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Mathieu Bonneau, Régis Sabbadin, Fred A Johnson, Bradley Stith
Conversion of wild habitats to human dominated landscape is a major cause of biodiversity loss. An approach to mitigate the impact of habitat loss consists of designating reserves where habitat is preserved and managed. Determining the most valuable areas to preserve in a landscape is called the reserve design problem. There exists several possible formulations of the reserve design problem, depending on the objectives and the constraints. In this article, we considered the dynamic problem of designing a reserve that contains a desired area of several key habitats...
2018: PloS One
Zengkai Shao, Jiangbo Zhu, Yanfeng Zhang, Yujie Chen, Siyuan Yu
Cylindrical vector vortex (CVV) beams, complex light fields that exhibit a vector nature and carry quantized orbital angular momentum (OAM) states, have been widely investigated due to their rich applications. Current technologies to generate CVV beams using individual polarization and spatial phase manipulations suffer from bulky size and low configurability. In this Letter, we propose and experimentally demonstrate an approach to generate CVV beams with a single integrated device based on a silicon nitride microring resonator and embedded top-gratings...
March 15, 2018: Optics Letters
Thomas Mulkey, Jimmy Dillies, Maxim Durach
We formulate and solve the inverse problem of quartic photonics, or photonics of metamaterials, whose k-surfaces (also known as iso-frequency surfaces or Fresnel surfaces) are quartic surfaces. This provides an approach to engineer the effective parameters of metamaterials starting from the desired plane waves. We apply our method to the design of the high-k limit of metamaterials, extreme non-reciprocity, and complex bi-anisotropic media.
March 15, 2018: Optics Letters
Geraldine Dowling, Pierce V Kavanagh, Hans-Georg Eckhardt, Brendan Twamley, Gary Hessman, Gavin McLaughlin, John O' Brien, Simon D Brandt
Nitrazolam and clonazolam are two designer benzodiazepines that are available from internet retailers and there is growing evidence suggesting that such compounds have the potential to cause severe adverse events. Information about tolerability in humans is scarce but typically, low doses can be difficult to administer for users when handling bulk material and variability of the active ingredient in tablet formulations can also be of a concern. Customs, toxicology and forensic laboratories are increasingly encountering designer benzodiazepines, both in tablet and powdered forms, and the unavailability of reference standards can impact on the ability to identify these compounds...
March 15, 2018: Drug Testing and Analysis
David Haro Alonso, Miles N Wernick, Yongyi Yang, Guido Germano, Daniel S Berman, Piotr Slomka
BACKGROUND: We developed machine-learning (ML) models to estimate a patient's risk of cardiac death based on adenosine myocardial perfusion SPECT (MPS) and associated clinical data, and compared their performance to baseline logistic regression (LR). We demonstrated an approach to visually convey the reasoning behind a patient's risk to provide insight to clinicians beyond that of a "black box." METHODS: We trained multiple models using 122 potential clinical predictors (features) for 8321 patients, including 551 cases of subsequent cardiac death...
March 14, 2018: Journal of Nuclear Cardiology: Official Publication of the American Society of Nuclear Cardiology
Collin D Edington, Wen Li Kelly Chen, Emily Geishecker, Timothy Kassis, Luis R Soenksen, Brij M Bhushan, Duncan Freake, Jared Kirschner, Christian Maass, Nikolaos Tsamandouras, Jorge Valdez, Christi D Cook, Tom Parent, Stephen Snyder, Jiajie Yu, Emily Suter, Michael Shockley, Jason Velazquez, Jeremy J Velazquez, Linda Stockdale, Julia P Papps, Iris Lee, Nicholas Vann, Mario Gamboa, Matthew E LaBarge, Zhe Zhong, Xin Wang, Laurie A Boyer, Douglas A Lauffenburger, Rebecca L Carrier, Catherine Communal, Steven R Tannenbaum, Cynthia L Stokes, David J Hughes, Gaurav Rohatgi, David L Trumper, Murat Cirit, Linda G Griffith
Microphysiological systems (MPSs) are in vitro models that capture facets of in vivo organ function through use of specialized culture microenvironments, including 3D matrices and microperfusion. Here, we report an approach to co-culture multiple different MPSs linked together physiologically on re-useable, open-system microfluidic platforms that are compatible with the quantitative study of a range of compounds, including lipophilic drugs. We describe three different platform designs - "4-way", "7-way", and "10-way" - each accommodating a mixing chamber and up to 4, 7, or 10 MPSs...
March 14, 2018: Scientific Reports
Ray Hu, Michael P Morley, Jeffrey Brandimarto, Nathan R Tucker, Victoria A Parsons, Sihai D Zhao, Benjamin Meder, Hugo A Katus, Frank Rühle, Monika Stoll, Eric Villard, François Cambien, Honghuang Lin, Nicholas L Smith, Janine F Felix, Ramachandran S Vasan, Pim van der Harst, Christopher Newton-Cheh, Jin Li, Cecilia E Kim, Hakon Hakonarson, Sridhar Hannenhalli, Euan A Ashley, Christine S Moravec, W H Wilson Tang, Marjorie Maillet, Jeffery D Molkentin, Patrick T Ellinor, Kenneth B Margulies, Thomas P Cappola
BACKGROUND: Inhibition of PKC-α (protein kinase C-α) enhances contractility and cardioprotection in animal models, but effects in humans are unknown. Genotypes at rs9912468 strongly associate with PRKCA expression in the left ventricle, enabling genetic approaches to measure effects of reduced PKC-α in human populations. METHODS AND RESULTS: We analyzed the cis expression quantitative trait locus for PRKCA marked by rs9912468 using 313 left ventricular specimens from European Ancestry patients...
March 2018: Circ Genom Precis Med
Sana B Ali, Juana Romero, Kevin Morrison, Baria Hafeez, Jessica S Ancker
OBJECTIVES:  Although electronic patient portals are offered by most health care organizations, poor usability and poor fit to patient needs may pose barriers to adoption. We collaborated with an academic hospital to conduct iterative user evaluation of a newly deployed portal designed to deliver inpatient data upon hospital discharge. METHODS:  Three evaluators applied heuristic usability evaluation and conducted 23 individual user testing sessions with patients with chronic disease or managing the care of family members with chronic disease...
January 2018: Applied Clinical Informatics
Xizhen Lian, Yanyan Huang, Yuanyuan Zhu, Yu Fang, Rui Zhao, Elizabeth Joseph, Jialuo Li, Jean-Phillipe Pellois, Hongcai Zhou
Prodrug activation by exogenously administered enzymes for cancer therapy is an approach to achieve better selectivity and less systemic toxicity than conventional chemotherapy. However, the short half-lives of the activating enzymes in bloodstream has limited its success. Here, we demonstrate that a tyrosinase-MOF nanoreactor activates the prodrug paracetamol in cancer cells in a long-lasting manner. By generating reactive oxygen species (ROS) and depleting glutathione (GSH), the product of enzymatic conversion of paracetamol is toxic to drug-resistant cancer cells...
March 13, 2018: Angewandte Chemie
J Hou, W Jiang, L Zhu, S Zhong, H Zhang, J Li, S Zhou, S Yang, Y He, D Wang, X Chen, F Deng, Q Zhang, J Wang, J Hu, W Zhang, L Ding, J Zhao, J Tang
Circular RNAs (CircRNAs) are a type of non-coding RNAs (NcRNAs) with a closed annular structure. Until next-generation sequencing (NGS) is developed, the misunderstanding of circRNAs 'splicing error' has changed, and the mysterious veil of circRNAs has been revealed. NGS provides an approach to investigate circRNAs. Many scholars point out that circRNAs may play an important role in many diseases, especially cancer. At the same time, exosomes, as a kind of extracellular vesicles loaded with many contents, are a hotspot in recent years...
March 13, 2018: Clinical & Translational Oncology
Peng Zhang, Xing Hu
Urea is an important precursor of the harmful carcinogenic product ethyl carbamate in fermented wines. To decipher more fully the contributions of three arginine permeases, Can1p, Gap1p and Alp1p in urea formation, various engineered strains were examined for their ability to form urea. This included seven mutants with different combinations of permease deficiency and grown in both simple and more complex media, and the wild-type strain modified to overexpress the three arginine permeases. A truncated GATA transcription factor, Gln3p1-653 , was also overexpressed in the arginine permease deficient mutants to determine whether the permeases have a synergistic effect on urea formation with other urea reducing modules...
March 13, 2018: World Journal of Microbiology & Biotechnology
Alejandro Balsa, Sadiq Lula, Lisa Marshall, Piotr Szczypa, Laraine Aikman
Biologic agents have demonstrated efficacy in treating patients with psoriatic arthritis (PsA). Biologic agents also have an intrinsic capacity to induce an immune response in patients that could result in unwanted adverse events and/or treatment failure. Areas covered: In this systematic literature review, the authors document the incidence of immune responses, primarily anti-drug antibodies (ADA), to the biologic therapeutic agents currently in clinical practice for the treatment of PsA. The authors discuss the importance of these responses with respect to clinical practice...
March 13, 2018: Expert Opinion on Biological Therapy
Ana Claudia Pompeu Raminelli, Valeria Romero, Mohammad H Semreen, Gislaine Ricci Leonardi
The clinical efficacy of the topical tretinoin is widely studied and has been well established for many therapeutic interventions, among some, photoaging, acne, and melasma. However, the side effects, mainly cutaneous irritation, erythema, xerosis and peeling, remain major obstacle to the patient compliance. Besides, the insight regarding the drug delivery profile is essential to understand the therapeutic action of the drug. Herein we highlight further advances and an update on tretinoin delivery systems such as liposomes, niosomes, solid lipid nanoparticles, nanostructured lipid carriers, cyclodextrins, nanostructured polymers and other technological systems that reduce its side effects and improve the permeation profile to potentiate efficacy and drug safety on the skin...
March 12, 2018: Current Medicinal Chemistry
Swee Sen Kwek, Satoru Watanabe, Kuan Rong Chan, Eugenia Z Ong, Hwee Cheng Tan, Wy Ching Ng, Mien T X Nguyen, Esther S Gan, Summer L Zhang, Kitti W K Chan, Jun Hao Tan, October M Sessions, Menchie Manuel, Julien Pompon, Camillus Chua, Sharifah Hazirah, Karl Tryggvason, Subhash G Vasudevan, Eng Eong Ooi
Zika virus (ZIKV) is a flavivirus that can cause congenital disease and requires development of an effective long-term preventative strategy. A replicative ZIKV vaccine with properties similar to the yellow fever 17D (YF17D) live-attenuated vaccine (LAV) would be advantageous, as a single dose of YF17D produces lifelong immunity. However, a replicative ZIKV vaccine must also be safe from causing persistent organ infections. Here we report an approach to ZIKV LAV development. We identify a ZIKV variant that produces small plaques due to interferon (IFN)-restricted viral propagation and displays attenuated infection of endothelial cells...
March 12, 2018: Nature Communications
Deanne Wong, Sebastian Morgan-Lynch
Patient portals enable people to access their health information electronically, but concerns about confidentiality and privacy breaches, particularly for young people, may be impeding portal adoption in New Zealand. This paper considers the legal and ethical framework relating to health information privacy and informed consent in New Zealand, and proposes an approach to implementing patient portals for young people. Shared portal access (where both a young person and their parent or guardian have access to the young person's portal) may be appropriate for young children whose parents or guardians are responsible for their health care...
December 2017: Journal of Primary Health Care
Gary B Wilkerson, Ashish Gupta, Marisa A Colston
Sport injuries restrict participation, impose a substantial economic burden, and can have persisting adverse effects on health-related quality of life. The effective use of Internet of Things (IoT), when combined with analytics approaches, can improve player safety through identification of injury risk factors that can be addressed by targeted risk reduction training activities. Use of IoT devices can facilitate highly efficient quantification of relevant functional capabilities prior to sport participation, which could substantially advance the prevailing sport injury management paradigm...
March 12, 2018: Risk Analysis: An Official Publication of the Society for Risk Analysis
Georgia Brown, Tilman Humpl
PURPOSE OF REVIEW: Pulmonary vascular disease (PVD) complicates the course of many cardiovascular, pulmonary and other systemic diseases in children. The physiological sequelae (pulmonary hypertension and elevated pulmonary vascular resistance) can overwhelm the right ventricle and lead to circulatory collapse. Despite the common end-point, the preceding pathophysiology is complex and variable and requires a tailored approach to diagnosis and management. In this article, we will review the most recent evidence and explore an approach to current controversies in the diagnosis and management of common or challenging patient subgroups...
March 9, 2018: Current Opinion in Pediatrics
Yevhen A Skalenko, Tetiana V Druzhenko, Aleksandr V Denisenko, Maryna V Samoilenko, Oleksandr P Dacenko, Serhii A Trofymchuk, Oleksandr O Grygorenko, Andrey A Tolmachev, Pavel K Mykhailiuk
A one-step synthesis of functionalized 3-azabicyclo[3.2.0]heptanes by [2+2]-photochemical intermolecular cycloaddition of N-benzylmaleimide to alkenes was elaborated. The obtained compounds were easily transformed into the bi- and tricyclic analogues of piperidine, morpholine, piperazine, and GABA, which are advanced building blocks for drug discovery.
March 12, 2018: Journal of Organic Chemistry
Paul Boes, Henrik Wilming, Jens Eisert, Rodrigo Gallego
Maximum-entropy ensembles are key primitives in statistical mechanics. Several approaches have been developed in order to justify the use of these ensembles in statistical descriptions. However, there is still no full consensus on the precise reasoning justifying the use of such ensembles. In this work, we provide an approach to derive maximum-entropy ensembles, taking a strictly operational perspective. We investigate the set of possible transitions that a system can undergo together with an environment, when one only has partial information about the system and its environment...
March 9, 2018: Nature Communications
Havva Keskin, Francesca Storici
A double-strand break (DSB) is one of the most dangerous DNA lesion, and its repair is crucial for genome stability. Homologous recombination is considered the safest way to repair a DNA DSB and requires an identical or nearly identical DNA template, such as a sister chromatid or a homologous chromosome for accurate repair. Can transcript RNA serve as donor template for DSB repair? Here, we describe an approach that we developed to detect and study DNA repair by transcript RNA. Key features of the method are: (i) use of antisense (noncoding) RNA as template for DSB repair by RNA, (ii) use of intron splicing to distinguish the sequence of the RNA template from that of the DNA that generates the RNA template, and (iii) use of a trans and cis system to study how RNA repairs a DSB in homologous but distant DNA or in its own DNA, respectively...
2018: Methods in Enzymology
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