2,067 research outputs found

    The Suprafroth (Superconducting Froth)

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    The structure and dynamics of froths have been subjects of intense interest due to the desire to understand the behaviour of complex systems where topological intricacy prohibits exact evaluation of the ground state. The dynamics of a traditional froth involves drainage and drying in the cell boundaries, thus it is irreversible. We report a new member to the froths family: suprafroth, in which the cell boundaries are superconducting and the cell interior is normal phase. Despite very different microscopic origin, topological analysis of the structure of the suprafroth shows that statistical von Neumann and Lewis laws apply. Furthermore, for the first time in the analysis of froths there is a global measurable property, the magnetic moment, which can be directly related to the suprafroth structure. We propose that this suprafroth is a new, model system for the analysis of the complex physics of two-dimensional froths

    Monorail/Foxa2 regulates floorplate differentiation and specification of oligodendrocytes, serotonergic raphe neurones and cranial motoneurones

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    In this study, we elucidate the roles of the winged-helix transcription factor Foxa2 in ventral CNS development in zebrafish. Through cloning of monorail (mol), which we find encodes the transcription factor Foxa2, and phenotypic analysis of mol(-/-) embryos, we show that floorplate is induced in the absence of Foxa2 function but fails to further differentiate. In mol(-/-) mutants, expression of Foxa and Hh family genes is not maintained in floorplate cells and lateral expansion of the floorplate fails to occur. Our results suggest that this is due to defects both in the regulation of Hh activity in medial floorplate cells as well as cell-autonomous requirements for Foxa2 in the prospective laterally positioned floorplate cells themselves. Foxa2 is also required for induction and/or patterning of several distinct cell types in the ventral CNS. Serotonergic neurones of the raphe nucleus and the trochlear motor nucleus are absent in mol(-/-) embryos, and oculomotor and facial motoneurones ectopically occupy ventral CNS midline positions in the midbrain and hindbrain. There is also a severe reduction of prospective oligodendrocytes in the midbrain and hindbrain. Finally, in the absence of Foxa2, at least two likely Hh pathway target genes are ectopically expressed in more dorsal regions of the midbrain and hindbrain ventricular neuroepithelium, raising the possibility that Foxa2 activity may normally be required to limit the range of action of secreted Hh proteins

    Visual art inspired by the collective feeding behavior of sand-bubbler crabs

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    Sand--bubblers are crabs of the genera Dotilla and Scopimera which are known to produce remarkable patterns and structures at tropical beaches. From these pattern-making abilities, we may draw inspiration for digital visual art. A simple mathematical model is proposed and an algorithm is designed that may create such sand-bubbler patterns artificially. In addition, design parameters to modify the patterns are identified and analyzed by computational aesthetic measures. Finally, an extension of the algorithm is discussed that may enable controlling and guiding generative evolution of the art-making process

    Cerebellar Integrity in the Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis - Frontotemporal Dementia Continuum

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    Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) and behavioural variant frontotemporal dementia (bvFTD) are multisystem neurodegenerative disorders that manifest overlapping cognitive, neuropsychiatric and motor features. The cerebellum has long been known to be crucial for intact motor function although emerging evidence over the past decade has attributed cognitive and neuropsychiatric processes to this structure. The current study set out i) to establish the integrity of cerebellar subregions in the amyotrophic lateral sclerosis-behavioural variant frontotemporal dementia spectrum (ALS-bvFTD) and ii) determine whether specific cerebellar atrophy regions are associated with cognitive, neuropsychiatric and motor symptoms in the patients. Seventy-eight patients diagnosed with ALS, ALS-bvFTD, behavioural variant frontotemporal dementia (bvFTD), most without C9ORF72 gene abnormalities, and healthy controls were investigated. Participants underwent cognitive, neuropsychiatric and functional evaluation as well as structural imaging using voxel-based morphometry (VBM) to examine the grey matter subregions of the cerebellar lobules, vermis and crus. VBM analyses revealed: i) significant grey matter atrophy in the cerebellum across the whole ALS-bvFTD continuum; ii) atrophy predominantly of the superior cerebellum and crus in bvFTD patients, atrophy of the inferior cerebellum and vermis in ALS patients, while ALS-bvFTD patients had both patterns of atrophy. Post-hoc covariance analyses revealed that cognitive and neuropsychiatric symptoms were particularly associated with atrophy of the crus and superior lobule, while motor symptoms were more associated with atrophy of the inferior lobules. Taken together, these findings indicate an important role of the cerebellum in the ALS-bvFTD disease spectrum, with all three clinical phenotypes demonstrating specific patterns of subregional atrophy that associated with different symptomology

    Impact of the Specific Mutation in KRAS Codon 12 Mutated Tumors on Treatment Efficacy in Patients with Metastatic Colorectal Cancer Receiving Cetuximab-Based First-Line Therapy: A Pooled Analysis of Three Trials

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    Purpose: This study investigated the impact of specific mutations in codon 12 of the Kirsten-ras (KRAS) gene on treatment efficacy in patients with metastatic colorectal cancer (mCRC). Patients: Overall, 119 patients bearing a KRAS mutation in codon 12 were evaluated. All patients received cetuximab-based first-line chemotherapy within the Central European Cooperative Oncology Group (CECOG), AIO KRK-0104 or AIO KRK-0306 trials. Results: Patients with KRAS codon 12 mutant mCRC showed a broad range of outcome when treated with cetuximab-based first-line regimens. Patients with tumors bearing a KRAS p.G12D mutation showed a strong trend to a more favorable outcome compared to other mutations (overall survival 23.3 vs. 14-18 months; hazard ratio 0.66, range 0.43-1.03). An interaction model illustrated that KRAS p.G12C was associated with unfavorable outcome when treated with oxaliplatin plus cetuximab. Conclusion: The present analysis suggests that KRAS codon 12 mutation may not represent a homogeneous entity in mCRC when treated with cetuximab-based first-line therapy. Copyright (C) 2012 S. Karger AG, Base

    Creation of multiple nanodots by single ions

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    In the challenging search for tools that are able to modify surfaces on the nanometer scale, heavy ions with energies of several 10 MeV are becoming more and more attractive. In contrast to slow ions where nuclear stopping is important and the energy is dissipated into a large volume in the crystal, in the high energy regime the stopping is due to electronic excitations only. Because of the extremely local (< 1 nm) energy deposition with densities of up to 10E19 W/cm^2, nanoscaled hillocks can be created under normal incidence. Usually, each nanodot is due to the impact of a single ion and the dots are randomly distributed. We demonstrate that multiple periodically spaced dots separated by a few 10 nanometers can be created by a single ion if the sample is irradiated under grazing angles of incidence. By varying this angle the number of dots can be controlled.Comment: 12 pages, 6 figure

    Bell Correlations and the Common Future

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    Reichenbach's principle states that in a causal structure, correlations of classical information can stem from a common cause in the common past or a direct influence from one of the events in correlation to the other. The difficulty of explaining Bell correlations through a mechanism in that spirit can be read as questioning either the principle or even its basis: causality. In the former case, the principle can be replaced by its quantum version, accepting as a common cause an entangled state, leaving the phenomenon as mysterious as ever on the classical level (on which, after all, it occurs). If, more radically, the causal structure is questioned in principle, closed space-time curves may become possible that, as is argued in the present note, can give rise to non-local correlations if to-be-correlated pieces of classical information meet in the common future --- which they need to if the correlation is to be detected in the first place. The result is a view resembling Brassard and Raymond-Robichaud's parallel-lives variant of Hermann's and Everett's relative-state formalism, avoiding "multiple realities."Comment: 8 pages, 5 figure

    Top-mass effects in differential Higgs production through gluon fusion at order \alpha_s^4

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    Effects from a finite top quark mass on differential distributions in the Higgs+jet production cross section through gluon fusion are studied at next-to-leading order in the strong coupling, i.e. O(αs4)O(\alpha_s^4). Terms formally subleading in 1/mt1/m_t are calculated, and their influence on the transverse momentum and rapidity distribution of the Higgs boson are evaluated. We find that, for the differential K-factor, the heavy-top limit is valid at the 2-3% level as long as the transverse momentum of the Higgs remains below about 150 GeV.Comment: 21 pages, 12 figure

    Protein crystals in adenovirus type 5-infected cells: requirements for intranuclear crystallogenesis, structural and functional analysis

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    Intranuclear crystalline inclusions have been observed in the nucleus of epithelial cells infected with Adenovirus serotype 5 (Ad5) at late steps of the virus life cycle. Using immuno-electron microscopy and confocal microscopy of cells infected with various Ad5 recombinants modified in their penton base or fiber domains, we found that these inclusions represented crystals of penton capsomers, the heteromeric capsid protein formed of penton base and fiber subunits. The occurrence of protein crystals within the nucleus of infected cells required the integrity of the fiber knob and part of the shaft domain. In the knob domain, the region overlapping residues 489–492 in the FG loop was found to be essential for crystal formation. In the shaft, a large deletion of repeats 4 to 16 had no detrimental effect on crystal inclusions, whereas deletion of repeats 8 to 21 abolished crystal formation without altering the level of fiber protein expression. This suggested a crucial role of the five penultimate repeats in the crystallisation process. Chimeric pentons made of Ad5 penton base and fiber domains from different serotypes were analyzed with respect to crystal formation. No crystal was found when fiber consisted of shaft (S) from Ad5 and knob (K) from Ad3 (heterotypic S5-K3 fiber), but occurred with homotypic S3K3 fiber. However, less regular crystals were observed with homotypic S35-K35 fiber. TB5, a monoclonal antibody directed against the Ad5 fiber knob was found by immunofluorescence microscopy to react with high efficiency with the intranuclear protein crystals in situ. Data obtained with Ad fiber mutants indicated that the absence of crystalline inclusions correlated with a lower infectivity and/or lower yields of virus progeny, suggesting that the protein crystals might be involved in virion assembly. Thus, we propose that TB5 staining of Ad-infected 293 cells can be used as a prognostic assay for the viability and productivity of fiber-modified Ad5 vectors

    Interpersonal and affective dimensions of psychopathic traits in adolescents : development and validation of a self-report instrument

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    We report the development and psychometric evaluations of a self-report instrument designed to screen for psychopathic traits among mainstream community adolescents. Tests of item functioning were initially conducted with 26 adolescents. In a second study the new instrument was administered to 150 high school adolescents, 73 of who had school records of suspension for antisocial behavior. Exploratory factor analysis yielded a 4-factor structure (Impulsivity α = .73, Self-Centredness α = .70, Callous-Unemotional α = .69, and Manipulativeness α = .83). In a third study involving 328 high school adolescents, 130 with records of suspension for antisocial behaviour, competing measurement models were evaluated using confirmatory factor analysis. The superiority of a first-order model represented by four correlated factors that was invariant across gender and age was confirmed. The findings provide researchers and clinicians with a psychometrically strong, self-report instrument and a greater understanding of psychopathic traits in mainstream adolescents
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