512 research outputs found

    Decrement Operators in Belief Change

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    While research on iterated revision is predominant in the field of iterated belief change, the class of iterated contraction operators received more attention in recent years. In this article, we examine a non-prioritized generalisation of iterated contraction. In particular, the class of weak decrement operators is introduced, which are operators that by multiple steps achieve the same as a contraction. Inspired by Darwiche and Pearl's work on iterated revision the subclass of decrement operators is defined. For both, decrement and weak decrement operators, postulates are presented and for each of them a representation theorem in the framework of total preorders is given. Furthermore, we present two sub-types of decrement operators

    Algorithm for Adapting Cases Represented in a Tractable Description Logic

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    Case-based reasoning (CBR) based on description logics (DLs) has gained a lot of attention lately. Adaptation is a basic task in the CBR inference that can be modeled as the knowledge base revision problem and solved in propositional logic. However, in DLs, it is still a challenge problem since existing revision operators only work well for strictly restricted DLs of the \emph{DL-Lite} family, and it is difficult to design a revision algorithm which is syntax-independent and fine-grained. In this paper, we present a new method for adaptation based on the DL EL\mathcal{EL_{\bot}}. Following the idea of adaptation as revision, we firstly extend the logical basis for describing cases from propositional logic to the DL EL\mathcal{EL_{\bot}}, and present a formalism for adaptation based on EL\mathcal{EL_{\bot}}. Then we present an adaptation algorithm for this formalism and demonstrate that our algorithm is syntax-independent and fine-grained. Our work provides a logical basis for adaptation in CBR systems where cases and domain knowledge are described by the tractable DL EL\mathcal{EL_{\bot}}.Comment: 21 pages. ICCBR 201

    Existence of Monetary Steady States in a Matching Model: Indivisible Money

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    Existence of a monetary steady state is established for a random matching model with divisible goods, indivisible money, and take-it-or-leave-it offers by consumers. There is no restriction on individual money holdings. The background environment is that in papers by Shi and by Trejos and Wright. The monetary steady state shown to exist has nice properties: the value function, defined on money holdings, is increasing and strictly concave, and the measure over money holdings has full support.

    Mitochondrial abnormalities in spinal and bulbar muscular atrophy

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    Spinal and bulbar muscular atrophy (SBMA) is a motor neuron disease caused by polyglutamine expansion mutation in the androgen receptor (AR). We investigated whether the mutant protein alters mitochondrial function. We found that constitutive and doxycycline-induced expression of the mutant AR in MN-1 and PC12 cells, respectively, are associated with depolarization of the mitochondrial membrane. This was mitigated by cyclosporine A, which inhibits opening of the mitochondrial permeability transition pore. We also found that the expression of the mutant protein in the presence of ligand results in an elevated level of reactive oxygen species, which is blocked by the treatment with the antioxidants co-enzyme Q10 and idebenone. The mutant protein in MN-1 cells also resulted in increased Bax, caspase 9 and caspase 3. We assessed the effects of mutant AR on the transcription of mitochondrial proteins and found altered expression of the peroxisome proliferator-activated receptor 纬 coactivator 1 and the mitochondrial specific antioxidant superoxide dismutase-2 in affected tissues of SBMA knock-in mice. In addition, we found that the AR associates with mitochondria in cultured cells. This study thus provides evidence for mitochondrial dysfunction in SBMA cell and animal models, either through indirect effects on the transcription of nuclear-encoded mitochondrial genes or through direct effects of the mutant protein on mitochondria or both. These findings indicate possible benefit from mitochondrial therapy for SBMA

    Simple excision and closure of a distal limb of loop colostomy prolapse by stapler device

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    Stomal prolapse is one of the common complications in transverse colostomy and can be managed conservatively in most cases; however, laparotomy and reconstruction of the stoma may sometimes be required, especially in case of irreducible colostomy prolapse. We have reported a simple local repair with reconstruction of the loop colostomy. We herein report a new more simple technique to avoid laparotomy and allow excision of the irreducible colostomy prolapse and complete closure of the distal limb of loop colostomy when no decompression is required in the distal limb of the stoma. In this procedure, the number of stapler and the time with blood loss for the operation can be saved

    Clinical features of spinal and bulbar muscular atrophy

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    Spinal and bulbar muscular atrophy is an X-linked motor neuron disease caused by a CAG repeat expansion in the androgen receptor gene. To characterize the natural history and define outcome measures for clinical trials, we assessed the clinical history, laboratory findings and muscle strength and function in 57 patients with genetically confirmed disease. We also administered self-assessment questionnaires for activities of daily living, quality of life and erectile function. We found an average delay of over 5 years from onset of weakness to diagnosis. Muscle strength and function correlated directly with serum testosterone levels and inversely with CAG repeat length, age and duration of weakness. Motor unit number estimation was decreased by about half compared to healthy controls. Sensory nerve action potentials were reduced in nearly all subjects. Quantitative muscle assessment and timed 2 min walk may be useful as meaningful indicators of disease status. The direct correlation of testosterone levels with muscle strength indicates that androgens may have a positive effect on muscle function in spinal and bulbar muscular atrophy patients, in addition to the toxic effects described in animal models

    Propositional update operators based on formula/literal dependence

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    International audienceWe present and study a general family of belief update operators in a propositional setting. Its operators are based on formula/literal dependence, which is more fine-grained than the notion of formula/variable dependence that was proposed in the literature: formula/variable dependence is a particular case of formula/literal dependence. Our update operators are defined according to the "forget-then-conjoin" scheme: updating a belief base by an input formula consists in first forgetting in the base every literal on which the input formula has a negative influence, and then conjoining the resulting base with the input formula. The operators of our family differ by the underlying notion of formula/literal dependence, which may be defined syntactically or semantically, and which may or may not exploit further information like known persistent literals and pre-set dependencies. We argue that this allows to handle the frame problem and the ramification problem in a more appropriate way. We evaluate the update operators of our family w.r.t. two important dimensions: the logical dimension, by checking the status of the Katsuno-Mendelzon postulates for update, and the computational dimension, by identifying the complexity of a number of decision problems (including model checking, consistency and inference), both in the general case and in some restricted cases, as well as by studying compactability issues. It follows that several operators of our family are interesting alternatives to previous belief update operators

    Targeting the Neurokinin Receptor 1 with Aprepitant: A Novel Antipruritic Strategy

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    Chronic pruritus is a global clinical problem with a high impact on the quality of life and lack of specific therapies. It is an excruciating and frequent symptom of e.g. uncurable renal, liver and skin diseases which often does not respond to conventional treatment with e.g. antihistamines. Therefore antipruritic therapies which target physiological mechanisms of pruritus need to be developed. Substance P (SP) is a major mediator of pruritus. As it binds to the neurokinin receptor 1 (NKR1), we evaluated if the application of a NKR1 antagonist would significantly decrease chronic pruritus.Twenty hitherto untreatable patients with chronic pruritus (12 female, 8 male; mean age, 66.7 years) were treated with the NKR1 antagonist aprepitant 80 mg for one week. 16 of 20 patients (80%) experienced a considerable reduction of itch intensity, as assessed by the visual analog scale (VAS, range 0 to 10). Considering all patients, the mean value of pruritus intensity was significantly reduced from 8.4 VAS points (SD +/-1.7) before treatment to 4.9 VAS points (SD +/-3.2) (p<0.001, CI 1.913-5.187). Patients with dermatological diseases (e.g. atopic diathesis, prurigo nodularis) had the best profit from the treatment. Side-effects were mild (nausea, vertigo, and drowsiness) and only occurred in three patients.The high response rate in patients with therapy refractory pruritus suggests that the NKR1 antagonist aprepitant may indeed exhibit antipruritic effects and may present a novel, effective treatment strategy based on pathophysiology of chronic pruritus. The results are promising enough to warrant confirming the efficacy of NKR1 antagonists in a randomized, controlled clinical trial

    Ablation of Proliferating Cells in the CNS Exacerbates Motor Neuron Disease Caused by Mutant Superoxide Dismutase

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    Proliferation of glia and immune cells is a common pathological feature of many neurodegenerative diseases including amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS). Here, to investigate the role of proliferating cells in motor neuron disease, SOD1G93A transgenic mice were treated intracerebroventicularly (ICV) with the anti-mitotic drug cytosine arabinoside (Ara-C). ICV delivery of Ara-C accelerated disease progression in SOD1G93A mouse model of ALS. Ara-C treatment caused substantial decreases in the number of microglia, NG2+ progenitors, Olig2+ cells and CD3+ T cells in the lumbar spinal cord of symptomatic SOD1G93A transgenic mice. Exacerbation of disease was also associated with significant alterations in the expression inflammatory molecules IL-1尾, IL-6, TGF-尾 and the growth factor IGF-1
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