4,433 research outputs found

    An Insulin-Like Modular Basis for the Evolution of Glucose Transporters (GLUT) with Implications for Diabetes

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    Glucose transporters (GLUT) are twelve-transmembrane spanning proteins that contain two pores capable of transporting glucose and dehydroascorbate in and out of cells. The mechanism by which transport is effected is unknown. An evolutionarily-based hypothesis for the mechanism of glucose transport is presented here based on reports that insulin has multiple binding sites for glucose. It is proposed that insulin-like peptides were incorporated as modular elements into transmembrane proteins during evolution, resulting in glucose transporting capacity. Homology searching reveals that all GLUT contain multiple copies of insulin-like regions. These regions map onto a model of GLUT in positions that define the glucose transport cores. This observation provides a mechanism for glucose transport involving the diffusion of glucose from one insulin-like glucose-binding region to another. It also suggests a mechanism by which glucose disregulation may occur in both type 1 and type 2 diabetes: insulin rapidly self-glycates under hyperglycemic conditions. Insulin-like regions of GLUT may also self-glycate rapidly, thereby interfering with transport of glucose into cells and disabling GLUT sensing of blood glucose levels. All aspects of the hypothesis are experimentally testable

    Analytic Methods for Optimizing Realtime Crowdsourcing

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    Realtime crowdsourcing research has demonstrated that it is possible to recruit paid crowds within seconds by managing a small, fast-reacting worker pool. Realtime crowds enable crowd-powered systems that respond at interactive speeds: for example, cameras, robots and instant opinion polls. So far, these techniques have mainly been proof-of-concept prototypes: research has not yet attempted to understand how they might work at large scale or optimize their cost/performance trade-offs. In this paper, we use queueing theory to analyze the retainer model for realtime crowdsourcing, in particular its expected wait time and cost to requesters. We provide an algorithm that allows requesters to minimize their cost subject to performance requirements. We then propose and analyze three techniques to improve performance: push notifications, shared retainer pools, and precruitment, which involves recalling retainer workers before a task actually arrives. An experimental validation finds that precruited workers begin a task 500 milliseconds after it is posted, delivering results below the one-second cognitive threshold for an end-user to stay in flow.Comment: Presented at Collective Intelligence conference, 201

    Revolutionary Russia: A History In Documents

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    The Eukaryotic Cell Originated in the Integration and Redistribution of Hyperstructures from Communities of Prokaryotic Cells Based on Molecular Complementarity

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    In the “ecosystems-first” approach to the origins of life, networks of non-covalent assemblies of molecules (composomes), rather than individual protocells, evolved under the constraints of molecular complementarity. Composomes evolved into the hyperstructures of modern bacteria. We extend the ecosystems-first approach to explain the origin of eukaryotic cells through the integration of mixed populations of bacteria. We suggest that mutualism and symbiosis resulted in cellular mergers entailing the loss of redundant hyperstructures, the uncoupling of transcription and translation, and the emergence of introns and multiple chromosomes. Molecular complementarity also facilitated integration of bacterial hyperstructures to perform cytoskeletal and movement functions
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