4,036 research outputs found

    Retrodictive states and two-photon quantum imaging

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    We use retrodictive quantum theory to analyse two-photon quantum imaging systems. The formalism is particularly suitable for calculating conditional probability distributions.Comment: 5 pages, 3 figure

    Dissecting the role of histidine kinase and Hog1 mitogen-activated protein kinase signalling in stress tolerance and pathogenicity of Parastagonospora nodorum on wheat.

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    The HOG1 mitogen-activated protein kinase (MAPK) pathway is activated through two-component histidine kinase (HK) signalling. This pathway was first characterized in the budding yeast Saccharomyces cerevisiae as a regulator of osmotolerance. The fungus Parastagonospora nodorum is the causal agent of septoria nodorum blotch of wheat. This pathogen uses host-specific effectors in tandem with general pathogenicity mechanisms to carry out its infection process. Genes showing strong sequence homology to S. cerevisiae HOG1 signalling pathway genes have been identified in the genome of P. nodorum. In this study, we examined the role of the pathway in the virulence of P. nodorum on wheat by disrupting putative pathway component genes: HOG1 (SNOG_13296) MAPK and NIK1 (SNOG_11631) hybrid HK. Mutants deleted in NIK1 and HOG1 were insensitive to dicarboximide and phenylpyrrole fungicides, but not a fungicide that targets ergosterol biosynthesis. Furthermore, both Δnik1 and Δhog1 mutants showed increased sensitivity to hyperosmotic stress. However, HOG1, but not NIK1, is required for tolerance to elevated temperatures. HOG1 deletion conferred increased tolerance to 6-methoxy-2-benzoxazolinone, a cereal phytoalexin. This suggests that the HOG1 signalling pathway is not exclusively associated with NIK1. Both Δnik1 and Δhog1 mutants retained the ability to infect and cause necrotic lesions on wheat. However, we observed that the Δhog1 mutation resulted in reduced production of pycnidia, asexual fruiting bodies that facilitate spore dispersal during late infection. Our study demonstrated the overlapping and distinct roles of a HOG1 MAPK and two-component HK signalling in P. nodorum growth and pathogenicity

    Functional redundancy of necrotrophic effectors – consequences for exploitation for breeding

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    Necrotrophic diseases of wheat cause major losses in most wheat growing areas of world. Tan spot (caused by Pyrenophora tritici-repentis) and septoria nodorum blotch (SNB; Parastagonospora nodorum) have been shown to reduce yields by 10–20% across entire agri-ecological zones despite the application of fungicides and a heavy focus over the last 30 years on resistance breeding. Efforts by breeders to improve the resistance of cultivars has been compromised by the universal finding that resistance was quantitative and governed by multiple quantitative trait loci (QTL). Most QTL had a limited effect that was hard to measure precisely and varied significantly from site to site and season to season. The discovery of necrotrophic effectors has given breeding for disease resistance new methods and tools. In the case of tan spot in West Australia, a single effector, PtrToxA and its recogniser gene Tsn1, has a dominating impact in disease resistance. The delivery of ToxA to breeders has had a major impact on cultivar choice and breeding strategies. For P. nodorum, three effectors – SnToxA, SnTox1, and SnTox3 – have been well characterized. Unlike tan spot, no one effector has a dominating role. Genetic analysis of various mapping populations and pathogen isolates has shown that different effectors have varying impact and that epistatic interactions also occur. As a result of these factors the deployment of these effectors for SNB resistance breeding is more complex. We have deleted the three effectors in a strain of P. nodorum and measured effector activity and disease potential of the triple knockout mutant. The culture filtrate causes necrosis in several cultivars and the strain causes disease, albeit the overall levels are less than in the wild type. Modeling of the field disease resistance scores of cultivars from their reactions to the microbially expressed effectors SnToxA, SnTox1, and SnTox3 is significantly improved by including the response to the triple knockout mutant culture filtrate. This indicates that one or more further effectors are secreted into the culture filtrate. We conclude that the in vitro-secreted necrotrophic effectors explain a very large part of the disease response of wheat germplasm and that this method of resistance breeding promises to further reduce the impact of these globally significant diseases

    Resonance fluorescence in a band gap material: Direct numerical simulation of non-Markovian evolution

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    A numerical method of calculating the non-Markovian evolution of a driven atom radiating into a structured continuum is developed. The formal solution for the atomic reduced density matrix is written as a Markovian algorithm by introducing a set of additional, virtual density matrices which follow, to the level of approximation of the algorithm, all the possible trajectories of the photons in the electromagnetic field. The technique is perturbative in the sense that more virtual density matrices are required as the product of the effective memory time and the effective coupling strength become larger. The number of density matrices required is given by 3M3^{M} where MM is the number of timesteps per memory time. The technique is applied to the problem of a driven two-level atom radiating close to a photonic band gap and the steady-state correlation function of the atom is calculated.Comment: 14 pages, 9 figure

    Out-Life Characteristics of IM7/977-3 Composites

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    The capability to manufacture large structures leads to weight savings and reduced risk relative to joining smaller components. However, manufacture of increasingly large composite components is pushing the out-time limits of epoxy/ carbon fiber prepreg. IM7/977-3 is an autoclave processable prepreg material, commonly used in aerospace structures. The out-time limit is reported as 30 days by the manufacturer. The purpose of this work was to evaluate the material processability and composite properties of 977-3 resin and IM7/977-3 prepreg that had been aged at room temperature for up to 60 days. The effects of room temperature aging on the thermal and visco-elastic properties of the materials were investigated. Neat resin was evaluated by differential scanning calorimetry to characterize thermal properties and change in activation energy of cure. Neat resin was also evaluated by rheometry to characterize its processability in composite fabrication. IM7/977-3 prepreg was evaluated by dynamic mechanical analysis to characterize the curing behavior. Prepreg tack was also evaluated over 60 days. The overall test results suggested that IM7/977-3 was a robust material that offered quality laminates throughout this aging process when processed by autoclave

    A Novel Unsupervised Method to Identify Genes Important in the Anti-viral Response: Application to Interferon/Ribavirin in Hepatitis C Patients

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    Background: Treating hepatitis C with interferon/ribavirin results in a varied response in terms of decrease in viral titer and ultimate outcome. Marked responders have a sharp decline in viral titer within a few days of treatment initiation, whereas in other patients there is no effect on the virus (poor responders). Previous studies have shown that combination therapy modifies expression of hundreds of genes in vitro and in vivo. However, identifying which, if any, of these genes have a role in viral clearance remains challenging. Aims: The goal of this paper is to link viral levels with gene expression and thereby identify genes that may be responsible for early decrease in viral titer. Methods: Microarrays were performed on RNA isolated from PBMC of patients undergoing interferon/ribavirin therapy. Samples were collected at pre-treatment (day 0), and 1, 2, 7, 14 and 28 days after initiating treatment. A novel method was applied to identify genes that are linked to a decrease in viral titer during interferon/ribavirin treatment. The method uses the relationship between inter-patient gene expression based proximities and inter-patient viral titer based proximities to define the association between microarray gene expression measurements of each gene and viral-titer measurements. Results: We detected 36 unique genes whose expressions provide a clustering of patients that resembles viral titer based clustering of patients. These genes include IRF7, MX1, OASL and OAS2, viperin and many ISG's of unknown function. Conclusion: The genes identified by this method appear to play a major role in the reduction of hepatitis C virus during the early phase of treatment. The method has broad utility and can be used to analyze response to any group of factors influencing biological outcome such as antiviral drugs or anti-cancer agents where microarray data are available. © 2007 Brodsky et al

    An Unusual Transmission Spectrum for the Sub-Saturn KELT-11b Suggestive of a Sub-Solar Water Abundance

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    We present an optical-to-infrared transmission spectrum of the inflated sub-Saturn KELT-11b measured with the Transiting Exoplanet Survey Satellite (TESS), the Hubble Space Telescope (HST) Wide Field Camera 3 G141 spectroscopic grism, and the Spitzer Space Telescope (Spitzer) at 3.6 μ\mum, in addition to a Spitzer 4.5 μ\mum secondary eclipse. The precise HST transmission spectrum notably reveals a low-amplitude water feature with an unusual shape. Based on free retrieval analyses with varying molecular abundances, we find strong evidence for water absorption. Depending on model assumptions, we also find tentative evidence for other absorbers (HCN, TiO, and AlO). The retrieved water abundance is generally 0.1×\lesssim 0.1\times solar (0.001--0.7×\times solar over a range of model assumptions), several orders of magnitude lower than expected from planet formation models based on the solar system metallicity trend. We also consider chemical equilibrium and self-consistent 1D radiative-convective equilibrium model fits and find they too prefer low metallicities ([M/H]2[M/H] \lesssim -2, consistent with the free retrieval results). However, all the retrievals should be interpreted with some caution since they either require additional absorbers that are far out of chemical equilibrium to explain the shape of the spectrum or are simply poor fits to the data. Finally, we find the Spitzer secondary eclipse is indicative of full heat redistribution from KELT-11b's dayside to nightside, assuming a clear dayside. These potentially unusual results for KELT-11b's composition are suggestive of new challenges on the horizon for atmosphere and formation models in the face of increasingly precise measurements of exoplanet spectra.Comment: Accepted to The Astronomical Journal. 31 pages, 20 figures, 7 table

    Brand Name and Generic Proton Pump Inhibitor Prescriptions in the United States: Insights from the National Ambulatory Medical Care Survey (2006–2010)

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    Introduction. Proton pump inhibitors (PPI) are one of the most commonly prescribed medication classes with similar efficacy between brand name and generic PPI formulations. Aims. We determined demographic, clinical, and practice characteristics associated with brand name PPI prescriptions at ambulatory care visits in the United States. Methods. Observational cross sectional analysis using the National Ambulatory Medical Care Survey (NAMCS) of all adult (≥18 yrs of age) ambulatory care visits from 2006 to 2010. PPI prescriptions were identified by using the drug entry code as brand name only or generic available formulations. Descriptive statistics were reported in terms of unweighted patient visits and proportions of encounters with brand name PPI prescriptions. Global chi-square tests were used to compare visits with brand name PPI prescriptions versus generic PPI prescriptions for each measure. Poisson regression was used to determine the incidence rate ratio (IRR) for generic versus brand PPI prescribing. Results. A PPI was prescribed at 269.7 million adult ambulatory visits, based on 9,677 unweighted visits, of which 53% were brand name only prescriptions. In 2006, 76.0% of all PPI prescriptions had a brand name only formulation compared to 31.6% of PPI prescriptions in 2010. Visits by patients aged 25–44 years had the greatest proportion of brand name PPI formulations (57.9%). Academic medical centers and physician-owned practices had the greatest proportion of visits with brand name PPI prescriptions (58.9% and 55.6% of visits with a PPI prescription, resp.). There were no significant differences in terms of median income, patient insurance type, or metropolitan status when comparing the proportion of visits with brand name versus generic PPI prescriptions. Poisson regression results showed that practice ownership type was most strongly associated with the likelihood of receiving a brand name PPI over the entire study period. Compared to HMO visits, patient visits at academic medical centers (IRR 4.2, 95% CI 2.2–8.0), physician-owned practices (IRR 3.9, 95% CI 2.1–7.1), and community health centers (IRR 3.6, 95% CI 1.9–6.6) were all more likely to have brand name PPIs. Conclusion. PPI prescriptions with brand name only formulations are most strongly associated with physician practice type
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