161 research outputs found

    Can quantum gas microscopes directly image exotic glassy phases?

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    With the advent of spatially resolved fluorescence imaging in quantum gas microscopes (see e.g. [1]), it is now possible to directly image glassy phases and probe the local effects of disorder in a highly controllable setup. Here we present numerical calculations using a spatially resolved local mean-field theory, show that it captures the essential physics of the disordered system, and use it to simulate the density distributions seen in single-shot fluorescence microscopy [2]. From these simulated images we extract local properties of the phases which are measurable by a quantum gas microscope and show that unambiguous detection of the Bose glass is possible. In particular, we show that experimental determination of the Edwards-Anderson order parameter is possible in a strongly correlated quantum system using existing experiments. We also suggest modifications to the experiments by using spatial light modulators (see [3] and references therein) to tailor the lattice, which will allow further properties of the Bose glass to be measured. References: [1] E Haller, et al., "Single-atom imaging of fermions in a quantum-gas microscope" Nature Physics 11, 738 (2015) [2] S J Thomson, et al., "Measuring the Edwards-Anderson order parameter of the Bose glass: A quantum gas microscope approach" Phys. Rev. A 94, 051601(R) (2016) [3] F Buccheri, et al., "Holographic optical traps for atom-based topological Kondo devices" New J. Phys. 18, 075012 (2016)PostprintNon peer reviewe

    Human epicardial adipose tissue expresses a pathogenic profile of adipocytokines in patients with cardiovascular disease

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    Introduction: Inflammation contributes to cardiovascular disease and is exacerbated with increased adiposity, particularly omental adiposity; however, the role of epicardial fat is poorly understood. Methods: For these studies the expression of inflammatory markers was assessed in epicardial fat biopsies from coronary artery bypass grafting (CABG) patients using quantitative RT-PCR. Further, the effects of chronic medications, including statins, as well as peri-operative glucose, insulin and potassium infusion, on gene expression were also assessed. Circulating resistin, CRP, adiponectin and leptin levels were determined to assess inflammation. Results: The expression of adiponectin, resistin and other adipocytokine mRNAs were comparable to that in omental fat. Epicardial CD45 expression was significantly higher than control depots (p < 0.01) indicating significant infiltration of macrophages. Statin treated patients showed significantly lower epicardial expression of IL-6 mRNA, in comparison with the control abdominal depots (p < 0.001). The serum profile of CABG patients showed significantly higher levels of both CRP (control: 1.28 ± 1.57 μg/mL vs CABG: 9.11 ± 15.7 μg/mL; p < 0.001) and resistin (control: 10.53 ± 0.81 ng/mL vs CABG: 16.8 ± 1.69 ng/mL; p < 0.01) and significantly lower levels of adiponectin (control: 29.1 ± 14.8 μg/mL vs CABG: 11.9 ± 6.0 μg/mL; p < 0.05) when compared to BMI matched controls. Conclusion: Epicardial and omental fat exhibit a broadly comparable pathogenic mRNA profile, this may arise in part from macrophage infiltration into the epicardial fat. This study highlights that chronic inflammation occurs locally as well as systemically potentially contributing further to the pathogenesis of coronary artery disease

    Spin–orbit precession for eccentric black hole binaries at first order in the mass ratio

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    We consider spin–orbit ('geodetic') precession for a compact binary in strong-field gravity. Specifically, we compute ψ, the ratio of the accumulated spin-precession and orbital angles over one radial period, for a spinning compact body of mass m 1 and spin s 1, with s1Gm12/c{{s}_{1}}\ll Gm_{1}^{2}/c , orbiting a non-rotating black hole. We show that ψ can be computed for eccentric orbits in both the gravitational self-force and post-Newtonian frameworks, and that the results appear to be consistent. We present a post-Newtonian expansion for ψ at next-to-next-to-leading order, and a Lorenz-gauge gravitational self-force calculation for ψ at first order in the mass ratio. The latter provides new numerical data in the strong-field regime to inform the effective one-body model of the gravitational two-body problem. We conclude that ψ complements the Detweiler redshift z as a key invariant quantity characterizing eccentric orbits in the gravitational two-body problem

    The ENCODE Project at UC Santa Cruz

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    The goal of the Encyclopedia Of DNA Elements (ENCODE) Project is to identify all functional elements in the human genome. The pilot phase is for comparison of existing methods and for the development of new methods to rigorously analyze a defined 1% of the human genome sequence. Experimental datasets are focused on the origin of replication, DNase I hypersensitivity, chromatin immunoprecipitation, promoter function, gene structure, pseudogenes, non-protein-coding RNAs, transcribed RNAs, multiple sequence alignment and evolutionarily constrained elements. The ENCODE project at UCSC website () is the primary portal for the sequence-based data produced as part of the ENCODE project. In the pilot phase of the project, over 30 labs provided experimental results for a total of 56 browser tracks supported by 385 database tables. The site provides researchers with a number of tools that allow them to visualize and analyze the data as well as download data for local analyses. This paper describes the portal to the data, highlights the data that has been made available, and presents the tools that have been developed within the ENCODE project. Access to the data and types of interactive analysis that are possible are illustrated through supplemental examples

    Compressive properties of commercially available polyurethane foams as mechanical models for osteoporotic human cancellous bone

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    <p>Abstract</p> <p>Background</p> <p>Polyurethane (PU) foam is widely used as a model for cancellous bone. The higher density foams are used as standard biomechanical test materials, but none of the low density PU foams are universally accepted as models for osteoporotic (OP) bone. The aim of this study was to determine whether low density PU foam might be suitable for mimicking human OP cancellous bone.</p> <p>Methods</p> <p>Quasi-static compression tests were performed on PU foam cylinders of different lengths (3.9 and 7.7 mm) and of different densities (0.09, 0.16 and 0.32 g.cm<sup>-3</sup>), to determine the Young's modulus, yield strength and energy absorbed to yield.</p> <p>Results</p> <p>Young's modulus values were 0.08–0.93 MPa for the 0.09 g.cm<sup>-3 </sup>foam and from 15.1–151.4 MPa for the 0.16 and 0.32 g.cm<sup>-3 </sup>foam. Yield strength values were 0.01–0.07 MPa for the 0.09 g.cm<sup>-3 </sup>foam and from 0.9–4.5 MPa for the 0.16 and 0.32 g.cm<sup>-3 </sup>foam. The energy absorbed to yield was found to be negligible for all foam cylinders.</p> <p>Conclusion</p> <p>Based on these results, it is concluded that 0.16 g.cm<sup>-3 </sup>PU foam may prove to be suitable as an OP cancellous bone model when fracture stress, but not energy dissipation, is of concern.</p

    Biomass offsets little or none of permafrost carbon release from soils, streams, and wildfire: an expert assessment

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    As the permafrost region warms, its large organic carbon pool will be increasingly vulnerable to decomposition, combustion, and hydrologic export. Models predict that some portion of this release will be offset by increased production of Arctic and boreal biomass; however, the lack of robust estimates of net carbon balance increases the risk of further overshooting international emissions targets. Precise empirical or model-based assessments of the critical factors driving carbon balance are unlikely in the near future, so to address this gap, we present estimates from 98 permafrost-region experts of the response of biomass, wildfire, and hydrologic carbon flux to climate change. Results suggest that contrary to model projections, total permafrost-region biomass could decrease due to water stress and disturbance, factors that are not adequately incorporated in current models. Assessments indicate that end-of-the-century organic carbon release from Arctic rivers and collapsing coastlines could increase by 75% while carbon loss via burning could increase four-fold. Experts identified water balance, shifts in vegetation community, and permafrost degradation as the key sources of uncertainty in predicting future system response. In combination with previous findings, results suggest the permafrost region will become a carbon source to the atmosphere by 2100 regardless of warming scenario but that 65%–85% of permafrost carbon release can still be avoided if human emissions are actively reduced

    Kimberlites reveal 2.5-billion-year evolution of a deep, isolated mantle reservoir

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    The widely accepted paradigm of Earth's geochemical evolution states that the successive extraction of melts from the mantle over the past 4.5 billion years formed the continental crust, and produced at least one complementary melt-depleted reservoir that is now recognized as the upper-mantle source of mid-ocean-ridge basalts1. However, geochemical modelling and the occurrence of high 3He/4He (that is, primordial) signatures in some volcanic rocks suggest that volumes of relatively undifferentiated mantle may reside in deeper, isolated regions2. Some basalts from large igneous provinces may provide temporally restricted glimpses of the most primitive parts of the mantle3,4, but key questions regarding the longevity of such sources on planetary timescales—and whether any survive today—remain unresolved. Kimberlites, small-volume volcanic rocks that are the source of most diamonds, offer rare insights into aspects of the composition of the Earth’s deep mantle. The radiogenic isotope ratios of kimberlites of different ages enable us to map the evolution of this domain through time. Here we show that globally distributed kimberlites originate from a single homogeneous reservoir with an isotopic composition that is indicative of a uniform and pristine mantle source, which evolved in isolation over at least 2.5 billion years of Earth history—to our knowledge, the only such reservoir that has been identified to date. Around 200 million years ago, extensive volumes of the same source were perturbed, probably as a result of contamination by exogenic material. The distribution of affected kimberlites suggests that this event may be related to subduction along the margin of the Pangaea supercontinent. These results reveal a long-lived and globally extensive mantle reservoir that underwent subsequent disruption, possibly heralding a marked change to large-scale mantle-mixing regimes. These processes may explain why uncontaminated primordial mantle is so difficult to identify in recent mantle-derived melts

    Virological failure and development of new resistance mutations according to CD4 count at combination antiretroviral therapy initiation

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    Objectives: No randomized controlled trials have yet reported an individual patient benefit of initiating combination antiretroviral therapy (cART) at CD4 counts > 350 cells/μL. It is hypothesized that earlier initiation of cART in asymptomatic and otherwise healthy individuals may lead to poorer adherence and subsequently higher rates of resistance development. Methods: In a large cohort of HIV-positive individuals, we investigated the emergence of new resistance mutations upon virological treatment failure according to the CD4 count at the initiation of cART. Results: Of 7918 included individuals, 6514 (82.3%), 996 (12.6%) and 408 (5.2%) started cART with a CD4 count ≤ 350, 351-499 and ≥ 500 cells/μL, respectively. Virological rebound occurred while on cART in 488 (7.5%), 46 (4.6%) and 30 (7.4%) with a baseline CD4 count ≤ 350, 351-499 and ≥ 500 cells/μL, respectively. Only four (13.0%) individuals with a baseline CD4 count > 350 cells/μL in receipt of a resistance test at viral load rebound were found to have developed new resistance mutations. This compared to 107 (41.2%) of those with virological failure who had initiated cART with a CD4 count < 350 cells/μL. Conclusions: We found no evidence of increased rates of resistance development when cART was initiated at CD4 counts above 350 cells/μL. HIV Medicin

    Mechanisms Involved in Nicotinic Acetylcholine Receptor-Induced Neurotransmitter Release from Sympathetic Nerve Terminals in the Mouse Vas Deferens

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    Prejunctional nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs) amplify postganglionic sympathetic neurotransmission, and there are indications that intraterminal Ca2+ stores might be involved. However, the mechanisms by which nAChR activation stimulates neurotransmitter release at such junctions is unknown. Rapid local delivery (picospritzing) of the nAChR agonist epibatidine was combined with intracellular sharp microelectrode recording to monitor spontaneous and field-stimulation-evoked neurotransmitter release from sympathetic nerve terminals in the mouse isolated vas deferens. Locally applied epibatidine (1 µM) produced ‘epibatidine-induced depolarisations’ (EIDs) that were similar in shape to spontaneous excitatory junction potentials (SEJPs) and were abolished by nonselective nAChR antagonists and the purinergic desensitizing agonist α,β-methylene ATP. The amplitude distribution of EIDs was only slightly shifted towards lower amplitudes by the selective α7 nAChR antagonists α-bungarotoxin and methyllcaconitine, the voltage-gated Na+ channel blocker tetrodotoxin or by blocking voltage-gated Ca2+ channels with Cd2+. Lowering the extracellular Ca2+ concentration reduced the frequency of EIDs by 69%, but more surprisingly, the Ca2+-induced Ca2+ release blocker ryanodine greatly decreased the amplitude (by 41%) and the frequency of EIDs by 36%. Ryanodine had no effect on electrically-evoked neurotransmitter release, paired-pulse facilitation, SEJP frequency, SEJP amplitude or SEJP amplitude distribution. These results show that activation of non-α7 nAChRs on sympathetic postganglionic nerve terminals induces high-amplitude junctional potentials that are argued to represent multipacketed neurotransmitter release synchronized by intraterminal Ca2+-induced Ca2+ release, triggered by Ca2+ influx directly through the nAChR. This nAChR-induced neurotransmitter release can be targeted pharmacologically without affecting spontaneous or electrically-evoked neurotransmitter release
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