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Sample records for optimizes functional inhibition

  1. Optimal Decision Making in Neural Inhibition Models

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    van Ravenzwaaij, Don; van der Maas, Han L. J.; Wagenmakers, Eric-Jan

    2012-01-01

    In their influential "Psychological Review" article, Bogacz, Brown, Moehlis, Holmes, and Cohen (2006) discussed optimal decision making as accomplished by the drift diffusion model (DDM). The authors showed that neural inhibition models, such as the leaky competing accumulator model (LCA) and the feedforward inhibition model (FFI), can mimic the…

  2. Optimal Decision Making in Neural Inhibition Models

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    van Ravenzwaaij, Don; van der Maas, Han L. J.; Wagenmakers, Eric-Jan

    2012-01-01

    In their influential "Psychological Review" article, Bogacz, Brown, Moehlis, Holmes, and Cohen (2006) discussed optimal decision making as accomplished by the drift diffusion model (DDM). The authors showed that neural inhibition models, such as the leaky competing accumulator model (LCA) and the feedforward inhibition model (FFI), can mimic the…

  3. Pharmacodynamic effects of cangrelor and clopidogrel: the platelet function substudy from the cangrelor versus standard therapy to achieve optimal management of platelet inhibition (CHAMPION) trials.

    PubMed

    Angiolillo, Dominick J; Schneider, David J; Bhatt, Deepak L; French, William J; Price, Matthew J; Saucedo, Jorge F; Shaburishvili, Tamaz; Huber, Kurt; Prats, Jayne; Liu, Tiepu; Harrington, Robert A; Becker, Richard C

    2012-07-01

    Cangrelor is an intravenous antagonist of the P2Y(12) receptor characterized by rapid, potent, predictable, and reversible platelet inhibition. However, cangrelor was not superior to clopidogrel in reducing the incidence of ischemic events in the cangrelor versus standard therapy to achieve optimal management of platelet inhibition (CHAMPION) trials. A prospectively designed platelet function substudy was performed in a selected cohort of patients to provide insight into the pharmacodynamic effects of cangrelor, particularly in regard to whether cangrelor therapy may interfere with the inhibitory effects of clopidogrel. This pre-defined substudy was conducted in a subset of patients from the CHAMPION-PCI trial (n = 230) comparing cangrelor with 600 mg of clopidogrel administered before percutaneous coronary intervention (PCI) and from the CHAMPION-PLATFORM trial (n = 4) comparing cangrelor at the time of PCI and 600 mg clopidogrel given after the PCI. Pharmacodynamic measures included P2Y12 reaction units (PRU) assessed by VerifyNow P2Y12 testing (primary endpoint marker), platelet aggregation by light transmittance aggregometry following 5 and 20 μmol/L adenosine diphosphate stimuli, and markers of platelet activation determined by flow cytometry. The primary endpoint was the percentage of patients who achieved <20 % change in PRU between baseline and >10 h after PCI. The main trial was stopped early limiting enrollment in the platelet substudy. A total of 167 patients had valid pharmacodynamic assessments for the primary endpoint. The percent of individuals achieving <20 % change in PRU between baseline and >10 h after PCI was higher with cangrelor + clopidogrel (32/84, 38.1 %) compared with placebo + clopidogrel (21/83, 25.3 %), but this was not statistically significant (difference:12.79 %, 95 % CI: -1.18 %, 26.77 %;p = 0.076). All pharmacodynamic markers as well as the prevalence of patients with high on-treatment platelet reactivity were significantly lower

  4. Optimal inverse functions created via population-based optimization.

    PubMed

    Jennings, Alan L; Ordóñez, Raúl

    2014-06-01

    Finding optimal inputs for a multiple-input, single-output system is taxing for a system operator. Population-based optimization is used to create sets of functions that produce a locally optimal input based on a desired output. An operator or higher level planner could use one of the functions in real time. For the optimization, each agent in the population uses the cost and output gradients to take steps lowering the cost while maintaining their current output. When an agent reaches an optimal input for its current output, additional agents are generated in the output gradient directions. The new agents then settle to the local optima for the new output values. The set of associated optimal points forms an inverse function, via spline interpolation, from a desired output to an optimal input. In this manner, multiple locally optimal functions can be created. These functions are naturally clustered in input and output spaces allowing for a continuous inverse function. The operator selects the best cluster over the anticipated range of desired outputs and adjusts the set point (desired output) while maintaining optimality. This reduces the demand from controlling multiple inputs, to controlling a single set point with no loss in performance. Results are demonstrated on a sample set of functions and on a robot control problem.

  5. Structural and functional bases of inhibited temperament.

    PubMed

    Clauss, Jacqueline A; Seay, April L; VanDerKlok, Ross M; Avery, Suzanne N; Cao, Aize; Cowan, Ronald L; Benningfield, Margaret M; Blackford, Jennifer Urbano

    2014-12-01

    Children born with an inhibited temperament are at heightened risk for developing anxiety, depression and substance use. Inhibited temperament is believed to have a biological basis; however, little is known about the structural brain basis of this vulnerability trait. Structural MRI scans were obtained from 84 (44 inhibited, 40 uninhibited) young adults. Given previous findings of amygdala hyperactivity in inhibited individuals, groups were compared on three measures of amygdala structure. To identify novel substrates of inhibited temperament, a whole brain analysis was performed. Functional activation and connectivity were examined across both groups. Inhibited adults had larger amygdala and caudate volume and larger volume predicted greater activation to neutral faces. In addition, larger amygdala volume predicted greater connectivity with subcortical and higher order visual structures. Larger caudate volume predicted greater connectivity with the basal ganglia, and less connectivity with primary visual and auditory cortex. We propose that larger volume in these salience detection regions may result in increased activation and enhanced connectivity in response to social stimuli. Given the strong link between inhibited temperament and risk for psychiatric illness, novel therapeutics that target these brain regions and related neural circuits have the potential to reduce rates of illness in vulnerable individuals. © The Author (2014). Published by Oxford University Press. For Permissions, please email: journals.permissions@oup.com.

  6. Optimality Functions in Stochastic Programming

    DTIC Science & Technology

    2009-12-02

    nonconvex. Non - convex stochastic optimization problems arise in such diverse applications as estimation of mixed logit models [2], engineering design...first- order necessary optimality conditions ; see for example Propositions 3.3.1 and 3.3.5 in [7] or Theorem 2.2.4 in [25]. If the evaluation of f j...procedures for validation analysis of a candidate point x ∈ IRn. Since P may be nonconvex, we focus on first-order necessary optimality conditions as

  7. Discrete Variables Function Optimization Using Accelerated Biogeography-Based Optimization

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lohokare, M. R.; Pattnaik, S. S.; Devi, S.; Panigrahi, B. K.; Das, S.; Jadhav, D. G.

    Biogeography-Based Optimization (BBO) is a bio-inspired and population based optimization algorithm. This is mainly formulated to optimize functions of discrete variables. But the convergence of BBO to the optimum value is slow as it lacks in exploration ability. The proposed Accelerated Biogeography-Based Optimization (ABBO) technique is an improved version of BBO. In this paper, authors accelerated the original BBO to enhance the exploitation and exploration ability by modified mutation operator and clear duplicate operator. This significantly improves the convergence characteristics of the original algorithm. To validate the performance of ABBO, experiments have been conducted on unimodal and multimodal benchmark functions of discrete variables. The results shows excellent performance when compared with other modified BBOs and other optimization techniques like stud genetic algorithm (SGA) and ant colony optimization (ACO). The results are also analyzed by using two paired t- test.

  8. Optimality Functions and Lopsided Convergence

    DTIC Science & Technology

    2015-03-16

    Royset and E.Y. Pee . Rate of convergence analysis of discretization and smoothing algorithms for semi-infinite minimax problems. Journal of Optimization Theory and Applications, 155(3):855– 882, 2012. 17

  9. Hawthorn extract inhibits human isolated neutrophil functions.

    PubMed

    Dalli, Ernesto; Milara, Javier; Cortijo, Julio; Morcillo, Esteban J; Cosín-Sales, Juan; Sotillo, José Francisco

    2008-06-01

    Hawthorn extract is a popular herbal medicine given as adjunctive treatment for chronic heart failure. In contrast to the cardiac properties of hawthorn extract, its anti-inflammatory effect has been scarcely investigated. This study examines the effects of a dry extract of leaves and flowers of Crataegus laevigata on various functional outputs of human neutrophils in vitro. Incubation of human neutrophils obtained from peripheral blood of healthy donors with C. laevigata extract (0.75-250 microg/ml) inhibited N-formyl-Met-Leu-Phe (FMLP)-induced superoxide anion generation, elastase release and chemotactic migration with potency values of 43.6, 21.9, and 31.6 microg/ml, respectively. By contrast, serum-opsonized zymosan-induced phagocytosis was unaltered by plant extract. C. laevigata extract (125 microg/ml) reduced FMLP-induced leukotriene B(4) production and lipopolysaccharide-induced generation of tumour necrosis factor-alpha and interleukin-8. Extract inhibited FMLP-induced intracellular calcium signal with potency of 17.4 microg/ml. Extract also markedly inhibited the extracellular calcium entry into calcium-depleted neutrophils, and the thapsigargin-induced intracellular calcium response. In conclusion, C. laevigata extract inhibited various functional outputs of activated human neutrophils which may be relevant to the pathophysiology of cardiac failure.

  10. Partial inhibition and bilevel optimization in flux balance analysis

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    Motivation Within Flux Balance Analysis, the investigation of complex subtasks, such as finding the optimal perturbation of the network or finding an optimal combination of drugs, often requires to set up a bilevel optimization problem. In order to keep the linearity and convexity of these nested optimization problems, an ON/OFF description of the effect of the perturbation (i.e. Boolean variable) is normally used. This restriction may not be realistic when one wants, for instance, to describe the partial inhibition of a reaction induced by a drug. Results In this paper we present a formulation of the bilevel optimization which overcomes the oversimplified ON/OFF modeling while preserving the linear nature of the problem. A case study is considered: the search of the best multi-drug treatment which modulates an objective reaction and has the minimal perturbation on the whole network. The drug inhibition is described and modulated through a convex combination of a fixed number of Boolean variables. The results obtained from the application of the algorithm to the core metabolism of E.coli highlight the possibility of finding a broader spectrum of drug combinations compared to a simple ON/OFF modeling. Conclusions The method we have presented is capable of treating partial inhibition inside a bilevel optimization, without loosing the linearity property, and with reasonable computational performances also on large metabolic networks. The more fine-graded representation of the perturbation allows to enlarge the repertoire of synergistic combination of drugs for tasks such as selective perturbation of cellular metabolism. This may encourage the use of the approach also for other cases in which a more realistic modeling is required. PMID:24286232

  11. Directed evolution: new parts and optimized function.

    PubMed

    Dougherty, Michael J; Arnold, Frances H

    2009-08-01

    Constructing novel biological systems that function in a robust and predictable manner requires better methods for discovering new functional molecules and for optimizing their assembly in novel biological contexts. By enabling functional diversification and optimization in the absence of detailed mechanistic understanding, directed evolution is a powerful complement to 'rational' engineering approaches. Aided by clever selection schemes, directed evolution has generated new parts for genetic circuits, cell-cell communication systems, and non-natural metabolic pathways in bacteria.

  12. Antibiotic inhibition of group I ribozyme function.

    PubMed

    von Ahsen, U; Davies, J; Schroeder, R

    1991-09-26

    The discovery of catalytically active RNA has provided the basis for the evolutionary concept of an RNA world. It has been proposed that during evolution the functions of ancient catalytic RNA were modulated by low molecular weight effectors, related to antibiotics, present in the primordial soup. Antibiotics and RNA may have coevolved in the formation of the modern ribosome. Here we report that a set of aminoglycoside antibiotics, which are known to interact with the decoding region of the 16S ribosomal RNA of Escherichia coli, inhibit the second step of splicing of the T4 phage-derived td intron. Thus catalytic RNA seems to interact not only with a mononucleotide and an amino acid, but also with another class of biomolecules, the sugars. Splicing of other group I introns but not group II introns was inhibited. The similarity in affinity and specificity of these antibiotics for group I introns and rRNAs may result from recognition of evolutionarily conserved structures.

  13. Do optimism and pessimism predict physical functioning?

    PubMed

    Brenes, Gretchen A; Rapp, Stephen R; Rejeski, W Jack; Miller, Michael E

    2002-06-01

    Dispositional optimism has been shown to be related to self-report measures of health and well-being, yet little research has examined the relationship between optimism and more objective measures of functioning. The purpose of this study was to examine the relationship between optimism and pessimism and objective physical functioning. Four hundred eighty community-dwelling older adults with knee pain completed a measure of optimism and pessimism and were observed performing four daily activities (walking, lifting an object, climbing stairs, and getting into and out of a car). Results indicated that pessimism was significantly related to performance on all four tasks (p < .001), while optimism was related to performance only on the walking task (p < .05), after controlling for demographic and health variables.

  14. Optimizing Reduced-Order Transfer Functions

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Spanos, John T.; Milman, Mark H.; Mingori, D. Lewis

    1992-01-01

    Transfer-function approximations made optimal in special least-squares sense. Algorithm computes reduced-order rational-fraction approximates to single-input/single-output transfer functions. Reduces amount of computation needed for such purposes as numerical simulation of dynamics and design of control subsystems.

  15. Nitric oxide synthases: structure, function and inhibition.

    PubMed Central

    Alderton, W K; Cooper, C E; Knowles, R G

    2001-01-01

    This review concentrates on advances in nitric oxide synthase (NOS) structure, function and inhibition made in the last seven years, during which time substantial advances have been made in our understanding of this enzyme family. There is now information on the enzyme structure at all levels from primary (amino acid sequence) to quaternary (dimerization, association with other proteins) structure. The crystal structures of the oxygenase domains of inducible NOS (iNOS) and vascular endothelial NOS (eNOS) allow us to interpret other information in the context of this important part of the enzyme, with its binding sites for iron protoporphyrin IX (haem), biopterin, L-arginine, and the many inhibitors which interact with them. The exact nature of the NOS reaction, its mechanism and its products continue to be sources of controversy. The role of the biopterin cofactor is now becoming clearer, with emerging data implicating one-electron redox cycling as well as the multiple allosteric effects on enzyme activity. Regulation of the NOSs has been described at all levels from gene transcription to covalent modification and allosteric regulation of the enzyme itself. A wide range of NOS inhibitors have been discussed, interacting with the enzyme in diverse ways in terms of site and mechanism of inhibition, time-dependence and selectivity for individual isoforms, although there are many pitfalls and misunderstandings of these aspects. Highly selective inhibitors of iNOS versus eNOS and neuronal NOS have been identified and some of these have potential in the treatment of a range of inflammatory and other conditions in which iNOS has been implicated. PMID:11463332

  16. Honokiol inhibits lung tumorigenesis through inhibition of mitochondrial function.

    PubMed

    Pan, Jing; Zhang, Qi; Liu, Qian; Komas, Steven M; Kalyanaraman, Balaraman; Lubet, Ronald A; Wang, Yian; You, Ming

    2014-11-01

    Honokiol is an important bioactive compound found in the bark of Magnolia tree. It is a nonadipogenic PPARγ agonist and capable of inhibiting the growth of a variety of tumor types both in vitro and in xenograft models. However, to fully appreciate the potential chemopreventive activity of honokiol, a less artificial model system is required. To that end, this study examined the chemopreventive efficacy of honokiol in an initiation model of lung squamous cell carcinoma (SCC). This model system uses the carcinogen N-nitroso-trischloroethylurea (NTCU), which is applied topically, reliably triggering the development of SCC within 24 to 26 weeks. Administration of honokiol significantly reduced the percentage of bronchial that exhibit abnormal lung SCC histology from 24.4% bronchial in control to 11.0% bronchial in honokiol-treated group (P = 0.01) while protecting normal bronchial histology (present in 20.5% of bronchial in control group and 38.5% of bronchial in honokiol-treated group. P = 0.004). P63 staining at the SCC site confirmed the lung SCCs phenotype. In vitro studies revealed that honokiol inhibited lung SCC cells proliferation, arrested cells at the G1-S cell-cycle checkpoint, while also leading to increased apoptosis. Our study showed that interfering with mitochondrial respiration is a novel mechanism by which honokiol changed redox status in the mitochondria, triggered apoptosis, and finally leads to the inhibition of lung SCC. This novel mechanism of targeting mitochondrial suggests honokiol as a potential lung SCC chemopreventive agent. ©2014 American Association for Cancer Research.

  17. Genetic learning automata for function optimization.

    PubMed

    Howell, M N; Gordon, T J; Brandao, F V

    2002-01-01

    Stochastic learning automata and genetic algorithms (GAs) have previously been shown to have valuable global optimization properties. Learning automata have, however, been criticized for having a relatively slow rate of convergence. In this paper, these two techniques are combined to provide an increase in the rate of convergence for the learning automata and also to improve the chances of escaping local optima. The technique separates the genotype and phenotype properties of the GA and has the advantage that the degree of convergence can be quickly ascertained. It also provides the GA with a stopping rule. If the technique is applied to real-valued function optimization problems, then bounds on the range of the values within which the global optima is expected can be determined throughout the search process. The technique is demonstrated through a number of bit-based and real-valued function optimization examples.

  18. Bromodomains: Structure, function and pharmacology of inhibition.

    PubMed

    Ferri, Elena; Petosa, Carlo; McKenna, Charles E

    2016-04-15

    Bromodomains are epigenetic readers of histone acetylation involved in chromatin remodeling and transcriptional regulation. The human proteome comprises 46 bromodomain-containing proteins with a total of 61 bromodomains, which, despite highly conserved structural features, recognize a wide array of natural peptide ligands. Over the past five years, bromodomains have attracted great interest as promising new epigenetic targets for diverse human diseases, including inflammation, cancer, and cardiovascular disease. The demonstration in 2010 that two small molecule compounds, JQ1 and I-BET762, potently inhibit proteins of the bromodomain and extra-terminal (BET) family with translational potential for cancer and inflammatory disease sparked intense efforts in academia and pharmaceutical industry to develop novel bromodomain antagonists for therapeutic applications. Several BET inhibitors are already in clinical trials for hematological malignancies, solid tumors and cardiovascular disease. Currently, the field faces the challenge of single-target selectivity, especially within the BET family, and of overcoming problems related to the development of drug resistance. At the same time, new trends in bromodomain inhibitor research are emerging, including an increased interest in non-BET bromodomains and a focus on drug synergy with established antitumor agents to improve chemotherapeutic efficacy. This review presents an updated view of the structure and function of bromodomains, traces the development of bromodomain inhibitors and their potential therapeutic applications, and surveys the current challenges and future directions of this vibrant new field in drug discovery.

  19. A novel bee swarm optimization algorithm for numerical function optimization

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Akbari, Reza; Mohammadi, Alireza; Ziarati, Koorush

    2010-10-01

    The optimization algorithms which are inspired from intelligent behavior of honey bees are among the most recently introduced population based techniques. In this paper, a novel algorithm called bee swarm optimization, or BSO, and its two extensions for improving its performance are presented. The BSO is a population based optimization technique which is inspired from foraging behavior of honey bees. The proposed approach provides different patterns which are used by the bees to adjust their flying trajectories. As the first extension, the BSO algorithm introduces different approaches such as repulsion factor and penalizing fitness (RP) to mitigate the stagnation problem. Second, to maintain efficiently the balance between exploration and exploitation, time-varying weights (TVW) are introduced into the BSO algorithm. The proposed algorithm (BSO) and its two extensions (BSO-RP and BSO-RPTVW) are compared with existing algorithms which are based on intelligent behavior of honey bees, on a set of well known numerical test functions. The experimental results show that the BSO algorithms are effective and robust; produce excellent results, and outperform other algorithms investigated in this consideration.

  20. Optimization of constrained density functional theory

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    O'Regan, David D.; Teobaldi, Gilberto

    2016-07-01

    Constrained density functional theory (cDFT) is a versatile electronic structure method that enables ground-state calculations to be performed subject to physical constraints. It thereby broadens their applicability and utility. Automated Lagrange multiplier optimization is necessary for multiple constraints to be applied efficiently in cDFT, for it to be used in tandem with geometry optimization, or with molecular dynamics. In order to facilitate this, we comprehensively develop the connection between cDFT energy derivatives and response functions, providing a rigorous assessment of the uniqueness and character of cDFT stationary points while accounting for electronic interactions and screening. In particular, we provide a nonperturbative proof that stable stationary points of linear density constraints occur only at energy maxima with respect to their Lagrange multipliers. We show that multiple solutions, hysteresis, and energy discontinuities may occur in cDFT. Expressions are derived, in terms of convenient by-products of cDFT optimization, for quantities such as the dielectric function and a condition number quantifying ill definition in multiple constraint cDFT.

  1. Optimizing nondecomposable loss functions in structured prediction.

    PubMed

    Ranjbar, Mani; Lan, Tian; Wang, Yang; Robinovitch, Steven N; Li, Ze-Nian; Mori, Greg

    2013-04-01

    We develop an algorithm for structured prediction with nondecomposable performance measures. The algorithm learns parameters of Markov Random Fields (MRFs) and can be applied to multivariate performance measures. Examples include performance measures such as Fβ score (natural language processing), intersection over union (object category segmentation), Precision/Recall at k (search engines), and ROC area (binary classifiers). We attack this optimization problem by approximating the loss function with a piecewise linear function. The loss augmented inference forms a Quadratic Program (QP), which we solve using LP relaxation. We apply this approach to two tasks: object class-specific segmentation and human action retrieval from videos. We show significant improvement over baseline approaches that either use simple loss functions or simple scoring functions on the PASCAL VOC and H3D Segmentation datasets, and a nursing home action recognition dataset.

  2. Maximizing Academic Success: Introducing the Concept of Optimized Functioning

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Phan, Huy P.

    2015-01-01

    This research article reports on two correlational studies that examined the notion of "optimized functioning." Optimized functioning, introduced in a recent published study, offers an alternative approach into the understanding of optimization. Optimized functioning is proposed to consist of four distinctive components: personal…

  3. Maximizing Academic Success: Introducing the Concept of Optimized Functioning

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Phan, Huy P.

    2015-01-01

    This research article reports on two correlational studies that examined the notion of "optimized functioning." Optimized functioning, introduced in a recent published study, offers an alternative approach into the understanding of optimization. Optimized functioning is proposed to consist of four distinctive components: personal…

  4. Optimization with quadratic support functions in nonconvex smooth optimization

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Khamisov, O. V.

    2016-10-01

    Problem of global minimization of twice continuously differentiable function with Lipschitz second derivatives over a polytope is considered. We suggest a branch and bound method with polytopes as partition elements. Due to the Lipschitz property of the objective function we can construct a quadratic support minorant at each point of the feasible set. Global minimum of of this minorant provides a lower bound of the objective over given partition subset. The main advantage of the suggested method consists in the following. First quadratic minorants usually are nonconvex and we have to solve auxiliary global optimization problem. This problem is reduced to a mixed 0-1 linear programming problem and can be solved by an advanced 0-1 solver. Then we show that the quadratic minorants are getting convex as soon as partition elements are getting smaller in diameter. Hence, at the final steps of the branch and bound method we solve convex auxiliary quadratic problems. Therefore, the method accelerates when we are close to the global minimum of the initial problem.

  5. Inhibiting the Function of an Enzyme

    SciTech Connect

    2015-06-17

    In order to stop bacteria from reproducing and causing a disease like tuberculosis, researchers must first block its enzymes' ability to bind with certain molecules. A research team from Brandeis University worked with the Advanced Protein Characterization Facility at Argonne National Laboratory to define 13 different bacterial structures and uncover the mechanism by which their enzymes form and break bonds with molecules. This animation depicts how an enzyme may be inhibited using this knowledge.

  6. Optimal Reward Functions in Distributed Reinforcement Learning

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Wolpert, David H.; Tumer, Kagan

    2000-01-01

    We consider the design of multi-agent systems so as to optimize an overall world utility function when (1) those systems lack centralized communication and control, and (2) each agents runs a distinct Reinforcement Learning (RL) algorithm. A crucial issue in such design problems is to initialize/update each agent's private utility function, so as to induce best possible world utility. Traditional 'team game' solutions to this problem sidestep this issue and simply assign to each agent the world utility as its private utility function. In previous work we used the 'Collective Intelligence' framework to derive a better choice of private utility functions, one that results in world utility performance up to orders of magnitude superior to that ensuing from use of the team game utility. In this paper we extend these results. We derive the general class of private utility functions that both are easy for the individual agents to learn and that, if learned well, result in high world utility. We demonstrate experimentally that using these new utility functions can result in significantly improved performance over that of our previously proposed utility, over and above that previous utility's superiority to the conventional team game utility.

  7. Sampling design optimization for spatial functions

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Olea, R.A.

    1984-01-01

    A new procedure is presented for minimizing the sampling requirements necessary to estimate a mappable spatial function at a specified level of accuracy. The technique is based on universal kriging, an estimation method within the theory of regionalized variables. Neither actual implementation of the sampling nor universal kriging estimations are necessary to make an optimal design. The average standard error and maximum standard error of estimation over the sampling domain are used as global indices of sampling efficiency. The procedure optimally selects those parameters controlling the magnitude of the indices, including the density and spatial pattern of the sample elements and the number of nearest sample elements used in the estimation. As an illustration, the network of observation wells used to monitor the water table in the Equus Beds of Kansas is analyzed and an improved sampling pattern suggested. This example demonstrates the practical utility of the procedure, which can be applied equally well to other spatial sampling problems, as the procedure is not limited by the nature of the spatial function. ?? 1984 Plenum Publishing Corporation.

  8. Functional inhibition of UQCRB suppresses angiogenesis in zebrafish

    SciTech Connect

    Cho, Yoon Sun; Jung, Hye Jin; Seok, Seung Hyeok; Payumo, Alexander Y.; Chen, James K.; Kwon, Ho Jeong

    2013-04-19

    Highlights: ► This is the first functional characterization of UQCRB in vivo model. ► Angiogenesis is inhibited with UQCRB loss of function in zebrafish. ► UQCRB is introduced as a prognostic marker for mitochondria- and angiogenesis-related diseases. -- Abstract: As a subunit of mitochondrial complex III, UQCRB plays an important role in complex III stability, electron transport, and cellular oxygen sensing. Herein, we report UQCRB function regarding angiogenesis in vivo with the zebrafish (Danio rerio). UQCRB knockdown inhibited angiogenesis in zebrafish leading to the suppression of VEGF expression. Moreover, the UQCRB-targeting small molecule terpestacin also inhibited angiogenesis and VEGF levels in zebrafish, supporting the role of UQCRB in angiogenesis. Collectively, UQCRB loss of function by either genetic and pharmacological means inhibited angiogenesis, indicating that UQCRB plays a key role in this process and can be a prognostic marker of angiogenesis- and mitochondria-related diseases.

  9. Caspase activation inhibits proteasome function during apoptosis.

    PubMed

    Sun, Xiao-Ming; Butterworth, Michael; MacFarlane, Marion; Dubiel, Wolfgang; Ciechanover, Aaron; Cohen, Gerald M

    2004-04-09

    The ubiquitin/proteasome system regulates protein turnover by degrading polyubiquitinated proteins. To date, all studies on the relationship of apoptosis and the proteasome have emphasized the key role of the proteasome in the regulation of apoptosis, by virtue of its ability to degrade regulatory molecules involved in apoptosis. We now demonstrate how induction of apoptosis may regulate the activity of the proteasome. During apoptosis, caspase activation results in the cleavage of three specific subunits of the 19S regulatory complex of the proteasome: S6' (Rpt5) and S5a (Rpn10), whose role is to recognize polyubiquitinated substrates of the proteasome, and S1 (Rpn2), which with S5a and S2 (Rpn1) holds together the lid and base of the 19S regulatory complex. This caspase-mediated cleavage inhibits the proteasomal degradation of ubiquitin-dependent and -independent cellular substrates, including proapoptotic molecules such as Smac, so facilitating the execution of the apoptotic program by providing a feed-forward amplification loop.

  10. Phosphatidylinositol 4-kinases: Function, structure, and inhibition

    SciTech Connect

    Boura, Evzen Nencka, Radim

    2015-10-01

    The phosphatidylinositol 4-kinases (PI4Ks) synthesize phosphatidylinositol 4-phosphate (PI4P), a key member of the phosphoinositide family. PI4P defines the membranes of Golgi and trans-Golgi network (TGN) and regulates trafficking to and from the Golgi. Humans have two type II PI4Ks (α and β) and two type III enzymes (α and β). Recently, the crystal structures were solved for both type II and type III kinase revealing atomic details of their function. Importantly, the type III PI4Ks are hijacked by +RNA viruses to create so-called membranous web, an extensively phosphorylated and modified membrane system dedicated to their replication. Therefore, selective and potent inhibitors of PI4Ks have been developed as potential antiviral agents. Here we focus on the structure and function of PI4Ks and their potential in human medicine.

  11. Acute methamphetamine exposure inhibits cardiac contractile function.

    PubMed

    Turdi, Subat; Schamber, Robbie M; Roe, Nathan D; Chew, Herbert G; Culver, Bruce; Ren, Jun

    2009-09-10

    Methamphetamine, a commonly seen substance of abuse, has been reported to exert detrimental effect on bodily function including the cardiovascular system although its mechanism of action is poorly understood. This study was designed to examine the direct impact of methamphetamine on isolated whole heart and single cardiomyocyte contractile function. Murine hearts and isolated cardiomyocytes from adult FVB mice were exposed to various concentrations of methamphetamine for 30min prior to the assessment of mechanical function using a Langendroff apparatus and an IonOptix Myocam system, respectively. Cardiac contractile properties analyzed included maximal velocity of left ventricular pressure development and decline (+/-dP/dt), peak shortening amplitude (PS), maximal velocity of shortening/relengthening (+/-dLdt), time-to-PS (TPS), time-to-90% relengthening (TR(90)), resting and electrically stimulated increase of intracellular Ca(2+) as well as intracellular Ca(2+) decay. Our results revealed that acute methamphetamine exposure depressed +/-dP/dt, PS and rise of intracellular Ca(2+) without affecting +/-dLdt, TPS, TR(90), resting intracellular Ca(2+) and intracellular Ca(2+) decay. Furthermore, methamphetamine nullified the adrenergic agonist norepinephrine-elicited positive cardiomyocyte contractile response, including elevated PS, +/-dLdt and shortened TR(90) without affecting TPS. Western blot analysis showed unchanged expression of sarco(endo)plasmic reticulum Ca(2+)-ATPase (SERCA2a) and phospholamban, associated with upregulated Na(+)-Ca(2+) exchanger levels following acute methamphetamine exposure. In addition, methamphetamine promoted overt cardiomyocyte protein damage evaluated by carbonyl formation. Taken together, these results demonstrate direct cardiac depressant effect of methamphetamine in myocardium and isolated cardiomyocytes, possibly associated with protein damage and dampened adrenergic response.

  12. Acute Methamphetamine Exposure Inhibits Cardiac Contractile Function

    PubMed Central

    Turdi, Subat; Schamber, Robbie M.; Roe, Nathan D.; Chew, Herbert G.; Culver, Bruce; Ren, Jun

    2009-01-01

    Methamphetamine, a commonly seen substance of abuse, has been reported to exert detrimental effect on bodily function including the cardiovascular system although its mechanism of action is poorly understood. This study was designed to examine the direct impact of methamphetamine on isolated whole heart and single cardiomyocyte contractile function. Murine hearts and isolated cardiomyocytes from adult FVB mice were exposed to various concentrations of methamphetamine for 30 min prior to the assessment of mechanical function using a Langendroff apparatus and an IonOptix Myocam® system, respectively. Cardiac contractile properties analyzed included maximal velocity of left ventricular pressure development and decline (± dP/dt), peak shortening amplitude (PS), maximal velocity of shortening/relengthening (± dLdt), time-to-PS (TPS), time-to-90% relengthening (TR90), resting and electrically-stimulated increase of intracellular Ca2+ as well as intracellular Ca2+ decay. Our results revealed that acute methamphetamine exposure depressed ± dP/dt, PS and rise of intracellular Ca2+ without affecting ± dLdt, TPS, TR90, resting intracellular Ca2+ and intracellular Ca2+ decay. Furthermore, methamphetamine nullified the adrenergic agonist norepinephrine-elicited positive cardiomyocyte contractile response, including elevated PS, ± dLdt and shortened TR90 without affecting TPS. Western blot analysis showed unchanged expression of sarco(endo)plasmic reticulum Ca2+-ATPase (SERCA2a) and phospholamban, associated with upregulated Na+-Ca2+ exchanger levels following acute methamphetamine exposure. In addition, methamphetamine promoted overt cardiomyocyte protein damage evaluated by carbonyl formation. Taken together, these results demonstrate direct cardiac depressant effect of methamphetamine in myocardium and isolated cardiomyocytes, possibly associated with protein damage and dampened adrenergic response. PMID:19481142

  13. Optimal Approximation of Quadratic Interval Functions

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Koshelev, Misha; Taillibert, Patrick

    1997-01-01

    Measurements are never absolutely accurate, as a result, after each measurement, we do not get the exact value of the measured quantity; at best, we get an interval of its possible values, For dynamically changing quantities x, the additional problem is that we cannot measure them continuously; we can only measure them at certain discrete moments of time t(sub 1), t(sub 2), ... If we know that the value x(t(sub j)) at a moment t(sub j) of the last measurement was in the interval [x-(t(sub j)), x + (t(sub j))], and if we know the upper bound D on the rate with which x changes, then, for any given moment of time t, we can conclude that x(t) belongs to the interval [x-(t(sub j)) - D (t - t(sub j)), x + (t(sub j)) + D (t - t(sub j))]. This interval changes linearly with time, an is, therefore, called a linear interval function. When we process these intervals, we get an expression that is quadratic and higher order w.r.t. time t, Such "quadratic" intervals are difficult to process and therefore, it is necessary to approximate them by linear ones. In this paper, we describe an algorithm that gives the optimal approximation of quadratic interval functions by linear ones.

  14. Inhibiting ice recrystallization and optimization of cell viability after cryopreservation.

    PubMed

    Chaytor, Jennifer L; Tokarew, Jacqueline M; Wu, Luke K; Leclère, Mathieu; Tam, Roger Y; Capicciotti, Chantelle J; Guolla, Louise; von Moos, Elisabeth; Findlay, C Scott; Allan, David S; Ben, Robert N

    2012-01-01

    The ice recrystallization inhibition activity of various mono- and disaccharides has been correlated with their ability to cryopreserve human cell lines at various concentrations. Cell viabilities after cryopreservation were compared with control experiments where cells were cryopreserved with dimethylsulfoxide (DMSO). The most potent inhibitors of ice recrystallization were 220 mM solutions of disaccharides; however, the best cell viability was obtained when a 200 mM d-galactose solution was utilized. This solution was minimally cytotoxic at physiological temperature and effectively preserved cells during freeze-thaw. In fact, this carbohydrate was just as effective as a 5% DMSO solution. Further studies indicated that the cryoprotective benefit of d-galactose was a result of its internalization and its ability to mitigate osmotic stress, prevent intracellular ice formation and/or inhibit ice recrystallization. This study supports the hypothesis that the ability of a cryoprotectant to inhibit ice recrystallization is an important property to enhance cell viability post-freeze-thaw. This cryoprotective benefit is observed in three different human cell lines. Furthermore, we demonstrated that the ability of a potential cryoprotectant to inhibit ice recrystallation may be used as a predictor of its ability to preserve cells at subzero temperatures.

  15. Effect of glycolysis inhibition on mitochondrial function in rat brain.

    PubMed

    Cano-Ramírez, D; Torres-Vargas, C E; Guerrero-Castillo, S; Uribe-Carvajal, S; Hernández-Pando, R; Pedraza-Chaverri, J; Orozco-Ibarra, M

    2012-05-01

    Inhibition of the glycolytic enzyme glyceraldehyde-3-phosphate dehydrogenase enhances the neural vulnerability to excitotoxicity both in vivo and in vitro through an unknown mechanism possibly related to mitochondrial failure. However, as the effect of glycolysis inhibition on mitochondrial function in brain has not been studied, the aim of the present work was to evaluate the effect of glycolysis inhibition induced by iodoacetate on mitochondrial function and oxidative stress in brain. Mitochondria were isolated from brain cortex, striatum and cerebellum of rats treated systemically with iodoacetate (25 mg/kg/day for 3 days). Oxygen consumption, ATP synthesis, transmembrane potential, reactive oxygen species production, lipoperoxidation, glutathione levels, and aconitase activity were assessed. Oxygen consumption and aconitase activity decreased in the brain cortex and striatum, showing that glycolysis inhibition did not trigger severe mitochondrial impairment, but a slight mitochondrial malfunction and oxidative stress were present.

  16. Inhibition of neutrophil and monocyte defensive functions by nicotine.

    PubMed

    Pabst, M J; Pabst, K M; Collier, J A; Coleman, T C; Lemons-Prince, M L; Godat, M S; Waring, M B; Babu, J P

    1995-12-01

    To learn more about the effects of smokeless tobacco on the defensive functions of neutrophils, we studied the influence of nicotine on these cells in vitro, looking at their bactericidal activity against oral pathogens, and at their ability to produce microbicidal reactive oxygen species (oxygen radicals). Exposure of human blood neutrophils to nicotine (0.01% to 0.1%) inhibited their ability to kill Actinomyces naeslundii, Actinobacillus actinomycetemcomitans, and Fusobacterium nucleatum. Although these concentrations of nicotine are high, such concentrations are relevant to phagocytes in the gingival sulcus, because smokeless tobacco contains 0.5% to 3.5% nicotine by dry weight. Nicotine had no such inhibitory effect when the killing assay was performed in an anaerobic environment, implying that nicotine preferentially affected oxygen-dependent killing mechanisms. To further investigate the effects of nicotine on production of oxygen radicals, neutrophils were primed with lipopolysaccharide and triggered with f-met-leu-phe or phorbol ester in the presence of nicotine. Nicotine inhibited production of superoxide anion (measured by reduction of cytochrome c) and hydrogen peroxide (measured by oxidation of phenol red). Nicotine inhibition of superoxide production was reversible by washing away the nicotine. By observing that nicotine inhibited the reduction of cytochrome c by reagent potassium superoxide, we determined that nicotine directly absorbed superoxide. In addition, by examining nicotine inhibition of the uptake of oxygen by neutrophils, we determined that nicotine also interfered with the production of oxygen radicals by these cells. Nicotine also inhibited production of superoxide and interleukin-1 beta by monocytes. Nicotine did not affect the viability of neutrophils and monocytes, as determined by their ability to exclude trypan blue dye. Inhibition of the aerobic antimicrobial functions of neutrophils and monocytes by nicotine may alter the microbial

  17. Optimization of irinotecan chronotherapy with P-glycoprotein inhibition

    SciTech Connect

    Filipski, Elisabeth; Berland, Elodie; Ozturk, Narin; Guettier, Catherine; Horst, Gijsbertus T.J. van der; Lévi, Francis; and others

    2014-02-01

    The relevance of P-glycoprotein (P-gp) for irinotecan chronopharmacology was investigated in female B6D2F{sub 1} mice. A three-fold 24 h change in the mRNA expression of Abcb1b was demonstrated in ileum mucosa, with a maximum at Zeitgeber Time (ZT) 15 (p < 0.001). No rhythm was found for abcb1a in ileum mucosa, or for Abcb1a/b in Glasgow osteosarcoma (GOS), a mouse tumor cell line moderately sensitive to irinotecan. Non-tumor-bearing mice received irinotecan (50 mg/kg/day i.v. × 4 days) as a single agent or combined with P-gp inhibitor PSC833 (6.25 mg/kg/day i.p. × 4 days) at ZT3 or ZT15, respectively corresponding to the worst or the best irinotecan tolerability. Endpoints involved survival, body weight change and hematologic toxicity. Antitumor efficacy was studied in GOS-bearing mice receiving irinotecan (25, 30 or 40 mg/kg/day × 4 days) and +/− PSC833 at ZT3 or ZT15, with survival, body weight change, and tumor growth inhibition as endpoints. Non-tumor bearing mice lost an average of 17% or 9% of their body weight according to irinotecan administration at ZT3 or ZT15 respectively (p < 0.001). Dosing at ZT15 rather than ZT3 reduced mean leucopenia (9% vs 53%; p < 0.001). PSC833 aggravated irinotecan lethal toxicity from 4 to ∼ 60%. In tumor-bearing mice, body weight loss was ∼ halved in the mice on irinotecan or irinotecan–PSC833 combination at ZT15 as compared to ZT3 (p < 0.001). PSC833–irinotecan at ZT15 increased tumor inhibition by ∼ 40% as compared to irinotecan only at ZT15. In conclusion, P-gp was an important determinant of the circadian balance between toxicity and efficacy of irinotecan. - Highlights: • Irinotecan chronotolerance and chronoefficacy change as drug was applied with PSC833. • P-glycoprotein is an important player of the toxicity and efficacy of irinotecan. • Timing should be considered if chemotherapy is performed with a MDR1 inhibitor.

  18. Optimization of Milling Parameters Employing Desirability Functions

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ribeiro, J. L. S.; Rubio, J. C. Campos; Abrão, A. M.

    2011-01-01

    The principal aim of this paper is to investigate the influence of tool material (one cermet and two coated carbide grades), cutting speed and feed rate on the machinability of hardened AISI H13 hot work steel, in order to identify the cutting conditions which lead to optimal performance. A multiple response optimization procedure based on tool life, surface roughness, milling forces and the machining time (required to produce a sample cavity) was employed. The results indicated that the TiCN-TiN coated carbide and cermet presented similar results concerning the global optimum values for cutting speed and feed rate per tooth, outperforming the TiN-TiCN-Al2O3 coated carbide tool.

  19. Optimal control design of pulse shapes as analytic functions.

    PubMed

    Skinner, Thomas E; Gershenzon, Naum I

    2010-06-01

    Representing NMR pulse shapes by analytic functions is widely employed in procedures for optimizing performance. Insights concerning pulse dynamics can be applied to the choice of appropriate functions that target specific performance criteria, focusing the solution search and reducing the space of possible pulse shapes that must be considered to a manageable level. Optimal control theory can accommodate significantly larger parameter spaces and has been able to tackle problems of much larger scope than more traditional optimization methods. However, its numerically generated pulses, as currently constructed, do not readily incorporate the capabilities of particular functional forms, and the pulses are not guaranteed to vary smoothly in time, which can be a problem for faithful implementation on older hardware. An optimal control methodology is derived for generating pulse shapes as simple parameterized functions. It combines the benefits of analytic and numerical protocols in a single powerful algorithm that both complements and enhances existing optimization strategies.

  20. A functional approach to geometry optimization of complex systems

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Maslen, P. E.

    A quadratically convergent procedure is presented for the geometry optimization of complex systems, such as biomolecules and molecular complexes. The costly evaluation of the exact Hessian is avoided by expanding the density functional to second order in both nuclear and electronic variables, and then searching for the minimum of the quadratic functional. The dependence of the functional on the choice of nuclear coordinate system is described, and illustrative geometry optimizations using Cartesian and internal coordinates are presented for Taxol™.

  1. Spillover-mediated feedforward-inhibition functionally segregates interneuron activity

    PubMed Central

    Coddington, Luke T.; Rudolph, Stephanie; Lune, Patrick Vande; Overstreet-Wadiche, Linda; Wadiche, Jacques I.

    2013-01-01

    Summary Neurotransmitter spillover represents a form of neural transmission not restricted to morphologically defined synaptic connections. Communication between climbing fibers (CFs) and molecular layer interneurons (MLIs) in the cerebellum is mediated exclusively by glutamate spillover. Here, we show how CF stimulation functionally segregates MLIs based on their location relative to glutamate release. Excitation of MLIs that reside within the domain of spillover diffusion coordinates inhibition of MLIs outside the diffusion limit. CF excitation of MLIs is dependent on extrasynaptic NMDA receptors that enhance the spatial and temporal spread of CF signaling. Activity mediated by functionally segregated MLIs converges onto neighboring Purkinje cells (PCs) to generate a long-lasting biphasic change in inhibition. These data demonstrate how glutamate release from single CFs modulates excitability of neighboring PCs, thus expanding the influence of CFs on cerebellar cortical activity in a manner not predicted by anatomical connectivity. PMID:23707614

  2. Cognitive functioning and the inhibition of alcohol-induced aggression.

    PubMed

    Hoaken, P N; Assaad, J M; Pihl, R O

    1998-09-01

    A highly replicable research finding is that alcohol intoxication tends to induce aggressive responding. Recent research investigating the role of cognitive function in this relationship has shown that individuals who perform poorly on certain cognitive tasks have difficulty responding to contingencies to inhibit aggression, while high performers do not. High performers, however, do show increased aggression while intoxicated. This study investigated whether subjects with above average cognitive functioning would, when intoxicated, inhibit aggression in order to attain monetary reward. Men (N = 43), aged 18-30, selected on the basis of high performance on a neuropsychological test putatively assessing function of dorsolateral prefrontal cortex, the spatial conditional associative learning task, participated in a modified version of the Taylor Aggression Task. Half the subjects were acutely alcohol intoxicated, the other half were sober. Furthermore, half the subjects in each of these groups received contingent monetary reward for choosing lower shocks. Aggression was defined as shock intensity delivered to a sham opponent. Contrary to the hypothesis, intoxicated subjects, even though significantly impaired cognitively relative to their nonintoxicated peers (F = 4.29, 1/41 df, p < .05), appeared to have no difficulty inhibiting their aggression in order to gain monetary reward. That is, there was no difference between intoxicated and nonintoxicated subjects on the dependent variable, shock intensity, when contingent money was available (F = .01, 1/20 df, p = .935). This finding provides further evidence that alcohol-induced aggression is not a uniform phenomenon, and it suggests a neuropsychological mechanism that may mediate the relationship. It may be that individuals with above average cognitive abilities retain sufficient residual functioning to inhibit aggressive responding, even when acutely alcohol intoxicated.

  3. Optimization of Cubic Polynomial Functions without Calculus

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Taylor, Ronald D., Jr.; Hansen, Ryan

    2008-01-01

    In algebra and precalculus courses, students are often asked to find extreme values of polynomial functions in the context of solving an applied problem; but without the notion of derivative, something is lost. Either the functions are reduced to quadratics, since students know the formula for the vertex of a parabola, or solutions are…

  4. Optimization of an exchange-correlation density functional for water

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Fritz, Michelle; Fernández-Serra, Marivi; Soler, José M.

    2016-06-01

    We describe a method, that we call data projection onto parameter space (DPPS), to optimize an energy functional of the electron density, so that it reproduces a dataset of experimental magnitudes. Our scheme, based on Bayes theorem, constrains the optimized functional not to depart unphysically from existing ab initio functionals. The resulting functional maximizes the probability of being the "correct" parameterization of a given functional form, in the sense of Bayes theory. The application of DPPS to water sheds new light on why density functional theory has performed rather poorly for liquid water, on what improvements are needed, and on the intrinsic limitations of the generalized gradient approximation to electron exchange and correlation. Finally, we present tests of our water-optimized functional, that we call vdW-DF-w, showing that it performs very well for a variety of condensed water systems.

  5. Ketamine inhibits human sperm function by Ca(2+)-related mechanism.

    PubMed

    He, Yuanqiao; Zou, Qianxing; Li, Bingda; Chen, Houyang; Du, Xiaohong; Weng, Shiqi; Luo, Tao; Zeng, Xuhui

    2016-09-09

    Ketamine, a dissociative anesthetic, which was widely used in human and animal medicine, has become a popular recreational drug, as it can induce hallucinatory effects. Ketamine abuse can cause serious damage to many aspects of the organism, mainly reflected in the nervous system and urinary system. It has also been reported that ketamine can impair the male genital system. However, the detailed effect of ketamine on human spermatozoa remains unclear. Thus, we investigated the in vitro effects of ketamine on human sperm functions, to elucidate the underlying mechanism. Human sperm were treated in vitro with different concentrations of ketamine (0, 0.125, 0.25, 0.5, 1 g/L). The results showed that 0.25-1 g/L ketamine inhibited sperm total motility, progressive motility and linear velocity, in a dose-dependent manner. In addition, the sperm's ability to penetrate viscous medium and the progesterone-induced acrosome reaction were significantly inhibited by ketamine. Ketamine did not affect sperm viability, capacitation and spontaneous acrosome reaction. The intracellular calcium concentration ([Ca(2+)]i), which is a central factor in the regulation of human sperm function, was decreased by ketamine (0.125-1 g/L) in a dose-dependent manner. Furthermore, the currents of the sperm-specific Ca(2+) channel, CatSper, which modulates Ca(2+) influx in sperm, were inhibited by ketamine (0.125-1 g/L) in a dose-dependent manner. Our findings suggest that ketamine induces its toxic effects on human sperm functions by reducing sperm [Ca(2+)]i through inhibition of CatSper channel. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  6. Optimization of removal function in computer controlled optical surfacing

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chen, Xi; Guo, Peiji; Ren, Jianfeng

    2010-10-01

    The technical principle of computer controlled optical surfacing (CCOS) and the common method of optimizing removal function that is used in CCOS are introduced in this paper. A new optimizing method time-sharing synthesis of removal function is proposed to solve problems of the removal function being far away from Gaussian type and slow approaching of the removal function error that encountered in the mode of planet motion or translation-rotation. Detailed time-sharing synthesis of using six removal functions is discussed. For a given region on the workpiece, six positions are selected as the centers of the removal function; polishing tool controlled by the executive system of CCOS revolves around each centre to complete a cycle in proper order. The overall removal function obtained by the time-sharing process is the ratio of total material removal in six cycles to time duration of the six cycles, which depends on the arrangement and distribution of the six removal functions. Simulations on the synthesized overall removal functions under two different modes of motion, i.e., planet motion and translation-rotation are performed from which the optimized combination of tool parameters and distribution of time-sharing synthesis removal functions are obtained. The evaluation function when optimizing is determined by an approaching factor which is defined as the ratio of the material removal within the area of half of the polishing tool coverage from the polishing center to the total material removal within the full polishing tool coverage area. After optimization, it is found that the optimized removal function obtained by time-sharing synthesis is closer to the ideal Gaussian type removal function than those by the traditional methods. The time-sharing synthesis method of the removal function provides an efficient way to increase the convergence speed of the surface error in CCOS for the fabrication of aspheric optical surfaces, and to reduce the intermediate- and high

  7. GGCX and VKORC1 inhibit osteocalcin endocrine functions

    PubMed Central

    Lacombe, Julie; Germain, Amélie; Oury, Franck

    2015-01-01

    Osteocalcin (OCN) is an osteoblast-derived hormone favoring glucose homeostasis, energy expenditure, male fertility, brain development, and cognition. Before being secreted by osteoblasts in the bone extracellular matrix, OCN is γ-carboxylated by the γ-carboxylase (GGCX) on three glutamic acid residues, a cellular process requiring reduction of vitamin K (VK) by a second enzyme, a reductase called VKORC1. Although circumstantial evidence suggests that γ-carboxylation may inhibit OCN endocrine functions, genetic evidence that it is the case is still lacking. Here we show using cell-specific gene inactivation models that γ-carboxylation of OCN by GGCX inhibits its endocrine function. We further show that VKORC1 is required for OCN γ-carboxylation in osteoblasts, whereas its paralogue, VKORC1L1, is dispensable for this function and cannot compensate for the absence of VKORC1 in osteoblasts. This study genetically and biochemically delineates the functions of the enzymes required for OCN modification and demonstrates that it is the uncarboxylated form of OCN that acts as a hormone. PMID:25753038

  8. The inhibition of human platelet function by ganodermic acids.

    PubMed Central

    Wang, C N; Chen, J C; Shiao, M S; Wang, C T

    1991-01-01

    Human gel-filtered platelets aggregate at greater than 20 microM-ganodermic acid S [lanosta-7,9(11),24-triene-3 beta, 15 alpha-diacetoxy-26-oic acid] [Wang, Chen, Shiao & Wang (1989) Biochim. Biophys. Acta 986, 151-160]. This study showed that platelets at less than 20 microM-ganodermic acid S displayed both concentration- and time-dependent inhibition of function, in which the agent potency in response to inducers was ADP-fibrinogen greater than collagen greater than thrombin. The agent caused a biphasic time-dependent effect on platelet phosphoinositide metabolism. The first phase involved the decrease in the pool size of phosphoinositide by 10-20%. The second phase, in which both the resynthesis of phosphatidylinositol 4,5-bisphosphate (PIP2) and the decrease of [32P]phosphatidic acid occurred, took place after 30 min. Scanning electron microscopy also revealed a time-dependent morphological change in platelets in the presence of the agent. The cells initially became spiculate discs, then swelled to a 'potato-like' morphology at 60 min. Further studies on the time-dependent inhibition of thrombin response revealed that: (1) the percentage inhibition of cell aggregation was comparable with that occurring with an increase of cytosolic free Ca2+ concentration [( Ca2+]i) or the phosphorylation of marker proteins; (2) [32P]Pi-labelled platelets showed the time-dependent inhibition of thrombin-stimulated PIP2 resynthesis as indicated by first-2-min time-course studies of phosphoinositide interconversion; (3) scanning electron microscopy revealed that the aged platelet population showed an increase in the percentage of non-responding cells on prolonged incubation. The results, taken together, enabled one to discuss a possible mechanism for the time-dependent inhibition by ganodermic acid S of platelet response to thrombin. Images Fig. 5. Fig. 6. PMID:1649599

  9. Optical transfer function optimization based on linear expansions

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Schwiegerling, Jim

    2015-09-01

    The Optical Transfer Function (OTF) and its modulus the Modulation Transfer Function (MTF) are metrics of optical system performance. However in system optimization, calculation times for the OTF are often substantially longer than more traditional optimization targets such as wavefront error or transverse ray error. The OTF is typically calculated as either the autocorrelation of the complex pupil function or as the Fourier transform of the Point Spread Function. We recently demonstrated that the on-axis OTF can be represented as a linear combination of analytical functions where the weighting terms are directly related to the wavefront error coefficients and apodization of the complex pupil function. Here, we extend this technique to the off-axis case. The expansion technique offers a potential for accelerating OTF optimization in lens design, as well as insight into the interaction of aberrations with components of the OTF.

  10. Optimizing an emperical scoring function for transmembrane protein structure determination.

    SciTech Connect

    Young, Malin M.; Sale, Kenneth L.; Gray, Genetha Anne; Kolda, Tamara Gibson

    2003-10-01

    We examine the problem of transmembrane protein structure determination. Like many other questions that arise in biological research, this problem cannot be addressed by traditional laboratory experimentation alone. An approach that integrates experiment and computation is required. We investigate a procedure which states the transmembrane protein structure determination problem as a bound constrained optimization problem using a special empirical scoring function, called Bundler, as the objective function. In this paper, we describe the optimization problem and some of its mathematical properties. We compare and contrast results obtained using two different derivative free optimization algorithms.

  11. Direct renin inhibition improves parasympathetic function in diabetes

    PubMed Central

    Maser, Raelene E.; Lenhard, M. James; Kolm, Paul; Edwards, David G.

    2012-01-01

    Aim The renin-angiotensin-aldosterone system (RAAS) and autonomic nervous system regulate the cardiovascular system. Blockade of the RAAS may slow progression of end-organ damage. Direct renin inhibition offers a means for blocking the RAAS. The objective of this study was to examine the effect of direct renin inhibition on cardiovascular autonomic function. Methods In this double-blind, placebo-controlled trial, 60 individuals with diabetes were randomly assigned to 300 mg of aliskiren or placebo once daily for 6 weeks. The primary end point was a change in tests of cardiovascular autonomic function. Autonomic function was assessed by power spectral analysis and RR-variation during deep breathing (i.e., mean circular resultant (MCR), expiration/inspiration (E/I) ratio). The MCR and E/I ratio assess parasympathetic function. Secondary measures included change in biochemical parameters (e.g., plasma renin activity, leptin, interleukin-6). Change in cardiovascular autonomic function and blood analytes were analyzed by a mixed effects model for repeated measures. Results Baseline characteristics were similar between treatment groups. In response to aliskiren compared with placebo, blood pressure was reduced as well as plasma renin activity (from 2.4±3.8 (mean±SD) to 0.5±0.4 μg/l/h, p<0.001). There was a significant interaction (aliskiren x visit) for MCR (p=0.003) and E/I ratio (p=0.003) indicating improvement in MCR and E/I ratio for those on aliskiren. MCR means, baseline vs. follow-up, were 41.8±19.7 vs. 50.8±26.1 (aliskiren) and 38.2±23.6 vs. 37.5±24.1 (placebo). Conclusions Parasympathetic function (i.e., MCR and E/I ratio) was enhanced by down-regulation of the RAAS. PMID:22834767

  12. Computational tool for optimizing the essential oils utilization in inhibiting the bacterial growth

    PubMed Central

    El-Attar, Noha E; Awad, Wael A

    2017-01-01

    Day after day, the importance of relying on nature in many fields such as food, medical, pharmaceutical industries, and others is increasing. Essential oils (EOs) are considered as one of the most significant natural products for use as antimicrobials, antioxidants, antitumorals, and anti-inflammatories. Optimizing the usage of EOs is a big challenge faced by the scientific researchers because of the complexity of chemical composition of every EO, in addition to the difficulties to determine the best in inhibiting the bacterial activity. The goal of this article is to present a new computational tool based on two methodologies: reduction by using rough sets and optimization with particle swarm optimization. The developed tool dubbed as Essential Oil Reduction and Optimization Tool is applied on 24 types of EOs that have been tested toward 17 different species of bacteria. PMID:28919787

  13. Computational tool for optimizing the essential oils utilization in inhibiting the bacterial growth.

    PubMed

    El-Attar, Noha E; Awad, Wael A

    2017-01-01

    Day after day, the importance of relying on nature in many fields such as food, medical, pharmaceutical industries, and others is increasing. Essential oils (EOs) are considered as one of the most significant natural products for use as antimicrobials, antioxidants, antitumorals, and anti-inflammatories. Optimizing the usage of EOs is a big challenge faced by the scientific researchers because of the complexity of chemical composition of every EO, in addition to the difficulties to determine the best in inhibiting the bacterial activity. The goal of this article is to present a new computational tool based on two methodologies: reduction by using rough sets and optimization with particle swarm optimization. The developed tool dubbed as Essential Oil Reduction and Optimization Tool is applied on 24 types of EOs that have been tested toward 17 different species of bacteria.

  14. Arginase inhibition restores endothelial function in diet-induced obesity.

    PubMed

    Chung, Ji Hyung; Moon, Jiyoung; Lee, Youn Sue; Chung, Hye-Kyung; Lee, Seung-Min; Shin, Min-Jeong

    2014-08-22

    Arginase may play a major role in the regulation of vascular function in various cardiovascular disorders by impairing nitric oxide (NO) production. In the current study, we investigated whether supplementation of the arginase inhibitor N(ω)-hydroxy-nor-l-arginine (nor-NOHA) could restore endothelial function in an animal model of diet-induced obesity. Arginase 1 expression was significantly lower in the aorta of C57BL/6J mice fed a high-fat diet (HFD) supplemented with nor-NOHA (40mgkg(-1)/day) than in mice fed HFD without nor-NOHA. Arginase inhibition led to considerable increases in eNOS expression and NO levels and significant decreases in the levels of circulating ICAM-1. These findings were further confirmed by the results of siRNA-mediated knockdown of Arg in human umbilical vein endothelial cells. In conclusion, arginase inhibition can help restore dysregulated endothelial function by increasing the eNOS-dependent NO production in the endothelium, indicating that arginase could be a therapeutic target for correcting obesity-induced vascular endothelial dysfunction.

  15. Optimization of quantum Monte Carlo wave functions by energy minimization.

    PubMed

    Toulouse, Julien; Umrigar, C J

    2007-02-28

    We study three wave function optimization methods based on energy minimization in a variational Monte Carlo framework: the Newton, linear, and perturbative methods. In the Newton method, the parameter variations are calculated from the energy gradient and Hessian, using a reduced variance statistical estimator for the latter. In the linear method, the parameter variations are found by diagonalizing a nonsymmetric estimator of the Hamiltonian matrix in the space spanned by the wave function and its derivatives with respect to the parameters, making use of a strong zero-variance principle. In the less computationally expensive perturbative method, the parameter variations are calculated by approximately solving the generalized eigenvalue equation of the linear method by a nonorthogonal perturbation theory. These general methods are illustrated here by the optimization of wave functions consisting of a Jastrow factor multiplied by an expansion in configuration state functions (CSFs) for the C2 molecule, including both valence and core electrons in the calculation. The Newton and linear methods are very efficient for the optimization of the Jastrow, CSF, and orbital parameters. The perturbative method is a good alternative for the optimization of just the CSF and orbital parameters. Although the optimization is performed at the variational Monte Carlo level, we observe for the C2 molecule studied here, and for other systems we have studied, that as more parameters in the trial wave functions are optimized, the diffusion Monte Carlo total energy improves monotonically, implying that the nodal hypersurface also improves monotonically.

  16. Optimization of quantum Monte Carlo wave functions by energy minimization

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Toulouse, Julien; Umrigar, C. J.

    2007-02-01

    We study three wave function optimization methods based on energy minimization in a variational Monte Carlo framework: the Newton, linear, and perturbative methods. In the Newton method, the parameter variations are calculated from the energy gradient and Hessian, using a reduced variance statistical estimator for the latter. In the linear method, the parameter variations are found by diagonalizing a nonsymmetric estimator of the Hamiltonian matrix in the space spanned by the wave function and its derivatives with respect to the parameters, making use of a strong zero-variance principle. In the less computationally expensive perturbative method, the parameter variations are calculated by approximately solving the generalized eigenvalue equation of the linear method by a nonorthogonal perturbation theory. These general methods are illustrated here by the optimization of wave functions consisting of a Jastrow factor multiplied by an expansion in configuration state functions (CSFs) for the C2 molecule, including both valence and core electrons in the calculation. The Newton and linear methods are very efficient for the optimization of the Jastrow, CSF, and orbital parameters. The perturbative method is a good alternative for the optimization of just the CSF and orbital parameters. Although the optimization is performed at the variational Monte Carlo level, we observe for the C2 molecule studied here, and for other systems we have studied, that as more parameters in the trial wave functions are optimized, the diffusion Monte Carlo total energy improves monotonically, implying that the nodal hypersurface also improves monotonically.

  17. Zap70 Inhibits Syk-mediated Osteoclast Function

    PubMed Central

    Zou, Wei; Croke, Monica; Fukunaga, Tomohiro; Broekelmann, Thomas J.; Mecham, Robert P.; Teitelbaum, Steven L.

    2014-01-01

    The αvβ3 integrin stimulates the resorptive capacity of the differentiated osteoclast (OC) by organizing its cytoskeleton via the tyrosine kinase, Syk. Thus, Syk-deficient OCs fail to spread or form actin rings, in vitro and in vivo. The Syk family of tyrosine kinases consists of Syk itself and Zap70 which are expressed by different cell types. Because of their structural similarity, and its compensatory properties in other cells, we asked if Zap70 can substitute for absence of Syk in OCs. While expression of Syk, as expected, normalizes the cytoskeletal abnormalities of Syk-/- OCs, Zap70 fails do so. In keeping with this observation, Syk, but not Zap70, rescues αvβ3 integrin-induced SLP76 phosphorylation in Syk-/- OCs. Furthermore the kinase sequence of Syk partially rescues the Syk-/- phenotype but full normalization also requires its SH2 domains. Surprisingly, expression of Zap70 inhibits WT OC spreading, actin ring formation and bone resorptive activity, but not differentiation. In keeping with arrested cytoskeletal organization, Zap70 blocks integrin-activated endogenous Syk and Vav3, SLP76 phosphorylation. Such inhibition requires Zap70 kinase activity, as it is abolished by mutation of the Zap70 kinase domain. Thus, while the kinase domain of Syk is uniquely required for OC function, that of Zap70 inhibits it. PMID:23494777

  18. Antipsychotic Drugs Inhibit the Function of Breast Cancer Resistance Protein

    PubMed Central

    Wang, Jun-Sheng; Zhu, Hao-Jie; Markowitz, John S.; Donovan, Jennifer L.; Yuan, Hong-Jie; DeVane, C. Lindsay

    2009-01-01

    The ABCG2 transporter breast cancer resistance protein (BCRP) has been identified in several physiological sites. It has been suggested to play an important role in disposition of many drugs and environmental toxins. We investigated the effects of several antipsychotic drugs, including risperidone, 9-hydroxy-risperidone (paliperidone), olanzapine, quetiapine, clozapine, haloperidol and chlorpromazine, and a positive control inhibitor Ko143 on functions of BCRP in MCF7 and BCRP over-expressing MCF7/MX100 cell lines using a BCRP prototypical substrate mitoxantrone. Our findings indicated that the tested antipsychotics rank order of potency of inhibition of BCRP according to concentrations required to reach 50% of maximum inhibition (IC50) was as follows: Ko143 (0.07 μM) > risperidone (38.1 μM) > clozapine (42.0 μM) > paliperidone (51 μM) > chlorpromazine (52.2 μM) > quetiapine (66.1 μM) > olanzapine = haloperidol (>100.0 μM). We further tested the effects of various concentrations of risperidone on the BCRP-mediated transport of oestrone-3-sulfate in a colon carcinoma cell line, Caco-2, a widely used model to study drug absorption. Our findings show that risperidone at concentrations ranging from 1 to 100 μM significantly inhibited intracellular accumulation of oestrone-3-sulfate in Caco-2 cell monolayers. The present results suggest that a potential source of pharmacokinetic interactions exists between BCRP substrates and several antipsychotics. PMID:18834354

  19. Improved Particle Swarm Optimization for Global Optimization of Unimodal and Multimodal Functions

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Basu, Mousumi

    2016-12-01

    Particle swarm optimization (PSO) performs well for small dimensional and less complicated problems but fails to locate global minima for complex multi-minima functions. This paper proposes an improved particle swarm optimization (IPSO) which introduces Gaussian random variables in velocity term. This improves search efficiency and guarantees a high probability of obtaining the global optimum without significantly impairing the speed of convergence and the simplicity of the structure of particle swarm optimization. The algorithm is experimentally validated on 17 benchmark functions and the results demonstrate good performance of the IPSO in solving unimodal and multimodal problems. Its high performance is verified by comparing with two popular PSO variants.

  20. Bafetinib inhibits functional responses of human eosinophils in vitro.

    PubMed

    Milara, Javier; Martinez-Losa, Maleles; Sanz, Celia; Almudéver, Patricia; Peiró, Teresa; Serrano, Adela; Morcillo, Esteban Jesus; Zaragozá, Cristóbal; Cortijo, Julio

    2013-09-05

    Eosinophils play a prominent role in the process of allergic inflammation. Non-receptor associated Lyn tyrosine kinases generate key initial signals in eosinophils. Bafetinib, a specific Abl/Lyn tyrosine kinase inhibitor has shown a potent antiproliferative activity in leukemic cells, but its effects on eosinophils have not been reported. Therefore, we studied the effects of bafetinib on functional and mechanistic responses of isolated human eosinophils. Bafetinib was more potent than non-specific tyrosin kinase comparators genistein and tyrphostin inhibiting superoxide anion triggered by N-formyl-Met-Leu-Phe (fMLF; 100 nM) (-log IC50=7.25 ± 0.04 M; 6.1 ± 0.04 M; and 6.55 ± 0.03 M, respectively). Bafetinib, genistein and tyrphostin did not modify the [Ca(2+)]i responses to fMLF. Bafetinib inhibited the release of EPO induced by fMLF with higher potency than genistein and tyrphostin (-log IC50=7.24 ± 0.09 M; 5.36 ± 0.28 M; and 5.37 ± 0.19 M, respectively), and nearly suppressed LTC4, ECP and chemotaxis. Bafetinib, genistein and tyrphostin did not change constitutive apoptosis. However bafetinib inhibited the ability of granulocyte-monocyte colony-stimulating factor to prevent apoptosis. The activation of Lyn tyrosine kinase, p-ERK1/2 and p-38 induced by fMLF was suppressed by bafetinib and attenuated by genistein and tyrphostin. In conclusion, bafetinib inhibits oxidative burst and generation of inflammatory mediators, and reverses the eosinophil survival. Therefore, future anti-allergic therapies based on bafetinib, could help to suppress excessive inflammatory response of eosinophils at inflammatory sites.

  1. The association between resting functional connectivity and dispositional optimism.

    PubMed

    Ran, Qian; Yang, Junyi; Yang, Wenjing; Wei, Dongtao; Qiu, Jiang; Zhang, Dong

    2017-01-01

    Dispositional optimism is an individual characteristic that plays an important role in human experience. Optimists are people who tend to hold positive expectations for their future. Previous studies have focused on the neural basis of optimism, such as task response neural activity and brain structure volume. However, the functional connectivity between brain regions of the dispositional optimists are poorly understood. Previous study suggested that the ventromedial prefrontal cortex (vmPFC) are associated with individual differences in dispositional optimism, but it is unclear whether there are other brain regions that combine with the vmPFC to contribute to dispositional optimism. Thus, the present study used the resting-state functional connectivity (RSFC) approach and set the vmPFC as the seed region to examine if differences in functional brain connectivity between the vmPFC and other brain regions would be associated with individual differences in dispositional optimism. The results found that dispositional optimism was significantly positively correlated with the strength of the RSFC between vmPFC and middle temporal gyrus (mTG) and negativly correlated with RSFC between vmPFC and inferior frontal gyrus (IFG). These findings may be suggested that mTG and IFG which associated with emotion processes and emotion regulation also play an important role in the dispositional optimism.

  2. The numerically optimized regulator and the functional renormalization group

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Márián, I. G.; Jentschura, U. D.; Nándori, I.

    2014-05-01

    We aim to optimize the functional form of the compactly supported smooth (CSS) regulator within the functional renormalization group (RG), in the framework of bosonized two-dimensional quantum electrodynamics (QED2) and of the three-dimensional O(N = 1) scalar field theory in the local potential approximation (LPA). The principle of minimal sensitivity (PMS) is used for the optimization of the CSS regulator, recovering all the major types of regulators in appropriate limits. Within the investigated class of functional forms, a thorough investigation of the CSS regulator, optimized with two different normalizations within the PMS method, confirms that the functional form of a regulator first proposed by Litim is optimal within the LPA. However, Litim’s exact form leads to a kink in the regulator function. A form of the CSS regulator, numerically close to Litim’s limit while maintaining infinite differentiability, remains compatible with the gradient expansion to all orders. A smooth analytic behavior of the regulator is ensured by a small, but finite value of the exponential fall-off parameter in the CSS regulator. Consequently, a compactly supported regulator, in a parameter regime close to Litim’s optimized form, but regularized with an exponential factor, appears to have favorable properties and could be used to address the scheme dependence of the functional RG, at least within the approximations employed in the studies reported here.

  3. Pyrazine derivatives in cigarette smoke inhibit hamster oviductal functioning

    PubMed Central

    Riveles, Karen; Roza, Ryan; Arey, Janet; Talbot, Prue

    2004-01-01

    Background Our past studies have shown that cigarette smoke inhibits oviductal functioning in vivo and in vitro. The goals in this study were to identify pyrazine derivatives in cigarette smoke solutions that inhibit ciliary beat frequency, oocyte pickup rate, and infundibular smooth muscle contraction in the hamster oviduct and to determine their lowest observable adverse effect levels (LOAELs) using in vitro bioassays. Methods MS smoke solutions were fractionated using solid phase extraction cartridges and the fractions were both tested on the hamster oviduct in vitro and analyzed by gas chromatography-mass spectrometry to identify individual pyrazine derivatives. Commercial pyrazine standards were purchased, assayed for purity, and tested in dose-response studies on hamster oviducts. The LOAEL and efficacy were determined for each compound in the in vitro bioassays. Statistical significance was determined using the Student's t-Test where p < 0.05. Results The LOAELs for the most inhibitory pyrazine derivatives in the ciliary beat frequency, oocyte pickup rate, and infundibular smooth muscle contraction assays were as follows: for pyrazine (1 picomolar, 10 picomolar, and 1 nanomolar); for 2-methylpyrazine (1 picomolar, 10 picomolar, and 10 picomolar); and for 2-ethylpyrazine (1 picomolar, 10 picomolar, and 1 picomolar). Six of the seven pyrazine derivatives tested (pyrazine, 2-methylpyrazine, 2-ethylpyrazine, 2-methoxy-3-methylpyrazine, 2,5-dimethylpyrazine, and 2,3,5-trimethylpyrazine) were inhibitory in picomolar or nanomolar doses in all three bioassays, while the seventh derivative, 2,6-dimethylpyrazine, had LOAELs in the nanomolar to micromolar range. Conclusion This work shows that very low doses of pyrazines significantly inhibit proper oviductal functioning, raising questions regarding the safety of these compounds in cigarettes and other consumer products. PMID:15140253

  4. Gastric electrical stimulation optimized to inhibit gastric motility reduces food intake in dogs.

    PubMed

    Song, Geng-Qing; Zhu, Hongbing; Lei, Yong; Yuan, Charlene; Starkebaum, Warren; Yin, Jieyun; Chen, Jiande D Z

    2015-06-01

    The aim of this study was to test the hypothesis that that a method of gastric electrical stimulation (GES) optimized to inhibit gastric motility was effective in reducing food intake in dogs. Female dogs with a gastric cannula and gastric serosal electrodes were studied in three experiments: (1) to determine the best parameters and locations of GES in inhibiting gastric tone, slow waves, and contractions in dogs;( 2) to investigate the reproducibility of the inhibitory effects of GES; and (3) to study the effect of the GES method on food intake in dogs. (1) For GES to exert significant effects on gastric motility, a pulse width of ≥2 ms was required, and with other appropriate inhibitory parameters, GES was able to increase gastric volume by 190.4 %, reduce antral contractions by 39.7 %, and decrease the percentage of normal slow waves by 47.6 %. In addition, the inhibitory effect of GES was more potent with the stimulation electrodes placed along the lesser or greater curvature than placed in the middle, and more potent with the electrodes placed in the distal stomach than in the proximal stomach; (2) the inhibitory effects of GES on gastric motility were reproducible; (3) the GES method optimized to inhibit gastric motility produced a 20 % reduction in food intakes in non-obese dogs. GES with appropriate parameters inhibits gastric motility, and the effects are reproducible. The GES method optimized to inhibit gastric motility reduces food intake in healthy dogs and may have a therapeutic potential for treating obesity.

  5. Functional connectivity correlates of response inhibition impairment in anorexia nervosa.

    PubMed

    Collantoni, Enrico; Michelon, Silvia; Tenconi, Elena; Degortes, Daniela; Titton, Francesca; Manara, Renzo; Clementi, Maurizio; Pinato, Claudia; Forzan, Monica; Cassina, Matteo; Santonastaso, Paolo; Favaro, Angela

    2016-01-30

    Anorexia nervosa (AN) is a disorder characterized by high levels of cognitive control and behavioral perseveration. The present study aims at exploring inhibitory control abilities and their functional connectivity correlates in patients with AN. Inhibitory control - an executive function that allows the realization of adaptive behavior according to environmental contingencies - has been assessed by means of the Stop-Signal paradigm. The study involved 155 patients with lifetime AN and 102 healthy women. A subsample underwent resting-state functional magnetic resonance imaging and was genotyped for COMT and 5-HTTLPR polymorphisms. AN patients showed an impaired response inhibition and a disruption of the functional connectivity of the ventral attention circuit, a neural network implicated in behavioral response when a stimulus occurs unexpected. The 5-HTTLPR genotype appears to significantly interact with the functional connectivity of ventral attention network in explaining task performance in both patients and controls, suggesting a role of the serotoninergic system in mechanisms of response selection. The disruption of the ventral attention network in patients with AN suggests lower efficiency of bottom-up signal filtering, which might be involved in difficulties to adapt behavioral responses to environmental needs. Our findings deserve further research to confirm their scientific and therapeutic implications. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Ireland Ltd. All rights reserved.

  6. Exploring the concept of optimal functionality in old age

    PubMed Central

    Algilani, Samal; Östlund-Lagerström, Lina; Kihlgren, Annica; Blomberg, Karin; Brummer, Robert J; Schoultz, Ida

    2014-01-01

    Background Aging is characterized by loss of function and represents a perspective that puts the focus on the negative aspects of aging. Thus, it is fundamental to shift the focus from loss of function to maintaining good health and personal satisfaction through life; in other words, to promote optimal functionality at a level appropriate for older adults. However, it is not yet known what constitutes optimal functionality from the older adult’s own perspective. Objective To explore the concept of optimal functionality in old age from the older adult’s perspective (ie, people over 65 years of age) in industrialized Western countries. Methods We undertook a scoping review and searched two electronic databases (PubMed and the Cumulative Index to Nursing and Allied Health Literature [CINAHL]) from January 2002 to July 2013 for scientific studies, using the key search term personal satisfaction. In total, 25 scientific studies were analyzed. Results Only six of the included articles applied a qualitative methodology. By analyzing the results of these articles, three major themes were identified as cornerstones in the concept of optimal functionality at old age: 1) self-related factors (eg, mental well-being); 2) body-related factors (eg, physical well-being); and 3) external factors equal to demographic and environmental factors. Conclusion There is a lack of qualitative studies in the current literature, and hence of what constitutes optimal functionality from the older adult’s perspective. The results outlined in this review identify three cornerstones (self-related factors, body-related factors, and external factors) of what constitutes optimal functionality at old age. However, it is vital that these findings are taken further and are evaluated through qualitative studies to reflect older adults’ opinions. PMID:24516333

  7. Theory of optimal balance predicts and explains the amplitude and decay time of synaptic inhibition

    PubMed Central

    Kim, Jaekyung K.; Fiorillo, Christopher D.

    2017-01-01

    Synaptic inhibition counterbalances excitation, but it is not known what constitutes optimal inhibition. We previously proposed that perfect balance is achieved when the peak of an excitatory postsynaptic potential (EPSP) is exactly at spike threshold, so that the slightest variation in excitation determines whether a spike is generated. Using simulations, we show that the optimal inhibitory postsynaptic conductance (IPSG) increases in amplitude and decay rate as synaptic excitation increases from 1 to 800 Hz. As further proposed by theory, we show that optimal IPSG parameters can be learned through anti-Hebbian rules. Finally, we compare our theoretical optima to published experimental data from 21 types of neurons, in which rates of synaptic excitation and IPSG decay times vary by factors of about 100 (5–600 Hz) and 50 (1–50 ms), respectively. From an infinite range of possible decay times, theory predicted experimental decay times within less than a factor of 2. Across a distinct set of 15 types of neuron recorded in vivo, theory predicted the amplitude of synaptic inhibition within a factor of 1.7. Thus, the theory can explain biophysical quantities from first principles. PMID:28281523

  8. Theory of optimal balance predicts and explains the amplitude and decay time of synaptic inhibition

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kim, Jaekyung K.; Fiorillo, Christopher D.

    2017-03-01

    Synaptic inhibition counterbalances excitation, but it is not known what constitutes optimal inhibition. We previously proposed that perfect balance is achieved when the peak of an excitatory postsynaptic potential (EPSP) is exactly at spike threshold, so that the slightest variation in excitation determines whether a spike is generated. Using simulations, we show that the optimal inhibitory postsynaptic conductance (IPSG) increases in amplitude and decay rate as synaptic excitation increases from 1 to 800 Hz. As further proposed by theory, we show that optimal IPSG parameters can be learned through anti-Hebbian rules. Finally, we compare our theoretical optima to published experimental data from 21 types of neurons, in which rates of synaptic excitation and IPSG decay times vary by factors of about 100 (5-600 Hz) and 50 (1-50 ms), respectively. From an infinite range of possible decay times, theory predicted experimental decay times within less than a factor of 2. Across a distinct set of 15 types of neuron recorded in vivo, theory predicted the amplitude of synaptic inhibition within a factor of 1.7. Thus, the theory can explain biophysical quantities from first principles.

  9. Optimal Fermentation Conditions of Hyaluronidase Inhibition Activity on Asparagus cochinchinensis Merrill by Weissella cibaria.

    PubMed

    Kim, Minji; Kim, Won-Baek; Koo, Kyoung Yoon; Kim, Bo Ram; Kim, Doohyun; Lee, Seoyoun; Son, Hong Joo; Hwang, Dae Youn; Kim, Dong Seob; Lee, Chung Yeoul; Lee, Heeseob

    2017-04-28

    This study was conducted to evaluate the hyaluronidase (HAase) inhibition activity of Asparagus cochinchinesis (AC) extracts following fermentation by Weissella cibaria through response surface methodology. To optimize the HAase inhibition activity, a central composite design was introduced based on four variables: the concentration of AC extract (X1: 1-5%), amount of starter culture (X2: 1-5%), pH (X3: 4-8), and fermentation time (X4: 0-10 days). The experimental data were fitted to quadratic regression equations, the accuracy of the equations was analyzed by ANOVA, and the regression coefficients for the surface quadratic model of HAase inhibition activity in the fermented AC extract were estimated by the F test and the corresponding p values. The HAase inhibition activity indicated that fermentation time was most significant among the parameters within the conditions tested. To validate the model, two different conditions among those generated by the Design Expert program were selected. Under both conditions, predicted and experimental data agreed well. Moreover, the content of protodioscin (a well-known compound related to anti-inflammation activity) was elevated after fermentation of the AC extract at the optimized fermentation condition.

  10. A Rigorous Framework for Optimization of Expensive Functions by Surrogates

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Booker, Andrew J.; Dennis, J. E., Jr.; Frank, Paul D.; Serafini, David B.; Torczon, Virginia; Trosset, Michael W.

    1998-01-01

    The goal of the research reported here is to develop rigorous optimization algorithms to apply to some engineering design problems for which design application of traditional optimization approaches is not practical. This paper presents and analyzes a framework for generating a sequence of approximations to the objective function and managing the use of these approximations as surrogates for optimization. The result is to obtain convergence to a minimizer of an expensive objective function subject to simple constraints. The approach is widely applicable because it does not require, or even explicitly approximate, derivatives of the objective. Numerical results are presented for a 31-variable helicopter rotor blade design example and for a standard optimization test example.

  11. Optimal Piecewise Linear Basis Functions in Two Dimensions

    SciTech Connect

    Brooks III, E D; Szoke, A

    2009-01-26

    We use a variational approach to optimize the center point coefficients associated with the piecewise linear basis functions introduced by Stone and Adams [1], for polygonal zones in two Cartesian dimensions. Our strategy provides optimal center point coefficients, as a function of the location of the center point, by minimizing the error induced when the basis function interpolation is used for the solution of the time independent diffusion equation within the polygonal zone. By using optimal center point coefficients, one expects to minimize the errors that occur when these basis functions are used to discretize diffusion equations, or transport equations in optically thick zones (where they approach the solution of the diffusion equation). Our optimal center point coefficients satisfy the requirements placed upon the basis functions for any location of the center point. We also find that the location of the center point can be optimized, but this requires numerical calculations. Curiously, the optimum center point location is independent of the values of the dependent variable on the corners only for quadrilaterals.

  12. Fixed-sample optimization using a probability density function

    SciTech Connect

    Barnett, R.N.; Sun, Zhiwei; Lester, W.A. Jr. |

    1997-12-31

    We consider the problem of optimizing parameters in a trial function that is to be used in fixed-node diffusion Monte Carlo calculations. We employ a trial function with a Boys-Handy correlation function and a one-particle basis set of high quality. By employing sample points picked from a positive definite distribution, parameters that determine the nodes of the trial function can be varied without introducing singularities into the optimization. For CH as a test system, we find that a trial function of high quality is obtained and that this trial function yields an improved fixed-node energy. This result sheds light on the important question of how to improve the nodal structure and, thereby, the accuracy of diffusion Monte Carlo.

  13. Strategy based on information entropy for optimizing stochastic functions.

    PubMed

    Schmidt, Tobias Christian; Ries, Harald; Spirkl, Wolfgang

    2007-02-01

    We propose a method for the global optimization of stochastic functions. During the course of the optimization, a probability distribution is built up for the location and the value of the global optimum. The concept of information entropy is used to make the optimization as efficient as possible. The entropy measures the information content of a probability distribution, and thus gives a criterion for decisions: From several possibilities we choose the one which yields the most information concerning location and value of the global maximum sought.

  14. Study of genetic direct search algorithms for function optimization

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Zeigler, B. P.

    1974-01-01

    The results are presented of a study to determine the performance of genetic direct search algorithms in solving function optimization problems arising in the optimal and adaptive control areas. The findings indicate that: (1) genetic algorithms can outperform standard algorithms in multimodal and/or noisy optimization situations, but suffer from lack of gradient exploitation facilities when gradient information can be utilized to guide the search. (2) For large populations, or low dimensional function spaces, mutation is a sufficient operator. However for small populations or high dimensional functions, crossover applied in about equal frequency with mutation is an optimum combination. (3) Complexity, in terms of storage space and running time, is significantly increased when population size is increased or the inversion operator, or the second level adaptation routine is added to the basic structure.

  15. Optimized replica gas estimation of absolute integrals and partition functions

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Minh, David D. L.

    2010-09-01

    In contrast with most Monte Carlo integration algorithms, which are used to estimate ratios, the replica gas identities recently introduced by Adib enable the estimation of absolute integrals and partition functions using multiple copies of a system and normalized transition functions. Here, an optimized form is presented. After generalizing a replica gas identity with an arbitrary weighting function, we obtain a functional form that has the minimal asymptotic variance for samples from two replicas and is provably good for a larger number. This equation is demonstrated to improve the convergence of partition function estimates in a two-dimensional Ising model.

  16. Optimized replica gas estimation of absolute integrals and partition functions.

    SciTech Connect

    Minh, D.

    2010-01-01

    In contrast with most Monte Carlo integration algorithms, which are used to estimate ratios, the replica gas identities recently introduced by Adib enable the estimation of absolute integrals and partition functions using multiple copies of a system and normalized transition functions. Here, an optimized form is presented. After generalizing a replica gas identity with an arbitrary weighting function, we obtain a functional form that has the minimal asymptotic variance for samples from two replicas and is provably good for a larger number. This equation is demonstrated to improve the convergence of partition function estimates in a two-dimensional Ising model.

  17. Optimal design for nonlinear estimation of the hemodynamic response function.

    PubMed

    Maus, Bärbel; van Breukelen, Gerard J P; Goebel, Rainer; Berger, Martijn P F

    2012-06-01

    Subject-specific hemodynamic response functions (HRFs) have been recommended to capture variation in the form of the hemodynamic response between subjects (Aguirre et al., [ 1998]: Neuroimage 8:360-369). The purpose of this article is to find optimal designs for estimation of subject-specific parameters for the double gamma HRF. As the double gamma function is a nonlinear function of its parameters, optimal design theory for nonlinear models is employed in this article. The double gamma function is linearized by a Taylor approximation and the maximin criterion is used to handle dependency of the D-optimal design on the expansion point of the Taylor approximation. A realistic range of double gamma HRF parameters is used for the expansion point of the Taylor approximation. Furthermore, a genetic algorithm (GA) (Kao et al., [ 2009]: Neuroimage 44:849-856) is applied to find locally optimal designs for the different expansion points and the maximin design chosen from the locally optimal designs is compared to maximin designs obtained by m-sequences, blocked designs, designs with constant interstimulus interval (ISI) and random event-related designs. The maximin design obtained by the GA is most efficient. Random event-related designs chosen from several generated designs and m-sequences have a high efficiency, while blocked designs and designs with a constant ISI have a low efficiency compared to the maximin GA design.

  18. Do community-weighted mean functional traits reflect optimal strategies?

    PubMed

    Muscarella, Robert; Uriarte, María

    2016-03-30

    The notion that relationships between community-weighted mean (CWM) traits (i.e. plot-level trait values weighted by species abundances) and environmental conditions reflect selection towards locally optimal phenotypes is challenged by the large amount of interspecific trait variation typically found within ecological communities. Reconciling these contrasting patterns is a key to advancing predictive theories of functional community ecology. We combined data on geographical distributions and three traits (wood density, leaf mass per area and maximum height) of 173 tree species in Puerto Rico. We tested the hypothesis that species are more likely to occur where their trait values are more similar to the local CWM trait values (the'CWM-optimality' hypothesis) by comparing species occurrence patterns (as a proxy for fitness) with the functional composition of forest plots across a precipitation gradient. While 70% of the species supported CWM-optimality for at least one trait, nearly 25% significantly opposed it for at least one trait, thereby contributing to local functional diversity. The majority (85%) of species that opposed CWM-optimality did so only for one trait and few species opposed CWM-optimality in multivariate trait space. Our study suggests that constraints to local functional variation act more strongly on multivariate phenotypes than on univariate traits.

  19. Optimization of adiponectin-derived peptides for inhibition of cancer cell growth and signaling.

    PubMed

    Otvos, Laszlo; Kovalszky, Ilona; Olah, Julia; Coroniti, Roberta; Knappe, Daniel; Nollmann, Friederike I; Hoffmann, Ralf; Wade, John D; Lovas, Sandor; Surmacz, Eva

    2015-05-01

    Adiponectin, an adipose tissue-excreted adipokine plays protective roles in metabolic and cardiovascular diseases and exerts anti-cancer activities, partially by interfering with leptin-induced signaling. Previously we identified the active site in the adiponectin protein, and generated both a nanomolar monomeric agonist of the adiponectin receptor (10-mer ADP355) and an antagonist (8-mer ADP400) to modulate various adiponectin receptor-mediated cellular functions. As physiologically circulating adiponectin forms multimeric complexes, we also generated an agonist dimer with improved biodistribution and in vitro efficacy. In the current report, we attempted to optimize the monomeric agonist structure. Neither extension of the peptide up to 14-mer analogs nor reinstallation of native residues in permissible positions enhanced significantly the activity profile. The only substitutions that resulted in 5-10-fold improved agonistic activity were the replacement of turn-forming Gly4 and Tyr7 residues with Pro and Hyp, respectively, yielding the more active native β-sheet structure. All peptides retained good stability in human serum exhibiting half-lives >2 h. The cellular efficacy and stability rankings among the peptides followed expected structure-activity relationship trends. To investigate whether simultaneous activation of adiponectin pathways and inhibition of leptin-induced signals can result in cytostatic and anti-oncogenic signal transduction processes, we developed a chimera of the leptin receptor antagonist peptide Allo-aca (placed to the N-terminus) and ADP355 (at the C-terminus). The in vitro anti-tumor activity and intracellular signaling of the chimera were dominated by the more active Allo-aca component. The ADP355 part, however, reversed unfavorable in vivo metabolic effects of the leptin receptor antagonist.

  20. Functional Characterization of Pseudomonas Contact Dependent Growth Inhibition (CDI) Systems.

    PubMed

    Mercy, Chryslène; Ize, Bérengère; Salcedo, Suzana P; de Bentzmann, Sophie; Bigot, Sarah

    2016-01-01

    Contact-dependent inhibition (CDI) toxins, delivered into the cytoplasm of target bacterial cells, confer to host strain a significant competitive advantage. Upon cell contact, the toxic C-terminal region of surface-exposed CdiA protein (CdiA-CT) inhibits the growth of CDI- bacteria. CDI+ cells express a specific immunity protein, CdiI, which protects from autoinhibition by blocking the activity of cognate CdiA-CT. CdiA-CT are separated from the rest of the protein by conserved peptide motifs falling into two distinct classes, the "E. coli"- and "Burkholderia-type". CDI systems have been described in numerous species except in Pseudomonadaceae. In this study, we identified functional toxin/immunity genes linked to CDI systems in the Pseudomonas genus, which extend beyond the conventional CDI classes by the variability of the peptide motif that delimits the polymorphic CdiA-CT domain. Using P. aeruginosa PAO1 as a model, we identified the translational repressor RsmA as a negative regulator of CDI systems. Our data further suggest that under conditions of expression, P. aeruginosa CDI systems are implicated in adhesion and biofilm formation and provide an advantage in competition assays. All together our data imply that CDI systems could play an important role in niche adaptation of Pseudomonadaceae.

  1. Functional Characterization of Pseudomonas Contact Dependent Growth Inhibition (CDI) Systems

    PubMed Central

    Mercy, Chryslène; Ize, Bérengère; Salcedo, Suzana P.; de Bentzmann, Sophie; Bigot, Sarah

    2016-01-01

    Contact-dependent inhibition (CDI) toxins, delivered into the cytoplasm of target bacterial cells, confer to host strain a significant competitive advantage. Upon cell contact, the toxic C-terminal region of surface-exposed CdiA protein (CdiA-CT) inhibits the growth of CDI- bacteria. CDI+ cells express a specific immunity protein, CdiI, which protects from autoinhibition by blocking the activity of cognate CdiA-CT. CdiA-CT are separated from the rest of the protein by conserved peptide motifs falling into two distinct classes, the “E. coli”- and “Burkholderia-type”. CDI systems have been described in numerous species except in Pseudomonadaceae. In this study, we identified functional toxin/immunity genes linked to CDI systems in the Pseudomonas genus, which extend beyond the conventional CDI classes by the variability of the peptide motif that delimits the polymorphic CdiA-CT domain. Using P. aeruginosa PAO1 as a model, we identified the translational repressor RsmA as a negative regulator of CDI systems. Our data further suggest that under conditions of expression, P. aeruginosa CDI systems are implicated in adhesion and biofilm formation and provide an advantage in competition assays. All together our data imply that CDI systems could play an important role in niche adaptation of Pseudomonadaceae. PMID:26808644

  2. Histone Deacetylase Inhibition Restores Retinal Pigment Epithelium Function in Hyperglycemia

    PubMed Central

    Desjardins, Danielle; Liu, Yueying; Crosson, Craig E.; Ablonczy, Zsolt

    2016-01-01

    In diabetic individuals, macular edema is a major cause of vision loss. This condition is refractory to insulin therapy and has been attributed to metabolic memory. The retinal pigment epithelium (RPE) is central to maintaining fluid balance in the retina, and this function is compromised by the activation of advanced glycation end-product receptors (RAGE). Here we provide evidence that acute administration of the RAGE agonist, glycated-albumin (gAlb) or vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF), increased histone deacetylase (HDAC) activity in RPE cells. The administration of the class I/II HDAC inhibitor, trichostatin-A (TSA), suppressed gAlb-induced reductions in RPE transepithelial resistance (in vitro) and fluid transport (in vivo). Systemic TSA also restored normal RPE fluid transport in rats with subchronic hyperglycemia. Both gAlb and VEGF increased HDAC activity and reduced acetyl-α-tubulin levels. Tubastatin-A, a relatively specific antagonist of HDAC6, inhibited gAlb-induced changes in RPE cell resistance. These data are consistent with the idea that RPE dysfunction following exposure to gAlb, VEGF, or hyperglycemia is associated with increased HDAC6 activity and decreased acetyl-α-tubulin. Therefore, we propose inhibiting HDAC6 in the RPE as a potential therapy for preserving normal fluid homeostasis in the hyperglycemic retina. PMID:27617745

  3. Optimization of a van der Waals Density Functional for water

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Fritz, Michelle; Fernandez-Serra, Marivi; Soler, Jose M.

    2015-03-01

    In particularly delicate systems, like liquid water, ab initio exchange and correlation functionals are simply not accurate enough for many practical applications. In these cases, fitting the functional to reference data is a sensible alternative to empirical interatomic potentials. However, a global optimization requires functional forms that depend on many parameters and the usual trial and error strategy becomes cumbersome and suboptimal. We present a general and powerful optimization scheme called data projection onto parameter space (DPPS). In an arbitrarily large parameter space, DPPS expands the vector of unknown parameters in vectors of known data. Poorly sampled subspaces are determined by the physically-motivated functional shape of ab initio functionals, using Bayes' theory to combine this prior information with reference energies and electron densities of monomers, clusters, and condensed phases of water. We aknowledge support from FIS2012-37549 (MF and JMS) and DOE Early Career Award No. DE-SC0003871 (M.-V.F.-S.)

  4. Kaempferol inhibits Entamoeba histolytica growth by altering cytoskeletal functions.

    PubMed

    Bolaños, Verónica; Díaz-Martínez, Alfredo; Soto, Jacqueline; Marchat, Laurence A; Sanchez-Monroy, Virginia; Ramírez-Moreno, Esther

    2015-11-01

    The flavonoid kaempferol obtained from Helianthemum glomeratum, an endemic Mexican medicinal herb used to treat gastrointestinal disorders, has been shown to inhibit growth of Entamoeba histolytica trophozoites in vitro; however, the mechanisms associated with this activity have not been documented. Several works reported that kaempferol affects cytoskeleton in mammalian cells. In order to gain insights into the action mechanisms involved in the anti-amoebic effect of kaempferol, here we evaluated the effect of this compound on the pathogenic events driven by the cytoskeleton during E. histolytica infection. We also carried out a two dimensional gel-based proteomic analysis to evidence modulated proteins that could explain the phenotypical changes observed in trophozoites. Our results showed that kaempferol produces a dose-dependent effect on trophozoites growth and viability with optimal concentration being 27.7 μM. Kaempferol also decreased adhesion, it increased migration and phagocytic activity, but it did not affect erythrocyte binding nor cytolytic capacity of E. histolytica. Congruently, proteomic analysis revealed that the cytoskeleton proteins actin, myosin II heavy chain and cortexillin II were up-regulated in response to kaempferol treatment. In conclusion, kaempferol anti-amoebic effects were associated with deregulation of proteins related with cytoskeleton, which altered invasion mechanisms.

  5. Random search optimization based on genetic algorithm and discriminant function

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Kiciman, M. O.; Akgul, M.; Erarslanoglu, G.

    1990-01-01

    The general problem of optimization with arbitrary merit and constraint functions, which could be convex, concave, monotonic, or non-monotonic, is treated using stochastic methods. To improve the efficiency of the random search methods, a genetic algorithm for the search phase and a discriminant function for the constraint-control phase were utilized. The validity of the technique is demonstrated by comparing the results to published test problem results. Numerical experimentation indicated that for cases where a quick near optimum solution is desired, a general, user-friendly optimization code can be developed without serious penalties in both total computer time and accuracy.

  6. Vaccine-enhanced artificial immune system for multimodal function optimization.

    PubMed

    Woldemariam, Kumlachew M; Yen, Gary G

    2010-02-01

    This paper emulates a biological notion in vaccines to promote exploration in the search space for solving multimodal function optimization problems using artificial immune systems (AISs). In this method, we first divide the decision space into equal subspaces. The vaccine is then randomly extracted from each subspace. A few of these vaccines, in the form of weakened antigens, are then injected into the algorithm to enhance the exploration of global and local optima. The goal of this process is to lead the antibodies to unexplored areas. Using this biologically motivated notion, we design the vaccine-enhanced AIS for multimodal function optimization, achieving promising performance.

  7. Random search optimization based on genetic algorithm and discriminant function

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Kiciman, M. O.; Akgul, M.; Erarslanoglu, G.

    1990-01-01

    The general problem of optimization with arbitrary merit and constraint functions, which could be convex, concave, monotonic, or non-monotonic, is treated using stochastic methods. To improve the efficiency of the random search methods, a genetic algorithm for the search phase and a discriminant function for the constraint-control phase were utilized. The validity of the technique is demonstrated by comparing the results to published test problem results. Numerical experimentation indicated that for cases where a quick near optimum solution is desired, a general, user-friendly optimization code can be developed without serious penalties in both total computer time and accuracy.

  8. FXR and its ligands inhibit the function of platelets

    PubMed Central

    Vaiyapuri, Sakthivel; Ali, Marfoua S.; Sasikumar, Parvathy; Sage, Tanya; Flora, Gagan D; Bye, Alex P; Kriek, Neline; Dorchies, Emilie; Molendi-Coste, Olivier; Dombrowicz, David; Staels, Bart; Bishop-Bailey, David

    2016-01-01

    Objective While initially seemingly paradoxical due to the lack of nucleus, platelets possess a number of transcription factors that regulate their function through DNA-independent mechanisms. These include the Farnesoid X Receptor (FXR), a member of the superfamily of ligand-activated transcription factors that has been identified as a bile acid receptor. In this study, we show that FXR is present in human platelets and FXR ligands, GW4064 and 6-ECDCA, modulate platelet activation nongenomically. Approach and Results FXR ligands inhibited the activation of platelets in response to stimulation of collagen or thrombin receptors, resulting in diminished intracellular calcium mobilization and secretion, fibrinogen binding and aggregation. Exposure to FXR ligands also reduced integrin αIIbβ3 outside-in signaling and thereby reduced the ability of platelets to spread and to stimulate clot retraction. FXR function in platelets was found to be associated with the modulation of cGMP levels in platelets and associated downstream inhibitory signaling. Platelets from FXR-deficient mice were refractory to the actions of FXR agonists on platelet function and cyclic nucleotide signaling, firmly linking the non-genomic actions of these ligands to the FXR receptor. Conclusion This study provides support for the ability of FXR ligands to modulate platelet activation. The athero-protective effects of GW4064, with its novel antiplatelet effects, indicate FXR as a potential target for prevention of athero-thrombotic disease. PMID:27758768

  9. Methylene blue inhibits function of the 5-HT transporter

    PubMed Central

    Oz, Murat; Isaev, Dmytro; Lorke, Dietrich E; Hasan, Muhammed; Petroianu, Georg; Shippenberg, Toni S

    2012-01-01

    BACKGROUND AND PURPOSE Methylene blue (MB) is commonly employed as a treatment for methaemoglobinaemia, malaria and vasoplegic shock. An increasing number of studies indicate that MB can cause 5-HT toxicity when administered with a 5-HT reuptake inhibitor. MB is a potent inhibitor of monoamine oxidases, but other targets that may contribute to MB toxicity have not been identified. Given the role of the 5-HT transporter (SERT) in the regulation of extracellular 5-HT concentrations, the present study aimed to characterize the effect of MB on SERT. EXPERIMENTAL APPROACH Live cell imaging, in conjunction with the fluorescent SERT substrate 4-(4-(dimethylamino)-styryl)-N-methylpyridinium (ASP+), [3H]5-HT uptake and whole-cell patch-clamp techniques were employed to examine the effects of MB on SERT function. KEY RESULTS In EM4 cells expressing GFP-tagged human SERT (hSERT), MB concentration-dependently inhibited ASP+ accumulation (IC50: 1.4 ± 0.3 µM). A similar effect was observed in N2A cells. Uptake of [3H]5-HT was decreased by MB pretreatment. Furthermore, patch-clamp studies in hSERT expressing cells indicated that MB significantly inhibited 5-HT-evoked ion currents. Pretreatment with 8-Br-cGMP did not alter the inhibitory effect of MB on hSERT activity, and intracellular Ca2+ levels remained unchanged during MB application. Further experiments revealed that ASP+ binding to cell surface hSERT was reduced after MB treatment. In whole-cell radioligand experiments, exposure to MB (10 µM; 10 min) did not alter surface binding of the SERT ligand [125I]RTI-55. CONCLUSIONS AND IMPLICATIONS MB modulated SERT function and suggested that SERT may be an additional target upon which MB acts to produce 5-HT toxicity. PMID:21542830

  10. RSUME inhibits VHL and regulates its tumor suppressor function.

    PubMed

    Gerez, J; Tedesco, L; Bonfiglio, J J; Fuertes, M; Barontini, M; Silberstein, S; Wu, Y; Renner, U; Páez-Pereda, M; Holsboer, F; Stalla, G K; Arzt, E

    2015-09-10

    Somatic mutations or loss of von Hippel-Lindau (pVHL) happen in the majority of VHL disease tumors, which present a constitutively active Hypoxia Inducible Factor (HIF), essential for tumor growth. Recently described mechanisms for pVHL modulation shed light on the open question of the HIF/pVHL pathway regulation. The aim of the present study was to determine the molecular mechanism by which RSUME stabilizes HIFs, by studying RSUME effect on pVHL function and to determine the role of RSUME on pVHL-related tumor progression. We determined that RSUME sumoylates and physically interacts with pVHL and negatively regulates the assembly of the complex between pVHL, Elongins and Cullins (ECV), inhibiting HIF-1 and 2α ubiquitination and degradation. We found that RSUME is expressed in human VHL tumors (renal clear-cell carcinoma (RCC), pheochromocytoma and hemangioblastoma) and by overexpressing or silencing RSUME in a pVHL-HIF-oxygen-dependent degradation stability reporter assay, we determined that RSUME is necessary for the loss of function of type 2 pVHL mutants. The functional RSUME/pVHL interaction in VHL-related tumor progression was further confirmed using a xenograft assay in nude mice. RCC clones, in which RSUME was knocked down and express either pVHL wt or type 2 mutation, have an impaired tumor growth, as well as HIF-2α, vascular endothelial growth factor A and tumor vascularization diminution. This work shows a novel mechanism for VHL tumor progression and presents a new mechanism and factor for targeting tumor-related pathologies with pVHL/HIF altered function.

  11. Feminist Social Justice Orientation: An Indicator of Optimal Functioning?

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Moradi, Bonnie

    2012-01-01

    This article underscores several themes evident in Yoder, Snell, and Tobias's research; these include the conceptualization of feminism and social justice as inextricably linked, the conceptualization and operationalization of optimal functioning at intrapersonal, interpersonal, and collective levels, and potential connections and disconnections…

  12. Feminist Social Justice Orientation: An Indicator of Optimal Functioning?

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Moradi, Bonnie

    2012-01-01

    This article underscores several themes evident in Yoder, Snell, and Tobias's research; these include the conceptualization of feminism and social justice as inextricably linked, the conceptualization and operationalization of optimal functioning at intrapersonal, interpersonal, and collective levels, and potential connections and disconnections…

  13. Do community-weighted mean functional traits reflect optimal strategies?

    PubMed Central

    Muscarella, Robert; Uriarte, María

    2016-01-01

    The notion that relationships between community-weighted mean (CWM) traits (i.e. plot-level trait values weighted by species abundances) and environmental conditions reflect selection towards locally optimal phenotypes is challenged by the large amount of interspecific trait variation typically found within ecological communities. Reconciling these contrasting patterns is a key to advancing predictive theories of functional community ecology. We combined data on geographical distributions and three traits (wood density, leaf mass per area and maximum height) of 173 tree species in Puerto Rico. We tested the hypothesis that species are more likely to occur where their trait values are more similar to the local CWM trait values (the ‘CWM-optimality’ hypothesis) by comparing species occurrence patterns (as a proxy for fitness) with the functional composition of forest plots across a precipitation gradient. While 70% of the species supported CWM-optimality for at least one trait, nearly 25% significantly opposed it for at least one trait, thereby contributing to local functional diversity. The majority (85%) of species that opposed CWM-optimality did so only for one trait and few species opposed CWM-optimality in multivariate trait space. Our study suggests that constraints to local functional variation act more strongly on multivariate phenotypes than on univariate traits. PMID:27030412

  14. Inhibition of filamentous fungi by ketoconazole-functionalized electrospun nanofibers.

    PubMed

    Veras, Flávio Fonseca; Roggia, Isabel; Pranke, Patricia; Pereira, Cláudio Nunes; Brandelli, Adriano

    2016-03-10

    Nanotechnology strategies have been used for delivery and controlled release of antimicrobial drugs. Electrospun nanofibers can be versatile vehicles to incorporate antimicrobials. In this work, poly-ε-caprolactone nanofibers functionalized with ketoconazole were produced by electrospinning and tested against filamentous fungi. Ketoconazole-free nanofibers were produced as controls. Functionalized nanofibers showed antifungal activity against Aspergillus flavus, A. carbonarius, A. niger, Aspergillus sp. A29, Fusarium oxysporum and Penicillium citrinum by agar diffusion test. Inhibitory zones ranging from 6 to 44mm were observed, this larger inhibition was against A. flavus. The nanofibers were incubated in different simulant solutions to evaluate the ketoconazole release, which was only detected in the solution containing 5% (v/v) Tween 20. Electron microscopy images showed the nanofibers with ketoconazole presented mean diameters of 526nm, and the degradation of the nanofiber structures could be observed by electron microscopy after incubation in simulant solution. Infrared and thermal analyses indicated that ketoconazole was dispersed without chemical interactions with the polycaprolactone matrix. These results suggest that polycaprolactone nanofibers incorporating ketoconazole may be an interesting alternative to control pathogenic fungi.

  15. Obesity, Cardiovascular Fitness, and Inhibition Function: An Electrophysiological Study

    PubMed Central

    Song, Tai-Fen; Chi, Lin; Chu, Chien-Heng; Chen, Feng-Tzu; Zhou, Chenglin; Chang, Yu-Kai

    2016-01-01

    The purpose of the present study was to examine how obesity and cardiovascular fitness are associated with the inhibition aspect of executive function from behavioral and electrophysiological perspectives. One hundred college students, aged 18–25 years, were categorized into four groups of equal size on the basis of body mass index and cardiovascular fitness: a normal-weight and high-fitness (NH) group, an obese-weight and high-fitness (OH) group, a normal-weight and low-fitness (NL) group, and an obese-weight and low-fitness (OL) group. Behavioral measures of response time and number of errors, as well as event-related potential measures of P3 and N1, were assessed during the Stroop Task. The results revealed that, in general, the NH group exhibited shorter response times and larger P3 amplitudes relative to the NL and OL groups, wherein the OL group exhibited the longest response time in the incongruent condition. No group differences in N1 indices were also revealed. These findings suggest that the status of being both normal weight and having high cardiovascular fitness is associated with better behavioral and later stages of electrophysiological indices of cognitive function. PMID:27512383

  16. Inhibition of oxytocin receptor function by direct binding of progesterone.

    PubMed

    Grazzini, E; Guillon, G; Mouillac, B; Zingg, H H

    1998-04-02

    The steroid hormone progesterone (P4) is essential for establishing and maintaining pregnancy in mammals. One of its functions includes maintenance of uterine quiescence by decreasing uterine sensitivity to the uterotonic peptide hormone oxytocin. Although it is generally held that steroid hormones such as P4 act at a genomic level by binding to nuclear receptors and modulating the expression of specific target genes, we show here that the effect of P4 on uterine sensitivity to oxytocin involves direct, non-genomic action of P4 on the uterine oxytocin receptor (OTR), a member of the G-protein-coupled receptor family. P4 inhibits oxytocin binding to OTR-containing membranes in vitro, binds with high affinity to recombinant rat OTR expressed in CHO cells, and suppresses oxytocin-induced inositol phosphate production and calcium mobilization. These effects are highly steroid- and receptor-specific, because binding and signalling functions of the closely related human OTR are not affected by P4 itself but by the P4 metabolite 5beta-dihydroprogesterone. Our findings provide the first evidence for a direct interaction between a steroid hormone and a G-protein-coupled receptor and define a new level of crosstalk between the peptide- and steroid-hormone signalling pathways.

  17. Obesity, Cardiovascular Fitness, and Inhibition Function: An Electrophysiological Study.

    PubMed

    Song, Tai-Fen; Chi, Lin; Chu, Chien-Heng; Chen, Feng-Tzu; Zhou, Chenglin; Chang, Yu-Kai

    2016-01-01

    The purpose of the present study was to examine how obesity and cardiovascular fitness are associated with the inhibition aspect of executive function from behavioral and electrophysiological perspectives. One hundred college students, aged 18-25 years, were categorized into four groups of equal size on the basis of body mass index and cardiovascular fitness: a normal-weight and high-fitness (NH) group, an obese-weight and high-fitness (OH) group, a normal-weight and low-fitness (NL) group, and an obese-weight and low-fitness (OL) group. Behavioral measures of response time and number of errors, as well as event-related potential measures of P3 and N1, were assessed during the Stroop Task. The results revealed that, in general, the NH group exhibited shorter response times and larger P3 amplitudes relative to the NL and OL groups, wherein the OL group exhibited the longest response time in the incongruent condition. No group differences in N1 indices were also revealed. These findings suggest that the status of being both normal weight and having high cardiovascular fitness is associated with better behavioral and later stages of electrophysiological indices of cognitive function.

  18. Tumor Necrosis Factor Inhibits Glucocorticoid Receptor Function in Mice

    PubMed Central

    Van Bogaert, Tom; Vandevyver, Sofie; Dejager, Lien; Van Hauwermeiren, Filip; Pinheiro, Iris; Petta, Ioanna; Engblom, David; Kleyman, Anna; Schütz, Günther; Tuckermann, Jan; Libert, Claude

    2011-01-01

    As glucocorticoid resistance (GCR) and the concomitant burden pose a worldwide problem, there is an urgent need for a more effective glucocorticoid therapy, for which insights into the molecular mechanisms of GCR are essential. In this study, we addressed the hypothesis that TNFα, a strong pro-inflammatory mediator in numerous inflammatory diseases, compromises the protective function of the glucocorticoid receptor (GR) against TNFα-induced lethal inflammation. Indeed, protection of mice by dexamethasone against TNFα lethality was completely abolished when it was administered after TNFα stimulation, indicating compromised GR function upon TNFα challenge. TNFα-induced GCR was further demonstrated by impaired GR-dependent gene expression in the liver. Furthermore, TNFα down-regulates the levels of both GR mRNA and protein. However, this down-regulation seems to occur independently of GC production, as TNFα also resulted in down-regulation of GR levels in adrenalectomized mice. These findings suggest that the decreased amount of GR determines the GR response and outcome of TNFα-induced shock, as supported by our studies with GR heterozygous mice. We propose that by inducing GCR, TNFα inhibits a major brake on inflammation and thereby amplifies the pro-inflammatory response. Our findings might prove helpful in understanding GCR in inflammatory diseases in which TNFα is intimately involved. PMID:21646349

  19. Menthol inhibiting parasympathetic function of tracheal smooth muscle

    PubMed Central

    Wang, Hsing-Won; Liu, Shao-Cheng; Chao, Pin-Zhir; Lee, Fei-Peng

    2016-01-01

    Menthol is used as a constituent of food and drink, tobacco and cosmetics nowadays. This cold receptor agonist has been used as a nasal inhalation solution in the daily life. The effect of menthol on nasal mucosa in vivo is well known; however, the effect of the drug on tracheal smooth muscle has been rarely explored. Therefore, during administration of the drug for nasal symptoms, it might also affect the trachea via oral intake or inhalation. We used our preparation to test the effectiveness of menthol on isolated rat tracheal smooth muscle. A 5 mm long portion of rat trachea was submersed in 30 ml Krebs solution in a muscle bath at 37ºC. Changes in tracheal contractility in response to the application of a parasympathetic mimetic agent were measured using a transducer connected to a Pentium III computer equipped with polygraph software. The following assessments of menthol were performed: (1) effect on tracheal smooth muscle resting tension; (2) effect on contraction caused by 10-6 M methacholine as a parasympathetic mimetic; (3) effect of the drug on electrically induced tracheal smooth muscle contractions. Results indicated that addition of a parasympathetic mimetic to the incubation medium caused the trachea to contract in a dose-dependent manner. Addition of menthol at doses of 10-5 M or above elicited a relaxation response to 10-6 M methacholine-induced contraction. Menthol could also inhibit electrical field stimulation (EFS) induced spike contraction. However, it alone had a minimal effect on the basal tension of trachea as the concentration increased. We concluded that the degree of drug-induced tracheal contraction or relaxation was dose-dependent. In addition, this study indicated that high concentrations of menthol might actually inhibit parasympathetic function of the trachea. PMID:27994497

  20. A rheumatoid factor paradox: inhibition of rituximab effector function

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    Introduction Rituximab (RTX) therapy of rheumatoid arthritis (RA) exhibits enhanced effectiveness in seropositive patients. Using patient sera, we tested if this improved efficacy was associated with enhanced RTX mediated complement-dependent cytotoxicity (RTX-CDC). Methods We developed an in vitro assay for RTX-CDC using patient sera and the Daudi human B cell line. Using propidium iodide uptake and flow cytometry, we compared RTX-CDC with rheumatoid factor (RF)+ sera relative to normal volunteer, non-RA and RF- sera. Additional studies examined mixing studies of RF+ and RF- sera, as well as the effect of monoclonal IgA or IgM RF. Finally, the effect of RF on RTX mediated trogocytosis of normal B cells was evaluated. Results Using human sera, addition of RTX resulted in rapid and profound (> 50%) Daudi cell death that was complement dependent. Surprisingly, RF+ patient sera exhibited reduced RTX-CDC relative to RF- sera, with an inverse relationship of RTX-CDC and RF titer. Mixing studies indicated the presence of an inhibitor of RTX-CDC in RF+ sera. The addition of monoclonal IgM or IgA RF to RF- sera markedly inhibited RTX-CDC. This effect was specific for RF binding to the Fc portion of RTX as it was not apparent with the F(ab)' domains of RTX engineered onto IgG3 heavy chain. RF also modestly inhibited RTX mediated trogocytosis. Conclusions Contrary to expectations, RF+ sera exhibits reduced RTX-CDC due to the presence of RF. The enhanced efficacy of RTX in seropositive RA patients cannot be attributed to improved B cell depletion through CDC. This result indicates that high RF levels may potentially modulate the efficacy of any therapeutic monoclonal antibody dependent on Fc effector function. PMID:23351360

  1. Optimizing global liver function in radiation therapy treatment planning

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wu, Victor W.; Epelman, Marina A.; Wang, Hesheng; Romeijn, H. Edwin; Feng, Mary; Cao, Yue; Ten Haken, Randall K.; Matuszak, Martha M.

    2016-09-01

    Liver stereotactic body radiation therapy (SBRT) patients differ in both pre-treatment liver function (e.g. due to degree of cirrhosis and/or prior treatment) and radiosensitivity, leading to high variability in potential liver toxicity with similar doses. This work investigates three treatment planning optimization models that minimize risk of toxicity: two consider both voxel-based pre-treatment liver function and local-function-based radiosensitivity with dose; one considers only dose. Each model optimizes different objective functions (varying in complexity of capturing the influence of dose on liver function) subject to the same dose constraints and are tested on 2D synthesized and 3D clinical cases. The normal-liver-based objective functions are the linearized equivalent uniform dose (\\ell \\text{EUD} ) (conventional ‘\\ell \\text{EUD} model’), the so-called perfusion-weighted \\ell \\text{EUD} (\\text{fEUD} ) (proposed ‘fEUD model’), and post-treatment global liver function (GLF) (proposed ‘GLF model’), predicted by a new liver-perfusion-based dose-response model. The resulting \\ell \\text{EUD} , fEUD, and GLF plans delivering the same target \\ell \\text{EUD} are compared with respect to their post-treatment function and various dose-based metrics. Voxel-based portal venous liver perfusion, used as a measure of local function, is computed using DCE-MRI. In cases used in our experiments, the GLF plan preserves up to 4.6 % ≤ft(7.5 % \\right) more liver function than the fEUD (\\ell \\text{EUD} ) plan does in 2D cases, and up to 4.5 % ≤ft(5.6 % \\right) in 3D cases. The GLF and fEUD plans worsen in \\ell \\text{EUD} of functional liver on average by 1.0 Gy and 0.5 Gy in 2D and 3D cases, respectively. Liver perfusion information can be used during treatment planning to minimize the risk of toxicity by improving expected GLF; the degree of benefit varies with perfusion pattern. Although fEUD model optimization is computationally inexpensive and

  2. Direct and Evolutionary Approaches for Optimal Receiver Function Inversion

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dugda, Mulugeta Tuji

    Receiver functions are time series obtained by deconvolving vertical component seismograms from radial component seismograms. Receiver functions represent the impulse response of the earth structure beneath a seismic station. Generally, receiver functions consist of a number of seismic phases related to discontinuities in the crust and upper mantle. The relative arrival times of these phases are correlated with the locations of discontinuities as well as the media of seismic wave propagation. The Moho (Mohorovicic discontinuity) is a major interface or discontinuity that separates the crust and the mantle. In this research, automatic techniques to determine the depth of the Moho from the earth's surface (the crustal thickness H) and the ratio of crustal seismic P-wave velocity (Vp) to S-wave velocity (Vs) (kappa= Vp/Vs) were developed. In this dissertation, an optimization problem of inverting receiver functions has been developed to determine crustal parameters and the three associated weights using evolutionary and direct optimization techniques. The first technique developed makes use of the evolutionary Genetic Algorithms (GA) optimization technique. The second technique developed combines the direct Generalized Pattern Search (GPS) and evolutionary Fitness Proportionate Niching (FPN) techniques by employing their strengths. In a previous study, Monte Carlo technique has been utilized for determining variable weights in the H-kappa stacking of receiver functions. Compared to that previously introduced variable weights approach, the current GA and GPS-FPN techniques have tremendous advantages of saving time and these new techniques are suitable for automatic and simultaneous determination of crustal parameters and appropriate weights. The GA implementation provides optimal or near optimal weights necessary in stacking receiver functions as well as optimal H and kappa values simultaneously. Generally, the objective function of the H-kappa stacking problem

  3. Robust optimization of scoring functions for a target class.

    PubMed

    Seifert, Markus H J

    2009-09-01

    Target-specific optimization of scoring functions for protein-ligand docking is an effective method for significantly improving the discrimination of active and inactive molecules in virtual screening applications. Its applicability, however, is limited due to the narrow focus on, e.g., single protein structures. Using an ensemble of protein kinase structures, the publically available directory of useful decoys ligand dataset, and a novel multi-factorial optimization procedure, it is shown here that scoring functions can be tuned to multiple targets of a target class simultaneously. This leads to an improved robustness of the resulting scoring function parameters. Extensive validation experiments clearly demonstrate that (1) virtual screening performance for kinases improves significantly; (2) variations in database content affect this kind of machine-learning strategy to a lesser extent than binary QSAR models, and (3) the reweighting of interaction types is of particular importance for improved screening performance.

  4. Robust optimization of scoring functions for a target class

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Seifert, Markus H. J.

    2009-09-01

    Target-specific optimization of scoring functions for protein-ligand docking is an effective method for significantly improving the discrimination of active and inactive molecules in virtual screening applications. Its applicability, however, is limited due to the narrow focus on, e.g., single protein structures. Using an ensemble of protein kinase structures, the publically available directory of useful decoys ligand dataset, and a novel multi-factorial optimization procedure, it is shown here that scoring functions can be tuned to multiple targets of a target class simultaneously. This leads to an improved robustness of the resulting scoring function parameters. Extensive validation experiments clearly demonstrate that (1) virtual screening performance for kinases improves significantly; (2) variations in database content affect this kind of machine-learning strategy to a lesser extent than binary QSAR models, and (3) the reweighting of interaction types is of particular importance for improved screening performance.

  5. How optimization of potential functions affects protein folding.

    PubMed Central

    Hao, M H; Scheraga, H A

    1996-01-01

    The relationship between the optimization of the potential function and the foldability of theoretical protein models is studied based on investigations of a 27-mer cubic-lattice protein model and a more realistic lattice model for the protein crambin. In both the simple and the more complicated systems, optimization of the energy parameters achieves significant improvements in the statistical-mechanical characteristics of the systems and leads to foldable protein models in simulation experiments. The foldability of the protein models is characterized by their statistical-mechanical properties--e.g., by the density of states and by Monte Carlo folding simulations of the models. With optimized energy parameters, a high level of consistency exists among different interactions in the native structures of the protein models, as revealed by a correlation function between the optimized energy parameters and the native structure of the model proteins. The results of this work are relevant to the design of a general potential function for folding proteins by theoretical simulations. PMID:8643516

  6. New attitude penalty functions for spacecraft optimal control problems

    SciTech Connect

    Schaub, H.; Junkins, J.L.; Robinett, R.D.

    1996-03-01

    A solution of a spacecraft optimal control problem, whose cost function relies on an attitude description, usually depends on the choice of attitude coordinates used. A problem could be solved using 3-2-1 Euler angles or using classical Rodriguez parameters and yield two different ``optimal`` solutions, unless the performance index in invariant with respect to the attitude coordinate choice. Another problem arising with many attitude coordinates is that they have no sense of when a body has tumbled beyond 180{degrees} from the reference attitude. In many such cases it would be easier (i.e. cost less) to let the body complete the revolution than to force it to reverse the rotation and return to the desired attitude. This paper develops a universal attitude penalty function g() whose value is independent of the attitude coordinates chosen to represent it. Furthermore, this function will achieve its maximum value only when a principal rotation of {plus_minus}180{degrees} from the target state is performed. This will implicitly permit the g() function to sense the shortest rotational distance back to the reference state. An attitude penalty function which depends on the Modified Rodriguez Parameters (MRP) will also be presented. These recently discovered MRPs are a non-singular three-parameter set which can describe any three-attitude. This MRP penalty function is simpler than the attitude coordinate independent g() function, but retains the useful property of avoiding lengthy principal rotations of more than {plus_minus}180{degrees}.

  7. Optimal effector functions in human natural killer cells rely upon autocrine bone morphogenetic protein signaling.

    PubMed

    Robson, Neil C; Hidalgo, Laura; McAlpine, Tristan; Wei, Heng; Martínez, Víctor G; Entrena, Ana; Melen, Gustavo J; MacDonald, Andrew S; Phythian-Adams, Alexander; Sacedón, Rosa; Maraskovsky, Eugene; Cebon, Jonathan; Ramírez, Manuel; Vicente, Angeles; Varas, Alberto

    2014-09-15

    Natural killer (NK) cells are critical for innate tumor immunity due to their specialized ability to recognize and kill neoplastically transformed cells. However, NK cells require a specific set of cytokine-mediated signals to achieve optimal effector function. Th1-associated cytokines promote effector functions that are inhibited by the prototypic Th2 cytokine IL4 and the TGFβ superfamily members TGFβ1 and activin-A. Interestingly, the largest subgroup of the TGFβ superfamily are the bone morphogenetic proteins (BMP), but the effects of BMP signaling on NK cell effector functions have not been evaluated. Here, we demonstrate that blood-circulating NK cells express type I and II BMP receptors, BMP-2 and BMP-6 ligands, and phosphorylated isoforms of Smad-1/-5/-8, which mediate BMP family member signaling. In opposition to the inhibitory effects of TGFβ1 or activin-A, autocrine BMP signaling was supportive to NK cell function. Mechanistic investigations in cytokine and TLR-L-activated NK cells revealed that BMP signaling optimized IFNγ and global cytokine and chemokine production, phenotypic activation and proliferation, and autologous dendritic cell activation and target cytotoxicity. Collectively, our findings identify a novel auto-activatory pathway that is essential for optimal NK cell effector function, one that might be therapeutically manipulated to help eradicate tumors. Cancer Res; 74(18); 5019-31. ©2014 AACR.

  8. Optimal effector functions in human natural killer cells rely upon autocrine bone morphogenetic protein signaling

    PubMed Central

    Mc Alpine, Tristan; Wei, Heng; Martínez, Víctor G.; Entrena, Ana; Melen, Gustavo J; MacDonald, Andrew S.; Phythian-Adams, Alexander; Sacedón, Rosa; Maraskovsky, Eugene; Cebon, Jonathan; Ramírez, Manuel

    2014-01-01

    Natural killer (NK) cells are critical for innate tumor immunity due to their specialized ability to recognize and kill neoplastically transformed cells. However, NK cells require a specific set of cytokine-mediated signals to achieve optimal effector function. Th1-associated cytokines promote effector functions which are inhibited by the prototypic Th-2 cytokine IL-4 and the TGF-β superfamily members TGF-β1 and activin-A. Interestingly, the largest subgroup of the TGF-β superfamily are the bone morphogenetic proteins (BMP), but the effects of BMP signaling to NK cell effector functions have not been evaluated. Here we demonstrate that blood-circulating NK cells express type I and II BMP receptors, BMP-2 and BMP-6 ligands, and phosphorylated isoforms of Smad-1/-5/-8 which mediate BMP family member signaling. In opposition to the inhibitory effects of TGF-β1 or activin-A, autocrine BMP signaling was supportive to NK cell function. Mechanistic investigations in cytokine and TLR-L activated NK cells revealed that BMP signaling optimized IFN-γ and global cytokine and chemokine production; phenotypic activation and proliferation; autologous DC activation and target cytotoxicity. Collectively, our findings identify a novel auto-activatory pathway that is essential for optimal NK cell effector function, one which might be therapeutically manipulated to help eradicate tumors. PMID:25038228

  9. MCMV-mediated Inhibition of the Pro-apoptotic Bak Protein Is Required for Optimal In Vivo Replication

    PubMed Central

    Fleming, Peter; Kvansakul, Marc; Voigt, Valentina; Kile, Benjamin T.; Kluck, Ruth M.; Huang, David C. S.; Degli-Esposti, Mariapia A.; Andoniou, Christopher E.

    2013-01-01

    Successful replication and transmission of large DNA viruses such as the cytomegaloviruses (CMV) family of viruses depends on the ability to interfere with multiple aspects of the host immune response. Apoptosis functions as a host innate defence mechanism against viral infection, and the capacity to interfere with this process is essential for the replication of many viruses. The Bcl-2 family of proteins are the principle regulators of apoptosis, with two pro-apoptotic members, Bax and Bak, essential for apoptosis to proceed. The m38.5 protein encoded by murine CMV (MCMV) has been identified as Bax-specific inhibitor of apoptosis. Recently, m41.1, a protein product encoded by the m41 open reading frame (ORF) of MCMV, has been shown to inhibit Bak activity in vitro. Here we show that m41.1 is critical for optimal MCMV replication in vivo. Growth of a m41.1 mutant was attenuated in multiple organs, a defect that was not apparent in Bak−/− mice. Thus, m41.1 promotes MCMV replication by inhibiting Bak-dependent apoptosis during in vivo infection. The results show that Bax and Bak mediate non-redundant functions during MCMV infection and that the virus produces distinct inhibitors for each protein to counter the activity of these proteins. PMID:23468630

  10. Learning Task-Optimal Registration Cost Functions for Localizing Cytoarchitecture and Function in the Cerebral Cortex

    PubMed Central

    Sabuncu, Mert R.; Vercauteren, Tom; Holt, Daphne J.; Amunts, Katrin; Zilles, Karl; Golland, Polina; Fischl, Bruce

    2013-01-01

    Image registration is typically formulated as an optimization problem with multiple tunable, manually set parameters. We present a principled framework for learning thousands of parameters of registration cost functions, such as a spatially-varying tradeoff between the image dissimilarity and regularization terms. Our approach belongs to the classic machine learning framework of model selection by optimization of cross-validation error. This second layer of optimization of cross-validation error over and above registration selects parameters in the registration cost function that result in good registration as measured by the performance of the specific application in a training data set. Much research effort has been devoted to developing generic registration algorithms, which are then specialized to particular imaging modalities, particular imaging targets and particular postregistration analyses. Our framework allows for a systematic adaptation of generic registration cost functions to specific applications by learning the “free” parameters in the cost functions. Here, we consider the application of localizing underlying cytoarchitecture and functional regions in the cerebral cortex by alignment of cortical folding. Most previous work assumes that perfectly registering the macro-anatomy also perfectly aligns the underlying cortical function even though macro-anatomy does not completely predict brain function. In contrast, we learn 1) optimal weights on different cortical folds or 2) optimal cortical folding template in the generic weighted sum of squared differences dissimilarity measure for the localization task. We demonstrate state-of-the-art localization results in both histological and functional magnetic resonance imaging data sets. PMID:20529736

  11. Ciprofloxacin does not inhibit mitochondrial functions but other antibiotics do.

    PubMed Central

    Riesbeck, K; Bredberg, A; Forsgren, A

    1990-01-01

    At clinical concentrations, ciprofloxacin did not inhibit mitochondrial DNA replication, oxidative phosphorylation, protein synthesis, or mitochondrial mass (transmembrane potential). No difference in supercoiled forms of DNA was observed. The tetracyclines and chloramphenicol inhibited protein synthesis at clinically achievable concentrations, while rifampin, fusidic acid, and clindamycin did not. PMID:2327755

  12. Optimizing electricity consumption: A case of function learning.

    PubMed

    Guath, Mona; Millroth, Philip; Juslin, Peter; Elwin, Ebba

    2015-12-01

    A popular way to improve consumers' control over their electricity consumption is by providing outcome feedback on the cost with in-home displays. Research on function learning, however, suggests that outcome feedback may not always be ideal for learning, especially if the feedback signal is noisy. In this study, we relate research on function learning to in-home displays and use a laboratory task simulating a household to investigate the role of outcome feedback and function learning on electricity optimization. Three function training schemes (FTSs) are presented that convey specific properties of the functions that relate the electricity consumption to the utility and cost. In Experiment 1, we compared learning from outcome feedback with 3 FTSs, 1 of which allowed maximization of the utility while keeping the budget, despite no feedback about the total monthly cost. In Experiment 2, we explored the combination of this FTS and outcome feedback. The results suggested that electricity optimization may be facilitated if feedback learning is preceded by a brief period of function training.

  13. Construction of a directed hammerhead ribozyme library: towards the identification of optimal target sites for antisense-mediated gene inhibition.

    PubMed Central

    Pierce, M L; Ruffner, D E

    1998-01-01

    Antisense-mediated gene inhibition uses short complementary DNA or RNA oligonucleotides to block expression of any mRNA of interest. A key parameter in the success or failure of an antisense therapy is the identification of a suitable target site on the chosen mRNA. Ultimately, the accessibility of the target to the antisense agent determines target suitability. Since accessibility is a function of many complex factors, it is currently beyond our ability to predict. Consequently, identification of the most effective target(s) requires examination of every site. Towards this goal, we describe a method to construct directed ribozyme libraries against any chosen mRNA. The library contains nearly equal amounts of ribozymes targeting every site on the chosen transcript and the library only contains ribozymes capable of binding to that transcript. Expression of the ribozyme library in cultured cells should allow identification of optimal target sites under natural conditions, subject to the complexities of a fully functional cell. Optimal target sites identified in this manner should be the most effective sites for therapeutic intervention. PMID:9801305

  14. Galaxy Redshifts from Discrete Optimization of Correlation Functions

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lee, Benjamin C. G.; Budavári, Tamás; Basu, Amitabh; Rahman, Mubdi

    2016-12-01

    We propose a new method of constraining the redshifts of individual extragalactic sources based on celestial coordinates and their ensemble statistics. Techniques from integer linear programming (ILP) are utilized to optimize simultaneously for the angular two-point cross- and autocorrelation functions. Our novel formalism introduced here not only transforms the otherwise hopelessly expensive, brute-force combinatorial search into a linear system with integer constraints but also is readily implementable in off-the-shelf solvers. We adopt Gurobi, a commercial optimization solver, and use Python to build the cost function dynamically. The preliminary results on simulated data show potential for future applications to sky surveys by complementing and enhancing photometric redshift estimators. Our approach is the first application of ILP to astronomical analysis.

  15. Functional nanomaterials can optimize the efficacy of vaccines.

    PubMed

    Liu, Ye; Xu, Yingying; Tian, Yue; Chen, Chunying; Wang, Chen; Jiang, Xingyu

    2014-11-01

    Nanoscale materials can improve the efficacy of vaccines. Herein we review latest developments that use nanomaterials for vaccines. By highlighting the relationships between the nanoscale physicochemical characteristics and working mechanisms of nanomaterials, this paper shows the current status of the developments where researchers employ functional nanomaterials as vector and/or immunoregulators for vaccines. It also provides us some clues for improving the design and application of nanomaterials to optimize the efficacy of vaccines.

  16. Subdifferential of Optimal Value Functions in Nonlinear Infinite Programming

    SciTech Connect

    Huy, N. Q. Giang, N. D.; Yao, J.-C.

    2012-02-15

    This paper presents an exact formula for computing the normal cones of the constraint set mapping including the Clarke normal cone and the Mordukhovich normal cone in infinite programming under the extended Mangasarian-Fromovitz constraint qualification condition. Then, we derive an upper estimate as well as an exact formula for the limiting subdifferential of the marginal/optimal value function in a general Banach space setting.

  17. Behaviorally inhibited individuals demonstrate significantly enhanced conditioned response acquisition under non-optimal learning conditions.

    PubMed

    Holloway, J L; Allen, M T; Myers, C E; Servatius, R J

    2014-03-15

    Behavioral inhibition (BI) is an anxiety vulnerability factor associated with hypervigilance to novel stimuli, threat, and ambiguous cues. The progression from anxiety risk to a clinical disorder is unknown, although the acquisition of defensive learning and avoidance may be a critical feature. As the expression of avoidance is also central to anxiety development, the present study examined avoidance acquisition as a function of inhibited temperament using classical eyeblink conditioning. Individuals were classified as behaviorally inhibited (BI) or non-inhibited (NI) based on combined scores from the Adult and Retrospective Measures of Behavioural Inhibition (AMBI and RMBI, respectively). Acquisition was assessed using delay, omission, or yoked conditioning schedules of reinforcement. Omission training was identical to delay, except that the emission of an eyeblink conditioned response (CR) resulted in omission of the unconditioned airpuff stimulus (US) on that trial. Each subject in the yoked group was matched on total BI score to a subject in the omission group, and received the same schedule of CS and US delivery, resulting in a partial reinforcement training schedule. Delay conditioning elicited significantly more CRs compared to the omission and yoked contingencies, the latter two of which did not differ from each other. Thus, acquisition of an avoidance response was not apparent. BI individuals demonstrated enhanced acquisition overall, while partial reinforcement training significantly distinguished between BI and NI groups. Enhanced learning in BI may be a function of an increased defensive learning capacity, or sensitivity to uncertainty. Further work examining the influence of BI on learning acquisition is important for understanding individual differences in disorder etiology in anxiety vulnerable cohorts.

  18. Optimal Wonderful Life Utility Functions in Multi-Agent Systems

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Wolpert, David H.; Tumer, Kagan; Swanson, Keith (Technical Monitor)

    2000-01-01

    The mathematics of Collective Intelligence (COINs) is concerned with the design of multi-agent systems so as to optimize an overall global utility function when those systems lack centralized communication and control. Typically in COINs each agent runs a distinct Reinforcement Learning (RL) algorithm, so that much of the design problem reduces to how best to initialize/update each agent's private utility function, as far as the ensuing value of the global utility is concerned. Traditional team game solutions to this problem assign to each agent the global utility as its private utility function. In previous work we used the COIN framework to derive the alternative Wonderful Life Utility (WLU), and experimentally established that having the agents use it induces global utility performance up to orders of magnitude superior to that induced by use of the team game utility. The WLU has a free parameter (the clamping parameter) which we simply set to zero in that previous work. Here we derive the optimal value of the clamping parameter, and demonstrate experimentally that using that optimal value can result in significantly improved performance over that of clamping to zero, over and above the improvement beyond traditional approaches.

  19. A cubic extended interior penalty function for structural optimization

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Prasad, B.; Haftka, R. T.

    1979-01-01

    This paper describes an optimization procedure for the minimum weight design of complex structures. The procedure is based on a new cubic extended interior penalty function (CEIPF) used with the sequence of unconstrained minimization technique (SUMT) and Newton's method. The Hessian matrix of the penalty function is approximated using only constraints and their derivatives. The CEIPF is designed to minimize the error in the approximation of the Hessian matrix, and as a result the number of structural analyses required is small and independent of the number of design variables. Three example problems are reported. The number of structural analyses is reduced by as much as 50 per cent below previously reported results.

  20. A cubic extended interior penalty function for structural optimization

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Prasad, B.; Haftka, R. T.

    1979-01-01

    This paper describes an optimization procedure for the minimum weight design of complex structures. The procedure is based on a new cubic extended interior penalty function (CEIPF) used with the sequence of unconstrained minimization technique (SUMT) and Newton's method. The Hessian matrix of the penalty function is approximated using only constraints and their derivatives. The CEIPF is designed to minimize the error in the approximation of the Hessian matrix, and as a result the number of structural analyses required is small and independent of the number of design variables. Three example problems are reported. The number of structural analyses is reduced by as much as 50 per cent below previously reported results.

  1. An optimized semiclassical approximation for vibrational response functions

    PubMed Central

    Gerace, Mallory; Loring, Roger F.

    2013-01-01

    The observables of multidimensional infrared spectroscopy may be calculated from nonlinear vibrational response functions. Fully quantum dynamical calculations of vibrational response functions are generally impractical, while completely classical calculations are qualitatively incorrect at long times. These challenges motivate the development of semiclassical approximations to quantum mechanics, which use classical mechanical information to reconstruct quantum effects. The mean-trajectory (MT) approximation is a semiclassical approach to quantum vibrational response functions employing classical trajectories linked by deterministic transitions representing the effects of the radiation-matter interaction. Previous application of the MT approximation to the third-order response function R(3)(t3, t2, t1) demonstrated that the method quantitatively describes the coherence dynamics of the t3 and t1 evolution times, but is qualitatively incorrect for the waiting-time t2 period. Here we develop an optimized version of the MT approximation by elucidating the connection between this semiclassical approach and the double-sided Feynman diagrams (2FD) that represent the quantum response. Establishing the direct connection between 2FD and semiclassical paths motivates a systematic derivation of an optimized MT approximation (OMT). The OMT uses classical mechanical inputs to accurately reproduce quantum dynamics associated with all three propagation times of the third-order vibrational response function. PMID:23556706

  2. An optimized semiclassical approximation for vibrational response functions

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gerace, Mallory; Loring, Roger F.

    2013-03-01

    The observables of multidimensional infrared spectroscopy may be calculated from nonlinear vibrational response functions. Fully quantum dynamical calculations of vibrational response functions are generally impractical, while completely classical calculations are qualitatively incorrect at long times. These challenges motivate the development of semiclassical approximations to quantum mechanics, which use classical mechanical information to reconstruct quantum effects. The mean-trajectory (MT) approximation is a semiclassical approach to quantum vibrational response functions employing classical trajectories linked by deterministic transitions representing the effects of the radiation-matter interaction. Previous application of the MT approximation to the third-order response function R(3)(t3, t2, t1) demonstrated that the method quantitatively describes the coherence dynamics of the t3 and t1 evolution times, but is qualitatively incorrect for the waiting-time t2 period. Here we develop an optimized version of the MT approximation by elucidating the connection between this semiclassical approach and the double-sided Feynman diagrams (2FD) that represent the quantum response. Establishing the direct connection between 2FD and semiclassical paths motivates a systematic derivation of an optimized MT approximation (OMT). The OMT uses classical mechanical inputs to accurately reproduce quantum dynamics associated with all three propagation times of the third-order vibrational response function.

  3. Measuring Feedforward Inhibition and Its Impact on Local Circuit Function.

    PubMed

    Hull, Court

    2017-05-01

    This protocol describes a series of approaches to measure feedforward inhibition in acute brain slices from the cerebellar cortex. Using whole-cell voltage and current clamp recordings from Purkinje cells in conjunction with electrical stimulation of the parallel fibers, these methods demonstrate how to measure the relationship between excitation and inhibition in a feedforward circuit. This protocol also describes how to measure the impact of feedforward inhibition on Purkinje cell excitability, with an emphasis on spike timing. © 2017 Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory Press.

  4. Functional approximation and optimal specification of the mechanical risk index.

    PubMed

    Kaiser, Mark J; Pulsipher, Allan G

    2005-10-01

    The mechanical risk index (MRI) is a numerical measure that quantifies the complexity of drilling a well. The purpose of this article is to examine the role of the component factors of the MRI and its structural and parametric assumptions. A meta-modeling methodology is applied to derive functional expressions of the MRI, and it is shown that the MRI can be approximated in terms of a linear functional. The variation between the MRI measure and its functional specification is determined empirically, and for a reasonable design space, the functional specification is shown to a good approximating representation. A drilling risk index is introduced to quantify the uncertainty in the time and cost associated with drilling a well. A general methodology is outlined to create an optimal MRI specification.

  5. Optimizing Non-Decomposable Loss Functions in Structured Prediction

    PubMed Central

    Ranjbar, Mani; Lan, Tian; Wang, Yang; Robinovitch, Steven N.; Li, Ze-Nian; Mori, Greg

    2012-01-01

    We develop an algorithm for structured prediction with non-decomposable performance measures. The algorithm learns parameters of Markov random fields and can be applied to multivariate performance measures. Examples include performance measures such as Fβ score (natural language processing), intersection over union (object category segmentation), Precision/Recall at k (search engines) and ROC area (binary classifiers). We attack this optimization problem by approximating the loss function with a piecewise linear function. The loss augmented inference forms a quadratic program (QP), which we solve using LP relaxation. We apply this approach to two tasks: object class-specific segmentation and human action retrieval from videos. We show significant improvement over baseline approaches that either use simple loss functions or simple scoring functions on the PASCAL VOC and H3D Segmentation datasets, and a nursing home action recognition dataset. PMID:22868650

  6. Ramiprilate inhibits functional matrix metalloproteinase activity in Crohn's disease fistulas.

    PubMed

    Efsen, Eva; Saermark, Torben; Hansen, Alastair; Bruun, Eywin; Brynskov, Jørn

    2011-09-01

    effect on MMP activity. Increased functional MMP activity, notably MMP-3 and -9, is present in Crohn's fistulas and may be inhibited by ramiprilate, a widely available ACE inhibitor.

  7. Exploration of Objective Functions for Optimal Placement of Weather Stations

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Snyder, A.; Dietterich, T.; Selker, J. S.

    2016-12-01

    Many regions of Earth lack ground-based sensing of weather variables. For example, most countries in Sub-Saharan Africa do not have reliable weather station networks. This absence of sensor data has many consequences ranging from public safety (poor prediction and detection of severe weather events), to agriculture (lack of crop insurance), to science (reduced quality of world-wide weather forecasts, climate change measurement, etc.). The Trans-African Hydro-Meteorological Observatory (TAHMO.org) project seeks to address these problems by deploying and operating a large network of weather stations throughout Sub-Saharan Africa. To design the TAHMO network, we must determine where to locate each weather station. We can formulate this as the following optimization problem: Determine a set of N sites that jointly optimize the value of an objective function. The purpose of this poster is to propose and assess several objective functions. In addition to standard objectives (e.g., minimizing the summed squared error of interpolated values over the entire region), we consider objectives that minimize the maximum error over the region and objectives that optimize the detection of extreme events. An additional issue is that each station measures more than 10 variables—how should we balance the accuracy of our interpolated maps for each variable? Weather sensors inevitably drift out of calibration or fail altogether. How can we incorporate robustness to failed sensors into our network design? Another important requirement is that the network should make it possible to detect failed sensors by comparing their readings with those of other stations. How can this requirement be met? Finally, we provide an initial assessment of the computational cost of optimizing these various objective functions. We invite everyone to join the discussion at our poster by proposing additional objectives, identifying additional issues to consider, and expanding our bibliography of relevant

  8. Optimizing Experimental Design for Comparing Models of Brain Function

    PubMed Central

    Daunizeau, Jean; Preuschoff, Kerstin; Friston, Karl; Stephan, Klaas

    2011-01-01

    This article presents the first attempt to formalize the optimization of experimental design with the aim of comparing models of brain function based on neuroimaging data. We demonstrate our approach in the context of Dynamic Causal Modelling (DCM), which relates experimental manipulations to observed network dynamics (via hidden neuronal states) and provides an inference framework for selecting among candidate models. Here, we show how to optimize the sensitivity of model selection by choosing among experimental designs according to their respective model selection accuracy. Using Bayesian decision theory, we (i) derive the Laplace-Chernoff risk for model selection, (ii) disclose its relationship with classical design optimality criteria and (iii) assess its sensitivity to basic modelling assumptions. We then evaluate the approach when identifying brain networks using DCM. Monte-Carlo simulations and empirical analyses of fMRI data from a simple bimanual motor task in humans serve to demonstrate the relationship between network identification and the optimal experimental design. For example, we show that deciding whether there is a feedback connection requires shorter epoch durations, relative to asking whether there is experimentally induced change in a connection that is known to be present. Finally, we discuss limitations and potential extensions of this work. PMID:22125485

  9. Optimal Design for Informative Protocols in Xenograft Tumor Growth Inhibition Experiments in Mice.

    PubMed

    Lestini, Giulia; Mentré, France; Magni, Paolo

    2016-09-01

    Tumor growth inhibition (TGI) models are increasingly used during preclinical drug development in oncology for the in vivo evaluation of antitumor effect. Tumor sizes are measured in xenografted mice, often only during and shortly after treatment, thus preventing correct identification of some TGI model parameters. Our aims were (i) to evaluate the importance of including measurements during tumor regrowth and (ii) to investigate the proportions of mice included in each arm. For these purposes, optimal design theory based on the Fisher information matrix implemented in PFIM4.0 was applied. Published xenograft experiments, involving different drugs, schedules, and cell lines, were used to help optimize experimental settings and parameters using the Simeoni TGI model. For each experiment, a two-arm design, i.e., control versus treatment, was optimized with or without the constraint of not sampling during tumor regrowth, i.e., "short" and "long" studies, respectively. In long studies, measurements could be taken up to 6 g of tumor weight, whereas in short studies the experiment was stopped 3 days after the end of treatment. Predicted relative standard errors were smaller in long studies than in corresponding short studies. Some optimal measurement times were located in the regrowth phase, highlighting the importance of continuing the experiment after the end of treatment. In the four-arm designs, the results showed that the proportions of control and treated mice can differ. To conclude, making measurements during tumor regrowth should become a general rule for informative preclinical studies in oncology, especially when a delayed drug effect is suspected.

  10. On the functional optimization of a certain class of nonstationary spatial functions

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Christakos, G.; Paraskevopoulos, P.N.

    1987-01-01

    Procedures are developed in order to obtain optimal estimates of linear functionals for a wide class of nonstationary spatial functions. These procedures rely on well-established constrained minimum-norm criteria, and are applicable to multidimensional phenomena which are characterized by the so-called hypothesis of inherentity. The latter requires elimination of the polynomial, trend-related components of the spatial function leading to stationary quantities, and also it generates some interesting mathematics within the context of modelling and optimization in several dimensions. The arguments are illustrated using various examples, and a case study computed in detail. ?? 1987 Plenum Publishing Corporation.

  11. Translational Geroscience: Emphasizing function to achieve optimal longevity

    PubMed Central

    Seals, Douglas R.; Melov, Simon

    2014-01-01

    Among individuals, biological aging leads to cellular and organismal dysfunction and an increased risk of chronic degenerative diseases and disability. This sequence of events in combination with the projected increases in the number of older adults will result in a worldwide healthcare burden with dire consequences. Superimposed on this setting are the adults now reaching traditional retirement ages--the baby boomers--a group that wishes to remain active, productive and physically and cognitively fit as they grow older. Together, these conditions are producing an unprecedented demand for increased healthspan or what might be termed “optimal longevity”—to live long, but well. To meet this demand, investigators with interests in the biological aspects of aging from model organisms to human epidemiology (population aging) must work together within an interactive process that we describe as translational geroscience. An essential goal of this new investigational platform should be the optimization and preservation of physiological function throughout the lifespan, including integrative physical and cognitive function, which would serve to increase healthspan, compress morbidity and disability into a shorter period of late-life, and help achieve optimal longevity. To most effectively utilize this new approach, we must rethink how investigators and administrators working at different levels of the translational research continuum communicate and collaborate with each other, how best to train the next generation of scientists in this new field, and how contemporary biological-biomedical aging research should be organized and funded. PMID:25324468

  12. Defining Conditions for Optimal Inhibition of Food Intake in Rats by a Grape-Seed Derived Proanthocyanidin Extract

    PubMed Central

    Serrano, Joan; Casanova-Martí, Àngela; Blay, Mayte; Terra, Ximena; Ardévol, Anna; Pinent, Montserrat

    2016-01-01

    Food intake depends on homeostatic and non-homeostatic factors. In order to use grape seed proanthocyanidins (GSPE) as food intake limiting agents, it is important to define the key characteristics of their bioactivity within this complex function. We treated rats with acute and chronic treatments of GSPE at different doses to identify the importance of eating patterns and GSPE dose and the mechanistic aspects of GSPE. GSPE-induced food intake inhibition must be reproduced under non-stressful conditions and with a stable and synchronized feeding pattern. A minimum dose of around 350 mg GSPE/kg body weight (BW) is needed. GSPE components act by activating the Glucagon-like peptide-1 (GLP-1) receptor because their effect is blocked by Exendin 9-39. GSPE in turn acts on the hypothalamic center of food intake control probably because of increased GLP-1 production in the intestine. To conclude, GSPE inhibits food intake through GLP-1 signaling, but it needs to be dosed under optimal conditions to exert this effect. PMID:27775601

  13. In-Core Fuel Management with Biased Multiobjective Function Optimization

    SciTech Connect

    Shatilla, Youssef A.; Little, David C.; Penkrot, Jack A.; Holland, Richard Andrew

    2000-06-15

    The capability of biased multiobjective function optimization has been added to the Westinghouse Electric Company's (Westinghouse's) Advanced Loading Pattern Search code (ALPS). The search process, given a user-defined set of design constraints, proceeds to minimize a global parameter called the total value associated with constraints compliance (VACC), an importance-weighted measure of the deviation from limit and/or margin target. The search process takes into consideration two equally important user-defined factors while minimizing the VACC, namely, the relative importance of each constraint with respect to the others and the optimization of each constraint according to its own objective function. Hence, trading off margin-to-design limits from where it is abundantly available to where it is badly needed can now be accomplished. Two practical methods are provided to the user for input of constraints and associated objective functions. One consists of establishing design limits based on traditional core design parameters such as assembly/pin burnup, power, or reactivity. The second method allows the user to write a program, or script, to define a logic not possible through ordinary means. This method of script writing was made possible through the application resident compiler feature of the technical user language integration processor (tulip), developed at Westinghouse. For the optimization problems studied, ALPS not only produced candidate loading patterns (LPs) that met all of the conflicting design constraints, but in cases where the design appeared to be over constrained gave a wide range of LPs that came very close to meeting all the constraints based on the associated objective functions.

  14. Optimizing functional network representation of multivariate time series.

    PubMed

    Zanin, Massimiliano; Sousa, Pedro; Papo, David; Bajo, Ricardo; García-Prieto, Juan; del Pozo, Francisco; Menasalvas, Ernestina; Boccaletti, Stefano

    2012-01-01

    By combining complex network theory and data mining techniques, we provide objective criteria for optimization of the functional network representation of generic multivariate time series. In particular, we propose a method for the principled selection of the threshold value for functional network reconstruction from raw data, and for proper identification of the network's indicators that unveil the most discriminative information on the system for classification purposes. We illustrate our method by analysing networks of functional brain activity of healthy subjects, and patients suffering from Mild Cognitive Impairment, an intermediate stage between the expected cognitive decline of normal aging and the more pronounced decline of dementia. We discuss extensions of the scope of the proposed methodology to network engineering purposes, and to other data mining tasks.

  15. Optimizing Functional Network Representation of Multivariate Time Series

    PubMed Central

    Zanin, Massimiliano; Sousa, Pedro; Papo, David; Bajo, Ricardo; García-Prieto, Juan; Pozo, Francisco del; Menasalvas, Ernestina; Boccaletti, Stefano

    2012-01-01

    By combining complex network theory and data mining techniques, we provide objective criteria for optimization of the functional network representation of generic multivariate time series. In particular, we propose a method for the principled selection of the threshold value for functional network reconstruction from raw data, and for proper identification of the network's indicators that unveil the most discriminative information on the system for classification purposes. We illustrate our method by analysing networks of functional brain activity of healthy subjects, and patients suffering from Mild Cognitive Impairment, an intermediate stage between the expected cognitive decline of normal aging and the more pronounced decline of dementia. We discuss extensions of the scope of the proposed methodology to network engineering purposes, and to other data mining tasks. PMID:22953051

  16. Optimizing Functional Network Representation of Multivariate Time Series

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zanin, Massimiliano; Sousa, Pedro; Papo, David; Bajo, Ricardo; García-Prieto, Juan; Pozo, Francisco Del; Menasalvas, Ernestina; Boccaletti, Stefano

    2012-09-01

    By combining complex network theory and data mining techniques, we provide objective criteria for optimization of the functional network representation of generic multivariate time series. In particular, we propose a method for the principled selection of the threshold value for functional network reconstruction from raw data, and for proper identification of the network's indicators that unveil the most discriminative information on the system for classification purposes. We illustrate our method by analysing networks of functional brain activity of healthy subjects, and patients suffering from Mild Cognitive Impairment, an intermediate stage between the expected cognitive decline of normal aging and the more pronounced decline of dementia. We discuss extensions of the scope of the proposed methodology to network engineering purposes, and to other data mining tasks.

  17. Ketoconazole inhibits Malassezia furfur morphogenesis in vitro under filamentation optimized conditions.

    PubMed

    Youngchim, Sirida; Nosanchuk, Joshua D; Chongkae, Siriporn; Vanittanokom, Nongnuch

    2017-01-01

    Malassezia furfur, a constituent of the normal human skin flora, is an etiological agent of pityriasis versicolor, which represents one of the most common human skin diseases. Under certain conditions, both exogenous and endogenous, the fungus can transition from a yeast form to a pathogenic mycelial form. To develop a standardized medium for reproducible production of the mycelial form of M. furfur to develop and optimize susceptibility testing for this pathogen, we examined and characterized variables, including kojic acid and glycine concentration, agar percentage, and pH, to generate a chemically defined minimal medium on which specific inoculums of M. furfur generated the most robust filamentation. Next, we examined the capacity of ketoconazole to inhibit the formation of M. furfur mycelial form. Both low and high, 0.01, 0.05 and 0.1 µg/ml concentrations of ketoconazole significantly inhibited filamentation at 11.9, 54.5 and 86.7%, respectively. Although ketoconazole can have a direct antifungal effect on both M. furfur yeast and mycelial cells, ketoconazole also has a dramatic impact on suppressing morphogenesis. Since mycelia typified the pathogenic form of Malassezia infection, the capacity of ketoconazole to block morphogenesis may represent an additional important effect of the antifungal.

  18. Quassinoid inhibition of AP-1 function does not correlate with cytotoxicity or protein synthesis inhibition.

    PubMed

    Beutler, John A; Kang, Moon-Il; Robert, Francis; Clement, Jason A; Pelletier, Jerry; Colburn, Nancy H; McKee, Tawnya C; Goncharova, Ekaterina; McMahon, James B; Henrich, Curtis J

    2009-03-27

    Several quassinoids were identified in a high-throughput screening assay as inhibitors of the transcription factor AP-1. Further biological characterization revealed that while their effect was not specific to AP-1, protein synthesis inhibition and cell growth assays were inconsistent with a mechanism of simple protein synthesis inhibition. Numerous plant extracts from the plant family Simaroubaceae were also identified in the same screen; bioassay-guided fractionation of one extract (Ailanthus triphylla) yielded two known quassinoids, ailanthinone (3) and glaucarubinone (4), which were also identified in the pure compound screening procedure.

  19. Functional modules, structural topology, and optimal activity in metabolic networks.

    PubMed

    Resendis-Antonio, Osbaldo; Hernández, Magdalena; Mora, Yolanda; Encarnación, Sergio

    2012-01-01

    Modular organization in biological networks has been suggested as a natural mechanism by which a cell coordinates its metabolic strategies for evolving and responding to environmental perturbations. To understand how this occurs, there is a need for developing computational schemes that contribute to integration of genomic-scale information and assist investigators in formulating biological hypotheses in a quantitative and systematic fashion. In this work, we combined metabolome data and constraint-based modeling to elucidate the relationships among structural modules, functional organization, and the optimal metabolic phenotype of Rhizobium etli, a bacterium that fixes nitrogen in symbiosis with Phaseolus vulgaris. To experimentally characterize the metabolic phenotype of this microorganism, we obtained the metabolic profile of 220 metabolites at two physiological stages: under free-living conditions, and during nitrogen fixation with P. vulgaris. By integrating these data into a constraint-based model, we built a refined computational platform with the capability to survey the metabolic activity underlying nitrogen fixation in R. etli. Topological analysis of the metabolic reconstruction led us to identify modular structures with functional activities. Consistent with modular activity in metabolism, we found that most of the metabolites experimentally detected in each module simultaneously increased their relative abundances during nitrogen fixation. In this work, we explore the relationships among topology, biological function, and optimal activity in the metabolism of R. etli through an integrative analysis based on modeling and metabolome data. Our findings suggest that the metabolic activity during nitrogen fixation is supported by interacting structural modules that correlate with three functional classifications: nucleic acids, peptides, and lipids. More fundamentally, we supply evidence that such modular organization during functional nitrogen fixation is

  20. Investigation of using a power function as a cost function in inverse planning optimization.

    PubMed

    Xia, Ping; Yu, Naichang; Xing, Lei; Sun, Xuepeng; Verhey, Lynn J

    2005-04-01

    The purpose of this paper is to investigate the use of a power function as a cost function in inverse planning optimization. The cost function for each structure is implemented as an exponential power function of the deviation between the resultant dose and prescribed or constrained dose. The total cost function for all structures is a summation of the cost function of every structure. When the exponents of all terms in the cost function are set to 2, the cost function becomes a classical quadratic cost function. An independent optimization module was developed and interfaced with a research treatment planning system from the University of North Carolina for dose calculation and display of results. Three clinical cases were tested for this study with various exponents set for tumor targets and sensitive structures. Treatment plans with these exponent settings were compared, using dose volume histograms. The results of our study demonstrated that using an exponent higher than 2 in the cost function for the target achieved better dose homogeneity than using an exponent of 2. An exponent higher than 2 for serial sensitive structures can effectively reduce the maximum dose. Varying the exponent from 2 to 4 resulted in the most effective changes in dose volume histograms while the change from 4 to 8 is less drastic, indicating a situation of saturation. In conclusion, using a power function with exponent greater than 2 as a cost function can effectively achieve homogeneous dose inside the target and/or minimize maximum dose to the critical structures.

  1. The vigilance decrement in executive function is attenuated when individual chronotypes perform at their optimal time of day.

    PubMed

    Lara, Tania; Madrid, Juan Antonio; Correa, Ángel

    2014-01-01

    Time of day modulates our cognitive functions, especially those related to executive control, such as the ability to inhibit inappropriate responses. However, the impact of individual differences in time of day preferences (i.e. morning vs. evening chronotype) had not been considered by most studies. It was also unclear whether the vigilance decrement (impaired performance with time on task) depends on both time of day and chronotype. In this study, morning-type and evening-type participants performed a task measuring vigilance and response inhibition (the Sustained Attention to Response Task, SART) in morning and evening sessions. The results showed that the vigilance decrement in inhibitory performance was accentuated at non-optimal as compared to optimal times of day. In the morning-type group, inhibition performance decreased linearly with time on task only in the evening session, whereas in the morning session it remained more accurate and stable over time. In contrast, inhibition performance in the evening-type group showed a linear vigilance decrement in the morning session, whereas in the evening session the vigilance decrement was attenuated, following a quadratic trend. Our findings imply that the negative effects of time on task in executive control can be prevented by scheduling cognitive tasks at the optimal time of day according to specific circadian profiles of individuals. Therefore, time of day and chronotype influences should be considered in research and clinical studies as well as real-word situations demanding executive control for response inhibition.

  2. The Vigilance Decrement in Executive Function Is Attenuated When Individual Chronotypes Perform at Their Optimal Time of Day

    PubMed Central

    Lara, Tania; Madrid, Juan Antonio; Correa, Ángel

    2014-01-01

    Time of day modulates our cognitive functions, especially those related to executive control, such as the ability to inhibit inappropriate responses. However, the impact of individual differences in time of day preferences (i.e. morning vs. evening chronotype) had not been considered by most studies. It was also unclear whether the vigilance decrement (impaired performance with time on task) depends on both time of day and chronotype. In this study, morning-type and evening-type participants performed a task measuring vigilance and response inhibition (the Sustained Attention to Response Task, SART) in morning and evening sessions. The results showed that the vigilance decrement in inhibitory performance was accentuated at non-optimal as compared to optimal times of day. In the morning-type group, inhibition performance decreased linearly with time on task only in the evening session, whereas in the morning session it remained more accurate and stable over time. In contrast, inhibition performance in the evening-type group showed a linear vigilance decrement in the morning session, whereas in the evening session the vigilance decrement was attenuated, following a quadratic trend. Our findings imply that the negative effects of time on task in executive control can be prevented by scheduling cognitive tasks at the optimal time of day according to specific circadian profiles of individuals. Therefore, time of day and chronotype influences should be considered in research and clinical studies as well as real-word situations demanding executive control for response inhibition. PMID:24586404

  3. A hybrid artificial bee colony algorithm for numerical function optimization

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Alqattan, Zakaria N.; Abdullah, Rosni

    2015-02-01

    Artificial Bee Colony (ABC) algorithm is one of the swarm intelligence algorithms; it has been introduced by Karaboga in 2005. It is a meta-heuristic optimization search algorithm inspired from the intelligent foraging behavior of the honey bees in nature. Its unique search process made it as one of the most competitive algorithm with some other search algorithms in the area of optimization, such as Genetic algorithm (GA) and Particle Swarm Optimization (PSO). However, the ABC performance of the local search process and the bee movement or the solution improvement equation still has some weaknesses. The ABC is good in avoiding trapping at the local optimum but it spends its time searching around unpromising random selected solutions. Inspired by the PSO, we propose a Hybrid Particle-movement ABC algorithm called HPABC, which adapts the particle movement process to improve the exploration of the original ABC algorithm. Numerical benchmark functions were used in order to experimentally test the HPABC algorithm. The results illustrate that the HPABC algorithm can outperform the ABC algorithm in most of the experiments (75% better in accuracy and over 3 times faster).

  4. Human cytomegalovirus function inhibits replication of herpes simplex virus

    SciTech Connect

    Cockley, K.D.; Shiraki, K.; Rapp, F.

    1988-01-01

    Human embryonic lung (HEL) cells infected with human cytomegalovirus (HCMV) restricted the replication of herpes simplex virus type 1 (HSV-1). A delay in HSV replication of 15 h as well as a consistent, almost 3 log inhibition of HSV replication in HCMV-infected cell cultures harvested 24 to 72 h after superinfection were observed compared with controls infected with HSV alone. Treatment of HCMV-infected HEL cells with cycloheximide (100 ..mu..g/ml) for 3 or 24 h was demonstrated effective in blocking HCMV protein synthesis, as shown by immunoprecipitation with HCMV antibody-positive polyvalent serum. Cycloheximide treatment of HCMV-infected HEL cells and removal of the cycloheximide block before superinfection inhibited HSV-1 replication more efficiently than non-drug-treated superinfected controls. HCMV DNA-negative temperature-sensitive mutants restricted HSV as efficiently as wild-type HCMV suggesting that immediate-early and/or early events which occur before viral DNA synthesis are sufficient for inhibition of HSV. Inhibition of HSV-1 in HCMV-infected HEL cells was unaffected by elevated temperature (40.5/sup 0/C). However, prior UV irradiation of HCMV removed the block to HSV replication, demonstrating the requirement for an active HCMV genome. HSV-2 replication was similarly inhibited in HCMV-infected HEL cells. Superinfection of HCMV-infected HEL cells with HSV-1 labeled with (/sup 3/H)thymidine provided evidence that the labeled virus could penetrate to the nucleus of cells after superinfection. Evidence for penetration of superinfecting HSV into HCMV-infected cells was also provided by blot hybridization of HSV DNA synthesized in cells infected with HSV alone versus superinfected cell cultures at 0 and 48 h after superinfection.

  5. Scope of Gradient and Genetic Algorithms in Multivariable Function Optimization

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Shaykhian, Gholam Ali; Sen, S. K.

    2007-01-01

    Global optimization of a multivariable function - constrained by bounds specified on each variable and also unconstrained - is an important problem with several real world applications. Deterministic methods such as the gradient algorithms as well as the randomized methods such as the genetic algorithms may be employed to solve these problems. In fact, there are optimization problems where a genetic algorithm/an evolutionary approach is preferable at least from the quality (accuracy) of the results point of view. From cost (complexity) point of view, both gradient and genetic approaches are usually polynomial-time; there are no serious differences in this regard, i.e., the computational complexity point of view. However, for certain types of problems, such as those with unacceptably erroneous numerical partial derivatives and those with physically amplified analytical partial derivatives whose numerical evaluation involves undesirable errors and/or is messy, a genetic (stochastic) approach should be a better choice. We have presented here the pros and cons of both the approaches so that the concerned reader/user can decide which approach is most suited for the problem at hand. Also for the function which is known in a tabular form, instead of an analytical form, as is often the case in an experimental environment, we attempt to provide an insight into the approaches focusing our attention toward accuracy. Such an insight will help one to decide which method, out of several available methods, should be employed to obtain the best (least error) output. *

  6. An approximation function for frequency constrained structural optimization

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Canfield, R. A.

    1989-01-01

    The purpose is to examine a function for approximating natural frequency constraints during structural optimization. The nonlinearity of frequencies has posed a barrier to constructing approximations for frequency constraints of high enough quality to facilitate efficient solutions. A new function to represent frequency constraints, called the Rayleigh Quotient Approximation (RQA), is presented. Its ability to represent the actual frequency constraint results in stable convergence with effectively no move limits. The objective of the optimization problem is to minimize structural weight subject to some minimum (or maximum) allowable frequency and perhaps subject to other constraints such as stress, displacement, and gage size, as well. A reason for constraining natural frequencies during design might be to avoid potential resonant frequencies due to machinery or actuators on the structure. Another reason might be to satisy requirements of an aircraft or spacecraft's control law. Whatever the structure supports may be sensitive to a frequency band that must be avoided. Any of these situations or others may require the designer to insure the satisfaction of frequency constraints. A further motivation for considering accurate approximations of natural frequencies is that they are fundamental to dynamic response constraints.

  7. Optimal gene partition into operons correlates with gene functional order

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zaslaver, Alon; Mayo, Avi; Ronen, Michal; Alon, Uri

    2006-09-01

    Gene arrangement into operons varies between bacterial species. Genes in a given system can be on one operon in some organisms and on several operons in other organisms. Existing theories explain why genes that work together should be on the same operon, since this allows for advantageous lateral gene transfer and accurate stoichiometry. But what causes the frequent separation into multiple operons of co-regulated genes that act together in a pathway? Here we suggest that separation is due to benefits made possible by differential regulation of each operon. We present a simple mathematical model for the optimal distribution of genes into operons based on a balance of the cost of operons and the benefit of regulation that provides 'just-when-needed' temporal order. The analysis predicts that genes are arranged such that genes on the same operon do not skip functional steps in the pathway. This prediction is supported by genomic data from 137 bacterial genomes. Our work suggests that gene arrangement is not only the result of random historical drift, genome re-arrangement and gene transfer, but has elements that are solutions of an evolutionary optimization problem. Thus gene functional order may be inferred by analyzing the operon structure across different genomes.

  8. MGMT Inhibition Restores ERα Functional Sensitivity to Antiestrogen Therapy

    PubMed Central

    Bobustuc, George C; Smith, Joshua S; Maddipatla, Sreeram; Jeudy, Sheila; Limaye, Arati; Isley, Beth; Caparas, Maria-Lourdes M; Constantino, Susan M; Shah, Nikita; Baker, Cheryl H; Srivenugopal, Kalkunte S; Baidas, Said; Konduri, Santhi D

    2012-01-01

    Antiestrogen therapy resistance remains a huge stumbling block in the treatment of breast cancer. We have found significant elevation of O6 methylguanine DNA methyl transferase (MGMT) expression in a small sample of consecutive patients who have failed tamoxifen treatment. Here, we show that tamoxifen resistance is accompanied by upregulation of MGMT. Further we show that administration of the MGMT inhibitor, O6-benzylguanine (BG), at nontoxic doses, leads to restoration of a favorable estrogen receptor alpha (ERα) phosphorylation phenotype (high p-ERα Ser167/low p-ERα Ser118), which has been reported to correlate with sensitivity to endocrine therapy and improved survival. We also show BG to be a dual inhibitor of MGMT and ERα. In tamoxifen-resistant breast cancer cells, BG alone or in combination with antiestrogen (tamoxifen [TAM]/ICI 182,780 [fulvestrant, Faslodex]) therapy enhances p53 upregulated modulator of apoptosis (PUMA) expression, cytochrome C release and poly (ADP-ribose) polymerase (PARP) cleavage, all indicative of apoptosis. In addition, BG increases the expression of p21cip1/waf1. We also show that BG, alone or in combination therapy, curtails the growth of tamoxifen-resistant breast cancer in vitro and in vivo. In tamoxifen-resistant MCF7 breast cancer xenografts, BG alone or in combination treatment causes significant delay in tumor growth. Immunohistochemistry confirms that BG increases p21cip1/waf1 and p-ERα Ser167 expression and inhibits MGMT, ERα, p-ERα Ser118 and ki-67 expression. Collectively, our results suggest that MGMT inhibition leads to growth inhibition of tamoxifen-resistant breast cancer in vitro and in vivo and resensitizes tamoxifen-resistant breast cancer cells to antiestrogen therapy. These findings suggest that MGMT inhibition may provide a novel therapeutic strategy for overcoming antiestrogen resistance. PMID:22549111

  9. Application of multivariate analysis to optimize function of cultured hepatocytes.

    PubMed

    Chan, Christina; Hwang, Daehee; Stephanopoulos, Gregory N; Yarmush, Martin L; Stephanopoulos, George

    2003-01-01

    Understanding the metabolic and regulatory pathways of hepatocytes is important for biotechnological applications involving liver cells, including the development of bioartificial liver (BAL) devices. To characterize intermediary metabolism in the hepatocytes, metabolic flux analysis (MFA) was applied to elucidate the changes in intracellular pathway fluxes of primary rat hepatocytes exposed to human plasma and to provide a comprehensive snapshot of the hepatic metabolic profile. In the current study, the combination of preconditioning and plasma supplementation produced distinct metabolic states. Combining the metabolic flux distribution obtained by MFA with methodologies such as Fisher discriminant analysis (FDA) and partial least squares or projection to latent structures (PLS) provided insights into the underlying structure and causal relationship within the data. With the aid of these analyses, patterns in the cellular response of the hepatocytes that contributed to the separation of the different hepatic states were identified. Of particular interest was the recognition of distal pathways that strongly correlated with a particular hepatic function. The hepatic functions investigated were intracellular triglyceride accumulation and urea production. This study illustrates a framework for optimizing hepatic function and a possibility of identifying potential targets for improving hepatic functions.

  10. Rejuvenating cellular respiration for optimizing respiratory function: targeting mitochondria.

    PubMed

    Agrawal, Anurag; Mabalirajan, Ulaganathan

    2016-01-15

    Altered bioenergetics with increased mitochondrial reactive oxygen species production and degradation of epithelial function are key aspects of pathogenesis in asthma and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD). This motif is not unique to obstructive airway disease, reported in related airway diseases such as bronchopulmonary dysplasia and parenchymal diseases such as pulmonary fibrosis. Similarly, mitochondrial dysfunction in vascular endothelium or skeletal muscles contributes to the development of pulmonary hypertension and systemic manifestations of lung disease. In experimental models of COPD or asthma, the use of mitochondria-targeted antioxidants, such as MitoQ, has substantially improved mitochondrial health and restored respiratory function. Modulation of noncoding RNA or protein regulators of mitochondrial biogenesis, dynamics, or degradation has been found to be effective in models of fibrosis, emphysema, asthma, and pulmonary hypertension. Transfer of healthy mitochondria to epithelial cells has been associated with remarkable therapeutic efficacy in models of acute lung injury and asthma. Together, these form a 3R model--repair, reprogramming, and replacement--for mitochondria-targeted therapies in lung disease. This review highlights the key role of mitochondrial function in lung health and disease, with a focus on asthma and COPD, and provides an overview of mitochondria-targeted strategies for rejuvenating cellular respiration and optimizing respiratory function in lung diseases. Copyright © 2016 the American Physiological Society.

  11. Is there an optimal deconvolution method for receiver function imaging?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Spieker, Kathrin; Rondenay, Stéphane; Halpaap, Felix

    2015-04-01

    Deconvolution is an essential processing step in receiver function analysis. A variety of deconvolution approaches have been employed over the past few decades, including frequency-domain spectral division, multi-taper cross-correlation, time-domain least squares filtering, and iterative time-domain deconvolution. Every deconvolution approach has its advantages and disadvantages but no systematic comparison of these approaches has yet been done. Here, we carry out benchmark tests on synthetic and real data to assess how the various approaches perform for different input conditions including noise content and the complexity of the target structure. We present the results of this comparison and evaluate the various deconvolution approaches to provide a set of guidelines on how to use the different types of deconvolutions more efficently. Generally, our results show that the different approaches produce receiver functions that are equally robust provided that a suitable regularization parameter is found. For this purpose, we propose an efficient way of finding an optimal regularization parameter through the measure of spectral flatness of the receiver function. Our deconvolution intercomparison results also help us estimate the uncertainty of the receiver functions more accurately. In the process, we find that some deconvolution approaches may be better adapted than others to addressing specific imaging goals.

  12. Optimal Design of Functionally Graded Metallic Foam Insulations

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Haftka, Raphael T.; Sankar, Bhavani; Venkataraman, Satchi; Zhu, Huadong

    2002-01-01

    The focus of our work has been on developing an insight into the physics that govern the optimum design of thermal insulation for use in thermal protection systems of launch vehicle. Of particular interest was to obtain optimality criteria for designing foam insulations that have density (or porosity) distributions through the thickness for optimum thermal performance. We investigate the optimum design of functionally graded thermal insulation for steady state heat transfer through the foam. We showed that the heat transfer in the foam has competing modes, of radiation and conduction. The problem assumed a fixed inside temperature of 400 K and varied the aerodynamic surface heating on the outside surface from 0.2 to 1.0 MW/sq m. The thermal insulation develops a high temperature gradient through the thickness. Investigation of the model developed for heat conduction in foams showed that at high temperatures (as on outside wall) intracellular radiation dominates the heat transfer in the foam. Minimizing radiation requires reducing the pore size, which increases the density of the foam. At low temperatures (as on the inside wall), intracellular conduction (of the metal and air) dominates the heat transfer. Minimizing conduction requires increasing the pore size. This indicated that for every temperature there was an optimum value of density that minimized the heat transfer coefficient. Two optimization studies were performed. One was to minimize the heat transmitted though a fixed thickness insulation by varying density profiles. The second was to obtain the minimum mass insulation for specified thickness. Analytical optimality criteria were derived for the cases considered. The optimality condition for minimum heat transfer required that at each temperature we find the density that minimizes the heat transfer coefficient. Once a relationship between the optimum heat transfer coefficient and the temperature was found, the design problem reduced to the solution of a

  13. Deammonification for digester supernatant pretreated with thermal hydrolysis: overcoming inhibition through process optimization.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Qi; De Clippeleir, Haydée; Su, Chunyang; Al-Omari, Ahmed; Wett, Bernhard; Vlaeminck, Siegfried E; Murthy, Sudhir

    2016-06-01

    The thermal hydrolysis process (THP) has been proven to be an excellent pretreatment step for an anaerobic digester (AD), increasing biogas yield and decreasing sludge disposal. The goal of this work was to optimize deammonification for efficient nitrogen removal despite the inhibition effects caused by the organics present in the THP-AD sludge filtrate (digestate). Two sequencing batch reactors were studied treating conventional digestate and THP-AD digestate, respectively. Improved process control based on higher dissolved oxygen set-point (1 mg O2/L) and longer aeration times could achieve successful treatment of THP-AD digestate. This increased set-point could overcome the inhibition effect on aerobic ammonium-oxidizing bacteria (AerAOB), potentially caused by particulate and colloidal organics. Moreover, based on the mass balance, anoxic ammonium-oxidizing bacteria (AnAOB) contribution to the total nitrogen removal decreased from 97 ± 1 % for conventional to 72 ± 5 % for THP-AD digestate treatment, but remained stable by selective AnAOB retention using a vibrating screen. Overall, similar total nitrogen removal rates of 520 ± 28 mg N/L/day at a loading rate of 600 mg N/L/day were achieved in the THP-AD reactor compared to the conventional digestate treatment operating at low dissolved oxygen (DO) (0.38 ± 0.10 mg O2/L).

  14. Optimizing cyanobacteria growth conditions in a sealed environment to enable chemical inhibition tests with volatile chemicals.

    PubMed

    Johnson, Tylor J; Zahler, Jacob D; Baldwin, Emily L; Zhou, Ruanbao; Gibbons, William R

    2016-07-01

    Cyanobacteria are currently being engineered to photosynthetically produce next-generation biofuels and high-value chemicals. Many of these chemicals are highly toxic to cyanobacteria, thus strains with increased tolerance need to be developed. The volatility of these chemicals may necessitate that experiments be conducted in a sealed environment to maintain chemical concentrations. Therefore, carbon sources such as NaHCO3 must be used for supporting cyanobacterial growth instead of CO2 sparging. The primary goal of this study was to determine the optimal initial concentration of NaHCO3 for use in growth trials, as well as if daily supplementation of NaHCO3 would allow for increased growth. The secondary goal was to determine the most accurate method to assess growth of Anabaena sp. PCC 7120 in a sealed environment with low biomass titers and small sample volumes. An initial concentration of 0.5g/L NaHCO3 was found to be optimal for cyanobacteria growth, and fed-batch additions of NaHCO3 marginally improved growth. A separate study determined that a sealed test tube environment is necessary to maintain stable titers of volatile chemicals in solution. This study also showed that a SYTO® 9 fluorescence-based assay for cell viability was superior for monitoring filamentous cyanobacterial growth compared to absorbance, chlorophyll α (chl a) content, and biomass content due to its accuracy, small sampling size (100μL), and high throughput capabilities. Therefore, in future chemical inhibition trials, it is recommended that 0.5g/L NaHCO3 is used as the carbon source, and that culture viability is monitored via the SYTO® 9 fluorescence-based assay that requires minimum sample size. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  15. Tamoxifen and its active metabolites inhibit dopamine transporter function independently of the estrogen receptors.

    PubMed

    Mikelman, Sarah R; Guptaroy, Bipasha; Gnegy, Margaret E

    2017-04-01

    As one of the primary mechanisms by which dopamine signaling is regulated, the dopamine transporter (DAT) is an attractive pharmacological target for the treatment of diseases based in dopaminergic dysfunction. In this work we demonstrate for the first time that the commonly prescribed breast cancer therapeutic tamoxifen and its major metabolites, 4-hydroxytamoxifen and endoxifen, inhibit DAT function. Tamoxifen inhibits [(3) H]dopamine uptake into human DAT (hDAT)-N2A cells via an uncompetitive or mixed mechanism. Endoxifen, an active metabolite of tamoxifen, asymmetrically inhibits DAT function in hDAT-N2A cells, showing a preference for the inhibition of amphetamine-stimulated dopamine efflux as compared to dopamine uptake. Importantly, we demonstrate that the effects of tamoxifen and its metabolites on the DAT occur independently of its activity as selective estrogen receptor modulators. This work suggests that tamoxifen is inhibiting DAT function through a previously unidentified mechanism. © 2017 International Society for Neurochemistry.

  16. Cerebellar on-beam and lateral inhibition: two functionally distinct circuits.

    PubMed

    Cohen, D; Yarom, Y

    2000-04-01

    Optical imaging of voltage-sensitive dyes in an isolated cerebellum preparation was used to study the spatiotemporal functional organization of the inhibitory systems in the cerebellar cortex. Responses to surface stimulation of the cortex reveal two physiologically distinct inhibitory systems, which we refer to as lateral and on-beam inhibition following classical terminology. Lateral inhibition occurs throughout the area responding to a stimulus, whereas on-beam inhibition is confined to the area directly excited by parallel fibers. The time course of the lateral inhibition is twice as long as that of the on-beam inhibition. Both inhibitory responses increase with stimulus intensity, but the lateral inhibition has a lower threshold, and it saturates at lower stimulus intensity. The amplitude of the on-beam inhibition is linearly related to the excitation at the same location, whereas that of the lateral inhibition is linearly related to the excitation at the center of the beam. Repetitive stimulation is required to activate on-beam inhibition, whereas the same stimulus paradigm reveals prolonged depression of the lateral inhibition. We conclude that lateral inhibition reflects the activation of molecular layer interneurons, and its major role is to increase the excitability of the activated area by disinhibition. The on-beam inhibition most likely reflects Golgi cell inhibition of granule cells. However, Purkinje cell collateral inhibition of Golgi cells cannot be excluded. Both possibilities suggest that the role of the on-beam inhibition is to efficiently modulate, in time and space, the mossy fiber input to the cerebellar cortex.

  17. Surface responses and desirability functions to determine optimal granulation domains.

    PubMed

    Giry, K; Viana, M; Genty, M; Wüthrich, P; Chulia, D

    2010-09-01

    Single pot mixer-granulator-dryer (high-shear granulator with in situ double jacket vacuum drying) and multiphase equipment (high-shear granulator associated with fluid bed dryer) are classically used for wet granulation. At present time, industrial production imperatives may require to switch one formulation from one equipment to another. To compare the two processes and to define, for each of them, the optimal formulation domain, experiments were organized according to Doehlert experimental designs. Response surfaces were used to identify the levels of each factor (binder and filler ratios) inducing the more satisfying responses. The contribution of binder and filler ratios to granule properties was highlighted according to the process. Then the desirability function was used to determine and compare the optimal formulation domain for each process. In the studied formulation domain and for the considered equipment, the transposition from a single pot to a multiphase high-shear granulation process did not seem to raise difficulties; the same formulations were out of specification for both processes and other trials, the technological properties were maintained or improved in the Fielder/Niro equipment.

  18. Function-valued adaptive dynamics and optimal control theory.

    PubMed

    Parvinen, Kalle; Heino, Mikko; Dieckmann, Ulf

    2013-09-01

    In this article we further develop the theory of adaptive dynamics of function-valued traits. Previous work has concentrated on models for which invasion fitness can be written as an integral in which the integrand for each argument value is a function of the strategy value at that argument value only. For this type of models of direct effect, singular strategies can be found using the calculus of variations, with singular strategies needing to satisfy Euler's equation with environmental feedback. In a broader, more mechanistically oriented class of models, the function-valued strategy affects a process described by differential equations, and fitness can be expressed as an integral in which the integrand for each argument value depends both on the strategy and on process variables at that argument value. In general, the calculus of variations cannot help analyzing this much broader class of models. Here we explain how to find singular strategies in this class of process-mediated models using optimal control theory. In particular, we show that singular strategies need to satisfy Pontryagin's maximum principle with environmental feedback. We demonstrate the utility of this approach by studying the evolution of strategies determining seasonal flowering schedules.

  19. Optimal hemodynamic response model for functional near-infrared spectroscopy

    PubMed Central

    Kamran, Muhammad A.; Jeong, Myung Yung; Mannan, Malik M. N.

    2015-01-01

    Functional near-infrared spectroscopy (fNIRS) is an emerging non-invasive brain imaging technique and measures brain activities by means of near-infrared light of 650–950 nm wavelengths. The cortical hemodynamic response (HR) differs in attributes at different brain regions and on repetition of trials, even if the experimental paradigm is kept exactly the same. Therefore, an HR model that can estimate such variations in the response is the objective of this research. The canonical hemodynamic response function (cHRF) is modeled by two Gamma functions with six unknown parameters (four of them to model the shape and other two to scale and baseline respectively). The HRF model is supposed to be a linear combination of HRF, baseline, and physiological noises (amplitudes and frequencies of physiological noises are supposed to be unknown). An objective function is developed as a square of the residuals with constraints on 12 free parameters. The formulated problem is solved by using an iterative optimization algorithm to estimate the unknown parameters in the model. Inter-subject variations in HRF and physiological noises have been estimated for better cortical functional maps. The accuracy of the algorithm has been verified using 10 real and 15 simulated data sets. Ten healthy subjects participated in the experiment and their HRF for finger-tapping tasks have been estimated and analyzed. The statistical significance of the estimated activity strength parameters has been verified by employing statistical analysis (i.e., t-value > tcritical and p-value < 0.05). PMID:26136668

  20. Functional Developmental Changes Underlying Response Inhibition and Error-Detection Processes

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Braet, Wouter; Johnson, Katherine A.; Tobin, Claire T.; Acheson, Ruth; Bellgrove, Mark A.; Robertson, Ian H.; Garavan, Hugh

    2009-01-01

    This study examined the developmental trajectories associated with response inhibition and error processing as exemplar executive processes. We present fMRI data showing developmental changes to the functional networks underlying response inhibition and error-monitoring, comparing activation between adults and young adolescents performing the…

  1. The Relations Among Inhibition and Interference Control Functions: A Latent-Variable Analysis

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Friedman, Naomi P.; Miyake, Akira

    2004-01-01

    This study used data from 220 adults to examine the relations among 3 inhibition-related functions. Confirmatory factor analysis suggested that Prepotent Response Inhibition and Resistance to Distractor Interference were closely related, but both were unrelated to Resistance to Proactive Interference. Structural equation modeling, which combined…

  2. Functional Developmental Changes Underlying Response Inhibition and Error-Detection Processes

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Braet, Wouter; Johnson, Katherine A.; Tobin, Claire T.; Acheson, Ruth; Bellgrove, Mark A.; Robertson, Ian H.; Garavan, Hugh

    2009-01-01

    This study examined the developmental trajectories associated with response inhibition and error processing as exemplar executive processes. We present fMRI data showing developmental changes to the functional networks underlying response inhibition and error-monitoring, comparing activation between adults and young adolescents performing the…

  3. Improving balance function using vestibular stochastic resonance: optimizing stimulus characteristics.

    PubMed

    Mulavara, Ajitkumar P; Fiedler, Matthew J; Kofman, Igor S; Wood, Scott J; Serrador, Jorge M; Peters, Brian; Cohen, Helen S; Reschke, Millard F; Bloomberg, Jacob J

    2011-04-01

    Stochastic resonance (SR) is a phenomenon whereby the response of a non-linear system to a weak periodic input signal is optimized by the presence of a particular non-zero level of noise. Stochastic resonance using imperceptible stochastic vestibular electrical stimulation, when applied to normal young and elderly subjects, has been shown to significantly improve ocular stabilization reflexes in response to whole-body tilt; improved balance performance during postural disturbances and optimize covariance between the weak input periodic signals introduced via venous blood pressure receptors and the heart rate responses. In our study, 15 subjects stood on a compliant surface with their eyes closed. They were given low-amplitude binaural bipolar stochastic electrical stimulation of the vestibular organs in two frequency ranges of 1-2 and 0-30 Hz over the amplitude range of 0 to ±700 μA. Subjects were instructed to maintain an upright stance during 43-s trials, which consisted of baseline (zero amplitude) and stimulation (non-zero amplitude) periods. Measures of stability of the head and trunk using inertial motion unit sensors attached to these segments and the whole body using a force plate were measured and quantified in the mediolateral plane. Using a multivariate optimization criterion, our results show that the low levels of vestibular stimulation given to the vestibular organs improved balance performance in normal healthy subjects in the range of 5-26% consistent with the stochastic resonance phenomenon. In our study, 8 of 15 and 10 of 15 subjects were responsive for the 1-2- and 0-30-Hz stimulus signals, respectively. The improvement in balance performance did not differ significantly between the stimulations in the two frequency ranges. The amplitude of optimal stimulus for improving balance performance was predominantly in the range of ±100 to ±400 μA. A device based on SR stimulation of the vestibular system might be useful as either a training

  4. Orbital-dependent functionals in FLAPW: hybrid functionals and optimized effective potentials

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Blügel, Stefan

    2011-03-01

    Orbital-dependent functionals are a new class of exchange-correlation (xc) functionals for density-functional theory. Hybrid functionals combine a local or semi-local xc functional with a nonlocal orbital-dependent exchange functional and improve the band gaps of semiconductors and insulators as well as the description of localized states. As an alternative to nonlocal hybrid potentials, one can also construct local optimized effective potentials (OEP) from the exact exchange (EXX) functional. So far, most implementations for periodic systems use a pseudopotential plane-wave approach. We present an efficient all-electron, full-potential implementation of the PBE0 and HSE hybrid functionals as well as the OEP-EXX functional within the FLAPW method (Fleur code: www.flapw.de). Results for prototype semiconductors and insulators are in very good agreement with other implementations. We will demonstrate the improvement over conventional local or semilocal functionals for oxide materials and focus in particular on systems where standard functionals yield qualitatively wrong results. In particular, we will discuss the geometric and magnetic structures of EuO and GdN. Additionally, we will address the possibility of using the hybrid-functional ground state as starting point for a GW quasiparticle correction and show results for complex perovskite systems. Financial support from the DFG through the Priority Program 1145 and the Helmholtz association through the Young Investigators Group Program, contract VH-NG-409, is gratefully acknowledged.

  5. Neutralizing nanobodies targeting diverse chemokines effectively inhibit chemokine function.

    PubMed

    Blanchetot, Christophe; Verzijl, Dennis; Mujić-Delić, Azra; Bosch, Leontien; Rem, Louise; Leurs, Rob; Verrips, C Theo; Saunders, Michael; de Haard, Hans; Smit, Martine J

    2013-08-30

    Chemokine receptors and their ligands play a prominent role in immune regulation but many have also been implicated in inflammatory diseases such as multiple sclerosis, rheumatoid arthritis, allograft rejection after transplantation, and also in cancer metastasis. Most approaches to therapeutically target the chemokine system involve targeting of chemokine receptors with low molecular weight antagonists. Here we describe the selection and characterization of an unprecedented large and diverse panel of neutralizing Nanobodies (single domain camelid antibodies fragment) directed against several chemokines. We show that the Nanobodies directed against CCL2 (MCP-1), CCL5 (RANTES), CXCL11 (I-TAC), and CXCL12 (SDF-1α) bind the chemokines with high affinity (at nanomolar concentration), thereby blocking receptor binding, inhibiting chemokine-induced receptor activation as well as chemotaxis. Together, we show that neutralizing Nanobodies can be selected efficiently for effective and specific therapeutic treatment against a wide range of immune and inflammatory diseases.

  6. A Little Goes a Long Way: Low Working Memory Load Is Associated with Optimal Distractor Inhibition and Increased Vagal Control under Anxiety

    PubMed Central

    Spangler, Derek P.; Friedman, Bruce H.

    2017-01-01

    Anxiety impairs both inhibition of distraction and attentional focus. It is unclear whether these impairments are reduced or exacerbated when loading working memory with non-affective information. Cardiac vagal control has been related to top–down regulation of anxiety; therefore, vagal control may reflect load-related inhibition of distraction under anxiety. The present study examined whether: (1) the enhancing and impairing effects of load on inhibition exist together in a non-linear function, (2) there is a similar association between inhibition and concurrent vagal control under anxiety. During anxiogenic threat-of-noise, 116 subjects maintained a digit series of varying lengths (0, 2, 4, and 6 digits) while completing a visual flanker task. The task was broken into four blocks, with a baseline period preceding each. Electrocardiography was acquired throughout to quantify vagal control as high-frequency heart rate variability (HRV). There were significant quadratic relations of working memory load to flanker performance and to HRV, but no associations between HRV and performance. Results indicate that low load was associated with relatively better inhibition and increased HRV. These findings suggest that attentional performance under anxiety depends on the availability of working memory resources, which might be reflected by vagal control. These results have implications for treating anxiety disorders, in which regulation of anxiety can be optimized for attentional focus. PMID:28217091

  7. Gray Matter Volume of the Lingual Gyrus Mediates the Relationship between Inhibition Function and Divergent Thinking.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Lijie; Qiao, Lei; Chen, Qunlin; Yang, Wenjing; Xu, Mengsi; Yao, Xiaonan; Qiu, Jiang; Yang, Dong

    2016-01-01

    Although previous research provides converging evidence for the role of posterior regions of the brain (including temporal, occipital, and parietal regions) involved in inhibition on creative thinking, it remains unclear as to how these regions influence individual differences in creative thinking. Thus, we explored the relationship between posterior regions (i.e., hippocampal, parahippocampal, lingual gyrus, precuneus, and cuneus), inhibition function, and divergent thinking (DT) in 128 healthy college students. The results revealed that lower inhibition was associated with larger gray matter volume (GMV) in the lingual gyrus, which in turn was associated with higher DT. In addition, GMV in the lingual gyrus mediated the association between inhibition and DT. These results provide new evidence for the role of inhibition in creative thinking. Inhibition may affect the amount of information stored in long-term memory, which, in turn influences DT.

  8. Gray Matter Volume of the Lingual Gyrus Mediates the Relationship between Inhibition Function and Divergent Thinking

    PubMed Central

    Zhang, Lijie; Qiao, Lei; Chen, Qunlin; Yang, Wenjing; Xu, Mengsi; Yao, Xiaonan; Qiu, Jiang; Yang, Dong

    2016-01-01

    Although previous research provides converging evidence for the role of posterior regions of the brain (including temporal, occipital, and parietal regions) involved in inhibition on creative thinking, it remains unclear as to how these regions influence individual differences in creative thinking. Thus, we explored the relationship between posterior regions (i.e., hippocampal, parahippocampal, lingual gyrus, precuneus, and cuneus), inhibition function, and divergent thinking (DT) in 128 healthy college students. The results revealed that lower inhibition was associated with larger gray matter volume (GMV) in the lingual gyrus, which in turn was associated with higher DT. In addition, GMV in the lingual gyrus mediated the association between inhibition and DT. These results provide new evidence for the role of inhibition in creative thinking. Inhibition may affect the amount of information stored in long-term memory, which, in turn influences DT. PMID:27752250

  9. Inhibition of platelet function by contrast media: iopamidol and ioxaglate versus iothalamate: work in progress

    SciTech Connect

    Rao, A.K.; Rao, V.M.; Willis, J.; Beckett, C.; Steiner, R.M.

    1985-08-01

    The effects of an ionic contrast agent, meglumine iothalamate (Conray-60), and two newer low-osmolality radiographic contrast media, sodium meglumine ioxaglate (Hexabrix) and iopamidol (B-15,000), on platelet aggregation and secretion responses were studied. All three agents inhibited platelet responses during stimulation with adenosine diphosphate (ADP), epinephrine, and collagen. Platelet function was inhibited by iothalamate at concentrations of 11 mg iodine/ml and above, and by the newer agents at concentrations above 30 mg iodine/ml. Addition of exogenous calcium decreased the iothalamate-induced inhibition of aggregation but did not improve dense granule secretion. These studies indicate that the newer agents inhibit platelet function less than iothalamate does, and that chelation of Ca/sup 2 +/ may not be the major mechanism of platelet inhibition by contrast agents.

  10. Impact of Chaos Functions on Modern Swarm Optimizers

    PubMed Central

    Emary, E.

    2016-01-01

    Exploration and exploitation are two essential components for any optimization algorithm. Much exploration leads to oscillation and premature convergence while too much exploitation slows down the optimization algorithm and the optimizer may be stuck in local minima. Therefore, balancing the rates of exploration and exploitation at the optimization lifetime is a challenge. This study evaluates the impact of using chaos-based control of exploration/exploitation rates against using the systematic native control. Three modern algorithms were used in the study namely grey wolf optimizer (GWO), antlion optimizer (ALO) and moth-flame optimizer (MFO) in the domain of machine learning for feature selection. Results on a set of standard machine learning data using a set of assessment indicators prove advance in optimization algorithm performance when using variational repeated periods of declined exploration rates over using systematically decreased exploration rates. PMID:27410691

  11. High functional load inhibits phonological contrast loss: a corpus study.

    PubMed

    Wedel, Andrew; Kaplan, Abby; Jackson, Scott

    2013-08-01

    For nearly a century, linguists have suggested that diachronic merger is less likely between phonemes with a high functional load--that is, phonemes that distinguish many words in the language in question. However, limitations in data and computational power have made assessing this hypothesis difficult. Here we present the first larger-scale study of the functional load hypothesis, using data from sound changes in a diverse set of languages. Our results support the functional load hypothesis: phoneme pairs undergoing merger distinguish significantly fewer minimal pairs in the lexicon than unmerged phoneme pairs. Furthermore, we show that higher phoneme probability is positively correlated with merger, but that this effect is stronger for phonemes that distinguish no minimal pairs. Finally, within our dataset we find that minimal pair count and phoneme probability better predict merger than change in system entropy at the lexical or phoneme level.

  12. Apelin: an antithrombotic factor that inhibits platelet function.

    PubMed

    Adam, Frédéric; Khatib, Abdel-Majid; Lopez, Jose Javier; Vatier, Camille; Turpin, Sabrina; Muscat, Adeline; Soulet, Fabienne; Aries, Anne; Jardin, Isaac; Bobe, Régis; Stepanian, Alain; de Prost, Dominique; Dray, Cédric; Rosado, Juan Antonio; Valet, Philippe; Feve, Bruno; Siegfried, Geraldine

    2016-02-18

    Apelin peptide and its receptor APJ are directly implicated in various physiological processes ranging from cardiovascular homeostasis to immune signaling. Here, we show that apelin is a key player in hemostasis with an ability to inhibit thrombin- and collagen-mediated platelet activation. Mice lacking apelin displayed a shorter bleeding time and a prothrombotic profile. Their platelets exhibited increased adhesion and a reduced occlusion time in venules, and displayed a higher aggregation rate after their activation by thrombin compared with wild-type platelets. Consequently, human and mouse platelets express apelin and its receptor APJ. Apelin directly interferes with thrombin-mediated signaling pathways and platelet activation, secretion, and aggregation, but not with ADP and thromboxane A2-mediated pathways. IV apelin administration induced excessive bleeding and prevented thrombosis in mice. Taken together, these findings suggest that apelin and/or APJ agonists could potentially be useful adducts in antiplatelet therapies and may provide a promising perspective for patients who continue to display adverse thrombotic events with current antiplatelet therapies.

  13. Measles Virus Fusion Protein: Structure, Function and Inhibition

    PubMed Central

    Plattet, Philippe; Alves, Lisa; Herren, Michael; Aguilar, Hector C.

    2016-01-01

    Measles virus (MeV), a highly contagious member of the Paramyxoviridae family, causes measles in humans. The Paramyxoviridae family of negative single-stranded enveloped viruses includes several important human and animal pathogens, with MeV causing approximately 120,000 deaths annually. MeV and canine distemper virus (CDV)-mediated diseases can be prevented by vaccination. However, sub-optimal vaccine delivery continues to foster MeV outbreaks. Post-exposure prophylaxis with antivirals has been proposed as a novel strategy to complement vaccination programs by filling herd immunity gaps. Recent research has shown that membrane fusion induced by the morbillivirus glycoproteins is the first critical step for viral entry and infection, and determines cell pathology and disease outcome. Our molecular understanding of morbillivirus-associated membrane fusion has greatly progressed towards the feasibility to control this process by treating the fusion glycoprotein with inhibitory molecules. Current approaches to develop anti-membrane fusion drugs and our knowledge on drug resistance mechanisms strongly suggest that combined therapies will be a prerequisite. Thus, discovery of additional anti-fusion and/or anti-attachment protein small-molecule compounds may eventually translate into realistic therapeutic options. PMID:27110811

  14. The gastric HK-ATPase: structure, function, and inhibition

    PubMed Central

    Shin, Jai Moo; Munson, Keith; Vagin, Olga

    2011-01-01

    The gastric H,K-ATPase, a member of the P2-type ATPase family, is the integral membrane protein responsible for gastric acid secretion. It is an α,β-heterodimeric enzyme that exchanges cytoplasmic hydronium with extracellular potassium. The catalytic α subunit has ten transmembrane segments with a cluster of intramembranal carboxylic amino acids located in the middle of the transmembrane segments TM4, TM5,TM6, and TM8. Comparison to the known structure of the SERCA pump, mutagenesis, and molecular modeling has identified these as constituents of the ion binding domain. The β subunit has one transmembrane segment with N terminus in cytoplasmic region. The extracellular domain of the β subunit contains six or seven N-linked glycosylation sites. N-glycosylation is important for the enzyme assembly, maturation, and sorting. The enzyme pumps acid by a series of conformational changes from an E1 (ion site in) to an E2 (ion site out) configuration following binding of MgATP and phosphorylation. Several experimental observations support the hypothesis that expulsion of the proton at 160 mM (pH 0.8) results from movement of lysine 791 into the ion binding site in the E2P configuration. Potassium access from the lumen depends on activation of a K and Cl conductance via a KCNQ1/KCNE2 complex and Clic6. K movement through the luminal channel in E2P is proposed to displace the lysine along with dephosphorylation to return the enzyme to the E1 configuration. This enzyme is inhibited by the unique proton pump inhibitor class of drug, allowing therapy of acid-related diseases. PMID:18536934

  15. Chemical functionalization of graphene to augment stem cell osteogenesis and inhibit biofilm formation on polymer composites for orthopedic applications.

    PubMed

    Kumar, Sachin; Raj, Shammy; Kolanthai, Elayaraja; Sood, A K; Sampath, S; Chatterjee, Kaushik

    2015-02-11

    Toward designing the next generation of resorbable biomaterials for orthopedic applications, we studied poly(ε-caprolactone) (PCL) composites containing graphene. The role, if any, of the functionalization of graphene on mechanical properties, stem cell response, and biofilm formation was systematically evaluated. PCL composites of graphene oxide (GO), reduced GO (RGO), and amine-functionalized GO (AGO) were prepared at different filler contents (1%, 3%, and 5%). Although the addition of the nanoparticles to PCL markedly increased the storage modulus, this increase was largest for GO followed by AGO and RGO. In vitro cell studies revealed that the AGO and GO particles significantly increased human mesenchymal stem cell proliferation. AGO was most effective in augmenting stem cell osteogenesis leading to mineralization. Bacterial studies revealed that interaction with functionalized GO induced bacterial cell death because of membrane damage, which was further accentuated by amine groups in AGO. As a result, AGO composites were best at inhibiting biofilm formation. The synergistic effect of oxygen containing functional groups and amine groups on AGO imparts the optimal combination of improved modulus, favorable stem cell response, and biofilm inhibition in AGO-reinforced composites desired for orthopedic applications. This work elucidates the importance of chemical functionalization of graphene in polymer composites for biomedical applications.

  16. Lysosomal cysteine proteases: structure, function and inhibition of cathepsins.

    PubMed

    Roberts, Rebecca

    2005-12-01

    Lysosomal cysteine proteases, a subgroup of the cathepsin family, are critical for normal cellular functions such as general protein turnover, antigen processing and bone remodeling. In the past decade, the number of identified human cathepsins has more than doubled and their known role in several pathologies has expanded rapidly. Increased understanding of the structure and mechanism of this class of enzymes has brought on a new fervor in the design of small molecule inhibitors with the hope of producing specific, therapeutic drugs for diseases such as arthritis, allergy, multiple sclerosis, atherosclerosis, Alzheimer's disease and cancer.

  17. Synthesis of amine functionalized cellulose nanocrystals: optimization and characterization.

    PubMed

    Akhlaghi, Seyedeh Parinaz; Zaman, Masuduz; Mohammed, Nishil; Brinatti, César; Batmaz, Rasim; Berry, Richard; Loh, Watson; Tam, Kam Chiu

    2015-05-29

    A simple protocol was used to prepare amine functionalized cellulose nanocrystals (CNC-NH2). In the first step, epichlorohydrin (EPH) was reacted with ammonium hydroxide to produce 2-hydroxy-3-chloro propylamine (HCPA). In the next step, HCPA was grafted to CNC using the etherification reaction in an organic solution media. Various reaction parameters, such as time, temperature, and reactant molar ratio were performed to determine the optimal reaction conditions. The final product (CNC-NH2(T)) was dialyzed for a week. Further purification via centrifugation yielded the sediment (CNC-NH2(P)) and supernatant (POLY-NH2). The presence of amine groups on the surface of modified CNC was confirmed by FTIR and the amine content was determined by potentiometric titration and elemental analysis. A high amine content of 2.2 and 0.6 mmol amine/g was achieved for CNC-NH2(T) and CNC-NH2(P), respectively. Zeta potential measurements confirmed the charge reversal of amine CNC from positive to negative when the pH was increased from 3 to 10. The flocculation of amine functionalized CNC due to its interactions with a negatively charged surfactant namely, sodium dodecyl sulfate (SDS) was investigated at pH 4. It showed promising results for applications, such as in flocculation of fine dispersions in water treatment. This simple and versatile synthetic method to produce high amine content CNC can be used for further conjugation as required for various applications. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  18. Modelling the Pareto-optimal set using B-spline basis functions for continuous multi-objective optimization problems

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bhardwaj, Piyush; Dasgupta, Bhaskar; Deb, Kalyanmoy

    2014-07-01

    In the past few years, multi-objective optimization algorithms have been extensively applied in several fields including engineering design problems. A major reason is the advancement of evolutionary multi-objective optimization (EMO) algorithms that are able to find a set of non-dominated points spread on the respective Pareto-optimal front in a single simulation. Besides just finding a set of Pareto-optimal solutions, one is often interested in capturing knowledge about the variation of variable values over the Pareto-optimal front. Recent innovization approaches for knowledge discovery from Pareto-optimal solutions remain as a major activity in this direction. In this article, a different data-fitting approach for continuous parameterization of the Pareto-optimal front is presented. Cubic B-spline basis functions are used for fitting the data returned by an EMO procedure in a continuous variable space. No prior knowledge about the order in the data is assumed. An automatic procedure for detecting gaps in the Pareto-optimal front is also implemented. The algorithm takes points returned by the EMO as input and returns the control points of the B-spline manifold representing the Pareto-optimal set. Results for several standard and engineering, bi-objective and tri-objective optimization problems demonstrate the usefulness of the proposed procedure.

  19. Class 3 semaphorins control vascular morphogenesis by inhibiting integrin function.

    PubMed

    Serini, Guido; Valdembri, Donatella; Zanivan, Sara; Morterra, Giulia; Burkhardt, Constanze; Caccavari, Francesca; Zammataro, Luca; Primo, Luca; Tamagnone, Luca; Logan, Malcolm; Tessier-Lavigne, Marc; Taniguchi, Masahiko; Püschel, Andreas W; Bussolino, Federico

    2003-07-24

    The motility and morphogenesis of endothelial cells is controlled by spatio-temporally regulated activation of integrin adhesion receptors, and integrin activation is stimulated by major determinants of vascular remodelling. In order for endothelial cells to be responsive to changes in activator gradients, the adhesiveness of these cells to the extracellular matrix must be dynamic, and negative regulators of integrins could be required. Here we show that during vascular development and experimental angiogenesis, endothelial cells generate autocrine chemorepulsive signals of class 3 semaphorins (SEMA3 proteins) that localize at nascent adhesive sites in spreading endothelial cells. Disrupting endogenous SEMA3 function in endothelial cells stimulates integrin-mediated adhesion and migration to extracellular matrices, whereas exogenous SEMA3 proteins antagonize integrin activation. Misexpression of dominant negative SEMA3 receptors in chick embryo endothelial cells locks integrins in an active conformation, and severely impairs vascular remodelling. Sema3a null mice show vascular defects as well. Thus during angiogenesis endothelial SEMA3 proteins endow the vascular system with the plasticity required for its reshaping by controlling integrin function.

  20. Fibroblast growth factor-2 inhibits mineralization of osteoblast-like Saos-2 cells by inhibiting the functioning of matrix vesicles.

    PubMed

    Liu, Chao; Cui, Yazhou; Luan, Jing; Zhou, Xiaoyan; Liu, Zhenxing; Han, Jinxiang

    2014-02-01

    Fibroblast growth factor-2 (FGF2) inhibits osteoblast mineralization, but the mechanism by which it does so is not fully understood. Matrix vesicles (MVs) play an essential role in the initiation of mineralization, so the current study examined the effect of FGF2 on the functioning of MVs to investigate this mechanism. This study found that FGF2 significantly inhibited differentiation and mineralization of osteoblast-like Saos-2 cells, as indicated by down-regulation of mRNA expression of the osteogenic master regulator runt-related transcription factor 2 (Runx2), alkaline phosphatase (ALP), and collagen 1 alpha 1 (Colla1), and by decreasing the formation of bone nodules. MVs were isolated from Saos-2 cells cultured in osteogenic medium supplemented with and without FGF2 and their presence was verified using electron microscopy and Western blotting. FGF2 markedly reduced the ALP activity of and in vitro mineralization by MVs. These findings suggest that FGF2 inhibits osteoblast mineralization by limiting the capacity of MVs.

  1. Ethanol inhibits human bone cell proliferation and function in vitro

    SciTech Connect

    Friday, K.E.; Howard, G.A. )

    1991-06-01

    The direct effects of ethanol on human bone cell proliferation and function were studied in vitro. Normal human osteoblasts from trabecular bone chips were prepared by collagenase digestion. Exposure of these osteoblasts to ethanol in concentrations of 0.05% to 1% for 22 hours induced a dose-dependent reduction in bone cell DNA synthesis as assessed by incorporation of 3H-thymidine. After 72 hours of ethanol exposure in concentrations of 0.01% to 1%, protein synthesis as measured by 3H-proline incorporation into trichbroacetic acid (TCA)-precipitable material was reduced in a dose-dependent manner. Human bone cell protein concentrations and alkaline phosphatase total activity were significantly reduced after exposure to 1% ethanol for 72 hours, but not with lower concentrations of ethanol. This reduction in osteoblast proliferation and activity may partially explain the development of osteopenia in humans consuming excessive amounts of ethanol.

  2. Diterpenoids from Tetraclinis articulata that inhibit various human leukocyte functions.

    PubMed

    Barrero, Alejandro F; Quílez del Moral, José F; Lucas, Rut; Payá, Miguel; Akssira, Mohamed; Akaad, Said; Mellouki, Fouad

    2003-06-01

    Ten new compounds, eight of them pimarane derivatives (1-8), together with a menthane dimer (9) and a totarane diterpenoid (10), were isolated from the leaves and wood of Tetraclinis articulata. The structures of 1-10 were established by using spectroscopic techniques, including 2D NMR spectra. Pimaranes 1-5 were found to possess an unusual cis interannular union of the B and C rings, which, from a biogenetic perspective, could be derived from the hydration of a carbocation at C-8. Compounds 4-6 and a mixture of 7 and 11 modulated different human leukocyte functions at a concentration of 10 microM, mainly the degranulation process measured as myeloperoxidase release and, to a lesser extent, the superoxide production measured by chemiluminescence.

  3. A Gene Optimization Strategy that Enhances Production of Fully Functional P-Glycoprotein in Pichia pastoris

    PubMed Central

    Protasevich, Irina I.; Brouillette, Christie G.; Harrell, Patina M.; Hildebrandt, Ellen; Gasser, Brigitte; Mattanovich, Diethard; Ward, Andrew; Chang, Geoffrey; Urbatsch, Ina L.

    2011-01-01

    Background Structural and biochemical studies of mammalian membrane proteins remain hampered by inefficient production of pure protein. We explored codon optimization based on highly expressed Pichia pastoris genes to enhance co-translational folding and production of P-glycoprotein (Pgp), an ATP-dependent drug efflux pump involved in multidrug resistance of cancers. Methodology/Principal Findings Codon-optimized “Opti-Pgp” and wild-type Pgp, identical in primary protein sequence, were rigorously analyzed for differences in function or solution structure. Yeast expression levels and yield of purified protein from P. pastoris (∼130 mg per kg cells) were about three-fold higher for Opti-Pgp than for wild-type protein. Opti-Pgp conveyed full in vivo drug resistance against multiple anticancer and fungicidal drugs. ATP hydrolysis by purified Opti-Pgp was strongly stimulated ∼15-fold by verapamil and inhibited by cyclosporine A with binding constants of 4.2±2.2 µM and 1.1±0.26 µM, indistinguishable from wild-type Pgp. Maximum turnover number was 2.1±0.28 µmol/min/mg and was enhanced by 1.2-fold over wild-type Pgp, likely due to higher purity of Opti-Pgp preparations. Analysis of purified wild-type and Opti-Pgp by CD, DSC and limited proteolysis suggested similar secondary and ternary structure. Addition of lipid increased the thermal stability from Tm ∼40°C to 49°C, and the total unfolding enthalpy. The increase in folded state may account for the increase in drug-stimulated ATPase activity seen in presence of lipids. Conclusion The significantly higher yields of protein in the native folded state, higher purity and improved function establish the value of our gene optimization approach, and provide a basis to improve production of other membrane proteins. PMID:21826197

  4. Discovery and optimization of new benzofuran derivatives against p53-independent malignant cancer cells through inhibition of HIF-1 pathway.

    PubMed

    Yang, Ying-Rui; Wei, Jin-Lian; Mo, Xiao-Fei; Yuan, Zhen-Wei; Wang, Jia-Lin; Zhang, Chao; Xie, Yi-Yue; You, Qi-Dong; Sun, Hao-Peng

    2016-06-01

    p53-independent malignant cancer is still severe health problem of human beings. HIF-1 pathway is believed to play an important role in the survival and developing progress of such cancers. In the present study, with the aim to inhibit the proliferation of p53-independent malignant cells, we disclose the optimization of 6a, the starting compound which is discovered in the screening of in-house compound collection. The structure-activity relationship (SAR) is summarized. The most potent derivative 8d, inhibits the proliferation of both p53-null and p53-mutated cells through inhibition of HIF-1 pathway. Our findings here provide a new chemotype in designing potent anticancer agent especially against those p53-independent malignant tumors. Copyright © 2016. Published by Elsevier Ltd.

  5. Functional inhibition of mesenchymal stromal cells in acute myeloid leukemia.

    PubMed

    Geyh, S; Rodríguez-Paredes, M; Jäger, P; Khandanpour, C; Cadeddu, R-P; Gutekunst, J; Wilk, C M; Fenk, R; Zilkens, C; Hermsen, D; Germing, U; Kobbe, G; Lyko, F; Haas, R; Schroeder, T

    2016-03-01

    Hematopoietic insufficiency is the hallmark of acute myeloid leukemia (AML) and predisposes patients to life-threatening complications such as bleeding and infections. Addressing the contribution of mesenchymal stromal cells (MSC) to AML-induced hematopoietic failure we show that MSC from AML patients (n=64) exhibit significant growth deficiency and impaired osteogenic differentiation capacity. This was molecularly reflected by a specific methylation signature affecting pathways involved in cell differentiation, proliferation and skeletal development. In addition, we found distinct alterations of hematopoiesis-regulating factors such as Kit-ligand and Jagged1 accompanied by a significantly diminished ability to support CD34+ hematopoietic stem and progenitor cells in long-term culture-initiating cells (LTC-ICs) assays. This deficient osteogenic differentiation and insufficient stromal support was reversible and correlated with disease status as indicated by Osteocalcin serum levels and LTC-IC frequencies returning to normal values at remission. In line with this, cultivation of healthy MSC in conditioned medium from four AML cell lines resulted in decreased proliferation and osteogenic differentiation. Taken together, AML-derived MSC are molecularly and functionally altered and contribute to hematopoietic insufficiency. Inverse correlation with disease status and adoption of an AML-like phenotype after exposure to leukemic conditions suggests an instructive role of leukemic cells on bone marrow microenvironment.

  6. Adiponectin inhibits insulin function in primary trophoblasts by PPARα-mediated ceramide synthesis.

    PubMed

    Aye, Irving L M H; Gao, Xiaoli; Weintraub, Susan T; Jansson, Thomas; Powell, Theresa L

    2014-04-01

    Maternal adiponectin (ADN) levels are inversely correlated with birth weight, and ADN infusion in pregnant mice down-regulates placental nutrient transporters and decreases fetal growth. In contrast to the insulin-sensitizing effects in adipose tissue and muscle, ADN inhibits insulin signaling in the placenta. However, the molecular mechanisms involved are unknown. We hypothesized that ADN inhibits insulin signaling and insulin-stimulated amino acid transport in primary human trophoblasts by peroxisome proliferator-activated receptor-α (PPARα)-mediated ceramide synthesis. Primary human term trophoblast cells were treated with ADN and/or insulin. ADN increased the phosphorylation of p38 MAPK and PPARα. ADN inhibited insulin signaling and insulin-stimulated amino acid transport. This effect was dependent on PPARα, because activation of PPARα with an agonist (GW7647) inhibited insulin signaling and function, whereas PPARα-small interfering RNA reversed the effects of ADN on the insulin response. ADN increased ceramide synthase expression and stimulated ceramide production. C2-ceramide inhibited insulin signaling and function, whereas inhibition of ceramide synthase (with Fumonisin B1) reversed the effects of ADN on insulin signaling and amino acid transport. These findings are consistent with the model that maternal ADN limits fetal growth mediated by activation of placental PPARα and ceramide synthesis, which inhibits placental insulin signaling and amino acid transport, resulting in reduced fetal nutrient availability.

  7. Cortical organization of inhibition-related functions and modulation by psychopathology

    PubMed Central

    Warren, Stacie L.; Crocker, Laura D.; Spielberg, Jeffery M.; Engels, Anna S.; Banich, Marie T.; Sutton, Bradley P.; Miller, Gregory A.; Heller, Wendy

    2013-01-01

    Individual differences in inhibition-related functions have been implicated as risk factors for a broad range of psychopathology, including anxiety and depression. Delineating neural mechanisms of distinct inhibition-related functions may clarify their role in the development and maintenance of psychopathology. The present study tested the hypothesis that activity in common and distinct brain regions would be associated with an ecologically sensitive, self-report measure of inhibition and a laboratory performance measure of prepotent response inhibition. Results indicated that sub-regions of DLPFC distinguished measures of inhibition, whereas left inferior frontal gyrus and bilateral inferior parietal cortex were associated with both types of inhibition. Additionally, co-occurring anxiety and depression modulated neural activity in select brain regions associated with response inhibition. Results imply that specific combinations of anxiety and depression dimensions are associated with failure to implement top-down attentional control as reflected in inefficient recruitment of posterior DLPFC and increased activation in regions associated with threat (MTG) and worry (BA10). Present findings elucidate possible neural mechanisms of interference that could help explain executive control deficits in psychopathology. PMID:23781192

  8. Optimal myelin elongation relies on YAP activation by axonal growth and inhibition by Crb3/Hippo pathway

    PubMed Central

    Fernando, Ruani N.; Cotter, Laurent; Perrin-Tricaud, Claire; Berthelot, Jade; Bartolami, Sylvain; Pereira, Jorge A.; Gonzalez, Sergio; Suter, Ueli; Tricaud, Nicolas

    2016-01-01

    Fast nerve conduction relies on successive myelin segments that electrically isolate axons. Segment geometry—diameter and length—is critical for the optimization of nerve conduction and the molecular mechanisms allowing this optimized geometry are partially known. We show here that peripheral myelin elongation is dynamically regulated by stimulation of YAP (Yes-associated protein) transcription cofactor activity during axonal elongation and limited by inhibition of YAP activity via the Hippo pathway. YAP promotes myelin and non-myelin genes transcription while the polarity protein Crb3, localized at the tips of the myelin sheath, activates the Hippo pathway to temper YAP activity, therefore allowing for optimal myelin growth. Dystrophic Dy2j/2j mice mimicking human peripheral neuropathy with reduced internodal lengths have decreased nuclear YAP which, when corrected, leads to longer internodes. These data show a novel mechanism controlling myelin growth and nerve conduction, and provide a molecular ground for disease with short myelin segments. PMID:27435623

  9. Inhibition of viscous fluid fingering: A variational scheme for optimal flow rates

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Miranda, Jose; Dias, Eduardo; Alvarez-Lacalle, Enrique; Carvalho, Marcio

    2012-11-01

    Conventional viscous fingering flow in radial Hele-Shaw cells employs a constant injection rate, resulting in the emergence of branched interfacial shapes. The search for mechanisms to prevent the development of these bifurcated morphologies is relevant to a number of areas in science and technology. A challenging problem is how best to choose the pumping rate in order to restrain growth of interfacial amplitudes. We use an analytical variational scheme to look for the precise functional form of such an optimal flow rate. We find it increases linearly with time in a specific manner so that interface disturbances are minimized. Experiments and nonlinear numerical simulations support the effectiveness of this particularly simple, but not at all obvious, pattern controlling process. J.A.M., E.O.D. and M.S.C. thank CNPq/Brazil for financial support. E.A.L. acknowledges support from Secretaria de Estado de IDI Spain under project FIS2011-28820-C02-01.

  10. Optimization techniques in molecular structure and function elucidation.

    PubMed

    Sahinidis, Nikolaos V

    2009-12-01

    This paper discusses recent optimization approaches to the protein side-chain prediction problem, protein structural alignment, and molecular structure determination from X-ray diffraction measurements. The machinery employed to solve these problems has included algorithms from linear programming, dynamic programming, combinatorial optimization, and mixed-integer nonlinear programming. Many of these problems are purely continuous in nature. Yet, to this date, they have been approached mostly via combinatorial optimization algorithms that are applied to discrete approximations. The main purpose of the paper is to offer an introduction and motivate further systems approaches to these problems.

  11. Complexity reduction in the use of evolutionary algorithms to function optimization: a variable reduction strategy.

    PubMed

    Wu, Guohua; Pedrycz, Witold; Li, Haifeng; Qiu, Dishan; Ma, Manhao; Liu, Jin

    2013-01-01

    Discovering and utilizing problem domain knowledge is a promising direction towards improving the efficiency of evolutionary algorithms (EAs) when solving optimization problems. We propose a knowledge-based variable reduction strategy (VRS) that can be integrated into EAs to solve unconstrained and first-order derivative optimization functions more efficiently. VRS originates from the knowledge that, in an unconstrained and first-order derivative optimization function, the optimal solution locates in a local extreme point at which the partial derivative over each variable equals zero. Through this collective of partial derivative equations, some quantitative relations among different variables can be obtained. These variable relations have to be satisfied in the optimal solution. With the use of such relations, VRS could reduce the number of variables and shrink the solution space when using EAs to deal with the optimization function, thus improving the optimizing speed and quality. When we apply VRS to optimization problems, we just need to modify the calculation approach of the objective function. Therefore, practically, it can be integrated with any EA. In this study, VRS is combined with particle swarm optimization variants and tested on several benchmark optimization functions and a real-world optimization problem. Computational results and comparative study demonstrate the effectiveness of VRS.

  12. Sublethal doses of neonicotinoid imidacloprid can interact with honey bee chemosensory protein 1 (CSP1) and inhibit its function.

    PubMed

    Li, Hongliang; Tan, Jing; Song, Xinmi; Wu, Fan; Tang, Mingzhu; Hua, Qiyun; Zheng, Huoqing; Hu, Fuliang

    2017-04-29

    As a frequently used neonicotinoid insecticide, imidacloprid can impair the chemoreceptive behavior of honey bees even at sublethal doses, while the physiochemical mechanism has not been further revealed. Here, multiple fluorescence spectra, thermodynamic method, and molecular docking were used to study the interaction and the functional inhibition of imidacloprid to the recombinant CSP1 protein in Asian honey bee, Apis cerana. The results showed that the fluorescence intensity (λem = 332 nm) of CSP1 could be significantly quenched by imidacloprid in a dynamic mode. During the quenching process, ΔH > 0, ΔS > 0, indicating that the acting forces of imidacloprid with CSP1 are mainly hydrophobic interactions. Synchronous fluorescence showed that the fluorescence of CSP1 was mainly derived from tryptophan, and the hydrophobicity of tryptophan decreased with the increase of imidacloprid concentration. Molecular docking predicted the optimal pose and the amino acid composition of the binding process. Circular dichroism (CD) spectra showed that imidacloprid reduced the α-helix of CSP1 and caused the extension of the CSP1 peptide chain. In addition, the binding of CSP1 to floral scent β-ionone was inhibited by nearly 50% of the apparent association constant (KA) in the presence of 0.28-2.53 ng/bee of imidacloprid, and the inhibition rate of nearly 95% at 3.75 ng/bee of imidacloprid at sublethal dose level. This study initially revealed the molecular physiochemical mechanism that sublethal doses of neonicotinoid still interact and inhibit the physiological function of the honey bees' chemoreceptive system. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  13. Solving Nonlinear Optimization Problems of Real Functions in Complex Variables by Complex-Valued Iterative Methods.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Songchuan; Xia, Youshen

    2016-12-28

    Much research has been devoted to complex-variable optimization problems due to their engineering applications. However, the complex-valued optimization method for solving complex-variable optimization problems is still an active research area. This paper proposes two efficient complex-valued optimization methods for solving constrained nonlinear optimization problems of real functions in complex variables, respectively. One solves the complex-valued nonlinear programming problem with linear equality constraints. Another solves the complex-valued nonlinear programming problem with both linear equality constraints and an ℓ₁-norm constraint. Theoretically, we prove the global convergence of the proposed two complex-valued optimization algorithms under mild conditions. The proposed two algorithms can solve the complex-valued optimization problem completely in the complex domain and significantly extend existing complex-valued optimization algorithms. Numerical results further show that the proposed two algorithms have a faster speed than several conventional real-valued optimization algorithms.

  14. Research of trajectory optimization on feeding manipulator based on internal penalty function

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wei, Chunli

    2016-10-01

    This paper has discussed the problems of trajectory optimization of feeding manipulator based on penalty function. Has selected the types of feeding robot, which work on NC machining center of the flexible workshop, and created the mathematical model with penalty function, for the purpose not only to optimize its walking path to reduce the production cost, but also improve its safety and efficiency of production. It has been verified by theoretical analysis and practice, the path optimization method is feasible.

  15. Swarm algorithms with chaotic jumps for optimization of multimodal functions

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Krohling, Renato A.; Mendel, Eduardo; Campos, Mauro

    2011-11-01

    In this article, the use of some well-known versions of particle swarm optimization (PSO) namely the canonical PSO, the bare bones PSO (BBPSO) and the fully informed particle swarm (FIPS) is investigated on multimodal optimization problems. A hybrid approach which consists of swarm algorithms combined with a jump strategy in order to escape from local optima is developed and tested. The jump strategy is based on the chaotic logistic map. The hybrid algorithm was tested for all three versions of PSO and simulation results show that the addition of the jump strategy improves the performance of swarm algorithms for most of the investigated optimization problems. Comparison with the off-the-shelf PSO with local topology (l best model) has also been performed and indicates the superior performance of the standard PSO with chaotic jump over the standard both using local topology (l best model).

  16. SYNCHRONIZATION OF HETEROGENEOUS OSCILLATORS UNDER NETWORK MODIFICATIONS: PERTURBATION AND OPTIMIZATION OF THE SYNCHRONY ALIGNMENT FUNCTION.

    PubMed

    Taylor, Dane; Skardal, Per Sebastian; Sun, Jie

    2016-01-01

    Synchronization is central to many complex systems in engineering physics (e.g., the power-grid, Josephson junction circuits, and electro-chemical oscillators) and biology (e.g., neuronal, circadian, and cardiac rhythms). Despite these widespread applications-for which proper functionality depends sensitively on the extent of synchronization-there remains a lack of understanding for how systems can best evolve and adapt to enhance or inhibit synchronization. We study how network modifications affect the synchronization properties of network-coupled dynamical systems that have heterogeneous node dynamics (e.g., phase oscillators with non-identical frequencies), which is often the case for real-world systems. Our approach relies on a synchrony alignment function (SAF) that quantifies the interplay between heterogeneity of the network and of the oscillators and provides an objective measure for a system's ability to synchronize. We conduct a spectral perturbation analysis of the SAF for structural network modifications including the addition and removal of edges, which subsequently ranks the edges according to their importance to synchronization. Based on this analysis, we develop gradient-descent algorithms to efficiently solve optimization problems that aim to maximize phase synchronization via network modifications. We support these and other results with numerical experiments.

  17. SYNCHRONIZATION OF HETEROGENEOUS OSCILLATORS UNDER NETWORK MODIFICATIONS: PERTURBATION AND OPTIMIZATION OF THE SYNCHRONY ALIGNMENT FUNCTION

    PubMed Central

    Taylor, Dane; Skardal, Per Sebastian; Sun, Jie

    2016-01-01

    Synchronization is central to many complex systems in engineering physics (e.g., the power-grid, Josephson junction circuits, and electro-chemical oscillators) and biology (e.g., neuronal, circadian, and cardiac rhythms). Despite these widespread applications—for which proper functionality depends sensitively on the extent of synchronization—there remains a lack of understanding for how systems can best evolve and adapt to enhance or inhibit synchronization. We study how network modifications affect the synchronization properties of network-coupled dynamical systems that have heterogeneous node dynamics (e.g., phase oscillators with non-identical frequencies), which is often the case for real-world systems. Our approach relies on a synchrony alignment function (SAF) that quantifies the interplay between heterogeneity of the network and of the oscillators and provides an objective measure for a system’s ability to synchronize. We conduct a spectral perturbation analysis of the SAF for structural network modifications including the addition and removal of edges, which subsequently ranks the edges according to their importance to synchronization. Based on this analysis, we develop gradient-descent algorithms to efficiently solve optimization problems that aim to maximize phase synchronization via network modifications. We support these and other results with numerical experiments. PMID:27872501

  18. Tribbles 3 inhibits brown adipocyte differentiation and function by suppressing insulin signaling

    SciTech Connect

    Jeong, Ha-Won; Choi, Ran Hee; McClellan, Jamie L.; Piroli, Gerardo G.; Frizzell, Norma; Tseng, Yu-Hua; Goodyear, Laurie J.; Koh, Ho-Jin

    2016-02-19

    Recent studies have demonstrated that adult humans have substantial amounts of functioning brown adipose tissue (BAT). Since BAT has been implicated as an anti-obese and anti-diabetic tissue, it is important to understand the signaling molecules that regulate BAT function. There has been a link between insulin signaling and BAT metabolism as deletion or pharmaceutical inhibition of insulin signaling impairs BAT differentiation and function. Tribbles 3 (TRB3) is a pseudo kinase that has been shown to regulate metabolism and insulin signaling in multiple tissues but the role of TRB3 in BAT has not been studied. In this study, we found that TRB3 expression was present in BAT and overexpression of TRB3 in brown preadipocytes impaired differentiation and decreased expression of BAT markers. Furthermore, TRB3 overexpression resulted in significantly lower oxygen consumption rates for basal and proton leakage, indicating decreased BAT activity. Based on previous studies showing that deletion or pharmaceutical inhibition of insulin signaling impairs BAT differentiation and function, we assessed insulin signaling in brown preadipocytes and BAT in vivo. Overexpression of TRB3 in cells impaired insulin-stimulated IRS1 and Akt phosphorylation, whereas TRB3KO mice displayed improved IRS1 and Akt phosphorylation. Finally, deletion of IRS1 abolished the function of TRB3 to regulate BAT differentiation and metabolism. These data demonstrate that TRB3 inhibits insulin signaling in BAT, resulting in impaired differentiation and function. - Highlights: • TRB3 is expressed in brown adipose tissue and its expression is increased during differentiation. • Overexpression of TRB3 inhibits differentiation and its activity. • Overexpression of TRB3 in brown preadipocytes inhibits insulin signaling. • TRB3KO mice displays improved insulin signaling in brown adipose tissue. • Insulin signaling is required for the effects of TRB3 to regulate brown adipose tissue differentiation and

  19. Culture Conditions for Production of Biomass, Adenosine, and Cordycepin from Cordyceps sinensis CS1197: Optimization by Desirability Function Method

    PubMed Central

    Ghatnur, Shashidhar M.; Parvatam, Giridhar; Balaraman, Manohar

    2015-01-01

    Background: Cordyceps sinensis (CS) is a traditional Chinese medicine contains potent active metabolites such as nucleosides and polysaccharides. The submerged cultivation technique is studied for the large scale production of CS for biomass and metabolites production. Objective: To optimize culture conditions for large-scale production of CS1197 biomass and metabolites production. Materials and Methods: The CS1197 strain of CS was isolated from dead larvae of natural CS and the authenticity was assured by the presence of two major markers adenosine and cordycepin by high performance liquid chromatography and mass spectrometry. A three-level Box-Behnken design was employed to optimize process parameters culturing temperature, pH, and inoculum volume for the biomass yield, adenosine and cordycepin. The experimental results were regressed to a second-order polynomial equation by a multiple regression analysis for the prediction of biomass yield, adenosine and cordycepin production. Multiple responses were optimized based on desirability function method. Results: The desirability function suggested the process conditions temperature 28°C, pH 7 and inoculum volume 10% for optimal production of nutraceuticals in the biomass. The water extracts from dried CS1197 mycelia showed good inhibition for 2 diphenyl-1-picrylhydrazyl and 2,2-azinobis-(3-ethyl-benzo-thiazoline-6-sulfonic acid-free radicals. Conclusion: The result suggests that response surface methodology-desirability function coupled approach can successfully optimize the culture conditions for CS1197. SUMMARY Authentication of CS1197 strain by the presence of adenosine and cordycepin and culturing period was determined to be for 14 daysContent of nucleosides in natural CS was found higher than in cultured CS1197 myceliumBox-Behnken design to optimize critical cultural conditions: temperature, pH and inoculum volumeWater extract showed better antioxidant activity proving credible source of natural antioxidants

  20. The Structure of Executive Functions in Children: A Closer Examination of Inhibition, Shifting, and Updating

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    van der Ven, Sanne H. G.; Kroesbergen, Evelyn H.; Boom, Jan; Leseman, Paul P. M.

    2013-01-01

    An increasing number of studies has investigated the latent factor structure of executive functions. Some studies found a three-factor structure of inhibition, shifting, and updating, but others could not replicate this finding. We assumed that the task choices and scoring methods might be responsible for these contradictory findings. Therefore,…

  1. Design optimization of a radial functionally graded dental implant.

    PubMed

    Ichim, Paul I; Hu, Xiaozhi; Bazen, Jennifer J; Yi, Wei

    2016-01-01

    In this work, we use FEA to test the hypothesis that a low-modulus coating of a cylindrical zirconia dental implant would reduce the stresses in the peri-implant bone and we use design optimization and the rule of mixture to estimate the elastic modulus and the porosity of the coating that provides optimal stress shielding. We show that a low-modulus coating of a dental implant significantly reduces the maximum stresses in the peri-implant bone without affecting the average stresses thus creating a potentially favorable biomechanical environment. Our results suggest that a resilient coating is capable of reducing the maximum compressive and tensile stresses in the peri-implant bone by up to 50% and the average stresses in the peri-implant bone by up to 15%. We further show that a transitional gradient between the high-modulus core and the low-modulus coating is not necessary and for a considered zirconia/HA composite the optimal thickness of the coating is 100 µ with its optimal elastic at the lowest value considered of 45 GPa.

  2. Family Functioning and Maladaptive Schemas: The Moderating Effects of Optimism

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Buri, John R.; Gunty, Amy L.

    2008-01-01

    Authoritarian parenting is often shown to be associated with negative outcomes for children, including the development of maladaptive schemas. However, this is not the case for all children who experience Authoritarian parenting. Optimism is examined as a moderator in the relationship between Authoritarian parenting and maladaptive schemas that…

  3. Optimizing Cross-Sectional Prediction of Social Functioning in Youth Referred for Neuropsychological Testing

    PubMed Central

    Lerner, Matthew D.; Potthoff, Lauren M.; Hunter, Scott J.

    2015-01-01

    The current study aimed to establish a fine-grained, efficient characterization of the concurrent neuropsychological contributions to social functioning in neuropsychologically-referred youth. A secondary aim was to demonstrate a useful statistic approach for such investigations (Partial Least Squares Regression; PLSR), which is underutilized in this field. Forty-five participants (70 – 164 months; Mage = 110.89; 34 male) were recruited from a large neuropsychological assessment clinic. Participants completed subtests from the NEPSY-II focusing on neuropsychological constructs that have been linked to social functioning (affect decoding, social memory, motor skills, visuomotor skills, response inhibition, attention and set-shifting, and verbal comprehension). Mothers completed the BASC-2, from which Atypicality and Social Skills scales were analyzed. PLSR revealed that difficulty with social memory, sensorimotor integration, and the ability to attend to and accurately discriminate auditory stimuli combine to best predict atypical or “odd” behavior. In terms of social skills, two factors emerged. The first factor indicated that, counterintuitively, greater emotional perception, visuospatial perception, ability to attend to and accurately discriminate auditory stimuli, and understand instructions was related to poorer social skills. The second factor indicated that a pattern of better facial memory, and sensorimotor ability (execution & integration) characterized a distinct profile of greater social ability. PLSR results were compared to traditional OLS and Backwards Stepwise regression approaches to demonstrate utility. Results also suggested that these findings were consistent across age, gender, and diagnostic group, indicating common neuropsychological substrates of social functioning in this sample of referred youth. Overall, this study provides the first characterization of optimized combinations of neuropsychological variables in predicting social

  4. Optimizing cross-sectional prediction of social functioning in youth referred for neuropsychological testing.

    PubMed

    Lerner, Matthew D; Potthoff, Lauren M; Hunter, Scott J

    2015-01-01

    The current study aimed to establish a fine-grained, efficient characterization of the concurrent neuropsychological contributions to social functioning in neuropsychologically-referred youth. A secondary aim was to demonstrate a useful statistic approach for such investigations (Partial Least Squares Regression; PLSR), which is underutilized in this field. Forty-five participants (70 - 164 months; Mage = 110.89; 34 male) were recruited from a large neuropsychological assessment clinic. Participants completed subtests from the NEPSY-II focusing on neuropsychological constructs that have been linked to social functioning (affect decoding, social memory, motor skills, visuomotor skills, response inhibition, attention and set-shifting, and verbal comprehension). Mothers completed the BASC-2, from which Atypicality and Social Skills scales were analyzed. PLSR revealed that difficulty with social memory, sensorimotor integration, and the ability to attend to and accurately discriminate auditory stimuli combine to best predict atypical or "odd" behavior. In terms of social skills, two factors emerged. The first factor indicated that, counterintuitively, greater emotional perception, visuospatial perception, ability to attend to and accurately discriminate auditory stimuli, and understand instructions was related to poorer social skills. The second factor indicated that a pattern of better facial memory, and sensorimotor ability (execution & integration) characterized a distinct profile of greater social ability. PLSR results were compared to traditional OLS and Backwards Stepwise regression approaches to demonstrate utility. Results also suggested that these findings were consistent across age, gender, and diagnostic group, indicating common neuropsychological substrates of social functioning in this sample of referred youth. Overall, this study provides the first characterization of optimized combinations of neuropsychological variables in predicting social functioning

  5. Inhibition of phenotypic and functional maturation of dendritic cells by manassantin a.

    PubMed

    Kim, Jee Youn; Kang, Jong Soon; Kim, Hwan Mook; Kim, Young Kook; Lee, Hong Kyung; Song, Sukgil; Hong, Jin Tae; Kim, Youngsoo; Han, Sang-Bae

    2009-04-01

    Manassantin A (MSA) inhibits nitric oxide production by macrophages through the inhibition of NF-kappaB activation, but the effect of MSA on dendritic cells has not been elucidated yet. Here we investigated the inhibitory effects of MSA on immune functions of dendritic cells (DCs). MSA inhibited lipopolysaccharide (LPS)-induced phenotypic maturation of DCs, which was proved by the decreased expression of CD40, CD80, CD86, MHC-I, and MHC-II. MSA also inhibited functional maturation of DCs, that is, decreased the gene expression of IL-12, IL-1beta, TNF-alpha, and IFN-alpha/beta; enhanced antigen capture capacity of DCs; and impaired induction of allogenic T cell activation. As a mechanism of action, MSA inhibited LPS-induced activation of NF-kappaB, ERK, p38, and JNK, which played pivotal roles in toll-like receptor 4-mediated DC maturation. Collectively, these results suggested that MSA might be used for the treatment of DC-related immune diseases.

  6. Behavioral inhibition, maladaptive pain cognitions, and function in patients with chronic pain.

    PubMed

    Jensen, Mark P; Solé, Ester; Castarlenas, Elena; Racine, Mélanie; Roy, Rubén; Miró, Jordi; Cane, Douglas

    2017-07-26

    Trait behavioral inhibition represents a tendency to react with negative emotions - primarily worry - to cues which signal potential threats. This tendency has been hypothesized by a two-factor model of chronic pain to have direct effects on psychological and physical function in individuals with chronic pain, as well as to influence the associations between pain-related maladaptive cognitions and function. Our aim was to test these hypothesized associations in a sample of individuals who were being screened for possible interdisciplinary chronic pain treatment. Eighty-eight patients referred to an interdisciplinary chronic pain management program were administered measures of average pain intensity, trait behavioral inhibition, kinesiophobia, pain catastrophizing, depressive symptoms, and pain interference. We then performed two linear regression analyses to evaluate the direct effects of trait behavioral inhibition on depressive symptoms and pain interference and the extent to which behavioral inhibition moderated the associations between kinesiophobia and pain catastrophizing, and the criterion variables. In partial support of the study hypotheses, the results showed significant (and independent) direct effects of trait behavioral inhibition on depressive symptoms, and behavioral inhibition moderated the association between kinesiophobia and depression, such that there were stronger associations between kinesiophobia and depressive symptoms in those with higher dispositional sensitivity to fear-inducing stimuli. However, neither direct nor moderating effects of behavioral inhibition emerged in the prediction of pain interference. If replicated in additional studies, the findings would indicate that chronic pain treatments which target both reductions in maladaptive cognitions (to decrease the direct negative effects of these on depressive symptoms) and the individual's tendency to respond to pain with worry (as a way to buffer the potential effects of

  7. Selective Inhibition of Phosphoinositide 3-Kinase p110α Preserves Lymphocyte Function*

    PubMed Central

    So, Lomon; Yea, Sung Su; Oak, Jean S.; Lu, Mengrou; Manmadhan, Arun; Ke, Qiao Han; Janes, Matthew R.; Kessler, Linda V.; Kucharski, Jeff M.; Li, Lian-Sheng; Martin, Michael B.; Ren, Pingda; Jessen, Katti A.; Liu, Yi; Rommel, Christian; Fruman, David A.

    2013-01-01

    Class IA phosphoinositide 3-kinase (PI3K) is essential for clonal expansion, differentiation, and effector function of B and T lymphocytes. The p110δ catalytic isoform of PI3K is highly expressed in lymphocytes and plays a prominent role in B and T cell responses. Another class IA PI3K catalytic isoform, p110α, is a promising drug target in cancer but little is known about its function in lymphocytes. Here we used highly selective inhibitors to probe the function of p110α in lymphocyte responses in vitro and in vivo. p110α inhibition partially reduced B cell receptor (BCR)-dependent AKT activation and proliferation, and diminished survival supported by the cytokines BAFF and IL-4. Selective p110δ inhibition suppressed B cell responses much more strongly, yet maximal suppression was achieved by targeting multiple PI3K isoforms. In mouse and human T cells, inhibition of single class IA isoforms had little effect on proliferation, whereas pan-class I inhibition did suppress T cell expansion. In mice, selective p110α inhibition using the investigational agent MLN1117 (previously known as INK1117) did not disrupt the marginal zone B cell compartment and did not block T cell-dependent germinal center formation. In contrast, the selective p110δ inhibitor IC87114 strongly suppressed germinal center formation and reduced marginal zone B cell numbers, similar to a pan-class I inhibitor. These findings show that although acute p110α inhibition partially diminishes AKT activation, selective p110α inhibitors are likely to be less immunosuppressive in vivo compared with p110δ or pan-class I inhibitors. PMID:23275335

  8. TLR4 plays a crucial role in MSC-induced inhibition of NK cell function

    SciTech Connect

    Lu, Ying; Liu, Jin; Liu, Yang; Qin, Yaru; Luo, Qun; Wang, Quanli; Duan, Haifeng

    2015-08-21

    Mesenchymal stem cells (MSC) are a kind of stromal cell within the tumor microenvironment. In our research, MSC derived from acute myeloid leukemia patients' bone marrow (AML-MSC) and lung cancer tissues (LC-MSC) as well as normal bone marrow-derived MSC (BM-MSC) cultured in conditioned medium of HeLa cells were found to have higher expressions of Toll-like receptor (TLR4) mRNA compared with BM-MSC. The sorted TLR4-positive MSC (TLR4+ MSC) differed in cytokine (interleukin-6, interleukin-8, and monocyte chemoattractant protein-1) secretion from those of unsorted MSC. MSC was reported to inhibit natural killer (NK) cell proliferation and function. In this research, we confirmed that TLR4+ MSC aggravate this suppression. Furthermore, when TLR4 in the sorted cells were stimulated by LPS or following blocked by antibody, the suppression on NK cell proliferation and cytotoxicity were more intensive or recovered respectively. Compared to unsorted MSC, NKG2D receptor expression on NK cells were also inhibited by TLR4+ MSC. These findings suggest that activation of TLR4 pathway is important for TLR4+ MSC and MSC to obstruct anti-tumor immunity by inhibiting NK cell function, which may provide a potential stroma-targeted tumor therapy. - Highlights: • TLR4+ MSC inhibit NK cell proliferation in vivo and in vitro. • TLR4+ MSC inhibit NKG2D expression on NK cells and NK cell cytotoxicity. • The distinguished cytokine expression of TLR4+ MSC may contribute to the inhibition on NK cell function.

  9. Selective inhibition of phosphoinositide 3-kinase p110α preserves lymphocyte function.

    PubMed

    So, Lomon; Yea, Sung Su; Oak, Jean S; Lu, Mengrou; Manmadhan, Arun; Ke, Qiao Han; Janes, Matthew R; Kessler, Linda V; Kucharski, Jeff M; Li, Lian-Sheng; Martin, Michael B; Ren, Pingda; Jessen, Katti A; Liu, Yi; Rommel, Christian; Fruman, David A

    2013-02-22

    Class IA phosphoinositide 3-kinase (PI3K) is essential for clonal expansion, differentiation, and effector function of B and T lymphocytes. The p110δ catalytic isoform of PI3K is highly expressed in lymphocytes and plays a prominent role in B and T cell responses. Another class IA PI3K catalytic isoform, p110α, is a promising drug target in cancer but little is known about its function in lymphocytes. Here we used highly selective inhibitors to probe the function of p110α in lymphocyte responses in vitro and in vivo. p110α inhibition partially reduced B cell receptor (BCR)-dependent AKT activation and proliferation, and diminished survival supported by the cytokines BAFF and IL-4. Selective p110δ inhibition suppressed B cell responses much more strongly, yet maximal suppression was achieved by targeting multiple PI3K isoforms. In mouse and human T cells, inhibition of single class IA isoforms had little effect on proliferation, whereas pan-class I inhibition did suppress T cell expansion. In mice, selective p110α inhibition using the investigational agent MLN1117 (previously known as INK1117) did not disrupt the marginal zone B cell compartment and did not block T cell-dependent germinal center formation. In contrast, the selective p110δ inhibitor IC87114 strongly suppressed germinal center formation and reduced marginal zone B cell numbers, similar to a pan-class I inhibitor. These findings show that although acute p110α inhibition partially diminishes AKT activation, selective p110α inhibitors are likely to be less immunosuppressive in vivo compared with p110δ or pan-class I inhibitors.

  10. Optimal Experiment Design for Thermal Characterization of Functionally Graded Materials

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Cole, Kevin D.

    2003-01-01

    The purpose of the project was to investigate methods to accurately verify that designed , materials meet thermal specifications. The project involved heat transfer calculations and optimization studies, and no laboratory experiments were performed. One part of the research involved study of materials in which conduction heat transfer predominates. Results include techniques to choose among several experimental designs, and protocols for determining the optimum experimental conditions for determination of thermal properties. Metal foam materials were also studied in which both conduction and radiation heat transfer are present. Results of this work include procedures to optimize the design of experiments to accurately measure both conductive and radiative thermal properties. Detailed results in the form of three journal papers have been appended to this report.

  11. Continuous Control Artificial Potential Function Methods and Optimal Control

    DTIC Science & Technology

    2014-03-27

    and Optimal Control R. Andrew Fields, BSAE Civ, USAF Approved: //signed// 12 March 2014 Lt Col J. Agte , PhD, (Chairman) date //signed// 12 March 2014...like to thank my research advisor, Lt. Col. Jeremy Agte . Without the countless conversations and whiteboard drawings in Lt. Col. Agte’s office, this...LIMITATION OF ABSTRACT UU 18. NUMBER OF PAGES 84 19a. NAME OF RESPONSIBLE PERSON Lt. Col Jeremy Agte (ENY) REPORT U

  12. Optimization of the object function matrix to improve the reconstruction speed and quality in compressive holography

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Li, Jiansu; Wang, Zhao; Huang, Junhui; Liu, Yun; Gao, Jianmin

    2017-07-01

    The slow speed of compressive holography reconstruction limits its range of applications. The object function matrix has an equally spaced distribution in the reconstruction volume, which leads to the slow speed of compressive holography reconstruction. To improve the reconstruction speed and quality, the object function matrix can be optimized using a weighted spectral function. More specifically, the number and positions of the extrema of the weighted spectral function curve determine the object function matrix. To demonstrate the feasibility and validity of the optimization of the object function matrix in compressive holography reconstruction, we compared it with conventional compressive holography reconstruction using simulations and experiments on multilayer objects.

  13. An Improved Ensemble of Random Vector Functional Link Networks Based on Particle Swarm Optimization with Double Optimization Strategy.

    PubMed

    Ling, Qing-Hua; Song, Yu-Qing; Han, Fei; Yang, Dan; Huang, De-Shuang

    2016-01-01

    For ensemble learning, how to select and combine the candidate classifiers are two key issues which influence the performance of the ensemble system dramatically. Random vector functional link networks (RVFL) without direct input-to-output links is one of suitable base-classifiers for ensemble systems because of its fast learning speed, simple structure and good generalization performance. In this paper, to obtain a more compact ensemble system with improved convergence performance, an improved ensemble of RVFL based on attractive and repulsive particle swarm optimization (ARPSO) with double optimization strategy is proposed. In the proposed method, ARPSO is applied to select and combine the candidate RVFL. As for using ARPSO to select the optimal base RVFL, ARPSO considers both the convergence accuracy on the validation data and the diversity of the candidate ensemble system to build the RVFL ensembles. In the process of combining RVFL, the ensemble weights corresponding to the base RVFL are initialized by the minimum norm least-square method and then further optimized by ARPSO. Finally, a few redundant RVFL is pruned, and thus the more compact ensemble of RVFL is obtained. Moreover, in this paper, theoretical analysis and justification on how to prune the base classifiers on classification problem is presented, and a simple and practically feasible strategy for pruning redundant base classifiers on both classification and regression problems is proposed. Since the double optimization is performed on the basis of the single optimization, the ensemble of RVFL built by the proposed method outperforms that built by some single optimization methods. Experiment results on function approximation and classification problems verify that the proposed method could improve its convergence accuracy as well as reduce the complexity of the ensemble system.

  14. An Improved Ensemble of Random Vector Functional Link Networks Based on Particle Swarm Optimization with Double Optimization Strategy

    PubMed Central

    Ling, Qing-Hua; Song, Yu-Qing; Han, Fei; Yang, Dan; Huang, De-Shuang

    2016-01-01

    For ensemble learning, how to select and combine the candidate classifiers are two key issues which influence the performance of the ensemble system dramatically. Random vector functional link networks (RVFL) without direct input-to-output links is one of suitable base-classifiers for ensemble systems because of its fast learning speed, simple structure and good generalization performance. In this paper, to obtain a more compact ensemble system with improved convergence performance, an improved ensemble of RVFL based on attractive and repulsive particle swarm optimization (ARPSO) with double optimization strategy is proposed. In the proposed method, ARPSO is applied to select and combine the candidate RVFL. As for using ARPSO to select the optimal base RVFL, ARPSO considers both the convergence accuracy on the validation data and the diversity of the candidate ensemble system to build the RVFL ensembles. In the process of combining RVFL, the ensemble weights corresponding to the base RVFL are initialized by the minimum norm least-square method and then further optimized by ARPSO. Finally, a few redundant RVFL is pruned, and thus the more compact ensemble of RVFL is obtained. Moreover, in this paper, theoretical analysis and justification on how to prune the base classifiers on classification problem is presented, and a simple and practically feasible strategy for pruning redundant base classifiers on both classification and regression problems is proposed. Since the double optimization is performed on the basis of the single optimization, the ensemble of RVFL built by the proposed method outperforms that built by some single optimization methods. Experiment results on function approximation and classification problems verify that the proposed method could improve its convergence accuracy as well as reduce the complexity of the ensemble system. PMID:27835638

  15. Inhibition of Personally-Relevant Angry Faces Moderates the Effect of Empathy on Interpersonal Functioning

    PubMed Central

    Iacono, Vanessa; Ellenbogen, Mark A.; Wilson, Alexa L.; Desormeau, Philip; Nijjar, Rami

    2015-01-01

    While empathy is typically assumed to promote effective social interactions, it can sometimes be detrimental when it is unrestrained and overgeneralized. The present study explored whether cognitive inhibition would moderate the effect of empathy on social functioning. Eighty healthy young adults underwent two assessments six months apart. Participants’ ability to suppress interference from distracting emotional stimuli was assessed using a Negative Affective Priming Task that included both generic and personally-relevant (i.e., participants’ intimate partners) facial expressions of emotion. The UCLA Life Stress Interview and Empathy Quotient were administered to measure interpersonal functioning and empathy respectively. Multilevel modeling demonstrated that higher empathy was associated with worse concurrent interpersonal outcomes for individuals who showed weak inhibition of the personally-relevant depictions of anger. The effect of empathy on social functioning might be dependent on individuals’ ability to suppress interference from meaningful emotional distractors in their environment. PMID:25695426

  16. Prepulse Inhibition of the Acoustic Startle Reflex in High Functioning Autism

    PubMed Central

    Gruendler, Theo O. J.; Vogeley, Kai; Klosterkötter, Joachim; Kuhn, Jens

    2014-01-01

    Background High functioning autism is an autism spectrum disorder that is characterized by deficits in social interaction and communication as well as repetitive and restrictive behavior while intelligence and general cognitive functioning are preserved. According to the weak central coherence account, individuals with autism tend to process information detail-focused at the expense of global form. This processing bias might be reflected by deficits in sensorimotor gating, a mechanism that prevents overstimulation during the transformation of sensory input into motor action. Prepulse inhibition is an operational measure of sensorimotor gating, which indicates an extensive attenuation of the startle reflex that occurs when a startling pulse is preceded by a weaker stimulus, the prepulse. Methods In the present study, prepulse inhibition of acoustic startle was compared between 17 adults with high functioning autism and 17 sex-, age-, and intelligence-matched controls by means of electromyography. Results Results indicate that participants with high functioning autism exhibited significantly higher startle amplitudes than the control group. However, groups did not differ with regard to PPI or habituation of startle. Discussion These findings challenge the results of two previous studies that reported prepulse inhibition deficits in high-functioning autism and suggest that sensorimotor gating is only impaired in certain subgroups with autism spectrum disorder. PMID:24643088

  17. Pareto-Optimality, Efficiency Analysis and Empirical Production Functions.

    DTIC Science & Technology

    1983-05-01

    General, 120, 3, 253-281 (1957). 15. Fenchel , W., Convex Sets , Cones and Functions , Princeton University Press, Princeton, N.J. (1953). 16. Fbrsund, F...concave, piecewise linear function on DE" Proof: A necessary and sufficient condition for fr(x) to be concave is that its hypograph is a convex set (cf...34 production function . The work of R. Shephard [18], [19] under severe restrictions on the mathematical structure of production possibility sets and cost

  18. An indirect method for numerical optimization using the Kreisselmeir-Steinhauser function

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Wrenn, Gregory A.

    1989-01-01

    A technique is described for converting a constrained optimization problem into an unconstrained problem. The technique transforms one of more objective functions into reduced objective functions, which are analogous to goal constraints used in the goal programming method. These reduced objective functions are appended to the set of constraints and an envelope of the entire function set is computed using the Kreisselmeir-Steinhauser function. This envelope function is then searched for an unconstrained minimum. The technique may be categorized as a SUMT algorithm. Advantages of this approach are the use of unconstrained optimization methods to find a constrained minimum without the draw down factor typical of penalty function methods, and that the technique may be started from the feasible or infeasible design space. In multiobjective applications, the approach has the advantage of locating a compromise minimum design without the need to optimize for each individual objective function separately.

  19. A general optimization method applied to a vdW-DF functional for water

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Fritz, Michelle; Soler, Jose M.; Fernandez-Serra, Marivi

    In particularly delicate systems, like liquid water, ab initio exchange and correlation functionals are simply not accurate enough for many practical applications. In these cases, fitting the functional to reference data is a sensible alternative to empirical interatomic potentials. However, a global optimization requires functional forms that depend on many parameters and the usual trial and error strategy becomes cumbersome and suboptimal. We have developed a general and powerful optimization scheme called data projection onto parameter space (DPPS) and applied it to the optimization of a van der Waals density functional (vdW-DF) for water. In an arbitrarily large parameter space, DPPS solves for vector of unknown parameters for a given set of known data, and poorly sampled subspaces are determined by the physically-motivated functional shape of ab initio functionals using Bayes' theory. We present a new GGA exchange functional that has been optimized with the DPPS method for 1-body, 2-body, and 3-body energies of water systems and results from testing the performance of the optimized functional when applied to the calculation of ice cohesion energies and ab initio liquid water simulations. We found that our optimized functional improves the description of both liquid water and ice when compared to other versions of GGA exchange.

  20. An optimized B lymphocyte stimulator (BLyS) antagonist peptide inhibits the interaction of BLyS with BCMA.

    PubMed

    Tian, Yu; Zhu, Yan-Feng; Wu, Zhen; Feng, Jian-Nan; Li, Yan; Shen, Bei-Fen; Sun, Jian

    2013-04-01

    B lymphocyte stimulator (BLyS) antagonists are new therapeutic reagents for treating the autoimmune diseases. Peptibodies can inhibit the bioactivity of BLyS, the same as other BLyS antagonists: decoyed BLyS receptors and anti-BLyS antibodies. In this study, a new optimized BLyS antagonist peptide was designed according to our previous work by the computer-aided homology modeling. Competitive ELISA showed that the peptide at 100 μg/ml could inhibit 54 % of the BCMA-Fc binding to BLyS. To maintain its stability and spatial conformation, the peptide was fused to human IgG1 Fc to form a peptide-Fc fusion protein-a novel peptibody by gene engineering. ELISA indicated that the peptibody could bind with BLyS in dosage-dependent manner as BCMA-Fc did. This study highlights the possibility of designing and optimizing BLyS antagonist peptides with high biopotency by the computer-aided design. Thus, these peptides could neutralize BLyS activity and be potential antagonists to treat autoimmune diseases related with BLyS overexpression.

  1. Functional MRI and Response Inhibition in Children Exposed to Cocaine in utero

    PubMed Central

    Sheinkopf, Stephen J.; Lester, Barry M.; Sanes, Jerome N.; Eliassen, James C.; Hutchison, Emmette R.; Seifer, Ronald; LaGasse, Linda L.; Durston, Sarah; Casey, B. J.

    2009-01-01

    This study investigated the potential long-term effects of cocaine exposure on brain functioning using fMRI in school-aged children. The sample included 12 children with prenatal cocaine exposure and 12 non-exposed children (8–9 years old). Groups did not differ on IQ, socioeconomic status, or perinatal risk factors. A response inhibition task was administered during an fMRI scan using a 1.5-T MRI system. Task performance did not differentiate groups, but groups were differentiated by patterns of task-related brain activity. Cocaine-exposed children showed greater activation in the right inferior frontal cortex and caudate during response inhibition, whereas non-exposed children showed greater activations in temporal and occipital regions. These preliminary findings suggest that prenatal cocaine may affect the development of brain systems involved in the regulation of attention and response inhibition. PMID:19372696

  2. Synthetic, structural mimetics of the β-hairpin flap of HIV-1 protease inhibit enzyme function.

    PubMed

    Chauhan, Jay; Chen, Shen-En; Fenstermacher, Katherine J; Naser-Tavakolian, Aurash; Reingewertz, Tali; Salmo, Rosene; Lee, Christian; Williams, Emori; Raje, Mithun; Sundberg, Eric; DeStefano, Jeffrey J; Freire, Ernesto; Fletcher, Steven

    2015-11-01

    Small-molecule mimetics of the β-hairpin flap of HIV-1 protease (HIV-1 PR) were designed based on a 1,4-benzodiazepine scaffold as a strategy to interfere with the flap-flap protein-protein interaction, which functions as a gated mechanism to control access to the active site. Michaelis-Menten kinetics suggested our small-molecules are competitive inhibitors, which indicates the mode of inhibition is through binding the active site or sterically blocking access to the active site and preventing flap closure, as designed. More generally, a new bioactive scaffold for HIV-1PR inhibition has been discovered, with the most potent compound inhibiting the protease with a modest K(i) of 11 μM. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  3. OPTIMIZING POTENTIAL GREEN REPLACEMENT CHEMICALS – BALANCING FUNCTION AND RISK

    EPA Science Inventory

    An important focus of green chemistry is the design of new chemicals that are inherently less toxic than the ones they might replace, but still retain required functional properties. A variety of methods exist to measure or model both functional and toxicity surrogates that could...

  4. Inhibition of glycine receptor function of native neurons by aliphatic n-alcohols

    PubMed Central

    Tao, Liang; Ye, Jiang Hong

    2002-01-01

    The inhibitory effects of n-alcohols (methanol to dodecanol) on glycine-activated currents were studied in neurons freshly dissociated from the ventral tegmental area of neonatal rats using whole-cell patch-clamp recording technique.Ethanol enhanced and depressed glycine-activated currents in 35% and 45%, respectively, of neurons of ventral tegmental area of neonatal rats. In this report, we extended our focus of ethanol-induced inhibition of glycine currents to other straight-chain alcohols.Aliphatic n-alcohols, which have carbon numbers less than nine, suppressed glycine currents in 45% (71/158) of the neurons. All results from this study are obtained from the 45% of cells displaying inhibition; the other 55% of the neurons were not studied.Alcohol potency increased as the number of carbon atoms increased from one to five, and was at a maximal plateau from five to nine; alcohols with 10 or more carbons did not inhibit glycine-activated currents. Thus, a ‘cutoff' point in their potency for inhibition of glycine receptor function occurred at about decanol.A coapplication of dodecanol with ethanol eliminated the inhibition resulting from ethanol. Thus, dodecanol may bind to the receptor silently and compete with ethanol.These observations indicate that straight-chain n-alcohols exhibit a ‘cutoff' point in their potency for inhibition of the glycine receptor function between nine and 10 carbon atoms. The inability of longer alcohols to change the activation properties of the receptors may contribute to the cutoff effect. PMID:12055142

  5. An efficient cuckoo search algorithm for numerical function optimization

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ong, Pauline; Zainuddin, Zarita

    2013-04-01

    Cuckoo search algorithm which reproduces the breeding strategy of the best known brood parasitic bird, the cuckoos has demonstrated its superiority in obtaining the global solution for numerical optimization problems. However, the involvement of fixed step approach in its exploration and exploitation behavior might slow down the search process considerably. In this regards, an improved cuckoo search algorithm with adaptive step size adjustment is introduced and its feasibility on a variety of benchmarks is validated. The obtained results show that the proposed scheme outperforms the standard cuckoo search algorithm in terms of convergence characteristic while preserving the fascinating features of the original method.

  6. Optimizing the patient transport function at Mayo Clinic.

    PubMed

    Kuchera, Dustin; Rohleder, Thomas R

    2011-01-01

    In this article, we report on the implementation of a computerized scheduling tool to optimize staffing for patient transport at the Mayo Clinic. The tool was developed and implemented in Microsoft Excel and Visual Basic for Applications and includes an easy-to-use interface. The tool allows transport management to consider the trade-offs between patient waiting time and staffing levels. While improved staffing efficiency was a desire of the project, it was important that patient service quality was also maintained. The results show that staffing could be reduced while maintaining historical patient service levels.

  7. Configuring artificial neural networks to implement function optimization

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sundaram, Ramakrishnan

    2002-04-01

    Threshold binary networks of the discrete Hopfield-type lead to the efficient retrieval of the regularized least-squares (LS) solution in certain inverse problem formulations. Partitions of these networks are identified based on forms of representation of the data. The objective criterion is optimized using sequential and parallel updates on these partitions. The algorithms consist of minimizing a suboptimal objective criterion in the currently active partition. Once the local minima is attained, an inactive partition is chosen to continue the minimization. This strategy is especially effective when substantial data must be processed by resources which are constrained either in space or available bandwidth.

  8. A simple reliability-based topology optimization approach for continuum structures using a topology description function

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Liu, Jie; Wen, Guilin; Zhi Zuo, Hao; Qing, Qixiang

    2016-07-01

    The structural configuration obtained by deterministic topology optimization may represent a low reliability level and lead to a high failure rate. Therefore, it is necessary to take reliability into account for topology optimization. By integrating reliability analysis into topology optimization problems, a simple reliability-based topology optimization (RBTO) methodology for continuum structures is investigated in this article. The two-layer nesting involved in RBTO, which is time consuming, is decoupled by the use of a particular optimization procedure. A topology description function approach (TOTDF) and a first order reliability method are employed for topology optimization and reliability calculation, respectively. The problem of the non-smoothness inherent in TOTDF is dealt with using two different smoothed Heaviside functions and the corresponding topologies are compared. Numerical examples demonstrate the validity and efficiency of the proposed improved method. In-depth discussions are also presented on the influence of different structural reliability indices on the final layout.

  9. Alpha-1 antitrypsin inhibits RANKL-induced osteoclast formation and functions.

    PubMed

    Akbar, Mohammad Ahsanul; Nardo, David; Chen, Mong-Jen; Elshikha, Ahmed S; Ahamed, Rubina; Elsayed, Eslam M; Bigot, Claire; Holliday, Lexie Shannon; Song, Sihong

    2017-03-21

    Osteoporosis is a global public health problem affecting more than 200 million people worldwide. We previously showed that treatment with alpha-1 antitrypsin (AAT), a multifunctional protein with anti-inflammatory properties, mitigated bone loss in an ovariectomized mouse model. However, the underlying mechanisms of the protective effect of AAT on bone tissue are largely unknown. In this study, we investigated the effect of AAT on osteoclast formation and function in vitro. Our results showed that AAT dose-dependently inhibited the formation of RANKL (receptor activator of nuclear factor κB ligand) induced osteoclasts derived from mouse bone marrow macrophages/monocyte (BMM) lineage cells and the murine macrophage cell line, RAW 264.7 cells. In order to elucidate the possible mechanisms underlying this inhibition, we tested the effect of AAT on the gene expression of cell surface molecules, transcription factors, and cytokines associated with osteoclast formation. We showed that AAT inhibited M-CSF (macrophage colony-stimulating factor) induced cell surface RANK expression in osteoclast precursor cells. In addition, AAT inhibited RANKL-induced TNF-α production, cell surface CD9 expression, and dendritic cell-specific transmembrane protein (DC-STAMP) gene expression. Importantly, AAT treatment significantly inhibited osteoclast-associated mineral resorption. Together, these results uncovered new mechanisms for the protective effects of AAT and strongly support the notion that AAT has therapeutic potential for the treatment of osteoporosis.

  10. Optimization of functionalization conditions for protein analysis by AFM

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Arroyo-Hernández, María; Daza, Rafael; Pérez-Rigueiro, Jose; Elices, Manuel; Nieto-Márquez, Jorge; Guinea, Gustavo V.

    2014-10-01

    Activated vapor silanization (AVS) is used to functionalize silicon surfaces through deposition of amine-containing thin films. AVS combines vapor silanization and chemical vapor deposition techniques and allows the properties of the functionalized layers (thickness, amine concentration and topography) to be controlled by tuning the deposition conditions. An accurate characterization is performed to correlate the deposition conditions and functional-film properties. In particular, it is shown that smooth surfaces with a sufficient surface density of amine groups may be obtained with this technique. These surfaces are suitable for the study of proteins with atomic force microscopy.

  11. Pseudomonas aeruginosa protease IV degrades surfactant proteins and inhibits surfactant host defense and biophysical functions.

    PubMed

    Malloy, Jaret L; Veldhuizen, Ruud A W; Thibodeaux, Brett A; O'Callaghan, Richard J; Wright, Jo Rae

    2005-02-01

    Pulmonary surfactant has two distinct functions within the lung: reduction of surface tension at the air-liquid interface and participation in innate host defense. Both functions are dependent on surfactant-associated proteins. Pseudomonas aeruginosa is primarily responsible for respiratory dysfunction and death in cystic fibrosis patients and is also a leading pathogen in nosocomial pneumonia. P. aeruginosa secretes a number of proteases that contribute to its virulence. We hypothesized that P. aeruginosa protease IV degrades surfactant proteins and results in a reduction in pulmonary surfactant host defense and biophysical functions. Protease IV was isolated from cultured supernatant of P. aeruginosa by gel chromatography. Incubation of cell-free bronchoalveolar lavage fluid with protease IV resulted in degradation of surfactant proteins (SP)-A, -D, and -B. SPs were degraded in a time- and dose-dependent fashion by protease IV, and degradation was inhibited by the trypsin-like serine protease inhibitor Nalpha-p-tosyl-L-lysine-chloromethyl ketone (TLCK). Degradation by protease IV inhibited SP-A- and SP-D-mediated bacterial aggregation and uptake by macrophages. Surfactant treated with protease IV was unable to reduce surface tension as effectively as untreated surfactant, and this effect was inhibited by TLCK. We speculate that protease IV may be an important contributing factor to the development and propagation of acute lung injury associated with P. aeruginosa via loss of surfactant function within the lung.

  12. Chitooligosaccharide Inhibits Scar Formation and Enhances Functional Recovery in a Mouse Model of Sciatic Nerve Injury.

    PubMed

    Hou, Hongping; Zhang, Lihai; Ye, Zuguang; Li, Jianrong; Lian, Zijian; Chen, Chao; He, Rong; Peng, Bo; Xu, Qihua; Zhang, Guangping; Gan, Wenbiao; Tang, Peifu

    2016-05-01

    Chitooligosaccharide (COS) has been shown to induce fibroblast apoptosis, indicating that it could be used as a material to inhibit scar formation. In the present study, we used a mouse model of sciatic nerve injury (SNI) to determine the role of COS in scar inhibition and functional recovery. The animals were divided into three groups: SNI, SNI + vehicle, and SNI + COS group. We performed a series of functional and histological examinations at ctrl, 0 min, 14 days, and 42 days, including behavioral recovery, percentage of regenerating axons, degree of scar formation, vascular changes, type I and type III collagen ratio, and percentage of demyelinated axons. The SNI + COS group exhibited better recovery of sensory and motor function and less scar formation. Two-photon microscopy showed that the percentage of regenerating axons was highest in the SNI + COS group at 14 and 42 days. Our results suggested that COS can inhibit scar formation and enhance functional recovery by inducing fibroblast death, altering the proportion of different vascular diameters, changing the ratio of type I/type III collagen, and reducing the percentage of demyelinated axons. COS might be a useful drug in the treatment of SNI to reduce scar formation, but additional research is required to clarify the relevant molecular pathways.

  13. Multi-objective Optimization of Geometric Dimensions and Material Composition of Functionally Graded Components

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Vel, Senthil S.; Goupee, Andrew J.

    2008-02-01

    In this paper, we study the two-dimensional volume fraction optimization of a metal/metal functionally graded material active cooling component. The plane stress transient thermoelastic behavior of the component is analyzed using the element-free Galerkin method. A multi-objective genetic algorithm optimization procedure is used to determine the optimal volume fraction distribution and shape parameters that will minimize multiple objectives subject to nonlinear constraints.

  14. Decursin inhibits vasculogenesis in early tumor progression by suppression of endothelial progenitor cell differentiation and function.

    PubMed

    Jung, Seok Yun; Choi, Jin Hwa; Kwon, Sang-Mo; Masuda, Haruchika; Asahara, Takayuki; Lee, You-Mie

    2012-05-01

    Endothelial progenitor cells (EPCs) contribute to the tumor vasculature during tumor progression. Decursin isolated from the herb Angelica gigas is known to possess potent anti-inflammatory activities. Recently, we reported that decursin is a novel candidate for an angiogenesis inhibitor [Jung et al., 2009]. In this study, we investigated whether decursin regulates EPC differentiation and function to inhibit tumor vasculogenesis. We isolated AC133+ cells from human cord blood and decursin significantly decreased the number of EPC colony forming units of human cord blood-derived AC133+ cells that produce functional EPC progenies. Decursin dose-dependently decreased the cell number of EPC committing cells as demonstrated by EPC expansion studies. Decursin inhibited EPC differentiation from progenitor cells into spindle-shaped EPC colonies. Additionally, decursin inhibited proliferation and migration of early EPCs isolated from mouse bone marrow. Furthermore, decursin suppressed expression of angiopoietin-2, angiopoietin receptor Tie-2, Flk-1 (vascular endothelial growth factor receptor-2), and endothelial nitric oxide synthase in mouse BM derived EPCs in a dose-dependent manner. Decursin suppressed tube formation ability of EPCs in collaboration with HUVEC. Decursin (4 mg/kg) inhibited tumor-induced mobilization of circulating EPCs (CD34 + /VEGFR-2+ cells) from bone marrow and early incorporation of Dil-Ac-LDL-labeled or green fluorescent protein (GFP)+ EPCs into neovessels of xenograft Lewis lung carcinoma tumors in wild-type- or bone-marrow-transplanted mice. Accordingly, decursin attenuated EPC-derived endothelial cells in neovessels of Lewis lung carcinoma tumor masses grown in mice. Together, decursin likely affects EPC differentiation and function, thereby inhibiting tumor vasculogenesis in early tumorigenesis. Copyright © 2012 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  15. Coumestan inhibits radical-induced oxidation of DNA: is hydroxyl a necessary functional group?

    PubMed

    Xi, Gao-Lei; Liu, Zai-Qun

    2014-06-18

    Coumestan is a natural tetracycle with a C═C bond shared by a coumarin moiety and a benzofuran moiety. In addition to the function of the hydroxyl group on the antioxidant activity of coumestan, it is worth exploring the influence of the oxygen-abundant scaffold on the antioxidant activity as well. In this work, seven coumestans containing electron-withdrawing and electron-donating groups were synthesized to evaluate the abilities to trap 2,2'-azinobis(3-ethylbenzothiazoline-6-sulfonate) cationic radical (ABTS(•+)), 2,2'-diphenyl-1-picrylhydrazyl radical (DPPH), and galvinoxyl radical, respectively, and to inhibit the oxidations of DNA mediated by (•)OH, Cu(2+)/glutathione (GSH), and 2,2'-azobis(2-amidinopropane hydrochloride) (AAPH), respectively. It was found that all of the coumestans used herein can quench the aforementioned radicals and can inhibit (•)OH-, Cu(2+)/GSH-, and AAPH-induced oxidations of DNA. In particular, substituent-free coumestan exhibits higher ability to quench DPPH and to inhibit AAPH-induced oxidation of DNA than Trolox. In addition, nonsubstituted coumestan shows a similar ability to inhibit (•)OH- and Cu(2+)/GSH-induced oxidations of DNA relative to that of Trolox. The antioxidant effectiveness of the coumestan can be attributed to the lactone in the coumarin moiety and, therefore, a hydroxyl group may not be a necessary functional group for coumestan to be an antioxidant.

  16. Tussilagone inhibits dendritic cell functions via induction of heme oxygenase-1.

    PubMed

    Park, Yunsoo; Ryu, Hwa Sun; Lee, Hong Kyung; Kim, Ji Sung; Yun, Jieun; Kang, Jong Soon; Hwang, Bang Yeon; Hong, Jin Tae; Kim, Youngsoo; Han, Sang-Bae

    2014-10-01

    Sesquiterpenoid tussilagone (TUS) has a variety of pharmacological activities, such as anti-oxidant, anti-cancer, and anti-inflammatory activities. In this study, we investigated the effects of TUS on dendritic cell (DC) functions and the underlying mechanisms. TUS inhibited lipopolysaccharide (LPS)-induced activation of DCs, as shown by decrease in surface molecule expression, cytokine production, cell migration, and allo-T cell activation. In addition, TUS inhibited LPS-induced activation of NF-κB, MAPKs, and IRF-3 signalings in DCs, although it did not directly affect kinase activities of IRAK1/4, TAK1, and IKK, which suggests that TUS might indirectly inhibit TLR signaling in DCs. As a critical mechanism, we showed that TUS activated heme oxygenase-1 (HO-1), which degrades heme to immunosuppressive products, such as carbon monoxide and bilirubin. HO-1 inhibitor reversed the inhibitory activity of TUS in DCs. In conclusion, this study suggests that TUS inhibits DC function through the induction of HO-1.

  17. Functional lateralization of temporoparietal junction - imitation inhibition, visual perspective-taking and theory of mind.

    PubMed

    Santiesteban, Idalmis; Banissy, Michael J; Catmur, Caroline; Bird, Geoffrey

    2015-10-01

    Although neuroimaging studies have consistently identified the temporoparietal junction (TPJ) as a key brain region involved in social cognition, the literature is far from consistent with respect to lateralization of function. For example, during theory-of-mind tasks bilateral TPJ activation is found in some studies but only right hemisphere activation in others. Visual perspective-taking and imitation inhibition, which have been argued to recruit the same socio-cognitive processes as theory of mind, are associated with unilateral activation of either left TPJ (perspective taking) or right TPJ (imitation inhibition). The present study investigated the functional lateralization of TPJ involvement in the above three socio-cognitive abilities using transcranial direct current stimulation. Three groups of healthy adults received anodal stimulation over right TPJ, left TPJ or the occipital cortex prior to performing three tasks (imitation inhibition, visual perspective-taking and theory of mind). In contrast to the extant neuroimaging literature, our results suggest bilateral TPJ involvement in imitation inhibition and visual perspective-taking, while no effect of anodal stimulation was observed on theory of mind. The discrepancy between these findings and those obtained using neuroimaging highlight the efficacy of neurostimulation as a complementary methodological tool in cognitive neuroscience.

  18. The fungicide Pristine® inhibits mitochondrial function in vitro but not flight metabolic rates in honey bees

    USDA-ARS?s Scientific Manuscript database

    Honey bees and other pollinators are exposed to fungicides that act by inhibiting mitochondrial function. Here we test whether a common fungicide (Pristine®) inhibits the function of mitochondria of honeybees, and whether consumption of ecologically-realistic concentrations can cause negative eff...

  19. The Role of Inhibition in Age-related Off-Topic Verbosity: Not Access but Deletion and Restraint Functions

    PubMed Central

    Yin, Shufei; Peng, Huamao

    2016-01-01

    The speech of older adults is commonly described as verbose and off-topic, which is thought to influence their social communication. This study investigated the role of inhibition in age-related off-topic verbosity (OTV). Inhibition consists of three functions: access, deletion, and restraint. The access function is responsible for preventing irrelevant information from accessing the attention center (pre-mechanism of inhibition); The deletion function is responsible for deleting previously relevant but currently irrelevant information from working memory, and the restraint function is responsible for restraining strong but inappropriate responses (post-mechanisms of inhibition). A referential communication task was used to determine whether OTV was influenced by the pre-mechanism of inhibition. A self-involved event interview task was used to investigate the effect of the post-mechanisms of inhibition on OTV. Results showed that the OTV of the elderly participants was associated with an age-related decline in the post-mechanisms of inhibition, while the OTV exhibited by young adults was most likely due to deficits in the pre-mechanism function of inhibition. This research contributed to fill gaps in the existing knowledge about the potential relationship between specific functions of inhibition and age-related OTV. PMID:27199793

  20. miR-454 functions as an oncogene by inhibiting CHD5 in hepatocellular carcinoma

    PubMed Central

    Sun, Lei; Yao, Hong; Lu, Baoling; Zhu, Liying

    2015-01-01

    Previous studies showed that miR-454 acted as an oncogene or tumor suppressor in cancer. However, its function in HCC remains unknown. In this study, we found that miR-454 expression was upregulated in HCC cell lines and tissues. Knockdown of miR-454 inhibited HCC cell proliferation and invasion and epithelial mesenchymal transition (EMT), whereas overexpression of miR-454 promoted HCC cell proliferation and invasion and EMT. Furthermore, we identified the CHD5 as a direct target of miR-454. CHD5 was downregulated in HCC tissues and cell lines and the expression level of CHD5 was inversely correlated with the expression of miR-454 in HCC tissues. In addition, knockdown of miR-454 inhibited the growth of HepG2-engrafted tumors in vivo. Taken together, these results indicated that miR-454 functioned as an oncogene in HCC. PMID:26287602

  1. Tailored SWCNT functionalization optimized for compatibility with epoxy matrices

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Martinez-Rubi, Y.; Gonzalez-Dominguez, J. M.; Ansón-Casaos, A.; Kingston, C. T.; Daroszewska, M.; Barnes, M.; Hubert, P.; Cattin, C.; Martinez, M. T.; Simard, B.

    2012-07-01

    We have modified single walled carbon nanotubes (SWCNTs) with well defined matrix-based architectures to improve interface interaction in SWCNT/epoxy composites. The hardener and two pre-synthesized oligomers containing epoxy and hardener moieties were covalently attached to the SWCNT walls by in situ diazonium or carboxylic coupling reactions. In this way, SWCNTs bearing amine or epoxide-terminated fragments of different molecular weights, which resemble the chemical structure of the cured resin, were synthesized. A combination of characterization techniques such as Raman and infrared absorption (FTIR) spectroscopy, elemental analysis and coupled thermogravimetry-FTIR spectroscopy were used to identify both the functional groups and degree of functionalization of SWCNTs synthesized by the laser ablation and arc-discharge methods. Depending on the type of reaction employed for the chemical functionalization and the molecular weight of the attached fragment, it was possible to control the degree of functionalization and the electronic properties of the functionalized SWCNTs. Improved dispersion of SWCNTs in the epoxy matrix was achieved by direct integration without using solvents, as observed from optical microscopy and rheology measurements of the SWCNT/epoxy mixtures. Composite materials using these fillers are expected to exhibit improved properties while preserving the thermosetting architecture.

  2. Cost benefit theory and optimal design of gene regulation functions

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kalisky, Tomer; Dekel, Erez; Alon, Uri

    2007-12-01

    Cells respond to the environment by regulating the expression of genes according to environmental signals. The relation between the input signal level and the expression of the gene is called the gene regulation function. It is of interest to understand the shape of a gene regulation function in terms of the environment in which it has evolved and the basic constraints of biological systems. Here we address this by presenting a cost-benefit theory for gene regulation functions that takes into account temporally varying inputs in the environment and stochastic noise in the biological components. We apply this theory to the well-studied lac operon of E. coli. The present theory explains the shape of this regulation function in terms of temporal variation of the input signals, and of minimizing the deleterious effect of cell-cell variability in regulatory protein levels. We also apply the theory to understand the evolutionary tradeoffs in setting the number of regulatory proteins and for selection of feed-forward loops in genetic circuits. The present cost-benefit theory can be used to understand the shape of other gene regulatory functions in terms of environment and noise constraints.

  3. Optimization and inhibition of the adherent ability of Plasmodium falciparum-infected erythrocytes.

    PubMed

    Smith, H; Crandall, I; Prudhomme, J; Sherman, I W

    1992-01-01

    The vast majority of the 1-2 million malaria associated deaths that occur each year are due to anemia and cerebral malaria (the attachment of erythrocytes containing mature forms of Plasmodium falciparum to the endothelial cells that line the vascular beds of the brain). A "model system" for the study of cerebral malaria employs amelanotic melanoma cells as the "target" cells in an in vitro cytoadherence assay. Using this model system we determined that the optimum pH for adherence is 6.6 to 6.8, that high concentrations of Ca2+ (50mM) result in increased levels of binding, and that the type of buffer used influences adherence (Bis Tris > MOPS > HEPES > PIPES). We also observed that the ability of infected erythrocytes to cytoadhere varied from (erythrocyte) donor to donor. We have produced murine monoclonal antibodies against P. falciparum-infected red cells which recognize modified forms of human band 3; these inhibit the adherence of infected erythrocytes to melanoma cells in a dose-responsive fashion. Antimalarials (chloroquine, quinacrine, mefloquine, artemisinin), on the other hand, affected adherence in an indirect fashion i.e. since cytoadherence is due, in part, to the presence of knobs on the surface of the infected erythrocyte, and knob formation is dependent on intracellular parasite growth, when plasmodial development is inhibited so is knob production, and consequently adherence is ablated.

  4. Clarifying the factors that undermine behavioral inhibition system functioning in psychopathy.

    PubMed

    Baskin-Sommers, Arielle R; Wallace, John F; MacCoon, Donal G; Curtin, John J; Newman, Joseph P

    2010-10-01

    Psychopathic individuals are generally unresponsive to motivational and emotional cues that facilitate behavioral regulation. A putative mechanism for this deficiency is Gray’s (1981) behavioral inhibition system (BIS). To evaluate the association between psychopathy and BIS functioning, we administered a laboratory-based assessment of BIS functioning to a group of psychopathic offenders assessed with the Psychopathy Checklist–Revised (PCL–R; Hare, 2003). In addition, we tested the hypothesis that the effects of working memory load on BIS functioning would interact differentially with the PCL–R factors. Replicating previous results, psychopathic offenders were less sensitive to BIS-related cues than controls. As predicted, working memory load interacted with Factor 2 (antisocial/impulsive), with higher scores predicting weaker BIS functioning under high-load though not low-load conditions. Results suggest new insights concerning the relationship among working memory, reward sensitivity, and BIS functioning in psychopathy.

  5. A novel dRYBP-SCF complex functions to inhibit apoptosis in Drosophila.

    PubMed

    Fereres, Sol; Simón, Rocío; Busturia, Ana

    2013-12-01

    A balanced response to intrinsic and extrinsic apoptotic signals is crucial to support homeostatic development and animal survival. Regulation of activation and inhibition of apoptotic pathways involves diverse mechanisms including protein ubiquitylation to control expression levels of apoptotic factors. Here we report that drosophila Ring and YY1 Binding Protein (dRYBP) protein interacts both genetically and biochemically with the E3 ubiquitin ligase SKPA, dCULLIN, F-box (SCF) complex to synergistically inhibit apoptosis in Drosophila. Further, we show that the loss of skpA function activates the intrinsic pathway of apoptosis and down-regulates the levels of expression of the anti-apoptotic DIAP1 protein. Accordingly, the apoptosis induced by inactivation of skpA and dRYBP is rescued by loss of function of the pro-apoptotic gene reaper and overexpression of DIAP1. Of interest, we also find that high levels of SKPA protein rescue the wing phenotype induced by overexpression of Reaper protein. Finally, we demonstrate that overexpression of SKPA inhibits both developmental and radiation-induced apoptosis. We propose that the function of the dRYBP-SCF complex in the inhibition of apoptosis might possibly be to control the levels of the pro-apoptotic and anti-apoptotic proteins most likely by promoting their ubiquitylation and consequently, proteasomal degradation. Given the evolutionary conservation of the dRYBP and the SCF proteins, our results suggest that their mammalian homologs may function in balancing cell survival versus cell death during normal and pathological development.

  6. A new optimal sliding mode controller design using scalar sign function.

    PubMed

    Singla, Mithun; Shieh, Leang-San; Song, Gangbing; Xie, Linbo; Zhang, Yongpeng

    2014-03-01

    This paper presents a new optimal sliding mode controller using the scalar sign function method. A smooth, continuous-time scalar sign function is used to replace the discontinuous switching function in the design of a sliding mode controller. The proposed sliding mode controller is designed using an optimal Linear Quadratic Regulator (LQR) approach. The sliding surface of the system is designed using stable eigenvectors and the scalar sign function. Controller simulations are compared with another existing optimal sliding mode controller. To test the effectiveness of the proposed controller, the controller is implemented on an aluminum beam with piezoceramic sensor and actuator for vibration control. This paper includes the control design and stability analysis of the new optimal sliding mode controller, followed by simulation and experimental results. The simulation and experimental results show that the proposed approach is very effective. © 2013 ISA. Published by Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  7. Rapid detection of Aβ aggregation and inhibition by dual functions of gold nanoplasmic particles: catalytic activator and optical reporter.

    PubMed

    Choi, Inhee; Lee, Luke P

    2013-07-23

    One of the primary pathological hallmarks of Alzheimer's diseases (AD) is amyloid-β (Aβ) aggregation and its extracellular accumulation. However, current in vitro Aβ aggregation assays require time-consuming and labor-intensive steps, which delay the process of drug discovery and understanding the mechanism of Aβ induced neurotoxicity. Here, we propose a rapid detection method for studying Aβ aggregation and inhibition under an optimized acidic perturbation condition by dual functions of gold nanoplasmonic particles (GNPs): (1) catalytic activator and (2) optical reporter. Because of roles of GNPs as effective nucleation sites for fast-catalyzing Aβ aggregation and colorimetric optical reporters for tracking Aβ aggregation, we accomplished the fast aggregation assay in less than 1 min by the naked eyes. Our detection method is based on spontaneous clustering of unconjugated (unmodified) GNPs along with the aggregated Aβ network under an aggregation-promoting condition. As a proof-of-concept demonstration, we employed the acidic perturbation permitting rapid cooperative assemblies of GNPs and Aβ peptides via their surface charge modulation. Under the optimized acidic perturbation condition around pH 2 to 3, we characterized the concentration-dependent colorimetric responses for aggregation at physiologically relevant Aβ concentration levels (from 100 μM to 10 nM). We also demonstrated the GNP/acidic condition-based rapid inhibition assay of Aβ aggregation by using well-known binding reagents such as antibody and serum albumin. The proposed methodology can be a powerful alternative method for screening drugs for AD as well as studying molecular biophysics of protein aggregations, and further extended to explore other protein conformational diseases such as neurodegenerative disease.

  8. APP modulates KCC2 expression and function in hippocampal GABAergic inhibition.

    PubMed

    Chen, Ming; Wang, Jinzhao; Jiang, Jinxiang; Zheng, Xingzhi; Justice, Nicholas J; Wang, Kun; Ran, Xiangqian; Li, Yi; Huo, Qingwei; Zhang, Jiajia; Li, Hongmei; Lu, Nannan; Wang, Ying; Zheng, Hui; Long, Cheng; Yang, Li

    2017-01-05

    Amyloid precursor protein (APP) is enriched at the synapse, but its synaptic function is still poorly understood. We previously showed that GABAergic short-term plasticity is impaired in App knock-out (App(-/-)) animals, but the precise mechanism by which APP regulates GABAergic synaptic transmission has remained elusive. Using electrophysiological, biochemical, moleculobiological, and pharmacological analysis, here we show that APP can physically interact with KCC2, a neuron-specific K(+)-Cl(-) cotransporter that is essential for Cl(-) homeostasis and fast GABAergic inhibition. APP deficiency results in significant reductions in both total and membrane KCC2 levels, leading to a depolarizing shift in the GABA reversal potential (EGABA). Simultaneous measurement of presynaptic action potentials and inhibitory postsynaptic currents (IPSCs) in hippocampal neurons reveals impaired unitary IPSC amplitudes attributable to a reduction in α1 subunit levels of GABAAR. Importantly, restoration of normal KCC2 expression and function in App(-/-) mice rescues EGABA, GABAAR α1 levels and GABAAR mediated phasic inhibition. We show that APP functions to limit tyrosine-phosphorylation and ubiquitination and thus subsequent degradation of KCC2, providing a mechanism by which APP influences KCC2 abundance. Together, these experiments elucidate a novel molecular pathway in which APP regulates, via protein-protein interaction with KCC2, GABAAR mediated inhibition in the hippocampus.

  9. APP modulates KCC2 expression and function in hippocampal GABAergic inhibition

    PubMed Central

    Chen, Ming; Wang, Jinzhao; Jiang, Jinxiang; Zheng, Xingzhi; Justice, Nicholas J; Wang, Kun; Ran, Xiangqian; Li, Yi; Huo, Qingwei; Zhang, Jiajia; Li, Hongmei; Lu, Nannan; Wang, Ying; Zheng, Hui; Long, Cheng; Yang, Li

    2017-01-01

    Amyloid precursor protein (APP) is enriched at the synapse, but its synaptic function is still poorly understood. We previously showed that GABAergic short-term plasticity is impaired in App knock-out (App-/-) animals, but the precise mechanism by which APP regulates GABAergic synaptic transmission has remained elusive. Using electrophysiological, biochemical, moleculobiological, and pharmacological analysis, here we show that APP can physically interact with KCC2, a neuron-specific K+-Cl- cotransporter that is essential for Cl- homeostasis and fast GABAergic inhibition. APP deficiency results in significant reductions in both total and membrane KCC2 levels, leading to a depolarizing shift in the GABA reversal potential (EGABA). Simultaneous measurement of presynaptic action potentials and inhibitory postsynaptic currents (IPSCs) in hippocampal neurons reveals impaired unitary IPSC amplitudes attributable to a reduction in α1 subunit levels of GABAAR. Importantly, restoration of normal KCC2 expression and function in App-/- mice rescues EGABA, GABAAR α1 levels and GABAAR mediated phasic inhibition. We show that APP functions to limit tyrosine-phosphorylation and ubiquitination and thus subsequent degradation of KCC2, providing a mechanism by which APP influences KCC2 abundance. Together, these experiments elucidate a novel molecular pathway in which APP regulates, via protein-protein interaction with KCC2, GABAAR mediated inhibition in the hippocampus. DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.7554/eLife.20142.001 PMID:28054918

  10. Chylomicron components mediate intestinal lipid-induced inhibition of gastric motor function.

    PubMed

    Glatzle, Jörg; Kalogeris, Theodore J; Zittel, Tilman T; Guerrini, Stephania; Tso, Patrick; Raybould, Helen E

    2002-01-01

    Lipid, particularly long-chain triglyceride, initiates feedback regulation of gastrointestinal function. To determine whether the site of action of lipid is pre- or postabsorptive, we investigated the ability of mesenteric lipid-fed lymph to inhibit gastric motor function. Lymph was collected from awake lymph-fistula rats during intestinal infusion with either a glucose-saline maintenance solution or lipid. Intra-arterial injection of lymph collected during intestinal lipid infusion significantly inhibited gastric motility in anesthetized recipient rats compared with injection of equivalent amounts of triglyceride or lymph collected during intestinal infusion of maintenance solution. Lymph collected from rats during lipid infusion with Pluronic L-81 [an inhibitor of chylomicron formation and apolipoprotein (apo) A-IV secretion] compared with lymph injection from donor animals treated with Pluronic L-63 (a noninhibitory control for Pluronic L-81) was significantly less potent. Injection of purified recombinant apo A-IV significantly inhibited gastric motility. Products of lipid digestion and absorption, other than fatty acids or triglyceride, released by the intestine during lipid digestion likely serve as signals to initiate intestinal feedback regulation of gastrointestinal function. Most likely, apo A-IV is one of the signals involved.

  11. Allosteric inhibition of aminopeptidase N functions related to tumor growth and virus infection

    PubMed Central

    Santiago, César; Mudgal, Gaurav; Reguera, Juan; Recacha, Rosario; Albrecht, Sébastien; Enjuanes, Luis; Casasnovas, José M.

    2017-01-01

    Cell surface aminopeptidase N (APN) is a membrane-bound ectoenzyme that hydrolyzes proteins and peptides and regulates numerous cell functions. APN participates in tumor cell expansion and motility, and is a target for cancer therapies. Small drugs that bind to the APN active site inhibit catalysis and suppress tumor growth. APN is also a major cell entry receptor for coronavirus, which binds to a region distant from the active site. Three crystal structures that we determined of human and pig APN ectodomains defined the dynamic conformation of the protein. These structures offered snapshots of closed, intermediate and open APN, which represent distinct functional states. Coronavirus envelope proteins specifically recognized the open APN form, prevented ectodomain progression to the closed form and substrate hydrolysis. In addition, drugs that bind the active site inhibited both coronavirus binding to cell surface APN and infection; the drugs probably hindered APN transition to the virus-specific open form. We conclude that allosteric inhibition of APN functions occurs by ligand suppression of ectodomain motions necessary for catalysis and virus cell entry, as validated by locking APN with disulfides. Blocking APN dynamics can thus be a valuable approach to development of drugs that target this ectoenzyme. PMID:28393915

  12. Allosteric inhibition of aminopeptidase N functions related to tumor growth and virus infection.

    PubMed

    Santiago, César; Mudgal, Gaurav; Reguera, Juan; Recacha, Rosario; Albrecht, Sébastien; Enjuanes, Luis; Casasnovas, José M

    2017-04-10

    Cell surface aminopeptidase N (APN) is a membrane-bound ectoenzyme that hydrolyzes proteins and peptides and regulates numerous cell functions. APN participates in tumor cell expansion and motility, and is a target for cancer therapies. Small drugs that bind to the APN active site inhibit catalysis and suppress tumor growth. APN is also a major cell entry receptor for coronavirus, which binds to a region distant from the active site. Three crystal structures that we determined of human and pig APN ectodomains defined the dynamic conformation of the protein. These structures offered snapshots of closed, intermediate and open APN, which represent distinct functional states. Coronavirus envelope proteins specifically recognized the open APN form, prevented ectodomain progression to the closed form and substrate hydrolysis. In addition, drugs that bind the active site inhibited both coronavirus binding to cell surface APN and infection; the drugs probably hindered APN transition to the virus-specific open form. We conclude that allosteric inhibition of APN functions occurs by ligand suppression of ectodomain motions necessary for catalysis and virus cell entry, as validated by locking APN with disulfides. Blocking APN dynamics can thus be a valuable approach to development of drugs that target this ectoenzyme.

  13. PIN1 inhibits apoptosis in hepatocellular carcinoma through modulation of the antiapoptotic function of survivin.

    PubMed

    Cheng, Chi-Wai; Chow, Ariel K M; Pang, Roberta; Fok, Elaine W S; Kwong, Yok-Lam; Tse, Eric

    2013-03-01

    PIN1, a peptidyl-prolyl-isomerase, binds a specific motif comprising a phosphorylated serine or threonine preceding a proline (p-Ser/Thr-Pro) residue in proteins. Through cis-trans isomerization, it induces conformational changes and modulates functions of many proteins that are involved in cell cycle progression, cell proliferation, and oncogenesis. PIN1 is overexpressed in hepatocellular carcinomas (HCC) and contributes to hepatocarcinogenesis. We investigated the role of PIN1 and the significance of its interaction with the inhibitor of apoptosis protein survivin in evading apoptosis in HCC cells. Using cell line and xenograft models, we determined that PIN1 overexpression inhibits apoptosis through suppression of caspase-3 and caspase-9 activity. In addition, down-regulation of survivin in PIN1-overexpressing cells attenuated the antiapoptotic effect induced by PIN1, suggesting that the inhibition of apoptosis is mediated through PIN1-survivin interaction. Coimmunoprecipitation assays showed that PIN1 interacted with survivin via the phosphorylated Thr34-Pro35 motif and enhanced binding among survivin phosphorylated at Thr34, hepatitis B X-interacting protein (HBXIP), and pro-caspase-9. Taken together, these results suggest that the inhibition of apoptosis by PIN1 in HCC cells is mediated through modulation of the antiapoptotic function of survivin by increasing its binding to pro-caspase-9 via HBXIP. Such functional interaction between PIN1 and survivin may therefore play an important role in hepatocarcinogenesis and chemoresistance. Copyright © 2013 American Society for Investigative Pathology. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  14. Rosuvastatin enhances anti-inflammatory and inhibits pro-inflammatory functions in cultured microglial cells.

    PubMed

    Kata, D; Földesi, I; Feher, L Z; Hackler, L; Puskas, L G; Gulya, K

    2016-02-09

    Microglial activation results in profound morphological, functional and gene expression changes that affect the pro- and anti-inflammatory mechanisms of these cells. Although statins have beneficial effects on inflammation, they have not been thoroughly investigated for their ability to affect microglial functions. Therefore the effects of rosuvastatin, one of the most commonly prescribed drugs in cardiovascular therapy, either alone or in combination with bacterial lipopolysaccharide (LPS), were profiled in pure microglial cultures derived from the forebrains of 18-day-old rat embryos. To reveal the effects of rosuvastatin on a number of pro- and anti-inflammatory mechanisms, we performed morphometric, functional and gene expression studies relating to cell adhesion and proliferation, phagocytosis, pro- and anti-inflammatory cytokine (IL-1β, tumor necrosis factor α (TNF-α) and IL-10, respectively) production, and the expression of various inflammation-related genes, including those related to the above morphological parameters and cellular functions. We found that microglia could be an important therapeutic target of rosuvastatin. In unchallenged (control) microglia, rosuvastatin inhibited proliferation and cell adhesion, but promoted microspike formation and elevated the expression of certain anti-inflammatory genes (Cxcl1, Ccl5, Mbl2), while phagocytosis or pro- and anti-inflammatory cytokine production were unaffected. Moreover, rosuvastatin markedly inhibited microglial activation in LPS-challenged cells by affecting both their morphology and functions as it inhibited LPS-elicited phagocytosis and inhibited pro-inflammatory cytokine (IL-1β, TNF-α) production, concomitantly increasing the level of IL-10, an anti-inflammatory cytokine. Finally, rosuvastatin beneficially and differentially affected the expression of a number of inflammation-related genes in LPS-challenged cells by inhibiting numerous pro-inflammatory and stimulating several anti

  15. [Optimization of cardiovascular function by peptide bio-regulators].

    PubMed

    Cherkashin, V A; Semin, G F; Veretenko, A A

    2002-01-01

    Effects of peptide bioregulators (thymaline, epithalamine, cortexine) on systemic hemodynamics in cardiovascular and cerebrovascular affections were studied. Assessment of functional stability and quality of cardiovascular system regulation was made according to methodological principles of automatic regulation theory. Peptide bioregulators showed high effectiveness in the above patients who markedly improved their hemodynamic parameters.

  16. Optimism and Cardiovascular Function in Children with Congenital Heart Disease

    DTIC Science & Technology

    2010-02-17

    intervention . Children with CHD have increased behavioral problems, increased levels of psychological distress, and increased levels of anxiety compared...1994). Evidence further demonstrates continued compromised cardiac function in most post-surgical children following successful intervention and...affected by diseases or pharmacological interventions . The same assertions are true of personality traits, enduring traits can change, either

  17. Atorvastatin inhibits RhoC function and limits head and neck cancer metastasis

    PubMed Central

    Islam, Mozaffarul; Sharma, Smita; Kumar, Bhavna; Teknos, Theodoros N.

    2015-01-01

    SUMMARY Objective RhoC oncogene is a well characterized marker of metastasis in a majority of invasive cancers, including HNSCC. Elevated RhoC expression has been found to be associated with distant metastasis. Statins are a class of drugs that are used to reduce cholesterol levels by inhibiting HMG-CoA reductase activity which in turns prevents mevalonate synthesis, which is a precursor for synthesis of cholesterol and prenylation. Interestingly, the proper function of Rho proteins depends on prenylation. Significantly, it has been reported that metastasis in human melanoma can be reduced by atorvastatin which inhibits RhoC activity by preventing its geranylgeranylation. Given that RhoC is a key oncogene involved in metastasis, we hypothesized Atorvastatin can reduce head and neck metastasis by inhibiting RhoC activity. Methods In vitro and in vivo studies were carried out to evaluate the ability of Atorvastatin to inhibit RhoC function and HNSCC metastasis. Cell motility, proliferation, cell invasion, and colony formation assays were performed according to the standard protocols. Results Atorvastatin treatment significantly reduced the active form of RhoC in vitro and diminished cell motility, invasion, proliferation and colony formation. Importantly, we observed a significant decrease in p-ERK1/2 and p-STAT3 in Atorvastatin treated cell lines. In vivo experiments revealed inhibition of angiogenesis and lung metastases with Atorvastatin therapy. Conclusions This study is the first of its kind to establish a potential role of Atorvastatin in head and neck cancer therapy. These findings suggest that Atorvastatin can be a potential low risk adjuvant therapy to minimize metastases in aggressive forms of HNSCC. PMID:23648017

  18. Disruption of mitochondrial electron transport chain function potentiates the pro-apoptotic effects of MAPK inhibition.

    PubMed

    Trotta, Andrew P; Gelles, Jesse D; Serasinghe, Madhavika N; Loi, Patrick; Arbiser, Jack L; Chipuk, Jerry E

    2017-07-14

    The mitochondrial network is a major site of ATP production through the coupled integration of the electron transport chain (ETC) with oxidative phosphorylation. In melanoma arising from the V600E mutation in the kinase v-RAF murine sarcoma viral oncogene homolog B (BRAF(V600E)), oncogenic signaling enhances glucose-dependent metabolism while reducing mitochondrial ATP production. Likewise, when BRAF(V600E) is pharmacologically inhibited by targeted therapies (e.g. PLX-4032/vemurafenib), glucose metabolism is reduced, and cells increase mitochondrial ATP production to sustain survival. Therefore, collateral inhibition of oncogenic signaling and mitochondrial respiration may help enhance the therapeutic benefit of targeted therapies. Honokiol (HKL) is a well tolerated small molecule that disrupts mitochondrial function; however, its underlying mechanisms and potential utility with targeted anticancer therapies remain unknown. Using wild-type BRAF and BRAF(V600E) melanoma model systems, we demonstrate here that HKL administration rapidly reduces mitochondrial respiration by broadly inhibiting ETC complexes I, II, and V, resulting in decreased ATP levels. The subsequent energetic crisis induced two cellular responses involving cyclin-dependent kinases (CDKs). First, loss of CDK1-mediated phosphorylation of the mitochondrial division GTPase dynamin-related protein 1 promoted mitochondrial fusion, thus coupling mitochondrial energetic status and morphology. Second, HKL decreased CDK2 activity, leading to G1 cell cycle arrest. Importantly, although pharmacological inhibition of oncogenic MAPK signaling increased ETC activity, co-treatment with HKL ablated this response and vastly enhanced the rate of apoptosis. Collectively, these findings integrate HKL action with mitochondrial respiration and shape and substantiate a pro-survival role of mitochondrial function in melanoma cells after oncogenic MAPK inhibition.

  19. Neuropeptides function in a homeostatic manner to modulate excitation-inhibition imbalance in C. elegans.

    PubMed

    Stawicki, Tamara M; Takayanagi-Kiya, Seika; Zhou, Keming; Jin, Yishi

    2013-05-01

    Neuropeptides play crucial roles in modulating neuronal networks, including changing intrinsic properties of neurons and synaptic efficacy. We previously reported a Caenorhabditis elegans mutant, acr-2(gf), that displays spontaneous convulsions as the result of a gain-of-function mutation in a neuronal nicotinic acetylcholine receptor subunit. The ACR-2 channel is expressed in the cholinergic motor neurons, and acr-2(gf) causes cholinergic overexcitation accompanied by reduced GABAergic inhibition in the locomotor circuit. Here we show that neuropeptides play a homeostatic role that compensates for this excitation-inhibition imbalance in the locomotor circuit. Loss of function in genes required for neuropeptide processing or release of dense core vesicles specifically modulate the convulsion frequency of acr-2(gf). The proprotein convertase EGL-3 is required in the cholinergic motor neurons to restrain convulsions. Electrophysiological recordings of neuromuscular junctions show that loss of egl-3 in acr-2(gf) causes a further reduction of GABAergic inhibition. We identify two neuropeptide encoding genes, flp-1 and flp-18, that together counteract the excitation-inhibition imbalance in acr-2(gf) mutants. We further find that acr-2(gf) causes an increased expression of flp-18 in the ventral cord cholinergic motor neurons and that overexpression of flp-18 reduces the convulsion of acr-2(gf) mutants. The effects of these peptides are in part mediated by two G-protein coupled receptors, NPR-1 and NPR-5. Our data suggest that the chronic overexcitation of the cholinergic motor neurons imposed by acr-2(gf) leads to an increased production of FMRFamide neuropeptides, which act to decrease the activity level of the locomotor circuit, thereby homeostatically modulating the excitation and inhibition imbalance.

  20. Neuropeptides Function in a Homeostatic Manner to Modulate Excitation-Inhibition Imbalance in C. elegans

    PubMed Central

    Zhou, Keming; Jin, Yishi

    2013-01-01

    Neuropeptides play crucial roles in modulating neuronal networks, including changing intrinsic properties of neurons and synaptic efficacy. We previously reported a Caenorhabditis elegans mutant, acr-2(gf), that displays spontaneous convulsions as the result of a gain-of-function mutation in a neuronal nicotinic acetylcholine receptor subunit. The ACR-2 channel is expressed in the cholinergic motor neurons, and acr-2(gf) causes cholinergic overexcitation accompanied by reduced GABAergic inhibition in the locomotor circuit. Here we show that neuropeptides play a homeostatic role that compensates for this excitation-inhibition imbalance in the locomotor circuit. Loss of function in genes required for neuropeptide processing or release of dense core vesicles specifically modulate the convulsion frequency of acr-2(gf). The proprotein convertase EGL-3 is required in the cholinergic motor neurons to restrain convulsions. Electrophysiological recordings of neuromuscular junctions show that loss of egl-3 in acr-2(gf) causes a further reduction of GABAergic inhibition. We identify two neuropeptide encoding genes, flp-1 and flp-18, that together counteract the excitation-inhibition imbalance in acr-2(gf) mutants. We further find that acr-2(gf) causes an increased expression of flp-18 in the ventral cord cholinergic motor neurons and that overexpression of flp-18 reduces the convulsion of acr-2(gf) mutants. The effects of these peptides are in part mediated by two G-protein coupled receptors, NPR-1 and NPR-5. Our data suggest that the chronic overexcitation of the cholinergic motor neurons imposed by acr-2(gf) leads to an increased production of FMRFamide neuropeptides, which act to decrease the activity level of the locomotor circuit, thereby homeostatically modulating the excitation and inhibition imbalance. PMID:23658528

  1. Bacterial Signaling Nucleotides Inhibit Yeast Cell Growth by Impacting Mitochondrial and Other Specifically Eukaryotic Functions

    PubMed Central

    Vergnano, Marta; Wan, Chris

    2017-01-01

    ABSTRACT We have engineered Saccharomyces cerevisiae to inducibly synthesize the prokaryotic signaling nucleotides cyclic di-GMP (cdiGMP), cdiAMP, and ppGpp in order to characterize the range of effects these nucleotides exert on eukaryotic cell function during bacterial pathogenesis. Synthetic genetic array (SGA) and transcriptome analyses indicated that, while these compounds elicit some common reactions in yeast, there are also complex and distinctive responses to each of the three nucleotides. All three are capable of inhibiting eukaryotic cell growth, with the guanine nucleotides exhibiting stronger effects than cdiAMP. Mutations compromising mitochondrial function and chromatin remodeling show negative epistatic interactions with all three nucleotides. In contrast, certain mutations that cause defects in chromatin modification and ribosomal protein function show positive epistasis, alleviating growth inhibition by at least two of the three nucleotides. Uniquely, cdiGMP is lethal both to cells growing by respiration on acetate and to obligately fermentative petite mutants. cdiGMP is also synthetically lethal with the ribonucleotide reductase (RNR) inhibitor hydroxyurea. Heterologous expression of the human ppGpp hydrolase Mesh1p prevented the accumulation of ppGpp in the engineered yeast and restored cell growth. Extensive in vivo interactions between bacterial signaling molecules and eukaryotic gene function occur, resulting in outcomes ranging from growth inhibition to death. cdiGMP functions through a mechanism that must be compensated by unhindered RNR activity or by functionally competent mitochondria. Mesh1p may be required for abrogating the damaging effects of ppGpp in human cells subjected to bacterial infection. PMID:28743817

  2. Inhibition of Propofol Anesthesia on Functional Connectivity between LFPs in PFC during Rat Working Memory Task

    PubMed Central

    Li, Shuangyan; Li, Yize; Wang, Guolin; Tian, Xin

    2013-01-01

    Working memory (WM) refers to the temporary storage and manipulation of information necessary for performance of complex cognitive tasks. There is a growing interest in whether and how propofol anesthesia inhibits WM function. The aim of this study is to investigate the possible inhibition mechanism of propofol anesthesia based on the functional connections of multi-local field potentials (LFPs) and behavior during WM tasks. Adult SD rats were randomly divided into 3 groups: pro group (0.5 mg·kg−1·min−1,2 h), PRO group (0.9 mg·kg−1·min−1, 2 h) and control group. The experimental data were 16-channel LFPs obtained at prefrontal cortex with implanted microelectrode array in SD rats during WM tasks in Y-maze at 24, 48, 72, 96, 120 hours (day 1-day 5) after propofol anesthesia, and the behavior results of WM were recoded at the same time. Directed transfer function (DTF) method was applied to analyze the connections among LFPs directly. Furthermore, the causal networks were identified by DTF. The clustering coefficient (C), network density (D) and global efficiency (Eglobal) were selected to describe the functional connectivity quantitatively. The results show that: comparing with the control group, the LFPs functional connectivity in pro group were no significantly difference (p>0.05); the connectivity in PRO group were significantly decreased (p<0.05 at 24 hours, p<0.05 at 48 hours), while no significant difference at 72, 96 and 120 hours for rats (p>0.05), which were consistent with the behavior results. These findings could lead to improved understanding the mechanism of inhibition of anesthesia on WM functions from the view of connections among LFPs. PMID:24386243

  3. Plant organelle proteomics: collaborating for optimal cell function.

    PubMed

    Agrawal, Ganesh Kumar; Bourguignon, Jacques; Rolland, Norbert; Ephritikhine, Geneviève; Ferro, Myriam; Jaquinod, Michel; Alexiou, Konstantinos G; Chardot, Thierry; Chakraborty, Niranjan; Jolivet, Pascale; Doonan, John H; Rakwal, Randeep

    2011-01-01

    Organelle proteomics describes the study of proteins present in organelle at a particular instance during the whole period of their life cycle in a cell. Organelles are specialized membrane bound structures within a cell that function by interacting with cytosolic and luminal soluble proteins making the protein composition of each organelle dynamic. Depending on organism, the total number of organelles within a cell varies, indicating their evolution with respect to protein number and function. For example, one of the striking differences between plant and animal cells is the plastids in plants. Organelles have their own proteins, and few organelles like mitochondria and chloroplast have their own genome to synthesize proteins for specific function and also require nuclear-encoded proteins. Enormous work has been performed on animal organelle proteomics. However, plant organelle proteomics has seen limited work mainly due to: (i) inter-plant and inter-tissue complexity, (ii) difficulties in isolation of subcellular compartments, and (iii) their enrichment and purity. Despite these concerns, the field of organelle proteomics is growing in plants, such as Arabidopsis, rice and maize. The available data are beginning to help better understand organelles and their distinct and/or overlapping functions in different plant tissues, organs or cell types, and more importantly, how protein components of organelles behave during development and with surrounding environments. Studies on organelles have provided a few good reviews, but none of them are comprehensive. Here, we present a comprehensive review on plant organelle proteomics starting from the significance of organelle in cells, to organelle isolation, to protein identification and to biology and beyond. To put together such a systematic, in-depth review and to translate acquired knowledge in a proper and adequate form, we join minds to provide discussion and viewpoints on the collaborative nature of organelles in

  4. Optimized loudness-function estimation for categorical loudness scaling data.

    PubMed

    Oetting, Dirk; Brand, Thomas; Ewert, Stephan D

    2014-10-01

    Individual loudness perception can be assessed using categorical loudness scaling (CLS). The procedure does not require any training and is frequently used in clinics. The goal of this study was to investigate different methods of loudness-function estimation from CLS data in terms of their test-retest behaviour and to suggest an improved method compared to Brand and Hohmann (2002) for adaptive CLS. Four different runs of the CLS procedure were conducted using 13 normal-hearing and 11 hearing-impaired listeners. The following approaches for loudness-function estimation (fitting) by minimising the error between the data and loudness function were compared: Errors were defined both in level and in loudness direction, respectively. The hearing threshold level (HTL) was extracted from CLS by splitting the responses into an audible and an inaudible category. The extracted HTL was used as a fixed starting point of the loudness function. The uncomfortable loudness level (UCL) was estimated if presentation levels were not sufficiently high to yield responses in the upper loudness range, as often observed in practise. Compared to the original fitting method, the modified estimation of the HTL was closer to the pure-tone audiometric threshold. Results of a computer simulation for UCL estimation showed that the estimation error was reduced for data sets with sparse or absent responses in the upper loudness range. Overall, the suggested modifications lead to a better test-retest behaviour. If CLS data are highly consistent over the whole loudness range, all fitting methods lead to almost equal loudness functions. A considerable advantage of the suggested fitting method is observed for data sets where the responses either show high standard deviations or where responses are not present in the upper loudness range. Both cases regularly occur in clinical practice. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  5. Discovery of a JAK3-Selective Inhibitor: Functional Differentiation of JAK3-Selective Inhibition over pan-JAK or JAK1-Selective Inhibition.

    PubMed

    Telliez, Jean-Baptiste; Dowty, Martin E; Wang, Lu; Jussif, Jason; Lin, Tsung; Li, Li; Moy, Erick; Balbo, Paul; Li, Wei; Zhao, Yajuan; Crouse, Kimberly; Dickinson, Caitlyn; Symanowicz, Peter; Hegen, Martin; Banker, Mary Ellen; Vincent, Fabien; Unwalla, Ray; Liang, Sidney; Gilbert, Adam M; Brown, Matthew F; Hayward, Matthew; Montgomery, Justin; Yang, Xin; Bauman, Jonathan; Trujillo, John I; Casimiro-Garcia, Agustin; Vajdos, Felix F; Leung, Louis; Geoghegan, Kieran F; Quazi, Amira; Xuan, Dejun; Jones, Lyn; Hett, Erik; Wright, Katherine; Clark, James D; Thorarensen, Atli

    2016-12-16

    PF-06651600, a newly discovered potent JAK3-selective inhibitor, is highly efficacious at inhibiting γc cytokine signaling, which is dependent on both JAK1 and JAK3. PF-06651600 allowed the comparison of JAK3-selective inhibition to pan-JAK or JAK1-selective inhibition, in relevant immune cells to a level that could not be achieved previously without such potency and selectivity. In vitro, PF-06651600 inhibits Th1 and Th17 cell differentiation and function, and in vivo it reduces disease pathology in rat adjuvant-induced arthritis as well as in mouse experimental autoimmune encephalomyelitis models. Importantly, by sparing JAK1 function, PF-06651600 selectively targets γc cytokine pathways while preserving JAK1-dependent anti-inflammatory signaling such as the IL-10 suppressive functions following LPS treatment in macrophages and the suppression of TNFα and IL-1β production in IL-27-primed macrophages. Thus, JAK3-selective inhibition differentiates from pan-JAK or JAK1 inhibition in various immune cellular responses, which could potentially translate to advantageous clinical outcomes in inflammatory and autoimmune diseases.

  6. Synthesis and SAR optimization of diketo acid pharmacophore for HCV NS5B polymerase inhibition

    PubMed Central

    Bhatt, Aaditya; Gurukumar, K. R.; Basu, Amartya; Patel, Maulik R.; Kaushik-Basu, Neerja; Talele, Tanaji T.

    2011-01-01

    Hepatitis C virus (HCV) NS5B polymerase is a key target for anti-HCV therapeutics development. Here we report the synthesis and biological evaluation of a new series of α,γ-diketo acids (DKAs) as NS5B polymerase inhibitors. We initiated structure-activity relationship (SAR) optimization around the furan moiety of compound 1a [IC50 = 21.8 μM] to achieve more active NS5B inhibitors. This yielded compound 3a [IC50 = 8.2 μM] bearing the 5-bromobenzofuran-2-yl moiety, the first promising lead compound of the series. Varying the furan moiety with thiophene, thiazole and indazole moieties resulted in compound 11a [IC50 = 7.5 μM] bearing 3-methylthiophen-2-yl moiety. Finally replacement of the thiophene ring with a bioisosteric phenyl ring further improved the inhibitory activity as seen in compounds 21a [IC50 = 5.2 μM] and 24a [IC50 = 2.4 μM]. Binding mode of compound 24a using glide docking within the active site of NS5B polymerase will form the basis for future SAR optimization. PMID:21893371

  7. Optimal behavior by rats in a choice task is associated to a persistent conditioned inhibition effect.

    PubMed

    Trujano, R Emmanuel; López, Paulina; Rojas-Leguizamón, Maryed; Orduña, Vladimir

    2016-09-01

    When given a choice between an alternative with a low probability of reinforcement and discriminative stimuli, and another with a higher probability of reinforcement and non-discriminative stimuli, pigeons show a clear preference for the former but rats clearly prefer the later. It has been reported that pigeon's suboptimal choice is associated to a diminishing effect of the stimulus correlated with non-reinforcement. In the present paper, we explored the possibility that rats' optimal choice is more strongly influenced than pigeons' by the stimulus associated to non-reinforcement and that the effects of it do not dissipate during training. We trained rats to choose between an alternative with 0.50 probability of reinforcement and discriminative stimuli, and an alternative with 0.75 probability of reinforcement and non-discriminative stimuli. We replicated the strong preference for the optimal alternative. Then, after several sessions of training, we presented summation trials in which both the stimulus associated to reinforcement and the stimulus associated to non-reinforcement were simultaneously presented. The results showed that the stimulus associated to non-reinforcement exerted a strong effect on choice, and, more importantly, that it did not seem to dissipate across training. These results suggest that the strong difference found between pigeons and rats in the suboptimal choice procedure is potentially related to differences in the impact of conditioned inhibitors.

  8. Structural insights into functional amyloid inhibition in Gram −ve bacteria

    PubMed Central

    Hawthorne, William; Rouse, Sarah; Sewell, Lee; Matthews, Stephen J.

    2016-01-01

    Amyloids are proteinaceous aggregates known for their role in debilitating degenerative diseases involving protein dysfunction. Many forms of functional amyloid are also produced in nature and often these systems require careful control of their assembly to avoid the potentially toxic effects. The best-characterised functional amyloid system is the bacterial curli system. Three natural inhibitors of bacterial curli amyloid have been identified and recently characterised structurally. Here, we compare common structural features of CsgC, CsgE and CsgH and discuss the potential implications for general inhibition of amyloid. PMID:27913673

  9. Numerical experience with a class of algorithms for nonlinear optimization using inexact function and gradient information

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Carter, Richard G.

    1989-01-01

    For optimization problems associated with engineering design, parameter estimation, image reconstruction, and other optimization/simulation applications, low accuracy function and gradient values are frequently much less expensive to obtain than high accuracy values. Here, researchers investigate the computational performance of trust region methods for nonlinear optimization when high accuracy evaluations are unavailable or prohibitively expensive, and confirm earlier theoretical predictions when the algorithm is convergent even with relative gradient errors of 0.5 or more. The proper choice of the amount of accuracy to use in function and gradient evaluations can result in orders-of-magnitude savings in computational cost.

  10. An Empirical Comparison of Seven Iterative and Evolutionary Function Optimization Heuristics

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Baluja, Shumeet

    1995-01-01

    This report is a repository of the results obtained from a large scale empirical comparison of seven iterative and evolution-based optimization heuristics. Twenty-seven static optimization problems, spanning six sets of problem classes which are commonly explored in genetic algorithm literature, are examined. The problem sets include job-shop scheduling, traveling salesman, knapsack, binpacking, neural network weight optimization, and standard numerical optimization. The search spaces in these problems range from 2368 to 22040. The results indicate that using genetic algorithms for the optimization of static functions does not yield a benefit, in terms of the final answer obtained, over simpler optimization heuristics. Descriptions of the algorithms tested and the encodings of the problems are described in detail for reproducibility.

  11. Akt Deficiency Attenuates Muscle Size and Function but Not the Response to ActRIIB Inhibition

    PubMed Central

    Goncalves, Marcus D.; Pistilli, Emidio E.; Balduzzi, Anthony; Birnbaum, Morris J.; Lachey, Jennifer; Khurana, Tejvir S.; Ahima, Rexford S.

    2010-01-01

    Background Akt is a critical mediator of developmental skeletal muscle growth. Treatment with a soluble ActRIIB fusion protein (ActRIIB-mFc) increases skeletal muscle mass and strength by inhibiting myostatin and related peptides. Recent in vitro studies have suggested that Akt signaling is necessary for the ability of ActRIIB inhibition to induce muscle hypertrophy. Thus, we hypothesized that mice deficient in either Akt1 or Akt2 would not respond to in vivo inhibition of ActRIIB with ActRIIB-mFc treatment. Methodology and Principal Findings We analyzed body composition and muscle parameters in wild-type C57BL/6J and Akt1 and Akt2 knockout mice, and compared the responses to blockade of ActRIIB signaling via ActRIIB-mFc treatment. Mice lacking Akt1 or Akt2 had reduced muscle mass, grip strength and contractile force. However, deficiency of Akt1 or Akt2 did not prevent the ability of ActRIIB-mFc treatment to induce muscle hypertrophy, or increase grip strength and contractile force. Akt1 and Akt2 deficient mice responded similarly as wild type mice to ActRIIB-mFc treatment by increasing fiber size. Conclusions and Significance Akt1 and Akt2 are important for the regulation of skeletal muscle mass and function. However, these Akt isoforms are not essential for the ability of ActRIIB inhibition to regulate muscle size, fiber type, strength or contractile force. PMID:20856813

  12. Density Functional Theory and Electrochemical Studies: Structure-Efficiency Relationship on Corrosion Inhibition.

    PubMed

    Camacho-Mendoza, Rosa L; Gutiérrez-Moreno, Evelin; Guzmán-Percástegui, Edmundo; Aquino-Torres, Eliazar; Cruz-Borbolla, Julián; Rodríguez-Ávila, José A; Alvarado-Rodríguez, José G; Olvera-Neria, Oscar; Thangarasu, Pandiyan; Medina-Franco, José L

    2015-11-23

    The relationship between structure and corrosion inhibition of a series of 30 imidazol, benzimidazol, and pyridine derivatives has been established through the investigation of quantum descriptors calculated with PBE/6-311++G**. A quantitative structure-property relationship model was obtained by examination of these descriptors using a genetic functional approximation method based on a multiple linear regression analysis. Our results indicate that the efficiency of corrosion inhibitors is strongly associated with aromaticity, electron donor ability, and molecular volume descriptors. In order to calibrate and validate the proposed model, we performed electrochemical impedance spectroscopy (EIS) studies on imidazole, 2-methylimidazole, benzimidazole, 2-chloromethylbenzimidazole, pyridine, and 2-aminopyridine compounds. The experimental values for efficiency of corrosion inhibition are in good agreement with the estimated values obtained by our model, thus confirming that our approach represents a promising and suitable tool to predict the inhibition of corrosion attributes of nitrogen containing heterocyclic compounds. The adsorption behavior of imidazole or benzimidazole heterocyclic molecules on the Fe(110) surface was also studied to elucidate the inhibition mechanism; the aromaticity played an important role in the adsorbate-surface complex.

  13. Enhanced prefrontal function with pharmacotherapy on a response inhibition task in adolescent bipolar disorder.

    PubMed

    Pavuluri, Mani N; Passarotti, Alessandra M; Harral, Erin M; Sweeney, John A

    2010-11-01

    The aim of the current study is to determine whether pharmacotherapy normalizes cognitive circuitry function supporting voluntary behavioral inhibition in adolescent bipolar disorder. Healthy controls and unmedicated patients with DSM-IV adolescent bipolar disorder in manic, mixed, or hypomanic episodes were matched on demographics and IQ (n = 13 per group; mean age = 14.4 ± 2.4 years). Functional magnetic resonance imaging studies were performed at baseline and after 14 weeks, during which time patients with adolescent bipolar disorder were treated initially with second-generation antipsychotics (SGAs) followed by lamotrigine monotherapy. The primary outcome measure was a Response Inhibition Task, which involved a planned motor response, already "on the way" to execution, that had to be voluntarily inhibited by the subjects in the trials in which a stop signal was presented. There were 6 blocks, each with a predominant rate of either "go" or "stop" trials. The study was conducted from June 2006 through July 2009. All patients showed significant improvement (P < .001) in both the manic and depressive symptoms from baseline. Behavioral data showed that accuracy improved over 14 weeks in patients and healthy controls. Significant time by group interaction effects for the difference between stop versus go blocks showed greater increases of activation in prefrontal (left inferior and middle frontal gyri and medial frontal gyrus bilaterally) and temporal (left superior temporal gyrus and right middle temporal gyrus) regions and greater decreases in activation in right putamen and bilateral thalamus at follow-up in the adolescent bipolar disorder group than in healthy controls. Increased ventrolateral prefrontal cortex function was related to clinical treatment response. Treatment with SGAs followed by lamotrigine monotherapy enhanced prefrontal and temporal lobe activity during a Response Inhibition Task demonstrating the reversal of disorder-relevant neural circuitry

  14. "Open lung ventilation optimizes pulmonary function during lung surgery".

    PubMed

    Downs, John B; Robinson, Lary A; Steighner, Michael L; Thrush, David; Reich, Richard R; Räsänen, Jukka O

    2014-12-01

    We evaluated an "open lung" ventilation (OV) strategy using low tidal volumes, low respiratory rate, low FiO2, and high continuous positive airway pressure in patients undergoing major lung resections. In this phase I pilot study, twelve consecutive patients were anesthetized using conventional ventilator settings (CV) and then OV strategy during which oxygenation and lung compliance were noted. Subsequently, a lung resection was performed. Data were collected during both modes of ventilation in each patient, with each patient acting as his own control. The postoperative course was monitored for complications. Twelve patients underwent open thoracotomies for seven lobectomies and five segmentectomies. The OV strategy provided consistent one-lung anesthesia and improved static compliance (40 ± 7 versus 25 ± 4 mL/cm H2O, P = 0.002) with airway pressures similar to CV. Postresection oxygenation (SpO2/FiO2) was better during OV (433 ± 11 versus 386 ± 15, P = 0.008). All postoperative chest x-rays were free of atelectasis or infiltrates. No patient required supplemental oxygen at any time postoperatively or on discharge. The mean hospital stay was 4 ± 1 d. There were no complications or mortality. The OV strategy, previously shown to have benefits during mechanical ventilation of patients with respiratory failure, proved safe and effective in lung resection patients. Because postoperative pulmonary complications may be directly attributable to the anesthetic management, adopting an OV strategy that optimizes lung mechanics and gas exchange may help reduce postoperative problems and improve overall surgical results. A randomized trial is planned to ascertain whether this technique will reduce postoperative pulmonary complications. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  15. Functional Characterization of Regulatory Macrophages That Inhibit Graft-reactive Immunity.

    PubMed

    Ochando, Jordi; Conde, Patricia

    2017-06-07

    Macrophage accumulation in transplanted organs has long been recognized as a feature of allograft rejection(1). Immunogenic monocytes infiltrate the allograft early after transplantation, mount a graft reactive response against the transplanted organ, and initiate organ rejection(2). Recent data suggest that suppressive macrophages facilitate successful long-term transplantation(3) and are required for the induction of transplantation tolerance(4). This suggests a multidimensional concept of macrophage ontogeny, activation, and function, which demands a new roadmap for the isolation and analysis of macrophage function(5). Due to the plasticity of macrophages, it is necessary to provide a methodology to isolate and characterize macrophages, depending on the tissue environment, and to define their functions according to different scenarios. Here, we describe a protocol for immune characterization of graft-infiltrating macrophages and the methods we used to functionally evaluate their capacity to inhibit CD8(+) T proliferation and to promote CD4(+)Foxp3(+) Treg expansion in vitro.

  16. Common and unique neural networks for proactive and reactive response inhibition revealed by independent component analysis of functional MRI data.

    PubMed

    van Belle, Janna; Vink, Matthijs; Durston, Sarah; Zandbelt, Bram B

    2014-12-01

    Response inhibition involves proactive and reactive modes. Proactive inhibition is goal-directed, triggered by warning cues, and serves to restrain actions. Reactive inhibition is stimulus-driven, triggered by salient stop-signals, and used to stop actions completely. Functional MRI studies have identified brain regions that activate during proactive and reactive inhibition. It remains unclear how these brain regions operate in functional networks, and whether proactive and reactive inhibition depend on common networks, unique networks, or a combination. To address this we analyzed a large fMRI dataset (N=65) of a stop-signal task designed to measure proactive and reactive inhibition, using independent component analysis (ICA). We found 1) three frontal networks that were associated with both proactive and reactive inhibition, 2) one network in the superior parietal lobe, which also included dorsal premotor cortex and left putamen, that was specifically associated with proactive inhibition, and 3) two right-lateralized frontal and fronto-parietal networks, including the right inferior frontal gyrus and temporoparietal junction as well as a bilateral fronto-temporal network that were uniquely associated with reactive inhibition. Overlap between networks was observed in dorsolateral prefrontal and parietal cortices. Taken together, we offer a new perspective on the neural underpinnings of inhibitory control, by showing that proactive inhibition and reactive inhibition are supported by a group of common and unique networks that appear to integrate and interact in frontoparietal areas.

  17. Optimization of the acoustic absorption coefficients of certain functional absorbents

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Pocsa, V.; Biborosch, L.; Veres, A.; Halpert, E.; Lorian, R.; Botos, T.

    1974-01-01

    The sound absorption coefficients of some functional absorbents (mineral wool plates) are determined by the reverberation chamber method. The influence of the angle of inclination of the sound absorbing material with respect to the surface to be treated is analyzed as well as the influence of the covering index, defined as the ratio of the designed area of a plate and the area of the treated surface belonging to another plate. As compared with the conventional method of applying sound-absorbing plates, the analyzed structures have a higher technological and economical efficiency. The optimum structure corresponds to an angle of inclination of 15 deg and a covering index of 0.8.

  18. Molecular cloning and functional analysis of three genes encoding polygalacturonase-inhibiting proteins from Capsicum annuum, and their relation to increased resistance to two fungal pathogens

    USDA-ARS?s Scientific Manuscript database

    Polygalacturonase-inhibiting proteins (PGIPs) are plant cell wall glycoproteins that can inhibit fungal endopolygalacturonases (PGs). Inhibiting by PGIPs directly reduces potential PG activity in specific plant pathogenic fungi, reducing their aggressiveness. Here, we isolated and functionally chara...

  19. Reconstruction of the unknown optimization cost functions from experimental recordings during static multi-finger prehension.

    PubMed

    Niu, Xun; Terekhov, Alexander V; Latash, Mark L; Zatsiorsky, Vladimir M

    2012-04-01

    The goal of the research is to reconstruct the unknown cost (objective) function(s) presumably used by the neural controller for sharing the total force among individual fingers in multifinger prehension. The cost function was determined from experimental data by applying the recently developed Analytical Inverse Optimization (ANIO) method (Terekhov et al. 2010). The core of the ANIO method is the Theorem of Uniqueness that specifies conditions for unique (with some restrictions) estimation of the objective functions. In the experiment, subjects (n = 8) grasped an instrumented handle and maintained it at rest in the air with various external torques, loads, and target grasping forces applied to the object. The experimental data recorded from 80 trials showed a tendency to lie on a 2-dimensional hyperplane in the 4-dimensional finger-force space. Because the constraints in each trial were different, such a propensity is a manifestation of a neural mechanism (not the task mechanics). In agreement with the Lagrange principle for the inverse optimization, the plane of experimental observations was close to the plane resulting from the direct optimization. The latter plane was determined using the ANIO method. The unknown cost function was reconstructed successfully for each performer, as well as for the group data. The cost functions were found to be quadratic with nonzero linear terms. The cost functions obtained with the ANIO method yielded more accurate results than other optimization methods. The ANIO method has an evident potential for addressing the problem of optimization in motor control.

  20. Integrating Taguchi Method with Desirability Function Analysis to Optimize the Laser Transmission Welding Process

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Acherjee, Bappa; Kuar, Arunanshu S.; Mitra, Souren; Misra, Dipten

    2010-10-01

    This paper presents a hybrid approach based on Taguchi method and desirability function analysis to optimize the laser transmission welding process. The Taguchi L25 orthogonal array, for a four factor five level design, is used for the study. The welding parameters, namely: laser power, welding speed, stand-off distance and clamp pressure are optimized with considerations of multiple quality characteristics including weld strength and weld width. The multiple quality characteristics are then combined into a dimensionless measure of performance called composite desirability function to simplify the optimization procedure. Subsequently, analysis of variance (ANOVA) is performed to determine the significance of parameters and to identify the optimum levels of parameters based on the composite desirability function. The confirmation experiment at the optimal levels shows that the targeted multiple quality characteristics can be significantly improved to achieve more desirable levels.

  1. TLR4 plays a crucial role in MSC-induced inhibition of NK cell function.

    PubMed

    Lu, Ying; Liu, Jin; Liu, Yang; Qin, Yaru; Luo, Qun; Wang, Quanli; Duan, Haifeng

    2015-08-21

    Mesenchymal stem cells (MSC) are a kind of stromal cell within the tumor microenvironment. In our research, MSC derived from acute myeloid leukemia patients' bone marrow (AML-MSC) and lung cancer tissues (LC-MSC) as well as normal bone marrow-derived MSC (BM-MSC) cultured in conditioned medium of HeLa cells were found to have higher expressions of Toll-like receptor (TLR4) mRNA compared with BM-MSC. The sorted TLR4-positive MSC (TLR4+ MSC) differed in cytokine (interleukin-6, interleukin-8, and monocyte chemoattractant protein-1) secretion from those of unsorted MSC. MSC was reported to inhibit natural killer (NK) cell proliferation and function. In this research, we confirmed that TLR4+ MSC aggravate this suppression. Furthermore, when TLR4 in the sorted cells were stimulated by LPS or following blocked by antibody, the suppression on NK cell proliferation and cytotoxicity were more intensive or recovered respectively. Compared to unsorted MSC, NKG2D receptor expression on NK cells were also inhibited by TLR4+ MSC. These findings suggest that activation of TLR4 pathway is important for TLR4+ MSC and MSC to obstruct anti-tumor immunity by inhibiting NK cell function, which may provide a potential stroma-targeted tumor therapy. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  2. R-citalopram inhibits functional and 5-HTP-evoked behavioural responses to the SSRI, escitalopram.

    PubMed

    Sánchez, Connie; Kreilgaard, Mads

    2004-02-01

    Escitalopram mediates the serotonin re-uptake inhibitory and antidepressant effect of citalopram racemate. However, recent studies have shown that R-citalopram inhibits the escitalopram-induced increase of extracellular 5-HT levels in the frontal cortex of rats. Here, we investigated the inhibitory effect of R-citalopram on the escitalopram-induced increase of 5-HT neurotransmission at the behavioural [potentiation of 5-hydroxytryptophan (5-HTP)-induced behavioural changes in mice and rats] and functional (increase in serum corticosterone in rats) levels. The effect of escitalopram was inhibited by R-citalopram in all three models, and R-citalopram, given alone, was inactive. The effects were more pronounced using an escitalopram to R-citalopram ratio of 1:4 than ratios of 1:2 and 1:1, suggesting a dose-dependent effect. The ED(50)-value of escitalopram in mouse 5-HTP potentiation studies corresponded to a serum concentration of approximately 50 ng/ml, which can be considered to be in the range of clinically relevant serum concentrations. In conclusion, R-citalopram inhibited the escitalopram-induced increase of 5-HT activity in functional, as well as behavioural, animal models. The mechanism involved in this interaction is currently unknown, but may be related to an improved clinical effect seen with escitalopram in comparison with citalopram.

  3. Cyanide levels found in infected cystic fibrosis sputum inhibit airway ciliary function.

    PubMed

    Nair, Chandrika; Shoemark, Amelia; Chan, Mario; Ollosson, Sarah; Dixon, Mellissa; Hogg, Claire; Alton, Eric W F W; Davies, Jane C; Williams, Huw D

    2014-11-01

    We have previously reported cyanide at concentrations of up to 150 μM in the sputum of cystic fibrosis patients infected with Pseudomonas aeruginosa and a negative correlation with lung function. Our aim was to investigate possible mechanisms for this association, focusing on the effect of pathophysiologically relevant cyanide levels on human respiratory cell function. Ciliary beat frequency measurements were performed on nasal brushings and nasal air-liquid interface (ALI) cultures obtained from healthy volunteers and cystic fibrosis patients. Potassium cyanide decreased ciliary beat frequency in healthy nasal brushings (n = 6) after 60 min (150 μM: 47% fall, p<0.0012; 75 μM: 32% fall, p<0.0001). Samples from cystic fibrosis patients (n = 3) showed similar results (150 μM: 55% fall, p = 0.001). Ciliary beat frequency inhibition was not due to loss of cell viability and was reversible. The inhibitory mechanism was independent of ATP levels. KCN also significantly inhibited ciliary beat frequency in ALI cultures, albeit to a lesser extent. Ciliary beat frequency measurements on ALI cultures treated with culture supernatants from P. aeruginosa mutants defective in virulence factor production implicated cyanide as a key component inhibiting the ciliary beat frequency. If cyanide production similarly impairs mucocilliary clearance in vivo, it could explain the link with increased disease severity observed in cystic fibrosis patients with detectable cyanide in their airway.

  4. Chronic Intermittent Hypobaric Hypoxia Improves Cardiac Function through Inhibition of Endoplasmic Reticulum Stress.

    PubMed

    Yuan, Fang; Zhang, Li; Li, Yan-Qing; Teng, Xu; Tian, Si-Yu; Wang, Xiao-Ran; Zhang, Yi

    2017-08-11

    We investigated the role of endoplasmic reticulum stress (ERS) in chronic intermittent hypobaric hypoxia (CIHH)-induced cardiac protection. Adult male Sprague-Dawley rats were exposed to CIHH treatment simulating 5000 m altitude for 28 days, 6 hours per day. The heart was isolated and perfused with Langendorff apparatus and subjected to 30-min ischemia followed by 60-min reperfusion. Cardiac function, infarct size, and lactate dehydrogenase (LDH) activity were assessed. Expression of ERS molecular chaperones (GRP78, CHOP and caspase-12) was assayed by western blot analysis. CIHH treatment improved the recovery of left ventricular function and decreased cardiac infarct size and activity of LDH after I/R compared to control rats. Furthermore, CIHH treatment inhibited over-expression of ERS-related factors including GRP78, CHOP and caspase-12. CIHH-induced cardioprotection and inhibition of ERS were eliminated by application of dithiothreitol, an ERS inducer, and chelerythrine, a protein kinase C (PKC) inhibitor. In conclusion CIHH treatment exerts cardiac protection against I/R injury through inhibition of ERS via PKC signaling pathway.

  5. Antipsychotic clozapine inhibits the function of alpha7-nicotinic acetylcholine receptors.

    PubMed

    Singhal, Sachin K; Zhang, Li; Morales, Marisela; Oz, Murat

    2007-02-01

    The effects of the antipsychotic clozapine on the function of the cloned alpha(7) subunit of the nicotinic acetylcholine (nACh) receptor expressed in Xenopus oocytes was investigated by using the two-electrode voltage-clamp technique. Clozapine reversibly inhibited nicotine (10 microM)-induced currents in a concentration-dependent manner (300 nM to 90 microM), with an IC(50) value of 3.2+/-0.4 microM. The effect of clozapine was not dependent on the membrane potential. Clozapine did not affect the activity of endogenous Ca(2+)-dependent Cl(-) channels since the inhibition by clozapine was unaltered by the intracellularly injected Ca(2+) chelator BAPTA and perfusion with Ca(2+)-free bathing solution containing 2mM Ba(2+). Clozapine decreased the maximal nicotine-induced responses without significantly affecting its potency, indicating that it acts as a noncompetitive antagonist on alpha(7)-nACh receptors. In hippocampal slices, the whole-cell recordings from CA1 pyramidal neurons indicated that the increases in the frequency and amplitudes of the GABA-mediated spontaneous inhibitory postsynaptic currents induced by bath application of 2 mM choline, a specific agonist for alpha(7)-nACh receptors, were abolished after 10 min application of 5 microM clozapine. In conclusion, these results demonstrate that clozapine inhibits the function of alpha(7)-nACh receptors expressed in Xenopus oocytes and in hippocampal neurons.

  6. Metabolic and functional consequences of inhibiting adenosine deaminase during renal ischemia in rats.

    PubMed Central

    Stromski, M E; van Waarde, A; Avison, M J; Thulin, G; Gaudio, K M; Kashgarian, M; Shulman, R G; Siegel, N J

    1988-01-01

    The concentrations of renal ATP have been measured by 31P-nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR) before, during, and after bilateral renal artery occlusion. Using in vivo NMR, the initial postischemic recovery of ATP increased with the magnitude of the residual nucleotide pool at the end of ischemia. ATP levels after 120 min of reflow correlated with functional recovery at 24 h. In the present study the effect of blocking the degradation of ATP during ischemia upon the postischemic restoration of ATP was investigated. Inhibition of adenosine deaminase by 80% with the tight-binding inhibitor 2'-deoxycoformycin led to a 20% increase in the residual adenine nucleotide pool. This increased the ATP initial recovery after 45 min of ischemia from 52% (in controls) to 62% (in the treated animals), as compared to the basal levels. The inhibition also caused an accelerated postischemic restoration of cellular ATP so that at 120 min it was 83% in treated rats vs. 63% in untreated animals. There was a corresponding improvement in the functional recovery from the insult (increase of 33% in inulin clearance 24 h after the injury). Inhibition of adenosine deaminase during ischemia results in a injury similar to that seen after a shorter period of insult. PMID:3263396

  7. Antisense Oligodeoxynucleotide Inhibition as an Alternative and Convenient Method for Gene Function Analysis in Pollen Tubes

    PubMed Central

    Liao, Fanglei; Wang, Lu; Yang, Li-Bo; Zhang, Liyao; Peng, Xiongbo; Sun, Meng-xiang

    2013-01-01

    Antisense oligodeoxynucleotide (A-ODN) inhibition works well in animal cells. However, there have been few successful examples to date of its application in plants, and more specifically whether the technique can be used in pollen tubes as a model of plant cell growth. NtGNL1 plays an important role in pollen tube development and was thus selected as an indicator to assess the biological effects of A-ODN. An A-ODN inhibition technique was used to down-regulate NtGNL1 expression in tobacco pollen tubes and showed that A-ODNs could quickly enter pollen tubes through the thick wall and cell membrane and effectively block NtGNL1 expression. Phenotype analysis revealed that the down-regulation of NtGNL1 by A-ODNs resulted in abnormalities in endocytosis and subsequent vesicle trafficking, similar to the phenotypes of pollen tubes treated with NtGNL1 RNAi. This investigation confirmed that A-ODNs could specifically inhibit target gene expression, and furthermore demonstrated that A-ODN functioned in a concentration- and duration-dependent manner, because A-ODNs could be degraded when incubated with pollen tubes. Thus, the A-ODN technique was successfully used for gene function analysis in pollen tubes and appears to be an alternative and convenient technique when the in vitro pollen tube is used as the study model. This technique will greatly facilitate investigations on the molecular mechanism(s) underlying pollen tube growth. PMID:23527102

  8. Prolactin inhibits a major tumor-suppressive function of wild type BRCA1.

    PubMed

    Chen, Kuan-Hui Ethan; Walker, Ameae M

    2016-06-01

    Even though mutations in the tumor suppressor, BRCA1, markedly increase the risk of breast and ovarian cancer, most breast and ovarian cancers express wild type BRCA1. An important question is therefore how the tumor-suppressive function of normal BRCA1 is overcome during development of most cancers. Because prolactin promotes these and other cancers, we investigated the hypothesis that prolactin interferes with the ability of BRCA1 to inhibit the cell cycle. Examining six different cancer cell lines with wild type BRCA1, and making use of both prolactin and the growth-inhibiting selective prolactin receptor modulator, S179D PRL, we demonstrate that prolactin activation of Stat5 results in the formation of a complex between phospho-Stat5 and BRCA1. Formation of this complex does not interfere with nuclear translocation or binding of BRCA1 to the p21 promoter, but does interfere with the ability of BRCA1 to transactivate the p21 promoter. Overexpression of a dominant-negative Stat5 in prolactin-stimulated cells resulted in increased p21 expression. We conclude that prolactin inhibits a major tumor-suppressive function of BRCA1 by interfering with BRCA1's upregulation of expression of the cell cycle inhibitor, p21.

  9. Functional dissection of the human Bc12 protein: sequence requirements for inhibition of apoptosis.

    PubMed Central

    Hunter, J J; Bond, B L; Parslow, T G

    1996-01-01

    Overexpression of the cytoplasmic oncoprotein Bc12 blocks programmed cell death (apoptosis) in many cellular systems. To map the sequences in Bc12 that are necessary for its activity, we created a library of deletion-scanning mutants of this 239-amino-acid protein and tested their abilities to block staurosporine-induced fibroblast apoptosis, using a novel transient-transfection assay. Phenotypes of informative mutants were then confirmed by assaying for inhibition of steroid-induced apoptosis in stably transfected T-lymphoid cells. In accordance with earlier results, we found that Bc12 activity was only partially reduced after deletion of the hydrophobic tail that normally anchors it in cytoplasmic membranes. Essential sequences were found in the remainder of the protein and appeared to be organized in at least two discrete functional domains. The larger, more C-terminal region (within residues 90 to 203) encompassed, but extended beyond, two oligopeptide motifs called BH1 and BH2, which are known to mediate dimerization of Bc12 and related proteins. The second, more N-terminal regions (within residues 6 to 31) was not required for protein dimerization in vivo, but its deletion imparted a dominant negative phenotype, yielding mutants that promoted rather than inhibited apoptotic death. Residues 30 to 91 were not absolutely required for function; by deleting most of this region along with the hydrophobic tail, we derived a 155-residue mini-Bc12 that retains significant ability to inhibit apoptosis. PMID:8622689

  10. Bacterial Signaling Nucleotides Inhibit Yeast Cell Growth by Impacting Mitochondrial and Other Specifically Eukaryotic Functions.

    PubMed

    Hesketh, Andy; Vergnano, Marta; Wan, Chris; Oliver, Stephen G

    2017-07-25

    We have engineered Saccharomyces cerevisiae to inducibly synthesize the prokaryotic signaling nucleotides cyclic di-GMP (cdiGMP), cdiAMP, and ppGpp in order to characterize the range of effects these nucleotides exert on eukaryotic cell function during bacterial pathogenesis. Synthetic genetic array (SGA) and transcriptome analyses indicated that, while these compounds elicit some common reactions in yeast, there are also complex and distinctive responses to each of the three nucleotides. All three are capable of inhibiting eukaryotic cell growth, with the guanine nucleotides exhibiting stronger effects than cdiAMP. Mutations compromising mitochondrial function and chromatin remodeling show negative epistatic interactions with all three nucleotides. In contrast, certain mutations that cause defects in chromatin modification and ribosomal protein function show positive epistasis, alleviating growth inhibition by at least two of the three nucleotides. Uniquely, cdiGMP is lethal both to cells growing by respiration on acetate and to obligately fermentative petite mutants. cdiGMP is also synthetically lethal with the ribonucleotide reductase (RNR) inhibitor hydroxyurea. Heterologous expression of the human ppGpp hydrolase Mesh1p prevented the accumulation of ppGpp in the engineered yeast and restored cell growth. Extensive in vivo interactions between bacterial signaling molecules and eukaryotic gene function occur, resulting in outcomes ranging from growth inhibition to death. cdiGMP functions through a mechanism that must be compensated by unhindered RNR activity or by functionally competent mitochondria. Mesh1p may be required for abrogating the damaging effects of ppGpp in human cells subjected to bacterial infection.IMPORTANCE During infections, pathogenic bacteria can release nucleotides into the cells of their eukaryotic hosts. These nucleotides are recognized as signals that contribute to the initiation of defensive immune responses that help the infected cells

  11. In vitro transcription and translation inhibition via DNA functionalized gold nanoparticles

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Conde, J.; de la Fuente, J. M.; Baptista, P. V.

    2010-12-01

    The use of gold nanoparticles (AuNPs) has been gaining momentum as vectors for gene silencing strategies, combining the AuNPs' ease of functionalization with DNA and/or siRNA, high loading capacity and fast uptake by target cells. Here, we used AuNP functionalized with thiolated oligonucleotides to specifically inhibit transcription in vitro, demonstrating the synergetic effect between AuNPs and a specific antisense sequence that blocks the T7 promoter region. Also, AuNPs efficiently protect the antisense oligonucleotide against nuclease degradation, which can thus retain its inhibitory potential. In addition, we demonstrate that AuNPs functionalized with a thiolated oligonucleotide complementary to the ribosome binding site and the start codon, effectively shut down in vitro translation. Together, these two approaches can provide for a simple yet robust experimental set up to test for efficient gene silencing of AuNP-DNA conjugates. What is more, these results show that appropriate functionalization of AuNPs can be used as a dual targeting approach to an enhanced control of gene expression—inhibition of both transcription and translation.

  12. Targeting of the BLT2 in chronic myeloid leukemia inhibits leukemia stem/progenitor cell function

    SciTech Connect

    Xiao, Meifang; Ai, Hongmei; Li, Tao; Rajoria, Pasupati; Shahu, Prakash; Li, Xiansong

    2016-04-15

    Imatinib, a tyrosine kinase inhibitor (TKI) has significantly improved clinical outcome for chronic myeloid leukemia (CML) patients. However, patients develop resistance when the disease progresses to the blast phase (BP) and the mechanisms are not well understood. Here we show that BCR-ABL activates BLT2 in hematopoietic stem/progenitor cells to promote leukemogenesis and this involves the p53 signaling pathway. Compared to normal bone marrow (NBM), the mRNA and protein levels of BLT2 are significantly increased in BP-CML CD34{sup +} stem/progenitor cells. This is correlated with increasing BCR-ABL expression. In contrast, knockdown of BCR-ABL or inhibition of its tyrosine kinase activity decreases Blt2 protein level. BLT2 inhibition induces apoptosis, inhibits proliferation, colony formation and self-renewal capacity of CD34{sup +} cells from TKI-resistant BP-CML patients. Importantly, the inhibitory effects of BCR-ABL TKI on CML stem/progenitor cells are further enhanced upon combination with BLT2 inhibition. We further show that BLT2 activation selectively suppresses p53 but not Wnt or BMP-mediated luciferase activity and transcription. Our results demonstrate that BLT2 is a novel pathway activated by BCR-ABL and critically involved in the resistance of BP-CML CD34{sup +} stem/progenitors to TKIs treatment. Our findings suggest that BLT2 and p53 can serve as therapeutic targets for CML treatment. - Highlights: • BCR-ABL regulates BLT2 expression to promote leukemogenesis. • BLT2 is essential to maintain CML cell function. • Activation of BLT2 suppresses p53 signaling pathway in CML cells. • Inhibition of BLT2 and BCR-ABL synergize in eliminating CML CD34{sup +} stem/progenitors.

  13. Functionalization of Titanium Alloy Surface by Graphene Nanoplatelets and Metal Oxides: Corrosion Inhibition.

    PubMed

    Mondal, Jayanta; Aarik, Lauri; Kozlova, Jekaterina; Niilisk, Ahti; Mändar, Hugo; Mäeorg, Uno; Simões, Alda; Sammelselg, Väino

    2015-09-01

    Corrosion inhibition of metallic substrates is an important and crucial step for great economical as well as environmental savings. In this paper, we introduce an extra thin effective corrosion inhibitive material having layered structure designed for protection and functionalization of Ti Grade 5 alloy substrates. The coating consists of a first layer made of thin graphene nanoplatelets, on top of which a multilayer Al2O3 and TiO2 films is applied by low-temperature atomic layer deposition. The amorphous structure of the metal oxide films was confirmed by micro-Raman and X-ray diffraction analysis. Corrosion inhibition ability of the prepared coatings was analyzed by open circuit potential, potentiodynamic plot and by voltammetric analysis, in aqueous potassium bromide solution. The open circuit potential of the graphene-metal oxide coated substrate showed much passive nature than bare substrate or graphene coated or only metal oxide coated substrates. The localized corrosion potential of the graphene-metal oxide coated, only metal oxide coated, and bare substrates were found 5.5, 3.0, and 1.1 V, respectively. In addition, corrosion current density values of the graphene-metal oxide and only metal oxide coated substrates showed much more passive nature than the bare and graphene coated substrates. Long immersion test in the salt solution further clarified the effective corrosion inhibition of the graphene-metal oxide coated substrate. The analyzed results reflect that the graphene-metal oxide films can be used to prepare better and effective corrosion inhibition coatings for the Ti Grade 5 alloy to increase their lifetime.

  14. Inhibition of bacterial adhesion and biofilm formation by dual functional textured and nitric oxide releasing surfaces.

    PubMed

    Xu, Li-Chong; Wo, Yaqi; Meyerhoff, Mark E; Siedlecki, Christopher A

    2017-03-15

    In separate prior studies, physical topographic surface modification or nitric oxide (NO) release has been demonstrated to each be an effective approach to inhibit and control bacterial adhesion and biofilm formation on polymeric surfaces. Such approaches can prevent biomaterial-associated infection without causing the antibiotic resistance of the strain. In this work, both techniques were successfully integrated and applied to a polyurethane (PU) biomaterial surface that bears ordered pillar topographies (400/400nm and 500/500nm patterns) at the top surface and a S-nitroso-N-acetylpenicillamine (SNAP, NO donor) doped sub-layer in the middle, via a soft lithography two-stage replication process. Upon placing the SNAP textured PU films into PBS at 37°C, the decomposition of SNAP within polymer film initiates NO release with a lifetime of up to 10days at flux levels >0.5×10(-10)molmin(-1)cm(-2) for a textured polyurethane layer containing 15wt% SNAP. The textured surface reduces the accessible surface area and the opportunity of bacteria-surface interaction, while the NO release from the same surface further inhibits bacterial growth and biofilm formation. Such dual functionality surfaces are shown to provide a synergistic effect on inhibition of Staphylococcus epidermidis bacterial adhesion that is significantly greater than the inhibition of bacterial adhesion achieved by either single treatment approach alone. Longer term experiments to observe biofilm formation demonstrate that the SNAP doped-textured PU surface can inhibit the biofilm formation for >28d and provide a practical approach to improve the biocompatibility of current biomimetic biomaterials and thereby reduce the risk of pathogenic infection.

  15. Inhibition of parietal cell function by human gammaglobulin containing gastric parietal cell antibodies.

    PubMed Central

    Loveridge, N; Bitensky, L; Chayen, J; Hausamen, T U; Fisher, J M; Taylor, K B; Gardner, J D; Bottazzo, G F; Doniach, D

    1980-01-01

    Parietal cell antibodies (PCA) are found in up to 90% of sera from pernicious anaemia patients but it is often stated that they could represent an epiphenomenon without being directly responsible for the achlorhydria. In the present studies a direct effect of these antibodies on the secretory function of gastric acid-secreting cells has been demonstrated in two different experimental systems. In one set of experiments IgGs containing PCA activity were shown to inhibit acid secretion specifically in the living gastric mucosa of the bull frog suspended as a diaphragm between two chambers. The other system demonstrated their inhibition of carbonic anhydrase activity in a cytochemical bioassay for human G17-gastrin, suggesting a blocking effect on the gastrin receptors in the canalicular microvilli or the cell membrane. These experiments suggest a direct pathogenic role for PCA in autoimmune fundal gastritis and in pernicious anaemia. PMID:6777102

  16. Functional mutations in mouse norepinephrine transporter reduce sensitivity to cocaine inhibition

    PubMed Central

    Wei, Hua; Hill, Erik R; Gu, Howard H.

    2009-01-01

    Summary The transporters of dopamine, norepinephrine and serotonin are molecular targets of cocaine, amphetamine, and therapeutic antidepressants. The residues involved in binding these drugs are unknown. We have performed several rounds of random and site-directed mutagenesis in the mouse norepinephrine transporter and screened for mutants with altered sensitivity to cocaine inhibition of substrate uptake. We have identified a triple mutation that retains close to wild-type transport function but displays a 37-fold decrease in cocaine sensitivity and 24-fold decrease in desipramine sensitivity. In contrast, the mutant’s sensitivities to amphetamine, methamphetamine, and methylphenidate are only slightly changed. Our data reveal critical residues contributing to the potent uptake inhibitions by these important drugs. Furthermore, this drug-resistant triple mutant can be used to generate a unique knock-in mouse line to study the role of norepinephrine transporter in the addictive effects of cocaine and the therapeutic effects of desipramine. PMID:18824182

  17. Optimization and integration of nanosilver on polycaprolactone nanofibrous mesh for bacterial inhibition and wound healing in vitro and in vivo

    PubMed Central

    Liu, Menglong; Luo, Gaoxing; Wang, Ying; He, Weifeng; Liu, Tengfei; Zhou, Daijun; Hu, Xiaohong; Xing, Malcolm; Wu, Jun

    2017-01-01

    Bacterial infection is a major hurdle to wound healing, and the overuse of antibiotics have led to global issue, such as emergence of multidrug-resistant bacteria, even “super bacteria”. On the contrary, nanosilver (NS) can kill bacteria without causing resistant bacterial strains. In this study, NS was simply generated in situ on the polycaprolactone (PCL) nanofibrous mesh using an environmentally benign and mussel-inspired dopamine (DA). Scanning electron microscopy showed that NS uniformly formed on the nanofibers of PCL mesh. Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy revealed the step-by-step preparation of pristine PCL mesh, including DA coating and NS formation, which were further verified by water contact angle changing from hydrophobic to hydrophilic. To optimize the NS dose, the antibacterial activity of PCL/NS against Staphylococcus aureus, Escherichia coli and Acinetobacter baumannii was detected by bacterial suspension assay, and the cytotoxicity of NS was evaluated using cellular morphology observation and Cell Counting Kit-8 (CCK8) assay. Then, inductively coupled plasma atomic emission spectrometry exhibited that the optimized PCL/NS had a safe and sustained silver release. Moreover, PCL/NS could effectively inhibit bacterial infection in an infectious murine full-thickness skin wound model. As demonstrated by the enhanced level of proliferating cell nuclear antigen (PCNA) in keratinocytes and longer length of neo-formed epidermis, PCL/NS accelerated wound healing by promoting re-epithelialization via enhancing keratinocyte proliferation in infectious wounds. PMID:28979121

  18. [Inhibition of Staphylococcus epidermidis adhesion on titanium surface with bioactive water-soluble copolymers bearing sulfonate, phosphate or carboxylate functions].

    PubMed

    Poussard, L; Ouédraogo, C P; Pavon-Djavid, G; Migonney, V

    2012-04-01

    Implanted prostheses are sometimes subject to bacterial infections, which can threat their benefit rule on a long-term basis. Various methods are studied to fight against these infections. Among them, the grafting of bioactive polymers onto the prosthesis surface shows up as a promising way to the problem of infections. This work presents the influence of various water-soluble bioactive polymers on the inhibition of the Staphylococcus epidermidis adhesion on the titanium samples surfaces initially preadsorbed with various proteins. Whatever the studied protein is, it is shown that the bioactive polymer containing sulfonate functions generates an inhibition of the adhesion of Staphylococcus epidermidis. For a plasma preadsorption, the inhibition rate rises up to 68% when the concentration of sulfonate function is 2.5μmol/L. Titanium surfaces grafted with the bioactive polymer were also tested. We find an inhibitive activity of the adhesion close to that of the previous case. These preliminary results can point up a clinical interest in the fight against the medical devices infection, because they highlight a clear local effect of S. epidermidis adhesion inhibition. Copolymers containing other functional groups (phosphate or carboxylate) were dissolved in a bacterial suspension to monitor the influence of the composition on the adhesion inhibition. Their inhibition rates are not significantly lower than those of pNaSS homopolymers, as much as the sulfonate function proportion remains higher than 50%. Thus, the sulfonate function is the main responsible for the inhibition of the S. epidermidis adhesion.

  19. c-Cbl Inhibition Improves Cardiac function and Survival in Response to Myocardial Ischemia

    PubMed Central

    Rafiq, Khadija; Kolpakov, Mikhail A; Seqqat, Rachid; Guo, Jianfen; Guo, Xinji; Qi, Zhao; Yu, Daohai; Mohapatra, Bhopal; Zutshi, Neha; An, Wei; Band, Hamid; Sanjay, Archana; Houser, Steven R; Sabri, Abdelkarim

    2014-01-01

    Background The proto-oncogene Casitas b-lineage lymphoma (c-Cbl) is an adaptor protein with an intrinsic E3 ubiquitin ligase activity that targets receptor and non-receptor tyrosine kinases, resulting in their ubiquitination and down-regulation. However, the function of c-Cbl in the control of cardiac function is currently unknown. In this study, we examined the role of c-Cbl in myocyte death and cardiac function after myocardial ischemia. Methods and Results We show increased c-Cbl expression in human ischemic and dilated cardiomyopathy hearts and in response to pathological stress stimuli in mice. c-Cbl deficient mice demonstrated a more robust functional recovery after myocardial ischemia reperfusion injury, as well as significantly reduced myocyte apoptosis and improved cardiac function. Ubiquitination and downregulation of key survival c-Cbl targets, epidermal growth factor receptors and focal adhesion kinase, were significantly reduced in c-Cbl knockout mice. Inhibition of c-Cbl expression or its ubiquitin ligase activity in cardiac myocytes offered protection against H2O2 stress. Interestingly, c-Cbl deletion reduced the risk of death and increased cardiac functional recovery after chronic myocardial ischemia. This beneficial effect of c-Cbl deletion was associated with enhanced neoangiogenesis and increased expression of vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF)-a and VEGF receptor type 2 in the infarcted region. Conclusions c-Cbl activation promotes myocyte apoptosis, inhibits angiogenesis and causes adverse cardiac remodeling after myocardial infarction. These findings point to c-Cbl as a potential therapeutic target for the maintenance of cardiac function and remodeling after myocardial ischemia. PMID:24583314

  20. Inhibition of differentiation and function of osteoclasts by dimethyl sulfoxide (DMSO).

    PubMed

    Yang, Chunxi; Madhu, Vedavathi; Thomas, Candace; Yang, Xinlin; Du, Xeujun; Dighe, Abhijit S; Cui, Quanjun

    2015-12-01

    Dimethyl sulfoxide (DMSO) is an FDA-approved organosulfur solvent that is reported to have therapeutic value in osteoarthritis and osteopenia. DMSO is used as a cryoprotectant for the cryopreservation of bone grafts and mesenchymal stem cells which are later used for bone repair. It is also used as a solvent in the preparation of various scaffolds used for bone tissue engineering purposes. DMSO has been reported to inhibit osteoclast formation in vitro but the mechanism involved has remained elusive. We investigated the effect of DMSO on osteoclast differentiation and function using a conventional model system of RAW 264.7 cells. The differentiation of RAW 264.7 cells was induced by adding 50 ng/ml RANKL and the effect of DMSO (0.01 and 1% v/v) on RANKL-induced osteoclastogenesis was investigated. Addition of 1% DMSO significantly inhibited RANKL-induced formation of TRAP+, multinucleated, mature osteoclasts and osteoclast late-stage precursors (c-Kit(-) c-Fms(+) Mac-1(+) RANK(+)). While DMSO did not inhibit proliferation per se, it did inhibit the effect of RANKL on proliferation of RAW 264.7 cells. Key genes related to osteoclast function (TRAP, Integrin αVβ3, Cathepsin K and MMP9) were significantly down-regulated by DMSO. RANKL-induced expression of RANK gene was significantly reduced in the presence of DMSO. Our data, and reports from other investigators, that DMSO enhances osteoblastic differentiation of mesenchymal stem cells and also prevents bone loss in ovarietcomized rats, suggest that DMSO has tremendous potential in the treatment of osteoporosis and bone diseases arising from uncontrolled activities of the osteoclasts.

  1. Pharmacotherapy Impacts Functional Connectivity Among Affective Circuits During Response Inhibition in Pediatric Mania

    PubMed Central

    Pavuluri, Mani N.; Ellis, James; Wegbreit, Ezra; Passarotti, Alessandra M.; Stevens, Michael C.

    2011-01-01

    OBJECTIVE The aim of the current study was to determine the influence of implicated affective circuitry disturbance in pediatric bipolar disorder (PBD) on behavioral inhibition. The differential influence of an antipsychotic and an anti-epileptic medication on the functional connectivity across affective and cognitive neural operations in PBD was examined.. METHODS This was a six-week double blind randomized fMRI trial of risperidone plus placebo vs. divalproex plus placebo for patients with mania (n=22; 13.6±2.5 years). Healthy controls (HC; n=14, 14.5±2.8 years) were also scanned for normative comparison. Participants performed a response inhibition fMRI task where a motor response, already ‘on the way’ to execution, had to be voluntarily inhibited on trials where a stop signal was presented. Independent component analysis was used to map functional connectivity across the whole brain. RESULTS While there were no behavioral differences between the groups at pre- or post-drug trial, there was significant improvement on manic symptoms in the patient groups. All participants engaged an Evaluative Affective Circuit (EAC: bilateral inferior frontal gyrus, middle frontal gyrus, anterior cingulate cortex (ACC), middle temporal gyrus, insulae, caudate and putamen) and a Reactive Affective Circuit (RAC: bilateral occipital cortex, amygdala, medial frontal gyrus and insula) during task performance. Within the EAC, post treatment and relative to HC, greater engagement was seen in left insula in risperidone group and left subgenual ACC in divalproex group. Within the RAC, greater baseline amygdala connectivity in patients did not alter with treatment. CONCLUSION EAC and RAC are two key circuits that moderate emotional influence on response inhibition in PBD. Risperidone and divalproex differentially engage the EAC. Limited change in amygdala activity with treatment in all patients indicates a likely trait deficit in PBD. PMID:22004983

  2. Inhibition of Protease-Epithelial Sodium Channel Signaling Improves Mucociliary Function in Cystic Fibrosis Airways.

    PubMed

    Reihill, James A; Walker, Brian; Hamilton, Robert A; Ferguson, Timothy E G; Elborn, J Stuart; Stutts, M Jackson; Harvey, Brian J; Saint-Criq, Vinciane; Hendrick, Siobhan M; Martin, S Lorraine

    2016-09-15

    In cystic fibrosis (CF) a reduction in airway surface liquid (ASL) height compromises mucociliary clearance, favoring mucus plugging and chronic bacterial infection. Inhibitors of the epithelial sodium channel (ENaC) have therapeutic potential in CF airways to reduce hyperstimulated sodium and fluid absorption to levels that can restore airway hydration. To determine whether a novel compound (QUB-TL1) designed to inhibit protease/ENaC signaling in CF airways restores ASL volume and mucociliary function. Protease activity was measured using fluorogenic activity assays. Differentiated primary airway epithelial cell cultures (F508del homozygotes) were used to determined ENaC activity (Ussing chamber recordings), ASL height (confocal microscopy), and mucociliary function (by tracking the surface flow of apically applied microbeads). Cell toxicity was measured using a lactate dehydrogenase assay. QUB-TL1 inhibits extracellularly located channel activating proteases (CAPs), including prostasin, matriptase, and furin, the activities of which are observed at excessive levels at the apical surface of CF airway epithelial cells. QUB-TL1-mediated CAP inhibition results in diminished ENaC-mediated Na(+) absorption in CF airway epithelial cells caused by internalization of a prominent pool of cleaved (active) ENaCγ from the cell surface. Importantly, diminished ENaC activity correlates with improved airway hydration status and mucociliary clearance. We further demonstrate QUB-TL1-mediated furin inhibition, which is in contrast to other serine protease inhibitors (camostat mesylate and aprotinin), affords protection against neutrophil elastase-mediated ENaC activation and Pseudomonas aeruginosa exotoxin A-induced cell death. QUB-TL1 corrects aberrant CAP activities, providing a mechanism to delay or prevent the development of CF lung disease in a manner independent of CF transmembrane conductance regulator mutation.

  3. Optimization of the functional domain of flat plate collectors

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ritoux, G.; Irigaray, J.-L.

    1981-12-01

    The variations of the extracted heat flux as function of the temperature of the heat transfer fluid in black and selective surface solar collectors are examined. The heat flux is calculated based on the difference of the initial to the stage of thermal equilibrium of the fluid. A nonlinear system of equations is developed and solved by a fast, iterative method to obtain the equilibrium temperatures. It is found that more flux can be extracted from the solar heat by a collector with only one glass cover than with more than one cover. The captured flux is proportional to the coefficient of transmission of the glass coverings, to the coefficient of absorption of the collector, and to the incident flux. Black painted surfaces were more absorbent than selective surfaces, and highest collection efficiencies were displayed by low temperature collectors. Charts of effective uses of the respective types of collectors for heating swimming pools, hot water, home heat, and for refrigeration and air-conditioning are provided.

  4. Optimizing high performance computing workflow for protein functional annotation.

    PubMed

    Stanberry, Larissa; Rekepalli, Bhanu; Liu, Yuan; Giblock, Paul; Higdon, Roger; Montague, Elizabeth; Broomall, William; Kolker, Natali; Kolker, Eugene

    2014-09-10

    Functional annotation of newly sequenced genomes is one of the major challenges in modern biology. With modern sequencing technologies, the protein sequence universe is rapidly expanding. Newly sequenced bacterial genomes alone contain over 7.5 million proteins. The rate of data generation has far surpassed that of protein annotation. The volume of protein data makes manual curation infeasible, whereas a high compute cost limits the utility of existing automated approaches. In this work, we present an improved and optmized automated workflow to enable large-scale protein annotation. The workflow uses high performance computing architectures and a low complexity classification algorithm to assign proteins into existing clusters of orthologous groups of proteins. On the basis of the Position-Specific Iterative Basic Local Alignment Search Tool the algorithm ensures at least 80% specificity and sensitivity of the resulting classifications. The workflow utilizes highly scalable parallel applications for classification and sequence alignment. Using Extreme Science and Engineering Discovery Environment supercomputers, the workflow processed 1,200,000 newly sequenced bacterial proteins. With the rapid expansion of the protein sequence universe, the proposed workflow will enable scientists to annotate big genome data.

  5. Optimizing high performance computing workflow for protein functional annotation

    PubMed Central

    Stanberry, Larissa; Rekepalli, Bhanu; Liu, Yuan; Giblock, Paul; Higdon, Roger; Montague, Elizabeth; Broomall, William; Kolker, Natali; Kolker, Eugene

    2014-01-01

    Functional annotation of newly sequenced genomes is one of the major challenges in modern biology. With modern sequencing technologies, the protein sequence universe is rapidly expanding. Newly sequenced bacterial genomes alone contain over 7.5 million proteins. The rate of data generation has far surpassed that of protein annotation. The volume of protein data makes manual curation infeasible, whereas a high compute cost limits the utility of existing automated approaches. In this work, we present an improved and optmized automated workflow to enable large-scale protein annotation. The workflow uses high performance computing architectures and a low complexity classification algorithm to assign proteins into existing clusters of orthologous groups of proteins. On the basis of the Position-Specific Iterative Basic Local Alignment Search Tool the algorithm ensures at least 80% specificity and sensitivity of the resulting classifications. The workflow utilizes highly scalable parallel applications for classification and sequence alignment. Using Extreme Science and Engineering Discovery Environment supercomputers, the workflow processed 1,200,000 newly sequenced bacterial proteins. With the rapid expansion of the protein sequence universe, the proposed workflow will enable scientists to annotate big genome data. PMID:25313296

  6. Estimating the economic optimal rate of nitrogen fertilizer: a battle of functional form

    USDA-ARS?s Scientific Manuscript database

    Agricultural producers make fertilizer decisions based on recommendations from extension personnel and/or consultants established by the best available data; however, optimal nitrogen (N) recommendations can vary depending on the functional form used to estimate yield response functions. Applying to...

  7. A technique for locating function roots and for satisfying equality constraints in optimization

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Sobieszczanski-Sobieski, Jaroslaw

    1991-01-01

    A new technique for locating simultaneous roots of a set of functions is described. The technique is based on the property of the Kreisselmeier-Steinhauser function which descends to a minimum at each root location. It is shown that the ensuing algorithm may be merged into any nonlinear programming method for solving optimization problems with equality constraints.

  8. A technique for locating function roots and for satisfying equality constraints in optimization

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Sobieszczanski-Sobieski, J.

    1992-01-01

    A new technique for locating simultaneous roots of a set of functions is described. The technique is based on the property of the Kreisselmeier-Steinhauser function which descends to a minimum at each root location. It is shown that the ensuing algorithm may be merged into any nonlinear programming method for solving optimization problems with equality constraints.

  9. Perceptually optimized gain function for cochlear implant signal-to-noise ratio based noise reduction.

    PubMed

    Mauger, Stefan J; Dawson, Pam W; Hersbach, Adam A

    2012-01-01

    Noise reduction in cochlear implants has achieved significant speech perception improvements through spectral subtraction and signal-to-noise ratio based noise reduction techniques. Current methods use gain functions derived through mathematical optimization or motivated by normal listening psychoacoustic experiments. Although these gain functions have been able to improve speech perception, recent studies have indicated that they are not optimal for cochlear implant noise reduction. This study systematically investigates cochlear implant recipients' speech perception and listening preference of noise reduction with a range of gain functions. Results suggest an advantageous gain function and show that gain functions currently used for noise reduction are not optimal for cochlear implant recipients. Using the cochlear implant optimised gain function, a 27% improvement over the current advanced combination encoder (ACE) stimulation strategy in speech weighted noise and a 7% improvement over current noise reduction strategies were observed in babble noise conditions. The optimized gain function was also most preferred by cochlear implant recipients. The CI specific gain function derived from this study can be easily incorporated into existing noise reduction strategies, to further improve listening performance for CI recipients in challenging environments.

  10. Admitting the Inadmissible: Adjoint Formulation for Incomplete Cost Functionals in Aerodynamic Optimization

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Arian, Eyal; Salas, Manuel D.

    1997-01-01

    We derive the adjoint equations for problems in aerodynamic optimization which are improperly considered as "inadmissible." For example, a cost functional which depends on the density, rather than on the pressure, is considered "inadmissible" for an optimization problem governed by the Euler equations. We show that for such problems additional terms should be included in the Lagrangian functional when deriving the adjoint equations. These terms are obtained from the restriction of the interior PDE to the control surface. Demonstrations of the explicit derivation of the adjoint equations for "inadmissible" cost functionals are given for the potential, Euler, and Navier-Stokes equations.

  11. Housefly larvae hydrolysate: orthogonal optimization of hydrolysis, antioxidant activity, amino acid composition and functional properties.

    PubMed

    Wang, Juan; Wang, Yansheng; Dang, Xiangli; Zheng, Xiaoxia; Zhang, Wenqing

    2013-05-17

    Antioxidant, one of the most important food additives, is widely used in food industry. At present, antioxidant is mostly produced by chemical synthesis, which would accumulate to be pathogenic. Therefore, a great interest has been developed to identify and use natural antioxidants. It was showed that there are a lot of antioxidative peptides in protein hydrolysates, possessing strong capacity of inhibiting peroxidation of macro-biomolecular and scavenging free redicals in vivo. Enzymatic hydrolysis used for preparation of antioxidative peptides is a new hot-spot in the field of natural antioxidants. It reacts under mild conditions, with accurate site-specific degradation, good repeatability and few damages to biological activity of protein. Substrates for enzymatic hydrolysis are usually plants and aqua-animals. Insects are also gaining attention because of their rich protein and resource. Antioxidative peptides are potential to be exploited as new natural antioxidant and functional food. There is a huge potential market in medical and cosmetic field as well. Protein hydrolysate with antioxidant activity was prepared from housefly larvae, by a two-step hydrolysis. Through orthogonal optimization of the hydrolysis conditions, the degree of hydrolysis was determined to be approximately 60%. Fractionated hydrolysate at 25 mg/mL, 2.5 mg/mL and 1 mg/mL exhibited approximately 50%, 60% and 50% of scavenging capacity on superoxide radicals, 1, 1-Diphenyl-2-picrylhydrazyl radicals and hydroxyl radicals, respectively. Hydrolysate did not exhibit substantial ion chelation. Using a linoneic peroxidation system, the inhibition activity of hydrolysate at 20 mg/mL was close to that of 20 μg/mL tertiary butylhydroquinone, suggesting a potential application of hydrolysate in the oil industry as an efficient antioxidant. The lyophilized hydrolysate presented almost 100% solubility at pH 3-pH 9, and maintained nearly 100% activity at pH 5-pH 8 at 0°C- 4°C and room

  12. Housefly larvae hydrolysate: orthogonal optimization of hydrolysis, antioxidant activity, amino acid composition and functional properties

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    Background Antioxidant, one of the most important food additives, is widely used in food industry. At present, antioxidant is mostly produced by chemical synthesis, which would accumulate to be pathogenic. Therefore, a great interest has been developed to identify and use natural antioxidants. It was showed that there are a lot of antioxidative peptides in protein hydrolysates, possessing strong capacity of inhibiting peroxidation of macro-biomolecular and scavenging free redicals in vivo. Enzymatic hydrolysis used for preparation of antioxidative peptides is a new hot-spot in the field of natural antioxidants. It reacts under mild conditions, with accurate site-specific degradation, good repeatability and few damages to biological activity of protein. Substrates for enzymatic hydrolysis are usually plants and aqua-animals. Insects are also gaining attention because of their rich protein and resource. Antioxidative peptides are potential to be exploited as new natural antioxidant and functional food. There is a huge potential market in medical and cosmetic field as well. Result Protein hydrolysate with antioxidant activity was prepared from housefly larvae, by a two-step hydrolysis. Through orthogonal optimization of the hydrolysis conditions, the degree of hydrolysis was determined to be approximately 60%. Fractionated hydrolysate at 25 mg/mL, 2.5 mg/mL and 1 mg/mL exhibited approximately 50%, 60% and 50% of scavenging capacity on superoxide radicals, 1, 1-Diphenyl-2-picrylhydrazyl radicals and hydroxyl radicals, respectively. Hydrolysate did not exhibit substantial ion chelation. Using a linoneic peroxidation system, the inhibition activity of hydrolysate at 20 mg/mL was close to that of 20 μg/mL tertiary butylhydroquinone, suggesting a potential application of hydrolysate in the oil industry as an efficient antioxidant. The lyophilized hydrolysate presented almost 100% solubility at pH 3-pH 9, and maintained nearly 100% activity at pH 5-pH 8 at 0

  13. CONORBIT: constrained optimization by radial basis function interpolation in trust regions

    SciTech Connect

    Regis, Rommel G.; Wild, Stefan M.

    2016-09-26

    Here, this paper presents CONORBIT (CONstrained Optimization by Radial Basis function Interpolation in Trust regions), a derivative-free algorithm for constrained black-box optimization where the objective and constraint functions are computationally expensive. CONORBIT employs a trust-region framework that uses interpolating radial basis function (RBF) models for the objective and constraint functions, and is an extension of the ORBIT algorithm. It uses a small margin for the RBF constraint models to facilitate the generation of feasible iterates, and extensive numerical tests confirm that such a margin is helpful in improving performance. CONORBIT is compared with other algorithms on 27 test problems, a chemical process optimization problem, and an automotive application. Numerical results show that CONORBIT performs better than COBYLA, a sequential penalty derivative-free method, an augmented Lagrangian method, a direct search method, and another RBF-based algorithm on the test problems and on the automotive application.

  14. CONORBIT: constrained optimization by radial basis function interpolation in trust regions

    DOE PAGES

    Regis, Rommel G.; Wild, Stefan M.

    2016-09-26

    Here, this paper presents CONORBIT (CONstrained Optimization by Radial Basis function Interpolation in Trust regions), a derivative-free algorithm for constrained black-box optimization where the objective and constraint functions are computationally expensive. CONORBIT employs a trust-region framework that uses interpolating radial basis function (RBF) models for the objective and constraint functions, and is an extension of the ORBIT algorithm. It uses a small margin for the RBF constraint models to facilitate the generation of feasible iterates, and extensive numerical tests confirm that such a margin is helpful in improving performance. CONORBIT is compared with other algorithms on 27 test problems, amore » chemical process optimization problem, and an automotive application. Numerical results show that CONORBIT performs better than COBYLA, a sequential penalty derivative-free method, an augmented Lagrangian method, a direct search method, and another RBF-based algorithm on the test problems and on the automotive application.« less

  15. Solvability of some partial functional integrodifferential equations with finite delay and optimal controls in Banach spaces.

    PubMed

    Ezzinbi, Khalil; Ndambomve, Patrice

    2016-01-01

    In this work, we consider the control system governed by some partial functional integrodifferential equations with finite delay in Banach spaces. We assume that the undelayed part admits a resolvent operator in the sense of Grimmer. Firstly, some suitable conditions are established to guarantee the existence and uniqueness of mild solutions for a broad class of partial functional integrodifferential infinite dimensional control systems. Secondly, it is proved that, under generally mild conditions of cost functional, the associated Lagrange problem has an optimal solution, and that for each optimal solution there is a minimizing sequence of the problem that converges to the optimal solution with respect to the trajectory, the control, and the functional in appropriate topologies. Our results extend and complement many other important results in the literature. Finally, a concrete example of application is given to illustrate the effectiveness of our main results.

  16. Functional roles of short-term synaptic plasticity with an emphasis on inhibition.

    PubMed

    Anwar, Haroon; Li, Xinping; Bucher, Dirk; Nadim, Farzan

    2017-04-01

    Almost all synapses show activity-dependent dynamic changes in efficacy. Numerous studies have explored the mechanisms underlying different forms of short-term synaptic plasticity (STP), but the functional role of STP for circuit output and animal behavior is less understood. This is particularly true for inhibitory synapses that can play widely varied roles in circuit activity. We review recent findings on the role of synaptic STP in sensory, pattern generating, thalamocortical, and hippocampal networks, with a focus on synaptic inhibition. These studies show a variety of functions including sensory adaptation and gating, dynamic gain control and rhythm generation. Because experimental manipulations of STP are difficult and nonspecific, a clear demonstration of STP function often requires a combination of experimental and computational techniques. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  17. OPTIMIZING LINKED PERCEPTUAL CLASS FORMATION AND TRANSFER OF FUNCTION

    PubMed Central

    Fields, Lanny; Garruto, Michelle

    2009-01-01

    A linked perceptual class consists of two distinct perceptual classes, A′ and B′, the members of which have become related to each other. For example, a linked perceptual class might be composed of many pictures of a woman (one perceptual class) and the sounds of that woman's voice (the other perceptual class). In this case, any sound of the woman's voice would occasion the selection of any picture of the woman and vice versa. In addition, after learning to name the woman in the presence of one picture, that name would be uttered when presented with all of the images of the woman's face and all of the sounds of her voice. This study involved 15 participants and sought to (a) maximize the percentage of participants who formed linked perceptual classes, and (b) determine whether those classes acted as transfer networks, that is, whether the discriminative function of one class member would generalize to other members of the class and not to members of a different class. The rate of emergence of each linked perceptual class was maximized by establishing a single class-linking conditional relation between the clearest member of one class used as a sample stimulus and the most ambiguous member of the other class used as a comparison stimulus. Class formation was demonstrated using the serial and programmed presentation of A′–B′ probes that consisted of untrained pairs of stimuli drawn from the A′ and B′ classes. Most participants showed immediate emergence of the two linked perceptual classes. The remaining participants showed delayed emergence following a second exposure to each originally error-producing probes. Once the linked perceptual classes had emerged, a differential response to a specific member of one perceptual class generalized mostly or completely to the other members of that linked class and rarely, if ever, to members of the other linked class. Thus, generalization did not depend on the specific class members that had been used for

  18. High fat-diet and saturated fatty acid palmitate inhibits IGF-1 function in chondrocytes.

    PubMed

    Nazli, S A; Loeser, R F; Chubinskaya, S; Willey, J S; Yammani, R R

    2017-09-01

    Insulin-like growth factor-1 (IGF-1) promotes matrix synthesis and cell survival in cartilage. Chondrocytes from aged and osteoarthritic cartilage have a reduced response to IGF-1. The purpose of this study was to determine the effect of free fatty acids (FFA) present in a high-fat diet on IGF-1 function in cartilage and the role of endoplasmic reticulum (ER) stress. C57BL/6 male mice were maintained on either a high-fat (60% kcal from fat) or a low-fat (10% kcal from fat) diet for 4 months. Mice were then sacrificed; femoral head cartilage caps were collected and treated with IGF-1 to measure proteoglycan (PG) synthesis. Cultured human chondrocytes were treated with 500 μM FFA palmitate or oleate, followed by stimulation with (100 ng/ml) IGF-1 overnight to measure CHOP (a protein marker for ER stress) and PG synthesis. Human chondrocytes were pre-treated with palmitate or 1 mM 4-phenyl butyric acid (PBA) or 1 μM C-Jun N terminal Kinase (JNK) inhibitor, and IGF-1 function (PG synthesis and signaling) was measured. Cartilage explants from mice on the high fat-diet showed reduced IGF-1 mediated PG synthesis compared to a low-fat group. Treatment of human chondrocytes with palmitate induced expression of CHOP, activated JNK and inhibited IGF-1 function. PBA, a small molecule chemical chaperone that alleviates ER stress rescued IGF-1 function and a JNK inhibitor rescued IGF-1 signaling. Palmitate-induced ER stress inhibited IGF-1 function in chondrocytes/cartilage via activating the mitogen-activated protein (MAP) kinase JNK. This is the first study to demonstrate that ER stress is metabolic factor that regulates IGF-1 function in chondrocytes. Copyright © 2017 Osteoarthritis Research Society International. Published by Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  19. Contributions to the study of optimal biphasic pulse shapes for functional electric stimulation: an analytical approach using the excitation functional.

    PubMed

    Suárez-Antola, Roberto

    2007-01-01

    An analytical approach to threshold problems in functional electric stimulation and pacing is proposed, framed in the concept of excitation functional. This functional can be applied to nerve, muscle and myocardium stimulation by external electrodes. An optimal shape for a biphasic pulse is found, using the criteria of minimum energy dissipated in biological tissues and total charge compensation between the excitatory cathodic and the compensatory anodic phases. The method can be further developed and applied to other threshold problems in functional electric stimulation and pacing.

  20. Processing and optimization of functional ceramic coatings and inorganic nanomaterials

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Nyutu, Edward Kennedy G.

    Processing of functional inorganic materials including zero (0-D) dimensional (e.g. nanoparticles), 1-D (nanorods, nanofibers), and 2-D (films/coating) structures is of fundamental and technological interest. This research will have two major sections. The first part of section one focuses on the deposition of silicon dioxide onto a pre-deposited molybdenum disilicide coating on molybdenum substrates for both high (>1000 °C) and moderate (500-600 °C) temperature oxidation protection. Chemical vapor deposition (CVD/MOCVD) techniques will be utilized to deposit the metal suicide and oxide coatings. The focus of this study will be to establish optimum deposition conditions and evaluate the metal oxide coating as oxidation - thermal barriers for Mo substrates under both isothermal (static) and cyclic oxidation conditions. The second part of this section will involve a systematic evaluation of a boron nitride (BN) interface coating prepared by chemical vapor deposition. Ceramic matrix composites (CMCs) are prospective candidates for high (>1000 °C) temperature applications and fiber- matrix interfaces are the dominant design parameters in ceramic matrix composites (CMCs). An important goal of the study is to determine a set of process parameters, which would define a boron nitride (BN) interface coating by a chemical vapor deposition (CVD) process with respect to coating. In the first part of the second section, we will investigate a new approach to synthesize ultrafine metal oxides that combines microwave heating and an in-situ ultrasonic mixing of two or more liquid precursors with a tubular flow reactor. Different metal oxides such as nickel ferrite and zinc aluminate spinels will be studied. The synthesis of metal oxides were investigated in order to study the effects of the nozzle and microwave (INM process) on the purity, composition, and particle size of the resulting powders. The second part of this research section involves a study of microwave frequency

  1. Reducing GABAA-mediated inhibition improves forelimb motor function after focal cortical stroke in mice

    PubMed Central

    Alia, Claudia; Spalletti, Cristina; Lai, Stefano; Panarese, Alessandro; Micera, Silvestro; Caleo, Matteo

    2016-01-01

    A deeper understanding of post-stroke plasticity is critical to devise more effective pharmacological and rehabilitative treatments. The GABAergic system is one of the key modulators of neuronal plasticity, and plays an important role in the control of “critical periods” during brain development. Here, we report a key role for GABAergic inhibition in functional restoration following ischemia in the adult mouse forelimb motor cortex. After stroke, the majority of cortical sites in peri-infarct areas evoked simultaneous movements of forelimb, hindlimb and tail, consistent with a loss of inhibitory signalling. Accordingly, we found a delayed decrease in several GABAergic markers that accompanied cortical reorganization. To test whether reductions in GABAergic signalling were causally involved in motor improvements, we treated animals during an early post-stroke period with a benzodiazepine inverse agonist, which impairs GABAA receptor function. We found that hampering GABAA signalling led to significant restoration of function in general motor tests (i.e., gridwalk and pellet reaching tasks), with no significant impact on the kinematics of reaching movements. Improvements were persistent as they remained detectable about three weeks after treatment. These data demonstrate a key role for GABAergic inhibition in limiting motor improvements after cortical stroke. PMID:27897203

  2. Dipeptidyl peptidase-4 inhibition improves left ventricular function in chronic kidney disease.

    PubMed

    Connelly, Kim A; Bowskill, Bridgit B; Advani, Suzanne L; Thai, Kerri; Chen, Li-Hao; Kabir, M Golam; Gilbert, Richard E; Advani, Andrew

    2014-06-01

    Heart failure with preserved ejection fraction (HFpEF) is a common comorbidity in people with chronic kidney disease (CKD) for which no evidence-based treatment currently exists. Recently, a group of anti-hyperglycemic agents used in the treatment of Type 2 diabetes, termed incretin-based therapies, have come under scrutiny for their putative glucose-independent effects on cardiac function. In the present study, the actions of the dipeptidyl peptidase-4 (DPP-4) inhibitor class of incretin-based therapy in preventing HFpEF induced by chronic renal impairment were investigated. Sham-operated and subtotally-nephrectomized rats were randomized to receive the DPP-4 inhibitors, linagliptin or sitagliptin for seven weeks before assessment of cardiac and renal structure and function. Analysis of pressure-volume loops revealed that both linagliptin and sitagliptin prevented the development of cardiac diastolic dysfunction, with cardiac collagen I synthesis also being reduced by DPP-4 inhibition. These attenuating cardiac effects occurred without change in renal function or structure where, in the doses administered, neither linagliptin nor sitagliptin affected GFR decline, proteinuria, renal fibrosis or the increased urinary excretion of biomarkers of renal toxicity. The beneficial cardiac effects of DPP-4 inhibition, in the absence of a concurrent improvement in renal dysfunction, raise the possibility that these agents may confer cardiovascular advantages in the CKD population.

  3. Optimism

    PubMed Central

    Carver, Charles S.; Scheier, Michael F.; Segerstrom, Suzanne C.

    2010-01-01

    Optimism is an individual difference variable that reflects the extent to which people hold generalized favorable expectancies for their future. Higher levels of optimism have been related prospectively to better subjective well-being in times of adversity or difficulty (i.e., controlling for previous well-being). Consistent with such findings, optimism has been linked to higher levels of engagement coping and lower levels of avoidance, or disengagement, coping. There is evidence that optimism is associated with taking proactive steps to protect one's health, whereas pessimism is associated with health-damaging behaviors. Consistent with such findings, optimism is also related to indicators of better physical health. The energetic, task-focused approach that optimists take to goals also relates to benefits in the socioeconomic world. Some evidence suggests that optimism relates to more persistence in educational efforts and to higher later income. Optimists also appear to fare better than pessimists in relationships. Although there are instances in which optimism fails to convey an advantage, and instances in which it may convey a disadvantage, those instances are relatively rare. In sum, the behavioral patterns of optimists appear to provide models of living for others to learn from. PMID:20170998

  4. Non-linear global optimization via parameterization and inverse function approximation: an artificial neural networks approach.

    PubMed

    Mayorga, René V; Arriaga, Mariano

    2007-10-01

    In this article, a novel technique for non-linear global optimization is presented. The main goal is to find the optimal global solution of non-linear problems avoiding sub-optimal local solutions or inflection points. The proposed technique is based on a two steps concept: properly keep decreasing the value of the objective function, and calculating the corresponding independent variables by approximating its inverse function. The decreasing process can continue even after reaching local minima and, in general, the algorithm stops when converging to solutions near the global minimum. The implementation of the proposed technique by conventional numerical methods may require a considerable computational effort on the approximation of the inverse function. Thus, here a novel Artificial Neural Network (ANN) approach is implemented to reduce the computational requirements of the proposed optimization technique. This approach is successfully tested on some highly non-linear functions possessing several local minima. The results obtained demonstrate that the proposed approach compares favorably over some current conventional numerical (Matlab functions) methods, and other non-conventional (Evolutionary Algorithms, Simulated Annealing) optimization methods.

  5. [Erythropoiesis and functional characteristics in bone marrow erythroblastic islets during stimulated adn inhibited erythropoiesis].

    PubMed

    Rassokhin, A G; Kruglov, D G; Zakharov, Iu M

    2000-01-01

    When erythropiesis is stimulated (acute blood loss) or inhibited (posttransfusion polycythemia), there are early changes in the cytochemical values of erythroblastic islets (EI): in the levels of acid and neutral glucoconjugates and in the activity of nonspecific esterase. A close correlation has been found between the erythropoiesis in EI and its functional characteristics. It is concluded that central macrophages play the key role in the modulation of EI erythropoiesis. It is suggested that EI macrophages are involved in the provision of bioenergetic and reparative processes in EI.

  6. α-Synuclein Fibrils Exhibit Gain of Toxic Function, Promoting Tau Aggregation and Inhibiting Microtubule Assembly*

    PubMed Central

    Oikawa, Takayuki; Nonaka, Takashi; Terada, Makoto; Tamaoka, Akira; Hisanaga, Shin-ichi; Hasegawa, Masato

    2016-01-01

    α-Synuclein is the major component of Lewy bodies and Lewy neurites in Parkinson disease and dementia with Lewy bodies and of glial cytoplasmic inclusions in multiple system atrophy. It has been suggested that α-synuclein fibrils or intermediate protofibrils in the process of fibril formation may have a toxic effect on neuronal cells. In this study, we investigated the ability of soluble monomeric α-synuclein to promote microtubule assembly and the effects of conformational changes of α-synuclein on Tau-promoted microtubule assembly. In marked contrast to previous findings, monomeric α-synuclein had no effect on microtubule polymerization. However, both α-synuclein fibrils and protofibrils inhibited Tau-promoted microtubule assembly. The inhibitory effect of α-synuclein fibrils was greater than that of the protofibrils. Dot blot overlay assay and spin-down techniques revealed that α-synuclein fibrils bind to Tau and inhibit microtubule assembly by depleting the Tau available for microtubule polymerization. Using various deletion mutants of α-synuclein and Tau, the acidic C-terminal region of α-synuclein and the basic central region of Tau were identified as regions involved in the binding. Furthermore, introduction of α-synuclein fibrils into cultured cells overexpressing Tau protein induced Tau aggregation. These results raise the possibility that α-synuclein fibrils interact with Tau, inhibit its function to stabilize microtubules, and also promote Tau aggregation, leading to dysfunction of neuronal cells. PMID:27226637

  7. Protein-tyrosine phosphatase activity regulates osteoclast formation and function: inhibition by alendronate.

    PubMed Central

    Schmidt, A; Rutledge, S J; Endo, N; Opas, E E; Tanaka, H; Wesolowski, G; Leu, C T; Huang, Z; Ramachandaran, C; Rodan, S B; Rodan, G A

    1996-01-01

    Alendronate (ALN), an aminobisphosphonate used in the treatment of osteoporosis, is a potent inhibitor of bone resorption. Its molecular target is still unknown. This study examines the effects of ALN on the activity of osteoclast protein-tyrosine phosphatase (PTP; protein-tyrosine-phosphate phosphohydrolase, EC 3.1.3.48), called PTPepsilon. Using osteoclast-like cells generated by coculturing mouse bone marrow cells with mouse calvaria osteoblasts, we found by molecular cloning and RNA blot hybridization that PTPepsilon is highly expressed in osteoclastic cells. A purified fusion protein of PTPepsilon expressed in bacteria was inhibited by ALN with an IC50 of 2 microM. Other PTP inhibitors--orthovanadate and phenylarsine oxide (PAO)-inhibited PTPepsilon with IC50 values of 0.3 microM and 18 microM, respectively. ALN and another bisphosphonate, etidronate, also inhibited the activities of other bacterially expressed PTPs such as PTPsigma and CD45 (also called leukocyte common antigen). The PTP inhibitors ALN, orthovanadate, and PAO suppressed in vitro formation of multinucleated osteoclasts from osteoclast precursors and in vitro bone resorption by isolated rat osteoclasts (pit formation) with estimated IC50 values of 10 microM, 3 microM, and 0.05 microM, respectively. These findings suggest that tyrosine phosphatase activity plays an important role in osteoclast formation and function and is a putative molecular target of bisphosphonate action. Images Fig. 2 Fig. 3 PMID:8610169

  8. Biophysical inhibition of pulmonary surfactant function by polymeric nanoparticles: role of surfactant protein B and C.

    PubMed

    Beck-Broichsitter, Moritz; Ruppert, Clemens; Schmehl, Thomas; Günther, Andreas; Seeger, Werner

    2014-11-01

    The current study investigated the mechanisms involved in the process of biophysical inhibition of pulmonary surfactant by polymeric nanoparticles (NP). The minimal surface tension of diverse synthetic surfactants was monitored in the presence of bare and surface-decorated (i.e. poloxamer 407) sub-100 nm poly(lactide) NP. Moreover, the influence of NP on surfactant composition (i.e. surfactant protein (SP) content) was studied. Dose-elevations of SP advanced the biophysical activity of the tested surfactant preparation. Surfactant-associated protein C supplemented phospholipid mixtures (PLM-C) were shown to be more susceptible to biophysical inactivation by bare NP than phospholipid mixture supplemented with surfactant protein B (PLM-B) and PLM-B/C. Surfactant function was hindered owing to a drastic depletion of the SP content upon contact with bare NP. By contrast, surface-modified NP were capable of circumventing unwanted surfactant inhibition. Surfactant constitution influences the extent of biophysical inhibition by polymeric NP. Steric shielding of the NP surface minimizes unwanted NP-surfactant interactions, which represents an option for the development of surfactant-compatible nanomedicines. Copyright © 2014 Acta Materialia Inc. Published by Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  9. Piperine, a Pungent Alkaloid from Black Pepper, Inhibits B Lymphocyte Activation and Effector Functions.

    PubMed

    Soutar, David A; Doucette, Carolyn D; Liwski, Robert S; Hoskin, David W

    2017-03-01

    Piperine has several well-documented anti-inflammatory properties; however, little is known regarding its effect on humoral immunity. In this study, we describe the immunosuppressive effect of piperine on B lymphocytes, which are integral to the humoral immune response. Mouse B cells were cultured in the absence or presence of non-cytotoxic concentrations (25, 50, and 100 μM) of piperine during T-dependent or T-independent stimulation. Piperine inhibited B cell proliferation by causing G0/G1 phase cell cycle arrest in association with reduced expression of cyclin D2 and D3. The inhibitory effect of piperine was not mediated through transient receptor potential vanilloid-1 ion channel (TRPV1) because piperine also inhibited the proliferation of B cells from TRPV1-deficient mice. Expression of class II major histocompatibility complex molecules and costimulatory CD40 and CD86 on B lymphocytes was reduced in the presence of piperine, as was B cell-mediated antigen presentation to syngeneic T cells. In addition, piperine inhibited B cell synthesis of interleukin (IL)-6 and IL-10 cytokines, as well as IgM, IgG2b, and IgG3 immunoglobulins. The inhibitory effect of piperine on B lymphocyte activation and effector function warrants further investigation for possible application in the treatment of pathologies related to inappropriate humoral immune responses. Copyright © 2017 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.

  10. The bacterial effector Cif interferes with SCF ubiquitin ligase function by inhibiting deneddylation of Cullin1.

    PubMed

    Morikawa, Hanako; Kim, Minsoo; Mimuro, Hitomi; Punginelli, Claire; Koyama, Tomohiro; Nagai, Shinya; Miyawaki, Atsushi; Iwai, Kazuhiro; Sasakawa, Chihiro

    2010-10-15

    Cycle inhibiting factor (Cif) is one of the effectors delivered into epithelial cells by enteropathogenic Escherichia coli (EPEC) and enterohemorrhagic Escherichia coli (EHEC) via the type III secretion system (TTSS). Cif family proteins, which inhibit host cell-cycle progression via mechanisms not yet precisely understood, are highly conserved among EPEC, EHEC, Yersinia pseudotuberculosis, Photorhabdus luminescens and Burkholderia pseudomallei. Levels of several proteins relevant to cell-cycle progression are modulated by Cullin-RING ligases (CRLs), which in turn are activated by conjugation and deconjugation of NEDD8 to Cullins. Here we show that Cif interacts with NEDD8 and interferes with SCF (Skp1-Cullin1-F-box protein) complex ubiquitin ligase function. We found that neddylated Cullin family proteins accumulated and ubiquitination of p27 decreased in cells infected with EPEC. Consequently, Cif stabilized SCF substrates such as CyclinD1, Cdt1, and p27, and caused G1 cell-cycle arrest. Using time-lapse-imaging of fluorescent ubiquitination-based cell-cycle indicator (Fucci)-expressing cells, we were able to monitor cell-cycle progression during EPEC infection and confirmed the arrest of infected cells at G1. Our in vitro and in vivo data show that Cif-NEDD8 interaction inhibits deneddylation of Cullins, suppresses CRL activity and induces G1 arrest. We thus conclude that the bacterial effector Cif interferes with neddylation-mediated cell-cycle control. Copyright © 2010 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  11. Effective Inhibition of Bone Morphogenetic Protein Function by Highly Specific Llama-Derived Antibodies.

    PubMed

    Calpe, Silvia; Wagner, Koen; El Khattabi, Mohamed; Rutten, Lucy; Zimberlin, Cheryl; Dolk, Edward; Verrips, C Theo; Medema, Jan Paul; Spits, Hergen; Krishnadath, Kausilia K

    2015-11-01

    Bone morphogenetic proteins (BMP) have important but distinct roles in tissue homeostasis and disease, including carcinogenesis and tumor progression. A large number of BMP inhibitors are available to study BMP function; however, as most of these antagonists are promiscuous, evaluating specific effects of individual BMPs is not feasible. Because the oncogenic role of the different BMPs varies for each neoplasm, highly selective BMP inhibitors are required. Here, we describe the generation of three types of llama-derived heavy chain variable domains (VHH) that selectively bind to either BMP4, to BMP2 and 4, or to BMP2, 4, 5, and 6. These generated VHHs have high affinity to their targets and are able to inhibit BMP signaling. Epitope binning and docking modeling have shed light into the basis for their BMP specificity. As opposed to the wide structural reach of natural inhibitors, these small molecules target the grooves and pockets of BMPs involved in receptor binding. In organoid experiments, specific inhibition of BMP4 does not affect the activation of normal stem cells. Furthermore, in vitro inhibition of cancer-derived BMP4 noncanonical signals results in an increase of chemosensitivity in a colorectal cancer cell line. Therefore, because of their high specificity and low off-target effects, these VHHs could represent a therapeutic alternative for BMP4(+) malignancies.

  12. Lidocaine preferentially inhibits the function of purinergic P2X7 receptors expressed in Xenopus oocytes.

    PubMed

    Okura, Dan; Horishita, Takafumi; Ueno, Susumu; Yanagihara, Nobuyuki; Sudo, Yuka; Uezono, Yasuhito; Minami, Tomoko; Kawasaki, Takashi; Sata, Takeyoshi

    2015-03-01

    Lidocaine has been widely used to relieve acute pain and chronic refractory pain effectively by both systemic and local administration. Numerous studies reported that lidocaine affects several pain signaling pathways as well as voltage-gated sodium channels, suggesting the existence of multiple mechanisms underlying pain relief by lidocaine. Some extracellular adenosine triphosphate (ATP) receptor subunits are thought to play a role in chronic pain mechanisms, but there have been few studies on the effects of lidocaine on ATP receptors. We studied the effects of lidocaine on purinergic P2X3, P2X4, and P2X7 receptors to explore the mechanisms underlying pain-relieving effects of lidocaine. We investigated the effects of lidocaine on ATP-induced currents in ATP receptor subunits, P2X3, P2X4, and P2X7 expressed in Xenopus oocytes, by using whole-cell, two-electrode, voltage-clamp techniques. Lidocaine inhibited ATP-induced currents in P2X7, but not in P2X3 or P2X4 subunits, in a concentration-dependent manner. The half maximal inhibitory concentration for lidocaine inhibition was 282 ± 45 μmol/L. By contrast, mepivacaine, ropivacaine, and bupivacaine exerted only limited effects on the P2X7 receptor. Lidocaine inhibited the ATP concentration-response curve for the P2X7 receptor via noncompetitive inhibition. Intracellular and extracellular N-(2,6-dimethylphenylcarbamoylmethyl) triethylammonium bromide (QX-314) and benzocaine suppressed ATP-induced currents in the P2X7 receptor in a concentration-dependent manner. In addition, repetitive ATP treatments at 5-minute intervals in the continuous presence of lidocaine revealed that lidocaine inhibition was use-dependent. Finally, the selective P2X7 receptor antagonists Brilliant Blue G and AZ11645373 did not affect the inhibitory actions of lidocaine on the P2X7 receptor. Lidocaine selectively inhibited the function of the P2X7 receptor expressed in Xenopus oocytes. This effect may be caused by acting on sites in the ion

  13. A Complex-Valued Projection Neural Network for Constrained Optimization of Real Functions in Complex Variables.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Songchuan; Xia, Youshen; Wang, Jun

    2015-12-01

    In this paper, we present a complex-valued projection neural network for solving constrained convex optimization problems of real functions with complex variables, as an extension of real-valued projection neural networks. Theoretically, by developing results on complex-valued optimization techniques, we prove that the complex-valued projection neural network is globally stable and convergent to the optimal solution. Obtained results are completely established in the complex domain and thus significantly generalize existing results of the real-valued projection neural networks. Numerical simulations are presented to confirm the obtained results and effectiveness of the proposed complex-valued projection neural network.

  14. The Anti-inflammatory Protein TSG-6 Regulates Chemokine Function by Inhibiting Chemokine/Glycosaminoglycan Interactions*

    PubMed Central

    Dyer, Douglas P.; Salanga, Catherina L.; Johns, Scott C.; Valdambrini, Elena; Fuster, Mark M.; Milner, Caroline M.; Day, Anthony J.; Handel, Tracy M.

    2016-01-01

    TNF-stimulated gene-6 (TSG-6) is a multifunctional protein secreted in response to pro-inflammatory stimuli by a wide range of cells, including neutrophils, monocytes, and endothelial cells. It has been shown to mediate anti-inflammatory and protective effects when administered in disease models, in part, by reducing neutrophil infiltration. Human TSG-6 inhibits neutrophil migration by binding CXCL8 through its Link module (Link_TSG6) and interfering with the presentation of CXCL8 on cell-surface glycosaminoglycans (GAGs), an interaction that is vital for the function of many chemokines. TSG-6 was also found to interact with chemokines CXCL11 and CCL5, suggesting the possibility that it may function as a broad specificity chemokine-binding protein, functionally similar to those encoded by viruses. This study was therefore undertaken to explore the ability of TSG-6 to regulate the function of other chemokines. Herein, we demonstrate that Link_TSG6 binds chemokines from both the CXC and CC families, including CXCL4, CXCL12, CCL2, CCL5, CCL7, CCL19, CCL21, and CCL27. We also show that the Link_TSG6-binding sites on chemokines overlap with chemokine GAG-binding sites, and that the affinities of Link_TSG6 for these chemokines (KD values 1–85 nm) broadly correlate with chemokine-GAG affinities. Link_TSG6 also inhibits chemokine presentation on endothelial cells not only through a direct interaction with chemokines but also by binding and therefore masking the availability of GAGs. Along with previous work, these findings suggest that TSG-6 functions as a pluripotent regulator of chemokines by modulating chemokine/GAG interactions, which may be a major mechanism by which TSG-6 produces its anti-inflammatory effects in vivo. PMID:27044744

  15. Switch of SpnR function from activating to inhibiting quorum sensing by its exogenous addition

    SciTech Connect

    Takayama, Yuriko; Kato, Norihiro

    2016-09-02

    The opportunistic human pathogen Serratia marcescens AS-1 produces the N-hexanoylhomoserine lactone (C6HSL) receptor SpnR, a homologue of LuxR from Vibrio fischeri, which activates pig clusters to produce the antibacterial prodigiosin. In this study, we attempted to artificially regulate quorum sensing (QS) by changing the role of SpnR in N-acylhomoserine lactone (AHL)-mediated QS. SpnR was obtained as a fusion protein tagged with maltose-binding protein (MBP) from overexpression in Escherichia coli, and its specific affinity to C6HSL was demonstrated by quartz crystal microbalance analysis and AHL-bioassay with Chromobacterium violaceum CV026. Prodigiosin production was effectively inhibited by externally added MBP-SpnR in both wild-type AS-1 and the AHL synthase-defective mutant AS-1(ΔspnI). For the mutant, the induced amount of prodigiosin was drastically reduced to approximately 4% with the addition of 18 μM MBP-SpnR to the liquid medium, indicating 81% trapping of C6HSL. A system for inhibiting QS can be constructed by adding exogenous AHL receptor to the culture broth to keep the concentration of free AHL low, whereas intracellular SpnR naturally functions as the activator in response to QS. - Highlights: • Quorum sensing (QS) regulates the expression of some bacterial genes. • We added an AHL receptor to culture media to inhibit QS in Serratia marcescens AS-1. • The exogenous receptor effectively bound C6HSL and inhibited QS. • This approach can be used to artificially regulate AHL-mediated QS.

  16. Inhibition of Osteoclast Formation and Function by Bicarbonate: Role of Soluble Adenylyl Cyclase

    PubMed Central

    Geng, Weidong; Hill, Kathy; Zerwekh, Joseph; Kohler, Thomas; Müller, Ralph; Moe, Orson W.

    2010-01-01

    High [HCO3−] inhibits and low [HCO3−] stimulates bone resorption which mediates part of the effect of chronic acidosis or acid feeding on bone. Soluble adenylyl cyclase (sAC) is a bicarbonate sensor that can potentially mediate the effect of bicarbonate on osteoclasts. Osteoclasts were incubated in 0, 12, 24 mM HCO3− at pH 7.4 for 7–8 days and assayed for tartrate-resistant acid phosphatase (TRAP) and vacuolar-ATPase expression, and H+ accumulation. Total number and area of TRAP (+) multinucleated osteoclasts was decreased by HCO3− in a dose-dependent manner. V-ATPase expression and H+ accumulation normalized to cell cross-sectional area or protein were not significantly changed. The HCO3−-induced inhibition of osteoclast growth and differentiation was blocked by either 2-hydroxyestradiol, an inhibitor of sAC or sAC knock-down by sAC specific siRNA. The model of HCO3− inhibiting osteoclast via sAC was further supported by the fact that the HCO3− dose-response on osteoclasts is flat when cells were saturated with 8-bromo-cAMP, a permeant cAMP analog downstream from sAC thus simulating sAC activation. To confirm our in vitro findings in intact bone, we developed a one-week mouse calvaria culture system where osteoclasts were shown to be viable. Bone volume density (BV/TV) determined by micro-computed tomography (µCT), was higher in 24mM HCO3− compared to 12 mM HCO3− treated calvaria. This HCO3− effect on BV/TV was blocked by 2-hydroxyestradiol. In summary, sAC mediates the inhibition of osteoclast function by HCO3−, by acting as a HCO3− sensor. PMID:19360717

  17. Inhibition of osteoclast formation and function by bicarbonate: role of soluble adenylyl cyclase.

    PubMed

    Geng, Weidong; Hill, Kathy; Zerwekh, Joseph E; Kohler, Thomas; Müller, Ralph; Moe, Orson W

    2009-08-01

    High [HCO(3)(-)] inhibits and low [HCO(3)(-)] stimulates bone resorption, which mediates part of the effect of chronic acidosis or acid feeding on bone. Soluble adenylyl cyclase (sAC) is a bicarbonate sensor that can potentially mediate the effect of bicarbonate on osteoclasts. Osteoclasts were incubated in 0, 12, and 24 mM HCO(3)(-) at pH 7.4 for 7-8 days and assayed for tartrate-resistant acid phosphatase (TRAP) and vacuolar-ATPase expression, and H+ accumulation. Total number and area of TRAP (+) multinucleated osteoclasts was decreased by HCO(3)(-) in a dose-dependent manner. V-ATPase expression and H+ accumulation normalized to cell cross-sectional area or protein were not significantly changed. The HCO(3)(-) -induced inhibition of osteoclast growth and differentiation was blocked by either 2-hydroxyestradiol, an inhibitor of sAC or sAC knockdown by sAC specific siRNA. The model of HCO(3)(-) inhibiting osteoclast via sAC was further supported by the fact that the HCO(3)(-) dose-response on osteoclasts is flat when cells were saturated with 8-bromo-cAMP, a permeant cAMP analog downstream from sAC thus simulating sAC activation. To confirm our in vitro findings in intact bone, we developed a 1-week mouse calvaria culture system where osteoclasts were shown to be viable. Bone volume density (BV/TV) determined by micro-computed tomography (microCT), was higher in 24 mM HCO(3)(-) compared to 12 mM HCO(3)(-) treated calvaria. This HCO(3)(-) effect on BV/TV was blocked by 2-hydroxyestradiol. In summary, sAC mediates the inhibition of osteoclast function by HCO(3)(-), by acting as a HCO(3)(-) sensor.

  18. Computer modelling of antifolate inhibition of folate metabolism using hybrid functional petri nets.

    PubMed

    Assaraf, Yehuda G; Ifergan, Ilan; Kadry, Wisam N; Pinter, Ron Y

    2006-06-21

    Antifolates are used in the treatment of various human malignancies and exert their cytotoxic activity by inhibiting folate-dependent enzymes resulting in disruption of DNA synthesis and cell death. Here we devised a computerized hybrid functional petri nets (HFPN) modelling of folate metabolism under physiological and antifolate inhibitory conditions. This HFPN modelling proved valid as a good agreement was found between the simulated steady-state concentrations of various reduced folates and those published for cell extracts; consistently, the simulation derived total folate pool size (11.3 microM) was identical to that published for cell extracts. In silico experiments were conducted to characterize the inhibitory profile of four distinct antifolates including methotrexate (MTX), tomudex, and LY309887, which inhibit dihydrofolate reductase (DHFR), thymidylate synthase (TS) and glycineamide ribonucleotide transformylase (GARTFase), respectively, as well as pemetrexed which has the capacity to inhibit all three enzymes. In order to assess the inhibitory activity of antifolates on purines and pyrimidines, the biosynthesis rates of IMP (20.53 microM/min) and dTMP (23.8 microM/min) were first simulated. Whereas the biochemical inhibitory profile of MTX was characterized by increased dihydrofolate and decreased tetrahydrofolate (THF) concentrations, the remaining antifolates did not decrease THF levels. Furthermore, MTX was 766- and 10-fold more potent in decreasing the production rates of IMP and dTMP, respectively, than pemetrexed. LY309887 indirectly decreased the rate of dTMP production by reducing the levels of 5-CH2-THF, a folate cofactor for TS. Surprisingly, pemetrexed failed to inhibit DHFR even at high concentrations. This HFPN-based simulation offers an inexpensive, user-friendly, rapid and reliable means of pre-clinical evaluation of the inhibitory profiles of antifolates.

  19. Evidence for Composite Cost Functions in Arm Movement Planning: An Inverse Optimal Control Approach

    PubMed Central

    Berret, Bastien; Chiovetto, Enrico; Nori, Francesco; Pozzo, Thierry

    2011-01-01

    An important issue in motor control is understanding the basic principles underlying the accomplishment of natural movements. According to optimal control theory, the problem can be stated in these terms: what cost function do we optimize to coordinate the many more degrees of freedom than necessary to fulfill a specific motor goal? This question has not received a final answer yet, since what is optimized partly depends on the requirements of the task. Many cost functions were proposed in the past, and most of them were found to be in agreement with experimental data. Therefore, the actual principles on which the brain relies to achieve a certain motor behavior are still unclear. Existing results might suggest that movements are not the results of the minimization of single but rather of composite cost functions. In order to better clarify this last point, we consider an innovative experimental paradigm characterized by arm reaching with target redundancy. Within this framework, we make use of an inverse optimal control technique to automatically infer the (combination of) optimality criteria that best fit the experimental data. Results show that the subjects exhibited a consistent behavior during each experimental condition, even though the target point was not prescribed in advance. Inverse and direct optimal control together reveal that the average arm trajectories were best replicated when optimizing the combination of two cost functions, nominally a mix between the absolute work of torques and the integrated squared joint acceleration. Our results thus support the cost combination hypothesis and demonstrate that the recorded movements were closely linked to the combination of two complementary functions related to mechanical energy expenditure and joint-level smoothness. PMID:22022242

  20. Effects of amisulpride, risperidone and chlorpromazine on auditory and visual latent inhibition, prepulse inhibition, executive function and eye movements in healthy volunteers.

    PubMed

    Barrett, S L; Bell, R; Watson, D; King, D J

    2004-06-01

    In view of the evidence that cognitive deficits in schizophrenia are critically important for long-term outcome, it is essential to establish the effects that the various antipsychotic compounds have on cognition, particularly second-generation drugs. This parallel group, placebo-controlled study aimed to compare the effects in healthy volunteers (n = 128) of acute doses of the atypical antipsychotics amisulpride (300 mg) and risperidone (3 mg) to those of chlorpromazine (100 mg) on tests thought relevant to the schizophrenic process: auditory and visual latent inhibition, prepulse inhibition of the acoustic startle response, executive function and eye movements. The drugs tested were not found to affect auditory latent inhibition, prepulse inhibition or executive functioning as measured by the Cambridge Neuropsychological Test Battery and the FAS test of verbal fluency. However, risperidone disrupted and amisulpride showed a trend to disrupt visual latent inhibition. Although amisulpride did not affect eye movements, both risperidone and chlorpromazine decreased peak saccadic velocity and increased antisaccade error rates, which, in the risperidone group, correlated with drug-induced akathisia. It was concluded that single doses of these drugs appear to have little effect on cognition, but may affect eye movement parameters in accordance with the amount of sedation and akathisia they produce. The effect risperidone had on latent inhibition is likely to relate to its serotonergic properties. Furthermore, as the trend for disrupted visual latent inhibition following amisulpride was similar in nature to that which would be expected with amphetamine, it was concluded that its behaviour in this model is consistent with its preferential presynaptic dopamine antagonistic activity in low dose and its efficacy in the negative symptoms of schizophrenia.

  1. Optimizing health system response to patient's needs: an argument for the importance of functioning information.

    PubMed

    Hopfe, Maren; Prodinger, Birgit; Bickenbach, Jerome E; Stucki, Gerold

    2017-06-06

    Current health systems are increasingly challenged to meet the needs of a growing number of patients living with chronic and often multiple health conditions. The primary outcome of care, it is argued, is not merely curing disease but also optimizing functioning over a person's life span. According to the World Health Organization, functioning can serve as foundation for a comprehensive picture of health and augment the biomedical perspective with a broader and more comprehensive picture of health as it plays out in people's lives. The crucial importance of information about patient's functioning for a well-performing health system, however, has yet to be sufficiently appreciated. This paper argues that functioning information is fundamental in all components of health systems and enhances the capacity of health systems to optimize patients' health and health-related needs. Beyond making sense of biomedical disease patterns, health systems can profit from using functioning information to improve interprofessional collaboration and achieve cross-cutting disease treatment outcomes. Implications for rehabilitation Functioning is a key health outcome for rehabilitation within health systems. Information on restoring, maintaining, and optimizing human functioning can strengthen health system response to patients' health and rehabilitative needs. Functioning information guides health systems to achieve cross-cutting health outcomes that respond to the needs of the growing number of individuals living with chronic and multiple health conditions. Accounting for individuals functioning helps to overcome fragmentation of care and to improve interprofessional collaboration across settings.

  2. Optimization of the lattice function in the planar undulator applied for terahertz FEL oscillators

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yang, Lei; Qin, Bin; Yang, Jun; Liu, Xia-Ling; Tan, Ping; Hu, Tong-Ning

    2014-03-01

    Since the beta function of the electron beam within the undulator has a great influence on the power gain of the free electron laser (FEL), optimization of the undulator lattice becomes important. In this paper, the transfer matrix of the planar undulator is obtained from differential equations of the electron motion. Based on this, the lattice function of the planar undulator in a terahertz FEL oscillator proposed by Huazhong University of Science and Technology (HUST-FEL) is optimized and the expressions of the average beta function are derived. The accuracy of the optimization result was confirmed well by the numerical method. The application range of this analytical method is given as well. At last, the emittance growth in the horizontal direction due to the attenuation of the magnetic field is discussed.

  3. Statistical mechanics of the inverse Ising problem and the optimal objective function

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Berg, Johannes

    2017-08-01

    The inverse Ising problem seeks to reconstruct the parameters of an Ising Hamiltonian on the basis of spin configurations sampled from the Boltzmann measure. Over the last decade, many applications of the inverse Ising problem have arisen, driven by the advent of large-scale data across different scientific disciplines. Recently, strategies to solve the inverse Ising problem based on convex optimisation have proven to be very successful. These approaches maximise particular objective functions with respect to the model parameters. Examples are the pseudolikelihood method and interaction screening. In this paper, we establish a link between approaches to the inverse Ising problem based on convex optimisation and the statistical physics of disordered systems. We characterise the performance of an arbitrary objective function and calculate the objective function which optimally reconstructs the model parameters. We evaluate the optimal objective function within a replica-symmetric ansatz and compare the results of the optimal objective function with other reconstruction methods. Apart from giving a theoretical underpinning to solving the inverse Ising problem by convex optimisation, the optimal objective function outperforms state-of-the-art methods, albeit by a small margin.

  4. The SARS-coronavirus papain-like protease: structure, function and inhibition by designed antiviral compounds.

    PubMed

    Báez-Santos, Yahira M; St John, Sarah E; Mesecar, Andrew D

    2015-03-01

    Over 10 years have passed since the deadly human coronavirus that causes severe acute respiratory syndrome (SARS-CoV) emerged from the Guangdong Province of China. Despite the fact that the SARS-CoV pandemic infected over 8500 individuals, claimed over 800 lives and cost billions of dollars in economic loss worldwide, there still are no clinically approved antiviral drugs, vaccines or monoclonal antibody therapies to treat SARS-CoV infections. The recent emergence of the deadly human coronavirus that causes Middle East respiratory syndrome (MERS-CoV) is a sobering reminder that new and deadly coronaviruses can emerge at any time with the potential to become pandemics. Therefore, the continued development of therapeutic and prophylactic countermeasures to potentially deadly coronaviruses is warranted. The coronaviral proteases, papain-like protease (PLpro) and 3C-like protease (3CLpro), are attractive antiviral drug targets because they are essential for coronaviral replication. Although the primary function of PLpro and 3CLpro are to process the viral polyprotein in a coordinated manner, PLpro has the additional function of stripping ubiquitin and ISG15 from host-cell proteins to aid coronaviruses in their evasion of the host innate immune responses. Therefore, targeting PLpro with antiviral drugs may have an advantage in not only inhibiting viral replication but also inhibiting the dysregulation of signaling cascades in infected cells that may lead to cell death in surrounding, uninfected cells. This review provides an up-to-date discussion on the SARS-CoV papain-like protease including a brief overview of the SARS-CoV genome and replication followed by a more in-depth discussion on the structure and catalytic mechanism of SARS-CoV PLpro, the multiple cellular functions of SARS-CoV PLpro, the inhibition of SARS-CoV PLpro by small molecule inhibitors, and the prospect of inhibiting papain-like protease from other coronaviruses. This paper forms part of a series of

  5. Comparison of penalty functions on a penalty approach to mixed-integer optimization

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Francisco, Rogério B.; Costa, M. Fernanda P.; Rocha, Ana Maria A. C.; Fernandes, Edite M. G. P.

    2016-06-01

    In this paper, we present a comparative study involving several penalty functions that can be used in a penalty approach for globally solving bound mixed-integer nonlinear programming (bMIMLP) problems. The penalty approach relies on a continuous reformulation of the bMINLP problem by adding a particular penalty term to the objective function. A penalty function based on the `erf' function is proposed. The continuous nonlinear optimization problems are sequentially solved by the population-based firefly algorithm. Preliminary numerical experiments are carried out in order to analyze the quality of the produced solutions, when compared with other penalty functions available in the literature.

  6. Hyperthermia inhibits platelet haemostatic functions and selectively regulates the release of alpha-granule proteins

    PubMed Central

    Etulain, J; Lapponi, MJ; Patrucchi, SJ; Romaniuk, MA; Benzadón, R; Klement, GL; Negrotto, S; Schattner, M

    2011-01-01

    Summary Background Hyperthermia is one of the main disturbances of homeostasis occurring during sepsis or hypermetabolic states such as cancer. Platelets are important mediators of the inflammation that accompany these processes, but very little is known about the changes in platelet function that occur at different temperatures. Objectives To explore the effect of higher temperatures on platelet physiology. Methods Platelet responses including adhesion, spreading (fluorescence microscopy), αIIbbeta;3 activation (flow cytometry), aggregation (turbidimetry), ATP release (luminescence), thromboxane A2 generation, alpha-granule protein secretion (ELISA), and protein phosphorylation from different signaling pathways (immunoblotting) were studied. Results Preincubation of platelets at temperatures higher than 37°C (38.5°–42°C) inhibited thrombin-induced haemostasis including platelet adhesion, aggregation, ATP release, and thromboxane A2 generation. The expression of P-selectin and CD63, as well as vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF) release were completely inhibited by hyperthermia, whereas von Willebrand factor (vWF) and endostatin levels remained substantially increased at high temperatures. This suggested that release of proteins from platelet granules is modulated not only by classical platelet agonists but also by microenvironmental factors. The observed gradation of response involved not only antiangiogenesis regulators, but also other cargo proteins. Some signaling pathways were more stable than others. While ERK1/2 and AKT phosphorylation were resistant to changes in temperature, Src, Syk, p38 phosphorylation as well as IkappaB degradation were decreased in a temperature-dependent fashion. Conclusions Higher temperatures, such as those observed with fever or tissue invasion, inhibit the haemostatic functions of platelets and selectively regulate the release of alpha-granule proteins. PMID:21649851

  7. Dipeptidyl peptidase-4 (CD26): knowing the function before inhibiting the enzyme.

    PubMed

    Matteucci, E; Giampietro, O

    2009-01-01

    Dipeptidyl peptidase-4 (DPP4) or adenosine deaminase complexing protein 2 (ADCP 2) or T-cell activation antigen CD26 (EC 3.4.14.5.) is a serine exopeptidase belonging to the S9B protein family that cleaves X-proline dipeptides from the N-terminus of polypeptides, such as chemokines, neuropeptides, and peptide hormones. The enzyme is a type II transmembrane glycoprotein, expressed on the surface of many cell types, whose physiological functions are largely unknown. Protein dimerisation should be required for catalytic activity and glycosylation of the enzyme could impact on its physiological functions. The dimeric glycoprotein ADCP has been found linked to adenosine deaminase (ADA) whose relationship with lymphocyte maturation-differentiation is well-established. Since implicated in the regulation of the biological activity of hormones and chemokines, such as glucagon-like peptide-1 and glucose-dependent insulinotropic polypeptide, DPP4 inhibition offers a new potential therapeutic approach for type 2 diabetes mellitus, as monotherapy and adjunct therapy to other oral agents. The clinical use of presently available orally active inhibitors of DPP4, however, has been associated with side effects that have been in part attributed to the inhibition of related serine proteases, such as DPP8 and DPP9. Indeed, it is noteworthy that CD26 has a key role in immune regulation as a T cell activation molecule and in immune-mediated disorder. All-cause infections were increased after sitagliptin treatment. It is noteworthy that the effects of DPP4 inhibition on the immune system have not been extensively investigated. So far, only routine laboratory safety variables have been measured in published randomised controlled trials. The review summarises present knowledge in the field and suggests some potential directions of future research.

  8. Inhibition of IRF8 Negatively Regulates Macrophage Function and Impairs Cutaneous Wound Healing.

    PubMed

    Guo, Yuanyuan; Yang, Zhiyin; Wu, Shan; Xu, Peng; Peng, Yinbo; Yao, Min

    2017-02-01

    The inflammatory response is essential for normal cutaneous wound healing. Macrophages, as critical inflammatory cells, coordinate inflammation and angiogenesis phases during wound healing. It has been reported that the transcription factor interferon regulatory factor 8 (IRF8), a member of the IRF family, plays a critical role in the development and function of macrophages and is associated with inflammation. However, the role of IRF8 in cutaneous wound healing and its underlying mechanism remain elusive. Through immunohistochemical (IHC) staining, we showed that IRF8 is involved in the wound repair process in mice and patients. Furthermore, we ascertain that the repression of IRF8 by small interfering RNA (siRNA) leads to delayed wound healing. To explore the mechanism by which IRF8 impacts wound healing, we observed its effect on macrophage-related mediators by IHC or real-time PCR. The results demonstrated that the inhibition of IRF8 decreases the mRNA expression of inflammatory mediators associated with M1 macrophage (il-1b, il-6, inos, and tnf-a) but no impact on M2 macrophage-related mediators (arg-1, mrc-1, and il-10) and the number of macrophages in the wounds. Furthermore, the inhibition of IRF8 induced apoptosis in the wounds. In summary, this study demonstrates that the down-regulation of IRF8 in the wound leads to impaired wound healing possibly through the regulation of macrophage function and apoptosis in skin wound.

  9. Maternal exposure to perfluorooctanoic acid inhibits luteal function via oxidative stress and apoptosis in pregnant mice.

    PubMed

    Chen, Yilu; Zhou, Ling; Xu, Jingjie; Zhang, Lu; Li, Mo; Xie, Xingxing; Xie, Yajuan; Luo, Dan; Zhang, Dalei; Yu, Xiaochun; Yang, Bei; Kuang, Haibin

    2017-04-01

    Perfluorooctanoic acid (PFOA) is a synthetic perfluorinated compound, which has been reported to exert adverse effect on the pregnancy. However, whether it is associated with alteration of luteal function remains unknown. Mice were administered PFOA by gavage from gestational days (GD) 1-7 or 13. PFOA treatment did not significantly affect numbers of embryo implantation. Nevertheless, on GD 13, 10mg/kg PFOA treatment significantly increased numbers of resorbed embryo. Furthermore, PFOA exposure markedly reduced serum progesterone levels but did not affect estradiol levels. Treatment also showed concomitant decreases in transcript levels for key steroidogenic enzymes, and reduced numbers and sizes of corpora lutea. In addition, PFOA administration inhibited activities of superoxide dismutase and catalase, and increased generation of hydrogen peroxide and malondialdehyde, and down-regulated level of Bcl-2 and up-regulated p53 and BAX proteins. In conclusion, PFOA exposure significantly inhibits luteal function via oxidative stress and apoptosis in pregnant mice. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  10. Incomplete Dll4/Notch signaling inhibition promotes functional angiogenesis supporting the growth of skin papillomas.

    PubMed

    Djokovic, Dusan; Trindade, Alexandre; Gigante, Joana; Pinho, Mario; Harris, Adrian L; Duarte, Antonio

    2015-08-28

    In invasive malignancies, Dll4/Notch signaling inhibition enhances non-functional vessel proliferation and limits tumor growth by reducing its blood perfusion. To assess the effects of targeted Dll4 allelic deletion in the incipient stages of tumor pathogenesis, we chemically induced skin papillomas in wild-type and Dll4 (+/-) littermates, and compared tumor growth, their histological features, vascularization and the expression of angiogenesis-related molecules. We observed that Dll4 down-regulation promotes productive angiogenesis, although with less mature vessels, in chemically-induced pre-cancerous skin papillomas stimulating their growth. The increase in endothelial activation was associated with an increase in the VEGFR2 to VEGFR1 ratio, which neutralized the tumor-suppressive effect of VEGFR-targeting sorafenib. Thus, in early papillomas, lower levels of Dll4 increase vascularization through raised VEGFR2 levels, enhancing sensitivity to endogenous levels of VEGF, promoting functional angiogenesis and tumor growth. Tumor promoting effect of low-dosage inhibition needs to be considered when implementing Dll4 targeting therapies.

  11. A Functional Gradient in the Rodent Prefrontal Cortex Supports Behavioral Inhibition.

    PubMed

    Hardung, Stefanie; Epple, Robert; Jäckel, Zoe; Eriksson, David; Uran, Cem; Senn, Verena; Gibor, Lihi; Yizhar, Ofer; Diester, Ilka

    2017-02-20

    The ability to plan and execute appropriately timed responses to external stimuli is based on a well-orchestrated balance between movement initiation and inhibition. In impulse control disorders involving the prefrontal cortex (PFC) [1], this balance is disturbed, emphasizing the critical role that PFC plays in appropriately timing actions [2-4]. Here, we employed optogenetic and electrophysiological techniques to systematically analyze the functional role of five key subareas of the rat medial PFC (mPFC) and orbitofrontal cortex (OFC) in action control [5-9]. Inactivation of mPFC subareas induced drastic changes in performance, namely an increase (prelimbic cortex, PL) or decrease (infralimbic cortex, IL) of premature responses. Additionally, electrophysiology revealed a significant decrease in neuronal activity of a PL subpopulation prior to premature responses. In contrast, inhibition of OFC subareas (mainly the ventral OFC, i.e., VO) significantly impaired the ability to respond rapidly after external cues. Consistent with these findings, mPFC activity during response preparation predicted trial outcomes and reaction times significantly better than OFC activity. These data support the concept of opposing roles of IL and PL in directing proactive behavior and argue for an involvement of OFC in predominantly reactive movement control. By attributing defined roles to rodent PFC sections, this study contributes to a deeper understanding of the functional heterogeneity of this brain area and thus may guide medically relevant studies of PFC-associated impulse control disorders in this animal model for neural disorders [10-12].

  12. Tumor Suppressor WWOX inhibits osteosarcoma metastasis by modulating RUNX2 function.

    PubMed

    Del Mare, Sara; Aqeilan, Rami I

    2015-08-10

    Osteosarcoma (OS) is among the most frequently occurring primary bone tumors, primarily affecting adolescents and young adults. This malignant osteoid forming tumor is characterized by its metastatic potential, mainly to lungs. We recently demonstrated that WW domain-containing oxidoreductase (WWOX) is frequently inactivated in human OS and that WWOX restoration in WWOX-negative OS cells suppresses tumorigenicity. Of note, WWOX levels are reduced in paired OS samples of post-treatment metastastectomies as compared to pre-treatment biopsies suggesting that decreased WWOX levels are associated with a more aggressive phenotype at the metastatic site. Nevertheless, little is known about WWOX function in OS metastasis. Here, we investigated the role of tumor suppressor WWOX in suppressing pulmonary OS metastasis both in vitro and in vivo. We demonstrated that ectopic expression of WWOX in OS cells, HOS and LM-7, inhibits OS invasion and cell migration in vitro. Furthermore, WWOX expression reduced tumor burden in vivo and inhibited metastases' seeding and colonization. Mechanistically, WWOX function is associated with reduced levels of RUNX2 metastatic target genes implicated in adhesion and motility. Our results suggest that WWOX plays a critical role in determining the aggressive phenotype of OS, and its expression could be an attractive therapeutic target to combat this devastating adolescent disease.

  13. Tumor Suppressor WWOX inhibits osteosarcoma metastasis by modulating RUNX2 function

    PubMed Central

    Del Mare, Sara; Aqeilan, Rami I.

    2015-01-01

    Osteosarcoma (OS) is among the most frequently occurring primary bone tumors, primarily affecting adolescents and young adults. This malignant osteoid forming tumor is characterized by its metastatic potential, mainly to lungs. We recently demonstrated that WW domain-containing oxidoreductase (WWOX) is frequently inactivated in human OS and that WWOX restoration in WWOX-negative OS cells suppresses tumorigenicity. Of note, WWOX levels are reduced in paired OS samples of post-treatment metastastectomies as compared to pre-treatment biopsies suggesting that decreased WWOX levels are associated with a more aggressive phenotype at the metastatic site. Nevertheless, little is known about WWOX function in OS metastasis. Here, we investigated the role of tumor suppressor WWOX in suppressing pulmonary OS metastasis both in vitro and in vivo. We demonstrated that ectopic expression of WWOX in OS cells, HOS and LM-7, inhibits OS invasion and cell migration in vitro. Furthermore, WWOX expression reduced tumor burden in vivo and inhibited metastases’ seeding and colonization. Mechanistically, WWOX function is associated with reduced levels of RUNX2 metastatic target genes implicated in adhesion and motility. Our results suggest that WWOX plays a critical role in determining the aggressive phenotype of OS, and its expression could be an attractive therapeutic target to combat this devastating adolescent disease. PMID:26256646

  14. Tetrahydrolipstatin Inhibition, Functional Analyses, and Three-dimensional Structure of a Lipase Essential for Mycobacterial Viability

    SciTech Connect

    Crellin, Paul K.; Vivian, Julian P.; Scoble, Judith; Chow, Frances M.; West, Nicholas P.; Brammananth, Rajini; Proellocks, Nicholas I.; Shahine, Adam; Le Nours, Jerome; Wilce, Matthew C.J.; Britton, Warwick J.; Coppel, Ross L.; Rossjohn, Jamie; Beddoe, Travis

    2010-09-17

    The highly complex and unique mycobacterial cell wall is critical to the survival of Mycobacteria in host cells. However, the biosynthetic pathways responsible for its synthesis are, in general, incompletely characterized. Rv3802c from Mycobacterium tuberculosis is a partially characterized phospholipase/thioesterase encoded within a genetic cluster dedicated to the synthesis of core structures of the mycobacterial cell wall, including mycolic acids and arabinogalactan. Enzymatic assays performed with purified recombinant proteins Rv3802c and its close homologs from Mycobacterium smegmatis (MSMEG{_}6394) and Corynebacterium glutamicum (NCgl2775) show that they all have significant lipase activities that are inhibited by tetrahydrolipstatin, an anti-obesity drug that coincidently inhibits mycobacterial cell wall biosynthesis. The crystal structure of MSMEG{_}6394, solved to 2.9 {angstrom} resolution, revealed an {alpha}/{beta} hydrolase fold and a catalytic triad typically present in esterases and lipases. Furthermore, we demonstrate direct evidence of gene essentiality in M. smegmatis and show the structural consequences of loss of MSMEG{_}6394 function on the cellular integrity of the organism. These findings, combined with the predicted essentiality of Rv3802c in M. tuberculosis, indicate that the Rv3802c family performs a fundamental and indispensable lipase-associated function in mycobacteria.

  15. Electrochemical evidence of self-substrate inhibition as functions regulation for cellobiose dehydrogenase from Phanerochaete chrysosporium.

    PubMed

    Stoica, Leonard; Ruzgas, Tautgirdas; Gorton, Lo

    2009-09-01

    The reaction mechanism of cellobiose dehydrogenase (CDH) from Phanerochaete chrysosporium, adsorbed on graphite electrodes, was investigated by following its catalytic reaction with cellobiose registered in both direct and mediated electron transfer modes between the enzyme and the electrode. A wall-jet flow through amperometric cell housing the CDH-modified graphite electrode was connected to a single line flow injection system. In the present study, it is proven that cellobiose, at concentrations higher than 200 microM, competes for the reduced state of the FAD cofactor and it slows down the transfer of electrons to any 2e(-)/H(+) acceptors or further to the heme cofactor, via the internal electron transfer pathway. Based on and proven by electrochemical results, a kinetic model of substrate inhibition is proposed and supported by the agreement between simulation of plots and experimental data. The implications of this kinetic model, called pseudo-ping-pong mechanism, on the possible functions CDH are also discussed. The enzyme exhibits catalytic activity also for lactose, but in contrast to cellobiose, this sugar does not inhibit the enzyme. This suggests that even if some other substrates are coincidentally oxidized by CDH, however, they do not trigger all the possible natural functions of the enzyme. In this respect, cellobiose is regarded as the natural substrate of CDH.

  16. The vertebrate lysozyme inhibitor Ivy functions to inhibit the activity of lytic transglycosylase.

    PubMed

    Clarke, Chelsea A; Scheurwater, Edie M; Clarke, Anthony J

    2010-05-14

    The proteinaceous inhibitor of vertebrate lysozymes (Ivy) is produced by a collection of Gram-negative bacteria as a stress response to damage to their essential cell wall component peptidoglycan. A paralog of Ivy, Ivyp2 is produced exclusively by a number of pseudomonads, including Pseudomonas aeruginosa, but this protein does not inhibit the lysozymes, and its function was unknown. In this study, we demonstrate that the production of Ivy (homologs of both Ivyp1 and Ivyp2) correlates with bacteria that do not O-acetylate their peptidoglycan, a modification that controls the activity of the lytic transglycosylases. Furthermore, we show that both Ivy proteins are potent inhibitors of the lytic transglycoslyases, enzymes involved in the biosynthesis and maintenance of peptidoglycan. These data suggest that the true physiological function of the Ivy proteins is to control the autolytic activity of lytic transglycosylases within the periplasm of Gram-negative bacteria that do not produce O-acetylated peptidoglycan and that the inhibition of exogenous lysozyme by Ivy is simply a fortuitous coincidence.

  17. Pathogenic Acinetobacter Species have a Functional Type I Secretion System and Contact-Dependent Inhibition Systems.

    PubMed

    Harding, Christian M; Pulido, Marina R; Di Venanzio, Gisela; Kinsella, Rachel L; Webb, Andrew I; Scott, Nichollas E; Pachón, Jerónimo; Feldman, Mario F

    2017-04-03

    Pathogenic Acinetobacter species, including A. baumannii and A. nosocomialis, are opportunistic human pathogens of increasing relevance worldwide. Although their mechanisms of drug resistance are well studied, the virulence factors that govern Acinetobacter pathogenesis are incompletely characterized. Here we define the complete secretome of A. nosocomialis strain M2 in minimal media and demonstrate that pathogenic Acinetobacter species produce both a functional type I secretion system (T1SS) and a contact dependent inhibition (CDI) system. Using bioinformatics, quantitative proteomics, and mutational analyses we show that Acinetobacter uses its T1SS for exporting two putative T1SS effectors, an RTX-Serralysin-like toxin and the biofilm associated protein (Bap). Moreover, we found that mutation of any component of the T1SS system abrogated type VI secretion activity under nutrient-limited conditions, indicating a previously unrecognized crosstalk between these two systems. We also demonstrate that the Acinetobacter T1SS is required for biofilm formation. Lastly, we show that both A. nosocomialis and A. baumannii produce functioning CDI systems that mediate growth inhibition of sister cells lacking the cognate immunity protein. The Acinetobacter CDI systems are widely distributed across pathogenic Acinetobacter species, with many A. baumannii isolates harboring two distinct CDI systems. Collectively, these data demonstrate the power of differential, quantitative proteomics approaches to study secreted proteins, define the role of previously uncharacterized protein export systems, and observe crosstalk between secretion systems in the pathobiology of medically relevant Acinetobacter The data are available via ProteomeXchange with identifier PXD005881.

  18. Endothelial-specific inhibition of NF-κB enhances functional haematopoiesis

    PubMed Central

    Poulos, Michael G.; Ramalingam, Pradeep; Gutkin, Michael C.; Kleppe, Maria; Ginsberg, Michael; Crowley, Michael J. P.; Elemento, Olivier; Levine, Ross L.; Rafii, Shahin; Kitajewski, Jan; Greenblatt, Matthew B.; Shim, Jae-Hyuck; Butler, Jason M.

    2016-01-01

    Haematopoietic stem cells (HSCs) reside in distinct niches within the bone marrow (BM) microenvironment, comprised of endothelial cells (ECs) and tightly associated perivascular constituents that regulate haematopoiesis through the expression of paracrine factors. Here we report that the canonical NF-κB pathway in the BM vascular niche is a critical signalling axis that regulates HSC function at steady state and following myelosuppressive insult, in which inhibition of EC NF-κB promotes improved HSC function and pan-haematopoietic recovery. Mice expressing an endothelial-specific dominant negative IκBα cassette under the Tie2 promoter display a marked increase in HSC activity and self-renewal, while promoting the accelerated recovery of haematopoiesis following myelosuppression, in part through protection of the BM microenvironment following radiation and chemotherapeutic-induced insult. Moreover, transplantation of NF-κB-inhibited BM ECs enhanced haematopoietic recovery and protected mice from pancytopenia-induced death. These findings pave the way for development of niche-specific cellular approaches for the treatment of haematological disorders requiring myelosuppressive regimens. PMID:28000664

  19. Plate/shell topological optimization subjected to linear buckling constraints by adopting composite exponential filtering function

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ye, Hong-Ling; Wang, Wei-Wei; Chen, Ning; Sui, Yun-Kang

    2016-08-01

    In this paper, a model of topology optimization with linear buckling constraints is established based on an independent and continuous mapping method to minimize the plate/shell structure weight. A composite exponential function (CEF) is selected as filtering functions for element weight, the element stiffness matrix and the element geometric stiffness matrix, which recognize the design variables, and to implement the changing process of design variables from "discrete" to "continuous" and back to "discrete". The buckling constraints are approximated as explicit formulations based on the Taylor expansion and the filtering function. The optimization model is transformed to dual programming and solved by the dual sequence quadratic programming algorithm. Finally, three numerical examples with power function and CEF as filter function are analyzed and discussed to demonstrate the feasibility and efficiency of the proposed method.

  20. Characterizing the low strain complex modulus of asphalt concrete specimens through optimization of frequency response functions.

    PubMed

    Gudmarsson, Anders; Ryden, Nils; Birgisson, Björn

    2012-10-01

    Measured and finite element simulated frequency response functions are used to characterize the low strain (~10(-7)) complex moduli of an asphalt concrete specimen. The frequency response functions of the specimen are measured at different temperatures by using an instrumented hammer to apply a load and an accelerometer to measure the dynamic response. Theoretical frequency response functions are determined by modeling the specimen as a three-dimensional (3D) linear isotropic viscoelastic material in a finite element program. The complex moduli are characterized by optimizing the theoretical frequency response functions against the measured ones. The method is shown to provide a good fit between the frequency response functions, giving an estimation of the complex modulus between minimum 500 Hz and maximum 18|000 Hz depending on the temperature. Furthermore, the optimization method is shown to give a good estimation of the complex modulus master curve.

  1. An Optimized Lock Solution Containing Micafungin, Ethanol and Doxycycline Inhibits Candida albicans and Mixed C. albicans – Staphyloccoccus aureus Biofilms

    PubMed Central

    Lown, Livia; Peters, Brian M.; Walraven, Carla J.; Noverr, Mairi C.; Lee, Samuel A.

    2016-01-01

    Candida albicans is a major cause of catheter-related bloodstream infections and is associated with high morbidity and mortality. Due to the propensity of C. albicans to form drug-resistant biofilms, the current standard of care includes catheter removal; however, reinsertion may be technically challenging or risky. Prolonged exposure of an antifungal lock solution within the catheter in conjunction with systemic therapy has been experimentally attempted for catheter salvage. Previously, we demonstrated excellent in vitro activity of micafungin, ethanol, and high-dose doxycycline as single agents for prevention and treatment of C. albicans biofilms. Thus, we sought to investigate optimal combinations of micafungin, ethanol, and/or doxycycline as a lock solution. We performed two- and three-drug checkerboard assays to determine the in vitro activity of pairwise or three agents in combination for prevention or treatment of C. albicans biofilms. Optimal lock solutions were tested for activity against C. albicans clinical isolates, reference strains and polymicrobial C. albicans-S. aureus biofilms. A solution containing 20% (v/v) ethanol, 0.01565 μg/mL micafungin, and 800 μg/mL doxycycline demonstrated a reduction of 98% metabolic activity and no fungal regrowth when used to prevent fungal biofilm formation; however there was no advantage over 20% ethanol alone. This solution was also successful in inhibiting the regrowth of C. albicans from mature polymicrobial biofilms, although it was not fully bactericidal. Solutions containing 5% ethanol with low concentrations of micafungin and doxycycline demonstrated synergistic activity when used to prevent monomicrobial C. albicans biofilm formation. A combined solution of micafungin, ethanol and doxycycline is highly effective for the prevention of C. albicans biofilm formation but did not demonstrate an advantage over 20% ethanol alone in these studies. PMID:27428310

  2. The importance of functional form in optimal control solutions of problems in population dynamics

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Runge, M.C.; Johnson, F.A.

    2002-01-01

    Optimal control theory is finding increased application in both theoretical and applied ecology, and it is a central element of adaptive resource management. One of the steps in an adaptive management process is to develop alternative models of system dynamics, models that are all reasonable in light of available data, but that differ substantially in their implications for optimal control of the resource. We explored how the form of the recruitment and survival functions in a general population model for ducks affected the patterns in the optimal harvest strategy, using a combination of analytical, numerical, and simulation techniques. We compared three relationships between recruitment and population density (linear, exponential, and hyperbolic) and three relationships between survival during the nonharvest season and population density (constant, logistic, and one related to the compensatory harvest mortality hypothesis). We found that the form of the component functions had a dramatic influence on the optimal harvest strategy and the ultimate equilibrium state of the system. For instance, while it is commonly assumed that a compensatory hypothesis leads to higher optimal harvest rates than an additive hypothesis, we found this to depend on the form of the recruitment function, in part because of differences in the optimal steady-state population density. This work has strong direct consequences for those developing alternative models to describe harvested systems, but it is relevant to a larger class of problems applying optimal control at the population level. Often, different functional forms will not be statistically distinguishable in the range of the data. Nevertheless, differences between the functions outside the range of the data can have an important impact on the optimal harvest strategy. Thus, development of alternative models by identifying a single functional form, then choosing different parameter combinations from extremes on the likelihood

  3. The effect of direct renin inhibition alone and in combination with ACE inhibition on endothelial function, arterial stiffness, and renal function in type 1 diabetes.

    PubMed

    Cherney, David Z I; Scholey, James W; Jiang, Shan; Har, Ronnie; Lai, Vesta; Sochett, Etienne B; Reich, Heather N

    2012-11-01

    Diabetes is associated with renin-angiotensin system (RAS) activation, leading to renal and systemic vascular dysfunction that contribute to end-organ injury and significant morbidity. RAS blockade with ACE inhibitors reduces, but does not abolish, RAS effects. Accordingly, our aim was to determine if direct renin inhibition alone, and in combination with an ACE inhibitor, corrects early hemodynamic abnormalities associated with type 1 diabetes. Arterial stiffness (augmentation index), flow-mediated vasodilatation (FMD), and renal hemodynamic function (inulin and paraaminohippurate clearance) were measured at baseline under clamped euglycemic and hyperglycemic conditions (n = 21). Measures were repeated after 4 weeks of aliskiren therapy and again after aliskiren plus ramipril. Blood pressure-lowering effects of aliskiren were similar during clamped euglycemia and hyperglycemia. Combination therapy augmented this effect under both glycemic conditions (P = 0.0005). Aliskiren reduced arterial stiffness under clamped euglycemic and hyperglycemic conditions, and the effects were augmented by dual RAS blockade (-3.4 ± 11.2 to -8.0 ± 11.5 to -14.3 ± 8.4%, respectively, during euglycemia, P = 0.0001). During clamped euglycemia, aliskiren increased FMD; dual therapy exaggerated this effect (5.1 ± 3.3 to 7.5 ± 3.0 to 10.8 ± 3.5%, repeated-measures ANOVA, P = 0.0001). Aliskiren monotherapy caused renal vasodilatation during clamped hyperglycemia only. In contrast, dual therapy augmented renal vasodilatory effects during clamped euglycemia and hyperglycemia. In patients with uncomplicated type 1 diabetes, aliskiren-based dual RAS blockade is associated with greater arterial compliance, FMD, and renal vasodilatation.

  4. Drugs Which Inhibit Osteoclast Function Suppress Tumor Growth through Calcium Reduction in Bone

    PubMed Central

    Li, Xin; Liao, Jinhui; Park, Serk In; Koh, Amy J; Sadler, William D; Pienta, Kenneth J; Rosol, Thomas J; McCauley, Laurie K

    2011-01-01

    Prostate carcinoma frequently metastasizes to bone where the microenvironment facilitates its growth. Inhibition of bone resorption is effective in reducing tumor burden and bone destruction in prostate cancer. However, whether drugs that inhibit osteoclast function inhibit tumor growth independent of inhibition of bone resorption is unclear. Calcium is released during bone resorption and the calcium sensing receptor is an important regulator of cancer cell proliferation. The goal of this investigation was to elucidate the role of calcium released during bone resorption and to determine the impact of drugs which suppress bone resorption on tumor growth in bone. To compare tumor growth in a skeletal versus non-skeletal site, equal numbers of canine prostate cancer cells expressing luciferase (ACE-1luc) prostate cancer cells were inoculated into a simple collagen matrix, neonatal mouse vertebrae (vossicles), human de-proteinized bone, or a mineralized collagen matrix. Implants were placed subcutaneously into athymic mice. Luciferase activity was used to track tumor growth weekly and at one month tumors were dissected for histologic analysis. Luciferase activity and tumor size were greater in vossicles, de-proteinized bone and mineralized collagen matrix versus non-mineralized collagen implants. The human osteoblastic prostate carcinoma cell line C4-2b also grew better in a mineral rich environment with a greater proliferation of C4-2b cells reflected by Ki-67 staining. Zoledronic acid (ZA), a bisphosphonate, and recombinant OPG-Fc, a RANKL inhibitor, were administered to mice bearing vertebral implants (vossicles) containing ACE-1 osteoblastic prostate cancer cells. Vossicles or collagen matrices were seeded with ACE-1luc cells subcutaneously in athymic mice (2 vossicles, 2 collagen implants/mouse). Mice received ZA (5μg/mouse, twice/week), (OPG-Fc at 10mg/kg, 3 times/week) or vehicle, and luciferase activity was measured weekly. Histologic analysis of the tumors

  5. Reconstruction of the unknown optimization cost functions from experimental recordings during static multi-finger prehension

    PubMed Central

    Niu, Xun; Terekhov, Alexander V.; Latash, Mark L.; Zatsiorsky, Vladimir M.

    2013-01-01

    The goal of the research is to reconstruct the unknown cost (objective) function(s) presumably used by the neural controller for sharing the total force among individual fingers in multi-finger prehension. The cost function was determined from experimental data by applying the recently developed Analytical Inverse Optimization (ANIO) method (Terekhov et al 2010). The core of the ANIO method is the Theorem of Uniqueness that specifies conditions for unique (with some restrictions) estimation of the objective functions. In the experiment, subjects (n=8) grasped an instrumented handle and maintained it at rest in the air with various external torques, loads, and target grasping forces applied to the object. The experimental data recorded from 80 trials showed a tendency to lie on a 2-dimensional hyperplane in the 4-dimensional finger-force space. Because the constraints in each trial were different, such a propensity is a manifestation of a neural mechanism (not the task mechanics). In agreement with the Lagrange principle for the inverse optimization, the plane of experimental observations was close to the plane resulting from the direct optimization. The latter plane was determined using the ANIO method. The unknown cost function was reconstructed successfully for each performer, as well as for the group data. The cost functions were found to be quadratic with non-zero linear terms. The cost functions obtained with the ANIO method yielded more accurate results than other optimization methods. The ANIO method has an evident potential for addressing the problem of optimization in motor control. PMID:22104742

  6. Sexual Function and the Use of Medical Devices or Drugs to Optimize Potency After Prostate Brachytherapy

    SciTech Connect

    Whaley, J. Taylor; Levy, Lawrence B.; Swanson, David A.; Pugh, Thomas J.; Kudchadker, Rajat J.; Bruno, Teresa L.; Frank, Steven J.

    2012-04-01

    Purpose: Prospective evaluation of sexual outcomes after prostate brachytherapy with iodine-125 seeds as monotherapy at a tertiary cancer care center. Methods and Materials: Subjects were 129 men with prostate cancer with I-125 seed implants (prescribed dose, 145 Gy) without supplemental hormonal or external beam radiation therapy. Sexual function, potency, and bother were prospectively assessed at baseline and at 1, 4, 8, and 12 months using validated quality-of-life self-assessment surveys. Postimplant dosimetry values, including dose to 10% of the penile bulb (D10), D20, D33, D50, D75, D90, and penile volume receiving 100% of the prescribed dose (V100) were calculated. Results: At baseline, 56% of patients recorded having optimal erections; at 1 year, 62% of patients with baseline erectile function maintained optimal potency, 58% of whom with medically prescribed sexual aids or drugs. Variables associated with pretreatment-to-posttreatment decline in potency were time after implant (p = 0.04) and age (p = 0.01). Decline in urinary function may have been related to decline in potency. At 1 year, 69% of potent patients younger than 70 years maintained optimal potency, whereas 31% of patients older than 70 maintained optimal potency (p = 0.02). Diabetes was related to a decline in potency (p = 0.05), but neither smoking nor hypertension were. For patients with optimal potency at baseline, mean sexual bother scores had declined significantly at 1 year (p < 0.01). Sexual potency, sexual function, and sexual bother scores failed to correlate with any dosimetric variable tested. Conclusions: Erections firm enough for intercourse can be achieved at 1 year after treatment, but most men will require medical aids to optimize potency. Although younger men were better able to maintain erections firm enough for intercourse than older men, there was no correlation between potency, sexual function, or sexual bother and penile bulb dosimetry.

  7. Three-input majority function as the unique optimal function for the bias amplification using nonlocal boxes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mori, Ryuhei

    2016-11-01

    Brassard et al. [Phys. Rev. Lett. 96, 250401 (2006), 10.1103/PhysRevLett.96.250401] showed that shared nonlocal boxes with a CHSH (Clauser, Horne, Shimony, and Holt) probability greater than 3/+√{6 } 6 yield trivial communication complexity. There still exists a gap with the maximum CHSH probability 2/+√{2 } 4 achievable by quantum mechanics. It is an interesting open question to determine the exact threshold for the trivial communication complexity. Brassard et al.'s idea is based on recursive bias amplification by the three-input majority function. It was not obvious if another choice of function exhibits stronger bias amplification. We show that the three-input majority function is the unique optimal function, so that one cannot improve the threshold 3/+√{6 } 6 by Brassard et al.'s bias amplification. In this work, protocols for computing the function used for the bias amplification are restricted to be nonadaptive protocols or a particular adaptive protocol inspired by Pawłowski et al.'s protocol for information causality [Nature (London) 461, 1101 (2009), 10.1038/nature08400]. We first show an adaptive protocol inspired by Pawłowski et al.'s protocol, and then show that the adaptive protocol improves upon nonadaptive protocols. Finally, we show that the three-input majority function is the unique optimal function for the bias amplification if we apply the adaptive protocol to each step of the bias amplification.

  8. Single residue deletions along the length of the influenza HA fusion peptide lead to inhibition of membrane fusion function

    SciTech Connect

    Langley, William A.; Thoennes, Sudha; Bradley, Konrad C.; Galloway, Summer E.; Talekar, Ganesh R.; Cummings, Sandra F.; Vareckova, Eva; Russell, Rupert J.; Steinhauer, David A.

    2009-11-25

    A panel of eight single amino acid deletion mutants was generated within the first 24 residues of the fusion peptide domain of the of the hemagglutinin (HA) of A/Aichi/2/68 influenza A virus (H3N2 subtype). The mutant HAs were analyzed for folding, cell surface transport, cleavage activation, capacity to undergo acid-induced conformational changes, and membrane fusion activity. We found that the mutant DELTAF24, at the C-terminal end of the fusion peptide, was expressed in a non-native conformation, whereas all other deletion mutants were transported to the cell surface and could be cleaved into HA1 and HA2 to activate membrane fusion potential. Furthermore, upon acidification these cleaved HAs were able to undergo the characteristic structural rearrangements that are required for fusion. Despite this, all mutants were inhibited for fusion activity based on two separate assays. The results indicate that the mutant fusion peptide domains associate with target membranes in a non-functional fashion, and suggest that structural features along the length of the fusion peptide are likely to be relevant for optimal membrane fusion activity.

  9. Maximum power, ecological function and efficiency of an irreversible Carnot cycle: a cost and effectiveness optimization

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Aragón-González, G.; Canales-Palma, A.; León-Galicia, A.; Morales-Gómez, J. R.

    2008-12-01

    In this work we include, for the Carnot cycle, irreversibilities of linear finite rate of heat transferences between the heat engine and its reservoirs, heat leak between the reservoirs and internal dissipations of the working fluid. A first optimization of the power output, the efficiency and ecological function of an irreversible Carnot cycle, with respect to: internal temperature ratio, time ratio for the heat exchange and the allocation ratio of the heat exchangers; is performed. For the second and third optimizations, the optimum values for the time ratio and internal temperature ratio are substituted into the equation of power and, then, the optimizations with respect to the cost and effectiveness ratio of the heat exchangers are performed. Finally, a criterion of partial optimization for the class of irreversible Carnot engines is herein presented.

  10. Nonvariational Orbital Optimization Techniques for the AP1roG Wave Function.

    PubMed

    Boguslawski, Katharina; Tecmer, Paweł; Bultinck, Patrick; De Baerdemacker, Stijn; Van Neck, Dimitri; Ayers, Paul W

    2014-11-11

    We introduce new nonvariational orbital optimization schemes for the antisymmetric product of one-reference orbital geminal (AP1roG) wave function (also known as pair-coupled cluster doubles) that are extensions to our recently proposed projected seniority-two (PS2-AP1roG) orbital optimization method [ J. Chem. Phys. 2014 , 140 , 214114 )]. These approaches represent less stringent approximations to the PS2-AP1roG ansatz and prove to be more robust approximations to the variational orbital optimization scheme than PS2-AP1roG. The performance of the proposed orbital optimization techniques is illustrated for a number of well-known multireference problems: the insertion of Be into H2, the automerization process of cyclobutadiene, the stability of the monocyclic form of pyridyne, and the aromatic stability of benzene.

  11. Inhibition of electron transport chain assembly and function promotes photodynamic killing of Candida

    PubMed Central

    Chabrier-Roselló, Yeissa; Giesselman, Benjamin R.; De Jesús-Andino, Francisco J.; Foster, Thomas H.; Mitra, Soumya; Haidaris, Constantine G.

    2010-01-01

    Respiratory deficiency increases the sensitivity of the pathogenic fungi Candida albicans and C. glabrata to oxidative stress induced by photodynamic therapy (PDT) sensitized by the cationic porphyrin meso-tetra (N-methyl-4-pyridyl) porphine tetra tosylate (TMP-1363). Since disruption of electron transport chain (ETC) function increases intracellular levels of reactive oxygen species in yeast, we determined whether interference with ETC assembly or function increased sensitivity to TMP-1363-PDT in C. albicans, C. glabrata and the non-pathogenic yeast Saccharomyces cerevisiae. Metabolic inhibitor antimycin A and defined genetic mutants were used to identify ETC components that contribute to the sensitivity to PDT. Inhibition of cytochrome bc1 (Complex III) with antimycin A increases mitochondrial levels of reactive oxygen species. PDT performed following pretreatment with antimycin A reduced colony forming units (CFU) of C. albicans and C. glabrata by approximately two orders of magnitude relative to PDT alone. A S. cerevisiae mitochondrial glutaredoxin grx5 mutant, defective in assembly of Fe-S clusters critical for Complex III function, displayed increased sensitivity to PDT. Furthermore, C. glabrata and S. cerevisiae mutants in cytochrome c oxidase (Complex IV) synthesis and assembly were also significantly more sensitive to PDT. These included suv3, encoding an ATP-dependent RNA helicase critical for maturation of cytochrome c oxidase subunit transcripts, and pet117, encoding an essential cytochrome c oxidase assembly factor. Following PDT, the reduction in CFU of these mutants was one to two orders of magnitude greater than in their respective parental strains. The data demonstrate that selective inhibition of ETC Complexes III and IV significantly increases the sensitivity of C. albicans, C. glabrata and S. cerevisiae to PDT sensitized with TMP-1363. PMID:20381373

  12. Extracellular citrullination inhibits the function of matrix associated TGF-β.

    PubMed

    Sipilä, Kalle H; Ranga, Vipin; Rappu, Pekka; Torittu, Annamari; Pirilä, Laura; Käpylä, Jarmo; Johnson, Mark S; Larjava, Hannu; Heino, Jyrki

    2016-09-01

    In inflammatory arthritis peptidyl arginine deiminase (PAD) enzymes can citrullinate arginine residues in extracellular matrix (ECM) proteins, such as collagens and fibronectin. This may lead to the generation of anti-citrullinated protein antibodies, important diagnostic markers in rheumatoid arthritis. In addition, the citrullination may directly affect protein function. Based on structural analysis, we found that most ECM-associated growth factors (GFs) have arginine residues in their receptor recognition sites. Thus, they are potential functional targets of extracellular citrullination. To examine this further, we focused on the citrullination of transforming growth factor-βs (TGF-β), well-known ECM-associated GFs. PAD-treatment of CHO-LTBP1 cell derived matrix, rich with TGF-β, decreased the level of TGF-β activity as detected by HaCaT and MLEC-PAI-1/Lu reporter cells. Additional experiments indicated that PAD-treatment inhibits the integrin-mediated TGF-β activation since PAD-treatment decreased the binding of integrin αVβ6 ectodomain as well as integrin-mediated spreading of MG-63 and HaCaT cells to β1-latency associated peptide (TGF-β1 LAP). The citrullination of the RGD site, an important integrin recognition motif, was confirmed by mass spectrometry. Furthermore, the citrullination of active TGF-β1 inhibited its binding to recombinant TGF-β receptor II, and prevented its ability to activate TGF-β signaling. Thus, extracellular PAD activity can affect the function of ECM-associated growth factors by different mechanisms. Importantly, the citrullination of both latent and active TGF-β has the potency to regulate the inflammatory process.

  13. The Nucleotide Synthesis Enzyme CAD Inhibits NOD2 Antibacterial Function in Human Intestinal Epithelial Cells

    PubMed Central

    Richmond, Amy L.; Kabi, Amrita; Homer, Craig R.; García, Noemí Marina; Nickerson, Kourtney P.; NesvizhskiI, Alexey I.; Sreekumar, Arun; Chinnaiyan, Arul M.; Nuñez, Gabriel; McDonald, Christine

    2013-01-01

    BACKGROUND & AIMS Polymorphisms that reduce the function of nucleotide-binding oligomerization domain (NOD)2, a bacterial sensor, have been associated with Crohn’s disease (CD). No proteins that regulate NOD2 activity have been identified as selective pharmacologic targets. We sought to discover regulators of NOD2 that might be pharmacologic targets for CD therapies. METHODS Carbamoyl phosphate synthetase/ aspartate transcarbamylase/dihydroorotase (CAD) is an enzyme required for de novo pyrimidine nucleotide synthesis; it was identified as a NOD2-interacting protein by immunoprecipitation-coupled mass spectrometry. CAD expression was assessed in colon tissues from individuals with and without inflammatory bowel disease by immunohistochemistry. The interaction between CAD and NOD2 was assessed in human HCT116 intestinal epithelial cells by immunoprecipitation, immunoblot, reporter gene, and gentamicin protection assays. We also analyzed human cell lines that express variants of NOD2 and the effects of RNA interference, overexpression and CAD inhibitors. RESULTS CAD was identified as a NOD2-interacting protein expressed at increased levels in the intestinal epithelium of patients with CD compared with controls. Overexpression of CAD inhibited NOD2-dependent activation of nuclear factor κB and p38 mitogen-activated protein kinase, as well as intracellular killing of Salmonella. Reduction of CAD expression or administration of CAD inhibitors increased NOD2-dependent signaling and antibacterial functions of NOD2 variants that are and are not associated with CD. CONCLUSIONS The nucleotide synthesis enzyme CAD is a negative regulator of NOD2. The antibacterial function of NOD2 variants that have been associated with CD increased in response to pharmacologic inhibition of CAD. CAD is a potential therapeutic target for CD. PMID:22387394

  14. fMRI of Cocaine Self-Administration in Macaques Reveals Functional Inhibition of Basal Ganglia

    PubMed Central

    Mandeville, Joseph B; Choi, Ji-Kyung; Jarraya, Bechir; Rosen, Bruce R; Jenkins, Bruce G; Vanduffel, Wim

    2011-01-01

    Disparities in cocaine-induced neurochemical and metabolic responses between human beings and rodents motivate the use of non-human primates (NHP) to model consequences of repeated cocaine exposure in human subjects. To characterize the functional response to cocaine infusion in NHP brain, we employed contrast-enhanced fMRI during both non-contingent injection of drug and self-administration of cocaine in the magnet. Cocaine robustly decreased cerebral blood volume (CBV) throughout basal ganglia and motor/pre-motor cortex and produced subtle functional inhibition of prefrontal cortex. No brain regions exhibited significant elevation of CBV in response to cocaine challenge. Theses effects in NHP brain are opposite in sign to the cocaine-induced fMRI response in rats, but consistent with previous measurements in NHP based on glucose metabolism. Because the striatal ratio of D2 to D1 receptors is larger in human beings and NHP than rats, we hypothesize that the inhibitory effects of D2 receptor binding dominate the functional response in primates, whereas excitatory D1 receptor stimulation predominates in the rat. If the NHP accurately models the human response to cocaine, downregulation of D2 receptors in human cocaine-abusing populations can be expected to blunt cocaine-induced functional responses, contributing to the weak and variable fMRI responses reported in human basal ganglia following cocaine infusion. PMID:21307843

  15. Optimizing fMRI Preprocessing Pipelines for Block-Design Tasks as a Function of Age.

    PubMed

    Churchill, Nathan W; Raamana, Pradeep; Spring, Robyn; Strother, Stephen C

    2017-02-12

    Functional Magnetic Resonance Imaging (fMRI) is a powerful neuroimaging tool, which is often hampered by significant noise confounds. There is evidence that our ability to detect activations in task fMRI is highly dependent on the preprocessing steps used to control noise and artifact. However, the vast majority of studies examining preprocessing pipelines in fMRI have focused on young adults. Given the widespread use of fMRI for characterizing the neurobiology of aging, it is critical to examine how the impact of preprocessing choices varies as a function of age. In this study, we employ the NPAIRS cross-validation framework, which optimizes pipelines based on metrics of prediction accuracy (P) and spatial reproducibility (R), to compare the effects of pipeline optimization between young (21-33 years) and older (61-82 years) cohorts, for three different block-design contrasts. Motion is shown to be a greater issue in the older cohort, and we introduce new statistical approaches to control for potential biases due to head motion during pipeline optimization. In comparison, data-driven methods of physiological noise correction show comparable benefits for both young and old cohorts. Using our optimization framework, we demonstrate that the optimal pipelines tend to be highly similar across age cohorts. In addition, there is a comparable, significant benefit of pipeline optimization across age cohorts, for (P, R) metrics and independent validation measures of activation overlap (both between-subject, within-session and within-subject, between-session). The choice of task contrast consistently shows a greater impact than the age cohort, for (P, R) metrics and activation overlap. Finally, adaptive pipeline optimization per task run shows improved sensitivity to age-related changes in brain activity, particularly for weaker, more complex cognitive contrasts. The current study provides the first detailed examination of preprocessing pipelines across age cohorts

  16. Mechanistic Insight into the Host Transcription Inhibition Function of Rift Valley Fever Virus NSs and Its Importance in Virulence

    PubMed Central

    Terasaki, Kaori; Ramirez, Sydney I.; Makino, Shinji

    2016-01-01

    Rift Valley fever virus (RVFV), a member of the genus Phlebovirus within the family Bunyaviridae, causes periodic outbreaks in livestocks and humans in countries of the African continent and Middle East. RVFV NSs protein, a nonstructural protein, is a major virulence factor that exhibits several important biological properties. These include suppression of general transcription, inhibition of IFN-β promoter induction and degradation of double-stranded RNA-dependent protein kinase R. Although each of these biological functions of NSs are considered important for countering the antiviral response in the host, the individual contributions of these functions towards RVFV virulence remains unclear. To examine this, we generated two RVFV MP-12 strain-derived mutant viruses. Each carried mutations in NSs that specifically targeted its general transcription inhibition function without affecting its ability to degrade PKR and inhibit IFN-β promoter induction, through its interaction with Sin3-associated protein 30, a part of the repressor complex at the IFN-β promoter. Using these mutant viruses, we have dissected the transcription inhibition function of NSs and examined its importance in RVFV virulence. Both NSs mutant viruses exhibited a differentially impaired ability to inhibit host transcription when compared with MP-12. It has been reported that NSs suppresses general transcription by interfering with the formation of the transcription factor IIH complex, through the degradation of the p62 subunit and sequestration of the p44 subunit. Our study results lead us to suggest that the ability of NSs to induce p62 degradation is the major contributor to its general transcription inhibition property, whereas its interaction with p44 may not play a significant role in this function. Importantly, RVFV MP-12-NSs mutant viruses with an impaired general transcription inhibition function showed a reduced cytotoxicity in cell culture and attenuated virulence in young mice

  17. Mechanistic Insight into the Host Transcription Inhibition Function of Rift Valley Fever Virus NSs and Its Importance in Virulence.

    PubMed

    Terasaki, Kaori; Ramirez, Sydney I; Makino, Shinji

    2016-10-01

    Rift Valley fever virus (RVFV), a member of the genus Phlebovirus within the family Bunyaviridae, causes periodic outbreaks in livestocks and humans in countries of the African continent and Middle East. RVFV NSs protein, a nonstructural protein, is a major virulence factor that exhibits several important biological properties. These include suppression of general transcription, inhibition of IFN-β promoter induction and degradation of double-stranded RNA-dependent protein kinase R. Although each of these biological functions of NSs are considered important for countering the antiviral response in the host, the individual contributions of these functions towards RVFV virulence remains unclear. To examine this, we generated two RVFV MP-12 strain-derived mutant viruses. Each carried mutations in NSs that specifically targeted its general transcription inhibition function without affecting its ability to degrade PKR and inhibit IFN-β promoter induction, through its interaction with Sin3-associated protein 30, a part of the repressor complex at the IFN-β promoter. Using these mutant viruses, we have dissected the transcription inhibition function of NSs and examined its importance in RVFV virulence. Both NSs mutant viruses exhibited a differentially impaired ability to inhibit host transcription when compared with MP-12. It has been reported that NSs suppresses general transcription by interfering with the formation of the transcription factor IIH complex, through the degradation of the p62 subunit and sequestration of the p44 subunit. Our study results lead us to suggest that the ability of NSs to induce p62 degradation is the major contributor to its general transcription inhibition property, whereas its interaction with p44 may not play a significant role in this function. Importantly, RVFV MP-12-NSs mutant viruses with an impaired general transcription inhibition function showed a reduced cytotoxicity in cell culture and attenuated virulence in young mice

  18. Using symmetry-adapted optimized sum-of-products basis functions to calculate vibrational spectra

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Leclerc, Arnaud; Carrington, Tucker

    2016-01-01

    Vibrational spectra can be computed without storing full-dimensional vectors by using low-rank sum-of-products (SOP) basis functions. We introduce symmetry constraints in the SOP basis functions to make it possible to separately calculate states in different symmetry subgroups. This is done using a power method to compute eigenvalues and an alternating least squares method to optimize basis functions. Owing to the fact that the power method favours the convergence of the lowest states, one must be careful not to exclude basis functions of some symmetries. Exploiting symmetry facilitates making assignments and improves the accuracy. The method is applied to the acetonitrile molecule.

  19. Shuttle ascent trajectory optimization with function space quasi-Newton techniques

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Edge, E. R.; Powers, W. F.

    1974-01-01

    A Space Shuttle ascent trajectory optimization problem from lift-off to orbital insertion is solved with a function space version of a quasi-Newton parameter optimization method developed by Broyden. The problem includes five parameter and one bounded-function controls, two state-variable constraints, and four terminal conditions. The bounded controls are treated directly, while the remaining constraints are adjoined to the performance index (maximum payload) with penalty functions. The problem is formulated as a four-phase variational problem (liftoff, pitch-over, gravity-turn, linear tangent steering), and the appropriate gradients are developed by first variation theory. A projection operator is introduced to aid in the interpretation of the algorithm with mixed parameter and function controls.

  20. Materials design by evolutionary optimization of functional groups in metal-organic frameworks.

    PubMed

    Collins, Sean P; Daff, Thomas D; Piotrkowski, Sarah S; Woo, Tom K

    2016-11-01

    A genetic algorithm that efficiently optimizes a desired physical or functional property in metal-organic frameworks (MOFs) by evolving the functional groups within the pores has been developed. The approach has been used to optimize the CO2 uptake capacity of 141 experimentally characterized MOFs under conditions relevant for postcombustion CO2 capture. A total search space of 1.65 trillion structures was screened, and 1035 derivatives of 23 different parent MOFs were identified as having exceptional CO2 uptakes of >3.0 mmol/g (at 0.15 atm and 298 K). Many well-known MOF platforms were optimized, with some, such as MIL-47, having their CO2 adsorption increase by more than 400%. The structures of the high-performing MOFs are provided as potential targets for synthesis.

  1. Materials design by evolutionary optimization of functional groups in metal-organic frameworks

    PubMed Central

    Collins, Sean P.; Daff, Thomas D.; Piotrkowski, Sarah S.; Woo, Tom K.

    2016-01-01

    A genetic algorithm that efficiently optimizes a desired physical or functional property in metal-organic frameworks (MOFs) by evolving the functional groups within the pores has been developed. The approach has been used to optimize the CO2 uptake capacity of 141 experimentally characterized MOFs under conditions relevant for postcombustion CO2 capture. A total search space of 1.65 trillion structures was screened, and 1035 derivatives of 23 different parent MOFs were identified as having exceptional CO2 uptakes of >3.0 mmol/g (at 0.15 atm and 298 K). Many well-known MOF platforms were optimized, with some, such as MIL-47, having their CO2 adsorption increase by more than 400%. The structures of the high-performing MOFs are provided as potential targets for synthesis. PMID:28138523

  2. Optimization of head movement recognition using Augmented Radial Basis Function Neural Network.

    PubMed

    Yuwono, Mitchell; Handojoseno, A M Ardi; Nguyen, H T

    2011-01-01

    For people with severe spine injury, head movement recognition control has been proven to be one of the most convenient and intuitive ways to control a power wheelchair. While substantial research has been done in this area, the challenge to improve system reliability and accuracy remains due to the diversity in movement tendencies and the presence of movement artifacts. We propose a Neural-Network Configuration which we call Augmented Radial Basis Function Neural-Network (ARBF-NN). This network is constructed as a Radial Basis Function Neural-Network (RBF-NN) with a Multilayer Perceptron (MLP) augmentation layer to negate optimization limitation posed by linear classifiers in conventional RBF-NN. The RBF centroid is optimized through Regrouping Particle Swarm Optimization (RegPSO) seeded with K-Means. The trial results of ARBF-NN on Head-movement show a significant improvement on recognition accuracy up to 98.1% in sensitivity.

  3. Optimal tradeoff circular harmonic function correlation filter methods providing controlled in-plane rotation response.

    PubMed

    Vijaya Kumar, B K; Mahalanobis, A; Takessian, A

    2000-01-01

    Correlation methods are becoming increasingly attractive tools for image recognition and location. This renewed interest in correlation methods is spurred by the availability of high-speed image processors and the emergence of correlation filter designs that can optimize relevant figures of merit. In this paper, a new correlation filter design method is presented that allows one to optimally tradeoff among potentially conflicting correlation output performance criteria while achieving desired correlation peak value behavior in response to in-plane rotation of input images. Such controlled in-plane rotation response is useful in image analysis and pattern recognition applications where the sensor follows a pre-arranged trajectory while imaging an object. Since this new correlation filter design is based on circular harmonic function (CHF) theory, we refer to the resulting filters as optimal tradeoff circular harmonic function (OTCHF) filters. Underlying theory, OTCHF filter design method, and illustrative numerical results are presented.

  4. E. coli chaperones DnaK, Hsp33 and Spy inhibit bacterial functional amyloid assembly.

    PubMed

    Evans, Margery L; Schmidt, Jens C; Ilbert, Marianne; Doyle, Shannon M; Quan, Shu; Bardwell, James C A; Jakob, Ursula; Wickner, Sue; Chapman, Matthew R

    2011-01-01

    Amyloid formation is an ordered aggregation process, where β-sheet rich polymers are assembled from unstructured or partially folded monomers. We examined how two Escherichia coli cytosolic chaperones, DnaK and Hsp33, and a more recently characterized periplasmic chaperone, Spy, modulate the aggregation of a functional amyloid protein, CsgA. We found that DnaK, the Hsp70 homologue in E. coli, and Hsp33, a redox-regulated holdase, potently inhibited CsgA amyloidogenesis. The Hsp33 anti-amyloidogenesis activity was oxidation dependent, as oxidized Hsp33 was significantly more efficient than reduced Hsp33 at preventing CsgA aggregation. When soluble CsgA was seeded with preformed amyloid fibers, neither Hsp33 nor DnaK were able to efficiently prevent soluble CsgA from adopting the amyloid conformation. Moreover, both DnaK and Hsp33 increased the time that CsgA was reactive with the amyloid oligomer conformation-specific A11 antibody. Since CsgA must also pass through the periplasm during secretion, we assessed the ability of the periplasmic chaperone Spy to inhibit CsgA polymerization. Like DnaK and Hsp33, Spy also inhibited CsgA polymerization in vitro. Overexpression of Spy resulted in increased chaperone activity in periplasmic extracts and in reduced curli biogenesis in vivo. We propose that DnaK, Hsp33 and Spy exert their effects during the nucleation stages of CsgA fibrillation. Thus, both housekeeping and stress induced cytosolic and periplasmic chaperones may be involved in discouraging premature CsgA interactions during curli biogenesis.

  5. E. coli chaperones DnaK, Hsp33 and Spy inhibit bacterial functional amyloid assembly

    PubMed Central

    Evans, Margery L; Schmidt, Jens C; Ilbert, Marianne; Doyle, Shannon M; Quan, Shu; Bardwell, James CA; Jakob, Ursula; Wickner, Sue

    2011-01-01

    Amyloid formation is an ordered aggregation process, where β-sheet rich polymers are assembled from unstructured or partially folded monomers. We examined how two Escherichia coli cytosolic chaperones, DnaK and Hsp33, and a more recently characterized periplasmic chaperone, Spy, modulate the aggregation of a functional amyloid protein, CsgA. We found that DnaK, the Hsp70 homolog in E. coli, and Hsp33, a redox-regulated holdase, potently inhibited CsgA amyloidogenesis. The Hsp33 anti-amyloidogenesis activity was oxidation dependent, as oxidized Hsp33 was significantly more efficient than reduced Hsp33 at preventing CsgA aggregation. When soluble CsgA was seeded with preformed amyloid fibers, neither Hsp33 nor DnaK were able to efficiently prevent soluble CsgA from adopting the amyloid conformation. Moreover, both DnaK and Hsp33 increased the time that CsgA was reactive with the amyloid oligomer conformation-specific A11 antibody. Since CsgA must also pass through the periplasm during secretion, we assessed the ability of the periplasmic chaperone Spy to inhibit CsgA polymerization. Like DnaK and Hsp33, Spy also inhibited CsgA polymerization in vitro. Overexpression of Spy resulted in increased chaperone activity in periplasmic extracts and in reduced curli biogenesis in vivo. We propose that DnaK, Hsp33 and Spy exert their effects during the nucleation stages of CsgA fibrillation. Thus, both housekeeping and stress induced cytosolic and periplasmic chaperones may be involved in discouraging premature CsgA interactions during curli biogenesis. PMID:22156728

  6. Functional networks of motor inhibition in conversion disorder patients and feigning subjects.

    PubMed

    Hassa, Thomas; de Jel, Esther; Tuescher, Oliver; Schmidt, Roger; Schoenfeld, Mircea Ariel

    2016-01-01

    The neural correlates of motor inhibition leading to paresis in conversion disorder are not well known. The key question is whether they are different of those of normal subjects feigning the symptoms. Thirteen conversion disorder patients with hemiparesis and twelve healthy controls were investigated using functional magnetic resonance tomography under conditions of passive motor stimulation of the paretic/feigned paretic and the non-paretic hand. Healthy controls were also investigated in a non-feigning condition. During passive movement of the affected right hand conversion disorder patients exhibited activations in the bilateral triangular part of the inferior frontal gyri (IFG), with a left side dominance compared to controls in non-feigning condition. Feigning controls revealed for the same condition a weak unilateral activation in the right triangular part of IFG and an activity decrease in frontal midline areas, which couldn't be observed in patients. The results suggest that motor inhibition in conversion disorder patients is mediated by the IFG that was also involved in inhibition processes in normal subjects. The activity pattern in feigning controls resembled that of conversion disorder patients but with a clear difference in the medial prefrontal cortex. Healthy controls showed decreased activity in this region during feigning compared to non-feigning conditions suggesting a reduced sense of self-agency during feigning. Remarkably, no activity differences could be observed in medial prefrontal cortex for patients vs healthy controls in feigning or non-feigning conditions suggesting self-agency related activity in patients to be in between those of non-feigning and feigning healthy subjects.

  7. α-Synuclein Fibrils Exhibit Gain of Toxic Function, Promoting Tau Aggregation and Inhibiting Microtubule Assembly.

    PubMed

    Oikawa, Takayuki; Nonaka, Takashi; Terada, Makoto; Tamaoka, Akira; Hisanaga, Shin-Ichi; Hasegawa, Masato

    2016-07-15

    α-Synuclein is the major component of Lewy bodies and Lewy neurites in Parkinson disease and dementia with Lewy bodies and of glial cytoplasmic inclusions in multiple system atrophy. It has been suggested that α-synuclein fibrils or intermediate protofibrils in the process of fibril formation may have a toxic effect on neuronal cells. In this study, we investigated the ability of soluble monomeric α-synuclein to promote microtubule assembly and the effects of conformational changes of α-synuclein on Tau-promoted microtubule assembly. In marked contrast to previous findings, monomeric α-synuclein had no effect on microtubule polymerization. However, both α-synuclein fibrils and protofibrils inhibited Tau-promoted microtubule assembly. The inhibitory effect of α-synuclein fibrils was greater than that of the protofibrils. Dot blot overlay assay and spin-down techniques revealed that α-synuclein fibrils bind to Tau and inhibit microtubule assembly by depleting the Tau available for microtubule polymerization. Using various deletion mutants of α-synuclein and Tau, the acidic C-terminal region of α-synuclein and the basic central region of Tau were identified as regions involved in the binding. Furthermore, introduction of α-synuclein fibrils into cultured cells overexpressing Tau protein induced Tau aggregation. These results raise the possibility that α-synuclein fibrils interact with Tau, inhibit its function to stabilize microtubules, and also promote Tau aggregation, leading to dysfunction of neuronal cells. © 2016 by The American Society for Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, Inc.

  8. Glycoxidized HDL, HDL enriched with oxidized phospholipids and HDL from diabetic patients inhibit platelet function

    PubMed Central

    Lê, Quang Huy; El Alaoui, Meddy; Véricel, Evelyne; Ségrestin, Bérénice; Soulère, Laurent; Guichardant, Michel; Lagarde, Michel; Moulin, Philippe; Calzada, Catherine

    2015-01-01

    Context High-density lipoproteins (HDL) possess atheroprotective properties including anti-thrombotic and antioxidant effects. Very few studies relate to the functional effects of oxidized HDL on platelets in type 2 diabetes (T2D). Objective The objective of our study was to investigate the effects of in vitro glycoxidized HDL, and HDL from T2D patients on platelet aggregation and arachidonic acid signaling cascade. At the same time, the contents of hydroxylated fatty acids were assessed in HDL. Results Compared to control HDL, in vitro glycoxidized HDL had decreased proportions of linoleic (LA) and arachidonic (AA) acids in phospholipids and cholesteryl esters, and increased concentrations of hydroxy-octadecadienoic acids (9-HODE and 13-HODE) and 15-hydroxy-eicosatetraenoic acid (15-HETE), derived from LA and AA respectively, especially hydroxy derivatives esterified in phospholipids. Glycoxidized HDL dose-dependently decreased collagen-induced platelet aggregation by binding to SR-BI. Glycoxidized HDL prevented collagen-induced increased phosphorylation of platelet p38 MAPK and cytosolic phospholipase A2, as well as intracellular calcium mobilization. HDL enriched with oxidized phospholipids, namely PC(16:0/13-HODE) dose-dependently inhibited platelet aggregation. Increased concentrations of 9-HODE, 13-HODE and 15-HETE in phospholipids (2.1, 2.1 and 2.4-fold increase respectively) were found in HDL from patients with T2D, and these HDL also inhibited platelet aggregation via SR-BI. Conclusions Altogether, our results indicate that in vitro glycoxidized HDL as well as HDL from T2D patients inhibit platelet aggregation, and suggest that oxidized LA-containing phospholipids may contribute to the anti-aggregatory effects of glycoxidized HDL and HDL from T2D patients. PMID:25794249

  9. Exercise inhibits neuronal apoptosis and improves cerebral function following rat traumatic brain injury.

    PubMed

    Itoh, Tatsuki; Imano, Motohiro; Nishida, Shozo; Tsubaki, Masahiro; Hashimoto, Shigeo; Ito, Akihiko; Satou, Takao

    2011-09-01

    Exercise is reported to inhibit neuronal apoptotic cell death in the hippocampus and improve learning and memory. However, the effect of exercise on inhibition of neuronal apoptosis surrounding the area of damage after traumatic brain injury (TBI) and the improvement of cerebral dysfunction following TBI are unknown. Here, we investigate the effect of exercise on morphology and cerebral function following TBI in rats. Wistar rats received TBI by a pneumatic controlled injury device were randomly divided into two groups: (1) non-exercise group and (2) exercise group. The exercise group ran on a treadmill for 30 min/day at 22 m/min for seven consecutive days. Immunohistochemical and behavioral studies were performed following TBI. The number of single-stranded DNA (ssDNA)-positive cells around the damaged area early after TBI was significantly reduced in the exercise group compared with the non-exercise group (P < 0.05). Furthermore, most ssDNA-positive cells in the non-exercise group co-localized with neuronal cells. However, in the exercise group, a few ssDNA-positive cells co-localized with neurons. In addition, there was a significant increase in neuronal cell number and improvement in cerebral dysfunction after TBI in the exercise group compared with the non-exercise group (P < 0.05). These results indicate that exercise following TBI inhibits neuronal degeneration and apoptotic cell death around the damaged area, which results in improvement of cerebral dysfunction. In summary, treadmill running improved cerebral dysfunction following TBI, indicating its potential as an effective clinical therapy. Therefore, exercise therapy (rehabilitation) in the early phase following TBI is important for recuperation from cerebral dysfunction.

  10. Bivalirudin inhibits periprocedural platelet function and tissue factor expression of human smooth muscle cells.

    PubMed

    Pepke, Wojciech; Eisenreich, Andreas; Jaster, Markus; Ayral, Yunus; Bobbert, Peter; Mayer, Alexander; Schultheiss, Heinz-Peter; Rauch, Ursula

    2013-04-01

    A major concern of stent implantation after percutaneous coronary intervention (PCI) is acute stent thrombosis. Effective inhibition of periprocedural platelet function in patients with coronary artery disease (CAD) leads to an improved outcome. In this study, we examined the periprocedural platelet reactivity after administrating bivalirudin during PCI compared to unfractionated heparin (UFH) administration. Further, the effect of bivalirudin on induced tissue factor (TF) expression in smooth muscle cells (SMC) was determined. Patients with CAD (n = 58) and double antithrombotic medication were treated intraprocedural with UFH (n = 30) or bivalirudin (n = 28). Platelet activation markers were flow cytometrically measured before and after stenting. The expression of TF in SMC was determined by real-time PCR and Western blotting. The thrombogenicity of platelet-derived microparticles and SMC was assessed via a TF activity assay. Bivalirudin significantly diminished the agonist-induced platelet reactivity post-PCI. Compared to UFH treatment, the adenosine diphosphate (ADP) and thrombin receptor-activating peptide (TRAP)-induced thrombospondin expression post-PCI was reduced when bivalirudin was administrated during intervention. In contrast to UFH, bivalirudin reduced the P-selectin expression of unstimulated and ADP-induced platelets post-PCI. Moreover, bivalirudin inhibited the thrombin-, but not FVIIa- or FVIIa/FX-induced TF expression and pro-coagulant TF activity of SMC. Moreover, bivalirudin reduced the TF activity of platelet-derived microparticles postinduction with TRAP or ADP. Bivalirudin is better than UFH in reducing periprocedural platelet activation. Moreover, thrombin-induced TF expression is inhibited by bivalirudin. Thus, bivalirudin seems to be a better anticoagulant during PCI than UFH. © 2011 Blackwell Publishing Ltd.

  11. Pycnogenol Ameliorates Asthmatic Airway Inflammation and Inhibits the Function of Goblet Cells.

    PubMed

    Liu, Zhaoe; Han, Bo; Chen, Xing; Wu, Qiaoling; Wang, Lijun; Li, Gang

    2016-11-01

    Pycnogenol(®) (PYC) is utilized in the treatment of various diseases ranging from chronic inflammation to circulatory diseases, but its efficacy and functional mechanism in pediatric asthma continue to remain obscure. Therefore, the purpose of this study was to investigate the effectiveness and molecular mechanism of PYC on regulation of asthmatic airway inflammation. We found that PYC with tail intravenous injection of 50 mg/kg or intragastric administration of 100 mg/kg all reduced ovalbumin (OVA)-induced airway injury. Pharmacokinetics of PYC was evaluated by high-performance liquid chromatography assay, indicating that PYC was quickly absorbed into the blood after intragastric administration, and PYC metabolism was later improved gradually with increase of time after PYC administration. PYC has a higher bioavailability of 71.96%, and it was more easily absorbed by the body. PYC inhibited the number of total inflammatory cells and levels of interleukin (IL)-4, IL-5, IL-9, and IL-13 in bronchoalveolar lavage fluid of OVA-induced mice. PYC inhibited IL-13 secretion from the Th2 cells, thereby causing a reduction in expression of the signaling molecules in JAK/STAT6 pathway in airway epithelial cells. STAT6 silence suppressed IL-13-increased acetylcholine level. STAT6 overexpression promoted expression of goblet cell metaplasia-associated molecules (FOXA3, SPDEF, and Muc5ac). PYC suppressed OVA-induced expression of FOXA3, SPDEF, and Muc5ac in lung. Our findings indicate that PYC has a higher bioavailability and it prevents emergence of OVA-induced airway injury and airway inflammation in mice by inhibiting IL-13/JAK/STAT6 pathway and blocking release of acetylcholine to reduce goblet cell metaplasia.

  12. Glycoxidized HDL, HDL enriched with oxidized phospholipids and HDL from diabetic patients inhibit platelet function.

    PubMed

    Lê, Quang Huy; El Alaoui, Meddy; Véricel, Evelyne; Ségrestin, Bérénice; Soulère, Laurent; Guichardant, Michel; Lagarde, Michel; Moulin, Philippe; Calzada, Catherine

    2015-05-01

    High-density lipoproteins (HDL) possess atheroprotective properties including anti-thrombotic and antioxidant effects. Very few studies relate to the functional effects of oxidized HDL on platelets in type 2 diabetes (T2D). The objective of our study was to investigate the effects of in vitro glycoxidized HDL and HDL from patients with T2D on platelet aggregation and arachidonic acid signaling cascade. At the same time, the contents of hydroxylated fatty acids were assessed in HDL. Compared with control HDL, in vitro glycoxidized HDL had decreased proportions of linoleic (LA) and arachidonic (AA) acids in phospholipids and cholesteryl esters, and increased concentrations of hydroxy-octadecadienoic acids (9-HODE and 13-HODE) and 15-hydroxy-eicosatetraenoic acid (15-HETE), derived from LA and AA respectively, especially hydroxy derivatives esterified in phospholipids. Glycoxidized HDL dose-dependently decreased collagen-induced platelet aggregation by binding to scavenger receptor BI (SR-BI). Glycoxidized HDL prevented collagen-induced increased phosphorylation of platelet p38 MAPK and cytosolic phospholipase A2, as well as intracellular calcium mobilization. HDL enriched with oxidized phosphatidylcholine (PC), namely PC(16:0/13-HODE) dose-dependently inhibited platelet aggregation. Increased concentrations of 9-HODE, 13-HODE, and 15-HETE in phospholipids (2.1-, 2.1-, and 2.4-fold increase, respectively) were found in HDL from patients with T2D, and these HDL also inhibited platelet aggregation via SR-BI. Our results suggest that in vitro glycoxidized HDL as well as HDL from patients with T2D inhibit platelet aggregation, and suggest that oxidized LA-containing phospholipids may contribute to the anti-aggregatory effects of glycoxidized HDL and HDL from patients with T2D.

  13. High molecular weight kininogen inhibition of endothelial cell function on biomaterials.

    PubMed

    Voskerician, G; Anderson, J M; Ziats, N P

    2000-07-01

    Synthetic vascular grafts implanted into humans fail to develop a complete endothelial lining. In previous studies, we have shown that high-molecular-weight kininogens (HMWK) adsorb to the surfaces of biomaterials. In addition, it has been demonstrated that these proteins modulate cellular function. In the present study, we report on the adhesion and proliferation of human umbilical-vein endothelial cells (HUVEC) on tissue culture polystyrene, glass, polyurethane, and Mylar(trade mark) surfaces coated with human HMWK, either single-chain HMWK (SC-HMWK) or double-chain HMWK (DC-HMWK). Surfaces coated with fibronectin served as a positive control for these experiments. Parallel experiments were performed in which HUVEC were allowed to migrate from crosslinked dextran microcarrier beads (Cytodex 2) onto HMWK-coated surfaces. Our results indicate that HMWK-coated surfaces inhibit endothelial cell adhesion, proliferation, and migration at 24 and 72 h, and this inhibition is concentration dependent. To determine a potential mechanism for this inhibitory phenomenon, cells were stained for cytoskeletal actin filaments using rhodamine-phalloidin. Endothelial cells on HMWK-coated surfaces displayed F-actin filament reorganization/disassembly, characterized by the absence of peripheral actin bands in focal adhesion contacts. We conclude that HMWK inhibit endothelial cell adhesion, proliferation, and migration on a variety of biomaterial surfaces. This inhibitory effect may play a role in promoting the lack of endothelialization in synthetic vascular grafts, which is thought to play a significant role in the failure of these devices. Copyright 2000 John Wiley & Sons, Inc.

  14. Environmental contaminants perturb fragile protein assemblies and inhibit normal protein function.

    PubMed

    Lawrence, Sarah H; Selwood, Trevor; Jaffe, Eileen K

    2013-01-01

    The molecular mechanisms whereby small molecules that contaminate our environment cause physiological effects are largely unknown, in terms of both targets and mechanisms. The essential human enzyme porphobilinogen synthase (HsPBGS, a.k.a. 5-aminolevulinate dehydratase, ALAD) functions in heme biosynthesis. HsPBGS catalytic activity is regulated allosterically via an equilibrium of inactive hexamers and active octamers, and we have shown that certain drugs and drug-like small molecules can inhibit HsPBGS in vitro by stabilizing the hexamer. Here we address whether components of the National Toxicology Program library of environmental contaminants can stabilize the HsPBGS hexamer and inhibit activity in vitro. Native polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis was used to screen the library (1,408 compounds) for components that alter the oligomeric distribution of HsPBGS. Freshly purchased samples of 37 preliminary hits were used to confirm the electrophoretic results and to determine the dose-dependence of the perturbation of oligomeric distribution. Seventeen compounds were identified which alter the oligomeric distribution toward the hexamer and also inhibit HsPBGS catalytic activity, including the most potent HsPBGS inhibitor yet characterized (Mutagen X, IC50 = 1.4 μM). PBGS dysfunction is associated with the inborn error of metabolism know as ALAD porphyria and with lead poisoning. The identified hexamer-stabilizing inhibitors could potentiate these diseases. Allosteric regulation of activity via an equilibrium of alternate oligomers has been proposed for many proteins. Based on the precedent set herein, perturbation of these oligomeric equilibria by small molecules (such as environmental contaminants) can be considered as a mechanism of toxicity.

  15. Towards an Optimal Gradient-dependent Energy Functional of the PZ-SIC Form

    DOE PAGES

    Jónsson, Elvar Örn; Lehtola, Susi; Jónsson, Hannes

    2015-06-01

    Results of Perdew–Zunger self-interaction corrected (PZ-SIC) density functional theory calculations of the atomization energy of 35 molecules are compared to those of high-level quantum chemistry calculations. While the PBE functional, which is commonly used in calculations of condensed matter, is known to predict on average too high atomization energy (overbinding of the molecules), the application of PZ-SIC gives a large overcorrection and leads to significant underestimation of the atomization energy. The exchange enhancement factor that is optimal for the generalized gradient approximation within the Kohn-Sham (KS) approach may not be optimal for the self-interaction corrected functional. The PBEsol functional, wheremore » the exchange enhancement factor was optimized for solids, gives poor results for molecules in KS but turns out to work better than PBE in PZ-SIC calculations. The exchange enhancement is weaker in PBEsol and the functional is closer to the local density approximation. Furthermore, the drop in the exchange enhancement factor for increasing reduced gradient in the PW91 functional gives more accurate results than the plateaued enhancement in the PBE functional. A step towards an optimal exchange enhancement factor for a gradient dependent functional of the PZ-SIC form is taken by constructing an exchange enhancement factor that mimics PBEsol for small values of the reduced gradient, and PW91 for large values. The average atomization energy is then in closer agreement with the high-level quantum chemistry calculations, but the variance is still large, the F2 molecule being a notable outlier.« less

  16. Towards an Optimal Gradient-dependent Energy Functional of the PZ-SIC Form

    SciTech Connect

    Jónsson, Elvar Örn; Lehtola, Susi; Jónsson, Hannes

    2015-06-01

    Results of Perdew–Zunger self-interaction corrected (PZ-SIC) density functional theory calculations of the atomization energy of 35 molecules are compared to those of high-level quantum chemistry calculations. While the PBE functional, which is commonly used in calculations of condensed matter, is known to predict on average too high atomization energy (overbinding of the molecules), the application of PZ-SIC gives a large overcorrection and leads to significant underestimation of the atomization energy. The exchange enhancement factor that is optimal for the generalized gradient approximation within the Kohn-Sham (KS) approach may not be optimal for the self-interaction corrected functional. The PBEsol functional, where the exchange enhancement factor was optimized for solids, gives poor results for molecules in KS but turns out to work better than PBE in PZ-SIC calculations. The exchange enhancement is weaker in PBEsol and the functional is closer to the local density approximation. Furthermore, the drop in the exchange enhancement factor for increasing reduced gradient in the PW91 functional gives more accurate results than the plateaued enhancement in the PBE functional. A step towards an optimal exchange enhancement factor for a gradient dependent functional of the PZ-SIC form is taken by constructing an exchange enhancement factor that mimics PBEsol for small values of the reduced gradient, and PW91 for large values. The average atomization energy is then in closer agreement with the high-level quantum chemistry calculations, but the variance is still large, the F2 molecule being a notable outlier.

  17. Nonlinear stability in reaction-diffusion systems via optimal Lyapunov functions

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lombardo, S.; Mulone, G.; Trovato, M.

    2008-06-01

    We define optimal Lyapunov functions to study nonlinear stability of constant solutions to reaction-diffusion systems. A computable and finite radius of attraction for the initial data is obtained. Applications are given to the well-known Brusselator model and a three-species model for the spatial spread of rabies among foxes.

  18. A Linear Programming Model to Optimize Various Objective Functions of a Foundation Type State Support Program.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Matzke, Orville R.

    The purpose of this study was to formulate a linear programming model to simulate a foundation type support program and to apply this model to a state support program for the public elementary and secondary school districts in the State of Iowa. The model was successful in producing optimal solutions to five objective functions proposed for…

  19. Balancing Multicultural Competence with Social Justice: Feminist Beliefs and Optimal Psychological Functioning

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Yoder, Janice D.; Snell, Andrea F.; Tobias, Ann

    2012-01-01

    To identify a multivariate configuration of feminist beliefs best associated with optimal psychological functioning, 215 mostly White college women completed an online survey measuring their feminist beliefs (Feminist Perspectives Scale, Attitudes toward Feminism and the Women's Movement, sense of common fate, and Feminist Identity Composite) and…

  20. Optimization of the coherence function estimation for multi-core central processing unit

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cheremnov, A. G.; Faerman, V. A.; Avramchuk, V. S.

    2017-02-01

    The paper considers use of parallel processing on multi-core central processing unit for optimization of the coherence function evaluation arising in digital signal processing. Coherence function along with other methods of spectral analysis is commonly used for vibration diagnosis of rotating machinery and its particular nodes. An algorithm is given for the function evaluation for signals represented with digital samples. The algorithm is analyzed for its software implementation and computational problems. Optimization measures are described, including algorithmic, architecture and compiler optimization, their results are assessed for multi-core processors from different manufacturers. Thus, speeding-up of the parallel execution with respect to sequential execution was studied and results are presented for Intel Core i7-4720HQ и AMD FX-9590 processors. The results show comparatively high efficiency of the optimization measures taken. In particular, acceleration indicators and average CPU utilization have been significantly improved, showing high degree of parallelism of the constructed calculating functions. The developed software underwent state registration and will be used as a part of a software and hardware solution for rotating machinery fault diagnosis and pipeline leak location with acoustic correlation method.

  1. Balancing Multicultural Competence with Social Justice: Feminist Beliefs and Optimal Psychological Functioning

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Yoder, Janice D.; Snell, Andrea F.; Tobias, Ann

    2012-01-01

    To identify a multivariate configuration of feminist beliefs best associated with optimal psychological functioning, 215 mostly White college women completed an online survey measuring their feminist beliefs (Feminist Perspectives Scale, Attitudes toward Feminism and the Women's Movement, sense of common fate, and Feminist Identity Composite) and…

  2. Feedback Functions, Optimization, and the Relation of Response Rate to Reinforcer Rate

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Soto, Paul L.; McDowell, Jack J.; Dallery, Jesse

    2006-01-01

    The present experiment arranged a series of inverted U-shaped feedback functions relating reinforcer rate to response rate to test whether responding was consistent with an optimization account or with a one-to-one relation of response rate to reinforcer rate such as linear system theory's rate equation or Herrnstein's hyperbola. Reinforcer rate…

  3. Application of Sigmoidal Transformation Functions in Optimization of Micellar Liquid Chromatographic Separation of Six Quinolone Antibiotics.

    PubMed

    Hadjmohammadi, Mohammadreza; Salary, Mina

    2016-03-01

    A chemometrics approach has been used to optimize the separation of six quinolone compounds by micellar liquid chromatography (MLC). A Derringer's desirability function, a multicriteria decision-making (MCDM) method, was tested for evaluation of two different measures of chromatographic performance (resolution and analysis time). The effect of three experimental parameters on a chromatographic response function (CRF) expressed as a product of two sigmoidal desirability functions was investigated. The sigmoidal functions were used to transform the optimization criteria, resolution and analysis time into the desirability values. The factors studied were the concentration of sodium dodecyl sulfate, butanol content and pH of the mobile phase. The experiments were done according to the face-centered cube central composite design, and the calculated CRF values were fitted to a polynomial model to correlate the CRF values with the variables and their interactions. The developed regression model showed good descriptive and predictive ability (R(2) = 0.815, F = 6.919, SE = 0.038, [Formula: see text]) and used, by a grid search algorithm, to optimize the chromatographic conditions for the separation of the mixture. The efficiency of prediction of polynomial model was confirmed by performing the experiment under the optimal conditions.

  4. The optimization of single mode basis functions for polyatomic vibrational problems with application to the water molecule

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Schwenke, David W.

    1992-01-01

    The optimization of the wave functions is considered for coupled vibrations represented by linear combinations of products of functions depending only on a single vibrational coordinate. The functions themselves are optimized as well as configuration list. For the H2O molecule highly accurate results are obtained for the lowest 15 levels using significantly shorter expansions than would otherwise be possible.

  5. HEMA inhibits interfacial nano-layering of the functional monomer MDP.

    PubMed

    Yoshida, Y; Yoshihara, K; Hayakawa, S; Nagaoka, N; Okihara, T; Matsumoto, T; Minagi, S; Osaka, A; Van Landuyt, K; Van Meerbeek, B

    2012-11-01

    Previous research showed that the functional monomer 10-methacryloxydecyl dihydrogen phosphate (MDP) ionically bonds to hydroxyapatite (HAp) and forms a nano-layered structure at the interface with HAp-based substrates. Such hydrophobic nano-layering is considered to contribute to the long-term durability of the bond to tooth tissue. However, dental adhesives are complex mixtures usually containing different monomers. This study investigated the effect of the monomer 2-hydroxyethylmethacrylate (HEMA) on the chemical interaction of MDP with HAp by x-ray diffraction (XRD), nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR), and quartz crystal microbalance (QCM). We examined the chemical interaction of 5 experimental MDP solutions with increasing concentrations of HEMA. XRD revealed that addition of HEMA inhibits nano-layering at the interface, while NMR confirmed that MDP remained adsorbed onto the HAp surface. QCM confirmed this adsorption of MDP to HAp, as well as revealed that the demineralization rate of HAp by MDP was reduced by HEMA. It was concluded that even though the adsorption of MDP to HAp was not hindered, addition of HEMA inhibited interfacial nano-layering. Potential consequences with regard to bond durability necessitate further research.

  6. Acupuncture-mediated inhibition of inflammation facilitates significant functional recovery after spinal cord injury.

    PubMed

    Choi, Doo C; Lee, Jee Y; Moon, Youn J; Kim, Shin W; Oh, Tae H; Yune, Tae Y

    2010-09-01

    Here, we first demonstrated the neuroprotective effect of acupuncture after SCI. Acupuncture applied at two specific acupoints, Shuigou (GV26) and Yanglingquan (GB34) significantly alleviated apoptotic cell death of neurons and oligodendrocytes, thereby leading to improved functional recovery after SCI. Acupuncture also inhibited caspase-3 activation and reduced the size of lesion cavity and extent of loss of axons. We also found that the activation of both p38 mitogen-activated protein kinase and resident microglia after injury are significantly attenuated by acupuncture. In addition, acupuncture significantly reduced the expression or activation of pro-nerve growth factor, proinflammatory factors such as tumor necrosis factor-alpha, interleukin-1beta, interleukin-6, nitric oxide synthase, cycloxygenase-2, and matrix metalloprotease-9 after SCI. Thus, our results suggest that the neuroprotection by acupuncture may be partly mediated via inhibition of inflammation and microglial activation after SCI and acupuncture can be used as a potential therapeutic tool for treating acute spinal injury in human.

  7. The bacterial virulence factor NleA inhibits cellular protein secretion by disrupting mammalian COPII function.

    PubMed

    Kim, Jinoh; Thanabalasuriar, Ajitha; Chaworth-Musters, Tessa; Fromme, J Chris; Frey, Elizabeth A; Lario, Paula I; Metalnikov, Pavel; Rizg, Keyrillos; Thomas, Nikhil A; Lee, Sau Fung; Hartland, Elizabeth L; Hardwidge, Philip R; Pawson, Tony; Strynadka, Natalie C; Finlay, B Brett; Schekman, Randy; Gruenheid, Samantha

    2007-09-13

    Enterohemorrhagic and enteropathogenic Escherichia coli (EHEC and EPEC) maintain an extracellular lifestyle and use a type III secretion system to translocate effector proteins into the host cytosol. These effectors manipulate host pathways to favor bacterial replication and survival. NleA is an EHEC/EPEC- and related species-specific translocated effector protein that is essential for bacterial virulence. However, the mechanism by which NleA impacts virulence remains undetermined. Here we demonstrate that NleA compromises the Sec23/24 complex, a component of the mammalian COPII protein coat that shapes intracellular protein transport vesicles, by directly binding Sec24. Expression of an NleA-GFP fusion protein reduces the efficiency of cellular secretion by 50%, and secretion is inhibited in EPEC-infected cells. Direct biochemical experiments show that NleA inhibits COPII-dependent protein export from the endoplasmic reticulum. Collectively, these findings indicate that disruption of COPII function in host cells contributes to the virulence of EPEC and EHEC.

  8. Cabergoline reduces cell viability in non functioning pituitary adenomas by inhibiting vascular endothelial growth factor secretion.

    PubMed

    Gagliano, Teresa; Filieri, Carlo; Minoia, Mariella; Buratto, Mattia; Tagliati, Federico; Ambrosio, Maria Rosaria; Lapparelli, Marcello; Zoli, Matteo; Frank, Giorgio; degli Uberti, Ettore; Zatelli, Maria Chiara

    2013-03-01

    Dopamine (DA) therapy of non-functioning pituitary adenomas (NFA) can result in tumor stabilization and shrinkage. However, the mechanism of action is still unknown. Previous evidence showed that DA can inhibit pituitary vascular endothelial growth factor expression (VEGF), that may be involved in pituitary tumor growth. The aim of our study was to clarify whether VEGF secretion modulation might mediate the effects of DA agonists on cell proliferation in human NFA. We assessed DA receptor subtype 2 (DR2) expression in 20 NFA primary cultures, where we also investigated the effects of a selective DR2 agonist, cabergoline (Cab), on VEGF secretion and on cell viability. All NFA samples expressed α-subunit and DR2 was expressed in 11 samples. In DR2 expressing tumors, Cab significantly reduced cell viability (-25%; P < 0.05) and VEGF secretion (-20%; P < 0.05). These effects were counteracted by treatment with the DA antagonist sulpiride. Cab antiproliferative effects were blocked by VEGF. Our data demonstrate that Cab, via DR2, inhibits cell viability also by reducing VEGF secretion in a selected group of NFA, supporting that DA agonists can be useful in the medical therapy of DR2 expressing NFA.

  9. PIK3C2B inhibition improves function and prolongs survival in myotubular myopathy animal models

    PubMed Central

    Sabha, Nesrin; Volpatti, Jonathan R.; Gonorazky, Hernan; Davidson, Ann E.; Li, Xingli; Eltayeb, Nadine M.; Dall’Armi, Claudia; Di Paolo, Gilbert; Brooks, Susan V.; Buj-Bello, Ana; Feldman, Eva L.; Dowling, James J.

    2016-01-01

    Myotubular myopathy (MTM) is a devastating pediatric neuromuscular disorder of phosphoinositide (PIP) metabolism resulting from mutations of the PIP phosphatase MTM1 for which there are no treatments. We have previously shown phosphatidylinositol-3-phosphate (PI3P) accumulation in animal models of MTM. Here, we tested the hypothesis that lowering PI3P levels may prevent or reverse the MTM disease process. To test this, we targeted class II and III PI3 kinases (PI3Ks) in an MTM1-deficient mouse model. Muscle-specific ablation of Pik3c2b, but not Pik3c3, resulted in complete prevention of the MTM phenotype, and postsymptomatic targeting promoted a striking rescue of disease. We confirmed this genetic interaction in zebrafish, and additionally showed that certain PI3K inhibitors prevented development of the zebrafish mtm phenotype. Finally, the PI3K inhibitor wortmannin improved motor function and prolonged lifespan of the Mtm1-deficient mice. In all, we have identified Pik3c2b as a genetic modifier of Mtm1 mutation and demonstrated that PIK3C2B inhibition is a potential treatment strategy for MTM. In addition, we set the groundwork for similar reciprocal inhibition approaches for treating other PIP metabolic disorders and highlight the importance of modifier gene pathways as therapeutic targets. PMID:27548528

  10. Connexin43 with a cytoplasmic loop deletion inhibits the function of several connexins

    PubMed Central

    Wang, Min; Martínez, Agustín D.; Berthoud, Viviana M.; Seul, Kyung H.; Gemel, Joanna; Valiunas, Virginijus; Kumari, Sindhu; Brink, Peter R.; Beyer, Eric C.

    2009-01-01

    Connexins (Cx) form gap junction channels mediating direct intercellular communication. To study the role of amino acids within the cytoplasmic loop, we produced a recombinant adenovirus containing Cx43 with a deletion of amino acids 130–136 (Cx43del130–136). Cx43del130–136 expressed alone in HeLa cells localized within the cytoplasm and did not allow transfer of ions, neurobiotin or Lucifer yellow. When co-expressed with wild type Cx43, Cx43del130–136 blocked electrical coupling and transfer of neurobiotin or Lucifer yellow. Cx43del130–136 and Cx43 co-localized by immunofluorescence and were co-purified from Triton X-100-solubilized cell extracts. Intercellular transfer mediated by Cx37 and Cx45 (but not Cx26 or Cx40) was inhibited when co-expressed with Cx43del130–136. Cx43del130–136 co-localized with Cx37, Cx40, or Cx45, but not Cx26. These data suggest that Cx43del130–136 produces connexin-specific inhibition of intercellular communication through formation of heteromeric connexons that are non-functional and/or retained in the cytoplasm. PMID:15979566

  11. Functional brain networks underlying latent inhibition of conditioned disgust in rats.

    PubMed

    Gasalla, Patricia; Begega, Azucena; Soto, Alberto; Dwyer, Dominic Michael; López, Matías

    2016-12-15

    The present experiment examined the neuronal networks involved in the latent inhibition of conditioned disgust by measuring brain oxidative metabolism. Rats were given nonreinforced intraoral (IO) exposure to saccharin (exposed groups) or water (non-exposed groups) followed by a conditioning trial in which the animals received an infusion of saccharin paired (or unpaired) with LiCl. On testing, taste reactivity responses displayed by the rats during the infusion of the saccharin were examined. Behavioral data showed that preexposure to saccharin attenuated the development of LiCl-induced conditioned disgust reactions, indicating that the effects of taste aversion on hedonic taste reactivity had been reduced. With respect to cumulative oxidative metabolic activity across the whole study period, the parabrachial nucleus was the only single region examined which showed differential activity between groups which received saccharin-LiCl pairings with and without prior non-reinforced saccharin exposure, suggesting a key role in the effects of latent inhibition of taste aversion learning. In addition, many functional connections between brain regions were revealed through correlational analysis of metabolic activity, in particular an accumbens-amygdala interaction that may be involved in both positive and negative hedonic responses.

  12. Function-blocking ERBB3 antibody inhibits the adaptive response to RAF inhibitor

    PubMed Central

    Kugel, Curtis H.; Hartsough, Edward J.; Davies, Michael A.; Setiady, Yulius Y.; Aplin, Andrew E.

    2014-01-01

    ERBB3/HER3 expression and signaling is upregulated in mutant BRAF melanoma as an adaptive, pro-survival response to FDA-approved RAF inhibitors. Since compensatory ERBB3 signaling counteracts the effects of RAF inhibitors, co-targeting ERBB3 may increase the efficacy of RAF inhibitors in mutant BRAF models of melanoma. Here we corroborate this concept by showing that the ERBB3 function-blocking monoclonal antibody huHER3-8 can inhibit neuregulin-1 (NRG1) activation of ERBB3 and downstream signaling in RAF-inhibited melanoma cells. Targeting mutant BRAF in combination with huHER3-8 decreased cell proliferation and increased cell death in vitro, and decreased tumor burden in vivo, compared to targeting either mutant BRAF or ERBB3 alone. Further, the likelihood of a durable tumor response in vivo was increased when huHER3-8 was combined with RAF inhibitor PLX4720. Together, these results offer a preclinical proof of concept for the application of ERBB3 neutralizing antibodies to enhance the efficacy of RAF inhibitors in melanoma to delay or prevent tumor re-growth. Insofar as ERBB3 is often upregulated in response to other kinase-targeted therapeutics, findings may have implications for other cancers as well. PMID:25035390

  13. Identification of small molecules that inhibit the histone chaperone Asf1 and its chromatin function

    PubMed Central

    Seol, Ja-Hwan; Song, Tae-Yang; Oh, Se Eun; Jo, Chanhee; Choi, Ahreum; Kim, Byungho; Park, Jinyoung; Hong, Suji; Song, Ilrang; Jung, Kwan Young; Yang, Jae-Hyun; Park, Hwangseo; Ahn, Jin-Hyun; Han, Jeung-Whan; Cho, Eun-Jung

    2015-01-01

    The eukaryotic genome is packed into chromatin, which is important for the genomic integrity and gene regulation. Chromatin structures are maintained through assembly and disassembly of nucleosomes catalyzed by histone chaperones. Asf1 (anti-silencing function 1) is a highly conserved histone chaperone that mediates histone transfer on/off DNA and promotes histone H3 lysine 56 acetylation at globular core domain of histone H3. To elucidate the role of Asf1 in the modulation of chromatin structure, we screened and identified small molecules that inhibit Asf1 and H3K56 acetylation without affecting other histone modifications. These pyrimidine-2,4,6-trione derivative molecules inhibited the nucleosome assembly mediated by Asf1 in vitro, and reduced the H3K56 acetylation in HeLa cells. Furthermore, production of HSV viral particles was reduced by these compounds. As Asf1 is implicated in genome integrity, cell proliferation, and cancer, current Asf1 inhibitor molecules may offer an opportunity for the therapeutic development for treatment of diseases. [BMB Reports 2015; 48(12): 685-690] PMID:26058396

  14. Overexpression of Arabidopsis phytochrome B inhibits phytochrome A function in the presence of sucrose.

    PubMed

    Short, T W

    1999-04-01

    Overexpression of phytochrome B (phyB) in Arabidopsis has previously been demonstrated to result in dominant negative interference of phytochrome A (phyA)-mediated hypocotyl growth inhibition in far-red (FR) light. This phenomenon has been examined further in this study and has been found to be dependent on the FR fluence rate and on the availability of metabolizable sugars in the growth medium. Poorly metabolized sugars capable of activating the putative hexokinase sensory function were not effective in eliciting the phytochrome interference response. Overexpressed phyB lacking the chromophore-binding site was also effective at inhibiting the phyA response, especially at higher fluence rates of FR. Overexpressed phyB produces the dominant negative phenotype without any apparent effect on phyA abundance or degradation. It is possible that phyA and phyB interact with a common reaction partner but that either the energy state of the cell or a separate sugar-signaling mechanism modulates the phytochrome-signaling interactions.

  15. Optimizing cost-efficiency in mean exposure assessment - cost functions reconsidered

    PubMed Central

    2011-01-01

    Background Reliable exposure data is a vital concern in medical epidemiology and intervention studies. The present study addresses the needs of the medical researcher to spend monetary resources devoted to exposure assessment with an optimal cost-efficiency, i.e. obtain the best possible statistical performance at a specified budget. A few previous studies have suggested mathematical optimization procedures based on very simple cost models; this study extends the methodology to cover even non-linear cost scenarios. Methods Statistical performance, i.e. efficiency, was assessed in terms of the precision of an exposure mean value, as determined in a hierarchical, nested measurement model with three stages. Total costs were assessed using a corresponding three-stage cost model, allowing costs at each stage to vary non-linearly with the number of measurements according to a power function. Using these models, procedures for identifying the optimally cost-efficient allocation of measurements under a constrained budget were developed, and applied on 225 scenarios combining different sizes of unit costs, cost function exponents, and exposure variance components. Results Explicit mathematical rules for identifying optimal allocation could be developed when cost functions were linear, while non-linear cost functions implied that parts of or the entire optimization procedure had to be carried out using numerical methods. For many of the 225 scenarios, the optimal strategy consisted in measuring on only one occasion from each of as many subjects as allowed by the budget. Significant deviations from this principle occurred if costs for recruiting subjects were large compared to costs for setting up measurement occasions, and, at the same time, the between-subjects to within-subject variance ratio was small. In these cases, non-linearities had a profound influence on the optimal allocation and on the eventual size of the exposure data set. Conclusions The analysis procedures

  16. Biological weighting function for the inhibition of phytoplankton photosynthesis by ultraviolet radiation

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Cullen, John J.; Neale, Patrick J.; Lesser, Michael P.

    1992-01-01

    Severe reduction of stratospheric ozone over Antarctica has focused increasing concern on the biological effects of ultraviolet-B (UVB) radiation (280 to 320 nanometers). Measurements of photosynthesis from an experimental system, in which phytoplankton are exposed to a broad range of irradiance treatments, are fit to an analytical model to provide the spectral biological weighting function that can be used to predict the short-term effects of ozone depletion on aquatic photosynthesis. Results show that UVA (320 to 400 nanometers) significantly inhibits the photosynthesis of a marine diatom and a dinoflagellate, and that the effects of UVB are even more severe. Application of the model suggests that the Antarctic ozone hole might reduce near-surface photosynthesis by 12 to 15 percent, but less so at depth. The experimental system makes possible routine estimation of spectral weightings for natural phytoplankton.

  17. Function and mechanism by which interferon regulatory factor-1 inhibits oncogenesis

    PubMed Central

    CHEN, FEI-FEI; JIANG, GUAN; XU, KERUI; ZHENG, JUN-NIAN

    2013-01-01

    The present review focuses on recent advances in the understanding of the molecular mechnisms by which interferon regulatory factor (IRF)-1 inhibits oncogenesis. IRF-1 is associated with regulation of interferon α and β transcription. In addition, numerous clinical studies have indicated that IRF-1 gene deletion or rearrangement correlates with development of specific forms of human cancer. IRF-1 has been revealed to exhibit marked functional diversity in the regulation of oncogenesis. IRF-1 activates a set of target genes associated with regulation of the cell cycle, apoptosis and the immune response. The role of IRF-1 in the regulation of various types of human tumor has important implications for understanding the susceptibility and progression of cancer. In addition, an improved understanding of the role of IRF-1 in the pathological processes that lead to human malignant diseases may aid development of novel therapeutic strategies. PMID:23420765

  18. Biological weighting function for the inhibition of phytoplankton photosynthesis by ultraviolet radiation

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Cullen, John J.; Neale, Patrick J.; Lesser, Michael P.

    1992-01-01

    Severe reduction of stratospheric ozone over Antarctica has focused increasing concern on the biological effects of ultraviolet-B (UVB) radiation (280 to 320 nanometers). Measurements of photosynthesis from an experimental system, in which phytoplankton are exposed to a broad range of irradiance treatments, are fit to an analytical model to provide the spectral biological weighting function that can be used to predict the short-term effects of ozone depletion on aquatic photosynthesis. Results show that UVA (320 to 400 nanometers) significantly inhibits the photosynthesis of a marine diatom and a dinoflagellate, and that the effects of UVB are even more severe. Application of the model suggests that the Antarctic ozone hole might reduce near-surface photosynthesis by 12 to 15 percent, but less so at depth. The experimental system makes possible routine estimation of spectral weightings for natural phytoplankton.

  19. Targeted inhibition of fascin function blocks tumour invasion and metastatic colonization.

    PubMed

    Huang, Fang-Ke; Han, Shaoqin; Xing, Bowen; Huang, Jianyun; Liu, Bingqian; Bordeleau, Francois; Reinhart-King, Cynthia A; Zhang, J Jillian; Huang, Xin-Yun

    2015-06-17

    One of the key steps during tumour metastasis is tumour cell migration and invasion, which require actin cytoskeletal reorganization. Among the critical actin cytoskeletal protrusion structures are the filopodia, which act like cell sensory organs to communicate with the extracellular microenvironment and participate in fundamental cell functions such as cell adhesion, spreading and migration in the three-dimensional environment. Fascin is the main actin-bundling protein in filopodia. Using high-throughput screening, here we identify and characterize small molecules that inhibit the actin-bundling activity of fascin. Focusing on one such inhibitor, we demonstrate that it specifically blocks filopodial formation, tumour cell migration and invasion in vitro, and metastasis in vivo. Hence, target-specific anti-fascin agents have a therapeutic potential for cancer treatment.

  20. A second-order unconstrained optimization method for canonical-ensemble density-functional methods.

    PubMed

    Nygaard, Cecilie R; Olsen, Jeppe

    2013-03-07

    A second order converging method of ensemble optimization (SOEO) in the framework of Kohn-Sham Density-Functional Theory is presented, where the energy is minimized with respect to an ensemble density matrix. It is general in the sense that the number of fractionally occupied orbitals is not predefined, but rather it is optimized by the algorithm. SOEO is a second order Newton-Raphson method of optimization, where both the form of the orbitals and the occupation numbers are optimized simultaneously. To keep the occupation numbers between zero and two, a set of occupation angles is defined, from which the occupation numbers are expressed as trigonometric functions. The total number of electrons is controlled by a built-in second order restriction of the Newton-Raphson equations, which can be deactivated in the case of a grand-canonical ensemble (where the total number of electrons is allowed to change). To test the optimization method, dissociation curves for diatomic carbon are produced using different functionals for the exchange-correlation energy. These curves show that SOEO favors symmetry broken pure-state solutions when using functionals with exact exchange such as Hartree-Fock and Becke three-parameter Lee-Yang-Parr. This is explained by an unphysical contribution to the exact exchange energy from interactions between fractional occupations. For functionals without exact exchange, such as local density approximation or Becke Lee-Yang-Parr, ensemble solutions are favored at interatomic distances larger than the equilibrium distance. Calculations on the chromium dimer are also discussed. They show that SOEO is able to converge to ensemble solutions for systems that are more complicated than diatomic carbon.

  1. Dietary flavanols and procyanidin oligomers from cocoa (Theobroma cacao) inhibit platelet function.

    PubMed

    Murphy, Karen J; Chronopoulos, Andriana K; Singh, Indu; Francis, Maureen A; Moriarty, Helen; Pike, Marilyn J; Turner, Alan H; Mann, Neil J; Sinclair, Andrew J

    2003-06-01

    Flavonoids may be partly responsible for some health benefits, including antiinflammatory action and a decreased tendency for the blood to clot. An acute dose of flavanols and oligomeric procyanidins from cocoa powder inhibits platelet activation and function over 6 h in humans. This study sought to evaluate whether 28 d of supplementation with cocoa flavanols and related procyanidin oligomers would modulate human platelet reactivity and primary hemostasis and reduce oxidative markers in vivo. Thirty-two healthy subjects were assigned to consume active (234 mg cocoa flavanols and procyanidins/d) or placebo (< or = 6 mg cocoa flavanols and procyanidins/d) tablets in a blinded parallel-designed study. Platelet function was determined by measuring platelet aggregation, ATP release, and expression of activation-dependent platelet antigens by using flow cytometry. Plasma was analyzed for oxidation markers and antioxidant status. Plasma concentrations of epicatechin and catechin in the active group increased by 81% and 28%, respectively, during the intervention period. The active group had significantly lower P selectin expression and significantly lower ADP-induced aggregation and collagen-induced aggregation than did the placebo group. Plasma ascorbic acid concentrations were significantly higher in the active than in the placebo group (P < 0.05), whereas plasma oxidation markers and antioxidant status did not change in either group. Cocoa flavanol and procyanidin supplementation for 28 d significantly increased plasma epicatechin and catechin concentrations and significantly decreased platelet function. These data support the results of acute studies that used higher doses of cocoa flavanols and procyanidins.

  2. Taurine increases testicular function in aged rats by inhibiting oxidative stress and apoptosis.

    PubMed

    Yang, Jiancheng; Zong, Xiaomeng; Wu, Gaofeng; Lin, Shumei; Feng, Ying; Hu, Jianmin

    2015-08-01

    In males, the decline of androgen synthesis, spermatogenesis and sexual function are the main phenotypes of aging, which may be attributed to testicular dysfunction. Taurine can act as an antioxidant, a testosterone secretion stimulator, a sperm membrane stabilizer and motility factor, and an anti-apoptotic agent. Recent observational studies suggested that taurine may play an important role in spermatogenesis, but to date whether taurine has anti-aging effects on testes remains unknown. We found that in aged rats testicular SDH and G6PDH activities, marker enzymes of testes, serum testosterone, testicular 3β-HSD and 17β-HSD mRNA expression levels were significantly increased by taurine treatment. Taurine administration also markedly raised the sperm count, viability and motility, decreased the sperm abnormality. Our data suggested that taurine can postpone testicular function deterioration in aged rats. Importantly, we observed obvious elevation of testicular antioxidant enzymes (SOD, GSH, GSH-Px) activities, and remarkable reduction of ROS and MDA by taurine administration, indicating taurine can decrease testicular oxidative stress and lipid peroxidation in aged rats. Finally, we found taurine effectively reduced testicular DNA fragmentation, increased testicular Bcl-2 protein expression, and decreased cytochrome c, Bax, Fas, FasL and caspase-3 expression, suggesting taurine can prohibit aged testicular apoptosis by mitochondrial dependent and independent signal pathway. In summary, our results indicated that taurine can suppress testicular function deterioration by increasing antioxidant ability and inhibiting apoptosis.

  3. Iron oxide nanoparticles induce Pseudomonas aeruginosa growth, induce biofilm formation, and inhibit antimicrobial peptide function.

    PubMed

    Borcherding, Jennifer; Baltrusaitis, Jonas; Chen, Haihan; Stebounova, Larissa; Wu, Chia-Ming; Rubasinghege, Gayan; Mudunkotuwa, Imali A; Caraballo, Juan Carlos; Zabner, Joseph; Grassian, Vicki H; Comellas, Alejandro P

    2014-04-01

    Given the increased use of iron-containing nanoparticles in a number of applications, it is important to understand any effects that iron-containing nanoparticles can have on the environment and human health. Since iron concentrations are extremely low in body fluids, there is potential that iron-containing nanoparticles may influence the ability of bacteria to scavenge iron for growth, affect virulence and inhibit antimicrobial peptide (AMP) function. In this study, Pseudomonas aeruginosa (PA01) and AMPs were exposed to iron oxide nanoparticles, hematite (α-Fe2O3), of different sizes ranging from 2 to 540 nm (2 ± 1, 43 ± 6, 85 ± 25 and 540 ± 90 nm) in diameter. Here we show that the greatest effect on bacterial growth, biofilm formation, and AMP function impairment is found when exposed to the smallest particles. These results are attributed in large part to enhanced dissolution observed for the smallest particles and an increase in the amount of bioavailable iron. Furthermore, AMP function can be additionally impaired by adsorption onto nanoparticle surfaces. In particular, lysozyme readily adsorbs onto the nanoparticle surface which can lead to loss of peptide activity. Thus, this current study shows that co-exposure of nanoparticles and known pathogens can impact host innate immunity. Therefore, it is important that future studies be designed to further understand these types of impacts.

  4. Glycerol Monolaurate (GML) inhibits human T cell signaling and function by disrupting lipid dynamics

    PubMed Central

    Zhang, Michael S.; Sandouk, Aline; Houtman, Jon C. D.

    2016-01-01

    Glycerol Monolaurate (GML) is a naturally occurring fatty acid widely utilized in food, cosmetics, and homeopathic supplements. GML is a potent antimicrobial agent that targets a range of bacteria, fungi, and enveloped viruses but select findings suggest that GML also has immunomodulatory functions. In this study, we have mechanistically examined if GML affects the signaling and functional output of human primary T cells. We found that GML potently altered order and disorder dynamics in the plasma membrane that resulted in reduced formation of LAT, PLC-γ, and AKT microclusters. Altered membrane events induced selective inhibition of TCR-induced phosphorylation of regulatory P85 subunit of PI3K and AKT as well as abrogated calcium influx. Ultimately, GML treatment potently reduced TCR-induced production of IL-2, IFN-γ, TNF-α, and IL-10. Our data reveal that the widely used anti-microbial agent GML also alters the lipid dynamics of human T cells, leading to their defective signaling and function. PMID:27456316

  5. Electroacupuncture improves cardiac function and remodeling by inhibition of sympathoexcitation in chronic heart failure rats.

    PubMed

    Ma, Luyao; Cui, Baiping; Shao, Yongfeng; Ni, Buqing; Zhang, Weiran; Luo, Yonggang; Zhang, Shijiang

    2014-05-15

    Chronic heart failure (CHF) is responsible for significant morbidity and mortality worldwide, mainly as a result of neurohumoral activation. Acupuncture has been used to treat a wide range of diseases and conditions. In this study, we investigated the effects of electroacupuncture (EA) on the sympathetic nerve activity, heart function, and remodeling in CHF rats after ligation of the left anterior descending coronary artery. CHF rats were randomly selected to EA and control groups for acute and chronic experiments. In the acute experiment, both the renal sympathetic nerve activity and cardiac sympathetic afferent reflex elicited by epicardial application of capsaicin were recorded. In the chronic experiment, we performed EA for 30 min once a day for 1 wk to test the long-term EA effects on heart function, remodeling, as well as infarct size in CHF rats. The results show EA significantly decreased the renal sympathetic nerve activity effectively, inhibited cardiac sympathetic afferent reflex, and lowered the blood pressure of CHF rats. Treating CHF rats with EA for 1 wk dramatically increased left ventricular ejection fraction and left ventricular fraction shortening, reversed the enlargement of left ventricular end-systolic dimension and left ventricular end-diastolic dimension, and shrunk the infarct size. In this experiment, we demonstrated EA attenuates sympathetic overactivity. Additionally, long-term EA improves cardiac function and remodeling and reduces infarct size in CHF rats. EA is a novel and potentially useful therapy for treating CHF.

  6. Game-theoretic methods for functional response and optimal foraging behavior.

    PubMed

    Cressman, Ross; Křivan, Vlastimil; Brown, Joel S; Garay, József

    2014-01-01

    We develop a decision tree based game-theoretical approach for constructing functional responses in multi-prey/multi-patch environments and for finding the corresponding optimal foraging strategies. Decision trees provide a way to describe details of predator foraging behavior, based on the predator's sequence of choices at different decision points, that facilitates writing down the corresponding functional response. It is shown that the optimal foraging behavior that maximizes predator energy intake per unit time is a Nash equilibrium of the underlying optimal foraging game. We apply these game-theoretical methods to three scenarios: the classical diet choice model with two types of prey and sequential prey encounters, the diet choice model with simultaneous prey encounters, and a model in which the predator requires a positive recognition time to identify the type of prey encountered. For both diet choice models, it is shown that every Nash equilibrium yields optimal foraging behavior. Although suboptimal Nash equilibrium outcomes may exist when prey recognition time is included, only optimal foraging behavior is stable under evolutionary learning processes.

  7. Game-Theoretic Methods for Functional Response and Optimal Foraging Behavior

    PubMed Central

    Cressman, Ross; Křivan, Vlastimil; Brown, Joel S.; Garay, József

    2014-01-01

    We develop a decision tree based game-theoretical approach for constructing functional responses in multi-prey/multi-patch environments and for finding the corresponding optimal foraging strategies. Decision trees provide a way to describe details of predator foraging behavior, based on the predator's sequence of choices at different decision points, that facilitates writing down the corresponding functional response. It is shown that the optimal foraging behavior that maximizes predator energy intake per unit time is a Nash equilibrium of the underlying optimal foraging game. We apply these game-theoretical methods to three scenarios: the classical diet choice model with two types of prey and sequential prey encounters, the diet choice model with simultaneous prey encounters, and a model in which the predator requires a positive recognition time to identify the type of prey encountered. For both diet choice models, it is shown that every Nash equilibrium yields optimal foraging behavior. Although suboptimal Nash equilibrium outcomes may exist when prey recognition time is included, only optimal foraging behavior is stable under evolutionary learning processes. PMID:24586390

  8. Automated ARGET ATRP Accelerates Catalyst Optimization for the Synthesis of Thiol-Functionalized Polymers

    PubMed Central

    Siegwart, Daniel J.; Leiendecker, Matthias; Langer, Robert; Anderson, Daniel G.

    2013-01-01

    Conventional synthesis of polymers by ATRP is relatively low throughput, involving iterative optimization of conditions in an inert atmosphere. Automated, high-throughput controlled radical polymerization was developed to accelerate catalyst optimization and production of disulfide-functionalized polymers without the need of an inert gas. Using ARGET ATRP, polymerization conditions were rapidly identified for eight different monomers, including the first ARGET ATRP of 2-(diethylamino)ethyl methacrylate and di(ethylene glycol) methyl ether methacrylate. In addition, butyl acrylate, oligo(ethylene glycol) methacrylate 300 and 475, 2-(dimethylamino)ethyl methacrylate, styrene, and methyl methacrylate were polymerized using bis(2-hydroxyethyl) disulfide bis(2-bromo-2-methylpropionate) as the initiator, tris(2-pyridylmethyl)amine as the ligand, and tin(II) 2-ethylhexanoate as the reducing agent. The catalyst and reducing agent concentration was optimized specifically for each monomer, and then a library of polymers was synthesized systematically using the optimized conditions. The disulfide-functionalized chains could be cleaved to two thiol-terminated chains upon exposure to dithiothreitol, which may have utility for the synthesis of polymer bioconjugates. Finally, we demonstrated that these new conditions translated perfectly to conventional batch polymerization. We believe the methods developed here may prove generally useful to accelerate the systematic optimization of a variety of chemical reactions and polymerizations. PMID:23599541

  9. Automated ARGET ATRP Accelerates Catalyst Optimization for the Synthesis of Thiol-Functionalized Polymers.

    PubMed

    Siegwart, Daniel J; Leiendecker, Matthias; Langer, Robert; Anderson, Daniel G

    2012-02-14

    Conventional synthesis of polymers by ATRP is relatively low throughput, involving iterative optimization of conditions in an inert atmosphere. Automated, high-throughput controlled radical polymerization was developed to accelerate catalyst optimization and production of disulfide-functionalized polymers without the need of an inert gas. Using ARGET ATRP, polymerization conditions were rapidly identified for eight different monomers, including the first ARGET ATRP of 2-(diethylamino)ethyl methacrylate and di(ethylene glycol) methyl ether methacrylate. In addition, butyl acrylate, oligo(ethylene glycol) methacrylate 300 and 475, 2-(dimethylamino)ethyl methacrylate, styrene, and methyl methacrylate were polymerized using bis(2-hydroxyethyl) disulfide bis(2-bromo-2-methylpropionate) as the initiator, tris(2-pyridylmethyl)amine as the ligand, and tin(II) 2-ethylhexanoate as the reducing agent. The catalyst and reducing agent concentration was optimized specifically for each monomer, and then a library of polymers was synthesized systematically using the optimized conditions. The disulfide-functionalized chains could be cleaved to two thiol-terminated chains upon exposure to dithiothreitol, which may have utility for the synthesis of polymer bioconjugates. Finally, we demonstrated that these new conditions translated perfectly to conventional batch polymerization. We believe the methods developed here may prove generally useful to accelerate the systematic optimization of a variety of chemical reactions and polymerizations.

  10. An Automated, Adaptive Framework for Optimizing Preprocessing Pipelines in Task-Based Functional MRI.

    PubMed

    Churchill, Nathan W; Spring, Robyn; Afshin-Pour, Babak; Dong, Fan; Strother, Stephen C

    2015-01-01

    BOLD fMRI is sensitive to blood-oxygenation changes correlated with brain function; however, it is limited by relatively weak signal and significant noise confounds. Many preprocessing algorithms have been developed to control noise and improve signal detection in fMRI. Although the chosen set of preprocessing and analysis steps (the "pipeline") significantly affects signal detection, pipelines are rarely quantitatively validated in the neuroimaging literature, due to complex preprocessing interactions. This paper outlines and validates an adaptive resampling framework for evaluating and optimizing preprocessing choices by optimizing data-driven metrics of task prediction and spatial reproducibility. Compared to standard "fixed" preprocessing pipelines, this optimization approach significantly improves independent validation measures of within-subject test-retest, and between-subject activation overlap, and behavioural prediction accuracy. We demonstrate that preprocessing choices function as implicit model regularizers, and that improvements due to pipeline optimization generalize across a range of simple to complex experimental tasks and analysis models. Results are shown for brief scanning sessions (<3 minutes each), demonstrating that with pipeline optimization, it is possible to obtain reliable results and brain-behaviour correlations in relatively small datasets.

  11. An Automated, Adaptive Framework for Optimizing Preprocessing Pipelines in Task-Based Functional MRI

    PubMed Central

    Churchill, Nathan W.; Spring, Robyn; Afshin-Pour, Babak; Dong, Fan; Strother, Stephen C.

    2015-01-01

    BOLD fMRI is sensitive to blood-oxygenation changes correlated with brain function; however, it is limited by relatively weak signal and significant noise confounds. Many preprocessing algorithms have been developed to control noise and improve signal detection in fMRI. Although the chosen set of preprocessing and analysis steps (the “pipeline”) significantly affects signal detection, pipelines are rarely quantitatively validated in the neuroimaging literature, due to complex preprocessing interactions. This paper outlines and validates an adaptive resampling framework for evaluating and optimizing preprocessing choices by optimizing data-driven metrics of task prediction and spatial reproducibility. Compared to standard “fixed” preprocessing pipelines, this optimization approach significantly improves independent validation measures of within-subject test-retest, and between-subject activation overlap, and behavioural prediction accuracy. We demonstrate that preprocessing choices function as implicit model regularizers, and that improvements due to pipeline optimization generalize across a range of simple to complex experimental tasks and analysis models. Results are shown for brief scanning sessions (<3 minutes each), demonstrating that with pipeline optimization, it is possible to obtain reliable results and brain-behaviour correlations in relatively small datasets. PMID:26161667

  12. A Hybrid PSO-BFGS Strategy for Global Optimization of Multimodal Functions.

    PubMed

    Shutao Li; Mingkui Tan; Tsang, I W; Kwok, James Tin-Yau

    2011-08-01

    Particle swarm optimizer (PSO) is a powerful optimization algorithm that has been applied to a variety of problems. It can, however, suffer from premature convergence and slow convergence rate. Motivated by these two problems, a hybrid global optimization strategy combining PSOs with a modified Broyden-Fletcher-Goldfarb-Shanno (BFGS) method is presented in this paper. The modified BFGS method is integrated into the context of the PSOs to improve the particles' local search ability. In addition, in conjunction with the territory technique, a reposition technique to maintain the diversity of particles is proposed to improve the global search ability of PSOs. One advantage of the hybrid strategy is that it can effectively find multiple local solutions or global solutions to the multimodal functions in a box-constrained space. Based on these local solutions, a reconstruction technique can be adopted to further estimate better solutions. The proposed method is compared with several recently developed optimization algorithms on a set of 20 standard benchmark problems. Experimental results demonstrate that the proposed approach can obtain high-quality solutions on multimodal function optimization problems.

  13. Determination of an optimal unit pulse response function using real-coded genetic algorithm

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Jain, Ashu; Srinivasalu, Sanaga; Bhattacharjya, Rajib Kumar

    2005-03-01

    This paper presents the results of employing a real-coded genetic algorithm (GA) to the problem of determining the optimal unit pulse response function (UPRF) using the historical data from watersheds. The existing linear programming (LP) formulation has been modified, and a new problem formulation is proposed. The proposed problem formulation consists of fewer decision variables, only one constraint, and a non-linear objective function. The proposed problem formulation can be used to determine an optimal UPRF of a watershed from a single storm or a composite UPRF from multiple storms. The proposed problem formulation coupled with the solution technique of real-coded GA is tested using the effective rainfall and runoff data derived from two different watersheds and the results are compared with those reported earlier by others using LP methods. The model performance is evaluated using a wide range of standard statistical measures. The results obtained in this study indicate that the real-coded GA can be a suitable alternative to the problem of determining an optimal UPRF from a watershed. The proposed problem formulation when solved using real-coded GA resulted in smoother optimal UPRF without the need of additional constraints. The proposed problem formulation can be particularly useful in determining the optimal composite UPRF from multiple storms in large watersheds having large time bases due to its limited number of decision variables and constraints.

  14. Probability distribution functions for unit hydrographs with optimization using genetic algorithm

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ghorbani, Mohammad Ali; Singh, Vijay P.; Sivakumar, Bellie; H. Kashani, Mahsa; Atre, Atul Arvind; Asadi, Hakimeh

    2017-05-01

    A unit hydrograph (UH) of a watershed may be viewed as the unit pulse response function of a linear system. In recent years, the use of probability distribution functions (pdfs) for determining a UH has received much attention. In this study, a nonlinear optimization model is developed to transmute a UH into a pdf. The potential of six popular pdfs, namely two-parameter gamma, two-parameter Gumbel, two-parameter log-normal, two-parameter normal, three-parameter Pearson distribution, and two-parameter Weibull is tested on data from the Lighvan catchment in Iran. The probability distribution parameters are determined using the nonlinear least squares optimization method in two ways: (1) optimization by programming in Mathematica; and (2) optimization by applying genetic algorithm. The results are compared with those obtained by the traditional linear least squares method. The results show comparable capability and performance of two nonlinear methods. The gamma and Pearson distributions are the most successful models in preserving the rising and recession limbs of the unit hydographs. The log-normal distribution has a high ability in predicting both the peak flow and time to peak of the unit hydrograph. The nonlinear optimization method does not outperform the linear least squares method in determining the UH (especially for excess rainfall of one pulse), but is comparable.

  15. The CCR2 3'UTR functions as a competing endogenous RNA to inhibit breast cancer metastasis.

    PubMed

    Hu, Jinhang; Li, Xiaoman; Guo, Xinwei; Guo, Qianqian; Xiang, Chenxi; Zhang, Zhiting; Xing, Yingying; Xi, Tao; Zheng, Lufeng

    2017-10-01

    Diverse RNA transcripts acting as competing endogenous RNAs (ceRNAs) can co-regulate each other's expression by competing for shared microRNAs. CCR2 protein, the receptor for CCL2, is implicated in cancer progression. However, we found that a higher CCR2 mRNA level is remarkably associated with prolonged survival of breast cancer patients. These conflicting results prompted us to study the non-coding function of CCR2 mRNA. We found that the CCR2 3' untranslated region (UTR) inhibited MDA-MB-231 and MCF-7 cell metastasis by repressing epithelial-mesenchymal transition (EMT) in vitro, and suppressed breast cancer metastasis in vivo Mechanistically, the CCR2 3'UTR modulated the expression of the RhoGAP protein STARD13 via acting as a STARD13 ceRNA in a microRNA-dependent and protein coding-independent manner. The CCR2 3'UTR blocked the activation of RhoA-ROCK1 pathway, which is the downstream effector of STARD13, and thus decreased the phosphorylation level of myosin light chain 2 (MLC2) and formation of F-actin. Additionally, the function of the CCR2 3'UTR was dependent on STARD13 expression. In conclusion, our results confirmed that the CCR2 3'UTR acts as a metastasis suppressor by acting as a ceRNA for STARD13 and thus inhibiting RhoA-ROCK1-MLC-F-actin pathway in breast cancer cells.This article has an associated First Person interview with the first author of the paper. © 2017. Published by The Company of Biologists Ltd.

  16. Effect of mitochondrial uncoupling and glycolysis inhibition on ram sperm functionality.

    PubMed

    Losano, Jda; Angrimani, Dsr; Dalmazzo, A; Rui, B R; Brito, M M; Mendes, C M; Kawai, Gkv; Vannucchi, C I; Assumpção, Meoa; Barnabe, V H; Nichi, M

    2017-04-01

    Studies have demonstrated the importance of mitochondria to sperm functionality, as the main source of ATP for cellular homoeostasis and motility. However, the role of mitochondria on sperm metabolism is still controversial. Studies indicate that, for some species, glycolysis may be the main mechanism for sperm energy production. For ram sperm, such pathway is not clear. Thus, we evaluated ram sperm in response to mitochondrial uncoupling and glycolysis inhibition aiming to assess the importance of each pathway for sperm functionality. Statistical analysis was performed by the SAS System for Windows, using the General Linear Model Procedure. Data were tested for residue normality and variance homogeneity. A p < .05 was considered significant. Groups treated with the mitochondrial uncoupler Carbonyl cyanide 3 chlorophenylhydrazone (CCCP) showed a decrease in the percentage of cells with low mitochondrial activity and high mitochondrial membrane potential. We also observed that the highest CCCP concentration promotes a decrease in sperm susceptibility to lipid peroxidation. Regardless the lack of effect of CCCP on total motility, this substance induced significant alterations on sperm kinetics. Besides the interference of CCCP on spermatic movement patterns, it was also possible to observe such an effect in samples treated with the inhibitor of glycolysis (2-deoxy-d-glucose, DOG). Furthermore, treatment with DOG also led to a dose-dependent increase in sperm susceptibility to lipid peroxidation. Based on our results, we suggest that the glycolysis appears to be as important as oxidative phosphorylation for ovine sperm kinetics as this mechanism is capable of maintaining full motility when most of the cells have a low mitochondrial membrane potential. Furthermore, we found that changes in the glycolytic pathway trough glycolysis inhibition are likely involved in mitochondrial dysfunction and sperm oxidative unbalance. © 2017 Blackwell Verlag GmbH.

  17. Inhibition of human peripheral blood lymphocyte function by protoporphyrin and longwave ultraviolet light

    SciTech Connect

    Barrett, K.E.; Yen, A.; Montisano, D.; Gigli, I.; Bigby, T.D.

    1994-10-01

    Modulation of immunologic effector cells by exogenous photoactive substances has been advanced as an underlying mechanism for the efficacy of various photochemotherapeutic regimens. It is also possible that endogenous photosensitizers, such as protoporphyrin, could similarly modify the function of immune cell types. The authors examined the effects of protoporphyrin plus longwave UV light on the ability of human PBL to proliferate in response to mitogens. Noncytotoxic dosages of protoporphyrin plus UV light suppressed PHA-stimulated proliferation of both PBMC and enriched T cells. CD8{sup +} cells were more sensitive to this inhibitory effect than CD4{sup +} cells. The inhibitory effect was also observed when proliferation was induced by the combination of a phorbol ester and ionomycin. Inhibition of PBMC proliferation was associated with inhibition of IL-2 secretion but proliferation was not restored with exogenous IL-2. Instead, the effect of protoporphyrin plus UV light may be on IL-2R. Cells treated with protoporphyrin and UV light did not display the increase in CD25 and {beta}-chain of the IL-2R induced by PHA in control cells. In contrast to the effects of protoporphyrin and UV light on IL-2 and IL-2R {alpha}-chain protein expression, the accumulation of mRNA for these proteins induced by PHA was unaffected. None of the effects of protoporphyrin plus UV light on lymphocytes were observed in control experiments where cells were treated with either protoporphyrin or UV light alone. They conclude that biologically relevant dosages of protoporphyrin and UV light modify the function of circulating lymphocytes. 26 refs., 8 figs., 1 tab.

  18. Inhibition of NF-kappaB with Dehydroxymethylepoxyquinomicin modifies the function of human peritoneal mesothelial cells

    PubMed Central

    Sosińska, Patrycja; Baum, Ewa; Maćkowiak, Beata; Staniszewski, Ryszard; Jasinski, Tomasz; Umezawa, Kazuo; Bręborowicz, Andrzej

    2016-01-01

    Peritoneal mesothelial cells exposed to bioincompatible dialysis fluids contribute to damage of the peritoneum during chronic dialysis. Inflammatory response triggered in the mesothelium leading to neovascularization and fibrosis plays an important role in that process. We studied the effects of Dehydroxymethyepoxyquinmicin (DHMEQ)-an NF-κB inhibitor on function of human peritoneal mesothelial cells (HPMC) in in vitro culture. DHMEQ studied in concentrations of 1-10 µg/ml was not toxic to HPMC. Synthesis of IL-6, MCP-1 and hyaluronan in unstimulated and stimulated with interleukin-1 (100 pg/ml) HPMC was inhibited in the presence of DHMEQ and the effect was proportional to the dose of the drug. DHMEQ (10 µg/ml) reduced in unstimulated HPMC synthesis of IL-6 (-55%), MCP-1 (-58%) and hyaluronan (-41%). Respective values for stimulated HMPC were: -63% for IL-6, -57% for MCP-1 and -67% for hyaluronan. The observed effects were due to the suppression of the expression of genes responsible for the synthesis of these molecules. DHMEQ modified the effects of the effluent dialysates from CAPD patients on the function of HMPC. Dialysate induced accelerated growth of these cells, and synthesis of collagen was inhibited in the presence of DHMEQ 10 µg/ml, by 69% and 40%, respectively. The results of our study show that DHMEQ effectively reduces inflammatory response in HMPC and prevents excessive dialysate induced proliferation and collagen synthesis in these cells. All of these effects may be beneficial during chronic peritoneal dialysis and prevents progressive dialysis-induced damage to the peritoneum. PMID:28078047

  19. 25-Hydroxycholesterol impairs endothelial function and vasodilation by uncoupling and inhibiting endothelial nitric oxide synthase.

    PubMed

    Ou, Zhi-Jun; Chen, Jing; Dai, Wei-Ping; Liu, Xiang; Yang, Yin-Ke; Li, Yan; Lin, Ze-Bang; Wang, Tian-Tian; Wu, Ying-Ying; Su, Dan-Hong; Cheng, Tian-Pu; Wang, Zhi-Ping; Tao, Jun; Ou, Jing-Song

    2016-10-01

    Endothelial dysfunction is a key early step in atherosclerosis. 25-Hydroxycholesterol (25-OHC) is found in atherosclerotic lesions. However, whether 25-OHC promotes atherosclerosis is unclear. Here, we hypothesized that 25-OHC, a proinflammatory lipid, can impair endothelial function, which may play an important role in atherosclerosis. Bovine aortic endothelial cells were incubated with 25-OHC. Endothelial cell proliferation, migration, and tube formation were measured. Nitric oxide (NO) production and superoxide anion generation were determined. The expression and phosphorylation of endothelial NO synthase (eNOS) and Akt as well as the association of eNOS and heat shock protein (HSP)90 were detected by immunoblot analysis and immunoprecipitation. Endothelial cell apoptosis was monitored by TUNEL staining and caspase-3 activity, and expression of Bcl-2, Bax, cleaved caspase-9, and cleaved caspase-3 were detected by immunoblot analysis. Finally, aortic rings from Sprague-Dawley rats were isolated and treated with 25-OHC, and endothelium-dependent vasodilation was evaluated. 25-OHC significantly inhibited endothelial cell proliferation, migration, and tube formation. 25-OHC markedly decreased NO production and increased superoxide anion generation. 25-OHC reduced the phosphorylation of Akt and eNOS and the association of eNOS and HSP90. 25-OHC also enhanced endothelial cell apoptosis by decreasing Bcl-2 expression and increasing cleaved caspase-9 and cleaved caspase-3 expressions as well as caspase-3 activity. 25-OHC impaired endothelium-dependent vasodilation. These data demonstrated that 25-OHC could impair endothelial function by uncoupling and inhibiting eNOS activity as well as by inducing endothelial cell apoptosis. Our findings indicate that 25-OHC may play an important role in regulating atherosclerosis. Copyright © 2016 the American Physiological Society.

  20. Inhibition of matrix metalloproteinase-2 improves endothelial function and prevents hypertension in insulin-resistant rats

    PubMed Central

    Nagareddy, PR; Rajput, PS; Vasudevan, H; McClure, B; Kumar, U; MacLeod, KM; McNeill, JH

    2012-01-01

    BACKGROUND AND PURPOSE Insulin resistance is often found to be associated with high blood pressure. We propose that in insulin-resistant hypertension, endothelial dysfunction is the consequence of increased activity of vascular MMP-2. As MMP-2 proteolytically cleaves a number of extracellular matrix proteins, we hypothesized that MMP-2 impairs endothelial function by proteolytic degradation of endothelial NOS (eNOS) or its cofactor, heat shock protein 90 (HSP90). EXPERIMENTAL APPROACH We tested our hypothesis in bovine coronary artery endothelial cells and fructose-fed hypertensive rats (FHR), a model of acquired systolic hypertension and insulin resistance. KEY RESULTS Treatment of FHRs with the MMP inhibitor doxycycline, preserved endothelial function as well as prevented the development of hypertension, suggesting that MMPs impair endothelial function. Furthermore, incubating endothelial cells in vitro with a recombinant MMP-2 decreased NO production in a dose-dependent manner. Using substrate cleavage assays and immunofluorescence microscopy studies, we found that MMP-2 not only cleaves and degrades HSP90, an eNOS cofactor but also co-localizes with both eNOS and HSP90 in endothelial cells, suggesting that MMPs functionally interact with the eNOS system. Treatment of FHRs with doxycycline attenuated the decrease in eNOS and HSP90 expression but did not improve insulin sensitivity. CONCLUSIONS AND IMPLICATIONS Our data suggest that increased activity of MMP-2 in FHRs impairs endothelial function and promotes hypertension. Inhibition of MMP-2 could be a potential therapeutic strategy for the management of hypertension. PMID:21740410

  1. Tai Chi Chuan optimizes the functional organization of the intrinsic human brain architecture in older adults

    PubMed Central

    Wei, Gao-Xia; Dong, Hao-Ming; Yang, Zhi; Luo, Jing; Zuo, Xi-Nian

    2014-01-01

    Whether Tai Chi Chuan (TCC) can influence the intrinsic functional architecture of the human brain remains unclear. To examine TCC-associated changes in functional connectomes, resting-state functional magnetic resonance images were acquired from 40 older individuals including 22 experienced TCC practitioners (experts) and 18 demographically matched TCC-naïve healthy controls, and their local functional homogeneities across the cortical mantle were compared. Compared to the controls, the TCC experts had significantly greater and more experience-dependent functional homogeneity in the right post-central gyrus (PosCG) and less functional homogeneity in the left anterior cingulate cortex (ACC) and the right dorsal lateral prefrontal cortex. Increased functional homogeneity in the PosCG was correlated with TCC experience. Intriguingly, decreases in functional homogeneity (improved functional specialization) in the left ACC and increases in functional homogeneity (improved functional integration) in the right PosCG both predicted performance gains on attention network behavior tests. These findings provide evidence for the functional plasticity of the brain’s intrinsic architecture toward optimizing locally functional organization, with great implications for understanding the effects of TCC on cognition, behavior and health in aging population. PMID:24860494

  2. Inhibition of Human and Rat Sucrase and Maltase Activities To Assess Antiglycemic Potential: Optimization of the Assay Using Acarbose and Polyphenols.

    PubMed

    Pyner, Alison; Nyambe-Silavwe, Hilda; Williamson, Gary

    2017-09-26

    We optimized the assays used to measure inhibition of rat and human α-glucosidases (sucrase and maltase activities), intestinal enzymes which catalyze the final steps of carbohydrate digestion. Cell-free extracts from fully differentiated intestinal Caco-2/TC7 monolayers were shown to be a suitable source of sucrase-isomaltase, with the same sequence as human small intestine, and were compared to a rat intestinal extract. The kinetic conditions of the assay were optimized, including comparison of enzymatic and chromatographic methods to detect the monosaccharide products. Human sucrase activity was more susceptible than the rat enzyme to inhibition by acarbose (IC50 (concentration required for 50% inhibition) = 2.5 ± 0.5 and 12.3 ± 0.6 μM, respectively), by a polyphenol-rich green tea extract, and by pure (-)-epigallocatechin gallate (EGCG) (IC50 = 657 ± 150 and 950 ± 86 μM respectively). In contrast, the reverse was observed when assessing maltase activity (e.g. IC50 = 677 ± 241 and 14.0 ± 2.0 μM for human and rat maltase, respectively). 5-Caffeoylquinic acid did not significantly inhibit maltase and was only a very weak inhibitor of sucrase. The data show that for sucrase and maltase activities, inhibition patterns of rat and human enzymes are generally qualitatively similar but can be quantitatively different.

  3. Functional Recovery in Major Depressive Disorder: Focus on Early Optimized Treatment.

    PubMed

    Habert, Jeffrey; Katzman, Martin A; Oluboka, Oloruntoba J; McIntyre, Roger S; McIntosh, Diane; MacQueen, Glenda M; Khullar, Atul; Milev, Roumen V; Kjernisted, Kevin D; Chokka, Pratap R; Kennedy, Sidney H

    2016-09-01

    This article presents the case that a more rapid, individualized approach to treating major depressive disorder (MDD) may increase the likelihood of achieving full symptomatic and functional recovery for individual patients and that studies show it is possible to make earlier decisions about appropriateness of treatment in order to rapidly optimize that treatment. A PubMed search was conducted using terms including major depressive disorder, early improvement, predictor, duration of untreated illness, and function. English-language articles published before September 2015 were included. Additional studies were found within identified research articles and reviews. Thirty antidepressant studies reporting predictor criteria and outcome measures are included in this review. Studies were reviewed to extract definitions of predictors, outcome measures, and results of the predictor analysis. Results were summarized separately for studies reporting effects of early improvement, baseline characteristics, and duration of untreated depression. Shorter duration of the current depressive episode and duration of untreated depression are associated with better symptomatic and functional outcomes in MDD. Early improvement of depressive symptoms predicts positive symptomatic outcomes (response and remission), and early functional improvement predicts an increased likelihood of functional remission. The approach to treatment of depression that exhibits the greatest potential for achieving full symptomatic and functional recovery is early optimized treatment: early diagnosis followed by rapid individualized treatment. Monitoring symptoms and function early in treatment is crucial to ensuring that patients do not remain on ineffective or poorly tolerated treatment, which may delay recovery and heighten the risk of residual functional deficits.

  4. Expanded explorations into the optimization of an energy function for protein design.

    PubMed

    Huang, Yao-Ming; Bystroff, Christopher

    2013-01-01

    Nature possesses a secret formula for the energy as a function of the structure of a protein. In protein design, approximations are made to both the structural representation of the molecule and to the form of the energy equation, such that the existence of a general energy function for proteins is by no means guaranteed. Here, we present new insights toward the application of machine learning to the problem of finding a general energy function for protein design. Machine learning requires the definition of an objective function, which carries with it the implied definition of success in protein design. We explored four functions, consisting of two functional forms, each with two criteria for success. Optimization was carried out by a Monte Carlo search through the space of all variable parameters. Cross-validation of the optimized energy function against a test set gave significantly different results depending on the choice of objective function, pointing to relative correctness of the built-in assumptions. Novel energy cross terms correct for the observed nonadditivity of energy terms and an imbalance in the distribution of predicted amino acids. This paper expands on the work presented at the 2012 ACM-BCB.

  5. Expanded explorations into the optimization of an energy function for protein design

    PubMed Central

    Huang, Yao-ming; Bystroff, Christopher

    2014-01-01

    Nature possesses a secret formula for the energy as a function of the structure of a protein. In protein design, approximations are made to both the structural representation of the molecule and to the form of the energy equation, such that the existence of a general energy function for proteins is by no means guaranteed. Here we present new insights towards the application of machine learning to the problem of finding a general energy function for protein design. Machine learning requires the definition of an objective function, which carries with it the implied definition of success in protein design. We explored four functions, consisting of two functional forms, each with two criteria for success. Optimization was carried out by a Monte Carlo search through the space of all variable parameters. Cross-validation of the optimized energy function against a test set gave significantly different results depending on the choice of objective function, pointing to relative correctness of the built-in assumptions. Novel energy cross-terms correct for the observed non-additivity of energy terms and an imbalance in the distribution of predicted amino acids. This paper expands on the work presented at ACM-BCB, Orlando FL , October 2012. PMID:24384706

  6. Maximum likelihood optimal and robust Support Vector Regression with lncosh loss function.

    PubMed

    Karal, Omer

    2017-10-01

    In this paper, a novel and continuously differentiable convex loss function based on natural logarithm of hyperbolic cosine function, namely lncosh loss, is introduced to obtain Support Vector Regression (SVR) models which are optimal in the maximum likelihood sense for the hyper-secant error distributions. Most of the current regression models assume that the distribution of error is Gaussian, which corresponds to the squared loss function and has helpful analytical properties such as easy computation and analysis. However, in many real world applications, most observations are subject to unknown noise distributions, so the Gaussian distribution may not be a useful choice. The developed SVR model with the parameterized lncosh loss provides a possibility of learning a loss function leading to a regression model which is maximum likelihood optimal for a specific input-output data. The SVR models obtained with different parameter choices of lncosh loss with ε-insensitiveness feature, possess most of the desirable characteristics of well-known loss functions such as Vapnik's loss, the Squared loss, and Huber's loss function as special cases. In other words, it is observed in the extensive simulations that the mentioned lncosh loss function is entirely controlled by a single adjustable λ parameter and as a result, it allows switching between different losses depending on the choice of λ. The effectiveness and feasibility of lncosh loss function are validated through a number of synthetic and real world benchmark data sets for various types of additive noise distributions. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  7. Rotational g Tensors Calculated Using Hybrid Exchange-Correlation Functionals with the Optimized Effective Potential Approach.

    PubMed

    Teale, Andrew M; Helgaker, Trygve; Tozer, David J

    2006-05-01

    The calculation of rotational g tensors using density functional theory (DFT) with hybrid exchange-correlation functionals is considered. A total of 143 rotational g tensor elements in 58 molecules (67 isotopic combinations) are calculated using three standard hybrid functionals. Tensor elements determined using an uncoupled approach with orbitals and eigenvalues calculated from the multiplicative optimized effective potential (OEP) constitute a significant improvement over those determined in the conventional coupled manner with a nonmultiplicative exchange-correlation operator. Relative to experimental results, mean absolute errors are reduced by a factor of 2; mean errors and standard deviations are reduced by more than a factor of 3. The results are also an improvement over those determined using a generalized gradient-approximation functional optimized for magnetic response properties. The influence of orbital exchange is investigated for a representative subset of molecules, yielding an optimal amount near 0.3. Rotational g tensors are also determined from coupled-cluster electron densities using a combined DFT/wave-function approach. Being substantially more expensive, they do not offer a notable improvement on the pure DFT values from OEP-based hybrid calculations.

  8. Optimally Functionalized Adhesion for Contact Transfer Printing of Plasmonic Nanostructures on Flexible Substrate.

    PubMed

    Lee, Jihye; Lee, Jun-Young; Yeo, Jong-Souk

    2017-02-01

    This paper demonstrates a facile method to achieve high yield and uniform fabrication for the transfer printing of nanoplasmonic structures on a flexible substrate by providing novel understanding on adhesion layers. The mercapto alkyl carboxylic acids and the alkyl dithiols are used as functionalized adhesion layers and further optimized by controlling the terminal group as well as the length and composition of the functionalization on flat and nanostructured gold surfaces. Our approach of optimized adhesion has been successfully implemented to the transfer printing of functionalized gold nanostructure arrays, thus producing much higher yield of 97.6% and uniform fabrication of nanostructures on a flexible substrate and enabling applications such as flexible nanoplasmonic devices and biosensing platforms.

  9. Optimal transportation network with concave cost functions: loop analysis and algorithms.

    PubMed

    Shao, Zhen; Zhou, Haijun

    2007-06-01

    Transportation networks play a vital role in modern societies. Structural optimization of a transportation system under a given set of constraints is an issue of great practical importance. For a general transportation system whose total cost C is determined by C = Sigma(ioptimal network topology is a tree if C(ij) proportional |I(ij)|(gamma) with 0 < gamma < 1. The same conclusion also holds in the more general case where all the flow costs are strictly concave functions of the flow I(ij). To further understand the qualitative difference between systems with concave and convex cost functions, a loop analysis of transportation cost is performed in the present paper, and an alternative mathematical proof of the optimality of tree-formed networks is given. The simple intuitive picture of this proof then leads to an efficient global algorithm for the searching of optimal structures for a given transportation system with concave cost functions.

  10. Optimizing rTMS treatment of a balance disorder with EEG neural synchrony and functional connectivity.

    PubMed

    Guofa Shou; Han Yuan; Urbano, Diamond; Yoon-Hee Cha; Lei Ding

    2016-08-01

    Repetitive transcranial magnetic stimulation (rTMS) has been increasingly used for its potential treatment effects across diverse mental disorders. However, the treatment effect is elusive and the rate of positive responders is not high, which make it in great demand of optimizing rTMS protocols to improve the treatment effects and the rate. In this regard, neural activity guided optimization has indicated great potential in several neuroimaging studies. In this paper, we present our ongoing work on optimizing rTMS treatment of a balance disorder, i.e., Mal de Debarquement syndrome (MdDS), by investigating treatment-related EEG neural synchrony and functional connectivity changes. Motivated by our previous pilot study of rTMS on MdDS, we firstly applied a bilateral dorsolateral prefrontal cortex (DLPFC) rTMS protocol to evaluate its efficacy and the treatment-related neural responses via an independent component analysis (ICA)-based framework. Thereafter, guided by identified EEG neural synchrony and functional connectivity patterns, we proposed three potential stimulation targets covering posterior nodes of the default mode network (DMN), and implemented a new rTMS protocol by stimulating the target with the great symptoms relief. The preliminary clinical response data has indicated that the new rTMS protocol significantly increase the rate of positive responders and the degrees of the improvement. The present study demonstrates that it is promising to integrate EEG neural synchrony and functional connectivity into the optimization of rTMS protocols for different mental disorders.

  11. A Sequential Optimization Sampling Method for Metamodels with Radial Basis Functions

    PubMed Central

    Pan, Guang; Ye, Pengcheng; Yang, Zhidong

    2014-01-01

    Metamodels have been widely used in engineering design to facilitate analysis and optimization of complex systems that involve computationally expensive simulation programs. The accuracy of metamodels is strongly affected by the sampling methods. In this paper, a new sequential optimization sampling method is proposed. Based on the new sampling method, metamodels can be constructed repeatedly through the addition of sampling points, namely, extrema points of metamodels and minimum points of density function. Afterwards, the more accurate metamodels would be constructed by the procedure above. The validity and effectiveness of proposed sampling method are examined by studying typical numerical examples. PMID:25133206

  12. Applications of a quadratic extended interior penalty function for structural optimization

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Haftka, R. T.; Starnes, J. H., Jr.

    1975-01-01

    A quadratic extended interior penalty function formulation especially well suited for second-order unconstrained optimization procedures is presented. Analytical derivatives of constraints and an approximate analysis technique are used. Minimum-mass design results are presented which indicate that the combination of these procedures can help make mathematical programming a useful optimization tool for large-order structural design problems with a large number of design variables and multiple constraints. Examples include statically loaded high- and low-aspect-ratio wings simultaneously subjected to stress, displacement, minimum gage and, in some cases, maximum strain constraints.

  13. Optimization of global model composed of radial basis functions using the term-ranking approach

    SciTech Connect

    Cai, Peng; Tao, Chao Liu, Xiao-Jun

    2014-03-15

    A term-ranking method is put forward to optimize the global model composed of radial basis functions to improve the predictability of the model. The effectiveness of the proposed method is examined by numerical simulation and experimental data. Numerical simulations indicate that this method can significantly lengthen the prediction time and decrease the Bayesian information criterion of the model. The application to real voice signal shows that the optimized global model can capture more predictable component in chaos-like voice data and simultaneously reduce the predictable component (periodic pitch) in the residual signal.

  14. An improved flower pollination algorithm with chaos theory for function optimization

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pauline, Ong; Meng, Ong Kok; Kiong, Sia Chee

    2017-08-01

    Flower pollination algorithm (FPA) is one of the newly developed bio-inspired optimization approaches, inspiring by the flower pollination process. In this study, an improved FPA was developed, in which the utilization of the chaos theory was performed, such that the variety of the initial population was enhanced. Ten different chaotic maps were considered, and various benchmark functions were employed to validate the performance of the chaotic FPA. Comparison results indicated that integration of the FPA with chaos theory led to improvement in terms of convergence characteristic, where the Circle chaotic map gave the best optimization performance.

  15. Optimal contrast function in the unbalanced fiber optic Michelson interferometer for dislocation sensor

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Szustakowski, Mieczyslaw; Palka, Norbert; Ciurapinski, Wieslaw M.

    2004-09-01

    Theoretical description of a contrast in an unbalanced fiber optic Michelson's interferometer with a multimode laser was shown. Periodic contrast oscillations, which depend on a laser spectrum, occur if a measuring arm of the interferometer is elongated. Required characteristic features of the contrast for an elongation sensor were determined. Influences of laser spectrum parameters (wavelength, halfwidth and mode spacing) as well as laser mode amplitudes on the contrast were simulated. Optimal spectrum for the dislocation sensor was determined theoretically. A laser which parameters fulfilled the requirements was found and its spectrum was measured. The measured contrast function was very similar to the optimal theoretical plot what proves correctness of the calculations.

  16. Optimization of global model composed of radial basis functions using the term-ranking approach

    SciTech Connect

    Cai, Peng; Tao, Chao Liu, Xiao-Jun

    2014-03-15

    A term-ranking method is put forward to optimize the global model composed of radial basis functions to improve the predictability of the model. The effectiveness of the proposed method is examined by numerical simulation and experimental data. Numerical simulations indicate that this method can significantly lengthen the prediction time and decrease the Bayesian information criterion of the model. The application to real voice signal shows that the optimized global model can capture more predictable component in chaos-like voice data and simultaneously reduce the predictable component (periodic pitch) in the residual signal.

  17. Parameter optimization by using differential elimination: a general approach for introducing constraints into objective functions.

    PubMed

    Nakatsui, Masahiko; Horimoto, Katsuhisa; Okamoto, Masahiro; Tokumoto, Yasuhito; Miyake, Jun

    2010-09-13

    The investigation of network dynamics is a major issue in systems and synthetic biology. One of the essential steps in a dynamics investigation is the parameter estimation in the model that expresses biological phenomena. Indeed, various techniques for parameter optimization have been devised and implemented in both free and commercial software. While the computational time for parameter estimation has been greatly reduced, due to improvements in calculation algorithms and the advent of high performance computers, the accuracy of parameter estimation has not been addressed. We propose a new approach for parameter optimization by using differential elimination, to estimate kinetic parameter values with a high degree of accuracy. First, we utilize differential elimination, which is an algebraic approach for rewriting a system of differential equations into another equivalent system, to derive the constraints between kinetic parameters from differential equations. Second, we estimate the kinetic parameters introducing these constraints into an objective function, in addition to the error function of the square difference between the measured and estimated data, in the standard parameter optimization method. To evaluate the ability of our method, we performed a simulation study by using the objective function with and without the newly developed constraints: the parameters in two models of linear and non-linear equations, under the assumption that only one molecule in each model can be measured, were estimated by using a genetic algorithm (GA) and particle swarm optimization (PSO). As a result, the introduction of new constraints was dramatically effective: the GA and PSO with new constraints could successfully estimate the kinetic parameters in the simulated models, with a high degree of accuracy, while the conventional GA and PSO methods without them frequently failed. The introduction of new constraints in an objective function by using differential elimination

  18. Parameter optimization by using differential elimination: a general approach for introducing constraints into objective functions

    PubMed Central

    2010-01-01

    Background The investigation of network dynamics is a major issue in systems and synthetic biology. One of the essential steps in a dynamics investigation is the parameter estimation in the model that expresses biological phenomena. Indeed, various techniques for parameter optimization have been devised and implemented in both free and commercial software. While the computational time for parameter estimation has been greatly reduced, due to improvements in calculation algorithms and the advent of high performance computers, the accuracy of parameter estimation has not been addressed. Results We propose a new approach for parameter optimization by using differential elimination, to estimate kinetic parameter values with a high degree of accuracy. First, we utilize differential elimination, which is an algebraic approach for rewriting a system of differential equations into another equivalent system, to derive the constraints between kinetic parameters from differential equations. Second, we estimate the kinetic parameters introducing these constraints into an objective function, in addition to the error function of the square difference between the measured and estimated data, in the standard parameter optimization method. To evaluate the ability of our method, we performed a simulation study by using the objective function with and without the newly developed constraints: the parameters in two models of linear and non-linear equations, under the assumption that only one molecule in each model can be measured, were estimated by using a genetic algorithm (GA) and particle swarm optimization (PSO). As a result, the introduction of new constraints was dramatically effective: the GA and PSO with new constraints could successfully estimate the kinetic parameters in the simulated models, with a high degree of accuracy, while the conventional GA and PSO methods without them frequently failed. Conclusions The introduction of new constraints in an objective function by

  19. Angiotensin-converting enzyme and matrix metalloproteinase inhibition with developing heart failure: comparative effects on left ventricular function and geometry

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    McElmurray, J. H. 3rd; Mukherjee, R.; New, R. B.; Sampson, A. C.; King, M. K.; Hendrick, J. W.; Goldberg, A.; Peterson, T. J.; Hallak, H.; Zile, M. R.; hide

    1999-01-01

    The progression of congestive heart failure (CHF) is left ventricular (LV) myocardial remodeling. The matrix metalloproteinases (MMPs) contribute to tissue remodeling and therefore MMP inhibition may serve as a useful therapeutic target in CHF. Angiotensin converting enzyme (ACE) inhibition favorably affects LV myocardial remodeling in CHF. This study examined the effects of specific MMP inhibition, ACE inhibition, and combined treatment on LV systolic and diastolic function in a model of CHF. Pigs were randomly assigned to five groups: 1) rapid atrial pacing (240 beats/min) for 3 weeks (n = 8); 2) ACE inhibition (fosinopril, 2.5 mg/kg b.i.d. orally) and rapid pacing (n = 8); 3) MMP inhibition (PD166793 2 mg/kg/day p.o.) and rapid pacing (n = 8); 4) combined ACE and MMP inhibition (2.5 mg/kg b.i.d. and 2 mg/kg/day, respectively) and rapid pacing (n = 8); and 5) controls (n = 9). LV peak wall stress increased by 2-fold with rapid pacing and was reduced in all treatment groups. LV fractional shortening fell by nearly 2-fold with rapid pacing and increased in all treatment groups. The circumferential fiber shortening-systolic stress relation was reduced with rapid pacing and increased in the ACE inhibition and combination groups. LV myocardial stiffness constant was unchanged in the rapid pacing group, increased nearly 2-fold in the MMP inhibition group, and was normalized in the ACE inhibition and combination treatment groups. Increased MMP activation contributes to the LV dilation and increased wall stress with pacing CHF and a contributory downstream mechanism of ACE inhibition is an effect on MMP activity.

  20. Angiotensin-converting enzyme and matrix metalloproteinase inhibition with developing heart failure: comparative effects on left ventricular function and geometry

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    McElmurray, J. H. 3rd; Mukherjee, R.; New, R. B.; Sampson, A. C.; King, M. K.; Hendrick, J. W.; Goldberg, A.; Peterson, T. J.; Hallak, H.; Zile, M. R.; Spinale, F. G.

    1999-01-01

    The progression of congestive heart failure (CHF) is left ventricular (LV) myocardial remodeling. The matrix metalloproteinases (MMPs) contribute to tissue remodeling and therefore MMP inhibition may serve as a useful therapeutic target in CHF. Angiotensin converting enzyme (ACE) inhibition favorably affects LV myocardial remodeling in CHF. This study examined the effects of specific MMP inhibition, ACE inhibition, and combined treatment on LV systolic and diastolic function in a model of CHF. Pigs were randomly assigned to five groups: 1) rapid atrial pacing (240 beats/min) for 3 weeks (n = 8); 2) ACE inhibition (fosinopril, 2.5 mg/kg b.i.d. orally) and rapid pacing (n = 8); 3) MMP inhibition (PD166793 2 mg/kg/day p.o.) and rapid pacing (n = 8); 4) combined ACE and MMP inhibition (2.5 mg/kg b.i.d. and 2 mg/kg/day, respectively) and rapid pacing (n = 8); and 5) controls (n = 9). LV peak wall stress increased by 2-fold with rapid pacing and was reduced in all treatment groups. LV fractional shortening fell by nearly 2-fold with rapid pacing and increased in all treatment groups. The circumferential fiber shortening-systolic stress relation was reduced with rapid pacing and increased in the ACE inhibition and combination groups. LV myocardial stiffness constant was unchanged in the rapid pacing group, increased nearly 2-fold in the MMP inhibition group, and was normalized in the ACE inhibition and combination treatment groups. Increased MMP activation contributes to the LV dilation and increased wall stress with pacing CHF and a contributory downstream mechanism of ACE inhibition is an effect on MMP activity.

  1. Increasing the qualitative understanding of optimal functionality in older adults: a focus group based study.

    PubMed

    Algilani, Samal; Östlund-Lagerström, Lina; Schoultz, Ida; Brummer, Robert J; Kihlgren, Annica

    2016-03-23

    Decreased independence and loss of functional ability are issues regarded as inevitably connected to old age. This ageism may have negative influences on older adults' beliefs about aging, making it difficult for them to focus on their current ability to maintain a good health. It is therefore important to change focus towards promoting Optimal Functionality (OF). OF is a concept putting the older adult's perspective on health and function in focus, however, the concept is still under development. Hence, the aim was to extend the concept of optimal functionality in various groups of older adults. A qualitative study was conducted based on focus group discussions (FGD). In total 6 FGDs were performed, including 37 older adults from three different groups: group 1) senior athletes, group 2) free living older adults, group 3) older adults living in senior living homes. All data was transcribed verbatim and analyzed following the process of deductive content analysis. The principal outcome of the analysis was "to function as optimally as you possibly can", which was perceived as the core of the concept. Further, the concept of OF was described as multifactorial and several new factors could be added to the original model of OF. Additionally the findings of the study support that all three cornerstones comprising OF have to occur simultaneously in order for the older adult to function as optimal as possible. OF is a multifaceted and subjective concept, which should be individually defined by the older adult. This study further makes evident that older adults as a group are heterogeneous in terms of their preferences and views on health and should thus be approached as such in the health care setting. Therefore it is important to promote an individualized approach as a base when caring for older adults.

  2. Optimal pulse shapes for magnetic stimulation of fibers: An analytical approach using the excitation functional.

    PubMed

    Suarez-Bagnasco, Diego; Armentano-Feijoo, R; Suarez-Antola, R

    2010-01-01

    An analytical approach to threshold problems in functional magnetic stimulation of nerve and skeletal muscle fibers was recently proposed, framed in the concept of excitation functional. Three generations of available equipments for magnetic stimulation are briefly considered, stressing the corresponding pulse shape in the stimulation coils. Using the criterion of minimum energy dissipated in biological tissues, an optimal shape for a current pulse in the coil that produces a just threshold depolarization in a nerve or skeletal muscle fiber is found. The method can be further developed and applied to other threshold problems in functional electric stimulation.

  3. Estimating Contrast Transfer Function and Associated Parameters by Constrained Nonlinear Optimization

    SciTech Connect

    Yang, Chao; Jiang, Wen; Chen, Dong-Hua; Adiga, Umesh; Ng, Esmond G.; Chiu, Wah

    2008-07-28

    The three-dimensional reconstruction of macromolecules from two-dimensional single-particle electron images requires determination and correction of the contrast transfer function (CTF) and envelope function. A computational algorithm based on constrained non-linear optimization is developed to estimate the essential parameters in the CTF and envelope function model simultaneously and automatically. The application of this estimation method is demonstrated with focal series images of amorphous carbon film as well as images of ice-embedded icosahedral virus particles suspended across holes.

  4. Curcumin inhibition of the functional interaction between integrin α6β4 and the epidermal growth factor receptor.

    PubMed

    Soung, Young Hwa; Chung, Jun

    2011-05-01

    The functional interaction between integrin α6β4 and growth factor receptors has been implicated in key signaling pathways important for cancer cell function. However, few attempts have been made to selectively target this interaction for therapeutic intervention. Previous studies showed that curcumin, a yellow pigment isolated from turmeric, inhibits integrin α6β4 signaling important for breast carcinoma cell motility and invasion, but the mechanism is not currently known. To address this issue, we tested the hypothesis that curcumin inhibits the functional interaction between α6β4 and the epidermal growth factor receptor (EGFR). In this study, we found that curcumin disrupts functional and physical interactions between α6β4 and EGFR, and blocks α6β4/EGFR-dependent functions of carcinoma cells expressing the signaling competent form of α6β4. We further showed that curcumin inhibits EGF-dependent mobilization of α6β4 from hemidesmosomes to the leading edges of migrating cells such as lammelipodia and filopodia, and thereby prevents α6β4 distribution to lipid rafts where functional interactions between α6β4 and EGFR occur. These data suggest a novel paradigm in which curcumin inhibits α6β4 signaling and functions by altering intracellular localization of α6β4, thus preventing its association with signaling receptors such as EGFR.

  5. Liguzinediol improved the heart function and inhibited myocardial cell apoptosis in rats with heart failure

    PubMed Central

    Li, Yu; Song, Ping; Zhu, Qing; Yin, Qiu-yi; Ji, Jia-wen; Li, Wei; Bian, Hui-min

    2014-01-01

    Aim: Liguzinediol is a novel derivative of ligustrazine isolated from the traditional Chinese medicine Chuanxiong (Ligusticum wallichii Franch), and produces significant positive inotropic effect in isolated rat hearts. In this study we investigated the effects of liguzinediol on a rat model of heart failure. Methods: To induce heart failure, male SD rats were injected with doxorubicin (DOX, 2 mg/kg, ip) once a week for 4 weeks. Then the rats were administered with liguzinediol (5, 10, 20 mg·kg−1·d−1, po) for 2 weeks. Hemodynamic examination was conducted to evaluate heart function. Myocardial cell apoptosis was examined morphologically. The expression of related genes and proteins were analyzed using immunohistochemical staining and Western blot assays, respectively. Results: Oral administration of liguzinediol dose-dependently improved the heart function in DOX-treated rats. Ele