Madrid, Spain

The Autonomous University of Madrid is commonly known by its Spanish initials UAM or as "la Autónoma". UAM is a Spanish public university established in 1968, along with the autonomous universities of Barcelona and Bilbao during one of Spain's most ambitious educational reforms, which took place during the late 1960s and the early 1970s. Since 1971, the university's main campus has been located in Cantoblanco, a rural area in the northern outskirts of Madrid. Despite being part of the municipality of Madrid, the campus is nearer the towns of Alcobendas and Tres Cantos. Throughout its history, UAM has been one of Spain's most prominent higher education institutions, being ranked first amongst Spanish universities by the El Mundo University Supplement , by The Times Higher Education Supplement, and by the Academic Ranking of World Universities yearly published by Shanghai Jiao Tong University. For the subject "Mathematics" the university was ranked within top 51-75 universities in the world . In the "Times Higher Education 100 Under 50 University Rankings", the University achieved 49th position globally in 2012. In another similar ranking "QS Top 50 Under 50" by Quacquarelli Symonds , the Autonomous University of Madrid recently achieved 15th place in international comparison. Its Faculty of Law is the most prestigious one in Spain. It is the Spanish university that has more researchers among the most cited according to the Thomson Reuters ranking citation in 2011. Wikipedia.

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Navascues G.,Autonomous University of Madrid | Velasco E.,Autonomous University of Madrid
Physical Review E - Statistical, Nonlinear, and Soft Matter Physics | Year: 2017

We extend a recently proposed approach to determine the absolute free energy of crystalline phases [Phys. Rev. E 92, 022103 (2015)PLEEE81539-375510.1103/PhysRevE.92.022103] to systems with continuous and orientation-dependent potentials. The method is based on the Monte Carlo thermodynamic integration method, and it provides a general procedure to obtain a simple, analytical, and exact reference free energy, together with an easy and accurate thermodynamic coupling integral. The approach is free from the difficulties of the standard method based on the harmonic coupling potential. A comparative discussion of both approaches is provided. © 2017 American Physical Society.

Pedro F.G.,Autonomous University of Madrid | Westphal A.,German Electron Synchrotron
Physical Review E - Statistical, Nonlinear, and Soft Matter Physics | Year: 2017

In this paper we present an analytic method for calculating the transition probability between two random Gaussian matrices with given eigenvalue spectra in the context of Dyson Brownian motion. We show that in the Coulomb gas language, in large N limit, memory of the initial state is preserved in the form of a universal linear potential acting on the eigenvalues. We compute the likelihood of any given transition as a function of time, showing that as memory of the initial state is lost, transition probabilities converge to those of the static ensemble. © 2017 American Physical Society.

Fernandez-Balboa J.-M.,Autonomous University of Madrid | Gonzalez-Calvo G.,University of Valladolid
Sport, Education and Society | Year: 2017

The purpose of this study was to critically analyse the perspectives of physical trainers and fitness instructors in relation to their body image, professional practice, and the consumer culture. Fourteen fitness professionals (8 personal trainers, 6 fitness instructors), between 28–37 years of age, volunteered to participate in the study. The data were collected through semi-structured interviews and analysed inductively through narrative content analysis. Two main categories emerged: (a) multiple representations of body image as an instrument of professional practice and (b) strategies for keeping a lean, youthful, and professional body image while coping with the standards of the consumer society. Each had its corresponding subcategories. The results show that there exist several links between corporeal identity, body image, and the consumer culture. Some of these connections represent sources of credibility and cultural capital, whereas others have detrimental physical and psychological consequences for fitness professionals. © 2017 Informa UK Limited, trading as Taylor & Francis Group

Cilleruelo J.,Autonomous University of Madrid
Journal of Combinatorial Theory. Series A | Year: 2017

For any positive integers h≥2 and g≥1, we present a greedy algorithm that provides an infinite Bh[g] sequence (an)n≥1 with an≤2gnh+(h−1)/g. © 2017

Zaragueta M.,Cimera Estudios Aplicados S.L. Science to Business | Acebes P.,Autonomous University of Madrid
Environmental Management | Year: 2017

Increased nutrient enrichment in Mediterranean standing waters has enhanced the risk of being affected by cyanobacterial blooms. Because phosphorus abatement is shaped as a crucial strategy for controlling eutrophication, this study introduces a structural thinking, experiential learning laboratory with animation dynamic model elaborated for Cazalegas Reservoir (Spain) to assess the feasibility of implementing a set of internal and external control measures and hydromorphological adjustments to meet the goal of oligotrophication. This shallow reservoir is another case where recurrent eutrophication has led to reach annual mean total phosphorus concentrations (0.16 ± 0.08 mg total phosphorus/L) over the threshold of current water policies, triggering cyanobacterial growth up to undesirable levels in summer time (approximately 50,000 cells/mL). Modeling results showed that (i) after upgrading water treatment in the main tributary, (ii) applying a lanthanum-modified bentonite into the water column and sediment, and (iii) increasing reservoir water level, in-lake P concentrations and cyanobacterial abundance decreased in an 88% (below 0.01 mg total phosphorus/L) and 84% (below 6000 cells/mL), respectively in the most critical periods. However, the constraints of the proposed management strategies are associated with their costs of implementation and the time span for a stable trophic recovery of the reservoir. In that end, integrated management approaches are aimed to be adopted by water managers to reach adequate ecological status of freshwater bodies. © 2016 Springer Science+Business Media New York

Zotti L.A.,Autonomous University of Madrid | Perez R.,Autonomous University of Madrid
Physical Review B - Condensed Matter and Materials Physics | Year: 2017

We present a theoretical study of the electronic transport through Pt nanocontacts. We show that the analysis of the tunneling regime requires a very careful treatment of the technical details. For instance, an insufficient size of the system can cause unphysical charge oscillations to arise along the transport direction; moreover, the use of an inappropriate basis set can deviate the distance dependence of the conductance from the expected exponential trend. While the conductance decay can be either corrected by employing ghost atoms or a large-cutoff-radius basis set, the same does not apply to the corrugation, for which only the second option is recommended. Interestingly, these details were not found to have a remarkable impact in the contact regime. These findings are important for theoretical studies of distance-dependent phenomena in scanning-probe and break-junction experiments. © 2017 American Physical Society.

Garcia-Gonzalo F.R.,Autonomous University of Madrid | Reiter J.F.,University of California at San Francisco
Cold Spring Harbor Perspectives in Biology | Year: 2017

Cilia are plasma membrane protrusions that act as cellular propellers or antennae. To perform these functions, cilia must maintain a composition distinct from those of the contiguous cytosol and plasma membrane. The specialized composition of the cilium depends on the ciliary gate, the region at the ciliary base separating the cilium from the rest of the cell. The ciliary gate’s main structural features are electron dense struts connecting microtubules to the adjacent membrane. These structures include the transition fibers, which connect the distal basal body to the base of the ciliary membrane, and the Y-links, which connect the proximal axoneme and ciliary membrane within the transition zone. Both transition fibers and Y-links form early during ciliogenesis and play key roles in ciliary assembly and trafficking. Accordingly, many human ciliopathies are caused by mutations that perturb ciliary gate function. © 2017 Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory Press. All rights reserved.

Ascasibar Y.,Autonomous University of Madrid | Gavilan M.,Autonomous University of Madrid | Pinto N.,Autonomous University of Madrid | Casado J.,Autonomous University of Madrid | And 2 more authors.
Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society | Year: 2015

This work studies the relation between gas-phase oxygen abundance and stellar-to-gas fraction in nearby galaxies. We first derive the theoretical prediction, and argue that this relation is fundamental, in the sense that it must be verified regardless of the details of the gas accretion and star formation histories. Moreover, it should hold on 'local' scales, i.e. in regions of the order of 1 kpc. These predictions are then compared with a set of spectroscopic observations, including both integrated and resolved data. Although the results depend somewhat on the adopted metallicity calibration, observed galaxies are consistent with the predicted relation, imposing tight constraints on the mass-loading factor of (enriched) galactic winds. The proposed parametrization of the star fraction-metallicity relation is able to describe the observed dependence of the oxygen abundance on gas mass at fixed stellar mass. However, the 'local' mass-metallicity relation also depends on the relation between stellar and gas surface densities. © 2015 The Authors. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the Royal Astronomical Society.

Ceverino D.,Autonomous University of Madrid | Dekel A.,Hebrew University of Jerusalem | Tweed D.,Hebrew University of Jerusalem | Tweed D.,Shanghai JiaoTong University | Primack J.,University of California at Santa Cruz
Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society | Year: 2015

We address the formation of massive stellar spheroids between redshifts z = 4 and 1 using a suite of adaptive mesh refinement hydrocosmological simulations. The spheroids form as bulges, and the spheroid mass growth is partly driven by violent disc instability (VDI) and partly by mergers.Akinematic decomposition to disc and spheroid yields that themass fraction in the spheroid is between 50 and 90 per cent and is roughly constant in time, consistent with a cosmological steady state of VDI discs that are continuously fed from the cosmic web. The density profile of the spheroid is typically 'classical', with a Sérsic index n = 4.5 ± 1, independent of whether it grew by mergers or VDI and independent of the feedback strength. The disc is characterized by n = 1.5 ± 0.5, and the whole galaxy by n = 3 ± 1. The highredshift spheroids are compact due to the dissipative inflow of gas and the high universal density. The stellar surface density within the effective radius of each galaxy as it evolves remains roughly constant in time after its first growth. For galaxies of a fixed stellar mass, the surface density is higher at higher redshifts. © 2015 The Authors. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the Royal Astronomical Society.

Danovich M.,Hebrew University of Jerusalem | Dekel A.,Hebrew University of Jerusalem | Hahn O.,ETH Zurich | Ceverino D.,Autonomous University of Madrid | Primack J.,University of California at Santa Cruz
Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society | Year: 2015

We study the angular-momentum (AM) buildup in high-z massive galaxies using highresolution cosmological simulations. The AM originates in co-planar streams of cold gas and merging galaxies tracing cosmic-web filaments, and it undergoes four phases of evolution. (I) Outside the halo virial radius (Rv ~ 100 kpc), the elongated streams gain AM by tidal torques with a specific AM (sAM) ~1.7 times the dark matter (DM) spin due to the gas' higher quadrupole moment. This AM is expressed as stream impact parameters, from ~0.3Rv to counter rotation. (II) In the outer halo, while the incoming DM mixes with the existing halo of lower sAM to a spin λdm ~ 0.04, the cold streams transport the AM to the inner halo such that their spin in the halo is ~3λdm. (III) Near pericentre, the streams dissipate into an irregular rotating ring extending to ~0.3Rv and tilted relative to the inner disc. Torques exerted partly by the disc make the ring gas lose AM, spiral in, and settle into the disc within one orbit. The ring is observable with 30 per cent probability as a damped Lyman α absorber. (IV) Within the disc, < 0.1Rv, torques associated with violent disc instability drive AM out and baryons into a central bulge, while outflows remove low-spin gas, introducing certain sensitivity to feedback strength. Despite the different AM histories of gas and DM, the disc spin is comparable to the DM-halo spin. Counter rotation can strongly affect disc evolution. © 2015 The Authors. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the Royal Astronomical Society.

Lopez E.,Autonomous University of Madrid | del Bosch G.M.,Autonomous University of Madrid
Journal of High Energy Physics | Year: 2017

We construct gravitational backgrounds dual to a family of field theories parameterized by a relevant coupling. They combine a non-trivial scalar field profile with a naked singularity. The naked singularity is necessary to preserve Lorentz invariance along the boundary directions. The singularity is however excised by introducing an infrared cutoff in the geometry. The holographic dictionary associated to the infrared boundary is developed. We implement quenches between two different values of the coupling. This requires considering time dependent boundary conditions for the scalar field both at the AdS boundary and the infrared wall. © 2017, The Author(s).

Rodriguez T.R.,Autonomous University of Madrid
Journal of Physics G: Nuclear and Particle Physics | Year: 2017

The structure of the nuclei 76Ge and 76Se is studied with symmetry conserving configuration mixing methods based on the Gogny D1S interaction. These two nuclei are of key importance in the search for neutrinoless double-beta decay. The energy density functionals used here include symmetry restorations (particle number and angular momentum) and shape mixing within the generator coordinate method. The comparison with the experimental data shows a good qualitative agreement when triaxial shapes are included, revealing the important role played by this degree of freedom in these two nuclei. © 2017 IOP Publishing Ltd.

Domingo F.,Autonomous University of Madrid | Domingo F.,Institute Fisica Of Cantabria Csic Uc
Journal of High Energy Physics | Year: 2017

A popular regime in the NMSSM parameter space involves a light CP-odd Higgs A1. This scenario has consequences for e.g. light singlino Dark Matter annihilating in the A1-funnel. In order to confront the pseudoscalar to experimental limits such as flavour observables, Upsilon decays or Beam-Dump experiments, it is necessary to control the interactions of this particle with hadronic matter and derive the corresponding decays. The partonic description cannot be relied upon for masses close to mA1 ∼ 1GeV and we employ a chiral lagrangian, then extended to a spectator model for somewhat larger masses, to describe the interplay of the CP-odd Higgs with hadrons. Interestingly, a mixing can develop between A1 and neutral pseudoscalar mesons, leading to substantial hadronic decays and a coupling of A1 to the chiral anomaly. Additionally, quartic A1-meson couplings induce tri-meson decays of the Higgs pseudoscalar. We investigate these effects and propose an estimate of the Higgs widths for masses below mA1 ≲ 3 GeV. While we focus on the case of the NMSSM, our results are applicable to a large class of models. © 2017, The Author(s).

Herraez A.,Autonomous University of Madrid | Ibanez L.E.,Autonomous University of Madrid
Journal of High Energy Physics | Year: 2017

We construct models in which the SM Higgs mass scans in a landscape. This is achieved by coupling the SM to a monodromy axion field through Minkowski 3-forms. The Higgs mass scans with steps given by δmH 2 ≃ ημf, where μ and f are the axion mass and periodicity respectively, and η measures the coupling of the Higgs to the associated 3-form. The observed Higgs mass scale could then be selected on anthropic grounds. The monodromy axion may have a mass μ in a very wide range depending on the value of η, and the axion periodity f. For η ≃ 1 and f ≃ 1010 GeV , one has 10−3 eV ≲ μ ≲ 103 eV, but ultralight axions with e.g. μ ≃ 10−17 eV are also possible. In a different realization we consider landscape models coupled to the MSSM. In the context of SUSY, 4-forms appear as being part of the auxiliary fields of SUSY multiplets. The scanning in the 4-forms thus translate into a landscape of vevs for the N = 1 auxiliary fields and hence as a landscape for the soft terms. This could provide a rationale for the MSSM fine-tuning suggested by LHC data. In all these models there are 3-forms coupling to membranes which induce transitions between different vacua through bubble nucleation. The Weak Gravity Conjecture (WGC) set limits on the tension of these membranes and implies new physics thresholds well below the Planck scale. More generaly, we argue that in the case of string SUSY vacua in which the Goldstino multiplet contains a monodromy axion the WGC suggests a lower bound on the SUSY breaking scale m3/2 ≳ Ms 2/Mp. © 2017, The Author(s).

Ortega-Escobar J.,Autonomous University of Madrid | Ruiz M.A.,Autonomous University of Madrid
Journal of Experimental Biology | Year: 2017

The wolf spider Lycosa tarantula returns home by means of path integration. Previous studies demonstrated: (i) that the angular component of the outbound run is measured using a polarized-light compass associated with the anterior median eyes; (ii) changes in direction of the substratum are detected by the anterior lateral eyes (ALEs); and (iii) in relation to the linear component of the outbound run, an increase of optic flow, in either the lateral or ventral fields of view, caused spiders to search for the burrow at a point nearer to the goal. However, the role of the secondary eyes [ALEs, posterior lateral eyes (PLEs) and posterior median eyes (PMEs)] in the perception of this optic flow and the importance of them for gauging the distance walked is still unknown. In this study, lateral or ventral gratings of wavelength λ=1 cm were used, with two groups of spiders in each setup: (1) PLEs+PMEs covered and (2) ALEs covered. The largest reduction in the distance walked to return to the burrow was observed with the ventral grating/ALEs covered. These results show the importance of the previously neglected ALEs for the visual behavior of these spiders. The possibility of gathering information for locomotion from the three pairs of secondary eyes in the mushroom bodies is discussed. © 2017 Published by The Company of Biologists Ltd.

Soriano J.B.,Autonomous University of Madrid
COPD: Journal of Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease | Year: 2017

Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) is a common condition, associated with increasing age and smoking exposure. COPD is a leading cause of morbidity, mortality and health care expenditure worldwide; yet, only 10–15% of all cases are identified medically. Alpha-1-antitrypsin deficiency (AATD) is responsible for about 1% of COPD cases but is also largely under-recognised, leading to diagnostic delay and missed treatment opportunities in patients who remain undetected. New evidence has recently highlighted the extent of overlap between COPD and bronchiectasis and the implications of comorbidity on clinical course and mortality. COPD with comorbid bronchiectasis deserves to be given research priority. This article overviews the epidemiology of COPD and examines the implications of overlap between COPD and AATD and between COPD and bronchiectasis. © 2017 The Author(s). Published with license by Taylor & Francis © 2017, © Joan B. Soriano.

Rozano M.,Autonomous University of Madrid
Handbook of Research on Strategic Retailing of Private Label Products in a Recovering Economy | Year: 2016

Over the past three decades, marketing has increased its interest in studying the role of generic productsin the pharmaceutical sector, one that has only recently incorporated the concept of "generic" products,compared to others such as the mass market. Since the emergence of generic products as one ofnational brands' main competitors, these have shown significant growth in both their market share, aswell as in new product categories. Initially, the concept of generic products was limited to categoriesof packaged foods and later extended to categories such as medicine. Pharmaceutical market presentsan opportunity to analyze the expansion of the "generic" concept, in a strongly regulated framework.In Europe, different policies have resulted in a varying development of generic market shares. Today,the sustainability of health system is a matter of increasing concern to European governments. Genericdrugs offer an opportunity to contain pharmaceutical expenditures, since generic price are lower thantheir original brand equivalent. Developing this market is the main objective. © 2016 by IGI Global. All rights reserved.

Santin D.,Complutense University of Madrid | Sicilia G.,Autonomous University of Madrid
Expert Systems with Applications | Year: 2017

Although the presence of the endogeneity is frequently observed in economic production processes, it tends to be overlooked when practitioners apply data envelopment analysis (DEA). In this paper we deal with this issue in two ways. First, we provide a simple statistical heuristic procedure that enables practitioners to identify the presence of endogeneity in an empirical application. Second, we propose the use of an instrumental input DEA (II-DEA) as a potential tool to address this problem and thus improve DEA estimations. A Monte Carlo experiment confirms that the proposed II-DEA approach outperforms standard DEA in finite samples under the presence of high positive endogeneity. To illustrate our theoretical findings, we perform an empirical application on the education sector. © 2016 Elsevier Ltd

Esparza-Molto P.B.,Autonomous University of Madrid | Nuevo-Tapioles C.,Autonomous University of Madrid | Cuezva J.M.,Autonomous University of Madrid
Cellular and Molecular Life Sciences | Year: 2017

The mitochondrial H+-ATP synthase is a primary hub of cellular homeostasis by providing the energy required to sustain cellular activity and regulating the production of signaling molecules that reprogram nuclear activity needed for adaption to changing cues. Herein, we summarize findings regarding the regulation of the activity of the H+-ATP synthase by its physiological inhibitor, the ATPase inhibitory factor 1 (IF1) and their functional role in cellular homeostasis. First, we outline the structure and the main molecular mechanisms that regulate the activity of the enzyme. Next, we describe the molecular biology of IF1 and summarize the regulation of IF1 expression and activity as an inhibitor of the H+-ATP synthase emphasizing the role of IF1 as a main driver of energy rewiring and cellular signaling in cancer. Findings in transgenic mice in vivo indicate that the overexpression of IF1 is sufficient to reprogram energy metabolism to an enhanced glycolysis and activate reactive oxygen species (ROS)-dependent signaling pathways that promote cell survival. These findings are placed in the context of mitohormesis, a program in which a mild mitochondrial stress triggers adaptive cytoprotective mechanisms that improve lifespan. In this regard, we emphasize the role played by the H+-ATP synthase in modulating signaling pathways that activate the mitohormetic response, namely ATP, ROS and target of rapamycin (TOR). Overall, we aim to highlight the relevant role of the H+-ATP synthase and of IF1 in cellular physiology and the need of additional studies to decipher their contributions to aging and age-related diseases. © 2017 The Author(s)

Valbuena A.,Autonomous University of Madrid | Mateu M.G.,Autonomous University of Madrid
Biophysical Journal | Year: 2017

Self-assembling protein layers provide a “bottom-up” approach for precisely organizing functional elements at the nanoscale over a large solid surface area. The design of protein sheets with architecture and physical properties suitable for nanotechnological applications may be greatly facilitated by a thorough understanding of the principles that underlie their self-assembly and disassembly. In a previous study, the hexagonal lattice formed by the capsid protein (CA) of human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) was self-assembled as a monomolecular layer directly onto a solid substrate, and its mechanical properties and dynamics at equilibrium were analyzed by atomic force microscopy. Here, we use atomic force microscopy to analyze the kinetics of self-assembly of the planar CA lattice on a substrate and of its disassembly, either spontaneous or induced by materials fatigue. Both self-assembly and disassembly of the CA layer are cooperative reactions that proceed until a phase equilibrium is reached. Self-assembly requires a critical protein concentration and is initiated by formation of nucleation points on the substrate, followed by lattice growth and eventual merging of CA patches into a continuous monolayer. Disassembly of the CA layer showed hysteresis and appears to proceed only after large enough defects (nucleation points) are formed in the lattice, whose number is largely increased by inducing materials fatigue that depends on mechanical load and its frequency. Implications of the kinetic results obtained for a better understanding of self-assembly and disassembly of the HIV capsid and protein-based two-dimensional nanomaterials and the design of anti-HIV drugs targeting (dis)assembly and biocompatible nanocoatings are discussed. © 2017 Biophysical Society

Guimon J.,Autonomous University of Madrid
International Journal of Technological Learning, Innovation and Development | Year: 2017

National innovation systems in emerging countries often suffer from weak university-industry links and inefficient technology commercialisation processes. While the existing literature is rich in analysing this kind of systemic failures from a broad theoretical perspective, there is a shortage of applied studies that discuss how these challenges unfold in practice and the policy options to address them. The aim of this paper is to contribute to this research agenda through a case study of the Technology Commercialization Project in Kazakhstan. This project was launched in 2010 by Kazakhstan's Ministry of Education and Science in cooperation with the World Bank. It comprised different measures to strengthen the national science base and to promote technology commercialisation. It was designed to address existing inefficiencies that hamper innovation in Kazakhstan, such as insufficient science-industry links; lack of critical mass in scientific research; inefficient funding programs that fail to reward excellence; and poor institutions and infrastructures. Following the end of the Technology Commercialization Project in 2015, the aim of this article is to provide a critical assessment of its outcomes and future challenges. Based on the recent experience of Kazakhstan, broader policy implications relevant to other transition and emerging countries are drawn. Copyright © 2017 Inderscience Enterprises Ltd.

Velasco J.G.,Autonomous University of Madrid
New Journal of Chemistry | Year: 2017

A comparative study of the ultraviolet-visible spectrum and of the electrochemical behavior of the [Ru(bpz)3 2+] ion has been made. An examination of the recorded UV spectrum allows us to determine the wavelengths at which different electronic transitions take place. The energies at which these transitions take place correspond to the energy differences between the molecular orbitals in the ruthenium complex which are involved in the electronic transitions observed. With these data, and the wavelength of the maximum of the emission spectrum also recorded, drawing of the Jablonski diagram for the [Ru(bpz)3 2+] ion is possible. By comparing the energy differences between the molecular levels identified in the Jablonski diagram with the differences in potential values at which the various redox processes recorded in the cyclic voltammogram take place, it is possible to identify the electronic levels in the ruthenium complex which are involved in the redox reactions responsible for the cyclic voltammetric waves registered in the electrochemical study. The close correlation found between the spectroscopic and the electrochemical results confirms the first definition given for the cyclic voltammetry as electrochemical spectroscopy and allows the undoubted identification of the molecular orbitals that are involved in the different charge transfer reactions with the electrode. © The Royal Society of Chemistry and the Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique.

Costales F.G.,Autonomous University of Madrid | Carro R.M.,Autonomous University of Madrid
International Conference on Intelligent User Interfaces, Proceedings IUI | Year: 2017

In the context of Medicine, technology facilitates the design and development of prostheses that make it possible for patients to recover specific movements. Myoelectric prostheses connect to the patient nerves directly and allow limb movements via electric impulses generated by the nervous system. However, the use of these prostheses requires intensive training, which can be hard and tiring, especially for children. The use of games can make training much more enjoyable. In this paper, we describe SilverTouch, an application to help children to train the use of myoelectric prostheses by means of three different types of multi-touch games. The games are dynamically generated for each user according to his needs and performance at runtime. We have designed them following the advice of experts in Medicine, Physiotherapy, Therapy and Education. The results are promising: the final users agreed that SilverTouch is a good tool for training the use of prostheses, while the experts confirmed its potential to be widely utilized for that purpose. Copyright is held by the owner/author(s).

Lindberg S.,Autonomous University of Madrid
Archive for Rational Mechanics and Analysis | Year: 2017

We make progress on a problem of Coifman et al. (J Math Pures Appl (9) 72(3): 247–286, 1993) by showing that the Jacobian operator J does not map (Formula presented.) onto the Hardy space (Formula presented.) for any (Formula presented.). The related question about the surjectivity of (Formula presented.) is still open. The second main result and its variants reduce the proof of (Formula presented.) regularity of a large class of compensated compactness quantities to an integration by parts or easy arithmetic, and applications are presented. Furthermore, we exhibit a class of nonlinear partial differential operators in which weak sequential continuity is a strictly stronger condition than (Formula presented.) regularity, shedding light on another question of Coifman, Lions, Meyer and Semmes. © 2017 Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg

Bernal J.,Autonomous University of Madrid
Journal of Endocrinology | Year: 2017

The physiological and developmental effects of thyroid hormones are mainly due to the control of gene expression after interaction of T3 with the nuclear receptors. To understand the role of thyroid hormones on cerebral cortex development, knowledge of the genes regulated by T3 during specific stages of development is required. In our laboratory, we previously identified genes regulated by T3 in primary cerebrocortical cells in culture. By comparing these data with transcriptomics of purified cell types from the developing cortex, the cellular targets of T3 can be identified. In addition, many of the genes regulated transcriptionally by T3 have defined roles in cortex development, from which the role of T3 can be derived. This review analyzes the specific roles of T3-regulated genes in the different stages of cortex development within the physiological frame of the developmental changes of thyroid hormones and receptor concentrations in the human cerebral cortex during fetal development. These data indicate an increase in the sensitivity to T3 during the second trimester of fetal development. The main cellular targets of T3 appear to be the Cajal-Retzius and the subplate neurons. On the other hand, T3 regulates transcriptionally genes encoding extracellular matrix proteins, involved in cell migration and the control of diverse signaling pathways. © 2017 Society for Endocrinology.

de Mendoza C.,Autonomous University of Madrid
AIDS | Year: 2017

: HIV type 2 (HIV-2) is a neglected virus despite estimates of 1-2 million people infected worldwide. HIV-2 is less efficiently transmitted than HIV-1 by sex and from mother-to-child. Although AIDS may develop in HIV-2 carriers, it takes longer than in HIV-1-infected patients. In contrast with HIV-1 infection, there is no global pandemic caused by HIV-2, remaining the virus largely confined to West Africa. In a less extent and due to socioeconomic ties and wars, HIV-2 is prevalent in Portugal and its former colonies in Brazil, India, Mozambique and Angola. Globally, HIV-2 infections are steadily declining over time.A total of 338 cases of HIV-2 infection had been reported at the Spanish HIV-2 registry until December 2016, of whom 63% were male. Overall 72% were Sub-Saharan Africans whereas 16% were native Spaniards. Dual HIV-1 and HIV-2 coinfection was found in 9% of patients. Heterosexual contact was the most likely route of HIV-2 acquisition in more than 90% of cases. Roughly one third presented with CD4 counts <200?cells/μL and/or AIDS clinical events. Plasma HIV-2 RNA was undetectable at baseline in 40% of patients. To date, one third of HIV-2 carriers have received antiretroviral therapy, using integrase inhibitors 32 individuals.New diagnoses of HIV-2 in Spain have remained stable since 2010 with an average of 15 cases yearly. Illegal immigration from Northwestern African borders accounts for over 75% of new HIV-2 diagnoses. Given the relatively large community of West Africans already living in Spain and the continuous flux of immigration from endemic regions, HIV-2 infection either alone or as coinfection with HIV-1 should be excluded once in all HIV-seroreactive persons, especially when showing atypical HIV serological profiles, immunovirological disconnect (CD4 count loss despite undetectable HIV-1 viremia) and/or high epidemiological risks (birth in or sex partners from endemic regions). Copyright © 2017 Wolters Kluwer Health, Inc.

Soriano V.,Autonomous University of Madrid
AIDS reviews | Year: 2017

In Brazil, a nurse recently became infected with HIV-1 despite beginning antiretroviral therapy within one hour following accidental needle stick injury while puncturing the forearm of an HIV-infected patient with detectable plasma viremia. Thereafter, the patient's virus was found to harbor multiple drug resistance mutations.

News Article | April 21, 2017

A necessary part of any animal's sense of direction is a positioning system to detect the relationship between where it is and where it wants to go—this is known as odometry. Tarantula wolf spiders have four sets of eyes, and a study from the Autonomous University of Madrid shows that they use their posterior lateral eyes and anterior lateral eyes to establish the distance they have traveled. The tarantula wolf spider species Lycosa tarantula ambushes its prey and lives in burrows around 20 cm deep topped by a structure—a kind of turret that the tarantula build from twigs, leaves and small stones, fastened with spider's silk. From the turret, the tarantula surprises its prey and runs to pursue it, subsequently returning to the burrow from distances between 30 and 40 cm. L. tarantula uses path integration to return to its burrow. With this mechanism, it does not follow the same path back to its burrow; instead, it moves as though it had followed the sides of a right-angle triangle, returning along the hypotenuse. In 1999, a research team from the Autonomous University of Madrid discovered that these animals used polarized light from the sky to determine their position with respect to the nest. In the new research, scientists wanted to extend this knowledge, and have analyzed the role of each pair of the tarantula wolf spider's eyes in the process of distance measurement, or odometry. "To calculate the distance it has traveled, the animal needs an odometer that registers the route, its location with respect to the finish point, which would be the burrow, and a 'compass' to track the direction of travel," said Joaquin Ortega Escobar, lead author of a paper published in the Journal of Experimental Biology on the function of each eye in these processes. The tarantula wolf spider's median eyes measure the angle of polarised light, comprising its 'compass'; it detects direction using its anterior lateral eyes. Through this research, the scientists have learned that it is principally the anterior lateral eyes—which until now had not been analyzed—and to a lesser extent, the posterior lateral eyes, that tarantula wolf spiders use to measure the distance to their nest. "These eyes look at the substrate. They point downwards, so it seems logical to think they would have a role in measuring the distance traveled. In the experiment, we covered these eyes with a water-soluble paint and observed that instead of traveling 30 cm from the nest, which is the distance we initially set, they stopped 8.5 centimetres before they reached their objective," said the researcher. With those eyes covered and the other six active, they have problems determining distance. "When we uncovered them, they could return to their nests perfectly. They need the lateral anterior eyes to measure the distance," he said. In previous work with the lateral eyes of other animals, such as desert ants (Cataglyphis fortis), the researchers observed that animals moving across a grid of black and white bands, like those used in the tarantula wolf spider study, with the ventral region of their compound eyes (the part that perceives the grid) covered did not present a significant difference in the return trip to the nest compared to when the eyes were uncovered. "The situations of these two animals are analogous. In the case of the spider, it is the anterior lateral eye that perceives the ventral field of view, while in the ant it is the ventral region of the compound eye. Spiders have simple eyes like our own, rather than compound eyes," Ortega Escobar said. Through this research, the scientists also observed that the tarantula wolf spiders do not move their front two legs when their eyes are covered. "This movement had been observed in another species, C. salei, under complete darkness. The movement was due to the absence of light, not because its eyes were covered, which would not necessarily be the same. We do not know why it does this when the posterior median eyes or anterior lateral eyes are covered and not the posterior lateral eyes," said Ortega Escobar.

News Article | April 20, 2017

The tarantula species Lycosa tarantula ambushes its prey and lives in burrows around 20 cm deep topped by a structure, a kind of turret which the tarantula build from twigs, leaves and small stones, fastened with the spider's silk. From the turret, the tarantula surprises its prey and runs to pursue it, subsequently returning to the burrow from distances between 30 and 40 cm. L. tarantula uses path integration to return to its burrow. With this mechanism, it does not follow the same path back to its burrow; instead, it moves as though it had followed the sides of a right-angle triangle, returning along the hypotenuse. In 1999, a research team from the Autonomous University of Madrid discovered that these animals used polarised light from the sky to know their position with respect to their nest. In the new research, the scientists wanted to go beyond this, and have analysed the role of each pair of the tarantula's eyes (they have four pairs in total) in the process of distance measurement, or odometry. "To calculate the distance it has travelled, the animal needs an odometer that registers the route, its location with respect to the finish point, which would be the burrow, and a 'compass' to track the direction of travel," SINC was told by Joaquin Ortega Escobar, lead author of a paper published in the Journal of Experimental Biology on the function of each eye in these processes. The 'compass' would correspond to polarised light, which the median eyes use to measure the angle; direction is detected by the anterior lateral eyes. Through this research, the scientists have learned that it is principally the anterior lateral eyes (which until now had not been analysed), and to a lesser extent the posterior lateral eyes, that help tarantulas measures the distance to their nest. "These eyes look at the substrate. Seeing as they point downwards, it seems logical to think they would have a role in measuring the distance travelled. In the experiment, we covered these eyes with a water-soluble paint and observed that instead of travelling 30 cm from the nest, which is the distance we initially set, they stopped 8.5 centimetres before they reached their objective," explains the researcher. This explains that with those eyes covered and the other six active, they have problems determining distance. "When we uncovered them, they could return to their nests perfectly. They need the lateral anterior eyes to measure the distance," he adds. In previous work with the lateral eyes of other animals, such as desert ants (Cataglyphis fortis), the researchers observed that animals moving across a grid of black and white bands, like those used in the tarantula study, with the ventral region of their compound eyes (the part that perceives the grid) covered did not present a significant difference in the return trip to the nest compared to when the eyes were uncovered. "The situations of these two animals are analogous. In the case of the spider, it is the anterior lateral eye that perceives the ventral field of view, while in the ant it is the ventral region of the compound eye. Spiders have simple eyes like our own, rather than compound eyes," Ortega Escobar explains. Through this research, the scientists also observed that the tarantulas do not move their front two legs when their eyes are covered. "This movement had been observed in another species, C. salei, under complete darkness. The movement was due to the absence of light, not because its eyes were covered, which would not necessarily be the same. We do not know why it does this when the posterior median eyes or anterior lateral eyes are covered and not the posterior lateral eyes," concludes Ortega Escobar.

News Article | April 21, 2017

The tarantula wolf spider species Lycosa tarantula ambushes its prey and lives in burrows around 20 cm deep topped by a structure, a kind of turret that the tarantula build from twigs, leaves and small stones, fastened with spider's silk. From the turret, the tarantula surprises its prey and runs to pursue it, subsequently returning to the burrow from distances between 30 and 40 cm. L. tarantula uses path integration to return to its burrow. With this mechanism, it does not follow the same path back to its burrow; instead, it moves as though it had followed the sides of a right-angle triangle, returning along the hypotenuse. In 1999, a research team from the Autonomous University of Madrid discovered that these animals used polarised light from the sky to determine their position with respect to the nest. In the new research, the scientists wanted to extend this knowledge, and have analysed the role of each pair of the tarantula wolf spider's eyes in the process of distance measurement, or odometry. "To calculate the distance it has traveled, the animal needs an odometer that registers the route, its location with respect to the finish point, which would be the burrow, and a 'compass' to track the direction of travel," said Joaquin Ortega Escobar, lead author of a paper published in the Journal of Experimental Biology on the function of each eye in these processes. The tarantula wolf spider's median eyes measure the angle of polarised light, comprising its 'compass'; it detects direction using its anterior lateral eyes. Through this research, the scientists have learned that it is principally the anterior lateral eyes—which until now had not been analysed—and to a lesser extent, the posterior lateral eyes, that tarantula wolf spiders use to measure the distance to their nest. "These eyes look at the substrate. They point downwards, so it seems logical to think they would have a role in measuring the distance travelled. In the experiment, we covered these eyes with a water-soluble paint and observed that instead of travelling 30 cm from the nest, which is the distance we initially set, they stopped 8.5 centimetres before they reached their objective," said the researcher. With those eyes covered and the other six active, they have problems determining distance. "When we uncovered them, they could return to their nests perfectly. They need the lateral anterior eyes to measure the distance," he said. In previous work with the lateral eyes of other animals, such as desert ants (Cataglyphis fortis), the researchers observed that animals moving across a grid of black and white bands, like those used in the tarantula wolf spider study, with the ventral region of their compound eyes (the part that perceives the grid) covered did not present a significant difference in the return trip to the nest compared to when the eyes were uncovered. "The situations of these two animals are analogous. In the case of the spider, it is the anterior lateral eye that perceives the ventral field of view, while in the ant it is the ventral region of the compound eye. Spiders have simple eyes like our own, rather than compound eyes," Ortega Escobar said. Through this research, the scientists also observed that the tarantula wolf spiders do not move their front two legs when their eyes are covered. "This movement had been observed in another species, C. salei, under complete darkness. The movement was due to the absence of light, not because its eyes were covered, which would not necessarily be the same. We do not know why it does this when the posterior median eyes or anterior lateral eyes are covered and not the posterior lateral eyes," said Ortega Escobar.

News Article | April 20, 2017

The tarantula species Lycosa tarantula ambushes its prey and lives in burrows around 20 cm deep topped by a structure, a kind of turret which the tarantula build from twigs, leaves and small stones, fastened with the spider's silk. From the turret, the tarantula surprises its prey and runs to pursue it, subsequently returning to the burrow from distances between 30 and 40 cm. L. tarantula uses path integration to return to its burrow. With this mechanism, it does not follow the same path back to its burrow; instead, it moves as though it had followed the sides of a right-angle triangle, returning along the hypotenuse. In 1999, a research team from the Autonomous University of Madrid discovered that these animals used polarised light from the sky to know their position with respect to their nest. In the new research, the scientists wanted to go beyond this, and have analysed the role of each pair of the tarantula's eyes (they have four pairs in total) in the process of distance measurement, or odometry. "To calculate the distance it has travelled, the animal needs an odometer that registers the route, its location with respect to the finish point, which would be the burrow, and a 'compass' to track the direction of travel," SINC was told by Joaquin Ortega Escobar, lead author of a paper published in the Journal of Experimental Biology on the function of each eye in these processes. The 'compass' would correspond to polarised light, which the median eyes use to measure the angle; direction is detected by the anterior lateral eyes. Through this research, the scientists have learned that it is principally the anterior lateral eyes (which until now had not been analysed), and to a lesser extent the posterior lateral eyes, that help tarantulas measures the distance to their nest. "These eyes look at the substrate. Seeing as they point downwards, it seems logical to think they would have a role in measuring the distance travelled. In the experiment, we covered these eyes with a water-soluble paint and observed that instead of travelling 30 cm from the nest, which is the distance we initially set, they stopped 8.5 centimetres before they reached their objective," explains the researcher. This explains that with those eyes covered and the other six active, they have problems determining distance. "When we uncovered them, they could return to their nests perfectly. They need the lateral anterior eyes to measure the distance," he adds. In previous work with the lateral eyes of other animals, such as desert ants (Cataglyphis fortis), the researchers observed that animals moving across a grid of black and white bands, like those used in the tarantula study, with the ventral region of their compound eyes (the part that perceives the grid) covered did not present a significant difference in the return trip to the nest compared to when the eyes were uncovered. "The situations of these two animals are analogous. In the case of the spider, it is the anterior lateral eye that perceives the ventral field of view, while in the ant it is the ventral region of the compound eye. Spiders have simple eyes like our own, rather than compound eyes," Ortega Escobar explains. Through this research, the scientists also observed that the tarantulas do not move their front two legs when their eyes are covered. "This movement had been observed in another species, C. salei, under complete darkness. The movement was due to the absence of light, not because its eyes were covered, which would not necessarily be the same. We do not know why it does this when the posterior median eyes or anterior lateral eyes are covered and not the posterior lateral eyes," concludes Ortega Escobar. Joaquin Ortega-Escobar y Miguel A. Ruiz. "Role of the different eyes in the visual odometry in the wolf spider Lycosa tarantula (Araneae, Lycosidae)". Journal of Experimental Biology (2017) 220, 259-265 doi:10.1242/jeb.145763

News Article | May 3, 2017

(Reuters) - Europe’s top tech hubs tend to radiate from massive capital cities like London, Berlin and Paris. But the heart of European innovation isn’t a major metropolis –it’s a small city in the Dutch-speaking region of Flanders. That’s the conclusion of Reuters’ second annual ranking of Europe’s Most Innovative Universities, a list that identifies and ranks the educational institutions doing the most to advance science, invent new technologies, and help drive the global economy. The most innovative university in Europe, for the second year running, is Belgium’s KU Leuven. This nearly 600-year-old institution was founded by Pope Martin V, but today it’s better known for technology than theology: KU Leuven maintains one of the largest independent research and development organizations on the planet. In fiscal 2015, the university’s research spending exceeded €454 million, and its patent portfolio currently includes 586 active families, each one representing an invention protected in multiple countries. How does a relatively small Catholic university out-innovate bigger, better-known institutions across Europe? KU Leuven earned its first-place rank, in part, by producing a high volume of influential inventions. Its researchers submit more patents than most other universities on the continent, and outside researchers frequently cite KU Leuven inventions in their own patent applications. Those are key criteria in Reuters ranking of Europe’s Most Innovative Universities, which was compiled in partnership with Clarivate Analytics, and is based on proprietary data and analysis of indicators including patent filings and research paper citations. The second most innovative university in Europe is Imperial College London, an institution whose researchers have been responsible for the discovery of penicillin, the development of holography and the invention of fiber optics. The third-place University of Cambridge has been associated with 91 Nobel Laureates during its 800-year history. And the fourth-place Technical University of Munich has spun off more than 800 companies since 1990, including a variety of high-tech startups in industries including renewable energy, semiconductors and nanotechnology. Overall, the same countries that dominate European business and politics dominate the ranking of Europe's Most Innovative Universities. German universities account for 23 of the 100 institutions on the list, more than any other country, and the United Kingdom comes in second, tied with France, each with 17 institutions. But those three countries are also among the most populous and richest countries on the continent. Control for those factors, and it turns out that countries with much smaller populations and modest economies often outperform big ones. The Republic of Ireland has only three schools on the entire list, but with a population of less than 5 million people, it can boast more top 100 innovative universities per capita than any other country in Europe. On the same per capita basis, the second most innovative country on the list is Denmark, followed by Belgium, Switzerland and the Netherlands. Germany, the United Kingdom and France rank in the middle of the pack, an indication that they may be underperforming compared with their smaller neighbors: On a per capita basis, none of those countries has half as many top 100 universities than Ireland. And the same trends hold true if you look at national economies. According to the International Monetary Fund, in 2016 Germany’s gross domestic product exceeded $3.49 trillion –11 times larger than Ireland at $307 billion, yet Germany has only 7 times as many top 100 innovative universities. Some countries underperform even more drastically. Russia is Europe’s most populous country and has the region’s fifth largest economy, yet none of its universities count among the top 100. Other notable absences include any universities from Ukraine or Romania–a fact that reveals another divide between Western and Eastern Europe. To compile the ranking of Europe’s most innovative universities, Clarivate Analytics (formerly the Intellectual Property & Science business of Thomson Reuters) began by identifying more than 600 global organizations that published the most articles in academic journals, including educational institutions, nonprofit charities, and government-funded institutions. That list was reduced to institutions that filed at least 50 patents with the World Intellectual Property Organization in the period between 2010 and 2015. Then they evaluated each candidate on 10 different metrics, focusing on academic papers (which indicate basic research) and patent filings (which point to an institution's ability to apply research and commercialize its discoveries). Finally, they trimmed the list so that it only included European universities, and then ranked them based on their performance. This is the second consecutive year that Clarivate and Reuters have collaborated to rank Europe’s Most Innovative Universities, and three universities that ranked in the top 100 in 2016 fell off the list entirely: the Netherland’s Eindhoven University of Technology, Germany’s University of Kiel, and the UK’s Queens University Belfast. All three universities filed fewer than 50 patents during the period examined for the ranking, and thus were eliminated from consideration. They’ve been replaced by three new entrants to the top 100: the University of Glasgow (#54), the University of Nice Sophia Antipolis (#94), and the Autonomous University of Madrid (#100). The returning universities that made the biggest moves on the list were the Netherland’s Leiden University (up 21 spots to #17) and Germany’s Technical University of Berlin (up 21 spots to #41). Belgium’s Université Libre of Brussels (down 17 to #38) and the UK’s University of Leeds (down 17 to #73) made the biggest moves in the opposite direction. Generally, though, the list remained largely stable: Nine of the top ten schools of 2016 remained in the top 10 for 2017, and 17 of the top 20. This stability is understandable because something as large as university paper output and patent performance is unlikely to change quickly. Of course, the relative ranking of any university does not provide a complete picture of whether its researchers are doing important, innovative work. Since the ranking measures innovation on an institutional level, it may overlook particularly innovative departments or programs: a university might rank low for overall innovation but still operate one of the world's most innovative computer science laboratories, for instance. And it's important to remember that whether a university ranks at the top or the bottom of the list, it's still within the top 100 on the continent: All of these universities produce original research, create useful technology and stimulate the global economy.

Revers F.,French National Institute for Agricultural Research | Revers F.,University of Bordeaux 1 | Garcia J.A.,Autonomous University of Madrid
Advances in Virus Research | Year: 2015

Potyvirus is the largest genus of plant viruses causing significant losses in a wide range of crops. Potyviruses are aphid transmitted in a nonpersistent manner and some of them are also seed transmitted. As important pathogens, potyviruses are much more studied than other plant viruses belonging to other genera and their study covers many aspects of plant virology, such as functional characterization of viral proteins, molecular interaction with hosts and vectors, structure, taxonomy, evolution, epidemiology, and diagnosis. Biotechnological applications of potyviruses are also being explored. During this last decade, substantial advances have been made in the understanding of the molecular biology of these viruses and the functions of their various proteins. After a general presentation on the family Potyviridae and the potyviral proteins, we present an update of the knowledge on potyvirus multiplication, movement, and transmission and on potyvirus/plant compatible interactions including pathogenicity and symptom determinants. We end the review providing information on biotechnological applications of potyviruses. © 2015 Elsevier Inc.

Sorel M.,French National Institute for Agricultural Research | Garcia J.A.,Autonomous University of Madrid | German-Retana S.,French National Institute for Agricultural Research
Molecular Plant-Microbe Interactions | Year: 2014

A unique feature shared by all plant viruses of the Potyviridae family is the induction of characteristic pinwheelshaped inclusion bodies in the cytoplasm of infected cells. These cylindrical inclusions are composed of the viralencoded cylindrical inclusion helicase (CI protein). Its helicase activity was characterized and its involvement in replication demonstrated through different reverse genetics approaches. In addition to replication, the CI protein is also involved in cell-to-cell and long-distance movements, possibly through interactions with the recently discovered viral P3N-PIPO protein. Studies over the past two decades demonstrate that the CI protein is present in several cellular compartments interacting with viral and plant protein partners likely involved in its various roles in different steps of viral infection. Furthermore, the CI protein acts as an avirulence factor in gene-for-gene interactions with dominant-resistance host genes and as a recessive-resistance overcoming factor. Although a significant amount of data concerning the potential functions and subcellular localization of this protein has been published, no synthetic review is available on this important multifunctional protein. In this review, we compile and integrate all information relevant to the current understanding of this viral protein structure and function and present a mode of action for CI, combining replication and movement. © 2014 The American Phytopathological Society.

Garcia J.A.,Autonomous University of Madrid | Glasa M.,Slovak Academy of Sciences | Cambra M.,Instituto Valenciano Of Investigaciones Agrarias Ivia | Candresse T.,French National Institute for Agricultural Research
Molecular Plant Pathology | Year: 2014

Summary: Taxonomic relationships: Plum pox virus (PPV) is a member of the genus Potyvirus in the family Potyviridae. PPV diversity is structured into at least eight monophyletic strains. Geographical distribution: First discovered in Bulgaria, PPV is nowadays present in most of continental Europe (with an endemic status in many central and southern European countries) and has progressively spread to many countries on other continents. Genomic structure: Typical of potyviruses, the PPV genome is a positive-sense single-stranded RNA (ssRNA), with a protein linked to its 5' end and a 3'-terminal poly A tail. It is encapsidated by a single type of capsid protein (CP) in flexuous rod particles and is translated into a large polyprotein which is proteolytically processed in at least 10 final products: P1, HCPro, P3, 6K1, CI, 6K2, VPg, NIapro, NIb and CP. In addition, P3N-PIPO is predicted to be produced by a translational frameshift. Pathogenicity features: PPV causes sharka, the most damaging viral disease of stone fruit trees. It also infects wild and ornamental Prunus trees and has a large experimental host range in herbaceous species. PPV spreads over long distances by uncontrolled movement of plant material, and many species of aphid transmit the virus locally in a nonpersistent manner. Sources of resistance: A few natural sources of resistance to PPV have been found so far in Prunus species, which are being used in classical breeding programmes. Different genetic engineering approaches are being used to generate resistance to PPV, and a transgenic plum, 'HoneySweet', transformed with the viral CP gene, has demonstrated high resistance to PPV in field tests in several countries and has obtained regulatory approval in the USA. © 2013 BSPP AND JOHN WILEY & SONS LTD.

Rabinovich M.I.,University of California at San Diego | Simmons A.N.,University of California at San Diego | Varona P.,Autonomous University of Madrid
Trends in Cognitive Sciences | Year: 2015

The bridge between brain structures as computational devices and the content of mental processes hinges on the solution of several problems: (i) inference of the cognitive brain networks from neurophysiological and imaging data; (ii) inference of cognitive mind networks - interactions between mental processes such as attention and working memory - based on cognitive and behavioral experiments; and (iii) the discovery of general dynamical principles for cognition based on dynamical models. In this opinion article, we focus on the third problem and discuss how it provides the bridge between the solutions to the first two problems. We consider the possibility of creating low-dimensional dynamical models from multidimensional spatiotemporal data and its application to robust sequential cognitive processes in the context of finite processing capacity of the mind. © 2015.

Gonzalez-Grandio E.,Autonomous University of Madrid | Poza-Carrion C.,Autonomous University of Madrid | Sorzano C.O.S.,Autonomous University of Madrid | Cubas P.,Autonomous University of Madrid
Plant Cell | Year: 2013

Plants interpret a decrease in the red to far-red light ratio (R:FR) as a sign of impending shading by neighboring vegetation. This triggers a set of developmental responses known as shade avoidance syndrome. One of these responses is reduced branching through suppression of axillary bud outgrowth. The Arabidopsis thaliana gene BRANCHED1 (BRC1), expressed in axillary buds, is required for branch suppression in response to shade. Unlike wild-type plants, brc1 mutants develop several branches after a shade treatment. BRC1 transcription is positively regulated 4 h after exposure to low R:FR. Consistently, BRC1 is negatively regulated by phytochrome B. Transcriptional profiling of wild-type and brc1 buds of plants treated with simulated shade has revealed groups of genes whose mRNA levels are dependent on BRC1, among them a set of upregulated abscisic acid response genes and two networks of cell cycle-and ribosome-related downregulated genes. The downregulated genes have promoters enriched in TEOSINTE BRANCHED1, CYCLOIDEA, and PCF (TCP) binding sites, suggesting that they could be transcriptionally regulated by TCP factors. Some of these genes respond to BRC1 in seedlings and buds, supporting their close relationship with BRC1 activity. This response may allow the rapid adaptation of plants to fluctuations in the ratio of R:FR light. © 2013 American Society of Plant Biologists. All rights reserved.

Zumalacarregui M.,Autonomous University of Madrid | Zumalacarregui M.,University of Oslo | Koivisto T.S.,University of Oslo | Mota D.F.,University of Oslo
Physical Review D - Particles, Fields, Gravitation and Cosmology | Year: 2013

It is shown that a disformally coupled theory in which the gravitational sector has the Einstein-Hilbert form is equivalent to a quartic Dirac-Born-Infeld Galileon Lagrangian, possessing nonlinear higher derivative interactions, and hence allowing for the Vainshtein effect. This Einstein frame description considerably simplifies the dynamical equations and highlights the role of the different terms. The study of highly dense, nonrelativistic environments within this description unravels the existence of a disformal screening mechanism, while the study of static vacuum configurations reveals the existence of a Vainshtein radius, at which the asymptotic solution breaks down. Disformal couplings to matter also allow the construction of dark energy models, which behave differently than conformally coupled ones and introduce new effects on the growth of large scale structure over cosmological scales, on which the scalar force is not screened. We consider a simple disformally coupled dark matter model in detail, in which standard model particles follow geodesics of the gravitational metric and only dark matter is affected by the disformal scalar field. This particular model is not compatible with observations in the linearly perturbed regime. Nonetheless, disformally coupled theories offer enough freedom to construct realistic cosmological scenarios, which can be distinguished from the standard model through characteristic signatures. © 2013 American Physical Society.

Shkir M.,Autonomous University of Madrid | Shkir M.,University of Delhi
Spectrochimica Acta - Part A: Molecular and Biomolecular Spectroscopy | Year: 2014

l-asparagine l-tartaric acid single crystals of size 14 mm × 12 mm × 5 mm were grown. The morphology was recorded during its live growth process using inverted microscope. Structural confirmation of grown crystals was done by powder X-ray diffraction. The grown crystals are optically transparent. The Highest occupied molecular orbital and lowest unoccupied molecular orbital energy gap was obtained using the RHF/6-31G(d,p) and B3LYP/6-31G(d,p) level of theoretical calculations. The dipole moment calculated by RHF is 5.1716 D and by B3LYP is 2.8302 D. The calculated gas phase polarizability is 16.63791 Å3. © 2013 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

Levanyuk A.P.,Autonomous University of Madrid | Levanyuk A.P.,Jozef Stefan Institute | Blinc R.,Jozef Stefan Institute
Physical Review Letters | Year: 2013

Phase transitions in spherical particles of a cubic ferroelectric are considered within Landau-Ginzburg-Devonshire theory. Concentrating on effects of the depolarizing field, we study competition between states with homogeneous polarization and vortex structures. For large radii of the sphere (R>R c), the phase transition is into a vortex state while for R

Sanchez-Madrid F.,Autonomous University of Madrid
Trends in Molecular Medicine | Year: 2013

Early studies described CD69 as a leukocyte activation marker, and suggested its involvement in the activation of different leukocyte subsets as well as in the pathogenesis of chronic inflammation. However, recent investigations have showed that CD69 knockout mice exhibit an enhanced or reduced susceptibility to different experimental models of inflammatory diseases, including those mediated by T helper 17 (Th17) lymphocytes. In this regard, the expression of CD69, both in Th17 lymphocytes and by a subset of regulatory T cells, has an important role in the control of the immune response and the inflammatory phenomenon. Therefore, different evidence indicates that CD69 exerts a complex immunoregulatory role in humans, and that it could be considered as a target molecule for the therapy of immune-mediated diseases. © 2013 Elsevier Ltd.

Gladkova A.,University of New England of Australia | Romero-Trillo J.,Autonomous University of Madrid
Journal of Pragmatics | Year: 2014

This study addresses the question of the ethnopragmatic conceptualization of 'beautiful' in three European languages - English, Russian and Spanish. Specifically, it investigates the polysemy and the spheres of application of the following words: English beautiful, Russian krasivyj, Spanish bonito/a, as the words that better represent aesthetic positive appraisal in these languages.The data for the study comes from three online corpora: Russian National Corpus (Russian), Cobuild Wordbanks Online (English) and Corpus de Referencia del Español Actual (Spanish). Through corpus analysis methodology we investigate the most common collocations and the pragmatic and contextual uses of these terms.On the basis of this analysis our study proposes semantic explications of the words beautiful, krasivyj, and bonito/a in universal human concepts within the theoretical framework of the Natural Semantic Metalanguage (NSM). In particular, we investigate the presence of the perception universals identified by NSM: SEE, HEAR, and FEEL, which in our data are central to the analysis of the aesthetics vocabulary along with the primitives GOOD, SOMEONE, SOMETHING and THINK.To sum up, the article elaborates, describes and reveals similarities and differences in their perceptions of 'beautiful' across the three languages in relation to the nouns modified by this concept. © 2013 Elsevier B.V.

Lopez Vaquero N.,Autonomous University of Madrid | Rodriguez T.R.,Helmholtz Center for Heavy Ion Research | Egido J.L.,Autonomous University of Madrid
Physics Letters, Section B: Nuclear, Elementary Particle and High-Energy Physics | Year: 2011

The influence of large amplitude pairing fluctuations is investigated in the framework of beyond mean field symmetry conserving configuration mixing calculations. In the numerical application the finite range density dependent Gogny force is used. We investigate the nucleus 54Cr with particle number and angular momentum projected wave functions considering the axial quadrupole deformation and the pairing gap degree of freedom as generator coordinates. We find that the effects of the pairing fluctuations increase with the excitation energy and the angular momentum. The self-consistency in the determination of the basis states plays an important role. © 2011 Elsevier B.V.

Rodriguez T.R.,Helmholtz Center for Heavy Ion Research | Egido J.L.,Autonomous University of Madrid
Physical Review C - Nuclear Physics | Year: 2011

We study the structure of the neutron-rich 44S isotope with modern configuration mixing methods based on the Gogny interaction, including beyond-mean-field effects. Restoration of particle number and rotational symmetries are taken into account as well as shape mixing in the whole triaxial (β2,γ) plane. We obtain a qualitative agreement between the calculated spectrum and the experimental data reported recently. Very extended collective wave functions in the (β2,γ) plane are found for the lowest states, corresponding to very flat potentials, which indicate wide configuration mixing and support the weakening of the N=28 magic number. © 2011 American Physical Society.

Rodriguez T.R.,Helmholtz Center for Heavy Ion Research | Rodriguez T.R.,Autonomous University of Madrid | Egido J.L.,Autonomous University of Madrid
Physics Letters, Section B: Nuclear, Elementary Particle and High-Energy Physics | Year: 2011

We study the low-lying energy spectrum of the rp-process waiting point nucleus Zr80 with state-of-the-art beyond mean field methods with the Gogny D1S interaction. Symmetry restoration and configuration mixing of axial and triaxial shapes are included in the calculations. Five 0+ states corresponding to different nuclear shapes are obtained below 2.25 MeV and several rotational and γ-bands built upon them are identified. Nevertheless, these states do not modify the β-decay half-life having a negligible effect in the rp-process. A good agreement with the available experimental data is obtained. © 2011 Elsevier B.V.

Lucini B.,University of Swansea | Panero M.,Helsinki Institute of Physics | Panero M.,Autonomous University of Madrid
Progress in Particle and Nuclear Physics | Year: 2014

An elementary, pedagogical introduction to the large-N limit of QCD and to its phenomenological implications is presented, and a survey of lattice results in the 't Hooft limit is briefly discussed. © 2014 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

Navarrete M.,Instituto Cajal | Perea G.,Instituto Cajal | de Sevilla D.F.,Autonomous University of Madrid | Gomez-Gonzalo M.,Instituto Cajal | And 3 more authors.
PLoS Biology | Year: 2012

Long-term potentiation (LTP) of synaptic transmission represents the cellular basis of learning and memory. Astrocytes have been shown to regulate synaptic transmission and plasticity. However, their involvement in specific physiological processes that induce LTP in vivo remains unknown. Here we show that in vivo cholinergic activity evoked by sensory stimulation or electrical stimulation of the septal nucleus increases Ca 2+ in hippocampal astrocytes and induces LTP of CA3-CA1 synapses, which requires cholinergic muscarinic (mAChR) and metabotropic glutamate receptor (mGluR) activation. Stimulation of cholinergic pathways in hippocampal slices evokes astrocyte Ca 2+ elevations, postsynaptic depolarizations of CA1 pyramidal neurons, and LTP of transmitter release at single CA3-CA1 synapses. Like in vivo, these effects are mediated by mAChRs, and this cholinergic-induced LTP (c-LTP) also involves mGluR activation. Astrocyte Ca 2+ elevations and LTP are absent in IP 3R2 knock-out mice. Downregulating astrocyte Ca 2+ signal by loading astrocytes with BAPTA or GDPβS also prevents LTP, which is restored by simultaneous astrocyte Ca 2+ uncaging and postsynaptic depolarization. Therefore, cholinergic-induced LTP requires astrocyte Ca 2+ elevations, which stimulate astrocyte glutamate release that activates mGluRs. The cholinergic-induced LTP results from the temporal coincidence of the postsynaptic activity and the astrocyte Ca 2+ signal simultaneously evoked by cholinergic activity. Therefore, the astrocyte Ca 2+ signal is necessary for cholinergic-induced synaptic plasticity, indicating that astrocytes are directly involved in brain storage information. © 2012 Navarrete et al.

Romero-Gomez M.,University of Seville | Berenguer M.,University of Valencia | Molina E.,Complejo Hospitalario Universitario Of Santiago Of Compostela | Calleja J.L.,Autonomous University of Madrid
Journal of Hepatology | Year: 2013

The addition of protease inhibitors, boceprevir or telaprevir, to peginterferon + ribavirin (PegIFN/RBV) increases the frequency as well as the severity, and hence, clinical relevance of anemia, which has now become one of the major complications associated with triple therapy. Most significant factors associated with anemia in patients receiving triple therapy include older age, lower body mass index (BMI), advanced fibrosis, and lower baseline hemoglobin. The variability in inosine triphosphate pyrophosphatase (ITPA) gene, which encodes a protein that hydrolyses inosine triphosphate (ITP), has been identified as an essential genetic factor for anemia both in dual and triple therapy. The correct management of anemia is based on anticipation, characterization and therapeutic management. Basically, anemia can be characterized in 3 types: ferropenic (mostly in fertile women), thalassemic type hemolytic anemia, and anemia from chronic processes. Functional deficit of iron should also be excluded in patients with normal ferritin and lower saturation of transferrin. Ribavirin dose reduction and epoetin, sequentially, are indicated in the management of anemia. Epoetin non-response can be caused by lack of time, type of anemia, functional iron deficit or erythropoietin resistance. In the transplantation setting, adding a protease inhibitor to PegIFN/RBV results in a significant increase in the incidence and severity of anemia and, as a consequence, a greater need for epoetin, transfusions, and ribavirin dose reductions. Packed red cell transfusions are utilized when hemoglobin decreases to less than 7.5 g/dl and/or there are clinical symptoms and/or there is no response to other therapeutic measures. © 2013 European Association for the Study of the Liver. Published.

John V.,Weierstrass Institute for Applied Analysis And Stochastics | John V.,Free University of Berlin | Novo J.,Autonomous University of Madrid
Journal of Computational Physics | Year: 2012

Finite element and finite difference discretizations for evolutionary convection-diffusion-reaction equations in two and three dimensions are studied which give solutions without or with small under- and overshoots. The studied methods include a linear and a nonlinear FEM-FCT scheme, simple upwinding, an ENO scheme of order 3, and a fifth order WENO scheme. Both finite element methods are combined with the Crank-Nicolson scheme and the finite difference discretizations are coupled with explicit total variation diminishing Runge-Kutta methods. An assessment of the methods with respect to accuracy, size of under- and overshoots, and efficiency is presented, in the situation of a domain which is a tensor product of intervals and of uniform grids in time and space. Some comments to the aspects of adaptivity and more complicated domains are given. The obtained results lead to recommendations concerning the use of the methods. © 2011 Elsevier Inc.

Carretero M.I.,University of Seville | Pozo M.,Autonomous University of Madrid
Applied Clay Science | Year: 2010

A wide range and variety of minerals are used in the pharmaceutical industry as active ingredients. Such minerals may be administered either orally as antacids, gastrointestinal protectors, antidiarrhoeaics, osmotic oral laxatives, homeostatics, direct emetics, antianemics and mineral supplements, or parenterally as antianemics and homeostatics. They may also be used topically as antiseptics, disinfectants, dermatological protectors, anti-inflammatories, local anesthetics, keratolytic reducers and decongestive eye drops. In all cases the LADME process of the minerals is described. In the cosmetic industry minerals are used as solar protectors as well as in toothpastes, creams, powder and emulsions, bathroom salts and deodorants. The minerals in use belong to the following groups: oxides (rutile, periclase, zincite), carbonates (calcite, magnesite, hydrocincite, smithsonite), sulphates (epsomite, mirabilite, melanterite, chalcanthite, zincosite, goslarite, alum), chlorides (halite, sylvite), hydroxides (brucite, gibbsite, hydrotalcite), elements (sulphur), sulphides (greenockite), phosphates (hydroxyapatite), nitrates (niter), borates (borax) and phyllosilicates (smectite, palygorskite, sepiolite, kaolinite, talc, mica). The therapeutic activity of these minerals is controlled by their physical and physico-chemical properties as well as their chemical composition. The important properties are high sorption capacity, large specific surface area, solubility in water, reactivity toward acids, high refractive index, high heat retention capacity, opacity, low hardness, astringency, and high reflectance. © 2009 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

Rodriguez T.R.,Helmholtz Center for Heavy Ion Research | Rodriguez T.R.,Autonomous University of Madrid | Rodriguez T.R.,CEA Saclay Nuclear Research Center | Martinez-Pinedo G.,Helmholtz Center for Heavy Ion Research
Physical Review Letters | Year: 2010

We present an extensive study of nuclear matrix elements (NME) for the neutrinoless double-beta decay of the nuclei Ca48, Ge76, Se82, Zr96, Mo100, Cd116, Sn124, Te128, Te130, Xe136, and Nd150 based on state-of-the-art energy density functional methods using the Gogny D1S functional. Beyond-mean-field effects are included within the generating coordinate method with particle number and angular momentum projection for both initial and final ground states. We obtain a rather constant value for the NMEs around 4.7 with the exception of Ca48 and Nd150, where smaller values are found. We analyze the role of deformation and pairing in the evaluation of the NME and present detailed results for the decay of Nd150. © 2010 The American Physical Society.

Quevedo-Teruel O.,Autonomous University of Madrid | Kehn M.N.M.,National Chiao Tung University | Rajo-Iglesias E.,Charles III University of Madrid
IEEE Transactions on Antennas and Propagation | Year: 2011

A study of an innovative antenna based on split ring resonators (SSRs) is presented. SSRs have been exhaustively used in the literature as the unit cell of periodic structures for obtaining left-handed media, whose interesting characteristics can be applied to waveguides or antennas. In this work, the authors propose the use of only one unit cell of a double SRR as a radiator. The double SRR is printed on a grounded dielectric slab, acting as the radiating element of a microstrip patch antenna, and grounded pins are used to short-circuit the structure for size reduction. A compact dual band antenna is obtained in this way. For example, a particular design making use of PP εr = 2.2as substrate allows a size of 0.05 λ 0× 0.05 λ0 for the lower frequency of operation with an acceptable radiation efficiency. Simulated and measured results of return losses, gain and radiation efficiency of this new type of patch antenna are provided. © 2011 IEEE.

Perez-Escudero A.,Instituto Cajal | Perez-Escudero A.,Autonomous University of Madrid | de Polavieja G.G.,Instituto Cajal | de Polavieja G.G.,Autonomous University of Madrid
PLoS Computational Biology | Year: 2011

Animals living in groups make movement decisions that depend, among other factors, on social interactions with other group members. Our present understanding of social rules in animal collectives is mainly based on empirical fits to observations, with less emphasis in obtaining first-principles approaches that allow their derivation. Here we show that patterns of collective decisions can be derived from the basic ability of animals to make probabilistic estimations in the presence of uncertainty. We build a decision-making model with two stages: Bayesian estimation and probabilistic matching. In the first stage, each animal makes a Bayesian estimation of which behavior is best to perform taking into account personal information about the environment and social information collected by observing the behaviors of other animals. In the probability matching stage, each animal chooses a behavior with a probability equal to the Bayesian-estimated probability that this behavior is the most appropriate one. This model derives very simple rules of interaction in animal collectives that depend only on two types of reliability parameters, one that each animal assigns to the other animals and another given by the quality of the non-social information. We test our model by obtaining theoretically a rich set of observed collective patterns of decisions in three-spined sticklebacks, Gasterosteus aculeatus, a shoaling fish species. The quantitative link shown between probabilistic estimation and collective rules of behavior allows a better contact with other fields such as foraging, mate selection, neurobiology and psychology, and gives predictions for experiments directly testing the relationship between estimation and collective behavior. © 2011 Pérez-Escudero, de Polavieja.

Rodriguez T.R.,Autonomous University of Madrid | Rodriguez T.R.,Helmholtz Center for Heavy Ion Research | Egido J.L.,Autonomous University of Madrid
Physical Review C - Nuclear Physics | Year: 2010

We present the first implementation in the (β,γ) plane of the generator coordinate method with full triaxial angular momentum and particle number projected wave functions using the Gogny force. Technical details about the performance of the method and the convergence of the results in both the symmetry restoration and the configuration mixing parts are discussed in detail. We apply the method to the study of Mg24; the calculated energies of excited states as well as the transition probabilities are compared to the available experimental data, showing a good overall agreement. In addition, we present the RVAMPIR approach, which provides a good description of the ground and γ bands in the absence of strong mixing. © 2010 The American Physical Society.

Zhu J.,University of California at Berkeley | Christensen J.,Autonomous University of Madrid | Jung J.,Autonomous University of Madrid | Jung J.,University of Aalborg | And 5 more authors.
Nature Physics | Year: 2011

For classical waves such as light or sound, diffraction sets a natural limit on how finely the details of an object can be recorded on its image. Recently, various optical superlenses based on the metamaterials concept have shown the possibility of overcoming the diffraction limit. Similar two-dimensional (2D) acoustic hyperlens designs have also been explored. Here we demonstrate a 3D holey-structured metamaterial that achieves acoustic imaging down to a feature size of λ/50. The evanescent field components of a subwavelength object are efficiently transmitted through the structure as a result of their strong coupling with Fabry-Pérot resonances inside the holey plate. This capability of acoustic imaging at a very deep-subwavelength scale may open the door for a broad range of applications, including medical ultrasonography, underwater sonar and ultrasonic non-destructive evaluation. © 2011 Macmillan Publishers Limited. All rights reserved.

Garcia-Bellido J.,Autonomous University of Madrid | Roest D.,University of Groningen | Scalisi M.,University of Groningen | Zavala I.,University of Groningen
Physical Review D - Particles, Fields, Gravitation and Cosmology | Year: 2014

We provide strong evidence for universality of the inflationary field range: given an accurate measurement of (ns,r), one can infer Δφ in a model-independent way in the sub-Planckian regime for a range of universality classes of inflationary models. Both the tensor-to-scalar ratio as well as the spectral tilt are essential for the field range. Given the Planck constraints on ns, the Lyth bound is strengthened by two orders of magnitude: whereas the original bound gives a sub-Planckian field range for r2×10-3, we find that ns=0.96 brings this down to r2×10-5. © 2014 American Physical Society.

Garcia-Bellido J.,Autonomous University of Madrid | Roest D.,University of Groningen
Physical Review D - Particles, Fields, Gravitation and Cosmology | Year: 2014

We extend previous classifications of inflationary models by means of their behavior at large N, where N is the number of e-foldings. In addition to the perturbative 1/N case, whose slow-roll parameters fall off as powers of 1/N, we introduce the constant, nonperturbative and logarithmic classes. This covers the large majority of inflationary models. Furthermore, we calculate the running of the spectral tilt for all these classes. Remarkably, we find that the tilt's runnings essentially cluster around the per-mil level. We comment on the implications for future experiments. © 2014 American Physical Society.

Agency: European Commission | Branch: FP7 | Program: CP-IP-SICA | Phase: SSH.2011.4.1-1 | Award Amount: 9.88M | Year: 2012

NOPOOR aims to build new knowledge on the nature and extent of poverty in developing countries to provide policymakers with a broader understanding of poverty. We believe that poverty cannot be tackled without a comprehensive approach. We know that poverty is a multidimensional phenomenon, but NOPOOR will explore new and uncharted dimensions. It is not just a picture of poverty, but also an understanding of poverty entry and exit processes that is needed for achieving MDGs and for making more effective the policies. Nineteen experienced partners are involved in the project, which includes ten teams from developing and emerging countries in three regions (Latin America, sub-Saharan Africa and South Asia). These countries have implemented different poverty reduction policies, and this will form the basis for the comparative and case studies approach taken. The project will identify key mechanisms that explain the persistence and exacerbation of poverty, which have been altered by the insertion of developing countries into the globalization process, including trade, aid, FDI and migration, and by the growing interdependence of economies. Causes may differ between countries. This calls for policies and actions to be tailored to each poor countrys characteristics, including their access to resources, political regime, quality of institutions and governance. These points are developed by various approaches, including political economics, and different methods: surveys, econometric studies and case studies. NOPOOR will put significant resources into generating new knowledge from original surveys, database work and qualitative work. .It will also look forward to future scenarios. Conclusions will be oriented to policy recommendations. Beyond this contribution to scientific knowledge, NOPOOR will pursue an active policy of dissemination and capacity building, including training of young Southern researchers and the implementation of a permanent network with National Institutes of Statistics (NIS). The project is policy-oriented. NOPOOR will accompany the EUs agenda for its policy against poverty by consultations, guidance notes, and policy briefs on issues relating to the program. The review of MDG will constitute an important point of focus in the future years.

Agency: European Commission | Branch: H2020 | Program: MSCA-ITN-ETN | Phase: MSCA-ITN-2015-ETN | Award Amount: 3.86M | Year: 2016

NEUTRINOS and DARK MATTER (DM) are the most abundant and also the most elusive building-blocks of nature because of their tenuous couplings to the ordinary matter we are made of. Each particle has a mirror image with identical mass and opposite charge: its antiparticle. What is the essential nature of particles and antiparticles? This is a most fundamental open question in science. The laws of physics are almost -but not quite- symmetric for particles and antiparticles, and this could explain why the universe is made of matter, i.e. why we are here. Tiny differences detected in visible matter are largely insufficient, while an asymmetric behaviour of neutrinos or of DM may be the seed. In turn, the unnaturally symmetric behaviour of strong interactions points to a new particle, the axion, also a superb DM candidate. For the first time, the connection between these asymmetries in the visible and invisible world will be addressed. Very timely, an ambitious experimental search of asymmetric behaviour has been launched on neutrinos, axions and other DM, and the Higgs, with imminent major breakthroughs. The path to understand the Universe and build the New Standard Model must confront this problem. The mission of Elusives ITN is to form the new generation of researchers to accomplish this task, focusing on phenomenology with the necessary link to experiment. This is the first transnational such program, exploiting the capital investment in new experiments and overcoming the fragmentation of the research effort. ELUSIVES ITN is uniquely placed for it: * World-leadership in all relevant areas; * Multidisciplinarity; * Key theorists and experimentalists; * Outstanding training record; * CERN, Fermilab, SuperKamiokande and ADMX partners; * World leading cutting-edge research-related industry; * Highest professional beneficiary dissemination; * Top-quality expertise from emerging countries; * Optimal gender balance with over 50% female international leaders as coordinators.

Agency: European Commission | Branch: FP7 | Program: MC-ITN | Phase: FP7-PEOPLE-2012-ITN | Award Amount: 3.38M | Year: 2013

The SO2S network seeks to exploit Singlet Oxygen (1O2) as a green and benign oxidant for use in novel synthetic methodologies, crosslinking strategies, bioconjugation procedures and materials production. The chemistry described herein generates the means to both understand and influence biological systems by providing probes and reagents from analytical methods to new drugs - and to modulate materials towards optimal properties. Training in this area is highly interdisciplinary in nature requiring the joint efforts and contributions of chemists, physicists, biologists and material scientists. Ultimately our understanding and further development of singlet oxygen mediated oxidations should lead to useful applications in the fields of organic chemistry (improved routes towards natural products), medicinal chemistry (targeted delivery and novel diagnostics), physical chemistry (controlled singlet oxygen generation), and materials science (novel materials for water treatment and new arrays for improved diagnostics). The global objective of this network is to train young researchers to become skilled individuals that meet the current challenges of working in an interdisciplinary industrial environment wherein chemistry often forms the basis, but where it is utilized in a truly diverse range of applications.

Agency: European Commission | Branch: FP7 | Program: CP-FP | Phase: ENV.2007. | Award Amount: 4.20M | Year: 2009

Tropical forests harbour thousands of useful plants which are harvested and used in subsistence economies or traded in local, regional or international markets. The effect on the ecosystem is little known, and the forests resilience is badly understod. Palms are the most useful group of plants in tropical American forests and we will study the effect of extraction and trade of palms on forest in the western Amazon, the Andes and the Pacific lowlands. We will determine the size of the resource by making palm community studies in the different forest formations and determine the number of species and individuals of all palm species. The genetic structure of useful palm species will be studied to determine how much harvesting of the species contributes to genetic erosion of its populations, and whether extraction can be made without harm. We then determine how much palms are used for subsistence purposes by carrying out quantitative, ethnobotanical research in different forest types and then we study trade patterns for palm products from local markets to markets which involve export to other countries and continents. Palm populations are managed in various ways from sustainable ones to destructive harvesting; we will study different ways in which palms are managed and propose sustainable methods to local farmers, local governments, NGOs and other interested parties. Finally we will study national level mechanism that governs extraction, trade and commercialization of palm products, to identify positive and negative policies in relation to resilience of ecosystems and use this to propose sustainable policies to the governments. The results will be diseminated in a variety of ways, depending on need and stake holders, from popular leaflets and videos for farmers, reports for policy makers to scientific publication for the research community. The team behind the proposal represents 10 universities and research institutions in Europe and northwestern South America.

Agency: European Commission | Branch: FP7 | Program: MC-ITN | Phase: FP7-PEOPLE-2010-ITN | Award Amount: 3.77M | Year: 2011

Application of intense light fields opens the opportunity to image structures and dynamics of individual molecules with the combination of sub-Angstrom spatial and attosecond temporal resolution. However, intense light fields inevitably excite complex dynamics. The success of imaging techniques depends on our understanding of these largely unknown dynamics, creating demand for the theory of complex systems in intense fields. The scientific objective of the proposed network is to develop theoretical methods capable of (i) modeling multielectron dynamics in polyatomic molecules and clusters in intense light fields and (ii) reconstructing these dynamics from experimental observables. An important objective of the network is the development of a flexible software package for modeling intense-field multi-electron dynamics, addressed at the general scientific community. The overall project requires synergy of different areas in atomic and molecular physics, quantum chemistry, molecular spectroscopy and dynamics, and software development. Thus, the network will provide an ideal multidisciplinary environment for training young researchers in the combination of physics, chemistry and computational methods used by different communities and taught at different departments. Training its fellows by research at the forefront of sciences, the network will also deliver the forefront software technology.

Agency: European Commission | Branch: FP7 | Program: MC-ITN | Phase: FP7-PEOPLE-ITN-2008 | Award Amount: 3.22M | Year: 2010

With various forms of biometric technologies becoming available, there is a growing need for scientists who are able to assess the merits of these technologies when applied to forensics. The Marie Curie ITN `Bayesian Biometrics for Forensics, or BBfor2, will provide a training infrastructure that will educate Early Stage Researchers in the core biometric technologies of speaker, face and fingerprint recognition, as well as the forensic aspects of these technologies. According to modern interpretation of evidence in court, biometric evidence must be presented as likelihood ratios. The calibration of likelihood ratios of individual behavioural and physical biometrics and of combinations of biometric modalities, including measures of the quality of the traces, is a unifying topic in all research projects in this Network. The training of ESRs will be realized as individual PhD projects at various research labs, including a forensic institute. Apart from training at their host institute and secondments with other network partners, the ESRs will receive training in dedicated Summer Schools on Biometric Signal Processing, Bayesian Techniques in Forensic Applications and Legal Issues in Forensic Applications. The Network combines 8 European Universities and a leading Forensic Institute; it is augmented by a biometric industrial and a research institute, where secondments of the ESRs will take place.

Agency: European Commission | Branch: FP7 | Program: CP | Phase: ICT-2009.1.1 | Award Amount: 2.80M | Year: 2010

Metro Architectures Enabling Sub-Wavelengths is a project that directly addresses the central theme of the 4th Call for Pervasive & Trustworthy Network & Service Infrastructure. This central theme is the recognition worldwide that the network architectures of the last 20 years were never designed to cope with the new types of demands driven by phenomenon like the Internet, Video, Search, Social Networking and Cloud Computing. MAINS proposes 2 new architectures, a new approach to network management and will demonstrate an application that uses this new architecture to virtualise personal computer services. The key is the use of sub-wavelengths (bursty time-shared use of a single wavelength) by building an architecture based on dynamic time-shared use of ultra-fast tunable components and optical burst switching systems. Furthermore, the MAINS project will evaluate its outcome in hybrid mesh-ring test-bed that features innovative sub-wavelength switching nodes from University of Essex and Intune Networks. Finally, MAINS will perform a field trial involving real users in Cyprus, which will demonstrate a virtual PC application over sub-wavelength switching network as a proof-of-concept. MAINS outcome will allow efficient deployment of distributed application servers in a metro network, by means of a novel service to network interface and an extended GMPLS control plane. As a result, both CAPEX and OPEX are reduced, while enhanced capabilities for service deployment are achieved.

Agency: European Commission | Branch: H2020 | Program: CSA | Phase: SC5-10a-2014 | Award Amount: 3.13M | Year: 2015

Mapping and assessment of ecosystems and their services (ES) are core to the EU Biodiversity (BD) Strategy. They are essential if we are to make informed decisions. Action 5 sets the requirement for an EU-wide knowledge base designed to be: a primary data source for developing Europes green infrastructure; resource to identify areas for ecosystem restoration; and, a baseline against which the goal of no net loss of BD and ES can be evaluated. In response to these requirements, ESMERALDA aims to deliver a flexible methodology to provide the building blocks for pan-European and regional assessments. The work will ensure the timely delivery to EU member states in relation to Action 5 of the BD Strategy, supporting the needs of assessments in relation to the requirements for planning, agriculture, climate, water and nature policy. This methodology will build on existing ES projects and databases (e.g. MAES, OpenNESS, OPERAs, national studies), the Millennium Assessment (MA) and TEEB. ESMERALDA will identify relevant stakeholders and take stock of their requirements at EU, national and regional levels. The objective of ESMERALDA is to share experience through an active process of dialogue and knowledge co-creation that will enable participants to achieve the Action 5 aims. The mapping approach proposed will integrate biophysical, social and economic assessment techniques. Flexibility will be achieved by the creation of a tiered methodology that will encompass both simple (Tier 1) and more complex (Tier 3) approaches. The work will exploit expert- and land cover-based methods, existing ES indicator data and more complex ES models. As a result the outcomes will be applicable in different contexts. The strength of the ESMERALDA consortium lies in its ability to make solutions for mapping and assessment problems available to stakeholders from the start of the project, because our expertise allows us to build on existing research projects and data sharing systems.

Agency: European Commission | Branch: H2020 | Program: MSCA-ITN-EJD | Phase: MSCA-ITN-2014-EJD | Award Amount: 3.79M | Year: 2015

Theoretical Chemistry and Computational Modelling (TCCM) is emerging as a powerful tool to help in the rational design of new products and materials for pharmaceutical, chemical, energy, computer, and new-materials industries. To achieve this goal, it is necessary to go beyond the traditional electronic structure studies, and merge complementary techniques that are normally not available at a single research group. The research programme of the TCCM-EJD aims at applying computational modelling to problems demanded by the industry and with high societal relevance, namely Materials with special properties, Biomolecules for new therapies and Energy storage. The objective of the Joint Doctorate is to prepare future research leaders, able to develop and use multidisciplinary computational techniques (methods and software), with solid communication skills, with many contacts established through the intensive relationship with worldwide leading researchers of 12 European universities and 14 additional partners, including 7 industrial and spin-off companies. A Joint Doctorate in TCCM is already operative since 2011, based on a fully participative scientific discussion and assessment of all research projects with a clear interdisciplinary character and the direct participation of the non-academic sector. The training programme puts the emphasis in common training, including 3 annual International Workshops, 3 schools on High Performance Computing and 3 tutorials in new computer codes. Career development opportunities are enhanced with regular inter-sectoral activities, transferable skill education and career coaching.

Agency: European Commission | Branch: H2020 | Program: RIA | Phase: BIOTEC-6-2015 | Award Amount: 8.81M | Year: 2016

Metagenomes comprise enormous reservoirs coding for proteins with useful activities. Unfortunately, harvesting this reservoir is difficult, because useful candidates are rare and hidden in an overwhelming majority of irrelevant genes. Screening campaigns of metagenomic libraries thus require massive capital-expenditure for robotic systems and much manpower, making them expensive, slow and available to very few users. To enable valorisation of the potential of the metagenome, this project assembles an interdisciplinary and intersectoral consortium that will integrate a range of technologies into a platform designed to beat the odds of identifying library hits faster, more efficiently and by a wider user base. Exploration and exploitation of the metagenome will be made faster and more successful by (i) ultrahigh-throughput screening in picoliter droplets that dramatically lowers the cost per assay to well below 0.01 cents and allows throughput of 10e7 assays per hour; (ii) workflows that streamline and increase the yield of library construction and functional expression and (iii) workflows for efficient bioinformatic analysis of hits based on user-friendly software solutions for metagenome analysis. Emphasis is put on technologies that are straightforwardly implemented in non-specialist labs, maximising the impact of METAFLUIDICS. This platform will be used to identify enzymes for biosynthesis of therapeutic small molecules, for green bioenergy conversion, bioremediation, food chemistry and other industrial applications

Agency: European Commission | Branch: H2020 | Program: MSCA-ITN-ETN | Phase: MSCA-ITN-2016 | Award Amount: 4.03M | Year: 2016

The main objective of Training4CRM is to train a new generation of 15 highly inter-disciplinary early stage researchers at the highest international level and quality, who will be immediately employable in both the academic and industrial sectors due to their highly sought after cross- and interdisciplinary insights and expertise. Training4CRM addresses existing gaps within Cell-based Regenerative Medicine for treatment of neurodegenerative disorders (e.g. Parkinsons, Huntingtons, Epilepsy), which occur as a result of progressive loss of structure, function and/or death of neurons in the brain. The disorders have a high prevalence and are associated with impairments and disabilities with high emotional, financial and social burden. New scientific discoveries and technologies are needed, and Training4CRM sets out with the ambition to educate and train students within and across different scientific disciplines to be able to master the design, fabrication and testing of completely new tools and materials within the fields of: Micro- and Nanoengineering (nano/microstructures, 3D scaffolds and 3D lab-on-a-chip devices of different materials, geometries, architectures and properties, wireless electronic components; Biotechnology (human stem cells, human induced pluripotent stem cells, optogenetics, tissue engineering; Pre-clinical studies for the purpose of investigating in vivo, in experimental animals, how the developed cells, materials, structures affect the animal at the physiological and behavioral levels, unravelling the therapeutic effects of the developed strategies.

Agency: European Commission | Branch: H2020 | Program: SGA-RIA | Phase: FETFLAGSHIP | Award Amount: 89.00M | Year: 2016

Understanding the human brain is one of the greatest scientific challenges of our time. Such an understanding can provide profound insights into our humanity, leading to fundamentally new computing technologies, and transforming the diagnosis and treatment of brain disorders. Modern ICT brings this prospect within reach. The HBP Flagship Initiative (HBP) thus proposes a unique strategy that uses ICT to integrate neuroscience data from around the world, to develop a unified multi-level understanding of the brain and diseases, and ultimately to emulate its computational capabilities. The goal is to catalyze a global collaborative effort. During the HBPs first Specific Grant Agreement (SGA1), the HBP Core Project will outline the basis for building and operating a tightly integrated Research Infrastructure, providing HBP researchers and the scientific Community with unique resources and capabilities. Partnering Projects will enable independent research groups to expand the capabilities of the HBP Platforms, in order to use them to address otherwise intractable problems in neuroscience, computing and medicine in the future. In addition, collaborations with other national, European and international initiatives will create synergies, maximizing returns on research investment. SGA1 covers the detailed steps that will be taken to move the HBP closer to achieving its ambitious Flagship Objectives.

Agency: European Commission | Branch: H2020 | Program: MSCA-RISE | Phase: MSCA-RISE-2015 | Award Amount: 2.32M | Year: 2016

NEUTRINOS (Ns) and DARK MATTER (DM) are the most abundant particles in the universe. Their couplings to ordinary matter are so tenuous that they remained undiscovered -invisible- until very recently. N masses and DM constitute the first evidence ever of physics beyond the Standard Model of particle physics. The path to build the New Standard Model must confront the fundamental nature of the particles in the invisible sector at large. Furthermore, for each particle there is a mirror image with identical mass and opposite charge(s): its antiparticle. The laws of physics are almost particle-antiparticle symmetric: an asymmetry in Ns and/or DM properties may be the required seed that explains why the universe is made of matter and not antimatter, i.e. how come we are here, a fact unexplained by standard physics. In turn, the unnaturally symmetric behavior of strong interactions points to a new particle, the axion, a superb dark matter candidate. Very timely, an ambitious international experimental search has been launched on Ns, axions, other DM and Higgs physics with major breakthroughs expected soon. InvisiblesPlus will be the first transnational program addressing the N and DM properties at large, their interfaces, and in addition the connections of their particle/antiparticle asymmetries with those of the visible universe. It will also complement, continue and specially extend to a new qualitative realm the knowledge sharing and long-term collaboration of the well-established ITN Invisibles. InvisiblesPlus is ideally suited to the task: i) World leadership in all relevant areas; ii) Multidisciplinarity; iii) Key theorists and experimentalists; iv) XENON, Fermilab, CERN, SuperKamiokande and ADMX participate; iv) Innovative virtual institute; v) Top quality expertise from emerging countries; vi) Outstanding outreach, vii) Excellent junior/senior ratio in secondments; viii) Optimal in gender balance with over 50% female scientists in charge, plus the coordinator.

Agency: European Commission | Branch: FP7 | Program: CPCSA | Phase: ICT-2013.9.9 | Award Amount: 72.73M | Year: 2013

Understanding the human brain is one of the greatest challenges facing 21st century science. If we can rise to the challenge, we can gain profound insights into what makes us human, develop new treatments for brain diseases and build revolutionary new computing technologies. Today, for the first time, modern ICT has brought these goals within sight. The goal of the Human Brain Project, part of the FET Flagship Programme, is to translate this vision into reality, using ICT as a catalyst for a global collaborative effort to understand the human brain and its diseases and ultimately to emulate its computational capabilities. The Human Brain Project will last ten years and will consist of a ramp-up phase (from month 1 to month 36) and subsequent operational phases.\nThis Grant Agreement covers the ramp-up phase. During this phase the strategic goals of the project will be to design, develop and deploy the first versions of six ICT platforms dedicated to Neuroinformatics, Brain Simulation, High Performance Computing, Medical Informatics, Neuromorphic Computing and Neurorobotics, and create a user community of research groups from within and outside the HBP, set up a European Institute for Theoretical Neuroscience, complete a set of pilot projects providing a first demonstration of the scientific value of the platforms and the Institute, develop the scientific and technological capabilities required by future versions of the platforms, implement a policy of Responsible Innovation, and a programme of transdisciplinary education, and develop a framework for collaboration that links the partners under strong scientific leadership and professional project management, providing a coherent European approach and ensuring effective alignment of regional, national and European research and programmes. The project work plan is organized in the form of thirteen subprojects, each dedicated to a specific area of activity.\nA significant part of the budget will be used for competitive calls to complement the collective skills of the Consortium with additional expertise.

Agency: European Commission | Branch: FP7 | Program: CP-FP | Phase: SEC-2011.5.1-1 | Award Amount: 4.74M | Year: 2012

Identity management using Biometrics is deployed in a growing number of applications ranging from identification platforms (e.g. biometric passports) to access control systems for border checks or banking transactions. Unfortunately, the reliability of these technologies remains difficult to compare. There are no european-wide standards for evaluating their accuracy, their robustness to attacks or their privacy preservation strength. BEAT will fill this gap by building an online and open platform to transparently evaluate biometric systems, designing protocols and tools for vulnerability analysis and developing standardization documents for Common Criteria evaluations. The planned impact is three-fold: the reliability of biometric systems becomes standardized and comparable, potentially leading to a meaningful increase in their performance; technology transfer from research to companies becomes easier with the use of an interoperable framework; authorities and decision-makers become more informed about the progress made in biometrics as results impact standards.

The forecasted increase in the number of older people for this century will be accompanied by an increase of those with disabilities. Disability is usually preceded by a condition named frailty that encompasses changes associated with ageing, life styles and chronic diseases. To detect and intervene on it is of outstanding importance to prevent disability, as recovery from disability is unlikely. Recent documents stress the necessity of testing the clinical utility (in terms of risk prediction, diagnosis validity and prognostic significance) of the existing definition of frailty by using combinations of clinical criteria (current definition) and lab Biomarkers (BMs). We will measure the levels of blood and urine omic-based BMs in old people selected from eight cohorts, which include up to 75,000 participants, using standardized and innovative technology (WP1). This figure will allow us to test the research questions with a high power and validity. Combining these lab BMs with clinical BMs, we will develop predictive, diagnostic and prognostic models (WP2), with its modulation by nutrition and physical activity, in general old population and in old people showing some characteristics that confer a high risk for developing frailty (selected cardiovascular risk factors and diseases) (WP4). After that, a selected set of BMs will be validated prospectively (WP3) and assessed to find the best-fitted models (WP4). These models will guide the development of the ready-to-use kits to be implemented in the clinical settings. These kits will be at the center of dissemination and exploitation activities (WP5, WP6). A well-balanced consortium distributed over the individual tasks in the respective work packages will carry it out, with a strong participation of SMEs. In summary, FRAILOMIC is original, relevant, pertinent, feasible, overcome the usual research bottlenecks on Biomarkers, and fits perfectly with the topics addressed by the HEALTH.2012.2.1.1-2 call in human subjects

Agency: European Commission | Branch: FP7 | Program: NOE | Phase: ICT-2007.1.1 | Award Amount: 4.75M | Year: 2008

The BONE-proposal builds on the foundations laid out by the ePhoton/ONe projects in the previous Framework Programme. This Network of Excellence has brought together over several years the research activities within Europe in the field of Optical Networks and the BONE-project intends to validate this effort by stimulating a more intensified collaboration, exchange of researchers and building on Virtual Centres of Excellence that can serve to European industry with education and training, research tools and testlabs and pave the way to new technologies and architectures.\nThe Network of the Future, which is the central theme of this Call, will have to cope with a wide variety of applications running on a wide variety of terminals and with an increasing number of connected devices and increasing speed and data-loads. The BONE-proposal does not look into issues as convergence between mobile and fixed networks, nor does it consider issues regarding the optimised broadband access in the last mile using a wide variety of technologies such as DSL, cable, WiMAX, WiFi, PLC,... The BONE-proposal looks further into the future and takes as the final Network of the Future:\n- a high capacity, flexible, reconfigurable and self-healing optical Core and Metro network which supports the transport of massive amounts of data\n- a FTTx solution in which the x is as close as possible to the home, at the home, or even in the home. From this point the user is connected using terminal-specific technologies (wireless to handheld devices, fiber to home cinema, wireless to laptop, fixed connection to desktop,...)\nBONE clearly identifies the existence of the current technologies and also recognizes the fact that users also require the mobility of wireless access, but this mobile connection ends at a gateway or access points and from there a fixed connection is required and this fixed connection will finally be an optical link.

Agency: European Commission | Branch: FP7 | Program: CP | Phase: ICT-2007.1.6 | Award Amount: 8.85M | Year: 2008

Experimentally driven research is key to success in todays Internet. Many test beds support research and development, and product prototyping in communication networks. However, they tend to specialise in particular access technologies or services, or explore near term product offerings, often with limited availability and openness. An open and sustainable large-scale shared experimental facility will allow European industry and academia to innovate today and to design the future Internet. The OneLab2 project will leverage the original OneLab projects PlanetLab Europe test bed and its international visibility to make this facility a reality.\n\nOneLab2 is built on three complementary pillars. The Platform Pillar will operate PlanetLab Europe, extending PlanetLab service across Europe, and federating with other PlanetLab infrastructures worldwide. It will integrate new features into the system. The Tools Pillar will enhance the test-bed-native network monitoring service that supports experiments. And the Customers Pillar will meet the needs of the facilitys customers by providing them with access to diverse facilities, achieved through federating different types of test bed. An experimental facility must know its customers. OneLab2 will do this by directly involving pilot customers who are testing novel ideas in networking research.\n\nOneLab2s coalition assembles some of the most highly respected networking research teams from university and industry labs in Europe. Each team has an active research agenda in new network technologies, network monitoring, or test bed management. OneLab2s success would mean that PlanetLab Europe is established as a competitive and federated facility with international visibility and a broad set of customers, implementing OneLab2s vision and research contributions. PlanetLab Europe will continue to function beyond the end of the project period, providing ongoing services to the research community at large.

Agency: European Commission | Branch: FP7 | Program: NOE | Phase: ICT-2011.1.6 | Award Amount: 5.99M | Year: 2011

The goal of EINS is coordinating and integrating European research aimed at achieving a deeper multidisciplinary understanding of the development of the Internet as a societal and technological artefact, whose evolution is increasingly interwined with that of human societies. Its main objective is to allow an open and productive dialogue between all the disciplines which study Internet systems under any technological or humanistic perspective, and which in turn are being transformed by the continuous advances in Internet functionalities and applications. EINS will bring together research institutions focusing on network engineering, computation, complexity, security, trust, mathematics, physics, sociology, game theory, economics, political sciences, humanities, law, energy, transport, artistic expression, and any other relevant social and life sciences.\nThis multidisciplinary bridging of the different disciplines may also be seen as the starting point for a new Internet Science, the theoretical and empirical foundation for an holistic understanding of the complex techno-social interactions related to the Internet. It is supposed to inform the future technological, social, political choices concerning Internet technologies, infrastructures and policies made by the various public and private stakeholders, for example as for the far-ended possible consequences of architectural choices on social, economic, environmental or political aspects, and ultimately on quality of life at large.\nThe individual contributing disciplines will themselves benefit from a more holistic understanding of the Internet principles and in particular of the network effect. The unprecedented connectivity offered by the Internet plays a role often underappreciated in most of them; whereas the Internet provides both an operational development platform and a concrete empirical and experimental model. These multi- and inter-disciplinary investigations will improve the design of elements of Future Internet, enhance the understanding of its evolving and emerging implications at societal level, and possibly identify universal principles for understanding the Internet-based world that will be fed back to the participating disciplines. EINS will:\nCoordinate the investigation, from a multi-disciplinary perspective, of specific topics at the intersection between humanistic and technological sciences, such as privacy & identity, reputation, virtual communities, security & resilience, network neutrality\nLay the foundations for an Internet Science, based i.a. on Network Science and Web Science, aiming at understanding the impact of the network effect on human societies & organisations, as for technological, economic, social & environmental aspects\nProvide concrete incentives for academic institutions and individual researchers to conduct studies across multiple disciplines, in the form of online journals, conferences, workshops, PhD courses, schools, contests, and open calls

Agency: European Commission | Branch: FP7 | Program: ERC-AG | Phase: ERC-AG-LS6 | Award Amount: 2.01M | Year: 2012

Cell-cell synapses are an exquisitely evolved means of communication between cells. During the formation of the immune synapse (IS), diverse transmembrane and membrane associated molecules are reorganized into a highly segregated structure at the T cellAntigen-Presenting Cell (APC) contact site. As part of this process, the tubulin cytoskeleton is vectorially directed toward the center of the IS, where the microtubule-organizing center (MTOC) localizes. MTOC translocation is an early event in IS formation that brings the secretory apparatus into close apposition with the APC, thus providing the basis for polarized secretion. The proposal aims to define how the MTOC controls cytoskeletal rearrangement and communication at the IS, as a mechanism for macromolecule transport and nucleation of signalling molecules during synaptic contact. We will study the mechanisms of MTOC-mediated polarization of multivesicular bodies (MVB) and exosome delivery during IS formation, and will assess the role in these processes of MTOC translocation regulators (HDAC6) and microtubule (MT) polymerization promoters (Plk1 and EB1). MTOC-dependent mitochondrial polarization to the IS will be assessed as a bioenergetic source for cytoskeletal rearrangements, IS maturation and polarized exosomal delivery. In particular, our proposed study of the possible horizontal transfer of miRNAs during cognate interactions between immune cells has the potential to reveal how miRNAs can control the early initiation of immunity. We will investigate the mechanism of directional transfer of RNA-harbouring exosomes at the IS from T cell to APC, and will examine the functional consequences of this transfer on APC biology and on the immune response. These studies will open avenues for the treatment of immune-related diseases.

Agency: European Commission | Branch: FP7 | Program: CP-IP | Phase: HEALTH-2007-2.4.1-12 | Award Amount: 16.04M | Year: 2009

Recent research suggests that the hypoxic micro-environment of tumours is one of the major drivers of metastatic spread of cancer. Furthermore, hypoxic tumour micro-environments may result in treatment resistance of cancer cells, therefore causing a double effect of reducing the potential of a successful treatment of the cancer patient. This project seeks to clarify the roles and functions of the hypoxic tumour micro-environment in relation to the survival of solid tumours likely to metastasise. We will gain new knowledge about molecular mechanisms behind hypoxia-driven metastasis, like the epithelial-mesenchymal transition (EMT) by several routes: (a): mechanisms related to cell growth- and cell proliferation (UPR, mTOR, CA9, HIF, Notch, and VHL), (b): angiogenesis and lymphangiogenesis, (c): metabolism and pH-regulation (d): the handling of reactive oxygen species (ROS). We will generate animal models for the study of the role of hypoxia in metastases and develop a bio-bank of tumour and blood samples for molecular diagnostic studies. We will identify and develop advanced imaging techniques and biomarkers and identify micro-metastases in bone marrow of patients to assist in the selection of appropriate stratification of the actual primary tumours and metastases micro-environmental conditions. We will also create a machine-learning based classifier of tumour hypoxia. The consortium has the necessary expertise to perform proof-of-principle clinical testing of new treatment strategies. We will thus perform clinical tests of new drugs developed to attack the regulatory mechanisms selected from the pre-clinical work and possible synergisms of combined treatments. We will also test new radiotherapy strategies for treatment of primary as well as metastatic tumours. Cancer types chosen for clinical studies are non-small-cell lung carcinoma, squamous cell carcinoma of the larynx, prostate cancer, primary breast cancer and rectal cancer.

CosmoPHOS-nano is a multidisciplinary, translational and business-oriented project, aiming to accomplish the following objectives: 1) develop the CosmoPHOS system, which is a novel theranostic (diagnostic & therapeutic) nanotechnology-enabled portable combination system enabling endovascular in vivo near-infrared fluorescence molecular imaging, endovascular near-infrared targeted photodynamic therapy, real-time & follow-up therapy monitoring of atherosclerotic coronary artery disease (CAD), 2) nonclinically evaluate this system, 3) clinically validate the system after regulatory approval, & 4) reduce in the long-term CAD deaths and morbidity by up to 40%, resulting in a significant decrease of the European and global healthcare costs for CAD, increasing the income of the European healthcare industry from CAD market which is the global largest. The CosmoPHOS-nano consortium has a five year history of successful collaboration between the industrial and academic partners, and its funding would underpin a team devoted to delivering a novel powerful & affordable healthcare solution against the leading cause of death, without the need for heavy and expensive medical equipment. The CosmoPHOS system consists of two interacting components: a) targeted theranostic near-infrared photoactivatable biocompatible nanomedicines, and b) medical devices. After systemic administration, the nanomedicines targeted accumulate in coronary atherosclerotic plaques, followed by endocoronary photoactivation and detection by the medical devices, enabling molecular imaging, targeted therapy, real-time & follow-up therapy monitoring of CAD. Preliminary in vitro & in vivo successful experimental results, as well as parts of the CosmoPHOS system are already available from the prior five year collaboration. The project plan includes: A) nonclinical R&D (30 months); B) nonclinical validation & regulatory approval (18 months); C) first-in-man phase-I clinical trial in 20 CAD patients (12 months).

Agency: European Commission | Branch: FP7 | Program: CP-FP | Phase: HEALTH.2013.2.3.0-1 | Award Amount: 7.44M | Year: 2013

The World Health Organisation in its report on Neglected Tropical Diseases has stated that there is overwhelming evidence to show that the burden caused by many of the 17 diseases that affect more than 1billion people worldwide can be effectively controlled and, in many cases, eliminated or even eradicated. Leishmaniasis caused by Leishmania spp is one of them and poses a grave health risk to an estimated 350 million people across the world. Among the three clinical patterns of Leishmaniasis (cutaneous, mucocutaneous, and visceral), Visceral Leishmaniasis (VL), also known as kala azar is the most severe in terms of symptoms and clinical complications. If left untreated, the disease can have a fatality rate as high as 100%.Only few drugs are available in the foreseeable future for treating patients from this disease. The development of a human vaccine against Leishmania is an achievable goal.In endemic areas, the majority of infected persons do not develop clinical symptoms and past infection leads to robust immunity against reinfection. In our approach, we mimic a natural infection cycle of Leishmania, by introducing the recombinant protein LJM11 from the sand fly saliva and two other components of Leishmania infantum based on well proven effective recombinant proteins from Leishmania: KMP11 and a recombinant fusion protein SMT-NH. These components will be formulated with a strong TLR4 agonist, already tested in humans, to enhance and modulate the immune response. This innovative vaccine will be tested at the Swiss Tropical and Public Health Institute, which already has experience in conducting clinical trials with Leishmania vaccines. The phase I/II clinical trial will be immunologically monitored by experienced institutions from EU and US. A European SME would have most of the benefits of this project: it would allow to further develop a vaccine against this neglected disease and increase the possibility to out-license this vaccine for commercialization.

Agency: European Commission | Branch: FP7 | Program: CP-FP | Phase: NMP.2012.1.1-1 | Award Amount: 4.60M | Year: 2013

Biomass conversion is of high priority for sustainable fuel production, to reduce the reliance of Europe on fossil fuel production and to provide environmentally friendly energy. Aqueous phase reforming (APR) is one of the most promising, competitive ways for the production of liquid and gaseous fuels from biomass, since it is low energy consuming. APR enables processing of wet biomass resources without energy intensive drying and additional hydrogen production from water by the water-gas-shift reaction. Hence, APR is one of the processes that allow fast industrialization of conversion systems suited for wet biomass resources. Catalysis is here the key technology. State-of-the-art catalysts used are a) not optimized and b) can lack hydrothermal stability. Regarding the latter, the paradigm shifts towards carbon supported catalysts, due to its superior hydrothermal stability. Within the project experts for multinational industry, SMEs and academia focus on the optimization of hydrothermally stable carbon supported catalysts for the APR to unleash the potential of catalysts. Methodology employed is not a trial and error optimization. By deduction of fundamental structure-property relationships from highly defined model catalysts a catalyst design capability is build up. This capability will be used for optimization with the objectives to increase catalyst activity, selectivity and hydrothermal stability. Cost efficient routes to produce these catalysts in a technical scale will be evaluated and a demonstration catalysts synthesized and operated in long term tests with technical feedstocks and at a competitive price.

Agency: European Commission | Branch: H2020 | Program: IA | Phase: BIOTEC-3-2014 | Award Amount: 9.25M | Year: 2015

C-C bond forming reactions are at the heart of industrial organic synthesis, but remain largely unexplored due to long development timelines and the lack of broad biocatalytic reaction platforms. CARBAZYMES addresses these challenges by assembling an interdisciplinary and intersectoral consortium as a powerful synergistic tool to promote innovation in the field of biocatalytic C-C bond formation at large scale, and thus the global competitiveness of the European chemical and pharmaceutical industry. The proposed consortium, with 50% industrial participation, represents academia but also commercial interests in different stages of the research-to-market process. This top-down approach, together with a life-cycle innovation approach ensures an industrial drive to the project. Clearly aligned with the scope of topic BIOTEC3-2014, CARBAZYMES will pursue the biocatalytic synthesis (spanning TRLs 5-7) of 4 APIs and 3 bulk chemicals corresponding to market needs detected by the industrial partners in the Consortium. This will be accomplished through an inter-disciplinary approach which includes: i) a broad platform of 4 types of unique C-C bond-forming enzymes, mostly lyases; ii) the capacity to rapidly evolve enzymes to operate under industrial conditions by means of novel enzyme panels and massive screening methods; iii) application of microreactor technology for bioprocess characterization; iv) demonstration actions comprising technical (up to 100L) and economic viability studies carried out by industrial partners. CARBAZYMES unmistakably aims to have social and economic impact by addressing markets worth bn , developing enzyme evolution technologies beyond the state of the art and creating qualified jobs and technical-scale facilities at the industrial partners sites. CARBAZYMES will also achieve an environmental impact by enforcing that the developed processes replace more energy and resource intensive processes, thus leading to reduced environmental footprints.

Agency: European Commission | Branch: FP7 | Program: CP | Phase: INFRA-2011-2.1.1. | Award Amount: 10.17M | Year: 2011

Key questions in physics can be answered only by constructing a giant underground observatory to search for rare events and study terrestrial and astrophysical neutrinos. The Astroparticle Roadmap of ApPEC/ASPERA strongly supports this, recommending that: a new large European infrastructure of 100000-500000 ton for proton decay and low-energy neutrinos be evaluated as a common design study together with the underground infrastructure and eventual detection of accelerator neutrino beams. The latest CERN roadmap also states: a range of very important non-accelerator experiments takes place at the overlap of particle and astroparticle physics exploring otherwise inaccessible phenomena; Council will seek with ApPEC a coordinated strategy in these areas of mutual interest. Reacting to this, uniting scientists across Europe with industrial support to produce a very strong collaboration, the LAGUNA FP7 design study has had a very positive effect. It enabled, via study of seven pre-selected locations (Finland, France, Italy, Poland, Romania, Spain and UK), a detailed geo-technical assessment of the giant underground cavern needed, concluding finally that no geo-technical show-stoppers to cavern construction exist. Building on this, the present design study will address two challenges vital to making a final detector and site choice: (i) to determine the full cost of construction underground, commissioning and long-term operation of the infrastructure, and (ii) to determine the full impact of including long baseline neutrino physics with beams from CERN.

Agency: European Commission | Branch: FP7 | Program: CP-CSA | Phase: Fission-2013-3.1.1 | Award Amount: 10.26M | Year: 2013

Within the OPERRA project, it is proposed that the MELODI Association, as a well-advanced network, takes the lead in establishing the necessary structures able to manage the long-term European research programmes in radiation protection, also taking advantage of the valuable experience gathered through the DoReMi network of excellence. Whilst in fields adjacent to low-dose risk research (radioecology, nuclear emergency management) scientific issues would continue to be hosted by the sister associations, Alliance and NERIS, these associations are encouraged to join MELODI to establish an umbrella structure as equal partners. OPERRA will exploit the synergies of EURATOM and other EC programmes considering the most relevant joint program areas and mechanisms for funding joint activities. The project will also strengthen the links with national funding programs as well as the European education and training structures. Also, it will take steps towards a greater involvement of those new Member States who could benefit from increased participation in the radiation research programmes. Finally, OPERRA will take steps to further integrate the joint use of infrastructures in European countries, and to develop and facilitate an easier access to research infrastructures. The final objective of this project is to build up an umbrella coordination structure that has the capacity in a legal and logistical sense to administer future calls for research in radiation protection as a whole (including low-dose risk, radioecology, nuclear emergency management, and also research activities related to the medical uses of ionizing radiation) on behalf of the European Commission. OPERRA will prepare the organisation for a first competitive call by the end of 2013 for projects in low-dose risk research and a second competitive call in 2014 for broader projects in radiation protection research, subject to the approval of EC services, with the support of Go-between administrator operator and an external advisory entity.

Agency: European Commission | Branch: FP7 | Program: CSA-SA | Phase: HEALTH-2007-4.2-3 | Award Amount: 1.22M | Year: 2008

This proposal aims to review current knowledge and issues related to the economic impact of health at work, to assemble, organise, analyse and synthesise data from national projects and surveys, and to recommend future actions for research and policy development aiming at improving health and safety at work in a changing labour market environment in the European Union in an era of ageing populations, feminised labour markets and increased incidence of Small and Medium Enterprices (SMEs). This is achieved through co-ordinated reviews, the development of common databases regarding indicators of health and safety at work in the participant countries (including the incidence of accidents and illnesses of work, the incidence of absenteeism, and early retirement due to accidents/illnesses at work,) and the associated GIS analysis capability. In addition, a pilot study aiming at designing appropriate data collection protocols is designed to explore the appropriateness of small scale surveys, using purpose-build questionnaire, to determine the preference setting of both employers and employees with regard to health and safety at work and to highlight the cost and benefits of investing in improving the health and safety at work. The above lead to a series of co-ordination meetings and workshops at which the status of health and safety at work, its repercussions for the quality of work and its effects on Europes competitiveness are reviewed and studied. A comparative EU-wide assessment of the structure and dynamics of the health and safety at work is carried out. Policy recommendations aiming at improving the health and safety at work in the context of changing labour market environment are detailed with particular reference to the ageing population, the feminisation of the labour markets and the increased incidence of SMEs.

Alvarez-Castelao B.,Autonomous University of Madrid | Castano J.G.,Autonomous University of Madrid
Cellular and Molecular Life Sciences | Year: 2011

Intracellular deposits of aggregated alpha-synuclein are a hallmark of Parkinson's disease. Protein-protein interactions are critical in the regulation of cell proteostasis. Synphilin-1 interacts both in vitro and in vivo with alpha-synuclein promoting its aggregation. We report here that synphilin-1 specifically inhibits the degradation of alpha-synuclein wild-type and its missense mutants by the 20S proteasome due at least in part by the interaction of the ankyrin and coiled-coil domains of synphilin-1 (amino acids 331-555) with the N-terminal region (amino acids 1-60) of alpha-synuclein. Co-expression of synphilin-1 and alpha-synuclein wild-type in HeLa and N2A cells produces a specific increase in the half-life of alpha-synuclein, as degradation of unstable fluorescent reporters is not affected. Synphilin-1 inhibition can be relieved by co-expression of Siah-1 that targets synphilin-1 to degradation. Synphilin-1 inhibition of the proteasomal pathway of degradation of alpha-synuclein may help to understand the pathophysiological changes occurring in PD and other synucleinopathies. © Springer Basel AG 2010.

Yebenes H.,Autonomous University of Madrid | Mesa P.,Macromolecular Crystallography Group | Munoz I.G.,Macromolecular Crystallography Group | Montoya G.,Macromolecular Crystallography Group | Valpuesta J.M.,Autonomous University of Madrid
Trends in Biochemical Sciences | Year: 2011

Chaperonins are ubiquitous chaperones found in Eubacteria, eukaryotic organelles (group I), Archaea and the eukaryotic cytosol (group II). They all share a common structure and a basic functional mechanism. Although a large amount of information has been gathered for the simpler group I, much less is known about group II chaperonins. Recent crystallographic and electron microscopy structures have provided new insights into the mechanism of these chaperonins and revealed important differences between group I and II chaperonins, mainly in the molecular rearrangements that take place during the functional cycle. These differences are evident for the most complex chaperonin, the eukaryotic cytosolic CCT, which highlights the uniqueness of this important molecular machine. © 2011 Elsevier Ltd.

Garcia-Amado M.,Autonomous University of Madrid | Prensa L.,Autonomous University of Madrid
PLoS ONE | Year: 2012

Cell number alterations in the amygdaloid complex (AC) might coincide with neurological and psychiatric pathologies with anxiety imbalances as well as with changes in brain functionality during aging. This stereological study focused on estimating, in samples from 7 control individuals aged 20 to 75 years old, the number and density of neurons, glia and endothelial cells in the entire AC and in its 5 nuclear groups (including the basolateral (BL), corticomedial and central groups), 5 nuclei and 13 nuclear subdivisions. The volume and total cell number in these territories were determined on Nissl-stained sections with the Cavalieri principle and the optical fractionator. The AC mean volume was 956 mm3 and mean cell numbers (x106) were: 15.3 neurons, 60 glial cells and 16.8 endothelial cells. The numbers of endothelial cells and neurons were similar in each AC region and were one fourth the number of glial cells. Analysis of the influence of the individuals' age at death on volume, cell number and density in each of these 24 AC regions suggested that aging does not affect regional size or the amount of glial cells, but that neuron and endothelial cell numbers respectively tended to decrease and increase in territories such as AC or BL. These accurate stereological measures of volume and total cell numbers and densities in the AC of control individuals could serve as appropriate reference values to evaluate subtle alterations in this structure in pathological conditions. © 2012 García -Amado, Prensa.

Cerdeno D.G.,Durham University | Peiro M.,Autonomous University of Madrid | Robles S.,Autonomous University of Madrid
Physical Review D - Particles, Fields, Gravitation and Cosmology | Year: 2015

We show that the right-handed (RH) sneutrino in the next-to-minimal supersymmetric standard model can account for the observed excess in the Fermi-LAT spectrum of gamma rays from the Galactic center, while fulfilling all the current experimental constraints from the LHC as well as from direct and indirect dark matter searches. We have explored the parameter space of this scenario, computed the gamma-ray spectrum for each phenomenologically viable solution and then performed a χ2 fit to the excess. Unlike previous studies based on model-independent interpretations, we have taken into account the full annihilation spectrum, without assuming pure annihilation channels. Furthermore, we have incorporated limits from direct detection experiments, LHC bounds and also the constraints from Fermi-LAT on dwarf spheroidal galaxies and gamma-ray spectral lines. In addition, we have estimated the effect of the most recent Fermi-LAT reprocessed data (pass 8). In general, we obtain good fits to the Galactic center excess (GCE) when the RH sneutrino annihilates mainly into pairs of light singletlike scalar or pseudoscalar Higgs bosons that subsequently decay in flight, producing four-body final states and spectral features that improve the goodness of the fit at large energies. The best fit (χ2=20.8) corresponds to a RH sneutrino with a mass of 64 GeV which annihilates preferentially into a pair of light singletlike pseudoscalar Higgs bosons (with masses of order 60 GeV). Besides, we have analyzed other channels that also provide good fits to the excess. Finally, we discuss the implications for direct and indirect detection searches paying special attention to the possible appearance of gamma-ray spectral features in near future Fermi-LAT analyses, as well as deviations from the Standard Model-like Higgs properties at the LHC. Remarkably, many of the scenarios that fit the GCE can also be probed by these other complementary techniques. © 2015 American Physical Society.

Blanco R.,Autonomous University of Madrid | Alarcon B.,Autonomous University of Madrid
Frontiers in Immunology | Year: 2012

Increasing evidence favors the notion that, before triggering, the T cell antigen receptor (TCR) forms nanometer-scale oligomers that are called nanoclusters. The organization of the TCR in pre-existing oligomers cannot be ignored when analyzing the properties of ligand (pMHC) recognition and signal transduction. As with other membrane receptors, the existence of TCR oligomers points out to cooperativity phenomena. We review the data in support of conformational changes in the TCR as the basic principle to transduce the activation signal to the cytoplasm and the incipient data suggesting cooperativity within nanoclusters. © 2012 Blanco and Alarcón.

Carmona L.,University of Cádiz | Pola M.,Autonomous University of Madrid | Gosliner T.M.,California Academy of Sciences | Cervera J.L.,University of Cádiz
PLoS ONE | Year: 2013

Aeolidida is one of the largest clades of nudibranchs with at least 560 known species. However, its systematics has not been studied in a comprehensive manner. Phylogenetic analyses of larger clades such as Nudibranchia or Cladobranchia have usually included a poor sample of aeolids. Furthermore, phylogenetic studies at the family or generic level in Aeolidida are a few and far between. The first molecular phylogeny of the aeolid family Aeolidiidae is presented here. This study, the most comprehensive for Aeolidida to date, uses new sequences of two mitochondrial (COI and 16S) genes and one nuclear gene (H3). 251 specimens from members of seven families of Aeolidida, including 39 species of Aeolidiidae were studied. Excluding Pleurolidia juliae, Aeolidiidae is monophyletic. Our results resolve the systematic relationships within the Aeolidiidae at a generic level, requiring changes in the systematics of this family. Spurilla, Anteaeolidiella, Limenandra and Aeolidia are well-supported and monophyletic clades. Aeolidiella stephanieae is transferred to Berghia and Aeolidiopsis ransoni and Spurilla salaamica to Baeolidia, to maintain the monophyletic lineages reflected in this study. The systematics of Cerberilla remains unclear. Some species earlier attributed to Aeolidiella are now grouped in a previously unnamed clade that we designate as Bulbaeolidia gen. nov. © 2013 Carmona et al.

Martinez-Galera A.J.,Autonomous University of Madrid | Gomez-Rodriguez J.M.,Autonomous University of Madrid
Journal of Physical Chemistry C | Year: 2011

Studying the behavior of organic molecules adsorbed on graphene is an issue of special importance to exploit the full potential of graphene in future technology. Here we report on a scanning tunneling microscopy study in ultrahigh vacuum of the surface diffusion and initial stages of growth of a simple organic molecule, the azabenzene 1,3,5-triazine, on epitaxial graphene on Pt(111) at low temperatures. Our study reveals the formation of fractal shape islands below 100 K; inside the islands, the molecules are arranged in a well-ordered hexagonal structure with the molecular plane parallel to the surface. The orientation of the molecules in this lattice is determined by the interpretation of STM images exhibiting intramolecular features via the electrostatic potential map of the 1,3,5-triazine molecule. From nucleation experiments we have measured, for the first time, the diffusion barrier for single molecules adsorbed on the graphene/Pt(111) surface. This energy barrier (68 ± 9 meV) is higher than that previously found for 1,3,5-triazine on graphite surfaces. This important finding shows that even on the graphene/Pt(111) system, which is one of the most weakly coupled graphene-metal systems, dynamic processes such as surface diffusion, which is a fundamental process involved in the growth of monolayers of organic molecules, is affected by the interaction of graphene with the underlying metal. © 2011 American Chemical Society.

Martinez-Galera A.J.,Autonomous University of Madrid | Gomez-Rodriguez J.M.,Autonomous University of Madrid
Journal of Physical Chemistry C | Year: 2011

We report on research performed by using scanning tunneling microscopy (STM) during the first stages of nucleation and growth of a prototype azabenzene, 1,3,5-triazine, on highly oriented pyrolitic graphite (HOPG) surfaces at low temperatures under ultrahigh vacuum conditions. This work reveals the formation at temperatures below 100 K of two-dimensional fractal shape islands of 1,3,5-triazine where the molecules are ordered in an hexagonal lattice. By using nucleation theory on well-controlled experiments, where sample temperature and deposition rate were alternatively changed, we have extracted important parameters such as the critical nucleus size (equal to one) and the energy barrier for single molecule diffusion (Ed = 55 ± 8 meV). This energy barrier, though low enough to be considered the result of a weak molecule-substrate interaction corresponding to a physisorption process, is much higher than the one obtained very recently for the benzene-graphite system [Hedgeland, H.; et al. Nat. Phys.2009, 5, 561]. This comparison suggests that the presence of the nitrogen atoms on the heterocycle of azabenzenes can lead to a substantial gain on the bonding energy with respect to pure benzenic systems. © 2011 American Chemical Society.

Gonzalez-Tudela A.,Autonomous University of Madrid | Porras D.,Complutense University of Madrid
Physical Review Letters | Year: 2013

Implementations of solid-state quantum optics provide us with devices where qubits are placed at fixed positions in photonic or plasmonic one-dimensional waveguides. We show that solely by controlling the position of the qubits and with the help of a coherent driving, collective spontaneous decay may be engineered to yield an entangled mesoscopic steady state. Our scheme relies on the realization of pure superradiant Dicke models by a destructive interference that cancels dipole-dipole interactions in one dimension. © 2013 American Physical Society.

San-Jose P.,CSIC - Institute of Materials Science | Prada E.,Autonomous University of Madrid | Aguado R.,CSIC - Institute of Materials Science
Physical Review Letters | Year: 2014

We show that Josephson junctions made of multiband semiconductors with strong spin-orbit coupling carry a critical supercurrent Ic that contains information about the nontrivial topology of the system. In particular, we find that the emergence and annihilation of Majorana bound states in the junction is reflected in strong even-odd effects in Ic at small junction transparency. This effect allows for a mapping between Ic and the topological phase diagram of the junction, thus providing a dc measurement of its topology. © 2014 American Physical Society.

Ardura J.A.,Instituto Of Investigacion Sanitaria Iis Fundacion Jimenez Diaz | Sanz A.B.,Nefrologia | Ortiz A.,Autonomous University of Madrid | Esbrit P.,Instituto Of Investigacion Sanitaria Iis Fundacion Jimenez Diaz
Kidney International | Year: 2013

Runx2 is a key transcription factor in bone development regulating several processes, including osteoblast apoptosis. The antiapoptotic effects of parathyroid hormone (PTH) in osteoblasts depend on Runx2-mediated transcription of prosurvival genes. In the kidney, PTH-related protein (PTHrP) promotes tubulointerstitial cell survival by activating the PTH/PTHrP type 1 receptor. We found that Runx2 is expressed in renal tubuloepithelial MCT and HK2 cell lines in vitro and in the mouse kidney tubuloepithelium in vivo. The 1-36 amino-acid fragment of PTHrP was found to increase the expression and nuclear translocation of Runx2 in both cell lines in a dose-and time-dependent manner. PTHrP(1-36) protected renal tubuloepithelial cells from folic acid toxicity and serum deprivation, an effect inhibited by a dominant-negative Runx2 construct or a Runx2 siRNA. Furthermore, PTHrP(1-36) upregulated the antiapoptotic proteins Bcl-2 and osteopontin, and these effects were abolished by Runx2 siRNA. Runx2, osteopontin, and Bcl-2 were increased in tubuloepithelial cells from transgenic mice with PTHrP overexpression and in wild-type mice with acute or chronic renal failure. Thus, PTHrP regulates renal tubuloepithelial cell survival via Runx2 in the mammalian kidney. © 2013 International Society of Nephrology.

Franco S.,Durham University | Galloni D.,Durham University | Retolaza A.,Autonomous University of Madrid | Uranga A.,Autonomous University of Madrid
Journal of High Energy Physics | Year: 2015

Recent models of axion monodromy inflation in string theory link the inflationary potential and the moduli stabilization potential. Realistic inflationary models require mechanisms to moderately suppress the inflaton mass with respect to the moduli stabilization scale. In this paper we explore the realization of this idea using warped throats, whose redshifted infrared region supports the inflaton mode. The inflaton potential and its monodromy arise from couplings to the fluxes supporting the throat. We provide explicit realizations of such throats in type IIB with NSNS and RR 3-form field strength fluxes, and in type IIA with RR 2-form fluxes. Once embedded in a global CY, these systems would provide a mechanism to realize chaotic inflation at scales parametrically suppressed with respect to bulk physics. The construction of the throats is systematically carried out using geometric transitions in systems of D-branes at singularities, whose properties and dynamics are efficiently encoded using dimer diagrams. The holographic dual of the axion monodromy is a quasi-periodic chain of Seiberg dualities. © 2015, The Author(s).

Delga A.,Autonomous University of Madrid | Feist J.,Autonomous University of Madrid | Bravo-Abad J.,Autonomous University of Madrid | Garcia-Vidal F.J.,Autonomous University of Madrid
Physical Review Letters | Year: 2014

We investigate the interplay between quenching and strong coupling in systems that include a collection of quantum emitters interacting with a metal nanoparticle. By using detailed numerical simulations and analytical modeling, we demonstrate that quantum emitters can exhibit strong coupling with the particle dipole resonance at distances at which the quenching to nonradiative channels is expected to dominate the dynamics. These results can be accounted for in terms of the pseudomode character of the higher multipole modes of the nanoparticle and the corresponding reduction of the induced loss rate. These findings expand the current understanding of light-matter interaction in plasmonic systems and could contribute to the development of novel quantum plasmonic platforms. © 2014 American Physical Society.

Hentschinski M.,Brookhaven National Laboratory | Vera A.S.,Autonomous University of Madrid | Vera A.S.,CERN | Salas C.,Autonomous University of Madrid | Salas C.,CERN
Physical Review Letters | Year: 2013

We show that it is possible to describe the effective Pomeron intercept, determined from the HERA deep inelastic scattering data at small values of Bjorken x, by using next-to-leading order Balitsky-Fadin-Kuraev-Lipatov evolution together with collinear improvements. To obtain a good description over the whole range of Q2, we use a non-Abelian physical renormalization scheme with the Brodsky-Lepage-Mackenzie optimal scale, combined with a parametrization of the running coupling in the infrared region. © 2013 American Physical Society.

Gonzalez-Gonzalez A.,CSIC - Institute of Materials Science | Polop C.,Autonomous University of Madrid | Vasco E.,CSIC - Institute of Materials Science
Physical Review Letters | Year: 2013

The growth stress generated once grains coalesce in Volmer-Weber-type thin films is investigated by time-multiscale simulations comprising complementary modules of (i) finite-element modeling to address the interactions between grains happening at atomic vibration time scales (∼0.1 ps), (ii) dynamic scaling to account for the surface stress relaxation via morphology changes at surface diffusion time scales (∼μs-ms), and (iii) the mesoscopic rate equation approach to simulate the bulk stress relaxation at deposition time scales (h). On the basis of addressing the main experimental evidence reported so far on the topic dealt with, the simulation results provide key findings concerning the interplay between anisotropic grain interactions at complementary space scales, deposition conditions (such as flux and mobility), and mechanisms of stress accommodation-relaxation, which underlies the origin, nature and spatial distribution, and the flux dependence of the postcoalescence growth stress. © 2013 American Physical Society.

Papadimitriou I.,Autonomous University of Madrid | Taliotis A.,Vrije Universiteit Brussel
Journal of High Energy Physics | Year: 2014

Any second order homogeneous linear ordinary differential equation can be transformed into a first order non-linear Riccati equation. We argue that the Riccati form of the linearized fluctuation equations that determine the holographic 2-point functions simplifies considerably the numerical computation of such 2-point functions and of the corresponding transport coefficients by computing directly the response functions, eliminating the arbitrary source from the start. Moreover, it provides a neat criterion for the infrared regularity of the fluctuations. In particular, it is shown that the infrared regularity conditions for scalar and tensor fluctuations coincide, and hence they are either both regular or both singular. We demonstrate our numerical recipe based on the Riccati equations by computing the holographic 2-point functions for the stress tensor and a scalar operator in a number of asymptotically anti de Sitter backgrounds of bottom up scalar-gravity models. Analytical results are obtained for the 2-point function of the transverse traceless part of the stress tensor in two confining geometries, including a geometry that belongs to the class of IHQCD. We find that in this background the spin-2 spectrum is linear and, as expected, the position space 2-point function decays exponentially at large distances at a rate proportional to the confinement scale. © The Authors.

Bernal J.,Autonomous University of Madrid | Morte B.,Center for Biomedical Research on Rare Diseases
Biochimica et Biophysica Acta - General Subjects | Year: 2013

Background: The transcriptional activity of the thyroid hormone receptors is modulated by the ligand, T3, but they have also activity as aporeceptors, in the unliganded state. Aporeceptor activity is thought to contribute to the severity of profound hypothyroidism. During development thyroid hormone receptors are expressed before onset of thyroid gland function and are present therefore in many tissues mainly as aporeceptors. The question we address is whether thyroid hormone aporeceptors are involved in physiological and/or developmental processes. Scope of review: The scope of this article is to review the evidence for a role of thyroid hormone aporeceptors in physiology and development. Related to this topic is the activity of mutant receptors unable to bind hormone. These receptors usually have dominant negative activity. This review focuses on the wild type receptors, and does not discuss the properties of mutant receptors. Major conclusions: Unliganded thyroid hormone receptors influence the timing and control certain aspects of amphibian pre-metamorphosis. In mammals they are likely to influence maturational processes in the brain and other organs before onset of thyroid gland function. Expression of types 2 and 3 deiodinases which control the local tissue concentration of T3 regulates the fractional receptor occupancy and therefore the relative proportion of aporeceptors. This article is part of a Special Issue entitled Thyroid hormone signalling. © 2012 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

Pascual A.,Autonomous University of Madrid | Aranda A.,Autonomous University of Madrid
Biochimica et Biophysica Acta - General Subjects | Year: 2013

Background: Tissue homeostasis depends on the balance between cell proliferation and differentiation. Thyroid hormones (THs), through binding to their nuclear receptors, can regulate the expression of many genes involved in cell cycle control and cellular differentiation. This can occur by direct transcriptional regulation or by modulation of the activity of different signaling pathways. Scope of review: In this review we will summarize the role of the different receptor isoforms in growth and maturation of selected tissues and organs. We will focus on mammalian tissues, and therefore we will not address the fundamental role of the THs during amphibian metamorphosis. Major conclusions: The actions of THs are highly pleiotropic, affecting many tissues at different developmental stages. As a consequence, their effects on proliferation and differentiation are highly heterogeneous depending on the cell type, the cellular context, and the developmental or transformation status. Both during development and in the adult, stem cells are essential for proper organ formation, maintenance and regeneration. Recent evidence suggests that some of the actions of the thyroid hormone receptors could be secondary to regulation of stem/progenitor cell function. Here we will also include the latest knowledge on the role of these receptors in proliferation and differentiation of embryonic and adult stem cells. General significance: The thyroid hormone receptors are potent regulators of proliferation and differentiation of many cell types. This can explain the important role of the thyroid hormones and their receptors in key processes such as growth, development, tissue homeostasis or cancer. This article is part of a Special Issue entitled Thyroid hormone signalling. © 2012 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

Marchetti F.M.,Autonomous University of Madrid | Keeling J.,University of St. Andrews
Physical Review Letters | Year: 2014

We consider the possible phases of microcavity polaritons tuned near a bipolariton Feshbach resonance. We show that, as well as the regular polariton superfluid phase, a "molecular" superfluid exists, with (quasi-)long-range order only for pairs of polaritons. We describe the experimental signatures of this state. Using variational approaches we find the phase diagram (critical temperature, density, and exciton-photon detuning). Unlike for ultracold atoms, the molecular superfluid is not inherently unstable, and our phase diagram suggests it is attainable in current experiments. © 2014 American Physical Society.

Stauber T.,Autonomous University of Madrid | Gomez-Santos G.,Autonomous University of Madrid | De Abajo F.J.G.,ICFO - Institute of Photonic Sciences | De Abajo F.J.G.,Catalan Institution for Research and Advanced Studies
Physical Review Letters | Year: 2014

We theoretically study absorption by an undoped graphene layer decorated with arrays of small particles. We discuss periodic and random arrays within a common formalism, which predicts a maximum absorption of 50% for suspended graphene in both cases. The limits of weak and strong scatterers are investigated, and an unusual dependence on particle-graphene separation is found and explained in terms of the effective number of contributing evanescent diffraction orders of the array. Our results can be important to boost absorption by single-layer graphene due to its simple setup with potential applications to light harvesting and photodetection based on energy (Förster) rather than charge transfer. © 2014 American Physical Society.

Masjuan P.,Johannes Gutenberg University Mainz | Sanz-Cillero J.J.,Autonomous University of Madrid
European Physical Journal C | Year: 2013

Based on the mathematically well defined Padé theory, a theoretically safe new procedure for the extraction of the pole mass and width of a resonance is proposed. In particular, thanks to the Montessus de Ballore theorem we are able to unfold the second Riemann sheet of an amplitude to search for the position of the resonance pole in the complex plane. The method is systematic and provides a model-independent treatment of the prediction and the corresponding errors of the approximation. Likewise, it can be used in combination with other well-established approaches to improve future determinations of resonance parameters. © 2013 Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg and Società Italiana di Fisica.

Rodriguez-Merchan E.C.,La Paz University Hospital | Rodriguez-Merchan E.C.,Autonomous University of Madrid
Blood Coagulation and Fibrinolysis | Year: 2012

Intra-articular bleeding affects the metabolism and repair of articular cartilage. Biomechanical data have shown that blood causes harmful effects on overall cartilage function under loading conditions. Therefore, haemophilic patients suffering a haemarthrosis should be subjected to blood aspiration (arthrocentesis) to prevent cartilage damage. MRI and ultrasonography have shown themselves to be excellent noninvasive tools for the evaluation of early cartilage damage that remains undetectable by conventional radiography in haemophilic patients. Prophylaxis with the deficient factor can prevent cartilage deterioration and reduce the incidence of joint haemorrhage in children with haemophilia. Radiosynovectomy has proved to be a highly effective procedure to decrease both the frequency and the severity of recurrent intra-articular bleeding episodes. Nowadays, the most usual surgical procedures for treating articular cartilage defects (cartilage repair) include abrasion chondroplasty, microfracture, mosaicplasty, autologous chondrocyte implantation (ACI), and matrix-induced ACI. In small defects (<2-4 cm), ostechondral autograft or microfracture are the recommended options. In large defects (>2-4 cm), ACI or osteochondral allograft are indicated. However, these techniques have not been applied in haemophilic patients because inflammatory conditions and advanced degenerative change (>50% joint space narrowing) are contraindications for cartilage repair. Thus, prevention of cartilage damage is paramount in haemophilia. The definitive remedy for advanced cartilage damage is either (knee or hip) replacement or (ankle) arthrodesis. Primary prophylaxis and radiosynovectomy are the best alternatives at our disposal to protect our patients against cartilage damage and arthropathy in haemophilic joints. © 2012 Wolters Kluwer Health | Lippincott Williams & Wilkins.

Del Mar Alonso-Almeida M.,Autonomous University of Madrid
Journal of Cleaner Production | Year: 2013

The tourist industry can only operate with adequate energy, water and waste management facilities. This work analyzes the perceptions among university students attending tourism degree courses of the most important responsibilities in this respect for companies operating in the tourist sector, and examines the adoption of environmental practices by companies from a gender perspective. A survey was conducted involving 197 tourism students and 409 restaurant managers. The ANOVA method was used to identify differences. The findings show that in the case of both the group of students and the group of managers, women are more concerned about environmental management than men. The results provide new evidence relating to tourism education and eco-feminist theories.© 2012 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

Bernal J.,Autonomous University of Madrid | Bernal J.,Center for Biomedical Research on Rare Diseases
Current Opinion in Endocrinology, Diabetes and Obesity | Year: 2011

Purpose of Review: To discuss the recent advances on thyroid hormone transport in the brain. A special attention is paid to the X-linked thyroid hormone cell transport (THCT) defect (also known as the Allan-Herndon-Dudley syndrome), caused by mutations of the specific thyroid hormone transporter MCT8 gene. Recent Findings: MCT8 is involved in thyroid hormone transport in the brain. MRI of patients with THCT defect showed myelination delays, probably related to impaired thyroid hormone action on oligodendrocytes. MCT8 is also expressed in the thyroid and has an important role in thyroid hormone secretion. The altered circulating concentrations of thyroid hormone in the patients are partly because of impaired secretion and altered peripheral metabolism. Increased deiodinase activity is important in the pathophysiology of the syndrome. High D1 activity in liver and kidney increases T4 and r T3 deiodination, and contributes to the increased serum T3. High D2 activity in the brain contributes to compensate the deficient T3 transport by increasing local T3 production. Summary: Patients with suspected X-linked leukoencephalopathy should be screened for MCT8 gene mutations. Research on the brain pathophysiology of the THCT defect should focus on the specific role of Mct8 on oligodendrocytes and myelination. Copyright © Lippincott Williams & Wilkins.

Salvio A.,Autonomous University of Madrid | Mazumdar A.,Lancaster University | Mazumdar A.,Durham University
Physics Letters, Section B: Nuclear, Elementary Particle and High-Energy Physics | Year: 2015

We investigate whether Higgs inflation can occur in the Standard Model starting from natural initial conditions or not. The Higgs has a non-minimal coupling to the Ricci scalar. We confine our attention to the regime where quantum Einstein gravity effects are small in order to have results that are independent of the ultraviolet completion of gravity. At the classical level we find no tuning is required to have successful Higgs inflation, provided the initial homogeneity condition is satisfied. On the other hand, at the quantum level we obtain that the renormalization for large non-minimal coupling requires an additional degree of freedom, unless a tuning of the initial values of the running parameters is made. In order to see that this effect may change the predictions we finally include such degree of freedom in the field content and show that Starobinsky's R2 inflation dominates over Higgs inflation. © 2015 The Authors.

Berasaluce-Gonzalez M.,Autonomous University of Madrid | Ramirez G.,Autonomous University of Madrid | Uranga A.M.,Autonomous University of Madrid
Journal of High Energy Physics | Year: 2014

We consider discrete gauge symmetries in D dimensions arising as remnants of broken continuous gauge symmetries carried by general antisymmetric tensor fields, rather than by standard 1-forms. The lagrangian for such a general Z p gauge theory can be described in terms of a r-form gauge field made massive by a (r - 1)-form, or other dual realizations, that we also discuss. The theory contains charged topological defects of different dimensionalities, generalizing the familiar charged particles and strings in D = 4. We describe realizations in string theory compactifications with torsion cycles, or with background field strength fluxes. We also provide examples of non-abelian discrete groups, for which the group elements are associated with charged objects of different dimensionality. © 2014 Author(s).

Franco S.,Durham University | Uranga A.,Autonomous University of Madrid
Journal of High Energy Physics | Year: 2014

We develop tools for determining the gauge theory resulting from a configuration of Type IIB D3-branes probing a non-compact, toric Calabi-Yau 3-fold, in the presence of additional flavor D7-branes with general embeddings. Two main ingredients of our approach are dimer models and mirror symmetry. D7-branes with general embeddings are obtained by recombination of elementary D7-brane constituents. These tools are then used to engineer a large set of Bipartite Field Theories, a class of 4d, N = 1 quantum field theories defined by bipartite graphs on bordered Riemann surfaces. Several explicit examples, including infinite families of models, associated to both planar and non-planar graphs are presented. © The Authors.

Gonzalez-Garcia M.C.,University of Barcelona | Gonzalez-Garcia M.C.,State University of New York at Stony Brook | Maltoni M.,Autonomous University of Madrid | Schwetz T.,The Oskar Klein Center
Journal of High Energy Physics | Year: 2014

Abstract: We present a global analysis of solar, atmospheric, reactor and accelerator neutrino data in the framework of three-neutrino oscillations based on data available in summer 2014. We provide the allowed ranges of the six oscillation parameters and show that their determination is stable with respect to uncertainties related to reactor neutrino and solar neutrino flux predictions. We find that the maximal possible value of the Jarlskog invariant in the lepton sector is 0.033 ±0.010 (±0.027) at the 1σ (3σ) level and we use leptonic unitarity triangles to illustrate the ability of global oscillation data to obtain information on CP violation. We discuss “tendencies and tensions” of the global fit related to the octant of θ23 as well as the CP violating phase δCP. The favored values of δCP are around 3π/2 while values around π/2 are disfavored at about Δχ2 ≃6. We comment on the non-trivial task to assign a confidence level to this Δχ2 value by performing a Monte Carlo study of T2K data. © 2014, The Author(s).

Perez-Castaneda T.,Autonomous University of Madrid | Jimenez-Rioboo R.J.,CSIC - Institute of Materials Science | Ramos M.A.,Autonomous University of Madrid
Physical Review Letters | Year: 2014

The two most prominent and ubiquitous features of glasses at low temperatures, namely the presence of tunneling two-level systems and the so-called boson peak in the reduced vibrational density of states, are shown to persist essentially unchanged in highly stabilized glasses, contrary to what was usually envisaged. Specifically, we have measured the specific heat of 110 million-year-old amber samples from El Soplao (Spain), both at very low temperatures and around the glass transition Tg. In particular, the amount of two-level systems, assessed at the lowest temperatures, was surprisingly found to be exactly the same for the pristine hyperaged amber as for the, subsequently, partially and fully rejuvenated samples. © 2014 American Physical Society.

Jimenez-Alba A.,Autonomous University of Madrid | Melgar L.,Autonomous University of Madrid
Journal of High Energy Physics | Year: 2014

We study anomalous conductivities in Chiral Superfluids in the framework of two different holographic models, by means of Kubo formulae. In addition, we point out the existence of an anomalous transport phenomenon that consists in the presence of a charge density when the superfluid velocity is aligned with a magnetic field. It has been pointed out recently that certain chiral conductivities in holographic superfluids exhibit universal behavior at zero temperature. We show that anomalous conductivities always stabilize at low temperatures in our setup. Even though the particular value they acquire is model-dependent, it seems to be robust and determined solely by the interplay between the broken symmetries and the anomalies. © The Authors.

Rodriguez-Merchan E.C.,La Paz University Hospital | Rodriguez-Merchan E.C.,Autonomous University of Madrid
Blood Coagulation and Fibrinolysis | Year: 2012

The rate of infection following primary total knee arthroplasty (TKA) in the general population is 1% on average. However, in persons with haemophilia (PWH), the mean rate of infection following primary TKA is nearly 8%. Questions: why is the infection rate higher in persons with haemophilia compared with the general population? what should be done to correct this? A PubMed (MEDLINE) search and a Cochrane Library search were performed. The most important articles as judged by the author were selected for this review. The main criteria for selection were that the articles addressed the prevention of infection in PWH undergoing TKA. Patient-related risk factors predisposing to postoperative infection in the general population include immunodepression and previous infection in the knee. Methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) is the most common organism in infected TKAs. Systematic preoperative screening by swab is very important. Prevention of MRSA-positive cases by means of nasal decontamination (mupirocin 3 days) is advisable. Preoperative antibiotic prophylaxis has shown itself to be an efficient method to lower infection rates. Operating theatres ideally should be equipped with laminar flow. In PWH, there are three additional risk factors: insufficient haemostasis, HIV-positive status, and central venous catheters (CVCs). Implementing the preventive measures for the general population and a sufficient level of clotting factor for 2-3 weeks can help diminish the infection in PWH undergoing TKA. In HIV-positive patients with CD4 count less than 200?cells/μl , early, vigorous treatment should be instituted for suspected infection and surgical intervention individualized based on the balance of risks and benefits. Strict adherence to handwashing and aseptic technique are essential elements of catheter care. Caregiver education is an integral part of CVC use and the procedural practices of users should be regularly reassessed. If TKA is contraindicated, arthroscopic knee joint debridement can relieve pain for several years and delay the need for TKA. © 2012 Wolters Kluwer Health.

Franceschini R.,University of Maryland University College | Torre R.,Autonomous University of Madrid | Torre R.,University of Padua | Torre R.,International School for Advanced Studies
European Physical Journal C | Year: 2013

We study the 8 TeV LHC reach on pair produced heavy flavored di-jet resonances. Motivated by theories of R-parity violation in supersymmetry we concentrate on a final state with two b-jets and two light jets. We exploit b-tagging to reject the background and discuss its importance at the trigger level to probe light stops. We present kinematical selections that can be used to isolate the signal as a bump in the mass distribution of the candidate resonances. We find that stops with R-parity violating couplings giving rise to fully hadronic final states can be observed in the current run of the LHC. Remarkably, the LHC can probe stop masses well within the range predicted by naturalness. © 2013 Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg and Società Italiana di Fisica.

Martinez-Fernandez L.,Autonomous University of Madrid | Corral I.,Autonomous University of Madrid | Granucci G.,University of Pisa | Persico M.,University of Pisa
Chemical Science | Year: 2014

In this paper we simulate the deactivation dynamics of photoexcited 6-thioguanine, a cytotoxic analogue of the canonical DNA/RNA base guanine, using a direct surface hopping dynamics approach. Our aim is to investigate the mechanism for triplet population, which was found to take place on a similar time scale as internal conversion. The surface hopping calculations were based on potential energy surfaces and couplings obtained on the fly using a semiempirical Hamiltonian, reparameterized on accurate ab initio data. We show that for the full description of the deactivation dynamics of 6-thioguanine, it is important to take into account both the dynamic and the spin-orbit couplings. The main deactivation pathway involves the sequence of ultrafast radiationless transitions S2 → S1 → T2 → T1. The very efficient population and long lifetime of the final T1 state, from where singlet oxygen is generated, would explain the high phototoxicity of the nucleotides of 6-thioguanine in DNA. To our knowledge, this is the first nonadiabatic dynamics simulation for a system showing strong spin-orbit couplings (due to the presence of a third row atom, sulfur) and a complex pattern of intermultiplet crossings. © 2014 The Royal Society of Chemistry.

A-Gonzalez N.,University of Las Palmas de Gran Canaria | Castrillo A.,Autonomous University of Madrid | Castrillo A.,University of Las Palmas de Gran Canaria
Biochimica et Biophysica Acta - Molecular Basis of Disease | Year: 2011

The liver X receptors (LXRα and LXRβ) are members of the nuclear receptor family of transcription factors that play essential roles in the transcriptional control of lipid metabolism. LXRs are endogenously activated by modified forms of cholesterol known as oxysterols and control the expression of genes important for cholesterol uptake, efflux, transport, and excretion in multiple tissues. In addition to their role as cholesterol sensors, a number of studies have implicated LXRs in the modulation of innate and adaptive immune responses. Both through activation and repression mechanisms, LXRs regulate diverse aspects of inflammatory gene expression in macrophages. The ability of LXRs to coordinate metabolic and immune responses constitutes an attractive therapeutic target for the treatment of chronic inflammatory disorders. This article is part of a Special Issue entitled: Translating nuclear receptors from health to disease. © 2011 Elsevier B.V.

Gradilla A.-C.,Autonomous University of Madrid | Guerrero I.,Autonomous University of Madrid
Cell and Tissue Research | Year: 2013

Cell-to-cell communication is vital for animal tissues and organs to develop and function as organized units. Throughout development, intercellular communication is crucial for the generation of structural diversity, mainly by the regulation of differentiation and growth. During these processes, several signaling molecules function as messengers between cells and are transported from producing to receptor cells. Thus, a tight spatial and temporal regulation of signaling transport is likely to be critical during morphogenesis. Despite much experimental and theoretical work, the question as to how these signals move between cells remains. Cell-to-cell contact is probably the most precise spatial and temporal mechanism for the transference of signaling molecules from the producing to the receiving cells. However, most of these molecules can also function at a distance between cells that are not juxtaposed. Recent research has shown the way in which cells may achieve direct physical contact and communication through actin-based filopodia. In addition, increasing evidence is revealing the role of such filopodia in regulating spatial patterning during development; in this context, the filopodia are referred to as cytonemes. In this review, we highlight recent work concerning the roles of these filopodia in cell signaling during development. The processes that initiate and regulate the formation, orientation and dynamics of cytonemes are poorly understood but are potentially extremely important areas for our knowledge of intercellular communication. © 2013 Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg.

Sabater C.,University of Alicante | Gosalbez-Martinez D.,University of Alicante | Fernandez-Rossier J.,International Iberian Nanotechnology Laboratory | Rodrigo J.G.,Autonomous University of Madrid | And 2 more authors.
Physical Review Letters | Year: 2013

We report electrical conductance measurements of Bi nanocontacts created by repeated tip-surface indentation using a scanning tunneling microscope at temperatures of 4 and 300 K. As a function of the elongation of the nanocontact, we measure robust, tens of nanometers long plateaus of conductance G 0=2e2/h at room temperature. This observation can be accounted for by the mechanical exfoliation of a Bi(111) bilayer, a predicted quantum spin Hall (QSH) insulator, in the retracing process following a tip-surface contact. The formation of the bilayer is further supported by the additional observation of conductance steps below G0 before breakup at both temperatures. Our finding provides the first experimental evidence of the possibility of mechanical exfoliation of Bi bilayers, the existence of the QSH phase in a two-dimensional crystal, and, most importantly, the observation of the QSH phase at room temperature. © 2013 American Physical Society.

Mesas A.E.,Autonomous University of Madrid | Leon-Munoz L.M.,Autonomous University of Madrid | Rodriguez-Artalejo F.,Autonomous University of Madrid | Lopez-Garcia E.,Autonomous University of Madrid
American Journal of Clinical Nutrition | Year: 2011

Background: The effect of coffee and caffeine on blood pressure (BP) and cardiovascular disease (CVD) in hypertensive persons is uncertain. Objective: The objective was to summarize the evidence on the acute and longer-term effects of caffeine and coffee intake on BP and on the association between habitual coffee consumption and risk of CVD in hypertensive individuals. Design: A systematic review and meta-analysis of publications identified in a PubMed and EMBASE search up to 30 April 2011 was undertaken. Data were extracted from controlled trials on the effect of caffeine or coffee intake on BP change and from cohort studies on the association between habitual coffee consumption and CVD. Results: In 5 trials, the administration of 200-300 mg caffeine produced a mean increase of 8.1 mm Hg (95% CI: 5.7, 10.6 mm Hg) in systolic BP and of 5.7 mm Hg (95% CI: 4.1, 7.4 mm Hg) in diastolic BP. The increase in BP was observed in the first hour after caffeine intake and lasted ≥3 h. In 3 studies of the longer-term effect (2 wk) of coffee, no increase in BP was observed after coffee was compared with a caffeine-free diet or was compared with decaffeinated coffee. Last, 7 cohort studies found no evidence of an association between habitual coffee consumption and a higher risk of CVD. Conclusions: In hypertensive individuals, caffeine intake produces an acute increase in BP for ≥3 h. However, current evidence does not support an association between longer-term coffee consumption and increased BP or between habitual coffee consumption and an increased risk of CVD in hypertensive subjects. © 2011 American Society for Nutrition.

Gonzalez-Tudela A.,Autonomous University of Madrid | Huidobro P.A.,Autonomous University of Madrid | Martin-Moreno L.,University of Zaragoza | Tejedor C.,Autonomous University of Madrid | Garcia-Vidal F.J.,Autonomous University of Madrid
Physical Review Letters | Year: 2013

Here we present the theoretical foundation of the strong coupling phenomenon between quantum emitters and propagating surface plasmons observed in two-dimensional metal surfaces. For that purpose, we develop a quantum framework that accounts for the coherent coupling between emitters and surface plasmons and incorporates the presence of dissipation and dephasing. Our formalism is able to reveal the key physical mechanisms that explain the reported phenomenology and also determine the physical parameters that optimize the strong coupling. A discussion regarding the classical or quantum nature of this phenomenon is also presented. © 2013 American Physical Society.

Lenzi S.M.,University of Padua | Nowacki F.,University of Strasbourg | Poves A.,Autonomous University of Madrid | Sieja K.,University of Strasbourg
Physical Review C - Nuclear Physics | Year: 2010

We study the development of collectivity in the neutron-rich nuclei around N=40, where the experimental and theoretical evidence suggest a rapid shape change from the spherical to the rotational regime, in analogy to what happens at the island of inversion surrounding Na31. Theoretical calculations are performed within the interacting shell-model framework in a large valence space, based on a Ca48 core, which encompasses the full pf shell for the protons and the 0f5/2, 1p3/2, 1p1/2, 0g9/2, and 1d5/2 orbits for the neutrons. The effective interaction is based on a G matrix obtained from a realistic nucleon-nucleon potential whose monopole part is corrected empirically to produce effective single-particle energies compatible with the experimental data. We find a good agreement between the theoretical results and the available experimental data. We predict the onset of deformation at different neutron numbers for the various isotopic chains. The maximum collectivity occurs in the chromium isotopes where the large deformation regime already starts at N=38. The shell evolution responsible for the observed shape changes is discussed in detail, in parallel to the situation in the N=20 region. © 2010 The American Physical Society.

Catalan J.,Autonomous University of Madrid | Del Valle J.C.,Autonomous University of Madrid
Journal of Physical Chemistry B | Year: 2014

The UV-vis absorption spectroscopy for a series of selected symmetrical aromatic hydrocarbons, benzene, naphthalene, anthracene, 9,10- diphenylanthracene, perylene, and rubrene in the gas phase or in 2-methylbutane, shows the consistency of a new spectroscopic rule. From a thorough spectroscopic analysis with temperature variation (293-113 K) this rule states that "an aromatic molecule, on Franck-Condon excitation can hardly generate an excited electronic state with a lower polarizability than that of its ground electronic-state." We have not found any exceptions to this rule. © 2014 American Chemical Society.

Sanz-Bravo A.,Autonomous University of Madrid | Campos J.,Hospital Universitario Puerta Of Hierro Majadahonda | Mazariegos M.S.,Complutense University of Madrid | Lopez De Castro J.A.,Autonomous University of Madrid
Arthritis and Rheumatology | Year: 2015

Objective To characterize the alterations, as well as their mechanisms, induced in the HLA-B27-bound peptidome expressed in live cells by the natural ERAP1 polymorphisms predisposing to ankylosing spondylitis (AS): R528K and N575D/Q725R. Methods HLA-B27:05-bound peptides were isolated from 3 human lymphoid cell lines expressing distinct ERAP1 variants differing at residues 528 and/or 575/725. The high-performance liquid chromatography-fractionated peptide pools were compared by mass spectrometry based on identity of molecular mass and chromatographic retention time. The relative amount of each shared peptide in any given cell line pair was estimated from the respective ion peak intensities. Peptide sequencing was also carried out by mass spectrometry. Results HLA-B27-bound ligands predominant in the context of the ERAP1 variant with K528 collectively showed higher molecular mass, higher frequency of N-terminal residues resistant to ERAP1, and bulkier residues downstream of the N-terminus, relative to peptides predominant in the R528 context. None of these differences were observed with ERAP1 variants differing at positions 575/725, but not at residue 528. Neither R528K nor N575D/Q725R altered the mean length of B27:05-bound ligands. Conclusion The R528K, but not the N575D/Q725R, polymorphism alters the expression levels of many HLA-B27:05-bound peptides, depending on the susceptibility of their N-terminal residues to trimming and depending on the size of the amino acid side chains at multiple positions downstream of the N-terminus. The significant alterations in the B27:05 peptidome and the structural features of the peptides that determine their differential expression in distinct ERAP1 contexts account for the association of the R528K polymorphism with AS. Copyright © 2015 by the American College of Rheumatology.

Morales S.,Autonomous University of Madrid | Guijarro F.G.,Autonomous University of Madrid | Garcia Ruano J.L.,Autonomous University of Madrid | Cid M.B.,Autonomous University of Madrid
Journal of the American Chemical Society | Year: 2014

A general and efficient biomimetic method for the synthesis of aldimines from aldehydes and compounds bearing the NH2 group in the presence of pyrrolidine as a catalyst has been developed. These organocatalytic reactions, based on the application of the concept of nucleophilic catalysis, proceed with outstanding yields in the absence of acids and metals under simple conditions and minimum experimental manipulation. The method has been mainly applied to the synthesis of N-sulfinyl and N-sulfonyl imines, but its general validity has been proven with the preparation of representative N-phosphinoyl, N-alkyl, and N-aryl imines. These unprecedented reactions, which presumably occur via iminium activation without requiring acidic conditions, are an interesting and competitive alternative to the classical methods for preparing aldimines. © 2013 American Chemical Society.

Cantador I.,Autonomous University of Madrid | Castells P.,Autonomous University of Madrid
Computers in Human Behavior | Year: 2011

A Community of Interest is a specific type of Community of Practice. It is formed by a group of individuals who share a common interest or passion. These people exchange ideas and thoughts about the given passion. However, they are often not aware of their membership to the community, and they may know or care little about each other outside of this clique. This paper describes a proposal to automatically identify Communities of Interest from the tastes and preferences expressed by users in personal ontology-based profiles. The proposed strategy clusters those semantic profile components shared by the users, and according to the clusters found, several layers of interest networks are built. The social relations of these networks might then be used for different purposes. Specifically, we outline here how they can be used to model group profiles and make semantic content-based collaborative recommendations. © 2010 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

Vinagre M.,Autonomous University of Madrid | Munoz B.,Emden Leer University of Applied Sciences
Language Learning and Technology | Year: 2011

Recent studies illustrate the potential that intercultural telecollaborative exchanges entail for language development through the use of corrective feedback from collaborating partners (Kessler, 2009; Lee, 2008; Sauro, 2009; Ware & O'Dowd, 2008). We build on this growing body of research by presenting the findings of a three-month-long research project that explored the impact of peer feedback on the development of learner accuracy. Our aim was to study participants' attention to form and the relative effectiveness of error correction strategies. In order to do so, we organised an e-mail exchange between seventeen post-secondary learners of Spanish and German. Data consist of exchanges between the five dyads who completed the full three-month project. As suggested by Vinagre and Lera (2008), analysis of these data indicate that despite frequent use of error correction, the use of remediation led to a higher percentage of errors recycled and was more conducive to error recycling in later language production. © 2011.

Perez-Milans M.,Autonomous University of Madrid
Journal of Pragmatics | Year: 2011

This paper focuses on how students from China are institutionally constructed through everyday practice in a Madrid middle school, where three years' fieldwork was conducted as part of a wider research project. Particular attention is paid to the Welcome Programme at this school, a new educational measure intended for students from a migrant background to learn Spanish before they enter mainstream classes. Taking critical sociolinguistic ethnography as a theoretical/methodological/analytical framework, interactional, discursive, and ethnographic data are used to show (a) what social identities are (re)produced and challenged through school practices, in connection with the ideological framework of the modern nation-state; (b) how these practices contribute to legitimizing a particular distribution/valuation of cultural and linguistic resources within the contemporary Spanish educational system; (c) what the institutional consequences are for these Chinese newcomer students. © 2010 Elsevier B.V.

Andre M.,Polytechnic University José Antonio Echeverría | Baldoquin M.G.,Polytechnic University José Antonio Echeverría | Acuna S.T.,Autonomous University of Madrid
Information and Software Technology | Year: 2011

Context: Human resources play a critical role in software project success. However, people are still the least formalized factor in today's process models. Generally, people are assigned to roles and project teams are formed on the basis of project leaders' experience of people, constraints (e.g. availability) and skill requirements. Yet this process has to take multiple factors into account. Few works in the literature model this process. Most of these are informal proposals focusing on the individual assignment of people to project tasks and do not consider other aspects like team formation as a whole. Objective: In this paper we formulate a formal model for assigning human resources to software project teams. Additionally, we describe the key results of the knowledge management process enacted to output the elements of the model. Method: The model elements were identified using the Delphi expert consultation method and applying psychological tests. The proposed model was implemented in a software tool and validated on two software development organization assignment scenarios. Results: We built a formal model for the process of assigning human resources to software project teams. This model takes into account as many factors as possible and aids the assignment of individuals to project roles, as well as the formation of the team as a whole. We found that the rules that were identified to form software development project teams are useful. From the tests we found that model implementation was feasible (all the executions of the implemented problem-solving algorithms output feasible solutions in response times that can be considered as acceptable). Conclusion: Using the Delphi method we were able to propose software project roles and competences. Psychological tests and data mining tools identified useful rules for forming software project teams. These were used to build a formal model. This model was built into a tool that returns role assignments in acceptable response times. This decision support tool helps managers assign people to roles and to form teams. Using the tool, project leaders can flexibly evaluate different team make-ups, taking into account several factors, as well as different constraints and objectives. © 2010 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

Background: Cancer progression is caused by the sequential accumulation of mutations, but not all orders of accumulation are equally likely. When the fixation of some mutations depends on the presence of previous ones, identifying restrictions in the order of accumulation of mutations can lead to the discovery of therapeutic targets and diagnostic markers. The purpose of this study is to conduct a comprehensive comparison of the performance of all available methods to identify these restrictions from cross-sectional data. I used simulated data sets (where the true restrictions are known) but, in contrast to previous work, I embedded restrictions within evolutionary models of tumor progression that included passengers (mutations not responsible for the development of cancer, known to be very common). This allowed me to assess, for the first time, the effects of having to filter out passengers, of sampling schemes (when, how, and how many samples), and of deviations from order restrictions. Results: Poor choices of method, filtering, and sampling lead to large errors in all performance measures. Having to filter passengers lead to decreased performance, especially because true restrictions were missed. Overall, the best method for identifying order restrictions were Oncogenetic Trees, a fast and easy to use method that, although unable to recover dependencies of mutations on more than one mutation, showed good performance in most scenarios, superior to Conjunctive Bayesian Networks and Progression Networks. Single cell sampling provided no advantage, but sampling in the final stages of the disease vs. sampling at different stages had severe effects. Evolutionary model and deviations from order restrictions had major, and sometimes counterintuitive, interactions with other factors that affected performance. Conclusions: This paper provides practical recommendations for using these methods with experimental data. It also identifies key areas of future methodological work and, in particular, it shows that it is both possible and necessary to embed assumptions about order restrictions and the nature of driver status within evolutionary models of cancer progression to evaluate the performance of inferential approaches. © Diaz-Uriarte; licensee BioMed Central. 2015.

Diffusion coefficients of two mobile ions are computed from the conductivity variation with time of three In-rich chalcopyrite single crystals of the AB n-3In n1VI 2n system (AB=Cu and Ag and VI=Se or Te). The coefficients have similar values in the three compounds, higher than in chalcopyrite compounds (ABInSe 2) due to a higher number of (2V CuIn Cu) defect pairs in the lattice. In each compound, the potential across the sample or the current intensity, V m and I, can increase or decrease within time due to a change in the interface potential by the ion arrival, where the decrease could be explained by a charge decrease. Mobile ions arrive while others, with higher charge, should leave related to the formation or disappearance of (2V CuIn Cu) defect pairs. Compositional measurements confirm the motion of Cu ions and In antisites, In Cu, in the Cu sublattice. Therefore, these compounds are mixed ionic and electronic conductors, MIECs, with two mobile ions, where the electronic and ionic conductions are non-blocked and blocked in the metal/semiconductor interface respectively. An equivalent electrical circuit is proposed, extensible at MIECs with j mobile ions, where the interface potential is similar to the potential drop in the charge or discharge in the capacitor. The analysis of the total flux of ions due to diffusion, j diff, and to the action of electrical field, j drift, permits compute the number of ions, their diffusion coefficients and the change of the potential drop within time in the interface in compounds with several mobile ions. This electrical model is checked using the experimental data in the three single crystals in a computer program. To know different mobile ions in In-rich chalcopyrites and their diffusion coefficients will permit to understand and have mechanisms of control in solar cell fabrication based in chalcopyrite thin films. © 2012 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

Fernandez-Perez A.,Autonomous University of Madrid | Vallejo M.,Autonomous University of Madrid
Biochemical Journal | Year: 2014

Alterations in transcription factors expressed in insulin-producing islet β-cells generate pancreatic dysfunction leading to diabetes. The homeodomain transcription factor Alx3 (aristaless-like homeobox 3) expressed in pancreatic islets participates in the regulated expression of several islet genes, and its deficiency in mice leads to islet cell apoptosis and glucose intolerance. In the present study, we investigated the mechanisms that regulate expression of Alx3 in pancreatic islets at the transcriptional level. We found that the Alx3 promoter contains at least eight putative regulatory elements with an E-box consensus sequence, three of which were determined to be functional and required for Alx3 promoter activity by mutational analysis in transfected MIN6 β-cells. We determined that these E-box elements are recognized by the basic helix-loop-helix transcription factors USF1 (upstream stimulatory factor 1) and USF2. We also identified a highly conserved A-box in the Alx3 promoter that is recognized by the islet-specific transcription factor Pdx1 (pancreatic and duodenal homeobox 1). Pdx1-mediated transactivation of the Alx3 promoter requires the integrity of the three functional E-boxes and the co-operation with USF transcription factors bound to them. The results from the present study indicate that Pdx1 contributes to the transcriptional transactivation of Alx3 in pancreatic β-cells by acting in co-ordination with USF1 and USF2. © 2014 Biochemical Society.

Arranz A.,Autonomous University of Madrid
Applied Physics A: Materials Science and Processing | Year: 2012

The 3 keV O + 2 reactive ion beam mixing of Cr/X interfaces (X=Al or Si) has been used to synthesize Cr-based mixed oxide thin films. The kinetics of growth, composition, and electronic structure of those films has been studied using X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy, Auger electron spectroscopy, ultraviolet photoelectron spectroscopy, and factor analysis. Initially, for low ion doses, Cr 2O 3 species are formed. Later, with increasing the ion dose, Cr 2O 3 species are first transformed into Cr 3+-O-X species, and subsequently, those Cr 3+-O-X species are transformed into Cr 6+-O-X species. This sequential transformation, Cr 2O 3→Cr 3+-O-X→Cr 6+-O-X, is accompanied by a slight increase of the oxygen concentration and a decrease of the Cr/X ratio in the films formed leading to the synthesis of custom designed Cr-based mixed oxides. The changes observed in the valence band and Auger parameters further support the formation of Cr-X mixed oxide species. Angle resolved X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy shows that for low ion doses, when only Cr 2O 3 and Cr 3+-O-X species coexist, Cr 3+-O-X species are located nearer the surface than Cr 2O 3 species, whereas for higher ion doses, when only Cr 3+-O-X and Cr 6+-O-X species coexist, the Cr 6+-O-X species are those located nearer the surface. © 2012 Springer-Verlag.

Yepes G.,Autonomous University of Madrid | Gottlober S.,Leibniz Institute for Astrophysics Potsdam | Hoffman Y.,Hebrew University of Jerusalem
New Astronomy Reviews | Year: 2014

We review how dark matter is distributed in our local neighbourhood from an observational and theoretical perspective. We will start by describing first the dark matter halo of our own galaxy and in the Local Group. Then we proceed to describe the dark matter distribution in the more extended area known as the Local Universe. Depending on the nature of dark matter, numerical simulations predict different abundances of substructures in Local Group galaxies, in the number of void regions and the abundance of low rotational velocity galaxies in the Local Universe. By comparing these predictions with the most recent observations, strong constrains on the physical properties of the dark matter particles can be derived. We devote particular attention to the results from the Constrained Local UniversE Simulations (CLUES) project, a special set of simulations whose initial conditions are constrained by observational data from the Local Universe. The resulting simulations are designed to reproduce the observed structures in the nearby universe. The CLUES provides a numerical laboratory for simulating the Local Group of galaxies and exploring the physics of galaxy formation in an environment designed to follow the observed Local Universe. It has come of age as the numerical analogue of Near-Field Cosmology. © 2013 Elsevier B.V.

Arranz A.,Autonomous University of Madrid
Surface and Coatings Technology | Year: 2012

Nb- and Ta-based mixed nitrides have been grown by 3keVN 2 + nanoscale reactive ion beam mixing (IBM) of Nb/Si and Ta/Al interfaces. The kinetics of growth, composition and electronic structure of the films formed has been studied using X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy (XPS) and ultraviolet photoelectron spectroscopy (UPS). A similar reactive IBM kinetics of three stages has been found for both interfaces by means of factor analysis. In a first stage, a mixture of substoichiometric and stoichiometric nitride species are formed up to ion doses of ~1.5×10 16ions/cm 2. In a second stage, for ion doses up to ~5-6×10 16ions/cm 2, subtoichiometric nitride species are completely transformed into stoichiometric nitride species. Subsequently, in a third stage, stoichiometric nitride species are transformed progressively into mixed nitride species due to the strong intermixing taking place at the interfaces, in such a way that a transition from metallic to insulator behaviour is observed in the UPS valence band. This transformation is accompanied by changes in the nitrogen concentration and a decrease of the Nb/Si or Ta/Al ratio in the thin mixed nitride films formed leading to the synthesis of custom designed group V transition metal-based mixed nitrides. Angle resolved XPS shows that the composition of the films formed by reactive IBM is rather uniform in the near-surface region. Experimental results have been compared with Monte Carlo TRIDYN simulations, suggesting that, in addition to pure ballistic mechanisms, radiation enhanced diffusion effects and the reaction with nitrogen should be also taken into account to explain the reactive IBM of Nb/Si and Ta/Al interfaces. © 2012 Elsevier B.V.

Fresno M.,Autonomous University of Madrid | Alvarez R.,Autonomous University of Madrid | Cuesta N.,Autonomous University of Madrid
Archives of Physiology and Biochemistry | Year: 2011

Obesity is a highly prevalent health problem in Western countries that leads to many important diseases such as type 2 diabetes and metabolic syndrome being now considered an inflammatory chronic disease. Adipocytes are no longer considered passive cells storing fat since they are major producers of inflammatory cytokines during obesity. Adipocytes and macrophages share many biological properties including the synthesis of similar molecules regulating inflammation. Fatty acid levels are elevated in obesity and induce inflammatory pathways by yet a mostly unknown mechanism, leading to the development of insulin and leptin resistance. Recent studies suggest that these effects could be mediated through the activation of toll-like receptors (TLR). TLR signalling pathways might contribute to the development of obesity-associated insulin resistance, thus representing a connection between innate immunity and metabolism. Here, we summarize the recent evidence for the important role that TLRs play in adipose tissue, obesity and insulin resistance. © 2011 Informa UK, Ltd.

Ortega A.D.,Autonomous University of Madrid | Willers I.M.,Autonomous University of Madrid | Sala S.,Autonomous University of Madrid | Cuezva J.M.,Autonomous University of Madrid
Journal of Cell Science | Year: 2010

The post-transcriptional regulation of nuclear mRNAs that encode core components of mitochondria has relevant implications in cell physiology. The mRNA that encodes the catalytic subunit of the mitochondrial H+-ATP synthase subunit β (ATP5B, β-F1-ATPase) is localized in a large ribonucleoprotein (RNP) complex (β-F1-RNP), which is subjected to stringent translational control during development and the cell cycle, and in carcinogenesis. Because downregulation of β-F1-ATPase is a conserved feature of most prevalent human carcinomas, we have investigated the molecular composition of the human β-F1-RNP. By means of an improved affinity-chromatography procedure and protein sequencing we have identified nine RNA-binding proteins (RNABPs) of the β-F1-RNP. Immunoprecipitation assays of Ras-GAP SH3 binding protein 1 (G3BP1) and fluorescent in-situ hybridization of mRNA indicate a direct interaction of the endogenous G3BP1 with mRNA of β-F1-ATPase (β-F1 mRNA). RNA-bridged trimolecular fluorescence complementation (TriFC) assays confirm the interaction of G3BP1 with the 3′-UTR of β-F1 mRNA in cytoplasmic RNA-granules. Confocal and high-resolution immunoelectron-microscopy experiments suggest that the β-F1-RNP is sorted to the periphery of mitochondria. Molecular and functional studies indicate that the interaction of G3BP1 with β-F1 mRNA inhibits its translation at the initiation level, supporting a role for G3BP1 in the glycolytic switch that occurs in cancer.

De Lara J.,Autonomous University of Madrid
Lecture Notes in Computer Science (including subseries Lecture Notes in Artificial Intelligence and Lecture Notes in Bioinformatics) | Year: 2016

Models are the main assets of Model-Driven Engineering (MDE), and hence model transformations are essential to automate the model manipulations required by MDE. Different kinds of transformations are common in MDE, like in-place, model-to-model, or model-to-text. In all cases, their definition is based on the meta-models of the models to be manipulated. However, the proliferation of meta-models in MDE (e.g., in connection with Domain-Specific Languages, DSLs) complicates transformation reuse. This is so as transformations are defined for particular meta-models and are not applicable to other meta-models, even if they have some commonalities. Therefore, in order to facilitate the creation of DSL-based MDE solutions, flexible means to reuse transformations across heterogeneous meta-models are required. © Springer International Publishing Switzerland 2016.

Galocha B.,Autonomous University of Madrid | Galocha B.,Institute Salud Carlos III | Lopez De Castro J.A.,Autonomous University of Madrid
Journal of Biological Chemistry | Year: 2010

Molecular polymorphism influences the strong association of HLA-B27 with ankylosing spondylitis through an unknown mechanism. Natural subtypes and site-directed mutants were used to analyze the effect of altering the peptide-binding site of this molecule on its stability, interaction with tapasin, folding, and export. The disease-associated subtypes B*2705, B*2702, and B*2704 showed higher thermostability at 50°C than all other subtypes and mutants, except some mimicking B*2702 polymorphism. The lowest values were found among pocket B mutants, most of which interacted strongly with tapasin, but otherwise there was no correlation between thermostability and tapasin interaction. Mutants resulting in increased hydrophobicity frequently acquired their maximal thermostability faster than those with increased polarity, suggesting that this process is largely driven by the thermodynamics of peptide binding. Folding, export, and tendency to misfold were influenced by polymorphism all along the peptide-binding site and were not specifically dependent on any particular region or structural feature. Frequent uncoupling of thermostability, folding/misfolding, and export can be explained by the distinct effect of mutations on the acquisition of a folded conformation, the optimization rate of B27-peptide complexes, and their quality control in the endoplasmic reticulum, all of which largely depend on the ways in which mutations alter peptide binding, without excluding additional effects on interactions with tapasin or other proteins involved in folding and export. The similarity of the generally disease-associated B*2707 to nondisease-associated subtypes in all the features analyzed suggests that molecular properties other than antigen presentation may not currently explain the relationship between HLA-B27 polymorphism and ankylosing spondylitis. © 2010 by The American Society for Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, Inc.

Ortiz-Barahona A.,Autonomous University of Madrid | Villar D.,Autonomous University of Madrid | Pescador N.,Autonomous University of Madrid | Amigo J.,University of Santiago de Compostela | del Peso L.,Autonomous University of Madrid
Nucleic Acids Research | Year: 2010

The transcriptional response driven by Hypoxiainducible factor (HIF) is central to the adaptation to oxygen restriction. Hence, the complete identification of HIF targets is essential for understanding the cellular responses to hypoxia. Herein we describe a computational strategy based on the combination of phylogenetic footprinting and transcription profiling meta-analysis for the identification of HIF-target genes. Comparison of the resulting candidates with published HIF1a genome-wide chromatin immunoprecipitation indicates a high sensitivity (78%) and specificity (97.8%). To validate our strategy, we performed HIF1a chromatin immunoprecipitation on a set of putative targets. Our results confirm the robustness of the computational strategy in predicting HIFbinding sites and reveal several novel HIF targets, including RE1-silencing transcription factor co-repressor (RCOR2). In addition, mapping of described polymorphisms to the predicted HIF-binding sites identified several singlenucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) that could alter HIF binding. As a proof of principle, we demonstrate that SNP rs17004038, mapping to a functional hypoxia response element in the macrophage migration inhibitory factor (MIF) locus, prevents induction of this gene by hypoxia. Altogether, ourresults show that the proposed strategy is a powerful tool for the identification of HIF direct targets that expands our knowledge of the cellular adaptation to hypoxia and provides cues on the inter-individual variation in this response. © The Author(s) 2010. Published by Oxford University Press.

Kroes G.-J.,Leiden University | Diaz C.,Autonomous University of Madrid
Chemical Society Reviews | Year: 2016

We review the state-of-the art in dynamics calculations on the reactive scattering of H2 from metal surfaces, which is an important model system of an elementary reaction that is relevant to heterogeneous catalysis. In many applications, quantum dynamics and classical trajectory calculations are performed within the Born-Oppenheimer static surface model. However, ab initio molecular dynamics (AIMD) is finding increased use in applications aimed at modeling the effect of surface phonons on the dynamics. Molecular dynamics with electronic friction has been used to model the effect of electron-hole pair excitation. Most applications are still based on potential energy surfaces (PESs) or forces computed with density functional theory (DFT), using a density functional within the generalized gradient approximation to the exchange-correlation energy. A new development is the use of a semi-empirical version of DFT (the specific reaction parameter (SRP) approach to DFT). We also discuss the accurate methods that have become available to represent electronic structure data for the molecule-surface interaction in global PESs. It has now become possible to describe highly activated H2 + metal surface reactions with chemical accuracy using the SRP-DFT approach, as has been shown for H2 + Cu(111) and Cu(100). However, chemical accuracy with SRP-DFT has yet to be demonstrated for weakly activated systems like H2 + Ru(0001) and non-activated systems like H2 + Pd(111), for which SRP DFs are not yet available. There is now considerable evidence that electron-hole pair (ehp) excitation does not need to be modeled to achieve the (chemically) accurate calculation of dissociative chemisorption and scattering probabilities. Dynamics calculations show that phonons can be safely neglected in the chemically accurate calculation of sticking probabilities on cold metal surfaces for activated systems, and in the calculation of a number of other observables. However, there is now sufficient evidence to suggest that the decision on whether or not to neglect phonons should be taken with care, with appropriate consideration of the observable to be computed and of the relevant surface temperature. AIMD calculations have provided valuable insights into the mechanisms that are operative in the dissociative adsorption and absorption of hydrogen on/in precovered metal surfaces. Classical and quantum dynamics calculations have shown that the reaction probability of H2 on Pt surfaces consisting of (100) steps and (111) terraces can to a very good approximation be computed as a weighted average of the reactivities on the steps and terraces. Progress obtained with dynamics calculations on the scattering of H2 from alloys and from simple low index metal surfaces is also reported. Insights that may be obtained on the reactivity of a metal surface from the prominent presence of out-of-plane diffraction or, conversely, the complete absence of diffraction, are discussed. A new field has been opened up by experiments on H2 scattering from surfaces at fast grazing incidence, and we discuss new predictions regarding diffraction and dissociative scattering of H2 under such conditions. © 2016 The Royal Society of Chemistry.

Catalan J.,Autonomous University of Madrid | Catalan J.P.,Spanish University for Distance Education (UNED)
Physical Chemistry Chemical Physics | Year: 2011

The solvatochromism of the n ↔ π* electronic transitions of acetone, which is determined in this work by means of absorption and emission spectroscopy, has been studied using the pure solvent scales for polarizability, dipolarity and acidity of the medium. From these analyses, the necessary reduction of the dipole moment and the increase of the polarizability for acetone on electronic excitation are evaluated using Abe's approach (Bull. Chem. Soc. Jpn. 1966, 39, 936). The influence that the increase of the aromatic structure (cf. acetophenone) and the lengthening of the size of the alkyl substituents R- (cf. R-CO-R) cause on the solvatochromism of acetone is discussed. Also, we have shown that the photophysical model proposed by Pimentel (J. Am. Chem. Soc. 1957, 79, 3323), which is widely accepted for explaining the n → π* blue shift phenomenon for hydrogen-bonded complexes, is mistaken due to ignoring the acid-base changes undergone on electronic excitation; accordingly, a new photophysical model has been proposed. © the Owner Societies 2011.

The present paper provides new information on Pleistocene glacial activity in a mountainous area of the Iberian Central System. A sediment analysis associated with Pleistocene modelling was carried out using: (1) granulometric and morphometric procedures, (2) quartz grain microtexture techniques (SEM) to discriminate between glacial and no glacial origins of sediments, (3) clay X-ray diffraction study to determine intra-Pleistocene climate variability, and (4) optically stimulated luminescence (OSL) absolute dating. The results show that the sediments were formed in two different phases associated with glacial dynamics, one of them was 35–30 ky BP and another was 25–20 ky BP, separated by a short intermediate warm-wet period. Identification of glacial phenomena is new for the northern slopes of the Guadarrama Mountains (facing the north Meseta, Duero basin), although they are not unusual within the general context of the Iberian Central System. From the data provided, we deduce that glaciation in these mountains was much more intense and widespread than had previously been thought because, on the northern slopes, glaciers occupied large areas reaching the base of the mountains. The evidence favours new interpretations of Pleistocene morphology in the centre of the Iberian Peninsula and, by extension, on the southwestern edge of Europe; it also highlights the sensitivity of mountainous areas with regard to Quaternary climate changes. © 2016 Elsevier B.V.

Lopez-Gutierrez J.C.,Autonomous University of Madrid
Interactive Cardiovascular and Thoracic Surgery | Year: 2011

PHACES syndrome is a spectrum of anomalies, P, posterior fossa anomalies as Dandy-Walker malformation; H, hemangioma; A, arterial lesions of the head and neck (the most commonly detected include dysplasia, aberrant origin or course, hypoplasia, and absence or agenesis); C, cardiac abnormalities as aortic coarctation; E, abnormalities of the eye and S, sternal defect, that may be present in up to 2% of children with facial hemangiomas and 20% of children with segmental facial hemangiomas. The constellation of PHACES syndrome symptoms may vary significantly between different patients. Major and minor criteria for PHACES syndrome have been recently described in order to improve their classification and management. We report the case of a newborn with PHACES syndrome, who had additional congenital defects including ectopia cordis as the most severe form of midline defect. Although the list and variety of published cardiac malformations in PHACES syndrome are extensive, ectopia cordis has not been previously reported. © 2011 Published by European Association for Cardio-Thoracic Surgery. All rights reserved.

Saugar I.,Cancer Research UK Research Institute | Saugar I.,Autonomous University of Madrid | Parker J.L.,Cancer Research UK Research Institute | Zhao S.,Cancer Research UK Research Institute | Ulrich H.D.,Cancer Research UK Research Institute
Nucleic Acids Research | Year: 2012

Mgs1, the budding yeast homolog of mammalian Werner helicase-interacting protein 1 (WRNIP1/WHIP), contributes to genome stability during undisturbed replication and in response to DNA damage. A ubiquitin-binding zinc finger (UBZ) domain directs human WRNIP1 to nuclear foci, but the functional significance of its presence and the relevant ubiquitylation targets that this domain recognizes have remained unknown. Here, we provide a mechanistic basis for the ubiquitin-binding properties of the protein. We show that in yeast an analogous domain exclusively mediates the damage-related activities of Mgs1. By means of preferential physical interactions with the ubiquitylated forms of the replicative sliding clamp, proliferating cell nuclear antigen (PCNA), the UBZ domain facilitates recruitment of Mgs1 to sites of replication stress. Mgs1 appears to interfere with the function of polymerase δ, consistent with our observation that Mgs1 inhibits the interaction between the polymerase and PCNA. Our identification of Mgs1 as a UBZ-dependent downstream effector of ubiquitylated PCNA suggests an explanation for the ambivalent role of the protein in damage processing. © 2011 The Author(s).

Izquierdo J.M.,Autonomous University of Madrid
Biochemical and Biophysical Research Communications | Year: 2010

The differential expression levels of T-cell intracellular antigens (TIA) and Hu antigen R (HuR) are concomitant with a splicing switch in apoptosis receptor Fas in HCT-116 cells. Thus, overexpression and knockdown of HuR led to Fas exon 6 skipping and inclusion, respectively. These results suggest that the TIA and HuR cellular ratio influences cell-type specific Fas exon 6 splicing pattern. © 2010 Elsevier Inc.

Martin-Gayo E.,Autonomous University of Madrid | Sierra-Filardi E.,CSIC - Biological Research Center | Corbi A.L.,CSIC - Biological Research Center | Toribio M.L.,Autonomous University of Madrid
Blood | Year: 2010

The generation of natural regulatory T cells (nTregs) is crucial for the establishment of immunologic self-tolerance and the prevention of autoimmunity. Still, the origin of nTregs and the mechanisms governing their differentiation within the thymus are poorly understood, particularly in humans. It was recently shown that conventional dendritic cells (cDCs) in human thymus were capable of inducing nTreg differentiation. However, the function of plasmacytoid DCs (pDCs), the other major subset of thymic DCs, remains unknown. Here we report that pDCs resident in the human thymus, when activated with CD40 ligand (CD40L) plus interleukin-3, efficiently promoted the generation of CD4 +CD25+Foxp3+ nTregs from autologous thymocytes. The progenitors of these nTregs were selectively found within CD4 +CD8+ thymocytes that had accomplished positive selection, as judged by their CD69hiTCRhi phenotype. Supporting the involvement of the CD40-CD40L pathway in pDC-induced nTreg generation, we show that positively selected CD4+CD8+ progenitors specifically transcribed CD40L in vivo and upregulated CD40L expression on T-cell receptor engagement, thereby promoting the activation of pDCs. Finally, evidence is provided that nTregs primed by pDCs displayed reciprocal interleukin-10/ transforming growth factor-β cytokine expression profiles compared with nTregs primed by cDCs. This functional diversity further supports a nonredundant tolerogenic role for thymic pDCs in the human thymus. © 2010 by The American Society of Hematology.

Mateu M.G.,Autonomous University of Madrid
Protein Engineering, Design and Selection | Year: 2011

Chemically and/or genetically engineered viruses, viral capsids and viral-like particles carry the promise of important and diverse applications in biomedicine, biotechnology and nanotechnology. Potential uses include new vaccines, vectors for gene therapy and targeted drug delivery, contrast agents for molecular imaging and building blocks for the construction of nanostructured materials and electronic nanodevices. For many of the contemplated applications, the improvement of the physical stability of viral particles may be critical to adequately meet the demanding physicochemical conditions they may encounter during production, storage and/or medical or industrial use. The first part of this review attempts to provide an updated general overview of the fast-moving, interdisciplinary virus engineering field; the second part focuses specifically on the modification of the physical stability of viral particles by protein engineering, an emerging subject that has not been reviewed before. © The Author 2010. Published by Oxford University Press. All rights reserved.

Garcia-Martos C.,Technical University of Madrid | Rodriguez J.,Autonomous University of Madrid | Sanchez M.J.,Technical University of Madrid
Energy Economics | Year: 2011

The liberalization of electricity markets more than ten years ago in the vast majority of developed countries has introduced the need of modelling and forecasting electricity prices and volatilities, both in the short and long term. Thus, there is a need of providing methodology that is able to deal with the most important features of electricity price series, which are well known for presenting not only structure in conditional mean but also time-varying conditional variances. In this work we propose a new model, which allows to extract conditionally heteroskedastic common factors from the vector of electricity prices. These common factors are jointly estimated as well as their relationship with the original vector of series, and the dynamics affecting both their conditional mean and variance. The estimation of the model is carried out under the state-space formulation. The new model proposed is applied to extract seasonal common dynamic factors as well as common volatility factors for electricity prices and the estimation results are used to forecast electricity prices and their volatilities in the Spanish zone of the Iberian Market. Several simplified/alternative models are also considered as benchmarks to illustrate that the proposed approach is superior to all of them in terms of explanatory and predictive power. © 2011 Elsevier B.V.

Poch C.,Complutense University of Madrid | Campo P.,Autonomous University of Madrid | Campo P.,Polytechnic University of Mozambique
Frontiers in Human Neuroscience | Year: 2012

Working memory (WM) is the ability to transiently maintain and manipulate internal representations beyond its external availability to the senses. This process is thought to support high level cognitive abilities and been shown to be strongly predictive of individual intelligence and reasoning abilities. While early models of WM have relied on a modular perspective of brain functioning, more recent evidence suggests that cognitive functions emerge from the interactions of multiple brain regions to generate large-scale networks. Here we will review the current research on functional connectivity of WM processes to highlight the critical role played by neural interactions in healthy and pathological brain states. Recent findings demonstrate that WM abilities are not determined solely by local brain activity, but also rely on the functional coupling of neocortical-hippocampal regions to support WM processes. Although the hippocampus has long been held to be important for long-term declarative memory, recent evidence suggests that the hippocampus may also be necessary to coordinate disparate cortical regions supporting the periodic reactivation of internal representations in WM. Furthermore, recent brain imaging studies using connectivity measures, have shown that changes in cortico-limbic interactions can be useful to characterize WM impairments observed in different neuropathological conditions. Recent advances in electrophysiological and neuroimaging techniques to model network activity has led to important insights into how neocortical and hippocampal regions support WM processes and how disruptions along this network can lead to the memory impairments commonly reported in many neuropathological populations. ©2012 Pochand Campo.

Sastre-Perona A.,Autonomous University of Madrid | Santisteban P.,Autonomous University of Madrid
Frontiers in Endocrinology | Year: 2012

Aberrant activation of Wnt signaling is involved in the development of several epithelial tumors. Wnt signaling includes two major types of pathways: (i) the canonical or Wnt/β catenin pathway; and (ii) the non-canonical pathways, which do not involve β-catenin stabilization. Among these pathways, the Wnt/β-catenin pathway has received most atten tion during the past years for its critical role in cancer. A number of publications emphasize the role of the Wnt/β-catenin pathway in thyroid cancer.This pathway plays a crucial role in development and epithelial renewal, and components such as β-catenin and Axin are often mutated in thyroid cancer. Although it is accepted that altered Wnt signaling is a late event in thyroid cell transformation that affects anaplastic thyroid tumors, recent data suggest that it is also altered in papillary thyroid carcinoma (PTC) with RET/PTC mutations. There fore, the purpose of this review is to summarize the main relevant data of Wnt signaling in thyroid cancer, with special emphasis on the Wnt/β-catenin pathway © 2012 Sastre-Perona and Santisteban.

Kiermaier M.,Princeton University | Okawa Y.,University of Tokyo | Soler P.,Autonomous University of Madrid
Journal of High Energy Physics | Year: 2011

We construct analytic solutions of open string field theory using boundary condition changing (bcc) operators. We focus on bcc operators with vanishing conformal weight such as those for regular marginal deformations of the background. For any Fock space state φ, the component string field (φ, Ψ) of the solution Ψ exhibits a remarkable factorization property: it is given by the matter three-point function of φ with a pair of bcc operators, multiplied by a universal function that only depends on the conformal weight of φ. This universal function is given by a simple integral expression that can be computed once and for all. The three-point functions with bcc operators are thus the only needed physical input of the particular open string background described by the solution. We illustrate our solution with the example of the rolling tachyon profile, for which we prove convergence analytically. The form of our solution, which involves bcc operators instead of explicit insertions of the marginal operator, can be a natural starting point for the construction of analytic solutions for arbitrary backgrounds. © SISSA 2011.

Cah3 is the only carbonic anhydrase (CA) isoform located in the thylakoid lumen of Chlamydomonas reinhardtii. Previous studies demonstrated its association with the donor side of the photosystem II (PSII) where it is required for the optimal function of the water oxidizing complex. However this enzyme has also been frequently proposed to perform a critical function in inorganic carbon acquisition and CO(2) fixation and all mutants lacking Cah3 exhibit very poor growth after transfer to low CO(2) conditions. In the present work we demonstrate that after transfer to low CO(2), Cah3 is phosphorylated and that phosphorylation is correlated to changes in its localization and its increase in activity. When C. reinhardtii wild-type cells were acclimated to limiting CO(2) conditions, the Cah3 activity increased about 5-6 fold. Under these conditions, there were no detectable changes in the level of the Cah3 polypeptide. The increase in activity was specifically inhibited in the presence of Staurosporine, a protein kinase inhibitor, suggesting that the Cah3 protein was post-translationally regulated via phosphorylation. Immunoprecipitation and in vitro dephosphorylation experiments confirm this hypothesis. In vivo phosphorylation analysis of thylakoid polypeptides indicates that there was a 3-fold increase in the phosphorylation signal of the Cah3 polypeptide within the first two hours after transfer to low CO(2) conditions. The increase in the phosphorylation signal was correlated with changes in the intracellular localization of the Cah3 protein. Under high CO(2) conditions, the Cah3 protein was only associated with the donor side of PSII in the stroma thylakoids. In contrast, in cells grown at limiting CO(2) the protein was partly concentrated in the thylakoids crossing the pyrenoid, which did not contain PSII and were surrounded by Rubisco molecules. This is the first report of a CA being post-translationally regulated and describing phosphorylation events in the thylakoid lumen.

Alfageme Roldan F.,Autonomous University of Madrid
Actas Dermo-Sifiliograficas | Year: 2014

The interaction of high-frequency ultrasound waves with the skin provides the basis for noninvasive, fast, and accessible diagnostic imaging. This tool is increasingly used in skin cancer and inflammatory conditions as well as in cosmetic dermatology. This article reviews the basic principles of skin ultrasound and its applications in the different areas of dermatology. © 2013 Elsevier España, S.L.U. y AEDV.

Rodriguez-Merchan E.C.,Autonomous University of Madrid
Archives of Bone and Joint Surgery | Year: 2014

The aim of this review article is to analyze the clinical effectiveness of total knee replacement (TKR) compared to unicompartmental knee replacement (UKR) in patients with medial unicompartmental osteoarthritis (MUO) in terms of survival rates, revision rates and postoperative complications. The search engine was MedLine. The keywords used were: Medial knee osteoarthritis. Three thousand and ninety-six articles were found on 28 April 2014. Of those, only twenty-eight were selected and reviewed because they were strictly focused on the topic of this article. Compared with those who have TKR, patients who undergo UKR have higher revision rates and lower survival rates at 5, 10 and 15 years. The reported overall risk of postoperative complications for patients undergoing TKR is 11%, compared with 4.3% for patients undergoing UKR. In conclusion, UKR have higher revision rates and lower survival rates than TKR. There is, however, an increased risk of postoperative complications after TKR. © 2014 by The Archives of Bone and Joint Surgery.

Kujawska M.,University of Lodz | Pardo-De-Santayana M.,Autonomous University of Madrid
Journal of Ethnopharmacology | Year: 2015

Ethnopharmacological relevance: Using the example of Polish migrants living in the subtropics of Argentina, we attempt to expand knowledge about migrant strategies for retaining their agency in medicinal plant procurement. Aim of the study: Is to state which environments play a pivotal role as a source of medicinal plants for the study community, and if a gradient of relevance exists in the exploitation of medicinally useful species between the most proximate and the most distant habitats. We particularly aim to answer the following questions: (1) if Polish migrants have changed their patterns of obtaining medicinal plants during the migratory process; and (2) if the choice of strategies for medicinal plants depends on: (a) the degree of floristic and environmental similarity between the home and host country; (b) the perception and usefulness of certain environments as a source of medicinal plants; (c) the degree of contact with the local population in the host country, and/or (d) the degree of contact between migrants and their homeland. Material and methods: The analysis is grounded in data from different types of interviews and a homegarden inventory addressed to 72 study participants. Voucher specimens of species mentioned were gathered and identified. Two indices were used as proxy measures: (1) the number of species obtained from each habitat, and (2) the number of citations for both modes and places of obtaining medicinal plants. Results: Due to different flora found in Argentina, Polish migrants could reconstruct only bits and pieces of their native pharmacopoeia. They could not acquire medicinal plants either from relatives in Poland or via importation. Therefore they had to develop new strategies for securing medicinal resources. During the migratory process, Poles in Misiones changed forms and places of obtaining medicinal plants. Cultivated species from homegardens play the most important role, while in the native country homegarden species were used sparsely. The second most important environment for medicinal plant procurement is the forest, whose exploitation was increased by contact with local mestizos and indigenous groups. Conclusions: This study clearly shows that traditional knowledge can be adaptive and resilient. New species have been selected and incorporated from mestizos, and indigenous people, and at the same time the use of some legacy plants has been preserved. The importance of home gardens as a venue for medicinal plants is another facet of this adaptive process. Traditional knowledge is resilient too, because despite the many changes that have occurred, Polish people have maintained phytotherapy as their preferred form of treating ailments, and managed to retain certain species brought from Europe as the most relevant. © 2015 Elsevier Ireland Ltd. All rights reserved.

Castellanos-Gomez A.,Autonomous University of Madrid | Agrat N.,Autonomous University of Madrid | Agrat N.,IMDEA Madrid Institute for Advanced Studies | Rubio-Bollinger G.,Autonomous University of Madrid
Applied Physics Letters | Year: 2010

We present a systematic study of the optical contrast of niobium diselenide and molybdenum disulfide flakes deposited onto silicon wafers with a thermally grown silicon oxide layer. We measure the optical contrast of flakes whose thickness, which is obtained by atomic force microscopy, ranges from 200 layers down to a monolayer using different illumination wavelengths in the visible spectrum. The refractive index of these thin crystals has been obtained from the optical contrast using Fresnel law. In this way the optical microscopy data can be quantitatively analyzed to determine the thickness of the flakes in a fast and nondestructive way. © 2010 American Institute of Physics.

Klingenberg C.P.,University of Manchester | Marugan-Lobon J.,Autonomous University of Madrid
Systematic Biology | Year: 2013

Quantifying integration and modularity of evolutionary changes in morphometric traits is crucial for understanding how organismal shapes evolve. For this purpose, comparative studies are necessary, which need to take into account the phylogenetic structure of interspecific data. This study applies several of the standard tools of geometric morphometrics, which mostly have been used in intraspecific studies, in the new context of analyzing integration and modularity based on comparative data. Morphometric methods such as principal component analysis, multivariate regression, partial least squares, and modularity tests can be applied to phylogenetically independent contrasts of shape data.We illustrate this approach in an analysis of cranial evolution in 160 species from all orders of birds. Mapping the shape information onto the phylogeny indicates that there is a significant phylogenetic signal in skull shape. Multivariate regression of independent contrasts of shape on independent contrasts of size reveals clear evolutionary allometry. Regardless of whether or not a correction for allometry is used, evolutionary integration between the face and braincase is strong, and tests reject the hypothesis that the face and braincase are separate evolutionarymodules. These analyses can easily be applied to other taxa and can be combined with other morphometric tools to address a wide range of questions about evolutionary patterns and processes. [Aves;comparativemethods; independent contrasts;morphological integration; partial least squares; Procrustes superimposition; shape; skull.] © The Author(s) 2013.

Sacha G.M.,Autonomous University of Madrid
Applied Physics Letters | Year: 2010

A method to calculate electric magnitudes at very small tip-sample distances in atomic force microscopy is presented. We show that the method accurately calculates the electrostatic potential and vertical force for electrostatic force microscopy geometries that cannot be correctly simulated by the standard techniques. This technique can accurately calculate tip-sample distances four orders of magnitude smaller than the tip radius. We also demonstrate that, at this range, traditional techniques underestimate the electrostatic force in almost 30%. Finally, we calculate the jump-to-contact distance for geometries obtained from experiments that combine atomic force microscopy and scanning tunneling microscopy. © 2010 American Institute of Physics.

Arregui L.,University of Calgary | Dobrinski I.,Autonomous University of Madrid
Reproduction | Year: 2014

Spermatogenesis is a dynamic and complex process that involves endocrine and testicular factors. During xenotransplantation of testicular tissue fragments into immunodecifient mice, a functional communication between host brain and donor testis is established. This interaction allows for the progression of spermatogenesis and recovery of fertilisation-competent spermatozoa from a broad range of mammalian species. In the last few years, significant progress has been achieved in testis tissue xenografting that improves our knowledge about the factors determining the success of grafting. The goal of this review is to provide up to date information about the role of factors such as donor age, donor species, testis tissue preservation or type of recipient mouse on the efficiency of this technique. Applications are described and compared with other techniques with similar purposes. Recent work has demonstrated that testicular tissue xenografting is used as a model to study gonadotoxicity of drugs and to obtain sperm from valuable young males. © 2014 Society for Reproduction and Fertility.

Kelley R.,Harvard University | Schwartz M.D.,Harvard University | Schabinger R.M.,Autonomous University of Madrid | Zhu H.X.,Beijing University of Technology
Physical Review D - Particles, Fields, Gravitation and Cosmology | Year: 2012

We investigate the exclusive jet mass distribution in e +e - events, defined with a veto on the out-of-jet radiation, at two-loop order. In particular, we calculate the two-loop soft function, which is required to describe this distribution in the region of small jet mass. When combined with other ingredients using the soft-collinear effective theory, this generates the complete singular distribution for jet thrust, the sum of the jet masses, at two-loop order. The result is in excellent agreement with full quantum chromodynamics. The integrated jet thrust distribution is found to depend in an intricate way on both the finite jet cone size, R, and the jet veto scale. The result clarifies the structure of the potentially large logarithms (both global and nonglobal) which arise in jet observables for the first time at this order. Somewhat surprisingly, we find that, in the small R limit, there is a precise and simple correspondence between the nonglobal contribution to the integrated jet thrust distribution and the previously calculated nonglobal contribution to the integrated hemisphere soft function, including subleading terms. This suggests that the small R limit may provide a useful expansion for studying other exclusive jet substructure observables. © 2012 American Physical Society.

Del Mar Alonso-Almeida M.,Autonomous University of Madrid | Rodriguez-Anton J.M.,Autonomous University of Madrid
Journal of Cleaner Production | Year: 2011

While the literature over the last ten years has dealt with the implementation of quality, environmental and other management systems in terms of the interest aroused and results obtained, little has been written about organisational behaviour and the extent to which such standards have been adopted in the service sector. The present article explores these variables in the hotel industry, based on information collected from 403 hotels. The empirical analysis conducted evinces significant differences in behaviour and penetration between the service and manufacturing sectors, as well as between the implementation of management systems and the introduction of other business practices in the hotel industry. The results shed light on the importance of implementing certified management systems for conducting the hotel business. © 2011 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

Colomer M.T.,Autonomous University of Madrid
Journal of Power Sources | Year: 2011

For the first time, mesoporous acid-free hematite ceramic membranes have been studied as proton conductors. The xerogels after calcination at 300 °C for 1 h were mesoporous, as is mentioned above, with a BET surface area of 130 ± 2 m2 g-1, an average pore diameter of 3.8 nm and a pore volume of 0.149 ± 0.001 cc g-1. A sigmoidal dependence of the conductivity and the water uptake with the RH at a constant temperature was observed. The conductivity of the ceramic membranes increased linearly with temperature for all relative humidities studied. The highest value of proton conductivity was found to be 2.76 × 10-3 S cm-1 at 90 °C and 81% RH. According to the activation energy values, proton migration in this kind of materials could be dominated by the Grotthuss mechanism in the whole range of RH. The low cost and high hydrophilicity of these ceramic membranes make them potential substitutes for perfluorosulfonic polymeric membranes in proton exchange membrane (PEMFCs). In addition, since hydrogen permeability values are in the range of 10-9 to 10 -10 mol cm-1 s Pa, in order to fabricate oxide-based PEMs that are capable of keeping streams of H2 and O2 from mixing, a separation layer with pore sizes <2 nm whose pores are filled with water will be needed. © 2011 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

Evangeli C.,Autonomous University of Madrid | Gillemot K.,Lancaster University | Leary E.,Autonomous University of Madrid | Leary E.,IMDEA Madrid Institute for Advanced Studies | And 5 more authors.
Nano Letters | Year: 2013

We report the measurement of conductance and thermopower of C60 molecular junctions using a scanning tunneling microscope (STM). In contrast to previous measurements, we use the imaging capability of the STM to determine precisely the number of molecules in the junction and measure thermopower and conductance continuously and simultaneously during formation and breaking of the molecular junction, achieving a complete characterization at the single-molecule level. We find that the thermopower of C60 dimers formed by trapping a C60 on the tip and contacting an isolated C 60 almost doubles with respect to that of a single C60 and is among the highest values measured to date for organic materials. Density functional theory calculations show that the thermopower and the figure of merit continue increasing with the number of C60 molecules, demonstrating the enhancement of thermoelectric preformance by manipulation of intermolecular interactions. © 2013 American Chemical Society.

Sutter G.D.,Autonomous University of Madrid | Deschamps J.-P.,Rovira i Virgili University | Imana J.L.,Complutense University of Madrid
IEEE Transactions on Industrial Electronics | Year: 2011

Modular exponentiation with large modulus and exponent, which is usually accomplished by repeated modular multiplications, has been widely used in public key cryptosystems. Typically, the Montgomery's modular-multiplication algorithm is used since no trial division is necessary, and the carrysave addition (CSA) is employed to reduce the critical path. In this paper, we optimize the Montgomery's multiplication and propose architectures to perform the least significant bit first and the most significant bit first algorithms. The developed architecture has the following distinctive characteristics: 1) use of digit serial approach for Montgomery multiplication. 2) Conversion of the CSA representation of intermediate multiplication using carryskip addition. This allows the critical path to be reduced, albeit with a small-area speed penalty; and 3) precompute the quotient value in Montgomery's iteration in order to speed up the operating frequency. In this paper, we present results in Xilinx Virtex 5 and in 0.18-μm application-specified integrated circuit technologies. For fair comparison with previous works, Xilinx Virtex 2 results are reported. Experimental results show that the proposed modular exponentiation and modular-multiplication design obtain the best delay performance compared with the published works and outperform them in terms of areatime complexity as well. © 2006 IEEE.

Catalan J.,Autonomous University of Madrid
Dyes and Pigments | Year: 2012

The thermochromic behavior of solutions of stilbazolium dyes in dipolar 1-chlorobutane toward a solvent dipolarity change was used for the first time to demonstrate that stilbazolium betaine dyes exhibit inverted solvatochromism, with a bathochromic band shift in the low-dipolarity solvent region and a hypsochromic band shift in the high-dipolarity solvent region. Interestingly, the hypsochromic band shifts of the stilbazolium betaine dyes studied here are twice more sensitive to the dipolarity of the medium than its bathochromic band shifts. The solvatochromic behavior observed affords the following conclusions: (a) the solvated molecular forms of the chromophore involved in the hypsochromic band shifts are identical for absorption and emission in stilbazolium betaine dyes; (b) the absorbing form involved in the hypsochromic band shifts absorb at a longer wavelength (λ max = 696 nm) than that involved in the bathochromic band shifts (λ max = 609 nm) in the gas-phase spectrum, a fact which should be considered in developing structural models to account for this phenomenon. © 2012 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

Wang Y.,Autonomous University of Madrid | Diaz-Tendero S.,Autonomous University of Madrid | Alcami M.,IMDEA Madrid Institute for Advanced Studies | Martin F.,Autonomous University of Madrid
Nature Chemistry | Year: 2015

Fullerene anions and cations have unique structural, electronic, magnetic and chemical properties that make them substantially different from neutral fullerenes. Although much theoretical effort has been devoted to characterizing and predicting their properties, this has been limited to a fraction of isomeric forms, mostly for fullerene anions, and has practically ignored fullerene cations. Here we show that the concepts of cage connectivity and frontier € orbitals allow one to understand the relative stability of charged fullerene isomers without performing elaborate quantum chemistry calculations. The latter is not a trivial matter, as the number of possible isomers for a medium-sized fullerene is many more than 100,000. The model correctly predicts the structures observed experimentally and explains why the isolated pentagon rule is often violated for fullerene anions, but the opposite is found for fullerene cations. These predictions are relevant in fields as diverse as astrophysics, electrochemistry and supramolecular chemistry. © 2015 Macmillan Publishers Limited. All rights reserved.

De Diego A.M.G.,Autonomous University of Madrid
American Journal of Physiology - Cell Physiology | Year: 2010

The ability of adrenal chromaffin cells to fast-release catecholamines relies on their capacity to fire action potentials (APs). However, little attention has been paid to the requirements needed to evoke the controlled firing of APs. Few data are available in rodents and none on the bovine chromaffin cell, a model extensively used by researchers. The aim of this work was to clarify this issue. Short puffs of acetylcholine (ACh) were fast perifused to current-clamped chromaffin cells and produced the firing of single APs. Based on the currents generated by such ACh applications and previous literature, current waveforms that efficiently elicited APs at frequencies up to 20 Hz were generated. Complex waveforms were also generated by adding simple waveforms with different delays; these waveforms aimed at modeling the stimulation patterns that a chromaffin cell would conceivably undergo upon strong synaptic stimulation. Cholinergic innervation was assessed using the acetylcholinesterase staining technique on the supposition that the innervation pattern is a determinant of the kind of stimuli chromaffin cells can receive. It is concluded that 1) a reliable method to produce frequency-controlled APs by applying defined current injection waveforms is achieved; 2) the APs thus generated have essentially the same features as those spontaneously emitted by the cell and those elicited by fast-ACh perifusion; 3) the higher frequencies attainable peak at around 30 Hz; and 4) the bovine adrenal medulla shows abundant cholinergic innervation, and chromaffin cells show strong acetylcholinesterase staining, consistent with a tight cholinergic presynaptic control of firing frequency. Copyright © 2010 the American Physiological Society.

De Castro A.,Autonomous University of Madrid | Todorovich E.,Autonomous University of Madrid
IEEE Transactions on Power Electronics | Year: 2010

This letter proposes a very high resolution digital pulsewidth modulator (DPWM) architecture that takes advantage of a field-programmable gate array (FPGA) advanced clock management capability-the fine phase shifting of the clock. This feature is available in almost every FPGA nowadays, thus allowing very small and programmable delays between the input and output clocks. An original use of this fine phase shifting pushes the limits of DPWM resolution. The experimental results show a time resolution of 19.5 ps in a Virtex-5 FPGA. © 2006 IEEE.

Bonforte M.,Autonomous University of Madrid | Grillo G.,Polytechnic University of Turin | Vazquez J.L.,Autonomous University of Madrid
Archive for Rational Mechanics and Analysis | Year: 2010

We consider the asymptotic behaviour of positive solutions u(t, x) of the fast diffusion equation ut=Δ(um/m)=div(um-1∇u) posed for x ∈ ℝd,t > 0, with a precise value for the exponent m = (d - 4)/(d - 2). The space dimension is d ≧ 3 so that m < 1, and even m = -1 for d = 3. This case had been left open in the general study (Blanchet et al. in Arch Rat Mech Anal 191:347-385, 2009) since it requires quite different functional analytic methods, due in particular to the absence of a spectral gap for the operator generating the linearized evolution. The linearization of this flow is interpreted here as the heat flow of the Laplace- Beltrami operator of a suitable Riemannian Manifold (ℝd,g) with a metric g which is conformal to the standard ℝd metric. Studying the pointwise heat kernel behaviour allows to prove suitable Gagliardo-Nirenberg inequalities associated with the generator. Such inequalities in turn allow one to study the nonlinear evolution as well, and to determine its asymptotics, which is identical to the one satisfied by the linearization. In terms of the rescaled representation, which is a nonlinear Fokker-Planck equation, the convergence rate turns out to be polynomial in time. This result is in contrast with the known exponential decay of such representation for all other values of m. © Springer-Verlag 2009.

Bastolla U.,Autonomous University of Madrid
Wiley Interdisciplinary Reviews: Computational Molecular Science | Year: 2014

Elastic network models ENMs allow to analytically predict the equilibrium dynamics of proteins without the need of lengthy simulations and force fields, and they depend on a small number of parameters and choices. Despite they are valid only for small fluctuations from the mean native structure, it was observed that large functional conformation changes are well described by a small number of low frequency normal modes. This observation has greatly stimulated the application of ENMs for studying the functional dynamics of proteins, and it is prompting the question whether this functional dynamics is a target of natural selection. From a physical point of view, the agreement between low frequency normal modes and large conformation changes is stimulating the study of anharmonicity in protein dynamics, probably one of the most interesting direction of development in ENMs. ENMs have many applications, of which we will review four general types: (1) the efficient sampling of native conformation space, with applications to molecular replacement in X-ray spectroscopy, cryo electro-miscroscopy, docking and homology modeling; (2) the prediction of paths of conformation change between two known end states; (3) the comparison of the dynamics of evolutionarily related proteins; (4) the prediction of dynamical couplings that allow the allosteric regulation of the active site from a distant control regions, with possible applications in the development of allosteric drugs. These goals have important biotechnological applications that are driving more and more attention on the analytical study of protein dynamics through ENMs. © 2014 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.

De Juan F.,Indiana University Bloomington | Cortijo A.,Autonomous University of Madrid | Vozmediano M.A.H.,CSIC - Institute of Materials Science | Cano A.,European Synchrotron Radiation Facility
Nature Physics | Year: 2011

One of the most interesting aspects of graphene is the close relation between its structural and electronic properties. The observation of ripples both in free-standing graphene and in samples on a substrate has given rise to active investigation of the membrane-like properties of graphene, and the origin of the ripples remains one of the most interesting open problems concerning this system. The interplay of structural and electronic properties is successfully described by the modelling of curvature and elastic deformations by fictitious gauge fields. These fields have become an experimental reality after the observation of the Landau levels that can form in graphene due to strain. Here we propose a device to detect microstresses in graphene based on a scanning-tunnelling-microscopy set-up able to measure Aharonov-Bohm interferences at the nanometre scale. The predicted interferences in the local density of states are created by the fictitious magnetic field associated with elastic deformations of the sample. © 2011 Macmillan Publishers Limited. All rights reserved.

Fernandez N.,Autonomous University of Madrid | Martinez-Salas E.,Autonomous University of Madrid
RNA | Year: 2010

Translation initiation driven by internal ribosome entry site (IRES) elements is dependent on the structural organization of the IRES region. We have previously shown that a structural motif within the foot-and-mouth-disease virus IRES is recognized in vitro as substrate for the Synechocystis sp. RNase P ribozyme. Here we show that this structure-dependent endonuclease recognizes the IRES element in cultured cells, leading to inhibition of translation. Inhibition of IRES activity was dependent on the expression of the active ribozyme RNA subunit. Moreover, expression of the antisense sequence of the ribozyme did not inhibit IRES activity, demonstrating that stable RNA structures located upstream of the IRES element do not interfere with internal initiation. RNAs carrying defective IRES mutants that were substrates of the ribozyme in vivo revealed an increased translation of the reporter in response to the expression of the active ribozyme. In support of RNA cleavage, subsequent analysis of the translation initiation manner indicated a switch from IRES-dependent to 5′-end-dependent translation of RNase P target RNAs. We conclude that the IRES element is inactivated by expression in cis of RNase P in the cytoplasm of cultured cells, providing a promising antiviral tool to combat picornavirus infections. Furthermore, our results reinforce the essential role of the structural motif that serves as RNase P recognition motif for IRES activity.

Sanchez-Arago M.,Autonomous University of Madrid | Chamorro M.,Autonomous University of Madrid | Cuezva J.M.,Autonomous University of Madrid
Carcinogenesis | Year: 2010

The contribution that mitochondrial bioenergetics could have in cancer development is debated. Here, we have generated HCT116-derived colocarcinoma cell lines expressing different levels of the β catalytic subunit of the mitochondrial H+-adenosine triphosphate synthase to assess the contribution of mitochondrial bioenergetics in colon cancer progression. The generated cells exhibit large ultrastructural, transcriptomic, proteomic and functional differences in their mitochondria and in their in vivo tumor forming capacity.We show that the activity of oxidative phosphorylation defines the rate of glucose utilization by aerobic glycolysis. The aggressive cellular phenotype, which is highly glycolytic, is bound to the deregulated expression of genes involved in metabolic processes, the regulation of the cell cycle, apoptosis, angiogenesis and cell adhesion. Remarkably, the molecular and ultrastructural analysis of the tumors derived from the three HCT116 cell lines under study highlight that tumor promotion inevitably requires the selection of cancer cells with a repressed biogenesis and functional activity of mitochondria, i.e. the highly glycolytic phenotype is selected for tumor development. The tumor forming potential of the cells is a non-genetically acquired condition that provides the cancer cell with a cell-death resistant phenotype. An abrogated mitochondrial respiration contributes to a diminished potential for reactive oxygen species signaling in response to 5-fluorouracil treatment. Treatment of cancer cells with dichloroacetate partially restores the functional differentiation of mitochondria and promotes tumor regression, emphasizing the reversible nature of the metabolic trait of cancer. © The Author 2010. Published by Oxford University Press. All rights reserved. For Permissions, please email:

Byrne R.A.,TU Munich | Joner M.,TU Munich | Alfonso F.,Autonomous University of Madrid | Kastrati A.,TU Munich
Nature Reviews Cardiology | Year: 2014

Nonstent-based local drug delivery during percutaneous intervention offers potential for sustained antirestenotic efficacy without the limitations of permanent vascular implants. Preclinical studies have shown that effective local tissue concentrations of drugs can be achieved using drug-coated balloon (DCB) catheters. Matrix coatings consisting of a mixture of lipophilic paclitaxel and hydrophilic spacer (excipient) are most effective. Clinical applications most suited to DCB therapy are those for which stent implantation is not desirable or less effective, such as in-stent restenosis, bifurcation lesions, or peripheral artery stenoses. Randomized trials have shown superiority of DCBs over plain-balloon angioplasty for both bare-metal and drug-eluting coronary in-stent restenosis, and similar efficacy as repeat stenting with a drug-eluting stent (DES). Bycontrast, randomized trials of DCBs in de novo coronary stenosis have, to date, not shown similar efficacy to standard-of-care DES therapy. In peripheral artery disease, DCB therapy has proven superior to plain-balloon angioplasty for treatment of de novo femoropoliteal and below-the-knee disease, and shown promising results for in-stent restenosis. Overall, however, despite many years of clinical experience with DCBs, the number of large, high-quality, randomized clinical trials is low, and further data are urgently needed across the spectrum of clinical indications. © 2014 Macmillan Publishers Limited. All rights reserved.

Mateos L.,Autonomous University of Madrid | Bausa L.E.,Autonomous University of Madrid | Ramirez M.O.,Autonomous University of Madrid
Applied Physics Letters | Year: 2013

We report on highly controllable ferroelectric domain inversion in Yb 3+ doped LiNbO3 laser crystal. The ferroelectric domain patterns are fabricated by direct electron beam writing without any previous masking process. Square lattices of inverted domains with diameters and distance between domains as low as 1 μm are demonstrated. The lateral growth of the inverted domains is analyzed as a function of the applied charge and the threshold values for domains in the 1-10 μm length scale are determined. Spatially resolved low temperature fluorescence spectroscopy and non-collinear second harmonic generation experiments are also employed to evaluate the optical properties of the system. © 2013 American Institute of Physics.

Chuang C.-H.,Autonomous University of Madrid | Wang Y.,University of Oklahoma
Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society | Year: 2013

Galaxy clustering data can be used to measure the cosmic expansion history H(z), the angular diameter distance DA(z) and the linear redshift-space distortion parameter β(z). Here we present a method for using effective multipoles of the galaxy two-point correlation function ( ̂ξ0(s), ̂ξ2(s), ̂ξ4(s) and ̂ξ6(s), with s denoting the comoving separation) to measure H(z), DA(z) and β(z), and validate it using LasDamas mock galaxy catalogues. Our definition of effective multipoles explicitly incorporates the discreteness of measurements, and treats the measured correlation function and its theoretical model on the same footing. We find that for the mock data, ̂ξ0 + ̂ξ2 + ̂ξ4 captures nearly all the information, and gives significantly stronger constraints on H(z), DA(z) and β(z), compared to using only ̂ξ0 + ̂ξ2. We apply our method to the sample of luminous red galaxies from the Sloan Digital Sky Survey Data Release 7 without assuming a dark energy model or a flat universe. We find that ̂ξ4(s) deviates on scales of s < 60 Mpc h-1 from the measurement from mock data [in contrast to ̂ξ0(s), ̂ξ2(s) and ̂ξ6(s)]; thus, we only use ̂ξ0 + ̂ξ2 for our fiducial constraints. We obtain {H(0.35), DA(0.35), ωmh2, β(z)} = {79.6+8.3 -8.7 km s-1 Mpc-1, 1057+88 -87 Mpc, 0.103 ± 0.015, 0.44 ± 0.15} using ̂ξ0 + ̂ξ2. We find that H(0.35) rs(zd)/c and DA(0.35)/rs(zd) [where rs(zd) is the sound horizon at the drag epoch] are more tightly constrained: {H(0.35) rs(zd)/c, DA(0.35)/rs(zd)} = {0.0437+0.0041 -0.0043,6.48+0.44 -0.43} using ̂ξ0 + ̂ξ2. © 2013 The Authors Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the Royal Astronomical Society.

Wang Y.,University of Oklahoma | Chuang C.-H.,Autonomous University of Madrid | Hirata C.M.,California Institute of Technology
Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society | Year: 2013

Galaxy redshift surveys are becoming increasingly important as a dark energy probe. We improve the forecasting of dark energy constraints from galaxy redshift surveys by using the 'dewiggled' galaxy power spectrum, Pdw(k), in the Fisher matrix calculations. Since Pdw(k) is a good fit to real galaxy clustering data over most of the scale range of interest, our approach is more realistic compared to previous work in forecasting dark energy constraints from galaxy redshift surveys. We find that our new approach gives results in excellent agreement when compared to the results from the actual data analysis of the clustering of the Sloan Digital Sky Survey Data Release 7 luminous red galaxies. We provide forecasts of the dark energy constraints from a plausible Stage IV galaxy redshift survey. © 2013 The Authors Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the Royal Astronomical Society.

Chuang C.-H.,Autonomous University of Madrid | Wang Y.,University of Oklahoma
Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society | Year: 2013

We present a simple and efficient phenomenological model for the two-dimensional two-point galaxy correlation function that works well over a wide range of scales, from large scales down to scales as small as 25 h-1 Mpc. Our model incorporates non-linear effects and a scaledependent galaxy bias on small scales, and it allows the redshift-space distortions to be scale and direction dependent. We validate our model using LasDamas mock catalogues and apply it to the Sloan Digital Sky Survey (SDSS) Data Release Seven (DR7) luminous red galaxies (LRGs). Using only the monopole and quadrupole of the correlation function measured from the SDSS DR7 LRGs, we obtain improved measurements H(z)rs(zd)/c = 0.0433 ± 0.0042, DA(z)/rs (zd ) = 6.59 ± 0.46 and f (z)σ8(z) = 0.429 ± 0.089 at z = 0.35, using the scale range 25 < s < 120 h-1 Mpc.We expect our results and model to be useful in tightening dark energy and gravity constraints from the full analysis of current and future galaxy clustering data. © 2013 The Authors Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the Royal Astronomical Society.

Wittenmyer A.,University of New South Wales | Horner J.,University of New South Wales | Marshall J.P.,Autonomous University of Madrid
Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society | Year: 2013

We present a detailed dynamical analysis of the orbital stability of the two circumbinary planets recently proposed to orbit the evolved eclipsing binary star system NSVS 14256825. As is the case for other recently proposed circumbinary planetary systems detected through the timing of mutual eclipses between the central binary stars, the proposed planets do not stand up to dynamical scrutiny. The proposed orbits for the two planets are extremely unstable on time-scales of less than a thousand years, regardless of the mutual inclination between the planetary orbits. For the scenario where the planetary orbits are coplanar, a small region of moderate stability was observed, featuring orbits that were somewhat protected from destabilization by the influence of mutual 2:1 mean-motion resonance between the orbits of the planets. Even in this stable region, however, the systems tested typically only survived on time-scales of the order of 1 Myr, far shorter than the age of the system. Our results suggest that if there are planets in the NSVS 14256825 system, they must move on orbits dramatically different to those proposed in the discovery work. More observations are clearly critically required in order to constrain the nature of the suggested orbital bodies. © 2013 The Authors. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the Royal Astronomical Society.

Salas M.,Autonomous University of Madrid
Journal of Biological Chemistry | Year: 2012

This article is a survey of my scientific work over 52 years. During my postdoctoral stay in Severo Ochoa's laboratory, I determined the direction of reading of the genetic message, and I discovered two proteins that I showed to be involved in the initiation of protein synthesis. The work I have done in Spain with bacteriophage φ29 for 45 years has been very rewarding. I can say that I was lucky because I did not expect that φ29 would give so many interesting results, but I worked hard, with a lot of dedication and enthusiasm, and I was there when the luck arrived. I would like to emphasize our work on the control of φ29 DNA transcription and, in particular, the finding for the first time of a protein covalently linked to the 5′-ends of φ29 DNA that we later showed to be the primer for the initiation of phage DNA replication. Very relevant was the discovery of the φ29 DNA polymerase, with its properties of extremely high processivity and strand displacement capacity, together with its high fidelity. The φ29 DNA polymerase has become an ideal enzyme for DNA amplification, both rolling-circle and whole-genome linear amplification. I am also very proud of the many brilliant students and collaborators with whom I have worked over the years and who have become excellent scientists. This Reflections article is not intended to be the end of my scientific career. I expect to work for many years to come. © 2012 by The American Society for Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, Inc.

Calvo M.,Autonomous University of Madrid | Malinowski T.,Zaklad Biologii Ogolnej i Molekularnej | Garcia J.A.,Autonomous University of Madrid
Molecular Plant-Microbe Interactions | Year: 2014

Plum pox virus (PPV) C is one of the less common PPV strains and specifically infects cherry trees in nature. Making use of two PPV-C isolates that display different pathogenicity features, i.e., SwCMp, which had been adapted to Nicotiana species, and BY101, which had been isolated from cherry rootstock L2 (Prunus lannesiana) and propagated only in cherry species, we have generated two infective full-length cDNA clones in order to determine which viral factors are involved in the adaptation to each host. According to our results, the C-P3(PIPO)/6K1/N-CI (cylindrical inclusion) region contains overlapping but not coincident viral determinants involved in symptoms development, local viral amplification, and systemic movement capacity. Amino acid changes in this region promoting the adaptation to N. benthamiana or P. avium have trade-off effects in the alternative host. In both cases, adaptation can be achieved through single amino acid changes in the NIapro protease recognition motif between 6K1 and CI or in nearby sequences. Thus, we hypothesize that the potyvirus polyprotein processing could depend on specific host factors and the adaptation of PPV-C isolates to particular hosts relies on a fine regulation of the proteolytic cleavage of the 6K1-CI junction. © 2014 The American Phytopathological Society.

Losada A.,Rey Juan Carlos University | Marquez-Gonzalez M.,Autonomous University of Madrid | Romero-Moreno R.,Autonomous University of Madrid
International Journal of Geriatric Psychiatry | Year: 2011

Objective Different studies show the negative effects on caregivers' health of maladaptive thoughts and the positive effects of engaging in pleasurable activities on distress. The aim of this study is to (a) test the efficacy of a cognitive-behavioral intervention aimed at training caregivers to flexibilize maladaptive thoughts regarding caregiving and increasing their leisure activities and to (b) analyse the mediator role in the effects of the intervention of caregivers' change in dysfunctional thoughts and behavioral activation. Methods A total of 170 caregivers were contacted and randomly distributed to the intervention condition or to the control group. Depression, behavioral activation, and dysfunctional thoughts were assessed at baseline and post-intervention by 'blinded' interviewers. The intervention consisted in twelve group based sessions in which in addition to cognitive-behavioral techniques, caregivers' were trained in basic principles for caring for a relative with dementia. Results Significant intervention by time effects were found for depression, dysfunctional thoughts and frequency of leisure activities. Only significant positive effects were found for the intervention group. The regression analysis for testing mediational effects of dysfunctional thoughts and leisure activities on the relationship between participating on the intervention and changes in depressive symptomatology show that mediation is established in both cases. Conclusions The results of our study contribute to the literature on interventions for dementia caregivers highlighting the positive mediator effect that modifying caregivers' dysfunctional thoughts and increasing their behavioral activation has on caregivers' depressive symptomatology. Copyright © 2010 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.

Ruilope L.M.,Autonomous University of Madrid
Expert Review of Cardiovascular Therapy | Year: 2013

Hypertension is a modifiable risk factor for cardiovascular disease. Lowering blood pressure (BP) reduces cardiovascular risk; yet despite the availability of numerous antihypertensives, the proportion of patients achieving BP control remains low. Treatment guidelines are based on evidence from clinical trials, however this evidence may not be representative of real-world treatment effectiveness. Many studies evaluating antihypertensives continue to rely on office BP measurements that provide a less realistic evaluation of hypertension status than ambulatory measures. New studies are needed with greater consideration on evaluating efficacy for translation into clinical effectiveness. In addition, novel therapies for reducing BP and with a greater capacity to improve BP control are still required. This article discusses some of the challenges of hypertension management and reviews strategies and treatment advances that may pave the way to more effective BP control. © 2013 2013 Expert Reviews Ltd.

Hernandez-Apaolaza L.,Autonomous University of Madrid
Planta | Year: 2014

Silicon protects plants against various biotic and abiotic stresses, including metal toxicity. Under a high metal concentration, Si can externally decrease metal availability to the plant by its precipitation in the growth media, and Si also affects the metal distribution inside the plant, diminishing the damage. Could Si also protect plants against metal deficiency stress? Recently, the physiological role of Si in relation to micronutrients deficiency symptoms has been assessed in several plant species in hydroponics. In cucumber, Si supply mitigated the symptoms of Fe deficiency, but this effect was not clear under Zn- or Mn-deficiency conditions. The main factor controlling this beneficial effect seems to be the Si contribution to the formation of metal deposits in the root and/or leaves apoplast and its role in their following remobilization when required. The enhancement of the content of long-distance transport molecules (such as citrate) due to Si addition should also contribute to the metal transport from root to shoot, which will diminish deficiency symptoms. © 2014 Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg.

Agha R.,Autonomous University of Madrid | Quesada A.,Autonomous University of Madrid
Toxins | Year: 2014

Cyanobacterial oligopeptides comprise a wide range of bioactive and/or toxic compounds. While current research is strongly focused on exploring new oligopeptide variants and their bioactive properties, the biological role of these compounds remains elusive. Oligopeptides production abilities show a remarkably patchy distribution among conspecific strains. This observation has prompted alternative approaches to unveil their adaptive value, based on the use of cellular oligopeptide compositions as biomarkers of intraspecific subpopulations or chemotypes in freshwater cyanobacteria. Studies addressing the diversity, distribution, and dynamics of chemotypes in natural systems have provided important insights into the structure and ecology of cyanobacterial populations and the adaptive value of oligopeptides. This review presents an overview of the fundamentals of this emerging approach and its most relevant findings, and discusses our current understanding of the role of oligopeptides in the ecology of cyanobacteria. © 2014 by the authors; licensee MDPI, Basel, Switzerland.

Tamargo J.,Complutense University of Madrid | Solini A.,University of Pisa | Ruilope L.M.,Autonomous University of Madrid
Seminars in Nephrology | Year: 2014

The first aldosterone blocker, spironolactone, initially was used as a diuretic but was accompanied by a significant amount of side effects that necessitated the withdrawal of the drug in a relevant number of patients. The discovery of the many receptor-mediated actions of aldosterone in several different organs greatly contributed to expand the indications of aldosterone blockers. Eplerenone was the second component of this class of drugs and differed from spironolactone because of its significantly better safety, albeit this was accompanied by a lower potency when used at equinumeric doses. Although these two drugs were being used in clinical practice, the epithelial sodium channel blockers, amiloride and triamterene, with a similar antialdosterone action, continued to be used in clinical practice in combination with thiazides and loop diuretics. New members of the third and fourth generation of mineralocorticoid receptor antagonists and aldosterone synthase inhibitors are in development. These new compounds, which include the new nonsteroidal mineralocorticoid-receptor antagonists and aldosterone synthase inhibitors, try to maintain adequate efficacy, avoiding the drawbacks of spironolactone and eplerenone. Ongoing studies will show the certainty of the capacities of these new compounds to override the virtues of the first mineralocorticoid-receptor spironolactone while avoiding the side effects leading so frequently to the withdrawal of the drug, including a significantly lower prevalence of hyperkalemia when chronic kidney disease is present. © 2014 Elsevier Inc.

Fernandez L.P.,Autonomous University of Madrid | Lopez-Marquez A.,Autonomous University of Madrid | Santisteban P.,Autonomous University of Madrid
Nature Reviews Endocrinology | Year: 2015

Identification of the thyroid transcription factors (TTFs), NKX2-1, FOXE1, PAX8 and HHEX, has considerably advanced our understanding of thyroid development, congenital thyroid disorders and thyroid cancer. The TTFs are fundamental to proper formation of the thyroid gland and for maintaining the functional differentiated state of the adult thyroid; however, they are not individually required for precursor cell commitment to a thyroid fate. Although knowledge of the mechanisms involved in thyroid development has increased, the full complement of genes involved in thyroid gland specification and the signals that trigger expression of the genes that encode the TTFs remain unknown. The mechanisms involved in thyroid organogenesis and differentiation have provided clues to identifying the genes that are involved in human congenital thyroid disorders and thyroid cancer. Mutations in the genes that encode the TTFs, as well as polymorphisms and epigenetic modifications, have been associated with thyroid pathologies. Here, we summarize the roles of the TTFs in thyroid development and the mechanisms by which they regulate expression of the genes involved in thyroid differentiation. We also address the implications of mutations in TTFs in thyroid diseases and in diseases not related to the thyroid gland. © 2015 Macmillan Publishers Limited. All rights reserved.

Lario L.D.,National University of Rosario | Ramirez-Parra E.,Technical University of Madrid | Gutierrez C.,Autonomous University of Madrid | Spampinato C.P.,National University of Rosario | Casati P.,National University of Rosario
Plant Physiology | Year: 2013

ANTI-SILENCING FUNCTION1 (ASF1) is a key histone H3/H4 chaperone that participates in a variety of DNA- and chromatin-related processes, including DNA repair, where chromatin assembly and disassembly are of primary relevance. Information concerning the role of ASF1 proteins in the post-ultraviolet (UV) response in higher plants is currently limited. In Arabidopsis (Arabidopsis thaliana), an initial analysis of in vivo localization of ASF1A and ASF1B indicates that both proteins are mainly expressed in proliferative tissues. In silico promoter analysis identified ASF1A and ASF1B as potential targets of Elongation Factor2 (E2F) transcription factors. These observations were experimentally validated, both in vitro, by electrophoretic mobility shift assays, and in vivo, by chromatin immunoprecipitation assays and expression analysis using transgenic plants with altered levels of different E2F transcription factors. These data suggest that ASF1A and ASF1B are regulated during cell cycle progression through E2F transcription factors. In addition, we found that ASF1A and ASF1B are associated with the UV-B-induced DNA damage response in Arabidopsis. Transcript levels of ASF1A and ASF1B were increased following UV-B treatment. Consistent with a potential role in UV-B response, RNA interference-silenced plants of both genes showed increased sensitivity to UV-B compared with wild-type plants. Finally, by coimmunoprecipitation analysis, we found that ASF1 physically interacts with amino-terminal acetylated histones H3 and H4 and with acetyltransferases of the Histone Acetyl Transferase subfamily, which are known to be involved in cell cycle control and DNA repair, among other functions. Together, we provide evidence that ASF1A and ASF1B are regulated by cell cycle progression and are involved in DNA repair after UV-B irradiation. © 2013 American Society of Plant Biologists. All Rights Reserved.

Calvo M.,Autonomous University of Madrid
BMC plant biology | Year: 2010

BACKGROUND: Plant genomes have been transformed with full-length cDNA copies of viral genomes, giving rise to what has been called 'amplicon' systems, trying to combine the genetic stability of transgenic plants with the elevated replication rate of plant viruses. However, amplicons' performance has been very variable regardless of the virus on which they are based. This has boosted further interest in understanding the underlying mechanisms that cause this behavior differences, and in developing strategies to control amplicon expression. RESULTS: Nicotiana benthamiana plants were transformed with an amplicon consisting of a full-length cDNA of the potyvirus Plum pox virus (PPV) genome modified to include a GFP reporter gene. Amplicon expression exhibited a great variability among different transgenic lines and even among different plants of the same line. Plants of the line 10.6 initially developed without signs of amplicon expression, but at different times some of them started to display sporadic infection foci in leaves approaching maturity. The infection progressed systemically, but at later times the infected plants recovered and returned to an amplicon-inactive state. The failure to detect virus-specific siRNAs in 10.6 plants before amplicon induction and after recovery suggested that a strong amplicon-specific RNA silencing is not established in these plants. However, the coexpression of extra viral silencing suppressors caused some amplicon activation, suggesting that a low level of RNA silencing could be contributing to maintain amplicon repression in the 10.6 plants. The resistance mechanisms that prevent amplicon-derived virus infection were also active against exogenous PPV introduced by mechanical inoculation or grafting, but did not affect other viruses. Amplicon-derived PPV was able to spread into wild type scions grafted in 10.6 rootstocks that did not display signs of amplicon expression, suggesting that resistance has little effect on virus movement. CONCLUSIONS: Our results suggest that amplicon-derived virus infection is limited in this particular transgenic line by a combination of factors, including the presumed low efficiency of the conversion from the transgene transcript to replicable viral RNA, and also by the activation of RNA silencing and other defensive responses of the plant, which are not completely neutralized by viral suppressors.

Amo-Ochoa P.,Autonomous University of Madrid | Zamora F.,Autonomous University of Madrid
Coordination Chemistry Reviews | Year: 2014

This review article focuses on the current state-of-the-art of coordination polymers using nucleobases as ligands. It collects the literature already published in a comprehensive way and attempts to provide perspectives for this research field. The article integrates two important concepts of coordination chemistry, metal-nucleobase chemistry and coordination polymers. It tries to demonstrate novel opportunities for these coordination polymers in terms of architectures and potential applications. The text is presented in three general sections according to the dimensionality of the coordination polymer, and then is subdivided in sections that take into account the structural role of the nucleobase as ligand (either terminal or bridging), and the nature of the nucleobase (pyrimidine vs purine). Synthetic, structural aspects and physico-chemical properties are presented for each sample. Valuable potential applications and perspectives for these novel materials are also discussed. © 2014.

Ruiz-Mirazo K.,University of the Basque Country | Briones C.,CSIC - National Institute of Aerospace Technology | De La Escosura A.,Autonomous University of Madrid
Chemical Reviews | Year: 2014

In order to explain how the first organisms might have appeared on Earth, or elsewhere, it is necessary to develop chemistries that enable the synthesis of information-bearing polymers, protometabolic networks, and protocellular compartments under compatible prebiotic conditions. In this direction, the first step would be the synthesis of the monomeric units that constitute peptides, nucleic acids or their analogue polymers, and vesicle membranes. Some of these building blocks could have been delivered to Earth from extraterrestrial sources, while their endogenous synthesis on our planet is another feasible option. Catalysis, in particular organocatalysis and organometallic catalysis, could have enlarged and diversified the set of compounds potentially present in different prebiotic scenarios. Vesicles composed of mixtures of simple amphiphilic molecules and surfactants, on the other hand, have shown the required stability and permeability for encapsulation of nucleic acids and peptides.

Claessens C.G.,Autonomous University of Madrid | Gonzalez-Rodriguez D.,Autonomous University of Madrid | Rodriguez-Morgade M.S.,Autonomous University of Madrid | Medina A.,Autonomous University of Madrid | And 2 more authors.
Chemical Reviews | Year: 2014

The chemistry of contracted porphyrinoids, subporphyrins (SubPs), subporphyrazines (SubPzs), and subphthalocyanines (SubPcs), has developed extraordinarily during the years. Significant efforts have been directed toward the preparation of new SubPzs that are usually prepared by reacting disubstituted maleonitriles with boron trichloride groups at the axial substitution by nucleophiles. One of the most outstanding applications of SubPcs is their incorporation as small molecules in photovoltaic devices in which generation of electrical current from solar energy takes place. Notable is also the progress in the field of energy and electron transfer in covalent and noncovalent SubPc/fullerene conjugates. The stepwise synthesis of larger systems, dimers, trimers, etc., with well-defined curved fully conjugated π surfaces is something achievable and can give rise to new compounds with interesting spectroscopic features, including Q bands that will be strongly shifted to the red and even near-IR.

Urbani M.,Autonomous University of Madrid | Urbani M.,IMDEA Madrid Institute for Advanced Studies | Gratzel M.,Ecole Polytechnique Federale de Lausanne | Nazeeruddin M.K.,Ecole Polytechnique Federale de Lausanne | And 2 more authors.
Chemical Reviews | Year: 2014

Among the several approaches for harnessing solar energy and converting it into electricity, dye-sensitized solar cells (DSSC) represent one of the most promising methods for future large-scale power production from renewable energy sources. In these cells, the sensitizer is one of the key components harvesting solar radiation and converting it into electric current. The electrochemical, photophysical, and ground and excited state properties of the sensitizer play an important role for charge transfer dynamics at the semiconductor interface. Moreover, for long-term stability and practical applications, electrolytes based on the iodine/triiodine couple also suffer from two other disadvantages: the corrosive effect toward the metal electrodes, and the partial absorption of the visible light by triiodine anions. These issues hence constitute one of the reasons that have encouraged the development of alternative iodine-free redox couples in liquid electrolytes for DSSCs.

Roman-Perez G.,Autonomous University of Madrid | Moaied M.,Autonomous University of Madrid | Soler J.M.,Autonomous University of Madrid | Yndurain F.,Autonomous University of Madrid
Physical Review Letters | Year: 2010

We present a study of the adsorption and diffusion of CH4, CO2, and H2 molecules in clathrate hydrates using ab initio van der Waals density functional formalism. We find that the adsorption energy is dominated by van der Waals interactions and that, without them, gas hydrates would not be stable. We calculate the maximum adsorption capacity as well as the maximum hydrocarbon size that can be adsorbed. The relaxation of the host lattice is essential for a good description of the diffusion activation energies, which are estimated to be of the order of 0.2, 0.4, and 1.0 eV for H2, CO2, and CH4, respectively. © 2010 The American Physical Society.

Nikitin A.Yu.,University of Zaragoza | Nikitin A.Yu.,Ukrainian Academy of Sciences | Garcia-Vidal F.J.,Autonomous University of Madrid | Martin-Moreno L.,University of Zaragoza
Physical Review Letters | Year: 2010

We present an analytical expression for the electromagnetic field at the surface radiated by a hole in a metal film. This expression is valid for any metal, from the optical range to longer wavelengths, and for distances to the hole larger than a few tens of nanometers. The field pattern presents a rich behavior, showing three regions (a complex short distance, an intermediate range dominated by surface plasmon polaritons, and a long-distance one dominated by Norton waves). The crossover distances between these regimes depend strongly on both the wavelength and the angle with respect to the incident field. © 2010 The American Physical Society.

Cano-Cortes L.,Autonomous University of Madrid | Merino J.,Autonomous University of Madrid | Fratini S.,CNRS Neel Institute
Physical Review Letters | Year: 2010

We consider quantum critical points in which quantum fluctuations associated with charge rather than magnetic order induce unconventional metallic properties. Based on finite-T calculations on a two-dimensional extended Hubbard model, we show how the coherence scale T* characteristic of Fermi liquid behavior of the homogeneous metal vanishes at the onset of charge order. A strong effective mass enhancement reminiscent of heavy fermion behavior indicates the possible destruction of quasiparticles at the quantum critical points. Experimental probes on quarter-filled layered organic materials are proposed for unveiling the behavior of electrons across the quantum critical region. © 2010 The American Physical Society.

Cuadrado A.,Autonomous University of Madrid
Free Radical Biology and Medicine | Year: 2015

Nuclear factor (erythroid-derived 2)-like 2 (NRF2) is a master regulator of cellular homeostasis that controls the expression of more than 1% of human genes related to biotransformation reactions, redox homeostasis, energetic metabolism, DNA repair, and proteostasis. Its activity has a tremendous impact on physiology and pathology and therefore it is very tightly regulated, mainly at the level of protein stability. In addition to the very well established regulation by the ubiquitin E3 ligase adapter KEAP1, recent advances have identified a novel mechanism based on signaling pathways that regulate glycogen synthase kinse-3 (GSK-3). This kinase phosphorylates specific serine residues in the Neh6 domain of NRF2 to create a degradation domain that is then recognized by the ubiquitin ligase adapter β-TrCP and tagged for proteasome degradation by a Cullin1/Rbx1 complex. Here we review the mechanistic elements and the signaling pathways that participate in this regulation by GSK-3/β-TrCP. These pathways include those activated by ligands of tyrosine kinase, G protein-coupled, metabotropic, and ionotropic receptors that activate phosphatidyl inositol 3-kinase (PI3K)/ATK and by the canonical WNT signaling pathway, where a fraction of NRF2 interacts with Axin1/GSK-3. Considering that free NRF2 protein is localized in the nucleus, we propose a model termed "double flux controller" to explain how KEAP1 and β-TrCP coordinate the stability of NRF2 in several scenarios. The GSK-3/β-TrCP axis provides a novel therapeutic strategy to modulate NRF2 activity. © 2015 Elsevier Inc.

Ugeda M.M.,Autonomous University of Madrid | Brihuega I.,Autonomous University of Madrid | Guinea F.,CSIC - Institute of Materials Science | Gomez-Rodriguez J.M.,Autonomous University of Madrid
Physical Review Letters | Year: 2010

Atomic vacancies have a strong impact in the mechanical, electronic, and magnetic properties of graphenelike materials. By artificially generating isolated vacancies on a graphite surface and measuring their local density of states on the atomic scale, we have shown how single vacancies modify the electronic properties of this graphenelike system. Our scanning tunneling microscopy experiments, complemented by tight-binding calculations, reveal the presence of a sharp electronic resonance at the Fermi energy around each single graphite vacancy, which can be associated with the formation of local magnetic moments and implies a dramatic reduction of the charge carriers' mobility. While vacancies in single layer graphene lead to magnetic couplings of arbitrary sign, our results show the possibility of inducing a macroscopic ferrimagnetic state in multilayered graphene just by randomly removing single C atoms. © 2010 The American Physical Society.

Seijo L.,Autonomous University of Madrid | Barandiaran Z.,Autonomous University of Madrid
Physical Chemistry Chemical Physics | Year: 2014

Ab initio embedded cluster calculations on Ce3+-doped Y 3Al5O12, Lu3Al5O 12, Gd3Al5O12, Y3Ga 5O12, Lu3Ga5O12, and Gd3Ga5O12, which do not make use of any adjustable parameter, support recent assignments of the seventh 4f level of Ce3+ in garnets [Przybylińska et al., Appl. Phys. Lett., 2013, 102, 241112] and that the splitting of the 4f shell of Ce3+ in these materials is slightly smaller than 4000 cm-1 and much larger than the 2000-2500 cm-1 commonly assumed in analyses of 5d → 4f emission bands. Why this wrong assumption has been working well so far is explained by the fact that the intensity of the emission to the seventh level of the 4f1 configuration is found to be only one hundredth of the integrated intensity of the emissions to the other six levels, which group themselves into two sets of three individual levels separated by 2000-2500 cm-1. The effective field splitting and the spin-orbit coupling splitting are found to be of the same size. From a strong field coupling point of view, the first six levels result from the interactions between 2T2u and 2T1u cubic levels and the higher, isolated seventh level comes directly from the cubic 2A 2u. From a weak field coupling point of view, the first three levels result from the splitting of 2F5/2, the second three levels from the splitting of 2F7/2 and the seventh level from a strong, cubic field driven interaction between 2F 7/2 and 2F5/2 components [Herrmann et al., J. Appl. Phys., 1966, 37, 1312]. © 2014 the Owner Societies.

Beltran J.,Autonomous University of Madrid | Flores F.,Autonomous University of Madrid | Ortega J.,Autonomous University of Madrid
Physical Chemistry Chemical Physics | Year: 2014

Understanding the mechanism of energy level alignment at organic-organic interfaces is a crucial line of research to optimize applications in organic electronics. We address this problem for the C60-pentacene interface by performing local-orbital Density Functional Theory (DFT) calculations, including the effect of the charging energies on the energy gap of both organic materials. The results are analyzed within the induced density of interface states (IDIS) model. We find that the induced interface potential is in the range of 0.06-0.10 eV, in good agreement with the experimental evidence, and that such potential is mainly induced by the small, but non-negligible, charge transfer between the two compounds and the multipolar contribution associated with pentacene. We also suggest that an appropriate external intercompound potential could create an insulator-metal transition at the interface. This journal is © 2014 the Owner Societies.

Aguey-Zinsou K.-F.,University of New South Wales | Ares-Fernandez J.-R.,Autonomous University of Madrid
Energy and Environmental Science | Year: 2010

Storing hydrogen in materials is based on the observation that metals can reversibly absorb hydrogen. However, the practical application of such a finding is found to be rather challenging especially for vehicular applications. The ideal material should reversibly store a significant amount of hydrogen under moderate conditions of pressures and temperatures. To date, such a material does not exist, and the high expectations of achieving the scientific discovery of a suitable material simultaneously with engineering innovations are out of reach. Of course, major breakthroughs have been achieved in the field, but the most promising materials still bind hydrogen too strongly and often suffer from poor hydrogen kinetics and/or lack of reversibility. Clearly, new approaches have to be explored, and the knowledge gained with high-energy ball milling needs to be exploited, i.e. size does matter! Herein, progress made towards the practical use of magnesium as a hydrogen store and the barriers still remaining are reviewed. In this context, the new approach of tailoring the properties of metal hydrides through size restriction at the nanoscale is discussed. Such an approach already shows great promise in leading to further breakthroughs because both thermodynamics and kinetics can be effectively controlled at molecular levels. © 2010 The Royal Society of Chemistry.

Catalan J.,Autonomous University of Madrid
Physical Chemistry Chemical Physics | Year: 2014

A thorough analysis of the absorption and emission spectra of p-dimethylaminobenzonitrile (DMABN) in ethyl acetate, diethyl ether, 1-chlorobutane, dichloromethane and trimethyl phosphate recorded at both 298 K and the melting point of each solvent allowed us to examine the corresponding emission excitation spectra by monitoring light across the dual fluorescence emission for DMABN. Based on its excitation spectra, DMABN forms charge transfer structures in solvents with a dipolarity exceeding 0.9 on the SdP (solvent dipolarity) scale that can be directly excited to a TICT structure from their ground electronic state. These results contradict the widespread assumptions made about the photophysics of DMABN over the past fifty years. © 2014 the Partner Organisations.

Camara P.G.,University of Barcelona | Ibanez L.E.,Autonomous University of Madrid | Valenzuela I.,Autonomous University of Madrid
Journal of High Energy Physics | Year: 2014

Closed string fluxes induce generically SUSY-breaking soft terms on supersymmetric type IIB orientifold compactifications with D3/D7 branes. This was studied in the past by inserting those fluxes on the DBI+CS actions for adjoint D3/D7 fields, where D7-branes had no magnetic fluxes. In the present work we generalise those computations to the phenomenologically more relevant case of chiral bi-fundamental fields laying at 7-brane intersections and F-theory local matter curves. We also include the effect of 7-brane magnetic flux as well as more general closed string backgrounds, including the effect of distant D3(D3̄)-branes. We discuss several applications of our results. We find that squark/slepton masses become in general flux-dependent in F-theory GUT's. Hypercharge-dependent non-universal scalar masses with a characteristic sfermion hierarchy m E 2 ∈< m L 2 ∈< m Q 2 ∈< m D 2 ∈< m U 2 are obtained. There are also flavor-violating soft terms both for matter fields living at intersecting 7-branes or on D3-branes at singularities. They point at a very heavy sfermion spectrum to avoid FCNC constraints. We also discuss the possible microscopic description of the fine-tuning of the EW Higgs boson in compactifications with a MSSM spectrum. © 2014 The Author(s).

Dominguez G.,Autonomous University of Madrid
Journal of Pathology | Year: 2013

The sequential accumulation of genetic alterations has been classically considered responsible for the origin and subsequent progression of colorectal cancer, although recent cumulative data provide strong evidence of the significance of epigenetic changes in the development of this multi-step malignancy. Among the epigenetic alterations, miRNAs deregulation has emerged as an exciting and promising field in cancer research. In a recent issue of the Journal of Pathology, Wang and colleagues identify miR-149 as being silenced by methylation in colorectal cancer. The authors also identified Sp1 as a target of miR-149. These intriguing observations have important biological prognostic and therapeutic implications. Copyright © 2012 Pathological Society of Great Britain and Ireland. Published by John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.

Robledo L.M.,Autonomous University of Madrid
Journal of Physics G: Nuclear and Particle Physics | Year: 2010

I discuss the inadequacy of the 'projected density' prescription to be used in density-dependent forces/functionals when calculations beyond mean field are pursued. The case of calculations aimed at the symmetry restoration of mean fields obtained with effective realistic forces of the Skyrme or Gogny type is considered in detail. It is shown that, at least for the restoration of spatial symmetries like rotations, translations or parity, the above prescription yields catastrophic results for the energy that drive the intrinsic wave-function to configurations with infinite deformation, thereby preventing its use both in projection after and before variation. © 2010 IOP Publishing Ltd.

Munoz M.,Autonomous University of Madrid | de Pedro Z.M.,Autonomous University of Madrid | Casas J.A.,Autonomous University of Madrid | Rodriguez J.J.,Autonomous University of Madrid
Journal of Hazardous Materials | Year: 2011

Homogeneous Fenton-like (H2O2/Fe3+) oxidation proved to be highly efficient in the degradation of monochlorophenols but some important issues need to be considered depending on the operating conditions. When using the stoichiometric amount of H2O2 and a dose of Fe3+ in the range of 10-20mg/L, complete breakdown of 4-CP up to CO2 and short-chain acids was achieved. Nevertheless, when substoichiometric amounts of H2O2 or lower concentrations of iron were used, significant differences between the TOC measured and the calculated from the identified species were found. These differences were attributed to condensation byproducts, including chlorinated species, formed by oxidative coupling reactions. PCBs, dioxins and dichlorodiphenyl ethers were identified. A solid residue was also formed consisting mainly in carbon, oxygen and chlorine including also Fe. The occurrence of these highly toxic species must be carefully considered in the application of Fenton oxidation to wastewaters containing chlorophenols. The possibility of reducing costs by lowering the H2O2 dose below the stoichiometric one needs to tke this into account. © 2011 Elsevier B.V.

De Carlos B.,University of Southampton | Guarino A.,Autonomous University of Madrid | Moreno J.M.,Autonomous University of Madrid
Journal of High Energy Physics | Year: 2010

We perform a complete classification of the flux-induced 12d algebras compatible with the set of N = 1 type II orientifold models that are T-duality invariant, and allowed by the symmetries of the T 6/(ℤ 2 × ℤ 2) isotropic orbifold. The classification is performed in a type IIB frame, where only H̄ 3 and Q fluxes are present. We then study no-go theorems, formulated in a type IIA frame, on the existence of Minkowski/de Sitter (Mkw/dS) vacua. By deriving a dictionary between the sources of potential energy in types IIB and IIA, we are able to combine algebra results and no-go theorems. The outcome is a systematic procedure for identifying phenomenologically viable models where Mkw/dS vacua may exist. We present a complete table of the allowed algebras and the viability of their resulting scalar potential, and we point at the models which stand any chance of producing a fully stable vacuum. © SISSA 2010.

Robledo L.M.,Autonomous University of Madrid
Physical Review C - Nuclear Physics | Year: 2010

Two-body matrix elements of arbitrary local interactions are written as the sum of separable terms in a way that is well suited for the exchange and pairing channels present in mean-field calculations. The expansion relies on the transformation to center of mass and relative coordinate (in the spirit of Talmi's method) and therefore it is only useful (finite number of expansion terms) for harmonic oscillator single particle states. The converge of the expansion with the number of terms retained is studied for a Gaussian two body interaction. The limit of a contact (delta) force is also considered. Ways to handle the general case are also discussed. © 2010 The American Physical Society.

Nieto-Vesperinas M.,CSIC - Institute of Materials Science | Saenz J.J.,Autonomous University of Madrid | Saenz J.J.,Donostia International Physics Center
Optics Letters | Year: 2010

We report the first study on the optical force exerted by an evanescent wave on a small sphere with both electric and magnetic responses to the incident field, immersed in an arbitrary nondissipative medium. New expressions and effects from their gradient, radiation pressure, and curl components are obtained owing to the particle induced electric and magnetic dipoles, as well as to their mutual interaction. We predict possible dramatic changes in the force depending on the host medium, the polarization, and the nature of the surface wave. © 2010 Optical Society of America.

Gonzalez-Tudela A.,Autonomous University of Madrid | Martin-Cano D.,Autonomous University of Madrid | Moreno E.,Autonomous University of Madrid | Martin-Moreno L.,University of Zaragoza | And 2 more authors.
Physical Review Letters | Year: 2011

We investigate qubit-qubit entanglement mediated by plasmons supported by one-dimensional waveguides. We explore both the situation of spontaneous formation of entanglement from an unentangled state and the emergence of driven steady-state entanglement under continuous pumping. In both cases, we show that large values for the concurrence are attainable for qubit-qubit distances larger than the operating wavelength by using plasmonic waveguides that are currently available. © 2011 The American Physical Society.

Tejero R.,Autonomous University of Madrid | Ponce A.,Autonomous University of Madrid | Adrio J.,Autonomous University of Madrid | Carretero J.C.,Autonomous University of Madrid
Chemical Communications | Year: 2013

A variety of cycloheptapyrane derivatives were prepared via Ni-catalyzed formal [8+3] cycloaddition of tropones with 1,1-cyclopropanediesters. The asymmetric version of the process can be achieved using either an enantiomerically enriched cyclopropane as the starting material or a racemic cyclopropane and a chiral Lewis acid. © 2013 The Royal Society of Chemistry.

Hernandez-Torres G.,Scripps Research Institute | Hernandez-Torres G.,Autonomous University of Madrid | Tan B.,Scripps Research Institute | Barbas C.F.,Scripps Research Institute
Organic Letters | Year: 2012

Organocatalytic stereospecific dibromination of a wide variety of functionalized alkenes was achieved using a stable, inexpensive halogen source, 1,3-dibromo 5,5-dimethylhydantoin, and a simple thiourea catalyst at room temperature. The presence of a tertiary amine enhanced the rate of the dibromination reaction, and yields were good in various solvents, including aqueous solvents. The procedure was extended to alkynes and aromatic rings and to dichlorination reactions by using the 1,3-dichloro hydantoin derivative. © 2012 American Chemical Society.

Arana-Catania M.,Autonomous University of Madrid | Heinemeyer S.,Institute Fisica Of Cantabria Csic Uc | Herrero M.J.,Autonomous University of Madrid
Physical Review D - Particles, Fields, Gravitation and Cosmology | Year: 2013

We explore the phenomenological implications on charged lepton flavor violating (LFV) processes from slepton flavor mixing within the Minimal Supersymmetric Standard Model (MSSM). We work under the model-independent hypothesis of general flavor mixing in the slepton sector, being parametrized by a complete set of dimensionless δijAB (A, B=L, R; i, j=1, 2, 3, i≠j) parameters. The present upper bounds on the most relevant LFV processes, together with the requirement of compatibility in the choice of the MSSM parameters with the recent LHC and (g-2)μ data, lead to updated constraints on all slepton flavor mixing parameters. A comparative discussion of the most effective LFV processes to constrain the various generation mixings is included. © 2013 American Physical Society.

Martinez-Martin D.,Autonomous University of Madrid | Herruzo E.T.,CSIC - National Center of Microelectronics | Dietz C.,CSIC - National Center of Microelectronics | Gomez-Herrero J.,Autonomous University of Madrid | Garcia R.,CSIC - National Center of Microelectronics
Physical Review Letters | Year: 2011

Mapping of the protein structural flexibility with sub-2-nm spatial resolution in liquid is achieved by combining bimodal excitation and frequency modulation force microscopy. The excitation of two cantilever eigenmodes in dynamic force microscopy enables the separation between topography and flexibility mapping. We have measured variations of the elastic modulus in a single antibody pentamer from 8 to 18 MPa when the probe is moved from the end of the protein arm to the central protrusion. Bimodal dynamic force microscopy enables us to perform the measurements under very small repulsive loads (30-40 pN). © 2011 American Physical Society.

Alcaraz F.C.,University of Sao Paulo | Berganza M.I.,Autonomous University of Madrid | Sierra G.,Autonomous University of Madrid
Physical Review Letters | Year: 2011

In a quantum critical chain, the scaling regime of the energy and momentum of the ground state and low-lying excitations are described by conformal field theory (CFT). The same holds true for the von Neumann and Rényi entropies of the ground state, which display a universal logarithmic behavior depending on the central charge. In this Letter we generalize this result to those excited states of the chain that correspond to primary fields in CFT. It is shown that the nth Rényi entropy is related to a 2n-point correlator of primary fields. We verify this statement for the critical XX and XXZ chains. This result uncovers a new link between quantum information theory and CFT. © 2011 American Physical Society.

Gonzalez-Esguevillas M.,Autonomous University of Madrid | Adrio J.,Autonomous University of Madrid | Carretero J.C.,Autonomous University of Madrid
Chemical Communications | Year: 2013

A catalytic highly enantioselective silver-DTBM-segphos catalyzed cycloaddition of α-iminoesters with alkylidene azlactones is reported. This procedure provides an effective access to 4-aminopyrrolidine-2,4- dicarboxylate derivatives with high diastereo- and enantioselectivity. © The Royal Society of Chemistry 2013.

Polo-Cavia N.,Autonomous University of Madrid | Polo-Cavia N.,CSIC - Doñana Biological Station | Gomez-Mestre I.,CSIC - Doñana Biological Station
Functional Ecology | Year: 2014

Alien predators are one of the major causes for rapid decline and extinction of native species, because they often create novel ecological contexts in which the antipredatory responses of native organisms are no longer fit. Although larval amphibians are often capable of innately responding to chemical cues from local predators through changes in morphology and behaviour, naïve tadpoles generally cannot recognize introduced predators with which they have not shared an evolutionary past. However, in a few documented cases, aquatic organisms have been observed to alter morphology or behaviour in response to alien predators. Such a response may have evolved as adaptive recognition, increasing their repertoire of innate responses to include the novel predator or may have evolved as the prey's ability to learn new threats by association with conspecific alarm cues. The red swamp crayfish, Procambarus clarkii, is a harmful invasive species in aquatic systems world-wide, causing great ecological impact on native amphibian populations during the last decades through intense predation of eggs and tadpoles. We demonstrate that naïve tadpoles of the western spadefoot toad, Pelobates cultripes, are not capable of innately recognizing water-borne predator cues from the red swamp crayfish. Nevertheless, we demonstrate that P. cultripes tadpoles can learn to recognize the cues of the invasive predatory crayfish as a threat when they are exposed to predator cues combined with conspecific alarm cues. Finally, we show that tadpoles conditioned by joint exposure to crayfish and alarm cues enjoy higher survival during predation trials with invasive crayfish. Learning to recognize a newly introduced predator through association with conspecific alarm cues may allow successful generalization of antipredatory responses by tadpoles. This cognitive ability of tadpoles may contribute to reduce their vulnerability to alien predators and soothe the impact of invasions in natural populations. © 2013 The Authors. Functional Ecology © 2013 British Ecological Society.

Herrero P.,Autonomous University of Madrid
Peptides | Year: 2012

An important question in contemporary sensory neuroscience is how animals perceive their environment and make appropriate behavioral choices based on chemical perceptions. The fruit fly Drosophila melanogaster exhibits robust tastant and odor-evoked behaviors. Understanding how the gustatory and olfactory systems support the perception of these contact and volatile chemicals and translate them into appropriate attraction or avoidance behaviors has made an unprecedented contribution to our knowledge of the organization of chemosensory systems. In this review, I begin by describing the receptors and signaling mechanisms of the Drosophila gustatory and olfactory systems and then highlight their involvement in the control of simple and complex behaviors. The topics addressed include feeding behavior, learning and memory, navigation behavior, neuropeptide modulation of chemosensory behavior, and I conclude with a discussion of recent work that provides insight into pheromone signaling pathways. © 2012 Elsevier Inc.

Sastre J.,Autonomous University of Madrid | Sastre J.,CIBER ISCIII | Mosges R.,University of Cologne
Journal of Investigational Allergology and Clinical Immunology | Year: 2012

The safety and efficacy of intranasal corticosteroids (INCs) are well established for the management of allergic rhinitis, rhinosinusitis, and nasal polyps. As seen in numerous studies, INCs demonstrate markedly reduced systemic bioavailability compared with oral and even inhaled corticosteroids and have shown an excellent safety profile over 3 decades of use. Nonetheless, concerns remain among some prescribers and patients that these agents may reach the systemic circulation in sufficient concentration to produce adverse effects (AEs). Available evidence does not support these concerns. A review of the published literature indicates that the side effect profiles of INCs consist primarily of a low incidence of mostly mild and often transient local AEs, such as nasal irritation and epistaxis. The second-generation INC agents currently in use (mometasone furoate nasal spray, fluticasone propionate, ciclesonide, and fluticasone furoate) have favorable pharmacokinetic characteristics that further minimize systemic bioavailability (<1%) compared with older INCs and compared with oral agents, thereby limiting the risk for systemic adverse events. © 2012 Esmon Publicidad.

Tan B.,Scripps Research Institute | Hernandez-Torres G.,Scripps Research Institute | Hernandez-Torres G.,Autonomous University of Madrid | Barbas III C.F.,Scripps Research Institute
Angewandte Chemie - International Edition | Year: 2012

Amide nucleophiles on demand: Rationally designed pyrazoleamides function as Michael donors in urea-catalyzed asymmetric Michael reactions with excellent chemical and optical yields (see scheme). The pyrazoleamide group performs as an ester equivalent, a directing group, an activating group, and functions as a good leaving group in further transformations of the product. Copyright © 2012 WILEY-VCH Verlag GmbH & Co. KGaA, Weinheim.

Criado J.I.,Autonomous University of Madrid
Social Science Computer Review | Year: 2012

This article investigates the interoperability of eGovernment policy in the European Union (EU). Are the EU institutions building up regional integration through the interoperability of eGovernment policy? To address this issue, the article analyzes the evolution of interoperability policy making from its inception in 1995 to date. It also outlines the principal implementation instruments deployed by the EU institutions to foster interoperability across member states' public administrations, as well as employing a sample of key case studies to illustrate them. Results confirm the existence of an integrated approach to the interoperability of eGovernment policy fostered at EU level. They also corroborate the utilization of the open method of coordination (OMC) as the governance system operating within this policy field. Finally, and more importantly, this work pinpoints the growing role of interoperability policy for advancing the regional integration process within the multilevel and mutinational governance system epitomized by the EU. © SAGE Publications 2012.

Cubelos B.,Autonomous University of Madrid | Briz C.G.,CSIC - National Center for Biotechnology | Esteban-Ortega G.M.,CSIC - National Center for Biotechnology | Nieto M.,CSIC - National Center for Biotechnology
Developmental Neurobiology | Year: 2015

A number of recent reports implicate the differential regulation of apical and basal dendrites in autism disorders and in the higher functions of the human brain. They show that apical and basal dendrites are functionally specialized and that mechanisms regulating their development have important consequences for neuron function. The molecular identity of layer II-III neurons of the cerebral cortex is determined by the overlapping expression of Cux1 and Cux2. We previously showed that both Cux1 and Cux2 are necessary and nonredundant for normal dendrite development of layer II-III neurons. Loss of function of either gene reduced dendrite arbors, while overexpression increased dendritic complexity and suggested additive functions. We herein characterize the function of Cux1 and Cux2 in the development of apical and basal dendrites. By in vivo loss and gain of function analysis, we show that while the expression level of either Cux1 or Cux2 influences both apical and basal dendrites, they have distinct effects. Changes in Cux1 result in a marked effect on the development of the basal compartment whereas modulation of Cux2 has a stronger influence on the apical compartment. These distinct effects of Cux genes might account for the functional diversification of layer II-III neurons into different subpopulations, possibly with distinct connectivity patterns and modes of neuron response. Our data suggest that by their differential effects on basal and apical dendrites, Cux1 and Cux2 can promote the integration of layer II-III neurons in the intracortical networks in highly specific ways. © 2014 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

Herrero-Beaumont G.,Autonomous University of Madrid | Roman-Blas J.A.,Autonomous University of Madrid
Nature Reviews Rheumatology | Year: 2013

Beneficial effects of bone-acting drugs in osteoarthritis (OA) are increasingly reported, but reliable conclusions regarding their efficacy are hindered by methodological drawbacks in study design. Identifying patients with osteoporotic OA, a phenotype defined by decreased density associated with high remodelling in subchondral bone, might improve the success of bone-directed agents. © 2013 Macmillan Publishers Limited. All rights reserved.

Assessment methods of surface disinfection based on international standards (Environmental Protection Agency, European Norms, etc) do not correspond to hospital reality. New evaluation methods of surfaces disinfection are proposed to choose the most suitable disinfectant to act against clinically relevant microorganisms detected on the surfaces of burn units. 1) “Immediate effect”: 6 products were compared using a glass germ-carrier and 20 recently isolated microorganisms from different patients in the intensive care units. Disinfectants were applied with microfiber cloths. Log10 reductions were calculated for colony forming units produced after 15 minutes of disinfectant application. 2) “Residual effect”: the glass germ-carriers were previously impregnated with one of the studied disinfectants. After a 30-minute wait period, they were then contaminated with 1 microorganism (from the 20 above-mentioned). After 15 minutes, the disinfectant was inhibited and the log10 reduction of colony forming units was assessed. The immediate effect (disinfection and microorganism drag and transfer to the cloth) produced complete elimination of the inoculums for all products used except one (a diluted quaternary ammonium). The average residual effect found on the 20 microorganisms was moderate: 2 to 3 log10 colony forming unit reduction with chlorine dioxide or 0.5% chlorhexidine (and lower with the other products), obtaining surfaces refractory to recontamination, at least, during 30 minutes. Two tests should be performed before advising surface disinfectant: 1) direct effect and 2) residual efficacy. These characteristics should be considered when a new surface disinfectant is chosen. Chlorine dioxide has a similar or better direct effect than sodium hypochlorite and a similar residual effect than chlorhexidine. © 2016 The American Burn Association

Castellano-Hernandez E.,Autonomous University of Madrid | Sacha G.M.,Autonomous University of Madrid
Applied Physics Letters | Year: 2012

A detailed analysis of the electrostatic interaction between an electrostatic force microscope tip and a thin film is presented. By using artificial neural networks, an equivalent semiinfinite sample has been described as an excellent approximation to characterize the whole thin film sample. A useful analytical expression has been also developed. In the case of very small thin film thicknesses (around 1 nm), the electric response of the material differs even for very high dielectric constants. This effect can be very important for thin materials where the finite size effect can be described by an ultrahigh thin film dielectric constant. © 2012 American Institute of Physics.

Sastre J.,Fundacion Jimenez Diaz | Sastre J.,Autonomous University of Madrid
Clinical and Experimental Allergy | Year: 2010

Summary Development and progress made in the field of recombinant allergens have allowed for the development of a new concept in allergy diagnosis, molecular diagnosis (MD), which makes it possible to identify potential disease-eliciting molecules. Microarray-based testing performed with a small amount of serum sample enables clinicians to determine specific-IgE antibodies against multiple recombinants or purified natural allergen components. Performance characteristics of allergens so far tested are comparable with current diagnostic tests, but have to be confirmed in larger studies. The use of allergen components and the successful interpretation of test results in the clinic require some degree of knowledge about the basis of allergen components and their clinical implications. Allergen components can be classified by protein families based on their function and structure. This review provides a brief overview of basic information on allergen components, recombinants or purified, currently available or soon to become commercially available in ImmunoCAP or ISAC ® systems, including names, protein family and function. Special consideration is given to primary or species-specific sensitization and possible cross-reactivity, because one of the most important clinical utility of MD is its ability to reveal whether the sensitization is genuine in nature (primary, species-specific) or if it is due to cross-reactivity to proteins with similar protein structures, which may help to evaluate the risk of reaction on exposure to different allergen sources. MD can be a support tool for choosing the right treatment for the right patient with the right timing. Such information will eventually give clinicians the possibility to individualize the actions taken, including an advice on targeted allergen exposure reduction, selection of suitable allergens for specific immunotherapy, or the need to perform food challenges. Nevertheless, all in vitro tests should be evaluated together with the clinical history, because allergen sensitization does not necessarily imply clinical responsiveness. © 2010 Blackwell Publishing Ltd.

Sanchez A.,Autonomous University of Madrid | De Castro A.,Autonomous University of Madrid | Garrido J.,Autonomous University of Madrid
IEEE Transactions on Industrial Informatics | Year: 2012

Debugging digital controllers for power converters can be a problem because there are both digital and analog components. This paper focuses on debugging digital controllers to be implemented in Field Programmable Gate Arrays or Application Specific Integrated Circuits, which are designed in hardware description languages. Four methods are proposed and described. All of them allow simulation, and two methods also allow emulationsynthesizing the model of the converter to run the complete closed-loop system in actual hardware. The first method consists in using a mixed analog and digital simulator. This is the easiest alternative for the designer, but simulation time can be a problem, specially for long simulations like those necessary in power factor correction or when the controller is very complex, for example, with embedded processors. The alternative is to use pure digital models, generating a digital model of the power converter. Three methods are proposed: real type, float type and fixed point models (in the latter case including hand-coded and automatic-coded descriptions). Float and fixed point models are synthesizable, so emulation is possible, achieving speedups over 20 000. The results obtained with each method are presented, highlighting the advantages and disadvantages of each one. Apart from that, an analysis of the necessary resolution in the variables is presented, being the main conclusion that 32-bit floating point is not enough for medium and high switching frequencies. © 2005-2012 IEEE.

Maestro L.M.,Autonomous University of Madrid | Haro-Gonzalez P.,University of La Laguna | Coello J.G.,University College London | Jaque D.,Autonomous University of Madrid
Applied Physics Letters | Year: 2012

In this work quantum dot fluorescence thermometry, in combination with double-beam confocal microscopy, has been applied to determine the thermal loading of gold nanorods when subjected to an optical excitation at the longitudinal surface plasmon resonance. The absorbing/heating efficiency of low (≈3) aspect ratio gold nanorods has been experimentally determined to be close to 100%, in excellent agreement with theoretical simulations of the extinction, absorption, and scattering spectra based on the discrete dipole approximation. © 2012 American Institute of Physics.

Manzanares M.V.,Autonomous University of Madrid
Current Biology | Year: 2013

A new study reveals that non-muscle myosin II plays a central role in the durotaxis of mesenchymal stem cells, with the two major isoforms, II-A and II-B, being cooperatively required for this cell movement, and serine phosphorylation of the II-A isoform playing a negative role. © 2013 Elsevier Ltd.

Munoz-Rodriguez R.,Autonomous University of Madrid | Bunuel E.,Autonomous University of Madrid | Gareth Williams J.A.,Durham University | Cardenas D.J.,Autonomous University of Madrid
Chemical Communications | Year: 2012

A diethynylxanthene unit is used to tether cyclometallated Pt(ii) and Au(iii) complexes in a geometry that favours interfacial interactions. This leads to protection from non-radiative decay pathways in the Au 2 dimer and to low-energy 'aggregate-like' emission in a closely related Pt 2 dimer, whilst rapid Au-to-Pt energy transfer occurs in the heterodimer. © 2012 The Royal Society of Chemistry.

Solini A.,University of Pisa | Ruilope L.M.,Autonomous University of Madrid
Nature Reviews Cardiology | Year: 2013

Resistant hypertension is highly prevalent, and is the form of arterial hypertension that is most difficult to treat. Many patients diagnosed with this disease do not have resistant hypertension, but rather have mismanaged primary hypertension. In many cases blood pressure can be controlled by directly addressing underlying causes such as primary aldosteronism, obstructive sleep apnoea, or excessive neurogenic stimulation. Clinicians should ensure that appropriate blood-pressure measurements are used to diagnose resistant hypertension, explore a variety of drug combinations, and battle clinical inertia. Patients should comply with medication schedules and dietary modifications. Correction of these factors will greatly diminish the prevalence of 'resistant' hypertension and avoid the consequences of a persistently elevated blood pressure in these patients. © 2013 Macmillan Publishers Limited.

Rodriguez-Merchan E.C.,La Paz University Hospital | Rodriguez-Merchan E.C.,Autonomous University of Madrid
Thrombosis Research | Year: 2013

Arthroscopic synovectomy (AS) of the elbow, while providing similar pain relief to open synovectomy (OS), may place patients at higher risk for recurrence. The primary predictor of outcome is degree of pre-existing degenerative changes within the joint. Regarding haemophilia patients, radiosynovectomy (RS) is the best choice for patients with persistent synovitis of the elbow. In the elbow we recommend a dose of 30-40 megabecquerels (mBq) in children and a dose of 56-74 mBq in adults. If three consecutive RSs with 6 months intervals are ineffective, an AS or OS must be indicated. Synovectomy (by any method) significantly reduces bleeding episodes. Although the dose of radiation of RS is minimal, 0.32 millisieverts (mSv) in children, 0.54 mSv in adults, and neither articular nor systemic neoplastic changes related to RS have been reported so far, all patients must be given opportunity to consider risk/benefit ratios. Radiation dose due to natural sources is 2 mSv per year and the recommended limit for patients (apart from natural sources is 1 mSv per year). My current recommendation is to use RS in children older than 12 years of age. Therefore, in children younger than 12 years of age an AS should be indicated. OS should be reserved for adults requiring radial head excision (due to a severe limitation of pronation-supination) and synovectomy in the same surgical session. © 2013 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

Sanchez-Conde M.A.,Kavli Institute for Particle Astrophysics and Cosmology | Prada F.,Campus of International Excellence UAMCSIC | Prada F.,Autonomous University of Madrid | Prada F.,Institute Astrofisica Of Andalucia Iaa Csic
Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society | Year: 2014

In the standard cold dark matter (CDM) theory for understanding the formation of structure in theUniverse, there exists a tight connection between the properties of darkmatter (DM) haloes, and their formation epochs. Such relation can be expressed in terms of a single key parameter, namely the halo concentration. In this work, we examine the median concentration-mass relation, c(M), at present time, over more than 20 orders of magnitude in halo mass, i.e. from tiny Earth-mass microhaloes up to galaxy clusters. The c(M) model proposed by Prada et al. (2012), which links the halo concentration with the rms amplitude of matter linear fluctuations, describes remarkably well all the available N-body simulation data down to ~10-6 h -1M( microhaloes. A clear fattening of the halo concentration-mass relation towards smaller masses is observed, that excludes the commonly adopted power-law c(M) models, and stands as a natural prediction for the CDM paradigm. We provide a parametrization for the c(M) relation that works accurately for all halo masses. This feature in the c(M) relation at low masses has decisive consequences e.g. for γ -ray DM searches, as it implies more modest boosts of the DM annihilation flux due to substructure, i.e. ~35 for galaxy clusters and ~15 for galaxies like our own, as compared to those huge values adopted in the literature that rely on such power-law c(M) extrapolations. We provide a parametrization of the boosts that can be safely used for dwarfs to galaxy cluster-size haloes. © 2014 The Authors.

Libeskind N.I.,Leibniz Institute for Astrophysics Potsdam | Knebe A.,Autonomous University of Madrid | Hoffman Y.,Hebrew University of Jerusalem | Gottlober S.,Leibniz Institute for Astrophysics Potsdam
Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society | Year: 2014

We examine the angular infall pattern of subhaloes on to host haloes in the context of the large-scale structure. We find that this infall pattern is essentially driven by the shear tensor of the ambient velocity field. Dark matter subhaloes are found to be preferentially accreted along the principal axis of the shear tensor which corresponds to the direction of weakest collapse. We examine the dependence of this preferential infall on subhalo mass, host halo mass and redshift. Although strongest for the most massive hosts and the most massive subhaloes at high redshift, the preferential infall of subhaloes is effectively universal in the sense that it is always aligned with the axis of weakest collapse of the velocity shear tensor. It is the same shear tensor that dictates the structure of the cosmic web and hence the shear field emerges as the key factor that governs the local anisotropic pattern of structure formation. Since the small (sub-Mpc) scale is strongly correlated with the mid-range (∼10 Mpc) scale - a scale accessible by current surveys of peculiar velocities - it follows that findings presented here open a new window into the relation between the observed large-scale structure unveiled by current surveys of peculiar velocities and the preferential infall direction of the Local Group. This may shed light on the unexpected alignments of dwarf galaxies seen in the Local Group. © 2014 The Authors. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the Royal Astronomical Society.

Bullon T.,Autonomous University of Madrid
International Journal of Applied Earth Observation and Geoinformation | Year: 2015

The present research is based on the hypertemporal analysis of a set of 212 images from the NDVI index from January 2003 to March 2012 provided by the medium-resolution sensor MODIS TERRA. The study area is located in the center of the Iberian Peninsula (Spain). The specific objectives of the study are to investigate the rhythms of the annual development of the NDVI of each of the classes, determine the classes that are most sensitive to climatic variability and define the interannual sequences of variation in NDVI with an associated trend analysis. The classes situated in lower-altitude areas are strongly dependent on autumn rainfall and present negative temporal tendencies, and those situated at mountaintops and on upper slopes are correlated with spring-summer temperatures and exhibit stable or positive tendencies © 2014 Elsevier B.V.

Ragoussi M.-E.,Autonomous University of Madrid | Torres T.,Autonomous University of Madrid | Torres T.,IMDEA Madrid Institute for Advanced Studies
Chemical Communications | Year: 2015

Organic, dye-sensitized and perovskite solar cell technologies have triggered widespread interest in recent years due to their very promising potential towards a high solar electricity future. A number of important milestones have marked the roadmap of each sector on the way to today's outstanding performances, but there still remains plenty of scope for further improvement. The most influential landmarks, together with basic concepts and future perspectives, are unraveled in this review. This journal is © The Royal Society of Chemistry 2015.

Hernandez-Lobato D.,Autonomous University of Madrid | Hernandez-Lobato J.M.,University of Cambridge | Dupont P.,Catholic University of Louvain
Journal of Machine Learning Research | Year: 2013

We describe a Bayesian method for group feature selection in linear regression problems. The method is based on a generalized version of the standard spike-and-slab prior distribution which is often used for individual feature selection. Exact Bayesian inference under the prior considered is infeasible for typical regression problems. However, approximate inference can be carried out efficiently using Expectation Propagation (EP). A detailed analysis of the generalized spike-and-slab prior shows that it is well suited for regression problems that are sparse at the group level. Furthermore, this prior can be used to introduce prior knowledge about specific groups of features that are a priori believed to be more relevant. An experimental evaluation compares the performance of the proposed method with those of group LASSO, Bayesian group LASSO, automatic relevance determination and additional variants used for group feature selection. The results of these experiments show that a model based on the generalized spike-and-slab prior and the EP algorithm has state-of-the-art prediction performance in the problems analyzed. Furthermore, this model is also very useful to carry out sequential experimental design (also known as active learning), where the data instances that are most informative are iteratively included in the training set, reducing the number of instances needed to obtain a particular level of prediction accuracy. © 2013 Daniel Hernández-Lobato, José Miguel Hernández-Lobato and Pierre Dupont.

Argenti L.,Autonomous University of Madrid
Journal of Physics: Conference Series | Year: 2014

Metastable states are important actors in the ionisation of atoms and molecules. Sub-femtosecond extreme ultraviolet pulses can coherently populate several transiently bound states at once, thus starting the attosecond clocks which are required to monitor and control ultrafast electronic evolution above the ionisation threshold. Here we illustrate, from a theoretical point of view, the effects coherent superpositions of 1Po doubly excited states in the helium atom have on channel-resolved photoelectron spectra as well as on the transient absorption spectrum of the atom in the extreme ultraviolet region, when they are created by a single-attosecond pulse in the presence of a strong few-cycle near-infrared/visible pulse which acts as a probe. Interference fringes varying rapidly with the pump-probe time delay are visible in both photoelectron and transient absorption spectra. From such fringes, the wave packet itself can conceivably be reconstructed. Conversely, all observables are modulated by the characteristic beating periods of the wave packet, so that control of partial ionisation yields, branching ratios, and light absorption or amplification can be achieved.

Romacho T.,Paul Langerhans Group of Integrative Physiology | Sanchez-Ferrer C.F.,Autonomous University of Madrid | Peiro C.,Autonomous University of Madrid
Mediators of Inflammation | Year: 2013

Adipose tissue is acknowledged as an endocrine organ that releases bioactive factors termed adipokines. Visfatin was initially identified as a novel adipokine with insulin-mimetic properties in mice. This adipokine was identical to two previously described molecules, namely, pre-B cell colony-enhancing factor (PBEF) and the enzyme nicotinamide phosphoribosyltransferase (Nampt). Enhanced circulating visfatin/Nampt levels have been reported in metabolic diseases, such as obesity and type 2 diabetes. Moreover, visfatin/Nampt circulating levels correlate with markers of systemic inflammation. In cardiovascular diseases, visfatin/Nampt was initially proposed as a clinical marker of atherosclerosis, endothelial dysfunction, and vascular damage, with a potential prognostic value. Nevertheless, beyond being a surrogate clinical marker, visfatin/Nampt is an active player promoting vascular inflammation, and atherosclerosis. Visfatin/Nampt effects on cytokine and chemokine secretion, macrophage survival, leukocyte recruitment by endothelial cells, vascular smooth muscle inflammation and plaque destabilization make of this adipokine an active factor in the development and progression of atherosclerosis. Further research is required to fully understand the mechanisms mediating the cellular actions of this adipokine and to better characterize the factors regulating visfatin/Nampt expression and release in all these pathologic scenarios. Only then, we will be able to conclude whether visfatin/Nampt is a therapeutical target in cardiometabolic diseases. © 2013 Tania Romacho et al.

Masa-Campos J.L.,Autonomous University of Madrid | Sierra-Perez M.,Technical University of Madrid
IEEE Transactions on Antennas and Propagation | Year: 2011

A linearly polarized radial line patch antenna with internal coupling patches is presented. A non-resonant antenna structure has been designed, with a 0.68 lambda;0 radial spacing between element rings. A uniform amplitude and phase feed scheme has been implemented. Therefore, a phase compensation microstrip structure (external to the radial waveguide) has been included for a broadside radiation beam. Likewise, a compensation method has been used to avoid internal reflection problems in the waveguide. An antenna prototype has been built. 28.2 dBi gain and 70% efficiency peak values have been measured at DBS band, with reasonable agreement between simulations and measurements. © 2011 IEEE.

Salas M.L.,Autonomous University of Madrid | Andres G.,Autonomous University of Madrid
Virus Research | Year: 2013

This review summarizes recent structural and molecular biology studies related to the morphogenesis of African swine fever virus (ASFV). ASFV possesses icosahedral morphology and is constituted by four concentric layers: the central nucleoid, the core shell, the inner envelope and the icosahedral capsid. The extracellular virus acquires an external envelope by budding through the plasma membrane. The genes coding for 19 of the 54 structural proteins of the ASFV particle are known and the localization within the virion of 18 of these components has been identified. ASFV morphogenesis occurs in specialized areas in the cytoplasm, named viral factories, which are proximal to the microtubule organization center near the nucleus. Investigations of the different steps of morphogenesis by immunocytochemical and electron microscopy techniques, as well as molecular biology and biochemical studies, have shed light on the formation of the different domains of the virus particle, including the recognition of endoplasmic reticulum membranes as the precursors of the virus inner envelope, the progressive formation of the capsid on the convex face of the inner envelope and the simultaneous assembly of the core shell on the concave side of the envelope, with the pivotal contribution of the virus polyproteins and their proteolytic processing by the virus protease for the development of this latter domain. The use of ASFV inducible recombinants as a tool for the study of the individual function of structural and nonstructural proteins has been determinant to understand their role in virus assembly and has provided new insights into the morphogenetic process. © 2012 Elsevier B.V.

Lopez-Perez R.,Autonomous University of Madrid
Theory and Decision | Year: 2010

Using the machinery of Game Theory, this article analyzes how shame and guilt affect preferences. Based on abundant psychological literature, we posit that the preference ordering of someone who can feel shame (or guilt) must satisfy a number of axioms and prove that it can be represented by a particular utility function. Understanding how shame and guilt work is important to explain why people respect social norms and exhibit prosocial behavior, many times contrary to their material interest. © 2009 Springer Science+Business Media, LLC.

Ruiz-Herrero T.,Autonomous University of Madrid | Velasco E.,Autonomous University of Madrid | Hagan M.F.,Brandeis University
Journal of Physical Chemistry B | Year: 2012

We examine the budding of a nanoscale particle through a lipid bilayer using molecular dynamics simulations, free energy calculations, and an elastic theory, with the aim of determining the extent to which equilibrium elasticity theory can describe the factors that control the mechanism and efficiency of budding. The particle is a smooth sphere which experiences attractive interactions to the lipid head groups. Depending on the parameters, we observe four classes of dynamical trajectories: particle adhesion to the membrane, stalled partially wrapped states, budding followed by scission, and membrane rupture. In most regions of parameter space we find that the elastic theory agrees nearly quantitatively with the simulated phase behavior as a function of adhesion strength, membrane bending rigidity, and particle radius. However, at parameter values near the transition between particle adhesion and budding, we observe long-lived partially wrapped states which are not captured by existing elastic theories. These states could constrain the accessible system parameters for those enveloped viruses or drug delivery vehicles which rely on exo- or endocytosis for membrane transport. © 2012 American Chemical Society.

Gil-Ibanez P.,Autonomous University of Madrid | Morte B.,Autonomous University of Madrid | Bernal J.,Autonomous University of Madrid
Endocrinology | Year: 2013

The effects of thyroid hormones (THs) on brain development and function are largely mediated by the control of gene expression. This is achieved by the binding of the genomically active T3 to transcriptionally active nuclear TH receptors (TRs). T3 and the TRs can either induce or repress transcription. In hypothyroidism, the reduction of T3 lowers the expression of a set of genes, the positively regulated genes, and increases the expression of negatively regulated genes. Two mechanisms may account for the effect of hypothyroidism on genes regulated directly by T3: first, the loss of T3 signaling and TR transactivation, and second, an intrinsic activity of the unliganded TRs directly responsible for repression of positive genes and enhancement of negative genes. To analyze the contribution of the TR subtypes α and β, we have measured by RT-PCR the expression of a set of positive and negative genes in the cerebral cortex and the striatum of TR-knockout male and female mice. The results indicate that TRα1 exerts a predominant but not exclusive role in the regulation of positive and negative genes. However, a fraction of the genes analyzed are not or only mildly affected by the total absence of TRs. Furthermore, hypothyroidism has a mild effect on these genes in the absence of TRα1, in agreement with a role of unliganded TRα1 in the effects of hypothyroidism. Copyright © 2013 by The Endocrine Society.

Silva R.E.F.,Autonomous University of Madrid | Catoire F.,University of Bordeaux 1 | Riviere P.,Autonomous University of Madrid | Bachau H.,University of Bordeaux 1 | And 2 more authors.
Physical Review Letters | Year: 2013

We present a theoretical study of H2+ ionization under strong IR femtosecond pulses by using a method designed to extract correlated (2D) photoelectron and proton kinetic energy spectra. The results show two distinct ionization mechanisms - tunnel and multiphoton ionization - in which electrons and nuclei do not share the energy from the field in the same way. Electrons produced in multiphoton ionization share part of their energy with the nuclei, an effect that shows up in the 2D spectra in the form of energy-conservation fringes similar to those observed in weak-field ionization of diatomic molecules. In contrast, tunneling electrons lead to fringes whose position does not depend on the proton kinetic energy. At high intensity, the two processes coexist and the 2D plots show a very rich behavior, suggesting that the correlation between electron and nuclear dynamics in strong field ionization is more complex than one would have anticipated. © 2013 American Physical Society.

Ruiz-Rodriguez A.,Institute Fermentaciones Industriales | Reglero G.,Autonomous University of Madrid | Ibanez E.,Institute Fermentaciones Industriales
Journal of Pharmaceutical and Biomedical Analysis | Year: 2010

The consumption of dietary fats have been long associated to chronic diseases such as obesity, diabetes, cancer, arthritis, asthma, and cardiovascular disease; although some controversy still exists in the role of dietary fats in human health, certain fats have demonstrated their positive effect in the modulation of abnormal fatty acid and eicosanoid metabolism, both of them associated to chronic diseases. Among the different fats, some fatty acids can be used as functional ingredients such as alpha-linolenic acid (ALA), arachidonic acid (AA), eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA), docosahexaenoic acid (DHA), γ-linolenic acid (GLA), stearidonic acid (STA) and conjugated linoleic acid (CLA), among others. The present review is focused on recent developments in FAs analysis, covering sample preparation methods such as extraction, fractionation and derivatization as well as new advances in chromatographic methods such as GC and HPLC. Special attention is paid to trans fatty acids due its increasing interest for the food industry. © 2009 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

Penel P.,Autonomous University of Madrid | Rivas V.,Autonomous University of Madrid | Salcedo A.,Autonomous University of Madrid | Mayor Jr. F.,Autonomous University of Madrid
Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America | Year: 2010

Cell cycle progression requires changes in the activity or levels of a variety of key signaling proteins. G protein-coupled receptor kinase 2 (GRK2) plays a central role in G protein-coupled receptor regulation. Recent research is uncovering its involvement in additional cellular functions, but the potential role of GRK2 in the cell cycle has not been addressed. We report that GRK2 protein levels are transiently down-regulated during the G2/M transition by a mechanism involving CDK2-mediated phosphorylation of GRK2 at Serine670, which triggers binding to the prolyl-isomerase Pin1 and subsequent degradation. Prevention of GRK2 phosphorylation at S670 impedes normal GRK2 down-regulation and markedly delays cell cycle progression. Interestingly, we find that endogenous GRK2 down-regulation is prevented on activation of the G2/M checkpoint by doxorubicin and that stabilized GRK2 levels in such conditions inversely correlate with the p53 response and the induction of apoptosis, suggesting that GRK2 participates in the regulatory network controlling cell cycle arrest and survival in such conditions.

Esteban J.,Autonomous University of Madrid | Cordero-Ampuero J.,Autonomous University of Madrid
Expert Opinion on Pharmacotherapy | Year: 2011

Introduction: Despite being relatively infrequent, prosthetic joint infections are a devastating medical complication. However, recent advances in surgical techniques, new antibiotics, and knowledge about pathogenic mechanisms have improved the outcome for affected patients. Areas covered: We have analyzed recent advances in pathogenesis, medical and surgical therapy of prosthetic joint infections, with special focus on new antibiotics useful for this disease. Recent studies focused on the important role of biofilms and intracellular bacteria in the pathogenesis of biomaterial-related infections. These advances must guide the management of the patients. Together with more classical antibiotics, linezolid and daptomycin have shown their usefulness for the treatment of these infections. Recently developed lipoglycopeptides have the potential to be used for these infections. In this sense, the possibility of treating patients with oral antibiotics without lack of efficacy is of great interest. Expert opinion: Individualized therapies that take into account the microbial etiology, pathogenesis of the disease, antimicrobial susceptibility, and efficacy of antibiotics against biofilms and intracellular organisms make it possible to treat even those infections caused by multidrug-resistant organisms. A multidisciplinary approach (including a surgeon, infectious diseases specialist and microbiologist) provides the best possible management of patients. © 2011 Informa UK, Ltd.

Prieto-Perez R.,Autonomous University of Madrid
Pharmacogenomics Journal | Year: 2016

Anti-tumor necrosis factor (anti-TNF) drugs are effective against psoriasis, although 20–30% of patients are nonresponders. Few pharmacogenomic studies have been performed to predict the response to anti-TNF drugs in psoriasis. We studied 173 polymorphisms to establish an association with the response to anti-TNF drugs in patients with moderate-to-severe plaque psoriasis (N=144). We evaluated the response using PASI75 at 3, 6 and 12 months. The results of the multivariate analysis showed an association between polymorphisms in PGLYR4, ZNF816A, CTNNA2, IL12B, MAP3K1 and HLA-C genes and the response at 3 months. Besides, the results for polymorphisms in IL12B and MAP3K1 were replicated at 6 months. We also obtained significant results for IL12B polymorphism at 1 year. Moreover, polymorphisms in FCGR2A, HTR2A and CDKAL1 were significant at 6 months. This is the first study to show an association with these polymorphisms. However, these biomarkers should be validated in large-scale studies before implementation in clinical practice.The Pharmacogenomics Journal advance online publication, 27 September 2016; doi:10.1038/tpj.2016.64. © 2016 Macmillan Publishers Limited, part of Springer Nature.

Calvet-Mir L.,Autonomous University of Barcelona | Gomez-Baggethun E.,Autonomous University of Barcelona | Gomez-Baggethun E.,Autonomous University of Madrid | Reyes-Garcia V.,Autonomous University of Barcelona
Ecological Economics | Year: 2012

Interest in ecosystem services provided by agroecosystems has grown over the last decades with research focusing on the type of environmental, economic and social benefits delivered by agroecosystems. Researchers suggest that, besides the provisioning of food, fuel, and fiber, agroecosystems provide habitat, cultural, and regulating services. One type of agroecosystem that remains relatively unexplored from an ecosystem service perspective is home gardens. In this paper, we aim at advancing the understanding of the value of home gardens by conducting an assessment of home gardens ecosystem services. For the empirical analysis we use home gardens in Vall Fosca (Catalan Pyrenees). We identify and characterize the most important ecosystem services provided by home gardens, and conduct a valuation of the social importance of home garden ecosystem services. The methodological approach for this work included an in-depth literature review, participant observation, semi-structured interviews, a valuation questionnaire, and a scientific panel consultation. We identified and characterized 19 ecosystem functions and related services. According to our informants, home gardens provide a large set of ecosystem services, being cultural services the category most valued. We found that the most important ecosystem services provided by home gardens differ from those provided by other types of agroecosystems. © 2011 Elsevier B.V.

Lozano G.,Autonomous University of Madrid | Martinez-Salas E.,Autonomous University of Madrid
Current Opinion in Virology | Year: 2015

A diverse group of viruses subvert the host translational machinery to promote viral genome translation. This process often involves altering canonical translation initiation factors to repress cellular protein synthesis while viral proteins are efficiently synthesized. The discovery of this strategy in picornaviruses, which is based on the use of internal ribosome entry site (IRES) elements, opened new avenues to study alternative translational control mechanisms evolved in different groups of RNA viruses. IRESs are cis-acting RNA sequences that adopt three-dimensional structures and recruit the translation machinery assisted by a subset of translation initiation factors and various RNA binding proteins. However, IRESs present in the genome of different RNA viruses perform the same function despite lacking conservation of primary sequence and secondary RNA structure, and differing in host factor requirement to recruit the translation machinery. Evolutionary conserved motifs tend to preserve sequences impacting on RNA structure and RNA-protein interactions important for IRES function. While some motifs are found in various picornavirus IRESs, others occur only in one type reflecting specialized factor requirements. This review is focused to describe recent advances on the principles and RNA structure features of picornavirus IRESs. © 2015 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

Martin-Cleary C.,Autonomous University of Madrid | Ortiz A.,Autonomous University of Madrid
Clinical Kidney Journal | Year: 2014

Chronic kidney disease (CKD) is one of the three causes of death that has had the highest increase in the last 20 years. The increasing CKD burden occurs in the context of lack of access of most of the world population to adequate healthcare and an incomplete understanding of the pathogenesis of CKD. However, CKD is not homogeneously distributed. CKD hotspots are defined as countries, region, communities or ethnicities with higher than average incidence of CKD. Analysis of CKD hotspots has the potential to provide valuable insights into the pathogenesis of kidney disease and to improve the life expectancy of the affected communities. Examples include ethnicities such as African Americans in the USA or Aboriginals in Australia, regions such as certain Balkan valleys or Central America and even groups of people sharing common activities or interests such as young women trying to lose weight in Belgium. The study of these CKD hotspots has identified underlying genetic factors, such as ApoL1 gene variants, environmental toxins, such as aristolochic acid and socioeconomic factors leading to nutritional deprivation and inflammation/infection. The CKD hotspots series of CKJ reviews will explore the epidemiology and causes in CKD hotspots, beginning with Australian Aboriginals in this issue. An online map of CKD hotspots around the world will feature the reviewed hotspots, highlighting known or suspected causes as well as ongoing projects to unravel the cause and providing a directory of public health officials, physicians and basic scientists involved in these efforts. Since the high prevalence of CKD in a particular region or population may only be known to local physicians, we encourage readers to propose further CKD hotspots to be reviewed. © 2014 The Author.

Arganda E.,University of Zaragoza | Herrero M.J.,Autonomous University of Madrid | Marcano X.,Autonomous University of Madrid | Weiland C.,Autonomous University of Madrid | Weiland C.,The University of Shimane
Physics Letters, Section B: Nuclear, Elementary Particle and High-Energy Physics | Year: 2016

In this letter we study new relevant phenomenological consequences of the right-handed heavy neutrinos with masses at the O(1)TeV energy scale, working within the context of the Inverse Seesaw Model that includes three pairs of quasi-degenerate pseudo-Dirac heavy neutrinos. We propose a new exotic signal of these heavy neutrinos at the CERN Large Hadron Collider containing a muon, a tau lepton, and two jets in the final state, which is based on the interesting fact that this model can incorporate large Lepton Flavor Violation for specific choices of the relevant parameters, particularly, the neutrino Yukawa couplings. We will show here that an observable number of μτ. jj exotic events, without missing energy, can be produced at this ongoing run of the LHC. © 2015 The Authors.

Catalan J.,Autonomous University of Madrid
Physical Chemistry Chemical Physics | Year: 2012

The two forms of methyl salicylate bearing an intramolecular hydrogen bond (IMHB) are responsible for the three fluorescence emissions produced by this compound on electronic excitation in inert media. Whereas the form possessing an IMHB between its hydroxyl group and ether oxygen undergoes no excited state intramolecular proton transfer (ESIPT) in its first excited electronic state, that with an IMHB involving the carbonyl oxygen exhibits ESIPT with near-unity efficiency. Whereas the former species exhibits standard photophysical behaviour, the latter species exhibits two fluorescence emissions from the same electronic excited state; a photophysical scheme is proposed, which brings together all the available photophysical evidence for methyl salicylate in inert media. © 2012 the Owner Societies.

Potluri L.-P.,University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences | Potluri L.-P.,University of Chicago | de Pedro M.A.,Autonomous University of Madrid | Young K.D.,University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences
Molecular Microbiology | Year: 2012

Escherichia coli cells lacking low-molecular-weight penicillin-binding proteins (LMW PBPs) exhibit morphological alterations that also appear when the septal protein FtsZ is mislocalized, suggesting that peptidoglycan modification and division may work together to produce cell shape. We found that in strains lacking PBP5 and other LMW PBPs, higher FtsZ concentrations increased the frequency of branched cells and incorrectly oriented Z rings by 10- to 15-fold. Invagination of these rings produced improperly oriented septa, which in turn gave rise to asymmetric cell poles that eventually elongated into branches. Branches always originated from the remnants of abnormal septation events, cementing the relationship between aberrant cell division and branch formation. In the absence of PBP5, PBP6 and DacD localized to nascent septa, suggesting that these PBPs can partially substitute for the loss of PBP5. We propose that branching begins when mislocalized FtsZ triggers the insertion of inert peptidoglycan at unusual positions during cell division. Only later, after normal cell wall elongation separates the patches, do branches become visible. Thus, a relationship between the LMW PBPs and cytoplasmic FtsZ ultimately affects cell division and overall shape. © 2012 Blackwell Publishing Ltd.

Carrascoso I.,Autonomous University of Madrid | Sanchez-JIMENEZ C.,Autonomous University of Madrid | Izquierdo J.M.,Autonomous University of Madrid
Biochemical Journal | Year: 2014

TIA (T-cell intracellular antigens)-knockdown HeLa cells show an increase in ribosomes and translational machinery components. This increase correlates with specific changes in translationally up-regulated mRNAs involved in cell-cycle progression and DNA repair, as shown in polysomal profiling analysis. Our data support the hypothesis that a concerted activation of both global and selective translational rates leads to the transition to a more proliferative status in TIA-knockdown HeLa cells. © The Authors Journal compilation © 2014 Biochemical Society.

Aguilar-Cuenca R.,Autonomous University of Madrid | Juanes-Garcia A.,Autonomous University of Madrid | Vicente-Manzanares M.,Autonomous University of Madrid
Cellular and Molecular Life Sciences | Year: 2014

Mechanotransduction encompasses the role of mechanical forces in controlling cell behavior by activating signal transduction pathways. Most forces at a cellular level are caused by myosin II, which contracts and cross-links actin. Myosin II-dependent forces are transmitted through the actin cytoskeleton to molecular endpoints that promote specific cellular outcomes, e.g., cell proliferation, adhesion, or migration. For example, most adhesive and migratory phenomena are mechanically linked by a molecular clutch comprised of mechanosensitive scaffolds. Myosin II activation and mechanosensitive molecular mechanisms are finely tuned and spatiotemporally integrated to coordinate morphogenetic events during development. Mechanical events dependent on myosin II also participate in tumor cell proliferation, invasion, and metastatic dissemination. Specifically, tumor cells alter the mechanical properties of the microenvironment to create favorable conditions for proliferation and/or dissemination. These observations position myosin II-dependent force generation and mechanotransduction at the crossroads between normal development and cancer. © 2013 Springer Basel.

Caurier E.,University of Strasbourg | Nowacki F.,University of Strasbourg | Poves A.,Autonomous University of Madrid
Physics Letters, Section B: Nuclear, Elementary Particle and High-Energy Physics | Year: 2012

We study in this Letter the double beta decay of 136Xe with emission of two neutrinos which has been recently measured by the EXO-200 Collaboration. We use the same shell model framework, valence space, and effective interaction that we have already employed in our calculation of the nuclear matrix element (NME) of its neutrinoless double beta decay. Using the quenching factor of the Gamow-Teller operator which is needed to reproduce the very recent high resolution 136Xe ( 3He, t) 136Cs data, we obtain a nuclear matrix element M 2ν=0.025 MeV -1 compared with the experimental value M 2ν=0.019(2) MeV -1. © 2012 Elsevier B.V.

Machado P.A.N.,Autonomous University of Madrid
Nuclear and Particle Physics Proceedings | Year: 2015

We assess the sensitivity to the lepton CP phase by accelerator and reactor experiments in the near future, characterizing it globally by means of the CP exclusion fraction measure. Such measure quantifies what fraction of the δCP space can be excluded at given input values of θ23 and δCP. For some region of the parameter space, we find that T2K and NOνA combined can exclude about 30%-40% of the δCP space at 3σ with a 5 years running in each neutrino and antineutrino modes. A determination of the mass hierarchy would be possible for a modest portion of the parameter space at 3σ. © 2015 Elsevier B.V.

Galego J.,Autonomous University of Madrid | Garcia-Vidal F.J.,Autonomous University of Madrid | Garcia-Vidal F.J.,Donostia International Physics Center | Feist J.,Autonomous University of Madrid
Physical Review X | Year: 2015

In most theoretical descriptions of collective strong coupling of organic molecules to a cavity mode, the molecules are modeled as simple two-level systems. This picture fails to describe the rich structure provided by their internal rovibrational (nuclear) degrees of freedom. We investigate a first-principles model that fully takes into account both electronic and nuclear degrees of freedom, allowing an exploration of the phenomenon of strong coupling from an entirely new perspective. First, we demonstrate the limitations of applicability of the Born-Oppenheimer approximation in strongly coupled molecule-cavity structures. For the case of two molecules, we also show how dark states, which within the two-level picture are effectively decoupled from the cavity, are indeed affected by the formation of collective strong coupling. Finally, we discuss ground-state modifications in the ultrastrong-coupling regime and show that some molecular observables are affected by the collective coupling strength, while others depend only on the single-molecule coupling constant.

Ramos-Moreno T.,Autonomous University of Madrid | Clasca F.,Autonomous University of Madrid
Brain structure & function | Year: 2014

Inputs to apical dendritic tufts have been considered to be crucial for associative learning, attention and similar ''feedback'' interactions and are located in neocortical layer Ia. Excitatory thalamic projections to apical tufts in layer Ia have been well characterized and their role in the cortical circuit has been emphasized. In addition, the neuropil and the extracellular matrix surrounding apical tufts are highly reactive to GABA and to the glycoprotein Reelin, respectively. Recently it has been shown that the GABA inhibition on apical dendrites can reduce the output of pyramidal cells in layer V, however, the origin of 89% of the symmetric synapses in layer I still remains unknown. In the present study we have systematically analyzed the origin of the GABAergic neuropil in neocortical layer Ia in a qualitative and quantitative manner, and investigated the possible extrinsic origin of the rich extracellular Reelin content of the same layer. We show that the inhibitory inputs in a given spot in layer I come from cortical projections and arise mainly from Martinotti cells located directly under that same spot. Double bouquet and bipolar cells may also project to layer Ia although to a lesser extent and the external globus pallidus and zona incerta provide the remaining inhibitory inputs. Finally, our results suggest that Martinotti cells are also the main source of Reelin in layer Ia. The present data will help in the understanding of the cortical circuit and why it changes in pathological conditions.

Salvio A.,Autonomous University of Madrid
Physics Letters, Section B: Nuclear, Elementary Particle and High-Energy Physics | Year: 2015

We study a simple Standard Model (SM) extension, which includes three families of right-handed neutrinos with generic non-trivial flavor structure and an economic implementation of the invisible axion idea. We find that in some regions of the parameter space this model accounts for all experimentally confirmed pieces of evidence for physics beyond the SM: it explains neutrino masses (via the type-I see-saw mechanism), dark matter, baryon asymmetry (through leptogenesis), solves the strong CP problem and has a stable electroweak vacuum. The last property may allow us to identify the Higgs field with the inflaton. © 2015 The Author.

Lopez-Polin G.,Autonomous University of Madrid | Gomez-Navarro C.,Autonomous University of Madrid | Parente V.,CSIC - Institute of Materials Science | Guinea F.,CSIC - Institute of Materials Science | And 3 more authors.
Nature Physics | Year: 2015

The extraordinary strength, stiffness and lightness of graphene have generated great expectations of its application in flexible electronics and as a mechanical reinforcement agent. However, the presence of lattice defects, unavoidable in sheets obtained by scalable routes, might degrade its mechanical properties. Here we report a systematic study on the elastic modulus and strength of graphene with a controlled density of defects. Counter-intuitively, the in-plane Youngâ €™ s modulus increases with increasing defect density up to almost twice the initial value for a vacancy content of â 1/40.2%. For a higher density of vacancies, the elastic modulus decreases with defect inclusions. The initial increase in Youngâ €™ s modulus is explained in terms of a dependence of the elastic coefficients on the momentum of flexural modes predicted for two-dimensional membranes. In contrast, the fracture strength decreases with defect density according to standard fracture continuum models. These quantitative structure-property relationships, measured in atmospheric conditions, are of fundamental and technological relevance and provide guidance for applications in which graphene mechanics represents a disruptive improvement. © 2014 Macmillan Publishers Limited. All rights reserved.

Borrajo M.,Autonomous University of Madrid | Rodriguez T.R.,Autonomous University of Madrid | Luis Egido J.,Autonomous University of Madrid
Physics Letters, Section B: Nuclear, Elementary Particle and High-Energy Physics | Year: 2015

We present the first calculations of a symmetry conserving configuration mixing method (SCCM) using time-reversal symmetry breaking Hartree-Fock-Bogoliubov (HFB) states with the Gogny D1S interaction. The method includes particle number and tridimensional angular momentum symmetry restorations as well as configuration mixing within the generator coordinate method (GCM) framework. The nucleus 32Mg is chosen to show the performance and reliability of the calculations. Additionally, 01+, 21+ and 41+ states are computed for the magnesium isotopic chain, where a noticeable compression of the spectrum is obtained by including cranked states, leading to a very good agreement with the known experimental data. © 2015 The Authors.

Robledo L.M.,Autonomous University of Madrid
Journal of Physics G: Nuclear and Particle Physics | Year: 2015

The ground state octupole correlation energy is computed with the D1M variant of the Gogny force in different theoretical frameworks and analyzed in detail. First I consider the correlation energy gained at the mean field level by breaking reflection symmetry. Next I consider the energy gain coming from symmetry (parity) restoration and finally I analyze the ground state correlation energy after configuration mixing with axially symmetric octupole states. The impact of the latter on theoretical binding energies indicates that octupole correlations do not affect in a significant way the trend and systematic of binding energies and therefore can not improve the performance of theoretical models in this respect. In particular, the too-large 'shell gaps' predicted by self-consistent mean field models and relevant in astrophysics scenarios are not altered by the octupole correlations. © 2015 IOP Publishing Ltd.

Brinol P.,Autonomous University of Madrid | Demarree K.G.,Texas Tech University | Smith K.R.,Texas Tech University
Behavioral and Brain Sciences | Year: 2010

The embodied simulation of smiles involves motor activity that often changes the perceivers' own emotional experience (e.g., smiling can make us feel happy). Although Niedenthal et al. mention this possibility, the psychological processes by which embodiment changes emotions and their consequences for processing other emotions are not discussed in the target article's review. We argue that understanding the processes initiated by embodiment is important for a complete understanding of the effects of embodiment on emotion perception. © 2010 Cambridge University Press.

Diez-Guerra F.J.,Autonomous University of Madrid
IUBMB Life | Year: 2010

Neurogranin (Ng) (also named RC3, p17 or BICKS) is a small protein originally identified in rat brain and abundantly expressed in several telencephalic areas, such as the cerebral cortex, hippocampus, amygdala, and striatum. In neurons, it is found concentrated at dendritic spines where it participates in synaptic signaling events through the regulation of calmodulin (CaM) availability. Ng features an IQ motif that mediates its interaction with CaM and phosphatidic acid (PA) and that is phosphorylated by protein kinase C (PKC) at serine 36 (Ser36). Ser36-phosphorylated Ng is unable to bind either CaM or PA. Ng knockout mice display an apparently normal phenotype; however, they show severe deficits in spatial and emotional learning and a decrease in LTP induction, mostly due to the attenuation of the signaling that depends on calcium/CaM kinase II (CaMKII), PKC, and protein kinase A (PKA) activation. The present review is an update on the most relevant information about Ng expression, localization, interactions, and modifications as well as on its role in synaptic plasticity. © 2010 IUBMB.

Requena J.M.,Autonomous University of Madrid
Frontiers in Bioscience | Year: 2011

Regulation of gene expression is one of the most intriguing aspects of Leishmania biology. This review deals with current knowledge concerning gene organization and regulation of gene expression in this protozoan parasite, which cause serious illness and death in humans living in tropical and subtropical regions. Post-transcriptional regulation is especially important for Leishmania, and other trypanosomatids, due to the unusual features related to transcription and mRNA maturation. In these organisms, genes are organized into polycistronic transcription units, whereby many genes are cotranscribed by RNA polymerase II from not well characterized, upstream promoters. These organisms represent an extreme in which the expression of their genome is almost exclusively controlled post-transcriptionally. Because the regulatory needs of these parasites are considerable as they undergo complex developmental transitions, post-transcriptional mechanisms that involve RNA and protein regulatory processes are of paramount importance for these protozoa. This review summarizes recent results on the posttranscriptional mechanisms in Leishmania that regulate protein abundance through influencing RNA splicing, nuclear-cytoplasmic mRNA stability, translation, or posttranslational events such as protein stability and modification.

Fernandez-Dols J.-M.,Autonomous University of Madrid | Carrera P.,Autonomous University of Madrid
Behavioral and Brain Sciences | Year: 2010

We question two conceptual assumptions made by Niedenthal et al.: the dichotomy between true and false smiles and the close tie between recognition and experience of emotion. An excessive dependence on everyday language suggests overly parsimonious accounts of a complex set of relations between smile, experience, and context. © 2010 Cambridge University Press.

Delgado-Buscalioni R.,Autonomous University of Madrid | Delgado-Buscalioni R.,Institute for Condensed Matter Physics
Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society A: Mathematical, Physical and Engineering Sciences | Year: 2016

A relatively general thermodynamic formalism for adaptive molecular resolution (AMR) is presented. The description is based on the approximation of local thermodynamic equilibrium and considers the alchemic parameter? as the conjugate variable of the potential energy difference between the atomistic and coarse-grained model θ = U(1)-U(0). The thermodynamic formalism recovers the relations obtained from statistical mechanics of H-AdResS (Espanol et al., J. Chem. Phys. 142, 064115, 2015 (doi:10.1063/1.4907006)) and provides relations between the free energy compensation and thermodynamic potentials. Inspired by this thermodynamic analogy, several generalizations of AMR are proposed, such as the exploration of new Maxwell relations and how to treat λ and F as θ'real' thermodynamic variables. This article is part of the themed issue 'Multiscale modelling at the physics-chemistry-biology interface'. © 2016 The Author(s) Published by the Royal Society. All rights reserved.

Calzada M.J.,Autonomous University of Madrid
Clinical and Translational Oncology | Year: 2010

Inactivation of the von Hippel-Lindau (VHL) tumour suppressor gene is responsible for the development of renal carcinomas, pheochromocytomas and tumours in other organs. The gene product (pVHL) is a central component in the oxygen-sensing pathway through its role in the regulation of the hypoxia-inducible factor (HIF). Loss of pVHL leads to activation of the HIF pathway in normoxia with the concomitant increase in tumour vascularisation due to the up-regulation of pro-angiogenic genes. However, although the role of pVHL in the regulation of HIF has proved to be important for tumour growth, other pVHL functions independent of HIF have been reported and help to explain why loss of VHL leads to renal cancer. Studies aimed to characterise other molecular pathways that shed light on its physiological roles as a gatekeeper gene in kidney and other organs will be very helpful for the development of novel anticancer therapies. © 2010 Feseo.

Espada J.,Autonomous University of Madrid | Esteller M.,Catalan Institution for Research and Advanced Studies | Esteller M.,08907 LHospitalet
Seminars in Cell and Developmental Biology | Year: 2010

Symmetrical methylation of cytosine residues at CpG dinucleotides of the DNA molecule is a central epigenetic and heritable hallmark of the genome. This epigenetic modification of DNA is directly associated with a closed molecular conformation of the chromatin fibre which is, in turn, intrinsically linked to an inactive transcriptional status. Thus, DNA methylation is a major determinant of the functional outcome of the nucleus. Equally important, DNA methylation is also involved in the large-scale maintenance of the nuclear architecture, which is required for proper nuclear function. Densely DNA methylated regions tend to occupy large and discrete regions of the genome and can act as referential structural blocks for building up the whole functional organization of the nucleus. In this context, interpreting the three-dimensional pattern of DNA methylation is crucial to our understanding of the dynamic biology of genomes. © 2009 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

Alarcon B.,Autonomous University of Madrid | Van Santen H.M.,Autonomous University of Madrid
Science Signaling | Year: 2010

The T cell antigen receptor (TCR) serves as a paradigm for how membrane receptors transmit signals to the cytoplasm because it controls many aspects of T cell differentiation and function by detecting atom-sized variations in the quality of the ligand that is recognized. The mechanisms that underlie the different signaling outcomes are unclear. Studies that suggest a ligand-tailored, qualitatively different signal are confronted with evidence that favors a quantitative model, and studies of TCR-dependent T cell differentiation in the thymus are no exception. Mature T cells with an αβ TCR are classified according to two major distinct subsets based on the mutually exclusive presence of the co-receptors CD4 and CD8, which play essential roles in recognition of the major histocompatibility complex (MHC) class II and I ligands, respectively, and in the recruitment of the tyrosine kinase Lck to the TCR complex. Mature CD4+ and CD8+ T cells derive from a common precursor in the thymus, a double-positive (DP) thymocyte, which has both co-receptors. Early signaling models suggested that the differential capacity of CD4 and CD8 to recruit Lck to the TCR underlay lineage decision. A study now shows that differentiation into the CD8+ lineage requires the TCR-induced increased abundance of the tyrosine kinase æ chain-associated protein kinase of 70 kD (Zap70). This finding, together with the known importance of Lck in the determination of CD4+ and CD8 + lineages, enables us to propose that a balance between the activation of these two kinases by the TCR determines lineage decisions. Copyright 2008 by the American Association for the Advancement of Science; all rights reserved.

Garcia-Medel N.,Autonomous University of Madrid
Molecular & cellular proteomics : MCP | Year: 2012

Some HLA class I molecules bind a significant fraction of their constitutive peptidomes in the presence of proteasome inhibitors. In this study, A*68:01-bound peptides, and their parental proteins, were characterized through massive mass spectrometry sequencing to refine its binding motif, including the nearly exclusive preference for C-terminal basic residues. Stable isotope tagging was used to distinguish proteasome-inhibitor sensitive and resistant ligands. The latter accounted for less than 20% of the peptidome and, like in HLA-B27, arose predominantly from small and basic proteins. Under the conditions used for proteasome inhibition in vivo, epoxomicin and MG-132 incompletely inhibited the hydrolysis of fluorogenic substrates specific for the tryptic or for both the tryptic and chymotryptic subspecificities, respectively. This incomplete inhibition was also reflected in the cleavage of synthetic peptide precursors of A*68:01 ligands. For these substrates, the inhibition of the proteasome resulted in altered cleavage patterns. However these alterations did not upset the balance between cleavage at peptide bonds resulting in epitope destruction and those leading to their generation. The results indicate that inhibitor-resistant HLA class I ligands are not necessarily produced by non-proteasomal pathways. However, their generation is not simply explained by decreased epitope destruction upon incomplete proteasomal inhibition and may require additional proteolytic steps acting on incompletely processed proteasomal products.

Garrido L.E.,Autonomous University of Madrid | Abad F.J.,Autonomous University of Madrid | Ponsoda V.,Autonomous University of Madrid
Psychological Methods | Year: 2013