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Odd L Gammelgaard, Mikkel G Terp, Birgitte Preiss, Henrik J Ditzel
Immunotherapy is one of the most promising cancer treatment modalities, but the lack of appropriate preclinical in vivo models hampers the development of novel immunotherapeutic strategies. Here, we studied the ability of transplanted human cancer cells to form primary tumors and metastasize in humanized immune system mice created by transfer of CD34+ human hematopoietic stem cells. All tested transplanted cancer cell lines developed primary tumors that progressed nearly synchronously. Spontaneous lung and liver metastases developed from both orthotopic and ectotopic transplanted cancer cells, and the ability to spread inversely correlated with the extent of CD8+ infiltration in the primary tumor...
August 18, 2018: Molecular Oncology
Steve Paulson, Paul Davies, Ard Louis, Lucianne Walkowicz
From the birth of galaxies to the self-organizing dynamics of our planet to the ongoing expansion of the universe, the more we discover about the evolution of the cosmos, the more acutely we realize the enormity of what remains to be known. Just this year astrophysicists at the University of Nottingham confirmed that there are at least two trillion galaxies in the cosmos, 10 times more than had been previously thought. What guidance or wisdom can the study of cosmology and astrophysics offer us in our search for meaning and purpose? In conversation with Steve Paulson, executive producer and host of To the Best of Our Knowledge, theoretical physicists Paul Davies and Ard Louis, and astrophysicist Lucianne Walkowicz share their perceptions based on years of gazing upward and beyond our own intimate planet...
August 18, 2018: Annals of the New York Academy of Sciences
Rouven Nagel, Walter Durka, Oliver Bossdorf, Anna Bucharova
The growing number of restoration projects worldwide increases the demand for seed material of native species. To meet this demand, seeds are often produced through large-scale cultivation on specialized farms, using wild-collected seeds as the original sources. However, during cultivation plants experience novel environmental conditions compared to those in natural populations, and there is a danger that the plants in cultivation are subject to unintended selection and lose their adaptation to natural habitats...
August 18, 2018: Plant Biology
Gina L Marchini, Tina M Arredondo, Mitchell B Cruzan
The potential for rapid evolution in invasive species makes them useful for studying adaptive responses of populations to novel environments. However, phenotypic divergence during invasion is not necessarily due to selection, but may be a product of neutral processes resulting from population bottlenecks during colonization and range expansion. We investigated phenotypic adaptation during the establishment and range expansion of the invasive bunchgrass, slender false brome (Brachypodium sylvaticum; Poaceae)...
August 18, 2018: Journal of Evolutionary Biology
Michael F Land
In animals with good eyesight most eye movements consist of saccades, which rapidly shift the direction of the eye's axis, and intervals between the saccades (fixations) in which gaze is kept stationary relative to the surroundings. This stability is needed to prevent motion blur, and it is achieved by reflexes which counter-rotate the eye when the head moves. This saccade-and-fixate strategy arose early in fish evolution, when the original function of saccades was to re-centre the eye as the fish turned. In primates, and other foveate vertebrates, saccades took on the new function of directing the fovea to objects of interest in the surroundings...
August 18, 2018: Current Topics in Behavioral Neurosciences
Caterina Vitale, Eva Kisdi
Under the threat of predation, a species of prey can evolve to its own extinction. Matsuda and Abrams (Theor Popul Biol 45:76-91, 1994a) found the earliest example of evolutionary suicide by demonstrating that the foraging effort of prey can evolve until its population dynamics cross a fold bifurcation, whereupon the prey crashes to extinction. We extend this model in three directions. First, we use critical function analysis to show that extinction cannot happen via increasing foraging effort. Second, we extend the model to non-equilibrium systems and demonstrate evolutionary suicide at a fold bifurcation of limit cycles...
August 17, 2018: Bulletin of Mathematical Biology
Ida Romano, Annalisa De Angelis, Annarita Poli, Pietro Ragni, Laura Lilla, Gianluigi Zito, Barbara Nicolaus, Anna Chiara De Luca, Paola Di Donato
Spores of the genus Bacillus are able to resist ionizing radiations and therefore they are a suitable biological model for studies in Astrobiology, i.e. the multidisciplinary approach to the study of the origin and evolution of life on Earth and in the universe. The resistance to γ-radiation is an important issue in Astrobiology in relation to the search for bacterial species that could adapt to life in space. This study investigates the resistance of spores of the thermophilic bacteria Parageobacillus thermantarcticus to γ-rays...
August 17, 2018: Extremophiles: Life Under Extreme Conditions
Michelina Pusceddu, Ignazio Floris, Alessandra Mura, Panagiotis Theodorou, Giorgia Cirotto, Giovanna Piluzza, Simonetta Bullitta, Alberto Angioni, Alberto Satta
Self-medication plays a major role in the behavioral defense against pathogens and parasites that animals have developed during evolution. The conditions defining this adaptive behavior are: (1) contact with the substance in question must be deliberate; (2) the substance must be detrimental to one or more parasites; (3) the detrimental effect on parasites must lead to increased host fitness. Recent studies have shown that A. mellifera colonies are able to increase resin foraging rates when infested by V. destructor, whereas further investigations are needed for evidence of parasite and host fitness...
August 17, 2018: Parasitology Research
W Druml
The central role of the organ system "gut" for critically ill patients has not been acknowledged until the last decade. The gut is a crucial immunologic, metabolic and neurologic organ system and impairment of its functions is associated with morbidity and mortality. The gut has a central position in the cross-talk between organs and dysfunction of the gut may result in impairment of other intra-abdominal and extra-abdominal organ systems. The intestinal tract is the most important source of endogenous infections and determines the inflammatory status of the organism...
August 17, 2018: Medizinische Klinik, Intensivmedizin und Notfallmedizin
Liliana M Dávalos, Winston C Lancaster, Miguel S Núñez-Novas, Yolanda M León, Bonnie Lei, Jon Flanders, Amy L Russell
Determining the processes responsible for phenotypic variation is one of the central tasks of evolutionary biology. While the importance of acoustic traits for foraging and communication in echolocating mammals suggests adaptation, the seldom-tested null hypothesis to explain trait divergence is genetic drift. Here we derive FST values from multi-locus coalescent isolation-with-migration models, and couple them with estimates of quantitative trait divergence, or PST , to test drift as the evolutionary process responsible for phenotypic divergence in island populations of the Pteronotus parnellii species complex...
August 17, 2018: Heredity
Alla Peselis, Alexander Serganov
The ykkC family of bacterial riboswitches combines several widespread classes that have similar secondary structures and consensus motifs but control different genes in response to different cellular metabolites. Here we report the crystal structures of two distinct ykkC riboswitches specifically bound to their cognate ligand ppGpp, a second messenger involved in stress response, or PRPP, a precursor in purine biosynthesis. Both RNAs adopt similar structures and contain a conserved core previously observed in the guanidine-specific ykkC riboswitch...
August 17, 2018: Nature Chemical Biology
Valeriu Balaban, Sean Lim, Gaurav Gupta, James Boedicker, Paul Bogdan
From microbial communities to cancer cells, many such complex collectives embody emergent and self-organising behaviour. Such behaviour drives cells to develop composite features such as formation of aggregates or expression of specific genes as a result of cell-cell interactions within a cell population. Currently, we lack universal mathematical tools for analysing the collective behaviour of biological swarms. To address this, we propose a multifractal inspired framework to measure the degree of emergence and self-organisation from scarce spatial (geometric) data and apply it to investigate the evolution of the spatial arrangement of Enterobacter cloacae aggregates...
August 17, 2018: Scientific Reports
Antonio Charlys da Costa, Adriana Luchs, Flavio Augusto de Pádua Milagres, Shirley Vasconcelos Komninakis, Danielle Elise Gill, Márcia Cristina Alves Brito Sayão Lobato, Rafael Brustulin, Rogério Togisaki das Chagas, Maria de Fátima Neves Dos Santos Abrão, Cassia Vitória de Deus Alves Soares, Xutao Deng, Ester Cerdeira Sabino, Eric Delwart, Élcio Leal
In the present article we report the nearly full length genome of a Cosavirus strain (BRTO-83) isolated from a child with acute gastroenteritis, and who is an inhabitant of a rural area in the central region of Brazil. The sample was previously screened and negative for both: common enteric viruses (i.e. rotavirus and norovirus), bacteria, endoparasites and helminthes. Evolutionary analysis and phylogenetic inferences indicated that the Brazilian BRTO-83 Cosavirus strain was a recombinant virus highly related to the E/D recombinant NG385 strain (Genbank JN867757), which was isolated in Nigeria from an acute flaccid paralysis patient...
August 17, 2018: Scientific Reports
Zhi-Yi Zhang, He-Min Zhang, De-Sheng Li, Tie-Yi Xiong, Sheng-Guo Fang
β-Defensins are small antimicrobial proteins expressed in various organisms and have great potential for improving animal health and selective breeding programs. Giant pandas have a distinctive lineage in Carnivora, and it is unclear whether β-defensin genes have experienced different selective pressures during giant panda evolution. We therefore characterized the giant panda (Ailuropoda melanoleuca) β-defensin gene family through gap filling, TBLASTN, and HMM searches. Among 36 β-defensins identified, gastrointestinal disease may induce the expression of the DEFB1 and DEFB139 genes in the digestive system...
August 17, 2018: Scientific Reports
Ángel López-Nicolás, Michal Stoklosa
OBJECTIVES: The European Commission has formally opened a process of revision of its tobacco tax directive. The purpose of this study is to analyse the evolution of cigarette and roll-your-own (RYO) tobacco prices in order to identify avenues for the improvement of public health goals. METHODS: Pooled cross-sectional data on prices and taxes on cigarettes and RYO tobacco in the Member States over 2004-2015 is used to track the distributions of the most popular price category and the weighted average price of these products and to relate them to the underlying tax structure...
August 17, 2018: Tobacco Control
Zhiying Wang, Pan Li, Lixin Luo, David J Simpson, Michael G Gänzle
DaQu is a spontaneous solid state cereal fermentation used as saccharification and starter culture in Chinese vinegar and liquor production. The evolution of microbiota in this spontaneous fermentation is controlled by the temperature profile which reaches temperatures from 50 to 65 °C for several days. Despite these high temperatures, mesophilic Enterobacteriaceae including Cronobacter and bacilli are present throughout the DaQu fermentation. This study aimed to determine whether DaQu spontaneous solid state fermentation selects for the heat resistant variants of these organisms...
August 17, 2018: Applied and Environmental Microbiology
Kimberly Chow, Constance Dahlin
OBJECTIVE: To describe the evolution of oncology and palliative nursing in meeting the changing landscape of cancer care. DATA SOURCES: Peer-reviewed articles, clinical practice guidelines, professional organization, and position statements. CONCLUSION: Nurses have been at the forefront of efforts to develop and implement oncology and palliative care programs. Fifty years ago a cancer diagnosis meant a poor prognosis, high symptom burden, and disease uncertainty...
August 14, 2018: Seminars in Oncology Nursing
Weijie Bai, Zhijia Wang, Pu Sun, Jing Zhang, Huifang Bao, Yimei Cao, Yanyan Chang, Zaixin Liu, Dong Li, Zengjun Lu
BACKGROUND: Porcine reproductive and respiratory syndrome (PRRS) is a severe disease, causing great economic losses to the pig industry. The causative agent, porcine reproductive and respiratory syndrome virus (PRRSV) is highly variable. Since the emergence of highly pathogenic PRRSV (HP-PRRSV) in China in 2006, this virus strain has undergone extensive variation. To investigate the genetic variation and pathogenicity of currently isolated PRRSV GSWW/2015 strain, its whole genome was sequenced and analyzed for the specific variation in NSP2, GP3 and GP5 regions...
August 17, 2018: BMC Veterinary Research
Adouda Adjiri
BACKGROUND: Cancer is a defiant disease which cure is still far from being attained besides the colossal efforts and financial means deployed towards that end. The continuing setbacks encountered with today's arsenal of anti-cancer drugs and cancer therapy modalities; show the need for a radical approach in order to get to the root of the problem. And getting to the root of cancer initiation and development leads us to challenge the present dogmas surrounding the pathogenesis of this disease...
August 17, 2018: BMC Cancer
Katharine Page, Jeremy Shaffer, Samuel Lin, Mark Zhang, Jane May Liu
Riboswitches, non-coding RNAs that bind a small molecule effector to control gene expression at the level of transcription or translation, are uniquely suited to meet challenges in synthetic biology. To expand the limited set of existing riboswitches, we developed a riboswitch discovery platform that couples dual genetic selection and fluorescence-activated cell sorting to identify novel riboswitches from a 108 random-sequence library in which the aptamer domain of the ThiM#2 riboswitch was replaced with an N40 sequence...
August 17, 2018: ACS Synthetic Biology
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