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Sample records for zebra complex disease

  1. Molecular and Physiological Properties Associated with Zebra Complex Disease in Potatoes and Its Relation with Candidatus Liberibacter Contents in Psyllid Vectors

    PubMed Central

    Alvarado, Veria Y.; Odokonyero, Denis; Duncan, Olivia; Mirkov, T. Erik; Scholthof, Herman B.

    2012-01-01

    Zebra complex (ZC) disease on potatoes is associated with Candidatus Liberibacter solanacearum (CLs), an α-proteobacterium that resides in the plant phloem and is transmitted by the potato psyllid Bactericera cockerelli (Šulc). The name ZC originates from the brown striping in fried chips of infected tubers, but the whole plants also exhibit a variety of morphological features and symptoms for which the physiological or molecular basis are not understood. We determined that compared to healthy plants, stems of ZC-plants accumulate starch and more than three-fold total protein, including gene expression regulatory factors (e.g. cyclophilin) and tuber storage proteins (e.g., patatins), indicating that ZC-affected stems are reprogrammed to exhibit tuber-like physiological properties. Furthermore, the total phenolic content in ZC potato stems was elevated two-fold, and amounts of polyphenol oxidase enzyme were also high, both serving to explain the ZC-hallmark rapid brown discoloration of air-exposed damaged tissue. Newly developed quantitative and/or conventional PCR demonstrated that the percentage of psyllids in laboratory colonies containing detectable levels of CLs and its titer could fluctuate over time with effects on colony prolificacy, but presumed reproduction-associated primary endosymbiont levels remained stable. Potato plants exposed in the laboratory to psyllid populations with relatively low-CLs content survived while exposure of plants to high-CLs psyllids rapidly culminated in a lethal collapse. In conclusion, we identified plant physiological biomarkers associated with the presence of ZC and/or CLs in the vegetative potato plant tissue and determined that the titer of CLs in the psyllid population directly affects the rate of disease development in plants. PMID:22615987

  2. Susceptibility of selected potato varieties to zebra chip potato disease

    Zebra chip (ZC), an emerging and serious disease of potato has caused millions of dollars in losses to the potato industry in the United States, Mexico, Central America, and New Zealand. The disease has recently been associated with a previously undescribed species of liberibacter tentatively named ...

  3. Potato psyllid vector of zebra chip disease in Pacific Northwest

    Zebra chip is a destructive disease of potatoes in the Pacific Northwest and other potato production regions of North America. The pathogen associated with this disease is transmitted by the potato psyllid. A team of researchers which included a scientist at the ARS in Wapato, WA updated an extens...

  4. FindZebra: a search engine for rare diseases.

    PubMed

    Dragusin, Radu; Petcu, Paula; Lioma, Christina; Larsen, Birger; Jørgensen, Henrik L; Cox, Ingemar J; Hansen, Lars Kai; Ingwersen, Peter; Winther, Ole

    2013-06-01

    The web has become a primary information resource about illnesses and treatments for both medical and non-medical users. Standard web search is by far the most common interface to this information. It is therefore of interest to find out how well web search engines work for diagnostic queries and what factors contribute to successes and failures. Among diseases, rare (or orphan) diseases represent an especially challenging and thus interesting class to diagnose as each is rare, diverse in symptoms and usually has scattered resources associated with it. We design an evaluation approach for web search engines for rare disease diagnosis which includes 56 real life diagnostic cases, performance measures, information resources and guidelines for customising Google Search to this task. In addition, we introduce FindZebra, a specialized (vertical) rare disease search engine. FindZebra is powered by open source search technology and uses curated freely available online medical information. FindZebra outperforms Google Search in both default set-up and customised to the resources used by FindZebra. We extend FindZebra with specialized functionalities exploiting medical ontological information and UMLS medical concepts to demonstrate different ways of displaying the retrieved results to medical experts. Our results indicate that a specialized search engine can improve the diagnostic quality without compromising the ease of use of the currently widely popular standard web search. The proposed evaluation approach can be valuable for future development and benchmarking. The FindZebra search engine is available at http://www.findzebra.com/. Copyright © 2013 Elsevier Ireland Ltd. All rights reserved.

  5. Gene duplication and fragmentation in the zebra finch major histocompatibility complex.

    PubMed

    Balakrishnan, Christopher N; Ekblom, Robert; Völker, Martin; Westerdahl, Helena; Godinez, Ricardo; Kotkiewicz, Holly; Burt, David W; Graves, Tina; Griffin, Darren K; Warren, Wesley C; Edwards, Scott V

    2010-04-01

    Due to its high polymorphism and importance for disease resistance, the major histocompatibility complex (MHC) has been an important focus of many vertebrate genome projects. Avian MHC organization is of particular interest because the chicken Gallus gallus, the avian species with the best characterized MHC, possesses a highly streamlined minimal essential MHC, which is linked to resistance against specific pathogens. It remains unclear the extent to which this organization describes the situation in other birds and whether it represents a derived or ancestral condition. The sequencing of the zebra finch Taeniopygia guttata genome, in combination with targeted bacterial artificial chromosome (BAC) sequencing, has allowed us to characterize an MHC from a highly divergent and diverse avian lineage, the passerines. The zebra finch MHC exhibits a complex structure and history involving gene duplication and fragmentation. The zebra finch MHC includes multiple Class I and Class II genes, some of which appear to be pseudogenes, and spans a much more extensive genomic region than the chicken MHC, as evidenced by the presence of MHC genes on each of seven BACs spanning 739 kb. Cytogenetic (FISH) evidence and the genome assembly itself place core MHC genes on as many as four chromosomes with TAP and Class I genes mapping to different chromosomes. MHC Class II regions are further characterized by high endogenous retroviral content. Lastly, we find strong evidence of selection acting on sites within passerine MHC Class I and Class II genes. The zebra finch MHC differs markedly from that of the chicken, the only other bird species with a complete genome sequence. The apparent lack of synteny between TAP and the expressed MHC Class I locus is in fact reminiscent of a pattern seen in some mammalian lineages and may represent convergent evolution. Our analyses of the zebra finch MHC suggest a complex history involving chromosomal fission, gene duplication and translocation in the

  6. Gene duplication and fragmentation in the zebra finch major histocompatibility complex

    PubMed Central

    2010-01-01

    Background Due to its high polymorphism and importance for disease resistance, the major histocompatibility complex (MHC) has been an important focus of many vertebrate genome projects. Avian MHC organization is of particular interest because the chicken Gallus gallus, the avian species with the best characterized MHC, possesses a highly streamlined minimal essential MHC, which is linked to resistance against specific pathogens. It remains unclear the extent to which this organization describes the situation in other birds and whether it represents a derived or ancestral condition. The sequencing of the zebra finch Taeniopygia guttata genome, in combination with targeted bacterial artificial chromosome (BAC) sequencing, has allowed us to characterize an MHC from a highly divergent and diverse avian lineage, the passerines. Results The zebra finch MHC exhibits a complex structure and history involving gene duplication and fragmentation. The zebra finch MHC includes multiple Class I and Class II genes, some of which appear to be pseudogenes, and spans a much more extensive genomic region than the chicken MHC, as evidenced by the presence of MHC genes on each of seven BACs spanning 739 kb. Cytogenetic (FISH) evidence and the genome assembly itself place core MHC genes on as many as four chromosomes with TAP and Class I genes mapping to different chromosomes. MHC Class II regions are further characterized by high endogenous retroviral content. Lastly, we find strong evidence of selection acting on sites within passerine MHC Class I and Class II genes. Conclusion The zebra finch MHC differs markedly from that of the chicken, the only other bird species with a complete genome sequence. The apparent lack of synteny between TAP and the expressed MHC Class I locus is in fact reminiscent of a pattern seen in some mammalian lineages and may represent convergent evolution. Our analyses of the zebra finch MHC suggest a complex history involving chromosomal fission, gene

  7. Nondestructive detection of zebra chip disease in potatoes using near-infrared spectroscopy

    Near-Infrared (NIR) spectroscopy in the wavelength region from 900 nm to 2600 nm was evaluated as the basis for a rapid, non-destructive method for the detection of Zebra Chip disease in potatoes and the measurement of sugar concentrations in affected tubers. Using stepwise regression in conjunction...

  8. Variations in Zebra Chip disease expression and tuber biochemistry in response to vector density

    This study examined effects of the number of ‘Candidatus Liberibacter solanacearum’ (Lso)-positive psyllids feeding on potatoes to Lso titers, zebra chip disease (ZC) symptom severity, and levels of amino acids, carbohydrates, and phenolics in tubers harvested weeks later. Red La Soda and Russet Nor...

  9. Characterization of physiological and molecular processes associated with potato response to Zebra chip disease

    Transcriptional analyses were applied to identify molecular mechanisms associated with the response of leaf and root potato tissues to ‘Ca. Liberibacter solanacearum’ (Lso) infection, causal agent of zebra chip disease (ZC). Lso infection affected several host processes including defense response-, ...

  10. Non-destructive NIR detection of Zebra Chip disease in whole potatoes (abstract)

    Potatoes are the 4th biggest food crop worldwide and the leading vegetable crop in the U.S., accounting for 15 percent of vegetable sales. Over 50% of potatoes are consumed as processed products such as French fries and chips. Zebra Chip (ZC) is a disease of potatoes that causes brown discoloration ...

  11. First report of zebra chip disease and Candidatus Liberibacter solanacearum on potatoes in Idaho

    In September of 2011, potato (Solanum tuberosum) tubers in a packing facility in (Idaho Falls???) were observed with internal discolorations suggestive of the zebra chip disease (ZC). Symptoms were observed in 1-2% of tubers of Russet Burbank and Russet Norkotah and included brown spots and streak...

  12. Characterization of host plant resistance to zebra chip disease from species-derived potato genotypes and the identification of new sources of zebra chip resistance

    ‘Candidatus Liberibacter solanacearum’ (Lso), an uncultivable phloem-limited phytopathogenic bacterium, is known to be associated with Zebra Chip disease (ZC), which represents a major threat to potato production in the US and elsewhere. This pathogen is transmitted by the phloem-feeding potato psyl...

  13. Aspects of pathogen genomics, diversity, epidemiology, vector dynamics, and disease management for a newly emerged disease of potato: zebra chip.

    PubMed

    Lin, Hong; Gudmestad, Neil C

    2013-06-01

    An overview is provided for the aspects of history, biology, genomics, genetics, and epidemiology of zebra chip (ZC), a destructive disease of potato (Solanum tuberosum) that represents a major threat to the potato industries in the United States as well as other potato-production regions in the world. The disease is associated with a gram-negative, phloem-limited, insect-vectored, unculturable prokaryote, 'Candidatus Liberibacter solanacearum', that belongs to the Rhizobiaceae family of α-Proteobacteria. The closest cultivated relatives of 'Ca. L. solanacearum' are members of the group of bacteria known as the α-2 subgroup. In spite of the fact that Koch's postulates sensu stricto have not been fulfilled, a great deal of progress has been made in understanding the ZC disease complex since discovery of the disease. Nevertheless, more research is needed to better understand vector biology, disease mechanisms, host response, and epidemiology in the context of vector-pathogen-plant interactions. Current ZC management strategies focus primarily on psyllid control. The ultimate control of ZC likely relies on host resistance. Unfortunately, all commercial potato cultivars are susceptible to ZC. Elucidation of the 'Ca. L. solanacearum' genome sequence has provided insights into the genetic basis of virulence and physiological and metabolic capability of this organism. Finally, the most effective, sustainable management of ZC is likely to be based on integrated strategies, including removal or reduction of vectors or inocula, improvement of host resistance to the presumptive pathogen and psyllid vectors, and novel gene-based therapeutic treatment.

  14. The effects of Zebra Chip disease development and bacterial titer on biochemical properties in relation to the time of infection

    Potato tuber biochemical responses to ‘Candidatus’ Liberibacter solanacearum (Lso), the causal agent of Zebra chip disease, were evaluated both within infected tubers and across different infection dates. Tuber biochemistry also was related to symptom severity and bacterial titer. Symptom severity w...

  15. Zebra Chip disease and potato biochemistry: Tuber physiological changes in response to ‘Candidatus Liberibacter solanacearum’ infection over time

    Zebra chip disease (ZC), putatively caused by ‘Candidatus Liberibacter solanacearum’ (Lso), is of increasing concern to potato production in Mexico, the United States, and New Zealand. However, little is known about host tuber physiological changes that result in ZC symptom formation. This study exp...

  16. Characterization of the Serralysin-like gene of 'Ca. Liberibacter solanacearum' associated with Potato Zebra Chip disease

    The non-culturable bacterium ‘Candidatus Liberibacter solanacearum’ (Lso) is the causative agent of zebra chip disease in potato. Computational analysis of the Lso genome revealed a serralysin-like gene based on conserved domains characteristic of genes encoding metalloprotease enzymes similar to se...

  17. Association of promising germplasm exhibiting tolerance to psyllids, aphids, and zebra chip disease with foliar host chemistry

    Long term, sustainable management of zebra chip disease of potato, caused by “Candidatus Liberibacter solanacearum” (Lso) and vectored by potato psyllids (Bactericera cockerelli Sulc), will require development of new cultivars resistant or tolerant to infection and/or capable of reducing spread. The...

  18. Cadmium stress assessment based on the electrocardiogram characteristics of zebra fish (Danio rerio): QRS complex could play an important role.

    PubMed

    Xing, Na; Ji, Lizhen; Song, Jie; Ma, Jingchun; Li, Shangge; Ren, Zongming; Xu, Fei; Zhu, Jianping

    2017-10-01

    The electrocardiogram (ECG) of zebra fish (Danio rerio) expresses cardiac features that are similar to humans. Here we use sharp microelectrode measurements to obtain ECG characteristics in adult zebra fish and analyze the effects of cadmium chloride (CdCl 2 ) on the heart. We observe the overall changes of ECG parameters in different treatments (0.1 TU, 0.5 TU and 1.0 TU CdCl 2 ), including P wave, Q wave, R wave, S wave, T wave, PR interval (atrial contraction), QRS complex (ventricular depolarization), ST segment, and QT interval (ventricular repolarization). The trends of the ECG parameters showed some responses to the concentration and exposure time of CdCl 2 , but it was difficult to obtain more information about the useful indicators in water quality assessment depending on tendency analysis alone. A self-organizing map (SOM) showed that P values, R values, and T values were similar; R wave and T wave amplitude were similar; and most important, QRS value was similar to the CdCl 2 stress according to the classified data patterns including CdCl 2 stress (E) and ECG components based on the Ward linkage. It suggested that the duration of QRS complex was related to environmental stress E directly. The specification and evaluation of ECG parameters in Cd 2+ pollution suggested that there is a markedly significant correlation between QRS complex and CdCl 2 stress with the highest r (0.729) and the smallest p (0.002) among all ECG characteristics. In this case, it is concluded that QRS complex can be used as an indicator in the CdCl 2 stress assessment due to the lowest AIC data abased on the linear regression model between the CdCl 2 stress and ECG parameters. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  19. Characterization of host plant resistance to zebra chip disease from species-derived potato genotypes and the identification of new sources of zebra chip resistance.

    PubMed

    Rashidi, Mahnaz; Novy, Richard G; Wallis, Christopher M; Rashed, Arash

    2017-01-01

    'Candidatus Liberibacter solanacearum' (Lso), an uncultivable phloem-limited phytopathogenic bacteria, is known to be associated with Zebra Chip disease (ZC), which represents a major threat to potato production in the US and elsewhere. This pathogen is transmitted by the phloem-feeding potato psyllid, Bactericera cockerelli Sulc (Hem. Triozidae). Currently, there are no reports of resistance to ZC in cultivated potatoes. This greenhouse study was conducted to evaluate Lso transmission success and the susceptibility of 11 potato breeding clones, representing diverge genetic background, to ZC, in relation to a susceptible commercial cultivar, Russet Burbank. Individual plants were exposed to two Lso-positive potato psyllids for 48 hours. The percentage of successful Lso transmission varied across the evaluated genotypes ranging between 7 and 57%. Freshly-cut and fried tubers showed significant variation in ZC symptom severity among the breeding clones, with several genotypes expressing relative tolerance when compared to Russet Burbank. None of the evaluated clones showed statistically lower Lso titers than Russet Burbank with the exception of one genotype in the second year of the study. However, the presence of a non-significant relationship between average symptom severity and Lso titer indicated variations in phenotypic responses (i.e. tolerance) to Lso existed among evaluated breeding lines. Breeding clones A07781-3LB, A07781-4LB and A07781-10LB had relatively lower Lso titer (low susceptibility) and tuber symptom expression (high tolerance) among the tested genotypes. As these three clones represent full siblings, the observed effects could be indicative of the presence of a genetic basis for resistance/tolerance to ZC. Findings provide a better understanding of resistance/tolerance to ZC, and contribute to continued efforts in breeding for resistance to this disease.

  20. Characterization of host plant resistance to zebra chip disease from species-derived potato genotypes and the identification of new sources of zebra chip resistance

    PubMed Central

    Rashidi, Mahnaz; Novy, Richard G.; Wallis, Christopher M.

    2017-01-01

    ‘Candidatus Liberibacter solanacearum’ (Lso), an uncultivable phloem-limited phytopathogenic bacteria, is known to be associated with Zebra Chip disease (ZC), which represents a major threat to potato production in the US and elsewhere. This pathogen is transmitted by the phloem-feeding potato psyllid, Bactericera cockerelli Sulc (Hem. Triozidae). Currently, there are no reports of resistance to ZC in cultivated potatoes. This greenhouse study was conducted to evaluate Lso transmission success and the susceptibility of 11 potato breeding clones, representing diverge genetic background, to ZC, in relation to a susceptible commercial cultivar, Russet Burbank. Individual plants were exposed to two Lso-positive potato psyllids for 48 hours. The percentage of successful Lso transmission varied across the evaluated genotypes ranging between 7 and 57%. Freshly-cut and fried tubers showed significant variation in ZC symptom severity among the breeding clones, with several genotypes expressing relative tolerance when compared to Russet Burbank. None of the evaluated clones showed statistically lower Lso titers than Russet Burbank with the exception of one genotype in the second year of the study. However, the presence of a non-significant relationship between average symptom severity and Lso titer indicated variations in phenotypic responses (i.e. tolerance) to Lso existed among evaluated breeding lines. Breeding clones A07781-3LB, A07781-4LB and A07781-10LB had relatively lower Lso titer (low susceptibility) and tuber symptom expression (high tolerance) among the tested genotypes. As these three clones represent full siblings, the observed effects could be indicative of the presence of a genetic basis for resistance/tolerance to ZC. Findings provide a better understanding of resistance/tolerance to ZC, and contribute to continued efforts in breeding for resistance to this disease. PMID:28832618

  1. Working towards developing potato tolerance of zebra chip disease: a food science perspective

    Potato zebra chip is a major threat to worldwide potato production and is caused by ‘Candidatus Liberibacter solanacearum’ (Lso), which is vectored by potato psyllids. Albeit control can be achieved by use of insecticides to limit psyllid populations and therefore Lso spread, the recent development ...

  2. Zebra chip disease decreases tuber (Solanum tuberosum L.) protein content by attenuating protease inhibitor levels and increasing protease activities.

    PubMed

    Kumar, G N Mohan; Knowles, Lisa O; Knowles, N Richard

    2015-11-01

    Zebra chip disease of potato decreases protease inhibitor levels resulting in enhanced serine-type protease activity, decreased protein content and altered protein profiles of fully mature tubers. Zebra-chip (ZC), caused by Candidatus Liberibacter solanacearum (CLso), is a relatively new disease of potato that negatively affects growth, yield, propagation potential, and fresh and process qualities of tubers. Diseased plants produce tubers with characteristic brown discoloration of vascular tissue accompanied by elevated levels of free amino acids and reducing sugars. Here we demonstrate that ZC disease induces selective protein catabolism in tubers through modulating protease inhibitor levels. Soluble protein content of tubers from CLso-infected plants was 33% lower than from non-infected plants and electrophoretic analyses revealed substantial reductions in major tuber proteins. Patatin (~40 kDa) and ser-, asp- (22 kDa) and cys-type (85 kDa) protease inhibitors were either absent or greatly reduced in ZC-afflicted tubers. In contrast to healthy (non-infected) tubers, the proteolytic activity in CLso infected tubers was high and the ability of extracts from infected tubers to inhibit trypsin (ser-type) and papain (cys-type) proteases greatly attenuated. Moreover, extracts from CLso-infected tubers rapidly catabolized proteins purified from healthy tubers (40 kDa patatin, 22 kDa protease inhibitors, 85 kDa potato multicystatin) when subjected to proteolysis individually. In contrast, crude extracts from non-infected tubers effectively inhibited the proteolytic activity from ZC-afflicted tubers. These results suggest that the altered protein profile of ZC afflicted tubers is largely due to loss of ser- and cys-type protease inhibitors. Further analysis revealed a novel PMSF-sensitive (ser) protease (ca. 80-120 kDa) in CLso infected tubers. PMSF abolished the proteolytic activities responsible for degrading patatin, the 22 kDa protease inhibitor(s) and potato

  3. Dynamics of zebra finch and mockingbird vocalizations

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cimenser, Aylin

    Along with humans, whales, and bats, three groups of birds which include songbirds (oscines) such as the Zebra Finch (Taeniopygia guttata) and Mockingbird (Mimus polyglottos) are the only creatures known to learn sounds by imitation. Numerous similarities between human and songbird vocalizations exist and, recently, it has been shown that Zebra Finch in particular possesses a gene, FoxP2, known to be involved in human language. This thesis investigates song development in Zebra Finches, as well as the temporal dynamics of song in Mockingbirds. Zebra Finches have long been the system of choice for studying vocal development, ontogeny, and complexity in birdsong. Physicists find them intriguing because the spectrally complex vocalizations of the Zebra Finch can exhibit sudden transitions to chaotic dynamics, period doubling & mode-locking phenomena. Mockingbirds, by contrast, provide an ideal system to examine the richness of an avian repertoire, since these musically versatile songbirds typically know upwards of 200 songs. To analyse birdsong data, we have developed a novel clustering algorithm that can be applied to the bird's syllables, tracing their dynamics back to the earliest stages of vocal development. To characterize birdsong we have used Fourier techniques, based upon multitaper spectral analysis, to optimally work around the constraints imposed by (Heisenberg's) time-frequency uncertainty principle. Furthermore, estimates that provide optimal compromise between frequency and temporal resolution have beautiful connections with solutions to the Helmholtz wave equation in prolate spheroidal coordinates. We have used this connection to provide firm foundation for certain heuristics used in the literature to compute associated spectral derivatives and supply a pedagogical account here in this thesis. They are of interest because spectral derivatives emphasize sudden changes in the dynamics of the underlying phenomenon, and often provide a nice way to visualize

  4. Combination therapeutics in complex diseases.

    PubMed

    He, Bing; Lu, Cheng; Zheng, Guang; He, Xiaojuan; Wang, Maolin; Chen, Gao; Zhang, Ge; Lu, Aiping

    2016-12-01

    The biological redundancies in molecular networks of complex diseases limit the efficacy of many single drug therapies. Combination therapeutics, as a common therapeutic method, involve pharmacological intervention using several drugs that interact with multiple targets in the molecular networks of diseases and may achieve better efficacy and/or less toxicity than monotherapy in practice. The development of combination therapeutics is complicated by several critical issues, including identifying multiple targets, targeting strategies and the drug combination. This review summarizes the current achievements in combination therapeutics, with a particular emphasis on the efforts to develop combination therapeutics for complex diseases. © 2016 The Authors. Journal of Cellular and Molecular Medicine published by John Wiley & Sons Ltd and Foundation for Cellular and Molecular Medicine.

  5. Examining the Potential Role of Foliar Chemistry in Imparting Potato Germplasm Tolerance to Potato Psyllid, Green Peach Aphid, and Zebra Chip Disease.

    PubMed

    Prager, S M; Wallis, C M; Jones, M; Novy, R; Trumble, J T

    2018-02-09

    Long-term, sustainable management of zebra chip disease of potato, caused by 'Candidatus Liberibacter solanacearum' (Lso) and vectored by potato psyllids (Bactericera cockerelli Sulc [Hemiptera: Triozidae]), requires development of cultivars resistant or tolerant to infection or capable of reducing spread or both. We examined the influence that five experimental breeding clones of potato had on potato psyllids and their ability to vector Lso. The ability of these potato clones to resist aphids (green peach aphids, Myzus persicae Sulzer [Hemiptera: Aphididae]) also was examined. Due to the importance of host chemistry on plant-insect interactions, levels of primary metabolites of amino acids and sugars, as well as secondary metabolites including polyphenolics, terpenoids, and alkaloids were compared between breeding clones and a commercial cultivar. Findings for compound levels then were associated with observed changes in host susceptibility to psyllids or aphids. Psyllids oviposited less on three breeding clones than Atlantic, but no significant effects of breeding clones on psyllid feeding or choice were observed. Aphid reproduction was reduced on two clones relative to Atlantic. A05379-211 had greater sugar levels and postpsyllid amino acid levels than Atlantic. Total alkaloid and phenolic levels were greater in all breeding clones than Atlantic. Total terpenoid levels were greater in PALB03016-3 and PALB03016-6 than Atlantic, which might explain, in part, the observed resistance to psyllid oviposition and aphid reproduction. Overall, these results suggest that increased levels of certain metabolites in breeding clones could affect psyllid and aphid reproduction. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of Entomological Society of America 2017. This work is written by (a) US Government employee(s) and is in the public domain in the US.

  6. Dissecting Complex Diseases in Complex Populations

    PubMed Central

    Choudhry, Shweta; Seibold, Max A.; Borrell, Luisa N.; Tang, Hua; Serebrisky, Denise; Chapela, Rocio; Rodriguez-Santana, José R.; Avila, Pedro C.; Ziv, Elad; Rodriguez-Cintron, William; Risch, Neil J.; Burchard, Esteban González

    2007-01-01

    Asthma is a common but complex respiratory ailment; current data indicate that interaction of genetic and environmental factors lead to its clinical expression. In the United States, asthma prevalence, morbidity, and mortality vary widely among different Latino ethnic groups. The prevalence of asthma is highest in Puerto Ricans, intermediate in Dominicans and Cubans, and lowest in Mexicans and Central Americans. Independently, known socioeconomic, environmental, and genetic differences do not fully account for this observation. One potential explanation is that there may be unique and ethnic-specific gene–environment interactions that can differentially modify risk for asthma in Latino ethnic groups. These gene–environment interactions can be tested using genetic ancestry as a surrogate for genetic risk factors. Latinos are admixed and share varying proportions of African, Native American, and European ancestry. Most Latinos are unaware of their precise ancestry and report their ancestry based on the national origin of their family and their physical appearance. The unavailability of precise ancestry and the genetic complexity among Latinos may complicate asthma research studies in this population. On the other hand, precisely because of this rich mixture of ancestry, Latinos present a unique opportunity to disentangle the clinical, social, environmental, and genetic underpinnings of population differences in asthma prevalence, severity, and bronchodilator drug responsiveness. PMID:17607004

  7. Ribonucleoprotein complexes in neurologic diseases.

    PubMed

    Ule, Jernej

    2008-10-01

    Ribonucleoprotein (RNP) complexes regulate the tissue-specific RNA processing and transport that increases the coding capacity of our genome and the ability to respond quickly and precisely to the diverse set of signals. This review focuses on three proteins that are part of RNP complexes in most cells of our body: TAR DNA-binding protein (TDP-43), the survival motor neuron protein (SMN), and fragile-X mental retardation protein (FMRP). In particular, the review asks the question why these ubiquitous proteins are primarily associated with defects in specific regions of the central nervous system? To understand this question, it is important to understand the role of genetic and cellular environment in causing the defect in the protein, as well as how the defective protein leads to misregulation of specific target RNAs. Two approaches for comprehensive analysis of defective RNA-protein interactions are presented. The first approach defines the RNA code or the collection of proteins that bind to a certain cis-acting RNA site in order to lead to a predictable outcome. The second approach defines the RNA map or the summary of positions on target RNAs where binding of a particular RNA-binding protein leads to a predictable outcome. As we learn more about the RNA codes and maps that guide the action of the dynamic RNP world in our brain, possibilities for new treatments of neurologic diseases are bound to emerge.

  8. Zebra chip development during storage: cause for concern?

    Zebra chip disease is associated with infections by ‘Candidatus Liberibacter solanacearum’ (Lso), a bacterium spread by the potato psyllid Bactericera cockerelli. A major concern of the potato industry is the likelihood that Lso could cause asymptomatic infections prior to placement of tubers in col...

  9. CNTNAP2 is a direct FoxP2 target in vitro and in vivo in zebra finches: complex regulation by age and activity.

    PubMed

    Adam, I; Mendoza, E; Kobalz, U; Wohlgemuth, S; Scharff, C

    2017-07-01

    Mutations of FOXP2 are associated with altered brain structure, including the striatal part of the basal ganglia, and cause a severe speech and language disorder. Songbirds serve as a tractable neurobiological model for speech and language research. Experimental downregulation of FoxP2 in zebra finch Area X, a nucleus of the striatal song control circuitry, affects synaptic transmission and spine densities. It also renders song learning and production inaccurate and imprecise, similar to the speech impairment of patients carrying FOXP2 mutations. Here we show that experimental downregulation of FoxP2 in Area X using lentiviral vectors leads to reduced expression of CNTNAP2, a FOXP2 target gene in humans. In addition, natural downregulation of FoxP2 by age or by singing also downregulated CNTNAP2 expression. Furthermore, we report that FoxP2 binds to and activates the avian CNTNAP2 promoter in vitro. Taken together these data establish CNTNAP2 as a direct FoxP2 target gene in songbirds, likely affecting synaptic function relevant for song learning and song maintenance. © 2017 The Authors. Genes, Brain and Behavior published by International Behavioural and Neural Genetics Society and John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  10. Molecular ecology of zebra mussel invasions.

    PubMed

    May, Gemma E; Gelembiuk, Gregory W; Panov, Vadim E; Orlova, Marina I; Lee, Carol Eunmi

    2006-04-01

    The invasion of the zebra mussel, Dreissena polymorpha, into North American waters has resulted in profound ecological disturbances and large monetary losses. This study examined the invasion history and patterns of genetic diversity among endemic and invading populations of zebra mussels using DNA sequences from the mitochondrial cytochrome oxidase I (COI) gene. Patterns of haplotype frequency indicate that all invasive populations of zebra mussels from North America and Europe originated from the Ponto-Caspian Sea region. The distribution of haplotypes was consistent with invasive populations arising from the Black Sea drainage, but could not exclude the possibility of an origin from the Caspian Sea drainage. Similar haplotype frequencies among North American populations of D. polymorpha suggest colonization by a single founding population. There was no evidence of invasive populations arising from tectonic lakes in Turkey, while lakes in Greece and Macedonia contained only Dreissena stankovici. Populations in Turkey might be members of a sibling species complex of D. polymorpha. Ponto-Caspian derived populations of D. polymorpha (theta = 0.0011) and Dreissena bugensis (one haplotype) exhibited low levels of genetic diversity at the COI gene, perhaps as a result of repeated population bottlenecks. In contrast, geographically isolated tectonic lake populations exhibited relatively high levels of genetic diversity (theta = 0.0032 to 0.0134). It is possible that the fluctuating environment of the Ponto-Caspian basin facilitated the colonizing habit of invasive populations of D. polymorpha and D. bugensis. Our findings were concordant with the general trend of destructive freshwater invaders in the Great Lakes arising from the Ponto-Caspian Sea basin.

  11. The complexity of epigenetic diseases.

    PubMed

    Brazel, Ailbhe Jane; Vernimmen, Douglas

    2016-01-01

    Over the past 30 years, a plethora of pathogenic mutations affecting enhancer regions and epigenetic regulators have been identified. Coupled with more recent genome-wide association studies (GWAS) and epigenome-wide association studies (EWAS) implicating major roles for regulatory mutations in disease, it is clear that epigenetic mechanisms represent important biomarkers for disease development and perhaps even therapeutic targets. Here, we discuss the diversity of disease-causing mutations in enhancers and epigenetic regulators, with a particular focus on cancer. © 2015 The Authors. The Journal of Pathology published by John Wiley & Sons Ltd on behalf of Pathological Society of Great Britain and Ireland.

  12. Community of protein complexes impacts disease association

    PubMed Central

    Wang, Qianghu; Liu, Weisha; Ning, Shangwei; Ye, Jingrun; Huang, Teng; Li, Yan; Wang, Peng; Shi, Hongbo; Li, Xia

    2012-01-01

    One important challenge in the post-genomic era is uncovering the relationships among distinct pathophenotypes by using molecular signatures. Given the complex functional interdependencies between cellular components, a disease is seldom the consequence of a defect in a single gene product, instead reflecting the perturbations of a group of closely related gene products that carry out specific functions together. Therefore, it is meaningful to explore how the community of protein complexes impacts disease associations. Here, by integrating a large amount of information from protein complexes and the cellular basis of diseases, we built a human disease network in which two diseases are linked if they share common disease-related protein complex. A systemic analysis revealed that linked disease pairs exhibit higher comorbidity than those that have no links, and that the stronger association two diseases have based on protein complexes, the higher comorbidity they are prone to display. Moreover, more connected diseases tend to be malignant, which have high prevalence. We provide novel disease associations that cannot be identified through previous analysis. These findings will potentially provide biologists and clinicians new insights into the etiology, classification and treatment of diseases. PMID:22549411

  13. Simple versus complex degenerative mitral valve disease.

    PubMed

    Javadikasgari, Hoda; Mihaljevic, Tomislav; Suri, Rakesh M; Svensson, Lars G; Navia, Jose L; Wang, Robert Z; Tappuni, Bassman; Lowry, Ashley M; McCurry, Kenneth R; Blackstone, Eugene H; Desai, Milind Y; Mick, Stephanie L; Gillinov, A Marc

    2018-07-01

    At a center where surgeons favor mitral valve (MV) repair for all subsets of leaflet prolapse, we compared results of patients undergoing repair for simple versus complex degenerative MV disease. From January 1985 to January 2016, 6153 patients underwent primary isolated MV repair for degenerative disease, 3101 patients underwent primary isolated MV repair for simple disease (posterior prolapse), and 3052 patients underwent primary isolated MV repair for complex disease (anterior or bileaflet prolapse), based on preoperative echocardiographic images. Logistic regression analysis was used to generate propensity scores for risk-adjusted comparisons (n = 2065 matched pairs). Durability was assessed by longitudinal recurrence of mitral regurgitation and reoperation. Compared with patients with simple disease, those undergoing repair of complex pathology were more likely to be younger and female (both P values < .0001) but with similar symptoms (P = .3). The most common repair technique was ring/band annuloplasty (3055/99% simple vs 3000/98% complex; P = .5), followed by leaflet resection (2802/90% simple vs 2249/74% complex; P < .0001). Among propensity-matched patients, recurrence of severe mitral regurgitation 10 years after repair was 6.2% for simple pathology versus 11% for complex pathology (P = .007), reoperation at 18 years was 6.3% for simple pathology versus 11% for complex pathology, and 20-year survival was 62% for simple pathology versus 61% for complex pathology (P = .6). Early surgical intervention has become more common in patients with degenerative MV disease, regardless of valve prolapse complexity or symptom status. Valve repair was associated with similarly low operative risk and time-related survival but less durability in complex disease. Lifelong annual echocardiographic surveillance after MV repair is recommended, particularly in patients with complex disease. Copyright © 2018 The American Association for Thoracic Surgery

  14. Advances in the genetically complex autoinflammatory diseases.

    PubMed

    Ombrello, Michael J

    2015-07-01

    Monogenic diseases usually demonstrate Mendelian inheritance and are caused by highly penetrant genetic variants of a single gene. In contrast, genetically complex diseases arise from a combination of multiple genetic and environmental factors. The concept of autoinflammation originally emerged from the identification of individual, activating lesions of the innate immune system as the molecular basis of the hereditary periodic fever syndromes. In addition to these rare, monogenic forms of autoinflammation, genetically complex autoinflammatory diseases like the periodic fever, aphthous stomatitis, pharyngitis, and cervical adenitis (PFAPA) syndrome, chronic recurrent multifocal osteomyelitis (CRMO), Behçet's disease, and systemic arthritis also fulfill the definition of autoinflammatory diseases-namely, the development of apparently unprovoked episodes of inflammation without identifiable exogenous triggers and in the absence of autoimmunity. Interestingly, investigations of these genetically complex autoinflammatory diseases have implicated both innate and adaptive immune abnormalities, blurring the line between autoinflammation and autoimmunity. This reinforces the paradigm of concerted innate and adaptive immune dysfunction leading to genetically complex autoinflammatory phenotypes.

  15. [Role of psychosocial stress in complex diseases].

    PubMed

    Scantamburlo, G; Scheen, A J

    2012-01-01

    Complex diseases are chronic diseases where the interrelations between genetic predisposition and environmental factors play an essential role in the arisen and the maintenance of the pathology. Upon psychological stress, the hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal axis and the sympathetic nervous system are activated resulting in release of glucocorticoids and catecholamines. Chronic stress may induce complex diseases where alterations of nervous, endocrine and immune systems are involved. Thus, chronic stress is more likely to induce a range of effects, depending on the capacity of the subject to cope with stress. CRH ("Corticotropin Releasing Hormone") is a key factor in the stress-immunity relationship. In this article, we propose an overview of the interrelations between central nervous, endocrine and immune systems and implications for health and diseases. The objective for the clinician is to propose therapeutic strategies targeting changes in human behaviour to cope with a potentially stressful environment.

  16. Expanded complexity of unstable repeat diseases

    PubMed Central

    Polak, Urszula; McIvor, Elizabeth; Dent, Sharon Y.R.; Wells, Robert D.; Napierala, Marek

    2015-01-01

    Unstable Repeat Diseases (URDs) share a common mutational phenomenon of changes in the copy number of short, tandemly repeated DNA sequences. More than 20 human neurological diseases are caused by instability, predominantly expansion, of microsatellite sequences. Changes in the repeat size initiate a cascade of pathological processes, frequently characteristic of a unique disease or a small subgroup of the URDs. Understanding of both the mechanism of repeat instability and molecular consequences of the repeat expansions is critical to developing successful therapies for these diseases. Recent technological breakthroughs in whole genome, transcriptome and proteome analyses will almost certainly lead to new discoveries regarding the mechanisms of repeat instability, the pathogenesis of URDs, and will facilitate development of novel therapeutic approaches. The aim of this review is to give a general overview of unstable repeats diseases, highlight the complexities of these diseases, and feature the emerging discoveries in the field. PMID:23233240

  17. New Concerns Emerge as Zebra Mussel Spreads.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Walter, Martha L., Ed.

    1992-01-01

    Reports on the Zebra Mussel invasion of North American inland waterways. Discusses United States Army Corps of Engineers operations that may facilitate or be affected by the spread of Zebra Mussels, the threat to native clams, chemical and mechanical control methods, natural solutions, and ongoing research. (MCO)

  18. Bartonella endocarditis in complex congenital heart disease.

    PubMed

    Hoffman, Risa M; AboulHosn, Jamil; Child, John S; Pegues, David A

    2007-01-01

    Bartonella species are an important cause of culture-negative endocarditis, with recognized risk factors of alcoholism, homelessness, cat exposure, and pre-existing valvular disease. We report a case of Bartonella henselae endocarditis in a 36-year-old woman with complex congenital heart disease who presented with a 7-month history of hemolytic anemia, leukocytoclastic vasculitis, and recurrent fevers. Transesophageal echocardiogram revealed vegetations on the patient's native aortic valve and in the right ventricular to pulmonary artery conduit and associated bioprosthetic valve. Diagnosis of B. henselae was confirmed with serum antibody and polymerase chain reaction (PCR) testing and tissue stains. The patient was treated successfully with surgical resection and prolonged antimicrobial therapy with ceftriaxone, gentamicin, and doxycycline. A review of the literature suggests prosthetic valves and complex congenital heart disease are risk factors for Bartonella endocarditis, and a high index of suspicion with antibody and PCR testing can expedite diagnosis and improve outcomes.

  19. Zebra Stripes through the Eyes of Their Predators, Zebras, and Humans.

    PubMed

    Melin, Amanda D; Kline, Donald W; Hiramatsu, Chihiro; Caro, Tim

    2016-01-01

    The century-old idea that stripes make zebras cryptic to large carnivores has never been examined systematically. We evaluated this hypothesis by passing digital images of zebras through species-specific spatial and colour filters to simulate their appearance for the visual systems of zebras' primary predators and zebras themselves. We also measured stripe widths and luminance contrast to estimate the maximum distances from which lions, spotted hyaenas, and zebras can resolve stripes. We found that beyond ca. 50 m (daylight) and 30 m (twilight) zebra stripes are difficult for the estimated visual systems of large carnivores to resolve, but not humans. On moonless nights, stripes are difficult for all species to resolve beyond ca. 9 m. In open treeless habitats where zebras spend most time, zebras are as clearly identified by the lion visual system as are similar-sized ungulates, suggesting that stripes cannot confer crypsis by disrupting the zebra's outline. Stripes confer a minor advantage over solid pelage in masking body shape in woodlands, but the effect is stronger for humans than for predators. Zebras appear to be less able than humans to resolve stripes although they are better than their chief predators. In conclusion, compared to the uniform pelage of other sympatric herbivores it appears highly unlikely that stripes are a form of anti-predator camouflage.

  20. Susceptibility and antibody response of the laboratory model zebra finch (Taeniopygia guttata) to West Nile Virus

    Hofmeister, Erik K.; Lund, Melissa; Shearn-Bochsler, Valerie I.; Balakrishnan, Christopher N.

    2017-01-01

    Since the introduction of West Nile virus (WNV) into North America in 1999 a number of passerine bird species have been found to play a role in the amplification of the virus. Arbovirus surveillance, observational studies and experimental studies have implicated passerine birds (songbirds, e.g., crows, American robins, house sparrows, and house finches) as significant reservoirs of WNV in North America, yet we lack a tractable passerine animal model for controlled studies of the virus. The zebra finch (Taeniopygia guttata) serves as a model system across a diversity of fields, and here we develop the zebra finch a songbird model for WNV. Like many natural hosts of WNV, we found that zebra finches developed sufficient viremia to serve as a competent host, yet in general resisted mortality from infection. In the Australian zebra finch (AZF) T. g. castanotis, we detected WNV in the majority of sampled tissues by 4 days post injection (dpi). However, WNV was not detected in tissues of sacrificed birds at 14 dpi, shortly after the development of detectable anti-WNV antibodies in the majority of birds indicating successful viral clearance. We compared susceptibility between the two zebra finch subspecies AZF and Timor zebra finch (TZF) T. g. guttata. Compared to AZF, WNV RNA was detected in a larger proportion of challenged TZF and molecular detection of virus in the serum of TZF was significantly higher than in AZF. Given the observed moderate host competence and disease susceptibility, we suggest that zebra finches are appropriate as models for the study of WNV and although underutilized in this respect, may be ideal models for the study of the many diseases carried and transmitted by songbirds.

  1. Review of techniques to prevent introduction of zebra mussels (Dreissena polymorpha) during native mussel (Unionoidea) conservation activities

    Cope, W.G.; Newton, T.J.; Gatenby, C.M.

    2003-01-01

    Because of the declines in diversity and abundance of native freshwater mussels (superfamily Unionoidea), and the potential decimation of populations of native mussels resulting from the rapid spread of the exotic zebra mussel Dreissena polymorpha, management options to eliminate or reduce the threat of the zebra mussel are needed. Relocating native mussels to refugia (artificial and natural) has been proposed to mitigate the threat of zebra mussels to native species. Relocation of native mussels to refugia such as fish hatchery facilities or natural habitats within their historic range. Which are unlikely to be infested by zebra mussels, necessitates that protocols be developed to prevent the inadvertent introduction of zebra mussels. Several recent studies have developed Such protocols, and have assessed their effectiveness on the health and survival of native mussels during subsequent relocation to various refugia. The purpose of this project is to synthesize and evaluate the current protocols and to develop a set of procedures that resource managers and researchers should consider before conducting conservation activities in zebra mussel infested waters. We found that the existing protocols have many common points of concern, such as facility modification and suitability, zebra mussel risk assessment and management procedures, and health and disease management procedures. These conservation protocols may have broad applicability to other situations and locations. A summary and evaluation of the information in these main areas, along with recommended guidelines, are presented in this article.

  2. Heterospecific discrimination of Poecile vocalizations by zebra finches (Taeniopygia guttata).

    PubMed

    Guillette, Lauren M; Hoeschele, Marisa; Hahn, Allison H; Sturdy, Christopher B

    2013-08-01

    Previous perceptual research with black-capped and mountain chickadees has demonstrated that the D note of the namesake chick-a-dee call controlled species-based discrimination compared to other note types in this call. In the current experiment, we sought to determine whether discrimination performance of the chickadees was controlled by stimulus-specific properties or due to learning through experience. To accomplish this, we tested zebra finches, a songbird species that is distantly related to chickadees, and also unfamiliar with black-capped and mountain chickadee vocalizations, on the same species-based discrimination on which black-capped and mountain chickadees were previously trained. We found that zebra finches learned the discrimination in the fewest number of trials with the D note, compared to other note types (i.e., the A, B, and C notes). In addition, we compared the current results to earlier work and found that zebra finches learned the discrimination in fewer trials compared to black-capped chickadees, and, across all species, males learned the discrimination in fewer trials than females. We discuss the roles that acoustic complexity and learning play in classification of the three species of songbirds tested. More generally, these results point to the benefits derived from testing members of each sex in species that vary in their natural history, vocal output, and phylogenetic relatedness as a means to uncover the mechanisms underlying acoustic communication. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2013 APA, all rights reserved).

  3. ZEBRA battery meets USABC goals

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dustmann, Cord-H.

    In 1990, the California Air Resources Board has established a mandate to introduce electric vehicles in order to improve air quality in Los Angeles and other capitals. The United States Advanced Battery Consortium has been formed by the big car companies, Electric Power Research Institute (EPRI) and the Department of Energy in order to establish the requirements on EV-batteries and to support battery development. The ZEBRA battery system is a candidate to power future electric vehicles. Not only because its energy density is three-fold that of lead acid batteries (50% more than NiMH) but also because of all the other EV requirements such as power density, no maintenance, summer and winter operation, safety, failure tolerance and low cost potential are fulfilled. The electrode material is plain salt and nickel in combination with a ceramic electrolyte. The cell voltage is 2.58 V and the capacity of a standard cell is 32 Ah. Some hundred cells are connected in series and parallel to form a battery with about 300 V OCV. The battery system including battery controller, main circuit-breaker and cooling system is engineered for vehicle integration and ready to be mounted in a vehicle [J. Gaub, A. van Zyl, Mercedes-Benz Electric Vehicles with ZEBRA Batteries, EVS-14, Orlando, FL, Dec. 1997]. The background of these features are described.

  4. Genetic and environmental pathways to complex diseases.

    PubMed

    Gohlke, Julia M; Thomas, Reuben; Zhang, Yonqing; Rosenstein, Michael C; Davis, Allan P; Murphy, Cynthia; Becker, Kevin G; Mattingly, Carolyn J; Portier, Christopher J

    2009-05-05

    Pathogenesis of complex diseases involves the integration of genetic and environmental factors over time, making it particularly difficult to tease apart relationships between phenotype, genotype, and environmental factors using traditional experimental approaches. Using gene-centered databases, we have developed a network of complex diseases and environmental factors through the identification of key molecular pathways associated with both genetic and environmental contributions. Comparison with known chemical disease relationships and analysis of transcriptional regulation from gene expression datasets for several environmental factors and phenotypes clustered in a metabolic syndrome and neuropsychiatric subnetwork supports our network hypotheses. This analysis identifies natural and synthetic retinoids, antipsychotic medications, Omega 3 fatty acids, and pyrethroid pesticides as potential environmental modulators of metabolic syndrome phenotypes through PPAR and adipocytokine signaling and organophosphate pesticides as potential environmental modulators of neuropsychiatric phenotypes. Identification of key regulatory pathways that integrate genetic and environmental modulators define disease associated targets that will allow for efficient screening of large numbers of environmental factors, screening that could set priorities for further research and guide public health decisions.

  5. [Emerging infectious diseases: complex, unpredictable processes].

    PubMed

    Guégan, Jean-François

    2016-01-01

    In the light of a double approach, at first empirical, later theoretical and comparative, illustrated by the example of the Buruli ulcer and its mycobacterial agent Mycobacterium ulcerans on which I focused my research activity these last ten years by studying determinants and factors of emerging infectious or parasitic diseases, the complexity of events explaining emerging diseases will be presented. The cascade of events occurring at various levels of spatiotemporal scales and organization of life, which lead to the numerous observed emergences, nowadays requires better taking into account the interactions between host(s), pathogen(s) and the environment by including the behavior of both individuals and the population. In numerous research studies on emerging infectious diseases, microbial hazard is described rather than infectious disease risk, the latter resulting from the confrontation between an association of threatening phenomena, or hazards, and a susceptible population. Beyond, the theme of emerging infectious diseases and its links with global environmental and societal changes leads to reconsider some well-established knowledge in infectiology and parasitology. © Société de Biologie, 2017.

  6. Zebra mussels invade Lake Erie muds

    Berkman, Paul Arthur; Haltuch, Melissa A.; Tichich, Emily; Garton, David W.; Kennedy, Gregory W.; Gannon, John E.; Mackey, Scudder D.; Fuller, Jonathan A.; Liebenthal, Dale L.

    1998-01-01

    Zebra mussels (Dreissena polymorpha) originated in western Russia but have now become widespread in Europe and North America. They are widely known for their conspicuous invasion of rocks and other hard substrates in North American and European watersheds. We have found beds of zebra mussels directly colonizing sand and mud sediments each year across hundreds of square kilometres of North America's Lake Erie. This transformation of sedimentary habitats into mussel beds represents an unforeseen change in the invasive capacity of this species.

  7. Bridging epigenomics and complex disease: the basics.

    PubMed

    Teperino, Raffaele; Lempradl, Adelheid; Pospisilik, J Andrew

    2013-05-01

    The DNA sequence largely defines gene expression and phenotype. However, it is becoming increasingly clear that an additional chromatin-based regulatory network imparts both stability and plasticity to genome output, modifying phenotype independently of the genetic blueprint. Indeed, alterations in this "epigenetic" control layer underlie, at least in part, the reason for monozygotic twins being discordant for disease. Functionally, this regulatory layer comprises post-translational modifications of DNA and histones, as well as small and large noncoding RNAs. Together these regulate gene expression by changing chromatin organization and DNA accessibility. Successive technological advances over the past decade have enabled researchers to map the chromatin state with increasing accuracy and comprehensiveness, catapulting genetic research into a genome-wide era. Here, aiming particularly at the genomics/epigenomics newcomer, we review the epigenetic basis that has helped drive the technological shift and how this progress is shaping our understanding of complex disease.

  8. How the zebra got its stripes: a problem with too many solutions

    PubMed Central

    Larison, Brenda; Harrigan, Ryan J.; Thomassen, Henri A.; Rubenstein, Daniel I.; Chan-Golston, Alec M.; Li, Elizabeth; Smith, Thomas B.

    2015-01-01

    The adaptive significance of zebra stripes has thus far eluded understanding. Many explanations have been suggested, including social cohesion, thermoregulation, predation evasion and avoidance of biting flies. Identifying the associations between phenotypic and environmental factors is essential for testing these hypotheses and substantiating existing experimental evidence. Plains zebra striping pattern varies regionally, from heavy black and white striping over the entire body in some areas to reduced stripe coverage with thinner and lighter stripes in others. We examined how well 29 environmental variables predict the variation in stripe characteristics of plains zebra across their range in Africa. In contrast to recent findings, we found no evidence that striping may have evolved to escape predators or avoid biting flies. Instead, we found that temperature successfully predicts a substantial amount of the stripe pattern variation observed in plains zebra. As this association between striping and temperature may be indicative of multiple biological processes, we suggest that the selective agents driving zebra striping are probably multifarious and complex. PMID:26064590

  9. Zebra Stripes through the Eyes of Their Predators, Zebras, and Humans

    PubMed Central

    Melin, Amanda D.; Kline, Donald W.; Hiramatsu, Chihiro; Caro, Tim

    2016-01-01

    The century-old idea that stripes make zebras cryptic to large carnivores has never been examined systematically. We evaluated this hypothesis by passing digital images of zebras through species-specific spatial and colour filters to simulate their appearance for the visual systems of zebras’ primary predators and zebras themselves. We also measured stripe widths and luminance contrast to estimate the maximum distances from which lions, spotted hyaenas, and zebras can resolve stripes. We found that beyond ca. 50 m (daylight) and 30 m (twilight) zebra stripes are difficult for the estimated visual systems of large carnivores to resolve, but not humans. On moonless nights, stripes are difficult for all species to resolve beyond ca. 9 m. In open treeless habitats where zebras spend most time, zebras are as clearly identified by the lion visual system as are similar-sized ungulates, suggesting that stripes cannot confer crypsis by disrupting the zebra’s outline. Stripes confer a minor advantage over solid pelage in masking body shape in woodlands, but the effect is stronger for humans than for predators. Zebras appear to be less able than humans to resolve stripes although they are better than their chief predators. In conclusion, compared to the uniform pelage of other sympatric herbivores it appears highly unlikely that stripes are a form of anti-predator camouflage. PMID:26799935

  10. Acoustic fine structure may encode biologically relevant information for zebra finches.

    PubMed

    Prior, Nora H; Smith, Edward; Lawson, Shelby; Ball, Gregory F; Dooling, Robert J

    2018-04-18

    The ability to discriminate changes in the fine structure of complex sounds is well developed in birds. However, the precise limit of this discrimination ability and how it is used in the context of natural communication remains unclear. Here we describe natural variability in acoustic fine structure of male and female zebra finch calls. Results from psychoacoustic experiments demonstrate that zebra finches are able to discriminate extremely small differences in fine structure, which are on the order of the variation in acoustic fine structure that is present in their vocal signals. Results from signal analysis methods also suggest that acoustic fine structure may carry information that distinguishes between biologically relevant categories including sex, call type and individual identity. Combined, our results are consistent with the hypothesis that zebra finches can encode biologically relevant information within the fine structure of their calls. This study provides a foundation for our understanding of how acoustic fine structure may be involved in animal communication.

  11. Disease Surveillance on Complex Social Networks

    PubMed Central

    Herrera, Jose L.; Srinivasan, Ravi; Brownstein, John S.; Galvani, Alison P.; Meyers, Lauren Ancel

    2016-01-01

    As infectious disease surveillance systems expand to include digital, crowd-sourced, and social network data, public health agencies are gaining unprecedented access to high-resolution data and have an opportunity to selectively monitor informative individuals. Contact networks, which are the webs of interaction through which diseases spread, determine whether and when individuals become infected, and thus who might serve as early and accurate surveillance sensors. Here, we evaluate three strategies for selecting sensors—sampling the most connected, random, and friends of random individuals—in three complex social networks—a simple scale-free network, an empirical Venezuelan college student network, and an empirical Montreal wireless hotspot usage network. Across five different surveillance goals—early and accurate detection of epidemic emergence and peak, and general situational awareness—we find that the optimal choice of sensors depends on the public health goal, the underlying network and the reproduction number of the disease (R0). For diseases with a low R0, the most connected individuals provide the earliest and most accurate information about both the onset and peak of an outbreak. However, identifying network hubs is often impractical, and they can be misleading if monitored for general situational awareness, if the underlying network has significant community structure, or if R0 is high or unknown. Taking a theoretical approach, we also derive the optimal surveillance system for early outbreak detection but find that real-world identification of such sensors would be nearly impossible. By contrast, the friends-of-random strategy offers a more practical and robust alternative. It can be readily implemented without prior knowledge of the network, and by identifying sensors with higher than average, but not the highest, epidemiological risk, it provides reasonably early and accurate information. PMID:27415615

  12. Disease Surveillance on Complex Social Networks.

    PubMed

    Herrera, Jose L; Srinivasan, Ravi; Brownstein, John S; Galvani, Alison P; Meyers, Lauren Ancel

    2016-07-01

    As infectious disease surveillance systems expand to include digital, crowd-sourced, and social network data, public health agencies are gaining unprecedented access to high-resolution data and have an opportunity to selectively monitor informative individuals. Contact networks, which are the webs of interaction through which diseases spread, determine whether and when individuals become infected, and thus who might serve as early and accurate surveillance sensors. Here, we evaluate three strategies for selecting sensors-sampling the most connected, random, and friends of random individuals-in three complex social networks-a simple scale-free network, an empirical Venezuelan college student network, and an empirical Montreal wireless hotspot usage network. Across five different surveillance goals-early and accurate detection of epidemic emergence and peak, and general situational awareness-we find that the optimal choice of sensors depends on the public health goal, the underlying network and the reproduction number of the disease (R0). For diseases with a low R0, the most connected individuals provide the earliest and most accurate information about both the onset and peak of an outbreak. However, identifying network hubs is often impractical, and they can be misleading if monitored for general situational awareness, if the underlying network has significant community structure, or if R0 is high or unknown. Taking a theoretical approach, we also derive the optimal surveillance system for early outbreak detection but find that real-world identification of such sensors would be nearly impossible. By contrast, the friends-of-random strategy offers a more practical and robust alternative. It can be readily implemented without prior knowledge of the network, and by identifying sensors with higher than average, but not the highest, epidemiological risk, it provides reasonably early and accurate information.

  13. Consanguinity, human evolution, and complex diseases

    PubMed Central

    Bittles, A. H.; Black, M. L.

    2010-01-01

    There is little information on inbreeding during the critical early years of human existence. However, given the small founding group sizes and restricted mate choices it seems inevitable that intrafamilial reproduction occurred and the resultant levels of inbreeding would have been substantial. Currently, couples related as second cousins or closer (F ≥ 0.0156) and their progeny account for an estimated 10.4% of the global population. The highest rates of consanguineous marriage occur in north and sub-Saharan Africa, the Middle East, and west, central, and south Asia. In these regions even couples who regard themselves as unrelated may exhibit high levels of homozygosity, because marriage within clan, tribe, caste, or biraderi boundaries has been a long-established tradition. Mortality in first-cousin progeny is ≈3.5% higher than in nonconsanguineous offspring, although demographic, social, and economic factors can significantly influence the outcome. Improving socioeconomic conditions and better access to health care will impact the effects of consanguinity, with a shift from infant and childhood mortality to extended morbidity. At the same time, a range of primarily social factors, including urbanization, improved female education, and smaller family sizes indicate that the global prevalence of consanguineous unions will decline. This shift in marriage patterns will initially result in decreased homozygosity, accompanied by a reduction in the expression of recessive single-gene disorders. Although the roles of common and rare gene variants in the etiology of complex disease remain contentious, it would be expected that declining consanguinity would also be reflected in reduced prevalence of complex diseases, especially in population isolates. PMID:19805052

  14. [Fine mapping of complex disease susceptibility loci].

    PubMed

    Song, Qingfeng; Zhang, Hongxing; Ma, Yilong; Zhou, Gangqiao

    2014-01-01

    Genome-wide association studies (GWAS) using single nucleotide polymorphism (SNP) markers have identified more than 3800 susceptibility loci for more than 660 diseases or traits. However, the most significantly associated variants or causative variants in these loci and their biological functions have remained to be clarified. These causative variants can help to elucidate the pathogenesis and discover new biomarkers of complex diseases. One of the main goals in the post-GWAS era is to identify the causative variants and susceptibility genes, and clarify their functional aspects by fine mapping. For common variants, imputation or re-sequencing based strategies were implemented to increase the number of analyzed variants and help to identify the most significantly associated variants. In addition, functional element, expression quantitative trait locus (eQTL) and haplotype analyses were performed to identify functional common variants and susceptibility genes. For rare variants, fine mapping was carried out by re-sequencing, rare haplotype analysis, family-based analysis, burden test, etc.This review summarizes the strategies and problems for fine mapping.

  15. Examining the role of tuber biochemistry in the development of zebra chip in stored potato tubers

    Zebra chip disease (ZC), associated with infection by the bacterium ‘Candidatus Liberibacter solanacearum’ (Lso), is an emerging problem for potato growers in the United States, Mexico, and New Zealand. Although potato tubers exhibiting ZC symptoms will be rejected by processors, it remains possible...

  16. Zebra: A striped network file system

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Hartman, John H.; Ousterhout, John K.

    1992-01-01

    The design of Zebra, a striped network file system, is presented. Zebra applies ideas from log-structured file system (LFS) and RAID research to network file systems, resulting in a network file system that has scalable performance, uses its servers efficiently even when its applications are using small files, and provides high availability. Zebra stripes file data across multiple servers, so that the file transfer rate is not limited by the performance of a single server. High availability is achieved by maintaining parity information for the file system. If a server fails its contents can be reconstructed using the contents of the remaining servers and the parity information. Zebra differs from existing striped file systems in the way it stripes file data: Zebra does not stripe on a per-file basis; instead it stripes the stream of bytes written by each client. Clients write to the servers in units called stripe fragments, which are analogous to segments in an LFS. Stripe fragments contain file blocks that were written recently, without regard to which file they belong. This method of striping has numerous advantages over per-file striping, including increased server efficiency, efficient parity computation, and elimination of parity update.

  17. Digital gene expression analysis of the zebra finch genome

    PubMed Central

    2010-01-01

    Background In order to understand patterns of adaptation and molecular evolution it is important to quantify both variation in gene expression and nucleotide sequence divergence. Gene expression profiling in non-model organisms has recently been facilitated by the advent of massively parallel sequencing technology. Here we investigate tissue specific gene expression patterns in the zebra finch (Taeniopygia guttata) with special emphasis on the genes of the major histocompatibility complex (MHC). Results Almost 2 million 454-sequencing reads from cDNA of six different tissues were assembled and analysed. A total of 11,793 zebra finch transcripts were represented in this EST data, indicating a transcriptome coverage of about 65%. There was a positive correlation between the tissue specificity of gene expression and non-synonymous to synonymous nucleotide substitution ratio of genes, suggesting that genes with a specialised function are evolving at a higher rate (or with less constraint) than genes with a more general function. In line with this, there was also a negative correlation between overall expression levels and expression specificity of contigs. We found evidence for expression of 10 different genes related to the MHC. MHC genes showed relatively tissue specific expression levels and were in general primarily expressed in spleen. Several MHC genes, including MHC class I also showed expression in brain. Furthermore, for all genes with highest levels of expression in spleen there was an overrepresentation of several gene ontology terms related to immune function. Conclusions Our study highlights the usefulness of next-generation sequence data for quantifying gene expression in the genome as a whole as well as in specific candidate genes. Overall, the data show predicted patterns of gene expression profiles and molecular evolution in the zebra finch genome. Expression of MHC genes in particular, corresponds well with expression patterns in other vertebrates

  18. "Bird Song Metronomics": Isochronous Organization of Zebra Finch Song Rhythm.

    PubMed

    Norton, Philipp; Scharff, Constance

    2016-01-01

    The human capacity for speech and vocal music depends on vocal imitation. Songbirds, in contrast to non-human primates, share this vocal production learning with humans. The process through which birds and humans learn many of their vocalizations as well as the underlying neural system exhibit a number of striking parallels and have been widely researched. In contrast, rhythm, a key feature of language, and music, has received surprisingly little attention in songbirds. Investigating temporal periodicity in bird song has the potential to inform the relationship between neural mechanisms and behavioral output and can also provide insight into the biology and evolution of musicality. Here we present a method to analyze birdsong for an underlying rhythmic regularity. Using the intervals from one note onset to the next as input, we found for each bird an isochronous sequence of time stamps, a "signal-derived pulse," or pulse(S), of which a subset aligned with all note onsets of the bird's song. Fourier analysis corroborated these results. To determine whether this finding was just a byproduct of the duration of notes and intervals typical for zebra finches but not dependent on the individual duration of elements and the sequence in which they are sung, we compared natural songs to models of artificial songs. Note onsets of natural song deviated from the pulse(S) significantly less than those of artificial songs with randomized note and gap durations. Thus, male zebra finch song has the regularity required for a listener to extract a perceived pulse (pulse(P)), as yet untested. Strikingly, in our study, pulses(S) that best fit note onsets often also coincided with the transitions between sub-note elements within complex notes, corresponding to neuromuscular gestures. Gesture durations often equaled one or more pulse(S) periods. This suggests that gesture duration constitutes the basic element of the temporal hierarchy of zebra finch song rhythm, an interesting parallel

  19. Experimental evidence that stripes do not cool zebras.

    PubMed

    Horváth, Gábor; Pereszlényi, Ádám; Száz, Dénes; Barta, András; Jánosi, Imre M; Gerics, Balázs; Åkesson, Susanne

    2018-06-19

    There are as many as 18 theories for the possible functions of the stripes of zebras, one of which is to cool the animal. We performed field experiments and thermographic measurements to investigate whether thermoregulation might work for zebra-striped bodies. A zebra body was modelled by water-filled metal barrels covered with horse, cattle and zebra hides and with various black, white, grey and striped patterns. The barrels were installed in the open air for four months while their core temperature was measured continuously. Using thermography, the temperature distributions of the barrel surfaces were compared to those of living zebras. The sunlit zebra-striped barrels reproduced well the surface temperature characteristics of sunlit zebras. We found that there were no significant core temperature differences between the striped and grey barrels, even on many hot days, independent of the air temperature and wind speed. The average core temperature of the barrels increased as follows: white cattle, grey cattle, real zebra, artificial zebra, grey horse, black cattle. Consequently, we demonstrate that zebra-striped coats do not keep the body cooler than grey coats challenging the hypothesis of a thermoregulatory role of zebra stripes.

  20. Hypersensitivity pneumonitis: a complex lung disease.

    PubMed

    Riario Sforza, Gian Galeazzo; Marinou, Androula

    2017-01-01

    Hypersensitivity pneumonitis (HP), also called extrinsic allergic alveolitis, is a respiratory syndrome involving the lung parenchyma and specifically the alveoli, terminal bronchioli, and alveolar interstitium, due to a delayed allergic reaction. Such reaction is secondary to a repeated and prolonged inhalation of different types of organic dusts or other substances to which the patient is sensitized and hyper responsive, primarily consisting of organic dusts of animal or vegetable origin, more rarely from chemicals. The prevalence of HP is difficult to evaluate because of uncertainties in detection and misdiagnosis and lacking of widely accepted diagnostic criteria, and varies considerably depending on disease definition, diagnostic methods, exposure modalities, geographical conditions, agricultural and industrial practices, and host risk factors. HP can be caused by multiple agents that are present in work places and in the home, such as microbes, animal and plant proteins, organic and inorganic chemicals. The number of environment, settings and causative agents is increasing over time. From the clinical point of view HP can be divided in acute/subacute and chronic, depending on the intensity and frequency of exposure to causative antigens. The mainstay in managing HP is the avoidance of the causative antigen, though the complete removal is not always possible due to the difficulties to identify the agent or because its avoidance may lead to major changes in life style or occupational settings. HP is a complex syndrome that needs urgently for more stringent and selective diagnostic criteria and validation, including wider panels of IgG, and a closer collaboration with occupational physicians, as part of a multidisciplinary expertise.

  1. Complex Disease Endotypes and Implications for GWAS and Exposomics***

    EPA Science Inventory

    Presentation Type: Symposia Symposium Title: Human Exposome Discovery and Disease Investigation Abstract Title: Complex Disease Endotypes and Implications for GWAS and Exposomics Authors: Stephen W. Edwards1, David M. Reif, Elaine Cohen Hubaf, ClarLynda Williams-DeVa...

  2. Zebra: a web server for bioinformatic analysis of diverse protein families.

    PubMed

    Suplatov, Dmitry; Kirilin, Evgeny; Takhaveev, Vakil; Svedas, Vytas

    2014-01-01

    During evolution of proteins from a common ancestor, one functional property can be preserved while others can vary leading to functional diversity. A systematic study of the corresponding adaptive mutations provides a key to one of the most challenging problems of modern structural biology - understanding the impact of amino acid substitutions on protein function. The subfamily-specific positions (SSPs) are conserved within functional subfamilies but are different between them and, therefore, seem to be responsible for functional diversity in protein superfamilies. Consequently, a corresponding method to perform the bioinformatic analysis of sequence and structural data has to be implemented in the common laboratory practice to study the structure-function relationship in proteins and develop novel protein engineering strategies. This paper describes Zebra web server - a powerful remote platform that implements a novel bioinformatic analysis algorithm to study diverse protein families. It is the first application that provides specificity determinants at different levels of functional classification, therefore addressing complex functional diversity of large superfamilies. Statistical analysis is implemented to automatically select a set of highly significant SSPs to be used as hotspots for directed evolution or rational design experiments and analyzed studying the structure-function relationship. Zebra results are provided in two ways - (1) as a single all-in-one parsable text file and (2) as PyMol sessions with structural representation of SSPs. Zebra web server is available at http://biokinet.belozersky.msu.ru/zebra .

  3. Amyloidosis in a Captive Zebra Finch (Taeniopygia guttata) Research Colony

    PubMed Central

    Shientag, Lisa J; Garlick, David S; Galati, Erin

    2016-01-01

    Five birds in a captive zebra finch research colony were diagnosed with systemic amyloidosis within a 7-mo period by means of postmortem Congo red staining and green birefringence under polarized light. The liver was the most frequently and usually the most seriously affected organ, followed by the spleen and then the kidney. All 5 birds had been clinically affected with various inflammatory, infectious, and neoplastic conditions associated with amyloid A (AA) amyloidosis in humans and animals. Immunohistochemistry using antisera against duck AA protein revealed that tissues from 2 of the 5 birds were positive for the presence of AA protein and systemic inflammation-associated amyloidosis. Although the development of AA amyloidosis has been associated with chronic inflammation, trauma, and various infectious and neoplastic diseases as well as possible genetic predispositions and stresses linked to overcrowding, the root causes for individual cases of AA amyloidosis are incompletely understood. As far as we know, this report is the first description of AA amyloidosis in captive, research zebra finches. PMID:27298248

  4. Autoimmune Addison disease: pathophysiology and genetic complexity.

    PubMed

    Mitchell, Anna L; Pearce, Simon H S

    2012-01-31

    Autoimmune Addison disease is a rare autoimmune disorder with symptoms that typically develop over months or years. Following the development of serum autoantibodies to the key steroidogenic enzyme, 21-hydroxylase, patients have a period of compensated or preclinical disease, characterized by elevations in adrenocortocotropic hormone and renin, before overt, symptomatic adrenal failure develops. We propose that local failure of steroidogenesis, causing breakdown of tolerance to adrenal antigens, might be a key factor in disease progression. The etiology of autoimmune Addison disease has a strong genetic component in man, and several dog breeds are also susceptible. Allelic variants of genes encoding molecules of both the adaptive and innate immune systems have now been implicated, with a focus on the immunological synapse and downstream participants in T lymphocyte antigen-receptor signaling. With the exception of MHC alleles, which contribute to susceptibility in both human and canine Addison disease, no major or highly penetrant disease alleles have been found to date. Future research into autoimmune Addison disease, making use of genome-wide association studies and next-generation sequencing technology, will address the gaps in our understanding of the etiology of this disease.

  5. Is there a genetic solution to bovine respiratory disease complex?

    Bovine respiratory disease complex (BRDC) is a complex multi-factor disease, which increases costs and reduces revenue from feedlot cattle. Multiple stressors and pathogens (viral and bacterial) have been implicated in the etiology of BRDC, therefore multiple approaches will be needed to evaluate a...

  6. 9 CFR 381.82 - Diseases of the leukosis complex.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2012 CFR

    2012-01-01

    ... 9 Animals and Animal Products 2 2012-01-01 2012-01-01 false Diseases of the leukosis complex. 381.82 Section 381.82 Animals and Animal Products FOOD SAFETY AND INSPECTION SERVICE, DEPARTMENT OF... Carcasses and Parts § 381.82 Diseases of the leukosis complex. Carcasses of poultry affected with any one or...

  7. 9 CFR 381.82 - Diseases of the leukosis complex.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2013 CFR

    2013-01-01

    ... 9 Animals and Animal Products 2 2013-01-01 2013-01-01 false Diseases of the leukosis complex. 381.82 Section 381.82 Animals and Animal Products FOOD SAFETY AND INSPECTION SERVICE, DEPARTMENT OF... Carcasses and Parts § 381.82 Diseases of the leukosis complex. Carcasses of poultry affected with any one or...

  8. 9 CFR 381.82 - Diseases of the leukosis complex.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2014 CFR

    2014-01-01

    ... 9 Animals and Animal Products 2 2014-01-01 2014-01-01 false Diseases of the leukosis complex. 381.82 Section 381.82 Animals and Animal Products FOOD SAFETY AND INSPECTION SERVICE, DEPARTMENT OF... Carcasses and Parts § 381.82 Diseases of the leukosis complex. Carcasses of poultry affected with any one or...

  9. 9 CFR 381.82 - Diseases of the leukosis complex.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2011 CFR

    2011-01-01

    ... 9 Animals and Animal Products 2 2011-01-01 2011-01-01 false Diseases of the leukosis complex. 381.82 Section 381.82 Animals and Animal Products FOOD SAFETY AND INSPECTION SERVICE, DEPARTMENT OF... Carcasses and Parts § 381.82 Diseases of the leukosis complex. Carcasses of poultry affected with any one or...

  10. 9 CFR 381.82 - Diseases of the leukosis complex.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2010 CFR

    2010-01-01

    ... 9 Animals and Animal Products 2 2010-01-01 2010-01-01 false Diseases of the leukosis complex. 381.82 Section 381.82 Animals and Animal Products FOOD SAFETY AND INSPECTION SERVICE, DEPARTMENT OF... Carcasses and Parts § 381.82 Diseases of the leukosis complex. Carcasses of poultry affected with any one or...

  11. Surgical treatment of complex small bowel Crohn disease.

    PubMed

    Michelassi, Fabrizio; Sultan, Samuel

    2014-08-01

    The clinical presentations of Crohn disease of the small bowel vary from low to high complexity. Understanding the complexity of Crohn disease of the small bowel is important for the surgeon and the gastroenterologist caring for the patient and may be relevant for clinical research as a way to compare outcomes. Here, we present a categorization of complex small bowel Crohn disease and review its surgical treatment as a potential initial step toward the establishment of a definition of complex disease. The complexity of small bowel Crohn disease can be sorted into several categories: technical challenges, namely, fistulae, abscesses, bowel or ureteral obstruction, hemorrhage, cancer and thickened mesentery; extensive disease; the presence of short gut; a history of prolonged use of medications, particularly steroids, immunomodulators, and biological agents; and a high risk of recurrence. Although the principles of modern surgical treatment of Crohn disease have evolved to bowel conservation such as strictureplasty techniques and limited resection margins, such practices by themselves are often not sufficient for the management of complex small bowel Crohn disease. This manuscript reviews each category of complex small bowel Crohn disease, with special emphasis on appropriate surgical strategy.

  12. Mapping rare and common causal alleles for complex human diseases

    PubMed Central

    Raychaudhuri, Soumya

    2011-01-01

    Advances in genotyping and sequencing technologies have revolutionized the genetics of complex disease by locating rare and common variants that influence an individual’s risk for diseases, such as diabetes, cancers, and psychiatric disorders. However, to capitalize on this data for prevention and therapies requires the identification of causal alleles and a mechanistic understanding for how these variants contribute to the disease. After discussing the strategies currently used to map variants for complex diseases, this Primer explores how variants may be prioritized for follow-up functional studies and the challenges and approaches for assessing the contributions of rare and common variants to disease phenotypes. PMID:21962507

  13. Zebras and Biting Flies: Quantitative Analysis of Reflected Light from Zebra Coats in Their Natural Habitat

    PubMed Central

    Britten, Kenneth H.; Thatcher, Timothy D.; Caro, Tim

    2016-01-01

    Experimental and comparative evidence suggests that the striped coats of zebras deter biting fly attack, but the mechanisms by which flies fail to target black-and-white mammals are still opaque. Two hypotheses have been proposed: stripes might serve either to defeat polarotaxis or to obscure the form of the animal. To test these hypotheses, we systematically photographed free-living plains zebras in Africa. We found that black and white stripes both have moderate polarization signatures with a similar angle, though the degree (magnitude) of polarization in white stripes is lower. When we modeled the visibility of these signals from different distances, we found that polarization differences between stripes are invisible to flies more than 10 m away because they are averaged out by the flies’ low visual resolution. At any distance, however, a positively polarotactic insect would have a distinct signal to guide its visual approach to a zebra because we found that polarization of light reflecting from zebras is higher than from surrounding dry grasses. We also found that the stripes themselves are visible to flies at somewhat greater distances (up to 20 m) than the polarization contrast between stripes. Together, these observations support hypotheses in which zebra stripes defeat visually guided orienting behavior in flies by a mechanism independent of polarotaxis. PMID:27223616

  14. [Neuroimmunological diseases associated with VGKC complex antibodies].

    PubMed

    Watanabe, Osamu

    2013-05-01

    Antibodies to voltage-gated potassium channels(VGKC) were first identified by radioimmunoassay of radioisotope labeled alpha-dendrotoxin-VGKCs solubilized from rabbit brain. These antibodies were found only in a proportion of patients with acquired neuromyotonia (Isaacs' syndrome). VGKC antibodies were also detected in Morvan's syndrome and in a form of autoimmune limbic encephalitis. Recent studies indicated that the "VGKC" antibodies are mainly directed toward associated proteins(for example LGI-1, Caspr-2) that complex with the VGKCs themselves. The "VGKC" antibodies are now usually known as VGKC-complex antibodies. In general, LGI-1 antibodies are most common in limbic encephalitis with SIADH. Caspr-2 antibodies are present in the majority of patients with Morvan's syndrome. These patients develop combinations of CNS symptoms, autonomic dysfunction, and peripheral nerve hyperexcitability.

  15. Transformation of temporal sequences in the zebra finch auditory system

    PubMed Central

    Lim, Yoonseob; Lagoy, Ryan; Shinn-Cunningham, Barbara G; Gardner, Timothy J

    2016-01-01

    This study examines how temporally patterned stimuli are transformed as they propagate from primary to secondary zones in the thalamorecipient auditory pallium in zebra finches. Using a new class of synthetic click stimuli, we find a robust mapping from temporal sequences in the primary zone to distinct population vectors in secondary auditory areas. We tested whether songbirds could discriminate synthetic click sequences in an operant setup and found that a robust behavioral discrimination is present for click sequences composed of intervals ranging from 11 ms to 40 ms, but breaks down for stimuli composed of longer inter-click intervals. This work suggests that the analog of the songbird auditory cortex transforms temporal patterns to sequence-selective population responses or ‘spatial codes', and that these distinct population responses contribute to behavioral discrimination of temporally complex sounds. DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.7554/eLife.18205.001 PMID:27897971

  16. A Daily Oscillation in the Fundamental Frequency and Amplitude of Harmonic Syllables of Zebra Finch Song

    PubMed Central

    Wood, William E.; Osseward, Peter J.; Roseberry, Thomas K.; Perkel, David J.

    2013-01-01

    Complex motor skills are more difficult to perform at certain points in the day (for example, shortly after waking), but the daily trajectory of motor-skill error is more difficult to predict. By undertaking a quantitative analysis of the fundamental frequency (FF) and amplitude of hundreds of zebra finch syllables per animal per day, we find that zebra finch song follows a previously undescribed daily oscillation. The FF and amplitude of harmonic syllables rises across the morning, reaching a peak near mid-day, and then falls again in the late afternoon until sleep. This oscillation, although somewhat variable, is consistent across days and across animals and does not require serotonin, as animals with serotonergic lesions maintained daily oscillations. We hypothesize that this oscillation is driven by underlying physiological factors which could be shared with other taxa. Song production in zebra finches is a model system for studying complex learned behavior because of the ease of gathering comprehensive behavioral data and the tractability of the underlying neural circuitry. The daily oscillation that we describe promises to reveal new insights into how time of day affects the ability to accomplish a variety of complex learned motor skills. PMID:24312654

  17. Complexity theory in the management of communicable diseases.

    PubMed

    Simmons, Mike

    2003-06-01

    In nature, apparently complex behavioural patterns are the result of repetitive simple rules. Complexity science studies the application of these rules and looks for applications in society. Complexity management opportunities have developed from this science and are providing a revolutionary approach in the constantly changing workplace. This article discusses how complexity management techniques have already been applied to communicable disease management in Wales and suggests further developments. A similar approach is recommended to others in the field, while complexity management probably has wider applications in the NHS, not least in relation to the developing managed clinical networks.

  18. Characterizing zebra chip symptom severity and identifying spectral signatures associated with 'Candidatus Liberibacter solanacearum' infected potato tubers

    Zebra chip (ZC) is a disease of potatoes, which is associated with the bacteria ‘Candidatus Liberibacter solanacearum’ (Lso). Lso is transmitted by the potato psyllid, Bactericera cockerelli (Šulc) (Hemiptera: Triozidae). ZC reduces yield and quality, as it results in discoloration of the vascular ...

  19. Invasion of the Zebra Mussels: A Mock Trial Activity

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Beck, Judy A.; Czerniak, Charlene M.

    2005-01-01

    In this activity, students learn about the important topic of invasive species, specifically Zebra Mussels. Students role-play different characters in a real-life situation: the trial of the Zebra Mussel for unlawful disruption of the Great Lakes ecosystem. Students will also learn about jurisprudential inquiry by examining the trial process. This…

  20. The Effects of Zebra Mussels (Dreissena polymorpha) on the Foraging Success of Eurasian Perch (Perca fluviatilis) and Ruffe (Gymnocephalus cernuus)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dieterich, Axel; Mörtl, Martin; Eckmann, Reiner

    2004-07-01

    Complex habitat structures can influence the foraging success of fish. Competition for food between fish species can therefore depend on the competitors' abilities to cope with structural complexity. In laboratory experiments, we comparatively assessed effects of zebra mussels (Dreissena polymorpha Pall.) on the foraging success of Eurasian perch (Perca fluviatilis L.) and ruffe (Gymnocephalus cernuus (L.)). In single-species and mixed-species experiments, the fish were fed caddisfly larvae (Tinodes waeneri (L.)) over complex (mussel-covered stones) and less-complex (bare stones) substrates. With intraspecific competition, food consumption by perch and ruffe decreased significantly when the complex substrate was used. With interspecific competition, food consumption by perch and ruffe did not change with substrate complexity, but perch clearly out-competed ruffe on both substrates. Zebra mussel beds provide a refuge for macrozoobenthos against predation by ruffe and probably also by perch. (

  1. Comprehension of Complex Discourse in Different Stages of Huntington's Disease

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Saldert, Charlotta; Fors, Angelika; Stroberg, Sofia; Hartelius, Lena

    2010-01-01

    Background: Huntington's disease not only affects motor speech control, but also may have an impact on the ability to produce and understand language in communication. Aims: The ability to comprehend basic and complex discourse was investigated in three different stages of Huntington's disease. Methods & Procedures: In this experimental group…

  2. Inferring drug-disease associations based on known protein complexes.

    PubMed

    Yu, Liang; Huang, Jianbin; Ma, Zhixin; Zhang, Jing; Zou, Yapeng; Gao, Lin

    2015-01-01

    Inferring drug-disease associations is critical in unveiling disease mechanisms, as well as discovering novel functions of available drugs, or drug repositioning. Previous work is primarily based on drug-gene-disease relationship, which throws away many important information since genes execute their functions through interacting others. To overcome this issue, we propose a novel methodology that discover the drug-disease association based on protein complexes. Firstly, the integrated heterogeneous network consisting of drugs, protein complexes, and disease are constructed, where we assign weights to the drug-disease association by using probability. Then, from the tripartite network, we get the indirect weighted relationships between drugs and diseases. The larger the weight, the higher the reliability of the correlation. We apply our method to mental disorders and hypertension, and validate the result by using comparative toxicogenomics database. Our ranked results can be directly reinforced by existing biomedical literature, suggesting that our proposed method obtains higher specificity and sensitivity. The proposed method offers new insight into drug-disease discovery. Our method is publicly available at http://1.complexdrug.sinaapp.com/Drug_Complex_Disease/Data_Download.html.

  3. Inferring drug-disease associations based on known protein complexes

    PubMed Central

    2015-01-01

    Inferring drug-disease associations is critical in unveiling disease mechanisms, as well as discovering novel functions of available drugs, or drug repositioning. Previous work is primarily based on drug-gene-disease relationship, which throws away many important information since genes execute their functions through interacting others. To overcome this issue, we propose a novel methodology that discover the drug-disease association based on protein complexes. Firstly, the integrated heterogeneous network consisting of drugs, protein complexes, and disease are constructed, where we assign weights to the drug-disease association by using probability. Then, from the tripartite network, we get the indirect weighted relationships between drugs and diseases. The larger the weight, the higher the reliability of the correlation. We apply our method to mental disorders and hypertension, and validate the result by using comparative toxicogenomics database. Our ranked results can be directly reinforced by existing biomedical literature, suggesting that our proposed method obtains higher specificity and sensitivity. The proposed method offers new insight into drug-disease discovery. Our method is publicly available at http://1.complexdrug.sinaapp.com/Drug_Complex_Disease/Data_Download.html. PMID:26044949

  4. Complex disease and phenotype mapping in the domestic dog

    PubMed Central

    Hayward, Jessica J.; Castelhano, Marta G.; Oliveira, Kyle C.; Corey, Elizabeth; Balkman, Cheryl; Baxter, Tara L.; Casal, Margret L.; Center, Sharon A.; Fang, Meiying; Garrison, Susan J.; Kalla, Sara E.; Korniliev, Pavel; Kotlikoff, Michael I.; Moise, N. S.; Shannon, Laura M.; Simpson, Kenneth W.; Sutter, Nathan B.; Todhunter, Rory J.; Boyko, Adam R.

    2016-01-01

    The domestic dog is becoming an increasingly valuable model species in medical genetics, showing particular promise to advance our understanding of cancer and orthopaedic disease. Here we undertake the largest canine genome-wide association study to date, with a panel of over 4,200 dogs genotyped at 180,000 markers, to accelerate mapping efforts. For complex diseases, we identify loci significantly associated with hip dysplasia, elbow dysplasia, idiopathic epilepsy, lymphoma, mast cell tumour and granulomatous colitis; for morphological traits, we report three novel quantitative trait loci that influence body size and one that influences fur length and shedding. Using simulation studies, we show that modestly larger sample sizes and denser marker sets will be sufficient to identify most moderate- to large-effect complex disease loci. This proposed design will enable efficient mapping of canine complex diseases, most of which have human homologues, using far fewer samples than required in human studies. PMID:26795439

  5. [Epigenetics, interface between environment and genes: role in complex diseases].

    PubMed

    Scheen, A J; Junien, C

    2012-01-01

    Epigenetics is the study of heritable changes in gene expression or cellular phenotype caused by mechanisms other than changes in the underlying DNA sequence. Epigenetics is one of the major mechanisms explaining the "Developmental Origin of Health and Diseases" (DOHaD). Besides genetic background inherited from parents, which confers susceptibility to certain pathologies, epigenetic changes constitute the memory of previous events, either positive or negative, along the life cycle, including at the in utero stage. The later exposition to hostile environment may reveal such susceptibility, with the development of various pathologies, among them numerous chronic complex diseases. The demonstration of such a sequence of events has been shown for metabolic diseases as obesity, metabolic syndrome and type 2 diabetes, cardiovascular disease and cancer. In contrast to genetic predisposition, which is irreversible, epigenetic changes are potentially reversible, thus giving targets not only for prevention, but possibly also for the treatment of certain complex diseases.

  6. Understanding Parkinson Disease: A Complex and Multifaceted Illness.

    PubMed

    Gopalakrishna, Apoorva; Alexander, Sheila A

    2015-12-01

    Parkinson disease is an incredibly complex and multifaceted illness affecting millions of people in the United States. Parkinson disease is characterized by progressive dopaminergic neuronal dysfunction and loss, leading to debilitating motor, cognitive, and behavioral symptoms. Parkinson disease is an enigmatic illness that is still extensively researched today to search for a better understanding of the disease, develop therapeutic interventions to halt or slow progression of the disease, and optimize patient outcomes. This article aims to examine in detail the normal function of the basal ganglia and dopaminergic neurons in the central nervous system, the etiology and pathophysiology of Parkinson disease, related signs and symptoms, current treatment, and finally, the profound impact of understanding the disease on nursing care.

  7. Conceptual Foundations of Systems Biology Explaining Complex Cardiac Diseases.

    PubMed

    Louridas, George E; Lourida, Katerina G

    2017-02-21

    Systems biology is an important concept that connects molecular biology and genomics with computing science, mathematics and engineering. An endeavor is made in this paper to associate basic conceptual ideas of systems biology with clinical medicine. Complex cardiac diseases are clinical phenotypes generated by integration of genetic, molecular and environmental factors. Basic concepts of systems biology like network construction, modular thinking, biological constraints (downward biological direction) and emergence (upward biological direction) could be applied to clinical medicine. Especially, in the field of cardiology, these concepts can be used to explain complex clinical cardiac phenotypes like chronic heart failure and coronary artery disease. Cardiac diseases are biological complex entities which like other biological phenomena can be explained by a systems biology approach. The above powerful biological tools of systems biology can explain robustness growth and stability during disease process from modulation to phenotype. The purpose of the present review paper is to implement systems biology strategy and incorporate some conceptual issues raised by this approach into the clinical field of complex cardiac diseases. Cardiac disease process and progression can be addressed by the holistic realistic approach of systems biology in order to define in better terms earlier diagnosis and more effective therapy.

  8. Immune evasion by pathogens of bovine respiratory disease complex.

    PubMed

    Srikumaran, Subramaniam; Kelling, Clayton L; Ambagala, Aruna

    2007-12-01

    Bovine respiratory tract disease is a multi-factorial disease complex involving several viruses and bacteria. Viruses that play prominent roles in causing the bovine respiratory disease complex include bovine herpesvirus-1, bovine respiratory syncytial virus, bovine viral diarrhea virus and parinfluenza-3 virus. Bacteria that play prominent roles in this disease complex are Mannheimia haemolytica and Mycoplasma bovis. Other bacteria that infect the bovine respiratory tract of cattle are Histophilus (Haemophilus) somni and Pasteurella multocida. Frequently, severe respiratory tract disease in cattle is associated with concurrent infections of these pathogens. Like other pathogens, the viral and bacterial pathogens of this disease complex have co-evolved with their hosts over millions of years. As much as the hosts have diversified and fine-tuned the components of their immune system, the pathogens have also evolved diverse and sophisticated strategies to evade the host immune responses. These pathogens have developed intricate mechanisms to thwart both the innate and adaptive arms of the immune responses of their hosts. This review presents an overview of the strategies by which the pathogens suppress host immune responses, as well as the strategies by which the pathogens modify themselves or their locations in the host to evade host immune responses. These immune evasion strategies likely contribute to the failure of currently-available vaccines to provide complete protection to cattle against these pathogens.

  9. Environmentally Safe Control of Zebra Mussel Fouling

    SciT

    Daniel Molloy

    2008-02-29

    The two primary objectives of this USDOE-NETL contract were successfully achieved during the project: (1) to accelerate research on the development of the bacterium Pseudomonas fluorescens strain CL145A (Pf-CL145A) as a biocontrol agent for zebra mussels (Dreissena polymorpha) and quagga mussels (Dreissena rostriformis bugensis)--two invasive freshwater bivalve species that are infesting water pipes in power plants; and (2) to identify a private-sector company that would move forward to commercialize Pf-CL145A as a substitute for the current polluting use of biocide chemicals for control of these dreissenid mussels in power plant pipes.

  10. Role of the Retromer Complex in Neurodegenerative Diseases

    PubMed Central

    Li, Chaosi; Shah, Syed Zahid Ali; Zhao, Deming; Yang, Lifeng

    2016-01-01

    The retromer complex is a protein complex that plays a central role in endosomal trafficking. Retromer dysfunction has been linked to a growing number of neurological disorders. The process of intracellular trafficking and recycling is crucial for maintaining normal intracellular homeostasis, which is partly achieved through the activity of the retromer complex. The retromer complex plays a primary role in sorting endosomal cargo back to the cell surface for reuse, to the trans-Golgi network (TGN), or alternatively to specialized endomembrane compartments, in which the cargo is not subjected to lysosomal-mediated degradation. In most cases, the retromer acts as a core that interacts with associated proteins, including sorting nexin family member 27 (SNX27), members of the vacuolar protein sorting 10 (VPS10) receptor family, the major endosomal actin polymerization-promoting complex known as Wiskott-Aldrich syndrome protein and scar homolog (WASH), and other proteins. Some of the molecules carried by the retromer complex are risk factors for neurodegenerative diseases. Defects such as haplo-insufficiency or mutations in one or several units of the retromer complex lead to various pathologies. Here, we summarize the molecular architecture of the retromer complex and the roles of this system in intracellular trafficking related the pathogenesis of neurodegenerative diseases. PMID:26973516

  11. A novel method for identifying disease associated protein complexes based on functional similarity protein complex networks.

    PubMed

    Le, Duc-Hau

    2015-01-01

    Protein complexes formed by non-covalent interaction among proteins play important roles in cellular functions. Computational and purification methods have been used to identify many protein complexes and their cellular functions. However, their roles in terms of causing disease have not been well discovered yet. There exist only a few studies for the identification of disease-associated protein complexes. However, they mostly utilize complicated heterogeneous networks which are constructed based on an out-of-date database of phenotype similarity network collected from literature. In addition, they only apply for diseases for which tissue-specific data exist. In this study, we propose a method to identify novel disease-protein complex associations. First, we introduce a framework to construct functional similarity protein complex networks where two protein complexes are functionally connected by either shared protein elements, shared annotating GO terms or based on protein interactions between elements in each protein complex. Second, we propose a simple but effective neighborhood-based algorithm, which yields a local similarity measure, to rank disease candidate protein complexes. Comparing the predictive performance of our proposed algorithm with that of two state-of-the-art network propagation algorithms including one we used in our previous study, we found that it performed statistically significantly better than that of these two algorithms for all the constructed functional similarity protein complex networks. In addition, it ran about 32 times faster than these two algorithms. Moreover, our proposed method always achieved high performance in terms of AUC values irrespective of the ways to construct the functional similarity protein complex networks and the used algorithms. The performance of our method was also higher than that reported in some existing methods which were based on complicated heterogeneous networks. Finally, we also tested our method with

  12. Gene-disease network analysis reveals functional modules in mendelian, complex and environmental diseases.

    PubMed

    Bauer-Mehren, Anna; Bundschus, Markus; Rautschka, Michael; Mayer, Miguel A; Sanz, Ferran; Furlong, Laura I

    2011-01-01

    Scientists have been trying to understand the molecular mechanisms of diseases to design preventive and therapeutic strategies for a long time. For some diseases, it has become evident that it is not enough to obtain a catalogue of the disease-related genes but to uncover how disruptions of molecular networks in the cell give rise to disease phenotypes. Moreover, with the unprecedented wealth of information available, even obtaining such catalogue is extremely difficult. We developed a comprehensive gene-disease association database by integrating associations from several sources that cover different biomedical aspects of diseases. In particular, we focus on the current knowledge of human genetic diseases including mendelian, complex and environmental diseases. To assess the concept of modularity of human diseases, we performed a systematic study of the emergent properties of human gene-disease networks by means of network topology and functional annotation analysis. The results indicate a highly shared genetic origin of human diseases and show that for most diseases, including mendelian, complex and environmental diseases, functional modules exist. Moreover, a core set of biological pathways is found to be associated with most human diseases. We obtained similar results when studying clusters of diseases, suggesting that related diseases might arise due to dysfunction of common biological processes in the cell. For the first time, we include mendelian, complex and environmental diseases in an integrated gene-disease association database and show that the concept of modularity applies for all of them. We furthermore provide a functional analysis of disease-related modules providing important new biological insights, which might not be discovered when considering each of the gene-disease association repositories independently. Hence, we present a suitable framework for the study of how genetic and environmental factors, such as drugs, contribute to diseases. The

  13. Protein-protein interaction networks (PPI) and complex diseases

    PubMed Central

    Safari-Alighiarloo, Nahid; Taghizadeh, Mohammad; Rezaei-Tavirani, Mostafa; Goliaei, Bahram

    2014-01-01

    The physical interaction of proteins which lead to compiling them into large densely connected networks is a noticeable subject to investigation. Protein interaction networks are useful because of making basic scientific abstraction and improving biological and biomedical applications. Based on principle roles of proteins in biological function, their interactions determine molecular and cellular mechanisms, which control healthy and diseased states in organisms. Therefore, such networks facilitate the understanding of pathogenic (and physiologic) mechanisms that trigger the onset and progression of diseases. Consequently, this knowledge can be translated into effective diagnostic and therapeutic strategies. Furthermore, the results of several studies have proved that the structure and dynamics of protein networks are disturbed in complex diseases such as cancer and autoimmune disorders. Based on such relationship, a novel paradigm is suggested in order to confirm that the protein interaction networks can be the target of therapy for treatment of complex multi-genic diseases rather than individual molecules with disrespect the network. PMID:25436094

  14. Complex social contagion makes networks more vulnerable to disease outbreaks.

    PubMed

    Campbell, Ellsworth; Salathé, Marcel

    2013-01-01

    Social network analysis is now widely used to investigate the dynamics of infectious disease spread. Vaccination dramatically disrupts disease transmission on a contact network, and indeed, high vaccination rates can potentially halt disease transmission altogether. Here, we build on mounting evidence that health behaviors - such as vaccination, and refusal thereof - can spread across social networks through a process of complex contagion that requires social reinforcement. Using network simulations that model health behavior and infectious disease spread, we find that under otherwise identical conditions, the process by which the health behavior spreads has a very strong effect on disease outbreak dynamics. This dynamic variability results from differences in the topology within susceptible communities that arise during the health behavior spreading process, which in turn depends on the topology of the overall social network. Our findings point to the importance of health behavior spread in predicting and controlling disease outbreaks.

  15. Coupled disease-behavior dynamics on complex networks: A review.

    PubMed

    Wang, Zhen; Andrews, Michael A; Wu, Zhi-Xi; Wang, Lin; Bauch, Chris T

    2015-12-01

    It is increasingly recognized that a key component of successful infection control efforts is understanding the complex, two-way interaction between disease dynamics and human behavioral and social dynamics. Human behavior such as contact precautions and social distancing clearly influence disease prevalence, but disease prevalence can in turn alter human behavior, forming a coupled, nonlinear system. Moreover, in many cases, the spatial structure of the population cannot be ignored, such that social and behavioral processes and/or transmission of infection must be represented with complex networks. Research on studying coupled disease-behavior dynamics in complex networks in particular is growing rapidly, and frequently makes use of analysis methods and concepts from statistical physics. Here, we review some of the growing literature in this area. We contrast network-based approaches to homogeneous-mixing approaches, point out how their predictions differ, and describe the rich and often surprising behavior of disease-behavior dynamics on complex networks, and compare them to processes in statistical physics. We discuss how these models can capture the dynamics that characterize many real-world scenarios, thereby suggesting ways that policy makers can better design effective prevention strategies. We also describe the growing sources of digital data that are facilitating research in this area. Finally, we suggest pitfalls which might be faced by researchers in the field, and we suggest several ways in which the field could move forward in the coming years. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  16. Can Data Repositories Help Find Effective Treatments for Complex Diseases?

    PubMed Central

    Farber, Gregory K.

    2016-01-01

    There are many challenges to developing treatments for complex diseases. This review explores the question of whether it is possible to imagine a data repository that would increase the pace of understanding complex diseases sufficiently well to facilitate the development of effective treatments. First, consideration is given to the amount of data that might be needed for such a data repository and whether the existing data storage infrastructure is enough. Several successful data repositories are then examined to see if they have common characteristics. An area of science where unsuccessful attempts to develop a data infrastructure is then described to see what lessons could be learned for a data repository devoted to complex disease. Then, a variety of issues related to sharing data are discussed. In some of these areas, it is reasonably clear how to move forward. In other areas, there are significant open questions that need to be addressed by all data repositories. Using that baseline information, the question of whether data archives can be effective in understanding a complex disease is explored. The major goal of such a data archive is likely to be identifying biomarkers that define sub-populations of the disease. PMID:27018167

  17. Can data repositories help find effective treatments for complex diseases?

    PubMed

    Farber, Gregory K

    2017-05-01

    There are many challenges to developing treatments for complex diseases. This review explores the question of whether it is possible to imagine a data repository that would increase the pace of understanding complex diseases sufficiently well to facilitate the development of effective treatments. First, consideration is given to the amount of data that might be needed for such a data repository and whether the existing data storage infrastructure is enough. Several successful data repositories are then examined to see if they have common characteristics. An area of science where unsuccessful attempts to develop a data infrastructure is then described to see what lessons could be learned for a data repository devoted to complex disease. Then, a variety of issues related to sharing data are discussed. In some of these areas, it is reasonably clear how to move forward. In other areas, there are significant open questions that need to be addressed by all data repositories. Using that baseline information, the question of whether data archives can be effective in understanding a complex disease is explored. The major goal of such a data archive is likely to be identifying biomarkers that define sub-populations of the disease. Published by Elsevier Ltd.

  18. Coupled disease-behavior dynamics on complex networks: A review

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wang, Zhen; Andrews, Michael A.; Wu, Zhi-Xi; Wang, Lin; Bauch, Chris T.

    2015-12-01

    It is increasingly recognized that a key component of successful infection control efforts is understanding the complex, two-way interaction between disease dynamics and human behavioral and social dynamics. Human behavior such as contact precautions and social distancing clearly influence disease prevalence, but disease prevalence can in turn alter human behavior, forming a coupled, nonlinear system. Moreover, in many cases, the spatial structure of the population cannot be ignored, such that social and behavioral processes and/or transmission of infection must be represented with complex networks. Research on studying coupled disease-behavior dynamics in complex networks in particular is growing rapidly, and frequently makes use of analysis methods and concepts from statistical physics. Here, we review some of the growing literature in this area. We contrast network-based approaches to homogeneous-mixing approaches, point out how their predictions differ, and describe the rich and often surprising behavior of disease-behavior dynamics on complex networks, and compare them to processes in statistical physics. We discuss how these models can capture the dynamics that characterize many real-world scenarios, thereby suggesting ways that policy makers can better design effective prevention strategies. We also describe the growing sources of digital data that are facilitating research in this area. Finally, we suggest pitfalls which might be faced by researchers in the field, and we suggest several ways in which the field could move forward in the coming years.

  19. Periodontal disease associated with red complex bacteria in dogs.

    PubMed

    Di Bello, A; Buonavoglia, A; Franchini, D; Valastro, C; Ventrella, G; Greco, M F; Corrente, M

    2014-03-01

    Red complex bacteria (Treponema denticola, Tannerella forsythia and Porphyromonas gingivalis) play a major role in the aetiology of periodontal disease in humans. This study was designed to evaluate the association of such bacteria with periodontal disease in dogs. Seventy-three subgingival samples taken from dogs ranging from 2 months to 12 years (median age 4 years) were tested for red complex bacteria using a polymerase chain reaction assay. Thirty-six of 73 (49 · 3%) dogs were found to be positive for T. forsythia and P. gingivalis. Dogs with gingivitis or periodontitis were more likely to be infected with T. forsythia and P. gingivalis [odds ratio (OR) 5 · 4 (confidence interval (CI) 1 · 9-15 · 6), P = 0 · 002] than healthy animals. Only 3 (4 · 1%) of 73 samples were positive for red complex bacteria, but the association with periodontal disease was not significant. The results indicate that involvement of red complex bacteria in periodontal disease in dogs is similar to that observed in humans. Only the concurrent presence of T. forsythia and P. gingivalis were correlated to periodontal disease in dogs in this study. © 2014 British Small Animal Veterinary Association.

  20. Zebra mussel infestation of unionid bivalves (Unionidae) in North America

    Schloesser, Don W.; Nalepa, Thomas F.; Mackie, Gerald L.

    1996-01-01

    In 1989, zebra mussels received national attention in North America when they reached densities exceeding 750,000/m2 in a water withdrawal facility along the shore of western Lake Erie of the Laurentian Great Lakes. Although water withdrawal problems caused by zebra mussels have been of immediate concern, ecological impacts attributed to mussels are likely to be the more important long-term issue for surface waters in North America. To date, the epizoic colonization (i.e., infestation) of unionid bivalve mollusks by zebra mussels has caused the most direct and severe ecological impact. Infestation of and resulting impacts caused by zebra mussels on unionids in the Great Lakes began in 1988. By 1990, mortality of unionids was occurring at some locations; by 1991, extant populations of unionids in western Lake Erie were nearly extirpated; by 1992, unionid populations in the southern half of Lake St. Clair were extirpated; by 1993, unionids in widely separated geographic areas of the Great Lakes and the Mississippi River showed high mortality due to mussel infestation. All infested unionid species in the Great Lakes (23) have become infested and exhibited mortality within two to four years after heavy infestation began. Data indicate that mean zebra mussel densities >5,000–6,000/m2 and infestation intensities >100-200/unionid in the presence of heavy zebra mussel recruitment results in near total mortality of unionids. At present, all unionid species in rivers, streams, and akes that sympatrically occur with zebra mussels have been infested and, in many locations, negatively impacted by zebra mussels. We do not know the potential consequences of infestation on the 297 unionid species found in North America, but believe zebra mussels pose an immediate threat to the abundance and diversity of unionids.

  1. Noninvasive diffusive optical imaging of the auditory response to birdsong in the zebra finch

    PubMed Central

    Lee, James V.; Maclin, Edward L.; Low, Kathy A.; Gratton, Gabriele; Fabiani, Monica; Clayton, David F.

    2013-01-01

    Songbirds communicate by learned vocalizations with concomitant changes in neurophysiological and genomic activities in discrete parts of the brain. Here we tested a novel implementation of diffusive optical imaging (also known as diffuse optical imaging, DOI) for monitoring brain physiology associated with vocal signal perception. DOI noninvasively measures brain activity using red and near-infrared light delivered through optic fibers (optodes) resting on the scalp. DOI does not harm subjects, so it raises the possibility of repeatedly measuring brain activity and the effects of accumulated experience in the same subject over an entire life span, all while leaving tissue intact for further study. We developed a custom-made apparatus for interfacing optodes to the zebra finch (Taeniopygia guttata) head using 3D modeling software and rapid prototyping technology, and applied it to record responses to presentations of birdsong in isoflurane-anesthetized zebra finches. We discovered a subtle but significant difference between the hemoglobin spectra of zebra finches and mammals which has a major impact in how hemodynamic responses are interpreted in the zebra finch. Our measured responses to birdsong playback were robust, highly repeatable, and readily observed in single trials. Responses were complex in shape and closely paralleled responses described in mammals. They were localized to the caudal medial portion of the brain, consistent with response localization from prior gene expression, electrophysiological, and functional magnetic resonance imaging studies. These results define an approach for collecting neurophysiological data from songbirds that should be applicable to diverse species and adaptable for studies in awake behaving animals. PMID:23322445

  2. Crayfish (Orconectes virilis) predation on zebra mussels (Dreissena polymorpha)

    Love, Joy; Savino, Jacqueline F.

    1993-01-01

    In laboratory studies, we quantified predation rates and handling time of crayfish (Orconectes virilis) on zebra mussels (Dreissena polymorpha) and rainbow trout (Oncorhhynchus mykiss) eggs. In single prey species tests, crayfish ate zebra mussels at similar rates as they ate rainbow trout eggs. When both prey were present, crayfish preferred rainbow trout eggs. Handling time of mussels was about twice that of rainbow trout eggs, and energetic content of mussels was lower. Therefore, net benefit for foraging on rainbow trout eggs was about three times that of foraging on zebra mussels.

  3. Locally extensive meningoencephalitis caused by Miamiensis avidus (syn. Philasterides dicentrarchi) in a zebra shark.

    PubMed

    Li, Wen-Ta; Lo, Chieh; Su, Chen-Yi; Kuo, Hsuan; Lin, Susanne Je-Han; Chang, Hui-Wei; Pang, Victor Fei; Jeng, Chian-Ren

    2017-10-18

    Scuticociliatosis, caused by ciliated protozoa in the subclass Scuticociliatia of the phylum Ciliophora, can cause fatal disease in teleost fish species. However, information on scuticociliatosis in elasmobranchs is still scarce. In this report, we describe a case of locally extensive meningoencephalitis caused by Miamiensis avidus (syn. Philasterides dicentrarchi) in a 2 yr old captive zebra shark Stegostoma fasciatum. Granulocytic meningoencephalitis was observed through histological assessment. Inflammation was confined to the ventral aspect of the brain with a large number of ciliated protozoa, transforming into non-suppurative meningitis in the lateral aspect, and gradually vanished in the dorsal aspect. No histopathological and polymerase chain reaction (PCR) evidence of systemic dissemination of M. avidus was found. PCR targeting the gene coding the small-subunit ribosomal RNA (SSUrRNA) of M. avidus was performed on the brain, liver, and gill tissues, and only brain tissue yielded a positive result. The DNA sequences from amplicons of the protozoal SSUrRNA gene were completely matched to that of M. avidus. The distribution of protozoa in the current case was mainly located in the brain and suggests the possibility of a direct neural invasive pathway of M. avidus through the nasal cavity/ampullary system and/or a unique tissue tropism of M. avidus specific to the brain in zebra sharks. Further investigations on the pathogenesis of M. avidus in elasmobranchs, especially zebra sharks, are needed.

  4. Zebra Alphaherpesviruses (EHV-1 and EHV-9): Genetic Diversity, Latency and Co-Infections.

    PubMed

    Abdelgawad, Azza; Damiani, Armando; Ho, Simon Y W; Strauss, Günter; Szentiks, Claudia A; East, Marion L; Osterrieder, Nikolaus; Greenwood, Alex D

    2016-09-20

    Alphaherpesviruses are highly prevalent in equine populations and co-infections with more than one of these viruses' strains frequently diagnosed. Lytic replication and latency with subsequent reactivation, along with new episodes of disease, can be influenced by genetic diversity generated by spontaneous mutation and recombination. Latency enhances virus survival by providing an epidemiological strategy for long-term maintenance of divergent strains in animal populations. The alphaherpesviruses equine herpesvirus 1 (EHV-1) and 9 (EHV-9) have recently been shown to cross species barriers, including a recombinant EHV-1 observed in fatal infections of a polar bear and Asian rhinoceros. Little is known about the latency and genetic diversity of EHV-1 and EHV-9, especially among zoo and wild equids. Here, we report evidence of limited genetic diversity in EHV-9 in zebras, whereas there is substantial genetic variability in EHV-1. We demonstrate that zebras can be lytically and latently infected with both viruses concurrently. Such a co-occurrence of infection in zebras suggests that even relatively slow-evolving viruses such as equine herpesviruses have the potential to diversify rapidly by recombination. This has potential consequences for the diagnosis of these viruses and their management in wild and captive equid populations.

  5. The operative management of children with complex perianal Crohn's disease.

    PubMed

    Seemann, Natashia M; King, Sebastian K; Elkadri, Abdul; Walters, Thomas; Fish, Joel; Langer, Jacob C

    2016-12-01

    Perianal Crohn's disease (PCD) can affect both quality of life and psychological wellbeing. A subset of pediatric patients with complex PCD require surgical intervention, although appropriate timing and treatment regimens remain unclear. This study aimed to describe a large pediatric cohort in a tertiary center to determine the range of surgical management in children with complex PCD. A retrospective review of children requiring operative intervention for PCD over 13 years (2002-2014) was performed. PCD was divided into simple and complex based on the type of surgical procedure, and the two groups were compared. The 57 children were divided into two groups: the simple group (N=43) underwent abscess drainage ± seton insertion alone, and the complex group (N=14) underwent loop ileostomy ± more extensive surgery. In the complex group, females were more predominant (57% of complex vs 30% of simple), and the average age at diagnosis was lower. Anti-TNF therapy was utilized in 79.1% of simple and 100% of complex PCD. All 14 complex patients underwent a defunctioning ileostomy, with 7 requiring further operations (subtotal colectomy=4, proctocolectomy ± anal sparing=5, plastic surgery reconstruction with perineal flap/graft=4). Complex PCD represents a small but challenging subset of patients in which major surgical intervention may be necessary to alleviate the symptoms of this debilitating condition. retrospective case study with no control group - level IV. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  6. A complex case of congenital cystic renal disease

    PubMed Central

    Cordiner, David S; Evans, Clair A; Brundler, Marie-Anne; McPhillips, Maeve; Murio, Enric; Darling, Mark; Taheri, Sepideh

    2012-01-01

    This case outlines the potential complexity of autosomal recessive polycystic kidney disease (ARPKD). It highlights the challenges involved in managing this condition, some of the complications faced and areas of uncertainty in the decision making process. With a paucity of published paediatric cases on this subject, this should add to the pool of information currently available. PMID:22605879

  7. Unlocking Proteomic Heterogeneity in Complex Diseases through Visual Analytics

    PubMed Central

    Bhavnani, Suresh K.; Dang, Bryant; Bellala, Gowtham; Divekar, Rohit; Visweswaran, Shyam; Brasier, Allan; Kurosky, Alex

    2015-01-01

    Despite years of preclinical development, biological interventions designed to treat complex diseases like asthma often fail in phase III clinical trials. These failures suggest that current methods to analyze biomedical data might be missing critical aspects of biological complexity such as the assumption that cases and controls come from homogeneous distributions. Here we discuss why and how methods from the rapidly evolving field of visual analytics can help translational teams (consisting of biologists, clinicians, and bioinformaticians) to address the challenge of modeling and inferring heterogeneity in the proteomic and phenotypic profiles of patients with complex diseases. Because a primary goal of visual analytics is to amplify the cognitive capacities of humans for detecting patterns in complex data, we begin with an overview of the cognitive foundations for the field of visual analytics. Next, we organize the primary ways in which a specific form of visual analytics called networks have been used to model and infer biological mechanisms, which help to identify the properties of networks that are particularly useful for the discovery and analysis of proteomic heterogeneity in complex diseases. We describe one such approach called subject-protein networks, and demonstrate its application on two proteomic datasets. This demonstration provides insights to help translational teams overcome theoretical, practical, and pedagogical hurdles for the widespread use of subject-protein networks for analyzing molecular heterogeneities, with the translational goal of designing biomarker-based clinical trials, and accelerating the development of personalized approaches to medicine. PMID:25684269

  8. Epigenetics and migraine; complex mitochondrial interactions contributing to disease susceptibility.

    PubMed

    Roos-Araujo, Deidré; Stuart, Shani; Lea, Rod A; Haupt, Larisa M; Griffiths, Lyn R

    2014-06-10

    Migraine is a common neurological disorder classified by the World Health Organisation (WHO) as one of the top twenty most debilitating diseases in the developed world. Current therapies are only effective for a proportion of sufferers and new therapeutic targets are desperately needed to alleviate this burden. Recently the role of epigenetics in the development of many complex diseases including migraine has become an emerging topic. By understanding the importance of acetylation, methylation and other epigenetic modifications, it then follows that this modification process is a potential target to manipulate epigenetic status with the goal of treating disease. Bisulphite sequencing and methylated DNA immunoprecipitation have been used to demonstrate the presence of methylated cytosines in the human D-loop of mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA), proving that the mitochondrial genome is methylated. For the first time, it has been shown that there is a difference in mtDNA epigenetic status between healthy controls and those with disease, especially for neurodegenerative and age related conditions. Given co-morbidities with migraine and the suggestive link between mitochondrial dysfunction and the lowered threshold for triggering a migraine attack, mitochondrial methylation may be a new avenue to pursue. Creative thinking and new approaches are needed to solve complex problems and a systems biology approach, where multiple layers of information are integrated is becoming more important in complex disease modelling. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  9. Using Full Genomic Information to Predict Disease: Breaking Down the Barriers Between Complex and Mendelian Diseases.

    PubMed

    Jordan, Daniel M; Do, Ron

    2018-04-11

    While sequence-based genetic tests have long been available for specific loci, especially for Mendelian disease, the rapidly falling costs of genome-wide genotyping arrays, whole-exome sequencing, and whole-genome sequencing are moving us toward a future where full genomic information might inform the prognosis and treatment of a variety of diseases, including complex disease. Similarly, the availability of large populations with full genomic information has enabled new insights about the etiology and genetic architecture of complex disease. Insights from the latest generation of genomic studies suggest that our categorization of diseases as complex may conceal a wide spectrum of genetic architectures and causal mechanisms that ranges from Mendelian forms of complex disease to complex regulatory structures underlying Mendelian disease. Here, we review these insights, along with advances in the prediction of disease risk and outcomes from full genomic information. Expected final online publication date for the Annual Review of Genomics and Human Genetics Volume 19 is August 31, 2018. Please see http://www.annualreviews.org/page/journal/pubdates for revised estimates.

  10. Mediator complex dependent regulation of cardiac development and disease.

    PubMed

    Grueter, Chad E

    2013-06-01

    Cardiovascular disease (CVD) is a leading cause of morbidity and mortality. The risk factors for CVD include environmental and genetic components. Human mutations in genes involved in most aspects of cardiovascular function have been identified, many of which are involved in transcriptional regulation. The Mediator complex serves as a pivotal transcriptional regulator that functions to integrate diverse cellular signals by multiple mechanisms including recruiting RNA polymerase II, chromatin modifying proteins and non-coding RNAs to promoters in a context dependent manner. This review discusses components of the Mediator complex and the contribution of the Mediator complex to normal and pathological cardiac development and function. Enhanced understanding of the role of this core transcriptional regulatory complex in the heart will help us gain further insights into CVD. Copyright © 2013. Production and hosting by Elsevier Ltd.

  11. STRIPAK complexes: structure, biological function, and involvement in human diseases.

    PubMed

    Hwang, Juyeon; Pallas, David C

    2014-02-01

    The mammalian striatin family consists of three proteins, striatin, S/G2 nuclear autoantigen, and zinedin. Striatin family members have no intrinsic catalytic activity, but rather function as scaffolding proteins. Remarkably, they organize multiple diverse, large signaling complexes that participate in a variety of cellular processes. Moreover, they appear to be regulatory/targeting subunits for the major eukaryotic serine/threonine protein phosphatase 2A. In addition, striatin family members associate with germinal center kinase III kinases as well as other novel components, earning these assemblies the name striatin-interacting phosphatase and kinase (STRIPAK) complexes. Recently, there has been a great increase in functional and mechanistic studies aimed at identifying and understanding the roles of STRIPAK and STRIPAK-like complexes in cellular processes of multiple organisms. These studies have identified novel STRIPAK and STRIPAK-like complexes and have explored their roles in specific signaling pathways. Together, the results of these studies have sparked increased interest in striatin family complexes because they have revealed roles in signaling, cell cycle control, apoptosis, vesicular trafficking, Golgi assembly, cell polarity, cell migration, neural and vascular development, and cardiac function. Moreover, STRIPAK complexes have been connected to clinical conditions, including cardiac disease, diabetes, autism, and cerebral cavernous malformation. In this review, we discuss the expression, localization, and protein domain structure of striatin family members. Then we consider the diverse complexes these proteins and their homologs form in various organisms, emphasizing what is known regarding function and regulation. Finally, we explore possible roles of striatin family complexes in disease, especially cerebral cavernous malformation. Copyright © 2013 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  12. Control Strategies for Zebra Mussel Infestations at Public Facilities

    DTIC Science & Technology

    1992-07-01

    detailed examina- tion of hard -to-reach surfaces or specific components (such as fire protection systems or intake pipes for sensor devices) should...trash racks. Trash racks could become partially clogged with zebra mussels, shells , and other debris. Flow through the openings would be reduced, and... shells to the top of the lock wall. These are now used by Ontario Hydro for removing zebra mussels. At most facilities, the culvert is totally dewatered

  13. Prevention of zebra mussel infestation and dispersal during aquaculture operations

    Waller, D.L.; Fisher, S.W.; Dabrowska, H.

    1996-01-01

    The zebra mussel Dreissena polymorpha, an exotic invasive species, poses a major threat to North American fish management programs and the aquaculture industry. Fish hatcheries may become infected with zebra mussels from a variety of sources, including the water supply, fish shipments, boats, and equipment. The hatcheries could then serve as agents for the overland dispersal of zebra mussels into stocked waters and to other fish hatcheries. We evaluated the effectiveness and safety of aquaculture chemicals for use in controlling zebra mussels in fish hatcheries and preventing dispersal of veligers during fish transport. Chemicals were evaluated for use in fish transport and as disinfectants for ponds and equipment. Standardized static toxicity tests were conducted with representative species of warmwater, coolwater, and coldwater fishes and with larval (3-d-old veligers), early juvenile (settling larvae), and adult zebra mussels. Chemical concentrations and exposure durations were based on recommended treatment levels for fish, eggs, and ponds. Recommended treatment levels were also exceeded, if necessary, to establish lethal levels for zebra mussels of different developmental stages. Our results indicate that some chemicals currently in use in hatcheries may be effective for controlling zebra mussels in various operations. Chloride salts were the safest and most effective therapeutants tested for use in fish transport. The toxicity of chloride salts to fish varied among species and with temperature; only one treatment regime (sodium chloride at 10,000 mg/L) was safe to all fish species that we tested, but it was only effective on veliger and settler stages of the zebra mussel. Effective disinfectants were benzalkonium chloride for use on equipment and rotenone for use in ponds after fish are harvested. The regulatory status of the identified chemicals is discussed as well as several nonchemical control alternatives.

  14. Immune complexes and Ross River virus disease (epidemic polyarthritis).

    PubMed

    Fraser, J R; Cunningham, A L; Mathews, J D; Riglar, A

    1988-01-01

    Immune complexes were sought in serum and synovial fluid in Ross River virus disease (epidemic polyarthritis). Multiple samples from 15 patients showing varied degrees of disease activity over a 3 month period were analysed for their content of complement components C3 and C4, and for C1q solid-phase and Raji cell binding activity. Levels of C3 and C1q binding activity were normal. C4 and Raji cell binding activity were normal except for three high levels of Raji cell binding, of which two were accompanied by low levels of C4, with normal C3 and C1q binding. Synovial fluid showed anomalous Raji cell reactivity of uncertain significance. Conglutinin solid-phase binding activity and IgG rheumatoid factor were compared in the serum of 20 patients during active disease and after recovery. The results were identical and within the normal range in both phases. One patient developed IgM rheumatoid factor in a low titre late in his illness. Although these findings do not entirely exclude a role for immune complexes formed at the onset in the circulation or tissues, it is concluded from this and other evidence that circulating complexes are not commonly responsible for the persistence of syndromes in this disease.

  15. The genome revolution and its role in understanding complex diseases.

    PubMed

    Hofker, Marten H; Fu, Jingyuan; Wijmenga, Cisca

    2014-10-01

    The completion of the human genome sequence in 2003 clearly marked the beginning of a new era for biomedical research. It spurred technological progress that was unprecedented in the life sciences, including the development of high-throughput technologies to detect genetic variation and gene expression. The study of genetics has become "big data science". One of the current goals of genetic research is to use genomic information to further our understanding of common complex diseases. An essential first step made towards this goal was by the identification of thousands of single nucleotide polymorphisms showing robust association with hundreds of different traits and diseases. As insight into common genetic variation has expanded enormously and the technology to identify more rare variation has become available, we can utilize these advances to gain a better understanding of disease etiology. This will lead to developments in personalized medicine and P4 healthcare. Here, we review some of the historical events and perspectives before and after the completion of the human genome sequence. We also describe the success of large-scale genetic association studies and how these are expected to yield more insight into complex disorders. We show how we can now combine gene-oriented research and systems-based approaches to develop more complex models to help explain the etiology of common diseases. This article is part of a Special Issue entitled: From Genome to Function. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  16. Full genome sequences of zebra-borne equine herpesvirus type 1 isolated from zebra, onager and Thomson's gazelle.

    PubMed

    Guo, Xiaoqin; Izume, Satoko; Okada, Ayaka; Ohya, Kenji; Kimura, Takashi; Fukushi, Hideto

    2014-09-01

    A strain of equine herpesvirus type 1 (EHV-1) was isolated from zebra. This strain, called "zebra-borne EHV-1", was also isolated from an onager and a gazelle in zoological gardens in U.S.A. The full genome sequences of the 3 strains were determined. They shared 99% identities with each other, while they shared 98% and 95% identities with the horse derived EHV-1 and equine herpesvirus type 9, respectively. Sequence data indicated that the EHV-1 isolated from a polar bear in Germany is one of the zebra-borne EHV-1 and not a recombinant virus. These results indicated that zebra-borne EHV-1 is a subtype of EHV-1.

  17. Zebra: An advanced PWR lattice code

    SciT

    Cao, L.; Wu, H.; Zheng, Y.

    2012-07-01

    This paper presents an overview of an advanced PWR lattice code ZEBRA developed at NECP laboratory in Xi'an Jiaotong Univ.. The multi-group cross-section library is generated from the ENDF/B-VII library by NJOY and the 361-group SHEM structure is employed. The resonance calculation module is developed based on sub-group method. The transport solver is Auto-MOC code, which is a self-developed code based on the Method of Characteristic and the customization of AutoCAD software. The whole code is well organized in a modular software structure. Some numerical results during the validation of the code demonstrate that this code has a good precisionmore » and a high efficiency. (authors)« less

  18. Increasing mortality burden among adults with complex congenital heart disease.

    PubMed

    Greutmann, Matthias; Tobler, Daniel; Kovacs, Adrienne H; Greutmann-Yantiri, Mehtap; Haile, Sarah R; Held, Leonhard; Ivanov, Joan; Williams, William G; Oechslin, Erwin N; Silversides, Candice K; Colman, Jack M

    2015-01-01

    Progress in management of congenital heart disease has shifted mortality largely to adulthood. However, adult survivors with complex congenital heart disease are not cured and remain at risk of premature death as young adults. Thus, our aim was to describe the evolution and mortality risk of adult patient cohorts with complex congenital heart disease. Among 12,644 adults with congenital heart disease followed at a single center from 1980 to 2009, 176 had Eisenmenger syndrome, 76 had unrepaired cyanotic defects, 221 had atrial switch operations for transposition of the great arteries, 158 had congenitally corrected transposition of the great arteries, 227 had Fontan palliation, and 789 had repaired tetralogy of Fallot. We depict the 30-year evolution of these 6 patient cohorts, analyze survival probabilities in adulthood, and predict future number of deaths through 2029. Since 1980, there has been a steady increase in numbers of patients followed, except in cohorts with Eisenmenger syndrome and unrepaired cyanotic defects. Between 1980 and 2009, 308 patients in the study cohorts (19%) died. At the end of 2009, 85% of survivors were younger than 50 years. Survival estimates for all cohorts were markedly lower than for the general population, with important differences between cohorts. Over the upcoming two decades, we predict a substantial increase in numbers of deaths among young adults with subaortic right ventricles, Fontan palliation, and repaired tetralogy of Fallot. Anticipatory action is needed to prepare clinical services for increasing numbers of young adults at risk of dying from complex congenital heart disease. © 2014 The Authors. Congenital Heart Disease Published by Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  19. Decoding the role of regulatory element polymorphisms in complex disease.

    PubMed

    Vockley, Christopher M; Barrera, Alejandro; Reddy, Timothy E

    2017-04-01

    Genetic variation in gene regulatory elements contributes to diverse human diseases, ranging from rare and severe developmental defects to common and complex diseases such as obesity and diabetes. Early examples of regulatory mechanisms of human diseases involve large chromosomal rearrangements that change the regulatory connections within the genome. Single nucleotide variants in regulatory elements can also contribute to disease, potentially via demonstrated associations with changes in transcription factor binding, enhancer activity, post-translational histone modifications, long-range enhancer-promoter interactions, or RNA polymerase recruitment. Establishing causality between non-coding genetic variants, gene regulation, and disease has recently become more feasible with advances in genome-editing and epigenome-editing technologies. As establishing causal regulatory mechanisms of diseases becomes routine, functional annotation of target genes is likely to emerge as a major bottleneck for translation into patient benefits. In this review, we discuss the history and recent advances in understanding the regulatory mechanisms of human disease, and new challenges likely to be encountered once establishing those mechanisms becomes rote. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  20. Humoral response of captive zebra sharks Stegostoma fasciatum to salivary gland proteins of the leech Branchellion torpedinis.

    PubMed

    Marancik, David P; Leary, John H; Fast, Mark M; Flajnik, Martin F; Camus, Alvin C

    2012-10-01

    Parasitism by the marine leech Branchellion torpedinis is known to cause disease and mortality in captive elasmobranchs and is difficult to control when inadvertently introduced into public aquaria. Preliminary characterization of the salivary gland transcriptome of B. torpedinis has identified anticoagulants, proteases, and immunomodulators that may be secreted into host tissues to aid leech feeding. This retrospective study examined antigen-specific serum IgM responses in captive zebra sharks Stegostoma fasciatum to leech salivary gland extract. Antibody response was examined by ELISA and Western blot assays in 20 serum samples from six zebra sharks, with a 5 year history of leech infection, and 18 serum samples from 8 captive bred zebra sharks, with no history of leech exposure. ELISA demonstrated significantly higher serum IgM titers to salivary gland extract in exposed zebra sharks compared to the non-exposed population. No obvious trends in antibody titers were appreciated in exposed zebra sharks over a four-year period. One-dimensional and two-dimensional Western blot assays revealed IgM targeted specific salivary gland proteins within the 40, 55, 70 and 90 kD range. Antigenic proteins identified by liquid chromatography-tandem mass spectrometry and de novo peptide sequencing include a secreted disintegrin, metalloproteinase and thrombospondin motif containing protein (ADAMTS), tubulin, aldehyde dehydrogenase and two unknown proteins. Humoral immune responses to leech salivary gland proteins warrants further investigation as there may be options to exploit immune mechanisms to reduce parasite burdens in aquaria. Copyright © 2012 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  1. Gene-Disease Network Analysis Reveals Functional Modules in Mendelian, Complex and Environmental Diseases

    PubMed Central

    Bauer-Mehren, Anna; Bundschus, Markus; Rautschka, Michael; Mayer, Miguel A.; Sanz, Ferran; Furlong, Laura I.

    2011-01-01

    Background Scientists have been trying to understand the molecular mechanisms of diseases to design preventive and therapeutic strategies for a long time. For some diseases, it has become evident that it is not enough to obtain a catalogue of the disease-related genes but to uncover how disruptions of molecular networks in the cell give rise to disease phenotypes. Moreover, with the unprecedented wealth of information available, even obtaining such catalogue is extremely difficult. Principal Findings We developed a comprehensive gene-disease association database by integrating associations from several sources that cover different biomedical aspects of diseases. In particular, we focus on the current knowledge of human genetic diseases including mendelian, complex and environmental diseases. To assess the concept of modularity of human diseases, we performed a systematic study of the emergent properties of human gene-disease networks by means of network topology and functional annotation analysis. The results indicate a highly shared genetic origin of human diseases and show that for most diseases, including mendelian, complex and environmental diseases, functional modules exist. Moreover, a core set of biological pathways is found to be associated with most human diseases. We obtained similar results when studying clusters of diseases, suggesting that related diseases might arise due to dysfunction of common biological processes in the cell. Conclusions For the first time, we include mendelian, complex and environmental diseases in an integrated gene-disease association database and show that the concept of modularity applies for all of them. We furthermore provide a functional analysis of disease-related modules providing important new biological insights, which might not be discovered when considering each of the gene-disease association repositories independently. Hence, we present a suitable framework for the study of how genetic and environmental factors

  2. USGS Zebra Mussel Monitoring Program for north Texas

    Churchill, Christopher J.; Baldys, Stanley

    2012-01-01

    The U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) Zebra Mussel Monitoring Program for north Texas provides early detection and monitoring of zebra mussels (Dreissena polymorpha) by using a holistic suite of detection methods. The program is designed to assess zebra mussel occurrence, distribution, and densities in north Texas waters by using four approaches: (1) SCUBA diving, (2) water-sample collection with plankton tow nets (followed by laboratory analyses), (3) artificial substrates, and (4) water-quality sampling. Data collected during this type of monitoring can assist rapid response efforts and can be used to quantify the economic and ecological effects of zebra mussels in the north Texas area. Monitoring under this program began in April 2010. The presence of large zebra mussel populations often causes undesirable economic and ecological effects, including damage to water-processing infrastructure and hydroelectric powerplants (with an estimated 10-year cost of $3.1 billion), displacement of native mussels, increases in concentrations of certain species of cyanobacteria, and increases in concentrations of geosmin (an organic compound that results in taste and odor issues in water). Since no large-scale, environmentally safe eradication method has been developed for zebra mussels, it is difficult to remove established populations. Broad physicochemical adaptability, prolific reproductive capacity, and rapid dispersal methods have enabled zebra mussels, within a period of about 20 years, to establish populations under differing environmental conditions across much of the eastern part of the United States. In Texas, the presence of zebra mussels was first confirmed in April 2009 in Lake Texoma in the Red River Basin along the Texas-Oklahoma border. They were most likely introduced into Lake Texoma through overland transport from an infested water body. Since then, the presence of zebra mussels has been reported in both the Red River and Washita River arms of Lake Texoma, in

  3. Therapeutic potential of Mediator complex subunits in metabolic diseases.

    PubMed

    Ranjan, Amol; Ansari, Suraiya A

    2018-01-01

    The multisubunit Mediator is an evolutionary conserved transcriptional coregulatory complex in eukaryotes. It is needed for the transcriptional regulation of gene expression in general as well as in a gene specific manner. Mediator complex subunits interact with different transcription factors as well as components of RNA Pol II transcription initiation complex and in doing so act as a bridge between gene specific transcription factors and general Pol II transcription machinery. Specific interaction of various Mediator subunits with nuclear receptors (NRs) and other transcription factors involved in metabolism has been reported in different studies. Evidences indicate that ligand-activated NRs recruit Mediator complex for RNA Pol II-dependent gene transcription. These NRs have been explored as therapeutic targets in different metabolic diseases; however, they show side-effects as targets due to their overlapping involvement in different signaling pathways. Here we discuss the interaction of various Mediator subunits with transcription factors involved in metabolism and whether specific interaction of these transcription factors with Mediator subunits could be potentially utilized as therapeutic strategy in a variety of metabolic diseases. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier B.V. and Société Française de Biochimie et Biologie Moléculaire (SFBBM). All rights reserved.

  4. Aligning population-based care management with chronic disease complexity.

    PubMed

    Hewner, Sharon; Seo, Jin Young; Gothard, Sandra E; Johnson, Barbara J

    2014-01-01

    Risk-stratified care management requires knowledge of the complexity of chronic disease and comorbidity, information that is often not readily available in the primary care setting. The purpose of this article was to describe a population-based approach to risk-stratified care management that could be applied in primary care. Three populations (Medicaid, Medicare, and privately insured) at a regional health plan were divided into risk-stratified cohorts based on chronic disease and complexity, and utilization was compared before and after the implementation of population-specific care management teams of nurses. Risk-stratified care management was associated with reductions in hospitalization rates in all three populations, but the opportunities to avoid admissions were different. Knowledge of population complexity is critical to the development of risk-stratified care management in primary care, and a complexity matrix can help nurses identify gaps in care and align interventions to cohort and population needs. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  5. The mathematical limits of genetic prediction for complex chronic disease.

    PubMed

    Keyes, Katherine M; Smith, George Davey; Koenen, Karestan C; Galea, Sandro

    2015-06-01

    Attempts at predicting individual risk of disease based on common germline genetic variation have largely been disappointing. The present paper formalises why genetic prediction at the individual level is and will continue to have limited utility given the aetiological architecture of most common complex diseases. Data were simulated on one million populations with 10 000 individuals in each populations with varying prevalences of a genetic risk factor, an interacting environmental factor and the background rate of disease. The determinant risk ratio and risk difference magnitude for the association between a gene variant and disease is a function of the prevalence of the interacting factors that activate the gene, and the background rate of disease. The risk ratio and total excess cases due to the genetic factor increase as the prevalence of interacting factors increase, and decrease as the background rate of disease increases. Germline genetic variations have high predictive capacity for individual disease only under conditions of high heritability of particular genetic sequences, plausible only under rare variant hypotheses. Under a model of common germline genetic variants that interact with other genes and/or environmental factors in order to cause disease, the predictive capacity of common genetic variants is determined by the prevalence of the factors that interact with the variant and the background rate. A focus on estimating genetic associations for the purpose of prediction without explicitly grounding such work in an understanding of modifiable (including environmentally influenced) factors will be limited in its ability to yield important insights about the risk of disease. Published by the BMJ Publishing Group Limited. For permission to use (where not already granted under a licence) please go to http://group.bmj.com/group/rights-licensing/permissions.

  6. Appraisal of unimodal cues during agonistic interactions in Maylandia zebra

    PubMed Central

    Ben Ammar, Imen; Fernandez, Marie S.A.; Boyer, Nicolas; Attia, Joël; Fonseca, Paulo J.; Amorim, M. Clara P.; Beauchaud, Marilyn

    2017-01-01

    Communication is essential during social interactions including animal conflicts and it is often a complex process involving multiple sensory channels or modalities. To better understand how different modalities interact during communication, it is fundamental to study the behavioural responses to both the composite multimodal signal and each unimodal component with adequate experimental protocols. Here we test how an African cichlid, which communicates with multiple senses, responds to different sensory stimuli in a social relevant scenario. We tested Maylandia zebra males with isolated chemical (urine or holding water coming both from dominant males), visual (real opponent or video playback) and acoustic (agonistic sounds) cues during agonistic interactions. We showed that (1) these fish relied mostly on the visual modality, showing increased aggressiveness in response to the sight of a real contestant but no responses to urine or agonistic sounds presented separately, (2) video playback in our study did not appear appropriate to test the visual modality and needs more technical prospecting, (3) holding water provoked territorial behaviours and seems to be promising for the investigation into the role of the chemical channel in this species. Our findings suggest that unimodal signals are non-redundant but how different sensory modalities interplay during communication remains largely unknown in fish. PMID:28785523

  7. Rice Sheath Rot: An Emerging Ubiquitous Destructive Disease Complex

    PubMed Central

    Bigirimana, Vincent de P.; Hua, Gia K. H.; Nyamangyoku, Obedi I.; Höfte, Monica

    2015-01-01

    Around one century ago, a rice disease characterized mainly by rotting of sheaths was reported in Taiwan. The causal agent was identified as Acrocylindrium oryzae, later known as Sarocladium oryzae. Since then it has become clear that various other organisms can cause similar disease symptoms, including Fusarium sp. and fluorescent pseudomonads. These organisms have in common that they produce a range of phytotoxins that induce necrosis in plants. The same agents also cause grain discoloration, chaffiness, and sterility and are all seed-transmitted. Rice sheath rot disease symptoms are found in all rice-growing areas of the world. The disease is now getting momentum and is considered as an important emerging rice production threat. The disease can lead to variable yield losses, which can be as high as 85%. This review aims at improving our understanding of the disease etiology of rice sheath rot and mainly deals with the three most reported rice sheath rot pathogens: S. oryzae, the Fusarium fujikuroi complex, and Pseudomonas fuscovaginae. Causal agents, pathogenicity determinants, interactions among the various pathogens, epidemiology, geographical distribution, and control options will be discussed. PMID:26697031

  8. Integrated Genomic and Network-Based Analyses of Complex Diseases and Human Disease Network.

    PubMed

    Al-Harazi, Olfat; Al Insaif, Sadiq; Al-Ajlan, Monirah A; Kaya, Namik; Dzimiri, Nduna; Colak, Dilek

    2016-06-20

    A disease phenotype generally reflects various pathobiological processes that interact in a complex network. The highly interconnected nature of the human protein interaction network (interactome) indicates that, at the molecular level, it is difficult to consider diseases as being independent of one another. Recently, genome-wide molecular measurements, data mining and bioinformatics approaches have provided the means to explore human diseases from a molecular basis. The exploration of diseases and a system of disease relationships based on the integration of genome-wide molecular data with the human interactome could offer a powerful perspective for understanding the molecular architecture of diseases. Recently, subnetwork markers have proven to be more robust and reliable than individual biomarker genes selected based on gene expression profiles alone, and achieve higher accuracy in disease classification. We have applied one of these methodologies to idiopathic dilated cardiomyopathy (IDCM) data that we have generated using a microarray and identified significant subnetworks associated with the disease. In this paper, we review the recent endeavours in this direction, and summarize the existing methodologies and computational tools for network-based analysis of complex diseases and molecular relationships among apparently different disorders and human disease network. We also discuss the future research trends and topics of this promising field. Copyright © 2015 Institute of Genetics and Developmental Biology, Chinese Academy of Sciences, and Genetics Society of China. Published by Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  9. Song Recognition in Zebra Finches: Are There Sensitive Periods for Song Memorization?

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Braaten, Richard F.

    2010-01-01

    Male zebra finches learn to sing songs that they hear between 25 and 65 days of age, the sensitive period for song learning. In this experiment, male and female zebra finches were exposed to zebra finch songs either before (n = 9) or during (n = 4) the sensitive period. Following song exposure, recognition memory for the songs was assessed with an…

  10. "Touching Triton": Building Student Understanding of Complex Disease Risk.

    PubMed

    Loftin, Madelene; East, Kelly; Hott, Adam; Lamb, Neil

    2016-01-01

    Life science classrooms often emphasize the exception to the rule when it comes to teaching genetics, focusing heavily on rare single-gene and Mendelian traits. By contrast, the vast majority of human traits and diseases are caused by more complicated interactions between genetic and environmental factors. Research indicates that students have a deterministic view of genetics, generalize Mendelian inheritance patterns to all traits, and have unrealistic expectations of genetic technologies. The challenge lies in how to help students analyze complex disease risk with a lack of curriculum materials. Providing open access to both content resources and an engaging storyline can be achieved using a "serious game" model. "Touching Triton" was developed as a serious game in which students are asked to analyze data from a medical record, family history, and genomic report in order to develop an overall lifetime risk estimate of six common, complex diseases. Evaluation of student performance shows significant learning gains in key content areas along with a high level of engagement.

  11. How rare bone diseases have informed our knowledge of complex diseases.

    PubMed

    Johnson, Mark L

    2016-01-01

    Rare bone diseases, generally defined as monogenic traits with either autosomal recessive or dominant patterns of inheritance, have provided a rich database of genes and associated pathways over the past 2-3 decades. The molecular genetic dissection of these bone diseases has yielded some major surprises in terms of the causal genes and/or involved pathways. The discovery of genes/pathways involved in diseases such as osteopetrosis, osteosclerosis, osteogenesis imperfecta and many other rare bone diseases have all accelerated our understanding of complex traits. Importantly these discoveries have provided either direct validation for a specific gene embedded in a group of genes within an interval identified through a complex trait genome-wide association study (GWAS) or based upon the pathway associated with a monogenic trait gene, provided a means to prioritize a large number of genes for functional validation studies. In some instances GWAS studies have yielded candidate genes that fall within linkage intervals associated with monogenic traits and resulted in the identification of causal mutations in those rare diseases. Driving all of this discovery is a complement of technologies such as genome sequencing, bioinformatics and advanced statistical analysis methods that have accelerated genetic dissection and greatly reduced the cost. Thus, rare bone disorders in partnership with GWAS have brought us to the brink of a new era of personalized genomic medicine in which the prevention and management of complex diseases will be driven by the molecular understanding of each individuals contributing genetic risks for disease.

  12. SNPing Away at Complex Diseases: Analysis of Single-Nucleotide Polymorphisms around APOE in Alzheimer Disease

    PubMed Central

    Martin, Eden R.; Lai, Eric H.; Gilbert, John R.; Rogala, Allison R.; Afshari, A. J.; Riley, John; Finch, K. L.; Stevens, J. F.; Livak, K. J.; Slotterbeck, Brandon D.; Slifer, Susan H.; Warren, Liling L.; Conneally, P. Michael; Schmechel, Donald E.; Purvis, Ian; Pericak-Vance, Margaret A.; Roses, Allen D.; Vance, Jeffery M.

    2000-01-01

    There has been great interest in the prospects of using single-nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) in the search for complex disease genes, and several initiatives devoted to the identification and mapping of SNPs throughout the human genome are currently underway. However, actual data investigating the use of SNPs for identification of complex disease genes are scarce. To begin to look at issues surrounding the use of SNPs in complex disease studies, we have initiated a collaborative SNP mapping study around APOE, the well-established susceptibility gene for late-onset Alzheimer disease (AD). Sixty SNPs in a 1.5-Mb region surrounding APOE were genotyped in samples of unrelated cases of AD, in controls, and in families with AD. Standard tests were conducted to look for association of SNP alleles with AD, in cases and controls. We also used family-based association analyses, including recently developed methods to look for haplotype association. Evidence of association (P⩽.05) was identified for 7 of 13 SNPs, including the APOE-4 polymorphism, spanning 40 kb on either side of APOE. As expected, very strong evidence for association with AD was seen for the APOE-4 polymorphism, as well as for two other SNPs that lie <16 kb from APOE. Haplotype analysis using family data increased significance over that seen in single-locus tests for some of the markers, and, for these data, improved localization of the gene. Our results demonstrate that associations can be detected at SNPs near a complex disease gene. We found that a high density of markers will be necessary in order to have a good chance of including SNPs with detectable levels of allelic association with the disease mutation, and statistical analysis based on haplotypes can provide additional information with respect to tests of significance and fine localization of complex disease genes. PMID:10869235

  13. SNPing away at complex diseases: analysis of single-nucleotide polymorphisms around APOE in Alzheimer disease.

    PubMed

    Martin, E R; Lai, E H; Gilbert, J R; Rogala, A R; Afshari, A J; Riley, J; Finch, K L; Stevens, J F; Livak, K J; Slotterbeck, B D; Slifer, S H; Warren, L L; Conneally, P M; Schmechel, D E; Purvis, I; Pericak-Vance, M A; Roses, A D; Vance, J M

    2000-08-01

    There has been great interest in the prospects of using single-nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) in the search for complex disease genes, and several initiatives devoted to the identification and mapping of SNPs throughout the human genome are currently underway. However, actual data investigating the use of SNPs for identification of complex disease genes are scarce. To begin to look at issues surrounding the use of SNPs in complex disease studies, we have initiated a collaborative SNP mapping study around APOE, the well-established susceptibility gene for late-onset Alzheimer disease (AD). Sixty SNPs in a 1.5-Mb region surrounding APOE were genotyped in samples of unrelated cases of AD, in controls, and in families with AD. Standard tests were conducted to look for association of SNP alleles with AD, in cases and controls. We also used family-based association analyses, including recently developed methods to look for haplotype association. Evidence of association (Pcomplex disease gene. We found that a high density of markers will be necessary in order to have a good chance of including SNPs with detectable levels of allelic association with the disease mutation, and statistical analysis based on haplotypes can provide additional information with respect to tests of significance and fine localization of complex disease genes.

  14. Chemical regulation of spawning in the zebra mussel (Dreissena polymorpha)

    Ram, Jeffrey L.; Nichols, S. Jerrine; Nalepa, Thomas F.; Schloesser, Donald W.

    1992-01-01

    Previous literature suggests that spawning in bivalves is chemically regulated, both by environmental chemical cues and by internal chemical mediators. In a model proposed for zebra mussels, chemicals from phytoplankton initially trigger spawning, and chemicals associated with gametes provide further stimulus for spawning. The response to environmental chemicals is internally mediated by a pathway utilizing serotonin (5-hydroxytryptamine, a neurotransmitter), which acts directly on both male and female gonads. The role of serotonin and most other aspects of the model have been tested only on bivalves other than zebra mussels. The effect of serotonin on zebra mussel spawning was tested. Serotonin (10-5 and 10-3 M) injected into ripe males induced spawning, but injection of serotonin into females did not. Gametes were not released by 10-6 serotonin; in most cases, serotonin injection did not release gametes from immature recipients. Serotonin injection provides a reliable means for identifying ripe male zebra mussels and for obtaining zebra mussel sperm without the need for dissection.

  15. Fitness consequences of polymorphic inversions in the zebra finch genome.

    PubMed

    Knief, Ulrich; Hemmrich-Stanisak, Georg; Wittig, Michael; Franke, Andre; Griffith, Simon C; Kempenaers, Bart; Forstmeier, Wolfgang

    2016-09-29

    Inversion polymorphisms constitute an evolutionary puzzle: they should increase embryo mortality in heterokaryotypic individuals but still they are widespread in some taxa. Some insect species have evolved mechanisms to reduce the cost of embryo mortality but humans have not. In birds, a detailed analysis is missing although intraspecific inversion polymorphisms are regarded as common. In Australian zebra finches (Taeniopygia guttata), two polymorphic inversions are known cytogenetically and we set out to detect these two and potentially additional inversions using genomic tools and study their effects on embryo mortality and other fitness-related and morphological traits. Using whole-genome SNP data, we screened 948 wild zebra finches for polymorphic inversions and describe four large (12-63 Mb) intraspecific inversion polymorphisms with allele frequencies close to 50 %. Using additional data from 5229 birds and 9764 eggs from wild and three captive zebra finch populations, we show that only the largest inversions increase embryo mortality in heterokaryotypic males, with surprisingly small effect sizes. We test for a heterozygote advantage on other fitness components but find no evidence for heterosis for any of the inversions. Yet, we find strong additive effects on several morphological traits. The mechanism that has carried the derived inversion haplotypes to such high allele frequencies remains elusive. It appears that selection has effectively minimized the costs associated with inversions in zebra finches. The highly skewed distribution of recombination events towards the chromosome ends in zebra finches and other estrildid species may function to minimize crossovers in the inverted regions.

  16. Pacing and Defibrillators in Complex Congenital Heart Disease

    PubMed Central

    Chubb, Henry; O’Neill, Mark; Rosenthal, Eric

    2016-01-01

    Device therapy in the complex congenital heart disease (CHD) population is a challenging field. There is a myriad of devices available, but none designed specifically for the CHD patient group, and a scarcity of prospective studies to guide best practice. Baseline cardiac anatomy, prior surgical and interventional procedures, existing tachyarrhythmias and the requirement for future intervention all play a substantial role in decision making. For both pacing systems and implantable cardioverter defibrillators, numerous factors impact on the merits of system location (endovascular versus non-endovascular), lead positioning, device selection and device programming. For those with Fontan circulation and following the atrial switch procedure there are also very specific considerations regarding access and potential complications. This review discusses the published guidelines, device indications and the best available evidence for guidance of device implantation in the complex CHD population. PMID:27403295

  17. [Magnetic therapy for complex treatment of chronic periodontal disease].

    PubMed

    P'yanzina, A V

    The aim of the study was to elaborate the methodology of magnetic therapy for complex treatment of chronic periodontal disease (CPD). The study included 60 patients aged 35 to 65 years with moderate CPD divided in 2 groups. Patients in group 1 (controls) received impulse carbonate irrigation for 12 min №10, group 2 additionally received magnetic therapy for 5 min №10 in maxillary and mandibular areas. periodontal and rheological indices proved magnetic therapy to be useful tool for eradication of inflammation, periodontal tissue functional recovery and stabilization.

  18. Complex Genetics and the Etiology of Human Congenital Heart Disease

    PubMed Central

    Gelb, Bruce D.; Chung, Wendy K.

    2014-01-01

    Congenital heart disease (CHD) is the most common birth defect. Despite considerable advances in care, CHD remains a major contributor to newborn mortality and is associated with substantial morbidities and premature death. Genetic abnormalities appear to be the primary cause of CHD, but identifying precise defects has proven challenging, principally because CHD is a complex genetic trait. Mainly because of recent advances in genomic technology such as next-generation DNA sequencing, scientists have begun to identify the genetic variants underlying CHD. In this article, the roles of modifier genes, de novo mutations, copy number variants, common variants, and noncoding mutations in the pathogenesis of CHD are reviewed. PMID:24985128

  19. Complex and differential glial responses in Alzheimer's disease and ageing.

    PubMed

    Rodríguez, José J; Butt, Arthur M; Gardenal, Emanuela; Parpura, Vladimir; Verkhratsky, Alexei

    2016-01-01

    Glial cells and their association with neurones are fundamental for brain function. The emergence of complex neurone-glial networks assures rapid information transfer, creating a sophisticated circuitry where both types of neural cells work in concert, serving different activities. All glial cells, represented by astrocytes, oligodendrocytes, microglia and NG2-glia, are essential for brain homeostasis and defence. Thus, glia are key not only for normal central nervous system (CNS) function, but also to its dysfunction, being directly associated with all forms of neuropathological processes. Therefore, the progression and outcome of neurological and neurodegenerative diseases depend on glial reactions. In this review, we provide a concise account of recent data obtained from both human material and animal models demonstrating the pathological involvement of glia in neurodegenerative processes, including Alzheimer's disease (AD), as well as physiological ageing.

  20. Cryptococcus and Phagocytes: Complex Interactions that Influence Disease Outcome

    PubMed Central

    Leopold Wager, Chrissy M.; Hole, Camaron R.; Wozniak, Karen L.; Wormley, Floyd L.

    2016-01-01

    Cryptococcus neoformans and C. gattii are fungal pathogens that cause life-threatening disease. These fungi commonly enter their host via inhalation into the lungs where they encounter resident phagocytes, including macrophages and dendritic cells, whose response has a pronounced impact on the outcome of disease. Cryptococcus has complex interactions with the resident and infiltrating innate immune cells that, ideally, result in destruction of the yeast. These phagocytic cells have pattern recognition receptors that allow recognition of specific cryptococcal cell wall and capsule components. However, Cryptococcus possesses several virulence factors including a polysaccharide capsule, melanin production and secretion of various enzymes that aid in evasion of the immune system or enhance its ability to thrive within the phagocyte. This review focuses on the intricate interactions between the cryptococci and innate phagocytic cells including discussion of manipulation and evasion strategies used by Cryptococcus, anti-cryptococcal responses by the phagocytes and approaches for targeting phagocytes for the development of novel immunotherapeutics. PMID:26903984

  1. A food web modeling analysis of a Midwestern, USA eutrophic lake dominated by non-native Common Carp and Zebra Mussels

    Colvin, Michael E.; Pierce, Clay; Stewart, Timothy W.

    2015-01-01

    Food web modeling is recognized as fundamental to understanding the complexities of aquatic systems. Ecopath is the most common mass-balance model used to represent food webs and quantify trophic interactions among groups. We constructed annual Ecopath models for four consecutive years during the first half-decade of a zebra mussel invasion in shallow, eutrophic Clear Lake, Iowa, USA, to evaluate changes in relative biomass and total system consumption among food web groups, evaluate food web impacts of non-native common carp and zebra mussels on food web groups, and to interpret food web impacts in light of on-going lake restoration. Total living biomass increased each year of the study; the majority of the increase due to a doubling in planktonic blue green algae, but several other taxa also increased including a more than two-order of magnitude increase in zebra mussels. Common carp accounted for the largest percentage of total fish biomass throughout the study even with on-going harvest. Chironomids, common carp, and zebra mussels were the top-three ranking consumer groups. Non-native common carp and zebra mussels accounted for an average of 42% of the total system consumption. Despite the relatively high biomass densities of common carp and zebra mussel, food web impacts was minimal due to excessive benthic and primary production in this eutrophic system. Consumption occurring via benthic pathways dominated system consumption in Clear Lake throughout our study, supporting the argument that benthic food webs are significant in shallow, eutrophic lake ecosystems and must be considered if ecosystem-level understanding is to be obtained.

  2. Pathogenic cascades in lysosomal disease-Why so complex?

    PubMed

    Walkley, S U

    2009-04-01

    Lysosomal disease represents a large group of more than 50 clinically recognized conditions resulting from inborn errors of metabolism affecting the organelle known as the lysosome. The lysosome is an integral part of the larger endosomal/lysosomal system, and is closely allied with the ubiquitin-proteosomal and autophagosomal systems, which together comprise essential cell machinery for substrate degradation and recycling, homeostatic control, and signalling. More than two-thirds of lysosomal diseases affect the brain, with neurons appearing particularly vulnerable to lysosomal compromise and showing diverse consequences ranging from specific axonal and dendritic abnormalities to neuron death. While failure of lysosomal function characteristically leads to lysosomal storage, new studies argue that lysosomal diseases may also be appropriately viewed as 'states of deficiency' rather than simply overabundance (storage). Interference with signalling events and salvage processing normally controlled by the endosomal/lysosomal system may represent key mechanisms accounting for the inherent complexity of lysosomal disorders. Analysis of lysosomal disease pathogenesis provides a unique window through which to observe the importance of the greater lysosomal system for normal cell health.

  3. Genotoxic effects induced by the exposure to an environmental mixture of illicit drugs to the zebra mussel.

    PubMed

    Parolini, Marco; Magni, Stefano; Castiglioni, Sara; Binelli, Andrea

    2016-10-01

    Despite the growing interest on the presence of illicit drugs in freshwater ecosystems, just recently the attention has been focused on their potential toxicity towards non-target aquatic species. However, these studies largely neglected the effects induced by exposure to complex mixtures of illicit drugs, which could be different compared to those caused by single psychoactive molecules. This study was aimed at investigating the genetic damage induced by a 14-day exposure to a realistic mixture of the most common illicit drugs found in surface waters worldwide (cocaine, benzoylecgonine, amphetamine, morphine and 3,4-methylenedioxymethamphetamine) on the zebra mussel (Dreissena polymorpha). The mixture caused a significant increase of DNA fragmentation and triggered the apoptotic process and micronuclei formation in zebra mussel hemocytes, pointing out its potential genotoxicity towards this bivalve species. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  4. Quagga and zebra mussels: biology, impacts, and control

    Nalepa, Thomas F.; Schloesser, Don W.; Nalepa, Thomas F.; Schloesser, Don W.

    2013-01-01

    Quagga and Zebra Mussels: Biology, Impacts, and Control, Second Edition provides a broad view of the zebra/quagga mussel issue, offering a historic perspective and up-to-date information on mussel research. Comprising 48 chapters, this second edition includes reviews of mussel morphology, physiology, and behavior. It details mussel distribution and spread in Europe and across North America, and examines policy and regulatory responses, management strategies, and mitigation efforts. In addition, this book provides extensive coverage of the impact of invasive mussel species on freshwater ecosystems, including effects on water clarity, phytoplankton, water quality, food web changes, and consequences to other aquatic fauna. It also reviews and offers new insights on how zebra and quagga mussels respond and adapt to varying environmental conditions. This new edition includes seven video clips that complement chapter text and, through visual documentation, provide a greater understanding of mussel behavior and distribution.

  5. Poverty, Disease, and the Ecology of Complex Systems

    PubMed Central

    Pluciński, Mateusz M.; Murray, Megan B.; Farmer, Paul E.; Barrett, Christopher B.; Keenan, Donald C.

    2014-01-01

    Understanding why some human populations remain persistently poor remains a significant challenge for both the social and natural sciences. The extremely poor are generally reliant on their immediate natural resource base for subsistence and suffer high rates of mortality due to parasitic and infectious diseases. Economists have developed a range of models to explain persistent poverty, often characterized as poverty traps, but these rarely account for complex biophysical processes. In this Essay, we argue that by coupling insights from ecology and economics, we can begin to model and understand the complex dynamics that underlie the generation and maintenance of poverty traps, which can then be used to inform analyses and possible intervention policies. To illustrate the utility of this approach, we present a simple coupled model of infectious diseases and economic growth, where poverty traps emerge from nonlinear relationships determined by the number of pathogens in the system. These nonlinearities are comparable to those often incorporated into poverty trap models in the economics literature, but, importantly, here the mechanism is anchored in core ecological principles. Coupled models of this sort could be usefully developed in many economically important biophysical systems—such as agriculture, fisheries, nutrition, and land use change—to serve as foundations for deeper explorations of how fundamental ecological processes influence structural poverty and economic development. PMID:24690902

  6. Poverty, disease, and the ecology of complex systems.

    PubMed

    Ngonghala, Calistus N; Pluciński, Mateusz M; Murray, Megan B; Farmer, Paul E; Barrett, Christopher B; Keenan, Donald C; Bonds, Matthew H

    2014-04-01

    Understanding why some human populations remain persistently poor remains a significant challenge for both the social and natural sciences. The extremely poor are generally reliant on their immediate natural resource base for subsistence and suffer high rates of mortality due to parasitic and infectious diseases. Economists have developed a range of models to explain persistent poverty, often characterized as poverty traps, but these rarely account for complex biophysical processes. In this Essay, we argue that by coupling insights from ecology and economics, we can begin to model and understand the complex dynamics that underlie the generation and maintenance of poverty traps, which can then be used to inform analyses and possible intervention policies. To illustrate the utility of this approach, we present a simple coupled model of infectious diseases and economic growth, where poverty traps emerge from nonlinear relationships determined by the number of pathogens in the system. These nonlinearities are comparable to those often incorporated into poverty trap models in the economics literature, but, importantly, here the mechanism is anchored in core ecological principles. Coupled models of this sort could be usefully developed in many economically important biophysical systems--such as agriculture, fisheries, nutrition, and land use change--to serve as foundations for deeper explorations of how fundamental ecological processes influence structural poverty and economic development.

  7. Current trends in pharmacy benefit designs: a threat to disease management in chronic complex diseases.

    PubMed

    Owens, Gary; Emons, Matthew F; Christian-Herman, Jennifer; Lawless, Grant

    2007-04-01

    With a focus on those patients who are candidates for treatment with biologic agents, we review the impact that current pharmacy benefit trends have on patients with chronic complex diseases and how they affect opportunities for disease management in this unique patient population. Dramatic increases in health care costs have led to a variety of strategies to manage cost. Many of these strategies either limit access to care or increase the patient's responsibility for choosing and paying for care, especially for medications. These strategies have a disproportionate impact on patients with chronic complex diseases, particularly those who require the use of biologic medications. A fundamental prerequisite of disease management has been coverage of disease-modifying therapies. If current pharmacy benefit trends continue, unintended consequences will likely occur including lost opportunities for disease management. Current pharmacy benefit trends could adversely impact disease management, particularly for patients requiring the use of biologic agents. Health plans should consider innovative benefit designs that reflect an appropriate level of cost sharing across all key stake-holders, ensuring appropriate access to needed therapies. Additional research is needed to clarify the value of newer approaches to therapies or benefit design changes.

  8. Peripheral neuropathy in complex inherited diseases: an approach to diagnosis.

    PubMed

    Rossor, Alexander M; Carr, Aisling S; Devine, Helen; Chandrashekar, Hoskote; Pelayo-Negro, Ana Lara; Pareyson, Davide; Shy, Michael E; Scherer, Steven S; Reilly, Mary M

    2017-10-01

    Peripheral neuropathy is a common finding in patients with complex inherited neurological diseases and may be subclinical or a major component of the phenotype. This review aims to provide a clinical approach to the diagnosis of this complex group of patients by addressing key questions including the predominant neurological syndrome associated with the neuropathy, for example, spasticity, the type of neuropathy and the other neurological and non-neurological features of the syndrome. Priority is given to the diagnosis of treatable conditions. Using this approach, we associated neuropathy with one of three major syndromic categories: (1) ataxia, (2) spasticity and (3) global neurodevelopmental impairment. Syndromes that do not fall easily into one of these three categories can be grouped according to the predominant system involved in addition to the neuropathy, for example, cardiomyopathy and neuropathy. We also include a separate category of complex inherited relapsing neuropathy syndromes, some of which may mimic Guillain-Barré syndrome, as many will have a metabolic aetiology and be potentially treatable. © Article author(s) (or their employer(s) unless otherwise stated in the text of the article) 2017. All rights reserved. No commercial use is permitted unless otherwise expressly granted.

  9. The neuronal porosome complex in health and disease

    PubMed Central

    Naik, Akshata R; Lewis, Kenneth T

    2015-01-01

    Cup-shaped secretory portals at the cell plasma membrane called porosomes mediate the precision release of intravesicular material from cells. Membrane-bound secretory vesicles transiently dock and fuse at the base of porosomes facing the cytosol to expel pressurized intravesicular contents from the cell during secretion. The structure, isolation, composition, and functional reconstitution of the neuronal porosome complex have greatly progressed, providing a molecular understanding of its function in health and disease. Neuronal porosomes are 15 nm cup-shaped lipoprotein structures composed of nearly 40 proteins, compared to the 120 nm nuclear pore complex composed of >500 protein molecules. Membrane proteins compose the porosome complex, making it practically impossible to solve its atomic structure. However, atomic force microscopy and small-angle X-ray solution scattering studies have provided three-dimensional structural details of the native neuronal porosome at sub-nanometer resolution, providing insights into the molecular mechanism of its function. The participation of several porosome proteins previously implicated in neurotransmission and neurological disorders, further attest to the crosstalk between porosome proteins and their coordinated involvement in release of neurotransmitter at the synapse. PMID:26264442

  10. Employment characteristics of a complex adult congenital heart disease cohort.

    PubMed

    Pickup, L; Gaffey, T; Clift, P; Bowater, S; Thorne, S; Hudsmith, L

    2017-08-01

    Due to advances in surgical techniques and subsequent management, there have been remarkable improvements in the survival of patients with congenital heart disease. In particular, larger numbers of patients with complex disease are now living into adulthood and are entering the workforce. To establish the types of employment complex adult congenital heart disease (ACHD) patients are engaged in, based on the largest cohort of patients with a single-ventricle circulation in the UK. Records of all patients with a univentricular (Fontan) circulation at the Queen Elizabeth Hospital were reviewed. Employment status was categorized according to the Standard Occupational Classification criteria (2010). A total of 210 patient records were reviewed. There was the same proportion of professionals in our cohort compared to the rest of the UK (20% versus 20%). There were greater proportions working in the caring, leisure and other service occupations (15% versus 9%), the elementary occupations (17% versus 11%), sales and customer service occupations (14% versus 8%) and administrative and secretarial occupations (12% versus 11%). The reverse trend was observed for associate professions and technical occupations (7% versus 14%), skilled trades (10% versus 11%), process, plant and machine operatives (3% versus 6%) and managers, directors and senior officials (2% versus 10%). The data show that ACHD patients with a single ventricle are engaged in a diverse range of occupations. It is essential that early education and employment advice are given to this cohort to maximize future employment potential. © The Author 2017. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the Society of Occupational Medicine. All rights reserved. For Permissions, please email: journals.permissions@oup.com

  11. Unintended Consequences of Conservation Actions: Managing Disease in Complex Ecosystems

    PubMed Central

    Chauvenet, Aliénor L. M.; Durant, Sarah M.; Hilborn, Ray; Pettorelli, Nathalie

    2011-01-01

    Infectious diseases are increasingly recognised to be a major threat to biodiversity. Disease management tools such as control of animal movements and vaccination can be used to mitigate the impact and spread of diseases in targeted species. They can reduce the risk of epidemics and in turn the risks of population decline and extinction. However, all species are embedded in communities and interactions between species can be complex, hence increasing the chance of survival of one species can have repercussions on the whole community structure. In this study, we use an example from the Serengeti ecosystem in Tanzania to explore how a vaccination campaign against Canine Distemper Virus (CDV) targeted at conserving the African lion (Panthera leo), could affect the viability of a coexisting threatened species, the cheetah (Acinonyx jubatus). Assuming that CDV plays a role in lion regulation, our results suggest that a vaccination programme, if successful, risks destabilising the simple two-species system considered, as simulations show that vaccination interventions could almost double the probability of extinction of an isolated cheetah population over the next 60 years. This work uses a simple example to illustrate how predictive modelling can be a useful tool in examining the consequence of vaccination interventions on non-target species. It also highlights the importance of carefully considering linkages between human-intervention, species viability and community structure when planning species-based conservation actions. PMID:22163323

  12. Unintended consequences of conservation actions: managing disease in complex ecosystems.

    PubMed

    Chauvenet, Aliénor L M; Durant, Sarah M; Hilborn, Ray; Pettorelli, Nathalie

    2011-01-01

    Infectious diseases are increasingly recognised to be a major threat to biodiversity. Disease management tools such as control of animal movements and vaccination can be used to mitigate the impact and spread of diseases in targeted species. They can reduce the risk of epidemics and in turn the risks of population decline and extinction. However, all species are embedded in communities and interactions between species can be complex, hence increasing the chance of survival of one species can have repercussions on the whole community structure. In this study, we use an example from the Serengeti ecosystem in Tanzania to explore how a vaccination campaign against Canine Distemper Virus (CDV) targeted at conserving the African lion (Panthera leo), could affect the viability of a coexisting threatened species, the cheetah (Acinonyx jubatus). Assuming that CDV plays a role in lion regulation, our results suggest that a vaccination programme, if successful, risks destabilising the simple two-species system considered, as simulations show that vaccination interventions could almost double the probability of extinction of an isolated cheetah population over the next 60 years. This work uses a simple example to illustrate how predictive modelling can be a useful tool in examining the consequence of vaccination interventions on non-target species. It also highlights the importance of carefully considering linkages between human-intervention, species viability and community structure when planning species-based conservation actions.

  13. Patient access to complex chronic disease records on the Internet.

    PubMed

    Bartlett, Cherry; Simpson, Keith; Turner, A Neil

    2012-08-06

    Access to medical records on the Internet has been reported to be acceptable and popular with patients, although most published evaluations have been of primary care or office-based practice. We tested the feasibility and acceptability of making unscreened results and data from a complex chronic disease pathway (renal medicine) available to patients over the Internet in a project involving more than half of renal units in the UK. Content and presentation of the Renal PatientView (RPV) system was developed with patient groups. It was designed to receive information from multiple local information systems and to require minimal extra work in units. After piloting in 4 centres in 2005 it was made available more widely. Opinions were sought from both patients who enrolled and from those who did not in a paper survey, and from staff in an electronic survey. Anonymous data on enrollment and usage were extracted from the webserver. By mid 2011 over 17,000 patients from 47 of the 75 renal units in the UK had registered. Users had a wide age range (<10 to >90 yrs) but were younger and had more years of education than non-users. They were enthusiastic about the concept, found it easy to use, and 80% felt it gave them a better understanding of their disease. The most common reason for not enrolling was being unaware of the system. A minority of patients had security concerns, and these were reduced after enrolling. Staff responses were also strongly positive. They reported that it aided patient concordance and disease management, and increased the quality of consultations with a neutral effect on consultation length. Neither patient nor staff responses suggested that RPV led to an overall increase in patient anxiety or to an increased burden on renal units beyond the time required to enroll each patient. Patient Internet access to secondary care records concerning a complex chronic disease is feasible and popular, providing an increased sense of empowerment and understanding

  14. Systemic disease manifestations associated with epilepsy in tuberous sclerosis complex.

    PubMed

    Jeong, Anna; Wong, Michael

    2016-09-01

    Epilepsy is one of the most disabling symptoms of tuberous sclerosis complex (TSC) and is a leading cause of morbidity and mortality in affected individuals. The relationship between systemic disease manifestations and the presence of epilepsy has not been thoroughly investigated. This study utilizes a multicenter TSC Natural History Database including 1,816 individuals to test the hypothesis that systemic disease manifestations of TSC are associated with epilepsy. Univariate analysis was used to identify patient characteristics (e.g., age, gender, race, and TSC mutation status) associated with the presence of epilepsy. Individual logistic regression models were built to examine the association between epilepsy and each candidate systemic or neurologic disease variable, controlling for the patient characteristics found to be significant on univariate analysis. Finally, a multivariable logistic regression model was constructed, using the variables found to be significant on the individual analyses as well as the patient characteristics that were significant on univariate analysis. Nearly 88% of our cohort had a history of epilepsy. After adjusting for age, gender, and TSC mutation status, multiple systemic disease manifestations including cardiac rhabdomyomas (odds ratio [OR] 2.3, 95% confidence interval [CI] 1.3-3.9, p = 0.002), retinal hamartomas (OR 2.1, CI 1.0-4.3, p = 0.04), renal cysts (OR 2.1, CI 1.3-3.4, p = 0.002), renal angiomyolipomas (OR 3.0, CI 1.8-5.1, p < 0.001), shagreen patches (OR 1.7, CI 1.0-2.7, p = 0.04), and facial angiofibromas (OR 1.7, CI 1.1-2.9, p = 0.03) were associated with a higher likelihood of epilepsy. In the multivariable logistic regression model, cardiac rhabdomyomas (OR 1.9, CI 1.0-3.5, p = 0.04) remained significantly associated with the presence of epilepsy. The identification of systemic disease manifestations such as cardiac rhabdomyomas that confer a higher risk of epilepsy development in TSC could contribute to disease

  15. Evaluation of athletes with complex congenital heart disease.

    PubMed

    Bates, Benjamin A; Richards, Camille; Hall, Michael; Kerut, Edmund K; Campbell, William; McMullan, Michael R

    2017-06-01

    As a result of improvements in congenital heart surgery, there are more adults alive today with congenital heart disease (CHD) than children. Individuals with cardiac birth defects may be able to participate in physical activities but require proper cardiovascular evaluation. The American Heart Association and American College of Cardiology released guidelines in 2015 for athletes with cardiovascular abnormalities. The guidelines express that although restriction from competitive athletics may be indicated for some, the majority of individuals with CHD can and should engage in some form of physical activity. This case study demonstrates the importance of combining all aspects of history, physical examination, ECG, and imaging modalities to evaluate cardiac anatomy and function in young athletes with complex CHD. © 2017, Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  16. Genetic aspect of Alzheimer disease: Results of complex segregation analysis

    SciT

    Sadonvick, A.D.; Lee, I.M.L.; Bailey-Wilson, J.E.

    1994-09-01

    The study was designed to evaluate the possibility that a single major locus will explain the segregation of Alzheimer disease (AD). The data were from the population-based AD Genetic Database and consisted of 402 consecutive, unrelated probands, diagnosed to have either `probable` or `autopsy confirmed` AD and their 2,245 first-degree relatives. In this analysis, a relative was considered affected with AD only when there were sufficient medical/autopsy data to support diagnosis of AD being the most likely cause of the dementia. Transmission probability models allowing for a genotype-dependent and logistically distributed age-of-onset were used. The program REGTL in the S.A.G.E.more » computer program package was used for a complex segregation analysis. The models included correction for single ascertainment. Regressive familial effects were not estimated. The data were analyzed to test for single major locus (SML), random transmission and no transmission (environmental) hypotheses. The results of the complex segregation analysis showed that (1) the SML was the best fit, and (2) the non-genetic models could be rejected.« less

  17. Zebra Mussel Chemical Control Guide, Version 2.0

    DTIC Science & Technology

    2015-07-01

    delivery systems, including potable water treatment, agriculture, industry, power generation, and fire protection. Since this invasive organism’s...delivery systems, including potable water treatment, agriculture, industry, power generation, and fire protection (Mackie and Claudi 2010). Zebra mussels...generators, pipes, valves, sensing equipment (level, flow, and pressure) and fire protection (Mackie and Claudi 2010; Prescott et al. 2014). Other USACE

  18. Skin-deep diagnosis: affective bias and zebra retreat complicating the diagnosis of systemic sclerosis.

    PubMed

    Miller, Chad S

    2013-01-01

    Nearly half of medical errors can be attributed to an error of clinical reasoning or decision making. It is estimated that the correct diagnosis is missed or delayed in between 5% and 14% of acute hospital admissions. Through understanding why and how physicians make these errors, it is hoped that strategies can be developed to decrease the number of these errors. In the present case, a patient presented with dyspnea, gastrointestinal symptoms and weight loss; the diagnosis was initially missed when the treating physicians took mental short cuts and used heuristics as in this case. Heuristics have an inherent bias that can lead to faulty reasoning or conclusions, especially in complex or difficult cases. Affective bias, which is the overinvolvement of emotion in clinical decision making, limited the available information for diagnosis because of the hesitancy to acquire a full history and perform a complete physical examination in this patient. Zebra retreat, another type of bias, is when a rare diagnosis figures prominently on the differential diagnosis but the physician retreats for various reasons. Zebra retreat also factored in the delayed diagnosis. Through the description of these clinical reasoning errors in an actual case, it is hoped that future errors can be prevented or inspiration for additional research in this area will develop.

  19. Juvenile zebra finches learn the underlying structural regularities of their fathers’ song

    PubMed Central

    Menyhart, Otília; Kolodny, Oren; Goldstein, Michael H.; DeVoogd, Timothy J.; Edelman, Shimon

    2015-01-01

    Natural behaviors, such as foraging, tool use, social interaction, birdsong, and language, exhibit branching sequential structure. Such structure should be learnable if it can be inferred from the statistics of early experience. We report that juvenile zebra finches learn such sequential structure in song. Song learning in finches has been extensively studied, and it is generally believed that young males acquire song by imitating tutors (Zann, 1996). Variability in the order of elements in an individual’s mature song occurs, but the degree to which variation in a zebra finch’s song follows statistical regularities has not been quantified, as it has typically been dismissed as production error (Sturdy et al., 1999). Allowing for the possibility that such variation in song is non-random and learnable, we applied a novel analytical approach, based on graph-structured finite-state grammars, to each individual’s full corpus of renditions of songs. This method does not assume syllable-level correspondence between individuals. We find that song variation can be described by probabilistic finite-state graph grammars that are individually distinct, and that the graphs of juveniles are more similar to those of their fathers than to those of other adult males. This grammatical learning is a new parallel between birdsong and language. Our method can be applied across species and contexts to analyze complex variable learned behaviors, as distinct as foraging, tool use, and language. PMID:26005428

  20. Statistics and classification of the microwave zebra patterns associated with solar flares

    SciT

    Tan, Baolin; Tan, Chengming; Zhang, Yin

    2014-01-10

    The microwave zebra pattern (ZP) is the most interesting, intriguing, and complex spectral structure frequently observed in solar flares. A comprehensive statistical study will certainly help us to understand the formation mechanism, which is not exactly clear now. This work presents a comprehensive statistical analysis of a big sample with 202 ZP events collected from observations at the Chinese Solar Broadband Radio Spectrometer at Huairou and the Ondŕejov Radiospectrograph in the Czech Republic at frequencies of 1.00-7.60 GHz from 2000 to 2013. After investigating the parameter properties of ZPs, such as the occurrence in flare phase, frequency range, polarization degree,more » duration, etc., we find that the variation of zebra stripe frequency separation with respect to frequency is the best indicator for a physical classification of ZPs. Microwave ZPs can be classified into three types: equidistant ZPs, variable-distant ZPs, and growing-distant ZPs, possibly corresponding to mechanisms of the Bernstein wave model, whistler wave model, and double plasma resonance model, respectively. This statistical classification may help us to clarify the controversies between the existing various theoretical models and understand the physical processes in the source regions.« less

  1. Copper in indigenous and transplanted zebra mussels in relation to changing water concentrations and body weight

    SciT

    Mersch, J.; Wagner, P.; Pihan, J.C.

    Zebra mussels, Dreissena polymorpha, were collected monthly from a copper-contaminated reservoir over a period of nearly 3 years. Copper concentrations in the organisms showed marked fluctuations reflecting changes in the water contamination. Bioconcentration patterns were influenced by the specific capacity of this sentinel organism to biologically integrate the continuously evolving water pollution; the sampling pattern, which inevitably introduced a certain subjectivity into monitoring results; and weight changes in the animals within the yearly cycle. Consequently, the successive monthly indications obtained with the zebra mussels provided a current biological assessment of a complex dynamic contamination situation. In a second experiment, cagedmore » mussels from three different populations were transferred for 3 months into the reservoir and sampled on six occasions. Mortality rates, attachment capacity, and a condition index revealed no substantial fitness disturbances in the transplanted organisms. Differences in dry weight throughout the experiment were attributable to the initial characteristics of each population. The influence of body mass on monitoring results was eliminated by replacing copper concentrations ({micro}g/g dry weight) with copper burdens ({micro}g/specimen). In terms of copper burdens, the three transplanted populations exhibited very similar metal patterns. Moderate quantitative differences between introduced and indigenous populations were interpreted as the result of physiological adaptation of the indigenous mussels to their contaminated environment. This study showed that the transfer technique with D. polymorpha is a useful tool for active biomonitoring programs.« less

  2. Self-association of Gata1 enhances transcriptional activity in vivo in zebra fish embryos.

    PubMed

    Nishikawa, Keizo; Kobayashi, Makoto; Masumi, Atsuko; Lyons, Susan E; Weinstein, Brant M; Liu, P Paul; Yamamoto, Masayuki

    2003-11-01

    Gata1 is a prototype transcription factor that regulates hematopoiesis, yet the molecular mechanisms by which Gata1 transactivates its target genes in vivo remain unclear. We previously showed, in transgenic zebra fish, that Gata1 autoregulates its own expression. In this study, we characterized the molecular mechanisms for this autoregulation by using mutations in the Gata1 protein which impair autoregulation. Of the tested mutations, replacement of six lysine residues with alanine (Gata1KA6), which inhibited self-association activity of Gata1, reduced the Gata1-dependent induction of reporter gene expression driven by the zebra fish gata1 hematopoietic regulatory domain (gata1 HRD). Furthermore, overexpression of wild-type Gata1 but not Gata1KA6 rescued the expression of Gata1 downstream genes in vlad tepes, a germ line gata1 mutant fish. Interestingly, both GATA sites in the double GATA motif in gata1 HRD were critical for the promoter activity and for binding of the self-associated Gata1 complex, whereas only the 3'-GATA site was required for Gata1 monomer binding. These results thus provide the first in vivo evidence that the ability of Gata1 to self-associate critically contributes to the autoregulation of the gata1 gene.

  3. A Non-Degenerate Code of Deleterious Variants in Mendelian Loci Contributes to Complex Disease Risk

    PubMed Central

    Blair, David R.; Lyttle, Christopher S.; Mortensen, Jonathan M.; Bearden, Charles F.; Jensen, Anders Boeck; Khiabanian, Hossein; Melamed, Rachel; Rabadan, Raul; Bernstam, Elmer V.; Brunak, Søren; Jensen, Lars Juhl; Nicolae, Dan; Shah, Nigam H.; Grossman, Robert L.; Cox, Nancy J.; White, Kevin P.; Rzhetsky, Andrey

    2013-01-01

    Summary Whereas countless highly penetrant variants have been associated with Mendelian disorders, the genetic etiologies underlying complex diseases remain largely unresolved. Here, we examine the extent to which Mendelian variation contributes to complex disease risk by mining the medical records of over 110 million patients. We detect thousands of associations between Mendelian and complex diseases, revealing a non-degenerate, phenotypic code that links each complex disorder to a unique collection of Mendelian loci. Using genome-wide association results, we demonstrate that common variants associated with complex diseases are enriched in the genes indicated by this “Mendelian code.” Finally, we detect hundreds of comorbidity associations among Mendelian disorders, and we use probabilistic genetic modeling to demonstrate that Mendelian variants likely contribute non-additively to the risk for a subset of complex diseases. Overall, this study illustrates a complementary approach for mapping complex disease loci and provides unique predictions concerning the etiologies of specific diseases. PMID:24074861

  4. Form of Dietary Methylmercury does not Affect Total Mercury Accumulation in the Tissues of Zebra Finch.

    PubMed

    Varian-Ramos, Claire W; Whitney, Margaret; Rice, Gary W; Cristol, Daniel A

    2017-07-01

    Exposure to mercury in humans, other mammals, and birds is primarily dietary, with mercury in the methylated form and bound to cysteine in the tissues of prey items. Yet dosing studies are generally carried out using methylmercury chloride. Here we tested whether the accumulation of total mercury in zebra finch blood, egg, muscle, liver, kidney or brain differed depending on whether dietary mercury was complexed with chloride or cysteine. We found no effect of form of mercury on tissue accumulation. Some previous studies have found lower accumulation of mercury in tissues of animals fed complexed mercury. Much remains to be understood about what happens to ingested mercury once it enters the intestines, but our results suggest that dietary studies using methylmercury chloride in birds will produce similar tissue accumulation levels to those using methylmercury cysteine.

  5. Predictive genetic testing for complex diseases: a public health perspective

    PubMed Central

    Marzuillo, C.; De Vito, C.; D’Andrea, E.; Rosso, A.

    2014-01-01

    From a public health perspective, systematic, evidence-based technology assessments and economic evaluations are needed to guide the incorporation of genomics into clinical and public health practice. However, scientific evidence on the effectiveness of predictive genetic tests is difficult to obtain. This review first highlights the similarities and differences between traditional screening tests and predictive genetic testing for complex diseases and goes on to describe frameworks for the evaluation of genetic testing that have been developed in recent years providing some evidence that currently genetic tests are not used in an appropriate way. Nevertheless, evidence-based recommendations are already available for some genomic applications that can reduce morbidity and mortality and many more are expected to emerge over the next decade. The time is now ripe for the introduction of a range of genetic tests into healthcare practice, but this will require the development of specific health policies, proper public health evaluations, organizational changes within the healthcare systems, capacity building among the healthcare workforce and the education of the public. PMID:24049051

  6. The effect of zebra mussel consumption on growth of freshwater drum in Lake Erie

    French, John R. P.; Bur, Michael T.

    1996-01-01

    We examined food habits and scale annuli of freshwater drum (Aplodinotus grunniens) from western Lake Erie to determine whether increasing predation on zebra mussels (Dreissena polymorpha) had affected growth of freshwater drum. The volume of zebra mussels in drum guts was greater in older fish. Growth of age classes 3–4, which consumed few zebra mussels, was greater in the most productive year for zebra mussels, July 1990–August 1991, than in three prior years. The total lengths of 5-year-old drum changed little. The mean total length of 6-year-old females has declined since the zebra mussel invaded Lake Erie, even through mussels comprised more than two-thirds of gut samples in these fish. These studies suggest that zebra mussels may not benefit freshwater drum when serving as a staple in the diet. PDF

  7. Predation on exotic zebra mussels by native fishes: Effects on predator and prey

    Magoulick, D.D.; Lewis, L.C.

    2002-01-01

    1. Exotic zebra mussels, Dreissena polymorpha, occur in southern U.S. waterways in high densities, but little is known about the interaction between native fish predators and zebra mussels. Previous studies have suggested that exotic zebra mussels are low profitability prey items and native vertebrate predators are unlikely to reduce zebra mussel densities. We tested these hypotheses by observing prey use of fishes, determining energy content of primary prey species of fishes, and conducting predator exclusion experiments in Lake Dardanelle, Arkansas. 2. Zebra mussels were the primary prey eaten by 52.9% of blue catfish, Ictalurus furcatus; 48.2% of freshwater drum, Aplodinotus grunniens; and 100% of adult redear sunfish, Lepomis microlophus. Blue catfish showed distinct seasonal prey shifts, feeding on zebra mussels in summer and shad, Dorosoma spp., during winter. Energy content (joules g-1) of blue catfish prey (threadfin shad, Dorosoma petenense; gizzard shad, D. cepedianum; zebra mussels; and asiatic clams, Corbicula fluminea) showed a significant species by season interaction, but shad were always significantly greater in energy content than bivalves examined as either ash-free dry mass or whole organism dry mass. Fish predators significantly reduced densities of large zebra mussels (>5 mm length) colonising clay tiles in the summers of 1997 and 1998, but predation effects on small zebra mussels (???5 mm length) were less clear. 3. Freshwater drum and redear sunfish process bivalve prey by crushing shells and obtain low amounts of higher-energy food (only the flesh), whereas blue catfish lack a shell-crushing apparatus and ingest large amounts of low-energy food per unit time (bivalves with their shells). Blue catfish appeared to select the abundant zebra mussel over the more energetically rich shad during summer, then shifted to shad during winter when shad experienced temperature-dependent stress and mortality. Native fish predators can suppress adult zebra

  8. Do zebra mussels (Dreissena polymorpha) alter lake water chemistry in a way that favours Microcystis growth?

    PubMed

    Bykova, Olga; Laursen, Andrew; Bostan, Vadim; Bautista, Joseph; McCarthy, Lynda

    2006-12-01

    This study examined possible relationships between the presence of zebra mussels (Dreissena polymorpha) and Microcystis spp. abundance. Experiments were conducted in 12 microcosms designed to mimic shallow lake ecosystems. Fresh, aerated water with phytoplankton (pseudokirchneriella spp. and Microcystis spp.) was pumped into each microcosm daily to ensure zebra mussels were exposed to oxygen and food. Microcosms containing zebra mussels experienced significantly higher fluxes of nitrate (p=0.019) and lower fluxes of ortho-phosphate (p=0.047) into sediments. In a second experiment, water column nutrient concentrations were compared in microcosms with and without live zebra mussels. Consistent with results of the previous experiment, microcosms with zebra mussels had significantly less nitrate (p=0.023) and organic nitrogen (p=0.003) in the water column, while ammonium (p=0.074), phosphate (p=0.491), and dissolved organic carbon (p=0.820) in the water column were not different between microcosms with or without zebra mussels. Microcosms with zebra mussels also experienced a reduction in green algae (pseudokirchneriella) (p<0.001) and an increase in abundance of Microcystis (p<0.001) relative to microcosms without zebra mussels. In an experiment without zebra mussels, nutrient ratios (N/P) were manipulated to determine potential links between N/P and relative abundance of each phytoplankton. Manipulation of N/P was intended to mimic differences observed in microcosms with and without zebra mussels in the previous experiment. Low N/P (mimicking microcosms with zebra mussels) was related to an increase in Microcystis (p<0.001) and Microcystis/Pseudokirchneriella biovolume (p<0.001). It is this shift in N/P, and possibly some level of selective feeding, that is believed to have driven changes in the relative abundance of Microcystis. In lakes invaded by zebra mussels, alterations in the processing of nitrogen and phosphorus could contribute to the re-emergence of

  9. Lesser scaup forage on zebra mussels at Cook nuclear plant, Michigan

    Mitchell, C.A.; Carlson, J.

    1993-01-01

    Nineteen of 21 Lesser Scaup (Aythya affinis) entrained while foraging at the water intake structures of Cook Nuclear Plant, Bridgman, Michigan had consumed zebra mussels (Dreissena polymorpha). The average number of zebra mussels in the upper gastrointestinal tract was 260; maximum number was 987. Migrating Lesser Scaup found this new food source during the first winter following settlement of zebra mussels on the water intake structures of the power plant.

  10. Identification of susceptible genes for complex chronic diseases based on disease risk functional SNPs and interaction networks.

    PubMed

    Li, Wan; Zhu, Lina; Huang, Hao; He, Yuehan; Lv, Junjie; Li, Weimin; Chen, Lina; He, Weiming

    2017-10-01

    Complex chronic diseases are caused by the effects of genetic and environmental factors. Single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs), one common type of genetic variations, played vital roles in diseases. We hypothesized that disease risk functional SNPs in coding regions and protein interaction network modules were more likely to contribute to the identification of disease susceptible genes for complex chronic diseases. This could help to further reveal the pathogenesis of complex chronic diseases. Disease risk SNPs were first recognized from public SNP data for coronary heart disease (CHD), hypertension (HT) and type 2 diabetes (T2D). SNPs in coding regions that were classified into nonsense and missense by integrating several SNP functional annotation databases were treated as functional SNPs. Then, regions significantly associated with each disease were screened using random permutations for disease risk functional SNPs. Corresponding to these regions, 155, 169 and 173 potential disease susceptible genes were identified for CHD, HT and T2D, respectively. A disease-related gene product interaction network in environmental context was constructed for interacting gene products of both disease genes and potential disease susceptible genes for these diseases. After functional enrichment analysis for disease associated modules, 5 CHD susceptible genes, 7 HT susceptible genes and 3 T2D susceptible genes were finally identified, some of which had pleiotropic effects. Most of these genes were verified to be related to these diseases in literature. This was similar for disease genes identified from another method proposed by Lee et al. from a different aspect. This research could provide novel perspectives for diagnosis and treatment of complex chronic diseases and susceptible genes identification for other diseases. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  11. Expression, purification, crystallization and preliminary X-ray analysis of a C-terminal fragment of the Epstein–Barr virus ZEBRA protein

    SciT

    Morand, Patrice; Laboratoire de Virologie Moléculaire et Structurale, EA 2939, Université Joseph Fourier, Grenoble; Budayova-Spano, Monika

    A C-terminal fragment of the Epstein–Barr virus lytic switch protein ZEBRA has been crystallized in complex with DNA. A C-terminal fragment of the Epstein–Barr virus immediate-early transcription factor ZEBRA has been expressed as a recombinant protein in Escherichia coli and purified to homogeneity. The fragment behaves as a dimer in solution, consistent with the presence of a basic region leucine-zipper (bZIP) domain. Crystals of the fragment in complex with a DNA duplex were grown by the hanging-drop vapour-diffusion technique using polyethylene glycol 4000 and magnesium acetate as crystallization agents. Crystals diffract to better than 2.5 Å resolution using synchrotron radiationmore » (λ = 0.976 Å). Crystals belong to space group C2, with unit-cell parameters a = 94.2, b = 26.5, c = 98.1 Å, β = 103.9°.« less

  12. Switch from sexual to parthenogenetic reproduction in a zebra shark

    PubMed Central

    Dudgeon, Christine L.; Coulton, Laura; Bone, Ren; Ovenden, Jennifer R.; Thomas, Severine

    2017-01-01

    Parthenogenesis is a natural form of asexual reproduction in which embryos develop in the absence of fertilisation. Most commonly found in plants and invertebrate organisms, an increasing number of vertebrate species have recently been reported employing this reproductive strategy. Here we use DNA genotyping to report the first demonstration of an intra-individual switch from sexual to parthenogenetic reproduction in a shark species, the zebra shark Stegostoma fasciatum. A co-housed, sexually produced daughter zebra shark also commenced parthenogenetic reproduction at the onset of maturity without any prior mating. The demonstration of parthenogenesis in these two conspecific individuals with different sexual histories provides further support that elasmobranch fishes may flexibly adapt their reproductive strategy to environmental circumstances. PMID:28091617

  13. Switch from sexual to parthenogenetic reproduction in a zebra shark.

    PubMed

    Dudgeon, Christine L; Coulton, Laura; Bone, Ren; Ovenden, Jennifer R; Thomas, Severine

    2017-01-16

    Parthenogenesis is a natural form of asexual reproduction in which embryos develop in the absence of fertilisation. Most commonly found in plants and invertebrate organisms, an increasing number of vertebrate species have recently been reported employing this reproductive strategy. Here we use DNA genotyping to report the first demonstration of an intra-individual switch from sexual to parthenogenetic reproduction in a shark species, the zebra shark Stegostoma fasciatum. A co-housed, sexually produced daughter zebra shark also commenced parthenogenetic reproduction at the onset of maturity without any prior mating. The demonstration of parthenogenesis in these two conspecific individuals with different sexual histories provides further support that elasmobranch fishes may flexibly adapt their reproductive strategy to environmental circumstances.

  14. How landscape scale changes affect ecological processes in conservation areas: external factors influence land use by zebra (Equus burchelli) in the Okavango Delta.

    PubMed

    Bartlam-Brooks, Hattie L A; Bonyongo, Mpaphi C; Harris, Stephen

    2013-09-01

    Most large-bodied wildlife populations in sub-Saharan Africa only survive in conservation areas, but are continuing to decline because external changes influence ecological processes within reserves, leading to a lack of functionality. However, failure to understand how landscape scale changes influence ecological processes limits our ability to manage protected areas. We used GPS movement data to calculate dry season home ranges for 14 zebra mares in the Okavango Delta and investigated the effects of a range of landscape characteristics (number of habitat patches, mean patch shape, mean index of juxtaposition, and interspersion) on home range size. Resource utilization functions (RUF) were calculated to investigate how specific landscape characteristics affected space use. Space use by all zebra was clustered. In the wetter (Central) parts of the Delta home range size was negatively correlated with the density of habitat patches, more complex patch shapes, low juxtaposition of habitats and an increased availability of floodplain and grassland habitats. In the drier (Peripheral) parts of the Delta, higher use by zebra was also associated with a greater availability of floodplain and grassland habitats, but a lower density of patches and simpler patch shapes. The most important landscape characteristic was not consistent between zebra within the same area of the Delta, suggesting that no single foraging strategy is substantially superior to others, and so animals using different foraging strategies may all thrive. The distribution and complexity of habitat patches are crucial in determining space use by zebra. The extent and duration of seasonal flooding is the principal process affecting habitat patch characteristics in the Okavango Delta, particularly the availability of floodplains, which are the habitat at greatest risk from climate change and anthropogenic disturbance to the Okavango's catchment basin. Understanding how the factors that determine habitat

  15. IMPACT OF WATER PH ON ZEBRA MUSSEL MORTALITY

    SciT

    Daniel P. Molloy

    2002-10-15

    The experiments conducted this past quarter have suggested that the bacterium Pseudomonas fluorescens strain CL0145A is effective at killing zebra mussels throughout the entire range of pH values tested (7.2 to 8.6). Highest mortality was achieved at pH values characteristic of preferred zebra mussel waterbodies, i.e., hard waters with a range of 7.8 to 8.6. In all water types tested, however, ranging from very soft to very hard, considerable mussel kill was achieved (83 to 99% mean mortality), suggesting that regardless of the pH or hardness of the treated water, significant mussel kill can be achieved upon treatment with P.more » fluorescens strain CL0145A. These results further support the concept that this bacterium has significant potential for use as a zebra mussel control agent in power plant pipes receiving waters with a wide range of physical and chemical characteristics.« less

  16. Mortality of zebra mussel, Dreissena polymorpha, veligers during downstream transport

    Horvath, T.G.; Lamberti, G.A.

    1999-01-01

    1. Streams flowing from lakes which contain zebra mussels, Dreissena polymorpha, provide apparently suitable habitats for mussel colonization and downstream range expansion, yet most such streams contain few adult mussels. We postulated that mussel veligers experience high mortality during dispersal via downstream transport. They tested this hypothesis in Christiana Creek, a lake-outlet stream in south-western Michigan, U.S.A., in which adult mussel density declined exponentially with distance downstream. 2. A staining technique using neutral red was developed and tested to distinguish quickly live and dead veligers. Live and dead veligers were distinguishable after an exposure of fresh samples to 13.3 mg L-1 of neutral red for 3 h. 3. Neutral red was used to determine the proportion of live veligers in samples taken longitudinally along Christiana Creek. The proportion of live veligers (mean ?? SE) declined from 90 ?? 3% at the lake outlet to 40 ?? 8% 18 km downstream. 4. Veligers appear to be highly susceptible to damage by physical forces (e.g. shear), and therefore, mortality in turbulent streams could be an important mechanism limiting zebra mussel dispersal to downstream reaches. Predictions of zebra mussel spread and population growth should consider lake-stream linkages and high mortality in running waters.

  17. Laterality of suckling behaviour in three zebra species.

    PubMed

    Pluháček, Jan; Olléová, Michaela; Bartošová, Jitka; Pluháčková, Jana; Bartoš, Luděk

    2013-01-01

    Although side preference while suckling is an easily characterised lateralised behaviour, few studies have been conducted. We observed laterality in suckling behaviour in three captive zebra species to test two hypotheses: laterality affected by the foal (motor laterality) and laterality affected by the mother. In total we observed 35 foals of Grevy's, plains, and mountain zebra in two zoos and recorded 5128 successful suckling bouts and 9095 unsuccessful suckling attempts. At the population level the only factor affecting side preference of suckling bouts and attempts was the identity of the individual foal. Ten foals showed individual preferences: seven foals preferred suckling from the left side of the mother, three preferred suckling from the right side of the mother. The individual preferences increased with increasing age of the foal. Only one foal was refused more often from the opposite side than the preferred side used for suckling whereas three other foals were refused from the preferred side. Foals that preferred suckling either from left or right side were refused by the mare more often than foals which showed non-preference. Thus lateral preferences in suckling behaviour of zebra foals seem to be in line with the motor laterality hypotheses.

  18. Sex-dependent effects of nutrition on telomere dynamics in zebra finches (Taeniopygia guttata)

    PubMed Central

    Noguera, Jose C.; Metcalfe, Neil B.; Boner, Winnie; Monaghan, Pat

    2015-01-01

    At a cellular level, oxidative stress is known to increase telomere attrition, and hence cellular senescence and risk of disease. It has been proposed that dietary micronutrients play an important role in telomere protection due to their antioxidant properties. We experimentally manipulated dietary micronutrients during early life in zebra finches (Taeniopygia guttata). We found no effects of micronutrient intake on telomere loss during chick growth. However, females given a diet high in micronutrients during sexual maturation showed reduced telomere loss; there was no such effect in males. These results suggest that micronutrients may influence rates of cellular senescence, but differences in micronutrient requirement and allocation strategies, probably linked to the development of sexual coloration, may underlie sex differences in response. PMID:25716087

  19. Cognition Enhancing Activity of Sulforaphane Against Scopolamine Induced Cognitive Impairment in Zebra Fish (Danio rerio).

    PubMed

    Rajesh, Venugopalan; Ilanthalir, Sakthivel

    2016-10-01

    Several epidemiological studies have shown that consumption of large quantities of vegetables especially cruciferous vegetables (Broccoli and Brussels sprouts) can protect against chronic diseases. Sulforaphane, an isothiocynate found in cruciferous vegetables has been demonstrated to have neuroprotective effects in several experimental paradigms. This study was undertaken to examine the effect of sulforaphane on cognitive impairment in zebra fish model using a novel method of fear conditioning. Initially, the normal behaviour of zebra fishes was studied in light-dark tank for 10 min daily for 10 days. Fishes were then divided into seven groups of twelve in each. Group I served as normal, group II served as fear conditioned control, group III and group IV were sulforaphane (25 µM/L) and piracetam (200 mg/L) treated respectively. Group V served as scopolamine (400 µM/L) induced memory impairment fishes. Group VI and VII were sulforaphane (25 µM/L) and piracetam (200 mg/L) treated scopolamine induced memory impairment groups respectively. In normal behavioural analysis, fishes preferred to stay in dark compartment. The average number of entries into the dark and time spent in dark were significantly more. Fishes in group II to VII were individually subjected to fear conditioning passive avoidance task and evaluated for learned task memory. It was observed that the average number of entries into dark and time spent in dark were significantly decreased. After exposure to respective treatment fishes in group III to VII were subjected to cognitive evaluation. There was no significant difference in cognition of group III and IV fishes exposed to sulforaphane and piracetam alone respectively. Fishes exposed to scopolamine showed a significant cognitive impairment. Sulforaphane exposure prior to scopolamine significantly retained the memory of learned task. These findings suggest that sulforaphane might be a promising therapeutic agent for cognitive enhancement in

  20. The disease complex of the gypsy moth. 1. Major components

    R.W. Campbell; J.D. Podgwaite

    1971-01-01

    A study was undertaken to elucidate the impact of the various components of disease on natural populations of the gypsy moth, Porthetria dispar. Diseased larvae from both sparse and dense populations were examined and categorized on the basis of etiologic and nonetiologic mortality factors. Results indicated a significantly higher incidence of...

  1. Navigating complexity to breed disease-resistant crops

    Crop losses due to disease constitute a burden to global food security and agricultural sustainability. The use of genetic resistance is an environmentally-friendly way to reduce these losses. This paper considers the insights derived from various lines of research on disease resistance and manageme...

  2. “Bird Song Metronomics”: Isochronous Organization of Zebra Finch Song Rhythm

    PubMed Central

    Norton, Philipp; Scharff, Constance

    2016-01-01

    The human capacity for speech and vocal music depends on vocal imitation. Songbirds, in contrast to non-human primates, share this vocal production learning with humans. The process through which birds and humans learn many of their vocalizations as well as the underlying neural system exhibit a number of striking parallels and have been widely researched. In contrast, rhythm, a key feature of language, and music, has received surprisingly little attention in songbirds. Investigating temporal periodicity in bird song has the potential to inform the relationship between neural mechanisms and behavioral output and can also provide insight into the biology and evolution of musicality. Here we present a method to analyze birdsong for an underlying rhythmic regularity. Using the intervals from one note onset to the next as input, we found for each bird an isochronous sequence of time stamps, a “signal-derived pulse,” or pulseS, of which a subset aligned with all note onsets of the bird's song. Fourier analysis corroborated these results. To determine whether this finding was just a byproduct of the duration of notes and intervals typical for zebra finches but not dependent on the individual duration of elements and the sequence in which they are sung, we compared natural songs to models of artificial songs. Note onsets of natural song deviated from the pulseS significantly less than those of artificial songs with randomized note and gap durations. Thus, male zebra finch song has the regularity required for a listener to extract a perceived pulse (pulseP), as yet untested. Strikingly, in our study, pulsesS that best fit note onsets often also coincided with the transitions between sub-note elements within complex notes, corresponding to neuromuscular gestures. Gesture durations often equaled one or more pulseS periods. This suggests that gesture duration constitutes the basic element of the temporal hierarchy of zebra finch song rhythm, an interesting parallel to the

  3. 78 FR 58311 - Complex Issues in Developing Drug and Biological Products for Rare Diseases; Public Workshop...

    Federal Register 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014

    2013-09-23

    ...] Complex Issues in Developing Drug and Biological Products for Rare Diseases; Public Workshop; Request for... Issues in Developing Drug and Biological Products for Rare Diseases.'' The purpose of the public workshop is twofold: To discuss complex issues in clinical trials for developing drug and biological products...

  4. Endophenotype Network Models: Common Core of Complex Diseases

    PubMed Central

    Ghiassian, Susan Dina; Menche, Jörg; Chasman, Daniel I.; Giulianini, Franco; Wang, Ruisheng; Ricchiuto, Piero; Aikawa, Masanori; Iwata, Hiroshi; Müller, Christian; Zeller, Tania; Sharma, Amitabh; Wild, Philipp; Lackner, Karl; Singh, Sasha; Ridker, Paul M.; Blankenberg, Stefan; Barabási, Albert-László; Loscalzo, Joseph

    2016-01-01

    Historically, human diseases have been differentiated and categorized based on the organ system in which they primarily manifest. Recently, an alternative view is emerging that emphasizes that different diseases often have common underlying mechanisms and shared intermediate pathophenotypes, or endo(pheno)types. Within this framework, a specific disease’s expression is a consequence of the interplay between the relevant endophenotypes and their local, organ-based environment. Important examples of such endophenotypes are inflammation, fibrosis, and thrombosis and their essential roles in many developing diseases. In this study, we construct endophenotype network models and explore their relation to different diseases in general and to cardiovascular diseases in particular. We identify the local neighborhoods (module) within the interconnected map of molecular components, i.e., the subnetworks of the human interactome that represent the inflammasome, thrombosome, and fibrosome. We find that these neighborhoods are highly overlapping and significantly enriched with disease-associated genes. In particular they are also enriched with differentially expressed genes linked to cardiovascular disease (risk). Finally, using proteomic data, we explore how macrophage activation contributes to our understanding of inflammatory processes and responses. The results of our analysis show that inflammatory responses initiate from within the cross-talk of the three identified endophenotypic modules. PMID:27278246

  5. Endophenotype Network Models: Common Core of Complex Diseases

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ghiassian, Susan Dina; Menche, Jörg; Chasman, Daniel I.; Giulianini, Franco; Wang, Ruisheng; Ricchiuto, Piero; Aikawa, Masanori; Iwata, Hiroshi; Müller, Christian; Zeller, Tania; Sharma, Amitabh; Wild, Philipp; Lackner, Karl; Singh, Sasha; Ridker, Paul M.; Blankenberg, Stefan; Barabási, Albert-László; Loscalzo, Joseph

    2016-06-01

    Historically, human diseases have been differentiated and categorized based on the organ system in which they primarily manifest. Recently, an alternative view is emerging that emphasizes that different diseases often have common underlying mechanisms and shared intermediate pathophenotypes, or endo(pheno)types. Within this framework, a specific disease’s expression is a consequence of the interplay between the relevant endophenotypes and their local, organ-based environment. Important examples of such endophenotypes are inflammation, fibrosis, and thrombosis and their essential roles in many developing diseases. In this study, we construct endophenotype network models and explore their relation to different diseases in general and to cardiovascular diseases in particular. We identify the local neighborhoods (module) within the interconnected map of molecular components, i.e., the subnetworks of the human interactome that represent the inflammasome, thrombosome, and fibrosome. We find that these neighborhoods are highly overlapping and significantly enriched with disease-associated genes. In particular they are also enriched with differentially expressed genes linked to cardiovascular disease (risk). Finally, using proteomic data, we explore how macrophage activation contributes to our understanding of inflammatory processes and responses. The results of our analysis show that inflammatory responses initiate from within the cross-talk of the three identified endophenotypic modules.

  6. Mitigation of unionid mortality caused by zebra mussel infestation: cleaning of unionids

    Schloesser, Don W.

    1996-01-01

    Exotic zebra mussels Dreissena polymorpha have infested and caused mortality of native unionids in the Great Lakes since 1986; no other such parasitism of native unionids occurs in North America. Survival of unionids threatened by zebra mussel infestation was tested by suspending uncleaned and cleaned unionids in nearshore waters of western Lake Erie. Survival was determined, and newly settled zebra mussels were removed from clean unionids at eight intervals that ranged from 21 d to 77 d between 5 July 1990 and 3 July 1991. After 1 year, survival rates of uncleaned and cleaned unionids were 0% and 42%, respectively. Of the 10 species examined, only indivduals from 3 species (Amblema plicata plicata, Fusconaia flava, and Quadrula quadrula) survived 1 year. These species have relatively thick shells, which may have contributed to their survival. Removal of newly settled zebra mussels may be important to unionid survival because 98% of the zebra mussels removed after the initial cleaning were small mussels (<10 mm long) that could rapidly grow and cover unionids. At present, we do not know how zebra mussels cause mortality of unionids, but the removal of zebra mussels from unionids is the only method known that successfully reduces unionid mortality in waters colonized by zebra mussels.

  7. Are Horses Like Zebras, or Vice Versa? Children's Sensitivity to the Asymmetries of Directional Comparisons

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Chestnut, Eleanor K.; Markman, Ellen M.

    2016-01-01

    Adults exhibit strong preferences when framing symmetrical relations. Adults prefer, for example, "A zebra is like a horse" to "A horse is like a zebra," and "The bicycle is near the building" to "The building is near the bicycle." This is because directional syntax requires more typical or prominent items…

  8. Effects of shell morphology on mechanics of zebra and quagga mussel locomotion

    S. M. Peyer; J. C. Hermanson; C. E. Lee

    2011-01-01

    Although zebra mussels (Dreissena polymorpha) initially colonized shallow habitats within the North American Great Lakes, quagga mussels (Dreissena bugensis) are becoming dominant in both shallow- and deep-water habitats. Shell morphology differs among zebra, shallow quagga and deep quagga mussels but functional consequences of...

  9. LC-MS Analysis of Phenolic Compounds in Tubers Showing Zebra Chip Symptoms

    A new potato disorder called zebra chip (ZC) has been identified in the United States and has been especially problematic in Texas where substantial economic losses have been incurred. Upon frying, ZC tubers develop a dark “zebra chip” pattern of discoloration. LC-MS analysis of symptomatic tubers...

  10. Localization and Spreading of Diseases in Complex Networks

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Goltsev, A. V.; Dorogovtsev, S. N.; Oliveira, J. G.; Mendes, J. F. F.

    2012-09-01

    Using the susceptible-infected-susceptible model on unweighted and weighted networks, we consider the disease localization phenomenon. In contrast to the well-recognized point of view that diseases infect a finite fraction of vertices right above the epidemic threshold, we show that diseases can be localized on a finite number of vertices, where hubs and edges with large weights are centers of localization. Our results follow from the analysis of standard models of networks and empirical data for real-world networks.

  11. Complex genetic diseases: controversy over the Croesus code.

    PubMed

    Wright, A F; Hastie, N D

    2001-01-01

    The polarization of views on how best to exploit new information from the Human Genome Project for medicine reflects our ignorance of the genetic architecture underlying common diseases: are susceptibility alleles common or rare, neutral or deleterious, few or many? Single-nucleotide polymorphism (SNP) technology is almost in place to dissect such diseases and to create a personalized medicine, but success is critically dependent on the biology and "Nature to be commanded must be obeyed" (Francis Bacon, 1620, Novum Organum).

  12. Preference of redear sunfish on zebra mussels and rams-horn snails

    French, John R. P.; Morgan, Michael N.

    1995-01-01

    We tested prey preferences of adult (200- to 222-mm long) redear sunfish (Lepomis microlophus) on two size classes of zebra mussels (Dreissena polymorpha) and two-ridge rams-horns (Helisoma anceps) in experimental aquaria. We also tested physical limitations on consuming these mollusks and determined prey bioenergetic profitability. Redear sunfish strongly preferred rams-horns over zebra mussels, but they displayed no size preference for either prey. Ingestion was not physically limited since both prey species up to 15-mm long fit within the pharyngeal gapes of redear sunfish. Rams-horns were more bioenergetically profitable than zebra mussels and ingestion of rams-horn shell fragments was about three times less than zebra mussels. Rams-horns were somewhat more resistant to shell-crushing, but all size ranges of both prey species tested were crushable by redear sunfish. These studies suggested that the redear sunfish should not be considered a panacea for biological control of zebra mussels.

  13. The use of positive reinforcement in training zebra sharks (Stegostoma fasciatum).

    PubMed

    Marranzino, Ashley

    2013-01-01

    Positive reinforcement training (PRT) was used on 4 adult zebra sharks, Stegostoma fasciatum, housed at the Downtown Aquarium, Denver, to determine the ability of zebra sharks to become desensitized to various stimuli associated with veterinary procedures. One male and 3 female sharks were trained for 12 weeks. As a result of PRT, all 4 zebra sharks were desensitized to staying within a closed holding tank off of the main exhibit, the presence of multiple trainers in the closed holding tank, and tactile stimulation. One of the 4 zebra sharks was also successfully desensitized to the presence of a stretcher being brought into the holding tank. All of these procedures are common in veterinary examinations, and it is hoped that desensitization to these stimuli will reduce the stress associated with examinations. The training accomplished has allowed for easier maintenance of the zebra sharks by the aquarium staff and an improvement in the care of the sharks.

  14. Bioaccumulation of pathogenic bacteria and amoeba by zebra mussels and their presence in watercourses.

    PubMed

    Mosteo, R; Goñi, P; Miguel, N; Abadías, J; Valero, P; Ormad, M P

    2016-01-01

    Dreissena polymorpha (the zebra mussel) has been invading freshwater bodies in Europe since the beginning of the nineteenth century. Filter-feeding organisms can accumulate and concentrate both chemical and biological contaminants in their tissues. Therefore, zebra mussels are recognized as indicators of freshwater quality. In this work, the capacity of the zebra mussel to accumulate human pathogenic bacteria and protozoa has been evaluated and the sanitary risk associated with their presence in surface water has also been assessed. The results show a good correlation between the pathogenic bacteria concentration in zebra mussels and in watercourses. Zebra mussels could therefore be used as an indicator of biological contamination. The bacteria (Escherichia coli, Enterococcus spp., Pseudomonas spp., and Salmonella spp.) and parasites (Cryptosporidium oocysts and free-living amoebae) detected in these mussels reflect a potential sanitary risk in water.

  15. The role of Pyruvate Dehydrogenase Complex in cardiovascular diseases.

    PubMed

    Sun, Wanqing; Liu, Quan; Leng, Jiyan; Zheng, Yang; Li, Ji

    2015-01-15

    The regulation of mammalian myocardial carbohydrate metabolism is complex; many factors such as arterial substrate and hormone levels, coronary flow, inotropic state and the nutritional status of the tissue play a role in regulating mammalian myocardial carbohydrate metabolism. The Pyruvate Dehydrogenase Complex (PDHc), a mitochondrial matrix multienzyme complex, plays an important role in energy homeostasis in the heart by providing the link between glycolysis and the tricarboxylic acid (TCA) cycle. In TCA cycle, PDHc catalyzes the conversion of pyruvate into acetyl-CoA. This review determines that there is altered cardiac glucose in various pathophysiological states consequently causing PDC to be altered. This review further summarizes evidence for the metabolism mechanism of the heart under normal and pathological conditions including ischemia, diabetes, hypertrophy and heart failure. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  16. Calculation of genomic predicted transmitting abilities for bovine respiratory disease complex in Holsteins

    Bovine Respiratory Disease Complex is a disease that is very costly to the dairy industry. Genomic selection may be an effective tool to improve host resistance to the pathogens that cause this disease. Use of genomic predicted transmitting abilities (GPTA) for selection has had a dramatic effect on...

  17. Thousand cankers disease complex: a forest health issue across the U.S.

    Thousand Cankers Disease (TCD) is a disease complex wherein the fungus (Geosmithia morbida), is vectored by the walnut twig beetle (WTB, Pityophthorus juglandis). Disease causes mortality primarily of eastern black walnut (Juglans nigra), though other walnut species are also susceptible. Eastern bla...

  18. Study designs for identification of rare disease variants in complex diseases: the utility of family-based designs.

    PubMed

    Ionita-Laza, Iuliana; Ottman, Ruth

    2011-11-01

    The recent progress in sequencing technologies makes possible large-scale medical sequencing efforts to assess the importance of rare variants in complex diseases. The results of such efforts depend heavily on the use of efficient study designs and analytical methods. We introduce here a unified framework for association testing of rare variants in family-based designs or designs based on unselected affected individuals. This framework allows us to quantify the enrichment in rare disease variants in families containing multiple affected individuals and to investigate the optimal design of studies aiming to identify rare disease variants in complex traits. We show that for many complex diseases with small values for the overall sibling recurrence risk ratio, such as Alzheimer's disease and most cancers, sequencing affected individuals with a positive family history of the disease can be extremely advantageous for identifying rare disease variants. In contrast, for complex diseases with large values of the sibling recurrence risk ratio, sequencing unselected affected individuals may be preferable.

  19. Clan Genomics and the Complex Architecture of Human Disease

    PubMed Central

    Belmont, John W.; Boerwinkle, Eric

    2013-01-01

    Human diseases are caused by alleles that encompass the full range of variant types, from single-nucleotide changes to copy-number variants, and these variations span a broad frequency spectrum, from the very rare to the common. The picture emerging from analysis of whole-genome sequences, the 1000 Genomes Project pilot studies, and targeted genomic sequencing derived from very large sample sizes reveals an abundance of rare and private variants. One implication of this realization is that recent mutation may have a greater influence on disease susceptibility or protection than is conferred by variations that arose in distant ancestors. PMID:21962505

  20. Zebra mussel beds: an effective feeding ground for Ponto-Caspian gobies or suitable shelter for their prey?

    PubMed

    Kobak, Jarosław; Poznańska, Małgorzata; Jermacz, Łukasz; Kakareko, Tomasz; Prądzynski, Daniel; Łodygowska, Małgorzata; Montowska, Karolina; Bącela-Spychalska, Karolina

    2016-01-01

    Aggregations of the Ponto-Caspian invasive zebra mussel ( Dreissena polymorpha ) constitute a suitable habitat for macroinvertebrates, considerably increasing their abundance and providing effective antipredator protection. Thus, the overall effect of a mussel bed on particular predator species may vary from positive to negative, depending on both prey density increase and predator ability to prey in a structurally complex habitat. Alien Ponto-Caspian goby fish are likely to be facilitated when introduced into new areas by zebra mussels, provided that they are capable of utilizing mussel beds as habitat and feeding grounds. We ran laboratory experiments to find which prey (chironomid larvae) densities (from ca. 500 to 2,000 individuals m -2 ) in a mussel bed make it a more beneficial feeding ground for the racer goby Babka gymnotrachelus (RG) and western tubenose goby Proterorhinus semilunaris (WTG) compared to sandy and stone substrata (containing the basic prey density of 500 ind. m -2 ). Moreover, we checked how food availability affects habitat selection by fish. Mussel beds became more suitable for fish than alternative mineral substrata when food abundance was at least two times higher (1,000 vs. 500 ind. m -2 ), regardless of fish size and species. WTG was associated with mussel beds regardless of its size and prey density, whereas RG switched to this habitat when it became a better feeding ground than alternative substrata. Larger RG exhibited a stronger affinity for mussels than small individuals. WTG fed more efficiently from a mussel bed at high food abundances than RG. A literature review has shown that increasing chironomid density, which in our study was sufficient to make a mussel habitat an attractive feeding ground for the gobies, is commonly observed in mussel beds in the field. Therefore, we conclude that zebra mussels may positively affect the alien goby species and are likely to facilitate their establishment in novel areas, contributing to an

  1. APOC3, Coronary Disease, and Complexities of Mendelian Randomization

    PubMed Central

    Cohen, Jonathan C.; Stender, Stefan; Hobbs, Helen H.

    2014-01-01

    Two new studies report that triglyceride (TG)-lowering mutations in APOC3 reduce coronary heart disease (CHD) (Crosby et al., 2014; Jørgensen et al., 2014). Here, we explore limitations of using Mendelian randomization to evaluate CHD risk, including potential confounding by the widespread use of statin therapy. PMID:25185943

  2. APOC3, coronary disease, and complexities of Mendelian randomization.

    PubMed

    Cohen, Jonathan C; Stender, Stefan; Hobbs, Helen H

    2014-09-02

    Two new studies report that triglyceride (TG)-lowering mutations in APOC3 reduce coronary heart disease (CHD) (Crosby et al., 2014; Jørgensen et al., 2014). Here, we explore limitations of using Mendelian randomization to evaluate CHD risk, including potential confounding by the widespread use of statin therapy. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  3. Leprosy: too complex a disease for a simple elimination paradigm.

    PubMed Central

    Lockwood, Diana N. J.; Suneetha, Sujai

    2005-01-01

    Can leprosy be eliminated? This paper considers the question against the background of the WHO programme to eliminate leprosy. In 1991 the World Health Assembly set a target of eliminating leprosy as a public health problem by 2000. Elimination was defined as reaching a prevalence of < 1 case per 10 000 people. The elimination programme has been successful in delivering highly effective antibiotic therapy worldwide. However, despite this advance, new-case detection rates remain stable in countries with the highest rates of endemic leprosy, such as Brazil and India. This suggests that infection has not been adequately controlled by antibiotics alone. Leprosy is perhaps more appropriately classed as a chronic stable disease than as an acute infectious disease responsive to elimination strategies. In many countries activities to control and treat leprosy are being integrated into the general health-care system. This reduces the stigma associated with leprosy. However, leprosy causes long-term immunological complications, disability and deformity. The health-care activities of treating and preventing disabilities need to be provided in an integrated setting. Detecting new cases and monitoring disability caused by leprosy will be a challenge. One solution is to implement long-term surveillance in selected countries with the highest rates of endemic disease so that an accurate estimate of the burden of leprosy can be determined. It is also critical that broad-based research into this challenging disease continues until the problems are truly solved. PMID:15798849

  4. Beyond disease susceptibility-Leveraging genome-wide association studies for new insights into complex disease biology.

    PubMed

    Lee, J C

    2017-12-01

    Genetic studies in complex diseases have been highly successful, but have also been largely one-dimensional: predominantly focusing on the genetic contribution to disease susceptibility. While this is undoubtedly important-indeed it is a pre-requisite for understanding the mechanisms underlying disease development-there are many other important aspects of disease biology that have received comparatively little attention. In this review, I will discuss how existing genetic data can be leveraged to provide new insights into other aspects of disease biology, why such insights could change the way we think about complex disease, and how this could provide opportunities for better therapies and/or facilitate personalised medicine. To do this, I will use the example of Crohn's disease-a chronic form of inflammatory bowel disease that has been one of the main success stories in complex disease genetics. Indeed, thanks to genetic studies, we now have a much more detailed understanding of the processes involved in Crohn's disease development, but still know relatively little about what determines the subsequent disease course (prognosis) and why this differs so considerably between individuals. I will discuss how we came to realise that genetic variation plays an important role in determining disease prognosis and how this has changed the way we think about Crohn's disease genetics. This will illustrate how phenotypic data can be used to leverage new insights from genetic data and will provide a broadly applicable framework that could yield new insights into the biology of multiple diseases. © 2017 John Wiley & Sons A/S. Published by John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  5. TDP-43/FUS in Motor Neuron Disease: Complexity and Challenges

    PubMed Central

    Mitra, Joy; Hegde, Pavana M.; Stowell, Sara E.; Liachko, Nicole F; Kraemer, Brian C.; Garruto, Ralph M.; Rao, K. S.; Hegde, Muralidhar L.

    2016-01-01

    Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS), a common motor neuron disease affecting two per 100,000 people worldwide, encompasses at least five distinct pathological subtypes, including, ALS-SOD1, ALS-C9orf72, ALS-TDP-43, ALS-FUS and Guam-ALS. The etiology of a major subset of ALS involves toxicity of the TAR DNA-binding protein-43 (TDP-43). A second RNA/DNA binding protein, fused in sarcoma/translocated in liposarcoma (FUS/TLS) has been subsequently associated with about 1% of ALS patients. While mutations in TDP-43 and FUS have been linked to ALS, the key contributing molecular mechanism(s) leading to cell death are still unclear. One unique feature of TDP-43 and FUS pathogenesis in ALS is their nuclear clearance and simultaneous cytoplasmic aggregation in affected motor neurons. Since the discoveries in the last decade implicating TDP-43 and FUS toxicity in ALS, a majority of studies have focused on their cytoplasmic aggregation and disruption of their RNA-binding functions. However, TDP-43 and FUS also bind to DNA, although the significance of their DNA binding in disease-affected neurons has been less investigated. A recent observation of accumulated genomic damage in TDP-43 and FUS-linked ALS and association of FUS with neuronal DNA damage repair pathways indicate a possible role of deregulated DNA binding function of TDP-43 and FUS in ALS. In this review, we discuss the different ALS disease subtypes, crosstalk of etiopathologies in disease progression, available animal models and their limitations, and recent advances in understanding the specific involvement of RNA/DNA binding proteins, TDP-43 and FUS, in motor neuron diseases. PMID:27693252

  6. Deciphering deterioration mechanisms of complex diseases based on the construction of dynamic networks and systems analysis

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Li, Yuanyuan; Jin, Suoqin; Lei, Lei; Pan, Zishu; Zou, Xiufen

    2015-03-01

    The early diagnosis and investigation of the pathogenic mechanisms of complex diseases are the most challenging problems in the fields of biology and medicine. Network-based systems biology is an important technique for the study of complex diseases. The present study constructed dynamic protein-protein interaction (PPI) networks to identify dynamical network biomarkers (DNBs) and analyze the underlying mechanisms of complex diseases from a systems level. We developed a model-based framework for the construction of a series of time-sequenced networks by integrating high-throughput gene expression data into PPI data. By combining the dynamic networks and molecular modules, we identified significant DNBs for four complex diseases, including influenza caused by either H3N2 or H1N1, acute lung injury and type 2 diabetes mellitus, which can serve as warning signals for disease deterioration. Function and pathway analyses revealed that the identified DNBs were significantly enriched during key events in early disease development. Correlation and information flow analyses revealed that DNBs effectively discriminated between different disease processes and that dysfunctional regulation and disproportional information flow may contribute to the increased disease severity. This study provides a general paradigm for revealing the deterioration mechanisms of complex diseases and offers new insights into their early diagnoses.

  7. Scanning electron microscopy of Strongylus spp. in zebra.

    PubMed

    Els, H J; Malan, F S; Scialdo-Krecek, R C

    1983-12-01

    The external ultrastructure of the anterior and posterior extremities of the nematodes, Strongylus asini , Strongylus vulgaris, Strongylus equinus and Strongylus edentatus, was studied with scanning electron microscopy (SEM). Fresh specimens of S. asini were collected from the caecum, ventral colon and vena portae of Equus burchelli and Equus zebra hartmannae ; S. vulgaris from the caecum, colon and arteria ileocolica of E. burchelli ; S. equinus from the ventral colon of E. z. hartmannae and S. edentatus from the caecum and ventral colon of both zebras , during surveys of parasites in zebras in the Etosha Game Reserve, South West Africa/Namibia, and the Kruger National Park, Republic of South Africa. The worms were cleaned, fixed and mounted by standard methods and photographed in a JEOL JSM - 35C scanning electron microscope (SEM) operating at 12kV . The SEM showed the following differences: the tips of the external leaf-crowns varied and were fine and delicate in S. asini , coarse and broad in S. vulgaris and, in S. equinus and S. edentatus, closely adherent, separating into single elements for half their length. The excretory pores showed only slight variation, and the morphology of the copulatory bursae did not differ from those seen with light microscopy. The genital cones differed markedly: S. asini had a ventral triangular projection and laterally 2 finger-like projections: in S. vulgaris there were numerous bosses on the lateral and ventral aspects of the cone; in S. equinus 2 finger-like processes projected laterocaudally ; and in S. edentatus 2 pairs of papilla-like processes projected laterally on the ventral aspects, and a pair of rounded projections and a pair of hair-like structures adorned the dorsal aspects.(ABSTRACT TRUNCATED AT 250 WORDS)

  8. Annually recurring parthenogenesis in a zebra shark Stegostoma fasciatum.

    PubMed

    Robinson, D P; Baverstock, W; Al-Jaru, A; Hyland, K; Khazanehdari, K A

    2011-11-01

    A zebra shark, Stegostoma fasciatum, held in captivity at the Burj Al Arab aquarium, produced embryos and pups in the absence of a male. A total of 15 pups were produced from eggs laid within the aquarium over a period of four consecutive years commencing 2007. Parthenogenesis was confirmed through DNA analysis for three pups sampled during the first two consecutive egg cycles and is presumed to be the method of reproduction responsible thereafter. © 2011 The Authors. Journal of Fish Biology © 2011 The Fisheries Society of the British Isles.

  9. Factors Affecting Zebra Mussel Kill by the Bacterium Pseudomonas fluorescens

    SciT

    Daniel P. Molloy

    2004-02-24

    The specific purpose of this research project was to identify factors that affect zebra mussel kill by the bacterium Pseudomonas fluorescens. Test results obtained during this three-year project identified the following key variables as affecting mussel kill: treatment concentration, treatment duration, mussel siphoning activity, dissolved oxygen concentration, water temperature, and naturally suspended particle load. Using this latter information, the project culminated in a series of pipe tests which achieved high mussel kill inside power plants under once-through conditions using service water in artificial pipes.

  10. In search of greener pastures: Using satellite images to predict the effects of environmental change on zebra migration

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bartlam-Brooks, Hattie L. A.; Beck, Pieter S. A.; Bohrer, Gil; Harris, Stephen

    2013-12-01

    ungulate migrations occurred in most grassland and boreal woodland ecosystems, but many have been lost due to increasing habitat loss and fragmentation. With the rate of environmental change increasing, identifying and prioritizing migration routes for conservation has taken on a new urgency. Understanding the cues that drive long-distance animal movements is critical to predicting the fate of migrations under different environmental change scenarios and how large migratory herbivores will respond to increasing resource heterogeneity and anthropogenic influences. We used an individual-based modeling approach to investigate the influence of environmental conditions, monitored using satellite data, on departure date and movement speed of migrating zebras in Botswana. Daily zebra movements between dry and rainy season ranges were annotated with coincident observations of precipitation from the Tropical Rainfall Measuring Mission data set and Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer-derived normalized difference vegetation index (NDVI). An array of increasingly complex movement models representing alternative hypotheses regarding the environmental cues and controls for movement was parameterized and tested. The best and most justified model predicted daily zebra movement as two linear functions of precipitation rate and NDVI and included a modeled departure date as a function of cumulative precipitation. The model was highly successful at replicating both the timing and pace of seven actual migrations observed using GPS telemetry (R2 = 0.914). It shows how zebras rapidly adjust their movement to changing environmental conditions during migration and are able to reverse migration to avoid adverse conditions or exploit renewed resource availability, a nomadic behavior which should lend them a degree of resilience to climate and environmental change. Our results demonstrate how competing individual-based migration models, informed by freely available satellite data

  11. Predation of the zebra mussel (Dreissena polymorpha) by freshwater drum in western Lake Erie

    French, John R. P.; Bur, Michael T.; Nalepa, Thomas F.; Schloesser, Donald W.

    1992-01-01

    Environmental and economic problems associated with the colonization of zebra mussels (Dreissena polymorpha) in western Lake Erie created a need to investigate control mechanisms. Predation by fishes is one potential means of control, but predation on zebra mussels by native fishes in Lake Erie is unknown. The freshwater drum (Aplodinotus grunniens) is the most likely fish predator since it is the only fish with pharyngeal teeth capable of crushing mollusk shells. In 1990, freshwater drum were collected in western Lake Erie from 9 sites near rocky reefs and 13 sites with silt or sand bottoms, and gut contents were examined. Predation on zebra mussels increased as drum size increased. Small drum (200-249 mm in length) fed mainly on dipterans, amphipods, and small fish; small zebra mussels (375 mm in length) fed almost exclusively on zebra mussels (seasons and locations combined). The smallest drum capable of crushing zebra mussel shells was 265 mm. Since freshwater drum over 375 mm feed heavily on zebra mussels, they may become a possible biological control mechanism for mussels in portions of North America.

  12. Occurrence of zebra mussels in near-shore areas of western Lake Erie

    Custer, Christine M.; Custer, T.W.

    1997-01-01

    Zebra mussels (Dreissena polymorpha) invaded the Great Lakes in the mid-1980s and quickly reached high densities. The objective of this study was to determine current consumption of zebra mussels by waterfowl in the Great Lakes region. Feeding Lesser Scaups (Aythya affinis), Greater Scaups (A. marila), Canvasbacks (A. valisineria), Redheads (A. americana), Buffleheads (Bucephala albeola) and Common Goldeneyes (B. clangula) were collected in western Lake Erie and in Lake St. Clair between fall and spring, 1992-1993 to determine food habits. All 10 Redheads, 97% of Lesser Scaups, 83% of Goldeneyes, 60% of Buffleheads and 9% of Canvasbacks contained one or more zebra mussels in their upper gastrointestinal tracts. The aggregate percent of zebra mussels in the diet of Lesser Scaups was higher in Lake Erie (98.6%) than in Lake St. Clair (54.4%). Zebra mussels, (aggregate percent) dominated the diet of Common Goldeneyes (79.2%) but not in Buffleheads (23.5%), Redheads (21%) or Canvasbacks (9%). Lesser Scaups from Lake Erie fed on larger zebra mussels ( = 10.7 i?? 0.66 mm SE) than did Lesser Scaups from Lake St. Clair ( = 4.4 i?? 0.22 mm). Lesser Scaups, Buffleheads and Common Goldeneyes from Lake Erie consumed zebra mussels of similar size.

  13. Complexity and diversity of gastroesophageal reflux disease phenotypes.

    PubMed

    Zentilin, Patrizia; Marabotto, Elisa; Pellegatta, Gaia; Coppo, Claudia; Furnari, Manuele; Savarino, Edoardo; Savarino, Vincenzo

    2017-09-01

    Gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD) is defined as a condition which develops when the reflux of gastric contents causes troublesome symptoms, impairs quality of life, or leads to mucosal damage or complications. There are two main phenotypic presentations of GERD, the erosive (ERD) and non-erosive reflux disease (NERD), with the latter one representing up to 70% of GERD spectrum. Moreover, patients with GERD can be clinically subdivided into two distinct syndromes: patients with esophageal and extraesophageal symptoms. The diagnosis of NERD should be supported by the evidence that symptoms are due to reflux episodes on the basis of an excess of acid into the esophagus or a positive correlation between symptoms and acid and/or weakly acidic reflux episodes as evidenced by 24-hour impedance-pH monitoring. Patients with normal esophageal acid exposure and no correlation between heartburn and any kind of chemical reflux are considered affected by functional heartburn and do not pertain to the realm of NERD. They do not usually respond to PPI therapy as further empirical criterion and are included in the large group of functional digestive disorders with the expression of altered generation or perception of symptoms at the esophageal level and can often overlap with functional dyspepsia and irritable bowel syndrome.

  14. An Ocular Protein Triad Can Classify Four Complex Retinal Diseases

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kuiper, J. J. W.; Beretta, L.; Nierkens, S.; van Leeuwen, R.; Ten Dam-van Loon, N. H.; Ossewaarde-van Norel, J.; Bartels, M. C.; de Groot-Mijnes, J. D. F.; Schellekens, P.; de Boer, J. H.; Radstake, T. R. D. J.

    2017-01-01

    Retinal diseases generally are vision-threatening conditions that warrant appropriate clinical decision-making which currently solely dependents upon extensive clinical screening by specialized ophthalmologists. In the era where molecular assessment has improved dramatically, we aimed at the identification of biomarkers in 175 ocular fluids to classify four archetypical ocular conditions affecting the retina (age-related macular degeneration, idiopathic non-infectious uveitis, primary vitreoretinal lymphoma, and rhegmatogenous retinal detachment) with one single test. Unsupervised clustering of ocular proteins revealed a classification strikingly similar to the clinical phenotypes of each disease group studied. We developed and independently validated a parsimonious model based merely on three proteins; interleukin (IL)-10, IL-21, and angiotensin converting enzyme (ACE) that could correctly classify patients with an overall accuracy, sensitivity and specificity of respectively, 86.7%, 79.4% and 92.5%. Here, we provide proof-of-concept for molecular profiling as a diagnostic aid for ophthalmologists in the care for patients with retinal conditions.

  15. Development and infectious disease in hosts with complex life cycles.

    PubMed

    Searle, Catherine L; Xie, Gisselle Yang; Blaustein, Andrew R

    2013-01-01

    Metamorphosis is often characterized by profound changes in morphology and physiology that can affect the dynamics of species interactions. For example, the interaction between a pathogen and its host may differ depending on the life stage of the host or pathogen. One pathogen that infects hosts with complex life cycles is the emerging fungal pathogen of amphibians, Batrachochytrium dendrobatidis (Bd). We sought to determine how conditions at the larval stage can affect variation in development and patterns of Bd infection across amphibian life stages. We used outdoor experimental mesocosms to simulate natural pond habitats and manipulated the presence of Bd, the larval density, and the number of host species in larvae of two co-occurring amphibian species (Rana cascadae and Pseudacris regilla). We found that infection differed between species throughout development; P. regilla consistently had higher infection severity compared to R. cascadae. Additionally, while up to 100% of larvae were infected, only 18.2% of R. cascadae and 81.5% of P. regilla were infected after metamorphosis. This indicates that amphibians have the ability to recover from Bd infection as they undergo metamorphosis. Higher larval densities in P. regilla led to a shorter larval period, and individuals with a shorter larval period had lower infection severity. This led to a trend where P. regilla larvae reared at high densities tended to have lower infection prevalence after metamorphosis. We also found that exposure to Bd increased larval mortality and prolonged the larval period in P. regilla, indicating that P. regilla are susceptible to the negative effects of Bd as larvae. This study demonstrates that host density, species composition, and pathogen exposure may all interact to influence development and infection in hosts with complex life cycles.

  16. A Quantitative Systems Pharmacology Approach to Infer Pathways Involved in Complex Disease Phenotypes.

    PubMed

    Schurdak, Mark E; Pei, Fen; Lezon, Timothy R; Carlisle, Diane; Friedlander, Robert; Taylor, D Lansing; Stern, Andrew M

    2018-01-01

    Designing effective therapeutic strategies for complex diseases such as cancer and neurodegeneration that involve tissue context-specific interactions among multiple gene products presents a major challenge for precision medicine. Safe and selective pharmacological modulation of individual molecular entities associated with a disease often fails to provide efficacy in the clinic. Thus, development of optimized therapeutic strategies for individual patients with complex diseases requires a more comprehensive, systems-level understanding of disease progression. Quantitative systems pharmacology (QSP) is an approach to drug discovery that integrates computational and experimental methods to understand the molecular pathogenesis of a disease at the systems level more completely. Described here is the chemogenomic component of QSP for the inference of biological pathways involved in the modulation of the disease phenotype. The approach involves testing sets of compounds of diverse mechanisms of action in a disease-relevant phenotypic assay, and using the mechanistic information known for the active compounds, to infer pathways and networks associated with the phenotype. The example used here is for monogenic Huntington's disease (HD), which due to the pleiotropic nature of the mutant phenotype has a complex pathogenesis. The overall approach, however, is applicable to any complex disease.

  17. DISEASE COMPLEXITY IN A DECLINING ALASKAN MUSKOX (OVIBOS MOSCHATUS) POPULATION.

    PubMed

    Afema, Josephine A; Beckmen, Kimberlee B; Arthur, Stephen M; Huntington, Kathy Burek; Mazet, Jonna A K

    2017-04-01

    The muskox ( Ovibos moschatus ) population inhabiting the eastern North Slope (ENS) of Alaska, US declined dramatically during 1999-2006, whereas populations in western Alaska (WA) were stable or increasing. To understand morbidity and mortality factors contributing to the decline, Alaska Department of Fish and Game conducted pathologic investigations of carcasses from 2005 until 2008. Additionally, archived sera from both ENS and WA muskoxen collected during 1984-92, before the documented beginning of the ENS decline; sera collected during 2000, near the beginning of the decline; and contemporary sera (from live capture-release, adult females) collected during 2006, 2007, and 2008 were analyzed to determine whether prevalence of antibody to potential pathogens differed in the two areas or changed over time. The pathogens investigated were those that were believed could cause lameness or poor reproduction or adversely affect general health. Furthermore, trace mineral levels, hemograms, and gastrointestinal parasites were evaluated in live adult females captured 2006-08. Pathologic investigations identified several comorbid conditions, including predation, polyarthritis caused by or consistent with Chlamydophila spp. infection, hoof lesions, copper deficiency, contagious ecthyma, verminous pneumonia, hepatic lipidosis suggestive of negative energy balance, and bacterial bronchopneumonia due to Trueperella pyogenes and Bibersteinia trehalosi . Pathogens suspected to be newly introduced in the ENS muskox population on the basis of serologic detection include bovine viral diarrhea, respiratory syncytial virus, Chlamydophila spp., Brucella spp., Coxiella burnetii , and Leptospira spp., whereas parainfluenza virus-3 antibody prevalence has increased in the WA population. Although multiple disease syndromes were identified that contributed to mortality and, in combination, likely limited the ENS muskox population, further holistic investigations of disease agents, trace

  18. Systems Pharmacology Dissecting Holistic Medicine for Treatment of Complex Diseases: An Example Using Cardiocerebrovascular Diseases Treated by TCM.

    PubMed

    Wang, Yonghua; Zheng, Chunli; Huang, Chao; Li, Yan; Chen, Xuetong; Wu, Ziyin; Wang, Zhenzhong; Xiao, Wei; Zhang, Boli

    2015-01-01

    Holistic medicine is an interdisciplinary field of study that integrates all types of biological information (protein, small molecules, tissues, organs, external environmental signals, etc.) to lead to predictive and actionable models for health care and disease treatment. Despite the global and integrative character of this discipline, a comprehensive picture of holistic medicine for the treatment of complex diseases is still lacking. In this study, we develop a novel systems pharmacology approach to dissect holistic medicine in treating cardiocerebrovascular diseases (CCDs) by TCM (traditional Chinese medicine). Firstly, by applying the TCM active ingredients screened out by a systems-ADME process, we explored and experimentalized the signed drug-target interactions for revealing the pharmacological actions of drugs at a molecule level. Then, at a/an tissue/organ level, the drug therapeutic mechanisms were further investigated by a target-organ location method. Finally, a translational integrating pathway approach was applied to extract the diseases-therapeutic modules for understanding the complex disease and its therapy at systems level. For the first time, the feature of the drug-target-pathway-organ-cooperations for treatment of multiple organ diseases in holistic medicine was revealed, facilitating the development of novel treatment paradigm for complex diseases in the future.

  19. Systems Pharmacology Dissecting Holistic Medicine for Treatment of Complex Diseases: An Example Using Cardiocerebrovascular Diseases Treated by TCM

    PubMed Central

    Wang, Yonghua; Zheng, Chunli; Huang, Chao; Li, Yan; Chen, Xuetong; Wu, Ziyin; Wang, Zhenzhong; Xiao, Wei; Zhang, Boli

    2015-01-01

    Holistic medicine is an interdisciplinary field of study that integrates all types of biological information (protein, small molecules, tissues, organs, external environmental signals, etc.) to lead to predictive and actionable models for health care and disease treatment. Despite the global and integrative character of this discipline, a comprehensive picture of holistic medicine for the treatment of complex diseases is still lacking. In this study, we develop a novel systems pharmacology approach to dissect holistic medicine in treating cardiocerebrovascular diseases (CCDs) by TCM (traditional Chinese medicine). Firstly, by applying the TCM active ingredients screened out by a systems-ADME process, we explored and experimentalized the signed drug-target interactions for revealing the pharmacological actions of drugs at a molecule level. Then, at a/an tissue/organ level, the drug therapeutic mechanisms were further investigated by a target-organ location method. Finally, a translational integrating pathway approach was applied to extract the diseases-therapeutic modules for understanding the complex disease and its therapy at systems level. For the first time, the feature of the drug-target-pathway-organ-cooperations for treatment of multiple organ diseases in holistic medicine was revealed, facilitating the development of novel treatment paradigm for complex diseases in the future. PMID:26101539

  20. Amygdala and socio-sexual behavior in male zebra finches.

    PubMed

    Ikebuchi, Maki; Hasegawa, Toshikazu; Bischof, Hans-Joachim

    2009-01-01

    Neuroanatomical studies including pathway tracing and cytochemical characterizations have suggested that the avian nucleus taeniae of the amygdala (TnA) might be homologous to a part of the mammalian medial amygdala. Recent behavioral observations in TnA-lesioned birds also reported deficits in the control of motivational aspects of behavior, advancing the concept of homology of the structure in the two classes of animals. To further examine the functional role of TnA, we used a highly social, monogamous song bird species, the zebra finch, for our experiments. Male birds received a focal lesion of TnA, and several aspects of socio-sexual behavior of these animals were compared with control bird behavior. We found that zebra finch males with TnA lesions were never chosen as sexual partners by a female in a triadic situation with another male because they showed less sexually motivated behavior. Because such sexually motivated behavior was shown in dyadic situations with a lesioned male and a female, however, and females in this situation also showed pair bonding behavior towards the lesioned males, TnA might be involved in other behaviors, not just sexual behavior towards females. Instead, it might play a role in the control of a variety of social encounters including male-female and male-male interactions. This research clearly indicates that TnA, by its involvement in the control of socio-sexual behavior, is functionally comparable with the mammalian medial amygdala. 2009 S. Karger AG, Basel.

  1. Zebra pattern in decametric radio emission of Jupiter

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Panchenko, M.; Rošker, S.; Rucker, H. O.; Brazhenko, A.; Zarka, P.; Litvinenko, G.; Shaposhnikov, V. E.; Konovalenko, A. A.; Melnik, V.; Franzuzenko, A. V.; Schiemel, J.

    2018-03-01

    We report the systematic analysis of zebra-like fine spectral structures in decametric frequency range of Jovian radio emission. Observations were performed by the large ground-based radio telescope URAN-2 during three observation campaigns between, Sep., 2012, and May, 2015. In total, 51 zebra pattern (ZP) events were detected. These rare fine radio features are observed in frequency range from 12.5 to 29.7 MHz as quasi-harmonically related bands of enhanced brightness. ZPs are strongly polarized radio emission with a duration from 20 s to 290 s and flux densities 105-106 Jy (normalized to 1 AU), that is, 1-2 orders lower than for Io-decametric radio emission (DAM). Occurrence of the events does not depend on the position of Io satellite but is strongly controlled by the Jovian central meridian longitude (CML). ZPs are mainly detected in two active sectors of Jovian CMLs: 100∘ to 160∘ for Northern sources (right-handed polarized) and 300∘ and 60∘ (via 360∘) for the Southern sources (left-handed). The frequency interval between neighboring stripes is from 0.26 to 1.5 MHz and in most cases this interval increases with frequency. We discussed the double plasma resonance with electrons or ions as a possible source of the ZPs. The performed analysis of the observations allows us to conclude that the observed ZPs are a new type of narrow band spectral structures in the Jovian DAM.

  2. Evolutionary Analysis and Expression Profiling of Zebra Finch Immune Genes

    PubMed Central

    Ekblom, Robert; French, Lisa; Slate, Jon; Burke, Terry

    2010-01-01

    Genes of the immune system are generally considered to evolve rapidly due to host–parasite coevolution. They are therefore of great interest in evolutionary biology and molecular ecology. In this study, we manually annotated 144 avian immune genes from the zebra finch (Taeniopygia guttata) genome and conducted evolutionary analyses of these by comparing them with their orthologs in the chicken (Gallus gallus). Genes classified as immune receptors showed elevated dN/dS ratios compared with other classes of immune genes. Immune genes in general also appear to be evolving more rapidly than other genes, as inferred from a higher dN/dS ratio compared with the rest of the genome. Furthermore, ten genes (of 27) for which sequence data were available from at least three bird species showed evidence of positive selection acting on specific codons. From transcriptome data of eight different tissues, we found evidence for expression of 106 of the studied immune genes, with primary expression of most of these in bursa, blood, and spleen. These immune-related genes showed a more tissue-specific expression pattern than other genes in the zebra finch genome. Several of the avian immune genes investigated here provide strong candidates for in-depth studies of molecular adaptation in birds. PMID:20884724

  3. Zebra finches are able to learn affixation-like patterns.

    PubMed

    Chen, Jiani; Jansen, Naomi; ten Cate, Carel

    2016-01-01

    Adding an affix to transform a word is common across the world languages, with the edges of words more likely to carry out such a function. However, detecting affixation patterns is also observed in learning tasks outside the domain of language, suggesting that the underlying mechanism from which affixation patterns have arisen may not be language or even human specific. We addressed whether a songbird, the zebra finch, is able to discriminate between, and generalize, affixation-like patterns. Zebra finches were trained and tested in a Go/Nogo paradigm to discriminate artificial song element sequences resembling prefixed and suffixed 'words.' The 'stems' of the 'words,' consisted of different combinations of a triplet of song elements, to which a fourth element was added as either a 'prefix' or a 'suffix.' After training, the birds were tested with novel stems, consisting of either rearranged familiar element types or novel element types. The birds were able to generalize the affixation patterns to novel stems with both familiar and novel element types. Hence, the discrimination resulting from the training was not based on memorization of individual stimuli, but on a shared property among Go or Nogo stimuli, i.e., affixation patterns. Remarkably, birds trained with suffixation as Go pattern showed clear evidence of using both prefix and suffix, while those trained with the prefix as the Go stimulus used primarily the prefix. This finding illustrates that an asymmetry in attending to different affixations is not restricted to human languages.

  4. Staged Z-pinch Experiments on Cobra and Zebra

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wessel, Frank J.; Anderson, A.; Banasek, J. T.; Byvank, T.; Conti, F.; Darling, T. W.; Dutra, E.; Glebov, V.; Greenly, J.; Hammer, D. A.; Potter, W. M.; Rocco, S. V.; Ross, M. P.; Ruskov, E.; Valenzuela, J.; Beg, F.; Covington, A.; Narkis, J.; Rahman, H. U.

    2017-10-01

    A Staged Z-pinch (SZP), configured as a pre-magnetized, high-Z (Ar, or Kr) annular liner imploding onto a low-Z (H, or D) target, was tested on the Cornell University, Cobra Facility and the University of Nevada, Reno, Zebra Facility; each characterized similarly by a nominal 1-MA current and 100-ns risetime while possessing different diagnostic packages. XUV-fast imaging reveals that the SZP implosion dynamics is similar on both machines and that it is more stable with an axial (Bz) magnetic field, a target, or both, than without. On Zebra, where neutron production is possible, reproducible thermonuclear (DD) yields were recorded at levels in excess of 109/shot. Flux compression in the SZP is also expected to produce magnetic field intensities of the order of kilo-Tesla. Thus, the DD reaction produced tritions should also yield secondary DT neutrons. Indeed, secondaries are measured above the noise threshold at levels approaching 106/shot. Funded by the Advanced Research Projects Agency - Energy, under Grant Number DE-AR0000569.

  5. Colour preferences in nest-building zebra finches.

    PubMed

    Muth, Felicity; Steele, Matthew; Healy, Susan D

    2013-10-01

    Some bird species are selective in the materials they choose for nest building, preferring, for example, materials of one colour to others. However, in many cases the cause of these preferences is not clear. One of those species is the zebra finch, which exhibits strong preferences for particular colours of nest material. In an attempt to determine why these birds strongly prefer one colour of material over another, we compared the preferences of paired male zebra finches for nest material colour with their preferences for food of the same colours. We found that birds did indeed prefer particular colours of nest material (in most cases blue) but that they did not generally prefer food of one colour over the other colours. It appears, then, that a preference for one colour or another of nest material is specific to the nest-building context. This article is part of a Special Issue entitled: insert SI title. Copyright © 2013 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  6. Longitudinal patterns in abundance of the zebra mussel (Dreissena polymorpha) in the upper Mississippi River

    Cope, W.G.; Bartsch, M.R.; Hayden, R.R.

    1997-01-01

    We assessed the abundance of zebra mussels in the upper Mississippi River during 1995, four years after they were first found in the river. Samplers were deployed from May 30 to October 19, 1995, at 19 lock and dam facilities in the upper Mississippi River from Minneapolis, Minnesota, to Muscatine, Iowa. Zebra mussels were found at every lock and dam except the two sites farthest upstream (Minneapolis). Generally, densities of zebra mussels were greatest at sites 161 km and farther downstream of the Minneapolis area. The greatest mean mussel density was 11,432/m(2) at Fulton, Illinois.

  7. Parental origin of sequence variants associated with complex diseases.

    PubMed

    Kong, Augustine; Steinthorsdottir, Valgerdur; Masson, Gisli; Thorleifsson, Gudmar; Sulem, Patrick; Besenbacher, Soren; Jonasdottir, Aslaug; Sigurdsson, Asgeir; Kristinsson, Kari Th; Jonasdottir, Adalbjorg; Frigge, Michael L; Gylfason, Arnaldur; Olason, Pall I; Gudjonsson, Sigurjon A; Sverrisson, Sverrir; Stacey, Simon N; Sigurgeirsson, Bardur; Benediktsdottir, Kristrun R; Sigurdsson, Helgi; Jonsson, Thorvaldur; Benediktsson, Rafn; Olafsson, Jon H; Johannsson, Oskar Th; Hreidarsson, Astradur B; Sigurdsson, Gunnar; Ferguson-Smith, Anne C; Gudbjartsson, Daniel F; Thorsteinsdottir, Unnur; Stefansson, Kari

    2009-12-17

    Effects of susceptibility variants may depend on from which parent they are inherited. Although many associations between sequence variants and human traits have been discovered through genome-wide associations, the impact of parental origin has largely been ignored. Here we show that for 38,167 Icelanders genotyped using single nucleotide polymorphism (SNP) chips, the parental origin of most alleles can be determined. For this we used a combination of genealogy and long-range phasing. We then focused on SNPs that associate with diseases and are within 500 kilobases of known imprinted genes. Seven independent SNP associations were examined. Five-one with breast cancer, one with basal-cell carcinoma and three with type 2 diabetes-have parental-origin-specific associations. These variants are located in two genomic regions, 11p15 and 7q32, each harbouring a cluster of imprinted genes. Furthermore, we observed a novel association between the SNP rs2334499 at 11p15 and type 2 diabetes. Here the allele that confers risk when paternally inherited is protective when maternally transmitted. We identified a differentially methylated CTCF-binding site at 11p15 and demonstrated correlation of rs2334499 with decreased methylation of that site.

  8. Bacterial pathogens of the bovine respiratory disease complex.

    PubMed

    Griffin, Dee; Chengappa, M M; Kuszak, Jennifer; McVey, D Scott

    2010-07-01

    Pneumonia caused by the bacterial pathogens discussed in this article is the most significant cause of morbidity and mortality of the BRDC. Most of these infectious bacteria are not capable of inducing significant disease without the presence of other predisposing environmental factors, physiologic stressors, or concurrent infections. Mannheimia haemolytica is the most common and serious of these bacterial agents and is therefore also the most highly characterized. There are other important bacterial pathogens of BRD, such as Pasteurella multocida, Histophulus somni, and Mycoplasma bovis. Mixed infections with these organisms do occur. These pathogens have unique and common virulence factors but the resulting pneumonic lesions may be similar. Although the amount and quality of research associated with BRD has increased, vaccination and therapeutic practices are not fully successful. A greater understanding of the virulence mechanisms of the infecting bacteria and pathogenesis of pneumonia, as well as the characteristics of the organisms that allow tissue persistence, may lead to improved management, therapeutics, and vaccines. Copyright 2010 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  9. Researchers and stakeholders shape advances in management of tree and vine trunk-disease complexes

    The grapevine trunk-disease complex limits grape production and vineyard longevity worldwide. Every vineyard in California eventually is infected by one or more trunk diseases. The causal fungi, which are taxonomically unrelated Ascomycetes, infect and then degrade the permanent woody structure of t...

  10. Towards a Better Understanding of Complex Disease: Identifying Endotypes of Childhood Asthma

    EPA Science Inventory

    Complex disease, where the diagnostic criteria cannot distinguish among differing etiologies, is often difficult to diagnose, treat and study due to the inability to classify individuals into suitable subtypes of the disease. Here, we aim to use and compare a combination of met...

  11. The patient with a complex chronic respiratory disease: a specialist of his own life?

    PubMed

    Houben-Wilke, Sarah; Augustin, Ingrid Ml; Wouters, Birgit Bref; Stevens, Rosita Ah; Janssen, Daisy Ja; Spruit, Martijn A; Vanfleteren, Lowie Egw; Franssen, Frits Me; Wouters, Emiel Fm

    2017-12-01

    The independent and central role of the patient with a complex chronic respiratory disease in targeted, personalized disease management strategies is becoming increasingly important. Patients are the ones living with the disease and are finally responsible for their lives underlining their role as essential members of the interdisciplinary treatment team. Areas covered: The present paper narratively reviews existing research and discusses the special, as well as specialized, role of the patient with a complex chronic respiratory disease in the healthcare system and highlights fundamental elements of the (future) relationship between patient and healthcare professionals. Expert commentary: Since the chronic respiratory disease at hand is part of the patient's entire life, we need holistic, personalized approaches optimizing patients' quality of life by not only treating the disease but considering the patients' whole environment and where healthcare professionals and patients are co-creating value care.

  12. Drug-disease association and drug-repositioning predictions in complex diseases using causal inference-probabilistic matrix factorization.

    PubMed

    Yang, Jihong; Li, Zheng; Fan, Xiaohui; Cheng, Yiyu

    2014-09-22

    The high incidence of complex diseases has become a worldwide threat to human health. Multiple targets and pathways are perturbed during the pathological process of complex diseases. Systematic investigation of complex relationship between drugs and diseases is necessary for new association discovery and drug repurposing. For this purpose, three causal networks were constructed herein for cardiovascular diseases, diabetes mellitus, and neoplasms, respectively. A causal inference-probabilistic matrix factorization (CI-PMF) approach was proposed to predict and classify drug-disease associations, and further used for drug-repositioning predictions. First, multilevel systematic relations between drugs and diseases were integrated from heterogeneous databases to construct causal networks connecting drug-target-pathway-gene-disease. Then, the association scores between drugs and diseases were assessed by evaluating a drug's effects on multiple targets and pathways. Furthermore, PMF models were learned based on known interactions, and associations were then classified into three types by trained models. Finally, therapeutic associations were predicted based upon the ranking of association scores and predicted association types. In terms of drug-disease association prediction, modified causal inference included in CI-PMF outperformed existing causal inference with a higher AUC (area under receiver operating characteristic curve) score and greater precision. Moreover, CI-PMF performed better than single modified causal inference in predicting therapeutic drug-disease associations. In the top 30% of predicted associations, 58.6% (136/232), 50.8% (31/61), and 39.8% (140/352) hit known therapeutic associations, while precisions obtained by the latter were only 10.2% (231/2264), 8.8% (36/411), and 9.7% (189/1948). Clinical verifications were further conducted for the top 100 newly predicted therapeutic associations. As a result, 21, 12, and 32 associations have been studied and

  13. [Role of environment in complex diseases: air pollution and food contaminants].

    PubMed

    Scheen, A J; Giet, D

    2012-01-01

    Our polluted environment exposes human beings, along their life, to various toxic compounds that could trigger and aggravate different complex diseases. Such a phenomenon is well recognized for cardiovascular diseases, respiratory diseases and cancers, but other chronic inflammatory disorders may also been implicated. The most common factors, but also the most toxic, and thereby the most extensively investigated, are air pollutants (both indoor and outdoor pollution) and various contaminants present in drinking water and food (organic compounds, chemical products, heavy metals, ...). The complex interrelationships between food and pollutants, on the one hand, and between gene and environmental pollutants, including the influence of epigenetics, on the other hand, deserve further careful studies.

  14. Missing heritability and strategies for finding the underlying causes of complex disease

    PubMed Central

    Eichler, Evan E.; Flint, Jonathan; Gibson, Greg; Kong, Augustine; Leal, Suzanne M.; Moore, Jason H.; Nadeau, Joseph H.

    2010-01-01

    Although recent genome-wide studies have provided valuable insights into the genetic basis of human disease, they have explained relatively little of the heritability of most complex traits, and the variants identified through these studies have small effect sizes. This has led to the important and hotly debated issue of where the ‘missing heritability’ of complex diseases might be found. Here, seven leading geneticists offer their opinion about where this heritability is likely to lie, what this could tell us about the underlying genetic architecture of common diseases and how this could inform research strategies for uncovering genetic risk factors. PMID:20479774

  15. AFRICAN GENETIC DIVERSITY: Implications for Human Demographic History, Modern Human Origins, and Complex Disease Mapping

    PubMed Central

    Campbell, Michael C.; Tishkoff, Sarah A.

    2010-01-01

    Comparative studies of ethnically diverse human populations, particularly in Africa, are important for reconstructing human evolutionary history and for understanding the genetic basis of phenotypic adaptation and complex disease. African populations are characterized by greater levels of genetic diversity, extensive population substructure, and less linkage disequilibrium (LD) among loci compared to non-African populations. Africans also possess a number of genetic adaptations that have evolved in response to diverse climates and diets, as well as exposure to infectious disease. This review summarizes patterns and the evolutionary origins of genetic diversity present in African populations, as well as their implications for the mapping of complex traits, including disease susceptibility. PMID:18593304

  16. Presence of voltage-gated potassium channel complex antibody in a case of genetic prion disease

    PubMed Central

    Jammoul, Adham; Lederman, Richard J; Tavee, Jinny; Li, Yuebing

    2014-01-01

    Voltage-gated potassium channel (VGKC) complex antibody-mediated encephalitis is a recently recognised entity which has been reported to mimic the clinical presentation of Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease (CJD). Testing for the presence of this neuronal surface autoantibody in patients presenting with subacute encephalopathy is therefore crucial as it may both revoke the bleak diagnosis of prion disease and allow institution of potentially life-saving immunotherapy. Tempering this optimistic view is the rare instance when a positive VGKC complex antibody titre occurs in a definite case of prion disease. We present a pathologically and genetically confirmed case of CJD with elevated serum VGKC complex antibody titres. This case highlights the importance of interpreting the result of a positive VGKC complex antibody with caution and in the context of the overall clinical manifestation. PMID:24903967

  17. Presence of voltage-gated potassium channel complex antibody in a case of genetic prion disease.

    PubMed

    Jammoul, Adham; Lederman, Richard J; Tavee, Jinny; Li, Yuebing

    2014-06-05

    Voltage-gated potassium channel (VGKC) complex antibody-mediated encephalitis is a recently recognised entity which has been reported to mimic the clinical presentation of Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease (CJD). Testing for the presence of this neuronal surface autoantibody in patients presenting with subacute encephalopathy is therefore crucial as it may both revoke the bleak diagnosis of prion disease and allow institution of potentially life-saving immunotherapy. Tempering this optimistic view is the rare instance when a positive VGKC complex antibody titre occurs in a definite case of prion disease. We present a pathologically and genetically confirmed case of CJD with elevated serum VGKC complex antibody titres. This case highlights the importance of interpreting the result of a positive VGKC complex antibody with caution and in the context of the overall clinical manifestation. 2014 BMJ Publishing Group Ltd.

  18. Seasonal Patterns of Hormones, Macroparasites, and Microparasites in Wild African Ungulates: The Interplay among Stress, Reproduction, and Disease

    PubMed Central

    Cizauskas, Carrie A.; Turner, Wendy C.; Pitts, Neville; Getz, Wayne M.

    2015-01-01

    Sex hormones, reproductive status, and pathogen load all affect stress. Together with stress, these factors can modulate the immune system and affect disease incidence. Thus, it is important to concurrently measure these factors, along with their seasonal fluctuations, to better understand their complex interactions. Using steroid hormone metabolites from fecal samples, we examined seasonal correlations among zebra and springbok stress, reproduction, gastrointestinal (GI) parasite infections, and anthrax infection signatures in zebra and springbok in Etosha National Park (ENP), Namibia, and found strong seasonal effects. Infection intensities of all three GI macroparasites examined (strongyle helminths, Strongyloides helminths, and Eimeria coccidia) were highest in the wet season, concurrent with the timing of anthrax outbreaks. Parasites also declined with increased acquired immune responses. We found hormonal evidence that both mares and ewes are overwhelmingly seasonal breeders in ENP, and that reproductive hormones are correlated with immunosuppression and higher susceptibility to GI parasite infections. Stress hormones largely peak in the dry season, particularly in zebra, when parasite infection intensities are lowest, and are most strongly correlated with host mid-gestation rather than with parasite infection intensity. Given the evidence that GI parasites can cause host pathology, immunomodulation, and immunosuppression, their persistence in ENP hosts without inducing chronic stress responses supports the hypothesis that hosts are tolerant of their parasites. Such tolerance would help to explain the ubiquity of these organisms in ENP herbivores, even in the face of their potential immunomodulatory trade-offs with anti-anthrax immunity. PMID:25875647

  19. Seasonal patterns of hormones, macroparasites, and microparasites in wild African ungulates: the interplay among stress, reproduction, and disease.

    PubMed

    Cizauskas, Carrie A; Turner, Wendy C; Pitts, Neville; Getz, Wayne M

    2015-01-01

    Sex hormones, reproductive status, and pathogen load all affect stress. Together with stress, these factors can modulate the immune system and affect disease incidence. Thus, it is important to concurrently measure these factors, along with their seasonal fluctuations, to better understand their complex interactions. Using steroid hormone metabolites from fecal samples, we examined seasonal correlations among zebra and springbok stress, reproduction, gastrointestinal (GI) parasite infections, and anthrax infection signatures in zebra and springbok in Etosha National Park (ENP), Namibia, and found strong seasonal effects. Infection intensities of all three GI macroparasites examined (strongyle helminths, Strongyloides helminths, and Eimeria coccidia) were highest in the wet season, concurrent with the timing of anthrax outbreaks. Parasites also declined with increased acquired immune responses. We found hormonal evidence that both mares and ewes are overwhelmingly seasonal breeders in ENP, and that reproductive hormones are correlated with immunosuppression and higher susceptibility to GI parasite infections. Stress hormones largely peak in the dry season, particularly in zebra, when parasite infection intensities are lowest, and are most strongly correlated with host mid-gestation rather than with parasite infection intensity. Given the evidence that GI parasites can cause host pathology, immunomodulation, and immunosuppression, their persistence in ENP hosts without inducing chronic stress responses supports the hypothesis that hosts are tolerant of their parasites. Such tolerance would help to explain the ubiquity of these organisms in ENP herbivores, even in the face of their potential immunomodulatory trade-offs with anti-anthrax immunity.

  20. Synergisms between microbial pathogens in plant disease complexes: a growing trend

    PubMed Central

    Lamichhane, Jay Ram; Venturi, Vittorio

    2015-01-01

    Plant diseases are often thought to be caused by one species or even by a specific strain. Microbes in nature, however, mostly occur as part of complex communities and this has been noted since the time of van Leeuwenhoek. Interestingly, most laboratory studies focus on single microbial strains grown in pure culture; we were therefore unaware of possible interspecies and/or inter-kingdom interactions of pathogenic microbes in the wild. In human and animal infections, it is now being recognized that many diseases are the result of multispecies synergistic interactions. This increases the complexity of the disease and has to be taken into consideration in the development of more effective control measures. On the other hand, there are only a few reports of synergistic pathogen–pathogen interactions in plant diseases and the mechanisms of interactions are currently unknown. Here we review some of these reports of synergism between different plant pathogens and their possible implications in crop health. Finally, we briefly highlight the recent technological advances in diagnostics as these are beginning to provide important insights into the microbial communities associated with complex plant diseases. These examples of synergistic interactions of plant pathogens that lead to disease complexes might prove to be more common than expected and understanding the underlying mechanisms might have important implications in plant disease epidemiology and management. PMID:26074945

  1. Periodontal and inflammatory bowel diseases: Is there evidence of complex pathogenic interactions?

    PubMed

    Lira-Junior, Ronaldo; Figueredo, Carlos Marcelo

    2016-09-21

    Periodontal disease and inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) are both chronic inflammatory diseases. Their pathogenesis is mediated by a complex interplay between a dysbiotic microbiota and the host immune-inflammatory response, and both are influenced by genetic and environmental factors. This review aimed to provide an overview of the evidence dealing with a possible pathogenic interaction between periodontal disease and IBD. There seems to be an increased prevalence of periodontal disease in patients with IBD when compared to healthy controls, probably due to changes in the oral microbiota and a higher inflammatory response. Moreover, the induction of periodontitis seems to result in gut dysbiosis and altered gut epithelial cell barrier function, which might contribute to the pathogenesis of IBD. Considering the complexity of both periodontal disease and IBD, it is very challenging to understand the possible pathways involved in their coexistence. In conclusion, this review points to a complex pathogenic interaction between periodontal disease and IBD, in which one disease might alter the composition of the microbiota and increase the inflammatory response related to the other. However, we still need more data derived from human studies to confirm results from murine models. Thus, mechanistic studies are definitely warranted to clarify this possible bidirectional association.

  2. Periodontal and inflammatory bowel diseases: Is there evidence of complex pathogenic interactions?

    PubMed Central

    Lira-Junior, Ronaldo; Figueredo, Carlos Marcelo

    2016-01-01

    Periodontal disease and inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) are both chronic inflammatory diseases. Their pathogenesis is mediated by a complex interplay between a dysbiotic microbiota and the host immune-inflammatory response, and both are influenced by genetic and environmental factors. This review aimed to provide an overview of the evidence dealing with a possible pathogenic interaction between periodontal disease and IBD. There seems to be an increased prevalence of periodontal disease in patients with IBD when compared to healthy controls, probably due to changes in the oral microbiota and a higher inflammatory response. Moreover, the induction of periodontitis seems to result in gut dysbiosis and altered gut epithelial cell barrier function, which might contribute to the pathogenesis of IBD. Considering the complexity of both periodontal disease and IBD, it is very challenging to understand the possible pathways involved in their coexistence. In conclusion, this review points to a complex pathogenic interaction between periodontal disease and IBD, in which one disease might alter the composition of the microbiota and increase the inflammatory response related to the other. However, we still need more data derived from human studies to confirm results from murine models. Thus, mechanistic studies are definitely warranted to clarify this possible bidirectional association. PMID:27672291

  3. Predicting the spread of aquatic invaders: insight from 200 years of invasion by zebra mussels.

    PubMed

    Karatayev, Alexander Y; Burlakova, Lyubov E; Mastitsky, Sergey E; Padilla, Dianna K

    2015-03-01

    Understanding factors controlling the introduction and spread of species is crucial to improving the management of both natural populations and introduced species. The zebra mussel, Dreissena polymorpha, is considered the most aggressive freshwater invader in the Northern Hemisphere, and is a convenient model system for invasion biology, offering one of the best aquatic examples for examining the invasion process. We used data on 553 of the 1040 glacial lakes in the Republic of Belarus that were examined for the presence of zebra mussels. We used these data to build, test, and construct modified models to predict the spread of this invader, including selection of important parameters that could limit the spread of this invader. In spite of 200 years of continuous invasion, by 1996, zebra mussels were found in only 16.8% of all lakes studied. Of those lakes without zebra mussels in 1996, 66% were predicted to be susceptible to invasion by zebra mussels in the future, and 33% were predicted to be immune to successful invasion due to their water chemistry. Eighty lakes free of zebra mussels in 1996 were reexamined from 1997 to 2008. Of these, zebra mussels successfully invaded an additional 31 lakes, all of which were classified initially as suitable for zebra mussels; none of the lakes previously classified as unsuitable were invaded. We used the Random Forests classification algorithm with 16 environmental variables to determine the most important factors that differed between invaded lakes and those lakes suitable for invasion that have not yet been invaded. Distance to the nearest infested lakes was found to be the most important variable, followed by the lake area, color, average depth, and concentration of chloride, magnesium, and bicarbonate. This study provides a useful approach for predicting the spread of an invader across a landscape with variable habitat suitability that can be applied to a variety of species and systems.

  4. Sonographic Bands of Hypoechogenicity in the Spleen in Children: Zebra Spleen.

    PubMed

    Kuint, Ruth Cytter; Daneman, Alan; Navarro, Oscar M; Oates, Adam

    2016-09-01

    Zebra spleen is the normal pattern of splenic enhancement during the arterial phase of CT and MRI and is attributed to different flow rates. The purpose of this study was to describe the appearance and occurrence of bands of hypoechogenicity in the spleen on unenhanced sonograms of children with no splenic abnormalities. We reviewed 100 abdominal ultrasound studies to evaluate the ultrasound characteristics of the spleen. Demographic data were collected for all patients. Homogeneous echogenicity of the spleen was found in 92 children. Heterogeneous echogenicity was present in eight. Three of the eight had discrete macronodules due to known splenic disease. The other five had bands of hypoechogenicity. These five had no known splenic disease, but one had mild splenomegaly of unknown cause. The pattern of hypoechoic bands occurred in 5% of our series. This pattern cannot be explained simply by different flow rates and probably reflects different structural components of the parenchyma. At ultrasound this pattern should be considered a normal finding that may simulate a splenic mass.

  5. Poverty-related diseases (PRDs): unravelling complexities in disease responses in Cameroon.

    PubMed

    Makoge, Valerie; Maat, Harro; Vaandrager, Lenneke; Koelen, Maria

    2017-01-01

    In Cameroon, poverty-related diseases (PRDs) are a major public health concern. Research and policies addressing PRDs are based on a particular understanding of the interaction between poverty and disease, usually an association between poverty indicators and health indicators for a specific country or region. Such indicators are useful but fail to explain the nature of the linkages between poverty and disease or poverty and health. This paper presents results of a study among university students, unravelling how they perceive diseases, the linkages with poverty, their responses to diseases and the motivations behind reported responses. Based on the health belief model, this cross-sectional study was carried out among 272 students at the universities of Buea and Yaoundé in Cameroon. Data were collected using questionnaires containing items matching the research objectives. The questionnaires were self-completed. Malaria was considered as the most common disease perceived and also a major PRD. Contrary to official rankings of HIV/AIDS and TB, cholera and diarrhoea were considered as other major PRDs. Also, typhoid fever was perceived to be more common and a PRD than HIV/AIDS and TB combined. The most prominently attributed cause for disease was (lack of) hygiene. In response, students deployed formal and/or informal healthcare strategies, depending on factors like available money, perceived severity of the disease and disease type. Discrepancies were observed in respondents' response to diseases generally and to malaria in particular. Even though, overall, respondents pre-dominantly reported a formal healthcare response toward diseases in general, for malaria, informal responses dominated. There was an overall strong awareness and (pro)activity among students for dealing with diseases. Although the high use of informal facilities and medication for malaria may well be a reason why eradication is problematic, this seems to be a deliberate strategy linked to an

  6. Kin recognition and adjustment of reproductive effort in zebra finches.

    PubMed

    Arct, Aneta; Rutkowska, Joanna; Martyka, Rafal; Drobniak, Szymon M; Cichon, Mariusz

    2010-12-23

    The differential allocation theory predicts that females should invest more in offspring produced with attractive partners, and a number of studies support this prediction in birds. Females have been shown to increase reproductive investment when mated to males showing elaborated sexual traits. However, mate attractiveness might also depend on the interaction between male and female genotypes. Accordingly, females should invest more in offspring sired by individuals that are genetically dissimilar or carry superior alleles. Here, we show in zebra finches (Taeniopygia guttata) that pairs of unfamiliar genetic brothers and sisters are less likely to reproduce in comparison with randomly mated pairs. Among the brother-sister pairs, those that attempted to breed laid smaller clutches and of lower total clutch mass. Our results provide the first experimental evidence that females adjust their reproductive effort in response to the genetic similarity of their partners. Importantly, these results imply a female ability to assess relatedness of a social mate without prior association.

  7. Kin recognition and adjustment of reproductive effort in zebra finches

    PubMed Central

    Arct, Aneta; Rutkowska, Joanna; Martyka, Rafał; Drobniak, Szymon M.; Cichoń, Mariusz

    2010-01-01

    The differential allocation theory predicts that females should invest more in offspring produced with attractive partners, and a number of studies support this prediction in birds. Females have been shown to increase reproductive investment when mated to males showing elaborated sexual traits. However, mate attractiveness might also depend on the interaction between male and female genotypes. Accordingly, females should invest more in offspring sired by individuals that are genetically dissimilar or carry superior alleles. Here, we show in zebra finches (Taeniopygia guttata) that pairs of unfamiliar genetic brothers and sisters are less likely to reproduce in comparison with randomly mated pairs. Among the brother–sister pairs, those that attempted to breed laid smaller clutches and of lower total clutch mass. Our results provide the first experimental evidence that females adjust their reproductive effort in response to the genetic similarity of their partners. Importantly, these results imply a female ability to assess relatedness of a social mate without prior association. PMID:20573618

  8. Exploring sex differences in the adult zebra finch brain: In vivo diffusion tensor imaging and ex vivo super-resolution track density imaging.

    PubMed

    Hamaide, Julie; De Groof, Geert; Van Steenkiste, Gwendolyn; Jeurissen, Ben; Van Audekerke, Johan; Naeyaert, Maarten; Van Ruijssevelt, Lisbeth; Cornil, Charlotte; Sijbers, Jan; Verhoye, Marleen; Van der Linden, Annemie

    2017-02-01

    Zebra finches are an excellent model to study the process of vocal learning, a complex socially-learned tool of communication that forms the basis of spoken human language. So far, structural investigation of the zebra finch brain has been performed ex vivo using invasive methods such as histology. These methods are highly specific, however, they strongly interfere with performing whole-brain analyses and exclude longitudinal studies aimed at establishing causal correlations between neuroplastic events and specific behavioral performances. Therefore, the aim of the current study was to implement an in vivo Diffusion Tensor Imaging (DTI) protocol sensitive enough to detect structural sex differences in the adult zebra finch brain. Voxel-wise comparison of male and female DTI parameter maps shows clear differences in several components of the song control system (i.e. Area X surroundings, the high vocal center (HVC) and the lateral magnocellular nucleus of the anterior nidopallium (LMAN)), which corroborate previous findings and are in line with the clear behavioral difference as only males sing. Furthermore, to obtain additional insights into the 3-dimensional organization of the zebra finch brain and clarify findings obtained by the in vivo study, ex vivo DTI data of the male and female brain were acquired as well, using a recently established super-resolution reconstruction (SRR) imaging strategy. Interestingly, the SRR-DTI approach led to a marked reduction in acquisition time without interfering with the (spatial and angular) resolution and SNR which enabled to acquire a data set characterized by a 78μm isotropic resolution including 90 diffusion gradient directions within 44h of scanning time. Based on the reconstructed SRR-DTI maps, whole brain probabilistic Track Density Imaging (TDI) was performed for the purpose of super resolved track density imaging, further pushing the resolution up to 40μm isotropic. The DTI and TDI maps realized atlas

  9. Prioritisation of associations between protein domains and complex diseases using domain-domain interaction networks.

    PubMed

    Wang, W; Zhang, W; Jiang, R; Luan, Y

    2010-05-01

    It is of vital importance to find genetic variants that underlie human complex diseases and locate genes that are responsible for these diseases. Since proteins are typically composed of several structural domains, it is reasonable to assume that harmful genetic variants may alter structures of protein domains, affect functions of proteins and eventually cause disorders. With this understanding, the authors explore the possibility of recovering associations between protein domains and complex diseases. The authors define associations between protein domains and disease families on the basis of associations between non-synonymous single nucleotide polymorphisms (nsSNPs) and complex diseases, similarities between diseases, and relations between proteins and domains. Based on a domain-domain interaction network, the authors propose a 'guilt-by-proximity' principle to rank candidate domains according to their average distance to a set of seed domains in the domain-domain interaction network. The authors validate the method through large-scale cross-validation experiments on simulated linkage intervals, random controls and the whole genome. Results show that areas under receiver operating characteristic curves (AUC scores) can be as high as 77.90%, and the mean rank ratios can be as low as 21.82%. The authors further offer a freely accessible web interface for a genome-wide landscape of associations between domains and disease families.

  10. Allele-Specific Methylation Occurs at Genetic Variants Associated with Complex Disease

    PubMed Central

    Hutchinson, John N.; Raj, Towfique; Fagerness, Jes; Stahl, Eli; Viloria, Fernando T.; Gimelbrant, Alexander; Seddon, Johanna; Daly, Mark; Chess, Andrew; Plenge, Robert

    2014-01-01

    We hypothesize that the phenomenon of allele-specific methylation (ASM) may underlie the phenotypic effects of multiple variants identified by Genome-Wide Association studies (GWAS). We evaluate ASM in a human population and document its genome-wide patterns in an initial screen at up to 380,678 sites within the genome, or up to 5% of the total genomic CpGs. We show that while substantial inter-individual variation exists, 5% of assessed sites show evidence of ASM in at least six samples; the majority of these events (81%) are under genetic influence. Many of these cis-regulated ASM variants are also eQTLs in peripheral blood mononuclear cells and monocytes and/or in high linkage-disequilibrium with variants linked to complex disease. Finally, focusing on autoimmune phenotypes, we extend this initial screen to confirm the association of cis-regulated ASM with multiple complex disease-associated variants in an independent population using next-generation bisulfite sequencing. These four variants are implicated in complex phenotypes such as ulcerative colitis and AIDS progression disease (rs10491434), Celiac disease (rs2762051), Crohn's disease, IgA nephropathy and early-onset inflammatory bowel disease (rs713875) and height (rs6569648). Our results suggest cis-regulated ASM may provide a mechanistic link between the non-coding genetic changes and phenotypic variation observed in these diseases and further suggests a route to integrating DNA methylation status with GWAS results. PMID:24911414

  11. Developing an instrument to measure heart failure disease management program intensity and complexity.

    PubMed

    Riegel, Barbara; Lee, Christopher S; Sochalski, Julie

    2010-05-01

    Comparing disease management programs and their effects is difficult because of wide variability in program intensity and complexity. The purpose of this effort was to develop an instrument that can be used to describe the intensity and complexity of heart failure (HF) disease management programs. Specific composition criteria were taken from the American Heart Association (AHA) taxonomy of disease management and hierarchically scored to allow users to describe the intensity and complexity of the domains and subdomains of HF disease management programs. The HF Disease Management Scoring Instrument (HF-DMSI) incorporates 6 of the 8 domains from the taxonomy: recipient, intervention content, delivery personnel, method of communication, intensity/complexity, and environment. The 3 intervention content subdomains (education/counseling, medication management, and peer support) are described separately. In this first test of the HF-DMSI, overall intensity (measured as duration) and complexity were rated using an ordinal scoring system. Possible scores reflect a clinical rationale and differ by category, with zero given only if the element could potentially be missing (eg, surveillance by remote monitoring). Content validity was evident as the instrument matches the existing AHA taxonomy. After revision and refinement, 2 authors obtained an inter-rater reliability intraclass correlation coefficient score of 0.918 (confidence interval, 0.880 to 0.944, P<0.001) in their rating of 12 studies. The areas with most variability among programs were delivery personnel and method of communication. The HF-DMSI is useful for describing the intensity and complexity of HF disease management programs.

  12. Transcriptome complexity in cardiac development and diseases--an expanding universe between genome and phenome.

    PubMed

    Gao, Chen; Wang, Yibin

    2014-01-01

    With the advancement of transcriptome profiling by micro-arrays and high-throughput RNA-sequencing, transcriptome complexity and its dynamics are revealed at different levels in cardiovascular development and diseases. In this review, we will highlight the recent progress in our knowledge of cardiovascular transcriptome complexity contributed by RNA splicing, RNA editing and noncoding RNAs. The emerging importance of many of these previously under-explored aspects of gene regulation in cardiovascular development and pathology will be discussed.

  13. Relevance of Chronic Lyme Disease to Family Medicine as a Complex Multidimensional Chronic Disease Construct: A Systematic Review

    PubMed Central

    Goderis, Geert

    2014-01-01

    Lyme disease has become a global public health problem and a prototype of an emerging infection. Both treatment-refractory infection and symptoms that are related to Borrelia burgdorferi infection remain subject to controversy. Because of the absence of solid evidence on prevalence, causes, diagnostic criteria, tools and treatment options, the role of autoimmunity to residual or persisting antigens, and the role of a toxin or other bacterial-associated products that are responsible for the symptoms and signs, chronic Lyme disease (CLD) remains a relatively poorly understood chronic disease construct. The role and performance of family medicine in the detection, integrative treatment, and follow-up of CLD are not well studied either. The purpose of this paper is to describe insights into the complexity of CLD as a multidimensional chronic disease construct and its relevance to family medicine by means of a systematic literature review. PMID:25506429

  14. Intercontinental spread of a genetically distinctive complex of clones of Neisseria meningitidis causing epidemic disease.

    PubMed

    Caugant, D A; Frøholm, L O; Bøvre, K; Holten, E; Frasch, C E; Mocca, L F; Zollinger, W D; Selander, R K

    1986-07-01

    Strains of Neisseria meningitidis responsible for an epidemic of meningococcal disease occurring in Norway since the mid-1970s and for recent increases in the incidence of disease in several other parts of Europe have been identified by multilocus enzyme electrophoresis as members of a distinctive group of 22 closely related clones (the ET-5 complex). Clones of this complex have also colonized South Africa, Chile, Cuba, and Florida, where they have been identified as the causative agents of recent outbreaks of meningococcal disease. There is strong circumstantial evidence that outbreaks of disease occurring in Miami in 1981 and 1982 were caused in large part by bacteria that reached Florida via human immigrants from Cuba.

  15. Resolution of Crohn's disease and complex regional pain syndrome following treatment of paratuberculosis

    PubMed Central

    Kuenstner, J Todd; Chamberlin, William; Naser, Saleh A; Collins, Michael T; Dow, Coad Thomas; Aitken, John M; Weg, Stuart; Telega, Grzegorz; John, Kuruvilla; Haas, David; Eckstein, Torsten M; Kali, Maher; Welch, Christine; Petrie, Thomas

    2015-01-01

    A cohort of family members with various chronic diseases including Crohn’s disease, asthma, complex regional pain syndrome, hypothyroidism, type 1 diabetes mellitus, and lymphangiomatosis and/or evidence of infection by Mycobacterium avium subsp. paratuberculosis (MAP) are described in this series of case reports. MAP was cultured from the blood of three members affected by the first five diseases and there was accompanying elevated anti-MAP IgG in two members. The patient affected by the sixth disease has a markedly elevated anti-MAP titer. The two patients affected by the first four diseases have been treated with a combination of anti-MAP antibiotics and ultraviolet blood irradiation therapy with resolution of the disease symptomatology and inability to culture MAP in post treatment blood samples. These case reports of patients with MAP infections provide supportive evidence of a pathogenic role of MAP in humans. PMID:25852293

  16. Increased Transcript Complexity in Genes Associated with Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease

    PubMed Central

    Lackey, Lela; McArthur, Evonne; Laederach, Alain

    2015-01-01

    Genome-wide association studies aim to correlate genotype with phenotype. Many common diseases including Type II diabetes, Alzheimer’s, Parkinson’s and Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD) are complex genetic traits with hundreds of different loci that are associated with varied disease risk. Identifying common features in the genes associated with each disease remains a challenge. Furthermore, the role of post-transcriptional regulation, and in particular alternative splicing, is still poorly understood in most multigenic diseases. We therefore compiled comprehensive lists of genes associated with Type II diabetes, Alzheimer’s, Parkinson’s and COPD in an attempt to identify common features of their corresponding mRNA transcripts within each gene set. The SERPINA1 gene is a well-recognized genetic risk factor of COPD and it produces 11 transcript variants, which is exceptional for a human gene. This led us to hypothesize that other genes associated with COPD, and complex disorders in general, are highly transcriptionally diverse. We found that COPD-associated genes have a statistically significant enrichment in transcript complexity stemming from a disproportionately high level of alternative splicing, however, Type II Diabetes, Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s disease genes were not significantly enriched. We also identified a subset of transcriptionally complex COPD-associated genes (~40%) that are differentially expressed between mild, moderate and severe COPD. Although the genes associated with other lung diseases are not extensively documented, we found preliminary data that idiopathic pulmonary disease genes, but not cystic fibrosis modulators, are also more transcriptionally complex. Interestingly, complex COPD transcripts are more often the product of alternative acceptor site usage. To verify the biological importance of these alternative transcripts, we used RNA-sequencing analyses to determine that COPD-associated genes are frequently

  17. Branchial cleft anomaly, congenital heart disease, and biliary atresia: Goldenhar complex or Lambert syndrome?

    PubMed

    Cohen, J; Schanen, N C

    2000-01-01

    The features of Goldenhar complex have been well-described and classically include branchial arch abnormalities, epibulbar dermoid and vertebral abnormalities. We have identified an infant with these features in association with complex congenital heart disease and intrahepatic biliary atresia. Although Lambert described an autosomal recessive disorder with an association of biliary atresia and branchial arch abnormalities, none of those cases had epibulbar dermoid. Diagnostic considerations in this case include inclusion of biliary atresia as a new feature in the expanding spectrum of the Goldenhar complex, versus Lambert syndrome with epibulbar dermoid.

  18. Large-scale synchronized activity during vocal deviance detection in the zebra finch auditory forebrain.

    PubMed

    Beckers, Gabriël J L; Gahr, Manfred

    2012-08-01

    Auditory systems bias responses to sounds that are unexpected on the basis of recent stimulus history, a phenomenon that has been widely studied using sequences of unmodulated tones (mismatch negativity; stimulus-specific adaptation). Such a paradigm, however, does not directly reflect problems that neural systems normally solve for adaptive behavior. We recorded multiunit responses in the caudomedial auditory forebrain of anesthetized zebra finches (Taeniopygia guttata) at 32 sites simultaneously, to contact calls that recur probabilistically at a rate that is used in communication. Neurons in secondary, but not primary, auditory areas respond preferentially to calls when they are unexpected (deviant) compared with the same calls when they are expected (standard). This response bias is predominantly due to sites more often not responding to standard events than to deviant events. When two call stimuli alternate between standard and deviant roles, most sites exhibit a response bias to deviant events of both stimuli. This suggests that biases are not based on a use-dependent decrease in response strength but involve a more complex mechanism that is sensitive to auditory deviance per se. Furthermore, between many secondary sites, responses are tightly synchronized, a phenomenon that is driven by internal neuronal interactions rather than by the timing of stimulus acoustic features. We hypothesize that this deviance-sensitive, internally synchronized network of neurons is involved in the involuntary capturing of attention by unexpected and behaviorally potentially relevant events in natural auditory scenes.

  19. Heterologous Synapsis and Crossover Suppression in Heterozygotes for a Pericentric Inversion in the Zebra Finch.

    PubMed

    del Priore, Lucía; Pigozzi, María I

    2015-01-01

    In the zebra finch, 2 alternative morphs regarding centromere position were described for chromosome 6. This polymorphism was interpreted to be the result of a pericentric inversion, but other causes of the centromere repositioning were not ruled out. We used immunofluorescence localization to examine the distribution of MLH1 foci on synaptonemal complexes to test the prediction that pericentric inversions cause synaptic irregularities and/or crossover suppression in heterozygotes. We found complete suppression of crossing over in the region involved in the rearrangement in male and female heterozygotes. In contrast, the same region showed high levels of crossing over in homozygotes for the acrocentric form of this chromosome. No inversion loops or synaptic irregularities were detected along bivalent 6 in heterozygotes suggesting that heterologous pairing is achieved during zygotene or early pachytene. Altogether these findings strongly indicate that the polymorphic chromosome 6 originated by a pericentric inversion. Since inversions are common rearrangements in karyotypic evolution in birds, it seems likely that early heterologous pairing could help to fix these rearrangements, preventing crossing overs in heterozygotes and their deleterious effects on fertility. © 2015 S. Karger AG, Basel.

  20. A Chemokine Receptor CXCR2 Macromolecular Complex Regulates Neutrophil Functions in Inflammatory Diseases*

    PubMed Central

    Wu, Yanning; Wang, Shuo; Farooq, Shukkur M.; Castelvetere, Marcello P.; Hou, Yuning; Gao, Ji-Liang; Navarro, Javier V.; Oupicky, David; Sun, Fei; Li, Chunying

    2012-01-01

    Inflammation plays an important role in a wide range of human diseases such as ischemia-reperfusion injury, arteriosclerosis, cystic fibrosis, inflammatory bowel disease, etc. Neutrophilic accumulation in the inflamed tissues is an essential component of normal host defense against infection, but uncontrolled neutrophilic infiltration can cause progressive damage to the tissue epithelium. The CXC chemokine receptor CXCR2 and its specific ligands have been reported to play critical roles in the pathophysiology of various inflammatory diseases. However, it is unclear how CXCR2 is coupled specifically to its downstream signaling molecules and modulates cellular functions of neutrophils. Here we show that the PDZ scaffold protein NHERF1 couples CXCR2 to its downstream effector phospholipase C (PLC)-β2, forming a macromolecular complex, through a PDZ-based interaction. We assembled a macromolecular complex of CXCR2·NHERF1·PLC-β2 in vitro, and we also detected such a complex in neutrophils by co-immunoprecipitation. We further observed that the CXCR2-containing macromolecular complex is critical for the CXCR2-mediated intracellular calcium mobilization and the resultant migration and infiltration of neutrophils, as disrupting the complex with a cell permeant CXCR2-specific peptide (containing the PDZ motif) inhibited intracellular calcium mobilization, chemotaxis, and transepithelial migration of neutrophils. Taken together, our data demonstrate a critical role of the PDZ-dependent CXCR2 macromolecular signaling complex in regulating neutrophil functions and suggest that targeting the CXCR2 multiprotein complex may represent a novel therapeutic strategy for certain inflammatory diseases. PMID:22203670

  1. Understanding complex clinical reasoning in infectious diseases for improving clinical decision support design.

    PubMed

    Islam, Roosan; Weir, Charlene R; Jones, Makoto; Del Fiol, Guilherme; Samore, Matthew H

    2015-11-30

    Clinical experts' cognitive mechanisms for managing complexity have implications for the design of future innovative healthcare systems. The purpose of the study is to examine the constituents of decision complexity and explore the cognitive strategies clinicians use to control and adapt to their information environment. We used Cognitive Task Analysis (CTA) methods to interview 10 Infectious Disease (ID) experts at the University of Utah and Salt Lake City Veterans Administration Medical Center. Participants were asked to recall a complex, critical and vivid antibiotic-prescribing incident using the Critical Decision Method (CDM), a type of Cognitive Task Analysis (CTA). Using the four iterations of the Critical Decision Method, questions were posed to fully explore the incident, focusing in depth on the clinical components underlying the complexity. Probes were included to assess cognitive and decision strategies used by participants. The following three themes emerged as the constituents of decision complexity experienced by the Infectious Diseases experts: 1) the overall clinical picture does not match the pattern, 2) a lack of comprehension of the situation and 3) dealing with social and emotional pressures such as fear and anxiety. All these factors contribute to decision complexity. These factors almost always occurred together, creating unexpected events and uncertainty in clinical reasoning. Five themes emerged in the analyses of how experts deal with the complexity. Expert clinicians frequently used 1) watchful waiting instead of over- prescribing antibiotics, engaged in 2) theory of mind to project and simulate other practitioners' perspectives, reduced very complex cases into simple 3) heuristics, employed 4) anticipatory thinking to plan and re-plan events and consulted with peers to share knowledge, solicit opinions and 5) seek help on patient cases. The cognitive strategies to deal with decision complexity found in this study have important

  2. Long non-coding RNAs and complex diseases: from experimental results to computational models.

    PubMed

    Chen, Xing; Yan, Chenggang Clarence; Zhang, Xu; You, Zhu-Hong

    2017-07-01

    LncRNAs have attracted lots of attentions from researchers worldwide in recent decades. With the rapid advances in both experimental technology and computational prediction algorithm, thousands of lncRNA have been identified in eukaryotic organisms ranging from nematodes to humans in the past few years. More and more research evidences have indicated that lncRNAs are involved in almost the whole life cycle of cells through different mechanisms and play important roles in many critical biological processes. Therefore, it is not surprising that the mutations and dysregulations of lncRNAs would contribute to the development of various human complex diseases. In this review, we first made a brief introduction about the functions of lncRNAs, five important lncRNA-related diseases, five critical disease-related lncRNAs and some important publicly available lncRNA-related databases about sequence, expression, function, etc. Nowadays, only a limited number of lncRNAs have been experimentally reported to be related to human diseases. Therefore, analyzing available lncRNA-disease associations and predicting potential human lncRNA-disease associations have become important tasks of bioinformatics, which would benefit human complex diseases mechanism understanding at lncRNA level, disease biomarker detection and disease diagnosis, treatment, prognosis and prevention. Furthermore, we introduced some state-of-the-art computational models, which could be effectively used to identify disease-related lncRNAs on a large scale and select the most promising disease-related lncRNAs for experimental validation. We also analyzed the limitations of these models and discussed the future directions of developing computational models for lncRNA research. © The Author 2016. Published by Oxford University Press.

  3. Prevalence and spectrum of in utero structural brain abnormalities in fetuses with complex congenital heart disease.

    PubMed

    Brossard-Racine, M; du Plessis, A J; Vezina, G; Robertson, R; Bulas, D; Evangelou, I E; Donofrio, M; Freeman, D; Limperopoulos, C

    2014-08-01

    Brain injury is a major complication in neonates with complex congenital heart disease. Preliminary evidence suggests that fetuses with congenital heart disease are at greater risk for brain abnormalities. However, the nature and frequency of these brain abnormalities detected by conventional fetal MR imaging has not been examined prospectively. Our primary objective was to determine the prevalence and spectrum of brain abnormalities detected on conventional clinical MR imaging in fetuses with complex congenital heart disease and, second, to compare the congenital heart disease cohort with a control group of fetuses from healthy pregnancies. We prospectively recruited pregnant women with a confirmed fetal congenital heart disease diagnosis and healthy volunteers with normal fetal echocardiogram findings who underwent a fetal MR imaging between 18 and 39 weeks gestational age. A total of 338 fetuses (194 controls; 144 with congenital heart disease) were studied at a mean gestational age of 30.61 ± 4.67 weeks. Brain abnormalities were present in 23% of the congenital heart disease group compared with 1.5% in the control group (P < .001). The most common abnormalities in the congenital heart disease group were mild unilateral ventriculomegaly in 12/33 (36.4%) and increased extra-axial spaces in 10/33 (30.3%). Subgroup analyses comparing the type and frequency of brain abnormalities based on cardiac physiology did not reveal significant associations, suggesting that the brain abnormalities were not limited to those with the most severe congenital heart disease. This is the first large prospective study reporting conventional MR imaging findings in fetuses with congenital heart disease. Our results suggest that brain abnormalities are prevalent but relatively mild antenatally in fetuses with congenital heart disease. The long-term predictive value of these findings awaits further study. © 2014 by American Journal of Neuroradiology.

  4. Circulating microRNAs as novel biomarkers for bone diseases - Complex signatures for multifactorial diseases?

    PubMed

    Hackl, Matthias; Heilmeier, Ursula; Weilner, Sylvia; Grillari, Johannes

    2016-09-05

    Biomarkers are essential tools in clinical research and practice. Useful biomarkers must combine good measurability, validated association with biological processes or outcomes, and should support clinical decision making if used in clinical practice. Several types of validated biomarkers have been reported in the context of bone diseases. However, because these biomarkers face certain limitations there is an interest in the identification of novel biomarkers for bone diseases, specifically in those that are tightly linked to the disease pathology leading to increased fracture-risk. MicroRNAs (miRNAs) are the most abundant RNA species to be found in cell-free blood. Encapsulated within microvesicles or bound to proteins, circulating miRNAs are remarkably stable analytes that can be measured using gold-standard technologies such as quantitative polymerase-chain-reaction (qPCR). Nevertheless, the analysis of circulating miRNAs faces several pre-analytical as well as analytical challenges. From a biological view, there is accumulating evidence that miRNAs play essential roles in the regulation of various biological processes including bone homeostasis. Moreover, specific changes in miRNA transcription levels or miRNA secretory levels have been linked to the development and progression of certain bone diseases. Only recently, results from circulating miRNAs analysis in patients with osteopenia, osteoporosis and fragility fractures have been reported. By comparing these findings to studies on circulating miRNAs in cellular senescence and aging or muscle physiology and sarcopenia, several overlaps were observed. This suggests that signatures observed during osteoporosis might not be specific to the pathophysiology in bone, but rather integrate information from several tissue types. Despite these promising first data, more work remains to be done until circulating miRNAs can serve as established and robust diagnostic tools for bone diseases in clinical research, clinical

  5. Early-Life Stress Triggers Juvenile Zebra Finches to Switch Social Learning Strategies.

    PubMed

    Farine, Damien R; Spencer, Karen A; Boogert, Neeltje J

    2015-08-17

    Stress during early life can cause disease and cognitive impairment in humans and non-humans alike. However, stress and other environmental factors can also program developmental pathways. We investigate whether differential exposure to developmental stress can drive divergent social learning strategies between siblings. In many species, juveniles acquire essential foraging skills by copying others: they can copy peers (horizontal social learning), learn from their parents (vertical social learning), or learn from other adults (oblique social learning). However, whether juveniles' learning strategies are condition dependent largely remains a mystery. We found that juvenile zebra finches living in flocks socially learned novel foraging skills exclusively from adults. By experimentally manipulating developmental stress, we further show that social learning targets are phenotypically plastic. While control juveniles learned foraging skills from their parents, their siblings, exposed as nestlings to experimentally elevated stress hormone levels, learned exclusively from unrelated adults. Thus, early-life conditions triggered individuals to switch strategies from vertical to oblique social learning. This switch could arise from stress-induced differences in developmental rate, cognitive and physical state, or the use of stress as an environmental cue. Acquisition of alternative social learning strategies may impact juveniles' fit to their environment and ultimately change their developmental trajectories. Copyright © 2015 The Authors. Published by Elsevier Ltd.. All rights reserved.

  6. How well can fishes prey on zebra mussels in eastern North America?

    French, John R. P.

    1993-01-01

    Literature on mollusk-eating fishes was reviewed to determine the potential for different species of fish to control zebra mussels in eastern North America. At least six species are potential predators of zebra mussels because they possess (1) both upper and lower pharyngeal teeth or (2) lower pharyngeal teeth and chewing pads located on the dorsal roof for crushing mollusk shells. Freshwater drum (Aplodinotus grunniens) and two centrarchids, redear sunfish (Lepomis microlophus) and pumpkinseed (L. gibbosus), possess both upper and lower pharyngeal teeth and are likely to consume more zebra mussels than fishes with only lower pharyngeal teeth. Only two catostomid species, copper and river redhorses (Moxostoma hubbsi and M. carinatum), have chewing pads that enable them to crush mollusks. The exotic omnivorous common carp (Cyprinus carpio), possessing lower teeth and a chewing pad, may prey on zebra mussels when aquatic insect larvae, its preferred food, become rare. Managing populations of drum, sunfishes and redhorses to reduce exploitation of large individuals and improve their habitats are suggested as means to intensify biological control of zebra mussels in eastern North America. Other Eurasian molluscivores, the roach (Rutilus rutilus) and the black carp (Mylopharyngodon piceus) should not be introduced into North America because research has shown repeatedly that an introduced biological controller usually does not forage for unwanted pests or reside only in preferred habitats of pests. Drum, sunfishes and redhorses should be preferred over these exotics as biological controllers of zebra mussels in North America because these native fishes will likely occupy newly established habitats of zebra mussels.

  7. Zebra stripes in the Atacama Desert: Fossil evidence of overland flow

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Owen, Justine J.; Dietrich, William E.; Nishiizumi, Kuni; Chong, Guillermo; Amundson, Ronald

    2013-01-01

    Some hillslopes in the hyperarid region of the Atacama Desert in northern Chile have surface clasts organized into distinct, contour-parallel bands separated by bare soil. We call the bands "zebra stripes" due to the contrast between the darkly varnished clasts and the light-colored, salt-rich soil. Gravel that comprises the zebra stripes is sorted such that the coarsest clasts are at the downslope front and fine progressively upslope. How and when the zebra stripes formed are perplexing questions, particularly in a region experiencing prolonged hyperaridity. Using GoogleEarth, satellite imagery, and field observations, we report the first quantitative and qualitative observations of zebra stripes in order to test hypotheses of the mechanisms and timing of their formation. We consider soil shrink-swell, seismic shaking, and overland flow as possible formation mechanisms, and find that overland flow is the most likely. Based on cosmogenic 10Be concentrations in surface clasts, salt deposition rates from the atmosphere, and content in the soils, we propose that the salt-rich soils began accumulating ~ 106 y ago and the zebra stripes formed 103-104 y at the latest. The zebra stripe pattern has been preserved due to the self-stabilization of the clasts within the stripes and the continued absence of life (which would disturb the surface, as seen at a wetter site to the south). We conclude that the occurrence of zebra stripes is diagnostic of a set of distinct characteristics of local and/or regional precipitation, soil, hillslope form, and bedrock type.

  8. Performance and robustness of penalized and unpenalized methods for genetic prediction of complex human disease.

    PubMed

    Abraham, Gad; Kowalczyk, Adam; Zobel, Justin; Inouye, Michael

    2013-02-01

    A central goal of medical genetics is to accurately predict complex disease from genotypes. Here, we present a comprehensive analysis of simulated and real data using lasso and elastic-net penalized support-vector machine models, a mixed-effects linear model, a polygenic score, and unpenalized logistic regression. In simulation, the sparse penalized models achieved lower false-positive rates and higher precision than the other methods for detecting causal SNPs. The common practice of prefiltering SNP lists for subsequent penalized modeling was examined and shown to substantially reduce the ability to recover the causal SNPs. Using genome-wide SNP profiles across eight complex diseases within cross-validation, lasso and elastic-net models achieved substantially better predictive ability in celiac disease, type 1 diabetes, and Crohn's disease, and had equivalent predictive ability in the rest, with the results in celiac disease strongly replicating between independent datasets. We investigated the effect of linkage disequilibrium on the predictive models, showing that the penalized methods leverage this information to their advantage, compared with methods that assume SNP independence. Our findings show that sparse penalized approaches are robust across different disease architectures, producing as good as or better phenotype predictions and variance explained. This has fundamental ramifications for the selection and future development of methods to genetically predict human disease. © 2012 WILEY PERIODICALS, INC.

  9. Closed genomes of seven histophilus somni isolates from beef calves with bovine respiratory disease complex

    Histophilus somni is a fastidious gram-negative opportunistic pathogenic Pasteurellacea that affects multiple organ systems and is one of the principle bacterial species contributing to bovine respiratory disease complex (BRDC) in feed yard cattle. Here we present seven closed genomes isolated from...

  10. Sentence Production in Parkinson Disease: Effects of Conceptual and Task Complexity

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Troche, Michelle S.; Altmann, Lori J. P.

    2012-01-01

    Experimental studies of sentence production in Parkinson disease (PD) are rare. This study examined the relationship between cognitive abilities and performance on two sentence production tasks, sentence repetition, and sentence generation, in which complexity was manipulated. Thirty-eight older adults aged 60 to 85, half with PD, completed the…

  11. Linguistic Complexity, Speech Production, and Comprehension in Parkinson's Disease: Behavioral and Physiological Indices

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Walsh, Bridget; Smith, Anne

    2011-01-01

    Purpose: To investigate the effects of increased syntactic complexity and utterance length demands on speech production and comprehension in individuals with Parkinson's disease (PD) using behavioral and physiological measures. Method: Speech response latency, interarticulatory coordinative consistency, accuracy of speech production, and response…

  12. Intervention Fidelity for a Complex Behaviour Change Intervention in Community Pharmacy Addressing Cardiovascular Disease Risk

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    McNamara, K. P.; O'Reilly, S. L.; George, J.; Peterson, G. M.; Jackson, S. L.; Duncan, G.; Howarth, H.; Dunbar, J. A.

    2015-01-01

    Background: Delivery of cardiovascular disease (CVD) prevention programs by community pharmacists appears effective and enhances health service access. However, their capacity to implement complex behavioural change processes during patient counselling remains largely unexplored. This study aims to determine intervention fidelity by pharmacists…

  13. 78 FR 58316 - Complex Issues in Developing Medical Devices for Pediatric Patients Affected by Rare Diseases...

    Federal Register 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014

    2013-09-23

    ... DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH AND HUMAN SERVICES Food and Drug Administration [Docket No. FDA-2013-N-1073] Complex Issues in Developing Medical Devices for Pediatric Patients Affected by Rare Diseases; Public Workshop; Request for Comments AGENCY: Food and Drug Administration, HHS. ACTION: Notice of public workshop...

  14. Closed Genome Sequences of Seven Histophilus somni Isolates from Beef Calves with Bovine Respiratory Disease Complex

    PubMed Central

    Harhay, Dayna M.; Bono, James L.; Smith, Timothy P. L.; Capik, Sarah F.; DeDonder, Keith D.; Apley, Michael D.; Lubbers, Brian V.; White, Bradley J.; Larson, Robert L.

    2017-01-01

    ABSTRACT Histophilus somni is a fastidious Gram-negative opportunistic pathogenic Pasteurellaceae that affects multiple organ systems and is one of the principal bacterial species contributing to bovine respiratory disease complex (BRDC) in feed yard cattle. Here, we present seven closed genome sequences isolated from three beef calves showing sign of BRDC. PMID:28983006

  15. Closed Genome Sequences of Seven Histophilus somni Isolates from Beef Calves with Bovine Respiratory Disease Complex.

    PubMed

    Harhay, Gregory P; Harhay, Dayna M; Bono, James L; Smith, Timothy P L; Capik, Sarah F; DeDonder, Keith D; Apley, Michael D; Lubbers, Brian V; White, Bradley J; Larson, Robert L

    2017-10-05

    Histophilus somni is a fastidious Gram-negative opportunistic pathogenic Pasteurellaceae that affects multiple organ systems and is one of the principal bacterial species contributing to bovine respiratory disease complex (BRDC) in feed yard cattle. Here, we present seven closed genome sequences isolated from three beef calves showing sign of BRDC.

  16. Gerstmann-Straüssler-Scheinker disease: novel PRNP mutation and VGKC-complex antibodies.

    PubMed

    Jones, Matthew; Odunsi, Sola; du Plessis, Daniel; Vincent, Angela; Bishop, Matthew; Head, Mark W; Ironside, James W; Gow, David

    2014-06-10

    To describe a unique case of Gerstmann-Straüssler-Scheinker (GSS) disease caused by a novel prion protein (PRNP) gene mutation and associated with strongly positive voltage-gated potassium channel (VGKC)-complex antibodies (Abs). Clinical data were gathered from retrospective review of the case notes. Postmortem neuropathologic examination was performed, and DNA was extracted from frozen brain tissue for full sequence analysis of the PRNP gene. The patient was diagnosed in life with VGKC-complex Ab-associated encephalitis based on strongly positive VGKC-complex Ab titers but no detectable LGI1 or CASPR2 Abs. He died despite 1 year of aggressive immunosuppressive treatment. The neuropathologic diagnosis was GSS disease, and a novel mutation, P84S, in the PRNP gene was found. VGKC-complex Abs are described in an increasingly broad range of clinical syndromes, including progressive encephalopathies, and may be amenable to treatment with immunosuppression. However, the failure to respond to aggressive immunotherapy warns against VGKC-complex Abs being pathogenic, and their presence does not preclude the possibility of prion disease. © 2014 American Academy of Neurology.

  17. Identifying critical transitions and their leading biomolecular networks in complex diseases.

    PubMed

    Liu, Rui; Li, Meiyi; Liu, Zhi-Ping; Wu, Jiarui; Chen, Luonan; Aihara, Kazuyuki

    2012-01-01

    Identifying a critical transition and its leading biomolecular network during the initiation and progression of a complex disease is a challenging task, but holds the key to early diagnosis and further elucidation of the essential mechanisms of disease deterioration at the network level. In this study, we developed a novel computational method for identifying early-warning signals of the critical transition and its leading network during a disease progression, based on high-throughput data using a small number of samples. The leading network makes the first move from the normal state toward the disease state during a transition, and thus is causally related with disease-driving genes or networks. Specifically, we first define a state-transition-based local network entropy (SNE), and prove that SNE can serve as a general early-warning indicator of any imminent transitions, regardless of specific differences among systems. The effectiveness of this method was validated by functional analysis and experimental data.

  18. Decoding the complex genetic causes of heart diseases using systems biology.

    PubMed

    Djordjevic, Djordje; Deshpande, Vinita; Szczesnik, Tomasz; Yang, Andrian; Humphreys, David T; Giannoulatou, Eleni; Ho, Joshua W K

    2015-03-01

    The pace of disease gene discovery is still much slower than expected, even with the use of cost-effective DNA sequencing and genotyping technologies. It is increasingly clear that many inherited heart diseases have a more complex polygenic aetiology than previously thought. Understanding the role of gene-gene interactions, epigenetics, and non-coding regulatory regions is becoming increasingly critical in predicting the functional consequences of genetic mutations identified by genome-wide association studies and whole-genome or exome sequencing. A systems biology approach is now being widely employed to systematically discover genes that are involved in heart diseases in humans or relevant animal models through bioinformatics. The overarching premise is that the integration of high-quality causal gene regulatory networks (GRNs), genomics, epigenomics, transcriptomics and other genome-wide data will greatly accelerate the discovery of the complex genetic causes of congenital and complex heart diseases. This review summarises state-of-the-art genomic and bioinformatics techniques that are used in accelerating the pace of disease gene discovery in heart diseases. Accompanying this review, we provide an interactive web-resource for systems biology analysis of mammalian heart development and diseases, CardiacCode ( http://CardiacCode.victorchang.edu.au/ ). CardiacCode features a dataset of over 700 pieces of manually curated genetic or molecular perturbation data, which enables the inference of a cardiac-specific GRN of 280 regulatory relationships between 33 regulator genes and 129 target genes. We believe this growing resource will fill an urgent unmet need to fully realise the true potential of predictive and personalised genomic medicine in tackling human heart disease.

  19. Complex movement disorders at disease onset in childhood narcolepsy with cataplexy

    PubMed Central

    Pizza, Fabio; Palaia, Vincenzo; Franceschini, Christian; Poli, Francesca; Moghadam, Keivan K.; Cortelli, Pietro; Nobili, Lino; Bruni, Oliviero; Dauvilliers, Yves; Lin, Ling; Edwards, Mark J.; Mignot, Emmanuel; Bhatia, Kailash P.

    2011-01-01

    Narcolepsy with cataplexy is characterized by daytime sleepiness, cataplexy (sudden loss of bilateral muscle tone triggered by emotions), sleep paralysis, hypnagogic hallucinations and disturbed nocturnal sleep. Narcolepsy with cataplexy is most often associated with human leucocyte antigen-DQB1*0602 and is caused by the loss of hypocretin-producing neurons in the hypothalamus of likely autoimmune aetiology. Noting that children with narcolepsy often display complex abnormal motor behaviours close to disease onset that do not meet the classical definition of cataplexy, we systematically analysed motor features in 39 children with narcolepsy with cataplexy in comparison with 25 age- and sex-matched healthy controls. We found that patients with narcolepsy with cataplexy displayed a complex array of ‘negative’ (hypotonia) and ‘active’ (ranging from perioral movements to dyskinetic–dystonic movements or stereotypies) motor disturbances. ‘Active’ and ‘negative’ motor scores correlated positively with the presence of hypotonic features at neurological examination and negatively with disease duration, whereas ‘negative’ motor scores also correlated negatively with age at disease onset. These observations suggest that paediatric narcolepsy with cataplexy often co-occurs with a complex movement disorder at disease onset, a phenomenon that may vanish later in the course of the disease. Further studies are warranted to assess clinical course and whether the associated movement disorder is also caused by hypocretin deficiency or by additional neurochemical abnormalities. PMID:21930661

  20. DNA methylation in complex disease: applications in nursing research, practice, and policy.

    PubMed

    Wright, Michelle L; Ralph, Jody L; Ohm, Joyce E; Anderson, Cindy M

    2013-01-01

    DNA methylation is an epigenomic modification that is essential to normal human development and biological processes. DNA methylation patterns are heritable and dynamic throughout the life span. Environmental exposures can alter DNA methylation patterns, contributing to the development of complex disease. Identification and modulation of environmental factors influencing disease susceptibility through alterations in DNA methylation are amenable to nursing intervention and form the basis for individualized patient care. Here we describe the evidence supporting the translation of DNA methylation analyses as a tool for screening, diagnosis, and treatment of complex disease in nursing research and practice. The ethical, legal, social, and economic considerations of advances in genomics are considered as a model for epigenomic policy. We conclude that contemporary and informed nurse scientists and clinicians are uniquely poised to apply innovations in epigenomic research to clinical populations and develop appropriate policies that guide equitable and ethical use of new strategies to improve patient care. Copyright © 2013 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  1. Caenorhabditis elegans as an experimental tool for the study of complex neurological diseases: Parkinson's disease, Alzheimer's disease and autism spectrum disorder.

    PubMed

    Calahorro, Fernando; Ruiz-Rubio, Manuel

    2011-12-01

    The nematode Caenorhabditis elegans has a very well-defined and genetically tractable nervous system which offers an effective model to explore basic mechanistic pathways that might be underpin complex human neurological diseases. Here, the role C. elegans is playing in understanding two neurodegenerative conditions, Parkinson's and Alzheimer's disease (AD), and a complex neurological condition, autism, is used as an exemplar of the utility of this model system. C. elegans is an imperfect model of Parkinson's disease because it lacks orthologues of the human disease-related genes PARK1 and LRRK2 which are linked to the autosomal dominant form of this disease. Despite this fact, the nematode is a good model because it allows transgenic expression of these human genes and the study of the impact on dopaminergic neurons in several genetic backgrounds and environmental conditions. For AD, C. elegans has orthologues of the amyloid precursor protein and both human presenilins, PS1 and PS2. In addition, many of the neurotoxic properties linked with Aβ amyloid and tau peptides can be studied in the nematode. Autism spectrum disorder is a complex neurodevelopmental disorder characterised by impairments in human social interaction, difficulties in communication, and restrictive and repetitive behaviours. Establishing C. elegans as a model for this complex behavioural disorder is difficult; however, abnormalities in neuronal synaptic communication are implicated in the aetiology of the disorder. Numerous studies have associated autism with mutations in several genes involved in excitatory and inhibitory synapses in the mammalian brain, including neuroligin, neurexin and shank, for which there are C. elegans orthologues. Thus, several molecular pathways and behavioural phenotypes in C. elegans have been related to autism. In general, the nematode offers a series of advantages that combined with knowledge from other animal models and human research, provides a powerful

  2. Use of on-site refugia to protect unionid populations from zebra mussel-induced mortality

    Nichols, S. Jerrine; Black, M. Glen; Allen, Jeffrey D.

    2000-01-01

    Protecting unionid populations as zebra mussels spread into inland waterways has relied mainly on relocating at-risk animals into aquaculture facilities. While such relocations are the only viable management technique for some populations, facility availability is limited, leaving many unionids facing extirpation. Another management strategy is in-situ protection either by enhancing natural refugia or by creating managed refugia. We have reviewed all reports of natural refugia and found that refugia for unionids can be found in many areas. There are many habitats where zebra mussel colonization has been limited, or of a temporary nature. Within zebra mussel infested areas, unionid communities continue to survive in some shallow water sites such as estuaries, deltas, and lake-connected wetlands. Managed refugia can be created in areas where natural refugia do not exist. We present a case study on recent efforts to create refugia in an area with rapidly expanding zebra mussel populations. Preliminary analysis of unionid body condition indicates that removal of encrusted zebra mussels only once a year can improve unionid condition factors and decrease mortality. Natural and managed refugia can provide an additional conservation management option in some areas.

  3. Zebra textures in carbonate rocks: Fractures produced by the force of crystallization during mineral replacement

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wallace, Malcolm W.; Hood, Ashleigh v. S.

    2018-06-01

    Zebra textures are enigmatic banded fabrics that occur in many carbonate-hosted ore deposits, dolomite hydrocarbon reservoirs and carbonate successions globally. They consist of a variety of minerals and are characterised by parallel light and dark bands that occur at a millimetre- to centimetre-scale. Based on petrological evidence, there is general consensus that the dark bands formed by replacement of the carbonate host rock. Historically, more contention surrounds the origin of the light bands, but the dominant view is that these are mineral-filled cavities, which is supported by overwhelming textural evidence. Overall, the feature common to all versions of zebra textures is mineral replacement of the original carbonate host. We suggest that mineral replacement (and the force of crystallization) in association with open space generation is a viable mechanism for the development of zebra cavity systems. Dissolution and open space generation in either evaporites or carbonates adjacent to the site of replacement reactions is necessary to remove the confining pressure from the rock and to allow the development of fractures. The pressure of the growing replacement crystals within the carbonate pervasively splits the carbonate apart, producing thin strips of carbonate surrounded by open space. The fractures may then be subject to dissolution and are later filled by cements. Very regular stratabound zebra textures (as found in ore deposits like Cadjebut, Australia and San Vicente, Peru) may be related to stratabound dissolution (of evaporites or carbonates), whereas irregularly distributed zebra textures are more likely to be associated with irregular carbonate dissolution.

  4. The disassociation of visual and acoustic conspecific cues decreases discrimination by female zebra finches (Taeniopygia guttata).

    PubMed

    Campbell, Dana L M; Hauber, Mark E

    2009-08-01

    Female zebra finches (Taeniopygia guttata) use visual and acoustic traits for accurate recognition of male conspecifics. Evidence from video playbacks confirms that both sensory modalities are important for conspecific and species discrimination, but experimental evidence of the individual roles of these cue types affecting live conspecific recognition is limited. In a spatial paradigm to test discrimination, the authors used live male zebra finch stimuli of 2 color morphs, wild-type (conspecific) and white with a painted black beak (foreign), producing 1 of 2 vocalization types: songs and calls learned from zebra finch parents (conspecific) or cross-fostered songs and calls learned from Bengalese finch (Lonchura striata vars. domestica) foster parents (foreign). The authors found that female zebra finches consistently preferred males with conspecific visual and acoustic cues over males with foreign cues, but did not discriminate when the conspecific and foreign visual and acoustic cues were mismatched. These results indicate the importance of both visual and acoustic features for female zebra finches when discriminating between live conspecific males. Copyright 2009 APA, all rights reserved.

  5. Proximate and fatty acid composition of zebra (Equus quagga burchellii) muscle and subcutaneous fat.

    PubMed

    Hoffman, Louwrens C; Geldenhuys, Greta; Cawthorn, Donna-Mareè

    2016-08-01

    The meat from African game species is healthy, naturally produced and increasingly popular with consumers. Among these species, zebra (Equus quagga burchellii) are growing in number in South Africa, with the meat from surplus animals holding potential to contribute to food security and economic stability. Despite being consumed locally and globally, little information exists on the composition of zebra meat. This study aimed to determine the proximate composition of zebra meat as well as the fatty acid composition of the intramuscular (IMF) and subcutaneous (SCF) fat. Zebra longissimus lumborum muscle was shown to have a high mean protein content (22.29 g per 100 g) and low mean fat content (1.47 g per 100 g). High proportions of polyunsaturated fatty acids (PUFAs) were found in the IMF (41.15%) and SCF (37.71%), mainly comprising α-linolenic (C18:3n-3) and linoleic (C18:2n-6) acids. Furthermore, the IMF and SCF had favourable PUFA/saturated fatty acid ratios (>0.4) and omega-6/omega-3 ratios (<4), indicating that both components are healthy lipid food sources. This study has shed new light on the nutritional value of zebra meat, which will not only be important for food product labelling, nutritional education and incorporation into food composition databases, but will also be indispensable for marketing and export purposes. © 2016 Society of Chemical Industry. © 2016 Society of Chemical Industry.

  6. Seasonal effects of the zebra mussel (Dreissena polymorpha) on sediment denitrification rates in Pool 8 of the Upper Mississippi River

    Bruesewitz, Denise A.; Tank, Jennifer L.; Bernot, Melody J.; Richardson, William B.; Strauss, Eric A.

    2006-01-01

    Zebra mussels (Dreissena polymorpha) have altered the structure of invaded ecosystems and exhibit characteristics that suggest they may influence ecosystem processes such as nitrogen (N) cycling. We measured denitrification rates seasonally on sediments underlying zebra mussel beds collected from the impounded zone of Navigation Pool 8 of the Upper Mississippi River. Denitrification assays were amended with nutrients to characterize variation in nutrient limitation of denitrification in the presence or absence of zebra mussels. Denitrification rates at zebra mussel sites were high relative to sites without zebra mussels in February 2004 (repeated measures analysis of variance (RM ANOVA), p = 0.005), potentially because of high NO3-N variability from nitrification of high NH4+ zebra mussel waste. Denitrification rates were highest in June 2003 (RM ANOVA, p 3-N concentrations during the study (linear regression, R2 = 0.72, p p ≤ 0.01). Examining how zebra mussels influence denitrification rates will aid in developing a more complete understanding of the impact of zebra mussels and more effective management strategies of eutrophic waters.

  7. Effects of temperature and aerial exposure on the BOD of waste zebra mussels removed from navigational locks.

    PubMed

    Aldridge, D W; Payne, B S

    2001-08-01

    This laboratory study evaluated the effects of temperature and aerial exposure on BOD5 (5-day BOD) of waste zebra mussels of the type generated by maintenance operations on dams and navigational locks. The term waste zebra mussels includes the mussels and their associated debris with the latter including sediment, feces, pseudofeces and other small aquatic organisms. The BOD5 of waste zebra mussel was evaluated after aerial exposure of 3 and 10 days at temperatures of 5, 10, and 20 degrees C. The mean BOD5 values for waste zebra mussels in this study ranged from 18,500 to 30,600 mg O2/l. Factorial ANOVA analysis revealed that both temperature and aerial exposure had a negative effect on waste zebra mussel BOD5 (P<0.05) but there was no significant interaction effect (P = 0.119). Multiple regression analysis predicted that for the range of treatment conditions used in this study each 1 degrees C increase in temperature reduced the waste zebra mussel BOD5 by 284mg O2/l or 0.93% of the maximum mean BOD5. Each I day increase in aerial exposure reduced waste zebra mussel BOD5 by 987 mg O2/l or 3.22% of the maximum mean BOD5. Aerial exposure of waste zebra mussels substantially reduces waste BOD5.

  8. Next Generation Analytic Tools for Large Scale Genetic Epidemiology Studies of Complex Diseases

    PubMed Central

    Mechanic, Leah E.; Chen, Huann-Sheng; Amos, Christopher I.; Chatterjee, Nilanjan; Cox, Nancy J.; Divi, Rao L.; Fan, Ruzong; Harris, Emily L.; Jacobs, Kevin; Kraft, Peter; Leal, Suzanne M.; McAllister, Kimberly; Moore, Jason H.; Paltoo, Dina N.; Province, Michael A.; Ramos, Erin M.; Ritchie, Marylyn D.; Roeder, Kathryn; Schaid, Daniel J.; Stephens, Matthew; Thomas, Duncan C.; Weinberg, Clarice R.; Witte, John S.; Zhang, Shunpu; Zöllner, Sebastian; Feuer, Eric J.; Gillanders, Elizabeth M.

    2012-01-01

    Over the past several years, genome-wide association studies (GWAS) have succeeded in identifying hundreds of genetic markers associated with common diseases. However, most of these markers confer relatively small increments of risk and explain only a small proportion of familial clustering. To identify obstacles to future progress in genetic epidemiology research and provide recommendations to NIH for overcoming these barriers, the National Cancer Institute sponsored a workshop entitled “Next Generation Analytic Tools for Large-Scale Genetic Epidemiology Studies of Complex Diseases” on September 15–16, 2010. The goal of the workshop was to facilitate discussions on (1) statistical strategies and methods to efficiently identify genetic and environmental factors contributing to the risk of complex disease; and (2) how to develop, apply, and evaluate these strategies for the design, analysis, and interpretation of large-scale complex disease association studies in order to guide NIH in setting the future agenda in this area of research. The workshop was organized as a series of short presentations covering scientific (gene-gene and gene-environment interaction, complex phenotypes, and rare variants and next generation sequencing) and methodological (simulation modeling and computational resources and data management) topic areas. Specific needs to advance the field were identified during each session and are summarized. PMID:22147673

  9. Renal autotransplantation--a possibility in the treatment of complex renal vascular diseases and ureteric injuries.

    PubMed

    Hau, Hans Michael; Bartels, Michael; Tautenhahn, Hans-Michael; Morgul, Mehmet Haluk; Fellmer, Peter; Ho-Thi, Phuc; Benckert, Christoph; Uhlmann, Dirk; Moche, Michael; Thelen, Armin; Schmelzle, Moritz; Jonas, Sven

    2012-12-31

    We report our contemporary experiences with renal autotransplantation in patients with complicated renal vascular diseases and/or complex ureteral injuries. Since its first performance, renal autotransplantation has been steadily improved and become a safe and effective procedure. Between 1998 and 2006, 6 renal autotransplantations in 6 patients were performed at the University Medical Center of Leipzig. After nephrectomy and renal perfusion ex vivo, the kidney was implanted standardized in the fossa iliaca. The vessels were anastomized to the iliac vessels, the ureter was reimplanted in an extravesical tunneled ureteroneocystostomy technique according to Lich-Gregoir. Demographic, clinical, and laboratory data of the patients were collected and analyzed for pre-, intra-, and postoperative period. Indications for renal autotransplantation were complex renovascular diseases in 2 patients (1 with fibromuscular dysplasia and 1 with Takayasu's arteritis) and in 4 patients with complex ureteral injuries. The median duration of follow-up was 9.7 years (range: 5.6-13.3). The laboratory values of our 6 patients showed improvements of creatinine, urea and blood pressure levels in comparison to the preoperative status at the end of follow-up period. The present study reports excellent results of renal autotransplantation in patients with renovascular disease or complex ureteric injuries. After a median follow-up of 9.7 years all 6 patients present with stable renal function as well as normal blood pressure values. Postoperative complications were observed with a rate comparable to other studies.

  10. Mitochondrial disease associated with complex I (NADH-CoQ oxidoreductase) deficiency.

    PubMed

    Scheffler, Immo E

    2015-05-01

    Mitochondrial diseases due to a reduced capacity for oxidative phosphorylation were first identified more than 20 years ago, and their incidence is now recognized to be quite significant. In a large proportion of cases the problem can be traced to a complex I (NADH-CoQ oxidoreductase) deficiency (Phenotype MIM #252010). Because the complex consists of 44 subunits, there are many potential targets for pathogenic mutations, both on the nuclear and mitochondrial genomes. Surprisingly, however, almost half of the complex I deficiencies are due to defects in as yet unidentified genes that encode proteins other than the structural proteins of the complex. This review attempts to summarize what we know about the molecular basis of complex I deficiencies: mutations in the known structural genes, and mutations in an increasing number of genes encoding "assembly factors", that is, proteins required for the biogenesis of a functional complex I that are not found in the final complex I. More such genes must be identified before definitive genetic counselling can be applied in all cases of affected families.

  11. Identifying driving gene clusters in complex diseases through critical transition theory

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wolanyk, Nathaniel; Wang, Xujing; Hessner, Martin; Gao, Shouguo; Chen, Ye; Jia, Shuang

    A novel approach of looking at the human body using critical transition theory has yielded positive results: clusters of genes that act in tandem to drive complex disease progression. This cluster of genes can be thought of as the first part of a large genetic force that pushes the body from a curable, but sick, point to an incurable diseased point through a catastrophic bifurcation. The data analyzed is time course microarray blood assay data of 7 high risk individuals for Type 1 Diabetes who progressed into a clinical onset, with an additional larger study requested to be presented at the conference. The normalized data is 25,000 genes strong, which were narrowed down based on statistical metrics, and finally a machine learning algorithm using critical transition metrics found the driving network. This approach was created to be repeatable across multiple complex diseases with only progression time course data needed so that it would be applicable to identifying when an individual is at risk of developing a complex disease. Thusly, preventative measures can be enacted, and in the longer term, offers a possible solution to prevent all Type 1 Diabetes.

  12. Targeting the complex interactions between microbiota, host epithelial and immune cells in inflammatory bowel disease.

    PubMed

    Hirata, Yoshihiro; Ihara, Sozaburo; Koike, Kazuhiko

    2016-11-01

    Inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) is a chronic inflammatory intestinal disorder that includes two distinct disease categories: ulcerative colitis and Crohn's disease. Epidemiological, genetic, and experimental studies have revealed many important aspects of IBD. Genetic susceptibility, inappropriate immune responses, environmental changes, and intestinal microbiota are all associated with the development of IBD. However, the exact mechanisms of the disease and the interactions among these pathogenic factors are largely unknown. Here we introduce recent findings from experimental colitis models that investigated the interactions between host genetic susceptibility and gut microbiota. In addition, we discuss new strategies for the treatment of IBD, focusing on the complex interactions between microbiota and host epithelial and immune cells. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  13. Vaccine-preventable disease and the under-utilization of immunizations in complex humanitarian emergencies.

    PubMed

    Close, Ryan M; Pearson, Catherine; Cohn, Jennifer

    2016-09-07

    Complex humanitarian emergencies affect 40-60 million people annually and are a growing public health concern worldwide. Despite efforts to provide medical and public health services to populations affected by complex emergencies, significant morbidity and mortality persist. Measles is a major communicable disease threat, but through vaccination of broader target age groups beyond the traditional immunization schedule, measles-related mortality has been significantly reduced during crises. Yet, a limited number of vaccine-preventable diseases continue to contribute disproportionately to morbidity and mortality in complex emergencies. The literature suggests that Streptococcus pneumoniae, Rotavirus, and Haemophilus influenzae type-b should be key targets for vaccination programs. Because of the significant contribution of these three pathogens to complex humanitarian emergencies in low and middle-income countries regardless of disaster type, geography, or population, their vaccines should be considered essential components of the standard emergency response effort. We discuss the barriers to vaccine distribution and provide evidence for strategies to improve distribution, including expanded target age-range and reduced dose schedules. Our review includes specific recommendations for the expanded use of these three vaccines in complex emergencies in low and middle-income countries as a way to guide future policy discussions. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  14. Rotationally driven 'zebra stripes' in Earth's inner radiation belt.

    PubMed

    Ukhorskiy, A Y; Sitnov, M I; Mitchell, D G; Takahashi, K; Lanzerotti, L J; Mauk, B H

    2014-03-20

    Structured features on top of nominally smooth distributions of radiation-belt particles at Earth have been previously associated with particle acceleration and transport mechanisms powered exclusively by enhanced solar-wind activity. Although planetary rotation is considered to be important for particle acceleration at Jupiter and Saturn, the electric field produced in the inner magnetosphere by Earth's rotation can change the velocity of trapped particles by only about 1-2 kilometres per second, so rotation has been thought inconsequential for radiation-belt electrons with velocities of about 100,000 kilometres per second. Here we report that the distributions of energetic electrons across the entire spatial extent of Earth's inner radiation belt are organized in regular, highly structured and unexpected 'zebra stripes', even when the solar-wind activity is low. Modelling reveals that the patterns are produced by Earth's rotation. Radiation-belt electrons are trapped in Earth's dipole-like magnetic field, where they undergo slow longitudinal drift motion around the planet because of the gradient and curvature of the magnetic field. Earth's rotation induces global diurnal variations of magnetic and electric fields that resonantly interact with electrons whose drift period is close to 24 hours, modifying electron fluxes over a broad energy range into regular patterns composed of multiple stripes extending over the entire span of the inner radiation belt.

  15. Drinking Songs: Alcohol Effects on Learned Song of Zebra Finches

    PubMed Central

    Olson, Christopher R.; Owen, Devin C.; Ryabinin, Andrey E.; Mello, Claudio V.

    2014-01-01

    Speech impairment is one of the most intriguing and least understood effects of alcohol on cognitive function, largely due to the lack of data on alcohol effects on vocalizations in the context of an appropriate experimental model organism. Zebra finches, a representative songbird and a premier model for understanding the neurobiology of vocal production and learning, learn song in a manner analogous to how humans learn speech. Here we show that when allowed access, finches readily drink alcohol, increase their blood ethanol concentrations (BEC) significantly, and sing a song with altered acoustic structure. The most pronounced effects were decreased amplitude and increased entropy, the latter likely reflecting a disruption in the birds’ ability to maintain the spectral structure of song under alcohol. Furthermore, specific syllables, which have distinct acoustic structures, were differentially influenced by alcohol, likely reflecting a diversity in the neural mechanisms required for their production. Remarkably, these effects on vocalizations occurred without overt effects on general behavioral measures, and importantly, they occurred within a range of BEC that can be considered risky for humans. Our results suggest that the variable effects of alcohol on finch song reflect differential alcohol sensitivity of the brain circuitry elements that control different aspects of song production. They also point to finches as an informative model for understanding how alcohol affects the neuronal circuits that control the production of learned motor behaviors. PMID:25536524

  16. Neural correlates of nesting behavior in zebra finches (Taeniopygia guttata).

    PubMed

    Hall, Zachary J; Bertin, Marion; Bailey, Ida E; Meddle, Simone L; Healy, Susan D

    2014-05-01

    Nest building in birds involves a behavioral sequence (nest material collection and deposition in the nest) that offers a unique model for addressing how the brain sequences motor actions. In this study, we identified brain regions involved in nesting behavior in male and female zebra finches (Taeniopygia guttata). We used Fos immunohistochemistry to quantify production of the immediate early gene protein product Fos (a molecular indicator of neuronal activity) in the brain correlated this expression with the variation in nesting behavior. Using this technique, we found that neural circuitry involved in motor sequencing, social behavior, reward and motivation were active during nesting. Within pairs of nesting birds, the number of times a male picked up or deposited nesting material and the amount of time a female spent in the nest explained the variation in Fos expression in the anterior motor pathway, social behavior network, and reward neural circuits. Identification of the brain regions that are involved in nesting enables us to begin studying the roles of motor sequencing, context, and reward in construction behavior at the neural level. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  17. Neural correlates of nesting behavior in zebra finches (Taeniopygia guttata)

    PubMed Central

    Hall, Zachary J.; Bertin, Marion; Bailey, Ida E.; Meddle, Simone L.; Healy, Susan D.

    2014-01-01

    Nest building in birds involves a behavioral sequence (nest material collection and deposition in the nest) that offers a unique model for addressing how the brain sequences motor actions. In this study, we identified brain regions involved in nesting behavior in male and female zebra finches (Taeniopygia guttata). We used Fos immunohistochemistry to quantify production of the immediate early gene protein product Fos (a molecular indicator of neuronal activity) in the brain correlated this expression with the variation in nesting behavior. Using this technique, we found that neural circuitry involved in motor sequencing, social behavior, reward and motivation were active during nesting. Within pairs of nesting birds, the number of times a male picked up or deposited nesting material and the amount of time a female spent in the nest explained the variation in Fos expression in the anterior motor pathway, social behavior network, and reward neural circuits. Identification of the brain regions that are involved in nesting enables us to begin studying the roles of motor sequencing, context, and reward in construction behavior at the neural level. PMID:24508238

  18. Genome-wide association mapping identifies multiple loci for a canine SLE-related disease complex.

    PubMed

    Wilbe, Maria; Jokinen, Päivi; Truvé, Katarina; Seppala, Eija H; Karlsson, Elinor K; Biagi, Tara; Hughes, Angela; Bannasch, Danika; Andersson, Göran; Hansson-Hamlin, Helene; Lohi, Hannes; Lindblad-Toh, Kerstin

    2010-03-01

    The unique canine breed structure makes dogs an excellent model for studying genetic diseases. Within a dog breed, linkage disequilibrium is extensive, enabling genome-wide association (GWA) with only around 15,000 SNPs and fewer individuals than in human studies. Incidences of specific diseases are elevated in different breeds, indicating that a few genetic risk factors might have accumulated through drift or selective breeding. In this study, a GWA study with 81 affected dogs (cases) and 57 controls from the Nova Scotia duck tolling retriever breed identified five loci associated with a canine systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE)-related disease complex that includes both antinuclear antibody (ANA)-positive immune-mediated rheumatic disease (IMRD) and steroid-responsive meningitis-arteritis (SRMA). Fine mapping with twice as many dogs validated these loci. Our results indicate that the homogeneity of strong genetic risk factors within dog breeds allows multigenic disorders to be mapped with fewer than 100 cases and 100 controls, making dogs an excellent model in which to identify pathways involved in human complex diseases.

  19. Genetic discoveries and nursing implications for complex disease prevention and management.

    PubMed

    Frazier, Lorraine; Meininger, Janet; Halsey Lea, Dale; Boerwinkle, Eric

    2004-01-01

    The purpose of this article is to examine the management of patients with complex diseases, in light of recent genetic discoveries, and to explore how these genetic discoveries will impact nursing practice and nursing research. The nursing science processes discussed are not comprehensive of all nursing practice but, instead, are concentrated in areas where genetics will have the greatest influence. Advances in genetic science will revolutionize our approach to patients and to health care in the prevention, diagnosis, and treatment of disease, raising many issues for nursing research and practice. As the scope of genetics expands to encompass multifactorial disease processes, a continuing reexamination of the knowledge base is required for nursing practice, with incorporation of genetic knowledge into the repertoire of every nurse, and with advanced knowledge for nurses who select specialty roles in the genetics area. This article explores the impact of this revolution on nursing science and practice as well as the opportunities for nursing science and practice to participate fully in this revolution. Because of the high proportion of the population at risk for complex diseases and because nurses are occupied every day in the prevention, assessment, treatment, and therapeutic intervention of patients with such diseases in practice and research, there is great opportunity for nurses to improve health care through the application (nursing practice) and discovery (nursing research) of genetic knowledge.

  20. Zebra Crossing Spotter: Automatic Population of Spatial Databases for Increased Safety of Blind Travelers

    PubMed Central

    Ahmetovic, Dragan; Manduchi, Roberto; Coughlan, James M.; Mascetti, Sergio

    2016-01-01

    In this paper we propose a computer vision-based technique that mines existing spatial image databases for discovery of zebra crosswalks in urban settings. Knowing the location of crosswalks is critical for a blind person planning a trip that includes street crossing. By augmenting existing spatial databases (such as Google Maps or OpenStreetMap) with this information, a blind traveler may make more informed routing decisions, resulting in greater safety during independent travel. Our algorithm first searches for zebra crosswalks in satellite images; all candidates thus found are validated against spatially registered Google Street View images. This cascaded approach enables fast and reliable discovery and localization of zebra crosswalks in large image datasets. While fully automatic, our algorithm could also be complemented by a final crowdsourcing validation stage for increased accuracy. PMID:26824080

  1. The perception of regularity in an isochronous stimulus in zebra finches (Taeniopygia guttata) and humans.

    PubMed

    van der Aa, Jeroen; Honing, Henkjan; ten Cate, Carel

    2015-06-01

    Perceiving temporal regularity in an auditory stimulus is considered one of the basic features of musicality. Here we examine whether zebra finches can detect regularity in an isochronous stimulus. Using a go/no go paradigm we show that zebra finches are able to distinguish between an isochronous and an irregular stimulus. However, when the tempo of the isochronous stimulus is changed, it is no longer treated as similar to the training stimulus. Training with three isochronous and three irregular stimuli did not result in improvement of the generalization. In contrast, humans, exposed to the same stimuli, readily generalized across tempo changes. Our results suggest that zebra finches distinguish the different stimuli by learning specific local temporal features of each individual stimulus rather than attending to the global structure of the stimuli, i.e., to the temporal regularity. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  2. Associations among multiple markers and complex disease: models, algorithms, and applications.

    PubMed

    Assimes, Themistocles L; Olshen, Adam B; Narasimhan, Balasubramanian; Olshen, Richard A

    2008-01-01

    This chapter is a report on collaborations among its authors and others over many years. It devolves from our goal of understanding genes, their main and epistatic effects combined with interactions involving demographic and environmental features also, as together they predict genetically complex diseases. Thus, our goal is "association." Particular phenotypes of interest to us are hypertension, insulin resistance, angina, and myocardial infarction. Prediction of complex disease is notoriously difficult, though it would be made easier were we given strand-specific information on genotype. Unfortunately, with current technology, genotypic information comes to us "unphased." While obviously we have strand-specific information when genotype is homozygous, we do not have such information when genotype is heterozygous. To summarize, the ultimate goals of approaches we provide is to predict phenotype, typically untoward or not, within a specific window of time. Our approach is neither through linkage nor from finding haplotype frequencies per se.

  3. [Acute inpatient conservative multimodal treatment of complex and multifactorial orthopedic diseases in the ANOA concept].

    PubMed

    Psczolla, M

    2013-10-01

    In Germany there is a clear deficit in the non-operative treatment of chronic and complex diseases and pain disorders in acute care hospitals. Only about 20 % of the treatments are carried out in orthopedic hospitals. Hospitals specialized in manual medicine have therefore formed a working group on non-operative orthopedic manual medicine acute care clinics (ANOA). The ANOA has developed a multimodal assessment procedure called the OPS 8-977 which describes the structure and process quality of multimodal and interdisciplinary diagnosis and treatment of the musculoskeletal system. Patients are treated according to clinical pathways oriented on the clinical findings. The increased duration of treatment in the German diagnosis-related groups (DRG) system is compensated for with a supplemental remuneration. Thus, complex and multifactorial orthopedic diseases and pain disorders are conservatively and appropriately treated as inpatient departments of acute care hospitals.

  4. Protein-Protein Interaction Among the FoxP Family Members and their Regulation of Two Target Genes, VLDLR and CNTNAP2 in the Zebra Finch Song System

    PubMed Central

    Mendoza, Ezequiel; Scharff, Constance

    2017-01-01

    The Forkhead transcription factor FOXP2 is implicated in speech perception and production. The avian homolog, FoxP21 contributes to song learning and production in birds. In human cell lines, transcriptional activity of FOXP2 requires homo-dimerization or dimerization with paralogs FOXP1 or FOXP4. Whether FoxP dimerization occurs in the brain is unknown. We recently showed that FoxP1, FoxP2 and FoxP4 (FoxP1/2/4) proteins are co-expressed in neurons of Area X, a song control region in zebra finches. We now report on dimer- and oligomerization of zebra finch FoxPs and how this affects transcription. In cell lines and in the brain we identify homo- and hetero-dimers, and an oligomer composed of FoxP1/2/4. We further show that FoxP1/2 but not FoxP4 bind to the regulatory region of the target gene Contactin-associated protein-like 2 (CNTNAP2). In addition, we demonstrate that FoxP1/4 bind to the regulatory region of very low density lipoprotein receptor (VLDLR), as has been shown for FoxP2 previously. Interestingly, FoxP1/2/4 individually or in combinations regulate the promoters for SV40, zebra finch VLDLR and CNTNAP2 differentially. These data exemplify the potential for complex transcriptional regulation of FoxP1/2/4, highlighting the need for future functional studies dissecting their differential regulation in the brain. PMID:28507505

  5. ZebraZoom: an automated program for high-throughput behavioral analysis and categorization

    PubMed Central

    Mirat, Olivier; Sternberg, Jenna R.; Severi, Kristen E.; Wyart, Claire

    2013-01-01

    The zebrafish larva stands out as an emergent model organism for translational studies involving gene or drug screening thanks to its size, genetics, and permeability. At the larval stage, locomotion occurs in short episodes punctuated by periods of rest. Although phenotyping behavior is a key component of large-scale screens, it has not yet been automated in this model system. We developed ZebraZoom, a program to automatically track larvae and identify maneuvers for many animals performing discrete movements. Our program detects each episodic movement and extracts large-scale statistics on motor patterns to produce a quantification of the locomotor repertoire. We used ZebraZoom to identify motor defects induced by a glycinergic receptor antagonist. The analysis of the blind mutant atoh7 revealed small locomotor defects associated with the mutation. Using multiclass supervised machine learning, ZebraZoom categorized all episodes of movement for each larva into one of three possible maneuvers: slow forward swim, routine turn, and escape. ZebraZoom reached 91% accuracy for categorization of stereotypical maneuvers that four independent experimenters unanimously identified. For all maneuvers in the data set, ZebraZoom agreed with four experimenters in 73.2–82.5% of cases. We modeled the series of maneuvers performed by larvae as Markov chains and observed that larvae often repeated the same maneuvers within a group. When analyzing subsequent maneuvers performed by different larvae, we found that larva–larva interactions occurred as series of escapes. Overall, ZebraZoom reached the level of precision found in manual analysis but accomplished tasks in a high-throughput format necessary for large screens. PMID:23781175

  6. Rhenium(i) complexes of N-heterocyclic carbene ligands that bind to amyloid plaques of Alzheimer's disease.

    PubMed

    Chan, Chung Ying; Noor, Asif; McLean, Catriona A; Donnelly, Paul S; Barnard, Peter J

    2017-02-16

    A series of [Re(i)L(CO) 3 ] + complexes (where L is a bifunctional bis(NHC)-amine ligand) that are analogues of potential Tc-99m diagnostic imaging agents for Alzheimer's disease have been synthesised. One of the complexes bound to amyloid plaques in human frontal cortex brain tissue from subjects with Alzheimer's disease.

  7. Small molecule analysis and imaging of fatty acids in the zebra finch song system using time-of-flight-secondary ion mass spectrometry.

    PubMed

    Amaya, Kensey R; Sweedler, Jonathan V; Clayton, David F

    2011-08-01

    Fatty acids are central to brain metabolism and signaling, but their distributions within complex brain circuits have been difficult to study. Here we applied an emerging technique, time-of-flight secondary ion mass spectrometry (ToF-SIMS), to image specific fatty acids in a favorable model system for chemical analyses of brain circuits, the zebra finch (Taeniopygia guttata). The zebra finch, a songbird, produces complex learned vocalizations under the control of an interconnected set of discrete, dedicated brain nuclei 'song nuclei'. Using ToF-SIMS, the major song nuclei were visualized by virtue of differences in their content of essential and non-essential fatty acids. Essential fatty acids (arachidonic acid and docosahexaenoic acid) showed distinctive distributions across the song nuclei, and the 18-carbon fatty acids stearate and oleate discriminated the different core and shell subregions of the lateral magnocellular nucleus of the anterior nidopallium. Principal component analysis of the spectral data set provided further evidence of chemical distinctions between the song nuclei. By analyzing the robust nucleus of the arcopallium at three different ages during juvenile song learning, we obtain the first direct evidence of changes in lipid content that correlate with progression of song learning. The results demonstrate the value of ToF-SIMS to study lipids in a favorable model system for probing the function of lipids in brain organization, development and function. © 2011 The Authors. Journal of Neurochemistry © 2011 International Society for Neurochemistry.

  8. Systems Genetics as a Tool to Identify Master Genetic Regulators in Complex Disease.

    PubMed

    Moreno-Moral, Aida; Pesce, Francesco; Behmoaras, Jacques; Petretto, Enrico

    2017-01-01

    Systems genetics stems from systems biology and similarly employs integrative modeling approaches to describe the perturbations and phenotypic effects observed in a complex system. However, in the case of systems genetics the main source of perturbation is naturally occurring genetic variation, which can be analyzed at the systems-level to explain the observed variation in phenotypic traits. In contrast with conventional single-variant association approaches, the success of systems genetics has been in the identification of gene networks and molecular pathways that underlie complex disease. In addition, systems genetics has proven useful in the discovery of master trans-acting genetic regulators of functional networks and pathways, which in many cases revealed unexpected gene targets for disease. Here we detail the central components of a fully integrated systems genetics approach to complex disease, starting from assessment of genetic and gene expression variation, linking DNA sequence variation to mRNA (expression QTL mapping), gene regulatory network analysis and mapping the genetic control of regulatory networks. By summarizing a few illustrative (and successful) examples, we highlight how different data-modeling strategies can be effectively integrated in a systems genetics study.

  9. Unraveling human complexity and disease with systems biology and personalized medicine

    PubMed Central

    Naylor, Stephen; Chen, Jake Y

    2010-01-01

    We are all perplexed that current medical practice often appears maladroit in curing our individual illnesses or disease. However, as is often the case, a lack of understanding, tools and technologies are the root cause of such situations. Human individuality is an often-quoted term but, in the context of human biology, it is poorly understood. This is compounded when there is a need to consider the variability of human populations. In the case of the former, it is possible to quantify human complexity as determined by the 35,000 genes of the human genome, the 1–10 million proteins (including antibodies) and the 2000–3000 metabolites of the human metabolome. Human variability is much more difficult to assess, since many of the variables, such as the definition of race, are not even clearly agreed on. In order to accommodate human complexity, variability and its influence on health and disease, it is necessary to undertake a systematic approach. In the past decade, the emergence of analytical platforms and bioinformatics tools has led to the development of systems biology. Such an approach offers enormous potential in defining key pathways and networks involved in optimal human health, as well as disease onset, progression and treatment. The tools and technologies now available in systems biology analyses offer exciting opportunities to exploit the emerging areas of personalized medicine. In this article, we discuss the current status of human complexity, and how systems biology and personalized medicine can impact at the individual and population level. PMID:20577569

  10. Percutaneous treatment of complex biliary stone disease using endourological technique and literature review

    PubMed Central

    Korkes, Fernando; Carneiro, Ariê; Nasser, Felipe; Affonso, Breno Boueri; Galastri, Francisco Leonardo; de Oliveira, Marcos Belotto; Macedo, Antônio Luiz de Vasconcellos

    2015-01-01

    Most biliary stone diseases need to be treated surgically. However, in special cases that traditional biliary tract endoscopic access is not allowed, a multidisciplinary approach using hybrid technique with urologic instrumental constitute a treatment option. We report a case of a patient with complex intrahepatic stones who previously underwent unsuccessful conventional approaches, and who symptoms resolved after treatment with hybrid technique using an endourologic technology. We conducted an extensive literature review until October 2012 of manuscripts indexed in PubMed on the treatment of complex gallstones with hybrid technique. The multidisciplinary approach with hybrid technique using endourologic instrumental represents a safe and effective treatment option for patients with complex biliary stone who cannot conduct treatment with conventional methods. PMID:26061073

  11. Comparison of Family History and SNPs for Predicting Risk of Complex Disease

    PubMed Central

    Do, Chuong B.; Hinds, David A.; Francke, Uta; Eriksson, Nicholas

    2012-01-01

    The clinical utility of family history and genetic tests is generally well understood for simple Mendelian disorders and rare subforms of complex diseases that are directly attributable to highly penetrant genetic variants. However, little is presently known regarding the performance of these methods in situations where disease susceptibility depends on the cumulative contribution of multiple genetic factors of moderate or low penetrance. Using quantitative genetic theory, we develop a model for studying the predictive ability of family history and single nucleotide polymorphism (SNP)–based methods for assessing risk of polygenic disorders. We show that family history is most useful for highly common, heritable conditions (e.g., coronary artery disease), where it explains roughly 20%–30% of disease heritability, on par with the most successful SNP models based on associations discovered to date. In contrast, we find that for diseases of moderate or low frequency (e.g., Crohn disease) family history accounts for less than 4% of disease heritability, substantially lagging behind SNPs in almost all cases. These results indicate that, for a broad range of diseases, already identified SNP associations may be better predictors of risk than their family history–based counterparts, despite the large fraction of missing heritability that remains to be explained. Our model illustrates the difficulty of using either family history or SNPs for standalone disease prediction. On the other hand, we show that, unlike family history, SNP–based tests can reveal extreme likelihood ratios for a relatively large percentage of individuals, thus providing potentially valuable adjunctive evidence in a differential diagnosis. PMID:23071447

  12. Ocean warming and acidification have complex interactive effects on the dynamics of a marine fungal disease

    PubMed Central

    Williams, Gareth J.; Price, Nichole N.; Ushijima, Blake; Aeby, Greta S.; Callahan, Sean; Davy, Simon K.; Gove, Jamison M.; Johnson, Maggie D.; Knapp, Ingrid S.; Shore-Maggio, Amanda; Smith, Jennifer E.; Videau, Patrick; Work, Thierry M.

    2014-01-01

    Diseases threaten the structure and function of marine ecosystems and are contributing to the global decline of coral reefs. We currently lack an understanding of how climate change stressors, such as ocean acidification (OA) and warming, may simultaneously affect coral reef disease dynamics, particularly diseases threatening key reef-building organisms, for example crustose coralline algae (CCA). Here, we use coralline fungal disease (CFD), a previously described CCA disease from the Pacific, to examine these simultaneous effects using both field observations and experimental manipulations. We identify the associated fungus as belonging to the subphylum Ustilaginomycetes and show linear lesion expansion rates on individual hosts can reach 6.5 mm per day. Further, we demonstrate for the first time, to our knowledge, that ocean-warming events could increase the frequency of CFD outbreaks on coral reefs, but that OA-induced lowering of pH may ameliorate outbreaks by slowing lesion expansion rates on individual hosts. Lowered pH may still reduce overall host survivorship, however, by reducing calcification and facilitating fungal bio-erosion. Such complex, interactive effects between simultaneous extrinsic environmental stressors on disease dynamics are important to consider if we are to accurately predict the response of coral reef communities to future climate change. PMID:24452029

  13. Ocean warming and acidification have complex interactive effects on the dynamics of a marine fungal disease.

    PubMed

    Williams, Gareth J; Price, Nichole N; Ushijima, Blake; Aeby, Greta S; Callahan, Sean; Davy, Simon K; Gove, Jamison M; Johnson, Maggie D; Knapp, Ingrid S; Shore-Maggio, Amanda; Smith, Jennifer E; Videau, Patrick; Work, Thierry M

    2014-03-07

    Diseases threaten the structure and function of marine ecosystems and are contributing to the global decline of coral reefs. We currently lack an understanding of how climate change stressors, such as ocean acidification (OA) and warming, may simultaneously affect coral reef disease dynamics, particularly diseases threatening key reef-building organisms, for example crustose coralline algae (CCA). Here, we use coralline fungal disease (CFD), a previously described CCA disease from the Pacific, to examine these simultaneous effects using both field observations and experimental manipulations. We identify the associated fungus as belonging to the subphylum Ustilaginomycetes and show linear lesion expansion rates on individual hosts can reach 6.5 mm per day. Further, we demonstrate for the first time, to our knowledge, that ocean-warming events could increase the frequency of CFD outbreaks on coral reefs, but that OA-induced lowering of pH may ameliorate outbreaks by slowing lesion expansion rates on individual hosts. Lowered pH may still reduce overall host survivorship, however, by reducing calcification and facilitating fungal bio-erosion. Such complex, interactive effects between simultaneous extrinsic environmental stressors on disease dynamics are important to consider if we are to accurately predict the response of coral reef communities to future climate change.

  14. Ocean warming and acidification have complex interactive effects on the dynamics of a marine fungal disease

    Williams, Gareth J.; Price, Nichole N.; Ushijima, Blake; Aeby, Greta S.; Callahan, Sean M.; Davy, Simon K.; Gove, Jamison M.; Johnson, Maggie D.; Knapp, Ingrid S.; Shore-Maggio, Amanda; Smith, Jennifer E.; Videau, Patrick; Work, Thierry M.

    2014-01-01

    Diseases threaten the structure and function of marine ecosystems and are contributing to the global decline of coral reefs. We currently lack an understanding of how climate change stressors, such as ocean acidification (OA) and warming, may simultaneously affect coral reef disease dynamics, particularly diseases threatening key reef-building organisms, for example crustose coralline algae (CCA). Here, we use coralline fungal disease (CFD), a previously described CCA disease from the Pacific, to examine these simultaneous effects using both field observations and experimental manipulations. We identify the associated fungus as belonging to the subphylum Ustilaginomycetes and show linear lesion expansion rates on individual hosts can reach 6.5 mm per day. Further, we demonstrate for the first time, to our knowledge, that ocean-warming events could increase the frequency of CFD outbreaks on coral reefs, but that OA-induced lowering of pH may ameliorate outbreaks by slowing lesion expansion rates on individual hosts. Lowered pH may still reduce overall host survivorship, however, by reducing calcification and facilitating fungal bio-erosion. Such complex, interactive effects between simultaneous extrinsic environmental stressors on disease dynamics are important to consider if we are to accurately predict the response of coral reef communities to future climate change.

  15. Identifying strains that contribute to complex diseases through the study of microbial inheritance

    PubMed Central

    Faith, Jeremiah J.; Colombel, Jean-Frédéric; Gordon, Jeffrey I.

    2015-01-01

    It has been 35 y since Carl Woese reported in PNAS how sequencing ribosomal RNA genes could be used to distinguish the three domains of life on Earth. During the past decade, 16S rDNA sequencing has enabled the now frequent enumeration of bacterial communities that populate the bodies of humans representing different ages, cultural traditions, and health states. A challenge going forward is to quantify the contributions of community members to wellness, disease risk, and disease pathogenesis. Here, we explore a theoretical framework for studies of the inheritance of bacterial strains and discuss the advantages and disadvantages of various study designs for assessing the contribution of strains to complex diseases. PMID:25576328

  16. Translating Mendelian and complex inheritance of Alzheimer's disease genes for predicting unique personal genome variants

    PubMed Central

    Regan, Kelly; Wang, Kanix; Doughty, Emily; Li, Haiquan; Li, Jianrong; Lee, Younghee; Kann, Maricel G

    2012-01-01

    Objective Although trait-associated genes identified as complex versus single-gene inheritance differ substantially in odds ratio, the authors nonetheless posit that their mechanistic concordance can reveal fundamental properties of the genetic architecture, allowing the automated interpretation of unique polymorphisms within a personal genome. Materials and methods An analytical method, SPADE-gen, spanning three biological scales was developed to demonstrate the mechanistic concordance between Mendelian and complex inheritance of Alzheimer's disease (AD) genes: biological functions (BP), protein interaction modeling, and protein domain implicated in the disease-associated polymorphism. Results Among Gene Ontology (GO) biological processes (BP) enriched at a false detection rate <5% in 15 AD genes of Mendelian inheritance (Online Mendelian Inheritance in Man) and independently in those of complex inheritance (25 host genes of intragenic AD single-nucleotide polymorphisms confirmed in genome-wide association studies), 16 overlapped (empirical p=0.007) and 45 were similar (empirical p<0.009; information theory). SPAN network modeling extended the canonical pathway of AD (KEGG) with 26 new protein interactions (empirical p<0.0001). Discussion The study prioritized new AD-associated biological mechanisms and focused the analysis on previously unreported interactions associated with the biological processes of polymorphisms that affect specific protein domains within characterized AD genes and their direct interactors using (1) concordant GO-BP and (2) domain interactions within STRING protein–protein interactions corresponding to the genomic location of the AD polymorphism (eg, EPHA1, APOE, and CD2AP). Conclusion These results are in line with unique-event polymorphism theory, indicating how disease-associated polymorphisms of Mendelian or complex inheritance relate genetically to those observed as ‘unique personal variants’. They also provide insight for

  17. The ZEBRA electric vehicle battery: power and energy improvements

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Galloway, Roy C.; Haslam, Steven

    Vehicle trials with the first sodium/nickel chloride ZEBRA batteries indicated that the pulse power capability of the battery needed to be improved towards the end of the discharge. A research programme led to several design changes to improve the cell which, in combination, have improved the power of the battery to greater than 150 W kg -1 at 80% depth of discharge. Bench and vehicle tests have established the stability of the high power battery over several years of cycling. The gravimetric energy density of the first generation of cells was less than 100 Wh kg -1. Optimisation of the design has led to a cell with a specific energy of 120 Wh kg -1 or 86 Wh kg -1 for a 30 kWh battery. Recently, the cell chemistry has been altered to improve the useful capacity. The cell is assembled in the over-discharged state and during the first charge the following reactions occur: at 1.6 V: Al+4NaCl=NaAlCl 4+3Na; at 2.35 V: Fe+2NaCl=FeCl 2+2Na; at 2.58 V: Ni+2NaCl=NiCl 2+2 Na. The first reaction serves to prime the negative sodium electrode but occurs at too low a voltage to be of use in providing useful capacity. By minimising the aluminium content more NaCl is released for the main reactions to improve the capacity of the cell. This, and further composition optimisation, have resulted in cells with specific energies in excess of 140 Wh kg -1, which equates to battery energies>100 Wh kg -1. The present production battery, as installed in a Mercedes Benz A class electric vehicle, gives a driving range of 205 km (128 miles) in city and hill climbing. The cells with improved capacity will extend the practical driving range to beyond 240 km (150 miles).

  18. Developmental stress increases reproductive success in male zebra finches.

    PubMed

    Crino, Ondi L; Prather, Colin T; Driscoll, Stephanie C; Good, Jeffrey M; Breuner, Creagh W

    2014-11-22

    There is increasing evidence that exposure to stress during development can have sustained effects on animal phenotype and performance across life-history stages. For example, developmental stress has been shown to decrease the quality of sexually selected traits (e.g. bird song), and therefore is thought to decrease reproductive success. However, animals exposed to developmental stress may compensate for poor quality sexually selected traits by pursuing alternative reproductive tactics. Here, we examine the effects of developmental stress on adult male reproductive investment and success in the zebra finch (Taeniopygia guttata). We tested the hypothesis that males exposed to developmental stress sire fewer offspring through extra-pair copulations (EPCs), but invest more in parental care. To test this hypothesis, we fed nestlings corticosterone (CORT; the dominant avian stress hormone) during the nestling period and measured their adult reproductive success using common garden breeding experiments. We found that nestlings reared by CORT-fed fathers received more parental care compared with nestlings reared by control fathers. Consequently, males fed CORT during development reared nestlings in better condition compared with control males. Contrary to the prediction that developmental stress decreases male reproductive success, we found that CORT-fed males also sired more offspring and were less likely to rear non-genetic offspring compared with control males, and thus had greater overall reproductive success. These data are the first to demonstrate that developmental stress can have a positive effect on fitness via changes in reproductive success and provide support for an adaptive role of developmental stress in shaping animal phenotype. © 2014 The Author(s) Published by the Royal Society. All rights reserved.

  19. Antennal phenotype of Mexican haplogroups of the Triatoma dimidiata complex, vectors of Chagas disease.

    PubMed

    May-Concha, Irving; Guerenstein, Pablo G; Ramsey, Janine M; Rojas, Julio C; Catalá, Silvia

    2016-06-01

    Triatoma dimidiata (Latreille) is a species complex that spans North, Central, and South America and which is a key vector of all known discrete typing units (DTU) of Trypanosoma cruzi, the etiologic agent of Chagas disease. Morphological and genetic studies indicate that T. dimidiata is a species complex with three principal haplogroups (hg) in Mexico. Different markers and traits are still inconclusive regarding if other morphological differentiation may indicate probable behavioral and vectorial divergences within this complex. In this paper we compared the antennae of three Mexican haplogroups (previously verified by molecular markers ND4 and ITS-2) and discussed possible relationships with their capacity to disperse and colonized new habitats. The abundance of each type of sensillum (bristles, basiconics, thick- and thin-walled trichoids) on the antennae of the three haplogroups, were measured under light microscopy and compared using Kruskal-Wallis non-parametric and multivariate non-parametric analyses. Discriminant analyses indicate significant differences among the antennal phenotype of haplogroups either for adults and some nymphal stages, indicating consistency of the character to analyze intraspecific variability within the complex. The present study shows that the adult antennal pedicel of the T. dimidiata complex have abundant chemosensory sensilla, according with good capacity for dispersal and invasion of different habitats also related to their high capacity to adapt to conserved as well as modified habitats. However, the numerical differences among the haplogroups are suggesting variations in that capacity. The results here presented support the evidence of T. dimidiata as a species complex but show females and males in a different way. Given the close link between the bug's sensory system and its habitat and host-seeking behavior, AP characterization could be useful to complement genetic, neurological and ethological studies of the closely

  20. Evaluating the metagenome of two sampling locations in the nasal cavity of cattle with bovine respiratory disease complex

    Bovine respiratory disease complex (BRDC) is a multi-factor disease, and disease incidence may be associated with an animal’s commensal microbiota (metagenome). Evaluation of the animal’s resident microbiota in the nasal cavity may help us to understand the impact of the metagenome on incidence of ...

  1. Evaluating the microbiome of two sampling locations in the nasal cavity of cattle with bovine respiratory disease complex (BRDC)

    Bovine respiratory disease complex (BRDC) is a multi-factor disease, and disease incidence may be associated with an animal’s commensal microbiota (metagenome). Evaluation of the animal’s resident microbiota in the nasal cavity may help us to understand the impact of the metagenome on incidence of ...

  2. Parasite-mediated selection drives an immunogenetic trade-off in plains zebras (Equus quagga)

    PubMed Central

    Kamath, Pauline L.; Turner, Wendy C.; Küsters, Martina; Getz, Wayne M.

    2014-01-01

    Pathogen evasion of the host immune system is a key force driving extreme polymorphism in genes of the major histocompatibility complex (MHC). Although this gene family is well characterized in structure and function, there is still much debate surrounding the mechanisms by which MHC diversity is selectively maintained. Many studies have investigated relationships between MHC variation and specific pathogens, and have found mixed support for and against the hypotheses of heterozygote advantage, frequency-dependent or fluctuating selection. Few, however, have focused on the selective effects of multiple parasite types on host immunogenetic patterns. Here, we examined relationships between variation in the equine MHC gene, ELA-DRA, and both gastrointestinal (GI) and ectoparasitism in plains zebras (Equus quagga). Specific alleles present at opposing population frequencies had antagonistic effects, with rare alleles associated with increased GI parasitism and common alleles with increased tick burdens. These results support a frequency-dependent mechanism, but are also consistent with fluctuating selection. Maladaptive GI parasite ‘susceptibility alleles’ were reduced in frequency, suggesting that these parasites may play a greater selective role at this locus. Heterozygote advantage, in terms of allele mutational divergence, also predicted decreased GI parasite burden in genotypes with a common allele. We conclude that an immunogenetic trade-off affects resistance/susceptibility to parasites in this system. Because GI and ectoparasites do not directly interact within hosts, our results uniquely show that antagonistic parasite interactions can be indirectly modulated through the host immune system. This study highlights the importance of investigating the role of multiple parasites in shaping patterns of host immunogenetic variation. PMID:24718761

  3. Parasite-mediated selection drives an immunogenetic tradeoff in plains zebra (Equus quagga)

    Kamath, Pauline L.; Turner, Wendy C.; Küsters, Martina; Getz, Wayne M.

    2014-01-01

    Pathogen evasion of the host immune system is a key force driving extreme polymorphism in genes of the major histocompatibility complex (MHC). Although this gene family is well characterized in structure and function, there is still much debate surrounding the mechanisms by which MHC diversity is selectively maintained. Many studies have investigated relationships between MHC variation and specific pathogens, and have found mixed support for and against the hypotheses of heterozygote advantage, frequency-dependent or fluctuating selection. Few, however, have focused on the selective effects of multiple parasite types on host immunogenetic patterns. Here, we examined relationships between variation in the equine MHC gene, ELA-DRA, and both gastrointestinal (GI) and ectoparasitism in plains zebras (Equus quagga). Specific alleles present at opposing population frequencies had antagonistic effects, with rare alleles associated with increased GI parasitism and common alleles with increased tick burdens. These results support a frequency-dependent mechanism, but are also consistent with fluctuating selection. Maladaptive GI parasite ‘susceptibility alleles’ were reduced in frequency, suggesting that these parasites may play a greater selective role at this locus. Heterozygote advantage, in terms of allele mutational divergence, also predicted decreased GI parasite burden in genotypes with a common allele. We conclude that an immunogenetic trade-off affects resistance/susceptibility to parasites in this system. Because GI and ectoparasites do not directly interact within hosts, our results uniquely show that antagonistic parasite interactions can be indirectly modulated through the host immune system. This study highlights the importance of investigating the role of multiple parasites in shaping patterns of host immunogenetic variation.

  4. Realistic mixture of illicit drugs impaired the oxidative status of the zebra mussel (Dreissena polymorpha).

    PubMed

    Parolini, Marco; Magni, Stefano; Castiglioni, Sara; Zuccato, Ettore; Binelli, Andrea

    2015-06-01

    Illicit drugs are considered to be emerging aquatic pollutants since they are commonly found in freshwater ecosystems in the high ng L(-1) to low μg L(-1) range concentrations. Although the environmental occurrence of the most common psychoactive compounds is well known, recently some investigations showed their potential toxicity toward non-target aquatic organisms. However, to date, these studies completely neglected that organisms in the real environment are exposed to a complex mixture, which could lead to dissimilar adverse effects. The present study investigated the oxidative alterations of the freshwater bivalve Dreissena polymorpha induced by a 14-d exposure to an environmentally relevant mixture of the most common illicit drugs found in the aquatic environment, namely cocaine (50 ng L(-1)), benzoylecgonine (300 ng L(-1)), amphetamine (300 ng L(-1)), morphine (100 ng L(-1)) and 3,4-methylenedioxymethamphetamine (50 ng L(-1)). The total oxidant status (TOS) was measured to investigate the increase in the reactive oxygen species' levels, while the activity of antioxidant enzymes and glutathione S-transferase were measured to note the eventual imbalances between pro-oxidant and antioxidant molecules. In addition, oxidative damage was assessed by measuring the levels of lipid peroxidation and protein carbonylation. Significant time-dependent increases of all the antioxidant activities were induced by the mixture. Moreover, the illicit drug mixture significantly increased the levels of carbonylated proteins and caused a slight variation in lipid peroxidation. Our results showed that a mixture of illicit drugs at realistic environmental concentrations can impair the oxidative status of the zebra mussel, posing a serious hazard to the health status of this bivalve species. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  5. Executive Functioning and School Performance Among Pediatric Survivors of Complex Congenital Heart Disease

    PubMed Central

    Gerstle, Melissa; Beebe, Dean W.; Drotar, Dennis; Cassedy, Amy; Marino, Bradley S.

    2016-01-01

    Objective To investigate the presence and severity of real-world impairments in executive functioning– responsible for children’s regulatory skills (metacognition, behavioral regulation) – and its potential impact on school performance among pediatric survivors of complex congenital heart disease (CHD). Study design Survivors of complex CHD aged 8–16 years (n=143)and their parents/guardians from a regional CHD survivor registry participated (81% participation rate). Parents completed proxy measures of executive functioning, school competency, and school-related quality of life (QOL). Patients also completed a measure of school QOL and underwent IQ testing. Patients were categorized into two groups based on heart lesion complexity: two-ventricle or single-ventricle. Results Survivors of complex CHD performed significantly worse than norms for executive functioning, IQ, school competency, and school QOL. Metacognition was more severely affected than behavioral regulation, and metacognitive deficits were more often present in older children. Even after taking into account demographic factors, disease severity, and IQ, metacognition uniquely and strongly predicted poorer school performance. In exploratory analyses, patients with single-ventricle lesions were rated as having lower school competency and school QOL, and patients with two-ventricle lesions were rated as having poorer behavioral regulation. Conclusions Survivors of complex CHD experience greater executive functioning difficulties than healthy peers, with metacognition particularly impacted and particularly relevant for day-to-day school performance. Especially in older children, clinicians should watch for metacognitive deficits, such as problems with organization, planning, self-monitoring, and follow-through on tasks. PMID:26875011

  6. Decreased Complexity in Alzheimer's Disease: Resting-State fMRI Evidence of Brain Entropy Mapping.

    PubMed

    Wang, Bin; Niu, Yan; Miao, Liwen; Cao, Rui; Yan, Pengfei; Guo, Hao; Li, Dandan; Guo, Yuxiang; Yan, Tianyi; Wu, Jinglong; Xiang, Jie; Zhang, Hui

    2017-01-01

    Alzheimer's disease (AD) is a frequently observed, irreversible brain function disorder among elderly individuals. Resting-state functional magnetic resonance imaging (rs-fMRI) has been introduced as an alternative approach to assessing brain functional abnormalities in AD patients. However, alterations in the brain rs-fMRI signal complexities in mild cognitive impairment (MCI) and AD patients remain unclear. Here, we described the novel application of permutation entropy (PE) to investigate the abnormal complexity of rs-fMRI signals in MCI and AD patients. The rs-fMRI signals of 30 normal controls (NCs), 33 early MCI (EMCI), 32 late MCI (LMCI), and 29 AD patients were obtained from the Alzheimer's disease Neuroimaging Initiative (ADNI) database. After preprocessing, whole-brain entropy maps of the four groups were extracted and subjected to Gaussian smoothing. We performed a one-way analysis of variance (ANOVA) on the brain entropy maps of the four groups. The results after adjusting for age and sex differences together revealed that the patients with AD exhibited lower complexity than did the MCI and NC controls. We found five clusters that exhibited significant differences and were distributed primarily in the occipital, frontal, and temporal lobes. The average PE of the five clusters exhibited a decreasing trend from MCI to AD. The AD group exhibited the least complexity. Additionally, the average PE of the five clusters was significantly positively correlated with the Mini-Mental State Examination (MMSE) scores and significantly negatively correlated with Functional Assessment Questionnaire (FAQ) scores and global Clinical Dementia Rating (CDR) scores in the patient groups. Significant correlations were also found between the PE and regional homogeneity (ReHo) in the patient groups. These results indicated that declines in PE might be related to changes in regional functional homogeneity in AD. These findings suggested that complexity analyses using PE in rs

  7. Efficacy of Pseudomonas fluorescens (Pf-CL145A) spray dried powder for controlling zebra mussels adhering to test substrates

    Luoma, James A.; Severson, Todd J.; Weber, Kerry L.; Mayer, Denise A.

    2015-01-01

    Approximately 30 days after exposure, zebra mussels were sorted into live and dead, and enumerated. Mean survival of zebra mussels in control treatments exceeded 95 percent. Mean survival of zebra mussels in the Lake Carlos WWC SDP-treated groups ranged from 0.5 to 2.1 percent and when compared at the same exposure duration, no difference was detected in survival between the 50 and 100 milligrams per liter (mg/L) treatment groups. Similarly, mean survival of zebra mussels in the Shawano Lake WWC SDP-treated groups ranged from 2.0 to 12.6 percent and when compared at the same exposure duration, no difference was detected in survival between the 50- and 100-mg/L treatment groups. Mean survival of zebra mussels in the Lake Carlos BI trial SDP-treated groups did not differ (p = 0.93) and was 18.1 and 18.0 percent in the 50- and 100-mg/L treatment groups, respectively. Mean survival of zebra mussels in the Shawano Lake BI trial SDP-treated groups differed (p < 0.01) and was 2.9 and 0.9 percent in the 50- and 100-mg/L treatment groups, respectively. Survival of zebra mussels assigned to the SDP-treated groups in the Lake Carlos WWC trial (12-hour exposure duration) differed from the survival of zebra mussels assigned to the SDP-treated groups in the Lake Carlos BI trial; however, after modification of the BI application technique, no difference (p = 0.22) was detected between the survival of zebra mussel in the Shawano Lake WWC (12-hour exposure duration) and BI trials.

  8. Occurrence of socransky red complex in pregnant women with and without periodontal disease.

    PubMed

    Lima, Daniela Pereira; Moimaz, Suzely Adas Saliba; Garbin, Cléa Adas Saliba; Sumida, Dóris Hissako; Jardim, Elerson Gaetti; Okamoto, Ana Cláudia

    2015-01-01

    To verify the presence of Socransky Red Complex (Porphyromonas gingivalis, Treponema denticola and Tannerella forsythia) and P. intermedia using polymerase chain reaction (PCR) in periodontally healthy pregnant women and pregnant women with periodontal disease, as well as its relation to arterial blood pressure and capillary glycaemia. This case control study included 86 pregnant women, including 50 pregnant women with healthy periodontium, 27 with gingivitis and 9 with periodontitis. Arterial blood pressure and glycaemia were evaluated and recorded. Clinical specimens from the gingival crevice or periodontal pockets were gathered with sterile absorbent paper cones. DNA extraction was accomplished using the Easy-DNA Kit test and the presence of bacteria was detected by PCR with primers and specific probes for each microorganism. The arterial pressure of all pregnant women was found to be within normal levels and 51% presented with hyperglycaemia, these two variables were not associated with periodontal conditions and/or presence of microorganisms. Socransky Red Complex was not present in pregnant women with healthy periodontium; however, it was present in pregnant women with gingivitis (3.7%) and in a higher percentage of pregnant women with periodontitis (33.3%). Socransky Red Complex was found only in cases of periodontal diseases and is not related to blood pressure and/or high levels of blood glucose.

  9. Destabilized SMC5/6 complex leads to chromosome breakage syndrome with severe lung disease

    PubMed Central

    van der Crabben, Saskia N.; Hennus, Marije P.; McGregor, Grant A.; Ritter, Deborah I.; Nagamani, Sandesh C.S.; Wells, Owen S.; Harakalova, Magdalena; Chinn, Ivan K.; Alt, Aaron; Vondrova, Lucie; Hochstenbach, Ron; van Montfrans, Joris M.; Terheggen-Lagro, Suzanne W.; van Lieshout, Stef; van Roosmalen, Markus J.; Renkens, Ivo; Duran, Karen; Nijman, Isaac J.; Kloosterman, Wigard P.; Hennekam, Eric; van Hasselt, Peter M.; Wheeler, David A.; Palecek, Jan J.; Lehmann, Alan R.; Oliver, Antony W.; Pearl, Laurence H.; Plon, Sharon E.; Murray, Johanne M.

    2016-01-01

    The structural maintenance of chromosomes (SMC) family of proteins supports mitotic proliferation, meiosis, and DNA repair to control genomic stability. Impairments in chromosome maintenance are linked to rare chromosome breakage disorders. Here, we have identified a chromosome breakage syndrome associated with severe lung disease in early childhood. Four children from two unrelated kindreds died of severe pulmonary disease during infancy following viral pneumonia with evidence of combined T and B cell immunodeficiency. Whole exome sequencing revealed biallelic missense mutations in the NSMCE3 (also known as NDNL2) gene, which encodes a subunit of the SMC5/6 complex that is essential for DNA damage response and chromosome segregation. The NSMCE3 mutations disrupted interactions within the SMC5/6 complex, leading to destabilization of the complex. Patient cells showed chromosome rearrangements, micronuclei, sensitivity to replication stress and DNA damage, and defective homologous recombination. This work associates missense mutations in NSMCE3 with an autosomal recessive chromosome breakage syndrome that leads to defective T and B cell function and acute respiratory distress syndrome in early childhood. PMID:27427983

  10. Multiplex method for initial complex testing of antibodies to blood transmitted diseases agents.

    PubMed

    Poltavchenko, Alexander G; Nechitaylo, Oleg V; Filatov, Pavel V; Ersh, Anna V; Gureyev, Vadim N

    2016-10-01

    Initial screening of donors and population at high risk of infection with blood transmitted diseases involves a number of analyses using monospesific diagnostic systems, and therefore is expensive labor- and time-consuming process. The goal of this work is to construct a multiplex test enabling to carry out rapid initial complex testing at a low price. The paper describes a kit making it possible to detect simultaneously antibodies to six agents of the most significant blood transmitted diseases: HIV virus, hepatitis B and C viruses, cytomegalovirus, T. pallidum and T. gondii in blood products. The kit comprises multiplex dot-immunoassay based on plane protein arrays (immune chips) using colloidal gold conjugates and silver development. It provides an opportunity to carry out complex analysis within 70min at room temperature, and there is no need of well-qualified personnel. We compared laboratory findings of the kit with monospecific kits for ELISA produced by two Russian commercial companies. Dot-assay results correlate well with data obtained using commercial kits for ELISA. Furthermore, multiplex analysis is quicker and cheaper in comparison with ELISA and can be carried out in non-laboratory conditions. The kit for multiplex dot-immunoassay of antibodies to blood transmitted agents can significantly simplify initial complex testing. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  11. Destabilized SMC5/6 complex leads to chromosome breakage syndrome with severe lung disease.

    PubMed

    van der Crabben, Saskia N; Hennus, Marije P; McGregor, Grant A; Ritter, Deborah I; Nagamani, Sandesh C S; Wells, Owen S; Harakalova, Magdalena; Chinn, Ivan K; Alt, Aaron; Vondrova, Lucie; Hochstenbach, Ron; van Montfrans, Joris M; Terheggen-Lagro, Suzanne W; van Lieshout, Stef; van Roosmalen, Markus J; Renkens, Ivo; Duran, Karen; Nijman, Isaac J; Kloosterman, Wigard P; Hennekam, Eric; Orange, Jordan S; van Hasselt, Peter M; Wheeler, David A; Palecek, Jan J; Lehmann, Alan R; Oliver, Antony W; Pearl, Laurence H; Plon, Sharon E; Murray, Johanne M; van Haaften, Gijs

    2016-08-01

    The structural maintenance of chromosomes (SMC) family of proteins supports mitotic proliferation, meiosis, and DNA repair to control genomic stability. Impairments in chromosome maintenance are linked to rare chromosome breakage disorders. Here, we have identified a chromosome breakage syndrome associated with severe lung disease in early childhood. Four children from two unrelated kindreds died of severe pulmonary disease during infancy following viral pneumonia with evidence of combined T and B cell immunodeficiency. Whole exome sequencing revealed biallelic missense mutations in the NSMCE3 (also known as NDNL2) gene, which encodes a subunit of the SMC5/6 complex that is essential for DNA damage response and chromosome segregation. The NSMCE3 mutations disrupted interactions within the SMC5/6 complex, leading to destabilization of the complex. Patient cells showed chromosome rearrangements, micronuclei, sensitivity to replication stress and DNA damage, and defective homologous recombination. This work associates missense mutations in NSMCE3 with an autosomal recessive chromosome breakage syndrome that leads to defective T and B cell function and acute respiratory distress syndrome in early childhood.

  12. Semiquantitative Culture Analysis during Therapy for Mycobacterium avium Complex Lung Disease.

    PubMed

    Griffith, David E; Adjemian, Jennifer; Brown-Elliott, Barbara A; Philley, Julie V; Prevots, D Rebecca; Gaston, Christopher; Olivier, Kenneth N; Wallace, Richard J

    2015-09-15

    Microbiologically based criteria such as sputum culture conversion to negative have traditionally been used to define treatment success for mycobacterial diseases. There are, however, limited data regarding whether nontuberculous mycobacterial sputum culture conversion or semiquantitative culture analysis correlates with subjective or nonmicrobiologic objective indices of treatment response. To determine whether a semiquantitative mycobacterial culture scale correlated with clinical disease status and was predictive of long-term sputum mycobacterial culture conversion to negative in a cohort of patients with nodular/bronchiectatic Mycobacterium avium complex lung disease undergoing therapy. One hundred and eighty patients undergoing standard macrolide-based therapy for M. avium complex lung disease were monitored at standard frequent intervals with symptomatic, radiographic, and microbiologic data collected, including semiquantitative mycobacterial culture analysis. Analyses were used to evaluate clinical and microbiologic predictors of long-term sputum conversion to culture negative. After 12 months of therapy, 148 (82%) patients had sputum conversion to culture negative. Baseline semiquantitative sputum culture scores did not differ between patients with sputum conversion and those without. The change in sputum culture semiquantitative score from baseline to Month 3 was highly predictive of subsequent sputum long-term conversion status indicative of treatment success, as was improvement in cough, and especially early radiographic improvement. Early semiquantitative sputum agar plate culture results can be used to predict symptomatic and radiographic improvement as well as long-term sputum culture conversion to negative in this population. We suggest that semiquantitative sputum culture scores can be a useful tool for evaluating new nontuberculous mycobacterial lung disease therapies.

  13. The Allelic Landscape of Human Blood Cell Trait Variation and Links to Common Complex Disease.

    PubMed

    Astle, William J; Elding, Heather; Jiang, Tao; Allen, Dave; Ruklisa, Dace; Mann, Alice L; Mead, Daniel; Bouman, Heleen; Riveros-Mckay, Fernando; Kostadima, Myrto A; Lambourne, John J; Sivapalaratnam, Suthesh; Downes, Kate; Kundu, Kousik; Bomba, Lorenzo; Berentsen, Kim; Bradley, John R; Daugherty, Louise C; Delaneau, Olivier; Freson, Kathleen; Garner, Stephen F; Grassi, Luigi; Guerrero, Jose; Haimel, Matthias; Janssen-Megens, Eva M; Kaan, Anita; Kamat, Mihir; Kim, Bowon; Mandoli, Amit; Marchini, Jonathan; Martens, Joost H A; Meacham, Stuart; Megy, Karyn; O'Connell, Jared; Petersen, Romina; Sharifi, Nilofar; Sheard, Simon M; Staley, James R; Tuna, Salih; van der Ent, Martijn; Walter, Klaudia; Wang, Shuang-Yin; Wheeler, Eleanor; Wilder, Steven P; Iotchkova, Valentina; Moore, Carmel; Sambrook, Jennifer; Stunnenberg, Hendrik G; Di Angelantonio, Emanuele; Kaptoge, Stephen; Kuijpers, Taco W; Carrillo-de-Santa-Pau, Enrique; Juan, David; Rico, Daniel; Valencia, Alfonso; Chen, Lu; Ge, Bing; Vasquez, Louella; Kwan, Tony; Garrido-Martín, Diego; Watt, Stephen; Yang, Ying; Guigo, Roderic; Beck, Stephan; Paul, Dirk S; Pastinen, Tomi; Bujold, David; Bourque, Guillaume; Frontini, Mattia; Danesh, John; Roberts, David J; Ouwehand, Willem H; Butterworth, Adam S; Soranzo, Nicole

    2016-11-17

    Many common variants have been associated with hematological traits, but identification of causal genes and pathways has proven challenging. We performed a genome-wide association analysis in the UK Biobank and INTERVAL studies, testing 29.5 million genetic variants for association with 36 red cell, white cell, and platelet properties in 173,480 European-ancestry participants. This effort yielded hundreds of low frequency (<5%) and rare (<1%) variants with a strong impact on blood cell phenotypes. Our data highlight general properties of the allelic architecture of complex traits, including the proportion of the heritable component of each blood trait explained by the polygenic signal across different genome regulatory domains. Finally, through Mendelian randomization, we provide evidence of shared genetic pathways linking blood cell indices with complex pathologies, including autoimmune diseases, schizophrenia, and coronary heart disease and evidence suggesting previously reported population associations between blood cell indices and cardiovascular disease may be non-causal. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  14. Gene-Lifestyle Interactions in Complex Diseases: Design and Description of the GLACIER and VIKING Studies

    PubMed Central

    Kurbasic, Azra; Poveda, Alaitz; Chen, Yan; Ågren, Åsa; Engberg, Elisabeth; Hu, Frank B.; Johansson, Ingegerd; Barroso, Ines; Brändström, Anders; Hallmans, Göran; Renström, Frida; Franks, Paul W.

    2014-01-01

    Most complex diseases have well-established genetic and non-genetic risk factors. In some instances, these risk factors are likely to interact, whereby their joint effects convey a level of risk that is either significantly more or less than the sum of these risks. Characterizing these gene-environment interactions may help elucidate the biology of complex diseases, as well as to guide strategies for their targeted prevention. In most cases, the detection of gene-environment interactions will require sample sizes in excess of those needed to detect the marginal effects of the genetic and environmental risk factors. Although many consortia have been formed, comprising multiple diverse cohorts to detect gene-environment interactions, few robust examples of such interactions have been discovered. This may be because combining data across studies, usually through meta-analysis of summary data from the contributing cohorts, is often a statistically inefficient approach for the detection of gene-environment interactions. Ideally, single, very large and well-genotyped prospective cohorts, with validated measures of environmental risk factor and disease outcomes should be used to study interactions. The presence of strong founder effects within those cohorts might further strengthen the capacity to detect novel genetic effects and gene-environment interactions. Access to accurate genealogical data would also aid in studying the diploid nature of the human genome, such as genomic imprinting (parent-of-origin effects). Here we describe two studies from northern Sweden (the GLACIER and VIKING studies) that fulfill these characteristics. PMID:25396097

  15. Gene-Lifestyle Interactions in Complex Diseases: Design and Description of the GLACIER and VIKING Studies.

    PubMed

    Kurbasic, Azra; Poveda, Alaitz; Chen, Yan; Agren, Asa; Engberg, Elisabeth; Hu, Frank B; Johansson, Ingegerd; Barroso, Ines; Brändström, Anders; Hallmans, Göran; Renström, Frida; Franks, Paul W

    2014-12-01

    Most complex diseases have well-established genetic and non-genetic risk factors. In some instances, these risk factors are likely to interact, whereby their joint effects convey a level of risk that is either significantly more or less than the sum of these risks. Characterizing these gene-environment interactions may help elucidate the biology of complex diseases, as well as to guide strategies for their targeted prevention. In most cases, the detection of gene-environment interactions will require sample sizes in excess of those needed to detect the marginal effects of the genetic and environmental risk factors. Although many consortia have been formed, comprising multiple diverse cohorts to detect gene-environment interactions, few robust examples of such interactions have been discovered. This may be because combining data across studies, usually through meta-analysis of summary data from the contributing cohorts, is often a statistically inefficient approach for the detection of gene-environment interactions. Ideally, single, very large and well-genotyped prospective cohorts, with validated measures of environmental risk factor and disease outcomes should be used to study interactions. The presence of strong founder effects within those cohorts might further strengthen the capacity to detect novel genetic effects and gene-environment interactions. Access to accurate genealogical data would also aid in studying the diploid nature of the human genome, such as genomic imprinting (parent-of-origin effects). Here we describe two studies from northern Sweden (the GLACIER and VIKING studies) that fulfill these characteristics.

  16. Differential Virulence and Disease Progression following Mycobacterium tuberculosis Complex Infection of the Common Marmoset (Callithrix jacchus)

    PubMed Central

    Via, Laura E.; Weiner, Danielle M.; Schimel, Daniel; Lin, Philana Ling; Dayao, Emmanuel; Tankersley, Sarah L.; Cai, Ying; Coleman, M. Teresa; Tomko, Jaime; Paripati, Praveen; Orandle, Marlene; Kastenmayer, Robin J.; Tartakovsky, Michael; Rosenthal, Alexander; Portevin, Damien; Eum, Seok Yong; Lahouar, Saher; Gagneux, Sebastien; Young, Douglas B.; Flynn, JoAnne L.

    2013-01-01

    Existing small-animal models of tuberculosis (TB) rarely develop cavitary disease, limiting their value for assessing the biology and dynamics of this highly important feature of human disease. To develop a smaller primate model with pathology similar to that seen in humans, we experimentally infected the common marmoset (Callithrix jacchus) with diverse strains of Mycobacterium tuberculosis of various pathogenic potentials. These included recent isolates of the modern Beijing lineage, the Euro-American X lineage, and M. africanum. All three strains produced fulminant disease in this animal with a spectrum of progression rates and clinical sequelae that could be monitored in real time using 2-deoxy-2-[18F]fluoro-d-glucose (FDG) positron emission tomography (PET)/computed tomography (CT). Lesion pathology at sacrifice revealed the entire spectrum of lesions observed in human TB patients. The three strains produced different rates of progression to disease, various extents of extrapulmonary dissemination, and various degrees of cavitation. The majority of live births in this species are twins, and comparison of results from siblings with different infecting strains allowed us to establish that the infection was highly reproducible and that the differential virulence of strains was not simply host variation. Quantitative assessment of disease burden by FDG-PET/CT provided an accurate reflection of the pathology findings at necropsy. These results suggest that the marmoset offers an attractive small-animal model of human disease that recapitulates both the complex pathology and spectrum of disease observed in humans infected with various M. tuberculosis strain clades. PMID:23716617

  17. A novel approach to simulate gene-environment interactions in complex diseases.

    PubMed

    Amato, Roberto; Pinelli, Michele; D'Andrea, Daniel; Miele, Gennaro; Nicodemi, Mario; Raiconi, Giancarlo; Cocozza, Sergio

    2010-01-05

    Complex diseases are multifactorial traits caused by both genetic and environmental factors. They represent the major part of human diseases and include those with largest prevalence and mortality (cancer, heart disease, obesity, etc.). Despite a large amount of information that has been collected about both genetic and environmental risk factors, there are few examples of studies on their interactions in epidemiological literature. One reason can be the incomplete knowledge of the power of statistical methods designed to search for risk factors and their interactions in these data sets. An improvement in this direction would lead to a better understanding and description of gene-environment interactions. To this aim, a possible strategy is to challenge the different statistical methods against data sets where the underlying phenomenon is completely known and fully controllable, for example simulated ones. We present a mathematical approach that models gene-environment interactions. By this method it is possible to generate simulated populations having gene-environment interactions of any form, involving any number of genetic and environmental factors and also allowing non-linear interactions as epistasis. In particular, we implemented a simple version of this model in a Gene-Environment iNteraction Simulator (GENS), a tool designed to simulate case-control data sets where a one gene-one environment interaction influences the disease risk. The main aim has been to allow the input of population characteristics by using standard epidemiological measures and to implement constraints to make the simulator behaviour biologically meaningful. By the multi-logistic model implemented in GENS it is possible to simulate case-control samples of complex disease where gene-environment interactions influence the disease risk. The user has full control of the main characteristics of the simulated population and a Monte Carlo process allows random variability. A knowledge

  18. Development of a molecular diagnostic system to discriminate Dreissena polymorpha (zebra mussel) and Dreissena bugensis (quagga mussel)

    Hoy, M.S.; Kelly, K.; Rodriguez, R.J.

    2010-01-01

    A 3-primer PCR system was developed to discriminate invasive zebra (Dreissena polymorpha) and quagga (Dreissena bugensis) mussel. The system is based on: 1) universal primers that amplifies a region of the nuclear 28s rDNA gene from both species and 2) a species-specific primer complementary to either zebra or quagga mussel. The species-specific primers bind to sequences between the binding sites for the universal primers resulting in the amplification of two products from the target species and one product from the nontarget species. Therefore, nontarget products are positive amplification controls. The 3-primer system accurately discriminated zebra and quagga mussels from seven geographically distinct populations.

  19. Association of red complex, A. actinomycetemcomitans and non-oral bacteria with periodontal diseases.

    PubMed

    da Silva-Boghossian, Carina Maciel; do Souto, Renata Martins; Luiz, Ronir R; Colombo, Ana Paula Vieira

    2011-09-01

    Pathogens related to systemic infections have been detected in the periodontal microbiota. The relationship amongst these pathogens, periodontal bacteria and periodontal clinical status is poorly understood. This study evaluated the association amongst red complex, A. actinomycetemcomitans (A.a) and non-oral pathogenic bacteria in subjects with good periodontal health (PH), gingivitis (G), chronic (CP) and aggressive (AP) periodontitis. Subgingival biofilm samples were obtained from 51 PH, 42 G, 219 CP and 90 AP subjects. The presence and levels of A.a, red complex (Porphyromonas gingivalis, Tannerella forsythia, Treponema denticola), Acinetobacter baumannii, Escherichia coli, Enterococcus faecalis, Pseudomonas aeruginosa, and Staphylococcus aureus were determined by DNA probes and DNA-DNA hybridization technique. CP and AP subjects presented significantly higher prevalence and levels of A.a, red complex and A. baumannii than G and PH individuals (p<0.01), whereas S. aureus was detected in lower frequency and counts in AP as compared to the other groups (p<0.001). The predictor variables age, prevalence of red complex, and the presence of A. baumannii and P. aeruginosa were strongly associated with the frequency of sites with PD and CAL ≥5 mm. Increasing age (OR 1.08), high frequency of red complex (OR 6.10), and the presence of A.a with P. aeruginosa (OR 1.90) were associated with periodontal disease (p<0.001). Subjects harbouring a high prevalence of A.a, A. baumannii, and red complex with P. aeruginosa were more likely to have AP than CP (p<0.001). Putative periodontal pathogens and non-oral bacteria alone or in association were strongly associated with periodontitis. Copyright © 2011 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  20. SPATIALLY AND SPECTRALLY RESOLVED OBSERVATIONS OF A ZEBRA PATTERN IN A SOLAR DECIMETRIC RADIO BURST

    SciT

    Chen Bin; Bastian, T. S.; Gary, D. E.

    2011-07-20

    We present the first interferometric observation of a zebra-pattern radio burst with simultaneous high spectral ({approx}1 MHz) and high time (20 ms) resolution. The Frequency-Agile Solar Radiotelescope Subsystem Testbed (FST) and the Owens Valley Solar Array (OVSA) were used in parallel to observe the X1.5 flare on 2006 December 14. By using OVSA to calibrate the FST, the source position of the zebra pattern can be located on the solar disk. With the help of multi-wavelength observations and a nonlinear force-free field extrapolation, the zebra source is explored in relation to the magnetic field configuration. New constraints are placed onmore » the source size and position as a function of frequency and time. We conclude that the zebra burst is consistent with a double-plasma resonance model in which the radio emission occurs in resonance layers where the upper-hybrid frequency is harmonically related to the electron cyclotron frequency in a coronal magnetic loop.« less

  1. Automatic detection of zebra crossings from mobile LiDAR data

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Riveiro, B.; González-Jorge, H.; Martínez-Sánchez, J.; Díaz-Vilariño, L.; Arias, P.

    2015-07-01

    An algorithm for the automatic detection of zebra crossings from mobile LiDAR data is developed and tested to be applied for road management purposes. The algorithm consists of several subsequent processes starting with road segmentation by performing a curvature analysis for each laser cycle. Then, intensity images are created from the point cloud using rasterization techniques, in order to detect zebra crossing using the Standard Hough Transform and logical constrains. To optimize the results, image processing algorithms are applied to the intensity images from the point cloud. These algorithms include binarization to separate the painting area from the rest of the pavement, median filtering to avoid noisy points, and mathematical morphology to fill the gaps between the pixels in the border of white marks. Once the road marking is detected, its position is calculated. This information is valuable for inventorying purposes of road managers that use Geographic Information Systems. The performance of the algorithm has been evaluated over several mobile LiDAR strips accounting for a total of 30 zebra crossings. That test showed a completeness of 83%. Non-detected marks mainly come from painting deterioration of the zebra crossing or by occlusions in the point cloud produced by other vehicles on the road.

  2. Camdeboo-Mountain Zebra National Park Corridor: Opportunities for conservation and socio-economic development

    Matthew Norval

    2015-01-01

    The Wilderness Foundation, in partnership with South African National Parks has initiated a two year project in the Karoo; The Mountain Zebra-Camdeboo Corridor Project. Through either voluntary Contractual National Park or Protected Environment agreements, the project aims to work with, rather than displace, current conservation-compatible land-use practices such as...

  3. Song decrystallization in adult zebra finches does not require the song nucleus NIf.

    PubMed

    Roy, Arani; Mooney, Richard

    2009-08-01

    In adult male zebra finches, transecting the vocal nerve causes previously stable (i.e., crystallized) song to slowly degrade, presumably because of the resulting distortion in auditory feedback. How and where distorted feedback interacts with song motor networks to induce this process of song decrystallization remains unknown. The song premotor nucleus HVC is a potential site where auditory feedback signals could interact with song motor commands. Although the forebrain nucleus interface of the nidopallium (NIf) appears to be the primary auditory input to HVC, NIf lesions made in adult zebra finches do not trigger song decrystallization. One possibility is that NIf lesions do not interfere with song maintenance, but do compromise the adult zebra finch's ability to express renewed vocal plasticity in response to feedback perturbations. To test this idea, we bilaterally lesioned NIf and then transected the vocal nerve in adult male zebra finches. We found that bilateral NIf lesions did not prevent nerve section-induced song decrystallization. To test the extent to which the NIf lesions disrupted auditory processing in the song system, we made in vivo extracellular recordings in HVC and a downstream anterior forebrain pathway (AFP) in NIf-lesioned birds. We found strong and selective auditory responses to the playback of the birds' own song persisted in HVC and the AFP following NIf lesions. These findings suggest that auditory inputs to the song system other than NIf, such as the caudal mesopallium, could act as a source of auditory feedback signals to the song motor network.

  4. Zebra Mussel Antifouling Activity of the Marine Natural Product Aaptamine and Analogs

    PubMed Central

    Diers, Jeffrey A.; Bowling, John J.; Duke, Stephen O.; Wahyuono, Subagus; Kelly, Michelle; Hamann, Mark T.

    2016-01-01

    Several aaptamine derivatives were selected as potential zebra mussel (Dreissena polymorpha) antifoulants because of the noteworthy absence of fouling observed on Aaptos sponges. Sponges of the genus Aaptos collected in Manado, Indonesia consistently produce aaptamine-type alkaloids. To date, aaptamine and its derivatives have not been carefully evaluated for their antifoulant properties. Structure–activity relationship studies were conducted using several aaptamine derivatives in a zebra mussel antifouling assay. From these data, three analogs have shown significant antifouling activity against zebra mussel attachment. Aaptamine, isoaaptamine, and the demethylated aaptamine compounds used in the zebra mussel assay produced EC50 values of 24.2, 11.6, and 18.6 μM, respectively. In addition, neither aaptamine nor isoaaptamine produced a phytotoxic response (as high as 300 μM) toward a nontarget organism, Lemna pausicostata, in a 7-day exposure. The use of these aaptamine derivatives from Aaptos sp. as potential environmentally benign antifouling alternatives to metal-based paints and preservatives is significant, not only as a possible control of fouling organisms, but also to highlight the ecological importance of these and similar biochemical defenses. PMID:16718618

  5. Zebra Crossing: Walking in Two Continents Sharing and Celebrating Difference through Music

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Joseph, Dawn

    2011-01-01

    I use the metaphor "zebra crossing" in my reflective narrative to describe my plight and struggle as a non-white person growing up and working in Johannesburg, South Africa, during the apartheid era. This article considers and compares the notions of culture, diversity and identity as I now work in a tertiary institution in Melbourne,…

  6. Dissection and Downstream Analysis of Zebra Finch Embryos at Early Stages of Development

    PubMed Central

    Murray, Jessica R.; Stanciauskas, Monika E.; Aralere, Tejas S.; Saha, Margaret S.

    2014-01-01

    The zebra finch (Taeniopygiaguttata) has become an increasingly important model organism in many areas of research including toxicology1,2, behavior3, and memory and learning4,5,6. As the only songbird with a sequenced genome, the zebra finch has great potential for use in developmental studies; however, the early stages of zebra finch development have not been well studied. Lack of research in zebra finch development can be attributed to the difficulty of dissecting the small egg and embryo. The following dissection method minimizes embryonic tissue damage, which allows for investigation of morphology and gene expression at all stages of embryonic development. This permits both bright field and fluorescence quality imaging of embryos, use in molecular procedures such as in situ hybridization (ISH), cell proliferation assays, and RNA extraction for quantitative assays such as quantitative real-time PCR (qtRT-PCR). This technique allows investigators to study early stages of development that were previously difficult to access. PMID:24999108

  7. Evaluation of several chemical disinfectants for removing zebra mussels from unionid mussels

    Waller, D.L.; Fisher, S.W.

    1998-01-01

    We evaluated the safety and effectiveness of chemical treatments for killing veliger and juvenile stages of the zebra mussel Dreissena polymorpha attached to unionid mussels. Static toxicity tests were conducted on eight unionid mussel species with common aquaculture chemicals (benzalkonium chloride, formalin, hydrogen peroxide, calcium chloride, potassium chloride, and sodium chloride). The concentration and duration of each chemical treatment tested had previously been found to kill zebra mussel veligers and juveniles. Several species (e.g., Elliptio dilatata, Lampsilis cardium, and Lasmigona complanata) incurred less than 10% mortality in chloride salt treatments, while in other species (e.g., Obliquaria reflexa and Leptodea fragilis) mortality varied greatly among treatment regimes. Treatments with benzalkonium chloride, formalin, and hydrogen peroxide were less than 90% effective on juvenile stages of zebra mussels and, therefore, were ruled out after preliminary trials. Limited application of specific chemical treatments may be feasible for more tolerant species; however, effective disinfection of unionid shells will require the use of chemical treatment followed by a quarantine period to completely remove zebra mussel larvae and juveniles.

  8. Equid herpesvirus 9 (EHV-9) isolates from zebras in Ontario, Canada, 1989 to 2007.

    PubMed

    Rebelo, Ana Rita; Carman, Susy; Shapiro, Jan; van Dreumel, Tony; Hazlett, Murray; Nagy, Éva

    2015-04-01

    The objective of this study was to identify and partially characterize 3 equid herpesviruses that were isolated postmortem from zebras in Ontario, Canada in 1989, 2002, and 2007. These 3 virus isolates were characterized by plaque morphology, restriction fragment length polymorphism (RFLP) of their genomic deoxyribonucleic acid (DNA), real-time polymerase chain reaction (PCR) assay, and sequence analyses of the full length of the glycoprotein G (gG) gene (ORF70) and a portion of the DNA polymerase gene (ORF30). The isolates were also compared to 3 reference strains of equid herpesvirus 1 (EHV-1). Using rabbit kidney cells, the plaques for the isolates from the zebras were found to be much larger in size than the EHV-1 reference strains. The RFLP patterns of the zebra viruses differed among each other and from those of the EHV-1 reference strains. Real-time PCR and sequence analysis of a portion of the DNA polymerase gene determined that the herpesvirus isolates from the zebras contained a G at nucleotide 2254 and a corresponding N at amino acid position 752, which suggested that they could be neuropathogenic EHV-1 strains. However, subsequent phylogenetic analysis of the gG gene suggested that they were EHV-9 and not EHV-1.

  9. Assessing the potential for fish predation to impact zebra mussels (Dreissena polymorpha): Insight from bioenergetics models

    Eggleton, M.A.; Miranda, L.E.; Kirk, J.P.

    2004-01-01

    Rates of annual food consumption and biomass were modeled for several fish species across representative rivers and lakes in eastern North America. Results were combined to assess the relative potential of fish predation to impact zebra mussels (Dreissena polymorpha). Predicted annual food consumption by fishes in southern waters was over 100% greater than that in northern systems because of warmer annual water temperatures and presumed increases in metabolic demand. Although generally increasing with latitude, biomasses of several key zebra mussel fish predators did not change significantly across latitudes. Biomasses of some less abundant fish predators did increase significantly with latitude, but increases were not of the magnitude to offset predicted decreases in food consumption. Our results generally support the premise that fishes in rivers and lakes of the southern United States (U.S.) have inherently greater potential to impact zebra mussels by predation. Our simulations may provide a partial explanation of why zebra mussel invasions have not been as rapid and widespread in southern U.S. waters compared to the Great Lakes region. ?? Blackwell Munksgaard, 2004.

  10. Transcription-dependent induction of G1 phase during the zebra fish midblastula transition.

    PubMed

    Zamir, E; Kam, Z; Yarden, A

    1997-02-01

    The early development of the zebra fish (Danio rerio) embryo is characterized by a series of rapid and synchronous cell cycles with no detectable transcription. This period is followed by the midblastula transition (MBT), during which the cell cycle gradually lengthens, cell synchrony is lost, and zygotic transcription is initially detected. In this work, we examined the changes in the pattern of the cell cycle during MBT in zebra fish and whether these changes are dependent on the initiation of zygotic transcription. To characterize the pattern of the early zebra fish cell cycles, the embryonic DNA content was determined by flow cytometric analysis. We found that G1 phase is below detection levels during the first 10 cleavages and can be initially detected at the onset of MBT. Inhibition of zygotic transcription, by microinjection of actinomycin D, abolished the appearance of G1 phase at MBT. Premature activation of zygotic transcription, by microinjection of nonspecific DNA, induced G1 phase before the onset of MBT, while coinjection of actinomycin D and nonspecific DNA abolished this early appearance of G1 phase. We therefore suggest that during the early development of the zebra fish embryo, G1 phase appears at the onset of MBT and that the activation of transcription at MBT is essential and sufficient for the G1-phase induction.

  11. ZENK expression following conspecific and heterospecific playback in the zebra finch auditory forebrain.

    PubMed

    Scully, Erin N; Hahn, Allison H; Campbell, Kimberley A; McMillan, Neil; Congdon, Jenna V; Sturdy, Christopher B

    2017-07-28

    Zebra finches (Taeniopygia guttata) are sexually dimorphic songbirds, not only in appearance but also in vocal production: while males produce both calls and songs, females only produce calls. This dimorphism provides a means to contrast the auditory perception of vocalizations produced by songbird species of varying degrees of relatedness in a dimorphic species to that of a monomorphic species, species in which both males and females produce calls and songs (e.g., black-capped chickadees, Poecile atricapillus). In the current study, we examined neuronal expression after playback of acoustically similar hetero- and conspecific calls produced by species of differing phylogenetic relatedness to our subject species, zebra finch. We measured the immediate early gene (IEG) ZENK in two auditory areas of the forebrain (caudomedial mesopallium, CMM, and caudomedial nidopallium, NCM). We found no significant differences in ZENK expression in either male or female zebra finches regardless of playback condition. We also discuss comparisons between our results and the results of a previous study conducted by Avey et al. [1] on black-capped chickadees that used similar stimulus types. These results are consistent with the previous study which also found no significant differences in expression following playback of calls produced by various heterospecific species and conspecifics [1]. Our results suggest that, similar to black-capped chickadees, IEG expression in zebra finch CMM and NCM is tied to the acoustic similarity of vocalizations and not the phylogenetic relatedness of the species producing the vocalizations. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  12. Nutrient Recycling Impacts by Zebra Mussels in Harper’s Ferry Slough, Upper Mississippi River

    DTIC Science & Technology

    2000-12-01

    ing pro duc tiv ity in the slough (also see Caraco et al. (1997)). In Harper’s Ferry Slough and other aquatic sys tems, the mag ni tude of ze bra mus...the Upper Mississippi River with zebra mussels (Dreissena polymorpha),” Environ. Sci. Technol. 33, 4385-4390. ERDC WQTN-PD-07 December 2000 11 Caraco , N

  13. Song Decrystallization in Adult Zebra Finches Does Not Require the Song Nucleus NIf

    PubMed Central

    Roy, Arani; Mooney, Richard

    2009-01-01

    In adult male zebra finches, transecting the vocal nerve causes previously stable (i.e., crystallized) song to slowly degrade, presumably because of the resulting distortion in auditory feedback. How and where distorted feedback interacts with song motor networks to induce this process of song decrystallization remains unknown. The song premotor nucleus HVC is a potential site where auditory feedback signals could interact with song motor commands. Although the forebrain nucleus interface of the nidopallium (NIf) appears to be the primary auditory input to HVC, NIf lesions made in adult zebra finches do not trigger song decrystallization. One possibility is that NIf lesions do not interfere with song maintenance, but do compromise the adult zebra finch's ability to express renewed vocal plasticity in response to feedback perturbations. To test this idea, we bilaterally lesioned NIf and then transected the vocal nerve in adult male zebra finches. We found that bilateral NIf lesions did not prevent nerve section–induced song decrystallization. To test the extent to which the NIf lesions disrupted auditory processing in the song system, we made in vivo extracellular recordings in HVC and a downstream anterior forebrain pathway (AFP) in NIf-lesioned birds. We found strong and selective auditory responses to the playback of the birds' own song persisted in HVC and the AFP following NIf lesions. These findings suggest that auditory inputs to the song system other than NIf, such as the caudal mesopallium, could act as a source of auditory feedback signals to the song motor network. PMID:19515953

  14. Factors Influencing Adaptation and Performance at Physical Exercise in Complex Congenital Heart Diseases after Surgical Repair

    PubMed Central

    Bassareo, P. P.; Saba, L.; Solla, P.; Barbanti, C.; Marras, A. R.; Mercuro, G.

    2014-01-01

    In the last thirty years, steady progress in the diagnostic tools and care of subjects affected by congenital heart diseases (CHD) has resulted in a significant increase in their survival to adulthood, even for those affected by complex CHD. Based on these premises, a number of teenagers and adults affected by corrected (surgically or through interventional techniques) CHD ask to be allowed to undertake sporting activities, both at a recreational and competitive level. The purpose of this review is to examine the mechanisms influencing the adaption at physical exercise of patients suffering from complex CHD. The conclusion is that even if there are some modest risks with exercise, they should be seen in perspective, and the life-long benefits of regular exercise on general health, mood, and well-being should be emphasized. PMID:24822218

  15. [Current Perspective on Voltage-gated Potassium Channel Complex Antibody Associated Diseases].

    PubMed

    Watanabe, Osamu

    2018-04-01

    Voltage-gated potassium channel (VGKC) complex auto-antibodies were initially identified in Isaacs' syndrome (IS), which is characterized by muscle cramps and neuromyotonia. These antibodies were subsequently identified in patients with Morvan's syndrome (MoS), which includes IS in conjunction with psychosis, insomnia, and dysautonomia. The antibodies have also been detected in a patient with limbic encephalopathy (LE) presenting with prominent amnesia and frequent seizures. Typical cases of LE have adult-onset, with frequent, brief dystonic seizures that predominantly affect the arms and ipsilateral face, and has recently been termed faciobrachial dystonic seizures. Autoantibodies against the extracellular domains of VGKC complex proteins, leucine-rich glioma-inactivated 1 (LGI1), and contactin-associated protein-2 (Caspr2), occur in patients with IS, MoS, and LE. However, routine testing has detected VGKC complex antibodies without LGI1 or Caspr2 reactivities (double-negative) in patients with other diseases, such as Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease and amyotrophic lateral sclerosis. Furthermore, double-negative VGKC complex antibodies are often directed against cytosolic epitopes of Kv1 subunits. Therefore, these antibodies should no longer be classified as neuronal-surface antibodies and lacking pathogenic potential. Novel information has been generated regarding autoantibody disruption of the physiological functions of target proteins. LGI1 antibodies neutralize the interaction between LGI1 and ADAM22, thereby reducing the synaptic AMPA receptors. It may be that the main action is on inhibitory neurons, explaining why the loss of AMPA receptors causes amnesia, neuronal excitability and seizures.

  16. Rare association of anophthalmia, complex congenital heart disease and pulmonary hypertension: case report.

    PubMed

    Ríos-Méndez, Raúl Enrique; Lozano Chinga, Michell Marola

    2016-10-07

    Clinical congenital anophthalmia is described as the uni- or bilateral absence of the eyeball that might occur in isolation or as part of a syndrome. It has a very low prevalence and its etiology is heterogeneous. Complex congenital cardiac malformations are also rare. The association of congenital anophthalmia and congenital heart disease is rarer still, and the etiology of those associations is not well understood yet. We report the case of a patient who had the very rare association of bilateral anophthalmia, multiple cardiac malformations and severe pulmonary hypertension.

  17. Multidimensional approach for the proper management of a complex chronic patient with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease.

    PubMed

    Rogliani, Paola; Brusasco, Vito; Fabbri, Leonardo; Ungar, Andrea; Muscianisi, Elisa; Barisone, Ilaria; Corsini, Alberto; De Angelis, Giuseppe

    2018-02-01

    Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) is frequently associated with comorbidities occurring either independently or as consequences of COPD. Areas covered: This review examines the interactions between the pathophysiology of COPD and the most frequent comorbidities, and highlights the need for multidimensional clinical strategies to manage COPD patients with comorbidities. Expert commentary: Most COPD patients need to be approached in a complex and multifactorial scenario. The diagnosis of COPD is necessarily based on the presence of chronic respiratory symptoms and poorly reversible airflow obstruction, but exacerbations and comorbidities need to be considered in the evaluation of disease severity and prognosis in individual patients. More importantly, defining the precise relationship between COPD and comorbidities for each patient is the basis for a correct therapeutic approach.

  18. [Comparative estimation of laser devices in complex treatment of oral cavity mucous membrane diseases].

    PubMed

    Tatishvili, N G; Iverieli, M B; Abashidze, N O; Gogishvili, Kh V

    2009-05-01

    The aim of the study was to compare laser devices "Optodan" and portative laser "Baure" in complex treatment of oral cavity mucous membrane diseases. We studied 90 patients: 54 female (60,0+/-0,77%) and 36 (30,0+/-0,7%) men from 18 to 45 years old. All patients had different forms of oral mucosal diseases: Stomatitis aphtosa chronica recidiva had 36 patients (28,9+/-0,9%); Erythema exudativum multiforme - 10 patients (6,7+/-1,5%), Candidosis angulitis - 26 patients (17,8+/-1,46%), Lichen ruber planus ulceroza - 4 patients (4,44+/-1,03%), Trauma mechanicum acutium - 12 patients (11,06+/-2,8%), Stomatitis herpetica - 28 patients (31,1+/-1,48%). All the patients were practically healthy and had no contraindications for physiotherapy. Before treatment to all patients had been recommended means of individual hygiene and several recommendations. The patients were divided into two groups. Every group consisted of 45 patients. 13 patients with Stomatitis aphtosa chronica recidiva, 14 - Stomatitis herpetica, 3 - Erythema exudativum multiforme, 8 - Candidosis angulitis, 2 - Lichen ruber planus ulceroza, 5 - Trauma mechanicum acutium. All the patients underwent symptomatic treatment according to the form and gravity of disease. Patients in a first group in addition had laserotherapy with a laser device "Optodan". Patients in a second group underwent laserotherapy with a portative device (Baurer). The positive results were achieved in both groups, though the first group patients mentioned considerable reduce of pain right after procedures. Our research proved the high effectiveness of laserotherapy in complex treatment of oral cavity mucous membrane diseases. Treatment with device "Optodan" is the most preferable.

  19. Detection of susceptibility genes as modifiers due to subgroup differences in complex disease.

    PubMed

    Bergen, Sarah E; Maher, Brion S; Fanous, Ayman H; Kendler, Kenneth S

    2010-08-01

    Complex diseases invariably involve multiple genes and often exhibit variable symptom profiles. The extent to which disease symptoms, course, and severity differ between affected individuals may result from underlying genetic heterogeneity. Genes with modifier effects may or may not also influence disease susceptibility. In this study, we have simulated data in which a subset of cases differ by some effect size (ES) on a quantitative trait and are also enriched for a risk allele. Power to detect this 'pseudo-modifier' gene in case-only and case-control designs was explored blind to case substructure. Simulations involved 1000 iterations and calculations for 80% power at P<0.01 while varying the risk allele frequency (RAF), sample size (SS), ES, odds ratio (OR), and proportions of the case subgroups. With realistic values for the RAF (0.20), SS (3000) and ES (1), an OR of 1.7 is necessary to detect a pseudo-modifier gene. Unequal numbers of subjects in the case groups result in little decrement in power until the group enriched for the risk allele is <30% or >70% of the total case population. In practice, greater numbers of subjects and selection of a quantitative trait with a large range will provide researchers with greater power to detect a pseudo-modifier gene. However, even under ideal conditions, studies involving alleles with low frequencies or low ORs are usually underpowered for detection of a modifier or susceptibility gene. This may explain some of the inconsistent association results for many candidate gene studies of complex diseases.

  20. A novel spatially-explicit condition for the onset of waterborne diseases in complex environments

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mari, L.; Gatto, M.; Bertuzzo, E.; Casagrandi, R.; Righetto, L.; Rodriguez-Iturbe, I.; Rinaldo, A.

    2012-12-01

    In spatial models of waterborne infections the condition that all the local reproduction numbers be larger than one is neither necessary nor sufficient for outbreaks to occur. Here, to properly determine epidemic onset conditions, we examine the transition from stable to unstable of the disease-free equilibrium of a system of nonlinear differential equations characterizing the evolution of susceptible and infected individuals within their respective settlements, and pathogen concentration in their accessible environment. Two different network connectivity layers are assumed to link human settlements: hydrologic pathways serve as ecological corridors for pathogens, while human mobility acts as disease vehicle through susceptibles contracting the disease and asymptomatic infectives shedding bacteria at their temporary destinations. We show that an epidemic outbreak can be triggered if the dominant eigenvalue of a generalized reproduction matrix G0, suitably accounting for spatial distribution of human settlements, hydrological pathways for pathogen dispersal and pathogen redistribution mechanisms due to human mobility, is larger than unity. Matrix G0 and its dominant eigenvalue thus replace the usual reproduction number whenever spatial effects on disease propagation cannot be ignored. Conversely, our novel criterion decays into the standard onset condition based on local reproduction numbers in nonspatial settings. By analyzing realistic test cases we show that within a connected network system the disease can start even if all the local reproduction numbers are smaller than unity, or might not start even if all the local reproduction numbers are larger than unity. We also show that onset geography in complex environments is linked to the dominant eigenvector of matrix G0. Applications to cholera outbreaks in developing countries demonstrate that our approach can be successfully used for disease prediction and emergency management.

  1. PRKAR1A mutation causing pituitary-dependent Cushing disease in a patient with Carney complex.

    PubMed

    Kiefer, Florian W; Winhofer, Yvonne; Iacovazzo, Donato; Korbonits, Márta; Wolfsberger, Stefan; Knosp, Engelbert; Trautinger, Franz; Höftberger, Romana; Krebs, Michael; Luger, Anton; Gessl, Alois

    2017-08-01

    Carney complex (CNC) is an autosomal dominant condition caused, in most cases, by an inactivating mutation of the PRKAR1A gene, which encodes for the type 1 alpha regulatory subunit of protein kinase A. CNC is characterized by the occurrence of endocrine overactivity, myxomas and typical skin manifestations. Cushing syndrome due to primary pigmented nodular adrenocortical disease (PPNAD) is the most frequent endocrine disease observed in CNC. Here, we describe the first case of a patient with CNC and adrenocorticotropic hormone (ACTH)-dependent Cushing disease due to a pituitary corticotroph adenoma. Loss-of-heterozygosity analysis of the pituitary tumour revealed loss of the wild-type copy of PRKAR1A , suggesting a role of this gene in the pituitary adenoma development. PRKAR1A loss-of-function mutations can rarely lead to ACTH-secreting pituitary adenomas in CNC patients. Pituitary-dependent disease should be considered in the differential diagnosis of Cushing syndrome in CNC patients. © 2017 European Society of Endocrinology.

  2. Mycobacterium avium complex--the role of potable water in disease transmission.

    PubMed

    Whiley, H; Keegan, A; Giglio, S; Bentham, R

    2012-08-01

    Mycobacterium avium complex (MAC) is a group of opportunistic pathogens of major public health concern. It is responsible for a wide spectrum of disease dependent on subspecies, route of infection and patients pre-existing conditions. Presently, there is limited research on the incidence of MAC infection that considers both pulmonary and other clinical manifestations. MAC has been isolated from various terrestrial and aquatic environments including natural waters, engineered water systems and soils. Identifying the specific environmental sources responsible for human infection is essential in minimizing disease prevalence. This paper reviews current literature and case studies regarding the wide spectrum of disease caused by MAC and the role of potable water in disease transmission. Potable water was recognized as a putative pathway for MAC infection. Contaminated potable water sources associated with human infection included warm water distribution systems, showers, faucets, household drinking water, swimming pools and hot tub spas. MAC can maintain long-term contamination of potable water sources through its high resistance to disinfectants, association with biofilms and intracellular parasitism of free-living protozoa. Further research is required to investigate the efficiency of water treatment processes against MAC and into construction and maintenance of warm water distribution systems and the role they play in MAC proliferation. No claim to Australian Government works Journal of Applied Microbiology © 2012 The Society for Applied Microbiology.

  3. COMPLEXITY AND HETEROGENEITY: WHAT DRIVES THE EVER-CHANGING BRAIN IN HUNTINGTONS DISEASE?

    PubMed Central

    Rosas, H. Diana; Salat, David H; Lee, Stephanie Y; Zaleta, Alexandra K; Hevelone, Nathanael; Hersch, Steven M.

    2008-01-01

    Significant advances are being made in our understanding of basic pathophyiological and biochemical mechanisms that cause HuntingtonÕs disease (HD). There is increasing reason to believe that pathologic alterations occur in the brain for years before symptoms manifest. The “classic” hallmark of neuropathology in HD is selective neurodegeneration in which vulnerable populations of neurons degenerate while less vulnerable populations are spared. While, the earliest and most striking neuropathologic changes have been found in the neostriatum, neuronal loss has been identified in many other regions of the brain. We report topologically selective, early, and progressive changes in the cortex, striatum, extra-striatal brain structures and white matter throughout the spectrum of disease. Our growing understanding of HD underscores the reality that points to the complexity of HD. A single, well-defined genetic mutation causes a cascade of events whose final result is an aggregate insult of the homeostatic process. We explore possible explanations for the selective vulnerability of the brain in HD. The ultimate goal in HD is to develop disease-modifying therapies that will prevent the onset of clinical symptoms in those individuals who are at risk and slow the progression of symptoms in those individuals already affected with symptoms. Understanding changes in brain morphometry and their relationship to clinical symptoms may provide important new and important insights into basic pathophysiological mechanisms at play in the disease. PMID:19076442

  4. Incorporating networks in a probabilistic graphical model to find drivers for complex human diseases.

    PubMed

    Mezlini, Aziz M; Goldenberg, Anna

    2017-10-01

    Discovering genetic mechanisms driving complex diseases is a hard problem. Existing methods often lack power to identify the set of responsible genes. Protein-protein interaction networks have been shown to boost power when detecting gene-disease associations. We introduce a Bayesian framework, Conflux, to find disease associated genes from exome sequencing data using networks as a prior. There are two main advantages to using networks within a probabilistic graphical model. First, networks are noisy and incomplete, a substantial impediment to gene discovery. Incorporating networks into the structure of a probabilistic models for gene inference has less impact on the solution than relying on the noisy network structure directly. Second, using a Bayesian framework we can keep track of the uncertainty of each gene being associated with the phenotype rather than returning a fixed list of genes. We first show that using networks clearly improves gene detection compared to individual gene testing. We then show consistently improved performance of Conflux compared to the state-of-the-art diffusion network-based method Hotnet2 and a variety of other network and variant aggregation methods, using randomly generated and literature-reported gene sets. We test Hotnet2 and Conflux on several network configurations to reveal biases and patterns of false positives and false negatives in each case. Our experiments show that our novel Bayesian framework Conflux incorporates many of the advantages of the current state-of-the-art methods, while offering more flexibility and improved power in many gene-disease association scenarios.

  5. Advanced Parkinson's or "complex phase" Parkinson's disease? Re-evaluation is needed.

    PubMed

    Titova, Nataliya; Martinez-Martin, Pablo; Katunina, Elena; Chaudhuri, K Ray

    2017-12-01

    Holistic management of Parkinson's disease, now recognised as a combined motor and nonmotor disorder, remains a key unmet need. Such management needs relatively accurate definition of the various stages of Parkinson's from early untreated to late palliative as each stage calls for personalised therapies. Management also needs to have a robust knowledge of the progression pattern and clinical heterogeneity of the presentation of Parkinson's which may manifest in a motor dominant or nonmotor dominant manner. The "advanced" stages of Parkinson's disease qualify for advanced treatments such as with continuous infusion or stereotactic surgery yet the concept of "advanced Parkinson's disease" (APD) remains controversial in spite of growing knowledge of the natural history of the motor syndrome of PD. Advanced PD is currently largely defined on the basis of consensus opinion and thus with several caveats. Nonmotor aspects of PD may also reflect advancing course of the disorder, so far not reflected in usual scale based assessments which are largely focussed on motor symptoms. In this paper, we discuss the problems with current definitions of "advanced" PD and also propose the term "complex phase" Parkinson's disease as an alternative which takes into account a multimodal symptoms and biomarker based approach in addition to patient preference.

  6. The complexities of malaria disease manifestations with a focus on asymptomatic malaria

    PubMed Central

    2012-01-01

    Malaria is a serious parasitic disease in the developing world, causing high morbidity and mortality. The pathogenesis of malaria is complex, and the clinical presentation of disease ranges from severe and complicated, to mild and uncomplicated, to asymptomatic malaria. Despite a wealth of studies on the clinical severity of disease, asymptomatic malaria infections are still poorly understood. Asymptomatic malaria remains a challenge for malaria control programs as it significantly influences transmission dynamics. A thorough understanding of the interaction between hosts and parasites in the development of different clinical outcomes is required. In this review, the problems and obstacles to the study and control of asymptomatic malaria are discussed. The human and parasite factors associated with differential clinical outcomes are described and the management and treatment strategies for the control of the disease are outlined. Further, the crucial gaps in the knowledge of asymptomatic malaria that should be the focus of future research towards development of more effective malaria control strategies are highlighted. PMID:22289302

  7. Selective auditory grouping by zebra finches: testing the iambic-trochaic law.

    PubMed

    Spierings, Michelle; Hubert, Jeroen; Ten Cate, Carel

    2017-07-01

    Humans have a strong tendency to spontaneously group visual or auditory stimuli together in larger patterns. One of these perceptual grouping biases is formulated as the iambic/trochaic law, where humans group successive tones alternating in pitch and intensity as trochees (high-low and loud-soft) and alternating in duration as iambs (short-long). The grouping of alternations in pitch and intensity into trochees is a human universal and is also present in one non-human animal species, rats. The perceptual grouping of sounds alternating in duration seems to be affected by native language in humans and has so far not been found among animals. In the current study, we explore to which extent these perceptual biases are present in a songbird, the zebra finch. Zebra finches were trained to discriminate between short strings of pure tones organized as iambs and as trochees. One group received tones that alternated in pitch, a second group heard tones alternating in duration, and for a third group, tones alternated in intensity. Those zebra finches that showed sustained correct discrimination were next tested with longer, ambiguous strings of alternating sounds. The zebra finches in the pitch condition categorized ambiguous strings of alternating tones as trochees, similar to humans. However, most of the zebra finches in the duration and intensity condition did not learn to discriminate between training stimuli organized as iambs and trochees. This study shows that the perceptual bias to group tones alternating in pitch as trochees is not specific to humans and rats, but may be more widespread among animals.

  8. Zebra Finch Song Phonology and Syntactical Structure across Populations and Continents-A Computational Comparison.

    PubMed

    Lachlan, Robert F; van Heijningen, Caroline A A; Ter Haar, Sita M; Ten Cate, Carel

    2016-01-01

    Learned bird songs are often characterized by a high degree of variation between individuals and sometimes between populations, while at the same time maintaining species specificity. The evolution of such songs depends on the balance between plasticity and constraints. Captive populations provide an opportunity to examine signal variation and differentiation in detail, so we analyzed adult male zebra finch (Taeniopygia guttata) songs recorded from 13 populations across the world, including one sample of songs from wild-caught males in their native Australia. Cluster analysis suggested some, albeit limited, evidence that zebra finch song units belonged to universal, species-wide categories, linked to restrictions in vocal production and non-song parts of the vocal repertoire. Across populations, songs also showed some syntactical structure, although any song unit could be placed anywhere within the song. On the other hand, there was a statistically significant differentiation between populations, but the effect size was very small, and its communicative significance dubious. Our results suggest that variation in zebra finch songs within a population is largely determined by species-wide constraints rather than population-specific features. Although captive zebra finch populations have been sufficiently isolated to allow them to genetically diverge, there does not appear to have been any divergence in the genetically determined constraints that underlie song learning. Perhaps more surprising is the lack of locally diverged cultural traditions. Zebra finches serve as an example of a system where frequent learning errors may rapidly create within-population diversity, within broad phonological and syntactical constraints, and prevent the formation of long-term cultural traditions that allow populations to diverge.

  9. The Value of Extended Pedigrees for Next-Generation Analysis of Complex Disease in the Rhesus Macaque

    PubMed Central

    Vinson, Amanda; Prongay, Kamm; Ferguson, Betsy

    2013-01-01

    Complex diseases (e.g., cardiovascular disease and type 2 diabetes, among many others) pose the biggest threat to human health worldwide and are among the most challenging to investigate. Susceptibility to complex disease may be caused by multiple genetic variants (GVs) and their interaction, by environmental factors, and by interaction between GVs and environment, and large study cohorts with substantial analytical power are typically required to elucidate these individual contributions. Here, we discuss the advantages of both power and feasibility afforded by the use of extended pedigrees of rhesus macaques (Macaca mulatta) for genetic studies of complex human disease based on next-generation sequence data. We present these advantages in the context of previous research conducted in rhesus macaques for several representative complex diseases. We also describe a single, multigeneration pedigree of Indian-origin rhesus macaques and a sample biobank we have developed for genetic analysis of complex disease, including power of this pedigree to detect causal GVs using either genetic linkage or association methods in a variance decomposition approach. Finally, we summarize findings of significant heritability for a number of quantitative traits that demonstrate that genetic contributions to risk factors for complex disease can be detected and measured in this pedigree. We conclude that the development and application of an extended pedigree to analysis of complex disease traits in the rhesus macaque have shown promising early success and that genome-wide genetic and higher order -omics studies in this pedigree are likely to yield useful insights into the architecture of complex human disease. PMID:24174435

  10. Modelling fast spreading patterns of airborne infectious diseases using complex networks

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Brenner, Frank; Marwan, Norbert; Hoffmann, Peter

    2017-04-01

    The pandemics of SARS (2002/2003) and H1N1 (2009) have impressively shown the potential of epidemic outbreaks of infectious diseases in a world that is strongly connected. Global air travelling established an easy and fast opportunity for pathogens to migrate globally in only a few days. This made epidemiological prediction harder. By understanding this complex development and its link to climate change we can suggest actions to control a part of global human health affairs. In this study we combine the following data components to simulate the outbreak of an airborne infectious disease that is directly transmitted from human to human: em{Global Air Traffic Network (from openflights.org) with information on airports, airport location, direct flight connection, airplane type} em{Global population dataset (from SEDAC, NASA)} em{Susceptible-Infected-Recovered (SIR) compartmental model to simulate disease spreading in the vicinity of airports. A modified Susceptible-Exposed-Infected-Recovered (SEIR) model to analyze the impact of the incubation period.} em{WATCH-Forcing-Data-ERA-Interim (WFDEI) climate data: temperature, specific humidity, surface air pressure, and water vapor pressure} These elements are implemented into a complex network. Nodes inside the network represent airports. Each single node is equipped with its own SIR/SEIR compartmental model with node specific attributes. Edges between those nodes represent direct flight connections that allow infected individuals to move between linked nodes. Therefore the interaction of the set of unique SIR models creates the model dynamics we will analyze. To better figure out the influence on climate change on disease spreading patterns, we focus on Influenza-like-Illnesses (ILI). The transmission rate of ILI has a dependency on climate parameters like humidity and temperature. Even small changes of environmental variables can trigger significant differences in the global outbreak behavior. Apart from the direct

  11. Characterization of complexity in the electroencephalograph activity of Alzheimer's disease based on fuzzy entropy.

    PubMed

    Cao, Yuzhen; Cai, Lihui; Wang, Jiang; Wang, Ruofan; Yu, Haitao; Cao, Yibin; Liu, Jing

    2015-08-01

    In this paper, experimental neurophysiologic recording and statistical analysis are combined to investigate the nonlinear characteristic and the cognitive function of the brain. Fuzzy approximate entropy and fuzzy sample entropy are applied to characterize the model-based simulated series and electroencephalograph (EEG) series of Alzheimer's disease (AD). The effectiveness and advantages of these two kinds of fuzzy entropy are first verified through the simulated EEG series generated by the alpha rhythm model, including stronger relative consistency and robustness. Furthermore, in order to detect the abnormality of irregularity and chaotic behavior in the AD brain, the complexity features based on these two fuzzy entropies are extracted in the delta, theta, alpha, and beta bands. It is demonstrated that, due to the introduction of fuzzy set theory, the fuzzy entropies could better distinguish EEG signals of AD from that of the normal than the approximate entropy and sample entropy. Moreover, the entropy values of AD are significantly decreased in the alpha band, particularly in the temporal brain region, such as electrode T3 and T4. In addition, fuzzy sample entropy could achieve higher group differences in different brain regions and higher average classification accuracy of 88.1% by support vector machine classifier. The obtained results prove that fuzzy sample entropy may be a powerful tool to characterize the complexity abnormalities of AD, which could be helpful in further understanding of the disease.

  12. Hyperactivation of HUSH complex function by Charcot-Marie-Tooth disease mutation in MORC2.

    PubMed

    Tchasovnikarova, Iva A; Timms, Richard T; Douse, Christopher H; Roberts, Rhys C; Dougan, Gordon; Kingston, Robert E; Modis, Yorgo; Lehner, Paul J

    2017-07-01

    Dominant mutations in the MORC2 gene have recently been shown to cause axonal Charcot-Marie-Tooth (CMT) disease, but the cellular function of MORC2 is poorly understood. Here, through a genome-wide CRISPR-Cas9-mediated forward genetic screen, we identified MORC2 as an essential gene required for epigenetic silencing by the HUSH complex. HUSH recruits MORC2 to target sites in heterochromatin. We exploited a new method, differential viral accessibility (DIVA), to show that loss of MORC2 results in chromatin decompaction at these target loci, which is concomitant with a loss of H3K9me3 deposition and transcriptional derepression. The ATPase activity of MORC2 is critical for HUSH-mediated silencing, and the most common alteration affecting the ATPase domain in CMT patients (p.Arg252Trp) hyperactivates HUSH-mediated repression in neuronal cells. These data define a critical role for MORC2 in epigenetic silencing by the HUSH complex and provide a mechanistic basis underpinning the role of MORC2 mutations in CMT disease.

  13. Leigh disease with brainstem involvement in complex I deficiency due to assembly factor NDUFAF2 defect.

    PubMed

    Herzer, M; Koch, J; Prokisch, H; Rodenburg, R; Rauscher, C; Radauer, W; Forstner, R; Pilz, P; Rolinski, B; Freisinger, P; Mayr, J A; Sperl, W

    2010-02-01

    Mitochondrial NADH: ubiquinone oxidoreductase (complex I) deficiency accounts for most defects in mitochondrial oxidative phosphorylation. Pathogenic mutations have been described in all 7 mitochondrial and 12 of the 38 nuclear encoded subunits as well as in assembly factors by interfering with the building of the mature enzyme complex within the inner mitochondrial membrane. We now describe a male patient with a novel homozygous stop mutation in the NDUFAF2 gene. The boy presented with severe apnoea and nystagmus. MRI showed brainstem lesions without involvement of basal ganglia and thalamus, plasma lactate was normal or close to normal. He died after a fulminate course within 2 months after the first crisis. Neuropathology verified Leigh disease. We give a synopsis with other reported patients. Within the clinical spectrum of Leigh disease, patients with mutations in NDUFAF2 present with a distinct clinical pattern with predominantly brainstem involvement on MRI. The diagnosis should not be missed in spite of the normal lactate and lack of thalamus and basal ganglia changes on brain MRI.

  14. Characterization of complexity in the electroencephalograph activity of Alzheimer's disease based on fuzzy entropy

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cao, Yuzhen; Cai, Lihui; Wang, Jiang; Wang, Ruofan; Yu, Haitao; Cao, Yibin; Liu, Jing

    2015-08-01

    In this paper, experimental neurophysiologic recording and statistical analysis are combined to investigate the nonlinear characteristic and the cognitive function of the brain. Fuzzy approximate entropy and fuzzy sample entropy are applied to characterize the model-based simulated series and electroencephalograph (EEG) series of Alzheimer's disease (AD). The effectiveness and advantages of these two kinds of fuzzy entropy are first verified through the simulated EEG series generated by the alpha rhythm model, including stronger relative consistency and robustness. Furthermore, in order to detect the abnormality of irregularity and chaotic behavior in the AD brain, the complexity features based on these two fuzzy entropies are extracted in the delta, theta, alpha, and beta bands. It is demonstrated that, due to the introduction of fuzzy set theory, the fuzzy entropies could better distinguish EEG signals of AD from that of the normal than the approximate entropy and sample entropy. Moreover, the entropy values of AD are significantly decreased in the alpha band, particularly in the temporal brain region, such as electrode T3 and T4. In addition, fuzzy sample entropy could achieve higher group differences in different brain regions and higher average classification accuracy of 88.1% by support vector machine classifier. The obtained results prove that fuzzy sample entropy may be a powerful tool to characterize the complexity abnormalities of AD, which could be helpful in further understanding of the disease.

  15. A dominance shift from the zebra mussel to the invasive quagga mussel may alter the trophic transfer of metals.

    PubMed

    Matthews, Jonathan; Schipper, Aafke M; Hendriks, A Jan; Yen Le, T T; Bij de Vaate, Abraham; van der Velde, Gerard; Leuven, Rob S E W

    2015-08-01

    Bioinvasions are a major cause of biodiversity and ecosystem changes. The rapid range expansion of the invasive quagga mussel (Dreissena rostriformis bugensis) causing a dominance shift from zebra mussels (Dreissena polymorpha) to quagga mussels, may alter the risk of secondary poisoning to predators. Mussel samples were collected from various water bodies in the Netherlands, divided into size classes, and analysed for metal concentrations. Concentrations of nickel and copper in quagga mussels were significantly lower than in zebra mussels overall. In lakes, quagga mussels contained significantly higher concentrations of aluminium, iron and lead yet significantly lower concentrations of zinc66, cadmium111, copper, nickel, cobalt and molybdenum than zebra mussels. In the river water type quagga mussel soft tissues contained significantly lower concentrations of zinc66. Our results suggest that a dominance shift from zebra to quagga mussels may reduce metal exposure of predator species. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  16. [Children's medically complex diseases unit. A model required in all our hospitals].

    PubMed

    Climent Alcalá, Francisco José; García Fernández de Villalta, Marta; Escosa García, Luis; Rodríguez Alonso, Aroa; Albajara Velasco, Luis Adolfo

    2018-01-01

    The increase in survival of children with severe diseases has led to the rise of children with chronic diseases, sometimes with lifelong disabilities. In 2008, a unit for the specific care of medically complex children (MCC) was created in Hospital La Paz. To describe the work and care activities of this Unit. Patients and methods An analysis was performed on all discharge reports of the Unit between January 2014 and July 2016. The MCC Unit has 6 beds and daily outpatient clinic. A total of 1,027 patients have been treated since the creation of the unit, with 243 from 2014. The median age was 24.2 months (IQ: 10.21-84.25). The large majority (92.59%) have multiple diseases, the most frequent chronic conditions observed were neurological (76.95%), gastrointestinal (63.78%), and respiratory diseases (61.72%). More than two-thirds (69.54%) of MCC are dependent on technology, 53.49% on respiratory support, and 35.80% on nutritional support. Hospital admission rates have increased annually. There have been 403 admissions since 2014, of which 8.93% were re-admissions within 30 days of hospital discharge. The median stay during 2014-2016 was 6 days (IQ: 3-14). The occupancy rate has been above 100% for this period. Currently, 210 patients remain on follow-up (86.42%), and 11 children (4.53%) were discharged to their referral hospitals. The mortality rate is 9.05% (22 deaths). The main condition of these 22 patients was neurological (9 patients). Infectious diseases were the leading cause of death. MCC should be treated in specialized units in tertiary or high-level hospitals. Copyright © 2016 Asociación Española de Pediatría. Publicado por Elsevier España, S.L.U. All rights reserved.

  17. Congenital heart disease: interrelation between German diagnosis-related groups system and Aristotle complexity score.

    PubMed

    Sinzobahamvya, Nicodème; Photiadis, Joachim; Arenz, Claudia; Kopp, Thorsten; Hraska, Viktor; Asfour, Boulos

    2010-06-01

    The Disease-Related Groups (DRGs) system postulates that inpatient stays with similar levels of clinical complexity are expected to consume similar amounts of resources. This, applied to surgery of congenital heart disease, suggests that the higher the complexity of procedures as estimated by the Aristotle complexity score, the higher hospital reimbursement should be. This study analyses how much case-mix index (CMI) generated by German DRG 2009 version correlates with Aristotle score. A total of 456 DRG cases of year 2008 were regrouped according to German DRG 2009 and related cost-weight values and overall CMI evaluated. Corresponding Aristotle basic and comprehensive complexity scores (ABC and ACC) and levels were determined. Associated surgical performance (Aristotle score times hospital survival) was estimated. Spearman 'r' correlation coefficients were calculated between Aristotle scores and cost-weights. Goodness of fit 'r(2)' from derived regression was determined. Correlation was estimated to be optimal if Spearman 'r' and derived goodness of fit 'r(2)' approached 1 value. CMI was 8.787 while mean ABC and ACC scores were 7.64 and 9.27, respectively. Hospital survival was 98.5%: therefore, surgical performance attained 7.53 (ABC score) and 9.13 (ACC score). ABC and ACC scores and levels positively correlated with cost-weights. With Spearman 'r' of 1 and goodness of fit 'r(2)' of 0.9790, scores of the six ACC levels correlated at best. The equation was y = 0.5591 + 0.939x, in which y stands for cost-weight (CMI) and x for score of ACC level. ACC score correlates almost perfectly with corresponding cost-weights (CMI) generated by the German DRG 2009. It could therefore be used as the basis for hospital reimbursement to compensate in conformity with procedures' complexity. Extrapolated CMI in this series would be 9.264. Modulation of reimbursement according to surgical performance could be established and thus 'reward' quality in congenital heart surgery

  18. Decreased Complexity in Alzheimer's Disease: Resting-State fMRI Evidence of Brain Entropy Mapping

    PubMed Central

    Wang, Bin; Niu, Yan; Miao, Liwen; Cao, Rui; Yan, Pengfei; Guo, Hao; Li, Dandan; Guo, Yuxiang; Yan, Tianyi; Wu, Jinglong; Xiang, Jie; Zhang, Hui

    2017-01-01

    Alzheimer's disease (AD) is a frequently observed, irreversible brain function disorder among elderly individuals. Resting-state functional magnetic resonance imaging (rs-fMRI) has been introduced as an alternative approach to assessing brain functional abnormalities in AD patients. However, alterations in the brain rs-fMRI signal complexities in mild cognitive impairment (MCI) and AD patients remain unclear. Here, we described the novel application of permutation entropy (PE) to investigate the abnormal complexity of rs-fMRI signals in MCI and AD patients. The rs-fMRI signals of 30 normal controls (NCs), 33 early MCI (EMCI), 32 late MCI (LMCI), and 29 AD patients were obtained from the Alzheimer's disease Neuroimaging Initiative (ADNI) database. After preprocessing, whole-brain entropy maps of the four groups were extracted and subjected to Gaussian smoothing. We performed a one-way analysis of variance (ANOVA) on the brain entropy maps of the four groups. The results after adjusting for age and sex differences together revealed that the patients with AD exhibited lower complexity than did the MCI and NC controls. We found five clusters that exhibited significant differences and were distributed primarily in the occipital, frontal, and temporal lobes. The average PE of the five clusters exhibited a decreasing trend from MCI to AD. The AD group exhibited the least complexity. Additionally, the average PE of the five clusters was significantly positively correlated with the Mini-Mental State Examination (MMSE) scores and significantly negatively correlated with Functional Assessment Questionnaire (FAQ) scores and global Clinical Dementia Rating (CDR) scores in the patient groups. Significant correlations were also found between the PE and regional homogeneity (ReHo) in the patient groups. These results indicated that declines in PE might be related to changes in regional functional homogeneity in AD. These findings suggested that complexity analyses using PE in rs

  19. Health-related fitness profiles in adolescents with complex congenital heart disease.

    PubMed

    Klausen, Susanne Hwiid; Wetterslev, Jørn; Søndergaard, Lars; Andersen, Lars L; Mikkelsen, Ulla Ramer; Dideriksen, Kasper; Zoffmann, Vibeke; Moons, Philip

    2015-04-01

    This study investigates whether subgroups of different health-related fitness (HrF) profiles exist among girls and boys with complex congenital heart disease (ConHD) and how these are associated with lifestyle behaviors. We measured the cardiorespiratory fitness, muscle strength, and body composition of 158 adolescents aged 13-16 years with previous surgery for a complex ConHD. Data on lifestyle behaviors were collected concomitantly between October 2010 and April 2013. A cluster analysis was conducted to identify profiles with similar HrF. For comparisons between clusters, multivariate analyses of covariance were used to test the differences in lifestyle behaviors. Three distinct profiles were formed: (1) Robust (43, 27%; 20 girls and 23 boys); (2) Moderately Robust (85, 54%; 37 girls and 48 boys); and (3) Less robust (30, 19%; 9 girls and 21 boys). The participants in the Robust clusters reported leading a physically active lifestyle and participants in the Less robust cluster reported leading a sedentary lifestyle. Diagnoses were evenly distributed between clusters. The cluster analysis attributed some of the variability in cardiorespiratory fitness among adolescents with complex ConHD to lifestyle behaviors and physical activity. Profiling of HrF offers a valuable new option in the management of person-centered health promotion. Copyright © 2015 Society for Adolescent Health and Medicine. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  20. Mesenchymal cell differentiation and diseases: involvement of translin/TRAX complexes and associated proteins.

    PubMed

    Kasai, Masataka; Ishida, Reiko; Nakahara, Kazuhiko; Okumura, Ko; Aoki, Katsunori

    2018-05-08

    Translin and translin-associated factor X (translin/TRAX) proteins have been implicated in a variety of cellular activities central to nucleic acid metabolism. Accumulating evidence indicates that translin/TRAX complexes participate in processes ensuring the replication of DNA, as well as cell division. Significant progress has been made in understanding the roles of translin/TRAX complexes in RNA metabolism, such as through RNA-induced silencing complex activation or the microRNA depletion that occurs in Dicer deficiency. At the cellular level, translin-deficient (Tsn -/- ) mice display delayed endochondral ossification or progressive bone marrow failure with ectopic osteogenesis and adipogenesis, suggesting involvement in mesenchymal cell differentiation. In this review, we summarize the molecular and cellular functions of translin homo-octamer and translin/TRAX hetero-octamer. Finally, we discuss the multifaceted roles of translin, TRAX, and associated proteins in the healthy and disease states. © 2018 The Authors. Annals of the New York Academy of Sciences published by Wiley Periodicals, Inc. on behalf of The New York Academy of Sciences.

  1. Intervention fidelity for a complex behaviour change intervention in community pharmacy addressing cardiovascular disease risk.

    PubMed

    McNamara, K P; O'Reilly, S L; George, J; Peterson, G M; Jackson, S L; Duncan, G; Howarth, H; Dunbar, J A

    2015-12-01

    Delivery of cardiovascular disease (CVD) prevention programs by community pharmacists appears effective and enhances health service access. However, their capacity to implement complex behavioural change processes during patient counselling remains largely unexplored. This study aims to determine intervention fidelity by pharmacists for behavioural components of a complex educational intervention for CVD prevention. After receiving training to improve lifestyle and medicines adherence, pharmacists recruited 70 patients aged 50-74 years without established CVD, and taking antihypertensive or lipid lowering therapy. Patients received five counselling sessions, each at monthly intervals. Researchers assessed biomedical and behavioural risk factors at baseline and six months. Pharmacists documented key outcomes from counselling after each session. Most patients (86%) reported suboptimal cardiovascular diets, 41% reported suboptimal medicines adherence, and 39% were physically inactive. Of those advised to complete the intervention, 85% attended all five sessions. Pharmacists achieved patient agreement with most recommended goals for behaviour change, and overwhelmingly translated goals into practical behavioural strategies. Barriers to changing behaviours were regularly documented, and pharmacists reported most behavioural strategies as having had some success. Meaningful improvements to health behaviours were observed post-intervention. Findings support further exploration of pharmacists' potential roles for delivering interventions with complex behaviour change requirements. © The Author 2015. Published by Oxford University Press. All rights reserved. For permissions, please email: journals.permissions@oup.com.

  2. Early responses to zebra mussels in the Great Lakes: a journey from information vacuum to policy and regulation

    Griffiths, Ronald W.; Schloesser, Don W.; Kovalak, William P.

    2013-01-01

    Invasive species such as zebra mussels pose a threat to the economies and environments of coastal and fresh-water habitats around the world. Consequently, it is important that government policies and programs be adequate to protect these waters from invaders. This chapter documents key events that took place in the early years (1988-1991) of zebra mussel colonization of the Laurentian Great Lakes and evaluates government responses (policies and programs) to this disruptive, invasive, freshwater species.

  3. Severe pandemic 2009 H1N1 influenza disease due to pathogenic immune complexes

    PubMed Central

    Monsalvo, Ana Clara; Batalle, Juan P.; Lopez, M. Florencia; Krause, Jens C.; Klemenc, Jennifer; Zea, Johanna; Maskin, Bernardo; Bugna, Jimena; Rubinstein, Carlos; Aguilar, Leandro; Dalurzo, Liliana; Libster, Romina; Savy, Vilma; Baumeister, Elsa; Aguilar, Liliana; Cabral, Graciela; Font, Julia; Solari, Liliana; Weller, Kevin P.; Johnson, Joyce; Echavarria, Marcela; Edwards, Kathryn M.; Chappell, James D.; Crowe, James E.; Williams, John V.; Melendi, Guillermina A.; Polack, Fernando P.

    2010-01-01

    Pandemic influenza viruses often cause severe disease in middle-aged adults without preexistent co-morbidities. The mechanism of illness associated with severe disease in this age group is not well understood1–10. Here, we demonstrate preexisting serum antibody that cross-reacts with, but does not protect against 2009 H1N1 influenza virus in middle-aged adults. Non-protective antibody is associated with immune complex(IC)-mediated disease after infection. High titers of serum antibody of low avidity for H1-2009 antigen, and low avidity pulmonary ICs against the same protein were detected in severely ill patients. Moreover, C4d deposition - a sensitive marker of complement activation mediated by ICs- was present in lung sections of fatal cases. Archived lung sections from adults with confirmed fatal influenza 1957 H2N2 infection revealed a similar mechanism of illness. These observations provide a novel biological mechanism for the unusual age distribution of severe cases during influenza pandemics. PMID:21131958

  4. Reductions in the mitochondrial enzyme α-ketoglutarate dehydrogenase complex in neurodegenerative disease - beneficial or detrimental?

    PubMed

    Chen, Huanlian; Denton, Travis T; Xu, Hui; Calingasan, Noel; Beal, M Flint; Gibson, Gary E

    2016-12-01

    Reductions in metabolism and excess oxidative stress are prevalent in multiple neurodegenerative diseases. The activity of the mitochondrial enzyme α-ketoglutarate dehydrogenase complex (KGDHC) appears central to these abnormalities. KGDHC is diminished in multiple neurodegenerative diseases. KGDHC can not only be rate limiting for NADH production and for substrate level phosphorylation, but is also a source of reactive oxygen species (ROS). The goal of these studies was to determine how changes in KGDHC modify baseline ROS, the ability to buffer ROS, baseline glutathionylation, calcium modulation and cell death in response to external oxidants. In vivo, reducing KGDHC with adeno virus diminished neurogenesis and increased oxidative stress. In vitro, treatments of short duration increased ROS and glutathionylation and enhanced the ability of the cells to diminish the ROS from added oxidants. However, long-term reductions lessened the ability to diminish ROS, diminished glutathionylation and exaggerated oxidant-induced changes in calcium and cell death. Increasing KGDHC enhanced the ability of the cells to diminish externally added ROS and protected against oxidant-induced changes in calcium and cell death. The results suggest that brief periods of diminished KGDHC are protective, while prolonged reductions are harmful. Furthermore, elevated KGDHC activities are protective. Thus, mitogenic therapies that increase KGDHC may be beneficial in neurodegenerative diseases. Read the Editorial Highlight for this article on Page 689. © 2016 International Society for Neurochemistry.

  5. Quantitative disease resistance: to better understand parasite-mediated selection on major histocompatibility complex

    PubMed Central

    Westerdahl, Helena; Asghar, Muhammad; Hasselquist, Dennis; Bensch, Staffan

    2012-01-01

    We outline a descriptive framework of how candidate alleles of the immune system associate with infectious diseases in natural populations of animals. Three kinds of alleles can be separated when both prevalence of infection and infection intensity are measured—qualitative disease resistance, quantitative disease resistance and susceptibility alleles. Our descriptive framework demonstrates why alleles for quantitative resistance and susceptibility cannot be separated based on prevalence data alone, but are distinguishable on infection intensity. We then present a case study to evaluate a previous finding of a positive association between prevalence of a severe avian malaria infection (GRW2, Plasmodium ashfordi) and a major histocompatibility complex (MHC) class I allele (B4b) in great reed warblers Acrocephalus arundinaceus. Using the same dataset, we find that individuals with allele B4b have lower GRW2 infection intensities than individuals without this allele. Therefore, allele B4b provides quantitative resistance rather than increasing susceptibility to infection. This implies that birds carrying B4b can mount an immune response that suppresses the acute-phase GRW2 infection, while birds without this allele cannot and may die. We argue that it is important to determine whether MHC alleles related to infections are advantageous (quantitative and qualitative resistance) or disadvantageous (susceptibility) to obtain a more complete picture of pathogen-mediated balancing selection. PMID:21733902

  6. Quantitative disease resistance: to better understand parasite-mediated selection on major histocompatibility complex.

    PubMed

    Westerdahl, Helena; Asghar, Muhammad; Hasselquist, Dennis; Bensch, Staffan

    2012-02-07

    We outline a descriptive framework of how candidate alleles of the immune system associate with infectious diseases in natural populations of animals. Three kinds of alleles can be separated when both prevalence of infection and infection intensity are measured--qualitative disease resistance, quantitative disease resistance and susceptibility alleles. Our descriptive framework demonstrates why alleles for quantitative resistance and susceptibility cannot be separated based on prevalence data alone, but are distinguishable on infection intensity. We then present a case study to evaluate a previous finding of a positive association between prevalence of a severe avian malaria infection (GRW2, Plasmodium ashfordi) and a major histocompatibility complex (MHC) class I allele (B4b) in great reed warblers Acrocephalus arundinaceus. Using the same dataset, we find that individuals with allele B4b have lower GRW2 infection intensities than individuals without this allele. Therefore, allele B4b provides quantitative resistance rather than increasing susceptibility to infection. This implies that birds carrying B4b can mount an immune response that suppresses the acute-phase GRW2 infection, while birds without this allele cannot and may die. We argue that it is important to determine whether MHC alleles related to infections are advantageous (quantitative and qualitative resistance) or disadvantageous (susceptibility) to obtain a more complete picture of pathogen-mediated balancing selection.

  7. Clinical characteristics and outcomes of HIV-associated immune complex kidney disease.

    PubMed

    Booth, John W; Hamzah, Lisa; Jose, Sophie; Horsfield, Catherine; O'Donnell, Patrick; McAdoo, Stephen; Kumar, Emil A; Turner-Stokes, Tabitha; Khatib, Nadia; Das, Partha; Naftalin, Claire; Mackie, Nicola; Kingdon, Ed; Williams, Debbie; Hendry, Bruce M; Sabin, Caroline; Jones, Rachael; Levy, Jeremy; Hilton, Rachel; Connolly, John; Post, Frank A

    2016-12-01

    The pathogenesis and natural history of HIV-associated immune complex kidney disease (HIVICK) is not well understood. Key questions remain unanswered, including the role of HIV infection and replication in disease development and the efficacy of antiretroviral therapy (ART) in the prevention and treatment of disease. In this multicentre study, we describe the renal pathology of HIVICK and compare the clinical characteristics of patients with HIVICK with those with IgA nephropathy and HIV-associated nephropathy (HIVAN). Poisson regression models were used to identify risk factors for each of these pathologies. Between 1998 and 2012, 65 patients were diagnosed with HIVICK, 27 with IgA nephropathy and 70 with HIVAN. Black ethnicity and HIV RNA were associated with HIVICK, receipt of ART with IgA nephropathy and black ethnicity and CD4 cell count with HIVAN. HIVICK was associated with lower rates of progression to end-stage kidney disease compared with HIVAN and IgA nephropathy (P < 0.0001). Patients with HIVICK who initiated ART and achieved suppression of HIV RNA experienced improvements in estimated glomerular filtration rate and proteinuria. These findings suggest a pathogenic role for HIV replication in the development of HIVICK and that ART may improve kidney function in patients who have detectable HIV RNA at the time of HIVICK diagnosis. Our data also suggest that IgA nephropathy should be viewed as a separate entity and not included in the HIVICK spectrum. © The Author 2016. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of ERA-EDTA. All rights reserved.

  8. Factorial microarray analysis of zebra mussel (Dreissena polymorpha: Dreissenidae, Bivalvia) adhesion

    PubMed Central

    2010-01-01

    Background The zebra mussel (Dreissena polymorpha) has been well known for its expertise in attaching to substances under the water. Studies in past decades on this underwater adhesion focused on the adhesive protein isolated from the byssogenesis apparatus of the zebra mussel. However, the mechanism of the initiation, maintenance, and determination of the attachment process remains largely unknown. Results In this study, we used a zebra mussel cDNA microarray previously developed in our lab and a factorial analysis to identify the genes that were involved in response to the changes of four factors: temperature (Factor A), current velocity (Factor B), dissolved oxygen (Factor C), and byssogenesis status (Factor D). Twenty probes in the microarray were found to be modified by one of the factors. The transcription products of four selected genes, DPFP-BG20_A01, EGP-BG97/192_B06, EGP-BG13_G05, and NH-BG17_C09 were unique to the zebra mussel foot based on the results of quantitative reverse transcription PCR (qRT-PCR). The expression profiles of these four genes under the attachment and non-attachment were also confirmed by qRT-PCR and the result is accordant to that from microarray assay. The in situ hybridization with the RNA probes of two identified genes DPFP-BG20_A01 and EGP-BG97/192_B06 indicated that both of them were expressed by a type of exocrine gland cell located in the middle part of the zebra mussel foot. Conclusions The results of this study suggested that the changes of D. polymorpha byssogenesis status and the environmental factors can dramatically affect the expression profiles of the genes unique to the foot. It turns out that the factorial design and analysis of the microarray experiment is a reliable method to identify the influence of multiple factors on the expression profiles of the probesets in the microarray; therein it provides a powerful tool to reveal the mechanism of zebra mussel underwater attachment. PMID:20509938

  9. eQTL networks unveil enriched mRNA master integrators downstream of complex disease-associated SNPs.

    PubMed

    Li, Haiquan; Pouladi, Nima; Achour, Ikbel; Gardeux, Vincent; Li, Jianrong; Li, Qike; Zhang, Hao Helen; Martinez, Fernando D; 'Skip' Garcia, Joe G N; Lussier, Yves A

    2015-12-01

    The causal and interplay mechanisms of Single Nucleotide Polymorphisms (SNPs) associated with complex diseases (complex disease SNPs) investigated in genome-wide association studies (GWAS) at the transcriptional level (mRNA) are poorly understood despite recent advancements such as discoveries reported in the Encyclopedia of DNA Elements (ENCODE) and Genotype-Tissue Expression (GTex). Protein interaction network analyses have successfully improved our understanding of both single gene diseases (Mendelian diseases) and complex diseases. Whether the mRNAs downstream of complex disease genes are central or peripheral in the genetic information flow relating DNA to mRNA remains unclear and may be disease-specific. Using expression Quantitative Trait Loci (eQTL) that provide DNA to mRNA associations and network centrality metrics, we hypothesize that we can unveil the systems properties of information flow between SNPs and the transcriptomes of complex diseases. We compare different conditions such as naïve SNP assignments and stringent linkage disequilibrium (LD) free assignments for transcripts to remove confounders from LD. Additionally, we compare the results from eQTL networks between lymphoblastoid cell lines and liver tissue. Empirical permutation resampling (p<0.001) and theoretic Mann-Whitney U test (p<10(-30)) statistics indicate that mRNAs corresponding to complex disease SNPs via eQTL associations are likely to be regulated by a larger number of SNPs than expected. We name this novel property mRNA hubness in eQTL networks, and further term mRNAs with high hubness as master integrators. mRNA master integrators receive and coordinate the perturbation signals from large numbers of polymorphisms and respond to the personal genetic architecture integratively. This genetic signal integration contrasts with the mechanism underlying some Mendelian diseases, where a genetic polymorphism affecting a single protein hub produces a divergent signal that affects a large

  10. Complex single step skull reconstruction in Gorham's disease - a technical report and review of the literature.

    PubMed

    Ohla, Victoria; Bayoumi, Ahmed B; Hefty, Markus; Anderson, Matthew; Kasper, Ekkehard M

    2015-03-11

    Gorham's disease is a rare osteolytic disorder characterized by progressive resorption of bone and replacement of osseous matrix by a proliferative non-neoplastic vascular or lymphatic tissue. A standardized treatment protocol has not yet been defined due to the unpredictable natural history of the disease and variable clinical presentations. No single treatment has proven to be superior in arresting the course of the disease. Trials have included surgery, radiation and medical therapies using drugs such as calcium salts, vitamin D supplements and hormones. We report on our advantageous experience in the management of this osteolyic disorder in a case when it affected only the skull vault. A brief review of pertinent literature about Gorham's disease with skull involvement is provided. A 25-year-old Caucasian male presented with a skull depression over the left fronto-temporal region. He noticed progressive enlargement of the skull defect associated with local pain and mild headache. Physical examination revealed a tender palpable depression of the fronto-temporal convexity. Conventional X-ray of the skull showed widespread loss of bone substance. Subsequent CT scans showed features of patchy erosions indicative of an underlying osteolysis. MRI also revealed marginal enhancement at the site of the defect. The patient was in need of a pathological diagnosis as well as complex reconstruction of the afflicted area. A density graded CT scan was done to determine the variable degrees of osteolysis and a custom made allograft was designed for cranioplasty preoperatively to allow for a single step excisional craniectomy with synchronous skull repair. Gorham's disease was diagnosed based on histopathological examination. No neurological deficit or wound complications were reported postoperatively. Over a two-year follow up period, the patient had no evidence of local recurrence or other systemic involvement. A single step excisional craniectomy and cranioplasty can be an

  11. Experiences of mothers of infants with congenital heart disease before, during, and after complex cardiac surgery.

    PubMed

    Harvey, Kayla A; Kovalesky, Andrea; Woods, Ronald K; Loan, Lori A

    2013-01-01

    Experiences of mothers of infants undergoing complex heart surgery were explored to build evidence-based family-centered interventions. Congenital heart disease is the most frequent birth defect in the United States and is common worldwide. Eight mothers recalled through journal entries their experiences of the days before, during, and after their infant's surgery and shared advice for other mothers. Colaizzi's phenomenological method was utilized for data analysis. A validation survey of seven additional mothers from a support group occurred via email. Six themes were identified and validated: Feeling Intense Fluctuating Emotion; Navigating the Medical World; Dealing with the Unknown; Facing the Possibility of My Baby Dying, Finding Meaning and Spiritual Connection, and the umbrella theme of Mothering Through It All. Through a clearer understanding of experiences as described by mothers, health-care providers may gain insight as to how to better support mothers of infants undergoing heart surgery. Copyright © 2013 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  12. Partnering Urban Academic Medical Centers And Rural Primary Care Clinicians To Provide Complex Chronic Disease Care

    PubMed Central

    Arora, Sanjeev; Kalishman, Summers; Dion, Denise; Som, Dara; Thornton, Karla; Bankhurst, Arthur; Boyle, Jeanne; Harkins, Michelle; Moseley, Kathleen; Murata, Glen; Komaramy, Miriam; Katzman, Joanna; Colleran, Kathleen; Deming, Paulina; Yutzy, Sean

    2013-01-01

    Many of the estimated thirty-two million Americans expected to gain coverage under the Affordable Care Act are likely to have high levels of unmet need for various chronic illnesses and to live in areas that are already underserved. In New Mexico an innovative new model of health care education and delivery known as Project ECHO (Extension for Community Healthcare Outcomes) provides high-quality primary and specialty care to a comparable population. Using state-of-the-art telehealth technology and case-based learning, Project ECHO enables specialists at the University of New Mexico Health Sciences Center to partner with primary care clinicians in underserved areas to deliver complex specialty care to patients with hepatitis C, asthma, diabetes, HIV/AIDS, pediatric obesity and mental illness. As of March 2011, 298 Project ECHO teams across New Mexico have delivered more than 10,000 specialty care consultations for hepatitis C and other chronic diseases. PMID:21596757

  13. Modeling infectious disease dynamics in the complex landscape of global health

    PubMed Central

    Heesterbeek, Hans; Anderson, Roy; Andreasen, Viggo; Bansal, Shweta; De Angelis, Daniela; Dye, Chris; Eames, Ken; Edmunds, John; Frost, Simon; Funk, Sebastian; Hollingsworth, Deirdre; House, Thomas; Isham, Valerie; Klepac, Petra; Lessler, Justin; Lloyd-Smith, James; Metcalf, Jessica; Mollison, Denis; Pellis, Lorenzo; Pulliam, Juliet; Roberts, Mick; Viboud, Cecile

    2015-01-01

    Despite some notable successes in the control of infectious diseases, transmissible pathogens still pose an enormous threat to human and animal health. The ecological and evolutionary dynamics of infections play out on a wide range of interconnected temporal, organizational and spatial scales, which even within a single pathogen often span hours to months, cellular to ecosystem levels, and local to pandemic spread. Some pathogens are directly transmitted between individuals of a single species, while others circulate among multiple hosts, need arthropod vectors, or can survive in environmental reservoirs. Many factors, including increasing antimicrobial resistance, increased human connectivity, and dynamic human behavior, raise prevention and control from formerly national to international issues. In the face of this complexity, mathematical models offer essential tools for synthesizing information to understand epidemiological patterns, and for developing the quantitative evidence base for decision-making in global health. PMID:25766240

  14. Single Pathogen Challenge with Agents of the Bovine Respiratory Disease Complex.

    PubMed

    Gershwin, Laurel J; Van Eenennaam, Alison L; Anderson, Mark L; McEligot, Heather A; Shao, Matt X; Toaff-Rosenstein, Rachel; Taylor, Jeremy F; Neibergs, Holly L; Womack, James

    2015-01-01

    Bovine respiratory disease complex (BRDC) is an important cause of mortality and morbidity in cattle; costing the dairy and beef industries millions of dollars annually, despite the use of vaccines and antibiotics. BRDC is caused by one or more of several viruses (bovine respiratory syncytial virus, bovine herpes type 1 also known as infectious bovine rhinotracheitis, and bovine viral diarrhea virus), which predispose animals to infection with one or more bacteria. These include: Pasteurella multocida, Mannheimia haemolytica, Mycoplasma bovis, and Histophilus somni. Some cattle appear to be more resistant to BRDC than others. We hypothesize that appropriate immune responses to these pathogens are subject to genetic control. To determine which genes are involved in the immune response to each of these pathogens it was first necessary to experimentally induce infection separately with each pathogen to document clinical and pathological responses in animals from which tissues were harvested for subsequent RNA sequencing. Herein these infections and animal responses are described.

  15. Single Pathogen Challenge with Agents of the Bovine Respiratory Disease Complex

    PubMed Central

    Gershwin, Laurel J.; Van Eenennaam, Alison L.; Anderson, Mark L.; McEligot, Heather A.; Toaff-Rosenstein, Rachel; Taylor, Jeremy F.; Neibergs, Holly L.; Womack, James

    2015-01-01

    Bovine respiratory disease complex (BRDC) is an important cause of mortality and morbidity in cattle; costing the dairy and beef industries millions of dollars annually, despite the use of vaccines and antibiotics. BRDC is caused by one or more of several viruses (bovine respiratory syncytial virus, bovine herpes type 1 also known as infectious bovine rhinotracheitis, and bovine viral diarrhea virus), which predispose animals to infection with one or more bacteria. These include: Pasteurella multocida, Mannheimia haemolytica, Mycoplasma bovis, and Histophilus somni. Some cattle appear to be more resistant to BRDC than others. We hypothesize that appropriate immune responses to these pathogens are subject to genetic control. To determine which genes are involved in the immune response to each of these pathogens it was first necessary to experimentally induce infection separately with each pathogen to document clinical and pathological responses in animals from which tissues were harvested for subsequent RNA sequencing. Herein these infections and animal responses are described. PMID:26571015

  16. Modeling infectious disease dynamics in the complex landscape of global health.

    PubMed

    Heesterbeek, Hans; Anderson, Roy M; Andreasen, Viggo; Bansal, Shweta; De Angelis, Daniela; Dye, Chris; Eames, Ken T D; Edmunds, W John; Frost, Simon D W; Funk, Sebastian; Hollingsworth, T Deirdre; House, Thomas; Isham, Valerie; Klepac, Petra; Lessler, Justin; Lloyd-Smith, James O; Metcalf, C Jessica E; Mollison, Denis; Pellis, Lorenzo; Pulliam, Juliet R C; Roberts, Mick G; Viboud, Cecile

    2015-03-13

    Despite some notable successes in the control of infectious diseases, transmissible pathogens still pose an enormous threat to human and animal health. The ecological and evolutionary dynamics of infections play out on a wide range of interconnected temporal, organizational, and spatial scales, which span hours to months, cells to ecosystems, and local to global spread. Moreover, some pathogens are directly transmitted between individuals of a single species, whereas others circulate among multiple hosts, need arthropod vectors, or can survive in environmental reservoirs. Many factors, including increasing antimicrobial resistance, increased human connectivity and changeable human behavior, elevate prevention and control from matters of national policy to international challenge. In the face of this complexity, mathematical models offer valuable tools for synthesizing information to understand epidemiological patterns, and for developing quantitative evidence for decision-making in global health. Copyright © 2015, American Association for the Advancement of Science.

  17. Submicroscopic interstitial deletion of the X chromosome explains a complex genetic syndrome dominated by Norrie disease.

    PubMed

    Gal, A; Wieringa, B; Smeets, D F; Bleeker-Wagemakers, L; Ropers, H H

    1986-01-01

    Norrie disease (ND), an X-linked recessive disorder, is characterized by congenital blindness followed by bulbar atrophy. We have examined a three-generation family in which ND is part of a complex X-linked syndrome with severe mental retardation, hypogonadism, growth disturbances, and increased susceptibility to infections as additional features. This syndrome is apparently due to an interstitial deletion, as evidenced by the failure of the L1.28 DNA probe (DXS7 locus, Xp11.3) to detect complementary DNA sequences on the defective X chromosome of an affected male and of several obligatory heterozygotes. Attempts to further define this deletion with other DNA probes from the proximal short arm of the X chromosome or by prometaphase chromosome analysis were unsuccessful.

  18. The power to detect linkage in complex disease by means of simple LOD-score analyses.

    PubMed Central

    Greenberg, D A; Abreu, P; Hodge, S E

    1998-01-01

    Maximum-likelihood analysis (via LOD score) provides the most powerful method for finding linkage when the mode of inheritance (MOI) is known. However, because one must assume an MOI, the application of LOD-score analysis to complex disease has been questioned. Although it is known that one can legitimately maximize the maximum LOD score with respect to genetic parameters, this approach raises three concerns: (1) multiple testing, (2) effect on power to detect linkage, and (3) adequacy of the approximate MOI for the true MOI. We evaluated the power of LOD scores to detect linkage when the true MOI was complex but a LOD score analysis assumed simple models. We simulated data from 14 different genetic models, including dominant and recessive at high (80%) and low (20%) penetrances, intermediate models, and several additive two-locus models. We calculated LOD scores by assuming two simple models, dominant and recessive, each with 50% penetrance, then took the higher of the two LOD scores as the raw test statistic and corrected for multiple tests. We call this test statistic "MMLS-C." We found that the ELODs for MMLS-C are >=80% of the ELOD under the true model when the ELOD for the true model is >=3. Similarly, the power to reach a given LOD score was usually >=80% that of the true model, when the power under the true model was >=60%. These results underscore that a critical factor in LOD-score analysis is the MOI at the linked locus, not that of the disease or trait per se. Thus, a limited set of simple genetic models in LOD-score analysis can work well in testing for linkage. PMID:9718328

  19. The power to detect linkage in complex disease by means of simple LOD-score analyses.

    PubMed

    Greenberg, D A; Abreu, P; Hodge, S E

    1998-09-01

    Maximum-likelihood analysis (via LOD score) provides the most powerful method for finding linkage when the mode of inheritance (MOI) is known. However, because one must assume an MOI, the application of LOD-score analysis to complex disease has been questioned. Although it is known that one can legitimately maximize the maximum LOD score with respect to genetic parameters, this approach raises three concerns: (1) multiple testing, (2) effect on power to detect linkage, and (3) adequacy of the approximate MOI for the true MOI. We evaluated the power of LOD scores to detect linkage when the true MOI was complex but a LOD score analysis assumed simple models. We simulated data from 14 different genetic models, including dominant and recessive at high (80%) and low (20%) penetrances, intermediate models, and several additive two-locus models. We calculated LOD scores by assuming two simple models, dominant and recessive, each with 50% penetrance, then took the higher of the two LOD scores as the raw test statistic and corrected for multiple tests. We call this test statistic "MMLS-C." We found that the ELODs for MMLS-C are >=80% of the ELOD under the true model when the ELOD for the true model is >=3. Similarly, the power to reach a given LOD score was usually >=80% that of the true model, when the power under the true model was >=60%. These results underscore that a critical factor in LOD-score analysis is the MOI at the linked locus, not that of the disease or trait per se. Thus, a limited set of simple genetic models in LOD-score analysis can work well in testing for linkage.

  20. Low-intensity laser radiation in complex treatment of inflammatory diseases of parodontium

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sokolova, Irina A.; Erina, Stanislava V.

    1995-04-01

    The problem of complex treatment of inflammatory disease of parodontium has become very acute and actual at the moment. The diseases of inflammatory nature are considered to be the most vital issues of the day. The state of the local immune system of oral cavity plays the most important role in the complicated mechanism of inflammatory process development in the tissues of parodontium. Recently physical factors have become predominant in the system of complex therapy of parodontitis. The application of low-intense laser radiation (LLR) is considered to be the most important and up-to-date method in the preventive dentistry. There were 60 patients of average damage rate suffering from chronic generalizing parodontitis at the age of 25 up to 55 under observation. The major goal of examination was to get the objective results of the following methods' application: parodontium index (Russel, 1956), hygiene index (Fyodorov, Volodkina, 1971), Bacterioscopy of dental-gingival pockets content, simple and broadened stomatoscopy (Kunin, 1970), SIgA level determination in mixed saliva (Manchini et all, 1965) and R-protein level in gingival blood (Kulberg, 1990). All the patients were split into 2 groups. The first group (30 patients) has undergone the laser therapy course while the second group of 30 patients couldn't get it (LLR). Despite the kind of therapy they have undergone, all the patients have got the local anti-inflammatory medicamental therapy. The results of clinical observations have proved the fact that laser therapy application makes it possible to shorten the course of treatment in 1.5 times. The shifts of oral cavity local resistance take place in case of chronic generalizing parodontitis. The direct immunostimulating effect could be observed as a result of LLR- therapy application. The close connection of both anti-inflammatory medicamental and LLR-therapy has proved the possibility of purposeful local immune status correction in case of parodontitis.

  1. Heart transplantation in the setting of complex congenital heart disease and physiologic single lung.

    PubMed

    Zuckerman, Warren A; Richmond, Marc E; Lee, Teresa M; Bacha, Emile A; Chai, Paul J; Chen, Jonathan M; Addonizio, Linda J

    2015-12-01

    To highlight the success of heart transplantation in patients with complex congenital heart disease and physiologic single lung by providing an update on the world's largest reported cohort. Demographic, perioperative, postoperative, and outcomes data were collected retrospectively on all patients undergoing heart transplant to single lung at Columbia University Medical Center since 1992, and compared with all other patients undergoing transplants performed for single ventricle or tetralogy of Fallot during that time. Twenty-two patients (mean age, 20.6 years; range, 5 months-47 years) underwent heart transplant to single lung. Compared with controls (n = 67), the single lung group had more male patients and a greater proportion of tetralogy compared with single ventricle patients, although the single lung group had fewer post-Fontan patients. Age, weight, and body surface area were similar between the groups as were use of mechanical circulatory support and mechanical ventilation before transplant. Median time to extubation, time on inotropes, and length of stay were similar. There were 3 perioperative deaths, including a patient who died during postoperative day 1 from primary graft failure, likely related to a combination of elevated pulmonary vascular resistance and volume load. There were 5 additional mortalities during intermediate- and long-term follow-up, none of which were related to single-lung physiology. There was no significant survival difference between the groups. In patients with complex congenital heart disease and single lung physiology, heart transplant alone remains an excellent option, with comparable outcomes to patients undergoing transplant with similar cardiac anatomy and dual lung physiology. Copyright © 2015 The American Association for Thoracic Surgery. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  2. Modeling the complex pathology of Alzheimer’s disease in Drosophila

    PubMed Central

    Fernandez-Funez, Pedro; de Mena, Lorena; Rincon-Limas, Diego E.

    2015-01-01

    Alzheimer’s disease (AD) is the leading cause of dementia and the most common neurodegenerative disorder. AD is mostly a sporadic disorder and its main risk factor is age, but mutations in three genes that promote the accumulation of the amyloid-β (Aβ42) peptide revealed the critical role of Amyloid precursor protein (APP) processing in AD. Neurofibrillary tangles enriched in tau are the other pathological hallmark of AD, but the lack of causative tau mutations still puzzles researchers. Here, we describe the contribution of a powerful invertebrate model, the fruit fly Drosophila melanogaster, to uncovering the function and pathogenesis of human APP, Aβ42, and tau. APP and tau participate in many complex cellular processes, although their main function is microtubule stabilization and the to-and-fro transport of axonal vesicles. Additionally, expression of secreted Aβ42 induces prominent neuronal death in Drosophila, a critical feature of AD, making this model a popular choice for identifying intrinsic and extrinsic factors mediating Aβ42 neurotoxicity. Overall, Drosophila has made significant contributions to better understand the complex pathology of AD, although additional insight can be expected from combining multiple transgenes, performing genome-wide loss-of-function screens, and testing anti-tau therapies alone or in combination with Aβ42. PMID:26024860

  3. Complex analysis of neuronal spike trains of deep brain nuclei in patients with Parkinson's disease.

    PubMed

    Chan, Hsiao-Lung; Lin, Ming-An; Lee, Shih-Tseng; Tsai, Yu-Tai; Chao, Pei-Kuang; Wu, Tony

    2010-04-05

    Deep brain stimulation (DBS) of the subthalamic nucleus (STN) has been used to alleviate symptoms of Parkinson's disease. During image-guided stereotactic surgery, signals from microelectrode recordings are used to distinguish the STN from adjacent areas, particularly from the substantia nigra pars reticulata (SNr). Neuronal firing patterns based on interspike intervals (ISI) are commonly used. In the present study, arrival time-based measures, including Lempel-Ziv complexity and deviation-from-Poisson index were employed. Our results revealed significant differences in the arrival time-based measures among non-motor STN, motor STN and SNr and better discrimination than the ISI-based measures. The larger deviations from the Poisson process in the SNr implied less complex dynamics of neuronal discharges. If spike classification was not used, the arrival time-based measures still produced statistical differences among STN subdivisions and SNr, but the ISI-based measures only showed significant differences between motor and non-motor STN. Arrival time-based measures are less affected by spike misclassifications, and may be used as an adjunct for the identification of the STN during microelectrode targeting. Copyright 2010 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  4. Synonymous codon usage of genes in polymerase complex of Newcastle disease virus.

    PubMed

    Kumar, Chandra Shekhar; Kumar, Sachin

    2017-06-01

    Newcastle disease virus (NDV) is pathogenic to both avian and non-avian species but extensively finds poultry as its primary host and causes heavy economic losses in the poultry industry. In this study, a total of 186 polymerase complex comprising of nucleoprotein (N), phosphoprotein (P), and large polymerase (L) genes of NDV was analyzed for synonymous codon usage. The relative synonymous codon usage and effective number of codons (ENC) values were used to estimate codon usage variation in each gene. Correspondence analysis (COA) was used to study the major trend in codon usage variation. Analyzing the ENC plot values against GC3s (at synonymous third codon position) we concluded that mutational pressure was the main factor determining codon usage bias than translational selection in NDV N, P, and L genes. Moreover, correlation analysis indicated, that aromaticity of N, P, and L genes also influenced the codon usage variation. The varied distribution of pathotypes for N, P, and L gene clearly suggests that change in codon usage for NDV is pathotype specific. The codon usage preference similarity in N, P, and L gene might be detrimental for polymerase complex functioning. The study represents a comprehensive analysis to date of N, P, and L genes codon usage pattern of NDV and provides a basic understanding of the mechanisms for codon usage bias. © 2017 WILEY-VCH Verlag GmbH & Co. KGaA, Weinheim.

  5. Complex nonlinear autonomic nervous system modulation link cardiac autonomic neuropathy and peripheral vascular disease.

    PubMed

    Khalaf, Kinda; Jelinek, Herbert F; Robinson, Caroline; Cornforth, David J; Tarvainen, Mika P; Al-Aubaidy, Hayder

    2015-01-01

    Physiological interactions are abundant within, and between, body systems. These interactions may evolve into discrete states during pathophysiological processes resulting from common mechanisms. An association between arterial stenosis, identified by low ankle-brachial pressure index (ABPI) and cardiovascular disease (CVD) as been reported. Whether an association between vascular calcification-characterized by high ABPI and a different pathophysiology-is similarly associated with CVD, has not been established. The current study aims to investigate the association between ABPI, and cardiac rhythm, as an indicator of cardiovascular health and functionality, utilizing heart rate variability (HRV). Two hundred and thirty six patients underwent ABPI assessment. Standard time and frequency domain, and non-linear HRV measures were determined from 5-min electrocardiogram. ABPI data were divided into normal (n = 101), low (n = 67) and high (n = 66) and compared to HRV measures.(DFAα1 and SampEn were significantly different between the low ABPI, high ABPI and control groups (p < 0.05). A possible coupling between arterial stenosis and vascular calcification with decreased and increased HRV respectively was observed. Our results suggest a model for interpreting the relationship between vascular pathophysiology and cardiac rhythm. The cardiovascular system may be viewed as a complex system comprising a number of interacting subsystems. These cardiac and vascular subsystems/networks may be coupled and undergo transitions in response to internal or external perturbations. From a clinical perspective, the significantly increased sample entropy compared to the normal ABPI group and the decreased and increased complex correlation properties measured by DFA for the low and high ABPI groups respectively, may be useful indicators that a more holistic treatment approach in line with this more complex clinical picture is required.

  6. Direct power comparisons between simple LOD scores and NPL scores for linkage analysis in complex diseases.

    PubMed

    Abreu, P C; Greenberg, D A; Hodge, S E

    1999-09-01

    Several methods have been proposed for linkage analysis of complex traits with unknown mode of inheritance. These methods include the LOD score maximized over disease models (MMLS) and the "nonparametric" linkage (NPL) statistic. In previous work, we evaluated the increase of type I error when maximizing over two or more genetic models, and we compared the power of MMLS to detect linkage, in a number of complex modes of inheritance, with analysis assuming the true model. In the present study, we compare MMLS and NPL directly. We simulated 100 data sets with 20 families each, using 26 generating models: (1) 4 intermediate models (penetrance of heterozygote between that of the two homozygotes); (2) 6 two-locus additive models; and (3) 16 two-locus heterogeneity models (admixture alpha = 1.0,.7,.5, and.3; alpha = 1.0 replicates simple Mendelian models). For LOD scores, we assumed dominant and recessive inheritance with 50% penetrance. We took the higher of the two maximum LOD scores and subtracted 0.3 to correct for multiple tests (MMLS-C). We compared expected maximum LOD scores and power, using MMLS-C and NPL as well as the true model. Since NPL uses only the affected family members, we also performed an affecteds-only analysis using MMLS-C. The MMLS-C was both uniformly more powerful than NPL for most cases we examined, except when linkage information was low, and close to the results for the true model under locus heterogeneity. We still found better power for the MMLS-C compared with NPL in affecteds-only analysis. The results show that use of two simple modes of inheritance at a fixed penetrance can have more power than NPL when the trait mode of inheritance is complex and when there is heterogeneity in the data set.

  7. Alkaline Phosphatases in the Complex Chronic Kidney Disease-Mineral and Bone Disorders.

    PubMed

    Bover, Jordi; Ureña, Pablo; Aguilar, Armando; Mazzaferro, Sandro; Benito, Silvia; López-Báez, Víctor; Ramos, Alejandra; daSilva, Iara; Cozzolino, Mario

    2018-02-14

    Alkaline phosphatases (APs) remove the phosphate (dephosphorylation) needed in multiple metabolic processes (from many molecules such as proteins, nucleotides, or pyrophosphate). Therefore, APs are important for bone mineralization but paradoxically they can also be deleterious for other processes, such as vascular calcification and the increasingly known cross-talk between bone and vessels. A proper balance between beneficial and harmful activities is further complicated in the context of chronic kidney disease (CKD). In this narrative review, we will briefly update the complexity of the enzyme, including its different isoforms such as the bone-specific alkaline phosphatase or the most recently discovered B1x. We will also analyze the correlations and potential discrepancies with parathyroid hormone and bone turnover and, most importantly, the valuable recent associations of AP's with cardiovascular disease and/or vascular calcification, and survival. Finally, a basic knowledge of the synthetic and degradation pathways of APs promises to open new therapeutic strategies for the treatment of the CKD-Mineral and Bone Disorder (CKD-MBD) in the near future, as well as for other processes such as sepsis, acute kidney injury, inflammation, endothelial dysfunction, metabolic syndrome or, in diabetes, cardiovascular complications. However, no studies have been done using APs as a primary therapeutic target for clinical outcomes, and therefore, AP's levels cannot yet be used alone as an isolated primary target in the treatment of CKD-MBD. Nonetheless, its diagnostic and prognostic potential should be underlined.

  8. The Complexity of Clinical Huntington's Disease: Developments in Molecular Genetics, Neuropathology and Neuroimaging Biomarkers.

    PubMed

    Tippett, Lynette J; Waldvogel, Henry J; Snell, Russell G; Vonsattel, Jean-Paul; Young, Anne B; Faull, Richard L M

    2017-01-01

    Huntington's disease (HD) is an autosomal dominant neurodegenerative disorder characterised by extensive neuronal loss in the striatum and cerebral cortex, and a triad of clinical symptoms affecting motor, cognitive/behavioural and mood functioning. The mutation causing HD is an expansion of a CAG tract in exon 1 of the HTT gene. This chapter provides a multifaceted overview of the clinical complexity of HD. We explore recent directions in molecular genetics including the identification of loci that are genetic modifiers of HD that could potentially reveal therapeutic targets beyond the HTT gene transcript and protein. The variability of clinical symptomatology in HD is considered alongside recent findings of variability in cellular and neurochemical changes in the striatum and cerebral cortex in human brain. We review evidence from structural neuroimaging methods of progressive changes of striatum, cerebral cortex and white matter in pre-symptomatic and symptomatic HD, with a particular focus on the potential identification of neuroimaging biomarkers that could be used to test promising disease-specific and modifying treatments. Finally we provide an overview of completed clinical trials in HD and future therapeutic developments.

  9. Modeling ebola virus disease transmissions with reservoir in a complex virus life ecology.

    PubMed

    Berge, Tsanou; Bowong, Samuel; Lubuma, Jean; Manyombe, Martin Luther Mann

    2018-02-01

    We propose a new deterministic mathematical model for the transmission dynamics of Ebola Virus Disease (EVD) in a complex Ebola virus life ecology. Our model captures as much as possible the features and patterns of the disease evolution as a three cycle transmission process in the two ways below. Firstly it involves the synergy between the epizootic phase (during which the disease circulates periodically amongst non-human primates populations and decimates them), the enzootic phase (during which the disease always remains in fruit bats population) and the epidemic phase (during which the EVD threatens and decimates human populations). Secondly it takes into account the well-known, the probable/suspected and the hypothetical transmission mechanisms (including direct and indirect routes of contamination) between and within the three different types of populations consisting of humans, animals and fruit bats. The reproduction number R0 for the full model with the environmental contamination is derived and the global asymptotic stability of the disease free equilibrium is established when R0andlt;1. It is conjectured that there exists a unique globally asymptotically stable endemic equilibrium for the full model when R0andgt;1. The role of a contaminated environment is assessed by comparing the human infected component for the sub-model without the environment with that of the full model. Similarly, the sub-model without animals on the one hand and the sub-model without bats on the other hand are studied. It is shown that bats influence more the dynamics of EVD than the animals. Global sensitivity analysis shows that the effective contact rate between humans and fruit bats and the mortality rate for bats are the most influential parameters on the latent and infected human individuals. Numerical simulations, apart from supporting the theoretical results and the existence of a unique globally asymptotically stable endemic equilibrium for the full model, suggest further

  10. Caudal thoracic air sac cannulation in zebra finches for isoflurane anesthesia.

    PubMed

    Nilson, Paige Crystal; Teramitsu, Ikuko; White, Stephanie Ann

    2005-04-30

    Small songbirds such as the zebra finch are commonly used for studies on the neural mechanisms that underlie vocal learning. For these studies, survival surgeries are often performed that involve animal anesthesia and stereotaxic stabilization for localization of specific brain regions. Here we describe air sac cannulation as a novel method for delivering isoflurane gas to zebra finches for anesthesia during neurosurgery. Advantages of this method include that it leaves the bird's head free for stereotaxic targeting and does not interfere with the beak clamps that are often used to position and stabilize the head. It additionally allows for the use of the inhalant anesthetic, isoflurane, which is an appealing alternative to injectable anesthetics because it provides fast, minimally stressful induction, and low subject and personnel toxicity. The use of isoflurane also prevents overdosing and lengthy postoperative recovery times.

  11. Biomechanics of predator-prey arms race in lion, zebra, cheetah and impala

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wilson, Alan M.; Hubel, Tatjana Y.; Wilshin, Simon D.; Lowe, John C.; Lorenc, Maja; Dewhirst, Oliver P.; Bartlam-Brooks, Hattie L. A.; Diack, Rebecca; Bennitt, Emily; Golabek, Krystyna A.; Woledge, Roger C.; McNutt, J. Weldon; Curtin, Nancy A.; West, Timothy G.

    2018-02-01

    The fastest and most manoeuvrable terrestrial animals are found in savannah habitats, where predators chase and capture running prey. Hunt outcome and success rate are critical to survival, so both predator and prey should evolve to be faster and/or more manoeuvrable. Here we compare locomotor characteristics in two pursuit predator-prey pairs, lion-zebra and cheetah-impala, in their natural savannah habitat in Botswana. We show that although cheetahs and impalas were universally more athletic than lions and zebras in terms of speed, acceleration and turning, within each predator-prey pair, the predators had 20% higher muscle fibre power than prey, 37% greater acceleration and 72% greater deceleration capacity than their prey. We simulated hunt dynamics with these data and showed that hunts at lower speeds enable prey to use their maximum manoeuvring capacity and favour prey survival, and that the predator needs to be more athletic than its prey to sustain a viable success rate.

  12. FoxP2 isoforms delineate spatiotemporal transcriptional networks for vocal learning in the zebra finch

    PubMed Central

    Day, Nancy F; Kimball, Todd Haswell; Aamodt, Caitlin M; Heston, Jonathan B; Hilliard, Austin T; Xiao, Xinshu; White, Stephanie A

    2018-01-01

    Human speech is one of the few examples of vocal learning among mammals yet ~half of avian species exhibit this ability. Its neurogenetic basis is largely unknown beyond a shared requirement for FoxP2 in both humans and zebra finches. We manipulated FoxP2 isoforms in Area X, a song-specific region of the avian striatopallidum analogous to human anterior striatum, during a critical period for song development. We delineate, for the first time, unique contributions of each isoform to vocal learning. Weighted gene coexpression network analysis of RNA-seq data revealed gene modules correlated to singing, learning, or vocal variability. Coexpression related to singing was found in juvenile and adult Area X whereas coexpression correlated to learning was unique to juveniles. The confluence of learning and singing coexpression in juvenile Area X may underscore molecular processes that drive vocal learning in young zebra finches and, by analogy, humans. PMID:29360038

  13. Biomechanics of predator-prey arms race in lion, zebra, cheetah and impala.

    PubMed

    Wilson, Alan M; Hubel, Tatjana Y; Wilshin, Simon D; Lowe, John C; Lorenc, Maja; Dewhirst, Oliver P; Bartlam-Brooks, Hattie L A; Diack, Rebecca; Bennitt, Emily; Golabek, Krystyna A; Woledge, Roger C; McNutt, J Weldon; Curtin, Nancy A; West, Timothy G

    2018-02-08

    The fastest and most manoeuvrable terrestrial animals are found in savannah habitats, where predators chase and capture running prey. Hunt outcome and success rate are critical to survival, so both predator and prey should evolve to be faster and/or more manoeuvrable. Here we compare locomotor characteristics in two pursuit predator-prey pairs, lion-zebra and cheetah-impala, in their natural savannah habitat in Botswana. We show that although cheetahs and impalas were universally more athletic than lions and zebras in terms of speed, acceleration and turning, within each predator-prey pair, the predators had 20% higher muscle fibre power than prey, 37% greater acceleration and 72% greater deceleration capacity than their prey. We simulated hunt dynamics with these data and showed that hunts at lower speeds enable prey to use their maximum manoeuvring capacity and favour prey survival, and that the predator needs to be more athletic than its prey to sustain a viable success rate.

  14. Ammonium detection by formation of colored zebra-bands in a detecting tube.

    PubMed

    Hori, Tatsuaki; Niki, Keizou; Kiso, Yoshiaki; Oguchi, Tatsuo; Kamimoto, Yuki; Yamada, Toshiro; Nagai, Masahiro

    2010-06-15

    Ammonium ion was colorized by means of a diazo coupling reaction with 2-phenylphenol, where the color development reaction was conducted within 3min by using boric acid as a catalyst. The resulting colored solution (0.5ml) was supplied by suction to a detecting tube consisting of a nonwoven fabric test strip (2mm wide, 1mm thick, 150mm long) impregnated with benzylcetyldimethylammonium chloride in a stripe pattern and enclosed in a heat-shrinkable tube. When the colored solution was supplied to the detecting tube, blue zebra-bands formed, and the ammonium concentration was determined by counting the number of zebra-bands. The detection range was 1-20mg-Nl(-1). Ammonium ion in actual domestic wastewater samples was successfully detected by means of this method.

  15. Comparative morphology of zebra (Dreissena polymorpha) and quagga (Dreissena bugensis) mussel sperm: Light and electron microscopy

    Walker, G.K.; Black, M.G.; Edwards, C.A.

    1996-01-01

    Adult zebra (Dreissena polymorpha) and quagga (Dreissena bugensis) mussels were induced to release large quantities of live spermatozoa by the administration of 5-hydroxytryptamine (serotonin). Sperm were photographed alive using phase-contrast microscopy and were fixed subsequently with glutaraldehyde followed by osmium tetroxide for eventual examination by transmission or scanning electron microscopy. The sperm of both genera are of the ect-aquasperm type. Their overall dimensions and shape allow for easy discrimination at the light and scanning electron microscopy level. Transmission electron microscopy of the cells reveals a barrel-shaped nucleus in zebra mussel sperm and an elongated nucleus in quagga mussel sperm. In both species, an acrosome is cradled in a nuclear fossa. The ultrastructure of the acrosome and axial body, however, is distinctive for each species. The structures of the midpiece are shown, including a unique mitochondrial "skirt" that includes densely packed parallel cristae and extends in a narrow sheet from the mitochondria.

  16. Combined electric and acoustic hearing performance with Zebra® speech processor: speech reception, place, and temporal coding evaluation.

    PubMed

    Vaerenberg, Bart; Péan, Vincent; Lesbros, Guillaume; De Ceulaer, Geert; Schauwers, Karen; Daemers, Kristin; Gnansia, Dan; Govaerts, Paul J

    2013-06-01

    To assess the auditory performance of Digisonic(®) cochlear implant users with electric stimulation (ES) and electro-acoustic stimulation (EAS) with special attention to the processing of low-frequency temporal fine structure. Six patients implanted with a Digisonic(®) SP implant and showing low-frequency residual hearing were fitted with the Zebra(®) speech processor providing both electric and acoustic stimulation. Assessment consisted of monosyllabic speech identification tests in quiet and in noise at different presentation levels, and a pitch discrimination task using harmonic and disharmonic intonating complex sounds ( Vaerenberg et al., 2011 ). These tests investigate place and time coding through pitch discrimination. All tasks were performed with ES only and with EAS. Speech results in noise showed significant improvement with EAS when compared to ES. Whereas EAS did not yield better results in the harmonic intonation test, the improvements in the disharmonic intonation test were remarkable, suggesting better coding of pitch cues requiring phase locking. These results suggest that patients with residual hearing in the low-frequency range still have good phase-locking capacities, allowing them to process fine temporal information. ES relies mainly on place coding but provides poor low-frequency temporal coding, whereas EAS also provides temporal coding in the low-frequency range. Patients with residual phase-locking capacities can make use of these cues.

  17. Singing with reduced air sac volume causes uniform decrease in airflow and sound amplitude in the zebra finch.

    PubMed

    Plummer, Emily Megan; Goller, Franz

    2008-01-01

    Song of the zebra finch (Taeniopygia guttata) is a complex temporal sequence generated by a drastic change to the regular oscillations of the normal respiratory pattern. It is not known how respiratory functions, such as supply of air volume and gas exchange, are controlled during song. To understand the integration between respiration and song, we manipulated respiration during song by injecting inert dental medium into the air sacs. Increased respiratory rate after injections indicates that the reduction of air affected quiet respiration and that birds compensated for the reduced air volume. During song, air sac pressure, tracheal airflow and sound amplitude decreased substantially with each injection. This decrease was consistently present during each expiratory pulse of the song motif irrespective of the air volume used. Few changes to the temporal pattern of song were noted, such as the increased duration of a minibreath in one bird and the decrease in duration of a long syllable in another bird. Despite the drastic reduction in air sac pressure, airflow and sound amplitude, no increase in abdominal muscle activity was seen. This suggests that during song, birds do not compensate for the reduced physiological or acoustic parameters. Neither somatosensory nor auditory feedback mechanisms appear to effect a correction in expiratory effort to compensate for reduced air sac pressure and sound amplitude.

  18. An experimental assessment of the imaging quality of the low energy gamma-ray telescope ZEBRA

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Butler, R. C.; Caroli, E.; Dicocco, G.; Natalucci, L.; Spada, G.; Spizzichino, A.; Stephen, J. B.; Carter, J. N.; Charalambous, P. M.; Dean, A. J.

    1985-01-01

    One gamma-ray detection plane of the ZEBRA telescope, consisting of nine position sensitive scintillation crystal bars designed to operate over the spectral range 0.2 to 10 MeV, has been constructed in the laboratory. A series of experimental images has been generated using a scaled down flight pattern mask in conjunction with a diverging gamma-ray beam. Point and extended sources have been imaged in order to assess quantitatively the performance of the system.

  19. Same-sex partner preference in zebra finches: pairing flexibility and choice.

    PubMed

    Tomaszycki, Michelle L; Zatirka, Brendon P

    2014-11-01

    This study examined flexibility and choice in same-sex pair-bonding behavior in adult zebra finches (Taeniopygia guttata). Zebra finches form life-long monogamous relationships and extra pair behavior is very low, making them an ideal species in which to study same-sex pairing. We examined same-sex behaviors using both semi-naturalistic choice paradigms and skewed sex ratios. In the first experiment, we allowed zebra finches to pair in aviaries with equal sex ratios as part of multiple experiments. On average, 6.4% (N = 78) of unmanipulated pairs were same-sex: all but one was female-female. In a second experiment, we identified pairs from same-sex cages and selected 20 total same-sex pairs (10 of each sex). We then gave pairs a chance to court and pair with members of the opposite sex and observed their behavior for three days. Females did not retain their partner, but most paired with males. In contrast, some males did retain their partner. Similarly, females were more likely to engage in pairing behaviors with males than with their partners or other females whereas males were equally likely to engage in same-sex and opposite-sex pairing behaviors. These findings suggest that same-sex partnerships in zebra finches can be facultative, based on the sex ratio of the group in which they live, but can also be a choice, when opportunities to pair with opposite-sex individuals are possible. Furthermore, it is possible that females are more flexible in this choice of same-sex partnerships than are males.

  20. Pharyngeal teeth of the freshwater drum (Aplodinotus grunniens) a predator of the zebra mussel (Dreissena polymorpha)

    French, John R. P.

    1997-01-01

    The morphology of pharyngeal teeth of freshwater drum (Aplodinotus grunniens) was studied to determine changes that occur during growth of drum that may relate to consumption of zebra mussel (Dreissena polymorpha) by larger fish. Pharyngeal teeth were of three types. Cardiform teeth were replaced by villiform teeth, which were replaced by molariform teeth as the size class of drum increased. Molariform teeth comprised over 85% of total surface area of dentition in fish 265 mm long.

  1. Quality of public information matters in mate-choice copying in female zebra finches.

    PubMed

    Kniel, Nina; Schmitz, Jennifer; Witte, Klaudia

    2015-01-01

    Mate-choice copying is a form of social learning in which an individual gains information about potential mates by observing conspecifics. However, it is still unknown what kind of information drives the decision of an individual to copy the mate choice of others. Among zebra finches (Taeniopygia guttata castanotis), only females (not males) copy the mate choice of others. We tested female zebra finches in a binary choice test where they, first, could choose between two males of different phenotypes: one unadorned male and one male artificially adorned with a red feather on the forehead. After this mate-choice test, females could observe a single unadorned male and a pair of zebra finches, i.e. a wild-type female and her adorned mate. Pair interactions were either restricted to acoustic and visual communication (clear glass screen between pair mates) or acoustic communication alone (opaque screen between pair mates). After the observation period, females could again choose between new males of the two phenotypes in a second mate-choice test. In experiments with a clear glass screen, time spent with the respective males changed between the two mate-choice tests, and females preferred adorned over unadorned males during the second mate-choice test. In experiments with an opaque screen, time spent with the respective males did not change between the two mate-choice tests, although females lost an initial preference for unadorned males. Our results demonstrate that the quality of the received public information (visual and acoustic interaction of the observed pair) influences mate-choice copying in female zebra finches.

  2. [Resection of the recurrent third branchial fistula under gastroscope with assistance of yellow zebra guidewire].

    PubMed

    Feng, X; Huang, Z C; Tao, F; Ou, X L

    2016-02-01

    To investigate clinical aspects and a new operative method for resecting third branchial fistula. The clinical aspects of 4 patients with third branchial fistula were retrospectively analyzed. It is difficult to locate the inner orifice of fistula through neck path due to tiny diameter of inner orifice. The inner orifice could be found and closed effectively by inserting yellow zebra guidewire from sinus piriformis with gastroscope. The mucous membrane of sinus piriformis could not be damaged due to the soft pointed end of yellow zebra guidewire. 4 cases were treated successfully without pharyngeal fistula or recurrent laryngeal nerve injury. No recurrent infections were found in all cases with follows-up of 6-66 months. Ineffectiveness of radiography with meglumine diatrizoate or oral administration of methylene blue before operation indicates tiny fistula. In this case, resection of third branchial fistula with the assistance of gastroscope and yellow zebra guidewire under general anesthesia can be performed. This innovative method of diagnosis and treatment is worth of application clinically.

  3. Zebra Finch Mates Use Their Forebrain Song System in Unlearned Call Communication

    PubMed Central

    Ter Maat, Andries; Trost, Lisa; Sagunsky, Hannes; Seltmann, Susanne; Gahr, Manfred

    2014-01-01

    Unlearned calls are produced by all birds whereas learned songs are only found in three avian taxa, most notably in songbirds. The neural basis for song learning and production is formed by interconnected song nuclei: the song control system. In addition to song, zebra finches produce large numbers of soft, unlearned calls, among which “stack” calls are uttered frequently. To determine unequivocally the calls produced by each member of a group, we mounted miniature wireless microphones on each zebra finch. We find that group living paired males and females communicate using bilateral stack calling. To investigate the role of the song control system in call-based male female communication, we recorded the electrical activity in a premotor nucleus of the song control system in freely behaving male birds. The unique combination of acoustic monitoring together with wireless brain recording of individual zebra finches in groups shows that the neuronal activity of the song system correlates with the production of unlearned stack calls. The results suggest that the song system evolved from a brain circuit controlling simple unlearned calls to a system capable of producing acoustically rich, learned vocalizations. PMID:25313846

  4. Batteries: An Advanced Na-FeCl2 ZEBRA Battery for Stationary Energy Storage Application

    SciT

    Li, Guosheng; Lu, Xiaochuan; Kim, Jin Yong

    2015-06-17

    Sodium-metal chloride batteries, ZEBRA, are considered as one of the most important electrochemical devices for stationary energy storage applications because of its advantages of good cycle life, safety, and reliability. However, sodium-nickel chloride (Na-NiCl2) batteries, the most promising redox chemistry in ZEBRA batteries, still face great challenges for the practical application due to its inevitable feature of using Ni cathode (high materials cost). In this work, a novel intermediate-temperature sodium-iron chloride (Na-FeCl2) battery using a molten sodium anode and Fe cathode is proposed and demonstrated. The first use of unique sulfur-based additives in Fe cathode enables Na-FeCl2 batteries can bemore » assembled in the discharged state and operated at intermediate-temperature (<200°C). The results in this work demonstrate that intermediate-temperature Na-FeCl2 battery technology could be a propitious solution for ZEBRA battery technologies by replacing the traditional Na-NiCl2 chemistry.« less

  5. Immediate early gene expression following exposure to acoustic and visual components of courtship in zebra finches.

    PubMed

    Avey, Marc T; Phillmore, Leslie S; MacDougall-Shackleton, Scott A

    2005-12-07

    Sensory driven immediate early gene expression (IEG) has been a key tool to explore auditory perceptual areas in the avian brain. Most work on IEG expression in songbirds such as zebra finches has focused on playback of acoustic stimuli and its effect on auditory processing areas such as caudal medial mesopallium (CMM) caudal medial nidopallium (NCM). However, in a natural setting, the courtship displays of songbirds (including zebra finches) include visual as well as acoustic components. To determine whether the visual stimulus of a courting male modifies song-induced expression of the IEG ZENK in the auditory forebrain we exposed male and female zebra finches to acoustic (song) and visual (dancing) components of courtship. Birds were played digital movies with either combined audio and video, audio only, video only, or neither audio nor video (control). We found significantly increased levels of Zenk response in the auditory region CMM in the two treatment groups exposed to acoustic stimuli compared to the control group. The video only group had an intermediate response, suggesting potential effect of visual input on activity in these auditory brain regions. Finally, we unexpectedly found a lateralization of Zenk response that was independent of sex, brain region, or treatment condition, such that Zenk immunoreactivity was consistently higher in the left hemisphere than in the right and the majority of individual birds were left-hemisphere dominant.

  6. Evaluation of Best Practices for the Euthanasia of Zebra Finches (Taeniopygia guttata)

    PubMed Central

    Scott, Kathleen E; Bracchi, Lauren A; Lieberman, Mia T; Hill, Nichola J; Caron, Tyler J; Patterson, Mary M

    2017-01-01

    Although zebra finches (Taeniopygia guttata) have been used in biomedical research for many years, no published reports are available about euthanizing these small birds. In this study, we compared 5 methods for zebra finch euthanasia: sodium pentobarbital (NaP) given intracoelomically with physical restraint but no anesthesia; isoflurane anesthesia followed by intracoelomic injection of NaP; and CO2 asphyxiation at 20%, 40%, and 80% chamber displacement rates (percentage of chamber volume per minute). Birds undergoing euthanasia were videorecorded and scored by 2 observers for behaviors potentially related to discomfort or distress. Time to recumbency and time until respiratory arrest (RA) were also assessed. RA was achieved faster by using NaP in a conscious bird compared to using isoflurane anesthesia followed by NaP; however, neither method caused behaviors that might affect animal welfare, such as open-mouth breathing, to any appreciable extent. Among the CO2 treatment groups, there was an inverse correlation between the chamber displacement rate used and the duration of open-mouth breathing, onset of head retroflexion, and time to RA. The results demonstrate that the intracoelomic administration of NaP in an awake, restrained zebra finch is a rapid and effective method of euthanasia. If CO2 is used to euthanize these birds, a high displacement rate (for example, 80%) will minimize the duration of the procedure and associated behaviors. PMID:29256376

  7. Evaluation of Best Practices for the Euthanasia of Zebra Finches (Taeniopygia guttata).

    PubMed

    Scott, Kathleen E; Bracchi, Lauren A; Lieberman, Mia T; Hill, Nichola J; Caron, Tyler J; Patterson, Mary M

    2017-11-01

    Although zebra finches (Taeniopygia guttata) have been used in biomedical research for many years, no published reports are available about euthanizing these small birds. In this study, we compared 5 methods for zebra finch euthanasia: sodium pentobarbital (NaP) given intracoelomically with physical restraint but no anesthesia; isoflurane anesthesia followed by intracoelomic injection of NaP; and CO2 asphyxiation at 20%, 40%, and 80% chamber displacement rates (percentage of chamber volume per minute). Birds undergoing euthanasia were videorecorded and scored by 2 observers for behaviors potentially related to discomfort or distress. Time to recumbency and time until respiratory arrest (RA) were also assessed. RA was achieved faster by using NaP in a conscious bird compared to using isoflurane anesthesia followed by NaP; however, neither method caused behaviors that might affect animal welfare, such as open-mouth breathing, to any appreciable extent. Among the CO2 treatment groups, there was an inverse correlation between the chamber displacement rate used and the duration of open-mouth breathing, onset of head retroflexion, and time to RA. The results demonstrate that the intracoelomic administration of NaP in an awake, restrained zebra finch is a rapid and effective method of euthanasia. If CO2 is used to euthanize these birds, a high displacement rate (for example, 80%) will minimize the duration of the procedure and associated behaviors.

  8. Comparative biology of zebra mussels in Europe and North America: an overview

    Mackie, Gerald L.; Schloesser, Don W.

    1996-01-01

    SYNOPSIS. Since the discovery of the zebra mussel, Dreissena polymorpha, in the Great Lakes in 1988 comparisons have been made with mussel populations in Europe and the former Soviet Union. These comparisons include: Population dynamics, growth and mortality rates, ecological tolerances and requirements, dispersal rates and patterns, and ecological impacts. North American studies, mostly on the zebra mussel and a few on a second introduced species, the quagga mussel, Dreissena bugensis, have revealed some similarities and some differences. To date it appears that North American populations of zebra mussels are similar to European populations in their basic biological characteristics, population growth and mortality rates, and dispersal mechanisms and rates. Relative to European populations differences have been demonstrated for: (1) individual growth rates; (2) life spans; (3) calcium and pH tolerances and requirements; (4) potential distribution limits; and (5) population densities of veligers and adults. In addition, studies on the occurrence of the two dreissenid species in the Great Lakes are showing differences in their modes of life, depth distributions, and growth rates. As both species spread throughout North America, comparisons between species and waterbodies will enhance our ability to more effectively control these troublesome species.

  9. Zebra finch mates use their forebrain song system in unlearned call communication.

    PubMed

    Ter Maat, Andries; Trost, Lisa; Sagunsky, Hannes; Seltmann, Susanne; Gahr, Manfred

    2014-01-01

    Unlearned calls are produced by all birds whereas learned songs are only found in three avian taxa, most notably in songbirds. The neural basis for song learning and production is formed by interconnected song nuclei: the song control system. In addition to song, zebra finches produce large numbers of soft, unlearned calls, among which "stack" calls are uttered frequently. To determine unequivocally the calls produced by each member of a group, we mounted miniature wireless microphones on each zebra finch. We find that group living paired males and females communicate using bilateral stack calling. To investigate the role of the song control system in call-based male female communication, we recorded the electrical activity in a premotor nucleus of the song control system in freely behaving male birds. The unique combination of acoustic monitoring together with wireless brain recording of individual zebra finches in groups shows that the neuronal activity of the song system correlates with the production of unlearned stack calls. The results suggest that the song system evolved from a brain circuit controlling simple unlearned calls to a system capable of producing acoustically rich, learned vocalizations.

  10. Modulation of antioxidant defense and immune response in zebra fish (Danio rerio) using dietary sodium propionate.

    PubMed

    Safari, Roghieh; Hoseinifar, Seyed Hossein; Kavandi, Morteza

    2016-12-01

    The present study explores the effect of dietary sodium propionate on mucosal immune response and expression of antioxidant enzyme genes in zebra fish (Danio rerio). Six hundred healthy zebra fish (0.42 ± 0.06 g) supplied, randomly stocked in 12 aquariums and fed on basal diets supplemented with different levels of sodium propionate [0 (control), 5, 10 and 20 g kg -1 ] for 8 weeks. At the end of the feeding trial, mucosal immune parameters (TNF-α, IL-1β, Lyz), antioxidant enzyme (SOD, CAT) as well as heat shock protein 70 (HSP70) gene expression were measured. The results revealed feeding on sodium propionate significantly up-regulated inflammatory response genes (TNF-α, IL-1β, Lyz) in a dose-dependent manner (P < 0.05). However, antioxidant enzyme genes significantly down-regulated in the treated group compared with control (P < 0.05). Also, HSP70 gene expression was higher in the liver of fish fed the basal diet and deceased with elevation of sodium propionate levels in the diet. These results showed beneficial effects of dietary sodium propionate on mucosal immune response as well as the antioxidant defense of zebra fish.

  11. Primary structure of pancreatic polypeptide from four species of Perissodactyla (Przewalski's horse, zebra, rhino, tapir).

    PubMed

    Henry, J S; Lance, V A; Conlon, J M

    1991-12-01

    Pancreatic polypeptide (PP) has been purified from extracts of the pancreas of four species of odd-toed ungulates (Perissodactyla): Przewalski's horse, mountain zebra, white rhinoceros, and mountain tapir. The amino acid sequence of Przewalski's horse pancreatic polypeptide was established as Ala-Pro-Met-Glu-Pro-Val-Tyr-Pro-Gly-Asp10-Asn- Ala-Thr-Pro-Glu-Gln-Met-Ala-Gln-Tyr20-Ala-Ala-Glu-Leu-Arg-Arg-Tyr- Ile-Asn-Met30 - Leu-Thr-Arg-Pro-Arg-Tyr.NH2. Zebra PP was identical to Przewalski's horse PP, rhinoceros PP contained three substitutions relative to the horse (Ser for Ala1, Leu for Met3, and Glu for Gln16), and tapir PP contained one substitution relative to the horse (Leu for Met3). On the basis of morphological characteristics and the fossil record, the rhinocerotids are classified with the tapirids in the suborder Ceratomorpha, whereas the horse and zebra belong to a separate suborder, Hippomorpha. On the basis of structural similarity of the PP molecules, however, it would appear that the tapir is more closely related to the horse than to the rhinoceros. These observations provide a further example of the need for extreme caution when inferring taxonomic or phylogenetic relationships between species from the structures of homologous peptides.

  12. Comparative Cytogenetics between Two Important Songbird, Models: The Zebra Finch and the Canary

    PubMed Central

    dos Santos, Michelly da Silva; Kretschmer, Rafael; Frankl-Vilches, Carolina; Bakker, Antje; Gahr, Manfred; O´Brien, Patricia C. M.; Ferguson-Smith, Malcolm A.

    2017-01-01

    Songbird species (order Passeriformes, suborder Oscines) are important models in various experimental fields spanning behavioural genomics to neurobiology. Although the genomes of some songbird species were sequenced recently, the chromosomal organization of these species is mostly unknown. Here we focused on the two most studied songbird species in neuroscience, the zebra finch (Taeniopygia guttata) and the canary (Serinus canaria). In order to clarify these issues and also to integrate chromosome data with their assembled genomes, we used classical and molecular cytogenetics in both zebra finch and canary to define their chromosomal homology, localization of heterochromatic blocks and distribution of rDNA clusters. We confirmed the same diploid number (2n = 80) in both species, as previously reported. FISH experiments confirmed the occurrence of multiple paracentric and pericentric inversions previously found in other species of Passeriformes, providing a cytogenetic signature for this order, and corroborating data from in silico analyses. Additionally, compared to other Passeriformes, we detected differences in the zebra finch karyotype concerning the morphology of some chromosomes, in the distribution of 5S rDNA clusters, and an inversion in chromosome 1. PMID:28129381

  13. Great Lakes clams find refuge from zebra mussels in restored, lake-connected marsh (Ohio)

    Nichols, S. Jerrine; Wilcox, Douglas A.

    2004-01-01

    Since the early 1990s, more than 95 percent of the freshwater clams once found in Lake Erie have died due to the exotic zebara mussel (Dreissena polymorpha). Zebra mussels attach themselves to native clams in large numbers, impeding the ability of the clams to eat and burrow. However, in 1996, we discovered a population of native clams in Metzger Marsh in western Lake Erie (about 50 miles [80 km] east of Toledo) that were thriving despite the longtime presence of zebra mussel in surrounding waters. At that time, Metzger Marsh was undergoing extensive restoration, including construction of a dike to replace the eroded barrier beach and of a water-control structure to maintain hydrologic connections with the lake (Wilcox and Whillans 1999). The restoration plan called for a drawdown of water levels to promote plant growth from the seedbank -- a process that would also destroy most of the clam population. State and federal resource managers recommended removing as many clams as possible to a site that was isolated from zebra mussels, and then returning them to the marsh after it was restored. We removed about 7,000 native clams in 1996 and moved them back to Metzger Marsh in 1999.

  14. An examination of the effect of aerosolized permanone insecticide on zebra finch susceptibility to West Nile virus

    Jankowski, Mark D.; Murray, E. Moore; Hofmeister, Erik K.

    2017-01-01

    West Nile virus is primarily maintained cryptically primarily in avian (Passerine) populations where it is transmitted by Culex spp. mosquitoes. Mosquito control measures currently include physical activities to reduce mosquito breeding sites, the application of mosquito larvicides, or aerosolized insecticides to kill adults (adulticides) when arboviral diseases such as West Nile virus (WNV) or Zika virus are detected in mosquito populations. Organochlorine, organohosphorus, carbamate and pyrethroid insecticides are often used. Previous work suggests an effect of pyrethroids on the immune system in a variety of vertebrates. We examined the effects of exposure to aerosolized Permanone® 30:30 insecticide (permethrin and piperonyl butoxide in soy oil vehicle) at ∼103−106x potential environmental concentrations on the response of captive zebra finches (Taeniopygia guttata) to experimental challenge with WNV. Compared to vehicle control birds, WNV outcome was unchanged (65% of birds produced a viremia) in the ‘low’ exposure (9.52 mg/m3±3.13 SD permethrin) group, but reduced in the ‘high’ exposure (mean 376.5 mg/m3±27.9 SD permethrin) group (30% were viremic) (p < 0.05). After clearing WNV infection, birds treated with Permanone regained less body mass than vehicle treated birds (p < 0.001). Our study suggests that exposure to aerosolized Permanone insecticide at levels exceeding typical application rates has the potential to not change or mildly enhance a bird's resistance to WNV.

  15. The effect of the physical activity on polymorphic premature ventricular complexes in chronic kidney disease.

    PubMed

    Kiuchi, Márcio G; Chen, Shaojie

    2017-06-01

    Polymorphic premature ventricular complexes (PVCs) are very common, appearing most frequently in patients with hypertension, obesity, sleep apnea, and structural heart disease. Sympathetic hyperactivity plays a critical role in the development, maintenance, and aggravation of ventricular arrhythmias. Endurance exercise training clearly lowers sympathetic activity in sympatho-excitatory disease states and may be tolerated by patients with chronic kidney disease (CKD). We assessed 40 CKD patients with hypertension with polymorphic PVCs. Patients underwent a complete medical history and physical examination. We evaluated the effectiveness of β blocker only or β blocker + exercise during 12 months of follow-up regarding the changes of the numbers of PVCs and mean heart rate (HR) by 24-hour-Holter. We observed in the β blocker group a significant decrease in the number of polymorphic PVCs from baseline 36,515 ± 3,518 to 3, 6, 9 and 12 months of follow-up, 28,314 ± 2,938, 23,709 ± 1,846, 22,564 ± 1,673, and 22,725 ± 1,415, respectively ( P < 0.001). In the β blocker + exercise group a significant decrease in the number of polymorphic PVCs also occurred from baseline 36,091 ± 3,327 to 3, 6, 9 and 12 months of follow-up, 29,252 ± 3,211, 20,948 ± 2,386, 14,238 ± 3,338, and 6,225 ± 2,319, respectively ( P < 0.001). Comparisons between the two groups at the same time point showed differences from the sixth month onwards: the 6th (Δ = -2,761, P = 0.045), 9th (Δ = -8,325, P < 0.001) and 12th (Δ = -16,500, P < 0.001) months. There was an improvement during the 12 months of follow-up vs. baseline, after the β blocker or β blocker + exercise in mean 24-hour HR Holter monitoring, creatinine values, eGFR, and ACR. Polymorphic PVCs may be modifiable by physical activity in CKD patients with hypertension without structural heart disease.

  16. Creutzfeldt-Jakob Disease-Like Periodic Sharp Wave Complexes in Voltage-Gated Potassium Channel-Complex Antibodies Encephalitis: A Case Report.

    PubMed

    Savard, Martin; Irani, Sarosh R; Guillemette, Annie; Gosselin-Lefebvre, Stéphanie; Geschwind, Michael; Jansen, Gerard H; Gould, Peter V; Laforce, Robert

    2016-02-01

    Voltage-gated potassium channel-complex antibodies (VGKC-cAbs) encephalitis, a treatable autoantibody encephalopathy, has been previously reported to clinically mimic sporadic Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease. Among available clinical clues to distinguish them, periodic sharp wave complexes, a typical finding in sporadic Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease, have never been reported in association with VGKC-cAbs encephalitis. A 76-year-old man was transferred to a tertiary neurology center with a clinical history of 6-month weight loss, cognitive disturbance, and nonspecific generalized weakness. He had two seizures the month before transfer and then evolved to severe encephalopathy, requiring mechanical ventilation. Periodic sharp wave complexes every 1 to 2 seconds over slowed background were found on EEG, and MRI showed cerebellar and bifrontal cortical T2/FLAIR/DWI hypersignal without restricted diffusion on ADC mapping. Pancorporal positron emission tomography scan was negative. An immunotherapy trial did not improve the patient condition. Therefore, he died after life support withdrawal. Brain autopsy revealed mononuclear neocortex infiltrate without significant spongiosis, and the anti-VGKC test showed a seropositivity of 336 pmol/L (normal, 0-31), 3 month after the patient deceased. This is the first reported case of VGKC-cAbs encephalitis associated with periodic sharp wave complexes on EEG, which further confuse the differential diagnosis with sporadic Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease. However, the cortical DWI hypersignal without restriction seems to remain a way to discriminate these two entities appropriately, when present. These clues are of paramount importance because VGKC-cAbs encephalitis is a treatable disease.

  17. Complex and multi-allelic copy number variation in human disease

    PubMed Central

    McCarroll, Steven A.

    2015-01-01

    Hundreds of copy number variants are complex and multi-allelic, in that they have many structural alleles and have rearranged multiple times in the ancestors who contributed chromosomes to current humans. Not only are the relationships of these multi-allelic CNVs (mCNVs) to phenotypes generally unknown, but many mCNVs have not yet been described at the basic levels—alleles, allele frequencies, structural features—that support genetic investigation. To date, most reported disease associations to these variants have been ascertained through candidate gene studies. However, only a few associations have reached the level of acceptance defined by durable replications in many cohorts. This likely stems from longstanding challenges in making precise molecular measurements of the alleles individuals have at these loci. However, approaches for mCNV analysis are improving quickly, and some of the unique characteristics of mCNVs may assist future association studies. Their various structural alleles are likely to have different magnitudes of effect, creating a natural allelic series of growing phenotypic impact and giving investigators a set of natural predictions and testable hypotheses about the extent to which each allele of an mCNV predisposes to a phenotype. Also, mCNVs’ low-to-modest correlation to individual single-nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) may make it easier to distinguish between mCNVs and nearby SNPs as the drivers of an association signal, and perhaps, make it possible to preliminarily screen candidate loci, or the entire genome, for the many mCNV–disease relationships that remain to be discovered. PMID:26163405

  18. The 'sialo-microbial-dental complex' in oral health and disease.

    PubMed

    Kaidonis, John; Townsend, Grant

    2016-01-01

    Biofilms are naturally found in all wet environments including the oral structures of nearly all species. Human oral biofilms have existed since our earliest ancestors and have evolved symbiotically with the dentition over many millennia within a Palaeolithic, hunter-gatherer setting. Irrespective of the plant-animal ratio, it can be argued that the Palaeolithic diet was essentially acidic, and acted as a selective force for much of the evolution of the stomatognathic system. The relationship between saliva, biofilm and teeth, the 'sialo-microbial-dental complex', provides oral health benefits and offers a different perspective to the old dental paradigm that only associated oral biofilms (plaque) with disease (caries). This new paradigm emphasises that oral biofilms are essential for the 'mineral maintenance' of teeth. Oral biofilms provide physical protection from dietary acid and together with bacterial metabolic acids cause the resting pH of the biofilm to fall below neutral. This is then followed by the re-establishment of a neutral environment by chemical interactions mediated by the saliva within the biofilm. Such pH fluctuations are often responsible for the cyclic demineralisation, then remineralisation of teeth, a process necessary for tooth maturation. However, since the advent of farming and especially since the industrial revolution, the increase in consumption of carbohydrates, refined sugars and acidic drinks has changed the ecology of biofilms. Biofilm biodiversity is significantly reduced together with a proliferation of acidogenic and aciduric organisms, tipping the balance of the 'demin-remin' cycle towards net mineral loss and hence caries. In addition, the consumption of acidic drinks in today's societies has removed the protective nature of the biofilm, leading to erosion. Erosion and caries are 'modern-day' diseases and reflect an imbalance within the oral biofilm resulting in the demineralisation of teeth. Copyright © 2015 The Authors

  19. Modelling real disease dynamics with behaviourally adaptive complex networks. Comment on "Coupled disease-behavior dynamics on complex networks: A review" by Z. Wang et al.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Small, Michael

    2015-12-01

    Mean field compartmental models of disease transmission have been successfully applied to a host of different scenarios, and the Kermack-McKendrick equations are now a staple of mathematical biology text books. In Susceptible-Infected-Removed format these equations provide three coupled first order ordinary differential equations with a very mild nonlinearity and they are very well understood. However, underpinning these equations are two important assumptions: that the population is (a) homogeneous, and (b) well-mixed. These assumptions become closest to being true for diseases infecting a large portion of the population for which inevitable individual effects can be averaged away. Emerging infectious disease (such as, in recent times, SARS, avian influenza, swine flu and ebola) typically does not conform to this scenario. Individual contacts and peculiarities of the transmission network play a vital role in understanding the dynamics of such relatively rare infections - particularly during the early stages of an outbreak.

  20. Homoarginine—A prognostic indicator in adolescents and adults with complex congenital heart disease?

    PubMed Central

    Mueller, Marieke; Meinitzer, Andreas; Maerz, Winfried; Dschietzig, Thomas

    2017-01-01

    Background Homoarginine (hArg) has been shown to be of prognostic value in patients with chronic left heart failure. The present study aims to assess the clinical utility and prognostic value of hArg levels in patients with complex congenital heart disease (CHD). Methods Plasma hArg levels were measured in 143 patients with complex CHD and compared to clinical status, echocardiographic and laboratory parameters as well as the occurrence of adverse cardiac events. Results Median hArg levels were 1.5 μmol/l in CHD patients as compared to 1.70 μmol/l in healthy controls (p = 0.051). Median hArg levels were lowest in patients with Fontan palliation (1.27 μmol/l) and Eisenmenger physiology (0.99 μmol/l) and decreased with the severity of adverse cardiac events with lowest values found in patients prior to death or overt heart failure (0.89 μmol/l). According to ROC analysis, the most important predictors of adverse cardiac events were hArg levels (AUC 0.837, p<0.001, CI 0.726–0.947), NYHA class (AUC 0.800, p<0.001, CI 0.672–0.928) and NT-proBNP levels (AUC 0.780, p<0.001, CI 0.669–0.891). The occurrence of overt heart failure or death due to progressive heart failure were best predicted by NYHA class (AUC 0.945, p<0.001, CI 0.898–0.992), hArg levels (AUC 0.911, p<0.001, CI 0.850–0.971) and NT-proBNP levels (AUC 0.877, p<0.001, CI 0.791–0.962), respectively. Conclusion In patients with complex CHD, hArg levels can predict adverse cardiac events as reliably as or even better than NT-proBNP levels and thus might be of prognostic value in this subset of patients. PMID:28886170

  1. Complex Dynamics in the Basal Ganglia: Health and Disease Beyond the Motor System.

    PubMed

    Andres, Daniela S; Darbin, Olivier

    2018-01-01

    The rate and oscillatory hypotheses are the two main current frameworks of basal ganglia pathophysiology. Both hypotheses have emerged from research on movement disorders sharing similar conceptualizations. These pathological conditions are classified either as hypokinetic or hyperkinetic, and the electrophysiological hallmarks of basal ganglia dysfunction are categorized as prokinetic or antikinetic. Although nonmotor symptoms, including neurobehavioral symptoms, are a key manifestation of basal ganglia dysfunction, they are uncommonly accounted for in these models. In patients with Parkinson's disease, the broad spectrum of motor symptoms and neurobehavioral symptoms challenges the concept that basal ganglia disorders can be classified into two categories. The profile of symptoms of basal ganglia dysfunction is best characterized by a breakdown of information processing, accompanied at an electrophysiological level by complex alterations of spiking activity from basal ganglia neurons. The authors argue that the dynamics of the basal ganglia circuit cannot be fully characterized by linear properties such as the firing rate or oscillatory activity. In fact, the neuronal spiking stream of the basal ganglia circuit is irregular but has temporal structure. In this context, entropy was introduced as a measure of probabilistic irregularity in the temporal organization of neuronal activity of the basal ganglia, giving place to the entropy hypothesis of basal ganglia pathology. Obtaining a quantitative characterization of irregularity of spike trains from basal ganglia neurons is key to elaborating a new framework of basal ganglia pathophysiology.

  2. The adaptation process of mothers raising a child with complex congenital heart disease.

    PubMed

    Ahn, Jeong-Ah; Lee, Sunhee

    2018-01-01

    Mothers of children with congenital heart disease (CHD) tend to be concerned about their child's normal life. The majority of these mothers tend to experience negative psychological problems. In this study, the adaptation process of mothers raising a child with complex CHD was investigated based on the sociocultural context of Korea. The data collection was conducted by in-depth interviews and theoretical sampling was performed until the data were saturated. The collected data were analyzed using continuous theoretical comparisons. The results of the present study showed that the core category in the mothers' adaptation process was 'anxiety regarding the future', and the mothers' adaptation process consisted of the impact phase, standing against phase, and accepting phase. In the impact phase, the participants emotionally fluctuated between 'feelings of abandonment' and 'entertaining hope'. In the standing against phase, participants tended to dedicate everything to child-rearing while being affected by 'being encouraged by support' and 'being frustrated by tasks beyond their limits'. In the accepting phase, the subjects attempted to 'accept the child as is', 'resist hard feelings', and 'share hope'. Health-care providers need to develop programs that include information regarding CHD, how to care for a child with CHD, and effective child-rearing behaviors.

  3. Engineering and control of biological systems: A new way to tackle complex diseases.

    PubMed

    Menolascina, Filippo; Siciliano, Velia; di Bernardo, Diego

    2012-07-16

    The ongoing merge between engineering and biology has contributed to the emerging field of synthetic biology. The defining features of this new discipline are abstraction and standardisation of biological parts, decoupling between parts to prevent undesired cross-talking, and the application of quantitative modelling of synthetic genetic circuits in order to guide their design. Most of the efforts in the field of synthetic biology in the last decade have been devoted to the design and development of functional gene circuits in prokaryotes and unicellular eukaryotes. Researchers have used synthetic biology not only to engineer new functions in the cell, but also to build simpler models of endogenous gene regulatory networks to gain knowledge of the "rules" governing their wiring diagram. However, the need for innovative approaches to study and modify complex signalling and regulatory networks in mammalian cells and multicellular organisms has prompted advances of synthetic biology also in these species, thus contributing to develop innovative ways to tackle human diseases. In this work, we will review the latest progress in synthetic biology and the most significant developments achieved so far, both in unicellular and multicellular organisms, with emphasis on human health. Copyright © 2012 Federation of European Biochemical Societies. Published by Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  4. The epigenomic interface between genome and environment in common complex diseases.

    PubMed

    Bell, Christopher G; Beck, Stephan

    2010-12-01

    The epigenome plays the pivotal role as interface between genome and environment. True genome-wide assessments of epigenetic marks, such as DNA methylation (methylomes) or chromatin modifications (chromatinomes), are now possible, either through high-throughput arrays or increasingly by second-generation DNA sequencing methods. The ability to collect these data at this level of resolution enables us to begin to be able to propose detailed questions, and interrogate this information, with regards to changes that occur due to development, lineage and tissue-specificity, and significantly those caused by environmental influence, such as ageing, stress, diet, hormones or toxins. Common complex traits are under variable levels of genetic influence and additionally epigenetic effect. The detection of pathological epigenetic alterations will reveal additional insights into their aetiology and how possible environmental modulation of this mechanism may occur. Due to the reversibility of these marks, the potential for sequence-specific targeted therapeutics exists. This review surveys recent epigenomic advances and their current and prospective application to the study of common diseases.

  5. Bioassessment of mercury, cadmium, polychlorinated biphenyls, and pesticides in the upper Mississippi river with Zebra mussels (Dreissena polymorpha)

    Cope, W. Gregory; Bartsch, Michelle; Rada, Ronald G.; Balogh, Steven J.; Rupprecht, John E.; Young, R. David; Johnson, D. Kent

    1999-01-01

    Zebra mussels (Dreissena polymorpha) were sampled from artificial substrates deployed from May 30 to October 19, 1995, at 19 locks and dams from Minneapolis, MN, to Muscatine, IA. Analyses of composite tissue samples of zebra mussels (10−20-mm length) revealed accumulation of mercury (Hg), cadmium (Cd), and polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs) during a 143-d exposure period. Concentrations of total Hg ranged from 2.6 to 6.1 ng/g wet weight and methylmercury (CH3Hg) from 1.0 to 3.3 ng/g wet weight. About 50% (range 30−70%) of the mean total Hg in zebra mussels was CH3Hg. Cadmium ranged from 76 to 213 ng/g wet weight. Concentrations of total PCBs (Aroclor 1254) in zebra mussels varied longitudinally (range 1000−7330 ng/g lipid weight), but the composition of PCB congeners (total of 21 measured) was similar throughout the river. Chlordane and dieldrin were the only two pesticides detected of the 15 analyzed. Zebra mussels are sentinels of contaminant bioavailability in the Upper Mississippi River and may be an important link in the trophic transfer of contaminants in the river because of their increasing importance in the diets of certain fish and waterfowl.

  6. Using Digital Images of the Zebra Finch Song System as a Tool to Teach Organizational Effects of Steroid Hormones: A Free Downloadable Module

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Grisham, William; Schottler, Natalie A.; Beck McCauley, Lisa M.; Pham, Anh P.; Ruiz, Maureen L.; Fong, Michelle C.; Cui, Xinran

    2011-01-01

    Zebra finch song behavior is sexually dimorphic: males sing and females do not. The neural system underlying this behavior is sexually dimorphic, and this sex difference is easy to quantify. During development, the zebra finch song system can be altered by steroid hormones, specifically estradiol, which actually masculinizes it. Because of the…

  7. Recognizing and Managing Complexity: Teaching Advanced Programming Concepts and Techniques Using the Zebra Puzzle

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Crabtree, John; Zhang, Xihui

    2015-01-01

    Teaching advanced programming can be a challenge, especially when the students are pursuing different majors with diverse analytical and problem-solving capabilities. The purpose of this paper is to explore the efficacy of using a particular problem as a vehicle for imparting a broad set of programming concepts and problem-solving techniques. We…

  8. Closed genomes and phenotypes of seven Histophilus somni isolates from beef calves with bovine respiratory disease complex

    Background: Histophilus somni is a fastidious gram-negative opportunistic pathogenic Pasteurellacea that affects multiple organ systems and is one of three principle bacterial species contributing to bovine respiratory disease complex (BRDC) in North American feed yard cattle. BRDC outbreaks accoun...

  9. Evaluation of the Aristotle complexity models in adult patients with congenital heart disease.

    PubMed

    Hörer, Jürgen; Vogt, Manfred; Wottke, Michael; Cleuziou, Julie; Kasnar-Samprec, Jelena; Lange, Rüdiger; Schreiber, Christian

    2013-01-01

    The adult congenital heart disease (CHD) population has surpassed the paediatric CHD population. Half of all mortality caused by CHD occurs in adulthood; in some patients, it occurs during surgery. We sought to assess the potential risk factors for adverse outcome after cardiac operations in adults with CHD, and to evaluate the predictive power of the Aristotle score models for hospital mortality. Procedure-dependent and independent factors, as well as the outcome factors of all consecutive patients aged 16 or more who underwent surgery for CHD between 2005 and 2008 at our institution were evaluated according to the European Association for Cardio-Thoracic Surgery Congenital Database nomenclature. An Aristotle basic complexity (ABC) and an Aristotle comprehensive complexity (ACC) score were assigned to each operation. The discriminatory power of the scores was assessed using the area under the receiver operating characteristics (AuROC) curve. During 542 operations, 773 procedures were performed. The early mortality rate was 2.4%, and the early complication rate was 53.7%. Tricuspid valve replacement (P = 0.009), mitral valve replacement (P < 0.001), elevated lung resistances (P = 0.002), hypothyroidism (P = 0.002) and redosternotomy (P = 0.003) emerged as risk factors for 30-day mortality. Tricuspid valve replacement (P < 0.001), tricuspid valvuloplasty (P = 0.006), mitral valve replacement (P = 0.003), shunt implantation (P = 0.009), surgical ablation (P = 0.024), myocardial dysfunction (P = 0.014), elevated lung resistances (P = 0.004), hypothyroidism (P = 0.002) and redosternotomy (P < 0.001) emerged as risk factors for complications. Mean ABC and ACC scores were 6.6 ± 2.3, and 9.0 ± 3.7, respectively. The AuROCs of the ABC and the ACC scores for 30-day mortality were 0.663 (P = 0.044), and 0.755 (P = 0.002), respectively. The AuROCs of the ABC and the ACC scores for complications were 0.634 (P < 0.001), and 0.670 (P < 0.001), respectively. Surgery for adults

  10. Altered glycosylation of complexed native IgG molecules is associated with disease activity of systemic lupus erythematosus.

    PubMed

    Sjöwall, C; Zapf, J; von Löhneysen, S; Magorivska, I; Biermann, M; Janko, C; Winkler, S; Bilyy, R; Schett, G; Herrmann, M; Muñoz, L E

    2015-05-01

    In addition to the redundancy of the receptors for the Fc portion of immunoglobulins, glycans result in potential ligands for a plethora of lectin receptors found in immune effector cells. Here we analysed the exposure of glycans containing fucosyl residues and the fucosylated tri-mannose N-type core by complexed native IgG in longitudinal serum samples of well-characterized patients with systemic lupus erythematosus. Consecutive serum samples of a cohort of 15 patients with systemic lupus erythematosus during periods of increased disease activity and remission were analysed. All patients fulfilled the 1982 American College of Rheumatology classification criteria. Sera of 15 sex- and age-matched normal healthy blood donors served as controls. The levels and type of glycosylation of complexed random IgG was measured with lectin enzyme-immunosorbent assays. After specifically gathering IgG complexes from sera, biotinylated lectins Aleuria aurantia lectin and Lens culinaris agglutinin were employed to detect IgG-associated fucosyl residues and the fucosylated tri-mannose N-glycan core, respectively. In sandwich-ELISAs, IgG-associated IgM, IgA, C1q, C3c and C-reactive protein (CRP) were detected as candidates for IgG immune complex constituents. We studied associations of the glycan of complexed IgG and disease activity according to the physician's global assessment of disease activity and the systemic lupus erythematosus disease activity index 2000 documented at the moment of blood taking. Our results showed significantly higher levels of Aleuria aurantia lectin and Lens culinaris agglutinin binding sites exposed on IgG complexes of patients with systemic lupus erythematosus than on those of normal healthy blood donors. Disease activity in systemic lupus erythematosus correlated with higher exposure of Aleuria aurantia lectin-reactive fucosyl residues by immobilized IgG complexes. Top levels of Aleuria aurantia lectin-reactivity were found in samples taken during the

  11. PerSubs: A Graph-Based Algorithm for the Identification of Perturbed Subpathways Caused by Complex Diseases.

    PubMed

    Vrahatis, Aristidis G; Rapti, Angeliki; Sioutas, Spyros; Tsakalidis, Athanasios

    2017-01-01

    In the era of Systems Biology and growing flow of omics experimental data from high throughput techniques, experimentalists are in need of more precise pathway-based tools to unravel the inherent complexity of diseases and biological processes. Subpathway-based approaches are the emerging generation of pathway-based analysis elucidating the biological mechanisms under the perspective of local topologies onto a complex pathway network. Towards this orientation, we developed PerSub, a graph-based algorithm which detects subpathways perturbed by a complex disease. The perturbations are imprinted through differentially expressed and co-expressed subpathways as recorded by RNA-seq experiments. Our novel algorithm is applied on data obtained from a real experimental study and the identified subpathways provide biological evidence for the brain aging.

  12. Arthropod parasites of springbok, gemsbok, kudus, giraffes and Burchell's and Hartmann's zebras in the Etosha and Hardap Nature Reserves, Namibia.

    PubMed

    Horak, I G; Anthonissen, M; Krecek, R C; Boomker, J

    1992-12-01

    A total of 48 springbok, 48 gemsbok, 23 kudus and 6 giraffes were examined for ticks and lice, while 9 Burchell's zebras and 6 Hartmann's mountain zebras were examined only for ticks. Springbok and gemsbok were shot in both the Etosha National Park in the north and the Hardap Nature Reserve in the south of Namibia. All the other animals were shot in the Etosha National Park. A total of 7 ixodid tick species and 8 lice species were recovered. The springbok carried few ticks. The adults of a Rhipicephalus sp. (near R. oculatus) were most numerous on the gemsbok, especially during November. The kudus were the only animals harbouring Rhipicephalus zambeziensis. Adult Hyalomma truncatum, followed by adult Hyalomma marginatum rufipes, were most abundant on the giraffes and adult Rhipicephalus evertsi mimeticus were commonest on the zebras.

  13. The mitochondrial 13513G>A mutation is associated with Leigh disease phenotypes independent of complex I deficiency in muscle.

    PubMed

    Brautbar, Ariel; Wang, Jing; Abdenur, Jose E; Chang, Richard C; Thomas, Janet A; Grebe, Theresa A; Lim, Cynthia; Weng, Shao-Wen; Graham, Brett H; Wong, Lee-Jun

    2008-08-01

    The mitochondrial 13513G>A (D393N) mutation in the ND5 subunit of the respiratory chain complex I was initially described in association with MELAS syndrome. Recent observations have linked this mutation to Leigh disease. We screened for the 13513G>A mutation in a cohort of 265 patients with Leigh and Leigh-like disease. The mutation was found in a total of 5 patients. An additional patient who had clinical presentation consistent with a Leigh-like phenotype but with a normal brain MRI was added to the cohort. None of an additional 88 patients meeting MELAS disease criteria, nor 56 patients with respiratory chain deficiency screened for the 13513G>A were found positive for the mutation. The most frequent clinical manifestations in our patients were hypotonia, ocular and cerebellar involvement. Low mutation heteroplasmy in the range of 20-40% was observed in all 6 patients. This observation is consistent with the previously reported low heteroplasmy of this mutation in some patients with the 13513G>A mutation and complex I deficiency. However, normal complex I activity was observed in two patients in our cohort. As most patients with Leigh-like disease and the 13513G>A mutation have been described with complex I deficiency, this report adds to the previously reported subset of patients with normal respiratory complex function. We conclude that in any patient with Leigh or Leigh-like disease, testing for the 13513G>A mutation is clinically relevant and low mutant loads in blood or muscle may be considered pathogenic, in the presence of normal respiratory chain enzyme activities.

  14. The care delivery experience of hospitalized patients with complex chronic disease.

    PubMed

    Kuluski, Kerry; Hoang, Sylvia N; Schaink, Alexis K; Alvaro, Celeste; Lyons, Renee F; Tobias, Roy; Bensimon, Cécile M

    2013-12-01

    This study investigated what is important in care delivery from the perspective of hospital inpatients with complex chronic disease, a currently understudied population. One-on-one semi-structured interviews were conducted with inpatients at a continuing care/rehabilitation hospital (n = 116) in Canada between February and July 2011. The study design was mixed methods and reports on patient characteristics and care delivery experiences. Basic descriptive statistics were run using SPSS version 17, and thematic analysis on the transcripts was conducted using NVivo9 software. Patients had an average of 5 morbidities and several illness symptoms including activity of daily living impairments, physical pain and emotional disturbance. Three broad themes (each with one or more subthemes) were generated from the data representing important components of care delivery: components of the care plan (a comprehensive assessment, supported transitions and a bio-psycho-social care package); care capacity and quality (optimal staff to patient ratios, quicker response times, better patient-provider communication and consistency between providers) and the patient-provider relationships (characterized by respect and dignity). As health systems throughout the industrialized world move to sustain health budgets while optimizing quality of care, it is critical to better understand this population, so that appropriate metrics, services and policies can be developed. The study has generated a body of evidence on the important components of care delivery from the perspectives of a diverse group of chronically ill individuals who have spent a considerable amount of time in the health-care system. Moving forward, exploration around the appropriate funding models and skill mix is needed to move the evidence into changed practice. © 2013 John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  15. DNA methylation signatures of chronic low-grade inflammation are associated with complex diseases.

    PubMed

    Ligthart, Symen; Marzi, Carola; Aslibekyan, Stella; Mendelson, Michael M; Conneely, Karen N; Tanaka, Toshiko; Colicino, Elena; Waite, Lindsay L; Joehanes, Roby; Guan, Weihua; Brody, Jennifer A; Elks, Cathy; Marioni, Riccardo; Jhun, Min A; Agha, Golareh; Bressler, Jan; Ward-Caviness, Cavin K; Chen, Brian H; Huan, Tianxiao; Bakulski, Kelly; Salfati, Elias L; Fiorito, Giovanni; Wahl, Simone; Schramm, Katharina; Sha, Jin; Hernandez, Dena G; Just, Allan C; Smith, Jennifer A; Sotoodehnia, Nona; Pilling, Luke C; Pankow, James S; Tsao, Phil S; Liu, Chunyu; Zhao, Wei; Guarrera, Simonetta; Michopoulos, Vasiliki J; Smith, Alicia K; Peters, Marjolein J; Melzer, David; Vokonas, Pantel; Fornage, Myriam; Prokisch, Holger; Bis, Joshua C; Chu, Audrey Y; Herder, Christian; Grallert, Harald; Yao, Chen; Shah, Sonia; McRae, Allan F; Lin, Honghuang; Horvath, Steve; Fallin, Daniele; Hofman, Albert; Wareham, Nicholas J; Wiggins, Kerri L; Feinberg, Andrew P; Starr, John M; Visscher, Peter M; Murabito, Joanne M; Kardia, Sharon L R; Absher, Devin M; Binder, Elisabeth B; Singleton, Andrew B; Bandinelli, Stefania; Peters, Annette; Waldenberger, Melanie; Matullo, Giuseppe; Schwartz, Joel D; Demerath, Ellen W; Uitterlinden, André G; van Meurs, Joyce B J; Franco, Oscar H; Chen, Yii-Der Ida; Levy, Daniel; Turner, Stephen T; Deary, Ian J; Ressler, Kerry J; Dupuis, Josée; Ferrucci, Luigi; Ong, Ken K; Assimes, Themistocles L; Boerwinkle, Eric; Koenig, Wolfgang; Arnett, Donna K; Baccarelli, Andrea A; Benjamin, Emelia J; Dehghan, Abbas

    2016-12-12

    Chronic low-grade inflammation reflects a subclinical immune response implicated in the pathogenesis of complex diseases. Identifying genetic loci where DNA methylation is associated with chronic low-grade inflammation may reveal novel pathways or therapeutic targets for inflammation. We performed a meta-analysis of epigenome-wide association studies (EWAS) of serum C-reactive protein (CRP), which is a sensitive marker of low-grade inflammation, in a large European population (n = 8863) and trans-ethnic replication in African Americans (n = 4111). We found differential methylation at 218 CpG sites to be associated with CRP (P < 1.15 × 10 -7 ) in the discovery panel of European ancestry and replicated (P < 2.29 × 10 -4 ) 58 CpG sites (45 unique loci) among African Americans. To further characterize the molecular and clinical relevance of the findings, we examined the association with gene expression, genetic sequence variants, and clinical outcomes. DNA methylation at nine (16%) CpG sites was associated with whole blood gene expression in cis (P < 8.47 × 10 -5 ), ten (17%) CpG sites were associated with a nearby genetic variant (P < 2.50 × 10 -3 ), and 51 (88%) were also associated with at least one related cardiometabolic entity (P < 9.58 × 10 -5 ). An additive weighted score of replicated CpG sites accounted for up to 6% inter-individual variation (R2) of age-adjusted and sex-adjusted CRP, independent of known CRP-related genetic variants. We have completed an EWAS of chronic low-grade inflammation and identified many novel genetic loci underlying inflammation that may serve as targets for the development of novel therapeutic interventions for inflammation.

  16. The neural crest lineage as a driver of disease heterogeneity in Tuberous Sclerosis Complex and Lymphangioleiomyomatosis

    PubMed Central

    Delaney, Sean P.; Julian, Lisa M.; Stanford, William L.

    2014-01-01

    Lymphangioleiomyomatosis (LAM) is a rare neoplastic disease, best characterized by the formation of proliferative nodules that express smooth muscle and melanocytic antigens within the lung parenchyma, leading to progressive destruction of lung tissue and function. The pathological basis of LAM is associated with Tuberous Sclerosis Complex (TSC), a multi-system disorder marked by low-grade tumors in the brain, kidneys, heart, eyes, lung and skin, arising from inherited or spontaneous germ-line mutations in either of the TSC1 or TSC2 genes. LAM can develop either in a patient with TSC (TSC-LAM) or spontaneously (S-LAM), and it is clear that the majority of LAM lesions of both forms are characterized by an inactivating mutation in either TSC1 or TSC2, as in TSC. Despite this genetic commonality, there is considerable heterogeneity in the tumor spectrum of TSC and LAM patients, the basis for which is currently unknown. There is extensive clinical evidence to suggest that the cell of origin for LAM, as well as many of the TSC-associated tumors, is a neural crest cell, a highly migratory cell type with extensive multi-lineage potential. Here we explore the hypothesis that the types of tumors that develop and the tissues that are affected in TSC and LAM are dictated by the developmental timing of TSC gene mutations, which determines the identities of the affected cell types and the size of downstream populations that acquire a mutation. We further discuss the evidence to support a neural crest origin for LAM and TSC tumors, and propose approaches for generating humanized models of TSC and LAM that will allow cell of origin theories to be experimentally tested. Identifying the cell of origin and developing appropriate humanized models is necessary to truly understand LAM and TSC pathology and to establish effective and long-lasting therapeutic approaches for these patients. PMID:25505789

  17. [Treatment of eyelid retraction in Grave's disease by recession of the levator complex].

    PubMed

    Fichter, N; Schittkowski, M; Guthoff, R F

    2004-11-01

    The chronic stage in Grave's orbitopathy is characterised by fibrotic changes within the orbital soft tissues, especially the extraocular muscles. Retraction of the eyelids is a common clinical feature of this phenomenon. To solve this problem several techniques for lengthening the upper eyelid have been described with variable rates of success. In this report we describe our modified Harvey's technique for the correction of upper eyelid retraction which includes a complete recession of the Muller's muscle/levator complex from the tarsal plate without the interposition of a spacer. Finally only the skin and the superficial orbicularis muscle are sutured. We also report about our results with this procedure. 8 patients (1 male, 7 female) with lid retraction in Grave's ophthalmopathy were recorded who had undergone the modified lengthening technique by an external approach between 2001 and 2004. Four patients underwent a bilateral procedure and 1 patient showed a significant under-correction, necessitating reoperation. So a total of 13 procedures were included in this follow-up study. Beside the common ophthalmological examination, special interest was put in the difference of the two eyelid apertures in primary position pre- and postoperatively. Within a follow-up period of at least 3 months we recorded an averaged lengthening of the upper eyelid of 3.1 mm. The difference of the two eyelid apertures in primary position improved from 2.2 mm preoperatively to 1.0 mm postoperatively. Only 1 patient needed reoperation because of a significant under-correction. There were no late over-corrections observed. The modified Harvey's technique to lengthen the upper eyelid is a safe and effective method to reduce upper eyelid retraction in Grave's disease. An eventually required orbital decompression or extraocular muscle surgery has to be done before the lid surgery.

  18. Combined therapies to treat complex diseases: The role of the gut microbiota in multiple sclerosis.

    PubMed

    Calvo-Barreiro, Laura; Eixarch, Herena; Montalban, Xavier; Espejo, Carmen

    2018-02-01

    The commensal microbiota has emerged as an environmental risk factor for multiple sclerosis (MS). Studies in experimental autoimmune encephalomyelitis (EAE) models have shown that the commensal microbiota is an essential player in triggering autoimmune demyelination. Likewise, the commensal microbiota modulates the host immune system, alters the integrity and function of biological barriers and has a direct effect on several types of central nervous system (CNS)-resident cells. Moreover, a characteristic gut dysbiosis has been recognized as a consistent feature during the clinical course of MS, and the MS-related microbiota is gradually being elucidated. This review highlights animal studies in which commensal microbiota modulation was tested in EAE, as well as the mechanisms of action and influence of the commensal microbiota not only in the local milieu but also in the innate and adaptive immune system and the CNS. Regarding human research, this review focuses on studies that show how the commensal microbiota might act as a pathogenic environmental risk factor by directing immune responses towards characteristic pathogenic profiles of MS. We speculate how specific microbiome signatures could be obtained and used as potential pathogenic events and biomarkers for the clinical course of MS. Finally, we review recently published and ongoing clinical trials in MS patients regarding the immunomodulatory properties exerted by some microorganisms. Because MS is a complex disease with a large variety of associated environmental risk factors, we suggest that current treatments combined with strategies that modulate the commensal microbiota would constitute a broader immunotherapeutic approach and improve the clinical outcome for MS patients. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  19. Minocycline HCl microspheres reduce red-complex bacteria in periodontal disease therapy.

    PubMed

    Goodson, J Max; Gunsolley, John C; Grossi, Sara G; Bland, Paul S; Otomo-Corgel, Joan; Doherty, Frances; Comiskey, Judy

    2007-08-01

    The objective of this trial was to measure the antimicrobial effects of a minocycline HCl microsphere (MM) local drug-delivery system when used as an adjunct to scaling and root planing (SRP). DNA probe analysis for 40 bacteria was used to evaluate the oral bacteria of 127 subjects with moderate to advanced chronic periodontitis. Subjects were randomly assigned to either SRP alone (N = 65) or MM + SRP (N = 62). The primary endpoints of this study were changes in numbers and proportions of the red-complex bacteria (RCB) and the sum of Porphyromonas gingivalis, Tannerella forsythia (formally T. forsythensis), and Treponema denticola relative to 40 oral bacteria at each test site from baseline to day 30. Numbers of RCB from the five test sites were averaged to provide a value for each subject. MM + SRP reduced the proportion of RCB by 6.49% and the numbers by 9.4 x 10(5). The reduction in RCB proportions and numbers by SRP alone (5.03% and 5.1 x 10(5), respectively) was significantly less. In addition, MM + SRP reduced probing depth by 1.38 mm (compared to 1.01 mm by SRP alone), bleeding on probing was reduced by 25.2% (compared to 13.8% by SRP alone), and a clinical attachment level gain of 1.16 mm (compared to 0.80 mm by SRP alone) was achieved. These observations support the hypothesis that RCBs are responsible for periodontal disease and that local antimicrobial therapy using MM + SRP effectively reduces numbers of RCBs and their proportions to a greater extent than SRP alone.

  20. The clinical efficacy of a clarithromycin-based regimen for Mycobacterium avium complex disease: A nationwide post-marketing study.

    PubMed

    Kadota, Jun-Ichi; Kurashima, Atsuyuki; Suzuki, Katsuhiro

    2017-05-01

    The revised 2007 American Thoracic Society/Infectious Diseases Society of America statement recommend clarithromycin-based combination therapy for treatment of Mycobacterium avium complex lung disease and stipulates approximately 1 year of continuous treatment after bacilli negative conversion. However, supporting data are insufficient. Our objective was to obtain data on the clinical outcome of clarithromycin-based daily regimens by conducting a nationwide retrospective post-marketing study of M. avium complex lung disease. In accordance with the Japanese guidelines, patients were enrolled in this survey according to their chest radiographic findings and microbiologic test results. They were treated with a multidrug regimen including clarithromycin, rifampicin, and ethambutol (clarithromycin-based regimen) until bacilli negative conversion, and the treatment was continued for approximately 1 year after the initial conversion. Data were collected before administration, at the time of bacilli negative conversion, at the end of treatment, and at 6 months after the end of treatment. Of the 466 subjects enrolled in the study, 271 patients who received clarithromycin at 800 mg/day underwent evaluation for M. avium complex disease. The final bacilli negative conversion rate in those patients was 94.7%. The bacteriological relapse rate was 5.0% (5/100 patients). Bacteriological relapse was noted in patients treated for less than 15 months after conversion. No life-threatening or serious adverse drug reactions were observed. This study demonstrated that a clarithromycin-based daily regimen can yield a high bacteriological conversion rate in M. avium complex disease. After conversion, treatment for less than 15 months might be insufficient to prevent bacteriological relapse. Copyright © 2017 Japanese Society of Chemotherapy and The Japanese Association for Infectious Diseases. Published by Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  1. Zebra mussels (Dreissena polymorpha) limit food for larval fish (Pimephales promelas) in turbulent systems: A bioenergetics analysis

    Bartsch, L.A.; Richardson, W.B.; Sandheinrich, M.B.

    2003-01-01

    We conducted a factorial experiment, in outdoor mesocosms, on the effects of zebra mussels and water column mixing (i.e., turbulence) on the diet, growth, and survival of larval fathead minnows (Pimephales promelas). Significant (P < 0.05) larval mortality occurred by the end of the experiment with the highest mortality (90%) occurring in the presence of both turbulence and zebra mussels, whereas mortality was 37% in treatment with turbulence and 17% and 18% in the zebra mussels treatment, and the control, respectively. The size of individual fish was significantly different among treatments at the end of the experiment and was inversely related to survival. Levels of trophic resources (i.e., phyto and zooplankton) varied among treatments and were treatment specific. Turbulent mixing facilitated removal of phytoplankton by zebra mussels by making the entire water column of the tanks available to these benthic filter feeders. Early in the experiment (Day = 0 to 14) the physical process of turbulent mixing likely caused a reduction in standing stocks of zooplankton. The interactive effect of turbulence and mussels reduced copepod and rotifer stocks, through physical processes and through filtration by zebra mussels, relative to the turbulence treatment. The reductions in the number of total zooplankton in the turbulent mixing mesocosms and the further reduction of rotifer and copepod in the turbulence and mussels treatment coincided with a period of increased reliance of larval fathead minnows on these prey. Estimates of consumption from bioenergetics modeling and measured prey standing stocks indicated caloric resources of suitable prey in turbulence treatments during the early weeks of the experiment were insufficient to prevent starvation. Early mortality in the turbulence and mussels treatment likely released surviving fish from intense intraspecific competition and resulted in higher individual growth rates. A combination of high abundance of zebra mussels in an

  2. Zebra mussels (Dreissena polymorpha) limit food for larval fish (Pimephales promelas) in turbulent systems: a bioenergetics analysis

    Bartsch, L.A.; Richardson, W.B.; Sandheinrich, M.B.

    2003-01-01

    We conducted a factorial experiment, in outdoor mesocosms, on the effects of zebra mussels and water column mixing (i.e., turbulence) on the diet, growth, and survival of larval fathead minnows (Pimephales promelas). Significant (P < 0.05) larval mortality occurred by the end of the experiment with the highest mortality (90%) occurring in the presence of both turbulence and zebra mussels, whereas mortality was 37% in treatment with turbulence and 17% and 18% in the zebra mussels treatment, and the control, respectively. The size of individual fish was significantly different among treatments at the end of the experiment and was inversely related to survival. Levels of trophic resources (i.e., phyto and zooplankton) varied among treatments and were treatment specific. Turbulent mixing facilitated removal of phytoplankton by zebra mussels by making the entire water column of the tanks available to these benthic filter feeders. Early in the experiment (Day = 0 to 14) the physical process of turbulent mixing likely caused a reduction in standing stocks of zooplankton. The interactive effect of turbulence and mussels reduced copepod and rotifer stocks, through physical processes and through filtration by zebra mussels, relative to the turbulence treatment. The reductions in the number of total zooplankton in the turbulent mixing mesocosms and the further reduction of rotifer and copepod in the turbulence and mussels treatment coincided with a period of increased reliance of larval fathead minnows on these prey. Estimates of consumption from bioenergetics modeling and measured prey standing stocks indicated caloric resources of suitable prey in turbulence treatments during the early weeks of the experiment were insufficient to prevent starvation. Early mortality in the turbulence and mussels treatment likely released surviving fish from intense intraspecific competition and resulted in higher individual growth rates. A combination of high abundance of zebra mussels in an

  3. Mate call as reward: Acoustic communication signals can acquire positive reinforcing values during adulthood in female zebra finches (Taeniopygia guttata).

    PubMed

    Hernandez, Alexandra M; Perez, Emilie C; Mulard, Hervé; Mathevon, Nicolas; Vignal, Clémentine

    2016-02-01

    Social stimuli can have rewarding properties and promote learning. In birds, conspecific vocalizations like song can act as a reinforcer, and specific song variants can acquire particular rewarding values during early life exposure. Here we ask if, during adulthood, an acoustic signal simpler and shorter than song can become a reward for a female songbird because of its particular social value. Using an operant choice apparatus, we showed that female zebra finches display a preferential response toward their mate's calls. This reinforcing value of mate's calls could be involved in the maintenance of the monogamous pair-bond of the zebra finch. (c) 2016 APA, all rights reserved).

  4. Body size-dependent Cd accumulation in the zebra mussel Dreissena polymorpha from different routes.

    PubMed

    Tang, Wen-Li; Evans, Douglas; Kraemer, Lisa; Zhong, Huan

    2017-02-01

    Understanding body size-dependent metal accumulation in aquatic organisms (i.e., metal allometry) is critical in interpreting biomonitoring data. While growth has received the most attention, little is known about controls of metal exposure routes on metal allometry. Here, size-dependent Cd accumulation in zebra mussels (Dreissena polymorpha) from different routes were investigated by exposing mussels to A.( 111 Cd spiked algae+ 113 Cd spiked river water) or B.( 111 Cd spiked sediments+ 113 Cd spiked river water). After exposure, 111 Cd or 113 Cd levels in mussel tissue were found to be negatively correlated with tissue weight, while Cd allometry coefficients (b values) were dependent on Cd exposure routes: -0.664 for algae, -0.241 for sediments and -0.379 for river water, compared to -0.582 in un-exposed mussels. By comparing different Cd exposure routes, we found that size-dependent Cd bioaccumulation from algae or river water could be more responsible for the overall size-dependent Cd accumulation in mussels, and the relative importance of the two sources was dependent on mussel size ranges: Cadmium obtained from algae (algae-Cd) was more important in size-dependent Cd accumulation in smaller mussels (tissue dry weight < 5 mg), while river water-Cd became more important in larger individuals (tissue dry weight > 5 mg). In contrast, sediment-Cd contributed only a small amount to Cd accumulation in zebra mussels and may have little effect on size-dependent Cd bioaccumulation. Our results suggest that size-dependent Cd accumulation in mussels could be largely affected by exposure routes, which should be considered when trying to interpret Cd biomonitoring data of zebra mussels. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  5. Behavioural and physiological effects of population density on domesticated Zebra Finches (Taeniopygia guttata) held in aviaries.

    PubMed

    Poot, Hanneke; ter Maat, Andries; Trost, Lisa; Schwabl, Ingrid; Jansen, René F; Gahr, Manfred

    2012-02-01

    Zebra Finches (Taeniopygia guttata) are highly social and monogamous birds that display relatively low levels of aggression and coordinate group life mainly by means of vocal communication. In the wild, small groups may congregate to larger flocks of up to 150-350 birds. Little is known, however, about possible effects of population density on development in captivity. Investigating density effects on physiology and behaviour might be helpful in identifying optimal group size, in order to optimise Zebra Finch wellbeing. A direct effect of population density on development and reproduction was found: birds in lower density conditions produced significantly more and larger (body mass, tarsus length) surviving offspring than birds in high density conditions. Furthermore, offspring in low density aviaries produced slightly longer song motifs and more different syllables than their tutors, whereas offspring in high density aviaries produced shorter motifs and a smaller or similar number of different syllables than their tutors. Aggression levels within the populations were low throughout the experiment, but the number of aggressive interactions was significantly higher in high density aviaries. Baseline corticosterone levels did not differ significantly between high- and low density aviaries for either adult or offspring birds. On day 15 post hatching, brood size and baseline corticosterone levels were positively correlated. On days 60 and 100 post hatching this correlation was no longer present. The results of this study prove that population density affects various aspects of Zebra Finch development, with birds living in low population density conditions having an advantage over those living under higher population density conditions. Copyright © 2011 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  6. Zebra finches have a light-dependent magnetic compass similar to migratory birds.

    PubMed

    Pinzon-Rodriguez, Atticus; Muheim, Rachel

    2017-04-01

    Birds have a light-dependent magnetic compass that provides information about the spatial alignment of the geomagnetic field. It is proposed to be located in the avian retina and mediated by a light-induced, radical-pair mechanism involving cryptochromes as sensory receptor molecules. To investigate how the behavioural responses of birds under different light spectra match with cryptochromes as the primary magnetoreceptor, we examined the spectral properties of the magnetic compass in zebra finches. We trained birds to relocate a food reward in a spatial orientation task using magnetic compass cues. The birds were well oriented along the trained magnetic compass axis when trained and tested under low-irradiance 521 nm green light. In the presence of a 1.4 MHz radio-frequency electromagnetic (RF)-field, the birds were disoriented, which supports the involvement of radical-pair reactions in the primary magnetoreception process. Birds trained and tested under 638 nm red light showed a weak tendency to orient ∼45 deg clockwise of the trained magnetic direction. Under low-irradiance 460 nm blue light, they tended to orient along the trained magnetic compass axis, but were disoriented under higher irradiance light. Zebra finches trained and tested under high-irradiance 430 nm indigo light were well oriented along the trained magnetic compass axis, but disoriented in the presence of a RF-field. We conclude that magnetic compass responses of zebra finches are similar to those observed in nocturnally migrating birds and agree with cryptochromes as the primary magnetoreceptor, suggesting that light-dependent, radical-pair-mediated magnetoreception is a common property for all birds, including non-migratory species. © 2017. Published by The Company of Biologists Ltd.

  7. The Undiagnosed Diseases Program Integrated Collaboration System (UDPICS): One Program’s Experience Developing Custom Software to Support Research for Complex-Disease Families

    PubMed Central

    Guzman, Jessica; Lee, Elizabeth; Draper, David; Valivullah, Zaheer; Yu, Guoyun; Sincan, Murat; Gahl, William A.; Adams, David R.

    2015-01-01

    The Undiagnosed Diseases Program (UDP) was started in 2008 with the goals of making diagnoses and facilitating related translational research. The individuals and families seen by the UDP are often unique and medically complex. Approximately 40% of UDP cases are pediatric. The Undiagnosed Diseases Program Integrated Collaboration System (UDPICS) was designed to create a collaborative workspace for researchers, clinicians and families. We describe our progress in developing the system to date, focusing on design rationale, challenges and issues that are likely to be common in the development of similar systems in the future. PMID:27417368

  8. High-density genetic map of Miscanthus sinensis reveals inheritance of zebra stripe

    SciT

    Liu, Siyao; Clark, Lindsay V.; Swaminathan, Kankshita

    Miscanthus is a perennial C4 grass that has recently become an important bioenergy crop. The efficiency of breeding improved Miscanthus biomass cultivars could be greatly increased by marker-assisted selection. Thus, a high-density genetic map is critical to Miscanthus improvement. In this study, a mapping population of 261 F1 progeny was developed from a cross between two diploid M. sinensis cultivars, ‘Strictus’ and ‘Kaskade’. High-density genetic maps for the two parents were produced with 3044 newly developed single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) obtained from restriction site-associated DNA sequencing, and 138 previously mapped GoldenGate SNPs. The female parent (‘Strictus’) map spanned 1599 cM,more » with 1989 SNPs on 19 linkage groups, and an average intermarker spacing of 0.8 cM. The length of the male parent (‘Kaskade’) map was 1612 cM, with 1821 SNPs, and an average intermarker spacing of 0.9 cM. The utility of the map was confirmed by locating quantitative trait loci (QTL) for the zebra-striped trait, which was segregating in this population. Three QTL for zebra-striped presence/absence (zb1, zb2 on LG 7, and zb3 on LG 10) and three for zebra-striped intensity (zbi1, zbi2, zbi3 on LGs 7, 10, 3) were identified. Each allele that caused striping was recessive. Incomplete penetrance was observed for each zb QTL, but penetrance was greatest when two or more zb QTL were homozygous for the causative alleles. Similarly, the intensity of striping was greatest when two or more zbi QTL were homozygous for alleles that conferred the trait. Comparative mapping indicated putative correspondence between zb3 and/or zbi2 on LG 10 to previously sequenced genes conferring zebra stripe in maize and rice. These results demonstrate that the new map is useful for identifying marker–trait associations. The mapped markers will become a valuable community resource, facilitating comparisons among studies and the breeding of Miscanthus.« less

  9. High-density genetic map of Miscanthus sinensis reveals inheritance of zebra stripe

    DOE PAGES

    Liu, Siyao; Clark, Lindsay V.; Swaminathan, Kankshita; ...

    2015-05-06

    Miscanthus is a perennial C4 grass that has recently become an important bioenergy crop. The efficiency of breeding improved Miscanthus biomass cultivars could be greatly increased by marker-assisted selection. Thus, a high-density genetic map is critical to Miscanthus improvement. In this study, a mapping population of 261 F1 progeny was developed from a cross between two diploid M. sinensis cultivars, ‘Strictus’ and ‘Kaskade’. High-density genetic maps for the two parents were produced with 3044 newly developed single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) obtained from restriction site-associated DNA sequencing, and 138 previously mapped GoldenGate SNPs. The female parent (‘Strictus’) map spanned 1599 cM,more » with 1989 SNPs on 19 linkage groups, and an average intermarker spacing of 0.8 cM. The length of the male parent (‘Kaskade’) map was 1612 cM, with 1821 SNPs, and an average intermarker spacing of 0.9 cM. The utility of the map was confirmed by locating quantitative trait loci (QTL) for the zebra-striped trait, which was segregating in this population. Three QTL for zebra-striped presence/absence (zb1, zb2 on LG 7, and zb3 on LG 10) and three for zebra-striped intensity (zbi1, zbi2, zbi3 on LGs 7, 10, 3) were identified. Each allele that caused striping was recessive. Incomplete penetrance was observed for each zb QTL, but penetrance was greatest when two or more zb QTL were homozygous for the causative alleles. Similarly, the intensity of striping was greatest when two or more zbi QTL were homozygous for alleles that conferred the trait. Comparative mapping indicated putative correspondence between zb3 and/or zbi2 on LG 10 to previously sequenced genes conferring zebra stripe in maize and rice. These results demonstrate that the new map is useful for identifying marker–trait associations. The mapped markers will become a valuable community resource, facilitating comparisons among studies and the breeding of Miscanthus.« less

  10. Use of alternating and pulsed direct current electrified fields for zebra mussel control

    Luoma, James A.; Dean, Jan C.; Severson, Todd J.; Wise, Jeremy K.; Barbour, Matthew

    2017-01-01

    Alternatives to chemicals for controlling dreissenid mussels are desirable for environmental compatibility, but few alternatives exist. Previous studies have evaluated the use of electrified fields for stunning and/or killing planktonic life stages of dreissenid mussels, however, the available literature on the use of electrified fields to control adult dreissenid mussels is limited. We evaluated the effects of sinusoidal alternating current (AC) and 20% duty cycle square-wave pulsed direct current (PDC) exposure on the survival of adult zebra mussels at water temperatures of 10, 15, and 22 °C. Peak voltage gradients of ~ 17 and 30 Vp/cm in the AC and PDC exposures, respectively, were continuously applied for 24, 48, or 72 h. Peak power densities ranged from 77,999 to 107,199 µW/cm3 in the AC exposures and 245,320 to 313,945 µW/cm3 in the PDC exposures. The peak dose ranged from 6,739 to 27,298 Joules/cm3 and 21,306 to 80,941 Joules/cm3 in the AC and PDC exposures, respectively. The applied power ranged from 16.6 to 68.9 kWh in the AC exposures and from 22.2 to 86.4 kWh in the PDC exposures. Mortality ranged from 2.7 to 92.7% in the AC exposed groups and from 24.0 to 98.7% in PDC exposed groups. Mortality increased with corresponding increases in water temperature and exposure duration, and we observed more zebra mussel mortality in the PDC exposures. Exposures conducted with AC required less of a peak dose (Joules/cm3) but more applied power (kWh) to achieve the same level of adult zebra mussel mortality as corresponding PDC exposures. The results demonstrate that 20% duty cycle square-wave PDC requires less energy than sinusoidal AC to inducing the same level of adult zebra mussel mortality.

  11. MicroRNAs and complex diseases: from experimental results to computational models.

    PubMed

    Chen, Xing; Xie, Di; Zhao, Qi; You, Zhu-Hong

    2017-10-17

    Plenty of microRNAs (miRNAs) were discovered at a rapid pace in plants, green algae, viruses and animals. As one of the most important components in the cell, miRNAs play a growing important role in various essential and important biological processes. For the recent few decades, amounts of experimental methods and computational models have been designed and implemented to identify novel miRNA-disease associations. In this review, the functions of miRNAs, miRNA-target interactions, miRNA-disease associations and some important publicly available miRNA-related databases were discussed in detail. Specially, considering the important fact that an increasing number of miRNA-disease associations have been experimentally confirmed, we selected five important miRNA-related human diseases and five crucial disease-related miRNAs and provided corresponding introductions. Identifying disease-related miRNAs has become an important goal of biomedical research, which will accelerate the understanding of disease pathogenesis at the molecular level and molecular tools design for disease diagnosis, treatment and prevention. Computational models have become an important means for novel miRNA-disease association identification, which could select the most promising miRNA-disease pairs for experimental validation and significantly reduce the time and cost of the biological experiments. Here, we reviewed 20 state-of-the-art computational models of predicting miRNA-disease associations from different perspectives. Finally, we summarized four important factors for the difficulties of predicting potential disease-related miRNAs, the framework of constructing powerful computational models to predict potential miRNA-disease associations including five feasible and important research schemas, and future directions for further development of computational models. © The Author 2017. Published by Oxford University Press. All rights reserved. For Permissions, please email: journals.permissions@oup.com.

  12. Hypoxic Challenge Testing (Fitness to Fly) in children with complex congenital heart disease.

    PubMed

    Naqvi, Nitha; Doughty, Victoria L; Starling, Luke; Franklin, Rodney C; Ward, Simon; Daubeney, Piers E F; Balfour-Lynn, Ian M

    2018-02-14

    Commercial airplanes fly with an equivalent cabin fraction of inspired oxygen of 0.15, leading to reduced oxygen saturation (SpO 2 ) in passengers. How this affects children with complex congenital heart disease (CHD) is unknown. We conducted Hypoxic Challenge Testing (HCT) to assess need for inflight supplemental oxygen. Children aged <16 years had a standard HCT. They were grouped as (A) normal versus abnormal baseline SpO 2 (≥95% vs <95%) and (B) absence versus presence of an actual/potential right-to-left (R-L) shunt. We measured SpO 2 , heart rate, QT interval corrected for heart rate and partial pressure of carbon dioxide measured transcutaneously (PtcCO 2 ). A test failed when children with (1) normal baseline SpO 2 desaturated to 85%, (2) baseline SpO 2 85%-94% desaturated by 15% of baseline; and (3) baseline SpO 2 75%-84% desaturated to 70%. There were 68 children, mean age 3.3 years (range 10 weeks-14.5 years). Children with normal (n=36) baseline SpO 2 desaturated from median 99% to 91%, P<0.0001, and 3/36 (8%) failed the test. Those with abnormal baseline SpO 2 (n=32) desaturated from median 84% to 76%, P<0.0001, and 5/32 (16%) failed (no significant difference between groups). Children with no R-L shunt (n=25) desaturated from median 99% to 93%, P<0.0001, but 0/25 failed. Those with an actual/potential R-L shunt (n=43) desaturated from median 87% to 78%, P<0.0001, and 8/43 (19%) failed (difference between groups P<0.02). PtcCO 2 , heart rate and QT interval corrected for heart rate were unaffected by the hypoxic state. This is the first evidence to help guide which children with CHD need a preflight HCT. We suggest all children with an actual or potential R-L shunt should be tested. © Article author(s) (or their employer(s) unless otherwise stated in the text of the article) 2018. All rights reserved. No commercial use is permitted unless otherwise expressly granted.

  13. Complex clinical and microbiological effects on Legionnaires' disease outcone; A retrospective cohort study.

    PubMed

    Levcovich, Ariela; Lazarovitch, Tsilia; Moran-Gilad, Jacob; Peretz, Chava; Yakunin, Eugenia; Valinsky, Lea; Weinberger, Miriam

    2016-02-10

    Legionnaires' disease (LD) is associated with high mortality rates and poses a diagnostic and therapeutic challenge. Use of the rapid urinary antigen test (UAT) has been linked to improved outcome. We examined the association between the method of diagnosis (UAT or culture) and various clinical and microbiological characteristics and outcome of LD. Consecutive patients with pneumonia and confirmation of Legionella infection by a positive UAT and/or a positive culture admitted between the years 2006-2012 to a university hospital were retrospectively studied. Isolated L. pneumophila strains were subject to serogrouping, immunological subtyping and sequence-based typing. Variables associated with 30-day all-cause mortality were analyzed using logistic regression as well as cox regression. Seventy-two patients were eligible for mortality analyses (LD study group), of whom 15.5 % have died. Diagnosis based on positive L. pneumophila UAT as compared to positive culture (OR = 0.18, 95 % CI 0.03-0.98, p = 0.05) and administration of appropriate antibiotic therapy within 2 hospitalization days as compared to delayed therapy (OR = 0.16, 95 % CI 0.03-0.90, p = 0.04) were independently associated with reduced mortality. When controlling for intensive care unit (ICU) admissions, the method of diagnosis became non-significant. Survival analyses showed a significantly increased death risk for patients admitted to ICU compared to others (HR 12.90, 95 % CI 2.78-59.86, p = 0.001) and reduced risk for patients receiving appropriate antibiotic therapy within the first two admissions days compared to delayed therapy (HR 0.13, 95 % CI 0.04-0.05, p = 0.001). Legionella cultures were positive in 35 patients (including 29 patients from the LD study group), of whom 65.7 % were intubated and 37.1 % have died. Sequence type (ST) ST1 accounted for 50.0 % of the typed cases and ST1, OLDA/Oxford was the leading phenon (53.8 %). Mortality rate among patients in the LD study group infected with ST

  14. Detecting the tipping points in a three-state model of complex diseases by temporal differential networks.

    PubMed

    Chen, Pei; Li, Yongjun; Liu, Xiaoping; Liu, Rui; Chen, Luonan

    2017-10-26

    The progression of complex diseases, such as diabetes and cancer, is generally a nonlinear process with three stages, i.e., normal state, pre-disease state, and disease state, where the pre-disease state is a critical state or tipping point immediately preceding the disease state. Traditional biomarkers aim to identify a disease state by exploiting the information of differential expressions for the observed molecules, but may fail to detect a pre-disease state because there are generally little significant differences between the normal and pre-disease states. Thus, it is challenging to signal the pre-disease state, which actually implies the disease