174 research outputs found

    Activation cross sections of \alpha-induced reactions on nat^{nat}Zn for Ge and Ga production

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    The production cross sections of 68,69^{68,69}Ge and 66,67^{66,67}Ga by \alpha-induced reactions on nat^{nat}Zn have been measured using the stacked-foil activation method and off-line \gamma-ray spectrometry from their threshold energies to 50.7 MeV. The derived cross sections were compared with the previous experimental data and the calculated values in the TENLD-2017 library. Our result shows a slightly larger amplitude than the previous data at the peak, though the peak energy is consistent with them.Comment: 12 pages, 6 figure

    A comparative study of peroxisomal structures in Hansenula polymorpha pex mutants

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    In a recent study, we performed a systematic genome analysis for the conservation of genes involved in peroxisome biogenesis (PEX genes) in various fungi. We have now performed a systematic study of the morphology of peroxisome remnants (‘ghosts’) in Hansenula polymorpha pex mutants (pex1–pex20) and the level of peroxins and matrix proteins in these strains. To this end, all available H. polymorpha pex strains were grown under identical cultivation conditions in glucose-limited chemostat cultures and analyzed in detail. The H. polymorpha pex mutants could be categorized into four distinct groups, namely pex mutants containing: (1) virtually normal peroxisomal structures (pex7, pex17, pex20); (2) small peroxisomal membrane structures with a distinct lumen (pex2, pex4, pex5, pex10, pex12, pex14); (3) multilayered membrane structures lacking apparent matrix protein content (pex1, pex6, pex8, pex13); and (4) no peroxisomal structures (pex3, pex19).

    Hydrophilic statin suppresses vein graft intimal hyperplasia via endothelial cell-tropic Rho-kinase inhibition

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    BackgroundRecent studies suggest that statins can protect the vasculature in a manner that is independent of their lipid-lowering activity through inhibition of the small guanosine triphosphate-binding protein, Rho, and Rho-associated kinase. Little information is available on the inhibitory effect of statins on vein graft intimal hyperplasia, the main cause of late graft failure after bypass grafting. We therefore examined the effects of a hydrophilic statin on vein graft intimal hyperplasia in vivo and Rho-kinase activity in vitro.MethodsIn the first experiment, rabbits were randomized to a control group (n = 7) that was fed regular rabbit chow or to a pravastatin group (n = 7) that was fed regular rabbit chow supplemented with 10 mg/kg pravastatin sodium. The branches of the jugular vein were ligated and an approximately 3-cm segment of the jugular vein was taken for an autologous reversed-vein graft. The carotid artery was cut and replaced with the harvested autologous jugular vein. At 2 and 4 weeks after the operation, vein grafts in both groups were harvested, and intimal hyperplasia of the vein grafts was assessed. In the second experiment, human umbilical vein endothelial cells and vascular smooth muscle cells were cultured and then treated with 1 μmol/L and 30 μmol/L pravastatin for 24 hours and harvested. Immunoblotting was performed on the resulting precipitates. Quantitative evaluation of phosphorylated myosin binding subunit and endothelial nitric oxide synthase was performed by densitometric analysis.ResultsWe demonstrated that oral administration of the hydrophilic statin pravastatin to normocholesterolemic rabbits inhibited intimal hyperplasia of carotid interposition-reversed jugular vein grafts 4 weeks after implantation (pravastatin group, 39.5 ± 3.5 μm vs control group, 64.0 ± 7.1 μm; n = 7; P < .05) and suppressed cell proliferation and apoptosis in the neointima 2 weeks after implantation. In addition, we found that pravastatin inhibited Rho-kinase activity and accelerated endothelial nitric oxide synthase expression in human umbilical vein endothelial cells but did not inhibit Rho-kinase activity in vascular smooth muscle cells.ConclusionsThese novel findings clearly demonstrate that a hydrophilic statin can suppress intimal hyperplasia of the vein graft in vivo and also show endothelial cell-tropic inhibition of Rho-kinase in vitro. Furthermore, these results strongly support the clinical use of hydrophilic statins to prevent intimal hyperplasia of the vein graft after bypass grafting.Clinical RelevanceLate graft failure caused by neointimal hyperplasia limits the efficacy of vein grafting. Various treatments were examined to reduce neointimal hyperplasia, but a standard clinical treatment has not yet been established. We report here the inhibitory effect of pravastatin on the development of vein graft intimal hyperplasia. In addition, we demonstrate that pravastatin showed endothelial cell-tropic benefits through both the inhibition of Rho-kinase activity and acceleration of eNOS expression in vitro. Because the clinical benefits and safety of pravastatin have been established to a certain extent through long-term clinical usage, pravastatin may soon become standard treatment after vein bypass grafting

    Human Desmocollin 1 (Dsc1) Is an Autoantigen for the Subcorneal Pustular Dermatosis Type of IgA Pemphigus

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    IgA pemphigus showing IgA anti-keratinocyte cell surface autoantibodies is divided into subcorneal pustular dermatosis (SPD) and intraepidermal neutrophilic IgA dermatosis (IEN) types. We previously showed by immunoblotting that IgA from some IgA pemphigus patients reacted with bovine desmocollins (Dsc), but not human Dsc. To determine the antigen for IgA pemphigus, we focused on conformation-dependent epitopes of Dsc, because sera of patients with classical pemphigus recognize conformation-sensitive epitopes of desmogleins. We constructed mammalian expression vectors containing the entire coding sequences of human Dsc1, Dsc2, and Dsc3 and transiently transfected them into COS7 cells by lipofection. Immunofluorescence of COS7 cells transfected with single human Dscs showed that IgA antibodies of all six SPD-type IgA pemphigus cases reacted with the surface of cells expressing Dsc1, but not with cells expressing Dsc2 or Dsc3. In contrast, none of seven IEN-type IgA pemphigus cases reacted with cells transfected with any Dscs. These results convincingly indicate that human Dsc1 is an autoantigen for SPD-type IgA pemphigus, suggesting the possibility of an important role for Dsc1 in the pathogenesis of this disease. This study shows that a Dsc can be an autoimmune target in human skin disease

    Spin-polarized saddle points in the topological surface states of the elemental Bismuth revealed by a pump-probe spin-resolved ARPES

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    We use a pump-probe, spin-, and angle-resolved photoemission spectroscopy (ARPES) with a 10.7 eV laser accessible up to the Brillouin zone edge, and reveal for the first time the entire band structure, including the unoccupied side, for the elemental bismuth (Bi) with the spin-polarized surface states. Our data identify Bi as in a strong topological insulator phase (Z2Z_2=1) against the prediction of most band calculations. We unveil that the unoccupied topological surface states possess spin-polarized saddle points yielding the van Hove singularity, providing an excellent platform for the future development of opto-spintronics.Comment: 6 pages, 4 figure

    The Effect of Non-Axisymmetry of Magnetic Configurations on Radial Electric Field Transition Properties in the LHD

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    Transition property of the radial electric field (Er) in LHD have been theoretically investigated and also applied to explain experimental results. Especially, effects of the helicity of the magnetic configuration on the condition to realize the electron root are examined. Larger helicity makes the threshold collisionality higher. This is attributed to the nonlinear dependence of Γe(Er) in a low collisional regime. This interesting feature predicts that the threshold temperature becomes higher for a case of smaller helicity. The variation of the threshold density anticipated from the analysis for cases with different magnetic axis position is qualitatively verified in the density scan experiment

    Complications of Flex URS for Renal and Ureteral Calculi during the Learning Curve

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    Background: The flexible ureterorenoscope (URS) and associated devices have developed rapidly. However, despite its therapeutic benefits, URS may be associated with some complications. To the best of our knowledge, there are no studies discussing the complications of flexURS during the learning curve. Methods: A retrospective review of the records of patients who underwent flexURS from January 2005 to June 2013 was performed. To compare the complications after the introduction of flexURS, patients were divided into four groups based on the surgeon’s training experience, that is, based on the number of cases performed by the surgeon. A total of 219 cases underwent flexURS. Groups 1, 2, 3, and 4 included 35, 50, 50, and 84 cases, respectively. The complications were classified using the Clavien system (I–IV). Results: The mean operation time and stone-free rate were significantly different (p < 0.001, p = 0.013, respectively). The total complication rates were 13.6, 10, 8.3, and 3.2%, respectively (p = 0.068). The more the surgeon’s experience, the less was the complication rate. Despite our best efforts, the incidence of urosepsis was not reduced (p = 0.902). Conclusions: To reduce severe complications, it is necessary to have performed about 100 cases. Increased surgeon experience tended to decrease the risk of severe complications, but the incidence of urosepsis was not reduced

    Multifocal Motor Neuropathy

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    Objective: Our objective was to do an epidemiologic survey of patients with multifocal motor neuropathy (MMN) in comparison with those with amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) in Japan. Methods: In this retrospective study, we examined 46 patients with MMN and 1,051 patients with ALS from major neuromuscular centers in Japan from 2005 to 2009. Diagnosis was based on the European Federation of Neurological Societies/Peripheral Nerve Society (EFNS/PNS) and the revised El Escorial criteria. The efficacy of intravenous immunoglobulin (IVIg) was also taken into consideration in the diagnosis of MMN. Results: The ratio of MMN to ALS patients (0-0.10) varied among the centers, but mostly converged to 0.05. The prevalence was estimated to be 0.29 MMN patients and 6.63 ALS patients per 100,000 population. Conclusions: The frequency of MMN patients was around 1 out of 20 ALS patients, and MMN was possibly underdiagnosed in some centers