5,398 research outputs found

    On "New Massive" 4D Gravity

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    We construct a four-dimensional (4D) gauge theory that propagates, unitarily, the five polarization modes of a massive spin-2 particle. These modes are described by a "dual" graviton gauge potential and the Lagrangian is 4th-order in derivatives. As the construction mimics that of 3D "new massive gravity", we call this 4D model (linearized) "new massive dual gravity". We analyse its massless limit, and discuss similarities to the Eddington-Schroedinger model.Comment: 17 pages, v2 : version published in JHE

    Incorporating bio-physical sciences into a decision support tool for sustainable urban planning

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    Deciding upon optimum planning actions in terms of sustainable urban planning involves the consideration of multiple environmental and socio-economic criteria. The transformation of natural landscapes to urban areas affects energy and material fluxes. An important aspect of the urban environment is the urban metabolism, and changes in such metabolism need to be considered for sustainable planning decisions. A spatial Decision Support System (DSS) prototyped within the European FP7-funded project BRIDGE (sustainaBle uRban plannIng Decision support accountinG for urban mEtabolism), enables accounting for the urban metabolism of planning actions, by exploiting the current knowledge and technology of biophysical sciences. The main aim of the BRIDGE project was to bridge the knowledge and communication gap between urban planners and environmental scientists and to illustrate the advantages of considering detailed environmental information in urban planning processes. The developed DSS prototype integrates biophysical observations and simulation techniques with socio-economic aspects in fiveEuropean cities, selected as case studies for the pilot application of the tool. This paper describes the design and implementation of the BRIDGE DSS prototype, illustrates some examples of use, and highlights the need for further research and development in the field

    Identification of flavin-containing monooxygenase 5 (FMO5) as a regulator of glucose homeostasis and a potential sensor of gut bacteria

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    We have previously identified flavin-containing monooxygenase 5 (FMO5) as a regulator of metabolic aging. The aim of the present study was to investigate the role of FMO5 in glucose homeostasis and the impact of diet and gut flora on the phenotype of mice in which the Fmo5 gene has been disrupted (Fmo5−/− mice). In comparison with wild-type (WT) counterparts, Fmo5−/− mice are resistant to age-related changes in glucose homeostasis and maintain the higher glucose tolerance and insulin sensitivity characteristic of young animals. When fed a high-fat diet, they are protected against weight gain and reduction of insulin sensitivity. The phenotype of Fmo5−/− mice is independent of diet and the gut microbiome and is determined solely by the host genotype. Fmo5−/− mice have metabolic characteristics similar to those of germ-free mice, indicating that FMO5 plays a role in sensing or responding to gut bacteria. In WT mice, FMO5 is present in the mucosal epithelium of the gastrointestinal tract where it is induced in response to a high-fat diet. In comparison with WT mice, Fmo5−/− mice have fewer colonic goblet cells, and they differ in the production of the colonic hormone resistin-like molecule β. Fmo5−/− mice have lower concentrations of tumor necrosis factor α in plasma and of complement component 3 in epididymal white adipose tissue, indicative of improved inflammatory tone. Our results implicate FMO5 as a regulator of body weight and of glucose disposal and insulin sensitivity and, thus, identify FMO5 as a potential novel therapeutic target for obesity and insulin resistance

    The Microfloral Analysis of Secondary Caries Biofilm around Class I and Class II Composite and Amalgam Fillings

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    <p>Abstract</p> <p>Background</p> <p>Secondary caries is responsible for 60 percent of all replacement restorations in the typical dental practice. The diversity of the bacterial sources and the different types of filling materials could play a role in secondary caries. The aim of this study was to determine and compare the microbial spectrum of secondary caries biofilms around amalgam and composite resin restorations.</p> <p>Methods</p> <p>Clinical samples were collected from freshly extracted teeth diagnosed with clinical secondary caries. Samples were categorized into four groups according to the types of restoration materials and the classification of the cavity. Biofilms were harvested from the tooth-restoration interface using a dental explorer and after dilution were incubated on special agars. The bacteria were identified using the biochemical appraisal system. Statistical calculations were carried out using SPSS11.5 software to analyze the prevalence of the bacteria involved in secondary caries.</p> <p>Results</p> <p>Samples from a total of four groups were collected: two groups were collected from amalgam restorations, each had 21 samples from both Class I and Class II caries; and the other two groups were from composite resin restorations, each had 13 samples from both class I and class II caries. Our results showed: (1) Anaerobic species were dominant in both restoration materials. (2) In terms of the types of individual bacteria, no significant differences were found among the four groups according to the geometric mean of the detected bacteria (P > 0.05). However, there were significant differences among the detected bacteria within each group (P < 0.05). The composition of each bacterium had no statistical difference among the four groups (P > 0.05), but showed significant differences among the detected bacteria in each group (P < 0.05). (3) Among the four groups, there were no significant differences for the detection rate of each bacterium (P > 0.05), however, the detection rate of each bacterium within each group was statistically different among the detected bacteria (P < 0.05).</p> <p>Conclusions</p> <p>The proportion of obligatory anaerobic species was much greater than the facultative anaerobic species in the biofilm of secondary caries. Statistically, the materials of restoration and the location of secondary caries did not show any significant effects on the composition of the microflora.</p

    Cathepsin B-associated Activation of Amyloidogenic Pathway in Murine Mucopolysaccharidosis Type I Brain Cortex

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    Mucopolysaccharidosis type I (MPS I) is caused by genetic deficiency of alpha-l-iduronidase and impairment of lysosomal catabolism of heparan sulfate and dermatan sulfate. In the brain, these substrates accumulate in the lysosomes of neurons and glial cells, leading to neuroinflammation and neurodegeneration. Their storage also affects lysosomal homeostasis-inducing activity of several lysosomal proteases including cathepsin B (CATB). In the central nervous system, increased CATB activity has been associated with the deposition of amyloid plaques due to an alternative pro-amyloidogenic processing of the amyloid precursor protein (APP), suggesting a potential role of this enzyme in the neuropathology of MPS I. In this study, we report elevated levels of protein expression and activity of CATB in cortex tissues of 6-month-old MPS I (Idua -/- mice. Besides, increased CATB leakage from lysosomes to the cytoplasm of Idua -/- cortical pyramidal neurons was indicative of damaged lysosomal membranes. The increased CATB activity coincided with an elevated level of the 16-kDa C-terminal APP fragment, which together with unchanged levels of beta-secretase 1 was suggestive for the role of this enzyme in the amyloidogenic APP processing. Neuronal accumulation of Thioflavin-S-positive misfolded protein aggregates and drastically increased levels of neuroinflammatory glial fibrillary acidic protein (GFAP)-positive astrocytes and CD11b-positive activated microglia were observed in Idua -/- cortex by confocal fluorescent microscopy. Together, our results point to the existence of a novel CATB-associated alternative amyloidogenic pathway in MPS I brain induced by lysosomal storage and potentially leading to neurodegeneration

    Fluid flow through porous media using distinct element based numerical method

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    Many analytical and numerical methods have been developed to describe and analyse fluid flow through the reservoir’s porous media. The medium considered by most of these models is continuum based homogeneous media. But if the formation is not homogenous or if there is some discontinuity in the formation, most of these models become very complex and their solutions lose their accuracy, especially when the shape or reservoir geometry and boundary conditions are complex. In this paper, distinct element method (DEM) is used to simulate fluid flow in porous media. The DEM method is independent of the initial and boundary conditions, as well as reservoir geometry and discontinuity. The DEM based model proposed in this study is appeared to be unique in nature with capability to be used for any reservoir with higher degrees of complexity associated with the shape and geometry of its porous media, conditions of fluid flow, as well as initial and boundary conditions. This model has first been developed by Itasca Consulting Company and is further improved in this paper. Since the release of the model by Itasca, it has not been validated for fluid flow application in porous media, especially in case of petroleum reservoir. In this paper, two scenarios of linear and radial fluid flow in a finite reservoir are considered. Analytical models for these two cases are developed to set a benchmark for the comparison of simulation data. It is demonstrated that the simulation results are in good agreement with analytical results. Another major improvement in the model is using the servo controlled walls instead of particles to introduce tectonic stresses on the formation to simulate more realistic situations. The proposed model is then used to analyse fluid flow and pressure behaviour for hydraulically induced fractured and naturally fractured reservoir to justify the potential application of the model

    Dynamic Analysis of Vascular Morphogenesis Using Transgenic Quail Embryos

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    Background: One of the least understood and most central questions confronting biologists is how initially simple clusters or sheet-like cell collectives can assemble into highly complex three-dimensional functional tissues and organs. Due to the limits of oxygen diffusion, blood vessels are an essential and ubiquitous presence in all amniote tissues and organs. Vasculogenesis, the de novo self-assembly of endothelial cell (EC) precursors into endothelial tubes, is the first step in blood vessel formation [1]. Static imaging and in vitro models are wholly inadequate to capture many aspects of vascular pattern formation in vivo, because vasculogenesis involves dynamic changes of the endothelial cells and of the forming blood vessels, in an embryo that is changing size and shape. Methodology/Principal Findings: We have generated Tie1 transgenic quail lines Tg(tie1:H2B-eYFP) that express H2B-eYFP in all of their endothelial cells which permit investigations into early embryonic vascular morphogenesis with unprecedented clarity and insight. By combining the power of molecular genetics with the elegance of dynamic imaging, we follow the precise patterning of endothelial cells in space and time. We show that during vasculogenesis within the vascular plexus, ECs move independently to form the rudiments of blood vessels, all while collectively moving with gastrulating tissues that flow toward the embryo midline. The aortae are a composite of somatic derived ECs forming its dorsal regions and the splanchnic derived ECs forming its ventral region. The ECs in the dorsal regions of the forming aortae exhibit variable mediolateral motions as they move rostrally; those in more ventral regions show significant lateral-to-medial movement as they course rostrally. Conclusions/Significance: The present results offer a powerful approach to the major challenge of studying the relative role(s) of the mechanical, molecular, and cellular mechanisms of vascular development. In past studies, the advantages of the molecular genetic tools available in mouse were counterbalanced by the limited experimental accessibility needed for imaging and perturbation studies. Avian embryos provide the needed accessibility, but few genetic resources. The creation of transgenic quail with labeled endothelia builds upon the important roles that avian embryos have played in previous studies of vascular development

    A new method to quantify and compare the multiple components of fitness-A study case with kelp niche partition by divergent microstage adaptations to Temperature

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    Point 1 Management of crops, commercialized or protected species, plagues or life-cycle evolution are subjects requiring comparisons among different demographic strategies. The simpler methods fail in relating changes in vital rates with changes in population viability whereas more complex methods lack accuracy by neglecting interactions among vital rates. Point 2 The difference between the fitness (evaluated by the population growth rate.) of two alternative demographies is decomposed into the contributions of the differences between the pair-wised vital rates and their interactions. This is achieved through a full Taylor expansion (i.e. remainder = 0) of the demographic model. The significance of each term is determined by permutation tests under the null hypothesis that all demographies come from the same pool. Point 3 An example is given with periodic demographic matrices of the microscopic haploid phase of two kelp cryptic species observed to partition their niche occupation along the Chilean coast. The method provided clear and synthetic results showing conditional differentiation of reproduction is an important driver for their differences in fitness along the latitudinal temperature gradient. But it also demonstrated that interactions among vital rates cannot be neglected as they compose a significant part of the differences between demographies. Point 4 This method allows researchers to access the effects of multiple effective changes in a life-cycle from only two experiments. Evolutionists can determine with confidence the effective causes for changes in fitness whereas population managers can determine best strategies from simpler experimental designs.CONICYT-FRENCH EMBASSADY Ph.D. gran

    Goldstino superfields for spontaneously broken N=2 supersymmetry

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    We examine spontaneously broken N=2 supersymmetry in four dimensions and associate a spinor superfield with each Goldstino via a finite supersymmetry transformation with parameters that are the Grassmann coordinates of N=2 superspace. Making use of a special choice of coset parametrization allows us to develop a version of nonlinearly realized N=2 supersymmetry for which the associated Goldstino superfields are defined on harmonic superspace, thereby providing a natural mechanism for construction of a Goldstino action. The corresponding superfield Lagrangian is an O(4) multiplet. This property is used to reformulate the Goldstino action in projective superspace and in conventional N=2 superspace. We show how to generate matter couplings of the Goldstinos to supersymmetric matter using the N=2 harmonic, projective and full superspaces. As a bi-product of our consideration, we also derive an N=2 chiral Goldstino action.Comment: 20 pages, typos corrected, comments adde