696 research outputs found

    Large scale cultivation of genetically modified microalgae: A new era for environmental risk assessment

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    The genetic modification of microalgal strains for enhanced or modified metabolic activity shows great promise for biotechnological exploitation. However, of key concern for many is the safety of GM technology and GMOs with regard to both the environment and human health, and how these concerns are met will play a key role in ensuring how successful commercialisation of GM algae is achieved. Commercialisation opportunities for GM microalgae will inevitably require translation from laboratory to industrial settings, on scales beyond those typically associated with the current biotechnology sector. Here we provide an overview of the current situation with regards to GM techniques and legislation, and the implications of large-scale cultivation with regards to developing a safe and effective risk assessment system for contained and uncontained activities. We discuss the rationale and options for modification and the implications for risks associated with scale up to human health and the environment, current grey areas in political/technical legislation, the use of contained/uncontained production systems, deliberate release and monitoring strategies. We conclude that while existing procedures are not entirely sufficient for accurate and exhaustive risk assessment, there exists a substantial knowledge base and expertise within the existing aquaculture, fermentation and (algal) biotechnology industries that can be combined and applied to ensure safe use in the future

    Search for new phenomena in final states with an energetic jet and large missing transverse momentum in pp collisions at √ s = 8 TeV with the ATLAS detector

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    Results of a search for new phenomena in final states with an energetic jet and large missing transverse momentum are reported. The search uses 20.3 fb−1 of √ s = 8 TeV data collected in 2012 with the ATLAS detector at the LHC. Events are required to have at least one jet with pT > 120 GeV and no leptons. Nine signal regions are considered with increasing missing transverse momentum requirements between Emiss T > 150 GeV and Emiss T > 700 GeV. Good agreement is observed between the number of events in data and Standard Model expectations. The results are translated into exclusion limits on models with either large extra spatial dimensions, pair production of weakly interacting dark matter candidates, or production of very light gravitinos in a gauge-mediated supersymmetric model. In addition, limits on the production of an invisibly decaying Higgs-like boson leading to similar topologies in the final state are presente

    Baltic Salmon, Salmo salar, from Swedish River Lule Älv Is More Resistant to Furunculosis Compared to Rainbow Trout

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    BACKGROUND: Furunculosis, caused by Aeromonas salmonicida, continues to be a major health problem for the growing salmonid aquaculture. Despite effective vaccination programs regular outbreaks occur at the fish farms calling for repeated antibiotic treatment. We hypothesized that a difference in natural susceptibility to this disease might exist between Baltic salmon and the widely used rainbow trout. STUDY DESIGN: A cohabitation challenge model was applied to investigate the relative susceptibility to infection with A. salmonicida in rainbow trout and Baltic salmon. The course of infection was monitored daily over a 30-day period post challenge and the results were summarized in mortality curves. RESULTS: A. salmonicida was recovered from mortalities during the entire test period. At day 30 the survival was 6.2% and 34.0% for rainbow trout and Baltic salmon, respectively. Significant differences in susceptibility to A. salmonicida were demonstrated between the two salmonids and hazard ratio estimation between rainbow trout and Baltic salmon showed a 3.36 higher risk of dying from the infection in the former. CONCLUSION: The finding that Baltic salmon carries a high level of natural resistance to furunculosis might raise new possibilities for salmonid aquaculture in terms of minimizing disease outbreaks and the use of antibiotics

    An Investigation into the Poor Survival of an Endangered Coho Salmon Population

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    To investigate reasons for the decline of an endangered population of coho salmon (O. kisutch), 190 smolts were acoustically tagged during three consecutive years and their movements and survival were estimated using the Pacific Ocean Shelf Tracking project (POST) array. Median travel times of the Thompson River coho salmon smolts to the lower Fraser River sub-array were 16, 12 and 10 days during 2004, 2005 and 2006, respectively. Few smolts were recorded on marine arrays. Freshwater survival rates of the tagged smolts during their downstream migration were 0.0–5.6% (0.0–9.0% s.e.) in 2004, 7.0% (6.2% s.e.) in 2005, and 50.9% (18.6% s.e.) in 2006. Overall smolt-to-adult return rates exhibited a similar pattern, which suggests that low freshwater survival rates of out-migrating smolts may be a primary reason for the poor conservation status of this endangered coho salmon population

    Differential Expressions of Adhesive Molecules and Proteases Define Mechanisms of Ovarian Tumor Cell Matrix Penetration/Invasion

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    Epithelial ovarian cancer is an aggressive and deadly disease and understanding its invasion mechanisms is critical for its treatment. We sought to study the penetration/invasion of ovarian tumor cells into extracellular matrices (ECMs) using a fibroblast-derived three-dimensional (3D) culture model and time-lapse and confocal imaging. Twelve ovarian tumor cells were evaluated and classified into distinct groups based on their ECM remodeling phenotypes; those that degraded the ECM (represented by OVCAR5 cells) and those that did not (represented by OVCAR10 cells). Cells exhibiting a distinct ECM modifying behavior were also segregated by epithelial- or mesenchymal-like phenotypes and uPA or MMP-2/MMP-9 expression. The cells, which presented epithelial-like phenotypes, penetrated the ECM using proteases and maintained intact cell-cell interactions, while cells exhibiting mesenchymal phenotypes modified the matrices via Rho-associated serine/threonine kinase (ROCK) in the absence of apparent cell-cell interactions. Overall, this study demonstrates that different mechanisms of modifying matrices by ovarian tumor cells may reflect heterogeneity among tumors and emphasize the need to systematically assess these mechanisms to better design effective therapies

    Searches for Higgs boson pair production in the hh→bbττ, γγWW∗, γγbb, bbbb channels with the ATLAS detector