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Ancient history

Marco Cavarzere
This paper focuses on the shift that occurred in the spatial representation of states in the eighteenth century. This shift will be considered as a combination of institutional reforms and of a new social awareness of space. A consideration of the case of the Italian Piedmont will demonstrate how "national" space was created through antiquarian research and how a larger political confrontation took place in the guise of a learned debate. The diverse accounts of Piedmontese history under examination all employed methods derived from previous ages, relying upon a concept of space as historically continuous, embedded in time immemorial...
2016: Journal of the History of Ideas
Peter T Struck
Ancient Greeks drew advice from oracles, dreams, entrails, the movements of birds, sneezes, and myriad other sources for divination. Classicists typically study such phenomena as examples of occult religion, or for their use as a social mechanism for managing dissent and forging consensus. Ancient philosophical accounts by contrast go a longer way toward considering them seriously, on their own terms. They take them as an invitation into developing speculative accounts of non-standard epistemological schemes...
2016: Journal of the History of Ideas
Julien Soubrier, Graham Gower, Kefei Chen, Stephen M Richards, Bastien Llamas, Kieren J Mitchell, Simon Y W Ho, Pavel Kosintsev, Michael S Y Lee, Gennady Baryshnikov, Ruth Bollongino, Pere Bover, Joachim Burger, David Chivall, Evelyne Crégut-Bonnoure, Jared E Decker, Vladimir B Doronichev, Katerina Douka, Damien A Fordham, Federica Fontana, Carole Fritz, Jan Glimmerveen, Liubov V Golovanova, Colin Groves, Antonio Guerreschi, Wolfgang Haak, Tom Higham, Emilia Hofman-Kamińska, Alexander Immel, Marie-Anne Julien, Johannes Krause, Oleksandra Krotova, Frauke Langbein, Greger Larson, Adam Rohrlach, Amelie Scheu, Robert D Schnabel, Jeremy F Taylor, Małgorzata Tokarska, Gilles Tosello, Johannes van der Plicht, Ayla van Loenen, Jean-Denis Vigne, Oliver Wooley, Ludovic Orlando, Rafał Kowalczyk, Beth Shapiro, Alan Cooper
The two living species of bison (European and American) are among the few terrestrial megafauna to have survived the late Pleistocene extinctions. Despite the extensive bovid fossil record in Eurasia, the evolutionary history of the European bison (or wisent, Bison bonasus) before the Holocene (<11.7 thousand years ago (kya)) remains a mystery. We use complete ancient mitochondrial genomes and genome-wide nuclear DNA surveys to reveal that the wisent is the product of hybridization between the extinct steppe bison (Bison priscus) and ancestors of modern cattle (aurochs, Bos primigenius) before 120 kya, and contains up to 10% aurochs genomic ancestry...
October 18, 2016: Nature Communications
Stephen W Stein, Charles G Thiel
In 1956, Riker Laboratories, Inc., (now 3 M Drug Delivery Systems) introduced the first pressurized metered dose inhaler (MDI). In many respects, the introduction of the MDI marked the beginning of the modern pharmaceutical aerosol industry. The MDI was the first truly portable and convenient inhaler that effectively delivered drug to the lung and quickly gained widespread acceptance. Since 1956, the pharmaceutical aerosol industry has experienced dramatic growth. The signing of the Montreal Protocol in 1987 led to a surge in innovation that resulted in the diversification of inhaler technologies with significantly enhanced delivery efficiency, including modern MDIs, dry powder inhalers, and nebulizer systems...
October 17, 2016: Journal of Aerosol Medicine and Pulmonary Drug Delivery
Katelyn M Mika, Vincent J Lynch
Variation in female reproductive traits, such as fertility, fecundity, and fecundability, is heritable in humans, but identifying and functionally characterizing genetic variants associated with these traits has been challenging. Here, we explore the functional significance and evolutionary history of a T/C polymorphism of SNP rs2071473, which we have previously shown is an eQTL for TAP2 and significantly associated with fecundability (time to pregnancy). We replicated the association between the rs2071473 genotype and TAP2 expression by using GTEx data and demonstrated that TAP2 is expressed by decidual stromal cells at the maternal-fetal interface...
September 24, 2016: American Journal of Human Genetics
Nadia Amanzougaghene, Kosta Y Mumcuoglu, Florence Fenollar, Shir Alfi, Gonca Yesilyurt, Didier Raoult, Oleg Mediannikov
The human head louse, Pediculus humanus capitis, is subdivided into several significantly divergent mitochondrial haplogroups, each with particular geographical distributions. Historically, they are among the oldest human parasites, representing an excellent marker for tracking older events in human evolutionary history. In this study, ancient DNA analysis using real-time polymerase chain reaction (qPCR), combined with conventional PCR, was applied to the remains of twenty-four ancient head lice and their eggs from the Roman period which were recovered from Israel...
2016: PloS One
Romain A Studer, Ricard A Rodriguez-Mias, Kelsey M Haas, Joanne I Hsu, Cristina Viéitez, Carme Solé, Danielle L Swaney, Lindsay B Stanford, Ivan Liachko, René Böttcher, Maitreya J Dunham, Eulàlia de Nadal, Francesc Posas, Pedro Beltrao, Judit Villén
Living organisms have evolved protein phosphorylation, a rapid and versatile mechanism that drives signaling and regulates protein function. We report the phosphoproteomes of 18 fungal species and a phylogenetic-based approach to study phosphosite evolution. We observe rapid divergence, with only a small fraction of phosphosites conserved over hundreds of millions of years. Relative to recently acquired phosphosites, ancient sites are enriched at protein interfaces and are more likely to be functionally important, as we show for sites on H2A1 and eIF4E...
October 14, 2016: Science
Akitsugu Konno, Teresa Romero, Miho Inoue-Murayama, Atsuko Saito, Toshikazu Hasegawa
Domestic dogs (Canis familiaris) have developed a close relationship with humans through the process of domestication. In human-dog interactions, eye contact is a key element of relationship initiation and maintenance. Previous studies have suggested that canine ability to produce human-directed communicative signals is influenced by domestication history, from wolves to dogs, as well as by recent breed selection for particular working purposes. To test the genetic basis for such abilities in purebred dogs, we examined gazing behavior towards humans using two types of behavioral experiments: the 'visual contact task' and the 'unsolvable task'...
2016: PloS One
Eve Rannamäe, Lembi Lõugas, Camilla F Speller, Heiki Valk, Liina Maldre, Jarosław Wilczyński, Aleksandr Mikhailov, Urmas Saarma
Although sheep (Ovis aries) have been one of the most exploited domestic animals in Estonia since the Late Bronze Age, relatively little is known about their genetic history. Here, we explore temporal changes in Estonian sheep populations and their mitochondrial genetic diversity over the last 3000 years. We target a 558 base pair fragment of the mitochondrial hypervariable region in 115 ancient sheep from 71 sites in Estonia (c. 1200 BC-AD 1900s), 19 ancient samples from Latvia, Russia, Poland and Greece (6800 BC-AD 1700), as well as 44 samples of modern Kihnu native sheep breed...
2016: PloS One
HyunJung Kim, Janelle Jung, Namrata Singh, Anthony Greenberg, Jeff J Doyle, Wricha Tyagi, Jong-Wook Chung, Jennifer Kimball, Ruaraidh Sackville Hamilton, Susan R McCouch
BACKGROUND: Understanding population structure of the wild progenitor of Asian cultivated rice (O. sativa), the Oryza rufipogon species complex (ORSC), is of interest to plant breeders and contributes to our understanding of rice domestication. A collection of 286 diverse ORSC accessions was evaluated for nuclear variation using genotyping-by-sequencing (113,739 SNPs) and for chloroplast variation using Sanger sequencing (25 polymorphic sites). RESULTS: Six wild subpopulations were identified, with 25 % of accessions classified as admixed...
December 2016: Rice
Alan O Marron, Sarah Ratcliffe, Glen L Wheeler, Raymond E Goldstein, Nicole King, Fabrice Not, Colomban de Vargas, Daniel J Richter
Biosilicification (the formation of biological structures from silica) occurs in diverse eukaryotic lineages, plays a major role in global biogeochemical cycles and has significant biotechnological applications. Silicon (Si) uptake is crucial for biosilicification, yet the evolutionary history of the transporters involved remains poorly known. Recent evidence suggests that the SIT family of Si transporters, initially identified in diatoms, may be widely distributed, with an extended family of related transporters (SIT-Ls) present in some non-silicified organisms...
October 11, 2016: Molecular Biology and Evolution
Catherine Thèves, Eric Crubézy, Philippe Biagini
Smallpox is considered among the most devastating of human diseases. Its spread in populations, initiated for thousands of years following a probable transmission from an animal host, was concomitant with movements of people across regions and continents, trade and wars. Literature permitted to retrace the occurrence of epidemics from ancient times to recent human history, smallpox having affected all levels of past society including famous monarchs. The disease was officially declared eradicated in 1979 following intensive vaccination campaigns...
August 2016: Microbiology Spectrum
Helen D Donoghue
Tuberculosis is a significant global disease today, so understanding its origins and history is important. It is primarily a lung infection and is transmitted by infectious aerosols from person to person, so a high population density encourages its spread. The causative organism is Mycobacterium tuberculosis, an obligate pathogen in the M. tuberculosis complex that also contains closely related species, such as Mycobacterium bovis, that primarily infect animals. Typical bone lesions occur in about 5% of untreated infections...
August 2016: Microbiology Spectrum
Emmanouil Angelakis, Yassina Bechah, Didier Raoult
Epidemic typhus caused by Rickettsia prowazekii is one of the oldest pestilential diseases of humankind. The disease is transmitted to human beings by the body louse Pediculus humanus corporis and is still considered a major threat by public health authorities, despite the efficacy of antibiotics, because poor sanitary conditions are conducive to louse proliferation. Epidemic typhus has accompanied disasters that impact humanity and has arguably determined the outcome of more wars than have soldiers and generals...
August 2016: Microbiology Spectrum
M Trimble, E H Reynolds
In this paper we discuss the history of hysteria from the Babylonian and Assyrian texts through to the situation as it appears to us at the end of the 19th century. We note the shifting emphasis on causation, earlier ideas being linked to uterine theories, later speculations moving to the brain, and then the mind. We note the persistence of the condition referred to as hysteria over the millennia and the fascination that the condition has held for physicians, neurologists, and psychiatrists since the origins of known medical texts...
2017: Handbook of Clinical Neurology
Jürgen Schmitz, Angela Noll, Carsten A Raabe, Gennady Churakov, Reinhard Voss, Martin Kiefmann, Timofey Rozhdestvensky, Jürgen Brosius, Robert Baertsch, Hiram Clawson, Christian Roos, Aleksey Zimin, Patrick Minx, Michael J Montague, Richard K Wilson, Wesley C Warren
Tarsiers are phylogenetically located between the most basal strepsirrhines and the most derived anthropoid primates. While they share morphological features with both groups, they also possess uncommon primate characteristics, rendering their evolutionary history somewhat obscure. To investigate the molecular basis of such attributes, we present here a new genome assembly of the Philippine tarsier (Tarsius syrichta), and provide extended analyses of the genome and detailed history of transposable element insertion events...
October 6, 2016: Nature Communications
D A Stolper, M L Bender, G B Dreyfus, Y Yan, J A Higgins
The history of atmospheric O2 partial pressures (Po2) is inextricably linked to the coevolution of life and Earth's biogeochemical cycles. Reconstructions of past Po2 rely on models and proxies but often markedly disagree. We present a record of Po2 reconstructed using O2/N2 ratios from ancient air trapped in ice. This record indicates that Po2 declined by 7 per mil (0.7%) over the past 800,000 years, requiring that O2 sinks were ~2% larger than sources. This decline is consistent with changes in burial and weathering fluxes of organic carbon and pyrite driven by either Neogene cooling or increasing Pleistocene erosion rates...
September 23, 2016: Science
Kate Rockenbach, Justin C Havird, J Grey Monroe, Deborah A Triant, Douglas R Taylor, Daniel B Sloan
Rates of sequence evolution in plastid genomes are generally low, but numerous angiosperm lineages exhibit accelerated evolutionary rates in similar subsets of plastid genes. These genes include clpP1 and accD, which encode components of the caseinolytic protease (CLP) and acetyl-coA carboxylase (ACCase) complexes, respectively. Whether these extreme and repeated accelerations in rates of plastid genome evolution result from adaptive change in proteins (i.e., positive selection) or simply a loss of functional constraint (i...
October 5, 2016: Genetics
Rudolf Cesaretti, José Lobo, Luís M A Bettencourt, Scott G Ortman, Michael E Smith
Medieval European urbanization presents a line of continuity between earlier cities and modern European urban systems. Yet, many of the spatial, political and economic features of medieval European cities were particular to the Middle Ages, and subsequently changed over the Early Modern Period and Industrial Revolution. There is a long tradition of demographic studies estimating the population sizes of medieval European cities, and comparative analyses of these data have shed much light on the long-term evolution of urban systems...
2016: PloS One
Christopher T Dee, Raghavendar T Nagaraju, Emmanouil I Athanasiadis, Caroline Gray, Laura Fernandez Del Ama, Simon A Johnston, Christopher J Secombes, Ana Cvejic, Adam F L Hurlstone
CD4(+) T cells are at the nexus of the innate and adaptive arms of the immune system. However, little is known about the evolutionary history of CD4(+) T cells, and it is unclear whether their differentiation into specialized subsets is conserved in early vertebrates. In this study, we have created transgenic zebrafish with vibrantly labeled CD4(+) cells allowing us to scrutinize the development and specialization of teleost CD4(+) leukocytes in vivo. We provide further evidence that CD4(+) macrophages have an ancient origin and had already emerged in bony fish...
September 30, 2016: Journal of Immunology: Official Journal of the American Association of Immunologists
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