Search for Eccentric Binary Black Hole Mergers with Advanced LIGO and Advanced Virgo during Their First and Second Observing Runs

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    When formed through dynamical interactions, stellar-mass binary black holes may retain eccentric orbits (e>0.1e>0.1 at 10 Hz) detectable by ground-based gravitational-wave detectors. Eccentricity can therefore be used to differentiate dynamically-formed binaries from isolated binary black hole mergers. Current template-based gravitational-wave searches do not use waveform models associated to eccentric orbits, rendering the search less efficient to eccentric binary systems. Here we present results of a search for binary black hole mergers that inspiral in eccentric orbits using data from the first and second observing runs (O1 and O2) of Advanced LIGO and Advanced Virgo. The search uses minimal assumptions on the morphology of the transient gravitational waveform. We show that it is sensitive to binary mergers with a detection range that is weakly dependent on eccentricity for all bound systems. Our search did not identify any new binary merger candidates. We interpret these results in light of eccentric binary formation models

    Shifted quantum affine algebras: integral forms in type AA

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    We define an integral form of shifted quantum affine algebras of type A and construct Poincaré–Birkhoff–Witt–Drinfeld bases for them. When the shift is trivial, our integral form coincides with the RTT integral form. We prove that these integral forms are closed with respect to the coproduct and shift homomorphisms. We prove that the homomorphism from our integral form to the corresponding quantized K-theoretic Coulomb branch of a quiver gauge theory is always surjective. In one particular case we identify this Coulomb branch with the extended quantum universal enveloping algebra of type A. Finally, we obtain the rational (homological) analogues of the above results [proved earlier in Kamnitzer et al. (Proc Am Math Soc 146(2):861–874, 2018a; On category O for affine Grassmannian slices and categorified tensor products.arXiv:1806.07519, 2018b) via different techniques]

    Social rank overrides environmental and community fluctuations in determining meat access by female chimpanzees in the Taï National Park, Côte d’Ivoire

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    Meat, long hypothesized as an important food source in human evolution, is still a substantial component of the modern human diet, with some humans relying entirely on meat during certain times of the year. Understanding the socio-ecological context leading to the successful acquisition and consumption of meat by chimpanzees (Pan troglodytes), our closest living relative, can provide insight into the emergence of this trait because humans and chimpanzees are unusual among primates in that they both (i) hunt mammalian prey, (ii) share meat with community members, and (iii) form long-term relationships and complex social hierarchies within their communities. However, females in both human hunter-gatherer societies as well as chimpanzee groups rarely hunt, instead typically accessing meat via males that share meat with group members. In general, female chimpanzee dominance rank affects feeding competition, but so far, the effect of female dominance rank on meat access found different results within and across studied chimpanzee groups. Here we contribute to the debate on how female rank influences meat access while controlling for several socio-ecological variables. Multivariate analyses of 773 separate meat-eating events collected over more than 25 years from two chimpanzee communities located in the Taï National Park, Côte d’Ivoire, were used to test the importance of female dominance rank for being present at, and for acquiring meat, during meat-eating events. We found that high-ranking females were more likely to be present during a meat-eating event and, in addition, were more likely to eat meat compared to the subordinates. These findings were robust to both large demographic changes (decrease of community size) and seasonal ecological changes (fruit abundance dynamics). In addition to social rank, we found that other female properties had a positive influence on presence to meat-eating events and access to meat given presence, including oestrus status, nursing of a small infant, and age. Similar to findings in other chimpanzee populations, our results suggest that females reliably acquire meat over their lifetime despite rarely being active hunters. The implication of this study supports the hypothesis that dominance rank is an important female chimpanzee property conferring benefits for the high-ranking females

    Genome-wide SNP typing of ancient DNA: Determination of hair and eye color of Bronze Age humans from their skeletal remains.

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    Objective A genome-wide high-throughput single nucleotide polymorphism (SNP) typing method was tested with respect of the applicability to ancient and degraded DNA. The results were compared to mini-sequencing data achieved through single base extension (SBE) typing. The SNPs chosen for the study allow to determine the hair colors and eye colors of humans. Material and methods The DNA samples were extracted from the skeletal remains of 59 human individuals dating back to the Late Bronze Age. The 3,000 years old bones had been discovered in the Lichtenstein Cave in Lower Saxony, Germany. The simultaneous typing of 24 SNPs for each of the ancient DNA samples was carried out using the 192.24 Dynamic Array (TM) by Fluidigm (R). Results Thirty-eight of the ancient samples (=64%) revealed full and reproducible SNP genotypes allowing hair and eye color phenotyping. In 10 samples (=17%) at least half of the SNPs were unambiguously determined, in 11 samples (=19%) the SNP typing failed. For 23 of the 59 individuals, a comparison of the SNP typing results with genotypes from an earlier performed SBE typing approach was possible. The comparison confirmed the full concordance of the results for 90% of the SNP typings. In the remaining 10% allelic dropouts were identified. Discussion The high genotyping success rate could be achieved by introducing modifications to the preamplification protocol mainly by increasing the DNA input and the amplification cycle number. The occurrence of allelic dropouts indicates that a further increase of DNA input to the preamplification step is desirable

    Mitochondrial fusion is required for regulation of mitochondrial DNA replication

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    Mitochondrial dynamics is an essential physiological process controlling mitochondrial content mixing and mobility to ensure proper function and localization of mitochondria at intracellular sites of high-energy demand. Intriguingly, for yet unknown reasons, severe impairment of mitochondrial fusion drastically affects mtDNA copy number. To decipher the link between mitochondrial dynamics and mtDNA maintenance, we studied mouse embryonic fibroblasts (MEFs) and mouse cardiomyocytes with disruption of mitochondrial fusion. Super-resolution microscopy revealed that loss of outer mitochondrial membrane (OMM) fusion, but not inner mitochondrial membrane (IMM) fusion, leads to nucleoid clustering. Remarkably, fluorescence in situ hybridization (FISH), bromouridine labeling in MEFs and assessment of mitochondrial transcription in tissue homogenates revealed that abolished OMM fusion does not affect transcription. Furthermore, the profound mtDNA depletion in mouse hearts lacking OMM fusion is not caused by defective integrity or increased mutagenesis of mtDNA, but instead we show that mitochondrial fusion is necessary to maintain the stoichiometry of the protein components of the mtDNA replisome. OMM fusion is necessary for proliferating MEFs to recover from mtDNA depletion and for the marked increase of mtDNA copy number during postnatal heart development. Our findings thus link OMM fusion to replication and distribution of mtDNA. Author summary Mammalian mitochondria contain multiple copies of the mitochondrial genome (mtDNA), which encodes genes that are essential for the oxidative phosphorylation system. An important feature of mtDNA is that it is evenly distributed throughout the mitochondrial network. Dynamin-related GTPase proteins help control the size and shape of mitochondria by fusion and fission events and are intimately linked to maintenance and distribution of mtDNA. Certain human mutations in mitofusin 2 (MFN2) and optic atrophy protein 1 (OPA1) cause disease phenotypes, such as peripheral neuropathy and optic atrophy, which are often also associated with mtDNA depletion. However, the mechanism whereby MFNs and OPA1 are involved in maintenance of mtDNA is unclear. In this study, we demonstrate that rapid mtDNA synthesis in proliferating tissue-culture cells or cardiomyocytes during post-natal heart development requires mitochondrial fusion. However, the absence of mitochondrial fusion in mouse heart is not associated with mtDNA integrity defects but instead affects the replication of mtDNA. These findings provide direct evidence for the importance of mitochondrial fusion in maintaining mtDNA replication

    A simple decomposition of European temperature variability capturing the variance from days to a decade

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    We analyze European temperature variability from station data with the method of detrended fluctuation analysis. This method is known to give a scaling exponent indicating long range correlations in time for temperature anomalies. However, by a more careful look at the fluctuation function we are able to explain the emergent scaling behaviour by short time relaxation, the yearly cycle and one additional process. It turns out that for many stations this interannual variability is an oscillatory mode with a period length of approximately 7-8 years, which is consistent with results of other methods. We discuss the spatial patterns in all parameters and validate the finding of the 7-8 year period by comparing stations with and without this mode
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