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Sample records for increases quantal size

  1. Synaptic Consolidation Normalizes AMPAR Quantal Size following MAGUK Loss.

    PubMed

    Levy, Jonathan M; Chen, Xiaobing; Reese, Thomas S; Nicoll, Roger A

    2015-08-05

    The mechanisms controlling synapse growth and maintenance are of critical importance for learning and memory. The MAGUK family of synaptic scaffolding proteins is abundantly expressed at glutamatergic central synapses, but their importance in controlling the synaptic content of glutamate receptors is poorly understood. Here, we use a chained RNAi-mediated knockdown approach to simultaneously remove PSD-93, PSD-95, and SAP102, the MAGUKs previously shown to be responsible for synaptic localization of glutamate receptors. We find that MAGUKs are specifically responsible for creating functional synapses after initial spine formation by filling functionally silent spines with glutamate receptors. Removal of the MAGUKs causes a transient reduction in AMPA receptor quantal size followed by synaptic consolidation resulting in a normalization of quantal size at the few remaining functional synapses. Consolidation requires signaling through L-type calcium channels, CaM kinase kinase, and the GluA2 AMPA receptor subunit, akin to a homeostatic process.

  2. Presynaptic recording of quanta from midbrain dopamine neurons and modulation of the quantal size.

    PubMed

    Pothos, E N; Davila, V; Sulzer, D

    1998-06-01

    The observation of quantal release from central catecholamine neurons has proven elusive because of the absence of evoked rapid postsynaptic currents. We adapted amperometric methods to observe quantal release directly from axonal varicosities of midbrain dopamine neurons that predominantly contain small synaptic vesicles. Quantal events were elicited by high K+ or alpha-latrotoxin, required extracellular Ca2+, and were abolished by reserpine. The events indicated the release of 3000 molecules over 200 microsec, much smaller and faster events than quanta associated with large dense-core vesicles previously recorded in vertebrate preparations. The number of dopamine molecules per quantum increased as a population to 380% of controls after glial-derived neurotrophic factor (GDNF) exposure and to 350% of controls after exposure to the dopamine precursor L-dihydroxyphenylalanine (L-DOPA). These results introduce a means to measure directly the number of transmitter molecules released from small synaptic vesicles of CNS neurons. Moreover, quantal size was not an invariant parameter in CNS neurons but could be modulated by neurotrophic factors and altered neurotransmitter synthesis.

  3. BDNF Enhances Quantal Neurotransmitter Release and Increases the Number of Docked Vesicles at the Active Zones of Hippocampal Excitatory Synapses

    PubMed Central

    Tyler, William J.; Pozzo-Miller, Lucas D.

    2009-01-01

    Brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) is emerging as a key mediator of activity-dependent modifications of synaptic strength in the CNS. We investigated the hypothesis that BDNF enhances quantal neurotransmitter release by modulating the distribution of synaptic vesicles within presynaptic terminals using organotypic slice cultures of postnatal rat hippocampus. BDNF specifically increased the number of docked vesicles at the active zone of excitatory synapses on CA1 dendritic spines, with only a small increase in active zone size. In agreement with the hypothesis that an increased docked vesicle density enhances quantal neurotransmitter release, BDNF increased the frequency, but not the amplitude, of AMPA receptor-mediated miniature EPSCs (mEPSCs) recorded from CA1 pyramidal neurons in hippocampal slices. Synapse number, independently estimated from dendritic spine density and electron microscopy measurements, was also increased after BDNF treatment, indicating that the actions of BNDF on mEPSC frequency can be partially attributed to an increased synaptic density. Our results further suggest that all these actions were mediated via tyrosine kinase B (TrkB) receptor activation, established by inhibition of plasma membrane tyrosine kinases with K-252a. These results provide additional evidence of a fundamental role of the BDNF–TrkB signaling cascade in synaptic transmission, as well as in cellular models of hippocampus-dependent learning and memory. PMID:11404410

  4. PROTEIN KINASE B/AKT IS A NOVEL CYSTEINE STRING PROTEIN KINASE THAT REGULATES EXOCYTOSIS RELEASE KINETICS AND QUANTAL SIZE

    PubMed Central

    Evans, Gareth J. O.; Barclay, Jeff W.; Prescott, Gerald R.; Jo, Sung-Ro; Burgoyne, Robert D.; Birnbaum, Morris J.; Morgan, Alan

    2008-01-01

    Protein kinase B/Akt has been implicated in the insulin-dependent exocytosis of GLUT4-containing vesicles, and, more recently, insulin secretion. To determine if Akt also regulates insulin-independent exocytosis, we used adrenal chromaffin cells, a popular neuronal model. Akt1 was the predominant isoform expressed in chromaffin cells, although lower levels of Akt2 and Akt3 were also found. Secretory stimuli in both intact and permeabilized cells induced Akt phosphorylation on serine-473, and the time course of Ca2+-induced Akt phosphorylation was similar to that of exocytosis in permeabilized cells. To determine if Akt modulated exocytosis, we transfected chromaffin cells with Akt constructs and monitored catecholamine release by amperometry. Wild-type Akt had no effect on the overall number of exocytotic events, but slowed the kinetics of catecholamine release from individual vesicles, resulting in an increased quantal size. This effect was due to phosphorylation by Akt, as it was not seen in cells transfected with kinase-dead mutant Akt. As overexpression of cysteine string protein (CSP) results in a similar alteration in release kinetics and quantal size, we determined if CSP was an Akt substrate. In vitro 32P-phosphorylation studies revealed that Akt phosphorylates CSP on serine-10. Using phospho-serine10-specific antisera, we found that both transfected and endogenous cellular CSP is phosphorylated by Akt on this residue. Taken together, these findings reveal a novel role for Akt phosphorylation in regulating the late stages of exocytosis and suggest that this is achieved via the phosphorylation of CSP on serine-10. PMID:16243840

  5. Hdac Activity is Required for Bdnf to Increase Quantal Neurotransmitter Release and Dendritic Spine Density in CA1 Pyramidal Neurons

    PubMed Central

    Calfa, Gaston; Chapleau, Christopher A.; Campbell, Susan; Inoue, Takafumi; Morse, Sarah J.; Lubin, Farah D.; Pozzo-Miller, Lucas

    2012-01-01

    Molecular mechanisms involved in the strengthening and formation of synapses include the activation and repression of specific genes or subsets of genes by epigenetic modifications that do not alter the genetic code itself. Chromatin modifications mediated by histone acetylation have been shown to be critical for synaptic plasticity at hippocampal excitatory synapses and hippocampal-dependent memory formation. Considering that brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) plays an important role in synaptic plasticity and behavioral adaptations, it is not surprising that regulation of this gene is subject to histone acetylation changes during synaptic plasticity and hippocampal-dependent memory formation. Whether the effects of BDNF on dendritic spines and quantal transmitter release require histone modifications remains less known. By using two different inhibitors of histone deacetylases (HDAC), we describe here that their activity is required for BDNF to increase dendritic spine density and excitatory quantal transmitter release onto CA1 pyramidal neurons in hippocampal slice cultures. These results suggest that histone acetylation/deacetylation is a critical step in the modulation of hippocampal synapses by BDNF. Thus, mechanisms of epigenetic modulation of synapse formation and function are novel targets to consider for the amelioration of symptoms of intellectual disabilities and neurodegenerative disorders associated with cognitive and memory deficits. PMID:22161912

  6. Reliable evaluation of the quantal determinants of synaptic efficacy using Bayesian analysis

    PubMed Central

    Beato, M.

    2013-01-01

    Communication between neurones in the central nervous system depends on synaptic transmission. The efficacy of synapses is determined by pre- and postsynaptic factors that can be characterized using quantal parameters such as the probability of neurotransmitter release, number of release sites, and quantal size. Existing methods of estimating the quantal parameters based on multiple probability fluctuation analysis (MPFA) are limited by their requirement for long recordings to acquire substantial data sets. We therefore devised an algorithm, termed Bayesian Quantal Analysis (BQA), that can yield accurate estimates of the quantal parameters from data sets of as small a size as 60 observations for each of only 2 conditions of release probability. Computer simulations are used to compare its performance in accuracy with that of MPFA, while varying the number of observations and the simulated range in release probability. We challenge BQA with realistic complexities characteristic of complex synapses, such as increases in the intra- or intersite variances, and heterogeneity in release probabilities. Finally, we validate the method using experimental data obtained from electrophysiological recordings to show that the effect of an antagonist on postsynaptic receptors is correctly characterized by BQA by a specific reduction in the estimates of quantal size. Since BQA routinely yields reliable estimates of the quantal parameters from small data sets, it is ideally suited to identify the locus of synaptic plasticity for experiments in which repeated manipulations of the recording environment are unfeasible. PMID:23076101

  7. Intracellular Ca2+ stores and Ca2+ influx are both required for BDNF to rapidly increase quantal vesicular transmitter release.

    PubMed

    Amaral, Michelle D; Pozzo-Miller, Lucas

    2012-01-01

    Brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) is well known as a survival factor during brain development as well as a regulator of adult synaptic plasticity. One potential mechanism to initiate BDNF actions is through its modulation of quantal presynaptic transmitter release. In response to local BDNF application to CA1 pyramidal neurons, the frequency of miniature excitatory postsynaptic currents (mEPSC) increased significantly within 30 seconds; mEPSC amplitude and kinetics were unchanged. This effect was mediated via TrkB receptor activation and required both full intracellular Ca(2+) stores as well as extracellular Ca(2+). Consistent with a role of Ca(2+)-permeable plasma membrane channels of the TRPC family, the inhibitor SKF96365 prevented the BDNF-induced increase in mEPSC frequency. Furthermore, labeling presynaptic terminals with amphipathic styryl dyes and then monitoring their post-BDNF destaining in slice cultures by multiphoton excitation microscopy revealed that the increase in frequency of mEPSCs reflects vesicular fusion events. Indeed, BDNF application to CA3-CA1 synapses in TTX rapidly enhanced FM1-43 or FM2-10 destaining with a time course that paralleled the phase of increased mEPSC frequency. We conclude that BDNF increases mEPSC frequency by boosting vesicular fusion through a presynaptic, Ca(2+)-dependent mechanism involving TrkB receptors, Ca(2+) stores, and TRPC channels.

  8. Quantal currents evoked by graded intracellular depolarization of crayfish motor axon terminals.

    PubMed Central

    Atwood, H L; Parnas, H; Parnas, I; Wojtowicz, J M

    1987-01-01

    1. Quantal transmitter release was examined at nerve terminals of the excitatory motor axon of the crayfish opener muscle. The magnitude of synaptic currents, recorded with macro-patch electrodes at a nerve terminal, served as a measure of quantal size. Transmitter release was initiated by pulses of depolarizing current applied intracellularly to the axonal terminals after application of tetrodotoxin. Quantal release was altered by a variety of methods and the resulting quantal output and quantal size were measured. 2. Amplitude distributions of quantal events were obtained during experimental manipulations which altered the rate of quantal release by up to 25-fold. These manipulations consisted of: varying pulse amplitude or pulse duration; facilitating the release by prolonged depolarization; and application of a potassium channel blocker, 4-aminopyridine. 3. The amplitude of quantal events is impervious to marked changes in presynaptic depolarization and is not affected by experimental procedures which promote accumulation of calcium ions in the terminals. The vesicular mechanism of release, in which transmitter substance is prepackaged in vesicles which individually undergo exocytosis at a release zone, could account for the observed results. PMID:2888878

  9. A direct potential fitting RKR method: Semiclassical vs. quantal comparisons

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tellinghuisen, Joel

    2016-12-01

    Quantal and semiclassical (SC) eigenvalues are compared for three diatomic molecular potential curves: the X state of CO, the X state of Rb2, and the A state of I2. The comparisons show higher levels of agreement than generally recognized, when the SC calculations incorporate a quantum defect correction to the vibrational quantum number, in keeping with the Kaiser modification. One particular aspect of this is better agreement between quantal and SC estimates of the zero-point vibrational energy, supporting the need for the Y00 correction in this context. The pursuit of a direct-potential-fitting (DPF) RKR method is motivated by the notion that some of the limitations of RKR potentials may be innate, from their generation by an exact inversion of approximate quantities: the vibrational energy Gυ and rotational constant Bυ from least-squares analysis of spectroscopic data. In contrast, the DPF RKR method resembles the quantal DPF methods now increasingly used to analyze diatomic spectral data, but with the eigenvalues obtained from SC phase integrals. Application of this method to the analysis of 9500 assigned lines in the I2A ← X spectrum fails to alter the quantal-SC disparities found for the A-state RKR curve from a previous analysis. On the other hand, the SC method can be much faster than the quantal method in exploratory work with different potential functions, where it is convenient to use finite-difference methods to evaluate the partial derivatives required in nonlinear fitting.

  10. Quantal Heating of Conducting Electrons with Discrete Spectrum

    SciTech Connect

    Vitkalov, S. A.; Bykov, A. A.

    2011-12-23

    Usually heating of conducting electrons by dc electric field results in an increase of electron temperature. In this paper we show that the dc heating of 2D electrons, placed in quantized magnetic fields, results in a peculiar electron distribution, which has the same broadening or an effective 'temperature' as the unbiased electron system. The quantal heating, however, violates strongly the Ohm's Law. In the conducting system with discrete electron spectrum the quantal heating results in spectacular decrease of electron resistance and transition of the electrons into a state with zero differential resistance (ZDR). Finally the heating leads to apparent dc driven metal-insulator transition, which correlates with the transition into the ZDR state. The correlation is very unexpected and is not understood.

  11. Dose-response model for teratological experiments involving quantal responses

    SciTech Connect

    Rai, K.; Van Ryzin, J.

    1985-03-01

    This paper introduces a dose-response model for teratological quantal response data where the probability of response for an offspring from a female at a given dose varies with the litter size. The maximum likelihood estimators for the parameters of the model are given as the solution of a nonlinear iterative algorithm. Two methods of low-dose extrapolation are presented, one based on the litter size distribution and the other a conservative method. The resulting procedures are then applied to a teratological data set from the literature.

  12. Quantal basis of photoreceptor spectral sensitivity of Drosophila melanogaster

    PubMed Central

    1975-01-01

    Small potential fluctuations ("bumps"), boyh spontaneous and light induced, can be recorded intracellularly from the photoreceptors of Drosophila melanogaster. Statistical analyses of these bumps in the spectral range, 400-600 nm, lead to the following interpretations; (a) For weak stimuli at least, these bumps are the quantal units of the receptor potential. (b) Quanta of various wavelengths, when effectively absorbed, will elicit bumps of the same average size. (c) The spectral sensitivity of the receptor potential appears to have its origin in the relative efficiency of quantum bump production at different wavelengths, and not in the intrinsic difference in the properties of bumps produced by quanta of differenct wavelengths. PMID:809537

  13. Quantal regulation and exocytosis of platelet dense-body granules.

    PubMed

    Ge, Shencheng; Woo, Emily; Haynes, Christy L

    2011-11-16

    This study reports how quantal size, or the quantity of chemical messengers within a storage granule, is regulated in platelet dense-body granules via dynamic adaption of granule size according to changing levels of granule contents. Mechanistic studies using carbon-fiber microelectrode fast-scan cyclic voltammetry and amperometry methods correlated with transmission electron microscopy analysis reveal the impact of granule structural changes on granular content secretion kinetics and highlight the dynamic interplay between soluble granule contents and membrane components in exocytosis. Despite the distinct chemical profile of platelet dense-body granules, these secretory granules act according to general biochemical/biophysical phenomena using charge-charge interactions to sequester chemical messengers and employ known conserved exocytotic machinery to deliver them; therefore, the mechanistic information obtained herein further advances the general understanding of exocytosis while revealing fundamental details about blood platelets.

  14. Quantal analysis of excitatory synapses in rat hippocampal CA1 in vitro during low-frequency depression.

    PubMed Central

    Larkman, A U; Jack, J J; Stratford, K J

    1997-01-01

    1. We have performed a detailed quantal analysis of excitatory postsynaptic potentials (EPSPs) evoked by minimal extracellular stimulation in the CA1 region of slices of adult rat hippocampus maintained in vitro. 2. EPSPs were evoked at 2-5 Hz, and the eight that were analysed all showed at least a 50% depression of mean peak amplitude during recording. 3. EPSP amplitude fluctuations were analysed by three methods: the use of amplitude frequency histograms with clear and reliable peaks where available, graphs of the EPSP (coefficient of variation)-2 against EPSP mean, and analysis of EPSP mean and standard deviation assuming simple binomial statistics with the number of release sites (N) kept constant but the quantal size (Q) and the release probability (Pr) allowed to vary over time. 4. The results of the three analysis procedures were in good agreement. Seven EPSPs showed a substantial reduction in the mean number of quanta released per trial, and in three cases this was the predominant mechanism of the depression. Five EPSPs showed a substantial decrease in Q. Values for N ranged between 3 and 18, with a median of 6; Pr ranged between 0.14 and 0.81 and Q between 66 and 275 microV. 5. We used the Q estimates from the binomial method to correct the recorded EPSP amplitudes for changes in quantal size over time. For seven out of the eight EPSPs, this rescaling procedure allowed histograms with clear peaks to be obtained from longer runs of data, or improved the sharpness of the peaks in histograms from all the recorded data. The improvement in peak sharpness was assessed using an autocorrelation-based method. The correction was much less successful if the Q estimates were obtained with a variant of the binomial method in which Pr was held constant and N was allowed to vary. 6. The only simple explanation for the success of the correction procedure is that changes in quantal size were a major factor in obscuring peaks in histograms based on large numbers of trials

  15. Botulinum toxin inhibits quantal acetylcholine release and energy metabolism in the Torpedo electric organ.

    PubMed Central

    Dunant, Y; Esquerda, J E; Loctin, F; Marsal, J; Muller, D

    1987-01-01

    1. Type A Botulinum toxin (BoTX) blocked nerve-electroplaque transmission in small fragments of Torpedo marmorata electric organ incubated in vitro. The effect was observed either with the crystalline toxin complex (associated with haemagglutinin) or with the purified neurotoxin (molecular weight approximately 150,000). 2. The quantal content of the evoked post-synaptic response was reduced by BoTX but the quantum size remained unchanged till complete blockade of the evoked response. 3. Spontaneous electroplaque potentials were composed of two populations: one with a bell-shaped amplitude distribution (miniature potentials or quanta) and a population of small events with a skewed distribution (subminiatures). In BoTX-poisoned tissue, the bell-distributed miniatures progressively disappeared, but the subminiatures kept on occurring. Occasionally, larger spontaneous potentials with a slow time course were recorded; they were also BoTX resistant. 4. A biochemical assay showed that evoked acetylcholine (ACh) release was impaired by BoTX. During the period when evoked transmission was blocked, spontaneous ACh release transiently increased. 5. At the time of transmission blockade, there was no significant change of ACh content, of ACh turnover, of ACh repartition in the vesicle-bound and free compartments, or of the number of synaptic vesicles. 6. The amount of ATP was reduced to 50% by BoTX, and that of creatine phosphate (CrP) to less than 20%. The ATP-CrP-converting enzyme, creatine kinase, was inhibited in BoTX-poisoned tissue. 7. Thus, the electrophysiological effects of BoTX are very similar at the nerve-electroplaque and the neuromuscular junctions. The present work suggests in addition that suppression of quantal release by BoTX is related to marked alterations of the energy metabolism in the tissue. Images Plate 1 PMID:3656169

  16. Dynamin-2 Regulates Fusion Pore Expansion and Quantal Release through a Mechanism that Involves Actin Dynamics in Neuroendocrine Chromaffin Cells

    PubMed Central

    González-Jamett, Arlek M.; Momboisse, Fanny; Guerra, María José; Ory, Stéphane; Báez-Matus, Ximena; Barraza, Natalia; Calco, Valerie; Houy, Sébastien; Couve, Eduardo; Neely, Alan; Martínez, Agustín D.; Gasman, Stéphane; Cárdenas, Ana M.

    2013-01-01

    Over the past years, dynamin has been implicated in tuning the amount and nature of transmitter released during exocytosis. However, the mechanism involved remains poorly understood. Here, using bovine adrenal chromaffin cells, we investigated whether this mechanism rely on dynamin’s ability to remodel actin cytoskeleton. According to this idea, inhibition of dynamin GTPase activity suppressed the calcium-dependent de novo cortical actin and altered the cortical actin network. Similarly, expression of a small interfering RNA directed against dynamin-2, an isoform highly expressed in chromaffin cells, changed the cortical actin network pattern. Disruption of dynamin-2 function, as well as the pharmacological inhibition of actin polymerization with cytochalasine-D, slowed down fusion pore expansion and increased the quantal size of individual exocytotic events. The effects of cytochalasine-D and dynamin-2 disruption were not additive indicating that dynamin-2 and F-actin regulate the late steps of exocytosis by a common mechanism. Together our data support a model in which dynamin-2 directs actin polymerization at the exocytosis site where both, in concert, adjust the hormone quantal release to efficiently respond to physiological demands. PMID:23940613

  17. Sr2+ and quantal events at excitatory synapses between mouse hippocampal neurons in culture.

    PubMed

    Abdul-Ghani, M A; Valiante, T A; Pennefather, P S

    1996-08-15

    1. Whole-cell recording from pairs of adjacent mouse hippocampal neurons in culture was used to study the quantal properties of action potential-evoked excitatory synaptic transmission and to demonstrate the use of Sr2+ in quantifying those properties. 2. In the presence of extracellular Sr2+, excitatory postsynaptic currents (EPSCs) were followed by an after-discharge of miniature excitatory postsynaptic currents (mEPSCs) lasting 1-2 s and generated by evoked asynchronous release of presynaptic quanta of transmitter. Like the EPSC of which it is thought to be an extension, the after-discharge was modulated by procedures expected to modulate Sr2+ influx into the nerve terminal. The number of mEPSCs in the after-discharge was decreased by increasing extracellular [Mg2+], and increased by increasing extracellular [Sr2+] or increasing the number of action potentials used to evoke the after-discharge. 3. EPSCs recorded in media containing either 1 mM Ca2+ or 6 mM Sr2+ were of similar amplitude. Adding Sr2+ to low-Ca2+ media increased EPSC amplitude, while adding Sr2+ to high-Ca2+ media lowered EPSC amplitude. These results suggest that extracellular Sr2+ is less effective than Ca2+ in supporting quantal release. 4. The levels of extracellular Ca2+, Mg2+ and Sr2+ were adjusted so that most after-discharge mEPSCs were discrete and comparable in numbers to the quantal events that contributed to the corresponding evoked EPSCs. In a series of twenty-five pairs of neurons, the mean amplitude of mEPSCs recorded at -80 mV was 35 +/- 10 pA and the mean coefficient of variation was 0.50 +/- 0.10 (range, 0.26-0.62). The mEPSC amplitude histogram was positively skewed. 5. In ten pairs of neurons, the mean and variance of EPSCs and mEPSCs and quantal content were determined from samples of more than 100 evoked events (in superfusion solutions containing (mM): 0.5 Ca2+, 2 Sr2+ and 10 Mg2+) and mean quantal content was determined from the ratio of amplitudes of the mean EPSC and m

  18. Illustrating Concepts of Quantal Analysis with an Intuitive Classroom Model

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Xu-Friedman, Matthew A.

    2013-01-01

    The quantal hypothesis is central to the modern understanding of how a neurotransmitter is released from synapses. This hypothesis expresses that a neurotransmitter is packaged together in quanta that are released probabilistically. The experiments that led to the quantal hypothesis are often related in introductory neuroscience textbooks, but…

  19. Gregariousness increases brain size in ungulates.

    PubMed

    Pérez-Barbería, F Javier; Gordon, Iain J

    2005-08-01

    The brain's main function is to organise the physiological and behavioural responses to environmental and social challenges in order to keep the organism alive. Here, we studied the effects that gregariousness (as a measurement of sociality), dietary habits, gestation length and sex have on brain size of extant ungulates. The analysis controlled for the effects of phylogeny and for random variability implicit in the data set. We tested the following groups of hypotheses: (1) Social brain hypothesis-gregarious species are more likely to have larger brains than non-gregarious species because the former are subjected to demanding and complex social interactions; (2) Ecological hypothesis-dietary habits impose challenging cognitive tasks associated with finding and manipulating food (foraging strategy); (3) Developmental hypotheses (a) energy strategy: selection for larger brains operates, primarily, on maternal metabolic turnover (i.e. gestation length) in relation to food quality because the majority of the brain's growth takes place in utero, and finally (b) sex hypothesis: females are expected to have larger brains than males, relative to body size, because of the differential growth rates of the soma and brain between the sexes. We found that, after adjusting for body mass, gregariousness and gestation length explained most of the variation in brain mass across the ungulate species studied. Larger species had larger brains; gregarious species and those with longer gestation lengths, relative to body mass, had larger brains than non-gregarious species and those with shorter gestation lengths. The effect of diet was negligible and subrogated by gestation length, and sex had no significant effect on brain size. The ultimate cause that could have triggered the co-evolution between gestation length and brain size remains unclear.

  20. Effect of N-acetylaspartylglutamate (NAAG) on non-quantal and spontaneous quantal release of acetylcholine at the neuromuscular synapse of rat.

    PubMed

    Malomouzh, Artem I; Nikolsky, Eugen E; Lieberman, Edward M; Sherman, Jessica A; Lubischer, Jane L; Grossfeld, Robert M; Urazaev, Albert Kh

    2005-07-01

    N-Acetylaspartylglutamate (NAAG), known to be present in rat motor neurons, may participate in neuronal modulation of non-quantal secretion of acetylcholine (ACh) from motor nerve terminals. Non-quantal release of ACh was estimated by the amplitude of the endplate membrane hyperpolarization (H-effect) caused by inhibition of nicotinic receptors by (+)-tubocurarine and acetylcholinesterase by armin (diethoxy-p-nitrophenyl phosphate). Application of exogenous NAAG decreased the H-effect in a dose-dependent manner. The reduction of the H-effect by NAAG was completely removed when N-acetyl-beta-aspartylglutamate (betaNAAG) or 2-(phosphonomethyl)-pentanedioic acid (2-PMPA) was used to inhibit glutamate carboxypeptidase II (GCP II), a presynaptic Schwann cell membrane-associated ectoenzyme that hydrolyzes NAAG to glutamate and N-acetylaspartate. Bath application of glutamate decreased the H-effect similarly to the action of NAAG but N-acetylaspartate was without effect. Inhibition of NMDA receptors by dl-2-amino-5-phosphopentanoic acid, (+)-5-methyl-10,11-dihydro-5H-dibenzocyclohepten-5,10-imine (MK801), and 7-chlorokynurenic acid or inhibition of muscle nitric oxide synthase (NO synthase) by N(G)-nitro-l-arginine methyl ester and 3-bromo-7-nitroindazole completely prevented the decrease of the H-effect by NAAG. These results suggest that glutamate, produced by enzymatic hydrolysis of bath-applied NAAG, can modulate non-quantal secretion of ACh from the presynaptic terminal of the neuromuscular synapse via activation of postsynaptic NMDA receptors and synthesis of nitric oxide (NO) in muscle fibers. NAAG also increased the frequency of miniature endplate potentials (mEPPs) generated by spontaneous quantal secretion of ACh, whereas the mean amplitude and time constants for rise time and for decay of mEPPs did not change.

  1. The quantal component of synaptic transmission from sensory hair cells to the vestibular calyx.

    PubMed

    Highstein, Stephen M; Mann, Mary Anne; Holstein, Gay R; Rabbitt, Richard D

    2015-06-01

    Spontaneous and stimulus-evoked excitatory postsynaptic currents (EPSCs) were recorded in calyx nerve terminals from the turtle vestibular lagena to quantify key attributes of quantal transmission at this synapse. On average, EPSC events had a magnitude of ∼ 42 pA, a rise time constant of τ(0) ∼ 229 μs, decayed to baseline with a time constant of τ(R) ∼ 690 μs, and carried ∼ 46 fC of charge. Individual EPSCs varied in magnitude and decay time constant. Variability in the EPSC decay time constant was hair cell dependent and due in part to a slow protraction of the EPSC in some cases. Variability in EPSC size was well described by an integer summation of unitary quanta, with each quanta of glutamate gating a unitary postsynaptic current of ∼ 23 pA. The unitary charge was ∼ 26 fC for EPSCs with a simple exponential decay and increased to ∼ 48 fC for EPSCs exhibiting a slow protraction. The EPSC magnitude and the number of simultaneous unitary quanta within each event increased with presynaptic stimulus intensity. During tonic hair cell depolarization, both the EPSC magnitude and event rate exhibited adaptive run down over time. Present data from a reptilian calyx are remarkably similar to noncalyceal vestibular synaptic terminals in diverse species, indicating that the skewed EPSC size distribution and multiquantal release might be an ancestral property of inner ear ribbon synapses.

  2. Quantal transmission at mossy fibre targets in the CA3 region of the rat hippocampus.

    PubMed

    Lawrence, J Josh; Grinspan, Zachary M; McBain, Chris J

    2004-01-01

    Recent anatomical evidence that inhibitory interneurones receive approximately 10 times more synapses from mossy fibres than do principal neurones (Acsády et al. 1998) has led to the re-examination of the extent to which interneurones are involved in CA3 network excitability. Although many of the anatomical and physiological properties of mossy fibre-CA3 interneurone synapses have been previously described (Acsády et al. 1998; Tóth et al. 2000), an investigation into the quantal nature of transmission at this synapse has not yet been conducted. Here, we employed variance-mean (VM) analysis to compare the release probability, quantal size (q) and number of release sites (n) at mossy fibre target neurones in CA3. At six of seven interneurone synapses in which a high concentration of Ca2+ was experimentally imposed, the variance-mean relationship could be approximated by a parabola. Estimates of n were 1-2, and the weighted release probability in normal Ca2+ conditions ranged from 0.34 to 0.51. At pyramidal cell synapses, the variance-mean relationship approximated a linear relationship, suggesting that release probability was significantly lower. The weighted quantal amplitude was similar at interneurone synapses and pyramidal cell synapses, although the variability in quantal amplitude was larger at interneurone synapses. Mossy fibre transmission at CA3 interneurone synapses can be explained by a lower number of release sites, a broader range of release probabilities, and larger range of quantal amplitudes than at CA3 pyramidal synapses. Finally, quantal events on to interneurones elicited spike transmission, owing in part to the more depolarized membrane potential than pyramidal cells. These results suggest that although mossy fibre synapses on to pyramidal cells are associated with a larger number of release sites per synapse, the higher connectivity, higher initial release probability, and larger relative impact per quantum on to CA3 interneurones generate

  3. LNG fleet increases in size and capabilities

    SciTech Connect

    Linser, H.J. Jr.; Drudy, M.J.; Endrizzi, F.; Urbanelli, A.A.

    1997-06-02

    The LNG fleet as of early 1997 consisted of 99 vessels with total cargo capacity of 10.7 million cu m, equivalent to approximately 4.5 million tons. One of the newest additions to the fleet, the 137,000-cu m tanker Al Zubarah, is five times the size of the original commercial vessel Methane Princess. Al Zubarah`s first loading of more than 60,000 tons occurred in December 1996 for deliver to Japanese buyers from the newly commissioned Qatargas LNG plant at Ras Laffan. That size cargo contains enough clean-burning energy to heat 60,000 homes in Japan for 1 month. Measuring nearly 1,000 ft long, the tanker is among the largest in the industry fleet and joined 70 other vessels of more than 100,000 cu m. Most LNG tankers built since 1975 have been larger-capacity vessels. The paper discusses LNG shipping requirements, containment systems, vessel design, propulsion, construction, operations and maintenance, and the future for larger vessels.

  4. Quantal nucleon diffusion: Central collisions of symmetric nuclei

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ayik, S.; Yilmaz, O.; Yilmaz, B.; Umar, A. S.

    2016-10-01

    The quantal diffusion mechanism of nucleon exchange is studied in the central collisions of several symmetric heavy ions in the framework of the stochastic mean-field (SMF) approach. Since, at bombarding energies below the fusion barrier, dinuclear structure is maintained, it is possible to describe nucleon exchange as a diffusion process familiar from deep-inelastic collisions. Quantal diffusion coefficients, including memory effects, for proton and neutron exchanges are extracted microscopically employing the SMF approach. The quantal calculations of neutron and proton variances are compared with the semiclassical results.

  5. Cholinergic regulation of the evoked quantal release at frog neuromuscular junction

    PubMed Central

    Nikolsky, Eugeny E; Vyskočil, František; Bukharaeva, Ella A; Samigullin, Dmitry; Magazanik, Lev G

    2004-01-01

    The effects of cholinergic drugs on the quantal contents of the nerve-evoked endplate currents (EPCs) and the parameters of the time course of quantal release (minimal synaptic latency, main modal value of latency histogram and variability of synaptic latencies) were studied at proximal, central and distal regions of the frog neuromuscular synapse. Acetylcholine (ACh, 5 × 10−4 m), carbachol (CCh, 1 × 10−5 m) or nicotine (5 × 10−6 m) increased the numbers of EPCs with long release latencies mainly in the distal region of the endplate (90–120 μm from the last node of Ranvier), where the synchronization of transmitter release was the most pronounced. The parameters of focally recorded motor nerve action potentials were not changed by either ACh or CCh. The effects of CCh and nicotine on quantal dispersion were reduced substantially by 5 × 10−7 m (+)tubocurarine (TC). The muscarinic agonists, oxotremorine and the propargyl ester of arecaidine, as well as antagonists such as pirenzepine, AF-DX 116 and methoctramine, alone or in combination, did not affect the dispersion of the release. Muscarinic antagonists did not block the dispersion action of CCh. Cholinergic drugs either decreased the quantal content mo (muscarinic agonist, oxotremorine M, and nicotinic antagonist, TC), or decreased mo and dispersed the release (ACh, CCh and nicotine). The effects on mo were not related either to the endplate region or to the initial level of release dispersion. It follows that the mechanisms regulating the amount and the time course of transmitter release are different and that, among other factors, they are altered by presynaptic nicotinic receptors. PMID:15254150

  6. Quantal Aspects of - Energy Transfer and Photodissociation of Oscillators.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tanner, John Joseph

    1988-12-01

    Our first chapter examines the mechanism by which molecular rotation enhances vibrational relaxation of a diatomic molecule. Three factors are discussed, lowering by rotational transitions of the vibrational energy defect, coupling due to potential matrix elements off diagonal in rotational state, and additional phase shifts introduced into the incoming and outgoing waves by anisotropy in the intermolecular potential. The distorted wave solution of the coupled states scattering equations elucidates the importance of each factor for H_2(v = 1) - He, CO(v = 1) - H_2, and for vibrational energy transfer from H_2 (v = 1) to CO(v = 0,1,2). Rotation is found to play both an energetic and a dynamical role. In the energetic role, rotation lowers the vibrational energy defect and thereby enhances vibrational relaxation, while the dynamic contribution takes the form of additional phase shifts introduced into the incoming and outgoing waves by the potential anisotropy. Our results suggest that molecular anisotropy in the region of the classical turning point is an important factor in the rotational enhancement observed in recent comparisons of CSA and IOSA vibrational relaxation rate constants for the N_2-He and CO-He systems. In the second chapter we study the response of a highly excited Morse oscillator with 179 bound states to an intense, below resonance electromagnetic field. A dynamic, quantal description of dissociation is obtained from an inspection of the time dependent wavefunction. The bound to continuum transitions which occur during dissociation involve the emission of a high energy, coherent wave which propagates to infinity--a feature not observed in other studies of the periodically driven Morse oscillator. Initially, the exodus of this wave results in a rapid increase in the dissociation probability. However, at longer times the dissociation slows down and concurrently the system is localized in the bound state basis, indicating that even though the classical

  7. The effects of increased serving sizes on consumption.

    PubMed

    Hydock, Chris; Wilson, Anne; Easwar, Karthik

    2016-06-01

    The US Food and Drug Administration recently revealed that it is considering modifying the Nutrition Facts Panels required on packaged foods. One proposed change is increasing serving sizes included on labels, which has two potential implications. Larger serving sizes could increase consumption if consumers use the serving sizes displayed as a reference point for their own consumption (McFerran et al., 2010). Alternatively, larger serving sizes that depict increased values of negative nutrients (e.g. calories) could lead consumers to perceive foods as less healthy, thereby reducing consumption (Russo et al., 1986). In study 1 (Online sample, N = 208, Mage = 32, SDage = 12), participants saw pictures of packaged food items and nutrition labels. The labels, depicted either the existing or larger serving size. Across all foods, larger serving sizes led to lower health perceptions. Labels with larger serving sizes were rated as more representative of typical consumption. Study 2 (Online sample, N = 347, Mage = 31, SDage = 10) used the same design as study 1, but required participants to virtually portion foods. While serving sizes did not impact the amount of food consumers portioned, those who saw labels with larger serving sizes estimated that they portioned out more calories. In study 3 (Student sample, N = 198, Mage = 20, SDage = 1), participants were given M&Ms to eat, paired with a nutritional label depicting either the current or a larger serving size, while participating in unrelated surveys. Participants presented with the larger serving size label consumed less than those presented with the current serving size label. Together, the results suggest that the proposed increase in serving sizes on Nutrition Facts Panels could lower consumption of high-calorie foods.

  8. Faster kinetics of quantal catecholamine release in mouse chromaffin cells stimulated with acetylcholine, compared with other secretagogues.

    PubMed

    Calvo-Gallardo, Enrique; López-Gil, Ángela; Méndez-López, Iago; Martínez-Ramírez, Carmen; Padín, Juan Fernando; García, Antonio G

    2016-12-01

    Adrenal chromaffin cells (CCs) have been used extensively in studies aimed at revealing the intricacies of the Ca(2+) -dependent early and late steps of regulated exocytosis. They have also served as invaluable models to study the kinetics of single-vesicle exocytotic events to infer the characteristics of opening and closing of the exocytotic fusion pore. We have here tested the hypothesis that stimulation at room temperature of CCs from mice C57BL/6 with physiological acetylcholine (ACh) and with other secretagogues (dimethylphenylpiperazinium, high K(+) , muscarine, histamine, caffeine), alone or in combination, could trigger amperometric spike events with different kinetics. We found that mean secretory spike events in CCs stimulated with ACh had a fast rise rate of 25 pA/ms and a rapid decay time of 6.2 ms, with a small quantal size (0.31 pC). Surprisingly, these parameters considerably differed from those found in CCs stimulated with all other secretagogues that triggered secretory responses with spike events having smaller rise rates, longer decay times and higher quantal sizes. ACh spikes were unaltered by atropine but mitochondrial protonophore carbonyl cyanide-4-(trifluoromethoxy)phenylhydrazone markedly slowed down the rate rise and decay time, and augmented the quantal size of mean secretory events. We conclude that the physiological neurotransmitter ACh triggers a fast and efficient exocytotic response that cannot be mimicked by other secretagogues; such response is regulated by the mitochondrial circulation of calcium ions.

  9. Classical wall formula and quantal one-body dissipation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Griffin, J. J.; Dworzecka, M.

    1986-07-01

    Within the quantal, self-consistent RPA description of the dissipation of nuclear collective energy, a specific set of assumptions is shown to reduce the RPA system to a vibrating potential model which, with the stipulation of certain additional assumptions, yields precisely the dissipation rate given by the Swiatecki wall formula. This correspondence is utilized to explore the explicit and the implicit assumptions of the wall model. Various implications emerge, the most important of which is the fact that, for finite nucleonic binding energy, the true one-body dissipation rate of giant resonance states is reduced by about an order of magnitude from the wall formula value. The wall formula overestimate is due mostly to the fiction it assumes ab initio that all particles are totally reflected at the wall, whereas realistically only bound particles can be totally reflected. In addition, the self-consistency of the quantal description implies that no dissipation occurs to the bound one-particle one-hole subspace from which the RPA phonon is constructed, imposing an absolute prohibition of one-body dissipation for phonon energies less than the nucleonic binding energy. Finally, the quantal dissipation rate exhibits an explicit, but relatively weak, dependence upon the collective phonon energy, ħω. The result is that the wall formula yields a gross overestimate of the quantal one-body dissipation rate over the whole range of realistic nuclear situations.

  10. Computer Simulation of Quantal Dose-Response Relationships.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    McGilliard, Kip L.

    1985-01-01

    Describes a program which simulates animal pharmacology experiments involving "all-or-none" responses. Use of the Applesoft BASIC program in the pharmacology teaching laboratory provides students with a rapid and economical way to gain experience in the design and statistical analysis of quantal dose-response experiments. Information on…

  11. Increases in disturbance and reductions in habitat size interact to suppress predator body size.

    PubMed

    Jellyman, Phillip G; McHugh, Peter A; McIntosh, Angus R

    2014-05-01

    Food webs are strongly size-structured so will be vulnerable to changes in environmental factors that affect large predators. However, mechanistic understanding of environmental controls of top predator size is poorly developed. We used streams to investigate how predator body size is altered by three fundamental climate change stressors: reductions in habitat size, increases in disturbance and warmer temperatures. Using new survey data from 74 streams, we showed that habitat size and disturbance were the most important stressors influencing predator body size. A synergistic interaction between that habitat size and disturbance due to flooding meant the sizes of predatory fishes peaked in large, benign habitats and their body size decreased as habitats became either smaller or harsher. These patterns were supported by experiments indicating that habitat-size reductions and increased flood disturbance decreased both the abundance and biomass of large predators. This research indicates that interacting climate change stressors can influence predator body size, resulting in smaller predators than would be predicted from examining an environmental factor in isolation. Thus, climate-induced changes to key interacting environmental factors are likely to have synergistic impacts on predator body size which, because of their influence on the strength of biological interactions, will have far-reaching effects on food-web responses to global environmental change.

  12. Ciguatoxin enhances quantal transmitter release from frog motor nerve terminals.

    PubMed Central

    Molgó, J.; Comella, J. X.; Legrand, A. M.

    1990-01-01

    1. Ciguatoxin (CTX), a marine toxin produced by the benthic dinoflagellate Gambierdiscus toxicus, is responsible for a complex endemic disease in man known as ciguatera fish poisoning. In the present study we have investigated the effects of purified CTX extracted for Gymnothorax javanicus moray-eel liver on frog isolated neuromuscular preparations with conventional electrophysiological techniques. 2. CTX (1-2.5 nM) applied to cutaneous pectoris nerve-muscle preparations induced, after a short delay, spontaneous fibrillations of the muscle fibres that could be suppressed with 1 microM tetrodotoxin (TTX) or by formamide to uncouple excitation-contraction. 3. In preparations treated with formamide, CTX (1-2.5 nM) caused either spontaneous or repetitive muscle action potentials (up to frequencies of 60-100 Hz) in response to a single nerve stimulus. Recordings performed at extrajunctional regions of the muscle membrane revealed that during the repetitive firing a prolongation of the repolarizing phase of the action potential occurred. At junctional sites the repetitive action potentials were triggered by repetitive endplate potentials (e.p.ps). 4. CTX (2.5 nM) caused a TTX-sensitive depolarization of the muscle membrane. 5. In junctions equilibrated in solutions containing high Mg2+ + low Ca2+, addition of CTX (1.5 nM) first induced an average increase of 239 +/- 36% in the mean quantal content of e.p.ps. Subsequently CTX reduced and finally blocked nerve-evoked transmitter release irreversibly. 6. CTX (1.5-2.5 nM) increased the frequency of miniature endplate potentials (m.e.p.ps) in junctions bathed either in normal Ringer, low Ca2(+)-high Mg2+ medium or in a nominally Ca2(+)-free solution containing EGTA.2+ Extensive washing with toxin-free solutions did not reverse the effect.(ABSTRACT TRUNCATED AT 250 WORDS) PMID:1972891

  13. Genome size increases in recently diverged hornwort clades.

    PubMed

    Bainard, Jillian D; Villarreal, Juan Carlos

    2013-08-01

    As our knowledge of plant genome size estimates continues to grow, one group has continually been neglected: the hornworts. Hornworts (Anthocerotophyta) have been traditionally grouped with liverworts and mosses because they share a haploid dominant life cycle; however, recent molecular studies place hornworts as the sister lineage to extant tracheophytes. Given the scarcity of information regarding the DNA content of hornworts, our objective was to estimate the 1C-value for a range of hornwort species within a phylogenetic context. Using flow cytometry, we estimated genome size for 36 samples representing 24 species. This accounts for roughly 10% of known hornwort species. Haploid genome sizes (1C-value) ranged from 160 Mbp or 0.16 pg (Leiosporoceros dussii) to 719 Mbp or 0.73 pg (Nothoceros endiviifolius). The average 1C-value was 261 ± 104 Mbp (0.27 ± 0.11 pg). Ancestral reconstruction of genome size on a hornwort phylogeny suggests a small ancestral genome size and revealed increases in genome size in the most recently divergent clades. Much more work is needed to understand DNA content variation in this phylogenetically important group, but this work has significantly increased our knowledge of genome size variation in hornworts.

  14. Economic Effects of Increased Control Zone Sizes in Conflict Resolution

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Datta, Koushik

    1998-01-01

    A methodology for estimating the economic effects of different control zone sizes used in conflict resolutions between aircraft is presented in this paper. The methodology is based on estimating the difference in flight times of aircraft with and without the control zone, and converting the difference into a direct operating cost. Using this methodology the effects of increased lateral and vertical control zone sizes are evaluated.

  15. A computer system for real-time data acquisition and analysis of biopotentials and quantal content at the neuromuscular junction.

    PubMed

    Liu, H H; Kim, Y I

    1983-06-01

    A computerized data acquisition system for on-line analysis of the parameters of neuromuscular transmission is described. Both hardware usage and software methodologies are discussed with regard to sampling in real-time and analyzing miniature end-plate potentials (MEPPs), end-plate potentials (EPPs) and quantal content of the evoked transmitter release. Significant features of the program include: (1) automatic threshold determination for MEPP detection; (2) the use of a circular buffer to give pre-trigger information; (3) real-time noise spike rejection; (4) an automatic procedure for EPP failure detection; (5) rapid quantal content determinations by several methods as well as complete MEPP and EPP waveform analysis. The system has proven both accurate and reliable during more than two years of use. Advantages of the system over conventional methods include: (1) increased accuracy and efficiency in data analysis; (2) immediate availability of results; (3) conventional data storage; (4) flexibility to meet changing requirements.

  16. Mixed quantal-semiquantal dynamics with stochastic particles for backreaction

    SciTech Connect

    Ando, Koji

    2014-10-14

    A mixed quantal-semiquantal theory is presented in which the semiquantal squeezed-state wave packet describes the heavy degrees of freedom. Starting from the mean-field equations of motion that are naturally derived from the time-dependent variational principle, we introduce the stochastic particle description for both the quantal and semiquantal parts in an aim to take into account the interparticle correlation, in particular the “quantum backreaction” beyond the mean-field approximation. A numerical application on a model of O{sub 2} scattering from a Pt surface demonstrates that the proposed scheme gives correct asymptotic behavior of the scattering probability, with improvement over the mixed quantum-classical scheme with Bohmian particles, which is comprehended by comparing the Bohmian and the stochastic trajectories.

  17. Rate of tree carbon accumulation increases continuously with tree size

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Stephenson, N.L.; Das, A.J.; Condit, R.; Russo, S.E.; Baker, P.J.; Beckman, N.G.; Coomes, D.A.; Lines, E.R.; Morris, W.K.; Rüger, N.; Álvarez, E.; Blundo, C.; Bunyavejchewin, S.; Chuyong, G.; Davies, S.J.; Duque, Á.; Ewango, C.N.; Flores, O.; Franklin, J.F.; Grau, H.R.; Hao, Z.; Harmon, M.E.; Hubbell, S.P.; Kenfack, D.; Lin, Y.; Makana, J.-R.; Malizia, A.; Malizia, L.R.; Pabst, R.J.; Pongpattananurak, N.; Su, S.-H.; Sun, I-F.; Tan, S.; Thomas, D.; van Mantgem, P.J.; Wang, X.; Wiser, S.K.; Zavala, M.A.

    2014-01-01

    Forests are major components of the global carbon cycle, providing substantial feedback to atmospheric greenhouse gas concentrations. Our ability to understand and predict changes in the forest carbon cycle—particularly net primary productivity and carbon storage - increasingly relies on models that represent biological processes across several scales of biological organization, from tree leaves to forest stands. Yet, despite advances in our understanding of productivity at the scales of leaves and stands, no consensus exists about the nature of productivity at the scale of the individual tree, in part because we lack a broad empirical assessment of whether rates of absolute tree mass growth (and thus carbon accumulation) decrease, remain constant, or increase as trees increase in size and age. Here we present a global analysis of 403 tropical and temperate tree species, showing that for most species mass growth rate increases continuously with tree size. Thus, large, old trees do not act simply as senescent carbon reservoirs but actively fix large amounts of carbon compared to smaller trees; at the extreme, a single big tree can add the same amount of carbon to the forest within a year as is contained in an entire mid-sized tree. The apparent paradoxes of individual tree growth increasing with tree size despite declining leaf-level and stand-level productivity can be explained, respectively, by increases in a tree’s total leaf area that outpace declines in productivity per unit of leaf area and, among other factors, age-related reductions in population density. Our results resolve conflicting assumptions about the nature of tree growth, inform efforts to understand and model forest carbon dynamics, and have additional implications for theories of resource allocation and plant senescence.

  18. Rate of tree carbon accumulation increases continuously with tree size.

    PubMed

    Stephenson, N L; Das, A J; Condit, R; Russo, S E; Baker, P J; Beckman, N G; Coomes, D A; Lines, E R; Morris, W K; Rüger, N; Alvarez, E; Blundo, C; Bunyavejchewin, S; Chuyong, G; Davies, S J; Duque, A; Ewango, C N; Flores, O; Franklin, J F; Grau, H R; Hao, Z; Harmon, M E; Hubbell, S P; Kenfack, D; Lin, Y; Makana, J-R; Malizia, A; Malizia, L R; Pabst, R J; Pongpattananurak, N; Su, S-H; Sun, I-F; Tan, S; Thomas, D; van Mantgem, P J; Wang, X; Wiser, S K; Zavala, M A

    2014-03-06

    Forests are major components of the global carbon cycle, providing substantial feedback to atmospheric greenhouse gas concentrations. Our ability to understand and predict changes in the forest carbon cycle--particularly net primary productivity and carbon storage--increasingly relies on models that represent biological processes across several scales of biological organization, from tree leaves to forest stands. Yet, despite advances in our understanding of productivity at the scales of leaves and stands, no consensus exists about the nature of productivity at the scale of the individual tree, in part because we lack a broad empirical assessment of whether rates of absolute tree mass growth (and thus carbon accumulation) decrease, remain constant, or increase as trees increase in size and age. Here we present a global analysis of 403 tropical and temperate tree species, showing that for most species mass growth rate increases continuously with tree size. Thus, large, old trees do not act simply as senescent carbon reservoirs but actively fix large amounts of carbon compared to smaller trees; at the extreme, a single big tree can add the same amount of carbon to the forest within a year as is contained in an entire mid-sized tree. The apparent paradoxes of individual tree growth increasing with tree size despite declining leaf-level and stand-level productivity can be explained, respectively, by increases in a tree's total leaf area that outpace declines in productivity per unit of leaf area and, among other factors, age-related reductions in population density. Our results resolve conflicting assumptions about the nature of tree growth, inform efforts to undertand and model forest carbon dynamics, and have additional implications for theories of resource allocation and plant senescence.

  19. Trees increase their P:N ratio with size

    PubMed Central

    Sardans, J; Peñuelas, J.

    2015-01-01

    Aim Phosphorus (P) tends to become limiting in aging terrestrial ecosystems, and its resorption efficiency is higher than for other elements such as nitrogen (N). We thus hypothesized that trees should store more P than those other elements such as N when tree size increases and that this process should be enhanced in slow-growing late successional trees. Location Catalan forests. Methods We have used data from the Catalan Forest Inventory that contains field data of the P and N contents of total aboveground, foliar and woody biomasses of the diverse Mediterranean, temperate and alpine forests of Catalonia (1018 sites). We used correlation and general lineal models (GLM) to analyze the allometric relationships between nutrient contents of different aboveground biomass fractions (foliar, branches and stems) and total aboveground biomass. Results Aboveground forest P content increases proportionally more than aboveground forest N content with increasing aboveground biomass. Two mechanisms underlie this. First, woody biomass increases proportionally more than foliar biomass having woody biomass higher P:N ratio than foliar biomass. Second, wood P:N ratio increases with tree size. These results are consistent with the generally higher foliar resorption of P than of N. Slow-growing species accumulate more P in total aboveground with size than fast-growing species mainly as a result of their large capacity to store P in wood. Main conclusions Trees may have thus developed long-term adaptive mechanisms to store P in biomass, mainly in wood, thereby slowing the loss of P from the ecosystems, reducing its availability for competitors, and implying an increase in the P:N ratio in forest biomass with aging. This trend to accumulate more P than N with size is more accentuated in slow-growing, large, long-living species of late successional stages. This way they partly counterbalance the gradual decrease of P in the soil. PMID:25983656

  20. Individual increase in inbreeding allows estimating effective sizes from pedigrees

    PubMed Central

    Gutiérrez, Juan Pablo; Cervantes, Isabel; Molina, Antonio; Valera, Mercedes; Goyache, Félix

    2008-01-01

    We present here a simple approach to obtain reliable estimates of the effective population size in real world populations via the computation of the increase in inbreeding for each individual (delta Fi) in a given population. The values of delta Fi are computed as t-root of 1 - (1 - Fi) where Fi is the inbreeding coefficient and t is the equivalent complete generations for each individual. The values of delta F computed for a pre-defined reference subset can be averaged and used to estimate effective size. A standard error of this estimate of Ne can be further computed from the standard deviation of the individual increase in inbreeding. The methodology is demonstrated by applying it to several simulated examples and to a real pedigree in which other methodologies fail when considering reference subpopulations. The main characteristics of the approach and its possible use are discussed both for predictive purposes and for analyzing genealogies. PMID:18558071

  1. Fully automated microchip system for the detection of quantal exocytosis from single and small ensembles of cells.

    PubMed

    Spégel, Christer; Heiskanen, Arto; Pedersen, Simon; Emnéus, Jenny; Ruzgas, Tautgirdas; Taboryski, Rafael

    2008-02-01

    A lab-on-a-chip device that enables positioning of single or small ensembles of cells on an aperture in close proximity to a mercaptopropionic acid (MPA) modified sensing electrode has been developed and characterized. The microchip was used for the detection of Ca(2+)-dependent quantal catecholamine exocytosis from single as well as small assemblies of rat pheochromocytoma (PC12) cells. The frequency of events increased considerably upon depolarization of the PC12 cell membrane using a high extracelluar concentration of potassium. The number of recorded events could be correlated with the number of cells immobilized on the electrode. Quantal characteristics, such as the number of released molecules per recorded event, are equivalent to data obtained using conventional carbon fiber microelectrodes. The detection sensitivity of the device allows for the detection of less than 10 000 dopamine molecules in a quantal release. The distribution of peak rise-time and full width at half maximum was constant during measurement periods of several minutes demonstrating the stability of the MPA modified surface.

  2. Pupillometry reveals increased pupil size during indirect request comprehension.

    PubMed

    Tromp, Johanne; Hagoort, Peter; Meyer, Antje S

    2016-01-01

    Fluctuations in pupil size have been shown to reflect variations in processing demands during lexical and syntactic processing in language comprehension. An issue that has not received attention is whether pupil size also varies due to pragmatic manipulations. In two pupillometry experiments, we investigated whether pupil diameter was sensitive to increased processing demands as a result of comprehending an indirect request versus a direct statement. Adult participants were presented with 120 picture-sentence combinations that could be interpreted either as an indirect request (a picture of a window with the sentence "it's very hot here") or as a statement (a picture of a window with the sentence "it's very nice here"). Based on the hypothesis that understanding indirect utterances requires additional inferences to be made on the part of the listener, we predicted a larger pupil diameter for indirect requests than statements. The results of both experiments are consistent with this expectation. We suggest that the increase in pupil size reflects additional processing demands for the comprehension of indirect requests as compared to statements. This research demonstrates the usefulness of pupillometry as a tool for experimental research in pragmatics.

  3. Increase in average testis size of Canadian beef bulls.

    PubMed

    García Guerra, Alvaro; Hendrick, Steve; Barth, Albert D

    2013-05-01

    Selection for adequate testis size in beef bulls is an important part of bull breeding soundness evaluation. Scrotal circumference (SC) is highly correlated with paired testis weight and is a practical method for estimating testis weight in the live animal. Most bulls presented for sale in Canada have SC included in the presale information. Scrotal circumference varies by age and breed, and may change over time due to selection for larger testis size. Therefore, it is important to periodically review the mean SC of various cattle breeds to provide valid bull selection criteria. Scrotal circumference data were obtained from bulls sold in western Canada from 2008 to 2011 and in Quebec from 2006 to 2010. Average scrotal circumferences for the most common beef breeds in Canada have increased significantly in the last 25 years. Differences between breeds have remained unchanged and Simmental bulls still have the largest SC at 1 year of age. Data provided here could aid in the establishment of new suggested minimum SC measurements for beef bulls.

  4. Dynamics of Quantal Heating in Electron Systems with Discrete Spectra

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mayer, William; Dietrich, Scott; Vitkalov, Sergey; Bykov, Alexey

    2015-03-01

    The temporal evolution of quantal Joule heating of 2D electrons in GaAs quantum well placed in quantizing magnetic fields is studied using a difference frequency method. The method is based on measurements of the electron conductivity oscillating at the beat frequency f =f1 -f2 between two microwaves applied to 2D system at frequencies f1 and f2. The method provides direct access to the dynamical characteristics of the heating and yields the inelastic scattering time τin of 2D electrons. The obtained τin is strongly temperature dependent, varying from 0.13 ns at 5.5K to 1 ns at 2.4K in magnetic field B=0.333T. When temperature T exceeds the Landau level separation the relaxation rate 1 /τin is proportional to T2, indicating the electron-electron interaction as the dominant mechanism limiting the quantal heating. At lower temperatures the rate tends to be proportional to T3, indicating considerable contribution from electron-phonon scattering. This work was supported by the National Science Foundation (DMR 1104503), the Russian Foundation for Basic Research (project no.14-02-01158) and the Ministry of Education and Science of the Russian Federation.

  5. A Microscopic Quantal Model for Nuclear Collective Rotation

    SciTech Connect

    Gulshani, P.

    2007-10-26

    A microscopic, quantal model to describe nuclear collective rotation in two dimensions is derived from the many-nucleon Schrodinger equation. The Schrodinger equation is transformed to a body-fixed frame to decompose the Hamiltonian into a sum of intrinsic and rotational components plus a Coriolis-centrifugal coupling term. This Hamiltonian (H) is expressed in terms of space-fixed-frame particle coordinates and momenta by using commutator of H with a rotation angle. A unified-rotational-model type wavefunction is used to obtain an intrinsic Schrodinger equation in terms of angular momentum quantum number and two-body operators. A Hartree-Fock mean-field representation of this equation is then obtained and, by means of a unitary transformation, is reduced to a form resembling that of the conventional semi-classical cranking model when exchange terms and intrinsic spurious collective excitation are ignored.

  6. BDNF has opposite effects on the quantal amplitude of pyramidal neuron and interneuron excitatory synapses.

    PubMed

    Rutherford, L C; Nelson, S B; Turrigiano, G G

    1998-09-01

    Recently, we have identified a novel form of synaptic plasticity that acts to stabilize neocortical firing rates by scaling the quantal amplitude of AMPA-mediated synaptic inputs up or down as a function of neuronal activity. Here, we show that the effects of activity blockade on quantal amplitude are mediated through the neurotrophin brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF). Exogenous BDNF prevented, and a TrkB-IgG fusion protein reproduced, the effects of activity blockade on pyramidal quantal amplitude. BDNF had opposite effects on pyramidal neuron and interneuron quantal amplitudes and modified the ratio of pyramidal neuron to interneuron firing rates. These data demonstrate a novel role for BDNF in the homeostatic regulation of excitatory synaptic strengths and in the maintenance of the balance of cortical excitation and inhibition.

  7. Empty Niches after Extinctions Increase Population Sizes of Modern Corals.

    PubMed

    Prada, Carlos; Hanna, Bishoy; Budd, Ann F; Woodley, Cheryl M; Schmutz, Jeremy; Grimwood, Jane; Iglesias-Prieto, Roberto; Pandolfi, John M; Levitan, Don; Johnson, Kenneth G; Knowlton, Nancy; Kitano, Hiroaki; DeGiorgio, Michael; Medina, Mónica

    2016-12-05

    Large environmental fluctuations often cause mass extinctions, extirpating species and transforming communities [1, 2]. While the effects on community structure are evident in the fossil record, demographic consequences for populations of individual species are harder to evaluate because fossils reveal relative, but not absolute, abundances. However, genomic analyses of living species that have survived a mass extinction event offer the potential for understanding the demographic effects of such environmental fluctuations on extant species. Here, we show how environmental variation since the Pliocene has shaped demographic changes in extant corals of the genus Orbicella, major extant reef builders in the Caribbean that today are endangered. We use genomic approaches to estimate previously unknown current and past population sizes over the last 3 million years. Populations of all three Orbicella declined around 2-1 million years ago, coincident with the extinction of at least 50% of Caribbean coral species. The estimated changes in population size are consistent across the three species despite their ecological differences. Subsequently, two shallow-water specialists expanded their population sizes at least 2-fold, over a time that overlaps with the disappearance of their sister competitor species O. nancyi (the organ-pipe Orbicella). Our study suggests that populations of Orbicella species are capable of rebounding from reductions in population size under suitable conditions and that the effective population size of modern corals provides rich standing genetic variation for corals to adapt to climate change. For conservation genetics, our study suggests the need to evaluate genetic variation under appropriate demographic models.

  8. Quantal analysis reveals a functional correlation between presynaptic and postsynaptic efficacy in excitatory connections from rat neocortex.

    PubMed

    Hardingham, Neil R; Read, Jenny C A; Trevelyan, Andrew J; Nelson, J Charmaine; Jack, J Julian B; Bannister, Neil J

    2010-01-27

    At many central synapses, the presynaptic bouton and postsynaptic density are structurally correlated. However, it is unknown whether this correlation extends to the functional properties of the synapses. To investigate this, we made recordings from synaptically coupled pairs of pyramidal neurons in rat visual cortex. The mean peak amplitude of EPSPs recorded from pairs of L2/3 neurons ranged between 40 microV and 2.9 mV. EPSP rise times were consistent with the majority of the synapses being located on basal dendrites; this was confirmed by full anatomical reconstructions of a subset of connected pairs. Over a third of the connections could be described using a quantal model that assumed simple binomial statistics. Release probability (P(r)) and quantal size (Q), as measured at the somatic recording site, showed considerable heterogeneity between connections. However, across the population of connections, values of P(r) and Q for individual connections were positively correlated with one another. This correlation also held for inputs to layer 5 pyramidal neurons from both layer 2/3 and neighboring layer 5 pyramidal neurons, suggesting that during development of cortical connections presynaptic and postsynaptic strengths are dependently scaled. For 2/3 to 2/3 connections, mean EPSP amplitude was correlated with both Q and P(r) values but uncorrelated with N, the number of functional release sites mediating the connection. The efficacy of a cortical connection is thus set by coordinated presynaptic and postsynaptic strength.

  9. Quantal independence and uniformity of presynaptic release kinetics at the frog neuromuscular junction.

    PubMed

    Barrett, E F; Stevens, C F

    1972-12-01

    1. Amplitude and latency fluctuations of the end-plate potential at the frog neuromuscular junction were studied simultaneously at low temperatures, using intracellular or focal extracellular recording techniques and average quantal contents between 0.5 and 3.2. At the release rates studied, the evoked release of one quantum has in most cases no significant effect on the probability of subsequent quantal release to the same stimulus, confirming the mutual independence of quantal releases in this preparation.3. An equation derived from Poisson's law was applied to a histogram of the latencies of the first quantum released on each of a series of trials, to predict the average quantal content of end-plate responses originating at various times after nerve stimulation. The shape of the predicted time distribution of quantal contents usually agreed closely with that of the experimentally observed time distribution of end-plate response amplitudes. This agreement demonstrates that both the amplitude and the latency fluctuations of the end-plate response result from one presynaptic stochastic process that is uniform in magnitude and time course after each stimulus.4. Analysis of extracellular records from synaptic regions with a history of extensive activity often suggested the existence of depressive interaction among quantal releases, perhaps caused by depletion of the supply of releasable quanta.

  10. Does teenage childbearing increase smoking, drinking and body size?

    PubMed

    Webbink, Dinand; Martin, Nicholas G; Visscher, Peter M

    2008-07-01

    This paper analyses the causal effect of teenage childbearing on smoking, drinking and body size using a sample of Australian twins and their relatives. Fixed effects estimates on samples of siblings, all twin pairs and identical twin pairs show that teenage mothers smoke more during their lives. Teen mothers tend to have a higher probability of being overweight, especially if they are older than 40 years. Their spouses are more likely to smoke and drink more. The quality of the spouse seems to be an important mechanism through which teenage childbearing affects subsequent maternal health.

  11. On being the right size: increased body size is associated with reduced telomere length under natural conditions.

    PubMed

    Ringsby, Thor Harald; Jensen, Henrik; Pärn, Henrik; Kvalnes, Thomas; Boner, Winnie; Gillespie, Robert; Holand, Håkon; Hagen, Ingerid Julie; Rønning, Bernt; Sæther, Bernt-Erik; Monaghan, Pat

    2015-12-07

    Evolution of body size is likely to involve trade-offs between body size, growth rate and longevity. Within species, larger body size is associated with faster growth and ageing, and reduced longevity, but the cellular processes driving these relationships are poorly understood. One mechanism that might play a key role in determining optimal body size is the relationship between body size and telomere dynamics. However, we know little about how telomere length is affected when selection for larger size is imposed in natural populations. We report here on the relationship between structural body size and telomere length in wild house sparrows at the beginning and end of a selection regime for larger parent size that was imposed for 4 years in an isolated population of house sparrows. A negative relationship between fledgling size and telomere length was present at the start of the selection; this was extended when fledgling size increased under the selection regime, demonstrating a persistent covariance between structural size and telomere length. Changes in telomere dynamics, either as a correlated trait or a consequence of larger size, could reduce potential longevity and the consequent trade-offs could thereby play an important role in the evolution of optimal body size.

  12. Classical study of rotational excitation of a rigid rotor - Li/+/ + H2. II - Correspondence with quantal results

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Labudde, R. A.; Bernstein, R. B.

    1973-01-01

    Further classical trajectory calculations of the rotational excitation of H2 in collision with Li(+) have been carried out in order to assess several alternative classical-quantal correspondence relationships. The results are compared with exact quantal cross sections computed for the same model system by Lester and Schaefer (1973).

  13. Bayesian Inference of Synaptic Quantal Parameters from Correlated Vesicle Release

    PubMed Central

    Bird, Alex D.; Wall, Mark J.; Richardson, Magnus J. E.

    2016-01-01

    Synaptic transmission is both history-dependent and stochastic, resulting in varying responses to presentations of the same presynaptic stimulus. This complicates attempts to infer synaptic parameters and has led to the proposal of a number of different strategies for their quantification. Recently Bayesian approaches have been applied to make more efficient use of the data collected in paired intracellular recordings. Methods have been developed that either provide a complete model of the distribution of amplitudes for isolated responses or approximate the amplitude distributions of a train of post-synaptic potentials, with correct short-term synaptic dynamics but neglecting correlations. In both cases the methods provided significantly improved inference of model parameters as compared to existing mean-variance fitting approaches. However, for synapses with high release probability, low vesicle number or relatively low restock rate and for data in which only one or few repeats of the same pattern are available, correlations between serial events can allow for the extraction of significantly more information from experiment: a more complete Bayesian approach would take this into account also. This has not been possible previously because of the technical difficulty in calculating the likelihood of amplitudes seen in correlated post-synaptic potential trains; however, recent theoretical advances have now rendered the likelihood calculation tractable for a broad class of synaptic dynamics models. Here we present a compact mathematical form for the likelihood in terms of a matrix product and demonstrate how marginals of the posterior provide information on covariance of parameter distributions. The associated computer code for Bayesian parameter inference for a variety of models of synaptic dynamics is provided in the Supplementary Material allowing for quantal and dynamical parameters to be readily inferred from experimental data sets. PMID:27932970

  14. Reversible Recruitment of a Homeostatic Reserve Pool of Synaptic Vesicles Underlies Rapid Homeostatic Plasticity of Quantal Content

    PubMed Central

    Pinter, Martin J.; Rich, Mark M.

    2016-01-01

    Homeostatic regulation is essential for the maintenance of synaptic strength within the physiological range. The current study is the first to demonstrate that both induction and reversal of homeostatic upregulation of synaptic vesicle release can occur within seconds of blocking or unblocking acetylcholine receptors at the mouse neuromuscular junction. Our data suggest that the homeostatic upregulation of release is due to Ca2+-dependent increase in the size of the readily releasable pool (RRP). Blocking vesicle refilling prevented upregulation of quantal content (QC), while leaving baseline release relatively unaffected. This suggested that the upregulation of QC was due to mobilization of a distinct pool of vesicles that were rapidly recycled and thus were dependent on continued vesicle refilling. We term this pool the “homeostatic reserve pool.” A detailed analysis of the time course of vesicle release triggered by a presynaptic action potential suggests that the homeostatic reserve pool of vesicles is normally released more slowly than other vesicles, but the rate of their release becomes similar to that of the major pool during homeostatic upregulation of QC. Remarkably, instead of finding a generalized increase in the recruitment of vesicles into RRP, we identified a distinct homeostatic reserve pool of vesicles that appear to only participate in synchronized release following homeostatic upregulation of QC. Once this small pool of vesicles is depleted by the block of vesicle refilling, homeostatic upregulation of QC is no longer observed. This is the first identification of the population of vesicles responsible for the blockade-induced upregulation of release previously described. SIGNIFICANCE STATEMENT The current study is the first to demonstrate that both the induction and reversal of homeostatic upregulation of synaptic vesicle release can occur within seconds. Our data suggest that homeostatic upregulation of release is due to Ca2+-dependent

  15. Increasing portion sizes of fruits and vegetables in an elementary school lunch program can increase fruit and vegetable consumption.

    PubMed

    Miller, Nicole; Reicks, Marla; Redden, Joseph P; Mann, Traci; Mykerezi, Elton; Vickers, Zata

    2015-08-01

    Increasing portion size can increase children's consumption of food. The goal of this study was to determine whether increasing the portion sizes of fruits and vegetables in an elementary school cafeteria environment would increase children's consumption of them. We measured each child's consumption of the fruit and vegetables served in a cafeteria line on a control day (normal cafeteria procedures) and on two intervention days. When we increased the portion size of 3 of the 4 fruits and vegetables by about 50%, children who took those foods increased their consumption of them. Although this was an effective strategy for increasing fruit and vegetable consumption among students who took those foods, many children chose not to take any fruits or vegetables. Further efforts are needed to increase children's selection and consumption of fruits and vegetables in an environment of competing foods of higher palatability.

  16. Increased bioavailability of a transdermal application of a nano-sized emulsion preparation.

    PubMed

    Kotyla, T; Kuo, F; Moolchandani, V; Wilson, T; Nicolosi, R

    2008-01-22

    The aim of this study was to compare the transdermal application of a nano-sized emulsion versus a micron-sized emulsion preparation of delta tocopherol as it relates to particle size and bioavailability. Two separate experiments were performed using seven F1B Syrian Golden hamsters, 1 week apart. Each emulsion preparation consisted of canola oil, polysorbate 80, deionized water and delta tocopherol; the only difference between the two preparations was processing the nano-sized emulsion with the Microfluidizer Processor. Both were formulated into a cream and applied to the shaven dorsal area. The particle size of the micron-sized emulsion preparation was 2788 nm compared to 65 nm for the nano-sized emulsion formulation. Two hours post-application, hamsters that were applied the nano-sized emulsion had a 36-fold significant increase of plasma delta tocopherol, where as hamsters that were applied the micron-sized emulsion only had a 9-fold significant increase, compared to baseline, respectively. At 3h post-application, plasma delta tocopherol had significantly increased 68-fold for hamsters applied the nano-sized emulsion, whereas only an 11-fold significant increase was observed in hamsters applied the micron-sized emulsion, compared to baseline, respectively. Significant differences were also observed between the nano-sized and micron-sized emulsion at 2 and 3h post-application. This study suggests that nano-sized emulsions significantly increase the bioavailability of transdermally applied delta tocopherol.

  17. Receptor-mediated presynaptic facilitation of quantal release of acetylcholine induced by pralidoxime in Aplysia.

    PubMed

    Fossier, P; Baux, G; Poulain, B; Tauc, L

    1990-09-01

    1. Possible interactions of contrathion (pralidoxime sulfomethylate), a reactivator of phosphorylated acetylcholinesterase (AChE), with the regulation of cholinergic transmission were investigated on an identified synapse in the buccal ganglion of Aplysia californica. 2. Transmitter release was evoked either by a presynaptic action potential or, under voltage clamp, by a long depolarization of the presynaptic cell. At concentrations higher than 10(-5) M, bath-applied contrathion decreased the amplitude of miniature postsynaptic currents and increased their decay time. At the same time, the quantal release of ACh was transiently facilitated. The facilitatory effect of contrathion was prevented by tubocurarine but not by atropine. Because in this preparation, these drugs block, respectively, the presynaptic nicotinic-like and muscarinic-like receptors involved in positive and negative feedback of ACh release, we proposed that contrathion activates presynaptic nicotinic-like receptors. 3. Differential desensitization of the presynaptic receptors is proposed to explain the transience of the facilitatory action of contrathion on ACh release. 4. The complexity of the synaptic action of contrathion raises the possibility that its therapeutic effects in AChE poisonings are not limited to AChE reactivation.

  18. Sample Sizes for Confidence Intervals on the Increase in the Squared Multiple Correlation Coefficient.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Algina, James; Moulder, Bradley C.

    2001-01-01

    Studied sample sizes for confidence intervals on the increase in the squared multiple correlation coefficient using simulation. Discusses predictors and actual coverage probability and provides sample-size guidelines for probability coverage to be near the nominal confidence interval. (SLD)

  19. 39 CFR 3010.11 - Limit on size of rate increases.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2013 CFR

    2013-07-01

    ...) § 3010.11 Limit on size of rate increases. (a) Rate increases for each class of market dominant products... 39 Postal Service 1 2013-07-01 2013-07-01 false Limit on size of rate increases. 3010.11 Section... authority is measured separately for each class of mail. (d) In any 12-month period the...

  20. 39 CFR 3010.11 - Limit on size of rate increases.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2012 CFR

    2012-07-01

    ...) § 3010.11 Limit on size of rate increases. (a) Rate increases for each class of market dominant products... 39 Postal Service 1 2012-07-01 2012-07-01 false Limit on size of rate increases. 3010.11 Section... authority is measured separately for each class of mail. (d) In any 12-month period the...

  1. Increasing precipitation event size increases aboveground net primary productivity in a semi-arid grassland.

    PubMed

    Heisler-White, Jana L; Knapp, Alan K; Kelly, Eugene F

    2008-11-01

    Water availability is the primary constraint to aboveground net primary productivity (ANPP) in many terrestrial biomes, and it is an ecosystem driver that will be strongly altered by future climate change. Global circulation models predict a shift in precipitation patterns to growing season rainfall events that are larger in size but fewer in number. This "repackaging" of rainfall into large events with long intervening dry intervals could be particularly important in semi-arid grasslands because it is in marked contrast to the frequent but small events that have historically defined this ecosystem. We investigated the effect of more extreme rainfall patterns on ANPP via the use of rainout shelters and paired this experimental manipulation with an investigation of long-term data for ANPP and precipitation. Experimental plots (n = 15) received the long-term (30-year) mean growing season precipitation quantity; however, this amount was distributed as 12, six, or four events applied manually according to seasonal patterns for May-September. The long-term mean (1940-2005) number of rain events in this shortgrass steppe was 14 events, with a minimum of nine events in years of average precipitation. Thus, our experimental treatments pushed this system beyond its recent historical range of variability. Plots receiving fewer, but larger rain events had the highest rates of ANPP (184 +/- 38 g m(-2)), compared to plots receiving more frequent rainfall (105 +/- 24 g m(-2)). ANPP in all experimental plots was greater than long-term mean ANPP for this system (97 g m(-2)), which may be explained in part by the more even distribution of applied rain events. Soil moisture data indicated that larger events led to greater soil water content and likely permitted moisture penetration to deeper in the soil profile. These results indicate that semi-arid grasslands are capable of responding immediately and substantially to forecast shifts to more extreme precipitation patterns.

  2. Probabilistic secretion of quanta at somatic motor-nerve terminals: the fusion-pore model, quantal detection and autoinhibition.

    PubMed

    Thomson, P C; Lavidis, N A; Robinson, J; Bennett, M R

    1995-08-29

    The probability of detecting first, second, and later quanta secreted at release sites of a motor-nerve terminal during the early release period following a nerve impulse has been addressed. The possibility that early quantal release autoinhibits later quantal release during this period has also been ascertained. In this investigation, a model for the secretion of a quantum at a release site is developed in which, following the influx and diffusion of calcium ions to a release site protein associated with synaptic vesicles, kappa steps of association of the ions with the protein then occur at rate alpha. The release site protein then undergoes a conformational change which may not go on to completion if calcium ions dissociate from the protein at rate gamma. If this process does reach completion then a fusion-pore between the vesicle and the presynaptic membrane is created; this happens at rate delta. Key assumptions of this fusion-pore model are that the quantal secretions from each site are independent of each other, and that there is a large number of vesicles, each with a small probability of secretion, so that the number of secretions is Poisson in nature. These assumptions allow analytical expressions to be obtained for predicting the times at which first, second and later quanta are secreted during the early release period following an impulse. To test the model, experiments were performed in which the times of first, second and later quantal releases were determined at discrete regions along the length of visualized motor-terminal branches in toad (Bufo marinus) muscles. Estimates of model rate constants and of kappa from the times for first quantal secretions failed to give satisfactory predictions of the observed times of later secretions. Therefore, either the model fails, or the procedure used for detecting later quantal events as a consequence of their being masked by earlier quantal events is inadequate. To solve this detection problem, a two

  3. Bayesian Analysis for Linearized Multi-Stage Models in Quantal Bioassay.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Kuo, Lynn; Cohen, Michael P.

    Bayesian methods for estimating dose response curves in quantal bioassay are studied. A linearized multi-stage model is assumed for the shape of the curves. A Gibbs sampling approach with data augmentation is employed to compute the Bayes estimates. In addition, estimation of the "relative additional risk" and the "risk specific…

  4. BDNF increases release probability and the size of a rapidly recycling vesicle pool within rat hippocampal excitatory synapses

    PubMed Central

    Tyler, William J; Zhang, Xiao-lei; Hartman, Kenichi; Winterer, Jochen; Muller, Wolfgang; Stanton, Patric K; Pozzo-Miller, Lucas

    2006-01-01

    Exerting its actions pre-, post- and peri-synaptically, brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) is one of the most potent modulators of hippocampal synaptic function. Here, we examined the effects of BDNF on a rapidly recycling pool (RRP) of vesicles within excitatory synapses. First, we estimated vesicular release in hippocampal cultures by performing FM4-64 imaging in terminals impinging on enhanced green fluorescent protein (eGFP)-labelled dendritic spines – a hallmark of excitatory synapses. Consistent with a modulation of the RRP, BDNF increased the evoked destaining rate of FM4-64 only during the initial phase of field stimulation. Multiphoton microscopy in acute hippocampal slices confirmed these observations by selectively imaging the RRP, which was loaded with FM1-43 by hyperosmotic shock. Slices exposed to BDNF showed an increase in the evoked and spontaneous rates of FM1-43 destaining from terminals in CA1 stratum radiatum, mostly representing excitatory terminals of Schaffer collaterals. Variance-mean analysis of evoked EPSCs in CA1 pyramidal neurons further confirmed that release probability is increased in BDNF-treated slices, without changes in the number of independent release sites or average postsynaptic quantal amplitude. Because BDNF was absent during dye loading, imaging, destaining and whole-cell recordings, these results demonstrate that BDNF induces a long-lasting enhancement in the probability of transmitter release at hippocampal excitatory synapses by modulating the RRP. Since the endogenous BDNF scavenger TrkB-IgG prevented the enhancement of FM1-43 destaining rate caused by induction of long-term potentiation in acute hippocampal slices, the modulation of a rapidly recycling vesicle pool may underlie the role of BDNF in hippocampal long-term synaptic plasticity. PMID:16709633

  5. Increased Cell–Cell Coupling Increases Infarct Size and Does not Decrease Incidence of Ventricular Tachycardia in Mice

    PubMed Central

    Prestia, Kevin A.; Sosunov, Eugene A.; Anyukhovsky, Evgeny P.; Dolmatova, Elena; Kelly, Caitlin W.; Brink, Peter R.; Robinson, Richard B.; Rosen, Michael R.; Duffy, Heather S.

    2011-01-01

    Increasing connexin43 (Cx43) gap junctional conductance as a means to improve cardiac conduction has been proposed as a novel antiarrhythmic modality. Yet, transmission of molecules via gap junctions may be associated with increased infarct size. To determine whether maintaining open gap junction channels impacts on infarct size and induction of ventricular tachycardia (VT) following coronary occlusion, we expressed the pH- and voltage-independent connexin isoform connexin32 (Cx32) in ventricle and confirmed Cx32 expression. Wild-type (WT) mice injected with adenovirus-Cx32 (Cx32inj) were examined following coronary occlusion to determine infarct size and inducibility of VT. There was an increased infarct size in Cx32inj hearts as compared to WT (WT 22.9 ± 4%; Cx32inj 44.3 ± 5%; p < 0.05). Programmed electrical stimulation showed no difference in VT inducibility in WT and Cx32inj mice (VT was reproducibly inducible in 55% of shams and 50% of Cx32inj mice (p > 0.05). Following coronary occlusion, improving cell–cell communication increased infarct size, and conferred no antiarrhythmic benefit. PMID:21423411

  6. Culling experiments demonstrate size-class specific biomass increases with mortality.

    PubMed

    Schröder, A; Persson, L; de Roos, A M

    2009-02-24

    Size-selective mortality inevitably leads to a decrease in population density and exerts a direct negative effect on targeted size classes. But density and population size structure are also shaped by food-dependent processes, such as individual growth, maturation, and reproduction. Mortality relaxes competition and thereby alters the dynamic interplay among these processes. As shown by the recently developed size-structured theory, which can account for food-dependent individual performance, this altered interplay can lead to overcompensatory responses in size class-specific biomass, with increasing mortality. We experimentally tested this theory by subjecting laboratory fish populations to a range of size-selective mortality rates. Overall, the results were in agreement with theoretical predictions. Biomass of the juvenile size class increased above control levels at intermediate adult mortality rates and thereafter declined at high mortality rates. Juvenile biomass also increased when juveniles themselves were subjected to intermediate mortality rates. Biomass in other size classes decreased with mortality. Such biomass overcompensation can have wide-ranging implications for communities and food webs, including a high sensitivity of top predators to irreversible catastrophic collapses, the establishment of alternative stable community states, and the promotion of coexistence and biodiversity.

  7. Hypercaloric diets with increased meal frequency, but not meal size, increase intrahepatic triglycerides: A randomized controlled trial

    PubMed Central

    Koopman, Karin E; Caan, Matthan WA; Nederveen, Aart J; Pels, Anouk; Ackermans, Mariette T; Fliers, Eric; la Fleur, Susanne E; Serlie, Mireille J

    2014-01-01

    American children consume up to 27% of calories from high-fat and high-sugar snacks. Both sugar and fat consumption have been implicated as a cause of hepatic steatosis and obesity but the effect of meal pattern is largely understudied. We hypothesized that a high meal frequency, compared to consuming large meals, is detrimental in the accumulation of intrahepatic and abdominal fat. To test this hypothesis, we randomized 36 lean, healthy men to a 40% hypercaloric diet for 6 weeks or a eucaloric control diet and measured intrahepatic triglyceride content (IHTG) using proton magnetic resonance spectroscopy (1H-MRS), abdominal fat using magnetic resonance imaging (MRI), and insulin sensitivity using a hyperinsulinemic euglycemic clamp with a glucose isotope tracer before and after the diet intervention. The caloric surplus consisted of fat and sugar (high-fat-high-sugar; HFHS) or sugar only (high-sugar; HS) and was consumed together with, or between, the three main meals, thereby increasing meal size or meal frequency. All hypercaloric diets similarly increased body mass index (BMI). Increasing meal frequency significantly increased IHTG (HFHS mean relative increase of 45%; P = 0.016 and HS mean relative increase of 110%; P = 0.047), whereas increasing meal size did not (2-way analysis of variance [ANOVA] size versus frequency P = 0.03). Abdominal fat increased in the HFHS-frequency group (+63.3 ± 42.8 mL; P = 0.004) and tended to increase in the HS-frequency group (+46.5 ± 50.7 mL; P = 0.08). Hepatic insulin sensitivity tended to decrease in the HFHS-frequency group while peripheral insulin sensitivity was not affected. Conclusion: A hypercaloric diet with high meal frequency increased IHTG and abdominal fat independent of caloric content and body weight gain, whereas increasing meal size did not. This study suggests that snacking, a common feature in the Western diet, independently contributes to hepatic steatosis and obesity. (Trial

  8. Increased InAs quantum dot size and density using bismuth as a surfactant

    SciTech Connect

    Dasika, Vaishno D.; Krivoy, E. M.; Nair, H. P.; Maddox, S. J.; Park, K. W.; Yu, E. T.; Bank, S. R.; Jung, D.; Lee, M. L.

    2014-12-22

    We have investigated the growth of self-assembled InAs quantum dots using bismuth as a surfactant to control the dot size and density. We find that the bismuth surfactant increases the quantum dot density, size, and uniformity, enabling the extension of the emission wavelength with increasing InAs deposition without a concomitant reduction in dot density. We show that these effects are due to bismuth acting as a reactive surfactant to kinetically suppress the surface adatom mobility. This mechanism for controlling quantum dot density and size has the potential to extend the operating wavelength and enhance the performance of various optoelectronic devices.

  9. Thermal and quantal isospin and spin fluctuations in heavy ion reactions

    SciTech Connect

    Moretto, L.G.

    1980-01-01

    The isobaric charge distributions are discussed in terms of quantal and classical isospin fluctuations. The roles of mass asymmetry and of the higher giant isovector modes are treated within the framework of a cylinder model that is worked out exactly. Spin fluctuations are considered first in terms of quantal fluctuations in a cylinder model and second in terms of thermal fluctuations in a two-sphere model. The results are applied to the calculation of in- and out-of-plane angular distributions for sequential fission, alpha and gamma decay. Analytical expressions are obtained for the angular distributions. The theoretical predictions are compared with experimental results for sequential fission, alpha, and gamma angular distributions. 23 figures.

  10. Stability of mixed-strategy-based iterative logit quantal response dynamics in game theory.

    PubMed

    Zhuang, Qian; Di, Zengru; Wu, Jinshan

    2014-01-01

    Using the Logit quantal response form as the response function in each step, the original definition of static quantal response equilibrium (QRE) is extended into an iterative evolution process. QREs remain as the fixed points of the dynamic process. However, depending on whether such fixed points are the long-term solutions of the dynamic process, they can be classified into stable (SQREs) and unstable (USQREs) equilibriums. This extension resembles the extension from static Nash equilibriums (NEs) to evolutionary stable solutions in the framework of evolutionary game theory. The relation between SQREs and other solution concepts of games, including NEs and QREs, is discussed. Using experimental data from other published papers, we perform a preliminary comparison between SQREs, NEs, QREs and the observed behavioral outcomes of those experiments. For certain games, we determine that SQREs have better predictive power than QREs and NEs.

  11. The quantal theory of how the immune system discriminates between "self and non-self"

    PubMed Central

    Smith, Kendall A

    2004-01-01

    In the past 50 years, immunologists have accumulated an amazing amount of information as to how the immune system functions. However, one of the most fundamental aspects of immunity, how the immune system discriminates between self vs. non-self, still remains an enigma. Any attempt to explain this most intriguing and fundamental characteristic must account for this decision at the level of the whole immune system, but as well, at the level of the individual cells making up the immune system. Moreover, it must provide for a molecular explanation as to how and why the cells behave as they do. The "Quantal Theory", proposed herein, is based upon the "Clonal Selection Theory", first proposed by Sir McFarland Burnet in 1955, in which he explained the remarkable specificity as well as diversity of recognition of everything foreign in the environment. The "Quantal Theory" is built upon Burnet's premise that after antigen selection of cell clones, a proliferative expansion of the selected cells ensues. Furthermore, it is derived from experiments which indicate that the proliferation of antigen-selected cell clones is determined by a quantal, "all-or-none", decision promulgated by a critical number of cellular receptors triggered by the T Cell Growth Factor (TCGF), interleukin 2 (IL2). An extraordinary number of experiments reported especially in the past 20 years, and detailed herein, indicate that the T cell Antigen Receptor (TCR) behaves similarly, and also that there are several critical numbers of triggered TCRs that determine different fates of the T cells. Moreover, the fates of the cells appear ultimately to be determined by the TCR triggering of the IL2 and IL2 receptor (IL2R) genes, which are also expressed in a very quantal fashion. The "Quantal Theory" states that the fundamental decisions of the T cell immune system are dependent upon the cells receiving a critical number of triggered TCRs and IL2Rs and that the cells respond in an all-or-none fashion. The

  12. The quantal nature of transmission and spontaneous potentials at the Torpedo electromotor junction.

    PubMed

    Erdélyi, L

    1985-01-01

    Miniature and stimulus evoked electroplaque potentials (mEpPs and EpPs) were recorded in Torpedo electrocytes intracellularly and extracellularly. The quantal release parameters of EpPs and the time course of quantal EpCs were estimated in normal and low Ca2+-high Mg2+ solutions. Amplitude-frequency distribution of mEpPs showed Gaussian or uneven character with an average mean value of 0.3 +/- 0.08 mV (S.D.). The mean coefficient of variation of mEpPs was 26.8 +/- 7.2% (n = 6). Tetrodotoxin reversibly blocked the stimulus evoked EpP but hardly influenced the amplitude-frequency histogram of spontaneous EpPs in 10(-8)-10(-6) M concentration. The quantum content of stimulus evoked EpPs varied between 100-400 in normal solution which decreased in low Ca2+-high Mg2+ solution and the quantal release conformed to binomial statistics and allowed determination of the parameters p and n. Frequency of the spontaneous discharges varied highly from electrocyte to electrocyte but an analysis of the time intervals showed randomness for the events. The decay phase of quantal current composed of non-exponential and exponential sections which was characteristic with 0.75 +/- 0.16 msec (mean, S.D., at 20 degrees C) time constant of exponential decay. Although, two types of mEpCs could be differentiated having significantly slower and faster time courses. Neostigmine prolonged the time constant of decay of mEpCs in dose-dependent manner with a factor of 2 in 10(-6) M and of 4 in 10(-5) M concentrations (at about 20 degrees C).

  13. Quantal potential fields around individual active zones of amphibian motor-nerve terminals.

    PubMed Central

    Bennett, M R; Farnell, L; Gibson, W G; Macleod, G T; Dickens, P

    2000-01-01

    The release of a quantum from a nerve terminal is accompanied by the flow of extracellular current, which creates a field around the site of transmitter action. We provide a solution for the extent of this field for the case of a quantum released from a site on an amphibian motor-nerve terminal branch onto the receptor patch of a muscle fiber and compare this with measurements of the field using three extracellular electrodes. Numerical solution of the equations for the quantal potential field in cylindrical coordinates show that the density of the field at the peak of the quantal current gives rise to a peak extracellular potential, which declines approximately as the inverse of the distance from the source at distances greater than about 4 microm from the source along the length of the fiber. The peak extracellular potential declines to 20% of its initial value in a distance of about 6 microm, both along the length of the fiber and in the circumferential direction around the fiber. Simultaneous recordings of quantal potential fields, made with three electrodes placed in a line at right angles to an FM1-43 visualized branch, gave determinations of the field strengths in accord with the numerical solutions. In addition, the three electrodes were placed so as to straddle the visualized release sites of a branch. The positions of these sites were correctly predicted on the basis of the theory and independently ascertained by FM1-43 staining of the sites. It is concluded that quantal potential fields at the neuromuscular junction that can be measured with available recording techniques are restricted to regions within about 10 microm of the release site. PMID:10692301

  14. Increasing seed size and quality by manipulating BIG SEEDS1 in legume species

    PubMed Central

    Ge, Liangfa; Yu, Jianbin; Wang, Hongliang; Luth, Diane; Bai, Guihua; Wang, Kan

    2016-01-01

    Plant organs, such as seeds, are primary sources of food for both humans and animals. Seed size is one of the major agronomic traits that have been selected in crop plants during their domestication. Legume seeds are a major source of dietary proteins and oils. Here, we report a conserved role for the BIG SEEDS1 (BS1) gene in the control of seed size and weight in the model legume Medicago truncatula and the grain legume soybean (Glycine max). BS1 encodes a plant-specific transcription regulator and plays a key role in the control of the size of plant organs, including seeds, seed pods, and leaves, through a regulatory module that targets primary cell proliferation. Importantly, down-regulation of BS1 orthologs in soybean by an artificial microRNA significantly increased soybean seed size, weight, and amino acid content. Our results provide a strategy for the increase in yield and seed quality in legumes. PMID:27791139

  15. 20-Hydroxyecdysone increases fiber size in a muscle-specific fashion in rat.

    PubMed

    Tóth, Noémi; Szabó, András; Kacsala, Péter; Héger, Júlia; Zádor, Ernö

    2008-09-01

    20-Hydroxyecdysone (20E) is an ecdysteroid hormone that regulates moulting in insects. Interestingly, 20E is also found most abundantly in plant species and has anabolic effects in vertebrates, i.e. increasing muscle size without androgen influence. The effect of 20E on slow and fast fiber types of skeletal muscle has not been reported yet. Here we present that 20E affects the size (cross-sectional area, CSA) of the different fiber types in a muscle-specific manner. The effect on fiber size was modified by the distance from the site of the treatment and the presence of a regenerating soleus muscle in the animal. Besides the fiber size, 20E also increased the myonuclear number in the fibers of normal and regenerating muscles, suggesting the activation of satellite cells. According to our results 20E may provide an alternative for substitution of anabolic-androgenic steroids in therapeutic treatments against muscle atrophy.

  16. Feeding damage to plants increases with plant size across 21 Brassicaceae species.

    PubMed

    Schlinkert, Hella; Westphal, Catrin; Clough, Yann; Ludwig, Martin; Kabouw, Patrick; Tscharntke, Teja

    2015-10-01

    Plant size is a major predictor of ecological functioning. We tested the hypothesis that feeding damage to plants increases with plant size, as the conspicuousness of large plants makes resource finding and colonisation easier. Further, large plants can be attractive to herbivores, as they offer greater amounts and ranges of resources and niches, but direct evidence from experiments testing size effects on feeding damage and consequently on plant fitness is so far missing. We established a common garden experiment with a plant size gradient (10-130 cm height) using 21 annual Brassicaceae species, and quantified plant size, biomass and number of all aboveground components (flowers, fruits, leaves, stems) and their proportional feeding damage. Plant reproductive fitness was measured using seed number, 1000 seed weight and total seed weight. Feeding damage to the different plant components increased with plant size or component biomass, with mean damage levels being approximately 30 % for flowers, 5 % for fruits and 1 % for leaves and stems. Feeding damage affected plant reproductive fitness depending on feeding damage type, with flower damage having the strongest effect, shown by greatly reduced seed number, 1000 seed weight and total seed weight. Finally, we found an overall negative effect of plant size on 1000 seed weight, but not on seed number and total seed weight. In conclusion, being conspicuous and attractive to herbivores causes greater flower damage leading to higher fitness costs for large plants, which might be partly counterbalanced by benefits such as enhanced competitive/compensatory abilities or more mutualistic pollinator visits.

  17. Bound to Lose: Physical Incapacitation Increases the Conceptualized Size of an Antagonist in Men

    PubMed Central

    Fessler, Daniel M. T.; Holbrook, Colin

    2013-01-01

    Because decision-making in situations of potential conflict hinges on assessing many features of the self and the foe, this process can be facilitated by summarizing diverse attributes in a single heuristic representation. Physical size and strength are evolutionarily ancient determinants of victory in conflict, and their relevance is reinforced during development. Accordingly, size and muscularity constitute ready dimensions for a summary representation of relative formidability, a perspective paralleled by the notion that social power is represented using envisioned relative size. Physical incapacitation constitutes a significant tactical disadvantage, hence temporary incapacitation should increase the envisioned size and strength of an antagonist. In Study 1, being bound to a chair increased men’s estimates of the size of an angry man and decreased estimates of their own height. Study 2 conceptually replicated these effects: among men for whom standing on a balance board was challenging, the attendant experience of postural instability increased estimates of an angry man’s size and muscularity, with similar patterns occurring at a reduced level among all but those whose equilibrium was apparently unaffected by this task. PMID:23951126

  18. Numerical Model to Characterize the Size Increase of Combination Drug and Hygroscopic Excipient Nanoparticle Aerosols.

    PubMed

    Longest, P Worth; Hindle, Michael

    2011-01-01

    Enhanced excipient growth is a newly proposed respiratory delivery strategy in which submicrometer or nanometer particles composed of a drug and hygroscopic excipient are delivered to the airways in order to minimize extrathoracic depositional losses and maximize lung retention. The objective of this study was to develop a validated mathematical model of aerosol size increase for hygroscopic excipients and combination excipient-drug particles and to apply this model to characterize growth under typical respiratory conditions. Compared with in vitro experiments, the droplet growth model accurately predicted the size increase of single component and combination drug and excipient particles. For typical respiratory drug delivery conditions, the model showed that droplet size increase could be effectively correlated with the product of a newly defined hygroscopic parameter and initial volume fractions of the drug and excipient in the particle. A series of growth correlations was then developed that successively included the effects of initial drug and excipient mass loadings, initial aerosol size, and aerosol number concentration. Considering EEG delivery, large diameter growth ratios (2.1-4.6) were observed for a range of hygroscopic excipients combined with both hygroscopic and non-hygroscopic drugs. These diameter growth ratios were achieved at excipient mass loadings of 50% and below and at realistic aerosol number concentrations. The developed correlations were then used for specifying the appropriate initial mass loadings of engineered insulin nanoparticles in order to achieve a predetermined size increase while maximizing drug payload and minimizing the amount of hygroscopic excipient.

  19. Increases in plasma pool size of lipoprotein components in copper-deficient hamsters

    SciTech Connect

    Al-Othman, A.A.; Rosenstein, F.; Lei, K.Y. )

    1991-03-15

    Twenty-four male Golden Syrian hamsters, were randomly assigned to 2 dietary copper (Cu) treatments; deficient and adequate. Reductions in weight gain, hematocrit and liver Cu as well as increases in heart weight and plasma volume were observed in CD hamsters after 7 weeks of treatment. Plasma very low (VLDL), low (LDL) and high (HDL) density lipoproteins were isolated by ultracentrifugation and Sepharose column chromatography. The percentage of total plasma cholesterol carried by LDL was increased from 20 to 24% but was reduced from 71 to 68% for HDL as a result of Cu deficiency. In LDL the % composition of triglycerides (TG) and phospholipids (PL) was increased by 25% but that of cholesterol was reduced by 13%. The % composition of protein was reduced 24% but that of TG was increased 18% in VLDL by Cu deficiency. Since plasma volume was increased 50% in CD hamsters, the data were expressed as the amount present in the plasma pool corrected for body weight. With the exceptions of smaller increased in VLDL protein and PL as well as the more than threefold increases in LDL TG and PL plasma pool size, the pool size for the rest of the lipoprotein components were increased about twofold in CD hamsters. The lipoprotein data further indicate that Cu deficiency increased the particle number of VLDL, LDL and HDL but enlarged the size of only VLDL and LDL.

  20. Calmodulin increases transmitter release by mobilizing quanta at the frog motor nerve terminal.

    PubMed

    Brailoiu, Eugen; Miyamoto, Michael D; Dun, Nae J

    2002-11-01

    The role of calmodulin (CaM) in transmitter release was investigated using liposomes to deliver CaM and monoclonal antibodies against CaM (antiCaM) directly into the frog motor nerve terminal. Miniature endplate potentials (MEPPs) were recorded in a high K+ solution, and effects on transmitter release were monitored using estimates of the quantal release parameters m (number of quanta released), n (number of functional transmitter release sites), p (mean probability of release), and var(s) p (spatial variance in p). Administration of CaM, but not heat-inactivated CaM, encapsulated in liposomes (1000 units ml(-1)) produced an increase in m (25%) that was due to an increase in n. MEPP amplitude was not altered by CaM. Administration of antiCaM, but not heat-inactivated antiCaM, in liposomes (50 microl ml(-1)) produced a progressive decrease in m (40%) that was associated with decreases in n and p. MEPP amplitude was decreased (15%) after a 25 min lag time, suggesting a separation in time between the decreases in quantal release and quantal size. Bath application of the membrane-permeable CaM antagonist W7 (28 microM) produced a gradual decrease in m (25%) that was associated with a decrease in n. W7 also produced a decrease in MEPP amplitude that paralleled the decrease in m. The decreases in MEPP size and m produced by W7 were both reversed by addition of CaM. Our results suggest that CaM increases transmitter release by mobilizing synaptic vesicles at the frog motor nerve terminal.

  1. Altered properties of quantal neurotransmitter release at endplates of mice lacking P/Q-type Ca2+ channels

    PubMed Central

    Urbano, Francisco J.; Piedras-Rentería, Erika S.; Jun, Kisun; Shin, Hee-Sup; Uchitel, Osvaldo D.; Tsien, Richard W.

    2003-01-01

    Transmission at the mouse neuromuscular junction normally relies on P/Q-type channels, but became jointly dependent on both N- and R-type Ca2+ channels when the P/Q-type channel α1A subunit was deleted. R-type channels lay close to Ca2+ sensors for exocytosis and IK(Ca) channel activation, like the P/Q-type channels they replaced. In contrast, N-type channels were less well localized, but abundant enough to influence secretion strongly, particularly when action potentials were prolonged. Our data suggested that active zone structures may select among multiple Ca2+ channels in the hierarchy P/Q>R>N. The α1A−/− neuromuscular junction displayed several other differences from wild-type: lowered quantal content but greater ability to withstand reductions in the Ca2+/Mg2+ ratio, and little or no paired-pulse facilitation, the latter findings possibly reflecting compensatory mechanisms at individual release sites. Changes in presynaptic function were also associated with a significant reduction in the size of postsynaptic acetylcholine receptor clusters. PMID:12624181

  2. Splenic release of platelets contributes to increased circulating platelet size and inflammation after myocardial infarction.

    PubMed

    Gao, Xiao-Ming; Moore, Xiao-Lei; Liu, Yang; Wang, Xin-Yu; Han, Li-Ping; Su, Yidan; Tsai, Alan; Xu, Qi; Zhang, Ming; Lambert, Gavin W; Kiriazis, Helen; Gao, Wei; Dart, Anthony M; Du, Xiao-Jun

    2016-07-01

    Acute myocardial infarction (AMI) is characterized by a rapid increase in circulating platelet size but the mechanism for this is unclear. Large platelets are hyperactive and associated with adverse clinical outcomes. We determined mean platelet volume (MPV) and platelet-monocyte conjugation (PMC) using blood samples from patients, and blood and the spleen from mice with AMI. We further measured changes in platelet size, PMC, cardiac and splenic contents of platelets and leucocyte infiltration into the mouse heart. In AMI patients, circulating MPV and PMC increased at 1-3 h post-MI and MPV returned to reference levels within 24 h after admission. In mice with MI, increases in platelet size and PMC became evident within 12 h and were sustained up to 72 h. Splenic platelets are bigger than circulating platelets in normal or infarct mice. At 24 h post-MI, splenic platelet storage was halved whereas cardiac platelets increased by 4-fold. Splenectomy attenuated all changes observed in the blood, reduced leucocyte and platelet accumulation in the infarct myocardium, limited infarct size and alleviated cardiac dilatation and dysfunction. AMI-induced elevated circulating levels of adenosine diphosphate and catecholamines in both human and the mouse, which may trigger splenic platelet release. Pharmacological inhibition of angiotensin-converting enzyme, β1-adrenergic receptor or platelet P2Y12 receptor reduced platelet abundance in the murine infarct myocardium albeit having diverse effects on platelet size and PMC. In conclusion, AMI evokes release of splenic platelets, which contributes to the increase in platelet size and PMC and facilitates myocardial accumulation of platelets and leucocytes, thereby promoting post-infarct inflammation.

  3. Multi-trait interactions, not phylogeny, fine-tune leaf size reduction with increasing altitude

    PubMed Central

    Milla, Rubén; Reich, Peter B.

    2011-01-01

    Background and Aims Despite long-held interest, knowledge on why leaf size varies widely among species is still incomplete. This study was conducted to assess whether abiotic factors, phylogenetic histories and multi-trait interactions act together to shape leaf size. Methods Fifty-seven pairs of altitudinal vicariant species were selected in northern Spain, and leaf area and a number of functionally related leaf, shoot and whole plant traits were measured for each pair. Structural equation modelling helped unravel trait interactions affecting leaf size, and Mantel tests weighed the relative relevance of phylogeny, environment and trait interactions to explain leaf size reduction with altitude. Key Results Leaves of highland vicariants were generally smaller than those of lowlands. However, the extent of leaf size reduction with increasing altitude was widely variable among genera: from approx. 700 cm2 reduction (96 % in Polystichum) to approx. 30 cm2 increase (37 % in Sorbus). This was partially explained by shifts in leaf, shoot and whole plant traits (35–64 % of explained variance, depending on models), with size/number trade-offs more influential than shifts in leaf form and leaf economics. Shifts in traits were more important than phylogenetic distances or site-specific environmental variation in explaining the degree of leaf size reduction with altitude. Conclusions Ecological filters, constraints due to phylogenetic history (albeit modest in the study system), and phenotypic integration contribute jointly to shape single-trait evolution. Here, it was found that phenotypic change was far more important than shared ancestry to explaine leaf size differences of closely related species segregated along altitudes. PMID:21199835

  4. Loss of INCREASED SIZE EXCLUSION LIMIT (ISE)1 or ISE2 increases the formation of secondary plasmodesmata.

    PubMed

    Burch-Smith, Tessa M; Zambryski, Patricia C

    2010-06-08

    Plasmodesmata (PD) transport developmentally important nucleic acids and proteins between plant cells. Primary PD form during cell division and are simple, linear channels. Secondary PD form in existing cell walls after cell division and are simple, twinned, or branched. PD function undergoes a marked reduction at the mid-torpedo stage of Arabidopsis embryogenesis. Two mutants, increased size exclusion limit (ise)1 and ise2, fail to undergo this transition, and their null mutations are embryonically lethal. We investigated the ultrastructure of PD in early-, mid-, and late-torpedo-stage embryos and in young leaves. Wild-type (WT) embryos contain twinned and branched (T/B) PD at all stages, but ise1 and ise2 embryos contain significantly higher proportions of T/B PD than WT embryos. WT T/B PD formation occurs in a stage- and tissue-specific pattern that is reversed in ise1 embryos. Silencing ISE1 in Nicotiana benthamiana leaves increases the frequency of secondary PD in existing cell walls. Silencing ISE2 increases the proportion of T/B secondary PD formed. Silenced tissues exhibit increased PD-mediated movement of green fluorescent protein tracers. Thus, silencing of ISE1 and ISE2 phenocopies ise1 and ise2 mutant embryos: when wild-type ISE1 and ISE2 functions are lost, de novo production of PD occurs, leading to increased intercellular transport.

  5. Potential problems with increasing serving sizes on the Nutrition Facts label.

    PubMed

    Dallas, Steven K; Liu, Peggy J; Ubel, Peter A

    2015-12-01

    The United States Food and Drug Administration recently announced that the serving sizes on the Nutrition Facts labels for many products will be increased, but the effect of these increases remains unclear. The present research examined consumers' interpretation of the meaning of serving size information (study 1) and tested whether exposing consumers to the increased serving sizes of the proposed Nutrition Facts label leads consumers to serve and purchase more food for themselves and others (studies 2-4). Study 1 (N = 101; 44.7% female) tested what consumers believe the serving sizes on Nutrition Facts labels refer to, and the majority of participants (over 78%) incorrectly believed that the serving sizes refer to how much food can or should be consumed in one sitting as part of a healthy diet. Study 2 (N = 51; 41.2% female) tested how exposure to the current versus proposed Nutrition Facts label influences the amount of food that consumers serve themselves, and studies 3 (N = 60; 46.7% female) and 4 (N = 61; 48.2% female) assessed how exposure to the current versus proposed label influences the amount of food that people serve and purchase for others. In studies 2-4, the proposed label (vs. the current label) led consumers to serve themselves 41% more cookies (study 2); serve 27% more cheese crackers to another person (study 3); and buy 43% more lasagnas for others and divide a lasagna into 22% larger slices (study 4). The results suggest that the proposed Nutrition Facts label's increased serving sizes may lead people who use this information as a reference to serve more food to themselves and others.

  6. The scaling of leaf area and mass: the cost of light interception increases with leaf size

    PubMed Central

    Milla, Rubén; Reich, Peter B

    2007-01-01

    For leaves, the light-capturing surface area per unit dry mass investment (specific leaf area, SLA) is a key trait from physiological, ecological and biophysical perspectives. To address whether SLA declines with leaf size, as hypothesized due to increasing costs of support in larger leaves, we compiled data on intraspecific variation in leaf dry mass (LM) and leaf surface area (LA) for 6334 leaves of 157 species. We used the power function LM=α LAβ to test whether, within each species, large leaves deploy less surface area per unit dry mass than small leaves. Comparing scaling exponents (β) showed that more species had a statistically significant decrease in SLA as leaf size increased (61) than the opposite (7) and the average β was significantly greater than 1 (βmean=1.10, 95% CI 1.08–1.13). However, scaling exponents varied markedly from the few species that decreased to the many that increased SLA disproportionately fast as leaf size increased. This variation was unrelated to growth form, ecosystem of origin or climate. The average within-species tendency found here (allometric decrease of SLA with leaf size, averaging 13%) is in accord with concurrent findings on global-scale trends among species, although the substantial scatter around the central tendency suggests that the leaf size dependency does not obligately shape SLA. Nonetheless, the generally greater mass per unit leaf area of larger than smaller leaves directly translates into a greater cost to build and maintain a unit of leaf area, which, all else being equal, should constrain the maximum leaf size displayed. PMID:17591590

  7. Magnetron sputtered diamond-like carbon microelectrodes for on-chip measurement of quantal catecholamine release from cells.

    PubMed

    Gao, Yuanfang; Chen, Xiaohui; Gupta, Sanju; Gillis, Kevin D; Gangopadhyay, Shubhra

    2008-10-01

    Carbon electrodes are widely used in electrochemistry due to their low cost, wide potential window, and low and stable background noise. Carbon-fiber electrodes (CFE) are commonly used to electrochemically measure "quantal" catecholamine release via exocytosis from individual cells, but it is difficult to integrate CFEs into lab-on-a-chip devices. Here we report the development of nitrogen doped diamond-like carbon (DLC:N) microelectrodes on a chip to monitor quantal release of catecholamines from cells. Advantages of DLC:N microelectrodes are that they are batch producible at low cost, and are harder and more durable than graphite films. The DLC:N microelectrodes were prepared by a magnetron sputtering process with nitrogen doping. The 30 microm by 40 microm DLC:N microelectrodes were patterned onto microscope glass slides by photolithography and lift-off technology. The properties of the DLC:N microelectrodes were characterized by AFM, Raman spectroscopy and cyclic voltammetry. Quantal catecholamine release was recorded amperometrically from bovine adrenal chromaffin cells on the DLC:N microelectrodes. Amperometric spikes due to quantal release of catecholamines were similar in amplitude and area as those recorded using CFEs and the background current and noise levels of microchip DLC:N electrodes were also comparable to CFEs. Therefore, DLC:N microelectrodes are suitable for microchip-based high-throughput measurement of quantal exocytosis with applications in basic research, drug discovery and cell-based biosensors.

  8. Increased fat mass is associated with increased bone size but reduced volumetric density in pre pubertal children.

    PubMed

    Cole, Z A; Harvey, N C; Kim, M; Ntani, G; Robinson, S M; Inskip, H M; Godfrey, K M; Cooper, C; Dennison, E M

    2012-02-01

    Recent studies have shown that obesity is associated with an increased risk of fracture in both adults and children. It has been suggested that, despite greater bone size, obese individuals may have reduced true volumetric density; however this is difficult to assess using two dimensional techniques such as DXA. We evaluated the relationship between fat mass, and bone size and density, in a population cohort of children in whom DXA and pQCT measurements had been acquired. We recruited 530 children at 6 years old from the Southampton Women's Survey. The children underwent measurement of bone mass at the whole body, lumbar spine and hip, together with body composition, by DXA (Hologic Discovery, Hologic Inc., Bedford, MA, USA). In addition 132 of these children underwent pQCT measurements at the tibia (Stratec XCT2000, Stratec Biomedical Systems, Birkenfeld, Germany). Significant positive associations were observed between total fat mass and both bone area (BA) and bone mineral content (BMC) at the whole body minus head, lumbar spine and hip sites (all p<0.0001). When true volumetric density was assessed using pQCT data from the tibia, fat mass (adjusted for lean mass) was negatively associated with both trabecular and cortical density (β=-14.6 mg/mm(3) per sd, p=0.003; β=-7.7 mg/mm(3) per sd, p=0.02 respectively). These results suggest that fat mass is negatively associated with volumetric bone density at 6 years old, independent of lean mass, despite positive associations with bone size.

  9. Floral herbivory increases with inflorescence size and local plant density in Digitalis purpurea

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sletvold, Nina; Grindeland, John M.

    2008-07-01

    Insect herbivores search for their host plants in heterogeneous environments, and the efficiency of host location may be influenced by plant architecture and abundance. In this study, we ask how plant and habitat characteristics traditionally thought to attract pollinators are related to attack rates by floral herbivores. Patterns of floral herbivory by the moth larva Eupithecia pulchellata were studied in relation to inflorescence size and local plant density in two years in a natural population of the facultative biennial Digitalis purpurea. Overall levels of herbivory were low, 84% of the infested plants lost less than 10% of their flowers. Only 9% of the plants lost more than 20% of their flowers. Probability of herbivory at the plant level increased strongly with inflorescence height, and it was considerably higher in dense patches compared to sparse ones. There was no effect of local plant density on the functional relationship between inflorescence size and probability of herbivory. Both number and proportion of damaged flowers per plant increased with inflorescence height. The results suggest that E. pulchellata is attracted to dense patches and large individuals of D. purpurea, and that negative effects of herbivory increase with plant size. This implies diminishing returns for investment in more flowers in D. purpurea, and indicates that herbivory may select for smaller flowering size and flower number in this monocarpic species.

  10. Marine mixotrophy increases trophic transfer efficiency, mean organism size, and vertical carbon flux.

    PubMed

    Ward, Ben A; Follows, Michael J

    2016-03-15

    Mixotrophic plankton, which combine the uptake of inorganic resources and the ingestion of living prey, are ubiquitous in marine ecosystems, but their integrated biogeochemical impacts remain unclear. We address this issue by removing the strict distinction between phytoplankton and zooplankton from a global model of the marine plankton food web. This simplification allows the emergence of a realistic trophic network with increased fidelity to empirical estimates of plankton community structure and elemental stoichiometry, relative to a system in which autotrophy and heterotrophy are mutually exclusive. Mixotrophy enhances the transfer of biomass to larger sizes classes further up the food chain, leading to an approximately threefold increase in global mean organism size and an ∼35% increase in sinking carbon flux.

  11. Marine mixotrophy increases trophic transfer efficiency, mean organism size, and vertical carbon flux

    PubMed Central

    Ward, Ben A.; Follows, Michael J.

    2016-01-01

    Mixotrophic plankton, which combine the uptake of inorganic resources and the ingestion of living prey, are ubiquitous in marine ecosystems, but their integrated biogeochemical impacts remain unclear. We address this issue by removing the strict distinction between phytoplankton and zooplankton from a global model of the marine plankton food web. This simplification allows the emergence of a realistic trophic network with increased fidelity to empirical estimates of plankton community structure and elemental stoichiometry, relative to a system in which autotrophy and heterotrophy are mutually exclusive. Mixotrophy enhances the transfer of biomass to larger sizes classes further up the food chain, leading to an approximately threefold increase in global mean organism size and an ∼35% increase in sinking carbon flux. PMID:26831076

  12. The largest Last Supper: depictions of food portions and plate size increased over the millennium.

    PubMed

    Wansink, B; Wansink, C S

    2010-05-01

    Portion sizes of foods have been noticably increasing in recent years, but when did this trend begin? If art imitates life and if food portions have been generally increasing with time, we might expect this trend to be reflected in paintings that depict food. Perhaps the most commonly painted meal has been that of Jesus Christ's Last Supper, chronicled in the New Testament of the Bible. A CAD-CAM analysis of the relative food-to-head ratio in 52 representative paintings of the Last Supper showed that the relative sizes of the main dish (entree) (r=0.52, P=0.002), bread (r=0.30, P=0.04), and plates (r=0.46, P=0.02) have linearly increased over the past millennium.

  13. Underestimating a serving size may lead to increased food consumption when using Canada's Food Guide.

    PubMed

    Abramovitch, Sharona L; Reddigan, Jacinta I; Hamadeh, Mazen J; Jamnik, Veronica K; Rowan, Chip P; Kuk, Jennifer L

    2012-10-01

    It is unclear whether Canadians accurately estimate serving sizes and the number of servings in their diet as intended by Canada's Food Guide (CFG). The objective of this study was to determine if participants can accurately quantify the size of 1 serving and the number of servings consumed per day. White, Black, South Asian, and East Asian adults (n = 145) estimated the quantity of food that constituted 1 CFG serving, and used CFG to estimate the number of servings that they consumed from their 24-h dietary recall. Participants estimated 1 serving size of vegetables and fruit (+43%) and grains (+55%) to be larger than CFG serving sizes (p ≤ 0.05); meat alternatives (-33%) and cheese (-31%) to be smaller than a CFG serving size (p ≤ 0.05); and chicken, carrots, and milk servings accurately (p > 0.05). Serving size estimates were positively correlated with the amount of food participants regularly consumed at 1 meal (p < 0.001). From their food records, all ethnicities estimated that they consumed fewer servings of vegetables and fruit (-15%), grains (-28%), and meat and alternatives (-14%) than they actually consumed, and more servings of milk and alternatives (+26%, p ≤ 0.05) than they actually consumed. Consequently, 68% of participants believed they needed to increase consumption by greater than 200 kcal to meet CFG recommendations. In conclusion, estimating serving sizes to be larger than what is defined by CFG may inadvertently lead to estimating that fewer servings were consumed and overeating if Canadians follow CFG recommendations without guidance. Thus, revision to CFG or greater public education regarding the dietary guidelines is warranted.

  14. Dietary fatty acid enrichment increases egg size and quality of yellow seahorse Hippocampus kuda.

    PubMed

    Saavedra, M; Masdeu, M; Hale, P; Sibbons, C M; Holt, W V

    2014-02-01

    Seahorses populations in the wild have been declining and to restore them a better knowledge of seahorse reproduction is required. This study examines the effect of dietary quality on seahorse fecundity and egg quality. Two different diets were tested with Hippocampus kuda females: frozen mysis (control) and frozen mysis enriched with a liposome spray containing essential fatty acids. Diets were given to females (two groups of five) over a seven week period. After this period, males (fed the control diet) and females were paired and the eggs dropped by the females were collected. Fatty acid profile were analysed and eggs were counted and measured. Results showed that females fed on enriched mysis had larger eggs and that these had a higher content of total polyunsaturated fatty acids. The size of the egg was especially affected in the first spawn, where egg size for females fed the enriched diet was significantly higher than the egg size from control females. This effect was reduced in the following spawning where no significant differences were found. Egg size is an important quality descriptor as seahorse juveniles originating from smaller eggs and/or eggs of poor quality will have less chances of overcoming adverse conditions in the wild and consequently have lower survival and growth rates. This study shows that enriching frozen mysis with polyunsaturated fatty acids increases egg size and egg quality of H. kuda.

  15. Physiological responses to increased brood size and ectoparasite infestation: Adult great tits favour self-maintenance.

    PubMed

    Wegmann, Michele; Voegeli, Beatrice; Richner, Heinz

    2015-03-15

    Different types of stressors trigger responses of different physiological systems, and these responses may contribute differentially to the maintenance of homeostasis, to trade-offs and the evolution of life-history traits. To manipulate two common stressors during reproduction, we infested half of the nests in a naturally breeding great tit population with ectoparasites and simultaneously manipulated brood size, using a 2×2 experimental design. Parents in this model species commonly compensate for ectoparasites by an increase in food provisioning. We assessed parental responses to these concurrent stressors by measuring several physiological stress parameters such as changes in metabolic rate, oxidative stress and expression of heat-shock proteins (Hsp), and explored how these stressors affect the trade-off between self-maintenance and reproduction. Neither flea infestation nor brood size manipulation affected adult metabolic rate, oxidative damage or Hsp levels. Furthermore, we found no interactive effect of the two treatments on adults. However, nestlings in infested nests had lower body mass and lower survival. Nestlings in enlarged broods were lighter and had lower survival, although parents of enlarged broods increased food provisioning rate. The findings suggest that adults favour maintenance of cellular homeostasis, and physiological equilibrium over current reproduction, and that the costs induced by both stressors, flea infestation and increased brood size, are carried by the offspring. It emphasizes the importance of self-maintenance over reproduction in life-history decisions, and more generally the need of including physiological traits for understanding the evolution of life-histories.

  16. Increase in tracheal investment with beetle size supports hypothesis of oxygen limitation on insect gigantism.

    PubMed

    Kaiser, Alexander; Klok, C Jaco; Socha, John J; Lee, Wah-Keat; Quinlan, Michael C; Harrison, Jon F

    2007-08-07

    Recent studies have suggested that Paleozoic hyperoxia enabled animal gigantism, and the subsequent hypoxia drove a reduction in animal size. This evolutionary hypothesis depends on the argument that gas exchange in many invertebrates and skin-breathing vertebrates becomes compromised at large sizes because of distance effects on diffusion. In contrast to vertebrates, which use respiratory and circulatory systems in series, gas exchange in insects is almost exclusively determined by the tracheal system, providing a particularly suitable model to investigate possible limitations of oxygen delivery on size. In this study, we used synchrotron x-ray phase-contrast imaging to visualize the tracheal system and quantify its dimensions in four species of darkling beetles varying in mass by 3 orders of magnitude. We document that, in striking contrast to the pattern observed in vertebrates, larger insects devote a greater fraction of their body to the respiratory system, as tracheal volume scaled with mass1.29. The trend is greatest in the legs; the cross-sectional area of the trachea penetrating the leg orifice scaled with mass1.02, whereas the cross-sectional area of the leg orifice scaled with mass0.77. These trends suggest the space available for tracheae within the leg may ultimately limit the maximum size of extant beetles. Because the size of the tracheal system can be reduced when oxygen supply is increased, hyperoxia, as occurred during late Carboniferous and early Permian, may have facilitated the evolution of giant insects by allowing limbs to reach larger sizes before the tracheal system became limited by spatial constraints.

  17. Increase in tracheal investment with beetle size supports hypothesis of oxygen limitation on insect gigantism

    PubMed Central

    Kaiser, Alexander; Klok, C. Jaco; Socha, John J.; Lee, Wah-Keat; Quinlan, Michael C.; Harrison, Jon F.

    2007-01-01

    Recent studies have suggested that Paleozoic hyperoxia enabled animal gigantism, and the subsequent hypoxia drove a reduction in animal size. This evolutionary hypothesis depends on the argument that gas exchange in many invertebrates and skin-breathing vertebrates becomes compromised at large sizes because of distance effects on diffusion. In contrast to vertebrates, which use respiratory and circulatory systems in series, gas exchange in insects is almost exclusively determined by the tracheal system, providing a particularly suitable model to investigate possible limitations of oxygen delivery on size. In this study, we used synchrotron x-ray phase–contrast imaging to visualize the tracheal system and quantify its dimensions in four species of darkling beetles varying in mass by 3 orders of magnitude. We document that, in striking contrast to the pattern observed in vertebrates, larger insects devote a greater fraction of their body to the respiratory system, as tracheal volume scaled with mass1.29. The trend is greatest in the legs; the cross-sectional area of the trachea penetrating the leg orifice scaled with mass1.02, whereas the cross-sectional area of the leg orifice scaled with mass0.77. These trends suggest the space available for tracheae within the leg may ultimately limit the maximum size of extant beetles. Because the size of the tracheal system can be reduced when oxygen supply is increased, hyperoxia, as occurred during late Carboniferous and early Permian, may have facilitated the evolution of giant insects by allowing limbs to reach larger sizes before the tracheal system became limited by spatial constraints. PMID:17666530

  18. Increased monolayer domain size and patterned growth of tungsten disulfide through controlling surface energy of substrates

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Godin, Kyle; Kang, Kyungnam; Fu, Shichen; Yang, Eui-Hyeok

    2016-08-01

    We report a surface energy-controlled low-pressure chemical vapor deposition growth of WS2 monolayers on SiO2 using pre-growth oxygen plasma treatment of substrates, facilitating increased monolayer surface coverage and patterned growth without lithography. Oxygen plasma treatment of the substrate caused an increase in the average domain size of WS2 monolayers by 78%  ±  2% while having a slight reduction in nucleation density, which translates to increased monolayer surface coverage. This substrate effect on growth was exploited to grow patterned WS2 monolayers by patterned plasma treatment on patterned substrates and by patterned source material with resolutions less than 10 µm. Contact angle-based surface energy measurements revealed a dramatic increase in polar surface energy. A growth model was proposed with lowered activation energies for growth and increased surface diffusion length consistent with the range of results observed. WS2 samples grown with and without oxygen plasma were similar high quality monolayers verified through transmission electron microscopy, selected area electron diffraction, atomic force microscopy, Raman, and photoluminescence measurements. This technique enables the production of large-grain size, patterned WS2 without a post-growth lithography process, thereby providing clean surfaces for device applications.

  19. Increasing the Size of the Microbial Biomass Altered Bacterial Community Structure which Enhances Plant Phosphorus Uptake

    PubMed Central

    Shen, Pu; Murphy, Daniel Vaughan; George, Suman J.; Lapis-Gaza, Hazel; Xu, Minggang

    2016-01-01

    Agricultural production can be limited by low phosphorus (P) availability, with soil P being constrained by sorption and precipitation reactions making it less available for plant uptake. There are strong links between carbon (C) and nitrogen (N) availability and P cycling within soil P pools, with microorganisms being an integral component of soil P cycling mediating the availability of P to plants. Here we tested a conceptual model that proposes (i) the addition of readily-available organic substrates would increase the size of the microbial biomass thus exhausting the pool of easily-available P and (ii) this would cause the microbial biomass to access P from more recalcitrant pools. In this model it is hypothesised that the size of the microbial population is regulating access to less available P rather than the diversity of organisms contained within this biomass. To test this hypothesis we added mixtures of simple organic compounds that reflect typical root exudates at different C:N ratios to a soil microcosm experiment and assessed changes in soil P pools, microbial biomass and bacterial diversity measures. We report that low C:N ratio (C:N = 12.5:1) artificial root exudates increased the size of the microbial biomass while high C:N ratio (C:N = 50:1) artificial root exudates did not result in a similar increase in microbial biomass. Interestingly, addition of the root exudates did not alter bacterial diversity (measured via univariate diversity indices) but did alter bacterial community structure. Where C, N and P supply was sufficient to support plant growth the increase observed in microbial biomass occurred with a concurrent increase in plant yield. PMID:27893833

  20. Oxidative Damage Does Not Occur in Striped Hamsters Raising Natural and Experimentally Increased Litter Size.

    PubMed

    Zhao, Xiao-Ya; Zhang, Ji-Ying; Cao, Jing; Zhao, Zhi-Jun

    2015-01-01

    Life-history theory assumes that animals can balance the allocation of limited energy or resources to the competing demands of growth, reproduction and somatic maintenance, while consequently maximizing their fitness. However, somatic damage caused by oxidative stress in reproductive female animals is species-specific or is tissue dependent. In the present study, several markers of oxidative stress (hydrogen peroxide, H2O2 and malonadialdehyde, MDA) and antioxidant (catalase, CAT and total antioxidant capacity, T-AOC) were examined in striped hamsters during different stages of reproduction with experimentally manipulated litter size. Energy intake, resting metabolic rate (RMR), and mRNA expression of uncoupling protein 1 (UCP1) in brown adipose tissue (BAT) and UCP3 in skeletal muscle were also examined. H2O2 and MDA levels did not change in BAT and liver, although they significantly decreased in skeletal muscle in the lactating hamsters compared to the non-reproductive group. However, H2O2 levels in the brain were significantly higher in lactating hamsters than non-reproductive controls. Experimentally increasing litter size did not cause oxidative stress in BAT, liver and skeletal muscle, but significantly elevated H2O2 levels in the brain. CAT activity of liver decreased, but CAT and T-AOC activity of BAT, skeletal muscle and the brain did not change in lactating hamsters compared to non-reproductive controls. Both antioxidants did not change with the experimentally increasing litter size. RMR significantly increased, but BAT UCP1 mRNA expression decreased with the experimentally increased litter size, suggesting that it was against simple positive links between metabolic rate, UCP1 expression and free radicals levels. It may suggest that the cost of reproduction has negligible effect on oxidative stress or even attenuates oxidative stress in some active tissues in an extensive range of animal species. But the increasing reproductive effort may cause oxidative

  1. Protein-assisted pericyclic reactions: an alternate hypothesis for the action of quantal receptors.

    PubMed Central

    Radding, W; Romo, T; Phillips, G N

    1999-01-01

    The rules for allowable pericyclic reactions indicate that the photoisomerizations of retinals in rhodopsins can be formally analogous to thermally promoted Diels-Alder condensations of monoenes with retinols. With little change in the seven-transmembrane helical environment these latter reactions could mimic the retinal isomerization while providing highly sensitive chemical reception. In this way archaic progenitors of G-protein-coupled chemical quantal receptors such as those for pheromones might have been evolutionarily plagiarized from the photon quantal receptor, rhodopsin, or vice versa. We investigated whether the known structure of bacteriorhodopsin exhibited any similarity in its active site with those of the two known antibody catalysts of Diels-Alder reactions and that of the photoactive yellow protein. A remarkable three-dimensional motif of aromatic side chains emerged in all four proteins despite the drastic differences in backbone structure. Molecular orbital calculations supported the possibility of transient pericyclic reactions as part of the isomerization-signal transduction mechanisms in both bacteriorhodopsin and the photoactive yellow protein. It appears that reactions in all four of the proteins investigated may be biological analogs of the organic chemists' chiral auxiliary-aided Diels-Alder reactions. Thus the light receptor and the chemical receptor subfamilies of the heptahelical receptor family may have been unified at one time by underlying pericyclic chemistry. PMID:10585916

  2. To increase size or decrease density? Different Microcystis species has different choice to form blooms.

    PubMed

    Li, Ming; Zhu, Wei; Guo, Lili; Hu, Jing; Chen, Huaimin; Xiao, Man

    2016-11-14

    The buoyancy of Microcystis colonies is a principal factor determining blooms occurrence but the knowledge of seasonal variation in buoyancy is quite poor because of challenge in analysis method. In this study, a method based on the Stokes' Law after researching on the effects of shapes on settling velocity of Microcystis colonies, whose gas vesicles were collapsed, to accurately measure density was established. The method was used in Lake Taihu. From January to May, mean density of Microcystis colonies decreased from 995 kg m(-3) to 978 kg m(-3) and then increased to 992 kg m(-3) in December. The density of colonies in different Microcystis species was in the order M. wesenbergii > M. aeruginosa > M. ichthyoblabe. For all the Microcystis species, the density of colonies with gas vasicles increased significantly along with the increase of colony size. Our results suggested that the main driving factor of Microcystis blooms formation in Lake Taihu was low density for M. ichthyoblabe from May to July but was large colony size for M. wesenbergii and M. aeruginosa from August to October.

  3. To increase size or decrease density? Different Microcystis species has different choice to form blooms

    PubMed Central

    Li, Ming; Zhu, Wei; Guo, Lili; Hu, Jing; Chen, Huaimin; Xiao, Man

    2016-01-01

    The buoyancy of Microcystis colonies is a principal factor determining blooms occurrence but the knowledge of seasonal variation in buoyancy is quite poor because of challenge in analysis method. In this study, a method based on the Stokes’ Law after researching on the effects of shapes on settling velocity of Microcystis colonies, whose gas vesicles were collapsed, to accurately measure density was established. The method was used in Lake Taihu. From January to May, mean density of Microcystis colonies decreased from 995 kg m−3 to 978 kg m−3 and then increased to 992 kg m−3 in December. The density of colonies in different Microcystis species was in the order M. wesenbergii > M. aeruginosa > M. ichthyoblabe. For all the Microcystis species, the density of colonies with gas vasicles increased significantly along with the increase of colony size. Our results suggested that the main driving factor of Microcystis blooms formation in Lake Taihu was low density for M. ichthyoblabe from May to July but was large colony size for M. wesenbergii and M. aeruginosa from August to October. PMID:27841329

  4. To increase size or decrease density? Different Microcystis species has different choice to form blooms

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Li, Ming; Zhu, Wei; Guo, Lili; Hu, Jing; Chen, Huaimin; Xiao, Man

    2016-11-01

    The buoyancy of Microcystis colonies is a principal factor determining blooms occurrence but the knowledge of seasonal variation in buoyancy is quite poor because of challenge in analysis method. In this study, a method based on the Stokes’ Law after researching on the effects of shapes on settling velocity of Microcystis colonies, whose gas vesicles were collapsed, to accurately measure density was established. The method was used in Lake Taihu. From January to May, mean density of Microcystis colonies decreased from 995 kg m‑3 to 978 kg m‑3 and then increased to 992 kg m‑3 in December. The density of colonies in different Microcystis species was in the order M. wesenbergii > M. aeruginosa > M. ichthyoblabe. For all the Microcystis species, the density of colonies with gas vasicles increased significantly along with the increase of colony size. Our results suggested that the main driving factor of Microcystis blooms formation in Lake Taihu was low density for M. ichthyoblabe from May to July but was large colony size for M. wesenbergii and M. aeruginosa from August to October.

  5. Horizontal transfer of fipronil is enhanced with increased group size in Coptotermes formosanus (Isoptera: Rhinotermitidae).

    PubMed

    Wang, Cai; Henderson, Gregg; Chen, Xuan; Gautam, Bal K

    2013-12-01

    Fipronil is a widely used insecticide for termite control. Although transfer of fipronil among termite cohorts has been investigated in previous studies, no study has yet focused on the influence of termite group size (density) on horizontal transfer. In this study, the mortality of donor and recipient Coptotermes formosanus Shiraki (Isoptera: Rhinotermitidae) was compared among groups of 10, 25, and 50 workers. Most donor termites were dead within 20 h. There was a significantly higher mortality of recipient termites starting at 44 h when in bigger groups. LT50 and LT90 of recipient termites decreased with increase in group size, being significantly shorter in groups of 50 termites compared with groups of 10 termites. Moreover, the variance (within-group difference) of recipient mortality and lethal time estimations was lowest in the groups of 50 termites, indicating a more uniform horizontal transfer of fipronil by termites in bigger groups. Our findings suggest that group size has an influence on fipronil transfer among C. formosanus workers and should be considered as a variable of importance.

  6. Stated response to increased enforcement density and penalty size for speeding and driving unbelted.

    PubMed

    Hössinger, Reinhard; Berger, Wolfgang J

    2012-11-01

    To what extent can traffic offences be reduced through stronger enforcement, higher penalties, and the provision of information to road users? This question was addressed with respect to the offences of "speeding" and "driving unbelted." Data were collected by a telephone survey of admitted speeders, followed by 438 face-to-face stated response interviews. Based on the data collected, separate statistical models were developed for the two offences. The models predict the behavioral effect of increasing enforcement density and/or penalty size as well as the additional effect of providing information to car drivers. All three factors are predicted to be effective in reducing speeding. According to the model, one additional enforcement event per year will cause a driver to reduce his current frequency of speeding by 5%. A penalty increase of 10 Euros is predicted to have the same effect. An announcement of stronger enforcement or higher fines is predicted to have an additional effect on behavior, independent of the actual magnitudes of increase in enforcement or fines. With respect to the use of a seat belt, however, neither an increase in enforcement density nor its announcement is predicted to have a significant effect on driver behavior. An increase in the penalty size is predicted to raise the stated wearing rate, which is already 90% in Austria. It seems that both the fear of punishment and the motivation for driving unbelted are limited, so that there is only a weak tradeoff between the two. This may apply to most traffic offences, with the exception of speeding, which accounts for over 80% of tickets alone, whereas all other offences account for less than 3% each.

  7. Lepidium meyenii (Maca) increases litter size in normal adult female mice

    PubMed Central

    Ruiz-Luna, Ana C; Salazar, Stephanie; Aspajo, Norma J; Rubio, Julio; Gasco, Manuel; Gonzales, Gustavo F

    2005-01-01

    Background Lepidium meyenii, known as Maca, grows exclusively in the Peruvian Andes over 4000 m altitude. It has been used traditionally to increase fertility. Previous scientific studies have demonstrated that Maca increases spermatogenesis and epididymal sperm count. The present study was aimed to investigate the effects of Maca on several fertility parameters of female mice at reproductive age. Methods Adult female Balb/C mice were divided at random into three main groups: i) Reproductive indexes group, ii) Implantation sites group and iii) Assessment of uterine weight in ovariectomized mice. Animals received an aqueous extract of lyophilized Yellow Maca (1 g/Kg BW) or vehicle orally as treatment. In the fertility indexes study, animals received the treatment before, during and after gestation. The fertility index, gestation index, post-natal viability index, weaning viability index and sex ratio were calculated. Sexual maturation was evaluated in the female pups by the vaginal opening (VO) day. In the implantation study, females were checked for implantation sites at gestation day 7 and the embryos were counted. In ovariectomized mice, the uterine weight was recorded at the end of treatment. Results Implantation sites were similar in mice treated with Maca and in controls. All reproductive indexes were similar in both groups of treatment. The number of pups per dam at birth and at postnatal day 4 was significantly higher in the group treated with Maca. VO day occurred earlier as litter size was smaller. Maca did not affect VO day. In ovariectomized mice, the treatment with Maca increased significantly the uterine weights in comparison to their respective control group. Conclusion Administration of aqueous extract of Yellow Maca to adult female mice increases the litter size. Moreover, this treatment increases the uterine weight in ovariectomized animals. Our study confirms for the first time some of the traditional uses of Maca to enhance female fertility. PMID

  8. Developmental mortality increases sex-ratio bias of a size-dimorphic bark beetle

    PubMed Central

    Lachowsky, Leanna E; Reid, Mary L

    2014-01-01

    1. Given sexual size dimorphism, differential mortality owing to body size can lead to sex-biased mortality, proximately biasing sex ratios. This mechanism may apply to mountain pine beetles, Dendroctonus ponderosae Hopkins, which typically have female-biased adult populations (2 : 1) with females larger than males. Smaller males could be more susceptible to stresses than larger females as developing beetles overwinter and populations experience high mortality. 2. Survival of naturally-established mountain pine beetles during the juvenile stage and the resulting adult sex ratios and body sizes (volume) were studied. Three treatments were applied to vary survival in logs cut from trees containing broods of mountain pine beetles. Logs were removed from the forest either in early winter, or in spring after overwintering below snow or after overwintering above snow. Upon removal, logs were placed at room temperature to allow beetles to complete development under similar conditions. 3. Compared with beetles from logs removed in early winter, mortality was higher and the sex ratio was more female-biased in overwintering logs. The bias increased with overwinter mortality. However, sex ratios were female-biased even in early winter, so additional mechanisms, other than overwintering mortality, contributed to the sex-ratio bias. Body volume varied little relative to sex-biased mortality, suggesting other size-independent causes of male-biased mortality. 4. Overwintering mortality is considered a major determinant of mountain pine beetle population dynamics. The disproportionate survival of females, who initiate colonisation of live pine trees, may affect population dynamics in ways that have not been previously considered. PMID:25400320

  9. Dynamic size responses to climate change: prevailing effects of rising temperature drive long-term body size increases in a semi-arid passerine.

    PubMed

    Gardner, Janet L; Amano, Tatsuya; Mackey, Brendan G; Sutherland, William J; Clayton, Mark; Peters, Anne

    2014-07-01

    Changes in animal body size have been widely reported as a correlate of contemporary climate change. Body size affects metabolism and fitness, so changing size has implications for resilience, yet the climatic factors that drive size variation remain poorly understood. We test the role of mean and extreme temperature, rainfall, and remotely sensed primary productivity (NDVI) as drivers of body size in a sedentary, semi-arid Australian passerine, Ptilotula (Lichenostomus)penicillatus, over 23 years. To distinguish effects due to differential growth from changes in population composition, we analysed first-year birds and adults separately and considered climatic variation at three temporal scales (current, previous, and preceding 5 years). The strongest effects related to temperature: in both age classes, larger size was associated with warmer mean temperatures in the previous year, contrary to Bergmann's Rule. Moreover, adults were larger in warmer breeding seasons, while first years was larger after heat waves; these effects are more likely to be mediated through size-dependent mortality, highlighting the role of body size in determining vulnerability to extinction. In addition to temperature, larger adult size was associated with lower primary productivity, which may reflect a trade-off between vegetative growth and nectar production, on which adults rely. Finally, lower rainfall was associated with decreasing size in first year and adults, most likely related to decreased food availability. Overall,body size increased over 23 years, strongly in first-year birds (2.7%) compared with adults (1%), with size outcomes a balance between competing drivers. As rainfall declined over time and productivity remained fairly stable, the temporal increase in body size appears largely driven by rising mean temperature and temperature extremes. Body size responses to environmental change are thus complex and dynamic, driven by effects on growth as well as mortality.

  10. [Characteristics of pedigree cat breeding in the Netherlands: breeds, population increase and litter size].

    PubMed

    Gerrits, P O; Huisman, T; Knol, B W

    1999-03-01

    A survey of the Dutch Cat Fancy was carried out to determine reproductive, patterns of pedigree cats. The data of the present study were obtained by questioning the pedigree registers of the cat clubs participating in the foundation 'Overleg Platform van de Nederlandse Cat Fancy'. The Dutch Cat Fancy registers 34 different cat breeds. From 1992 up to 1996 a total of 25.985 litters were registered. Over this period the number of litters increased from 4989 to 5313. Litters from Longhair and Exotic Shorthair cats comprised the biggest group and accounted for 55% of the total number of litters. However, over this period, the number of Longhair and Exotic Shorthair litters decreased by 9%. Litters from British Shorthair, Birman, Maine Coon and Norwegian Forrest Cat increased in number as did litters from small breeds such as Ragdoll, Bengal and Sphynx. Litters from Abyssinian, Siamese, Oriental Shorthair cats remained relatively the same. The average litter size of the total cat population, based on pedigree certificates, was calculated at 3.3 kittens per litter. For different breeds litter size varied from 2.7 (Longhair and Exotic Shorthair) to 4.3 (Burmese and Maine Coon). Taking into account an average age of 14 years, the total Dutch pedigree cat population was estimated at 240,000 viz. about 10% of the total cat population.

  11. Increase in fruit size of a spontaneous mutant of 'Gala' apple (Malus x domestica Borkh.) is facilitated by altered cell production and enhanced cell size.

    PubMed

    Malladi, Anish; Hirst, Peter M

    2010-06-01

    Fruit size regulation was studied in the apple cultivar 'Gala' and a large fruit size spontaneous mutant of 'Gala', 'Grand Gala' (GG). GG fruits were 15% larger in diameter and 38% heavier than 'Gala' fruits, largely due to an increase in size of the fruit cortex. The mutation in GG altered growth prior to fruit set and during fruit development. Prior to fruit set, the carpel/floral-tube size was enhanced in GG and was associated with higher cell number, larger cell size, and increased ploidy through endoreduplication, an altered form of the cell cycle normally absent in apple. The data suggest that the mutation in GG promotes either cell production or endoreduplication in the carpel/floral-tube cells depending on their competence for division. Ploidy was not altered in GG leaves. During fruit growth, GG fruit cells exited cell production earlier, and with a DNA content of 4C suggesting G2 arrest. Cell size was higher in GG fruits during exit from cell production and at later stages of fruit growth. Final cell diameter in GG fruit cortex cells was 15% higher than that in 'Gala' indicating that enhanced fruit size in GG was facilitated by increased cell size. The normal progression of cell expansion in cells arrested in G2 may account for the increase in cell size. Quantitative RT-PCR analysis indicated higher MdCDKA1 expression and reduced MdCYCA2 expression during early fruit development in GG fruits. Together, the data indicate an important role for cell expansion in regulating apple fruit size.

  12. Oecophylla longinoda (Hymenoptera: Formicidae) Lead to Increased Cashew Kernel Size and Kernel Quality.

    PubMed

    Anato, F M; Sinzogan, A A C; Offenberg, J; Adandonon, A; Wargui, R B; Deguenon, J M; Ayelo, P M; Vayssières, J-F; Kossou, D K

    2017-03-03

    Weaver ants, Oecophylla spp., are known to positively affect cashew, Anacardium occidentale L., raw nut yield, but their effects on the kernels have not been reported. We compared nut size and the proportion of marketable kernels between raw nuts collected from trees with and without ants. Raw nuts collected from trees with weaver ants were 2.9% larger than nuts from control trees (i.e., without weaver ants), leading to 14% higher proportion of marketable kernels. On trees with ants, the kernel: raw nut ratio from nuts damaged by formic acid was 4.8% lower compared with nondamaged nuts from the same trees. Weaver ants provided three benefits to cashew production by increasing yields, yielding larger nuts, and by producing greater proportions of marketable kernel mass.

  13. When bigger is not better: intraspecific competition for pollination increases with population size in invasive milkweeds.

    PubMed

    Ward, Megan; Johnson, Steven D; Zalucki, Myron P

    2013-04-01

    One of the essential requirements for an introduced plant species to become invasive is an ability to reproduce outside the native range, particularly when initial populations are small. If a reproductive Allee effect is operating, plants in small populations will have reduced reproductive success relative to plants in larger populations. Alternatively, if plants in small populations experience less competition for pollination than those in large populations, they may actually have higher levels of reproductive success than plants in large populations. To resolve this uncertainty, we investigated how the per capita fecundity of plants was affected by population size in three invasive milkweed species. Field surveys of seed production in natural populations of different sizes but similar densities were conducted for three pollinator-dependent invasive species, namely Asclepias curassavica, Gomphocarpus fruticosus and G. physocarpus. Additionally, supplemental hand-pollinations were performed in small and large populations in order to determine whether reproductive output was limited by pollinator activity in these populations. Reproductive Allee effects were not detected in any of the study species. Instead, plants in small populations exhibited remarkably high levels of reproductive output compared to those in large populations. Increased fruit production following supplemental hand-pollinations suggested that the lower reproductive output of naturally pollinated plants in large populations is a consequence of pollen limitation rather than limitation due to abiotic resources. This is consistent with increased intraspecific competition for pollination amongst plants in large populations. It is likely that the invasion of these milkweed species in Australia has been enhanced because plants in small founding populations experience less intraspecific competition for pollinators than those in large populations, and thus have the ability to produce copious amounts of

  14. Quantal release of glutamate generates pure kainate and mixed AMPA/kainate EPSCs in hippocampal neurons.

    PubMed

    Cossart, Rosa; Epsztein, Jérôme; Tyzio, Roman; Becq, Hélène; Hirsch, June; Ben-Ari, Yehezkel; Crépel, Valérie

    2002-07-03

    The relative contribution of kainate receptors to ongoing glutamatergic activity is at present unknown. We report the presence of spontaneous, miniature, and minimal stimulation-evoked excitatory postsynaptic currents (EPSCs) that are mediated solely by kainate receptors (EPSC(kainate)) or by both AMPA and kainate receptors (EPSC(AMPA/kainate)). EPSC(kainate) and EPSC(AMPA/kainate) are selectively enriched in CA1 interneurons and mossy fibers synapses of CA3 pyramidal neurons, respectively. In CA1 interneurons, the decay time constant of EPSC(kainate) (circa 10 ms) is comparable to values obtained in heterologous expression systems. In both hippocampal neurons, the quantal release of glutamate generates kainate receptor-mediated EPSCs that provide as much as half of the total glutamatergic current. Kainate receptors are, therefore, key players of the ongoing glutamatergic transmission in the hippocampus.

  15. Quantal release of neurotransmitter: an iterative method for the automatic computation of binomial distribution parameters.

    PubMed

    Belluzzi, O

    1984-01-01

    A computational method is presented by which, when the amplitude-frequency histogram of the excitatory post-synaptic potentials shows a binomial distribution, an accurate evaluation of the statistical parameters p and n may be obtained. The entire procedure is a combination of 3 basic methods: steepest descent, parabolic interpolation and Montecarlo technique. The two statistical parameters are evaluated independently with respect to each other, which makes an effective control of the accuracy of the calculation possible by comparing the p by n product with the average number of quanta released in response to each nerve impulse, conventionally computed. Applications to quantal release studies in both rat and guinea-pig superior cervical ganglia are also presented.

  16. Metabolic pathways further increase the complexity of cell size control in budding yeast

    PubMed Central

    Enserink, Jorrit M.

    2014-01-01

    How organisms regulate their size is a major question in biology. With a few notable exceptions (such as cell divisions in the early embryo), most cells need to reach a critical size in order to initiate a new cell cycle. How cells set a critical cell size, and how they know it has been reached, is not well understood. Using various types of experimental systems, decades ago two main models were proposed for cell size homeostasis: the deterministic model and the probabilistic model.

  17. Survival and population size of a resident bird species are declining as temperature increases.

    PubMed

    Santisteban, Leonard; Benkman, Craig W; Fetz, Trevor; Smith, Julie W

    2012-03-01

    1. A large number of migratory bird species appear to be declining as the result of climate change, but whether resident bird species have or will be adversely affected by climate change is less clear. We focus on the South Hills crossbill (Loxia curvirostra complex), which is endemic to about 70 km(2) of Rocky Mountain lodgepole pine (Pinus contorta latifolia) forest in southern Idaho, USA. 2. Our results indicate that the South Hills crossbill has declined by over 60% between 2003 and 2008, and that decreasing adult survival drives this population decline. 3. We evaluated the relative support for multiple hypotheses linking crossbill survival to climate, an ectoparasitic mite (scaly-leg mites Knemidokoptes jamaicensis), and the recent emergence of West Nile virus. Changes in adult apparent survival rate were closely associated with average spring and annual temperatures, and with high temperatures (≥32 °C) during summer, which have increased during the last decade. In contrast, there was little evidence that scaly-leg mites or West Nile virus contributed to recent declines in adult survival. 4. The most probable mechanism causing the decline in adult survival and population size is a decrease in the availability of their primary food resource, seeds in serotinous pine cones. Cone production has declined with increasing annual temperatures, and these cones appear to be prematurely opening owing to increasingly hot summer conditions releasing their seeds and reducing the carrying capacity for crossbills later in the year. 5. In light of regional climate change forecasts, which include an increase in both annual temperature and hot days (>32 °C), and the likely disappearance of lodgepole pine from southern Idaho by the end of this century, additional research is needed to determine how to maintain lodgepole pine forests and their supply of seeds to conserve one of the few bird species endemic to the continental United States.

  18. Overexpressing Arabidopsis ABF3 increases tolerance to multiple abiotic stresses and reduces leaf size in alfalfa.

    PubMed

    Wang, Zhi; Su, Guoxia; Li, Min; Ke, Qingbo; Kim, Soo Young; Li, Hongbing; Huang, Jin; Xu, Bingcheng; Deng, Xi-Ping; Kwak, Sang-Soo

    2016-12-01

    Arabidopsis ABSCISIC ACID-RESPONSIVE ELEMENT-BINDING FACTOR 3 (ABF3), a bZIP transcription factor, plays an important role in regulating multiple stress responses in plants. Overexpressing AtABF3 increases tolerance to various stresses in several plant species. Alfalfa (Medicago sativa L.), one of the most important perennial forage crops worldwide, has high yields, high nutritional value, and good palatability and is widely distributed in irrigated and semi-arid regions throughout the world. However, drought and salt stress pose major constraints to alfalfa production. In this study, we developed transgenic alfalfa plants (cv. Xinjiang Daye) expressing AtABF3 under the control of the sweetpotato oxidative stress-inducible SWPA2 promoter (referred to as SAF plants) via Agrobacterium tumefaciens-mediated transformation. After drought stress treatment, we selected two transgenic lines with high expression of AtABF3, SAF5 and SAF6, for further characterization. Under normal conditions, SAF plants showed smaller leaf size compared to non-transgenic (NT) plants, while no other morphological changes were observed. Moreover, SAF plants exhibited enhanced drought stress tolerance and better growth under drought stress treatment, which was accompanied by a reduced transpiration rate and lower reactive oxygen species contents. In addition, SAF plants showed an increased tolerance to salt and oxidative stress. Therefore, these transgenic AtABF3 alfalfa plants might be useful for breeding forage crops with enhanced tolerance to environmental stress for use in sustainable agriculture on marginal lands.

  19. Territory Tenure Increases with Repertoire Size in Brownish-Flanked Bush Warbler

    PubMed Central

    Xia, Canwei; Wei, Chentao; Zhang, Yanyun

    2015-01-01

    Song repertoire size is often cited as a classic example of a secondary sexual trait in birds. Models of sexual selection and empirical tests of their predictions have often related secondary sexual traits to longevity. However, the relationship between repertoire size and longevity is unclear. Using capture-mark-recapture studies in two populations of the brownish-flanked bush warbler Cettia fortipes, we found that males with a repertoire size of three maintained territory tenure for a longer duration than did males with a repertoire size of two. These results provide evidence that even a minimal difference in repertoire size can serve as a potential signal of territory tenure capability. PMID:25822524

  20. Increasing zooplankton size diversity enhances the strength of top-down control on phytoplankton through diet niche partitioning.

    PubMed

    Ye, Lin; Chang, Chun-Yi; García-Comas, Carmen; Gong, Gwo-Ching; Hsieh, Chih-Hao

    2013-09-01

    1. The biodiversity-ecosystem functioning debate is a central topic in ecology. Recently, there has been a growing interest in size diversity because body size is sensitive to environmental changes and is one of the fundamental characteristics of organisms linking many ecosystem properties. However, how size diversity affects ecosystem functioning is an important yet unclear issue. 2. To fill the gap, with large-scale field data from the East China Sea, we tested the novel hypothesis that increasing zooplankton size diversity enhances top-down control on phytoplankton (H1) and compared it with five conventional hypotheses explaining the top-down control: flatter zooplankton size spectrum enhances the strength of top-down control (H2); nutrient enrichment lessens the strength of top-down control (H3); increasing zooplankton taxonomic diversity enhances the strength of top-down control (H4); increasing fish predation decreases the strength of top-down control of zooplankton on phytoplankton through trophic cascade (H5); increasing temperature intensifies the strength of top-down control (H6). 3. The results of univariate analyses support the hypotheses based on zooplankton size diversity (H1), zooplankton size spectrum (H2), nutrient (H3) and zooplankton taxonomic diversity (H4), but not the hypotheses based on fish predation (H5) and temperature (H6). More in-depth analyses indicate that zooplankton size diversity is the most important factor in determining the strength of top-down control on phytoplankton in the East China Sea. 4. Our results suggest a new potential mechanism that increasing predator size diversity enhances the strength of top-down control on prey through diet niche partitioning. This mechanism can be explained by the optimal predator-prey body-mass ratio concept. Suppose each size group of zooplankton predators has its own optimal phytoplankton prey size, increasing size diversity of zooplankton would promote diet niche partitioning of predators

  1. Optimal character-size exploration for increasing throughput of MCC lithographic systems

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sugihara, Makoto

    2009-03-01

    We propose a character size optimization technique to enhance throughput of multi-column-cell (MCC) lithographic systems in which transistor patterns are projected with multiple column cells in parallel. Each and every column cell is capable of projecting patterns with character projection (CP) and variable shaped beam (VSB) methods. Seeking the optimal character size of characters contributes to minimizing the number of EB shots and reducing the fabrication cost for ICs. Experimental results show that the character size optimization technique reduced 70.6% of EB shots in the best case with an available electron beam size.

  2. Increased juvenile predation is not associated with evolved differences in adult brain size in Trinidadian killifish (Rivulus hartii).

    PubMed

    Beston, Shannon M; Broyles, Whitnee; Walsh, Matthew R

    2017-02-01

    Vertebrates exhibit extensive variation in brain size. The long-standing assumption is that this variation is driven by ecologically mediated selection. Recent work has shown that an increase in predator-induced mortality is associated with evolved increases and decreases in brain size. Thus, the manner in which predators induce shifts in brain size remains unclear. Increased predation early in life is a key driver of many adult traits, including life-history and behavioral traits. Such results foreshadow a connection between age-specific mortality and selection on adult brain size. Trinidadian killifish, Rivulus hartii, are found in sites with and without guppies, Poecilia reticulata. The densities of Rivulus drop dramatically in sites with guppies because guppies prey upon juvenile Rivulus. Previous work has shown that guppy predation is associated with the evolution of adult life-history traits in Rivulus. In this study, we compared second-generation laboratory-born Rivulus from sites with and without guppies for differences in brain size and associated trade-offs between brain size and other components of fitness. Despite the large amount of existing research on the importance of early-life events on the evolution of adult traits, and the role of predation on both behavior and brain size, we did not find an association between the presence of guppies and evolutionary shifts in Rivulus brain size. Such results argue that increased rates of juvenile mortality may not alter selection on adult brain size.

  3. Increased brain size in mammals is associated with size variations in gene families with cell signalling, chemotaxis and immune-related functions.

    PubMed

    Castillo-Morales, Atahualpa; Monzón-Sandoval, Jimena; Urrutia, Araxi O; Gutiérrez, Humberto

    2014-01-22

    Genomic determinants underlying increased encephalization across mammalian lineages are unknown. Whole genome comparisons have revealed large and frequent changes in the size of gene families, and it has been proposed that these variations could play a major role in shaping morphological and physiological differences among species. Using a genome-wide comparative approach, we examined changes in gene family size (GFS) and degree of encephalization in 39 fully sequenced mammalian species and found a significant over-representation of GFS variations in line with increased encephalization in mammals. We found that this relationship is not accounted for by known correlates of brain size such as maximum lifespan or body size and is not explained by phylogenetic relatedness. Genes involved in chemotaxis, immune regulation and cell signalling-related functions are significantly over-represented among those gene families most highly correlated with encephalization. Genes within these families are prominently expressed in the human brain, particularly the cortex, and organized in co-expression modules that display distinct temporal patterns of expression in the developing cortex. Our results suggest that changes in GFS associated with encephalization represent an evolutionary response to the specific functional requirements underlying increased brain size in mammals.

  4. Sample size calculations in human electrophysiology (EEG and ERP) studies: A systematic review and recommendations for increased rigor.

    PubMed

    Larson, Michael J; Carbine, Kaylie A

    2017-01-01

    There is increasing focus across scientific fields on adequate sample sizes to ensure non-biased and reproducible effects. Very few studies, however, report sample size calculations or even the information needed to accurately calculate sample sizes for grants and future research. We systematically reviewed 100 randomly selected clinical human electrophysiology studies from six high impact journals that frequently publish electroencephalography (EEG) and event-related potential (ERP) research to determine the proportion of studies that reported sample size calculations, as well as the proportion of studies reporting the necessary components to complete such calculations. Studies were coded by the two authors blinded to the other's results. Inter-rater reliability was 100% for the sample size calculations and kappa above 0.82 for all other variables. Zero of the 100 studies (0%) reported sample size calculations. 77% utilized repeated-measures designs, yet zero studies (0%) reported the necessary variances and correlations among repeated measures to accurately calculate future sample sizes. Most studies (93%) reported study statistical values (e.g., F or t values). Only 40% reported effect sizes, 56% reported mean values, and 47% reported indices of variance (e.g., standard deviations/standard errors). Absence of such information hinders accurate determination of sample sizes for study design, grant applications, and meta-analyses of research and whether studies were adequately powered to detect effects of interest. Increased focus on sample size calculations, utilization of registered reports, and presenting information detailing sample size calculations and statistics for future researchers are needed and will increase sample size-related scientific rigor in human electrophysiology research.

  5. Increased maleness at flowering stage and femaleness at fruiting stage with size in an andromonoecious perennial, Veratrum nigrum.

    PubMed

    Liao, Wan-Jin; Zhang, Da-Yong

    2008-08-01

    Theory predicts that cosexual plants should adjust their resource investment in male and female functions according to their size if female and male fitness are differentially affected by size. However, few empirical studies have been carried out at both the flowering and fruiting stages to adequately address size-dependent sex allocation in cosexual plants. In this paper, we investigated resource investment between female and male reproduction, and their size-dependence in a perennial andromonoecious herb, Veratrum nigrum L. We sampled 192 flowering plants, estimated their standardized phenotypic gender, and assessed the resource investment in male and female functions in terms of absolute dry biomass. At the flowering stage, male investment increased with plant size more rapidly than female investment, and the standardized phenotypic femaleness (ranging from 0.267 to 0.776) was negatively correlated with plant size. By contrast, female biased allocation was found at the fruiting stage, although both flower biomass and fruit biomass were positively correlated with plant size. We propose that increased maleness with plant size at the flowering stage may represent an adaptive strategy for andromonoecious plants, because male flowers promote both male and female fertility by increasing pollinator attraction without aggravating pollen discounting.

  6. Large increase in nest size linked to climate change: an indicator of life history, senescence and condition.

    PubMed

    Møller, Anders Pape; Nielsen, Jan Tøttrup

    2015-11-01

    Many animals build extravagant nests that exceed the size required for successful reproduction. Large nests may signal the parenting ability of nest builders suggesting that nests may have a signaling function. In particular, many raptors build very large nests for their body size. We studied nest size in the goshawk Accipiter gentilis, which is a top predator throughout most of the Nearctic. Both males and females build nests, and males provision their females and offspring with food. Nest volume in the goshawk is almost three-fold larger than predicted from their body size. Nest size in the goshawk is highly variable and may reach more than 600 kg for a bird that weighs ca. 1 kg. While 8.5% of nests fell down, smaller nests fell down more often than large nests. There was a hump-shaped relationship between nest volume and female age, with a decline in nest volume late in life, as expected for senescence. Clutch size increased with nest volume. Nest volume increased during 1977-2014 in an accelerating fashion, linked to increasing spring temperature during April, when goshawks build and start reproduction. These findings are consistent with nest size being a reliable signal of parental ability, with large nest size signaling superior parenting ability and senescence, and also indicating climate warming.

  7. Asymmetric forceps increase fighting success among males of similar size in the maritime earwig

    PubMed Central

    Munoz, Nicole E.; Zink, Andrew G.

    2012-01-01

    Extreme asymmetric morphologies are hypothesized to serve an adaptive function that counteracts sexual selection for symmetry. However direct tests of function for asymmetries are lacking, particularly in the context of animal weapons. The weapon of the maritime earwig, Anisolabis maritima, exhibits sizeable variation in the extent of directional asymmetry within and across body sizes, making it an ideal candidate for investigating the function of asymmetry. In this study, we characterized the extent of weapon asymmetry, characterized the manner in which asymmetric weapons are used in contests, staged dyadic contests between males of different size classes and analyzed the correlates of fighting success. In contests between large males, larger individuals won more fights and emerged as the dominant male. In contests between small males, however, weapon asymmetry was more influential in predicting overall fighting success than body size. This result reveals an advantage of asymmetric weaponry among males that are below the mean size in the population. A forceps manipulation experiment suggests that asymmetry may be an indirect, correlate of a morphologically independent factor that affects fighting ability. PMID:22984320

  8. Increasing seed size and quality by manipulating BIG SEEDS 1 in legume species

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Plant organs such as seeds are primary sources of food for both humans and animals. Seed size is one of the major agronomic traits that have been selected in crop plants during their domestication. Legume seeds are a major source of dietary proteins and oils. Here, we report a novel and conserved ro...

  9. Automated thinning increases uniformity of in-row spacing and plant size in romaine lettuce

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Low availability and high cost of farm hand labor make automated thinners a faster and cheaper alternative to hand thinning in lettuce (Lactuca sativa L.). However, the effects of this new technology on uniformity of plant spacing and size as well as crop yield are not proven. Three experiments wer...

  10. When a Burr Can Not Penetrate the Calcified Lesion, Increasing Burr Size as Well as Decreasing Burr Size Can Be a Solution in Rotational Atherectomy.

    PubMed

    Sakakura, Kenichi; Taniguchi, Yousuke; Yamamoto, Kei; Wada, Hiroshi; Momomura, Shin-Ichi; Fujita, Hideo

    2017-03-02

    In rotational atherectomy (RA), several burr sizes are available, such as 1.25 mm, 1.5 mm, 1.75 mm, or ≥ 2.0 mm. It is important to select an appropriate burr size for each lesion because rotational atherectomy has several unique complications regarding burrs such as entrapment or perforation. When a burr cannot penetrate the lesion, downsizing of the burr is generally recommended. Also, if the smallest burr (1.25 mm) cannot penetrate the lesion, a change to a more supportive or larger French guiding catheter has been recommended. We describe the case of a 68 year-old female who was referred to our department for percutaneous coronary intervention to the calcified stenosis in the middle of the left anterior descending coronary artery. We used the smallest burr (1.25 mm) and a supportive 7 Fr guiding catheter to penetrate the lesion. However, the smallest burr could not pass the lesion even after 14 sessions (total ablation time: 339 seconds). We intentionally increased the burr size from 1.25 mm to 1.5 mm. The 1.5 mm burr successfully passed the lesion without any perforation or burr entrapment. In this manuscript, we discuss why increasing the burr size was successful for this severely calcified lesion that was not penetrated by the smallest burr.

  11. Inorganic and organic mercury chloride toxicity to Coturnix: Sensitivity related to age and quantal assessment of physiologic responses

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Hill, E.F.

    1982-01-01

    The toxicities of mercuric chloride (HgCl(,2)) and methylmercuric chloride (CH(,3)HgCl) were compared for coturnix (Coturnix coturnix japonica) from hatching to adulthood. Comparisons were based on: (1) Median lethal dosages (LD50) derived by administering single peroral and single intramuscular dosages of mercury, (2) median lethal concentrations (LC50) derived by feeding mercury for 5 days, (3) median toxic concentrations (TC50) derived by feeding mercury 9 weeks and measuring plasma enzyme activity, plasma electrolytes, and other blood constituents, and (4) transient changes of various blood chemistries following a single peroral dose of mercury. Acute peroral and intramuscular LD50s for HgCl(,2) and CH(,3)HgCl increased by two- to threefold for coturnix chicks from hatching to 4 weeks of age. Concomitantly, the LC50s also increased, but the important difference between test procedures was that with both single dose routes of exposure the toxicity ratios, i.e., HgCl(,2)/CH(,3)HgCl, at each age were about 2 to 2.5 compared to about 100 for the LC50s. For example, at 2 weeks of age the peroral LD50s for HgCl(,2) and CH(,3)HgCl were 42 and 18 mg/kg; the dietary LC50s were 5086 and 47 ppm for HgCl(,2) and CH(,3)HgCl. The 9 week feeding trial was not associated with gross effects from either HgCl(,2) at 0.5 to 32 ppm or CH(,3)HgCl at 0.125 to 8 ppm. However, subtle responses were detected for the plasma enzymes aspartate aminotransferase, lactate dehydrogenase, and ornithine carbamoyl transferase and could be quantified by probit analysis. This quantal procedure was based on establishment of a normal value for each enzyme and classing outliers as respondents. A 'hazard index' based on the TC50 for an enzyme divided by the LD50 or LC50 was introduced. The single oral dosages of HgCl(,2) and CH(,3)HgCl showed that ratios of alanine aminotransferase, lactate dehydrogenase, and orinthine carbamoyl transferase for the liver and kidneys of adult coturnix were opposite from

  12. Inorganic and organic mercury chloride toxicity to Coturnix: sensitivity related to age and quantal assessment of physiologic responses

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Hill, E.F.

    1981-01-01

    The toxicities of mercuric chloride (HgCl(,2)) and methylmercuric chloride (CH(,3)HgCl) were compared for coturnix (Coturnix coturnix japonica) from hatching to adulthood. Comparisons were based on: (1) Median lethal dosages (LD50) derived by administering single peroral and single intramuscular dosages of mercury, (2) median lethal concentrations (LC50) derived by feeding mercury for 5 days, (3) median toxic concentrations (TC50) derived by feeding mercury 9 weeks and measuring plasma enzyme activity, plasma electrolytes, and other blood constituents, and (4) transient changes of various blood chemistries following a single peroral dose of mercury. Acute peroral and intramuscular LD50s for HgCl(,2) and CH(,3)HgCl increased by two- to threefold for coturnix chicks from hatching to 4 weeks of age. Concomitantly, the LC50s also increased, but the important difference between test procedures was that with both single dose routes of exposure the toxicity ratios, i.e., HgCl(,2)/CH(,3)HgCl, at each age were about 2 to 2.5 compared to about 100 for the LC50s. For example, at 2 weeks of age the peroral LD50s for HgCl(,2) and CH(,3)HgCl were 42 and 18 mg/kg; the dietary LC50s were 5086 and 47 ppm for HgCl(,2) and CH(,3)HgCl. The 9 week feeding trial was not associated with gross effects from either HgCl(,2) at 0.5 to 32 ppm or CH(,3)HgCl at 0.125 to 8 ppm. However, subtle responses were detected for the plasma enzymes aspartate aminotransferase, lactate dehydrogenase, and ornithine carbamoyl transferase and could be quantified by probit analysis. This quantal procedure was based on establishment of a normal value for each enzyme and classing outliers as respondents. A 'hazard index' based on the TC50 for an enzyme divided by the LD50 or LC50 was introduced. The single oral dosages of HgCl(,2) and CH(,3)HgCl showed that ratios of alanine aminotransferase, lactate dehydrogenase, and orinthine carbamoyl transferase for the liver and kidneys of adult coturnix were opposite from

  13. Increased temperatures combined with lowered salinities differentially impact oyster size class growth and mortality

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    LaPeyre, Megan K.; Rybovich, Molly; Hall, Steven G.; La Peyre, Jerome F.

    2016-01-01

    Changes in the timing and interaction of seasonal high temperatures and low salinities as predicted by climate change models could dramatically alter oyster population dynamics. Little is known explicitly about how low salinity and high temperature combinations affect spat (<25mm), seed (25–75mm), andmarket (>75mm) oyster growth and mortality. Using field and laboratory studies, this project quantified the combined effects of extremely low salinities (<5) and high temperatures (>30°C) on growth and survival of spat, seed, andmarket-sized oysters. In 2012 and 2013, hatchery-produced oysters were placed in open and closed cages at three sites in Breton Sound, LA, along a salinity gradient that typically ranged from 5 to 20. Growth and mortality were recorded monthly. Regardless of size class, oysters at the lowest salinity site (annualmean = 4.8) experienced significantly highermortality and lower growth than oysters located in higher salinity sites (annual means = 11.1 and 13.0, respectively); furthermore, all oysters in open cages at the two higher salinity sites experienced higher mortality than in closed cages, likely due to predation. To explicitly examine oyster responses to extreme low salinity and high temperature combinations, a series of laboratory studies were conducted. Oysters were placed in 18 tanks in a fully crossed temperature (25°C, 32°C) by salinity (1, 5, and 15) study with three replicates, and repeated at least twice for each oyster size class. Regardless of temperature, seed and market oysters held in low salinity tanks (salinity 1) experienced 100% mortality within 7 days. In contrast, at salinity 5, temperature significantly affected mortality; oysters in all size classes experienced greater than 50%mortality at 32°C and less than 40%mortality at 25°C. At the highest salinity tested (15), only market-sized oysters held at 32°C experienced significant mortality (>60%). These studies demonstrate that high water temperatures (>30°C) and

  14. The analysis of dose-response curve from bioassays with quantal response: Deterministic or statistical approaches?

    PubMed

    Mougabure-Cueto, G; Sfara, V

    2016-04-25

    Dose-response relations can be obtained from systems at any structural level of biological matter, from the molecular to the organismic level. There are two types of approaches for analyzing dose-response curves: a deterministic approach, based on the law of mass action, and a statistical approach, based on the assumed probabilities distribution of phenotypic characters. Models based on the law of mass action have been proposed to analyze dose-response relations across the entire range of biological systems. The purpose of this paper is to discuss the principles that determine the dose-response relations. Dose-response curves of simple systems are the result of chemical interactions between reacting molecules, and therefore are supported by the law of mass action. In consequence, the shape of these curves is perfectly sustained by physicochemical features. However, dose-response curves of bioassays with quantal response are not explained by the simple collision of molecules but by phenotypic variations among individuals and can be interpreted as individual tolerances. The expression of tolerance is the result of many genetic and environmental factors and thus can be considered a random variable. In consequence, the shape of its associated dose-response curve has no physicochemical bearings; instead, they are originated from random biological variations. Due to the randomness of tolerance there is no reason to use deterministic equations for its analysis; on the contrary, statistical models are the appropriate tools for analyzing these dose-response relations.

  15. QUAD: a computer package for the analysis of QUantal Assay Data.

    PubMed

    Morgan, B J; Pack, S E; Smith, D M

    1989-12-01

    The computer package QUAD has been developed at the University of Kent, U.K. It is menu driven and written in Advanced BASIC. It runs on IBM PC compatible machines equipped with a suitable graphics facility such as CGA or simulated CGA. QUAD is available on a floppy disk, for a small handling charge. QUAD has four main functions: it performs a logit analysis of quantal assay data; it provides a flexible way of analysing the data, allowing dose transformations and providing alternative confidence intervals for EDp values; it produces a range of diagnostics for assessing the fit of models to data; it provides and fits two families of extended models, each containing the logit as a special case. The package makes use of the latest statistical research, and fitted models are displayed by means of the good graphics facilities available on microcomputers. This document describes the facilities available in detail, and provides and discusses, illustrations of the package at work. QUAD has been designed as a pilot package. Further additions and developments are planned and described later.

  16. Form and Size Matter: Increased Risk of Thrombosis in Microvessels with Surgically Created Endothelial Lesions.

    PubMed

    Mücke, Thomas; Wolff, Constantin; von Düring, Monika; Mitchell, David A; Ritschl, Lucas M; Fichter, Andreas M

    2017-01-01

    Background Atherosclerosis is a known risk factor for flap loss in microsurgery. Several microsurgical techniques, like plaque removal, have been proposed for atherosclerotic vessels, but these techniques often induce intimal injuries. The aim of this study was to investigate the impact of various endothelial defects on the risk of thrombosis in a rat acute intimal injury model. Methods Endothelial defects of various forms and sizes were created in the abdominal aorta of 30 male Wistar rats following a strict protocol. Defect sizes were measured and classified as round, horizontal, or vertical based on their configuration. An hour after reestablishing the blood flow, the abdominal aorta was harvested and the operation site was assessed for signs of thrombosis clinically and using light microscopy. Univariate and multiple linear regression analysis were performed to identify possible influencing factors on thrombosis. Results The mean defect size was 2.65 ± 1.19 mm(2). Intimal lesions were classified as round in 36.7%, horizontal in 33.3%, and vertical in 30% of specimens. Thrombus formation was detected in 46.7% clinically and in 50% histologically. Univariate regression analysis revealed that defect size (p = 0.048) and vertical form (p = 0.017) were significantly associated with thrombus formation. Multiple regression analysis corroborated vertical defects as a risk factor for thrombosis (p = 0.03). Conclusion Endothelial injuries are associated with a high risk of thrombosis with highest risks associated with vertical defects. Arteries should be carefully examined for intimal defects before microvascular anastomosis, especially in the atherosclerotic patient.

  17. Increasing zooplankton size diversity enhances the strength of top-down control on phytoplankton in the East China Sea

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ye, L.; Chang, C.; García-Comas, C.; Gong, G.; Hsieh, C.

    2012-12-01

    Body size is one of the fundamental characteristics of organisms linking many ecosystem properties and functions. Recent studies suggest that environmental changes alter the size structure of pelagic food webs; however, ecosystem consequences of such changes remain unclear. Here we tested our main hypothesis that increasing zooplankton size diversity enhances top-down control on phytoplankton in the East China Sea (H1), as well as five conventional hypotheses explaining the top-down control: shallower zooplankton size spectrum enhances the strength of top-down control (H2); nutrient enrichment lessens the strength of top-down control (H3); increasing zooplankton taxonomic diversity enhances the strength of top-down control (H4); increasing fish predation is linked to decreasing the strength of top-down control of zooplankton on phytoplankton (H5); increasing temperature intensifies the strength of top-down control (H6). While the results of our univariate analyses support H1, H2, H3, and H4, more in depth analyses indicate that zooplankton size diversity is the most important factor in determining the strength of top-down control on phytoplankton in East China Sea. Our results suggest a new potential mechanism that increasing predator size diversity enhances the strength of top-down control on prey through diet niche partitioning. This mechanism can be explained by the concept of optimal predator-prey body-mass ratio concept. Suppose each size group of zooplankton predators has its own optimal phytoplankton prey size, increasing size diversity of zooplankton would promote diet niche partitioning of predators and thus elevates the top-down control.Fig. 1 Scatter plots the relationship between zooplankton/phytoplankton biomass ratio versus (A) zooplankton size diversity, (B) slope of zooplankton size spectrum, (C) Zoolankton Shannon diversity, (D) NO3, (E) PO4, (F) SiO3, (G) water temperature, and (H) fish larvae density in the East China Sea. Table 1. Results of the

  18. Interaction of temperature and an environmental stressor: Moina macrocopa responds with increased body size, increased lifespan, and increased offspring numbers slightly above its temperature optimum.

    PubMed

    Engert, Antonia; Chakrabarti, Shumon; Saul, Nadine; Bittner, Michal; Menzel, Ralph; Steinberg, Christian E W

    2013-02-01

    For organisms, temperature is one of the most important environmental factors and gains increasing importance due to global warming, since increasing temperatures may pose organisms close to their environmental tolerance limits and, thus, they may become more vulnerable to environmental stressors. We analyzed the temperature-dependence of the water-soluble antioxidant capacity of the cladoceran Moina macrocopa and evaluated its life trait variables with temperature (15, 20, 25, 30°C) and humic substance (HS) concentrations (0, 0.18, 0.36, 0.90, 1.79 mM DOC) as stressors. Temperatures below and above the apparent optimum (20°C) reduced the antioxidative capacity. Additions of HSs increased body length, but decreased mean lifespan at 15 and 20°C. There was no clear HS-effect on offspring numbers at 15, 20, and 30°C. At 25°C with increasing HS-concentration, lifespan was extended and offspring numbers increased tremendously, reaching 250% of the control. Although the applied HS preparation possesses estrogenic and antiandrogenic activities, a xenohormone mechanism does not seem plausible for the reproductive increase, because comparable effects did not occur at other temperatures. A more convincing explanation appears to be the mitohormesis hypothesis which states that a certain increase of reactive oxygen production leads to improved health and longevity and, with Moina, also to increased offspring numbers. Our results suggest that at least with the eurythermic M. macrocopa, a temperature above the optimum can be beneficial for several life trait variables, even when combined with a chemical stressor. Temperatures approximately 10°C above its optimum appear to adversely affect the lifespan and reproduction of M. macrocopa. This indicates that this cladoceran species seems to be able to utilize temperature as an ecological resource in a range slightly above its thermal optimum.

  19. Evidence that the rate of strong selective sweeps increases with population size in the great apes

    PubMed Central

    Nam, Kiwoong; Munch, Kasper; Mailund, Thomas; Nater, Alexander; Greminger, Maja Patricia; Krützen, Michael; Marquès-Bonet, Tomàs; Schierup, Mikkel Heide

    2017-01-01

    Quantifying the number of selective sweeps and their combined effects on genomic diversity in humans and other great apes is notoriously difficult. Here we address the question using a comparative approach to contrast diversity patterns according to the distance from genes in all great ape taxa. The extent of diversity reduction near genes compared with the rest of intergenic sequences is greater in a species with larger effective population size. Also, the maximum distance from genes at which the diversity reduction is observed is larger in species with large effective population size. In Sumatran orangutans, the overall genomic diversity is ∼30% smaller than diversity levels far from genes, whereas this reduction is only 9% in humans. We show by simulation that selection against deleterious mutations in the form of background selection is not expected to cause these differences in diversity among species. Instead, selective sweeps caused by positive selection can reduce diversity level more severely in a large population if there is a higher number of selective sweeps per unit time. We discuss what can cause such a correlation, including the possibility that more frequent sweeps in larger populations are due to a shorter waiting time for the right mutations to arise. PMID:28137852

  20. Evidence that the rate of strong selective sweeps increases with population size in the great apes.

    PubMed

    Nam, Kiwoong; Munch, Kasper; Mailund, Thomas; Nater, Alexander; Greminger, Maja Patricia; Krützen, Michael; Marquès-Bonet, Tomàs; Schierup, Mikkel Heide

    2017-02-14

    Quantifying the number of selective sweeps and their combined effects on genomic diversity in humans and other great apes is notoriously difficult. Here we address the question using a comparative approach to contrast diversity patterns according to the distance from genes in all great ape taxa. The extent of diversity reduction near genes compared with the rest of intergenic sequences is greater in a species with larger effective population size. Also, the maximum distance from genes at which the diversity reduction is observed is larger in species with large effective population size. In Sumatran orangutans, the overall genomic diversity is ∼30% smaller than diversity levels far from genes, whereas this reduction is only 9% in humans. We show by simulation that selection against deleterious mutations in the form of background selection is not expected to cause these differences in diversity among species. Instead, selective sweeps caused by positive selection can reduce diversity level more severely in a large population if there is a higher number of selective sweeps per unit time. We discuss what can cause such a correlation, including the possibility that more frequent sweeps in larger populations are due to a shorter waiting time for the right mutations to arise.

  1. Recombination in Streptococcus pneumoniae Lineages Increase with Carriage Duration and Size of the Polysaccharide Capsule

    PubMed Central

    Andam, Cheryl P.; Harris, Simon R.; Cornick, Jennifer E.; Yang, Marie; Bricio-Moreno, Laura; Kamng’ona, Arox W.; French, Neil; Heyderman, Robert S.; Kadioglu, Aras; Everett, Dean B.; Bentley, Stephen D.

    2016-01-01

    ABSTRACT Streptococcus pneumoniae causes a high burden of invasive pneumococcal disease (IPD) globally, especially in children from resource-poor settings. Like many bacteria, the pneumococcus can import DNA from other strains or even species by transformation and homologous recombination, which has allowed the pneumococcus to evade clinical interventions such as antibiotics and pneumococcal conjugate vaccines (PCVs). Pneumococci are enclosed in a complex polysaccharide capsule that determines the serotype; the capsule varies in size and is associated with properties including carriage prevalence and virulence. We determined and quantified the association between capsule and recombination events using genomic data from a diverse collection of serotypes sampled in Malawi. We determined both the amount of variation introduced by recombination relative to mutation (the relative rate) and how many individual recombination events occur per isolate (the frequency). Using univariate analyses, we found an association between both recombination measures and multiple factors associated with the capsule, including duration and prevalence of carriage. Because many capsular factors are correlated, we used multivariate analysis to correct for collinearity. Capsule size and carriage duration remained positively associated with recombination, although with a reduced P value, and this effect may be mediated through some unassayed additional property associated with larger capsules. This work describes an important impact of serotype on recombination that has been previously overlooked. While the details of how this effect is achieved remain to be determined, it may have important consequences for the serotype-specific response to vaccines and other interventions. PMID:27677790

  2. Amelioration of insulin resistance by rosiglitazone is associated with increased adipose cell size in obese type 2 diabetic patients

    PubMed Central

    Eliasson, Bjorn; Smith, Ulf; Mullen, Shawn; Cushman, Samuel W; Sherman, Arthur S; Yang, Jian

    2014-01-01

    Early studies reported that the size of adipose cells positively correlates with insulin resistance, but recent evidence suggests that the relationship between adipose cell size and insulin resistance is more complex. We previously reported that among BMI-matched moderately obese subjects who were either insulin sensitive or resistant insulin resistance correlated with the proportion of small adipose cells, rather than the size of the large adipose cells, whereas the size of large adipose cells was found to be a predictor of insulin resistance in the first-degree relatives of type 2 diabetic (T2D) patients. The relationship between adipose cellularity and insulin resistance thus appears to depend on the metabolic state of the individual. We did a longitudinal study with T2D patients treated with the insulin-sensitizer rosiglitazone to test the hypothesis that improved insulin sensitivity is associated with increased adipocyte size. Eleven T2D patients were recruited and treated with rosiglitazone for 90 days. Blood samples and needle biopsies of abdominal subcutaneous fat were taken at six time points and analyzed for cell size distributions. Rosiglitazone treatment ameliorated insulin resistance as evidenced by significantly decreased fasting plasma glucose and increased index of insulin sensitivity, QUICKI. In association with this, we found significantly increased size of the large adipose cells and, with a weaker effect, increased proportion of small adipose cells. We conclude rosiglitazone treatment both enlarges existing large adipose cells and recruits new small adipose cells in T2D patients, improving fat storage capacity in adipose tissue and thus systemic insulin sensitivity. PMID:26317056

  3. Increased silver activity for direct propylene epoxidation via subnanometer size effects.

    SciTech Connect

    Lei, Y.; Mehmood, F.; Lee, S.; Greeley, J. P.; Lee, B.; Seifert, S.; Winans, R. E.; Elam, J. E.; Meyer, R. J.; Redfern, P. C.; Teschner, D.; Schlogl, R.; Pellin, M. J.; Curtiss, L. A.; Vajda, S.; Univ. of Illinois at Chicago; Fritz-Haber Inst. der Max-Planck-Gesellschaft; Yale Univ.

    2010-04-09

    Production of the industrial chemical propylene oxide is energy-intensive and environmentally unfriendly. Catalysts based on bulk silver surfaces with direct propylene epoxidation by molecular oxygen have not resolved these problems because of substantial formation of carbon dioxide. We found that unpromoted, size-selected Ag{sub 3} clusters and {approx}3.5-nanometer Ag nanoparticles on alumina supports can catalyze this reaction with only a negligible amount of carbon dioxide formation and with high activity at low temperatures. Density functional calculations show that, relative to extended silver surfaces, oxidized silver trimers are more active and selective for epoxidation because of the open-shell nature of their electronic structure. The results suggest that new architectures based on ultrasmall silver particles may provide highly efficient catalysts for propylene epoxidation.

  4. Increased Silver Activity for Direct Propylene Epoxidation via Subnanometer Size Effects

    SciTech Connect

    Lei, Y.; Mehmood, Faisal; Lee, Sang Soo; Greeley, Jeffrey P.; Lee, Byeongdu; Seifert, Soenke; Winans, R. E.; Elam, J. W.; Meyer, R. J.; Redfern, Paul C.; Teschner, D.; Schlogl, Robert; Pellin, M. J.; Curtiss, Larry A.; Vajda, S.

    2010-04-09

    Production of the industrial chemical propylene oxide is energy-intensive and environmentally unfriendly. Catalysts based on bulk silver surfaces with direct propylene epoxidation by molecular oxygen have not resolved these problems because of substantial formation of carbon dioxide. We found that unpromoted, size-selected Ag3 clusters and ~3.5-nanometer Ag nanoparticles on alumina supports can catalyze this reaction with only a negligible amount of carbon dioxide formation and with high activity at low temperatures. Density functional calculations show that, relative to extended silver surfaces, oxidized silver trimers are more active and selective for epoxidation because of the open-shell nature of their electronic structure. The results suggest that new architectures based on ultrasmall silver particles may provide highly efficient catalysts for propylene epoxidation.

  5. Group heterogeneity increases the risks of large group size: a longitudinal study of productivity in research groups.

    PubMed

    Cummings, Jonathon N; Kiesler, Sara; Bosagh Zadeh, Reza; Balakrishnan, Aruna D

    2013-06-01

    Heterogeneous groups are valuable, but differences among members can weaken group identification. Weak group identification may be especially problematic in larger groups, which, in contrast with smaller groups, require more attention to motivating members and coordinating their tasks. We hypothesized that as groups increase in size, productivity would decrease with greater heterogeneity. We studied the longitudinal productivity of 549 research groups varying in disciplinary heterogeneity, institutional heterogeneity, and size. We examined their publication and citation productivity before their projects started and 5 to 9 years later. Larger groups were more productive than smaller groups, but their marginal productivity declined as their heterogeneity increased, either because their members belonged to more disciplines or to more institutions. These results provide evidence that group heterogeneity moderates the effects of group size, and they suggest that desirable diversity in groups may be better leveraged in smaller, more cohesive units.

  6. Increasing AIP Macrocycle Size Reveals Key Features of agr Activation in Staphylococcus aureus.

    PubMed

    Johnson, Jeffrey G; Wang, Boyuan; Debelouchina, Galia T; Novick, Richard P; Muir, Tom W

    2015-05-04

    The agr locus in the commensal human pathogen, Staphylococcus aureus, is a two-promoter regulon with allelic variability that produces a quorum-sensing circuit involved in regulating virulence within the bacterium. Secretion of unique autoinducing peptides (AIPs) and detection of their concentrations by AgrC, a transmembrane receptor histidine kinase, coordinates local bacterial population density with global changes in gene expression. The finding that staphylococcal virulence can be inhibited through antagonism of this quorum-sensing pathway has fueled tremendous interest in understanding the structure-activity relationships underlying the AIP-AgrC interaction. The defining structural feature of the AIP is a 16-membered, thiolactone-containing macrocycle. Surprisingly, the importance of ring size on agr activation or inhibition has not been explored. In this study, we address this deficiency through the synthesis and functional analysis of AIP analogues featuring enlarged and reduced macrocycles. Notably, this study is the first to interrogate AIP function by using both established cell-based reporter gene assays and newly developed in vitro AgrC-I binding and autophosphorylation activity assays. Based on our data, we present a model for robust agr activation involving a cooperative, three-points-of-contact interaction between the AIP macrocycle and AgrC.

  7. Subliminal Impending Collision Increases Perceived Object Size and Enhances Pupillary Light Reflex

    PubMed Central

    Chen, Lihong; Yuan, Xiangyong; Xu, Qian; Wang, Ying; Jiang, Yi

    2016-01-01

    Fast detection of ambient danger is crucial for the survival of biological entities. Previous studies have shown that threatening information can bias human visual perception and enhance physiological reactions. It remains to be delineated whether the modulation of threat on human perceptual and physiological responses can take place below awareness. To probe this issue, we adopted visual looming stimuli and created two levels of threat by varying their motion trajectories to the observers, such that the stimuli could move in a path that either collided with the observers’ heads or just nearly missed. We found that when the observers could not explicitly discriminate any difference between the collision and the near-miss stimuli, the visual stimuli on the collision course appeared larger and evoked greater pupil constrictions than those on the near-miss course. Furthermore, the magnitude of size overestimation was comparable to when the impending collision was consciously perceived. Our findings suggest that threatening information can bias human visual perception and strengthen pupil constrictions independent of conscious representation of the threat, and imply the existence of the subcortical visual pathway dedicated to automatically processing threat-related signals in humans. PMID:27994567

  8. Hindlimb muscle fibre size and glycogen stores in bank voles with increased aerobic exercise metabolism.

    PubMed

    Jaromin, Ewa; Wyszkowska, Julia; Labecka, Anna Maria; Sadowska, Edyta Teresa; Koteja, Paweł

    2016-02-01

    To test hypotheses concerning physiological factors limiting the rate of aerobic exercise metabolism, we used a unique experimental evolution model: lines of bank voles selected for high swim-induced aerobic metabolism (A) and unselected, control lines (C). We investigated putative adaptations that result in the increased performance of the hindlimb muscle (gastrocnemius joined with plantaris). The body mass-adjusted muscle mass was higher in A-lines (0.093 g) than in C-lines (0.083 g; P=0.01). However, selection did not affect mean muscle fibre cross-sectional area (P=0.34) or glycogen content assessed with a histochemical periodic acid-Schiff reaction (PAS; P=0.82). The results suggest that the increased aerobic performance is achieved by an increase of total muscle mass, without major qualitative changes in the muscle fibre architecture. However, such a conclusion should be treated with caution, because other modifications, such as increased density of capillaries or mitochondria, could occur.

  9. Investigating the Efficacy of a Preschool Vocabulary Intervention Designed to Increase Vocabulary Size and Conceptual Knowledge

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Dwyer, Julie C.

    2010-01-01

    This dissertation study investigated the efficacy of a supplementary preschool embedded multimedia curriculum that was designed to increase one type of conceptual knowledge: taxonomic categories. Named the World of Words (WOW), this curriculum focused on teaching the properties and concepts associated with seven taxonomic categories and providing…

  10. Did greater burial depth increase the seed size of domesticated legumes?

    PubMed

    Kluyver, Thomas A; Charles, Michael; Jones, Glynis; Rees, Mark; Osborne, Colin P

    2013-10-01

    The independent domestication of crop plants in several regions of the world formed the basis of human civilizations, and attracts considerable interest from archaeologists and biologists. Selection under cultivation led to a suite of domestication traits which distinguish crops from their wild progenitors, including larger seeds in most seed crops. This selection may be classified as 'conscious' or 'unconscious' selection according to whether humans were aware of the changes that they were driving. The hypothesis that human cultivation buried seeds deeper than natural dispersal, exerting unconscious selection favouring larger seeds with greater reserves, was tested. Using a comparative approach, accessions of eight grain legumes, originating from independent domestication centres across several continents, were sampled. Seeds were planted at different depths in a controlled environment, and seedling emergence scored for 5 weeks after sowing. Domestication in all species was associated with increased seed mass. In three species, greater mass was not correlated with increased ability to emerge from depth. In five species, emergence depth did correlate with mass, suggesting that selection during domestication may have acted on emergence depth. However, domestication only had a significant effect in two of these species (lentil and mung bean), and the increase in depth was no more than predicted by a cube-root allometric relationship with seed mass. The results do not support the hypothesis that burial under cultivation was a general selection mechanism for increased seed mass during the domestication of grain legumes, but it may have acted in particular species or regions.

  11. One Size Fits All: The Increasing Standardisation of English Teachers' Work in England

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Goodwyn, Andrew

    2012-01-01

    English teachers in England have experienced a lengthy period of external constraint, increasingly controlling their practice. This constraint was originated in the 1989 National curriculum. Although in its first version it was in harmony with practice, its numerous revisions have moved it a long way from teachers' own values and beliefs. This…

  12. Boron nitride-graphene nanocapacitor and the origins of anomalous size-dependent increase of capacitance.

    PubMed

    Shi, Gang; Hanlumyuang, Yuranan; Liu, Zheng; Gong, Yongji; Gao, Weilu; Li, Bo; Kono, Junichiro; Lou, Jun; Vajtai, Robert; Sharma, Pradeep; Ajayan, Pulickel M

    2014-01-01

    Conventional wisdom suggests that decreasing dimensions of dielectric materials (e.g., thickness of a film) should yield increasing capacitance. However, the quantum capacitance and the so-called "dead-layer" effect often conspire to decrease the capacitance of extremely small nanostructures, which is in sharp contrast to what is expected from classical electrostatics. Very recently, first-principles studies have predicted that a nanocapacitor made of graphene and hexagonal boron nitride (h-BN) films can achieve superior capacitor properties. In this work, we fabricate the thinnest possible nanocapacitor system, essentially consisting of only monolayer materials: h-BN with graphene electrodes. We experimentally demonstrate an increase of the h-BN films' permittivity in different stack structures combined with graphene. We find a significant increase in capacitance below a thickness of ∼5 nm, more than 100% of what is predicted by classical electrostatics. Detailed quantum mechanical calculations suggest that this anomalous increase in capacitance is due to the negative quantum capacitance that this particular materials system exhibits.

  13. Quantal density-functional theory of excited states: The state arbitrariness of the model noninteracting system

    SciTech Connect

    Slamet, Marlina; Singh, Ranbir; Sahni, Viraht; Massa, Lou

    2003-10-01

    The quantal density-functional theory (Q-DFT) of nondegenerate excited-states maps the pure state of the Schroedinger equation to one of noninteracting fermions such that the equivalent excited state density, energy, and ionization potential are obtained. The state of the model S system is arbitrary in that it may be in a ground or excited state. The potential energy of the model fermions differs as a function of this state. The contribution of correlations due to the Pauli exclusion principle and Coulomb repulsion to the potential and total energy of these fermions is independent of the state of the S system. The differences are solely a consequence of correlation-kinetic effects. Irrespective of the state of the S system, the highest occupied eigenvalue of the model fermions is the negative of the ionization potential. In this paper we demonstrate the state arbitrariness of the model system by application of Q-DFT to the first excited singlet state of the exactly solvable Hookean atom. We construct two model S systems: one in a singlet ground state (1s{sup 2}), and the other in a singlet first excited state (1s2s). In each case, the density and energy determined are equivalent to those of the excited state of the atom, with the highest occupied eigenvalues being the negative of the ionization potential. From these results we determine the corresponding Kohn-Sham density-functional theory (KS-DFT) 'exchange-correlation' potential energy for the two S systems. Further, based on the results of the model calculations, suggestions for the KS-DFT of excited states are made.

  14. Exploring the Relationship between Receptive and Productive Vocabulary Sizes and Their Increased Use by Azerbaijani English Majors

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Hajiyeva, Konul

    2015-01-01

    This article reports on the results of two studies on receptive and productive vocabulary knowledge of first-year English majors in an English-medium degree programme. The aim of the study is to answer these research questions: (1) to what extent do the receptive and productive vocabulary sizes of English majors increase after a year of…

  15. Genetic factors associated with population size may increase extinction risks and decrease colonization potential in a keystone tropical pine

    PubMed Central

    del Castillo, Rafael F; Trujillo-Argueta, Sonia; Sánchez-Vargas, Nahúm; Newton, Adrian C

    2011-01-01

    Pioneer species are essential for forest regeneration and ecosystem resilience. Pinus chiapensis is an endangered pioneer key species for tropical montane cloud forest regeneration in Mesoamerica. Human activities have severely reduced some P. chiapensis populations, which exhibited a small or null colonization potential suggesting the involvement of genetic factors associated with small populations. We explored the relationships between (i) population genetic diversity (allozymes) and population size, including sampling size effects, (ii) fitness estimates associated with colonization potential (seed viability and seedling performance) in a common environment and population size, and (iii) fitness estimates and observed heterozygosity in populations with sizes spanning five orders of magnitude. All the estimates of genetic diversity and fitness increased significantly with population size. Low fitness was detected in progenies of small populations of disturbed and undisturbed habitats. Progenies with the lowest observed heterozygosity displayed the lowest fitness estimates, which, in turn, increased with heterozygosity, but seed viability peaked at intermediate heterozygosity values suggesting inbreeding and outbreeding depression. Inbreeding depression appears to be the most immediate genetic factor in population decline. Conservation efforts should try to maintain large and genetically diverse populations, enhance gene flow by restoring connectivity between adjacent populations, and avoid genetically distant individuals. PMID:25568006

  16. The ectopic expression of the wheat Puroindoline genes increase germ size and seed oil content in transgenic corn.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Jinrui; Martin, John M; Beecher, Brian; Lu, Chaofu; Hannah, L Curtis; Wall, Michael L; Altosaar, Illimar; Giroux, Michael J

    2010-11-01

    Plant oil content and composition improvement is a major goal of plant breeding and biotechnology. The Puroindoline a and b (PINA and PINB) proteins together control whether wheat seeds are soft or hard textured and share a similar structure to that of plant non-specific lipid-transfer proteins. Here we transformed corn (Zea mays L.) with the wheat (Triticum aestivum L.) puroindoline genes (Pina and Pinb) to assess their effects upon seed oil content and quality. Pina and Pinb coding sequences were introduced into corn under the control of a corn Ubiquitin promoter. Three Pina/Pinb expression positive transgenic events were evaluated over two growing seasons. The results showed that Pin expression increased germ size significantly without negatively impacting seed size. Germ yield increased 33.8% while total seed oil content was increased by 25.23%. Seed oil content increases were primarily the result of increased germ size. This work indicates that higher oil content corn hybrids having increased food or feed value could be produced via puroindoline expression.

  17. Quantal release, incremental detection, and long-period Ca2+ oscillations in a model based on regulatory Ca2+-binding sites along the permeation pathway.

    PubMed Central

    Dupont, G; Swillens, S

    1996-01-01

    Quantal release, incremental detection, and oscillations are three types of Ca2+ responses that can be obtained in different conditions, after stimulation of the intracellular Ca2+ stores by submaximum concentrations of inositol 1,4,5-triphosphate (InsP3). All three phenomena are thought to occur through the regulatory properties of the InsP3 receptor/Ca2+ channel. In the present study, we perform further analysis of the model (Swillens et al., 1994, Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. USA. 91:10074-10078) previously proposed for transient InsP3-induced Ca2+ release, based on the bell-shaped dependence of the InsP3 receptor activity on the Ca2+ level and on the existence of an intermediate Ca2+ domain located around the mouth of the channel. We show that Ca2+ oscillations also arise in the latter model. Conditions for the occurrence of the various behaviors are investigated. Numerical simulations also show that the existence of an intermediate Ca2+ domain can markedly increase the period of oscillations. Periods on the order of 1 min can indeed be accounted for by the model when one assigns realistic values to the kinetic constants of the InsP3 receptor, which, in the absence of a domain, lead to oscillations with periods of a few seconds. Finally, theoretical support in favor of a positive cooperativity in the regulation of the InsP3 receptor by Ca2+ is presented. Images FIGURE 7 PMID:8889149

  18. Increase of Cloud Droplet Size with Aerosol Optical Depth: An Observational and Modeling Study

    SciTech Connect

    Yuan, Tianle; Li, Zhanqing; Zhang, Renyi; Fan, Jiwen

    2008-02-21

    Cloud droplet effective radius (DER) is generally negatively correlated with aerosol optical depth (AOD) as a proxy of cloud condensation nuclei. In this study, cases of positive correlation were found over certain portions of the world by analyzing the Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS) satellite products, together with a general finding that DER may increase or decrease with aerosol loading depending on environmental conditions. The slope of the correlation between DER and AOD is driven primarily by water vapor amount, which explains 70% of the variance in our study. Various potential artifacts that may cause the positive relation are investigated including water vapor swelling, partially cloudy, atmospheric dynamics, cloud three-dimensional (3-D) and surface influence effects. None seems to be the primary cause for the observed phenomenon, although a certain degree of influence exists for some of the factors. Analyses are conducted over seven regions around the world representing different types of aerosols and clouds. Only two regions show positive dependence of DER on AOD, near coasts of the Gulf of Mexico and South China Sea, which implies physical processes may at work. Using a 2-D spectral-bin microphysics Goddard Cumulus Ensemble model (GCE) which incorporated a reformulation of the Köhler theory, two possible physical mechanisms are hypothesized. They are related to the effects of slightly soluble organics (SSO) particles and giant CCNs. Model simulations show a positive correlation between DER and AOD, due to a decrease in activated aerosols with an increasing SSO content. Addition of a few giant CCNs also increases the DER. Further investigations are needed to fully understand and clarify the observed phenomenon.

  19. Increased Litter Size and Suckling Intensity Stimulate mRNA of RFamide-related Peptide in Rats

    PubMed Central

    Noroozi, Atefeh; Jafarzadeh Shirazi, Mohammad Reza; Tamadon, Amin; Moghadam, Ali; Niazi, Ali

    2015-01-01

    Background RFamide-related peptide-3 (RFRP-3) inhibits gonadotropin releasing hormone (GnRH) and luteinizing hormone (LH) secretion in rats. This study evaluates the effects of litter size and suckling intensity on RFRP mRNA expression in the dorsomedial hypothalamic nucleus (DMH) of rats. Materials and Methods A total of 32 pregnant and 4 non-lactating ovariectomized (control group) Sprague-Dawley rats were used in this experimental study. Lactating rats were allotted to 8 equal groups. In 3 groups, the litter size was adjusted to 5, 10, or 15 pups upon parturition. Dams were allowed to suckle their pups continuously until 8 days postpartum. In the other 3 groups, the litter size was adjusted to 5 pups following birth. These pups were separated from the dams for 6 hours on day 8 postpartum, after which the pups were allowed to suckle for 2.5, 5, or 7.5 minutes prior to killing the dams. In 2 groups, lactating rats with 10 and 15 pups were separated from their pups for 6 hours on day 8 postpartum. In these groups, the pups were allowed to suckle their dams for 5 minutes before the dams were killed. All rats were killed on day 8 postpartum and the DMH was removed from each rat. We evaluated RFRP mRNA expression using realtime polymerase chain reaction (PCR). Results The expression of RFRP mRNA in the DMH increased with increased litter size and suckling intensity compared to the controls. The effect of suckling intensity on the expression of RFRP mRNA was more pronounced compared to the litter size. Conclusion Increased litter size and suckling intensity stimulated RFRP mRNA expression in the DMH which might contribute to lactation anestrus in rats. PMID:26644862

  20. Alternative reproductive tactics increase effective population size and decrease inbreeding in wild Atlantic salmon

    PubMed Central

    Perrier, Charles; Normandeau, Éric; Dionne, Mélanie; Richard, Antoine; Bernatchez, Louis

    2014-01-01

    While nonanadromous males (stream-resident and/or mature male parr) contribute to reproduction in anadromous salmonids, little is known about their impacts on key population genetic parameters. Here, we evaluated the contribution of Atlantic salmon mature male parr to the effective number of breeders (Nb) using both demographic (variance in reproductive success) and genetic (linkage disequilibrium) methods, the number of alleles, and the relatedness among breeders. We used a recently published pedigree reconstruction of a wild anadromous Atlantic salmon population in which 2548 fry born in 2010 were assigned parentage to 144 anadromous female and 101 anadromous females that returned to the river to spawn in 2009 and to 462 mature male parr. Demographic and genetic methods revealed that mature male parr increased population Nb by 1.79 and 1.85 times, respectively. Moreover, mature male parr boosted the number of alleles found among progenies. Finally, mature male parr were in average less related to anadromous females than were anadromous males, likely because of asynchronous sexual maturation between mature male parr and anadromous fish of a given cohort. By increasing Nb and allelic richness, and by decreasing inbreeding, the reproductive contribution of mature male parr has important evolutionary and conservation implications for declining Atlantic salmon populations. PMID:25553070

  1. Testing for Depéret's Rule (Body Size Increase) in Mammals using Combined Extinct and Extant Data

    PubMed Central

    Bokma, Folmer; Godinot, Marc; Maridet, Olivier; Ladevèze, Sandrine; Costeur, Loïc; Solé, Floréal; Gheerbrant, Emmanuel; Peigné, Stéphane; Jacques, Florian; Laurin, Michel

    2016-01-01

    Whether or not evolutionary lineages in general show a tendency to increase in body size has often been discussed. This tendency has been dubbed “Cope's rule” but because Cope never hypothesized it, we suggest renaming it after Depéret, who formulated it clearly in 1907. Depéret's rule has traditionally been studied using fossil data, but more recently a number of studies have used present-day species. While several paleontological studies of Cenozoic placental mammals have found support for increasing body size, most studies of extant placentals have failed to detect such a trend. Here, we present a method to combine information from present-day species with fossil data in a Bayesian phylogenetic framework. We apply the method to body mass estimates of a large number of extant and extinct mammal species, and find strong support for Depéret's rule. The tendency for size increase appears to be driven not by evolution toward larger size in established species, but by processes related to the emergence of new species. Our analysis shows that complementary data from extant and extinct species can greatly improve inference of macroevolutionary processes. PMID:26508768

  2. International Airport Impacts to Air Quality: Size and Related Properties of Large Increases in Ultrafine Particle Number Concentrations.

    PubMed

    Hudda, N; Fruin, S A

    2016-04-05

    We measured particle size distributions and spatial patterns of particle number (PN) and particle surface area concentrations downwind from the Los Angeles International Airport (LAX) where large increases (over local background) in PN concentrations routinely extended 18 km downwind. These elevations were mostly comprised of ultrafine particles smaller than 40 nm. For a given downwind distance, the greatest increases in PN concentrations, along with the smallest mean sizes, were detected at locations under the landing jet trajectories. The smaller size of particles in the impacted area, as compared to the ambient urban aerosol, increased calculated lung deposition fractions to 0.7-0.8 from 0.5-0.7. A diffusion charging instrument (DiSCMini), that simulates alveolar lung deposition, measured a fivefold increase in alveolar-lung deposited surface area concentrations 2-3 km downwind from the airport (over local background), decreasing steadily to a twofold increase 18 km downwind. These ratios (elevated lung-deposited surface area over background) were lower than the corresponding ratios for elevated PN concentrations, which decreased from tenfold to twofold over the same distance, but the spatial patterns of elevated concentrations were similar. It appears that PN concentration can serve as a nonlinear proxy for lung deposited surface area downwind of major airports.

  3. Symbiotic bacteria contribute to increasing the population size of a freshwater crustacean, Daphnia magna.

    PubMed

    Peerakietkhajorn, Saranya; Tsukada, Koji; Kato, Yasuhiko; Matsuura, Tomoaki; Watanabe, Hajime

    2015-04-01

    The filter-feeding crustacean Daphnia is a key organism in freshwater ecosystems. Here, we report the effect of symbiotic bacteria on ecologically important life history traits, such as population dynamics and longevity, in Daphnia magna. By disinfection of the daphniid embryos with glutaraldehyde, aposymbiotic daphniids were prepared and cultured under bacteria-free conditions. Removal of bacteria from the daphniids was monitored by quantitative polymerase chain reaction for bacterial 16S rRNA gene. The population of aposymbiotic daphniids was reduced 10-folds compared with that of the control daphniids. Importantly, re-infection with symbiotic bacteria caused daphniids to regain bacteria and increase their fecundity to the level of the control daphniids, suggesting that symbiotic bacteria regulate Daphnia fecundity. To identify the species of symbiotic bacteria, 16S rRNA genes of bacteria in daphniids were sequenced. This revealed that 50% of sequences belonged to the Limnohabitans sp. of the Betaproteobacteria class and that the diversity of bacterial taxa was relatively low. These results suggested that symbiotic bacteria have a beneficial effect on D. magna, and that aposymbiotic Daphnia are useful tools in understanding the role of symbiotic bacteria in the environmental responses and evolution of their hosts.

  4. Anabolic steroids activate calcineurin-NFAT signaling and thereby increase myotube size and reduce denervation atrophy.

    PubMed

    Qin, Weiping; Pan, Jiangping; Wu, Yong; Bauman, William A; Cardozo, Christopher

    2015-01-05

    Anabolic androgens have been shown to reduce muscle loss due to immobilization, paralysis and many other medical conditions, but the molecular basis for these actions is poorly understood. We have recently demonstrated that nandrolone, a synthetic androgen, slows muscle atrophy after nerve transection associated with down-regulation of regulator of calcineurin 2 (RCAN2), a calcineurin inhibitor, suggesting a possible role of calcineurin-NFAT signaling. To test this possibility, rat gastrocnemius muscle was analyzed at 56 days after denervation. In denervated muscle, calcineurin activity declined and NFATc4 was excluded from the nucleus and these effects were reversed by nandrolone. Similarly, nandrolone increased calcineurin activity and nuclear NFATc4 levels in cultured L6 myotubes. Nandrolone also induced cell hypertrophy that was blocked by cyclosporin A or overexpression of RCAN2. Finally protection against denervation atrophy by nandrolone in rats was blocked by cyclosporin A. These results demonstrate for the first time that nandrolone activates calcineurin-NFAT signaling, and that such signaling is important in nandrolone-induced cell hypertrophy and protection against paralysis-induced muscle atrophy.

  5. Bed disturbance via foraging fish increases bedload transport during subsequent high flows and is controlled by fish size and species

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pledger, A. G.; Rice, S. P.; Millett, J.

    2016-01-01

    Benthic foraging by fish can modify the nature and rates of fine sediment accrual and the structure and topography of coarse-grained fluvial substrates, with the potential to alter bed material characteristics, particle entrainment thresholds, and bedload transport fluxes. However, knowledge of what controls the nature, extent, and intensity of benthic foraging and the consequent influence of these controls on geomorphic impact remain rudimentary. An ex-situ experiment utilising Barbel Barbus barbus and Chub Leuciscus cephalus extended previous work by considering the role of fish size and species as controls of sediment disturbance by foraging and the implications for bed material characteristics and bedload transport. In a laboratory flume, changes in bed microtopography and structure were measured when a water-worked bed of 5.6-22.6 mm gravels was exposed to four size classes of Barbel (4-5″, 5-6″, 6-8″, 8-10″ in length) and a single size class of Chub (8-10″). In line with other studies that have investigated animal size as a control of zoogeomorphic agency, increasing the size of Barbel had a significant effect on measured disturbance and transport metrics. Specifically, the area of disturbed substrate, foraging depth, and the fish's impact on microtopographic roughness and imbrication all increased as a function of fish size. In a comparison of the foraging effects of like-sized Barbel and Chub, 8-10″ in length, Barbel foraged a larger area of the test bed and had a greater impact on microtopographic roughness and sediment structure. Relative to water-worked beds that were not foraged, bed conditioning by both species was associated with increased bedload transport during the subsequent application of high flows. However, the bedload flux after foraging by Barbel, which is a specialist benthivore, was 150% higher than that following foraging by Chub, which feed opportunistically from the bed, and the total transported mass of sediment was 98

  6. Increased litter size and suckling intensity inhibit KiSS-1 mRNA expression in rat arcuate nucleus

    PubMed Central

    Noroozi, Atefeh; Shirazi, Mohammad Reza Jafarzadeh; Zamiri, Mohammad Javad; Tamadon, Amin; Akhlaghi, Amir; Tanideh, Nader; Niazi, Ali; Moghadam, Ali

    2014-01-01

    Objective(s): The effect of litter size and suckling intensity on the expression of KiSS-1 mRNA in the arcuate nucleus (ARC) of rats were evaluated. Materials and Methods: Thirty two pregnant and four non-lactating ovariectomized (as control group) rats were used in this experiment. Lactating rats were allotted to eight equal groups. In three groups, litter size was adjusted to 5, 10, or 15 pups upon parturition and allowed to suckle their pups continuously by 8 days postpartum. In the other three groups, litter size was adjusted to five upon birth; the pups were separated from the dams for 6 hr on day 8 postpartum, after which the pups were allowed to suckle their dams for 2.5, 5, or 7.5 min prior to killing the dams. Two groups of lactating rats with either 10 or 15 pups were separated from their pups for 6 hr on day 8 postpartum, after which the pups were allowed to suckle their dams for 5 min before the dams were killed on day 8 postpartum. The ARC was removed and the expression of KiSS-1 mRNA was evaluated, using real-time PCR. Results: The expression of KiSS-1 mRNA in the ARC was decreased as the litter size and intensity of suckling stimulus were increased. The effect of suckling intensity on the expression of KiSS-1 mRNA was more pronounced than that of litter size. Conclusion: Increased litter size and suckling intensity decreased KiSS-1 mRNA expression in the ARC which may contribute to lactation anestrus in rat. PMID:25422754

  7. Recovery of Aging-Related Size Increase of Skin Epithelial Cells: In vivo Mouse and In vitro Human Study

    PubMed Central

    Sokolov, Igor; Guz, Natali V.; Iyer, Swaminathan; Hewitt, Amy; Sokolov, Nina A.; Erlichman, Joseph S.; Woodworth, Craig D.

    2015-01-01

    The size increase of skin epithelial cells during aging is well-known. Here we demonstrate that treatment of aging cells with cytochalasin B substantially decreases cell size. This decrease was demonstrated on a mouse model and on human skin cells in vitro. Six nude mice were treated by topical application of cytochalasin B on skin of the dorsal left midsection for 140 days (the right side served as control for placebo treatment). An average decrease in cell size of 56±16% resulted. A reduction of cell size was also observed on primary human skin epithelial cells of different in vitro age (passages from 1 to 8). A cell strain obtained from a pool of 6 human subjects was treated with cytochalasin B in vitro for 12 hours. We observed a decrease in cell size that became statistically significant and reached 20–40% for cells of older passage (6–8 passages) whereas no substantial change was observed for younger cells. These results may be important for understanding the aging processes, and for cosmetic treatment of aging skin. PMID:25807526

  8. Awns reduce grain number to increase grain size and harvestable yield in irrigated and rainfed spring wheat

    PubMed Central

    Rebetzke, G. J.; Bonnett, D. G.; Reynolds, M. P.

    2016-01-01

    Genotypic variation in ear morphology is linked to differences in photosynthetic potential to influence grain yield in winter cereals. Awns contribute to photosynthesis, particularly under water-limited conditions when canopy assimilation is restricted. We assessed performance of up to 45 backcross-derived, awned–awnletted NILs representing four diverse genetic backgrounds in 25 irrigated or rainfed, and droughted environments in Australia and Mexico. Mean environment grain yields were wide-ranging (1.38–7.93 t ha−1) with vegetative and maturity biomass, plant height, anthesis date, spike number, and harvest index all similar (P >0.05) for awned and awnletted NILs. Overall, grain yields of awned–awnletted sister-NILs were equivalent, irrespective of yield potential and genetic background. Awnletted wheats produced significantly more grains per unit area (+4%) and per spike (+5%) reflecting more fertile spikelets and grains in tertiary florets. Increases in grain number were compensated for by significant reductions in grain size (–5%) and increased frequency (+0.8%) of small, shrivelled grains (‘screenings’) to reduce seed-lot quality of awnletted NILs. Post-anthesis canopies of awnletted NILs were marginally warmer over all environments (+0.27 °C) but were not different and were sometimes cooler than awned NILs at cooler air temperatures. Awns develop early and represented up to 40% of total spikelet biomass prior to ear emergence. We hypothesize that the allocation of assimilate to large and rapidly developing awns decreases spikelet number and floret fertility to reduce grain number, particularly in distal florets. Individual grain size is increased to reduce screenings and to increase test weight and milling quality, particularly in droughted environments. Despite the average reduction in grain size, awnless lines could be identified that combined higher grain yield with larger grain size, increased grain protein concentration, and reduced

  9. Increased Selection Response in Larger Populations. I. Selection for Wing-Tip Height in Drosophila Melanogaster at Three Population Sizes

    PubMed Central

    Weber, K. E.

    1990-01-01

    The effect of population size on selection response was investigated with replicated selection lines of 40, 200 and 1000 selected parents, using Drosophila melanogaster homozygous for the mutant raised. Selection for increased wing-tip height was carried out for 55 generations, with an average selection intensity of 0.6 standard deviation. The rank order of responses in the seven individual lines was significantly in order of population size, and the variance of response among lines showed a significant effect of population size. The final mean responses (selected - controls, +/- standard errors) in the three treatments, in order of increasing population size, were 8.6 +/- 1.8 mils (three small lines), 15.1 +/- 1.3 mils (two medium lines), and 19.8 +/- 1.5 mils (two large lines). The differences between treatments seem to have emerged too rapidly to be the result of mutations, and are probably due mainly to the utilization of existing variation with greater efficiency by selection in larger populations. PMID:2116358

  10. Rheotaxis performance increases with group size in a coupled phase model with sensory noise. The effects of noise and group size on rheotaxis

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chicoli, A.; Bak-Coleman, J.; Coombs, S.; Paley, D. A.

    2015-12-01

    Many fish exhibit rheotaxis, a behavior in which fish orient themselves relative to flow. Rheotaxis confers many benefits, including energetic cost savings and interception of drifting prey. Despite the fact that most species of fish school during at least some portion of their life, little is known about the importance of rheotactic behavior to schooling fish and, conversely, how the presence of nearby conspecifics affects rheotactic behavior. Understanding how rheotaxis is modified by social factors is thus of ecological importance. Here we present a mathematical model in the form of an all-to-all, coupled-oscillator framework over the non-Euclidean space of fish orientations to model group rheotactic behavior. Individuals in the model measure the orientation of their neighbors and the flow direction relative to their own orientation. These measures are corrupted by sensory noise. We study the effect of sensory noise and group size on internal (i.e., within the school) and external (i.e., with the flow) disagreement in orientation. We find that under noisy environmental conditions, increased group size improves rheotaxis. Results of this study have implications for understanding animal behavior, as well as for potential applications in bio-inspired engineering.

  11. Nutrient reserves may allow for genome size increase: evidence from comparison of geophytes and their sister non-geophytic relatives

    PubMed Central

    Veselý, Pavel; Bureš, Petr; Šmarda, Petr

    2013-01-01

    Background and Aims The genome size of an organism is determined by its capacity to tolerate genome expansion, given the species' life strategy and the limits of a particular environment, and the ability for retrotransposon suppression and/or removal. In some giant-genomed bulb geophytes, this tolerance is explained by their ability to pre-divide cells in the dormant stages or by the selective advantage of larger cells in the rapid growth of their fleshy body. In this study, a test shows that the tendency for genome size expansion is a more universal feature of geophytes, and is a subject in need of more general consideration. Methods Differences in monoploid genome sizes were compared using standardized phylogenetically independent contrasts in 47 sister pairs of geophytic and non-geophytic taxa sampled across all the angiosperms. The genome sizes of 96 species were adopted from the literature and 53 species were newly measured using flow cytometry with propidium iodide staining. Key Results The geophytes showed increased genome sizes compared with their non-geophytic relatives, regardless of the storage organ type and regardless of whether or not vernal geophytes, polyploids or annuals were included in the analyses. Conclusions The universal tendency of geophytes to possess a higher genome size suggests the presence of a universal mechanism allowing for genome expansion. It is assumed that this is primarily due to the nutrient and energetic independence of geophytes perhaps allowing continuous synthesis of DNA, which is known to proceed in the extreme cases of vernal geophytes even in dormant stages. This independence may also be assumed as a reason for allowing large genomes in some parasitic plants, as well as the nutrient limitation of small genomes of carnivorous plants. PMID:23960044

  12. Enhanced magnetic resonance imaging and staining of cancer cells using ferrimagnetic H-ferritin nanoparticles with increasing core size

    PubMed Central

    Cai, Yao; Cao, Changqian; He, Xiaoqing; Yang, Caiyun; Tian, Lanxiang; Zhu, Rixiang; Pan, Yongxin

    2015-01-01

    Purpose This study is to demonstrate the nanoscale size effect of ferrimagnetic H-ferritin (M-HFn) nanoparticles on magnetic properties, relaxivity, enzyme mimetic activities, and application in magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) and immunohistochemical staining of cancer cells. Materials and methods M-HFn nanoparticles with different sizes of magnetite cores in the range of 2.7–5.3 nm were synthesized through loading different amounts of iron into recombinant human H chain ferritin (HFn) shells. Core size, crystallinity, and magnetic properties of those M-HFn nanoparticles were analyzed by transmission electron microscope and low-temperature magnetic measurements. The MDA-MB-231 cancer cells were incubated with synthesized M-HFn nanoparticles for 24 hours in Dulbecco’s Modified Eagle’s Medium. In vitro MRI of cell pellets after M-HFn labeling was performed at 7 T. Iron uptake of cells was analyzed by Prussian blue staining and inductively coupled plasma mass spectrometry. Immunohistochemical staining by using the peroxidase-like activity of M-HFn nanoparticles was carried out on MDA-MB-231 tumor tissue paraffin sections. Results The saturation magnetization (Ms), relaxivity, and peroxidase-like activity of synthesized M-HFn nanoparticles were monotonously increased with the size of ferrimagnetic cores. The M-HFn nanoparticles with the largest core size of 5.3 nm exhibit the strongest saturation magnetization, the highest peroxidase activity in immunohistochemical staining, and the highest r2 of 321 mM−1 s−1, allowing to detect MDA-MB-231 breast cancer cells as low as 104 cells mL−1. Conclusion The magnetic properties, relaxivity, and peroxidase-like activity of M-HFn nanoparticles are size dependent, which indicates that M-HFn nanoparticles with larger magnetite core can significantly enhance performance in MRI and staining of cancer cells. PMID:25878496

  13. Founding weaver ant queens (Oecophylla longinoda) increase production and nanitic worker size when adopting non-nestmate pupae.

    PubMed

    Ouagoussounon, Issa; Offenberg, Joachim; Sinzogan, Antonio; Adandonon, Appolinaire; Kossou, Dansou; Vayssières, Jean-François

    2015-01-01

    Weaver ants (Oecophylla longinoda Latreille) are used commercially to control pest insects and for protein production. In this respect fast colony growth is desirable for managed colonies. Transplantation of non-nestmate pupae to incipient colonies has been shown to boost colony growth. Our objectives were to find the maximum number of pupae a founding queen can handle, and to measure the associated colony growth. Secondly, we tested if transplantation of pupae led to production of larger nanitic workers (defined as unusually small worker ants produced by founding queens in their first batch of offspring). Forty-five fertilized queens were divided into three treatments: 0 (control), 100 or 300 non-nestmate pupae transplanted to each colony. Pupae transplantation resulted in highly increased growth rates, as pupae were readily adopted by the queens and showed high proportions of surviving (mean = 76%). However, survival was significantly higher when 100 pupae were transplanted compared to transplantation of 300 pupae, indicating that queens were unable to handle 300 pupae adequately and that pupae require some amount of nursing. Nevertheless, within the 60-day experiment the transplantation of 300 pupae increased total colony size more than 10-fold whereas 100 pupae increased the size 5.6 fold, compared to control. This increase was due not only to the individuals added in the form of pupae but also to an increased per capita brood production by the resident queen, triggered by the adopted pupae. The size of hatching pupae produced by the resident queen also increased with the number of pupae transplanted, leading to larger nanitic workers in colonies adopting pupae. In conclusion, pupae transplantation may be used to produce larger colonies with larger worker ants and may thus reduce the time to produce weaver ant colonies for commercial purposes. This in turn may facilitate the implementation of the use of weaver ants.

  14. Trophic niche width increases with bill-size variation in a generalist passerine: a test of niche variation hypothesis.

    PubMed

    Hsu, Yu-Cheng; Shaner, Pei-Jen; Chang, Chun-I; Ke, Linhua; Kao, Shuh-Ji

    2014-03-01

    The niche variation hypothesis (NVH) predicts that populations with wider niches are phenotypically more variable than populations with narrower niches, which is frequently used to explain diversifying processes such as ecological release. However, not all empirical evidence supports the NVH. Furthermore, a relationship between population phenotypic variation and niche width can be caused by sexual selection or environmental gradients, which should be carefully considered along with competition in explaining niche variation. In this study, we used eight populations of a generalist passerine species, Paradoxornis webbianus (vinous-throated parrotbill), to test the NVH. We assessed evidence of ecological sexual dimorphism and environmental gradients in bill morphology of P. webbianus. A total of 170 P. webbianus from eight sites ranging 24-2668 m in altitude were included in this study. We used two principal components to quantify bill morphology: one describes bill size and the other describes bill slenderness. We used stable carbon and nitrogen isotope values of bird feathers to quantify trophic positions, and we estimated population trophic niche width using Bayesian standardized ellipse area. Paradoxornis webbianus with larger and more slender bills fed at higher trophic levels and population trophic niche width tended to increase with bill-size variation, supporting the NVH. The males had larger bills and marginally higher nitrogen isotope values than the females, suggesting ecological sexual dimorphism. Despite a positive correlation between bill size and wing length indicating sexual selection for larger male size, only three of the eight populations showed both male-biased bill size and male-biased wing length. Sexual dimorphism explained 13%-64% of bill-size variation across sites, suggesting its role in niche variation could vary greatly among populations. The variation in bill slenderness in P. webbianus increased with elevation. However, neither bill-size

  15. Enhanced Stomatal Conductance by a Spontaneous Arabidopsis Tetraploid, Me-0, Results from Increased Stomatal Size and Greater Stomatal Aperture.

    PubMed

    Monda, Keina; Araki, Hiromitsu; Kuhara, Satoru; Ishigaki, Genki; Akashi, Ryo; Negi, Juntaro; Kojima, Mikiko; Sakakibara, Hitoshi; Takahashi, Sho; Hashimoto-Sugimoto, Mimi; Goto, Nobuharu; Iba, Koh

    2016-03-01

    The rate of gas exchange in plants is regulated mainly by stomatal size and density. Generally, higher densities of smaller stomata are advantageous for gas exchange; however, it is unclear what the effect of an extraordinary change in stomatal size might have on a plant's gas-exchange capacity. We investigated the stomatal responses to CO2 concentration changes among 374 Arabidopsis (Arabidopsis thaliana) ecotypes and discovered that Mechtshausen (Me-0), a natural tetraploid ecotype, has significantly larger stomata and can achieve a high stomatal conductance. We surmised that the cause of the increased stomatal conductance is tetraploidization; however, the stomatal conductance of another tetraploid accession, tetraploid Columbia (Col), was not as high as that in Me-0. One difference between these two accessions was the size of their stomatal apertures. Analyses of abscisic acid sensitivity, ion balance, and gene expression profiles suggested that physiological or genetic factors restrict the stomatal opening in tetraploid Col but not in Me-0. Our results show that Me-0 overcomes the handicap of stomatal opening that is typical for tetraploids and achieves higher stomatal conductance compared with the closely related tetraploid Col on account of larger stomatal apertures. This study provides evidence for whether larger stomatal size in tetraploids of higher plants can improve stomatal conductance.

  16. Increase of larger-sized islets in C57/black mice during the long-term space flight.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Proshchina, Alexandra; Krivova, Yulia

    groups are of unequal size. The P-value was considered significant if less than 0.05. The islets in all three groups have a typical for murine pancreas architecture. The insulin-containing cells occupied the central position in pancreatic islets and the glucagon-containing cells were localized at the periphery. Histomorphometric analyses revealed significant increase of islets size in flight group compared with vivarium ground control. Moreover, the islets in group of the delayed synchronous ground control were significant larger then in group of vivarium control. No significant differences were found in islet size between flight and delayed synchronous ground control groups, but analyses indicated the increase of larger-sized islets in mice of flight group compared with synchronous control. Thus the mean islets size correlated with the body weight. The literature data indicates that similar changes are also observed in mice under conditions of an increased demand for insulin such as pregnancy, obesity, diabetes etc. According to the literature data, the researches of activity of pancreas have shown the increase of pancreatic hormones (insulin and C-peptide) in blood of astronauts in the early period after completion of space flights of various durations. In our study, the increase of islets size occurred not only in mice from flight group, but also in synchronous ground control. For this group, the live conditions imitated those of flight group without the factors of spaceflight such as microgravity. Therefore, we supposed that the hypokinesia play an important role in alteration of islets size. Thus, our data confirms the hypothesis of association microgravity and its experimental paradigms with manifestations similar to those of physical inactivity and diabetes.

  17. Increase of third-order nonlinear optical activity of PbS quantum dots in zeolite Y by increasing cation size.

    PubMed

    Kim, Hyun Sung; Yoon, Kyung Byung

    2012-02-08

    The third-order nonlinear optical (3NLO) activity of PbS quantum dots (QDs) encapsulated in zeolite Y has been expected to depend sensitively on the countercation of the zeolite host. However, ion exchange of the pristine countercation, H(+), with other cations has not been possible because the framework decomposes and the QDs aggregate immediately when the PbS QD-incorporating zeolite Y with H(+) as the countercation is exposed to the atmosphere. We now report that when H(+) is transformed to NH(4)(+), the framework of PbS QD-containing zeolite Y does not undergo decomposition and the PbS QDs do not undergo aggregation to form larger QDs during the aqueous ion exchange of NH(4)(+) with alkali-metal ions (M(A)(+) = Li, Na(+), K(+), Rb(+)). The 3NLO activity of the M(A)(+)-exchanged PbS QD-incorporating zeolite Y film increases with increasing size of M(A)(+). The stabilization of the surface-bound exciton by the electron-rich framework oxide and electron-poor cation is proposed to be responsible for the increase. This is the first example of a method for systematically increasing the 3NLO activity of QDs dispersed in a dielectric matrix by systematically changing its properties. These results will serve as a guideline for future research and also promote applications of QD-incorporating zeolites in various fields.

  18. Extracellular Ionic Composition Alters Kinetics of Vesicular Release of Catecholamines and Quantal Size During Exocytosis at Adrenal Medullary Cells

    DTIC Science & Technology

    1994-07-05

    cytosolic calcium concentration in single bovine adrenal chromaffin cells form video imaging of fura - 2 , EMBO J. 8, 401-411. Pollard, H. B., Ornberg, R...Key words: chromaffin cells, catecholamine, barium induced exocytosis, fura - 2 , calcium independent exocytosis Running title: Effects of extracellular...calibration of the fluorescent calcium indicator Fura - 2 , Cell Calcium 11, 75-83. Winkler, H. (1976) The Composition of Adrenal Chromaffin Granules

  19. Overexpression of microRNA OsmiR397 improves rice yield by increasing grain size and promoting panicle branching.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Yu-Chan; Yu, Yang; Wang, Cong-Ying; Li, Ze-Yuan; Liu, Qing; Xu, Jie; Liao, Jian-You; Wang, Xiao-Jing; Qu, Liang-Hu; Chen, Fan; Xin, Peiyong; Yan, Cunyu; Chu, Jinfang; Li, Hong-Qing; Chen, Yue-Qin

    2013-09-01

    Increasing grain yields is a major focus of crop breeders around the world. Here we report that overexpression of the rice microRNA (miRNA) OsmiR397, which is naturally highly expressed in young panicles and grains, enlarges grain size and promotes panicle branching, leading to an increase in overall grain yield of up to 25% in a field trial. To our knowledge, no previous report has shown a positive regulatory role of miRNA in the control of plant seed size and grain yield. We determined that OsmiR397 increases grain yield by downregulating its target, OsLAC, whose product is a laccase-like protein that we found to be involved in the sensitivity of plants to brassinosteroids. As miR397 is highly conserved across different species, our results suggest that manipulating miR397 may be useful for increasing grain yield not only in rice but also in other cereal crops.

  20. Quantal components of unitary EPSCs at the mossy fibre synapse on CA3 pyramidal cells of rat hippocampus.

    PubMed Central

    Jonas, P; Major, G; Sakmann, B

    1993-01-01

    2+), excluding failures, was 1 nS. Reducing the Ca2+ concentration and increasing the Mg2+ concentration reduced the mean peak amplitude in a concentration-dependent manner. 6. Peaks in EPSC peak amplitude distributions were apparent in low Ca2+ and high Mg2+. Using the criteria of equidistance and the presence of peaks and dips in the autocorrelation function, five of nine EPSC peak amplitude distributions were judged to be quantal.(ABSTRACT TRUNCATED AT 400 WORDS) Images Fig. 16 PMID:7908327

  1. Demographic population model for American shad: will access to additional habitat upstream of dams increase population sizes?

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Harris, Julianne E.; Hightower, Joseph E.

    2012-01-01

    American shad Alosa sapidissima are in decline in their native range, and modeling possible management scenarios could help guide their restoration. We developed a density-dependent, deterministic, stage-based matrix model to predict the population-level results of transporting American shad to suitable spawning habitat upstream of dams on the Roanoke River, North Carolina and Virginia. We used data on sonic-tagged adult American shad and oxytetracycline-marked American shad fry both above and below dams on the Roanoke River with information from other systems to estimate a starting population size and vital rates. We modeled the adult female population over 30 years under plausible scenarios of adult transport, effective fecundity (egg production), and survival of adults (i.e., to return to spawn the next year) and juveniles (from spawned egg to age 1). We also evaluated the potential effects of increased survival for adults and juveniles. The adult female population size in the Roanoke River was estimated to be 5,224. With no transport, the model predicted a slow population increase over the next 30 years. Predicted population increases were highest when survival was improved during the first year of life. Transport was predicted to benefit the population only if high rates of effective fecundity and juvenile survival could be achieved. Currently, transported adults and young are less likely to successfully out-migrate than individuals below the dams, and the estimated adult population size is much smaller than either of two assumed values of carrying capacity for the lower river; therefore, transport is not predicted to help restore the stock under present conditions. Research on survival rates, density-dependent processes, and the impacts of structures to increase out-migration success would improve evaluation of the potential benefits of access to additional spawning habitat for American shad.

  2. Does the invasive Lupinus polyphyllus increase pollinator visitation to a native herb through effects on pollinator population sizes?

    PubMed

    Jakobsson, Anna; Padrón, Benigno

    2014-01-01

    Invasive plants may compete with native species for abiotic factors as light, space and nutrients, and have also been shown to affect native pollination interactions. Studies have mainly focused on how invasive plants affect pollinator behaviour, i.e. attraction of pollinators to or away from native flowers. However, when an invasive plant provides resources utilized by native pollinators this could increase pollinator population sizes and thereby pollination success in natives. Effects mediated through changes in pollinator population sizes have been largely ignored in previous studies, and the dominance of negative interactions suggested by meta-analyses may therefore be biased. We investigated the impact of the invasive Lupinus polyphyllus on pollination in the native Lotus corniculatus using a study design comparing invaded and uninvaded sites before and after the flowering period of the invasive. We monitored wild bee abundance in transects, and visit rate and seed production of potted Lotus plants. Bumblebee abundance increased 3.9 times in invaded sites during the study period, whereas it was unaltered in uninvaded sites. Total visit rate per Lotus plant increased 2.1 times in invaded sites and decreased 4.4 times in uninvaded sites. No corresponding change in seed production of Lotus was found. The increase in visit rate to Lotus was driven by an increase in solitary bee visitation, whereas mainly bumblebees were observed to visit the invasive Lupinus. The mechanism by which the invasive increases pollinator visit rates to Lotus could be increased availability of other flower resources for solitary bees when bumblebees forage on Lupinus.

  3. Large and abundant flowers increase indirect costs of corollas: a study of coflowering sympatric Mediterranean species of contrasting flower size.

    PubMed

    Teixido, Alberto L; Valladares, Fernando

    2013-09-01

    Large floral displays receive more pollinator visits but involve higher production and maintenance costs. This can result in indirect costs which may negatively affect functions like reproductive output. In this study, we explored the relationship between floral display and indirect costs in two pairs of coflowering sympatric Mediterranean Cistus of contrasting flower size. We hypothesized that: (1) corolla production entails direct costs in dry mass, N and P, (2) corollas entail significant indirect costs in terms of fruit set and seed production, (3) indirect costs increase with floral display, (4) indirect costs are greater in larger-flowered sympatric species, and (5) local climatic conditions influence indirect costs. We compared fruit set and seed production of petal-removed flowers and unmanipulated control flowers and evaluated the influence of mean flower number and mean flower size on relative fruit and seed gain of petal-removed and control flowers. Fruit set and seed production were significantly higher in petal-removed flowers in all the studied species. A positive relationship was found between relative fruit gain and mean individual flower size within species. In one pair of species, fruit gain was higher in the large-flowered species, as was the correlation between fruit gain and mean number of open flowers. In the other pair, the correlation between fruit gain and mean flower size was also higher in the large-flowered species. These results reveal that Mediterranean environments impose significant constraints on floral display, counteracting advantages of large flowers from the pollination point of view with increased indirect costs of such flowers.

  4. On the evolutionary consequences of increasing litter size with multiple paternity in wild boar (Sus scrofa scrofa).

    PubMed

    Gayet, Thibault; Devillard, Sébastien; Gamelon, Marlène; Brandt, Serge; Say, Ludovic; Baubet, Eric

    2016-06-01

    Understanding how some species may be able to evolve quickly enough to deal with anthropogenic pressure is of prime interest in evolutionary biology, conservation, and management. Wild boar (Sus scrofa scrofa) populations keep growing all over Europe despite increasing hunting pressure. In wild boar populations subject to male-selective harvesting, the initially described polygynous mating system may switch to a promiscuous/polyandrous one. Such a change in the mating system, where potentially more males sire a litter at one reproductive event, may be associated with the retention of high genetic diversity and an increase of litter size. We tested these hypotheses by estimating the number of sires per litter based on a six-year long monitoring of a wild boar population subject to particularly high harvesting pressure. Our results show a high and stable genetic diversity and high rates of multiple paternity compared to other populations, thus depicting a promiscuous/polyandrous mating system in this population. We also show that litter size is positively linked to the number of sires, suggesting that multiple paternity increases fecundity. We finally discuss that multiple paternity may be one of the factors allowing rapid evolution of this population by maintaining both genetic and phenotypic diversity.

  5. The art of braking: Post saccadic oscillations in the eye tracker signal decrease with increasing saccade size.

    PubMed

    Hooge, Ignace; Nyström, Marcus; Cornelissen, Tim; Holmqvist, Kenneth

    2015-07-01

    Recent research has shown that the pupil signal from video-based eye trackers contains post saccadic oscillations (PSOs). These reflect pupil motion relative to the limbus (Nyström, Hooge, & Holmqvist, 2013). More knowledge about video-based eye tracker signals is essential to allow comparison between the findings obtained from modern systems, and those of older eye tracking technologies (e.g. coils and measurement of the Dual Purkinje Image-DPI). We investigated PSOs in horizontal and vertical saccades of different sizes with two high quality video eye trackers. PSOs were very similar within observers, but not between observers. PSO amplitude decreased with increasing saccade size, and this effect was even stronger in vertical saccades; PSOs were almost absent in large vertical saccades. Based on this observation we conclude that the occurrence of PSOs is related to deceleration at the end of a saccade. That PSOs are saccade size dependent and idiosyncratic is a problem for algorithmic determination of saccade endings. Careful description of the eye tracker, its signal, and the procedure used to extract saccades is required to enable researchers to compare data from different eye trackers.

  6. Per-capita Incidence of Sexually Transmitted Infections Increases Systematically with Urban Population Size: a cross-sectional study

    PubMed Central

    Patterson-Lomba, Oscar; Goldstein, Edward; Gómez-Liévano, Andrés; Castillo-Chavez, Carlos; Towers, Sherry

    2015-01-01

    Objectives Rampant urbanization rates across the globe demand that we improve our understanding of how infectious diseases spread in modern urban landscapes, where larger and more connected host populations enhance the thriving capacity of certain pathogens. Methods A data-driven approach is employed to study the ability of sexually transmitted diseases (STDs) to thrive in urban areas. The conduciveness of population size of urban areas and their socio-economic characteristics are used as predictors of disease incidence, using confirmed-case data on STDs in the United States as a case study. Results A superlinear relation between STD incidence and urban population size is found, even after controlling for various socio-economic aspects, suggesting that doubling the population size of a city results in an expected increase in STD incidence larger than twofold, provided that all other socio-economic aspects remain fixed. Additionally, the percentage of African Americans, income inequalities, education, and per capita income are found to have a significant impact on the incidence of each of the three STDs studied. Conclusions STDs disproportionally concentrate in larger cities. Hence, larger urban areas merit extra prevention and treatment efforts, especially in developing countries where urbanization rates are higher. PMID:25921021

  7. L1 insertion within SPEF2 gene is associated with increased litter size in the Finnish Yorkshire population.

    PubMed

    Sironen, A; Uimari, P; Iso-Touru, T; Vilkki, J

    2012-04-01

    Immotile, short-tail sperm defect (ISTS) expanded in the Finnish Yorkshire population in the end of 1990s. The causal mutation for this defect is a recent L1 insertion within the SPEF2 gene in chromosome 16. Even though all homozygous boars are eliminated from the population because of infertility, the amount of affected boars increased rapidly until marker-assisted selection against the defect was established. To elucidate the associated effects of the ISTS defect on production traits, we have investigated the association of the L1 insertion and PRLR haplotype with reproduction traits in the Finnish Yorkshire population. Two data sets including 357 sows and 491 AI-boars were genotyped for the presence of the L1 insertion and analysed for association with reproduction traits. A Proc Mixed procedure (SAS Inc) and a software package for analysing multivariate mixed models (DMU) were used to study the effect of polymorphisms on reproduction traits. The L1-insertion within SPEF2 gene was associated with litter size in the first parity. The SPEF2 gene is located adjacent to a candidate gene for litter size in the pig, PRLR. Haplotypes within PRLR exon 10 were analysed in data set of 93 AI-boars for the association with reproduction traits. However, no associations were detected within the analysed data set indicating that PRLR sequence variants are not the causal cause for the identified effect on litter size.

  8. Increased cholesterol 7α-hydroxylase expression and size of the bile acid pool in the lactating rat

    PubMed Central

    Wooton-Kee, Clavia Ruth; Cohen, David E.; Vore, Mary

    2008-01-01

    Maximal bile acid secretory rates and expression of bile acid transporters in liver and ileum are increased in lactation, possibly to facilitate increased enterohepatic recirculation of bile acids. We determined changes in the size and composition of the bile acid pool and key enzymes of the bile acid synthetic pathway [cholesterol 7α-hydroxylase (Cyp7a1), sterol 27-hydroxylase (Cyp27a1), and sterol 12α-hydroxylase (Cyp8b1)] in lactating rats relative to female virgin controls. The bile acid pool increased 1.9 to 2.5-fold [postpartum (PP) days 10, 14, and 19–23], compared with controls. A 1.5-fold increase in cholic acids and a 14 to 20% decrease in muricholic acids in lactation significantly increased the hydrophobicity index. In contrast, the hepatic concentration of bile acids and small heterodimer partner mRNA were unchanged in lactation. A 2.8-fold increase in Cyp7a1 mRNA expression at 16 h (10 h of light) demonstrated a shift in the diurnal rhythm at day 10 PP; Cyp7a1 protein expression and cholesterol 7α-hydroxylase activity were significantly increased at this time and remained elevated at day 14 PP but decreased to control levels by day 21 PP. There was an overall decrease in Cyp27a1 mRNA expression and a 20% decrease in Cyp27a1 protein expression, but there was no change in Cyp8b1 mRNA or protein expression at day 10 PP. The increase in Cyp7a1 expression PP provides a mechanism for the increase in the bile acid pool. PMID:18292185

  9. A tetraethylene glycol coat gives gold nanoparticles long in vivo half-lives with minimal increase in size

    PubMed Central

    Willett, Julian DS; Lawrence, Marlon G; Wilder, Jennifer C; Smithies, Oliver

    2017-01-01

    In this study, we describe the experiments determining whether coating gold nanoparticles with tetraethylene glycol (TEG) provides pharmacologically relevant advantages, such as increased serum half-life and resistance to protein adsorption. Monodisperse TEG-coated, NaBH4-reduced gold nanoparticles with a hydrodynamic size comparable to albumin were synthesized by reducing gold chloride with NaBH4 under alkaline conditions in the presence of TEG-SH. The particles were characterized by gel electrophoresis, column chromatography, and transmission electron microscopy. The nanoparticles were subsequently injected intravenously into mice, and their half-lives and final destinations were determined via photometric analysis, light microscopy (LM), and transmission electron microscopy. The TEG particles had a long half-life (~400 minutes) that was not influenced by splenectomy. After 500 minutes of injection, TEG particles were found in kidney proximal tubule cell vesicles and in spleen red and white pulp. The particles induced apoptosis in the spleen red pulp but not in white pulp or the kidney. Some of the TEG particles appeared to have undergone ligand exchange reactions that increased their charge. The TEG particles were shown to be resistant to nonspecific protein adsorption, as judged by gel electrophoresis and column chromatography. These results demonstrate that naturally monodisperse, small-sized gold nanoparticles coated with TEG have long in vivo plasma half-lives, are minimally toxic, and are resistant to protein adsorption. This suggests that a TEG coating should be considered as an alternative to a polyethylene glycol coating, which is polydisperse and of much larger size.

  10. MicroCT and microMRI imaging of a prenatal mouse model of increased brain size

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    López, Elisabeth K. N.; Stock, Stuart R.; Taketo, Makoto M.; Chenn, Anjen; Ravosa, Matthew J.

    2008-08-01

    There are surprisingly few experimental models of neural growth and cranial integration. This and the dearth of information regarding fetal brain development detract from a mechanistic understanding of cranial integration and its relevance to the patterning of skull form, specifically the role of encephalization on basicranial flexion. To address this shortcoming, our research uses transgenic mice expressing a stabilized form of β-catenin to isolate the effects of relative brain size on craniofacial development. These mice develop highly enlarged brains due to an increase in neural precursors, and differences between transgenic and wild-type mice are predicted to result solely from variation in brain size. Comparisons of wild-type and transgenic mice at several prenatal ages were performed using microCT (Scanco Medical MicroCT 40) and microMRI (Avance 600 WB MR spectrometer). Statistical analyses show that the larger brain of the transgenic mice is associated with a larger neurocranium and an altered basicranial morphology. However, body size and postcranial ossification do not seem to be affected by the transgene. Comparisons of the rate of postcranial and cranial ossification using microCT also point to an unexpected effect of neural growth on skull development: increased fetal encephalization may result in a compensatory decrease in the level of cranial ossification. Therefore, if other life history factors are held constant, the ontogeny of a metabolically costly structure such as a brain may occur at the expense of other cranial structures. These analyses indicate the benefits of a multifactorial approach to cranial integration using a mouse model.

  11. Increase in ceramide level after application of various sizes of sphingomyelin liposomes to a cultured human skin model.

    PubMed

    Tokudome, Y; Jinno, M; Todo, H; Kon, T; Sugibayashi, K; Hashimoto, F

    2011-01-01

    Sphingomyelin-based liposomes (SPM-L) that were sized (or not) by extrusion through a filter with pores of 100, 200, or 400 nm were applied to a three-dimensional cultured human skin model in order to evaluate which size of SPM-L was most effective at increasing its ceramide level. The diameters of the SPM-L in PBS were 102.7, 181.0, 224.0, and 380.1 nm. The diameters of the liposomes in the culture medium were 117.5, 199.2, 242.1, and 749.8 nm. The diameter of the small liposomes (<200 nm in diameter) did not change much, at least for 7 days. SPM-L in saline or culture medium were applied to the basal layer side or stratum corneum side of the cultured skin model, and ceramide II, III, V, and VI were then extracted from it. The extracted ceramide molecules were separated by HPTLC, and the concentration of each type of ceramide was quantified using a densitometer. When the small SPM-L (110 or 190 nm in diameter) were applied to the basal layer side, the levels of ceramide III and V were increased. When they were applied to the stratum corneum side, the levels of ceramide II, III, V, and VI were significantly increased compared to those of the PBS group, especially after the application of the small SPM-L (110 nm in diameter). Thus, the application of small SPM-L was useful for increasing the ceramide II, III, V, and VI levels of a cultured human skin model.

  12. Preharvest application of oxalic acid increased fruit size, bioactive compounds, and antioxidant capacity in sweet cherry cultivars (Prunus avium L.).

    PubMed

    Martínez-Esplá, Alejandra; Zapata, Pedro Javier; Valero, Daniel; García-Viguera, Cristina; Castillo, Salvador; Serrano, María

    2014-04-16

    Trees of 'Sweet Heart' and 'Sweet Late' sweet cherry cultivars (Prunus avium L.) were treated with oxalic acid (OA) at 0.5, 1.0, and 2.0 mM at 98, 112, and 126 days after full blossom. Results showed that all treatments increased fruit size at harvest, manifested by higher fruit volume and weight in cherries from treated trees than from controls, the higher effect being found with 2.0 mM OA (18 and 30% higher weight for 'Sweet Heart' and 'Sweet Late', respectively). Other quality parameters, such as color and firmness, were also increased by OA treatments, although no significant differences were found in total soluble solids or total acidity, showing that OA treatments did not affect the on-tree ripening process of sweet cherry. However, the increases in total anthocyanins, total phenolics, and antioxidant activity associated with the ripening process were higher in treated than in control cherries, leading to fruit with high bioactive compounds and antioxidant potential at commercial harvest (≅45% more anthocyanins and ≅20% more total phenolics). In addition, individual anthocyanins, flavonols, and chlorogenic acid derivatives were also increased by OA treatment. Thus, OA preharvest treatments could be an efficient and natural way to increase the quality and functional properties of sweet cherries.

  13. Selective-field-ionization dynamics of a lithium m=2 Rydberg state: Landau-Zener model versus quantal approach

    SciTech Connect

    Foerre, M.; Hansen, J.P.

    2003-05-01

    The selective-field-ionization (SFI) dynamics of a Rydberg state of lithium with magnetic quantum number m=2 is studied in detail based on two different theoretical models: (1) a close coupling integration of the Schroedinger equation and (2) the multichannel (incoherent) Landau-Zener (MLZ) model. The m=2 states are particularly interesting, since they define a border zone between fully adiabatic (m=0,1) and fully diabatic (m>2) ionization dynamics. Both sets of calculations are performed up to, and above, the classical ionization limit. It is found that the MLZ model is excellent in the description of the fully diabatic dynamics while certain discrepancies between the time dependent quantal amplitudes appear when the dynamics become involved. Thus, in this region, the analysis of experimental SFI spectra should be performed with care.

  14. Diabetes Increases Cryoinjury Size with Associated Effects on Cx43 Gap Junction Function and Phosphorylation in the Mouse Heart

    PubMed Central

    Palatinus, Joseph A.; Gourdie, Robert G.

    2016-01-01

    Diabetic patients develop larger myocardial infarctions and have an increased risk of death following a heart attack. The poor response to myocardial injury in the diabetic heart is likely related to the many metabolic derangements from diabetes that create a poor substrate in general for wound healing, response to injury and infection. Studies in rodents have implicated a role for the gap junction protein connexin 43 (Cx43) in regulating the injury response in diabetic skin wounds. In this study, we sought to determine whether diabetes alters Cx43 molecular interactions or intracellular communication in the cryoinjured STZ type I diabetic mouse heart. We found that epicardial cryoinjury size is increased in diabetic mice and this increase is prevented by preinjury insulin administration. Consistent with these findings, we found that intercellular coupling via gap junctions is decreased after insulin administration in diabetic and nondiabetic mice. This decrease in coupling is associated with a concomitant increase in phosphorylation of Cx43 at serine 368, a residue known to decrease channel conductance. Taken together, our results suggest that insulin regulates both gap junction-mediated intercellular communication and injury propagation in the mouse heart. PMID:27034963

  15. Extracellular protons reduce quantal content and prolong synaptic currents at the Drosophila larval neuromuscular junction.

    PubMed

    Sandstrom, David J

    2011-10-01

    Fluctuations in extracellular pH occur in the nervous system in response to a number of physiological and pathological processes, such as ischemia, hypercapnea, and high-frequency activity. Using the Drosophila larval neuromuscular junction, the author has examined acute effects of low and high pH on excitability and synaptic transmission. Acidification rapidly and reversibly reduces the size of electrically evoked excitatory junctional currents (EJCs) in a concentration-dependent manner, with transmission nearly abolished at pH 5.0. Conversely, raising pH to 7.8 increases EJC amplitude significantly. Further elevation to pH 8.5 causes an initial increase in amplitude, followed by profound, long-lasting depression of the synapse. Amplitudes of spontaneous miniature EJCs (mEJCs) are modestly, but significantly reduced at pH 5.0. It is therefore the number of quanta released per action potential, rather than the size of individual quanta, that is most strongly affected. Decay times of both EJCs and mEJCs are dramatically lengthened at low pH, suggesting that glutamate remains in the synaptic cleft for much longer than normal. Presynaptic excitability is also reduced, as indicated by increased latency between nerve shock and EJC onset. The response to low pH was not altered by mutations in genes encoding Transient Receptor Potential, Mucolipin subfamily (TRPML) and Slowpoke ion channels, which had previously been implicated as possible targets of extracellular protons. The author concludes that extracellular protons have strong effects on the release of glutamate and the time course of synaptic currents. These phenotypes can be exploited to study the mechanisms of acid-mediated changes in neuronal function, and to pursue the way in which pH modulates synaptic function in normal and pathophysiological conditions.

  16. Increasing the physical size and nucleation status of human pluripotent stem cell-derived ventricular cardiomyocytes by cell fusion.

    PubMed

    Kong, Chi-Wing; Chen, Shuxun; Geng, Lin; Shum, Angie Man-Yee; Sun, Dong; Li, Ronald A

    2017-03-01

    Human pluripotent stem cell-derived cardiomyocytes (hPSC-CMs) provide an unlimited source of donor cells for potential cardiac regenerative therapies. However, hPSC-CMs are immature. For instance, hPSC-CMs are only 1/10 of the physical size of their adult counterparts; the majority are mono- rather than bi- or multi-nucleated, which is an evolutionary adaptive feature in metabolically active cells such as adult CMs. Here, we attempted to increase the physical size and nucleation status of hPSC-derived ventricular (V) cardiomyocytes (hPSC-VCMs) using chemically-induced cell fusion, and examined the subsequent functional effects. Polyethylene glycol (PEG) was employed to fuse a 1:1 mixture of lentiviral vectors LV-MLC2v-GFP- or -tdTomato-labeled hPSC-VCMs, such that hPSC-VCMs fused syncytia (FS) were identified as doubly GFP(+)/tdTomato(+) multi-nucleated cells. These microscopically-identified FS were doubled in size as gauged by their capacitance when compared to the control mononucleated hPSC-VCMs using patch-clamp analysis. Reduced automaticity or action potential (AP) firing rate and moderately prolonged AP duration were observed in FS from day 6 post-fusion induction. However, Ca(2+) handling, mitochondrial biogenesis and the extent of apoptosis were not significantly altered. We conclude that larger, multi-nucleated hPSC-VCMs FS can be created by chemically-induced cell fusion but global maturation requires additional triggering cues.

  17. Increased Back-Bonding Explains Step-Edge Reactivity and Particle Size Effect for CO Activation on Ru Nanoparticles.

    PubMed

    Foppa, Lucas; Copéret, Christophe; Comas-Vives, Aleix

    2016-12-28

    Carbon monoxide is a ubiquitous molecule, a key feedstock and intermediate in chemical processes. Its adsorption and activation, typically carried out on metallic nanoparticles (NPs), are strongly dependent on the particle size. In particular, small NPs, which in principle contain more corner and step-edge atoms, are surprisingly less reactive than larger ones. Hereby, first-principles calculations on explicit Ru NP models (1-2 nm) show that both small and large NPs can present step-edge sites (e.g., B5 and B6 sites). However, such sites display strong particle-size-dependent reactivity because of very subtle differences in local chemical bonding. State-of-the-art crystal orbital Hamilton population analysis allows a detailed molecular orbital picture of adsorbed CO on step-edges, which can be classified as flat (η(1) coordination) and concave (η(2) coordination) sites. Our analysis shows that the CO π-metal dπ hybrid band responsible for the electron back-donation is better represented by an oxygen lone pair on flat sites, whereas it is delocalized on both C and O atoms on concave sites, increasing the back-bonding on these sites compared to flat step-edges or low-index surface sites. The bonding analysis also rationalizes why CO cleavage is easier on step-edge sites of large NPs compared to small ones irrespective of the site geometry. The lower reactivity of small NPs is due to the smaller extent of the Ru-O interaction in the η(2) adsorption mode, which destabilizes the η(2) transition-state structure for CO direct cleavage. Our findings provide a molecular understanding of the reactivity of CO on NPs, which is consistent with the observed particle size effect.

  18. The codA transgene for glycinebetaine synthesis increases the size of flowers and fruits in tomato.

    PubMed

    Park, Eung-Jun; Jeknić, Zoran; Jekncić, Zoran; Chen, Tony H H; Murata, Norio

    2007-05-01

    The tolerance of various species of plant to abiotic stress has been enhanced by genetic engineering with certain genes. However, the use of such transgenes is often associated with negative effects on growth and productivity under non-stress conditions. The codA gene from Arthrobacter globiformis is of particular interest with respect to the engineering of desirable productive traits in crop plants. The expression of this gene in tomato plants resulted in significantly enlarged flowers and fruits under non-stress conditions. The enlargement of flowers and fruits was associated with high levels of glycinebetaine that accumulated in reproductive organs, such as flower buds and fruits. The enlargement of flowers was related to an increase in the size and number of cells, and reflected the pleiotropic effect of the codA transgene on the expression of genes involved in the regulation of cell division.

  19. Increased muscle size and strength from slow-movement, low-intensity resistance exercise and tonic force generation.

    PubMed

    Watanabe, Yuya; Tanimoto, Michiya; Ohgane, Akane; Sanada, Kiyoshi; Miyachi, Motohiko; Ishii, Naokata

    2013-01-01

    The authors investigated the effects of low-intensity resistance training on muscle size and strength in older men and women. Thirty-five participants (age 59-76 yr) were randomly assigned to 2 groups and performed low-intensity (50% of 1-repetition maximum) knee-extension and -flexion exercises with either slow movement and tonic force generation (LST; 3-s eccentric, 3-s concentric, and 1-s isometric actions with no rest between repetitions) or normal speed (LN; 1-s concentric and 1-s eccentric actions with 1-s rests between repetitions) twice a week for 12 wk (2-wk preparation and 10-wk intervention). The LST significantly increased thigh-muscle thickness, as well as isometric knee-extension and -flexion strength. The LN significantly improved strength, but its hypertrophic effect was limited. These results indicate that even for older individuals, the LST can be an effective method for gaining muscle mass and strength.

  20. Increased anaplerosis of the tricarboxylic acid cycle decreased meal size and energy intake of cows in the postpartum period.

    PubMed

    Gualdrón-Duarte, Laura B; Allen, Michael S

    2017-03-22

    The objective of this study was to determine the effects of anaplerosis of the tricarboxylic acid cycle on feeding behavior and energy intake of cows in the postpartum period. We infused propionic acid (PA) and glycerol (GL) continuously into the abomasum and hypothesized that PA will decrease meal size and energy intake compared with GL because PA enters the tricarboxylic acid cycle, likely stimulating oxidation of acetyl CoA and satiety compared with GL. Three experiments (Exp.) were conducted using 20 Holstein cows between 3 and 22 d postpartum (8 cows in Exp. 1 and 6 cows each for Exp. 2 and 3). Treatments were compared using isoenergetic (Exp. 1, 193 kcal/h) and isomolar (Exp. 2, ∼0.5 mol/h) continuous infusions of PA (99.5%) and GL (99.7%) to the abomasum using a double crossover design with four 2-d infusion periods each, and 2 mol of PA or GL pulse-dosed to the abomasum using a crossover design (Exp. 3). Treatment sequences were assigned alternately to cows based upon date of parturition. Feeding behavior was recorded by a computerized data acquisition system for Exp. 1 and 2. Propionic acid decreased dry matter intake (DMI) compared with GL 16.7 and 23.4% in Exp. 1 and 2, respectively. The decrease in DMI was because PA decreased meal size compared with GL by 12.6 and 15.3% in Exp. 1 and 2, respectively. Propionic acid decreased total metabolizable energy intake (diet plus treatment infusions) compared with GL for both experiments. Compared with PA, GL increased plasma glucose and insulin concentrations for Exp. 2 only. In Exp. 3, PA decreased hepatic acetyl CoA content 34%, whereas GL increased hepatic acetyl CoA content 32%, resulting in lower hepatic acetyl CoA content for PA compared with GL at 30 min (18.0 vs. 36.9 nmol/g), which persisted at 60 min after dosing (21.9 vs. 32.8 nmol/g). Consistent with our hypothesis, the obligatory anaplerotic metabolite PA decreased meal size, DMI, and total metabolizable energy intake compared with GL, likely

  1. A natural antipredation experiment: predator control and reduced sea ice increases colony size in a long-lived duck.

    PubMed

    Hanssen, Sveinn A; Moe, Børge; Bårdsen, Bård-Jørgen; Hanssen, Frank; Gabrielsen, Geir W

    2013-09-01

    Anthropogenic impact on the environment and wildlife are multifaceted and far-reaching. On a smaller scale, controlling for predators has been increasing the yield from local natural prey resources. Globally, human-induced global warming is expected to impose severe negative effects on ecosystems, an effect that is expected to be even more pronounced in the scarcely populated northern latitudes. The clearest indication of a changing Arctic climate is an increase in both air and ocean temperatures leading to reduced sea ice distribution. Population viability is for long-lived species dependent on adult survival and recruitment. Predation is the main mortality cause in many bird populations, and egg predation is considered the main cause of reproductive failure in many birds. To assess the effect of predation and climate, we compared population time series from a natural experiment where a trapper/down collector has been licensed to actively protect breeding common eiders Somateria mollissima (a large seaduck) by shooting/chasing egg predators, with time series from another eider colony located within a nature reserve with no manipulation of egg predators. We found that actively limiting predator activity led to an increase in the population growth rate and carrying capacity with a factor of 3-4 compared to that found in the control population. We also found that population numbers were higher in years with reduced concentration of spring sea ice. We conclude that there was a large positive impact of human limitation of egg predators, and that this lead to higher population growth rate and a large increase in size of the breeding colony. We also report a positive effect of warming climate in the high arctic as reduced sea-ice concentrations was associated with higher numbers of breeding birds.

  2. Transgenic Tobacco Overexpressing Brassica juncea HMG-CoA Synthase 1 Shows Increased Plant Growth, Pod Size and Seed Yield

    PubMed Central

    Liao, Pan; Wang, Hui; Wang, Mingfu; Hsiao, An-Shan; Bach, Thomas J.; Chye, Mee-Len

    2014-01-01

    Seeds are very important not only in the life cycle of the plant but they represent food sources for man and animals. We report herein a mutant of 3-hydroxy-3-methylglutaryl-coenzyme A synthase (HMGS), the second enzyme in the mevalonate (MVA) pathway that can improve seed yield when overexpressed in a phylogenetically distant species. In Brassica juncea, the characterisation of four isogenes encoding HMGS has been previously reported. Enzyme kinetics on recombinant wild-type (wt) and mutant BjHMGS1 had revealed that S359A displayed a 10-fold higher enzyme activity. The overexpression of wt and mutant (S359A) BjHMGS1 in Arabidopsis had up-regulated several genes in sterol biosynthesis, increasing sterol content. To quickly assess the effects of BjHMGS1 overexpression in a phylogenetically more distant species beyond the Brassicaceae, wt and mutant (S359A) BjHMGS1 were expressed in tobacco (Nicotiana tabacum L. cv. Xanthi) of the family Solanaceae. New observations on tobacco OEs not previously reported for Arabidopsis OEs included: (i) phenotypic changes in enhanced plant growth, pod size and seed yield (more significant in OE-S359A than OE-wtBjHMGS1) in comparison to vector-transformed tobacco, (ii) higher NtSQS expression and sterol content in OE-S359A than OE-wtBjHMGS1 corresponding to greater increase in growth and seed yield, and (iii) induction of NtIPPI2 and NtGGPPS2 and downregulation of NtIPPI1, NtGGPPS1, NtGGPPS3 and NtGGPPS4. Resembling Arabidopsis HMGS-OEs, tobacco HMGS-OEs displayed an enhanced expression of NtHMGR1, NtSMT1-2, NtSMT2-1, NtSMT2-2 and NtCYP85A1. Overall, increased growth, pod size and seed yield in tobacco HMGS-OEs were attributed to the up-regulation of native NtHMGR1, NtIPPI2, NtSQS, NtSMT1-2, NtSMT2-1, NtSMT2-2 and NtCYP85A1. Hence, S359A has potential in agriculture not only in improving phytosterol content but also seed yield, which may be desirable in food crops. This work further demonstrates HMGS function in plant reproduction

  3. Closed head experimental traumatic brain injury increases size and bone volume of callus in mice with concomitant tibial fracture

    PubMed Central

    Brady, Rhys D; Grills, Brian L; Church, Jarrod E; Walsh, Nicole C; McDonald, Aaron C; Agoston, Denes V; Sun, Mujun; O’Brien, Terence J; Shultz, Sandy R; McDonald, Stuart J

    2016-01-01

    Concomitant traumatic brain injury (TBI) and long bone fracture are commonly observed in multitrauma and polytrauma. Despite clinical observations of enhanced bone healing in patients with TBI, the relationship between TBI and fracture healing remains poorly understood, with clinical data limited by the presence of several confounding variables. Here we developed a novel trauma model featuring closed-skull weight-drop TBI and concomitant tibial fracture in order to investigate the effect of TBI on fracture healing. Male mice were assigned into Fracture + Sham TBI (FX) or Fracture + TBI (MULTI) groups and sacrificed at 21 and 35 days post-injury for analysis of healing fractures by micro computed tomography (μCT) and histomorphometry. μCT analysis revealed calluses from MULTI mice had a greater bone and total tissue volume, and displayed higher mean polar moment of inertia when compared to calluses from FX mice at 21 days post-injury. Histomorphometric results demonstrated an increased amount of trabecular bone in MULTI calluses at 21 days post-injury. These findings indicate that closed head TBI results in calluses that are larger in size and have an increased bone volume, which is consistent with the notion that TBI induces the formation of a more robust callus. PMID:27682431

  4. Expected responses to different strategies of selection to increase heat tolerance assessed by changes in litter size in rabbit.

    PubMed

    Piles, M; Baselga, M; Sánchez, J P

    2014-10-01

    Response on litter size (LS) to selection based on EBV of the own trait and several indexes including EBV of 1 or more parameters of a reaction norm model (RNM) was evaluated by simulation. The RNM described animal's performance under different environmental temperatures assuming that this has an animal-specific effect on LS beyond an animal-specific temperature threshold (i.e., it had 3 parameters: intercept [Int], slope [Slp], and threshold [Thr]). Litter size data were generated assuming this model under 2 environmental conditions (comfort [CC] and comfort-to-heat [CtHC]). Variance components for Int, Slp, Thr, and LS were taken from literature. The initial base population consisted of 125 females and 25 males. Ten generations of selection were conducted keeping constant the population size. Eight different selection criteria were considered, depending on both the evaluation model and the index combining EBV for 1 or more parameters of the RNM. In 1 case selection was based on EBV of the own trait predicted by using a repeatability animal model. In the other 7 cases the genetic evaluation was conducted using the same model as that used in the simulation. For each scenario 25 replicates were conducted and response to selection was assessed within replicate as the difference between generations in the average of trait. Results indicate that, under the studied conditions and for the used genetic parameters, selection based on the observed trait seems to have the same effect as selection based on some index, including EBV of the RNM parameters. In addition, response to selection could be greater under CtHC rather than CC. Animals selected exclusively for EBV of the Slp and Thr are not expected to have good performance under CC. Under CtHC, selection for LS has a major response on those parameters, whereas response on Int was very small. Under CC, response to selection on LS is mainly determined by a change in Int, whereas Slp does not change and Thr slightly

  5. Disappearance of 19P/Borrelly's Silicate Feature in 2001 Apparition Is Attributed to Increase in Grain Size

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Wooden, D. H.; Woodward, C. E.; Harker, D. E.

    2002-01-01

    We report on observations and analysis of HIFOGS 10 microns spectrophotometry of short period comet 19P/Borrelly on 2003 October 13, 15 UT at the NASA IRTF. 19P/Borrelly is one of two short period comets, comet 4PIFaye being the other, to have a silicate feature detected. During Borrelly s perihelion passage in 1994 December, a silicate feature was present with a flux-to-continuum ratio of 0.25. Two apparitions later in 2003 October, the silicate feature is absent. Thermal emission modeling using amorphous olivine and amorphous carbon shows that a slight increase in grain size accounts for the disappearance of the silicate feature. Analysis of 19P/Borrelly suggests grain size, and not the absence of olivine minerals, may be responsible for the absence of silicate features in most short period comets. 19P/Borrelly is one of the more active short period comets. However, short period comets as a family are less active than long period comets. Short period comets probably originated in the Kuiper Belt and suffered collisions while in residence in the outer solar system. Upon evolution into orbits that take them through the inner solar system, the surfaces of short period comets are exposed to sunlight through their many perihelion passages. This is in contrast to long period comets which probably originated near Jupiter and were expelled to the Oort cloud where they have existed and been exposed to cosmic ray processing. By studying the grain properties in short period comets and comparing to long period comets, we compare the effects on the grain populations of different parent body evolution histories. Upcoming opportunities to study short and long period comets will be advertised.

  6. Disappearance of 19P/Borrelly's Silicate Feature in 2001 Apparition Is Attributed to Increase in Grain Size

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wooden, D. H.; Woodward, C. E.; Harker, D. E.

    2003-05-01

    We report on observations and analysis of HIFOGS 10 \\micron \\ spectrophotometry of short period comet 19P/Borrelly on 2003 October 13, 15 UT at the NASA IRTF. 19P/Borrelly is one of two short period comets, comet 4P/Faye being the other, to have a silicate feature detected (Hanner et al. 1996, Icarus, 124, 344). During Borrelly.s perihelion passage in 1994 December, a silicate feature was present with a flux-to-continuum ratio of 0.25. Two apparitions later in 2003 October, the silicate feature is absent. Thermal emission modeling (cf. Harker et al. 2002, ApJ, 580, 579) using amorphous olivine and amorphous carbon shows that a slight increase in grain size accounts for the disappearance of the silicate feature. Analysis of 19P/Borrelly suggests grain size, and not the absence of olivine minerals, may be responsible for the absence of silicate features in most short period comets. 19P/Borrelly is one of the more active short period comets. However, short period comets as a family are less active than long period comets. Short period comets probably originated in the Kuiper Belt and suffered collisions while in residence in the outer solar system. Upon evolution into orbits that take them through the inner solar system, the surfaces of short period comets are exposed to sunlight through their many perihelion passages. This is in contrast to long period comets which probably originated near Jupiter and were expelled to the Oort cloud where they have existed and been exposed to cosmic ray processing. By studying the grain properties in short period comets and comparing to long period comets, we compare the effects on the grain populations of different parent body evolution histories. Upcoming opportunities to study short and long period comets will be advertised. This research is supported in part by an NSF Grant to the University of Minnesota.

  7. Warring arthropod societies: Social spider colonies can delay annihilation by predatory ants via reduced apparency and increased group size.

    PubMed

    Keiser, Carl N; Wright, Colin M; Pruitt, Jonathan N

    2015-10-01

    Sociality provides individuals with benefits via collective foraging and anti-predator defense. One of the costs of living in large groups, however, is increased apparency to natural enemies. Here, we test how the individual-level and collective traits of spider societies can increase the risk of discovery and death by predatory ants. We transplanted colonies of the social spider Stegodyphus dumicola into a habitat dense with one of their top predators, the pugnacious ant Anoplolepis custodiens. With three different experiments, we test how colony-wide survivorship in a predator-dense habitat can be altered by colony apparency (i.e., the presence of a capture web), group size, and group composition (i.e., the proportion of bold and shy personality types present). We also test how spiders' social context (i.e., living solitarily vs. among conspecifics) modifies their behaviour toward ants in their capture web. Colonies with capture webs intact were discovered by predatory ants on average 25% faster than colonies with the capture web removed, and all discovered colonies eventually collapsed and succumbed to predation. However, the lag time from discovery by ants to colony collapse was greater for colonies containing more individuals. The composition of individual personality types in the group had no influence on survivorship. Spiders in a social group were more likely to approach ants caught in their web than were isolated spiders. Isolated spiders were more likely to attack a safe prey item (a moth) than they were to attack ants and were more likely to retreat from ants after contact than they were after contact with moths. Together, our data suggest that the physical structures produced by large animal societies can increase their apparency to natural enemies, though larger groups can facilitate a longer lag time between discovery and demise. Lastly, the interaction between spiders and predatory ants seems to depend on the social context in which spiders reside.

  8. Slip-weakening zone sizes at nucleation of catastrophic subaerial and submarine landslides by gradually increasing pore pressure

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Viesca, R. C.; Rice, J. R.

    2011-12-01

    We address the nucleation of dynamic landslide rupture in response to gradual pore pressure increases. Nucleation marks the onset of acceleration of the overlying slope mass due to the suddenly rapid enlargement of a sub-surface zone of shear failure, previously deforming quasi-statically. We model that zone as a planar surface undergoing initially linear slip-weakening frictional failure within a bordering linear-elastic medium. The results are also relevant to earthquake nucleation. The sub-surface rupture zone considered runs parallel to the free surface of a uniform slope, under a 2D plane-strain deformation state. We show results for ruptures with friction coefficients following linear slip weakening (i.e., the residual friction is not yet reached). For spatially broad increases in pore pressure, the nucleation length depends on a ratio of depth to a cohesive zone length scale. In the very broad-increase limit, a direct numerical solution for nucleation lengths compares well with solutions to a corresponding eigenvalue problem (similar to Uenishi and Rice [JGR '03]), in which spatial variations in normal stress are neglected. We estimate nucleation lengths for subaerial and submarine conditions using data [e.g., Bishop et al., Géotech. '71; Stark et al., JGGE '05] from ring-shear tests on sediments (peak friction fp = 0.5, frictional slip-weakening rate within the range w = -df/d(slip) = 0.1/cm-1/cm). We assume that only pre-stresses, and not material properties, vary with depth. With such fp and w, we find for a range of subsurface depths and shear moduli μ that nucleation lengths are typically several hundred meters long for shallow undersea slopes, and up to an order of magnitude less for steeper slopes on the Earth's surface. In the submarine case, this puts nucleation lengths in a size range comparable to observed pore-pressure-generated seafloor disturbances as pockmarks [e.g., Gay et al., MG '06].

  9. Chronically Increased Amino Acids Improve Insulin Secretion, Pancreatic Vascularity, and Islet Size in Growth-Restricted Fetal Sheep.

    PubMed

    Brown, Laura D; Davis, Melissa; Wai, Sandra; Wesolowski, Stephanie R; Hay, William W; Limesand, Sean W; Rozance, Paul J

    2016-10-01

    Placental insufficiency is associated with reduced supply of amino acids to the fetus and leads to intrauterine growth restriction (IUGR). IUGR fetuses are characterized by lower glucose-stimulated insulin secretion, smaller pancreatic islets with less β-cells, and impaired pancreatic vascularity. To test whether supplemental amino acids infused into the IUGR fetus could improve these complications of IUGR we used acute (hours) and chronic (11 d) direct fetal amino acid infusions into a sheep model of placental insufficiency and IUGR near the end of gestation. IUGR fetuses had attenuated acute amino acid-stimulated insulin secretion compared with control fetuses. These results were confirmed in isolated IUGR pancreatic islets. After the chronic fetal amino acid infusion, fetal glucose-stimulated insulin secretion and islet size were restored to control values. These changes were associated with normalization of fetal pancreatic vascularity and higher fetal pancreatic vascular endothelial growth factor A protein concentrations. These results demonstrate that decreased fetal amino acid supply contributes to the pathogenesis of pancreatic islet defects in IUGR. Moreover, the results show that pancreatic islets in IUGR fetuses retain their ability to respond to increased amino acids near the end of gestation after chronic fetal growth restriction.

  10. Spermidine Suppresses Age-Associated Memory Impairment by Preventing Adverse Increase of Presynaptic Active Zone Size and Release

    PubMed Central

    Gupta, Varun K.; Pech, Ulrike; Fulterer, Andreas; Ender, Anatoli; Mauermann, Stephan F.; Andlauer, Till F. M.; Beuschel, Christine; Thriene, Kerstin; Quentin, Christine; Schwärzel, Martin; Mielke, Thorsten; Madeo, Frank; Dengjel, Joern; Fiala, André; Sigrist, Stephan J.

    2016-01-01

    Memories are assumed to be formed by sets of synapses changing their structural or functional performance. The efficacy of forming new memories declines with advancing age, but the synaptic changes underlying age-induced memory impairment remain poorly understood. Recently, we found spermidine feeding to specifically suppress age-dependent impairments in forming olfactory memories, providing a mean to search for synaptic changes involved in age-dependent memory impairment. Here, we show that a specific synaptic compartment, the presynaptic active zone (AZ), increases the size of its ultrastructural elaboration and releases significantly more synaptic vesicles with advancing age. These age-induced AZ changes, however, were fully suppressed by spermidine feeding. A genetically enforced enlargement of AZ scaffolds (four gene-copies of BRP) impaired memory formation in young animals. Thus, in the Drosophila nervous system, aging AZs seem to steer towards the upper limit of their operational range, limiting synaptic plasticity and contributing to impairment of memory formation. Spermidine feeding suppresses age-dependent memory impairment by counteracting these age-dependent changes directly at the synapse. PMID:27684064

  11. Brood size manipulations in a spatially and temporally varying environment: male Tengmalm's owls pass increased reproductive costs to offspring.

    PubMed

    Thomson, Robert L; Griesser, Michael; Laaksonen, Toni; Korpimäki, Erkki

    2014-10-01

    A key tool used to assess reproductive trade-offs in birds is brood size manipulation (BSM) experiments. Most BSM studies have examined the influence on short-term measures of reproductive output. Seldom evaluated are the effects on long-term fitness proxies under temporally or spatially varying environments. Unpredictable environments may affect reproductive trade-offs by altering the value of the brood or hampering optimization of reproductive effort. We reduced or enlarged broods of 140 male Tengmalm's owls Aegolius funereus by one chick during their first lifetime reproductive event. Males differed in age and bred in environments that varied in quality spatially (habitat structure) and temporally (abundance of main food). We measured the short-term (nestling number and condition) and long-term fitness proxies (survival, lifetime fledgling and recruits produced) until all experimental males disappeared from the population. BSMs did not affect fledgling number or condition, but in enlarged broods, offspring condition was lower in territories with a high proportion of agricultural fields. Importantly, no obvious impacts on long-term fitness proxies emerged; lifetime fledgling and recruit production of males did not differ between the BSM treatments. Thus, the primary caregiver (i.e. Tengmalm's owl males) passed increased reproductive costs to their offspring, which is in agreement with other studies investigating intergenerational reproductive trade-offs in species of intermediate lifespan. Reluctance to accept increased current reproductive costs in these systems highlights the potential for sexual conflict in bi-parental care systems in which one of the pair is the primary caregiver.

  12. Increasing the sample size at interim for a two-sample experiment without Type I error inflation.

    PubMed

    Dunnigan, Keith; King, Dennis W

    2010-01-01

    For the case of a one-sample experiment with known variance σ² =1, it has been shown that at interim analysis the sample size (SS) may be increased by any arbitrary amount provided: (1) The conditional power (CP) at interim is ≥ 50% and (2) there can be no decision to decrease the SS (stop the trial early). In this paper we verify this result for the case of a two-sample experiment with proportional SS in the treatment groups and an arbitrary common variance. Numerous authors have presented the formula for the CP at interim for a two-sample test with equal SS in the treatment groups and an arbitrary common variance, for both the one- and two-sided hypothesis tests. In this paper we derive the corresponding formula for the case of unequal, but proportional SS in the treatment groups for both one-sided superiority and two-sided hypothesis tests. Finally, we present an SAS macro for doing this calculation and provide a worked out hypothetical example. In discussion we note that this type of trial design trades the ability to stop early (for lack of efficacy) for the elimination of the Type I error penalty. The loss of early stopping requires that such a design employs a data monitoring committee, blinding of the sponsor to the interim calculations, and pre-planning of how much and under what conditions to increase the SS and that this all be formally written into an interim analysis plan before the start of the study.

  13. Stochastic, weighted hit size theory of cellular radiobiological action

    SciTech Connect

    Bond, V.P.; Varma, M.N.

    1982-01-01

    A stochastic theory that appears to account well for the observed responses of cell populations exposed in radiation fields of different qualities and for different durations of exposure is described. The theory appears to explain well most cellular radiobiological phenomena observed in at least autonomous cell systems, argues for the use of fluence rate (phi) instead of absorbed dose for quantification of the amount of radiation involved in low level radiation exposure. With or without invoking the cell sensitivity function, the conceptual improvement would be substantial. The approach suggested also shows that the absorbed dose-cell response functions currently employed do not reflect the spectrum of cell sensitivities to increasing cell doses of a single agent, nor can RBE represent the potency ratio for different agents that can produce similar quantal responses. Thus, for accurate comparison of cell sensitivities among different cells in the same individual, or between the cells in different kinds of individuals, it is necessary to quantify cell sensitivity in terms of the hit size weighting or cell sensitivity function introduced here. Similarly, this function should be employed to evaluate the relative potency of radiation and other radiomimetic chemical or physical agents.

  14. Deficient eNOS phosphorylation is a mechanism for diabetic vascular dysfunction contributing to increased stroke size

    PubMed Central

    Li, Qian; Atochin, Dmitriy; Kashiwagi, Satoshi; Earle, John; Wang, Annie; Mandeville, Emiri; Hayakawa, Kazuhide; d'Uscio, Livius V.; Lo, Eng H.; Katusic, Zvonimir; Sessa, William; Huang, Paul

    2013-01-01

    Background and Purpose Phosphorylation of eNOS, an important post-translational modulator of its enzymatic activity, is reduced in diabetes. We hypothesized that modulation of eNOS phosphorylation could overcome diabetic vascular dysfunction and improves the outcome to stroke. Methods We used the db/db mouse model of type 2 diabetes. We mated db/db mice with eNOS knockin mice that carry single-amino acid mutations at the S1176 phosphorylation site; the phosphomimetic SD mutation shows increased eNOS enzymatic activity, while the unphosphorylatable SA mutation shows decreased eNOS activity. We characterized the vascular anatomy, baseline physiologic parameters and vascular reactivity. We used the middle cerebral artery occlusion model of stroke and measured infarct volume and neurological deficits. Results db/db mice showed diminished eNOS phosphorylation at S1176. eNOS SD and SA mutations do not change the vascular anatomy at the Circle of Willis, brain capillary density, heart rate, or arterial blood gases of db/db mice. The eNOS SD mutation, but not the SA mutation, lowers blood pressure and improves vascular reactivity to acetylcholine in db/db mice. The eNOS SD mutation reduces stroke size and neurologic deficit following middle cerebral artery occlusion. Conclusion Diminished eNOS phosphorylation is a mechanism of vascular dysfunction in db/db mice. We show here that modulation of the eNOS S1176 phosphorylation site in db/db mice is associated with improved vascular reactivity and improved outcome to stroke following middle cerebral artery occlusion. PMID:23988642

  15. Significant Increase in Band Gap and Emission Efficiency of In2O3 Quantum Dots by Size-Tuning around 1 nm in Supermicroporous Silicas.

    PubMed

    Suzuki, Takafumi; Watanabe, Hiroto; Ueno, Taiki; Oaki, Yuya; Imai, Hiroaki

    2017-03-28

    The size of In2O3 quantum dots (QDs) is tuned from 0.57 to 1.80 nm by using supermicroporous silicas (SMPSs) as a template. The band gap energy and photoluminescence quantum yields of In2O3-QDs increase remarkably when their size is decreased below 1 nm.

  16. When larger brains do not have more neurons: increased numbers of cells are compensated by decreased average cell size across mouse individuals

    PubMed Central

    Herculano-Houzel, Suzana; Messeder, Débora J.; Fonseca-Azevedo, Karina; Pantoja, Nilma A.

    2015-01-01

    There is a strong trend toward increased brain size in mammalian evolution, with larger brains composed of more and larger neurons than smaller brains across species within each mammalian order. Does the evolution of increased numbers of brain neurons, and thus larger brain size, occur simply through the selection of individuals with more and larger neurons, and thus larger brains, within a population? That is, do individuals with larger brains also have more, and larger, neurons than individuals with smaller brains, such that allometric relationships across species are simply an extension of intraspecific scaling? Here we show that this is not the case across adult male mice of a similar age. Rather, increased numbers of neurons across individuals are accompanied by increased numbers of other cells and smaller average cell size of both types, in a trade-off that explains how increased brain mass does not necessarily ensue. Fundamental regulatory mechanisms thus must exist that tie numbers of neurons to numbers of other cells and to average cell size within individual brains. Finally, our results indicate that changes in brain size in evolution are not an extension of individual variation in numbers of neurons, but rather occur through step changes that must simultaneously increase numbers of neurons and cause cell size to increase, rather than decrease. PMID:26082686

  17. Quantal Study of the Exchange Reaction for N + N2 using an ab initio Potential Energy Surface

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Wang, Dunyou; Stallcop, James R.; Huo, Winifred M.; Dateo, Christopher E.; Schwenke, David W.; Partridge, Harry; Kwak, Dochan (Technical Monitor)

    2002-01-01

    The N + N2 exchange rate is calculated using a time-dependent quantum dynamics method on a newly determined ab initio potential energy surface (PES) for the ground A" state. This ab initio PES shows a double barrier feature in the interaction region with the barrier height at 47.2 kcal/mol, and a shallow well between these two barriers, with the minimum at 43.7 kcal/mol. A quantum dynamics wave packet calculation has been carried out using the fitted PES to compute the cumulative reaction probability for the exchange reaction of N + N2(J=O). The J - K shift method is then employed to obtain the rate constant for this reaction. The calculated rate constant is compared with experimental data and a recent quasi-classical calculation using a LEPS PES. Significant differences are found between the present and quasiclassical results. The present rate calculation is the first accurate 3D quantal dynamics study for N + N2 reaction system and the ab initio PES reported here is the first such surface for N3.

  18. Synaptophysin (p38) at the frog neuromuscular junction: its incorporation into the axolemma and recycling after intense quantal secretion

    PubMed Central

    1988-01-01

    Recycling of synaptophysin (p38), a synaptic vesicle integral membrane protein, was studied by the use of antisera raised against the protein purified from frog brain. When frog cutaneous pectoris muscles were fixed at rest, a bright, specific immunofluorescent signal was observed in nerve-terminal regions only if their plasma membranes had been previously permeabilized. When muscles were fixed after they had been treated for 1 h with a low dose of alpha-latrotoxin in Ca2+-free medium, an equally intense fluorescence could be observed without previous permeabilization. Under this condition, alpha-latrotoxin depletes nerve terminals of their quantal store of acetylcholine and of synaptic vesicles. These results indicate that fusion of synaptic vesicles leads to the exposure of intravesicular antigenic determinants of synaptophysin on the outer surface of the axolemma, and provide direct support for the vesicle hypothesis of neurotransmitter release. After 1 h treatment with the same dose of alpha-latrotoxin in the presence of 1.8 mM extracellular Ca2+, immunofluorescent images were obtained only after permeabilization with detergents. Under this condition, the vesicle population was maintained by an active process of recycling and more than two times the initial store of quanta were secreted. Thus, despite the active turnover of synaptic vesicles and of quanta of neurotransmitter, no extensive intermixing occurs between components of the vesicle and presynaptic plasma membrane. PMID:3144557

  19. A limit on the extent to which increased egg size can compensate for a poor postnatal environment revealed experimentally in the burying beetle, Nicrophorus vespilloides.

    PubMed

    Schrader, Matthew; Crosby, Rachel M; Hesketh, Aimee R; Jarrett, Benjamin J M; Kilner, Rebecca M

    2016-01-01

    It is often assumed that there is a positive relationship between egg size and offspring fitness. However, recent studies have suggested that egg size has a greater effect on offspring fitness in low-quality environments than in high-quality environments. Such observations suggest that mothers may compensate for poor posthatching environments by increasing egg size. In this paper we test whether there is a limit on the extent to which increased egg size can compensate for the removal of posthatching parental care in the burying beetle, Nicrophorus vespilloides. Previous experiments with N. vespilloides suggest that an increased egg size can compensate for a relatively poor environment after hatching. Here, we phenotypically engineered female N. vespilloides to produce large or small eggs by varying the amount of time they were allowed to feed on the carcass as larvae. We then tested whether differences between these groups in egg size translated into differences in larval performance in a harsh postnatal environment that excluded parental care. We found that females engineered to produce large eggs did not have higher breeding success, and nor did they produce larger larvae than females engineered to produce small eggs. These results suggest that there is a limit on the extent to which increased maternal investment in egg size can compensate for a poor posthatching environment. We discuss the implication of our results for a recent study showing that experimental N. vespilloides populations can adapt rapidly to the absence of posthatching parental care.

  20. Two-phase increase in the maximum size of life over 3.5 billion years reflects biological innovation and environmental opportunity

    PubMed Central

    Payne, Jonathan L.; Boyer, Alison G.; Brown, James H.; Finnegan, Seth; Kowalewski, Michał; Krause, Richard A.; Lyons, S. Kathleen; McClain, Craig R.; McShea, Daniel W.; Novack-Gottshall, Philip M.; Smith, Felisa A.; Stempien, Jennifer A.; Wang, Steve C.

    2009-01-01

    The maximum size of organisms has increased enormously since the initial appearance of life >3.5 billion years ago (Gya), but the pattern and timing of this size increase is poorly known. Consequently, controls underlying the size spectrum of the global biota have been difficult to evaluate. Our period-level compilation of the largest known fossil organisms demonstrates that maximum size increased by 16 orders of magnitude since life first appeared in the fossil record. The great majority of the increase is accounted for by 2 discrete steps of approximately equal magnitude: the first in the middle of the Paleoproterozoic Era (≈1.9 Gya) and the second during the late Neoproterozoic and early Paleozoic eras (0.6–0.45 Gya). Each size step required a major innovation in organismal complexity—first the eukaryotic cell and later eukaryotic multicellularity. These size steps coincide with, or slightly postdate, increases in the concentration of atmospheric oxygen, suggesting latent evolutionary potential was realized soon after environmental limitations were removed. PMID:19106296

  1. Increased WDR spontaneous activity and receptive field size in rats following a neuropathic or inflammatory injury: implications for mechanical sensitivity.

    PubMed

    Chu, Katharine L; Faltynek, Connie R; Jarvis, Michael F; McGaraughty, Steve

    2004-11-30

    Spontaneous activity and receptive field size for spinal wide dynamic range (WDR) neurons were measured and related to the mechanical allodynia in both neuropathic (L5-L6 ligation, 14 days post-injury) and complete Freund's adjuvant-inflamed rats (CFA, 2 days post-injury). The size of the WDR receptive field located on the hindpaw expanded significantly (p<0.01) following both modes of injury, with no difference between CFA and neuropathic animals. Likewise, the spontaneous firing of WDR neurons was significantly elevated following both the CFA (4.4+/-0.6 spikes/s, p<0.01) and neuropathic (3.2+/-0.3 spikes/s, p<0.05) injuries compared to naive (2.1+/-0.2 spikes/s) and sham-neuropathic (1.9+/-0.3 spikes/s) rats. Furthermore, the spontaneous WDR activity recorded from CFA rats was also significantly greater (p<0.05) than neuropathic rats. Mechanical allodynia, as measured by application of a von Frey hair stimulus, was observed from both CFA and neuropathic rats, however, the degree of sensitivity was significantly greater (p<0.01) for the CFA animals. These data suggest that the differences in mechanical sensitivity between CFA and neuropathic rats may be related to their respective changes in WDR spontaneous activity, but not to the changes in receptive field size, and is further demonstration of the importance of spontaneous WDR activity in determining mechanical sensitivity following injury.

  2. Spinal dorsal horn cell receptive field size is increased in adult rats following neonatal hindpaw skin injury.

    PubMed

    Torsney, Carole; Fitzgerald, Maria

    2003-07-01

    Local tissue damage in newborn rats can lead to changes in skin sensitivity that last into adulthood and this is likely to be due to plasticity of developing peripheral and central sensory connections. This study examines the functional connections of dorsal horn neurons in young and adult rats that have undergone local skin damage at birth. Newborn rat pups were halothane anaesthetised and received either a unilateral subcutaneous plantar injection of 1 % lambda-carrageenan or a unilateral plantar foot injury made by removal of 2 mm x 2 mm of skin. At 3 weeks, (postnatal day (P) 19-23) and 6 weeks (P40-44) in vivo extracellular recordings of single dorsal horn cells with plantar cutaneous receptive fields were made under urethane anaesthesia (2 g kg-1) and responses to mechanical and electrical stimulation of the skin were assessed. Following neonatal carrageenan inflammation, dorsal horn neuron properties and receptive field sizes at 3 weeks were the same as those of controls. In contrast, following neonatal skin injury, dorsal horn cell receptive field sizes were significantly greater than those of controls at 3 weeks (2.5-fold) and at 6 weeks (2.2-fold). Mechanical thresholds, mechanical response magnitudes and evoked responses to single and repeated A and C fibre stimulation remained unaffected. These results show that early skin injury can cause prolonged changes in central sensory connections that persist into adult life, long after the skin has healed. Enlarged dorsal horn neuron receptive field sizes provide a physiological mechanism for the persistent behavioural hypersensitivity that follows neonatal skin injury in rats and for the prolonged sensory changes reported in human infants after early pain and injury.

  3. An Asymmetric Increase in Inhibitory Synapse Number Underlies the Development of a Direction Selective Circuit in the Retina.

    PubMed

    Morrie, Ryan D; Feller, Marla B

    2015-06-24

    Neural circuits rely upon a precise wiring of their component neurons to perform meaningful computations. To compute the direction of motion in the visual scene, the direction selective circuit in the mouse retina depends on an asymmetry in the inhibitory neurotransmission from starburst amacrine cells (SACs) to direction selective ganglion cells (DSGCs). Specifically, depolarization of a SAC on the null side of a DSGC causes a threefold greater unitary inhibitory conductance than depolarization of a SAC on the preferred side. This asymmetry emerges during the second postnatal week of development, but its basis remains unknown. To determine the source of this asymmetry in inhibitory conductance, we conducted paired recordings between SACs and DSGCs at the beginning and end of the second postnatal week. We replaced calcium with strontium to promote asynchronous neurotransmitter release and produce quantal events. During the second postnatal week the quantal frequency but not the quantal amplitude of synaptic events increased more than threefold for null-side SAC-DSGC pairs but remained constant for preferred-side pairs. In addition, paired-pulse depression did not differ between SACs located on the null and preferred sides of DSGCs, indicating that all inhibitory SAC synapses onto a DSGC exhibit the same probability of release. Thus, the higher quantal frequency seen in null-side pairs results from a greater number of inhibitory synapses, revealing that an asymmetry in synapse number between SACs and DSGCs underlies the development of an essential component in the retina's direction selective circuit.

  4. Histomorphology of the bottlenose dolphin (Tursiops truncatus) pancreas and association of increasing islet β-cell size with chronic hypercholesterolemia.

    PubMed

    Colegrove, Kathleen M; Venn-Watson, Stephanie

    2015-04-01

    Bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus) can develop metabolic states mimicking prediabetes, including hyperinsulinemia, hyperlipidemia, elevated glucose, and fatty liver disease. Little is known, however, about dolphin pancreatic histomorphology. Distribution and area of islets, α, β, and δ cells were evaluated in pancreatic tissue from 22 dolphins (mean age 25.7years, range 0-51). Associations of these measurements were evaluated by sex, age, percent high glucose and lipids during the last year of life, and presence or absence of fatty liver disease and islet cell vacuolation. The most common pancreatic lesions identified were exocrine pancreas fibrosis (63.6%) and mild islet cell vacuolation (47.4%); there was no evidence of insulitis or amyloid deposition, changes commonly associated with type 2 diabetes. Dolphin islet architecture appears to be most similar to the pig, where α and β cells are localized to the central or periphery of the islet, respectively, or are well dispersed throughout the islet. Unlike pigs, large islets (greater than 10,000μm(2)) were common in dolphins, similar to that found in humans. A positive linear association was identified between dolphin age and islet area average, supporting a compensatory response similar to other species. The strongest finding in this study was a positive linear association between islet size, specifically β-cells, and percent blood samples with high cholesterol (greater than 280mg/dl, R(2)=0.57). This study is the most comprehensive assessment of the dolphin pancreas to date and may help direct future studies, including associations between chronic hypercholesterolemia and β-cell size.

  5. Periodic orbits of the Skyrmion breathing mode: Classical and quantal analysis

    SciTech Connect

    Abada, A.; Vautherin, D. )

    1992-10-01

    We construct the periodic classical orbits of the Skyrmion breathing mode by a perturbation expansion in the amplitude of the vibration. We first examine the lowest-order construction associated with linear response theory. We find that the monopole response function exhibits a sharp unbound peak which we identify to the Roper resonance {ital N}(1440). A calculation of second-order terms provides an evaluation of the anharmonic corrections. In a second part, we construct a collective Bohr-type Hamiltonian using the knowledge of periodic trajectories. This provides a natural requantization scheme with which we calculate the spectrum of monopole excitations of the Skyrmion. Finally we apply our results to the calculation of color transparency effects. We find that anharmonicities decrease significantly the time taken by a nucleon of small radius to regain its normal size. This effect should diminish the importance of the color transparency phenomenon.

  6. Heavy resistance training increases muscle size, strength and physical function in elderly male COPD-patients--a pilot study.

    PubMed

    Kongsgaard, M; Backer, V; Jørgensen, K; Kjaer, M; Beyer, N

    2004-10-01

    This study investigated the effects of heavy resistance training in elderly males with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD). 18 Home-dwelling male patients (age range: 65-80 years), with a mean forced expiratory volume in the first second (FEV1) of 46 +/- 3.4% of predicted value, were recruited. Baseline and post-training assessments included: Cross-sectional area (CSA) of quadriceps assessed by MRI, isometric and isokinetic knee extension strength, isometric trunk strength, leg extension power, normal and maximal gait-speed on a 30 m track, stair climbing time, number of chair stands in 30 s, lung function (FEV1) and self-reported health. Subjects were randomized to a resistance training group (RE, n = 9) or a control group conducting breathing exercises (CON, n = 9). RE performed heavy progressive resistance training twice a week for 12 weeks. 6 RE and 7 CON completed the study. In RE the following improved (P < 0.05): Quadriceps CSA: 4%, isometric knee extension strength: 14%, isokinetic knee extension strength at 60 degrees /s.: 18%, leg extension power: 19%, maximal gait speed: 14%, stair climbing time: 17%, isometric trunk flexion: 5% and self-reported health. In CON no changes were found. In conclusion, 12 weeks of heavy resistance training twice a week resulted in significant improvements in muscle size, knee extension strength, leg extension power, functional performance and self-reported health in elderly male COPD patients.

  7. Visible-light absorption in 2D covalent triazine framework: enhanced by interlayer coupling and pore size increasing

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Jiang, Xue; Zhao, Jijun; Dalian University of Technology Collaboration

    2014-03-01

    Compared with traditional bulk materials, two-dimensional (2D) crystals have some intrinsic advantages as photocatalysis owing to the limited thickness and large surface area. So far, many monolayer materials have been shown to be potential photocatalysis for water splitting from both theoretical calculations and experiments; while most of them are inorganic materials. In contrast, g-carbon nitride, as a starting successful case, motivates us to explore 2D organic semiconductors, which have not yet well investigated. Using first principles calculations, we predicted a family of 2D covalent triazine framework (CTF) as a promising visible-light-driven photocatalyst by studying their electronic structures, work function, CBM/VBM position, and optical absorption spectra. Moreover, we found that multilayer CTF have much better visible-light adsorption than a single layer induced by the interlayer coupling. In addition, controlled construction of such CTF from suitable organic subunit pave the way for connection between the optical energy gap of CTF and pore size. The insights from our study not only enrich the family of organic semiconductor photocatalyst, but also are very helpful in designing and assembling CTF subunits for optimal performance.

  8. T cells translate individual, quantal activation into collective, analog cytokine responses via time-integrated feedbacks

    PubMed Central

    Tkach, Karen E; Barik, Debashis; Voisinne, Guillaume; Malandro, Nicole; Hathorn, Matthew M; Cotari, Jesse W; Vogel, Robert; Merghoub, Taha; Wolchok, Jedd; Krichevsky, Oleg; Altan-Bonnet, Grégoire

    2014-01-01

    Variability within isogenic T cell populations yields heterogeneous ‘local’ signaling responses to shared antigenic stimuli, but responding clones may communicate ‘global’ antigen load through paracrine messengers, such as cytokines. Such coordination of individual cell responses within multicellular populations is critical for accurate collective reactions to shared environmental cues. However, cytokine production may saturate as a function of antigen input, or be dominated by the precursor frequency of antigen-specific T cells. Surprisingly, we found that T cells scale their collective output of IL-2 to total antigen input over a large dynamic range, independently of population size. Through experimental quantitation and computational modeling, we demonstrate that this scaling is enforced by an inhibitory cross-talk between antigen and IL-2 signaling, and a nonlinear acceleration of IL-2 secretion per cell. Our study reveals how time-integration of these regulatory loops within individual cell signaling generates scaled collective responses and can be leveraged for immune monitoring. DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.7554/eLife.01944.001 PMID:24719192

  9. Electromagnetic Transponders Indicate Prostate Size Increase Followed by Decrease During the Course of External Beam Radiation Therapy

    SciTech Connect

    King, Benjamin L.; Butler, Wayne M.; Merrick, Gregory S.; Kurko, Brian S.; Reed, Joshua L.; Murray, Brian C.; Wallner, Kent E.

    2011-04-01

    Purpose: Real-time image guidance enables more accurate radiation therapy by tracking target movement. This study used transponder positions to monitor changes in prostate volume that may be a source of dosimetric and target inaccuracy. Methods and Materials: Twenty-four men with biopsy-proven T1c-T3a prostate cancer each had three electromagnetic transponders implanted transperineally. Their coordinates were recorded by the Calypso system, and the perimeter of the triangle formed by the transponders was used to calculate prostate volumes at sequential time points throughout the course of radiation therapy to a dose of 81 Gy in 1.8-Gy fractions. Results: There was a significant decrease in mean prostate volume of 10.9% from the first to the final day of radiation therapy. The volume loss did not occur monotonically but increased in most patients (75%) during the first several weeks to a median maximum on Day 7. The volume increased by a mean of 6.1% before decreasing by a mean maximum difference of 18.4% to nadir (p < 0.001 for both increase and decrease). Glandular shrinkage was asymmetric, with the apex to right base dimension varying more than twice that of the lateral dimension. For all dimensions, the mean change was <0.5 cm. Conclusion: Real-time transponder positions indicated a volume increase during the initial days of radiation therapy and then significant and asymmetric shrinkage by the final day. Understanding and tracking volume fluctuations of the prostate during radiation therapy can help real-time imaging technology perform to its fullest potential.

  10. The effect of increasing the pore size of nanofibrous scaffolds on the osteogenic cell culture using a combination of sacrificial agent electrospinning and ultrasonication.

    PubMed

    Aghajanpoor, Mahdiyeh; Hashemi-Najafabadi, Sameereh; Baghaban-Eslaminejad, Mohamadreza; Bagheri, Fatemeh; Mohammad Mousavi, Seyyed; Azam Sayyahpour, Foruogh

    2017-03-03

    One of the major problems associated with the electrospun scaffolds is their small pore size, which limits the cellular infiltration for bone tissue engineering. In this study, the effect of increasing the pore size on cellular infiltration was studied in poly/nanohydroxyapatite electrospun scaffolds, which were modified using ultrasonication, co-electrospinning with poly (ethylene oxide), and a combination of both. Ultrasonic process was optimized by central composite design. The ultrasonic output power and time of the process were considered as the effective parameters. The pore size of the scaffolds was evaluated by scanning electron microscope. The optimum conditions, according to the pore area and mechanical properties of the scaffolds were selected, and finally the groups that had the highest pore size and mechanical strength were selected for the combined method. Increasing the pore size enhanced the cellular proliferation, extension and infiltration, as well as the osteodifferentiation of stem cells. At the optimum condition, the average cellular infiltration was 36.51 µm compared to the control group with no cellular infiltration. In addition, alkaline phosphatase activity and the expression of osteocalcin and collagen I (COL I) were, respectively, 1.86, 2.54, and 2.16 fold compared to the control group on day 14. © 2017 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. J Biomed Mater Res Part A, 2017.

  11. Increasing the recipient benefit/donor risk ratio by lowering the graft size requirement for living donor liver transplantation.

    PubMed

    Chan, See Ching; Fan, Sheung Tat; Chok, Kenneth S H; Sharr, William W; Dai, Wing Chiu; Fung, James Y Y; Chan, Kwok Yin; Balsarkar, Dharmesh J; Lo, Chung Mau

    2012-09-01

    In living donor liver transplantation (LDLT), a right liver graft is larger than a left liver graft and hence leads to better recipient survival. However, in comparison with donor left hepatectomy, donor right hepatectomy carries a higher donor risk. We estimated the expansion of the applicability of left liver living donor liver transplantation (LLDLT) by lowering the graft weight (GW)/standard liver volume (SLV) ratio in increments of 5%. Consecutive LDLT cases were included in this study. The results of computed tomography volumetry provided the graft volume measurements, and the GW was derived from the graft volume with the conversion factor of 1.19 mL/g. We tried to estimate how many more times LLDLT would have been feasible if the GW/SLV requirement had been lowered to 40%, 35%, 30%, or 25%. In all, 361 consecutive donor-recipient pairs underwent LDLT. Right liver living donor liver transplantation (RLDLT) accounted for 95% of the LDLT cases. Most recipients were male (74.2%), and most donors were female (60.4%). The median GW/SLV ratio was 46% (47% for RLDLT and 37% for LLDLT, P < 0.001). Two of the 218 female donors donated the left liver, and 12 of the 93 female recipients received a left liver. In 147 of the 173 cases (85%) when the donor was female and the recipient was male, the GW/SLV ratio did not reach 30%. LLDLT could have been performed more often than 5% of the time if a lower GW/SLV requirement had been adopted. With GW/SLV ratios ≥ 40%, ≥ 35%, ≥ 30%, and ≥ 25%, the proportion of LLDLT cases would have risen from 5% to 5.8%, 12.5%, 29.1%, and 62.3%, respectively. LLDLT could have been performed approximately twice as often with every 5% reduction of the GW/SLV requirement. In conclusion, lowering the graft size requirement could improve the applicability of LLDLT and hence reduce donor risk.

  12. Evidence for the role of non-quantal acetylcholine in the maintenance of the membrane potential of rat skeletal muscle

    PubMed Central

    Bray, J. J.; Forrest, J. W.; Hubbard, J. I.

    1982-01-01

    1. Resting membrane potentials of rat diaphragm muscles cultured in Trowell T8 medium were measured in vitro. After 3 hr in culture the resting membrane potential of muscle fibres within 2·5 mm of nerve section (`near') was -68·3 ± 0·4 mV (nineteen preparations). This was significantly lower (P < 0·001) than the resting potential (-74·0 ± 0·4 mV) measured in muscle fibres 8-10 mm from the site of nerve section (`far') in the same preparations. A difference between the `near' and the `far' fibres was maintained in muscles cultured for 6 and 12 hr. Miniature end-plate potentials were present in both `near' and `far' fibres cultured for 3 and 6 hr and ceased after 12-15 hr. 2. The presence of carbamylcholine (10-7 or 10-8 M) maintained the resting membrane potential of `near' fibres close to that of `far' fibres at 3, 6 and 12 hr. For example, at 3 hr in the presence of 10-8 M-carbamylcholine the mean resting potential was 75·6 ± 0·5 mV in `near' fibres and 76·1 ± 0·4 mV in `far' fibres (four preparations). A similar effect was produced in preparations exposed to anticholinesterases: diisopropylphosphorofluoridate (DFP) (10-7 M), neostigmine (10-7 M) or physostigmine (10-5 M). 3. Agents that blocked acetylcholine receptors had the reverse effect. In the presence of α-bungarotoxin (1 μg/ml.) or d-tubocurarine (10-5 M) the resting membrane potential of `far' fibres was reduced to the level of `near' fibres over the 24 hr period of observation. For example, at 3 hr in the presence of α-bungarotoxin the mean resting potential was 67·2 ± 0·5 mV in `near' fibres and 68·5 ± 0·6 mV in `far' fibres (six preparations). The effect of d-tubocurarine was reversible. 4. When muscles were cultured in Ca2+-free medium containing 1 mM-EGTA and 10 mM-Mg2+, there was no difference in membrane potential between `near' and `far' fibres and physostigmine (10-5 M) was ineffective in raising the membrane potential of `near' fibres. 5. It is suggested that non-quantal

  13. Increase in body size is correlated to warmer winters in a passerine bird as inferred from time series data.

    PubMed

    Björklund, Mats; Borras, Antoni; Cabrera, Josep; Senar, Juan Carlos

    2015-01-01

    Climate change is expected to affect natural populations in many ways. One way of getting an understanding of the effects of a changing climate is to analyze time series of natural populations. Therefore, we analyzed time series of 25 and 20 years, respectively, in two populations of the citril finch (Carduelis citrinella) to understand the background of a dramatic increase in wing length in this species over this period, ranging between 1.3 and 2.9 phenotypic standard deviations. We found that the increase in wing length is closely correlated to warmer winters and in one case to rain in relation to temperature in the summer. In order to understand the process of change, we implemented seven simulation models, ranging from two nonadaptive models (drift and sampling), and five adaptive models with selection and/or phenotypic plasticity involved and tested these models against the time series of males and females from the two population separately. The nonadaptive models were rejected in each case, but the results were mixed when it comes to the adaptive models. The difference in fit of the models was sometimes not significant indicating that the models were not different enough. In conclusion, the dramatic change in mean wing length can best be explained as an adaptive response to a changing climate.

  14. Synaptic vesicle exocytosis captured by quick freezing and correlated with quantal transmitter release

    PubMed Central

    1979-01-01

    We describe the design and operation of a machine that freezes biological tissues by contact with a cold metal block, which incorporates a timing circuit that stimulates frog neuromuscular junctions in the last few milliseconds before thay are frozen. We show freeze-fracture replicas of nerve terminals frozen during transmitter discharge, which display synpatic vesicles caught in the act of exocytosis. We use 4-aminopyridine (4-AP) to increase the number of transmitter quanta discharged with each nerve impulse, and show that the number of exocytotic vesicles caught by quick-freezing increases commensurately, indicating that one vesicle undergoes exocytosis for each quantum that is discharged. We perform statistical analyses on the spatial distribution of synaptic vesicle discharge sites along the "active zones" that mark the secretory regions of these nerves, and show that individual vesicles fuse with the plasma membrane independent of one another, as expected from physiological demonstrations that quanta are discharged independently. Thus, the utility of quick- freezing as a technique to capture biological processes as evanescent as synaptic transmission has been established. An appendix describes a new capacitance method to measure freezing rates, which shows that the "temporal resolution" of our quick-freezing technique is 2 ms or better. PMID:38256

  15. TP53 copy number expansion is associated with the evolution of increased body size and an enhanced DNA damage response in elephants.

    PubMed

    Sulak, Michael; Fong, Lindsey; Mika, Katelyn; Chigurupati, Sravanthi; Yon, Lisa; Mongan, Nigel P; Emes, Richard D; Lynch, Vincent J

    2016-09-19

    A major constraint on the evolution of large body sizes in animals is an increased risk of developing cancer. There is no correlation, however, between body size and cancer risk. This lack of correlation is often referred to as 'Peto's Paradox'. Here, we show that the elephant genome encodes 20 copies of the tumor suppressor gene TP53 and that the increase in TP53 copy number occurred coincident with the evolution of large body sizes, the evolution of extreme sensitivity to genotoxic stress, and a hyperactive TP53 signaling pathway in the elephant (Proboscidean) lineage. Furthermore, we show that several of the TP53 retrogenes (TP53RTGs) are transcribed and likely translated. While TP53RTGs do not appear to directly function as transcription factors, they do contribute to the enhanced sensitivity of elephant cells to DNA damage and the induction of apoptosis by regulating activity of the TP53 signaling pathway. These results suggest that an increase in the copy number of TP53 may have played a direct role in the evolution of very large body sizes and the resolution of Peto's paradox in Proboscideans.

  16. TP53 copy number expansion is associated with the evolution of increased body size and an enhanced DNA damage response in elephants

    PubMed Central

    Sulak, Michael; Fong, Lindsey; Mika, Katelyn; Chigurupati, Sravanthi; Yon, Lisa; Mongan, Nigel P; Emes, Richard D; Lynch, Vincent J

    2016-01-01

    A major constraint on the evolution of large body sizes in animals is an increased risk of developing cancer. There is no correlation, however, between body size and cancer risk. This lack of correlation is often referred to as 'Peto's Paradox'. Here, we show that the elephant genome encodes 20 copies of the tumor suppressor gene TP53 and that the increase in TP53 copy number occurred coincident with the evolution of large body sizes, the evolution of extreme sensitivity to genotoxic stress, and a hyperactive TP53 signaling pathway in the elephant (Proboscidean) lineage. Furthermore, we show that several of the TP53 retrogenes (TP53RTGs) are transcribed and likely translated. While TP53RTGs do not appear to directly function as transcription factors, they do contribute to the enhanced sensitivity of elephant cells to DNA damage and the induction of apoptosis by regulating activity of the TP53 signaling pathway. These results suggest that an increase in the copy number of TP53 may have played a direct role in the evolution of very large body sizes and the resolution of Peto's paradox in Proboscideans. DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.7554/eLife.11994.001 PMID:27642012

  17. Melatonin treatment of pre-veraison grape berries to increase size and synchronicity of berries and modify wine aroma components.

    PubMed

    Meng, Jiang-Fei; Xu, Teng-Fei; Song, Chang-Zheng; Yu, Yong; Hu, Fan; Zhang, Li; Zhang, Zhen-Wen; Xi, Zhu-Mei

    2015-10-15

    A comprehensive investigation was carried out to determine the effect of exogenous melatonin treatment of pre-veraison grapes on grape berries and its wines. Two melatonin treatments of pre-veraison grape berries increased the weight of the berries by approximately 6.6%. Meanwhile, this melatonin treatment could be beneficial in the reduction of underripe and overripe fruits and in enhancing the synchronicity of the berries. In addition, there were significant differences in the volatile compound composition between the wine produced from the melatonin-treated berries and the wines made from untreated berries. The wine from melatonin-treated pre-veraison grape berries had stronger fruity, spicy, and sweet sensory properties, compared to the wines made from untreated berries. Prolonging the treatment through repeated applications can enhance these effects and under different seasonal conditions, more pronounced effects on the grape quality and wine properties can be observed.

  18. Prenatal Exposure to Autism-Specific Maternal Autoantibodies Alters Proliferation of Cortical Neural Precursor Cells, Enlarges Brain, and Increases Neuronal Size in Adult Animals

    PubMed Central

    Martínez-Cerdeño, Verónica; Camacho, Jasmin; Fox, Elizabeth; Miller, Elaine; Ariza, Jeanelle; Kienzle, Devon; Plank, Kaela; Noctor, Stephen C.; Van de Water, Judy

    2016-01-01

    Autism spectrum disorders (ASDs) affect up to 1 in 68 children. Autism-specific autoantibodies directed against fetal brain proteins have been found exclusively in a subpopulation of mothers whose children were diagnosed with ASD or maternal autoantibody-related autism. We tested the impact of autoantibodies on brain development in mice by transferring human antigen-specific IgG directly into the cerebral ventricles of embryonic mice during cortical neurogenesis. We show that autoantibodies recognize radial glial cells during development. We also show that prenatal exposure to autism-specific maternal autoantibodies increased stem cell proliferation in the subventricular zone (SVZ) of the embryonic neocortex, increased adult brain size and weight, and increased the size of adult cortical neurons. We propose that prenatal exposure to autism-specific maternal autoantibodies directly affects radial glial cell development and presents a viable pathologic mechanism for the maternal autoantibody-related prenatal ASD risk factor. PMID:25535268

  19. Clutch size and egg volume in great tits (Parus major) increase under low intensity electromagnetic fields: a long-term field study.

    PubMed

    Tomás, Gustavo; Barba, Emilio; Merino, Santiago; Martínez, Javier

    2012-10-01

    Exposure to electromagnetic fields (EMFs) can affect a wide range of biological processes, including reproduction, growth and development. Experiments aimed at investigating the biological effects of EMFs, focused on potential harmful effects on humans, have been mostly carried out in vitro or with animal models in laboratory conditions. By contrast, studies performed on wild animals are scarce. The effects of EMFs created by an electric power line on reproductive traits of a wild great tit (Parus major) population were explored by analysing data gathered during nine breeding seasons. EMF exposure significantly increased clutch size (7%) and egg volume (3%), implying a 10% increase in clutch volume. This indicates an increase in reproductive investment from parent birds exposed to EMFs as compared to the adjacent reference area. These results cannot be attributed to habitat or adult quality differences between the exposed and reference group. Nevertheless, no differences in hatching success or final productivity (fledging and reproductive success or nestling body mass) could be detected. Our study clearly shows that EMFs created by power lines can have biological consequences in wild organisms that live intimately with them. To our knowledge, this is the first study showing an increase in clutch size, and one of the few reporting an increase in egg size, associated with EMF exposure. The possible mechanisms by which great tits invest more under EMF exposure are discussed, and future research directions to evaluate the effect of EMFs on avian reproduction in the wild are suggested.

  20. Intestinal and peritoneal mast cells differ in kinetics of quantal release.

    PubMed

    Balseiro-Gomez, Santiago; Ramirez-Ponce, M Pilar; Acosta, Jorge; Ales, Eva; Flores, Juan A

    2016-01-15

    5-hydroxytriptamine (5-HT, serotonin) storage and release in mast cell (MC) secretory granules (SG) are dependent on serglycin proteoglycans (PG). This notion is based on the studies of MC of the connective tissue subtype that predominantly contain PG of the heparin type, whereas intestinal mucosal MC, which contain predominantly chondroitin sulfate, have been poorly explored. In the present study, we addressed the possibility that PG contents may differently affect the storage and release of preformed mediators in these two MC subclasses and explain in part their different functional properties. Rat peritoneal (PMC) and intestinal mast cells (IMC) were isolated and purified using a percoll gradient, and the efflux of 5-HT from each SG was measured by amperometric detection. IMC exhibited a ∼34% reduction in the release of 5-HT compared with PMC because of a lower number of exocytotic events, rather than a lower secretion per single exocytotic event. Amperometric spikes from IMC exhibited a slower decay phase and increased half-width but a similar ascending phase and foot parameters, indicating that the fusion pore kinetics are comparable in both MC subclasses. We conclude that both PG subtypes are equally efficient systems, directly involved in serotonin accumulation, and play a crucial role in regulating the kinetics of exocytosis from SG, providing specific secretory properties for the two cellular subtypes.

  1. Random Photon Absorption Model Elucidates How Early Gain Control in Fly Photoreceptors Arises from Quantal Sampling

    PubMed Central

    Song, Zhuoyi; Zhou, Yu; Juusola, Mikko

    2016-01-01

    Many diurnal photoreceptors encode vast real-world light changes effectively, but how this performance originates from photon sampling is unclear. A 4-module biophysically-realistic fly photoreceptor model, in which information capture is limited by the number of its sampling units (microvilli) and their photon-hit recovery time (refractoriness), can accurately simulate real recordings and their information content. However, sublinear summation in quantum bump production (quantum-gain-nonlinearity) may also cause adaptation by reducing the bump/photon gain when multiple photons hit the same microvillus simultaneously. Here, we use a Random Photon Absorption Model (RandPAM), which is the 1st module of the 4-module fly photoreceptor model, to quantify the contribution of quantum-gain-nonlinearity in light adaptation. We show how quantum-gain-nonlinearity already results from photon sampling alone. In the extreme case, when two or more simultaneous photon-hits reduce to a single sublinear value, quantum-gain-nonlinearity is preset before the phototransduction reactions adapt the quantum bump waveform. However, the contribution of quantum-gain-nonlinearity in light adaptation depends upon the likelihood of multi-photon-hits, which is strictly determined by the number of microvilli and light intensity. Specifically, its contribution to light-adaptation is marginal (≤ 1%) in fly photoreceptors with many thousands of microvilli, because the probability of simultaneous multi-photon-hits on any one microvillus is low even during daylight conditions. However, in cells with fewer sampling units, the impact of quantum-gain-nonlinearity increases with brightening light. PMID:27445779

  2. Increasing the pore sizes of bone-mimetic electrospun scaffolds comprised of polycaprolactone, collagen I and hydroxyapatite to enhance cell infiltration

    PubMed Central

    Phipps, Matthew C.; Clem, William C.; Grunda, Jessica M.; Clines, Gregory A.; Bellis, Susan L.

    2012-01-01

    Bone-mimetic electrospun scaffolds consisting of polycaprolactone (PCL), collagen I and nanoparticulate hydroxyapatite (HA) have previously been shown to support the adhesion, integrin-related signaling and proliferation of mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs), suggesting these matrices serve as promising degradable substrates for osteoregeneration. However, the small pore sizes in electrospun scaffolds hinder cell infiltration in vitro and tissue-ingrowth into the scaffold in vivo, limiting their clinical potential. In this study, three separate techniques were evaluated for their capability to increase the pore size of the PCL/col I/nanoHA scaffolds: limited protease digestion, decreasing the fiber packing density during electro-spinning, and inclusion of sacrificial fibers of the water-soluble polymer PEO. The PEO sacrificial fiber approach was found to be the most effective in increasing scaffold pore size. Furthermore, the use of sacrificial fibers promoted increased MSC infiltration into the scaffolds, as well as greater infiltration of endogenous cells within bone upon placement of scaffolds within calvarial organ cultures. These collective findings support the use of sacrificial PEO fibers as a means to increase the porosity of complex, bone-mimicking electrospun scaffolds, thereby enhancing tissue regenerative processes that depend upon cell infiltration, such as vascularization and replacement of the scaffold with native bone tissue. PMID:22014462

  3. Similar increases in muscle size and strength in young men after training with maximal shortening or lengthening contractions when matched for total work.

    PubMed

    Moore, Daniel R; Young, Mark; Phillips, Stuart M

    2012-04-01

    Training exclusively with eccentric (lengthening) contractions can result in greater muscular adaptations than training with concentric (shortening) contractions. We aimed to determine whether training-induced increases in muscle size and strength differed between muscles performing maximal lengthening (LC) or maximal shortening (SC) contractions when total external work is equivalent. Nine healthy young males completed a 9-week isokinetic (0.79 rad/s) resistance training program of the elbow flexors whereby they performed LC with one arm and an equivalent volume of total external work with the contralateral arm as SC. Training increased isometric peak torque for both LC (~10%) and SC (~20%) with no difference (P = 0.14) between conditions. There were also similar increases in isokinetic peak torque at both slow (0.79 rad/s) and fast (5.24 rad/s) shortening and lengthening peak torque for both LC (~8-10%) and SC (~9-20%). Training increased work per repetition similarly for both LC (~17%) and SC (~22%), in spite of ~40% greater work per repetition with LC. The increase in muscle cross-sectional area with training was also similar (P = 0.37) between LC (~6.5%) and SC (~4.6%). We conclude that increases in muscle size and strength with short-term unilateral resistance training are unrelated to muscle contraction type when matched for both exercise intensity (i.e. maximal contractions) and total external work.

  4. The elusive quantal individual

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Groenewold, H. J.

    1985-10-01

    In the formal hedgehog representation of quantum mechanics [5] (ambiguous) weights are derived for hedgehogs with a finite number of questions and answers, in particular applied to spin {1}/{2} and to correlated spin {1}/{2} pairs. Unavoidable negative weights are a clear signal for conceptual difficulties in quantum mechanical interpretation. If these weights had been presupposed to be non-negative, they could have led to Bell-like inequalities inconsistent with quantum mechanics. This is what has happened already in various special models. Owing to the indefinite weights, the hedgehog hypothesis of one-to-one mapping between individual physical samples and individual fictitious hedgehogs cannot be maintained. If no physical interpretation is conceived for the negative weights, the only way to avoid unsolved conceptual difficulties appears to resign (even in the hedgehog representation) to the skeptical ensemble interpretation [1], without theorizing about individual physical samples at all.

  5. Dark respiration rate increases with plant size in saplings of three temperate tree species despite decreasing tissue nitrogen and nonstructural carbohydrates.

    PubMed

    Machado, José-Luis; Reich, Peter B

    2006-07-01

    In shaded environments, minimizing dark respiration during growth could be an important aspect of maintaining a positive whole-plant net carbon balance. Changes with plant size in both biomass distribution to different tissue types and mass-specific respiration rates (R(d)) of those tissues would have an impact on whole-plant respiration. In this paper, we evaluated size-related variation in R(d), biomass distribution, and nitrogen (N) and total nonstructural carbohydrate (TNC) concentrations of leaves, stems and roots of three cold-temperate tree species (Abies balsamea (L.) Mill, Acer rubrum L. and Pinus strobus L.) in a forest understory. We sampled individuals varying in age (6 to 24 years old) and in size (from 2 to 500 g dry mass), and growing across a range of irradiances (from 1 to 13% of full sun) in northern Minnesota, USA. Within each species, we found small changes in R(d), N and TNC when comparing plants growing across this range of light availability. Consistent with our hypotheses, as plants grew larger, whole-plant N and TNC concentrations in all species declined as a result of a combination of changes in tissue N and shifts in biomass distribution patterns. However, contrary to our hypotheses, whole-plant and tissue R(d) increased with plant size in the three species.

  6. Enhanced Stomatal Conductance by a Spontaneous Arabidopsis Tetraploid, Me-0, Results from Increased Stomatal Size and Greater Stomatal Aperture1[OPEN

    PubMed Central

    Monda, Keina; Araki, Hiromitsu; Kuhara, Satoru; Ishigaki, Genki; Akashi, Ryo; Negi, Juntaro; Kojima, Mikiko; Sakakibara, Hitoshi; Takahashi, Sho; Hashimoto-Sugimoto, Mimi; Goto, Nobuharu; Iba, Koh

    2016-01-01

    The rate of gas exchange in plants is regulated mainly by stomatal size and density. Generally, higher densities of smaller stomata are advantageous for gas exchange; however, it is unclear what the effect of an extraordinary change in stomatal size might have on a plant’s gas-exchange capacity. We investigated the stomatal responses to CO2 concentration changes among 374 Arabidopsis (Arabidopsis thaliana) ecotypes and discovered that Mechtshausen (Me-0), a natural tetraploid ecotype, has significantly larger stomata and can achieve a high stomatal conductance. We surmised that the cause of the increased stomatal conductance is tetraploidization; however, the stomatal conductance of another tetraploid accession, tetraploid Columbia (Col), was not as high as that in Me-0. One difference between these two accessions was the size of their stomatal apertures. Analyses of abscisic acid sensitivity, ion balance, and gene expression profiles suggested that physiological or genetic factors restrict the stomatal opening in tetraploid Col but not in Me-0. Our results show that Me-0 overcomes the handicap of stomatal opening that is typical for tetraploids and achieves higher stomatal conductance compared with the closely related tetraploid Col on account of larger stomatal apertures. This study provides evidence for whether larger stomatal size in tetraploids of higher plants can improve stomatal conductance. PMID:26754665

  7. Increased sedimentation rates and grain sizes 2-4 Myr ago due to the influence of climate change on erosion rates.

    PubMed

    Peizhen, Z; Molnar, P; Downs, W R

    2001-04-19

    Around the globe, and in a variety of settings including active and inactive mountain belts, increases in sedimentation rates as well as in grain sizes of sediments were recorded at approximately 2-4 Myr ago, implying increased erosion rates. A change in climate represents the only process that is globally synchronous and can potentially account for the widespread increase in erosion and sedimentation, but no single process-like a lowering of sea levels or expanded glaciation-can explain increases in sedimentation in all environments, encompassing continental margins and interiors, and tropical as well as higher latitudes. We suggest that climate affected erosion mainly by the transition from a period of climate stability, in which landscapes had attained equilibrium configurations, to a time of frequent and abrupt changes in temperature, precipitation and vegetation, which prevented fluvial and glacial systems from establishing equilibrium states.

  8. On the replication of Kristofferson's (1980) quantal timing for duration discrimination: some learning but no quanta and not much of a Weber constant.

    PubMed

    Matthews, William J; Grondin, Simon

    2012-07-01

    This study revisited Kristofferson's (Perception & Psychophysics 27:300-306, 1980) report showing that, with sufficient practice at interval discrimination, the relationship between timing variability and physical time is a step function-in other words, that psychological time is quantized. Two participants completed 260 sessions of a temporal discrimination task, 20 consecutive sessions for each of 13 base durations ranging from 100 to 1,480 ms. The data do not replicate Kristofferson's (Perception & Psychophysics 27:300-306, 1980) quantal finding, and it is argued that the effect Kristofferson reported may have been due to specific methodological decisions. Importantly, the data show (1) some limitation of Weber's law for time, even for the narrow range of the present investigation, and (2) that extensive training provides some modest benefit to temporal discrimination, mainly for longer intervals, and that this benefit primarily occurs in the first few sessions.

  9. Angiopoietin-2-induced blood-brain barrier compromise and increased stroke size are rescued by VE-PTP-dependent restoration of Tie2 signaling.

    PubMed

    Gurnik, Stefanie; Devraj, Kavi; Macas, Jadranka; Yamaji, Maiko; Starke, Julia; Scholz, Alexander; Sommer, Kathleen; Di Tacchio, Mariangela; Vutukuri, Rajkumar; Beck, Heike; Mittelbronn, Michel; Foerch, Christian; Pfeilschifter, Waltraud; Liebner, Stefan; Peters, Kevin G; Plate, Karl H; Reiss, Yvonne

    2016-05-01

    The homeostasis of the central nervous system is maintained by the blood-brain barrier (BBB). Angiopoietins (Ang-1/Ang-2) act as antagonizing molecules to regulate angiogenesis, vascular stability, vascular permeability and lymphatic integrity. However, the precise role of angiopoietin/Tie2 signaling at the BBB remains unclear. We investigated the influence of Ang-2 on BBB permeability in wild-type and gain-of-function (GOF) mice and demonstrated an increase in permeability by Ang-2, both in vitro and in vivo. Expression analysis of brain endothelial cells from Ang-2 GOF mice showed a downregulation of tight/adherens junction molecules and increased caveolin-1, a vesicular permeability-related molecule. Immunohistochemistry revealed reduced pericyte coverage in Ang-2 GOF mice that was supported by electron microscopy analyses, which demonstrated defective intra-endothelial junctions with increased vesicles and decreased/disrupted glycocalyx. These results demonstrate that Ang-2 mediates permeability via paracellular and transcellular routes. In patients suffering from stroke, a cerebrovascular disorder associated with BBB disruption, Ang-2 levels were upregulated. In mice, Ang-2 GOF resulted in increased infarct sizes and vessel permeability upon experimental stroke, implicating a role of Ang-2 in stroke pathophysiology. Increased permeability and stroke size were rescued by activation of Tie2 signaling using a vascular endothelial protein tyrosine phosphatase inhibitor and were independent of VE-cadherin phosphorylation. We thus identified Ang-2 as an endothelial cell-derived regulator of BBB permeability. We postulate that novel therapeutics targeting Tie2 signaling could be of potential use for opening the BBB for increased CNS drug delivery or tighten it in neurological disorders associated with cerebrovascular leakage and brain edema.

  10. Curd development associated gene (CDAG1) in cauliflower (Brassica oleracea L. var. botrytis) could result in enlarged organ size and increased biomass.

    PubMed

    Li, Hui; Liu, Qian; Zhang, Qingli; Qin, Erjun; Jin, Chuan; Wang, Yu; Wu, Mei; Shen, Guangshuang; Chen, Chengbin; Song, Wenqin; Wang, Chunguo

    2017-01-01

    The curd is a specialized organ and the most important product organ of cauliflower (Brassica oleracea L. var. botrytis). However, the mechanism underlying the regulation of curd formation and development remains largely unknown. In the present study, a novel homologous gene containing the Organ Size Related (OSR) domain, namely, CDAG1 (Curd Development Associated Gene 1) was identified in cauliflower. Quantitative analysis indicated that CDAG1 showed significantly higher transcript levels in young tissues. Functional analysis demonstrated that the ectopic overexpression of CDAG1 in Arabidopsis and cauliflower could significantly promote organ growth and result in larger organ size and increased biomass. Organ enlargement was predominantly due to increased cell number. In addition, 228 genes involved in the CDAG1-mediated regulatory network were discovered by transcriptome analysis. Among these genes, CDAG1 was confirmed to inhibit the transcriptional expression of the endogenous OSR genes, ARGOS and ARL, while a series of ethylene-responsive transcription factors (ERFs) were found to increased expression in 35S:CDAG1 transgenic Arabidopsis plants. This implies that CDAG1 may function in the ethylene-mediated signal pathway. These findings provide new insight into the function of OSR genes, and suggest potential applications of CDAG1 in breeding high-yielding crops.

  11. Deletion of p66Shc in mice increases the frequency of size-change mutations in the lacZ transgene.

    PubMed

    Beltrami, Elena; Ruggiero, Antonella; Busuttil, Rita; Migliaccio, Enrica; Pelicci, Pier Giuseppe; Vijg, Jan; Giorgio, Marco

    2013-04-01

    Upon oxidative challenge the genome accumulates adducts and breaks that activate the DNA damage response to repair, arrest, or eliminate the damaged cell. Thus, reactive oxygen species (ROS) generated by endogenous oxygen metabolism are thought to affect mutation frequency. However, few studies determined the mutation frequency when oxidative stress is reduced. To test whether in vivo spontaneous mutation frequency is altered in mice with reduced oxidative stress and cell death rate, we crossed p66Shc knockout (p66KO) mice, characterized by reduced intracellular concentration of ROS and by impaired apoptosis, with a transgenic line harboring multiple copies of the lacZ mutation reporter gene as part of a plasmid that can be recovered from organs into Escherichia coli to measure mutation rate. Liver and small intestine from 2- to 24-month-old, lacZ (p66Shc+/+) and lacZp66KO mice, were investigated revealing no difference in overall mutation frequency but a significant increase in the frequency of size-change mutations in the intestine of lacZp66KO mice. This difference was further increased upon irradiation of mice with X-ray. In addition, we found that knocking down cyclophilin D, a gene that facilitates mitochondrial apoptosis acting downstream of p66Shc, increased the size-change mutation frequency in small intestine. Size-change mutations also accumulated in death-resistant embryonic fibroblasts from lacZp66KO mice treated with H2 O2 . These results indicate that p66Shc plays a role in the accumulation of DNA rearrangements and suggest that p66Shc functions to clear damaged cells rather than affect DNA metabolism.

  12. Hydrogen Photoevolution Indicates an Increase in the Antenna Size of Photosystem I in Chlamydobotrys stellata during Transition from Autotrophic to Photoheterotrophic Nutrition.

    PubMed

    Boichenko, V A; Wiessner, W; Klimov, V V; Mende, D; Demeter, S

    1992-09-01

    The changes in the light-harvesting antenna size of photosystem I were investigated in the green alga Chlamydobotrys stellata during transition from autotrophic to photoheterotrophic nutrition by measuring the light-saturation behavior of hydrogen evolution following single turnover flashes. It was found that during autotrophic-to-photoheterotrophic transition the antenna size of photosystem I increased from 180 to 250 chlorophyll. The chlorophyll (a + b)/P700 ratio decreased from 800 to 550. The electron transport of photosystem I measured from reduced 2,6-dichloro-phenolindophenol to methylviologen was accelerated 1.4 times. In the 77K fluorescence spectra, the photosystem II fluorescence yield was considerably lowered relative to the photosystem I fluorescence yield. It is suggested that the increased light-harvesting capacity and redistribution of absorbed excitation energy in favor of photosystem I is a response of photoheterotrophic algae to meet the ATP demand for acetate metabolism by efficient photosystem I cyclic electron transport when the noncyclic photophosphorylation is inhibited by CO(2) deficiency.

  13. Concentration and size distribution of particulate oxalate in marine and coastal atmospheres - Implication for the increased importance of oxalate in nanometer atmospheric particles

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Guo, Tianfeng; Li, Kai; Zhu, Yujiao; Gao, Huiwang; Yao, Xiaohong

    2016-10-01

    In literature, particulate oxalate has been widely studied in the total suspended particles (TSP), particles <10 μm or 2.5 μm (PM10 and PM2.5) and size-segregated particles >100 nm. In this article, we measured oxalate's concentrations in size-segregated atmospheric particles down to 10 nm or 56 nm during eight campaigns performed at a semi-urban coastal site, over the marginal seas of China and from the marginal seas to the northwest Pacific Ocean (NWPO) in 2012-2015. When the sum of the oxalate's concentration in particles <10 μm was used for intercomparison, the lowest average values of 0.05-0.06 μg m-3 were observed during the two campaigns performed at NWPO. The highest average value of 0.38 μg m-3 was observed at the coastal site during a heavy pollution event. Mode analysis results of particulate oxalate and the correlation between oxalate and sulfate suggested that the elevated concentrations of oxalate in PM10 were mainly related to enhanced in-cloud formation of oxalate via anthropogenic precursors. Size distribution data in the total of 136 sets of samples also showed approximately 80% of particulate oxalate's mass existing in atmospheric particles >100 nm. Consistent with previous studies, particulate oxalate in particles >100 nm was a negligible ionic component when comparing to particulate SO42- in the same size range. However, the mole ratios of oxalate/sulfate in particles <100 nm were generally increased by 1-2 orders of magnitude. In approximately 30% of the samples, the mole ratios in atmospheric particles <56 nm were larger than 0.5. Moreover, during Campaign 5, the oxalate's concentrations in <56 nm particles were substantially increased on the days in presence of new particle formation events. These results strongly imply the importance of oxalate in nanometer atmospheric particles, but not in >100 nm atmospheric particles such as PM2.5, PM10, TSP, etc.

  14. Overexpression of a Hevea brasiliensis ErbB-3 Binding protein 1 Gene Increases Drought Tolerance and Organ Size in Arabidopsis.

    PubMed

    Cheng, Han; Chen, Xiang; Zhu, Jianshun; Huang, Huasun

    2016-01-01

    Rubber trees are economically important tropical tree species and the major source of natural rubber, which is an essential industrial material. This tropical perennial tree is susceptible to cold stress and other abiotic stresses, especially in the marginal northern tropics. Recent years, the genome sequencing and RNA-seq projects produced huge amount of sequence data, which greatly facilitated the functional genomics study. However, the characterization of individual functional gene is in urgent demands, especially for those involved in stress resistance. Here we identified and characterized the rubber tree gene ErbB-3 binding protein 1, which undergoes changes in expression in response to cold, drought stress and ABA treatment. HbEBP1 overexpression (OE) in Arabidopsis increased organ size, facilitated root growth and increased adult leaf number by delaying the vegetative-to-reproductive transition. In addition, HbEBP1 OE enhanced the resistance of the Arabidopsis plants to freezing and drought stress, demonstrating that this gene participates in the regulation of abiotic stress resistance. RD29a, RD22 and CYCD3;1 expression was also greatly enhanced by HbEBP1 OE, which explains its regulatory roles in organ size and stress resistance. The regulation of drought stress resistance is a novel function identified in plant EBP1 genes, which expands our understanding of the roles of EBP1 gene in response to the environment. Our results provide information that may lead to the use of HbEBP1 in genetically engineered crops to increase both biomass and abiotic stress resistance.

  15. Nicotine enhancement of dopamine release by a calcium-dependent increase in the size of the readily releasable pool of synaptic vesicles.

    PubMed

    Turner, Timothy J

    2004-12-15

    A major factor underlying compulsive tobacco use is nicotine-induced modulation of dopamine release in the mesolimbic reward pathway (Wise and Rompre, 1989). An established biochemical mechanism for nicotine-enhanced dopamine release is by activating presynaptic nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs) (Wonnacott, 1997). Prolonged application of 10(-7) to 10(-5) m nicotine to striatal synaptosomes promoted a sustained efflux of [3H]dopamine. This nicotine effect was mediated by non-alpha7 nAChRs, because it was blocked by 5 mum mecamylamine but was resistant to 100 nm alpha-bungarotoxin (alphaBgTx). Dopamine release was diminished by omitting Na+ or by applying peptide calcium channel blockers, indicating that nAChRs trigger release by depolarizing the nerve terminals. However, because alpha7 receptors rapidly desensitize in the continuous presence of agonists, a repetitive stimulation protocol was used to evaluate the possible significance of desensitization. This protocol produced a transient increase in [3H]dopamine released by depolarization and a significant increase in the response to hypertonic solutions that measure the size of the readily releasable pool (RRP) of synaptic vesicles. The nicotine-induced increase in the size of the readily releasable pool was blocked by alphaBgTx and by the calmodulin antagonist calmidazolium, suggesting that Ca2+ entry through alpha7 nAChRs specifically enhances synaptic vesicle mobilization at dopamine terminals. Thus, nicotine enhances dopamine release by two complementary actions mediated by discrete nAChR subtypes and suggest that the alpha7 nAChR-mediated pathway is tightly and specifically coupled to refilling of the RRP of vesicles in dopamine terminals.

  16. Overexpression of a Hevea brasiliensis ErbB-3 Binding protein 1 Gene Increases Drought Tolerance and Organ Size in Arabidopsis

    PubMed Central

    Cheng, Han; Chen, Xiang; Zhu, Jianshun; Huang, Huasun

    2016-01-01

    Rubber trees are economically important tropical tree species and the major source of natural rubber, which is an essential industrial material. This tropical perennial tree is susceptible to cold stress and other abiotic stresses, especially in the marginal northern tropics. Recent years, the genome sequencing and RNA-seq projects produced huge amount of sequence data, which greatly facilitated the functional genomics study. However, the characterization of individual functional gene is in urgent demands, especially for those involved in stress resistance. Here we identified and characterized the rubber tree gene ErbB-3 binding protein 1, which undergoes changes in expression in response to cold, drought stress and ABA treatment. HbEBP1 overexpression (OE) in Arabidopsis increased organ size, facilitated root growth and increased adult leaf number by delaying the vegetative-to-reproductive transition. In addition, HbEBP1 OE enhanced the resistance of the Arabidopsis plants to freezing and drought stress, demonstrating that this gene participates in the regulation of abiotic stress resistance. RD29a, RD22 and CYCD3;1 expression was also greatly enhanced by HbEBP1 OE, which explains its regulatory roles in organ size and stress resistance. The regulation of drought stress resistance is a novel function identified in plant EBP1 genes, which expands our understanding of the roles of EBP1 gene in response to the environment. Our results provide information that may lead to the use of HbEBP1 in genetically engineered crops to increase both biomass and abiotic stress resistance. PMID:27895658

  17. Deletion of Mbtps1 (Pcsk8, S1p, Ski-1) Gene in Osteocytes Stimulates Soleus Muscle Regeneration and Increased Size and Contractile Force with Age*

    PubMed Central

    Gorski, Jeff P.; Huffman, Nichole T.; Vallejo, Julian; Brotto, Leticia; Chittur, Sridar V.; Breggia, Anne; Stern, Amber; Huang, Jian; Mo, Chenglin; Seidah, Nabil G.; Bonewald, Lynda; Brotto, Marco

    2016-01-01

    Conditional deletion of Mbtps1 (cKO) protease in bone osteocytes leads to an age-related increase in mass (12%) and in contractile force (30%) in adult slow twitch soleus muscles (SOL) with no effect on fast twitch extensor digitorum longus muscles. Surprisingly, bone from 10–12-month-old cKO animals was indistinguishable from controls in size, density, and morphology except for a 25% increase in stiffness. cKO SOL exhibited increased expression of Pax7, Myog, Myod1, Notch, and Myh3 and 6-fold more centralized nuclei, characteristics of postnatal regenerating muscle, but only in type I myosin heavy chain-expressing cells. Increased expression of gene pathways mediating EGF receptor signaling, circadian exercise, striated muscle contraction, and lipid and carbohydrate oxidative metabolism were also observed in cKO SOL. This muscle phenotype was not observed in 3-month-old mice. Although Mbtps1 mRNA and protein expression was reduced in cKO bone osteocytes, no differences in Mbtps1 or cre recombinase expression were observed in cKO SOL, explaining this age-related phenotype. Understanding bone-muscle cross-talk may provide a fresh and novel approach to prevention and treatment of age-related muscle loss. PMID:26719336

  18. Environmentally-relevant concentrations of atrazine induce non-monotonic acceleration of developmental rate and increased size at metamorphosis in Rhinella arenarum tadpoles.

    PubMed

    Brodeur, Julie C; Sassone, Alina; Hermida, Gladys N; Codugnello, Nadia

    2013-06-01

    Despite of the various studies reporting on the subject, anticipating the impacts of the widely-used herbicide atrazine on anuran tadpoles metamorphosis remains complex as increases or decreases of larval period duration are almost as frequently reported as an absence of effect. The aim of the present study was to examine the effects of environmentally-relevant concentrations of atrazine (0.1, 1, 10, 100, and 1000μg/L) on the timings of metamorphosis and body size at metamorphosis in the common South American toad, Rhinella arenarum (Anura: bufonidae). None of the atrazine concentrations tested significantly altered survival. Low atrazine concentrations in the range of 1-100μg/L were found to accelerate developmental rate in a non-monotonic U-shaped concentration-response relationship. This observed acceleration of the metamorphic process occurred entirely between stages 25 and 39; treated tadpoles proceeding through metamorphosis as control animals beyond this point. Together with proceeding through metamorphosis at a faster rate, tadpoles exposed to atrazine concentrations in the range of 1-100μg/L furthermore transformed into significantly larger metamorphs than controls, the concentration-response curve taking the form of an inverted U in this case. The no observed effect concentration (NOEC) was 0.1μg atrazine/L for both size at metamorphosis and timings of metamorphosis. Tadpoles exposed to 100μg/L 17β-estradiol presented the exact same alterations of developmental rate and body size as those treated with 1, 10 and 100μg/L of atrazine. Elements of the experimental design that facilitated the detection of alterations of metamorphosis at low concentrations of atrazine are discussed, together with the ecological significance of those findings.

  19. Differences in pup birth weight, pup variability within litters, and dam weight of mice selected for alternative criteria to increase litter size.

    PubMed

    van Engelen, M A; Nielsen, M K; Ribeiro, E L

    1995-07-01

    Selection for litter size had been practiced for 21 generations and relaxed selection for 13 generations in mice. Three replicates were used with four selection criteria: index of components (ovulation rate and ova success), uterine capacity, litter size, and an unselected control. Especially with selection for litter size and the index relative to the control, number of pups born had increased, and differences also occurred in mating weight. Dams of the three replicates and their litters were used to evaluate the effects of accumulated selection on pup birth weight, variability in weight of littermates, and dam's weight at mating and after littering. Total number born, number born alive, number of males, and number of females were also recorded and studied. Mean pup birth weight did not differ among the criteria; however, variability among littermates in pup weight tended to differ among criteria of selection. Regressions for pup weight and within-litter standard deviation of pup weight on number born were small and negative but significant (P < .001). The distribution of pup weight within litter was normal for 77.2% of the litters, with no differences among the criteria. The difference between weight of male and weight of female pups was significant (P < .001); overall males were 2.5% heavier than females. There was a difference (P < .02) among criteria in mating weight and littering weight; however, the maternal weight gain between mating and littering was not different among criteria. Number born differed (P < .003) among the criteria, but there was no significant difference among criteria in numbers of males and females.(ABSTRACT TRUNCATED AT 250 WORDS)

  20. Soluble non-starch polysaccharides derived from complex food matrices do not increase average lipid droplet size during gastric lipid emulsification in rats.

    PubMed

    Fillery-Travis, A J; Gee, J M; Waldron, K W; Robins, M M; Johnson, I T

    1997-11-01

    The creation of a finely dispersed lipid emulsion is essential for efficient hydrolysis of dietary triglycerides. The effectiveness of emulsification within the stomach depends upon the shear force generated by gastric motility and the concentration of emulsifiers present in the gastric contents. Other dietary constituents can modify these factors, and previous studies have suggested that the presence of soluble non-starch polysaccharides (NSP) during digestion might increase the average size of intraluminal emulsion droplets. In the present study, we developed a new technique for the isolation and analysis of intraluminal lipid emulsions by optical diffraction analysis. The method was applied to rats fed powdered semipurified diets that were free of all NSP or supplemented with insoluble cellulose, guar gum, or NSP derived from apple, carrot or rolled oats. Cellulose had no significant effect on emulsion size, and there was no evidence that the average sizes of lipid droplets in the gastric fundus or antrum were higher than control values in rats fed diets supplemented with any source of soluble NSP. In the groups fed oats and cooked carrot NSP, the mean droplet diameters approached half the values for diets free of NSP or containing insoluble cellulose. The difference between rats fed NSP from cooked carrot and those fed cellulose was significant in the proximal stomach (P < 0.05), and that between rats fed raw oats and rats fed cellulose was significant in the distal stomach (P < 0.05). Soluble dietary fiber does not inhibit lipid or cholesterol absorption via any inhibition of lipid emulsification.

  1. Tree size and light availability increase photochemical instead of non-photochemical capacities of Nothofagus nitida trees growing in an evergreen temperate rain forest.

    PubMed

    Coopman, Rafael E; Briceño, Verónica F; Corcuera, Luis J; Reyes-Díaz, Marjorie; Alvarez, Daniela; Sáez, Katherine; García-Plazaola, José I; Alberdi, Miren; Bravo, León A

    2011-10-01

    Nothofagus nitida (Phil.) Krasser (Nothofagaceae) regenerates under the canopy in microsites protected from high light. Nonetheless, it is common to find older saplings in clear areas and adults as emergent trees of the Chilean evergreen forest. We hypothesized that this shade to sun transition in N. nitida is supported by an increase in photochemical and non-photochemical energy dissipation capacities of both photosystems in parallel with the increase in plant size and light availability. To dissect the relative contribution of light environment and plant developmental stage to these physiological responses, the photosynthetic performance of both photosystems was studied from the morpho-anatomical to the biochemical level in current-year leaves of N. nitida plants of different heights (ranging from 0.1 to 7 m) growing under contrasting light environments (integrated quantum flux (IQF) 5-40 mol m(-2). Tree height (TH) and light environment (IQF) independently increased the saturated electron transport rates of both photosystems, as well as leaf and palisade thickness, but non-photochemical energy flux, photoinhibition susceptibility, state transition capacity, and the contents of D1 and PsbS proteins were not affected by IQF and TH. Spongy mesophyll thickness and palisade cell diameter decreased with IQF and TH. A(max), light compensation and saturation points, Rubisco and nitrogen content (area basis) only increased with light environment (IQF), whereas dark respiration (R(d)) decreased slightly and relative chlorophyll content was higher in taller trees. Overall, the independent effects of more illuminated environment and tree height mainly increased the photochemical instead of the non-photochemical energy flux. Regardless of the photochemical increase with TH, carbon assimilation only significantly improved with higher IQF. Therefore it seems that mainly acclimation to the light environment supports the phenotypic transition of N. nitida from shade to

  2. Net Metering Policy Development and Distributed Solar Generation in Minnesota: Overview of Trends in Nationwide Policy Development and Implications of Increasing the Eligible System Size Cap

    SciTech Connect

    Doris, E.; Busche, S.; Hockett, S.

    2009-12-01

    The goal of the Minnesota net metering policy is to give the maximum possible encouragement to distributed generation assets, especially solar electric systems (MN 2008). However, according to a published set of best practices (NNEC 2008) that prioritize the maximum development of solar markets within states, the Minnesota policy does not incorporate many of the important best practices that may help other states transform their solar energy markets and increase the amount of grid-connected distributed solar generation assets. Reasons cited include the low system size limit of 40kW (the best practices document recommends a 2 MW limit) and a lack of language protecting generators from additional utility fees. This study was conducted to compare Minnesota's policies to national best practices. It provides an overview of the current Minnesota policy in the context of these best practices and other jurisdictions' net metering policies, as well as a qualitative assessment of the impacts of raising the system size cap within the policy based on the experiences of other states.

  3. Physiological adaptations to reproduction. I. Experimentally increasing litter size enhances aspects of antioxidant defence but does not cause oxidative damage in mice.

    PubMed

    Garratt, Michael; Pichaud, Nicolas; King, Edith D Aloise; Brooks, Robert C

    2013-08-01

    Life history theory suggests that investment in reproduction can trade off against growth, longevity and both reproduction and performance later in life. One possible reason for this trade-off is that reproduction directly causes somatic damage. Oxidative stress, an overproduction of reactive oxygen species in relation to cellular defences, can correlate with reproductive investment and has been implicated as a pathway leading to senescence. This has led to the suggestion that this aspect of physiology could be an important mechanism underlying the trade-off between reproduction and lifespan. We manipulated female reproductive investment to test whether oxidative stress increases with reproduction in mice. Each female's pups were cross-fostered to produce litters of either two or eight, representing low and high levels of reproductive investment for wild mice. No differences were observed between reproductive groups at peak lactation for several markers of oxidative stress in the heart and gastrocnemius muscle. Surprisingly, oxidative damage to proteins was lower in the livers of females with a litter size of eight than in females with two pups or non-reproductive control females. While protein oxidation decreased, activity levels of the antioxidant enzyme superoxide dismutase increased in the liver, suggesting this may be one pathway used to protect against oxidative stress. Our results highlight the need for caution when interpreting correlative relationships and suggest that oxidative stress does not increase with enhanced reproductive effort during lactation.

  4. Increased excitability of medium-sized dorsal root ganglion neurons by prolonged interleukin-1β exposure is K+ channel dependent and reversible

    PubMed Central

    Stemkowski, Patrick L; Noh, Myung-chul; Chen, Yishen; Smith, Peter A

    2015-01-01

    Chronic constriction injury of rat sciatic nerve promotes signs of neuropathic pain. This is associated with an increase in the level of interleukin 1β (IL-1β) in primary afferents that peaks at 7 days. This initial cytokine exposure has been proposed to trigger an enduring alteration in neuronal phenotype that underlies chronic hyper-excitability in sensory nerves, which initiates and maintains chronic neuropathic pain. We have shown previously that 5–6 days of exposure of rat dorsal root ganglia (DRGs) to 100 pm IL-1β increases the excitability of medium-sized neurons. We have now found using whole-cell recording that this increased excitability reverts to control levels within 3–4 days of cytokine removal. The effects of IL-1β were dominated by changes in K+ currents. Thus, the amplitudes of A-current, delayed rectifier and Ca2+-sensitive K+ currents were reduced by ∼68%, ∼64% and ∼36%, respectively. Effects of IL-1β on other cation currents were modest by comparison. There was thus a slight decrease in availability of high voltage-activated Ca2+ channel current, a small increase in rates of activation of hyperpolarization-activated cyclic nucleotide-gated channel current (IH), and a shift in the voltage dependence of activation of tetrodotoxin-sensitive sodium current (TTX-S INa) to more negative potentials. It is unlikely, therefore, that direct interaction of IL-1β with DRG neurons initiates an enduring phenotypic shift in their electrophysiological properties following sciatic nerve injury. Persistent increases in primary afferent excitability following nerve injury may instead depend on altered K+ channel function and on the continued presence of slightly elevated levels IL-1β and other cytokines. PMID:26110238

  5. Chewing activities and particle size of rumen digesta and feces of precision-fed dairy heifers fed different forage levels with increasing levels of distillers grains.

    PubMed

    Suarez-Mena, F X; Lascano, G J; Heinrichs, A J

    2013-08-01

    The objective of this study was to determine the effects of 2 differing forage to concentrate ratios (F:C) and various levels of corn dry distillers grain with solubles (DDGS) replacing canola meal in precision-fed dairy heifer rations on chewing behavior, rumen pH and fill, and particle size of rumen contents and feces. A split plot design with F:C as whole plot and DDGS inclusion level as subplot was administered in a 4-period 4 × 4 Latin square. Eight rumen-cannulated Holstein heifers (12.5±0.5 mo of age and 344±15 kg of body weight, respectively) housed in individual stalls were allocated to F:C 50:50 (low forage) or 75:25 [high forage (HF); dry matter basis] and to a sequence of DDGS level (0, 7, 14, and 21%; dry matter basis). Forage was a mix of 50% corn silage and 50% grass hay (dry matter basis). Diets were fed once daily and formulated to provide equal amounts of nutrients and body weight gain. No differences were found for rumen pH between dietary treatments. Time spent eating tended to be longer for HF and was not affected by DDGS inclusion rate. Ruminating time did not differ by F:C, but linearly increased as DDGS increased (422 to 450±21 min/d). Total chewing time tended to be longer for HF and to increase linearly as DDGS increased (553 to 579±33 min/d). Wet rumen digesta weight and volume were greater for HF. Geometric mean particle length of rumen contents was greater for HF 2h prefeeding when analyzed with solubles (particles <0.15 mm). Proportion of rumen solubles decreased as DDGS increased 5h postfeeding. Fecal geometric mean particle length and proportion of particles >1.18 mm increased with increasing levels of DDGS and did not change with F:C. Total chewing time increased by the addition of DDGS and higher F:C. Heifers can compensate for lower physically effective neutral detergent fiber by modifying their chewing behavior. Rumen pH was never at a level that could induce acidosis, and lower eating time at lower F:C was somewhat

  6. Increased HDL Size and Enhanced Apo A-I Catabolic Rates Are Associated With Doxorubicin-Induced Proteinuria in New Zealand White Rabbits.

    PubMed

    López-Olmos, Victoria; Carreón-Torres, Elizabeth; Luna-Luna, María; Flores-Castillo, Cristobal; Martínez-Ramírez, Miriam; Bautista-Pérez, Rocío; Franco, Martha; Sandoval-Zárate, Julio; Roldán, Francisco-Javier; Aranda-Fraustro, Alberto; Soria-Castro, Elizabeth; Muñoz-Vega, Mónica; Fragoso, José-Manuel; Vargas-Alarcón, Gilberto; Pérez-Méndez, Oscar

    2016-03-01

    The catabolism and structure of high-density lipoproteins (HDL) may be the determining factor of their atheroprotective properties. To better understand the role of the kidney in HDL catabolism, here we characterized HDL subclasses and the catabolic rates of apo A-I in a rabbit model of proteinuria. Proteinuria was induced by intravenous administration of doxorubicin in New Zealand white rabbits (n = 10). HDL size and HDL subclass lipids were assessed by electrophoresis of the isolated lipoproteins. The catabolic rate of HDL-apo A-I was evaluated by exogenous radiolabelling with iodine-131. Doxorubicin induced significant proteinuria after 4 weeks (4.47 ± 0.55 vs. 0.30 ± 0.02 g/L of protein in urine, P < 0.001) associated with increased uremia, creatininemia, and cardiotoxicity. Large HDL2b augmented significantly during proteinuria, whereas small HDL3b and HDL3c decreased compared to basal conditions. HDL2b, HDL2a, and HDL3a subclasses were enriched with triacylglycerols in proteinuric animals as determined by the triacylglycerol-to-phospholipid ratio; the cholesterol content in HDL subclasses remained unchanged. The fractional catabolic rate (FCR) of [(131)I]-apo A-I in the proteinuric rabbits was faster (FCR = 0.036 h(-1)) compared to control rabbits group (FCR = 0.026 h(-1), P < 0.05). Apo E increased and apo A-I decreased in HDL, whereas PON-1 activity increased in proteinuric rabbits. Proteinuria was associated with an increased number of large HDL2b particles and a decreased number of small HDL3b and 3c. Proteinuria was also connected to an alteration in HDL subclass lipids, apolipoprotein content of HDL, high paraoxonase-1 activity, and a rise in the fractional catabolic rate of the [(131)I]-apo A-I.

  7. Maternal choline supplementation improves spatial mapping and increases basal forebrain cholinergic neuron number and size in aged Ts65Dn mice.

    PubMed

    Ash, Jessica A; Velazquez, Ramon; Kelley, Christy M; Powers, Brian E; Ginsberg, Stephen D; Mufson, Elliott J; Strupp, Barbara J

    2014-10-01

    Down syndrome (DS) is marked by intellectual disability (ID) and early-onset of Alzheimer's disease (AD) neuropathology, including basal forebrain cholinergic neuron (BFCN) degeneration. The present study tested the hypothesis that maternal choline supplementation (MCS) improves spatial mapping and protects against BFCN degeneration in the Ts65Dn mouse model of DS and AD. During pregnancy and lactation, dams were assigned to either a choline sufficient (1.1g/kg choline chloride) or choline supplemented (5.0g/kg choline chloride) diet. Between 13 and 17months of age, offspring were tested in the radial arm water maze (RAWM) to examine spatial mapping followed by unbiased quantitative morphometry of BFCNs. Spatial mapping was significantly impaired in unsupplemented Ts65Dn mice relative to normal disomic (2N) littermates. Additionally, a significantly lower number and density of medial septum (MS) hippocampal projection BFCNs was also found in unsupplemented Ts65Dn mice. Notably, MCS significantly improved spatial mapping and increased number, density, and size of MS BFCNs in Ts65Dn offspring. Moreover, the density and number of MS BFCNs correlated significantly with spatial memory proficiency, providing support for a functional relationship between these behavioral and morphometric effects of MCS for trisomic offspring. Thus, increasing maternal choline intake during pregnancy may represent a safe and effective treatment approach for expectant mothers carrying a DS fetus, as well as a possible means of BFCN neuroprotection during aging for the population at large.

  8. Individual Maize Chromosomes in the C3 Plant Oat Can Increase Bundle Sheath Cell Size and Vein Density1[W][OA

    PubMed Central

    Tolley, Ben J.; Sage, Tammy L.; Langdale, Jane A.; Hibberd, Julian M.

    2012-01-01

    C4 photosynthesis has evolved in at least 66 lineages within the angiosperms and involves alterations to the biochemistry, cell biology, and development of leaves. The characteristic “Kranz” anatomy of most C4 leaves was discovered in the 1890s, but the genetic basis of these traits remains poorly defined. Oat × maize addition lines allow the effects of individual maize (Zea mays; C4) chromosomes to be investigated in an oat (Avena sativa; C3) genetic background. Here, we have determined the extent to which maize chromosomes can introduce C4 characteristics into oat and have associated any C4-like changes with specific maize chromosomes. While there is no indication of a simultaneous change to C4 biochemistry, leaf anatomy, and ultrastructure in any of the oat × maize addition lines, the C3 oat leaf can be modified at multiple levels. Maize genes encoding phosphoenolpyruvate carboxylase, pyruvate, orthophosphate dikinase, and the 2′-oxoglutarate/malate transporter are expressed in oat and generate transcripts of the correct size. Three maize chromosomes independently cause increases in vein density, and maize chromosome 3 results in larger bundle sheath cells with increased cell wall lipid deposition in oat leaves. These data provide proof of principle that aspects of C4 biology could be integrated into leaves of C3 crops. PMID:22675083

  9. Strategies for reducing supplemental medium cost in bioethanol production from waste house wood hydrolysate by ethanologenic Escherichia coli: inoculum size increase and coculture with Saccharomyces cerevisiae.

    PubMed

    Okuda, Naoyuki; Ninomiya, Kazuaki; Katakura, Yoshio; Shioya, Suteaki

    2008-02-01

    In this paper, we report a simultaneous realization of both efficient ethanol production and saving medium nutrient (corn steep liquor [CSL]) during bioethanol fermentation of overliming-treated hydrolysate of waste house wood (WHW) using ethanologenic Escherichia coli KO11. In cultivation using WHW hydrolysate supplemented with 4% (v/v) CSL and 0.2 g-dry cell weight (DCW)/l E. coli KO11 cells, the overall ethanol yield reached 84% of the theoretical value at 61 h. When we conducted the cultivation with 1% CSL to reduce the supplemental medium cost, the overall ethanol yield remained in the range of 66-72% even at 90 h. We proposed two alternative methods for increasing the overall yield even with 1% CSL. The first method involved increasing the inoculum size of E. coli KO11 up to 0.8 g-DCW/l, where 83% of the overall yield was attained at 60 h of cultivation. The second method involved the coculture of 0.2 g-DCW/l E. coli KO11 together with 0.02 g-DCW/l of Saccharomyces cerevisiae TJ1, and the overall yield reached 81% at 47 h of cultivation.

  10. Daily consumption of orange-fleshed sweet potato for 60 days increased plasma β-carotene concentration but did not increase total body vitamin A pool size in Bangladeshi women.

    PubMed

    Jamil, Kazi M; Brown, Kenneth H; Jamil, Maleka; Peerson, Janet M; Keenan, Alison H; Newman, John W; Haskell, Marjorie J

    2012-10-01

    We assessed the effect of daily consumption of orange-fleshed sweet potatoes (OFSP), with or without added fat, on the vitamin A (VA) status of Bangladeshi women with low initial VA status. Women (n = 30/group) received one of the following for 6 d/wk over 10 wk: 1) 0 μg retinol activity equivalents (RAE)/d as boiled white-fleshed sweet potatoes (WFSP) and a corn oil capsule, 2) 600 μg RAE/d as boiled OFSP and a corn oil capsule, 3) fried OFSP and a corn oil capsule, or 4) boiled WFSP and a retinyl palmitate capsule in addition to their home diets. Plasma concentrations of retinol and β-carotene and total body VA pool size were assessed before and after the 60-d intervention. Initial and final plasma retinol concentrations (mean ± SD) were 0.75 ± 0.18 μmol/L and 0.84 ± 0.19 μmol/L, respectively (P = 0.31); final means did not differ by group. Initial and final plasma β-carotene concentrations were 0.10 ± 00 μmol/L and 0.18 ± 0.09 μmol/L, respectively (P < 0.0001); final mean plasma β-carotene concentrations were higher in groups that received OFSP (P < 0.0001), and final mean plasma β-carotene was marginally higher in the group that received fried OFSP compared with boiled OFSP (P = 0.07). Initial and final total body VA pool sizes were 0.060 ± 0.047 mmol and 0.091 ± 0.070 mmol, respectively (P = 0.05, n = 110) and did not differ by group. Despite an increase in plasma β-carotene concentration, the impact of OFSP on VA status appears to be limited in Bangladeshi women residing in a resource-poor community.

  11. Chronic Exercise Increases Plasma Brain-Derived Neurotrophic Factor Levels, Pancreatic Islet Size, and Insulin Tolerance in a TrkB-Dependent Manner

    PubMed Central

    Jiménez-Maldonado, Alberto; de Álvarez-Buylla, Elena Roces; Montero, Sergio; Melnikov, Valery; Castro-Rodríguez, Elena; Gamboa-Domínguez, Armando; Rodríguez-Hernández, Alejandrina; Lemus, Mónica; Murguía, Jesús Muñiz

    2014-01-01

    Background Physical exercise improves glucose metabolism and insulin sensitivity. Brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) enhances insulin activity in diabetic rodents. Because physical exercise modifies BDNF production, this study aimed to investigate the effects of chronic exercise on plasma BDNF levels and the possible effects on insulin tolerance modification in healthy rats. Methods Wistar rats were divided into five groups: control (sedentary, C); moderate- intensity training (MIT); MIT plus K252A TrkB blocker (MITK); high-intensity training (HIT); and HIT plus K252a (HITK). Training comprised 8 weeks of treadmill running. Plasma BDNF levels (ELISA assay), glucose tolerance, insulin tolerance, and immunohistochemistry for insulin and the pancreatic islet area were evaluated in all groups. In addition, Bdnf mRNA expression in the skeletal muscle was measured. Principal Findings Chronic treadmill exercise significantly increased plasma BDNF levels and insulin tolerance, and both effects were attenuated by TrkB blocking. In the MIT and HIT groups, a significant TrkB-dependent pancreatic islet enlargement was observed. MIT rats exhibited increased liver glycogen levels following insulin administration in a TrkB-independent manner. Conclusions/Significance Chronic physical exercise exerted remarkable effects on insulin regulation by inducing significant increases in the pancreatic islet size and insulin sensitivity in a TrkB-dependent manner. A threshold for the induction of BNDF in response to physical exercise exists in certain muscle groups. To the best of our knowledge, these are the first results to reveal a role for TrkB in the chronic exercise-mediated insulin regulation in healthy rats. PMID:25531651

  12. Hybridisation is associated with increased fecundity and size in invasive taxa: meta-analytic support for the hybridisation-invasion hypothesis

    PubMed Central

    Hovick, Stephen M; Whitney, Kenneth D

    2014-01-01

    The hypothesis that interspecific hybridisation promotes invasiveness has received much recent attention, but tests of the hypothesis can suffer from important limitations. Here, we provide the first systematic review of studies experimentally testing the hybridisation-invasion (H-I) hypothesis in plants, animals and fungi. We identified 72 hybrid systems for which hybridisation has been putatively associated with invasiveness, weediness or range expansion. Within this group, 15 systems (comprising 34 studies) experimentally tested performance of hybrids vs. their parental species and met our other criteria. Both phylogenetic and non-phylogenetic meta-analyses demonstrated that wild hybrids were significantly more fecund and larger than their parental taxa, but did not differ in survival. Resynthesised hybrids (which typically represent earlier generations than do wild hybrids) did not consistently differ from parental species in fecundity, survival or size. Using meta-regression, we found that fecundity increased (but survival decreased) with generation in resynthesised hybrids, suggesting that natural selection can play an important role in shaping hybrid performance – and thus invasiveness – over time. We conclude that the available evidence supports the H-I hypothesis, with the caveat that our results are clearly driven by tests in plants, which are more numerous than tests in animals and fungi. PMID:25234578

  13. The NEDD8 inhibitor MLN4924 increases the size of the nucleolus and activates p53 through the ribosomal-Mdm2 pathway.

    PubMed

    Bailly, A; Perrin, A; Bou Malhab, L J; Pion, E; Larance, M; Nagala, M; Smith, P; O'Donohue, M-F; Gleizes, P-E; Zomerdijk, J; Lamond, A I; Xirodimas, D P

    2016-01-28

    The ubiquitin-like molecule NEDD8 is essential for viability, growth and development, and is a potential target for therapeutic intervention. We found that the small molecule inhibitor of NEDDylation, MLN4924, alters the morphology and increases the surface size of the nucleolus in human and germline cells of Caenorhabditis elegans in the absence of nucleolar fragmentation. SILAC proteomics and monitoring of rRNA production, processing and ribosome profiling shows that MLN4924 changes the composition of the nucleolar proteome but does not inhibit RNA Pol I transcription. Further analysis demonstrates that MLN4924 activates the p53 tumour suppressor through the RPL11/RPL5-Mdm2 pathway, with characteristics of nucleolar stress. The study identifies the nucleolus as a target of inhibitors of NEDDylation and provides a mechanism for p53 activation upon NEDD8 inhibition. It also indicates that targeting the nucleolar proteome without affecting nucleolar transcription initiates the required signalling events for the control of cell cycle regulators.

  14. Chronic emotional stress exposure increases infarct size in rats: the role of oxidative and nitrosative damage in response to sympathetic hyperactivity.

    PubMed

    Mercanoglu, G; Safran, N; Uzun, H; Eroglu, L

    2008-12-01

    We investigated the level of sympathetic hyperactivity in response to stress exposure in an acute myocardial infarction (AMI) model and the contribution of oxidative and nitrosative damage to this phenomenon. Stress was induced by 20-day administration of different emotional stress factors: daylight/darkness exposure, overcrowding, isolation, new hierarchy, tilting the cage and restriction of water or food. AMI was induced surgically. Heart rate (HR) and heart rate variability (HRV) measurements were done before and after AMI. Oxidant parameters were measured in heart tissue and cortisol levels were measured in plasma specimens. Compared with the nonstressed group, stress-exposed rats showed sympathetic hyperactivity characterized by increased HR together with decreased HRV. In the stressed group serum corticosterone levels were high both before and after AMI. Mean infarct size in the stressed group was significantly larger (44.6+/-3.23% and 53.1+/-4.52%, respectively; P<0.05). Increased tissue malondialdehyde (MDA) levels (0.63+/-0.59 and 1.60+/-0.31 nmol/mg protein, respectively; P<0.05) and decreased superoxide dismutase (SOD) activity and glutathione (GSH) content were seen in stress-exposed rats. Likewise, heart peroxynitrite levels were also high in stress-exposed rats (141.8+/-18 nmol/g tissue vs. 164.2+/-21 nmol/g tissue). Chronic emotional stress is a deteriorating factor for the induction and prognosis of MI. Exaggerated sympathetic activity may be the major contributing factor. Oxidative and nitrosative damage in response to this sympathetic hyperactivity is the key mechanism.

  15. Dosimetric response of variable-size cavities in photon-irradiated media and the behaviour of the Spencer-Attix cavity integral with increasing Δ.

    PubMed

    Kumar, Sudhir; Deshpande, Deepak D; Nahum, Alan E

    2016-04-07

    Cavity theory is fundamental to understanding and predicting dosimeter response. Conventional cavity theories have been shown to be consistent with one another by deriving the electron (+positron) and photon fluence spectra with the FLURZnrc user-code (EGSnrc Monte-Carlo system) in large volumes under quasi-CPE for photon beams of 1 MeV and 10 MeV in three materials (water, aluminium and copper) and then using these fluence spectra to evaluate and then inter-compare the Bragg-Gray, Spencer-Attix and 'large photon' 'cavity integrals'. The behaviour of the 'Spencer-Attix dose' (aka restricted cema), D S-A(▵), in a 1-MeV photon field in water has been investigated for a wide range of values of the cavity-size parameter ▵: D S-A(▵) decreases far below the Monte-Carlo dose (D MC) for ▵ greater than  ≈  30 keV due to secondary electrons with starting energies below ▵ not being 'counted'. We show that for a quasi-scatter-free geometry (D S-A(▵)/D MC) is closely equal to the proportion of energy transferred to Compton electrons with initial (kinetic) energies above ▵, derived from the Klein-Nishina (K-N) differential cross section. (D S-A(▵)/D MC) can be used to estimate the maximum size of a detector behaving as a Bragg-Gray cavity in a photon-irradiated medium as a function of photon-beam quality (under quasi CPE) e.g. a typical air-filled ion chamber is 'Bragg-Gray' at (monoenergetic) beam energies  ⩾260 keV. Finally, by varying the density of a silicon cavity (of 2.26 mm diameter and 2.0 mm thickness) in water, the response of different cavity 'sizes' was simulated; the Monte-Carlo-derived ratio D w/D Si for 6 MV and 15 MV photons varied from very close to the Spencer-Attix value at 'gas' densities, agreed well with Burlin cavity theory as ρ increased, and approached large photon behaviour for ρ  ≈  10 g cm(-3). The estimate of ▵ for the Si cavity was improved by incorporating a Monte-Carlo-derived correction for

  16. Body size and longitudinal body weight changes do not increase mortality in incident peritoneal dialysis patients of the Brazilian peritoneal dialysis multicenter study

    PubMed Central

    da Silva Fernandes, Natália Maria; Bastos, Marcus Gomes; Franco, Márcia Regina Gianotti; Chaoubah, Alfredo; da Glória Lima, Maria; Divino-Filho, José Carolino; Qureshi, Abdul Rashid

    2013-01-01

    OBJECTIVES: To determine the roles of body size and longitudinal body weight changes in the survival of incident peritoneal dialysis patients. PATIENTS AND METHODS: Patients (n = 1911) older than 18 years of age recruited from 114 dialysis centers (Dec/2004-Oct/2007) and participating in the Brazilian Peritoneal Dialysis Multicenter Cohort Study were included. Clinical and laboratory data were collected monthly (except if the patient received a transplant, recovered renal function, was transferred to hemodialysis, or died). RESULTS: Survival analyses were performed using Kaplan-Meier survival curves and Cox proportional hazards. Total follow-up was 34 months. The mean age was 59 years (54% female). The weight category percentages were as follows: underweight: 8%; normal: 51%; overweight: 29%; and obese 12%. The multivariate model showed a higher risk of death for a body mass index <18.5 kg/m2, a neutral risk between 25 and 29.9 kg/m2 and a protective effect for an index >30 kg/m2. Patients were divided into five categories according to quintiles of body weight changes during the first year of dialysis: <−3.1%, −3.1 to+0.12%, +0.12 to <+3.1% (reference category), +3.1 to +7.1% and >+7.1%. Patients in the lowest quintile had significantly higher mortality, whereas no negative impact was observed in the other quintiles. CONCLUSION: These findings suggest that overweight/obesity and a positive body weight variation during the first year of peritoneal dialysis therapy do not increase mortality in incident dialysis patients in Brazil. PMID:23420157

  17. Dosimetric response of variable-size cavities in photon-irradiated media and the behaviour of the Spencer-Attix cavity integral with increasing Δ

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kumar, Sudhir; Deshpande, Deepak D.; Nahum, Alan E.

    2016-04-01

    Cavity theory is fundamental to understanding and predicting dosimeter response. Conventional cavity theories have been shown to be consistent with one another by deriving the electron (+positron) and photon fluence spectra with the FLURZnrc user-code (EGSnrc Monte-Carlo system) in large volumes under quasi-CPE for photon beams of 1 MeV and 10 MeV in three materials (water, aluminium and copper) and then using these fluence spectra to evaluate and then inter-compare the Bragg-Gray, Spencer-Attix and ‘large photon’ ‘cavity integrals’. The behaviour of the ‘Spencer-Attix dose’ (aka restricted cema), D S-A(▵), in a 1-MeV photon field in water has been investigated for a wide range of values of the cavity-size parameter ▵: D S-A(▵) decreases far below the Monte-Carlo dose (D MC) for ▵ greater than  ≈  30 keV due to secondary electrons with starting energies below ▵ not being ‘counted’. We show that for a quasi-scatter-free geometry (D S-A(▵)/D MC) is closely equal to the proportion of energy transferred to Compton electrons with initial (kinetic) energies above ▵, derived from the Klein-Nishina (K-N) differential cross section. (D S-A(▵)/D MC) can be used to estimate the maximum size of a detector behaving as a Bragg-Gray cavity in a photon-irradiated medium as a function of photon-beam quality (under quasi CPE) e.g. a typical air-filled ion chamber is ‘Bragg-Gray’ at (monoenergetic) beam energies  ⩾260 keV. Finally, by varying the density of a silicon cavity (of 2.26 mm diameter and 2.0 mm thickness) in water, the response of different cavity ‘sizes’ was simulated; the Monte-Carlo-derived ratio D w/D Si for 6 MV and 15 MV photons varied from very close to the Spencer-Attix value at ‘gas’ densities, agreed well with Burlin cavity theory as ρ increased, and approached large photon behaviour for ρ  ≈  10 g cm-3. The estimate of ▵ for the Si cavity was improved by incorporating a Monte

  18. Daily consumption of orange-fleshed sweet potato with added fat tends to increase total body vitamin A pool size in vitamin A depleted Bangladeshi women

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    We assessed the affect of daily consumption of orange-fleshed sweet potato (OFSP), with or without added fat, on the total body vitamin A (VA) pool size of Bangladeshi women with low initial VA status. Women (n=120) received for 60d either 1) 0 µg RAE/d as boiled white-fleshed sweet potatoes (WFSP) ...

  19. Probability of double-strand breaks in genome-sized DNA by {gamma}-ray decreases markedly as the DNA concentration increases

    SciTech Connect

    Shimobayashi, Shunsuke F.; Iwaki, Takafumi; Mori, Toshiaki; Yoshikawa, Kenichi

    2013-05-07

    By use of the single-molecule observation, we count the number of DNA double-strand breaks caused by {gamma}-ray irradiation with genome-sized DNA molecules (166 kbp). We find that P{sub 1}, the number of double-strand breaks (DSBs) per base pair per unit Gy, is nearly inversely proportional to the DNA concentration above a certain threshold DNA concentration. The inverse relationship implies that the total number of DSBs remains essentially constant. We give a theoretical interpretation of our experimental results in terms of attack of reactive species upon DNA molecules, indicating the significance of the characteristics of genome-sized giant DNA as semiflexible polymers for the efficiency of DSBs.

  20. Increased size selectivity of Si quantum dots on SiC at low substrate temperatures: An ion-assisted self-organization approach

    SciTech Connect

    Seo, D. H.; Das Arulsamy, A.; Rider, A. E.; Levchenko, I.; Ostrikov, K.

    2010-01-15

    A simple, effective, and innovative approach based on ion-assisted self-organization is proposed to synthesize size-selected Si quantum dots (QDs) on SiC substrates at low substrate temperatures. Using hybrid numerical simulations, the formation of Si QDs through a self-organization approach is investigated by taking into account two distinct cases of Si QD formation using the ionization energy approximation theory, which considers ionized in-fluxes containing Si{sup 3+} and Si{sup 1+} ions in the presence of a microscopic nonuniform electric field induced by a variable surface bias. The results show that the highest percentage of the surface coverage by 1 and 2 nm size-selected QDs was achieved using a bias of -20 V and ions in the lowest charge state, namely, Si{sup 1+} ions in a low substrate temperature range (227-327 deg. C). As low substrate temperatures ({<=}500 deg. C) are desirable from a technological point of view, because (i) low-temperature deposition techniques are compatible with current thin-film Si-based solar cell fabrication and (ii) high processing temperatures can frequently cause damage to other components in electronic devices and destroy the tandem structure of Si QD-based third-generation solar cells, our results are highly relevant to the development of the third-generation all-Si tandem photovoltaic solar cells.

  1. Hypoxia induces voltage-dependent Ca2+ entry and quantal dopamine secretion in carotid body glomus cells.

    PubMed Central

    Ureña, J; Fernández-Chacón, R; Benot, A R; Alvarez de Toledo, G A; López-Barneo, J

    1994-01-01

    We have investigated the changes of cytosolic [Ca2+] and the secretory activity in single glomus cells dispersed from rabbit carotid bodies during exposure to solutions with variable O2 tension (Po2). In normoxic conditions (Po2 = 145 mmHg; 1 mmHg = 133 Pa), intracellular [Ca2+] was 58 +/- 29 nM, and switching to low Po2 (between 10 and 60 mmHg) led to a reversible increase of [Ca2+] up to 800 nM. The response to hypoxia completely disappeared after removal of external Ca2+ or with the addition of 0.2 mM Cd2+ to the external solution. These same solutions also abolished both the Ca2+ current of the cells and the increase of internal [Ca2+] elicited by high external K+. Elevations of cytosolic [Ca2+] in response to hypoxia or to direct membrane depolarization elicited the release of dopamine, which was detected by amperometric techniques. Dopamine secretion occurred in episodes of spike-like activity that appear to represent the release from single secretory vesicles. From the mean charge of well-resolved secretory events, we estimated the average number of dopamine molecules per vesicle to be approximately 140,000, a value about 15 times smaller than a previous estimate in chromaffin granules of adrenomedullary cells. These results directly demonstrate in a single-cell preparation the secretory response of glomus cells to hypoxia. The data indicate that the enhancement of cellular excitability upon exposure to low Po2 results in Ca2+ entry through voltage-gated channels, which leads to an increase in intracellular [Ca2+] and exocytotic transmitter release. PMID:7937863

  2. Use of social network sites and instant messaging does not lead to increased offline social network size, or to emotionally closer relationships with offline network members.

    PubMed

    Pollet, Thomas V; Roberts, Sam G B; Dunbar, Robin I M

    2011-04-01

    The effect of Internet use on social relationships is still a matter of intense debate. This study examined the relationships between use of social media (instant messaging and social network sites), network size, and emotional closeness in a sample of 117 individuals aged 18 to 63 years old. Time spent using social media was associated with a larger number of online social network "friends." However, time spent using social media was not associated with larger offline networks, or feeling emotionally closer to offline network members. Further, those that used social media, as compared to non-users of social media, did not have larger offline networks, and were not emotionally closer to offline network members. These results highlight the importance of considering potential time and cognitive constraints on offline social networks when examining the impact of social media use on social relationships.

  3. A Method to Increase Current Density in a Mono Element Internal Tin Processed Superconductor Utilizing Zr Oxide to Refine Grain Size

    SciTech Connect

    Bruce A. Zeitlin, Eric Gregory

    2008-04-07

    The effect of Oxygen on (Nb1Zr)3Sn multifilament conductors manufactured by the Mono Element Internal Tin (MEIT) process was explored to improve the current density by refining the grain size. This followed work first done by General Electric on the Nb3Sn tape process. Techniques to fabricate the more difficult Nb1Zr composites are described and allowed fabrication of long lengths of .254 mm diameter wire from an 88.9 mm diameter billet. Oxygen was incorporated through the use of SnO2 mixed with tin powder and incorporated into the core. These were compared to samples with Ti+Sn and Cu+Sn cores. Heat treatments covered the range of 700 C to 1000 C. Current density vs. H, grain size, and reaction percentages are provided for the materials tested. The Oxygen gave superior results in the temperature range of 815-1000 C. It also stabilized the filament geometry of the array in comparison to the other additions at the higher temperatures. At 815 C a peak in layer Jc yielded values of 2537 A/mm2 at 12 T and 1353 A/mm2 at 15T, 8-22% and 30-73% greater respectively than 700 C values. Results with Oxygen at high temperature show the possibility of high speed continuous reaction of the composite versus the current batch or react in place methods. In general the Ti additions gave superior results at the lower reaction temperature. Future work is suggested to determine if the 815 C reaction temperature can lead to higher current density in high tin (Nb1Zr+Ox)3Sn conductors. A second technique incorporated oxygen directly into the Nb1Zr rods through heat treatment with Nb2O5 at 1100 C for 100 hours in vacuum prior to extrusion. The majority of the filaments reduced properly in the composite but some local variations in hardness led to breakage at smaller diameters.

  4. Cobalt protoporphyrin pretreatment protects human embryonic stem cell-derived cardiomyocytes from hypoxia/reoxygenation injury in vitro and increases graft size and vascularization in vivo.

    PubMed

    Luo, Jun; Weaver, Matthew S; Cao, Baohong; Dennis, James E; Van Biber, Benjamin; Laflamme, Michael A; Allen, Margaret D

    2014-06-01

    Human embryonic stem cell-derived cardiomyocytes (hESC-CMs) can regenerate infarcted myocardium. However, when implanted into acutely infarcted hearts, few cells survive the first week postimplant. To improve early graft survival, hESC-CMs were pretreated with cobalt protoporphyrin (CoPP), a transcriptional activator of cytoprotective heme oxygenase-1 (HO-1). When hESC-CMs were challenged with an in vitro hypoxia/reoxygenation injury, mimicking cell transplantation into an ischemic site, survival was significantly greater among cells pretreated with CoPP versus phosphate-buffered saline (PBS)-pretreated controls. Compared with PBS-pretreated cells, CoPP-pretreated hESC-CM preparations exhibited higher levels of HO-1 expression, Akt phosphorylation, and vascular endothelial growth factor production, with reduced apoptosis, and a 30% decrease in intracellular reactive oxygen species. For in vivo translation, 1 × 10(7) hESC-CMs were pretreated ex vivo with CoPP or PBS and then injected intramyocardially into rat hearts immediately following acute infarction (permanent coronary ligation). At 1 week, hESC-CM content, assessed by quantitative polymerase chain reaction for human Alu sequences, was 17-fold higher in hearts receiving CoPP- than PBS-pretreated cells. On histomorphometry, cardiomyocyte graft size was 2.6-fold larger in hearts receiving CoPP- than PBS-pretreated cells, occupying up to 12% of the ventricular area. Vascular density of host-perfused human-derived capillaries was significantly greater in grafts composed of CoPP- than PBS-pretreated cells. Taken together, these experiments demonstrate that ex vivo pretreatment of hESC-CMs with a single dose of CoPP before intramyocardial implantation more than doubled resulting graft size and improved early graft vascularization in acutely infarcted hearts. These findings open the door for delivery of these, or other, stem cells during acute interventional therapy following myocardial infarction or ischemia.

  5. The effect of the North Atlantic Subpolar Front as a boundary in pelagic biogeography decreases with increasing depth and organism size

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Vecchione, Michael; Falkenhaug, Tone; Sutton, Tracey; Cook, April; Gislason, Astthor; Hansen, Hege Øverbø; Heino, Mikko; Miller, Peter I.; Piatkowski, Uwe; Porteiro, Filipe; Søiland, Henrik; Bergstad, Odd Aksel

    2015-11-01

    Broad-scale patterns in the distribution of deep-sea pelagic species and communities are poorly known. An important question is whether biogeographic boundaries identified from surface features are important in the deep mesopelagic and bathypelagic. We present community analyses of discrete-depth samples of mesozooplankton and micronekton to full-ocean depth collected in the area where the Mid-Atlantic Ridge is crossed by the Subpolar Front. The results show that the distributional discontinuity associated with the front, which is strong near the surface, decreases with increasing depth. Both the frontal separation near the surface and the community convergence at increasing depths were clearer for mesozooplankton than for micronekton.

  6. Polyether ether ketone implants achieve increased bone fusion when coated with nano-sized hydroxyapatite: a histomorphometric study in rabbit bone.

    PubMed

    Johansson, Pär; Jimbo, Ryo; Naito, Yoshihito; Kjellin, Per; Currie, Fredrik; Wennerberg, Ann

    2016-01-01

    Polyether ether ketone (PEEK) possesses excellent mechanical properties similar to those of human bone and is considered the best alternative material other than titanium for orthopedic spine and trauma implants. However, the deficient osteogenic properties and the bioinertness of PEEK limit its fields of application. The aim of this study was to limit these drawbacks by coating the surface of PEEK with nano-scaled hydroxyapatite (HA) minerals. In the study, the biological response to PEEK, with and without HA coating, was investigated. Twenty-four screw-like and apically perforated implants in the rabbit femur were histologically evaluated at 3 weeks and 12 weeks after surgery. Twelve of the 24 implants were HA coated (test), and the remaining 12 served as uncoated PEEK controls. At 3 weeks and 12 weeks, the mean bone-implant contact was higher for test compared to control (P<0.05). The bone area inside the threads was comparable in the two groups, but the perforating hole showed more bone area for the HA-coated implants at both healing points (P<0.01). With these results, we conclude that nano-sized HA coating on PEEK implants significantly improved the osteogenic properties, and in a clinical situation this material composition may serve as an implant where a rapid bone fusion is essential.

  7. Polyether ether ketone implants achieve increased bone fusion when coated with nano-sized hydroxyapatite: a histomorphometric study in rabbit bone

    PubMed Central

    Johansson, Pär; Jimbo, Ryo; Naito, Yoshihito; Kjellin, Per; Currie, Fredrik; Wennerberg, Ann

    2016-01-01

    Polyether ether ketone (PEEK) possesses excellent mechanical properties similar to those of human bone and is considered the best alternative material other than titanium for orthopedic spine and trauma implants. However, the deficient osteogenic properties and the bioinertness of PEEK limit its fields of application. The aim of this study was to limit these drawbacks by coating the surface of PEEK with nano-scaled hydroxyapatite (HA) minerals. In the study, the biological response to PEEK, with and without HA coating, was investigated. Twenty-four screw-like and apically perforated implants in the rabbit femur were histologically evaluated at 3 weeks and 12 weeks after surgery. Twelve of the 24 implants were HA coated (test), and the remaining 12 served as uncoated PEEK controls. At 3 weeks and 12 weeks, the mean bone–implant contact was higher for test compared to control (P<0.05). The bone area inside the threads was comparable in the two groups, but the perforating hole showed more bone area for the HA-coated implants at both healing points (P<0.01). With these results, we conclude that nano-sized HA coating on PEEK implants significantly improved the osteogenic properties, and in a clinical situation this material composition may serve as an implant where a rapid bone fusion is essential. PMID:27103801

  8. Design Modifications for Increasing the BOm and EOM Power Output and Reducing the Size and Mass of RTG for the Pluto Mission

    SciTech Connect

    Schock, Alfred; Or, Chuen T; Kumar, Vasanth

    1994-08-01

    Paper presented at the 29th IECEC in Monterey, CA in August 1994. A companion paper analyzed the effect on source modules for three specific fuel options, and compared the predicted power output with JPL's latest goals for the Pluto Fast Flyby (PFF) mission. The results showed that a 5-module RTG cannot fully meet JPL's goals with any of the available fuels; and that a 6-module RTG more than meets those goals with Russian fuel, almost meets them with U.S. (Cassini-type) fuel, but still falls far short of meeting them with the depleted fuel from the aged (1982) Galileo spare RTG. The inadequacy of the aged fuel was disappointing,because heat source modules made from it already exist, and their use in PFF could result in substantial cost savings. The present paper describes additional analyses which showed that a six-module RTG with the aged fuel can meet JPL's stipulated power margin with a relatively simple design modification, that a second design modification makes it possible to recover all of the mass and size penalty for going from five to six heat source modules, and that a third modification could raise the EOM power margin to 16%.

  9. Design Modifications for Increasing the BOM and EOM Power Output and Reducing the Size and Mass of RTG for the Pluto Mission

    SciTech Connect

    Schock, Alfred; Or, Chuen T; Kumar, Vasanth

    1994-06-01

    A companion paper analyzed the effect on source modules for three specific fuel options, and compared the predicted power output with JPL's latest goals for the Pluto Fast Flyby (PFF) mission. The results showed that a 5-module RTG cannot fully meet JPL's goals with any of the available fuels; and that a 6-module RTG more than meets those goals with Russian fuel, almost meets them with U.S. (Cassini-type) fuel, but still falls far short of meeting them with the depleted fuel from the aged (1982) Galileo spare RTG. The inadequacy of the aged fuel was disappointing,because heat source modules made from it already exist, and their use in PFF could result in substantial cost savings. The present paper describes additional analyses which showed that a six-module RTG with the aged fuel can meet JPL's stipulated power margin with a relatively simple design modification, that a second design modification makes it possible to recover all of the mass and size penalty for going from five to six heat source modules, and that a third modification could raise the EOM power margin to 16%. There are four copies in the file. Cross Reference ESD Files FSC-ESD-217-94-531 (CID #8572)

  10. Increasing lengths of aftershock zones with depths of moderate-size earthquakes on the San Jacinto Fault suggests triggering of deep creep in the middle crust

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Meng, Xiaofeng; Peng, Zhigang

    2016-01-01

    Recent geodetic studies along the San Jacinto Fault (SJF) in southern California revealed a shallower locking depth than the seismogenic depth outlined by microseismicity. This disagreement leads to speculations that creeping episodes drive seismicity in the lower part of the seismogenic zone. Whether deep creep occurs along the SJF holds key information on how fault slips during earthquake cycle and potential seismic hazard imposed to southern California. Here we apply a matched filter technique to 10 M > 4 earthquake sequences along the SJF since 2000 and obtain more complete earthquake catalogues. We then systematic investigate spatio-temporal evolutions of these aftershock sequences. We find anomalously large aftershock zones for earthquakes occurred below the geodetically inferred locking depth (i.e. 11-12 km), while aftershock zones of shallower main shocks are close to expectations from standard scaling relationships. Although we do not observe clear migration of aftershocks, most aftershock zones do expand systematically with logarithmic time since the main shock. All the evidences suggest that aftershocks near or below the locking depth are likely driven by deep creep following the main shock. The presence of a creeping zone below 11-12 km may have significant implications on the maximum sizes of events in this region.

  11. Parent, peer, and media influences on body image and strategies to both increase and decrease body size among adolescent boys and girls.

    PubMed

    McCabe, M P; Ricciardelli, L A

    2001-01-01

    This study investigated the nature of body image and body change strategies, as well as the sociocultural influences on these variables, among a group of 1,266 adolescents (622 males, 644 females). In particular, it investigated weight gain and increased muscle, as well as weight loss. It was found that females were less satisfied with their bodies and were more likely to adopt strategies to lose weight, whereas males were more likely to adopt strategies to increase weight and muscle tone. Respondents with higher body mass index (BMI) evidenced greater body dissatisfaction and more weight loss strategies, but there were no differences between BMI groups in weight gain or strategies to increase muscles. Weight gain and strategies to increase muscles were more likely to be undertaken by older adolescents, but there were no grade level differences in weight loss. Media influences to alter weight, as well as feedback from mother, father, and both male and female peers, were greater for females. There were few grade level or BMI differences in regard to any of the sociocultural influences. The importance of these findings in terms of providing a better understanding of factors which may lead to a disturbed body image and body change disorders, particularly among adolescent boys, is discussed.

  12. Parent, Peer, and Media Influences on Body Image and Strategies to Both Increase and Decrease Body Size among Adolescent Boys and Girls.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    McCabe, Marita P.; Ricciardelli, Lina A.

    2001-01-01

    Investigated the nature of body image and body change strategies, as well as sociocultural influences on these variables, among a group of 1,266 adolescents. Findings indicated females were less satisfied with their bodies and were more likely to adopt strategies to lose weight, whereas males were likely to adopt strategies to increase weight and…

  13. Quantal Response: Estimation and Inference

    DTIC Science & Technology

    2014-09-01

    but this is not explicit. 5.1.1.4 Probit Design (for Normal Distributions) The probit design of test involves a number of trials at each of several...21 ; Nuremberg , Germany. Personal Armour Systems Symposium; 2012 Sep 17–21. 23. Silvapulle MJ. On likelihood ratio tests of one-sided hypotheses in

  14. Increased photocatalytic activity of NiO and ZnO in photodegradation of a model drug aqueous solution: Effect of coupling, supporting, particles size and calcination temperature.

    PubMed

    Derikvandi, Hadis; Nezamzadeh-Ejhieh, Alireza

    2017-01-05

    Mechanically ball-mill prepared clinoptilolite nanoparticles (NC) were used for increasing photocatalytic activity of NiO and ZnO as alone and binary systems. The semiconductors were supported onto the zeolite during calcination of Ni(II)-Zn(II)-exchanged NC at different calcinations temperatures. XRD, FTIR, SEM-EDX, X-ray mapping, DRS, TEM and BET techniques were used for characterization of the samples. The calcined catalysts at 400°C for 4h showed the best photocatalytic activity for metronidazole (MNZ) in aqueous solution. The mole ratio of ZnO/NiO affected the photodegradation efficiency because activity of the coupled catalysts depends to the both e/h production and electron scavenging processes. In the used system, NiO acted as e/h production source and ZnO as an electron sink. Red shifts in band gaps of the supported coupled semiconductors was observed whit respect to monocomponent one, confirming formation of nanoparticles of the semiconductors onto the zeolitic bed. The best activities were obtained for the NiO1.3-ZnO1.5/NC (NZ-NC) and NiO0.7-ZnO4.3/NC (NZ3-NC) catalysts at pH 3, 1.2gL(-1) of the catalysts and 1gL(-1) of MNZ.

  15. Transporters expressed during grape berry (Vitis vinifera L.) development are associated with an increase in berry size and berry potassium accumulation.

    PubMed

    Davies, Christopher; Shin, Ryoung; Liu, Weihong; Thomas, Mark R; Schachtman, Daniel P

    2006-01-01

    Potassium accumulation is essential for grapevine (Vitis vinifera L.) growth and development, but excessive levels in berries at harvest may reduce wine quality particularly for red wines. In addition to decreasing the free acid levels, potassium also combines with tartaric acid to form largely insoluble potassium bitartrate. This precipitates during winemaking and storage, resulting in an increase in wine pH that is associated with negative impacts on wine colour, flavour, and microbiological stability. For these reasons, a better understanding of potassium transport and accumulation within the vine and berries is important for producing fruit with improved winemaking characteristics. Here two genes encoding KUP/KT/HAK-type potassium transporters that are expressed in grape berries are described. Their function as potassium transporters was demonstrated by complementation of an Escherichia coli mutant. The two transporters are expressed most highly in the berry skin during the first phase of berry development (pre-veraison), with similar patterns in two grapevine varieties. The timing and location of expression of these transporters are consistent with an involvement in potassium accumulation in grape berries.

  16. Site-specific conjugation of monodispersed DOTA-PEGn to a thiolated diabody reveals the effect of increasing peg size on kidney clearance and tumor uptake with improved 64-copper PET imaging.

    PubMed

    Li, Lin; Crow, Desiree; Turatti, Fabio; Bading, James R; Anderson, Anne-Line; Poku, Erasmus; Yazaki, Paul J; Carmichael, Jenny; Leong, David; Wheatcroft, David; Wheatcroft, Michael P; Raubitschek, Andrew A; Hudson, Peter J; Colcher, David; Shively, John E

    2011-04-20

    Optimal PET imaging of tumors with radiolabeled engineered antibodies requires, among other parameters, matching blood clearance and tumor uptake with the half-life of the engineered antibody. Although diabodies have favorable molecular sizes (50 kDa) for rapid blood clearance (t(1/2) = 30-60 min) and are bivalent, thereby increasing tumor uptake, they exhibit substantial kidney uptake as their major route of clearance, which is especially evident when they are labeled with the PET isotope (64)Cu (t(1/2) = 12 h). To overcome this drawback, diabodies may be conjugated to PEG, a modification that increases the apparent molecular size of the diabody and reduces kidney uptake without adversely affecting tumor uptake or the tumor to blood ratio. We show here that site-specific attachment of monodispersed PEGn of increasing molecular size (n = 12, 24, and 48) can uniformly increase the apparent molecular size of the PEG-diabody conjugate, decrease kidney uptake, and increase tumor uptake, the latter due to the increased residence time of the conjugate in the blood. Since the monodispersed PEGs were preconjugated to the chelator DOTA, the conjugates were able to bind radiometals such as (111)In and (64)Cu that can be used for SPECT and PET imaging, respectively. To allow conjugation of the DOTA-PEG to the diabody, the DOTA-PEG incorporated a terminal cysteine conjugated to a vinyl sulfone moiety. In order to control the conjugation chemistry, we have engineered a surface thiolated diabody that incorporates two cysteines per monomer (four per diabody). The thiolated diabody was expressed and purified from bacterial fermentation and only needs to be reduced prior to conjugation to the DOTA-PEGn-Cys-VS. This novel imaging agent (a diabody with DOTA-PEG48-Cys-VS attached to introduced thiols) gave up to 80%ID/g of tumor uptake with a tumor to blood ratio (T/B) of 8 at 24 h when radiolabeled with (111)In and 37.9% ID/g of tumor uptake (T/B = 8) at 44 h when radiolabeled with

  17. Class Size.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Underwood, Siobhan; Lumsden, Linda S.

    1994-01-01

    The items featured in this annotated bibliography touch on several aspects of the multifaceted class-size debate. Allen Odden reviews the literature and contends that class-size reduction should be used "sparingly and strategically." C. M. Achilles and colleagues examines two different class-size situations and find student test…

  18. Subcellular Size

    PubMed Central

    Marshall, Wallace F.

    2016-01-01

    All of the same conceptual questions about size in organisms apply equally at the level of single cells. What determines the size, not only of the whole cell, but of all its parts? What ensures that subcellular components are properly proportioned relative to the whole cell? How does alteration in organelle size affect biochemical function? Answering such fundamental questions requires us to understand how the size of individual organelles and other cellular structures is determined. Knowledge of organelle biogenesis and dynamics has advanced rapidly in recent years. Does this knowledge give us enough information to formulate reasonable models for organelle size control, or are we still missing something? PMID:25957302

  19. Lipid Raft Size and Lipid Mobility in Non-raft Domains Increase during Aging and Are Exacerbated in APP/PS1 Mice Model of Alzheimer's Disease. Predictions from an Agent-Based Mathematical Model

    PubMed Central

    Santos, Guido; Díaz, Mario; Torres, Néstor V.

    2016-01-01

    A connection between lipid rafts and Alzheimer's disease has been studied during the last decades. Mathematical modeling approaches have recently been used to correlate the effects of lipid composition changes in the physicochemical properties of raft-like membranes. Here we propose an agent based model to assess the effect of lipid changes in lipid rafts on the evolution and progression of Alzheimer's disease using lipid profile data obtained in an established model of familial Alzheimer's disease. We have observed that lipid raft size and lipid mobility in non-raft domains are two main factors that increase during age and are accelerated in the transgenic Alzheimer's disease mouse model. The consequences of these changes are discussed in the context of neurotoxic amyloid β production. Our agent based model predicts that increasing sterols (mainly cholesterol) and long-chain polyunsaturated fatty acids (LCPUFA) (mainly DHA, docosahexaenoic acid) proportions in the membrane composition might delay the onset and progression of the disease. PMID:27014089

  20. Lipid Raft Size and Lipid Mobility in Non-raft Domains Increase during Aging and Are Exacerbated in APP/PS1 Mice Model of Alzheimer's Disease. Predictions from an Agent-Based Mathematical Model.

    PubMed

    Santos, Guido; Díaz, Mario; Torres, Néstor V

    2016-01-01

    A connection between lipid rafts and Alzheimer's disease has been studied during the last decades. Mathematical modeling approaches have recently been used to correlate the effects of lipid composition changes in the physicochemical properties of raft-like membranes. Here we propose an agent based model to assess the effect of lipid changes in lipid rafts on the evolution and progression of Alzheimer's disease using lipid profile data obtained in an established model of familial Alzheimer's disease. We have observed that lipid raft size and lipid mobility in non-raft domains are two main factors that increase during age and are accelerated in the transgenic Alzheimer's disease mouse model. The consequences of these changes are discussed in the context of neurotoxic amyloid β production. Our agent based model predicts that increasing sterols (mainly cholesterol) and long-chain polyunsaturated fatty acids (LCPUFA) (mainly DHA, docosahexaenoic acid) proportions in the membrane composition might delay the onset and progression of the disease.

  1. Fully quantal calculation of H{sub 2} translation-rotation states in the (p-H{sub 2}){sub 2}@5{sup 12}6{sup 4} clathrate hydrate inclusion compound

    SciTech Connect

    Felker, Peter M.

    2014-11-14

    The quantal translation-rotation (TR) states of the (p-H{sub 2}){sub 2}@5{sup 12}6{sup 4} clathrate hydrate inclusion compound have been computed. The ten-dimensional problem (in the rigid-cage and rigid-H{sub 2} approximation) is solved by first approximating the H{sub 2} moieties as spherically symmetric and solving for their 6D translational eigenstates. These are then combined with H{sub 2} free rotational states in a product basis that is used to diagonalize the full TR hamiltonian. The computed low-energy eigenstates have translational components that are essentially identical to the 6D translational eigenstates and rotational components that are 99.9% composed of rotationally unexcited H{sub 2} moieties. In other words, TR coupling is minimal for the low-energy states of the species. The low-energy level structure is found to be substantially more congested than that of the more tightly packed (p-H{sub 2}){sub 4}@5{sup 12}6{sup 4} clathrate species. The level structure is also shown to be understandable in terms of a model of (H{sub 2}){sub 2} as a semirigid diatomic species consisting of two spherically symmetric H{sub 2} pseudo-atoms.

  2. Exploring Size.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Brand, Judith, Ed.

    1995-01-01

    "Exploring" is a magazine of science, art, and human perception that communicates ideas museum exhibits cannot demonstrate easily by using experiments and activities for the classroom. This issue concentrates on size, examining it from a variety of viewpoints. The focus allows students to investigate and discuss interconnections among…

  3. A Point Mutation in Suppressor of Cytokine Signalling 2 (Socs2) Increases the Susceptibility to Inflammation of the Mammary Gland while Associated with Higher Body Weight and Size and Higher Milk Production in a Sheep Model

    PubMed Central

    Rupp, Rachel; Senin, Pavel; Sarry, Julien; Allain, Charlotte; Tasca, Christian; Ligat, Laeticia; Portes, David; Woloszyn, Florent; Bouchez, Olivier; Tabouret, Guillaume; Lebastard, Mathieu; Caubet, Cécile

    2015-01-01

    Mastitis is an infectious disease mainly caused by bacteria invading the mammary gland. Genetic control of susceptibility to mastitis has been widely evidenced in dairy ruminants, but the genetic basis and underlying mechanisms are still largely unknown. We describe the discovery, fine mapping and functional characterization of a genetic variant associated with elevated milk leukocytes count, or SCC, as a proxy for mastitis. After implementing genome-wide association studies, we identified a major QTL associated with SCC on ovine chromosome 3. Fine mapping of the region, using full sequencing with 12X coverage in three animals, provided one strong candidate SNP that mapped to the coding sequence of a highly conserved gene, suppressor of cytokine signalling 2 (Socs2). The frequency of the SNP associated with increased SCC was 21.7% and the Socs2 genotype explained 12% of the variance of the trait. The point mutation induces the p.R96C substitution in the SH2 functional domain of SOCS2 i.e. the binding site of the protein to various ligands, as well-established for the growth hormone receptor GHR. Using surface plasmon resonance we showed that the p.R96C point mutation completely abrogates SOCS2 binding affinity for the phosphopeptide of GHR. Additionally, the size, weight and milk production in p.R96C homozygote sheep, were significantly increased by 24%, 18%, and 4.4%, respectively, when compared to wild type sheep, supporting the view that the point mutation causes a loss of SOCS2 functional activity. Altogether these results provide strong evidence for a causal mutation controlling SCC in sheep and highlight the major role of SOCS2 as a tradeoff between the host’s inflammatory response to mammary infections, and body growth and milk production, which are all mediated by the JAK/STAT signaling pathway. PMID:26658352

  4. A Point Mutation in Suppressor of Cytokine Signalling 2 (Socs2) Increases the Susceptibility to Inflammation of the Mammary Gland while Associated with Higher Body Weight and Size and Higher Milk Production in a Sheep Model.

    PubMed

    Rupp, Rachel; Senin, Pavel; Sarry, Julien; Allain, Charlotte; Tasca, Christian; Ligat, Laeticia; Portes, David; Woloszyn, Florent; Bouchez, Olivier; Tabouret, Guillaume; Lebastard, Mathieu; Caubet, Cécile; Foucras, Gilles; Tosser-Klopp, Gwenola

    2015-12-01

    Mastitis is an infectious disease mainly caused by bacteria invading the mammary gland. Genetic control of susceptibility to mastitis has been widely evidenced in dairy ruminants, but the genetic basis and underlying mechanisms are still largely unknown. We describe the discovery, fine mapping and functional characterization of a genetic variant associated with elevated milk leukocytes count, or SCC, as a proxy for mastitis. After implementing genome-wide association studies, we identified a major QTL associated with SCC on ovine chromosome 3. Fine mapping of the region, using full sequencing with 12X coverage in three animals, provided one strong candidate SNP that mapped to the coding sequence of a highly conserved gene, suppressor of cytokine signalling 2 (Socs2). The frequency of the SNP associated with increased SCC was 21.7% and the Socs2 genotype explained 12% of the variance of the trait. The point mutation induces the p.R96C substitution in the SH2 functional domain of SOCS2 i.e. the binding site of the protein to various ligands, as well-established for the growth hormone receptor GHR. Using surface plasmon resonance we showed that the p.R96C point mutation completely abrogates SOCS2 binding affinity for the phosphopeptide of GHR. Additionally, the size, weight and milk production in p.R96C homozygote sheep, were significantly increased by 24%, 18%, and 4.4%, respectively, when compared to wild type sheep, supporting the view that the point mutation causes a loss of SOCS2 functional activity. Altogether these results provide strong evidence for a causal mutation controlling SCC in sheep and highlight the major role of SOCS2 as a tradeoff between the host's inflammatory response to mammary infections, and body growth and milk production, which are all mediated by the JAK/STAT signaling pathway.

  5. Size Matters

    PubMed Central

    Long, Kimberly; Abuelenen, Toaa; Pava, Libia; Bastille, Maya

    2011-01-01

    We tallied the number of possible mutant amino acids in proteins thought to be inactivated early in tumorigenesis and in proteins thought to be inactivated late in tumorigenesis, respectively. Proteins thought to be inactivated early in tumorigenesis, on average, have a greater number of alternative, mutant possibilities, which raises the possibility that the sequential order of mutations associated with cancer development reflects the random chance, throughout life, of a mutagen inactivating a larger versus a smaller target. The hypothesis that the temporal order of genetic changes in cancer reflects mutagen target sizes leads to novel considerations of 1) the mechanisms of the acquisition of cancer hallmarks and 2) cancer screening strategies. PMID:22701759

  6. Platelet size in man.

    PubMed

    Paulus, J M

    1975-09-01

    The shape and parameters of platelet size distributions were studied in 50 normal persons and 97 patients in order to test the proposed thesis that platelet size heterogeneity results mainly from aging in the circulation. This thesis was contradicted (1) by size distributions of age-homogeneous, newly-born cell populations which were lognormal with increased (instead of decreased) dispersion of volumes and (2) by the macrothrombocytosis found in some populations with normal age distribution. For these reasons, thrombocytopoiesis appeared to play the major role in determining platelet size. A model was built in which the volume variation of platelet territories due to megakaryocyte growth and membrane demarcation at each step of maturation was a random proportion of the previous value of the volume. This model explains the lognormal shape of both newborn and circulating platelet size distributions. It also implies that (1) the mean and standard deviation of platelet logvolumes depend on the rates of volume change of the individual platelet territories (growth rate minus demarcation rate) as well as on megakaryocyte maturation time; (2) platelet hyperdestruction causes an increase in the mean and dispersion of the rates of territory volume change; (3) Mediterranean macrothrombocytosis and some hereditary macrothrombocytotic thrombocytopenias or dysthrombocytopoieses reflect a diminished rate of territory demarcation, and (4) platelet size heterogeneity is caused mainly by the variations in territory growth and demarcation and not by aging in the circulation.

  7. Lasers of All Sizes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Balcou, Philippe; Forget, Sébastien Robert-Philip, Isabelle

    2015-10-01

    * Introduction * The Laser in All Its Forms * Gas lasers * Dye lasers * Solid-state lasers * Lasers for Every Taste * The rise of lasers * Lasers of all sizes * The colors of the rainbow... and beyond * Shorter and shorter lasers * Increasingly powerful lasers * Lasers: A Universal Tool? * Cutting, welding, and cleaning * Communicating * Treating illnesses * Measuring * Supplying energy? * Entertaining * Understanding * Conclusion

  8. Is cell size a spandrel?

    PubMed Central

    Amir, Ariel

    2017-01-01

    All organisms control the size of their cells. We focus here on the question of size regulation in bacteria, and suggest that the quantitative laws governing cell size and its dependence on growth rate may arise as byproducts of a regulatory mechanism which evolved to support multiple DNA replication forks. In particular, we show that the increase of bacterial cell size during Lenski’s long-term evolution experiments is a natural outcome of this proposal. This suggests that, in the context of evolution, cell size may be a 'spandrel' DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.7554/eLife.22186.001 PMID:28102818

  9. The Size of Pluto

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tholen, David J.

    2014-11-01

    The presence of a thin atmosphere around Pluto prevents the stellar occultation method from probing all the way down to the surface of Pluto. As such, the most accurate method for measuring the size of Pluto is fitting the mutual event photometry from 1985 to 1990. Previous fits solved for not only the size of Pluto, but also the size and orbit of Charon. Since that era, the size and orbit of Charon have been determined independently and more accurately via other means. Stellar occultation measurements have established the diameter of Charon as 1212 km, while the orbit of Charon has been determined via direct images obtained with the Hubble Space Telescope over a period of two decades. By imposing the known values for the size and orbit of Charon on the fits to the mutual event photometry, a new size for Pluto can be derived with considerably fewer free parameters. To perform this fit, the extensive set of mutual event photometry acquired at Mauna Kea Observatory was utilized. A fit to all the data yields a diameter for Pluto of 2317 km. To avoid the question of limb darkening on Pluto and the effect of albedo variation over the surface of Pluto, even fewer free parameters can be solved for by restricting attention to just the superior mutual events, during which Charon was behind Pluto. In this case the diameter of Pluto increases to 2379 km. Work is currently being done to determine how weighting of the data affects the result. The true value will become known in a few months when New Horizons flies past Pluto. These fits also show that there is still room for improvement in the orbit of Charon.

  10. Mycorrhizal colonization does not affect tolerance to defoliation of an annual herb in different light availability and soil fertility treatments but increases flower size in light-rich environments.

    PubMed

    Aguilar-Chama, Ana; Guevara, Roger

    2012-01-01

    Heterogeneous distribution of resources in most plant populations results in a mosaic of plant physiological responses tending to maximize plant fitness. This includes plant responses to trophic interactions such as herbivory and mycorrhizal symbiosis which are concurrent in most plants. We explored fitness costs of 50% manual defoliation and mycorrhizal inoculation in Datura stramonium at different light availability and soil fertility environments in a greenhouse experiment. Overall, we showed that non-inoculated and mycorrhiza-inoculated plants did not suffer from 50% manual defoliation in all the tested combinations of light availability and soil fertility treatments, while soil nutrients and light availability predominately affected plant responses to the mycorrhizal inoculation. Fifty percent defoliation had a direct negative effect on reproductive traits whereas mycorrhiza-inoculated plants produced larger flowers than non-inoculated plants when light was not a limiting factor. Although D. stramonium is a facultative selfing species, other investigations had shown clear advantages of cross-pollination in this species; therefore, the effects of mycorrhizal inoculation on flower size observed in this study open new lines of inquiry for our understanding of plant responses to trophic interactions. Also in this study, we detected shifts in the limiting resources affecting plant responses to trophic interactions.

  11. The Synthetic Triterpenoid RTA 405 (CDDO-EA) Halts Progression of Liver Fibrosis and Reduces Hepatocellular Carcinoma Size Resulting in Increased Survival in an Experimental Model of Chronic Liver Injury

    PubMed Central

    Getachew, Yonas; Cusimano, Frank A.; Gopal, Purva; Reisman, Scott A.; Shay, Jerry W.

    2016-01-01

    Patients with cirrhosis have an increased risk of developing liver cancer and a higher rate of mortality. Cirrhosis currently has no known cure, and patients may benefit from new agents aimed at alleviating their complications and slowing down the rate of disease progression. Therefore, the effects of the orally bioavailable synthetic triterpenoid 2-cyano-3,12-dioxooleana- 1,9(11)-dien-28-oate-ethyl amide (CDDO-EA, RTA 405), which has potent antioxidative and antiinflammatory properties, was evaluated in a chronic carbon tetrachloride (CCl4)-induced model of liver cirrhosis and hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC). Mice were injected with CCl4 (to induce fibrosis and cirrhosis) or placebo biweekly for 12 weeks followed by CDDO-EA in the diet for 18 weeks with continued biweekly injections of CCl4. Chronic CCl4 administration resulted in cirrhosis, ascites, and HCC formation, associated with increased serum transforming growth factor-β1, hepatic hydroxyproline content, and increased serum bilirubin. CDDO-EA, whose administration commenced after establishment of liver fibrosis, decreased liver fibrosis progression, serum bilirubin, ascites, and HCC formation and markedly increased overall survival. CDDO-EA also attenuated -TNFα (tumor necrosis factor-α), α-SMA (alpha smooth muscle actin), augmented -IL-10 levels, and improved histologic and serologic markers of fibrosis. Conclusions: CDDO-EA mitigates the progression of liver fibrosis induced by chronic CCl4 administration, which is associated with the induction of antifibrogenic genes and suppression of profibrogenic genes. PMID:26443840

  12. Asteroid sizes and albedos

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Morrison, D.

    1977-01-01

    The radiometric method of determining asteroid diameters is described, and a synthesis of radiometric and polarimetric measurements of the diameters and geometric albedos of a total of 187 asteroids is presented. An analysis is offered of the size distributions of different albedo classes down to 80-km diameter for the entire main asteroid belt (2.0-3.5 AU). The distribution of albedos is found to be strongly bimodal, with mean albedos for the C and S group of 0.035 and 0.15, respectively. The C asteroids outnumber the S asteroids at all sizes and all values of semimajor axis, with the proportion of C asteroids increasing from a little over half inside 2.5 AU to more than 95% beyond 3.0 AU. Other aspects of the distribution of C, S, and M asteroids are discussed, and the total mass of main-belt asteroids larger than 70 km is estimated.

  13. Size Effect in Continuum Modeling

    SciTech Connect

    Lu, Wei-Yang; James W. Foulk; Huestis, Edwin M.; Connelly, Kevin; Song, Bo; Yang, Nancy Y. C.

    2008-09-01

    The mechanical properties of some materials (Cu, Ni, Ag, etc.) have been shown to develop strong dependence on the geometric dimensions, resulting in a size effect. Several theories have been proposed to model size effects, but have been based on very few experiments conducted at appropriate scales. Some experimental results implied that size effects are caused by increasing strain gradients and have been used to confirm many strain gradient theories. On the other hand, some recent experiments show that a size effect exists in the absence of strain gradients. This report describes a brief analytical and experimental study trying to clarify the material and experimental issues surrounding the most influential size-effect experiments by Fleck et al (1994). This effort is to understand size effects intended to further develop predictive models.

  14. The High Efficiency of Photosystem I in the Green Alga Chlamydomonas reinhardtii Is Maintained after the Antenna Size Is Substantially Increased by the Association of Light-harvesting Complexes II*

    PubMed Central

    Le Quiniou, Clotilde; van Oort, Bart; Drop, Bartlomiej; van Stokkum, Ivo H. M.; Croce, Roberta

    2015-01-01

    Photosystems (PS) I and II activities depend on their light-harvesting capacity and trapping efficiency, which vary in different environmental conditions. For optimal functioning, these activities need to be balanced. This is achieved by redistribution of excitation energy between the two photosystems via the association and disassociation of light-harvesting complexes (LHC) II, in a process known as state transitions. Here we study the effect of LHCII binding to PSI on its absorption properties and trapping efficiency by comparing time-resolved fluorescence kinetics of PSI-LHCI and PSI-LHCI-LHCII complexes of Chlamydomonas reinhardtii. PSI-LHCI-LHCII of C. reinhardtii is the largest PSI supercomplex isolated so far and contains seven Lhcbs, in addition to the PSI core and the nine Lhcas that compose PSI-LHCI, together binding ∼320 chlorophylls. The average decay time for PSI-LHCI-LHCII is ∼65 ps upon 400 nm excitation (15 ps slower than PSI-LHCI) and ∼78 ps upon 475 nm excitation (27 ps slower). The transfer of excitation energy from LHCII to PSI-LHCI occurs in ∼60 ps. This relatively slow transfer, as compared with that from LHCI to the PSI core, suggests loose connectivity between LHCII and PSI-LHCI. Despite the relatively slow transfer, the overall decay time of PSI-LHCI-LHCII remains fast enough to assure a 96% trapping efficiency, which is only 1.4% lower than that of PSI-LHCI, concomitant with an increase of the absorption cross section of 47%. This indicates that, at variance with PSII, the design of PSI allows for a large increase of its light-harvesting capacities. PMID:26504081

  15. The High Efficiency of Photosystem I in the Green Alga Chlamydomonas reinhardtii Is Maintained after the Antenna Size Is Substantially Increased by the Association of Light-harvesting Complexes II.

    PubMed

    Le Quiniou, Clotilde; van Oort, Bart; Drop, Bartlomiej; van Stokkum, Ivo H M; Croce, Roberta

    2015-12-18

    Photosystems (PS) I and II activities depend on their light-harvesting capacity and trapping efficiency, which vary in different environmental conditions. For optimal functioning, these activities need to be balanced. This is achieved by redistribution of excitation energy between the two photosystems via the association and disassociation of light-harvesting complexes (LHC) II, in a process known as state transitions. Here we study the effect of LHCII binding to PSI on its absorption properties and trapping efficiency by comparing time-resolved fluorescence kinetics of PSI-LHCI and PSI-LHCI-LHCII complexes of Chlamydomonas reinhardtii. PSI-LHCI-LHCII of C. reinhardtii is the largest PSI supercomplex isolated so far and contains seven Lhcbs, in addition to the PSI core and the nine Lhcas that compose PSI-LHCI, together binding ∼ 320 chlorophylls. The average decay time for PSI-LHCI-LHCII is ∼ 65 ps upon 400 nm excitation (15 ps slower than PSI-LHCI) and ∼ 78 ps upon 475 nm excitation (27 ps slower). The transfer of excitation energy from LHCII to PSI-LHCI occurs in ∼ 60 ps. This relatively slow transfer, as compared with that from LHCI to the PSI core, suggests loose connectivity between LHCII and PSI-LHCI. Despite the relatively slow transfer, the overall decay time of PSI-LHCI-LHCII remains fast enough to assure a 96% trapping efficiency, which is only 1.4% lower than that of PSI-LHCI, concomitant with an increase of the absorption cross section of 47%. This indicates that, at variance with PSII, the design of PSI allows for a large increase of its light-harvesting capacities.

  16. Targeted taste cell-specific overexpression of brain-derived neurotrophic factor in adult taste buds elevates phosphorylated TrkB protein levels in taste cells, increases taste bud size, and promotes gustatory innervation.

    PubMed

    Nosrat, Irina V; Margolskee, Robert F; Nosrat, Christopher A

    2012-05-11

    Brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) is the most potent neurotrophic factor in the peripheral taste system during embryonic development. It is also expressed in adult taste buds. There is a lack of understanding of the role of BDNF in the adult taste system. To address this, we generated novel transgenic mice in which transgene expression was driven by an α-gustducin promoter coupling BDNF expression to the postnatal expression of gustducin in taste cells. Immunohistochemistry revealed significantly stronger BDNF labeling in taste cells of high BDNF-expressing mouse lines compared with controls. We show that taste buds in these mice are significantly larger and have a larger number of taste cells compared with controls. To examine whether innervation was affected in Gust-BDNF mice, we used antibodies to neural cell adhesion molecule (NCAM) and ATP receptor P2X3. The total density of general innervation and specifically the gustatory innervation was markedly increased in high BDNF-expressing mice compared with controls. TrkB and NCAM gene expression in laser capture microdissected taste epithelia were significantly up-regulated in these mice. Up-regulation of TrkB transcripts in taste buds and elevated taste cell-specific TrkB phosphorylation in response to increased BDNF levels indicate that BDNF controls the expression and activation of its high affinity receptor in taste cells. This demonstrates a direct taste cell function for BDNF. BDNF also orchestrates and maintains taste bud innervation. We propose that the Gust-BDNF transgenic mouse models can be employed to further dissect the specific roles of BDNF in the adult taste system.

  17. Size Matters: Individual Variation in Ectotherm Growth and Asymptotic Size

    PubMed Central

    King, Richard B.

    2016-01-01

    Body size, and, by extension, growth has impacts on physiology, survival, attainment of sexual maturity, fecundity, generation time, and population dynamics, especially in ectotherm animals that often exhibit extensive growth following attainment of sexual maturity. Frequently, growth is analyzed at the population level, providing useful population mean growth parameters but ignoring individual variation that is also of ecological and evolutionary significance. Our long-term study of Lake Erie Watersnakes, Nerodia sipedon insularum, provides data sufficient for a detailed analysis of population and individual growth. We describe population mean growth separately for males and females based on size of known age individuals (847 captures of 769 males, 748 captures of 684 females) and annual growth increments of individuals of unknown age (1,152 males, 730 females). We characterize individual variation in asymptotic size based on repeated measurements of 69 males and 71 females that were each captured in five to nine different years. The most striking result of our analyses is that asymptotic size varies dramatically among individuals, ranging from 631–820 mm snout-vent length in males and from 835–1125 mm in females. Because female fecundity increases with increasing body size, we explore the impact of individual variation in asymptotic size on lifetime reproductive success using a range of realistic estimates of annual survival. When all females commence reproduction at the same age, lifetime reproductive success is greatest for females with greater asymptotic size regardless of annual survival. But when reproduction is delayed in females with greater asymptotic size, lifetime reproductive success is greatest for females with lower asymptotic size when annual survival is low. Possible causes of individual variation in asymptotic size, including individual- and cohort-specific variation in size at birth and early growth, warrant further investigation. PMID

  18. Size Matters: Individual Variation in Ectotherm Growth and Asymptotic Size.

    PubMed

    King, Richard B; Stanford, Kristin M; Jones, Peter C; Bekker, Kent

    2016-01-01

    Body size, and, by extension, growth has impacts on physiology, survival, attainment of sexual maturity, fecundity, generation time, and population dynamics, especially in ectotherm animals that often exhibit extensive growth following attainment of sexual maturity. Frequently, growth is analyzed at the population level, providing useful population mean growth parameters but ignoring individual variation that is also of ecological and evolutionary significance. Our long-term study of Lake Erie Watersnakes, Nerodia sipedon insularum, provides data sufficient for a detailed analysis of population and individual growth. We describe population mean growth separately for males and females based on size of known age individuals (847 captures of 769 males, 748 captures of 684 females) and annual growth increments of individuals of unknown age (1,152 males, 730 females). We characterize individual variation in asymptotic size based on repeated measurements of 69 males and 71 females that were each captured in five to nine different years. The most striking result of our analyses is that asymptotic size varies dramatically among individuals, ranging from 631-820 mm snout-vent length in males and from 835-1125 mm in females. Because female fecundity increases with increasing body size, we explore the impact of individual variation in asymptotic size on lifetime reproductive success using a range of realistic estimates of annual survival. When all females commence reproduction at the same age, lifetime reproductive success is greatest for females with greater asymptotic size regardless of annual survival. But when reproduction is delayed in females with greater asymptotic size, lifetime reproductive success is greatest for females with lower asymptotic size when annual survival is low. Possible causes of individual variation in asymptotic size, including individual- and cohort-specific variation in size at birth and early growth, warrant further investigation.

  19. Energy and institution size

    PubMed Central

    2017-01-01

    Why do institutions grow? Despite nearly a century of scientific effort, there remains little consensus on this topic. This paper offers a new approach that focuses on energy consumption. A systematic relation exists between institution size and energy consumption per capita: as energy consumption increases, institutions become larger. I hypothesize that this relation results from the interplay between technological scale and human biological limitations. I also show how a simple stochastic model can be used to link energy consumption with firm dynamics. PMID:28178339

  20. Appetite - increased

    MedlinePlus

    ... Have you noticed any other symptoms such as anxiety, palpitations , increased thirst , vomiting , frequent urination , or unintentional weight gain? Tests that may be done include: Blood tests, ...

  1. Container size influences snack food intake independently of portion size.

    PubMed

    Marchiori, David; Corneille, Olivier; Klein, Olivier

    2012-06-01

    While larger containers have been found to increase food intake, it is unclear whether this effect is driven by container size, portion size, or their combination, as these variables are usually confounded. The study was advertised as examining the effects of snack food consumption on information processing and participants were served M&M's for free consumption in individual cubicles while watching a TV show. Participants were served (1) a medium portion of M&M's in a small (n=30) or (2) in a large container (n=29), or (3) a large portion in a large container (n=29). The larger container increased intake by 129% (199 kcal) despite holding portion size constant, while controlling for different confounding variables. This research suggests that larger containers stimulate food intake over and above their impact on portion size.

  2. Sizing pumps for slurries

    SciTech Connect

    Akhtar, S.Z.

    1996-11-01

    Slurry characteristics have a significant impact on centrifugal pump performance. For instance, as particle size increases or the percent solids concentration increases, pump head and efficiency decrease. Therefore, before a slurry pump is selected, it is important to define the slurry characteristics as accurately as possible. The effect of the slurry characteristics on the head and efficiency of the centrifugal pump will be emphasized (the effect on flowrate is less significant). The effect of slurry characteristics is more predominant in smaller pumps (with smaller diameter impellers) than in larger pumps. The data and relationship between the various slurry parameters have been developed from correlations and nomographs published by pump vendors from their field data and test results. The information helps to avoid specifying an undersized pump/motor assembly for slurry service.

  3. Increasing the Size of the Effective United States Control Fleet

    DTIC Science & Technology

    2002-08-01

    Bottomed; DH – Double Hulled; SH – Single Hulled; SBT – Segregated Ballast Tanks 2. Esso Petrolera Argentina SRL ( Sociedad de Responsabilidad Limitada ...new name for Esso SAPA ( Sociedad Anonima Petrolera Argentin) Source: Appendix E Table 5.2, M.I.T. EUSC, Militarily Useful Tanker Fleet for June 2002 85

  4. On Effect Size

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Kelley, Ken; Preacher, Kristopher J.

    2012-01-01

    The call for researchers to report and interpret effect sizes and their corresponding confidence intervals has never been stronger. However, there is confusion in the literature on the definition of effect size, and consequently the term is used inconsistently. We propose a definition for effect size, discuss 3 facets of effect size (dimension,…

  5. Can selection on nest size from nest predation explain the latitudinal gradient in clutch size?

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Biancucci, L.; Martin, T.E.

    2010-01-01

    1. Latitudinal variation in clutch sizes of birds is a well described, but poorly understood pattern. Many hypotheses have been proposed, but few have been experimentally tested, and none have been universally accepted by researchers. 2. The nest size hypothesis posits that higher nest predation in the tropics favours selection for smaller nests and thereby constrains clutch size by shrinking available space for eggs and/or nestlings in the nest. We tested this hypothesis with an experiment in a tropical forest and a comparative study between temperate and tropical field sites. 3. Specifically, we tested if: (i) predation increased with nest size; (ii) tropical birds had smaller nests controlled for body size; and (iii) clutch size was explained by nest size controlled for body size. 4. Experimental swapping of nests of different sizes showed that nest predation increased with nest size in the tropical site. Moreover, nest predation rates were higher in species with larger nests in both sites. However, nest size, corrected for body mass and phylogeny, did not differ between sites and was not related to clutch size between sites. 5. Hence, nest predation can exert selection on nest size as predicted by the hypothesis. Nest size increased with adult body mass, such that adult size might indirectly influence reproductive success through effects on nest size and nest predation risk. Ultimately, however, selection from nest predation on nest size does not explain the smaller clutch sizes typical of the tropics.

  6. Body size evolution in Mesozoic birds.

    PubMed

    Hone, D W E; Dyke, G J; Haden, M; Benton, M J

    2008-03-01

    The tendency for the mean body size of taxa within a clade to increase through evolution (Cope's Rule) has been demonstrated in a number of terrestrial vertebrate groups. However, because avian body size is strongly constrained by flight, any increase in size during the evolution of this lineage should be limited - there is a maximum size that can be attained by a bird for it to be able to get off the ground. Contrary to previous interpretations of early avian evolution, we demonstrate an overall increase in body size across Jurassic and Cretaceous flying birds: taxon body size increases from the earliest Jurassic through to the end of the Cretaceous, across a time span of 70 Myr. Although evidence is limited that this change is directional, it is certainly nonrandom. Relative size increase occurred presumably as the result of an increase in variance as the avian clade diversified after the origin of flight: a progression towards larger body size is seen clearly within the clades Pygostylia and Ornithothoraces. In contrast, a decrease in body size characterizes the most crownward lineage Ornithuromorpha, the clade that includes all extant taxa, and potentially may explain the survival of these birds across the Cretaceous-Palaeogene boundary. As in all other dinosaurs, counter selection for small size is seen in some clades, whereas body size is increasing overall.

  7. Quantal and non-quantal color matches: failure of Grassmann's laws at short wavelengths.

    PubMed

    Pokorny, Joel; Smith, Vivianne C; Xu, Jun

    2012-02-01

    Previous studies of color matching found that Grassmann's laws are not obeyed in the short-wavelength region when the method of maximum saturation matching is compared with Maxwell matching. The first experiment evaluated whether the discrepancy might be due to a discrimination matching range asymmetry around either the saturated or desaturated matches and concluded that asymmetry is not the dominant factor. The second and third experiments were designed to evaluate postreceptoral mechanisms. The results pointed to the conjunction of three factors as being the principal cause of the failures of Grassmann's laws: the spatial inhomogeneity of the macular pigment distribution, the spatially dissimilar L/M-and S-cone distributions, and a change in the weightings of postreceptoral mechanisms mediating S-cone chromatic and L/M-cone luminance discriminations.

  8. Numerosity perception after size adaptation

    PubMed Central

    Zimmermann, Eckart; Fink, Gereon R.

    2016-01-01

    While some researchers propose the existence of a special numerosity sense, others challenge this view and argue that numerosity is derived from low-level features as density information. Here, we used size adaptation to manipulate the apparent area size of an object set without changing its physical density. After size adaptation, two probe patches were shown, each of which contained a specific numerosity of dots. Subjects were required to report, which probe patch contained more dots. Numerosity perception was compared between conditions where probe patches were adapted to appear smaller or larger. Size adaptation affected numerosity perception in a logarithmic fashion, increasing with the numerosity in the probe patch. No changes in density perception were found after size adaptation. Data suggest that size and density information play only a minor role in the estimation of low numerosities. In stark contrast, high numerosities strongly depend on size and density information. The data reinforce recent claims of separate mechanism for the perception of low and high numerosities. PMID:27650296

  9. Chronic activation of CB2 cannabinoid receptors in the hippocampus increases excitatory synaptic transmission

    PubMed Central

    Kim, Jimok; Li, Yong

    2015-01-01

    The roles of CB1 cannabinoid receptors in regulating neuronal activity have been extensively characterized. Although early studies show that CB1 receptors are present in the nervous system and CB2 cannabinoid receptors are in the immune system, recent evidence indicates that CB2 receptors are also expressed in the brain. Activation or blockade of CB2 receptors in vivo induces neuropsychiatric effects, but the cellular mechanisms of CB2 receptor function are unclear. The aim of this study is to determine how activation of CB2 receptors present in the hippocampus regulates synaptic function. Here, we show that when organotypic cultures of rodent hippocampal slices were treated with a CB2 receptor agonist (JWH133 or GP1a) for 7–10 days, quantal glutamate release became more frequent and spine density was increased via extracellular signal-regulated kinases. Chronic intraperitoneal injection of JWH133 into mice also increased excitatory synaptic transmission. These effects were blocked by a CB2 receptor antagonist (SR144528) or absent from hippocampal slices of CB2 receptor knock-out mice. This study reveals a novel cellular function of CB2 cannabinoid receptors in the hippocampus and provides insights into how cannabinoid receptor subtypes diversify the roles of cannabinoids in the brain. PMID:25504573

  10. Nanofluidic Size-Exclusion Chromatograph

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Feldman, Sabrina; Svehla, Danielle; Grunthaner, Frank; Feldman, Jason; Shakkottai, P.

    2004-01-01

    Efforts are under way to develop a nanofluidic size-exclusion chromatograph (SEC), which would be a compact, robust, lightweight instrument for separating molecules of interest according to their sizes and measuring their relative abundances in small samples. About as large as a deck of playing cards, the nanofluidic SEC would serve, in effect, as a laboratory on a chip that would perform the functions of a much larger, conventional, bench-top SEC and ancillary equipment, while consuming much less power and much smaller quantities of reagent and sample materials. Its compactness and low power demand would render it attractive for field applications in which, typically, it would be used to identify and quantitate a broad range of polar and nonpolar organic compounds in soil, ice, and water samples. Size-exclusion chromatography is a special case of high-performance liquid chromatography. In a conventional SEC, a sample plug is driven by pressure along a column packed with silica or polymer beads that contain uniform nanopores. The interstices between, and the pores in, the beads collectively constitute a size-exclusion network. Molecules follow different paths through the size-exclusion network, such that characteristic elution times can be related to sizes of molecules: basically, smaller molecules reach the downstream end of the column after the larger ones do because the smaller ones enter minor pores and stay there for a while, whereas the larger ones do not enter the pores. The volume accessible to molecules gradually diminishes as their size increases. All molecules bigger than a pore size elute together. For most substances, the elution times and sizes of molecules can be correlated directly with molecular weights. Hence, by measuring the flux of molecules arriving at the downstream end as a function of time, one can obtain a liquid mass spectrum for the molecules present in a sample over a broad range of molecular weights.

  11. Test of variational transition-state theory and multidimensional semiclassical transmission coefficient methods against accurate quantal rate constants for H + H/sub 2//HD, D + H/sub 2/, and O + H/sub 2//D/sub 2//HD, including intra- and intermolecular kinetic isotope effects

    SciTech Connect

    Garrett, B.C.; Truhlar, D.G.; Schatz, G.C.

    1986-01-01

    Rate constants and kinetic isotope effects for the title reactions were calculated using accurate quantum-dynamical methods, and used to test the accuracy of corresponding rate constants from conventional and variational transition-state theory. The quantum-dynamical rate constants are estimated to be within 35% of the exact rate constants for the potential energy surfaces chosen for this comparison. For all the reactions considered, the conventional and variational transition-state theory rate constants with unit transmission coefficient are found to be very close to each other (better than 7%), but in poor agreement with the accurate quantum results (off by factors of 6-22 at 300K). This indicates that although variational effects are small, tunneling makes a very important contribution to the rate constants, and it is found that the tunneling contribution is described quantitatively for all the reactions considered using the least-action ground state (LAG) transmission coefficient. The combination of improved canonical variational theory (ICVT) and LAG yields rate constants that have an average error (considering all the reactions and temperatures studied) of only 15% compared to the accurate quantal rate constants, and in only one case (D + H/sub 2/ at 200K) does the ICVT/LAG rate constant differ by more than 35% from the accurate value. The comparison of ICVT/LAG kinetic isotope effects is found to be similarly good, with worst comparisons occurring for intramolecular (X+HD) isotope ratios.

  12. Sample size calculations.

    PubMed

    Noordzij, Marlies; Dekker, Friedo W; Zoccali, Carmine; Jager, Kitty J

    2011-01-01

    The sample size is the number of patients or other experimental units that need to be included in a study to answer the research question. Pre-study calculation of the sample size is important; if a sample size is too small, one will not be able to detect an effect, while a sample that is too large may be a waste of time and money. Methods to calculate the sample size are explained in statistical textbooks, but because there are many different formulas available, it can be difficult for investigators to decide which method to use. Moreover, these calculations are prone to errors, because small changes in the selected parameters can lead to large differences in the sample size. This paper explains the basic principles of sample size calculations and demonstrates how to perform such a calculation for a simple study design.

  13. Size structures sensory hierarchy in ocean life

    PubMed Central

    Martens, Erik A.; Wadhwa, Navish; Jacobsen, Nis S.; Lindemann, Christian; Andersen, Ken H.; Visser, André

    2015-01-01

    Survival in aquatic environments requires organisms to have effective means of collecting information from their surroundings through various sensing strategies. In this study, we explore how sensing mode and range depend on body size. We find a hierarchy of sensing modes determined by body size. With increasing body size, a larger battery of modes becomes available (chemosensing, mechanosensing, vision, hearing and echolocation, in that order) while the sensing range also increases. This size-dependent hierarchy and the transitions between primary sensory modes are explained on the grounds of limiting factors set by physiology and the physical laws governing signal generation, transmission and reception. We theoretically predict the body size limits for various sensory modes, which align well with size ranges found in literature. The treatise of all ocean life, from unicellular organisms to whales, demonstrates how body size determines available sensing modes, and thereby acts as a major structuring factor of aquatic life. PMID:26378212

  14. Industrial-size photobioreactors

    SciTech Connect

    Ogbonna, J.C.; Tanaka, Hideo

    1997-07-01

    Photosynthetic microorganisms can be engineered to produce pharmaceuticals, chemical intermediates, and clean energy (e.g., hydrogen). They also fix atmospheric carbon dioxide--an important consideration as increased levels of carbon dioxide are linked to global warming. As a first step in the photobioreactor design, the authors investigated the relative significance of the exponential and the linear growth rates during light-limited batch cultivation of photosynthetic cells using various types and sizes of photobioreactors. They also developed a mathematical model that could explain the existence of the various growth phases during the light-limited batch cultivation. Because the cost of electricity is high, use of solar energy is obviously desirable, because it is abundant and free. However, an appropriate method for harvesting the solar energy and distributing the light inside the photobioreactor is required. A light collection device consisting of Fresnel lenses is used to collect the solar light, which is then distributed inside the reactor through the optical fibers. Because the position of the sun changes continuously, the device is equipped with a light-tracking sensor so that the lenses rotate with the position of the sun. Because of diurnal and seasonal changes in the sunlight intensity, however, high volumetric productivity is difficult to achieve if only solar energy is used for reactor illumination. For maximum productivity, therefore, the solar light should be supplemented with an artificial light source at night and on cloudy days.

  15. Prey size diversity hinders biomass trophic transfer and predator size diversity promotes it in planktonic communities.

    PubMed

    García-Comas, Carmen; Sastri, Akash R; Ye, Lin; Chang, Chun-Yi; Lin, Fan-Sian; Su, Min-Sian; Gong, Gwo-Ching; Hsieh, Chih-Hao

    2016-02-10

    Body size exerts multiple effects on plankton food-web interactions. However, the influence of size structure on trophic transfer remains poorly quantified in the field. Here, we examine how the size diversity of prey (nano-microplankton) and predators (mesozooplankton) influence trophic transfer efficiency (using biomass ratio as a proxy) in natural marine ecosystems. Our results support previous studies on single trophic levels: transfer efficiency decreases with increasing prey size diversity and is enhanced with greater predator size diversity. We further show that communities with low nano-microplankton size diversity and high mesozooplankton size diversity tend to occur in warmer environments with low nutrient concentrations, thus promoting trophic transfer to higher trophic levels in those conditions. Moreover, we reveal an interactive effect of predator and prey size diversities: the positive effect of predator size diversity becomes influential when prey size diversity is high. Mechanistically, the negative effect of prey size diversity on trophic transfer may be explained by unicellular size-based metabolic constraints as well as trade-offs between growth and predation avoidance with size, whereas increasing predator size diversity may enhance diet niche partitioning and thus promote trophic transfer. These findings provide insights into size-based theories of ecosystem functioning, with implications for ecosystem predictive models.

  16. Size effect in thermoelectric materials

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mao, Jun; Liu, Zihang; Ren, Zhifeng

    2016-12-01

    Thermoelectric applications have attracted increasing interest recently due to its capability of converting waste heat into electricity without hazardous emissions. Materials with enhanced thermoelectric performance have been reported in recent two decades. The revival of research for thermoelectric materials began in early 1990s when the size effect is considered. Low-dimensional materials with exceptionally high thermoelectric figure of merit (ZT) have been presented, which broke the limit of ZT around unity. The idea of size effect in thermoelectric materials even inspired the later nanostructuring and band engineering strategies, which effectively enhanced the thermoelectric performance of bulk materials. In this overview, the size effect in low-dimensional thermoelectric materials is reviewed. We first discuss the quantum confinement effect on carriers, including the enhancement of electronic density of states, semimetal to semiconductor transition and carrier pocket engineering. Then, the effect of assumptions on theoretical calculations is presented. Finally, the effect of phonon confinement and interface scattering on lattice thermal conductivity is discussed.

  17. Particle-Size Analysis

    SciTech Connect

    Gee, Glendon W. ); Or, Dani; J.H. Dane and G.C. Topp

    2002-11-01

    Book Chapter describing methods of particle-size analysis for soils. Includes a variety of classification schemes. Standard methods for size distributions using pipet and hydrometer techniques are described. New laser-light scattering and related techniques are discussed. Complete with updated references.

  18. The Class Size Debate.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Mishel, Lawrence, Ed.; Rothstein, Richard, Ed.

    This collection of papers debates the merits of smaller class sizes and research methods used to evaluate the efficacy of this education reform measure. Four chapters focus on (1) "Understanding the Magnitude and Effect of Class Size on Student Achievement" (Alan B. Krueger), which discusses expenditures per student and economic criterion; (2)…

  19. Modeling Raindrop Size

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Johnson, Roger W.; Kliche, Donna V.; Smith, Paul L.

    2015-01-01

    Being able to characterize the size of raindrops is useful in a number of fields including meteorology, hydrology, agriculture and telecommunications. Associated with this article are data sets containing surface (i.e. ground-level) measurements of raindrop size from two different instruments and two different geographical locations. Students may…

  20. Cell-Size Control

    PubMed Central

    Amodeo, Amanda A.; Skotheim, Jan M.

    2015-01-01

    Cells of a given type maintain a characteristic cell size to function efficiently in their ecological or organismal context. They achieve this through the regulation of growth rates or by actively sensing size and coupling this signal to cell division. We focus this review on potential size-sensing mechanisms, including geometric, external cue, and titration mechanisms. Mechanisms that titrate proteins against DNA are of particular interest because they are consistent with the robust correlation of DNA content and cell size. We review the literature, which suggests that titration mechanisms may underlie cell-size sensing in Xenopus embryos, budding yeast, and Escherichia coli, whereas alternative mechanisms may function in fission yeast. PMID:26254313

  1. Size-energy relationships in ecological communities.

    PubMed

    Sewall, Brent J; Freestone, Amy L; Hawes, Joseph E; Andriamanarina, Ernest

    2013-01-01

    Hypotheses that relate body size to energy use are of particular interest in community ecology and macroecology because of their potential to facilitate quantitative predictions about species interactions and to clarify complex ecological patterns. One prominent size-energy hypothesis, the energetic equivalence hypothesis, proposes that energy use from shared, limiting resources by populations or size classes of foragers will be independent of body size. Alternative hypotheses propose that energy use will increase with body size, decrease with body size, or peak at an intermediate body size. Despite extensive study, however, size-energy hypotheses remain controversial, due to a lack of directly-measured data on energy use, a tendency to confound distinct scaling relationships, and insufficient attention to the ecological contexts in which predicted relationships are likely to occur. Our goal, therefore, was to directly evaluate size-energy hypotheses while clarifying how results would differ with alternate methods and assumptions. We comprehensively tested size-energy hypotheses in a vertebrate frugivore guild in a tropical forest in Madagascar. Our test of size-energy hypotheses, which is the first to examine energy intake directly, was consistent with the energetic equivalence hypothesis. This finding corresponds with predictions of metabolic theory and models of energy distribution in ecological communities, which imply that body size does not confer an advantage in competition for energy among populations or size classes of foragers. This result was robust to different assumptions about energy regulation. Our results from direct energy measurement, however, contrasted with those obtained with conventional methods of indirect inference from size-density relationships, suggesting that size-density relationships do not provide an appropriate proxy for size-energy relationships as has commonly been assumed. Our research also provides insights into mechanisms

  2. Bust size and hitchhiking: a field study.

    PubMed

    Guéguen, Nicolas

    2007-12-01

    To test the effect of a woman's bust size on the rate of help offered, 1200 male and female French motorists were tested in a hitchhiking situation. A 20-yr.-old female confederate wore a bra which permitted variation in the size of cup to vary her breast size. She stood by the side of a road frequented by hitchhikers and held out her thumb to catch a ride. Increasing the bra-size of the female-hitchhiker was significantly associated with an increase in number of male drivers, but not female drivers, who stopped to offer a ride.

  3. Network Structure and City Size

    PubMed Central

    Levinson, David

    2012-01-01

    Network structure varies across cities. This variation may yield important knowledge about how the internal structure of the city affects its performance. This paper systematically compares a set of surface transportation network structure variables (connectivity, hierarchy, circuity, treeness, entropy, accessibility) across the 50 largest metropolitan areas in the United States. A set of scaling parameters are discovered to show how network size and structure vary with city size. These results suggest that larger cities are physically more inter-connected. Hypotheses are presented as to why this might obtain. This paper then consistently measures and ranks access to jobs across 50 US metropolitan areas. It uses that accessibility measure, along with network structure variables and city size to help explain journey-to-work time and auto mode share in those cities. A 1 percent increase in accessibility reduces average metropolitan commute times by about 90 seconds each way. A 1 percent increase in network connectivity reduces commute time by 0.1 percent. A 1 percent increase in accessibility results in a 0.0575 percent drop in auto mode share, while a 1 percent increase in treeness reduces auto mode share by 0.061 percent. Use of accessibility and network structure measures is important for planning and evaluating the performance of network investments and land use changes. PMID:22253764

  4. Shape and size discrimination compared.

    PubMed

    Nachmias, Jacob

    2011-02-23

    Observers presented with pairs of figures differing in area (SIZE) or aspect ratio (SHAPE) spontaneously make use of both height and width differences. whether or not they are forced to do so by between-interval jittering or even instructed to do so. SHAPE discrimination is considerably better than SIZE discrimination. The superiority of SHAPE discrimination is probably due to partial correlation between the encoding noise of height and width of a figure. Discrimination of height differences is seemingly increased (decreased) by negatively (positively) correlated width differences, relative to leaving width unchanged. This is true whether the different types of trials are presented in separate blocks or intermixed. Perhaps SIZE and SHAPE comparisons are always made and their decision variables are optimally combined. The difference between SIZE and SHAPE discrimination is reduced, if not reversed, when figures are presented simultaneously rather than successively. This interaction between type of task and mode of presentation, may be due to the increased amount of correlation between test and standard figures of the encoding noise common to the two dimensions of each figure.

  5. Evidence for the higher importance of signal size over body size in aposematic signaling in insects.

    PubMed

    Remmel, Triinu; Tammarub, Toomas

    2011-01-01

    To understand the evolution of warning coloration, it is important to distinguish between different aspects of conspicuous color patterns. As an example, both pattern element size and body size of prey have been shown to enhance the effectiveness of warning signals. However, it is unclear whether the effect of body size is merely a side effect of proportionally increasing pattern elements, or if there is an effect of body size per se. These possibilities were evaluated by offering different sized artificial caterpillars with either fixed or proportionally increasing aposematic color signal elements to wild great tits, Parus major L. (Passeriformes: Paridae). The birds' hesitation time to attack each "caterpillar" was used as a measure of the warning effect. The hesitation time showed a significant, positive size-dependence with the caterpillars whose pattern elements increased proportionally with their body size. In contrast, no size dependence was found in the larvae with fixed-size signal elements. Such a difference in mortality curves is consistent with the idea that pattern element size is a more important aspect than body size in enhancing a warning signal. Since no evidence of an effect of body size per se on signal efficiency was found, this study does not support the hypothesis that aposematic insects gain more from large size than cryptic ones.

  6. Intercomparison of 15 aerodynamic particle size spectrometers (APS 3321): uncertainties in particle sizing and number size distribution

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pfeifer, S.; Müller, T.; Weinhold, K.; Zikova, N.; Santos, S.; Marinoni, A.; Bischof, O. F.; Kykal, C.; Ries, L.; Meinhardt, F.; Aalto, P.; Mihalopoulos, N.; Wiedensohler, A.

    2015-11-01

    Aerodynamic particle size spectrometers are a well-established method to measure number size distributions of coarse mode particles in the atmosphere. Quality assurance is essential for atmospheric observational aerosol networks to obtain comparable results with known uncertainties. In a laboratory study within the framework of ACTRIS (Aerosols, Clouds, and Trace gases Research Infrastructure Network), 15 aerodynamic particle size spectrometers (APS model 3321, TSI Inc., St. Paul, MN, USA) were compared with a focus on flow rates accuracy, particle sizing, and unit-to-unit variability of the particle number size distribution. Flow rate deviations were relatively small (within a few percent), while the sizing accuracy was found to be within 10 % compared to polystyrene latex (PSL) reference particles. The unit-to-unit variability in terms of the particle number size distribution during this study was within 10-20 % for particles in the range of 0.9 up to 3 μm, which is acceptable for atmospheric measurements. For particles smaller than that, the variability increased up to 60 %, probably caused by differences in the counting efficiencies of individual units. Number size distribution data for particles smaller than 0.9 μm in aerodynamic diameter should be only used with caution. For particles larger than 3 μm, the unit-to-unit variability increased as well. A possible reason is an insufficient sizing accuracy in combination with a steeply sloping particle number size distribution and the increasing uncertainty due to decreasing counting. This uncertainty of the particle number size distribution has especially to be considered if higher moments of the size distribution such as the particle volume or mass are calculated, which require the conversion of the aerodynamic diameter measured to a volume equivalent diameter. In order to perform a quantitative quality assurance, a traceable reference method for the particle number concentration in the size range 0.5-3

  7. Intercomparison of 15 aerodynamic particle size spectrometers (APS 3321): uncertainties in particle sizing and number size distribution

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pfeifer, Sascha; Müller, Thomas; Weinhold, Kay; Zikova, Nadezda; Martins dos Santos, Sebastiao; Marinoni, Angela; Bischof, Oliver F.; Kykal, Carsten; Ries, Ludwig; Meinhardt, Frank; Aalto, Pasi; Mihalopoulos, Nikolaos; Wiedensohler, Alfred

    2016-04-01

    Aerodynamic particle size spectrometers are a well-established method to measure number size distributions of coarse mode particles in the atmosphere. Quality assurance is essential for atmospheric observational aerosol networks to obtain comparable results with known uncertainties. In a laboratory study within the framework of ACTRIS (Aerosols, Clouds, and Trace gases Research Infrastructure Network), 15 aerodynamic particle size spectrometers (APS model 3321, TSI Inc., St. Paul, MN, USA) were compared with a focus on flow rates, particle sizing, and the unit-to-unit variability of the particle number size distribution. Flow rate deviations were relatively small (within a few percent), while the sizing accuracy was found to be within 10 % compared to polystyrene latex (PSL) reference particles. The unit-to-unit variability in terms of the particle number size distribution during this study was within 10 % to 20 % for particles in the range of 0.9 up to 3 µm, which is acceptable for atmospheric measurements. For particles smaller than that, the variability increased up to 60 %, probably caused by differences in the counting efficiencies of individual units. Number size distribution data for particles smaller than 0.9 µm in aerodynamic diameter should only be used with caution. For particles larger than 3 µm, the unit-to-unit variability increased as well. A possible reason is an insufficient sizing accuracy in combination with a steeply sloping particle number size distribution and the increasing uncertainty due to decreasing counting. Particularly this uncertainty of the particle number size distribution must be considered if higher moments of the size distribution such as the particle volume or mass are calculated, which require the conversion of the aerodynamic diameter measured to a volume equivalent diameter. In order to perform a quantitative quality assurance, a traceable reference method for the particle number concentration in the size range 0.5-3 µm

  8. Effective Population Sizes with Multiple Paternity

    PubMed Central

    Sugg, D. W.; Chesser, R. K.

    1994-01-01

    While the concept of effective population size is of obvious applicability to many questions in population genetics and conservation biology, its utility has suffered due to a lack of agreement among its various formulations. Often, mathematical formulations for effective sizes apply restrictive assumptions that limit their applicability. Herein, expressions for effective sizes of populations that account for mating tactics, biases in sex ratios, and differential dispersal rates (among other parameters) are developed. Of primary interest is the influence of multiple paternity on the maintenance of genetic variation in a population. In addition to the standard inbreeding and variance effective sizes, intragroup (coancestral) and intergroup effective sizes also are developed. Expressions for effective sizes are developed for the beginning of nonrandom gene exchanges (initial effective sizes), the transition of gene correlations (instantaneous effective sizes), and the steady-state (asymptotic effective size). Results indicate that systems of mating that incorporate more than one male mate per female increase all effective sizes above those expected from polygyny and monogamy. Instantaneous and asymptotic sizes can be expressed relative to the fixation indices. The parameters presented herein can be utilized in models of effective sizes for the study of evolutionary biology and conservation genetics. PMID:7982568

  9. Does size matter?

    SciTech Connect

    Carreras, B. A.; Newman, D. E.; Dobson, Ian

    2014-06-15

    Failures of the complex infrastructures society depends on having enormous human and economic cost that poses the question: Are there ways to optimize these systems to reduce the risks of failure? A dynamic model of one such system, the power transmission grid, is used to investigate the risk from failure as a function of the system size. It is found that there appears to be optimal sizes for such networks where the risk of failure is balanced by the benefit given by the size.

  10. The cost of large numbers of hypothesis tests on power, effect size and sample size.

    PubMed

    Lazzeroni, L C; Ray, A

    2012-01-01

    Advances in high-throughput biology and computer science are driving an exponential increase in the number of hypothesis tests in genomics and other scientific disciplines. Studies using current genotyping platforms frequently include a million or more tests. In addition to the monetary cost, this increase imposes a statistical cost owing to the multiple testing corrections needed to avoid large numbers of false-positive results. To safeguard against the resulting loss of power, some have suggested sample sizes on the order of tens of thousands that can be impractical for many diseases or may lower the quality of phenotypic measurements. This study examines the relationship between the number of tests on the one hand and power, detectable effect size or required sample size on the other. We show that once the number of tests is large, power can be maintained at a constant level, with comparatively small increases in the effect size or sample size. For example at the 0.05 significance level, a 13% increase in sample size is needed to maintain 80% power for ten million tests compared with one million tests, whereas a 70% increase in sample size is needed for 10 tests compared with a single test. Relative costs are less when measured by increases in the detectable effect size. We provide an interactive Excel calculator to compute power, effect size or sample size when comparing study designs or genome platforms involving different numbers of hypothesis tests. The results are reassuring in an era of extreme multiple testing.

  11. Particle Size Analysis.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Barth, Howard G.; Sun, Shao-Tang

    1989-01-01

    Presents a review of research focusing on scattering, elution techniques, electrozone sensing, filtration, centrifugation, comparison of techniques, data analysis, and particle size standards. The review covers the period 1986-1988. (MVL)

  12. The size of earthquakes

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Kanamori, H.

    1980-01-01

    How we should measure the size of an earthquake has been historically a very important, as well as a very difficult, seismological problem. For example, figure 1 shows the loss of life caused by earthquakes in recent times and clearly demonstrates that 1976 was the worst year for earthquake casualties in the 20th century. However, the damage caused by an earthquake is due not only to its physical size but also to other factors such as where and when it occurs; thus, figure 1 is not necessarily an accurate measure of the "size" of earthquakes in 1976. the point is that the physical process underlying an earthquake is highly complex; we therefore cannot express every detail of an earthquake by a simple straightforward parameter. Indeed, it would be very convenient if we could find a single number that represents the overall physical size of an earthquake. This was in fact the concept behind the Richter magnitude scale introduced in 1935. 

  13. Estimating Commit Sizes Efficiently

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hofmann, Philipp; Riehle, Dirk

    The quantitative analysis of software projects can provide insights that let us better understand open source and other software development projects. An important variable used in the analysis of software projects is the amount of work being contributed, the commit size. Unfortunately, post-facto, the commit size can only be estimated, not measured. This paper presents several algorithms for estimating the commit size. Our performance evaluation shows that simple, straightforward heuristics are superior to the more complex text-analysis-based algorithms. Not only are the heuristics significantly faster to compute, they also deliver more accurate results when estimating commit sizes. Based on this experience, we design and present an algorithm that improves on the heuristics, can be computed equally fast, and is more accurate than any of the prior approaches.

  14. Exploring Planet Sizes

    NASA Video Gallery

    This lesson combines a series of activities to compare models of the size of Earth to other planets and the distances to other planets. Activities highlight space missions to other planets in our s...

  15. Paper Sizes and Mathematics

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    de Mestre, Neville

    2007-01-01

    Reams of paper come in a standardised system of related sheet sizes. Most people are familiar with the international paper sizes A4, A3 and B4, but there are others. The ratio of the sides of any sheet in the series is such that if the paper is cut or folded in half on itself then the ratio of the sides remains unchanged. Due to this property of…

  16. Canine tooth size variability in primates.

    PubMed

    Beauchamp, G

    1989-01-01

    I present an analysis of canine tooth size variability in male and female primates. The coefficient of variation (CV = SD X 100/mean) as an index of canine size variability proved to be dependent on mean canine size in males and, to a lower extent, in females. Therefore, variability tends to increase with increasing values of mean canine size. Using residuals from the regression of log SD on log mean canine size in male and female primates, I analysed the contribution of diet, habitat and mating system to canine size variability. Habitat and mating system are known to influence to a certain extent the degree of sexual dimorphism in canine size. Given the well-known relationship between sexual dimorphism and phenotypic variability, it was suggested that these factors might influence variability in canine size. Everything else being equal, males of polygynous species are characterized by more variable canine sizes than males of monogamous species. Habitat and diet did not contribute to the level of variability observed in either males or females. It is proposed that a high level of variability in canine size may be related to the likelihood that enlarged canines evolved as a result of male-male competition for mates in polygynous species.

  17. Structural effect of size on interracial friendship.

    PubMed

    Cheng, Siwei; Xie, Yu

    2013-04-30

    Social contexts exert structural effects on individuals' social relationships, including interracial friendships. In this study, we posit that, net of group composition, total context size has a distinct effect on interracial friendship. Under the assumptions of (i) maximization of preference in choosing a friend, (ii) multidimensionality of preference, and (iii) preference for same-race friends, we conducted analyses using microsimulation that yielded three main findings. First, increased context size decreases the likelihood of forming an interracial friendship. Second, the size effect increases with the number of preference dimensions. Third, the size effect is diluted by noise, i.e., the random component affecting friendship formation. Analysis of actual friendship data among 4,745 American high school students yielded results consistent with the main conclusion that increased context size promotes racial segregation and discourages interracial friendship.

  18. Automated measurement of diatom size

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Spaulding, Sarah A.; Jewson, David H.; Bixby, Rebecca J.; Nelson, Harry; McKnight, Diane M.

    2012-01-01

    Size analysis of diatom populations has not been widely considered, but it is a potentially powerful tool for understanding diatom life histories, population dynamics, and phylogenetic relationships. However, measuring cell dimensions on a light microscope is a time-consuming process. An alternative technique has been developed using digital flow cytometry on a FlowCAM® (Fluid Imaging Technologies) to capture hundreds, or even thousands, of images of a chosen taxon from a single sample in a matter of minutes. Up to 30 morphological measures may be quantified through post-processing of the high resolution images. We evaluated FlowCAM size measurements, comparing them against measurements from a light microscope. We found good agreement between measurement of apical cell length in species with elongated, straight valves, including small Achnanthidium minutissimum (11-21 µm) and largeDidymosphenia geminata (87–137 µm) forms. However, a taxon with curved cells, Hannaea baicalensis (37–96 µm), showed differences of ~ 4 µm between the two methods. Discrepancies appear to be influenced by the choice of feret or geodesic measurement for asymmetric cells. We describe the operating conditions necessary for analysis of size distributions and present suggestions for optimal instrument conditions for size analysis of diatom samples using the FlowCAM. The increased speed of data acquisition through use of imaging flow cytometers like the FlowCAM is an essential step for advancing studies of diatom populations.

  19. Size-Dependent Elasticity of Nanocrystalline Titania

    SciTech Connect

    Chen, B.; Zhang, H; Dunphy-Guzman, K; Spagnoli, D; Kruger, M; Muthu, D; Kunz, M; Fakra, S; Hu, J; et. al.

    2009-01-01

    Synchrotron-based high-pressure x-ray diffraction measurements indicate that compressibility, a fundamental materials property, can have a size-specific minimum value. The bulk modulus of nanocrystalline titania has a maximum at particle size of 15 nm. This can be explained by dislocation behavior because very high dislocation contents can be achieved when shear stress induced within nanoparticles counters the repulsion between dislocations. As particle size decreases, compression increasingly generates dislocation networks (hardened by overlap of strain fields) that shield intervening regions from external pressure. However, when particles become too small to sustain high dislocation concentrations, elastic stiffening declines. The compressibility has a minimum at intermediate sizes.

  20. Structure Size Enhanced Histogram

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wesarg, Stefan; Kirschner, Matthias

    Direct volume visualization requires the definition of transfer functions (TFs) for the assignment of opacity and color. Multi-dimensional TFs are based on at least two image properties, and are specified by means of 2D histograms. In this work we propose a new type of a 2D histogram which combines gray value with information about the size of the structures. This structure size enhanced (SSE) histogram is an intuitive approach for representing anatomical features. Clinicians — the users we are focusing on — are much more familiar with selecting features by their size than by their gradient magnitude value. As a proof of concept, we employ the SSE histogram for the definition of two-dimensional TFs for the visualization of 3D MRI and CT image data.

  1. Biofuel manufacturing from woody biomass: effects of sieve size used in biomass size reduction.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Meng; Song, Xiaoxu; Deines, T W; Pei, Z J; Wang, Donghai

    2012-01-01

    Size reduction is the first step for manufacturing biofuels from woody biomass. It is usually performed using milling machines and the particle size is controlled by the size of the sieve installed on a milling machine. There are reported studies about the effects of sieve size on energy consumption in milling of woody biomass. These studies show that energy consumption increased dramatically as sieve size became smaller. However, in these studies, the sugar yield (proportional to biofuel yield) in hydrolysis of the milled woody biomass was not measured. The lack of comprehensive studies about the effects of sieve size on energy consumption in biomass milling and sugar yield in hydrolysis process makes it difficult to decide which sieve size should be selected in order to minimize the energy consumption in size reduction and maximize the sugar yield in hydrolysis. The purpose of this paper is to fill this gap in the literature. In this paper, knife milling of poplar wood was conducted using sieves of three sizes (1, 2, and 4 mm). Results show that, as sieve size increased, energy consumption in knife milling decreased and sugar yield in hydrolysis increased in the tested range of particle sizes.

  2. Morphological characteristics of blood cells in monitor lizards: is erythrocyte size linked to actual body size?

    PubMed

    Frýdlová, Petra; Hnízdo, Jan; Chylíková, Lenka; Simková, Olga; Cikánová, Veronika; Velenský, Petr; Frynta, Daniel

    2013-04-01

    Blood cell morphology and count are not uniform across species. Recently, between-species comparisons revealed that the size of red blood cells is associated with body size in some lizard taxa, and this finding was interpreted in the context of the metabolic theory. In the present study, we examined the numbers and the size of blood cells in 2 species of monitor lizards, the mangrove-dwelling monitor (Varanus indicus) and the savannah monitor (V. exanthematicus), and we compared these traits in individuals of different body size. The results revealed that during the course of ontogeny, the size of red blood cells increases with body mass. Because the mass-specific metabolic rate decreases with body size and the cell volume-to-surface ratio decreases with the cell size, changes in the erythrocyte size might be the result of oxygen transport adjustment.

  3. Marine reserves: size and age do matter.

    PubMed

    Claudet, Joachim; Osenberg, Craig W; Benedetti-Cecchi, Lisandro; Domenici, Paolo; García-Charton, José-Antonio; Pérez-Ruzafa, Angel; Badalamenti, Fabio; Bayle-Sempere, Just; Brito, Alberto; Bulleri, Fabio; Culioli, Jean-Michel; Dimech, Mark; Falcón, Jesús M; Guala, Ivan; Milazzo, Marco; Sánchez-Meca, Julio; Somerfield, Paul J; Stobart, Ben; Vandeperre, Frédéric; Valle, Carlos; Planes, Serge

    2008-05-01

    Marine reserves are widely used throughout the world to prevent overfishing and conserve biodiversity, but uncertainties remain about their optimal design. The effects of marine reserves are heterogeneous. Despite theoretical findings, empirical studies have previously found no effect of size on the effectiveness of marine reserves in protecting commercial fish stocks. Using 58 datasets from 19 European marine reserves, we show that reserve size and age do matter: Increasing the size of the no-take zone increases the density of commercial fishes within the reserve compared with outside; whereas the size of the buffer zone has the opposite effect. Moreover, positive effects of marine reserve on commercial fish species and species richness are linked to the time elapsed since the establishment of the protection scheme. The reserve size-dependency of the response to protection has strong implications for the spatial management of coastal areas because marine reserves are used for spatial zoning.

  4. Financing Class Size Reduction

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Achilles, C. M.

    2005-01-01

    Class size reduction has been shown to, among other things, improve academic achievement for all students and particularly for low-income and minority students. With the No Child Left Behind Act's heavy emphasis on scientifically based research, adequate yearly progress, and disaggregated results, one wonders why all children aren't enrolled in…

  5. Preference for newspaper size.

    PubMed

    Tsang, Steve N H; Hoffmann, Errol R; Chan, Alan H S

    2014-05-01

    The past few years has seen a change in the size of newspapers, with publishers moving to a smaller size format. Five 'standard' newspaper sizes are used in different countries: Broadsheet, Rhensch, Tabloid, Tall Tabloid and Berliner. These papers vary in both width and height of pages and hence there are implications for human reading comfort, which may be dependent on reading location such as on a lounge chair or on a train. Experiments were carried out to determine preferences for the different sizes and to relate these preferences to the geometric characteristics of the newspapers. For both comfortable and cramped/uncomfortable reading conditions, the rank order of preference for paper types was, from least to most-preferred, Broadsheet, Rhensch, Berliner, Tall Tabloid and Tabloid. Preferences were much stronger when determined in cramped/uncomfortable reading conditions, where most comparisons were significantly different. There was good correlation between participant ratings on several scales and preference, where most factors were related to comfort of holding and controlling the paper.

  6. Sizing Up What Matters.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    McCluskey, Neal

    "Smaller is better" is often the mantra of school leaders with regard to class size, while the benefits of smaller schools are ignored. Benefits of small classes seem obvious--teachers with fewer students could devote more time to each student. Conducted in 1985-89, Tennessee's Project STAR (Student/Teacher Achievement Ratio) found that…

  7. Adaptive size modification by dominant female meerkats.

    PubMed

    Russell, Andrew F; Carlson, Anne A; McIlrath, Grant M; Jordan, Neil R; Clutton-Brock, Tim

    2004-07-01

    In species of cooperative insects that live in large groups, selection for increased fecundity has led to the evolution of an increased body size among female reproductives, but whether this is also true of cooperative vertebrates is unknown. Among vertebrates, morphological modification of female breeders has only been documented in a single species; in naked mole rats (Heterocephalus glaber), acquisition of alpha status is associated with a significant increase in body size through an elongation of the lumbar vertebrae. Here we provide evidence of morphological modification among breeding females of a cooperative carnivore, the meerkat (Suricata suricatta), and demonstrate that this modification is likely to be adaptive. The same female meerkats were significantly larger when they were dominant than when they were subordinate. This increased body size was not explained by differences in age, foraging efficiency, or investment in offspring care, but may have arisen, in part, through increased levels of hormone that govern bone growth. Increases in body size are likely to result in fitness benefits, for large females delivered larger litters and had heavier offspring, both of which are known to correlate positively with measures of breeding success in meerkats. Our results suggest that the acquisition of alpha status in female meerkats is associated with an adaptive increase in body size and hence that morphological modification of female vertebrates may be more widespread than has been previously supposed.

  8. Obesity and Body Size Preferences of Jordanian Women

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Madanat, Hala; Hawks, Steven R.; Angeles, Heidi N.

    2011-01-01

    The nutrition transition is associated with increased obesity rates and increased desire to be thin. This study evaluates the relationship between actual body size and desired body size among a representative sample of 800 Jordanian women. Using Stunkard's body silhouettes, women were asked to identify their current and ideal body sizes, healthy…

  9. Size and scaling in human evolution.

    PubMed

    Pilbeam, D; Gould, S J

    1974-12-06

    Our general conclusion is simply stated: many lineages display phyletic size increase; allometric changes almost always accompany increase in body size. We cannot judge adaptation until we separate such changes into those required by increasing size and those serving as special adaptations to changing environments. In our view, the three australopithecines are, in a number of features, scaled variants of the "same" animal. In these characters, A. africanus is no more "advanced" than the larger, more robust forms. The one early hominid to show a significant departure from this adaptive pattern toward later hominids-cranially, dentally, and postcranially-is H. habilis from East Africa. The australopithecines, one of which was probably a precursor of the Homolineage, were apparently a successful group of basically vegetarian hominids, more advanced behaviorally than apes (87), but not hunter-gatherers. The fossil hominids of Africa fall into two major groupings. One probable lineage, the australopithecines, apparently became extinct without issue; the other evolved to modern man. Both groups displayed steady increase in body size. We consider quantitatively two key characters of the hominid skull: cranial capacity and cheek tooth size. The variables are allometrically related to body size in both lineages. In australopithecines, the manner of relative growth neatly meets the predictions for functional equivalence over a wide range of sizes (negative allometry of cranial capacity with a slope against body weight of 0.2 to 0.4 and positive allometry of postcanine area with a slope near 0.75). In the A. africanus to H. sapiens lineage, cranial capacity increases with positive allometry (slope 1.73) while cheek teeth decrease absolutely (slope - 0.725). Clearly, these are special adaptations unrelated to the physical requirements of increasing body size. We examined qualitatively other features, which also seem to vary allometrically. Of course, many characters should be

  10. Sizing Determination Final Report

    DTIC Science & Technology

    1988-02-01

    the other hand bring the tape- downward an6 forward so that it crosses the center of the lower jaw at a poiot just in front of the jaw/ neck junction...SCOTT S* ~ ,n.... ..~a- a - a SAVON USIO 9. I S S I . Height: 171.5 cm 2 . Weig.it: 146 lbs cAn 3- -Face Size - Adjustable Metric Tempate Circuference

  11. Coal-Sizing Auger

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Lewis, E. V.

    1985-01-01

    Aft end of auger, like forward, face-piercing end, equipped with hard cutting bits such as diamonds. As auger breaks face, pulls broken coal lumps into jaws and forces them into hardened throat section. There, cutting bits chew up lumps: Clearance between throat and auger shaft sets maximum size for coal particles that pass through. Auger motion pushes coal particles into mixing chamber, where paddles combine them with water.

  12. Biofunctional Understanding and Judgment of Size

    PubMed Central

    Jin, Zheng; Lee, Yang; Yuan, Zheng

    2016-01-01

    Research has shown that the meaningfulness of the material increases judged size, whereas symmetry decreases size judgments. These findings have been interpreted in terms of information processing, with a greater quantity of information leading to a judgment of larger size. An alternative view based on biofunctional understanding theory emphasizes the quality of affordance-triggered biological activity as reported and observed in attitudes toward playing sports, effortless understanding, knowledge-in-action, meditative wisdom, and body–mind cycle of adaptation. This alternative implies that affordance biofunctional activity is naturally size-diminishinging as it moves toward coherence and size-expanding as it moves away from coherence influencing judgments of size accordingly. Here we tested this hypothesis in the realm of sensorimotor integration. Our first experiment showed that phonologically unpronounced or symmetric symbols elicit smaller size judgments than phonologically pronounced and asymmetric symbols. Next, we manipulated the quantity of meaning with the affordance (possibilities for biofunctional activity) orthogonally in a second experiment; results indicated that meaning affects size judgments only in the absence of phonological information. We conclude that the biofunctional activity affordance may be responsible for observed differences in size judgment. PMID:27047438

  13. Nuclear size control in fission yeast.

    PubMed

    Neumann, Frank R; Nurse, Paul

    2007-11-19

    A long-standing biological question is how a eukaryotic cell controls the size of its nucleus. We report here that in fission yeast, nuclear size is proportional to cell size over a 35-fold range, and use mutants to show that a 16-fold change in nuclear DNA content does not influence the relative size of the nucleus. Multi-nucleated cells with unevenly distributed nuclei reveal that nuclei surrounded by a greater volume of cytoplasm grow more rapidly. During interphase of the cell cycle nuclear growth is proportional to cell growth, and during mitosis there is a rapid expansion of the nuclear envelope. When the nuclear/cell (N/C) volume ratio is increased by centrifugation or genetic manipulation, nuclear growth is arrested while the cell continues to grow; in contrast, low N/C ratios are rapidly corrected by nuclear growth. We propose that there is a general cellular control linking nuclear growth to cell size.

  14. Problem size, parallel architecture and optimal speedup

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Nicol, David M.; Willard, Frank H.

    1987-01-01

    The communication and synchronization overhead inherent in parallel processing can lead to situations where adding processors to the solution method actually increases execution time. Problem type, problem size, and architecture type all affect the optimal number of processors to employ. The numerical solution of an elliptic partial differential equation is examined in order to study the relationship between problem size and architecture. The equation's domain is discretized into n sup 2 grid points which are divided into partitions and mapped onto the individual processor memories. The relationships between grid size, stencil type, partitioning strategy, processor execution time, and communication network type are analytically quantified. In so doing, the optimal number of processors was determined to assign to the solution, and identified (1) the smallest grid size which fully benefits from using all available processors, (2) the leverage on performance given by increasing processor speed or communication network speed, and (3) the suitability of various architectures for large numerical problems.

  15. Economies of Size in Production Agriculture

    PubMed Central

    Duffy, Michael

    2009-01-01

    Economies of size refer to the ability of a farm to lower costs of production by increasing production. Agriculture production displays an L-shaped average cost curve where costs are lower initially but reach a point where no further gains are achieved. Spreading fixed costs, bulk purchases, and marketing power are cited as reasons for economies of size. Labor-reducing technologies may be the primary reason. Most studies do not include the external costs from prophylactic antibiotic use, impact on rural communities, and environmental damage associated with large-scale production. These can contribute to the economies of size. PMID:23144676

  16. Class Size Reduction. LAO Policy Brief.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Schwartz, Joel

    The California Legislature and Governor created the Class Size Reduction (CSR) program as part of the 1996-97 Budget Act. The goal of the program is to increase student achievement by reducing average class sizes from 28.6 students to no more than 20 students in up to 3 grades. The 1997-98 governor's budget proposes expansion of the CSR program to…

  17. Increasing point-count duration increases standard error

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Smith, W.P.; Twedt, D.J.; Hamel, P.B.; Ford, R.P.; Wiedenfeld, D.A.; Cooper, R.J.

    1998-01-01

    We examined data from point counts of varying duration in bottomland forests of west Tennessee and the Mississippi Alluvial Valley to determine if counting interval influenced sampling efficiency. Estimates of standard error increased as point count duration increased both for cumulative number of individuals and species in both locations. Although point counts appear to yield data with standard errors proportional to means, a square root transformation of the data may stabilize the variance. Using long (>10 min) point counts may reduce sample size and increase sampling error, both of which diminish statistical power and thereby the ability to detect meaningful changes in avian populations.

  18. Specialization and group size: brain and behavioural correlates of colony size in ants lacking morphological castes.

    PubMed

    Amador-Vargas, Sabrina; Gronenberg, Wulfila; Wcislo, William T; Mueller, Ulrich

    2015-02-22

    Group size in both multicellular organisms and animal societies can correlate with the degree of division of labour. For ants, the task specialization hypothesis (TSH) proposes that increased behavioural specialization enabled by larger group size corresponds to anatomical specialization of worker brains. Alternatively, the social brain hypothesis proposes that increased levels of social stimuli in larger colonies lead to enlarged brain regions in all workers, regardless of their task specialization. We tested these hypotheses in acacia ants (Pseudomyrmex spinicola), which exhibit behavioural but not morphological task specialization. In wild colonies, we marked, followed and tested ant workers involved in foraging tasks on the leaves (leaf-ants) and in defensive tasks on the host tree trunk (trunk-ants). Task specialization increased with colony size, especially in defensive tasks. The relationship between colony size and brain region volume was task-dependent, supporting the TSH. Specifically, as colony size increased, the relative size of regions within the mushroom bodies of the brain decreased in trunk-ants but increased in leaf-ants; those regions play important roles in learning and memory. Our findings suggest that workers specialized in defence may have reduced learning abilities relative to leaf-ants; these inferences remain to be tested. In societies with monomorphic workers, brain polymorphism enhanced by group size could be a mechanism by which division of labour is achieved.

  19. Size-dependent leaf area ratio in plant twigs: implication for leaf size optimization

    PubMed Central

    Yang, Dongmei; Niklas, Karl J.; Xiang, Shuang; Sun, Shucun

    2010-01-01

    Background and Aims Although many hypotheses have been proposed to explain variation in leaf size, the mechanism underlying the variation remains not fully understood. To help understand leaf size variation, the cost/benefit of twig size was analysed, since, according to Corner's rule, twig size is positively correlated with the size of appendages the twig bears. Methods An extensive survey of twig functional traits, including twig (current-year shoots including one stem and few leaves) and leaf size (individual leaf area and mass), was conducted for 234 species from four broadleaved forests. The scaling relationship between twig mass and leaf area was determined using standardized major axis regression and phylogenetic independent comparative analyses. Key Results Leaf area was found to scale positively and allometrically with both stem and twig mass (stem mass plus leaf mass) with slopes significantly smaller than 1·0, independent of life form and habitat type. Thus, the leaf area ratio (the ratio of total leaf area to stem or twig mass) decreases with increasing twig size. Moreover, the leaf area ratio correlated negatively with individual leaf mass. The results of phylogenetic independent comparativeanalyses were consistent with the correlations. Based on the above results, a simple model for twig size optimization was constructed, from which it is postulated that large leaf size–twig size may be favoured when leaf photosynthetic capacity is high and/or when leaf life span and/or stem longevity are long. The model's predictions are consistent with leaf size variation among habitats, in which leaf size tends to be small in poor habitats with a low primary productivity. The model also explains large variations in leaf size within habitats for which leaf longevity and stem longevity serve as important determinants. Conclusions The diminishing returns in the scaling of total leaf area with twig size can be explained in terms of a very simple model on twig size

  20. Brood size moderates associations between relative size, telomere length, and immune development in European starling nestlings.

    PubMed

    Nettle, Daniel; Andrews, Clare; Reichert, Sophie; Bedford, Tom; Gott, Annie; Parker, Craig; Kolenda, Claire; Martin-Ruiz, Carmen; Monaghan, Pat; Bateson, Melissa

    2016-11-01

    For young birds in a nest, body size may have implications for other aspects of development such as telomere length and immune function. However, it is possible to predict associations in either direction. On the one hand, there may be trade-offs between growth and telomere maintenance, and growth and investment in immune function, suggesting there will be negative correlations. On the other hand, relatively larger individuals might be advantaged in competition with their nest-mates, allowing them to garner more resources overall, leading to positive correlations. We studied development over the nestling period in 34 nests of wild European starlings, Sturnus vulgaris. Intrabrood competition is typically more intense in larger broods. Hence, we predicted that body size should become an increasingly positive predictor of telomere length and immune functioning as brood size increases. In partial support of our prediction, there were significant interactions between brood size and body size in predicting both erythrocyte telomere length change and plasma levels of the cytokine interleukin-6. The associations between body size and these outcomes went from negative in the smallest broods to positive in the largest. A further immune marker, high-sensitivity C-reactive protein, showed no systematic patterning with body size or brood size. Our results confirm that the size to which a nestling grows is important for telomere dynamics and the development of the immune system, but the phenotypic associations are moderated by the competitive context.

  1. Biostatistics Series Module 5: Determining Sample Size

    PubMed Central

    Hazra, Avijit; Gogtay, Nithya

    2016-01-01

    Determining the appropriate sample size for a study, whatever be its type, is a fundamental aspect of biomedical research. An adequate sample ensures that the study will yield reliable information, regardless of whether the data ultimately suggests a clinically important difference between the interventions or elements being studied. The probability of Type 1 and Type 2 errors, the expected variance in the sample and the effect size are the essential determinants of sample size in interventional studies. Any method for deriving a conclusion from experimental data carries with it some risk of drawing a false conclusion. Two types of false conclusion may occur, called Type 1 and Type 2 errors, whose probabilities are denoted by the symbols σ and β. A Type 1 error occurs when one concludes that a difference exists between the groups being compared when, in reality, it does not. This is akin to a false positive result. A Type 2 error occurs when one concludes that difference does not exist when, in reality, a difference does exist, and it is equal to or larger than the effect size defined by the alternative to the null hypothesis. This may be viewed as a false negative result. When considering the risk of Type 2 error, it is more intuitive to think in terms of power of the study or (1 − β). Power denotes the probability of detecting a difference when a difference does exist between the groups being compared. Smaller α or larger power will increase sample size. Conventional acceptable values for power and α are 80% or above and 5% or below, respectively, when calculating sample size. Increasing variance in the sample tends to increase the sample size required to achieve a given power level. The effect size is the smallest clinically important difference that is sought to be detected and, rather than statistical convention, is a matter of past experience and clinical judgment. Larger samples are required if smaller differences are to be detected. Although the

  2. Sneaker Males Affect Fighter Male Body Size and Sexual Size Dimorphism in Salmon.

    PubMed

    Weir, Laura K; Kindsvater, Holly K; Young, Kyle A; Reynolds, John D

    2016-08-01

    Large male body size is typically favored by directional sexual selection through competition for mates. However, alternative male life-history phenotypes, such as "sneakers," should decrease the strength of sexual selection acting on body size of large "fighter" males. We tested this prediction with salmon species; in southern populations, where sneakers are common, fighter males should be smaller than in northern populations, where sneakers are rare, leading to geographical clines in sexual size dimorphism (SSD). Consistent with our prediction, fighter male body size and SSD (fighter male∶female size) increase with latitude in species with sneaker males (Atlantic salmon Salmo salar and masu salmon Oncorhynchus masou) but not in species without sneakers (chum salmon Oncorhynchus keta and pink salmon Oncorhynchus gorbuscha). This is the first evidence that sneaker males affect SSD across populations and species, and it suggests that alternative male mating strategies may shape the evolution of body size.

  3. Women's bust size and men's courtship solicitation.

    PubMed

    Gueguen, Nicolas

    2007-12-01

    Previous studies have found that women with larger breasts than the average were considered to be more physically attractive. In these studies attractiveness was measured with the help of silhouette figures or photographs and the effect of breast size on men's behaviour was not considered. In this study two experiments were carried out in order to test the effect of a woman's breast size on approaches made by males. We hypothesized that an increase in breast size would be associated with an increase in approaches by men. A young female confederate was instructed to wear a bra that permitted her to artificially vary her breast size. In the first experiment the female confederate was instructed to sit in a nightclub for one hour whereas in the second experiment she was instructed to take a seat in a pavement area of a bar. It was found that increasing the breast size of the female confederate was associated with an increasing number of approaches by men.

  4. Femtosecond laser-induced size reduction of carbon nanodots in solution: Effect of laser fluence, spot size, and irradiation time

    SciTech Connect

    Nguyen, Vanthan; Yan, Lihe Si, Jinhai; Hou, Xun

    2015-02-28

    Photoluminescent carbon nanodots (C-dots) with size tunability and uniformity were fabricated in polyethylene glycol (PEG{sub 200N}) solution using femtosecond laser ablation method. The size distributions and photoluminescence (PL) properties of C-dots are well controlled by adjusting the combined parameters of laser fluence, spot size, and irradiation time. The size reduction efficiency of the C-dots progressively increases with decreasing laser fluence and spot size. The optimal PL spectra are red-shifted and the quantum yields decrease with the increase in C-dots size, which could be attributed to the more complex surface functional groups attached on C-dots induced at higher laser fluence and larger spot size. Moreover, an increase in irradiation time leads to a decrease in size of C-dots, but long-time irradiation will result in the generation of complex functional groups on C-dots, subsequently the PL spectra are red-shifted.

  5. Particle size distribution and particle size-related crystalline silica content in granite quarry dust.

    PubMed

    Sirianni, Greg; Hosgood, Howard Dean; Slade, Martin D; Borak, Jonathan

    2008-05-01

    Previous studies indicate that the relationship between empirically derived particle counts, particle mass determinations, and particle size-related silica content are not constant within mines or across mine work tasks. To better understand the variability of particle size distributions and variations in silica content by particle size in a granite quarry, exposure surveys were conducted with side-by-side arrays of four closed face cassettes, four cyclones, four personal environmental monitors, and a real-time particle counter. In general, the proportion of silica increased as collected particulate size increased, but samples varied in an inconstant way. Significant differences in particle size distributions were seen depending on the extent of ventilation and the nature and activity of work performed. Such variability raises concerns about the adequacy of silica exposure assessments based on only limited numbers of samples or short-term samples.

  6. Effect Sizes, Confidence Intervals, and Confidence Intervals for Effect Sizes

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Thompson, Bruce

    2007-01-01

    The present article provides a primer on (a) effect sizes, (b) confidence intervals, and (c) confidence intervals for effect sizes. Additionally, various admonitions for reformed statistical practice are presented. For example, a very important implication of the realization that there are dozens of effect size statistics is that "authors must…

  7. Size reduction machine

    SciTech Connect

    Fricke, V.

    1999-12-15

    The Size Reduction Machine (SRM) is a mobile platform capable of shearing various shapes and types of metal components at a variety of elevations. This shearing activity can be performed without direct physical movement and placement of the shear head by the operator. The base unit is manually moved and roughly aligned to each cut location. The base contains the electronics: hydraulic pumps, servos, and actuators needed to move the shear-positioning arm. The movable arm allows the shear head to have six axes of movement and to cut to within 4 inches of a wall surface. The unit has a slick electrostatic capture coating to assist in external decontamination. Internal contamination of the unit is controlled by a high-efficiency particulate air (HEPA) filter on the cooling inlet fan. The unit is compact enough to access areas through a 36-inch standard door opening. This paper is an Innovative Technology Summary Report designed to provide potential users with the information they need to quickly determine if a technology would apply to a particular environmental management problem. They also are designed for readers who may recommend that a technology be considered by prospective users.

  8. Sizing of microdrops

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lee, Irwin T.; Fan, Sewan; Halyo, Valerie; Kim, Peter C.; Lee, Eric R.; Perl, Martin L.; Rogers, Howard

    2004-04-01

    Several techniques for determining the size of small fluid microdrops with diameters ranging from 5 to 30 μm have been developed and evaluated using an automated variation on the Millikan oil drop experiment. The average diameter of a large sample of monodisperse fluid drops was determined by measuring their terminal velocity in air, or if charged, their motion under the influence of an electric field, as well as by measurement of the magnitude of their Brownian motion. The diameter of individual drops was determined optically, by direct observation using an imaging system based on a charge-coupled-device camera. The technique used to analyze the image data is based on a best-fit technique taking the point spread function of the lens into account, and yields results accurate to 1% (based on a single image) without the need for any calibration. By combining this technique with terminal velocity measurements, the density of the fluid can be determined to similar accuracy.

  9. Exciton size and quantum transport in nanoplatelets.

    PubMed

    Pelzer, Kenley M; Darling, Seth B; Gray, Stephen K; Schaller, Richard D

    2015-12-14

    Two-dimensional nanoplatelets (NPLs) are an exciting class of materials with promising optical and energy transport properties. The possibility of efficient energy transport between nanoplatelets raises questions regarding the nature of energy transfer in these thin, laterally extended systems. A challenge in understanding exciton transport is the uncertainty regarding the size of the exciton. Depending on the material and defects in the nanoplatelet, an exciton could plausibly extend over an entire plate or localize to a small region. The variation in possible exciton sizes raises the question how exciton size impacts the efficiency of transport between nanoplatelet structures. Here, we explore this issue using a quantum master equation approach. This method goes beyond the assumptions of Förster theory to allow for quantum mechanical effects that could increase energy transfer efficiency. The model is extremely flexible in describing different systems, allowing us to test the effect of varying the spatial extent of the exciton. We first discuss qualitative aspects of the relationship between exciton size and transport and then conduct simulations of exciton transport between NPLs for a range of exciton sizes and environmental conditions. Our results reveal that exciton size has a strong effect on energy transfer efficiency and suggest that manipulation of exciton size may be useful in designing NPLs for energy transport.

  10. Exciton size and quantum transport in nanoplatelets

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pelzer, Kenley M.; Darling, Seth B.; Gray, Stephen K.; Schaller, Richard D.

    2015-12-01

    Two-dimensional nanoplatelets (NPLs) are an exciting class of materials with promising optical and energy transport properties. The possibility of efficient energy transport between nanoplatelets raises questions regarding the nature of energy transfer in these thin, laterally extended systems. A challenge in understanding exciton transport is the uncertainty regarding the size of the exciton. Depending on the material and defects in the nanoplatelet, an exciton could plausibly extend over an entire plate or localize to a small region. The variation in possible exciton sizes raises the question how exciton size impacts the efficiency of transport between nanoplatelet structures. Here, we explore this issue using a quantum master equation approach. This method goes beyond the assumptions of Förster theory to allow for quantum mechanical effects that could increase energy transfer efficiency. The model is extremely flexible in describing different systems, allowing us to test the effect of varying the spatial extent of the exciton. We first discuss qualitative aspects of the relationship between exciton size and transport and then conduct simulations of exciton transport between NPLs for a range of exciton sizes and environmental conditions. Our results reveal that exciton size has a strong effect on energy transfer efficiency and suggest that manipulation of exciton size may be useful in designing NPLs for energy transport.

  11. Exciton size and quantum transport in nanoplatelets

    SciTech Connect

    Pelzer, Kenley M. Gray, Stephen K.; Darling, Seth B.; Schaller, Richard D.

    2015-12-14

    Two-dimensional nanoplatelets (NPLs) are an exciting class of materials with promising optical and energy transport properties. The possibility of efficient energy transport between nanoplatelets raises questions regarding the nature of energy transfer in these thin, laterally extended systems. A challenge in understanding exciton transport is the uncertainty regarding the size of the exciton. Depending on the material and defects in the nanoplatelet, an exciton could plausibly extend over an entire plate or localize to a small region. The variation in possible exciton sizes raises the question how exciton size impacts the efficiency of transport between nanoplatelet structures. Here, we explore this issue using a quantum master equation approach. This method goes beyond the assumptions of Förster theory to allow for quantum mechanical effects that could increase energy transfer efficiency. The model is extremely flexible in describing different systems, allowing us to test the effect of varying the spatial extent of the exciton. We first discuss qualitative aspects of the relationship between exciton size and transport and then conduct simulations of exciton transport between NPLs for a range of exciton sizes and environmental conditions. Our results reveal that exciton size has a strong effect on energy transfer efficiency and suggest that manipulation of exciton size may be useful in designing NPLs for energy transport.

  12. Discrimination of speaker size from syllable phrasesa)

    PubMed Central

    Ives, D. Timothy; Smith, David R. R.; Patterson, Roy D.

    2008-01-01

    The length of the vocal tract is correlated with speaker size and, so, speech sounds have information about the size of the speaker in a form that is interpretable by the listener. A wide range of different vocal tract lengths exist in the population and humans are able to distinguish speaker size from the speech. Smith et al. [J. Acoust. Soc. Am. 117, 305–318 (2005)] presented vowel sounds to listeners and showed that the ability to discriminate speaker size extends beyond the normal range of speaker sizes which suggests that information about the size and shape of the vocal tract is segregated automatically at an early stage in the processing. This paper reports an extension of the size discrimination research using a much larger set of speech sounds, namely, 180 consonant-vowel and vowel-consonant syllables. Despite the pronounced increase in stimulus variability, there was actually an improvement in discrimination performance over that supported by vowel sounds alone. Performance with vowel-consonant syllables was slightly better than with consonant-vowel syllables. These results support the hypothesis that information about the length of the vocal tract is segregated at an early stage in auditory processing. PMID:16419826

  13. Discrimination of speaker size from syllable phrases.

    PubMed

    Ives, D Timothy; Smith, David R R; Patterson, Roy D

    2005-12-01

    The length of the vocal tract is correlated with speaker size and, so, speech sounds have information about the size of the speaker in a form that is interpretable by the listener. A wide range of different vocal tract lengths exist in the population and humans are able to distinguish speaker size from the speech. Smith et al. [J. Acoust. Soc. Am. 117, 305-318 (2005)] presented vowel sounds to listeners and showed that the ability to discriminate speaker size extends beyond the normal range of speaker sizes which suggests that information about the size and shape of the vocal tract is segregated automatically at an early stage in the processing. This paper reports an extension of the size discrimination research using a much larger set of speech sounds, namely, 180 consonant-vowel and vowel-consonant syllables. Despite the pronounced increase in stimulus variability, there was actually an improvement in discrimination performance over that supported by vowel sounds alone. Performance with vowel-consonant syllables was slightly better than with consonant-vowel syllables. These results support the hypothesis that information about the length of the vocal tract is segregated at an early stage in auditory processing.

  14. Sizing Up Social Media

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Pearson, Jerold

    2010-01-01

    Most people are aware of the increasing importance of social media to institutional advancement, and many colleges and universities have started investing resources in these media. The next step is to measure the impact of social media on the institution and evaluate the success of one's efforts. Every advancement leader should understand how…

  15. When Effect Sizes Disagree: The Case of "r" and "d"

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    McGrath, Robert E.; Meyer, Gregory J.

    2006-01-01

    The increased use of effect sizes in single studies and meta-analyses raises new questions about statistical inference. Choice of an effect-size index can have a substantial impact on the interpretation of findings. The authors demonstrate the issue by focusing on two popular effect-size measures, the correlation coefficient and the…

  16. 78 FR 36083 - Small Business Size Standards; Educational Services; Correction

    Federal Register 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014

    2013-06-17

    ... 3245-AG29 Small Business Size Standards; Educational Services; Correction AGENCY: U.S. Small Business..., effective October 24, 2012, increased small business size standards for nine industries in North American... ``611519'' to read as follows: Sec. 121.201 What size standards has SBA identified by North...

  17. Benchmark calculations of thermal reaction rates. I - Quantal scattering theory

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Chatfield, David C.; Truhlar, Donald G.; Schwenke, David W.

    1991-01-01

    The thermal rate coefficient for the prototype reaction H + H2 yields H2 + H with zero total angular momentum is calculated by summing, averaging, and numerically integrating state-to-state reaction probabilities calculated by time-independent quantum-mechanical scattering theory. The results are very carefully converged with respect to all numerical parameters in order to provide high-precision benchmark results for confirming the accuracy of new methods and testing their efficiency.

  18. Microstructure versus substructure size effect

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ghassemali, Ehsan; Jarfors, Anders E. W.; Tan, Ming-Jen; Wah, Chua Beng

    2016-10-01

    In metal deformation, size effect is generally attributed to the interactive effect of grain size and specimen dimension. This work shows, however, that relative substructure dimensions should also be considered. Micro-compression tests on the micro-pins having different grain sizes revealed no significant size effect with respect to the mechanical behavior, even if the number of grains over the diameter of the micro-pins falls below its critical value. To justify the reason laying under this fact, a recovery annealing cycle was applied on the micro-pins to change the substructure properties without altering the mean grain size. A surprising drop in the flow stress of the recovery-annealed micro-pins implied the importance of considering subgrain size rather than grain size over the diameter of component for the size effect investigation.

  19. The role of cAMP in synaptic homeostasis in response to environmental temperature challenges and hyperexcitability mutations

    PubMed Central

    Ueda, Atsushi; Wu, Chun-Fang

    2015-01-01

    Homeostasis is the ability of physiological systems to regain functional balance following environment or experimental insults and synaptic homeostasis has been demonstrated in various species following genetic or pharmacological disruptions. Among environmental challenges, homeostatic responses to temperature extremes are critical to animal survival under natural conditions. We previously reported that axon terminal arborization in Drosophila larval neuromuscular junctions (NMJs) is enhanced at elevated temperatures; however, the amplitude of excitatory junctional potentials (EJPs) remains unaltered despite the increase in synaptic bouton numbers. Here we determine the cellular basis of this homeostatic adjustment in larvae reared at high temperature (HT, 29°C). We found that synaptic current focally recorded from individual synaptic boutons was unaffected by rearing temperature (<15°C to >30°C). However, HT rearing decreased the quantal size (amplitude of spontaneous miniature EJPs, or mEJPs), which compensates for the increased number of synaptic releasing sites to retain a normal EJP size. The quantal size decrease is accounted for by a decrease in input resistance of the postsynaptic muscle fiber, indicating an increase in membrane area that matches the synaptic growth at HT. Interestingly, a mutation in rutabaga (rut) encoding adenylyl cyclase (AC) exhibited no obvious changes in quantal size or input resistance of postsynaptic muscle cells after HT rearing, suggesting an important role for rut AC in temperature-induced synaptic homeostasis in Drosophila. This extends our previous finding of rut-dependent synaptic homeostasis in hyperexcitable mutants, e.g., slowpoke (slo). In slo larvae, the lack of BK channel function is partially ameliorated by upregulation of presynaptic Shaker (Sh) IA current to limit excessive transmitter release in addition to postsynaptic glutamate receptor recomposition that reduces the quantal size. PMID:25698925

  20. Sizing Up the Situation

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    2004-01-01

    Hailstorm damage to the Space Shuttle's External Tank inspired a NASA innovation with extensive photography applications. In order to measure the defects caused by the storm, Kennedy Space Center used telephoto lenses to zoom in on the tank and view the damage clearly. However, since there was no reference object in the image, the engineers could not determine the scale of the damage. In photographic situations similar to this, an object, such as a ruler, is placed within the field of view. This allows a person to look at a photograph and have a visual indication of the scale of the objects in it. In the External Tank situation, however, this procedure was not possible. As a solution, Kennedy developed the Scaling and Measurement Device for Photographic Images, which provides a non-intrusive means of adding a scale to a photograph. In addition to meeting Kennedy's needs, scaling images is extremely important in crime and accident scene investigations, oil and chemical tank monitoring, and aerial photography. The innovation consists of a tool that attaches directly to a camera or charge coupled device using a standard screw. Two lasers fitted to the device provide parallel beams that are set 1 inch apart. These lasers enable the device to project a pattern into the field of view. When a photograph is taken, the image of the laser pattern appears, along with the image of the object under investigation, allowing the viewer quantifiable information as to the size of the object. The laser beams are accurate to approximately 200 feet. Windows-based software was developed to work with the scaling device tool. The software provides further techniques to measure objects in photographs and digital images. By using the software, any object in the image can be measured diagonally, vertically, and horizontally. The device and its software enable the user to determine two-dimensional measurements within a photograph.

  1. Cell size versus body size in geophilomorph centipedes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Moretto, Marco; Minelli, Alessandro; Fusco, Giuseppe

    2015-04-01

    Variation in animal body size is the result of a complex interplay between variation in cell number and cell size, but the latter has seldom been considered in wide-ranging comparative studies, although distinct patterns of variation have been described in the evolution of different lineages. We investigated the correlation between epidermal cell size and body size in a sample of 29 geophilomorph centipede species, representative of a wide range of body sizes, from 6 mm dwarf species to gigantic species more than 200 mm long, exploiting the marks of epidermal cells on the overlying cuticle in the form of micro-sculptures called scutes. We found conspicuous and significant variation in average scute area, both between suprageneric taxa and between genera, while the within-species range of variation is comparatively small. This supports the view that the average epidermal cell size is to some extent taxon specific. However, regression analyses show that neither body size nor the number of leg-bearing segments explain this variation, which suggests that cell size is not an usual target of change for body size evolution in this group of arthropods, although there is evidence of its correlation with other morphological variables, like cuticle thickness. Scute sizes of miniaturized geophilomorph species are well within the range of the lineage to which the species belong, suggesting recent evolutionary transitions to smaller body size.

  2. BRL Particle Sizing Interferometer

    DTIC Science & Technology

    1982-07-01

    possible operational conditions. The parameters associated with a fuel spray which may be expected to have a significant impact on PSI performance are...could be obtained for two possible viewing geometries. As Appendix II points out, A can be increased by using slit apertures to reduce Ax. In...particle number density and aerosol mass concentration using the model described in Appendix II. Inputs required are relative slit width Kappa, and

  3. Common determinants of body size and eye size in chickens from an advanced intercross line.

    PubMed

    Prashar, Ankush; Hocking, Paul M; Erichsen, Jonathan T; Fan, Qiao; Saw, Seang Mei; Guggenheim, Jeremy A

    2009-06-15

    Myopia development is characterised by an increased axial eye length. Therefore, identifying factors that influence eye size may provide new insights into the aetiology of myopia. In humans, axial length is positively correlated to height and weight, and in mice, eye weight is positively correlated with body weight. The purpose of this study was to examine the relationship between eye size and body size in chickens from a genetic cross in which alleles with major effects on eye and body size were segregating. Chickens from a cross between a layer line (small body size and eye size) and a broiler line (large body and eye size) were interbred for 10 generations so that alleles for eye and body size would have the chance to segregate independently. At 3 weeks of age, 510 chicks were assessed using in vivo high resolution A-scan ultrasonography and keratometry. Equatorial eye diameter and eye weight were measured after enucleation. The variations in eye size parameters that could be explained by body weight (BW), body length (BL), head width (HW) and sex were examined using multiple linear regression. It was found that BW, BL and HW and sex together predicted 51-56% of the variation in eye weight, axial length, corneal radius, and equatorial eye diameter. By contrast, the same variables predicted only 22% of the variation in lens thickness. After adjusting for sex, the three body size parameters predicted 45-49% of the variation in eye weight, axial length, corneal radius, and eye diameter, but only 0.4% of the variation in lens thickness. In conclusion, about half of the variation in eye size in the chickens of this broiler-layer advanced intercross line is likely to be determined by pleiotropic genes that also influence body size. Thus, mapping the quantitative trait loci (QTL) that determine body size may be useful in understanding the genetic determination of eye size (a logical inference of this result is that the 20 or more genetic variants that have recently

  4. The pack size effect: Influence on consumer perceptions of portion sizes.

    PubMed

    Hieke, Sophie; Palascha, Aikaterini; Jola, Corinne; Wills, Josephine; Raats, Monique M

    2016-01-01

    Larger portions as well as larger packs can lead to larger prospective consumption estimates, larger servings and increased consumption, described as 'portion-size effects' and 'pack size effects'. Although related, the effects of pack sizes on portion estimates have received less attention. While it is not possible to generalize consumer behaviour across cultures, external cues taken from pack size may affect us all. We thus examined whether pack sizes influence portion size estimates across cultures, leading to a general 'pack size effect'. We compared portion size estimates based on digital presentations of different product pack sizes of solid and liquid products. The study with 13,177 participants across six European countries consisted of three parts. Parts 1 and 2 asked participants to indicate the number of portions present in a combined photographic and text-based description of different pack sizes. The estimated portion size was calculated as the quotient of the content weight or volume of the food presented and the number of stated portions. In Part 3, participants stated the number of food items that make up a portion when presented with packs of food containing either a small or a large number of items. The estimated portion size was calculated as the item weight times the item number. For all three parts and across all countries, we found that participants' portion estimates were based on larger portions for larger packs compared to smaller packs (Part 1 and 2) as well as more items to make up a portion (Part 3); hence, portions were stated to be larger in all cases. Considering that the larger estimated portions are likely to be consumed, there are implications for energy intake and weight status.

  5. Temperature-size relations from the cellular-genomic perspective.

    PubMed

    Hessen, Dag O; Daufresne, Martin; Leinaas, Hans P

    2013-05-01

    A family of empirically based ecological 'rules', collectively known as temperature-size rules, predicts larger body size in colder environments. This prediction is based on studies demonstrating that a wide range of ectotherms show increased body size, cell size or genome size in low-temperature habitats, or that individuals raised at low temperature become larger than conspecifics raised at higher temperature. There is thus a potential for reduction in size with global warming, affecting all levels from cell volume to body size, community composition and food webs. Increased body size may be obtained either by increasing the size or number of cells. Processes leading to changed cell size are of great interest from an ecological, physiological and evolutionary perspective. Cell size scales with fundamental properties such as genome size, growth rate, protein synthesis rates and metabolic activity, although the causal directions of these correlations are not clear. Changes in genome size will thus, in many cases, not only affect cell or body size, but also life-cycle strategies. Symmetrically, evolutionary drivers of life-history strategies may impact growth rate and thus cell size, genome size and metabolic rates. Although this goes to the core of many ecological processes, it is hard to move from correlations to causations. To the extent that temperature-driven changes in genome size result in significant differences among populations in body size, allometry or life-cycle events such as mating season, it could serve as a fast route to speciation. We offer here a novel perspective on the temperature-size rules from a 'bottom-up' perspective: how temperature may induce changes in genome size, and thus implicitly in cell size and body size of metazoans. Alternatively: how temperature-driven enlargement of cells also dictates genome-size expansion to maintain the genome-size to cell-volume ratio. We then discuss the different evolutionary drivers in aquatic versus

  6. Coagulation algorithms with size binning

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Statton, David M.; Gans, Jason; Williams, Eric

    1994-01-01

    The Smoluchowski equation describes the time evolution of an aerosol particle size distribution due to aggregation or coagulation. Any algorithm for computerized solution of this equation requires a scheme for describing the continuum of aerosol particle sizes as a discrete set. One standard form of the Smoluchowski equation accomplishes this by restricting the particle sizes to integer multiples of a basic unit particle size (the monomer size). This can be inefficient when particle concentrations over a large range of particle sizes must be calculated. Two algorithms employing a geometric size binning convention are examined: the first assumes that the aerosol particle concentration as a function of size can be considered constant within each size bin; the second approximates the concentration as a linear function of particle size within each size bin. The output of each algorithm is compared to an analytical solution in a special case of the Smoluchowski equation for which an exact solution is known . The range of parameters more appropriate for each algorithm is examined.

  7. Size Effect in Ferroelectric Long Cylinders

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wang, Yuguo; Zhang, Peilin; Wang, Chunlei; Zhong, Weilie; N, Napp; D, R. Tilly

    1995-02-01

    The Curie temperature and polarization in a ferroelectric cylinder with infinite length have been examined using Landau free energy expansion. The Curie temperature and polarization decrease with decreasing cylinder diameter for the positive extrapolation length, and reach zero at the critical size. For negative extrapolation length, both Curie temperature and polarization increase with decreasing cylinder diameter.

  8. Effect Sizes in Cluster-Randomized Designs

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Hedges, Larry V.

    2007-01-01

    Multisite research designs involving cluster randomization are becoming increasingly important in educational and behavioral research. Researchers would like to compute effect size indexes based on the standardized mean difference to compare the results of cluster-randomized studies (and corresponding quasi-experiments) with other studies and to…

  9. Seasonal shifts in predator body size diversity and trophic interactions in size-structured predator-prey systems.

    PubMed

    Rudolf, Volker H W

    2012-05-01

    1. Theory suggests that the relationship between predator diversity and prey suppression should depend on variation in predator traits such as body size, which strongly influences the type and strength of species interactions. Prey species often face a range of different sized predators, and the composition of body sizes of predators can vary between communities and within communities across seasons. 2. Here, I test how variation in size structure of predator communities influences prey survival using seasonal changes in the size structure of a cannibalistic population as a model system. Laboratory and field experiments showed that although the per-capita consumption rates increased at higher predator-prey size ratios, mortality rates did not consistently increase with average size of cannibalistic predators. Instead, prey mortality peaked at the highest level of predator body size diversity. 3. Furthermore, observed prey mortality was significantly higher than predictions from the null model that assumed no indirect interactions between predator size classes, indicating that different sized predators were not substitutable but had more than additive effects. Higher predator body size diversity therefore increased prey mortality, despite the increased potential for behavioural interference and predation among predators demonstrated in additional laboratory experiments. 4. Thus, seasonal changes in the distribution of predator body sizes altered the strength of prey suppression not only through changes in mean predator size but also through changes in the size distribution of predators. In general, this indicates that variation (i.e. diversity) within a single trait, body size, can influence the strength of trophic interactions and emphasizes the importance of seasonal shifts in size structure of natural food webs for community dynamics.

  10. Regulatory change at Physalis Organ Size 1 correlates to natural variation in tomatillo reproductive organ size.

    PubMed

    Wang, Li; He, Lingli; Li, Jing; Zhao, Jing; Li, Zhichao; He, Chaoying

    2014-07-01

    The genetic basis of size variation in the reproductive organs of tomatillo (Physalis philadelphica) is unknown. Here we report that the expression levels of the gene Physalis Organ Size 1 (POS1) are positively associated with size variation in P. philadelphica reproductive organs such flowers, berries and seeds. POS1 knockdown results in smaller flowers and berries with smaller cells as compared with their wild-type counterparts. Conversely, POS1 overexpression promotes organ size without increasing the cell number. The first introns of the POS1 alleles from the large, intermediate and small tomatillo groups contain one, two and three 37-bp repeats, respectively. Furthermore, our results show that copy variation of repeats in the first intron of POS1 alleles results in differential expression of this gene. Thus, co-variation in tomatillo reproductive organ sizes can be attributed to the novel regulatory variation in POS1.

  11. Silica heat shield sizing

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Ebbesmeyer, L. H.; Christensen, H. E.

    1975-01-01

    The sensitivity of silica heat shield requirements to gap width, tile edge radius, and heat transfer distribution within tile gaps was investigated. A two-dimensional thermal model was modified and used to determine the effect of two dimensional heat transfer distributions at high temperature reusable surface insulation edges on shuttle thermal protection system (TPS) requirements. The sensitivity of TPS requirements to coating thickness, emissivity, substructure thickness, and changes in gap heating for several locations on shuttle was also studied. An inverse solution technique was applied to temperature data obtained in the Ames 20 MW turbulent duct in order to examine the effect of tile edge radius on TPS requirements. The derived heating values were then used to predict TPS requirements. Results show that increasing tile radius reduces TPS requirements.

  12. Exponential Size Distribution of von Willebrand Factor

    PubMed Central

    Lippok, Svenja; Obser, Tobias; Müller, Jochen P.; Stierle, Valentin K.; Benoit, Martin; Budde, Ulrich; Schneppenheim, Reinhard; Rädler, Joachim O.

    2013-01-01

    Von Willebrand Factor (VWF) is a multimeric protein crucial for hemostasis. Under shear flow, it acts as a mechanosensor responding with a size-dependent globule-stretch transition to increasing shear rates. Here, we quantify for the first time, to our knowledge, the size distribution of recombinant VWF and VWF-eGFP using a multilateral approach that involves quantitative gel analysis, fluorescence correlation spectroscopy, and total internal reflection fluorescence microscopy. We find an exponentially decaying size distribution of multimers for recombinant VWF as well as for VWF derived from blood samples in accordance with the notion of a step-growth polymerization process during VWF biosynthesis. The distribution is solely described by the extent of polymerization, which was found to be reduced in the case of the pathologically relevant mutant VWF-IIC. The VWF-specific protease ADAMTS13 systematically shifts the VWF size distribution toward smaller sizes. This dynamic evolution is monitored using fluorescence correlation spectroscopy and compared to a computer simulation of a random cleavage process relating ADAMTS13 concentration to the degree of VWF breakdown. Quantitative assessment of VWF size distribution in terms of an exponential might prove to be useful both as a valuable biophysical characterization and as a possible disease indicator for clinical applications. PMID:24010664

  13. Sauropod dinosaurs evolved moderately sized genomes unrelated to body size.

    PubMed

    Organ, Chris L; Brusatte, Stephen L; Stein, Koen

    2009-12-22

    Sauropodomorph dinosaurs include the largest land animals to have ever lived, some reaching up to 10 times the mass of an African elephant. Despite their status defining the upper range for body size in land animals, it remains unknown whether sauropodomorphs evolved larger-sized genomes than non-avian theropods, their sister taxon, or whether a relationship exists between genome size and body size in dinosaurs, two questions critical for understanding broad patterns of genome evolution in dinosaurs. Here we report inferences of genome size for 10 sauropodomorph taxa. The estimates are derived from a Bayesian phylogenetic generalized least squares approach that generates posterior distributions of regression models relating genome size to osteocyte lacunae volume in extant tetrapods. We estimate that the average genome size of sauropodomorphs was 2.02 pg (range of species means: 1.77-2.21 pg), a value in the upper range of extant birds (mean = 1.42 pg, range: 0.97-2.16 pg) and near the average for extant non-avian reptiles (mean = 2.24 pg, range: 1.05-5.44 pg). The results suggest that the variation in size and architecture of genomes in extinct dinosaurs was lower than the variation found in mammals. A substantial difference in genome size separates the two major clades within dinosaurs, Ornithischia (large genomes) and Saurischia (moderate to small genomes). We find no relationship between body size and estimated genome size in extinct dinosaurs, which suggests that neutral forces did not dominate the evolution of genome size in this group.

  14. Sauropod dinosaurs evolved moderately sized genomes unrelated to body size

    PubMed Central

    Organ, Chris L.; Brusatte, Stephen L.; Stein, Koen

    2009-01-01

    Sauropodomorph dinosaurs include the largest land animals to have ever lived, some reaching up to 10 times the mass of an African elephant. Despite their status defining the upper range for body size in land animals, it remains unknown whether sauropodomorphs evolved larger-sized genomes than non-avian theropods, their sister taxon, or whether a relationship exists between genome size and body size in dinosaurs, two questions critical for understanding broad patterns of genome evolution in dinosaurs. Here we report inferences of genome size for 10 sauropodomorph taxa. The estimates are derived from a Bayesian phylogenetic generalized least squares approach that generates posterior distributions of regression models relating genome size to osteocyte lacunae volume in extant tetrapods. We estimate that the average genome size of sauropodomorphs was 2.02 pg (range of species means: 1.77–2.21 pg), a value in the upper range of extant birds (mean = 1.42 pg, range: 0.97–2.16 pg) and near the average for extant non-avian reptiles (mean = 2.24 pg, range: 1.05–5.44 pg). The results suggest that the variation in size and architecture of genomes in extinct dinosaurs was lower than the variation found in mammals. A substantial difference in genome size separates the two major clades within dinosaurs, Ornithischia (large genomes) and Saurischia (moderate to small genomes). We find no relationship between body size and estimated genome size in extinct dinosaurs, which suggests that neutral forces did not dominate the evolution of genome size in this group. PMID:19793755

  15. Variations of sediment size and size distribution along a river

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Jan, C. D.; Tsai, Y. C.; Yang, S. Y.

    2015-12-01

    Sediment material of a river bed is an important factor for river morphodynamics. Typically, alluvial rivers construct their own geometries based on the sediment size and its distribution that affect the sediment transport capacity in river channel networks, involving the issues of watershed sediment yield, flood controls and the evolution of flood plain, habitats, deltas and adjacent coastline. Hence, investigating grain size and size distribution of sediment materials on riverbeds is important for practical river management and assessment of landscape evolution. In this study, we collected total 43 sediment samplings along the Koaping River in southern Taiwan to analyze the grain size and its distribution along the river. Spatial distributions of different representative grain sizes, such as D50 and D90, and the size corresponding Manning's n values are analyzed and discussed in this paper. An exponential grain size distribution (GSD) formula is used to explore the relation between the frequency and size of riverbed sediment. Results show that the grain size has a wide range distribution in the river upstream but displays a narrow-range variation in the river downstream. For example, the sediment medium size D50 ranges from 1.25 mm to 391.27 mm with an average of 49.36 mm in the upstream while it ranges from 0.135 mm to 0.625 mm with an average of 0.338 mm in the downstream. The best fitting curves of GSD with exponential scaling are analyzed with an empirical parameter Dc that is used to normalize the sediment grain size. This study finds that the empirical parameter Dc could be replaced by the sediment resentative size D65 (65% of sediment smaller than it). The results obtained herein could be useful not only in analyzing sediment transport of a river but also in river management.

  16. Studying the Body Sizes of Echinoidea during the Mesozoic Era

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tenorio, E.; Gupta, A.; Panneerselvam, S.; Heim, N. A.; Payne, J.

    2013-12-01

    Body size is an important trait that is affected by many factors such as temperature and space, more specifically the distance from the equator. We are studying whether Bergmann's rule or Cope's rule is dominant in the class Echinoidea during the Mesozoic Era. Bergmann's rule states that temperature and body size have an inverse correlation: as temperature decreases, body size increases. Bergmann's rule also states that as the distance from the equator increases, body size increases. The other principle we are studying, Cope's rule, dictates that the overall body size of an organism increases over time. Because CO2 is a greenhouse gas, we used rCO2 as a proxy for paleotemperature. The result from plotting body size against time was that as time progressed, body size tended to increase, supporting Cope's rule. By conducting correlation tests, we found that rCO2 and maximum area had a small, but significant, negative correlation, proving Bergmann's rule, but showing that there are other significant factors affecting the body sizes of Echinoids during this time period. After plotting the sizes against space, we found that these two factors had an inverse correlation during the Jurassic and Cretaceous periods, indicating that as distance from equator increases, size decreases. Cope's rule was supported since the overall trend is an increase in Echinoidea body size; in terms of space, however, Bergmann's rule did not apply to the class Echinoidea because the overall body size of the echinoderm decreased as the distance from equator increased. With this unexpected result, we concluded that there must have been another driving force other than temperature that influenced echinoids during the Mesozoic Era.

  17. Seed size selection by olive baboons.

    PubMed

    Kunz, Britta Kerstin; Linsenmair, Karl Eduard

    2008-10-01

    Seed size is an important plant fitness trait that can influence several steps between fruiting and the establishment of a plant's offspring. Seed size varies considerably within many plant species, yet the relevance of the trait for intra-specific fruit choice by primates has received little attention. Primates may select certain seed sizes within a species for a number of reasons, e.g. to decrease indigestible seed load or increase pulp intake per fruit. Olive baboons (Papio anubis, Cercopithecidae) are known to select seed size in unripe and mature pods of Parkia biglobosa (Mimosaceae) differentially, so that pods with small seeds, and an intermediate seed number, contribute most to dispersal by baboons. We tested whether olive baboons likewise select for smaller ripe seeds within each of nine additional fruit species whose fruit pulp baboons commonly consume, and for larger seeds in one species in which baboons feed on the seeds. Species differed in fruit type and seed number per fruit. For five of these species, baboons dispersed seeds that were significantly smaller than seeds extracted manually from randomly collected fresh fruits. In contrast, for three species, baboons swallowed seeds that were significantly longer and/or wider than seeds from fresh fruits. In two species, sizes of ingested seeds and seeds from fresh fruits did not differ significantly. Baboons frequently spat out seeds of Drypetes floribunda (Euphorbiaceae) but not those of other plant species having seeds of equal size. Oral processing of D. floribunda seeds depended on seed size: seeds that were spat out were significantly larger and swallowed seeds smaller, than seeds from randomly collected fresh fruits. We argue that seed size selection in baboons is influenced, among other traits, by the amount of pulp rewarded per fruit relative to seed load, which is likely to vary with fruit and seed shape.

  18. Effective sizes for subdivided populations

    SciTech Connect

    Chesser, R.K. Univ. of Georgia, Athens, GA ); Rhodes, O.E. Jr.; Sugg, D.W.; Schnabel, A. )

    1993-12-01

    Many derivations of effective population sizes have been suggested in the literature; however, few account for the breeding structure and none can readily be expanded to subdivided populations. Breeding structures influence gene correlations through their effects on the number of breeding individuals of each sex, the mean number of progeny per female, and the variance in the number of progeny produced by males and females. Additionally, hierarchical structuring in a population is determined by the number of breeding groups and the migration rates of males and females among such groups. This study derives analytical solutions for effective sizes that can be applied to subdivided populations. Parameters that encapsulate breeding structure and subdivision are utilized to derive the traditional inbreeding and variance effective sizes. Also, it is shown that effective sizes can be determined for any hierarchical level of population structure for which gene correlations can accrue. Derivations of effective sizes for the accumulation of gene correlations within breeding groups (coancestral effective size) and among breeding groups (intergroup effective size) are given. The results converge to traditional single population measures when similar assumptions are applied. In particular, inbreeding and intergroup effective sizes are shown to be special cases of the coancestral effective size, and intergroup and variance effective sizes will be equal if the population census remains constant. Instantaneous solutions for effective size, at any time after gene correlation begins to accrue, are given in terms of traditional F statistics or transition equations. All effective sizes are shown to converge upon a common asymptotic value when breeding tactics and migration rates are constant. The asymptotic effective size can be expressed in terms of the fixation indices and the number of breeding groups; however, the rate of approach to the asymptote is dependent upon dispersal rates.

  19. Size-dependent oxygen storage ability of nano-sized ceria.

    PubMed

    Sun, Congting; Xue, Dongfeng

    2013-09-14

    We thermodynamically studied the size-dependent oxygen storage ability of nano-sized ceria by tracing the surface Ce/O ratio of octahedral particles with different diameters, from the viewpoint of lattice Ce and O in a CeO2 crystallographic structure. The high surface Ce/O ratio with small scale particle size has more excess surface Ce(4+) ions, which allows ceria to have an increasing oxygen storage ability in a crystalline lattice. For the perfect octahedron growth shape of ceria, the nonstoichiometric surfaces can produce excess Ce(4+) ions, Ce(4+) ions can be stabilized by bonding with lattice oxygen, leading to an enhanced oxygen storage ability of ceria. With the increasing particle size, the surface Ce/O ratio approaches to 0.5 owing to the decreased contributions of atoms located at the edges and corners. When the octahedron diameter D = 0.55 nm, the surface Ce/O ratio can reach 0.75. When D = 7.58 nm, the surface Ce/O ratio decreases down to 0.51. If D≥ 14.61 nm, the surface Ce/O ratios are equal to 0.5. The present study deepens the insight of the size-dependent oxygen storage ability of nano-sized ceria, focusing on the size-dependent excess Ce(4+) on nonstoichiometric surfaces of ceria in thermodynamics.

  20. Relationship between Glaucoma Drainage Device Size and Intraocular Pressure Control: Does Size Matter?

    PubMed Central

    Rodgers, Cooper D; Meyer, Alissa M

    2017-01-01

    ABSTRACT There is ambiguity in the literature regarding whether a larger glaucoma drainage device (GDD) achieves a lower long-term intraocular pressure (IOP). There is some evidence on both sides, but overall there seems to be an optimal surface area of approximately 200-250 mm2 beyond which there may be little advantage to increasing the plate size for most patients. How to cite this article Rodgers CD, Meyer AM, Sherwood MB. Relationship between Glaucoma Drainage Device Size and Intraocular Pressure Control: Does Size Matter? J Curr Glaucoma Pract 2017;11(1):1-2. PMID:28138210

  1. Size-dependent thermopower of nickel nanoparticles

    SciTech Connect

    Singh, Jaiveer; Kaurav, N.; Okram, Gunadhor S.

    2014-04-24

    Nickel nanoparticles (Ni-NPs) were prepared by thermal decomposition method using Trioctylphosphine (TOP) and Oleylamine (OA). The average particle size (D) estimated from X-ray diffraction (XRD) using Scherrer equation, to be 1-10nm, systematically decreases with increasing concentration of TOP at constant OA concentration. The observed thermopower strongly depends on particle size particularly at low temperatures reaching a very high value of ∼ 10{sup 5} μV/K (at 20 K), and is attributed to the enhanced grain-boundary scattering combined with quantum confinement.

  2. Size sensors in bacteria, cell cycle control, and size control.

    PubMed

    Robert, Lydia

    2015-01-01

    Bacteria proliferate by repetitive cycles of cellular growth and division. The progression into the cell cycle is admitted to be under the control of cell size. However, the molecular basis of this regulation is still unclear. Here I will discuss which mechanisms could allow coupling growth and division by sensing size and transmitting this information to the division machinery. Size sensors could act at different stages of the cell cycle. During septum formation, mechanisms controlling the formation of the Z ring, such as MinCD inhibition or Nucleoid Occlusion (NO) could participate in the size-dependence of the division process. In addition or alternatively, the coupling of growth and division may occur indirectly through the control of DNA replication initiation. The relative importance of these different size-sensing mechanisms could depend on the environmental and genetic context. The recent demonstration of an incremental strategy of size control in bacteria, suggests that DnaA-dependent control of replication initiation could be the major size control mechanism limiting cell size variation.

  3. Size sensors in bacteria, cell cycle control, and size control

    PubMed Central

    Robert, Lydia

    2015-01-01

    Bacteria proliferate by repetitive cycles of cellular growth and division. The progression into the cell cycle is admitted to be under the control of cell size. However, the molecular basis of this regulation is still unclear. Here I will discuss which mechanisms could allow coupling growth and division by sensing size and transmitting this information to the division machinery. Size sensors could act at different stages of the cell cycle. During septum formation, mechanisms controlling the formation of the Z ring, such as MinCD inhibition or Nucleoid Occlusion (NO) could participate in the size-dependence of the division process. In addition or alternatively, the coupling of growth and division may occur indirectly through the control of DNA replication initiation. The relative importance of these different size-sensing mechanisms could depend on the environmental and genetic context. The recent demonstration of an incremental strategy of size control in bacteria, suggests that DnaA-dependent control of replication initiation could be the major size control mechanism limiting cell size variation. PMID:26074903

  4. The sizes of renal glomeruli in fetuses and infants.

    PubMed Central

    Souster, L P; Emery, J L

    1980-01-01

    An attempt was made to obtain normal values of the sizes of glomeruli in the fetus and child. The kidneys of 117 children from 12 weeks gestation to 5 years of age were measured and the difference in size between the juxta-arcuate, mid-cortical and superficial glomeruli was examined. Juxta-arcuate and mid-cortical glomeruli showed an initial decrease in size from 12 to 20 weeks gestation. This was not seen in the most superficial glomeruli. After the initial decrease, the juxta-arcuate and superficial glomeruli remained at the same size until birth. The superficial glomeruli remained the same size from 12 weeks gestation to term. There was an immediate increase in size after birth in all three groups which slowed down after 2 years, when all three groups became the same size. The changes in size of the juxta-arcuate and mid-cortical glomeruli may be explained by functional demand. PMID:7410201

  5. Effective Sizes for Subdivided Populations

    PubMed Central

    Chesser, R. K.; Rhodes-Jr., O. E.; Sugg, D. W.; Schnabel, A.

    1993-01-01

    Many derivations of effective population sizes have been suggested in the literature; however, few account for the breeding structure and none can readily be expanded to subdivided populations. Breeding structures influence gene correlations through their effects on the number of breeding individuals of each sex, the mean number of progeny per female, and the variance in the number of progeny produced by males and females. Additionally, hierarchical structuring in a population is determined by the number of breeding groups and the migration rates of males and females among such groups. This study derives analytical solutions for effective sizes that can be applied to subdivided populations. Parameters that encapsulate breeding structure and subdivision are utilized to derive the traditional inbreeding and variance effective sizes. Also, it is shown that effective sizes can be determined for any hierarchical level of population structure for which gene correlations can accrue. Derivations of effective sizes for the accumulation of gene correlations within breeding groups (coancestral effective size) and among breeding groups (intergroup effective size) are given. The results converge to traditional, single population measures when similar assumptions are applied. In particular, inbreeding and intergroup effective sizes are shown to be special cases of the coancestral effective size, and intergroup and variance effective sizes will be equal if the population census remains constant. Instantaneous solutions for effective sizes, at any time after gene correlation begins to accrue, are given in terms of traditional F statistics or transition equations. All effective sizes are shown to converge upon a common asymptotic value when breeding tactics and migration rates are constant. The asymptotic effective size can be expressed in terms of the fixation indices and the number of breeding groups; however, the rate of approach to the asymptote is dependent upon dispersal

  6. Size structuring and allometric scaling relationships in coral reef fishes.

    PubMed

    Dunic, Jillian C; Baum, Julia K

    2017-05-01

    Temperate marine fish communities are often size-structured, with predators consuming increasingly larger prey and feeding at higher trophic levels as they grow. Gape limitation and ontogenetic diet shifts are key mechanisms by which size structuring arises in these communities. Little is known, however, about size structuring in coral reef fishes. Here, we aimed to advance understanding of size structuring in coral reef food webs by examining the evidence for these mechanisms in two groups of reef predators. Given the diversity of feeding modes amongst coral reef fishes, we also compared gape size-body size allometric relationships across functional groups to determine whether they are reliable indicators of size structuring. We used gut content analysis and quantile regressions of predator size-prey size relationships to test for evidence of gape limitation and ontogenetic niche shifts in reef piscivores (n = 13 species) and benthic invertivores (n = 3 species). We then estimated gape size-body size allometric scaling coefficients for 21 different species from four functional groups, including herbivores/detritivores, which are not expected to be gape-limited. We found evidence of both mechanisms for size structuring in coral reef piscivores, with maximum prey size scaling positively with predator body size, and ontogenetic diet shifts including prey type and expansion of prey size. There was, however, little evidence of size structuring in benthic invertivores. Across species and functional groups, absolute and relative gape sizes were largest in piscivores as expected, but gape size-body size scaling relationships were not indicative of size structuring. Instead, relative gape sizes and mouth morphologies may be better indicators. Our results provide evidence that coral reef piscivores are size-structured and that gape limitation and ontogenetic niche shifts are the mechanisms from which this structure arises. Although gape allometry was not indicative of

  7. Optimal flexible sample size design with robust power.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Lanju; Cui, Lu; Yang, Bo

    2016-08-30

    It is well recognized that sample size determination is challenging because of the uncertainty on the treatment effect size. Several remedies are available in the literature. Group sequential designs start with a sample size based on a conservative (smaller) effect size and allow early stop at interim looks. Sample size re-estimation designs start with a sample size based on an optimistic (larger) effect size and allow sample size increase if the observed effect size is smaller than planned. Different opinions favoring one type over the other exist. We propose an optimal approach using an appropriate optimality criterion to select the best design among all the candidate designs. Our results show that (1) for the same type of designs, for example, group sequential designs, there is room for significant improvement through our optimization approach; (2) optimal promising zone designs appear to have no advantages over optimal group sequential designs; and (3) optimal designs with sample size re-estimation deliver the best adaptive performance. We conclude that to deal with the challenge of sample size determination due to effect size uncertainty, an optimal approach can help to select the best design that provides most robust power across the effect size range of interest. Copyright © 2016 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.

  8. Cataclasis and processes of particle size reduction

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Blenkinsop, Tom G.

    1991-05-01

    The particle size distribution (P.S.D.) of fragmented geological materials is affected by the fragmentation process, initial size distribution, number of fracturing events, energy input, strain, and confining pressure. A summary of literature shows that the fractal dimension ( D) of the P.S.D. is increased by the number of fracturing events, energy input, strain, and confining pressure. Cenozoic cataclasis of granite, granodiorites, gneisses and arkose seen in cores from the Cajon Pass drillhole, southern California, produced P.S.D.s with values of D that varied from 1.88 to 3.08. Each rock type has a characteristic and more limited range of D. Areas of dilatant texture and mode I fracture-fillings have low average values (2.32 and 2.37) compared to an average value of 2.67 in shear fracture-fillings D has a good inverse correlation with average particle size. Data from fault rocks in the San Gabriel fault zone, southern California ( Anderson et al., 1983) have been reanalyzed to show that values of D are higher (2.10 5.52) and average particle size is lower than the Cajon Pass samples, but the ranges of values overlap, and the inverse correlation between D and average particle size is extended. Microstructural observations combined with these results suggest that three processes contributed to particle size reduction during cataclasis. The first process of feldspar alteration, which leads to low values of D, has not been previously recognized. The second process is probably constrained comminution ( Sammis et al., 1987), since the average D in shear fracture-fillings is close to the value of 2.58 predicted by this theory. A further stage of particle size reduction is demonstrated by an increase of D with cataclasis. This third process is selective fracture of larger particles, which may also operate during localization and the cataclastic flow-to-faulting transition as observed in experiments. A transition from constrained comminution to selective fracture of

  9. Investigations of initiation spot size effects

    SciTech Connect

    Clarke, Steven A; Akinci, Adrian A; Leichty, Gary; Schaffer, Timothy; Murphy, Michael J; Munger, Alan; Thomas, Keith A

    2010-01-01

    As explosive components become smaller, a greater understanding of the effect of initiation spot size on detonation becomes increasingly critical. A series of tests of the effect of initiation spot size will be described. A series of DOI (direct optical initiation) detonators with initiation spots sizes from {approx}50 um to 1000um have been tested to determine laser parameters for threshold firing of low density PETN pressings. Results will be compared with theoretical predictions. Outputs of the initiation source (DOI ablation) have been characterized by a suite of diagnostics including PDV and schlieren imaging. Outputs of complete detonators have been characterized using PDV, streak, and/or schlieren imaging. At present, we have not found the expected change in the threshold energy to spot size relationship for DOI type detonators found in similar earlier for projectiles, slappers and EBWs. New detonators designs (Type C) are currently being tested that will allow the determination of the threshold for spot sizes from 250 um to 105um, where we hope to see change in the threshold vs. spot size relationship. Also, one test of an extremely small diameter spot size (50um) has resulted in preliminary NoGo only results even at energy densities as much as 8 times the energy density of the threshold results presented here. This gives preliminary evidence that 50um spot may be beyond the critical initiation diameter. The constant threshold energy to spot size relationship in the data to date does however still give some insight into the initiation mechanism of DOI detonators. If the DOI initiation mechanism were a 1D mechanism similar to a slapper or a flyer impact, the expected inflection point in the graph would have been between 300um and 500um diameter spot size, within the range of the data presented here. The lack of that inflection point indicates that the DOI initiation mechanism is more likely a 2D mechanism similar to a sphere or rod projectile. We expect to

  10. Sample Size for Correlation Estimates

    DTIC Science & Technology

    1989-09-01

    graphs, and computer programs are developed to find the sample number needed for a desired confidence interval size. Nonparametric measures of...correlation (Spearman’s ra and Kendall’s tau) are also examined for appropriate sample numbers when a specific confidence interval size desired.

  11. Characteristics of Unequal Size Drop Collisions

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kim, Jungyong; Longmire, Ellen; Kim, Man Sik

    2009-11-01

    Pairs of water/glycerin drops were injected into silicone oil and traveled on downward trajectories before colliding. Unequal size drop collisions with drop size ratios (Ds/DL) of 0.7 and 0.5 were investigated. Simultaneous dual-field PIV measurements were obtained to characterize coalescence and rebounding behavior. The initial injection angle and tube height were adjusted to access appropriate impact parameters. In the current study, the collision angle of the large drop was, in general, shallower than that of the small drop, and a range of velocity ratios and impact parameters was examined. Coalescence occurs above We* = 11 similar to collision outcomes for equal size drops. As drop size ratio decreases, the intervening film deforms more. If the velocity ratio uL/us < 1, the interface remains deformed at coalescence, but if uL/us > 1, the interface flattens before coalescence. The rupture location varies due to the asymmetry of the drops. As collision offset increases (B > 0), the film rupture time is shortened and mixing of the fluid within the drops is enhanced after coalescence. These results will be compared with the behavior observed previously for equal size drop collisions.

  12. INVITED REVIEW: Farm size and animal welfare.

    PubMed

    Robbins, J A; von Keyserlingk, M A G; Fraser, D; Weary, D M

    2016-12-01

    Critics of agricultural intensification have argued that the transition from smaller to larger farms has compromised animal welfare. To critically examine evidence relevant to this claim, we reviewed more than 150 publications that examined the relationship between farm size and at least one animal welfare indicator. Although much of this literature focuses on dairy cattle, we also reference other farmed species where appropriate. We found little evidence of any simple relationship, negative or positive, between farm size and animal welfare. Instead, the evidence suggests that larger farms provide some opportunities to improve animal welfare but may also create welfare risks. For example, larger farms permit more specialized and professional management of animal health but can make it more difficult to accommodate outdoor access that some view as integral to animal welfare. Future research should attempt to specify the underlying casual mechanisms by which statistical associations between farm size and indicators of welfare are believed to occur. We also suggest that policy and advocacy efforts aimed at reversing increases in farm size would be better directed toward improving welfare on farms of all sizes.

  13. Cell Size Regulation in Bacteria

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Amir, Ariel

    2014-05-01

    Various bacteria such as the canonical gram negative Escherichia coli or the well-studied gram positive Bacillus subtilis divide symmetrically after they approximately double their volume. Their size at division is not constant, but is typically distributed over a narrow range. Here, we propose an analytically tractable model for cell size control, and calculate the cell size and interdivision time distributions, as well as the correlations between these variables. We suggest ways of extracting the model parameters from experimental data, and show that existing data for E. coli supports partial size control, and a particular explanation: a cell attempts to add a constant volume from the time of initiation of DNA replication to the next initiation event. This hypothesis accounts for the experimentally observed correlations between mother and daughter cells as well as the exponential dependence of size on growth rate.

  14. Phosphatidylinositol 3-kinase signaling determines kidney size.

    PubMed

    Chen, Jian-Kang; Nagai, Kojiro; Chen, Jianchun; Plieth, David; Hino, Masayo; Xu, Jinxian; Sha, Feng; Ikizler, T Alp; Quarles, C Chad; Threadgill, David W; Neilson, Eric G; Harris, Raymond C

    2015-06-01

    Kidney size adaptively increases as mammals grow and in response to the loss of 1 kidney. It is not clear how kidneys size themselves or if the processes that adapt kidney mass to lean body mass also mediate renal hypertrophy following unilateral nephrectomy (UNX). Here, we demonstrated that mice harboring a proximal tubule-specific deletion of Pten (Pten(ptKO)) have greatly enlarged kidneys as the result of persistent activation of the class I PI3K/mTORC2/AKT pathway and an increase of the antiproliferative signals p21(Cip1/WAF) and p27(Kip1). Administration of rapamycin to Pten(ptKO) mice diminished hypertrophy. Proximal tubule-specific deletion of Egfr in Pten(ptKO) mice also attenuated class I PI3K/mTORC2/AKT signaling and reduced the size of enlarged kidneys. In Pten(ptKO) mice, UNX further increased mTORC1 activation and hypertrophy in the remaining kidney; however, mTORC2-dependent AKT phosphorylation did not increase further in the remaining kidney of Pten(ptKO) mice, nor was it induced in the remaining kidney of WT mice. After UNX, renal blood flow and amino acid delivery to the remaining kidney rose abruptly, followed by increased amino acid content and activation of a class III PI3K/mTORC1/S6K1 pathway. Thus, our findings demonstrate context-dependent roles for EGFR-modulated class I PI3K/mTORC2/AKT signaling in the normal adaptation of kidney size and PTEN-independent, nutrient-dependent class III PI3K/mTORC1/S6K1 signaling in the compensatory enlargement of the remaining kidney following UNX.

  15. Increased intracranial pressure

    MedlinePlus

    ... brain. Many conditions can increase intracranial pressure. Common causes include: Aneurysm rupture and subarachnoid hemorrhage Brain tumor Encephalitis Head injury Hydrocephalus (increased fluid around ...

  16. Pupil size behavior during online processing of sentences.

    PubMed

    Fernández, G; Biondi, J; Castro, S; Agamenonni, O

    2016-12-01

    In the present work we analyzed the pupil size behavior of 40 subjects while they read well-defined sentences with different contextual predictability (i.e., regular sentences and proverbs). In general, pupil size increased when reading regular sentences, but when readers realized that they were reading proverbs their pupils strongly increase until finishing proverbs' reading. Our results suggest that an increased pupil size is not limited to cognitive load (i.e., relative difficulty in processing) because when participants accurately recognized words during reading proverbs, theirs pupil size increased too. Our results show that pupil size dynamics may be a reliable measure to investigate the cognitive processes involved in sentence processing and memory functioning.

  17. Temperature alters food web body-size structure.

    PubMed

    Gibert, Jean P; DeLong, John P

    2014-08-01

    The increased temperature associated with climate change may have important effects on body size and predator-prey interactions. The consequences of these effects for food web structure are unclear because the relationships between temperature and aspects of food web structure such as predator-prey body-size relationships are unknown. Here, we use the largest reported dataset for marine predator-prey interactions to assess how temperature affects predator-prey body-size relationships among different habitats ranging from the tropics to the poles. We found that prey size selection depends on predator body size, temperature and the interaction between the two. Our results indicate that (i) predator-prey body-size ratios decrease with predator size at below-average temperatures and increase with predator size at above-average temperatures, and (ii) that the effect of temperature on predator-prey body-size structure will be stronger at small and large body sizes and relatively weak at intermediate sizes. This systematic interaction may help to simplify forecasting the potentially complex consequences of warming on interaction strengths and food web stability.

  18. Increasing Accuracy and Increasing Tension in Ho

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Freedman, Wendy L.

    2017-01-01

    The Hubble Constant, Ho, provides a measure of the current expansion rate of the universe. In recent decades, there has been a huge increase in the accuracy with which extragalactic distances, and hence Ho, can be measured. While the historical factor-of-two uncertainty in Ho has been resolved, a new discrepancy has arisen between the values of Ho measured in the local universe, and that estimated from cosmic microwave background measurements, assuming a Lambda cold dark matter model. I will review the advances that have led to the increase in accuracy in measurements of Ho, as well as describe exciting future prospects with the James Webb Space Telescope (JWST) and Gaia, which will make it feasible to measure extragalactic distances at percent-level accuracy in the next decade.

  19. Size matters for lice on birds: Coevolutionary allometry of host and parasite body size.

    PubMed

    Harnos, Andrea; Lang, Zsolt; Petrás, Dóra; Bush, Sarah E; Szabó, Krisztián; Rózsa, Lajos

    2017-02-01

    Body size is one of the most fundamental characteristics of all organisms. It influences physiology, morphology, behavior, and even interspecific interactions such as those between parasites and their hosts. Host body size influences the magnitude and variability of parasite size according to Harrison's rule (HR: positive relationship between host and parasite body sizes) and Poulin's Increasing Variance Hypothesis (PIVH: positive relationship between host body size and the variability of parasite body size). We analyzed parasite-host body size allometry for 581 species of avian lice (∼15% of known diversity) and their hosts. We applied phylogenetic generalized least squares (PGLS) methods to account for phylogenetic nonindependence controlling for host and parasite phylogenies separately and variance heterogeneity. We tested HR and PIVH for the major families of avian lice (Ricinidae, Menoponidae, Philopteridae), and for distinct ecological guilds within Philopteridae. Our data indicate that most families and guilds of avian lice follow both HR and PIVH; however, ricinids did not follow PIVH and the "body lice" guild of philopterid lice did not follow HR or PIVH. We discuss mathematical and ecological factors that may be responsible for these patterns, and we discuss the potential pervasiveness of these relationships among all parasites on Earth.

  20. Relationships of lipids to ovum size in amphibians.

    PubMed

    Komoroski, M J; Nagle, R D; Congdon, J D

    1998-01-01

    Relative to small embryos, large embryos may have longer developmental periods and, subsequently, relatively greater maintenance budgets. Because of the potentially increased metabolic costs of maintaining large embryos for long embryonic periods, Salthe and Mecham (1974) suggested that as ovum size increases among amphibians, ovum lipids (the primary stored metabolic energy reserves) should increase at a proportionally greater rate. To test Salthe and Mecham's hypothesis, we quantified egg lipids for 13 amphibian species from the southeastern United States. As ovum size increased among species, total, nonpolar, and polar lipids increased at rates uniform with or relatively lower than rates of increase in ovum size, in contrast to the hypothesis of Salthe and Mecham. However, variation in ovum lipids among species may be related to differences in breeding biology. Our results indicate that the amount of lipids allocated to ova do not merely depend on ovum size, but rather on the selective environments of the embryo and neonate.

  1. Directionality theory and the evolution of body size.

    PubMed

    Demetrius, L

    2000-12-07

    Directionality theory, a dynamic theory of evolution that integrates population genetics with demography, is based on the concept of evolutionary entropy, a measure of the variability in the age of reproducing individuals in a population. The main tenets of the theory are three principles relating the response to the ecological constraints a population experiences, with trends in entropy as the population evolves under mutation and natural selection. (i) Stationary size or fluctuations around a stationary size (bounded growth): a unidirectional increase in entropy; (ii) prolonged episodes of exponential growth (unbounded growth), large population size: a unidirectional decrease in entropy; and (iii) prolonged episodes of exponential growth (unbounded growth), small population size: random, non-directional change in entropy. We invoke these principles, together with an allometric relationship between entropy, and the morphometric variable body size, to provide evolutionary explanations of three empirical patterns pertaining to trends in body size, namely (i) Cope's rule, the tendency towards size increase within phyletic lineages; (ii) the island rule, which pertains to changes in body size that occur as species migrate from mainland populations to colonize island habitats; and (iii) Bergmann's rule, the tendency towards size increase with increasing latitude. The observation that these ecotypic patterns can be explained in terms of the directionality principles for entropy underscores the significance of evolutionary entropy as a unifying concept in forging a link between micro-evolution, the dynamics of gene frequency change, and macro-evolution, dynamic changes in morphometric variables.

  2. Biological motion distorts size perception

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Veto, Peter; Einhäuser, Wolfgang; Troje, Nikolaus F.

    2017-02-01

    Visual illusions explore the limits of sensory processing and provide an ideal testbed to study perception. Size illusions – stimuli whose size is consistently misperceived – do not only result from sensory cues, but can also be induced by cognitive factors, such as social status. Here we investigate, whether the ecological relevance of biological motion can also distort perceived size. We asked observers to judge the size of point-light walkers (PLWs), configurations of dots whose movements induce the perception of human movement, and visually matched control stimuli (inverted PLWs). We find that upright PLWs are consistently judged as larger than inverted PLWs, while static point-light figures do not elicit the same effect. We also show the phenomenon using an indirect paradigm: observers judged the relative size of a disc that followed an inverted PLW larger than a disc following an upright PLW. We interpret this as a contrast effect: The upright PLW is perceived larger and thus the subsequent disc is judged smaller. Together, these results demonstrate that ecologically relevant biological-motion stimuli are perceived larger than visually matched control stimuli. Our findings present a novel case of illusory size perception, where ecological importance leads to a distorted perception of size.

  3. Cell Size Control in Bacteria

    PubMed Central

    Chien, An-Chun; Hill, Norbert S.; Levin, Petra Anne

    2012-01-01

    Like eukaryotes, bacteria must coordinate division with growth to ensure cells are the appropriate size for a given environmental condition or developmental fate. As single-celled organisms, nutrient availability is one of the strongest influences on bacterial cell size. Classic physiological experiments conducted over four decades ago first demonstrated that cell size is directly correlated with nutrient source and growth rate in the Gram-negative bacterium Salmonella typhimurium. This observation subsequently served as the basis for studies revealing a role for cell size in cell cycle progression in a closely related organism, Escherichia coli. More recently, the development of powerful genetic, molecular, and imaging tools has allowed us to identify and characterize the nutrient-dependent pathway responsible for coordinating cell division and cell size with growth rate in the Gram-positive model organism B. subtilis. Here, we discuss the role of cell size in bacterial growth and development and propose a broadly applicable model for cell size control in this important and highly divergent domain of life. PMID:22575476

  4. Biological motion distorts size perception

    PubMed Central

    Veto, Peter; Einhäuser, Wolfgang; Troje, Nikolaus F.

    2017-01-01

    Visual illusions explore the limits of sensory processing and provide an ideal testbed to study perception. Size illusions – stimuli whose size is consistently misperceived – do not only result from sensory cues, but can also be induced by cognitive factors, such as social status. Here we investigate, whether the ecological relevance of biological motion can also distort perceived size. We asked observers to judge the size of point-light walkers (PLWs), configurations of dots whose movements induce the perception of human movement, and visually matched control stimuli (inverted PLWs). We find that upright PLWs are consistently judged as larger than inverted PLWs, while static point-light figures do not elicit the same effect. We also show the phenomenon using an indirect paradigm: observers judged the relative size of a disc that followed an inverted PLW larger than a disc following an upright PLW. We interpret this as a contrast effect: The upright PLW is perceived larger and thus the subsequent disc is judged smaller. Together, these results demonstrate that ecologically relevant biological-motion stimuli are perceived larger than visually matched control stimuli. Our findings present a novel case of illusory size perception, where ecological importance leads to a distorted perception of size. PMID:28205639

  5. Implant Size Availability Affects Reproduction of Distal Femoral Anatomy.

    PubMed

    Morris, William Z; Gebhart, Jeremy J; Goldberg, Victor M; Wera, Glenn D

    2016-07-01

    A total knee arthroplasty system offers more distal femoral implant anterior-posterior (AP) sizes than its predecessor. The purpose of this study is to investigate the impact of increased size availability on an implant system's ability to reproduce the AP dimension of the native distal femur. We measured 200 cadaveric femora with the AP-sizing guides of Zimmer (Warsaw, IN) NexGen (8 sizes) and Zimmer Persona (12 sizes) total knee arthroplasty systems. We defined "size deviation" as the difference in the AP dimension between the anatomic size of the native femur and the closest implant size. We defined satisfactory reproduction of distal femoral dimensions as < 1 mm difference between the implant and native femur size. The NexGen system was associated with a mean 0.46 mm greater implant size deviation than Persona (p < 0.001). When using a 1 mm size deviation as a cutoff for satisfactory replication of the native distal femoral anatomy, 85/200 specimens (42.5%) were a poor fit by NexGen, but a satisfactory fit by Persona. Only 1/200 specimens (0.5%) was a poor fit by Persona, but a satisfactory fit by NexGen (p < 0.001). The novel knee system with 12 versus 8 sizes reproduces the AP dimension of the native distal femur more closely than its predecessor. Further study is needed to determine the clinical impact of these differences.

  6. Colloid particle size-dependent dispersivity

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chrysikopoulos, C. V.; Katzourakis, V. E.

    2014-12-01

    Laboratory and field studies have demonstrated that dispersion coefficients evaluated by fitting advection-dispersion transport models to nonreactive tracer breakthrough curves do not adequately describe colloid transport under the same flow field conditions. Here an extensive laboratory study was undertaken to assess whether the dispersivity, which traditionally has been considered to be a property of the porous medium, is dependent on colloid particle size and interstitial velocity. A total of 49 colloid transport experiments were performed in columns packed with glass beads under chemically unfavorable colloid attachment conditions. Nine different colloid diameters, and various flow velocities were examined. The breakthrough curves were successfully simulated with a mathematical model describing colloid transport in homogeneous, water saturated porous media. The results demonstrated that the dispersivity is positively correlated with colloid particle size, and increases with increasing velocity.

  7. Size Bias in Galaxy Surveys

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Schmidt, Fabian; Rozo, Eduardo; Dodelson, Scott; Hui, Lam; Sheldon, Erin

    2009-07-01

    Only certain galaxies are included in surveys: those bright and large enough to be detectable as extended sources. Because gravitational lensing can make galaxies appear both brighter and larger, the presence of foreground inhomogeneities can scatter galaxies across not only magnitude cuts but also size cuts, changing the statistical properties of the resulting catalog. Here we explore this size bias and how it combines with magnification bias to affect galaxy statistics. We demonstrate that photometric galaxy samples from current and upcoming surveys can be even more affected by size bias than by magnification bias.

  8. Cavitation erosion size scale effects

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Rao, P. V.; Buckley, D. H.

    1984-01-01

    Size scaling in cavitation erosion is a major problem confronting the design engineers of modern high speed machinery. An overview and erosion data analysis presented in this paper indicate that the size scale exponent n in the erosion rate relationship as a function of the size or diameter can vary from 1.7 to 4.9 depending on the type of device used. There is, however, a general agreement as to the values of n if the correlations are made with constant cavitation number.

  9. Mevalonate Pathway Regulates Cell Size Homeostasis and Proteostasis through Autophagy

    PubMed Central

    Miettinen, Teemu P.; Björklund, Mikael

    2015-01-01

    Summary Balance between cell growth and proliferation determines cell size homeostasis, but little is known about how metabolic pathways are involved in the maintenance of this balance. Here, we perform a screen with a library of clinically used drug molecules for their effects on cell size. We find that statins, inhibitors of the mevalonate pathway, reduce cell proliferation and increase cell size and cellular protein density in various cell types, including primary human cells. Mevalonate pathway effects on cell size and protein density are mediated through geranylgeranylation of the small GTPase RAB11, which is required for basal autophagic flux. Our results identify the mevalonate pathway as a metabolic regulator of autophagy and expose a paradox in the regulation of cell size and proteostasis, where inhibition of an anabolic pathway can cause an increase in cell size and cellular protein density. PMID:26686643

  10. Does clutch size evolve in response to parasites and immunocompetence?

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Martin, T.E.; Moller, A.P.; Merino, S.; Clobert, J.

    2001-01-01

    Parasites have been argued to influence clutch size evolution, but past work and theory has largely focused on within-species optimization solutions rather than clearly addressing among-species variation. The effects of parasites on clutch size variation among species can be complex, however, because different parasites can induce age-specific differences in mortality that can cause clutch size to evolve in different directions. We provide a conceptual argument that differences in immunocompetence among species should integrate differences in overall levels of parasite-induced mortality to which a species is exposed. We test this assumption and show that mortality caused by parasites is positively correlated with immunocompetence measured by cell-mediated measures. Under life history theory, clutch size should increase with increased adult mortality and decrease with increased juvenile mortality. Using immunocompetence as a general assay of parasite-induced mortality, we tested these predictions by using data for 25 species. We found that clutch size increased strongly with adult immunocompetence. In contrast, clutch size decreased weakly with increased juvenile immunocompetence. But, immunocompetence of juveniles may be constrained by selection on adults, and, when we controlled for adult immunocompetence, clutch size decreased with juvenile immunocompetence. Thus, immunocompetence seems to reflect evolutionary differences in parasite virulence experienced by species, and differences in age-specific parasite virulence appears to exert opposite selection on clutch size evolution.

  11. Scaling of Foraminifera Parent and Offspring Size through the Phanerozoic

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Guo, D.; Holme, F.; Payne, J.; Skotheim, J.

    2011-12-01

    Since before the 1940s, scientists have studied the scaling of body mass with metabolic rate, heart rate, fecundity, cardiac cycling rate, and numerous other traits. Like these traits, offspring mass scales with parent body mass for plants and animals. However, the relationship is not well documented in single-celled organisms. In our study, we examined how adult size scales with embryo size in fusulinid foraminifera. Fusulinids, and most other foraminifera, are an exceptional study group because the proloculus (the initial shell chamber) can be used to measure the size of the daughter cell at the time it became independent of its parent. We find that proloculus size increases with adult test size across fusulinid species. This pattern may result because the genomic sizes and the cellular machinery necessary for a larger adult size place limits on how small the initial daughter cell can be.

  12. Effects of meaning and symmetry on judgments of size.

    PubMed

    Reber, Rolf; Christensen, Bo T; Meier, Beat

    2014-01-01

    Research has shown that people judge words as having bigger font size than non-words. This finding has been interpreted in terms of processing fluency, with higher fluency leading to judgments of bigger size. If so, symmetric numbers (e.g., 44) which can be processed more fluently are predicted to be judged as larger than asymmetric numbers (e.g., 43). However, recent research found that symmetric numbers were judged to be smaller than asymmetric numbers. This finding suggests that the mechanisms underlying size judgments may differ in meaningful and meaningless materials. Supporting this notion, we showed in Experiment 1 that meaning increased judged size, whereas symmetry decreased judged size. In the next two experiments, we excluded several alternative explanations for the differences in size judgments between meaningful and meaningless materials in earlier studies. This finding contradicts the notion that the mechanism underlying judgments of size is processing fluency.

  13. Method for sizing hollow microspheres

    DOEpatents

    Farnum, E.H.; Fries, R.J.

    1975-10-29

    Hollow Microspheres may be effectively sized by placing them beneath a screen stack completely immersed in an ultrasonic bath containing a liquid having a density at which the microspheres float and ultrasonically agitating the bath.

  14. Computer sizing of fighter aircraft

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Coen, P. G.; Foss, W. E., Jr.

    1985-01-01

    The computer sizing technique has been applied to a number of military mission profiles. Performance data can be determined for all segments of the selected profile, which typically include takeoff, climb, cruise, loiter, reserve and landing segments. Options are available for detailed calculation of combat performance and energy-maneuverability characteristics. Configuration changes, such as external fuel tank drop and weapon expenditure, can be included in the mission. In the sizing mode, aircraft gross weight, wing loading, and thrust-to-weight ratio are varied automatically to determine which combinations meet the design mission radius. The resulting performance data can be used to create a thumbprint plot. This plot is useful in determining the configuration size that best satisfies the mission and performance requirements. The sizing mode can also be used to perform parametric studies such as sensitivity of gross weight to alternate design conditions.

  15. Computer sizing of fighter aircraft

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Coen, P. G.; Foss, W. E., Jr.

    1986-01-01

    The computer sizing technique has been applied to a number of military mission profiles. Performance data can be determined for all segments of the selected profile, which typically include takeoff, climb, cruise, loiter, reserve and landing segments. Options are available for detailed calculation of combat performance and energy-maneuverability characteristics. Configuration changes, such as external fuel tank drop and weapon expenditure, can be included in the mission. In the sizing mode, aircraft gross weight, wing loading, and thrust-to-weight ratio are varied automatically to determine which combinations meet the design mission radius. The resulting performance data can be used to create a thumbprint plot. This plot is useful in determining the configuration size that best satisfies the mission and performance requirements. The sizing mode can also be used to perform parametric studies such as sensitivity of gross weight to alternate design conditions.

  16. Epigenetic effects of nano-sized materials.

    PubMed

    Stoccoro, Andrea; Karlsson, Hanna L; Coppedè, Fabio; Migliore, Lucia

    2013-11-08

    The term epigenetics includes several phenomena such as DNA methylation, histone tail modifications, and microRNA mediated mechanisms, which are able to mold the chromatin structure and/or gene expression levels, without altering the primary DNA sequence. Environmental agents can exert epigenetic properties and there is increasing evidence of epigenetic deregulation of gene expression in several human diseases, including cancer, cardiovascular diseases, autism spectrum disorders, autoimmune diseases, and neurodegeneration, among others. Given the widespread use and dispersion in the environment of nano-sized materials, this article summarizes the studies performed so far to evaluate their potential epigenetic properties. Those studies highlight the ability of certain nano-sized compounds to induce an impaired expression of genes involved in DNA methylation reactions leading to global DNA methylation changes, as well as changes of gene specific methylation of tumor suppressor genes, inflammatory genes, and DNA repair genes, all potentially involved in cancer development. Moreover, some nano-sized compounds are able to induce changes in the acetylation and methylation of histone tails, as well as microRNA deregulated expression. We also provided a detailed description of currently available methodologies to evaluate epigenetic modifications. Standard protocols are currently available to evaluate cytotoxic and genotoxic effects of nano-sized materials. By contrast, there are at present no available standard protocols to evaluate the epigenetic potential of any given compound. The currently available methodologies offer different, but often complementary information to characterize potential epigenetic changes induced by exposure to nano-sized compounds. Given the widespread use and dispersion in the environment of nano-sized materials, at present and foreseeable in the near future, and in light of the indication of potential epigenetic properties here reviewed, more

  17. Does Group Size Matter for Behavior in Online Trust Dilemmas?

    PubMed Central

    Artinger, Sabrina; Vulkan, Nir

    2016-01-01

    How does group size influence behavior in online trust dilemmas? We investigate cooperation in groups of 4 to 100 players. While overall levels of cooperation are stable across group sizes, we find significant gender differences: women increase cooperation with group size and cooperate significantly more than men in large groups. These results are robust when controlling for risk aversion, age, and other individual differences. They highlight the importance of studying behavior and gender differences in large groups. PMID:27898667

  18. Size-dependent density of zirconia nanoparticles

    PubMed Central

    Opalinska, Agnieszka; Dzwolak, Wojciech; Chudoba, Tadeusz; Presz, Adam; Lojkowski, Witold

    2015-01-01

    Summary The correlation between density and specific surface area of ZrO2 nanoparticles (NPs) was studied. The NPs were produced using a hydrothermal process involving microwave heating. The material was annealed at 1100 °C which resulted in an increase in the average grain size of the ZrO2 NPs from 11 to 78 nm and a decrease in the specific surface area from 97 to 15 m2/g. At the same time, the density increased from 5.22 g/m3 to 5.87 g/m3. This effect was interpreted to be the result of the presence of a hydroxide monolayer on the NP surface. A smaller ZrO2 grain size was correlated with a larger contribution of the low density surface layer to the average density. To prove the existence of such a layer, the material was synthesized using 50% heavy water. Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy (FTIR) permitted the identification of the –OD groups created during synthesis. It was found that the –OD groups persisted on the ZrO2 surface even after annealing at 1100 °C. This hydroxide layer is responsible for the decrease in the average density of the NPs as their size decreases. This study of the correlation between particle size and density may be used to assess the quality of the NPs. In most cases, the technological aim is to avoid an amorphous layer and to obtain fully crystalline nanoparticles with the highest density possible. However, due to the effect of the surface layers, there is a maximum density which can be achieved for a given average NP diameter. The effect of the surface layer on the NP density becomes particularly evident for NPs smaller than 50 nm, and thus, the density of nanoparticles is size dependent. PMID:25671149

  19. Centaur size distribution with DECam

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Fuentes, Cesar; Trilling, David E.; Schlichting, Hilke

    2014-11-01

    We present the results of the 2014 centaur search campaign on the Dark Energy Camera (DECam) in Tololo, Chile. This is the largest debiased Centaur survey to date, measuring for the first time the size distribution of small Centaurs (1-10km) and the first time the sizes of planetesimals from which the entire Solar System formed are directly detected.The theoretical model for the coagulation and collisional evolution of the outer solar system proposed in Schlichting et al. 2013 predicts a steep rise in the size distribution of TNOs smaller than 10km. These objects are below the detection limit of current TNO surveys but feasible for the Centaur population. By constraining the number of Centaurs and this feature in their size distribution we can confirm the collisional evolution of the Solar System and estimate the rate at which material is being transferred from the outer to the inner Solar System. If the shallow power law behavior from the TNO size distribution at ~40km can be extrapolated to 1km, the size of the Jupiter Family of Comets (JFC), there would not be enough small TNOs to supply the JFC population (Volk & Malhotra, 2008), debunking the link between TNOs and JFCs.We also obtain the colors of small Centaurs and TNOs, providing a signature of collisional evolution by measuring if there is in fact a relationship between color and size. If objects smaller than the break in the TNO size distribution are being ground down by collisions then their surfaces should be fresh, and then appear bluer in the optical than larger TNOs that are not experiencing collisions.

  20. Portable Slot-Sizing Tool

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Zuver, Nelson T.

    1987-01-01

    Portable milling tool consisting of air-motor-driven cutter held in adjustable moving slide made possible local removal of chromium plating in close-tolerance, onsite remachining and sizing of half-hole slots on longeron bridges. Made from commercially available parts, including air motor capable of variable speeds up to 900 rpm, ball end mill, revolving handle, two miter gears, and ball slide. Adaptation of portable sizing tool useful for field modification of such large equipment as trucks, aircraft, and ships.

  1. Sexual size dimorphism in anurans.

    PubMed Central

    Monnet, Jean-Matthieu; Cherry, Michael I

    2002-01-01

    Several hypotheses have been proposed to explain the direction and extent of sexual size dimorphism in anurans (in which males are usually smaller than females) as a result of sexual selection. Here, we present an analysis to test the hypothesis that sexual dimorphism in anurans is largely a function of differences between the sexes in life-history strategies. Morphological and demographic data for anurans were collected from the literature, and the mean size and age in each sex were calculated for 51 populations, across 30 species and eight genera. Comparisons across 14 Rana species, eight Bufo species and across the genera showed a highly significant relationship between size dimorphism, measured using the female-male size ratio, and mean female-male age difference. A comparison of a subset of 17 of these species for which phylogenetic information was available, using the method of independent contrasts, yielded a similar result. These results indicate that most of the variation in size dimorphism in the anura can be explained in terms of differences in the age structure between the sexes in breeding populations. If sexual selection has an effect on size dimorphism in anurans, it is likely to be only a secondary one. PMID:12495496

  2. Effective population size and inbreeding depression on litter size in rabbits. A case study.

    PubMed

    Ragab, M; Sánchez, J P; Baselga, M

    2015-02-01

    The purpose of this study is to use demographic and litter size data on four Spanish maternal lines of rabbits (A, V, H and LP), as a case study, in order to: (i) estimate the effective population size of the lines, as a measure of the rate of increase of inbreeding, and (ii) study whether the inbreeding effect on litter size traits depends on the pattern of its accumulation over time. The lines are being selected for litter size at weaning and are kept closed at the same selection nucleus under the same selection and management programme. The study considered 47,794 l and a pedigree of 14,622 animals. Some practices in mating and selection management allow an increase of the inbreeding coefficient lower than 0.01 per generation in these lines of around 25 males and 125 females. Their effective population size (Ne) was around 57.3, showing that the effect of selection, increasing the inbreeding, was counterbalanced by the management practices, intended to reduce the rate of inbreeding increase. The inbreeding of each individual was broken down into three components: old, intermediate and new inbreeding. The coefficients of regression of the old, intermediate and new inbreeding on total born (TB), number born alive (NBA) and number weaned (NW) per litter showed a decreasing trend from positive to negative values. Regression coefficients significantly different from zero were those for the old inbreeding on TB (6.79 ± 2.37) and NBA (5.92 ± 2.37). The contrast between the coefficients of regression between the old and new inbreeding were significant for the three litter size traits: 7.57 ± 1.72 for TB; 6.66 ± 1.73 for NBA and 5.13 ± 1.67 for NW. These results have been interpreted as the combined action of purging unfavourable genes and artificial selection favoured by the inbreeding throughout the generations of selection.

  3. Body size and predatory performance in wolves: Is bigger better?

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    MacNulty, D.R.; Smith, D.W.; Mech, L.D.; Eberly, L.E.

    2009-01-01

    Large body size hinders locomotor performance in ways that may lead to trade-offs in predator foraging ability that limit the net predatory benefit of larger size. For example, size-related improvements in handling prey may come at the expense of pursuing prey and thus negate any enhancement in overall predatory performance due to increasing size. 2. This hypothesis was tested with longitudinal data from repeated observations of 94 individually known wolves (Canis lupus) hunting elk (Cervus elaphus) in Yellowstone National Park, USA. Wolf size was estimated from an individually based sex-specific growth model derived from body mass measurements of 304 wolves. 3. Larger size granted individual wolves a net predatory advantage despite substantial variation in its effect on the performance of different predatory tasks; larger size improved performance of a strength-related task (grappling and subduing elk) but failed to improve performance of a locomotor-related task (selecting an elk from a group) for wolves > 39 kg. 4. Sexual dimorphism in wolf size also explained why males outperformed females in each of the three tasks considered (attacking, selecting, and killing). 5. These findings support the generalization that bigger predators are overall better hunters, but they also indicate that increasing size ultimately limits elements of predatory behaviour that require superior locomotor performance. We argue that this could potentially narrow the dietary niche of larger carnivores as well as limit the evolution of larger size if prey are substantially more difficult to pursue than to handle. ?? 2009 British Ecological Society.

  4. Body size and predatory performance in wolves: is bigger better?

    PubMed

    MacNulty, Daniel R; Smith, Douglas W; Mech, L David; Eberly, Lynn E

    2009-05-01

    1. Large body size hinders locomotor performance in ways that may lead to trade-offs in predator foraging ability that limit the net predatory benefit of larger size. For example, size-related improvements in handling prey may come at the expense of pursuing prey and thus negate any enhancement in overall predatory performance due to increasing size. 2. This hypothesis was tested with longitudinal data from repeated observations of 94 individually known wolves (Canis lupus) hunting elk (Cervus elaphus) in Yellowstone National Park, USA. Wolf size was estimated from an individually based sex-specific growth model derived from body mass measurements of 304 wolves. 3. Larger size granted individual wolves a net predatory advantage despite substantial variation in its effect on the performance of different predatory tasks; larger size improved performance of a strength-related task (grappling and subduing elk) but failed to improve performance of a locomotor-related task (selecting an elk from a group) for wolves > 39 kg. 4. Sexual dimorphism in wolf size also explained why males outperformed females in each of the three tasks considered (attacking, selecting, and killing). 5. These findings support the generalization that bigger predators are overall better hunters, but they also indicate that increasing size ultimately limits elements of predatory behaviour that require superior locomotor performance. We argue that this could potentially narrow the dietary niche of larger carnivores as well as limit the evolution of larger size if prey are substantially more difficult to pursue than to handle.

  5. Unfolding grain size effects in barium titanate ferroelectric ceramics

    PubMed Central

    Tan, Yongqiang; Zhang, Jialiang; Wu, Yanqing; Wang, Chunlei; Koval, Vladimir; Shi, Baogui; Ye, Haitao; McKinnon, Ruth; Viola, Giuseppe; Yan, Haixue

    2015-01-01

    Grain size effects on the physical properties of polycrystalline ferroelectrics have been extensively studied for decades; however there are still major controversies regarding the dependence of the piezoelectric and ferroelectric properties on the grain size. Dense BaTiO3 ceramics with different grain sizes were fabricated by either conventional sintering or spark plasma sintering using micro- and nano-sized powders. The results show that the grain size effect on the dielectric permittivity is nearly independent of the sintering method and starting powder used. A peak in the permittivity is observed in all the ceramics with a grain size near 1 μm and can be attributed to a maximum domain wall density and mobility. The piezoelectric coefficient d33 and remnant polarization Pr show diverse grain size effects depending on the particle size of the starting powder and sintering temperature. This suggests that besides domain wall density, other factors such as back fields and point defects, which influence the domain wall mobility, could be responsible for the different grain size dependence observed in the dielectric and piezoelectric/ferroelectric properties. In cases where point defects are not the dominant contributor, the piezoelectric constant d33 and the remnant polarization Pr increase with increasing grain size. PMID:25951408

  6. Increased head circumference

    MedlinePlus

    ... page: //medlineplus.gov/ency/article/003305.htm Increased head circumference To use the sharing features on this page, please enable JavaScript. Increased head circumference is when the measured distance around the ...

  7. Evolved star water maser cloud size determined by star size

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Richards, A. M. S.; Etoka, S.; Gray, M. D.; Lekht, E. E.; Mendoza-Torres, J. E.; Murakawa, K.; Rudnitskij, G.; Yates, J. A.

    2012-10-01

    Context. Cool, evolved stars undergo copious mass loss but the detailed mechanisms and the form in which the matter is returned to the ISM are still under debate. Aims: We investigated the structure and evolution of the wind at 5 to 50 stellar radii from asymptotic giant branch and red supergiant stars. Methods: 22-GHz water masers around seven evolved stars were imaged using MERLIN, at sub-AU resolution. Each source was observed at between 2 and 7 epochs, covering several stellar periods. We compared our results with long-term single dish monitoring provided by the Pushchino radio telescope. Results: The 22-GHz emission is located in approximately spherical, thick, unevenly filled shells. The outflow velocity increases twofold or more between the inner and outer shell limits. Water maser clumps could be matched at successive epochs separated by less than two years for AGB stars, or at least 5 years for RSG. This is much shorter than the decades taken for the wind to cross the maser shell, and comparison with spectral monitoring shows that some features fade and reappear. In five sources, most of the matched maser features brighten or dim in concert from one epoch to the next. A number of individual maser features show idiosyncratic behaviour, including one cloud in W Hya caught in the act of passing in front of a background cloud leading to 50-fold, transient amplification. The masing clouds are one or two orders of magnitude denser than the wind average and contain a substantial fraction of the mass loss in this region, with a filling factor <1%. The RSG clouds are about ten times bigger than those round the AGB stars. Conclusions: Proper motions are dominated by expansion, with no systematic rotation. The maser clouds presumably survive for decades (the shell crossing time) but the masers are not always beamed in our direction. Only radiative effects can explain changes in flux density throughout the maser shells on short timescales. The size of the clouds is

  8. No Latitudinal Trends in Body Size of Foraminifera

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Liao, Z.; Payne, J.; Seixas, G.

    2012-12-01

    Many organisms, such as penguins and polar bears, follow Bergmann's rule, which states that body size of animals tends to increase as temperature decreases, and thus as latitude increases toward to poles. A study of marine mollusk bivalves across a latitudinal gradient found no correlation between body size and latitude along the North American Pacific Coast, suggesting that the body size of marine bivalves might be controlled by other factors. This posed the question: Is there a lack of correlation between latitude and body size for all marine invertebrates or is it unique to marine bivalves? In this study, we examined four suborders of benthic foraminifera, Lagenina, Miliolina, Rotaliina, and Textulariina, a diverse phylum of amoeboid protists, to determine the relationship between body size and latitude within and across suborders at the global scale. We measured the shell (test) dimensions of foraminifera from a compilation of monograph images of type specimens. The mean test size as well as the maximum body size of those