1,068 research outputs found

    Host-plant acceptance by aphids: cues initiating reproduction

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    The host-plant acceptance behaviour of aphids was examined, in two aphid species, the bird cherry-oat aphid, Rhopalosiphum padi and the pea aphid, Acyrthosiphum pisum, to elucidate the recognition factors used to assess plant suitability for parthenogenetic reproduction. In addition, host-plant chemistry was investigated to study possible cues that initiated reproduction. The probing and parturition behaviour of R. padi on barley, Hordeum vulgare, or bird cherry leaves, Prunus padus, were monitored by electrical penetration graph (EPG) coupled with a simultaneous video recording. The autumn winged gynoparae and the summer winged virginoparae initiated reproduction on their host plants, P. padus and H. vulgare, respectively, before phloem contact occurred and these findings suggest that phloem contact is not necessary for host-acceptance decisions. Host acceptance behaviour of A. pisum, on susceptible and phloem-based resistant line of Medicago truncatula was monitored and found to be similar on both plant lines. The phloem-based resistance mechanism did not affect parturition behaviour indicating that reproduction is initiated prior to phloem contact. The results also imply that sign chemicals used as host recognition cues located in a peripheral tissue rather than in the phloem of host plants. Bioassays were employed to characterise the sign chemicals within host-plants of R. padi. It was found that virginoparae reproduced similarly on a neutral medium such as water or holidic diet as well as host-plant aqueous extract, which suggests that particular stimulants may be not involved in host-plant recognition by this generalist morph. On the other hand, aqueous extracts of bird cherry leaves specifically stimulated parturition in autumn gynoparae. Bioassay-guided chemical fractionation showed that at least five secondary metabolites appear to be involved in host recognition by gynoparae

    Design Opportunities in Service-Product Combined Systems

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    This paper aims to examine recent research issues related to the integration of service and product in view of industrial design. Further, it attempts to identify new opportunities for further research regarding “product-servicization” vs. “service-productization”. In the continued efforts to provide the users with fuller experiences, one major trend is the blending of products and services. Much existing research seems to either present cases or propose frameworks regarding the ‘connection’, rather than ‘integration’ between products and services. Broadly, two major approaches seem to exist in this area: 1. product-servicization, 2. service-productization. The former generally indicates adding more services to existing products, whereas the latter generally refers to making services tangible and/or visible in the form of a product. However, findings of an extensive literature search conducted for this study suggest one important deficiency in dealing with service issues around the product: the ‘integration’ between the actual product design and service elements for supporting new service-product system. That is the rationale behind this research, an attempt to investigate the possibility for the integration of product design and service factors which could be embedded in the design of product itself in new service-product system. This paper is largely based on qualitative research. New design research opportunities are identified by qualitatively analyzing relevant literature, synthesizing the information and presenting some cases to support the main argument of the research. Design-led Service-Productization is not, and should not be re-arranging deck chairs on the Titanic. Rather, it should bring practical and tangible design issues related to new service-product system. Findings suggest that this approach could provide a new model of new product development integrated with a service scheme, which is a more proactive approach than “product-servicization”. Further development of this research could lead to establishing a framework for the Design-led Service-Product Integration. Keywords: Product-servicization; Industrial design; Service; Product; Integration</p

    Variation in leaf functional traits of the Korean maple (Acer pseudosieboldianum) along an elevational gradient in a montane forest in Southern Korea

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    Plant functional traits have been shown to be useful to understand how and why ecosystems and their components vary across environmental heterogeneity or gradients. This study investigated how plant functional (leaf) traits vary according to an elevation-associated environmental gradient. Environmental gradients (mean annual temperature and precipitation) were quantified, and leaf traits (leaf area, specific leaf area, leaf nitrogen, leaf phosphorus, leaf carbon, and leaf C/N ratio) of the understory woody plant species Acer pseudosieboldianum were examined across an elevational gradient ranging from 600 to 1200 m in a Baegunsan Mountain in Gwangyang-si, Jeollanam-do, South Korea. The results showed that mean annual temperature and precipitation decreased and increased along with elevation, respectively. Leaf area of the plant species decreased slightly with increasing elevation, while specific leaf area did not differ significantly. Leaf nutrients (nitrogen, phosphorus, and carbon concentrations) were higher at high elevations, but leaf C/N ratio decreased with elevation.This research was supported by the Basic Science Research Program through the National Research Foundation of Korea (NRF) funded by the Ministry of Science, ICT and Future Planning (NRF-2015R1C1A1A01053841), (2017-0994)

    Separation of Phosvitin from Egg Yolk without Using Organic Solvents

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    The objective of this study was to develop a new method to separate phosvitin from egg yolk without using organic solvents. Phosvitin was extracted from yolk granules using 10% NaCl or 10% (NH4)2SO4 (final concentration) and then treated with heat to precipitate the lipoproteins from the extracted solution. The optimal pH for the phosvitin extraction from yolk granules was determined, and the iron-binding ability of the extracted phosvitin (final product) was tested. Adding 10% (NH4)2SO4 disrupted the granules, and the subsequent thermal treatment at 90°C for 1 h precipitated low density and high density lipoproteins, which enabled separation of phosvitin by centrifugation. The phosvitin concentration in the extract was significantly higher when the pH of the solution was adjusted to pH ≥9. The purity and recovery rate of phosvitin at the end of the separation process were approximately 78% and 56%, respectively. The separated phosvitin was confirmed to have ferrous and ferric iron binding ability. The advantages of this new method compared with the traditional methods include no organic solvents and high-priced equipment are needed for the separation. Also, this method is more environment and consumer friendly than that of the traditional methods

    bZIPDB : A database of regulatory information for human bZIP transcription factors

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    <p>Abstract</p> <p>Background</p> <p>Basic region-leucine zipper (bZIP) proteins are a class of transcription factors (TFs) that play diverse roles in eukaryotes. Malfunctions in these proteins lead to cancer and various other diseases. For detailed characterization of these TFs, further public resources are required.</p> <p>Description</p> <p>We constructed a database, designated bZIPDB, containing information on 49 human bZIP TFs, by means of automated literature collection and manual curation. bZIPDB aims to provide public data required for deciphering the gene regulatory network of the human bZIP family, e.g., evaluation or reference information for the identification of regulatory modules. The resources provided by bZIPDB include (1) protein interaction data including direct binding, phosphorylation and functional associations between bZIP TFs and other cellular proteins, along with other types of interactions, (2) bZIP TF-target gene relationships, (3) the cellular network of bZIP TFs in particular cell lines, and (4) gene information and ontology. In the current version of the database, 721 protein interactions and 560 TF-target gene relationships are recorded. bZIPDB is annually updated for the newly discovered information.</p> <p>Conclusion</p> <p>bZIPDB is a repository of detailed regulatory information for human bZIP TFs that is collected and processed from the literature, designed to facilitate analysis of this protein family. bZIPDB is available for public use at <url>http://biosoft.kaist.ac.kr/bzipdb</url>.</p

    Four Cases of a Cerebral Air Embolism Complicating a Percutaneous Transthoracic Needle Biopsy

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    A percutaneous transthoracic needle biopsy is a common procedure in the practice of pulmonology. An air embolism is a rare but potentially fatal complication of a percutaneous transthoracic needle biopsy. We report four cases of a cerebral air embolism that developed after a percutaneous transthoracic needle biopsy. Early diagnosis and the rapid application of hyperbaric oxygen therapy is the mainstay of therapy for an embolism. Prevention is the best course and it is essential that possible risk factors be avoided

    One-dimensional manganese-cobalt oxide nanofibres as bi-functional cathode catalysts for rechargeable metal-air batteries

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    Rechargeable metal-air batteries are considered a promising energy storage solution owing to their high theoretical energy density. The major obstacles to realising this technology include the slow kinetics of oxygen reduction and evolution on the cathode (air electrode) upon battery discharging and charging, respectively. Here, we report non-precious metal oxide catalysts based on spinel-type manganese-cobalt oxide nanofibres fabricated by an electrospinning technique. The spinel oxide nanofibres exhibit high catalytic activity towards both oxygen reduction and evolution in an alkaline electrolyte. When incorporated as cathode catalysts in Zn-air batteries, the fibrous spinel oxides considerably reduce the discharge-charge voltage gaps (improve the round-trip efficiency) in comparison to the catalyst-free cathode. Moreover, the nanofibre catalysts remain stable over the course of repeated discharge-charge cycling; however, carbon corrosion in the catalyst/carbon composite cathode degrades the cycling performance of the batteries

    Comparison of physicochemical traits of dry-cured ham from purebred Berkshire and crossbred Landrace × Yorkshire × Duroc (LYD) pigs

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    This study was conducted to compare the physicochemical traits of dry-cured hams made from two different pig breeds: Berkshire and Landrace × Yorkshire × Duroc (LYD). Pigs were slaughtered at a live weight of approximately 110 kg and cooled at 0°C for 24 h in a chilling room. Then, the ham portion of the carcasses were cut and processed by dry-curing for physicochemical analyses. The dry-cured hams from Berkshire contain higher crude protein, fat, and ash level than those from LYD, whereas the hams from LYD had higher moisture contents than those from Berkshire(p < 0.05). The pH values of the hams from Berkshire were lower than those from LYD (p < 0.05). The hams from Berkshire had lower L* and b* values than those from LYD (p < 0.05). Palmitoleic acid (C16:1), oleic acid (C18:1), elaidic acid (C18:1t), monounsaturated fatty acids, and ratio of n-6 and n-3 fatty acids (n-6/n-3) in the ham from Berkshire were higher than LYD (p < 0.05). Free amino acids such as aspartic acid, threonine, serine, asparagine, glutamic acid, and lysine in hams from Berkshire were higher than those from LYD (p < 0.05). The microbial population had no significant difference between Berkshire and LYD dry-cured ham. The cross sections of dry cured ham showed difference from different breeds using scanning electron microscope and indicates some differences in texture. Considering the meat quality parameters of ham, hams from Berkshire could provide variety of ham for consumer who are seeking various different qualities and stories

    Development of functional gastrointestinal disorder symptoms following laparoscopic cholecystectomy: a prospective cohort study

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    BackgroundThe casual relationship between the role of cholecystectomy and functional gastrointestinal disorders (FGIDs) are a controversial clinical challenge. This study aimed to investigate: (1) the overlap of FGIDs before cholecystectomy and its long-term outcome after surgery in patients with symptomatic cholelithiasis, and (2) the incidence of new-onset FGIDs after cholecystectomy.MethodsPatients with symptomatic gallstone disease who underwent elective, laparoscopic cholecystectomy were prospectively enrolled. Healthy populations who underwent medical check-ups were selected as age- and sex-matched controls. Questionnaires regarding sociodemographic characteristics, gastrointestinal symptoms and a somatization symptom checklist (SSC) were completed at baseline and 12 months thereafter.ResultsThe prevalence of all FGID symptoms before cholecystectomy were significantly higher in the group of patients with symptomatic cholecystolithiasis compared to the control group. In cholecystectomy group, the preoperative FGID symptoms improved after surgery, except for chronic diarrhea. Compared to the controls, the new-onset FGIDs, including functional dyspepsia (14.8% vs. 6.9%; p = 0.040), functional diarrhea (6.6% vs. 0.2%; p &lt; 0.001), and chronic abdominal pain (11.9% vs. 4.4%; p = 0.024), were more common at 1 year after cholecystectomy. Somatization was independent predictors of new-onset dyspepsia and abdominal pain, while newly occurring diarrhea was not realted to somatization.ConclusionOverlap of FGIDs was common in patients with symptomatic cholelithiasis before surgery and at follow-up 1 year after cholecystectomy. Furthermore, new-onset FGIDs could be occurred after cholecystectomy. Therefore, a delicate diagnostic approaches and appropriate treatments about co-existent FGIDs should be given in patients with cholelithiasis before and after cholecystectomy