2,081 research outputs found

    Search for supersymmetric particles from Z decays

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    Thesis (Ph. D.)--Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Dept. of Physics, 1995.Includes bibliographical references (p. 91-95).by Susan Mary Gascon-Shotkin.Ph.D

    Severe Histoplasmosis in Travelers to Nicaragua

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    We investigated an outbreak of unexpectedly severe histoplasmosis among 14 healthy adventure travelers from the United States who visited a bat-infested cave in Nicaragua. Although histoplasmosis has rarely been reported to cause serious illness among travelers, this outbreak demonstrates that cases may be severe among travelers, even young, healthy persons

    Habitat Fragmentation, Variable Edge Effects, and the Landscape-Divergence Hypothesis

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    Edge effects are major drivers of change in many fragmented landscapes, but are often highly variable in space and time. Here we assess variability in edge effects altering Amazon forest dynamics, plant community composition, invading species, and carbon storage, in the world's largest and longest-running experimental study of habitat fragmentation. Despite detailed knowledge of local landscape conditions, spatial variability in edge effects was only partially foreseeable: relatively predictable effects were caused by the differing proximity of plots to forest edge and varying matrix vegetation, but windstorms generated much random variability. Temporal variability in edge phenomena was also only partially predictable: forest dynamics varied somewhat with fragment age, but also fluctuated markedly over time, evidently because of sporadic droughts and windstorms. Given the acute sensitivity of habitat fragments to local landscape and weather dynamics, we predict that fragments within the same landscape will tend to converge in species composition, whereas those in different landscapes will diverge in composition. This ‚Äėlandscape-divergence hypothesis‚Äô, if generally valid, will have key implications for biodiversity-conservation strategies and for understanding the dynamics of fragmented ecosystems

    Bicistronic Lentiviruses Containing a Viral 2A Cleavage Sequence Reliably Co-Express Two Proteins and Restore Vision to an Animal Model of LCA1

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    The disease processes underlying inherited retinal disease are complex and are not completely understood. Many of the corrective gene therapies designed to treat diseases linked to mutations in genes specifically expressed in photoreceptor cells restore function to these cells but fail to stop progression of the disease. There is growing consensus that effective treatments for these diseases will require delivery of multiple therapeutic proteins that will be selected to treat specific aspects of the disease process. The purpose of this study was to design a lentiviral transgene that reliably expresses all of the proteins it encodes and does so in a consistent manner among infected cells. We show, using both in vitro and in vivo analyses, that bicistronic lentiviral transgenes encoding two fluorescent proteins fused to a viral 2A-like cleavage peptide meet these expression criteria. To determine if this transgene design is suitable for therapeutic applications, we replaced one of the fluorescent protein genes with the gene encoding guanylate cyclase -1 (GC1) and delivered lentivirus carrying this transgene to the retinas of the GUCY1*B avian model of Leber congenital amaurosis ‚Äď 1 (LCA1). GUCY1*B chickens carry a null mutation in the GC1 gene that disrupts photoreceptor function and causes blindness at hatching, a phenotype that closely matches that observed in humans with LCA1. We found that treatment of these animals with the 2A lentivector encoding GC1 restored vision to these animals as evidenced by the presence of optokinetic reflexes. We conclude that 2A-like peptides, with proper optimization, can be successfully incorporated into therapeutic vectors designed to deliver multiple proteins to neural retinal. These results highlight the potential of this vector design to serve as a platform for the development of combination therapies designed to enhance or prolong the benefits of corrective gene therapies

    Conservation of Forest Birds: Evidence of a Shifting Baseline in Community Structure

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    Quantifying changes in forest bird diversity is an essential task for developing effective conservation actions. When subtle changes in diversity accumulate over time, annual comparisons may offer an incomplete perspective of changes in diversity. In this case, progressive change, the comparison of changes in diversity from a baseline condition, may offer greater insight because changes in diversity are assessed over longer periods of times. Our objectives were to determine how forest bird diversity has changed over time and whether those changes were associated with forest disturbance.We used North American Breeding Bird Survey data, a time series of Landsat images classified with respect to land cover change, and mixed-effects models to associate changes in forest bird community structure with forest disturbance, latitude, and longitude in the conterminous United States for the years 1985 to 2006. We document a significant divergence from the baseline structure for all birds of similar migratory habit and nest location, and all forest birds as a group from 1985 to 2006. Unexpectedly, decreases in progressive similarity resulted from small changes in richness (<1 species per route for the 22-year study period) and modest losses in abundance (-28.7 - -10.2 individuals per route) that varied by migratory habit and nest location. Forest disturbance increased progressive similarity for Neotropical migrants, permanent residents, ground nesting, and cavity nesting species. We also documented highest progressive similarity in the eastern United States.Contemporary forest bird community structure is changing rapidly over a relatively short period of time (e.g., approximately 22 years). Forest disturbance and forest regeneration are primary factors associated with contemporary forest bird community structure, longitude and latitude are secondary factors, and forest loss is a tertiary factor. Importantly, these findings suggest some regions of the United States may already fall below the habitat amount threshold where fragmentation effects become important predictors of forest bird community structure

    Differential cross section measurements for the production of a W boson in association with jets in proton‚Äďproton collisions at ‚ąös = 7 TeV

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    Measurements are reported of differential cross sections for the production of a W boson, which decays into a muon and a neutrino, in association with jets, as a function of several variables, including the transverse momenta (pT) and pseudorapidities of the four leading jets, the scalar sum of jet transverse momenta (HT), and the difference in azimuthal angle between the directions of each jet and the muon. The data sample of pp collisions at a centre-of-mass energy of 7 TeV was collected with the CMS detector at the LHC and corresponds to an integrated luminosity of 5.0 fb[superscript ‚ąí1]. The measured cross sections are compared to predictions from Monte Carlo generators, MadGraph + pythia and sherpa, and to next-to-leading-order calculations from BlackHat + sherpa. The differential cross sections are found to be in agreement with the predictions, apart from the pT distributions of the leading jets at high pT values, the distributions of the HT at high-HT and low jet multiplicity, and the distribution of the difference in azimuthal angle between the leading jet and the muon at low values.United States. Dept. of EnergyNational Science Foundation (U.S.)Alfred P. Sloan Foundatio

    Optimasi Portofolio Resiko Menggunakan Model Markowitz MVO Dikaitkan dengan Keterbatasan Manusia dalam Memprediksi Masa Depan dalam Perspektif Al-Qur`an