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Runcorn, United Kingdom

Carvalho L.,Institute Medicina Molecular | Heisenberg C.-P.,AM Technology
Trends in Cell Biology | Year: 2010

The yolk syncytial layer (YSL) plays crucial roles in early zebrafish development. The YSL is a transient extra-embryonic syncytial tissue that forms during early cleavage stages and persists until larval stages. During gastrulation, the YSL undergoes highly dynamic movements, which are tightly coordinated with the movements of the overlying germ layer progenitor cells, and has critical functions in cell fate specification and morphogenesis of the early germ layers. Movement coordination between the YSL and blastoderm cells is dependent on contact between these tissues, and is probably required for the patterning and morphogenetic function of the YSL. In this review, we will discuss recent advances in elucidating the molecular and cellular mechanisms underlying the YSL morphogenesis and movement coordination between the YSL and blastoderm during early development. © 2010 Elsevier Ltd. Source


Barton N.H.,AM Technology
Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society B: Biological Sciences | Year: 2010

If distinct biological species are to coexist in sympatry, they must be reproductively isolated and must exploit different limiting resources. A two-niche Levene model is analysed, in which habitat preference and survival depend on underlying additive traits. The population genetics of preference and viability are equivalent. However, there is a linear trade-off between the chances of settling in either niche, whereas viabilities may be constrained arbitrarily. With a convex trade-off, a sexual population evolves a single generalist genotype, whereas with a concave trade-off, disruptive selection favours maximal variance. A pure habitat preference evolves to global linkage equilibrium if mating occurs in a single pool, but remarkably, evolves to pairwise linkage equilibrium within niches if mating is within those niches-independent of the genetics. With a concave trade-off, the population shifts sharply between a unimodal distribution with high gene flow and a bimodal distribution with strong isolation, as the underlying genetic variance increases. However, these alternative states are only simultaneously stable for a narrow parameter range. A sharp threshold is only seen if survival in the 'wrong' niche is low; otherwise, strong isolation is impossible. Gene flow from divergent demes makes speciation much easier in parapatry than in sympatry. © 2010 The Royal Society. Source


Barton N.H.,AM Technology | Turelli M.,University of California at Davis
American Naturalist | Year: 2011

Unlike unconditionally advantageous "Fisherian" variants that tend to spread throughout a species range once introduced anywhere, "bistable" variants, such as chromosome translocations, have two alternative stable frequencies, absence and (near) fixation. Analogous to populations with Allee effects, bistable variants tend to increase locally only once they become sufficiently common, and their spread depends on their rate of increase averaged over all frequencies. Several proposed manipulations of insect populations, such as using Wolbachia or "engineered underdominance" to suppress vector-borne diseases, produce bistable rather than Fisherian dynamics. We synthesize and extend theoretical analyses concerning three features of their spatial behavior: rate of spread, conditions to initiate spread from a localized introduction, and wave stopping caused by variation in population densities or dispersal rates. Unlike Fisherian variants, bistable variants tend to spread spatially only for particular parameter combinations and initial conditions. Wave initiation requires introduction over an extended region, while subsequent spatial spread is slower than for Fisherian waves and can easily be halted by local spatial inhomogeneities. We present several new results, including robust sufficient conditions to initiate (and stop) spread, using a one-parameter cubic approximation applicable to several models. The results have both basic and applied implications. © 2011 by The University of Chicago. Source


Epithelial spreading is a common and fundamental aspect of various developmental and disease-related processes such as epithelial closure and wound healing. A key challenge for epithelial tissues undergoing spreading is to increase their surface area without disrupting epithelial integrity. Here we show that orienting cell divisions by tension constitutes an efficient mechanism by which the enveloping cell layer (EVL) releases anisotropic tension while undergoing spreading during zebrafish epiboly. The control of EVL cell-division orientation by tension involves cell elongation and requires myosin II activity to align the mitotic spindle with the main tension axis. We also found that in the absence of tension-oriented cell divisions and in the presence of increased tissue tension, EVL cells undergo ectopic fusions, suggesting that the reduction of tension anisotropy by oriented cell divisions is required to prevent EVL cells from fusing. We conclude that cell-division orientation by tension constitutes a key mechanism for limiting tension anisotropy and thus promoting tissue spreading during EVL epiboly. Source


Patent
AM Technology | Date: 2012-02-01

An apparatus for controlling video and/or audio material, the apparatus comprising: at least one sensor that generates a signal responsive to a physiological parameter in a users body; a processor, that receives the signal and determines an emotional state of the user responsive to the signal; and a controller that controls the V/A material in accordance with the emotion state of the user.

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