. M.; Moore, D. T.; J. Chem. Phys. 139, 244202 (2013).

  4. Effect of improved hydrogen supply on energy state, ureogenesis and gluconeogenesis in isolated hepatocytes.

    PubMed

    Letko, G; Halangk, W

    1986-01-01

    The cellular energy state as well as ureogenesis and gluconeogenesis as ATP-consuming processes were studied as a function of hydrogen supply of mitochondria in isolated hepatocytes. Even though the ATP turnover was quite different during ureogenesis and gluconeogenesis and in the absence of these syntheses both the safranine signals (as a probe for the mitochondrial membrane potential) and the total ATP contents of the cells did not vary to a great extent. Partial uncoupling by FCCP destroyed the mitochondrial membrane potential and decreased the cellular ATP totally. Under these conditions the presence of ornithine plus lactate maintained a measurable membrane potential and ATP level. In order to demonstrate the relevance of hydrogen supply of mitochondria to the syntheses of glucose and urea, the load on energy metabolism was additionally increased by partial uncoupling, and the cells were incubated in a parallel mode in Krebs-Henseleit buffer and an 80 mM succinate containing medium, the latter forcing succinate into the cells. After partial uncoupling, ureogenesis and gluconeogenesis as well as the ATP level were seen to decrease markedly in Krebs-Henseleit buffer, whereas in the succinate medium the improved hydrogen supply of mitochondria counteracted the drain by FCCP, and substantially higher rates of the syntheses and elevated ATP levels were maintained.

  5. An Improved Syringe Agroinfiltration Protocol to Enhance Transformation Efficiency by Combinative Use of 5-Azacytidine, Ascorbate Acid and Tween-20.

    PubMed

    Zhao, Huimin; Tan, Zilong; Wen, Xuejing; Wang, Yucheng

    2017-02-14

    Syringe infiltration is an important transient transformation method that is widely used in many molecular studies. Owing to the wide use of syringe agroinfiltration, it is important and necessary to improve its transformation efficiency. Here, we studied the factors influencing the transformation efficiency of syringe agroinfiltration. The pCAMBIA1301 was transformed into Nicotiana benthamiana leaves for investigation. The effects of 5-azacytidine (AzaC), Ascorbate acid (ASC) and Tween-20 on transformation were studied. The β-glucuronidase (GUS) expression and GUS activity were respectively measured to determine the transformation efficiency. AzaC, ASC and Tween-20 all significantly affected the transformation efficiency of agroinfiltration, and the optimal concentrations of AzaC, ASC and Tween-20 for the transgene expression were identified. Our results showed that 20 μM AzaC, 0.56 mM ASC and 0.03% (v/v) Tween-20 is the optimal concentration that could significantly improve the transformation efficiency of agroinfiltration. Furthermore, a combined supplement of 20 μM AzaC, 0.56 mM ASC and 0.03% Tween-20 improves the expression of transgene better than any one factor alone, increasing the transgene expression by more than 6-fold. Thus, an optimized syringe agroinfiltration was developed here, which might be a powerful method in transient transformation analysis.

  6. REFLEX, a social-cognitive group treatment to improve insight in schizophrenia: study protocol of a multi-center RCT

    PubMed Central

    2011-01-01

    Background Insight is impaired in a majority of people with schizophrenia. Impaired insight is associated with poorer outcomes of the disorder. Based on existing literature, we developed a model that explains which processes may possibly play a role in impaired insight. This model was the starting point of the development of REFLEX: a brief psychosocial intervention to improve insight in schizophrenia. REFLEX is a 12-sessions group training, consisting of three modules of four sessions each. Modules in this intervention are: "coping with stigma", "you and your personal narrative", and "you in the present". Methods/Design REFLEX is currently evaluated in a multicenter randomized controlled trial. Eight mental health institutions in the Netherlands participate in this evaluation. Patients are randomly assigned to either REFLEX or an active control condition, existing of cognitive remediation exercises in a group. In a subgroup of patients, fMRI scans are made before and after training in order to assess potential haemodynamic changes associated with the effects of the training. Discussion REFLEX is one of the few interventions aiming specifically to improving insight in schizophrenia and has potential value for improving insight. Targeting insight in schizophrenia is a complex task, that comes with several methodological issues. These issues are addressed in the discussion of this paper. Trial registration Current Controlled Trials: ISRCTN50247539 PMID:21975132

  7. An Improved Syringe Agroinfiltration Protocol to Enhance Transformation Efficiency by Combinative Use of 5-Azacytidine, Ascorbate Acid and Tween-20

    PubMed Central

    Zhao, Huimin; Tan, Zilong; Wen, Xuejing; Wang, Yucheng

    2017-01-01

    Syringe infiltration is an important transient transformation method that is widely used in many molecular studies. Owing to the wide use of syringe agroinfiltration, it is important and necessary to improve its transformation efficiency. Here, we studied the factors influencing the transformation efficiency of syringe agroinfiltration. The pCAMBIA1301 was transformed into Nicotiana benthamiana leaves for investigation. The effects of 5-azacytidine (AzaC), Ascorbate acid (ASC) and Tween-20 on transformation were studied. The β-glucuronidase (GUS) expression and GUS activity were respectively measured to determine the transformation efficiency. AzaC, ASC and Tween-20 all significantly affected the transformation efficiency of agroinfiltration, and the optimal concentrations of AzaC, ASC and Tween-20 for the transgene expression were identified. Our results showed that 20 μM AzaC, 0.56 mM ASC and 0.03% (v/v) Tween-20 is the optimal concentration that could significantly improve the transformation efficiency of agroinfiltration. Furthermore, a combined supplement of 20 μM AzaC, 0.56 mM ASC and 0.03% Tween-20 improves the expression of transgene better than any one factor alone, increasing the transgene expression by more than 6-fold. Thus, an optimized syringe agroinfiltration was developed here, which might be a powerful method in transient transformation analysis. PMID:28216553

  8. Study protocol: using the Q-STEPS to assess and improve the quality of physical activity programmes for the elderly

    PubMed Central

    2012-01-01

    Background Aging is one of the most important and obvious phenomenon observed in our society. In the past years, there has been a growing concern in designing physical activity (PA) programmes for elderly people, because evidence suggests that such health promotion interventions may reduce the deleterious effects of the ageing process. Accordingly, a growing body of literature points to the importance of a sound approach to planning and evaluation in order to improve the quality of PA programmes. However, while numerous PA programmes have been designed for the elderly in recent years, their evaluation has been scarce. Quality management processes and tools provide a practical way for organisations to assess, identify and shed light on the areas requiring improvement. The Quality Self-assessment Tool for Exercise Programmes for Seniors (Q-STEPS) seems to provide a framework tailored to evaluate PA programmes for the elderly. Findings The primary purpose of this study is 1) to determine feasibility, acceptability and usability of the Q-STEPS. Secondary purposes of the study are: 2) to examine the quality of the PA programmes for elderly people developed by the Portuguese Local Administration over a three-year period of self-assessments in terms of: a) Enabler domains (Leadership, Policy and Strategy, People, Partnership and Resources, Processes); b) Result domains (Customer Results, People Results, Society Results and Key Performance Results); 3) to estimate the association between the use of Q-STEPS and some indicators relating to the elderly participants, during the three self-assessments, such as: attendance rates, physical fitness, health-related quality of life and the elderly’s perceived quality of the programme. The study will be conducted in PA programmes for elderly adults from mainland Portuguese municipalities over a three-year period. The project will adopt a participative quality improvement approach that features annual learning cycles of: 1) self

  9. Ethics in public health research: a research protocol to evaluate the effectiveness of public-private partnerships as a means to improve health and welfare systems worldwide.

    PubMed

    Barr, Donald A

    2007-01-01

    Public-private partnerships have become a common approach to health care problems worldwide. Many public-private partnerships were created during the late 1990s, but most were focused on specific diseases such as HIV/AIDS, tuberculosis, and malaria. Recently there has been enthusiasm for using public-private partnerships to improve the delivery of health and welfare services for a wider range of health problems, especially in developing countries. The success of public-private partnerships in this context appears to be mixed, and few data are available to evaluate their effectiveness. This analysis provides an overview of the history of health-related public-private partnerships during the past 20 years and describes a research protocol commissioned by the World Health Organization to evaluate the effectiveness of public-private partnerships in a research context.

  10. Protocol for the economic evaluation of a community-based intervention to improve growth among children under two in rural India (CARING trial)

    PubMed Central

    Sinha, Rajesh; Kumar Ojha, Amit; Sarangi, Soumendra; Nair, Nirmala; Tripathy, Prasanta; Sachdev, H S; Bhattacharyya, Sanghita; Gope, Rajkumar; Rath, Shibanand; Rath, Suchitra; Srivastava, Aradhana; Pulkki-Brännström, Anni-Maria; Costello, Anthony; Copas, Andrew; Saville, Naomi; Prost, Audrey; Haghparast-Bidgoli, Hassan

    2016-01-01

    Introduction Undernutrition affects ∼165 million children globally and contributes up to 45% of all child deaths. India has the highest proportion of global undernutrition-related morbidity and mortality. This protocol describes the planned economic evaluation of a community-based intervention to improve growth in children under 2 years of age in two rural districts of eastern India. The intervention is being evaluated through a cluster-randomised controlled trial (cRCT, the CARING trial). Methods and analysis A cost-effectiveness and cost–utility analysis nested within a cRCT will be conducted from a societal perspective, measuring programme, provider, household and societal costs. Programme costs will be collected prospectively from project accounts using a standardised tool. These will be supplemented with time sheets and key informant interviews to inform the allocation of joint costs. Direct and indirect costs incurred by providers will be collected using key informant interviews and time use surveys. Direct and indirect household costs will be collected prospectively, using time use and consumption surveys. Incremental cost-effectiveness ratios (ICERs) will be calculated for the primary outcome measure, that is, cases of stunting prevented, and other outcomes such as cases of wasting prevented, cases of infant mortality averted, life years saved and disability-adjusted life years (DALYs) averted. Sensitivity analyses will be conducted to assess the robustness of results. Ethics and dissemination There is a shortage of robust evidence regarding the cost-effectiveness of strategies to improve early child growth. As this economic evaluation is nested within a large scale, cRCT, it will contribute to understanding the fiscal space for investment in early child growth, and the relative (in)efficiency of prioritising resources to this intervention over others to prevent stunting in this and other comparable contexts. The protocol has all necessary ethical

  11. Improved production of isomaltulose by a newly isolated mutant of Serratia sp. cells immobilized in calcium alginate.

    PubMed

    Kim, Yonghwan; Koo, Bong-Seong; Lee, Hyeon-Cheol; Yoon, Youngdae

    2015-03-01

    Isomaltulose, also known as palatinose, is produced by sucrose isomerase and has been highlighted as a sugar substitute due to a number of advantageous properties. For the massive production of isomaltulose, high resistance to sucrose and stability of sucrose isomerase as well as sucrose conversion yields would be critical factors. We describe a series of screening procedures to isolate the mutant strain of Serratia sp. possessing enhanced isomaltulose production with improved stability. The new Serratia sp. isolated from a series of screening procedures allowed us to produce isomaltulose from 60% sucrose solution, with over 90% conversion yield. Moreover, when this strain was immobilized in calcium alginate beads and placed in a medium containing 60% sucrose, it showed over 70% sucrose conversion yields for 30 cycles of repeated-batch reactions. Thus, improved conversion activity and stability of the newly isolated Serratia sp. strain in the present study would be highly valuable for industries related to isomaltulose production.

  12. Anethole improves the in vitro development of isolated caprine secondary follicles.

    PubMed

    Sá, N A R; Araújo, V R; Correia, H H V; Ferreira, A C A; Guerreiro, D D; Sampaio, A M; Escobar, E; Santos, F W; Moura, A A; Lôbo, C H; Ceccatto, V M; Campello, C C; Rodrigues, A P R; Leal-Cardoso, J H; Figueiredo, J R

    2017-02-01

    The aim of this study was to investigate the effect of three concentrations of anethole (30, 300, and 2000 μg/mL) on survival, antrum formation, follicular diameter, and oocyte maturation in the caprine species. The study also evaluated the effects of anethole on transcripts of ICAM-1, CAV-1, TIMP-2, and PAI-1 genes and levels of reactive oxygen species (ROS) in isolated goat preantral ovarian follicles before and after in vitro culture for 18 days. Preantral follicles were isolated from goat ovaries and individually cultured in alpha minimum essential medium modified (α-MEM(+)), defined as the control treatment, α-MEM(+) supplemented with ascorbic acid at a concentration of 100 μg/mL (AA), or α-MEM(+) supplemented with three different concentrations of anethole (30, 300, 2000 μg/mL) for a period of 18 days. Treatments were named as α-MEM(+), AA, AN30, AN300, and AN2000, respectively. After culture, the follicles were opened, the cumulus oocytes complex (COCs) were removed and matured in vitro. The walls of the follicles were used for the quantitation of mRNA by quantitative real-time polymerase chain reaction. Finally, the medium collected at the end of culture was used for the measurements of ROS. After 18 days of culture, the AA treatment showed the percentage of intact follicles and follicular diameter significantly higher compared with the other treatments. However, daily growth rate, antrum formation, and also oocyte diameter were similar among the treatments. In addition, compared with AA, the rate of oocytes for in vitro maturation (diameter ≥ 110 μm) and the meiosis resumption rate were significantly higher in the treatments AN30 and AN2000, respectively. When assessing gene related to remodeling of the basement membrane, significant differences in mRNA levels for ICAM-1, CAV-1, TIMP-2, and PAI-1 were observed in comparison with Day 0, i.e., in the noncultured control. In addition, the ROS from Day 12, all treatments with the addition

  13. Effectiveness of a smartphone application for improving healthy lifestyles, a randomized clinical trial (EVIDENT II): study protocol

    PubMed Central

    2014-01-01

    Background New technologies could facilitate changes in lifestyle and improve public health. However, no large randomized, controlled studies providing scientific evidence of the benefits of their use have been made. The aims of this study are to develop and validate a smartphone application, and to evaluate the effect of adding this tool to a standardized intervention designed to improve adherence to the Mediterranean diet and to physical activity. An evaluation is also made of the effect of modifying habits upon vascular structure and function, and therefore on arterial aging. Methods/Design A randomized, double-blind, multicenter, parallel group clinical trial will be carried out. A total of 1215 subjects under 70 years of age from the EVIDENT trial will be included. Counseling common to both groups (control and intervention) will be provided on adaptation to the Mediterranean diet and on physical activity. The intervention group moreover will receive training on the use of a smartphone application designed to promote a healthy diet and increased physical activity, and will use the application for three months. The main study endpoints will be the changes in physical activity, assessed by accelerometer and the 7-day Physical Activity Recall (PAR) interview, and adaptation to the Mediterranean diet, as evaluated by an adherence questionnaire and a food frequency questionnaire (FFQ). Evaluation also will be made of vascular structure and function based on central arterial pressure, the radial augmentation index, pulse velocity, the cardio-ankle vascular index, and carotid intima-media thickness. Discussion Confirmation that the new technologies are useful for promoting healthier lifestyles and that their effects are beneficial in terms of arterial aging will have important clinical implications, and may contribute to generalize their application in favor of improved population health. Trial registration Clinical Trials.gov Identifier: NCT02016014 PMID:24628961

  14. Improving the efficiency of isolated microspore culture in six-row spring barley: II-exploring novel growth regulators to maximize embryogenesis and reduce albinism.

    PubMed

    Esteves, Patricio; Clermont, Isabelle; Marchand, Suzanne; Belzile, François

    2014-06-01

    Two alternative cytokinins, thidiazuron and meta-topoline, were tested in isolated microspore culture on recalcitrant barley genotypes (six-row, spring), and green plant regeneration was improved substantially. Doubled-haploid (DH) plants are coveted in plant breeding and in genetic studies, since they are rapidly obtained and perfectly homozygous. In barley, DHs are produced mainly via androgenesis, and isolated microspore culture (IMC) constitutes the method offering the greatest potential efficiency. However, IMC can often be challenging in some genotypes because of low yield of microspores, low regeneration and high incidence of albinism. Six-row spring-type barleys, the predominant type grown in Eastern Canada, are considered recalcitrant in this regard. Our general objective was to optimize an IMC protocol for DH production in six-row spring barley. In particular, we explored the use of alternative hormones in the induction medium (thidiazuron and dicamba), and in the regeneration medium (meta-topoline). This optimization was performed on two typical six-row spring (ACCA and Léger), a two-row spring (Gobernadora) and a two-row winter (Igri) barley cultivar. When 6-benzyl-aminopurine (BAP) was replaced by a combination of thidiazuron and dicamba in the induction medium, a 5.1-fold increase (P < 0.01) in the production of green plants resulted. This increase was mainly achieved by a reduction of albinism. Moreover, a 2.9-fold increase (P < 0.01) in embryo differentiation into green plants was obtained using meta-topoline instead of BAP in the regeneration medium. Together, these innovations allowed us to achieve a substantial improvement in the efficiency of IMC in this recalcitrant type of barley. These results were later successfully validated using sets of F1s from a six-row spring barley breeding program.

  15. Study protocol for a randomized controlled trial to assess the feasibility of an open label intervention to improve hydroxyurea adherence in youth with sickle cell disease

    PubMed Central

    Smaldone, Arlene; Findley, Sally; Bakken, Suzanne; Matiz, L. Adriana; Rosenthal, Susan L.; Jia, Haomiao; Matos, Sergio; Manwani, Deepa; Green, Nancy S.

    2016-01-01

    Background Community health workers (CHW) are increasingly recognized as a strategy to improve health outcomes for the underserved with chronic diseases but has not been formally explored in adolescents with sickle cell disease (SCD). SCD primarily affects African American, Hispanic and other traditionally underserved populations. Hydroxyurea (HU), an oral, once-daily medication, is the only approved therapeutic drug for sickle cell disease and markedly reduces symptoms, morbidity and mortality and improves quality of life largely by increasing hemoglobin F blood levels. This paper presents the rationale, study design and protocol for an open label randomized controlled trial to improve parent-youth partnerships in self-management and medication adherence to HU in adolescents with SCD. Methods/Design A CHW intervention augmented by text messaging was designed for adolescents with SCD ages 10–18 years and their parents to improve daily HU adherence. Thirty adolescent parent dyads will be randomized with 2:1 intervention group allocation. Intervention dyads will establish a relationship with a culturally aligned CHW to identify barriers to HU use, identify cues to build a habit, and develop a dyad partnership to improve daily HU adherence and achieve their individualized “personal best” hemoglobin F target. Intervention feasibility, acceptability and efficacy will be assessed via a 2-site trial. Outcomes of interest are HU adherence, dyad self-management communication, quality of life, and resource use. Discussion Despite known benefits, poor HU adherence is common. If feasible and acceptable, the proposed intervention may improve health of underserved adolescents with SCD by enhancing long-term HU adherence. PMID:27327779

  16. Improved online δ18O measurements of nitrogen- and sulfur-bearing organic materials and a proposed analytical protocol

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Qi, H.; Coplen, T.B.; Wassenaar, L.I.

    2011-01-01

    It is well known that N2 in the ion source of a mass spectrometer interferes with the CO background during the δ18O measurement of carbon monoxide. A similar problem arises with the high-temperature conversion (HTC) analysis of nitrogenous O-bearing samples (e.g. nitrates and keratins) to CO for δ18O measurement, where the sample introduces a significant N2 peak before the CO peak, making determination of accurate oxygen isotope ratios difficult. Although using a gas chromatography (GC) column longer than that commonly provided by manufacturers (0.6 m) can improve the efficiency of separation of CO and N2 and using a valve to divert nitrogen and prevent it from entering the ion source of a mass spectrometer improved measurement results, biased δ18O values could still be obtained. A careful evaluation of the performance of the GC separation column was carried out. With optimal GC columns, the δ18O reproducibility of human hair keratins and other keratin materials was better than ±0.15 ‰ (n = 5; for the internal analytical reproducibility), and better than ±0.10 ‰ (n = 4; for the external analytical reproducibility).

  17. Improved online δ18O measurements of nitrogen- and sulfur-bearing organic materials and a proposed analytical protocol.

    PubMed

    Qi, Haiping; Coplen, Tyler B; Wassenaar, Leonard I

    2011-07-30

    It is well known that N(2) in the ion source of a mass spectrometer interferes with the CO background during the δ(18)O measurement of carbon monoxide. A similar problem arises with the high-temperature conversion (HTC) analysis of nitrogenous O-bearing samples (e.g. nitrates and keratins) to CO for δ(18)O measurement, where the sample introduces a significant N(2) peak before the CO peak, making determination of accurate oxygen isotope ratios difficult. Although using a gas chromatography (GC) column longer than that commonly provided by manufacturers (0.6 m) can improve the efficiency of separation of CO and N(2) and using a valve to divert nitrogen and prevent it from entering the ion source of a mass spectrometer improved measurement results, biased δ(18)O values could still be obtained. A careful evaluation of the performance of the GC separation column was carried out. With optimal GC columns, the δ(18)O reproducibility of human hair keratins and other keratin materials was better than ± 0.15 ‰ (n=5; for the internal analytical reproducibility), and better than ± 0.10 ‰ (n=4; for the external analytical reproducibility).

  18. A protocol to generate phthaloyl peroxide in flow for the hydroxylation of arenes.

    PubMed

    Eliasen, Anders M; Thedford, Randal P; Claussen, Karin R; Yuan, Changxia; Siegel, Dionicio

    2014-07-18

    A flow protocol for the generation of phthaloyl peroxide has been developed. This process directly yields phthaloyl peroxide in high purity (>95%) and can be used to bypass the need to isolate and recrystallize phthaloyl peroxide, improving upon earlier batch procedures. The flow protocol for the formation of phthaloyl peroxide can be combined with arene hydroxylation reactions and provides a method for the consumption of peroxide as it is generated to minimize the accumulation of large quantities of peroxide.

  19. Improving our understanding of the in vivo modelling of psychotic disorders: A protocol for a systematic review and meta-analysis.

    PubMed

    Bahor, Zsanett; Nunes-Fonseca, Cristina; Thomson, Lindsay D G; Sena, Emily S; Macleod, Malcolm R

    2016-12-01

    Psychosis represents a set of symptoms against which current available treatments are not universally effective and are often accompanied by adverse side effects. Clinical management could potentially be improved with a greater understanding of the underlying biology and subsequently with the introduction of novel treatments. Since many clinical drug candidates are identified through in vivo modelling, a deeper understanding of the pre-clinical field, might help us understand why translation of results from animal models to inform mental health clinical practice has so far been weak. We set out to give a shallow, but broad unbiased overview of experiments looking at the in vivo modelling of psychotic disorders using a systematic review and meta-analysis. This protocol describes the exact methodology we propose to follow in order to quantitatively review both studies characterizing a model and those experiments that investigate the effects of novel therapeutic options. We are interested in assessing the prevalence of the reporting of measures to reduce risk of bias, and the internal and external validity of the animal models and outcome measures used to validate these models. This generation of strong empirical evidence has the potential to identify areas for improvement, make suggestions for future research avenues, and ultimately inform what we think we know to improve the current attrition rate between bench and bedside in psychosis research. A review like this will also support the reduction of animal numbers used in research and the refinement of experiments to maximize their value in informing the field.

  20. CONNECT for quality: protocol of a cluster randomized controlled trial to improve fall prevention in nursing homes

    PubMed Central

    2012-01-01

    Background Quality improvement (QI) programs focused on mastery of content by individual staff members are the current standard to improve resident outcomes in nursing homes. However, complexity science suggests that learning is a social process that occurs within the context of relationships and interactions among individuals. Thus, QI programs will not result in optimal changes in staff behavior unless the context for social learning is present. Accordingly, we developed CONNECT, an intervention to foster systematic use of management practices, which we propose will enhance effectiveness of a nursing home Falls QI program by strengthening the staff-to-staff interactions necessary for clinical problem-solving about complex problems such as falls. The study aims are to compare the impact of the CONNECT intervention, plus a falls reduction QI intervention (CONNECT + FALLS), to the falls reduction QI intervention alone (FALLS), on fall-related process measures, fall rates, and staff interaction measures. Methods/design Sixteen nursing homes will be randomized to one of two study arms, CONNECT + FALLS or FALLS alone. Subjects (staff and residents) are clustered within nursing homes because the intervention addresses social processes and thus must be delivered within the social context, rather than to individuals. Nursing homes randomized to CONNECT + FALLS will receive three months of CONNECT first, followed by three months of FALLS. Nursing homes randomized to FALLS alone receive three months of FALLs QI and are offered CONNECT after data collection is completed. Complexity science measures, which reflect staff perceptions of communication, safety climate, and care quality, will be collected from staff at baseline, three months after, and six months after baseline to evaluate immediate and sustained impacts. FALLS measures including quality indicators (process measures) and fall rates will be collected for the six months prior to baseline and the six months after the

  1. Improving the management of multimorbidity in general practice: protocol of a cluster randomised controlled trial (The 3D Study)

    PubMed Central

    Chaplin, Katherine; Bower, Peter; Brookes, Sara; Fitzpatrick, Bridie; Guthrie, Bruce; Shaw, Alison; Mercer, Stewart; Rafi, Imran; Thorn, Joanna

    2016-01-01

    Introduction An increasing number of people are living with multimorbidity. The evidence base for how best to manage these patients is weak. Current clinical guidelines generally focus on single conditions, which may not reflect the needs of patients with multimorbidity. The aim of the 3D study is to develop, implement and evaluate an intervention to improve the management of patients with multimorbidity in general practice. Methods and analysis This is a pragmatic two-arm cluster randomised controlled trial. 32 general practices around Bristol, Greater Manchester and Glasgow will be randomised to receive either the ‘3D intervention’ or usual care. 3D is a complex intervention including components affecting practice organisation, the conduct of patient reviews, integration with secondary care and measures to promote change in practice organisation. Changes include improving continuity of care and replacing reviews of each disease with patient-centred reviews with a focus on patients' quality of life, mental health and polypharmacy. We aim to recruit 1383 patients who have 3 or more chronic conditions. This provides 90% power at 5% significance level to detect an effect size of 0.27 SDs in the primary outcome, which is health-related quality of life at 15 months using the EQ-5D-5L. Secondary outcome measures assess patient centredness, illness burden and treatment burden. The primary analysis will be a multilevel regression model adjusted for baseline, stratification/minimisation, clustering and important co-variables. Nested process evaluation will assess implementation, mechanisms of effectiveness and interaction of the intervention with local context. Economic analysis of cost-consequences and cost-effectiveness will be based on quality-adjusted life years. Ethics and dissemination This study has approval from South-West (Frenchay) National Health Service (NHS) Research Ethics Committee (14/SW/0011). Findings will be disseminated via final report, peer

  2. Step-by-step protocol to perfuse and dissect the mouse parotid gland and isolation of high-quality RNA from murine and human parotid tissue.

    PubMed

    Watermann, Christoph; Valerius, Klaus Peter; Wagner, Steffen; Wittekindt, Claus; Klussmann, Jens Peter; Baumgart-Vogt, Eveline; Karnati, Srikanth

    2016-04-01

    Macroscopic identification and surgical removal of the mouse parotid gland is demanding because of its anatomic location and size. Moreover, the mouse parotid gland contains high concentrations of RNases, making it difficult to isolate high-quality RNA. So far, appropriate methods for optimal perfusion-fixation and dissection of mouse parotid glands, as well as the isolation of high quality RNA from this tissue, are not available. Here we present a simple, optimized, step-by-step surgical method to perfuse and isolate murine parotid glands. We also compared two common RNA extraction methods (RNeasy Mini Kit versus TRIzol) for their yields of high-quality, intact RNA from human and murine parotid gland tissues that were either snap-frozen or immersed in RNAlater stabilization solution. Mouse parotid tissue that was perfused and immersed in RNAlater and human samples immersed in RNAlater exhibited the best RNA quality, independent of the isolation method.

  3. Improving outcomes of preschool language delay in the community: protocol for the Language for Learning randomised controlled trial

    PubMed Central

    2012-01-01

    Background Early language delay is a high-prevalence condition of concern to parents and professionals. It may result in lifelong deficits not only in language function, but also in social, emotional/behavioural, academic and economic well-being. Such delays can lead to considerable costs to the individual, the family and to society more widely. The Language for Learning trial tests a population-based intervention in 4 year olds with measured language delay, to determine (1) if it improves language and associated outcomes at ages 5 and 6 years and (2) its cost-effectiveness for families and the health care system. Methods/Design A large-scale randomised trial of a year-long intervention targeting preschoolers with language delay, nested within a well-documented, prospective, population-based cohort of 1464 children in Melbourne, Australia. All children received a 1.25-1.5 hour formal language assessment at their 4th birthday. The 200 children with expressive and/or receptive language scores more than 1.25 standard deviations below the mean were randomised into intervention or ‘usual care’ control arms. The 20-session intervention program comprises 18 one-hour home-based therapeutic sessions in three 6-week blocks, an outcome assessment, and a final feed-back/forward planning session. The therapy utilises a ‘step up-step down’ therapeutic approach depending on the child’s language profile, severity and progress, with standardised, manualised activities covering the four language development domains of: vocabulary and grammar; narrative skills; comprehension monitoring; and phonological awareness/pre-literacy skills. Blinded follow-up assessments at ages 5 and 6 years measure the primary outcome of receptive and expressive language, and secondary outcomes of vocabulary, narrative, and phonological skills. Discussion A key strength of this robust study is the implementation of a therapeutic framework that provides a standardised yet tailored approach for

  4. Improvement of device isolation using field implantation for GaN MOSFETs

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Jiang, Ying; Wang, Qingpeng; Zhang, Fuzhe; Li, Liuan; Shinkai, Satoko; Wang, Dejun; Ao, Jin-Ping

    2016-03-01

    Gallium nitride (GaN) metal-oxide-semiconductor field-effect transistors (MOSFETs) with boron field implantation isolation and mesa isolation were fabricated and characterized. The process of boron field implantation was altered and subsequently conducted after performing high-temperature ohmic annealing and gate oxide thermal treatment. Implanted regions with high resistivity were achieved. The circular MOSFET fabricated in the implanted region showed an extremely low current of 6.5 × 10-12 A under a gate voltage value up to 10 V, thus demonstrating that the parasitic MOSFET in the isolation region was eliminated by boron field implantation. The off-state drain current of the rectangular MOSFET with boron field implantation was 5.5 × 10-11 A, which was only one order of magnitude higher than the 6.6 × 10-12 A of the circular device. By contrast, the rectangular MOSFET with mesa isolation presented an off-state drain current of 3.2 × 10-9 A. The field isolation for GaN MOSFETs was achieved by using boron field implantation. The implantation did not reduce the field-effect mobility. The isolation structure of both mesa and implantation did not influence the subthreshold swing, whereas the isolation structure of only the implantation increased the subthreshold swing. The breakdown voltage of the implanted region with 5 μm spacing was up to 901.5 V.

  5. Improvements in immunoprecipitation of specific messenger RNA. Isolation of highly purified conalbumin mRNA in high yield.

    PubMed

    Payvar, F; Schimke, R T

    1979-11-01

    We have described previously procedures for the isolation of specific mRNA employing immunoprecipitation of polysomes. In spite of our success with ovalbumin mRNA in the chicken oviduct, we have had considerable difficulties in applying these same published techniques to the immunopurification of conalbumin mRNA, despite the fact that the chicken oviduct synthesizes up to 10% of protein as conalbumin. Here we describe a number of modifications and refinements which have proved essential in obtaining intact conalbumin mRNA in high purity and high yields. These refinements include: (a) improved purification of conalbumin in order to remove contaminating proteins that result in impure antibodies; (b) improved isolation of specific conalbumin antibody in high yields; (c) improved methods for reducing contamination by non-specific polysomes; (d) improved techniques for isolation of RNA from immunoprecipitates resulting in less degradation and higher recovery of conalbumin mRNA; (E) improved techniques for efficient translation of conalbumin mRNA involving treatment of the RNA with methylmercury prior to translation. We conclude that problems involved in the immunoprecipitation of different mRNAs may differ, and that various refinements in techniques may be required for obtaining highly purified preparations of intact mRNA in high yields.

  6. Improving Post-Hospitalization Transition Outcomes through Accessible Health Information Technology and Caregiver Support: Protocol for a Randomized Controlled Trial

    PubMed Central

    Piette, John D; Striplin, Dana; Marinec, Nicolle; Chen, Jenny; Gregory, Lynn A; Sumerlin, Denise L; DeSantis, Angela M; Gibson, Carolyn; Crause, Ingrid; Rouse, Marylena; Aikens, James E

    2015-01-01

    Objective The goal of this trial is to evaluate a novel intervention designed to improve post-hospitalization support for older adults with chronic conditions via: (a) direct tailored communication to patients using regular automated calls post discharge, (b) support for informal caregivers outside of the patient’s household via structured automated feedback about the patient’s status plus advice about how caregivers can help, and (c) support for care management including a web-based disease management tool and alerts about potential problems. Methods 846 older adults with common chronic conditions are being identified upon hospital admission. Patients are asked to identify a “CarePartner” (CP) living outside their household, i.e., an adult child or other social network member willing to play an active role in their post-discharge transition support. Patient-CP pairs are randomized to the intervention or usual care. Intervention patients receive automated assessment and behavior change calls, and their CPs receives structured feedback and advice via email and automated calls following each assessment. Clinical teams have access to assessment results via the web and receive automated reports about urgent health problems. Patients complete surveys at baseline, 30 days, and 90 days post discharge; utilization data is obtained from hospital records. CPs, other caregivers, and clinicians are interviewed to evaluate intervention effects on processes of self-care support, caregiver stress and communication, and the intervention’s potential for broader implementation. The primary outcome is 30-day readmission rates; other outcomes measured at 30 days and 90 days include functional status, self-care behaviors, and mortality risk. Conclusion This trial uses accessible health technologies and coordinated communication among informal caregivers and clinicians to fill the growing gap between what discharged patients need and available resources. A unique feature of

  7. Targeted rehabilitation to improve outcome after total knee replacement (TRIO): study protocol for a randomised controlled trial

    PubMed Central

    2014-01-01

    Background Approximately 20% of patients are not satisfied with the outcome of total knee replacement, great volumes of which are carried out yearly. Physiotherapy is often provided by the NHS to address dysfunction following knee replacement; however the efficacy of this is unknown. Although clinically it is accepted that therapy is useful, provision of physiotherapy to all patients post-operatively does not enhance outcomes at one year. No study has previously assessed the effect of targeting therapy to individuals struggling to recover in the early post-operative phase. The aim of the TRIO study is to determine whether stratifying care by targeting physiotherapy to those individuals performing poorly following knee replacement is effective in improving the one year outcomes. We are also investigating whether the structure of the physiotherapy provision itself influences outcomes. Methods/Design The study is a multi-centre prospective randomised controlled trial (RCT) of patients undergoing primary total knee replacement, with treatment targeted at those deemed most susceptible to gain from it. Use of the national PROMS programme for pre-operative data collection allows us to screen all patients at initial post-operative clinical review, and recruit only those deemed to be recovering slowly. We aim to recruit 440 patients through various NHS orthopaedic centres who will undergo six weeks of physiotherapy. The intervention will be either ‘intensive’ involving both hospital and home-based functional exercise rehabilitation, or ‘standard of care’ consisting of home exercises. Patients will be randomised to either group using a web-based system. Both groups will receive pre and post-intervention physiotherapy review. Patients will be followed-up to one year post-operation. The primary outcome measure is the Oxford Knee Score. Secondary outcomes are patient satisfaction, functional ability, pain scores and cost-effectiveness. Trial registration Current

  8. Cluster randomised feasibility trial to improve the Control of Hypertension In Rural India (CHIRI): a study protocol

    PubMed Central

    Riddell, Michaela A; Joshi, Rohina; Oldenburg, Brian; Chow, Clara; Thankappan, K R; Mahal, Ajay; Thomas, Nihal; Srikanth, Velandai K; Evans, Roger G; Kalyanram, Kartik; Kartik, Kamakshi; Maulik, Pallab K; Arabshahi, Simin; Varma, R P; Guggilla, Rama K; Suresh, Oduru; Mini, G K; D'Esposito, Fabrizio; Sathish, Thirunavukkarasu; Alim, Mohammed

    2016-01-01

    Introduction Hypertension is emerging in rural populations of India. Barriers to diagnosis and treatment of hypertension may differ regionally according to economic development. Our main objectives are to estimate the prevalence, awareness, treatment and control of hypertension in 3 diverse regions of rural India; identify barriers to diagnosis and treatment in each setting and evaluate the feasibility of a community-based intervention to improve control of hypertension. Methods and analysis This study includes 4 main activities: (1) assessment of risk factors, quality of life, socioeconomic position and barriers to changes in lifestyle behaviours in ∼14 500 participants; (2) focus group discussions with individuals with hypertension and indepth interviews with healthcare providers, to identify barriers to control of hypertension; (3) use of a medicines-availability survey to determine the availability, affordability and accessibility of medicines and (4) trial of an intervention provided by Accredited Social Health Activists (ASHAs), comprising group-based education and support for individuals with hypertension to self-manage blood pressure. Wards/villages/hamlets of a larger Mandal are identified as the primary sampling unit (PSU). PSUs are then randomly selected for inclusion in the cross-sectional survey, with further randomisation to intervention or control. Changes in knowledge of hypertension and risk factors, and clinical and anthropometric measures, are assessed. Evaluation of the intervention by participants provides insight into perceptions of education and support of self-management delivered by the ASHAs. Ethics and dissemination Approval for the overall study was obtained from the Health Ministry's Screening Committee, Ministry of Health and Family Welfare (India), institutional review boards at each site and Monash University. In addition to publication in peer-reviewed articles, results will be shared with federal, state and local government

  9. Tephrochronology of last termination sequences in Europe: a protocol for improved analytical precision and robust correlation procedures (a joint SCOTAV-INTIMATE proposal)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Turney, Chris S. M.; Lowe, J. John; Davies, Siwan M.; Hall, Valerie; Lowe, David J.; Wastegård, Stefan; Hoek, Wim Z.; Alloway, Brent

    2004-02-01

    The precise sequence of events during the Last Termination (18 000-9000 ka 14C yr BP), and the extent to which major environmental changes were synchronous, are difficult to establish using the radiocarbon method alone because of serious distortions of the radiocarbon time-scale, as well as the influences of site-specific errors that can affect the materials dated. Attention has therefore turned to other methods that can provide independent tests of the chronology and correlation of events during the Last Termination. With emphasis on European sequences, we summarise here the potential of tephrostratigraphy and tephrochronology to fulfil this role. Recent advances in the detection and analysis of hidden tephra layers (cryptotephra) indicate that some tephras of Last Termination age are much more widespread in Europe than appreciated hitherto, and a number of new tephra deposits have also been identified. There is much potential for developing an integrated tephrochronological framework for Europe, which can help to underpin the overall chronology of events during the Last Termination. For that potential to be realised, however, there needs to be a more systematic and robust analysis of tephra layers than has been the practice in the past. We propose a protocol for improving analytical and reporting procedures, as well as the establishment of a centralised data base of the results, which will provide an important geochronological tool to support a diverse range of stratigraphical studies, including opportunities to reassess volcanic hazards. Although aimed primarily at Europe, the protocol proposed here is of equal relevance to other regions and periods of interest. Copyright

  10. Significant improvements in cognitive performance post-transcranial, red/near-infrared light-emitting diode treatments in chronic, mild traumatic brain injury: open-protocol study.

    PubMed

    Naeser, Margaret A; Zafonte, Ross; Krengel, Maxine H; Martin, Paula I; Frazier, Judith; Hamblin, Michael R; Knight, Jeffrey A; Meehan, William P; Baker, Errol H

    2014-06-01

    This pilot, open-protocol study examined whether scalp application of red and near-infrared (NIR) light-emitting diodes (LED) could improve cognition in patients with chronic, mild traumatic brain injury (mTBI). Application of red/NIR light improves mitochondrial function (especially in hypoxic/compromised cells) promoting increased adenosine triphosphate (ATP) important for cellular metabolism. Nitric oxide is released locally, increasing regional cerebral blood flow. LED therapy is noninvasive, painless, and non-thermal (cleared by the United States Food and Drug Administration [FDA], an insignificant risk device). Eleven chronic, mTBI participants (26-62 years of age, 6 males) with nonpenetrating brain injury and persistent cognitive dysfunction were treated for 18 outpatient sessions (Monday, Wednesday, Friday, for 6 weeks), starting at 10 months to 8 years post- mTBI (motor vehicle accident [MVA] or sports-related; and one participant, improvised explosive device [IED] blast injury). Four had a history of multiple concussions. Each LED cluster head (5.35 cm diameter, 500 mW, 22.2 mW/cm(2)) was applied for 10 min to each of 11 scalp placements (13 J/cm(2)). LEDs were placed on the midline from front-to-back hairline; and bilaterally on frontal, parietal, and temporal areas. Neuropsychological testing was performed pre-LED, and at 1 week, and 1 and 2 months after the 18th treatment. A significant linear trend was observed for the effect of LED treatment over time for the Stroop test for Executive Function, Trial 3 inhibition (p=0.004); Stroop, Trial 4 inhibition switching (p=0.003); California Verbal Learning Test (CVLT)-II, Total Trials 1-5 (p=0.003); and CVLT-II, Long Delay Free Recall (p=0.006). Participants reported improved sleep, and fewer post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) symptoms, if present. Participants and family reported better ability to perform social, interpersonal, and occupational functions. These open-protocol data suggest that placebo

  11. Supporting the improvement and management of prescribing for urinary tract infections (SIMPle): protocol for a cluster randomized trial

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    Background The overuse of antimicrobials is recognized as the main selective pressure driving the emergence and spread of antimicrobial resistance in human bacterial pathogens. Urinary tract infections (UTIs) are among the most common infections presented in primary care and empirical antimicrobial treatment is currently recommended. Previous research has identified that a substantial proportion of Irish general practitioners (GPs) prescribe antimicrobials for UTIs that are not in accordance with the Guidelines for Antimicrobial Prescribing in Primary Care in Ireland. The aim of this trial is to design, implement and evaluate the effectiveness of a complex intervention on GP antimicrobial prescribing and adult (18 years of age and over) patients’ antimicrobial consumption when presenting with a suspected UTI. Methods/design The Supporting the Improvement and Management of Prescribing for urinary tract infections (SIMPle) study is a three-armed intervention with practice-level randomization. Adult patients presenting with suspected UTIs in primary care will be included in the study. The intervention integrates components for both GPs and patients. For GPs the intervention includes interactive workshops, audit and feedback reports and automated electronic prompts summarizing recommended first-line antimicrobial treatment and, for one intervention arm, a recommendation to consider delayed antimicrobial treatment. For patients, multimedia applications and information leaflets are included. Thirty practices will be recruited to the study; laboratory data indicate that 2,038 patients will be prescribed an antimicrobial in the study. The primary outcome is a change in prescribing of first-line antimicrobials for UTIs in accordance with the Guidelines for Antimicrobial Prescribing in Primary Care in Ireland. The study will take place over 15 months with a six-month intervention period. Data will be collected through a remote electronic anonymized data-extraction system

  12. The implementation of a translational study involving a primary care based behavioral program to improve blood pressure control: The HTN-IMPROVE study protocol (01295)

    PubMed Central

    2010-01-01

    Background Despite the impact of hypertension and widely accepted target values for blood pressure (BP), interventions to improve BP control have had limited success. Objectives We describe the design of a 'translational' study that examines the implementation, impact, sustainability, and cost of an evidence-based nurse-delivered tailored behavioral self-management intervention to improve BP control as it moves from a research context to healthcare delivery. The study addresses four specific aims: assess the implementation of an evidence-based behavioral self-management intervention to improve BP levels; evaluate the clinical impact of the intervention as it is implemented; assess organizational factors associated with the sustainability of the intervention; and assess the cost of implementing and sustaining the intervention. Methods The project involves three geographically diverse VA intervention facilities and nine control sites. We first conduct an evaluation of barriers and facilitators for implementing the intervention at intervention sites. We examine the impact of the intervention by comparing 12-month pre/post changes in BP control between patients in intervention sites versus patients in the matched control sites. Next, we examine the sustainability of the intervention and organizational factors facilitating or hindering the sustained implementation. Finally, we examine the costs of intervention implementation. Key outcomes are acceptability and costs of the program, as well as changes in BP. Outcomes will be assessed using mixed methods (e.g., qualitative analyses--pattern matching; quantitative methods--linear mixed models). Discussion The study results will provide information about the challenges and costs to implement and sustain the intervention, and what clinical impact can be expected. PMID:20637095

  13. An improved representation of geographically isolated wetlands in a watershed-scale hydrologic model

    EPA Science Inventory

    Geographically isolated wetlands (GIWs), defined as wetlands surrounded by uplands, provide an array of ecosystem goods and services. Within the United States, federal regulatory protections for GIWs are contingent, in part, on the quantification of their singular or aggregate ef...

  14. Development of simulation-based learning program for improving adherence to time-out protocol on high-risk invasive procedures outside of operating room.

    PubMed

    Jeong, Eun Ju; Chung, Hyun Soo; Choi, Jeong Yun; Kim, In Sook; Hong, Seong Hee; Yoo, Kyung Sook; Kim, Mi Kyoung; Won, Mi Yeol; Eum, So Yeon; Cho, Young Soon

    2017-02-07

    The aim of this study was to develop a simulation-based time-out learning program targeted to nurses participating in high-risk invasive procedures and to figure out the effects of application of the new program on acceptance of nurses. This study was performed using a simulation-based learning predesign and postdesign to figure out the effects of implementation of this program. It was targeted to 48 registered nurses working in the general ward and the emergency department in a tertiary teaching hospital. Difference between acceptance and performance rates has been figured out by using mean, standard deviation, and Wilcoxon-signed rank test. The perception survey and score sheet have been validated through content validation index, and the reliability of evaluator has been verified by using intraclass correlation coefficient. Results showed high level of acceptance of high-risk invasive procedure (P<.01). Further, improvement was consistent regardless of clinical experience, workplace, or experience in simulation-based learning. The face validity of the program showed over 4.0 out of 5.0. This simulation-based learning program was effective in improving the recognition of time-out protocol and has given the participants the opportunity to become proactive in cases of high-risk invasive procedures performed outside of operating room.

  15. An inexpensive, simple protocol for DNA isolation from blood for high-throughput genotyping by polymerase chain reaction or restriction endonuclease digestion.

    PubMed

    Bailes, S M; Devers, J J; Kirby, J D; Rhoads, D D

    2007-01-01

    We describe simple, inexpensive, and reliable methods for isolating DNA from avian blood, semen, or feather pulp. The procedures are readily applicable to high-throughput 96-well plate isolation for genotype analysis of chicken DNA based on restriction endonuclease digestion or PCR. Isolation cost is primarily the cost of a deep-well assay block and a few pipet tips; current price is less than 0.10 dollar per sample, providing a significant cost advantage over commercial kits. The procedure employs inexpensive, nonhazardous reagents and yields intact, double-stranded DNA from as little as 2 to 10 microL of avian blood, suitable for RFLP analysis or hundreds of PCR amplifications. We compared our method to published procedures for alkaline extraction from feather pulp and found our method to be more reliable with the advantage of isolating intact DNA sequences that can be easily quantified. With minor modifications, the method can isolate DNA for PCR genotyping from mammalian whole blood.

  16. Does metformin improve vascular heath in children with type 1 diabetes? Protocol for a one year, double blind, randomised, placebo controlled trial

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    Background Cardiovascular disease is the leading cause of mortality in Type 1 diabetes (T1D). Vascular dysfunction is an early and critical event in the development of cardiovascular disease. Children with T1D have vascular dysfunction therefore early interventions to improve vascular health are essential to reduce cardiovascular mortality in T1D. Metformin is an insulin sensitising agent which is known to improve vascular health outcomes in type 2 diabetes (T2D) and other individuals with insulin resistance. It has been used safely in children and adolescents with T2D for over 10 years. This study aims to assess the effect of metformin on vascular health in children with T1D. Methods/Design This study is a 12 month, double blind, randomised, placebo controlled trial to determine the effect of metformin on vascular health in children (age 8–18) with T1D. The sample size is 76 with 38 children in the metformin group and 38 children in the placebo group. Vascular health and biochemical markers will be measured at baseline, 3, 6 and 12 months. Vascular function will be measured using flow mediated dilatation and glyceryl trinitrate mediated dilatation of the brachial artery and vascular structure will be measured with carotid and aortic intima media thickness, using standardised protocols. Discussion This study will be the first to investigate the effect of metformin on vascular health in children with T1D. It will provide important information on a potential intervention to improve cardiovascular morbidity and mortality in this population at high risk from cardiovascular disease. Trial registration Australia New Zealand Clinical Trials Registry ACTRN12611000148976 PMID:23865839

  17. Improving physical functional and quality of life in older adults with multiple sclerosis via a DVD-delivered exercise intervention: a study protocol

    PubMed Central

    Wójcicki, Thomas R; Roberts, Sarah A; Learmonth, Yvonne C; Hubbard, Elizabeth A; Kinnett-Hopkins, Dominque; Motl, Robert W; McAuley, Edward

    2014-01-01

    Introduction There is a need to identify innovative, low-cost and broad-reaching strategies for promoting exercise and improving physical function in older adults with multiple sclerosis (MS). Methods and analysis This randomised controlled pilot trial will test the efficacy of a 6-month, DVD-delivered exercise intervention to improve functional performance and quality of life in older adults with MS. Participants will be randomised either into a DVD-delivered exercise condition or an attentional control condition. This novel approach to programme delivery provides participants with detailed exercise instructions which are presented in a progressive manner and includes a variety of modifications to better meet varying levels of physical abilities. The targeted exercises focus on three critical elements of functional fitness: flexibility, strength and balance. It is hypothesised that participants who are randomised to the exercise DVD condition will demonstrate improvements in physical function compared with participants assigned to the attentional control condition. Data analysis will include a 2 (condition)×2 (time) mixed factor analysis of variance (ANOVA) that follows intent-to-treat principles, as well as an examination of effect sizes. Participants will take part in qualitative interviews about perspectives on physical activity and programme participation. Ethics and dissemination The study protocol was approved by a university institutional review board and registered with a federal database. Participants will be asked to read and sign a detailed informed consent document and will be required to provide a physician's approval to participate in the study. The exercise DVDs include an overview of safety-related concerns and recommendations relative to exercise participation, as well as detailed instructions highlighting the proper execution of each exercise presented on screen. Following completion of this trial, data will be immediately analysed and results

  18. Improving the network management of integrated primary mental healthcare for older people in a rural Australian region: protocol for a mixed methods case study

    PubMed Central

    Fuller, Jeffrey; Oster, Candice; Dawson, Suzanne; O'Kane, Deb; Lawn, Sharon; Henderson, Julie; Gerace, Adam; Reed, Richard; Nosworthy, Ann; Galley, Philip; McPhail, Ruth; Cochrane, Eimear Muir

    2014-01-01

    Introduction An integrated approach to the mental healthcare of older people is advocated across health, aged care and social care sectors. It is not clear, however, how the management of integrated servicing should occur, although interorganisational relations theory suggests a reflective network approach using evaluation feedback. This research will test a network management approach to help regional primary healthcare organisations improve mental health service integration. Methods and analysis This mixed methods case study in rural South Australia will test facilitated reflection within a network of health and social care services to determine if this leads to improved integration. Engagement of services will occur through a governance group and a series of three 1-day service stakeholder workshops. Facilitated reflection and evaluation feedback will use information from a review of health sector and local operational policies, a network survey about current service links, gaps and enablers and interviews with older people and their carers about their help seeking journeys. Quantitative and qualitative analysis will describe the policy enablers and explore the current and ideal links between services. The facilitated reflection will be developed to maximise engagement of senior management in the governance group and the service staff at the operational level in the workshops. Benefit will be assessed through indicators of improved service coordination, collective ownership of service problems, strengthened partnerships, agreed local protocols and the use of feedback for accountability. Ethics, benefits and dissemination Ethics approval will deal with the sensitivities of organisational network research where data anonymity is not preserved. The benefit will be the tested utility of a facilitated reflective process for a network of health and social care services to manage linked primary mental healthcare for older people in a rural region. Dissemination will

  19. A Comparative experimental study of media access protocols for wireless radio networks

    SciTech Connect

    Barrett, C. L.; Drozda, M.; Marathe, M. V.

    2001-05-24

    ) Performance analysis of protocols at a given level in the protocol stack need to be studied not locally in isolation but as a part of the complete protocol stack. The results suggest that in order to improve the performance of a communication network, it will be important to study the entire protocol stuck as a single algorithmic construct; optimizing individual layers in the 7 layer OSI stack will not yield performance improvements beyond a point.

  20. Can a short internet training program improve social isolation and self-esteem in older adults with psychiatric conditions?

    PubMed

    Loi, Samantha M; Hodson, Samuel; Huppert, David; Swan, Jodie; Mazur, Angela; Lautenschlager, Nicola T

    2016-10-01

    The purpose of this study was to investigate whether an educational training course on using the internet and touchscreen technology (TT) would decrease social isolation and improve self-esteem in residents living in a low-level residential facility. Twelve sessions over six weeks with two facilitators were provided to five participants with a variety of psychiatric disorders. Measures were completed before and after the 12 sessions. There were no statistically significant improvements or worsening in social isolation (mean score 6.2, SD 3.35) or self-esteem (mean score 18.2, SD 3.56) post the training sessions for the residents. Qualitative feedback suggested that the residents enjoyed this experience and learnt new skills. Further study is recommended using larger samples and alternative outcomes measures.

  1. Paramagnetic cellulose DNA isolation improves DNA yield and quality among diverse plant taxa1

    PubMed Central

    Moeller, Jackson R.; Moehn, Nicholas R.; Waller, Donald M.; Givnish, Thomas J.

    2014-01-01

    • Premise of the study: The chemical diversity of land plants ensures that no single DNA isolation method results in high yield and purity with little effort for all species. Here we evaluate a new technique originally developed for forensic science, based on MagnaCel paramagnetic cellulose particles (PMC), to determine its efficacy in extracting DNA from 25 plant species representing 21 families and 15 orders. • Methods and Results: Yield and purity of DNA isolated by PMC, DNeasy Plant Mini Kit (silica column), and cetyltrimethylammonium bromide (CTAB) methods were compared among four individuals for each of 25 plant species. PMC gave a twofold advantage in average yield, and the relative advantage of the PMC method was greatest for samples with the lowest DNA yields. PMC also produced more consistent sample purity based on absorbance ratios at 260:280 and 260:230 nm. • Conclusions: PMC technology is a promising alternative for plant DNA isolation. PMID:25309836

  2. Xenogenic transfer of isolated murine mitochondria into human rho0 cells can improve respiratory function.

    PubMed

    Katrangi, Eyad; D'Souza, Gerard; Boddapati, Sarathi V; Kulawiec, Mariola; Singh, Keshav K; Bigger, Brian; Weissig, Volkmar

    2007-12-01

    Mitochondrial DNA mutations are the direct cause of several physiological disorders and are also associated with the aging process. The modest progress made over the past two decades towards manipulating the mitochondrial genome and understanding its function within living mammalian cells means that cures for mitochondrial DNA mutations are still elusive. Here, we report that transformed mammalian cells internalize exogenous isolated mitochondria upon simple co-incubation. We first demonstrate the physical presence of internalized mitochondria within recipient cells using fluorescence microscopy. Second, we show that xenogenic transfer of murine mitochondria into human cells lacking functional mitochondria can functionally restore respiration in cells lacking mtDNA. Third, utilizing the natural competence of isolated mitochondria to take up linear DNA molecules, we demonstrate the feasibility of using cellular internalization of isolated exogenous mitochondria as a potential tool for studying mitochondrial genetics in living mammalian cells.

  3. Engagement, Alignment, and Rigor as Vital Signs of High-Quality Instruction: A Classroom Visit Protocol for Instructional Improvement and Research

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Early, Diane M.; Rogge, Ronald D.; Deci, Edward L.

    2014-01-01

    This paper investigates engagement (E), alignment (A), and rigor (R) as vital signs of high-quality teacher instruction as measured by the EAR Classroom Visit Protocol, designed by the Institute for Research and Reform in Education (IRRE). Findings indicated that both school leaders and outside raters could learn to score the protocol with…

  4. Protocol: A high-throughput DNA extraction system suitable for conifers

    PubMed Central

    Bashalkhanov, Stanislav; Rajora, Om P

    2008-01-01

    Background High throughput DNA isolation from plants is a major bottleneck for most studies requiring large sample sizes. A variety of protocols have been developed for DNA isolation from plants. However, many species, including conifers, have high contents of secondary metabolites that interfere with the extraction process or the subsequent analysis steps. Here, we describe a procedure for high-throughput DNA isolation from conifers. Results We have developed a high-throughput DNA extraction protocol for conifers using an automated liquid handler and modifying the Qiagen MagAttract Plant Kit protocol. The modifications involve change to the buffer system and improving the protocol so that it almost doubles the number of samples processed per kit, which significantly reduces the overall costs. We describe two versions of the protocol: one for medium-throughput (MTP) and another for high-throughput (HTP) DNA isolation. The HTP version works from start to end in the industry-standard 96-well format, while the MTP version provides higher DNA yields per sample processed. We have successfully used the protocol for DNA extraction and genotyping of thousands of individuals of several spruce and a pine species. Conclusion A high-throughput system for DNA extraction from conifer needles and seeds has been developed and validated. The quality of the isolated DNA was comparable with that obtained from two commonly used methods: the silica-spin column and the classic CTAB protocol. Our protocol provides a fully automatable and cost effective solution for processing large numbers of conifer samples. PMID:18673554

  5. [Bacillus isolates from rhizosphere of cacti improve germination and bloom in Mammillaria spp. (Cactaceae)].

    PubMed

    Chávez-Ambriz, Lluvia A; Hernández-Morales, Alejandro; Cabrera-Luna, José A; Luna-Martínez, Laura; Pacheco-Aguilar, Juan R

    Cacti are the most representative vegetation of arid zones in Mexico where rainfall is scarce, evapotranspiration is high and soil fertility is low. Plants have developed physiological strategies such as the association with microorganisms in the rhizosphere zone to increase nutrient uptake. In the present work, four bacterial isolates from the rhizosphere of Mammillaria magnimamma and Coryphantha radians were obtained and named as QAP3, QAP19, QAP22 and QAP24, and were genetically identified as belonging to the genus Bacillus, exhibiting in vitro biochemical properties such as phosphate solubilization, indoleacetic acid production and ACC deaminase activity related to plant growth promotion, which was tested by inoculating M. magnimamma seeds. It was found that all isolates increased germination from 17 to 34.3% with respect to the uninoculated control seeds, being QAP24 the one having the greatest effect, accomplishing the germination of viable seeds (84.7%) three days before the control seeds. Subsequently, the inoculation of Mammillari zeilmanniana plants with this isolate showed a positive effect on bloom, registering during two months from a one year period, an increase of up to 31.0% in the number of flowering plants compared to control plants. The characterized Bacillus spp. isolates have potential to be used in conservation programs of plant species from arid zones.

  6. Wavelet methodology to improve single unit isolation in primary motor cortex cells

    PubMed Central

    Ortiz-Rosario, Alexis; Adeli, Hojjat; Buford, John A.

    2016-01-01

    The proper isolation of action potentials recorded extracellularly from neural tissue is an active area of research in the fields of neuroscience and biomedical signal processing. This paper presents an isolation methodology for neural recordings using the wavelet transform (WT), a statistical thresholding scheme, and the principal component analysis (PCA) algorithm. The effectiveness of five different mother wavelets was investigated: biorthogonal, Daubachies, discrete Meyer, symmetric, and Coifman; along with three different wavelet coefficient thresholding schemes: fixed form threshold, Stein’s unbiased estimate of risk, and minimax; and two different thresholding rules: soft and hard thresholding. The signal quality was evaluated using three different statistical measures: mean-squared error, root-mean squared, and signal to noise ratio. The clustering quality was evaluated using two different statistical measures: isolation distance, and L-ratio. This research shows that the selection of the mother wavelet has a strong influence on the clustering and isolation of single unit neural activity, with the Daubachies 4 wavelet and minimax thresholding scheme performing the best. PMID:25794461

  7. Improved protocol to purify untagged amelogenin – Application to murine amelogenin containing the equivalent P70→T point mutation observed in human amelogenesis imperfecta

    DOE PAGES

    Buchko, Garry W.; Shaw, Wendy J.

    2014-10-13

    Amelogenin is the predominant extracellular protein responsible for converting carbonated hydroxyapatite into dental enamel, the hardest and most heavily mineralized tissue in vertebrates. Despite much effort, the precise mechanism by which amelogenin regulates enamel formation is not fully understood. To assist efforts aimed at understanding the biochemical mechanism of enamel formation, more facile protocols to purify recombinantly expressed amelogenin, ideally without any tag to assist affinity purification, are advantageous. Here we describe an improved method to purify milligram quantities of amelogenin that exploits its high solubility in 2% glacial acetic acid under conditions of low ionic strength. The method involvesmore » heating the frozen cell pellet for two 15 min periods at ~70 ºC with two minutes of sonication in between, dialysis twice in 2% acetic acid (1:250 v/v), and reverse phase chromatography. A further improvement in yield is obtained by resuspending the frozen cell pellet in 6 M guanidine hydrochloride in the first step. The acetic acid heating method is illustrated with a murine amelogenin containing the corresponding P70→T point mutation observed in an human amelogenin associated with amelogenesis imperfecta (P71T), while the guanidine hydrochloride heating method is illustrated with wild type murine amelogenin (M180). The self-assembly properties of P71T were probed by NMR chemical shift perturbation studies as a function of protein (0.1 to 1.8 mM) and NaCl (0 to 367 mM) concentration. In conclusion, relative to similar studies with wild type murine amelogenin, P71T self-associates at lower protein or salt concentrations with the interactions initiated near the N-terminus.« less

  8. Improved protocol to purify untagged amelogenin – Application to murine amelogenin containing the equivalent P70→T point mutation observed in human amelogenesis imperfecta

    SciTech Connect

    Buchko, Garry W.; Shaw, Wendy J.

    2014-10-13

    Amelogenin is the predominant extracellular protein responsible for converting carbonated hydroxyapatite into dental enamel, the hardest and most heavily mineralized tissue in vertebrates. Despite much effort, the precise mechanism by which amelogenin regulates enamel formation is not fully understood. To assist efforts aimed at understanding the biochemical mechanism of enamel formation, more facile protocols to purify recombinantly expressed amelogenin, ideally without any tag to assist affinity purification, are advantageous. Here we describe an improved method to purify milligram quantities of amelogenin that exploits its high solubility in 2% glacial acetic acid under conditions of low ionic strength. The method involves heating the frozen cell pellet for two 15 min periods at ~70 ºC with two minutes of sonication in between, dialysis twice in 2% acetic acid (1:250 v/v), and reverse phase chromatography. A further improvement in yield is obtained by resuspending the frozen cell pellet in 6 M guanidine hydrochloride in the first step. The acetic acid heating method is illustrated with a murine amelogenin containing the corresponding P70→T point mutation observed in an human amelogenin associated with amelogenesis imperfecta (P71T), while the guanidine hydrochloride heating method is illustrated with wild type murine amelogenin (M180). The self-assembly properties of P71T were probed by NMR chemical shift perturbation studies as a function of protein (0.1 to 1.8 mM) and NaCl (0 to 367 mM) concentration. In conclusion, relative to similar studies with wild type murine amelogenin, P71T self-associates at lower protein or salt concentrations with the interactions initiated near the N-terminus.

  9. Improved protocol to purify untagged amelogenin - Application to murine amelogenin containing the equivalent P70→T point mutation observed in human amelogenesis imperfecta.

    PubMed

    Buchko, Garry W; Shaw, Wendy J

    2015-01-01

    Amelogenin is the predominant extracellular protein responsible for converting carbonated hydroxyapatite into dental enamel, the hardest and most heavily mineralized tissue in vertebrates. Despite much effort, the precise mechanism by which amelogenin regulates enamel formation is not fully understood. To assist efforts aimed at understanding the biochemical mechanism of enamel formation, more facile protocols to purify recombinantly expressed amelogenin, ideally without any tag to assist affinity purification, are advantageous. Here we describe an improved method to purify milligram quantities of amelogenin that exploits its high solubility in 2% glacial acetic acid under conditions of low ionic strength. The method involves heating the frozen cell pellet for two 15min periods at ∼70°C with 2min of sonication in between, dialysis twice in 2% acetic acid (1:250 v/v), and reverse phase chromatography. A further improvement in yield is obtained by resuspending the frozen cell pellet in 6M guanidine hydrochloride in the first step. The acetic acid heating method is illustrated with a murine amelogenin containing the corresponding P70→T point mutation observed in an human amelogenin associated with amelogenesis imperfecta (P71T), while the guanidine hydrochloride heating method is illustrated with wild type murine amelogenin (M180). The self-assembly properties of P71T were probed by NMR chemical shift perturbation studies as a function of protein (0.1-1.8mM) and NaCl (0-367mM) concentration. Relative to similar studies with wild type murine amelogenin, P71T self-associates at lower protein or salt concentrations with the interactions initiated near the N-terminus.

  10. Line-of-sight performance improvement with reaction-wheel isolation

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Rodden, J. J.; Dougherty, H. J.; Reschke, L. F.; Hasha, M. D.; Davis, L. P.

    1986-01-01

    Design techniques used to isolate and damp vibrations from the reaction control wheels assembly (RCA) from the structural dynamics of the Hubble Space Telescope are described. The four RCAs can generate sufficient torque for large maneuvers and precision control during fine pointing. The RCAs are to operate continuously during observations and thereby pose the potential of inducing jitter. The image stability must be constrained to less than 0.007 arcsec rms per 24 hr and pointing accuracy must be 0.01 arcsec for 100 hr. Vibration-producing characteristics of the RCAs are identified, and test results are provided from measurements of the magnitudes of the associated disturbances. Design features and test results for the vibration isolators employed with the RCAs to effect viscous damping of RCA axial perturbations are presented. The dampers are expected to reduce jitter effects of RCA operation by a half.

  11. Improved methods for isolation and enumeration of Malassezia furfur from human skin.

    PubMed Central

    Leeming, J P; Notman, F H

    1987-01-01

    A medium for the isolation and enumeration of Malassezia furfur is described. Incubation at 34 degrees C yielded geometric mean counts (in CFU per square centimeter) of 2.6 X 10(3) on the forehead, 8.5 X 10(2) on the cheek, and 9.6 X 10(3) on the back. These counts compared favorably with microscopic counts and greatly exceeded those obtained with previously described media. PMID:3667925

  12. Memantine improves memory for taste-avoidance learning in day-old chicks exposed to isolation stress.

    PubMed

    Barber, Teresa A; Meyers, Ryan A; McGettigan, Brian F

    2010-04-01

    Activation of NMDA receptors by glutamate is particularly important in the initial stages of memory consolidation. Memantine, a noncompetitive NMDA receptor antagonist, ameliorates memory impairment under certain circumstances, despite blocking the activation of NMDA receptors. The present experiments tested the hypothesis that memantine can improve memory deficits induced by isolation stress in day-old chicks (Gallus gallus domesticus) trained in a one-trial taste-avoidance task. Three experiments assessed the effects of memantine at different concentrations and in combination with isolation stress. The results of Experiment 1 indicate that, under normal, non-stressed conditions, memory in control animals is strong and 15.0 mM memantine impairs memory, similar to that seen in many studies of the effects of NMDA receptor antagonists on learning. However, the results of Experiments 2 and 3 showed that, when chicks were exposed to isolation stress during the pre-training period, memory formation for saline-injected control animals was impaired and 5.0 mM memantine significantly improved memory in an inverted U-shaped dose response function. The current results extend the findings that memantine can ameliorate memory impairment and supports the hypothesis that memantine, despite its action to reduce NMDA receptor activity, can facilitate normalized memory acquisition.

  13. Very small embryonic-like stem-cell optimization of isolation protocols: an update of molecular signatures and a review of current in vivo applications

    PubMed Central

    Shin, Dong-Myung; Suszynska, Malwina; Mierzejewska, Kasia; Ratajczak, Janina; Ratajczak, Mariusz Z

    2013-01-01

    As the theory of stem cell plasticity was first proposed, we have explored an alternative hypothesis for this phenomenon: namely that adult bone marrow (BM) and umbilical cord blood (UCB) contain more developmentally primitive cells than hematopoietic stem cells (HSCs). In support of this notion, using multiparameter sorting we were able to isolate small Sca1+Lin−CD45− cells and CD133+Lin−CD45− cells from murine BM and human UCB, respectively, which were further enriched for the detection of various early developmental markers such as the SSEA antigen on the surface and the Oct4 and Nanog transcription factors in the nucleus. Similar populations of cells have been found in various organs by our team and others, including the heart, brain and gonads. Owing to their primitive cellular features, such as the high nuclear/cytoplasm ratio and the presence of euchromatin, they are called very small embryonic-like stem cells (VSELs). In the appropriate in vivo models, VSELs differentiate into long-term repopulating HSCs, mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs), lung epithelial cells, cardiomyocytes and gametes. In this review, we discuss the most recent data from our laboratory and other groups regarding the optimal isolation procedures and describe the updated molecular characteristics of VSELs. PMID:24232255

  14. Effectiveness of Motivational Interviewing in improving lipid level in patients with dyslipidemia assisted by general practitioners: Dislip-EM study protocol

    PubMed Central

    2011-01-01

    Background The non-pharmacological approach to cholesterol control in patients with hyperlipidemia is based on the promotion of a healthy diet and physical activity. Thus, to help patients change their habits, it is essential to identify the most effective approach. Many efforts have been devoted to explain changes in or adherence to specific health behaviors. Such efforts have resulted in the development of theories that have been applied in prevention campaigns, and that include brief advice and counseling services. Within this context, Motivational Interviewing has proven to be effective in changing health behaviors in specific cases. However, more robust evidence is needed on the effectiveness of Motivational Interviewing in treating chronic pathologies -such as dyslipidemia- in patients assisted by general practitioners. This article describes a protocol to assess the effectiveness of MI as compared with general practice (brief advice), with the aim of improving lipid level control in patients with dyslipidemia assisted by a general practitioner. Methods/Design An open, two-arm parallel, multicentre, cluster, controlled, randomized, clinical trial will be performed. A total of 48-50 general practitioners from 35 public primary care centers in Spain will be randomized and will recruit 436 patients with dyslipidemia. They will perform an intervention based either on Motivational Interviewing or on the usual brief advice. After an initial assessment, follow-ups will be performed at 2, 4, 8 and 12 months. Primary outcomes are lipid levels (total cholesterol, HDL cholesterol, LDL cholesterol, triglycerides) and cardiovascular risk. The study will assess the degree of dietary and physical activity improvement, weight loss in overweight patients, and adherence to treatment guidelines. Discussion Motivational interview skills constitute the primary strategies GPs use to treat their patients. Having economical, simple, effective and applicable techniques is essential

  15. Improved dose calculation accuracy for low energy brachytherapy by optimizing dual energy CT imaging protocols for noise reduction using sinogram affirmed iterative reconstruction.

    PubMed

    Landry, Guillaume; Gaudreault, Mathieu; van Elmpt, Wouter; Wildberger, Joachim E; Verhaegen, Frank

    2016-03-01

    The goal of this study was to evaluate the noise reduction achievable from dual energy computed tomography (CT) imaging (DECT) using filtered backprojection (FBP) and iterative image reconstruction algorithms combined with increased imaging exposure. We evaluated the data in the context of imaging for brachytherapy dose calculation, where accurate quantification of electron density ρe and effective atomic number Zeff is beneficial. A dual source CT scanner was used to scan a phantom containing tissue mimicking inserts. DECT scans were acquired at 80 kVp/140Sn kVp (where Sn stands for tin filtration) and 100 kVp/140Sn kVp, using the same values of the CT dose index CTDIvol for both settings as a measure for the radiation imaging exposure. Four CTDIvol levels were investigated. Images were reconstructed using FBP and sinogram affirmed iterative reconstruction (SAFIRE) with strength 1,3 and 5. From DECT scans two material quantities were derived, Zeff and ρe. DECT images were used to assign material types and the amount of improperly assigned voxels was quantified for each protocol. The dosimetric impact of improperly assigned voxels was evaluated with Geant4 Monte Carlo (MC) dose calculations for an (125)I source in numerical phantoms. Standard deviations for Zeff and ρe were reduced up to a factor ∼2 when using SAFIRE with strength 5 compared to FBP. Standard deviations on Zeff and ρe as low as 0.15 and 0.006 were achieved for the muscle insert representing typical soft tissue using a CTDIvol of 40 mGy and 3mm slice thickness. Dose calculation accuracy was generally improved when using SAFIRE. Mean (maximum absolute) dose errors of up to 1.3% (21%) with FBP were reduced to less than 1% (6%) with SAFIRE at a CTDIvol of 10 mGy. Using a CTDIvol of 40mGy and SAFIRE yielded mean dose calculation errors of the order of 0.6% which was the MC dose calculation precision in this study and no error was larger than ±2.5% as opposed to errors of up to -4% with FPB. This

  16. Can primary care team-based transition to insulin improve outcomes in adults with type 2 diabetes: the stepping up to insulin cluster randomized controlled trial protocol

    PubMed Central

    2014-01-01

    Background Type 2 diabetes (T2D) brings significant human and healthcare costs. Its progressive nature means achieving normoglycaemia is increasingly difficult, yet critical to avoiding long term vascular complications. Nearly one-half of people with T2D have glycaemic levels out of target. Insulin is effective in achieving glycaemic targets, yet initiation of insulin is often delayed, particularly in primary care. Given limited access to specialist resources and the size of the diabetes epidemic, primary care is where insulin initiation must become part of routine practice. This would also support integrated holistic care for people with diabetes. Our Stepping Up Program is based on a general practitioner (GP) and practice nurse (PN) model of care supported appropriately by endocrinologists and credentialed diabetes educator-registered nurses. Pilot work suggests the model facilitates integration of the technical work of insulin initiation within ongoing generalist care. Methods This protocol is for a cluster randomized controlled trial to examine the effectiveness of the Stepping Up Program to enhance the role of the GP-PN team in initiating insulin and improving glycaemic outcomes for people with T2D. 224 patients between the ages of 18 and 80 years with T2D, on two or more oral hypoglycaemic agents and with an HbA1c ≥7.5% in the last six months will be recruited from 74 general practices. The unit of randomization is the practice. Primary outcome is change in glycated haemoglobin HbA1c (measured as a continuous variable). We hypothesize that the intervention arm will achieve an absolute HbA1c mean difference of 0.5% lower than control group at 12 months follow up. Secondary outcomes include the number of participants who successfully transfer to insulin and the proportion who achieve HbA1c measurement of <7.0%. We will also collect data on patient psychosocial outcomes and healthcare utilization and costs. Discussion The study is a pragmatic translational

  17. The Use of Metal Filled Via Holes for Improving Isolation in LTCC RF and Wireless Multichip Packages

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Ponchak, George E.; Chun, Donghoon; Yook, Jong-Gwan; Katehi, Linda P. B.

    1999-01-01

    LTCC MCMs (Low Temperature Cofired Ceramic MultiChip Module) for RF and wireless systems often use metal filled via holes to improve isolation between the stripline and microstrip interconnects. In this paper, results from a 3D-FEM electromagnetic characterization of microstrip and stripline interconnects with metal filled via fences for isolation are presented. It is shown that placement of a via hole fence closer than three times the substrate height to the transmission lines increases radiation and coupling. Radiation loss and reflections are increased when a short via fence is used in areas suspected of having high radiation. Also, via posts should not be separated by more than three times the substrate height for low radiation loss, coupling, and suppression of higher order modes in a package.

  18. Thermophilic and cellulolytic consortium isolated from composting plants improves anaerobic digestion of cellulosic biomass: Toward a microbial resource management approach.

    PubMed

    Kinet, R; Destain, J; Hiligsmann, S; Thonart, P; Delhalle, L; Taminiau, B; Daube, G; Delvigne, F

    2015-01-01

    A cellulolytic consortium was isolated from a composting plant in order to boost the initial hydrolysis step encountered in anaerobic digestion. Improvement of the cellulose degradation, as well as biogas production, was observed for the cultures inoculated with the exogenous consortium. Metagenomics analyses pointed out a weak richness (related to the number of OTUs) of the exogenous consortium induced by the selective pressure (cellulose as sole carbon source) met during the initial isolation steps. Main microbial strains determined were strictly anaerobic and belong to the Clostridia class. During cellulose anaerobic degradation, pH drop induced a strong modification of the microbial population. Despite the fact that richness and evenness were very weak, the exogenous consortium was able to adapt and to maintain the cellulolytic degradation potential. This important result point out the fact that simplified microbial communities could be used in order to increase the robustness of mixed cultures involved in environmental biotechnology.

  19. A best practice fall prevention exercise program to improve balance, strength / power, and psychosocial health in older adults: study protocol for a randomized controlled trial

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    Background With increasing age neuromuscular deficits (e.g., sarcopenia) may result in impaired physical performance and an increased risk for falls. Prominent intrinsic fall-risk factors are age-related decreases in balance and strength / power performance as well as cognitive decline. Additional studies are needed to develop specifically tailored exercise programs for older adults that can easily be implemented into clinical practice. Thus, the objective of the present trial is to assess the effects of a fall prevention program that was developed by an interdisciplinary expert panel on measures of balance, strength / power, body composition, cognition, psychosocial well-being, and falls self-efficacy in healthy older adults. Additionally, the time-related effects of detraining are tested. Methods/Design Healthy old people (n = 54) between the age of 65 to 80 years will participate in this trial. The testing protocol comprises tests for the assessment of static / dynamic steady-state balance (i.e., Sharpened Romberg Test, instrumented gait analysis), proactive balance (i.e., Functional Reach Test; Timed Up and Go Test), reactive balance (i.e., perturbation test during bipedal stance; Push and Release Test), strength (i.e., hand grip strength test; Chair Stand Test), and power (i.e., Stair Climb Power Test; countermovement jump). Further, body composition will be analysed using a bioelectrical impedance analysis system. In addition, questionnaires for the assessment of psychosocial (i.e., World Health Organisation Quality of Life Assessment-Bref), cognitive (i.e., Mini Mental State Examination), and fall risk determinants (i.e., Fall Efficacy Scale – International) will be included in the study protocol. Participants will be randomized into two intervention groups or the control / waiting group. After baseline measures, participants in the intervention groups will conduct a 12-week balance and strength / power exercise intervention 3 times per week, with

  20. Analyzing the effect of routing protocols on media access control protocols in radio networks

    SciTech Connect

    Barrett, C. L.; Drozda, M.; Marathe, A.; Marathe, M. V.

    2002-01-01

    We study the effect of routing protocols on the performance of media access control (MAC) protocols in wireless radio networks. Three well known MAC protocols: 802.11, CSMA, and MACA are considered. Similarly three recently proposed routing protocols: AODV, DSR and LAR scheme 1 are considered. The experimental analysis was carried out using GloMoSim: a tool for simulating wireless networks. The main focus of our experiments was to study how the routing protocols affect the performance of the MAC protocols when the underlying network and traffic parameters are varied. The performance of the protocols was measured w.r.t. five important parameters: (i) number of received packets, (ii) average latency of each packet, (iii) throughput (iv) long term fairness and (v) number of control packets at the MAC layer level. Our results show that combinations of routing and MAC protocols yield varying performance under varying network topology and traffic situations. The result has an important implication; no combination of routing protocol and MAC protocol is the best over all situations. Also, the performance analysis of protocols at a given level in the protocol stack needs to be studied not locally in isolation but as a part of the complete protocol stack. A novel aspect of our work is the use of statistical technique, ANOVA (Analysis of Variance) to characterize the effect of routing protocols on MAC protocols. This technique is of independent interest and can be utilized in several other simulation and empirical studies.

  1. A new improved protocol for in vitro intratubular dentinal bacterial contamination for antimicrobial endodontic tests: standardization and validation by confocal laser scanning microscopy

    PubMed Central

    de ANDRADE, Flaviana Bombarda; ARIAS, Marcela Paola Castro; MALIZA, Amanda Garcia Alves; DUARTE, Marco Antonio Hungaro; GRAEFF, Márcia Sirlene Zardin; AMOROSO-SILVA, Pablo Andrés; MIDENA, Raquel Zanin; de MORAES, Ivaldo Gomes

    2015-01-01

    Objectives To compare three methods of intratubular contamination that simulate endodontic infections using confocal laser scanning microscopy (CLSM). Material and Methods Two pre-existing models of dentinal contamination were used to induce intratubular infection (groups A and B). These methods were modified in an attempt to improve the model (group C). Among the modifications it may be included: specimen contamination for five days, ultrasonic bath with BHI broth after specimen sterilization, use of E. faecalis during the exponential growth phase, greater concentration of inoculum, and two cycles of centrifugation on alternate days with changes of culture media. All specimens were longitudinally sectioned and stained with of LIVE/DEAD® for 20 min. Specimens were assessed using CLSM, which provided images of the depth of viable bacterial proliferation inside the dentinal tubules. Additionally, three examiners used scores to classify the CLSM images according to the following parameters: homogeneity, density, and depth of the bacterial contamination inside the dentinal tubules. Kruskal-Wallis and Dunn’s tests were used to evaluate the live and dead cells rates, and the scores obtained. Results The contamination scores revealed higher contamination levels in group C when compared with groups A and B (p<0.05). No differences were observed between group A and B (p>0.05). The volume of live cells in group C was higher than in groups A and B (p<0.05). Conclusion The new protocol for intratubular infection resulted in high and uniform patterns of bacterial contamination and higher cell viability in all specimens when compared with the current methods. PMID:26200524

  2. Improved Method for Isolation of Microbial RNA from Biofuel Feedstock for Metatranscriptomics

    SciTech Connect

    Piao, Hailan; Markillie, Lye Meng; Culley, David E.; Mackie, Roderick I.; Hess, Matthias

    2013-03-28

    Metatranscriptomics—gene express profiling via DNA sequencing—is a powerful tool to identify genes that are ac- tively expressed and might contribute to the phenotype of individual organisms or the phenome (the sum of several phenotypes) of a microbial community. Furthermore, metatranscriptome studies can result in extensive catalogues of genes that encode for enzymes of industrial relevance. In both cases, a major challenge for generating a high quality metatranscriptome is the extreme lability of RNA and its susceptibility to ubiquitous RNAses. The microbial commu- nity (the microbiome) of the cow rumen efficiently degrades lignocelullosic biomass, generates significant amounts of methane, a greenhouse gas twenty times more potent than carbon dioxide, and is of general importance for the physio- logical wellbeing of the host animal. Metatranscriptomes of the rumen microbiome from animals kept under different conditions and from various types of rumen-incubated biomass can be expected to provide new insights into these highly interesting phenotypes and subsequently provide the framework for an enhanced understanding of this socio- economically important ecosystem. The ability to isolate large amounts of intact RNA will significantly facilitate accu- rate transcript annotation and expression profiling. Here we report a method that combines mechanical disruption with chemical homogenization of the sample material and consistently yields 1 mg of intact RNA from 1 g of rumen-in- cubated biofuel feedstock. The yield of total RNA obtained with our method exceeds the RNA yield achieved with pre- viously reported isolation techniques, which renders RNA isolated with the method presented here as an ideal starting material for metatranscriptomic analyses and other molecular biology applications that require significant amounts of starting material.

  3. Study protocol of a randomised controlled trial of intranasal ketamine compared with intranasal fentanyl for analgesia in children with suspected, isolated extremity fractures in the paediatric emergency department

    PubMed Central

    Reynolds, Stacy L; Studnek, Jonathan R; Bryant, Kathleen; VanderHave, Kelly; Grossman, Eric; Moore, Charity G; Young, James; Hogg, Melanie; Runyon, Michael S

    2016-01-01

    Introduction Fentanyl is the most widely studied intranasal (IN) analgesic in children. IN subdissociative (INSD) ketamine may offer a safe and efficacious alternative to IN fentanyl and may decrease overall opioid use during the emergency department (ED) stay. This study examines the feasibility of a larger, multicentre clinical trial comparing the safety and efficacy of INSD ketamine to IN fentanyl and the potential role for INSD ketamine in reducing total opioid medication usage. Methods and analysis This double-blind, randomised controlled, pilot trial will compare INSD ketamine (1 mg/kg) to IN fentanyl (1.5 μg/kg) for analgesia in 80 children aged 4–17 years with acute pain from a suspected, single extremity fracture. The primary safety outcome for this pilot trial will be the frequency of cumulative side effects and adverse events at 60 min after drug administration. The primary efficacy outcome will be exploratory and will be the mean reduction of pain scale scores at 20 min. The study is not powered to examine efficacy. Secondary outcome measures will include the total dose of opioid pain medication in morphine equivalents/kg/hour (excluding study drug) required during the ED stay, number and reason for screen failures, time to consent, and the number and type of protocol deviations. Patients may receive up to 2 doses of study drug. Ethics and dissemination This study was approved by the US Food and Drug Administration, the local institutional review board and the study data safety monitoring board. This study data will be submitted for publication regardless of results and will be used to establish feasibility for a multicentre, non-inferiority trial. Trial registration number NCT02521415. PMID:27609854

  4. Novel enabling technologies of gene isolation and plant transformation for improved crop protection

    SciTech Connect

    Torok, Tamas

    2013-02-04

    Meeting the needs of agricultural producers requires the continued development of improved transgenic crop protection products. The completed project focused on developing novel enabling technologies of gene discovery and plant transformation to facilitate the generation of such products.

  5. Precision orthotics: optimising ankle foot orthoses to improve gait in patients with neuromuscular diseases; protocol of the PROOF-AFO study, a prospective intervention study

    PubMed Central

    Nollet, Frans; Harlaar, Jaap; Brehm, Merel-Anne

    2017-01-01

    Introduction In patients with neuromuscular disorders and subsequent calf muscle weakness, metabolic walking energy cost (EC) is nearly always increased, which may restrict walking activity in daily life. To reduce walking EC, a spring-like ankle-foot-orthosis (AFO) can be prescribed. However, the reduction in EC that can be obtained from these AFOs is stiffness dependent, and it is unknown which AFO stiffness would optimally support calf muscle weakness. The PROOF-AFO study aims to determine the effectiveness of stiffness-optimised AFOs on reducing walking EC, and improving gait biomechanics and walking speed in patients with calf muscle weakness, compared to standard, non-optimised AFOs. A second aim is to build a model to predict optimal AFO stiffness. Methods and analysis A prospective intervention study will be conducted. In total, 37 patients with calf muscle weakness who already use an AFO will be recruited. At study entry, participants will receive a new custom-made spring-like AFO of which the stiffness can be varied. For each patient, walking EC (primary outcome), gait biomechanics and walking speed (secondary outcomes) will be assessed for five stiffness configurations and the patient's own (standard) AFO. On the basis of walking EC and gait biomechanics outcomes, the optimal AFO stiffness will be determined. After wearing this optimal AFO for 3 months, walking EC, gait biomechanics and walking speed will be assessed again and compared to the standard AFO. Ethics and dissemination The Medical Ethics Committee of the Academic Medical Centre in Amsterdam has approved the study protocol. The study is registered at the Dutch trial register (NTR 5170). The PROOF-AFO study is the first to compare stiffness-optimised AFOs with usual care AFOs in patients with calf muscle weakness. The results will also provide insight into factors that influence optimal AFO stiffness in these patients. The results are necessary for improving orthotic treatment and will be

  6. Application of In Situ Fiberization for fabrication of improved strain isolation pads and graphite epoxy composites

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Rosser, R. W.; Seibold, R. W.; Basiulis, D. I.

    1982-01-01

    The feasibility of applying the in situ fiberization process to the fabrication of strain isolation pads (SIP) for the Space Shuttle and to the fabrication of graphite-epoxy composites was evaluated. The ISF process involves the formation of interconnected polymer fiber networks by agitation of dilute polymer solutions under controlled conditions. High temperature polymers suitable for SIP use were fiberized and a successful fiberization of polychloro trifluoroethylene, a relatively high melting polymer, was achieved. Attempts to fiberize polymers with greater thermal stability were unsuccessful, apparently due to characteristics caused by the presence of aromaticity in the backbone of such materials. Graphite-epoxy composites were fabricated by interconnecting two dimensional arrays of graphite fiber with polypropylene IS fibers with subsequent epoxy resin impregnation. Mechanical property tests were performed on laminated panels of this material to evaluate intralaminar and interlaminar shear strength, and thus fracture toughness. Test results were generally unpromising.

  7. The isolated and perfused working heart of the frog, Rana esculenta: an improved preparation.

    PubMed

    Acierno, R; Gattuso, A; Cerra, M C; Pellegrino, D; Agnisola, C; Tota, B

    1994-05-01

    1. An in vitro preparation of the intact heart of the frog Rana esculenta was set up. 2. The isolated heart, perfused at constant pressure, was spontaneously beating and able to generate physiological values of output pressure, cardiac output, ventricle work and power. It showed the typical phenomenon of the "hypodynamic state" after a relatively constant time from the onset of the perfusion. 3. Perfusion with air-saturated saline and 99.5% oxygen-saturated saline did not show significant differences in the recorded parameters. 4. This experimental model represents a useful tool for physiological and pharmacological studies, especially when the direct analysis of the effects of hormones, mediators or drugs requires an intact heart preparation.

  8. Improvements in the production of doubled haploids in durum wheat (Triticum turgidum L.) through isolated microspore culture.

    PubMed

    Cistué, Luis; Romagosa, I; Batlle, F; Echávarri, B

    2009-05-01

    The objective of this study was to produce durum wheat doubled haploid (DH) plants through the induction of microspore embryogenesis. The microspore culture technique was improved to maximize production of green plants per spike using three commercial cultivars. Studies on factors such as induction media composition, induction media support and the stage and growth of donor plants were carried out in order to develop an efficient protocol to regenerate green and fertile DH plants. Microspores were plated on a C(17) induction culture medium with ovary co-culture and a supplement of glutathione plus glutamine; 300 g/l Ficoll Type-400 was incorporated to the induction medium support. Donor plants were fertilized with a combination of macro and microelements. With the cultivars 'Ciccio' and 'Claudio' an average of 36.5 and 148.5 fertile plants were produced, respectively, from 1,000 anthers inoculated. This technique was then used to produce fertile DH plants of potential agronomic interest from a collection of ten F(1) crosses involving cultivars of high breeding value. From these crosses 849 green plants were obtained and seed was harvested from 702 plants indicating that 83% of green plants were fertile and therefore were spontaneously DHs. No aneuploid plant was obtained. The 702 plants yielded enough seeds to be field tested. One of the DH lines obtained by microspore embryogenesis, named 'Lanuza', has been sent to the Spanish Plant Variety Office for Registration by the Batlle Seed Company. This protocol can be used instead of the labor-intensive inter-generic crossing with maize as an economically feasible method to obtain DHs for most crosses involving the durum wheat cultivars grown in Spain.

  9. Dosimetry Formalism and Implementation of a Homogenous Irradiation Protocol to Improve the Accuracy of Small Animal Whole-Body Irradiation Using a 137Cs Irradiator.

    PubMed

    Brodin, N Patrik; Chen, Yong; Yaparpalvi, Ravindra; Guha, Chandan; Tomé, Wolfgang A

    2016-02-01

    Shielded Cs irradiators are routinely used in pre-clinical radiation research to perform in vitro or in vivo investigations. Without appropriate dosimetry and irradiation protocols in place, there can be large uncertainty in the delivered dose of radiation between irradiated subjects that could lead to inaccurate and possibly misleading results. Here, a dosimetric evaluation of the JL Shepard Mark I-68A Cs irradiator and an irradiation technique for whole-body irradiation of small animals that allows one to limit the between subject variation in delivered dose to ±3% are provided. Mathematical simulation techniques and Gafchromic EBT film were used to describe the region within the irradiation cavity with homogeneous dose distribution (100% ± 5%), the dosimetric impact of varying source-to-subject distance, and the variation in attenuation thickness due to turntable rotation. Furthermore, an irradiation protocol and dosimetry formalism that allows calculation of irradiation time for whole-body irradiation of small animals is proposed that is designed to ensure a more consistent dose delivery between irradiated subjects. To compare this protocol with the conventional irradiation protocol suggested by the vendor, high-resolution film dosimetry measurements evaluating the dose difference between irradiation subjects and the dose distribution throughout subjects was performed using phantoms resembling small animals. Based on these results, there can be considerable variation in the delivered dose of > ± 5% using the conventional irradiation protocol for whole-body irradiation doses below 5 Gy. Using the proposed irradiation protocol this variability can be reduced to within ±3% and the dosimetry formalism allows for more accurate calculation of the irradiation time in relation to the intended prescription dose.

  10. Educating the Isolated Ageing: Improving the Quality of Life of the Housebound Elderly through Educational Teleconferencing.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Swindell, Richard; Mayhew, Claire

    1996-01-01

    Eighteen homebound frail elderly took part in an eight-week teleconference that provided practical information (nutrition, health, social services) as well as stimulated thinking. Quality of life improvements and further interest in education resulted. Teleconferencing proved a cost-effective method of reaching homebound persons. (SK)

  11. Resolution improvement of isolated line pattern in quarter-micrometer level by layout-optimized assistant pattern method

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tounai, Keiichiro; Aizaki, Naoaki

    1996-06-01

    In the previous report, we showed the optimized results of off-axis illumination (OAI) for 0.25 micrometers resist patterning. Wide DOF was obtained for dense patterns like 1:1 L and S pattern, however, DOF was small for the sparse patterns. In order to widen the DOF for isolated line patterns under the OAI, we have examined the assistant pattern method, which needs the only unresolved additional patterns beside the isolated pattern. Optimization has been carried out by light intensity simulation under the following criteria; CD variation within plus or minus 10 percent, resist thickness loss of 10 percent and unresolved assistant patterns. CD value has been defined by the threshold method of aerial images. The evaluation method by aerial image is useful for rough estimate because the calculation is very rapid. However, the difference from the experimental results cannot be ignored in some cases, especially, in important CD- focus characteristics. For more accurate evaluation, we also investigated the result difference using a simplified resist development model. This model is useful for rapid calculation as light intensity calculation. From the evaluation of the exposure dose and focus latitude (EFL), the optimal layout must be decided considering exposure dose latitude decrease by resist development process. We have additionally investigated the combination effect of assistant pattern and halftone phase-shifting under OAI. EFL was improved a little by halftone phase- shifting mask without assistant patterns, on the other hand, EFL was improved by combination of HPSM and assistant patterns.

  12. Study protocol of a randomized controlled trial to improve cancer prevention behaviors in adolescents and adults using a web-based intervention supplemented with SMS

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    Background The overall number of cancer cases is increasing and, therefore, strengthening cancer prevention has become a priority. The institutions responsible for its control establish guidelines for primary prevention. These include recommendations, such as: not smoking, following a healthy diet, doing daily physical exercise or avoiding overweight. Adolescence is a period of adoption and/or consolidation of health behaviors, and both school- and family-based interventions have proven effective to improve them. Furthermore, online and mobile phone educational interventions are encouraging. Consequently, the main aim of this study is to assess the efficacy of an intervention in which these requirements (school, family, the Internet and SMS) are combined to prevent behavioral cancer risk. Methods This protocol describes the design and implementation of a complex online program that includes a randomized controlled trial put into practice in two countries: Spain and Mexico. Adolescents and adults of their environment (relatives and teachers) who voluntarily participate will be randomly assigned to the experimental group or to the control group once they have completed the online pre-test. The experimental group members will have free access to a tailor-made and interactive website (http://www.alertagrumete.com). During the academic year, this website will be periodically updated with different school and leisure activities related to the avoidance of risk behaviors. To encourage participation, the program includes a competition that gives rewards to the winners. SMS are also sent to students to stimulate the adoption of healthy behaviors and as a reminder of participation. Finished the intervention, an online post-test is performed in both groups and the impact on the risk behaviors is therefore assessed. Discussion The program is pioneer, since it combines many components which have already proven effective in previous researches. Moreover, it aims to compare

  13. Randomised controlled trial of an automated, interactive telephone intervention to improve type 2 diabetes self-management (Telephone-Linked Care Diabetes Project): study protocol

    PubMed Central

    2010-01-01

    Background An estimated 285 million people worldwide have diabetes and its prevalence is predicted to increase to 439 million by 2030. For the year 2010, it is estimated that 3.96 million excess deaths in the age group 20-79 years are attributable to diabetes around the world. Self-management is recognised as an integral part of diabetes care. This paper describes the protocol of a randomised controlled trial of an automated interactive telephone system aiming to improve the uptake and maintenance of essential diabetes self-management behaviours. Methods/Design A total of 340 individuals with type 2 diabetes will be randomised, either to the routine care arm, or to the intervention arm in which participants receive the Telephone-Linked Care (TLC) Diabetes program in addition to their routine care. The intervention requires the participants to telephone the TLC Diabetes phone system weekly for 6 months. They receive the study handbook and a glucose meter linked to a data uploading device. The TLC system consists of a computer with software designed to provide monitoring, tailored feedback and education on key aspects of diabetes self-management, based on answers voiced or entered during the current or previous conversations. Data collection is conducted at baseline (Time 1), 6-month follow-up (Time 2), and 12-month follow-up (Time 3). The primary outcomes are glycaemic control (HbA1c) and quality of life (Short Form-36 Health Survey version 2). Secondary outcomes include anthropometric measures, blood pressure, blood lipid profile, psychosocial measures as well as measures of diet, physical activity, blood glucose monitoring, foot care and medication taking. Information on utilisation of healthcare services including hospital admissions, medication use and costs is collected. An economic evaluation is also planned. Discussion Outcomes will provide evidence concerning the efficacy of a telephone-linked care intervention for self-management of diabetes. Furthermore

  14. Isolating the perceptual from the social: tapping in shared space results in improved synchrony.

    PubMed

    Wu, David W-L; Chapman, Craig S; Walker, Esther; Bischof, Walter F; Kingstone, Alan

    2013-10-01

    Current theory suggests that interpersonal synchrony is an important social behavior in that it not only serves as a form of "social glue," but it also arises automatically in a social context. Theorists suggest potential mechanisms for interpersonal synchrony, ranging from a "low-level" social-perceptual system account to a "high-level" social-motivational explanation. Past studies that suggest synchrony can be influenced by social factors do not discriminate between these accounts. The current investigation seeks to isolate the effect of the high-level social system on interpersonal synchrony by investigating the effects of spatial proximity on unintentional coordinated tapping between two naïve participants. Dyads performed a synchronization-continuation task either in the same room, in different rooms, or in different rooms but with the ability to hear each other tap. Participant taps were represented by a box that flashed on the monitor to control visual information across all three conditions. Same-room dyads had increased coordination over different-room dyads, whereas dyads that shared audio but were in different rooms showed an intermediate level of coordination. The present study demonstrates that shared space, independent of perceptual differences in stimuli, can increase unintentional coordinated tapping.

  15. Modeling and testing of cryo-adsorbent hydrogen storage tanks with improved thermal isolation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Raymond, Alexander William; Reiter, Joseph

    2012-06-01

    One storage concept for hydrogen-fueled vehicles is physical adsorption of hydrogen at cryogenic temperatures (nominally 80 K). During long idle periods, parasitic heat transfer from the environment induces desorption to the tank void volume. This desorption increases tank pressure such that it must be vented. To reduce the amount of fuel lost to venting, parasitic heating is minimized using multi-layer vacuum insulation and thermally isolating structures. A model is developed to predict the amount of conduction through structural supports and hydrogen lines, radiation through multi-layer insulation, and rarified gas conduction in the vacuum jacket of a tank sized for adsorption storage. The model reveals that conduction through structural supports is significant for cases of interest. Thus, two structural support architectures are compared: one utilizing G-10 CR composite and another involving KevlarTM cable. The structural members are sized to support comparable inertial loadings; the overall parasitic heat transfer is found to be as much as 38 percent less for the KevlarTM design. A lumped-parameter tank simulation is used to relate parasitic heat transfer to dormancy time and venting rate. The results of thermal testing of a sub-scale tank simulator are compared with model predictions.

  16. An improved helper phage system for efficient isolation of specific antibody molecules in phage display.

    PubMed

    Baek, Hyunjung; Suk, Kyoung-ho; Kim, Yong-hwan; Cha, Sanghoon

    2002-03-01

    Phage display technology has been applied in many fields of biological and medical sciences to study molecular interactions and especially in the generation of monoclonal antibodies of human origin. However, extremely low display level of antibody molecules on the surface of phage is an intrinsic problem of a phagemid-based display system resulting in low success rate of isolating specific binding molecules. We show here that display of single-chain antibody fragment (scFv) generated with pIGT3 phagemid can be increased dramatically by using a genetically modified Ex-phage. Ex-phage has a mutant pIII gene that produces a functional wild-type pIII in suppressing Escherichia coli strains but does not make any pIII in non-suppressing E.coli strains. Packaging phagemids encoding antibody-pIII fusion in F+ non-suppressing E.coli strains with Ex-phage enhanced the display level of antibody fragments on the surfaces of recombinant phage particles resulting in an increase of antigen-binding reactivity >100-fold compared to packaging with M13KO7 helper phage. Thus, the Ex-phage and pIGT3 phagemid vector provides a system for the efficient enrichment of specific binding antibodies from a phage display library and, thereby, increases the chance of obtaining more diverse antibodies specific for target antigens.

  17. Evaluation of selected white-rot fungal isolates for improving the sugar yield from wheat straw.

    PubMed

    Cianchetta, Stefano; Di Maggio, Barbara; Burzi, Pier Luigi; Galletti, Stefania

    2014-05-01

    Biological pretreatment of lignocellulosic biomass by fungi can represent a low-cost and eco-friendly alternative to physicochemical methods to facilitate enzymatic hydrolysis. However, fungal metabolism can cause cellulose loss and it is therefore necessary to use the appropriate fungal strain-biomass type combination. In this work, the effects of biological pretreatments carried out by five different fungi on enzymatic hydrolysis of wheat straw were investigated. The best results were obtained with a Ceriporiopsis subvermispora strain, which minimized weight and cellulose losses and gave the highest net sugar yield (calculated with respect to the holocellulose content of the untreated straw), up to 44 % after a 10-week pretreatment, more than doubling the yields obtained with the other isolates. Moreover, prolonging the pretreatment from 4 up to 10 weeks produced a 2-fold increase, up to 60 %, in digestibility (sugar yield, calculated considering the holocellulose content of the pretreated material). The hemicellulose content of the pretreated material resulted inversely correlated with digestibility, and it could thus be utilized as an index of the pretreatment efficacy. Finally, a correlation was also found between digestibility and the difference between the absorbance values at 290 and 320 nm of pretreated wheat straw extracts.

  18. Characterizing the Interaction Between Routing and MAC Protocols in Ad-Hoc Networks

    SciTech Connect

    Barrett, C. L.; Drozda, M.; Marathe, A.; Marathe, M. V.

    2002-01-01

    We empirically study the effect of mobility on the performance of protocols designed for wireless ad-hoc networks. An important objective is to study the interaction of the Routing and MAC layer protocols under different mobility parameters. We use three basic mobility models: grid mobility model, random waypoint model, and exponential correlated random model. The performance of protocols is measured in terms of (i) latency, (ii) throughput, (iii) number of packets received, (iv) long term fairness and (v) number of control packets at the MAC and routing layer level. Three different commonly studied routing protocols are used: AODV, DSR and LAR1. Similarly three well known MAC protocols are used: MACA, 802.1 1 and CSMA. Our main contribution is simulation based experiments coupled with rigorous statistical analysis to characterize the interaction of MAC layer protocols with routing layer protocols in ad-hoc networks. From the results, we can conclude the following: e No single MAC or Routing protocol dominated the other protocols in their class. Probably more interestingly, no MAURouting protocol combination was better than other combinations over all scenarios and response variables. 0 In general, it is not meaningful to speak about a MAC or a routing protocol in isolation. Presence of interaction leads to trade-offs between the amount of control packets generated by each layer. The results raise the possibility of improving the performance of a particular MAC layer protocol by using a cleverly designed routing protocol or vice-versa. Thus in order to improve the performanceof a communication network, it is important to study the entire protocol stack as a single algorithmic construct; optimizing individual layers in the seven layer OS1 stack will not yield performance improvements beyond a point. A methodological contribution of this paper is the use of statistical methods such as analysis of variance (ANOVA), to characterize the interaction between the protocols

  19. Isolation of Chlamydomonas Flagella

    PubMed Central

    Craige, Branch; Brown, Jason M.; Witman, George B.

    2014-01-01

    A simple, scalable, and fast procedure for the isolation of Chlamydomonas flagella is described. Chlamydomonas can be synchronously deflagellated by treatment with chemicals, pH shock, or mechanical shear. The Basic Protocol describes the procedure for flagellar isolation using dibucaine to induce flagellar abscission; we also describe the pH shock method as an Alternate Protocol when flagellar regeneration is desirable. Sub-fractionation of the isolated flagella into axonemes and the membrane + matrix fraction is described in a Support Protocol. PMID:23728744

  20. R&D Services to Develop an Improved Isolation Technology Radiation Hardened Bipolar Integrated Circuits (PEDIC).

    DTIC Science & Technology

    1981-06-01

    for improved single crystal thickness control in D! material, the process must hc extended to 3 -inch material. The greater degree of bow and...Surface to n+ Thickness 𔃺.2 mil 0.05 mil 0.02 mil Slice Bow 1.5 mils (2- 3 ) mils 2 mils Usable Area 70% 50% 80% Up-Diffusion Uncontrolled Significant...I HI. TECHfNIC~AL DISC’USSION......................... .................... 3 A. Present D)1 Processes

  1. Strategies to improve fertility in post partum Bos indicus cows submitted to a fixed-time insemination protocol with GnRH and PGF2a

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    In Experiment 1, we evaluated the effects of two lengths of progesterone exposure (CIDR; 7 vs. 14 d) prior to a modified CO-Synch protocol, with or without temporary weaning (TW) before GnRH treatments, on fertility of suckled Bos indicus Nelore cows (n = 283) and on calf performance. Timed AI (TAI)...

  2. Echinococcus multilocularis primary cells: improved isolation, small-scale cultivation and RNA interference.

    PubMed

    Spiliotis, Markus; Mizukami, Chiaki; Oku, Yuzaburo; Kiss, Ferenc; Brehm, Klaus; Gottstein, Bruno

    2010-11-01

    In this study we demonstrate RNA interference mediated knock-down of target gene expression in Echinococcus multilocularis primary cells on both the transcriptional and translational level. In addition, we report on an improved method for generating E. multilocularis primary cell mini-aggregates from in vitro cultivated metacestode vesicles, and on the cultivation of small numbers of small interfering RNA-transfected cells in vitro over an extended period of time. This allows assessments on the effects of RNA interference performed on Echinococcus primary cells with regard to growth, proliferation, differentiation of the parasite and the formation of novel metacestode vesicles in vitro.

  3. Improving functional properties of pea protein isolate for microencapsulation of flaxseed oil.

    PubMed

    Bajaj, Poonam R; Bhunia, Kanishka; Kleiner, Leslie; Joyner Melito, Helen S; Smith, Denise; Ganjyal, Girish; Sablani, Shyam S

    2017-04-10

    Unhydrolyzed pea protein (UN) forms very viscous emulsions when used at higher concentrations. To overcome this, UN was hydrolyzed using enzymes Alcalase, Flavourzyme, Neutrase, Alcalase-Flavourzyme and Neutrase-Flavourzyme at 50°C for 0 min, 30 min, 60 min and 120 min to form hydrolyzed proteins A, F, N, AF and NF, respectively. All hydrolyzed proteins had lower apparent viscosity and higher solubility than UN. Foaming capacity of A was highest, followed by NF, N, and AF. Hydrolyzed proteins N60, A60, NF60 and AF60 were prepared by hydrolyzing UN for 60 min and used further for microencapsulation. At 20% oil loading (on a total solid basis), the encapsulated powder N60 had the highest microencapsulation efficiency (ME = 56.2). A decrease in ME occurred as oil loading increased to 40%. To improve the ME of N60, >90%, UN and maltodextrin were added. Flowability and particle size distribution of microencapsulated powders with >90% microencapsulation efficiency and morphology of all powders were investigated. This study identified a new way to improve pea protein functionality in emulsions, as well as a new application of hydrolyzed pea protein as wall material for microencapsulation.

  4. New opportunities for improved ribotyping of C. difficile clinical isolates by exploring their genomes.

    PubMed

    Gürtler, Volker; Grando, Danilla

    2013-06-01

    Clostridium difficile causes outbreaks of infectious diarrhoea, most commonly occurring in healthcare institutions. Recently, concern has been raised with reports of C. difficile disease in those traditionally thought to be at low risk i.e. community acquired rather than healthcare acquired. This has increased awareness for the need to track outbreaks and PCR-ribotyping has found widespread use to elucidate epidemiologically linked isolates. PCR-ribotyping uses conserved regions of the 16S rRNA gene and 23S rRNA gene as primer binding sites to produce varying PCR products due to the intergenic spacer (ITS1) regions of the multiple operons. With the explosion of whole genome sequence data it became possible to analyse the start of the 23S rRNA gene for a more accurate selection of regions closer to the end of the ITS1. However the following questions must still be asked: (i) Does the chromosomal organisation of the rrn operon vary between C. difficile strains? and (ii) just how conserved are the primer binding regions? Eight published C. difficile genomes have been aligned to produce a detailed database of indels of the ITS1's from the rrn operon sets. An iPad Filemaker Go App has been constructed and named RiboTyping (RT). It contains detail such as sequences, ribotypes, strain numbers, GenBank numbers and genome position numbers. Access to various levels of the database is provided so that details can be printed. There are three main regions of the rrn operon that have been analysed by the database and related to each other by strain, ribotype and operon: (1) 16S gene (2) ITS1 indels (3) 23S gene. This has enabled direct intra- and inter-genomic comparisons at the strain, ribotype and operon (allele) levels in each of the three genomic regions. This is the first time that such an analysis has been done. By using the RT App with search criteria it will be possible to select probe combinations for specific strains/ribotypes/rrn operons for experiments to do with

  5. Improved method for expression and isolation of the Mycoplasma hominis arginine deiminase from the recombinant strain of Escherichia coli.

    PubMed

    Fayura, Lyubov R; Boretsky, Yuriy R; Pynyaha, Yuriy V; Wheatley, Denys N; Sibirny, Andriy A

    2013-09-20

    Arginine deiminase is a promising anticancer drug active against melanoma, hepatocarcinoma and other tumors. Recombinant strains of Escherichia coli that express arginine deiminase from pathogenic bacteria Mycoplasma have been developed. However, production costs of heterologous arginine deiminase are high due to use of an expensive inducer and extraction buffer, as well as using diluted culture for enzyme induction. We report on a new advanced protocol for Mycoplasma hominis arginine deiminase expression, extraction and renaturation. The main improvements include manipulation with dense suspensions of E. coli, use of lactose instead of isopropyl β-D-1-thiogalactopyranoside as an inducer and a cheaper but not less efficient buffer for solubilization of arginine deiminase inclusion bodies. In addition, supplementation of the storage culture medium with glucose and substrate (arginine) significantly stabilized the recombinant arginine deiminase producer. Homogenous preparations of recombinant arginine deiminase were obtained using anion-exchange and hydrophobic chromatography. The purified enzyme retained a specific activity of 30-34 U/mg for 12 months when stored at 4°C in 20 mM sodium phosphate buffer pH 7.2 containing 1 M NaCl.

  6. Improvement in The Function of Isolated Rat Pancreatic Islets through Reduction of Oxidative Stress Using Traditional Iranian Medicine

    PubMed Central

    Mahroui, Neda; Mirzaei, Sanaz; Siahpoosh, Zahra; D.4, Pharm.; Nili-Ahmadabadi, Amir; Mohammadirad, Azadeh; Baeeri, Maryam; Hajiaghaie, Reza; Abdollahi, Mohammad

    2014-01-01

    Objective Pancreatic islets have fewer antioxidant enzymes than other tissues and thus are vulnerable to oxidative stress. In the present study, the effects of nine specifically selected Iranian medical plants on the mitochondria function and survival of isolated rat islets were examined. Materials and Methods In this experimental study, following laparotomy, pancreases of rats were removed and the islets isolated and incubated in vitro for 24 hours. Logarithmic doses of plant materials were added to the islets and incubated for an additional 24 hours after which the viability of the cells and production of reactive oxygen species (ROS) were measured. Levels of insulin production in relation to static and stimulated glucose concen- trations were also determined. Results The tested compounds markedly increased survival of the islet cells, their mi- tochondrial activity, and insulin levels at the same time as reducing production of ROS. Greatest effects were observed in the following order: Peganum harmala, Glycyrrhiza glabra, Satureja hortensis, Rosmarinus officinalis, Teucrium scordium, Aloe vera, Zingiber officinale, Silybum marianum, and Hypericum perforatum at doses of 10, 103, 104, 10, 102, 102, 10-1, 10 and 103μgmL-1, respectively. Conclusion Based on these results, we suggest that pretreatment with these select- ed Iranian medical plants can improve the outcomes of pancreas transplants and grafts through the control of oxidative stress damage. PMID:24567945

  7. Improvement of mannitol lysine crystal violet brilliant green agar for the selective isolation of H2S-positive Salmonella.

    PubMed

    Kodaka, H; Mizuochi, S; Honda, T; Yamaguchi, K

    2000-12-01

    Mannitol lysine crystal violet brilliant green agar (MLCB) is widely used in Japan for Salmonella isolation because the medium has been commercially available. Colonies of Salmonella on MLCB appear colorless with black centers due to H2S gas production; however, most Citrobacter freundii also produce H2S gas. In order to distinguish H2S-positive Salmonella from C. freundii we have improved MLCB. To MLCB was added 1% lactose (L-MLCB). The relation for pH and black center colony formation was examined. The pH of MLCB and L-MLCB inoculated with Salmonella species was slightly acid after 7 h, but the pH of L-MLCB inoculated with C. freundii did not become acid for 24 h. The colony of C. freundii did not have a black center because the production of acid from lactose lowers the pH below 10 where it is needed for H2S to react with iron to produce black pigments. Of 99 Salmonella strains including 13 serotypes tested, all strains had the same colony morphologies on MLCB and L-MLCB. When MLCB and L-MLCB were evaluated with 36 C. freundii strains isolated from foods, only colonies on MLCB had black centers. We conclude that L-MLCB is useful for detection of nonlactose-fermenting, H2S-positive Salmonella in food samples.

  8. Ultra-High Pressure Homogenization improves oxidative stability and interfacial properties of soy protein isolate-stabilized emulsions.

    PubMed

    Fernandez-Avila, C; Trujillo, A J

    2016-10-15

    Ultra-High Pressure Homogenization (100-300MPa) has great potential for technological, microbiological and nutritional aspects of fluid processing. Its effect on the oxidative stability and interfacial properties of oil-in-water emulsions prepared with 4% (w/v) of soy protein isolate and soybean oil (10 and 20%, v/v) were studied and compared to emulsions treated by conventional homogenization (15MPa). Emulsions were characterized by particle size, emulsifying activity index, surface protein concentration at the interface and by transmission electron microscopy. Primary and secondary lipid oxidation products were evaluated in emulsions upon storage. Emulsions with 20% oil treated at 100 and 200MPa exhibited the most oxidative stability due to higher amount of oil and protein surface load at the interface. This manuscript addresses the improvement in oxidative stability in emulsions treated by UHPH when compared to conventional emulsions.

  9. AN EMERGENCY DEPARTMENT THAWED PLASMA PROTOCOL IS ASSOCIATED WITH REDCUTION IN BLOOD COMPONENT UTILIZATION AND IMPROVED SURVIVAL IN SEVERELY INJURED PATIENTS

    PubMed Central

    Radwan, Zayde A.; Bai, Yu; Matijevic, Nena; del Junco, Deborah J.; McCarthy, James J.; Wade, Charles E.; Holcomb, John B.; Cotton, Bryan A.

    2013-01-01

    Objectives To expedite delivery and transfusion of plasma through implementation of an emergency department (TP-ED) protocol. Design Retrospective cohort study Setting ACS-verified level 1 trauma center Patients Protocol was initiated February 2010, placing four units of AB plasma in the ED. All trauma patients admitted eight months before (TP-BB) and after implementing the TP-ED protocol. Patients were included if they received at least one unit of RBC and one unit of plasma in the first six hours after ED admission. Main Outcome Measures Primary outcome was time to first unit of plasma. Secondary outcomes included 24-hour blood use and 24-hour and 30-day mortality. Results 294 patients met study criteria (130 TP-BB, 164 TP-ED). While demographics were similar, TP-ED patients had greater anatomic injury (median ISS 18 vs. 25, p=0.018) and more physiological disturbances (median w-RTS 6.81 vs. 3.83, p=0.008). TP-ED had shorter time to first plasma transfusion (83 min vs. 42 min, p<0.001). TP-ED was associated with a reduction in 24-hour transfusion of RBC (p=0.036), plasma (p=0.044), and platelets (p<0.001). Logistic regression identified TP-ED as an independent predictor of decreased 30-day mortality (OR 0.43, 95% C.I. 0.194–0.956, p=0.038). Conclusions We demonstrated that implementation of a ED-TP protocol expedites transfusion of plasma to severely injured patients. This approach is associated with a reduction in overall blood product use and a 60% decreased odds in 30-day mortality. PMID:23426594

  10. More rigorous protocol adherence to intensive structured management improves blood pressure control in primary care: results from the Valsartan Intensified Primary carE Reduction of Blood Pressure study

    PubMed Central

    Stewart, Simon; Stocks, Nigel P.; Burrell, Louise M.; de Looze, Ferdinandus J.; Esterman, Adrian; Harris, Mark; Hung, Joseph; Swemmer, Carla H.; Kurstjens, Nicol P.; Jennings, Garry L.; Carrington, Melinda J.

    2014-01-01

    Objective: To examine protocol adherence to structured intensive management in the Valsartan Intensified Primary carE Reduction of Blood Pressure (VIPER-BP) study involving 119 primary care clinics and 1562 randomized participants. Methods: Prospective criteria for assessing adherence to treatment prescription, uptitration, and visit attendance at 6, 10, 14, and 18 weeks postrandomization were applied to 1038 intervention participants. Protocol adherence scores of 1–5 (least to most adherent) were compared to blood pressure (BP) control during 26 weeks of follow-up. Results: Mean age was 59.3 ± 12.0 years, 963 (62%) were men, and 1045 (67%) had longstanding hypertension. Clinic attendance dropped from 91 (week 6) to 83% (week 26) and pharmacological instructions were followed for 93% (baseline) to 61% at week 14 (uptitration failures commonly representing protocol deviations). Overall, 26-week BP levels and BP target attainment ranged from 132 ± 14/79 ± 9 and 51% to 141 ± 15/83 ± 11 mmHg and 19% in those participants subject to the highest (n = 270, 26%) versus least (n = 148, 14%) per protocol adherence, respectively; adjusted relative risk (RR) 1.22 per unit protocol adherence score, 95% confidence interval (CI) 1.15–1.31; for achieving BP target (P < 0.001). Participants with a per protocol score of 4 or 5 (512/1038, 49.3%) were 1.54-fold (95% CI 1.31–1.81; P < 0.001) more likely to achieve their individual BP target compared with usual care. Clinics equipped with a practice nurse significantly influenced protocol adherence (adjusted RR 1.20, 95% CI 1.06–1.37; P = 0.004) and individual BP control (RR 1.21, 95% CI 1.04–1.41; P = 0.015). Conclusion: There is considerable potential for structured care management to improve BP control in primary care, especially when optimally applied. PMID:24759125

  11. EFFECT OF MOBILITY ON PERFORMANCE OF WIRELESS AD-HOC NETWORK PROTOCOLS.

    SciTech Connect

    Barrett, C. L.; Drozda, M.; Marathe, M. V.; Marathe, A.

    2001-01-01

    We empirically study the effect of mobility on the performance of protocols designed for wireless adhoc networks. An important ohjective is to study the interaction of the Routing and MAC layer protocols under different mobility parameters. We use three basic mobility models: grid mobility model, random waypoint model, and exponential correlated random model. The performance of protocols was measured in terms of (i) latency, (ii) throughput, (iii) number of packels received, (iv) long term fairness and (v) number of control packets at the MAC layer level. Three different commonly studied routing protocols were used: AODV, DSR and LAR1. Similarly three well known MAC protocols were used: MACA, 802.1 1 and CSMA. The inair1 conclusion of our study include the following: 1. 'I'he performance of the: network varies widely with varying mobility models, packet injection rates and speeds; and can ba in fact characterized as fair to poor depending on the specific situation. Nevertheless, in general, it appears that the combination of AODV and 802.1 I is far better than other combination of routing and MAC protocols. 2. MAC layer protocols interact with routing layer protocols. This concept which is formalized using statistics implies that in general it is not meaningful to speak about a MAC or a routing protocol in isolation. Such an interaction leads to trade-offs between the amount of control packets generated by each layer. More interestingly, the results wise the possibility of improving the performance of a particular MAC layer protocol by using a cleverly designed routing protocol or vice-versa. 3. Routing prolocols with distributed knowledge about routes are more suitable for networks with mobility. This is seen by comparing the performance of AODV with DSR or LAR scheme 1. In DSli and IAR scheme 1, information about a computed path is being stored in the route query control packct. 4. MAC layer protocols have varying performance with varying mobility models. It is

  12. Effect of oral nitrates on pulse pressure and arterial elasticity in patients aged over 65 years with refractory isolated systolic hypertension: study protocol for a randomized controlled trial

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    Background Isolated systolic hypertension is a highly prevalent disease among the elderly. The little available evidence on the efficacy of nitrates for treating the disease is based on small experimental studies. Methods/design We performed a multicenter, randomized, double-blind, phase III, placebo-controlled trial in 154 patients aged over 65 years with refractory isolated systolic hypertension. Patients were randomized to placebo or 40 mg/day of extended-release isosorbide mononitrate added to standard therapy and titrated to 60 mg/day at week 6 if blood pressure exceeded 140/90 mmHg. The primary objective was to assess the effect on clinical pulse pressure of extended-release isosorbide mononitrate added to standard therapy in patients aged over 65 years with refractory isolated systolic hypertension after 3 months of treatment. The secondary objectives were as follows: to quantify the effect of adding the study drug on central blood pressure and vascular compliance using the augmentation index and pulse wave velocity; to evaluate the safety profile by recording adverse effects (frequency, type, severity) and the percentage of patients who had to withdraw from the trial because of adverse events; to quantify the percentage of patients who reach a clinical systolic blood pressure <140 mmHg or <130 mmHg measured by ambulatory blood pressure monitoring; and to quantify the change in pulse pressure measured by ambulatory blood pressure monitoring. Discussion Few clinical trials have been carried out to test the effect of oral nitrates on isolated systolic hypertension, even though these agents seem to be effective. Treatment with extended-release isosorbide mononitrate could improve control of systolic blood pressure without severe side effects, thus helping to reduce the morbidity and mortality of the disease. Trial registration EUDRACT Number: 2012-002988-10 PMID:24228894

  13. Radiologist participation in multi-disciplinary teams in breast cancer improves reflective practice, decision making and isolation.

    PubMed

    Alcantara, S B; Reed, W; Willis, K; Lee, W; Brennan, P; Lewis, S

    2014-09-01

    This study aims to explore Australian radiologists' experiences of participating in breast cancer multi-disciplinary team (MDT) meetings to identify enablers and barriers to participation as well their perception of confidence and patient care. Qualitative methods incorporating observation and interviews were used. Twenty-one breast cancer MDT meetings were observed across Sydney to study the dynamics of the meetings, the level of participation by radiologists and their most important interactions. Qualitative semi-structured interviews were conducted with 10 radiologists participating in these meetings regarding participation, educational opportunities and improvements to work practices. Radiologists' participation in breast cancer MDT meetings is influenced by the type of meeting they attend with higher levels of participation and a more dominant 'valued' role being evident in pre-interventional meetings. The key themes to emerge from the data include the importance of 'sharing experiences', the 'radiologist-pathologist relationship' and the value of 'continuing participation'. Radiologists believed their confidence in their clinical decision making increased when there was immediate feedback from pathologists. This study highlights the benefits of radiologists regularly participating in breast cancer MDT meetings in terms of continuing professional education resulting from collegial experiential learning. Radiologists' perceived patient care and workplace isolation were improved by sharing experiences with other cancer care colleagues.

  14. Study on biodegradation of Mazut by newly isolated strain Enterobacter cloacae BBRC10061: improving and kinetic investigation

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    Mazut as a source content of various hydrocarbons is hard to be degraded and its cracking could turn mazut into useful materials. Nevertheless degradation of mazut by routine methods is too expensive but application of indigenous microorganisms as biocatalysts could be effective and important to lower the costs and expand its consumption. Mazut biodegradation can be improved using various strategies; Therefore in this study newly isolated strain Enterobacter cloacae BBRC 10061 was used in a method of gradual addition of mazut into medium and its results were compared with simple addition method. To investigate degradation of mazut by BBRC 10061, influence of increase of mazut concentration was assayed based on gradual addition method. Also different kinetic models were used to evaluate kinetics of the process. Results showed that gradual addition method has been a beneficial technique for improvement of mazut degradation because bacterial induction to produce biosurfactant and essential enzymes for cracking mazut was higher during process. Although addition of more mazut increased the rate of biodegradation but percentage of degradation decreased. pH of medium decreased during biodegradation period while electric potential increased. Also the biodegradation kinetics was not fitted with the biokinetic models; therefore kinetics of biodegradation of mazut has to be studied by new models. PMID:23369455

  15. Inter-regional correlation of palaeoclimatic records for the Last Glacial Interglacial Transition: a protocol for improved precision recommended by the INTIMATE project group

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    John Lowe, J.; Hoek, Wim Z.; Intimate Group

    2001-05-01

    The remit of the INTIMATE project of the INQUA Palaeoclimate Commission is to synthesise marine, terrestrial and ice-core data for the North Atlantic region during the Last Glacial-Interglacial Transition (LGIT: ca 13-10 14C kyr BP; ca 15-11.5 ice-core kyr BP). A major problem, however, is the difficulty of effecting correlations at a temporal resolution that are adequate for defining 'leads' and 'lags' between the polar ice, terrestrial, marine, and atmospheric realms. The limitations of the dating and correlation methods currently employed are summarised, and new quality assurance protocols are proposed. These include recommendations on the contextual information that should accompany radiocarbon dates, procedures for radiocarbon calibration, the use of an event-stratigraphic approach in inter-regional correlations, and the more widespread use of time-parallel marker horizons (based on tephra layers, oxygen isotope stratigraphy, palaeomagnetic stratigraphy, and radiocarbon 'wiggle-matching') to underpin the geochronology and correlation of events during the LGIT. These protocols will be adopted by the INTIMATE project in future international, collaborative research and are recommended to other groups working on this important time period. Integration of Ice-core, Marine and Terrestrial Records (INTIMATE) is a core programme of the International Quaternary Union (INQUA) Palaeoclimate Commission.[INTIMATE @ http://www.geog.uu.nl/fg/palaeoclimate/intimate.

  16. Prior to Conception: The Role of an Acupuncture Protocol in Improving Women's Reproductive Functioning Assessed by a Pilot Pragmatic Randomised Controlled Trial.

    PubMed

    Cochrane, Suzanne; Smith, Caroline A; Possamai-Inesedy, Alphia; Bensoussan, Alan

    2016-01-01

    The global average of couples with fertility problems is 9%. Assisted reproductive technologies are often inaccessible. Evidence points to acupuncture offering an opportunity to promote natural fertility. This study asked whether providing a multiphasic fertility acupuncture protocol to women with sub/infertility would increase their awareness of fertility and achieve normalisation of their menstrual cycle compared with a lifestyle control. In a pragmatic randomised controlled trial sub/infertile women were offered an intervention of acupuncture and lifestyle modification or lifestyle modification only. There was a statistically significant increase in fertility awareness in the acupuncture group (86.4%, 19) compared to 40% (n = 8) of the lifestyle only participants (Relative Risk (RR) 2.38, 95% confidence interval (CI) of 1.25, 4.50), with an adjusted p value of 0.011. Changes in menstrual regularity were not statistically significant. There was no statistical difference in the pregnancy rate with seven women (adjusted p = 0.992) achieving pregnancy during the course of the study intervention. Those receiving the acupuncture conceived within an average of 5.5 weeks compared to 10.67 weeks for the lifestyle only group (p = 0.422). The acupuncture protocol tested influenced women who received it compared to women who used lifestyle modification alone: their fertility awareness and wellbeing increased, and those who conceived did so in half the time.

  17. Isolation, Culture, and Staining of Single Myofibers

    PubMed Central

    Gallot, Yann Simon; Hindi, Sajedah M.; Mann, Aman K.; Kumar, Ashok

    2016-01-01

    Adult skeletal muscle regeneration is orchestrated by a specialized population of adult stem cells called satellite cells, which are localized between the basal lamina and the plasma membrane of myofibers. The process of satellite cell-activation, proliferation, and subsequent differentiation that occurs during muscle regeneration can be recapitulated ex vivo by isolation of single myofibers from skeletal muscles and culturing them under suspension conditions. Here, we describe an improved protocol to evaluate ex vivo satellite cells activation through isolation of single myofibers from extensor digitorum longus (EDL) muscle of mice and culturing and staining of myofiber-associated satellite cells with the markers of self-renewal, proliferation, and differentiation. PMID:27819014

  18. Interpolation of recurrence and hashing entanglement distillation protocols

    SciTech Connect

    Vollbrecht, Karl Gerd H.; Verstraete, Frank

    2005-06-15

    We construct interesting entanglement distillation protocols by interpolating between the recurrence and hashing protocols. This leads to asymptotic two-way distillation protocols, resulting in an improvement of the distillation rate for all mixed Bell diagonal entangled states, even for the ones with very high fidelity. We also present a method for how entanglement-assisted distillation protocol can be converted into nonentanglement-assisted protocols with the same yield.

  19. General anesthesia improves contact force and reduces gap formation in pulmonary vein isolation: a comparison with conscious sedation.

    PubMed

    Chikata, Akio; Kato, Takeshi; Yaegashi, Takanori; Sakagami, Satoru; Kato, Chieko; Saeki, Takahiro; Kawai, Keiichi; Takashima, Shin-Ichiro; Murai, Hisayoshi; Usui, Soichiro; Furusho, Hiroshi; Kaneko, Shuichi; Takamura, Masayuki

    2017-03-04

    Compared to conscious sedation (CS), the use of general anesthesia (GA) in pulmonary vein isolation (PVI) is associated with a lower recurrence rate of atrial fibrillation (AF). GA may improve catheter stability and mapping system accuracy compared to CS, but its influence on contact force (CF) parameters during ipsilateral PVI has not previously been investigated. The study population comprised 176 consecutive patients (107 in GA group and 69 in CS group) with AF who underwent their first PVI procedure. We retrospectively assessed CF parameters, force-time integral (FTI), FTI/wall thickness during anatomical ipsilateral PVI and long-term outcome after ablation. Complete PVI with single continuous circular lesions around the ipsilateral PVs was achieved in 54 patients (50.5%) in the GA group but only 24 patients (34.8%) in the CS group (P = 0.04). The distribution of gaps did not differ between the groups. All CF parameters were significantly higher in the GA group than in the CS group (average CF: 19.4 ± 8.7 vs. 16.7 ± 7.7 g, P < 0.0001; FTI: 399.0 ± 262.5 vs. 293.9 ± 193.4 gs, P < 0.0001; FTI/wall thickness: 155.5 ± 106.1 vs. 115.7 ± 85.5 gs, P < 0.0001). GA was associated with lower AF recurrence rate in patients with paroxysmal AF but not with persistent AF. Compared with CS, GA improves CF parameters, FTI and FTI/wall thickness, and reduced gap formation after ipsilateral PVI.

  20. Electrophysiological Characterization of Ts6 and Ts7, K+ Channel Toxins Isolated through an Improved Tityus serrulatus Venom Purification Procedure

    PubMed Central

    Cerni, Felipe A.; Pucca, Manuela B.; Peigneur, Steve; Cremonez, Caroline M.; Bordon, Karla C. F.; Tytgat, Jan; Arantes, Eliane C.

    2014-01-01

    In Brazil, Tityus serrulatus (Ts) is the species responsible for most of the scorpion related accidents. Among the Ts toxins, the neurotoxins with action on potassium channels (α-KTx) present high interest, due to their effect in the envenoming process and the ion channel specificity they display. The α-KTx toxins family is the most relevant because its toxins can be used as therapeutic tools for specific target cells. The improved isolation method provided toxins with high resolution, obtaining pure Ts6 and Ts7 in two chromatographic steps. The effects of Ts6 and Ts7 toxins were evaluated in 14 different types of potassium channels using the voltage-clamp technique with two-microelectrodes. Ts6 toxin shows high affinity for Kv1.2, Kv1.3 and Shaker IR, blocking these channels in low concentrations. Moreover, Ts6 blocks the Kv1.3 channel in picomolar concentrations with an IC50 of 0.55 nM and therefore could be of valuable assistance to further designing immunosuppressive therapeutics. Ts7 toxin blocks multiple subtypes channels, showing low selectivity among the channels analyzed. This work also stands out in its attempt to elucidate the residues important for interacting with each channel and, in the near future, to model a desired drug. PMID:24590385

  1. Kaempferol and quercetin isolated from Euonymus alatus improve glucose uptake of 3T3-L1 cells without adipogenesis activity.

    PubMed

    Fang, Xian-Kang; Gao, Jie; Zhu, Dan-Ni

    2008-03-12

    Euonymus alatus as a folk medicine in China has been clinically used to treat type 2 diabetes for many years, and also exerts beneficial effects on hyperglycemia of diabetic animals. Our previous studies have isolated kaempferol and quercetin from the extract of E. alatus. In the present study, we investigated the possible mechanism of antidiabetic activity of these compounds. Kaempferol and quercetin could significantly improve insulin-stimulated glucose uptake in mature 3T3-L1 adipocytes. In addition, further experiments showed that kaempferol and quercetin served as weak partial agonists in the peroxisome proliferator-agonist receptor gamma (PPARgamma) reporter gene assay. Kaempferol and quercetin could not induce differentiation of 3T3-L1 preadipocytes as traditional PPARgamma agonist. When added together with the PPARgamma agonist rosiglitazone to 3T3-L1 preadipocytes, they could inhibit 3T3-L1 differentiation in a dose-dependent manner. Competitive ligand-binding assay confirmed that kaempferol and quercetin could compete with rosiglitazone at the same binding pocket site as PPARgamma. Kaempferol and quercetin showed significant inhibitory effects on NO production in response to lipopolysaccharide treatment in macrophage cells in which the PPARgamma was overexpressed; rosiglitazone was less potent than kaempferol and quercetin. These observations suggest that kaempferol and quercetin potentially act at multiple targets to ameliorate hyperglycemia, including by acting as partial agonists of PPARgamma.

  2. Improvement of interfacial interactions using natural polyphenol-inspired tannic acid-coated nanoclay enhancement of soy protein isolate biofilms

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wang, Zhong; Kang, Haijiao; Zhang, Wei; Zhang, Shifeng; Li, Jianzhang

    2017-04-01

    In this study, a novel and economic surface modification technique for montmorillonite (MMT) nanosheets, a biocompatible coupling cross-linking agent, was developed on an attempt at improving the interfacial adhesion with soy protein isolate (SPI) matrix. Inspired by natural polyphenol, the "green dip-coating" method using tannic acid (TA) to surface-modify MMT (TA@MMT). SPI nanocomposite films modified with MMT or TA@MMT, as well as the control ones, were prepared via the casting method. The TA layer was successfully coated on the MMT surface through the (FeIII) ions coordination chemistry and the synthetic samples were characterized by the Fourier transform infrared (FT-IR) spectroscopy, X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy (XPS), X-ray diffraction (XRD), thermogravimetric analysis (TGA), atomic force microscopy (AFM), and transmission electron microscopy (TEM). The compatibility and interfacial interactions between modified MMT and SPI matrix were greatly enhanced by the TA-FeIII coating on the MMT surface. The mechanical properties, water resistance, and thermal stability of the resultant biofilm were increased accordingly. Compared with that of the unmodified SPI film, the tensile strength of the nanocomposite films modified by the green dip-coating was increased by 113.3%. These SPI-based nanocomposite films showed the favorable potential in terms of food packing applications due to their efficient barriers to water vapor and UV and/or visible light.

  3. Massive transfusion and massive transfusion protocol

    PubMed Central

    Patil, Vijaya; Shetmahajan, Madhavi

    2014-01-01

    Haemorrhage remains a major cause of potentially preventable deaths. Rapid transfusion of large volumes of blood products is required in patients with haemorrhagic shock which may lead to a unique set of complications. Recently, protocol based management of these patients using massive transfusion protocol have shown improved outcomes. This section discusses in detail both management and complications of massive blood transfusion. PMID:25535421

  4. Alternative Strategies to Improve and Expand the Delivery of Vocational Education in Small, Rural, and/or Isolated Secondary Schools in Hawaii.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Hawaii State Dept. of Education, Honolulu. Office of the Director for Vocational Education.

    Intended for administrators of schools within the Hawaii Department of Education, this document provides descriptions of 34 alternative strategies implemented by small, rural, and/or isolated secondary schools across the nation to improve the quality of their vocational programs. Introductory materials discuss the document's purpose, the need for…

  5. Can the Isolated-Elements Strategy Be Improved by Targeting Points of High Cognitive Load for Additional Practice?

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Ayres, Paul

    2013-01-01

    Reducing problem complexity by isolating elements has been shown to be an effective instructional strategy. Novices, in particular, benefit from learning from worked examples that contain partially interacting elements rather than worked examples that provide full interacting elements. This study investigated whether the isolating-elements…

  6. A Modified Protocol with Improved Detection Rate for Mis-Matched Donor HLA from Low Quantities of DNA in Urine Samples from Kidney Graft Recipients

    PubMed Central

    Kwok, Janette; Choi, Leo C. W.; Ho, Jenny C. Y.; Chan, Gavin S. W.; Mok, Maggie M. Y.; Lam, Man-Fei; Chak, Wai-Leung; Cheuk, Au; Chau, Ka-Foon; Tong, Matthew; Chan, Kwok-Wah; Chan, Tak-Mao

    2016-01-01

    Background Urine from kidney transplant recipient has proven to be a viable source for donor DNA. However, an optimized protocol would be required to determine mis-matched donor HLA specificities in view of the scarcity of DNA obtained in some cases. Methods In this study, fresh early morning urine specimens were obtained from 155 kidney transplant recipients with known donor HLA phenotype. DNA was extracted and typing of HLA-A, B and DRB1 loci by polymerase chain reaction-specific sequence primers was performed using tailor-made condition according to the concentration of extracted DNA. Results HLA typing of DNA extracted from urine revealed both recipient and donor HLA phenotypes, allowing the deduction of the unknown donor HLA and hence the degree of HLA mis-match. By adopting the modified procedures, mis-matched donor HLA phenotypes were successfully deduced in all of 35 tested urine samples at DNA quantities spanning the range of 620–24,000 ng. Conclusions This urine-based method offers a promising and reliable non-invasive means for the identification of mis-matched donor HLA antigens in kidney transplant recipients with unknown donor HLA phenotype or otherwise inadequate donor information. PMID:27861530

  7. Nifedipine improves blood flow and oxygen supply, but not steady-state oxygenation of tumours in perfusion pressure-controlled isolated limb perfusion.

    PubMed

    Thews, O; Hummel, M; Kelleher, D K; Lecher, B; Vaupel, P

    2002-12-02

    Isolated limb perfusion allows the direct application of therapeutic agents to a tumour-bearing extremity. The present study investigated whether the dihydropyridine-type Ca(2+)-channel blocker nifedipine could improve blood flow and oxygenation status of experimental tumours during isolated limb perfusion. Perfusion was performed by cannulation of the femoral artery and vein in rats bearing DS-sarcoma on the hind foot dorsum. Perfusion rate was adjusted to maintain a perfusion pressure of 100-140 mmHg throughout the experiment. Following equilibration, nifedipine was continuously infused for 30 min (8.3 microg min(-1) kg(-1) BW). During constant-pressure isolated limb perfusion, nifedipine can significantly increase perfusion rate (+100%) and RBC flux (+60%) through experimental leg tumours. "Steal phenomena" in favour of the surrounding normal tissue and oedema formation were not observed. Despite the increased oxygen availability (+63%) seen upon application of this calcium channel blocker, nifedipine does not result in a substantial reduction of tumour hypoxia, most probably due to an increase in O(2) uptake with rising O(2) supply to the tumour-bearing hind limb. Nifedipine application during isolated limb perfusion can enhance tumour microcirculation and may therefore promote the delivery (pharmacokinetics) of anti-cancer drugs to the tumour and by this improve the efficacy of pressure-controlled isolated limb perfusion.

  8. An improved method for the isolation of rat alveolar type II lung cells: Use in the Comet assay to determine DNA damage induced by cigarette smoke.

    PubMed

    Dalrymple, Annette; Ordoñez, Patricia; Thorne, David; Dillon, Debbie; Meredith, Clive

    2015-06-01

    Smoking is a cause of serious diseases, including lung cancer, emphysema, chronic bronchitis and heart disease. DNA damage is thought to be one of the mechanisms by which cigarette smoke (CS) initiates disease in the lung. Indeed, CS induced DNA damage can be measured in vitro and in vivo. The potential of the Comet assay to measure DNA damage in isolated rat lung alveolar type II epithelial cells (AEC II) was explored as a means to include a genotoxicity end-point in rodent sub-chronic inhalation studies. In this study, published AEC II isolation methods were improved to yield viable cells suitable for use in the Comet assay. The improved method reduced the level of basal DNA damage and DNA repair in isolated AEC II. CS induced DNA damage could also be quantified in isolated cells following a single or 5 days CS exposure. In conclusion, the Comet assay has the potential to determine CS or other aerosol induced DNA damage in AEC II isolated from rodents used in sub-chronic inhalation studies.

  9. Improvement of methyl orange dye biotreatment by a novel isolated strain, Aeromonas veronii GRI, by SPB1 biosurfactant addition.

    PubMed

    Mnif, Inès; Maktouf, Sameh; Fendri, Raouia; Kriaa, Mouna; Ellouze, Semia; Ghribi, Dhouha

    2016-01-01

    Aeromonas veronii GRI (KF964486), isolated from acclimated textile effluent after selective enrichment on azo dye, was assessed for methyl orange biodegradation potency. Results suggested the potential of this bacterium for use in effective treatment of azo-dye-contaminated wastewaters under static conditions at neutral and alkaline pH value, characteristic of typical textile effluents. The strain could tolerate higher doses of dyes as it was able to decolorize up to 1000 mg/l. When used as microbial surfactant to enhance methyl orange biodecolorization, Bacillus subtilis SPB1-derived lipopeptide accelerated the decolorization rate and maximized slightly the decolorization efficiency at an optimal concentration of about 0.025%. In order to enhance the process efficiency, a Taguchi design was conducted. Phytotoxicity bioassay using sesame and radish seeds were carried out to assess the biotreatment effectiveness. The bacterium was able to effectively decolorize the azo dye when inoculated with an initial optical density of about 0.5 with 0.25% sucrose, 0.125% yeast extract, 0.01% SPB1 biosurfactant, and when conducting an agitation phase of about 24 h after static incubation. Germination potency showed an increase toward the nonoptimized conditions indicating an improvement of the biotreatment. When comparing with synthetic surfactants, a drastic decrease and an inhibition of orange methyl decolorization were observed in the presence of CTAB and SDS. The nonionic surfactant Tween 80 had a positive effect on methyl orange biodecolorization. Also, studies ensured that methyl orange removal by this strain could be due to endocellular enzymatic activities. To conclude, the addition of SPB1 bioemulsifier reduced energy costs by reducing effective decolorization period, biosurfactant stimulated bacterial decolorization method may provide highly efficient, inexpensive, and time-saving procedure in treatment of textile effluents.

  10. Improving swallowing outcomes in patients with head and neck cancer using a theory-based pretreatment swallowing intervention package: protocol for a randomised feasibility study

    PubMed Central

    Smith, Christina H; Barratt, Helen; Taylor, Stuart A

    2017-01-01

    Introduction The incidence of head and neck cancer (HNC) in the UK is rising, with an average of 31 people diagnosed daily. Patients affected by HNC suffer significant short-term and long-term post-treatment morbidity as a result of dysphagia, which affects daily functioning and quality of life (QOL). Pretreatment swallowing exercises may provide additional benefit over standard rehabilitation in managing dysphagia after primary HNC treatments, but uncertainty about their effectiveness persists. This study was preceded by an intervention development phase to produce an optimised swallowing intervention package (SIP). The aim of the current study is to assess the feasibility of this new intervention and research processes within a National Health Service (NHS) setting. Method and analysis A two-arm non-blinded randomised controlled feasibility study will be carried out at one tertiary referral NHS centre providing specialist services in HNC. Patients newly diagnosed with stage III and IV disease undergoing planned surgery and/or chemoradiation treatments will be eligible. The SIP will be delivered pre treatment, and a range of swallowing-related and QOL measures will be collected at baseline, 1, 3 and 6 months post-treatment. Outcomes will test the feasibility of a future randomised controlled trial (RCT), detailing rate of recruitment and patient acceptance to participation and randomisation. Salient information relating to protocol implementation will be collated and study material such as the case report form will be tested. A range of candidate outcome measures will be examined for suitability in a larger RCT. Ethics and dissemination Ethical approval was obtained from an NHS Research Ethics Committee. Findings will be published open access in a peer-reviewed journal, and presented at relevant conferences and research meetings. Trial registration number ISRCTN40215425; Pre-results. PMID:28348190

  11. Alternative parallel ring protocols

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Mukkamala, R.; Foudriat, E. C.; Maly, Kurt J.; Kale, V.

    1990-01-01

    Communication protocols are know to influence the utilization and performance of communication network. The effect of two token ring protocols on a gigabit network with multiple ring structure is investigated. In the first protocol, a mode sends at most one message on receiving a token. In the second protocol, a mode sends all the waiting messages when a token is received. The behavior of these protocols is shown to be highly dependent on the number of rings as well as the load in the network.

  12. Comparison of seven protocols to identify fecal contamination sources using Escherichia coli

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Stoeckel, D.M.; Mathes, M.V.; Hyer, K.E.; Hagedorn, C.; Kator, H.; Lukasik, J.; O'Brien, T. L.; Fenger, T.W.; Samadpour, M.; Strickler, K.M.; Wiggins, B.A.

    2004-01-01

    Microbial source tracking (MST) uses various approaches to classify fecal-indicator microorganisms to source hosts. Reproducibility, accuracy, and robustness of seven phenotypic and genotypic MST protocols were evaluated by use of Escherichia coli from an eight-host library of known-source isolates and a separate, blinded challenge library. In reproducibility tests, measuring each protocol's ability to reclassify blinded replicates, only one (pulsed-field gel electrophoresis; PFGE) correctly classified all test replicates to host species; three protocols classified 48-62% correctly, and the remaining three classified fewer than 25% correctly. In accuracy tests, measuring each protocol's ability to correctly classify new isolates, ribotyping with EcoRI and PvuII approached 100% correct classification but only 6% of isolates were classified; four of the other six protocols (antibiotic resistance analysis, PFGE, and two repetitive-element PCR protocols) achieved better than random accuracy rates when 30-100% of challenge isolates were classified. In robustness tests, measuring each protocol's ability to recognize isolates from nonlibrary hosts, three protocols correctly classified 33-100% of isolates as "unknown origin," whereas four protocols classified all isolates to a source category. A relevance test, summarizing interpretations for a hypothetical water sample containing 30 challenge isolates, indicated that false-positive classifications would hinder interpretations for most protocols. Study results indicate that more representation in known-source libraries and better classification accuracy would be needed before field application. Thorough reliability assessment of classification results is crucial before and during application of MST protocols.

  13. Improving advance care planning for English-speaking and Spanish-speaking older adults: study protocol for the PREPARE randomised controlled trial

    PubMed Central

    Sudore, Rebecca L; Barnes, Deborah E; Le, Gem M; Ramos, Roberto; Osua, Stacy J; Richardson, Sarah A; Boscardin, John; Schillinger, Dean

    2016-01-01

    Introduction Advance care planning (ACP) is a process that allows patients to identify their goals for medical care. Traditionally, ACP has focused on completing advance directives; however, we have expanded the ACP paradigm to also prepare patients to communicate their wishes and make informed decisions. To this end, we created an ACP website called PREPARE (http://www.prepareforyourcare.org) to prepare diverse English-speaking and Spanish-speaking older adults for medical decision-making. Here, we describe the study protocol for a randomised controlled efficacy trial of PREPARE in a safety-net setting. The goal is to determine the efficacy of PREPARE to engage diverse English-speaking and Spanish-speaking older adults in a full spectrum of ACP behaviours. Methods and analysis We include English-speaking and Spanish-speaking adults from an urban public hospital who are ≥55 years old, have ≥2 chronic medical conditions and have seen a primary care physician ≥2 times in the last year. Participants are randomised to the PREPARE intervention (review PREPARE and an easy-to-read advance directive) or the control arm (only the easy-to-read advance directive). The primary outcome is documentation of an advance directive and/or ACP discussion. Secondary outcomes include ACP behaviour change processes measured with validated surveys (eg, self-efficacy, readiness) and a broad range of ACP actions (eg, choosing a surrogate, identifying goals for care, discussing ACP with clinicians and/or surrogates). Using blinded outcome ascertainment, outcomes will be measured at 1 week and at 3, 6 and 12 months, and compared between study arms using mixed-effects logistic regression and mixed-effects linear, Poisson or negative binomial regression. Ethics and dissemination This study has been approved by the appropriate Institutional Review Boards and is guided by input from patient and clinical advisory boards and a data safety monitoring board. The results of this study will

  14. A protocol for improving mapping and assessing of seagrass abundance along the West Central Coast of Florida using Landsat TM and EO-1 ALI/Hyperion images

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pu, Ruiliang; Bell, Susan

    2013-09-01

    Seagrass habitats are characteristic features of shallow waters worldwide and provide a variety of ecosystem functions. Remote sensing techniques can help collect spatial and temporal information about seagrass resources. In this study, we evaluate a protocol that utilizes image optimization algorithms followed by atmospheric and sunglint corrections to the three satellite sensors [Landsat 5 Thematic Mapper (TM), Earth Observing-1 (EO-1) Advanced Land Imager (ALI) and Hyperion (HYP)] and a fuzzy synthetic evaluation technique to map and assess seagrass abundance in Pinellas County, FL, USA. After image preprocessed with image optimization algorithms and atmospheric and sunglint correction approaches, the three sensors' data were used to classify the submerged aquatic vegetation cover (%SAV cover) into 5 classes with a maximum likelihood classifier. Based on three biological metrics [%SAV, leaf area index (LAI), and Biomass] measured from the field, nine multiple regression models were developed for estimating the three biometrics with spectral variables derived from the three sensors' data. Then, five membership maps were created with the three biometrics along with two environmental factors (water depth and distance-to-shoreline). Finally, seagrass abundance maps were produced by using a fuzzy synthetic evaluation technique and five membership maps. The experimental results indicate that the HYP sensor produced the best results of the 5-class classification of %SAV cover (overall accuracy = 87% and Kappa = 0.83 vs. 82% and 0.77 by ALI and 79% and 0.73 by TM) and better multiple regression models for estimating the three biometrics (R2 = 0.66, 0.62 and 0.61 for %SAV, LAI and Biomass vs. 0.62, 0.61 and 0.55 by ALI and 0.58, 0.56 and 0.52 by TM) for creating seagrass abundance maps along with two environmental factors. Combined our results demonstrate that the image optimization algorithms and the fuzzy synthetic evaluation technique were effective in mapping

  15. Improving implementation of evidence-based practice in mental health service delivery: protocol for a cluster randomised quasi-experimental investigation of staff-focused values interventions

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    files and staff work samples are reviewed for each condition to determine the impact of implementation. Self-determination theory and theories of organisational change are used to interpret the data. Discussion The research adds to the current knowledge base related to worker motivation and uptake of workplace practice. It describes a structured protocol that aims to enhance worker autonomy for imposed workplace practices. The research will inform how best to measure and conceptualise transfer. These findings will apply particularly to contexts where individuals are not ‘volunteers’ in requisite change processes. Trial registration ACTRN: ACTRN12613000353796. PMID:23819816

  16. A multi-centre randomised controlled trial of rehabilitation aimed at improving outdoor mobility for people after stroke: Study protocol for a randomised controlled trial

    PubMed Central

    2012-01-01

    . Discussion This study protocol describes a pragmatic randomised controlled trial that will hopefully provide robust evidence of the benefit of outdoor mobility interventions after stroke for clinicians working in the community. The results will be available towards the end of 2012. Trial registration ISRCTN58683841 PMID:22721452

  17. 'Communicate to vaccinate' (COMMVAC). building evidence for improving communication about childhood vaccinations in low- and middle-income countries: protocol for a programme of research

    PubMed Central

    2011-01-01

    Background Effective provider-parent communication can improve childhood vaccination uptake and strengthen immunisation services in low- and middle-income countries (LMICs). Building capacity to improve communication strategies has been neglected. Rigorous research exists but is not readily found or applicable to LMICs, making it difficult for policy makers to use it to inform vaccination policies and practice. The aim of this project is to build research knowledge and capacity to use evidence-based strategies for improving communication about childhood vaccinations with parents and communities in LMICs. Methods and design This project is a mixed methods study with six sub-studies. In sub-study one, we will develop a systematic map of provider-parent communication interventions for childhood vaccinations by screening and extracting data from relevant literature. This map will inform sub-study two, in which we will develop a taxonomy of interventions to improve provider-parent communication around childhood vaccination. In sub-study three, the taxonomy will be populated with trial citations to create an evidence map, which will also identify how evidence is linked to communication barriers regarding vaccination. In the project's fourth sub-study, we will present the interventions map, taxonomy, and evidence map to international stakeholders to identify high-priority topics for systematic reviews of interventions to improve parent-provider communication for childhood vaccination. We will produce systematic reviews of the effects of high-priority interventions in the fifth sub-study. In the sixth and final sub-study of the project, evidence from the systematic reviews will be translated into accessible formats and messages for dissemination to LMICs. Discussion This project combines evidence mapping, conceptual and taxonomy development, priority setting, systematic reviews, and knowledge transfer. It will build and share concepts, terms, evidence, and resources to aid

  18. Licklider Transmission Protocol Implementation

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Burleigh, Scott C.; Krupiarz, Chris

    2011-01-01

    This software is an implementation of the Licklider Transmission Protocol (LTP), a communications protocol intended to support the Bundle Protocol in Delay-Tolerant Network (DTN) operations. LTP is designed to provide retransmission-based reliability over links characterized by extremely long message round-trip times and/or frequent interruptions in connectivity. Communication in interplanetary space is the most prominent example of this sort of environment, and LTP is principally aimed at supporting long-haul reliable transmission over deep-space RF links. Like any reliable transport service employing ARQ (Automatic Repeat re-Quests), LTP is stateful. In order to assure the reception of a block of data it has sent, LTP must retain for possible retransmission all portions of that block which might not have been received yet. In order to do so, it must keep track of which portions of the block are known to have been received so far, and which are not, together with any additional information needed for purposes of retransmitting part, or all, of the block. Long round-trip times mean substantial delay between the transmission of a block of data and the reception of an acknowledgement from the block s destination, signaling arrival of the block. If LTP postponed transmission of additional blocks of data until it received acknowledgement of the arrival of all prior blocks, valuable opportunities to use what little deep space transmission bandwidth is available would be forever lost. For this reason, LTP is based in part on a notion of massive state retention. Any number of requested transmission conversations (sessions) may be concurrently in flight at various displacements along the link between two LTP engines, and the LTP engines must necessarily retain transmission status and retransmission resources for all of them. Moreover, if any of the data of a given block are lost en route, it will be necessary to retain the state of that transmission during an additional

  19. Computerised lung sound analysis to improve the specificity of paediatric pneumonia diagnosis in resource-poor settings: protocol and methods for an observational study

    PubMed Central

    Gilman, Robert H; Tielsch, James M; Steinhoff, Mark; Figueroa, Dante; Rodriguez, Shalim; Caffo, Brian; Tracey, Brian; Elhilali, Mounya; West, James; Checkley, William

    2012-01-01

    Introduction WHO case management algorithm for paediatric pneumonia relies solely on symptoms of shortness of breath or cough and tachypnoea for treatment and has poor diagnostic specificity, tends to increase antibiotic resistance. Alternatives, including oxygen saturation measurement, chest ultrasound and chest auscultation, exist but with potential disadvantages. Electronic auscultation has potential for improved detection of paediatric pneumonia but has yet to be standardised. The authors aim to investigate the use of electronic auscultation to improve the specificity of the current WHO algorithm in developing countries. Methods This study is designed to test the hypothesis that pulmonary pathology can be differentiated from normal using computerised lung sound analysis (CLSA). The authors will record lung sounds from 600 children aged ≤5 years, 100 each with consolidative pneumonia, diffuse interstitial pneumonia, asthma, bronchiolitis, upper respiratory infections and normal lungs at a children's hospital in Lima, Peru. The authors will compare CLSA with the WHO algorithm and other detection approaches, including physical exam findings, chest ultrasound and microbiologic testing to construct an improved algorithm for pneumonia diagnosis. Discussion This study will develop standardised methods for electronic auscultation and chest ultrasound and compare their utility for detection of pneumonia to standard approaches. Utilising signal processing techniques, the authors aim to characterise lung sounds and through machine learning, develop a classification system to distinguish pathologic sounds. Data will allow a better understanding of the benefits and limitations of novel diagnostic techniques in paediatric pneumonia. PMID:22307098

  20. Evaluation and improvement of a single nucleotide polymorphism-based PCR assay for rapid differentiation of live attenuated vaccine strains from field isolates of Erysipelothrix rhusiopathiae.

    PubMed

    Zhu, Weifeng; Li, Jingtao; Wang, Ya; Kang, Chao; Jin, Meilin; Chen, Huanchun

    2016-11-01

    A single nucleotide polymorphism-based PCR assay has been developed to differentiate the attenuated vaccine strain used in Japan from field isolates of Erysipelothrix rhusiopathiae found in pigs. However, this assay has been evaluated with only Japanese strains and isolates; therefore, it is unknown whether it could be used in other countries with E. rhusiopathiae strains and isolates of different genetic backgrounds. In our study, the PCR assay was evaluated using Chinese E. rhusiopathiae vaccine strains and field isolates. The PCR assay was able to differentiate the attenuated vaccine strains from the field isolates of E. rhusiopathiae in China but with a pattern different from that observed in Japan (only a single nucleotide polymorphism was detected in the Chinese vaccine strains compared with 5 in the Japanese vaccine strains). Importantly, either a DNA polymerase without 3' to 5' exonuclease activity or an exo(+) polymerase with an antibody inhibiting the proofreading activity was required. In conclusion, after evaluation and improvement, this fast differentiation assay can be extended from Japan to China.

  1. Applying the RE-AIM framework to the Alberta's Caring for Diabetes Project: a protocol for a comprehensive evaluation of primary care quality improvement interventions

    PubMed Central

    Wozniak, Lisa; Rees, Sandra; Soprovich, Allison; Al Sayah, Fatima; Johnson, Steven T; Majumdar, Sumit R; Johnson, Jeffrey A

    2012-01-01

    Introduction Diabetes represents a major public health and health system burden. As part of the Alberta's Caring for Diabetes (ABCD) Project, two quality-improvement interventions are being piloted in four Primary Care Networks in Alberta. Gaps between health research, policy and practice have been documented and the need to evaluate the impact of public health interventions in real-world settings to inform decision-making and clinical practice is paramount. In this article, we describe the application of the RE-AIM framework to evaluate the interventions beyond effectiveness. Methods and analysis Two quality-improvement interventions were implemented, based on previously proven effective models of care and are directed at improving the physical and mental health of patients with type-2 diabetes. Our goal is to adapt and apply the RE-AIM framework, using a mixed-methods approach, to understand the impact of the interventions to inform policy and clinical decision-making. We present the proposed measures, data sources and data management and analysis strategies used to evaluate the interventions by RE-AIM dimension. Ethics and dissemination Ethics approval for the ABCD Project has been granted from the Health Research Ethics Board (HREB #PRO00012663) at the University of Alberta. The RE-AIM framework will be used to structure our dissemination activities by dimension. Results It will be presented at relevant conferences and prepared for publication in peer-reviewed journals. Various products, such as presentations, briefing reports and webinars, will be developed to inform key stakeholders of the findings. Presentation of findings by RE-AIM dimension will facilitate discussion regarding the public health impact of the two interventions within the primary care context of Alberta and lessons learned to be used in programme planning and care delivery for patients with type-2 diabetes. It will also promote the application of evaluation models to better assess the impact

  2. Study protocol for a randomized, controlled trial comparing the efficacy of two educational interventions to improve inhalation techniques in patients with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD): TIEPOC Study

    PubMed Central

    Leiva-Fernández, José; Leiva-Fernández, Francisca; Vázquez-Alarcón, Rubén L; García-Ruiz, Antonio; Prados-Torres, Daniel; Barnestein-Fonseca, Pilar

    2014-01-01

    Background: An appropriate inhalation technique and adherence to treatment are both critical determinants of the success of chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) management. We have observed that up to 75% of patients do not use a successful inhalation technique. Knowledge evaluation and frequent reassessment of inhaler use, together with education of patients and healthcare professionals, can significantly improve the benefits that patients with COPD will derive from inhaler therapy. The objective of this study is to test the efficacy of two educational interventions to improve inhalation techniques in patients with COPD. Methods: Multicenter randomized controlled trial with 296 patients diagnosed with COPD selected by a non-probabilistic method of sampling from seven Spanish Primary Care Centers. The patients will be divided into three groups by block randomization. The three groups are: 1) control; 2) Intervention A; and 3) Intervention B. The control group will comprise patients with no explanations or written information; the Intervention A group will comprise patients to whom we give written information only; and the Intervention B group will comprise patients to whom we give written information plus instructor training. Every patient in each group will be visited four times during the year of the study at the health centers. Discussion: Our hypothesis is that the application of educational interventions (A or B) in patients with COPD who use inhaler therapy will increase the number of patients who perform a correct inhalation technique by at least 25%. We will evaluate the effectiveness of these interventions on patient inhalation technique improvement, where feasible within the context of clinical practice. PMID:24991223

  3. Functionality and feedback: a protocol for a realist synthesis of the collation, interpretation and utilisation of PROMs data to improve patient care

    PubMed Central

    Greenhalgh, Joanne; Pawson, Ray; Wright, Judy; Black, Nick; Valderas, Jose Maria; Meads, David; Gibbons, Elizabeth; Wood, Laurence; Wood, Charlotte; Mills, Chris; Dalkin, Sonia

    2014-01-01

    Introduction The feedback and public reporting of PROMs data aims to improve the quality of care provided to patients. Existing systematic reviews have found it difficult to draw overall conclusions about the effectiveness of PROMs feedback. We aim to execute a realist synthesis of the evidence to understand by what means and in what circumstances the feedback of PROMs data leads to the intended service improvements. Methods and analysis Realist synthesis involves (stage 1) identifying the ideas, assumptions or ‘programme theories’ which explain how PROMs feedback is supposed to work and in what circumstances and then (stage 2) reviewing the evidence to determine the extent to which these expectations are met in practice. For stage 1, six provisional ‘functions’ of PROMs feedback have been identified to structure our review (screening, monitoring, patient involvement, demand management, quality improvement and patient choice). For each function, we will identify the different programme theories that underlie these different goals and develop a logical map of the respective implementation processes. In stage 2, we will identify studies that will provide empirical tests of each component of the programme theories to evaluate the circumstances in which the potential obstacles can be overcome and whether and how the unintended consequences of PROMs feedback arise. We will synthesise this evidence to (1) identify the implementation processes which support or constrain the successful collation, interpretation and utilisation of PROMs data; (2) identify the implementation processes through which the unintended consequences of PROMs data arise and those where they can be avoided. Ethics and dissemination The study will not require NHS ethics approval. We have secured ethical approval for the study from the University of Leeds (LTSSP-019). We will disseminate the findings of the review through a briefing paper and dissemination event for National Health Service

  4. Feasibility intervention trial of two types of improved cookstoves in three resource-limited settings: study protocol for a randomized controlled trial

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    Background Exposure to biomass fuel smoke is one of the leading risk factors for disease burden worldwide. International campaigns are currently promoting the widespread adoption of improved cookstoves in resource-limited settings, yet little is known about the cultural and social barriers to successful improved cookstove adoption and how these barriers affect environmental exposures and health outcomes. Design We plan to conduct a one-year crossover, feasibility intervention trial in three resource-limited settings (Kenya, Nepal and Peru). We will enroll 40 to 46 female primary cooks aged 20 to 49 years in each site (total 120 to 138). Methods At baseline, we will collect information on sociodemographic characteristics and cooking practices, and measure respiratory health and blood pressure for all participating women. An initial observational period of four months while households use their traditional, open-fire design cookstoves will take place prior to randomization. All participants will then be randomized to receive one of two types of improved, ventilated cookstoves with a chimney: a commercially-constructed cookstove (Envirofit G3300/G3355) or a locally-constructed cookstove. After four months of observation, participants will crossover and receive the other improved cookstove design and be followed for another four months. During each of the three four-month study periods, we will collect monthly information on self-reported respiratory symptoms, cooking practices, compliance with cookstove use (intervention periods only), and measure peak expiratory flow, forced expiratory volume at 1 second, exhaled carbon monoxide and blood pressure. We will also measure pulmonary function testing in the women participants and 24-hour kitchen particulate matter and carbon monoxide levels at least once per period. Discussion Findings from this study will help us better understand the behavioral, biological, and environmental changes that occur with a cookstove

  5. Internet Protocol Implementation Guide.

    DTIC Science & Technology

    1982-08-01

    Communications Netwv ’rks Reference: (a) USDR&E Memo, lHost-to-Host Protocols for Data Communications Networks," 23 Dec 78 (b) DoD Standard Transmission Control...memorandum is to clarify DOD policy concerning standardization of host-to-host protocols for data communications networks. 2. Tho policy cited in reference...function is intendel Lu paoe inrdased emphasis and Initiative on the Important and currently volatile technology of data communications protocol

  6. Evaluation of a toolkit to improve cardiovascular disease screening and treatment for people with type 2 diabetes: protocol for a cluster-randomized pragmatic trial

    PubMed Central

    2010-01-01

    Background The gap between the level of care recommended by evidence-based clinical practice guidelines and the actual care delivered to patients in practice has been well established. The Canadian Diabetes Association (CDA) created an implementation strategy to improve the implementation of its 2008 guidelines. This study will evaluate the impact of the strategy to improve cardiovascular disease (CVD) screening, prevention and treatment for people with diabetes. Design A pragmatic cluster-randomized trial will be conducted to evaluate the CDA's CVD Toolkit. All family physicians in Ontario, Canada were randomly allocated to receive the Toolkit, which includes several printed educational materials targeting CVD screening, prevention and treatment, either in spring 2009 (intervention arm) or in spring 2010 (control arm). Randomization occurred at the level of the practice. Forty family physicians from each arm will be recruited to participate, and the medical records for 20 of their diabetic patients at high risk for CVD will be retrospectively reviewed. Outcome measures will be assessed for each patient between July 2009 and March 2010. The primary outcome will be that the patient is receiving a statin. Secondary outcomes will include 1) the receipt of an angiotensin converting enzyme inhibitor or angiotensin receptor blocker, 2) various intermediate measures (A1c, blood pressure, LDL-cholesterol, total-/HDL-cholesterol ratio, body mass index and waist circumference), and 3) clinical inertia (the failure to change therapy in response to an abnormal A1c, blood pressure or cholesterol reading). The analysis will be carried out using multilevel hierarchical logistic regression models to account for the clustered nature of the data. The group assignment will be a physician-level variable. In addition, a process evaluation study with six focus groups of family physicians will assess the acceptability of the CDA's Toolkit and will explore factors contributing to any

  7. Does a pre-hospital emergency pathway improve early diagnosis and referral in suspected stroke patients? – Study protocol of a cluster randomised trial [ISRCTN41456865

    PubMed Central

    Ferri, Marica; De Luca, Assunta; Rossi, Paolo Giorgi; Lori, Giuliano; Guasticchi, Gabriella

    2005-01-01

    Background Early interventions proved to be able to improve prognosis in acute stroke patients. Prompt identification of symptoms, organised timely and efficient transportation towards appropriate facilities, become essential part of effective treatment. The implementation of an evidence based pre-hospital stroke care pathway may be a method for achieving the organizational standards required to grant appropriate care. We performed a systematic search for studies evaluating the effect of pre-hospital and emergency interventions for suspected stroke patients and we found that there seems to be only a few studies on the emergency field and none about implementation of clinical pathways. We will test the hypothesis that the adoption of emergency clinical pathway improves early diagnosis and referral in suspected stroke patients. We designed a cluster randomised controlled trial (C-RCT), the most powerful study design to assess the impact of complex interventions. The study was registered in the Current Controlled Trials Register: ISRCTN41456865 – Implementation of pre-hospital emergency pathway for stroke – a cluster randomised trial. Methods/design Two-arm cluster-randomised trial (C-RCT). 16 emergency services and 14 emergency rooms were randomised either to arm 1 (comprising a training module and administration of the guideline), or to arm 2 (no intervention, current practice). Arm 1 participants (152 physicians, 280 nurses, 50 drivers) attended an interactive two sessions course with continuous medical education CME credits on the contents of the clinical pathway. We estimated that around 750 patients will be met by the services in the 6 months of observation. This duration allows recruiting a sample of patients sufficient to observe a 30% improvement in the proportion of appropriate diagnoses. Data collection will be performed using current information systems. Process outcomes will be measured at the cluster level six months after the intervention. We will

  8. Developing and piloting a multifactorial intervention to address participation and quality of life in nursing home residents with joint contractures (JointConImprove): study protocol

    PubMed Central

    Müller, Martin; Bartoszek, Gabriele; Beutner, Katrin; Klingshirn, Hanna; Saal, Susanne; Stephan, Anna-Janina; Strobl, Ralf; Grill, Eva; Meyer, Gabriele

    2015-01-01

    Background: Joint contractures are common problems in frail older people in nursing homes. Irrespective of the exact extent of older individuals in geriatric care settings living with joint contractures, they appear to be a relevant problem. Also, the new emphasis on the syndrome of joint contractures, e. g. by the German statutory long term care insurance, led to an increase in assessment and documentation efforts and preventive interventions in clinical care. However, more attention should be paid to the actual situation of older individuals in nursing homes with prevalent joint contractures, particularly their experience of related activity limitations and participation restrictions. Thus, the aim of this study is 1) to develop a tailored intervention to improve functioning, and especially participation and quality of life in older residents with joint contractures in nursing homes and 2) to test the feasibility of the intervention accompanied by a rigorous process evaluation. Methods: The complex intervention, which will be developed in this project follows the UK Medical Research Council (MRC) framework and integrates the perspectives of all potentially relevant user groups, from the affected individuals to clinicians and researchers. The development process will comprise a systematic literature review, reanalysis of existing data and the integration of the knowledge of the affected individuals and experts. The developed intervention including a comprehensive process evaluation will be pilot tested with residents with joint contractures in three nursing homes. Discussion: The projected study will provide a tailored intervention to improve functioning, participation and quality of life in older residents with joint contractures in nursing homes. With this focus, the intervention will support patient relevant outcomes. The pilot study including process evaluation will offer a first opportunity to indicate the size of the intervention’s effect and prepare

  9. Close Collaboration with Parents™ intervention to improve parents' psychological well-being and child development: Description of the intervention and study protocol.

    PubMed

    Ahlqvist-Björkroth, Sari; Boukydis, Zack; Axelin, Anna Margareta; Lehtonen, Liisa

    2016-10-12

    Parents of preterm infants commonly experience separation from their infant or exclusion from their role as primary caregivers during the hospital care of their infant, which may impair parent-infant bonding and parents' psychological well-being. Therefore, we developed the Close Collaboration with Parents™ intervention to improve staff skills in communicating and collaborating with parents in neonatal intensive care units (NICU), to increase parents' presence and participation into infant care, and to improve parent-infant bonding and, thereby, parents' psychological well-being and later child development. The Close Collaboration with Parents™ intervention was developed and carried out at Turku University Hospital. The intervention was based on developmental theories about early parenthood and parent-infant attachment. The training was targeted at both doctors and nurses. The goals of the training included understanding individual behaviors and responses of infants and the uniqueness of families, using receptive listening skills in communication with parents and making decisions collaboratively with them. By increasing the sensitivity of the staff to the individual needs of infants and parents and by increasing staff-parent collaboration in daily care, the intervention supported parents' presence and parents' participation in the care of their infant. The effectiveness of the intervention is being evaluated in a prospective study comparing the post-intervention cohort (n=113) to the baseline cohort (n=232). The outcomes include bonding, long-term psychological well-being of both mothers and fathers and child development up to 5 years of age. The Close Collaboration with Parents™ intervention potentially offers a preventive and salutogenic model to integrate parents and parenting in neonatal hospital care.

  10. Efficacy and safety of a multifactor intervention to improve therapeutic adherence in patients with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD): protocol for the ICEPOC study

    PubMed Central

    2011-01-01

    Background Low therapeutic adherence to medication is very common. Clinical effectiveness is related to dose rate and route of administration and so poor therapeutic adherence can reduce the clinical benefit of treatment. The therapeutic adherence of patients with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) is extremely poor according to most studies. The research about COPD adherence has mainly focussed on quantifying its effect, and few studies have researched factors that affect non-adherence. Our study will evaluate the effectiveness of a multifactor intervention to improve the therapeutic adherence of COPD patients. Methods/Design A randomized controlled clinical trial with 140 COPD diagnosed patients selected by a non-probabilistic method of sampling. Subjects will be randomly allocated into two groups, using the block randomization technique. Every patient in each group will be visited four times during the year of the study. Intervention: Motivational aspects related to adherence (beliefs and behaviour): group and individual interviews; cognitive aspects: information about illness; skills: inhaled technique training. Reinforcement of the cognitive-emotional aspects and inhaled technique training will be carried out in all visits of the intervention group. Discussion Adherence to a prescribed treatment involves a behavioural change. Cognitive, emotional and motivational aspects influence this change and so we consider the best intervention procedure to improve adherence would be a cognitive and emotional strategy which could be applied in daily clinical practice. Our hypothesis is that the application of a multifactor intervention (COPD information, dose reminders and reinforcing audiovisual material, motivational aspects and inhalation technique training) to COPD patients taking inhaled treatment will give a 25% increase in the number of patients showing therapeutic adherence in this group compared to the control group. We will evaluate the effectiveness

  11. Improving access to preparatory information for children undergoing general anaesthesia for tooth extraction and their families: study protocol for a Phase III randomized controlled trial

    PubMed Central

    2014-01-01

    Background Children can find anaesthesia induction especially distressing and postoperative psychological and physical morbidity are common. Preparation programmes for general anaesthesia (GA) are highly effective in reducing this distress. A Phase II study has already verified the effectiveness of a prototype preoperative GA-coping computer game to help children cope with induction in a dental GA setting. The biggest patient users of pediatric GA services in the UK are children who need to have teeth removed (estimated to be 100,000 yearly). Tooth decay is the most common disease in children worldwide. This study is a Phase III randomized controlled trial (RCT) and will evaluate the effectiveness of the new internet version of this game. Methods/design The Phase III RCT will use a double-blind three-armed design. The clinical trial will recruit up to 210 children and will compare the web-based game against standard care and another non-medical game. At least 53 patients in each group will be required for 90% statistical power. Distress will be assessed through an evaluation of the child’s behaviour during the visit and later parental reports of physical and psychological morbidity. The satisfaction of parents and children will be measured; the mode of usage of the web-based game will be automatically recorded and the impact on the service (for example, recovery time and throughput) will be reported. The Phase III study primary outcome will measure: (1) patient experience: acceptance of anaesthetic induction, child cooperation and distress, reduction of peri- and postoperative morbidity, child and family satisfaction, and (2) service improvement: anaesthetic time and improvement in throughput. Measures will be administered at baseline, at the time of the GA treatment visit, and at 48 hours and one week postoperatively. Discussion This study aims to determine the effectiveness of an online GA-coping game for children and families undergoing tooth extraction under

  12. An e-Health Decision Support System for Improving Compliance of Health Workers to the Maternity Care Protocols in South Africa

    PubMed Central

    Horner, V.; Rautenbach, P.; Mbananga, N.; Mashamba, T.; Kwinda, H.

    2013-01-01

    Background There are problems of quality in maternity services at primary health care level in South Africa. Many of these problems can be traced to non-adherence to the maternity care guidelines and lack of tools to support clinic staff and managers in their roles. Objective: The aim of this research was to investigate the utility of e-health (computerized) decision support systems at addressing the problem of compliance of health workers to the maternity care guidelines at primary health care in South Africa. At present there are no documented studies on e-health clinical decision support systems for primary health care in South Africa, though clinical decision support systems for primary health care are listed as part of the e-health strategy of the National Department of Health. Methods: An e-health decision support system named the Bacis (Basic Antenatal Care Information System) Program was developed, then implemented and evaluated at a primary health care clinic. The duration of the study was two years: this includes development, implementation and evaluation. Results and Conclusion There was an overall improvement in compliance from 85.1 % to 89.3%. This result was not statistically significant. However when results were stratified into specific categories, the Bacis Program showed statistically significant improvement in compliance over the checklist system in three out of nine important categories. These are compliance at booking, patients younger than 18 years and patients booking after week 20. Further, insights and experience were also gained on development and implementation of clinical information systems at resource strained environments such as primary health care in South Africa. These results, insights and experience are invaluable for the implementation of the proposed e-health strategy in South Africa. PMID:23650485

  13. Rice Protein isolate improves lipid and glucose homeostasis in rats fed high fat/high cholesterol diets

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Hundreds of phytochemicals are bound to rice protein isolate (RPI) and many are bioactive. To determine the metabolic effects of feeding RPI in early development, weanling rats were fed AIN-93G diets made with casein or RPI for 14 d. Reduced growth rate and adiposity prior to puberty in RPI-fed ra...

  14. Evaluations and modifications of semi-selective media for improved isolation of Agrobacterium tumefaciens biovar 1 from cultivated walnut

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Agrobacterium tumefaciens, the causal agent of crown gall of walnut, is an aerobic, Gram negative bacterium belonging to the family Rhizobiaceae. Like many in this group, A. tumefaciens is a common inhabitant of soil and plant host tissue. Isolation from these complex environments is difficult even ...

  15. Propensity for biofilm formation by clinical isolates from urinary tract infections: developing a multifactorial predictive model to improve antibiotherapy.

    PubMed

    Alves, Maria José; Barreira, João C M; Carvalho, Inês; Trinta, Luis; Perreira, Liliana; Ferreira, Isabel C F R; Pintado, Manuela

    2014-03-01

    A group of biofilm-producing bacteria isolated from patients with urinary tract infections was evaluated, identifying the main factors contributing to biofilm formation. Among the 156 isolates, 58 (37.2%) were biofilm producers. The bacterial species (P<0.001), together with patient's gender (P = 0.022), were the factors with the highest influence for biofilm production. There was also a strong correlation of catheterization with biofilm formation, despite being less significant (P = 0.070) than species or gender. In fact, some of the bacteria isolated were biofilm producers in all cases. With regard to resistance profile among bacterial isolates, β-lactam antibiotics presented the highest number of cases/percentages--ampicillin (32/55.2%), cephalothin (30/51.7%), amoxicillin/clavulanic acid (22/37.9%)--although the carbapenem group still represented a good therapeutic option (2/3.4%). Quinolones (nucleic acid synthesis inhibitors) also showed high resistance percentages. Furthermore, biofilm production clearly increases bacterial resistance. Almost half of the biofilm-producing bacteria showed resistance against at least three different groups of antibiotics. Bacterial resistance is often associated with catheterization. Accordingly, intrinsic (age and gender) and extrinsic (hospital unit, bacterial isolate and catheterization) factors were used to build a predictive model, by evaluating the contribution of each factor to biofilm production. In this way, it is possible to anticipate biofilm occurrence immediately after bacterial identification, allowing selection of a more effective antibiotic (among the susceptibility options suggested by the antibiogram) against biofilm-producing bacteria. This approach reduces the putative bacterial resistance during treatment, and the consequent need to adjust antibiotherapy.

  16. Telehealth system (e-CUIDATE) to improve quality of life in breast cancer survivors: rationale and study protocol for a randomized clinical trial

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    Background Breast cancer survivors suffer physical impairment after oncology treatment. This impairment reduces quality of life (QoL) and increase the prevalence of handicaps associated to unhealthy lifestyle (for example, decreased aerobic capacity and strength, weight gain, and fatigue). Recent work has shown that exercise adapted to individual characteristics of patients is related to improved overall and disease-free survival. Nowadays, technological support using telerehabilitation systems is a promising strategy with great advantage of a quick and efficient contact with the health professional. It is not known the role of telerehabilitation through therapeutic exercise as a support tool to implement an active lifestyle which has been shown as an effective resource to improve fitness and reduce musculoskeletal disorders of these women. Methods / Design This study will use a two-arm, assessor blinded, parallel randomized controlled trial design. People will be eligible if: their diagnosis is of stages I, II, or IIIA breast cancer; they are without chronic disease or orthopedic issues that would interfere with ability to participate in a physical activity program; they had access to the Internet and basic knowledge of computer use or living with a relative who has this knowledge; they had completed adjuvant therapy except for hormone therapy and not have a history of cancer recurrence; and they have an interest in improving lifestyle. Participants will be randomized into e-CUIDATE or usual care groups. E-CUIDATE give participants access to a range of contents: planning exercise arranged in series with breathing exercises, mobility, strength, and stretching. All of these exercises will be assigned to women in the telerehabilitation group according to perceived needs. The control group will be asked to maintain their usual routine. Study endpoints will be assessed after 8 weeks (immediate effects) and after 6 months. The primary outcome will be QoL measured by The

  17. Feedback versus no feedback in improving patient outcome in group psychotherapy for eating disorders (F-EAT): protocol for a randomized clinical trial

    PubMed Central

    2014-01-01

    Background Continuous feedback on patient improvement and the therapeutic alliance may reduce the number of dropouts and increase patient outcome. There are, however, only three published randomized trials on the effect of feedback on the treatment of eating disorders, showing inconclusive results, and there are no randomized trials on the effect of feedback in group therapy. Accordingly the current randomized clinical trial, initiated in September 2012 at the outpatient clinic for eating disorders at Stolpegaard Psychotherapy Centre, aims to investigate the impact of continuous feedback on attendance and outcome in group psychotherapy. Methods/design The hypothesis is that continuous feedback to both patient and therapist on treatment progress and alliance will increase attendance and treatment outcome. The trial is set up using a randomized design with a minimum of 128 patients allocated to either an experimental or control group at a ratio of 1:1. The experimental group will receive standard treatment (systemic and narrative group psychotherapy) with feedback intervention, whereas the control group will receive standard treatment only. The participants are diagnosed with bulimia nervosa, binge eating disorder, or an eating disorder not otherwise specified, according to the DSM-IV. In the experimental group feedback to the participants, based on the Outcome Rating Scale (ORS) and the Group Session Rating Scale (GSRS), is actively added to standard treatment. The ORS assesses areas of life functioning known to change as a result of therapeutic intervention. The GSRS assesses key dimensions of effective therapeutic relationships. In the control group, the patients fill out the Outcome Rating Scale only, and feedback is not provided. The primary outcome is the rate of attendance to treatment sessions. The secondary outcome is the severity of eating disorder symptoms. Exploratory outcomes are the level of psychological and social functioning, and suicide or self

  18. e-Monitoring of Asthma Therapy to Improve Compliance in children using a real-time medication monitoring system (RTMM): the e-MATIC study protocol

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    Background Many children with asthma do not have sufficient asthma control, which leads to increased healthcare costs and productivity loss of parents. One of the causative factors are adherence problems. Effective interventions improving medication adherence may therefore improve asthma control and reduce costs. A promising solution is sending real time text-messages via the mobile phone network, when a medicine is about to be forgotten. As the effect of real time text-messages in children with asthma is unknown, the primary aim of this study is to determine the effect of a Real Time Medication Monitoring system (RTMM) with text-messages on adherence to inhaled corticosteroids (ICS). The secondary objective is to study the effects of RTMM on asthma control, quality of life and cost-effectiveness of treatment. Methods A multicenter, randomized controlled trial involving 220 children (4–11 years) using ICS for asthma. All children receive an RTMM-device for one year, which registers time and date of ICS doses. Children in the intervention group also receive tailored text-messages, sent only when a dose is at risk of omission. Primary outcome measure is the proportion of ICS dosages taken within the individually predefined time-interval. Secondary outcome measures include asthma control (monthly Asthma Control Tests), asthma exacerbations, healthcare use (collected from hospital records, patient reports and pharmacy record data), and disease-specific quality of life (PAQLQ questionnaire). Parental and children’s acceptance of RTMM is evaluated with online focus groups and patient questionnaires. An economic evaluation is performed adopting a societal perspective, including relevant healthcare costs and parental productivity loss. Furthermore, a decision-analytic model is developed in which different levels of adherence are associated with clinical and financial outcomes. Also, sensitivity analyses are carried out on different price levels for RTMM. Discussion

  19. Implementation of the epilepsy center of excellence to improve access to and quality of care – protocol for a mixed methods study

    PubMed Central

    2014-01-01

    Background To address the growing problem of epilepsy among aging Veterans and younger Veterans who have experienced a traumatic brain injury (TBI), the Veterans Health Administration (VA) has implemented 16 Epilepsy Centers of Excellence (ECOE) to assure increased access to high quality of care for Veterans with epilepsy. Each ECOE consists of a network of regional hubs to which spoke facilities refer Veterans for subspecialty treatment. The ECOEs are expected to improve access to and quality of epilepsy care through patient care, consultation and education. This study aims to: evaluate the effectiveness of the ECOE structure by describing changes in the quality of and access to care for epilepsy before and after the ECOE initiative using QUality Indicators in Epilepsy Treatment (QUIET Indicators); describe associations between changes in the structure and processes of care and Relational Coordination (RC), a model of task-oriented communication that has been shown to play a role in implementation science; and determine if variations in care are related to levels of RC. Methods This four-year comparative case study uses a mixed-methods approach. We will use VA inpatient, outpatient, pharmacy, and chart abstraction data to identify changes in the quality of and access to epilepsy care in the VA between Fiscal Year 2008 and Fiscal Year 2014. Qualitative and survey methods will be used to identify changes in the structure and processes of epilepsy care and RC over the course of the study. We will then link data from the first two objectives to determine the extent to which quality of and access to epilepsy care is associated with RC using multivariable models. Discussion This innovative study has the potential to improve understanding of hub-and-spoke model effectiveness, VA epilepsy care, and models of epilepsy specialty care more globally. Moreover, it contributes to implementation science by advancing understanding of the role of RC in the context of a major

  20. Happy@Work: protocol for a web-based randomized controlled trial to improve mental well-being among an Asian working population

    PubMed Central

    2014-01-01

    Background Mental health issues pose a serious concern in the workplace for the huge productivity loss and financial burden associated with it. Unlike the traditional ‘fixing-what-is-wrong’ approach, positive psychology offers a less-stigmatized way to promote mental health. Psychological capital, a concept originated from positive psychology, has been proven effective in improving mental well-being and work performance. However, little evidence exists for its implementation among Asian working population or its cost-benefit for organizations adopting such promotion strategy. The current study is designed to assess the protective effects of a web-based psychology capital intervention among Hong Kong working population on individuals’ mental health and work performance, as well as organizations’ return-on-investment. Methods/Design A two-arm randomized controlled trial design will be adopted. Eligible working adults will be randomly allocated to either the intervention group or the waiting-list control group, with 177 participants in each arm. The intervention, which consists of four web-based training sessions, each targeting one of the psychological capital components (hope, efficacy, optimism and resilience), will be implemented over a 4-week period. On-line surveys will assess the participants in each group at baseline, intervention completion, 1 and 3 months after the completion. The primary outcome is individuals’ psychological capital level; secondary outcomes include individuals’ well-being, depressive symptoms, work engagement and productivity. Return-on-investment will be calculated from the employers’ perspective based on productivity gain, savings in medical expenditure, as well as operation and time costs. Analysis will follow the intention-to-treat principle. Discussion This is the first experimental study that explores the applicability of psychological capital development among Asian population. Through investigating changes in

  1. Study to Improve Cardiovascular Outcomes in high-risk older patieNts (ICON1) with acute coronary syndrome: study design and protocol of a prospective observational study

    PubMed Central

    Kunadian, Vijay; Neely, R Dermot G; Sinclair, Hannah; Batty, Jonathan A; Veerasamy, Murugapathy; Ford, Gary A; Qiu, Weiliang

    2016-01-01

    Introduction The ICON1 study (a study to Improve Cardiovascular Outcomes in high-risk older patieNts with acute coronary syndrome) is a prospective observational study of older patients (≥75 years old) with non-ST-elevation acute coronary syndrome managed by contemporary treatment (pharmacological and invasive). The aim of the study was to determine the predictors of poor cardiovascular outcomes in this age group and to generate a risk prediction tool. Methods and analysis Participants are recruited from 2 tertiary hospitals in the UK. Baseline evaluation includes frailty, comorbidity, cognition and quality-of-life measures, inflammatory status assessed by a biomarker panel, including microRNAs, senescence assessed by telomere length and telomerase activity, cardiovascular status assessed by arterial stiffness, endothelial function, carotid intima media thickness and left ventricular systolic and diastolic function, and coronary plaque assessed by virtual histology intravascular ultrasound and optical coherence tomography. The patients are followed-up at 30 days and at 1 year for primary outcome measures of death, myocardial infarction, stroke, unplanned revascularisation, bleeding and rehospitalisation. Ethics and dissemination The study has been approved by the regional ethics committee (REC 12/NE/016). Findings of the study will be presented in scientific sessions and will be published in peer-reviewed journals. Trial registration number NCT01933581: Pre-results. PMID:27554105

  2. Improved conventional and microwave-assisted silylation protocols for simultaneous gas chromatographic determination of tocopherols and sterols: Method development and multi-response optimization.

    PubMed

    Poojary, Mahesha M; Passamonti, Paolo

    2016-12-09

    This paper reports on improved conventional thermal silylation (CTS) and microwave-assisted silylation (MAS) methods for simultaneous determination of tocopherols and sterols by gas chromatography. Reaction parameters in each of the methods developed were systematically optimized using a full factorial design followed by a central composite design. Initially, experimental conditions for CTS were optimized using a block heater. Further, a rapid MAS was developed and optimized. To understand microwave heating mechanisms, MAS was optimized by two distinct modes of microwave heating: temperature-controlled MAS and power-controlled MAS, using dedicated instruments where reaction temperature and microwave power level were controlled and monitored online. Developed methods: were compared with routine overnight derivatization. On a comprehensive level, while both CTS and MAS were found to be efficient derivatization techniques, MAS significantly reduced the reaction time. The optimal derivatization temperature and time for CTS found to be 55°C and 54min, while it was 87°C and 1.2min for temperature-controlled MAS. Further, a microwave power of 300W and a derivatization time 0.5min found to be optimal for power-controlled MAS. The use of an appropriate derivatization solvent, such as pyridine, was found to be critical for the successful determination. Catalysts, like potassium acetate and 4-dimethylaminopyridine, enhanced the efficiency slightly. The developed methods showed excellent analytical performance in terms of linearity, accuracy and precision.

  3. Improving the care of people with traumatic brain injury through the Neurotrauma Evidence Translation (NET) program: protocol for a program of research.

    PubMed

    Green, Sally E; Bosch, Marije; McKenzie, Joanne E; O'Connor, Denise A; Tavender, Emma J; Bragge, Peter; Chau, Marisa; Pitt, Veronica; Rosenfeld, Jeffrey V; Gruen, Russell L

    2012-08-07

    The Neurotrauma Evidence Translation (NET) program was funded in 2009 to increase the uptake of research evidence in the clinical care of patients who have sustained traumatic brain injury. This paper reports the rationale and plan for this five-year knowledge translation research program. The overarching aims of the program are threefold: to improve outcomes for people with traumatic brain injury; to create a network of neurotrauma clinicians and researchers with expertise in knowledge translation and evidence-based practice; and to contribute knowledge to the field of knowledge translation research. The program comprises a series of interlinked projects spanning varying clinical environments and disciplines relevant to neurotrauma, anchored within four themes representing core knowledge translation activities: reviewing research evidence; understanding practice; developing and testing interventions for practice change; and building capacity for knowledge translation in neurotrauma. The program uses a range of different methods and study designs, including: an evidence fellowship program; conduct of and training in systematic reviews; mixed method study designs to describe and understand factors that influence current practices (e.g., semi-structured interviews and surveys); theory-based methods to develop targeted interventions aiming to change practice; a cluster randomised trial to test the effectiveness of a targeted theory-informed intervention; stakeholder involvement activities; and knowledge translation events such as consensus conferences.

  4. Encapsulation of carvacrol, a monoterpene present in the essential oil of oregano, with β-cyclodextrin, improves the pharmacological response on cancer pain experimental protocols.

    PubMed

    Guimarães, Adriana Gibara; Oliveira, Marlange Almeida; Alves, Rafael dos Santos; Menezes, Paula dos Passos; Serafini, Mairim Russo; Araújo, Adriano Antunes de Souza; Bezerra, Daniel Pereira; Quintans Júnior, Lucindo José

    2015-02-05

    Cancer pain is a major public health problem worldwide due to the strong impact on the quality of life of patients and side effects of the existing therapeutic options. Monoterpenes, as carvacrol (CARV), have been extensively studied about their therapeutic properties, especially their importance in the control of painful conditions and inflammation, which can be improved through the use of inclusion complexes of β-cyclodextrin (β-CD). We evaluated the effect of encapsulation of CARV in β-CD (CARV/β-CD) on the nociception induced by tumor cells (Sarcoma 180) in rodents. Inclusion complexes were prepared in two different procedures and characterized through thermal analysis and scanning electron microscopy. CARV/β-CD complex was administered (50 mg/kg, p.o.) in mice with tumor on the hind paw and was able to reduce the hyperalgesia (von Frey) during 24 h, unlike the free CARV (100 mg/kg, p.o.), which promoted effects until 9 h. Administration on alternate days of complex of CARV/β-CD (12.5-50 mg/kg, p.o.) reduced hyperalgesia, as well as spontaneous and palpation-induced nociception. However, pure CARV (50 mg/kg) did not cause significant changes in nociceptive responses. Together, these results produced evidence that the encapsulation of carvacrol in β-cyclodextrin can be useful for the development of new options for pain management.

  5. National Sample Assessment Protocols

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Ministerial Council on Education, Employment, Training and Youth Affairs (NJ1), 2012

    2012-01-01

    These protocols represent a working guide for planning and implementing national sample assessments in connection with the national Key Performance Measures (KPMs). The protocols are intended for agencies involved in planning or conducting national sample assessments and personnel responsible for administering associated tenders or contracts,…

  6. Protocol for a home-based integrated physical therapy program to reduce falls and improve mobility in people with Parkinson’s disease

    PubMed Central

    2012-01-01

    Background The high incidence of falls associated with Parkinson’s disease (PD) increases the risk of injuries and immobility and compromises quality of life. Although falls education and strengthening programs have shown some benefit in healthy older people, the ability of physical therapy interventions in home settings to reduce falls and improve mobility in people with Parkinson’s has not been convincingly demonstrated. Methods/design 180 community living people with PD will be randomly allocated to receive either a home-based integrated rehabilitation program (progressive resistance strength training, movement strategy training and falls education) or a home-based life skills program (control intervention). Both programs comprise one hour of treatment and one hour of structured homework per week over six weeks of home therapy. Blinded assessments occurring before therapy commences, the week after completion of therapy and 12 months following intervention will establish both the immediate and long-term benefits of home-based rehabilitation. The number of falls, number of repeat falls, falls rate and time to first fall will be the primary measures used to quantify outcome. The economic costs associated with injurious falls, and the costs of running the integrated rehabilitation program from a health system perspective will be established. The effects of intervention on motor and global disability and on quality of life will also be examined. Discussion This study will provide new evidence on the outcomes and cost effectiveness of home-based movement rehabilitation programs for people living with PD. Trial registration The trial is registered on the Australian and New Zealand Clinical Trials Registry (ACTRN12608000390381). PMID:22799601

  7. A cost-effectiveness analysis of provider and community interventions to improve the treatment of uncomplicated malaria in Nigeria: study protocol for a randomized controlled trial

    PubMed Central

    2012-01-01

    Background There is mounting evidence of poor adherence by health service personnel to clinical guidelines for malaria following a symptomatic diagnosis. In response to this, the World Health Organization (WHO) recommends that in all settings clinical suspicion of malaria should be confirmed by parasitological diagnosis using microscopy or Rapid Diagnostic Test (RDT). The Government of Nigeria plans to introduce RDTs in public health facilities over the coming year. In this context, we will evaluate the effectiveness and cost-effectiveness of two interventions designed to support the roll-out of RDTs and improve the rational use of ACTs. It is feared that without supporting interventions, non-adherence will remain a serious impediment to implementing malaria treatment guidelines. Methods/design A three-arm stratified cluster randomized trial is used to compare the effectiveness and cost-effectiveness of: (1) provider malaria training intervention versus expected standard practice in malaria diagnosis and treatment; (2) provider malaria training intervention plus school-based intervention versus expected standard practice; and (3) the combined provider plus school-based intervention versus provider intervention alone. RDTs will be introduced in all arms of the trial. The primary outcome is the proportion of patients attending facilities that report a fever or suspected malaria and receive treatment according to malaria guidelines. This will be measured by surveying patients (or caregivers) as they exit primary health centers, pharmacies, and patent medicine dealers. Cost-effectiveness will be presented in terms of the primary outcome and a range of secondary outcomes, including changes in provider and community knowledge. Costs will be estimated from both a societal and provider perspective using standard economic evaluation methodologies. Trial registration Clinicaltrials.gov NCT01350752 PMID:22682276

  8. Effect of stacking interactions on the thermodynamics and kinetics of lumiflavin: a study with improved density functionals and density functional tight-binding protocol.

    PubMed

    Bresnahan, Caitlin G; Reinhardt, Clorice R; Bartholow, Thomas G; Rumpel, John P; North, Michael; Bhattacharyya, Sudeep

    2015-01-08

    The π-π stacking interaction between lumiflavin and a number of π-electron-rich molecules has been studied by density functional theory using several new-generation density functionals. Six known lumiflavin-aromatic adducts were used and the models were evaluated by comparing the geometry and energetics with experimental results. The study found that dispersion-corrected and hybrid functionals with larger (>50%) Hartree-Fock exchanges produced superior results in modeling thermodynamic characteristics of these complexes. The functional producing the best energetics for these model systems was used to study the stacking interactions of lumiflavin with biologically relevant aromatic groups. Additionally, the reduction of flavin-in the presence of both a hydride donor and a nondonor π-electronic system was also studied. Weak interactions were observed in the stacked lumiflavin complexes of benzene, phenol, and indole, mimicking phenyl alanine, tryptophan, and tyrosine side chains, respectively, of an enzyme. The stacked complex of naphthalene and flavin showed little change in flavin's redox potential indicating insignificant effect on the thermodynamics of the hydride transfer reaction. In contrast, the hydride transfer reaction with the hydride donor N-methyl nicotinamide tells a different story, as the transition state was found to be strongly impacted by the stacking interactions. A comparison of performance between the density functional theory (DFT) and the computationally less expensive dispersion-corrected self-consistent density functional tight-binding (SCC-DFTB-D) theory revealed that the latter produces consistent energetics for this hydride transfer reaction and additional DFT-computed perturbative corrections could significantly improve these results.

  9. Interventions to improve the self-management support health professionals provide for people with progressive neurological conditions: protocol for a realist synthesis

    PubMed Central

    Wood, Fiona; Bullock, Alison; Wallace, Carolyn; Edwards, Adrian

    2017-01-01

    Introduction Supporting self-management among people with long-term conditions is recognised as an important component of healthcare. Progressive neurological conditions (PNCs), for example, Parkinson's disease and multiple sclerosis are associated with problems such as fatigue and cognitive impairment which may make self-management more challenging. Health professionals may need to develop specific skills in order to provide effective self-management support for these patients. The review aims to develop explanatory theories about how health professional-targeted interventions to improve self-management support provision for people with PNCs operate in different circumstances. Methods and analysis A realist synthesis of the evidence is proposed. There are 2 priority questions for the review to address. These relate to the role of a shared concept of self-management support within the healthcare team, and the need to tailor the support provided to the requirements of people with PNCs. Key stakeholders will be involved throughout the process. The initial search strategy uses terms relating to (1) self-management, (2) health professionals and (3) PNCs. Searching, data extraction and synthesis will occur in parallel. Studies will be prioritised for inclusion based on anticipated contribution to generating explanatory theories. Key informant interviews are planned to direct supplementary searches and help further refine the theories developed. Results will be expressed in the form of context–mechanism–outcome configurations. Ethics and dissemination Publication guidelines on realist synthesis will be followed. The results will be published in a peer-reviewed journal and made available to organisations involved in the provision of health professional training. PMID:28320798

  10. Improving adolescent mental health and resilience through a resilience-based intervention in schools: study protocol for a randomised controlled trial

    PubMed Central

    2014-01-01

    Background Research investigating the effectiveness of universal interventions to reduce the risk of mental health problems remains limited. Schools are a promising setting within which adolescents can receive interventions aimed at promoting their mental health. The aim of this study is to assess the effectiveness of a resilience-based prevention-focused intervention in reducing the risk of mental health problems among adolescents attending secondary school in socio-economically disadvantaged areas. Methods/design A cluster randomised control trial will be conducted, with schools as the unit of randomisation. Initially, 32 secondary schools will be randomly allocated to a control or intervention group (12 control and 20 intervention). An intervention focused on improving student internal and external resilience factors will be implemented in intervention schools. A survey of students in Grade 7 in both intervention and control schools will be conducted (baseline) and repeated three years later when the students are in Grade 10. The Strengths and Difficulties Questionnaire will be used to measure the risk of mental health problems. At follow-up, the risk of mental health problems will be compared between Grade 10 students in intervention and control schools to determine intervention effectiveness. Discussion The study presents an opportunity to determine the effectiveness of a comprehensive resilience-based intervention in reducing the risk of mental health problems in adolescents attending secondary schools. The outcomes of the trial are of importance to youth, schools, mental health clinicians and policymakers. Trial registration Australian New Zealand Clinical Trials Registry, ACTRN12611000606987, registered 14 June 2011. PMID:25037455

  11. Montreal protocol: Business opportunites

    SciTech Connect

    1998-12-31

    The Montreal Protocol on Substances that Deplete the Ozone Layer was signed by 24 countries in 1987, establishing measures for controlling the production and consumption of ozone-depleting substances. This publication begins with some background information on ozone depletion and the history of the Protocol. It then describes aspects of the Protocol`s Multilateral Fund, created to assist developing countries to meet Protocol deadlines: Its administration, structure, and how projects are initiated. Names, addresses, and phone/fax numbers of Fund contacts are provided. Canadian projects under the Fund are then reviewed and opportunities for Canadian environmental companies are noted. Finally, information sheets are presented which summarize Fund-related Canadian bilateral projects undertaken to date.

  12. Reliable broadcast protocols

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Joseph, T. A.; Birman, Kenneth P.

    1989-01-01

    A number of broadcast protocols that are reliable subject to a variety of ordering and delivery guarantees are considered. Developing applications that are distributed over a number of sites and/or must tolerate the failures of some of them becomes a considerably simpler task when such protocols are available for communication. Without such protocols the kinds of distributed applications that can reasonably be built will have a very limited scope. As the trend towards distribution and decentralization continues, it will not be surprising if reliable broadcast protocols have the same role in distributed operating systems of the future that message passing mechanisms have in the operating systems of today. On the other hand, the problems of engineering such a system remain large. For example, deciding which protocol is the most appropriate to use in a certain situation or how to balance the latency-communication-storage costs is not an easy question.

  13. Confirmation of human Campylobacter concisus isolates misidentified as Campylobacter mucosalis and suggestions for improved differentiation between the two species.

    PubMed

    On, S L

    1994-09-01

    A strain from human diarrhea originally identified as Campylobacter mucosalis (NCTC 12408) was examined by using 64 phenotypic characters. The similarity of this strain to 297 isolates of Campylobacter, Helicobacter, Arcobacter, and related taxa was then determined with a computer-supported data analysis program, MVSP. NCTC 12408 showed closest similarity to 20 type, reference, and field isolates of Campylobacter concisus. These strains were clearly separated from those of C. mucosalis in the numerical analysis of phenotypic tests; a table was constructed from the data used to aid in differentiating these two species in the clinical laboratory. The identity of NCTC 12408 was confirmed as C. concisus by visual comparison of its sodium dodecyl sulfate-polyacrylamide gel whole-cell protein electrophoregram with those of type strains of C. concisus and C. mucosalis. These data suggest that genuine human infection with C. mucosalis has not yet been reported.

  14. SMS reminders to improve the tuberculosis cure rate in developing countries (TB-SMS Cameroon): a protocol of a randomised control study

    PubMed Central

    2014-01-01

    . This study explores the potential of mHealth to support DOTS strategy. It will gather new evidence on the effectiveness of mHealth-based interventions and SMS reminders in the improvement of treatment adherence and the cure rate of tuberculosis patients, especially in a low-resource country such as Cameroon. Trial registration The trial is registered on the Pan-African Clinical Trials Registry (http://www.pactr.org) under unique identification number: PACTR201307000583416. PMID:24460827

  15. Optimising Ankle Foot Orthoses for children with Cerebral Palsy walking with excessive knee flexion to improve their mobility and participation; protocol of the AFO-CP study

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    assess relationships between outcome measures. This will give insights into working mechanisms of FROs and will help to identify predictors of treatment success, both of which will contribute to improving FRO treatment in SCP in term. Trial registration This study is registered in the Dutch Trial Register as NTR3418. PMID:23374998

  16. Lay health supporters aided by a mobile phone messaging system to improve care of villagers with schizophrenia in Liuyang, China: protocol for a randomised control trial

    PubMed Central

    Gong, Wenjie; Caine, Eric D; Xiao, Shuiyuan; Hughes, James P; Ng, Marie; Simoni, Jane; He, Hua; Smith, Kirk L; Brown, Henry Shelton; Gloyd, Stephen

    2016-01-01

    Introduction Schizophrenia is a severe, chronic and disabling mental illness. Non-adherence to medication and relapse may lead to poorer patient function. This randomised controlled study, under the acronym LEAN (Lay health supporter, e-platform, award, and iNtegration), is designed to improve medication adherence and high relapse among people with schizophrenia in resource poor settings. Methods/analysis The community-based LEAN has four parts: (1) Lay health supporters (LHSs), mostly family members who will help supervise patient medication, monitor relapse and side effects, and facilitate access to care, (2) an E-platform to support two-way mobile text and voice messaging to remind patients to take medication; and alert LHSs when patients are non-adherent, (3) an Award system to motivate patients and strengthen LHS support, and (4) iNtegration of the efforts of patients and LHSs with those of village doctors, township mental health administrators and psychiatrists via the e-platform. A random sample of 258 villagers with schizophrenia will be drawn from the schizophrenic ‘686’ Program registry for the 9 Xiang dialect towns of the Liuyang municipality in China. The sample will be further randomised into a control group and a treatment group of equal sizes, and each group will be followed for 6 months after launch of the intervention. The primary outcome will be medication adherence as measured by pill counts and supplemented by pharmacy records. Other outcomes include symptoms and level of function. Outcomes will be assessed primarily when patients present for medication refill visits scheduled every 2 months over the 6-month follow-up period. Data from the study will be analysed using analysis of covariance for the programme effect and an intent-to-treat approach. Ethics and dissemination University of Washington: 49464 G; Central South University: CTXY-150002-6. Results will be published in peer-reviewed journals with deidentified data made available on

  17. Snakebite management in Iran: Devising a protocol

    PubMed Central

    Monzavi, Seyed Mostafa; Dadpour, Bita; Afshari, Reza

    2014-01-01

    Background: Snakebite in Iran has been a health concern. However, management of snakebite is not standardized and varies from center to center. This study is aimed at devising an evidence-based comprehensive protocol for snakebite management in Iran, to reduce unnecessary variations in practice. Materials and Methods: A narrative search in electronic databases was performed. Fifty peer-reviewed articles, guidelines, and textbooks were reviewed and practical details were extracted. Our currently used protocol in the Mashhad Toxicology Center was supplemented with this information. Consequently an improved wide-range protocol was developed. The protocol was then discussed and amended within a focus group comprised of medical toxicologists and internal medicine specialists. The amended version was finally discussed with expert physicians specialized in different areas of medicine, to be optimized by supplementing other specific considerations. Results: During a one-year process, the protocol was finalized. The final version of the protocol, which was designed in six steps, comprised of three components: A schematic algorithm, a severity grading scale, and instructions for supportive and adjunctive treatments. The algorithm pertains to both Viperidae and Elapidae snakebite envenomations and consists of a planned course of action and dosing of antivenom, based on the severity of the envenomation. Conclusion: Snakebite envenomation is a clinical toxicologic emergency, which needs to be treated in a timely and organized manner. Hence, a multi-aspect protocol was designed to improve the clinical outcomes, reduce unnecessary administration of antivenom, and help physicians make more proper clinical judgments. PMID:24778670

  18. Clinical grade isolation of regulatory T cells from G-CSF mobilized peripheral blood improves with initial depletion of monocytes.

    PubMed

    Patel, Pritesh; Mahmud, Dolores; Park, Youngmin; Yoshinaga, Kazumi; Mahmud, Nadim; Rondelli, Damiano

    2015-01-01

    Clinical isolation of circulating CD4(+)CD25(+) regulatory T cells (Tregs) from peripheral blood mononuclear cells is usually performed by CD4(+) cell negative selection followed by CD25(+) cell positive selection. Although G-CSF mobilized peripheral blood (G-PBSC) contains a high number of Tregs, a high number of monocytes in G-PBSC limits Treg isolation. Using a small scale device (MidiMACS, Miltenyi) we initially demonstrated that an initial depletion of monocytes would be necessary to obtaina separation of CD4(+)CD25(+)FoxP3(+)CD127(-) cells from G-PBSC (G-Tregs) with a consistent purity >70% and inhibitory activity of T cell alloreactivity in-vitro. We then validated the same approach in a clinical scale setting by separating G-Tregs with clinically available antibodies to perform a CD8(+)CD19(+)CD14(+) cell depletion followed by CD25(+) cell selection (2-step process) or by adding an initial CD14(+) cell depletion (3-step process) using a CliniMACS column. The 3-step approach resulted in a better purity (81±12% vs. 35±33%) and yield (66% vs. 39%). Clinically isolated G-Tregs were also FoxP3(+)CD127(dim) and functionally suppressive in-vitro. Our findings suggest that a better and more consistent purity of Tregs can be achieved from G-PBSC by an initial single depletion of monocytes prior to selection of CD4(+)CD25(+) cells.

  19. Clinical grade isolation of regulatory T cells from G-CSF mobilized peripheral blood improves with initial depletion of monocytes

    PubMed Central

    Patel, Pritesh; Mahmud, Dolores; Park, Youngmin; Yoshinaga, Kazumi; Mahmud, Nadim; Rondelli, Damiano

    2015-01-01

    Clinical isolation of circulating CD4+CD25+ regulatory T cells (Tregs) from peripheral blood mononuclear cells is usually performed by CD4+ cell negative selection followed by CD25+ cell positive selection. Although G-CSF mobilized peripheral blood (G-PBSC) contains a high number of Tregs, a high number of monocytes in G-PBSC limits Treg isolation. Using a small scale device (MidiMACS, Miltenyi) we initially demonstrated that an initial depletion of monocytes would be necessary to obtaina separation of CD4+CD25+FoxP3+CD127- cells from G-PBSC (G-Tregs) with a consistent purity >70% and inhibitory activity of T cell alloreactivity in-vitro. We then validated the same approach in a clinical scale setting by separating G-Tregs with clinically available antibodies to perform a CD8+CD19+CD14+ cell depletion followed by CD25+ cell selection (2-step process) or by adding an initial CD14+ cell depletion (3-step process) using a CliniMACS column. The 3-step approach resulted in a better purity (81±12% vs. 35±33%) and yield (66% vs. 39%). Clinically isolated G-Tregs were also FoxP3+CD127dim and functionally suppressive in-vitro. Our findings suggest that a better and more consistent purity of Tregs can be achieved from G-PBSC by an initial single depletion of monocytes prior to selection of CD4+CD25+ cells. PMID:27069755

  20. Reliable multicast protocol specifications protocol operations

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Callahan, John R.; Montgomery, Todd; Whetten, Brian

    1995-01-01

    This appendix contains the complete state tables for Reliable Multicast Protocol (RMP) Normal Operation, Multi-RPC Extensions, Membership Change Extensions, and Reformation Extensions. First the event types are presented. Afterwards, each RMP operation state, normal and extended, is presented individually and its events shown. Events in the RMP specification are one of several things: (1) arriving packets, (2) expired alarms, (3) user events, (4) exceptional conditions.

  1. Potential anesthesia protocols for space exploration missions.

    PubMed

    Komorowski, Matthieu; Watkins, Sharmila D; Lebuffe, Gilles; Clark, Jonathan B

    2013-03-01

    In spaceflight beyond low Earth's orbit, medical conditions requiring surgery are of a high level of concern because of their potential impact on crew health and mission success. Whereas surgical techniques have been thoroughly studied in spaceflight analogues, the research focusing on anesthesia is limited. To provide safe anesthesia during an exploration mission will be a highly challenging task. The research objective is thus to describe specific anesthesia procedures enabling treatment of pre-identified surgical conditions. Among the medical conditions considered by the NASA Human Research Program Exploration Medical Capability element, those potentially necessitating anesthesia techniques have been identified. The most appropriate procedure for each condition is thoroughly discussed. The substantial cost of training time necessary to implement regional anesthesia is pointed out. Within general anesthetics, ketamine combines the unique advantages of preservation of cardiovascular stability, the protective airway reflexes, and spontaneous ventilation. Ketamine side effects have for decades tempered enthusiasm for its use, but recent developments in mitigation means broadened its indications. The extensive experience gathered in remote environments, with minimal equipment and occasionally by insufficiently trained care providers, confirms its high degree of safety. Two ketamine-based anesthesia protocols are described with their corresponding indications. They have been designed taking into account the physiological changes occurring in microgravity and the specific constraints of exploration missions. This investigation could not only improve surgical care during long-duration spaceflights, but may find a number of terrestrial applications in isolated or austere environments.

  2. Improving mood with psychoanalytic and cognitive therapies (IMPACT): a pragmatic effectiveness superiority trial to investigate whether specialised psychological treatment reduces the risk for relapse in adolescents with moderate to severe unipolar depression: study protocol for a randomised controlled trial

    PubMed Central

    2011-01-01

    Background Up to 70% of adolescents with moderate to severe unipolar major depression respond to psychological treatment plus Fluoxetine (20-50 mg) with symptom reduction and improved social function reported by 24 weeks after beginning treatment. Around 20% of non responders appear treatment resistant and 30% of responders relapse within 2 years. The specific efficacy of different psychological therapies and the moderators and mediators that influence risk for relapse are unclear. The cost-effectiveness and safety of psychological treatments remain poorly evaluated. Methods/Design Improving Mood with Psychoanalytic and Cognitive Therapies, the IMPACT Study, will determine whether Cognitive Behavioural Therapy or Short Term Psychoanalytic Therapy is superior in reducing relapse compared with Specialist Clinical Care. The study is a multicentre pragmatic effectiveness superiority randomised clinical trial: Cognitive Behavioural Therapy consists of 20 sessions over 30 weeks, Short Term Psychoanalytic Psychotherapy 30 sessions over 30 weeks and Specialist Clinical Care 12 sessions over 20 weeks. We will recruit 540 patients with 180 randomised to each arm. Patients will be reassessed at 6, 12, 36, 52 and 86 weeks. Methodological aspects of the study are systematic recruitment, explicit inclusion criteria, reliability checks of assessments with control for rater shift, research assessors independent of treatment team and blind to randomization, analysis by intention to treat, data management using remote data entry, measures of quality assurance, advanced statistical analysis, manualised treatment protocols, checks of adherence and competence of therapists and assessment of cost-effectiveness. We will also determine whether time to recovery and/or relapse are moderated by variations in brain structure and function and selected genetic and hormone biomarkers taken at entry. Discussion The objective of this clinical trial is to determine whether there are specific

  3. Isolation of ribosomes and polysomes.

    PubMed

    Rivera, Maria C; Maguire, Bruce; Lake, James A

    2015-03-02

    Here we describe a preparative differential centrifugation protocol for the isolation of ribosomes from a crude cell homogenate. The subcellular fraction obtained is enriched in ribosome monomers and polysomes. The protocol has been optimized for the homogenization and collection of the ribosomal fraction from prokaryotic cells, mammalian and plant tissues, reticulocytes, and chloroplasts. The quality of the ribosomal preparation is enhanced by the removal of the remaining cellular components and adsorbed proteins by pelleting through a sucrose cushion with a high concentration of monovalent salts, NH4Cl or KCl. The different components of the ribosomal fraction isolated using this protocol can be further purified by sucrose gradient centrifugation.

  4. A Secure and Efficient Handover Authentication Protocol for Wireless Networks

    PubMed Central

    Wang, Weijia; Hu, Lei

    2014-01-01

    Handover authentication protocol is a promising access control technology in the fields of WLANs and mobile wireless sensor networks. In this paper, we firstly review an efficient handover authentication protocol, named PairHand, and its existing security attacks and improvements. Then, we present an improved key recovery attack by using the linearly combining method and reanalyze its feasibility on the improved PairHand protocol. Finally, we present a new handover authentication protocol, which not only achieves the same desirable efficiency features of PairHand, but enjoys the provable security in the random oracle model. PMID:24971471

  5. An Gen2 Based Security Authentication Protocol for RFID System

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yi, Xiaoluo; Wang, Liangmin; Mao, Dongmei; Zhan, Yongzhao

    EPC Class-1 Generation-2 specification(Gen2 in brief) has been accepted as the standard for RFID tags under grant number ISO18000-6C. However, Gen2 does not pay due attention to security. For this reason, a Gen2 based security authentication protocol is developed in this paper. In details, we study the security requirements presented in the current Gen2 based RFID authentication protocols[7-13]. Then we point out the security flaws of Chien's mutual authentication protocol[7], and improve the protocol based on a 11 security requirements. Our improved protocol merely uses CRC and PRNG operations supported by Gen2 and meets the 11 security requirements. In contrast to the similar work [14,15] on Chien's protocol or other Gen2 based schemes, our protocol is more secure and our security analysis is much more comprehensive and qualitative.

  6. An improved method of DNA isolation suitable for PCR-based detection of begomoviruses from jute and other mucilaginous plants.

    PubMed

    Ghosh, Raju; Paul, Sujay; Ghosh, Subrata Kumar; Roy, Anirban

    2009-07-01

    A relatively quick and inexpensive modified cetyl trimethylammonium bromide method for extraction of DNA from leaf materials containing large quantities of mucilage is described. The modification including use of more volume of extraction buffer and dissolving crude nucleic acid pellet in 1 M NaCl, reduced markedly the viscosity of the mucilage and thus in the final purification step yielded a larger quantity of mucilage-free DNA suitable for subsequent PCR-based detection of begomoviruses. The method was standardized with jute samples with yellow mosaic disease and validated with different other mucilaginous-hosts with low titre of begomoviruses. DNA isolated using this method showed consistency in yield and compatibility with PCR for detection of begomoviruses from different mucilaginous plant species. The method was compared for efficacy with other reported methods and it was found to be superior over the existing methods described for isolation of DNA from mucilaginous hosts. Thus the method described could be used on a wider scale for reliable and consistent detection of begomoviruses from mucilaginous hosts for characterization and variability study.

  7. Improved isolation and purification of functional human Fas receptor extracellular domain using baculovirus-silkworm expression system.

    PubMed

    Muraki, Michiro; Honda, Shinya

    2011-11-01

    To achieve an efficient isolation of human Fas receptor extracellular domain (hFasRECD), a fusion protein of hFasRECD with human IgG1 heavy chain Fc domain containing thrombin cleavage sequence at the junction site was overexpressed using baculovirus-silkworm larvae expression system. The hFasRECD part was separated from the fusion protein by the effective cleavage of the recognition site with bovine thrombin. Protein G column treatment of the reaction mixture and the subsequent cation-exchange chromatography provided purified hFasRECD with a final yield of 13.5mg from 25.0 ml silkworm hemolymph. The functional activity of the product was examined by size-exclusion chromatography analysis. The isolated hFasRECD less strongly interacted with human Fas ligand extracellular domain (hFasLECD) than the Fc domain-bridged counterpart, showing the contribution of antibody-like avidity in the latter case. The purified glycosylated hFasRECD presented several discrete bands in the disulphide-bridge non-reducing SDS-PAGE analysis, and virtually all of the components were considered to participate in the binding to hFasLECD. The attached glycans were susceptible to PNGase F digestion, but mostly resistant to Endo Hf digestion under denaturing conditions. One of the components exhibited a higher susceptibility to PNGase F digestion under non-denaturing conditions.

  8. Protocols — EDRN Public Portal

    Cancer.gov

    EDRN investigators protocols. The following is a list of the EDRN protocols that have been captured and curated. Additional information will be added as it is available. Contact information is provided as part of the detail for each protocol.

  9. Data-centric privacy protocol for intensive care grids.

    PubMed

    Luna, Jesus; Dikaiakos, Marios; Marazakis, Manolis; Kyprianou, Theodoros

    2010-11-01

    Modern e-Health systems require advanced computing and storage capabilities, leading to the adoption of technologies like the grid and giving birth to novel health grid systems. In particular, intensive care medicine uses this paradigm when facing a high flow of data coming from intensive care unit's (ICU) inpatients just like demonstrated by the ICGrid system prototyped by the University of Cyprus. Unfortunately, moving an ICU patient's data from the traditionally isolated hospital's computing facilities to data grids via public networks (i.e., the Internet) makes it imperative to establish an integral and standardized security solution to avoid common attacks on the data and metadata being managed. Particular emphasis must be put on the patient's personal data, the protection of which is required by legislations in many countries of the European Union and the world in general. In this paper, we extend our previous research with the following contributions: 1) a mandatory access control model to protect patient's metadata; 2) a major security revision to our previously proposed privacy protocol by contributing with a "quality of security" quantitative metric to improve fragmented data's assurance; and finally, 3) a set of early results to demonstrate that our protocol not only improves a patient personal data's security and privacy but also achieves a performance comparable with existing approaches.

  10. Quantum deniable authentication protocol

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Shi, Wei-Min; Zhou, Yi-Hua; Yang, Yu-Guang

    2014-07-01

    The proposed quantum identity authentication schemes only involved authentication between two communicators, but communications with deniability capability are often desired in electronic applications such as online negotiation and electronic voting. In this paper, we proposed a quantum deniable authentication protocol. According to the property of unitary transformation and quantum one-way function, this protocol can provide that only the specified receiver can identify the true source of a given message and the specified receiver cannot prove the source of the message to a third party by a transcript simulation algorithm. Moreover, the quantum key distribution and quantum encryption algorithm guarantee the unconditional security of this scheme. Security analysis results show that this protocol satisfies the basic security requirements of deniable authentication protocol such as completeness and deniability and can withstand the forgery attack, impersonation attack, inter-resend attack.

  11. Response surface optimization for enhanced production of cellulases with improved functional characteristics by newly isolated Aspergillus niger HN-2.

    PubMed

    Oberoi, Harinder Singh; Rawat, Rekha; Chadha, Bhupinder Singh

    2014-01-01

    Fungi isolated from partially decayed wood log samples showing characteristic diversity for spore colour, colony morphology and arrangement of spores were assessed for cellulolytic enzyme production. Isolates showing a cellulolytic index of ≥2.0 were assayed for filter paper (FP) cellulase and β-glucosidase (BGL) production. Molecular characterization confirmed the identity of the selected cellulolytic isolate as a strain of Aspergillus niger (A. niger HN-2). Addition of 2 % (w/v) urea enhanced FP and BGL activity by about 20 and 60 %, respectively. Validation studies conducted at parameters (29 °C, pH 5.4, moisture content 72 % and 66 h) optimized through response surface methodology in a solid-state static tray fermentation resulted in FP, BGL, cellobiohydrolase I (CBHI), endoglucanase (EG), xylanase activity and protein content of 25.3 FPU/g ds, 750 IU/g ds, 13.2 IU/g ds, 190 IU/g ds, 2890 IU/g ds and 0.9 mg/ml, respectively. In comparison, A. niger N402 which is a model organism for growth and development studies, produced significantly lower FP, BGL, CBHI, EG, xylanase activity and protein content of 10.0 FPU/g ds, 100 IU/g ds, 2.3 IU/g ds, 50 IU/g ds, 500 IU/g ds and 0.75 mg/ml, respectively under the same process conditions as were used for A. niger HN-2. Process optimization led to nearly 1.8- and 2.2-fold increase in FP and BGL activity, respectively showing promise for cellulase production by A. niger HN-2 at a higher scale of operation. Zymogram analysis revealed two isoforms each for EG and cellobiohydrolase and three isoforms for BGL. Crude cellulase complex produced by A. niger HN-2 exhibited thermostability under acidic conditions showing potential for use in biofuel industry.

  12. Isolation of chromaffin granules.

    PubMed

    Creutz, Carl E

    2010-09-01

    Adrenal medullary chromaffin granules (dense core secretory vesicles) have been a valuable model system for the study of the proteins and membrane components involved in the process of exocytosis. Because of the abundance of chromaffin granules in a readily available tissue source, bovine adrenal medullae, and their unique sedimentation properties, it is possible to obtain large quantities of highly purified granules and granule membranes in a short period of time. Two protocols are presented here for the isolation of chromaffin granules: a basic protocol based on differential centrifugation in an iso-osmotic medium that yields intact chromaffin granules, and an alternate protocol based on sedimentation through a density step gradient that provides a greater yield of more highly purified chromaffin granules. Since in the latter case the granules cannot be returned to a medium of physiological osmolarity without lysis after purification on the step gradient, the alternate protocol is more useful to obtain the granule membranes or contents for further study.

  13. Protocol design for mobile radio group communications over satellite

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Leung, Victor C. M.

    1992-10-01

    The protocol design for a mobile radio service supporting half-duplex push-to-talk voice communications over mobile satellite systems is presented. Two types of protocols are considered, namely, a demand assignment multiple access protocol to assign channels only to those user groups in active sessions of conversations and a signaling protocol to arbitrate contentions among members of the same user group within an assigned channel. It is concluded that the proposed access control protocol makes it possible to improve the throughput capacity of the assigned channel by 65 or 18 percent compared to manual carrier-sensed access without or with collisoin detection, respectively.

  14. Improved method for the isolation, characterization and examination of neuromuscular and toxic properties of selected polypeptide fractions from the crude venom of the Taiwan cobra Naja naja atra.

    PubMed

    Ständker, L; Harvey, A L; Fürst, S; Mathes, I; Forssmann, W G; Escalona de Motta, G; Béress, L

    2012-09-15

    An improved chromatographic method was developed to isolate and purify polypeptides and proteins from the crude venom of the Taiwan cobra Naja naja atra. The procedure devised is simple, easy to reproduce, and enables large scale isolation of almost all polypeptides and proteins in this cobra venom. Six pure polypeptide fractions of the venom were isolated and characterized using gel filtration on Sephadex G50 (medium), ion exchange chromatography on SP-Sephadex C25, desalting on Sephadex G25 (fine) and preparative HPLC on a RPC 18 column. The neuromuscular activity of these fractions was tested on the chick biventer cervicis nerve-muscle preparation and their toxicity (LD(50)) was determined after i.v. administration in mice. Their antinociceptive activity was tested in the mouse abdominal test by i.v. application. Two of these polypeptide samples had major physiological effects: one acted as a cardiotoxin causing reversible myocardial contractures with no effect on muscle twitches elicited by nerve stimulation (NS); another was a neurotoxin that blocked muscle contractions in response to NS and exogenously added acetylcholine. The cardiotoxic fraction was identified as CTX I, a well-known cardiotoxin present in this venom, and the neurotoxin was identified as neurotoxin-α with an LD50 in mice of 0.075 mg/kg.

  15. Viscothionin isolated from Korean mistletoe improves nonalcoholic fatty liver disease via the activation of adenosine monophosphate-activated protein kinase.

    PubMed

    Kim, Sokho; Lee, Dongho; Kim, Jae-Kyung; Kim, Jae-Hun; Park, Jong-Heum; Lee, Ju-Woon; Kwon, Jungkee

    2014-12-10

    The present study investigated the effects of viscothionin, a compound isolated from Korean mistletoe (Viscum album coloratum), on nonalcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD) in both in vitro and in vivo models. A connection was discovered between viscothionin and the adenosine monophosphate-activated protein kinase (AMPK) signaling pathway, which is involved in lipid metabolism. Viscothionin was shown to significantly attenuate lipid accumulation in HepG2 cells treated with oleic acid, which induces lipid accumulation. Moreover, the phosphorylation of AMPK and acetyl-coenzyme A carboxylase in HepG2 cells was increased by viscothionin treatment. Viscothionin was orally administered to high fat diet-induced obese mice and subsequently histopathological analysis associated with AMPK signaling pathways was evaluated. A significant reduction in the extent of hepatic steatosis was revealed in viscothionin-treated obese mice. Thus, viscothionin mediates its beneficial effects on NAFLD via AMPK signaling pathways, suggesting that it may be a potential target for novel NAFLD treatments.

  16. A selective inversion recovery method for the improvement of 23Na NMR spectral resolution in isolated perfused rat hearts.

    PubMed

    Simor, T; Kim, S K; Chu, W J; Pohost, G M; Elgavish, G A

    1993-01-01

    Shift-reagent-aided 23Na NMR spectroscopy allows differentiation of the intracellular (Na(i)) and extracellular sodium (Na(o)) signals. The goal of the present study has been to develop a 23Na NMR spectroscopic method to minimize the intensity of the shift-reagent-shifted Na(o) signal and thus increase Na(i) resolution. This is achieved by a selective inversion recovery (SIR) method which enhances the resolution between the Na(i) and Na(o) peaks in shift-reagent-aided 23Na NMR spectroscopy. The application of SIR with Dy(TTHA), Tm(DOTP), or with low concentrations of Dy(PPP)2 results in both good spectral resolution and physiologically acceptable contractile function in the isolated, perfused rat heart model.

  17. Contrast-enhanced dynamic MRI protocol with improved spatial and time resolution for in vivo microimaging of the mouse with a 1.5-T body scanner and a superconducting surface coil.

    PubMed

    Ginefri, Jean-Christophe; Poirier-Quinot, Marie; Robert, Philippe; Darrasse, Luc

    2005-02-01

    Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) is well suited for small animal model investigations to study various human pathologies. However, the assessment of microscopic information requires a high-spatial resolution (HSR) leading to a critical problem of signal-to-noise ratio limitations in standard whole-body imager. As contrast mechanisms are field dependent, working at high field do not allow to derive MRI criteria that may apply to clinical settings done in standard whole-body systems. In this work, a contrast-enhanced dynamic MRI protocol with improved spatial and time resolution was used to perform in vivo tumor model imaging on the mouse at 1.5 T. The needed sensitivity is provided by the use of a 12-mm superconducting surface coil operating at 77 K. High quality in vivo images were obtained and revealed well-defined internal structures of the tumor. A 3-D HSR sequence with voxels of 59x59x300 microm3 encoded within 6.9 min and a 2-D sequence with subsecond acquisition time and isotropic in-plane resolution of 234 microm were used to analyze the contrast enhancement kinetics in tumoral structures at long and short time scales. This work is a first step to better characterize and differentiate the dynamic behavior of tumoral heterogeneities.

  18. Isolation and identification of phytate-degrading rhizobacteria with activity of improving growth of poplar and Masson pine.

    PubMed

    Li, Gui-E; Wu, Xiao-Qin; Ye, Jian-Ren; Hou, Liang; Zhou, Ai-Dong; Zhao, Liu

    2013-11-01

    A number of soil microorganisms can convert insoluble forms of phosphorus (P) to an accessible form to increase plant yields. Phytate is such a large kind of insoluble organic phosphorus that plants cannot absorb directly in soil, so the objectives of this study were to isolate, screen phytate-degrading rhizobacteria (PDRB), and to select potential microbial inocula that could increase the P uptake by plants. In this study, a total of 24 soil samples were collected from natural habitats of eight poplar and pine planting areas from the eastern to southern China. 17 PDRB strains were preliminarily screened from the rhizosphere soil of poplars and pines by the visible decolorization in the phytate selective medium. The highest ratio of the total diameter (colony + halo zone) to the colony diameter of the isolates was JZ-GX1, 3.85. Afterward, 17 PDRB strains were further determined for their abilities to degrade sodium phytate based on the amount of liberated inorganic P in liquid phytate specific medium. The results showed that the phytase ability of the three highest PDRB strains: JZ-GX1, JZ-DZ1 and JZ-ZJ1 were up to 2.58, 2.36 and 2.24 U/mL, respectively, much better than most of the bacteria reported in previous studies. In the soil-plant experiment, compared to CK, the best three strains of PDRB all could significantly promote growth of poplar and Masson pine under container growing. The three efficient PDRB strains were identified as follow: JZ-GX1, Rahnella aquatilis, both JZ-DZ1 and JZ-ZJ1 being autofluorescent, Pseudomonas fluorescens, by 16S rDNA gene sequencing technology, Biolog Identification System and biological characterization. The present study suggests that the three screened PDRB strains would have great potential application as biological fertilizers in the future.

  19. Comparison of XAD with other dissolved lignin isolation techniques and a compilation of analytical improvements for the analysis of lignin in aquatic settings

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Spencer, Robert G. M.; Aiken, George R.; Dyda, Rachael Y.; Butler, Kenna; Bergamaschi, Brian; Hernes, Peter J.

    2010-01-01

    This manuscript highlights numerous incremental improvements in dissolved lignin measurements over the nearly three decades since CuO oxidation of lignin phenols was first adapted for environmental samples. Intercomparison of the recovery efficiency of three common lignin phenol concentration and isolation techniques, namely XAD, C18with both CH3OH (C18M) and CH3CN (C18A) used independently for priming and elution steps, and tangential flow filtration (TFF) for a range of aquatic samples including fresh, estuarine and marine waters, was undertaken. With freshwater samples XAD8-1, C18M and TFF were all observed to recover ca. 80–90% of the lignin phenols and showed no fractionation effects with respect to diagnostic lignin parameters. With estuarine and marine samples more lignin phenols were recovered with C18M and XAD8-1 than TFF because of the increased prevalence of low molecular weight lignin phenols in marine influenced samples. For marine systems, differences were also observed between diagnostic lignin parameters isolated via TFF vs. C18M and XAD8-1 as a result of the high molecular weight lignin phenols being less degraded than the bulk. Therefore, it is recommended for future studies of marine systems that only one technique is utilized for ease of intercomparison within studies. It is suggested that for studies solely aimed at recovering bulk dissolved lignin in marine environments that C18M and XAD8-1 appear to be more suitable than TFF as they recover more lignin. Our results highlight that, for freshwater samples, all three common lignin phenol concentration and isolation techniques are comparable to whole water concentrated by rotary evaporation (i.e. not isolated) but, that for marine systems, the choice of concentration and isolation techniques needs to be taken into consideration with respect to both lignin concentration and diagnostic parameters. Finally, as the study highlights XAD8-1 to be a suitable method for the isolation of dissolved

  20. Comparison of XAD with other dissolved lignin isolation techniques and a compilation of analytical improvements for the analysis of lignin in aquatic settings

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Spencer, R.G.M.; Aiken, G.R.; Dyda, R.Y.; Butler, K.D.; Bergamaschi, B.A.; Hernes, P.J.

    2010-01-01

    This manuscript highlights numerous incremental improvements in dissolved lignin measurements over the nearly three decades since CuO oxidation of lignin phenols was first adapted for environmental samples. Intercomparison of the recovery efficiency of three common lignin phenol concentration and isolation techniques, namely XAD, C18 with both CH3OH (C18M) and CH3CN (C18A) used independently for priming and elution steps, and tangential flow filtration (TFF) for a range of aquatic samples including fresh, estuarine and marine waters, was undertaken. With freshwater samples XAD8-1, C18M and TFF were all observed to recover ca. 80-90% of the lignin phenols and showed no fractionation effects with respect to diagnostic lignin parameters. With estuarine and marine samples more lignin phenols were recovered with C18M and XAD8-1 than TFF because of the increased prevalence of low molecular weight lignin phenols in marine influenced samples. For marine systems, differences were also observed between diagnostic lignin parameters isolated via TFF vs. C18M and XAD8-1 as a result of the high molecular weight lignin phenols being less degraded than the bulk. Therefore, it is recommended for future studies of marine systems that only one technique is utilized for ease of intercomparison within studies. It is suggested that for studies solely aimed at recovering bulk dissolved lignin in marine environments that C18M and XAD8-1 appear to be more suitable than TFF as they recover more lignin. Our results highlight that, for freshwater samples, all three common lignin phenol concentration and isolation techniques are comparable to whole water concentrated by rotary evaporation (i.e. not isolated) but, that for marine systems, the choice of concentration and isolation techniques needs to be taken into consideration with respect to both lignin concentration and diagnostic parameters. Finally, as the study highlights XAD8-1 to be a suitable method for the isolation of dissolved lignin

  1. Mechanistic evaluation of the pros and cons of digital RT-LAMP for HIV-1 viral load quantification on a microfluidic device and improved efficiency via a two-step digital protocol.

    PubMed

    Sun, Bing; Shen, Feng; McCalla, Stephanie E; Kreutz, Jason E; Karymov, Mikhail A; Ismagilov, Rustem F

    2013-02-05

    Here we used a SlipChip microfluidic device to evaluate the performance of digital reverse transcription-loop-mediated isothermal amplification (dRT-LAMP) for quantification of HIV viral RNA. Tests are needed for monitoring HIV viral load to control the emergence of drug resistance and to diagnose acute HIV infections. In resource-limited settings, in vitro measurement of HIV viral load in a simple format is especially needed, and single-molecule counting using a digital format could provide a potential solution. We showed here that when one-step dRT-LAMP is used for quantification of HIV RNA, the digital count is lower than expected and is limited by the yield of desired cDNA. We were able to overcome the limitations by developing a microfluidic protocol to manipulate many single molecules in parallel through a two-step digital process. In the first step we compartmentalize the individual RNA molecules (based on Poisson statistics) and perform reverse transcription on each RNA molecule independently to produce DNA. In the second step, we perform the LAMP amplification on all individual DNA molecules in parallel. Using this new protocol, we increased the absolute efficiency (the ratio between the concentration calculated from the actual count and the expected concentration) of dRT-LAMP 10-fold, from ∼2% to ∼23%, by (i) using a more efficient reverse transcriptase, (ii) introducing RNase H to break up the DNA:RNA hybrid, and (iii) adding only the BIP primer during the RT step. We also used this two-step method to quantify HIV RNA purified from four patient samples and found that in some cases, the quantification results were highly sensitive to the sequence of the patient's HIV RNA. We learned the following three lessons from this work: (i) digital amplification technologies, including dLAMP and dPCR, may give adequate dilution curves and yet have low efficiency, thereby providing quantification values that underestimate the true concentration. Careful

  2. Adult and adolescent livestock productive asset transfer programmes to improve mental health, economic stability and family and community relationships in rural South Kivu Province, Democratic Republic of Congo: a protocol of a randomised controlled trial

    PubMed Central

    Kohli, Anjalee; Perrin, Nancy A; Remy, Mitima Mpanano; Alfred, Mirindi Bacikenge; Arsene, Kajabika Binkurhorhwa; Nadine, Mwinja Bufole; Heri, Banyewesize Jean; Clovis, Mitima Murhula; Glass, Nancy

    2017-01-01

    Introduction People living in poverty have limited access to traditional financial institutions. Microfinance programmes are designed to meet this gap and show promise in improving income, economic productivity and health. Our Congolese–US community academic research partnership developed two livestock productive asset transfer programmes, Pigs for Peace (PFP) and Rabbits for Resilience (RFR), to address the interlinked health, social and economic well-being of individuals, their families and communities. The community-based randomised controlled trials examine the effectiveness of PFP and RFR to improve health, economic stability, and family and community relationships among male and female adults and adolescents living in 10 rural, postconflict villages of eastern Democratic Republic of Congo. Methods and analysis PFP participants include adult permanent residents of rural villages; adolescent participants in RFR include male and female adolescents 10–15 years old living in the selected rural villages. Participants were randomised to intervention or delayed control group. Participants in PFP completed baseline interview prior to intervention and follow-up interview at 6, 12 and 18 months postintervention. In RFR, participants completed baseline interview prior to intervention and follow-up interview at 6, 12 and 18 months postbaseline. The primary outcome of both trials, the change in baseline mental health distress at 18 months in the intervention group (adults, adolescents) compared to control group, is used to calculate sample size. Ethics and dissemination The Johns Hopkins Medical Institute Internal Review Board approved this protocol. A committee of respected Congolese educators and community members (due to lack of local ethics review board) approved the study. The findings will provide important information on the potential for community-led sustainable development initiatives to build on traditional livelihood (livestock raising, agriculture

  3. Optical protocols for terabit networks

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Chua, P. L.; Lambert, J. L.; Morookian, J. M.; Bergman, L. A.

    1991-01-01

    This paper describes a new fiber-optic local area network technology providing 100X improvement over current technology, has full crossbar funtionality, and inherent data security. Based on optical code-division multiple access (CDMA), using spectral phase encoding/decoding of optical pulses, networking protocols are implemented entirely in the optical domain and thus conventional networking bottlenecks are avoided. Component and system issues for a proof-of-concept demonstration are discussed, as well as issues for a more practical and commercially exploitable system. Possible terrestrial and aerospace applications of this technology, and its impact on other technologies are explored. Some initial results toward realization of this concept are also included.

  4. Incorporating ethical principles into clinical research protocols: a tool for protocol writers and ethics committees

    PubMed Central

    Li, Rebecca H; Wacholtz, Mary C; Barnes, Mark; Boggs, Liam; Callery-D'Amico, Susan; Davis, Amy; Digilova, Alla; Forster, David; Heffernan, Kate; Luthin, Maeve; Lynch, Holly Fernandez; McNair, Lindsay; Miller, Jennifer E; Murphy, Jacquelyn; Van Campen, Luann; Wilenzick, Mark; Wolf, Delia; Woolston, Cris; Aldinger, Carmen; Bierer, Barbara E

    2016-01-01

    A novel Protocol Ethics Tool Kit (‘Ethics Tool Kit’) has been developed by a multi-stakeholder group of the Multi-Regional Clinical Trials Center of Brigham and Women's Hospital and Harvard. The purpose of the Ethics Tool Kit is to facilitate effective recognition, consideration and deliberation of critical ethical issues in clinical trial protocols. The Ethics Tool Kit may be used by investigators and sponsors to develop a dedicated Ethics Section within a protocol to improve the consistency and transparency between clinical trial protocols and research ethics committee reviews. It may also streamline ethics review and may facilitate and expedite the review process by anticipating the concerns of ethics committee reviewers. Specific attention was given to issues arising in multinational settings. With the use of this Tool Kit, researchers have the opportunity to address critical research ethics issues proactively, potentially speeding the time and easing the process to final protocol approval. PMID:26811365

  5. Incorporating ethical principles into clinical research protocols: a tool for protocol writers and ethics committees.

    PubMed

    Li, Rebecca H; Wacholtz, Mary C; Barnes, Mark; Boggs, Liam; Callery-D'Amico, Susan; Davis, Amy; Digilova, Alla; Forster, David; Heffernan, Kate; Luthin, Maeve; Lynch, Holly Fernandez; McNair, Lindsay; Miller, Jennifer E; Murphy, Jacquelyn; Van Campen, Luann; Wilenzick, Mark; Wolf, Delia; Woolston, Cris; Aldinger, Carmen; Bierer, Barbara E

    2016-04-01

    A novel Protocol Ethics Tool Kit ('Ethics Tool Kit') has been developed by a multi-stakeholder group of the Multi-Regional Clinical Trials Center of Brigham and Women's Hospital and Harvard. The purpose of the Ethics Tool Kit is to facilitate effective recognition, consideration and deliberation of critical ethical issues in clinical trial protocols. The Ethics Tool Kit may be used by investigators and sponsors to develop a dedicated Ethics Section within a protocol to improve the consistency and transparency between clinical trial protocols and research ethics committee reviews. It may also streamline ethics review and may facilitate and expedite the review process by anticipating the concerns of ethics committee reviewers. Specific attention was given to issues arising in multinational settings. With the use of this Tool Kit, researchers have the opportunity to address critical research ethics issues proactively, potentially speeding the time and easing the process to final protocol approval.

  6. HOspitals and patients WoRking in Unity (HOW R U?): protocol for a prospective feasibility study of telephone peer support to improve older patients' quality of life after emergency department discharge

    PubMed Central

    Lowthian, Judy A; Lennox, Alyse; Curtis, Andrea; Dale, Jeremy; Browning, Colette; Smit, De Villiers; Wilson, Gillian; O'Brien, Debra; Rosewarne, Cate; Boyd, Lee; Garner, Cath; Cameron, Peter

    2016-01-01

    Introduction Older people presenting to an emergency department (ED) have a higher likelihood of social isolation, loneliness and depression; which are all associated with negative health outcomes and increased health service use, including higher rates of ED attendance. The HOW R U? study aims to ascertain the feasibility and acceptability of a postdischarge telephone support programme for older ED patients following discharge. The intervention, which aims to improve quality of life, will be delivered by hospital-based volunteers. Methods and analysis A multicentre prospective uncontrolled feasibility study will enrol 50 community-dwelling patients aged ≥70 years with symptoms of loneliness or depression who are discharged home within 72 hours from the ED or acute medical ward. Participants will receive weekly supportive telephone calls over a 3-month period from a volunteer-peer. Feasibility will be assessed in terms of recruitment, acceptability of the intervention to participants and level of retention in the programme. Changes in level of loneliness (UCLA-3 item Loneliness Scale), mood (Geriatric Depression Scale-5 item) and health-related quality of life (EQ-5D-5L and EQ-VAS) will also be measured postintervention (3 months). Ethics and dissemination Research ethics and governance committee approval has been granted for this study by each participating centre (reference: 432/15 and 12-09-11-15). Study findings will inform the design and conduct of a future multicentre randomised controlled trial of a postdischarge volunteer-peer telephone support programme to improve social isolation, loneliness or depressive symptoms in older patients. Results will be disseminated through peer-reviewed journal publication, and conference and seminar presentation. Trial registration number ACTRN12615000715572, Pre-results. PMID:27913561

  7. Improved plant growth and Zn accumulation in grains of rice (Oryza sativa L.) by inoculation of endophytic microbes isolated from a Zn Hyperaccumulator, Sedum alfredii H.

    PubMed

    Wang, Yuyan; Yang, Xiaoe; Zhang, Xincheng; Dong, Lanxue; Zhang, Jie; Wei, Yanyan; Feng, Ying; Lu, Lingli

    2014-02-26

    This study is to investigate the possibility of zinc (Zn) biofortification in the grains of rice (Oryza sativa L.) by inoculation of endophytic strains isolated from a Zn hyperaccumulator, Sedum alfredii Hance. Five endophytic strains, Burkholderia sp. SaZR4, Burkholderia sp. SaMR10, Sphingomonas sp. SaMR12, Variovorax sp. SaNR1, and Enterobacter sp. SaCS20, isolated from S. alfredii, were inoculated in the roots of Japonica rice Nipponbare under hydroponic condition. Fluorescence images showed that endophytic strains successfully colonized rice roots after 72 h. Improved root morphology and plant growth of rice was observed after inoculation with endophytic strains especially SaMR12 and SaCS20. Under hydroponic conditions, endophytic inoculation with SaMR12 and SaCS20 increased Zn concentration by 44.4% and 51.1% in shoots, and by 73.6% and 83.4% in roots, respectively. Under soil conditions, endophytic inoculation with SaMR12 and SaCS20 resulted in an increase of grain yields and elevated Zn concentrations by 20.3% and 21.9% in brown rice and by 13.7% and 11.2% in polished rice, respectively. After inoculation of SaMR12 and SaCS20, rhizosphere soils of rice plants contained higher concentration of DTPA-Zn by 10.4% and 20.6%, respectively. In situ micro-X-ray fluorescence mapping of Zn confirmed the elevated Zn content in the rhizosphere zone of rice treated with SaMR12 as compared with the control. The above results suggested that endophytic microbes isolated from S. alfredii could successfully colonize rice roots, resulting in improved root morphology and plant growth, increased Zn bioavailability in rhizosphere soils, and elevated grain yields and Zn densities in grains.

  8. A Randomized Controlled Trial Protocol to Evaluate the Effectiveness of an Integrated Care Management Approach to Improve Adherence Among HIV-Infected Patients in Routine Clinical Care: Rationale and Design

    PubMed Central

    Fredericksen, Rob J; Church, Anna; Harrington, Anna; Ciechanowski, Paul; Magnani, Jennifer; Nasby, Kari; Brown, Tyler; Dhanireddy, Shireesha; Harrington, Robert D; Lober, William B; Simoni, Jane; Safren, Stevan A; Edwards, Todd C; Patrick, Donald L; Saag, Michael S; Crane, Paul K; Kitahata, Mari M

    2016-01-01

    Background Adherence to antiretroviral medications is a key determinant of clinical outcomes. Many adherence intervention trials investigated the effects of time-intensive or costly interventions that are not feasible in most clinical care settings. Objective We set out to evaluate a collaborative care approach as a feasible intervention applicable to patients in clinical care including those with mental illness and/or substance use issues. Methods We developed a randomized controlled trial (RCT) investigating an integrated, clinic-based care management approach to improve clinical outcomes that could be integrated into the clinical care setting. This is based on the routine integration and systematic follow-up of a clinical assessment of patient-reported outcomes targeting adherence, depression, and substance use, and adapts previously developed and tested care management approaches. The primary health coach or care management role is provided by clinic case managers allowing the intervention to be generalized to other human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) clinics that have case managers. We used a stepped-care approach to target interventions to those at greatest need who are most likely to benefit rather than to everyone to maintain feasibility in a busy clinical care setting. Results The National Institutes of Health funded this study and had no role in study design, data collection, or decisions regarding whether or not to submit manuscripts for publication. This trial is currently underway, enrollment was completed in 2015, and follow-up time still accruing. First results are expected to be ready for publication in early 2017. Discussion This paper describes the protocol for an ongoing clinical trial including the design and the rationale for key methodological decisions. There is a need to identify best practices for implementing evidence-based collaborative care models that are effective and feasible in clinical care. Adherence efficacy trials have not led to

  9. Improvement of isolated rat pancreatic islets function by combination of cerium oxide nanoparticles/sodium selenite through reduction of oxidative stress.

    PubMed

    Pourkhalili, Nazila; Hosseini, Asieh; Nili-Ahmadabadi, Amir; Rahimifard, Mahban; Navaei-Nigjeh, Mona; Hassani, Shokoufeh; Baeeri, Maryam; Abdollahi, Mohammad

    2012-07-01

    Insulin Dependent Diabetes Mellitus (IDDM) is a disease with high incidence with no pure cure therapy yet. In most of cases, these patients need pancreatic islets transplantation that is not completely successful because of oxidative stress happening during isolation and transplantation procedures. In the present study, effective factors in transplantation procedure such as viability, insulin secretion, production of reactive oxygen molecules (ROM), and mitochondrial energy as ATP/ADP ratio were examined in the isolated islets exposed to sodium selenite (Na₂SeO₃; 0 30 nmol/L), metal form of cerium oxide (100 nm), cerium oxide nanoparticles (100 nm) and combination of Na₂SeO₃ (30 nmol/L)/cerium oxide nanoparticles (100 nm) in a time course (1, 2, 4 and 6 days posttreatment) manner. The results showed a significant increase of cells viability, secretion of insulin, and ATP/ADP ratio and a reduction in ROM by use of sodium selenite, cerium oxide nanoparticles, and especially combination of cerium oxide nanoparticles/sodium selenite. Interestingly, not only no improvement was found with metal form of cerium oxide but also deterioration occurred in tested markers. Results suggest that pretreatment with combination of cerium oxide nanoparticles/sodium selenite can improve transplantation outcome and graft function by control of oxidative stress damage.

  10. Characterization of a salt-tolerant aminopeptidase from marine Bacillus licheniformis SWJS33 that improves hydrolysis and debittering efficiency for soy protein isolate.

    PubMed

    Lei, Fenfen; Zhao, Qiangzhong; Sun-Waterhouse, Dongxiao; Zhao, Mouming

    2017-01-01

    An aminopeptidase was isolated from the marine Bacillus licheniformis SWJS33 (BLAP) and purified. According to the tandem mass spectrometry, the enzyme displayed 11% amino acid identity with the aminopeptidase from Bacillus (gi|496687392). BLAP exhibited maximum activity at 60°C and pH 8.0-8.5 and had a molecular mass of 100kDa. The presence of NaCl enabled 50% improvement of enzyme activity with 10-15% NaCl being the best. The observed inactivation by EDTA and bestatin and activation by Co(2+) and Ag(+) indicated that the obtained enzyme was a metalloaminopeptidase. Such an aminopeptidase could further improve the hydrolysis degree of soy protein isolate hydrolysates catalyzed by papain, Alcalase 2.4L or Flavourzyme 500MG from 8.5%, 9.5% or 14.4-18.8%, 18.7% or 20.1%, respectively, while decreasing the bitter intensity score of the SPI hydrolysates catalyzed by Alcalase 2.4L from 3.6 to 0.4.

  11. Nucleic acid isolation process

    DOEpatents

    Longmire, Jonathan L.; Lewis, Annette K.; Hildebrand, Carl E.

    1990-01-01

    A method is provided for isolating DNA from eukaryotic cell and flow sorted chromosomes. When DNA is removed from chromosome and cell structure, detergent and proteolytic digestion products remain with the DNA. These products can be removed with organic extraction, but the process steps associated with organic extraction reduce the size of DNA fragments available for experimental use. The present process removes the waste products by dialyzing a solution containing the DNA against a solution containing polyethylene glycol (PEG). The waste products dialyze into the PEG leaving isolated DNA. The remaining DNA has been prepared with fragments containing more than 160 kb. The isolated DNA has been used in conventional protocols without affect on the protocol.

  12. Nucleic acid isolation

    DOEpatents

    Longmire, J.L.; Lewis, A.K.; Hildebrand, C.E.

    1988-01-21

    A method is provided for isolating DNA from eukaryotic cell and flow sorted chromosomes. When DNA is removed from chromosome and cell structure, detergent and proteolytic digestion products remain with the DNA. These products can be removed with organic extraction, but the process steps associated with organic extraction reduces the size of DNA fragments available for experimental use. The present process removes the waste products by dialyzing a solution containing the DNA against a solution containing polyethylene glycol (PEG). The waste products dialyze into the PEG leaving isolated DNA. The remaining DNA has been prepared with fragments containing more than 160 kb. The isolated DNA has been used in conventional protocols without effect on the protocol.

  13. Rapid isolation, reliable characterization, and water solubility improvement of polymethoxyflavones from cold-pressed mandarin essential oil.

    PubMed

    Russo, Marina; Rigano, Francesca; Arigò, Adriana; Sciarrone, Danilo; Calabrò, Maria Luisa; Farnetti, Sara; Dugo, Paola; Mondello, Luigi

    2016-06-01

    Polymethoxyflavones possess many biological properties, as lipid-lowering, hypoglycaemic, anti-inflammatory, antioxidant, and anticancer activities, therefore, they may be employed as nutraceuticals or therapeutic agents. The scarcity of pure polymethoxyflavones on the market as well as their low water solubility limited in vivo studies and the use of polymethoxyflavones as food or pharmaceutical supplements. Since mandarin peels are a rich source of polymethoxyflavones, tangeretin, nobiletin, sinensetin, tetra-O-methyl scutellarein, and heptamethoxyflavone were purified from a nonvolatile residue of a cold-pressed mandarin essential oil using a multidimensional preparative liquid chromatographic system coupled with a photodiode array detector and a single quadrupole mass spectrometer. A new prototype, consisting of a nano-liquid chromatography system coupled with an electron ionization mass spectrometer, was used for the characterization of the pure isolated molecules. Finally, due to the collection of highly pure nobiletin and tangeretin, the ability of 2-hydroxypropyl-β-cyclodextrin to enhance the water solubility of both polymethoxyflavones was evaluated by phase solubility studies and Job's plot method.

  14. Isolation of dipeptidyl peptidase IV (DP 4) isoforms from porcine kidney by preparative isoelectric focusing to improve crystallization.

    PubMed

    Wagner, Leona; Wermann, Michael; Rosche, Fred; Rahfeld, Jens-Ulrich; Hoffmann, Torsten; Demuth, Hans-Ulrich

    2011-07-01

    Abstract In the present studies we resolved the post-translational microheterogeneity of purified porcine dipeptidyl peptidase IV (DP 4) from kidney cortex. Applying SDS-homogeneous DP 4 onto an analytical agarose isoelectric focusing (IEF) gel, pH 4-6, activity staining resulted in at least 17 isoforms between pH 4.8-6.0. These could be separated into fractions with only two to six isoforms by means of preparative liquid-phase IEF, using a Rotofor cell. Starting off with three parallel Rotofor runs under the same conditions at pH 5-6, the fractions were pooled according to the specific activity of DP 4, pH and analytical IEF profile, and further refractionated without any additional ampholytes. Since excessive dilution of ampholytes and proteins was kept to the minimum, a second refractionation step could be introduced, resulting in pH gradients between 0.022 and 0.028 pH increments per fraction. By performing two consecutive refractionation steps, the high resolution necessary for the separation of DP 4 isoforms could be achieved. This represents an alternative method if isolation of isoforms with similar pI's results in precipitation and denaturation in presence of a narrow pH range. Furthermore, it demonstrates that preparative IEF is a powerful tool to resolve post-translational microheterogeneity of a purified protein required for crystallization processing.

  15. Native arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi isolated from a saline habitat improved maize antioxidant systems and plant tolerance to salinity.

    PubMed

    Estrada, Beatriz; Aroca, Ricardo; Barea, José Miguel; Ruiz-Lozano, Juan Manuel

    2013-03-01

    High soil salinity is a serious problem for crop production because most of the cultivated plants are salt sensitive, which is also the case for the globally important crop plant maize. Salinity stress leads to secondary oxidative stress in plants and a correlation between antioxidant capacity and salt tolerance has been demonstrated in several plant species. The plant antioxidant capacity may be enhanced by arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi (AMF) and it has been proposed that AM symbiosis is more effective with native than with collection AMF species. Thus, we investigated whether native AMF isolated from a dry and saline environment can help maize plants to overcome salt stress better than AMF from a culture collection and whether protection against oxidative stress is involved in such an effect. Maize plants inoculated with three native AMF showed higher efficiency of photosystem II and stomatal conductance, which surely decreased photorespiration and ROS production. Indeed, the accumulation of hydrogen peroxide, the oxidative damage to lipids and the membrane electrolyte leakage in these AM plants were significantly lower than in non-mycorrhizal plants or in plants inoculated with the collection AMF. The activation of antioxidant enzymes such as superoxide dismutase or catalase also accounted for these effects.

  16. Protocols for quantum binary voting

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Thapliyal, Kishore; Sharma, Rishi Dutt; Pathak, Anirban

    Two new protocols for quantum binary voting are proposed. One of the proposed protocols is designed using a standard scheme for controlled deterministic secure quantum communication (CDSQC), and the other one is designed using the idea of quantum cryptographic switch, which uses a technique known as permutation of particles. A few possible alternative approaches to accomplish the same task (quantum binary voting) have also been discussed. Security of the proposed protocols is analyzed. Further, the efficiencies of the proposed protocols are computed, and are compared with that of the existing protocols. The comparison has established that the proposed protocols are more efficient than the existing protocols.

  17. Efficient model checking of network authentication protocol based on SPIN

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tan, Zhi-hua; Zhang, Da-fang; Miao, Li; Zhao, Dan

    2013-03-01

    Model checking is a very useful technique for verifying the network authentication protocols. In order to improve the efficiency of modeling and verification on the protocols with the model checking technology, this paper first proposes a universal formalization description method of the protocol. Combined with the model checker SPIN, the method can expediently verify the properties of the protocol. By some modeling simplified strategies, this paper can model several protocols efficiently, and reduce the states space of the model. Compared with the previous literature, this paper achieves higher degree of automation, and better efficiency of verification. Finally based on the method described in the paper, we model and verify the Privacy and Key Management (PKM) authentication protocol. The experimental results show that the method of model checking is effective, which is useful for the other authentication protocols.

  18. Markedly improved outcomes and acceptable toxicity in adolescents and young adults with acute lymphoblastic leukemia following treatment with a pediatric protocol: a phase II study by the Japan Adult Leukemia Study Group.

    PubMed

    Hayakawa, F; Sakura, T; Yujiri, T; Kondo, E; Fujimaki, K; Sasaki, O; Miyatake, J; Handa, H; Ueda, Y; Aoyama, Y; Takada, S; Tanaka, Y; Usui, N; Miyawaki, S; Suenobu, S; Horibe, K; Kiyoi, H; Ohnishi, K; Miyazaki, Y; Ohtake, S; Kobayashi, Y; Matsuo, K; Naoe, T

    2014-10-17

    The superiority of the pediatric protocol for adolescents with acute lymphoblastic leukemia (ALL) has already been demonstrated, however, its efficacy in young adults remains unclear. The ALL202-U protocol was conducted to examine the efficacy and feasibility of a pediatric protocol in adolescents and young adults (AYAs) with BCR-ABL-negative ALL. Patients aged 15-24 years (n=139) were treated with the same protocol used for pediatric B-ALL. The primary objective of this study was to assess the disease-free survival (DFS) rate and its secondary aims were to assess toxicity, the complete remission (CR) rate and the overall survival (OS) rate. The CR rate was 94%. The 5-year DFS and OS rates were 67% (95% confidence interval (CI) 58-75%) and 73% (95% CI 64-80%), respectively. Severe adverse events were observed at a frequency that was similar to or lower than that in children treated with the same protocol. Only insufficient maintenance therapy significantly worsened the DFS (hazard ratio 5.60, P<0.001). These results indicate that this protocol may be a feasible and highly effective treatment for AYA with BCR-ABL-negative ALL.

  19. Skeletal muscle satellite cells: background and methods for isolation and analysis in a primary culture system.

    PubMed

    Danoviz, Maria Elena; Yablonka-Reuveni, Zipora

    2012-01-01

    Repair of adult skeletal muscle depends on satellite cells, myogenic stem cells located between the basal lamina and the plasmalemma of the myofiber. Standardized protocols for the isolation and culture of satellite cells are key tools for understanding cell autonomous and extrinsic factors that regulate their performance. Knowledge gained from such studies can contribute important insights to developing strategies for the improvement of muscle repair following trauma and in muscle wasting disorders. This chapter provides an introduction to satellite cell biology and further describes the basic protocol used in our laboratory to isolate and culture satellite cells from adult skeletal muscle. The cell culture conditions detailed herein support proliferation and differentiation of satellite cell progeny and the development of reserve cells, which are thought to reflect the in vivo self-renewal ability of satellite cells. Additionally, this chapter describes our standard immunostaining protocol that allows the characterization of satellite cell progeny by the temporal expression of characteristic transcription factors and structural proteins associated with different stages of myogenic progression. Although emphasis is given here to the isolation and characterization of satellite cells from mouse hindlimb muscles, the protocols are suitable for other muscle types (such as diaphragm and extraocular muscles) and for muscles from other species, including chicken and rat. Altogether, the basic protocols described are straightforward and facilitate the study of diverse aspects of skeletal muscle stem cells.

  20. Improving the well-being of men by Evaluating and Addressing the Gastrointestinal Late Effects (EAGLE) of radical treatment for prostate cancer: study protocol for a mixed-method implementation project

    PubMed Central

    Taylor, Sophia; Demeyin, Weyinmi; Muls, Ann; Ferguson, Catherine; Farnell, Damian J J; Cohen, David; Andreyev, Jervoise; Green, John; Smith, Lesley; Ahmedzai, Sam; Pickett, Sara; Nelson, Annmarie; Staffurth, John

    2016-01-01

    Introduction Radiotherapy treatment for prostate cancer can cause bowel problems, which may lead to severe difficulties for cancer survivors including limiting travel, work or socialising. These symptoms can appear at any time following radiotherapy. This study focuses on the early identification and protocol-based management of effects known to cause long-term, or even permanent, changes to the well-being of prostate cancer survivors. The rationale of this study is to improve the care offered to men and their families following pelvic radiotherapy for prostate cancer. Method and analysis Implementation research methodology will be used to adopt a multicomponent intervention at three UK centres. The intervention package comprises a standardised clinical assessment of relevant symptoms in oncology outpatient clinics and rapid referral to an enhanced gastroenterological service for patients identified with bowel problems. Gastroenterology staff will be trained to use an expert-practice algorithm of targeted gastroenterology investigations and treatments. The evaluation of the intervention and its embedding within local practices will be conducted using a mixed-methods design. The effect of the new service will be measured in terms of the following outcomes: acceptability to staff and patients; quality of life; symptom control and cost-effectiveness. Data collection will take place at baseline, 6 months (±2 months), and 12 months (±2 months) after entry into the study. Ethics and dissemination The study has ethical approval from the North West-Liverpool East Research Ethics Committee and the appropriate NHS governance clearance. All participants provide written informed consent. The study team aim to publish the results of the study in peer-reviewed journals as well as at national and international conferences. Trial registration number UKCRN16974 PMID:27697869

  1. Improved Enzyme Catalytic Characteristics upon Glutaraldehyde Cross-Linking of Alginate Entrapped Xylanase Isolated from Aspergillus flavus MTCC 9390

    PubMed Central

    Bhushan, Bharat; Pal, Ajay; Jain, Veena

    2015-01-01

    Purified fungal xylanase was entrapped in alginate beads. Its further cross-linking using glutaraldehyde resulted in large enzyme aggregates which may function as both a catalyst and a support material for numerous substrate molecules. Enzyme cross-linking presented a negative impact on enzyme leaching during repeated washings and recovery of enzyme activity was substantial after twelve cycles of usage. The entrapment followed by cross-linking doubled the total bound activity and also greatly improved the enzyme stability at extreme chemical environment. The wide pH stability, better thermo- and storage stability, lowered Km value, and protection from some metal ions are salient achievements of present immobilization. The study shows the efficacy, durability, and sustainability of immobilized catalytic system which could be efficiently used for various juice processing operations. PMID:26347814

  2. Second induction in pediatric patients with recurrent acute lymphoid leukemia using DFCI-ALL protocols.

    PubMed

    Dalle, Jean-Hugues; Moghrabi, Albert; Rousseau, Pierre; Leclerc, Jean-Marie; Barrette, Stephane; Bernstein, Mark L; Champagne, Josette; David, Michele; Demers, Jocelyn; Duval, Michel; Hume, Heather; Meyer, Patrick; Champagne, Martin A

    2005-02-01

    Between 15% and 30% of children with acute lymphoblastic leukemia (ALL) experience disease recurrence. With the possible exception of patients presenting with late isolated extramedullary relapse, induction of second complete remission (CR) is employed as a stepping stone to allogeneic hematopoietic stem cell transplantation (HSCT). The authors report their institutional experience in the management of children with recurrent ALL using the Dana Farber Cancer Institute (DFCI) ALL protocol in patients treated initially with that same protocol. Successful reinduction was followed by allogeneic HSCT when possible. Between April 1986 and May 2003, 34 patients with recurrent ALL, treated at initial diagnosis with DFCI-ALL protocol therapy, were given the same protocol as repeat induction chemotherapy. The median age was 4.6 years at diagnosis and 7.1 years at recurrence. Median duration of CR1 was 30.3 months. Second CR was obtained in 29 (85%) patients. Twenty went on to allogeneic HSCT; 10 of them currently remain in CR. Two additional patients treated with chemotherapy without HSCT are also in continuous CR2. Overall, 13 (38%) of the 34 patients are alive with a median follow-up of 105 months. There were no toxic deaths due to the reinduction therapy. One child died of cardiac failure after autologous HSCT. The treatment of children with recurrent ALL using the DFCI-ALL protocol induction regimen after initial use of the same protocol is associated with a high rate of second CR with no excess toxicity. However, the overall prognosis in these patients remains unsatisfactory and needs to be improved.

  3. WOODSTOVE DURABILITY TESTING PROTOCOL

    EPA Science Inventory

    The report discusses the development of an accelerated laboratory test to simulate in-home woodstove aging and degradation. nown as a stress test, the protocol determines the long-term durability of woodstove models in a 1- to 2-week time frame. wo avenues of research have been t...

  4. Simple wavelength assignment protocol

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Suryaputra, Stephen; Touch, Joseph D.; Bannister, Joseph A.

    2000-10-01

    IP routers can be coupled with wavelength-selective optical cross- connects to support existing Internet infrastructure in a wavelength division multiplexing (WDM) optical network. Because optical wavelength routing is transparent to IP, packets can bypass traditional forwarding and pass directly through the optical cross-connect, resulting in very high throughput and low delay routing. This approach shares features with label switching, but wavelengths are much more scarce resource than labels. Because optical switches have larger switching times than electronic switches, and wavelength conversions are expensive, wavelength label swapping is not easily done. Wavelength label assignments must consider these limitations to be practical in an optical environment. The performance of an instance of this approach, called Packet over Wavelengths (POW) has been simulated and studied. A new signaling protocol, Simple Wavelength Assignment Protocol (SWAP) is devised to be POW signaling protocol. SWAP takes into account the optical device limitations, and is designed to minimize wavelength conversion, utilize wavelengths with the merging of flows, and reduce the reconfiguration of optical switches. SWAP, to our knowledge, is the first approach to combine signaling and wavelength assignment in an on- line protocol. This paper describes high level SWAP design challenges, decision, and overhead.

  5. Advanced Quantum Communication Protocols

    DTIC Science & Technology

    2005-12-17

    theoretically optimal configuration, and compared hyperentangled and multi-pair encoding. Table of Contents: Summary 2 Relativistic Quantum Cryptography ( RQC ...error rates, for 4- and 6-state RQC 4. Intensity pulses to generate uniform time-interval probability distributions 5. Schematic of photon-arrival...Protocols: Scientific Progress and Accomplishments “Relativistic” Quantum Cryptography We have implemented relativistic quantum cryptography ( RQC ) using

  6. What's a Research Protocol?

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Holloway, Philip J; Mooney, Jeanette A

    2004-01-01

    A clinical trial needs a carefully structured, written plan in order not only to ensure its smooth running and successful conclusion but also to gain the compulsory agreement of an ethical committee. Such a plan is called a protocol. It consists of several stages. These are: (1) An introduction; (2) A statement of aims, objectives, hypotheses and…

  7. The Master Protocol Concept.

    PubMed

    Redman, Mary W; Allegra, Carmen J

    2015-10-01

    During the past decade, biomedical technologies have undergone an explosive evolution-from the publication of the first complete human genome in 2003, after more than a decade of effort and at a cost of hundreds of millions of dollars-to the present time, where a complete genomic sequence can be available in less than a day and at a small fraction of the cost of the original sequence. The widespread availability of next-generation genomic sequencing has opened the door to the development of precision oncology. The need to test multiple new targeted agents both alone and in combination with other targeted therapies, as well as classic cytotoxic agents, demands the development of novel therapeutic platforms (particularly Master Protocols) capable of efficiently and effectively testing multiple targeted agents or targeted therapeutic strategies in relatively small patient subpopulations. Here, we describe the Master Protocol concept, with a focus on the expected gains and complexities of the use of this design. An overview of Master Protocols currently active or in development is provided along with a more extensive discussion of the Lung Master Protocol (Lung-MAP study).

  8. Improved response of growth hormone to growth hormone-releasing hormone and reversible chronic thyroiditis after hydrocortisone replacement in isolated adrenocorticotropic hormone deficiency.

    PubMed

    Inagaki, Miho; Sato, Haruhiro; Miyamoto, Yoshiyasu; Hirukawa, Takashi; Sawaya, Asako; Miyakogawa, Takayo; Tatsumi, Ryoko; Kakuta, Takatoshi

    2009-07-20

    We report a 44-year-old Japanese man who showed a reversible blunted response of growth hormone (GH) to GH-releasing hormone (GRH) stimulation test and reversible chronic thyroiditis accompanied by isolated ACTH deficiency. He was admitted to our hospital because of severe general malaise, hypotension, and hypoglycemia. He showed repeated attacks of hypoglycemia, and his serum sodium level gradually decreased. Finally, he was referred to the endocrinology division, where his adrenocorticotropic hormone (ACTH) and cortisol values were found to be low, and his GH level was slightly elevated. An increased value of thyroid stimulating hormone (TSH) and decreased values of free triidothyronine and free thyroxine were observed along with anti-thyroglobulin antibody, suggesting chronic thyroiditis. Pituitary stimulation tests revealed a blunted response of ACTH and cortisol to corticotropin-releasing hormone, and a blunted response of GH to GRH. Hydrocortisone replacement was then started, and this improved the patient's general condition. His hypothyroid state gradually ameliorated and his titer of anti-thyroglobulin antibody decreased to the normal range. Pituitary function was re-evaluated with GRH stimulation test under a maintenance dose of 20 mg/day hydrocortisone and showed a normal response of GH to GRH. It is suggested that re-evaluation of pituitary and thyroid function is useful for diagnosing isolated ACTH deficiency after starting a maintenance dose of hydrocortisone in order to avoid unnecessary replacement of thyroid hormone.

  9. Study ProtocolImproving Access to Kidney Transplants (IMPAKT): A detailed account of a qualitative study investigating barriers to transplant for Australian Indigenous people with end-stage kidney disease

    PubMed Central

    Devitt, Jeannie; Cass, Alan; Cunningham, Joan; Preece, Cilla; Anderson, Kate; Snelling, Paul

    2008-01-01

    large cohort of Indigenous participants provided evaluative comment on their health services in relation to dialysis and transplant. Additionally, the data includes extensive parallel commentary from a cohort of specialists, nurses and other staff. The study considers a ‘patient journey’ to transplant within a diverse range of Australian treatment centre/workplace settings. The IMPAKT Interview study protocol may contribute to improvements in multi-disciplinary, flexible design health services research with hard to reach or vulnerable populations in Australia and elsewhere. PMID:18248667

  10. Β-blockers treatment of cardiac surgery patients enhances isolation and improves phenotype of cardiosphere-derived cells.

    PubMed

    Chimenti, Isotta; Pagano, Francesca; Cavarretta, Elena; Angelini, Francesco; Peruzzi, Mariangela; Barretta, Antonio; Greco, Ernesto; De Falco, Elena; Marullo, Antonino G M; Sciarretta, Sebastiano; Biondi-Zoccai, Giuseppe; Frati, Giacomo

    2016-11-14

    Β-blockers (BB) are a primary treatment for chronic heart disease (CHD), resulting in prognostic and symptomatic benefits. Cardiac cell therapy represents a promising regenerative treatment and, for autologous cell therapy, the patients clinical history may correlate with the biology of resident progenitors and the quality of the final cell product. This study aimed at uncovering correlations between clinical records of biopsy-donor CHD patients undergoing cardiac surgery and the corresponding yield and phenotype of cardiospheres (CSs) and CS-derived cells (CDCs), which are a clinically relevant population for cell therapy, containing progenitors. We describe a statistically significant association between BB therapy and improved CSs yield and CDCs phenotype. We show that BB-CDCs have a reduced fibrotic-like CD90 + subpopulation, with reduced expression of collagen-I and increased expression of cardiac genes, compared to CDCs from non-BB donors. Moreover BB-CDCs had a distinctive microRNA expression profile, consistent with reduced fibrotic features (miR-21, miR-29a/b/c downregulation), and enhanced regenerative potential (miR-1, miR-133, miR-101 upregulation) compared to non-BB. In vitro adrenergic pharmacological treatments confirmed cytoprotective and anti-fibrotic effects of β1-blocker on CDCs. This study shows anti-fibrotic and pro-commitment effects of BB treatment on endogenous cardiac reparative cells, and suggests adjuvant roles of β-blockers in cell therapy applications.

  11. Β-blockers treatment of cardiac surgery patients enhances isolation and improves phenotype of cardiosphere-derived cells

    PubMed Central

    Chimenti, Isotta; Pagano, Francesca; Cavarretta, Elena; Angelini, Francesco; Peruzzi, Mariangela; Barretta, Antonio; Greco, Ernesto; De Falco, Elena; Marullo, Antonino G. M.; Sciarretta, Sebastiano; Biondi-Zoccai, Giuseppe; Frati, Giacomo

    2016-01-01

    Β-blockers (BB) are a primary treatment for chronic heart disease (CHD), resulting in prognostic and symptomatic benefits. Cardiac cell therapy represents a promising regenerative treatment and, for autologous cell therapy, the patients clinical history may correlate with the biology of resident progenitors and the quality of the final cell product. This study aimed at uncovering correlations between clinical records of biopsy-donor CHD patients undergoing cardiac surgery and the corresponding yield and phenotype of cardiospheres (CSs) and CS-derived cells (CDCs), which are a clinically relevant population for cell therapy, containing progenitors. We describe a statistically significant association between BB therapy and improved CSs yield and CDCs phenotype. We show that BB-CDCs have a reduced fibrotic-like CD90 + subpopulation, with reduced expression of collagen-I and increased expression of cardiac genes, compared to CDCs from non-BB donors. Moreover BB-CDCs had a distinctive microRNA expression profile, consistent with reduced fibrotic features (miR-21, miR-29a/b/c downregulation), and enhanced regenerative potential (miR-1, miR-133, miR-101 upregulation) compared to non-BB. In vitro adrenergic pharmacological treatments confirmed cytoprotective and anti-fibrotic effects of β1-blocker on CDCs. This study shows anti-fibrotic and pro-commitment effects of BB treatment on endogenous cardiac reparative cells, and suggests adjuvant roles of β-blockers in cell therapy applications. PMID:27841293

  12. Reliable multicasting in the Xpress Transport Protocol

    SciTech Connect

    Atwood, J.W.; Catrina, O.; Fenton, J.; Strayer, W.T.

    1996-12-01

    The Xpress Transport Protocol (XTP) is designed to meet the needs of distributed, real-time, and multimedia systems. This paper describes the genesis of recent improvements to XTP that provide mechanisms for reliable management of multicast groups, and gives details of the mechanisms used.

  13. Effect of Dimethyl Sulfoxide and Melatonin on the Isolation of Human Primary Hepatocytes.

    PubMed

    Solanas, Estela; Sostres, Carlos; Serrablo, Alejandro; García-Gil, Agustín; García, Joaquín J; Aranguren, Francisco J; Jiménez, Pilar; Hughes, Robin D; Serrano, María T

    2015-01-01

    The availability of fully functional human hepatocytes is critical for progress in human hepatocyte transplantation and the development of bioartificial livers and in vitro liver systems. However, the cell isolation process impairs the hepatocyte status and determines the number of viable cells that can be obtained. This study aimed to evaluate the effects of using dimethyl sulfoxide (DMSO) and melatonin in the human hepatocyte isolation protocol. Human hepatocytes were isolated from liver pieces resected from 10 patients undergoing partial hepatectomy. Each piece was dissected into 2 equally sized pieces and randomized, in 5 of 10 isolations, to perfusion with 1% DMSO-containing perfusion buffer or buffer also containing 5 mM melatonin using the 2-step collagenase perfusion technique (experiment 1), and in the other 5 isolations to standard perfusion or perfusion including 1% DMSO (experiment 2). Tissues perfused with DMSO yielded 70.6% more viable hepatocytes per gram of tissue (p = 0.076), with a 26.1% greater albumin production (p < 0.05) than those perfused with control buffer. Melatonin did not significantly affect (p > 0.05) any of the studied parameters, but cell viability, dehydrogenase activity, albumin production, urea secretion, and 7-ethoxycoumarin O-deethylase activity were slightly higher in cells isolated with melatonin-containing perfusion buffer compared to those isolated with DMSO. In conclusion, addition of 1% DMSO to the hepatocyte isolation protocol could improve the availability and functionality of hepatocytes for transplantation, but further studies are needed to clarify the mechanisms involved.

  14. Are isolated wetlands isolated?

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Smith, Loren M.; Euliss, Ned H.; Haukos, David A.

    2011-01-01

    While federal regulations during the past 10 years have treated isolated wetlands as unconnected to aquatic resources protected by the Clean Water Act, they provide critical ecosystem services to society that extend well beyond their wetland boundaries. The authors offer well-documented examples from the scientific literature on some of the ecosystem services provided by isolated wetlands to society and other ecosystems.

  15. Controlled Reperfusion Strategies Improve Cardiac Hemodynamic Recovery after Warm Global Ischemia in an Isolated, Working Rat Heart Model of Donation after Circulatory Death (DCD).

    PubMed

    Farine, Emilie; Niederberger, Petra; Wyss, Rahel K; Méndez-Carmona, Natalia; Gahl, Brigitta; Fiedler, Georg M; Carrel, Thierry P; Tevaearai Stahel, Hendrik T; Longnus, Sarah L

    2016-01-01

    Aims: Donation after circulatory death (DCD) could improve cardiac graft availability, which is currently insufficient to meet transplant demand. However, DCD organs undergo an inevitable period of warm ischemia and most cardioprotective approaches can only be applied at reperfusion (procurement) for ethical reasons. We investigated whether modifying physical conditions at reperfusion, using four different strategies, effectively improves hemodynamic recovery after warm ischemia. Methods and Results: Isolated hearts of male Wistar rats were perfused in working-mode for 20 min, subjected to 27 min global ischemia (37°C), and 60 min reperfusion (n = 43). Mild hypothermia (30°C, 10 min), mechanical postconditioning (MPC; 2x 30 s reperfusion/30 s ischemia), hypoxia (no O2, 2 min), or low pH (pH 6.8-7.4, 3 min) was applied at reperfusion and compared with controls (i.e., no strategy). After 60 min reperfusion, recovery of left ventricular work (developed pressure(*)heart rate; expressed as percent of pre-ischemic value) was significantly greater for mild hypothermia (62 ± 7%), MPC (65 ± 8%) and hypoxia (61 ± 11%; p < 0.05 for all), but not for low pH (45 ± 13%), vs. controls (44 ± 7%). Increased hemodynamic recovery was associated with greater oxygen consumption (mild hypothermia, MPC) and coronary perfusion (mild hypothermia, MPC, hypoxia), and with reduced markers of necrosis (mild hypothermia, MPC, hypoxia) and mitochondrial damage (mild hypothermia, hypoxia). Conclusions: Brief modifications in physical conditions at reperfusion, such as hypothermia, mechanical postconditioning, and hypoxia, improve post-ischemic hemodynamic function in our model of DCD. Cardioprotective reperfusion strategies applied at graft procurement could improve DCD graft recovery and limit further injury; however, optimal clinical approaches remain to be characterized.

  16. Controlled Reperfusion Strategies Improve Cardiac Hemodynamic Recovery after Warm Global Ischemia in an Isolated, Working Rat Heart Model of Donation after Circulatory Death (DCD)

    PubMed Central

    Farine, Emilie; Niederberger, Petra; Wyss, Rahel K.; Méndez-Carmona, Natalia; Gahl, Brigitta; Fiedler, Georg M.; Carrel, Thierry P.; Tevaearai Stahel, Hendrik T.; Longnus, Sarah L.

    2016-01-01

    Aims: Donation after circulatory death (DCD) could improve cardiac graft availability, which is currently insufficient to meet transplant demand. However, DCD organs undergo an inevitable period of warm ischemia and most cardioprotective approaches can only be applied at reperfusion (procurement) for ethical reasons. We investigated whether modifying physical conditions at reperfusion, using four different strategies, effectively improves hemodynamic recovery after warm ischemia. Methods and Results: Isolated hearts of male Wistar rats were perfused in working-mode for 20 min, subjected to 27 min global ischemia (37°C), and 60 min reperfusion (n = 43). Mild hypothermia (30°C, 10 min), mechanical postconditioning (MPC; 2x 30 s reperfusion/30 s ischemia), hypoxia (no O2, 2 min), or low pH (pH 6.8–7.4, 3 min) was applied at reperfusion and compared with controls (i.e., no strategy). After 60 min reperfusion, recovery of left ventricular work (developed pressure*heart rate; expressed as percent of pre-ischemic value) was significantly greater for mild hypothermia (62 ± 7%), MPC (65 ± 8%) and hypoxia (61 ± 11%; p < 0.05 for all), but not for low pH (45 ± 13%), vs. controls (44 ± 7%). Increased hemodynamic recovery was associated with greater oxygen consumption (mild hypothermia, MPC) and coronary perfusion (mild hypothermia, MPC, hypoxia), and with reduced markers of necrosis (mild hypothermia, MPC, hypoxia) and mitochondrial damage (mild hypothermia, hypoxia). Conclusions: Brief modifications in physical conditions at reperfusion, such as hypothermia, mechanical postconditioning, and hypoxia, improve post-ischemic hemodynamic function in our model of DCD. Cardioprotective reperfusion strategies applied at graft procurement could improve DCD graft recovery and limit further injury; however, optimal clinical approaches remain to be characterized. PMID:27920725

  17. A molecular protocol for diagnosing myotonic dystrophy.

    PubMed

    Guida, M; Marger, R S; Papp, A C; Snyder, P J; Sedra, M S; Kissel, J T; Mendell, J R; Prior, T W

    1995-01-01

    Myotonic dystrophy (DM) is an autosomal dominant genetic disease caused by an unstable CTG repeat sequence in the 3' untranslated region of the myotonin protein kinase gene. The CTG repeat is present 5-30 times in the normal population, whereas DM patients have CTG expansions of 50 to several thousand repeats. The age of onset of the disorder and the severity of the phenotype is roughly correlated with the size of the CTG expansion. We developed a molecular protocol for the diagnosis of DM based on an initial polymerase chain reaction screen to detect normal-sized alleles and small expansions, followed by an improved Southern protocol to detect larger expansions.

  18. Cryptanalysis of the Quantum Group Signature Protocols

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhang, Ke-Jia; Sun, Ying; Song, Ting-Ting; Zuo, Hui-Juan

    2013-11-01

    Recently, the researches of quantum group signature (QGS) have attracted a lot of attentions and some typical protocols have been designed for e-payment system, e-government, e-business, etc. In this paper, we analyze the security of the quantum group signature with the example of two novel protocols. It can be seen that both of them cannot be implemented securely since the arbitrator cannot solve the disputes fairly. In order to show that, some possible attack strategies, which can be used by the malicious participants, are proposed. Moreover, the further discussions of QGS are presented finally, including some insecurity factors and improved ideas.

  19. Generalized teleportation protocol

    SciTech Connect

    Gordon, Goren; Rigolin, Gustavo

    2006-04-15

    A generalized teleportation protocol (GTP) for N qubits is presented, where the teleportation channels are nonmaximally entangled and all the free parameters of the protocol are considered: Alice's measurement basis, her sets of acceptable results, and Bob's unitary operations. The full range of fidelity (F) of the teleported state and the probability of success (P{sub suc}) to obtain a given fidelity are achieved by changing these free parameters. A channel efficiency bound is found, where one can determine how to divide it between F and P{sub suc}. A one-qubit formulation is presented and then expanded to N qubits. A proposed experimental setup that implements the GTP is given using linear optics.

  20. Protocols for distributive scheduling

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Richards, Stephen F.; Fox, Barry

    1993-01-01

    The increasing complexity of space operations and the inclusion of interorganizational and international groups in the planning and control of space missions lead to requirements for greater communication, coordination, and cooperation among mission schedulers. These schedulers must jointly allocate scarce shared resources among the various operational and mission oriented activities while adhering to all constraints. This scheduling environment is complicated by such factors as the presence of varying perspectives and conflicting objectives among the schedulers, the need for different schedulers to work in parallel, and limited communication among schedulers. Smooth interaction among schedulers requires the use of protocols that govern such issues as resource sharing, authority to update the schedule, and communication of updates. This paper addresses the development and characteristics of such protocols and their use in a distributed scheduling environment that incorporates computer-aided scheduling tools. An example problem is drawn from the domain of space shuttle mission planning.

  1. Dysphonia risk screening protocol

    PubMed Central

    Nemr, Katia; Simões-Zenari, Marcia; da Trindade Duarte, João Marcos; Lobrigate, Karen Elena; Bagatini, Flavia Alves

    2016-01-01

    OBJECTIVE: To propose and test the applicability of a dysphonia risk screening protocol with score calculation in individuals with and without dysphonia. METHOD: This descriptive cross-sectional study included 365 individuals (41 children, 142 adult women, 91 adult men and 91 seniors) divided into a dysphonic group and a non-dysphonic group. The protocol consisted of 18 questions and a score was calculated using a 10-cm visual analog scale. The measured value on the visual analog scale was added to the overall score, along with other partial scores. Speech samples allowed for analysis/assessment of the overall degree of vocal deviation and initial definition of the respective groups and after six months, the separation of the groups was confirmed using an acoustic analysis. RESULTS: The mean total scores were different between the groups in all samples. Values ranged between 37.0 and 57.85 in the dysphonic group and between 12.95 and 19.28 in the non-dysphonic group, with overall means of 46.09 and 15.55, respectively. High sensitivity and specificity were demonstrated when discriminating between the groups with the following cut-off points: 22.50 (children), 29.25 (adult women), 22.75 (adult men), and 27.10 (seniors). CONCLUSION: The protocol demonstrated high sensitivity and specificity in differentiating groups of individuals with and without dysphonia in different sample groups and is thus an effective instrument for use in voice clinics. PMID:27074171

  2. Satellite Communications Using Commercial Protocols

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Ivancic, William D.; Griner, James H.; Dimond, Robert; Frantz, Brian D.; Kachmar, Brian; Shell, Dan

    2000-01-01

    NASA Glenn Research Center has been working with industry, academia, and other government agencies in assessing commercial communications protocols for satellite and space-based applications. In addition, NASA Glenn has been developing and advocating new satellite-friendly modifications to existing communications protocol standards. This paper summarizes recent research into the applicability of various commercial standard protocols for use over satellite and space- based communications networks as well as expectations for future protocol development. It serves as a reference point from which the detailed work can be readily accessed. Areas that will be addressed include asynchronous-transfer-mode quality of service; completed and ongoing work of the Internet Engineering Task Force; data-link-layer protocol development for unidirectional link routing; and protocols for aeronautical applications, including mobile Internet protocol routing for wireless/mobile hosts and the aeronautical telecommunications network protocol.

  3. Protocols for multisatellite military networks

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kolavennu, V. R.; Aronson, M. H.; Sites, M. J.

    The performance of a number of network control protocols applicable to multisatellite networks using single and multiple antenna beams is evaluated. The protocols analyzed include: token passing, polled TDMA, adaptive TDMA, and a reservation assignment with TDMA orderwire. The effects of varying the number of network terminals in the system, message arrival rates and length, propagation delay, and interleaver span-times on the performance of the protocols are investigated. The capabilities of a reservation assignment protocol with slotted-Aloha orderwire and an in-band network control protocol with congestion control and multiple user priorities are examined. It is observed that the token passing protocol is most applicable to an EHF tactical network; the reservation assignment protocol is suited to networks with many terminals requiring short, bursty data communication capability; and the in-band network control protocol is useful for tactical networks that require interoperability.

  4. Isolation of Human Basophils.

    PubMed

    Schroeder, John T; Bieneman, Anja P

    2016-02-02

    Isolating human basophils from blood has long been hampered by the fact that these granulocytes represent just 1% or less of the circulating leukocyte population. We describe herein laboratory protocols that have been refined over the past ∼25 years that now enable investigators to prepare basophils for use in a variety of assays to assess the in vitro biology of these immune cells, both in IgE -dependent and -independent responses.

  5. Improved production of poly-γ-glutamic acid by Bacillus subtilis D7 isolated from Doenjang, a Korean traditional fermented food, and its antioxidant activity.

    PubMed

    Lee, Na-Ri; Lee, Sang-Mee; Cho, Kwang-Sik; Jeong, Seong-Yun; Hwang, Dae-Youn; Kim, Dong-Seob; Hong, Chang-Oh; Son, Hong-Joo

    2014-06-01

    The objectives of this study was to improve poly-γ-glutamic acid (γ-PGA) production by Bacillus subtilis D7 isolated from a Korean traditional fermented food and to assess its antioxidant activity for applications in the cosmetics and pharmaceutical industries. Strain D7 produced γ-PGA in the absence of L-glutamic acid, indicating L-glutamic acid-independent production. However, the addition of L-glutamic acid increased γ-PGA production. Several tricarboxylic acid cycle intermediates and amino acids could serve as the metabolic precursors for γ-PGA production, and the addition of pyruvic acid and D-glutamic acid to culture medium improved the yield of γ-PGA markedly. The maximum yield of γ-PGA obtained was 24.93 ± 0.64 g/l in improved medium, which was about 5.4-fold higher than the yield obtained in basal medium. γ-PGA was found to have 1,1-diphenyl-2-picrylhydrazyl (DPPH) radical scavenging activity (46.8 ± 1.5 %), hydroxyl radical scavenging activity (52.0 ± 1.8 %), 2,2'-azinobis-3-ethylbenzothiazoline-6-sulfonate (ABTS) radical scavenging activity (42.1 ± 1.8 %), nitric oxide scavenging activity (35.1 ± 1.3 %), reducing power (0.304 ± 0.008), and metal chelating activity (91.3 ± 3.5 %). These results indicate that γ-PGA has a potential use in the food, cosmetics, and biomedical industries for the development of novel products with radical scavenging activity. As far as we are aware, this is the first report to describe the antioxidant activityof γ-PGA produced by bacteria.

  6. WDM network and multicasting protocol strategies.

    PubMed

    Kirci, Pinar; Zaim, Abdul Halim

    2014-01-01

    Optical technology gains extensive attention and ever increasing improvement because of the huge amount of network traffic caused by the growing number of internet users and their rising demands. However, with wavelength division multiplexing (WDM), it is easier to take the advantage of optical networks and optical burst switching (OBS) and to construct WDM networks with low delay rates and better data transparency these technologies are the best choices. Furthermore, multicasting in WDM is an urgent solution for bandwidth-intensive applications. In the paper, a new multicasting protocol with OBS is proposed. The protocol depends on a leaf initiated structure. The network is composed of source, ingress switches, intermediate switches, edge switches, and client nodes. The performance of the protocol is examined with Just Enough Time (JET) and Just In Time (JIT) reservation protocols. Also, the paper involves most of the recent advances about WDM multicasting in optical networks. WDM multicasting in optical networks is given as three common subtitles: Broadcast and-select networks, wavelength-routed networks, and OBS networks. Also, in the paper, multicast routing protocols are briefly summarized and optical burst switched WDM networks are investigated with the proposed multicast schemes.

  7. Healthy Indoor Environment Protocols for Home Energy Upgrades

    EPA Pesticide Factsheets

    This page contains the EPA-developed Healthy Indoor Environment Protocols for Home Energy Upgrades, a PDF guide that provides a set of best practices for improving indoor air quality in conjunction with energy upgrade work in homes.

  8. A Geographical Heuristic Routing Protocol for VANETs

    PubMed Central

    Urquiza-Aguiar, Luis; Tripp-Barba, Carolina; Aguilar Igartua, Mónica

    2016-01-01

    Vehicular ad hoc networks (VANETs) leverage the communication system of Intelligent Transportation Systems (ITS). Recently, Delay-Tolerant Network (DTN) routing protocols have increased their popularity among the research community for being used in non-safety VANET applications and services like traffic reporting. Vehicular DTN protocols use geographical and local information to make forwarding decisions. However, current proposals only consider the selection of the best candidate based on a local-search. In this paper, we propose a generic Geographical Heuristic Routing (GHR) protocol that can be applied to any DTN geographical routing protocol that makes forwarding decisions hop by hop. GHR includes in its operation adaptations simulated annealing and Tabu-search meta-heuristics, which have largely been used to improve local-search results in discrete optimization. We include a complete performance evaluation of GHR in a multi-hop VANET simulation scenario for a reporting service. Our study analyzes all of the meaningful configurations of GHR and offers a statistical analysis of our findings by means of MANOVA tests. Our results indicate that the use of a Tabu list contributes to improving the packet delivery ratio by around 5% to 10%. Moreover, if Tabu is used, then the simulated annealing routing strategy gets a better performance than the selection of the best node used with carry and forwarding (default operation). PMID:27669254

  9. A Geographical Heuristic Routing Protocol for VANETs.

    PubMed

    Urquiza-Aguiar, Luis; Tripp-Barba, Carolina; Aguilar Igartua, Mónica

    2016-09-23

    Vehicular ad hoc networks (VANETs) leverage the communication system of Intelligent Transportation Systems (ITS). Recently, Delay-Tolerant Network (DTN) routing protocols have increased their popularity among the research community for being used in non-safety VANET applications and services like traffic reporting. Vehicular DTN protocols use geographical and local information to make forwarding decisions. However, current proposals only consider the selection of the best candidate based on a local-search. In this paper, we propose a generic Geographical Heuristic Routing (GHR) protocol that can be applied to any DTN geographical routing protocol that makes forwarding decisions hop by hop. GHR includes in its operation adaptations simulated annealing and Tabu-search meta-heuristics, which have largely been used to improve local-search results in discrete optimization. We include a complete performance evaluation of GHR in a multi-hop VANET simulation scenario for a reporting service. Our study analyzes all of the meaningful configurations of GHR and offers a statistical analysis of our findings by means of MANOVA tests. Our results indicate that the use of a Tabu list contributes to improving the packet delivery ratio by around 5% to 10%. Moreover, if Tabu is used, then the simulated annealing routing strategy gets a better performance than the selection of the best node used with carry and forwarding (default operation).

  10. Oral corticosteroids can improve nocturnal isolated hypoxemia in stable COPD patients with diurnal PaO2 > 60 mmHg.

    PubMed

    Sposato, B; Mariotta, S; Palmiero, G; Ricci, A; Gencarelli, G; Franco, C

    2007-01-01

    The aim of this study was to evaluate whether a short therapy cycle of oral methylprednisolone plus conventional therapy might improve isolated nocturnal hypoxemia evidenced through pulse-oxymetry in 28 patients (19 M/9 F; mean age 71 +/- 8.31) with stable moderate to severe COPD (average FEV1 of 43.33 +/- 9.38 of theoretical) and daytime PaO2 > 60 mmHg. All patients showed oxygen desaturation during the night and apnoea/hypoapnoea index < or = 10, measured by means of a nocturnal polysomnography and were successfully on conventional treatment for COPD. The patients were randomly divided into two groups: 14 (steroid group) were administered methylprednisolone for three weeks at progressively decreasing doses (16 mg/die for the first 7 days, then 8 mg die for another 7 days, and finally 4 mg die for another 7 days) plus conventional therapy (bronchodilators and inhaled corticosteroids). The remaining 14 patients (control group) instead were on conventional therapy only. After 3 weeks for the steroid group, but no for the control group, was improved next parameters (p < 0.0001): VC (L) dropped from 2.53 +/- 0.85 measured at baseline to 2.82 +/- 0.84, FEV1 dropped from 1.07 +/- 0.31 L to 1.23 +/- 0.31 L, the IC dropped from 1.71 +/- 0.48 to 2 +/- 0.37 L, the average nocturnal SpO2% from 90.4 +/- 1.79 to 92.3 +/- 1.72 and the Nocturnal Time % of SpO2 < 90% went from 31.19 +/- 18.12 to 10.88 +/- 11.56 after 3 weeks of therapy. Also dyspnoea, sleep duration and mean heart rate significantly improved (p < 0.0001). There was also a significant correlation between average increase in mean nocturnal SpO2% and in Lowest SpO2% and the variation in inspiratory capacity (IC) and in Sleep Duration % in the steroid group (p < 0.0001). In conclusion, methylprednisolone in combination with conventional medical therapy not only improved lung function values but also mean nocturnal oxyhemoglobin saturation and sleep duration in clinically stabilized COPD patients who experience

  11. Optical Circuit Switched Protocol

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Monacos, Steve P. (Inventor)

    2000-01-01

    The present invention is a system and method embodied in an optical circuit switched protocol for the transmission of data through a network. The optical circuit switched protocol is an all-optical circuit switched network and includes novel optical switching nodes for transmitting optical data packets within a network. Each optical switching node comprises a detector for receiving the header, header detection logic for translating the header into routing information and eliminating the header, and a controller for receiving the routing information and configuring an all optical path within the node. The all optical path located within the node is solely an optical path without having electronic storage of the data and without having optical delay of the data. Since electronic storage of the header is not necessary and the initial header is eliminated by the first detector of the first switching node. multiple identical headers are sent throughout the network so that subsequent switching nodes can receive and read the header for setting up an optical data path.

  12. Protocol Architecture Model Report

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Dhas, Chris

    2000-01-01

    NASA's Glenn Research Center (GRC) defines and develops advanced technology for high priority national needs in communications technologies for application to aeronautics and space. GRC tasked Computer Networks and Software Inc. (CNS) to examine protocols and architectures for an In-Space Internet Node. CNS has developed a methodology for network reference models to support NASA's four mission areas: Earth Science, Space Science, Human Exploration and Development of Space (REDS), Aerospace Technology. This report applies the methodology to three space Internet-based communications scenarios for future missions. CNS has conceptualized, designed, and developed space Internet-based communications protocols and architectures for each of the independent scenarios. The scenarios are: Scenario 1: Unicast communications between a Low-Earth-Orbit (LEO) spacecraft inspace Internet node and a ground terminal Internet node via a Tracking and Data Rela Satellite (TDRS) transfer; Scenario 2: Unicast communications between a Low-Earth-Orbit (LEO) International Space Station and a ground terminal Internet node via a TDRS transfer; Scenario 3: Multicast Communications (or "Multicasting"), 1 Spacecraft to N Ground Receivers, N Ground Transmitters to 1 Ground Receiver via a Spacecraft.

  13. Alkylation of Histidine Residues of Bothrops jararacussu Venom Proteins and Isolated Phospholipases A2: A Biotechnological Tool to Improve the Production of Antibodies

    PubMed Central

    Guimarães, C. L. S.; Andrião-Escarso, S. H.; Moreira-Dill, L. S.; Carvalho, B. M. A.; Marchi-Salvador, D. P.; Santos-Filho, N. A.; Fernandes, C. A. H.; Fontes, M. R. M.; Giglio, J. R.; Barraviera, B.; Zuliani, J. P.; Fernandes, C. F. C.; Calderón, L. A.; Stábeli, R. G.; Albericio, F.; da Silva, S. L.; Soares, A. M.

    2014-01-01

    Crude venom of Bothrops jararacussu and isolated phospholipases A2 (PLA2) of this toxin (BthTX-I and BthTX-II) were chemically modified (alkylation) by p-bromophenacyl bromide (BPB) in order to study antibody production capacity in function of the structure-function relationship of these substances (crude venom and PLA2 native and alkylated). BthTX-II showed enzymatic activity, while BthTX-I did not. Alkylation reduced BthTX-II activity by 50% while this process abolished the catalytic and myotoxic activities of BthTX-I, while reducing its edema-inducing activity by about 50%. Antibody production against the native and alkylated forms of BthTX-I and -II and the cross-reactivity of antibodies to native and alkylated toxins did not show any apparent differences and these observations were reinforced by surface plasmon resonance (SPR) data. Histopathological analysis of mouse gastrocnemius muscle sections after injection of PBS, BthTX-I, BthTX-II, or both myotoxins previously incubated with neutralizing antibody showed inhibition of the toxin-induced myotoxicity. These results reveal that the chemical modification of the phospholipases A2 (PLA2) diminished their toxicity but did not alter their antigenicity. This observation indicates that the modified PLA2 may provide a biotechnological tool to attenuate the toxicity of the crude venom, by improving the production of antibodies and decreasing the local toxic effects of this poisonous substance in animals used to produce antivenom. PMID:24901004

  14. Alkylation of histidine residues of Bothrops jararacussu venom proteins and isolated phospholipases A2: a biotechnological tool to improve the production of antibodies.

    PubMed

    Guimarães, C L S; Andrião-Escarso, S H; Moreira-Dill, L S; Carvalho, B M A; Marchi-Salvador, D P; Santos-Filho, N A; Fernandes, C A H; Fontes, M R M; Giglio, J R; Barraviera, B; Zuliani, J P; Fernandes, C F C; Calderón, L A; Stábeli, R G; Albericio, F; da Silva, S L; Soares, A M

    2014-01-01

    Crude venom of Bothrops jararacussu and isolated phospholipases A2 (PLA2) of this toxin (BthTX-I and BthTX-II) were chemically modified (alkylation) by p-bromophenacyl bromide (BPB) in order to study antibody production capacity in function of the structure-function relationship of these substances (crude venom and PLA2 native and alkylated). BthTX-II showed enzymatic activity, while BthTX-I did not. Alkylation reduced BthTX-II activity by 50% while this process abolished the catalytic and myotoxic activities of BthTX-I, while reducing its edema-inducing activity by about 50%. Antibody production against the native and alkylated forms of BthTX-I and -II and the cross-reactivity of antibodies to native and alkylated toxins did not show any apparent differences and these observations were reinforced by surface plasmon resonance (SPR) data. Histopathological analysis of mouse gastrocnemius muscle sections after injection of PBS, BthTX-I, BthTX-II, or both myotoxins previously incubated with neutralizing antibody showed inhibition of the toxin-induced myotoxicity. These results reveal that the chemical modification of the phospholipases A2 (PLA2) diminished their toxicity but did not alter their antigenicity. This observation indicates that the modified PLA2 may provide a biotechnological tool to attenuate the toxicity of the crude venom, by improving the production of antibodies and decreasing the local toxic effects of this poisonous substance in animals used to produce antivenom.

  15. The Miraprep: A Protocol that Uses a Miniprep Kit and Provides Maxiprep Yields

    PubMed Central

    Pronobis, Mira I.; Deuitch, Natalie

    2016-01-01

    Plasmid purification is a basic tool of molecular biologists. Although the development of plasmid isolation kits utilizing silica spin columns reduced the time and labor spent on plasmid purification, achieving large plasmid DNA yields still requires significant time and effort. Here we introduce the Miraprep, a rapid protocol that allows isolation of plasmid DNA using commercial Miniprep kits, but with DNA yields comparable to commercial Maxiprep plasmid purifications. Combining ethanol precipitation with spin column purification, we created a DNA isolation protocol that yields highly concentrated plasmid DNA samples in less than 30 minutes. We show that Miraprep isolated plasmids are as stable as plasmids isolated by standard procedures, can be used for standard molecular biology procedures including DNA sequencing, and can be efficiently transfected into mammalian cells. This new plasmid DNA isolation protocol will significantly reduce time and labor without increasing costs. PMID:27486871

  16. Pyrosequencing Using the Single-Nucleotide Polymorphism Protocol for Rapid Determination of TEM- and SHV-Type Extended-Spectrum β-Lactamases in Clinical Isolates and Identification of the Novel β-Lactamase Genes blaSHV-48, blaSHV-105, and blaTEM-155▿

    PubMed Central

    Jones, C. Hal; Ruzin, Alexey; Tuckman, Margareta; Visalli, Melissa A.; Petersen, Peter J.; Bradford, Patricia A.

    2009-01-01

    TEM- and SHV-type extended-spectrum β-lactamases (ESBLs) are the most common ESBLs found in the United States and are prevalent throughout the world. Amino acid substitutions at a number of positions in TEM-1 lead to the ESBL phenotype, although substitutions at residues 104 (E to K), 164 (R to S or H), 238 (G to S), and 240 (E to K) appear to be particularly important in modifying the spectrum of activity of the enzyme. The SHV-1-derived ESBLs are a less diverse collection of enzymes; however, the majority of amino acid substitutions resulting in an ESBL mirror those seen in the TEM-1-derived enzymes. Pyrosequencing by use of the single-nucleotide polymorphism (SNP) protocol was applied to provide sequence data at positions critical for the ESBL phenotype spanning the blaTEM and blaSHV genes. Three novel β-lactamases are described: the ESBLs TEM-155 (Q39K, R164S, E240K) and SHV-105 (I8F, R43S, G156D, G238S, E240K) and a non-ESBL, SHV-48 (V119I). The ceftazidime, ceftriaxone, and aztreonam MICs for an Escherichia coli isolate expressing blaSHV-105 were >128, 128, and >128 μg/ml, respectively. Likewise, the ceftazidime, ceftriaxone, and aztreonam MICs for an E. coli isolate expressing blaTEM-155 were >128, 64, and > 128 μg/ml, respectively. Pyrosequence analysis determined the true identity of the β-lactamase on plasmid R1010 to be SHV-11 rather than SHV-1, as previously reported. Pyrosequencing is a real-time sequencing-by-synthesis approach that was applied to SNP detection for TEM- and SHV-type ESBL identification and represents a robust tool for rapid sequence determination that may have a place in the clinical setting. PMID:19075050

  17. Pyrosequencing using the single-nucleotide polymorphism protocol for rapid determination of TEM- and SHV-type extended-spectrum beta-lactamases in clinical isolates and identification of the novel beta-lactamase genes blaSHV-48, blaSHV-105, and blaTEM-155.

    PubMed

    Jones, C Hal; Ruzin, Alexey; Tuckman, Margareta; Visalli, Melissa A; Petersen, Peter J; Bradford, Patricia A

    2009-03-01

    TEM- and SHV-type extended-spectrum beta-lactamases (ESBLs) are the most common ESBLs found in the United States and are prevalent throughout the world. Amino acid substitutions at a number of positions in TEM-1 lead to the ESBL phenotype, although substitutions at residues 104 (E to K), 164 (R to S or H), 238 (G to S), and 240 (E to K) appear to be particularly important in modifying the spectrum of activity of the enzyme. The SHV-1-derived ESBLs are a less diverse collection of enzymes; however, the majority of amino acid substitutions resulting in an ESBL mirror those seen in the TEM-1-derived enzymes. Pyrosequencing by use of the single-nucleotide polymorphism (SNP) protocol was applied to provide sequence data at positions critical for the ESBL phenotype spanning the bla(TEM) and bla(SHV) genes. Three novel beta-lactamases are described: the ESBLs TEM-155 (Q39K, R164S, E240K) and SHV-105 (I8F, R43S, G156D, G238S, E240K) and a non-ESBL, SHV-48 (V119I). The ceftazidime, ceftriaxone, and aztreonam MICs for an Escherichia coli isolate expressing bla(SHV-105) were >128, 128, and >128 microg/ml, respectively. Likewise, the ceftazidime, ceftriaxone, and aztreonam MICs for an E. coli isolate expressing bla(TEM-155) were >128, 64, and > 128 microg/ml, respectively. Pyrosequence analysis determined the true identity of the beta-lactamase on plasmid R1010 to be SHV-11 rather than SHV-1, as previously reported. Pyrosequencing is a real-time sequencing-by-synthesis approach that was applied to SNP detection for TEM- and SHV-type ESBL identification and represents a robust tool for rapid sequence determination that may have a place in the clinical setting.

  18. Low-loss, high-isolation, fiber-optic isolator

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Lutes, George F. (Inventor)

    1988-01-01

    A low-loss, high-isolation, fiber-optic isolator for use in single-mode fiber systems utilizes a Faraday rotator and two polarizers, one at each end angularly oriented from each other at the angle of rotation for isolation, and two aspheric lens connectors to couple optical fibers to the Faraday isolator to reduce forward loss to about 2.5 dB and improve isolation to greater than 70 dB.

  19. Clinical validation protocols for noninvasive blood pressure monitors and their recognition by regulatory authorities and professional organizations: rationale and considerations for a single unified protocol or standard.

    PubMed

    Ng, Kim-Gau

    2013-10-01

    Standardized protocols for validating the clinical accuracy of noninvasive blood pressure (NIBP) monitors have been available since 1987. Some of them were developed by standards bodies and others by professional organizations. They have been well-tested through use and progressively improved through multiple revisions; however, many methodological differences exist between them. In addition, for the purpose of regulatory approval or marketing clearance, some protocols are recognized in some countries but not in others; thus, manufacturers have to validate their NIBP monitors to more than one protocol in order to market them worldwide. The use of different protocols not only makes it difficult to compare one device with another but also complicates the validation, regulatory approval, marketing, and public acceptance of NIBP monitors, creating undue burden on manufacturers and unnecessary confusion among users. There is a need for protocol developers, standards bodies, and regulatory authorities to work together to develop and agree on a single unified protocol or standard, one that builds on the strengths of the various protocols that have been developed so far. It is apparent that there is already a trend toward convergence of the various protocols into two protocols, namely, the ISO 81060-2:2009 standard and the 2010 European Society of Hypertension International Protocol. With further reconciliation and consensus, it should be possible to integrate the best features of the ISO, European Society of Hypertension, and other protocols, along with further improvements, into a single unified protocol or standard.

  20. Modified Hodge test using Mueller-Hinton agar supplemented with cloxacillin improves screening for carbapenemase-producing clinical isolates of Enterobacteriaceae.

    PubMed

    Takayama, Yoko; Adachi, Yuzuru; Nihonyanagi, Shin; Okamoto, Ryoichi

    2015-07-01

    Increasing numbers of clinical isolates of Enterobacteriaceae that produce carbapenemase are now being detected, with the most common carbapenemase found among Enterobacteriaceae in Japan being IMP-1-type metallo-β-lactamase. Clinical isolates of Enterobacteriaceae harbouring carbapenemases may be resistant to carbapenem antimicrobial agents, despite apparent in vitro susceptibility when tested according to Clinical and Laboratory Standards Institute criteria. We evaluated the prevalence of carbapenemase producers among isolates of Enterobacteriaceae at our hospital and assessed the performance of the modified Hodge test (MHT) for correctly identifying the phenotype. We studied 47 clinical isolates obtained between 2006 and 2010 for which the MIC of imipenem was 2 or 4 μg imipenem ml- 1. Antibacterial susceptibility testing was done for cephalosporins and carbapenems, the MHT was performed with meropenem and detection of the genes encoding IMP-1, VIM-2, KPC-2 and NDM-1-type metallo-β-lactamases was performed by PCR. Twelve isolates showed a positive result in the MHT with meropenem and were classified as carbapenemase producers. Of these 12 isolates, seven carried the gene for IMP-1 type, but not for VIM-2, KPC-2 or NDM-1 types. None of the carbapenemase genes tested were detected in the other five isolates. All five isolates were Enterobacter cloacae showing high resistance to ceftazidime and aztreonam. False-positive results were inhibited when Mueller-Hinton agar supplemented with 200 mg cloxacillin ml- 1 was used for the MHT. Five of 12 MHT-positive isolates were shown to have no carbapenemase genes and these isolates were high AmpC producers. Adding cloxacillin when performing the MHT prevented such false-positive results. The MHT with cloxacillin can overcome most problems related to detection of carbapenemases.