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Kondwani R Msangosoko, Mark A Boetel
The sugarbeet root maggot, Tetanops myopaeformis Röder (Diptera: Ulidiidae), is native to North America. However, its primary crop host, sugarbeet, Beta vulgaris L., was introduced to the continent from Europe in the late 19th century. This field and greenhouse research was conducted to compare the relative attractiveness of eight cultivated and wild plant species for oviposition by T. myopaeformis, and the suitability of these potential host plants for larval development to elucidate the potential native and current host range of this pest...
March 19, 2018: Environmental Entomology
Reid Tingley, Georgia Ward-Fear, Lin Schwarzkopf, Matthew J Greenlees, Benjamin L Phillips, Gregory Brown, Simon Clulow, Jonathan Webb, Robert Capon, Andy Sheppard, Tanja Strive, Mark Tizard, Richard Shine
Our best hope of developing innovative methods to combat invasive species is likely to come from the study of high-profile invaders that have attracted intensive research not only into control, but also basic biology. Here we illustrate that point by reviewing current thinking about novel ways to control one of the world’s most well-studied invasions: that of the cane toad in Australia. Recently developed methods for population suppression include more effective traps based on the toad’s acoustic and pheromonal biology...
June 2017: Quarterly Review of Biology
Daniela Hulcová, Kateřina Breiterová, Tomáš Siatka, Kamila Klímová, Lara Davani, Marcela Šafratová, Anna Hošťálková, Angela De Simone, Vincenza Andrisano, Lucie Cahlíková
Glycogen synthase kinase-3β (GSK-3β) is a multifunctional serine/threonine protein kinase that was originally identified as an enzyme involved in the control of glycogen metabolism. It plays a key role in diverse physiological processes including metabolism, the cell cycle, and gene expression by regulating a wide variety of well-known substances like glycogen synthase, tau-protein, and β-catenin. Recent studies have identified GSK-3β as a potential therapeutic target in Alzheimer´s disease, bipolar disorder, stroke, more than 15 types of cancer, and diabetes...
March 21, 2018: Molecules: a Journal of Synthetic Chemistry and Natural Product Chemistry
Haibo Tang, Junming Luo, Xin Long Tian, Yuanyuan Dong, Jing Li, Mingrui Liu, Lina Liu, Huiyu Song, Shijun Liao
Developing cheap and stable electrocatalysts to replace Pt for the oxygen reduction reaction (ORR) is recognized as the key factor to achieve the large-scale application of fuel cells. In this paper, 3D porous Co-doped vanadium nitride (VN) nanosheet-assembled microflowers are prepared with a facile solvothermal approach followed by nitridation at 500°C in NH3. It is found that the microflower morphology and the Co doping both significantly enhance the ORR performance of the materials. Since the unique 3D porous structure provides higher specific surface area and more active sites as well as enriching the d electrons of V via doping, Co also improves the intrinsic activity of VN...
March 21, 2018: ACS Applied Materials & Interfaces
Cheng-Yu Shih, René Streubel, Johannes Heberle, Alexander Letzel, Maxim V Shugaev, Chengping Wu, Michael Schmidt, Bilal Gökce, Stephan Barcikowski, Leonid V Zhigilei
The synthesis of chemically clean and environmentally friendly nanoparticles through pulsed laser ablation in liquids has shown a number of advantages over conventional chemical synthesis methods and has evolved into a thriving research field attracting laboratory and industrial applications. The fundamental understanding of processes leading to the nanoparticle generation, however, still remains elusive. In particular, the origin of bimodal nanoparticle size distributions in femto- and picosecond laser ablation in liquids, where small nanoparticles (several nanometers) with narrow size distribution are commonly observed to coexist with larger (tens to hundreds of nanometers) ones, has not been explained so far...
March 21, 2018: Nanoscale
Andrea I Guaricci, Delia De Santis, Mark G Rabbat, Gianluca Pontone
: Implantable cardioverter defibrillators (ICDs) have proven to be the most effective preventive therapy of sudden cardiac death (SCD). Based on current guidelines, the indication for prophylactic ICD therapy is primarily based on a left ventricular ejection fraction (LVEF) less than 35%. However, patients with low LVEF may never have an arrhythmic event while patients with normal to moderately reduced LVEF, who are traditionally felt to be at lower risk, can experience SCD. Therefore, LVEF alone is not an ideal risk stratification parameter to determine ICD therapy...
March 19, 2018: Journal of Cardiovascular Medicine
Ming Zheng, Fang-Yuan Chen, Jia-Nan Tian, Qing-Jiang Pan
To provide deep insight into cation-cation interactions (CCIs) involving hexavalent actinyl species that are major components in spent nuclear fuel and pose important implications for the effective removal of radiotoxic pollutants in the environment, a series of homo- and heterobimetallic actinide complexes supported by cyclopentadienyl (Cp) and polypyrrolic macrocycle (H4 L) ligands were systematically investigated using relativistic density functional theory. The metal sort in both parts of (THF)(H2 L)(OAnVI O) and (An')III Cp3 from U to Np to Pu, as well as the substituent bonding to Cp from electron-donating Me to H to electron-withdrawing Cl, SiH3 , and SiMe3 , was changed...
March 21, 2018: Inorganic Chemistry
Xiaowei Wu, Shang Zheng, Yuanzhou Ye, Yuchen Wu, Kaili Lin, Jiansheng Su
The reconstruction of bone defects by guiding autologous bone tissue regeneration with artificial biomaterials is a potential strategy in the area of bone tissue engineering. The development of new polymers with good biocompatibility, favorable mechanical properties, and osteoinductivity is of vital importance. Graphene and its derivatives have attracted extensive interests due to the exceptional physiochemical and biological properties of graphene. In this study, poly(lactic-co-glycolic acid) (PLGA) films incorporated by graphene nanoplates were fabricated...
March 21, 2018: Biomaterials Science
Xuechuan Gao, Ruixue Cui, Guanfeng Ji, Zhiliang Liu
Benefiting from their porous structures, metal-organic frameworks (MOFs) have attracted intensive attention for use in drug release. However, the controllable synthesis of MOFs with proper particle sizes is still very challenging, which largely limits its applications. Here, UIO-66-NH2 with controlled particle sizes in the range of 20-200 nm has been achieved successfully. The amine on UIO-66-NH2 is demonstrated for the feasible post-modifying of UIO-66-NH2 to obtain multifunctional MOFs, overcoming the limitations of functional simplicity and broadening the range of applications...
March 21, 2018: Nanoscale
Claire O'Callaghan, Julie M Hall, Alessandro Tomassini, Alana J Muller, Ishan C Walpola, Ahmed A Moustafa, James M Shine, Simon J G Lewis
BACKGROUND: Models of hallucinations emphasize imbalance between sensory input and top-down influences over perception, as false perceptual inference can arise when top-down predictions are afforded too much precision (certainty) relative to sensory evidence. Visual hallucinations in Parkinson's disease (PD) are associated with lower-level visual and attentional impairments, accompanied by overactivity in higher-order association brain networks. PD therefore provides an attractive framework to explore contributions of bottom-up versus top-down disturbances in hallucinations...
November 2017: Biological Psychiatry: Cognitive Neuroscience and Neuroimaging
Andrea Ottolenghi, Klaus-Rüdiger Trott, Vere Smyth
PURPOSE: A review is presented of the programme of education and training set up within the DoReMi Network of Excellence. DoReMi was funded by Euratom under the EU 7th Framework Programme to coordinate the EU research into risks from low-dose ionising radiation. It was seen to be necessary to form a network of expert institutions in order to tackle the scientific questions with the resources available. From the start, importance was given to the need to stimulate and support education and training to build up the capability of the research community...
March 21, 2018: International Journal of Radiation Biology
Feng Liu, Priyatanu Roy, Qi Shao, Chunlan Jiang, Jeunghwan Choi, Connie Chung, Dushyant Mehra, Dr John Bischof
Atrial fibrillation affects millions of people in the US. Focal therapy is an attractive treatment for atrial fibrillation that avoids the debilitating effects of drugs for disease control. Perhaps the most widely used focal therapy for atrial fibrillation (AF) is heat-based radiofrequency (heating), although cryotherapy (cryo) is rapidly replacing it due to a reduction in side effects and positive clinical outcomes. A third focal therapy, irreversible electroporation (IRE), is also being considered. This study was designed to help guide treatment thresholds and compare mechanism of action across heating, cryo, and IRE...
February 17, 2018: Journal of Biomechanical Engineering
Shabnam Sadeghi Esfahlani, Tommy Thompson, Ali Davod Parsa, Ian Brown, Silvia Cirstea
This paper proposes the use of a non-immersive virtual reality rehabilitation system "ReHabgame" developed using Microsoft Kinect™ and the Thalmic™ Labs Myo gesture control armband. The ReHabgame was developed based on two third-person video games that provide a feasible possibility of assessing postural control and functional reach tests. It accurately quantifies specific postural control mechanisms including timed standing balance, functional reach tests using real-time anatomical landmark orientation, joint velocity, and acceleration while end trajectories were calculated using an inverse kinematics algorithm...
February 2018: Heliyon
Abdelilah Benallou, Habib El Alaoui El Abdallaoui, Hocine Garmes
The mechanism nature of the intramolecular Diels-Alder reaction has been performed; and thus, the changes of C-C bond forming/breaking along IRC are characterized in this study. Conceptual DFT analyses of the most favorable adduct fused/exo shows that the flux electronic will take place from diene to dienophile moiety. Moreover, ELF topological analysis based on the electron density predicts that C-C bond is formed by the coupling of two pseudoradical centers generated at the most significant atoms of the molecules...
February 2018: Heliyon
Lilong Zhang, Keli Chen, Liang He, Lincai Peng
Background: Pyrolysis has attracted growing interest as a versatile means to convert biomass into valuable products. Wheat straw has been considered to be a promising biomass resource due to its low price and easy availability. However, most of the products obtained from wheat straw pyrolysis are usually of low quality. Hot soda extraction has the advantage of selective dissolution of lignin whilst retaining the carbohydrates. This can selectively convert biomass into high-quality desired products and suppress the formation of undesirable products...
2018: Biotechnology for Biofuels
Marilia N N Lima, Cleber C Melo-Filho, Gustavo C Cassiano, Bruno J Neves, Vinicius M Alves, Rodolpho C Braga, Pedro V L Cravo, Eugene N Muratov, Juliana Calit, Daniel Y Bargieri, Fabio T M Costa, Carolina H Andrade
Malaria is a life-threatening infectious disease caused by parasites of the genus Plasmodium , affecting more than 200 million people worldwide every year and leading to about a half million deaths. Malaria parasites of humans have evolved resistance to all current antimalarial drugs, urging for the discovery of new effective compounds. Given that the inhibition of deoxyuridine triphosphatase of Plasmodium falciparum ( Pf dUTPase) induces wrong insertions in plasmodial DNA and consequently leading the parasite to death, this enzyme is considered an attractive antimalarial drug target...
2018: Frontiers in Pharmacology
Laura Pérez-Benito, Henrik Keränen, Herman van Vlijmen, Gary Tresadern
A congeneric series of 21 phosphodiesterase 2 (PDE2) inhibitors are reported. Crystal structures show how the molecules can occupy a 'top-pocket' of the active site. Molecules with small substituents do not enter the pocket, a critical leucine (Leu770) is closed and water molecules are present. Large substituents enter the pocket, opening the Leu770 conformation and displacing the waters. We also report an X-ray structure revealing a new conformation of the PDE2 active site domain. The relative binding affinities of these compounds were studied with free energy perturbation (FEP) methods and it represents an attractive real-world test case...
March 20, 2018: Scientific Reports
Jianli Wang, Zhizheng Wu, Chengkun Mao, Yunfeng Zhao, Juekuan Yang, Yunfei Chen
The electrical and thermal properties of metallic nanostructures have attracted considerable fundamental and technological interests. Recent studies confirmed a dramatic decrease in the electrical and thermal conductivities when the dimension is comparable or even smaller than the electron mean free path. However, the verification of the Wiedemann-Franz law in these nanostructures remains hotly debated. The Lorenz number obtained from the two-probe measurement is found to be much larger than that from the four-probe measurement...
March 20, 2018: Scientific Reports
Joseph M Varberg, Isabelle Coppens, Gustavo Arrizabalaga, Rajshekhar Y Gaji
In the protozoan parasite Toxoplasma gondii , protein kinases have been shown to play key roles in regulating parasite motility, invasion, replication, egress, and survival within the host. The tyrosine kinase-like (TKL) family of proteins are an unexplored set of kinases in Toxoplasma Of the eight annotated TKLs in the Toxoplasma genome, a recent genome-wide loss-of-function screen showed that six are important for tachyzoite fitness. By utilizing an endogenous tagging approach, we showed that these six T...
March 20, 2018: MBio
Vladimíra Datinská, Ivona Voráčová, Jan Berka, František Foret
Sample preparation plays an important role in the DNA analysis workflow. Real samples often include a complex matrix, such as blood and other bodily fluids, or exogenous impurities, e.g., from the scene of crime. Most of the common nucleic acids isolation techniques are based on extractions; however, isotachophoretic focusing has recently attracted some interest for its simplicity and potential for very high enrichment factors and ease of automation. Here, we report on the use of a commercial isotachophoretic instrument for optimization of DNA focusing and preparative fraction collection...
March 15, 2018: Journal of Chromatography. A
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