Seoul, South Korea
Seoul, South Korea

Seoul National University is a national research university founded in 1946, located in Seoul, the capital of Korea. It is widely considered to be the most prestigious university in the country.The university comprises sixteen colleges and six professional schools, and a student body of about 28,000. It has two campuses in Seoul: the main campus in Gwanak and the medical campus in Jongno. According to data compiled by KEDI, the university spends more on its students per capita than any other university in the country that enrolls at least 10,000.The university holds a memorandum of understanding with over 700 academic institutions in 40 countries, the World Bank, and the country's first ever general academic exchange program with the University of Pennsylvania. The Graduate School of Business offers dual master's degrees with Duke University, ESSEC Business School, and the Peking University, double-degrees at the MIT Sloan School of Management and Yale School of Management, and MBA-, MS-, and PhD-candidate exchange programs with universities in ten countries on four continents. The university's international faculty headcount is 242 or 4% of the total. Nobel laureate Paul Crutzen and Fields Medal recipient Hironaka Heisuke are on the faculty roster. Wikipedia.


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Patent
Seoul National University | Date: 2015-04-17

The present invention relates to a coating composition for an in-vivo implantable prosthesis including a photoinitiator, a crosslinking agent, and a phosphorylcholine (PC) monomer having an acrylate group, a method of coating an in-vivo implantable prosthesis using the coating composition, and a cosmetic prosthesis coated with the crosslinked polyphosphorylcholine. An in-vivo implantable prosthesis coated with crosslinked polyphosphoryicholine may be manufactured by a simple method of applying a coating composition including a photoinitiator, a crosslinking agent, and a phosphorylcholine (PC) monomer having an acrylate group according to the present invention, and then irradiating UV rays. The crosslinked polyphosphorylcholine coating may provide hydrophilicity for the surface and may also remarkably reduce adsorption of proteins and fibroblasts, which may cause side effects such as capsular contracture. Further, the coating has strong enough not to peel off even under stimulation, and therefore, it is maintained under vigorous activity after implantation, thereby being usefully applied to the manufacture of an in-vivo implantable prosthesis with reduced side effects, such as breast prosthesis for cosmetic surgery.


Patent
Seoul National University and Nano Intelligent Biomedical Engineering Corporation Co. | Date: 2016-03-03

The present invention relates to an anticancer composition comprising a peptide that inhibits the proliferation of cancer stem cells present in tumor tissue and that induces apoptosis of such cancer stem cells, and more particularly, to an anticancer peptide that inhibits the activity of NF-B which is overexpressed specifically in cancer stem cells present in tumors.


Patent
Korea University and Seoul National University | Date: 2015-02-17

The present disclosure relates to a composition for imaging atherosclerosis and a method for diagnosing atherosclerosis using the same. The composition for imaging atherosclerosis according to the present disclosure shows excellent atherosclerosis diagnosis accuracy, enables diagnosis of atherosclerosis even for a person with diseases of glucose metabolism such as diabetes and enables effective diagnosis even for atherosclerosis occurring in the brain and heart. In addition, manufacturing cost is low compared with the existing imaging composition for diagnosis of atherosclerosis. Therefore, atherosclerosis can be effectively diagnosed by using the same.


Patent
Seoul National University | Date: 2016-02-19

The present disclosure relates to a composition for enhancing radiation sensitivity including a PI4K isozyme inhibitor as an active ingredient. As the PI4K isozyme inhibitor, a PI4K isozyme-specific siRNA or antiviral agent according to the present disclosure has an excellent effect of enhancing radiation sensitivity such as reducing viability of the cancer cells and radiation resistance during in radiation irradiation and suppressing and delaying DNA damage repair induced by the radiation by inhibiting the PI4K isozyme to be used as a radiation sensitivity adjuvant and an anticancer treatment assisting agent.


Patent
Hyundai Motor Company, Seoul National University and Kia Motors | Date: 2015-11-24

A method for controlling a hybrid vehicle is provided. The method includes setting a driving path of the vehicle based on an input destination and current position and predicting a future speed of the vehicle using information regarding the driving path, environmental information, and driving pattern information of a driver. An optimum power distribution map is derived including an optimum SOC trajectory and a power distribution ratio of the engine and the motor using the predicted future speed. Additionally, engine power and motor power is distributed using the optimum SOC trajectory and a power distribution ratio of the engine and the motor.


Patent
Samsung and Seoul National University | Date: 2016-04-19

Provided is a multi network and method to transmit packets. The multi network includes a mesh network, a tree network, and a network interface connected to the mesh network and the tree network and configured to transmit, through the mesh network and the tree network, a packet generated by a processing unit, of a processing system having plural processing units, at a starting point to a destination point for another processing unit of the processing system and configured to selectively inject the packet into one of the mesh network and the tree network to transmit the packet to the other processing unit.


Disclosed herein is a deformation sensing flexible substrate using a pattern formed of a conductive material. The deformation sensing flexible substrate, using the pattern formed of the conductive material, includes a flexible substrate; and conductive patterns in which conductors including a conductive material are arranged and formed to be contactable and non-contact to each other based on deformation of the flexible substrate.


The present disclosure relates to a 5G or pre-5G communication system to be provided in order to support higher data rates after a 4G communication system, such as an LTE system. A method for receiving buffer status information by an access point in a wireless communication system is provided. In the method, a contention sub-slot and a dedicated sub-slot are determined for each station connected to the access point, a data trigger action frame is generated based on a first element including allocation information on the dedicated sub-slot to be used by a related station in a buffer status report (BSR) phase where each of the stations transmits buffer status information to the access point, the generated data trigger action frame is broadcasted to the stations, and a BSR frame transmitted based on the data trigger action frame is received from each of the stations.


Patent
Samsung and Seoul National University | Date: 2016-09-23

The present disclosure relates to a sensor network, machine type communication (MTC), machine-to-machine (M2M) communication, and technology for internet of things (IoT). The present disclosure may be applied to intelligent services based on the above technologies, such as smart home, smart building, smart city, smart car, connected car, health care, digital education, smart retail, security and safety services. A method for scheduling a packet in a communication node in a communication system is provided. The method includes detecting a parameter value of a parameter related to a delay characteristic that is related to at least one packet; comparing the detected parameter value and a preset threshold parameter value; determining a priority for the at least one packet based on the compared result; and transmitting the at least one packet corresponding to the determined priority.


This invention relates to a metal catalyst, a manufacturing method of the metal catalyst, and an electrochemical reduction method. The metal catalyst is manufactured by a method comprising providing a conductor to one side of an insulator, providing a fluid including a metal ion and an electron mediator to the other side of the insulator and providing a voltage to the conductor. The electrochemical reduction method comprises providing a conductor to one side of an insulator, providing a fluid including reduction material and an electron mediator to the other side of the insulator and providing a voltage to the conductor.


Patent
Samsung and Seoul National University | Date: 2015-04-13

Provided is a multi-pulsed jets generating apparatus including: at least one actuator that generates pulsed jets in a plurality of orifices according to a volume change of a plurality of cavities caused by vibration of at least one diaphragm; and a manifold connected to the at least one actuator so as to generate multi-pulsed jets by receiving the pulsed jets occurring in the plurality of orifices. The velocity and uniformity of the pulsed jets occurring in the plurality of injection ports can be controlled according to vibration phases of a plurality of diaphragms.


Patent
Mando Corporation and Seoul National University | Date: 2016-09-01

According to an embodiment of the present disclosure, a spatial interpolation method for a linear phased array antenna relates to a spatial interpolation method for a linear phased array antenna including a plurality of transmission antenna elements and a plurality of reception antenna elements and includes Step 1 in which the plurality of reception antenna elements receive a reflected wave reflected from a target, Step 2 in which an incidence angle of the reflected wave incident on the plurality of reception antenna elements is estimated using an angle estimation algorithm, Step 3 in which a bad-conditioned antenna element is selected from among the plurality of reception antenna elements, and Step 4 in which a received signal of the bad-conditioned antenna element is compensated for and the incidence angle of the reflected wave incident on the plurality of reception antenna elements is re-estimated using an angle estimation algorithm.


Patent
Samsung and Seoul National University | Date: 2016-05-05

A semiconductor ultraviolet light emitting device includes: a substrate; a buffer layer disposed on the substrate and comprising a plurality of nanorods between which a plurality of voids are formed; a first conductive nitride layer disposed on the buffer layer and having a first conductive AlGaN layer; an active layer disposed on the first conductive nitride layer and having a quantum well including Al_(x)In_(y)Ga_(1-x-y)N (0x+y1, 0y<0.15); and a second conductive nitride layer disposed on the active layer and having a second conductive AlGaN layer, in which the plurality of nanorods satisfy 3.5n()D/5.0, where represents a wavelength of light generated by the active layer, n() represents a refractive index of the plurality of nanorods at a wavelength of , and D represents diameters of the plurality of nanorods.


Patent
Seoul National University and Selvidea Co. | Date: 2015-08-07

In general, embodiments of the present invention relate to a robotic self-filming system. Specifically, the robotic self-filming system includes a base, robot arm, video recording device holder, a video recording device mounted on the video device holder, and a robot control unit. The robot control unit receives video data from the video recording device. Using the video data, the robot control unit detects an object and tracks the object as the object moves freely about the environment. The robotic self-filming system then produces a final video product based on the video data and predefined parameters.


Patent
Seoul National University | Date: 2016-10-27

A semiconductor device includes a semiconductor substrate comprising a group III element and a group V element, and a gate structure on the semiconductor substrate. The semiconductor substrate includes a first region which contacts a bottom surface of the gate structure and a second region which is disposed under the first region. The concentration of the group III element in the first region is lower than that of the group V element in the first region, and the concentration of the group III element in the second region is substantially equal to that of the group V element in the second region.


Patent
Seoul National University | Date: 2016-09-18

Provided are a semiconductor memory device including a capacitor and a method of fabricating the same. The capacitor may include a plurality of contacts that are electrically connected to the switching device, exposed on the top surface of a substrate, and are arranged in a first direction and a second direction different from the first direction, and the first direction and the second direction are parallel to the substrate; mold insulators that are formed on the substrate between the contacts adjacent to one another in the first direction from among the plurality of contacts, are formed to have a predetermined thickness and have a predetermined width in the second direction, and extend in a direction vertical to the substrate; bottom electrodes that have a vertical plate-like structure, are provided on and supported by sidewalls of the mold insulators, and are electrically and respectively connected to the plurality of contacts.


Patent
Seoul National University and Wisconsin Alumni Research Foundation | Date: 2016-03-02

A memory system and a method for the error correction of memory are disclosed herein. The method for the error correction of memory is performed by a memory system including a plurality of memory chips. The method for the error correction of memory may include reading, by a first ECC engine unit included in each of a plurality of memory chips, a chunk including a plurality of data bursts, first parity bits, and position bits from each of the plurality of memory chips; extracting, by the first ECC engine unit, a single data burst having an error from the plurality of data bursts using the position bits; and performing, by the first ECC engine unit, first error correction using the first parity bit corresponding to the extracted error data burst.


Patent
Samsung and Seoul National University | Date: 2016-07-27

A 5th generation (5G) or a pre-5G communication system to support a higher data transmission rate than a system after a 4^(th )generation (4G) communication system such as long-term evolution (LTE) is provided. A method of determining a carrier sense threshold by one source terminal in a wireless communication system is provided. The method includes identifying whether one or more interferer terminals and one or more destination terminals exist for one source terminal, and if the terminals exist, determining a carrier sense threshold of each of the one or more interferer terminals and the one or more destination terminals based on an interference intensity received from the one or more destination terminals and a feedback link margin.


Patent
Seoul National University | Date: 2016-01-14

An organic photodetector includes an anode and a cathode facing each other and an active layer between the anode and the cathode and including a p-type semiconductor and an n-type semiconductor, wherein an energy barrier between the anode or the cathode and the active layer is greater than or equal to about 1.3 eV, a difference between a HOMO energy level of the p-type semiconductor and a LUMO energy level of the n-type semiconductor is greater than or equal to about 0.8 eV.


Patent
Samsung and Seoul National University | Date: 2016-06-16

Provided is a video encoding method including: calculating a difference value between a rate-distortion (R-D) cost of a first coefficient level from among coefficient levels of a sub-block and an R-D cost of a second coefficient level adjacent to the first coefficient level by using a distortion difference calculated by using an integer of the first coefficient level and an integer of the second coefficient level and a rate variation between the first coefficient level and the second coefficient level; selecting one of the integer values of the first and second coefficient levels as a modified value of the first coefficient level based on the difference value; and outputting the modified value of the first coefficient level.


Patent
Samsung and Seoul National University | Date: 2016-06-06

An image encoding method includes generating symbols by performing transformation and quantization according to a transformation block, on a block that performs prediction according to a prediction mode; updating a probability index of a current sub block by using a probability index of a previous sub block among sub blocks included in the transformation block; determining a rate according to a bit length of the current sub block by using the probably index; determining a rate of the transformation block by using rates of the sub blocks; determining a distortion by using a difference between an original image and a reconstruction image according to transformation and quantization; and determining a rate-distortion (R-D) cost by using the distortion and the rate.


Provided is a method of encoding an image, the method including determining a scanning sequence for transforming one or more sub-blocks included in a transformation block to be identical to a sequence of quantizing the one or more sub-blocks; determining a sub-block for transformation from among the one or more sub-blocks according to the determined scanning sequence; and performing transformation by applying one or more transformation matrixes with respect to the sub-block for transformation.


Patent
Seoul National University and Nano Intelligent Biomedical Engineering Corporation Co. | Date: 2017-01-04

The present invention relates to an anticancer composition comprising a peptide that inhibits the proliferation of cancer stem cells present in tumor tissue and that induces apoptosis of such cancer stem cells, and more particularly, to an anticancer peptide that inhibits the activity of NF-kB which is overexpressed specifically in cancer stem cells present in tumors.


Patent
Samsung and Seoul National University | Date: 2017-02-22

A 5^(th) generation (5G) or a pre-5G communication system to support a higher data transmission rate than a system after a 4^(th) generation (4G) communication system such as long-term evolution (LTE) is provided. A method of determining a carrier sense threshold by one source terminal in a wireless communication system is provided. The method includes identifying whether one or more interferer terminals and one or more destination terminals exist for one source terminal, and if the terminals exist, determining a carrier sense threshold of each of the one or more interferer terminals and the one or more destination terminals based on an interference intensity received from the one or more destination terminals and a feedback link margin.


Patent
Seoul National University and Baiksan Co. | Date: 2017-02-22

The present invention relates to a coating composition for an in-vivo implantable prosthesis including a photoinitiator, a crosslinking agent, and a phosphorylcholine (PC) monomer having an acrylate group, a method of coating an in-vivo implantable prosthesis using the coating composition, and a cosmetic prosthesis coated with the crosslinked polyphosphorylcholine. An in-vivo implantable prosthesis coated with crosslinked polyphosphorylcholine may be manufactured by a simple method of applying a coating composition including a photoinitiator, a crosslinking agent, and a phosphorylcholine (PC) monomer having an acrylate group according to the present invention, and then irradiating UV rays. The crosslinked polyphosphorylcholine coating may provide hydrophilicity for the surface and may also remarkably reduce adsorption of proteins and fibroblasts, which may cause side effects such as capsular contracture. Further, the coating has strong enough not to peel off even under stimulation, and therefore, it is maintained under vigorous activity after implantation, thereby being usefully applied to the manufacture of an in-vivo implantable prosthesis with reduced side effects, such as breast prosthesis for cosmetic surgery.


Patent
Seoul National University and Johns Hopkins University | Date: 2017-02-15

The present disclosure relates to a pharmaceutical composition for preventing or treating neurodegenerative diseases, the pharmaceutical composition including a graphene nanostructure as an active ingredient.


Patent
LG Corp and Seoul National University | Date: 2017-04-19

The present application relates to a composite electrolyte membrane and a method for manufacturing the same. The composite electrolyte membrane according to the present application includes: a poly(arylene ether sulfone) copolymer including the repeating unit represented by Chemical Formula 1 and the repeating unit represented by Chemical Formula 2; and a core-shell particle including an inorganic particle core and a basic organic polymer shell.


Kim J.H.,Boramae Medical Center | Kang G.H.,Seoul National University
World Journal of Gastroenterology | Year: 2014

Colorectal cancers (CRCs) with a high level of microsatellite instability (MSI-H) are clinicopathologically distinct tumors characterized by predominance in females, proximal colonic localization, poor differentiation, mucinous histology, tumor-infiltrating lymphocytes, a Crohn's-like lymphoid reaction and a favorable prognosis. In terms of their molecular features, MSI-H CRCs are heterogeneous tumors associated with various genetic and epigenetic alterations, including DNA mismatch repair deficiency, target microsatellite mutations, BRAF mutations, a CpG island methylator phenotype-high (CIMP-H) status, and a low level of genomic hypomethylation. The molecular heterogeneity of MSI-H CRCs also depends on ethnic differences; for example, in Eastern Asian countries, relatively low frequencies of CIMP-H and BRAF mutations have been observed in MSI-H CRCs compared to Western countries. Although the prognostic features of MSI-H CRCs include a favorable survival of patients and low benefit of adjuvant chemotherapy, there may be prognostic differences based on the molecular heterogeneity of MSI-H CRCs. Here, we have reviewed and discussed the molecular and prognostic features of MSI-H CRCs, as well as several putative prognostic or predictive molecular markers, including HSP110 expression, beta2-microglobulin mutations, myosin 1a expression, CDX2/CK20 expression, SMAD4 expression, CIMP status and LINE-1 methylation levels. © 2014 Baishideng Publishing Group Co., Limited. All rights reserved.


Hu C.,University of Maryland College Park | Youn B.D.,Seoul National University | Chung J.,PCTEST Engineering Laboratory
Applied Energy | Year: 2012

State-of-charge (SOC) and capacity estimation plays an essential role in many battery-powered applications, such as electric vehicle (EV) and hybrid electric vehicle (HEV). However, commonly used joint/dual extended Kalman filter (EKF) suffers from the lack of accuracy in the capacity estimation since (i) the cell voltage is the only measurable data for the SOC and capacity estimation and updates and (ii) the capacity is very weakly linked to the cell voltage. The lack of accuracy in the capacity estimation may further reduce the accuracy in the SOC estimation due to the strong dependency of the SOC on the capacity. Furthermore, although the capacity is a slowly time-varying quantity that indicates cell state-of-health (SOH), the capacity estimation is generally performed on the same time-scale as the quickly time-varying SOC, resulting in high computational complexity. To resolve these difficulties, this paper proposes a multiscale framework with EKF for SOC and capacity estimation. The proposed framework comprises two ideas: (i) a multiscale framework to estimate SOC and capacity that exhibit time-scale separation and (ii) a state projection scheme for accurate and stable capacity estimation. Simulation results with synthetic data based on a valid cell dynamic model suggest that the proposed framework, as a hybrid of coulomb counting and adaptive filtering techniques, achieves higher accuracy and efficiency than joint/dual EKF. Results of the cycle test on Lithium-ion prismatic cells further verify the effectiveness of our framework. © 2011 Elsevier Ltd.


Park J.-W.,Korea Institute of Geoscience and Mineral Resources | Song J.-J.,Seoul National University
International Journal of Rock Mechanics and Mining Sciences | Year: 2013

A numerical method to determine the contact areas of a rock joint under normal and shear loads is proposed. The method requires only three-dimensional surface coordinates at the initial stage before shearing, while some disparate materials are inserted between the joint surfaces or particular equipments are adopted for measurement of the contact areas during the test in other conventional methods. The joint surface is modeled as a group of triangular planes, and the contact condition of each plane is examined by calculating the relative displacements of both surfaces from their initial locations. To verify the method, a direct shear test on a rock joint was simulated using a bonded particle model in a discrete element code. The locations of the contact areas observed in the simulation showed good agreement with those determined using the proposed method. To characterize the roughness of the joint surface including the contact area, the concept of 'active and inactive micro-slope angle' was defined based on the apparent inclination of the triangular element to the shear direction. To apply these techniques, the experimental results of shear tests on replicas of rock joints were analyzed for the location, size and micro-slope angle of contact areas according to the following shearing stages: pre-peak, peak, post-peak and residual. The locations of the contact areas were closely correlated with the distribution of the micro-slope angle, which indicates that the joint roughness should be qualified with respect to the shear direction and the corresponding contact area. Additionally, the proposed method was applied to estimation of the distribution of aperture size within a rock joint. © 2012 Elsevier Ltd.


Sancho-Martinez I.,Salk Institute for Biological Studies | Baek S.H.,Seoul National University | Izpisua Belmonte J.C.,Salk Institute for Biological Studies | Izpisua Belmonte J.C.,Seoul National University
Nature Cell Biology | Year: 2012

Lineage conversion has recently attracted increasing attention as a potential alternative to the directed differentiation of pluripotent cells to obtain cells of a given lineage. Different means allowing for cell identity switch have been reported. Lineage conversion relied initially on the discovery of specific transcription factors generally enriched and characteristic of the target cell, and their forced expression in cells of a different fate. This approach has been successful in various cases, from cells of the hematopoietic systems to neurons and cardiomyocytes. Furthermore, recent reports have suggested the possibility of establishing a general lineage conversion approach bypassing pluripotency. This requires a first phase of epigenetic erasure achieved by short overexpression of the factors used to reprogram cells to a pluripotent state (such as a combination of Sox2, Klf4, c-Myc and Oct4), followed by exposure to specific developmental cues. Here we present these different direct conversion methodologies and discuss their potential as alternatives to using induced pluripotent stem cells and differentiation protocols to generate cell populations of a given fate. © 2012 Macmillan Publishers Limited. All rights reserved.


Kim J.,Korea Institute of Geoscience and Mineral Resources | Kang S.,Seoul National University
Journal of Materials Chemistry A | Year: 2014

The stable phase domains of the TiO2-Ti3O 5-Ti2O3-TiO-Ti(CxOy)-TiC system were examined experimentally and using first principles calculations. The stable phase domains before, after, and during (i.e., meta-stable phases) the carbothermal reduction of TiO2 are reported here in detail because this increasingly important reaction has not been systematically studied. Stable phase domains were experimentally assessed from the isothermal study of the reduction of TiO2; the thermodynamic activities and the Gibbs free energies of the formation of TiC and TiO in Ti(CxOy) solid solution phases were calculated using the Gibbs-Duhem equation. The first principles calculations of stable-phase-domain diagrams at different temperatures were used to assess the effects of temperature. Formation energies of the solid solutions were calculated using special quasi-random structures. Zero-point energies and phonon vibration effects were calculated for the solid solutions by density perturbation theory implemented in the Vienna ab initio simulations package. A thorough understanding of the stabilities of the initial, final, and intermediate phases will allow the optimization of synthesis conditions and aid the development of new materials. Therefore, this study is expected to aid the synthesis of titanium oxides, titanium carbides, and their solid solutions for energy storage materials and other useful applications. © 2014 The Royal Society of Chemistry.


Patent
Seoul National University and Center For Integrated Smart Sensors Foundation | Date: 2016-08-31

The present invention relates to an energy supply circuit for instantly supplying power without a power converter and an electronic device which operates only when energy is supplied from an energy source using the same. An energy supply circuit without a power converter according to the present invention comprises: an energy extraction unit 10 for generating power from an energy source; and output unit 20 for supplying power to an external electronic circuit; a switch unit 30 interposed between the energy extraction unit and the output unit 20 to connect an output end of the energy extraction unit 10 to the output unit 20 when switched on; and a maximum power point tracking control unit 40 for generating an open/closed signal for opening or closing the switch unit 30 according to the voltage and current of the energy extraction unit 10. The present invention has a technical feature wherein a turn-on point of the open/closed signal comes at a time when the output end voltage of the energy extraction unit 10 is Vh, and a turn-off point comes at a time when the output end voltage of the energy extraction unit 10 is Vl. Accordingly, the present invention has a simple configuration, low manufacturing costs, has no energy loss due to the power conversion, and has no reduction in life due to charging and discharging of an energy storage device.


Patent
Seoul National University and Center For Integrated Smart Sensors Foundation | Date: 2014-10-21

The present invention relates to an energy supply circuit for instantly supplying power without a power converter and an electronic device which operates only when energy is supplied from an energy source using the same. An energy supply circuit without a power converter according to the present invention comprises: an energy extraction unit 10 for generating power from an energy source; and output unit 20 for supplying power to an external electronic circuit; a switch unit 30 interposed between the energy extraction unit and the output unit 20 to connect an output end of the energy extraction unit 10 to the output unit 20 when switched on; and a maximum power point tracking control unit 40 for generating an open/closed signal for opening or closing the switch unit 30 according to the voltage and current of the energy extraction unit 10. The present invention has a technical feature wherein a turn-on point of the open/closed signal comes at a time when the output end voltage of the energy extraction unit 10 is Vh, and a turn-off point comes at a time when the output end voltage of the energy extraction unit 10 is Vl. Accordingly, the present invention has a simple configuration, low manufacturing costs, has no energy loss due to the power conversion, and has no reduction in life due to charging and discharging of an energy storage device.


Grant
Agency: Cordis | Branch: H2020 | Program: IA | Phase: LCE-03-2015 | Award Amount: 25.07M | Year: 2016

DESTRESS is aimed at creating EGS (Enhanced geothermal systems) reservoirs with sufficient permeability, fracture orientation and spacing for economic use of underground heat. The concepts are based on experience in previous projects, on scientific progress and developments in other fields, mainly the oil & gas sector. Recently developed stimulation methods will be adapted to geothermal needs, applied to new geothermal sites and prepared for the market uptake. Understanding of risks in each area (whether technological, in business processes, for particular business cases, or otherwise), risk ownership, and possible risk mitigation will be the scope of specific work packages. The DESTRESS concept takes into account the common and specific issues of different sites, representative for large parts of Europe, and will provide a generally applicable workflow for productivity enhancement measures. The main focus will be on stimulation treatments with minimized environmental hazard (soft stimulation), to enhance the reservoir in several geological settings covering granites, sandstones, and other rock types. The business cases will be shown with cost and benefit estimations based on the proven changes of the system performance, and the environmental footprint of treatments and operation of the site will be controlled. In particular, the public debate related to fracking will be addressed by applying specific concepts for the mitigation of damaging seismic effects while constructing a productive reservoir and operating a long-term sustainable system. Industrial participation is particularly pronounced in DESTRESS, including large energy suppliers as well as SMEs in the process of developing their sites. The composition of the consortium involving major knowledge institutes as well as key industry will guarantee the increase in technology performance of EGS as well as an accelerated time to market.


Using their chip, the researchers also built a prototype of a complete navigation system for the visually impaired. About the size of a binoculars case and similarly worn around the neck, the system uses an experimental 3-D camera from Texas Instruments. The user carries a mechanical Braille interface developed at MIT's Computer Science and Artificial Intelligence Laboratory (CSAIL), which conveys information about the distance to the nearest obstacle in the direction the user is moving. The researchers reported the new chip and the prototype navigation system in a paper presented earlier this week at the International Solid-State Circuits Conference in San Francisco. "There was some prior work on this type of system, but the problem was that the systems were too bulky, because they require tons of different processing," says Dongsuk Jeon, a postdoc at MIT's Microsystems Research Laboratories (MTL) when the work was done who joined the faculty of Seoul National University in South Korea this year. "We wanted to miniaturize this system and realized that it is critical to make a very tiny chip that saves power but still provides enough computational power." Jeon is the first author on the new paper, and he's joined by Anantha Chandrakasan, the Vannevar Bush Professor of electrical engineering and computer science; Daniela Rus, the Andrew and Erna Viterbi professor of electrical engineering and computer science; Priyanka Raina, a graduate student in electrical engineering and computer science; Nathan Ickes, a former research scientist at MTL who's now at Apple Computer; and Hsueh-Cheng Wang, a postdoc at CSAIL when the work was done who will join the National Chiao Tung University in Taiwan as an assistant professor this month. In work sponsored by the Andrea Bocelli Foundation, which was founded by the blind singer Andrea Bocelli, Rus' group had developed an algorithm for converting 3-D camera data into useful navigation aids. The output of any 3-D camera can be converted into a 3-D representation called a "point cloud," which depicts the spatial locations of individual points on the surfaces of objects. The Rus group's algorithm clustered points together to identify flat surfaces in the scene, then measured the unobstructed walking distance in multiple directions. For the new paper, the researchers modified this algorithm, with power conservation in mind. The standard way to identify planes in point clouds, for instance, is to pick a point at random, then look at its immediate neighbors, and determine whether any of them lie in the same plane. If one of them does, the algorithm looks at its neighbors, determining whether any of them lie in the same plane, and so on, gradually expanding the surface. This is computationally efficient, but it requires frequent requests to a chip's main memory bank. Because the algorithm doesn't know in advance which direction it will move through the point cloud, it can't reliably preload the data it will need into its small working-memory bank. Fetching data from main memory, however, is the biggest energy drain in today's chips, so the MIT researchers modified the standard algorithm. Their algorithm always begins in the upper left-hand corner of the point cloud and scans along the top row, comparing each point only to the neighbor on its left. Then it starts at the leftmost point in the next row down, comparing each point only to the neighbor on its left and to the one directly above it, and repeats this process until it has examined all the points. This enables the chip to load as many rows as will fit into its working memory, without having to go back to main memory. This and similar tricks drastically reduced the chip's power consumption. But the data-processing chip isn't the component of the navigation system that consumes the most energy; the 3-D camera is. So the chip also includes a circuit that quickly and coarsely compares each new frame of data captured by the camera with the one that immediately preceded it. If little changes over successive frames, that's a good indication that the user is still; the chip sends a signal to the camera, which can lower its frame rate, saving power. Although the prototype navigation system is less obtrusive than its predecessors, it should be possible to miniaturize it even further. Currently, one of its biggest components is a heat dissipation device atop a second chip that converts the camera's output into a point cloud. Adding the conversion algorithm to the data-processing chip should have a negligible effect on its power consumption but would significantly reduce the size of the system's electronics. Explore further: Picture-perfect: Quick, efficient chip cleans up common flaws in amateur photographs


Research and Markets has announced the addition of the "Stretchable Electronics 2017-2027" report to their offering. This report provides you with everything that you need to know about stretchable electronics. It provides the most comprehensive and insightful view of this diverse emerging industry, assessing more than 32 product areas, analysing more than 16 different stretchable materials/components, covering the progress of more than 87 companies and 25 research institutes including first-hand primary research on 59 companies, and giving ten-year market forecasts segmented by more than 7 application and 15 material/component areas. This report develops a critical technology assessment for a vast array of emerging stretchable electronic materials and components. These include stretch sensors, stretchable ink-, yarn-, or wire-based interconnects, stretchable transparent conductive films, stretchable PCBs, haptics and actuators, transistors and logic, energy harvesters, batteries, supercapacitors, encapsulates, substrates, and so on. Our forecasts are segmented by 15 different stretchable component types. This report also provides a detailed view of end use markets including healthcare & medical, automotive, consumer, sports & fitness, industrial, and so on. The ten-year forecasts are segmented by 7 key markets and at least 7 product types such as robotics, apparel textiles, non-apparel textiles, skin patches, and so on. 4. STRETCHABLE CONDUCTIVE INKS 5. IN-MOLD CONDUCTIVE INKS 6. STRETCHABLE AND IN-MOLD TRANSPARENT CONDUCTIVE FILM 7. SUBSTRATES FOR STRETCHABLE ELECTRONICS 8. STRETCHABLE SENSORS 9. THERMOFORMED POLYMERIC ACTUATOR 10. ENERGY STORAGE: STRETCHABLE BATTERIES AND SUPERCAPACITORS 11. STRETCHABLE OR EXTREMELY FLEXIBLE CIRCUITS BOARDS 12. STRETCHABLE DISPLAYS 13. STRETCHABLE TRANSISTORS 14. MARKETS 15. FORECASTS 16. COMPANY PROFILES AND INTERVIEWS 17. APPENDIX 18. COMPANY INTELLIGENCE BASED ON PRIMARY FIRST-HAND INTERVIEWS - Adidas - Agfa - Ash Chemical - Bainisha - Clothing+ - Directa Plus - DuPont - Dupont Advanced Materials - EMS - EnFlux - Eurecat - Cetemmsa - FEET ME - Flexeed - Footfalls And Heartbeats - Forster Rohner Ag - Forster Rohner Textile Innovations - Hexoskin - Hitachi Chemical - Holst Centre - Imperial College London - Kureha - MC10 - Mektec - Molex - NC State University - Polymatech America Co., Ltd. - Sabic - Satosen - Sensing Tex - Seoul National University - Showa Denko - Soongsil University - Wearable Life Sciences - Xerox Research Centre Of Canada (Xrcc) - Yamaha For more information about this report visit http://www.researchandmarkets.com/research/2rplhf/stretchable


News Article | October 29, 2016
Site: www.prweb.com

It’s the story you love to hear in the antiques world. Rare maps found in garage sell for $24,000. Two dark, ripped images in poor condition in the Kaminski Auctions October 1st auction turned out to be just that. Several astute collectors on the phones and Internet recognized the pair of panels for what they really were, two panels of a map produced for the Korean market of Matteo Ricci's derivative map. Through a series of unlikely events the pair have found a temporary home with Barry Lawrence Ruderman Antique Maps at RareMaps.com in La Jolla, California. The two panels were first described as “two 19th century hand colored prints of the world" on closer inspection an astute cataloger recognized they were in fact maps and changed the description on all of the Internet bidding platforms. The maps were purchased twenty years ago at the Brimfield Antiques Show and were found in the garage of a Palm Desert home. “We only spotted the map about 24 hours before the sale doing a routine search for maps in upcoming auctions. My gallery manager, Alex Clausen, brought it to my attention, and the two of us quickly worked out that it was a 'Matteo Ricci derivative map.' We researched the map for about an hour, before concluding it was the 1708 'Korean edition' of Ricci. Twenty five hand painted copies were reported to have been done between 1605 and 1608, one of which survives in the Nanjing Museum " stated Barry Ruderman. Matteo Ricci was an Italian Jesuit missionary and one of the founding figures of the Jesuit Missions in China. Arriving in Macau in 1582 he began his missionary work. He was the first European to enter the Forbidden City of Beijing in 1601. His skills in astronomy and calendrical science caught the attention of the Wanli Emperor who granted Ricci a stipend in 1601, which allowed him to begin creating maps for the Emperor. In 1602 Matteo Ricci's published a World Map (Kunyu wanguo quantu), or Map of the Ten Thousand Countries of the Earth. It is the oldest surviving map in Chinese to show the Americas. The last example of the Ricci map to come to market was sold by Bernard Shapero Rare Books to the James Ford Bell Library for $1,000,000 around 2008. There are approximately six known complete examples of the Ricci World Map. In 1708 the Ricci map was copied for the Korean market. The Gonyeomangukjeondo is a Korean hand-copied reproduction by painter Kim Jin-yeo. This map represents the world in an ellipse. A copy of the 1708 Korean Ricci map is owned and displayed at the Seoul National University Museum and was designated National Treasure No.849 on August 9, 1985. There are only a few known surviving examples of the Korean copies and it appears they are more rare than the 1602 Ricci. Two are located in Korea and one in Edinburgh, Scotland. “The map sheets we purchased at Kaminski are Sections 1 (far left side) and 6 (far right side) of a 6 sheet World Map. The 1708 Korean Ricci map is noteworthy for its addition of sea monsters, sailing ships and other decorative embellishments, which is how we were able to identify what we were looking at from the images provided on line by Kaminski. “Our intention is to restore the map clean, stabilize, de-acidify, etc. and offer it for sale by December 2016. We suspect there should be considerable institutional and private interest, given the rarity and importance of the Ricci map ” said Ruderman. The maps were shipped to the consignor immediately after the auction and in a subsequent phone call Mr. Ruderman stated that, “Now, on closer inspection, we are leaning toward original Ming Dynasty hand painted copies. If these do prove to be originals from 1605-1608, it would be an even more exciting find. We are not aware of any of these maps appearing at auction or otherwise. A printed Ricci is obviously an exciting thing, but one of the hand painted Ming Dynasty era copies, extra illustrated with sea monsters and sailing ships, would be an even more extraordinary find." After a call alerting the Boston Symphony Orchestra press office that a large collection of drawings and paintings with assorted correspondence, all relating to the BSO by the artist Donald Carlisle Greason were coming up for auction, the collection sold for $7,200 and found a permanent home in the BSO archives. A 19th century Italian classical marble sculpture marble unsigned of a male torso from a Rome estate was hotly contested on the phones and Internet and was finally hammered down at $14,400. A circa 1920 Art Deco ladies diamond, emerald and platinum Jabo pin, from a New York collection, sold for $10,200. Jewelry as a category did well in the sale with a ten carat ladies platinum and diamond bracelet selling for $5,700, and a fourteen carat yellow gold, diamond and ruby necklace, with forty-nine natural step cut oval and pavilion rubies selling for $4,800. Signed mid century modern furniture continues to bring in the buyer’s. A Frank Gehry for Knoll bentwood table with four chairs stamped 06/19/93/, had numerous Internet bids and was finally hammered down at $4,800. All prices include twenty per cent buyer’s premium. For more information and to view our upcoming schedule go to http://www.kaminskiauctions.com and sign up to bid with KaminskiLIVE.


« Suez and Total partner to recycle cooking oil into renewable diesel blendstock; 10-year agreement | Main | First UPS US delivery eBike debuts in Portland, Oregon » Researchers from Augmented Optics Ltd. and the University of Surrey, in collaboration with the University of Bristol, have developed new, crosslinked gel-matrix polymer electrolytes exhibiting measured capacitance values more than 100 times those of conventional electrolytes. The new gel electrolytes are compatible with all normal production electrodes. Augmented Optics, which has formed a subsidiary, SuperCapacitor Materials, to commercialize the materials, believes that the combination of existing electrodes and the new electrolytes have the potential to create supercapacitors that have energy storage capacities which can approach or exceed existing battery systems. Supercapacitors feature long cycle life and high power density; they can perform thousands of high power charge/discharge cycles without loosing energy storage capacity. However, compared to batteries, they are hampered by low energy density, limiting the amount they can store. In a paper earlier this year published in the RSC Journal of Materials Chemistry A, researchers at Seoul National University in Korea who are developing their own higher-performance cross-linked polymer-ionic liquid electrolyte succinctly explained: These methods work because the energy density is proportional to the capacitance and operating voltages.… The active electrode material plays an important role in increasing energy densities. For instance, carbonaceous materials like graphene and CNT, pseudo capacitance materials including metal oxides/hydroxides, and conductive polymers have been reported as high capacitance materials. However, those materials struggle with about process abilities, limiting of electrolyte adoption, charging/discharging properties, minimizing high cost and checking suitability for commercial production lines. Such boundaries with electrode materials motivate the development of electrolyte with high operating voltages for high energy densities. Because the operating voltages for SCs depends on the electrochemical stability window of the electrolyte. The Augmented Optics technology was adapted from the principles used to make soft contact lenses, which Dr. Donald Highgate (of Augmented Optics, and an alumnus of the University of Surrey) developed following his postgraduate studies at Surrey 40 years ago. The work was conducted by researchers at the University of Surrey’s Department of Chemistry where the project was initiated by Dr. Highgate. The research team was co-led by the Principal Investigators Dr. Ian Hamerton and Dr. Brendan Howlin. Dr. Hamerton continues to collaborate on the project in his new post at the University of Bristol, where the electrochemical testing to trial the research findings was carried out by fellow University of Bristol academic David Fermin, Professor of Electrochemistry in the School of Chemistry. The test results from the new polymers suggest that extremely high energy density supercapacitors could be constructed in the very new future. We are now actively seeking commercial partners in order to supply our polymers and offer assistance to build these ultra high energy density storage devices. —Jim Heathcote, Chief Executive of both Augmented Optics Ltd. and Supercapacitor Materials Ltd.


News Article | November 30, 2016
Site: www.newsmaker.com.au

Daejeon, KOREA - Exobrain, a language intelligence software for communicating between human and machine developed by the Electronics and Telecommunications Research Institute (ETRI), defeated four human champions in a quiz show on EBS Korea. South Korea's Educational Broadcasting System is a children's educational television and radio network. On November 18 Exobrain went "head-to-head" with human competitors on the television quiz show, "Janghak Quiz", which was recorded at the ETRI auditorium. Exobrain outpaced all competitors by scoring 510 out of 600 points, providing correct answers for 25 questions out of 30 (10 multiple-choice and 20 short-answer questions). The Exobrain defeated four human quiz prodigies: Mr. Yun Ju-il (finishing in 2nd place), a freshman of Seoul National University who attained a perfect score in last year's national college entrance exam; Mr. Kim Hyeon-ho and Miss Lee Jeong-min, the champions of the "Janghak Quiz" in the first and second half of 2016, respectively; and Mr. Oh Hyeon-min, who is studying mathematical sciences at KAIST and demonstrated his outstanding intelligence in a televised brain game.  Here's how Exobrain works: once a question is given, the system first derives keywords. For instance, in response to the question: "What is the stone tablet found in Egypt and described in Empire of the Ants, a novel written by Bernard Werber, which enabled communication between humans and ants?", the AI system searches such keywords as Werber, ants, communication, stone tablet and Egypt from its database before filtering tens to hundreds of possible answers. Next, it measures each potential answer against the question, assessing the reliability of each answer and finally submitting the most reliable answer. It only takes six to seven seconds to work out an answer.  In the quiz contest, Exobrain dominated the human competitors, but the system did not get all the answers right. The research team explained that Exobrain made a few wrong answers because some questions were related to fields the system had not learned about yet and the system did not have sufficient data to infer correct answers. The team added that further research and development would be required to conduct a semantic analysis of languages. According to ETRI, the core artificial intelligence (AI) technologies of Exobrain are: Korean language analysis technology, to analyze the grammar rules applied to sentences as its human counterparts can do; knowledge acquisition and exploration technology, to learn and store linguistic knowledge and unit of knowledge (a subject-predicate-object structure) from vast amount of books, documents, Wikipedia articles, dictionaries, and so on; and natural language QA technology, to understand questions comprising multiple sentences and infer answers. The quiz contest was intended to verify the level of first-stage technology developed over the first four years of the 10-year research period. The second and third stages of research are scheduled to be completed by 2022. For phase two, ETRI plans to focus on developing applied technologies and achieving globally competitive performance of QA solutions for expert knowledge including counseling, legal and patent areas. The last phase of the project will focus on developing QA solutions for expert knowledge in both Korean and English so that the AI system can engage in QA activities regarding expert knowledge described in English. In addition, ETRI researchers are committed to developing QA solutions for AI robots and wearable devices that can be utilized with a range of smart devices. Currently, Exobrain shows a level of performance similar to that of Watson, the AI system developed by IBM. In 2011, Watson appeared on the CBS quiz show "Jeopardy!" and defeated human quiz champions. Through further development, this AI system is now supporting the decision-making processes of medical, financial, and legal professionals.  ETRI aims to commercialize Exobrain within the next three years. Exobrain will be used to conduct prior analysis of areas requiring revision of law in partnership with the National Assembly Library, and the AI system is also expected to be used for filtering overlapping technologies in the process of screening patent applications.  "The correct answer rate of Exobrain is 83% on average, which is higher than Watson's performance (70%) in 2011," says Dr. Dong Won Han, Vice President of ETRI, SW and Contents Research Laboratory. "Considering that Exobrain was originally developed for the Korean language, it will have further potential uses when it is upgraded."  About ETRI Established in 1976, ETRI is a non-profit Korean government-funded research organization that has been at the forefront of technological excellence for about 40 years. In the 1980s, ETRI developed TDX (Time Division Exchange) and 4M DRAM. In the 1990s, ETRI commercialized CDMA (Code Division Multiple Access) for the first time in the world. In the 2000s, ETRI developed Terrestrial DMB, WiBro, and 4G LTE Advanced, which became the foundation of mobile communications. Recently, as a global ICT leader, ETRI has been advancing communication and convergence by developing SAN (Ship Area Network) technology, Genie Talk (world class portable automatic interpretation; Korean-English/Japanese/Chinese), and automated valet parking technology. As of 2016, ETRI has about 2,000 employees where about 1,800 of them are researchers. For more informatoin, please visit https://www.etri.re.kr/eng/main/main.etri For more information, please contact Dr. Hyun-ki Kim Director, Knowledge Mining Research Section, ETRI e-mail: [email protected] phone: +82 42 860 5965 Press release distributed by ResearchSEA on behalf of ETRI.


News Article | February 4, 2016
Site: www.scientificcomputing.com

MIT researchers have developed a low-power chip for processing 3-D camera data that could help visually impaired people navigate their environments. The chip consumes only one-thousandth as much power as a conventional computer processor executing the same algorithms. Using their chip, the researchers also built a prototype of a complete navigation system for the visually impaired. About the size of a binoculars case and similarly worn around the neck, the system uses an experimental 3-D camera from Texas Instruments. The user carries a mechanical Braille interface developed at MIT’s Computer Science and Artificial Intelligence Laboratory (CSAIL), which conveys information about the distance to the nearest obstacle in the direction the user is moving. The researchers reported the new chip and the prototype navigation system in a paper presented at the International Solid-State Circuits Conference in San Francisco. “There was some prior work on this type of system, but the problem was that the systems were too bulky, because they require tons of different processing,” says Dongsuk Jeon, a postdoc at MIT’s Microsystems Research Laboratories (MTL) at the time the work was done and who joined the faculty of Seoul National University in South Korea this year. “We wanted to miniaturize this system and realized that it is critical to make a very tiny chip that saves power but still provides enough computational power.” Jeon is the first author on the new paper, and he’s joined by Anantha Chandrakasan, the Vannevar Bush Professor of electrical engineering and computer science; Daniela Rus, the Andrew and Erna Viterbi professor of electrical engineering and computer science; Priyanka Raina, a graduate student in electrical engineering and computer science; Nathan Ickes, a former research scientist at MTL who’s now at Apple Computer; and Hsueh-Cheng Wang, a postdoc at CSAIL when the work was done who will join the National Chiao Tung University in Taiwan as an assistant professor this month. In work sponsored by the Andrea Bocelli Foundation, which was founded by the blind singer Andrea Bocelli, Rus’ group had developed an algorithm for converting 3-D camera data into useful navigation aids. The output of any 3-D camera can be converted into a 3-D representation called a “point cloud,” which depicts the spatial locations of individual points on the surfaces of objects. The Rus group’s algorithm clustered points together to identify flat surfaces in the scene, then measured the unobstructed walking distance in multiple directions. For the new paper, the researchers modified this algorithm with power conservation in mind. The standard way to identify planes in point clouds, for instance, is to pick a point at random, then look at its immediate neighbors, and determine whether any of them lie in the same plane. If one of them does, the algorithm looks at its neighbors, determining whether any of them lie in the same plane, and so on, gradually expanding the surface. This is computationally efficient, but it requires frequent requests to a chip’s main memory bank. Because the algorithm doesn’t know in advance which direction it will move through the point cloud, it can’t reliably preload the data it will need into its small working-memory bank. Fetching data from main memory, however, is the biggest energy drain in today’s chips, so the MIT researchers modified the standard algorithm. Their algorithm always begins in the upper left-hand corner of the point cloud and scans along the top row, comparing each point only to the neighbor on its left. Then it starts at the leftmost point in the next row down, comparing each point only to the neighbor on its left and to the one directly above it, and repeats this process until it has examined all the points. This enables the chip to load as many rows as will fit into its working memory, without having to go back to main memory. This and similar tricks drastically reduced the chip’s power consumption. But the data-processing chip isn’t the component of the navigation system that consumes the most energy; the 3-D camera is. So, the chip also includes a circuit that quickly and coarsely compares each new frame of data captured by the camera with the one that immediately preceded it. If little changes over successive frames, that’s a good indication that the user is still; the chip sends a signal to the camera, which can lower its frame rate, saving power. Although the prototype navigation system is less obtrusive than its predecessors, it should be possible to miniaturize it even further. Currently, one of its biggest components is a heat dissipation device atop a second chip that converts the camera’s output into a point cloud. Adding the conversion algorithm to the data-processing chip should have a negligible effect on its power consumption but would significantly reduce the size of the system’s electronics. In addition to the Andrea Bocelli Foundation, the work was cosponsored by Texas Instruments, and the prototype chips were manufactured through the Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Company’s University Shuttle Program.


News Article | November 30, 2016
Site: www.acnnewswire.com

- Scholarship quiz show, called "Janghak Quiz", on the major educational television network in Korea - AI solutions to be developed for legal, patent and counseling areas Exobrain, a language intelligence software for communicating between human and machine developed by the Electronics and Telecommunications Research Institute (ETRI), defeated four human champions in a quiz show on EBS Korea. South Korea's Educational Broadcasting System is a children's educational television and radio network. On November 18 Exobrain went "head-to-head" with human competitors on the television quiz show, "Janghak Quiz", which was recorded at the ETRI auditorium. Exobrain outpaced all competitors by scoring 510 out of 600 points, providing correct answers for 25 questions out of 30 (10 multiple-choice and 20 short-answer questions). The Exobrain defeated four human quiz prodigies: Mr. Yun Ju-il (finishing in 2nd place), a freshman of Seoul National University who attained a perfect score in last year's national college entrance exam; Mr. Kim Hyeon-ho and Miss Lee Jeong-min, the champions of the "Janghak Quiz" in the first and second half of 2016, respectively; and Mr. Oh Hyeon-min, who is studying mathematical sciences at KAIST and demonstrated his outstanding intelligence in a televised brain game. Here's how Exobrain works: once a question is given, the system first derives keywords. For instance, in response to the question: "What is the stone tablet found in Egypt and described in Empire of the Ants, a novel written by Bernard Werber, which enabled communication between humans and ants?", the AI system searches such keywords as Werber, ants, communication, stone tablet and Egypt from its database before filtering tens to hundreds of possible answers. Next, it measures each potential answer against the question, assessing the reliability of each answer and finally submitting the most reliable answer. It only takes six to seven seconds to work out an answer. In the quiz contest, Exobrain dominated the human competitors, but the system did not get all the answers right. The research team explained that Exobrain made a few wrong answers because some questions were related to fields the system had not learned about yet and the system did not have sufficient data to infer correct answers. The team added that further research and development would be required to conduct a semantic analysis of languages. According to ETRI, the core artificial intelligence (AI) technologies of Exobrain are: Korean language analysis technology, to analyze the grammar rules applied to sentences as its human counterparts can do; knowledge acquisition and exploration technology, to learn and store linguistic knowledge and unit of knowledge (a subject-predicate-object structure) from vast amount of books, documents, Wikipedia articles, dictionaries, and so on; and natural language QA technology, to understand questions comprising multiple sentences and infer answers. The quiz contest was intended to verify the level of first-stage technology developed over the first four years of the 10-year research period. The second and third stages of research are scheduled to be completed by 2022. For phase two, ETRI plans to focus on developing applied technologies and achieving globally competitive performance of QA solutions for expert knowledge including counseling, legal and patent areas. The last phase of the project will focus on developing QA solutions for expert knowledge in both Korean and English so that the AI system can engage in QA activities regarding expert knowledge described in English. In addition, ETRI researchers are committed to developing QA solutions for AI robots and wearable devices that can be utilized with a range of smart devices. Currently, Exobrain shows a level of performance similar to that of Watson, the AI system developed by IBM. In 2011, Watson appeared on the CBS quiz show "Jeopardy!" and defeated human quiz champions. Through further development, this AI system is now supporting the decision-making processes of medical, financial, and legal professionals. ETRI aims to commercialize Exobrain within the next three years. Exobrain will be used to conduct prior analysis of areas requiring revision of law in partnership with the National Assembly Library, and the AI system is also expected to be used for filtering overlapping technologies in the process of screening patent applications. "The correct answer rate of Exobrain is 83% on average, which is higher than Watson's performance (70%) in 2011," says Dr. Dong Won Han, Vice President of ETRI, SW and Contents Research Laboratory. "Considering that Exobrain was originally developed for the Korean language, it will have further potential uses when it is upgraded." About ETRI Established in 1976, ETRI is a non-profit Korean government-funded research organization that has been at the forefront of technological excellence for about 40 years. In the 1980s, ETRI developed TDX (Time Division Exchange) and 4M DRAM. In the 1990s, ETRI commercialized CDMA (Code Division Multiple Access) for the first time in the world. In the 2000s, ETRI developed Terrestrial DMB, WiBro, and 4G LTE Advanced, which became the foundation of mobile communications. Recently, as a global ICT leader, ETRI has been advancing communication and convergence by developing SAN (Ship Area Network) technology, Genie Talk (world class portable automatic interpretation; Korean-English/Japanese/Chinese), and automated valet parking technology. As of 2016, ETRI has about 2,000 employees where about 1,800 of them are researchers. For more informatoin, please visit https://www.etri.re.kr/eng/main/main.etri For more information, please contact Dr. Hyun-ki Kim Director, Knowledge Mining Research Section, ETRI e-mail: phone: +82 42 860 5965 Press release distributed by ResearchSEA on behalf of ETRI. Topic: Research and development Sectors: Electronics, IT Individual, Science & Research http://www.acnnewswire.com From the Asia Corporate News Network


News Article | November 3, 2016
Site: www.24-7pressrelease.com

FAIRPORT, NY, November 03, 2016-- William Y. Chey, MD, DSc, has been included in Marquis Who's Who. As in all Marquis Who's Who biographical volumes, individuals profiled are selected on the basis of current reference value. Factors such as position, noteworthy accomplishments, visibility, and prominence in a field are all taken into account during the selection process.With more than 50 years of experience as a physician, educator and research scientist in gastrointestinal medicine, Dr. Chey is widely recognized for his expertise in the field of gastroenterology and hepatology. Prior to his retirement in 2000, he served as a professor of medicine and director of the Division of Gastroenterology and Hepatology at the University of Rochester Medical Center, and as a consultant gastroenterologist at Canandaigua VA Medical Center. He is a fellow of the American College of Gastroenterology and the American Gastroenterological Association, a member of the AGA Legacy Society, and was a member of the American Association for the Advancement of Science and American Physiological Society, among other medical organizations. In addition, he is the former president of the American Pancreatic Association and the American Society of Acupuncture. He was invited nationally and internationally as a visiting professor by numerous prestigious institutions in the United States, Europe, Asia and Mid-Eastern countries. In particular, he holds the titles of Honorary Professor at the Catholic University College of Medicine, Seoul, Korea and Visiting Professor at Peking Union Medical College, Chinese Academy of Medical Sciences, Beijing, China and Korea University College of Medicine, Seoul, Korea.After completing his medical education in 1953 through the two top medical schools in Seoul, Korea, Seoul National University and Yonsei University in Seoul, Korea, and serving as a medical officer of the Republic of Korea in the Korean War, Dr. Chey emigrated to the United States in 1954 and had his post-graduate training including internship and residency in internal medicine at City Hospital of New York, fellowship in pathology at Mount Sinai Hospital, New York, and fellowship in hepatology at Jersey City Medical Center, Seton Hall University School of Medicine and Dentistry, Jersey City, NJ. Then he received advanced degrees of Master of Science in Gastroenterology in 1962 and Doctor of Science in Medicine in 1966 from the University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine. At Temple University Medical Center and the Samuel S. Fel's Research Institute, Temple University School of Medicine, Philadelphia, PA, he finished a fellowship in gastroenterology and became a faculty member in 1963. He was an Associate Professor of Medicine and Head of Gastrointestinal Research in 1971 when he was recruited by the University of Rochester School of Medicine and Dentistry, Rochester, NY. He was the Founding Director of the Isaac Gordon Center for Digestive Diseases and Nutrition at the Genesee Hospital and Attending Physician at Strong Memorial Hospital, Rochester, NY. In 1992, he became Director of the Division of Gastroenterology and Hepatology at the University of Rochester Medical Center. He was also the Founding Director of the William and Sheila Konar Center for Digestive and Liver Diseases at Strong Memorial Hospital until his retirement in 2000. During his tenure, he trained numerous clinical and research fellows from the United States and abroad, including Asia, Europe, South America, Mid-East and Africa. The majority of them returned to their native countries and are active in their leadership positions. During the following ten years, he enjoyed practicing gastrointestinal medicine at the Rochester Institute for Digestive Diseases and Sciences and was also actively involved in the American Gastroenterological Association and the American Pancreatic Association. He has been married to Fan K. Tang since 1959. They have 4 children; William D. married to Janine Zwiren, Donna married to Dale Hoellrich, Richard married to Maura Bauman, and Laura married to Richard Warren, and 9 grandchildren; Cameron, Brandon (deceased), Samuel, Megen, Russell, Paris, Wyatt, Josephine and LiLi.He contributed numerous articles to competitive scientific journals, and published many chapters in text-books and two books of his specialty and research. He was a member of the editorial board of the Pancreas and American Journal of Physiology, and has been the Editor-In-Chief of Clinical Endoscopy since 2011. He served as an active member of the National Institute of Health, Surgery and Bioengineering Study Section and a consultant to the Gastrointestinal Drug Advisory Committee, Food and Drug Administration, Department of Health and Human Services.In recognition of his contributions to medicine, Dr. Chey received a wide variety of honors and awards. He was the recipient of the V.L. William and Frisca Go Award for Life Time Achievement from the American Pancreatic Association, the Governor's Award for Excellence in Clinical Research from the American College of Gastroenterology, Distinguished Clinician Award and Mentor's Research Scholar Award from the American Gastroenterological Association, Distinguished Service Award from the Rochester Academy of Medicine and American Top Physicians Award in 2008 from the Consumers' Research Council of America. He has been cited in Marquis Who's Who in America, in Medicine and Health Care, in Science and Engineering, and in the World.About Marquis Who's Who :Since 1899, when A. N. Marquis printed the First Edition of Who's Who in America , Marquis Who's Who has chronicled the lives of the most accomplished individuals and innovators from every significant field of endeavor, including politics, business, medicine, law, education, art, religion and entertainment. Today, Who's Who in America remains an essential biographical source for thousands of researchers, journalists, librarians and executive search firms around the world. Marquis now publishes many Who's Who titles, including Who's Who in America , Who's Who in the World , Who's Who in American Law , Who's Who in Medicine and Healthcare , Who's Who in Science and Engineering , and Who's Who in Asia . Marquis publications may be visited at the official Marquis Who's Who website at www.marquiswhoswho.com


News Article | October 12, 2016
Site: www.nature.com

No statistical methods were used to predetermine sample size. The experiments were not randomized, and investigators were not blinded to allocation during experiments and outcome assessment. An immortalized lymphoblastoid cell line was established from the AK1 individual through Epstein–Barr virus transformation of mononuclear cells (Seoul Clinical Laboratories Inc.). Full pathogen testing was performed and maintained in a mycoplasma-free facility. AK1 lymphoblastoid cell line was cultured in RPMI 1640 media containing 15% FBS at 37 °C in a humidified 5% CO environment. The approval number C-0806-023-246 for the AK1 individual was assigned based on the guidelines from the Institutional Review Board of Seoul National University. Genomic DNA was extracted from AK1 cells using the Gentra Puregene Cell Kit (Qiagen). Large-insert PacBio library preparation was conducted following the Pacific Biosciences recommended protocols. In brief, a total of 60 μg AK1 genomic DNA was sheared to ~20 kb targeted size by using Covaris g-TUBEs (Covaris). Each shearing processed 10 μg input DNA and a total of 6 shearings were performed. The sheared genomic DNA was examined by Agilent 2100 Bioanalyzer DNA12000 Chip (Agilent Technologies Inc.) for size distribution and underwent DNA damage repair/end repair, blunt-end adaptor ligation followed by exonuclease digestion. The purified digestion products were loaded onto pre-cast 0.6% agarose for 7–50 kb size selection using the BluePippin Size Selection System (Sage Science), and the recovered size-selected library products were purified using 0.5× pre-washed Agencourt AMPure XP beads (Beckman Coulter). The final libraries were examined by Agilent 2100 Bioanalyzer DNA12000 Chip for size distribution and the library concentration was determined with Qubit 2.0 Fluorometer (Life Technologies). We sequenced with the PacBio RSII instrument with P6 polymerase binding and C4 chemistry kits (P6C4). A total of 380 SMRT Cells were used to yield 101-fold whole-genome sequence data. AK1 cells were pelleted and washed with PBS; the final cell pellet was re-suspended in cell-suspension buffer using the CHEF Mammalian Genomic DNA Plug Kit (Bio-Rad). Cells were then embedded in CleanCut low-melt Agarose (Bio-Rad) and spread into a thin layer on a custom support (in development at BioNano Genomics). Cells were lysed using IrysPrep Lysis Buffer (BioNano Genomics), protease-treated with Puregene Proteinase K (Qiagen), followed by brief washing in Tris with 50mM EDTA and then washing in Tris with 1 mM EDTA before RNase treatment with Puregene RNase (Qiagen). DNA was then equilibrated in Tris with 50 mM EDTA and incubated overnight at 4 °C before extensive washing in Tris with 0.1 mM EDTA followed by equilibration in NEBuffer 3 (New England BioLabs) at 1× concentration. Purified DNA in the thin layer agarose was labelled following the IrysPrep Reagent Kit protocol with adaptations for labelling in agarose. In brief, 1.25 μg of DNA was digested with 0.7 U Nt.BspQI nicking endonuclease per microlitre of reaction volume in NEBuffer 3 (New England BioLabs) for 130 min at 37 °C, then washed with TE Low EDTA Buffer (Affymetrix), pH 8.0, followed by equilibration with 1× ThermoPol Reaction Buffer (New England BioLabs). Nick-digested DNA was then incubated for 70 min at 50 °C using the IrysPrep Labelling mix (BioNano Genomics) and Taq DNA Polymerase (New England BioLabs) at a final concentration of 0.4 U μl−1. Nick-labelled DNA was incubated for 40 min at 37 °C using the IrysPrep Repair mix (BioNano Genomics) and Taq DNA Ligase (New England BioLabs) at a final concentration of 1 U μl−1. Labelled-repaired DNA was then recovered from the thin layer agarose by digesting with GELase and counterstained with IrysPrep DNA Stain (BioNano Genomics) before data collection on the Irys System. The fragile site rescue process protects fragile sites by reducing the temperature of the labelling reaction and minimizes shear forces by restraining DNA in agarose until nicks are repaired. In this case, only the closest opposite-strand nick-pairs break. Sample indexing and partition barcoded libraries were prepared using GemCode Gel Bead and Library Kit (10× Genomics)4. Sequencing was conducted with Illumina Hiseq2500 to generate linked reads. Libraries were generated with PCR-free protocols. gDNA was sheared twice using Covaris S2 with cycling conditions of 10% duty cycle, Cycles/Burst 200, and Time 100 s. The sheared DNA was processed using the Illumina TruSeq DNA PCR-Free LT Library Kit protocol to generate 550 bp inserts, which includes end repair, SPRI bead size selection, A-tailing, and Y-adaptor ligation. Library concentration was measured by qPCR and loaded on HiSeq X Ten instruments (PE-150) to generate 72-fold sequence coverage. A total of 32,026 BAC clones were selected from the 252 384-well plates and re-plated into 96-well plates. Clones were grown overnight, and the cultures were used to prepare two additional replicates for the two 384-well plates that were stored at −80 °C in LB medium containing 20% glycerol. A total of 32,026 clone cultures with growth at ODs ranging from 0.6 to 1.0 were pooled, pelleted and the DNA was extracted using the standard alkaline lysis method. In this procedure, a cell pellet was resuspended in 150 μl of Qiagen buffer P1 with RNase and lysed with 150 μl of 0.2 M NaOH, 1% SDS solution for 5 min. Lysis was neutralized with the addition of 150 μl of 3 M sodium acetate, pH 4.8. Neutralized lysate was incubated on ice for 30 min, and DNA was collected by centrifugation for 15 min at 15.7g at 4 °C, concentrated by standard ethanol precipitation and resuspended in 25 μl of 10 mM Tris-HCl, pH 8.5. DNA from approximately 150 BAC clones with roughly equimolar concentration was combined into a single pool. A total of 10 μg from each pool DNA was sheared and fragments of insert size ranging from 10 to 15 kb were selected. Two libraries were prepared from the pooled DNA using a PacBio SMRTbell library preparation kit v1.0. The libraries were quantified using a Qubit 2.0 fluorometer and each library was sequenced using two SMRT cells with P6C4 chemistry. DNA from approximately 290 BAC clones with roughly equimolar concentration was combined into a single BAC pool. One nanogram of DNA from each pool was digested and fragments of insert size ranging from 500 to 550 bp were selected. In total, 109 libraries were prepared from the pooled DNA using Illumina-compatible Nextera XT DNA sample prep kit and sequenced with HiSeq2500. We extracted RNA from tissue using RNAiso Plus (Takara Bio), followed by purification using RNeasy MinElute (Qiagen). RNA was assessed for quality and was quantified using RNA 6000 Nano LabChip on a 2100 Bioanalyzer (Agilent). The RNA sequencing (RNA-seq) libraries were prepared as previously described20. RNA library was sequenced with Illumina TruSeq SBS Kit v3 on a HiSeq 2000 sequencer (Illumina) to obtain 100 bp paired-end reads. The image analysis and base calling were performed using the Illumina pipeline with default settings. Total RNA extracted from AK1 cells with RNA integrity number (RIN) > 8.0 was used for library preparation. The library was constructed following the Clontech SMARTer-PCR cDNA Synthesis Sample Preparation Guide. 1–2 kb, 2–3 kb, 3–6 kb and >5 kb libraries were selected by Sage, ELF purified, end-repaired and blunt-end SMRTbell adapters were ligated. The fragment size distribution was confirmed on a Bioanalyzer HS chip (Agilent) and quantified on a Qubit fluorometer (Life Technologies). The fragment size distribution was validated on a Bioanalyzer HS chip (Agilent) and quantified on a Qubit fluorometer (Life Technologies). The sequencing was carried out on the PacBio RSII instrument using P6C4. Around 31 million subreads were used for assembly with FALCON v0.3.0 (ref. 21) given length_cutoff parameter of 10 kb for initial mapping to build pre-assembled reads (preads), and preads over 15 kb were used (length_cutoff_pr) to maximize the assembled contig N50 (Extended Data Fig. 2). Primary and associated contigs were polished using Quiver5. Optical maps were de novo assembled into genome maps using BioNano assembler software (Irys System, BioNano Genomics). Single molecules longer than 150 kb with at least 8 fluorescent labels were used to find possible overlaps (P < 1 × 10−10). Next, these maps were constructed to consensus maps by recursively refining and extending them by mapping single molecules (P < 1 × 10−5). The consensus maps were compared and merged into genome maps when patterns matched (P < 1 × 10−10). A second set of optical maps was obtained thereafter, and generated into genome maps with the same criteria. Primary contigs were in silico digested into cmaps and were compared with genome maps for scaffolding. The scaffolding was visualized and performed with the Irys Viewer. When conflict occurred, the contigs were edited with the guidance of genome map. Paired-end reads from Illumina platform were aligned to the assembly using bwa22 mem, followed with duplication removal using Picard tools23. Base-pair correction of the assembly was performed using Pilon24. Pilon mostly corrected single insertions and deletions in regions enriched with homopolymer. Contigs or scaffolds shorter than 10 kb were excluded from the overall analysis to avoid results from spurious misassembly. Scaffolding accuracy of the AK1 assembly was assessed using the AK1 BAC library1. AK1 BAC end sequences (BES) were aligned to GRCh37, GRCh38 and AK1 assemblies using BWA. The BES placements were categorized by the alignment, orientation and separation of BES with respect to the assembly. The BES placement was determined to be concordant: (1) if the BES placement was placed in the same assembly unit; (2) if the paired end sequences were properly oriented; and (3) if the in silico insert size was between 50,000 and 250,000 bp. If the BES placements did not meet these conditions, the BES placement was defined to be discordant. In addition, if only one of the paired end sequences were aligned to the assembly, the BES placement was defined to be an orphan placement. If both paired-end sequences were unaligned to the assembly, the BES was defined to be unmapped. If either of the paired-end sequences were aligned to different positions of the assembly multiple times, the BES was defined to have multiple placements. To identify the precise genomic location of each assembly unit, we used LASTZ25 with parameters (-gapped -gap = 600,150,-hspthresh = 4500,-seed = 12of19 -notransition -ydrop = 15000-chain) to align each assembly unit to each chromosome in the human reference genome. Chaining procedure was followed to join the neighbouring local alignments into a single cohesive alignment. The chained alignments of each assembly unit were processed to obtain a single alignment with the best alignment score. If the selected alignment was not fully representative of the assembly unit, we selected a set of alignments that was better representative of the assembly unit. A netting procedure was then followed with the selected chained alignments. The chaining and netting procedures were applied using UCSC Kent tools26 and parallel processing was used when possible to increase computational speed. Gaps were classified into telomeric, centromeric, heterochromatic, acrocentric and euchromatic region according to the agp file and cytoband information provided by the Genome Reference Consortium (GRC) and UCSC genome browser. In total, 190 euchromatic gaps were targeted for gap closure with AK1 assembly. The gaps that could not be closed or extended with the AK1 assembly were subjected to closure through local assembly using Canu27 or a contiguous subread. Subreads mapped 10 kb upstream or downstream of the gap were chosen for local assembly. Alignment was performed with BLASR28 -bestn 3, and primary aligned reads with mapping quality of 254 were used. The assembled contigs were thereafter aligned to their respective gap position to precisely identify the added sequences. Subreads used to close the gaps were chosen following criteria described in the Supplementary Information. The alignments of the assembly to the reference genome were parsed to obtain SNPs, indels and SVs, which we defined as insertion, deletion, inversion and complex variants with event size equal to or greater than 50 bp. The complex SVs are the same as ‘double-sided insertion’ defined previously29. We used GRCh37 instead of GRCh38 for the main analysis for compatibility and comparison with previously reported structural variations. Repeat elements were annotated using RepeatMasker (-species human -no_is) and tandem repeat finder (TRF) (2 7 7 80 10 50 2000 -f -m -h -d). SVs are classified accordingly if it is masked by at least 70% with a single type. Complex is defined as the SVs having either several annotated repeat elements, or at least 30% of the remaining sequence not annotated as repeat. Novelty was identified by comparing the breakpoints with 50% reciprocal overlap criterion. Functional annotation was performed using both GENCODE release v19 (GRCh37) and v21 (GRCh38)30 and the Ensembl Regulatory Build31. For those SVs that occurred within gene regulatory domains, we annotated with the nearest gene name. SV located within pericentromeric regions (5 Mb flanking annotated centromeres) and subtelomeric regions (150 kb from the annotated telomeric sequence) were annotated as heterochromatin. Both pilot and strict accessibility genome mask regions (version 20141020) were downloaded from ftp://ftp.1000genomes.ebi.ac.uk/vol1/ftp/release/20130502/supporting/accessible_genome_masks/. Segmental duplication sites were downloaded from the UCSC table browser. To simplify categorization of the SVs that lie within multiple functional regions, they were classified according to the order of priority as follow: coding sequence, untranslated region, intron, transcription-factor-binding site, promoter, enhancer, CTCF (transcriptional repressor), and intergenic. To annotate whether the SVs called from GRCh37 were also shared with GRCh38 SV sets, we compared each AK1 breakpoints with 50% reciprocal overlap criterion. In addition, we assessed whether the SVs called from GRCh38 were also represented in the alternative contigs by measuring the concordance against the SV regions including the surrounding 50 bp from the breakpoints. Population allele frequency of SVs was obtained by aligning reads from 38 high-coverage samples from five different ancestral backgrounds (African, American, European, East Asian, and South Asian) to the AK1 assembly. We obtained whole-genome sequencing data of 23 individuals from the 1000 Genomes Project and we additionally sequenced 15 East Asian individuals (5 Japanese, 5 Chinese and 5 Koreans). Analysis candidates were selected from the insertions with less than 70% of repeats. We excluded any duplications among the insertions that are mapped to GRCh37 using BLAST (-evalue 1e-10 -perc_identity 90 -qcov_hsp_perc 90). The regions that have been recognized as mobile element or tandem repeat by RepeatMasker and TRF softwares were masked for analysis. Normalized read depth within the unique sequence was achieved by dividing the read depth, which was calculated using samtools bedcov, by the median genome coverage. The insertions were determined to be highly polymorphic if there were greater than or equal to 0.3 variant frequency differences across the different populations. Asian-specific insertions were chosen by selecting the insertions with equal or above 0.3 allele frequency difference between Asian and non-Asian population as well as non-Asian allele frequency with equal or below 0.5. Asian linkage disequilibrium blocks were obtained from East Asian samples in the 1,000 Genomes Project phase 3 using S-MIG++ algorithm32 (-maf 0.05 -ci AV -probability 0.95). Linkage disequilibrium blocks with below 0.8 haplotype diversity index were excluded. We performed phasing against the de novo assembly. SNPs and short indels called from whole-genome sequencing (72×) of short reads were phased with linked reads. The non-redundant set of PacBio subreads were aligned to the assembly, and corrections were applied by calculating the maximum likely variant allele for the phased variants based on the read depth. A phased block was defined as the region spanning two markers which had a subread or linked read information providing phasing. Similar to the linked reads, Illumina sequenced BAC phase information was used to correct phasing markers and extend phased blocks. Correction and other bioinformatics methods were performed using an in-house script, described in the Supplementary Information. Long-range switch error measurements were obtained using BAC end sequences. The end sequences were aligned to the AK1 assembly with bwa mem, and the base allele of the phasing marker site was called with the corresponding BAC information. When switching occurred for more than two marker sites in a phased block, it was defined as a long range switch. The long-range switch error rate was calculated as: no. of long range switches/no. of phasing markers. Using the final set of phasing markers, subreads were classified into sets of haplotype A or B when >85% of the phasing markers agreed. When a subread contained no marker, it was classified as homozygous. Through the read depth, phasing markers that were missed in previous steps were additionally called for homozygous regions adjacent to phased blocks. Subreads in haplotype A or homozygous regions were assembled into haplotig A, and haplotype B into haplotig B with Canu27. Haplotigs for MHC class I and II were assembled separately to avoid misassemblies owing to high sequence homology between HLA genes. In this case, subreads phased as homozygous were used with subreads of haplotype A and B. Homozygously phased subreads flanked on each side of a sequencing gap belonged on haplotype A and B, respectively, and were re-classified during assembly. Haplotype-specific variants were called following the assembly-based variation calling method. Owing to possibilities of false positives introduced by misassembly, phased variants that agreed with initial variants called with whole genome sequencing reads were used for further analysis. After functional annotation using GENCODE v19 (ref. 30), disease risk alleles were screened using ClinVar33. Haplotyping of CYP2D6 was done by comparing haplotigs to M33388 following CYP2D6 nomenclature. BACs identified to be discordant in size (>1 kb) were pooled and sequenced with the SMRT platform. The subreads were assembled using Canu27 after screening and removing Escherichia coli or vector sequences with CrossMatch34. The assembled BAC contigs were polished with Quiver. The BAC contigs were, thereafter, used to validate AK1 assembly-based or phase-specific SVs by assessing the concordance between the assembly and the BAC contig at sites of detected SVs. On the basis of the alignments of haplotigs to GRCh37, haplotig A and B were localized to compare partner sequences. The number of different bases were summed in every 5 Mb distance, and percentiled to draw in the Fig. 3a. RNA-seq reads were trimmed and aligned to GRCh37 using STAR aligner35 with the two-pass mapping strategy as recommended. Duplicates were removed using Picard tools, and variants were called using HaplotypeCaller and VariantFiltration following GATK best practices on RNA-seq36. Sites with supportive evidence of altered variation in RNA-seq have been extracted from the final vcf file, and ASEReadCounter37 was applied to remove reads with low base quality. Read counts are annotated to the phase-specific variants called from haplotigs using in-house scripts. When read depth for one allele was over 30, it was considered as ‘expressed’.


Patients with advanced non-small-cell lung cancer survive four months longer with fewer side effects on an immunotherapy drug called atezolizumab compared to chemotherapy, according to a phase 3 clinical trial published in The Lancet. The trial enrolled 1225 advanced non-small-cell lung cancer patients who have no more treatment options, but this study used an early analysis of the first 850 patients from the trial. Half of the group were given atezolizumab and the other half were given docetaxel chemotherapy, which is the standard treatment for advanced non-small-cell lung cancer. Patients given atezolizumab - a drug that blocks the programmed death ligand 1 (PD-L1) protein - survived for an average of 13.8 months, compared with 9.6 months for those on chemotherapy. As well as the benefits in survival, atezolizumab also had fewer side effects than chemotherapy with 14.8% (90 of 609) of those given the drug having grade three or four side effects compared with 42.7% (247 of 578) of those given chemotherapy. However, 46 (of 609, 7.6%) of the patients given atezolizumab still gave up treatment due to side effects, as well as 108 (of 578 patients, 18.7%) of those on chemotherapy. "Lung cancer is the most common cancer affecting 1.8 million people each year worldwide. It is also the leading cause of cancer death worldwide and survival remains stubbornly low. Recently, important advances in the treatment of the disease have come from immunotherapies that target the PD-L1 and PD-1 pathway," said Dr Achim Rittmeyer, lead author, University Goettingen, Germany. "Atezolizumab reinvigorates patients' immune systems against cancer, and our trial has shown that this has significant results for their survival." [1] In the trial the researchers also studied the amount of PD-L1 protein on the patients' cancer and immune cells and how long patients survived for on each treatment. They found that the drug worked best for patients with the highest levels of the PD-L1 protein on their cells - more than doubling survival compared with those given chemotherapy (20.5 months compared with 8.9 months overall survival) - but still increased survival for those with little to no levels of the protein by three and a half months (12.6 compared with 8.9 months overall survival). "This is the first phase 3 trial of a PD-L1-directed immunotherapy in lung cancer. The fact that it improves survival in patients with all categories of PD-L1 expression is highly encouraging and adds to the already known benefits of immunotherapy in lung cancer." said Dr David Gandara, senior author, UC Davis Comprehensive Cancer Center, USA. [1] Other immunotherapies for non-small-cell lung cancer, such as nivolumab and pembrolizumab, are designed to block PD-L1's counterpart, the programmed cell death protein 1 (PD-1) which is located on the immune cell surface. Normally the PD-L1 and PD-1 proteins signal to one another to activate the immune system to attack tumours. It's thought that the extra PD-L1 protein on some cancer cells' surfaces helps them hide from the immune system, meaning it cannot find and kill cancer cells as usual. But by blocking the extra PD-L1 protein, atezolizumab may unveil the cells to the immune system so they can be attacked and destroyed. The study is the first phase 3 trial of a PD-L1 inhibitor drug and has shown longer survival than trials of PD-1 inhibitors. The authors note that the trial was 'open label', meaning that patients and doctors knew whether or not they were being given immunotherapy. In addition, after the study treatment finished some (17%) of those given chemotherapy on the trial were prescribed another immunotherapy drug (mostly nivolumab) by their own doctor. This could have increased survival in the chemotherapy group, meaning that the difference between two groups may be greater than shown in this study. Writing in a linked Comment, Professor Elisabeth Quoix, Hôpitaux Universitaires de Strasbourg, France, said: "After decades of disappointments with non-specific vaccines or more recently tumor associated antigen specific vaccines, immunotherapy with antibodies that target the PD-L1 and PD-1 pathway have emerged as a major therapeutic breakthrough. This treatment improves the prognosis of patients with non-small-cell lung cancer that cannot benefit from targeted therapies... The time in which chemotherapy will no more be the mainstay of treatment of metastatic non-small-cell lung cancer is perhaps not so far away. Nevertheless... Several points need to be clarified, such as the optimum therapeutic schedule and the optimum duration of treatment, to limit treatment costs. Additionally combinations of different immunotherapies might be of interest." The study was funded by F. Hoffman-La Roche Ltd and Genentech Ltd.. It was conducted by scientists from Lungenfachklinik Immenhausen, Aix Marseille Universite, Sungkyunkwan University School of Medicine, Seconda Università degli Studi di Napoli, Asklepios Fachkliniken München-Gauting, Karmanos Cancer Institute/Wayne State University, Aichi Cancer Center Hospital, Institute M. Sklodowska-Curie, Hospital Regional Universitario Carlos Haya, AOU San Gerardo, Minnesota Oncology, Southern California Permanente Medical Group, PUCRS School of Medicine, University of California, Centro Internacional de Estudios Clinicos, European Institute of Oncology, Istanbul University Cerrahpasa Medical Faculty Hospital, Seoul National University Bundang Hospital, Genentech Inc. and UC Davis Comprehensive Cancer Center. A declaration of interests is available in the Article. [ 1] Quote direct from author and cannot be found in the text of the Article. IF YOU WISH TO PROVIDE A LINK FOR YOUR READERS, PLEASE USE THE FOLLOWING, WHICH WILL GO LIVE AT THE TIME THE EMBARGO LIFTS: http://www.thelancet.com/journals/lancet/article/PIIS0140-6736(16)32517-X/fulltext


News Article | December 6, 2016
Site: www.prweb.com

The International Vaccine Institute (IVI) and GeneOne Life Science Inc. have agreed to collaborate in developing a vaccine against the Middle East Respiratory Syndrome Coronavirus (MERS-CoV). The collaboration will accelerate MERS-CoV vaccine development so that a vaccine can be available in South Korea for emergency deployment in the event of a future outbreak. IVI and GeneOne held a signing ceremony at IVI headquarters at Seoul National University Research Park on December 6, 2016, where the two parties agreed to cooperate in MERS-CoV vaccine clinical development, and to ensure vaccine access to the Korean public health sector in case of an emergency and for public health programs. In attendance were IVI Director General Dr. Jerome Kim and GeneOne CEO Young K. Park. IVI and GeneOne plan to jointly conduct a clinical trial in Korea of GeneOne’s DNA-based MERS-CoV vaccine candidate, GLS-5300. IVI will provide support for the clinical trial and conduct other related activities including technical consultation and laboratory evaluations of the immune response in trial participants at its Seoul-based laboratory facilities. GeneOne additionally signed an agreement to supply GeneOne’s MERS-CoV vaccine for use in potential emergencies and public health programs in Korea. To this end, IVI and GeneOne would collaborate to obtain the necessary approvals from the Korean regulatory and health authorities. Despite the continuing threat of epidemics from this zoonotic respiratory disease, there is currently no licensed vaccine or treatment for MERS-CoV. As of December 2, 2016, the World Health Organization (WHO) reports 1,841 MERS cases and 652 (35.4%) deaths worldwide since MERS-CoV was first identified in Saudi Arabia in 2012. Since then, 27 countries have reported cases, including Korea where an outbreak took place in the summer of 2015 resulting in 186 cases and 38 deaths. GeneOne, a leading biotech company based in Korea, is developing the GLS-5300 DNA-based vaccine against MERS-CoV. GLS-5300 has been shown to prevent disease in pre-clinical animal studies. The vaccine is being evaluated in an ongoing Phase 1 clinical trial at the Walter Reed Army Institute of Research (Silver Spring, Maryland, USA) to test for safety and immune response of the vaccine. Dr. Jerome Kim, IVI Director General, said, “As an international organization devoted to vaccines for global public health, IVI looks forward to partnering with GeneOne, a Korean vaccine developer and manufacturer, whose vaccine looks very promising among the candidates in the MERS-CoV vaccine development pipeline worldwide,” adding, “IVI will closely work with GeneOne to accelerate the development of a MERS-CoV vaccine to increase the public health readiness of Korea and the world to effectively respond to a potential MERS outbreak.” Young K. Park, CEO of GeneOne, said, “GeneOne Life Science has committed to the clinical development of its MERS-CoV vaccine in the shortest possible period of time. GeneOne is a Korean company that is at the forefront of vaccine development for emerging infectious diseases. During the outbreak of MERS-CoV in our country, GeneOne committed its resources to advance a vaccine for MERS-CoV. We are hoping to be able to confront this disease that has so devastated the lives of many. This collaboration with IVI will advance vaccine development for MERS-CoV and improve outbreak readiness for Korea and worldwide.” GeneOne is developing the GLS-5300 MERS-CoV DNA vaccine with Inovio Pharmaceuticals, Inc. and academic collaborators. The GLS-5300 vaccine was manufactured at GeneOne’s subsidiary VGXI, Inc. located in the Woodlands Texas, USA. ABOUT IVI The International Vaccine Institute (IVI) is the world’s only international organization devoted exclusively to developing and introducing new and improved vaccines to protect the world’s poorest people, especially children in developing countries. Established in 1997, IVI operates as an independent international organization under a treaty signed by 35 countries and the World Health Organization. The Institute conducts research in more than 20 countries of Asia, Africa and Latin America on vaccines against enteric and diarrheal infections, Japanese encephalitis, MERS-CoV, and dengue fever, and develops new and improved vaccines at its headquarters in Seoul, Republic of Korea. For more information, please visit http://www.ivi.int. ABOUT GENEONE LIFE SCIENCE GeneOne is an international company focused on finding gene-based solutions to clinical disease. GeneOne is at the forefront of DNA vaccine and DNA-based therapeutic development. GeneOne is currently spearheading clinical trials of vaccines for the Zika virus, MERS-CoV, Ebola and other infectious diseases. GeneOne has a rich pipeline of products targeting multiple cancers and diseases of man. GeneOne’s wholly-owned subsidiary VGXI, Inc. (http://www.vgxii.com) has 15 years of experience in the manufacture of DNA plasmid vaccines and therapeutics and has the distinction of making vaccines for Zika, MERS-CoV, and Ebola for use in human clinical trials. GeneOne is headquartered in Seoul, South Korea. For more information, visit http://www.genels.com. Cautionary Factors That May Affect Future Results Materials in this press release contain information that includes or is based upon forward-looking statements within the meaning of the Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. Forward-looking statements relate to expectations or forecasts of future events. These statements can be identified by the fact that they do not relate strictly to historical or current facts. They include words such as “anticipate,” “estimate,” “expect,” “project,” “intend,” “plan,” “believe,” and other words and terms of similar meaning in connection with a discussion of potential future events, circumstances or future operating or financial performance. In particular, these include statements relating to future actions, prospective products or product approvals, future performance or results of current and anticipated products, sales efforts, expenses, the outcome of contingencies such as legal proceedings, and financial results. Any or all of our forward-looking statements here or in other publications may turn out to be incorrect. They can be affected by inaccurate assumptions or by known or unknown risks and uncertainties. Many such factors will be important in determining our actual future results. Consequently, no forward-looking statement can be guaranteed, and forward-looking statements may be adversely affected by factors, including general market conditions, competitive product development, product availability, current and future branded and generic competition, federal and state regulations and legislation, manufacturing issues, timing of the elimination of trade buying, patent positions, litigations and investigations. Our actual results may vary materially, and there are no guarantees about the performance or valuation of GeneOne stock. It is also important to read the disclosure notice contained in many of the individual GeneOne documents available on the website, as many contain important information on such cautionary factors as of the date of the individual document. We undertake no obligation to correct or update any forward-looking statements, whether as a result of new information, future events or otherwise. You are advised, however, to consult any further disclosures we make on related subjects in our reports.


News Article | March 25, 2016
Site: phys.org

Unmanned ships (i.e. robotic ships or drone ships) have received relatively little media attention compared to aerial drones and self-driving cars. However, their potential benefit and impact to scientific, defense, and industrial applications could be immense. Researchers at Korea Advanced Institute of Science and Technology (KAIST) have been developing technologies to enable and facilitate the realization of unmanned autonomous ships in the near future. Aerial drones and self-driving cars have been prominently featured in news headlines lately. Although there are numerous technical challenges and skepticism in fully replacing manned vehicle systems with unmanned ones, their common appearance in our daily lives does not seem to be very far away. Compared to unmanned aerial and ground vehicles, relatively little public attention has been paid to unmanned robotic ships, which are more commonly known as unmanned surface vessels (USVs). In fact, USVs have long attracted research interest in defense sectors for their applicability toward unmanned reconnaissance and surveillance missions. Recently, greater emphasis has been placed on USV intelligence and autonomy, and, in particular, USV usage in scientific and industrial applications has been more seriously investigated. In line with this, the inaugural Maritime RobotX Challenge (MRC), sponsored by the U.S. Office of Naval Research (ONR), was held in Singapore in 2014. The competition was composed of five mission tasks that were designed considering the capability and potential applicability of USVs in the future. Intelligence was a key factor, and all the mission tasks were required to be performed autonomously with no human intervention. Team "Angry Nerds" led by Prof. Jinwhan Kim in the Department of Mechanical Engineering at KAIST participated in the competition. After a fierce week-long competition, the KAIST team advanced to the final and took the second place out of 15 teams from many world-renowned universities including KAIST, Seoul National University, MIT, University of Tokyo, and National University of Singapore(See Figure. 1(a)). The KAIST research team has continued to carry out research projects for developing USV system technologies, funded by the Korean government. The team has been particularly focusing on developing vehicle autonomy and perception capabilities by fusing various sensor information. The developed USV system is expected to be applied to time-consuming and/or dangerous operations in marine environments such as hydrographic surveys, environmental monitoring, illegal fishing control, pollution management, and search and rescue (See Figure. 1(b)). The team is also pursuing research towards automation of commercial ships for improved operational safety and efficiency. This has been an important issue in marine shipbuilding and transportation industries with increasing labor and energy costs and the new energy efficiency regulations imposed by the International Maritime Organization (IMO). Major research institutions and companies in Europe are already devoting great research effort (see Figure. 2), and KAIST has been trying to support the world's leading Korean shipbuilding industries to maintain their competitiveness and initiatives in next-generation shipping technology.


News Article | November 24, 2016
Site: www.eurekalert.org

A common species of Asian tree frog may actually be two separate species according to new genetic data collected by an international group of scientists. If the two groups of frogs are confirmed to be different species, assigning their scientific names may require searching historical records of foreign explorers in Japan during the 1800s. Before the frogs are officially recognized as two separate species, researchers will test if individual frogs from the two groups have unique physical or behavioral features and if they can produce healthy offspring. The project began when researchers at European universities expanded their studies on sex determination and population dynamics in amphibians to include Asian species. The species of tree frog that they chose, Hyla japonica, is found throughout Japan, the Korean peninsula, eastern China, and eastern Russia. Collaborators around the world began sending genetic samples from local frog populations to discover their evolutionary relationships. The data revealed evolutionarily distinct groups of frogs in Japan, the Korean peninsula, and eastern Russia. Ancestors of the modern frog populations likely traveled either into or out of Japan by two separate routes: from the North on a chain of islands between Russia and Japan, and from the South along a land bridge on the Philippine Sea Plate between South Korea and Japan. Japanese H. japonica populations may have been isolated into separate East and West groups. Researchers are exploring this possibility in more detail with an ongoing research project led by Ikuo Miura, PhD, an Associate Professor in Amphibian Research Center at Hiroshima University. The same separation between East and West Japan is known in other species of frogs and skinks. Miura explains that the scientific community has no definitive information about exactly what caused the divide between East and West Japan, but suggests the possibility of the expansion of ancient basin associated with volcanic activity in central Japan. Miura and Yuya Higaki, a fourth-year bachelor's degree student, are currently running genetic analysis on 50 populations of H. japonica from across Japan. They will present their preliminary results on November 26th at the annual conference of the Herpetological Society of Japan. This project is part of Miura's larger research interests in sex determination and its influence on speciation and evolution. If H. japonica is recognized as two separate species, it will be challenging for researchers to decide which species should keep the original name due to the mystery surrounding which population of H. japonica was used for the original species characterization in 1858. The German-British naturalist Albert Gunther named H. japonica after examining a specimen collected years earlier, potentially in 1826, by Philipp Siebold and Heinrich Burger, German botanists and physicians who were among the first Westerners granted official access to Japan. The modern research team visited the British Museum of Natural History to inspect the original specimen, but the location of where Siebold and Burger collected the first H. japonica is recorded only as "Japan." For now, naming the species will remain a historical mystery secondary to the ongoing scientific questions. The current research paper is published in the November 23, 2016 issue of BioMed Central Evolutionary Biology. Authors of the paper are based at the University of Lausanne (Switzerland), Leibniz-Institute of Freshwater Ecology and Inland Fisheries (Germany), Russian Academy of Sciences, Seoul National University, Ewha Woman's University (Republic of Korea), Chinese Academy of Sciences, and Hiroshima University. The species Hyla japonica is listed as Least Concern on the International Union for the Conservation of Nature (ICUN) Red List. Find more Hiroshima University news on our Facebook page: http://www. More information about the Hiroshima University Amphibian Research Center is available in both English and Japanese on their website: http://home. Information about the Herpetological Society of Japan is available in both English and Japanese on their website: http://herpetology. Academic Paper Citation: Dufresnes C, Litvinchuk SN, Borzee A, Jang Y, Li J, Miura I, Perrin N, Stock M. Phylogeography reveals an ancient cryptic radiation in East-Asian tree frogs (Hyla japonica group) and complex relationships between continental and island lineages. BioMed Central Evolutionary Biology. 23 November 2016.


News Article | December 13, 2016
Site: www.marketwired.com

A new Asia Society Policy Institute report offers perspectives for the incoming president from regional leaders across Asia who have experienced first-hand the challenges of managing the region's complex relationships WASHINGTON, DC --(Marketwired - December 13, 2016) - Donald Trump's surprise win in the U.S. presidential election last month has left leaders throughout the world on edge about what this shift in American leadership will mean for their countries. This is particularly true in Asia, where many countries received mixed signals from Trump during his campaign on how he intends to approach regional trade, security issues, and long-standing U.S. alliances in the region. In a briefing book titled Advice for the 45th U.S. President: Opinions from Across the Pacific, the Asia Society Policy Institute (ASPI) has compiled voices from a range of leaders throughout Asia expressing their hopes and advice for the incoming president. Below are excerpts from each contributor. Shivshankar Menon Chairman of the Advisory Board of the Institute of Chinese Studies in New Delhi and former Indian National Security Adviser The two things that leaders in the Asia-Pacific region wish to hear and see from President Trump are an assurance that the United States will continue to provide and underwrite security in the Asia-Pacific and that it will remain a benign hegemon, opening its economy to friends and allies. Without this confidence, Asian leaders could turn to other expedients, and to China, for the prosperity and security they seek. The greatest strategic challenge confronting leaders in the region is whether the United States and China will be able to resolve their strategic competition and arrive at a new equilibrium peacefully. No Asia-Pacific country wants to have to choose between the United States and China. During the past two centuries, the United States has had a proven record in the region as a benign hegemon. China does not. But over the past decade, U.S. presence and attention have been sporadic, and since 2008, the U.S. willingness to open its markets and lead the economies of the region has been in question. Yoriko Kawaguchi Japan's former Minister for Foreign Affairs and Minister of the Environment The post-war liberal international economic order, which the United States helped establish, has facilitated increased trade, investment, and technology flows and created strong interdependence between countries in the region. All of us — the United States, Japan, and others — have benefited greatly from this order. None of this prosperity would have been possible without the peace and stability the U.S. presence has provided. This is why regional countries are now so concerned about potential shifts in U.S. foreign policy under a new administration. The Trump team could help to reduce uncertainty for its regional partners by imparting a message of "continuity." Asian partners are waiting to hear that the mutually beneficial relationships we have enjoyed with the United States for many years — relationships that are based on interdependence and respect — will continue and hopefully be strengthened further. Wang Jisi President of the Institute of International and Strategic Studies at Peking University A fundamental and urgent issue for leaders in both Washington and Beijing is how to reduce strategic distrust. A popular view among Chinese political elites is that the United States intends to undermine Chinese Communist Party leadership by supporting dissidents, spreading American ideology in Chinese society, and encouraging pro-independence or separatist tendencies in Taiwan, Hong Kong, Tibet, and Xinjiang. Another strong belief in China is that the United States is working to contain China internationally by consolidating U.S. security alliances and military arrangements and involving itself in territorial disputes between China and some neighboring countries. ... On the U.S. side, many are suspicious that today's China, with enhanced power and strong leadership, will try to reshape the current world order that has by-and-large served U.S. interests and goals thus far. … These mutual suspicions are real and have served to intensify the strategic competition between the two countries. However, we should not let them overshadow the common interests the two countries share. Seokyoung Choi Visiting Professor at the Graduate School of International Studies at Seoul National University and former Permanent Representative of the Republic of Korea to the World Trade Organization The post-World War II global economic order, whose creation was led by the United States, is based on open markets, free trade, and the free movement of capital. However, as we have witnessed during the recent U.S. electoral cycle, trade has become an easy but misplaced target for those angered by the ill effects of globalization. Research has proved that job losses and wage stagnation have been driven primarily by technological changes and domestic policy choices, not by trade liberalization. If trade becomes a scapegoat for all of globalization's challenges, nations risk forfeiting a powerful tool for growth and needed economic reform. It is therefore imperative that the United States leads in making a stronger and more effective case for the value of international trade. The United States built its economy on the promise of open trade and global engagement; It must stand together with Asians to help them do the same. Chan Heng Chee Ambassador-at-large for the Singapore Foreign Ministry and former Ambassador of the Republic of Singapore to the United States While the Philippines has been more open and dramatic about the switch in its orientation and mindset, in reality, some ASEAN states have been realigning toward China in differing degrees for quite some time. Cambodia and Laos, and to some extent Thailand, Brunei, and Malaysia, have all moved into the Chinese orbit without fanfare. Yet it would be wrong to believe that most ASEAN countries are only interested in one set of relationships. In fact, given their economic, trade, and cultural ties, ASEAN countries want to engage with all the major powers in the world, and in particular to enjoy good relationships with both the United States and China. And they also want the United States and China to enjoy good relations with each other. ASEAN understands that better relations between the United States and China makes life easier for the smaller and middle-sized countries in Asia. With this as background and bearing in mind the election rhetoric and the inward-looking and protectionist mood of the U.S. electorate, it is crucial that the first message Asian countries hear from President-elect Trump is one of continuity, emphasizing that the United States means to stay in Asia, that U.S. engagement with Asia and ASEAN will remain unchanged, and that America's word is good. Peter Jennings Executive Director of the Australian Strategic Policy Institute and former Deputy Secretary for Strategy in the Australian Department of Defense The new Trump administration faces three challenges. It needs to reassure jittery allies of the U.S. commitment to Asia by increasing its diplomatic and military presence. New secretaries of state and defense should expect to log many air miles to the region, overcoming local worries that the U.S. underestimates the region's big strategic challenges and is too focused on the intractable Middle East. Second, the new administration must craft new language expressing America's priorities and purpose in Asia. This must replace the Obama's administration's rather haphazard use of "pivot" and "rebalance" to describe its Asia policy. In practice, neither term was credibly enacted. The Trans-Pacific Partnership trade deal languishes and several promised military enhancements have been delayed. Finally, the administration should lift its expectations of its partners. American resentment of allies' free-riding on the coat tails of U.S. defense spending is justified. If allies want the confidence of America's steady hand shaping Asian security, Washington should be clear about what it wants in return. The alliances will work better if all parties lift their expectations of the resources and defense cooperation needed. Ken Koyama Chief Economist and Managing Director for Japan's Institute for Energy Economics The United States can help Asian countries promote energy efficiency and cleaner energy development. This can be done by supporting Asian countries' strategic efforts to increase the share of cleaner energy sources such as natural gas, nuclear power, and renewable energy. ... But it is also important for the United States to have a better understanding of the energy reality in Asia, namely the reality that coal is likely to remain a key component of Asia's energy mix for the foreseeable future. In this context, wider use of clean-coal technologies should be an important part of Asian energy policies. With better understanding of this reality, the United States can be an important research, development, and trade partner with Asian countries to promote cleaner coal use while supporting their efforts to reduce coal dependence. Indians like the United States of America. More specifically, young Indians like the United States. According to a June 2016 survey by the Pew Research Center, 49 percent of Indians older than age 50 have a favorable view of the United States. When you look at Indians between ages 18 and 34, however, a considerably larger proportion (61 percent) hold positive views. This generational difference in perceptions of the United States -- a 12 percentage point gap between the old and young -- is one of the largest such divergences in the world right now. The gap is made all the more important given that most Indians are quite young; half of the population is younger than age 27. The data represents a trend: more and more young Indians admire the United States. They seem to sense the shared values of democracy, freedom, and entrepreneurship. When they can, these young Indians vote with their feet: 132,888 Indian students were enrolled in U.S. schools and colleges in 2015. When they can, many of them stay on to build their own versions of the American dream, even while maintaining strong links to the land of their birth. American soft power is alive and well in India. During the U.S. presidential campaign, President-elect Trump argued that global efforts to address climate change, such as the Paris Climate Agreement, were a "bad deal" that posed an unnecessary burden for business. Although he initially indicated he could withdraw from the Paris Agreement, he has more recently suggested that he has an open mind. I would urge him to reconsider his opposition to climate change cooperation. As more than 300 U.S. businesses recently argued in an open letter, failing to invest in a more energy-efficient and green future will be a "bad deal" for long-term U.S. interests. … The overwhelming majority of countries on the planet are marching on toward a more green and sustainable economy. Ultimately, U.S. businesses and the economy will lose by disengaging from this progress. And, in turn, U.S. disengagement means that everyone loses -- even China is warning the United States against abandoning the Paris Agreement. Lindsey W. Ford, Director of Asian Security at ASPI, edited the briefing book. ASPI hosted a launch event today in Washington, D.C. featuring Ahn Ho-young, Ambassador of the Republic of Korea to the U.S.; Wendy Cutler, Vice President of the Asia Society Policy Institute; Joe Hockey, Ambassador of Australia to the U.S.; Ashok Mirpuri, Ambassador of Singapore to the U.S.; and Kevin Rudd, President of the Asia Society Policy Institute and the former Prime Minister of Australia. About the Asia Society Policy Institute With a problem-solving mandate, the Asia Society Policy Institute tackles major policy challenges confronting the Asia-Pacific in security, prosperity, sustainability, and the development of common norms and values for the region. The Institute builds on the mission of the Asia Society, which has sought for 60 years to explain the diversity of Asia to the United States and the complexity of the United States to Asia, and to be a bridge in problem-solving within the region and between Asia and the wider world.


News Article | March 22, 2016
Site: www.cemag.us

Attempting to free people with diabetes from frequent finger-pricks and drug injections, researchers have created an electronic skin patch that senses excess glucose in sweat and automatically administers drugs by heating up microneedles that penetrate the skin. The prototype was developed by Dae-Hyeong Kim, assistant professor at Seoul National University and researchers at MC10, a flexible-electronics company in Lexington, Mass. Two years ago the same group prototyped a patch aimed at Parkinson’s patients that diagnoses tremors and delivers drugs stored inside nanoparticles. Other efforts to develop minimally invasive glucose monitoring have used ultrasound and optical measurements to detect glucose levels. And a variety of skin patches could deliver insulin or metformin, a popular drug used to treat type 2 diabetes. But the new prototype incorporates both detection and drug delivery in one device. The patch, described in a paper in Nature Nanotechnology, is made of graphene studded with gold particles and contains sensors that detect humidity, glucose, pH, and temperature. The enzyme-based glucose sensor takes into account pH and temperature to improve the accuracy of the glucose measurements taken from sweat. If the patch senses high glucose levels, heaters trigger microneedles to dissolve a coating and release the drug metformin just below the skin surface. “This is the first closed-loop epidermal system that has both monitoring and the noninvasive delivery of diabetes drugs directly to the subject,” says Roozbeh Ghaffari, cofounder of MC10. The only minimally invasive technology for monitoring blood glucose ever approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration was a gadget called the GlucoWatch Biographer, which used an electrical current to extract fluids from beneath the skin. It was approved in 2001, but patients complained of discomfort and sores, and the device was pulled from the market in 2007. Other researchers are using different approaches to help people with diabetes. A device recently prototyped at the University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill, consists of a fingernail-size patch with more than 100 microneedles that contain tiny sacs full of insulin and an enzyme. Glucose in the blood permeates the sac. The enzyme converts the glucose into an acid that opens the sac to release insulin as the needles prick the skin. That approach would deliver insulin when needed. But the MC10 device, as an electronic platform, could also store data on drug delivery activity and transmit it to a wearable device that could then wirelessly transmit it to a smartphone. Source: MIT


Kundu J.K.,Keimyung University | Surh Y.-J.,Seoul National University
Free Radical Biology and Medicine | Year: 2012

The role of inflammation in carcinogenesis has been extensively investigated and well documented. Many biochemical processes that are altered during chronic inflammation have been implicated in tumorigenesis. These include shifting cellular redox balance toward oxidative stress; induction of genomic instability; increased DNA damage; stimulation of cell proliferation, metastasis, and angiogenesis; deregulation of cellular epigenetic control of gene expression; and inappropriate epithelial-to-mesenchymal transition. A wide array of proinflammatory cytokines, prostaglandins, nitric oxide, and matricellular proteins are closely involved in premalignant and malignant conversion of cells in a background of chronic inflammation. Inappropriate transcription of genes encoding inflammatory mediators, survival factors, and angiogenic and metastatic proteins is the key molecular event in linking inflammation and cancer. Aberrant cell signaling pathways comprising various kinases and their downstream transcription factors have been identified as the major contributors in abnormal gene expression associated with inflammation-driven carcinogenesis. The posttranscriptional regulation of gene expression by microRNAs also provides the molecular basis for linking inflammation to cancer. This review highlights the multifaceted role of inflammation in carcinogenesis in the context of altered cellular redox signaling. © 2012 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.


Tanwani A.,French Institute for Research in Computer Science and Automation | Shim H.,Seoul National University | Liberzon D.,University of Illinois at Urbana - Champaign
IEEE Transactions on Automatic Control | Year: 2013

This paper presents a characterization of observability and an observer design method for switched linear systems with state jumps. A necessary and sufficient condition is presented for observability, globally in time, when the system evolves under predetermined mode transitions. Because this characterization depends upon the switching signal under consideration, the existence of singular switching signals is studied alongside developing a sufficient condition that guarantees uniform observability with respect to switching times. Furthermore, while taking state jumps into account, a relatively weaker characterization is given for determinability, the property that concerns with recovery of the original state at some time rather than at all times. Assuming determinability of the system, a hybrid observer is designed for the most general case to estimate the state of the system and it is shown that the estimation error decays exponentially. Since the individual modes of the switched system may not be observable, the proposed strategy for designing the observer is based upon a novel idea of accumulating the information from individual subsystems. Contrary to the usual approach, dwell-time between switchings is not necessary, but the proposed design does require persistent switching. For practical purposes, the calculations also take into account the time consumed in performing computations. © 1963-2012 IEEE.


Suh H.N.,Chonnam National University | Han H.J.,Seoul National University
Journal of Cellular Physiology | Year: 2011

Adhesion of cells to extracellular matrix (ECM) influences vital aspects of anchorage-dependent cell behavior including survival, proliferation, and differentiation. However, the role of collagen I in mouse embryonic stem cells (mESCs) is not well-known. Therefore, in the present study we examined the effect of collagen I on mESC self-renewal and related signal pathways. Collagen I (10μg/ml) maintained mESCs in an undifferentiated state (Nanog, OCT4, and SSEA-1) and did not affect differentiation (GATA4, Tbx5, Fgf5, and Cdx2) in the presence of leukemia inhibitory factor (LIF). Treatment with collagen I bound both α2β1 integrin and discoidin domain receptor 1 (DDR1), and stimulated intracellular signaling pathways. Collagen I-bound α2β1 integrin increased integrin-linked kinase (ILK) phosphorylation, cleaved Notch protein expression in the nuclear fraction, and Gli-1 mRNA expression. In addition, collagen I-bound DDR1 increased GTP-bound Ras, phosphoinositide 3-kinase (PI3K) p85α catalytic subunit protein expression, and Akt and ERK phosphorylation. Importantly, collagen I increased Bmi-1 protein expression in the nucleus which was blocked by small interfering RNA (siRNA) specific for Gli-1 and ERK, showing that parallel pathways of integrins and DDR1 merge at Bmi-1. Furthermore, collagen I-induced p16 decrease and p-Rb increase were reversed by Bmi-1-specific siRNA. Moreover, Bmi-1 silencing abolished the collagen I-induced increase of proliferation indices and undifferentiation markers. These results indicate that collagen I stimulates the self-renewal of mESCs mediated by Bmi-1 through α2β1 integrin-dependent ILK, Notch, Gli-1, and DDR1-dependent Ras, PI3K/Akt, and ERK. © 2011 Wiley-Liss, Inc.


Kim H.,Hanyang University | Jeong G.,Korea Electronics Technology Institute | Kim Y.-U.,Samsung | Kim J.-H.,Kookmin University | And 2 more authors.
Chemical Society Reviews | Year: 2013

Li-air(O2) and Li-S batteries have gained much attention recently and most relevant research has aimed to improve the electrochemical performance of air(O2) or sulfur cathode materials. However, many technical problems associated with the Li metal anode have yet to be overcome. This review mainly focuses on the electrochemical behaviors and technical issues related to metallic Li anode materials as well as other metallic anode materials such as alkali (Na) and alkaline earth (Mg) metals, including Zn and Al when these metal anodes were employed for various types of secondary batteries. This journal is © The Royal Society of Chemistry.


Pang C.,Seoul National University | Lee G.-Y.,Seoul National University | Kim T.-I.,University of Illinois at Urbana - Champaign | Kim S.M.,Seoul National University | And 3 more authors.
Nature Materials | Year: 2012

Flexible skin-attachable strain-gauge sensors are an essential component in the development of artificial systems that can mimic the complex characteristics of the human skin. In general, such sensors contain a number of circuits or complex layered matrix arrays. Here, we present a simple architecture for a flexible and highly sensitive strain sensor that enables the detection of pressure, shear and torsion. The device is based on two interlocked arrays of high-aspect-ratio Pt-coated polymeric nanofibres that are supported on thin polydimethylsiloxane layers. When different sensing stimuli are applied, the degree of interconnection and the electrical resistance of the sensor changes in a reversible, directional manner with specific, discernible strain-gauge factors. The sensor response is highly repeatable and reproducible up to 10,000 cycles with excellent on/off switching behaviour. We show that the sensor can be used to monitor signals ranging from human heartbeats to the impact of a bouncing water droplet on a superhydrophobic surface. © 2012 Macmillan Publishers Limited. All rights reserved.


Xiang D.,Seoul National University | Jeong H.,Seoul National University | Lee T.,Seoul National University | Mayer D.,Jülich Research Center
Advanced Materials | Year: 2013

A mechanically controllable break junction (MCBJ) represents a fundamental technique for the investigation of molecular electronic junctions, especially for the study of the electronic properties of single molecules. With unique advantages, the MCBJ technique has provided substantial insight into charge transport processes in molecules. In this review, the techniques for sample fabrication, operation and the various applications of MCBJs are introduced and the history, challenges and future of MCBJs are discussed. A mechanically controllable break junction (MCBJ) represents a fundamental technique for the investigation of molecular electronic junctions, especially for the study of electron transport through single molecules. This review summarizes the progress of the MCBJ technique including sample fabrication, potential applications, and challenges. Copyright © 2013 WILEY-VCH Verlag GmbH & Co. KGaA, Weinheim.


Muthiah M.,Chonnam National University | Park I.-K.,Chonnam National University | Cho C.-S.,Seoul National University
Biotechnology Advances | Year: 2013

Superparamagnetic iron oxide nanoparticles (SPIONs) are excellent MR contrast agents when coated with biocompatible polymers such as hydrophilic synthetic polymers, proteins, polysaccharides, and lipids, which improve their stability and biocompatibility and reduce their aggregation. Various biocompatible materials, coated or conjugated with targeting moieties such as galactose, mannose, folic acid, antibodies and RGD, have been applied to SPION surfaces to provide tissue specificity to hepatocytes, macrophages, and tumor regions in order to reduce non-specific uptake and improve biocompatibility. This review discusses the recent progress in the development of biocompatible and hydrophilic polymers for improving stability of SPIONs and describes the carbohydrates based biocompatible materials that are providing SPIONs with cell/tissue specificity as ligands. © 2013 Elsevier Inc.


Patent
Sansung Electronics Co. and Seoul National University | Date: 2014-07-23

A method and an apparatus for performing transmission power selection of a wireless access device and channel allocation in a combination manner, for resource management optimized for a wireless network environment supporting multimedia traffic are provided. In a method for managing a radio resource of at least one Access Point (AP) in a wireless communication network, a transmission power select operation for the AP is performed on each of a plurality of channel settings, and a network performance value is predicted. Optimized channel setting is selected among the plurality of channel settings depending on the predicted network performance value. The optimized channel setting and optimized transmission power corresponding to the optimized channel setting are allocated to the AP.


Patent
Seoul National University, Stanford University and Kyungpook National University | Date: 2012-10-17

The present invention provides a silicon-compatible compound junctionless field effect transistor enabled to be compatible to a bulk silicon substrate for substituting an expensive SOI substrate, to form a blocking semiconductor layer between a silicon substrate and an active layer by a semiconductor material having a specific difference of energy bandgap from that of the active layer to substitute a prior buried oxide for blocking a leakage current at an off-operation time and to form the active layer by a semiconductor layer having electron or hole mobility higher than that of silicon, and to operate perfectly as a junctionless device though the dopant concentration of the active layer is much lower than the prior junctionless device.


Patent
Seoul National University and Kyungpook National University | Date: 2015-04-16

Disclosed herein is an anti-inflammatory pharmaceutical composition comprising a benzopyranyl tetracycle compound represented by Chemical Formula 1 as an active ingredient. The compound exhibits excellent anti-inflammatory activity by perturbing the post-translational modification of the inflammation mediator HMGB, and thus finds applications in pharmaceutical compositions superior in the treatment or prevention of inflammation-related diseases.


Patent
President And Fellows Of Harvard College and Seoul National University | Date: 2016-06-03

The invention features a composition comprising a self-healing interpenetrating network hydrogel comprising a first network and a second network. The first network comprises covalent crosslinks and the second network comprises ionic or physical crosslinks. For example, the first network comprises a polyacrylamide polymer and second network comprises an alginate polymer.


Grant
Agency: Cordis | Branch: FP7 | Program: CP | Phase: ICT-2009.1.1 | Award Amount: 3.86M | Year: 2010

There is a wide consensus among telecom vendors and operators that the next decade will see a mlange of evolving Internet architectures embedded into high-bandwidth technologies and carrier-grade systems for control and management. The combined Internet Protocol (IP) and Ethernet-based optical transport solutions are expected to drastically lower capital and operational expenses and improve overall network performance. Central to this premise is the concept of autonomic network management, offering a radical improvement in the way Internet can interact with the transport layers, making automated use of available capacity and physical interconnectivity.Unfortunately, practice lags far behind this promise. The segmentation of IP and carrier-grade technologies has not only produced the carriers organizational separation, but also a fragmentation of the technical competence through separate Network Management Systems (NMSs). In the isolated Internet and carrier-grade management ecosystems, even simple operations, such as IP link upgrades, require multiple human-assisted configurations, and are far from automation. As a result, carriers are seeking ways to alleviate the dependency on manual processes that do not only create management expenditures, but also lead to a heavy overprovision of the IP network.In the project ONE, we propose to alleviate the current isolation between the IP and carrier-grade management ecosystems. As first step towards a commercially-viable autonomic management solution, we plan to design and prototype an ontology-based communication adapter between the two NMS systems, enabling: i) automated provisioning of IP topologies and services; ii) policy-based setup/release of resources; and iii) coordinated self-healing. We emphasize that the solution does not aim to integrate the NMSs, but it should enable their communication, and thus effectively exploit a set of common objectives as they evolve in future systems.


Grant
Agency: Cordis | Branch: H2020 | Program: RIA | Phase: PHC-21-2015 | Award Amount: 5.17M | Year: 2016

Background We propose a holistic view of interrelated frailties: cognitive decline, physical frailty, depression and anxiety, social isolation and poor sleep quality, which are a major burden to older adults and social and health care systems. Early detection and intervention are crucial in sustaining active and healthy ageing (AHA) and slowing or reversing further decline. Aims and Relevance The main aim of my-AHA is to reduce frailty risk by improving physical activity and cognitive function, psychological state, social resources, nutrition, sleep and overall well-being. It will empower older citizens to better manage their own health, resulting in healthcare cost savings. my-AHA will use state-of-the-art analytical concepts to provide new ways of health monitoring and disease prevention through individualized profiling and personalized recommendations, feedback and support. Approach An ICT-based platform will detect defined risks in the frailty domains early and accurately via non-stigmatising embedded sensors and data readily available in the daily living environment of older adults. When risk is detected, my-AHA will provide targeted ICT-based interventions with a scientific evidence base of efficacy, including vetted offerings from established providers of medical and AHA support. These interventions will follow an integrated approach to motivate users to participate in exercise, cognitively stimulating games and social networking to achieve long-term behavioural change, sustained by continued end user engagement with my-AHA. Scale and Sustainability The proposed platform provides numerous incentives to engage diverse stakeholders, constituting a sustainable ecosystem with empowered end users and reliable standardised interfaces for solutions providers, which will be ready for larger scale deployment at project end. The ultimate aim is to deliver significant innovation in the area of AHA by cooperation with European health care organizations, SMEs, NGOs.


Patent
Seoul National University and Chonnam National University | Date: 2016-02-22

Disclosed are a nitrogen oxide reduction catalyst and a method of preparing the same. The nitrogen oxide reduction catalyst includes a titanium oxide nanostructure as an active metal support, wherein the titanium oxide nanostructure has a polycrystalline structure formed through hydrothermal synthesis using a lithium hydroxide solution. The method of preparing the nitrogen oxide reduction catalyst includes mixing a lithium hydroxide solution with titanium oxide, wherein the titanium oxide is converted into a polycrystalline titanium oxide nanostructure by the lithium hydroxide solution.


Patent
Seoul National University and Institute For Basic Science | Date: 2016-02-26

Disclosed are a stretchable electronic device for artificial skin and a method of manufacturing the same, wherein the stretchable electronic device for artificial skin includes a first encapsulation layer, a heater disposed on the first encapsulation layer, a second encapsulation layer disposed on the heater, a first sensor array layer disposed on the second encapsulation layer, and a third encapsulation layer disposed on the first sensor array layer.


Kim D.-H.,Seoul National University | Ghaffari R.,MC10 Inc | Lu N.,University of Texas at Austin | Rogers J.A.,University of Illinois at Urbana - Champaign
Annual Review of Biomedical Engineering | Year: 2012

Advances in materials, mechanics, and manufacturing now allow construction of high-quality electronics and optoelectronics in forms that can readily integrate with the soft, curvilinear, and time-dynamic surfaces of the human body. The resulting capabilities create new opportunities for studying disease states, improving surgical procedures, monitoring healthwellness, establishing human-machine interfaces, and performing other functions. This review summarizes these technologies and illustrates their use in forms integrated with the brain, the heart, and the skin.Copyright © 2012 by Annual Reviews. All rights reserved.


A soy isoflavone derivative that goes by the scientific moniker, (S)-equol, has proven potent for mitigating menopausal symptoms. However, it has been impossible to produce in quantities sufficient for widespread commercial nutraceutical production. But now, a team of Korean researchers reports having constructed a recombinant bacterium which they say can boost production. The research is published January 22nd in Applied and Environmental Microbiology, a journal of the American Society for Microbiology. Equol is produced naturally in small quantities by the human intestine-abiding bacterium, Slackia isoflavoniconvertens. Clinical studies have shown that this compound reduces hot flashes, night sweats, bone loss, and other menopausal symptoms, with no harmful side effects, and studies in several human cell lines suggest that it might eventually prove to prevent prostate cancer. But the anaerobic S. isoflavoniconvertens' productivity was too low for large-scale production, and that bacterium doesn't work well with industrial fermenters, said lead investigator Byung-Gee Kim, PhD, a professor in the Department of Chemical and Biological Engineering, Seoul National University, Seoul, Korea. To increase production of (S)-equol, the investigators cloned the enzymes of the compound's biosynthetic pathway into a strain of the laboratory bacterium, Escherichia coli, which is commonly used, among other things, for industrial purposes. But although this bacterium enabled easier control of production, and although the investigators assembled optimum environmental conditions for the bacterium, including its preferred acidity level and temperature, the yield still remained too low for commercial production, said Kim. The researchers then tried another way to raise production. They identified the rate-determining enzyme in the biosynthetic pathway. "We replaced the slower, naturally-occurring enzyme with a mutant version of that enzyme, which is faster," said Kim. The mutant enzyme has substantially increased production of (S)-equol. However, the process has yet to achieve sufficient productivity for industrial production, said Kim. "We showed a partial success, and we are working to improve it." More information: Pyung-Gang Lee et al. P212A mutant of dihydrodaidzein reductase enhances ( )-equol productivity and enantioselectivity in recombinant whole cell reaction system , Applied and Environmental Microbiology (2016). DOI: 10.1128/AEM.03584-15


News Article | April 15, 2016
Site: www.nanotech-now.com

Abstract: An international team of physicists has directly observed some unique characteristics of a superconductor for the first time, according to a paper published Wednesday in the journal Nature. Michael Lawler, a theoretical physicist at Binghamton University, contributed to the research, which he considers a great achievement for the experimentalists on the team. The researchers use a very small tool, bringing its tip close to a sample of material they want to examine. They then apply a voltage between them and try to drive a current. In this experiment, Lawler explained, they were able to change the tip by picking up a nano-sized "flake" of a material with a normal metallic tip so they could apply voltage from one superconductor to another. Superconductors are materials -- either "conventional" or "bad" metals at ambient temperatures -- that conduct electricity without resistance below a certain temperature. For decades, it was thought that these materials could conduct electricity only at temperatures far below freezing. Since the mid-1980s, however, scientists have discovered several compounds that superconduct at much higher temperatures. Lawler and his colleagues study a class of materials called cuprate superconductors, compounds including copper and oxygen that superconduct at relatively high temperatures (below 90-150 Kelvin). This particular experiment operated at about 50 millikelvin, which is about as cold as the research group can go, to reduce noise in the measured current. "This is a better and different way of looking at these cuprate materials than has previously been possible," says Lawler, who compared the new technique to the difference between looking at stars with a telescope and looking at the X-rays stars produce. Scanning tunneling microscopes (STM) with a superconducting tip allowed the group to observe the surface of these materials in a completely new way. "Before now, what we've known is that there are lots of waves present in these materials. You can think of the charge changing in a wavelike pattern, where the wave is 4 atoms across." In this experiment, the team was able to look at the superconductivity at the atomic scale for the first time. "They're observing that superconductivity can have waves in itself," Lawler says. "And that's the first time that's ever been observed." If you look at the amplitude of the wave, it's relatively modest. "It didn't surprise me, though people were hoping for something more dramatic," Lawler says. These experiments suggest that other materials -- "tuned" with different amounts of oxygen -- could produce different results, possibly more dramatic waves. In principle, a room-temperature superconductor could allow electricity to travel with zero energy loss from power plants to houses and make possible advanced high-speed trains and cell phone towers. Physicists are still working to understand the origin of high-temperature superconductivity. "I'm excited about seeing this wave that we can now probe directly," Lawler says. "We can find out if there are materials where this dramatic wave happens. They would be different kinds of superconductors than we typically study." ### In addition to Binghamton University, the team included scientists from Harvard University, Cornell University, University of St. Andrews, Seoul National University, the Institute of Basic Science in Seoul, the Institute of Advanced Industrial Science and Technology in Japan, the University of Tokyo, the Max Planck Institute for Chemical Physics of Solids and Brookhaven National Laboratory. For more information, please click If you have a comment, please us. Issuers of news releases, not 7th Wave, Inc. or Nanotechnology Now, are solely responsible for the accuracy of the content.


Home > Press > Detection of atomic scale structure of Cooper-pairs in a high-TC superconductor: Researchers from Seoul National University and the Center for Correlated Electron Systems within the Institute for Basic Science discover a Cooper-pair density wave at an atomic level Abstract: The international scientific team reported the first ever observation of the atomic scale structure of Cooper-pairs in the superconductor Bi2Sr2CaCu2O8+x: a material belonging to the family of high-temperature (High-TC) superconductors bismuth strontium calcium copper oxide, or BSCCO. This detection is a breakthrough in the understanding of the ever elusive high-TC superconductivity phenomena. Condensing fermions into one macroscopic quantum state Conventional superconductors are not a recent discovery; conversely, they have been in commercial use for a number of decades but the extreme temperatures required, less than -263oC, prove difficult to attain and maintain, as opposed to high-TC superconductors where more manageable temperatures of -196oC are required. Superconductivity occurs under certain temperatures: electrons form pairs and suddenly the electrical resistance drops to zero and the magnetic field inside of the material is repelled. In nature, there are examples of emergence of macroscopic quantum states - superfluidity, Bose-Einstein condensation for example- where bosonic particles (bosons) condense and form one macroscopic quantum entity. Electrons which are fermions--not bosons--cannot condense into one entity. However, under extremely low temperatures fermions cleverly combine into pairs and act as if they are bosons; they condense into one state and form yet another kind of macroscopic quantum phase - superconductivity. Overcoming severe difficulties The international scientific team had to overcome difficulties in creating an extreme environment. The process of detecting electrons is incredibly intricate, even when using advanced modern scientific machinery. Professor Jinho Lee, leader of the project, explains: "Even detecting electrons in atomic resolution using a scanning tunneling microscope (STM) requires extremely low temperatures, low vibrations and a vacuumed environment to prevent any decay in the tip of the microscope or the sample as well as to minimize any electrical noise. Detecting pairs is exponentially more difficult since the normal metal tip can only detect electrons and is unable to probe electron pairs. Naturally one needs to use a sharp, durable superconducting tip which is very challenging to make. Many researchers tried and failed. We solved this arduous problem by creating a superconducting tip in-situ using the same material as the sample. Cooper pairs can be detected due to the Josephson effect between the superconducting tip and sample. By using this Scanning Josephson Tunneling Microscopy, we were able to directly measure Cooper-pairs in atomic resolution for the first time." Tunneling through barriers and looking toward the future The Josephson effect is directly linked to superconductivity. Two superconducting materials, separated by a very thin barrier, can overlap their wave functions and Cooper pairs can tunnel through the barrier: This is known as the Josephson effect. Using the Scanning Josephson Tunneling Microscope, the team detected, at an atomic scale, the Cooper-pair tunneling through the barrier between the superconducting materials. The team's results, published in Nature, announced the world's first measurement of atomic scale structure of Cooper-pairs. The implications of this discovery might not reverberate for many years in commercial applications of superconductors, but there is no doubt that the team altered the future path of superconductor research. For more information, please click If you have a comment, please us. Issuers of news releases, not 7th Wave, Inc. or Nanotechnology Now, are solely responsible for the accuracy of the content.


Comparison of Cas9 'gene scissors' from different bacteria: Streptococcus pyogenes, Staphylococcus aureus and Campylobacter jejuni. The Cas9 protein derived from Campylobacter jejuni has only 984 aminoacids (aa) and it is the smallest one developed for gene editing so far. Credit: IBS Scientists at the Center for Genome Engineering, within the Institute for Basic Science (IBS), in collaboration with KIM Eunji (ToolGen Inc.) and KIM Jeong Hun (Seoul National University) have engineered the smallest CRISPR-Cas9 to date, delivered it to the muscle cells and in the eyes of mice via adeno-associated viruses (AAV) and used it to modify a gene causing blindness. Published on Nature Communications, this CRISPR-Cas9 system, originated from Campylobacter jejuni (CjCas9), is expected to become a useful therapeutic tool against common and "undruggable" disease targets. CRISPR-Cas9 is the buzzword amongst molecular biologists. It is an innovative, cheap and precise technique to edit genes. Cas9 is the "gene scissors" protein: It creates cuts on the target gene in precise locations indicated by the guide RNA. In order for CRISPR-Cas9 complex to reach the target DNA, it has to be delivered via plasmids or viruses. "AAV is an efficient and safe vector to express a gene of interest in vivo and has been used widely in gene therapy," explains KIM Jin-Soo, director of the IBS Center for Genome Engineering and corresponding author of the study. Naturally, Cas9 is used by several bacteria as an immunity weapon; it is needed to cut viral DNA which could damage the bacteria. The most common version of the CRISPR-Cas9 technique uses Cas9 derived from the bacterium Streptococcus pyogenes. However, this protein is made of 1,368 aminoacids and it is too large to be delivered and packaged in AAV. Even if scientists split it up into two parts, each packaged in a different virus, other issues arise: A double amount of viruses need to be delivered and the split Cas9 is less active than the intact SpCas9. Staphylococcus aureus Cas9 is also used for gene editing. It is slightly smaller (1,053 aminoacids), so that it can just fit inside the AAV, but does not leave enough space for other proteins. In this study, the team found that CjCas9 is both efficient and small. It has 984 aminoacids and it can be packed in AAV together with more than one guide RNAs as well as with a fluorescent reporter protein. In order to use a bacterial protein for gene editing, scientists had to optimize some aspects of the technique. They designed a short DNA sequence immediately following the DNA sequence targeted by the Cas9, called Protospacer Adjacent Motif (PAM). Each different Cas9 needs a specific PAM sequence, otherwise it will not be able to bind to and cleave the target DNA sequence. Secondly, they had to modify the length of the guide RNA. Afterwards, IBS scientists packaged the new CRISPR-Cas9 complex into AAV, together with two guide RNAs and a fluorescent reporter protein, to mutate genes in mice's muscles and eyes. They concentrated on two genes involved in the age-related macular degeneration (AMD), one of the leading causes of blindness in adults. One gene is a common therapeutic target for ADM, called Vascular endothelial growth factor A (VEGF A), the other one is a transcription factor that activates the transcripction of VEGF A and it is known as HIF-1a. Unlike VEGF A, HIF-1a has not been considered as a drug target. So-called'undruggable'genes, such as transcription factors in general, cannot be targeted directly by antibodies and other biological or chemical drugs. In this study, the research team proved that CjCas9 delivered to the retina via AAV can inactivate Hif1a and VEGF A in mice efficiently and reduced the area of choroidal neovascularization (CNV). Intraocular injections of AAV-packaged CRISPR-CjCas9 could be beneficial to treat various retinal diseases and systemic diseases. "CjCas9 is highly specific and does not cause off-target mutations in the genome," explains KIM Jin-Soo. Hif1a gene target sequences are the same in both mice and humans, thereby the method presented in this study could be used in the future for the treatment of ADM in human patients. By paving the way to the application of CjCas9 against 'undruggable' genes or non-coding sequences, this technology can broaden the range of therapeutic targets, making the entire human genome potentially druggable. Explore further: Genome surgery with CRISPR-Cas9 to prevent blindness More information: Eunji Kim et al, In vivo genome editing with a small Cas9 orthologue derived from Campylobacter jejuni, Nature Communications (2017). DOI: 10.1038/ncomms14500


News Article | November 10, 2016
Site: www.nature.com

Plant stems can act like fibre-optic cables, piping light from above ground down to the roots. Plants' roots produce proteins that respond to light, but it was not clear how light reached below the ground. Chung-Mo Park of Seoul National University, Ian Baldwin of the Max Planck Institute for Chemical Ecology in Jena, Germany, and their team investigated this in thale cress (Arabidopsis thaliana). They found that illuminating the plant shoot altered gene expression in the roots, even when they prevented light from shining through the soil. Light in the red to near-infrared range was efficiently conducted through stem and root tissues. Plants bearing a mutation in a light-responsive protein called HY5 showed abnormal root growth in response to shoot illumination, suggesting that light-sensing in plants is necessary for normal root development.


News Article | May 6, 2016
Site: www.techtimes.com

Correct drug dosage delivered through a "kidney on a chip" helps prevent kidney damage, a new research has found. The kidneys act like toxic collectors in the body as they process 120 to 150 quarts of blood to excrete toxins out of the body. Part of what is filtrated includes medications, and when it gets bombarded with several drugs over a period of time, the kidneys become stressed and undergo failure. One study has even found long-term use of proton pump inhibitors can cause kidney failure and other kidney related diseases. Now, researchers from University of Michigan were able to develop a kidney on a chip that imitates how human kidneys process medications while measuring their effects on kidney cells. Accurate dosing is necessary, particularly in patients confined in the intensive care unit because their kidneys are compromised already, but to achieve it can be challenging. Most of medication dosing is based on animal studies that measure drug toxicity and safe dosages. Animals, however, process these medications more rapidly than humans and this often leads to underestimation of drug toxicity. With the newly developed technique, researchers said, will help identify safe dosages in humans because the device can closely mimic the environment of a human kidney. Researchers said that what they developed is the first of its kind to study the pharmacokinetic profile of a drug in the body. Professor of Biomedical Engineering at University of Michigan Shuichi Takayama said once drug is administered, it undergoes rapid concentration uptake before gradually filtered out in the kidneys. This process, Takayama said, was mimicked by the kidney on a chip. For their study, researchers used a microfluid chip device to deliver accurate flow of drugs to cultured kidney cells, where they were able to replicate the different functions of kidneys. The researchers placed cultured kidney cells and a permeable polyester membrane in between the microfluidic device's top and bottom compartments. Gentamicin was pumped on the top compartment where it was noted to mimic the gradual flow of drugs in the human cells and membranes. The researchers compared two different gentamicin regimens:  a once-daily dose with high initial concentration and rapid reductions and a slow infusion therapy where drugs are given in constant low doses over a period of time. Seoul National University Bundang Hospital associate professor and former University of Michigan researcher Sejoong Kim said they were able to observe that the manner of drug administration produces different effects on the body regardless of whether or not it is the same dosage of the same drug. They found that giving daily doses are less likely to harm the kidneys than the slow and continuous infusion, even if they have the same dosage. Takayama hopes that future studies would develop their techniques to cover more organs and different types of medications. This way, drug dosing can be fine-tuned depending on what patients should only have in their body. "We were able to get results that better relate to human physiology, at least in terms of dosing, than what's currently possible to obtain from common animal tests," said Takayama. "The goal for the future is to improve these devices to the point where we're able to see exactly how a medication affects the body from moment to moment, in real time. © 2017 Tech Times, All rights reserved. Do not reproduce without permission.


News Article | January 27, 2016
Site: www.sciencenews.org

Fitness trackers just got an upgrade. A new electronic health-monitoring device can sense a person’s temperature, analyze chemicals in a drop of sweat, and send the data wirelessly to a smartphone app — all in a package about the size of a few postage stamps. The gadget could help athletes instantly gauge their hydration level, or give scientists an easy and noninvasive way to collect data for medical studies. Researchers have built sweat sensors before, but the new device “just represents a whole nother level of sophistication,” says materials scientist John Rogers of the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. Previous sensors have detected only a single chemical. The new sensor can measure four chemicals — glucose, lactate, sodium and potassium — simultaneously ­and in real time, Ali Javey and colleagues report January 27 in Nature. Traditional electronics rely on “brains” made of tiny circuits laid out on silicon chips. “But the problem with silicon chips is that they’re way too small and rigid,” says Javey, an electrical engineer at University of California, Berkeley.They’re great for data processing — not for making sensors that hug the skin. For that, rubbery electronics that can twist and flex are ideal (SN: 11/17/12, p. 18). But they don’t have the processing power of silicon-based versions. By analyzing sodium concentrations in sweat, a new wearable electronic device can pick up signs of dehydration in a runner who hasn’t been drinking water (red line) versus one who stayed hydrated (black line). So scientists typically use flexible electronics for sensing and let traditional electronics do the “thinking,” and connect the two via long wires, says Dae-Hyeong Kim, a bioengineer at Seoul National University in South Korea. Javey’s team merged the two technologies together into a single, wireless device. “This level of integration is amazing,” Kim says. The researchers tested their sweat-sensing device on volunteers in and out of the lab. In one test, 12 volunteers wore the device tucked into a headband while running outdoors. Six runners drank water every five minutes; the other six didn’t drink at all. After about an hour and a half, the sweat sensor picked up a sign of dehydration in the nondrinkers: an uptick in sodium levels. Javey says tweaking the device could make it useful beyond athletics: Researchers could one day use it to diagnose lead poisoning in children without drawing blood, or perhaps even to detect molecules in sweat that are linked to depression.


News Article | October 31, 2016
Site: www.sciencedaily.com

Convertible video displays that offer both 2D and 3D imaging without the need of any eyewear offer greater convenience to users who would otherwise have to keep track of yet another accessory. Such autostereoscopic displays have already hit the TV market, but the underlying technology reveals its limitations at close viewing distances. Viewers typically must view these displays from a distance of around one meter (about three feet), eliminating any practical applicability to the smaller screens of mobile devices. Researchers at Seoul National University, South Korea, however, have developed a new method of making these convertible displays that not only achieved near-viewing capabilities, but also simplified and shrank the architecture of the technology. In a paper published this week in the journal Optics Express, from The Optical Society (OSA), the researchers describe their novel design. For eyewear-free displays, the only action is behind the screen where the images' pixels and optics are layered together to produce the stereoscopic effect. The two primary ways of producing these optically illusive effects are by using either an array of micro-lenses, called lenticular lenses, or an array of micro-filters, called parallax barriers, in front of the image to make its appearance depend on the angle at which it is being seen. The simplest example of this effect is found on a movie poster whose image appears to change as you walk by. Two (or more) images are interlaced and printed behind a plastic layer with grooves matching the interlaced pattern. The grooves act as distinct, interlaced arrays of lenses or filters, revealing one image as you approach the poster and another as you depart, viewing the same poster from a different angle. In the case of 2D/3D convertible screens, these layers are active, meaning they can be (electronically) switched on or off. The gap distance between the image layer and the barrier layer is a key determinant of the viewing distance. Closer stacking of these layers together allows for a closer viewing distance. In their paper, Sin-Doo Lee, a professor of electrical engineering at Seoul National University, and his colleagues describe a monolithic structure that effectively combines the active parallax barrier, a polarizing sheet and an image layer into a single panel. Instead of two separate image and barrier panels, they use a polarizing interlayer with the image layer in direct contact with one side of the interlayer, while the active parallax barrier of a liquid crystal layer is formed on the other side as an array of periodically patterned indium-tin-oxide (ITO) electrodes. The use of this interlayer allows the minimum separation of the image and barrier layers, thus providing the short viewing distance required for the smaller screens of mobile devices. "The polarizing interlayer approach here will allow high resolution together with design flexibility of the displays, and will be applicable for fabricating other types of displays such as viewing-angle switchable devices," Lee said. "Our technology will definitely benefit display companies in manufacturing low cost and light weight 2D/3D convertible displays for mobile applications. Under mobile environments, the weight is one of the important factors." This concept not only applies to LC-based 2D/3D displays, but also to OLED-based 2D/3D displays, offering application to a broad range of present and future device designs.


News Article | February 16, 2017
Site: www.eurekalert.org

It is estimated that almost one in every ten people over 65 has some signs of age-related macular degeneration (AMD), and its prevalence is likely to increase as a consequence of the aging population. AMD is a form of blindness, common in Caucasians, which causes distorted vision and blind spots. Scientists at the Center for Genome Engineering, within the Institute for Basic Science (IBS) report the use of CRISPR-Cas9 in performing "gene surgery" in the layer of tissue that supports the retina of living mice. Published in Genome Research, this study combines basic research and mouse model applications. The most common retinopathies causing blindness are 'retinopathy of prematurity' in children, 'diabetic retinopathy' and 'AMD' in older adults. In these diseases, abnormally high levels of the Vascular Endothelial Growth Factor (VEGF) are secreted. In AMD, VEGF causes the formation of new blood vessels in the eyes but also leads to leakages of blood and fluid into the eye, damaging an area at the center of the retina called macula. Injections of anti-VEGF drugs are the most common treatment against AMD, but at least seven injections per year are required, because VEGF is continuously overexpressed by the cells of the diseased retinal pigment epithelium. Instead of such invasive treatments, IBS scientists believe that gene therapy with the third generation gene editing tool CRISPR-Cas9 could improve the situation. "The injections tackle the effects, but not the main cause of the problem. By editing the VEGF gene, we can achieve a longer-term cure," explains KIM Jin-Soo, Director of the Center for Genome Engineering. CRISPR-Cas9 can precisely cut and correct DNA at the desired site in the genome. The CRISPR-Cas9 system works by cutting DNA at a target site, in this case, inside the VEGF gene. Two year ago, IBS scientists proved that a pre-assembled version of CRISPR-Cas9, a.k.a, Cas9 ribonucleoprotein (RNP), can be delivered to cells and stem cells to modify target genes. The pre-assembled complex works rapidly and degrades before the body has time to build up an immune response against it. Despite these advantages and previous successes, the difficulty in delivering pre-assembled CRISPR-Cas9 has limited its use in therapeutic applications. In this study, the research team successfully injected CRISPR-Cas9 into the eyes of a mice model with wet AMD and locally modified the VEGF gene. Initially they found that the delivery of the pre-assembled CRISPR-Cas9 complex is more efficient that the delivery of the same components in a plasmid form. Secondly, the complex disappeared after just 72 hours. Scientists assessed the whole genome of the animals and found the CRISPR-Cas9 complex modified only the VEGF gene and did not affect other genes. The progression of the eye disease was monitored by looking at choroidal neovascularization (CNV), the creation of new blood vessels between the retina and the sclera - a common problem of 'wet' macular degeneration - and researchers found the CNV area reduced by 58%. Moreover, a likely side effect, namely cone dysfunction, that takes only 3 days to show in these mice, did not occur a week after the treatment. "We have developed a treatment to suppress CNV by inactivating the VEGF gene, one of the causes of AMD. We envision that, in the future, surgeons will be able to cut and paste disease-causing genetic elements in patients," explains Kim Jin-Soo. While CRISPR-Cas9 is conventionally used to correct mutations causing hereditary diseases or cancer, this study suggests a new therapy for non-hereditary degenerative disease."We believe that this is a new therapeutic modality for the treatment of non-hereditary degenerative diseases," points out Professor KIM Jeong Hun (Seoul National University), "We confirmed the effect on the animal models of the disease and now we wish to continue with preclinical trials."


News Article | November 3, 2016
Site: www.sciencedaily.com

Light is not only a source of energy, but also an important signal which regulates many light-dependent growth processes in a plant in order to adapt it to its environment in the best possible way. Light is first detected by photoreceptors in the shoot of a plant. Physiological processes in the plant are mediated by light signaling molecules. For more than three decades, scientists have been speculating whether roots are also able to perceive light. However, this hypothesis could never be proved until this new study was published. "Physicists from Korea and biologists from Jena teamed and combined knowledge from both disciplines in order to find out, whether plant vascular bundles could act as light optical fibers and transmit light from the shoot to the roots," Sang-Gyu Kim, one of the first authors of the study and co-initiator of the project, describes the successful cooperation. Previous studies had shown that a special photoreceptor in plants which detects light of the wavelength red/far-red is surprisingly also expressed in the roots. However, it remained unclear how this root photoreceptor was activated. In an interdisciplinary effort, molecular biologists and optical physicists developed a highly sensitive optical detector along with the idea to compare plants with "blind" and "sighted" roots. They used plants of the thale cress Arabidopsis thaliana, a model organism in plant research, which were genetically modified in a way that the photoreceptor was only silenced in their roots, but not in their shoots. Hence, these plants had "blind" roots. The scientists grew these modified plants along with control plants; their roots were in the dark soil and their shoots exposed to light, just like in nature. The optical detector system was used to measure light which was transmitted in the stem down to the roots. "With this approach, we could show clearly and without ambiguity that light is transmitted into the roots via vascular bundles. Even if the intensity of the transmitted light was low, it was sufficient to activate the photoreceptors, trigger downstream light signaling, and influence growth in the control plants," Chung-Mo Park, the leader of the project at Seoul National University, explains. "These results are crucial for further research projects. Our work proves that roots are able to perceive light, even though they are usually found belowground. Photoreception in the roots triggers a signaling chain which influences plant growth, especially the root architecture," says Ian Baldwin, leader of the study at the Max Planck Institute for Chemical Ecology in Jena. He already looks into the future: "There are more photoreceptors in the roots. Until now, it has remained largely unknown what their responsibilities in the roots are and how they interact with light signals which are transmitted from the shoots." It is of major importance for ecological research to show the relevance of this study for plants growing in their natural habitat. To find out, the scientists want to perform experiments with another plant species, the coyote tobacco Nicotiana attenuata, a model plant in ecology, which is adapted to an extremely strong exposition to light. The researchers propose that the newly found sensory modality of roots is enhancing the ecological performance of plants in nature, by allowing for a better timing of resource allocations for growth, reproduction and defense.


News Article | November 3, 2016
Site: www.rdmag.com

Light is not only a source of energy, but also an important signal which regulates many light-dependent growth processes in a plant in order to adapt it to its environment in the best possible way. Light is first detected by photoreceptors in the shoot of a plant. Physiological processes in the plant are mediated by light signaling molecules. For more than three decades, scientists have been speculating whether roots are also able to perceive light. However, this hypothesis could never be proved until this new study was published. "Physicists from Korea and biologists from Jena teamed and combined knowledge from both disciplines in order to find out, whether plant vascular bundles could act as light optical fibers and transmit light from the shoot to the roots," Sang-Gyu Kim, one of the first authors of the study and co-initiator of the project, describes the successful cooperation. Previous studies had shown that a special photoreceptor in plants which detects light of the wavelength red/far-red is surprisingly also expressed in the roots. However, it remained unclear how this root photoreceptor was activated. In an interdisciplinary effort, molecular biologists and optical physicists developed a highly sensitive optical detector along with the idea to compare plants with "blind" and "sighted" roots. They used plants of the thale cress Arabidopsis thaliana, a model organism in plant research, which were genetically modified in a way that the photoreceptor was only silenced in their roots, but not in their shoots. Hence, these plants had "blind" roots. The scientists grew these modified plants along with control plants; their roots were in the dark soil and their shoots exposed to light, just like in nature. The optical detector system was used to measure light which was transmitted in the stem down to the roots. "With this approach, we could show clearly and without ambiguity that light is transmitted into the roots via vascular bundles. Even if the intensity of the transmitted light was low, it was sufficient to activate the photoreceptors, trigger downstream light signaling, and influence growth in the control plants," Chung-Mo Park, the leader of the project at Seoul National University, explains. "These results are crucial for further research projects. Our work proves that roots are able to perceive light, even though they are usually found belowground. Photoreception in the roots triggers a signaling chain which influences plant growth, especially the root architecture," says Ian Baldwin, leader of the study at the Max Planck Institute for Chemical Ecology in Jena. He already looks into the future: "There are more photoreceptors in the roots. Until now, it has remained largely unknown what their responsibilities in the roots are and how they interact with light signals which are transmitted from the shoots." It is of major importance for ecological research to show the relevance of this study for plants growing in their natural habitat. To find out, the scientists want to perform experiments with another plant species, the coyote tobacco Nicotiana attenuata, a model plant in ecology, which is adapted to an extremely strong exposition to light. The researchers propose that the newly found sensory modality of roots is enhancing the ecological performance of plants in nature, by allowing for a better timing of resource allocations for growth, reproduction and defense. [KG/AO]


News Article | February 17, 2017
Site: www.rdmag.com

It is estimated that almost one in every ten people over 65 has some signs of age-related macular degeneration (AMD), and its prevalence is likely to increase as a consequence of the aging population. AMD is a form of blindness, common in Caucasians, which causes distorted vision and blind spots. Scientists at the Center for Genome Engineering, within the Institute for Basic Science (IBS) report the use of CRISPR-Cas9 in performing "gene surgery" in the layer of tissue that supports the retina of living mice. Published in Genome Research, this study combines basic research and mouse model applications. The most common retinopathies causing blindness are 'retinopathy of prematurity' in children, 'diabetic retinopathy' and 'AMD' in older adults. In these diseases, abnormally high levels of the Vascular Endothelial Growth Factor (VEGF) are secreted. In AMD, VEGF causes the formation of new blood vessels in the eyes but also leads to leakages of blood and fluid into the eye, damaging an area at the center of the retina called macula. Injections of anti-VEGF drugs are the most common treatment against AMD, but at least seven injections per year are required, because VEGF is continuously overexpressed by the cells of the diseased retinal pigment epithelium. Instead of such invasive treatments, IBS scientists believe that gene therapy with the third generation gene editing tool CRISPR-Cas9 could improve the situation. "The injections tackle the effects, but not the main cause of the problem. By editing the VEGF gene, we can achieve a longer-term cure," explains KIM Jin-Soo, Director of the Center for Genome Engineering. CRISPR-Cas9 can precisely cut and correct DNA at the desired site in the genome. The CRISPR-Cas9 system works by cutting DNA at a target site, in this case, inside the VEGF gene. Two year ago, IBS scientists proved that a pre-assembled version of CRISPR-Cas9, a.k.a, Cas9 ribonucleoprotein (RNP), can be delivered to cells and stem cells to modify target genes. The pre-assembled complex works rapidly and degrades before the body has time to build up an immune response against it. Despite these advantages and previous successes, the difficulty in delivering pre-assembled CRISPR-Cas9 has limited its use in therapeutic applications. In this study, the research team successfully injected CRISPR-Cas9 into the eyes of a mice model with wet AMD and locally modified the VEGF gene. Initially they found that the delivery of the pre-assembled CRISPR-Cas9 complex is more efficient that the delivery of the same components in a plasmid form. Secondly, the complex disappeared after just 72 hours. Scientists assessed the whole genome of the animals and found the CRISPR-Cas9 complex modified only the VEGF gene and did not affect other genes. The progression of the eye disease was monitored by looking at choroidal neovascularization (CNV), the creation of new blood vessels between the retina and the sclera - a common problem of 'wet' macular degeneration - and researchers found the CNV area reduced by 58%. Moreover, a likely side effect, namely cone dysfunction, that takes only 3 days to show in these mice, did not occur a week after the treatment. "We have developed a treatment to suppress CNV by inactivating the VEGF gene, one of the causes of AMD. We envision that, in the future, surgeons will be able to cut and paste disease-causing genetic elements in patients," explains Kim Jin-Soo. While CRISPR-Cas9 is conventionally used to correct mutations causing hereditary diseases or cancer, this study suggests a new therapy for non-hereditary degenerative disease."We believe that this is a new therapeutic modality for the treatment of non-hereditary degenerative diseases," points out Professor KIM Jeong Hun (Seoul National University), "We confirmed the effect on the animal models of the disease and now we wish to continue with preclinical trials."


News Article | October 31, 2016
Site: phys.org

Convertible video displays that offer both 2D and 3D imaging without the need of any eyewear offer greater convenience to users who would otherwise have to keep track of yet another accessory. Such autostereoscopic displays have already hit the TV market, but the underlying technology reveals its limitations at close viewing distances. Viewers typically must view these displays from a distance of around one meter (about three feet), eliminating any practical applicability to the smaller screens of mobile devices. Researchers at Seoul National University, South Korea, however, have developed a new method of making these convertible displays that not only achieved near-viewing capabilities, but also simplified and shrank the architecture of the technology. In a paper published this week in the journal Optics Express, from The Optical Society (OSA), the researchers describe their novel design. For eyewear-free displays, the only action is behind the screen where the images' pixels and optics are layered together to produce the stereoscopic effect. The two primary ways of producing these optically illusive effects are by using either an array of micro-lenses, called lenticular lenses, or an array of micro-filters, called parallax barriers, in front of the image to make its appearance depend on the angle at which it is being seen. The simplest example of this effect is found on a movie poster whose image appears to change as you walk by. Two (or more) images are interlaced and printed behind a plastic layer with grooves matching the interlaced pattern. The grooves act as distinct, interlaced arrays of lenses or filters, revealing one image as you approach the poster and another as you depart, viewing the same poster from a different angle. In the case of 2D/3D convertible screens, these layers are active, meaning they can be (electronically) switched on or off. The gap distance between the image layer and the barrier layer is a key determinant of the viewing distance. Closer stacking of these layers together allows for a closer viewing distance. In their paper, Sin-Doo Lee, a professor of electrical engineering at Seoul National University, and his colleagues describe a monolithic structure that effectively combines the active parallax barrier, a polarizing sheet and an image layer into a single panel. Instead of two separate image and barrier panels, they use a polarizing interlayer with the image layer in direct contact with one side of the interlayer, while the active parallax barrier of a liquid crystal layer is formed on the other side as an array of periodically patterned indium-tin-oxide (ITO) electrodes. The use of this interlayer allows the minimum separation of the image and barrier layers, thus providing the short viewing distance required for the smaller screens of mobile devices. "The polarizing interlayer approach here will allow high resolution together with design flexibility of the displays, and will be applicable for fabricating other types of displays such as viewing-angle switchable devices," Lee said. "Our technology will definitely benefit display companies in manufacturing low cost and light weight 2D/3D convertible displays for mobile applications. Under mobile environments, the weight is one of the important factors." This concept not only applies to LC-based 2D/3D displays, but also to OLED-based 2D/3D displays, offering application to a broad range of present and future device designs. More information: Se-Um Kim et al, Concept of active parallax barrier on polarizing interlayer for near-viewing autostereoscopic displays, Optics Express (2016). DOI: 10.1364/OE.24.025010


News Article | October 31, 2016
Site: www.eurekalert.org

WASHINGTON -- Convertible video displays that offer both 2D and 3D imaging without the need of any eyewear offer greater convenience to users who would otherwise have to keep track of yet another accessory. Such autostereoscopic displays have already hit the TV market, but the underlying technology reveals its limitations at close viewing distances. Viewers typically must view these displays from a distance of around one meter (about three feet), eliminating any practical applicability to the smaller screens of mobile devices. Researchers at Seoul National University, South Korea, however, have developed a new method of making these convertible displays that not only achieved near-viewing capabilities, but also simplified and shrank the architecture of the technology. In a paper published this week in the journal Optics Express, from The Optical Society (OSA), the researchers describe their novel design. For eyewear-free displays, the only action is behind the screen where the images' pixels and optics are layered together to produce the stereoscopic effect. The two primary ways of producing these optically illusive effects are by using either an array of micro-lenses, called lenticular lenses, or an array of micro-filters, called parallax barriers, in front of the image to make its appearance depend on the angle at which it is being seen. The simplest example of this effect is found on a movie poster whose image appears to change as you walk by. Two (or more) images are interlaced and printed behind a plastic layer with grooves matching the interlaced pattern. The grooves act as distinct, interlaced arrays of lenses or filters, revealing one image as you approach the poster and another as you depart, viewing the same poster from a different angle. In the case of 2D/3D convertible screens, these layers are active, meaning they can be (electronically) switched on or off. The gap distance between the image layer and the barrier layer is a key determinant of the viewing distance. Closer stacking of these layers together allows for a closer viewing distance. In their paper, Sin-Doo Lee, a professor of electrical engineering at Seoul National University, and his colleagues describe a monolithic structure that effectively combines the active parallax barrier, a polarizing sheet and an image layer into a single panel. Instead of two separate image and barrier panels, they use a polarizing interlayer with the image layer in direct contact with one side of the interlayer, while the active parallax barrier of a liquid crystal layer is formed on the other side as an array of periodically patterned indium-tin-oxide (ITO) electrodes. The use of this interlayer allows the minimum separation of the image and barrier layers, thus providing the short viewing distance required for the smaller screens of mobile devices. "The polarizing interlayer approach here will allow high resolution together with design flexibility of the displays, and will be applicable for fabricating other types of displays such as viewing-angle switchable devices," Lee said. "Our technology will definitely benefit display companies in manufacturing low cost and light weight 2D/3D convertible displays for mobile applications. Under mobile environments, the weight is one of the important factors." This concept not only applies to LC-based 2D/3D displays, but also to OLED-based 2D/3D displays, offering application to a broad range of present and future device designs. Paper: Se-Um Kim, Jiyoon Kim, Jeng-Hun Suh, Jun-Hee Na, and Sin-Doo Lee, "Concept of active parallax barrier on polarizing interlayer for near-viewing autostereoscopic displays," Opt. Express 24, 25010-25018 (2016). DOI: 10.1364/OE.24.025010. Optics Express reports on new developments in all fields of optical science and technology every two weeks. The journal provides rapid publication of original, peer-reviewed papers. It is published by The Optical Society and edited by Andrew M. Weiner of Purdue University. Optics Express is an open-access journal and is available at no cost to readers online at: OSA Publishing. Founded in 1916, The Optical Society (OSA) is the leading professional organization for scientists, engineers, students and entrepreneurs who fuel discoveries, shape real-life applications and accelerate achievements in the science of light. Through world-renowned publications, meetings and membership initiatives, OSA provides quality research, inspired interactions and dedicated resources for its extensive global network of optics and photonics experts. For more information, visit osa.org/100.


News Article | November 3, 2016
Site: www.eurekalert.org

Light is not only a source of energy, but also an important signal which regulates many light-dependent growth processes in a plant in order to adapt it to its environment in the best possible way. Light is first detected by photoreceptors in the shoot of a plant. Physiological processes in the plant are mediated by light signaling molecules. For more than three decades, scientists have been speculating whether roots are also able to perceive light. However, this hypothesis could never be proved until this new study was published. "Physicists from Korea and biologists from Jena teamed and combined knowledge from both disciplines in order to find out, whether plant vascular bundles could act as light optical fibers and transmit light from the shoot to the roots," Sang-Gyu Kim, one of the first authors of the study and co-initiator of the project, describes the successful cooperation. Previous studies had shown that a special photoreceptor in plants which detects light of the wavelength red/far-red is surprisingly also expressed in the roots. However, it remained unclear how this root photoreceptor was activated. In an interdisciplinary effort, molecular biologists and optical physicists developed a highly sensitive optical detector along with the idea to compare plants with "blind" and "sighted" roots. They used plants of the thale cress Arabidopsis thaliana, a model organism in plant research, which were genetically modified in a way that the photoreceptor was only silenced in their roots, but not in their shoots. Hence, these plants had "blind" roots. The scientists grew these modified plants along with control plants; their roots were in the dark soil and their shoots exposed to light, just like in nature. The optical detector system was used to measure light which was transmitted in the stem down to the roots. "With this approach, we could show clearly and without ambiguity that light is transmitted into the roots via vascular bundles. Even if the intensity of the transmitted light was low, it was sufficient to activate the photoreceptors, trigger downstream light signaling, and influence growth in the control plants," Chung-Mo Park, the leader of the project at Seoul National University, explains. "These results are crucial for further research projects. Our work proves that roots are able to perceive light, even though they are usually found belowground. Photoreception in the roots triggers a signaling chain which influences plant growth, especially the root architecture," says Ian Baldwin, leader of the study at the Max Planck Institute for Chemical Ecology in Jena. He already looks into the future: "There are more photoreceptors in the roots. Until now, it has remained largely unknown what their responsibilities in the roots are and how they interact with light signals which are transmitted from the shoots." It is of major importance for ecological research to show the relevance of this study for plants growing in their natural habitat. To find out, the scientists want to perform experiments with another plant species, the coyote tobacco Nicotiana attenuata, a model plant in ecology, which is adapted to an extremely strong exposition to light. The researchers propose that the newly found sensory modality of roots is enhancing the ecological performance of plants in nature, by allowing for a better timing of resource allocations for growth, reproduction and defense. [KG/AO] Lee, H.-J., Ha, J.-H., Kim, S.-G., Choi, H.-K., Kim, Z. H., Han, Y.-J., Kim, J.-I., Oh, Y., Fragoso, V., Shin, K., Hyeon, T., Choi, H.-G., Oh, K.-H., Baldwin, I. T., Park, C.-M. (2016). Stem-piped light activates phytochrome B to trigger light responses in Arabidopsis thaliana roots. Science Signaling. Vol. 9, Issue 452, pp. ra106 http://dx.


News Article | January 11, 2016
Site: phys.org

Time series of selected images of 17P/Holmes taken with an RC filter. All images have the standard orientation, that is, north is up and east to the left. At the bottom right in each image, solid vectors denote the orientation of the negative velocity of the comet, and dashed vectors show radial vectors outward from the solar direction. Credit: Yuna Grace Kwon et al., 2014. (Phys.org)—Periodic comet 17P/Holmes is usually a very faint object. However, during its historic outburst in October 2007, when the comet's coma expanded to a diameter greater than that of the sun, it became visible to the naked eye and was temporarily the largest object in our solar system. This event has drawn the attention of astronomers worldwide trying to investigate the comet's uncertain and changing nature. 17P/Holmes has been intensively monitored during its perihelion passage in 2014 and the results of these observations were detailed in a paper published Dec. 29, 2014 on the arXiv pre-print server. 17P/Holmes is a Jupiter-family comet discovered by Edwin Holmes in 1892. Although the comet's massive outburst event in 2007 was well-observed, very little is known about the long-term evolution in the activity of 17P/Holmes. The perihelion passage seven years later was expected to be a great occasion to study the comet in detail. Unfortunately, in March 2014, it passed its perihelion so far that there have been no published reports about the physical state of the comet during this passage. Now, a research team led by Yuna Grace Kwon of the Seoul National University in South Korea, reports its photometric monitoring observations of the comet over a period of nearly two years from May 2013 to March 2015, including the 2014 perihelion passage. To monitor the comet's activity, six ground-based telescopes were employed at five observatories: the Ishigakijima Astronomical Observatory (IAO), the Okayama Astrophysical Observatory (OAO), the Nishi-Harima Astronomical Observatory (NHAO), the Siding Spring Observatory (SSO), and the Bohyunsan Optical Astronomy Observatory (BOAO). Thanks to these observations, the researchers were able to detect the comet's circumnuclear dust coma and its feeble dust tail. They found out that the dust mass loss rate of 17P/Holmes' inner dust coma has been declining with increasing heliocentric distance. They also noticed that the dust production rate became equivalent to the level before the 2007 outburst. "The dust production rates around the 2014 perihelion passage were about five orders of magnitudes lower than the maximum value during the 2007 outburst, while they were comparable to that of the pre-outburst data," the researchers wrote in the paper. According to research team, this similarity suggests that the comet's activity was restored to its former state, although it has shown lingering activity for years when it was around its aphelion. They noted that the mass loss process yields valuable information for monitoring the activity of the 17P/Holmes. Besides determining dust production rates, the scientists also calculated the diurnal skin depth and growth timescale of the comet's dust mantle, inferring that it is now nearly five to seven centimeters thick and has been developing apace over the last seven years. "17P/Holmes spends more than half a revolution period beyond the heliocentric distance of three astronomical units. Taking into account the persistent activities of the comet around its aphelion it should have had favorable conditions in developing the dust mantle with continuously outward sublimating volatiles over quite large portions of its orbit," the paper reads. The researchers assume that the activity of 17P/Holmes is highly controlled by the formation and evolution of dust mantle. By monitoring the evolution of the fractional active area over the cometary surface, they concluded that the overall activity of 17P/Holmes has been significantly restrained during the 2014–2015 outbound orbits. The new results might also indicate that inactive or dormant comets are aided by the development of their dust mantles acquired over their evolutionary histories in the inner part of our solar system. Explore further: Mini-Comets within a comet lit up 17P/Holmes during megaoutburst More information: Monitoring Observations of the Jupiter-Family Comet 17P/Holmes during 2014 Perihelion Passage, arXiv:1512.08797 [astro-ph.EP] arxiv.org/abs/1512.08797 Abstract We performed a monitoring observation of a Jupiter-Family comet, 17P/Holmes, during its 2014 perihelion passage to investigate its secular change in activity. The comet has drawn the attention of astronomers since its historic outburst in 2007, and this occasion was its first perihelion passage since then. We analyzed the obtained data using aperture photometry package and derived the Afrho parameter, a proxy for the dust production rate. We found that Afrho showed asymmetric properties with respect to the perihelion passage: it increased moderately from 100 cm at the heliocentric distance r_h=2.6-3.1 AU to a maximal value of 185 cm at r_h = 2.2 AU (near the perihelion) during the inbound orbit, while dropping rapidly to 35 cm at r_h = 3.2 AU during the outbound orbit. We applied a model for characterizing dust production rates as a function of r_h and found that the fractional active area of the cometary nucleus had dropped from 20%-40% in 2008-2011 (around the aphelion) to 0.1%-0.3% in 2014-2015 (around the perihelion). This result suggests that a dust mantle would have developed rapidly in only one orbital revolution around the sun. Although a minor eruption was observed on UT 2015 January 26 at r_h = 3.0 AU, the areas excavated by the 2007 outburst would be covered with a layer of dust (


News Article | February 21, 2017
Site: www.eurekalert.org

Scientists at the Center for Genome Engineering, within the Institute for Basic Science (IBS), in collaboration with KIM Eunji (ToolGen Inc.) and KIM Jeong Hun (Seoul National University) have engineered the smallest CRISPR-Cas9 to date, delivered it to the muscle cells and in the eyes of mice via adeno-associated viruses (AAV) and used it to modify a gene causing blindness. Published on Nature Communications, this CRISPR-Cas9 system, originated from Campylobacter jejuni (CjCas9), is expected to become a useful therapeutic tool against common and "undruggable" disease targets. CRISPR-Cas9 is the buzzword amongst molecular biologists. It is an innovative, cheap and precise technique to edit genes. Cas9 is the "gene scissors" protein: It creates cuts on the target gene in precise locations indicated by the guide RNA. In order for CRISPR-Cas9 complex to reach the target DNA, it has to be delivered via plasmids or viruses. "AAV is an efficient and safe vector to express a gene of interest in vivo and has been used widely in gene therapy," explains KIM Jin-Soo, director of the IBS Center for Genome Engineering and corresponding author of the study. Naturally, Cas9 is used by several bacteria as an immunity weapon; it is needed to cut viral DNA which could damage the bacteria. The most common version of the CRISPR-Cas9 technique uses Cas9 derived from the bacterium Streptococcus pyogenes. However, this protein is made of 1,368 aminoacids and it is too large to be delivered and packaged in AAV. Even if scientists split it up into two parts, each packaged in a different virus, other issues arise: A double amount of viruses need to be delivered and the split Cas9 is less active than the intact SpCas9. Staphylococcus aureus Cas9 is also used for gene editing. It is slightly smaller (1,053 aminoacids), so that it can just fit inside the AAV, but does not leave enough space for other proteins. In this study, the team found that CjCas9 is both efficient and small. It has 984 aminoacids and it can be packed in AAV together with more than one guide RNAs as well as with a fluorescent reporter protein. In order to use a bacterial protein for gene editing, scientists had to optimize some aspects of the technique. They designed a short DNA sequence immediately following the DNA sequence targeted by the Cas9, called Protospacer Adjacent Motif (PAM). Each different Cas9 needs a specific PAM sequence, otherwise it will not be able to bind to and cleave the target DNA sequence. Secondly, they had to modify the length of the guide RNA. Afterwards, IBS scientists packaged the new CRISPR-Cas9 complex into AAV, together with two guide RNAs and a fluorescent reporter protein, to mutate genes in mice's muscles and eyes. They concentrated on two genes involved in the age-related macular degeneration (AMD), one of the leading causes of blindness in adults. One gene is a common therapeutic target for ADM, called Vascular endothelial growth factor A (VEGF A), the other one is a transcription factor that activates the transcripction of VEGF A and it is known as HIF-1a. Unlike VEGF A, HIF-1a has not been considered as a drug target. So-called'undruggable'genes, such as transcription factors in general, cannot be targeted directly by antibodies and other biological or chemical drugs. In this study, the research team proved that CjCas9 delivered to the retina via AAV can inactivate Hif1a and VEGF A in mice efficiently and reduced the area of choroidal neovascularization (CNV). Intraocular injections of AAV-packaged CRISPR-CjCas9 could be beneficial to treat various retinal diseases and systemic diseases. "CjCas9 is highly specific and does not cause off-target mutations in the genome," explains KIM Jin-Soo. Hif1a gene target sequences are the same in both mice and humans, thereby the method presented in this study could be used in the future for the treatment of ADM in human patients. By paving the way to the application of CjCas9 against 'undruggable' genes or non-coding sequences, this technology can broaden the range of therapeutic targets, making the entire human genome potentially druggable.


News Article | November 3, 2016
Site: phys.org

Light is not only a source of energy, but also an important signal which regulates many light-dependent growth processes in a plant in order to adapt it to its environment in the best possible way. Light is first detected by photoreceptors in the shoot of a plant. Physiological processes in the plant are mediated by light signaling molecules. For more than three decades, scientists have been speculating whether roots are also able to perceive light. However, this hypothesis could never be proved until this new study was published. "Physicists from Korea and biologists from Jena teamed and combined knowledge from both disciplines in order to find out, whether plant vascular bundles could act as light optical fibers and transmit light from the shoot to the roots," Sang-Gyu Kim, one of the first authors of the study and co-initiator of the project, describes the successful cooperation. Previous studies had shown that a special photoreceptor in plants which detects light of the wavelength red/far-red is surprisingly also expressed in the roots. However, it remained unclear how this root photoreceptor was activated. In an interdisciplinary effort, molecular biologists and optical physicists developed a highly sensitive optical detector along with the idea to compare plants with "blind" and "sighted" roots. They used plants of the thale cress Arabidopsis thaliana, a model organism in plant research, which were genetically modified in a way that the photoreceptor was only silenced in their roots, but not in their shoots. Hence, these plants had "blind" roots. The scientists grew these modified plants along with control plants; their roots were in the dark soil and their shoots exposed to light, just like in nature. The optical detector system was used to measure light which was transmitted in the stem down to the roots. "With this approach, we could show clearly and without ambiguity that light is transmitted into the roots via vascular bundles. Even if the intensity of the transmitted light was low, it was sufficient to activate the photoreceptors, trigger downstream light signaling, and influence growth in the control plants," Chung-Mo Park, the leader of the project at Seoul National University, explains. "These results are crucial for further research projects. Our work proves that roots are able to perceive light, even though they are usually found belowground. Photoreception in the roots triggers a signaling chain which influences plant growth, especially the root architecture," says Ian Baldwin, leader of the study at the Max Planck Institute for Chemical Ecology in Jena. He already looks into the future: "There are more photoreceptors in the roots. Until now, it has remained largely unknown what their responsibilities in the roots are and how they interact with light signals which are transmitted from the shoots." It is of major importance for ecological research to show the relevance of this study for plants growing in their natural habitat. To find out, the scientists want to perform experiments with another plant species, the coyote tobacco Nicotiana attenuata, a model plant in ecology, which is adapted to an extremely strong exposition to light. The researchers propose that the newly found sensory modality of roots is enhancing the ecological performance of plants in nature, by allowing for a better timing of resource allocations for growth, reproduction and defense. Explore further: 3-D live imaging reveals how plants grow new lateral roots More information: H.-J. Lee et al, Stem-piped light activates phytochrome B to trigger light responses in Arabidopsis thaliana roots, Science Signaling (2016). DOI: 10.1126/scisignal.aaf6530


News Article | October 31, 2016
Site: www.scientificcomputing.com

Convertible video displays that offer both 2D and 3D imaging without the need of any eyewear offer greater convenience to users who would otherwise have to keep track of yet another accessory. Such autostereoscopic displays have already hit the TV market, but the underlying technology reveals its limitations at close viewing distances. Viewers typically must view these displays from a distance of around one meter (about three feet), eliminating any practical applicability to the smaller screens of mobile devices. Researchers at Seoul National University, South Korea, however, have developed a new method of making these convertible displays that not only achieved near-viewing capabilities, but also simplified and shrank the architecture of the technology. In a paper published this week in the journal Optics Express, from The Optical Society (OSA), the researchers describe their novel design. For eyewear-free displays, the only action is behind the screen where the images' pixels and optics are layered together to produce the stereoscopic effect. The two primary ways of producing these optically illusive effects are by using either an array of micro-lenses, called lenticular lenses, or an array of micro-filters, called parallax barriers, in front of the image to make its appearance depend on the angle at which it is being seen. The simplest example of this effect is found on a movie poster whose image appears to change as you walk by. Two (or more) images are interlaced and printed behind a plastic layer with grooves matching the interlaced pattern. The grooves act as distinct, interlaced arrays of lenses or filters, revealing one image as you approach the poster and another as you depart, viewing the same poster from a different angle. In the case of 2D/3D convertible screens, these layers are active, meaning they can be (electronically) switched on or off. The gap distance between the image layer and the barrier layer is a key determinant of the viewing distance. Closer stacking of these layers together allows for a closer viewing distance. In their paper, Sin-Doo Lee, a professor of electrical engineering at Seoul National University, and his colleagues describe a monolithic structure that effectively combines the active parallax barrier, a polarizing sheet and an image layer into a single panel. Instead of two separate image and barrier panels, they use a polarizing interlayer with the image layer in direct contact with one side of the interlayer, while the active parallax barrier of a liquid crystal layer is formed on the other side as an array of periodically patterned indium-tin-oxide (ITO) electrodes. The use of this interlayer allows the minimum separation of the image and barrier layers, thus providing the short viewing distance required for the smaller screens of mobile devices. "The polarizing interlayer approach here will allow high resolution together with design flexibility of the displays, and will be applicable for fabricating other types of displays such as viewing-angle switchable devices," Lee said. "Our technology will definitely benefit display companies in manufacturing low cost and light weight 2D/3D convertible displays for mobile applications. Under mobile environments, the weight is one of the important factors." This concept not only applies to LC-based 2D/3D displays, but also to OLED-based 2D/3D displays, offering application to a broad range of present and future device designs.


Miyashima S.,University of Helsinki | Sebastian J.,Boyce Thompson Institute for Plant Research | Lee J.-Y.,Boyce Thompson Institute for Plant Research | Lee J.-Y.,Seoul National University | Helariutta Y.,University of Helsinki
EMBO Journal | Year: 2013

The plant vascular system, composed of xylem and phloem, evolved to connect plant organs and transport various molecules between them. During the post-embryonic growth, these conductive tissues constitutively form from cells that are derived from a lateral meristem, commonly called procambium and cambium. Procambium/cambium contains pluripotent stem cells and provides a microenvironment that maintains the stem cell population. Because vascular plants continue to form new tissues and organs throughout their life cycle, the formation and maintenance of stem cells are crucial for plant growth and development. In this decade, there has been considerable progress in understanding the molecular control of the organization and maintenance of stem cells in vascular plants. Noticeable advance has been made in elucidating the role of transcription factors and major plant hormones in stem cell maintenance and vascular tissue differentiation. These studies suggest the shared regulatory mechanisms among various types of plant stem cell pools. In this review, we focus on two aspects of stem cell function in the vascular cambium, cell proliferation and cell differentiation. © 2013 European Molecular Biology Organization.


Kim Y.,Seoul National University | Ha K.-H.,Ulsan National Institute of Science and Technology | Oh S.M.,Seoul National University | Lee K.T.,Ulsan National Institute of Science and Technology
Chemistry - A European Journal | Year: 2014

Na-ion batteries are an attractive alternative to Li-ion batteries for large-scale energy storage systems because of their low cost and the abundant Na resources. This Review provides a comprehensive overview of selected anode materials with high reversible capacities that can increase the energy density of Na-ion batteries. Moreover, we discuss the reaction and failure mechanisms of those anode materials with a view to suggesting promising strategies for improving their electrochemical performance. © 2014 WILEY-VCH Verlag GmbH & Co. KGaA, Weinheim.


Kim S.,Seoul National University | You S.,Pohang University of Science and Technology | Hwang D.,Pohang University of Science and Technology
Nature Reviews Cancer | Year: 2011

Over the past decade, the identification of cancer-associated factors has been a subject of primary interest not only for understanding the basic mechanisms of tumorigenesis but also for discovering the associated therapeutic targets. However, aminoacyl-tRNA synthetases (ARSs) have been overlooked, mostly because many assumed that they were simply 'housekeepers' that were involved in protein synthesis. Mammalian ARSs have evolved many additional domains that are not necessarily linked to their catalytic activities. With these domains, they interact with diverse regulatory factors. In addition, the expression of some ARSs is dynamically changed depending on various cellular types and stresses. This Analysis article addresses the potential pathophysiological implications of ARSs in tumorigenesis. © 2011 Macmillan Publishers Limited. All rights reserved.


Moon H.R.,Ulsan National Institute of Science and Technology | Lim D.-W.,Seoul National University | Suh M.P.,Seoul National University
Chemical Society Reviews | Year: 2013

In this review, we highlight various preparative strategies and characterization methods for metal nanoparticles fabricated in porous metal-organic frameworks (MOFs) or porous coordination polymers (PCPs), and their applications in hydrogen storage and heterogeneous catalysis. © 2013 The Royal Society of Chemistry.


Kim K.,Pohang University of Science and Technology | Lee J.,Seoul National University
Pattern Recognition | Year: 2014

Sentiment analysis, which detects the subjectivity or polarity of documents, is one of the fundamental tasks in text data analytics. Recently, the number of documents available online and offline is increasing dramatically, and preprocessed text data have more features. This development makes analysis more complex to be analyzed effectively. This paper proposes a novel semi-supervised Laplacian eigenmap (SS-LE). The SS-LE removes redundant features effectively by decreasing detection errors of sentiments. Moreover, it enables visualization of documents in perceptible low dimensional embedded space to provide a useful tool for text analytics. The proposed method is evaluated using multi-domain review data set in sentiment visualization and classification by comparing other dimensionality reduction methods. SS-LE provides a better similarity measure in the visualization result by separating positive and negative documents properly. Sentiment classification models trained over reduced data by SS-LE show higher accuracy. Overall, experimental results suggest that SS-LE has the potential to be used to visualize documents for the ease of analysis and to train a predictive model in sentiment analysis. SS-LE can also be applied to any other partially annotated text data sets. © 2013 Elsevier Ltd.


Han T.-H.,Pohang University of Science and Technology | Lee Y.,Sungkyunkwan University | Choi M.-R.,Pohang University of Science and Technology | Woo S.-H.,Pohang University of Science and Technology | And 4 more authors.
Nature Photonics | Year: 2012

Although graphene films have a strong potential to replace indium tin oxide anodes in organic light-emitting diodes (OLEDs), to date, the luminous efficiency of OLEDs with graphene anodes has been limited by a lack of efficient methods to improve the low work function and reduce the sheet resistance of graphene films to the levels required for electrodes1-4. Here, we fabricate flexible OLEDs by modifying the graphene anode to have a high work function and low sheet resistance, and thus achieve extremely high luminous efficiencies (37.2 lm W-1 in fluorescent OLEDs, 102.7 lm W -1 in phosphorescent OLEDs), which are significantly higher than those of optimized devices with an indium tin oxide anode (24.1 lm W -1 in fluorescent OLEDs, 85.6 lm W-1 in phosphorescent OLEDs). We also fabricate flexible white OLED lighting devices using the graphene anode. These results demonstrate the great potential of graphene anodes for use in a wide variety of high-performance flexible organic optoelectronics. © 2012 Macmillan Publishers Limited. All rights reserved.


Shin J.M.,Jai Scientific | Kim N.,Seoul National University
Journal of Neurogastroenterology and Motility | Year: 2013

Proton pump inhibitor (PPI) is a prodrug which is activated by acid. Activated PPI binds covalently to the gastric H+, K+ -ATPase via disulfide bond. Cys813 is the primary site responsible for the inhibition of acid pump enzyme, where PPIs bind.Omeprazole was the first PPI introduced in market, followed by pantoprazole, lansoprazole and rabeprazole. Though these PPIs share the core structures benzimidazole and pyridine, their pharmacokinetics and pharmacodynamics are a little different. Several factors must be considered in understanding the pharmacodynamics of PPIs, including: accumulation of PPI in the parietal cell, the proportion of the pump enzyme located at the canaliculus, de novo synthesis of new pump enzyme, metabolism of PPI, amounts of covalent binding of PPI in the parietal cell, and the stability of PPI binding. PPIs have about 1hour of elimination half-life. Area under the plasmic concentration curve and the intragastric pH profile are very good indicators for evaluating PPI efficacy. Though CYP2C19 and CYP3A4 polymorphism are major components of PPI metabolism, the pharmacokinetics and pharmacodynamics of racemic mixture of PPIs depend on the CYP2C19 genotype status. S-omeprazole is relatively insensitive to CYP2C19, so better control of the intragastric pH is achieved. Similarly, R-lansoprazole was developed in order to increase the drug activity. Delayed-release formulation resulted in a longer duration of effective concentration of R-lansoprazole in blood, in addition to metabolic advantage. Thus, dexlansoprazole showed best control of the intragastric pH among the present PPIs. Overall, PPIs made significant progress in the management of acid-related diseases and improved health-related quality of life ©2013 The Korean Society of Neurogastroenterology and Motility.


Patent
Amore Pacific and Seoul National University | Date: 2014-10-16

The present disclosure relates to a method for inducing pluripotent stem cells by inducing reprogramming and/or dedifferentiation of differentiated adult cells using shikimic acid, a plant extract or plant stem cells containing shikimic acid and an extract of dedifferentiated stem cells (callus), pluripotent stem cells prepared by the method and a composition containing the pluripotent stem cells. In accordance with the present disclosure, ethical concerns implicated with the use of eggs to prepare pluripotent stem cells such as embryonic stem cell can be resolved. And, because the plant stem cell extract unharmful to human is used, pluripotent stem cells with proven safety can be prepared and they may be used to develop immunocompatible cell therapy agents suited for individuals. In addition, by pluripotent stem cells from individuals having diseases, the present disclosure will be very useful in studying the cause of diseases and devolving therapeutic strategy.


Patent
Amore Pacific and Seoul National University | Date: 2016-01-27

The present invention relates to a method for inducing customized pluripotent stem cells, pluripotent stem cells prepared by the method, and a composition comprising the pluripotent stem cells, wherein the customized pluripotent stem cells are induced by reprogramming differentiated adult cells by using shikimic acid, a plant extract containing shikimic acid, or an extract of plant stem cells and re-differentiated plant stem cells (callus). According to the present invention, since an ovum is not used to prepare pluripotent stem cells having the same abilities as embryonic stem cells, ethical problems can be solved. Most of all, by using a plant stem cell extract which is proven to be harmless to humans, pluripotent stem cells having ensured safety can be prepared. Also, the present invention can be used to develop an immune-compatible cell therapeutic agent customized for each subject. In addition, it is expected that the present invention can be very useful in studying a therapeutic method and identifying the cause of a disease by inducing pluripotent stem cells from a subject having the disease. Also, the present invention relates to a composition containing shikimic acid or a plant extract containing shikimic acid.


News Article | January 14, 2016
Site: www.fastcompany.com

It took two decades for the first genetically engineered animal to get approved for your dinner. Now that AquAdvantage salmon—with DNA engineered from three species—is moving forward, more genetically modified meat is likely to follow. But it's not clear how long that will take. Outside the United States, bacon might be next. Researchers at Seoul National University tweaked a gene in pigs that makes them super-muscly, yielding more pork per giant pig butt. Now, the scientists hope to sell their modified pig sperm to farmers in China, where engineered food can sometimes move to market more quickly. Unlike the newly approved salmon, the pig's DNA is simply "edited," taking out a single gene rather than bringing in new genetic material from another animal. That might make it easier for regulators to approve it. Still, in the U.S., it's not clear when, exactly, more GM meat might make it to market. Consumers hate the idea; the FDA received two million comments about the salmon, more than they've gotten for any other single issue. Dozens of supermarkets and restaurants, from Safeway to Red Lobster, have said that they won't buy the fish once it's available. The complicated, ultra-long regulatory process means few companies are willing to try to bring genetically modified meat to market. "If you don't have a fixed timeline to get a regulatory decision back, it provides a very unpredictable pathway for a company that might want to commercialize," says Alison Van Eenennaam, an animal scientist at the University of California, Davis. "When there's no obvious market and it's going to cost—I think it cost them $85 million in 20 years—it's not exactly an attractive path to follow." So why bother? In the case of the salmon, the new farmed fish uses fewer resources to grow; it eats much less food and can be grown in tanks on land, something that's normally too energy intensive. For other animals, genetic engineering for disease resistance could also drastically save resources, and might be one way to help meet a skyrocketing global demand for meat more sustainably. "We lose 20% of all animal protein to disease," says Van Eenennaam. "I think disease resistant animals fit into every single sustainability box you want to mention—animals don't suffer, they don't use antibiotics, their productivity's better. There's generally a positive attitude to breeding disease resistant anything, and we could actually make a difference with this technique in a way that we couldn't using conventional breeding." Now, animals engineered for non-food purposes—pharmaceuticals—tend get approval more quickly because the industry can afford the process. "That's an area where there's potential to have more investment because pharmaceutical production is more lucrative than agriculture," says Van Eenennaam. The FDA recently approved a GM chicken that can lay medicine in its eggs. Last year, they approved a drug-producing transgenic rabbit; in 2009, they approved a goat. And, of course, various GM plants like corn and soy have been approved for years—also because the companies behind the seeds had the money to go through the process. "They still have a very ridiculously expensive process to go through," says Van Eenennaam. "There's just large multinational corporations whereas animal breeding is mostly done by small companies in the public sector." It's possible that GM food animals will become more common as the science improves—new genome-editing tools are making it easier to change DNA without introducing genes from different species. It's a technique that's more exact and mimics variations that would happen naturally after years of breeding. Van Eenennaam, for example, worked on a project that used newer tools to produce a cow without horns, so calves don't have to go through a painful process of de-horning. Because of the method used, and what's known about the safety of the animal, she argues that it doesn't make sense to go through another 20-year process of evaluation. Another research project is using precision genome editing to produce pigs that, in theory, will be able to resist a deadly swine virus. Van Eenennaam believes that genetically engineered animals should be evaluated on a case by case basis—proportional to the actual risk—rather than simply based on the fact that they were genetically engineered. "I would hope that it's going to be more science-based and less process based, which is what it has been up until this point," she says. The FDA can't legally disclose the products it's evaluating, so it's hard to say what might be next. But Van Eenennaam, like others studying genetic engineering, is hoping that the next animal will have an easier path. "Really the fast-growing salmon was just fast-growing salmon," she says. "It's not the first fast-growing animal we've bred, trust me. We do that all the time as breeders, that's pretty much what we breed for. So it didn't make much sense to have such a long and drawn out regulatory process."


News Article | April 6, 2016
Site: www.nature.com

Henry “Hoby” Wedler caught the chemistry bug as a high-school student in Sonoma County, California. He loved to think about atoms and how they fit together to make molecules. Although he wanted to enrol in his school's advanced chemistry course, he faced a frustrating problem: he has been completely blind since birth, and his teacher thought that he might find it too hard. The field was too visual, she told him. Nonsense, Wedler thought. “I said, 'No one can see atoms; it's completely cerebral.'” Now 28, he is studying for a PhD in organic chemistry at the University of California, Davis, and is considering teaching offers. His once-doubting school instructor has become one of his greatest allies. It's not an easy road, but early-career scientists who face physical challenges such as blindness, deafness or paralysis are building varied and rewarding careers. They work in academic, government and industrial research as teachers, consultants and other occupations. Success requires desire, grit and ingenuity. Researchers who have trouble seeing, hearing or with mobility need creative workarounds in the lab and field. They may have to design their own equipment. They need a crew of friends, peers and mentors who can provide support. And they must seek work that capitalizes on their strengths, accepting that some assignments may be beyond their reach — at least for now. “You have to really want to be a scientist a lot, or it won't happen,” says Richard Mankin, a research entomologist for the US Department of Agriculture (USDA) in Gainesville, Florida, who wears braces on his legs and relies on crutches to walk. Despite a patchwork quilt of policies and guidelines that are meant to broaden employment opportunities, disabled people still have trouble finding work. A 2014 analysis by the Campaign for Science and Engineering, which promotes science in the United Kingdom, reported1 that fewer than half of the nation's 5.2 million people of working age with disabilities had jobs between 2010 and 2011. They were more than twice as likely as peers without disabilities to report working part-time, and about half as likely to have jobs in science, technology, engineering and mathematics. Similarly, in 2015, the US National Science Foundation reported2 that about one in nine scientists aged 75 or younger in the United States had a disability. They, too, were more than twice as likely to be out of the labour force than their peers without disabilities. As Wedler found, accessibility issues crop up long before a scientist enters the workforce. German-born climatologist Imke Durre, blind since early childhood, says that her father, a computer scientist, created a Braille word-processing program in the early 1980s to help her to do school work. Such technology is widespread today, says Durre, who works for the US National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration. But she says that there are still practical hurdles to using assistive tools, particularly for students. Even when Braille versions of textbooks are available, teachers may not know about them or be able to order them in time for a class. Figures, tables and graphs typically aren't translated into Braille, so a student with a visual impairment often needs to collaborate with a sighted colleague to interpret visual data — a process that may not go smoothly, says Durre. On occasion, she says with a laugh, she has shown up to a meeting carrying blank pages instead of the hard copies of graphs and tables that she thought she had prepared. Mundane tasks pose barriers, too. James McNutt, who uses a wheelchair and studies the history of science at Queen's University in Kingston, Canada, set out last year to record some of the difficulties that he faces as he travels around the university (see go.nature.com/oaablb). With a video camera attached to his wheelchair, he attempted to open doors, operate lifts and visit washrooms. Buttons, switches and knobs were often out of reach. Doors wouldn't open. Passageways were too narrow or too winding to accommodate a wheelchair easily. “Quite often, the planning people don't have an idea of what is and is not accessible,” says McNutt, who has cerebral palsy. “They don't know how big the wheelchair is. They don't have any idea what it's like.” Audrey Kobayashi, a geographer at Queen's University and a member of the school's committee on campus accessibility, says that the situation has improved greatly over the past two decades. There are now clear lines of responsibility to ensure that students with disabilities get any help they need, and the movement is garnering attention (see 'A worldwide wave of awareness'). But Kobayashi, who uses a wheelchair at work because of a neurological disorder called transverse myelitis, says that a lot of challenges remain. “We're trying to make a barrier-free campus, but it's slow,” she says. The difficulties don't end after receiving a degree. Researchers who have a disability and want to work in a scientific field must first ensure that physical adjustments are made to labs and other workplaces to facilitate access. These can include redesigning lab sinks to accommodate a wheelchair, posting emergency instructions in Braille and checking that doorways to halls with lifts or ramps don't lock automatically and block exits. In the United States, the Americans with Disabilities Act, enacted in 1990, requires accommodations in public spaces. The UK Disability Discrimination Act (1995) and Canada's Accessibility for Ontarians with Disabilities Act (2005) impose similar requirements for their regions. But the laws often do not require retrofitting, and thus many labs that were built before the legislation took effect remain difficult or impossible to navigate for scientists who have mobility issues: aisles are too narrow, tables are too tall and eyewash stations are tucked into inconvenient corners. Some scientists are attacking the problems on their own. Neuroscientist Bradley Duerstock, who has been quadriplegic for more than 25 years, developed a disability-friendly lab space at Purdue University's Center for Paralysis Research in West Lafayette, Indiana, where he researches assistive technologies. With grants from the US National Institutes of Health and other sources, he adapted the 'kitchen work triangle' — a home-design layout concept that imagines the stove, sink and refrigerator as the shape's corners — into a 'wet-laboratory work triangle' defined by the lab sink, lab bench and fume hood. Years ago, he designed a microscope that lets the user control illumination, focus and exposure through a computer interface, rather than tricky-to-operate knobs (now, such microscopes are commercially available). Scientists with disabilities are also installing light switches that are positioned at an accessible height and that are labelled for people who rely on Braille, and they use adjustable-height lab benches and other accommodations. Back in California, Wedler gives credit to his adviser, chemist Dean Tantillo, for hiring him as an undergraduate and for making the lab an easier place to work. With the help of US$30,000 in supplemental funding attached to his US National Science Foundation graduate fellowship, Wedler and other members of Tantillo's team developed a 3D-printing solution that produces tactile models of molecular structures. Different shapes and textures in the models represent different atoms and bonds, and Braille notations describe bond angles and bond lengths. It takes a couple of days to generate each printed model, but Wedler doesn't mind: the homegrown technology allows him to 'feel' the outcomes of his calculations so that he can verify his work on his own. When Duerstock and Susan Mendrysa, then a colleague at Purdue's Institute for Accessible Science, polled coworkers to learn what qualities make a lab most accommodating, they found that working with an established, well-funded principal investigator was key: such scientists were more likely to give staff with disabilities the extra time they might need to complete their studies or to publish papers. Colleagues can also help on a smaller scale. Born with muscles missing in his legs and arms, Mankin has conducted field research internationally since the 1970s, walking with crutches or crawling along the ground to study the sounds and vibrations that insects make in various locations. He seldom works in the field alone, and he keeps his trips short. He asks those who accompany him to manage tasks that he cannot perform, such as carrying equipment and climbing trees. Physical barriers are not the only obstacles: bias can also be an issue. Jae-Hyeon Parq, a postdoctoral researcher at Seoul National University, who has used a wheelchair since sustaining a spinal injury as an undergraduate, worries that his disability will make it hard for him to find a job. Trained as a physicist, Parq now works in the lab of marine geologist Sang-Mook Lee, who has been trying to improve conditions for scientists with disabilities since 2006, when he was paralysed in a car accident. “Most people, especially in Korea, don't understand the diversity of disabled people,” Parq says. “They judge what I can and what I can't do from my appearance.” If Parq can't get a permanent job, he says, he will continue to work for Lee. Those whose disabilities aren't as immediately obvious face a different, yet related problem: whether to tell potential employers. “One of the most common questions I get is, should I say on my CV that I'm deaf?” says biochemist Annemarie Ross of the Rochester Institute of Technology's National Technical Institute for the Deaf in New York. Ross, who is hearing-impaired, tells students that it is their choice — there is no clear advantage for applicants who do or don't reveal a disability. But it's a challenge that must be resolved, she says. “A big barrier in general for our students are the employers. They think, 'If a worker can't hear a fire alarm, how do we make sure they're safe? If they stay behind in a burning lab, we could be liable.'” Often, job candidates must persuade employers to reframe their assumptions in interviews, Ross says. Those with hearing disorders, for example, can see the strobe lights on many modern fire-alarm systems. By the same token, scientists in a lab don't spend much time doing physical tasks. “I was always having to persuade people I could do things from a wheelchair,” says Karl Booksh, an analytical chemist at the University of Delaware in Newark who experienced a spinal cord injury in university. “The way I convinced most of them was pointing out that the most successful faculty members didn't know where the pipettes were to begin with — that the key to success was writing papers and proposals.” Some scientists with disabilities have reframed their impairment as a positive attribute: they say that coping with the challenges of everyday life has helped them to develop unusual skills and expertise. Wedler, for instance, says that navigating town trained his brain to make spot-on mental maps. A similar sort of spatial thinking helps him with organic chemistry. “I was thinking in terms of feet and miles, but there's no reason you can't shrink that down to ångströms,” he says. “In terms of doing the problems, I might have an advantage over my sighted peers.” Mankin is dubious that the stigma against those with disabilities will ever fade completely. He is president of the Foundation for Science and Disability, which sponsors a grant programme that supports the research of graduate students with disabilities. But, he says, he doesn't think of himself as disabled. He is an enthusiast whose voice crackles with excitement when he talks about his work. He is studying psyllids, insects that cause a tree-damaging disease that threatens Florida's $10-billion citrus industry, and he has been developing systems that use vibrations to lure and trap male psyllids to prevent them from mating with females nearby. The approach could offer an alternative to pesticides, and has attracted the attention of federal legislators. “Being a scientist has been lots of fun,” Mankin says. “I've done things that I hope have benefitted humanity. This is what I always wanted to do.”


POHANG, SOUTH KOREA, March 03, 2017-- Dr. Young-Seok Kim has been included in Marquis Who's Who. As in all Marquis Who's Who biographical volumes, individuals profiled are selected on the basis of current reference value. Factors such as position, noteworthy accomplishments, visibility, and prominence in a field are all taken into account during the selection process.A practiced expert in the field of sports science & technology, Dr. Kim serves as a professor in the Department of Creative IT Engineering and vice director of the Future IT Innovation Laboratory at Pohang University of Science and Technology (POSTECH). Additionally, he serves as the director of the Sports Engineering Institute for POSTECH. Dr. Kim is a pioneer in sports science and technology in Korea, and as such, he conducts research in the field and developed a course in sports ICT convergence. Earlier in his career, Dr. Kim held professional roles, including senior researcher at Cheil Worldwide, Samsung and the Institute for Sports Science at Seoul National University, and secretary general, head of a government organization of Sports in Gyeonggi Province, Korea.Dr. Kim holds a Ph.D. in sports science, Seoul National University. Throughout his career, he has contributed his extensive and unique knowledge to a plethora of research and projects. In the early 2000s, he lent his expertise to the Olympic Games (the Sydney 2000, the Salt Lake 2002, and the Athens 2004). One of Dr. Kim's upcoming projects has him serving as part of the Sports ICT Convergence Research and Development, Ministry of Culture, Sports, and Tourism, Korea where he is working on the development of a multi-view, multi-channel broadcasting system for the PyeongChang 2018 Winter Olympic Games. Notably, Dr. Kim has also contributed his knowledge to the book "Deciphering the 12 Codes of Korean Football," along with other scholars.Dr. Kim's professional affiliations include the Korean Society for Sports Management, the IEEE, and the Journal of Global Sports Management. Over the years, he has been celebrated for his professional accomplishments, earning the Excellent Teaching Award from POSTECH, the Management Innovation of the Year Award from the government, Gyeonggi Province, Korea, and an Achievement Award for Dedication to the Development of International Sports from HRH Infanta Dona Pilar, IOC member of Spain.About Marquis Who's Who :Since 1899, when A. N. Marquis printed the First Edition of Who's Who in America , Marquis Who's Who has chronicled the lives of the most accomplished individuals and innovators from every significant field of endeavor, including politics, business, medicine, law, education, art, religion and entertainment. Today, Who's Who in America remains an essential biographical source for thousands of researchers, journalists, librarians and executive search firms around the world. Marquis publications may be visited at the official Marquis Who's Who website at www.marquiswhoswho.com


News Article | January 5, 2016
Site: phys.org

Seo Seung-Woo, director of the Intelligent Vehicle IT Research Center at Seoul National University, said the university has been testing the driverless taxi to transport disabled students around campus. The vehicle, called Snuber, has been navigating the 4,109 square meter (44,200 square foot) campus for the past six months without any accidents. It works in conjunction with a hailing app created by the university. Companies around the world are betting that automated driving technology will transform public transportation. In Japan, a company called Robot Taxi Inc. plans to offer a full commercial service in 2020. In Greece, driverless buses called CityMobil2 have been tested in real traffic. General Motors Co. said Monday it is investing $500 million in ride-hailing company Lyft Inc. and forming a partnership that could eventually lead to on-demand, self-driving cars. South Korean companies, however, have been slow to embrace the self-driving technology. The country's largest carmaker, Hyundai Motor Co., said it expects to roll out a fully automated car in 2030. Only this month, Samsung Electronics created a team to focus on autonomous driving. On the campus of Seoul National University, many heads turn as the grey sedan passes. It has turret on its roof with devices that scan road conditions. Seo's team outfitted the Genesis sedan with a camera, laser scanners and other sensors. For now, due to regulations banning autonomous vehicles on the roads, a driver is behind the steering wheel and can override the automation in emergency situations. The car cannot travel faster than 30 kilometers per hour (18.6 miles per hour) because of the speed limit on campus. There are no full traffic lights but researchers have programmed Snuber to navigate around other challenges. The vehicle applies a brake pedal at a red stop sign and at a pedestrian crosswalk. When another vehicle stops in the middle of the road, the automated sedan will scan the other lanes to detect vehicles traveling from the opposite direction. If there are no other vehicles, the Snuber moves into the oncoming lane to pass the vehicle. However, it is not yet ready for use outside the relatively controlled campus environment. "It will take a huge amount of time and effort," said Seo. "We need more tests in real traffic conditions." He said in early 2020, a driverless car will be running between tollgates on highways. A door-to-door pickup service using a self-driving car is likely in early 2030, he said. Experts said such services have the potential to change delivery businesses, not only mass transport. Explore further: CEO: Nissan will be ready with autonomous driving by 2020


News Article | February 17, 2017
Site: hosted2.ap.org

(AP) — South Korea was taken by surprise Friday with the arrest of the scion of the country's richest family and de-facto leader at Samsung over his alleged involvement in a massive corruption scandal that engulfed the president and riveted the nation. Prosecutors believe Lee Jae-yong, 48, a vice chairman at Samsung Electronics and the only son of the ailing Samsung chairman, gave bribes worth $36 million to President Park Geun-hye and her close friend to help win government support for a smooth company leadership transition, including a contentious merger of two Samsung companies. A look at how his arrest affects the electronics giant: Some conservative commentators are worried that Lee's arrest could hurt Samsung's businesses and therefore the economy, which relies on such companies for exports and jobs. But others dismiss such concern as exaggerated. "What would affect its businesses are the Galaxy phone's success, the performance of the semiconductor sector and how fast Chinese rivals are catching up, not whether Lee Jae-yong is arrested or not," said Park Sang-in, a professor at Seoul National University. Chiefs of companies such as Hyundai Motor Group and SK Group have been jailed before but still ran their companies from behind bars. Samsung Electronics, which is the world's largest maker of mobile phones, TVs and computer memory chips, has three separate chief executive officers each overseeing its electronic component, mobile phone and television divisions. But long-term business decisions, such as appointing executives and deciding on mergers and acquisitions, may be put on hold. Samsung normally announces personnel reshuffling and promotions each December, but postponed those announcements in 2016 as it was dragged deeper into the political scandal. Lee is not the first in his family to face criminal charges. His father was convicted in 2008 and 2009 for embezzlement and tax evasion related to business dealings designed to pass down wealth to his son. Lee Kun-hee, the ailing chairman, stepped away from his role at the company when prosecutors indicted him in 2008. The younger Lee will likely follow a similar course and stay away from leadership role once investigators formally bring charges against him. As he stepped up his role in the absence of his ailing father, Lee was seen as the new face of Samsung, fluent in foreign languages and educated oversees. Since Lee assumed a bigger role, Samsung promised to inject the company's top-down hierarchy with a nimble, startup-like attitude. Corruption allegations similar to those that took down his father may mean the damage to Lee's reputation is irreversible. Prosecutors were able to secure Lee's arrest in their second attempt, thanks to new evidence showing President Park's broader involvement in Samsung's family succession plan. Initially, prosecutors focused on their argument that Samsung offered bribes and in return, the government backed a controversial merger of two Samsung companies in 2015, which was a key step in the leadership transition. But after the initial request was dismissed, additional evidence from a notebook that belonged to a top presidential adviser showed that the government gave favors to Samsung in other areas related to the Lee family's father-to-son succession, said Lee Kyu-chul, a spokesman for the special prosecution team. Thanks to the family's decadeslong succession plan, the 48-year-old heir to Samsung was able to amass enormous wealth even before starting his own business. Lee's net worth is estimated at $6 billion. Here's how: In 1995, the elder Lee gave his only son, then in his 20s, 6 billion won ($52 million), which became the seed money to purchase unlisted stock in several Samsung companies. And during the next two decades those unlisted Samsung companies saw increased revenues based on lucrative deals done with other Samsung firms. The shares could then be sold when the companies went public. Some Samsung securities were sold at illegally cheap prices to Lee before he sold them off with huge returns, which later led to the conviction of his father. With the Samsung scion's arrest, others saw an opportunity to change a business community long criticized for poor corporate governance and a lack of transparency. Even though Lee has less than a 1 percent stake in Samsung Electronics and his father owns a 3.5 percent stake, the family's influence on the consumer electronics giant and other Samsung companies exceed other shareholders thanks in part to the way they control the business empire through a complicated web of cross-shareholding. The merger between Samsung C&T and Cheil Industries in 2015 was one example showing how the Lee family could exert an outsized influence on Samsung Group. Opponents of the merger, mostly minority shareholders, said the deal unfairly benefits the founding family while hurting other shareholders by devaluing the price of one company. Samsung narrowly won the shareholder approval thanks to the support from the National Pension Fund, its key investor. Lee became the majority shareholder of the merged entity and he gained control over Samsung Electronics stock owned by Samsung C&T before the merger. If Lee had bought more Samsung Electronics stock, it would have cost him billions of dollars. But by merging two companies, he did not have to spend a penny. "The arrest of Lee Jae-yong should provide a momentum for fundamental changes to end the collusion between the government and businesses, and reform the chaebol," said Park, referring to the family-controlled business conglomerates that dominate the economy.


Samsung is banking on its 10-nanometer FinFET technology to power its upcoming flagship, the Galaxy S8, but reports suggest that the chip may not be all cut and dried. Samsung is on the brink of facing a lawsuit over allegedly infringing a patent on the aforementioned FinFET technology, the same one Samsung has boasted about generously and the same one crucial to the manufacturing process of the Qualcomm Snapdragon 835. The lawsuit comes from KAIST IP, the intellectual property management arm of the Korea Advanced Institute of Science & Technology, the research university confirmed Wednesday. According to the report, KAIST developed FinFET but was stolen by Samsung when it invited FinFET developer Lee Jong-ho to do a presentation on the technology to engineers at Samsung's turf. Lee is a professor at Seoul National University, KAIST's partner institution. For perspective, Intel also uses FinFET technology but has acquired proper licenses from KAIST to do so, while Samsung hasn't gone through the same process. Intel pays royalties to KAIST for using the patent. Apart from Samsung, KAIST also sued Qualcomm and Global Foundries, the latter of which has secured a licensing agreement with Samsung. KAIST will also target Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Company, or TSMC, once it procures proof of patent infringement. The technology in question, FinFET, is a crucial component in manufacturing advanced processors for mobile handsets. It's a transistor designed to improve semiconductor performance and reduce power consumption. KAIST alleges that Samsung developed its own technology identical to FinFET, reducing development time and cost by copying the technology Lee developed. Samsung hasn't issued proper credit or provided compensation to Lee or KAIST. A 10-nanometer chip developed with FinFET technology will power the Samsung Galaxy S8. Other Galaxy S8 rumors purport the phone to rock curved displays for all of its variants, a step away from Samsung's curved and flat display combo found on the Galaxy S7 and S7 edge. The smartphone could also have 5.7-inch and 6.2-inch display variants, in an attempt for Samsung to appeal to Note customers. The smartphone might also come with wireless charging and a touch-based power button. Samsung will also incorporate artificial intelligence to power the Galaxy S8's voice assistant, similar with Google's Assistant feature. The assistant will reportedly be called Viv, an offspring of Samsung-acquired Viv Labs, run by Siri's cocreator, which might spell good fortune for Samsung's AI push. The Galaxy S8 is slated for a 2017 unveiling. © 2017 Tech Times, All rights reserved. Do not reproduce without permission.


News Article | February 27, 2017
Site: www.eurekalert.org

Scientists at Rutgers and other universities have created a new way to identify the state and fate of stem cells earlier than previously possible. Understanding a stem cell's fate -- the type of cell it will eventually become -- and how far along it is in the process of development can help scientists better manipulate cells for stem cell therapy. The beauty of the method is its simplicity and versatility, said Prabhas V. Moghe, distinguished professor of biomedical engineering and chemical and biochemical engineering at Rutgers and senior author of a study published recently in the journal Scientific Reports. "It will usher in the next wave of studies and findings," he added. Existing approaches to assess the states of stem cells look at the overall population of cells but aren't specific enough to identify individual cells' fates. But when implanting stem cells (during a bone marrow transplant following cancer treatment, for example), knowing that each cell will become the desired cell type is essential. Furthermore, many protein markers used to distinguish cell types don't show up until after the cell has transitioned, which can be too late for some applications. To identify earlier signals of a stem cell's fate, an interdisciplinary team from multiple universities collaborated to use super-resolution microscopy to analyze epigenetic modifications. Epigenetic modifications change how DNA is wrapped up within the nucleus, allowing different genes to be expressed. Some modifications signal that a stem cell is transitioning into a particular type of cell, such as a blood, bone or fat cell. Using the new method, the team of scientists was able to determine a cell's fate days before other techniques. "Having the ability to visualize a stem cell's future will take some of the questions out of using stem cells to help regenerate tissue and treat diseases," says Rosemarie Hunziker, program director for Tissue Engineering and Regenerative Medicine at the National Institute of Biomedical Imaging and Bioengineering. "It's a relatively simple way to get a jump on determining the right cells to use." The approach, called EDICTS (Epi-mark Descriptor Imaging of Cell Transitional States), involves labeling epigenetic modifications and then imaging the cells with super resolution to see the precise location of the marks. "We're able to demarcate and catch changes in these cells that are actually not distinguished by established techniques such as mass spectrometry," Moghe said. He described the method as "fingerprinting the guts of the cell," and the results are quantifiable descriptors of each cell's organization (for example, how particular modifications are distributed throughout the nuclei). The team demonstrated the method's capabilities by measuring two types of epigenetic modifications in the nuclei of human stem cells cultured in a dish. They added chemicals that coaxed some of the cells to become fat cells and others to become bone, while another set served as control. Within three days, the localization of the modifications varied in cells destined for different fates, two to four days before traditional methods could identify such differences between the cells. The technique had the specificity to look at regional changes within individual cells, while existing techniques can only measure total levels of modifications among the entire population of cells. "The levels are not significantly different, but how they're organized is different and that seems to correlate with the fact that these cells are actually exhibiting different fates," Moghe said. "It allows us to take out a single cell from a population of dissimilar cells," which can help researchers select particular cells for different stem cell applications. The method is as easy as labeling, staining and imaging cells - techniques already familiar to many researchers, he said. As the microscopes capable of super resolution imaging become more widely available, scientists can use it to sort and screen different types of cells, understand how a particular drug may disrupt epigenetic signaling, or ensure that stem cells to be implanted won't transform into the wrong cell type. - Teal Burrell for the National Institute of Biomedical Imaging and Bioengineering. The study's lead author is Joseph J. Kim, formerly of Rutgers and now at the Stanford University School of Medicine. Other authors include Neal K. Bennett, Mitchel S. Devita, Sanjay Chahar and Michael P. Verzi of Rutgers; Satish Viswanath and Anant Madabhushi of Case Western Reserve University; Eunjee A. Lee, Giyoung Jung and Nathaniel S. Hwang of Seoul National University; Paul P. Shao of Princeton University; Erin P. Childers of the University of Akron; Shichong Liu of the University of Pennsylvania; Anthony Kulesa, formerly of Rutgers and now at MIT; Benjamin A. Garcia of the University of Pennsylvania; and Matthew L. Becker of the University of Akron. The corresponding author and lead PI on the study is Prabhas V. Moghe of Rutgers.


Lee T.,Seoul National University | Chen Y.,University of California at Los Angeles
MRS Bulletin | Year: 2012

Resistive memory devices based on organic materials that can be configured to two or more stable resistance states have been extensively explored as information storage media due to their advantages, which include simple device structures, low fabrication costs, and flexibility. Various organic-based materials such as small molecules, polymers, and composite materials have been observed to show bistability. This review provides a general summary about the materials, structures, characteristics, and mechanisms of organic resistive memory devices. Several critical strategies for device fabrication, performance enhancement, and integrated circuit architectures are also discussed. © 2012 Materials Research Society.


Huang Y.-T.,University of California at Los Angeles | Lee S.,Seoul National University
Physical Review Letters | Year: 2012

We propose a new integral formula for all tree-level scattering amplitudes of N=6 supersymmetric Chern-Simons theory. It resembles the Roiban-Spradlin- Volovich-Witten formula for N=4 supersymmetric Yang-Mills theory based on a twistor string theory formulation. Our formula implies that the (2k)-point tree-level amplitude is closely related to degree (k-1) curves in CPk -1. © 2012 American Physical Society.


Chen D.Y.-K.,Seoul National University | Pouwer R.H.,Griffith University | Richard J.-A.,Institute of Chemical and Engineering Sciences, Singapore
Chemical Society Reviews | Year: 2012

In this tutorial review, recent advances in the synthesis of cyclopropane-containing natural products are discussed, highlighting the application of novel synthetic methodologies and innovative synthetic strategies in the construction of highly functionalized cyclopropanes. The examples showcased herein aim to inspire students and practitioners of organic synthesis to seek further advances in the chemical synthesis of cyclopropanes, both in the context of target-oriented syntheses and method developments. © 2012 The Royal Society of Chemistry.


Richard J.-A.,Institute of Chemical and Engineering Sciences, Singapore | Pouwer R.H.,Institute of Chemical and Engineering Sciences, Singapore | Chen D.Y.-K.,Seoul National University
Angewandte Chemie - International Edition | Year: 2012

With their fascinating biological profiles and stunningly complex molecular architectures, the polycyclic polyprenylated acylphloroglucinols (PPAPs) have long provided a fertile playing field for synthetic organic chemists. In particular, the recent advent of innovative synthetic methods and strategies together with C-C bond-forming reactions and asymmetric catalysis have revitalized this field tremendously. Consequently, PPAP targets which once seemed beyond reach have now been synthesized. This Review aims to highlight the recent achievements in the total synthesis of PPAPs, as well as notable methods developed for the construction of the bicyclo[3.3.1] core of these chemically and biologically intriguing molecules. Recently completed total syntheses and the ingenious synthetic approaches developed for the construction of the biologically significant polycyclic polyprenylated acylphloroglucinols (PPAPs) are presented in this Review. The state-of-the-art synthetic methods and strategies, current limitations, as well as the outlook for this field are highlighted. Copyright © 2012 WILEY-VCH Verlag GmbH & Co. KGaA, Weinheim.


Koo H.I.,Qualcomm | Cho N.I.,Seoul National University
IEEE Transactions on Image Processing | Year: 2012

Text-line extraction in unconstrained handwritten documents remains a challenging problem due to nonuniform character scale, spatially varying text orientation, and the interference between text lines. In order to address these problems, we propose a new cost function that considers the interactions between text lines and the curvilinearity of each text line. Precisely, we achieve this goal by introducing normalized measures for them, which are based on an estimated line spacing. We also present an optimization method that exploits the properties of our cost function. Experimental results on a database consisting of 853 handwritten Chinese document images have shown that our method achieves a detection rate of 99.52% and an error rate of 0.32%, which outperforms conventional methods. © 2011 IEEE.


Kim Y.,Jilin University | Li W.,Jilin University | Shin S.,Seoul National University | Lee M.,Jilin University
Accounts of Chemical Research | Year: 2013

Toroidal nanostructures are symmetrical ring-shaped structures with a central internal pore. Interestingly, in nature, many transmembrane proteins such as β-barrels and α-helical bundles have toroidal shapes. Because of this similarity, toroidal nanostructures can provide a template for the development of transmembrane channels. However, because of the lack of guiding principles for the construction of toroids, researchers have not widely studied the self-assembly of toroidal nanostructures as compared with the work on other supramolecular architectures.In this Account, we describe our recent efforts to construct toroidal nanostructures through the self-assembly of rationally designed building blocks. In one strategy for building these structures, we induce interfacial curvatures within the building blocks. When we laterally graft a bulky hydrophilic segment onto a p-oligophenyl rod or β-sheet peptides, the backbones of the self-assembled structures can bend in response to the steric effect of these large side groups, driving the p-oligophenyl rod or β-sheet peptides to form nanosized toriods. In another strategy, we can build toroids from bent-shaped building blocks by stacking the macrocycles. Aromatic segments with an internal angle of 120 can associate with each other in aqueous solution to form a hexameric macrocycle. Then these macrocycles can stack on top of each other via hydrophobic and π-π interactions and form highly uniform toroidal nanostructures. We provide many examples that illustrate these guiding principles for constructing toroidal nanostructures in aqueous solution.Efforts to create toroidal nanostructures through the self-assembly of elaborately designed molecular modules provide a fundamental approach toward the development of artificial transmembrane channels. Among the various toroids that we developed, a few nanostructures can insert into lipid membranes and allow limited transport in vesicles. © 2013 American Chemical Society.


Patent
Seoul National University and Lsis Co. | Date: 2013-07-01

Disclosed is a DC-DC converter. The DC-DC converter includes a power input unit to which power is applied, a first module comprising a first transformer and a second transformer to output a first output power transformed according to operations of a first switch and a second switch connected with the first transformer and the second transformer by using the applied power, a second module comprising a third transformer and a fourth transformer to output a second output power transformed according to operations of a third switch and a fourth switch connected with the third transformer and the fourth transformer by using the applied power, an output unit to output a sum of the first output power and the second output power, and a controller to control an interleaving operations between the first module and the second module.


Patent
Snu R&Db Foundation and Seoul National University | Date: 2011-08-05

The present invention provides, as a novel diagnosis marker for type 1 diabetes mellitus, a type 1 diabetes mellitus diagnostic composition comprising alanyl-tRNA synthetase, glycyl-tRNA synthetase, asparaginyl-tRNA synthetase, or tryptophanyl-tRNA synthetase, a diagnostic kit comprising the same, and a diagnostic method using the same. The composition, the kit, and the method, according to the present invention, may be used for early diagnosis and confirmed diagnosis of type 1 diabetes mellitus because type 1 diabetes mellitus can be easily diagnosed from a patient sample.


News Article | April 19, 2016
Site: news.yahoo.com

NEW ORLEANS — Eating nuts has been linked to a number of health benefits, such as a reduced risk of obesity, diabetes and heart disease. Now, new findings from South Korea suggest that a nut-rich diet may also reduce a person's risk of colon cancer. The researchers found a reduction in this risk for both men and women, according to the findings, presented here today (April 18) at the American Association for Cancer Research's annual meeting. Eating a serving of nuts three or more times a week appeared to have a big effect on risk, said Dr. Aesun Shin, an associate professor of preventive medicine at Seoul National University College of Medicine in South Korea and an author of the study. In the study, a serving of nuts was considered to be 15 grams (0.5 ounces), Shin told Live Science. That's a smaller amount than what's considered a serving in the United States, she added. (A serving in the U.S. is 28 g, or 1 oz.) Although the researchers included many types of nuts in their analysis, peanuts were the most widely consumed nuts among people in the study. This may be due to the availability of peanuts in South Korea, the researchers said. [6 Foods That Are Good For Your Brain] To examine the relationship between eating nuts and colon cancer risk, the researchers looked at 923 patients who had been diagnosed with colon cancer and compared their diets with those of 1,846 people who did not have colon cancer. The researchers found that men who reported eating three or more servings of nuts a week had a 69 percent lower risk of colon cancer than those who reported eating no nuts. Women who ate three or more servings had an 81 percent lower risk than those who ate no nuts, according to the study. In addition, the researchers looked at several different types of colon cancer, based on the location in the colon where the cancer is found. Nut consumption was associated with a reduced risk across all of the different locations that the researchers examined, Shin said. The study does not prove a cause-and-effect relationship between eating nuts and having a lower risk of colon cancer, the researchers said. However, the researchers hypothesized that some of the compounds, including fiber and antioxidants, found in nuts may help reduce a person's risk of colon cancer. [Top 10 Cancer-Fighting Foods] Shin noted that a limitation of the study is that participants were asked to recall their own nut intake, and it's possible that they may have made mistakes. The findings have not been published in a peer-reviewed journal. Copyright 2016 LiveScience, a Purch company. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.


News Article | September 20, 2016
Site: www.cemag.us

Graphene nanoribbons customized for medical use by William Sikkema, a Rice graduate student and co-lead author of the paper, are highly soluble in polyethylene glycol (PEG), a biocompatible polymer gel used in surgeries, pharmaceutical products and in other biological applications. When the biocompatible nanoribbons have their edges functionalized with PEG chains and are then further mixed with PEG, they form an electrically active network that helps the severed ends of a spinal cord reconnect. “Neurons grow nicely on graphene because it’s a conductive surface and it stimulates neuronal growth,” Tour says. In experiments at Rice and elsewhere, neurons have been observed growing along graphene. “We’re not the only lab that has demonstrated neurons growing on graphene in a petri dish,” he says. “The difference is other labs are commonly experimenting with water-soluble graphene oxide, which is far less conductive than graphene, or nonribbonized structures of graphene. “We’ve developed a way to add water-solubilizing polymer chains to the edges of our nanoribbons that preserves their conductivity while rendering them soluble, and we’re just now starting to see the potential for this in biomedical applications,” he says. He added that ribbonized graphene structures allow for much smaller amounts to be used while preserving a conductive pathway that bridges the damaged spinal cords. Tour says only 1 percent of Texas-PEG consists of nanoribbons, but that’s enough to form a conductive scaffold through which the spinal cord can reconnect. Texas-PEG succeeded in restoring function in a rodent with a severed spinal cord in a procedure performed at Konkuk University in South Korea by co-authors Bae Hwan Lee and C-Yoon Kim. Tour says the material reliably allowed motor and sensory neuronal signals to cross the gap 24 hours after complete transection of the spinal cord and almost perfect motor control recovery after two weeks. “This is a major advance over previous work with PEG alone, which gave no recovery of sensory neuronal signals over the same period of time and only 10 percent motor control over four weeks,” Tour says. The project began when Sikkema read about work by Italian neurosurgeon Sergio Canavero. Sikkema thought nanoribbons might enhance research that depended on PEG’s ability to promote the fusion of cell membranes by adding electrical conductivity and directional control for neurons as they spanned the gap between sections of the spinal cord. Contact with the doctor led to a collaboration with the South Korean researchers. Tour says Texas-PEG’s potential to help patients with spinal cord injuries is too promising to be minimized. “Our goal is to develop this as a way to address spinal cord injury. We think we’re on the right path,” he says. “This is an exciting neurophysiological analysis following complete severance of a spinal cord,” Tour says. “It is not a behavioral or locomotive study of the subsequent repair. The tangential singular locomotive analysis here is an intriguing marker, but it is not in a statistically significant set of animals. The next phases of the study will highlight the locomotive and behavioral skills with statistical relevance to assess whether these qualities follow the favorable neurophysiology that we recorded here.” Kim, co-primary author of the paper, is a research professor in the Department of Stem Cell Biology, School of Medicine, Konkuk University, Seoul, South Korea, and a researcher at Seoul National University. Lee is an associate professor of physiology at the Yonsei University College of Medicine, Seoul. Co-authors are In-Kyu Hwang of Konkuk University, Hanseul Oh of Seoul National University and Un Jeng Kim of the Yonsei University College of Medicine. Tour is the T.T. and W.F. Chao Professor of Chemistry as well as a professor of computer science and of materials science and nanoengineering.


News Article | February 22, 2017
Site: www.techradar.com

Twenty years ago today, a team of researchers from Scotland gathered the world's media together for a major press conference. The scientists, led by Ian Wilmut, Keith Campbell and their colleagues at the Roslin Institute at the University of Edinburgh, had - the first mammal to be created from a single adult body cell. The sheep's name? Dolly. Dolly had actually been born the previous year - on 5 July 1996. She was a perfectly normal sheep in every way, except that she was an exact genetic copy of another one. Technically, she had three mothers - one provided the egg, another the DNA and a third gave birth to her. Her creation was a biological triumph. Before Dolly, it was believed that animals could only be produced when an egg cell is fertilised by a sperm cell. There's a good reason why nature works this way - it mixes up genetic material from two individuals, decreasing the chance of a weakness being passed from parent to child. That's also the reason why incest is a really bad idea - a small gene pool is dangerous for the long-term health of a population. Genetic diversity is good. Dolly was created in a different way - a process that biologists call " ". No sperm is involved - instead, you use a body cell from an adult animal that you want to clone, and an egg cell. Remove the nucleus from both, pop the one from the body cell into the now-empty egg cell, and you get a cell that's ready to begin doubling. Zap it with some electricity and it'll start dividing. Sounds simple, right? It wasn't that easy - Dolly was the single success in 277 different tries at the process. It took decades of experiments before she was born, but today, we're a lot better at it. Only - though it does depend on the kind of cell used for the cloning, and the species. That's about the same rate as the number of human pregnancies that end in miscarriage, though it's two to three times higher than the abortion rate in livestock, which sits between three and five percent. Dolly lived 6.5 years in Edinburgh, giving birth to six lambs in total, before being euthanized in 2003 because she had contracted severe arthritis and a form of lung cancer. Normally, her species lives 11 to 12 years, but the cancer is common in sheep, and the researchers said there was no connection between her status as a clone and the disease. In 2016, a (including four from Dolly's cell line) found no evidence of a detrimental long-term effect of cloning. After death, Dolly's body was donated to the National Museum of Scotland. While Dolly was a massive step forward in the science of cloning, the field has moved on considerably in the twenty years since she was introduced to the public. Other large mammals have been cloned - in the sport of polo, pony clones have totally transformed how the best players in the world compete. In 2015, Vanity Fair a player preparing to compete on a pony that had died nearly a decade beforehand. In 2004, a maine-coon cat (like the one pictured above) named " " was the first pet to be cloned commercially, kicking off a multimillion dollar industry. Little Nicky's owner, a woman named only as "Julie", paid $50,000 for the procedure. In 2008, Seoul National University created five clones of a dog named "Booger" for the same fee. In the United Arab Emirates, a cloned camel named " " was born in 2009. Since then, the industry has exploded. While the fuss over genetically-modified food in the West has put most farmers off the idea of cloning the tastiest livestock, Asian farmers seem to have no such qualms. Lurid headlines tell of cloning factories in Korea that create 500 new animals every day , or Chinese cloning on an "industrial scale" in an old shoe factory . "If it tastes good you should sequence it," Wang Jun, the owner of the cloning facility in the second of those two examples, told BBC News in 2014. As you might expect, this commercialisation of cloning technology has drawn ethical concerns. The cost of cloning a single animal could save thousands of abandoned pets in shelters from being euthanised, while some have highlighted the lack of knowledge we have of the long-term health effects of cloning in a variety of species. So far, those concerns have not been sufficient to sway public opinion towards an all-out ban on the practice. Meanwhile, researchers have turned their attention to trickier puzzles. Creating cloned animals is not as useful as using to tweak genetic material far faster than could be done using traditional animal breeding techniques. In 2006, for example, biologists . In 2015, that were safe from the most economically-damaging swine disease in the world. De-extinction is another possibility with cloning techniques. Putting genetic material from an extinct species into the egg of a closely-related living species creates a clone of a dead animal. In 2013, Australian researchers of the gastric brooding frog - a species that is thought to have been extinct since 1983 - though the embryos died after a few days. Recently, a story spread about a Harvard geneticist to create elephant embryos with wooly mammoth genes within two years ( one paleoanthropologist questioned the breathless media coverage of the story ). Then there's humans. To date, no-one has publicly announced the successful creation of a human clone. There are two reasons why you might want to clone human genetic material - the first is for medicine (to use in medicine and transplants). We've learnt a lot from the study of human embryonic stem cells in recent years, and it's not out of the question that we could clone individual organs for transplant in the future. Bone marrow transplants are commonly performed using human stem cells, but otherwise the technique is firmly in the research stage, not active medical use, at the time of writing. The second is for reproduction, and this is where things start getting really contentious. In the wake of Dolly's birth in 1997, there was much discussion around the world on the subject of cloning and about 70 countries banned the creation of human clones. The UN General Assembly similarly banned all forms of human cloning in 2005 . But research continues. In 1998, a biotech firm using the nucleus from a human leg cell and the egg of a cow. The embryo developed, and was destroyed after 12 days. In 2008, a different firm using skin cell nuclei and human eggs, which were again purposefully destroyed within a few days. We don't know what would have happened if either had been left to develop. There's no reason to believe that we'd be any worse at creating human clones than we are any other species, and is pretty clear. But no researcher to date has been willing to stick their neck out and take on the thorny ethical issues that the creation of a full human clone will involve. That's where we're at in 20AD -- twenty years after Dolly. It's hard to believe that the status quo around reproductive human cloning will hold for very long, especially while the commercialisation of animal cloning and science of therapeutic human cloning develops. As we gain greater understanding of the processes that govern life, and the technology to control it, there's little doubt that someone, somewhere will take the step of creating the first clone of a human being. The biggest question that remains is: how will we respond?


Home > Press > Graphene nanoribbons show promise for healing spinal injuries: Rice University scientists develop Texas-PEG to help knit severed, damaged spinal cords Abstract: The combination of graphene nanoribbons made with a process developed at Rice University and a common polymer could someday be of critical importance to healing damaged spinal cords in people, according to Rice chemist James Tour. The Tour lab has spent a decade working with graphene nanoribbons, starting with the discovery of a chemical process to "unzip" them from multiwalled carbon nanotubes, as revealed in a Nature paper in 2009. Since then, the researchers have used them to enhance materials for the likes of deicers for airplane wings, better batteries and less-permeable containers for natural gas storage. Now their work to develop nanoribbons for medical applications has resulted in a material dubbed Texas-PEG that may help knit damaged or even severed spinal cords. A paper on the results of preliminary animal-model tests appears today in the journal Surgical Neurology International. Graphene nanoribbons customized for medical use by William Sikkema, a Rice graduate student and co-lead author of the paper, are highly soluble in polyethylene glycol (PEG), a biocompatible polymer gel used in surgeries, pharmaceutical products and in other biological applications. When the biocompatible nanoribbons have their edges functionalized with PEG chains and are then further mixed with PEG, they form an electrically active network that helps the severed ends of a spinal cord reconnect. "Neurons grow nicely on graphene because it's a conductive surface and it stimulates neuronal growth," Tour said. In experiments at Rice and elsewhere, neurons have been observed growing along graphene. "We're not the only lab that has demonstrated neurons growing on graphene in a petri dish," he said. "The difference is other labs are commonly experimenting with water-soluble graphene oxide, which is far less conductive than graphene, or nonribbonized structures of graphene. "We've developed a way to add water-solubilizing polymer chains to the edges of our nanoribbons that preserves their conductivity while rendering them soluble, and we're just now starting to see the potential for this in biomedical applications," he said. He added that ribbonized graphene structures allow for much smaller amounts to be used while preserving a conductive pathway that bridges the damaged spinal cords. Tour said only 1 percent of Texas-PEG consists of nanoribbons, but that's enough to form a conductive scaffold through which the spinal cord can reconnect. Texas-PEG succeeded in restoring function in a rodent with a severed spinal cord in a procedure performed at Konkuk University in South Korea by co-authors Bae Hwan Lee and C-Yoon Kim. Tour said the material reliably allowed motor and sensory neuronal signals to cross the gap 24 hours after complete transection of the spinal cord and almost perfect motor control recovery after two weeks. "This is a major advance over previous work with PEG alone, which gave no recovery of sensory neuronal signals over the same period of time and only 10 percent motor control over four weeks," Tour said. The project began when Sikkema read about work by Italian neurosurgeon Sergio Canavero. Sikkema thought nanoribbons might enhance research that depended on PEG's ability to promote the fusion of cell membranes by adding electrical conductivity and directional control for neurons as they spanned the gap between sections of the spinal cord. Contact with the doctor led to a collaboration with the South Korean researchers. Tour said Texas-PEG's potential to help patients with spinal cord injuries is too promising to be minimized. "Our goal is to develop this as a way to address spinal cord injury. We think we're on the right path," he said. "This is an exciting neurophysiological analysis following complete severance of a spinal cord," Tour said. "It is not a behavioral or locomotive study of the subsequent repair. The tangential singular locomotive analysis here is an intriguing marker, but it is not in a statistically significant set of animals. The next phases of the study will highlight the locomotive and behavioral skills with statistical relevance to assess whether these qualities follow the favorable neurophysiology that we recorded here." Kim, co-primary author of the paper, is a research professor in the Department of Stem Cell Biology, School of Medicine, Konkuk University, Seoul, South Korea, and a researcher at Seoul National University. Lee is an associate professor of physiology at the Yonsei University College of Medicine, Seoul. Co-authors are In-Kyu Hwang of Konkuk University, Hanseul Oh of Seoul National University and Un Jeng Kim of the Yonsei University College of Medicine. Tour is the T.T. and W.F. Chao Professor of Chemistry as well as a professor of computer science and of materials science and nanoengineering. About Rice University Located on a 300-acre forested campus in Houston, Rice University is consistently ranked among the nation’s top 20 universities by U.S. News & World Report. Rice has highly respected schools of Architecture, Business, Continuing Studies, Engineering, Humanities, Music, Natural Sciences and Social Sciences and is home to the Baker Institute for Public Policy. With 3,910 undergraduates and 2,809 graduate students, Rice’s undergraduate student-to-faculty ratio is 6-to-1. Its residential college system builds close-knit communities and lifelong friendships, just one reason why Rice is ranked No. 1 for happiest students and for lots of race/class interaction by the Princeton Review. Rice is also rated as a best value among private universities by Kiplinger’s Personal Finance. To read “What they’re saying about Rice,” go to tinyurl.com/RiceUniversityoverview. Follow Rice News and Media Relations via Twitter @RiceUNews Related For more information, please click If you have a comment, please us. Issuers of news releases, not 7th Wave, Inc. or Nanotechnology Now, are solely responsible for the accuracy of the content.


News Article | February 15, 2017
Site: www.24-7pressrelease.com

YONGIN-SI, GYEONGGI-DO, SOUTH KOREA, February 14, 2017-- Yun-Gu Cho has been included in Marquis Who's Who. As in all Marquis Who's Who biographical volumes, individuals profiled are selected on the basis of current reference value. Factors such as position, noteworthy accomplishments, visibility, and prominence in a field are all taken into account during the selection process.Dr. Cho has been a general manager and advanced materials team leader for Hyundai Engineering & Construction Co., Ltd. since 1998. Working within the company's research and development division, he has led and contributed to a number of projects in multiple countries over the years. Since 2016, he has been working on concrete mix design for the Hyundai Global Business Center in South Korea, and since 2015, he has been overseeing concrete mix design and durability for the Chacao Channel Bridge in Chile. Dr. Cho has also been handling concrete mix design and durability for the Sheikh Jaber Al-Ahmad Al-Sabah Causeway Bridge in Kuwait since 2012. From 2013 to 2016, he oversaw concrete mix design and durability for the Yavuz Sultan Selim Bridge in Turkey, and from 2010 to 2013, he handled concrete mix design for a nuclear power plant in United Arab Emirates.Dr. Cho's earlier projects with the company involved low carbon, ultra-low heat concrete for mass concrete structures, ultra-high strength fire-resistant and blast-resistant concrete, low heat ultra-strength concrete, standardization for construction safety and eco-friendly construction material, and more. He brings to each project a high level of industry expertise, strong leadership skills, and an exceptional academic foundation.A graduate of Seoul National University, Dr. Cho earned a Bachelor of Arts in civil engineering in 1994, a Master of Engineering in civil engineering in 1996, and a Ph.D. in civil engineering in 2002. His latter studies focused on civil engineering as it relates to concrete. In 2009, Dr. Cho obtained a second Master of Engineering in construction management from Hanyang University. He has utilized his knowledge as a member of the mass concrete committee of the Korea Concrete Institute since 2010, and as a member of the slag committee of the Korean Recycled Construction Resource Institute.In addition to his work with Hyundai and with professional organizations, Dr. Cho has channeled his experience and knowledge to write and publish numerous works for industry publications. He has published several articles in the Journal of the Korea Concrete Institute, including "Control of Thermal Crack in Mass Concrete Using Automated Curing System," published in 2013, and "Experimental Study on Bond Behavior of Retrofit Materials by Bond-Shear Test," published in 2012. Dr. Cho has also published a number of articles in the Journal of the Korean Society of Civil Engineers.Dr. Cho's efforts have been recognized by multiple awards from the chief executive officer of Hyundai Engineering & Construction Co., Ltd. He also received a Commendation Award from the Korea Institute of Construction Materials in 2010. Dr. Cho aims for continued professional excellence and achievements as he moves forward in his career.About Marquis Who's Who :Since 1899, when A. N. Marquis printed the First Edition of Who's Who in America , Marquis Who's Who has chronicled the lives of the most accomplished individuals and innovators from every significant field of endeavor, including politics, business, medicine, law, education, art, religion and entertainment. Today, Who's Who in America remains an essential biographical source for thousands of researchers, journalists, librarians and executive search firms around the world. Marquis now publishes many Who's Who titles, including Who's Who in America , Who's Who in the World , Who's Who in American Law , Who's Who in Medicine and Healthcare , Who's Who in Science and Engineering , and Who's Who in Asia . Marquis publications may be visited at the official Marquis Who's Who website at www.marquiswhoswho.com


Zhuo M.,Xi'an University of Science and Technology | Zhuo M.,King's College | Zhuo M.,Seoul National University
Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society B: Biological Sciences | Year: 2014

Glutamate is the primary excitatory transmitter of sensory transmission and perception in the central nervous system. Painful or noxious stimuli from the periphery 'teach' humans and animals to avoid potentially dangerous objects or environments, whereas tissue injury itself causes unnecessary chronic pain that can even last for long periods of time. Conventional pain medicines often fail to control chronic pain. Recent neurobiological studies suggest that synaptic plasticity taking place in sensory pathways, from spinal dorsal horn to cortical areas, contributes to chronic pain. Injuries trigger long-term potentiation of synaptic transmission in the spinal cord dorsal horn and anterior cingulate cortex, and such persistent potentiation does not require continuous neuronal activity from the periphery. At the synaptic level, potentiation of excitatory transmission caused by injuries may be mediated by the enhancement of glutamate release from presynaptic terminals and potentiated postsynaptic responses of AMPA receptors. Preventing, 'erasing' or reducing such potentiation may serve as a new mechanism to inhibit chronic pain in patients in the future. © 2013 The Authors.


Krutmann J.,IUF Leibniz Research Institute for Environmental Medicine | Morita A.,Nagoya City University | Chung J.H.,Seoul National University
Journal of Investigative Dermatology | Year: 2012

The health consequences of sun exposure have concerned mankind for more than 100 years. Recent molecular studies in photodermatology have greatly advanced our understanding of this important topic. We will illustrate this progress by focusing on the following selected topics: (i) the nature of the DNA damage-independent part of the UVB response of human skin and the role of the arylhydrocarbon receptor in cutaneous biology, (ii) the contribution of wavelengths beyond the UV spectrum to solar radiation-induced skin damage, (iii) the emerging evidence that subcutaneous fat is a target tissue for sunlight, and (iv) the most recent insight into the mode of action of phototherapy. © 2012 The Society for Investigative Dermatology.


Hong S.-T.,Seoul National University | Fang Y.,U.S. Center for Disease Control and Prevention
Parasitology International | Year: 2012

Clonorchis sinensis is the most common human liver fluke in East Asia. Several studies proved its carcinogenesis in humans and it was reclassified as a group 1 biological carcinogen in 2009. It is still actively transmitted in endemic areas of Korea, China, Russia, and Vietnam. Currently it is estimated that more than 200 million people are at risk of infection, 15-20 million people are infected and 1.5-2 million show symptoms or complications. Several molecules and genes of the fluke have been identified and characterized. Studies on its oncogenesis and omics-based findings have been especially encouraging. Diagnosis of its infection depends mainly on detection of eggs in feces but other methods have been developed. ELISA using crude extract antigen is now popular for its diagnosis. Diagnosis by detecting DNAs from eggs in feces has been developed using PCR, real-time PCR, and LAMP, which have been found sensitive and specific. Imaging diagnosis has been studied in depth and is widely used. Any evidence of clonorchiasis, such as eggs, DNAs, or images, may lead to recommendations of chemotherapy in endemic areas. Praziquantel is the major chemotherapeutic agent for clonorchiasis and recently tribendimidine was found effective and is now under investigation as a promising chemotherapeutic alternative. Sustainable control programs which include mass chemotherapy with praziquantel and education for prevention of re-infection may reduce its morbidity and eliminate its infections in endemic areas. © 2011 Elsevier Ireland Ltd.


Baek S.H.,Seoul National University | Kim K.I.,Sookmyung Womens University
Annual Review of Physiology | Year: 2014

A growing body of evidence suggests that a subset of orphan nuclear receptors are amplified and prognostic for some human cancers. However, the specific roles of these orphan nuclear receptors in tumor progression and their utility as drug targets are not fully understood. In this review, we summarize recent progress in elucidating the direct and indirect involvement of orphan nuclear receptors in cancer as well as their therapeutic potential in a variety of human cancers. Furthermore, we contrast the role of orphan nuclear receptors in cancer with the known roles of estrogen receptor and androgen receptor in hormone-dependent cancers. © Copyright ©2014 by Annual Reviews. All rights reserved.


Chough S.K.,Seoul National University | Sohn Y.K.,Gyeongsang National University
Earth-Science Reviews | Year: 2010

This paper focuses on the tectonic and sedimentary evolution of the Cretaceous volcanic rocks and nonmarine successions in the southeastern part of the Korean peninsula, which constitute an ancient continental arc system. The arc system (Gyeongsang Arc System), comprising an arc platform (Gyeongsang Volcanic Arc) and a backarc basin (Gyeongsang Backarc Basin), was a southwestward extension of the Japanese Arc formed by oblique northward subduction of the proto-Pacific (Izanagi) plate under the Asian continent. The backarc basin was initiated in the southeastern part of the Korean peninsula in the Early Cretaceous as a narrow NS-trending trough. The basin was bounded by a major fault in the northern part of the basin from which sediments largely emanated. Sediments were deposited in streamflow-dominated alluvial fans adjacent to the fault-bounded basin margin in the north and low-gradient fluvial systems of braided channels that extended southward and southeastward for tens of kilometers. Sediments were also derived from the western highland margin, draining Precambrian to Jurassic basement rocks. The initially narrow trough progressively expanded toward the east, resulting in eastward migration of depocenters that eventually generated a broad fluvio-lacustrine plain fringing the volcanic arc platform. The arc platform played an important role for the derivation of volcanogenic materials and accreted sediments into the backarc basin via extensive fluvial network. Pyroclastic density currents and landslides, which originated from the arc platform, also entered the basin. In addition, extrusion of basaltic volcanic rocks was continual within the basin during basin expansion. The resultant succession of mixed sedimentary and volcanogenic rocks is generally indicative of a temporal increase in volcanic activity in the arc platform and in subsidence rate of the basin. In the Late Cretaceous, andesitic to rhyolitic volcanism became climactic in the arc platform, producing a number of calderas or volcanotectonic depressions. Volcaniclastic aprons fringing the arc platform encroached upon the basin fill. Intraarc basins, produced by sinistral shearing of the arc platform, received sediments from active volcanoes and footwalls of contemporaneous faults, forming small-scale streamflow-dominated alluvial fans and floodplains with later development of a deep lake. Overall, the Gyeongsang Arc System formed under an extensional or transtensional (sinistral strike-slip) stress regime, suggesting that the subducting and the overriding plates were not strongly coupled. Both the volcanic arc and the backarc basin ceased to develop as volcanic activities shifted progressively eastward in the Paleogene accompanied with rollback of the subduction of the Izanagi plate. © 2010 Elsevier B.V.


Grant
Agency: Cordis | Branch: H2020 | Program: RIA | Phase: ICT-11-2014 | Award Amount: 5.49M | Year: 2015

Wireless testbeds have become an essential tool to develop and validate innovative wireless solutions. However, due to the increasing diversity of wireless solutions and competing radio technologies, along with the ever more stringent requirements on the reliability of test results, wireless test facilities have evolved to very complex systems with steep learning curves for innovators. To speed up and facilitate the experimentation process, to lower its cost and to enhance the uptake of future non- and pre-standard solutions, the WiSHFUL project is determined to lower the experimentation threshold by developing flexible, scalable, open software architectures and programming interfaces for prototyping novel wireless solutions for a variety of applications ranging from healthcare to smart cities, supporting players in high value-add markets with considerable growth potential. Key features of WiSHFUL include (1) unified radio control, providing developers with deep control of physical and medium access components without requiring deep knowledge of the radio hardware platform and (2) unified network control allowing the rapid creation, modification, and prototyping of protocols across the entire stack. WiSHFUL will also create a testbed-on-the-move, consisting of portable facilities that can be deployed easily and efficiently at any location, allowing validation of innovative wireless solutions in the real world (with realistic propagation and interference characteristics) and involving real users. The usefulness of these facilities will be confirmed by participation of industrial and academic partners through open calls for experimentation. In addition, we envision to extend these facilities with the capability to experiment with emerging wireless technologies such as millimeter wave communications, full-duplex and massive MIMO in the scope of open calls for extensions.


News Article | March 24, 2016
Site: cen.acs.org

A wearable, graphene-based patch could one day maintain healthy blood glucose levels in people by measuring the sugar in sweat and then delivering the necessary dose of a diabetes drug through the skin (Nat. Nanotechnol. 2016, DOI: 10.1038/nnano.2016.38). The device takes scientists a step closer to the “coveted prize” in diabetes care: a noninvasive method to monitor and control blood glucose levels, writes Richard Guy of the University of Bath in a commentary about the work. For the new patch, the researchers, led by Dae-Hyeong Kim of Seoul National University, decided to detect glucose in sweat because previous studies had shown that levels of the sugar in perspiration match those in blood. Other groups have also developed devices that can analyze biomolecules in sweat (C&EN, Feb. 1, page 11). The new device uses layers of the fluoropolymer Nafion to absorb sweat and carry it toward the device’s sensors, which are built on modified graphene. The team doped the graphene with gold atoms and functionalized it with electrochemically active materials to enable reactions needed to detect glucose. In the patch’s glucose sensors, the enzyme glucose oxidase reacts with the sugar and produces hydrogen peroxide, which, through an electrochemical reaction, extracts current from the doped graphene. This produces an electrical signal proportional to the amount of glucose present. The patch also contains pH and temperature sensors that help ensure that the glucose sensor’s signals accurately reflect the sugar’s concentration in sweat. When two healthy volunteers wore the patch, the measured glucose levels—including spikes after meals—matched those from a commercial glucose meter. To monitor the levels, the patch sent its sensor signals to a device that analyzed them and then wirelessly relayed the data to a smartphone. The drug delivery half of the patch consists of an array of 1-mm-tall polymer microneedles that pierce the skin. Each needle is made from a mixture of the diabetes drug metformin and a dissolvable polymer, polyvinyl pyrrolidone. And the needles are coated with a layer of tridecanoic acid. A gold and graphene mesh sits on top of the needle array and serves as a heater that can melt the coatings. Once the tridecanoic acid melts, the needle dissolves in the skin and releases its drug payload. When researchers applied just the drug delivery component to the stomachs of diabetic mice, they could deliver enough metformin to lower the animals’ elevated blood glucose levels by more than 50% in six hours. Guy thinks the sensor portion of the patch is closer to real-world use than the drug delivery component. To make the drug delivery system practical, he says, the researchers must make the microneedle array as small as possible. That means they must find a drug that’s effective at low doses. As for the glucose detection half of the device, Guy wonders how often a user would have to calibrate the sensors to ensure accurate readings. Still, he calls the patch an impressive proof of concept. This article has been translated into Spanish by Divulgame.org and can be found here.


News Article | January 1, 2016
Site: phys.org

The joint research team of Prof. Yoon Seok Jung (UNIST, School of Energy and Chemical Engineering) and Prof. Seng M. Oh (Seoul National University) discovered a new way to develop all-solid-state lithium batteries without a risk of conflagration or explosion. It is the method of melting the solid electrolyte and coating that melted electrolyte around the electrodes. This research outcome was introduced on Advanced Materials on December 22, 2015. The organic liquid electrolyte, mainly used in existing lithium-ion batteries, has a characteristic of easily getting gasified or burned. Therefore, all-solid-sate lithium batteries are now getting an attention as the alternative option since they are non-flammable. However, the powder type of solid electrolyte does not permeate, compared to the liquid electrolyte. If the contact between electrolytes and electrode active materials is not active, it would be more difficult to move lithium-ion to the electrode. Furthermore, it will not be simple to elevate the performance revelation of batteries. To solve these problems, Prof. Jung's research team developed a way to coat the active materials with the solid electrolyte. This process called the solution-process works by diffusing the powder type of active material in the liquid from melted solid electrolyte and vaporizing the solvent. After the solution-process, it became more possible to coat the layers of solid electrolyte on the active materials. The research team also developed a material for the solid electrolyte by adding the iodized lithium (LiI) to the methanol liquid which is the compound (Li4SnS4) based on tin (Sn). The compound's ionic conductivity was originally low, but it got increased by getting mixed with LiI. Consequently, by combining two materials together, it became possible to develop the solid electrolyte with high ion conductivity and air stability. Prof. Jung says, "A newly developed solid electrolyte has the high ion conductivity and no toxicity problem. In addition, the prices of a raw material and a solvent (methanol) are comparatively low. With this technology, commercialization of solid lithium battery will be available sooner than we thought." More information: Kern Ho Park et al. Solution-Processable Glass LiI-Li SnS Superionic Conductors for All-Solid-State Li-Ion Batteries , Advanced Materials (2015). DOI: 10.1002/adma.201505008


Dev P.S.B.,University of Manchester | Pilaftsis A.,University of Manchester | Pilaftsis A.,CERN | Yang U.-K.,Seoul National University
Physical Review Letters | Year: 2014

We study a new production mechanism for heavy neutrinos at the LHC, which dominates over the usually considered s-channel W-exchange diagram for heavy-neutrino masses larger than 100-200 GeV. The new mechanism is infrared enhanced by t-channel Wγ-fusion processes. This has important implications for experimental tests of the seesaw mechanism of neutrino masses and, in particular, for the ongoing heavy neutrino searches at the LHC. We find that the direct collider limits on the light-to-heavy neutrino mixing can be significantly improved when this new production channel is properly taken into account. The scope of this new mechanism can be equally well extended to other exotic searches at the LHC. © 2014 American Physical Society.


Lee W.-J.,Seoul National University | Brey P.T.,Institute Pasteur du Laos
Annual Review of Cell and Developmental Biology | Year: 2013

Since Metchnikoff developed his views on the intestinal microflora, much effort has been devoted to understanding the role of gut microbiomes in metazoan physiology. Despite impressive data sets that have been generated by associating a phenotype-causing commensal community with its corresponding host phenotype, the field continues to suffer from descriptive and often contradictory reports. Hence, we cannot yet draw clear conclusions as to how the modifications of microbiomes cause physiological changes in metazoans. Unbiased, large-scale genetic screens to identify key genes, on both microbial and host sides, will be essential to gain mechanistic insights into gut-microbe interactions. The Drosophila genome-commensal microbiome genetic model has proven to be well suited to dissect the complex reciprocal cross talk between the host and its microbiota. In this review, we present a historical account, current views, and novel perspectives for future research directions based on the insights gleaned from the Drosophila gut-microbe interaction model. © 2013 by Annual Reviews. All rights reserved.


Yang S.J.,Research Institute of Advanced Materials | Yang S.J.,Seoul National University | Park C.R.,Research Institute of Advanced Materials | Park C.R.,Seoul National University
Advanced Materials | Year: 2012

A straightforward method for significantly improving the moisture resistance of MOFs is described. In the proposed method, MOFs are subjected to thermal treatment, thus inducing the formation of an amorphous carbon coating on the MOF surfaces that prevents hydrolysis. This approach should open up new practical applications for MOFs in areas hitherto unexplored due to concerns regarding moisture sensitivity. Copyright © 2012 WILEY-VCH Verlag GmbH & Co. KGaA, Weinheim.


Grant
Agency: Cordis | Branch: H2020 | Program: ERC-COG | Phase: ERC-CoG-2015 | Award Amount: 1.93M | Year: 2016

The goal of this project is to develop an innovative biosensor for the non-invasive, painless and real-time detection of volatile biomarkers in the exhaled breath of patients. Volatile biomarkers have been identified for several diseases including cancers, diabetes, cystic fibrosis and neurodegeneration. A miniaturized system for fast and simple breath-analysis would not only improve the early detection of these pathologies but also enable point-of-care monitoring of patients either in medical institutions or at home. Different electronic noses are in development (or even in use for diagnosing asthma), however their generalisation in reliable medical diagnosis devices is mainly hindered by their poor versatility. The main challenge is to quantitatively and simultaneously detect several volatile biomarkers with high specificity and selectivity. The ideal technology would be one which mimicked the natural olfactory systems that recognize odours by combinatorial analysis of receptor responses. Inspired by this biological example, this project aims at integrating natural olfactory receptors into two state-of-the-art technologies: Ion Channel-Coupled Receptors (ICCRs) and single-walled Carbon NanoTube-Field Effect Transistors (swCNT-FETs). ICCRs are original biosensors created by fusion of G Protein Coupled Receptors (GPCRs) with an ion channel. The recognition of a chemical compound by the GPCR is transduced into an electrical signal by the ion channel. Mammalian olfactory receptors are GPCRs, and the objective of this 5-year project is to engineer an original library of olfactory ICCRs for multiplex detection of volatile biomarkers. To detect the electrical signal with very high sensitivity and at the nanometric scale, ICCRs will be interfaced with swCNT-FET transistors by coating the carbon nanotubes with ICCR-containing nanovesicles. The recent detection of a biomarker with an ICCR-swCNT-FET device by project members demonstrates the feasibility of this approach.


Patent
Global Frontier Center For Multiscale Energy Systems, Seoul National University and Sungkyunkwan University | Date: 2014-12-03

A high-sensitivity sensor containing cracks is provided. The high-sensitivity sensor is obtained by forming microcracks on a conductive thin film, which is formed on top of a support, wherein the microcracks form a micro joining structure in which the microcracks are electrically changed, short-circuited or open, thereby converting external stimuli into electric signals by generating a change in a resistance value. The high-sensitivity sensor can be useful in a displacement sensor, a pressure sensor, a vibration sensor, artificial skin, a voice recognition system, and the like.


Grant
Agency: Cordis | Branch: FP7 | Program: CP | Phase: ICT-2013.1.7 | Award Amount: 1.31M | Year: 2013

The main target at which SMARTFIRE aims is the design and implementation of a shared experimental facility spanning different islands located in Europe (EU) and South Korea (KR). This large scaled facility will promote joint experimentation among EU and KR experimenters, encouraging them to conceive and implement innovative protocols, able to take advantage of the current leading network technologies. Existing testbed infrastructures in EU and KR, already featuring WiFi enabled nodes, wireless sensors and supporting WiMax, LTE and OpenFlow technologies, are going to be extended and federated in the experimental, as well as the control plane. These two directions are going to be supported by the leading experimental frameworks adapted by most EU testbeds, the cOntrol and Management Framework (OMF) and the Slice Federation Architecture (SFA). The OMF framework, currently supporting control and experimentation in wireless islands, is going to be expanded, in order to support experimentation with OpenFlow switches, thus integrating wireless with\nOpenFlow testbeds. Moreover, unique features, only existing in the KR testbeds will be integrated into OMF, in order to unleash the hidden potential of experimenting with heterogeneous resources. The federation in the control plane that allows assignment of multiple heterogeneous resources under a single slice is going to be developed through the extensions of SFA. Interconnection of the aforementioned islands will take advantage of the GEANT network, in the case of the EU research sites, while the respective KOREN/KREONET will be utilized by the KR sites. The two currently disjoint networks are going to be interconnected via the Trans-Eurasia Information Network (TEIN3/TEIN4) and the Global Ring Network for Advanced Application Development (GLORIAD). Finally, SMARTFIRE aims at the implementation of various pilot use cases, designed to demonstrate the power of the EU-KR shared Future Internet experimental facility.


Patent
The Board Of Trustees Of The Leland Standford Junior University and Seoul National University | Date: 2013-02-26

This invention provides a germanium electroluminescence device and a fabricating method of the same for using germanium of an indirect bandgap semiconductor without modifying a bandgap as a light-emitting layer which emits a 1550 nm-wavelength light and enabling to use not only as infrared LEDs itself but also as light sources for optical communication systems.


News Article | March 1, 2017
Site: www.eurekalert.org

The jury of the International Bruno Pontecorvo prize announced on February 27 that the Bruno Pontecorvo Prize for 2016 is to be awarded to Prof. WANG Yifang from the Institute of High Energy Physics for his outstanding contribution to the study of neutrino oscillation phenomenon and to the measurement of the Theta13 mixing angle in the Daya Bay Reactor Neutrino. WANG is the first Chinese scientist to win this award. This is another international prize for WANG after he was awarded the W. K. H. Panofsky Prize in Experimental Particle Physics in 2014, the Nikkei Asia Prize in 2015 and the Fundamental Physics Breakthrough Award in 2016. Prof. WANG was awarded the prize along with Prof. Kim Soo-Bong from Seoul National University in South Korea, and Prof. Koichiro Nishikawa from KEK in Japan, for their work on Reactor Experiment for Neutrino Oscillations (RENO) and Tokai to Kamioka long baseline neutrino oscillation (T2K) experiments, respectively. The Bruno Pontecorvo Prize is a prize for elementary particle physics awarded by the Joint Institute for Nuclear Research (JINR) in Dubna, Russia. The prize was established in 1995 to commemorate Prof. Bruno Pontecorvo, the "father of neutrino physics". In accordance with Pontecorvo's chief area of research, the prize is awarded mainly for neutrino physics. WANG proposed the Daya Bay neutrino oscillation experiment in China, including the detailed detector design and experimental plan, to precisely measure the neutrino mixing angle theta13. He assembled a large international collaboration, and was elected co-spokesperson of the experiment. The prize list for the 2016 Bruno Pontecorvo Prize was approved by the JINR Scientific Council at its 121st session on February 24. An award ceremony will be held in September this year.


Lee I.-H.,Seoul National University | Kim H.,Seoul National University | Choi T.-L.,Seoul National University
Journal of the American Chemical Society | Year: 2013

We report a versatile Cu-catalyzed multicomponent polymerization (MCP) technique that enables the synthesis of high-molecular-weight, defect-free poly(N-sulfonylamidines) from monomers of diynes, sulfonyl azides, and diamines. Through a series of optimizations, we discovered that the addition of excess triethylamine and the use of N,N′-dimethylformamide as a solvent are key factors to ensure efficient MCP. Formation of cyclic polyamidines was a side reaction during polymerization, but it was readily controlled by using diynes or diamines with long or rigid moieties. In addition, this polymerization is highly selective for three-component reactions over click reactions. The combination of the above factors enables the synthesis of high-molecular-weight polymers, which was challenging in previous MCPs. All three kinds of monomers (diynes, sulfonyl azides, and diamines) are readily accessible and stable under the reaction conditions, with various monomers undergoing successful polymerization regardless of their steric and electronic properties. Thus, we synthesized various high-molecular-weight, defect-free polyamidines from a broad range of monomers while overcoming the limitations of previous MCPs, such as low conversion and defects in the polymer structures. © 2013 American Chemical Society.


Trippe S.,Seoul National University
Journal of the Korean Astronomical Society | Year: 2014

The jet production efficiency of radio galaxies can be quantified by comparison of their kinetic jet powers Pjet and Bondi accretion powers PB. These two parameters are known to be related linearly, with the jet power resulting from the Bondi power by multiplication with an efficiency factor of order 1%. Using a recently published (Nemmen & Tchekhovskoy 2014) high-quality sample of 27 radio galaxies, I construct a PB-Pjet diagram that includes information on optical AGN types as far as available. This diagram indicates that the jet production efficiency is a function of AGN type: Seyfert 2 galaxies seem to be systematically (with a false alarm probability of 4.3 × 10-4) less efficient, by about one order of magnitude, in powering jets than Seyfert 1 galaxies, LINERs, or the remaining radio galaxies. This suggests an evolutionary sequence from Sy 2s to Sy 1s and LINERs, controlled by an interplay of jets on the one hand and dust and gas in galactic nuclei on the other hand. When taking this effect into account, the PB-Pjet relation is probably much tighter intrinsically than currently assumed. © 2014. The Korean Astronomical Society. All rights reserved.


Lee J.H.,Korea Advanced Institute of Science and Technology | Lee J.M.,Seoul National University
Annual Review of Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering | Year: 2014

This review covers key developments and trends in chemical process control during the past two decades. Control methodologies and related supporting technologies are covered, and recent trends in applications are also examined. After the widespread adoption of model-based techniques by industry, control interest has begun to move beyond the traditional realm of readily measured variables to include chemical compositions and particle features. However, the shift is being slowed by the shortage of accurate, reliable, and inexpensive sensing devices. Although the past two decades saw no new major theoretical or methodological advances, several important incremental improvements and extensions have been made to help the ripening of the technologies developed in the preceding two decades. Control is regaining its importance owing to society's renewed focus on energy and the maturation of various emerging technologies, but a community-wide consensus on what general problems should be solved is lacking. © 2014 by Annual Reviews.


Trippe S.,Seoul National University
Journal of the Korean Astronomical Society | Year: 2014

Polarization is a basic property of light and is fundamentally linked to the internal geometry of a source of radiation. Polarimetry complements photometric, spectroscopic, and imaging analyses of sources of radiation and has made possible multiple astrophysical discoveries. In this article I review (i) the physical basics of polarization: electromagnetic waves, photons, and parameterizations; (ii) astrophysical sources of polarization: scattering, synchrotron radiation, active media, and the Zeeman, Goldreich- Kylafis, and Hanle effects, as well as interactions between polarization and matter (like birefringence, Faraday rotation, or the Chandrasekhar-Fermi effect); (iii) observational methodology: on-sky geometry, influence of atmosphere and instrumental polarization, polarization statistics, and observational techniques for radio, optical, and X/γ wavelengths; and (iv) science cases for astronomical polarimetry: solar and stellar physics, planetary system bodies, interstellar matter, astrobiology, astronomical masers, pulsars, galactic magnetic fields, gamma-ray bursts, active galactic nuclei, and cosmic microwave background radiation. © 2014 The Korean Astronomical Society. All Rights Reserved.


Kim S.G.,Seoul National University
Journal of Gastric Cancer | Year: 2011

Endoscopic resection has been accepted as a curative modality for early gastric cancer (EGC). Since conventional endoscopic mucosal resection (EMR) has been introduced, many improvements in endoscopic accessories and techniques have been achieved. Recently, endoscopic submucosal dissection (ESD) using various electrosurgical knives has been performed for complete resection of EGC and enables complete resection of EGC, which is difficult to completely resect in the era of conventional EMR. Currently, ESD is accepted as the standard method for endoscopic resection of EGC in indicated cases. In this review, the history of endoscopic treatment for EGC, overall ESD procedures, and indications and clinical results of endoscopic treatment will be presented. © 2011 by The Korean Gastric Cancer Association.


Kang I.-S.,Seoul National University | Kim H.-M.,Georgia Institute of Technology
Journal of Climate | Year: 2010

The predictability of intraseasonal variation in the tropics is assessed in the present study by using various statistical and dynamical models with rigorous and fair measurements. For a fair comparison, the real-time multivariate Madden-Julian oscillation (MJO) (RMM) index, proposed by Wheeler and Hendon, is used as a predictand for all models. The statistical models include the models based on a multilinear regression, a wavelet analysis, and a singular spectrum analysis (SSA). The prediction limits (correlation skill of 0.5) of statistical models for RMM1 (RMM2) index are at days 16-17 (14-15) for the multiregression model, whereas they are at days 8-10 (9-12) for the wavelet- and SSA-based models. The poor predictability of the wavelet and SSA models is related to the tapering problem for a half-length of the time window before the initial condition. To assess the dynamical predictability, long-term serial prediction experiments with a prediction interval of every 5 days are carried out with Seoul National University (SNU) AGCM and coupled general circulation model (CGCM) for 26 (1980-2005) boreal winters. The prediction limits of RMM1 and RMM2 occur at around 20 days for both AGCM and CGCM. These results demonstrate that the skills of dynamical models used in this study are better than those of the three statistical predictions. The dynamical and statistical predictions are combined using a multimodel ensemble method. The combination provides a superior skill to any of the statistical and dynamical predictions, with a prediction limit of 22-24 days. The dependencies of prediction skill on the initial phase and amplitude of the MJO are also investigated. © 2010 American Meteorological Society.


An implicit finite element model was developed to analyze the deformation behavior of low carbon steel during phase transformation. The finite element model was coupled hierarchically with a phase field model that could simulate the kinetics and micro-structural evolution during the austenite-to-ferrite transformation of low carbon steel. Thermo-elastic-plastic constitutive equations for each phase were adopted to confirm the transformation plasticity due to the weaker phase yielding that was proposed by Greenwood and Johnson. From the simulations under various possible plastic properties of each phase, a more quantitative understanding of the origin of transformation plasticity was attempted by a comparison with the experimental observation.


Macronutrient balance is an important determinant of fitness in many animals, including insects. Previous studies have shown that altering the concentrations of yeast and sugar in the semi-synthetic media has a profound impact on lifespan in Drosophila melanogaster, suggesting that dietary protein:carbohydrate (P:C) balance is the main driver of lifespan and ageing processes. However, since yeast is rich in multiple nutrients other than proteins, this lifespan-determining role of dietary P:C balance needs to be further substantiated through trials using a chemically-defined, synthetic diet. In the present study, the effects of dietary P:C balance on lifespan and fecundity were investigated in female D. melanogaster flies fed on one of eight isocaloric synthetic diets differing in P:C ratio (0:1, 1:16, 1:8, 1:4, 1:2, 1:1, 2:1 or 4:1). Lifespan and dietary P:C ratio were related in a convex manner, with lifespan increasing to a peak at the two intermediate P:C ratios (1:2 and 1:4) and falling at the imbalanced ratios (0:1 and 4:1). Ingesting nutritionally imbalanced diets not only caused an earlier onset of senescence but also accelerated the age-dependent increase in mortality. Egg production was suppressed when flies were fed on a protein-deficient food (0:1), but increased with increasing dietary P:C ratio. Long-lived flies at the intermediate P:C ratios (1:2 and 1:4) stored a greater amount of lipids than those short-lived ones at the two imbalanced ratios (0:1 and 4:1). These findings provide a strong support to the notion that adequate dietary P:C balance is crucial for extending lifespan in D. melanogaster and offer new insights into how dietary P:C balance affects lifespan and ageing through its impacts on body composition. © 2015 Elsevier Ltd.


Chung K.,Seoul National University | Park T.,Seoul National University
International Journal of Plasticity | Year: 2013

For the combined type isotropic-kinematic hardening law to account for the Bauschinger, transient and permanent softening behaviors observed in reverse loading, formulations have been initially developed for isotropic yield functions, mainly based on the von Mises criterion, and then later extended for anisotropic yield functions. Among the efforts to introduce anisotropic yield functions to the combined type hardening formulation, however, some inconsistency has been encountered in manipulating the kinematic hardening law, especially for the nonlinear type law, even though their von Mises yield function versions have been consistent. Therefore, theoretical clarification and clearance of such inconsistency were attempted in this work by imposing the following consistency condition: the combined type hardening law is expected to behave the same as the full isotropic hardening for monotonously proportional loading, regardless of anisotropic yield functions which are coupled with the combined type hardening law. An example to account for the anisotropic hardening of an anisotropic yield function utilizing the combined type hardening law, but for which the consistency condition was partially released, was also demonstrated. © 2012 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.


Kim J.,Seoul National University | Kim H.,Seoul National University | Park S.B.,Seoul National University
Journal of the American Chemical Society | Year: 2014

In the search for new therapeutic agents for currently incurable diseases, attention has turned to traditionally "undruggable" targets, and collections of drug-like small molecules with high diversity and quality have become a prerequisite for new breakthroughs. To generate such collections, the diversity-oriented synthesis (DOS) strategy was developed, which aims to populate new chemical space with drug-like compounds containing a high degree of molecular diversity. The resulting DOS-derived libraries have been of great value for the discovery of various bioactive small molecules and therapeutic agents, and thus DOS has emerged as an essential tool in chemical biology and drug discovery. However, the key challenge has become how to design and synthesize drug-like small-molecule libraries with improved biological relevancy as well as maximum molecular diversity. This Perspective presents the development of privileged substructure-based DOS (pDOS), an efficient strategy for the construction of polyheterocyclic compound libraries with high biological relevancy. We envisioned the specific interaction of drug-like small molecules with certain biopolymers via the incorporation of privileged substructures into polyheterocyclic core skeletons. The importance of privileged substructures such as benzopyran, pyrimidine, and oxopiperazine in rigid skeletons was clearly demonstrated through the discovery of bioactive small molecules and the subsequent identification of appropriate target biomolecule using a method called "fluorescence difference in two-dimensional gel electrophoresis". Focusing on examples of pDOS-derived bioactive compounds with exceptional specificity, we discuss the capability of privileged structures to serve as chemical "navigators" toward biologically relevant chemical spaces. We also provide an outlook on chemical biology research and drug discovery using biologically relevant compound libraries constructed by pDOS, biology-oriented synthesis, or natural product-inspired DOS. © 2014 American Chemical Society.


Kim T.K.,Seoul National University | Suh M.P.,Seoul National University
Chemical Communications | Year: 2011

We have prepared a flexible metal-organic framework and demonstrated that when activated by supercritical CO2 it has greater gas sorption capacities than that activated by the heat-evacuation method, and it selectively adsorbs CO2 over N2 at room temperature. © 2011 The Royal Society of Chemistry.


Park H.,Seoul National University | Seok C.,Seoul National University
Proteins: Structure, Function and Bioinformatics | Year: 2012

Contemporary template-based modeling techniques allow applications of modeling methods to vast biological problems. However, they tend to fail to provide accurate structures for less-conserved local regions in sequence even when the overall structure can be modeled reliably. We call these regions unreliable local regions (ULRs). Accurate modeling of ULRs is of enormous value because they are frequently involved in functional specificity. In this article, we introduce a new method for modeling ULRs in template-based models by employing a sophisticated loop modeling technique. Combined with our previous study on protein termini, the method is applicable to refinement of both loop and terminus ULRs. A large-scale test carried out in a blind fashion in CASP9 (the 9th Critical Assessment of techniques for protein structure prediction) shows that ULR structures are improved over initial template-based models by refinement in more than 70% of the successfully detected ULRs. It is also notable that successful modeling of several long ULRs over 12 residues is achieved. Overall, the current results show that a careful application of loop and terminus modeling can be a promising tool for model refinement in template-based modeling. © 2012 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.


The Xpert MTB/RIF assay was introduced for timely and accurate detection of tuberculosis (TB). The aim of this study was to determine the diagnostic accuracy and turnaround time (TAT) of Xpert MTB/RIF assay in clinical practice in South Korea. We retrospectively reviewed the medical records of patients in whom Xpert MTB/RIF assay using sputum were requested. The sensitivity, specificity, positive predictive value (PPV) and negative predictive value (NPV) for the diagnosis of pulmonary tuberculosis (PTB) and detection of rifampicin resistance were calculated. In addition, TAT of Xpert MTB/RIF assay was compared with those of other tests. Total 681 patients in whom Xpert MTB/RIF assay was requested were included in the analysis. The sensitivity, specificity, PPV and NPV of Xpert MTB/RIF assay for diagnosis of PTB were 79.5% (124/156), 100.0% (505/505), 100.0% (124/124) and 94.0% (505/537), respectively. Those for the detection of rifampicin resistance were 57.1% (8/14), 100.0% (113/113), 100.0% (8/8) and 94.9% (113/119), respectively. The median TAT of Xpert MTB/RIF assay to the report of results and results confirmed by physicians in outpatient settings were 0 (0-1) and 6 (3-7) days, respectively. Median time to treatment after initial evaluation was 7 (4-9) days in patients with Xpert MTB/RIF assay, but was 21 (7-33.5) days in patients without Xpert MTB/RIF assay. Xpert MTB/RIF assay showed acceptable sensitivity and excellent specificity for the diagnosis of PTB and detection of rifampicin resistance in areas with intermediate TB burden. Additionally, the assay decreased time to the initiation of anti-TB drugs through shorter TAT.


Lee M.G.,Seoul National University | Jang I.S.,Seoul National University
Astrophysical Journal Letters | Year: 2012

We present a new determination of the distance to M101, host of the Type Ia supernova (SN Ia) 2011fe, based on the tip of the red giant branch (TRGB) method. Our determination is based on Hubble Space Telescope archival F555W and F814W images of nine fields within the galaxy. Color-magnitude diagrams of arm-free regions in all fields show a prominent red giant branch. We measure the I-band magnitudes of the TRGB, obtaining a mean value of I TRGB = 25.28 ± 0.01 (where the error is a standard error), using an edge-detection method. We derive a weighted mean value of distance modulus (m - M)0 = 29.30 ± 0.01(random) ± 0.12(systematic), corresponding to a linear distance of 7.24 ± 0.03 ± 0.40Mpc. While previous estimates for M101 show a large range (TRGB distances of (m - M) 0 = 29.05-29.42 and Cepheid distances of (m - M)0 = 29.04-29.71), our measurements of the TRGB distances for nine fields show a small dispersion of only 0.02. We combine our distance estimate and photometry in the literature to derive absolute peak magnitudes in optical and near-infrared bands of SN 2011fe. Absolute maximum magnitudes of SN 2011fe are 0.2mag brighter in the optical band and much more in the NIR than the current calibrations of SNe Ia in the literature. From the optical maximum magnitudes of SN 2011fe we obtain a value of the Hubble constant, H 0 = 65.0 ± 0.5(random) ± 5.7(systematic)kms-1Mpc-1, slightly smaller than other recent determinations of H 0. © 2012. The American Astronomical Society. All rights reserved..


Kim K.-H.,Seoul National University | Yoh J.J.,Seoul National University
Proceedings of the Combustion Institute | Year: 2013

The multi-material numerical simulation for energetic system that consists of a high explosive charge and an inert confinement is carried out with an accurate and state-of-the-art Eulerian method. An explosively driven copper tube results in a state of extreme temperature and pressure, coupled to a high speed structural response of metal due to a detonating high explosive (HE). We use the experimentally tuned Ignition and Growth (or JWL++) rate equation for the HE while the elasto-plastic response of inert is modeled by the Mie-Gruneisen equation of state (EOS) and the Johnson-Cook strength model. A new particle level-set based reactive Ghost Fluid Method (GFM) that imposes exact boundary conditions at the material's interface according to physical restraints is developed to simulate the multi-material detonation problem. Our calculations reproduce the experimental data of both unconfined and confined rate stick problems, suggesting that the method is suitable for detonation simulation of energetic systems. © 2012 The Combustion Institute. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.


To survive in hypoxic environments, organisms must be able to cope with redox imbalance and oxygen deficiency. The SIRT1 deacetylase and the HIF-1alpha transcription factor act as redox and oxygen sensors, respectively. Here, we found that SIRT1 binds to HIF-1alpha and deacetylates it at Lys674, which is acetylated by PCAF. By doing so, SIRT1 inactivated HIF-1alpha by blocking p300 recruitment and consequently repressed HIF-1 target genes. During hypoxia, SIRT1 was downregulated due to decreased NAD(+) levels, which allowed the acetylation and activation of HIF-1alpha. Conversely, when the redox change was attenuated by blocking glycolysis, SIRT1 was upregulated, leading to the deacetylation and inactivation of HIF-1alpha even in hypoxia. In addition, we confirmed the SIRT1-HIF-1alpha interaction in hypoxic mouse tissues and observed in vivo that SIRT1 has negative effects on tumor growth and angiogenesis. Our results suggest that crosstalk between oxygen- and redox-responsive signal transducers occurs through the SIRT1-HIF-1alpha interaction. Copyright (c) 2010 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.


Lee K.,Seoul National University | Hahn J.-S.,Seoul National University
Molecular Microbiology | Year: 2013

Aro80, a member of the Zn2Cys6 family proteins, activates expression of the ARO9 and ARO10 genes involved in catabolism of aromatic amino acids in response to aromatic amino acids that act as inducers. ARO9 and ARO10 are also under the control of nitrogen catabolite repression, but the direct roles for GATA factors, Gat1 and Gln3, in this regulation have not yet been elucidated. Here, we demonstrate that Aro80 is constitutively bound to its target promoters and activated by inducers at the level of transactivation. Although Aro80 also binds to its own promoter, ARO80 expression is induced only by rapamycin, but not by tryptophan. We show that Aro80 is absolutely required for Gat1 binding to the ARO9, ARO10 and ARO80 promoters upon rapamycin treatment. Gln3 binding to these promoters shows a partial requirement for Aro80. Rapamycin-dependent Gat1 and Gln3 binding to the Aro80 target promoters is not affected by tryptophan availability, suggesting that transactivation activity of Aro80 is not necessary for the recruitment of GATA factors. Rapamycin-dependent induction of Aro80 target genes also requires PP2A phosphatase complex, but not Sit4 phosphatase, acting downstream of TORC1. © 2013 John Wiley & Sons Ltd.


Shin S.,Seoul National University | Joung H.,Seoul National University
British Journal of Nutrition | Year: 2013

The aim of the present study was to identify the association of dietary patterns with osteoporosis in Korean postmenopausal women from the Korean Health and Nutrition Examination Survey 2008-10. The present cross-sectional analysis included 3735 postmenopausal women who completed a health interview, nutrition survey and a health examination including bone mineral density (BMD) measurements. The general characteristics and dietary intakes of the participants were obtained using a standardised questionnaire and a 24 h recall method, respectively. The BMD of the femoral neck and lumbar spine was measured using dual-energy X-ray absorptiometry; osteoporosis was defined based on the WHO T-score criteria. Overall, we identified four dietary patterns using factor analysis as follows: 'meat, alcohol and sugar', 'vegetables and soya sauce', 'white rice, kimchi and seaweed' and 'dairy and fruit', which accounted for 30·9 % of the total variance in food intake (11·3, 7·7, 6·0 and 5·9 %, respectively). The subjects in the highest quintile of the 'dairy and fruit' pattern showed a decreased risk of osteoporosis of the lumbar spine (53 %) compared with those in the lowest quintile, after adjusting for covariates (OR 0·47, 95 % CI 0·35, 0·65, P for trend < 0·0001). In contrast, the 'white rice, kimchi and seaweed' dietary pattern was negatively associated with bone health (OR 1·40, 95 % CI 1·03, 1·90, P for trend = 0·0479). The present results suggest that an increased intake of dairy foods and fruits in the traditional Korean diet, based on white rice and vegetables, may decrease the risk of osteoporosis in Korean postmenopausal women. Copyright © The Authors 2013.


Kim Y.C.,Seoul National University
Archives of Pharmacal Research | Year: 2010

Neurodegenerative diseases, including Alzheimer's disease, Parkinson's disease, ischemia and traumatic injury are characterized by progressive neuronal loss and dysfunction. Many neuroprotective agents modulating cellular responses against noxious stimuli, such as oxidative stresses, thereby having anti-inflammatory and antiapoptotic activity have been studied to develop the therapeutics for neurodegenerative diseases. Recently, the phenolic compounds widely spread in medicinal plants have drawn attention as potential neuroprotective agents. In this review, naturally-occuring neuroprotective phenolics and their underlying mechanisms of neuroprotective actions are summarized. © 2010 The Pharmaceutical Society of Korea and Springer Netherlands.


Ciechanover A.,Technion - Israel Institute of Technology | Kwon Y.T.,Seoul National University
Experimental & molecular medicine | Year: 2015

Mammalian cells remove misfolded proteins using various proteolytic systems, including the ubiquitin (Ub)-proteasome system (UPS), chaperone mediated autophagy (CMA) and macroautophagy. The majority of misfolded proteins are degraded by the UPS, in which Ub-conjugated substrates are deubiquitinated, unfolded and cleaved into small peptides when passing through the narrow chamber of the proteasome. The substrates that expose a specific degradation signal, the KFERQ sequence motif, can be delivered to and degraded in lysosomes via the CMA. Aggregation-prone substrates resistant to both the UPS and the CMA can be degraded by macroautophagy, in which cargoes are segregated into autophagosomes before degradation by lysosomal hydrolases. Although most misfolded and aggregated proteins in the human proteome can be degraded by cellular protein quality control, some native and mutant proteins prone to aggregation into β-sheet-enriched oligomers are resistant to all known proteolytic pathways and can thus grow into inclusion bodies or extracellular plaques. The accumulation of protease-resistant misfolded and aggregated proteins is a common mechanism underlying protein misfolding disorders, including neurodegenerative diseases such as Huntington's disease (HD), Alzheimer's disease (AD), Parkinson's disease (PD), prion diseases and Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis (ALS). In this review, we provide an overview of the proteolytic pathways in neurons, with an emphasis on the UPS, CMA and macroautophagy, and discuss the role of protein quality control in the degradation of pathogenic proteins in neurodegenerative diseases. Additionally, we examine existing putative therapeutic strategies to efficiently remove cytotoxic proteins from degenerating neurons.


Lee J.-H.,Seoul National University | Kim G.-H.,Seoul National University | Nam J.-M.,Seoul National University
Journal of the American Chemical Society | Year: 2012

Synthesizing and assembling nanoscale building blocks to form anisotropic nanostructures with the desired composition and property are of paramount importance for the understanding and use of nanostructured materials. Here we report a salt-tuned synthetic strategy using DNA-modified Au nanoparticles (DNA-AuNPs) to form Au-Ag head-body nanosnowman structures in >95% yield. We propose a mechanism for the formation of asymmetric Au-Ag nanosnowmen from DNA-AuNPs, salts, and Ag-precursor-loaded polymers. Importantly, we show that oriented assemblies of various nanostructures are readily obtained using nanosnowmen with asymmetrically modified DNA as building blocks. © 2012 American Chemical Society.


Park H.,Seoul National University | Choi T.-L.,Seoul National University
Journal of the American Chemical Society | Year: 2012

We report extremely fast tandem ring-opening/ring-closing metathesis polymerization of a monomer containing two rather unreactive functional groups: cyclohexene and a terminal alkyne. When a third-generation Grubbs catalyst was used at low temperature, this tandem polymerization produced polymers with controlled molecular weights and narrow polydispersity indices. To explain this extremely fast polymerization, its reaction mechanism was studied. This new type of controlled polymerization allowed for the preparation of block copolymers using other conventional living metathesis polymerizations. The diene on the backbone of the polymer was postfunctionalized by sequential Diels-Alder and aza-Diels-Alder reactions, which led to selective functionalization depending on the stereochemistry of the diene. © 2012 American Chemical Society.


Kang E.-H.,Seoul National University | Lee I.S.,Seoul National University | Choi T.-L.,Seoul National University
Journal of the American Chemical Society | Year: 2011

We discovered that ultrafast cyclopolymerization of 1,6-heptadiyne derivatives reached completion in 1 min using a third-generation Grubbs catalyst. After optimization, this superior catalyst selectively produced conjugated polymers having a five-membered-ring structure with excellent molecular weight control and narrow polydispersity index (PDI). This living polymerization allowed us to prepare fully conjugated diblock copolymers with narrow PDIs. Lastly, this catalyst was active enough to polymerize macromonomers with G-3 dendrons in a living manner as well. This dendronized polymer with a highly regioregular polymer backbone and bulky dendrons was visualized by atomic force microscopy, which revealed the structure of a single molecular wire surrounded by insulating dendrons. © 2011 American Chemical Society.


Myeong H.,Seoul National University | Lee K.M.,Seoul National University
Proceedings of the IEEE Computer Society Conference on Computer Vision and Pattern Recognition | Year: 2013

We propose a novel nonparametric approach for semantic segmentation using high-order semantic relations. Conventional context models mainly focus on learning pairwise relationships between objects. Pairwise relations, however, are not enough to represent high-level contextual knowledge within images. In this paper, we propose semantic relation transfer, a method to transfer high-order semantic relations of objects from annotated images to unlabeled images analogous to label transfer techniques where label information are transferred. We first define semantic tensors representing high-order relations of objects. Semantic relation transfer problem is then formulated as semi-supervised learning using a quadratic objective function of the semantic tensors. By exploiting low-rank property of the semantic tensors and employing Kronecker sum similarity, an efficient approximation algorithm is developed. Based on the predicted high-order semantic relations, we reason semantic segmentation and evaluate the performance on several challenging datasets. © 2013 IEEE.


Bang Y.-J.,Seoul National University
Expert Review of Anticancer Therapy | Year: 2011

Chemotherapy is an important part of treatment for patients with gastric cancer. Although there is no single globally accepted standard of care for patients with advanced disease, regimens typically include a fluoropyrimidine and a platinum compound with or without a third drug (usually epirubicin or docetaxel). Oral fluoropyrimidines, such as capecitabine, offer clear advantages to patients in terms of convenience, but it is only recently that comprehensive data on their efficacy and safety in patients with gastric cancer have become available. The present article reviews capecitabine in the treatment of advanced and resectable gastric cancer. Ongoing Phase III trials involving capecitabine are also discussed. The data show that capecitabine is now established as an integral part of the multi-agent regimens used in the management of patients with gastric cancers. © 2011 Expert Reviews Ltd.


Hahn S.,Seoul National University
The Cochrane database of systematic reviews | Year: 2013

Meconium aspiration syndrome (MAS) can occur when a newborn infant inhales a mixture of meconium and amniotic fluid into the lungs around the time of delivery. Other than supportive measures, little effective therapy is available. Lung lavage may be a potentially effective treatment for MAS by virtue of removing meconium from the airspaces and altering the natural course of the disease. To evaluate the effects of lung lavage on morbidity and mortality in newborn infants with MAS. We searched the Cochrane Central Register of Controlled Trials (CENTRAL, The Cochrane Library), MEDLINE, and EMBASE up to December 2012; previous reviews including cross-references, abstracts, and conference proceedings; and expert informants. We contacted authors directly to obtain additional data. We used the following subject headings and text words: meconium aspiration, pulmonary surfactants, fluorocarbons, bronchoalveolar lavage, lung lavage, pulmonary lavage. Randomised controlled trials that evaluated the effects of lung lavage in infants with MAS, including those intubated for the purpose of lavage. Lung lavage was defined as any intervention in which fluid is instilled into the lung that is followed by an attempt to remove it by suctioning and/or postural drainage. The review authors extracted from the reports of the clinical trial, data regarding clinical outcomes, including mortality, requirement for extracorporeal membrane oxygenation (ECMO), pneumothorax, duration of mechanical ventilation and oxygen therapy, length of hospital stay, indices of pulmonary function, and adverse effects of lavage. Data analysis was done in accordance with the standards of the Cochrane Neonatal Review Group. Only four small randomised controlled trials fulfilled the selection criteria. For one of these trials, no data are available for the control group. Two studies compared lavage using diluted surfactant with standard care. Meta-analysis of these two studies did not show a significant effect on mortality (typical relative risk 0.42, 95% confidence interval [CI] 0.12 to 1.46; typical risk difference -0.10, 95% CI -0.24 to 0.04) or the use of ECMO (typical relative risk 0.27, 95% CI 0.04 to 1.86; typical risk difference -0.15, 95% CI -0.35 to 0.04). For the composite outcome of death or use of ECMO, a significant effect favoured the lavage group (typical relative risk 0.33, 95% CI 0.11 to 0.96; typical risk difference -0.19, 95% CI -0.34 to -0.03; number needed to benefit [NNTB] 5). No other benefits were reported. The other published study compared surfactant lavage followed by a surfactant bolus with surfactant bolus therapy alone in MAS complicated by pulmonary hypertension. No significant improvements in mortality, pneumothorax, duration of mechanical ventilation. or duration of hospitalisation were observed. In infants with meconium aspiration syndrome, lung lavage with diluted surfactant may be beneficial, but additional controlled clinical trials of lavage therapy should be conducted to confirm the treatment effect, to refine the method of lavage treatment, and to compare lavage treatment with other approaches, including surfactant bolus therapy. Long-term outcomes should be evaluated in further clinical trials.


Podoshvedov S.A.,Seoul National University
Journal of Experimental and Theoretical Physics | Year: 2012

We study the method of generation of states that approximate superpositions of large-amplitude coherent states (SCSs) with high fidelity in free-traveling fields. Our approach is based on the representation of an arbitrary single-mode pure state, and SCSs in particular, in terms of displaced number states with an arbitrary displacement amplitude. The proposed optical scheme is based on alternation of photon additions and displacement operators (in the general case, N photon additions and N - 1 displacements are required) with a seed coherent state to generate both even and odd displaced squeezed SCSs regardless of the parity of the used photon additions. It is shown that the optical scheme studied is sensitive to the seed coherent state if the other parameters are unchanged. Output states can approximate either even squeezed SCS or odd SCS shifted relative to each other by some value. This allows constructing a local rotation operator, in particular, the Hadamard gate, which is a mainframe element for quantum computation with coherent states. We also show that three-photon additions with two intermediate displacement operators are sufficient to generate even displaced squeezed SCS with the amplitude 1.7 and fidelity more than 0.99. The effects deteriorating the quality of output states are considered. © Pleiades Publishing, Inc., 2012.


Chang Y.-S.,Seoul National University
Current Opinion in Allergy and Clinical Immunology | Year: 2012

PURPOSE OF REVIEW: Proton pump inhibitors (PPI) are one of most frequently prescribed drugs in the world. The purpose of this review is to describe the hypersensitivity reactions to PPI. RECENT FINDINGS: Hypersensitivity reactions to PPI vary from mild symptoms to life-threatening disorders. Cases of urticaria, angioedema, anaphylaxis, cytopenia, vasculitis, acute allergic interstitial nephritis, occupational contact dermatitis, photoallergic dermatitis, maculopapular eruption, erythroderma, Drug rash with eosinophilia and systemic symptoms (DRESS) syndrome, Stevens-Johnson syndrome/toxic epidermal necrolysis, and other autoimmune reactions (including cutaneous lupus erythematosus) have been described. SUMMARY: A high level of clinical suspicion is critical in the diagnosis of PPI-induced hypersensitivity reactions. Physicians should be aware of the possible hypersensitivity reactions due to PPI and routine/empirical prescription for PPI should only be used when clinically indicated. © 2012 Wolters Kluwer Health | Lippincott Williams & Wilkins.


Cho B.-J.,Seoul National University | Park K.H.,Seoul National University
Ophthalmology | Year: 2013

Objective: To investigate whether a topographic correlation exists between β-zone parapapillary atrophy (PPA) and retinal nerve fiber layer (RNFL) defect. The location and extent of the β-zone were examined. Design: Retrospective, cross-sectional study. Participants: One hundred twenty-eight eyes from 128 consecutive patients with primary open-angle glaucoma (POAG) and a single localized RNFL defect were included. Methods: Digital optic disc photographs of the enrolled eyes were reviewed and eyes with β-zone PPA were identified. The topographic parameters of β-zone PPA and RNFL defect were measured on optic disc photographs and digital red-free RNFL photographs. The association between these parameters was examined statistically. Main Outcome Measures: Angular location and angular extent of β-zone PPA and RNFL defect, angular location of point of maximum radial extent (PMRE) of β-zone PPA, and β-zone PPA-to-disc area ratio. Results: Eighty-two (64.1%) of the 128 eyes with a single localized RNFL defect had β-zone PPA. Patients with β-zone PPA were younger (by 6.6 years) than those without β-zone PPA (P = 0.001). β-Zone PPA was located most commonly inferotemporally (65.9%). The RNFL defect was located in the same hemifield as the β-zone PPA in 76% of eyes and was located in the same hemifield as PMRE in 88% of eyes. The angular location of the RNFL defect showed a linear correlation with those of β-zone PPA (r = 0.390; P<0.001) and PMRE (r = 0.558; P<0.001). The angular extent of RNFL defect was not correlated significantly with that of β-zone PPA (P = 0.106), but it was associated weakly with β-zone PPA-to-disc area ratio (r = 0.197; P = 0.026). The angular extent of the RNFL defect also was correlated with the cup-to-disc ratio (r = 0.322; P<0.001) and the cup-to-disc area ratio (r = 0.337; P = 0.002). Conclusions: In POAG, a localized RNFL defect is correlated spatially with β-zone PPA. Financial Disclosure(s): The author(s) have no proprietary or commercial interest in any materials discussed in this article. © 2013 American Academy of Ophthalmology.


Cho Y.M.,Seoul National University | Fujita Y.,Asahikawa University | Kieffer T.J.,University of British Columbia
Annual Review of Physiology | Year: 2014

Glucagon-like peptide-1 (GLP-1), an incretin hormone secreted primarily from the intestinal L-cells in response to meals, modulates nutrient homeostasis via actions exerted in multiple tissues and cell types. GLP-1 and its analogs, as well as compounds that inhibit endogenous GLP-1 breakdown, have become an effective therapeutic strategy for many subjects with type 2 diabetes. Here we review the discovery of GLP-1; its synthesis, secretion, and elimination from the circulation; and its multiple pancreatic and extrapancreatic effects. Finally, we review current options for GLP-1-based diabetes therapy, including GLP-1 receptor agonism and inhibition of GLP-1 breakdown, as well as the benefits and drawbacks of different modes of therapy and the potential for new therapeutic avenues. © Copyright ©2014 by Annual Reviews. All rights reserved.


Lee K.-A.,Seoul National University | Lee W.-J.,Seoul National University
Developmental and Comparative Immunology | Year: 2014

The association between deregulated intestinal microbial consortia and host diseases has been recognized since the birth of microbiology over a century ago. Intestinal dysbiosis refers to a state where living metazoans harbor harmful intestinal microflora. However, there is still an issue of whether causality arises from the host or the microbe because it is unclear whether deregulation of the gut microbiota community is the consequence or cause of the host disease. Recent studies using Drosophila and its simple microbiota have provided a valuable model system for dissecting the molecular mechanisms of intestinal dysbiosis. In this review, we examine recent exciting observations in Drosophila gut-microbiota interactions, particularly the links among the host immune genotype, the microbial community structure, and the host inflammatory phenotype. Future genetic analyses using Drosophila model system will provide a valuable outcome for understanding the evolutionarily conserved mechanisms that underlie intestinal dysbiosis and chronic inflammatory diseases. © 2013 Elsevier Ltd.


Auxin and brassinosteroid (BR) play essential roles in diverse aspects of growth and developmental processes in plants mainly through coordinate regulation of cell division, elongation, and differentiation. Consistent with the overlapped roles, accumulating evidence indicates that the two growth hormones act in a synergistic as well as in an interdependent manner in many cases, although the underlying molecular mechanisms are not fully understood. Here, we demonstrate that auxin and BR signaling pathways are interconnected at the transcriptional level via a negative feedback loop. An Arabidopsis activating tagging mutant dlf-1D exhibited dwarfed growth with small, dark-green leaves and reduced fertility. Hormone feeding assays revealed that the mutant phenotype is caused by the reduction of endogenous BR level. Consistent with this, a gene encoding the CYP72C1 enzyme that catabolizes BR was up-regulated. Notably, the transcript level of the ARF8 transcription factor gene, which modulates the expression of auxin-responsive genes, was significantly elevated in the mutant. In addition, the ARF8 gene expression was significantly reduced by BR but induced by brassinazole, a BR biosynthetic inhibitor. On the other hand, two BR catabolic pathway genes, DLF (CYP72C1) and BAS1, were induced by auxin. Our observations indicate that at least part of auxin and BR signaling pathways are unified through a transcriptional feedback control of the DLF and ARF8 genes.


Chen D.Y.-K.,Seoul National University
Synlett | Year: 2011

In this Account, recent advances in the total synthesis of complex molecular architectures originating from the authors laboratory are highlighted and discussed. Through thoughtful planning, intelligence gathering, and often serendipitous discoveries, a diverse collection of natural products spanning several structural classes have been successfully synthesized. The valuable information garnered from these synthetic campaigns showcases the unparalleled and undisputed value of this historical discipline and its cemented role in advancing synthetic organic chemistry to new heights and horizons. 1 Introduction 2 Total Synthesis of the Thiopeptide Antibiotics 3 Total Synthesis of the Cytotoxic Marine Macrolide, Palmerolide A 4 Total Synthesis of the Fab-Inhibitory Antibiotics, Platensimycin and Platencin 5 Total Synthesis of the Antiangiogenic Agents, the Cortistatins 6 Total Synthesis of the Resveratrol-Derived Bioactive Polyphenols, Hopeanol and Hopeahainol A 7 Total Synthesis of the Dimeric Bis-indole Alkaloid, Haplophytine 8 Total Synthesis of the Novel Sesquiterpenoids, Echinopine A and B 9 Total Synthesis of the Selective Cytotoxic Agent towards Renal Cancer Cells, Englerin A 10 Formal Synthesis of the Furanobis-indole Alkaloid, Phalarine 11 Total Synthesis of the Neuroprotective Agent, Nanolobatolide 12 Conclusion.© Georg Thieme Verlag Stuttgart · New York.


Living donor liver transplant (LDLT) is one of the important modalities to treat hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) in Asian countries. LDLT for HCC consists of >50% of the total LDLT at Seoul National University Hospital (SNUH). Milan or University of California San Francisco (UCSF) criteria were not considered as absolute selection criteria for LDLT at SNUH. We experienced that some patients with beyond Milan criteria have long-term survival after LDLT. On the contrary, LDLT showed poorer outcome than deceased donor LT (DDLT) in patients with within UCSF criteria in our series. There are several reasons for higher recurrence rate in LDLT such as fast-track selection and rapid regeneration in LDLT. Therefore, the feasibility of conventional criteria based on tumor size and number to predict HCC recurrence after LDLT seemed somewhat different from that of DDLT. We identified significant pre-operative biological factors such as AFP, PIVKAII, and PET positivity. Combination of those biological factors predicted HCC recurrence better than conventional criteria based on size and number. All patients with three risk factors showed 100% recurrence. This group should be excluded regardless of Milan criteria.There have been debates in expanding the criteria in LDLT. Some centers still stick on the expanded criteria that are estimated to yield a 5-year survival of approximately 50%. However, there was no completely tailored criterion to predict HCC recurrence exactly. The survival after recurrence was also different from case by case. Furthermore, the introduction of m-TOR inhibitor and targeted agent improved survival after recurrence. Based on these ideas, we experimentally expanded our indication to the far advanced HCC (HCC larger than 10 cm or more than 10 numbers or with macrovascular invasion preoperatively). The patients with far advanced HCC have usually poor prognosis. However, the selected patients with low AFP (<200 ng/ml), 2-year recurrence free survival was 54.5%.In conclusion, we are now expanding the criteria selectively up to patients with macrovascular invasion if there are no other effective treatment options and the expected survival and risk after LT is acceptable in both recipient and donor. The current absolute contraindication for LDLT in SNUH is extrahepatic metastasis.


Lee J.S.,Seoul National University | Jang J.,Seoul National University
Journal of Industrial and Engineering Chemistry | Year: 2014

Photocatalyst represents alternative solutions for renewable energy generation and environmental remediation. For photocatalytic applications, semiconductor nanomaterials emerge as important materials due to their unique structures, chemical and physical properties. Herein, we illustrate a brief overview of the recent progress in the development of hetero-structure nanomaterial based photocatalysts. Particularly, we focus our discussions on various dimensional (0D, 1D, 2D, and 3D) hetero-nanostructure of semiconductors to solve essential problems that are visible light absorption, fast charge separation, effective cocatalyst for charge utilization, and photoelectrochemical stability. © 2013 The Korean Society of Industrial and Engineering Chemistry.


Bang Y.-J.,Seoul National University
Therapeutic Advances in Medical Oncology | Year: 2011

Tyrosine kinases have a crucial role as key regulators of signaling pathways that influence cell differentiation and growth. Dysregulation of tyrosine kinase-mediated signaling is understood to be an important oncogenic driver. Genetic rearrangements involving the tyrosine kinase anaplastic lymphoma kinase (ALK) gene occur in non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC), anaplastic large cell lymphomoas, inflammatory myofibroblastic tumors, and other cancers. Cells with abnormal ALK signaling are sensitive to ALK inhibitors such as crizotinib. This review will highlight the discovery of the fusion between echinoderm microtubuleassociated protein-like 4 (EML4) and ALK as an oncogenic driver, recognition of other ALK gene rearrangements in NSCLC, and the confirmation that crizotinib is an effective treatment for patients with ALK-positive NSCLC. Work is underway to further define the role for crizotinib in the treatment of ALK-positive lung cancer and other cancers and to investigate the molecular mechanisms for resistance to ALK inhibition with crizotinib. © 2011 The Author(s).


Kim Y.M.,Seoul National University
Database : the journal of biological databases and curation | Year: 2014

Cryptochromes are flavoproteins that play a central role in the circadian oscillations of all living organisms except archaea. Cryptochromes are clustered into three subfamilies: plant-type cryptochromes, animal-type cryptochromes and cryptochrome-DASH proteins. These subfamilies are composed of photolyase/cryptochrome superfamily with 6-4 photolyase and cyclobutane pyrimidine dimer photolyase. Cryptochromes have conserved domain architectures with two distinct domains, an N-terminal photolyase-related domain and a C-terminal domain. Although the molecular function and domain architecture of cryptochromes are conserved, their molecular mechanisms differ between plants and animals. Thus, cryptochromes are one of the best candidates for comparative and evolutionary studies. Here, we have developed a Web-based platform for comparative and evolutionary studies of cryptochromes, dbCRY (http://www.dbcryptochrome.org/). A pipeline built upon the consensus domain profile was applied to 1438 genomes and identified 1309 genes. To support comparative and evolutionary genomics studies, the Web interface provides diverse functions such as (i) browsing by species, (ii) protein domain analysis, (iii) multiple sequence alignment, (iv) homology search and (v) extended analysis opportunities through the implementation of 'Favorite Browser' powered by the Comparative Fungal Genomics Platform 2.0 (CFGP 2.0; http://cfgp.snu.ac.kr/). dbCRY would serve as a standardized and systematic solution for cryptochrome genomics studies. Database URL: http://www.dbcryptochrome.org/


Min S.-K.,CSIRO | Son S.-W.,Seoul National University
Journal of Geophysical Research: Atmospheres | Year: 2013

It has been suggested that the Hadley cell has been widening during the past three decades in both hemispheres, but attribution of its cause(s) remains challenging. By applying an optimal fingerprinting technique to 7 modern reanalyses and 49 coupled climate models participating in the CMIP3 and CMIP5, here we detect an influence of human-induced stratospheric ozone depletion on the observed expansion of the Hadley cell in the Southern Hemisphere (SH) summer. The detected signal is found to be separable from other external forcings that include greenhouse gases (GHGs), confirming a dominant role of stratospheric ozone in the SH summer climate change. Our results are largely insensitive to observational and model uncertainties, providing additional evidence for a human contribution to the atmospheric circulation changes. © 2013. American Geophysical Union. All Rights Reserved.


Kim Y.-K.,Seoul National University | Heo I.,Seoul National University | Kim V.N.,Seoul National University
Cell | Year: 2010

Small regulatory RNAs and their associated proteins are subject to diverse modifications that can impinge on their abundance and function. Some of the modifications are under the influence of cellular signaling, thus contributing to the dynamic regulation of RNA silencing. © 2010 Elsevier Inc.


Jung J.W.,Seoul National University | Jo W.H.,Seoul National University
Advanced Functional Materials | Year: 2010

Polymer solar cells are fabricated by a novel solution coating process, roller painting. The roller-painted film - composed of poly(3-hexylthiophene) (P3HT) and [6,6]-phenyl-C61-butyric acid methyl ester (PCBM) - has a smoother surface than a spin-coated film. Since the roller painting is accompanied by shear and normal stresses and is also a slow drying process, the process effectively induces crystallization of P3HT and PCBM. Both crystalline P3HT and PCBM in the roller-painted active layer contribute to enhanced and balanced charge-carrier mobility. Consequently, the rollerpainting process results in a higher power conversion efficiency (PCE) of 4.6%, as compared to that for spin coating (3.9%). Furthermore, annealingfree polymer solar cells (PSCs) with high PCE are fabricated by the roller painting process with the addition of a small amount of octanedi-1,8-thiol. Since the addition of octanedi-1,8-thiol induces phase separation between P3HT and PCBM and the roller-painting process induces crystallization of P3HT and PCBM, a PCE of roller-painted PSCs of up to 3.8% is achieved without post-annealing. A PCE of over 2.7% can also be achieved with 5 cm2 of active area without post-annealing. © 2010 WILEY-VCH Verlag GmbH & Co. KGaA, Weinheim.


Chung J.W.,Seoul National University
The Korean journal of gastroenterology = Taehan Sohwagi Hakhoe chi | Year: 2013

Conventional triple therapy (CT) for Helicobacter pylori infection fails in up to one-third of patients. Sequential therapy (ST) seem be more effective than CT in other countries. However, there is no systemic literature review that directly compares CT and ST in Korea. The aim of this study was to compare ST with CT for H. pylori infection in Korea. Six randomized, prospective controlled trials were used to compare 10-day ST and 7- to 14-day CT in treatment-naive patients with documented H. pylori infection in Korea. Pooled eradication rates and OR with 95% CI were calculated. The intention-to-treat eradication rates of H. pylori involving 1,529 patients were 79.7% (95% CI, 76.8-82.5%) for ST (n=754) and 68.1% (95% CI, 64.8-71.4%) for CT (n=775) (OR, 1.838; p<0.001). The per-protocol eradication rate of H. pylori involving 1,366 patients was 86.4% (95% CI, 83.3-88.5%) for ST (n=682) and 76.0% (95% CI, 72.8-79.2%) for CT (n=684) (OR, 1.974; p<0.001). Ten-day ST was superior to CT in terms of eradicating H. pylori infection. Therefore, ST should be considered as a first-line therapy in Korea. However, ST did not achieve a sufficient eradication rate. More effective therapy should be developed.


Kim B.,Seoul National University | Park K.,Seoul National University | Rhee K.,Seoul National University
Cellular and Molecular Life Sciences | Year: 2013

The vast majority of mammalian testes are located outside the body cavity for proper thermoregulation. Heat has an adverse effect on mammalian spermatogenesis and eventually leads to sub- or infertility. Recent studies have provided insights into the molecular response of male germ cells to high temperatures. Here, we review the effects of heat on male germ cells and discuss the mechanisms underlying germ cell loss and impairment. We also discuss the role of translational control in male germ cells as a potential protective mechanism against heat-induced germ cell apoptosis. © 2012 Springer Basel AG.


Choi H.,Seoul National University | Lee J.,Seoul National University | Lee J.,Ajou University | Park H.,Seoul National University
Annual Review of Fluid Mechanics | Year: 2014

We present an overview of the aerodynamics of heavy vehicles, such as tractor-trailers, high-speed trains, and buses. We introduce three-dimensional flow structures around simplified model vehicles and heavy vehicles and discuss the flow-control devices used for drag reduction. Finally, we suggest important unsteady flow structures to investigate for the enhancement of aerodynamic performance and future directions for experimental and numerical approaches. Copyright © 2014 by Annual Reviews. All rights reserved.

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