Nijmegen, Netherlands
Nijmegen, Netherlands

Radboud University Nijmegen is a public university with a strong focus on research located in Nijmegen, the Netherlands. Established since 17-10-1923 and situated in the oldest city of the Netherlands, it has seven faculties and enrolls over 19,130 students. Radboud was internationally ranked by QS World University Rankings, and placed at 136th. Wikipedia.


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Patent
Radboud University Nijmegen | Date: 2016-11-17

The present invention provides proteins/genes, which are essential for survival, and consequently, for virulence of Streptococcus pneumoniae in vivo, and thus are ideal vaccine candidates for a vaccine preparation against pneumococcal infection. Further, also antibodies against said protein(s) are included in the invention.


Roelofs K.,Radboud University Nijmegen
Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society B: Biological Sciences | Year: 2017

Upon increasing levels of threat, animals activate qualitatively different defensive modes, including freezing and active fight-or-flight reactions. Whereas freezing is a form of behavioural inhibition accompanied by parasympathetically dominated heart rate deceleration, fight-or-flight reactions are associated with sympathetically driven heart rate acceleration. Despite the potential relevance of freezing for human stress-coping, its phenomenology and neurobiological underpinnings remain largely unexplored in humans. Studies in rodents have shown that freezing depends on amygdala projections to the brainstem (periaqueductal grey). Recent neuroimaging studies in humans have indicated that similar brain regions may be involved in human freezing. In addition, flexibly shifting between freezing and active defensive modes is critical for adequate stress-coping and relies on fronto-amygdala connections. This review paper presents a model detailing these neural mechanisms involved in freezing and the shift to fight-or-flight action. Freezing is not a passive state but rather a parasympathetic brake on the motor system, relevant to perception and action preparation. Study of these defensive responses in humans may advance insights into human stress-related psychopathologies characterized by rigidity in behavioural stress reactions. The paper therefore concludes with a research agenda to stimulate translational animal–human research in this emerging field of human defensive stress responses. © 2017 The Authors.


News Article | May 23, 2017
Site: news.yahoo.com

What happens when you look up and see a ball headed toward you? Without even thinking about it, you flinch. That might be because our brains are constantly living our lives in fast-forward, playing out the action in our head before it happens. Humans have to navigate, and respond to, an environment that is always changing. Our brain compensates for this by constantly making predictions about what’s going to happen, says Mattias Ekman, a researcher at Radboud University Nijmegen in the Netherlands. We’ve known this for a while, but these predictions are usually associative. An example: if you see a hamburger, your brain might predict that there will be fries nearby. In a study published today in the journal Nature Communications, Ekman and other scientists focused instead on how the brain predicts motion. So they used brain scans to track what happened as participants observed a moving dot. First, 29 volunteers looked at a white dot the size of a ping-pong ball. The dot went from left to right and then reversed directions. The volunteers watched the dot for about five minutes while scientists scanned their brains with ultra-fast fMRI. This way, the researchers know what pattern of brain activity was activated in the visual cortex while they watched the dot. After these five minutes, the researchers showed only the beginning of the sequence to the volunteers. Here, the scans showed that the brain “autocompletes” the full sequence — and it does it at twice the rate of the actual event. So if a dot took two seconds to go across the screen, the brain predicted the entire sequence in one second. “You’re actually already trying to predict what’s going to happen,” says Ekman. “These predictions are hypothetical, so in a way you’re trying to generate new memories that match the future.” In fact, “twice as fast as real-time” might not be the actual number because it’s limited by the brain scans, notes Ekman. An electrode placed directly in the brain might find that the rate of compression is even faster. (It’s worth noting here that the brain scan they did use, called fMRI, can sometimes be unreliable. It measures brain activity by recording how blood oxygen levels change, not by directly measuring what’s happening. And sometimes there are false positives, like when one study showed brain activity in a dead salmon.) The study is an interesting blend of research on visual perception and memory, says neuroscientist Arjen Alink, who was not involved in the study. “The results are quite striking, because I would have expected a more subtle result,” he says. “But the effect is not minor.” Of course, events in the real world are a lot more complex than a dot moving across the screen, and that’s the biggest limitation of the study. “It’s difficult to transfer this into the real world because there objects aren’t deterministic and, for example, a car can take a turn,” says Ekman. “So then the question is, is the brain still able to do these more complex predictions?” The next step is to figure out how well the results hold up in real-world scenarios, and what exactly is going on when someone says to look up because a ball is headed our way.


News Article | May 25, 2017
Site: news.yahoo.com

Have you ever wished you had Jedi powers? You might think you’ll never reach the level of wisdom, power, and grace as those noble warriors from a galaxy far, far away, but a new study suggests that we all have at least one Jedi trait built right into our brains. A group of researchers from Radboud University Nijmegen in the Netherlands just published a paper proving that humans have the ability to predict the movement of objects thanks to high-speed visualization techniques that simulate the outcome in our own minds before the movement actually happens. Woah. The study, which was published in Nature Communications, used a simple test consisting of a white dot moving across a black screen. The team used an fMRI to track brain activity, painting a clear picture of the areas of the brain which were observing and learning the pattern. Then, after a short break, the more than two dozen volunteers were hooked back up and shown a similar animation, though this time only the first half of the dot’s movement was displayed. However, fMRI data revealed that the brain was actually simulating the dot’s full path, having learned it earlier, and it was processing that information twice as fast as when shown the full animation. In short, the brains of the test subjects were running their own visual simulation of what it expected to see, predicting the outcome as though it was watching it actually happen. Scientists believe it’s this predictive cognition that aids us in both large and small aspects of everyday life, like catching a dropped set of keys out of midair or knowing exactly when and where a car will pass on the street. Essentially, our brains are predicting these things will happen before they happen, and we’re reacting in sync with that prediction, rather than relying solely on our own concrete observation. If “seeing things before they happen” is indeed a Jedi trait, our brains are clearly big Star Wars fans. See the original version of this article on BGR.com


Patent
Radboud University Nijmegen and DSM IP Assets B.V. | Date: 2017-01-18

The invention is directed to a meniscus prosthesis comprising an arc-shaped meniscus prosthesis body having a main portion (1) comprising a reinforcing part (2) and two end portions (1A, 1B) comprising fixation parts (2A, 2B), wherein the main portion (1) comprises a part made of a first biocompatible, non- resorbable material extending between the two end portions (1A, 1B), wherein the reinforcing part (2) and the fixation parts (2A, 2B) are made of a second biocompatible, non-resorbable material and wherein the reinforcing part (2) extends between the fixation parts (2A, 2B) and wherein the fixation parts (2A, 2B) have a through hole (3A, 3B), the first biocompatible, non-resorbable material has a tensile modulus of at most 100 MPa as determined by ISO 527-1 and the second biocompatible, non-resorbable material has a tensile modulus of at least 01 MPa as determined by ISO 527-1.


Watt F.M.,King's College London | Huck W.T.S.,Radboud University Nijmegen
Nature Reviews Molecular Cell Biology | Year: 2013

The field of stem cells and regenerative medicine offers considerable promise as a means of delivering new treatments for a wide range of diseases. In order to maximize the effectiveness of cell-based therapies-whether stimulating expansion of endogenous cells or transplanting cells into patients-it is essential to understand the environmental (niche) signals that regulate stem cell behaviour. One of those signals is from the extracellular matrix (ECM). New technologies have offered insights into how stem cells sense signals from the ECM and how they respond to these signals at the molecular level, which ultimately regulate their fate. © 2013 Macmillan Publishers Limited. All rights reserved.


Van Bokhoven H.,Radboud University Nijmegen
Annual Review of Genetics | Year: 2011

Mutations in more than 450 different genes have been associated with intellectual disability (ID) and related cognitive disorders (CDs), such as autism. It is to be expected that this number will increase three to fourfold in the next years due to the rapid implementation of innovative high-throughput sequencing technology in genetics labs. Numerous functional relationships have been identified between the products of individual ID genes, and common molecular and cellular pathways onto which these networks converge are beginning to emerge. Prominent examples are genes involved in synaptic plasticity, Ras and Rho GTPase signaling, and epigenetic genes that encode modifiers of the chromatin structure. It thus seems that there might be common pathological patterns in ID, despite its bewildering genetic heterogeneity. These common pathways provide attractive opportunities for knowledge-based therapeutic interventions. © 2011 by Annual Reviews. All rights reserved.


Hoogenboom R.,Radboud University Nijmegen
Angewandte Chemie - International Edition | Year: 2010

Chemical equation presentation. Branching out: Thiol-yne chemistry is emerging as new tool for polymer chemists, as it represents a unique and efficient coupling procedure to create highly branched structures (see scheme). This method can be used to prepare highly functional dendrimers and hyperbranched polymers. © 2010 Wiley-VCH Verlag GmbH & Co. KGaA,.


Summerfield C.,University of Oxford | De Lange F.P.,Radboud University Nijmegen
Nature Reviews Neuroscience | Year: 2014

Sensory signals are highly structured in both space and time. These structural regularities in visual information allow expectations to form about future stimulation, thereby facilitating decisions about visual features and objects. Here, we discuss how expectation modulates neural signals and behaviour in humans and other primates. We consider how expectations bias visual activity before a stimulus occurs, and how neural signals elicited by expected and unexpected stimuli differ. We discuss how expectations may influence decision signals at the computational level. Finally, we consider the relationship between visual expectation and related concepts, such as attention and adaptation. © 2014 Macmillan Publishers Limited. All rights reserved.


Veltman J.A.,Radboud University Nijmegen | Brunner H.G.,Radboud University Nijmegen
Nature Reviews Genetics | Year: 2012

New mutations have long been known to cause genetic disease, but their true contribution to the disease burden can only now be determined using family-based whole-genome or whole-exome sequencing approaches. In this Review we discuss recent findings suggesting that de novo mutations play a prominent part in rare and common forms of neurodevelopmental diseases, including intellectual disability, autism and schizophrenia. De novo mutations provide a mechanism by which early-onset reproductively lethal diseases remain frequent in the population. These mutations, although individually rare, may capture a significant part of the heritability for complex genetic diseases that is not detectable by genome-wide association studies. © 2012 Macmillan Publishers Limited. All rights reserved.

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