2,513 research outputs found

    Emerg Infect Dis

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    The identification of new materials capable of sustaining a high electron emission current is a key requirement in the development of the next generation of cold cathode devices and technology. Compatibility with large volume material production methods is a further important practical consideration with solution chemistry-based methods providing for route to industrial scale-up. Here we demonstrate a new class of organic-inorganic hybrid material based on polypyrrole and zinc oxide (PPy/ZnO) nanofibers for use as a low-cost large-area cathode material. Solution chemistry based surfactant chemical oxidation polymerisation is used to synthesise the nanofibers and the macroscopic turn-on electric field for emission has been measured to be as low as 1.8 V/μm, with an emission current density of 1 mA/cm2 possible for an applied electric field of less than 4 V/μm. Specfic surface area measurements reveal a linear increase in the nanofiber surface area with ZnO incorporation, which when coupled with electron microscopy and x-ray diffraction analysis reveals that the wurtzite ZnO nanoparticles (around 45 nm in size) act as nucleation sites for the growth of PPy nanofibers. Our study demonstrates for the first time how an inorganic nanocrystal acting as a nucleation site allows for the tailored growth of the organic component without diminishing the overall electrical properties and opens the potential of a new type of organic-inorganic hybrid large-area cathode material. The broader impacts and advantages of using hybrid materials, when compared to other composite nanomaterial systems, as large area cathode materials are also discusse

    Rapid, Heuristic Discovery and Design of Promoter Collections in Non-Model Microbes for Industrial Applications

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    This is the author accepted manusript. The final version is available from American Chemical Society via the DOI in this recordAccession Codes: The sequence data for the four Geobacillus spp. used in this study have been submitted to the NCBI Sequence Read Archive and are available under the accession number PRJNA521450.Well-characterized promoter collections for synthetic biology applications are not always available in industrially relevant hosts. We developed a broadly applicable method for promoter identification in atypical microbial hosts that requires no a priori understanding of cis-regulatory element structure. This novel approach combines bioinformatic filtering with rapid empirical characterization to expand the promoter toolkit and uses machine learning to improve the understanding of the relationship between DNA sequence and function. Here, we apply the method in Geobacillus thermoglucosidasius, a thermophilic organism with high potential as a synthetic biology chassis for industrial applications. Bioinformatic screening of G. kaustophilus, G. stearothermophilus, G. thermodenitrificans, and G. thermoglucosidasius resulted in the identification of 636 100 bp putative promoters, encompassing the genome-wide design space and lacking known transcription factor binding sites. Eighty of these sequences were characterized in vivo, and activities covered a 2-log range of predictable expression levels. Seven sequences were shown to function consistently regardless of the downstream coding sequence. Partition modeling identified sequence positions upstream of the canonical -35 and -10 consensus motifs that were predicted to strongly influence regulatory activity in Geobacillus, and artificial neural network and partial least squares regression models were derived to assess if there were a simple, forward, quantitative method for in silico prediction of promoter function. However, the models were insufficiently general to predict pre hoc promoter activity in vivo, most probably as a result of the relatively small size of the training data set compared to the size of the modeled design space

    Effects of neo-adjuvant chemotherapy for oesophago-gastric cancer on neuro-muscular gastric function

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    Delayed gastric emptying symptoms are often reported after chemotherapy. This study aims to characterise the effects of chemotherapy on gastric neuro-muscular function. Patients undergoing elective surgery for oesophago-gastric cancer were recruited. Acetylcholinesterase, nNOS, ghrelin receptor and motilin expressions were studied in gastric sections from patients receiving no chemotherapy (n = 3) or oesophageal (n = 2) or gastric (n = 2) chemotherapy. A scoring system quantified staining intensity (0–3; no staining to strong). Stomach sections were separately suspended in tissue baths for electrical field stimulation (EFS) and exposure to erythromycin or carbachol; three patients had no chemotherapy; four completed cisplatin-based chemotherapy within 6 weeks prior to surgery. AChE expression was markedly decreased after chemotherapy (scores 2.3 ± 0.7, 0.5 ± 0.2 and 0 ± 0 in non-chemotherapy, oesophageal- and gastric-chemotherapy groups (p < 0.03 each) respectively. Ghrelin receptor and motilin expression tended to increase (ghrelin: 0.7 ± 0.4 vs 2.0 ± 0.4 and 1.2 ± 0.2 respectively; p = 0.04 and p = 0.2; motilin: 0.7 ± 0.5 vs 2.2 ± 0.5 and 2.0 ± 0.7; p = 0.06 and p = 0.16). Maximal contraction to carbachol was 3.7 ± 0.7 g and 1.9 ± 0.8 g (longitudinal muscle) and 3.4 ± 0.4 g and 1.6 ± 0.6 (circular) in non-chemotherapy and chemotherapy tissues respectively (p < 0.05 each). There were loss of AChE and reduction in contractility to carbachol. The tendency for ghrelin receptors to increase suggests an attempt to upregulate compensating systems. Our study offers a mechanism by which chemotherapy markedly alters neuro-muscular gastric function

    Double Parton Scattering Singularity in One-Loop Integrals

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    We present a detailed study of the double parton scattering (DPS) singularity, which is a specific type of Landau singularity that can occur in certain one-loop graphs in theories with massless particles. A simple formula for the DPS singular part of a four-point diagram with arbitrary internal/external particles is derived in terms of the transverse momentum integral of a product of light cone wavefunctions with tree-level matrix elements. This is used to reproduce and explain some results for DPS singularities in box integrals that have been obtained using traditional loop integration techniques. The formula can be straightforwardly generalised to calculate the DPS singularity in loops with an arbitrary number of external particles. We use the generalised version to explain why the specific MHV and NMHV six-photon amplitudes often studied by the NLO multileg community are not divergent at the DPS singular point, and point out that whilst all NMHV amplitudes are always finite, certain MHV amplitudes do contain a DPS divergence. It is shown that our framework for calculating DPS divergences in loop diagrams is entirely consistent with the `two-parton GPD' framework of Diehl and Schafer for calculating proton-proton DPS cross sections, but is inconsistent with the `double PDF' framework of Snigirev.Comment: 29 pages, 8 figures. Minor corrections and clarifications added. Version accepted for publication in JHE

    IgG antibody production and persistence to 6 months following SARS-CoV-2 vaccination: a Northern Ireland observational study

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    BACKGROUND: This study evaluates spike protein IgG antibody response following Oxford-AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccination using the AbC-19â„¢ lateral flow device. METHODS: Plasma samples were collected from n=111 individuals from Northern Ireland. The majority were >50 years old and/or clinically vulnerable. Samples were taken at five timepoints from pre-vaccination until 6-months post-first dose. RESULTS: 20.3% of participants had detectable IgG responses pre-vaccination, indicating prior COVID-19. Antibodies were detected in 86.9% of participants three weeks after the first vaccine dose, falling to 74.7% immediately prior to the second dose, and rising to 99% three weeks post-second vaccine. At 6-months post-first dose, this decreased to 90.5%. At all timepoints, previously infected participants had significantly higher antibody levels than those not previously infected. CONCLUSION: This study demonstrates that strong anti-spike protein antibody responses are evoked in almost all individuals that receive two doses of Oxford-AstraZeneca vaccine, and largely persist beyond six months after first vaccination

    Acute Fulminant Colitis Caused by Idiopathic Mesenteric Inflammatory Veno-Occlusive Disease

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    Mesenteric inflammatory veno-occlusive disease (MIVOD) is an uncommon but important cause of bowel inflammation. MIVOD is characterised by lymphocytic inflammation and non-thrombotic occlusion of the mesenteric venules and veins. We present the case of a young man who presented with acute fulminant colitis, requiring colectomy. The differential diagnosis, pathogenesis and treatment are discussed. This case illustrates the rapid progression from ‘well’ to ‘colectomy’ that can occur with MIVOD. MIVOD should be considered in the differential diagnosis of colitis that does not respond to conventional medical treatment
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